Showing posts from November, 2012

If you drink OJ, might it just as well be Orange Crush?

I'm sure you've heard it many times -- fruit juices, even unsweetened ones, are still just glasses of sugar, and you might as well be drinking a soda or Tang (remember that?). According to, a cup of orange juice contains 21g sugars .  They don't "itemize" in the OJ entry, but if we look at the ratios  oranges we can calculate that of those 21g, roughly 11 g are sucrose, 4.5 g are glucose and 5.5 g are fructose.  Thus for each cup (8 oz) of OJ, you get around 11g of the dastardly fructose poison.  This is roughly the same as you would get in the same amount (small can!) of  orange soda .

Gary Debunks Taubes II ~ It's the Frucose Stupid, revisited

Gary Taubes had a problem on his hands for his "Alternate Hypothesis" on the cause of obesity. While Why We Get Fat was in the writing stage, a couple of NIH biophysicists remained pesky thorns in Gary's side having challenged him on a lynch-pin of TWICHOO ( Taubes Wrong Insulin-Carbohydrate Hypothesis Of Obesity ).   Not to mention an equally pesky then-anonymous bunny-eared blogger who posted some pretty damning stuff on the subject , especially when she looked at his seminal reference on the subject from GCBC .  Downplay as he might, try to move on and have everyone forget, as he eventually relented and did, Taubes' original WWGF remains enshrined in the first journalistic effort on the topic: Good Calories Bad Calories . It wasn't all that long ago that people were shouted down in forums and comment sections of the low carb persuasion for daring to suggest that people could gain weight on low carb.  Remember the meme?  At least you won't gain weigh


direct image link The following comes from a slide presented by (?) at the Low Carb Down Under tour.  You can click to enlarge, but here's what the slide says under the title "What changed in the 1900s?" Sat fat down 83% Veggie oil/margarine up 535% Sugar up 1150% Now, no doubt there are changes in eating habits, and perhaps "down under" people changed their eating habits even more dramatically than we Americans have, or are purported to have.  I've blogged many times that something's "off" with any stats indicating that Americans actually consume a low fat diet, but I'm not going to address the fat claims above.  It's the sugar claim that just screams -- that can't be so?!

Berberine -- Supplement or Pharmaceutical? Does it matter?

I have commented a few times before on supplement usage in "The Community".  For example,  here . It always amazes me the litany of pronouncements on the macro/micro nutrient superiority of one's chosen diet that are side-by-side accompanied by an even longer litany of supplements.  It is pervasive, and dare I use the "a" word, addictive.  When I first found the LC web in 2009 I was rather astounded by the amount of supplements some were taking.  At some point, if one is supplementing their diet with a handful of pills, one needs to take a step back and recognize that it may well be those pills responsible for effects in spite of the diet. But another thing that's rather pervasive in the community is the use of supplements often accompanied by sanctimonious braggadocio regarding how the "diet" enabled a person to come off of all medications! Berberine has been making the rounds in LC/diabetic circles, and for good reason.  It works!   There&

Is SuperStarch a Safe Starch?

Remember "safe starches"?   This whole SuperStarch thing reminded me of that for some reason.  It was just a little over a year ago that Jimmy Moore sent out the email to all of the experts he considers experts to inquire over the safety of consuming starches.  It mattered not the quality of the response, he published them all up .  This post put the pry bar in whatever cracks there were in the community along carbohydrate lines and was the source of much of the antagonism Jimmy decries.  Some responses of interest: Jeff Volek : Claiming you need carbs to prevent scurvy is a red flag this guy is a nut job. Tell him to eat a red pepper. There is no evidence what so ever the human body has any dietary requirement for the nutrient class of carbohydrate (i.e., there is no defined condition associated with not consuming carbs). This comment just demonstrated that UCAN be an asshat in LLVLC-land so long as it's not against a low carber.   Next up, the other Bobsie Twin o

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing all of the inmates here at the Asylum a very Happy Thanksgiving!  It's been an up and down year for me, but all-in-all I have much to be thankful for.  As is tradition, the husband and I will be hosting dinner and  I'll make way too much food, but it's always good to have leftovers.   We shall have a "balanced meal" (LOL) of really good food.   First up will be crudite and stuffed baby-portie mushrooms (hot turkey sausage cuz sis and mom don't do pork, good old fashioned bread stuffing).  Might do deviled eggs too, but probably not this year.   Dinner begins with cream of wild mushroom soup.  I was going to get inventive and do something different this year, but the mushroom soup has apparently become legendary so it will be made!  I'll try and post a recipe for it.   Dinner proper will be turkey (of course).  My first T-giving I had no clue how to cook a bird and I roasted it upside-down like a dork.  Well folks, the breast comes out s

Fat Burning Beast II

I rarely devote posts to just a shout out anymore, but I'm going to make an exception here for Anthony Colpo who has weighed in on Tim Olson "Low Carb Athlete". Tim Olson: Another Low-Carb Athlete That Never Was? This dovetails nicely on my recent post on Olson:   Fat Burning Beast? We learn a few more details on Olson's habitual diet that includes lots of fruit, "cheating" on sushi, carbs like sweet potatoes before runs, etc. AC calls out Phinney's outright dishonesty in more forthright manner than did I.  But as more details came out, I think AC went easy on Phinney.  Riddle me this.  Is there an evil rotten vegan athlete out there who claims to compete on their diet yet is secretly downing pounds of bacon before races and picking up pats of butter at race aid stations?    Not to my knowledge. VLC stands for Very Low Credibility, apparently.   Don't give me all the good they do as an excuse for blatant dishonesty.

Amazing (and Not So Amazing) Low Carb Feats

Preface:  When I write posts such as this one, that I know some will take in ways in which it was not intended, I usually spend a bit of time contemplating hitting the publish button.  This post comes off rather more wet blankety (is that a term?) than even some others.   But as someone who has struggled with the after effects of yo-yoing, LC and not, I do think it is worthwhile to shine a light on the reality of what is being promoted out there.

If you're going to go nutty ketotic ...

... you might want to take thiamine. Optic neuropathy in ketogenic diet SUMMARY A symmetrical, bilateral optic neuropathy is reported in 2 patients being treated with ketogenic diets for seizure control. Laboratory tests suggested a thiamine deficiency, and both patients recovered normal visual function after several weeks of treatment with thiamine. The risk of optic nerve dysfunction occurring during the treatment with a ketogenic diet can be minimised if routine vitamin B supplements are given and periodic evaluation of optic nerve function undertaken.

Fun(ky) with Nature

Odd day today ... car troubles and such.  But it ended well this evening with another good load of hardwood from the neighborhood.   There are still some big trees lying around, but now with private contractors coming around to clear, most of it gets chipped up or hauled off unless you're really lucky. Now, yesterday I was getting ready to relax when I heard chirping at my window.  Happens  .... didn't think anything of it.   Then chirp chirp, kitty on couch looking inquisitively at the window.  Lots of fluttering  noises ....    We have old fashioned storm windows and the storm on that window was stuck with about 2-3" open on top.  Well a little wood pecker got in there.   So I got a step ladder to see what I could do.  Yeah right.  Almost killed myself as the legs sunk into the wet ground!  So then I got the real ladder out.  Still no love getting the window down and birdie was in distress.  Grabbed a hammer and started banging that window down.  I was prepared

Fat Burning Beast?

I gotta say, whenever I hear about these low carb athletes, blog posts and such flickering through the feed reader and such ... I tune out.   Why?  Because almost invariably when it comes to touting the superiority of the low carb diet, the tent gets very large indeed.  Anyone eating fewer carbs than the mythical "average" American consuming 500g/day is a low carber.  Which is ridiculous on its face, but makes for great hyperbole to blame the carbs for obesity and all manner of evil in the world.  In any case, when one looks a little deeper into the diets of these low carb athletes, they aren't really low carb at all.    I'm quite tired of this double standard applied by purveyors of low carb wisdom and light.  You see if a study shows even the slightest benefit to LC over the rival diet, it is touted as further evidence of LC greatness, even if after more careful consideration, it was hardly a low carb diet after all.  Yet that same diet fails to elicit the fam

Nutty Ketosis: Questions for Volek & Phinney ... and company

Jimmy Moore is clearly following the instructions of Volek & Phinney's latest book on The Art and Science of Low Carb Performance .  This follows on TA&SoLC Living.  Peter Attia followed their recommendations as well when he went nutty ketotic.  His is an even more bizarre experiment than Jimmy's, because as I understand from his JumpStartMD talks (search on YouTube) he had lost whatever little bit of extra weight already without dropping carbs severely.  The guy also works out (or did at the time) almost 3 hours a day and bragged that he increased his calories to 4500 and even more per day.  He bragged at one point in that talk about consuming upwards of 400g fat per day!!  How anyone doesn't think that is the very definition of dietary insanity is beyond me.  Still, Attia is fit and extremely active, and by all indications has not seen detrimental lipid profiles resulting from his adopted lifestyle.

Is there any such thing as "safe fat" for diabetics?

So some of the AHS12 videos are now online, HERE .  I'll have some comments on particular presentations, though by no means a majority.  Still, I had to, of course, watch the Safe Starches panel.   For the record, I think Paul & Chris did a good job, especially considering the circumstances, but this thing was an abomination in the making from the get-go.  I'll have more on that in another post. The whole "debate" goes back to Jimmy Moore's "data dump" post on safe starches.  You remember that one, right?   Is There Any Such Thing As ‘Safe Starches’ On A Low-Carb Diet?   As I said, I'll have more to say on this follow-up, but as one would expect Jimmy expresses his concerns over the safety of starches, and around the 5 minute mark essentially tries to take Paul to task for using the term "safe"!  Citing  Webster's Medical Dictionary   SAFE:  not causing harm or injury;  especially   :  having a low incidence of adverse rea

It’s high time we start treating actual DISEASE rather than risk factors anyway.

I’m currently on a personal quest to find the answers to these questions [why his lipid profile has gone from almost normal to nightmare territory after 7 years of LLVLC] and more by speaking directly with as many of my expert friends in the medical, nutrition and research fields over the next six months researching and writing my book all about this topic tentatively titled A Patient’s Guide to Understanding Your Cholesterol Test Results (releasing Fall 2013). People are so confused about what to believe about their cholesterol test results that this book is way overdue. Arming people with solid information will help them make a more informed decision about what to do about the current state of their health rather than blindly following some dubious drug therapy promoted by their doctor to treat risk factor numbers. It’s high time we start treating actual DISEASE rather than risk factors anyway. ~ Jimmy Moore  

Habitual Diets of Real Americans

This will be a revolving blog post, that shall get bumped up every time I add a study where habitual intake -- aka baseline -- has been determined/reported prior to a dietary intervention.  It's time to collect this data in one place, as in study after study, I have noted that Americans are not eating a low fat diet, nor a particularly high carb diet, despite the very modest percent reductions in NHANES surveys.   I reserve the right to add in studies in industrialized/Westernized populations as honorary dietary Americans.   Newest additions will be on top.

Anyone know what study this comes from?

I'm listening (oh it is torture folks!) to Dayspring & Taubes in the Specialty Health series on YouTube.  In the second video,  Fat One , around 10:40 mark for context, Taubes says that a research group from UConn (Volek I presume) did a study that showed that you'll have more saturated fat in your bloodstream if you eat a high carb diet than if you eat saturated fats.  Anyone know what study he's referring to, and if this is indeed true?  Thanks! Also, so I don't waste an entire post on just this, let me throw out another topic for discussion.  If sat fat is good for you and you need some of it (if you go back to around the 10 min mark you'll get this whole thing for context) ... why is high carb bad?  Your body makes "pure" sat fats out of the excesses it chooses to do so with.   Our bodies make sat fats, cholesterol and glucose ... why is only the glucose bad in the mind of the low carber, or to be fair, sat fats & cholesterol to the l

Post Sandy Weekend Wood Whoring

Well, the one good thing about storms like this, the clean-up crews don't spend time chipping up the wood when it's of more importance to just get the tree off the road and/or powerlines.  Hubs and I went out whoring for firewood.  Here's the two loads we got.  I'm a bit sore now, it's been a while since I hoisted logs over the side of that truck (the bed comes up to just below my shoulders) ... but as they say, it's a good kind of sore.   We also took the chainsaw to some stuff, but most of this will wait.  We'll cut it up and stack, but I think I've got enough wood from end of last year to split and burn this winter.  

Hacking Jimmy Moore's Latest Lipid Report

So Jimmy Moore has released his latest lipid panels , after losing 50-or-so pounds in 5 or so months of his nutritional ketosis experiment.  Before I comment on these, a huge revelation was made in the post: Interestingly, before I started on the Atkins diet in January 2004, my highest total cholesterol was only about 230. Of course, my doctor put me on both Lipitor and Crestor to lower that number and it did get down to 130 at some point (don’t know what the breakdown was of HDL and LDL nor do I know what my triglycerides or LDL-P were at the time either). Ummm ... Jimmy, do you even bother to look back at your own blog? Seems not, which is a darned pity for someone so darned and determined to figure all of this out, but who doesn't even look at his own data.   Before I started livin’ la vida low-carb , my HDL was a dismal 21 and my triglycerides hovered over 250. My LDL was about 250 which brought my total cholesterol to around 275. It wasn’t a pretty picture.