Doctors Offer to Sponsor Beef Fat Cleanup in Exchange for Ad Promoting Vegan Diet

The Physicians Committee
NEWS RELEASE January 11, 2011
Doctors Offer to Sponsor Beef Fat Cleanup in Exchange for Ad Promoting Vegan Diet
Clean up your arteries. Go vegan.

WASHINGTON—The Houston Ship Channel beef fat spill should bring awareness to the effect animal fat has on our arteries, says a nonprofit doctors group that has offered to help the company that spilled the fat pay for cleanup in exchange for an ad on the ruptured storage tank. The ad would read, “Clean up your arteries. Go vegan.”

In a letter to John Lindquist of Jacob Stern & Sons, Susan Levin, M.S., R.D., director of nutrition education for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, offers to supply the company with 100 additional pitchforks to help clean up the spilled fat.

“Just as the 15,000 gallons of beef fat have shut down this major waterway, animal fat in our diets clogs our arteries, increasing the risk of heart attacks and stroke,” Levin writes in her letter to Lindquist. “Scientific evidence shows that switching to a vegan diet, which is low in fat and cholesterol free, can help keep our arteries clear.”

Research shows that diets high in red meat and other animal products increase the risk of heart disease, obesity, and other chronic diseases. More than 5,600 people in Houston died of heart disease in 2004, according to data from the World Health Organization.

The beef fat cleanup effort was scheduled to wrap up Thursday, Jan. 6, but it is taking longer than expected. The Coast Guard has announced that the vital marine artery will remain closed for at least four days. Crews are gathering the chunks of fat with nets and then piercing them with pitchforks to remove them from the water. “Our ad would help support your cleanup effort—and it would help residents of Houston recognize the benefits of a healthful diet,” Levin writes.

For more information or to schedule an interview with Ms. Levin, call Jessica Frost at 202-527-7342 or e-mail

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.

Media Contact:
Jessica Frost
202-527-7342 office
202-607-0952 cell
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