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A Problem for Low-Carb Theories?
Old 11-09-2010, 08:44 AM   #1
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A Problem for Low-Carb Theories?

Twinkie diet helps nutrition professor lose 27 pounds - CNN.com
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Old 11-09-2010, 09:11 AM   #2
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Hmmmm....Thought provoking

I'll ponder this while I'm driving to the nearest convenience store
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Old 11-09-2010, 09:20 AM   #3
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I read this story and thought about it. I just find it hard to believe that he ever felt that he had had enough, after eating all that poofy sugary stuff. Also, has he never retained water at all?

On the other hand, I wondered if I could try a similar experiment eating our sublime New Orleans Creole/Italian food. It's a nice thought in theory.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:04 AM   #4
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Fascinating story. I like that he doesn't try to draw conclusions, justs says "this is what I found".

A little irony here - the author's name is Haub, eerily similar to Taubes? And their first names have the same number of letters, hmmmmm.

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On the other hand, I wondered if I could try a similar experiment eating our sublime New Orleans Creole/Italian food. It's a nice thought in theory.
Well, it just might work, but (and that's a BIG BUT, hah, hah ,hah) one would have to limit the calories they take in. And that is not easy with such fanatastic food.

PS - Not sure if anyone beat me to the punch, but CONGRATS!!!!! on the one year anniversary of FIRE!!! Gotta find those dancing guys:



It's an anniversary of sorts for me, so it's easy for me to remember. Enjoy the day, just like the past 365!

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Old 11-09-2010, 10:19 AM   #5
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"His premise: That in weight loss, pure calorie counting is what matters most -- not the nutritional value of the food."

That is the key point. The above isn't promoted since you can not make money from it.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:20 AM   #6
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Thank you, ERD50!! I am having a wonderful "retire-a-versary" today. Frank and I are going out for lunch to celebrate, and to eat some of that great New Orleans Italian/Creole food later on. I'm sure portion control will go out the window.

It has been a terrific year.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:25 AM   #7
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On the other hand, I wondered if I could try a similar experiment eating our sublime New Orleans Creole/Italian food. It's a nice thought in theory.
Yes! the W2R Beignet Diet. Love it.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:30 AM   #8
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Not only did he lose 27 lbs. in only 10 weeks to reach a normal weight, his cholesterol improved:

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His body mass index went from 28.8, considered overweight, to 24.9, which is normal. He now weighs 174 pounds.
But you might expect other indicators of health would have suffered. Not so.
Haub's "bad" cholesterol, or LDL, dropped 20 percent and his "good" cholesterol, or HDL, increased by 20 percent. He reduced the level of triglycerides, which are a form of fat, by 39 percent.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:30 AM   #9
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Yes! the W2R Beignet Diet. Love it.
I was thinking more like this type of food.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:39 AM   #10
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In a long ago post I asserted the same. Calories in v calories out.

Simple example: In Auschwitz the captives were on a severe caloric restrictive starvation diet, the results were not photogenic. There were no overweight captives, there or at Birkenau.

Seems there was some other thread on types of calories being good v bad.
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Old 11-09-2010, 10:46 AM   #11
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In a long ago post I asserted the same. Calories in v calories out.
...

Seems there was some other thread on types of calories being good v bad.
Yes, but there are measurable differences in foods (glycemic index). I don't know if those are meaningful or not, but it might make a difference in how easy it is too keep to a calorie restricted diet.

Remember, this guy was motivated to stay on the diet for (quasi?-) scientific purposes. Perhaps some people would find certain diets easier to maintain, and it might be different for different individuals. But I agree, cutting back will do it (maybe rare exceptions for specific medical conditions)- but for most of us (fortunately) we have to deal with our willpower, and I'm feeling like some leftover Halloween candy right now.

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Old 11-09-2010, 11:02 AM   #12
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I was thinking more like this type of food.
Oh, I thought we were talking about losing weight. Beignets -- major weight loss and nausea after about 2 of them. Chef Joe -- lifelong, intractable weight gain from gorging every night. But what a way to go .
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Old 11-09-2010, 11:02 AM   #13
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It sounds like the calorie reduction is the reason for the weight loss. Perhaps that accounts for the blood profile changes also. I think the boredom alone would be difficult after a few days as I would want fruit and at least some chicken or fish. I wonder if he will ever want to have another Twinkie?
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Old 11-09-2010, 11:03 AM   #14
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Yes I do appreciate the short term research project. I would not advocate a twinkies diet or a three musketeers one either. True Glycemic index is and can be a problem for many.

Much of DW's side of the family is grossly obese. They have tons of will power, what they seem to lack is the "won't" power.

Having been out to dinner with them is to me an amazing food orgy. They eat everything in sight then order more. DW and I ( where is the grammar police?) are both light eaters, we just sit back sipping wine and watch the mountains of food disappear.

Though at the rate they are passing away the show will come to a close fairly soon.
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Old 11-09-2010, 11:11 AM   #15
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Oh, I thought we were talking about losing weight. Beignets -- major weight loss and nausea after about 2 of them. Chef Joe -- lifelong, intractable weight gain from gorging every night. But what a way to go .
That's for sure! Once a year for me is all I can handle. It would be crime to ask Joe for just a clear soup or a grilled chicken salad with dressing on the side.
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:03 PM   #16
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I have journaled what I eat for several years. I track calories, calories net of exercise, grams of protein, grams of fat, grams of carbs and sodium. I have tried low carb, low fat and lots of exercise and no exercise. This article supports exactly what I have observed, that is total calories eaten is the most important factor by a large margin.

However, I have also found it easier to stick to 1,800-2,000 calories per day when eating a higher protein diet with moderate carbs. I feel full and satisfied much longer when eating a good amount of protein and fat instead of tons of carbs.

I also have found that exercise is not the benefit on weight loss that I thought it was. For instance, I will lose more weight by eating 1,800 calories per day with no exercise than if I eat 2,400 calories per day and burn 600 per day on the treadmill.

Not suggesting people don't exercise because it provides other health benefits. But just don't think you can eat that extra 400 calorie slice of pizze and burn it off by working out for 400 cals.
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:31 PM   #17
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I don't know if everyone caught the follow-up story:

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Reuters, Nov 9 2010
American teacher Mark Haub, who recently attained notoriety for losing 27 pounds on an unconventional diet consisting primarily of snack food and devoid of most fiber, has had his first bowel movement since starting the unconventional eating regimen two months ago.

"I had been feeling a little sluggish and surprisingly full for the last several weeks" remarked Haub, "and then it occurred to me that I hadn't gone number two in a long time. I consulted my journal and, sure enough, it had been about two months."

Haub says his total weight loss on the diet now stands at 35 pounds after this morning's "event," and believes adherents to his eating plan will not only lose weight but gain about 10 minutes to use as they please every day rather than sitting in the loo. "Everyone is busy these days, so this will be an important "plus factor" for a lot of people."
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:42 PM   #18
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I also have found that exercise is not the benefit on weight loss that I thought it was. For instance, I will lose more weight by eating 1,800 calories per day with no exercise than if I eat 2,400 calories per day and burn 600 per day on the treadmill.
There's a difference between eliminating fat and building muscle, and the difference is likely to make your weight go up.

Whenever I start an aggressive exercise program, like ramping up for a taekwondo black-belt test or extended periods of surfing, I'll lose five pounds in the first month or two. After that it all comes back and I might even gain a few more pounds.

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I don't know if everyone caught the follow-up story:
I'm glad someone dug into the material to get to the bottom of this. Now that's investigative journalism!

Speaking as a submariner sewage expert, the phrasing is a little awkward. Are they merely noting that his total weight loss over the last two months is now 35 pounds, or are they implying that he had an "eight-pound event"?

I'm sure he'll get a free colonoscopy out of this data collection.
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Old 11-09-2010, 01:48 PM   #19
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Are you sure this wasn't published by The Onion?
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Old 11-09-2010, 02:51 PM   #20
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The calories in calories out idea doesn't help in understanding weight loss. Before you object, here's a hypothetical example, that should make you realize, that while true, the law of thermodynamics is actually irrelevant to weight loss, and that all calories are not equivalent.

Let's say I gave you a pill to eat every morning. This pill contained only four calories. However, this pill affects your hormonal balance, and it makes you ravenously hungry all the time, and also quite lethargic. Perhaps it's related to your thyroid, but that doesn't matter for this example. What matters is that it makes you hungry and sedentary.

As a result, you are probably going to gain weight. The pill is only a few calories, but you have gained weight because it has made you to eat a lot more food and move around less.

Has the "calories in/calories out" thermodynamic law been violated? No, because, as a result of your extra eating, you have taken in a lot more calories, and expended fewer. But because of the nature of these calories that you've eaten, namely those four calories in the pill that affects your metabolism, you have gained weight. If you were to stop taking that four-calorie pill, you'd lose weight.

In other words, calories in/calories out is true, but not helpful in understanding weight gain or loss. Whether or not such a pill exists, the example should show you why Calories In/Calories Out is too simplistic for explaining weight loss. If you had eaten 4 calories of pizza each morning, the results would not have been the same.

In a similar way, eating lots of carbohydrates may force your body to store energy in fat cells, which in turn makes you more likely to eat more and expend less.

How I interpret the twinkie diet is that the guy had the willpower and motivation to keep calories low, and therefore lost weight. I'll bet that he could not stay on that diet for years.
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