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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 11:31 am 
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i've heard people say a bunch of times on this forum "a calorie is not a calorie" which i take to mean that if you eat 2500 calories of junk you'll get fat, but if you eat 2500 calroies of decent food, you'll be fine.

Thing is my girlfriend is trying to lose weight, and she's looking to me for advice. Even though i think she's gorgeous the way she is I'm obviously going to support any health conscious decision she makes.

Now i know a bit about nutrition, but not loads. If anyone has any links or info they can give me please feel free. The problem I'm having is there's so much conflicting information on the net, I don't know where to start.

All advice is much appreciated
Bob


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 1:43 pm 
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Bob, the stickies are full of links, but,a good set of starting guidelines would be on Berardi's site as well as here on this site. In particular, see
http://www.johnberardi.com/articles/nut ... habits.htm
Tim


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 4:55 am 
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Robert, I want to post this article:

http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/weig ... vironment/

The graphs alone are worth the price of admission, although Dr. Eades is on of the people you should pay attention to.

Obiesity has been rising since 1976. During the same period, total calories consumed have also risen. The proportion of calories coming from carbs has also risen. These are not unrelated. In fact, eating carbs makes you hungry and you eat more and more people get fat. 1976 was not a coincidence. That was the year that the American government started telling people to cut back on saturated fat.

Stu


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 5:39 am 
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There have even been studies showing people loosing weight by restricting carbs even though total calories is higher.

Check this out.
http://exrx.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5731

I am most of the way through it, just a couple more chapters to go. I have read, Atkins, Protein Power, various web sites, research papers and built upa lot of knowledge over the years. But there were things in there I didn't even know about. Or at least additional details. It goes through all the science backing this up.

Assuming all calories are the same, is insane when you think about it. That is like saying several vastly different substances are going to have identical effects on any and all of your hormones. That's impossible. It also ignores what we evolved to eat and the fact that there has been insufficient time to evolve the ability to eat other foods that we created relatively recently. No creature as complex as we are can evolve to eat radically different food in less than 10,000 years. That's another reason why all calories being equal is not possible.

Of course to be technical the calories are equal in that they are 1Kcal of energy. However the energy contained is irrelevant due to the effects on our extremely complex endocrine system.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 9:30 am 
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I did finish the book [Good Carbs, Bad Carbs]. It's a fantastic work. That book along with "The Omnivore's Dilema" by Michael Pollan should be on everyone's reading list.

One thing he [Gary Taubes] doesn't look at is MSG. This is a potential contributor to obeisity as it encourages consumption of foods contaiing it, such as fast foods and prepared foods. It's the neurological impact of MSG that bothers me the most although I'm still researching it. Anyway, it's a factor that needs to be considered.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 9:58 am 
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thanks guys, I was hoping you three would chime in on this. I should maybe ahve given a bit more background, basically my girlfriend is very much an endomorph/mesomorph who can lose and gain weight very easily. Due to the lifestyle she leads (drinking, smoking and eating rubbish) she often finds herself putting it on more than losing it.

Partly my fault, I'm permanently trying to bulk up so i eat a lot of calorie dense foods and usually when i eat she'll have something with me even if she's not hungry...

Anyway she's asked me to help her so i told her what I knew: limit carbs, lots of protein, LOADS of fruit and veg, eat oily fish

But that's about as much help as I could be. Tim I PROMISE i will read those stickies but in the meantime i do have a couple of questions:

1. Why are some carbs ok and others not? Like why are wholewheat carbs ok but processed carbs are not?
2. What's the deal with glycaemic index? Is that important for fat loss?
3. If she was to limit her carbs, what's a realistic figure to try and hit? Bearing in mind she's a sedentary 22 year old.
4. What's the deal with protein being thermogenic? Can that factor in weight loss?
5. Are there any ill effects from restricting carbs?

(feel free to shout at me if those are stupid questions)

Anyway like i say I will definitely read those stickies and those links, and like always your help is greatly appreciated. I have an awful feeling I've opened a huge can of worms and i'm about to bury myself in weight loss info.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:17 am 
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Those are not stupid questions at all. In fact you have touched on some very contreversial subjects. I'll give you my opinions.

Quote:
1. Why are some carbs ok and others not? Like why are wholewheat carbs ok but processed carbs are not?


Fibrous veg are high in nutrients and fibre while low in calories. Eat all you want, they will fill you up. Beyond that, wholewheat, beans and tubers are high carbs and high calorie and should be managed. All are better than highly refined grains due to their higher nutrient levels.

Quote:
2. What's the deal with glycaemic index? Is that important for fat loss?


Slow carbs have less of an effect on insulin but overall it may not be that big a deal. Less processed is always better but GI may not be as important as previously thought.

Quote:
3. If she was to limit her carbs, what's a realistic figure to try and hit? Bearing in mind she's a sedentary 22 year old.


Look for my link to Marks daily Apple. He breaks it down nicely. Under 100-130 carbs, the body goes ketogenic and burns fat. Maintenance is slightly higher. 200-300 is OK for gaining while over 300 is for getting fat. I know my numbers are ballpark but the article goes into more detail.

Edit: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-prim ... continuum/

Quote:
4. What's the deal with protein being thermogenic? Can that factor in weight loss?


The effect is small but it is real. Protein and fat satisfy hunger more than carbs. This is a much bigger effect.

Quote:
5. Are there any ill effects from restricting carbs?


Having some carbs makes eating more enjoyable but many people eat no carbs and get by very well. I think it's extreme and boring to live off pemmican all the time but it's possible.

Here's are 2 great zero carb blogs.
http://blog.zeroinginonhealth.com/
http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/
Zero carb should not be confused with low-carb. It is more extreme.


Last edited by stuward on Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:57 am 
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Maybe this will help with the issue "a calorie is a calorie" or not.

I think the problem with out thinking is that we conceive of a calorie as a thing, a substance. Somehow calories are contained in our food. But a calorie is a unit of measurement.

Saying "a calorie is a calorie" is like saying "a meter is a meter". Doesn't make sense when you put it that way, right? A meter of dental floss is quite different than a meter of logging chain, but they are the same length.

Another part of the problem is how the "calorie content" of foods is determined, which is not at all like how energy is extracted from the nutrients in the body. To measure calorie content in the lab, the substance is dried and then burned in a closed chamber. The burning food is used to heat a measured volume of water. An increase of 1degree Celsius per milliliter of water is a calorie. If that were how our bodies were fueled, then "a calorie is a calorie" would make sense. But our body extracts chemical energy from nutrients by chemical means, and it uses carbohydrates, fats and amino acids in very different ways.

So yeah, if your girlfriend (or anyone else) were to eat a set number of calories worth of junk or the same number of calories worth of quality food, the difference would be significantly different.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:22 am 
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Bob, the first sticky would have gotten yu there. Here it is in reprint

All should read this. It might cut down on a lot of questions. Stu posted this last week, I cut and pasted it. I'm just adding in a little on the legumes on the end of it

Quote
Fibrous veg is the best source of nutrients and the are relatively low on calories and high in fiber. These would be all the green and colourful veg. Regardless of your diet you can and should eat as many of these vegetables as you want without restriction. Some even burn more calories than they provide. These are even better when eaten raw.

What's not included are potatoes, sweet potatoes, legumes and corn. (Corn is actually a grain) These are higher in calories and would be better in bulking diets. Grains should be treated similarly as they are less nutrient dense and higher calories. The additional issue with grains is over processing. You should avoid any white grains (white flour, sugar, white rice) except for post workout. Grains should always be cooked.

Fruits are healthy but some are concerned in the amount of sugar in them. These should also be eaten in moderation.

Stu
End Quote

I agree wholeheartedly, and have his permission to Sticky this. Its a very short, sweet and simple guideline. Only one thing I'd like to add. The legumes. They are a starch, but they are also different in the fact that they have a gummy fibrous type of material in them. Great for fiber, but like the grains and potato starch, etc, they are fairly calorie dense. I treat these as I would a grain, I just serve them in moderation. Just as a for instance, I love a barley / lentil mix, I just hardly ever use over a 1/4 to 1/3 cup serving (thats cooked).

Just posted this to cut down on confusion and it is a Frequently Asked Question

Tim


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:28 am 
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Tim, I should read the stickies too. I had the carb continuum link in that same thread and I just spent a few minutes looking it up again.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:35 pm 
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Also, Bob, my g/f doesn't exercise but is naturally very slim. She can also add 7-8 lbs in like, 2 weeks, if she's had a few nights out and binges n stuff. She can lose it just as quickly, though.

Anyway, the more she eats with me the better she looks. I'm not boasting or anything, it's just true. I adhere to Berardi's 7 habbits as much as I can. I eat near enough every 2-3 hours without fail. Meat/eggs and veg primarily. If my g/f is a bit softer around the edges, she just eats with me and it sorts her out. She can't eat as much as me in one go so it's not like she gets the same amount of calories. I normally eat what she leaves, too, so I benefit as well. She never eats pre bed time though, like, midnight-ish, understandably just never in the mood to eat at that time but as it works out I normally eat at that time.

Also, there's probably loads of women who follow the Precision Nutrition guidelines.

Anyway, my point is - if you eat well, she has a better chance of eating well. And, there's no reason she can't eat the same stuff you eat. Unless you're on the Seafood Bulkers Diet - eat everything you see :wink:

KPj


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2009 4:20 am 
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I can relate to that. A few years ago I had a girlfriend that would sometimes stay over for the weekend. She told me she always lost 2 or 3 pounds every weekend she spent with me.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 2:21 am 
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I don't know that much about this but anyway...

Because im bulking, im eating allot of carbs and protein, and fat too. (I have a very high metabolism) Now, about this carb thing, wouldnt it be really good to take a B complex vitamin right before or after eating a high carb/fat meal, like a big mac lol or tripple whopper? (Yes i ate a triple whopper lol it was good)

Since most b vitamins help to metabolize carbs and fats into energy.

Also i guess vitamin c would help too since it helps in the absorption of vitamin b.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 7:39 am 
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^^^Umm, if anything I'd recommend you buy digestive enzymes.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:31 am 
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there's so much to learn about this. I don't get why the whole world is so down on fats when it's carbs that are the 'enemy'.

I remember when i was just a kid at school when we were learning about different foods, carbs like rice and potatoes were called the 'filler' because they were supposed to be the part of the meal that filled you up after you'd got your protein form the meat and your nutrients from the veg. And now i hear that protein and fats fill you up more!

It's insane how wrong the general population seems to be about everything


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