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Thread: Gary Taubes

  1. #11
    jeffrw is offline Member
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    Vinceh4, have you actually read the article yet? I'd also recommend the book "In Defense of Food" by Michael Pollan. Easier to read and geared more toward our "Hardstyle" training.

    It's not the carbs themselves, or the fat or protein that is the problem, as much as the TYPE of carbs, fats and proteins in our diet.

    It started in the 50's and 60's, but it worse now than ever.

    Just as an example, a piece of fruit has 6-7g of fructose.(plus other sugars and fibers) Now thanks to High Fructose Corn syrup there is 40g of just fructose in a 12oz can of Pepsi. 30-40 years ago, Pepsi had "real" sugar in it.

    You are right, there is an "x factor". But the science seems to point that the x-factor is influenced by too much sugars, chemical fats, etc.

    I mean you talk about the 60-80's generations and they are basically the first unhealthy generations. Heart disease and obesity skyrocketed with them first. So I'm not for sure your argument "proves" anything. Just because some people can, for whatever reason, overcome it, you have to look at the big picture. ANd the big picture says that generation is the first to get fat and increase diabetes and heart disease.

    The fact is, after all the convenience food you mentioned was introduced, health problems in America skyrocketed.

    Besides, it's not always an issue of "how does it effect me now?". That's the attitude that smokers have.

    it can be about cummulative damage.

    Our good hormones and metabolism trend downward after our 20's. Poor nutrition can and will exacerbate this effect leading to poor defense against diseases and cancers.

  2. #12
    vinceh4 is offline Senior Member
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    jeffrw,

    I concede that it may be the types of sugars and fats we are eating now, but Taubes strongly implies that the American diet changed because of the low fat mantra, and that this change occured in the the early 80s. Because of this change there "might" lie the source of the obesity epidemic.

    This is Taubes thesis:

    "Or maybe it's this: they find that their very own dietary recommendations -- eat less fat and more carbohydrates -- are the cause of the rampaging epidemic of obesity in America."

    I disagree with Taubes assertion that Americans increased their carb and sugar intake. Taubes says that this "increase" is the problem. I personally think it is a change of the types of sugars and fats; ie corn syrup and trans fats, among other things, which taubes does not really address. His main thrust was insulin resistance and a high glycemic diet.

    I agree that things are cumalitive and that the diets of the 60s and 70s were not healthy, but I do see a rise in obesity, and especailly in children, that has hit generations younger than mine.

  3. #13
    bender645 is offline Senior Member
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    Taubes is a research scientist by vocation so his writing is very technical and dense. However there are a couple great videos of him on the internet that spell out the themes of the book without all of the gory detail.

    The point of the book is to dispell the misapplied findings and selective reporting, not to vilify one macronutrient class.

    GCBC in a nutshell - Obesity is a disease of excess fat accumulation. It has little to nothing to do with how much we eat but is driven by WHAT we eat.

    Our ancestors evolved in a calorically sparse environment with occasional episodes of feasting. We live in a world of perpetual feasting with occasional episodes of sparsity.

    We are hard-wired to crave that which is most efficient at adding fat to our bodies because historically the ability to store fat was the key to survival. No fat = no survival = we wouldn't be here. So, in this context, carbs are good.

    Our modern problem is that for most of us it is "Autumn" (ripe fruits and harvest time) for 12 consecutive months and "Winter" never comes. Couple this with all of the evidence that shows that fat can only be burned as fuel by the body in a low insulin environment and you have the seeds for the obesity epidemic.


    In a large part Atkins/Eades/Audette and others have it right and Taubes is merely backing them up by examining the science.

    There are some great blogs with a ton of info if you want to explore this more:
    Free the Animal
    Theory to Practice
    Dr. Michael Eades
    Fat Head
    Mark's Daily Apple
    Mark Sisson

    I am sure there are others but this list will provide a lot of reading time.

  4. #14
    vinceh4 is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bender645 View Post

    GCBC in a nutshell - Obesity is a disease of excess fat accumulation. It has little to nothing to do with how much we eat but is driven by WHAT we eat.
    I agree, but it is not just carbs and sugar, imo. I do not see a correlation except for time; from the article, there is no tested correlation of diets from the 70s to the late 80s or whenever, just a correlation of time and obesity. You can only suggest a reason with a correlation, you cannot prove causality. Taubes presents one idea.

    Don't get me wrong, I am a low carb believer, but the "epidemic", as Taubes states, started with certainty in the 80s and was because of a change in eating patterns. I disagree. I think it is more nefarious.

  5. #15
    mc
    mc is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by D-Rock View Post
    You should read the book, it's good. And calories are not the issue. He cites study after study to show that the number of calories are not the issue when it comes to obesity.
    i know the work. which is why i replied

    i'm not sure if we're on the same page with respect to obesity though.

    what do you mean the cal. is not the issue here?

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  6. #16
    D-Rock is offline Senior Member
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    I just said that because you said, "but are calories really the issue?"

    Taubes contends that they are not the issue. I think the confusion comes from the title of the book. He picked a terrible title for the material that is presented. "Good Calories, Bad Calories" sounds like a diet book, which it is not. I think they called it something different in the edition that was published in England.

  7. #17
    msw
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    I believe it is called "The Diet Delusion" in England. I've read it twice and probably will read it again - it is dense and the best information is towards the end. But - it builds upon itself and is best read in its entirety.

    I really liked the historical overview in the book of the research that's been done. There are a lot of beliefs about diet, nutrition, etc. that have been based on poorly done research that indicated possible correlations - not causality. In fact, much of the research done assumes "facts" that have never been proven but become generally accepted as facts. Basically, much of the nutrition research is built on a house of cards. To me, that was the biggest benefit of the book and it spurred me on to find out more about what is actually fact vs what is believed to be fact.

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