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Old 05-21-2011, 07:49 AM   #1
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Default I'd like to read some of the science

Hi, hoping someone can point me in the direction of some information about
the importance of fat
the relative health benefits of low-fat and low-carb

I've just re-begun Nerys and India's Idiot Proof Diet (Note, Not the one that gets a bad press, this is a British one). So far, so good, 4.2lbs in 3 days. Yes, I know it's water, I'm so glad! I was bloating up like a beachball; believe me, I'm H A PP Y to be losing that bloat!

Now, I've tried this NIIPD before, did well for a few weeks then got sick and the weightloss reversed, no matter how compliant I was. I'm trying again. Last time, when I tried to find stuff to read round the whole lowcarb subject, I did find a few things but they were written in the same kind of biased tone as other diets use about low carb. I don't want to read something emotionally loaded, I'm looking for some comparative diet facts.

Is there anything anyone could point me to?
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Old 05-21-2011, 08:19 AM   #2
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Have you read Gary Taubes Good Calories, Bad Calories and Why We Get Fat?
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Old 05-27-2011, 12:32 AM   #3
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I second Gary Taubes work - as well as Mark Sisson, Robb Wolf...most of the Paleo Type ways of eating. They are, however, not proponents of low-fat, low-carb; they all promote a fairly high fat intake. If you're looking for diets that will let you eat 'low-carb tortillas', promote artificial sweetners and processed crap then they're not for you.

Fat is an important component of your diet, personally I don't agree with low-fat diets because people usually replace the fat with non-nutritive foods that lack satiety. Do your research/reading and find what works for you. I aim to keep my carbs around 150g (because I'm pregnant), after I will trim it down to a max of 100/day but ideally ~50-75g. That level has worked for me in the past. I don't limit fat or count calories unless I'm at a stall while losing then I'll track for a little while just to make sure I'm not slipping somewhere.

Best of luck to you!
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Old 05-27-2011, 03:30 AM   #4
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I read and re-read "Living Low Carb" by Jonny Bowden. He is not a proponent of low-fat, but the book is very well researched, the "science" chapters are very impressive.
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Old 06-01-2011, 07:06 PM   #5
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Hi Rosinante --

The references given are all good ones, and just today I read about this study by some Johns Hopkins researchers ... low-carb, higher fat is going mainstream!

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0601075124.htm


Also -- this is a fabulous (though long) post by Dr. Michael Eades reviewing Gary Taubes book "Why We Get Fat" and in it he reviews a lot of the science in layman's terms:

http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/l...hy-we-get-fat/
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Old 06-01-2011, 07:39 PM   #6
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If you want unbiased you definately don't want to read Taubes.

I really like Taubes for a variety of reasons but he is hardly unbiased.

My favorite mostly unbiased authors are James Krieger and Lyle McDonald. They both only utilize science and research and unlike Taubes don't heavily cherry pick studies. (I think everyone cherry picks a little which is why I say mostly unbiased.)

Krieger has a lot of free articles but has recently gone to a pay site model. Lyle has even more free articles and everything is free except his books.
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Old 06-02-2011, 11:53 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnP View Post
If you want unbiased you definately don't want to read Taubes.

I really like Taubes for a variety of reasons but he is hardly unbiased.

My favorite mostly unbiased authors are James Krieger and Lyle McDonald. They both only utilize science and research and unlike Taubes don't heavily cherry pick studies. (I think everyone cherry picks a little which is why I say mostly unbiased.)

Krieger has a lot of free articles but has recently gone to a pay site model. Lyle has even more free articles and everything is free except his books.
Lyle McDonald's blog is on my reader, but he is very exercise and training based and only talks about diet in the context of exercise. He seems to speak more to men like yourself who train hard rather than the diet needs of post-menopausal women like me (btw, I think I train "hard" for me, but Lyle and I live in different worlds.)

I totally disagree with you about Taubes. He makes his living looking at the studies and reporting them as a journalist and now as an author of books. He has the time and inclination to do this as he isn't running another business. Does that mean he's 100% right? Who knows, but I certainly think his science is stellar.
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Old 06-02-2011, 12:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CJZee View Post
Lyle McDonald's blog is on my reader, but he is very exercise and training based and only talks about diet in the context of exercise. He seems to speak more to men like yourself who train hard rather than the diet needs of post-menopausal women like me (btw, I think I train "hard" for me, but Lyle and I live in different worlds.)

I totally disagree with you about Taubes. He makes his living looking at the studies and reporting them as a journalist and now as an author of books. He has the time and inclination to do this as he isn't running another business. Does that mean he's 100% right? Who knows, but I certainly think his science is stellar.
Lyle has a ton of diet information. Go to his site, he must have 50+ articles on basic nutrtional information.

I always tell people who don't think Taubes is biased that you need to read more. His arguments are convincing because he cherry picks studies. I'm sure you understand what this means but in case anyone reading this doesn't it means he ignores the studies that don't fit into his theory.

Krieger used to agree with Taubes - but changed his mind.
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Old 06-03-2011, 02:53 PM   #9
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John P, I get your point. But if you read that study, it basically backs what Taubes says. It basically says that if you reduce carbs, you'll lose weight -- especially if you up protein. And even though supposedly each group had different plans, overall they didn't. Simply because to increase food intake in either group, another section HAD to be reduced. In Group 1, to achieve the 100%, they had to reduce the carbs from 60 to 40. Group 2 supposedly had zero which is impossible. Another issue is that neither group exposed which TYPES of carbohydrates they were intaking. Were they natural and unprocessed? No idea. So, no matter WHICH study you do or who you follow, you will ALWAYS have to read each with skepticism. Mostly because every scientist, researcher, and writer out there has their own beliefs, motives, and personal experiences. What you have to do is keep tweaking until you personally find what works for you. For some people that may be a VERY low carb diet if they are metabolically resistant or show signs of insulin resistance. For some it may be low cal. because they just eat too much. For others it may be low fat. You just have to find the right set up for your body. Doesn't mean others are right or wrong or that their science is biased, just that from what they've seen and researched, it's what's best. Because we aren't the scientists there doing the studies on our own bodies, none of it is guaranteed to be accurate. I get that you aren't a supporter of very low carb because it doesn't work for you personally, but for others, it may be the only thing that works. Me, well, I'm still figuring it out years later after two kids. But sometimes I feel as if you come across as 'attacking' those that disagree with you. I've never said anything before, but I hope that you're coming from a place of wanting to help and not to be hateful. Just my two cents.
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Old 06-03-2011, 04:10 PM   #10
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I've never argued for one diet or another being superior for an individual only that science tells us that calories are responsible for fat gain or loss. In fact I always suggest people follow Atkins or Paleo if they don't want to count calories. The word suggest is important because I agree completely people must find the plan that is going to work for them and you won't find a single post from me that refutes this.

Regarding Taubes - we're going to have to agree to disagree.
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Old 06-03-2011, 04:18 PM   #11
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One of the problems I have with much of the weight loss research, is where they get their sample population. Most research is done in Universities and hospitals. If the research is done at a University without attachment to a hospital, research, the subject pool is generally University students, and the students drawn to participation aren't necessarily representative even of college students.

Often students are paid to participate, either in money (pitiful amounts of money, but enough for a fast food burger meal or a drink or two at the local bar) or in extra credit (even if only implied brown-noser credit in their coursework).

When I was in college and grad school, there were always posters up for participation in research, and professors in the sciences and psychology departments would often make research participation a sort-of requirement in their classes. I say sort-of, because it was always technically optional, but practically unavoidable (for example the student might have the option of participating in research or a 30 page term paper, for which the rumor was that no one would ever get an A for the term paper, but participating in the research was a guaranteed A for the assignment).

What that means is that often the study population is almost exclusively young people, and biased towards young males (who were more likely to sign up for every study possible, just to get drinking money or because they needed the extra credit).

My weight loss is very drastically different now (in my mid-40's) than they were in my 20's, so I'm always looking for research with the most diverse sample pool and research using subjects my age and life experience (for example a sample pool of chronically morbidly obese patients).

The more like the sample pool you are, the more likely the research results could apply to you.
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Old 06-04-2011, 02:05 PM   #12
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I like the site Mark's daily apple. He also wrote the Primal Blueprint, but you can find a lot of info on his site.
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Old 06-04-2011, 02:46 PM   #13
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Regarding the study referred to by JohnP - the participants were normal weight (BMI 22) and young (23 years). Also the sample size was quite small, and the study design (randomized cross over) was a powerful design to increase statistical results with a small sample size. Nothing wrong with that at all. Just remember that 45 young, thin people from the southern Netherlands are hardly representative of us.

So, do these results generalize to most of the people on this board - NO.

One study rarely changes anything. Especially one with such a small number of participants who are so narrowly defined.

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Old 06-04-2011, 07:58 PM   #14
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45 people is actually quite a large number given how the study was run. That the study was run with 23 year olds only means the results cannot be applied across all populations. In the link Krieger discusses the need for an individualized approach for this very reason.

The point of the study is that many people believe that low carb provides a metabolic advantage. If that were true the results of that study would have been different.

The other point of this link specifically is that Krieger himself did a meta-analysis in 2006 reviewing over 700 studies and came to the conclusion low carb had a metabolic advantage but has since changed his mind.

This doesn't mean low carb dieting doesn't work and in fact it is probably the easiest way for most people to lose weight.
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