medic8m

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I recently had a discussion with a self proclaimed "nutritionist" who was touting a low-carb diet. She was telling me the evils of carbohydrate. How your blood sugar "spikes" and "tells your body to store as fat". She also stated that high carb diets "cause diabetes".

I am almost 100% sure that there has never been a direct link between eating sugar and developing diabetes. Indirectly, through weight gain, yes. Furthermore, in a healthy person with a normally functioning pancreas and liver there should not be a blood glucose "spike". Am I way off? It just sounds like someone trying to sell a book or diet to me.
 

jalabert

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Are you sure you want to start this thread? It's gonna be a bit of a pandora's box.

Just wondering.

By self proclaimed nutritionist, do you mean that they have no academic qualifications or certifications? Because, I have been having this debate/discussion for about a decade and have never met one single certified nutritionist or RD that would even consider the low carb approach as being remotely of value. The dogma in nutritional academia is pretty strong. That being said,...

depending on the GI/II of the food you are eating, yes, there are going to be blood glucose spikes and concurrent insulin spikes. Blood sugar spikes do tell your body to store fat in the respect that high blood sugar levels stimulate lipogenesis and inhibit lipolysis. So, depending on the caloric intake the balance is pushed more toward lipogenesis than lipolysis. If insulin levels are persistently high, lipolysis will be inhibited promoting fat gain.

Granted, if the caloric intake is around maintenance or below, there will be negligible fat gain. But, if people are supersizing everything, the combo of caloric surplus and high insulin levels will promote fat gain. For the longest time nutritionists and other health and science professionals argued that fat gain/loss was simply a matter of calories in/calories out, but two recent studies show this is not the case. Additionally, low carb diets have been shown to lower blood glucose levels, improve insulin sensitivity, increase lipolysis and promote fat oxidation.

You're right though, the direct link between hi carb diets and diabetes (type II) is difficult to make due to the fact that obesity is often a common co-factor. The relationship between hi GI carb intake, blood glucose response, insulin response in conjunction with data on short term adaptations to lower carb diets, sure argues for a correlational, if not causative, relationship between hi carb (hi GI) and type II diabetes.

I'm not pimping the Atkins approach or trying to say the low carb diet is all that, but I am saying the dogma of the traditional nutritionists needs to be challened. There is enough data out there now for a healthy debate.

Gotta go have a kit kat and coke..
 

Goofyone

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Originally posted by jalabert
For the longest time nutritionists and other health and science professionals argued that fat gain/loss was simply a matter of calories in/calories out, but two recent studies show this is not the case.
Hey jalabert, I am pretty interested in this topic. Do you happen to know the titles of these studies and what journals they were in?

Thanks
 
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Doc Ivy

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anyone aware of the validity of off label prescribing of Glucophage for weight loss, and polycystic ovarian syndrome? Kind of an interesting new trend.

~doc
 

Goofyone

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Originally posted by Doc Ivy
anyone aware of the validity of off label prescribing of Glucophage for weight loss, and polycystic ovarian syndrome? Kind of an interesting new trend.

~doc

Wow I hadn't heard of using Met for weight loss, but my professors did mention that ovulation was a side effect, and that's it's becoming common to prescribe it for PCOS.

Maybe my fat @$$ should try some.
 

jalabert

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Originally posted by Goofyone
Hey jalabert, I am pretty interested in this topic. Do you happen to know the titles of these studies and what journals they were in?

Goofy,

Here are a few references to get you started. There are a ton more. A couple of things to note i) most of these studies are not what most would consider the Atkins approach (low to no carbs, hi fat), but they are higher than recommended fat or protein diets ii) this is biased list as it only includes the positive studies, not both sides. For the most part though, until only recently, you only heard one side of the story (Hi carb, low fat), from nutrition and health professionals. As I said before, not pimping anything, but there is certainly enough data for healthy debate, and challenge to traditional dogma.

A randomized trial of a low-carbohydrate diet for obesity. Foster GD, Wyatt HR, Hill JO, McGuckin BG, Brill C, Mohammed BS, Szapary PO, Rader DJ, Edman JS, Klein S. N Engl J Med. 2003 May 22;348(21):2082-90.

Low-carbohydrate-high-protein diets; Is there a place for them in clinical cardiology? Kappagoda CT, Hyson DA, Amsterdam EA. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2004 Mar 3;43(5):725-30.

Endurance capacity and high-intensity exercise performance responses to a high fat diet. Fleming J, Sharman MJ, Avery NG, Love DM, Gomez AL, Scheett TP, Kraemer WJ, Volek JS. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2003 Dec;13(4):466-78.

Effect of a high-protein, energy-restricted diet on body composition, glycemic control, and lipid concentrations in overweight and obese hyperinsulinemic men and women. Farnsworth E, Luscombe ND, Noakes M, Wittert G, Argyiou E, Clifton PM. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Jul;78(1):31-9.

Exchanging carbohydrates for monounsaturated fats in energy-restricted diets: effects on metabolic profile and other cardiovascular risk factors.
Colette C, Percheron C, Pares-Herbute N, Michel F, Pham TC, Brillant L, Descomps B, Monnier L. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2003 Jun;27(6):648-56

Comparison of a high-carbohydrate and a high-monounsaturated fat, olive oil-rich diet on the susceptibility of LDL to oxidative modification in subjects with Type 2 diabetes mellitus. Rodriguez-Villar C, Perez-Heras A, Mercade I, Casals E, Ros E. Diabet Med. 2004 Feb;21(2):142-9

High protein intake sustains weight maintenance after body weight loss in humans. Westerterp-Plantenga MS, Lejeune MP, Nijs I, van Ooijen M, Kovacs EM. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2004 Jan;28(1):57-64.
 

jalabert

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Not sure if you're just being sarcastic, but.... no, if my original point was unclear, some have challenged the notion that the amount of weight lost or gained, is simply a matter of # of calories in versus # calories out. That a calorie is simply a calorie, and that if someone eats 2000 kcal a day from CHO and another person eats 2000 kcal a day from protein and fat, and they both expend 3000 kcal/day, they will lose the same amount of weight. These references, as well as the NEJM study and other references cited in my previous post dispute that.

Baba NH, Sawaya S, Torbay N, Habbal Z, Azar S, and Hashim SA. High protein vs high carbohydrate hypoenergetic diet for the treatment of obese hyperinsulinemic subjects. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 23: 1202-1206, 1999.

Brehm BJ, Seeley RJ, Daniels SR, and D'Alessio DA. A randomized trial comparing a very low carbohydrate diet and a calorie-restricted low fat diet on body weight and cardiovascular risk factors in healthy women. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 88: 1617-1623, 2003.

Sondike SB, Copperman N, and Jacobson MS. Effects of a low-carbohydrate diet on weight loss and cardiovascular risk factor in overweight adolescents. J Pediatr 142: 253-258, 2003.


Certainly, if you persistently ingest more calories than you expend, you will likely gain fat over the long term, or even over the short term if you eat the way I did this past weekend.
 

SticknRudder

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Some people have hit the nail exactly on the head: it doesn't matter what you eat, low carb or not, if it's excess you'll gain weight. The biggest thing about the low-carb, high-protein diet is the use of the protein and it's effect of satiety. Plainly, if you eat more protein, you feel more full, faster than if you ate carbs.

I have lost about 25 lbs. doing South Beach and feel that, while the lower carb (really lower simple sugars, not so much carbs in general, like spinach, brocolli, etc.) helps keep my blood-insulin levels down to curb lypogenesis, I've really found that eating more protein causes me to eat less. In addition the types of carbs you do eat are all high in fiber which also limits the insulin response.

If you can keep from over eating by consuming standard high-carb fare, do it. I just don't find the trade off worthwhile. The more carbs I eat, the more I crave sweets, the more calories I intake, the fatter I get. Eating in the South Beach mode has me eating lots of fresh veggies and low-fat protein (chicken, tofu, nuts, white fish, pork, and the occasional steak). I really don't feel bad about having a beer or eating a piece of candy once in awhile. After doing this diet for a month or so, it becomes habit and no longer requires much attention.

Excersizing really makes the change in diet exponential to your weight. I found early on that eating badly makes my excersizing really difficult. Running 4 miles on a slice of pizza and a beer will be much harder than on a piece of grilled chicken with a small baked sweet potato.

Anyway, yada yada, I'm rambling now.

Eat less, lose weight. That's what all these diets boil down to.
 

medic8m

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I think you are right.. In addition, I believe it is easier to loose weigh dieting than exercising (if you had to pick). If one walks three miles they probably burn around the same calories as a can of soda. So which is easier: to not drink the soda, or walk three miles? Combining the two is ideal, with the added cardiovascular benefit.
 

pikachu

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another thing is that there are different kinds of carbs. brown rice does very different things to your blood sugar/insulin release than wonder bread. Whole grains/whole fruits and vegetables all have fiber and they're metabolized much slower than refined sugars and white flour. So even though they contain carbohydrates they do not cause wild swings in your blood sugar as a Coke or something would.
 

jalabert

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Originally posted by medic8m
I think you are right.. In addition, I believe it is easier to loose weigh dieting than exercising (if you had to pick). If one walks three miles they probably burn around the same calories as a can of soda. So which is easier: to not drink the soda, or walk three miles? Combining the two is ideal, with the added cardiovascular benefit.

Or in the time it took to walk 3 miles, you could run 9 miles and burn 900-1000 kcal, plus what would be burned with increased metabolism throughout the rest of the day. You would lose 1 pound of fat in about 3 days.

Cutting out a can of coke would be fine, but it would take 30 days to lose 1 pound of fat, assuming you don't cheat. That's why diet only very seldom works. Most people don't have the discipline.
 

medic8m

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Originally posted by jalabert
Or in the time it took to walk 3 miles, you could run 9 miles and burn 900-1000 kcal, plus what would be burned with increased metabolism throughout the rest of the day. You would lose 1 pound of fat in about 3 days.

Cutting out a can of coke would be fine, but it would take 30 days to lose 1 pound of fat, assuming you don't cheat. That's why diet only very seldom works. Most people don't have the discipline.

You are right, discipline is the primary issue... It seems becoming and staying fit is a lifestyle modification (or gastric modification through surgery :) )
 

jalabert

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The original point of your post, I believe, related to the value of a low carb diet though. In this regard, discipline may not be relevant. For decades the nutritional establishment has espoused the benefits of a high CHO, low fat diet for optimum health. Further, the establishment (the man if you will) argued, until blue in the face, that fat is essentially evil and should be almost eliminated from the diet. When challenged, they would state that there is no evidence in the literature to support the benefits of lower CHO diets. Evidence has been accumulating for almost a decade, and it appears as though there may be some benefit to higher fat diets. Regardless of whether you want to lose weight/fat or not, higher fat diets particularly those higher in MUFAs and PUFAs may be of similar, if not greater, benefit compared to high CHO diets.

This concludes my post pad.
 

jakstat33

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Originally posted by jalabert
Or in the time it took to walk 3 miles, you could run 9 miles and burn 900-1000 kcal, plus what would be burned with increased metabolism throughout the rest of the day. You would lose 1 pound of fat in about 3 days.

Cutting out a can of coke would be fine, but it would take 30 days to lose 1 pound of fat, assuming you don't cheat. That's why diet only very seldom works. Most people don't have the discipline.

i believe there are other dynamics at play besides discipline that make it hard for today's society to eat healthy & exercise... less time, more stress = fatter population... and who's got the money to eat healthy these days anyhow?
 

jalabert

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Originally posted by jakstat33
i believe there are other dynamics at play besides discipline that make it hard for today's society to eat healthy & exercise... less time, more stress = fatter population... and who's got the money to eat healthy these days anyhow?

An attending cardiologist.
 
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