We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Monday, May 12. 2014
I view part of my duty as to debunk folk myths about health and medicine. Readers know that one of my bugaboos concerns the human diet and the First World preoccupation with what we eat as if it mattered all that much. Food faddism has always been part of American life since we became a wealthy country and had food choices.
Eating fats does not make you fat. Carbs make you fat. That is no longer in dispute.
Do saturated fats "cause" heart disease? There is no evidence for it. Bacon and eggs is the Great American Breakfast, with or without grits, or biscuits and gravy. In the WSJ, The Questionable Link Between Saturated Fat and Heart Disease -Are butter, cheese and steak really bad for you? The dubious science behind the anti-fat crusade.
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
I wish hot dogs were a naturally occurring food source and hot dog buns were not a carb. Yay for bacon and eggs!
Oh yea… and I wish that mustard and dill relish were considered fruit.
The really great thing about fatty foods is that they automatically activate whatever it is that tells your brain that its had enough.
Carbs OTOH cry out for more more more. Endless.
This reminds me of Garrison Keillor's Ballad of Peanut Butter, with the following punch line:
Then he decided, upon the basisThe irony being that peanut butter can help reduce cholesterol. So he didn't have to go to prison, after all. [See the video]
Of a book he read one fall,
That his problems had resulted
From excessive cholesterol.
He ate a great big bowl of garden salad greens,
He ate that whole wheat roll, and that pile of beans,
He gave up sandwiches of toasted white bread,
With peanut butter, creamy style.
That night his dog died,
He smashed his pick-up,
His sweetheart left him,
He lost his hair,
His house caught fire,
He went to prison,
His poor old mother
Came to him there.
Sat fat does not make you fat - after 50 Yrs of being told fat is bad:
in other words,
when the "experts" tell you something - you can reasonably assume that the opposite is true, (or at least, that their statement is false) because "experts" are full of s@#$
Pass the bacon, please.
Carbs do NOT make you fat. Eating calories in excess of the amount of calories needed to maintain the body causes someone to become fat.
Carbs do not make you fat. If this simple theory were true then 100% of Americans and Europeans would be fat. But with all the food available to us only 20% or so of Americans are obese and another 20% fat based on an arbitrary measure. Oddly most obese people are women and people of color. Hmmmm. Could it be that weight is genetic and not because of diet?
It's a combination of genetics and stuffing your face too much that makes you fat.
"Most obese people are women"? I am not sure where you got this from. Look it up. More MEN are considered 'overweight or obese' than women. An EQUAL number of men and women are considered 'obese.' The only stat that women beat men on is 'extreme obesity.' And that is a small, small percentage of the overweight:
(scroll down the page for the chart with weight by sex)
>>>"are considered 'obese.' "
last time my daughter was at the doctor, he commented on her weight - that according to the chart and her height, she's overweight.
My daughter spends 50+ hours a week on horseback.
After the doctor said that, she lifted up her shirt and showed him her six pack abs.
he said, "i'll shut up, now."
charts and guidelines don't take body types into consideration.
Some people are fat in hips/thighs. Some are fat in the middle area (apple shaped). Everyone carries their weight differently.
because people are unique.
Don't be so obtuse. Of course just any carbs don't make you fat but excessive carbs, particularly high glycemic, triggers hormonal responses that fat does not that contributes to obesity. Too much fat will also make you fat, too much calories will make you fat.
In addition to the hormonal responses high glycemic carbs also have high calory density and do not provide the satiation trigger that fat and fiber do which contribute to over consumption of calories, of the worst kind of calories.
Combine this with a sedentary life style and easy access to cheap, high glycemic carbs and you have a recipe for obesity.
All opinions aside, the fact that everyone is fat only happened after the anti-fat religion got under way is all we really need to know.
Fixing the problem is so much harder in practice, than life would have been if this thing hadn't gotten started in the first place.
The obesity rate (BMI > 30) for black women is 50%, for black men it is 37%. For hispanic women it is 45% for hispanic men it is 36%. For white women it is 33% and for white men it is 32%.
This is the data I was citing. I can't account for the difference between what you found and what I found except to say this kind of data tends to be abused and misused by everyone with an axe to grind.
I was not being obtuse I was stating what should be obvious to anyone with two eyes. Clearly some people are genetically obese and it doesn't matter what they eat they will still be obese. While others are not genetically obese and they can eat all the carbs or fats or high glycemic carbs they want and will not become obese. Obesity is genetic just as skinnyness is genetic. But for those people who are genetically likely to become obese then perhaps certain carbs are worse for them and thus for these people they will believe exactly what you believe. But it does not agree with reality for the majority of people who can eat high glycemic carbs or fats or lots of calories and never become obese. We tend to be blinded by our own reality but in fact most people in America are not obese and most people eat the same foods and eat till they are full.
It is important to point out that prior to 1998 the health community used a different measure to decide obesity or overweight and that when the new measure (BMI) was instituted in 1998 the obesity doubled overnight. That is many people who were not obese were arbitrarily declared to be obese because of BMI. The ONLY reason we use BMI is because it is an easy system. Everyone who is familiar with it knows and acknowledges that it is grossly inaccurate. That is the cutoffs (i.e. BMI > 30 equals obese) are arbitrary (why not BMI > 32.7 or 31.9?). And they reflect the weight of Europeans in the early 1800's a time that was economically poor and most people were undernourished. That means that when the inventor determined the "norms" he was dealing with a population where about 75% of the people were starving. If you doubt this find someone in public life with a BMI of 20.1 (considered "normal) and look at them. They will look like they are on death's doorstep. Then look at someone like Mariah Carey, who most men would consider beautiful and sexy, but she is in fact obese based on the BMI.
The bottom line is the BMI as a measurement of health was/is a mistake and should be abandoned. It is arbitrary, discriminates against shorter people or healthier people and is confusing in it's arbitrariness.
Its very true about religion. At the same time the concept of shame was thrown out as well.
Of interest is the fact that the fashion industry has only now started taking the concept of plus sizing seriously.
Actually, my veterinarian is known to refer to the carbohydrate-rich diet promoted by various "health" authorities as the "feed-lot diet". As in, you want to fatten up the cattle, you feed them lots of grain.
In my opinion, we should go back to the world before animal fat was demonized and 'edible oils' made their debut. Lot fewer fatties then.
I am in favor of "fat" in foods. I love bacon, use butter in cooking and for fresh biscuits from the oven. I use lard where called for in baking. But I feel the same way about carbs, that is I eat carbs at every meal and the meal doesn't seem balanced without potatoes or rice or pasta, etc. I use sugar and in fact I like sugar. I eat junk food and enjoy a big bag of salty chips. I have spent a lot of time and effort researching the studies and the facts about food. I have read a lot of the books and tried some of the fads. The bottom line seems to be this: If you do not have a dietary related disease, such as diabetes, or allergy there is no such thing as a "bad food". It appears to be equally true that there is no such thing as a "wonder food" or a food class that will make you well or make you ill. There is no legitimate study that has proved conclusively that a food has caused major health problems for all humans or has prevented major health problems. An Apple a day doesn't keep the doctor away and seven servings of fruits and vegetables a day won't prevent cancer or heart disease. If there was some diet that was provably healthier then simply eating a variety of foods without biased fads then I would be in favor of it But there isn't. Saturated fats, carbs and even trans-fats will not kill you and fad diets will not make you live longer. What the human body needs is certain amounts (MDR) of a list of nutrients and the best way to get this is by eating a variety of foods and not restricting your diet based on fads and misinformation. Almost everything else said about food is pure misinformation.
BMI is junk science. Had plenty of people in the military be told their BMI was too high, and they were weightlifters and incredibly fit. I wouldn't use BMI as a determining factor in calling someone 'overweight.'
According to the data I provided the 'obese' are equal between men and women. With women edging out men for the 'super obese' category out of that 36%.
Using stats from different ethnicities does not give the overall picture of overweight men vs. overweight women.