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"Good Calories, Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes

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  • "Good Calories, Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes

    I just started reading this book and wondering if anyone else has started it or read it before. I think so far it's been really interesting to learn about the paradigm shift in scientific dietary guidelines (fats are bad, grains are good) has increased obesity and Type II diabetes.

    If you don't know what it's about here's a blurb from Publisher's Weekly:
    Taubes's eye-opening challenge to widely accepted ideas on nutrition and weight loss is as provocative as was his 2001 NewYork Times Magazine article, What if It's All a Big Fat Lie? Taubes (Bad Science), a writer for Science magazine, begins by showing how public health data has been misinterpreted to mark dietary fat and cholesterol as the primary causes of coronary heart disease. Deeper examination, he says, shows that heart disease and other diseases of civilization appear to result from increased consumption of refined carbohydrates: sugar, white flour and white rice. When researcher John Yudkin announced these results in the 1950s, however, he was drowned out by the conventional wisdom. Taubes cites clinical evidence showing that elevated triglyceride levels, rather than high total cholesterol, are associated with increased risk of heart disease-but measuring triglycerides is more difficult than measuring cholesterol. Taubes says that the current U.S. obesity epidemic actually consists of a very small increase in the average body mass index. Taube's arguments are lucid and well supported by lengthy notes and bibliography. His call for dietary advice that is based on rigorous science, not century-old preconceptions about the penalties of gluttony and sloth is bound to be echoed loudly by many readers.

    Thoughts?
    Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

  • #2
    Here are a couple of previous threads on the book that you might enjoy checking out...

    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...=good+calories

    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...=good+calories
    For lots of tasty recipes, check out my blog -http://lifeasadreger.wordpress.com/

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    • #3
      Thanks I didn't see those!
      Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

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      • #4
        He also has a new book out...an easier read than GCBC called Why We Get Fat. My copy shipped from amazon yesterday! (And I've read GCBC as well)
        Heather and the hounds - Make a Fast Friend, Adopt a Greyhound!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by kennelmom View Post
          He also has a new book out...an easier read than GCBC called Why We Get Fat. My copy shipped from amazon yesterday! (And I've read GCBC as well)
          Yeah I must admit some of the technicalities of this book remind me of Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma" (especially the corn section) but let me know how "WWGF" is. I was looking for both of them but they only had "BCGC" at my Barnes & Noble.

          GCBC gets referenced a lot by the man who did the documentary "Fathead" (which is on hulu now) in response to "Supersize Me" not sure if anyone else has seen it but although I don't agree with his methods he proved a point by keeping his carbs under 100g when the average American is apparently eating 300g-400g a day.

          And I'll stop going off on a tangent now
          Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

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          • #6
            I'm about halfway through GCBC. It's an interesting but frustrating read. I enjoy the technicalities, even though it slows down the read somewhat. It's the constant re-stating of the same points that is driving me nuts. Given that the theory "obese people are fat because they're lazy and gluttonous" is the conventional wisdom, he doesn't need to keep re-stating it or re-phrasing it every time he's coming up with a counter-theory. I think the book could have used a really good editor who had the force of character to say to the author that some of his clever phrasings were unnecessary and should be tossed. Let's hope that happened with his new one.
            Liz.

            Zone diet on and off for several years....worked, but too much focus on exact meal composition
            Primal since July 2010...skinniest I've ever been and the least stressed about food

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            • #7
              I read Taubes before I even came to this site a year and a half ago, and I own his book. It's well worth owning because he's right, and he gives you a good comeback argument for every CW myth (and backs up every argument with scientific evidence).
              Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

              Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


              Ditch the scale!: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread33283.html

              My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

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              • #8
                Originally posted by lizch View Post
                I'm about halfway through GCBC. It's an interesting but frustrating read. I enjoy the technicalities, even though it slows down the read somewhat. It's the constant re-stating of the same points that is driving me nuts. Given that the theory "obese people are fat because they're lazy and gluttonous" is the conventional wisdom, he doesn't need to keep re-stating it or re-phrasing it every time he's coming up with a counter-theory. I think the book could have used a really good editor who had the force of character to say to the author that some of his clever phrasings were unnecessary and should be tossed. Let's hope that happened with his new one.
                Actually, the way you describe his writing (which is accurate) is the way academics write generally. His new book is written for the layman and probably won't do that, but when you're writing to other academics, redundancy and repetition of important points is the standard way to write.
                Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

                Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


                Ditch the scale!: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread33283.html

                My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Griff View Post
                  Actually, the way you describe his writing (which is accurate) is the way academics write generally. His new book is written for the layman and probably won't do that, but when you're writing to other academics, redundancy and repetition of important points is the standard way to write.
                  Thanks Griff...interesting! You'd really think academics could keep the salient points in their brains without needing re-prompting every paragraph. Yet another thing to add to my list of "things I will fix when I'm supreme ruler"
                  Liz.

                  Zone diet on and off for several years....worked, but too much focus on exact meal composition
                  Primal since July 2010...skinniest I've ever been and the least stressed about food

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                  • #10
                    The most frustrating thing about GCBC is how I can only remember half of it.
                    The Primal Journey of Mr and Mrs Fist
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by lizch View Post
                      Thanks Griff...interesting! You'd really think academics could keep the salient points in their brains without needing re-prompting every paragraph. Yet another thing to add to my list of "things I will fix when I'm supreme ruler"
                      Supreme ruler or not, you'll never be successful at changing academic culture. People have been trying since the Dark Ages; it's never worked yet.
                      Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

                      Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


                      Ditch the scale!: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread33283.html

                      My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Taubes was on liberal elitist anti-real 'merica NPR today.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by lizch View Post
                          I'm about halfway through GCBC. It's an interesting but frustrating read. I enjoy the technicalities, even though it slows down the read somewhat. It's the constant re-stating of the same points that is driving me nuts. Given that the theory "obese people are fat because they're lazy and gluttonous" is the conventional wisdom, he doesn't need to keep re-stating it or re-phrasing it every time he's coming up with a counter-theory. I think the book could have used a really good editor who had the force of character to say to the author that some of his clever phrasings were unnecessary and should be tossed. Let's hope that happened with his new one.
                          Yeah I agree I am normally a very fast reader and I find myself rereading passages to try and commit to memory some of the many studies/articles he references. On the plus side this is a book that will last me more than 2 days! And I will definitely be getting his new book in addition.
                          Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Griff View Post
                            Actually, the way you describe his writing (which is accurate) is the way academics write generally. His new book is written for the layman and probably won't do that, but when you're writing to other academics, redundancy and repetition of important points is the standard way to write.
                            Griff yes you are right. His book basically reads like a scienctific journal. You might want to check out his lecture online too Lizch.

                            http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...1487661765149#
                            Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by DarthFriendly View Post
                              Taubes was on liberal elitist anti-real 'merica NPR today.
                              Not sure what this has to do with his book....but okay.

                              I enjoy NPR and Ira Glass on "This American Life" which is not elitist at all.

                              Can you recommend any books? I want to read "The Vegetarian Myth" after Taubes
                              Silly rabbit, grains are for birds.

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