Response to Moore/Kosloff Podcast II: Commentary

These days I choose the LLVLC podcasts I listen to wisely and having read Beyond Caloriegate etc. would likely not have tuned into LLVLC Episode 559: Adam Kosloff Says It’s Time To Move ‘Beyond Caloriegate’ were it not for the heads-up that landed in my Inbox informing me that Adam had mentioned me (it's around the 16 minute mark).   So I listened to it and, in light of our correspondences, was left with a bad  taste in my mouth.     So, a couple points in that regard that concern me, some general comments on the whole podcast, this "overstoring" in the "black box" concept and such, and Oh the antagonism!!  Perhaps we need to have "drinking game Sundays" here at the Asylum where I serve up Cherry Pickin Martinis (Taubes), Spiked Pink Leptinade (Rosedale), Frozen Leptin Drops (Kruse), F'en Wheat Belly Buttons (Davis), and I'll have to dream up a few more (feel free to contribute ideas in comments!!).  We'll call the game "antagonism".  You know the game ... ever play Bob?  Participants will have to do a shot every time Jimmy uses the word  antagonism.  But I digress ...  

When I listened to Adam, it seemed to me as if he took a page out of Taubes' book and was portraying me as someone he reached out to to find common ground, but I would have nothing to do with it, or I was somehow not interested in working for the better good, helping people, etc.  I'm getting really tired of this meme.  That the only way one can be productive in this broader community is by biting one's tongue and going along with some perceived "movement" and work from common ground.   Who gets to decide what helps others anyway?   I happen to believe I've helped a lot of people with my work.  However I don't feel the need, like apparently some others do, to repeatedly pat myself on the back and tell people every chance I get.

My point to Adam was that the impediment to sitting down and hashing these things out is not me.  It's "his side" in general, Taubes specifically.  I am willing to join any public forum at any time to discuss the science.  I -- at considerable risk to me, some cost (I didn't have a mic/headset) and requiring a good deal of preparation -- agreed to go on Jimmy's podcast on the premise that it was to discuss my issues with Gary Taubes' theories.  I did not go on to discuss Gary Taubes the man.  I went to discuss what I had been blogging about which was misrepresentations of the science.    Although I had mentioned to Jimmy that I'd like to discuss my own journey, I was basically blindsided by the amount of time he spent on that -- the Twinkie diet?  I had no desire to discuss that, I'd have much rather spent more time discussing the science.  I did not say a negative thing about Taubes.  I carefully read excerpts from Taubes' own references that clearly countered what he cited them for in GCBC.  Jimmy Moore did not ask Taubes specifically about the points I raised and Taubes, in what many will now recognize as typical asshat (or is that a$$hat) fashion, saw fit to attack me personally in his response.  

The major reason I posted all of the exchanges between Adam and myself was because of the characterization in the podcast that my goal was to "destroy Taubes".  Since practically the inception of this blog folks have been lobbing accusations at me that I'm a Taubes hater and whatnot.  That all I do here is write posts bashing the man.  This is a charge I've addressed time and again here, and just yesterday I received yet another of those well meaning comments advising me to stick to my insert complimentary adjective here  pure science posts and basically STFU about everything else.  It really makes me wonder sometimes because those posts do now get read by a growing number of regular readers, but clearly many of the people doling out such advice only read the posts they are advising me not to bother writing.  I've addressed this many times, from the very first accusations, pointing to the number of posts on this blog.  When Taubes called me a stalker and Fat Head called me mentally unstable for commenting on someone else's blog and claiming my blog is just anti-Taubes, and time after time, I've pointed out the number of posts here.  Yes, there are a lot of posts that fall under the Gary Taubes Fact Check label, but the vast majority of those are posts on studies I've found that were of interest to me and that I thought would interest and perhaps even be helpful to my readers -- that just so happened to also refute some Taubesism.  IOW, not posts devoted to GT, just posts that add to the mountain of evidence countering TWICHOO.   So at this point the number of posts exceeds 700, and those devoted to TWICHOO specifically number perhaps 50?  I don't know.  I haven't counted them up.  Perhaps we can see what percentage of Taubes blog posts directly concern Stephan Guyenet and then we'll talk about who's obsessed with destroying whom?  Just a thought ...

In any case, I'm not out to "destroy" anyone, and I think Adam is being a bit insincere here about how regretful he is about that, and here's why.  When I took offense to how he characterized mine and Stephan's and JamesK's blogs in his ebook, Adam said he regretted that.  And he was "pre-apologetic" about his mockery of "calorie wizards" too.  Yet that came out again in the podcast.  You only get so many "I didn't really mean to say it that way" outs before you own it.  So I think Adam wants to have it both ways and he basically said how he really feels about me, so I'm not buying the nice-guy schtick.  Perhaps the community would be better suited if he and I discussed aluminum extrusion (as an MS in Materials Science/Metallurgy  I'm well versed to hold up my end of that conversation, though I'd rather talk the corrosion behavior of aluminum) if we meet at AHS12.  I would like to see the day when discussing obesity and fat metabolism the name Taubes never enters the discussion, but there are a lot of people whose livelihood depends on it living on ... including some new/late comers to the party.

So anyway, Adam seemed to take my citing the number of blog posts a different way -- that somehow I'm this frustrated blogger who nobody listens to that needs him to come to the rescue so that everyone gets listened to for the greater good of whatever.  This is odd, really, because no doubt a traffic blip from my blog to the post of his I linked to is what prompted him to "reach out" in the first place.  I don't see where I made fun of him in that first blog post, and if I made fun of anything in my "Insulin Wars" installment referencing his comments it's over the whole Yale-educated, and I studied physics and even I don't understand thermo thing.   Please Adam, I'll ask you publicly here, don't go down that path of psychobabble analysis, K?  I don't really think you want to go "there" in the opposite direction ...  This did set his partner Jimmy up nicely to discuss the whole antagonism thing tho.

Here's my public offer:  You want to discuss the science?  Have me on your podcast again Jimmy.  What are you afraid of?  Have me and Gary Taubes on "Ask the LC Experts" to duke it out.  Heck, have me and Adam on that podcast to discuss this overstoring concept.   [Oh wow!  I just looked again ... my podcast was sponsored by none other than Adam Kosloff and his Low Carb Survivor's Guide! (Oh ... and Primal Fuel!  LOL)  You're welcome Adam.  Glad to make monies for y'all!]   How about having me and Peter to discuss the LIRKO mouse and fasting insulin.  You KNOW people will listen.  If the number of comments on my podcast are any indication (ahh but you have scrubbed them clean, lovely of you Jimmy), it was widely listened to.  I'm not the one censoring and hiding from this discussion.  I've never been anything but civil towards you Jimmy Moore and you squandered that -- along with the good will of so many who have tried to help you over the years.  If those who don't buy into TWICHOO are such confused idiotic bafoons, you can make a laughing stock of us!  

So, let's talk about Beyond Caloriegate for a minute.  Something I didn't really want to do after Adam provided a copy of the book to me, because I really have nothing good to say about it but I didn't feel like criticizing him either before listening to this podcast.  Don't waste your money.  You never learn what's in the black box, what to count, nothing.  All you learn is that to be really really *smart* you need to denounce calories and embrace this nebulous repackaging of TWICHOO.  For $15 (or $9.99 with coupon from Jimmy) you can read a lengthy, repetitive, rallying cry for the Insurgency!  We must not go back!!  The Calorie Wizards must be defeated!!  I don't get this guy folks.  Out of one side of his mouth he's all Tony Robbins and John Gray (LC'ers are from Mars, CarbSane is from Venus?), then out of the other comes the gem from the podcast:  To be on Adam's team you have to denounce CICO.  Nevermind that this would exclude the likes of Dana Carpender, Eades ... heck, a sizeable portion of the LC & greater paleo community if not a sizeable majority of same.  Double heck, this would exclude Jimmy himself when he's being honest about calorie counting and losing weight.

Gimme back my black box Adam.  You can't have it for your IONOsphere where antimass can be found.  Since I have a thing for Lego  Star Wars characters vs. crayon cartoons, how about the princess as CICOB (Calories In/Calories Out Believer) and Jaba as the CDS (Calorie Denial Syndrome) sufferer.

I have one question.  How does one start overstoring?  How did an entire country start overstoring en masse?  Somehow I doubt these questions will be answered.  You see, that's what we all have to put our brilliant minds together to find.   Because we need to work together to cure obesity in a decade by ... working together.  Just you can't play on my team if you believe in calories.  THIS sounds silly and ridiculous Adam.

What is the goal anyway?  Well, now Jimmy defines it as "SAD is bad".  Hey!  I'm all in there baybeeee!!  But you don't get to redefine SAD.   SAD is NOT eating the old food pyramid or the current My Plate recs.  Jimmy did not get fat eating low fat, he actually got thinner ... 170 lbs thinner.  Just because he foolishly went on an essentially fat free diet and suffered, doesn't mean sane low fat diets are unhealthy or inferior.  I'll leave the arrogant comment that came after that for another day.   For now let's just say this:  If the greater low carb/alternative nutrition/ancestral health community continues down this road where Jimmy Moore becomes some sort of arbiter of who is or is not "useful" to the movement, the movement will fall apart and/or be relegated to whacky fad fringe.   As to whether or not I "belong", I'll say this:  I'd rather be useful in whatever capacity I can be remaining true to my convictions, than be a useful idiot in a confederacy of dunces.


steve said…
I listened to the Jimmy Moore talk with Adam and felt that Jimmy was uncomfortable with the interview and Adam not answering questions about the black box. That is easy to understand: there is no explanation. Adam is a looking to make $$$ as part of the the low carb/paleo movement many of whom want to delude poor overweight souls that there is nothing wrong with them, go low carb and just stuff your face with food. Well, as you have pointed out the answer to that is:NOT!
CICO works and that is the end of the story. How else can many lose weight from different diet regimens, jenny craig, weight watchers,atkins, etc Jimmy Moore has a psychological problem with food: he is one who lives to eat to live and not eat to live. I bet that if Paul Jaminet constructed a 30 day eating plan he would lost a fair amount of weight; but of course he would never do it because after all where would he be after his weight loss? His raison de'etre would be gone. Keep correcting poor blogging ofthe science as you see it!
Unknown said…
A lot of the people who read these blogs are looking for a guru who will tell them what they want to hear.

What they want to hear is "You can have everything," which is not consistent with CICO (which is in fact the antithesis of "You can have everything"). They do not want to have to keep track of what they eat because that would require some kind of limitation on consumption.

What you need to sell is "You can have the body of a Greek God while eating as much as you want and without exercising." Then everyone will jump on your bandwagon.
I would so love to hear that science showdown podcast. I've wanted for a while a good, serious discussion/debate between folks like Guyenet and Taubes and Jaminet and etc, to actually discuss the REAL RESEARCH and what we're learning NOW about this matter. A Jimmy podcast with you on, yeah, I'd tune in!

Us vs them is not the issue. I don't think of myself as an us or a them. I just want REAL GOOD info to get out there and bad info to be shot down, from whomever it's coming from. I know I want to solve my fat problem and Jimmy wants to solve his fat problem. WE all do. The best way we can live with.

So, I want the real weapons and info to do that the healthiest and best way, and dare I say the most livable compromise within the "healthiest and best" way. I look to the amateurs doing the weight loss to learn stuff about the "anecdotal" side of what works and the day to day reality of it, and I look to the science folks to give me the info to do it better, sounder, more efficiently and healthfully considering my medical needs. I need all the info, but I really could do without the cliques and obfuscations. Really.

Happy Saturday..
I know I wished there was that magic bullet, but when I finally got some success on this health/diet journey, it was accepting that I could not have it all, had to, in fact, make sacrifices, and had to move my butt when I'd rather sit and read all day. I don't fool myself that I can have it all or even most. I just want the most effective way that I can live with, not a Greek Goddess body (yeah, dream on, self), just not be one of the fat-immobilized Americans dying young.

And as much as I wish CICO wasn't part of the reality of fighting fat, I have found it is. I tried various ways of eating, but I still have to count calories. Sucks, but there it is.
Anonymous said…
"For now let's just say this: If the greater low carb/alternative nutrition/ancestral health community continues down this road where Jimmy Moore becomes some sort of arbiter of who is or is not "useful" to the movement, the movement will fall apart and/or be relegated to whacky fad fringe. As to whether or not I "belong", I'll say this: I'd rather be useful in whatever capacity I can be remaining true to my convictions, than be a useful idiot in a confederacy of dunces."

Very well said and my sentiments as well.

I listened to this painful interview. There is no "there" there. The black box metaphor is useful in science when we observe an effect empirically and cannot yet explain the mechanism. A good example is mendelian genetics. The rules of how genes associate combine were worked out long before we knew what DNA was.

So to say there is a "black box" driving fat storage is to imply that we have no idea how fat is stored or what determines (he tosses out hormones and enzymes as if it is all too complicated to actually discuss) obesity. OK, I am sure it is a black box to Kosloff, but what hubris to insist that it is a black box to you or me or Guyenet or Frayn or Shwartz! This guy clearly has no medical or scientific knowledge of credentials to be insisting that something is NOT KNOWN in the field of nutrition. To be making a negative assertion about the state of knowledge we have when he clearly has no knowledge himself.

(Come to think of it, GT is kind of falling back on the same tactic now, with "We just don't' know, this hypothesis has not been tested yet, etc...)

But then the true absurdity of Adam Koslof.

While insisting that there is a black box, the contents of which are unknown, or not known completely enough, he simultaneously insists that he knows that this box, definitively and without doubt DOES NOT CONTAIN ANY ELEMENT OF CALORIC BALANCE.

I know nothing special about nutrition and have no details to give you about my knowledge other than "I read a book"

I know there is a box.

The box's contents are incompletely known to everyone, including to those mistakenly who claim to know what is in it.

I am positive, even though no one really understands the black box and can make definitive statements about it, that the box DOES NOT HAVE CALORIC BALANCE as an element.

To be on my team, you must agree with me that caloric balance cannot be discussed as relevant.

This is an insane argument. Koslof could not answer Jimmys' questions because the whole idea makes no sense.

At this point, Jimmy is having it both ways. He gets the benefit of credibility for his enterprise provided by having popular interviews with Guyenet, Jaminet, LaLonde, Deans, Kresser, Masterjohn, etc. So giving the illusion that LVLC is the gateway or nexus of good health information.

Then he promotes his stupid pseudoscientific agenda by doing these data dumps on specific topics like "safe starches" where he goes to his canned list of LC experts and hucksters to fix the outcome while making it look like it is coming from the nexus of open minded health information.

It's a scheme and it works.

The quickest way for ancestral health bloggers and luminaries to stop Jimmmy from coopting paleo and ancestral health and making them mere satellites of his commercial Low carb empire is to boycott his show and stop cooperating with those stupid data dumps.

Then it will be obvious that Jimmy has an agenda that has NOTHING WHATEVER to do with ancestral health or honest science inquiry and his effort to ruin the good parts of a legitimate ancestral health movement will fail.

Between Jimmy Moore Jack Kruse the whole paleo thing has already been set back two decades.

To people entirely new to paleo, it must look like some cross between the Atkins diet and Deepak Chopra.
Thomas said…
"At this point, Jimmy is having it both ways. He gets the benefit of credibility for his enterprise provided by having popular interviews with Guyenet, Jaminet, LaLonde, Deans, Kresser, Masterjohn, etc. So giving the illusion that LVLC is the gateway or nexus of good health information."

"The quickest way for ancestral health bloggers and luminaries to stop Jimmmy from coopting paleo and ancestral health and making them mere satellites of his commercial Low carb empire is to boycott his show and stop cooperating with those stupid data dumps."

Absolutely! These excellent bloggers only help to give JM relevance and credibility when he doesn't deserve it. They want publicity (they deserve it) and he wants credibility (he doesn't deserve it). Unfortunately, this is how business is done. Boycotts usually don't stand a chance against potential or lost income.
CarbSane said…
Happy Saturday to you too Princess! Twas a rough "jolting" week back from a wonderful vacation and I'm in a little rant mood ;-)
CarbSane said…
BTW -- Well said!
Lesley Scott said…
"Just because he foolishly went on an essentially fat free diet and suffered, doesn't mean sane low fat diets are unhealthy or inferior." I know I keep harping on how annoyed I get every time a LC'er who isn't anywhere close to a desirable weight disses Weight Watchers as some kind of "low fat diet nonsense" I want to shout: "but why not try it, applying LC - er, I forget, we're now officially "paleo" - principles in the foods you eat while taking advantage of the caloric restriction built into the WW program?!" I will tell you that any of us who have succeeded at not only at losing weight but keeping it off on WW have done so transitioning as much as possible to Real Food. Plus moving around. Plus some willpower at times. And even, yes, a bit of hunger between meals. Imagine (I forget where I read someone remarking that there's nothing more paleo than being hungry, which made me laugh). This holier-than-thou, "CICO is crap!" chuckling attitude - all while being close to 300 pounds - is looney as in the Mad Hatter's tea party looney...where Taubesian Kool Aid & the other antagonistic cocktails you mentioned are being sucked down.

And people continue to be taken in by this schtick. Like the mysterious Black Box. P.T. Barnum was right.

I just listened to the Kresser podcast. Although he focused on thyroid, he did make the point that the reason LC'ers tend to gain weight when they add carbs back into their diet is that they aren't cutting back in other areas such as dietary fat or protein - ie. that "Calories-In" matters. To which Ignatius emphatically agreed that, yes, that certainly made sense. Aha, so calories DO matter, after all? Well then, which is it?

One of us on Team Evelyn should start a regular podcast with these type of experts (Kresser, Lalonde, Chris Masterjohn, etc.) just to provide some variety & balance in terms of interviewers.

Okay, sorry, off my soapbox now.
Lesley Scott said…
@KGH "it must look like some cross between the Atkins diet and Deepak Chopra" LOL. Good one!
CarbSane said…
LOL! I'm so glad the Ignatius Reilly reference there brought you two out to play today :)

@Kurt, re: boycotting, I think Thomas stated the sobering reality. BUT, I gotta think there are enough other movers & shakers already out there who can help provide these peeps with alternate outlets? Hopefully? Atkins meets Chopra -- LOL!!

BTW, I know you don't read Jimmy's forum, but I do check in from time to time to see how old friends are faring. So the post by Jimmy caught my eye where he's asking peeps to leave comments on the Facebook page for Tedx or whatever that is to have Jack speak at their upcoming event. He calls him eccentric and says it would be good to have the "wild man" speak. So ... is it about entertainment value? The quantum bullshit has got to stop!! I don't and can't expect the legit folks to shun such opportunities to spread their message, etc., but I hope the organizers of such events consider more carefully the quality of the speakers they invite/select.
Sanjeev said…
> insisting that there is a black box, the contents of which are unknown

There are valuable, USEFUL black boxes - flight data loggers/recorders that can help identify and fix problems. As Evelyn has pointed out so many times already, Jimmy actually HAS ONE and refuses to use it.

Looks like that type has slipped out of their memory and they prefer a different type.

> cross between the Atkins diet and Deepak Chopra

I've been hoping for a long time it wouldn't go down this route but my comments on various diet forums have had more and more James Randi, Steve Novella, and yes, chOPRAH and Sylvia Browne et al references. While you, Evelyn, James, Lyle, Anthony et al are more on-point on diet, the Randi connection makes it immediately clear which path they're taking
Lesley Scott said…
Okay, 'cuz misery loves company I just sat thru the podcast in its entirely. Oh. My. God.

@steve - yes, I agree totally that JM started obviously squirming toward the end, especially after asking AK point blank if you just ate a diet of, say, 10,000 cals of fat - would you gain weight? And AK couldn't answer it. In fact this "black box" is like a mash-up of what Lustig talks about (making your kid eat won't make it taller, rather s/he eats because his/her body is growing in an effort to express their genetic blueprint & reach a certain height) with Taubes's rats (were they Zucker rats?) that partition all incoming calories into fat storage & the pic of that unfortunate woman he always shows at his talks that looks emaciated from the waist up and just the opposite on her bottom half.

AK actually seems to believe that a mysterious blend of "enzymes and hormones" solely determine this overstorage, which is the BIG problem, although overfeeding isn't.


Oh, it's just Mother Nature's way of sending signals to your body, this Black Box, but science & biochemistry? Please. And yet, he has the balls to criticize "science" at length at the end of the podcast for looking for patterns & then creating "answers" that are too specific. No, we need to "buy into" (his phrase, repeatedly) a theory of insulin-as-fat-maker that's patently incorrect because it causes this "overstorage". Insulin leads to Black Box leads to Help, I'm Fat. WTF??!!

I wouldn't have thought it possible, but this is worse in many ways than that horse manure Leptinman spreads around. Honestly, Taubes has only himself to blame for opening up a can worms where non-fiction writers can simply start calling obesity researchers & scientists idiots and get taken seriously in the process.

What also struck me listening to the AK interview was his annoying post-modern approach of "there's no absolute truth!" so let's just agree to ignore what scientific truths we do observe to hold true, hop into the Black Box & march into a skinny future.

Again, WTF?
CarbSane said…
Hi Princess and Unknown ... I think everyone wishes there were a magic bullet. For sure LC has been magic for me for a good long ride, but still only got me so far. That is what I see all around me in low carb land while there are notable exceptions.
CarbSane said…
Excellent point Sanjeev -> Jimmy actually HAS ONE [his own personal black box] and refuses to use it. As in Jimmy has something a lot of people don't have because they haven't been chronicling as he has. His own logging of years of data and his body's response to it. Sad really, but there's some saying about horses and water that's nagging at me. Jimmy is stubborn. I can appreciate that as I have a strong stubborn streak myself. If he reads this I guess I'd urge him to recognize unproductive stubbornness. I'm by no means perfect about that, but I've gotten a lot better at it as the years go by.
CarbSane said…
I don't know how many take Kosloff seriously. I do recall his GCBC-lite website was popular amongst low carbers as it was filled with articles that explained GCBC concepts in more lay friendly form. I don't know how much time it takes to delete a web page, but I did point out to Adam that the G3P stuff is outdated as Taubes himself has denounced that and he begged time constraints. I haven't checked back. To his credit, it appears he's removed the non-surgical GBP and Jillian Michaels ads from his caloriegate site.
MM said…
Well, I'll volunteer some Bolonga on a Stick (Fathead) for your party. :) Sounds like fun!
CarbSane said…
Ooooh whores doovers! YAY!! Good one MM :-)
Adam Kosloff said…
Hi Evelyn and everyone else,

It's Adam.

Haven't read all the comments on this thread yet, but yikes! I feel regretful that my interview sparked this reaction. I had kinda wanted the opposite :)

You guys raise some important critiques, and I really want to address them thoroughly and thoughtfully. I'm running up against a deadline for a writing project, so please bear with me, and I'll try to respond in a few days.
Alma said…
"Perhaps we can see what percentage of Taubes blog posts directly concern Stephan Guyenet and then we'll talk about who's obsessed with destroying whom?"

Maybe he hears some truth to what Guyenet has to say so he feels threatened?

Ps, I love the idea of a showdown podcast! If only . . .
Woodey said…
I like the low carb eating, its been the healthiest eating choice I have ever made. One thing that is starting to bother me though about the low carb/Paleo movement is the amount of quackery I am beginning to see. I'm starting to see the same traits I strongly dislike from the mainstream diets now appear in the low carb community. For example, there was a person who posted on Fat Head's Facebook page claiming to be building an obscene amount of muscle naturally, by eating low carb. Out of curiosity I clicked the link and went to the person's blog site. It was obvious that he was trying to promote his products and use peoples insecurities to make a profit. He even had a picture of himself flexing with a caption that read, "If you want to have abs like me, then eat like me." He was a vulture trying to get others to buy into his program by saying a person could obtain his genetic build by eating steak instead of a spud.

So now we get people like Adam coming along peddling his wares with pseudoscience, another vulture. I'm one of those overweight people trying to shed some pounds and stuff like this really bothers me. I hate vultures and seeing others mislead by ideas that are not true. I accept the fact that I stuffed myself too many times and have paid for it, but I will not whine or blame others. To lose weight you must take in less calories than you need. If more caused you to gain it then less will cause you to lose it.
CarbSane said…
Yes, vultures is a good word Woodey! I find that quite often, even though I upped the carbs over a year ago, I still tend to gravitate towards low carb from time to time. I just don't have the interest in eating a lot of starches. I think the whole paleo movement is banking a lot more on "eat like me and you'll look like me" -- which, frankly, is better than a bunch of less-than-ideal low carbers just urging people to eat like them ....

Welcome to the Asylum!
Woodey said…
Thank you for the "welcome". :)