las

Welcome all seeking refuge from low carb dogma!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

If your guru's ideas have an expiration date, maybe it's time to find one whose ideas have a longer shelf life.

Have you just stumbled upon an old book, blog post, interview, etc. from your favorite guru only to have someone exclaim how old that is and how your guru's opinions have changed?  It might be time for a new guru.

Quick background here.  First, no I haven't dropped the Paleo ApprovED issue, but there are some things related and lots of stuff unrelated going on that have eaten up time and energy to blog on the subject.  It is a sensitive issue and needs more "care" than your run of the mill blogging.  It is also rather stressful and defeats one of the purposes of this blog as an outlet for my sarcastic side -- for which a post such as this is perfectamundo!    So that said, as I was looking for a post on Robb Wolf's blog (this one) my search also popped up the following post:


Interesting ... What was this about?  Turns out it was hit piece on James Krieger written in February of 2010.  I found the post and the comments rather interesting, especially those by James and Alan Aragon.  Although Robb softens a bit in the comments section, the fact remains that this was nothing but a completely unreferenced, unsubstantiated ad hominem attack on James by Robb Wolf.  Considering how he pretty much would prefer to tell me to go eff myself rather than merely be forthcoming on details of the diet he so vociferously touts, it was a rather amusing random find.

I shared this on my personal Facebook page as well as the public  The Carb-Sane Asylum Facebook page.    One of my Facebook friends shared it on his wall.  

Yes, I'm less diplomatic on social media ;-)

I'm not sure if everyone can see the shared link and commentary so I've just screenshot the part that got me thinking about this post.  


Jan had also linked to Hyperlipid posts on Hunger where another "statesman" lowcarb/paleo blogger attacks Stephan Guyenet in the process of stating that insulin as a satiety hormone is bullocks.   Leaving that aside, there seems to be this notion that anything older than three years old in this realm is somehow inappropriate to even mention, let alone discuss.  Such was much of the criticism of Sally Fallon Morell's review of Robb Wolf's book.  It's three years old ... Why now???    Why NOT now is my point.    C'mon.  Robb is known as the NY Times best selling author of The Paleo Solution.  And double c'mon already -- 2010 is not exactly the dark ages.  How supremely ironic that this argument put forth so often by folks that are enamored with pre-WWII obesity research courtesy of Gary Taubes, or insist we need to go much, much, MUCH, further back in time, all the way to the paleolithic, for cues to good health courtesy of Robb Wolf and company.

In the post, Robb wrote:  
Well, anyway, James’ original post had a list a greivances with Gary Taubes stuff, one of which was a statement that really left me scratching my head, that insulin was anorexic. James Kreiger said insulin reduces the sense of appetite! Now, this seemed both counter intuitive and completely against the research looking at insulin, leptin and hunger. High insulin seems to dysregulate appetite control mechanisms and it is what allows peopel to literally eat themselves to death.
Red:  What research?  Did Robb cite one study?  One text?  Even a blog post?  Lecture?  Editorial in Men's Health?  Nope.  Not even a letter to Penthouse. 

Blue:  Apparently high insulin *seems* or *appears to* do a lot of magical things according to to these gurus.  Have any of them actually shown you that it actually does what they claim is *possible*?    

Now James' TheBSDetective blog is offline having been replaced with newer blogs such as his Weightology.net site.  But Robb couldn't even bother linking to the exact post he took issue with (had he, there'd be a chance of tracking it down on an archive site).  At the time, readers were not  led directly to James' own words so they could see for themselves what the fuss was all about.   That's a serious breach of etiquette, even for ad hominem attacks.   If I know James, and I think I do pretty well by now, he had a number of references to back up whatever assertions he made.  Thus, although he, like yours truly, is often accused of ad hominem attacks, his style has been anything but.  James brings the goods.  Some may not like his choice of words, but his criticisms of Taubes are over the quality of Taubes' research and the lack of scientific evidence supporting Taubes' various assertions.  It's funny how folks like James and myself are never allowed sarcasm while those like Robb routinely behave like complete jerks, and resort to mockery and profanity at every opportunity.  This, apparently is worthy of praise?   Ahh well.  Double standards are nothing new.  

Now Robb is a "former research biochemist".  This may be inflating his credentials a bit, but he does have a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry from an accredited institution of higher learning.  If he's opining regularly on these issues, why is he relying on folks like Gary Taubes for information?  Does he not have a library (or access to one) stocked with some of the basics and classics such as Lehninger's Principles of Biochemistry -- perhaps as a text used in his studies at UC Chico?    I know Mat Lalonde has a PhD and Robb only a BS, but Mat's thesis out of Chem and Biological Chem department at Harvard was titled:  Chiral thioureas in asymmetric catalysis : from simple to bifunctional.  Surely gives him the background to research this stuff, but why was Robb outsourcing something that should have been more in his wheelhouse?   

Here is p. 934 of the 5th Edition of Lehninger's Principles of Biochemistry (2008) but the content is the same as in the 4th Edition (2004).  If anyone has an earlier edition that wishes to check for me, I thank you in advance, but 2004 is more than "old" enough for this issue.  


It's not like this information is hidden in an isolated sentence that doesn't make the index of the, admittedly lengthy, book.  No, it is in Part II Bioenergetics and MetabolismChapter 23 Hormonal Regulation and Integration of Mammalian Metabolism with a paragraph heading of Insulin Acts in the Arcuate Nucleus to Regulate Eating and Energy Conservation.

Still, Robb does publish Mat's email.  I don't want to C&P the entire post so here's the main gist of Mat's contribution:
Acute exposure of the brain to insulin blunts hunger because it clears dopamine from the brain, which signals the end of a meal. The brain becomes insulin resistant upon chronic exposure to insulin. The chronically high levels of insulin that result interfere with the satiety hormone leptin, which makes the body think it is starving and causes the animal to eat more.
Mat doesn't offer any citations, or Robb didn't publish them.  Not the best showing for Mat, but ultimately it's Robb's post so he should have fleshed this out for his readers.  Being a geek and all ...  A quick Google Scholar search on brain insulin resistance nets this 2000 paper:  Role of Brain Insulin Receptor in Control of Body Weight and Reproduction (link to download of PDF here).  The point being, that if Robb has the cred to sit at the debate table, why is he not bringing that to said table?


Back to James Krieger and Insulin


It is impossible to think of that name and that hormone without being reminded of James' monumental and excellent series on Insulin ... oh ... about three years ago!!!


At the time, Jimmy Moore did his first of what I've come to call "data dump" posts on a topic.  Jimmy sent out emails to all of his so-called experts and published up their responses.  If there's a better demonstration of why a biased, mired in dogma, dishonest, scientifically ignorant person like Jimmy Moore should not be a gatekeeper in a community like this, I don't know of one.  From his one-sided selection of "experts", to the "set up", to the sheer volume of opinion/information so as to overwhelm, Jimmy demonstrated how not to do it.


Here was the "set up":

I’m working on a response post to something that’s been getting a lot of attention in the blogosphere from the Weightology blog. It’s a column called “Insulin…an Undeserved Bad Reputation.” Here are the basic tenets of his argument:

- High-carb diets don’t lead to chronically high insulin levels

- The body can store fat even when it has low insulin levels
- Insulin suppresses, doesn’t stimulate appetite
- Protein stimulates insulin just as much as carbohydrate

It seems his thinking about low-carb diets is somewhat flawed because he’s assuming it’s a high-protein diet and even admits at the end of his piece that a low protein, low-carb, high-fat diet would keep insulin levels as low as possible. But he claims “I don’t see anybody recommending that.” Ummmm, Dr. Atkins did and others.

Your response is appreciated.
Gotta love how Jimmy picked out the one thing that might be in error -- that nobody is recommending LCLPHF -- this was, after all, long before Kimkins-style 1000 calorie fat fasts and NuttyK.   I blogged quite a bit on the various responses in Jimmy Moore's data dump.  Here's Jimmy's intro in the blog:
Insulin is a dirty word for most people who are livin’ la vida low-carb because so many of us believe it is the major hormone responsible for making us fat, sick, and old. I’ve literally interviewed and spoken with hundreds of people who have pointed the finger of blame at excessive insulin production being one of the leading causes of obesity, disease, and aging. The theory goes a little something like this: excessive carbohydrate consumption leads to higher insulin levels which in turn begins a devastating domino effect on weight, health, and longevity. Therefore, if you cut the carbohydrates down in your diet, then it will result in lower insulin levels which leads to fat loss, health improvements, and a longer life. All of this seems to make sense and books galore have been dedicated to addressing this very topic in recent years. But what if the theory is dead wrong? That’s exactly what a nutrition-minded blogger named James Krieger from Weightology believes and he has been writing quite extensively about it over the past couple of months. It’s a subject matter I believe is worthy of further discussion here today.
He goes on to discuss James' education and experience, gives the gratuitous "I respect him" ... before unloading thousands of words of mostly unsubstantiated opinion.  What James (and me, and others of like mind) "believe" is not a matter of opinion.  It is a matter of what the scientific evidence supports or refutes. That books galore have been dedicated to convincing people that an unsupportable hypothesis is fact is an indictment of the community and its scientific shortcomings, not something to brag about.  

Here are links to my Insulin Wars series inspired by this.
Sometimes there are interesting coincidences that pop up.  Here's one such time.   I didn't have the time nor desire to blog on all of the responses, but lo and behold tucked in there we have:
Mat Lalonde, Harvard PhD research biochemist (courtesy of Robb Wolf)  Old school insulin research experiments involved injecting insulin into the brains of animals. They would inject one large dose of insulin and noticed that it made the animals stop eating. However, this is an acute response. ... {the rest is verbatim as quoted above}
I can't know for sure, but looks like Robb got Jimmy's email and shot him a link to his post and Mat's words.  Jimmy happily linked to the post bashing James Krieger.  Here's what the others had to say about insulin and appetite, in order of appearance:
Dr. William Yancy:  That insulin does not stimulate appetite is repeated often and is based on highly controlled experiments over short periods, many of them in animals. I am not sure these are applicable....
Goes on to discuss weight gain with insulin treatment in some studies.  This does not refute the argument James put forth. 
Zoe Harcombe:  Myth 3 – “dozens and dozens of experiments” – the link goes to one study! Can’t even be bothered to look at it. Insulin may well suppress appetite but the issue is what happens when insulin has cleared all the glucose in the blood stream...
I guess the big shot obesity researcher (cough) couldn't be bothered to look at the single link.  Maybe she should have at least glanced and noted that it was to a review paper:  The effects of insulin on the central nervous system--focus on appetite regulation.  (direct download link for full text PDF)  that summarizes multiple studies.  At least had she bothered to read the abstract, one might think the intrepid obesity expert might have read this line and thought it worth her while to read further before sticking her foot in her mouth:  "Among its many well-known functions, insulin is also a potent anorexigenic hormone, and insulin receptors are widely distributed throughout the central nervous system. "
Valerie Berkowitz: Insulin may make people feel less hungry if they eat and inject insulin to help balance blood sugar. If blood sugar is not balanced and someone is hungry they eat carbs and inject insulin so the nutrients gets into cells, this may reduce hunger and cause weight gain but it is expected as part of diabetes management. If insulin levels are high and food has been shuttled to its destination, you will be hungry because your blood sugar will be low and hunger is a symptom of low blood sugar.  
Many a paleo "expert" on blood sugar say much the same thing -- low blood sugar makes you hungry.  But the goal is ultimately low blood sugar for these people -- the lower that A1c the better!!  But eating carbs spikes blood sugar.   Hmmmm (and no, reactive hyperglycemia -- true RH -- is quite rare).
Adele Hite: Insulin suppresses appetite–in the short term. It is true that for many years we have thought of insulin as an appetite suppressant. It does seem to be a fairly weak, short-term appetite suppressant. Emerging science, however, has demonstrated that in fact insulin contributes to a long-term “feed forward” mechanism (or addictive cycle) in humans.
She cites this article on deconstructed milkshakes as evidence.  Sigh.
Fat Head Naughton: Insulin sweeps fat and sugar out of the blood. How that would suppress appetite is a mystery to me. If insulin suppresses appetite, somebody will have to explain to me why people can eat an entire box of cookies or an entire bag of potato chips, taking in more and more food even as insulin is skyrocketing.
Science folks.  Science.  Everyone knows tha after we eat a box of cookies blood sugar tanks because insulin has swept nutrients from your blood.  Science.  At least Todd Becker looked at the studies and discussed peripherally vs. centrally (brain) delivered insulin.  But he essentially fell in the Lustig-chasing-a-person-with-an-insulin-syringe camp, which is not any more physiologically relevant to normal eating humans.  Stephen Phinney mentioned appetite and higher protein reducing it (this would counter Kreiger exactly how?)  Adam Kosloff was his usual uber-fake syrupy, slimy self, and he's still around making up inane cartoons, listings of pictures but too busy to apologize for being a frank asshole on multiple occasions .. but I digress ...


Gary Taubes is so 2009?


While I agree this is true, let's not forget that late in 2010 (for all intents and purposes, 2011) Gary Taubes published the dumbed down version of Good Calories, Bad Calories entitled Why We Get Fat.  Not only dumbed down, but pared down, and missing his lynch pin rationale thanks in large part to an annoying then-anonymous blogger with a whimsical bunny-eared cartoon avatar.  I'm not really sure who Gary disdains more, me or James.  I'm in good company in any case.  

THREE TIMES in this book Gary Taubes goes through his version of what happens with insulin when you eat.   The second version is numbered and goes like this {Kindle locations 1784-1794}: 
Here’s the chain of events:
  1. You think about eating a meal containing carbohydrates.
  2. You begin secreting insulin.
  3. The insulin signals the fat cells to shut down the release of fatty acids (by inhibiting HSL) and take up more fatty acids (via LPL) from the circulation.
  4. You start to get hungry, or hungrier.
  5. You begin eating.
  6. You secrete more insulin.
  7. The carbohydrates are digested and enter the circulation as glucose, causing blood sugar levels to rise.
  8. You secrete still more insulin.
  9. Fat from the diet is stored as triglycerides in the fat cells, as are some of the carbohydrates that are converted into fat in the liver.
  10. The fat cells get fatter, and so do you.
  11. The fat stays in the fat cells until the insulin level drops.
Tell me, is this book outdated too?  It is odd that most don't refer to WWGF -- it was a relative dud -- but will still refer back to the low carb bible published  waaaay back in 2007.  The impression one gets from this scenario is that insulin makes you hungry.  But here's an interesting thing.

Gary Taubes says insulin acts on 
the brain to suppress appetite.

Just by thinking about eating them [carbs], we secrete insulin. The insulin makes us hungry by temporarily diverting nutrients out of the circulation and into storage, and this, in turn, makes us savor our first bites even more than we otherwise would. The greater the blood sugar and insulin response to a particular food, the more we like it— the better we think it tastes.  {KL 2070-2072}
Oh wait, that's not it ... Here it is ...
The insulin is now working in the brain to suppress appetite and eating behavior.  {KL 2067}
Gee ... I wonder where this half-baked idea that insulin sweeps our blood clear of nutrients making us hungrier just thinking of food came from?!  (For the record, the other mention of this comes circa KL 1670.)

Looking at "old" stuff is helpful ... because ...


Whose "Ideas" Hold Up?


I put ideas in quotes, because we're really talking about information, not original ideas per se.  Still ... James Krieger's insulin series is around three years old.  Many posts on this blog are around three years old (it's hard to believe that in a few months I'll be going into my fifth year of blogging!!).  Robb Wolf's book is around three years old.  Gary Taubes' WWGF  book is around three years old.   Robert Lustig's viral (in more ways than one) Fructose video is even older!  Four years old and counting!!

James' series remains a classic that is linked to in current discussions to this day.  This is evidenced by the comments dated 2013 on those posts.   Nobody links to it with a disclaimer that "most" or even "some of it is outdated".   People don't link to it and get accosted by Kriegerites insisting that James has changed his opinions and you would know that if you listened to some podcasts and such.  James doesn't lash out at readers for lacking reading comprehension because he's embarrassed by what he wrote three years ago.  There's no need for James to defend it ad infinitum because it was then, and remains, a series of articles based on the current state of the scientific evidence available at that time.  It holds up because most of this stuff about insulin has been thoroughly investigated in the literature ... some even dating to the Sixties!   You just have to NOT cherry pick to see that.   If there were new information in the interim, I'd expect James to address that.  As he has on other issues:  A Note on Scientific Integrity.   Please read that. 

Meanwhile, Robb Wolf's website still contains the version of paleo from his book that everyone says is outdated and that he has changed opinions on.    Nobody eats lean meats in paleo, baby.  It's buttered bacon or bust these days!!  But that word ... opinion ... has little place in scientific discussions, unless we're talking areas of genuine controversy with ever-changing and new information (e.g. leptin research, even today but especially in the early years).  Gary Taubes has doubled down with NuSI and continues to write editorials in any medical journal that will publish his works.  

Is Taubes really so 2009?  Not if you ask the new crop of torch bearers.  Prof. Tim Noakes, Christine Cronau, Vince DelMonte, Sam Feltham, Jonathan Bailor and so many more.  Hucksters one and all in my opinion.  Not to mention the newer paleo contingency led by the chronically fatigued "blood sugar expert"  Diane Sanfilippo ... so many more.  Just ask her and she'll tell you how hers is the book most likely to be found when someone searches on paleo on Amazon.  

I wrote this post so that the next time someone says that fill-in-the-blank has changed his/her stance, I can just link to this.  It's no wonder Robb got so upset when I didn't even mention his name in this post:  New Information.  


See?  His recommendations haven't changed much according to his statement around a year ago.  So lean meats, mostly MUFA for your fats, and avoid gut irritants:
Let me be crystal clear about this: Anything that damages the gut lining (including bacterial, viral, and parasitic infections, as well as alcohol, grains, legumes, and dairy) can predispose one to autoimmunity, multiple chemical sensitivities, and allergies to otherwise benign foods.  {p. 92 The Paleo Solution, Kindle ed.,  bold emphasis from book, red highlight mine}
Nevermind on the ten grams of fish oil though.  He changed his mind on that and was duped fatty protein not contributing to body fat.  But have a NorCal margarita on him!!  Twitter search @robbwolf norcal , Twitter search @robbwolf tequila .  He's a geek that way.



Or ...

If your guru's ideas have an expiration date, maybe it's time to find one whose ideas have a longer shelf life.
I don't much like the term guru, I tend to agree with Antonio and Scott over at Evil Sugar Radio that the term is best used as a pejorative.  But you get the point.  If a proponent of a lifestyle is changing their views based on the direction of the prevailing winds, this is not a good sign.   If their views are evidence-based, they may change, but not in such an inconsistent herky jerk fashion.  And the worst are those mired in long-debunked hypotheses.    

It's funny, HuffPo did a flashback on 80's fitness icons in July of 2012.  Yeah Richard Simmons!!  Still doing the same thing.  Still keeping the weight off, perhaps whackier than ever, a little sag here, some gray or hair dye there, some typical aging.  He's no science-based ground-breaker, but a better inspiration I don't think you'll find.  He really has helped a ton of people, and likely harmed no one with baseless advice like that which leaves so many unable to eat even a fraction of the foods they were formerly able to without digestive distress.

I'll take Simmons, with his Deal-a-Meal diet plan (twas pretty flexible!), shorty shorts and Sweating to the Oldies any day of the week versus these adrenally fatigued caveman wannabes, jacked up on caffeine, blathering on about this study and that study they've never even bothered to read, that can't even tell you what their recommended diet is and routinely don't abide their own advice.  

Then there are those ultimately just concerned about the buy-in no matter what they're selling and will use science to sound smart a la Mark Sisson.  It's amazing he has been able to pull this off!  He's all into fasting and fat burning these days, but not that long ago he was pushing dextrose recovery drinks.


This is also why, whether they are correct or not, I still have respect for S.Boyd Eaton, and even some for Art De Vany.  The former just living the lifestyle and standing true to principles he laid out almost 30 years ago.  Principles that seem to have done well by him in his own life.  The latter certainly capitalizing, getting the science wrong quite a bit, hawking glutathione supplements he has a financial stake in ... but at least sticking to the same diet and exercise recs that he lives and abides by for all these years.  I am concerned that De Vany has undergone a hip and a knee replacement and is looking a bit older of late (not bad, just, like Eaton and so many others, profoundly average for his age after all and suffering some of the associated degenerative problems like the rest of the population), and has taken to using stock photos rather than his own image to sell folks on the longevity schtick of his diet.  But this pales in comparison to the antics of the more prominent gurus.

image link
Sorry to end weakly here ... In a perfect world this would end with a bang.  But I've got other stuff on the proverbial plate for today.   So off with me, and congrats for making it through the whole post!  :-)   



Happy snow day!!




48 comments:

Laura Loudermilk Semmens said...

Heehee, I saw Richard Simmons in the Macys Thanksgiving Parade and he really does look the same. Short shorts and a tank top, wind and temps in the 20s, riding a large tricylcle.

Screennamerequired said...

It's not that their ideas had an expiration date in that new research came to light. More like it was made up or distorted/over simplified trash to sell books, until people done a bit of thinking and research on their own and discovered that maybe what the were told wasn't exactly true. e.g "Large fluffy non atherogenic LDL particles".
A lot of it's just echo chamber regurgitation as well. You read the same dubious stuff on a lot of different blogs. It's like one or 2 people decided its true then it becomes gospel that is linked all across the blogosphere.

carbsane said...

One would think that the echo chamber had broken apart somewhat but it just seems to move on. But this is Taubes' enduring legacy. I imagine it must be embarrasing to have bought into his stuff -- I have several friends who did and even blogged quite a bit on it and such. But there are ways to move past such with grace and save face. It helps when one isn't a prominent promoter of THE diet to cure all, however.


In many ways it's intellectual laziness as well. If you're not an intellectual, like Christine Cronau, so be it. But it doesn't fly when you claim to be.

carbsane said...

Also ... I remember back in 09 when I first found the LC community I kept hearing that fat couldn't go into fat cells without insulin. This didn't jibe with what I recalled from my bio days -- glucose and AA's need transporters but fatty acids don't require them (though they are sometimes involved too). I did various searches and I kept getting hits -- and all trails led back to someone citing Taubes. It's what I call circular referencing.


It is interesting how many cite that 1965 Physio text from GCBC when I'm quite sure those making the citation have never seen the materials they cite firsthand.

Lighthouse Keeper said...

For a master class in uncritical thinking listen to 'The Wellness Guys' podcast no. 124 featuring Jessie Reimers, a young woman who is taking on the Heart Foundation in Australia over their food labeling policy and getting a fair amount of publicity to boot . She regurgitates enough low carb/paleo dogma in such a condensed and admirable stream of woo vomit to fill a decent sized echo chamber. When enough excrement is thrown some of it sticks- ditto dogma.

Bris Vegas said...

The Heart Foundation is a fundraising organisation. It is not a scientific body.

The Heart Foundation pretends that the Heart Tick is based on sound nutritional principles. In reality virtually any processed product can qualify for a Heart Tick including pizza, fries and ice cream - if the manufacturer pays a massive licence fee. [Back in the 80s one of my friends was the Chief Chemist of a small company that made trans-fat free margarine. They couldn't afford the Heart Tick despite producing the "healthiest ' product on the market.]

Big companies use the Heart Tick as a marketing gimmick. Small companies can't afford the exhorbitent fees. The consumer is the loser.

Screennamerequired said...

Oh lord she really needs to watch plant positives Ancel keys videos. He destroyed that myth she seems to certain of. That will teach her the dangers of relying on bloggers like Mark sisson for information instead of actually researching the subjects for herself. I'm sure she, like everyone else will dismiss him in the first 30 seconds because of his voice or the fact that he's vegan.

carbsane said...

Did you post in the right thread? Seems out of place here.

ZM said...

Well, speaking for myself, I dismiss "plant positive" not because of his voice or that he's a vegan, but rather because he has no clue what he's talking about.

Tsimblist said...

He is responding to Lighthouse Keeper's reference to the Heart Foundation in Australia. It seems appropriate to me. The Heart Foundation's Heart Tick has been criticized by Anthony Colpo in his blog as well.

carbsane said...

Some of PP's stuff seems solid, and then there's other stuff that's way off base. I do like that PP gives citations in his videos that can be checked out. This is a step up from folks throwing out "there's this study that says ..." without even the name of the researcher, to back up a point.

carbsane said...

Sorry, my bad. *I* was on the wrong thread. Reminds self never to respond via email :(

Sanjeev Sharma said...

yeah, "it's X years old"



is so invalidly, bogusly BS. Jimmy, Taubes, the paleos et al are trying all the tricks they can think of to get and stay in the public eye.


For the low carbers[0] PALEO IS A marketing/(perception-management) TRICK to keep themselves relevant. I bet most (the internet marketers whose chosen workhorse is paleo) couldn't care less if paleo is correct or not, tested or not, testable or not, or even if it's coherent and logical. They'll push it as long as it brings in the page hits (SHOUT OUT TO BEN GREEFIELD).



Once the paleo Clydesdale stops pulling the cart many will just pick up a different cart/label/marketing gimmick.



[0] those who are not yet FORMER low carbers.

Sanjeev Sharma said...

The obvious parallel: just how old is
homeopathy
and subluxation theory ?
And all the various Gary Null-isms?

And all the various Mercoma-isms?

And when was Peter Popoff exposed on Carson - more than 20 years ago wasn't it?



Obviously the "you're only bashing" crowd, the "you live only to bash" crowd and the "it's so 2009" crowd can make common cause against anyone who bashes Null, Mercola, chiroquacktic & homeoquacks

Sanjeev Sharma said...

> If your guru's ideas have an expiration date, maybe it's time to find one whose ideas have a longer shelf life
And since many of these are marketers who really don't give a cr*p about paleo, they can use any and all industrial, scientific synthetic agents [1] to extend their messages' shelf lives, and the palatability of their marketing message - its texture, flavour, chewiness and ability to pull in the gullible and keep them in the dark.



[1] marketing lies

Lighthouse Keeper said...

These charities are the soft underbelly of medical science so they will come under attack by those with an agenda to do so.

Bris Vegas said...

Sorry to burst your naivety bubble. The fact is that the food industry financially supports, heavily influences and sometimes totally controls EVERY major nutrition advisory body in the developed world. No major nutrition body ever gives truly independent and unbiased nutrition advice.

The Heart Foundation S-E-L-L-S the Heart Tick to anyone with deep enough pockets. McDonalds Australia paid $330,000 to get the Heart Tick approval for its grease-laden Grand Angus Burger. Yet an apple or banana doesn't get a Heart Tick. Go figure?

Bris Vegas said...

Medical research is a massive bureaucracy that primarily exists to keep medical researchers employed. Curing diseases is a minor and somewhat incidental byproduct of the job creation role.

Sanjeev Sharma said...

There are folks who started out completely valid, with solid skeptical and "scientific" but later had total melt-downs, believing their pet theory/guess/proposal had some kind of magic to it.





It's probably much more useful in the long run to develop a set of generally-applicable heurystics for one's self and avoid any who trigger these.

Here's part of my set:

lack of balance



lack of quality evidence - passing off anecdote and micro-mechanistic reductionist reasoning as if they're as good as randomized, blinded trials. I include rat studies in this - as far as direct applicability to humans, not as far as providing a small amount of support for basic processes.



cherry picking of scientific studies - a big part of this is holding the studies that support one's ideas to a lower standard, and countering studies to impossibly high standards. This is a BIG part of Taubes' ouevre[0].

easy solutions to hard problems

excessively hard/OCD solutions (which do in fact play to a specific market segment) to problems that have non-OCD solutions.

those who fixate on single nutirents (micro or macro) as supersolutions
or super-villains (fructose, iron, carbohydrate, magnesium, fat is
all-good, fat is completely terrible, manganese, wheat's the villain,
wheat's the solution)

And in the case of paleo, reliance on an overarching explanatory framework as proof (IMHO evolution / natural selection should be used in science to generate ideas for further testing ... Violating darwinism is a serious flaw in an idea, but being in sync with Darwinism is not probative)

To answer your question directly though, The "go to folks" for actual advice that I perceive most on this board agree on are Alan Aragon, Lyle McDonald & James Krieger, many like Anthony Colpo as well.


[0] I would have written "corpus" in the past, not ouevre, but I've realized Taubes is an artiste specalizing not in science but in montone speech & writing that use boredumb and hypnosis to get the vulnerable into agreeing with him.

Gonçalo Moreira said...

Thanks for your reply, I agree with the points you mentioned. I already follow Alan Aragon, Lyle, James and Anthony. I was hoping there were different suggestions that I'm not aware of ;) Maybe the only other option is reading the scientific literature myself

carbsane said...

Armi Legge at Impruvism.com is writing some great stuff. He's more fitness, but I like Bryan Chung: http://evidencebasedfitness.net/ Brad Schoenfeld is another: http://www.lookgreatnaked.com/blog/


I've fallen in with a fitness oriented crowd somewhat ;-) but they talk nutrition a lot as well. I'm sure I'm leaving some out. It's slim pickings out there though.

carbsane said...

I just noticed he moved which is why I haven't seen anything new. Doesn't blog all that often but: David Despain http://evolvinghealth.wordpress.com

Sanjeev Sharma said...

> Maybe the only other option is reading the scientific literature myself


Tricky.



Anyone who followed the advice to eat a balanced diet out of the 50s up to the early 70s and not read any of the lit is conceivably better off than someone who fell for some of the science fads that have conceivably

yngvai said...

Hey, Evelyn, nice post! Thanks for the mention. That insulin series remains the most viewed on my site out of all my posts.

Gonçalo Moreira said...

Oh thanks a lot!! I forgot about Bryan Chung and I didn't know Brad Schoenfeld! Nice references. It's interesting that these are mostly fitness oriented blogs. Personally I was searching for more health oriented, since that is my main interest...but it's a start!!! Thanks :)

carbsane said...

Love Richard!

carbsane said...

Deservedly so. Glad you enjoyed :-)

carbsane said...

Yeah, there's not a lot health/nutrition out there. I forgot to mention Stephan Guyenet wholehealthsource.blogspot.com but figured you knew that one.


The paleo nutrition blogs have descended into a cesspool of some sick melange of eating disorders and woo woo and while there are the occasional gems, there's too much junk content to recommend any of it. Most of the WAPF-oriented blogs have gotten sucked into a blog network that uses FB and such to circulate memes and give away kitchen appliances and such.

Gonçalo Moreira said...

Thanks for your comment. You know, I only care about the quality of the information, I don't really care if they are paleo or WAPF-oriented blogs. I can't give up on finding quality health related blogs though, because at the moment I don't really have the time to educate myself enough so that I can read all the primary research myself!!

carbsane said...

I wouldn't care either ... I used to read quite a few here and there. If you'd asked me a year or so ago my list would be different. There is still some good stuff here and there on some blogs, but it is just too hit-or-miss to where I couldn't send anyone there.


If all you get these days are memes on the X number of things wrong with some food, or X foods that are poison, or etc. it's not worth it. That and the woo woo conditions that only "evolutionary medicine" can fix is too much!

Gonçalo Moreira said...

Ok, I'll keep waiting then ;)

ZM said...

Yea, I don't mean to say that all of his claims are off base, only that most are. He deserves just as much a beating as low carbers get here. I mean, the same standards should be applied to everyone.

Sanjeev Sharma said...

for any field there is probably a group that brings a skeptical "A game" but yes the hard part's finding communicators capable of explaining in a way technically-savvy non-specialists can follow.


for anyone personally touched by a condition it's also incredibly hard to live with the time lags on new developments.

David said...

Hi, Evelyn. Where did you get the info about Art Devany? His entire program is based on his own health and experiences. If he is being dishonest this is a big deal.

Up until now, he is the only paleo person I felt good about trusting.

carbsane said...

From De Vany himself on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10200379024626693&set=a.1635241449401.2075611.1487666360&type=1&theater


Joint replacements at his age are pretty common these days, and he's recovered nicely no doubt due to being in good shape beforehand. Still, he needed them.

carbsane said...

Also the couple symbolizing longevity on his new website is a stock photo

http://0101.nccdn.net/1_5/08c/2d9/37f/anti-aging-couple.jpg

http://www.donotlink.com/cwc <- link to his other website

Here's tineye search on it. http://tineye.com/search/680ea9cad7e149223eda03150e69f421fa5e60d5/

Lighthouse Keeper said...

So the saving of hundreds of thousands of lives every year plus alleviating the pain and suffering of millions, preventing epidemic and pandemic outbreaks of infectious disease etc. is just an incidental byproduct of the job creation role?

carbsane said...

I just ignore this utter stupidity.

Lighthouse Keeper said...

With so many nutrition advisory bodies recommending the mediterranean diet lately they must all be in the pocket of Big Olive.

Screennamerequired said...

I never claimed he was right about everything but if he watch all his material. (His newest stuff is really good) You'll at least agree he exposed the paleo diet quite elegantly. He also gives Anthony colpo a pretty brutal smackdown.

ZM said...

Gave Anthony Colpo a brutal smackdown? I think it was quite the opposite. It is not possible for PP to give anyone a smackdown. For example, he even screws up his Gary Taubes series by misinterpreting or putting his vegan spin on a bunch of studies. The reality is that PP belongs in the same hole as most of the people he criticizes.

jesse said...

Ironically those principles that Art DeVany has been following for 30 years are decidedly low carb and with a focus on the detriment of anything but the barest minimum of insulin on health. When I read his private blog he often posted studies showing the negative outcomes associated with insulin levels and he even posted his basal insulin numbers. You say he has gotten the science wrong quite a bit. I'd be interested in hearing what he's gotten wrong. Also, let's say he got it wrong 30 years ago, and figured it out 5 years ago and made changes. According to your statements you would no longer respect him. You have to be careful because you are setting up some hierarchy where only those who happened to have gotten it right on the first try are respectable. He took a stance a long time ago, researched it, confirmed what he was seeing, and since then has dismissed anything that contradicted what he had determined. Personally I respect him quite a bit, though you nailed it with the GSH hawking which has become the dominant message from him as of late. So what'd he get wrong on the science? Since it's science I expect you have scientific proof that he has a bogus interpretation of some bit of science. Since he's not a scientist/researcher himself you must be referring to his interpretation, analysis, or choice of science to believe in.

carbsane said...

With respect to De Vany, I have only read a smattering of his writing and its pretty bad. Sorry. The insulin = low is a gross oversimplification and there's no reason for it to be kept to some bare minimum.


It's not changing ones mind on the basis of truly new information that is a problem for these gurus, it is changing ones mind with the wind and having been so cock sure of the old stuff provide no meaningful turning point as to why the new take.

Then there is the thing about who knew what and when. Taubes has done a huge disservice to the community with his work because he put back forth disproven hypotheses as if they were previously accepted. Many of his references even said so. But lots of people jumped on board, including Sisson without doing any independent thinking on the matter or even noticing that his research left off in the 80's for the most part ... that which was carried forward even that far.


My point mentioning De Vany is that he's around my parents' age. He looks no younger than my father, who is still working and quite an active guy (though exercise is not needed for him!). He has had two joint replacements. Perhaps low carb contributed to that? Who knows. It does not seem to have prevented it. My dad has all his teeth and joints, my Mom has a new knee like De Vany and if it hadn't been for contracting a staph infection and being incapacitated for month to 6 weeks (e.g. 20+ hrs a day in bed, mostly lying down) due to the injury that necessitated it, her recovery would have been no longer than his. Her second implant recovery was quite rapid.


You see, if De Vany is a living example, THAT I do respect. But he also hawks his supplement and makes up all manner of crapola to justify his diet. Mind you, what I've read doesn't hold a candle to the rest of the big names.

jesse said...

maybe if your mom had been using Guardian and following the New Evolution Diet she wouldn't have contracted staph. We'll never know. Anyway I see a severe lack of science debunking in your comment! It's cool, I have never put myself into a camp on this issue. Health is too important to choose sides. I appreciate your sentiment that good advice is not half-baked and ever changing (if you want that just read the conventional news on diet). I was thinking something, in the other comment thread you pointed out that I probably eat a mediterranean diet. You're right, I eat a modified one, lol. It's modified to include ad libitum red meats and as little grains and veggie oils as possible. (gee that sounds like a modified paleo diet). When I spent time in the mediterranean I didn't see anyone avoiding red meat or eggs, but the grains were flowing a plenty. However, I didn't eat at anyone's home so my experience was just as a tourist.

carbsane said...

Sheesh.

jesse said...

didn't mean to throw your mom under the bus... but the bus was running and you trotted her out there without a boarding pass. :)

i was just looking through one of my favorite paleo dogma books and it seems like they do recommend avoiding the most common allergens:

Here are the eight most common food allergies in the U.S. population. These foods account for 90 percent of all food allergies. Notice that milk tops this list. 1. Milk 2. Eggs 3. Peanuts 4. Tree nuts 5. Fish 6. Shellfish 7. Soy 8. Wheat

Cordain, Loren (2011-11-03). The Paleo Answer: 7 Days to Lose Weight, Feel Great, Stay Young (p. 97). John Wiley and Sons. Kindle Edition.

Sanjeev Sharma said...

don't know if you're still around - there are couple I had followed but lost track of - Alex Hutchinson and Paul Ingraham

http://evidencemag.com/the-10-most-credible-health-and-fitness-bloggers-you-can-trust/

http://saveyourself.ca/articles/structuralism.php

Gonçalo Moreira said...

Thanks! I came across that list before but I have to explore those resources a bit more

Post a Comment

Moderation is currently on. Thanks in advance for your patience.

Found something helpful today? Please consider a small donation. Thank you!

Where to now?

align="middle" align="middle"

align="middle" align="middle" align="middle"