Nutrition Rant

Post questions and tips on right foods and right balance of nutrients for combat sports and martial arts, individual encounter games (for example, tennis), and team games.

Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Jul 20, 2009 15:15

Since Friday (it is now the following Monday) I have been a little over-concerned with proper nutrition. I'm not sure how or why this happened; I'm not overweight, and I'm otherwise healthy. This atypical concern led to some very modest reading, and that led to some confusion, frustration, and a little cynicism. Primarily on my mind was proper macrunutrient rations (protein, fat, carbs), and after reading some not mainstream opinions on which fats to consume, that issue also became of interest. Here's a little of what I found for healthy adults, generally:

Barry Sears' Zone:
Protein: 33%; Fat: a "dash"; Carbs: 66%
Fat priorities: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated; saturated

USDA Dietary Recommendations:
Protein: 18%; Fat: 29%; Carbs: 53%
Fat priorities: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated; saturated (keep very limited)

Science of Sports Training:
Protein: 30%; Fat: 40%; Carbs: 30%
Fat priorities: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated; saturated (keep very limited)

South Beach Diet:
Protein: none specified (I don't believe); Fat: none specified (I don't believe); Carbs: none specified (I don't believe)
Fat priorities: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated; saturated (keep very limited)
General idea is to eliminate carbs except from veggies and milk at first, and then gradually reintroduce good carbs (high fiber, high nutrient)

Optimal Diet (Dr. Jan Kwasniewski): http://homodiet.netfirms.com/
Protein: 12%; Fat: 81%; Carbs 6%
Fat priorities: saturated (animal fat); monounsaturated, polyunsaturated (very limited)

PaNu (paleolithic nutrition--the modern version of what prehistoric humans would eat): http://www.paleonu.com/get-started/
Protein: not specified; Fat: not specified; Carbs: don't need them.
Fat priorities: saturated (animal fat); monounsaturated, polyunsaturated (very limited)

Each of these authorities agreed on three things: diet composition should be based on science; protein is necessary; and you should stay away from refined sugars and other low-grade carbohydrates. Their primary disagreements were the primary source of engergy (carbs or fat) and which fats should be consumed primarily (saturated or monounsaturated). Anyone (like me) looking for a general consensus on those latter issues is going to be frustrated.

Incidentally, you're more likely to die due to an accident, HIV infection, suicide, or homicide (combined), than to cancer or a heart attack. So maybe being extra careful, using protection, keeping your chin up, and your head down should be of more concern than achieving nutritional perfection. http://www.disastercenter.com/cdc/111riske.html
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Thomas Kurz » Jul 20, 2009 21:29

Corrections:

Animal fat is not all saturated. See food labels.

Barry Sears' Zone:
Protein: 30%; Fat: 30%"; Carbs: 40% (those are % of calories)

Science of Sports Training (which quotes Barry Sears and the original studies available when the SST was written):
Protein: 30%; Fat: 30%; Carbs: 40%
or
Protein: 27%; Fat: 40%; Carbs: 33%
(both based on Barry Sears' Zone)

BUT SEE Science of Sports Training, Proper Ratios of Macronutrients on page 111.

Dr. Kwasniewski has the most rational and clear explanation for the macronutrient ratio he has extensively tested in his medical practice. That ratio is:
Protein: 1 g; Carbohydrate: 0.8-1 g; Fat: 2.5-3.5 g.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Jul 21, 2009 14:36

Thanks for the corrections, and I have one of my own:

For PaNu, Dr. Harris states "Keep carbs around 10%, seek out animal fats, let protein come along for the ride and you will get close to these ratios, + or – 5% for each: 65-70% Fat, 20-25% Protein, and 10% carbohydrates. This may well be more protein than you need. No harm reducing it to 15% and adding more cream or butter." (item no. 1 on the list, click on "eliminating sugar" and scroll down a ways.) I must have been tired when I posted.

So, on the high end 53% of calories should come from carbs (USDA), and on the low end 0 - 10% (PaNu, Optimal).
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Sep 24, 2009 13:52

I've been eating according to the PaNu recommendations for about 2 months now (items 1-10 on the get started list, although I eat 3 meals a day). Here's what I've experienced thus far. My energy level is noticeably, but not hugely, higher, and it is more consistent throughout the day. In practical terms, this means I empty the dishwasher and perform other household chores more often than I used to. My performance in the gym does not appear to be affected by under-eating. Occasionally, I'll forget to bring part of my lunch to work. I'll get hungry around 4:00-ish, and workout from 6:00 - 7:00. In the past, that usually meant sluggish performance at the gym. Not now, though. Usually, a meal will last me between 5 and 6 hours. I have no idea how many calories I'm consuming. My adult acne has lessened materially.

I thought being "permitted" to eat foods laden with animal fat (like whipped cream) would lead to an abundance of flavor. It didn't. Fat tastes just as bland as grain. I also thought having fats supply the bulk of my calories would reduce cravings for goodies. Nope. Still wanted those chocolate chip cookies. I'm a natural at self-deprivation, though, so no problem for me. Oh, I lost about 4 pounds. I went from 164.6 to 160 (no clothes). I'm 5'9". Food bill went down. Per calorie, grains are more expensive than, say, cheese. Recycling stuff (like boxes) declined as well.

Unless something compels me to change my diet (I'm getting a physical in a few weeks), I'll probably continue eating according to the PaNu recommendation, although I'm not going to follow it rigidly--for example, my wife made a tasty corn and bean salsa, and I had a few bites last night. Also, we had friends over last weekend, and I enjoyed a bun with my hamburger and a very nice beer.

In addition to the PaNu guy, I've been following another blogger (http://blog.nutritiondata.com/ndblog/). She seems more even handed about the knowns and unknowns of nutrition. She doesn't recommend high, medium, or low carb, or anything. Her general recommendation is, eat what works for you.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Sep 28, 2009 08:40

CSta wrote:I thought being "permitted" to eat foods laden with animal fat (like whipped cream) would lead to an abundance of flavor. It didn't. Fat tastes just as bland as grain.


I should add that I'm not very good at cooking. Last night, however, I made tomato soup--chicken stock, heavy cream, and tomato paste--and it was mighty tasty.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Tmess » Oct 07, 2009 16:41

My Rant in response your Rant :o)

I have found myself looking for truth in food. But my approach is not based on science per say b/c so much scientific evidence is conflicting (note who the authors are of these scientific studies and see there affiliations - you'd been surprised by many conflicts of interest when you dig a little). I have been very confused and decided to cherry pick the concepts from my readings that I believed to be true based on my heuristic analysis.

These are my guiding principles:
1. Mostly fruits and vegetables - eat raw when possible (note: Corn is a grain >> see item 4)
2. Eat meat, eggs and fish occasionally (once or twice a week), but know the source i.e., ensure that it was raised correctly. For example, there is a big difference between farmed and non-farmed Salmon.
3. Avoid Dairy due to Insulin like Growth hormone (IGH) (e.g., cancer catalyst), implications of homogenization in milk (IGH delivery system) and allergy response when consumed (e.g., increased mucous production, inflammation, etc) see >> http://www.notmilk.com
4. Limit grains and legumes- some argue that there is also an allergy/inflammation response and that grains confuse the body satiation response (i.e., you overeat b/c your body can not discern that it is full).
5. Avoid GMO sourced food as implications are unknown (and why do humans think they can outwit Mother Nature)
6. Avoid processed food and foodstuff (just read the ingredients and see all the chemicals and marketing misnomers)
7. Give your digestive system a break every once in a while. It's ok not to eat for a day or two.
8. Avoid high sodium foods (usually in processed foods/foodstuff) b/c it can dehydrate among other things. Naturally occurring sodium in Celery and Coconut water is better source.
9. Drink when you are thirsty (assuming you limit sodium intake which can confuse your body) and before and after exercise
10. Eat until satiated
11. Avoid multi-vitamins - get your vitamins and minerals from whole foods and nature (see Kurz's Hindu squat video to see how he gets his vitamin D)
12. Try to keep blood PH neutral (body leaches minerals from body to maintain balance. So better to balance it through diet)

Also here are some other diets:
There is the 80/10/10 diet >> foodnsport.com/ >> Douglas Graham
80% carbs, 10% fat, 10% protein
No grains, no meat or dairy >> Raw Fruit with some vegetables >> fats and protein from Raw Nuts, Seeds or Fruit

Also, for Paleo aka Instinco -- there are different levels. Many avoid dairy as it is a modern invention. Others go raw (e.g., Sushi) only. >> http://rawpaleodiet.vpinf.com/rvaf-overview.html

Thanks,

Tmess
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Oct 21, 2009 13:07

I had blood drawn to check my cholesterol levels:

Total: 233
Good Chol: 46 (the letter sent to me said "ideal" is 60 or above)
Bad: 173 (the letter said 0-99 is best)
Triglycerides: 72 (the letter said below 150 is best)

Before I went for my physical, I had asked the PaNu guy (Dr. Harris) what I should expect. Here's what he said [my comments are in brackets]:

"Steve

get a baseline before you start [it was a little too late for that, as I had been doing the PaNu for a few weeks]

Insist on HBA1c fasting BG fasting insulin -most important indices - these will improve [didn't do]

Triglyecerides, HDL somewhat important and these will improve dramatically [ok on tris, not so good on HDL]

Blood pressure - usually improves [was fine]

LDL and total cholesterol - these are clinically meaningless in those without familial hypercholesterolemia. They may be transiently get "worse", especially in the short term (first several months of while losing weight) due to PaNu or similar diets.
These values may alarm you doctor. [They did, and my wife.] To prove they are not harmful you can give him a copy of GCBC [Good Calories, Bad Calories--a book) and direct him to this site and those on my blogroll, or you can do the easier but more expensive thing and have NMR lipoproteins at baseline and 6 months and 1 year later. This will prove LDL, if it is up, is due to large fluffies and not more particles.

Don't forget to have a Vit D level drawn too [forgot, but I've been supplementing with 4000-6000 a day, so I should be ok]"

Obviously, I didn't take Dr. Harris' note with me. Perhaps I should have.

Here's what I plan on doing, for my own sanity and for marital bliss: (1) Substantially reduce my saturated fat intake and replace some of it with monounsaturated fats (olive oil, almonds); (2) To make up for lost calories, more green veggies with some grains (double-fiber bread and high-fiber cereal primarily). I plan on keeping my macronutrient ratio around this: 20% protein; 50-60% fat; 20-30% carb. I'm going to have my blood work re-done in four months. On PaNu my ratios were about: 20% protein; 0-15% carb; and 65-80% fat.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Jan 25, 2010 15:28

It's been a few months since that last post. I've been quite conflicted about what to eat. In Gary Taubes article "What if It's All Been A Big Fat Lie?" http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/07/magaz ... gewanted=1, he says, after 11 pages of discrediting low-fat diet proponents,

After 20 years steeped in a low-fat paradigm, I find it hard to see the nutritional world any other way. I have learned that low-fat diets fail in clinical trials and in real life, and they certainly have failed in my life. I have read the papers suggesting that 20 years of low-fat recommendations have not managed to lower the incidence of heart disease in this country, and may have led instead to the steep increase in obesity and Type 2 diabetes. I have interviewed researchers whose computer models have calculated that cutting back on the saturated fats in my diet to the levels recommended by the American Heart Association would not add more than a few months to my life, if that. I have even lost considerable weight with relative ease by giving up carbohydrates on my test diet, and yet I can look down at my eggs and sausage and still imagine the imminent onset of heart disease and obesity, the latter assuredly to be caused by some bizarre rebound phenomena the likes of which science has not yet begun to describe.


I feel the same way. I've read more; I haven't gone back to the doctor to have my cholesterol checked, and I don't think I will for a while. I plan on getting the NMR lipoprotein particle count when I do. I hate to predict what I'm going to do, because (1) who cares, and (2) I may change my mind down the road, but for now, at least, it's back to PaNu.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Patrick Smith » Feb 11, 2010 23:41

I'm reading the book, "Enter the Zone" by Barry Sears and it's fabulous. The Zone diet has a balance of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fat. According to the numerous studies listed in the book, it is an almost perfect eating plan. I highly recommend reading it.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Feb 12, 2010 14:56

Patrick Smith wrote:I'm reading the book, "Enter the Zone" by Barry Sears and it's fabulous. The Zone diet has a balance of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fat. According to the numerous studies listed in the book, it is an almost perfect eating plan. I highly recommend reading it.


Before following Sears' recommendations, you may wish to consider other sources of information. I follow a few blogs:
www.peleonu.com
http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/
http://www.nutritiondata.com/ (blog in upper right hand corner)
http://blogs.webmd.com/cholesterol-management/
http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/news.html
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Patrick Smith » Feb 12, 2010 16:38

CSta wrote:
Patrick Smith wrote:I'm reading the book, "Enter the Zone" by Barry Sears and it's fabulous. The Zone diet has a balance of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fat. According to the numerous studies listed in the book, it is an almost perfect eating plan. I highly recommend reading it.


Before following Sears' recommendations, you may wish to consider other sources of information. I follow a few blogs:
http://www.peleonu.com
http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/
http://www.nutritiondata.com/ (blog in upper right hand corner)
http://blogs.webmd.com/cholesterol-management/
http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/news.html


I will, thank you for the links.

Have you tried the Zone diet, though? There are some studies in the book on athletes who used it for 6 weeks and it was extremely successful, plus everything Dr. Sears says seems so well backed up and explained. Here I am, once again trying to figure out who's right about sports nutrition. :evil:
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Feb 12, 2010 20:30

Patrick Smith wrote:I will, thank you for the links.

Have you tried the Zone diet, though? There are some studies in the book on athletes who used it for 6 weeks and it was extremely successful, plus everything Dr. Sears says seems so well backed up and explained. Here I am, once again trying to figure out who's right about sports nutrition.


I did, but not for long enough to draw any conclusions about it. As far as figuring out who is right about sports nutrition, I have a feeling you'll find a wide range of opinions. I've been looking for information just for general health purposes. On one end there are the high fat/low carb proponents who present pursuaive arguments, citing this and that study, regarding the ills of gluten grains and sugar and the life-saving aspects of saturated fat; and on the other you've got the USDA's food pyramid and virtually every practicing physician in the US who say that saturated fat will kill you and fruits, veggies, and whole grains will save your life. And then you've got Barry Sears and South Beach Dieters (written by a cardiologist) who fall somewhere in the middle.

I think the best anyone can recommend is, experiment with your diet and figure out what makes you feel best, stick with it, and pray it doesn't wind up killing you.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Patrick Smith » Feb 12, 2010 21:27

Yeah, I suppose so. Although I wish somebody would just get their act together and provide a huge amount of scientific proof that their nutritional plan works.

I'll keep researching.
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby CSta » Feb 14, 2010 16:57

Patrick Smith wrote:Yeah, I suppose so. Although I wish somebody would just get their act together and provide a huge amount of scientific proof that their nutritional plan works.

I'll keep researching.


I forgot to mention the American College of Sports Medicine. They issue position stands on various sports topics. They have one on nutrition. Here's the link to the position stand page. http://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/pages ... ectionId=1
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Re: Nutrition Rant

Postby Patrick Smith » Feb 14, 2010 20:42

CSta wrote:
Patrick Smith wrote:Yeah, I suppose so. Although I wish somebody would just get their act together and provide a huge amount of scientific proof that their nutritional plan works.

I'll keep researching.


I forgot to mention the American College of Sports Medicine. They issue position stands on various sports topics. They have one on nutrition. Here's the link to the position stand page. http://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/pages ... ectionId=1


Thank you for the link.

I am also reading the book, "Nutrition for Serious Athletes" by Dan Benardot, Ph.D. It is quite interesting, so far. I have the book, "Sports Nutrition Guidebook" by Nancy Clark, too, though I haven't started reading it yet.
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