File Size: 3017 KB
Print Length: 460 pages
Publisher: Anchor; 1 edition (September 25, 2007)
Publication Date: September 25, 2007
I completely believed the calorie consumption in/calories out type of diets: that is, if you consume more calories than you expend, you will put on weight, and that you lose weight by expending more calorie consumption than you consume. Of which model was simple and made a lot of sense. However Taubes sure argues, it is not only too simplistic, it is wrong.
What matters isn't the quantity of calories taken, but their quality. Grain, potatoes, flour (including bread, bread, pasta, etc. ), sugar, and other refined, easily digestible carbohydrates are transformed into simple sugars in our digestive systems. In turn, this sugar enters our blood streams and raises our glucose levels. Since high blood sugar is dangerous and fatal or even addressed, our bodies reply by producing insulin which causes that blood sugars to be converted into body fat and stored in our fat cells. This is all basic high-school the field of biology, and completely uncontroversial. Taubes, however , goes further and cites study after examine that implicate the recommended " healthy" low-fat, high-carb diets as a main cause of obesity, heart heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, certain cancers and a whole range of other health problems. He explains the components that lead to these diseases, and punches openings in the accepted wisdom behind recommended " healthy" dietary guidelines.
I was on a long, home-based flight when I read an in-flight magazine article by Taubes about this book back in early 2008. I used to be very distrustful, because what he got written flew when confronted with what I had come to trust about health and diet, but I was intrigued due to the claims he made about the links between diet and hypertension. I had been recently diagnosed with hypertension (high blood pressure) and my doctor got put me on the course of medication to carry it under control. He got also told me to cut out as much sodium from my diet as possible. When I asked my doctor what I needed to do to come off the medication completely, this individual told me there was nothing I could do and that I probably needed it for the relax of living. I was in my early 40's and didn't like requirements of that at all! So I bought a copy of this book and read it from cover to cover.
This was a revelation!
This individual cited studies which suggested that hypertension was brought on by eating a diet rich in easily comestible carbohydrates. Such a diet raises blood sugar, which in turn raises insulin - in order to convert that sugar to body fat, thereby reducing blood sugars, and storing the ensuing fat in the bodies fat cells. However, the research indicated that insulin also had other outcomes on the body, one that was to cause the kidneys to reabsorb more water back into the blood stream. Put simply, insulin acted as an anti-diuretic. The resulting excess water increased blood pressure. (One of the drugs in my blood pressure medication was a diuretic, so it evidently worked well by reducing the amount of normal water in my bloodstream. ) At the same time, Taubes pointed out that blood sodium levels, which conventional wisdom claimed was the cause of that excess water (again, with no great deal of proof to support it), was quite easily regulated by the kidneys and approved out of the body in urine.
This made a lot of sense to me, and so I started out a diet that the book indicated would be healthier: one without starchy food, but with fish, meat, dairy products and green vegetables. Within times, I started getting muscle cramps and dizzy spells, and saw my medical doctor about the problem. This seemed that the mixture of the diet and my hypertension medication was giving me low bloodstream pressure and dehydration symptoms. He halved my medication dosage, instructed me to buy a stress monitor, and also to come off the medication altogether if my symptoms continued - but for check my blood pressure regularly. In the end, I stopped taking medication, and my stress was routinely around 118/75. So much for having to take the medication for the rest of my life.
But other effects were happening to me while I was with this diet. I started shedding pounds (I was, I'll admit, somewhat obese when I started out the diet), yet I never felt hungry, and could seemingly eat as much as I liked, without ever feeling bloated or full. This was supposedly one of the main great things about the diet and one of the primary points of the book, but I was still surprised with the results.
Taubes' research also predicted that such a diet would do the following to my bloodstream lipids: it would lower triglyceride levels, raise HDL (" good" cholesterol) levels and possibly raise BAD (" bad" cholesterol). Above the course of a year, the blood work performed by my medical doctor backed this up: I significantly lowered my triglyceride levels, significantly raised my HDL levls - both unequivocally good things - while slightly increasing my LDL levels. Taubes' studies had indicated that HDL levels had a strong inverse correlation with heart heart disease incidence (that is, the higher the HDL levels, the lower the risk of coronary heart disease), while LDL had a weak, positive correlation, therefore i wasn't too concerned about the increase in LDL.
Thus, it worked for me personally.
However, this is not a book mostly about diet. This might be more correct to say that it's a book about the science of diet, nutrition and health, and Taubes is thrilled to acknowledge that we still have to do much more research on the subject, but without the preconceptions. Indeed, all through the book, Taubes points out the lies, errors, misinterpretations and failed critical thinking that led to the current dietary recommendations of a predominantly low-fat, high-carb diet. If those recommendations are right, he asks, why are we seeing such an explosion in being overweight, hypertension and type 2 diabetes diagnoses?
He certainly doesn't claim to have all the answers, but he does put a lot of pseudo-scientific diet & health claims to the sword - and he explains why. This individual convincingly argues that Ancel Keys' " lipid hypothesis" - that diets that are high in body fat, and high in over loaded fat in particular, cause heart heart disease - not only has no proof to back up it, but is contradicted by the proof that is available. Taubes also demonstrates that most likely saturated fat, far from being unhealthy, is actually an essential component of our diets.
I highly recommend this book!, I have worked in hospitals and have absolutely been in a training position in health proper care since 1972. That complete time I marched to the unceasing drum of dietary-fat-and-cholesterol-lead-directly-to-heart-disease, now the lipid theory of cardiovascular disease. This never occurred to me personally to inquire "Where is the hard evidence? " I assumed it was irrefutably proven. Then factors in my own life led me personally to eventually question that ever present mantra.
The own mother had her first heart attack when she was just forty eight yrs . old. In her seventies she was put on a statin for raised cholesterol to become someone I barely recognized; argumentative, irritable, forgetful, poor coordination and very depressed. Nothing in my own medical proper care education lead me to blame any of that on statin drugs. What was even more puzzling was that she had never been one to eat fatty foods or things laden with cholesterol. But I never stopped to think about that. I did know she battled with weight her whole life and hence was aware in eating things less fat, as well as only using polyunsaturated oils for cooking. But it is also true she got a problem with carbs - they always were the majority of her diet. I lost her to a heart attack in 1995.
3 years ago, as my own cholesterol nudged up a bit, but nevertheless within traditional normal range, I did not hesitate to adhere to my physician's suggestion to commence a statin (Lipitor). If anything, I felt I was getting ahead of the danger of losing my life as my mom had. But additionally like her, I have trouble with my weight and like her I gravitate to carbohydrates. I was strictly avoiding all saturated fats and nutritional cholesterol, cooking with the supposedly "healthy" polyunsaturated herbal oils and always choosing fat-free or low-fat dairy products. In all that point in hospitals and health education and learning we had a two other mantras - "a calorie is a calorie" and its corollary "calories in calories out" as the only approach to weight management. But every calorie restrictive program I tried just left me personally hungry and with only short term weight damage.
I developed, in those three years, various discomfort, at first too varied to create a pattern. I was aware that I used to be having a marked increase in short-term memory problems, and my joints were getting so troublesome I was reluctant to do the exercise my doctor kept harping about to keep my weight under control. I came across myself getting irritable, less considering life and experience O. L. D. snabel-a 60. Out of disappointment with both weight and how crummy I used to be feeling, I read a few food advice books, and one, "In Defense of Food" started making sense to me. 2 other books were described within that one, so I shifted to one of them - "Good Calories, Bad Calories. inches The author already got an excellent track record of science journalism.
Consider how startled I was while reading Gary Taubes book to learn there never has been definitive reproducible studies to prove the relationship between consuming dietary over loaded fat and cholesterol to the introduction of high blood bad cholesterol, nor to cholesterol numbers as being a directly predictive factor in cardiovascular disease mortality. This particular was a amazing revelation to me. Then I proceeded to read about the abundance info exposing "healthy" seed oils, such as corn, safflower, sunflower, soy and canola, revealed no evidence of reducing either heart disease itself or maybe the mortality rate from cardiovascular disease. Then the arrived the real shocker....... the most constant risk factor for developing cardiovascular disease, as far as diet is concerned, is the intake of carbohydrates. I was dumb struck. He also challenges, then destroys, the assumption that all calorie consumption are created equal and that saturated fat is harmful. One whole part is devoted just to how our bodies manufacture and use insulin and the stress that excess carbohydrate puts on our system, leading eventually to insulin resistance and finally type 2 diabetes.
I will be not easily swayed, so it will be important to me that when someone makes such revolutionary counter-to-accepted-belief statements, they got better be able to back it up. Taubes book has over 60 pages of just reference sources. It really is exhaustively researched, going again through dietary research for the past century. His / her book led me to a few others that dedicated to carbohydrate dangers. bad cholesterol, fats and the harmful associated with statins. For those interested, here are some recommendations: Natural Health & Weight Loss , Deep Nutrition: Why Your Genes Need Traditional Food , The Statin Damage Crisis , The Modern Nutritional Illnesses: And How to Prevent Them: Heart problems, Stroke, Type-2 Diabetes, Obesity, Cancer , Cereal Killer , The Great Cholesterol Que tiene: The Truth About Just what Really Causes Heart Condition and How to Avoid It and The Primal Blueprint: Reprogram your genes for effortless weight loss, vibrant health, and boundless energy Four of these are written by MDs - informed, well educated, science background people working with current research information.
Info I uncovered left me personally shocked about how manipulative Large Pharma can be as far as pressuring doctors to use their drugs, (complete with "incentive" packages that can only be compared to flat out bribery) about how they fund their own studies and then get to interpret their own results to make certain these are favorable, and/or they can make to fail to publish anything negative. Agribusiness is also enormously influential in getting studies done, with their own highly lucrative agreements with research groups, to "prove" that oils made from their excess collect, that are cheap and highly profitable, must participate our daily diet at the cost of traditional fat. The strength the pharmaceutical industry and the agribusiness has on such supposedly reliable institutions such as the American Heart Association, the FDA and the NIH is not to be believed. Thus sad for all of us. The food pyramid is absolutely wrong for heart health, weight management and avoiding type 2 diabetes.
As I read these books, I began to have hope about lastly managing my own weight. Taubes book is all about arming you with proper facts, about making intelligent choices for your own dietary direction. It is not focused on the use of statins (I found that informations in other related books listed above) - rather, he could be making the point that while we've been concentrating on fat as the reason behind being overweight, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, it has really been the shift toward more carbs and seed oil intake for the last 62 years.
But Taubes is NOT offering "program" therefore. Rather, for someone like me, who really desires to understand WHY things are how they are, this is loads of information about how we happened the wrong path as far as national nutritional health advice and who was behind it all. He enables you link the spots for yourself. If instead you will rather have help with a program for redesigning your nutrition, a pair of the books I detailed are better for that, specifically "Deep Nutrition" by Doctor Shanahan, or Tag Sisson's "Primal Blueprint". Each books have at their core a target of total carbohydrate in a day of about 70 mg if you need to lose weight. Making use of these guidelines, I dropped 25 pounds in 11 weeks, without feeling hungry, and I feel excellent. I have also slowly tapered off, then stopped my Lipitor. I will not know my lab numbers for a number of months until my next check up, but I can report that my body aches have reduced, I have more energy, my short-term memory is way better and my depressed feeling has vanished.
I bought two extra copies of Taubes book and will be providing them with to both my Family Practice medical doctor and my Endocrinologist. This particular information is vital. I believe my mother would have remained her normal self until her moving if she was not given a statin and I also believe we could have got the joy of having her longer if any of us (including her doctors) had fully understood the implications of the carbohydrate laden low-fat diet she consumed for many years.
Very good luck to you. Be well.
P. S. - An eye-opening DVD is "Food Inc. " that lays out the circumstance for how we as citizens are at the mercy of only a handful of agribusiness companies. Profit, not our well being or the the survival of family farms matters to them. Their particular influence on this government's guidelines at all levels is truly shocking.
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