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

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  • Originally posted by magicmerl View Post
    Yeah, no. Your qualitative descriptions are for the most part wrong.

    I think that the person who pointed out that CICO was true but meaningless for people seeking health / weight loss had it correct.
    And so 1) specifically how are my qualitative decriptions wrong, and 2) if CICO is meaningless, which it is, then what is the meaningful formula?

    I'm guessing you have no idea to both 1 and 2.

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    • When you actually think about it (not saying people actually think, but if they did), isn't "calories in / calories out" really just propaganda? And effective propaganda in that it is "science".

      It sounds nice, but really doesn't mean anything.

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      • Originally posted by AdamK View Post
        Hi CICO-ers and Alt-Hyp-ers alike,

        Greetings and good morning.

        So FYI, I drew up a little cartoon about the rats that starved to death obese (so much for CICO for them) here. Check it out. Enjoy the funny!

        Also, I have a quick N=1 experiment that could solve this whole situation. Someone from Team CICO who is passionate that "a calorie is a calorie" should go on a calorie restricted, mostly liquid sucrose diet for 3 months. Exercise as much as you want. Keep calories "low." Do whatever magic you want. But make sure to consume mostly liquid sucrose - like 70% of calories. That's way above and beyond what the Twinkie Diet guy (Mark Haub - actually a very nice dude - we've spoken) did in his little n=1 a few years back.

        The reason this would be helpful is that it would effectively separate the two hypotheses. Because when you cut calories (on any normal diet), you lower carbs/improve carbs and thereby secrete less insulin (among other things). Even Haub's Twinkie Diet could be seen as a poor man's version of a lower/better carb/insulin diet, as Tom Naughton pointed out on his blog about that n=1.

        The Mountain Dew Diet, on the other hand, (what I'm proposing) would absolutely lead to increased insulin secretion but decreased calorie consumption. It would be much more orthogonal. You'd have to track cals carefully, of course!

        So that's my challenge. "Do the Dew" for 3 months -- 70-80% of calories from liquid sugar and keep calories LOW -- and see whether you gain or lose fat.

        I'd bet you'd gain serious fat, even if you forced yourself to go to the gym AND starved yourself, because cals would be shunted into the fat tissue no matter what. So your BMR would plunge (you'd have no energy) and you'd start to catabolize muscle and organ tissue to meet the energy deficit instead of fat. but that's just my guess.

        Adam
        Excellent post.

        I'd bet they'd get serious fat too, and a massive decrease in stable long-term energy, just a bunch of spiky sugar rushes, and crashes, with fat accumulation piling on every day, and with muscle loss tossed in to make it ever better!

        Basically the American experience, but amplified.

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        • Originally posted by Zach View Post
          I dont understand how anyone can believe that carbohydrates alone cause insulin resistance. I know in this little primal bubble, it seem like low carb is the majority but in the real world, a high carb diet consisting of 50% calories from carbohydrates is the vast majority. Entire countries that contain most of the worlds population eat this way with out any sign of insulin resistance or obesity.
          I can explain, and will.

          These tribes did not have high sugar and white flour consumption. Once sugar was introduced they were screwd, every single time. Once screwed they can't necessarily go back to their "healthy" carb ways. It's not just the amount of carbs, it's about the speed of the carbs.

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          • Originally posted by KimchiNinja View Post
            I can explain, and will.

            These tribes did not have high sugar and white flour consumption. Once sugar was introduced they were screwd, every single time. Once screwed they can't necessarily go back to their "healthy" carb ways. It's not just the amount of carbs, it's about the speed of the carbs.
            I get what you're saying from a personal perspective, but might I suggest you use the word "quality" over the word "speed"?

            I mean who could logically argue with this statement:

            "Sweet potatoes are a more quality source of carbs than wheat."

            Even most high carb eaters would have to reluctantly agree if they looked at the facts.
            "The cling and a clang is the metal in my head when I walk. I hear a sort of, this tinging noise - cling clang. The cling clang. So many things happen while walking. The metal in my head clangs and clings as I walk - freaks my balance out. So the natural thought is just clogged up. Totally clogged up. So we need to unplug these dams, and make the the natural flow... It sort of freaks me out. We need to unplug the dams. You cannot stop the natural flow of thought with a cling and a clang..."

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            • Originally posted by KimchiNinja View Post
              Once screwed they can't necessarily go back to their "healthy" carb ways.
              Actually, they can. There's been countless of people losing weight and coming off diabetes medication following high carb or traditional diets.
              To Preserve Their Health and Heritage, Arizona Indians Reclaim Ancient Foods - New York Times

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              • Originally posted by ChocoTaco369 View Post
                So if a person no longer has a healthy metabolism calories don't matter? It's always calories in/calories out regardless of your "metabolism." People that struggle losing weight simply can't undereat their hunger. That doesn't mean CICO no longer exists. It means you better fix your thyroid, adrenals, nutrient deficiencies or fix whatever other problem you have so you can manage a deficit for weight loss.

                The "broken metabolism" excuse is just that - an excuse. Metabolisms don't "break." If your metabolism is broken, you're dead.
                You keep repeating this over and over, so what relevance does it have when every individuals calculation is different?

                Yes, technically CICO does work if you can identify all the variables, but cannot be applied in the real world because we don't know all the variables and along with that the variables keep changing within an individual as the body adjusts itself to the environment it is subjected to.

                It can only ever be used as a rough guideline to give someone a visual understanding of their caloric consumption, but can in no way be used as the fallback rule in all weightloss scenarios.
                "There are no short cuts to enlightenment, the journey is the destination, you have to walk this path alone"

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                • Originally posted by Forgotmylastusername View Post
                  Actually, they can. There's been countless of people losing weight and coming off diabetes medication following high carb or traditional diets.
                  To Preserve Their Health and Heritage, Arizona Indians Reclaim Ancient Foods - New York Times
                  Right, some people stopped eating sugar/processed food and started eating better sources of carbohydrates and had some results (although I don't actually see the results discussed). That's what we are talking about, that's great. And the article specifically goes into insulin and the "speed" of the carb, which has increased in modern times (which is outside of CICO).

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                  • Drinking my coffee, expanding some thoughts on how "calories in / calories out" is more accurately though of as propaganda than science...

                    Question: Let's ask the question, who does the propaganda benefit? And thus who would be most interested in spreading it? We are practicing "follow the money trail" which is always a useful analytical technique when studying the United States.

                    Answer: It benefits the fitness industry, increased profits. It benefits the sugar/agriculture industry, defense to existing massive profits. It benefits the low-calorie food market, creates a new sub-category of products. It benefits the drug companies, the doctors, etc. It doesn't particularly benefit humanity, but we aren't supposed to notice that part because we are only looking at profit, destruction of human healthy is an "externality".

                    On the other hand how does the alternative hypothesis increase profit? Well if sugar/white flour raises insulin which drives fat, it hurts the sugar/agriculture industry, duh. It hurts the fitness industry, because all that frantic jumping around is pointless. And it hurts the low-calorie food market, since calories isn't specifically the problem.

                    Thus CICO drives action, "go buy stuff". But the alternative hypothesis drives inaction, it is the absence of purchasing sugar and the absence of exercise, while perhaps solving the obesity epidemic. If the alt-hypothesis is true, it is the enemy of industry, thus the conflict of interests; human health vs industry profit.

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                    • Originally posted by Omni View Post
                      Yes, technically CICO does work if you can identify all the variables, but cannot be applied in the real world because we don't know all the variables and along with that the variables keep changing within an individual as the body adjusts itself to the environment it is subjected to.
                      CICO can always be applied to the real world. People fail because they don't track their food intake properly and they use some general TDEE equation that is meant for the "average" person. People quite often miscalculate their activity level as well. Taking a 2-3 mile walk a couple times a week does not make you moderately active - it makes you lightly active. Deadlifting, squatting and benchpressing 3-4 times a week along with some moderate cardio makes you moderately active. That is far above what the typical person on this site is doing.

                      You find out your TDEE by experimentation. Eat 1,700 calories every day for a week. If you don't lose weight, drop it to 1,600 calories. If you don't lose weight, drop it to 1,500 calories. It may take a few months before you dial it in. Most people that claim CICO "doesn't work" don't put forth the time and effort to track their food intake properly or track their TDEE properly. Don't use some general equation from a website, assume your activity level, loosely track your portions and complain when it "doesn't work." People fail the system, the system never fails because CICO is absolute.
                      Don't put your trust in anyone on this forum, including me. You are the key to your own success.

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                      • We're about to get nuked and you guys are still talking about calories in and calories out
                        Make America Great Again

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                        • Originally posted by Derpamix View Post
                          We're about to get nuked and you guys are still talking about calories in and calories out
                          Srsly guys, srsly.

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                          • Derp and Zach - seriously we are only up to page 39................ couldn't we just drag this out for another 30 ?????????
                            "never let the truth get in the way of a good story "

                            ...small steps....

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                            • Originally posted by NZ primal Gwamma View Post
                              Derp and Zach - seriously we are only up to page 39................ couldn't we just drag this out for another 30 ?????????
                              I think these posts have been repeated for the last 35, it's like automated by now.
                              Make America Great Again

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                              • p-u-h-l-e-a-z-e
                                "never let the truth get in the way of a good story "

                                ...small steps....

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