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Don’t Count Calories to Lose Weight

Don’t count calories or you might avoid fat, the best energy food. Fat doesn’t raise your insulin as sugars and refined carbohydrates do. Robert Lustig M.D. says that the obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease that cost the US 147 Billion dollars a year can be blamed on sugars and refined carbohydrates. These raise your insulin, making you hungry for more carbs. He explains this in his latest book “Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity and Disease”. Dr. Lustig says that whole fruit has fiber to slow down the uptake of natural fructose. Juices and soft drinks with high-fructose corn syrup have easily absorbed sugars that your liver makes into tri-glycerides (fats). Sugars act on the same pleasure center of your brain as cocaine does. Sugars mess up your body’s reaction to leptin hormones as well as to insulin. Your body doesn’t get the signal that you’re satisfied so you continue wanting more carbohydrates. These easily become body fat.
In my book I say to avoid sweet liquids and have few desserts. My favorite is cheese cake because it has protein and fat to balance the carbohydrates. This more nearly corresponds to Dr. Barry Sears’ diets with 30% protein, 30% fat and 40% carbohydrate. A snack of nuts is preferable to a cookie. The fat can give you energy for your muscles and the protein can be changed to glucose for your brain, the only organ that requires glucose.
Calories in versus calories used could be measured using a sugar solution and a device to capture carbon dioxide while on a treadmill or exercise bike. These measurements show short term metabolism but neglect the other reactions also occurring in your body. Your body is not a machine. The uptake of dietary fat is not easily measured so it has been ignored as an energy food.
Jonathon Bailor in his new book “The Calorie Myth–How to Eat More, Exercise Less, Lose Weight and Live Better” explains how counting calories doesn’t work. The right type of food and the right exercise are what get results.

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Avoiding Fat Can Cause Obesity

Counting calories rarely works in long term weight loss. Your body is not a machine like the one used to measure calories. What you eat gets changed by your digestive system and by intracellular enzymes. Sugars or fats stimulate hormones that affect how you feel and react to further eating.
Fat is not just a passive storehouse of energy. It is a more efficient fuel for the body than carbohydrates. Dietary fat even bypasses the liver to go directly to the heart. The heart and other muscles prefer to burn fat. The brain is the one organ that requires glucose. A person on a low calorie diet quickly uses up body glycogen to nourish his brain. When that’s gone the person’s muscles break down to make amino acids to form blood sugars. Though proteins are inefficient energy foods they are necessary to build muscle, make enzymes and help the immune system.
Eating fat causes hormones that keep you satisfied for hours. This prevents you from eating too many carbohydrates that raise your insulin. Insulin opens the gates of all cells, including fat cells, to absorb sugar.
Eating fat increases the fat-burning enzymes in your liver and other cells. These are necessary to burn your body fat. With a low fat diet the fat-burning enzymes decrease while the enzymes that turn sugars into fat increase tremendously. . The fat in your hamburger may keep your heart pumping while the fat made from the sugars in a big soft drink leads to obesity.
Humans have eaten saturated fat for millennia without metabolic diseases. In the 20th century Americans have been eating less animal fat but hundreds of pounds of sugar. This correlates with increased obesity since 1970 when low-fat foods became popular.
Fat should be considered an energy food, but make sure it’s organic. Fat from animals grown in factory farms can contain insecticides, antibiotics, herbicides and other toxins. This is the fat to avoid. I eat lots of cheese from Ireland and local organic lamb. A true Mediterranean diet always included cheese.
Dr. Mary Enig, who first warned against trans-fats, says “Eat fat to lose fat”. She advises using coconut oil since, like other saturated fats, it’s stable and not prone to oxidation or forming dangerous free radicals.
You need to eat fat to produce the enzymes that burn body fat.

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A Twelve Step Program for Sugar Addicts Needed?

The great increase of diabetes and obesity during the past forty years is related to the huge increase in the amount of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup in our food and drink. It’s now over 150 pounds per person per year. Even artificial sweeteners prime you to want the feel-good chemicals created in your brain by sugar. Weight loss groups had concentrated on total calories instead of the addicting sugar. Fat consumption is self-limiting as your cells produce hormones that tell your brain to stop eating. Sugars raise insulin so you crave more sugar to get another sugar high.
Years ago when I suffered from anorexia and bulimia, I felt like an alcoholic. When I ate a candy bar, I told myself I would give them up forever so why not have another one now, then another. One was too much but never enough. Later, a high protein diet and fat helped me.
As mentioned in my book, Dr. Schwarzbein, doctors Rachael and Richard Heller, Dr. Rivas and psychologist Julia Ross talk about sugar addiction. Treatments range from high doses of certain amino acids to prescriptions to complete avoidance. The last is easier said than done. Now Dr.Mark Hyman in “The Blood Sugar Solution” says that sugar is a toxin that can cause a fatty liver just like alcohol. The combination of diabetes and obesity results in over 350 billion dollars in medical costs in America each year. He says that one-on-one coaching or else small group discussions can be the best way to help avoid sugars and refined carbohydrate foods
Maybe it’s time for Sugar-holics Anonymous.

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