Friday, 25 May 2012

Testing hypotheses - a rant.


My brain just exploded! On Why conventional view of obesity / FR is wrong, ItsTheWoo wrote "...there is not a doubt in my mind obesity is entirely 100% an illness, a disorder... "

According to ItsTheWoo's hypothesis, the increasing incidence of obesity all around the world since 1970 is 100% caused by the increasing incidence of illness all around the world since 1970. Seriously, WTF?

According to Nigeepoo's hypothesis, the increasing incidence of obesity all around the world since 1970 is significantly caused by the increasing influence of Crap-in-a-Bag/Box/Bottle (CIAB) manufacturers on the population by cunning marketing and on the Government by bribery lobbying since 1970.

The former results in increasing consumption of CIAB and the latter results in increasing subsidies on the raw materials used for manufacturing CIAB, making CIAB cheaper (also more profitable) than natural foods, thus increasing consumption of CIAB. See Why are Twinkies cheaper than carrots?

There are other factors causing increased obesity e.g. increasing numbers of towns/cities which discourage walking. See also Determinants of the Variability in Human Body-fat Percentage.

Highly-engineered and highly-calorific CIAB encourages subconscious over-eating via Food Reward. The hyper-secretion of insulin (compensatory hyperinsulinaemia) caused by the subconscious over-eating of CIAB causes subconscious under-moving by inducing drowsiness and lethargy, sometimes followed by the munchies if blood glucose goes too low. Insulin is just a hormone that is secreted for the storage of stuff and a reduction in the burning of stuff. Don't blame insulin for doing its job. If you have zero insulin (e.g. untreated type 1 diabetes), your body stops storing stuff and starts burning stuff uncontrollably. Before the invention of insulin injections, people with type 1 diabetes usually died within 2 years.

Subconscious over-eating is good for the profits of CIAB manufacturers. An increasing number of dyslipidaemic/hypertensive/depressed/diabetic/demented/w.h.y. people is good for the profits of health-care providers and drug manufacturers. These organisations currently make huge profits, so it's not going to be easy to change anything that will reduce them.

I deleted the last part of my rant as it was a bit too ranty, but I'm reinstating it in a toned-down form as I've mentioned it in the comments.

ItsTheWoo continually conflates subconscious over-eating and under-moving with conscious over-eating and under-moving (gluttony and sloth). The vast majority of over-fat people become over-fat due to subconsciously over-eating and under-moving. A tiny minority of over-fat people are gluttonous and slothful.

Telling people to consciously Eat Less, Move More doesn't work. This doesn't mean that Eat Less, Move More doesn't work. It means that Eat Less, Move More has to be done subconsciously. This is where low-carb/paleo/real food diets come into their own.

Rant over.

18 comments:

Fenton said...

Not sure I follow the logic, Nigel. Lung cancer is 100% a disease. Doesn't preclude a role for both cigarette manufacturers and the government in cause and prevention, surely.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Hi Fenton,

I don't think that you can equate lung cancer with obesity. The first is definitely a disease. The second is purely the result of chronically consuming more nutrients than are burned.

I deleted the last part of my rant as it was a bit too ranty. I basically accused ItsTheWoo of continually conflating conscious over-eating and under-moving (gluttony and sloth) with subconscious over-eating and under-moving. The vast majority of over-fat people become over-fat due to subconsciously over-eating and under-moving. Telling people to consciously Eat Less, Move More doesn't work. This doesn't mean that Eat Less, Move More doesn't work. It means that Eat Less, Move More has to be done subconsciously. This is where low-carb/paleo/real food diets come into their own.

And don't call me Shirley! ;-p

Fenton said...

Hey Nigel - sure, I'm not trying to directly compare the two. Just pointing out your comment at Woo's site "And thus you completely absolve food manufacturers & the Government of all blame." doesn't follow, even if she's right. Something can be 100% a disease and you still have plenty of blame to assign!

Ah, Airplane ;)

Nigel Kinbrum said...

ItsTheWoo states that she believes obesity to be 100% an illness/disease/disorder. I disagree 100%!

A small percentage of the population have illnesses/diseases/disorders that increase their food consumption and reduce their metabolic rate. Prader-Willi syndrome is one condition that comes to mind, but that affects less than 0.01% of the population. Some people have hypothyroidism, some are on medications that mess with their VMH's or blood glucose stability and so on.

The vast majority of over-fat people subconsciously eat too much and move too little. However, Woo sees that statement as a gross insult, due to her continual conflation.

I'm not criticising the use of low-carb diets to get people to Eat Less, Move More by a) reducing over-eating caused by the drug-like effects of junk food on their brains (Food Reward) and by b) reducing drowsiness & lethargy & subsequent munchies by stabilising blood glucose & insulin levels.

However, calories still count!

Woo referred to Peter (Hyperlipid)'s FIRKO post. I'm sure I established in the comments section of that post that rodents have large amounts of BAT due to their much higher area:volume ratio compared to humans. Therefore, stopping excess nutrients from being stored in WAT merely results in up-regulation of BAT & a change in rodent behaviour so as to dissipate the extra heat generated without affecting their body temperature (e.g. less huddling together to conserve body heat).

Therefore, Woo's conclusions are completely invalid.

That Airplane joke always makes me laugh.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Referring to your original point:-

If obesity is an illness/disease/disorder, that doesn't absolve food manufacturers & the Government of blame. I was a bit incandescent with rage at the time and didn't think things through clearly.

Sorry about that!

Galina L. said...

I left a comment of a Wooo's blog that there are a lot people now who are overweight but would be thin 100 years ago. We all mix in population, but may have different underlying conditions.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Hi Galina,

I saw the comment on Evelyn's blog about how obesity was 100% genetic.

Our genes haven't significantly changed since 1970 (or even 1870). Our environment has. Changing the environment back to a more natural one is going to be extremely difficult, as it impacts the huge profits made by CIAB manufacturers, health "providers" & drug companies.

They're not going to accept that without a fight, especially in the US where money appears to be more important than anything else. The FDA are so in the pockets of the above organisations that they're going around forcibly confiscating raw milk on the grounds that a) it's dangerous (it isn't) and b) you're not free to eat & drink whatever you want (you should be).

Meanwhile, a Twinkie bar is cheaper than an organic carrot.

Cheers, Nige

Galina L. said...

Nigel, I grew-up in a society without fast or prepared food,the people there were not free from the deceases of Western civilization and from gaining weight later in life. After moving from Russia, our family continued to eat the food I cook from scratch every day, and I know a lot of people who do the same in US and Russia. It is not enough for being thin and healthy in many cases especially when people get older.
I agree that the the fast food availability and promotion makes things much worse, but it doesn't explain all what is wrong.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

I agree, which is why I wrote "...the increasing incidence of obesity all around the world since 1970 is significantly caused by..."
I'm getting crafty in my old age!

Words mean things, which is why ItsTheWoo annoys me when she leaves out crucial words like "Most" at the beginning of a sentence, because it was "implied". We're not mind-readers!

Non-sourdough breads have been around for about 400 years. Refined sugar has been around for about 100 years. Ditto for refined vegetable oils. Unfortunately, so many things have changed over the years that it's difficult to work out what's good and what's bad.

Modern medicine has increased length of life without necessarily increasing quality of life, so lifespan statistics are meaningless.

Kade Storm said...

"Modern medicine has increased length of life without necessarily increasing quality of life, so lifespan statistics are meaningless." - Nigel Kinbrum

This. . . is just so fuckin' true!

Simon Carter said...

Hi Nigel,
What are your suggestions for subconsciously eating less and moving more?

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Hi Simon,

See where I wrote "It means that Eat Less, Move More has to be done subconsciously. This is where low-carb/paleo/real food diets come into their own."?

The answer to your question is "low-carb/paleo/real food diets. :-D

RE Real food diets: Insulin-sensitive and/or reasonably-active people usually do better on higher-carb, lower-fat diets. Carbs should be obtained from "safe" sources such as roots, shoots, fruits, tubers, rice etc.

Insulin-resistant and/or sedentary people should do everything in their power to increase their insulin sensitivities & activity levels. See

Insulin Resistance: Solutions to problems and

Eat Less, Move More: Solutions to problems.

Cheers, Nige

George Henderson said...

Because if it's all a disease and no-one has any personal responsibility at any level, then why are we all looking for advice about what to do about it?
"Subconsciousness is a nightmare from whch I am trying to awaken..."
with apologies to Jimmy Joyce.

Some people, given environments that are not conducive to exercise, refuse to relax. They kneel or squat on the floor rather than sit in chairs, fidget with every utensil or device, do everything standing up, and the environment does not constrain their energy expenditure. This is a (probably genetic) inborne trait of many who are naturally lean, but aspects of it can no doubt be learned.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Hi George,

Some skinny people also appear to have less obsession with food in general. Maybe they have a worse sense of smell/taste, and/or they get less pleasure from eating, but they just eat to live.

Cheers, Nige

Galina L. said...

I can testify from my personal n=1 experience, that before I started a LC diet food was more irresistible for me, my appetite was more stronger,hunger was impossible to tolerate, I think even the same things tasted better before than now. It happened gradually, especially after I got adopted to practicing IF. Now even food high on carbohydrates do not turn me into previous hungry person.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

LC diets are pretty good, eh? I still binge on CIAB if I eat the stuff, so I practice avoidance in the media and when I'm out shopping. Luckily, I live in a small town, so I'm not bombarded with CIAB ad hoardings & fast food shop signs.

Galina L. said...

When ladies were discussing anorexia, I red comments, but didn't take part in discussion because I was never interested in the subject, never saw an actual anorexic. However, after the reading I started to wonder, am I getting into anorexic category myself? Literally, anorexia means the lack of appetite, and I lack it most of the day, on scale of 0 to 10 it is never higher than 2 or 3, it just disappeared. I still can't believe it. Of course, I continue eating because it is a pleasant activity, but how I feel now is so much different compare how it was before! I completely immune now not only to advertisement of food but even to smells. I recently started to bake rye sourdough bread for mine husband again, and don't eat it myself without any effort. I think it is sort-of abnormal, but preferable to the abnormal desire to eat which used to plague me most of my life.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Anorexia is nothing to worry about. Anorexia Nervosa is the Eating Disorder (ED).

If you think that you are fatter than other people think you are, you may be on the way to an ED.

If you think that you are as slim as other people think you are, no problem!