las

Welcome all seeking refuge from low carb dogma!

“To kill an error is as good a service as, and sometimes even better than, the establishing of a new truth or fact”
~ Charles Darwin (it's evolutionary baybeee!)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Robb Wolf: On the Role of Calories vs. Carbs/Insulin

... but it was my new-found energy and activity level that drove my leanness, not an inability to store fat in the absence of significant insulin. I think this is one of the most damaging messages that comes out of the LC camp to this day, I was duped by this, so I’m not going to do what a lot of other recovered LC writers do and make folks out to be idiots for still believing this…but, it is time to face facts. In every damn study it is clear that for fat loss we’d like adequate protein, and a calorie restriction scenario.
Robb Wolf, Dec. 2012




Houston, we have a problem.  Is a new Paleo Solution book in the works?  Because there needs to be.  So Robb was duped, but what about all of those he had a hand in duping?  Insulin is discussed in three chapters of his NYT best selling book.   
Insulin is critical in regulating blood sugar, body fat, and aging.  To live long, look good, and keep our marbles, we would do well to keep our insulin on the low side by controlling carbs and certain lifestyle factors.  {highlighted inset}
On page 66, he goes on a "Geek Rant" to drive home the notion that there is no dietary need for carbs.  On page 68 we get the "DEFCONs" about the insidious carb after he implicates the carb as the major source of fatty acids in VLDL.   I imagine that many read these chapters and took Robb's word for what he was relating.  

If Robb was duped, who duped him?  He's seems a bit holier than thou saying how he's not going to turn on the remaining TWICHOOBs out there.  I'd rather see him work to undo the duping he had a part in.  Will this be a topic for his LC Cruise presentation?  We'll see ....

125 comments:

SinSD said...

The plot thickens . . .

indestructiblewhale said...

"If Robb was duped, who duped him? "

Himself? Is it genuine, I wonder, or a way of jumping ahead of the LC mass exodus...

gunther gatherer said...

Yup, jump ship before the lawsuits start rolling in. I hope Taubes hasn't spent all his publisher's advances...

Eric said...

Duped? Probably by his burning desire to prove his hypothesis in spite of the evidence in order to sell lotsa books... and when 2.0 comes out he gets to sell more books! These guys pay no price for being horribly wrong, while his readers suffer. What a world.

I know this may not be related, but I'm really curious to know your take, Evelyn, on Robb's idea that legumes/grains are bad for you because of lectins and the like. I looked through his sources one day and actually read the papers from that section, and the evidence base seemed extremely weak for him to be making the conclusions he makes, namely that healthy people will be harmed by consuming these things. The idea that out of all the things Robb could have pointed the finger at for causing health problems, he chose LENTILS for f*&k's sake always struck me as the craziest part of Paleo (out of many crazy things).

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I've come to believe that the almost universal demonization of grains and legumes is ridiculous. Let's use a kid with a peanut allergy as an example. Responsible "do what works for you" means the kid just avoids peanuts. The "reasonable accomodations" crowd recognizes that it's not wise to have peanuts in the home and by extension in places like the classroom, etc. The paleo approach would be ALL kids need to avoid peanuts because some are sensitive to them. The kid that secretly enjoys even a healthy snack like peanut butter on celery stix is called an addict. It is all so sad.

Do you think there will be a 2.0? Seems he's branching out in different directions.

Mike said...

"I'd rather see him work to undo the duping he had a part in."

Isn't this exactly what he is doing? I don't know if you follow his podcast but he has said repeatedly that he will change his recommendations based on the evidence, even if that means people (like you, apparently) will criticize him for changing his mind.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

@GG -- there will be no lawsuits ... remember those disclaimers!

@indestructiblewhale -- I had to stop welcoming all newbies a while back as it's impossible to keep it all straight, but I'm SURE I'd remember having you post before, so welcome!

He duped himself it would seem, but I find it troubling. It is one thing to fool yourself ... we all have I'm sure! We don't all go out and write books, design nutritional programs for law enforcement and certifications, speak in countless venues etc.

I think he's straddling the fence as best he can. You can't do that forever though without some pain.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I'm not criticizing him for changing his mind. I think this post is a step in the right direction and putting it in writing! Not everyone likes to listen to podcasts or can do so when it is convenient. So I go by what's out there in "black and white". This is a good start but a bit of a cop out. He was duped? By who, and as I wrote in another response, not everyone who gets duped goes out and writes books and launches a career off of it.

I only recently acquired a copy of his book. It reached a wide audience and influenced many. Do you not think a revision would be in order? But do you think there will be one?

Eric said...

Thanks for the response, Evelyn. I'm only vicariously exposed to this stuff, mainly tuning in now and again because I know people who religiously believe some of this stuff. They started out all LCHF, coconut this, coconut that after reading Wolf, but are now all into the "safe starch" thingy which sounds more like Jaminet to me (white rice is suddenly ok, but oh noes, not brown). Basically, not LC anymore, though they're still very much into the wonders of fat. I don't think you could even call it Paleo anymore, though they still do for some reason. It seems like more of a fixation on supposed "toxicity" to me.

I guess the key part of Robb's post is for his future direction would be where he says "The insulin resistant, crack-addicted individual really benefits from LC, I cannot say that sufficiently, and the ease with which people lose weight (fat) on these programs is remarkable, but insulin control takes a backseat to calorie reduction via highly satiating foods. This whole situation further damages the ability to push ketosis as a therapeutic treatment for everything from cancer to neurodegenerative disease."

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

PS. I'm not saying the "converted" are any better to trash the as yet unconverted, but a lot of the "new" evidence against TWICHOO is over two years old, and it's not like it's all really "new" as quite a bit predated his book.

Mike said...

Can you pinpoint an individual who originally duped you into believing low carb was effective for weight loss? Maybe with your eidetic memory you can but I doubt most people would attribute their own duping to a specific person. How you come to a viewpoint is usually a long a twisted journey.

Yes, Robb influenced many and generally for the better. A revision to his book is in order and I don't doubt that when he writes it, he will be changing his recommendations.

TWJS said...

Eric,
As to the 'dangers' of legumes and grains Mat Lelonde did a nice job illuminating this concern on a Chris Kresser podcast several months ago.

Turns out they are not so problematic:
http://chriskresser.com/rhr-what-science-really-says-about-the-paleo-diet-with-mat-lalonde

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

@Eric, yeah that quote stuck out at me. I responded there via Facebook -- that equating carbs to crack is damaging. Or something like that.

The paleos have a real problem with all of this because "X is toxic" or "Y is bad" and "find what works for you" just conflict. You're creating a bunch of people who needlessly stress over damaging themselves eating a bowl of oatmeal that makes them feel (and quite often look) good. And then along will come Dr. Cate to tell us about our addictions.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Yes I can. Dr. Atkins who, in his original book put forth a new energy balance equation where calories in = calories out - calories excreted unused.

It's one thing for me to have fallen for that, but I never

Have you read Robb's book? It is a rough read for me. SO much wrong presented as "education" and "fact". Even Taubes uses "probably" a lot. Robb stated affirmatives.

I also have NO issue with changing recommendations -- it's his facts he'll have to change. That will be next to impossible, as it will/would be equally for Sisson. If not insulin, what will Mark blame now? Robb?

Mike said...

I haven't read Robb's book so I can't really comment on what he said there. I've listened to every episode of his podcast and he has always encouraged carbs post-workout or in a cyclic fashion. He, along with many, bought into TWICHOO to some degree and recommended it for weight loss. Fact is, for many people it does the trick, even if the science behind it is BS. That's why many people are slow to change their minds. At least Robb is changing his and putting it on the air and in print.

anotherdeadletter said...

"We don't all go out and write books, design nutritional programs for law enforcement and certifications, speak in countless venues etc. "

That's why I can't help but raise an eyebrow at the sudden revelation. A guy advocating a return to a more ancestral diet supports an idea that flies in the face of many things we know about said ancestors? And he stated it all so unequivocally... Maybe he knew it wouldn't swing without a Big Bad for people to blame their problems on.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I can see how my criticism might seem more harsh for someone who hasn't read his book. I myself had no idea what he wrote there until very recently. Same for Mark Sisson's PB. Sisson has "evolved" over time and softened and shifted stances ... but have you seen his book? He says "it's all about the insulin" several times.

Yeah, it does the trick and those people go forth and spread the good word. They've been duped. But you gotta wonder how long Robb was even singing the LC praises as his own health/results suffered.

Mike said...

Sudden revelation? His view on carbs has been evolving for a long time. It's all in the podcasts.

Sue Staltari said...

"I was duped by this, so I’m not going to do what a lot of other recovered LC writers do and make folks out to be idiots for still believing this…but, it is time to face facts. In every damn study it is clear that for fat loss we’d like adequate protein, and a calorie restriction scenario."
Robb Wolf

I commented that its not about making out folks to be idiots but getting them to face facts also. The recovered LC writers are helping do this and constantly get attacked for it. I said maybe Robb you think you are an idiot for being duped for so long I know I do. Its just about setting things right now.

Mike said...

It's been many months, if not close to a year, that Robb has been saying that he shifted away from LC because it started affecting his own health/performance.

I think your criticism is harsh because you apparently haven't been following what he has been saying about the subject.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Mike, I would agree with you that this is hardly sudden, but this is where the "multi" in media comes in. Robb has a website, podcast, books, speaking engagements, other projects. I realize this must be uncomfortable for him, but he'd do better to just rip the bandaid off rather than pull around the edges every which way. I didn't come from the paleo side of things and until this past summer I had no clue what he said or wrote other than that he was pretty popular in LC circles (therefore LC) and his website used to have a cartoon with a scientist and a cat. http://www.drivethroughplease.com/media/fitness/graphics/random/RobbWolf.png
Then the shit hit the fan with Kruse in May and Robb was caught up in it as Jacko reached out to him. So I learned a little bit about Robb and his positions. And then there was the backlash against the carb-rebels and some were saying paleo was never LC and others said wait-a-gosh-dang-minute-see-here! Robb was a pretty staunch low carber, as was Mark -- arguably the two most "mass media" influential in the community.

This is a step in the right direction. I'll wait and see ...

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Oh but I have been trying. It is impossible to follow all media and his podcast is a lot of Q&A with listeners that's just not generally my cup of tea.

Why is he going to headline this year's LC Cruise? Really. What is he going to say??

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I totally understand getting duped. I, myself, was duped by Atkins. It's one thing to follow a path, and sing the praises of what is working and all that. It's quite another to write books and such of one's own perpetuating and building upon it. The problem is the tone of speaking from a position of authority. Robb's book speaks in certain tones. This hormone DOES this, that hormone DOES that, paleo man ATE this, doctors ARE stupid.

It's great he's changing, but he will have a tough road because he will have to take back a lot of what he said was fact. And he's still playing the "former research biochemist" card that his former logo played off of that added the gravitas. Trying to have it all ways till Sunday :(

Sue Staltari said...

I understand getting duped too and yes he has a tough road ahead. But having a dig at the recovered LC writers was silly.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I don't know him very well ... my first "personal" interaction was his tweet about Kruse and how someone had gone too far and was an idiot. Umm... I think he still has egg on his face a bit from that.

Mike said...

I don't know. IMO, his podcast is his primary venue and the books, website, etc. are all secondary. He'd probably be the first to admit he could do a better job communicating with all the other media.

I just did a little digging and found this from June, 2010:

"Paleo, Primal, all this sort of stuff, it's kind of carb agnostic"

http://robbwolf.com/2010/06/22/the-paleolithic-solution-episode-33/

I'm not sure if that predates the book and while he's always been friendly to a LC approach, he's certainly never been dogmatic about it.

anotherdeadletter said...

He's most exposed through the PS book. When you see Paleo recommended and advocated, it's usually the book that's suggested. Your average dieter does not put as much legwork into analyzing programs as you might. They don't watch podcasts and probably don't read his blog.

"Sudden" is hyperbole, but the revelation--not that I think it was one--was surely better communicated in the book itself.

Sue Staltari said...

I used to listen to his podcasts all the time but got busy.

Galina L. said...

Well, it is ridiculous to think that everyone should be eating a LC diet. I didn't read Rob Wolf's books as well.

Gys de Jongh said...

The recent American Diabetes Association (ADA) guidelines, drafted in the light of 150 years of experience in the dietary management of diabetes, conclude that we lack the evidence needed to reach a conclusion [3]. Will we ever find the right answer? Or are we asking the wrong questions? From an historical perspective, it is easy to see that the investigators of diet have confused circular motion with progress. The very low carbohydrate diets of the pre-insulin era yielded to the high carbohydrate diets of the late 1920s and 1930s, and these gave way to the free diets of the 1930s through to the 1950s. The cycle then resumed with the low carbohydrate diet of the 1960s, the high carbohydrate/high fibre diet of the 1970s, the free diets of the latter part of the century and the reincarnation of the pre-insulin regimen in the form of the Atkins diet. The enthusiasts have come and gone, each claiming unique virtue and spectacular success for their own particular regimen, and it would be hard to imagine a diet that has not at some stage constituted an article of faith in diabetes management.

The Springer link leads to a preview of 3 pages

Diabetologia. 2009 Jan;52(1):1-7.
Diet, delusion and diabetes.
PMID: 19018511

Ever seen this ?
http://www.amazon.com/dp/159184472X
The Half-life of Facts: Why Everything We Know Has an Expiration Date

Gys

Josh said...

That diet and diabetes paper has a classic one liner in it - "Diet has always generated passion, and passion in science is an infallible marker of lack of evidence."

Josh said...

Another classic bit - "Affluent humans eat more than they need, gain weight and try to shed it, develop diabetes and try to control it. There will always be those to tell them that they can lose weight without eating less, in defiance of the laws of thermodynamics, and that one particular diet is better for diabetes than all the rest. Since the familiar diets will already have been tried, these already carry the stigmata of failure. Novelty is thus the essence of dietary advice and, given that there are relatively few possible permutations of carbohydrate, fat and protein, such advice will no doubt continue to be recycled ad infinitum."

BigWhiskey said...

Tamales, Rice and Beans for the Holidays, for sure! Salud!

Gadfly said...

Evelyn focussing on semantics rather than the intention behind someone's gesture? One more way to tell the world will continue on as before, I guess.

Derek H said...

Not to mention, the podcast is more personal because he is answering personal questions and addressing personal issues. My opinion is the book, and I hate to say this because I've always enjoyed Robb's work, seems to be a "striking while the iron's hot" moment. Which you can't blame him. His podcast I've always found valuable, and he does it for free and has only recently added sponsors.

His past carb position seemed to always be post workout, and ramp it up depending on intensity. It's hard to cater to a mass audience.

Simon Carter said...

Robb is working on updating his book. His opinions evolve over time as he learns more. I like that about him. He doesn't like conflict and getting into pissing matches with people. He is a former vegan, was heavily involved with Crossfit in the early days, was a graduate student of Loren Cordain and is a "rock star" in Paleo World. He brings a lot to the table. He comes from an athletic performance background and is a gym owner. I don't have him in the "how do we cure obesity" category as you, Taubes and Jimmy Moore.

g2sb said...

I am uncomfortable as a one-trick-pony commenter, but apparently comfortable enough to post this comment.

Here is Rob Wolf on 13 December:
http://humanfoodproject.com/can-a-high-fat-paleo-diet-cause-obesity-and-diabetes/#comment-185

Here is Peter Attia on 19 December
http://eatingacademy.com/weight-loss/is-a-low-fat-diet-best-for-weight-loss#comment-23515

Here is Stephan Guyenet on 7 November (You have to read between the lines a bit.)
http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2012/11/why-do-we-eat-neurobiological.html

Here is Andrew Weil on 11 October
http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2012/11/why-do-we-eat-neurobiological.html

Here is Ian Spreadbury, published on 4 July (Prompting Weil's October posting)
http://www.dovepress.com/getfile.php?fileID=13214

Here is Jeff Leach on 24 June (Prompting Wolf's December comment)
http://humanfoodproject.com/can-a-high-fat-paleo-diet-cause-obesity-and-diabetes/

Here is Ray Cronise on 20 June
http://hypothermics.com/2012/06/no-guts-no-glory-part-2/

Ray Medina has some fully-formed opinions in this area and, while some of his ideas are likely incorrect or incomplete, his blog is always interesting:
http://syontix.com/

And here are four very recent inks that are not ground breaking, but are fun to read and consider:
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-12/asfm-abm121912.php
http://jb.asm.org/content/early/2012/11/05/JB.01384-12.abstract
http://www.nature.com/ismej/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ismej2012153a.html
http://www.usaprepares.com/health/scientists-link-obesity-to-gut-bacteria


What do successful ad libitum weight loss diets - including paleo, VLC, potato-only, and volumetric - have in common? All seem to benefit from at least a partial restoration of satiety signaling in the autonomic nervous system. One wonders what could be causing such a restoration.

Opinions change as new thinking and new evidence emerges. That is a good thing.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

That's a must read for the weekend!

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

That's the problem with "paleo", you can't redefine how a diet was supposed to be. Some of the biochem in the book is off too, and it's not stuff for which new information has become available.

I very much admire Robb's work with law enforcement and the like. You can't argue with results, and looking the part.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

:-)

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Huh? Words have known meaning if that's what you're trying to dismiss. Intention is impossible to know, especially in a medium such as the internet.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

So what's next the Paleo microflora diet? Restore your gut bacteria to the state of our paleolithic ancestors for weight loss and health? Ha!

Sanjeev said...

> Restore your gut bacteria to the state of our paleolithic ancestors

??? how can this be any kind of real science?

And how could one possibly know which bacteria were in human guts from 1 million to 50,000 years ago?

AFAIK DNA's completely decayed in a couple of thousand years.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Not being able to possibly know with any degree of certainty how paleolithic humans ate hasn't stopped any number of "paleo" diets. So I see no reason for that to stop them now! And it would be *new* and novel and all that jazz. (Tongue was firmly planted in cheek, but we've already seen "protocols" based on paleo to alter gut flora).

Sanjeev said...

Can't wait for the "restore skin flora to optimal paleo levels diet and lifestyle",

aka the real human body odour diet ...

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I agree with anotherdeadletter (welcome!) and Derek here. The book is Robb's "face" to the outside world. I've seen him on TV and interviews, etc. He is listed as the author of the NYT best seller Paleo Solution. While the podcast is popular, most probably don't even know he has one or bother to read his blog (which is lots of guest posts these days). The thing about the book, and I'm repeating myself but it bears repeating, is that it is written in a very definitive tone. That's nothing new for diet books, but especially when you are one seeking to "correct" the idjut mainstream that has gotten it wrong with your "geek-speak", the ducks should be in a row. They weren't.

Sanjeev said...

> He is a former vegan,

I wish there were good statistics on this; my observation has been that the most strict, the most militant paleo guys were previously vegetarian or vegan.

One extreme to the other ... again, not statistically valid - I may have personally keyed into the exceptions while the paleo crowd may be statistically identical to the general populace.

Sanjeev said...

> the most strict, the most militant

many are now moderating their stance and becoming middle-of-the-road types like RW appears to be but some have gone to another round of pendulum swinging (Castle Grok, Don Matesz)

g2sb said...

Oooops, that should have been:

Here is Andrew Weil on 11 October:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andrew-weil-md/carbohydrates-weight-loss_b_1937312.html

Derek H said...

I picked up on the fact that he may subtly regret getting away from his early endeavors (gym owner, trainer) and into the book writing world of traveling, signings, promoting, defending his stance to many individuals he has never met and worked with individually, etc. It always bothered me he would participate in the low-carb cruise, but always felt it was trying to monopolize on his book sales. Money is an unfortunate temptress.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I don't think it is betraying any confidences to divulge that Robb and I had some brief email exchanges in the wake of Kruse-gate. He is very much a movement guy who wants to see paleo go mainstream. The problem is you have the big guns each with their own brand. This is why I think they've allowed the Paleo Jimmy phenomenon to fly -- he's got a brand, sure, but he provides a non-threatening platform for all to unite on. It doesn't take anything away from his brand to be on Jimmy's ATLCX podcast, or Mark Sisson to, etc. But these folks don't appear on each other's podcasts, blogs, etc. Well, I take that back, there's a bit of an incestual B-to-D list paleo circle jerk going on, but not the big names. I think Robb feels on some level that he can reach people doing the LC Cruise. I think it will tarnish his name/brand, but that's just my opinion. In headlining he's now promoting LLVLC whether he likes it or not.

Diana said...

The problem with "the right diet" curing the overeating problem, or with ad libitum eating altogether, is that some of us implicitly WANT to overeat hedonically. Evie, you posted a link to a study about this:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19419671

The majority of overweight people are people who for whatever reason, indulge in food reward (ie hedonic eating). Recommendations to find the right diet and "eat what you want" don't work for us. (I'm a hedonic eater.)

I would bet my bottom dollar that ALL LCers are hedonic eaters. They prizewinner is you-know-who, but we are all in the same leaky boat with Mr. Low-Carb Guru.

Diana said...

A question to all the Paleo people here: why isn't Melvin Konner as famous as Loren Cordain?

Konner was one of the first Paleo popularizers - in 1989! I became aware of his work because I read about his late wife M. Shostak's work with S. African bushmen (the San, I think they are now called.) They and co-authors wrote the first Paleo book:

http://www.amazon.com/The-Paleolithic-Prescription-Program-Exercise/dp/0060916354/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356106966&sr=8-1&keywords=melvin+konner+paleolithic

My own answer is that Konner retired from the popular game and is now "just" an academic. But I'd like to hear your answers.

Buried in my hard drive is a paper co-authored by Konner which had a profound effect on me. It said that one of the reasons Paleo person stayed in energy balance was periodic, regular, starvation.

This may be one of the reasons he isn't popular. He doesn't offer grass-fed BS.

Kade Storm said...

I find that on a genera level, whole grains and legumes work out for most people and large populations. Otherwise, folks like McDougall and company would not be in business and doing rather well. However, I am very interested in learning more about those who have intolerances to grains on a staple level. And by intolerance, I don't mean the "weight gain, therefore I am intolerant" argument, I mean actual intolerance that results in poor outward appearance and health conditions.

Just to get something out there now, I've had a tendency to suffer from skin inflammation, poor healing and tougher digestion on high carbohydrate intakes (especially those involving grains and legumes; even the lesser offensive ones like millet, rice and lentils), although I've always been lean across a range of foods groups.

Any place one could go to further explore this topic without getting into the 'blanket statements' crowd? Because I know that metabolic typing is presently considered bunk and the evidence isn't convincing. However, I'd certainly like to find an explanation for these outliers/anecdotes where reduced grain and even carbohydrate intake seems to help the individual's overall health despite being weight stable on any kind of diet.

Simon Carter said...

If you had asked me I would have said that "The Paleolithic Prescription" was written by Boyd Eaton. I forgot that Marjorie Shostak and Melvin Konner were his coauthors. Loren Cordain gives full credit to Eaton for turning him on to Paleo.

Kade Storm said...

True, but I don't know if I'd put Castle Grok in the same category as Don Matesz, the latter seems to have become a full on advocate of low-fat veganism with a disdain for animal slaughter and flesh. On the other hand, Castle Grok primarily relies on fruit but isn't against having some animal products in sparing quantities.

Kade Storm said...

Although I am not surprised that suffering under one extreme often provokes the individuals to seek out an oasis in the other, opposite extreme. It seems to be an observation that is in line with the research done on compulsive personalities that gravitate towards radical approaches. Hell, I'm one of 'em in a vague sense.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

I think Don's reversal is heavily influenced by the love of his new wife and getting in with that crowd. CJ/Castle Grok has not gone off the rails the other way.

Galina L. said...

"However, I am very interested in learning more about those who have intolerances to grains on a staple level"
Probably that lady http://www.lowcarbdietitian.com/index.html will fit your criteria of a person is not doing well on carbs while not having a weight issues.She is a registered dietitian btw, and as I understand you are from that industry as well.

BigWhiskey said...

The next "MoneyTree", ie Bubble? Heirloom Bacteria!

Diana said...

Not to Konner? It was Shostak and Konner's work with the San that was the start of the whole thing. I don't think Eaton did field work with the San but I could be wrong about that.

And none of them were dogmatic about the diet. "...this nutritional approach included skimmed milk, whole-grain bread, brown rice, and potatoes prepared without fat, on the premise that such foods supported a diet with the same macronutrient composition as the Paleolithic diet."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_diet

I have never heard Konner say one thing or get involved in any way with these silly diet wars. It's beneath him.

As idiotic as these wars are, and as unbearable as the people who take part in them are, I think the Paleo diet is good sense. Just remember, the Hadza's favorite food is honey....

anotherdeadletter said...

"Buried in my hard drive is a paper co-authored by Konner which had a profound effect on me. It said that one of the reasons Paleo person stayed in energy balance was periodic, regular, starvation."

I'd be interested in reading such a paper if you ever find it.

Diana said...

Can't believe i found this on my hard drive and then located it....right on Dr. Konner's website (d'oh!):

http://www.melvinkonner.com/images/PDFs/articles/Anth%20Obesity%20Brown.pdf

"The Ubiquity of Food Shortages"......

There's also some other stuff about Paleo on his site which I haven't read.

Kade Storm said...

Thanks for that, Galina. I'll certainly have a look. I am always looking for background information on why this stuff happens in order to formulate a strategy to resolve these problems as well, not just remain in a state of food-group incompatibility. The topic was kind of touched on by Mat Lalonde when he appeared on Chris Kresser's podcast -- that if one's having trouble with grains then it is better to shift focus onto tubers, but not assume--outside of good reason--that glucose is problematic.


Also, I am not a dietitian and I don't think I would wan't to carry such a burden. Perhaps my comment about helping a colleague with an article on diet implied as such, but I was actually contributing to the research and editing process.

Eric said...

@Evelyn

Lolz... oatmeal... reminds me of Wilford Brimley...

Ever see this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2hNu1I9r_1A ?

It's AMAZING!!!

chintillo said...

When you are dieting you are not in a "controlled scenario". You are at home with a full fridge near you and you are not a rat, but a human with the power to open the fridge. If you go to the high carb + caloric restriction you are going to have hunger and fail, like the millons of people that fail every day.

Your insulin and glucose spikes will bring you hunger every 2 hours and you will need to be on a diet the rest of your life or becoming fat.

To control this insulin spikes and glucose variations there are only two ways, one is make one or two meals at the end of the day or go to the paleo route for more meals.

Diana I am also an hedonic eater, and in fact I think that this way of eating is the most logical way to do if you check the human evolution.

I have also controlled hunger just eating at the end of the day during one year.

chintillo said...

"Diet has always generated passion, and passion in science is an infallible marker of lack of evidence."

Passion is the mother of science, my friend.

LeonRover said...

"Passion is the mother of science, my friend."

Yes, chintillo,

When the passion is directed to counting the teeth in "the horse's mouth" - being empirical, and not towards arguing about "angels on the head of a pin" - speculative, untested hyptheses - lack of evidence.

Gys de Jongh said...

anotherdeadletterDecember 21, 2012 3:46 PM
"Buried in my hard drive is a paper co-authored by Konner which had a profound effect on me. It said that one of the reasons Paleo person stayed in energy balance was periodic, regular, starvation."

I'd be interested in reading such a paper if you ever find it.

The paper below is not by Konner. It advocates cycles of (Feast + Rest) alternated by (Fast + Hunt). I tried it (several times) myself. My personal record is 300km on my bike on water alone in 1 week. I made the mistake to have my regular blood work done right after on of those experiments. I was out of all risk factors, nolonger Type II Diabetic. My GP was sure he mixed up patients.


http://jap.physiology.org/content/96/1/3.long

J Appl Physiol. 2004 Jan;96(1):3-10.
Eating, exercise, and "thrifty" genotypes: connecting the dots toward an evolutionary understanding of modern chronic diseases.

Survival of Homo sapiens during evolution was dependent on the procurement of food, which in turn was dependent on physical activity. However, food supply was never consistent. Thus it is contended that the ancient hunter-gatherer had cycles of feast and famine, punctuated with obligate periods of physical activity and rest.
PMID: 14660491

Diana said...

@chintillo: "To control this insulin spikes and glucose variations there are only two ways.."

Sweetie, as soon as I saw the word "only" I knew I had a fanatic on my hands.

Let me suggest this: if you have the power to open the fridge, you have the power to close it.

I lost 20 pounds by portion control. I was a rat in a maze on LC/Paleo, etc. I discovered Paleo when you were using a potty.

But thank you for spelling the word "fridge" correctly. It always irks me when people misspell it "frig."

Diana said...

PS human evolution didn't stop 50K years ago.

Diana said...

@Gys - Thank you for the link - I will read the whole thing. I just read the abstract. They appear to be saying the same thing as Konner/Brown. It's really common sense. Paleo human wasn't driving to the farm stand to buy grass fed beef.

Important note: when Paleoists talk about how Paleo society was the original leisure society, they are taking that line from Shostak/Konner's EARLY work. They were very young when they went to live with the San. They went back several times and, as good scientists, revised their initial observations. I remember reading Konner, for example (Shostak tragically died fairly young of breast cancer) writing that when he was a young anthropologist, and he'd see a San napping in the middle the day, he interpreted that as (paraphrasing) a rich guy taking a snooze. Later on, he realized that the hunter (or gatherer) was napping in the middle of the day because (a) they were exhausted and (b) it was in the middle of the bad season and there was nothing to hunt, or to gather, so why not sleep?

Don't ask me for the URL, I think it was in a NY Times article of many years ago, but I do remember this quite clearly.

The "first leisure society" Paleoists don't want to listen to the second part of the message. Which is that we outside observers bring our own preconceptions to the table, sometimes with the best of intentions, but still. A real scientist, like Konner, will admit to bias and mistakes. I have tremendous respect for Konner. In his hands, Paleo is fine. In the hands of a money-hungry huckster, not so fine.

Kade Storm said...

Chintillo,

To be fair, I've seen people on true low-fat diets with very high starch intakes and they tend to lower their glucose clearance and insulin levels as well. Also, they happen to be remain in good shape. I don't think--when speaking so generally--that low-carb paleo has the sole monopoly on insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance, in fact, I think the traditional low-fat cultures have the advantage and substantial evidence on their side.

anotherdeadletter said...

"Paleo human wasn't driving to the farm stand to buy grass fed beef. "

The romanticizing of Paleo was one of the reasons I got turned off of it, especially the Primal Blueprint division. I could never get my head around the notion the 'leisure society'. I can only imagine people who think that have never attempted to forage for food, walking miles to collect berries and dig for tubers.

To say nothing of the casual dismissal of the practice of soaking/sprouting pulses because it's "too much work". As opposed to stalking an animal for half a day, fighting it and dragging it back.

I still like the idea of Paleo, it's just, IMO, most of what you see isn't Paleo at all.

Mike said...

I'm sorry but someone getting turned off of the Paleo concept because of how one crowd interprets it is baffling to me. It's like a Catholic deconverting because he doesn't agree with how the Episcopalians interpret the gospels. That's a flawed analogy, of course, but I think it makes the point.

I think Paleo is a good starting point for identifying food that's fit for human consumption. It's certainly better than "low fat", "low carb", or "vegetarian". It also encourages good behaviors like getting off your ass during the day and getting good sleep at night. If people take it to wacky extremes or get too evangelical about it, that's only because Paleo is such a powerful concept.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

Mike ... What IS Paleo? Sisson tells us it's LC, even if he seems to have backed off on that, PB is pretty clear. But dairy is OK mostly because he doesn't seem to have a personal issue with it so allowing dairy helps with the buy in. Cordain says no grains, no dairy. He says reconstruct paleo with modern foods that used to include (not sure in new book) canola oil. Gedgaudas says we're ice age people and should never eat carbs, ever. Kruse ... well, I won't go there, but nobody paleo stopped him. I could go on but I think you get the point.

The spirit of paleo is a good start. But when you start with X,Y,Z is bad for A,B,C reasons ... cast in stone ... it's hard to "evolve".

Mike said...

I think the way Mat Lalonde's defined Paleo works well: Eat meat, vegetables, tubers and fruit in whatever proportion best suits you. These are the types of foods that we are best adapted to living on. Anything beyond that may or may not work, based on the individual. That's pretty macronutrient agnostic and can include everyone from vegetarians to carnivores. If grains and dairy are well tolerated, they can be included but they are more likely to be problematic because we have had less time to be well adapted to those foods.

anotherdeadletter said...

@Mike

I'm not turned off Paleo in nature or principle, it's the common-circle definition (or lack thereof) of Paleo that has turned me off. Study of our ancestors is ongoing and ever-changing yet quite a few of these gurus refuse to adapt to that or pick and choose things to suit them.

Just sort of a ramble: How does one say do not eat this or that because it wasn't readily available to the Paleolithic yet advocate other things that weren't available? Most lettuces, cabbages, carrots, etc., are all "new" (ie, products of agriculture). Why say 'no' to honey under the premise that it was too rare when there are 10K yo paintings in Spain showing it being harvested? Lentils in caves, blah-de-blah.

Anyway, I'm all for authentic Paleolithic lifestyle, but like I said, I'm not sure how a good portion of the Paleo community fits into that. It goes back to the original comment, Caveman seems to have been turned into a romanticized gimmick in order to promote site hits and sell books.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

@adl, I agree with many if not all of your sentiments! This is sort of the problem with that label. Try as some might -- moderators like "template", "inspired", "based" -- only serve to confuse and dilute.

Either we evolved to eat just foods available to ancestors a bazillion years ago and we haven't evolved since, or not. There's really no give there, only arguments to be had as to what said foods actually were and which modern foods can come closest to replicating them.

Then if you take in adaptations, pretty much everything goes! But many of the "leaders" are far more receptive to some than others.

@Mike: I think Matt's interpretation is great. But someone finding paleo today will be wondering who this Matt guy is. He has no blog, book, podcast, etc. So actually the closest person I can think of to him who does is Stephan who does not identify as paleo. Then you have all the novelle paleo cuisinacts with the recipes and the oily coffee and the chocolate. C'mon!!!!

I've heard Jimmy Moore drop Robb Wolf's name more than anyone's lately ... likely to get the buzz going for the LC cruise because hype for it has been far lower this year than last (he started hyping 2012 before 2011 cruise sailed!!). Jimmy is still with this paleo stuff but he's not anywhere near paleo.

Diana said...

@anotherdeadletter, Evelyn: In fact, what you are saying is exactly what Eaton/Konner were saying. They weren't against eating rice, dairy, etc., it was the macronutrient levels - and the exercise - that they were talking about. And oh yeah, the periodic famine. And I'm positive that if Boyd/Eaton were presented with evidence that Paleo-person ate starch, they'd revise their findings. And PP did eat starches, carbohydrates.

@Mike, I think you've missed the point. Did you read the part where I said that Paleo in the hands of a true non-dogmatic scientist is fine, but in the hands of a money-hungry huckster, no?

I read on Don Matesz site a study that Greek Orthodox people who adhere to the rigorous fasting requirements of their religion (200 days per year require foregoing meat, dairy, oil, and some of them are total fasts) were the healthiest of all. So maybe it wasn't the Mediterranean diet, but not eating a lot of it? Food for thought.

Diana said...

PS - one area where they did draw the line is refined carbohydrates - and of course, the huge amounts of them that we eat.

Look, the answer to stupid LC and stupid Paleo isn't to act like them and react blindly. (Yes! Fat! 85% of my diet is fat! And you can't do a thing about it! The nutritional establishment said fat was bad, so I say fat is good and more of it is better!)

Everyone admits that SAD is bad, and that one of the baddest things about SAD is the refined carbs. Pretty much everything else we disagree on but not that. But the LC crowd won't admit that the war is over because they are conflict junkies.

Nor do they want to admit that the nutritional establishment has revised their formerly harsh attitudes towards fat, and even sat fat. They are sore winners.

Evelyn aka CarbSane said...

They are sore winners.

Nail. Head. Smackaroo!

anotherdeadletter said...

@diana

re: Greek Fasting, you might find this study interesting

http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&aid=913696

The more I've been reading about autophagy, fasting and the way existing H-G tribes eat, the more I think a major contributor of SAD is the 3 meal/day frequency.

Mike said...

@Diana: If it wasn't for those "hucksters", I wouldn't have discovered Paleo and and would still be obese. Ffor the first time in my adult life, I am now comfortably in the "normal" BMI range. Yes, we should point out BS for what it is, but I am grateful for the work they do.

paleotwopointoh said...

Well, Mike, craziness on the dietary front that leaves you skinny or normal weight is only acceptable if it's low-fat and low-meat/vegan, from what I am gathering. Don Matesz gets a pass because, love actually, while Jimmy gets piled onto as a huckster. Like Don isn't trying to make money too. But I guess vegans can pimp whatever BS and as usual, it will be defended because there is a core of anti-fat and anti-meat to those who 'eat for health' that never really goes away.

I would like to see a brave new world where people could eat delicious meat in larger portions than a sliver and delicious raw dairy in portions larger than an eyedropper without being told they are gluttonous morons who will drop dead at 37 for eating more than 1oz of animal protein at a sitting, and for not eating it under a giant pile of 'wholesome' starch. But it's hard to see how we get there when the rebuttal to paleo is to double down on vegan-friendly food guidelines every.single.time.

anotherdeadletter said...

Nice, kneejerk, inflammatory post! Obviously everyone is one or the other. It's so easy to see everything as absolute; LC or LF or HC or HF. That way we don't actually have to respond to any actual points or debate any of the underlying science.

Kade Storm said...

Wow, Jimmy and Don now? For one thing, putting aside their quest for cash, are they also in the same shape? Wait? What? No? One's like remained around 65-70 kgs while the other's probably increased and dropped somewhere around half that full weight in a cataclysm of yo-yo dieting. Please. Jimmy never got there, or achieved good results on a diet and his lipid numbers are suspect. Although of course that isn't an argument against low-carb since there are plenty on low-carb paleo programmes who are in good shape or have gotten in good shape as a result, but no surprise why some would just pounce on that straw man for dear life.

These vegan conspiracy theories are downright trite and the more their purveyors persist the more one can be convinced that they're just one more tinfoil hat away from a lunatic asylum. The moment someone attempts to defend starch or argue that some plant matter isn't harmful or that for others, majority plant matter works, it becomes a martyr moment for the 'anti-vegans' to start babbling on conspiracy theories and speaking in cliché talking points that couldn't even withstand the scrutiny of a half-distracted child.

Diana said...

@paleotwopointoh: Your second paragraph was a masterpiece of sore winner-ism. Nobody is saying anything like your caricature. Maybe the nutritional establishment was saying a pale version of that, oh 35 years ago, but no one is saying anything like that now.

@Mike, I am sincerely glad you have found a regimen that works for you. And yes, not every used car salesman is a thief. And used cars are sometimes the best bang for the buck. As I've said - several times - Paleo is in its beginnings was and is a fruitful concept, as long as you don't get caught up in LC dogma. Yes, Paleo person was eating carbohydrates, albeit not the SAD kinds implicated in obesity. I have several times put a link to cattail recipes here, so I'll spare you, but you get the point. They ate starchy plants, and even grains.

paleotwopointoh said...

What sore winning? The mainstream view is still low-fat, low-meat. People who are into eating whole foods, especially chicks, are ever quicker to emphasize that they don't eat much, if any meat. Where is this massive shift towards meat and animal protein in general as good in more than tiny amounts?

Paleo/primal appealed to me because it suggested there was a land beyond 90% grains diet. And people like you Diana are trying to shoehorn paleo into that vegan-derived thing by claiming/asserting paleo man didn't mess with that icky overly masculine meat stuff, no sir, it was all grains alla time, science says so. Carnivory was an excessive response to the dominance of low-protein vegan-influenced 'healthy diets', but so is the current new thing of claiming paleo food didn't include animal products in more than token amounts.

I don't eat carnivore and I don't eat mostly grains/starch. I think there are a lot of healthy ways to eat that are not either extreme. That's not a mainstream viewpoint at all, and that is too bad.

lian johnston said...

The mainstream dietary advice recommends daily meat consumption and healthy fats. It also recommends against sugar consumption. The new food plate is completely reasonable advice.

Diana said...

@lian, Absolutely. Mainstream dietary advice has become much more sensible and open to science than it was back in the bad old days of the Food Pyramid.

"And people like you Diana are trying to shoehorn paleo into that vegan-derived thing by claiming/asserting paleo man didn't mess with that icky overly masculine meat stuff, no sir, it was all grains alla time, science says so."

LULZ. Never said such a thing, never would. Paleo man hunted, gathered and foraged for whatever he/she could. Meat consumption varied according to season and availability. I imagine there were times when they gorged on meat, and times when meat was scarce. I do think that their diet wasn't what the Paleohacks say it was. I imagine it had quite a lot of (a) insects (b) dead animals (c) rotten fish (d) fermented fruits and (e) pounded grains, otherwise known as starches. Paleo feast!!

Would people like paleoTWICHOO stop throwing me these hittable fast balls? Can't you guys throw a nasty curve once in a while?

Jane said...

paleotwopointoh
The problem with meat is this. Some Inuit were healthy and some weren't, and we don't know what the healthy ones were doing. Meat is very high in iron and very low in manganese. How did the healthy Inuit get their manganese? And was the atherosclerosis/arthritis/osteoporosis found in ancient Inuit mummies due to manganese deficiency? Until we know the answer to this, we won't know whether modern day meat eaters aren't harming themselves. What we do know is that iron overload has been found in practically every disease you can think of, including the ones in Inuit mummies. And that iron overload = manganese deficiency, because iron and manganese share an absorption system which gets downregulated by a high-iron diet.

Galina L. said...

Jane,
Humans started to eat substantial amounts of grains just recently (10000 years ago in Egypt and Mesopotamia and less in Northern Europe). What sources of manganese did people use before the grain became a staple in a diet?

anotherdeadletter said...

I would imagine the ancestors to our modern greens had as much if not more manganese than our present varieties of broccoli, kale and the like. They don't have the huge quantities of the substance as, but surely enough to stave off deficiency.

anotherdeadletter said...

*as grains

Diana said...

@Galina, is 10K years ago recent? I think it's quite enough time to adapt. That's 400 generations. 100 generations = 2500 years. 10K - 2500 = 7500. I don't think it takes even 100 generations for a favorable adaptation to sweep thru a small population, although I admit: this is not my strong point. My understanding is that a strong selective sweep can happen within a few generations, and that geneticists now have models to describe and predict this.

Kade Storm said...

"My understanding is that a strong selective sweep can happen within a few generations, and that geneticists now have models to describe and predict this." - Diana

Mat Lalaonde's discussed this very factor, and he's a worthwhile person to listen to because he is committed to his scientific background rather than some 'renegade' who bashes his education. He doesn't endorse grains--because he finds them to be a poor choice and not sustainable--but he's made it quite clear that depending on intensity of selection pressure, adaptation can take place in an even shorter amount of time and that we are adapted to quite a few grains. How much? That's another story. Will we 'thrive' on them? That too is another story and will vary from individual to individual. This is a very reasonable attitude and well in line with what we presently understand about evolution and natural selection.

Also this kind of thinking brings up all the questions about ancestry and who's what, exactly. Now until and unless we're talking about someone from a very isolated tribe with very restricted breeding options, it is very reasonable to assume that most of us--despite phenotypically dominant features--carry a variety of genes. I know I've got bits of a lot of different places, literally, so what are the things that I am suited and ill-suited to? Perhaps I am a bit--only a bit--resistant to this 'but some of our ancestors aren't adapted to this food' argument because I find that it so poorly applies to individuals such as myself when I could be carrying bits of those grain intolerant ancestors along with those grain munching ancestors.

Galina L. said...

I want to refer to Weston Price again. According to his observations, he found healthy societies eating grains, but they all took great care in preparing their crops properly. Probably, most of 10 000 years people who ate grains had being adapting to eating sprouted, soaked, fermented and treated in all possible ways grains and beans, not the modern fast preparations and yeast breads baked from highly pulverized flour.

Jane said...

Hi Galina
Well you know our Paleolithic ancestors seem to have eaten a lot of legumes, according to a 2005 paper entitled 'Mousterian vegetal food in Kebara cave, Mt Carmel'. It's very rare for plant foods to be preserved at such sites, you normally only get bones so people think we only ate meat. At this site there were vast amounts of legume seeds.

As for preparation of grains, the Hunza did not ferment their bread, and their astonishing health says quite clearly that they didn't need to. They did sprout their legumes, apparently.

Kade, I have to admit I don't understand why people like Mat Lalonde don't endorse grains. Do they have any evidence that people who have eaten whole grains and no refined grains all their lives find them remotely harmful? I don't know of any such evidence. I am also unable to think of any 'adaptation' humans could possibly need that they did not already have prior to eating grains, if indeed they haven't actually eaten grains all along.

Kade Storm said...

Yeah, that's kind of an obvious give away. Most of the present-day traditional cultures and cultures that do consume very high-carb and relatively low-fat diets tend to put great effort into preparation techniques. Mat Lalonde also stressed this point.

However, here's the problem. If it can be argued that these foods can--at the very least--work, if prepared properly, then they aren't inherently the 'bad guys' as made out by certain others nutritional talking heads. Just prepare them correctly. Although even then, I think for some, they might not work out as staple.

Kade Storm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kade Storm said...

Jane,

Mat Lalonde's criticism is actually two-fold.

The first one is his primary criticism from having spent some ten years as a vegetarian with the last two being 'vegan'. He is of the persuasion that mass grain agriculture is unsustainable in the long term. The is his primary argument against grains.

His secondary argument is that grains are not necessarily as nutrient dense as they are made out to be on paper. Many of their properties, due to preparation--fermentation, cooking, etc.--do get destroyed. I have personally found this to be true, meaning that one has to actually go a little further (consume more food) in order to acquire adequate levels of certain nutrients if their diet is primarily driven by such plant matter, i.e., low-fat vegetarianism or veganism.

Besides, here's a question: Say we have a population who are doing well on whole food plant-based diet. How do we know that they wouldn't do even better if their diet was shifted towards meat, tubers, vegetables and fruit?

All in all, I think Lalonde's stance is fairly reasonable. He says that they can work and that they're not bad; simply unsustainable and not the most nutrient rich. This is an exceptionally reasonable stance when considered against the backdrop of the paleosphere where legumes and grains are generally suspect.

Delete

Beth@WeightMaven said...

Unless his views have changed much (I'm still waiting for his AHS12 video to go up!), I believe Matt also avoids grains due to the role specific grain-based proteins (like gliadin) appear to play in intestinal permeability and autoimmune problems.

paleotwopointoh said...

Oh, you are just being disingenuous. I am not the carnivore zero carber or twichoo advocate you are clearly looking for. You sit there making claims about how high grain consumption is both what paleo man did and the path to 'healthiest' and then back off when that is pointed out. w/e. i'll go eat my pot roast and potatoes.

paleotwopointoh said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burusho_people

Wikipedia says the claims about the Hunza are quite exaggerated, that they too were as you say the inuit are. Also the Inuit ate a lot of tiny plants when they could find them. And there are different groups of 'inuit', so it's hard to make general claims.

It is pretty unlikely any culture that consumes meat frequently with other foods is in poor health as a result of the meat. There's nothing in any reputable research to suggest that this is the case.

Alex said...

Haven't you read "The China Study"? Meatz iz teh ebil poizonz!

Galina L. said...

It is just a common-sense grade guess, but I think people without permanent living and storage facilities and without practicing an agriculture had legumes in couple months a year, like nuts,acorns, berries and fruits.

Jane said...

Hi Kade
Mass grain agriculture is not sustainable in the long term? Does he mean, the way it's done at present? Certainly, if you use NPK fertilisers instead of rock dust it isn't sustainable. And you have to know what you're doing with the rock dust. But that's the agriculture of the future, it seems to me.

And grains are not nutrient-dense? I suspect he got that argument from Loren Cordain, who gives a table in one of his papers showing micronutrient levels in grains and they're mostly average or low. But that table does not include manganese or copper. They're the reason I eat grains.

Jane said...

Beth, yes I expect you're right, Mat avoids grains partly because of the gluten/gliadin. But it could be that these proteins are only a problem because the enzymes that normally break them down require micronutrients that get removed from refined grains. I suspect that's the case. We know that certain gut peptidases are activated by manganese, for instance. The USDA tables say as much as 80% of the manganese gets removed from white flour.

Kade Storm said...

Hi Jane,

To the first point: yes. I think he finds it--in its current form--inefficient and unsustainable.

To the second. In his podcast with Chris Kresser, Mat Lalonde was actually somewhat dismissive of Cordain's work and was critical of some of the information, including the views on beans and adaptation, I believe. This has been demonstrated further by his recent ventures in Paleo-land, where he's been challenging the status quo. Now on the topic of density, I believe that is his independent conclusion, although you've got copper and manganese, which are central to your own argument on good health. However, what about others who require other nutrients? I do know folk who don't maintain good zinc status as a result of high phytic acid load and copper in their diets. It would be great to get your thoughts on the matter.

Also, to the important part Beth brought up regarding gluten. I should've mentioned this, but most grain proponents who I've come across actually don't endorse wheat in their list and typically recommend rice and millet instead. I myself can attest to the fact that no amounts of whole grain, manganese-infused wheat, does me any favours when consumed as staple. While it won't outright kill me, I just don't find it to be a very pleasant source of calories which brings issues that range from intestinal burdens to even skin deterioration. Now I am not clinically coeliac, but I do have a higher than average anti-body reaction to wheat and have done damage to myself in the past by using it as a primary source of fuel. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, brown rice, millet, lentils and beans on the other hand, have been relatively okay.

Galina L. said...

Kade,
my son who has much less problems without wheat with his eczema, are doing well eating buckwheat and potatoes. Pancakes made from fermented buckwheat grouts are his treat when he comes home for vocations.

Diana said...

Is Matt LaLonde a population geneticist? If not, I don't care what he thinks. I am NOT a pop'n geneticist, but I've been exposed to the science in a former life, and I know that it's something you should leave to an expert.

Diana said...

PS I hope that didn't sound rude. Not meant to be. It's just that I've maxed out on gurus, and I now suffer from "guru-itis." (Not to be confused with "kuru", another brain disorder.)

I have no health problems and I'm tired of "don't eat this don't eat that" and obsessing about manganese, copper, and other trace minerals, when I've experienced no ill effects of eating a roll. The only ill effects I've experienced eating grains is when I ate entire loaves of bread, with butter, and gained weight. And I have.

Galina L. said...

Congrats with having a good health! It explains a lot. Evelin also feels no difference in ketosis or not. I think that people who recite annoyingly long list of vanished health issues on a paleo diet on various paleo sites are the ones who unfortunately are able to suffer different ill effects after eating a roll, and a weight gain is the least of their worries. May be they are less adapted to eat modern diet, or accumulated more damage.
You see no benefits in eating LC diet because it does not correct any body dysfunction which you don't have. It is like me eating according to recommendations for people who suffer from IBS which I don't have. I will see no difference in how my digestive system feel.It doesn't mean IBS suffering people are wrong about not eating onion or apples or what not.

anotherdeadletter said...

That's the thing. It's not a modern diet at all. Grains and legumes have been consumed for thousands of years. They're not HFCS or hydrogenated oil which are only 1 and 2 generations old. If mankind at large couldn't abide grains across the population, they wouldn't have been cultivated by nearly every culture.

There are certainly people who can't eat wheat, just as there are people who can't have milk, shellfish, tomatoes, etc. It's one thing to adjust a diet to exclude those things, it's another to claim mankind was never evolved to eat them and they're the cause of everything from obesity to cancer.

Jane said...

Hi Kade
Very interesting what you say about zinc. You know zinc in the blood goes down during inflammatory states, and copper goes up, for good physiological reasons, but lots of people think they have zinc deficiency and copper overload because of this.

Many years ago I read a book about zinc and concluded zinc deficiency was very common. Gradually over the years as I read more I realised this simply wasn't true. It's copper deficiency (and possibly zinc overload) that's the problem. I'm not sure how much of Klevay's work on copper is available to you, but I would recommend you read as much of it as you can.

About gluten. Have you heard of something called oral tolerance? The gut immune system has a complicated process for preventing a response to food proteins. It looks like yours isn't working properly. There are apparently lots of people in Japan who can't tolerate rice. Anyone who was brought up on refined carbs is at risk for failure of oral tolerance, because the immune system needs all those minerals, and so do the gut bacteria which help in all this.

Kade Storm said...

Hi Jane,

I'll take your comments about zinc on board, but I should add that the people I know--who have received zinc supplementation--often do see relieved symptoms and good health. In fact, the doctor actually endorsed the grain diet but just recommended a little extra zinc on top. Nevertheless, I will look into Klevay's work on copper.

I have heard of oral tolerance, but not nearly enough to make a confident comment. I get the impression that you think my system doesn't know how to downregulate an immune response to certain proteins? You could be on to something. What I do know is that my 'system' as it were, doesn't work properly with a lot of wheat. However, before we jump to conclusions, I should clarify that I don't have major health issues and don't consider myself a victim of refined carbohydrates by any stretch since what breads and rice I got were usually whole grain, however, the results are the results. I am just better off keeping wheat to a minimum and tend to do better on a diet with a higher ratio of meat protein with vegetables and tubers.

I have been reading on another topic, which kind of relates to this very topic. The importance of breast feeding when it comes to initial gut integrity and health. I get the impression that if an infant is adequately breast fed, and the mother's receiving adequate nutrition, then the infant in question will develop better gut integrity. It's just a theory at this point.


Hi Galina,

Thanks or sharing the anecdote about your son. I am interested in your son's experience since you describe him as a generally healthy, lean young lad who suffers from very mild issues with wheat, such as eczema, etc., which are kind of trivial next to glucose intolerance and overweight. I can say the same with regards to my experience and I think I'd compare well with him in certain regards. In my case, while I don't have eczema, I do get scalp dryness and flaking as well as forehead bumps, which reduce greatly when I eat generous servings of meat and eggs with vegetables and tubers as a side dish.

I also remember reading one of your other comments where you mentioned that your son's experimented with ketosis before examinations and academic challenges. Has this strategy actually work out nicely for him?

Cheers.

Galina L. said...

My son, probably, had a very small chance to be allergies-free with both father and mother having multiple allergies.I think that metabolic problems make existing allergies worse and more noticeable. My husband is a naturally-thin athletic person, has no problem with eating wheat, but has to be careful with the amount of high-fiber veggies because fiber causes IBS symptoms for him. Our son's early childhood was horrible in the regard of allergies despite me breastfeeding him. If I knew then what I know now, I would try to exclude also wheat and milk besides regular allergies-offending foods like citruses,strawberry, spices, smoked meats and so forth. When my son became a toddler, it was very difficult to introduce any new food - too many things caused allergies. Green apples were fine, but red ones out of limits, he could have goat milk, but not cow's, carrots were very problematic. It was a nightmare. I guess,all that forced me to be careful with his diet on the first place. Also, mine and my husband's allergies basically forced us to live a healthy life-style, be engaged in exercises, avoid drinking.
My son is not a LCarber by all means. He intentionally gets in the ketosis only when he feels like he may be getting a flue (then he trys to sleep more ,to get more fluids and to fast/eat only small amounts of fatty foods). During testing time he mostly lives on eggs, cheese and meat because it saves time, effort and even money. I always give him from home at least half of gallon of my own sauerkraut and good sources of fat (grassfed butter, suet, coconut oil) to be sure he will use that staff. He doesn't like to cook, stringy, but also is very picky about his food. My son says to me that we would rather cook and eat once a day some good stake with good sides than to spent the same amount of money on a cafeteria food. Sometimes when he doesn't buy meat he eats for several days just potatoes cooked in microwave with salt, butter and a fermented cabbage.
He turned 20 at November, during autumn semester he gained some muscles weight . His small size(belt 29 inches)pants stays the same, but many of small size tops got too tight. He became regular in a rock-climbing gym, and right now went with his friends to climb in Tennessee.

Unknown said...
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Jane said...

Hi Kade
There are certainly studies showing benefit of zinc supplements. Some scientists say zinc works by displacing iron from membranes, which means if you have iron overload it might make you feel better, at least in the short term.

'I don't consider myself a victim of refined carbohydrates by any stretch since what breads and rice I got were usually whole grain..'

Hmmm. I'm not sure you're right about this. We just don't know. What we do know is that ZERO refined carbs CAN produce excellent health. We don't know whether even zero can do it in our polluted environment. This is why I'm doing my n=1 experiment.

Kade Storm said...

Thanks for the info., Galina.

Sorry to hear about the ordeal that your son had to go through with allergies while growing up--and by extension--you and your husband. However, it's good to read that he's doing well in his new-found young adulthood and that those early struggles are a saga of the past.

So he relies on ketosis to deal with flu and for time-saving purposes before exams. Maybe you can pick his brain about whether or not he notices changes in cognitive performance, as this is an area that intrigues me a lot.

All the best.

ProudDaddy said...

@Evelyn - Today's Robb Wolf's "Episode 3" seems quite balanced and reasonable to me. How do I err?

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