I haven’t meant to become an evangelist. Or an activist. I really haven’t. But when I went to see my doctor about three months ago, she noticed I’d lost weight. “Good girl!” she said. “What are you doing?”
I told her (see previous post) I’d read this book and was following the recommendations in it. I told her it was a low-carb diet. “I eat a lot of meat and green, leafy vegetables,” I said. I figured she knew the science of how this works.
“Lean meat,” she said.
Her emphasis was an indication that she doesn’t know the science; she’s still buying in to the medical establishment’s emphasis on cutting fat and calories. My health insurance company sends me little newsletters full of advice to increase exercise and cut calories (the calories-in/calories-out method); this also is bad science. In Why We Get Fat, Taubes notes,
The physicians of Bruch’s era [the 1940s and ’50s] weren’t thoughtless and the doctors of today are not, either. They merely have a flawed belief system—a paradigm—that stipulates that the reason we get fat is clear and incontrovertible, as is the cure. We get fat, our physicians tell us, because we eat too much and/or move too little, and so the cure is to do the opposite. … This is what Bruch described in 1957 as the ‘prevalent American attitude that the problem [of obesity] is simply one of eating more than the body needs,’ and now it’s the prevalent attitude worldwide. … Over the years, this calories-in/calories-out paradigm of excess fat has proved to be remarkably resistant to any evidence to the contrary. Imagine a murder trial in which one credible witness after another takes the stand and testifies that the suspect was elsewhere at the time of the killing and so had an airtight alibi, and yet the jurors keep insisting that the defendant is guilty, because that’s what they believed when the trial began.
“Well,” I said, “we actually need the good fats—saturated fats—to facilitate the chemistry that creates the weight loss.” But even as I spoke I could see her losing interest. I’ve since learned that they don’t teach nutrition in med school.
Still, I’m not looking for my doctor’s approval. I continue to eat the way I do because I feel so good. From May to December, I was unmoved by carbohydrates because I felt great. Then the Christmas season arrived, I went on vacation, and, well, there were cookies. 🙂 Mostly I kept to my eating habits; I didn’t go looking for trouble. But I definitely had some cookies.
Some bodies are genetically inclined to remain lean—it’s not all the fault of carbs—but the fact is mine is a body that is genetically inclined to plumpness. I’ve been to the family reunions, kids, and I’ve seen. So you can imagine my delight when I got home and discovered I hadn’t gained weight. This convinces me further that I’m on the right path. And I got right back on it.
I’m done with this topic, now, on my little travel blog. I’m excited that I’ve lost a little weight and I feel good. I’ve got two big trips coming up this year, and I’ll go into them with some of the best health I’ve enjoyed in a long time. But I wanted to leave you with a link to an article in case your medical professionals also got through med school without any nutrition science:
If you find it intriguing, visit the author’s website. I’m a big believer in scientific evidence in plain language, and you can find it there.
Sooooo … have you got any trips planned? Stay tuned, because I’ve got some great ideas about that.