Dr Expert speaks: He thinks "Calorie Restr... - Weight Loss NHS

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Dr Expert speaks: He thinks "Calorie Restriction" is a FAD diet!

I thought that keto was OTT unless you had cancer or some other non-communicable disease, and you were too underweight to fast?

Re IF (Intermittent Fasting) See:

healthunlocked.com/fasting-...

Re LCHF (Low-Carbohydrate, High-Fat diet) See:

healthunlocked.com/lchf-diet

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That was really interesting - thanks for sharing

I just wish that he had promoted the wine diet :D :D :D

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I'll join you on that one ! Really interesting, thank you :-)

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That's an excellent summary of the state of "diet" advice. Everyone who has ever attempted to "lose weight" by caloric restriction needs to watch this.

The take-home point is that, even if you don't understand the biochemistry, successfully maintaining a healthy weight boils down to modifying your appetite. Your eating behaviour, like that of any other animal, is a primal, mechanistic thing. Your self, your will, has no influence upon it except in very limited, short-term ways. Any diet that relies on overriding your instinctive behaviour with willpower is therefore doomed to fail long-term - as he points out, the statistics are very reliable on this, with 95%+ of "dieters" falling off the wagon sooner or later, and ending up right back where they started.

Caloric restriction absolutely is a fad. Not only has it been shown over and over again not to work, it has no basis in physiology; there's no theoretical reason why it would work.

I've done the same calculations myself on the USDA diet and come to the same conclusions about it. I really don't know why anybody is surprised that 50% of Americans are now diabetic or prediabetic. You could predict that outcome from first principles.

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Haven't watched the video, but I believe (from my own journey) that an understanding of the "calorific values" of food and what a "portion size" is have really helped me in my journey - to make choices about what food to eat and in what quantities!

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Hi, Pineapple27

I know that counting calories works for you - and. even if one does not count calories, "an understanding of the "calorific values" of food and what a "portion size" is helpful... but many of us find that, on LCHF and IF, we can lose weight without counting.

When I eat a bar of chocolate, it is nice to know that it is only 500 calories... and, maintaining, I need to eat about 500 calories more per day than when I was losing a pound a week!

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I'm sure it has. I follow your posts with interest. But just because it worked for you doesn't mean it works because you consciously reduced your portion sizes. As he says in the video, that tends to set up a cycle of failure, because for the vast majority, simply eating less does not work (indeed cannot work), and people eat less .. and less .. and less, until they're going mad with hungry and frustration. Or they give up and then return to it later ("yo-yoing") never actually making any long-term impact on their weight.

The important point is that calorie-counting plans often make multiple changes: not just "eating less", but changing the type of foods that people eat. And if someone is eating a bowl of sugary cereal for breakfast, a packet of biscuits for lunch, and spag bol out of jar for tea every day (as my cousin does!) then pretty much anything is an improvement, and may result in some weight loss. The counting is a ritual that doesn't have any physiological meaning, but it may nevertheless be part of a package that leads to the desired result.

He does explain why "calorie counting" occasionally works (statistically in about 3-5% of cases, depending on the study you read). When one reduces the size of one's meals then one automatically reduces carbs too; and you may reduce them a little or a lot, depending on the type of diet you eat. "Mediterranean", for example, tends to be more sustainable because it replaces quite a lot of carbs with green vegetables and fats. A high-carb low-fat USDA-style diet is usually a miserable failure because it often involves keeping the carbs exactly the same (in absolute terms - grams) but reducing fat and protein, which is the exact opposite of a healthy diet.

People have widely different carb tolerances, and for some, just backing away from the point of "lots and lots of carbs and zero fat" (=USDA/SAD) can be sufficient to get them out of the danger zone. Their bodies can cope again. But eating less isn't really part of the equation - that is, they had no actual need to reduce the fat and the protein along with the carbs. They only do that because it's part of the belief behind calorie counting, which is that human appetites don't work properly and we must override our appetite at all times if we wish to stay thin.

I would really recommend watching the video. The link looks like "You won't believe that this works!" clickbait nonsense, but in fact he does a very clear explanation of the science behind different dietary approaches and why they work (or don't, in the case of the USDA approach).

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Thanks for the précis TheAwfulToad 🙂 - interesting!

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Hi, TheAwfulToad, thanks for chipping in.

The theory is that it is staying active on this forum that makes it easy(er) to keep the weight off!

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Up to a point, that's probably true also. But look at the number of posters we get who report that they're "restarting". There are more of those than newbies. If calorie counting were so devastatingly effective, that wouldn't happen.

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I've lost 5 stone TWICE before and yes you guessed it, put it all back on both times. I couldn't believe how stupid I was to undo all my hard work like that, but listening to that, I was "on a hiding to nothing" ! I wish I had understood years ago how my body works and how different foods (carbs) react in the body. Keep spreading the word ! :-) x

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Motivation and determination help.

The SAD, WHO and NHS misinformation causes initial weight gain - and tends to cause hyper-insulinaemia, which makes it very difficult to lose it.

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Well hopefully I'm on the right track now ! :-) x

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Thank you so much for this.

Some very useful information. There seems to be however some contradictory information e.g. hypoglycaemia and need for starches for brain function (I think this is me btw as struggle with concentration and keep needing coffee. I just had a low carb bf and already feeling sluggish and drank loads coffee), as Keto works on just 5% carbs, it's not for me.

This demonstrates how much reading we all need to do to find an eating plan that works with our bodies, not against it. We need to listen to our bodies.

I think I will follow the LCHF diet but allow myself 30% carbs and see how I get on. The Keto I think will be too severe for me, so I've set my Loseit app to 80g but will allow myself up to 150g if I really need it as that is still low carb.

I question being able to do an all day fast so will start with 14:10 and work my way down to 16:8 to see how I get on.

I understand we eat too much protein to achieve autophagy so for health benefits I want to have 3 meat free days a week. I don't know how to do this though on a low carb diet.

Perhaps I should do LCHF on 4 days and IF on 3 days?

Any suggestions how to do this?

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Hi, Arty_28

One of the benefits of fasting (once you are in fat-burning mode) is that the brain works better when it is fueled by ketones.

I am glad that you are planning to gradually transition into "fat-burning mode".

I have no gall bladder, so full LCHF in combination with IF would not work for me, but moderate carbs are OK for most/some of us (as he says near the end of the video) so, like me, you could do moderate carbs and IF every day?

The theory is that, on IF/LCHF, you do not need to count anything - but counting for a start might be interesting.

Please give us progress reports.

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I may try IF every day if my body allows. Am taking one day at a time and will adjust accordingly. Yes will report back. Feel free to nudge me as I'm responding to several threads on this forum ;)

Thanks x

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You really don't need to over-think this, Arty - LCHF is much simpler than people make out. The problem is that we're so used to measuring out this and that, and tweaking our macronutrients, because the nutritionists tell us we have to, that it's hard to get out of the habit!

Drop the obvious carbs (flour-based products, potatoes, rice, sugar) and don't be afraid of adding fat if you want to. Use butter, olive oil, etc. where you think it's appropriate. Leave the fat on your meat. Voilà - you're doing LCHF. Within those broad limits, just follow your appetite regarding what to eat for dinner.

The thing about "your brain needs carbs to function" drives me up the wall, and it's one of those daft ideas that demonstrates how disgracefully little nutritionists know about biochemistry. A triglyceride (a fat molecule) is built from three fatty acids attached to a glycerol backbone. The glycerol ends up being converted to glucose (and in fact your body can synthesise more glucose from other things if it needs to - blood glucose must be maintained within very tight limits). The bottom line is that your brain needs only a couple of hundred kCal of glucose, and various other things - principally your red blood cells - need about 100kCal more. That's easily delivered from the usual dietary intake of fat. No starches are required. Almost everything in your body can run mostly or entirely on ketones or fatty acids - including your brain - and they can do so at full efficiency. These are not second-rate fuels.

Having said that, a carb-free meal is kinda boring, so feel free to add carbs to keep things palatable. Just because we don't need them doesn't mean we shouldn't eat them at all. Just try not to overdo it.

If you're feeling a bit grotty, it could be one of four things:

1) You're just going through the pain barrier (otherwise known as "keto flu") and it will sort itself out in a few days. Just hang in there.

2) You're not eating enough fat to make up for the missing carbs.

3) You haven't gone low enough with your carbs to switch off carb-burning mode. I know that sounds odd, but most people find they have to do a "keto" phase at the beginning, or they just keep craving carbs. Cutting down doesn't work as well as you'd think it should.

4) You're not adding salt to your meals. During low carb adaptation, your body gets a bit confused with electrolyte management. It'll sort itself out, but adding extra salt tends to fix the problem.

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Thanks for that, TheAwfulToad.

I try not to learn everything about biochemistry - but do triglycerides come from dietary fat, and ketones from stored (visceral or subcutaneous) fat? ...and there is another form of energy that we can synthesis from protein?

So... if we only need 300 or 400 Kcal per day to do nothing (or sleep), hypoglycaemia should not be a problem, even on a long waster-fast, if we are not doing much exercise?

...and some people with diabetes etc. can benefit from a (medically supervised) water fast for several days, or even weeks, to get them into ketosis, as used by Dr Jason Fung?

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Thank you for the tips. Yes I manage academic projects - I like to research things well and understand things, heh heh

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