Adapted from original Twitter threads here and here.


In an Instagram post, Jeff Nelson made the following sexist memes, bullying Danielle Belardo for recommending plant oils for her patients (supported by science).

Danielle is a vegan cardiology fellow and one of the nicest people you will ever meet. She has connected people across the nutrition spectrum and cares only about science and helping patients. She puts up with us all, and that is extraordinary.

Here is another Jeff meme:

In a long email sent to major figures in the plant-based community several days ago, where Jeff would rant about Danielle’s heresy, Jeff spent PAGES reminding recipients of their debt to him for having hosted their websites and promoting their careers in the 90s. This included none other than:

Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Michael Klaper, Dr. Neal Barnard, John Robbins, Physicians Committee, Rip Esselstyn, and many others. (Send them a message if you have any comments about this article.)

In follow-up emails, and to their credit, many defended Danielle and the preponderance of evidence. Everyone whose opinion matters knows who the good plant-based doctors are. Dr. David L. Katz and Dr. Garth Davis were among these. Evidence, not ideology. Thank you.

Yet in these private emails, some of the above figures continued ripping into Danielle, expressing lukewarm reservations about Jeff’s methods but supporting his views. Seriously? Everyone knows that this lends implicit support for what he is doing. Which is what he was after in the email and what he received. Shockingly, this is how the plant-based establishment operates.

Jeff knows he will be silently supported by major figures in the plant-based community. Who “disagree with his methods”. So let me remind you of these terrible, sexist memes:

Is this acceptable behavior? To bully plant-based female doctors on social media over scientific disagreements with sexualizing, sexist memes? To make them question their commitment to communicating science online? To try to exclude them? Is this acceptable behavior?

I ask these questions to the following people who were included on these emails: Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Kim Williams, Dr. Michael Greger, Dr. Michael Klaper, Dr. Rob Ostfeld, Jeff Novick, Julieanna Hever, Rich Roll, Whole Foods. (Click on the links, and you can ask them this question too.)

Do you endorse your father’s behavior @ninaandranda? Do you think it is OK that he bullies women online with memes like these?

Back to the science. Here is a figure from a paper published by none other than

Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn

Dr. Dean Ornish

Dr. Kim Williams

Dr. Neal Barnard



Another figure from the same paper:

Here’s the text from this paper. Verbatim:

“The evidence base for olive oil is the most comprehensive, with clear evidence for a benefit in ASCVD risk reduction.”

“The 2015 to 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans support the use of liquid vegetable oils within the context of a calorie-controlled, heart-healthy diet to decrease ASCVD risk.”

Yep, that’s right. The major proponents of a low-fat plant-based diet all endorse moderate consumption of olive oil.

Not only is Jeff Nelson a sexist, conspiracy theory-mongering asshole, his closest buddies have published research in the American College of Cardiology’s flagship journal saying explicitly that he is wrong.

Will Jeff Nelson stop? Please help this asshole by retweeting this thread.

Also I wonder if Dr. Jennifer Gunter has any thoughts about using memes like these to bully female doctors online

Addendum: Much respect to Dr. Kim Williams, Dr. Koushik Reddy, Dr. Rob Ostfeld, and countless others (some also tagged in this thread) for supporting diverse, science-based plant-based nutrition.

UPDATE: Since making this post, Jeff has alternatively denied any emails and threatened to continue harassing anyone who might have shared them with me.

In this update, we will see copies of these non-existent emails.

But before that, I would like to make a note: I will be temporarily unblocking all carnivores and keto dieters–around a thousand–for the next week so that they can watch and interact with Jeff Nelson based on the contents of this thread.

For the record, I strongly recommend that all interactions be 100% cordial and civil. But assertive…

Read on. You will not be disappointed.

Onto Jeff’s denial.

Now his threat.

Now, to be clear, I am on good terms with half a dozen people on those emails. And could get copies from them, too. So I hope he puts up the videos for all of them.

But before we proceed, it is important that we get more context. Who exactly was he implying a threat to?

Who is the target of these taken-down videos?

That person is none other than Dr. Joel Fuhrman, a very famous (and definitely one of the more intelligent) plant-based doctor.

Jeff Nelson was threatening Joel Fuhrman to try to get me to stop going after him.

Joel Fuhrman, after an online altercation with Jeff, has in fact been blackballed from plant-based social gatherings and conferences after a long campaign of harassment from Jeff. Yes, that’s right: blackballed. Excluded from the plant-based community. Ostracized.

But for what?

None other than openly questioning Jeff’s conviction that nuts, seeds, oils, and omega-3s should be eliminated from the diet. ALL fats.

No, really.

Here is a video of Fuhrman apologizing to Jeff for saying that Jeff’s ideas were “dangerous and crazy”:

No joke. Watch the video.

Yet, apparently Jeff had continued to make yet more harassment videos even after Fuhrman apologized. Here is an account by Fuhrman on the above Youtube page:

But how exactly did Jeff Nelson get Joel Fuhrman ostracized from the plant-based community? Here’s how: Jeff is best friends with the Esselstyns and Campbells. That means, who Jeff does not like, is disinvited. Which is what has happened to Fuhrman.

Jeff Nelson, because of who he knows, has the power to CANCEL plant-based doctors.

That is what Jeff was threatening in his replies to me: restarting the campaign of harassment against Joel Fuhrman, which he was just beginning with Danielle before I made this thread.

With that background, let us see the emails. The ones that Jeff says I am making up.

Let us see them in their entirety.

There is so much here that I will not be able to comment on for reasons of time. There is just so much.

But a few points.

First, “I am important and you all owe me. … Also I went to Stanford and Yale (I’m one of the good old boys).” We will return to this later.

Second, Garth knows Jeff’s history, so Garth complained first when he started observing a pattern of abuse by Jeff against Danielle. And Garth defended the science.

Jeff then complained that he was being MUZZLED, even though he was the one running around harassing and muzzling doctors.

He also claimed to be only interested in the science. But then why these memes? They are hardly of someone just “interested in the science”.

Also important to note that this man, “just interested in the science”, refused to debate when Dr. Avi Bitt challenged him, and proceeded to get bludgeoned by Avi in the comments.

But he made sure to post this meme the next day! Just interested in the science, folks!

Oh and surely it was not Danielle he was implicating in his meme. These emails about Danielle and his memes surely have nothing to do with one another, despite having written a 3-page email about Danielle specifically…

What could possibly be motivating this nastiness on Jeff’s part? Why is it tolerated by the low-fat WFPB establishment?

Perhaps we shall try to investigate these questions in a part 3, especially if Jeff keeps on.

Jeff: I recommend having a good, long cry, a look inward, and a break from social media.

Anyone else who has been bullied or is being bullied by Jeff: please feel free to DM me and share your story. If it is substantial, I will share it on my Twitter page.

Now or at any other time in the future.

And that’s it for me tonight.

OK, not quite. This is:

There are more emails.


Jeff Nelson continues to harass Danielle on YouTube and is now harassing Joel Kahn because he believes Joel leaked the emails. (UPDATE: As if March 2020, apparently Jeff has also been making yet more videos about Danielle and myself! I have never watched any of these and have no intention of ever doing so.)

I will now post the emails, sent a couple of days before Jeff posted the memes. (context)

Jeff denies having sent these emails and denies having harassed Danielle.

And yet…

Draw your own conclusions.

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