Part 6: Safety First — Excess

(Back to Parts One, Two, Three, Four, or Five) Is a low-carb diet safe? A diet that is lower in carbohydrates is by necessity higher in protein and fat. And everybody knows that’s supposed to be trouble, right? After all, researchers have been focusing on dietary fat and cholesterol for a long, long time as […]

Part 5: Prescription

(Back to Parts One, Two, Three, or Four) Well, it’s pretty obvious what this has been leading up to, isn’t it? The only thing that can cause fat loss is a low insulin level, and to do that, you have to restrict carbohydrates. You can either do that by restricting total calories, or by restricting […]

Part 4: Insulin, Hunger and Satiety

(Back to Parts One, Two, or Three) Suppose you have some lab rats. If offered rat chow, they’ll eat until they’re satisfied, and then stop. But what, exactly, triggers that satisfied feeling? What makes a rat happy? What makes a rat hungry? Proponents of high-fiber diets claim that adding fiber to meals helps promote a […]

Gary Taubes Interview on Quirks and Quarks

Alert Reader and Industry Figure Stephen Newell sends a note about a nice interview with Gary Taubes, author of Good Calories, Bad Calories (Knopf, 2007), on the CBC’s Quirks and Quarks radio program. The show’s web page about the the interview is here, and has some helpful links, and the interview itself is available as […]

Part 3: Insulin and Diabetes

(Back to Parts One or Two) Well, we could keep dancing around the subject, but we’re going to have to talk about insulin sooner or later. But we’ll need a good segue. We can’t just rush into it cold. Hmm. So…ah! “Speaking of metabolic disorders…”, there’s the metabolic disorder, Syndome X, the Metabolic Syndrome. What […]

Obesity as a Metabolic Disorder, Part 2

(Back to Part One) Well, this business of genetically-obese mice, that’s not so convincing, is it? I mean, they’re mice, not humans, and specially-fat mice, not normal humans, and they get fat on most any diet, not just on certain diets. Doesn’t seem too compelling. No, that was irony, just now. I’ve got all kinds […]

Obesity as a Metabolic Disorder, Part 1

Back when I posted the rule-of-thumb about the relationship between a 10-calorie-a-day change and overweight (+10 calories a day from eating or sloth equals +1 pound a year, -10 calories a day from diet or exercise equals -1 pound a year), my old friend Jeff Lorenzini e-mailed me to say that this was complete nonsense. […]