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      03-10-2024, 05:20 AM   #1
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Diet Questions Answered

The old COVID thread popped up and I had forgotten I had even done it, but there was some good information in it. I thought I would do a diet question thread to answer questions on diets. It can be for health in general or workout related nutrition. For those that don't know, I'm an amateur anthropologist, a pharmacist and a research geek. I'll be willing to bet many of you don't like my answers.
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      03-10-2024, 07:37 PM   #2
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Thanks. What is the most misunderstood diet concept in circulation these days?
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      03-11-2024, 05:31 AM   #3
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Thanks. What is the most misunderstood diet concept in circulation these days?
The misunderstood concept in dieting these days is that there is one diet that is the best for everyone. What is best for me may not be the best for you. In fact, it may be detrimental. What we need to eat is based on our internal microbiota which determines our immune response. So in essence, we need to eat what helps our immune system.
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      03-11-2024, 12:25 PM   #4
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As I understand the relationship between sodium and high blood pressure, it's not the sodium per se that elevates your blood pressure. It's because sodium makes you retain water, and that excess water is what elevates your blood pressure, right? That's why the docs usually prescribe a diuretic. So if you exercise a lot and perspire heavily, like I do when cycling in the summer, then your main concern is hydrating sufficiently. A diuretic would be counter-productive as you would keep excess water at bay through perspiration (and heavy breathing).

Assuming that's all correct, let's switch to cholesterol. If you're taking a statin and your cholesterol numbers are way low, do you still need to avoid cholesterol heavy foods like eggs and so on. IOW, does the cholesterol from such foods still contribute to arterial problems even though your LDL is way below the standard range. Or does the statin prevent that?
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      03-11-2024, 01:47 PM   #5
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This reminds me of the Steve Martin movie, The Jerk. Remember that one?

"It's the cans! He hates these cans!"

Substitute cans for cholesterol, salt, sugar, bread, starch or any of the enemies of modern dietary thinking.

For example, Patient A is given a complete physical and blood labs are taken. High blood pressure, sodium, sugar and cholesterol are noted. Presciptions are written. All good, right?

What doesn't come out in the discussion is that Patient A is 150 lbs overweight, does not exercise, and eats a large bag of Lay's potato chips and drinks a 2 liter of full-sugar carbonated beverage every day.

What would happen if Patient A was at a mid-healthy range BMI eating a balanced diet from all food groups in existence 2,000 years ago, and had a VO2max in the 40-50 range, but still registered high on cholesterol, salt and sugar in blood labs?

Is it the cans, or is it the cans?
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      03-11-2024, 02:17 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by M_Six View Post
As I understand the relationship between sodium and high blood pressure, it's not the sodium per se that elevates your blood pressure. It's because sodium makes you retain water, and that excess water is what elevates your blood pressure, right? That's why the docs usually prescribe a diuretic. So if you exercise a lot and perspire heavily, like I do when cycling in the summer, then your main concern is hydrating sufficiently. A diuretic would be counter-productive as you would keep excess water at bay through perspiration (and heavy breathing).

Assuming that's all correct, let's switch to cholesterol. If you're taking a statin and your cholesterol numbers are way low, do you still need to avoid cholesterol heavy foods like eggs and so on. IOW, does the cholesterol from such foods still contribute to arterial problems even though your LDL is way below the standard range. Or does the statin prevent that?
Correct on the sodium and water. Think of water following sodium and vice versa. If you are constipated, you don't have enough water in the colon which means you most likely don't have enough interstitial sodium. (most sodium is outside our cells) Always remember when you are dehydrated, it's much easier to eat sodium than to drink it.

Statins inhibit an enzyme that is essential in cholesterol formation. If you eat a lot of cholesterol, your cholesterol can be high if you are eating too much. The statin will decrease production, but if you eat too much.....
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      03-11-2024, 02:28 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by chassis View Post
This reminds me of the Steve Martin movie, The Jerk. Remember that one?

"It's the cans! He hates these cans!"

Substitute cans for cholesterol, salt, sugar, bread, starch or any of the enemies of modern dietary thinking.

For example, Patient A is given a complete physical and blood labs are taken. High blood pressure, sodium, sugar and cholesterol are noted. Presciptions are written. All good, right?

What doesn't come out in the discussion is that Patient A is 150 lbs overweight, does not exercise, and eats a large bag of Lay's potato chips and drinks a 2 liter of full-sugar carbonated beverage every day.

What would happen if Patient A was at a mid-healthy range BMI eating a balanced diet from all food groups in existence 2,000 years ago, and had a VO2max in the 40-50 range, but still registered high on cholesterol, salt and sugar in blood labs?

Is it the cans, or is it the cans?
It's a combination of factors, but in a nutshell, we eat too many calories. The reason many people do this is habit, food availability, and nutritional deficiency. When someone craves a food, that's the body's way of saying it wants it. It often does this because it needs it. What is your favorite food? Look up the molecular components of that food and see if it's something you are getting enough of. Seafood is a great example. Do the people that love it have enough iodine or 3-PUFA's? That is often case more than it's not.

We Americans typically don't eat enough diversity. We eat the same things over and over which leads to greater nutritional deficiencies. We eat more calories to get more nutrients. I often tell patients to eat more colors. That increases the diversity of what they eat.
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      03-11-2024, 02:53 PM   #8
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Being insulin-dependent diabetic, I'm relatively sure my cravings for sugar are NOT related to the sugar levels in my blood stream

After 40+ years with this condition I have a decent understanding of macros. BUT, my wife is Hispanic and does all the cooking, so I don't get the diabetes-friendly options. As she is getting more and more encounters with her own blood sugar levels, I'm hopeful she will eventually agree she needs to go WITH ME to see a nutritionist.
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      03-11-2024, 04:37 PM   #9
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I see more and more folks pushing for avoidance of ultra-processed foods. We've become very conscious of what is in the food we eat. Avoiding ultra-processed foods entirely is difficult, but it's not too hard to greatly reduce your intake. Just read the ingredient list and avoid the "chemistry sets." Like this guy says...

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      03-11-2024, 04:51 PM   #10
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As mentioned above, not all diets are a good fit for everyone. I've gone through many diets and have yo-yo'd a lot. For the past 1.5 yrs, for the first time, I've been able to maintain a realatively healthy weight, although I could afford to lose ten more pounds. That's a far cry from when I weighed almost 240lbs being 5'8". I was a fat fuck. So now at 177, I feel good, look much better, and have less health issues.

My diet consists of three things every meal. A protien, fiber, and fat. The carbs I eat mostly come unprocessed foods such as chick peas, berries, and sometimes those low-carb tortillas. I've also found that the old calorie counting works great for me. I feel fine at 1,500 k/cal a day and it's easily sustainable with drinking a lot of water, two cups of black coffee, and maybe a Coke Zero once in a while.

The way I see it, you don't get to be a fat fuck like me by not eating crap foods and too much food. I've reduced my portion size, and I make better choices when dining out. Something I didn't do when I was 70 lbs heavier, and no more Dorito dinners either lol.
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      03-11-2024, 05:21 PM   #11
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I went from just shy of 300lbs (6'3") to my current weight of 210 mostly due to cycling and changing my diet to avoid junk and not eating out so often. I'd like to drop another 20lbs, but I've been at this equilibrium point for years despite riding 100 miles/week and walking daily. More exercise isn't feasible, so I'm going to have to buckle down (no pun intended) on my diet to lose those 20lbs.
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      03-11-2024, 05:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kick 6 View Post

Statins inhibit an enzyme that is essential in cholesterol formation. If you eat a lot of cholesterol, your cholesterol can be high if you are eating too much. The statin will decrease production, but if you eat too much.....
So it's possible to overwhelm your statin. Makes perfect sense. But that leads me to another question. If I have a lipid panel done and my LDL count is at or below 50 (what my cardio doc wants to see), does that mean I'm good to go? Or can you have a very low LDL count like that and still be clogging your arteries? As I understand it, LDL is a measure of the "bad" cholesterol level in your bloodstream. So it would seem that a low LDL count would mean a low chance of building more plaque in your arteries.
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      03-11-2024, 08:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kick 6 View Post
...we eat too many calories.
Agree. I hold the view that this is the single most important aspect of diet. It is the first thing, of first things first.
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      03-11-2024, 10:29 PM   #14
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With my family history, I'm always trying to learn more about keeping my heart healthy. If the LDL can be low but plaque is still building, that's definitely something I want to understand better.
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      03-12-2024, 03:35 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleWede View Post
Being insulin-dependent diabetic, I'm relatively sure my cravings for sugar are NOT related to the sugar levels in my blood stream

After 40+ years with this condition I have a decent understanding of macros. BUT, my wife is Hispanic and does all the cooking, so I don't get the diabetes-friendly options. As she is getting more and more encounters with her own blood sugar levels, I'm hopeful she will eventually agree she needs to go WITH ME to see a nutritionist.
Type I diabetes is a different animal all together. Something made your pancreas stop working properly which limits your insulin supply. There are case reports of the Coxsackievirus doing that but there are probably others as well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by M_Six View Post
I see more and more folks pushing for avoidance of ultra-processed foods. We've become very conscious of what is in the food we eat. Avoiding ultra-processed foods entirely is difficult, but it's not too hard to greatly reduce your intake. Just read the ingredient list and avoid the "chemistry sets." Like this guy says...

If you had to rate the chemical reactions in our body from most important to least important, pH regulation would be the most important. IMO, processed foods usually have a slightly lower pH but it has so many chemicals that it can stress our pH buffering capacity. Our pH will be regulated at all cost so putting stress on one pathway causes issues with other pathways. Our body robs Peter to pay Paul so to speak. pH is the main determinant of our GI bacterial assortment, so eating overly acidic foods is detrimental to our longevity. (this is an entire thread in itself)

You have to think of what nutrients are you getting from the food you eat and processed foods just don't have a lot of valuable nutrients.
Quote:
Originally Posted by M_Six View Post
So it's possible to overwhelm your statin. Makes perfect sense. But that leads me to another question. If I have a lipid panel done and my LDL count is at or below 50 (what my cardio doc wants to see), does that mean I'm good to go? Or can you have a very low LDL count like that and still be clogging your arteries? As I understand it, LDL is a measure of the "bad" cholesterol level in your bloodstream. So it would seem that a low LDL count would mean a low chance of building more plaque in your arteries.
Cholesterol is not the evil devil that they've made it out to be. It forms plaques on the interior artery walls to help the body, not hurt it. It eventually diminishes blood flow and causes problems, but it's a quick fix to micro arterial damage. It's related to GI intestinal bacterial assortment which affects bile acid and other factors that control cholesterol levels. There have been 23 types of commensal bacterial found in atherosclerotic plaques. There is a lot more going on there than what we've been told.
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Originally Posted by orangetiger View Post
With my family history, I'm always trying to learn more about keeping my heart healthy. If the LDL can be low but plaque is still building, that's definitely something I want to understand better.
Try to lower insulin spikes. That may mean eating less sugar, eating more complex carbs, or adding fiber or good fat to the meal to blunt the sugar spike. I am personally a fan of eating more fiber in the diet. There is solid research on its benefits.
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      03-12-2024, 11:25 AM   #16
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Quote:
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Type I diabetes is a different animal all together. Something made your pancreas stop working properly which limits your insulin supply. There are case reports of the Coxsackievirus doing that but there are probably others as well.
Both my cousin (who preceded me into the diabetes camp by a couple years) and myself had strep in the year leading up to diagnosis. Cousin had a double-whammy in that they gave him penicillin and he found out he was violently allergic.

Funny, there was no "family history" when cousin was diagnosed. But when I got the diagnosis, well, aunty Y and uncle X MAY have been diabetic. . .

When I felt the best, blood sugar in best control (A1c 6.9-7.1) I was roughly following 40-30-30, but most certainly I was also exercising on the regular.
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      04-15-2024, 03:49 PM   #17
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Another video from the series posted above.

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      04-16-2024, 04:25 PM   #18
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Eat from the earth similar to what humans ate for 1,000's of yrs, thee end.
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