The Men Who Made Us Fat

Here's the YouTube playlist for the whole thing:

The Men Who Made Us Fat   Jacques Peretti

A few questions/comments:

1.  Does bread today have more sugar in it (corn syrup), than breads of yesterday?  Talking hamburger buns.  How or why would adding corn syrup to rolls make them last longer as Peretti claims?

2.  Are soft drinks the largest single source of calories in the American diet?  How do we define "source"...

3.  If HFCS (55% fructose/45% glucose vs. 50-50 for sucrose) is sweeter than sugar, is it true what Lustig claims?  If sweeter they should use less in substitute.  Lustig claims they use more.  True?

4.  The Metabolic Experiment:  Subject gets liquified substitutes for his normal diet in hourly portions?  

I would note that Jean-Marc Schwarz has been a co-author on papers with a scientist highly cited here at the Asylum:   Berkeley's Marc Hellerstein.   He talks on the video of sugar being turned to fat, and yet, for example, he's a co-author on this paper.  This is an overfeeding (by 50% energy intake) study showed that at 50% excess carb, DNL increased 10 fold but still amounted to <5g per day.  Given the energy cost of this process, it makes the "fats don't make us fat, but turning sugar into fat does" all the more ridiculous.

5.  Americans eat 90 lbs sugar a year, more than twice what's safe?  This works out to about 1/4 pound per day = 4 oz = 1/2 cup sugar = 8 T = 24 teaspoons sugar per day.  While this is easy if one consumes SSB's, not everyone drinks them (387 calories of sugar per day?), and I would note that a goodly percent of the obese drink diet sodas/drinks.

6.  Calling all internet sleuths!  Please help me out and find where fructose has been found to impair, interfere with, the secretion or action of leptin as Lustig claims.  "When you overload the liver with sugars, leptin simply stops working" ~ Peretti,    "Makes your brain think your starving.  now what you have is a vicious cycle of consumption, disease, addiction.  Which explains what has happened the world over" ~ Lustig.

7.  Americans were duped into eating HFCS sodas by the evil beverage industry ... Brits were eating good old fashioned sucrose because someone invented snacking in the 70's??  In the 70's eating between meals was frowned upon?  I'll let the Brits weigh in on that in your country.  Not here!  In grammar school we had scheduled snack time mid-morning, and whether I went home or to a friend's house after school, there was a snack to be had before heading out to play.  I was a baby sitter and camp counselor and giving kids snacks was a big part of those duties.  

8.  Brits eat less at home or home-cooking --> caloric intake went up.  Oh wait, didn't Peretti say you guys weren't eating more??

9.  Snacks = sugar.  OK, yeah, Doritos, chips and dips, crackers, Tostinos, etc.etc. -- lots of snacks are not sugarific.   

10.  Did Brits just get freezers in the late 70's??  

11.  And again ... the number of calories went up dramatically.  They talk about pre-prepared meals but only show eating desserts.  Nobody thinks cake is a meal fer cryin' out loud!

12.  1974 McDonalds lands in England.  Peretti went for his 10th birthday.  Shows footage of McD's, Burger King and Pizza Hut with pics of the sweet stuff.  Yes, there's sweet stuff at each of these places.  Moreso today than in the 70's by the way.  Then they sold burgers.  Yes, soda and other carbs, and some sweets like pies, shakes and ice cream, but McD's & Co. are not the conduit to sugar absent a ton of calories from fat and starch (not fructose!).

13.  False choice -- what causes heart disease.  Sugar OR fat.  Still don't get this, the USDA pyramid NEVER gave condoned high sugar consumption.

14.  What's with the creamy milky and sugary coffee footage back dropping the  Yudkin stuff?  The American Starbucks addiction if BOTH sugar and fat.  

15.  Interesting discussion of food reward.  Obese woman rates high calorie foods (including pizza, burgers and cakes) more favorably than low calorie ones (broiled fish and veggies, salad).

16.  Overeating is not down to greed.  I very much dislike the constant equating of overeating = gluttony = moralistic definition of greed.

17.  Low fat made us fat.  Yeah, right.  Every fattening calorific food they showed throughout Parts I-III were low fat.  Ha!  Report moderated fat, salt AND sugar.  Only somehow the sugar lobby buried the report?!  Tie it in with tobacco.   Sugar barely mentioned in the final report.  And yet along with added fats, there it sat atop the food pyramid for decades.  And in the headline in the paper shown in the footage?  See for yourself!

18.  Gary Taubes is a "science historian" (not a "food historian")

19.  After Gary talks about low fat junk foods, they show a picture of skim milk.  I don't know how many of you remember, but non-fat dry milk powder used to be an economical source of protein long before any nutritional edicts came down.  I'm as much against processed low fat crap as I am against high fat processed crap, including the processed low carb crap being pushed by Gary Taubes' pal Jimmy Moore for years now.

20.  Next up Lustig who says kids won't drink low fat milk w/o chocolate.  Back when I was a kid, lots of us didn't like the taste of whole milk alone ... myself included.

21.  Take out the fat, but didn't care about calories.  Replaced fat with ... guess what ... sugar.  Earth to people with no life experience perspective on this.  Chocolate whole milk and mixes to get you to drink it (Quik, Ovaltine?!) are nothing new.  Oh, but the Snackwells replaced fat with sugar.  Sigh.  They are discussing mayo.  Well, my real, full-fat, Hellman's mayo (shoot me, I've got a jar in the fridge!) lists sugar on the label, but 0g carb/serving.  According to the website, Hellman's light has food starch and xanthan gum (identified as ingredients not in regular mayo) listed after oil and on down the list, and 1g carb/serving.  Sugar is in there, but likely in the same proportion.  But the more Taubes and Lustig repeat this lie, the more it becomes "fact" that evil food manufacturers have replaced fat with sugar and made us obese.

22.  Peretti:  Any potential benefit from low fat was canceled out by added sugar.  (paraphrase)  Sigh.  Taubes:  LF meant if a food didn't have fat in it, it couldn't make you fat.  Yeah Gary, every diet book in the 80's listed Coke and OJ on its lists of foods to "eat without restriction" ... right?  Double sigh.  More on Snackwells.  Yeah, what a debacle.  But ANYONE who went on a diet (well except for Atkins), looked on the label for the calories.  Sad to see Marion Nestle fall into this trap.  Still this low fat = healthy and slimming by default doesn't sound like such an impossible trap for folks to fall for in the context of all the low carbers pushing their frankenfoods and recipes for home-made junk food.

23. Iraq war footage??

24. Marion Nestle talks food politics.  Check out her blog, and I hear from a reliable source her new book is a good read:  Why Calories Count: From Science to Politics

OK ... this week he goes Spurlock on us with a super-sized discussion on portion sizes.  


cwaiand said…
another useless shit video that will help no one.
i love the"soda is responsible"i have never in my life drank pop or fruit juice or booze or beer.i drink water and black coffee and a little milk.sure was not a factor in my weight gain.
CarbSane said…
Yeah, not that I ever drank soda/juice much as a kid (very rare, juices were small glasses, diluted), but when I started watching my weight, they were out. I don't think I've knowingly drank a real soda in 30 years.
@cwaiand, actually, I think it's a pretty interesting video. But I guess my confirmation bias is anti-food industry so I guess I would.
SamAbroad said…
Hey Evelyn,

I'm 29 and live in Ireland, and I remember when we got our first deep freezer in the 1980's.

I'm disappointed overall in the documentary, they could have focused less on sugar and more on the overall hyper-palatability of the processed food that became ever more a part of our daily intake.

I know you probably disagree with me but I do feel that being obese is so little to do with will power and all to do with a toxic food environment. I eat healthily but the only way I can manage this is to really minimise out-sourcing my food preparation to other people. If I eat out I have a bigger appetite in general. I find it effortless to control my appetite when I prepare from scratch everything I cook.
Susanne said…
Ooh! This one I know. Bread and sugar that is.

Traditional breads are made with flour, water, salt, yeast (either domesticated or "wild" starters like sourdough). Doesn't matter if we're talking pita, French baguette, German 80% rye/20% wheat, San Francisco sourdough. If you buy or make these breads you notice they stale/dry out very quickly, sourdoughs lasting a little longer because of the acidity. In rural Greece we used to buy bread from the local lady with her wood-fired oven. We had to get it fresh every morning otherwise it would lacerate your gums. (The reason French toast, grilled cheese, croutons, bread pudding were invented -- they're thrifty uses for that day old bread.)

Fats, eggs, sugar added to bread help retain moisture and freshness longer, and also produce the softness and fluffiness that Americans now are used to in bread. Lots of the other "additives" in the kind of bread sold on a supermarket aisle (as opposed to a traditional bakery) are also for preservative purposes. People complain about "additives everywhere" but they would also complain if they bought bread and the next day it was hard and dry. Otherwise they would have to go out and buy it every single morning, as is traditionally done.

On #7: my grandma and cousins were German, not Brits, but mealtimes were faithfully observed, breakfast-lunch-dinner, no such thing as "snacking" at home. Or if so only an apple. The exception was if there was a visitor in the afternoon: there would be cake and coffee, or on a Sunday you would take a scenic walk in the landscape somewhere, and there might be ice cream, if you were very very lucky. (This would be two golf ball sized "balle", with a small "waffle" or in a cone.) Also sometimes in great terror of our lives, and after mounting a lookout, we kids would search out grandma's stash of special cookies for visitors only, and sneak one or two. This was in the 1970s. I personally think this kind of meal tradition is a big contributor to the delay in the "diseases of affluence" in Europe and other areas, but of course they are catching up too.

On the freezer, it is very possible that grandma only got a "powered" freezer in the 1960s. I can ask Mom. Before that it would have been the iceman. This was in a medium sized but prosperous German town. Her whole life her fridge was very small, not much larger than what we would call a "dorm fridge" today, and she walked to the grocer's every day as was common. (This was probably one of the things which kept her mobile and fairly healthy even as she aged.) Her freezer was about the size of two shoeboxes.

Don't forget rationing and privation lasted a considerable time in Europe and Britain after WWII was over. I think lots of stuff was still restricted in Britain in the 1950s. Check out "the Supersizers eat" on YouTube. Not THAT Supersizers: it's two young Brits exploring food history in a very funny way, and I remember they had a 1950s episode. Their 1970s episode talks about the excitement of frozen pre-prepared food.
Stephan Guyenet said…
There are two additional episodes of the documentary. The description of episode 2 (which airs Thursday) says "Exploring the history of the supersized fastfood meal and other promotional tactics."

Hard to tell from that, but I doo not think this is just going to be a LC love-fest. I think the sugar POV in episode 1 was related to the focus on US policy choices.
Susanne said…
Oops, that ended up in this thread, so I'll put this in to make it relevant: I never got into the "pop" habit, thank God, because we weren't quite Americanized enough yet growing up, and although we had Kool-aid you kind of outgrow that, you know? But my daily consumption of "healthy" orange juice ad libitum as an adult almost certainly contributed to my overweight. I went through a gallon of frozen reconstituted a week in my heavier days.
My dad had the old Cuban habit (he came from rural Cuba) of getting up early, going to the bakery, buying the day's braed. Cuban bread sucks the next day. Hard as a rock, powdery dry. So, even in his seventies, he'd walk the 8 blocks to the bakery, get his bread loaves, walk back, have breakfast. He probably burned up a good number of the calories in his slice of bread. :D

I think if we all had to walk a half mile to get our morning bread, we might be less heavy. And I say that having given up gluten. :D
A 60% fructose diet? Who has that? A Fruitarian?
bentleyj74 said…
Speculating whether even a fruitarian would get 60% fructose. Those high cal density fruits are usually not super fructose heavy. Bananas, dates, avocados?
Well, I just can't imagine who eats that way OTHER than MAYBE fruitarians. I'm one of the most fruit-addicted folks I know (when I don't control myself, I could easily eat 10+ servings of fruit a day, and my middle sis is the same. We got it from parents, who adored fruit, and I was having tropical fruit smoothies in the 60s, before fruit smoothies became "the thing"). Heck, I and my sis are the only people I know who had actual FRUIT BINGES. (I could sit and eat 10 oranges in a binge mode.) Now, I use it as dessert, and easily eat 5 servings in my two daily meals. I really love fruit. But I don't see folks eating tons and tons of fruit, and I know NOT ONE SOUL who would quality as a 60% fructose eater Which makes me wonder how this study applies to real life at all!
Man, I was trying to control my book addiction, but I just kindled that Nestle book. Read the preview and it looked good. Too bad Spurlock didn't ask me on the street re calories. We learned what they were back in Nutrition class (ie, that heat energy to raise, yadda yadda) in the 80s. :D Note that one reviewer pulled out the Good Calories, Bad Calories/Taubes card to critique the Nestle book.
This study doesn't apply at all to real, whole food eaters. But it may well apply to someone who gets 100s (or more) of their calories from soda or other HFCS-laden foods, since HFCS is 55% fructose.

The study only had two arms. Yes, 60% fructose is hard to do in reality ... most (save that woman who died from her 2-gallon coke habit) don't eat a diet that high in fructose. But whose to say where the bend in the presumed J-curve actually is?
Sanjeev said…
3. If HFCS (55% fructose/45% glucose vs. 50-50 for sucrose) is sweeter than sugar, is it true what Lustig claims? If sweeter they should use less in substitute. Lustig claims they use more. True?
His cost accounting or economics isn't making sense to me at all. These days if you want more sweetness, add the cheapest sweetener available, sucralose.

There's an even sweeter (per gram) chemical becoming available; an analogue of aspartame.
Chris said…
Sorry for misleading you - I thought i heard them say food historian.

Re freezers, we didn't get one until the late 1970's or maybe late if I remember. And then it was only a small thing on top of the fridge
CarbSane said…
Hi Sam, I actually agree with you regarding the toxic food environment. I wrote here quite often in the earlier days about "passive overeating" and engineered foods and all that. Ultimately, however, we do have the choice not to eat those foods ... and it's not more expensive. It's easy to fall into those "outsourced" foods. I don't know that they make me hungry so much as they are easy to overeat -- if that makes sense.

Interesting replies about freezers. My parents put a big fridge sized one in our basement in the late 60's to freeze garden veggies and fruits for the winter. I know there was an even older one in my Granny's basement. I don't recall ever having a fridge w/o a freezer.
Dracil said…
It might also apply to the people who, in the sake of reducing calories, go for the new drinks that use crystalline fructose as their sweeteners. Like those Neuro Bliss/Smart/etc. drinks advertising 35 calories per bottle.
CarbSane said…
No probs ... I don't think historian iaccurate either. As I said above, appreciate the freezer input -- puts you behind us a ways.
CarbSane said…
I recall when I went on my first diet that fructose was nominally sweeter than sucrose. So the theory was you could use less, and back then it was used for diabetics and readily available. I never found it noticeably sweeter.

What bothers me is this claim that say there was 20g sugar in something. Lustig is claiming that 20g HFCS is sweeter -- the drink stuff replaces 5% glucose with fructose, would you notice that?, the food HFCS is actually lower in fructose (as low as 40%). But that to get you hooked they not only replaced 20g sucrose with HFCS, but replaced it with, say, 25g.

I dunno. Even with my then sweet tooth, when they replaced saccharin with aspartame in sodas I did not like the new taste as it was toooo sweet.
MD said…
Soda is an easy culprit. But many people drink their calories in the form of lattes, "healthy" things like Naked Juice & Odwalla & fruit juices. i live in San Francisco, where literally no one would be caught dead with something as uncool as a Pepsi or Coke, but an organic soda with cane sugar? Hell yes. Very easy to drink tons of calories even if you don't drink evil soda.
Unknown said…
@Princess Dieter: That sure brings back memories, while I was growing up breakfast consisted of Cuban bread with butter and milk with coffee in it. When I started school I refused to drink the cartons of milk they gave us because there was no coffee in it.
CarbSane said…
@MD: Certainly all liquid calories can be suspects. Perhaps those drinking juice instead of soda because it's healthy have a gripe, but anyone who has ever dieted knows there's calories in all that stuff and wouldn't be drinking it thinking it wouldn't make them fat b/c it had no fat in it. The Starbucks is more fat than sugar calories for most too. I got in the habit recently of measuring my half & half for my coffee b/c it's just too easy to add too much free pouring.

Folks who drink a lot of calories have it easy in a way -- at least initially. They will almost invariably lose weight just switching to water. But even that seems to be an unnatural obsession these days. Imagine what people had to do when every car didn't come with 10 cup holders!
CarbSane said…
Hi Susanne, I can see the lasting longer from a moistness point of view. Maybe it's just the way Peretti says it, but I just am not buying that hamburger buns of today contain significantly more sugar than they did growing up. Wonder white bread was the moistest stuff, and I never understood my friends needing to cut the crust off of it.

Personally I think McD's and especially Pizza Hut make poor examples of America going low fat and substituting sugar.
SamAbroad said…
We do have a choice certainly, I have made it, but it makes me a total outcast in some ways, the social pressure to eat bad food is ever-present. The minute I have to travel for work I have to make massive dietary compromises just not to starve.

What is the point in having a choice if the right choice is constantly more and more difficult to make?
CarbSane said…
Interesting, but WOW, 60% fructose? For 6 months -- that's ages in a rat's life! That seems irrelevant. Even if someone gets 50% of their calories from soda, that's 25% fructose.

Look at Figure 1. After 6 months on a 60% fructose diet, the rats were the same as controls. No fattier, no leaner, similar weights, and all that. But they were leptin resistant, and got fatter than the other rats when transitioned to a high fat diet.

Moral of the story ... Fructose isn't fattening unless you eat a high fat diet ;) In other words, IF we really replaced fat with sugar, it might not be so bad ... but of course this IS ridiculously extreme.

It's odd how in Table 1, we see leptin levels are similar, it's only that resistance seems to manifest with the inability to sense fat intake somehow.
CarbSane said…
Yep, it's difficult no doubt. I'm not sure what's more tough sometimes, more socializing as a single, or having less control over what is kept in the house or spouse's eating habits.
CarbSane said…
In the piece they said HFCS costs 1/3rd less. Would seem if they added 1/3rd more, that would cancel it all out, right?
Nigel Kinbrum said…
I just watched Episode 1 on BBC iPlayer on the recommendation of my (skinny) ex-G/F.

If it shocks viewers into eschewing junk foods & sugary drinks and telling their friends about the dirty tricks & manipulation by "Big Food", it's served a useful purpose.
Steven Hamley said…
From Jullianne Taylor's analysis on Durianrider's diet, he gets only 22% calories from fructose.

60% is just not a realistic amount. I would bet that if something 'healthy' like the long chain omega 3's provided 60% of your calories, you would be in serious trouble
Eric said…
Why are we shocked when food companies make food that is tasty, cheap, and have valuable shelf properties?

Food has become integral to every aspect of our day and social activities and we are shocked to find people overeating.

We eschew personal responsibility for those in bad situation from controlling what goes into their body and blame anyone else for this "toxic environment".

Regulations and taxation are coming unless a serious change of direction is taken.
Mike Howard said…
Evelyn you may have seen this already but my friend/colleague Alan Aragon wrote a pretty strong rebuttal to the Lustig video. In the thread Lustig himself comes out with 3 swings (and 3 misses) trying to defend his position.

A little side note: "Lustig" is Swedish for "silly".

Here's the blog:
Susanne said…
Well, on the hamburger buns, they may not indeed have changed very much, in the US at any rate. What I was trying to say was, in Germany at least in the 1970s and even 1980s, soft fluffy bread like hamburger buns was very rare, and is still not really the favored type. My grandmother would have classified that kind of dough as "for cake", and cake was a special occasion thing. "Normal" bread there is the straight flour-water-salt type, with variation added using different types of grains/seeds for decoration. It's possible that in the UK it was too, for longer than in the US. Although some of the industrial processes that produce fluffy bread were invented there, and are now widespread. (The main quick-rise fluffy bread one is called the Chorleywood process and was invented, according to Wikipedia, in 1961.)

In any case I agree that sugar in bread is not the main problem, but the general quantity of consumption. Although personally I suspect that excess bread/pastry consumption is encouraged by the fluffiness and softness of US style bread, a la David Kessler. Traditional breads tend to be denser and more chewy, and have tougher crusts, and for that reason I think provide a bit more satiation. Traditional North European majority % ryes are cut in 1/4" slices, and they are still a positive labor to eat compared to a US supermarket whole wheat slice, even the "artisan" type from the deli. You eat that, you KNOW you have eaten a piece of bread; on the other hand the last hamburger bun I had slipped down with me hardly noticing.
Nigel Kinbrum said…
In Is Sugar Fattening?, there's a graph of consumption vs sugar concentration for rats.

There's a "sweet spot", where consumption is maximised. I believe that the "sweet spot" for young people occurs at a higher sweetness than for older people. Therefore, the use of HFCS in those days allowed for a 25% sweeter taste (at a 30% lower cost) that was more appealing to young people without losing its appeal to older people. Ker-ching! <- the sound of cash registers.
Nigel Kinbrum said…
It's the massive behind-the-scenes manipulation of:-
a) the general population (by the use of cunning marketing techniques)
b) governments (by bribery) &
c) the World Health Organisation (by threatening to withdraw funding)
by "Big Food" that's shocking, rather than the products themselves.
CarbSane said…
Yes, I've seen that. I remember at the time thinking Lustig did not do too well with his efforts. I didn't really have the inclination to do the full fact check on that video back then either, but one part really stuck out to me. Coupled with his lame retorts and Alan's arguments, I pretty much wrote the guy off. Eh ... the internet is a fascinating place sometimes! He seemingly keeps gaining popularity (notoriety?) while his science gets more and more mangled :( Anyway, I recall in the first video he pointed out that Coke had increased its salt content to get people to drink more and get hooked. That didn't ring true or pertinent. He's all about hype to drive an agenda.
bentleyj74 said…
Having traveled extensively on a regular basis without any trouble eating normally I'd have to go with the up close and personal "spouse's eating habits". That's the one that sunk me :) It wouldn't have sunk everyone though, my mother for example would have divorced anyone who made themselves or their habits a liability to her preferences or goals. Different strokes.
Eric said…

You can no more blame corporations for doing what is in their best interest than you can blame a cat for eating bird. Most of the propaganda against "big food" is just recycled tripe that has been battered around for years. The facts are pretty simple, food got cheap in the 70's and 80's thanks to strong global production and subsidies ( which has all but eliminated starvation in industrialized countries ) and also lead to a overall higher consumption ( basic economics, something gets cheaper you can buy more of it ).

I don't blame people for getting fat, it's easy, I do expect that once they have the information in hand that they take responsibility for their own bodies rather than blaming everyone else for the situation.
CarbSane said…
Thanks for bringing this up Steven.

I was just thinking ... you put Stephan's recent blog post/study where they had to add some fat to sugar water to make rats fat, and how even the 60% fructose rats didn't get fat until they were switched to a high fat diet ... seems you need fat to get fat >:)
Geoff 99 said…
Personally I feel the low fat message and dietary guidelines have been used for decades now to sanction and encourage the over consumption of a variety of high energy foods.
A 99% fat free label is generally seen as an "eat as much as you like, you cannot gain weight" sticker. It helps to reinforce the message with some pictures of thin and attractive people :-)

Things start to go bad of course, when, in addition to this excess of "safe" low fat food, many still consume the same amount of dietary fat as in the bad old days (even if it is cheap PUFA and MUFA in a variety of cleverly engineered forms). High energy, low fat food may not deposit fat per se, but it is amazingly fat sparing. Dietary fat that was once burnt for energy now avoids that fate and ends up in permanent storage.

The last thing we need is another stupid war on one nutrient. Experience tells us it will inevitably become a green light to some new form of excess.
v/vmary said…
whatever happened to the FBI thing?
Scott Russell said…
My favorite example of low fat = high sugar is frozen yogurt. Froyo is rampant nowadays. Its actually becoming difficult to find just plain ice cream in my area, ( not that I want to)
Alex said…
I have it on good authority that Evelyn is now posting on her blog from Guantanamo Bay.
Sanjeev said…
> posting on her blog from Guantanamo Bay


The initials for my full name are SKS - I was cowering under the covers, expecting a knock on the door @ any time ; )
Nigel Kinbrum said…
"Most of the propaganda against "big food" is just recycled tripe that has been battered around for years." I disagree. There was evidence of dodgy dealings by the American Sugar Association in the BBC programme. A former coke executive has apologised for the dirty tricks his company played to maximise profits. Edward Bernays perfected the art of propaganda, I mean public relations, to manipulate the masses. His methods have been used very successfully by Big Food.

"...and subsidies ( which has all but eliminated starvation in industrialized countries )" Large, profitable multinationals receive large subsidies. Amazing what a bit of bribery can do, isn't it?

"I do expect that once they have the information in hand..." What information? One of Bernays' tricks was the creation of pro-Big Food organisations to churn out biased pro-Big Food information, to baffle the public with bullshit.

To deny that the above stuff goes on is....Naïve? Deluded? Words fail me!
Mike Howard said…
I hear ya... the coke thing was a bit absurd. I had to call him on his outrageous claims that drinking a can of coke was like drinking a slice of pizza. Huh? Do a little fact-checking, however and you learn that most pop is about 55mg of sodium whereas most slices of pizza range from 800-1000mg's... but what's a 1000mg's anyway, right? same same.
CarbSane said…
NADA! Poof ... like nothing ever happened. No comment from Jimmy Moore and apparently the cruisers couldn't care less who is speaking because both replacements for the great Messiah ended up being no shows. Not another public peep from any paleo big wigs.

I think it was all a hoax. If the FBI is still on that case it is looking at the person who had three fingers pointing back at him while he was pointing at the three c's.
CarbSane said…
Yeah, but is there a lot more suger in the frozen yogurt than in Ben & Jerry's? This is where they lose me. There may be a bit more, but you can't just dump sugar and make something sickeningly sweet to make it taste better. Usually these things have fillers, gums, stabilizers, etc. that replace the mouth-feel of fat and give bulk. Cellulose, guar, carageenan, Fibersol >:)
CarbSane said…
Perhaps some see fat free as a green light, but those watching their weight will always look at calories. That label IS deceptive in terms of making foods seem healthier than they are. Soups are notorious because by weight they're almost all low fat.
Woodey said…
I have to agree with you Evelyn. Me thinks it was a publicity stunt gone awry. Kruse has committed social suicide and appears to be a thing of the past. He might try again and appear as a blip on the radar screen, then disappear in the Bermuda Internet Triangle.
MD said…
I really think being surrounded by people who are weight and diet concsious skews how we view things. Most people have no idea how many calories are in the things they eat and drink, especially people who have never been overweight, or people who are overweight and have never dieted. Even people who are supposedly dieting and who stick to it for like 2 days because they read an 100 word blurb in a magazine have no idea.

Reading downthread, I can also say that the majority of non-dieting, non-food obsessed people see something that says "fat free" or "sugar free" or whatever they presume to be "healthy" and will assume that it will somehow help them either lose or maintain weight. A great example is the assumption that a salad is automatically a better choice than a burger and fries at a fast food joint, when in actuality, calorie-wise, it's usually better to just get a plain burger and small fries.
Galina L. said…
I think often the concern about healthiness gives a green light to many things - fat free for people who count calories,carb-free for people who eat LC diets, believers in a fiber or eating a lot of fresh produce could eat too often or too much because their food is high in fiber or some desirable nutrient, exercisers overdo their carbo-loading, some snack every 2 hours in order to "keep metabolism running". It looks for me that our attempts eating healthy and right makes us fat as well.
Mike said…
I've been thinking a lot along these lines recently. Humans are instinctively compelled to game the system. Whether it's working, shopping or dieting, we're always trying to figure out how to get the most amount of reward with the least amount of effort and avoid getting punished in the process.

Both LC and LF diets tend to work initially because they subvert the impulse to overconsume by establishing a set of rules that makes it difficult to do so. After some time and experience, the dieter figures out how to overconsume again within that new set of rules. Then they blame the diet or their "broken metabolism" when it stops working.

That's not to say there aren't genuine metabolic reasons for people to stall out short of their goals, but I think most people slip because they get too good at gaming the system and don't modify the rules to keep them honest.

You can cheat the game but you can't cheat your metabolism.
Eric said…
So you believe that PR is so strong that people no longer have control over what they eat and drink?
Nigel Kinbrum said…
What I believe is that an increasing number of people (not everybody, obviously) are being influenced into making bad dietary choices by a variety of methods, not just PR.

Do you read Obesity Panacea?
v/vmary said…
i asked jack on his blog th exact question i asked here. he or his "marketing monkeys" erased it. jack still pops up on the de vany forum from time to time.
Geoff 99 said…

Growing up as the only fat kid in a class of 30 during the 1960's, I have always had an interest in the various weight loss strategies that have come along. Back then ELMM was pretty much the standard advice.

However, during the 80's the new "low fat" message began to take over around me and with it the well marketed but erroneous belief that calories didn't really count and it was possible to somehow cheat the system. Calorie counting and moderation seemed to fall by the wayside for many as they ramped up their consumption of low fat food.

The number of times I was told that a huge bowl of pasta or similar was low fat, and therefore not fattening is quite amazing in retrospect. No-one seemed to notice the triple serving of rich sauce poured on top! It seemed like the more low fat food you consumed, the more you were entitled to indulge on the side. You didn't need to count the calories, just look for the low fat sticker.

Despite the failure of the low fat message to deliver the expected results, the idea that there is a magic loop hole continues to prevail. Low fat, low carbohydrate, high fiber, paleo & etc. are all strategies that may work if rigorously adopted as part of a controlled diet - but more than not they are used as "green lights" to over-consumption of "safe" foods, supplanting the calories count message.

From my experience I would tend to disagree that "those watching their weight will always count calories". That may have been true at one time, but now it seems the various "loop hole" foods are often the first choice of many seeking to lose a bit of weight - with the the risk of long term failure and inadvertent weight gain.

Funny thing is, in 2012 I still find myself with roughly the same body shape as in my 20's, only now I am not the exception - in fact I now look pretty normal, slightly overweight but not obese.
Geoff 99 said…

I agree entirely.

I have fallen into this trap on more than one occasion :-)

Deceit is a highly successful strategy in the market place because we are so often looking for a free ride.
CarbSane said…
P.S. Feinman likes to play on Lustig meaning "merry" in German. So in my ancestral languages (mostly German with a splash of Swede) he's Merry Silly. Hmmph. :D
Galina L. said…
My mom binges on fruits, she also used to eat too much of dried apricots and prunes out of believe it would regulate her GI tract. I love fruits as well, and really limit it now.
Eric said…
Until we accept that Obesity is a lifestyle choice ( either voluntarily or by apathy ) no real fix can every be made without crushing regressive taxation on food. To blame "big food" is a dangerous cop-out that reinforces the negative cycle.
bentleyj74 said…
I love fruit and eat more of it than average...such a relief not to fear it :)
v/vmary said…
actually, jack has posted twice on the de vany blog about his new series of posts. i think he is trying to drive traffic to his site.
Unknown said…
It isn't a cop-out, it is an acceptance of classical psychological grooming techniques that have produced therapists, linguists, analysers, shrewd marketeers, and other assorted 'social-engineers'.

Yes, people need to be empowered with information and self-responsibility. No one is arguing AGAINST such such a proactive philosophy that seeks to promote personal and situational awareness. However, to insist that the above-mentioned factors have no play, and that we should -- more or less -- trivialise the notion that people are being manipulated into making bad choices, and should just ignore the entire equation, is the kind of oversimplification that reinforces an even darker kind of negative cycle.
Galina L. said…
different people have different concerns, so different things bring them relieve. I want to stop being concerned about weight regain, and so far it looks like the IF pattern of eating my LC food ( 6 - 8 hours eating window, no snacks besides 2 - 3 meals) takes care of it. Small fruit could be eaten as a part of meal, no "green light" for anything. Being in control brings me more relieve than eating any food.
Galina L. said…
When I was growing-up, most families in Russia observed meal times and avoided snacking as well. Eating at random times foods like sandwiches or sweets with tea instead of proper breakfast, dinner with obligatory soup and supper was considered a dysfunctional behavior, like sleeping till noon, or keeping a messy house. I remember not being offered a choise of food ever as a child (food was just served on my plate, it was a common opinion that children were not mature enough to make a reasonable food choice, like no one consulted a child about his/her bed time) and I was not allowed to open a fridge by myself if adult was present at home. Yes, the standard size for a piece of bread is different in Russia - 1/2 of a normal US slice. It was and is normal to eat stale bread, when it gets too hard, it is processed into crutones or used in cooking, never wasted.
Nigel Kinbrum said…
Where's ItsTheWooo when you need her? Eric is arguing that there's been an epidemic of Gluttony & Sloth (a lifestyle choice) since the 1970's and that "Big Food" has had sweet-F/A to do with it. Therefore...

[Irony&Sarcasm]Increasing numbers of people all around the world are eating & drinking increasing amounts of crap and becoming increasingly sedentary of their own free will, because being a lazy pig is infectious.[/I&S]
Mr. Wrong said…
Isn't a high sugar diet a high fat diet? What happens to all of the excess glucose in a glycogen replete body?
Susanne said…
Slightly but not completely OT Evelyn, the fructose debate got me looking up evidence for fructose metabolism in other primates (since primates are descended from fructivore ancestors, which would presumably be well-equipped to process fructose). I found this intriguing article which talks about the relationship between fructose metabolism, the "knockout" of the gene for vitamin C production in primates, and uric acid. This is suggested to have happened in the Miocene-Eocene partly because that's when Old World and New World monkey/ape ancestors diverged, and also because during this period you see the development of seasonality in world climate which encourages new adaptations to deal with winter/summer variations in food availability. (They also address the "thrifty-gene" hypothesis.)

The article won a prize, and has some commentary, but I am not equipped to judge the biochemistry discussion: "The Evolution of Obesity: Insights from the Mid- Miocene. "
CarbSane said…
It has to be chronic and caloric excess. I'm overdue for installment 3 on Lustig's Skinny on Obesity. You cannot compare the metabolic fate of a macro with the macro composition of the diet. He says in III that sugar is both carb + fat because glucose goes into the glycolytic pathway while fructose goes into the fat pathway. Yes ... eventually SOME does get converted to fat (and if dietary saturated fat is not bad, why is this bad anyway?) but it goes through carbohydrate metabolic paths (converted to glucose, lactate). This argument of his is almost as silly as those who claim all reducing diets are high fat b/c we're burning body fat as "calories in".

Sugar + Fat = highly palatable. Think chocolate & ice cream. Starch + Fat = highly palatable. Think cream mashed potatoes, fried rice, pizza. Sugar itself is not the same as sugar + fat. Sure some can be sugar junkies (have known quite a few Coke - capital C - addicts) but I don't think that's really behind all of this.
bentleyj74 said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
bentleyj74 said…

My fears never involved weight regain, it wasn't so very long ago that the battle cry involved fruit being candy bars on trees that will give you cancer AT LEAST in their spare time when they aren't too busy undermining the fabric of society as a whole. It wasn't directed at your comment or concerns with fruit.

If a person has a fruit "binge" it wouldn't cause any sort of weight shift provided that they experienced satiation after in which case the fruit wasn't a binge so much as a meal. Eating a bunch of fruit on top of all the other stuff you will also eat of course would not have the same outcome.

Last night I had a 400+ calorie king sized candy bar for dinner...was it a binge? Was I out of control? I ate in, enjoyed it, and was satisfied till morning. In fact I'm still not hungry and will probably wait for lunch. Some could say...well that means you are physiologically normal congratulations and step off. Yet, I have gotten fat before so doesn't that mean that there *is* something wrong with me? I'd just be naturally resistant or neurotically white knuckling it while starving otherwise right? How can a former fat girl who got fat eating candy bars eat them now in large servings and NOT have the same result? That's against the law or something isn't it?

A little further down there's a really good discussion basically re environment vs self control that I've been wanting to reply to but hadn't quite articulated what I wanted to say....then I read the "Go Kaleo" blog yesterday [not sure which poster here owns that] and there was a super good post...really compelling...that finally let me put my thoughts in order. She was talking very honestly about the real costs of having the sort of self control involved in what I call moving against the tide. It's exhausting and she's dead on about the realities for all other aspects of life when your energy is redirected toward a specific isolated goal.

So I agree with her that this is what it's like *when you are moving against the tide* and your goals/desires are incongruent with your environment. People who suggest "self control" or "willpower" are usually people that naturally set their environment up for a win without necessarily even being aware that they are doing it.

They actually are not using willpower at all [less often than average in my observation] on a day to day basis and their self control is directed toward the appropriate part of the equation usually also without their conscious awareness. This gives the impression that they are either contending for the title of Atlas or just really smug and ignorant instead of conveying the *profoundly* useful information and perspective that they do have about how to navigate your personal landscape and cause it to bear the fruit YOU want efficiently. How to do it without having a daily fight with yourself involving a lot of decision making and throat slitting and relationship conflict.

I think environment is *extremely* relevant but it's broad and vast [a lot more than food and marketing is involved]. People who are on the wrong side of the power curve will STILL BE THERE when it costs more to buy a coke or when the Happy Meals aren't allowed to have toys in them. I think it is always worth the effort and study to be free than to be a well managed slave which is the best possible outcome of using taxation and regulation to attempt to generically sanitize my environment for me on my dime. The best possible outcome is not generally the true result in any case.
markgillespie said…
Here is a summary of the two episodes so far from Zoe Harcombe's blog, always good for a laugh:
Galina L. said…
I would feel I cheated myself of normal food and a tasty dinner if I replaced it with a candy bar. It is not a food from my perspective, something like solid version of a meal-replacement shake. Of course, one candy bar wouldn't cause immediate harm. What we do day after day after day for years matters. When group of people changes their traditional habits for a Western diet, it takes them 20 years to develop Western deceases, but cavities, gums inflammation and problem with appendix start in 10 years (if I remember properly what I read in GCBC). If I remember properly, the dose of sugar harmful for health started from 36 lb a year. I am the only member of my family who is concerned about my weight, but my free-from-weight-problems husband and son also eat very little sugar, definitely not everyday. The environment full of fat people inspired us to minimize simple carbs more than if we would be staying in Russia.

I think I am moving against the tide more and more, and it is true about more things than just food. May be it is the "age" thing because I passed 51. When I was younger, I wanted to change my life-style in order to feel that I follow most current trends, to try and adopt new things, to belong to some group of people and their life-style. Now it is the opposite trend, I do more things according to the standards I was tough during my childhood. I don't feel myself aging because I look good and in a good cardio-shape (however my knees require special consideration), but I feel more and more resentful toward our environment, which is pushing us toward premature health loss and weight gain. When I observe people my age who, unlike me, have high blood pressure, take anty-anxiety medication and have much more wrinkles than me and a soft middle-section, their cake and bread eating doesn't feel catching at all. With such mindset I don't have to exercise much of self-control to resist the influence of that environment. It is like taking or not the advise of person you don't trust.
bentleyj74 said…
I would feel I cheated myself of normal food and a tasty dinner if I replaced it with a candy bar."

What is "normal" food? Do you feel similarly cheated if you are prevented by volume limitations from eating ALL foods on your list of allowed foods at once or can I presume you rotate them around and...if is that different at all?
Galina L. said…
Probably, it is all individual, and I think some habits are formed early in life, but I sort of "feel" without thinking that normal food for dinner is a piece of meat or chicken or omelet with side-dish (some veggies+salt+fat+some carbs combination) or soup or salad, or at least a salad - something salty that requires chewing and sitting at the table with other people. A candy-bar or a shake especially sweet one will not fit my idea of a dinner food. I like to cook, to eat slowly cooked food, eating two times a day already cut something off of that food-centered fun, eating some bar instead of dinner would be simply disappointing.
Gys de Jongh said…
I just saw the article below. It states that in the industrial process of making HFCS from corn, dicarbonyl compounds are formed.

Dicarbonyl compounds can react with proteins in your body and are thus dietary source of Advanced Glycation Endproducts (AGE).

AGE's, from the reaction of your blood glucose with your own proteins, cause most complications in T2 like cardiovascular and renal problems.

Vlassara was one of the first to discover that also the dietary AGE's cause problems (See below)

So HFCS contains a contamination that causes complications in T2.

HFCS contains a contamination that is, loosely speaking, one half of your HbA1c. Which will quickly become HbA1c after you have consumed HFCS ....

The industrial contamination in HFCS makes all the difference between eating table sugar and HFCS. Or between eating apples and HFCS.


Anal Bioanal Chem. 2012 Jul;403(10):2923-31. Epub 2012 Mar 1.
Identification and quantification of six major α-dicarbonyl process contaminants in high-fructose corn syrup.

High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a widely used liquid sweetener produced from corn starch by hydrolysis and partial isomerization of glucose to fructose. During these processing steps, sugars can be considerably degraded, leading, for example, to the formation of reactive α-dicarbonyl compounds (α-DCs). The present study performed targeted screening to identify the major α-DCs in HFCS. For this purpose, α-DCs were selectively converted with o-phenylendiamine to the corresponding quinoxaline derivatives, which were analyzed by liquid chromatography with hyphenated diode array-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-DAD-MS/MS) detection. 3-Deoxy-D: -erythro-hexos-2-ulose (3-deoxyglucosone), D: -lyxo-hexos-2-ulose (glucosone), 3-deoxy-D: -threo-hexos-2-ulose (3-deoxygalactosone), 1-deoxy-D: -erythro-hexos-2,3-diulose (1-deoxyglucosone), 3,4-dideoxyglucosone-3-ene, methylglyoxal, and glyoxal were identified by enhanced mass spectra as well as MS/MS product ion spectra using the synthesized standards as reference. Addition of diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid and adjustment of the derivatization conditions ensured complete derivatization without de novo formation for all identified α-DCs in HFCS matrix except for glyoxal. Subsequently, a ultra-high performance LC-DAD-MS/MS method was established to quantify 3-deoxyglucosone, glucosone, 3-deoxygalactosone, 1-deoxyglucosone, 3,4-dideoxyglucosone-3-ene, and methylglyoxal in HFCS. Depending on the α-DC compound and concentration, the recovery ranged between 89.2% and 105.8% with a relative standard deviation between 1.9% and 6.5%. Subsequently, the α-DC profiles of 14 commercial HFCS samples were recorded. 3-Deoxyglucosone was identified as the major α-DC with concentrations up to 730 μg/mL HFCS. The total α-DC content ranged from 293 μg/mL to 1,130 μg/mL HFCS. Significantly different α-DC levels were not detected between different HFCS specifications, but between samples of various manufacturers indicating that the α-DC load is influenced by the production procedures.
PMID: 22382856

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Nov 26;99(24):15596-601. Epub 2002 Nov 12.
Inflammatory mediators are induced by dietary glycotoxins, a major risk factor for diabetic angiopathy.
Vlassara H
PMID: 12429856
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