December 16 2012

Weekend Link Love – Edition 221

By Mark Sisson

Research of the Week

New data reveals that eating fewer, larger meals is “more advantageous metabolically” for obese women than eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. Another dearly-held nutrition myth edges ever closer to chomping down on powdered particles of earth and waste matter.

UC Berkeley researchers just found a new gene that encodes for de novo lipogenesis, or the conversion of carbs to fat. There’s talk of drugs targeting this genetic pathway, of course, or you could always take matters into your own hands and just limit carbs (FDA approval not required, yet).

Interesting Blog Posts

Leo Babauta wrote a quick little guide on removing holiday clutter. I find that clearing out the physical clutter in your life has a positive correlation with the disappearance of mental clutter, and I don’t need a randomized control trial to tell me that causation is involved here.

Over at Paleo NonPaleo, a large swath of the Primal/paleo world (including yours truly) was interviewed about their holiday advice and predictions for the new year. Go check it out.

Anyone remember having a pen pal? If you have, you’ll love Paleo Pen Pals. If you’re scratching your head in confusion, this post will bring you up to speed (and you’ll love it, too).

Media, Schmedia

More and more people are getting hip to the perniciousness of modern wheat and shifting toward ancient heirloom grains like einkorn. Might I suggest they take a few more steps, ditch grains altogether, and start eating like the real ancients?

Or we can simply wait for global climate change to take care of wheat for us.

Guess what got voted one of the worst dieting trends of 2012? We must be doing something right.

Everything Else

Archaeologists found evidence (special clay pots) that people were making cheese as early as 7,000 years ago. The process hasn’t changed much, researchers say, although I don’t think ancient Northern Europeans were making Velveeta or Kraft singles.

This will seem familiar to many of you, I’d imagine.

Recipe Corner

  • Homemade Sichuan bacon. That is all. Oh, yeah, and there’s apparently some cabbage or other green thing mentioned too.
  • Gaze longingly and guiltily at the greasy Chinese buffet no longer, for a healthy recipe for General Tso’s chicken is available.

Time Capsule

One year ago (Dec 16 – Dec 22)

  • The Joy of Receiving – There are a lot of gifts out there for the taking, guys. They may not all be tangible or come with a gift receipt, but we need to be ready to accept them if we hope to really live.
  • Tails, Tendons, and Tripe: A Guide to Discovering the Odd Bits – Learn how to discern between the spleens, the pancreases, the coagulated blood cubes, and all the myriad edible bits and pieces that we’d be more comfortable ignoring (at our own peril).

Comment of the Week

So glad to see the hipsters are hunting now. In fact my husband said he spotted a few in Oregon on his elk hunting trip. I suggested to him that we should start a line of camouflage skinny jeans. I know… Brilliant!

– Brilliant idea, Trinity. Go for it.

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46 thoughts on “Weekend Link Love – Edition 221”

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  1. “Some cabbage or other green thing”?! Damn, you haven’t tried Sichuan cabbage before. So good.

  2. It gets me so angry when I hear bad things written about paleo. The people who say it is a terrible diet are so uninformed too. You always hear stuff like it’s unhealthy to cut out a whole food group, or you won’t be able to get enough fiber without whole wheat. One of the most annoying lies is that you can’t get enough calcium from the paleo diet. Americans have the highest calcium intake in the world and the most osteoporosis, so clearly it is more than just about calcium. Vitamin D, Vitamin K and Magnesium are all just as important for bone health.

    1. Well the person is receiving a through verbal flogging down in the comments for their remarks.

    2. Every time I click on one of these links it’s the same woman from the AND selling the same line of BS. Google ‘ corporate sponsors’ and click on the first result to see who funds the Association of Nutrition and Dietetics on their official site.

      I’m sure Pepsi/FritoLay and Cargill truly have my wellbeing in mind.

      1. Holy crap! Yea their sponsors are scary.
        General Mills
        Pepsi co

        Those are the worst players and there are many other. Frightening.

        1. One of the things I always say to myself in the midst of doing my own research on conflicting issues…”Follow the money”.

  3. hi, re. the gene inhibiting de novo lipogenesis – in humans, unless you’re on an extremely low fat diet, the rate of de novo lipogenesis is almost insignificant, beyond the case of severe alcoholism (hepatic de novo lipogenesis). we simply don’t turn carbs to fat like that.

  4. I found that two or three moderate meals work better for me (obese woman) than grazing or IF, but only if I eat a protein breakfast. Yay!

  5. Chuckle at the “Worst Diet Trend” from Is it really unhealthy to cut out an entire food group if it shouldn’t have been a food group in the first place?

    1. Notice how “veganism” isn’t on the Worst list, even though it cuts out all meat and dairy. I guess it’s OK to be malnourished and grumpy all the time if you do it for “moral” reasons.

  6. “Worst Diet Trends” is really a laugher. I guess giving up processed foods is too tough for us.

  7. The amount of misinformation on best/worst diet trends is astounding… and not just on the paleo page, but all the others as well. The author clearly has no nutrition education at all

  8. I had a “hey wait a minute!” deal with the article about de novo lipogenesis. They inhibited the body’s ability to store glucose as fat – but isn’t that basically diabetes? Where does the glucose go? Does anyone have a link to the study?

  9. Yes, you must trust Giancoli because she is definitely all about health and not media hype .

    “Prior to becoming a registered dietitian, Giancoli was a television news producer for CNN, Extra! and CBS’s Day & Date.”

    One of the largest reasons the U.S. is incredibly unhealthy is because it’s policies, regulations and research funding are all driven by the industries with the most money.

  10. It makes sense about the fewer smaller meals. I notice I do better with a few meals and some intermittent fasting ala lean gains

  11. Re: Sichuan Bacon

    Thank you for linking! I’ll be posting more paleo-friendly recipes using that bacon, too. I’m looking forward to reading your Healthy Sauces book.

  12. Anyone read the comments on the “Worst diet trends” opinion piece? I refuse to call it an article, because that could imply some facts were used. 90% of the comments are “um…paleo worked great for me and got rid of X”.

    How is paleo worse than the Hollywood Cookie diet?

    1. Perhaps paleo is ‘worse’ because it is a genuine threat to the conventional wisdom that she has become an ‘expert’ in.

  13. Great links, it’s been awhile since I’ve visited your blog Mark. Great to see you’re still writing (or in the case of the weekend – linking to) great content after all these years!

  14. The study regarding quantity of meals was done with obese women and entirely with liquids as the intake. One can wonder if 1500 calories as three 500 calorie meals or six 250 calorie meals really makes a difference. I tend to eat smaller meals several times a day, it “feels” best for me in terms of energy levels, but I have no bio-metrics to confirm this. People at work often exclaim “you’re always munching on something and you’re so fit, how the heck can you do that!?” Some days go by and I’ve only consumed two meals. I’m pretty fit but my midsection is not as toned as I’d like, perhaps I should try the two-a-day / Leanfit approach.

  15. Wow, that “best and worst diets of 2012” was so stupid, I was in shock. At least the comments are good. 🙂

    1. I put in my 2 CENTS!! 6 months of following a moderately calorie restricted, low-fat, high-carb (plenty of healthy whole grains) very healthy version of the SAD and getting in plenty of exercise helped me drop 10lbs BUT I WAS PROGRESSING TOWARDS FULL BLOWN DIABETES THE ENTIRE TIME. Reactive Hypos ARE NOT fun.

  16. I define healthy foods by myself, since i am gfcf i have defeated CFS (Cfids) and fibromyalgia. So what should be healthy on wheat…
    Every doctor told me i will never get fit again, there would be no cure or medicine, only happy pills and painkillers. I will never eat any wheat again for sure.

  17. I de-stressed Christmas and other holidays by reading this book ( many years ago, and putting it to use. What also helps is having cats–there isn’t a holiday that’s safe for them! The plants are poisonous, the decorations are dangerous if ingested, the food isn’t good for them, and on and on…then, there’s the Climb the Tree and Knock Off the Ornaments game, or Timber! Let’s Knock Down the Whole Tree, or Shred the Presents…and that’s just Christmas. They also wade through Easter egg dye, try to drink green beer, try to eat Valentine’s Day candies, freak out over the doorbell ringing at Halloween, freak out over fireworks at July 4th, and beg for too much Thanksgiving turkey.

  18. All they could come up with against paleo is it’s hard to sustain??

  19. “gifts come in varying – perhaps deceptive but often simply modest – guises. We may not understand the value of one until much later.”

    Considering the recent tragedy in CT, this statement could not be more true. Thanks for reposting this article, Mark.

  20. My husband actually showed me the “worst dieting trends” article. I’m glad that I had plenty of facts from MDA and other paleo/primal sites to show him why the article was way off-base. Every anti-paleo article I’ve ever read can only come up with “it’s too expensive” and “it’s too hard to maintain”. Really? That’s it?

    1. Yeah, eating fat is so hard to maintain… 🙂 all I hear from my friends who are on CW “diets” is how hard it is to eat low fat and low calories, and how unfair it is that I eat bacon and butter and stay slim. I’ve been eating this way now for almost a year and it has been very easy to “maintain” eating veggies slathered with butter, or a nice bowl of homemade stock with fatty meat in it (lamb, yum!).

  21. That worst diet trends list’s assessment of paleo sounds like a prime example of regurgitating conventional wisdom, instead of actually trying primal/paleo.

    From the article:
    “results are far from sustainable, as the restrictions make the diet difficult to keep up…it can set dieters up for cravings and nutritional deficiencies.”

    Really? Because I had a lot more hunger pangs and cravings when I ate grains than I do now. I’m also not as hungry as often.

    “Whenever it requires cutting out healthy foods (like whole grains, dairy, legumes), it doesn’t”

    I can’t even deal with that statement, or take this assessment seriously.

    1. To take that assessment seriously, the article author needs to explain which nutrients are available in grains & nowhere else. How do Celiacs survive???

  22. On meal size & frequency – I did primal for a while eating large meals far apart. And I never got past the cravings for sugar, lost weight very slowly, failed at sticking to it.

    My doctor told me to try eating 6x/day for unrelated health issue – which I’m doing but with primal. Now I’m losing weight much faster, sugar cravings are history. My house is full of candy canes & Christmas cookies & I haven’t eaten a crumb, haven’t been tempted.

    All my life I’ve wanted to eat more frequently, have never wanted a lot of food at once. Whatever studies show, I think we aren’t all the same. We each have to do what works best for us. Trying both ways is worthwhile.

  23. Thanks for the Gen’l Tso’s chicken–yum!

    Re: hipsters are hunting quote: Don’t forget the dayglo porkpie hat to go with the skinny camo chinos!

  24. “Clutter accumulates when energy stagnates and, likewise, energy stagnates when clutter accumulates.”