Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Gary Taubes: "What Really Makes Us Fat"

Gary Taubes just wrote another opinion piece in The New York Times, this one analyzing the "calorie is a calorie" argument in relation to a recent clinical trial that shed new light on the discussion.

As always, Taubes takes a measured look at the facts and advocates good science, not personal beliefs.

The start of the "What Really Makes Us Fat":
"A calorie is a calorie. This truism has been the foundation of nutritional wisdom and our beliefs about obesity since the 1960s.

"What it means is that a calorie of protein will generate the same energy when metabolized in a living organism as a calorie of fat or carbohydrate. When talking about obesity or why we get fat, evoking the phrase 'a calorie is a calorie' is almost invariably used to imply that what we eat is relatively unimportant. We get fat because we take in more calories than we expend; we get lean if we do the opposite. Anyone who tells you otherwise, by this logic, is trying to sell you something.

"But not everyone buys this calorie argument, and the dispute erupted in full force again last week. The Journal of the American Medical Association published the results of a clinical trial by Dr. David Ludwig of Boston Children’s Hospital and his collaborators. While the media tended to treat the study as another diet trial — what should we eat to maintain weight loss? — it spoke to a far more fundamental issue: What actually causes obesity? Why do we get fat in the first place? Too many calories? Or something else?"
Click here to read the entire piece.

No comments: