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You Are What You're Tricked Into Eating 499

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Two prominent nutrition experts have put forth the theory that the current obesity epidemic is, in large part, the result of processed foods tricking our appetite control mechanisms. They argue that evolution has given humans a delicately balanced system that balances appetite with metabolic needs, and that processed foods trick that system by making foods high in fats and carbohydrates have the gustatory qualities of proteins. As the researchers put it, 'Many people eat far too much fat and carbohydrate in their attempt to consume enough protein.'"
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You Are What You're Tricked Into Eating

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  • Mantra (Score:4, Informative)

    by clard11 ( 468002 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @03:41AM (#46865887) Homepage

    "Eat Food. Mainly Plants. Not too much"

  • missed the point (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @03:51AM (#46865915)

    The experiment you mention is irrelevant. The TFA does not discuss how much protein is good for your health. You can surely reduce your protein intake and have no ill effects, as long as your caloric intake/outake are balanced.

    The TFA simply says that our bodies are tuned to crave for protein. Overprocessed foods have been tweaked to contain less protein because protein is expensive to produce.

    So, if your diet consists of overprocessed foods, you need to consume a disproportionately large amount of calories to satisfy that craving. This led to an obesity epidemic.

  • Re:Ass time (Score:4, Informative)

    by maxwell demon ( 590494 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @03:54AM (#46865927) Journal

    the cheaper food actually tasted even better

    A definite no. But then, I was not raised on industrially processed food; you tend to like the sort of food you were raised on.

  • Re:not only that (Score:5, Informative)

    by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @05:15AM (#46866105) Journal
    The problem for vegetarians (and more especially for vegans) is not getting enough proteins, it's getting all of the required amino acids (for some reason, the term 'a whole protein' is used to mean 'all of the essential amino acids'). For future reference, by the way, you need around 25g of protein per day, but it has to be balanced among 9 amino acids that the human body can't synthesise (the other 11 can be synthesised from those 9). It's not particularly hard to get all of them - in fact, if you're meeting your calorific quota and not starving then you probably are. Unfortunately, a lot of hippy-vegan recipes that seem to be closely associated with vegetarianism have a terrible mix, so you end up with 3-4 times RDA for some amino acids but only a small amount of others. This led to a lot of vegans in the '60s suffering from amino acid deficiencies, which has led to a belief that it's hard for vegetarians to get enough protein.
  • Re:"Enough protein" (Score:5, Informative)

    by jalopezp ( 2622345 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @05:21AM (#46866135)
    The CDC recommends 56g of protein for adult males, and 46 for females. The British Nutrition Foundation's RNI is 0.75g per kilogram of body weight. Proteins in diet provide essential amino acids which cannot be synthesized by our organism. Most people get more than enough protein, but getting too little is very very bad []. See also []. Now show us what you've been reading.
  • by guises ( 2423402 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @05:49AM (#46866201)
    Almost everything you said there is wrong. Broccoli has more protein per calorie than steak does [], and there are plenty of plants with tons of fat. In fact, healthier fats (mono and poly unsaturated) mostly all come from plants. Try some nuts or an avocado if you don't think you're getting enough fat. This is exceedingly unlikely though, since you don't really need much fat to get by. The recommended minimum is 15% of your calories, but it's not like you're going to die within three months if you don't eat any fat - this guy [] didn't consume any calories at all, including fat, for 382 days with no ill-effects.

    Your statements about carbs are a little difficult to deal with, "one of the main contributors" is a hard statement to disprove. Really, type 2 diabetes is (mostly) caused by obesity and certainly you can get fat by eating carbs. But you can get fat by eating too much of anything. It's how much you eat (calories), not how you eat it [], that determines how much weight you loose. Fad diets, like a low carb diet, do work, but they work by restricting your calories, not by some special voodoo.
  • by flyingfsck ( 986395 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @06:34AM (#46866329)

    The word is ketosis. It is spelled totally different from voodoo. []

    If you restrict carbs, you force your body to process fat, which is the whole idea.

  • Re:Sugar (Score:4, Informative)

    by taiwanjohn ( 103839 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @08:24AM (#46866757) also a major culprit in this story, in part due to the "low-fat" orthodoxy that developed in the 1970s. When you take out the fat, you lose a lot of the flavor, so sugar was used to make processed foods more appealing. Even worse, hydrogenated vegetable oil was used as a fat replacement. (Turns out that saturated fats are not as bad as they thought back then.) Another problem with processed foods is that they contain far less fiber, since removing the fiber is an easy way to extend shelf life. But this affects the way they are digested and absorbed, exacerbating the bad side effects.

    Dr. Robert Lustig has an excellent lecture [] about sugar and how it is the single most important change in our diet in the last few decades, and the chief cause of rising obesity and diabetes rates. (The above link is a TED Talk, he also has several long format lectures available on YouTube.)

    The author Michael Pollan has a simple set of 3 rules for managing your nutrition: 1. Eat food*; 2. Not too much; 3. Mostly plants.

    * What he means by this is "real" food, rather than the "edible food-like substances" that constitute the bulk of the American diet. He has a simple rule for identifying real food: If you've ever seen it advertised on TV, it's probably not real food. Also, for various reasons, there is an inverse relationship between the "realness" of food and the distance it travels from its source to your plate.

  • by cryptizard ( 2629853 ) on Tuesday April 29, 2014 @10:28AM (#46867809)
    No, you have to read carefully. He said per calorie.

"I will make no bargains with terrorist hardware." -- Peter da Silva