Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Faith Based Diet

You know why a lot of people hate Gary Taubes so much? Besides the fact that Good Calories, Bad Calories blew their idea of what was 'truth' out of the water, they're pissed because what he shows is that if you're overweight or obese, it isn't your fault. Basically, you don't eat too much, and you've been lied to. OMG, how can that be? Aren't fat people just gluttonous? Slothful? How can it be that they're not?

How can it be that you'd be such a prick to think otherwise? Or isn't that how society sets everyone up to be? It's a sort of blame-the-victim game. This can even be seen in texts on biochemistry. In Lippincott's Illustrated text, they say that β-cell death in Type 1 diabetes is caused probably by a virus. With Type 2, people don't become diabetic until their pancreas can't keep up. In other words, their β-cells have failed to produce enough insulin. What's Type 2 caused by? Obesity. Yes, you read that right. Obesity caused Insulin Resistance, which lead to Type 2. But, really? This is after they say that Type 2 (as well as weight) is heavily influenced by genetics. Is it not possible that Insulin Resistance is caused by a virus? Or that Insulin Resistance is the cause of obesity, not the other way around. It's a chicken-or-the-egg argument. I've also read that some people are insulin resistant, and not overweight. Normal weight people can become Type 2 diabetic. When it's a disease, it would be rude to say it's the person's fault. Therefore we can't call obesity a disease, or how else could it be socially acceptable to degrade fat people?

Also, who *wants* to be obese? Besides this crazy woman... Most people who struggle with their weight do so while trying to do something about it. Eventually they give up because they figure by starving themselves, they're doing more harm than good. And who likes to go around hungry all the time? I did lose weight eating a low calorie diet. But you can't keep doing that, so you go back to eating enough food to satiate you (as all skinny people do), and you wind up gaining what you lost back, and then some.

And then people like Atkins and Gary Taubes come along, and they tell you it isn't your fault, it's *what* you're eating, not how much. And all the little skinny ass people who have never been fat a day in their life and can eat however they like self-righteously tell you that people like Atkins are full of it, and if only everyone would eat the way they eat (which it seems is usually vegan or vegetarian, even though there are plenty of overweight vegans and vegetarians, because YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG!), they'd lose weight.

That whole "you're doing it wrong" mentality is about as brilliant as some of the trolls I've seen on message boards. Just because you're not insulin resistant and/or don't have a hormonal imbalance with insulin, doesn't mean that you're doing something "right". It just means that you're not metabolically messed up.

I also doubt that most people who criticize Atkins or Taubes have ever read what they wrote. And in the case of Good Calories, Bad Calories, *if* they read it, they probably didn't understand it. This is where they resort to ad hominem attacks, because they have nothing else. I've read GCBC twice, and it's not an easy read. And I read plenty of intense books all the time. What artist do you know who reads Lippincott's biochemistry for fun? If you know of another artist who does, I'd love to meet them LOL!

I also understand that there is a group of people who don't have any critical thinking skills, who will follow whatever their doctors or their gurus tells them. They never look into anything for themselves. These are the same people who go on statins because they're scared of their cholesterol (hello! cholesterol is required for cell wall stability). They're the same people who parrot crap on message boards as if it's incontrovertible truth. I tell you, some diet advocates that I've seen put Catholics to shame when it comes to faith. Evangelicals, if you want to convert someone, target the diet crowd. I'm betting a near 100% success rate.

Basically, it's a bunch of codswallop. If some diet works for you, great, do it. If you can drink a two liter bottle of Coca-cola every day and not gain an ounce, that's fantastic {/snark}. I'd prefer to cook my liver on something tastier than soda though, just so you know (pain au chocolat comes to mind). If a diet doesn't work, then don't do it. But don't stand there and tell me that it won't work for me, or that it will work for me. How in the hell do you know what works for me? Are you me? And also, why do you care what I put in my mouth? If you care so much about what I, a complete stranger to you, eats, I suggest you do something important: Get a life.

If low carb diet isn't working for you, before you give up on it, a suggestion is to add more fat and less protein. A lot of low-carbers fall into the "fat is bad" mentality and don't eat enough fat. Depending upon how screwed up your hormones and cells are, too much protein may be triggering too much insulin, which if you're trying to lose weight, may cause you to plateau.

1 comment:

  1. "When it's a disease, it would be rude to say it's the person's fault. Therefore we can't call obesity a disease, or how else could it be socially acceptable to degrade fat people?"

    It may be rude, but people do it all the time. A friend of mine died of cancer. He was thin but a sugar junkie. I don't know what caused his cancer but I do know his parents both had it so no doubt there were a number of factors. I would never blame him for his cancer, but people do blame other people for disease all the time. Even he said to me, "It isn't my fault I have cancer." He was coming from the mentality that people are to blame for disease. This means if you are fat and get heart disease, cancer or any other disease, it's your fault because you are a fat slob and were asking for it. But if you are thin and get a disease, well that's just bad luck.