Recently a 53 year old man sued the estate of diet guru Dr. Adkins after seeing his cholesterol increase after two months of the diet. Is such a lawsuit a comment on our attitudes concerning risk? Well, according to Dr. Sydney Smith who hosts the website Medpundit, the answer is yes: “High cholesterol, such as this man had, is just one of many risk factors for heart disease, along with age, sex, smoking, diabetes, being out of shape, and, well, you get the idea. Not one of these risk factors is a cause of heart disease in the same way that say, the cold virus is the cause of the common cold. Unfortunately, having widely adopted the precautionary principle, we have taken the inevitable next step beyond. Risk no longer means the possibility of harm. Risk is harm.”

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