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ATP / carb path / populist science

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  • ATP / carb path / populist science

    A recent commenter on another blog made a statement along the lines of: "Everyone knows the metabolic pathways and biochemistry involved, so why they continue to advocate carbs is beyond me." This made me curious enough to investigate further, but my lack of formal education and the limitations of my google-fu are bumping into a glass ceiling. Can anyone elaborate the "basics" that are not disputed by anyone which, if their implications are properly followed, inevitably lead to recommending carbohydrate restriction? I've read the Cliff's Notes of Good Calories, Bad Calories, but what I'm looking for is something more along the lines of what might be presented in a first year biochem class.

  • #2

    I'm not quite sure what Cliff's Notes you read, so I'll just start at the beginning, and you can pipe up with questions as we go to steer the discussion in the direction you are interested in.

    First year biochem involved lots and lots of drawing chemical structures by heart <Zzzzz> I&#39;ll spare you the details.

    The basic building blocks of biochemistry are the four groups main groups of macromolecules:

    1) Carbohydrates -- alcohols, sugars, and chains thereof

    2) Amino Acids -- which form proteins

    3) Nucleic Acids, which form things like DNA and RNA and ATP

    4) Lipids, which include fatty acids and "fat like" substances, including triacylglycerides, phospholipids, cholesterol, plasmalogens, wax, and more.

    These are the main actors in the metabolic pathways.

    Metabolism has a yin and a yang: catabolic processes (break components and molecules down, generally produces energy usually in the form of ATP or heat) and anabolic processes (build new components, generally requires energy).

    In biochemistry metabolic pathways are usually described using a very large amount of chemical structures and a very large number of arrows.

    Here is a small series of videos that explain some of the basic metabolic pathways that you might encounter in Biochemistry 101:

    Professor Fink Explains Cellular Respiration
    part 1
    part 2
    part 3
    part 4
    part 5
    part 6

    Also relevant to the discussion at hand:

    insulin&#39;s role in blood sugar regulation and synthesis of fat

    I would also highly recommend watching Sugar - The Bitter Truth for more details specific to the carbohydrate story.

    Like I said -- ask away to guide this in the direction most helpful to you!

    quette's journal


    • #3

      Watch the Gary Taubes video (just google Gary Taubes Dartmouth) or "Sugar: The Bitter Truth" (though the latter doesn&#39;t really explain why glucose is also bad, it is truly excellent).

      Uh, there is a lot that goes on... but if you have any specific questions feel free to ask. I don&#39;t feel like writing a super long biochemistry paper for you.

      But take note of:

      ASP (acylation stimulating protein)

      HSL (hormone sensitive lipase)

      becasue those two are involves in how we temporarily store fat without insulin.

      Hyperlipid blog is also a good resource.

      Or better yet, just read GCBC.

      Good for you for wanting to know the mechanics!!

      Let me know if you want me to find links for you... it is pretty easy to find everything via a Google search.


      • #4

        I was supposed to go hangout with some buddies tonight... and you guys just had to point me in the direction of sugar: the bitter truth.

        Definitely a great video, probably worth missing a night out with the friends haha

        In Pursuit of Healthiness, Only to Achieve Happiness!:


        • #5

          I&#39;m currently reading "Good Calories Bad Calories" and always joke to my husband that I want the Cliff&#39;s notes version. So frogfarm, tell me where you found a condensed, boiled down version. I just want the bottom line.


          • #6

            Poundcake: Charles Washington at ZIOH summarized each chapter of GCBC when his forum was discussing it, and Danny Roddy has a master post linking to everything except the epilogue:


            Though I keep hearing that Gary&#39;s next book will be "GCBC for Dummies". Seriously.

            Groquette: Thanks, I&#39;m working my way through Professor Fink&#39;s respiration videos now. Hopefully that will lead me toward asking the next logical questions!