Eating the Right Foods and Weight Loss

In a recent NY Times article, Rethinking Weight Loss and the Reasons We’re ‘Always Hungry’, the idea that too many calories causes obesity is challenged:

“…overeating doesn’t make you fat. The process of getting fat makes you overeat.”

Here’s an excerpt:

Dr. Ludwig, an obesity expert and professor of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, argues that weight gain begins when people eat the wrong types of food, which throws their hormones out of whack and sets off a cycle of cravings, hunger and bingeing. In his new book, “Always Hungry?,” he argues that the primary driver of obesity today is not an excess of calories per se, but an excess of high glycemic foods like sugar, refined grains and other processed carbohydrates…

Simply cutting back on calories as we’ve been told actually makes the situation worse. When we cut back on calories, our body responds by increasing hunger and slowing metabolism. It responds in an effort to save calories…

It’s the low fat, very high carbohydrate diet that we’ve been eating for the last 40 years, which raises levels of the hormone insulin and programs fat cells to go into calorie storage overdrive.

My take: The idea of changing the types of foods that we consume is not new in the fight against excessive weight gain.  Some of the best data on healthy eating is associated with the Mediterranean diet.

Related blog posts:

Another review (from the NY Times) of the book ‘Happy Gut’ describes a diet promoted by a NY internist to help with problems like irritable bowel: Seeking a ‘Happy Gut’ for Better Health. “Cutting out dairy and gluten reversed many of his symptoms. Replacing processed foods with organic meats, fresh vegetables and fermented foods gave him more energy and settled his sensitive stomach.”

Banning Mills

Banning Mills


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