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"Calories in / Calories Out" -- Please Stop the Madness

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  • Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
    The CICO camp would say that what is eaten matters in 2 ways: eating industrial oils and refined sugars and grains are not optimal for health, but do not contribute to overweight except when consumed to excess. The Alternative Theory camp would say that what is eaten matters in another way, by damaging numerous functions of the endocrine system even when not consumed in excess of caloric need, e.g., industrial oils (even if eaten below daily caloric need) can damage insulin receptors and lead to insulin resistance, or someone who already has insulin resistance who consumes refined sugars and grains (even if eaten below daily caloric need) can trigger the secretion of excess insulin that then further damages cells (leading to myriad and usually related "common soil" diseases).
    You're dead on.
    The Champagne of Beards

    Comment


    • I do not presume to speak for the whole CICO camp, whatever it might be, but I can put forward my own views :-)

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      Seems to me that both the CICO camp and the Alternative Theory camp accept that calories matter, and that BMR/RMR is part of the equation. Both would accept, I think, that the rate at which individuals burn calories can vary due to differences in endocrine response, and neurotransmitters like serotonin.
      Sure, no problem.

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      Correct me if I am wrong, but my take is that the CICO camp would accept that BMR/RMR can be altered by changing one's pattern of exercise, e.g.: a couch potato who starts working out can effect a higher BMR/RMR. But the CICO camp does not accept that changes to how much energy one burns can be affected through what is eaten (rather than how much), hence a calorie is a calorie
      Nope. A calorie is a calorie, it's a physical unit of energy. But "how much energy one burns" depends on great many things, including genetics, age, exercise, how much one eats, what one eats, the temperature of the environment, etc. etc. I would agree without any reservations that you can affect your energy output through manipulating what you eat.

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      excess caloric intake over waste excreted and physical exertion (including basal metabolism) necessarily is the ONLY way one puts on weight.
      Not exactly -- not excess energy intake over BMR+exercise, but excess energy intake over total energy spend is the ONLY way one puts on weight (again, we're ignoring things like water here).

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      The Alternative Theory camp says that what is eaten can change the endocrine response and neurotransmitter uptake, so that BMR/RMR is not a fixed entity, or changeable only through non-food lifestyle alterations such as exercise, meaning that CICO calculations involve an entity that is in their description a dependent variable, rather the way octane rating can affect mileage, or putting sugar cubes into the gasoline supply can wreck an engine entirely.
      Sure, I agree, no problems.

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      The CICO camp would say that what is eaten matters in 2 ways: eating industrial oils and refined sugars and grains are not optimal for health, but do not contribute to overweight except when consumed to excess.
      If "excess" is defined as "positive energy balance" then yes, if you consume less energy than you spend, you will not gain weight regardless of what this energy is packed in.

      Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
      The Alternative Theory camp would say that what is eaten matters in another way, by damaging numerous functions of the endocrine system even when not consumed in excess of caloric need, e.g., industrial oils (even if eaten below daily caloric need) can damage insulin receptors and lead to insulin resistance, or someone who already has insulin resistance who consumes refined sugars and grains (even if eaten below daily caloric need) can trigger the secretion of excess insulin that then further damages cells (leading to myriad and usually related "common soil" diseases).
      Sure, maybe, possibly, we're getting into complex and individualized matters here.

      But I don't see how that's opposed to CICO -- CICO makes no claims as to what's good for your health and what's not. It might very well be that eating SAD leads to insulin resistance, but I don't think CICO has anything to do with this.


      To summarize, CICO (in my understanding of it) makes very strong but limited claims. The strong claim is that for the matter of gaining or losing weight (but NOT overall health, NOT body composition) the only thing that matters is the sign of your energy balance. If the balance is positive, you consume more energy than you output, you will gain weigth. If the balance is negative, you spend more energy than you consume, you will lose weight.

      It is a very strong claim because it says that the ONLY way to gain (or lose) weight is to be in positive (or negative) energy balance, *and* being in positive (or negative) energy balance will ALWAYS lead to gaining (or losing) weight.

      This strong claim is quite limited, however. CICO does NOT say anything about what's optimal for health. It does NOT say anything about body (re)composition and preferentially burning fat. It does NOT say anything about what drives energy inputs and outputs. It does NOT claim that energy input and output are independent of each other. It does NOT say that the output is fixed and only the input calories matter.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
        I do not presume to speak for the whole CICO camp, whatever it might be, but I can put forward my own views :-)



        Sure, no problem.



        Nope. A calorie is a calorie, it's a physical unit of energy. But "how much energy one burns" depends on great many things, including genetics, age, exercise, how much one eats, what one eats, the temperature of the environment, etc. etc. I would agree without any reservations that you can affect your energy output through manipulating what you eat.



        Not exactly -- not excess energy intake over BMR+exercise, but excess energy intake over total energy spend is the ONLY way one puts on weight (again, we're ignoring things like water here).



        Sure, I agree, no problems.



        If "excess" is defined as "positive energy balance" then yes, if you consume less energy than you spend, you will not gain weight regardless of what this energy is packed in.



        Sure, maybe, possibly, we're getting into complex and individualized matters here.

        But I don't see how that's opposed to CICO -- CICO makes no claims as to what's good for your health and what's not. It might very well be that eating SAD leads to insulin resistance, but I don't think CICO has anything to do with this.


        To summarize, CICO (in my understanding of it) makes very strong but limited claims. The strong claim is that for the matter of gaining or losing weight (but NOT overall health, NOT body composition) the only thing that matters is the sign of your energy balance. If the balance is positive, you consume more energy than you output, you will gain weigth. If the balance is negative, you spend more energy than you consume, you will lose weight.

        It is a very strong claim because it says that the ONLY way to gain (or lose) weight is to be in positive (or negative) energy balance, *and* being in positive (or negative) energy balance will ALWAYS lead to gaining (or losing) weight.

        This strong claim is quite limited, however. CICO does NOT say anything about what's optimal for health. It does NOT say anything about body (re)composition and preferentially burning fat. It does NOT say anything about what drives energy inputs and outputs. It does NOT claim that energy input and output are independent of each other. It does NOT say that the output is fixed and only the input calories matter.
        When pressed, CICO adherents always claim that CICO=FLT (First Law of Thermodynamics).

        Then, they go around telling people "because CICO describes weight gain or loss, simply manipulating these variables is the only strategy/best strategy to achieve weight loss"

        It's an unfounded logical leap. It ignores cause and effect. It ignores hormones, organs, feedback loops, and all kinds of complicated wizardry that goes on in the human body.

        As I've said, the Alternative Hypothesis doesn't presuppose any suspension of Newtonian physics. It just doesn't view people as simple calorimeters. The Alternative Hypothesis is that the variables are dependent.

        CICO as prescription presupposes that they are not.

        Again, NOBODY with half a brain believes that you can gain weight in a calorie deficit or lose weight in a calorie surplus. That's like saying a circle is square, or that up is down. What's contended is the cause. Do we store fat because we eat more, or do we eat more because we have upregulated fat storage via complex and only partly understood mechanisms? That's CICO vs. Alternative Hypothesis.
        The Champagne of Beards

        Comment


        • Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
          When pressed, CICO adherents always claim that CICO=FLT (First Law of Thermodynamics).

          Then, they go around telling people "because CICO describes weight gain or loss, simply manipulating these variables is the only strategy/best strategy to achieve weight loss"

          It's an unfounded logical leap. It ignores cause and effect. It ignores hormones, organs, feedback loops, and all kinds of complicated wizardry that goes on in the human body.
          You are continuing pulling straw-men out of a certain private body part, where the light of reason has no access, and the sun never shines?!
          "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

          - Schopenhauer

          Comment


          • Originally posted by KimchiNinja View Post
            Peter is smart. His new organization to TEST some of the same theories I posted above is about the most exciting thing happening in nutrition. What else is happening? Everyone else seems to be barking up the wrong tree.

            Plus he has some cool slides, in this one if you invert the change in the American diet since the 1960s, it becomes primal. Again proving my theory "do exactly opposite of what the Americans are doing".

            http://nusi.org/wp-content/uploads/2...6_slide-61.png
            I will check out his site. Seems interesting. I am pretty certain for me that I ate way less calories and did more exercise to lose less weight on CW diet. followed by instant relapse. The Zone done strictly worked the best for me and I maintained for over 2 years. I didn't have the support and ideas at the time of full fat cooking, and I suddenly felt ill on it, now I know that my thyroid likely tanked. I am really really hoping that this time I have found the right diet for me. ) It will be pretty impossible to go back as allergies reared their ugly head and I just can't eat the same without tough consequences.
            Started Primal June 2012 at 148.5lbs, and 5' 1", reached goal weight in 5 months.
            Lowest weight 93lbs - too thin. Now stable at around 100lbs much better weight for me at my age.
            Primal, minus eggs, dairy and a myriad of other allergens.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
              You are continuing pulling straw-men out of a certain private body part, where the light of reason has no access, and the sun never shines?!
              Sorry, but this is BS. The straw man is the claim that the Alternative Hypothesis denies the First Law of Thermodynamics.
              The Champagne of Beards

              Comment


              • Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                Then, they go around telling people "because CICO describes weight gain or loss, simply manipulating these variables is the only strategy/best strategy to achieve weight loss"
                You haven't been paying much attention :-P

                Yes, manipulating your energy input and/or output is the only strategy to achieve weight loss.

                The trick is that there are many, many ways to manipulate your energy balance. Including your favorite way of adjusting the content of your diet, *what* you eat.

                You are assuming a strawman which says "the only way to manipulate the energy balance is to count calories and restrict the input". That's a pure strawman, CICO does not claim this.

                Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                The Alternative Hypothesis is that the variables are dependent.
                As you might have noticed in my post that you're replying to, I agree with that.

                Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                CICO as prescription presupposes that they are not.
                That is... an incorrect claim.

                Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                Again, NOBODY with half a brain believes that you can gain weight in a calorie deficit or lose weight in a calorie surplus. That's like saying a circle is square, or that up is down.
                Again, I can quote you people in this very thread who say so :-D

                Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                What's contended is the cause.
                Which one is the cause? The causality chain is long, we can extend it as far back as we want. Any particular reason you want to stop at the hormonal regulation? It has its causes, too, and those have their causes...
                Last edited by Lumifer; 04-05-2013, 09:23 AM.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  You haven't been paying much attention :-P
                  Or I'm the only one who has :-P right back at ya.

                  [quote=Lumifer;1149922]Yes, manipulating your energy input and/or output is the only strategy to achieve weight loss.

                  Yes, this is where CICO and Alternative Hypothesis agree...

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  The trick is that there are many, many ways to manipulate your energy balance. Including your favorite way of adjusting the content of your diet, *what* you eat.
                  So you want to agree with the content of the Alternative Hypothesis but claim to be a supporter of CICO?

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  You are assuming a strawman which says "the only way to manipulate the energy balance is to count calories and restrict the input". That's a pure strawman, CICO does not claim this.
                  I've been very careful to distinguish between calling the First Law of Thermodynamics "CICO" and "CICO as a prescription/dogma" The adherents of CICO love the confusion. It allows them to make unsupported claims and then claim that those who disagree are invoking magic.

                  You're basically agreeing with the alternative hypothesis and arguing for the FLT (which nobody in their right mind is disputing)

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  As you might have noticed in my post that you're replying to, I agree with
                  Yeah, you agree with me but just love arguing about it.

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  That is... an incorrect claim.
                  No, it isn't

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  Again, I can quote you people in this very thread who say so :-D
                  If you're talking about the original post, I took that as being facetious. Nobody except a lunatic thinks that CICO doesn't describe what happens when someone loses or gains weight (or doesn't).

                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  Which one is the cause? The causality chain is long, we can extend it as far back as we want. Any particular reason you want to stop at the hormonal regulation? It has its causes, too, and those have their causes...
                  Again, now you're arguing for the Alternative Hypothesis. Make up your mind.

                  Sure, we could trace it all the way back to the Big Bang if we really wanted to. I'm not that good a physicist (I'm not one at all), but theoretically, you could say "Your thighs are fat because of the Big Bang" and it may be accurate. But not useful. CICO is accurate, it's just not useful, because of dependent variables and confounders, among which is the fact that the adipose tissue is an endocrine organ and the body is a complicated place. Why are you trying to find nits to pick with my argument, which you seemingly agree with?
                  The Champagne of Beards

                  Comment


                  • The fact that this thread continued past this post is either very funny or deeply sad... I'm not sure which.

                    Comment


                    • Some interesting distinctions, Lumifer. I need to re-read, but it almost sounds as though you are saying the Alternative Hypothesis does not contradict CICO, but rather subsumes it.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                        ...now you're arguing for the Alternative Hypothesis. Make up your mind.
                        I am sorry, I am really bad at fitting into pigeonholes :-P

                        You have a idea in your mind which you call CICO and you're trying to make my views match it. It doesn't look like they match well. Try ignoring labels for a bit and *read* my post without preconceived notions of what I must be saying.

                        Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                        CICO is accurate, it's just not useful
                        Ah. :-) It's a good thing it's accurate, then. Usefulness is really in the mind of the beholder...

                        Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                        Why are you trying to find nits to pick with my argument, which you seemingly agree with?
                        Because you keep saying silly things and keep telling me I'm wrong :-P

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Finnegans Wake View Post
                          Some interesting distinctions, Lumifer. I need to re-read, but it almost sounds as though you are saying the Alternative Hypothesis does not contradict CICO, but rather subsumes it.
                          Yep, that would be a fair way to put it.

                          You just need to remember that the underlying layer of CICO is still true, always -- and some people (who RichMahogany says don't exist) tend to forget this...

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by boomingno View Post
                            The fact that this thread continued past this post is either very funny or deeply sad... I'm not sure which.
                            Yep, but mostly funny IMO, similar to those that still believes in the geocentric worldview, the flat earth society, or that the moon is made of cheese etc…
                            "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

                            - Schopenhauer

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by boomingno View Post
                              The fact that this thread continued past this post is either very funny or deeply sad... I'm not sure which.
                              Very good link.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                                I am sorry, I am really bad at fitting into pigeonholes :-P

                                You have a idea in your mind which you call CICO and you're trying to make my views match it. It doesn't look like they match well. Try ignoring labels for a bit and *read* my post without preconceived notions of what I must be saying.

                                Ah. :-) It's a good thing it's accurate, then. Usefulness is really in the mind of the beholder...

                                Because you keep saying silly things and keep telling me I'm wrong :-P
                                Usefulness isn't in the mind of the beholder when we're trying to accomplish a specific goal, which, in this case is strongly implied to be the normalization of a person's weight.

                                You admit freely that there are different ways of manipulating energy balance. The one commonly referred to as CICO says "eat less+move around more=lose weight." The Alternative says "fix the broken fat storage-regulation machinery, then (assuming you're overfat), you'll eat less and/or move around more = lose weight."

                                We can debate whether which is easier is relevant, and whether either would technically work in a forced experiment (sure they would). But for populations of live, actual humans running around in the actual, real world, I find it hard to believe that you wouldn't agree that the latter is more likely to have a widespread positive effect. Especially in light of the past 40+ years of evidence.

                                Now, tell me if we disagree, or if you insist on continuing to use the term "CICO" with a meaning other than its commonly accepted use just for the sake of argument. Good talk.
                                The Champagne of Beards

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