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Why Asian Rice Diets Do Not Cause Degenerative Diseases?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Apex Predator View Post
    Macro-nutrient neutrality means it's not fat or carbs that are the problem. It's the toxins, whether that is gluten with the bad carbs, or O6 with the bad fat. Or the constantly elevated BG from eating all the time. Etc. Anyway, if you read around the paleosphere enough, the people who eat healthy carbs tend to have lower FBG (often low 70's) than those who are VLC (often high 80's to 90's- though some have gotten way higher). Of course there are exceptions, and there are co-factors. But just eating carbs won't give you high FBG. Toxins which limit your body's ability to regulate your FBG are the issue.
    Apex, are you saying people who ingest a meal where rice is a large percentage of the calories don't get a blood glucose above 90? Seems very hard to believe that. My question is pretty specific to Asian rice diets, so I would like to narrow your reference to "healthy carbs" to the ones I am studying.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by westes View Post
      Apex, are you saying people who ingest a meal where rice is a large percentage of the calories don't get a blood glucose above 90? Seems very hard to believe that. My question is pretty specific to Asian rice diets, so I would like to narrow your reference to "healthy carbs" to the ones I am studying.
      If you are talking about "traditional" asian diets, they are just above starvation for the most part, with very high levels of activity. There's also no one traditional asian diet, depending on how far back and where you want to go, they may not have even eaten rice. So your questions is insanely vague and unanswerable if you want it answered "narrowly". So I responded with information on people on whom we have evidence for.
      Lifting Journal

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Apex Predator View Post
        If you are talking about "traditional" asian diets, they are just above starvation for the most part, with very high levels of activity. There's also no one traditional asian diet, depending on how far back and where you want to go, they may not have even eaten rice. So your questions is insanely vague and unanswerable if you want it answered "narrowly". So I responded with information on people on whom we have evidence for.
        The point on total calories being near a starvation level is a fantastic point. It certainly gives me an idea to research around, thanks.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by westes View Post
          I don't understand your point.
          Excuse me, not begging the question, denying the antecedent. Which degenerative western diseases are you referring to? Diabetes, metabolic syndrome, alzheimers, parkinsons, etc? They have it all. Your contraposition of "not seem to suffer from degenerative Western diseases" is simply not true.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by westes View Post
            MagicMerl, I accept that wheat is inflammatory and has autoimmune issues. But I also thought that a major part of Paleo was a low carbohydrate diet, because of the damage caused by high glucose and insulin. The Asian result seems to contradict that.

            Does anyone have statistics on what percentage of calories comes from carbohydrates (of all kinds) in a traditional Asian diet that avoids Western processed foods?
            I thought that paleo was low carb too when I first got into it. But I've since realised that for me at least it's really not. It's about eating your three macronutrient groups in approximate balance with each other (1/3 fat, 1/3 protein, 1/3 carbs) rather than eating a diet dominated by carbs (i.e. a conventional diet). Insulin isn't the evil enemy. Too much insulin is. You want your insulin to be hormonally balanced by glucagon, not swamping your system with so much insulin you head down the road to diabetes-ville (and all of the other attendant health issues associated with too much insulin).

            I recommend you read Denise Minger's most excellent rebuttal of the china study. It takes a while to read it all, but it's worth it. It doesn't explain the 'Why' that you are after in your OP. But I think it provides reasonably good (observational) evidence that rice isn't correlated with increased mortality.
            Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

            Griff's cholesterol primer
            5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
            Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
            TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
            bloodorchid is always right

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            • #21
              Everyone looks at the rice in the asian diet but fails to look at the other things that provide great health benefits. The japanese eat a ton of seaweed which provides a whole lot of micronutrients that most western diets never see. They also eat lots of fatty fish which provides fat soluble vitamins that the common western diet never sees. They are already set up to be able to eat some carbs because they don't destroy the healthy mechanisms in their bodies.
              Check out my primal blog: http://primalroar.posterous.com/

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              • #22
                Again some carb phobia saying different things but in the end the answer is this:

                Carbs are not bad for you, and people still don't seem to understand that. There are less of these people than before, but there still are people who will get mad at you for having a piece of fruit because they think it is bad.

                Yes, there are probably some who can't have fruit for whatever reasons; but fruit and carbs (rice, potatoes) are not bad for you. The idea of paleo/primal is not low-carb, and some have made people think that. The idea is eating natural like our ancestors used to eat and the idea is good health. If there was rice, they would eat rice. They had a mix of different things that gave them maximum nutrition, along with energy.

                Ketosis is a survival adaptation and is not considered healthy longterm. Just sayin'. Flame away.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Einz View Post
                  Again some carb phobia saying different things but in the end the answer is this:

                  Carbs are not bad for you, and people still don't seem to understand that. There are less of these people than before, but there still are people who will get mad at you for having a piece of fruit because they think it is bad.

                  Yes, there are probably some who can't have fruit for whatever reasons; but fruit and carbs (rice, potatoes) are not bad for you. The idea of paleo/primal is not low-carb, and some have made people think that. The idea is eating natural like our ancestors used to eat and the idea is good health. If there was rice, they would eat rice. They had a mix of different things that gave them maximum nutrition, along with energy.
                  Blood Sugar 101

                  Originally posted by Einz View Post
                  Ketosis is a survival adaptation and is not considered healthy longterm. Just sayin'. Flame away.
                  Couldn't the same thing be said about glycolysis?

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                  • #24
                    I believe that people in different sections of the world can have a vastly different diet and maintain optimal health. There's no magic diet for all.

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                    • #25
                      The problem is Einz that statements like yours are fuzzy, feel-good statements that appear to say "Eat whatever you want and whenever you want, no problem, any food, any time." That kind of nihilism leads to a place where eating Paleo means exactly nothing. At some point you have to make positive statements about what Paleo actually does mean.

                      No one said "carbs are bad for you." The question is whether diets loaded with *high-glycemic* foods are statistically associated with degenerative diseases (e.g., heart disease, diabetes, weight gains, cancer, etc). The absence of high gylcemic foods in a diet doesn't make it a low carb diet. You can eat a well balanced diet with 35% carbohydrates from leafy green vegetables and fruits and other carbohydrates that are high fiber foods. There is a big big difference between 35% carbohydrate load from vegetables and fruits, and 35% carbohydrate load from high fructose corn syrup. The fiber is like a time release mechanism for the sugar, helping to control blood sugar levels.

                      Looking at just heart disease, there is evidence starting to be discussed that high glycemic loads force the liver to convert sugar into the worst form of LDL fat, which does promote heart disease. One of the interesting premises of Paleo diets appears to be that saturated fats may be less responsible for arterial plague than eating high glycemic foods.

                      You can deceive yourself into believing that eating a big bowl of oatmeal, or foods that are fiberless and loaded with sugar and fructose, are all fine for you, but clearly all the major writers of Paleo seem convinced by the science that this is not the case. Carbohydrates are not all the same. Eating high fiber foods that do not have added sugar and fructose seems to be a clear recommendation of all of those writers.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by westes View Post
                        The problem is Einz that statements like yours are fuzzy, feel-good statements that appear to say "Eat whatever you want and whenever you want, no problem, any food, any time." That kind of nihilism leads to a place where eating Paleo means exactly nothing. At some point you have to make positive statements about what Paleo actually does mean.
                        The bright red lines of primal/paleo/whatever on here are pretty clear: no gluten, no seed oils/excess O6, no frankenfoods, minimal sugar.


                        No one said "carbs are bad for you."
                        Actually, plenty of people do say that - js290 is a prime example. Whether they are right or not is a different story.


                        The question is whether diets loaded with *high-glycemic* foods are statistically associated with degenerative diseases (e.g., heart disease, diabetes, weight gains, cancer, etc).
                        Foods in an of themselves are not nearly as important to gylcemic response as meals and context.


                        The absence of high gylcemic foods in a diet doesn't make it a low carb diet. You can eat a well balanced diet with 35% carbohydrates from leafy green vegetables and fruits and other carbohydrates that are high fiber foods.
                        There is a radical difference between vegtable carbs and fruit carbs. Why lump them together?

                        There is a big big difference between 35% carbohydrate load from vegetables and fruits, and 35% carbohydrate load from high fructose corn syrup. The fiber is like a time release mechanism for the sugar, helping to control blood sugar levels.
                        Fat will do much the same, there's no reason you can't add fat to carbs.

                        Looking at just heart disease, there is evidence starting to be discussed that high glycemic loads force the liver to convert sugar into the worst form of LDL fat, which does promote heart disease. One of the interesting premises of Paleo diets appears to be that saturated fats may be less responsible for arterial plague than eating high glycemic foods.
                        To say that's oversimplfying a complicated issue is an understatement. And paleo doesn't say SF "may be less responsible for arterial plague" it exonerates it completely.


                        You can deceive yourself into believing that eating a big bowl of oatmeal, or foods that are fiberless and loaded with sugar and fructose, are all fine for you, but clearly all the major writers of Paleo seem convinced by the science that this is not the case. Carbohydrates are not all the same. Eating high fiber foods that do not have added sugar and fructose seems to be a clear recommendation of all of those writers.

                        Oatmeal doesn't have fiber? All the major major writers of paleo agree on.... well, not much, except the bright red lines mentioned above.
                        Lifting Journal

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by MightyAl View Post
                          Everyone looks at the rice in the asian diet but fails to look at the other things that provide great health benefits. The japanese eat a ton of seaweed which provides a whole lot of micronutrients that most western diets never see. They also eat lots of fatty fish which provides fat soluble vitamins that the common western diet never sees. They are already set up to be able to eat some carbs because they don't destroy the healthy mechanisms in their bodies.
                          +1. The Japanese don't binge on high-carb meals. They are active. The traditional South-East Asian diet and lifestyle is one of the healthiest in the world and definitely one to espouse in my experience. White rice is perfect safe starch.

                          I also eat a lot of Italian risotti with a lot of vegetables, fat and protein, where the white rice makes up around 35-50% of the meal by calories.

                          My blood glucose is in the perfect range. It was in the perfect range even when I was a lot heavier and my BMI was 34. Reason why? I haven't eaten a high GI meal or snack for about 12 years now, even post-workout. Plus I've been active compared to my peers for most of my life. No need to eat high GI according to the Lean Gains protocol as far as I'm concerned, as I don't want to gain any more muscle.

                          Glycaemic index of meals matters so much more than total 'carb' intake. Macronutrient ratios by individual meal are much more important, in relation to timing during the day and circadian rhythms.
                          Last edited by paleo-bunny; 05-21-2012, 02:52 PM. Reason: typo
                          F 5 ft 3. HW: 196 lbs. Primal SW (May 2011): 182 lbs (42% BF)... W June '12: 160 lbs (29% BF) (UK size 12, US size 8). GW: ~24% BF - have ditched the scales til I fit into a pair of UK size 10 bootcut jeans. Currently aligning towards 'The Perfect Health Diet' having swapped some fat for potatoes.

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                          • #28
                            Asians eat a lot of pork too. Oh no, the Omega 6!
                            Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by westes View Post
                              The problem is Einz that statements like yours are fuzzy, feel-good statements that appear to say "Eat whatever you want and whenever you want, no problem, any food, any time." That kind of nihilism leads to a place where eating Paleo means exactly nothing. At some point you have to make positive statements about what Paleo actually does mean.

                              No one said "carbs are bad for you." The question is whether diets loaded with *high-glycemic* foods are statistically associated with degenerative diseases (e.g., heart disease, diabetes, weight gains, cancer, etc). The absence of high gylcemic foods in a diet doesn't make it a low carb diet. You can eat a well balanced diet with 35% carbohydrates from leafy green vegetables and fruits and other carbohydrates that are high fiber foods. There is a big big difference between 35% carbohydrate load from vegetables and fruits, and 35% carbohydrate load from high fructose corn syrup. The fiber is like a time release mechanism for the sugar, helping to control blood sugar levels.

                              Looking at just heart disease, there is evidence starting to be discussed that high glycemic loads force the liver to convert sugar into the worst form of LDL fat, which does promote heart disease. One of the interesting premises of Paleo diets appears to be that saturated fats may be less responsible for arterial plague than eating high glycemic foods.

                              You can deceive yourself into believing that eating a big bowl of oatmeal, or foods that are fiberless and loaded with sugar and fructose, are all fine for you, but clearly all the major writers of Paleo seem convinced by the science that this is not the case. Carbohydrates are not all the same. Eating high fiber foods that do not have added sugar and fructose seems to be a clear recommendation of all of those writers.
                              I'm going to agree with what you said, except the part about oatmeal.

                              I don't condone people eating any foods that are bad for you, and IMO oatmeal is not good for you.

                              However, I do not believe carbs are inherently bad for people, I just happen to believe that many of the foods that have high carbs are also bad for you. Just like many foods that have high bad fats are also bad for you.

                              I don't think anyone should eat whatever you want any time like you say, but I also believe people shouldn't ne too strict because then the thing gets counter-productive. This diet is not a dogma or religion like raw foods or others types of diets, yet some people act like it is. I would appreciate if people weren't so dogmatic about it, because this is a lifestyle about being healthy, and obsessing over things make it much less healthy.

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                              • #30
                                Can't speak for all of Asia but having spent a year in Thailand, they eat alot of nutritious food that we generally dont eat and if we do its very rarely. Sure, they eat alot of rice...and noodles but they generally dont eat garbage processed/fast food and they eat their fair share of fruits/vegetables, meat and offal. Some meals you order at restaurants comes with a bowl of broth.

                                The only problems I found in their diet is the fact they do consume alot of sweets and they cook alot of their food at high temperatures in rancid vegetable oils.

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