Scientists have argued over the years about what causes people to gain weight. The simplistic theory is that if you burn more calories (exercise) than you take in (eat foods), you will lose weight and vice versa.
Others argue that excess carbohydrates are stored as fat and weight gain is inevitable. Low carb and high-fat diets support the latter’s argument because people lose weight with lower carb intake.
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/scientists-propose-a-rethink-of-the-role-of-carbs-in-obesity One model used by scientists to describe weight gain is the carbohydrate-insulin model (CIM) (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6082688/). The opposing view is explained in the energy balance model (EBM) (https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/wecan/healthy-weight-basics/balance.htm). The journal Science detailed the differences https://science.sciencemag.org/content/372/6542/577.
The CIM side of the house maintains that excess carbohydrates (more than is needed to maintain weight) promote the storage of fat. Subsequently, hunger increases, and people continue to eat more. With added fat, the body’s metabolism slows, resulting in higher fat gain. Take away the excess carbohydrates, and weight loss should occur.
The journal study wants to revisit or rethink the CIM model. Insulin affects many parts of the body. Maybe scientists do not fully understand the role of insulin in the weight management process?
The calories in and calories out model (EBM) seems to work well for some people. However, metabolism changes with age, and what worked in your 20s does not work the same in your 50s.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2212877819309421 Many diets exist, and people have success (and failure) with each. A study last year tested and analyzed 29 diets currently in vogue. Laboratory mice were used to simulate human behavior over approximately nine years (12 weeks in a rat’s life equals nine years in human life). Sixteen diets kept protein levels constant and adjusted fats and carbohydrates to maintain consistent total calories per day.
Mice eating high carbohydrate diets ate fewer calories and gained less fat and body weight. Insulin levels were tracked throughout the study on all mice. Those on the high carbohydrate diets had higher insulin levels, as would be expected.
Some scientists argued that this study did not consider the mice on low carbohydrate and high-fat diets promoted metabolic dysfunction and severe inflammation, negating the study results. They cited other studies where high-carbohydrate testing resulted in rapid weight gain in mice.
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-01209-1. This study concluded earlier this year. Medical researchers tested humans for two weeks. One group was given a 10% carbohydrate and 75% fat diet and vice versa for the other group. There were no restrictions on food availability or calories.
The high carbohydrate diet predictably had higher insulin levels after eating. This same group lost more weight than the 10% carbohydrate and 75% fat group.
Why test humans for two weeks? That seems like an incredibly short period of time to measure fat and weight gains or losses. Can appetites adjust within a short window of 14 days?
My analysis of these results shows that the proponents of CIM or EBM are still at odds. Nothing was really proved. Yes, insulin affects many parts of the body and may not be fully understood.
Fat is not typically a metabolically active component in the body, yet obesity tends to show that fat may be as important as insulin in weight management and fat loss. Excess fat did not occur overnight. A couple of pounds spread out over thirty or more years becomes fifty to a hundred pounds when you add in the effects of aging on the body – slower metabolism, increased stress, and more.
I am an advocate for nutritional balance, pH management, and caloric restriction to live longer while reducing the risks of age-related diseases. Diets tend to come and go. People revert to their comfortable lifestyle of food choices and exercise. A diet is used to lose weight or fat, and when that goal is achieved, many people cannot adopt the diet as a lifestyle.
I tell people to become healthy first through a nutritional balance. The body needs over thirty nutrients daily. When we are deficient in various vitamins, minerals, amino acids, etc., the door opens for inflammation and future disease. Adapt to a lifestyle that provides nutritional balance.
Adjust that lifestyle to incrementally lower total calories over time. Understand the impact on the body’s environment with food choices – acidity or alkalinity. Gradually adopt the foods that will keep the body more alkaline than acidic.
Fruits and vegetables increase alkalinity in the body. Fats, carbohydrates, proteins, and normal body functions create acidic conditions in the body. Have a goal to eat healthier and understand what various foods do to your body first rather than jump on a ketogenic diet to lose forty pounds to find out that two years from now, you gained it all back, plus some.
Live Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin – RedOLaughlin.com