Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Keep thin eat fat

I am a fan of Dr Robert Atkins. He showed people how to lose weight and emphasised that the problem with modern diets is that we consume too much carbohydrate. He had argued for decades (until he died after slipping onto the pavement on an icy New York St) that low fat diets miss the point. The following adds to the evidence that he is right. There is earlier evidence as well see Taubes.

Enjoy your bacon and eggs for breakfast but avoid plain white bread and high GI breakfast cereals. Don't eat margarine as it contains truely dangerous transfats. For your evening meal get stuck into, for example, a big steak with piles of vegies and salads but easy on the spuds and no high carb deserts. Lots of fish with fish oil supplements (if necessary) are good. If you want to snack eat nuts like macadamias or moderate quantities of cheeses, olives and, of course, veggies.
And tell Rosemary Stanton and other supporters of high carb eating to front with the evidence not just alarmist claims. Its is deceit they are pushing motivated by the propaganda of the grain-producing food industry. Even the recent CSIRO diet broadly endorses Atkins for his emphasis on cutting the carbs. It places more emphasis on proteins however.


Mark Upcher said...

You don't think Dr Atkins might have been pushing the propaganda of the livestock industry? And if he had not slipped over on the ice, he probably would have died of constipation.

Surely the answer lies in a balanced diet with a bias toward low processed foods; adequate fibre, protein and vitamins; and getting sufficient exercise. Not Atkins' ridiculous proposition.

Such a regime even allows you to enjoy in moderation (if you wish) some foods that are high in fat like bacon, butter and chocolate.

And of course up to 1-2 glasses of red a day!

hc said...

I don't think Atkins was a propagandist for the meat industry though he has had an effect in driving up the demand for red meat in the US at least. Many US restaurants now offer low-carb dishes not just diushes which are low fat.

Atkins supports your second para and particularly sought high levels of exercise. We need carbs but his suggestion was to avoid HI GI carbs like bread etc.

I think the evidence suggests Aitkins' proposition was not ridiculous and the CSIRO broadly endorse the approach of cutting back on carbs and persuing proteins.

His views on red were that the anti-oxidants in red wine were good for you but could be obtained from other foods without inbibing alcohol which is, after-all, a neurotoxin. I sometimes ignore Aitkins' advice on red wine.

steve munn said...

Wasn't Dr Atkins grossly overweight when he died? Didn't he have a heart attack?

Lucy Tartan said...

I'm certainly no expert but I believe the CSIRO diet is considered questionable. The Age says it was reviewed unfavourably by Nature.

dearieme said...

"up to 1-2 glasses of red a day": wowser!

Anonymous said...


you haven't seen the glasses I drink it out of! :-)

Mark Upcher said...

That was me not "anonymous"

Anonymous said...

the CSIRO diet doesn't endorse the atkins diet!! It has a principle in common, but different by degree. The CSIRO diet is more balanced than the atkins diet.

hc said...

Steve, apparently he put on 60 lbs due to fluid retention after his death. His heart problem, a cardiomyopathy, was claimed by his widow to be due to viral infection not diet. His physician confirmed this. His heart condition moreover was not responsible for his death -he slipped on ice and smashed his head on the pavement. That killed him. All of this is of course utterly irrelevant to assessing a diet anyway. No-one evaluates a diet by looking at the health of a single person even if the person was the founder of the diet.

Lucy, the authors of the CSIRO diet responded to the claims of Nature and rejected them as unsubstantiated. In my view it is the same old alarmist nonsense. Easy to access all this stuff on the web.

Anon, I agree the CSIRO diet differs but it has a similar emphasis on the value of proteins and healthy fats (fish oils etc).

I think even Atkins supporters are now becoming a little more careful in endorsing consumption of high levels of saturated fats.

Though they still reject the 'fat phobic' views of the mass media. They still question basing diets mainly on simple carbohydrates. This is Atkins main point.

The carbohydrate 'food pyramid' has failed to stop the obesity epidemic and diabetes 2 is now the 7th biggest cause of death in Australia. Something is seriously wrong with what we are being told about good nutrition. I will post further on these issues in the future.