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Monday, May 05, 2014

Healthy diets are bad for you?

WRONG! (apparently...)
(pic source)

Computer expert and financial maven Karl Denninger lost a lot of weight a couple of years ago. He's keen to spread the news that carbohydrates are the enemy.

Repeating his message today, Denninger references a WSJ article by investigative journalist Nina Teicholz, trailing her dietary-fat book that is due out next week. The article reveals that the research recommending the so-called "Mediterranean diet" was deeply flawed:

"Dr. Keys visited Crete during an unrepresentative period of extreme hardship after World War II. Furthermore, he made the mistake of measuring the islanders' diet partly during Lent, when they were forgoing meat and cheese. Dr. Keys therefore undercounted their consumption of saturated fat. Also, due to problems with the surveys, he ended up relying on data from just a few dozen men—far from the representative sample of 655 that he had initially selected."

It now seems that official dietary advice has been not only wrong, but lethally so:

"Excessive carbohydrates lead not only to obesity but also, over time, to Type 2 diabetes and, very likely, heart disease. The real surprise is that, according to the best science to date, people put themselves at higher risk for these conditions no matter what kind of carbohydrates they eat. Yes, even unrefined carbs. Too much whole-grain oatmeal for breakfast and whole-grain pasta for dinner, with fruit snacks in between, add up to a less healthy diet than one of eggs and bacon, followed by fish. The reality is that fat doesn't make you fat or diabetic. Scientific investigations going back to the 1950s suggest that actually, carbs do."

One dramatic claim is that in the light of this new knowledge, Type 2 diabetes can be reversed. Newcastle University Professor Roy Taylor recommends weight loss through a calorie-reduced diet. However, diabetes blogger Janet Ruhl's take on this is that cutting calories implies cutting carbohydrates; it's not the weight that's the problem, but the insulin-level-jangling carbs.


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Sobers said...

I came to this conclusion a few years ago. Due to a digestive problem I had to cut out all carbs. Despite eating heartily of all the other things (I eat cheese, butter and red meat with all the fat like its going out of fashion) I lost weight rapidly, and my cholesterol didn't go up either. In fact the good/bad ratio improved. I came to the conclusion that we are not evolved to eat complex carbs. If you think what our ancestors would have eaten - meat, shoots and leaves and a few fruits in season, and how little time ago (in evolutionary terms) that farming developed to allow us to have grains and sugars, it makes sense that humans have not evolved to deal with these new food sources yet.

There is increasing evidence that it is not cholesterol itself that causes heart disease, but inflammation of the arteries caused by the excess carb intake, and the cholesterol is a symptom of that inflammation, not the cause. Cholesterol is part of the body's repair process and the inflammation causes its excess production in an attempt to solve the problem. This then causes the furring up of the arteries.

Of course the medical profession will never admit outright that they got it wrong - partly out of pride, and partly because I expect they fear being sued for negligence - their advice has undoubtedly killed millions of people worldwide over the last 40-50 years.

Sackerson said...

Thanks, Sobers. Ohhhh, the compensation... fancy working up a claim?