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Author Topic:   More on Diet and Carbohydrates
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 31 of 243 (751144)
02-27-2015 4:16 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by Percy
02-26-2015 6:44 AM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
As I said before, the government's dietary advice is largely responsible for the low fat revolution that took over our grocery store shelves.

Percy, could you provide a pointer to some of this bad government advice? Right now, this discussion is loaded up with a bunch of 'they said' without any identification of who 'they' are.


Je Suis Charlie

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by Percy, posted 02-26-2015 6:44 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 33 by Percy, posted 02-27-2015 7:59 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
nwr
Member
Posts: 5647
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005
Member Rating: 7.7


(1)
Message 32 of 243 (751145)
02-27-2015 4:27 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Percy
02-27-2015 3:59 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
The government guidelines had precisely the dramatic effects I described and that you're ignoring.

Based on the reaction of the people that I know, the government guidelines had very little effect on what people eat.

By contrast, when the media had some reports about "pink slime", that had an immediate effect.

I'm more inclined to think that snacking while watching TV has more to do with obesity than any governmental guidelines.


Fundamentalism - the anti-American, anti-Christian branch of American Christianity

This message is a reply to:
 Message 30 by Percy, posted 02-27-2015 3:59 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 33 of 243 (751147)
02-27-2015 7:59 PM
Reply to: Message 31 by NoNukes
02-27-2015 4:16 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
NoNukes writes:

Percy, could you provide a pointer to some of this bad government advice?

Well, don't forget that I also blamed some organizations like the American Heart Association, but here you go:

1980 Dietary Guidelines for Americans

Short excerpt, this one on the misadvice about cholesterol:

A diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol can help maintain a desirable level of blood cholesterol.

The support for the part of this advice that mentions saturated fat is weak and is being called into question. It would be premature to draw any conclusions at this point about the connection between saturated fat and cholesterol, just suffice to say that the research as it existed in 1980 didn't support the advice.

Nina Telcholz's writes an excellent summary of the history of nutrition advice in the latter half of the 20th century in the introduction to her book The Big Fat Surprise. Follow this Amazon link, click on the "Look inside", scroll down to Introduction.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Grammar.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 31 by NoNukes, posted 02-27-2015 4:16 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
Jon
Inactive Member


Message 34 of 243 (751148)
02-27-2015 8:04 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Percy
02-27-2015 3:59 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
Whether or not you believe the government shares much responsibility, there can be no denying that the old guidelines were spectacularly wrong.

I'm agreeing with you on that just based on some of the links in your other posts. I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that the government guidelines were (still are?) wrong.

But being wrong is a lot different than being at fault.


Love your enemies!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 30 by Percy, posted 02-27-2015 3:59 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 35 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 7:14 AM Jon has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 35 of 243 (751155)
02-28-2015 7:14 AM
Reply to: Message 34 by Jon
02-27-2015 8:04 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
Jon writes:

But being wrong is a lot different than being at fault.

Well, okay, sure, correlation doesn't prove causation. So let's just say that at the same time that the government and groups like the American Heart Association were pushing diets low in fat and high in vegetables and grains that America became fatter, more diabetic, and more prone to heart disease. Offerings of low fat food in grocery stores expanded enormously, and the pasta and bread industries exploded. The advice had immediate and direct impacts in some quarters, such as school lunch programs.

We can also avoid any temptation toward drawing conclusions about causation in what's happening today and just say that at the same time that the dietary advice began to recognize the dangers of carbohydrates, especially refined carbohydrates, that the rates of obesity and diabetes began to show tentative signs of decline. This is a relatively recent development, so there isn't a lot of data. The impact on heart disease is even harder to ferret out because advances in medicine and reductions in smoking have caused a continual decline in deaths from heart disease since about 1970.

What evidence I did find is suggestive but not conclusive. These Heart and Stroke Statistics from the American Heart Association show blood pressure rising and serum cholesterol falling. Obesity rates in children 2-5 years in age began dropping around 2003, but in older age groups have held roughly steady or even increased. Obesity rates in adults continue to increase. allop reported that US diabetes and obesity rates had leveled off and began to decline in 2011.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 34 by Jon, posted 02-27-2015 8:04 PM Jon has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 36 by NoNukes, posted 02-28-2015 8:44 AM Percy has responded
 Message 38 by Jon, posted 02-28-2015 1:31 PM Percy has responded

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 36 of 243 (751161)
02-28-2015 8:44 AM
Reply to: Message 35 by Percy
02-28-2015 7:14 AM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
Well, okay, sure, correlation doesn't prove causation. So let's just say that at the same time that the government and groups like the American Heart Association were pushing diets low in fat and high in vegetables and grains that America became fatter, more diabetic, and more prone to heart disease

This, in a way, is similar to arguments regarding guns. People who live in high crime areas are more likely to insist on having guns in their homes, resulting in a crime rate/gun owning correlation.

I suspect that an alarming rise in bad health leads to warnings about bad diets. If such warnings were ignored wouldn't the result be pretty much what we've observed?

I'd like to believe that I could be convinced by some good science, but the problem is that there is not very much of that out there. People can become obese and sedentary on any diet, and they can be (at least apparently) physically fit on any diet where intake is limited. So what is proved when fat, sugar consuming, smokers have health problems?


Je Suis Charlie

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 7:14 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 37 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 12:21 PM NoNukes has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 37 of 243 (751169)
02-28-2015 12:21 PM
Reply to: Message 36 by NoNukes
02-28-2015 8:44 AM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
I'm not sure how to respond because I'm not sure what you're saying. Are you responding as you are because you read the material I referenced and reject it, or because you didn't read it and aren't familiar with the history of dietary advice in this country.

I'd like to believe that I could be convinced by some good science, but the problem is that there is not very much of that out there.

If I could rephrase this a little, I think there's a lot of good diet and health research out there, but it is often interpreted or extrapolated in unjustifiable ways. Initially suggestive research results that didn't hold up were often inappropriately used as the basis for dietary advice.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 36 by NoNukes, posted 02-28-2015 8:44 AM NoNukes has not yet responded

  
Jon
Inactive Member


Message 38 of 243 (751180)
02-28-2015 1:31 PM
Reply to: Message 35 by Percy
02-28-2015 7:14 AM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
It's not about correlation and causation. It's about blaming someone else for your problems.

People who have been following the government's guidelines yet still gaining weight should probably stop following them. They should also probably stop eating Big Macs.

Edited by Jon, : No reason given.


Love your enemies!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 7:14 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 39 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 4:33 PM Jon has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 39 of 243 (751187)
02-28-2015 4:33 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by Jon
02-28-2015 1:31 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
Jon writes:

It's not about correlation and causation. It's about blaming someone else for your problems.

I agree, one shouldn't blame someone else for one's problems, except when someone else *is* actually responsible for one's problems.

People who have been following the government's guidelines yet still gaining weight should probably stop following them.

You're repeating your position again having never addressed any of the detailed rebuttal.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 38 by Jon, posted 02-28-2015 1:31 PM Jon has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 40 by Jon, posted 02-28-2015 5:24 PM Percy has responded

  
Jon
Inactive Member


Message 40 of 243 (751189)
02-28-2015 5:24 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by Percy
02-28-2015 4:33 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
You're repeating your position again having never addressed any of the detailed rebuttal.

There's no detailed rebuttal. You want to blame the government for your bad health (or someone else's). I think that's a pointless thing to do and probably wrong as well.

It doesn't matter how bad their advice was. It doesn't matter if everyone followed it. It doesn't matter if following their advice was the only change made to American diets.

It's still not the government's fault that people got fat.

And that's assuming the evidence is perfectly in your favor. That assumption, though, isn't supported by reality. A lot of changes in lifestyle and eating habits accompanied/preceded the decline in Americans' health. Was it fast food? Sedentary lifestyles? Marketing junkfood to children? Parents who don't know how the hell to say 'no'? People listening to the government? There're so many pieces to the puzzle; many of which seem better culprits than the government's advice.

And that makes giving the government a substantial portion of the blame a completely irrational bunch of nonsense.


Love your enemies!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 39 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 4:33 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 44 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 11:16 PM Jon has responded

  
caffeine
Member
Posts: 1799
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Joined: 10-22-2008


(2)
Message 41 of 243 (751191)
02-28-2015 5:53 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Percy
02-27-2015 3:59 PM


Not all about carbohydrates
First off I'll admit that nutrition science is something I know very little about, but it seems to me that you're veering towards making the same sort of mistake you're claiming the people giving nutrition advice made in the '80s. They blamed fat for obesity, you blame carbohydrates, but the picture is probably more complex.

While trying to check some other claims you made in this thread, I found a comparison of how much fat and sugar different countries eat. The article where found the statistics made the point that Germans eat considerably more fat per capita then Americans, yet they are below the average in the OECD for obesity. This would seem to support your point about fat, but it made me do a bit more checking.

Another thing Germans consume more of than Americans is carbohydrates. They have a high fat/high carbohydrate diet... and yet they're thinner than Americans. I don't know what to make of this exactly, except that this is clearly complex, and statements like

quote:
Some of the negative health effects of low-fat/high-carbohydrate diets are very visible, like obesity,

are probably premature.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 30 by Percy, posted 02-27-2015 3:59 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 42 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 6:28 PM caffeine has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 42 of 243 (751192)
02-28-2015 6:28 PM
Reply to: Message 41 by caffeine
02-28-2015 5:53 PM


Re: Not all about carbohydrates
Hi Caffeine,

You say some things that are absolutely correct, but let's start with something that's maybe not so correct:

caffeine writes:

...statements like

quote:
Some of the negative health effects of low-fat/high-carbohydrate diets are very visible, like obesity,

are probably premature.

Americans' consumption of carbohydrates and rates of obesity both increased dramatically in concert. The currently ongoing change of emphasis from low-fat to low-carbohydrate diets is a direct reaction to this fact. There's no doubt here.

First off I'll admit that nutrition science is something I know very little about, but it seems to me that you're veering towards making the same sort of mistake you're claiming the people giving nutrition advice made in the '80s. They blamed fat for obesity, you blame carbohydrates, but the picture is probably more complex.

Absolutely the picture is much more complex than just carbohydrates. The point I'm making isn't that only carbohydrates are to blame for obesity, because that's not even true, but that past government and mainstream dietary advice about fat and carbohydrates are to blame for the obesity/diabetes/heart-disease epidemic of the last half century and more.

While trying to check some other claims you made in this thread, I found a comparison of how much fat and sugar different countries eat. The article where found the statistics made the point that Germans eat considerably more fat per capita then Americans, yet they are below the average in the OECD for obesity. This would seem to support your point about fat, but it made me do a bit more checking.

We're only just beginning to admit to ourselves how different the gathering of health data can be across different countries. Cross country comparisons should be viewed skeptically. For example, the French paradox concerning wine's health benefits? Likely fictional, a result of data gathering differences.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 41 by caffeine, posted 02-28-2015 5:53 PM caffeine has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 43 by Jon, posted 02-28-2015 9:44 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply
 Message 45 by caffeine, posted 03-01-2015 4:48 AM Percy has responded

  
Jon
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 43 of 243 (751197)
02-28-2015 9:44 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by Percy
02-28-2015 6:28 PM


Re: Not all about carbohydrates
The point I'm making isn't that only carbohydrates are to blame for obesity, because that's not even true, but that past government and mainstream dietary advice about fat and carbohydrates are to blame for the obesity/diabetes/heart-disease epidemic of the last half century and more.

What evidence is do you have that 60% of the population followed that advice?


Love your enemies!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 6:28 PM Percy has acknowledged this reply

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19891
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 8.7


Message 44 of 243 (751199)
02-28-2015 11:16 PM
Reply to: Message 40 by Jon
02-28-2015 5:24 PM


Re: Recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee
Jon writes:

There's no detailed rebuttal.

Certainly not on your part. Near the end of your message you mention a number of factors, but they're the kind of things that studies attempt to control for. You want to put in no effort and just declare that it's all so complicated that there's no way we could possibly know how it happened, but the reality is that there has been a great deal of detailed research, and I've described some of it at an undetailed level. You don't have to respond to it, but there's not really much to discuss if you don't.

It doesn't matter how bad their advice was. It doesn't matter if everyone followed it. It doesn't matter if following their advice was the only change made to American diets.

It's still not the government's fault that people got fat.

Keep in mind I didn't blame only the government. I think we just believe differently about whether the responsibility for bad advice lies with those who give it or those who follow it. The government and certain organizations represented their dietary advice as deriving from the best scientific research available, and that wasn't true. Such hubris shouldn't be given a free pass.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 40 by Jon, posted 02-28-2015 5:24 PM Jon has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 47 by Jon, posted 03-01-2015 12:06 PM Percy has responded
 Message 48 by NoNukes, posted 03-01-2015 12:32 PM Percy has responded

  
caffeine
Member
Posts: 1799
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Joined: 10-22-2008


(1)
Message 45 of 243 (751201)
03-01-2015 4:48 AM
Reply to: Message 42 by Percy
02-28-2015 6:28 PM


Re: Not all about carbohydrates
Americans' consumption of carbohydrates and rates of obesity both increased dramatically in concert. The currently ongoing change of emphasis from low-fat to low-carbohydrate diets is a direct reaction to this fact. There's no doubt here.

On the contrary, there seems to be considerable doubt. It seems you are correct that carbohydrate consumption was increasing while the obesity rate was increasing, but that was hardly the only change going on. Sugar consumption increased dramatically; the types of carbohydrates changed - with a huge increase in consumption of refined carbohydrates; the proportion of fibre in the diet went down; and probably most significantly, the total caloric intake went up.

Absolutely the picture is much more complex than just carbohydrates. The point I'm making isn't that only carbohydrates are to blame for obesity, because that's not even true, but that past government and mainstream dietary advice about fat and carbohydrates are to blame for the obesity/diabetes/heart-disease epidemic of the last half century and more.

Along with rising carbohydrate and sugar consumption, Americans have also eaten a lot more fat since the 70s (and more protein). I'm not sure you can blame government advice when people were clearly not listening to it, since they did not eat less fat.

I've copied in below a graph from a 2004 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The dotted line along the top tracks carbohydrate consumption over the 20th century. Note that it's the same at the beginning as at the end. I'm unaware of any obesity and diabetes epidemic at the turn of the 20th century.

The bars underneath track fibre consumption. That, as you can see, has plummeted, and this is probably a big part of the problem. Did government advice ever really consist of 'stop eating whole grains and consume a lot more refined corn syrup?'


This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Percy, posted 02-28-2015 6:28 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 46 by Percy, posted 03-01-2015 9:03 AM caffeine has not yet responded

  
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