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PostPosted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:26 pm 
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Note: Some people feel that the diet described bellow is unhealthy and dangerous. Before staring a diet plan research it thoroughly and consult with a physician.



Starches make great long term disaster supplies. That have a shelf life that ranges from good to amazing. Things like Rice, Beans, Wheat, Oats ETC; have long been staples in disaster supply pantries. But are high starch foods good for us? Dr.John McDougall thinks so and I agree with him. On youtube I came across one of his "The Starch Solution" presentations. He gave some compelling arguments for adopting a starch based diet. Since I was already leaning in the direction of starches because of their self life; I decided to give it a try. The 26 pounds I have lost so far has proven to me that it works great. Here is an overview of Dr.McDougall's diet and where I don't agree with him 100%

The diet is based around starches. He says 70% of your calories should come from starches. Starches are: Grains, Legumes, Tubers, and Winter Squashes. Unrefined starches are preferable. Things like white flour should be avoided. Brown rice is preferable to white rice. However I do white rice because it has a better shelf life. I haven't had any issues eating white rice. So I will continue eating white rice. For pasta I do whole wheat pasta. It's more nutritious and has a good shelf life. One of my favorite starches is russet potatoes. So many tasty things you can do with potatoes. Here is one I Like. I heat up some cooked pinto beans and mix in some corn, spinach (or kale), garlic, salt, pepper, chili pepper, maybe some BBQ sauce. Whatever sounds good. I take the bean mixture and pour it on top of a baked potato. Yummy :awesome:

The rest of your calories come from fruits and vegetables. You can pretty much go with whatever fruits and veggies you like. I think it's good to go for higher nutrient veggies like kale. That way if I don't eat as many servings of veggies as I should I still get a decent amount of nutrients Whole produce is preferable to juice. It's easy to pack on extra calories from juice. One week I only lost a half a pound. I realized I had been drinking a fair bit of store bought juice that week. Juice is fine but it should be in moderation. I like to do a smoothie for breakfast that has berries and veggies in it. That way no matter what I eat the rest of the day I know I got at least some veggies in my diet.

His diet is low fat, so oil should be avoided. I don't agree 100% with Dr.McDougall on this one. I think a little oil can be fine as long as you are careful. I am not oil free and am losing weight just fine. However I try to limit my use of oil to things where it really makes sense. I use olive oil to season my cast iron pans. A properly seasoned pan doesn't need any additional oil to keep things from sticking. I also use oil to make popcorn. Popping in coconut oil is really the best way to make popcorn. I don't eat popcorn very often; the coconut oil used isn't an issue. So oil can be just fine. I depends on the quantity and the person.

Higher fat foods like nuts, seeds, and avocados should be eating in moderation. I agree with this one. It's easy to overeat things like almonds. So I am just careful about mindlessly snacking on nuts.

His diet is free of animal products. I don't entirely agree with him. Right now I am avoiding animal products (except honey) to help with weight loss. However I am not convinced that a vegan diet is a good idea long term. Once I get my weight down I plan on adding a little meat back into my diet. From a disaster standpoint any sort of vegetarian diet can be problematic. In a survival situation the only available food might be whatever animal you can hunt. If someone has been vegetarian long enough; I would bet they would have a hard time digesting meat. So even if you are vegan (regardless of reason) it's not a bad idea to eat enough meat so your body still knows what to do with it. These days humanly raised, organic, free range, type meat is more readily available. So for ethical vegans there is a less bad option for maintain an ability to eat meat. When I go back to eating meat my plan is two servings of meat a week.

Sugar is fine. I agree with this one too. Sprinkling some brown sugar on your oatmeal to make it taste good is just fine. High fructose sugars like corn syrup and agave syrup should be avoided. I use gold old fashioned white sugar in my coffee. A couple of tea spoons in a 16oz coffee hasn't impacted my weight loss. So I will continue to use sugar in my coffee. Other sweeteners I use are brown sugar, honey, and maple syrup. So go right ahead and pour some maple syrup on your pancakes. Just be mindful of how sugar impacts you. Too much sugar isn't good for you. So far my sugar consumption hasn't caused me any problems. So I will continue to eat sugar as I do. I avoid all artificial sweeteners.

Salt is fine. Salt makes food taste good. Dr.McDougall points out that it's hard to get people to eat the food if they can't have salt. I love potato. But it can be bland on it's own. A little salt really brings out the flavor. Salt is an important part of our diet. There is a reason why we have a taste bud for salty. One of my sisters friends was having fainting issues or some such. Her issues were due to being low in salt. So yea skipping the salt can be harmful. Unless you have a medical reason to do so; there is really no reason to limit your salt. I try to avoid buying things that already have salt in them. I prefer to add the salt my self so I can control how much I am eating. I use just enough salt to make the food taste good. That ensures that I wont over consume sodium.

There is no measuring or counting calories. Starches have so much substance that it's hard to overeat them. 500 calories of potato will fill up your stomach. I eat until I don't feel like eating anymore. If I get hungry later I eat some more. Rather than worrying about how much I eat, when I eat, or how fast I eat. I just worry about WHAT I eat. If I eat plenty of starches and go easy on the fat I can't help but lose weight.

If you want to learn more about this way of eating. You can buy Dr.McDougall's book "The Starch Solution". I picked up my copy at Barns & Noble. Or you can just watch one of his presentation. His presentation is how I got started. He gives enough info to get you going. He also has a website with a forum

https://www.drmcdougall.com/

For those with the time and money; you can attend his week long program in Santa Rosa California. Since he is a real licensed physician, his week long program wouldn't be a bad idea for people with serious health issues. If you have health issues it's always good to be under the supervision of a physician when starting a new diet plan. Details about his program are available on his website.

Here is one of his presentations. It's about an hour long but well worth watching.




So add some starches to your pantry. They are excellent long term survival food and excellent for your health. If anyone has any questions I will be more than happy to answer them.

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Last edited by Purple_Mutant on Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 12:13 am 
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This sounds incredibly similar to the Ornish diet (low fat vegetarian) or "Food for Life" (Neal Barnard), low fat vegetarian/vegan.

They're both potentially very healthy diets, and certainly easier to do food storage for than paleo or Atkins type diets, if that's working for you, awesome.

Compared to the 'average' American diet, anything that has folks eating less processed foods and more fruits and/or veggies, and be mindful of stopping eating when full, tends to be a great improvement!

I'm a bit similar - I'm not vegetarian but we do try to cut down on meat, it works well for us. I will say that since white rice does store nicely, I've got my 30-year storage as white rice, but I rotate 3-6 months of brown rice in the pantry, to consume the healthier food now since it's not the apocalypse.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 3:01 am 
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Yea this is similar to other low fat vegan diets. The biggest difference is the focus on starches. Other diets place more emphasis on fruits and veggies.

Of course a starch based diet doesn't have to be vegan. Traditional starch based diets aren't vegan. They do however tend to be low meat. I would be curious to see how well a low meat starch based diet works for weight loss. Although I do think going vegan for a few months isn't a bad idea. Getting all that crap out of your diet helps you lose your taste for it. I don't really have a taste for meat these days. So when I go to add some meat back into my diet; it will be much easier to do so in moderation. Regardless of where my weight is I do plan on having some turkey on thanksgiving and some sweet and sour chicken on my birthday in Dec.

One of the things I plan on doing in the future is looking into pantry friendly meats that aren't heavily processed. I am thinking things like Jerky and Pemmican. Given how calorie dense it is; pemmican sounds like just the thing for a BOB or backpacking pack. To that you could easy to cook starches like pasta and potato flakes. Along with dehydrated veggies. One trick I saw on youtube was cooking up some penne and mixing it with pasta sauce. The penne and sauce was then dehydrated. The dry sauce stuck to the dry pasta. To bring it back to life you just add some hot water. You could beef up (pun intended) the calories of a dyhdrated pasta meal by mixing in a little pemmican when you heat it up.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 4:23 am 
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Before anyone gets into diet gurus, I recommend getting hold of a college-level nutrition textbook that goes into the basic biochemistry behind everything. It easily helps to cut through the BS of internet nutrition advice with its tendency to slander one thing after another as a new evil. Most of the "evils" of today whether they be fat, carbs, fructose etc, aren't so clearly dangerous when you look at the evidence.

Most of the time this just leads into a trap of foregoing carbs, fructose, or fat or all animal products. They're so focused on what they avoid that they don't notice the glaring nutritional deficiencies.

Too much of a vegan, you get glaring B12 and iron deficiency. Too low carb, you end up starting a blog about your brutal workout regimen and how you "EAT MEAT NOT WHEAT" but then hit an insurmountable wall with your training. Except it's not insurmountable. The low carber just needs to throw out the scare books and eat some potatoes.

Not saying anyone here does this, but it's always good to make an examination of macronutrient, calorie, vitamin and mineral intake. Figure out what needs to be in just as much as what needs to be out.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 8:34 am 
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This has to be one of the stupidest diets I've ever heard of.

Ninja-Edit:
The more I read about it the more dangerous and unhealthy it seems to be. Strongly advise against anyone following this.

"How to get type 2 diabetes, waste away muscle, and eat boring food"

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:19 am 
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the_alias wrote:
This has to be one of the stupidest diets I've ever heard of.

Ninja-Edit:
The more I read about it the more dangerous and unhealthy it seems to be. Strongly advise against anyone following this.

"How to get type 2 diabetes, waste away muscle, and eat boring food"

Agreed.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:59 am 
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Were this a more heavily moderated forum I'd lock and bury this for bad/dangerous information. As it is we're not like that so I'll briefly elaborate.

- You need protein to maintain and build muscle. No you don't have to be a body builder or a gymrat, but you do need to feed your muscles and the best way to do this is animal products. Eggs, cheese, milk, meat, fish. Yes there are some vegan body builders out there, but understand they are only able to do what they do due to relatively advanced ways of extract plant proteins and consume them in enough quantities (oh and steroids are vegan :lol: )

- You need fat. No you don't have to eat Atkins, Keto, or Paleo, but you do need healthy fats in your diet. Butters, healthy oils, animal fat. More and more evidence is arising that shows the fat scares of yesteryear were based on bad science. Fat is an incredibly good form of fuel. Want to know how the Inuit were able to survive in the far north? It wasn't because they were out in the fields growing rice now.

- Sugar is not 'fine'. Sugar is really bad for you, this is not controversial. It's highly addictive and eating too much of it well, yeah type 2 diabetes. Need we say more. Enjoy it in moderation if you can, no one is perfect. Cutting the crap soda from your diet would be a great idea. My aunt who is a pediatrician on the East coast isn't dealing with 2 year olds who have type 2 diabetes because they have been fed too much fat/protein.

- Salt. Yeh this is about the only thing he says that makes sense, salt has been wrongly demonized, but again in moderation. You should salt for flavour more than anything else in my humble opinion.

- Starches. Nothing wrong with them but there is simply no way your diet should consist of 70% calories from them. Do so at your own risk.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 3:09 pm 
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To add something: Why do these kind of radical diets often produce weight loss?

I'm not Gary Taubes but a very layman attempt:

Well for the HFLC (high fat low carb) diets usually it is because of a change in energy burning. Many people who are overweight are carrying a lot of fat and they aren't burning it. Instead they are using cheap carbs to provide their energy all the time, the excess of that is stored. This is where the insulin debate comes in and frankly I'm not super well versed on it but the argument is basically that carbs drive insulin production which produces more stored fat. (Please do correct me if I'm wrong, been a while since I read all this and am just posting from memory vs a detailed search of sources).

So with the HFLC instead of burning fat your body burns the easy glucose that is more readily available in cheap carbs. Of course for some things your body needs to burn glucose, usually if your HR rises above a certain threshold and it NEEDS THE ENERGY NOW. Whereas you can cruise around walking for a long time burning fat slowly.

So with super low carb stuff you go into Ketosis and bam radical weight loss.

Now with this bizarre Starch diet - honestly I'm not entirely sure why people would experience such radical similar weight loss (and frankly I expect it isn't equivalent otherwise this would be way more popular, say what you will but the sheer amount of people now talking about Keto or Paleo diets speaks that it is at least working. I've never heard of this diet)

My theories would be: (and some are more BroScience than anything else :crazy: )

- Certain starches do provide a feeling of satiation and maybe people reach that quicker so their overall calorie count does drop.
- Any radical shift shocks the body somewhat and it burns what it has in some kind of response.
- Starving your muscles of protein causes muscle loss and as muscle weighs more than fat you get a bigger effect.

I'll end this with point about a friend of mine who was obese who now isn't. He did it the old fashioned way without any fad diets, just time in the gym and portion control + cutting the stuff like soda and excess drinking. Radical stuff can be appealing and indeed it can work - sometimes we all forget the old basics work as well :)

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:07 pm 
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Obviously personal anecdotes are not reliable as a data source, but I grew up eating something pretty similar to the diet described. The majority of my calories were coming from grains/starches, with lots of veggies, some fruit, and some oils. Not a lot of animal protein; we weren't vegetarian, but close to it. My mother put in a lot of time and effort to home cook healthy meals, and we didn't eat a lot of processed food.

Sounds great right? All respect to my mother, but that diet had way less protein than I needed to function best. My energy levels and emotional state are much better (also, I am in much less danger of becoming underweight) with at least two meals of the day containing a good chunk of protein. I am grateful that my mother raised me to appreciate good food (and I don't crave junk food as comfort food the way many other people do because I didn't eat it much as a child), but my diet as a child and young adult had a large flaw in that it didn't contain enough protein.

I think any diet that eliminates or greatly reduces a macronutrient (carbs, protein, fats) will probably make you lose weight because your digestive system is having to work much harder to try to convert things and make up the deficit. But, probably not a good idea in the long run, and please don't feed it to your children.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:18 pm 
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How are your teeth, Sun Yeti?

My childhood diet was carbohydrate heavy and my dentists as an adult have all had the opinion that my poor teeth can be attributed to that diet.
Poor nutrition as a child can not ever be completely overcome.
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In regard to weight loss diets...
They ALL work as long as you follow them.
They all say to watch everything you eat, avoid refined carbs, exercise, etc... only the details change.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:33 pm 
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the_alias wrote:
This has to be one of the stupidest diets I've ever heard of.

Ninja-Edit:
The more I read about it the more dangerous and unhealthy it seems to be. Strongly advise against anyone following this.

"How to get type 2 diabetes, waste away muscle, and eat boring food"


This diet is based off traditional diets. People eating those traditional diets don't get type 2 diabetes. People living in blue zones eat starch based diets. Dr.McDougall does a much better job of describing it than I do. That's why I included the video of his presentation. I haven't come across a single case of diabetes from following this diet. However I have come across cases of people reversing or reducing diabetes. If this diet were as unhealthy as you claim; something about it's dangers should have come up. The closest thing I have come across is a generic "carbs are bad" or "carbs make you fat". But no one saying "I followed the McDougall diet and developed health problems. Where as I have found such things with other diets. Like the raw vegan diet.

As far as protein goes; there is plenty of it. Every plant food contains some amount of protein. Some more than others. Legumes have plenty of protein and are part of the diet. They are starches after all. Just today I was looking at protein recommendations. Getting the recommended amount of protein isn't a problem. Protein deficiencies are pretty rare among people getting enough calories. When was the last time you heard of someone with kwashiorkor? Kwashiorkor is pretty rare in developed countries. As for fat. The diet is low fat, not fat free. Fat is absolutely necessary. Things like nuts and avocados aren't prohibited on this diet. Only oil is prohibited. But I still use a little bit of oil. I am not concerned at all about getting enough fat. I eat enough nuts, seeds, and peanut butter to satisfy my nutritional requirement for fat. As for sugar. Some sugar in ones diet is fine. Excessive consumption of sugar is not. Especially sugars high in fructose. He's not telling people to eat unlimited sugar.

I am getting some blood work done soon. That should tell me if there are any problems. I have been at this for about 4 months and as far as I can tell there haven't been any problems so far.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:15 pm 
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Ok I added a disclaimer to the top of my original post.

I have spent plenty of time researching diets. I have seen some crazy ideas out there. However Dr.John McDougall's ideas aren't the latest crazy fad. These are ideas he has been developing over the course of a few decades. Some of the details might be flawed. But the basic idea of a starch based diet has a solid historical and scientific foundation. Grains, Legumes, Tubers, and Winter squashes have been the staple of people's diets since the dawn of civilization. People in developing countries get most or many of their calories from starches. They don't have the high rates of heart disease and diabetes you see you in first world countries.

I am mindful of how my diet makes me feel. If I didn't feel well; I would try something different. But over all I feel better than I did.

If people want to have a discussion/debate on whether or not starch based diets are healthy; I am all for it. However the discussion should be based on facts and logic. In the more recent past there has been an increasing anti carb hysteria. There is lots of paleo and gluten free floating around. But none of that seem to be based on sound science.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:43 pm 
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Sun Yeti wrote:
Obviously personal anecdotes are not reliable as a data source, but I grew up eating something pretty similar to the diet described. The majority of my calories were coming from grains/starches, with lots of veggies, some fruit, and some oils. Not a lot of animal protein; we weren't vegetarian, but close to it. My mother put in a lot of time and effort to home cook healthy meals, and we didn't eat a lot of processed food.

Sounds great right? All respect to my mother, but that diet had way less protein than I needed to function best. My energy levels and emotional state are much better (also, I am in much less danger of becoming underweight) with at least two meals of the day containing a good chunk of protein. I am grateful that my mother raised me to appreciate good food (and I don't crave junk food as comfort food the way many other people do because I didn't eat it much as a child), but my diet as a child and young adult had a large flaw in that it didn't contain enough protein.

I think any diet that eliminates or greatly reduces a macronutrient (carbs, protein, fats) will probably make you lose weight because your digestive system is having to work much harder to try to convert things and make up the deficit. But, probably not a good idea in the long run, and please don't feed it to your children.


Of course getting enough protein is important. The optimal levels will vary from person to person. So people need to tweak their diet accordingly. If I were concerned that I wasn't getting enough protein I could eat some more beans or peanut butter. I like to add hemp seeds to my morning smoothie. Hemp seeds have a complete protein and some good fats. I think people have a tendency to overstate the importance of protein. If you are having issues due to low protein levels; then of course you should boost your protein intake. However the loads of protein people consume these days may be excessive.

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I think something may not have been quite clear. When Dr.McDougall says the word starch he means; Grains, Legumes, Tubers, and Winter squashes. So in his view 70% of your calories should come from foods in those categories. I don't see how getting most of your calories from those 4 groups is a bad thing. That's what the longest lived people on the planet do. His 70% figure might be high. Issues with details don't detract from the basic idea of a starch based diet. I have no idea what percentage of my calories come from starches. It may be less than 70% I just focus on starches and don't worry about the actual percentage.

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Purple_Mutant wrote:
the_alias wrote:
This has to be one of the stupidest diets I've ever heard of.

Ninja-Edit:
The more I read about it the more dangerous and unhealthy it seems to be. Strongly advise against anyone following this.

"How to get type 2 diabetes, waste away muscle, and eat boring food"


This diet is based off traditional diets. People eating those traditional diets don't get type 2 diabetes.

No it really isn't.

All traditional diets involve far more animal products.

His anti-animal product stance is ANTI-Traditional.

Clearly based on your posts you've completely bought into this and aren't willing to consider alternatives.

Quote:
If people want to have a discussion/debate on whether or not starch based diets are healthy; I am all for it. However the discussion should be based on facts and logic. In the more recent past there has been an increasing anti carb hysteria. There is lots of paleo and gluten free floating around. But none of that seem to be based on sound science.

:roll:

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the_alias wrote:
Purple_Mutant wrote:
the_alias wrote:
This has to be one of the stupidest diets I've ever heard of.

Ninja-Edit:
The more I read about it the more dangerous and unhealthy it seems to be. Strongly advise against anyone following this.

"How to get type 2 diabetes, waste away muscle, and eat boring food"


This diet is based off traditional diets. People eating those traditional diets don't get type 2 diabetes.

No it really isn't.

All traditional diets involve far more animal products.

His anti-animal product stance is ANTI-Traditional.



Clearly based on your posts you've completely bought into this and aren't willing to consider alternatives.

Quote:
If people want to have a discussion/debate on whether or not starch based diets are healthy; I am all for it. However the discussion should be based on facts and logic. In the more recent past there has been an increasing anti carb hysteria. There is lots of paleo and gluten free floating around. But none of that seem to be based on sound science.

:roll:


Of course traditional diets include animal products. Vegan diets aren't traditional. Like I said in my original post I am not convinced that vegan diets are a good idea long term. I plan on introducing meat back into my diet once I get my weight down. What I meant when I said that his diet is based on traditional diets is that many (most?) traditional diets are starch based. I agree with the basic idea of a starch based diet. However I don't agree 100% with Dr.McDougall's diet. I stated my disagreements in the original post. Dr.McDougall takes the idea behind traditional starch based diets and takes them to the extreme. He is a medical doctor who sees patients with serious health issues. So for those people it may be a very good idea to follow his diet 100% till they get their health issues under control. But following his diet 100% for ever may be a bad idea. As long as I don't run into any problems I plan to eat a starch based diet for the rest of my life. However, after I get my weight down my diet wont be vegan and wont be as low in fat as it is now.

*edit*

As for considering alternatives. What I am doing right now is working and is easy for me to stick with. So there is no good reason for me to try something else. As they say "if it aint broke, don't fix it". However if I run into any health problems I can change my diet as need be. In researching diet plans I came across orthorexia, which is an unhealthy obsession with clean eating. I have heard of low fat raw vegans having issues from such a low fat consumption. Despite the health health problems they keep at it because they have been lead to believe that their diet is the healthiest diet out there. People are told that feeling like crap is just your body detoxing. A healthy diet should make you feel good. If your diet makes you feel like crap; then it isn't a healthy diet. My diet makes me feel good. If my diet ever makes me feel bad; then I will change it. It's always important to pay attention to the impact your diet has on your health. My old diet was having a very bad impact on my health. Obesity + crap diet + smoking = recipe for heart disease. I gave up the smoking and have changed my diet. So now I am not worried about heart disease anymore.

Of course I do find nutrition to be an interesting topic. So I am always open to learning about other diet plans.

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the_alias wrote:
Purple_Mutant wrote:
This diet is based off traditional diets. People eating those traditional diets don't get type 2 diabetes.

No it really isn't.

All traditional diets involve far more animal products.

His anti-animal product stance is ANTI-Traditional.

Clearly based on your posts you've completely bought into this and aren't willing to consider alternatives.

Quote:
If people want to have a discussion/debate on whether or not starch based diets are healthy; I am all for it. However the discussion should be based on facts and logic. In the more recent past there has been an increasing anti carb hysteria. There is lots of paleo and gluten free floating around. But none of that seem to be based on sound science.

:roll:

Ah - whose traditions involve "far more" animal products? Some places, yes, other places no. The Jains have been doing lacto-veganism since at least the 8th Century BCE. Animal products, in the form of dairy alone, yes. "Far more?" depends on your definition of more I suppose. (different restrictions on what types of carbs for the Jains too. Not promoting the diet, just providing a very, very long tradition as an example.)

I am too damn busy to pull up the very nice study of vegetarianism vs low-meat consuption that showed a higher cancer rate in the low meat consuption group. The meta-analyses I see for overall morbidity/mortality favor vegetarian or pescatarian diets. But everybody needs to accept that this is a complicated subject that not a single one of the fad diets, including paleo or the all-animal-product diet that somebody was going on about a while ago addresses all areas of data or concern.

I'm not a huge fan of the way the low-fat low/no animal product folks frame their science, but the way the paleo/atkins/low carb folks talk about their science isn't any better. Figure out what works for YOU, but please accept that there's absolutely no One True Way here.

The point about it being easier to store starches still seems to stand.

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duodecima: I understood Jains to be lacto-vegetarians - milk and dairy products are ok so yeah they use animal products....I don't think we are in disagreement here. If the diet advocates zero animal products, any diet with animal products is by definition far more, moving from nothing to some is the biggest step if you follow.

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That man likely built his body with lacto-vegetarianism, lots of milk, clarified butter, veggies, chickpeas etc. So of course you can be meat free and healthy, I'm not trying to argue otherwise.
I have stated numerous times in my posts here one need not go to the extremes of either side here

Keep in mind I have lived over 20 years of my life as a pescatarian, I'm not talking without experience.

RE studies and cancer. The famous case of the French paradox and the Japanese paradox of smoking spring to mind here.
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the_alias wrote:
RE studies and cancer. The famous case of the French paradox and the Japanese paradox of smoking spring to mind here.

Yeah, those are always the trick with the big studies. The one I was referring to used vegetarian vs. meat eating 7th Day Adventists for part of its analysis to try to control for that. It's not a perfect study - just refuting the implication that the low carb or paleo diets have an obviously superior evidence base as compared to a low fat or low-animal-product diet.

I do agree with almost everything you've said, nor do I feel this is a settled point (that is in fact my point!) but there have certainly been traditional diets where something approaching 70% of calories came from carbohydrates. Japan comes to mind (I see estimates as high as 68% carbohydrate).

I think we've all ended up clarifying to general agreement on a lot of things.

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duodecima wrote:
The point about it being easier to store starches still seems to stand.


The whole point I was trying to make; which I seem to have not made clearly enough. Is that Starches are shelf stable food sources that are Healthy. They should be a part of your supplies and every day diet. I used the McDougall diet as an example because A. It's being promoted by a medical doctor and B. It's working great for me. Of course I am not following his diet 100% nor do I agree with him 100%. He is simply a doctor who says starches are good for you. Based on my 4 months of being on a starch based diet; I would have to agree. There seems to be a lot of anti carb sentiment out there. I just wanted to make the point that beans, rice, oats, wheat ETC are excellent items to have in your pantry. How much of those are part of your diet is up to the individual. I don't know if 70% of my calories come from starches; it's probably less than that. However I don't see how it would be problematic if I did get 70% of my calories from starches. There was one time my diet consisted pretty much of just white rice and potatoes, cooked in oil with sweet chilli sauce. No fruits or vegetables. I don't recall how long I eat that way. But it was at least a few months . At the time I was obese and unhealthy. All that oil and lack of veggies wasn't good for me. However I didn't suffer any major health problems. My cholesterol was probably high. I smoked at the time which only contributes to heart disease. However I never had a heart attack or stroke. I also never developed any vitamin deficiency diseases. I think the only reason I never got scurvy was the vitamin C in the potatoes. So if a crappy version of a starch based diet never lead to any serious medical problems; a much healthier version shouldn't be a problem. However only time will tell how this all works out long term. For now, I am losing weight and feeling great. So I will keep doing what I am doing.

Just in case this wasn't made clear in my other posts. I don't advocate a vegan diet long term. Short term is great as part of a healthy diet. But there seems to be a lack of data to support vegan diets long term. If someone does decide to go vegan long term they need to make sure to take a vitamin B12 supplement. In fact it seems that many people are low in vitamin B12 and should take a supplement. Vitamin B12 seems to be deficient in modern diets.

Also, there are many many ways to do a vegan diet. You could consume nothing but potato chips, oreo cookies, and soda; and that would be a vegan diet. Years ago when I was vegan I had a crap diet. So you can't really make blanket statements about vegan diets like, "vegan diets are great for weight loss" or "vegan diets are crap". There are crap vegan diets and healthy vegan diets.

Starch based diets are great. However I am not a hard core McDougaller. Apparently people on the McDougall form can get a bit extreme. I am sure some of them would give me crap because my diet isn't 100% oil free.

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I used to be into low carb diets. I thought the paleo diet was the evolution of Weston A. Price's work. I thought carbs cause insulin spikes and that insulin makes you fat.

Then I got into lifting weights and doing high intensity workouts. I trained hard and I felt like I could tear through a wall. But guys who didn't train as hard as me always seemed to get better physiques with more muscle and leaner abs. I thought I needed to train more and eat more protein.

One friend of mine who I got into paleo, got fat based on some bad advice to "bulk up". Then he went keto several times to lose the weight, always losing some and then gaining it back. Later on he started pointing out how all the lean guys he knew were carb/sugar eaters.

Eventually I quit reading nutrition advice on fitness blogs (for a while). I took a nutrition class at my community college and studied the textbook to death. Started taking more science-based, reputable (and lean) nutrition gurus seriously too.


Want to know what I found?

Everything you read from the mainstream gurus, the mainstream press and thousands of little blogs is nonsense crap. A bunch of pencil necked pseudo-scientists with no abs, for the most part.

To start with, insulin doesn't make you fat. Calories make you fat. Insulin increases sugar uptake into the cells of the body, lowering blood sugar. It's also an anabolic hormone that's required to build muscle. Diabetes is a lack of insulin production or lack of insulin sensitivity, and you can't just get it from eating carbs.

As for carbs making you fat at all, that's all been torn to pieces by metabolic ward studies. Gurus have been trying to convince us that calories don't matter for decades. But controlled trials are showing them up at every turn. there's no evidence of a "metabolic advantage" to eating low carb. It doesn't exist.
(If you want fancy books about this, check out "The Low Carb Myth" or "In Defense of Sugar". Or just go read any commentary by Anthony Colpo, Stephan Guyenet, Alan Aragon or Lyle McDonald)


So here's the truth about nutrition:

Natural sugars will not kill you. Read the bible of sugarphobes: Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Dr. Weston A. Price.
They quote the hell out of this book and talk about Dr. Price's findings, but they either ignore or don't want you to notice what he actually said. Yes, he surveyed all kinds of people and found that the ones on sugary diets were in poor health, but he attributed that to the lack of vitamins and minerals in white sugar and white flour. Peoples who ate lots of vegetables, sweet potatoes, whole grains and fruit were fine.
You can drink orange juice, you can eat a lot of fruit. You can eat several servings of whole grains (preferably fermented or sprouted) and potatoes and be fine. Those foods are closer to their natural state and contain the nutrients that your body needs to thrive. They also contain carbs, which give you energy, help you win races and aid in muscle building.
Dr. Price was a great nutritionist. But half the bloggers quoting him don't know anything.

If people were actually eating traditional diets, they wouldn't be eating anything like Atkins or Taubes advise. They certainly wouldn't be eating a super high fat diet unless they were descended from Masai or Eskimos.

Societies not touched by industrial civilization eat starchy foods all the time. Hunter-gatherers eat more varieties of fruit, vegetable and nut than you'll find in a whole grocery store.

And if you want to eat meat like your ancestors, you're probably doing it waaaay wrong if you only get your meat from a supermarket. For one thing, animals living indoors eating soy made by chopping up the Amazon is a pretty new thing. For another, the traditional way to eat is to get at every part of the animal. A real hunter gatherer doesn't pop a chicken breast in the microwave. He goes right for the stomach contents of the animal (the carbs). Then he eats the liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, brain, glands, etc. (minerals, vitamin C and fat soluble vitamins)

Traditional diets also involve eating bugs. The average paleo dieter today would gag at the thought of eating grasshoppers, but bug eating has been normal all over the world longer than humans have been human.


So in short, carbophobia has no basis in truth. It's the same as strict fruitarianism or veganism. Don't demonize whole broad classes of food and macronutrients. Eat the most nutritious sources of carbs, fat and protein. You'll be fine, your food will actually taste good, you'll feel good and look good.


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Thanks for posting that Carjack. Sadly most people don't take the time to look at the studies and data. They just buy into diet gurus. In the internet age there are no shortage of them. Just look on youtube. :lol: There is a high carb guru on youtube that goes by the name durianrider. That guy has a video where pours him self a box of cornflakes (yes a whole box) and soy milk. He then proceeds to pour a crap ton of sugar on top. That A little sugar in ones diet is fine. But a crap ton of sugar on on cornflakes can't be healthy. So yea there are plenty of unhealthy things promoted as healthy. With so much information thrown at you, it's easy to get confused. To add to the confusion, most doctors get very little training in nutrition. But people will trust the opinions of doctors. Of course you can find doctors who support a variety of diets. It's good that you took the time to get educated on nutrition. Before trying a starch based diet I had spent a whole lot of time looking at nutrition info online. So I came into this not completely ignorant.

Dr.McDougall may take his diet to the extreme; but the foundation seems to be based on solid science from what I can tell. He has been eating and researching starch based diets for decades. So this isn't a new fad diet. In his newsletters he always includes citations to studies that back up what he says. I am not advocating following his diet 100%. However I do agree with starch based diets. I point people in the direction of Dr.McDougall because he's the only one I know who advocates for starch based diets. So you can use his ideas as a starting point and tweak things from there.

Starches have been disaster food staples for ages. So I figured people would be interested to know that there is a medical doctor who says that starches are healthy. With all anti carb stuff being thrown about; I wanted people to know that yes it's ok to have rice, beans, wheat, oats ETC in your pantry. I wasn't expecting the strong reaction I got. But I can understand why someone would have such a strong reaction. Dr.McDougall's version of a starch based diet is a bit extreme. I have been doing a slightly modified version of his diet and so far the results have been amazing. As of yesterday I have lost 28 pounds and I am feel much healthier.

Since I have been avoiding animal products I have been losing my taste for meat. They were giving out free samples of steak at the grocery store. I took one bite and tossed the rest of the sample. That one bite of steak didn't make me feel too good. In a survival situation I would be in trouble of the only food available were meat. So I may start adding meat back into my diet earlier than I had planned. I want to make sure to eat just enough meat that my body knows what to do with it.

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Purple Mutant - here is what I don't get. You've posted about this diet and ever since people have challenged you you've spent time qualifying it pretty heavily. You say
Quote:
They just buy into diet gurus. In the internet age there are no shortage of them.

And this seems exactly what you have done...

What is this Dr McDougall but a 'guru'? He is on the fringe as you and others have acknowledged. And his diet is extreme, to me it seems as extreme as a Keto diet, just the other way.

Anecdotal evidence that it is making you feel better does not qualify as anything for the rest of us. I've deliberately avoided posting quotes I've seen that rubbish this diet for that same reason.
Quote:
I wanted people to know that yes it's ok to have rice, beans, wheat, oats ETC in your pantry. I wasn't expecting the strong reaction I got

Of course it is ok to have these items. Where exactly have you seen it suggested otherwise?

I think most people here know that basic prepping can be as simple as rice and beans. Not controversial.

That being said clearly you will continue this diet in a modified form so I wish you the best of luck with your continued weight loss journey.

--------------
Carjack - Good post, sounds a bit like we had similar story though I would posit it is not so much carbophobia people are experiencing as gluten-phobia. Suddenly everyone and their dog has a mild or severe gluten allergy. Being friends with real coeliacs I have to chortle at this.

I do think carbs provide an easy overload of calories for many people and frankly this is also what gets confused and has led to the situation today. If you're working hard and burning calories it doesn't matter but most people are primarily sedentary so naturally they put on a lot of weight and hence 2/3 Americans are overweight.

Lastly having read quite a bit of training and nutrition discussion from mountaineers I still strongly believe converting your body to run off fat as primary fuel is optimal. Carbs have their place like everything else but when it comes to output you only want to be burning that glucose at the top range of your exertion.

Quote:
They certainly wouldn't be eating a super high fat diet unless they were descended from Masai or Eskimos.

Interestingly Caesar had this to say regarding the Germanic Suevi:
Quote:
They do not live much on corn, but subsist for the most part on milk and flesh, and are much [engaged] in hunting; which circumstance must, by the nature of their food, and by their daily exercise and the freedom of their life (for having from boyhood been accustomed to no employment, or discipline, they do nothing at all contrary to their inclination), both promote their strength and render them men of vast stature of body

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The Germans did value their wild game and especially wild boar. Boar was so important on feasting days that it even had religious significance. But I would be careful about drawing too much of the picture from Roman accounts. Their portrayals may have been politically motivated. You can see the contrast between what was written by outsiders and what Germanic groups wrote about themselves when they could. Just look at all the art we make of Germanic tribes based on classical accounts vs any history book that depicts them based on archaeological evidence.

Historical European diets vary a lot but have some common patterns. when foraging or hunting are primary food sources, it probably means an area had a very low population density. High population density makes agriculture a necessity. Northern cultures would use rye as a staple just because it grows easily int he North. Groups like the Swiss had diets fairly high in fat from milk and cheese, although they had their sourdough rye too.

Grains and carbs in general weren't made the same back then. People fermented a lot of food (wheat, rye, lentils, cabbage, etc.) in ways that improved taste and nutrition. Now we just run by a store and buy ready-made foods, made as cheaply and easily as possible. Lots of calories, not a lot of fiber or vitamins.

As for whether you should veer towards higher fat or carbs, there's no rule. There are a lot of factors. How much protein and fat do you need to build and repair the tissues of your body? What are your energy needs. Have you entered your food for a few days into a calorie/nutrient calculator? Have you had your blood tested?

Protein, fat and carb needs will vary by body composition and activity level. A sedentary adult can get by on 50 grams of protein a day, but that would starve an athlete or anyone who is serious about weight training.


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