Why We Get Fat Kindle Fire by Gary Taubes
Click Here to Download the Book An eye-opening, myth-shattering examination of what makes us fat, from acclaimed science writer Gary Taubes. In his New York Times best seller, Good Calories, Bad Calories, Taubes argued that our diet’s overemphasis on certain kinds of carbohydrates—not fats and not simply excess calories—has led directly to the obesity epidemic we face today. The result of thorough research, keen insight, and unassailable common sense, Good Calories, Bad Calories immediately stirred controversy and acclaim among academics, journalists, and writers alike. Michael Pollan heralded it as “a vitally important book, destined to change the way we think about food.” Building upon this critical work in Good Calories, Bad Calories and presenting fresh evidence for his claim, Taubes now revisits the urgent question of what’s making us fat—and how we can change—in this exciting new book. Persuasive, straightforward, and practical, Why We Get Fat makes Taubes’s crucial argument newly accessible to a wider audience. Taubes reveals the bad nutritional science of the last century, none more damaging or misguided than the “calories-in, calories-out” model of why we get fat, and the good science that has been ignored, especially regarding insulin’s regulation of our fat tissue. He also answers the most persistent questions: Why are some people thin and others fat? What roles do exercise and genetics play in our weight? What foods should we eat, and what foods should we avoid? Packed with essential information and concluding with an easy-to-follow diet, Why We Get Fat is an invaluable key in our understanding of an international epidemic and a guide to what each of us can do about it.
Reviews I used to be very smug about how healthy I thought my low-fat eating habits were. Then I got a physical and discovered my lipid counts were horrendous. My first assumption was that it must be hereditary, since my eating habits were so good. The doctor told me to cut down on foods I hardly eat in the first place (eggs and red meat), so I felt like I needed a different answer. I browsed books on Diet and Nutrition that were well-reviewed when I found these books by Taubes. From the reader feedback, it sounded like "Atkins" to me, and since I always thought he was an irresponsible quack, I was highly skeptical. But I couldn't ignore all of the positive feedback, so I started reading. It wasn't long before I felt completely duped by everything I thought I knew. Taubes lays out his heresies in such a well-documented, logical manner, I found it impossible not to be convinced. I was converted from a fat-counter to a carb-counter. I started eating more eggs and meat, not less, and did my best to cut out as many refined carbs as I could, giving up bread, rice, pasta, potatoes, and switching to low sugar versions of foods I couldn't give up (eg oatmeal). After just 4 weeks, my lipid counts showed amazing improvement. My cholesterol was down 40 points, my triglycerides were cut by more than half, and my HDL actually went up. I won't go so far as to take everything in this book as gospel; eg I can't justify any recommendation of processed meats, but in terms of the overall theory espoused in this book, I'm a complete believer, and I've got the numbers to prove it.
I'm not going to rehash other reviews. This book is a follow-on to "Good Calories, Bad Calories" and includes some practical suggestions as well as updates to the original work. It is far more accessible to the general reader than the previous book, although that makes it somewhat less satisfying to the professional audience. Regardless, the book is worth it for incorporating one additional study that appeared after "Good Calories, Bad Calories", and that is the A-Z study out of Stanford. The study, which was widely reported in the press, was the first to directly compare various diets, as the diets were published, on parameters such as weight loss, blood pressure, etc. "As the diets were published" is a key phrase--much of the science on this subject is flawed because the researchers, intentionally or otherwise, modify the low-carb diets in such a way as to invalidate their studies. The Stanford study did not do that; it used the Atkins diet as recommended by Atkins. The study found that the Atkins diet was far superior in all respects to the other diets, which included some
high-carb, low-calorie versions. The inclusion of that study in this book is worthy, but it's really the provision by Taubes of the back story that is most illuminating. He reported that the principal investigator, who is himself a vegetarian, was surprised by and did not particularly like the results. As a practicing scientist, I can tell prospective readers that when a scientist gets results he neither expects nor likes, he goes back through his own study with a fine-toothed comb before submitting it for publication. Scientists don't often try to disprove themselves (or at least, not very vigorously), except in this kind of situation. That the PI was compelled to publish the study, despite his personal feelings about the results, is extremely telling, and extremely compelling.
After reading this book, I FINALLY understand why decades of following dietary guides offered by the FDA and others who promote a low-fat/low protein diet NEVER worked for me. I FINALLY understand why spending hours at the gym each week doing cardio and weight training, while eating low-fat/low protein portion controlled diets didn't result in weight-loss. After reading this book I now realize that simply cutting out sugar is not enough for MY body to lose fat: I must also eliminate most fruits from my diet if I want to shed fat. And after reading this book, I have a completely different understanding about cholesterol issues -- both medical and dietary. What I read makes me disgusted about the lies we are told about nutrition and health by "experts" that are supposed to have our best interests at heart.
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