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Old 01-15-2016, 06:11 AM   #1
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Lightbulb Appraising Nutrition Research

Why (almost) everything you know about food is wrong

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Old 01-15-2016, 09:17 AM   #2
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Feeding Homo Sapiens: Are We Truly as Clueless as We Seem?*|*David Katz, M.D.
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Old 01-15-2016, 10:16 AM   #3
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Thanks for posting those articles.

Several decades ago, I got tired of all the claims and counter claims about what was good for you and what was bad for you. (Where are we right now on coffee? Is it good for you or bad for you? I can't keep up.) I decided to eat what I like and try to eat it in moderation. Seems to be working.
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Old 01-15-2016, 10:55 AM   #4
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Thanks for posting those articles.

Several decades ago, I got tired of all the claims and counter claims about what was good for you and what was bad for you. (Where are we right now on coffee? Is it good for you or bad for you? I can't keep up.) I decided to eat what I like and try to eat it in moderation. Seems to be working.
Agreed. Nutrition news writers often don't take into account the totality of the evidence when reporting on a study about a specific nutrient and I think it's silly for people to try to micromanage their micronutrients. You can't do that without regular blood tests anyway.

For people who are in general good health, just eat a variety of mostly whole foods and you'll be fine.
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Old 01-15-2016, 12:16 PM   #5
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I don't think as a society we know nearly as much about nutrition as we like to think we do. For one thing, I don't believe that there is a one-size-fits-all diet for everyone, and we should really stop pushing that sort of agenda onto people. When you think about it, it's astounding that humans seem to have this need to be told what we should or shouldn't eat. As far as I know, we're the only animal on the planet that has this need.

For the better part of 30 years, I followed the conventional wisdom that one should limit their fat intake, and enjoy only lean meats, whole grains, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. I also exercised regularly. For many people this recommendation works great. It didn't for me, though.

I believed the conventional wisdom. But despite this, I eventually turned into an overweight, type 2 diabetic with GERD.

For my wife and I, we've found that eating pasta, sugar (even fruit), rice, and starchy foods, and yes, "healthy whole grains," we gain weight and feel awful. Other people don't. Good for them. What bugs me is when some "authority" comes along and says we absolutely need to eat those things in order to be healthy. I can tell you without any doubt, that I look and feel much, much better without those foods in my diet.

Fat is another thing. Again, we have so-called "experts" who say that saturated fat isn't good for you, and that we should limit red meat intake. I call BS on that. In the last year and a half, I have changed my diet to include plenty of saturated fat (as well as unsaturated and monounsaturated fat), and by eating these foods am easily able to maintain my weight and blood sugar. Despite the experts telling me these foods will kill me, my blood profile looks better than it ever has, or certainly better than it has in the last 15 years (I only have records dating back that far). While I'm at it, I'll let you in on another little secret: I now consume about 50% more calories than I ever did while I was eating "healthy." Since adopting lifestyle changes, my diabetes has completely regressed and 90 pounds has melted away (my wife has lost 45 pounds and gotten her cholesterol under control). So I'm a convert.

At my last checkup a few months ago, my own doctor said (paraphrasing), "I don't know exactly what you have been doing differently since last year, but keep it up. Everything looks great." He knows a little about my eating habits because I told him. But he doesn't know everything. When I was diagnosed with diabetes, I had to see a nutrition counselor. I followed all of her recommendations to the letter for over a month and it didn't help one bit. Only by stepping out of the realm of what I call "conventional nutritional wisdom," did my health begin to return.

Despite this, I wouldn't recommend my diet to everyone. I think there are so many other variables involved, including age and genetics. While I do think there is a group of us who would probably benefit, I don't want to be "that guy." However, if someone asks me what I've done to get my health back, I have no problem sharing with them.
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Old 01-15-2016, 01:15 PM   #6
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Steve - that's very interesting. I'm glad you found what works for you.
Was it just guessing and trying, intuition maybe or did you just eat how you wanted to?
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Old 01-15-2016, 01:40 PM   #7
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Steve - that's very interesting. I'm glad you found what works for you.
Was it just guessing and trying, intuition maybe or did you just eat how you wanted to?
I started with a lot of research and reading, and, more recently, some trial and error to tweak things a bit.

This article actually got me started:
A low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet to treat type 2 diabetes

As far as tweaking, I first started on a very strict ketogenic diet, but have since been able to add back a few of the prohibited foods (tomatoes, for example) without any problem, cut out a few others (nuts and I don't get along in large quantities), and have also upped my meat intake. Despite recent media-induced cancer scares, eating meat makes me feel good, and I'm fully on board with eating foods that make me feel good.

Despite articles I read describing keto diet adherents suffering from headaches, constipation, lack of energy, etc., I found all of those symptoms to be only temporary. Within two months of being on the diet, the symptoms went away completely.

In short, when I stick to eating mostly meat, eggs, dairy, and some vegetables (all cooked with a lot of fat and oil), I feel great.
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Old 01-15-2016, 02:16 PM   #8
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Steve, much of what I've read lately, by physicians and others who actually do research, jibes with what you say. Many people overeat things like whole grain crackers, bread, etc., thinking that it's good because of the grains and low fat when they would be better off with animal proteins and vegetables.

I also believe that many people's ideas about nutrition come from marketing by food companies rather than actual knowledge about nutrition. Something says "low fat" on the label and they think that means healthy when it's been loaded with sugar and sodium. Not that I really have a problem with either; I just think many people tend to overdo it.

Just to be clear, I also think much of this doesn't apply to the people who hang out here. Since we're self-selected as being interested in cooking for fun as well as as eating well, our priorities are to make good food with interesting recipes rather than just to feed the family quickly.
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Old 01-15-2016, 02:32 PM   #9
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GG, I agree. I feel pretty much the same way.
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Old 01-15-2016, 03:15 PM   #10
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People may be temporarily duped by such products as "low fat" etc, but (at least here in UK) there are TV programmes exposing such fads. That's how I have come to know that low fat products may well contain more sugar. (I don't buy them in the first place though!)

Sooner or later the drawbacks of some food products tends to get declared and so people can then vote more wisely with their shopping baskets.
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