How does a dietary intake of 100% animal fat mimic fasting?


by Vintageliving
Tags: nutrition, research
bobze
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Nov16-10, 08:52 PM
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Quote Quote by Proton Soup View Post
i'm not here to promote hi-carb/lo-carb/paleo/keto/etc. for the record, my personal bias would be a pretty balanced diet of lean meats, veggies, nuts, dairy, whole grains, fruits, fish, legumes, etc. with a good bit more exercise, and a slight bit more protein-% than the typical modern american diet.

but the protein myth of destroying your kidneys is just that. and what constitutes "high" protein depends on who is perpetuating the myth (promoting veganism say, versus attacking bodybuilding or paleo nutters). at this point, as you guys have pointed out, all we have is a bunch of speculation, save some things that happen in people abusing steroids that no doubt clouds the matter in the minds of docs that have formed a bias.

it would also be nice if the people that want to perpetuate the "protein is bad for your kidneys" myth would give a recommended upper limit, say in something like grams_protein/kilogram_bodyweight/day.

Well I don't know that is so much of a myth, as just a non-sequitur in the grand scheme of things; ie your more likely to die of something else before protein adversely affects your kidneys, baring degenerative renal disease. Remember we actually only need about 15% of our nephrons and since each kidney has about 106 nephrons, loosing some is hardly consequential.

It is well known however that (again reference Vander's or another appropriate and authoritative source on renal physiology) that after increases in protein metabolism (such as eating a meal) glomerular hyperfiltration happens. Hyperfiltration leads to golmerular sclerosis. Namely because AA concentrations results in the transient elevation of GFR. Hence all those nephrologists proscribing low protein diets to patients with renal disease.

However, as I pointed out, to a healthy individual this doesn't appear to be a big deal. The hyperfiltration is only transient and lasts for an hour or two. So that any sclerosis that does occur because of protein loading, has little effect in the grand scheme of things (a few nephrons, who needs 'em?)

Remember, you can actually give away a kidney which is pretty amazing (probably not as amazing of the number of organs you don't need to survive. I mean really think about what do you need? A brain, which some people do fine without, a left ventricle, an atria, a kidney, a stomach, a third of a small intestine, a pancreas, a lung and half a liver--That's pretty interesting). So because of the excessive glomerular function, high protein diets (within a realm of reason) are probably of little concern (again, you're more likely to die from something else before it adversely affects glomerular efficiency).


Edit to add; it would be an interesting "homework" assignment if anyone could find a cohort study comparing renal disease in people in the west (high protein diets) and people in developing countries (low protein diets). It would be interesting to note if the increase in life expectancy (something evolution clearly didn't plan for) is problematic with nephron destruction over the longer life span. With such a excessive amount of nephrons, I still would doubt that our GFR and glomerular function would be adversely affected--I don't think we've increased life-spans to such excessive amounts yet. Maybe one day, 10 generations from now, it will be more of a concern (assuming those future people can just make their own new kidneys :))
bobze
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Nov16-10, 08:53 PM
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
On the contrary what lives on is your myth, that high protein is somehow harmful. Unless you have some kidney problems to start with, there is absolutely no evidence that high protein is bad for you.
See the post above. Please reference a renal physiology text book. Not a blog.
bobze
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Nov16-10, 09:15 PM
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
Wow, you're saying everything Gary Taubes does He is not a diet guru BTW. His only interest in nutrition arose because someone pointed him out to the pathetic quality of the research there. Since you claim to be such an expert, I am sure you know about Ancel Keyes and the terrible myths he helped establish, which are still the key tenets used by the establishment and doctors. Its Taubes who opens our eyes to the tons of real research and evidence there. Like I've said zillion times on this very forum, his book is like a compilation of research.
That you believe medical nutrition is based solely on the work of Keys shows to the trained eye how far removed from the institution of medicine or science you are. Like any scientist to pioneer a field (Darwin for instance), Keys got some hits and some misses. That cardiovascular disease is related to cholesterol, cortisol and many other risk factors has been shown without a doubt. Other things, he missed on.

Taubes is a physicist, for the same reason I don't take my children to to a biochemist to get their teeth cleaned, I don't "read Taubes" for advice on nutrition.

Quote Quote by Siv View Post
And most of the blogs I reference are written by doctors and experts in biochemistry. None of them are diet gurus. So even a well-intentioned medical student can learn something there
Thanks, but I'll take my 200,000 dollars or so in education and raise you one. When they introduce those "well written" blogs into medical curriculum I'll be sure to check them out.

Quote Quote by Siv View Post
We evolved to eat a lot of meat. And a few berries and tubers.
There were no grains and no refined flour (or other refined carbs), sugar or HFCS for more than 90% of our evolutionary history. In fact, right upto the early 1900s, the common sense approach of weight loss was to avoid refined carbs and sugar. Its only after Keyes and a few others started spewing nonsense and the media gobbled it up that the tenets changed.
Again, showing you are well removed. We didn't evolve to eat a lot of meat. Only recently in history has our diets included so much protein. We evolved to eat seasonal varied diets of starches (carbohydrates, from wild grains, fruits, etc) lean meats (not all that often) and animal fats (again not all that often). You are of course welcome to go spend some time living in any of the tribal villages removed from modern society and feast upon this bounty yourself.

Or, maybe you should spend some time in an anthropology library.....
Yanick
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
Wow, you're saying everything Gary Taubes does He is not a diet guru BTW. His only interest in nutrition arose because someone pointed him out to the pathetic quality of the research there.
So he felt that the research in the area of nutrition was pathetic so instead of trying to do his own research to advance the field he went out and cherry picked the research that allowed him to write a book and make tons of money? Are you not seeing the paradox in this?

Quote Quote by Siv View Post
We evolved to eat a lot of meat. And a few berries and tubers.
Actually we evolved as omnivores. Meaning eat whatever you can get your hands on because humans, as purely physical specimens, are pretty low on the food chain.

Don't believe me? Compare your teeth to a true carnivore, like a lion. Notice a difference?
Borek
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Nov17-10, 02:52 AM
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Please everyone - it was a nice read up to now, but I feel like it is getting emotional.
Siv
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Nov17-10, 08:22 AM
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Looks like people have a problem with Gary Taubes. Maybe because he is not handsome enough. Why else would people dismiss him without even reading his book ?

Maybe they have something against science writers. Or only a science writer who has won the Science in Society Award of the National Association of Science Writers three times and was awarded an MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellowship for 1996-97.

Is science practised differently in nutrition than in other fields ?
I know the quality of science in nutrition is pathetic but last time I checked science worked the same way

Read his book and refute the tons of evidence in it. Ad hominem continues to be a logical fallacy.
Siv
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Nov17-10, 09:23 AM
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Quote Quote by bobze View Post
That you believe medical nutrition is based solely on the work of Keys shows to the trained eye how far removed from the institution of medicine or science you are. Like any scientist to pioneer a field (Darwin for instance), Keys got some hits and some misses. That cardiovascular disease is related to cholesterol, cortisol and many other risk factors has been shown without a doubt. Other things, he missed on.
The cholesterol hypothesis is an extremely controversial one. Are you sure you are up to date on that ?!

Again, showing you are well removed. We didn't evolve to eat a lot of meat. Only recently in history has our diets included so much protein. We evolved to eat seasonal varied diets of starches (carbohydrates, from wild grains, fruits, etc) lean meats (not all that often) and animal fats (again not all that often). You are of course welcome to go spend some time living in any of the tribal villages removed from modern society and feast upon this bounty yourself.

Or, maybe you should spend some time in an anthropology library.....
Ha ha, nice joke.
Read my quote -
We evolved to eat a lot of meat. And a few berries and tubers.
There were no grains and no refined flour (or other refined carbs), sugar or HFCS for more than 90% of our evolutionary history. In fact, right upto the early 1900s, the common sense approach of weight loss was to avoid refined carbs and sugar. Its only after Keyes and a few others started spewing nonsense and the media gobbled it up that the tenets changed.
This topic is a controversial one too. The less meat and no fat theory is just one of them around. We did not eat mostly vegetable and fruit matter because our bodies are designed very differently from herbivores. Also, fruits and vegetables pre-dept stores contained a lot less starch and sugar than it does now.
The meat might have been leaner cuts, but HGs more than made up for the fat content of the muscle by eating brains, organs etc.

Here's an interesting journal article (unfortunately only abstract is free, but the full version has been discussed in some of the blogs you hate so much )
http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/381662

From the above, researchers have determined early humans’ development of “meat-adaptive” genes that helped humans uniquely process the natural fat and (in those days) inevitable parasites in meat, an ability that isn’t found to the same degree in other related primates. Once humans began consuming meat as a central diet staple some 2 ½ million years ago, the species experienced a surge in life span and competitive benefits in the fight for survival.

Here's another interesting paper by Loren Cordain (yes I know, you most likely hate him too, but he is a Ph.D in Health and Exercise ... and knows his anthropology )
http://www.thepaleodiet.com/articles/2006_Oxford.pdf

Beginning approximately 2.6 Mya, the hominin species that eventually led to Homo began to include more animal food in their diet. A number of lines of evidence support this viewpoint. First, Oldowan lithic technology appears in the fossil record 2.6 Mya (Semaw et al., 2003), and there is clear cut evidence to show that these tools were used to butcher and disarticulate animal carcasses (Bunn and Kroll, 1986; de Heinzelin et al., 1999). Stone tool cut marks on the bones of prey animals and evidence for marrow extraction appear concurrently in the fossil record with the development of Oldowan lithic technology by at least 2.5 Mya (de Heinzelin et al., 1999).
In addition to the fossil evidence suggesting a trend for increased animal food consumption, hominins may have experienced a number of genetic adaptations to animal-based diets early on in our genus’s evolution analogous to those of obligate carnivores such as felines. Carnivorous diets reduce evolutionary selective pressures that act to maintain certain anatomical and physiological characteristics needed to process and metabolize high amounts of plant foods. In this regard, hominins, like felines, have experienced a reduction in gut size and metabolic activity along with a concurrent expansion of brain size and metabolic activity as they included more energetically dense animal food into their diets (Leonard and Robertson, 1994; Aiello and Wheeler, 1995; Cordain, Watkins, and Mann, 2001). Further, similar to obligate carnivores (Pawlosky, Barnes, and Salem, 1994), humans maintain an inefficient ability to chain elongate and desaturate 18 carbon fatty acids to their product 20 and 22 carbon fatty acids (Emken et al., 1992). Since 20 and 22 carbon fatty acids are essential cellular lipids, then evolutionary reductions in desaturase and elongase activity in hominins indicate that preformed dietary 20 and 22 carbon fatty acids (found only in animal foods) were increasingly incorporated in lieu of their endogenously synthesized counterparts derived from 18 carbon plant fatty acids. Finally, our species has a limited ability to synthesize the biologically important amino acid, taurine, from precursor amino acids (Sturman et al., 1975; Chesney et al., 1998), and vegetarian diets in humans result in lowered plasma and urinary concentrations of taurine (Laidlaw et al., 1988). Like felines (Knopf et al., 1978; MacDonald, Rogers, and Morris, 1984), the need to endogenously synthesize taurine may have been evolutionarily reduced in humans because exogenous dietary sources of preformed taurine (found only in animal food) had relaxed the selective pressure formerly requiring the need to synthesize this conditionally essential amino acid.
However, there are a number of lines of evidence which suggest more than half (>50%) of the average daily energy intake for most Paleolithic hominin species and populations of species was obtained from animal foods.
Richards, Pettitt, and colleagues (2000) have examined stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N) in two Neanderthal specimens (~28,000—29,000 years BP) from Vindija Cave in northern Croatia and contrasted these isotopic signatures to those in fossils of herbivorous and carnivorous mammals from the same ecosystem. The analysis demonstrated that Neanderthals, similar to wolves and arctic foxes, behaved as toplevel
carnivores, obtaining all of their protein from animal sources (Richards, Pettitt, et al., 2000). A similar analysis was made of five Upper Paleolithic Homo sapiens specimens dated to the Upper Paleolithic (~11,700–12,380 years BP) from Gough’s and Sun Hole Caves in Britain (Richards, Hedges, et al. 2000). The data indicated these hunter-gatherers were consuming animal protein year-round at a higher trophic level than the artic fox.
Both studies by Richards, Hedges, and colleagues (2000) and Richards, Pettitt, and colleagues (2000) could be criticized as not being representative of typical hominin
diets, as these two species lived in climates and ecosystems that fostered an abundance of large, huntable mammals, which were preyed on preferentially. Additional clues to the typical plant-to-animal subsistence ratio in Paleolithic hominin diets can be found in the foraging practices of historically studied huntergatherers.
Our analysis (fig. 19.2) of the Ethnographic Atlas data (Gray, 1999) showed that the dominant foods in the majority of historically studied hunter-gatherer diets were derived from animal food sources (Cordain et al., 2000). Most (73%) of the world’s hunters-gatherers obtained >50 percent of their subsistence from hunted and fished animal foods, whereas only 14 percent of worldwide hunter gatherers obtained >50 percent of their subsistence from gathered plant foods. For all 229 hunter-gatherer societies, the median subsistence dependence on animal foods was 56 percent to 65 percent. In contrast, the median subsistence dependence on gathered plant foods was 26 percent to 35 percent (Cordain et al., 2000).
Phew, thats a lot of evidence !
cosmos 2.0
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Nov17-10, 09:29 AM
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
We evolved to eat a lot of meat. And a few berries and tubers.
There were no grains and no refined flour (or other refined carbs), sugar or HFCS for more than 90% of our evolutionary history. In fact, right upto the early 1900s, the common sense approach of weight loss was to avoid refined carbs and sugar. Its only after Keyes and a few others started spewing nonsense and the media gobbled it up that the tenets changed.
Type of food people eat varies from region to region. Even the last five to ten thousand years , when agriculture had made grains a staple diet people began adapting to it, so this also is part of our evolutionary history. our body can use carbs effectively as fuel. Refined carbs are just as bad as trans and hydrogenated fats or red meat. There is a trend to blame one type of diet for all the health problems. It has happened before, it is happening now.
cosmos 2.0
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Nov17-10, 09:43 AM
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
From the above, researchers have determined early humans’ development of “meat-adaptive” genes that helped humans uniquely process the natural fat and (in those days) inevitable parasites in meat, an ability that isn’t found to the same degree in other related primates. Once humans began consuming meat as a central diet staple some 2 ½ million years ago, the species experienced a surge in life span and competitive benefits in the fight for survival.
As i said in the previous post, we adapted to a diet of grains thousands of years ago. So it is part of our evolution history. I do not know how we can conclude what a particular diet did or did not do to a species. I think it becomes pure speculation when you are talking about a species two million years ago.
Siv
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Nov17-10, 10:34 AM
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cosmos 2.0, we cannot undo more than 90% of our evolutionary history that easily. The harm that grains do is well documented.
bobze
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Nov17-10, 04:28 PM
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Quote Quote by Siv View Post
The cholesterol hypothesis is an extremely controversial one. Are you sure you are up to date on that ?!
You'll note that that I said cholesterol is correlated to cardiovascular disease. I never said it is the cause or sole cause of cardiovascular disease. That its correlated to cardiovascular disease (along with many other factors) there is no doubt. Please don't make "claims" of what I'm saying.

Quote Quote by Siv View Post
Ha ha, nice joke.
Read my quote -
This topic is a controversial one too. The less meat and no fat theory is just one of them around. We did not eat mostly vegetable and fruit matter because our bodies are designed very differently from herbivores. Also, fruits and vegetables pre-dept stores contained a lot less starch and sugar than it does now.
The meat might have been leaner cuts, but HGs more than made up for the fat content of the muscle by eating brains, organs etc.

Here's an interesting journal article (unfortunately only abstract is free, but the full version has been discussed in some of the blogs you hate so much )
http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/381662

From the above, researchers have determined early humans’ development of “meat-adaptive” genes that helped humans uniquely process the natural fat and (in those days) inevitable parasites in meat, an ability that isn’t found to the same degree in other related primates. Once humans began consuming meat as a central diet staple some 2 ½ million years ago, the species experienced a surge in life span and competitive benefits in the fight for survival.

Here's another interesting paper by Loren Cordain (yes I know, you most likely hate him too, but he is a Ph.D in Health and Exercise ... and knows his anthropology )
http://www.thepaleodiet.com/articles/2006_Oxford.pdf





Phew, thats a lot of evidence !
Neither of these disagree with anything I've said. Did we evolve to eat more meat than other great apes? Yes, we sure did. Did we "evolve to eat lots meat"? No we sure didn't, as Yanick pointed out, we are omnivores and evolved on an omnivorous diet. You'll note that we (in the west) eat more protein now than at any other time of our history. You'll also note that our bodies (both physiologically and anatomically) are not the bodies of carnivores, rather omnivores. Your first article is irrelevant to your claim that we evolved to eat "lots of meat". Here's the conclusion since you didn't seem to actually read the study, only the abstract;

The evolution of the extended human life
span was achieved through selection operating
on many developmental pathways. The
chimpanzee taste for meat could have set the
stage for the evolution of genes that allowed
increased fat consumption without hypercholesterolemia.
The evident sensitivity of captive
chimpanzees to hypercholesterolemia and
ensuing vascular disease, if present in the
shared ancestor, required mutations that
allowed emerging humans to have a far richer
diet and to extend their development schedule.
We argued that the evolution of the
human apoE3 and other candidates for meatadaptive
genes enabled the shift from an herbivorous
ape diet to the more omnivorous
diet of hominids, while also enabling a major
increase in life span.
We would, of course, like to know how life
spans evolved during these changes. The fossil
record, unfortunately, tells little about
adult life spans. The schedules of dental
development suggest that prolonged postnatal
development was relatively recent. Growth
patterns in tooth enamel indicate that Neandertal
dental development approximated
that of modern humans and was slower than
in australopithecines and early humans (H.
habilis and H. ergaster) (Dean et al. 2001;
Moggi-Cecchi 2001). On this basis, Neandertals
and anatomically modern prehistoric
humans might have had longer postmaturational
nurture than early humans or australopithecines,
but we can say little about life
expectancy.
The chimpanzee genome projects (Cyranoski
2002) are being augmented by functional
genomics. As an alternative to in vivo
studies on captive chimpanzees that face
strong ethical objections (NHGRI 2002), we
note that cultured cells (fibroblasts, lymphomas,
and blood cells) are available to study
human-chimpanzee differences (e.g., Karamen
2003). In vitro models can also be used
to study gender-hormone interactions on cell
metabolism, which are indicated by the sensitivity
of female chimpanzees to obesity (Steinetz
et al. 1996). Expression profiling for species
differences in response to dietary and
stress factors could identify genes that confer
protection against chronic diseases, some of
which might also facilitate the greater life
spans of humans. At the same time, as elegant
technology is applied to human evolution,
there is a major need to study the natural history
of aging in the endangered wild chimpanzees
and to identify which aspects
Again, we certainly evolved to eat more meat than chimps, that doesn't mean we evolved to eat "lots of meat". The article deals with how gene changes for that increased meat consumption had to have happened to mitigate the potential dangers of higher fat diets...
Siv
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Nov17-10, 07:54 PM
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I would consider more than 50% as "lots of meat", but if thats just a quibbling over semantics, so be it. We are in agreement then.

In any case, its then quite obvious that our evolutionary diet was a low carb one. Not zero-carb, no (and I never said that) but definitely low carb.
Yanick
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Nov17-10, 09:13 PM
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Last comment from me in this thread and I'm done because this particular conversation may turn ugly at any moment.

I have not, and doubtfully ever will, read the Taubes book. See he, and all the other paleo/low carb nuts, make money doing this. It is their career. I cannot afford myself the time to sit around reading papers all day to refute all the evidence put forth by them. That is not my job, I don't make any money doing it, it will not further my career, therefore I am not going to start throwing papers, blogs and abstracts around with you (I have to do some experiments which are new to me, as well as study for midterms/finals, spend time with the better half and try to squeeze sleep in there somewhere).

The bottom line is that what these guys are saying is not really 100% wrong therefore you can't exactly refute everything they say. I mean think about it. How many overweight/obese or even regular people do you know that won't benefit from eating less processed foods, increasing vegetable intake and doing some consistent exercise?

The problem I have with these guys is the fact that they attribute half of the world's problems to a single food group. It is just unforgivable for a scientist to go around saying that X causes cancer, obesity, laziness, global warming, war, poverty etc. I've seen too many of these "eat this, not that" "this is good, that is bad" types of books. The former is actually a book mind you, my buddy has it and it tells you to eat McDonalds hamburgers over Burger King (or something like that) because they have something like 5g less fat.

If you want to live your life "paleo style," go get a spear and a loincloth and live in the forest, eating whatever you can catch and gather.

See the thing that most of these gurus don't tell you is that losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle has to include a multitude of factors. They include eating less in general (I'm speaking of overweight people here, obviously someone who is 6 foot and 100 pounds probably needs to eat up!), staying away from processed foods, eating more fruits and vegetables, getting consistent exercise, staying hydrated, coping appropriately with stress and the list goes on and on, though I think I got the big ones.

One of the most important things, IMO, is really the ability to let go every so often and just enjoy yourself. Drink some booze, eat a pizza, slurp down HFCS if that is your thing. Do whatever it is that makes you feel good and allows you to blow off some steam and relax. Because honestly, if there is truly one factor that slowly kills everyone, that is the stress response. You can go read "Why Zebras Get Ulcers" by Dr. Robert Sapolsky. Now that's an amazing book! The important thing about 'letting go' though is that you have to be able to control yourself and make that a minor occurrence in your life.

This is getting into the realm of psychology/philosophy but I'll leave you with this little tidbit of info, which took me about a decade of extreme behavior to realize (and in some ways I'm still trying to apply it). Everything in life has its place. The key to living healthy and happy is finding a balance between the almost infinite amount of variables which affect your life. That's all I have to say on this subject.

EDIT to add: If you really want to learn some physiology as it relates to nutrition, you should check out Lyle McDonald. That guy really knows his stuff, stays on top of the latest research in weight management and, my favorite part about him, is not afraid to admit that his views change when the scientific landscape changes (he's pretty straight forward about it too, sometimes a bit too straight forward [anyone who frequents or used to frequent his site(s) knows what I'm talking about]).
Siv
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Nov17-10, 10:02 PM
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One word Yanick. Evidence.
Greg Bernhardt
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Nov18-10, 12:55 PM
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http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/21/ma...pilepsy-t.html

Interesting related article
Siv
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Nov18-10, 10:05 PM
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Hey, thanks Greg.

Here's one more recent article from Dana Carpender's blog

http://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Sci...ition-experts/

Excerpts:
During a symposium called “The Great Fat Debate: Is There Validity In the Age-Old Dietary Guidance?” at the American Dietetic Association’s (ADA) Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo, four leading experts presented evidence suggesting that low fat diets may be less healthy than those containing at least a moderate amount of fat. In particular, all four agreed that replacing saturated fat with carbohydrates – as has been widely recommended in the United States – is likely to raise the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Chair of the Harvard School of Public Health’s nutrition department Dr. Walter Willett takes this even further.


“If anything, the literature shows a slight advantage of the high fat diet,” he said. “The focus on fat in dietary guidelines has been a massive distraction…We should remove total fat from nutrition facts panels on the back of packs.”

He added that while the pervasive dietary guidance given to consumers has been to eat fats sparingly, to load up on starch and eat non-fat products, “the food industry quickly realized sugar was cheaper than fat and laughed all the way to the bank.”
Its time for more research into the subject. Lots more open-minded research. Not funded by the food or drug industry.
dreiter
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Dec5-10, 06:32 PM
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I don't know why there is even a low-carb/high-carb debate! The large majority of studies I have seen point to a balanced diet of carbs, fats, and proteins. As a general rule, extremes are never good. Naturally we want to intake the foods that science has found to be the healthiest for us to eat. Now when you look at a steak and compare it to an orange, you see a protein and a carb. But you also see the nutrients contained in those calories. An orange has many more vitamins, minerals than the steak does, and also contains fiber and phytochemicals, both of which have a long history of promoting human health.

So what is healthier, a carb or a protein? Well obviously you don't want to eat just one, but I would certainly suggest eating many more oranges than steaks...


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