Talenti Gelato

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Truth be told, I’m not totally on board the Haagen-Dazs train when it comes to the “healthiest” or “cleanest” commercial ice creams. I spent three years eating a diet with an astronomical amount of fat – typically 300 grams of fat per day – much of it from cream, milk, and butter. I didn’t even get a t-shirt for this great feat of human extremism, which is unfortunate because my body odor was so strong on this diet I could have used a few extra shirts.

So when it comes to eating ice cream, I’m not in search of the richest, most fatty ice cream even if there are only 5 simple ingredients – milk, cream, eggs, sugar, and vanilla like that found in Haagen-Dazs vanilla. If I want to feel good (better, faster, harder, stronger) I eat more carbohydrate – only eating enough fat to keep calories high, the food palatable, and my mood solid.

So when I look for ice cream, I like something with more sugar and less fat. This is precisely what Gelato is, and stores nationwide are now selling Talenti Gelato which I greatly prefer over Haagen Dazs for my own physiology and lifestyle demands.

Now before you nutrazis cringe in disgust at my dietary lenience, please understand that, at the end of the day, I am now starting to believe that one could rehabilitate their metabolism with ice cream just as effectively, if not more effectively, than without it. If I had to cast all my beliefs aside and pick one food that unanimously causes more heat generation, and a warm buzz of heat that radiates out to the fingers and toes, there’s simply no question in my mind that ice cream is that food. It makes me feel like I’m going to spontaneously combust, and my heart rate races up to resting levels I’ve never known (over 60 bpm, wow, getting up almost to normal!).

I certainly believe that I would have fared much better on the gelato diet (don’t worry, I’m not considering this!) than the milk diet, having more metabolic stimulation with far fewer negatives such as congestion, constipation, increase in allergies, etc.

Anyway, I’ve tremendously enjoyed the metabolic stimulation of Talenti Gelato as of late. The coconut flavor is excellent and full of coconut, which I view as a metabolic bonus – especially for you coconut oil haters. And recently I tried their Sea Salt Caramel flavor which, to those that haven’t been pounding fruit and juice for over a month, would find disgustingly sweet (it’s only 39% fat by percentage of calories). But when the first 6 ingredients are caramel, milk, sugar, cream, eggs, and coconut oil – ya can’t complain. Sure, there are some gums added to it, but ultimately I’d rather eat guar gum and feel good than eat Haagen-Dasz and feel congested and have chest pain (I’ve noticed that adding sugar to dairy can really improve my reaction to it – the more sugar the better).

Anyway, that’s about all I have to say about that. I certainly get excited about the prospect of having the 180DegreeHealth metabolism enhancement program discussed in how to RAISE YOUR METABOLISM containing a new element of total lenience and the incorporation of a lot of “favorite foods” such as ice cream, pie, fruit juice, fruit, and so forth that were previously excluded. This would open it up to a much broader segment of the population in need of metabolic health enhancement, remove a lot of the intimidation and inconvenience behind the program, and create much deeper psychological and emotional healing with people’s relationship with forbidden foods. Recently watching someone lose four pounds in two weeks with a visible reduction in hypothyroidism-induced edema around the eyes and cheeks eating half a pie for breakfast and gelato for dinner has been an eye-opener (no pun intended).

Soon we’ll discuss some of the unique properties of sucrose that really intrigue me, one in particular that Ray Peat (poor sucrose’s only fan) has not discussed as far as I’m aware, that I have personally overlooked since the beginning, and what I find to perhaps have the greatest significance.

120 Comments

  1. Honestly, I'm a fan of good ol' Breyers. It's not overly rich like HD can be, and the majority of its flavors have a "clean" list of ingredients too.

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  2. I love gelato! The fattier the better, I say. Every now and again, I'll pick some up on a road trip and "take it to the dome." Pretty satisfying food.

    Matt, regarding your body odor on the high-fat diet, I'm curious how much protein you were eating. My experience has been that it isn't necessarily fat that causes my body odor — it's too much meat. A lot of fat is great at giving me horrible breath, though. Also, I wonder whether the odors are related to digestive issues…?

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  3. Oh man, oh man… 180 degree indeed. :-) Really hope that your arguments are good, and that you be as truthful as it's possible about the effects this diet will have (long term?). Anyway, this seems REALLY interesting!

    Which is a bummer, because I suffer from salicylate sensitivity (and I hate it), among other things. So for now I'm mostly stuck with good old HED…

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  4. Are you saying that higher resting heart rates are better? But don't top athletes have really low resting heart rates?

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  5. Please say that person was eating key lime pie! :P

    We are fortunate to have Pino Gelato (small-ish chain) in town who makes about 12-15 flavors fresh each week, rotating in seasonal novelties. Even frozen gelato cakes!

    One thing I find interesting about gelato is that the flavors are much more intense than in ice cream, therefore, I don't to eat as much to get the warm fuzzies. My theory is that the high fat content in ice cream competes with the taste buds/ pleasure sensors. So two little scoops (about the size of a tangerine) is plenty to send one into raptures.

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  6. Maybe if enough people wrote to the company, they'd look at changing to recipe to remove the guar gum. The rest of the ingredients look great!

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  7. Welp I took this advice and picked up some gelato today and OH MY GOD IT IS THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER TASTED

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  8. so to raise metabolism quickly is better to avoid starch almost completely and bingeing on sucrose or what lol??

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  9. @Veiled Glory,

    Re: gelato's intense flavor:

    "Churning during the freezing process [for gelato] incorporates air into the mix. The added air is called overage. Unlike most commercial ice cream, which contains up to 100% overage, the overage in gelato is low, generally 20-35%. Lower overage results in a denser product with more intense flavors."

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelato

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  10. "create much deeper psychological and emotional healing with people’s relationship with forbidden foods"……… Best reason ever to dust off my ice cream maker!

    I've got the raw cream to do it with too.

    To all you homemade ice creamers out there, Do you use whole eggs or just the yolks??

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  11. Lisa, just the yolks.

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  12. Ray Peat on the difference between starch and sugar:

    "Starch and glucose efficiently stimulate insulin secretion, and that accelerates the disposition of glucose, activating its conversion to glycogen and fat, as well as its oxidation.

    Fructose inhibits the stimulation of insulin by glucose, so this means that eating ordinary sugar, sucrose (a disaccharide, consisting of glucose and fructose), in place of starch, will reduce the tendency to store fat.

    Eating “complex carbohydrates,” rather than sugars, is a reasonable way to promote obesity. Eating starch, by increasing insulin and lowering the blood sugar, stimulates the appetite, causing a person to eat more, so the effect on fat production becomes much larger than when equal amounts of sugar and starch are eaten.

    There isn't anything wrong with a high carbohydrate diet, and even a high starch diet isn't necessarily incompatible with good health, but when better foods are available they should be used instead of starches.

    For example, fruits have many advantages over grains, besides the difference between sugar and starch. Bread and pasta consumption are strongly associated with the occurrence of diabetes, fruit consumption has a strong inverse association."

    http://raypeat.com/articles/articles/glycemia.shtml

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  13. I'm really skeptical of all this sugar mania.

    First of all, what happens when children are raised on it? Don't we already know that the results are disastrous: demineralized bones, compromised facial structure, behavioral problems, overall failure to reproduce the parents' hereditary blueprint, etc.? I should know, because I'm one of these people, and moreover, I've never met anyone who went through their developmental years with ample sugar in the diet who didn't show clear signs of physical degeneration.

    Second, from wikipedia: "It increases alertness, concentration, energy, and in high doses, can induce euphoria, enhance self-esteem, and increase libido." Sounds great, right? Well, that's taken from the article on methamphetamines. Shall we conclude that a little daily meth use makes a healthy addition to a whole foods diet?

    You might have all kinds of great short-term benefits from eating sugar, but in the long run, how do you know this won't come at the cost of depleting your organ reserves and causing you any number of avoidable health problems in ten or twenty or thirty years?

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  14. Mike Jones,
    Could you please cite some evidence for your claim that sugar is responsible for: "demineralized bones, compromised facial structure, behavioral problems, overall failure to reproduce the parents' hereditary blueprint, etc?"

    I know you are probably referring to Weston A. Price. But what Price showed is not that a diet high in sugar causes those things, but a diet of refined foods which included only a small amounts of minerals and vitamins, and was much higher in PUFA.

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  15. I honestly haven't had a single benefit from binging on fruits yet, aside from feeling extremely warm all the time if you think thats a good thing, even though my measured basal temp is still lower now than when I used to measure before. I had a great rush of energy on the very first morning I started doing this, but haven't experienced anything like it since. I'm sticking with this solely because it somewhat resembles what I went through when I first began RRARFing, and I was forever better off after riding it out.

    I'm also wondering how Matt is re-evaluating his childhood experiences since I know he's written some before about how adding just a little refined sugar to a diet of otherwise very wholesome foods ruined his health as a kid.

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  16. By the way, Peat seems to think that sucrose stimulates the thyroid more than starch, but how does he justify this? There's nothing in the "glycemia, starch and sugar in context" article about why sugar would be better than starch in this regard.

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  17. Hi Matt,
    Please make your background white so I can read it a work and look like I am at work.
    I can't get away with it when it is black. It is just too risky. My co-workers and I love reading your blog, but have micro-managers.
    thanks!

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  18. This is what Ray Peat said in an email when I asked him about ice cream:

    I used to eat huge amounts of commercial ice cream, but the good brands were forced out of the market by the junk brands, and now Haagen Dazs is the only one without dangerous additives, and its fat content is extremely high, so I prefer to make my own. Using coconut oil, the texture can approximate Haagen Dazs. Gelatin can be used for a variety of other desserts.

    I would love to make my own ice cream, as here in New Zealand additive free ice cream is outrageously expensive. Does anyone have an ice cream recipe using coconut oil??

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  19. But did it give you 'gelato weiner', kinda squishy and then it melts into puddle?
    xo
    the MILF of all Hags

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  20. A puddle. and I am not even on my iphone. Damn fingers.

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  21. Haagen Dazs Five has no additives and less fat than regular Haagen Dazs.

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  22. I am having problems with mucous (is this what you mean by congestion?) in my throat and I am eating a lot more dairy – same amount of sugar as usual – but then I have had a lot of mucous in my lungs from some miserable virus all winter so perhaps it is just all coming out now – perhaps it is nothing to do with the dairy. Do you feel confident dairy gives you congestion Matt? The milk diet was such an extreme (I stopped following your blog for a while when you did that as just the idea of living off milk for days on end made me want to throw up!) that I don't think you can blame milk for causing congestion – perhaps congestion is just how your body reacts when it is under stress (which a milk fast would surely cause).

    Undertow I noticed on the last post you said your blood glucose went up on fruit more than it did on starch and yet I am finding the exact opposite. Fruit keeps my bg around 80 – 100 max and yet starch I can go up to 180/90. Are you eating fruit with protein? I nearly always do – just out of habit.

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  23. could you get the same effects of icecream from a smoothie made with cream, fruit, egg and maple syrup or ripe banana rather than refined sugar?

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  24. dinosaur, Fruit and juice together with small amounts of gelatin, spiked it higher then normal. Also tried unrefined starchy mixed meal with some ice cream; BG readings skyrocket with that combo… but I pretty much expect that.

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  25. Endorsing an ice cream diet.. I'm all for it! I had no problem with weight loss several months ago while virtually having a pint, sometimes 2, of Ben and Jerry's every evening, exercise (and my youth) withal. My blood work came back just fine.

    That being said, I've had Talenti's Double Dark Chocolate and love it.

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  26. Mike Jones, while I'm skeptical about all the info blaming sugar, specially unrefined sources, for the problems of modern civilization, I do remember Price saying that only a partial substitution of traditional foods with "modern foods" was enough to cause significant degeneration in a population (at least dentally). Though what did he mean by partly, I dont really know. It's also good to remember that in that time (pre-Ancel Keys) refined PUFAs were much less of a problem than today I believe, and all throughout the book that is reflected in 0 mentions of "refined oil", "refined fat", or "vegetable oil. Source: http://fliiby.com/file/786912/nvqt4uq7vj.html

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  27. Ice cream might raise your metabolism, but since I don't want to look like or have the metabolism of a sumo wrestler, has anyone looked into the hcg diet? Do the hormones offset the low calorie intake?

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  28. I've upped my sugar consumption recently thanks mainly to this blog. But man am I feeling it – Stomach problems like you wouldn't believe – after eating something it seems to go out the other end almost instantly lol.

    Is this a passing phase, or do I abandon ship pronto?

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  29. Jannis,

    First, by "sugar" I mean refined sugar and not the carbohydrates in whole fruits. Some people seem to conflate the two; just to be clear, I do not.

    Yes, I'm referring to Weston Price's research, and also to the obvious degeneration everywhere apparent among sugar eaters. I know a 3- and a 6-year-old, for example, who are always eating ice cream, popsicles, chocolate, etc. Other than abundant sweets, they get whole milk and home-made meals (meat, fish, fresh vegetables) cooked in butter, but they usually only pick at these foods while continually clamoring for dessert. Both are unusually temperamental and complain about barely having energy to walk around the block and one already has eczema. Now here's the real kicker: their parents are just about the most perfectly built, physically beautiful couple I have ever seen. These kids ought to turn out the same, but the effects of their regular sugar bingeing already suggest otherwise.

    Also, have you read Nutrition and Physical Degeneration? I have, and like EL 66K mentioned, I don't remember seeing one mention of high-PUFA foods like vegetable oil. What I do remember are repeated indictments of white sugar, white flour, syrups, jellies, and other sweeteners. If you can point me to any pages in Nutrition and Physical Degeneration that suggest that sugar is benign, that the suffering peoples were all eating high PUFA diets, and that PUFA alone was to blame, please do so.

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  30. @ sirhc

    While Ray Peat’s articles are certainly interesting and thought-provoking, but I find that a lot of his ideas don’t quite agree with modern research findings. For example: there is some concern that fructose may play a role in obesity, precisely because it doesn’t stimulate insulin release as much as glucose. You see, insulin stimulates leptin release from adipocytes, and leptin, as you probably know, inhibits appetite. Thus more fructose (compared to glucose or starch) leads to less insulin and less leptin, which possibly leads to less appetite suppression and a greater intake of calories. So when Peat writes “Eating starch, by increasing insulin and lowering the blood sugar, stimulates the appetite, causing a person to eat more, (…)”, it seems like a nice theory, but the totality of research available today indicates that things are far more complex than that, and that that statement is probably incorrect.
    If you want to look at some studies, try these: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9568685 or http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15181085

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  31. Weston A. Price complained quite a bit about "vegetable fat": i.e., "It is of interest that the diets of the primitive groups which have shown a very high immunity to dental caries and freedom from other degenerative processes have all provided a nutrition containing at least four times these minimum requirements; whereas the displacing nutrition of commerce, consisting largely of white-flour products, sugar, polished rice, jams, canned goods, and vegetable fats have invariably failed to provide even the minimum requirements."

    He mainly complained about food stripped of nutrients, including canned food. Interestingly, though, the children he rehabilitated though nutrition had 1 meal/day at his center. The other 2 were at home with white bread, sugar, margarine, etc. They were still healed with the 1 good meal/day.

    And he included fruit juice and fruit in the good meal.

    Personally, I think a mix of starch and sugar (mostly natural and unrefined) is probably best. That's what people have done throughout history.

    -Amy

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  32. Here's more on what he fed the children in his care:

    "Under the stress of the industrial depression the family dietary of the children shown in Fig. 97 was very deficient. They were brought to a mission where we fed them one reinforced meal at noon for six days a week. The home meals were not changed nor the home care of the teeth. The preliminary studies of each child included complete x-rays of all of the teeth, a chemical analysis of the saliva, a careful plotting of the position, size and depth of all cavities, a record of the height, and weight, and a record of school grades, including grades in deportment. These checks were repeated every four to six weeks for the period of the test, usually three to five months. It is important to note that the home nutrition which had been responsible for the tooth decay was exceedingly low in body building and repairing material, while temporarily satisfying the appetite. It usually consisted of highly sweetened strong coffee and white bread, vegetable fat, pancakes made of white flour and eaten with syrup, and doughnuts fried in vegetable fat.

    The nutrition provided these children in this one meal included the following foods. About four ounces of tomato juice or orange juice and a teaspoonful of a mixture of equal parts of a very high vitamin natural cod liver oil and an especially high vitamin butter was given at the beginning of the meal. They then received a bowl containing approximately a pint of a very rich vegetable and meat stew, made largely from bone marrow and fine cuts of tender meat: the meat was usually broiled separately to retain its juice and then chopped very fine and added to the bone marrow meat soup which always contained finely chopped vegetables and plenty of very yellow carrots; for the next course they had cooked fruit, with very little sweetening, and rolls made from freshly ground whole wheat, which were spread with the high-vitamin butter. The wheat for the rolls was ground fresh every day in a motor driven coffee mill. Each child was also given two glasses of fresh whole milk. The menu was varied from day to day by substituting for the meat stew, fish chowder or organs of animals. From time to time, there was placed in a two quart jar a helping similar to that eaten by the children. This was brought to my laboratory for chemical analysis, which analysis showed that these meals provided approximately 1.48 grams of calcium and 1.28 grams of phosphorus in a single helping of each course. Since many of the children doubled up on the course, their intake of these minerals was much higher. I have shown in the preceding chapter that the accepted figures for the requirements of the body for calcium and phosphorus are 0.68 grams of calcium and 1.32 grams of phosphorus. It is obvious that this one meal a day plus the other two meals at home provided a real factor of safety. Clinically this program completely controlled the dental caries of each member of the group."
    -Amy

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  33. Duh, I didn't search for "vegetable fats".

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  34. oops, I accidentally posted this on the other blog entry.

    here it is:

    Sucrose is a significant component of most fruits and vegetables. Many fruits like apricots and pineapples have a majority of their sugars coming from sucrose. Sweet potatoes and carrots also have a majority of their sugars coming from sucrose.

    I hope it's not a contest between sucrose bashing and fructose bashing, since they're both wrong. And it would be hilarious if all the fructose bashers found out that sweet potatoes have a lot of it, through free fructose and sucrose (fructose+glucose).

    And I don't think a diet based on refined fats and oils is healthier than a diet based on refined sugars. You're still not getting many vitamins and minerals through your main source of calories, it is not healthier to base most of your diet off butter and coconut oil than it is to base most of your diet off maple syrup and honey.

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  35. On another note, I know if I eat sweets, I can literally feel my teeth rotting. Not the same when I eat fruit or sweet vegetables, my teeth feel the same and I don't have to brush. Those foods, even though they contain sugar, seem pretty safe for teeth. The refining of the sugar seems to be the main issue. For example the sweetener of the Hunza was a puree of dried apricots (high sucrose, 63% of the sugar in apricots is sucrose), but they started to use white sugar and tooth decay rose.

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  36. We make our own fruit gelato and it couldn't be easier: puree fresh organic strawberries in a blender, add maple syrup to taste and some lemon juice or orange juice if you like. Orange zest too if you want more orange flavor. Then stir in some raw organic cream. You could also use coconut milk. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to the instructions.

    But I must say I am also totally dubious of this recent sugar obsession. Whole fruit and even fresh juice is fine, and I think a good addition to RRARF. And perhaps we shouldn't be afraid of other natural sugar sources such as maple syrup and honey. But I will need a lot more evidence to believe that refined sugar can be a healing food.

    Most of all, though, I am becoming convinced that there is not just one best way to eat for everyone and we all have to somehow figure out what works for us personally. The problem is how to do that. There are so many methods out there being promoted: Dr. Mercola has his Nutritional Typing, D’Amato has his blood type diet, Amen bases his dietary recommendations on brain scans. The Rubins have their personalized method, whatever it is. But I suspect that if one were to figure out how one should eat based on each of these methodologies, one would get some pretty contradictory results, so how to decide which one to utilize is a challenge.

    Actually, I think it would be pretty interesting to figure out my supposed ideal diet based on each of these methodologies, (and I'm sure there are others out there also) then try each one and record the effects. This seems like an experiment that someone must have tried and blogged about. Anyone know of a web site? Like, trials and reviews of the various "typing" diets? Wish I had the time and money to do it myself!

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  37. Anyone familiar with Paul Rudnick and his all sugar diet? It's lean people like him that make it hard to demonize sugar as the cause of obesity. I think Matt is on to something.

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  38. CORRECTION: Paul Rudnick's all candy diet, not all sugar. It's not technically all candy, but it is very strange.

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  39. I like this blog as a place to get ideas, but I have to say these latest suggestions are going to blow up in alot of people's faces. It's odd to see a few short term anecdote's being extrapolated into dietary advice. People make this mistake all to often in the health blogosphear. (Oh look! I did such and such for 2 weeks and I feel great! Winning!).

    I think the original HED suggestions of protein and starch were far superior (and was based on a little more research…) for people with wacked metabolisms. Add me to the list of people who get terrible postprandial BG reading on simple sugars, but can do ok on starch. Also any kind of sugars, especially fruit, is just murder for my teeth, starches are bad too, but not nearly so.. I think sugar might be fine if you're already metabolically healthy and are eating an otherwise a nutritionally dense diet to make up for empty calories.

    Also, fwiw, I had much less B.O and no bad breath on low-carb. When I added starches back into my diet I had to definitely start brushing my teeth and wearing deodorant to compensate.

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  40. "Paul Rudnick's all candy diet, not all sugar. It's not technically all candy, but it is very strange."

    Hi Earthpet.
    Ha! I agree with the dietician who commenting on his food choices, said the body is indeed 'very adaptable!'
    I remember the fiesty Indian philosopher, UG Krishnamurti, once indicated that in his opinion – only partly tongue in cheek – that humans could survive on sawdust and glue if necessary, the glue being for flavour!

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  41. I have to agree with Anonymous and the others that are extremely skeptical of the latest sugar craze, and in all honesty I'm surprised to see Matt jumping on the bandwagon so quickly. Especially after what has been said a few times now, which seems to be some short term results turned into dietary advice.

    Fruit and fruit juices, OK, those are and always have been a given for me on the list of good, healthy foods.

    But refined sugar? Really?

    Perhaps used as a tool in your arsenal for short-term benefits like massive cheat days to stoke the metabolic fire, but eaten regularly as part of a healthy diet I just don't buy it.

    Worst of all is I can see so many people in the comments jumping all over the idea, using it as an excuse to eat junk.

    My teeth also hurt like a mofo if I eat refined sugar. That alone speaks volumes.

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  42. with paul ruddick there's basketball player and notorious candyman lamar odom

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  43. andrew with all the respects lamarvellous (lamar odom) LOL
    is on steroids if u take steroids u can eat whatever u want LOl is diet is full of pufas also because he eats ccoookies and other junk as well …
    paul ruddick eats 1500 calories a day LOL

    sugar can be beneficial but only ray peat in the entire world says that and now matt maybe ….

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  44. Mike Jones,
    Yes I read his book.
    Again, his research showed that a diet of processed foods with almost no vitamins and minerals causes physical degeneration. If people eat a diet that consists of syrup, white flour, vegetable oil, and sugar you can hardly say that it's the sugar that causes the problem.

    I know children who eat a lot of sugar like ice cream or fruit juices in combination with foods that are high in vitamins and minerals. And they are in very good health.

    I think sugar only becomes a problem, when it replaces too much other important foods, or is combined with dangerous stuff as in candy bars, chocolate and so on.
    Those contain not only sugar but also refined flour, a lot of PUFA, and almost always more than a dozen dangerous additives like carrageenan.

    I don't think that eating a lot of refined sugar is a good idea. Fruits are much better. But sugar is probably the safest of all refined foods.
    There is no evidence to the widespread belief that sucrose causes obesity, diabetes, insulin resistance or whatever. I haven't seen a single studies which validates any of these claims.

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  45. will healing metabolism reduce cellulite?

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  46. Ooooo, Jane, I hope that's affirmative…

    New here, with my little caveat. (Me, 45, female, hypothyroid.) I've had a sugar problem off and on for years. Last summer, it got reaaaalllly bad, and I wound up with PVCs and other heart symptoms, and the "sudden dread" type of panic attacks. Now, I was eating a bag or two of caramels a day, so maybe it was the type of sugar or some other factor, so just FWIW.

    On another topic, someone mentioned an anecdote about a kid with a pillowcase of M&Ms, which took me back 20 or so years to Geneen Roth's "Breaking Free from Compulsive Eating" where she suggests just going whole hog on all your forbidden foods until every food is "legal" and you start eating to feel good instead of binging. I never could get her program to work for me, quite, but I always appreciated her compassion.

    I'm loving this site and all the information! But while I'm now able to have sugar in moderation without a problem (knock wood), I'm not convinced it's a health food just yet…

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  47. Oh, I guess I was Lady Obvious above – just found Mr. Stone's other blog and saw the Geneen Roth post.

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  48. Why are people jumping on bandwagons so quickly? If Matt wrote a joke post on drinking gasoline, I think most commenters of this blog would be dead within an hour. Just months ago, everyone was praising the greatness of starch and low fat, low protein. Then, with a post about linoleic vs aracidonic acid, everyone ran to costco to get their 5 lb bags of nuts and swore off bacon. But, this time, we've found the true secret to health.

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  49. good….

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  50. I think most people would be surprised at the amount of sugar that ray peat actually eats. According to an indepth email from him in 2005 he only drinks one quart of orange juice a day and from what I could tell didn't really get sugar from too many other sources.

    I was trying to mimic his recommendations to my lifestyle and it just didn't work, my teeth started to degenerate pretty fast eating so much refined sugar(The rest of my diet was solid and I was meeting all nutrient reqs).

    Ray peat also claimed he needs 120-150g of protien a day, if he goes under 100g he doesn't feel right. I thought that was very odd.

    Ray peat definitely has some great info but I don;t think its the end all to be all.

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  51. Peat
    eats about 400g of carbohydrates a day. Three quarts of milk mean 150g of lactose. One quart of OJ are 90g of sucrose. The other approx. 160g of carbohydrates are refined sugar. He told me that he puts a lot of sugar in his milk and the coffee he drinks.
    He also still eats a good amount of ice cream and other sweets.

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  52. I'll share my story of switching from a low/moderate carb diet to a Peat diet, to a Matt inspired high starch, moderate fat and moderate protein diet and back to a Peat style plan. It wasn't pretty.

    Firstly I went from mod carb to Peat and gained 4-lbs, depending on the day/time of month. So I switched back to mod carb and then to high starch.

    I was TERRIFIED to go from mod/LC to high starch (especially after my Peat experience), but I really didn't gain any weight and I felt better and better. Within three months my fasting blood glucose had dropped from the mid to late 90s to the 75-85 range. I wasn't losing weight (weight and low temps still plague me) but at least I was weight stable on a healthy starch based diet. Then I decided to embrace Peat again, after having read a lot of his article. I did it for about three weeks and gained 4lbs and 1.5% BF.

    I figure that if one is eating a high PUFA diet before doing Peat that there will be major problems. Anyone I know that went from LC to Peat gained about 10% to 15% of their body weight.

    I am very depressed about my weight and Peat has just made that situation worse. Is there any solution to weight struggles besides low carb? I am dying to hear more from Matt on the HCG diet as people seem to have great experiences on it. However, I worry about the maintenance part of it, because most HCGers seem to do LC for maintenance.

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  53. lynn,
    what exactely do you mean by Peat?
    I doubt that he personally put the weight into your pockets, so what did you eat?

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  54. I ate potatoes, grass fed eggs (being careful to eat only 3 x day after asking his advice), milk, cheese, ripe bananas, coconut oil, apricots,dark chocolate, red meat once a day and ice cream. Yes, his plan did put weight on me. He was very helpful and responded to all my emails/questions, but his plan caused me to gain weight.

    I think all the PUFAs I was eating beforehand caused my problems. And sadly I seem to fit the pattern of all the low carbers I know in that we all gain weight going from LC to Peat. The two that I know that stuck out the weight gain eventually stabilised and one even lost weight after her gain. However, she had to temporarily take out the sugar and limit herself to one piece of fruit a day to lose. She reintroduced fruit after a few months.

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  55. Those of you looking for vanilla ice cream that's all natural (no guar gum either), there's a couple of others commercially available besides Haagen Daz. There's Turkey Hill all natural recipe vanilla and there's Blue Bunny all natural vanilla. These flavors tend to be hard to find but at least you have 2 more choices other than Haagen Daz that's truly all natural.

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  56. Props, I think Schwarzbein would agree with the sugar.

    Although, isn't there a risk that this would be a short term high? I read this post by an independant health researcher, warning! he is a bit of a douche

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  57. I think what really needs to be acknowledged here — particularly by a certain Mr. Stone — is that, when it comes to food, one size does not fit all. We are all so genetically and epigenetically variable that the only answer that truly works is the one that we find out for ourselves by listening to our bodies. Anyone that suggests through individual experience that everybody else should be doing what they're doing is completely misguided. What works for me might not work for you, and vice versa.

    I'm all for experimenting and questioning, and I also believe in paying careful attention to our bodies while doing so. Sometimes changes are temporary — whether good or bad. Sometimes changes indicate something malfunctioning in the body. For example, the anonymous poster above stated that his body odor was better on low-carb than a moderate carb diet, while Matt states the opposite. This kind of varied response happens frequently enough to lead me to believe that people are different. Who woulda thunk it? ;-)

    Nutrition and health will never be an exact science because people will never have exact and predictable physical tendencies. We are not robots, and we are part of a fluid and always changing environment. Body awareness and objectivity are key, in my opinion, in winning at the game of health.

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  58. lynn,
    Besides the bananas I think that this was a pretty good diet. Can you remember your macronutrient ratio? I think gaining some weight shouldn't be all you pay attention to. How did you fell overall? How was your sleep, and did your energy levels change?

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  59. lynn,

    prior to the low carb, had you been cutting calories at any point? – just wondering about damaged metabolism through that as well as from low carb, which led to weight gain when eating to appetite?

    Jane

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  60. Mishkam,
    Did Ray Peat give you the recipe for icecream with coconut oil and gelatin that he uses? Does anybody know of a good one?

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  61. I'm just waiting for Mr Stone to start drinking lots of coffee on top of all this!

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  62. To all of you people who think that you're going to improve your health by eating sucrose, ice cream etc. , YOU ARE IN DENIAL and need to stop jumping on such ludicrous bandwagons! Eat fruits, raw honey and safe root veggies instead…

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  63. To anonymous who asked about Ray Peat's ice cream recipe. No I didn't ask for the recipe from him unfortunately.

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  64. i am pretty sure that Peat still takes thyroid medication. he keeps his temp at 98.6. he can eat whatever the fuck he wants haha. i'd like to see him eat like that without it

    i think coffee is good though. peats caffeine argument seems pretty solid to me plus i'm having good experience with it.

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  65. Jannis – I didn't record macronutrient ratio because I have been trying to recover from 'dieting' and counting everything.

    Here is what I ate on Peat. It varied very little from day to day.

    Brunch: Scrambled eggs with sautéed potatoes in CO, tea and apricots
    Dinner: Beef chilli/beef steak/low PUFA fish with potatoes, milk, tea, apricot and dark chocolate
    Supper: Cheese, banana*, milk, apricots
    *What’s wrong with bananas? Peat said well ripened ones are fine.

    Sometimes I enjoyed ice cream after dinner too.

    I was so disappointed to have this reaction again, but as I said, I have seen this happen to others. I believe it was my high PUFA intake before Peat – seeds, too many eggs and pork sausage every day. Also I used to eat a LOT of chicken skin and nuts. Ugh!!!

    Typical high starch diet where weight was stable and I felt just as good:

    Brunch: Omelette with peppers/onions or tomato, pork sausage and gluten free bread, tea

    Dinner: Turkey/beef chilli/chicken curry/steak with potatoes; tea, dark choc

    Supper: Cheese with apple, popcorn, tea

    I felt GREAT on a high starch diet and GREAT on Peat too. However, to me, weight is all that matters because I have gotten to a place now where most of my symptoms are gone, aside from low basal temp and weight. I take thyroid but may need to switch to T3 only. I tried T3 only before, but couldn't tolerate much. When I got to the place where my temps were perfect and I was losing weight; I became extremely anxious and paranoid. The ultimate catch 22.

    Also, I have gained three dress sizes in the past year and cannot explain how upset it makes me feel. I am 5'5" and 170lbs this morning. I was 160 before trying Peat the first time. 150 before my thyroid went off – thanks to the crappy new armour.

    Shopping for another wardrobe in yet another size up is so traumatising. My life is passing me by at this weight, as I don’t like to leave the house when I am this size.

    Jane – The ONE good thing I did in my LC years was eat to satiety. This probably actually worsened my metabolism actually as I ate lots of high PUFA meat. :)

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  66. If you're thinking about sugar substitutes, DON'T get "stevia leaf powder" such as what Navitas Naturals sells. I learned that this is very bitter tasting (and smells like tea). Very disappointing purchase. I guess the powerful sweet taste of Truvia (which would be better to buy, just for your sanity) is a result of processing and the "natural" stuff is just as bitter as it is sweet. I feel like this is something you should know if you don't want to add real sugar to things.

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  67. Lynn, If you are willing to try drugs/hormones, I would look into dopamine agonists for weight loss as well. I have a small mention on my blog.. I think this area is potentially under-appreciated. T3 made me lose some muscle and replace it with fat ironically (I think mostly because it made me crave junk and I dropped my protein intake).

    I am finding the latest sugar promotions as amusing, but that's why I love this blog. I've experienced both effects when eating lots of ice cream and candy; heat generation without weight gain, and weight gain. I think it comes down to whether you are insulin sensitive and can get away with the sugar and calories and otherwise are getting the nutrients from somewhere or have the stores. Suggesting that ice cream and cheesecake are going to improve people's health is a huge stretch.. You may get a bump in metabolism, but with huge slippage.

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  68. Lynn, I forgot to mention you should also get you Omega 3/6 blood levels checked if you suspect that is an issue. I got mine a year ago or so and it was a very favorable 2.7/1 ratio. There are at home test kits that go for around $150 I think. Once I found out mine I knew to avoid O3 supplements since I just didn't need them and the cons outweighed the pros. Diagnostics seem so underrated on health blogs. Why guess?

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  69. Oww!!! God damn, just hurt my back jumping on another band wagon.

    But seriously, has Matt told everyone to start eating lots of sugar? I don't remember that.

    And if the comments section is full of people asking about eating more sugar, is that truly representative of what the large number of readers of this blog are doing?

    "I think what really needs to be acknowledged here — particularly by a certain Mr. Stone — is that, when it comes to food, one size does not fit all" Wha??? I think I must be reading another blog.

    I for one, after some initially fumbling when I discovered this blog, trying this then that, have now settled into a much happier routine. I know it won't happen for everyone but reading this blog has really made me calm down, embrace some of the confusion and relax into my diet changes as and when I make them.

    I have recently added some fruit and fruit juice to my diet again and it feels good. The real winner for me though is the Molasses which since I have started taking it has helped me rise from 35.1c (95.18f), where I have been hovering for 2 years to a mighty 36.2c ((avg)97.16f) in the morning -armpit style with some even bigger changes in the mouth temps. Heck, even some hair growth on my section of thinning hair. I am impressed and find fruit is just what I need to eat in the morning. I was really beginning to feel very heavy looking at a plate of starch in the morning. Cheers Matt and everyone else!

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  70. Yves – What do dopamine agonists do? How do they work? What happens when you stop taking them? Is there not a rebound effect? I will be on thyroid for life as I have Hashimotos so that doesn't bother me, but if a drug caused WL; surely I'd need it for the rest of my life. Same as any diet that works for WL usually needs to be followed for life to keep weight off. Hence the low success rate of starvation diets.

    I felt fanatic on T3 only; nice and warm, losing weight, loadsa energy, perfect basals. However pretty soon I crashed and went psycho. I later discovered my iron was low. I know Peat thinks low iron is good, but iron is part of the mechanism that delivers T3 to cells, so I can see how the low iron would cause probs on T3.

    Sugar really does seem to be the ultimate fat storer for me. I am insulin resistant, but since I have been eating lots of starch, my blood glucose has gone down so I bet my insulin levels are MUCH lower. I'm testing them at the end of April.

    I am 100% sure I have way too much omega 6 as I ate sooooooo many PUFAs over the years.

    I believe blood tests are extremely important. For example in 2010, I thought I must by hyper as I was getting a strange combo of hypo and hyer symptoms. I tested my bloods and discovered I had high RT3 and wasn't hyper at all. Without the bloods I would have continued to lower my thyroid and feel worse and worse. Also, without bloods I would never have known my iron was low.

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  71. Good point from terpol that Peat uses thyroid to maintain his 98.6 temp and I assume Matt was stable at 98.6 before doing the fruit/sugar additions. Perhaps one has to eat high starch to get to a stable 98.6 and at that point can eat the sugar although for how long Matt can maintain that without thyroid supplementation it will be interesting to see.

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  72. Robert,

    I think it's important to acknowledge that everybody is different. It's something I don't see Matt mention at all in his posts and comments. I used to hate when people said this because it meant that there wasn't one simple answer for everybody to follow, but after hearing 1,000s of health stories, now I see the truth in it.

    No, Matt's not outright saying to gorge on sugar. People hear what they want to hear. I think he is doing what he does best: experimenting with his own body as a way to discover his own truths about diet and health. I hope people see that they are his truths that work for him rather than "hop on the bandwagon" and feel discouraged when things don't work so well for them. Matt isn't them; they are not Matt. Just my opinion.

    Just watch out for Matt's Kool-Aid diet. And please be careful not to get sucked into Stonestown. ;-)

    One thing I do know is that this health and nutrition stuff gets murkier and murkier the more I study it.

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  73. Sucrose is natural, as I said it is found in fruits and vegetables as a significant, and sometimes primary, component of their sugars. Some fruits are very low in sucrose, such as grapes, but that is the exception. I agree that refined sugar is not healthy, but not because of sucrose.

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  74. Why would eating sugar necessitate thyroid supplementation? It seems to me the biggest danger with refined sugar is nutrient depletion from elevated metabolism, and I dont see how thyroid would help with that.

    Still haven't see any sugar supporter really address the extremely heightened levels of catecholamines seen on two weeks of a high sugar vs high starch diet. Matt isn't worried because the subjects on a high-sugar diet in that study built lean mass, but Matt also built lean mass on a low-carb diet which was ultimately destructive for his health. Peat seems to think its just a temporary effect to compensate for thyroid function, but what exactly does he mean by that? And why would only sugar have this effect and not starch? I e-mailed him two weeks ago asking him to elaborate on this but still haven't got any reply.

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  75. The 180 degree Civil War has officially started; traditional starch-ites on the one side versus the new up and coming sugar addicts on the other. :P

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  76. Ryan, I prefered your expression of your thoughts this time.

    No worries on being sucked in. I am acutely aware that this is a complicated subject with much room for individual response.
    Ever since I had chinese medicine for nosebleeds when I was younger and found myself shifted into a completely new sense of being a self and becoming 'at home' in my body I realised that there are aspects to the study of health and nutrition that lie outside the lenses of nutrition, medicine and scientific languages – those languages alternately affirming some aspects and hiding or obscuring others.
    I only wish I understood it further – the impact of some herbs on my entire experience of myself.
    Blimey, bed time.

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  77. Heres a live 24/7 feed of some eagles in nest: ustream.tv/decoraheagles
    Every so often, they eat.

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  78. "completely new sense of being a self and becoming 'at home' in my body I realised that there are aspects to the study of health and nutrition that lie outside the lenses of nutrition, medicine and scientific languages – those languages alternately affirming some aspects and hiding or obscuring others."

    Hi Robert
    neurochemical changes in brain via various meditation, contemplative, fasting, dream, shamanic practices, as well as drugs, herbs, even food, can initiate perceptive changes. Different 'gates' open and so how we perceive the world (and ourselves) can change dramatically.

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  79. I can understand sugar bashing but NOT fruit bashing. That always annoys me. We're omnivores, we are meant to eat fruit. Even carnivores like wolves are known to eat fruit in the wild, and they're carnivores (contrary to popular belief, carnivore doesn't mean they always only eat flesh).

    My dog (who died a week ago) LOVED fruit, especially apples. She would go mad begging for it (although I think she liked meat more). I knew it was healthy even for her to have as a snack.

    I don't support fruitarian diets for humans, that's too low in protein and fat. But cutting out all fruit from your diet is as silly as that. I guess I am a "radical omnivore" I don't take no bullsh*t from either side.

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  80. What I've learned from Matt's bandwagon-jumping-on is, watch and see what happens. I've pretty much stuck with my same diet from the get-go, but sometimes add something new. Ever since the low-fat phase I've kept my fat levels more moderate. I still use butter and cheese, but don't go crazy anymore. It just made sense to me. I never stopped eating fruit, but this was a good reminder that it's totally fine to have a fruit-only meal if you feel in the mood for it.

    I'm pretty un-extreme about my diet since my eating disorder recovery. I still eat white bread and pasta when I go out, I use white rice a lot.

    Oh, and when I was first in recovery and my appetite came roaring back, I ate lots of fat+sugar (I would literally mix up butter and brown sugar and eat it). I put on a lot of weight. You will if your metabolism is screwed up and you're starving.

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  81. Oh, forgot to sign my name. That was from Amy.

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  82. Amy, that sounds like an unhealthy way to recover from an ED. I don't think it's right. If someone becomes overweight after an ED, it will screw them up more. Having an ED is hell, but becoming fat after an ED has to be worse than any normal person becoming fat. Recovery shouldn't be about binge eating, you should gain enough weight to be healthier.

    I used to be *really* skinny (low-fat veganism can make you that way, especially if you eat very little). I wasn't anorexic, although everyone thought I was, so you could say I was treated exactly like one. So I can go on a long rant about "falsely accused anorexics" because I've been there. After all the pushing and shoving for me to eat (things I considered junk food, including foods that were not vegan) I still was vegan, but I started to gain more and more weight as I'd eat A LOT of new (mostly high in fat) foods. I had an addiction to hummus which I would eat with pita bread, cashews, and Smart Balance "butter". My dinner was a big plate of brown rice, peas/corn with a HUGE helping of the "butter". Most people would doubt that morbidly obese vegans exist, but that is what I eventually became.

    I went from underweight (115 lbs at my lowest for 5'9'') to obese (285 lbs). That's my life story and it SCREWED ME UP. My mom actually had secretly given me "appetite stimulant" (which I thought was Zoloft) and she didn't admit to this until recently (I am 22, so I was a teen at the time). It really made me angry when I heard that, and she STILL insisted I was an anorexic at that time.

    The ironic thing is, being fat again (I had become skinny after being fat as a child, so this was the second time I had to lose 100 lbs) turned me to ED behaviors, like trying to starve myself and throwing up (I did that a few times, then decided I didn't want to damage my teeth, that's the only reason that I stopped and didn't throw up every day). I never did those things when I was too skinny and everyone thought I was an anorexic or bulimic.

    sorry for pouring all this emotional baggage on you. I just wish I ignored everyone. I could have stood to gain an extra 20 lbs, not 160.

    But in 2009 I started to lose it…I'm now 178, down from being 285.

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  83. oh and I'm not vegan anymore. been an ex-vegan for a year.

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  84. Sorry if it looks like I'm spamming, I can't edit my own comment.

    I just wanted to clarify. I wasn't anorexic because there was no intent to starve myself. I had gotten so used to being on a diet, that I was still eating like that. I wasn't hungry. If you eat a calorie restriction to lose weight, and stick to it, you adapt, your hunger adapts, and you may find you don't want to stop. That was my issue. I came up with a term for this, chronic undereater.

    I really don't want to sound like I am anti-ED recovery. I'm just against when people are harassed for eating disorders they don't have. I think it does effect people with EDs if they are forced to avoid healthier lifestyle habits in favor of "healthy" binge eating and sedentary living. how is that healthy?

    I'm male btw.

    here's someone who went through something similar.
    http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Am-Naturally-Thin-And-People-Think-I-Am-Anorexic/412963

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  85. First thing I thought after reading this post was, it's *ice*cream = it's fuckin freezing cold! Of course there's gonna be extra body heat and higher body temp due to the body having to quickly generate major heat to warm the body back up (to normal body temp) after eating freezing cold *ice*cream. So I'm not so convinced that it's due to the sugar or any other contents of the *ice*cream. Sort of like how the body sweats to quickly cool the body back down after drinking hot beverages.

    That being said, Matt has not said people should start adding a ton of sugar to their diet — he's just stopped excluding it and fruit as part of the RRARF protocol. He is and always has been just continually experimenting with his own diet and learning from his own body. You can follow along if you like — even experiment yourself if you want — don't if you don't — but don't blame Matt if you don't get the same results he reports.

    I liked the comment of just wait and see what happens. I do a little of both — I experiment sometimes and other times I just wait and see what happens next. But either way, don't take things so seriously. Even Matt, as you can see, has recently embraced fruit and sugar — after *seriously* rejecting any notion they are actually good for you. Who'd a thunk it? Fruit good??!

    I don't think sugar is as bad as people think — and fruit not at all — and natural sugars being better than refined. But I think a persons current metabolic state makes a difference as to how they respond to sugar or anything — and the better the metabolic state the better response to sugar or anything. Like someone suggested — people with high body temp and metabolism can eat whatever the fuck they want and get away with it. And Matt's current metabolic state is pretty damn good these days — which could account for his positive (in contrast to his past negative) results with sugar and fruit. Just something else to consider before you go gorging on ice cream ;~)

    As for the comments about the kids with poor heath being due to their high sugar intake? It was also mentioned that those kids just pick over the other nutrient dense foods in their diet — so I would blame malnutrition before I would blame sugar — in that case. Just like the comments quoted from WAP — you can't blame sugar in a diet that also contains white flour, vegetable fats, canned foods, etc.

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  86. Orange Sarah-

    Breyer's is really light and clean. I love it too. It's also way cheaper than this gelato.

    Goofy mama-

    Yes, elite athletes often have very low heart rates. When I was an "elite athlete" my resting heart rate was about 40 beats per minute (and my litany of health problems was endless). Elite athletes are generally the most unhealthy of all people though, with more health problems, more frequent infection, more infertility issues and much lower longevity. I assume one could be an athlete and not have this negative reaction, but it is more common, especially for women, to have severe health problems in response to athletic training.

    Your comment could have said,

    "Are you saying that it's good to have your period? Don't elite female athletes rarely menstruate?"

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  87. Mike Jones-

    I hear you. I do think that Jannis makes a good point, and that you are looking at people eating a diet almost exclusively of white flour, sugar, vegetable oil, and canned foods and suffering from serious and severe vitamin and mineral deficiency. I think it's hard to be that paranoid about a little bit of refined food. I mean look at something like the China study. White rice, the lowest nutrient food in the diets of Asian cultures, showed the strongest benefit of just about any food studied. This isn't proof that it's an optimal food, but fearing it outright is totally unjustifiable. But I appreciate where you are coming from obviously. I've taken that stance myself for many years.

    Collden-

    I think the feeling of warmth and improved circulation is a great sign. Even if body temperature is lower, that's not the be-all end-all. It could just be that the adrenals are no longer keeping the metabolism elevated and now you are seeing what the thyroid gland really does produce without help from the catecholamines. I will be interested to see some long-term effects, and have always appreciated your patience and curiosity with things. You have a lot more than most.

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  88. Bandwagons-

    I don't know if it's fair to call new ideas floating around here as bandwagons. I don't rarely want to jump through the computer screen and strangle people, but I thought about it this reading through the comments. Must have been the coffee I drank this morning. Damn adrenaline!

    Okay I'm laughing now. We're good.

    I'm sure I could continue to make the information here increasingly restrictive and keep promoting some ideas about ideal diets, or the perfect diet. But like I said, the perfect diet is very unhealthy, and only something that applies to a small sect of affluent disordered eaters with nothing better to do than obsess over their food. I'm more interested in helping a lot of people a little than a little people a lot, which is why I write instead of work in a clinical setting. The more simple, less restrictive, and straightforward one can be in dishing out some general guidelines for increasing metabolic activity the more people it will ultimately reach and influence.

    At the end of the day one must ask, regardless of whether refined this or that is healthy or not, whether it's truly worth it in the grand scheme of things to religiously avoid certain foods. I think it rarely is. I know far more people that ruined their health eating health food than eating whatever they wanted. Maybe if I grew up in the ghetto I would feel differently about it.

    So whatever, my diet isn't taking center stage in my life right now for the first time since I can remember. The result is better health.

    Ryan-

    Great comments. I wouldn't say I'm an anti-indivuduality preacher at all. Rather, I think reactions to various things can be used diagnostically and there's always a fine line. For example, if you eat a very low-carb diet for a year and then eat a huge carbohdyrate-rich feast, you will likely get extremely sleepy, crash, have blood sugar dysregulation, gas, and maybe have a good cluster of pimples a couple days later.

    That's why "listening to your body" works for few and backfires for most. These are all temporary reactions that signify a certain set of physiological traits that can be radically overhauled in as little as a week. But you would only achieve that by totally ignoring your body and pressing through, increasing the capabilities of your body instead of listening to it.

    Diet and lifestyle individuality will always be muddy waters, and there will always be multiple ways to examine things instead of limiting oneself to a narrow subset of beliefs. That's what we do here. Not just hop from bandwagon to bandwagon.

    Lynn-

    I will go so far as to say that most weight gain comes from a susceptible person (low metabolic state) meeting the novelty of new and exciting foods with an addictive/pornographic quality. Going from low-carb to eating ice cream is one such transition.

    But I've found over the last couple of months that just eating whatever, including lots of sweets which was my own personal nemesis for many years, has totally eliminated any and all food compulsions. In the right context, there is no such thing as an addictive food, which is why many people eat whatever they want, including junk food, and never develop a weight problem, cravings, food addictions, or an inability to self-regulate their weight.

    Dopamine is the primary biochemical involved in this. But there is a missing piece in there somewhere. The addiction model would suggeest that eating lots of ice cream and pie would make everyone fall off the deep end. This hasn't happened to me at all. I used to think about sweets constantly. Now my appetite is lower, cravings nonexistent, and my desire to eat such foods in excess is as low as it has ever been. I literally could take one bite of ice cream now and put down the spoon without feeling the slightest bit of deprivation. That's a first for me in 33 years.

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  89. Having just given in and let sugar binges and everything else play out, I found it really hard to buy into the addiction model as well. I find the same experience. I have not fallen off the deep end. Instead there's a desire for sweets here and there, but also a desire for many other foods as well.

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  90. Been following the comments in the recent posts for the most part, but haven't seen this question.

    People like Martin Berkhan and Lyle Mcdonald and probably other bodybuilding type researcher's won't even look more deeply into Peat's work because they say Peat cites mostly RAT STUDIES. How much of that translates to humans? Which studies does Peat cite about humans? It all seems very complicated and not too well known.

    I think a lot of newbies around here would do well to keep reading and not get sucked into a few quick fixes. After all, if it took you years to damage your body, how long would do u think it would take to recover? Likd D Scwarzbein says "u gotta be healthy to lose weight, not the other way around". If u gain weight eating healthy foods, it's mostly u who's the problem.

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  91. Matt – Are you saying that overeating caused the weight gain? I really didn't develop a 'pornographic' appetite for ice cream or anything. I had two-three dried apricots (made without sulphites and organic) 2/3 times a day and two bowls of ice cream on separate occasions. Otherwise, it was all good whole foods. So do the dopamine agonists reduce cravings? If so, it’s no good to me. Cravings for sweets is not my problem.

    I really think that sugar can cause problems for the following groups:
    - People who have not achieved the 97.7 basal temps plus in the follicular phase,
    - People whose diet was high PUFA. I think it's interesting that you are doing so well on a high sugar intake after a year of low PUFA. Before you embraced low PUFA, you couldn’t tolerate much sugar though.

    So my plan is to keep my diet low in PUFAs, use gelatine, keep red meat to once a day, and chicken to once every 10 days. Also to try and do everything I can to get my crappy basals up.

    Then I just have to find a weight loss plan 'cause this weight is NOT good for my mental health. When will you be writing about the HCG diet?

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  92. Matt,

    Agreed. In the spirit of experimentation and objectivity, it's important to give changes enough time to take place. Some folks try things for a day and then switch gears because it "doesn't work." That's what I respect about you, Mateo: you give things a fair try and don't discriminate against some of our tastiest — and possibly harmless — foods that much of the health world deems pure evil. I also strongly admire your work in getting the message across about unnecessary food avoidance and encouraging folks to focus on a healthy relationship with food.

    I've been thinking a lot about developing some kind of experimentation/body awareness curriculum in which folks can be guided to find their own answers about how food affects their own body. It would be a year long adventure in eating, at least. But it would be fascinating to hear about different results from the same basic guidelines.

    Anyway, when you come out to Utah this summer to "take on a slot canyon" we can talk about it. :-)

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  93. Danimal-

    I don't trust anyone who relies mostly on rat or human studies. Studies are misleading, ignore what happens to real people in the real world, and can't account for complex emotions, histories, metabolic health, or long-term vs. short-term which are often the exact opposite of one another.

    But Peat is different. Read enough of his stuff and you see a great comprehensive breadth to how he came to those conclusions. He does suffer from some of the same biases as many researchers though. No one is immune to that. He also has many things that his work does not account for, not to mention he will latch on to one line of thinking at the exclusion of the other (focusing on endotoxin while ignoring butyric acid from bacterial fermention is one good example – or dissing carotene when yams are anti-estrogenic might be another example).

    But the work of anyone can be useful. I'm interested in sucrose not because it doesn't raise insulin as much which is insignificant, but for how it impacts real people. One of those ways is to fairly consistently create greater energy production, better sleep, and more warmth in the hands and feet. To me there is something very fascinating to be explored there.

    Lynn-

    You don't have to eat more for foods with a higher palatability (the scientific definition of the word) to increase the appetite to metabolism ratio and cause a rise in set point. A study mentioned by Guyenet recently pointed out, with identical calorie intakes and identical macronutrient breakdown that the flavoring of the solution was enough to determine body weight and metabolic rate. More palatable = lower metabolism and higher appetite and more fat storage.

    It's actually all quite fascinating. More and more research is pointing to the dopaminergic system being the dominant force in body weight regulation – able to outrank the normal feedback mechanisms like leptin that would keep weight constant. The dopaminergic system is NOT a negative feedback system like leptin. So potentially it has the ability to short-circuit the system.

    There are dozens of food factors that influence the dopamine response. Crunch, mouthfeel, water content, stickiness, and all the factors that are manipulated by successful food processing and restaurant industries factor in. Even packaging and ambiance factors in.

    But I think it's a catch-22 just like anything else to go down such a route. It's dysfunctional in today's society to be at the mercy of pleasure foods. I'd rather help people make junk food their bitch by making them hypermetabolic and craving-free.

    But if you really want to explore the dopaminergic system and weight loss, be my guest. The best way to exploit it is by eating the same flavor of the same food for every meal without variety. Monotony is ultimate pleasure killer. I think anyone could lose weight eating nothing but ice cream. It works because your appetite to metabolism ratio falls below 1:1 and remains there as long as you continue eating monotonously. Then when you eat something novel and new you are likely to reverse that and gain it all back. It's weight loss by war, and while anyone can win battles, few win the war against their brain's innate and instinctual drive for pleasure.

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  94. 'in the right context, no food is addictive:' this is a great take-away meditation, and I love the constant urge to look for answers in the body, not in the particular food item. Of course, this doesn't mean that we should all make it a goal to be able to eat everything, but it is liberating.

    Matt, I look forward to more on the dopamine response and that whole 'palatability' schtick. You talked about it on that audio interview a couple months back, and I think it's fascinating.

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  95. Matt, you haven't answered about why you reacted so badly to sugar before, and why did you say such things as it screwing your wealth by itself when you ere a kid.

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  96. Elite athletes are generally the most unhealthy of all people though, with more health problems, more frequent infection, more infertility issues and much lower longevity." Got any references for that? Would love to bother some people with 'em.

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  97. EL 66,
    I have a bunch of studies lying around which show that athlets have reduced testosterone and impaired lung function.

    Matt,
    Are you sure sucrose improves sleep? Eaten in the right amounts, I think it does indeed improve sleep quality, probably due to increased glycogen. But often too much sugar decreases my ability to find deep sleep without interruption.

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  98. Ryan, where do you live? We lived in Moab for years (still trying to sell our house there!). Peek-a-boo and Spooky gulch are our faves, but new beefy Matt may not fit thru them!

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  99. Jannis, I would gladly take a look at them.

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  100. Sure, give me your email.

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  101. Lorelei,

    I'm close to Peekaboo and Spooky — just over the mountain, in fact! The town where I live, Torrey, is very small in a gorgeous area minutes away from Capitol Reef.

    Moab is a sweet little town. I have a few friends there.

    I think beefy Matt is going to have to slim down if he dares come canyoneering. (That's right, Matt. I dare you.) If he gets stuck, maybe we could make a film about it, called 180 Hours, where Matt struggles to escape a treacherous canyon, eventually sacrificing his fired up metabolism in order to shed muscle mass!

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  102. Yes! Our senses should be the guide as to when something stops being good for us and starts being bad. One should eat as much meat, saturated fat, starch, sugar, and vegetables as one likes (and get as much exercise as one likes), but no more than one likes. And of course, there are the things that bypass our senses– PUFAs and nutrient deficient foods. Sugar and starch are only a danger in that they can be so satisfying, but without vitamins and minerals.

    Also, this means that one size does not fit all. If you feel like fatty ice cream, get fatty ice cream! There had to be some reason why "rich" and "creamy" was once widely valued. I also like the lack of carrageenan in Breyers ice cream, but there's actually not enough fat in there for me. I like to pour cream on it.

    Does gelato have gelatin in it? Apparently not, but there's no ingredients list on their site so I can't be sure. Oh well– protein makes things more filling, which may not be desired for a dessert.

    You know what's strange is how we like frozen treats and drinks, being that they couldn't have been available much before refrigeration. I wonder if the reason has something to do with how Peat believes water has "memory"? Or perhaps the coldness is just stimulating somehow.

    It's funny how, back when I first got off low carb after getting into this site, I was exclaiming how nothing seemed to raise my body temperature like sugar. Someone (maybe Matt) warned me that this might not be such a good sign. But yet here he is saying the same thing I did!

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  103. @Stancel, I ate the butter & sugar in addition to real, healthy food. It wasn't binging uncontrollably. But my body just craved it. I ate a lot because I needed to. To restrict would not have allowed recovery. My appetite leveled out after a bit. I put on a lot of weight but never got fat (underweight to higher side of normal). I definitely got a little belly fat and looked bloated, but that's just what happens when you're recovering from an eating disorder. I was working with a therapist and nutritionist at the time. I'm thin now, eating what most would consider a normal but overall very healthy diet (all real food, no junk). It took about 4 years for my metabolism to completely recover, but I had some backslides that set me back. My nutritionist told me it takes a year for most people's metabolisms to recover from an eating disorder. That should be a good guide for how long it could take people on this site with a long history of dieting and screwed metabolism.
    -Amy

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  104. "I literally could take one bite of ice cream now and put down the spoon without feeling the slightest bit of deprivation. That's a first for me in 33 years."

    This is me, too. I enjoy desserts but literally only want a little. I have not jumped on the sugar bandwagon, so that's not what did it. But since my ED recovery I've always allowed myself desserts if I crave them. Once you let go and eat what you're body wants, this is exactly what happens, in my experience. Rrarf really did it for me more than anything – I think I just needed lots of carbs, in any form (My version of Rrarf included fruit, and small amounts of refined sugar when I wanted it).
    -Amy

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  105. Amy, would you be comfortable with providing me your email address to talk to you about ED stuff? I don't want to clutter up the feed on here… but I'd love your insight into some things.

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  106. Matt
    2 little questions,,,,
    what are you're thoughts on the 40-50 grams of fructose a day and after that it gets stored as fat ??is it true ??? sine sucrose is half fructose will it make the same effect??
    and what do u now think about caffeine??
    thanks ;=)

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  107. @ Mike Jones

    I was a child who preferred sugar over anything starting around the 3rd grade. i developed mood disorders (which is very common in our family), constipation, an eating disorder, self esteem issues that have persisted until recently, and weight gain.

    currently i am an attractive, lean (and becoming leaner) male who has no physical symptoms of any damage the years of processed sugar abuse might have caused. i've also never had a cavity in my life even in the face of using water and a toothbrush to clean my teeth for the past year. in fact, my teeth have become stronger and whiter since introducing as much sugar as i want into my diet.

    although it seems my current concept of how we should be looking at our body wasn't very popular when i mentioned it a while back, i still feel that we should be looking at what things we can put in to our bodies that provide more benefits than drawbacks in the long term. going with this mindset, meth does not provide more benefits than drawbacks and therefore should be minimized if not avoided if at all possible (not an issue for most people). at this current time we can not say sugar causes more problems in the long term because to my knowledge there are very few documented cases of people mixing high proportions of saturated fat with this yummy white stuff. if there are any cases of people eating this way, please post them. i would be surprised if there are any drawbacks as adding sugar to my diet has erased the last my mood disorders, afforded me the best sleep quality of my life, as well as a higher quality of life in general.

    -Anonymous

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  108. @Wheezy, I'm happy to answer your questions. What's your email address? I'll shoot you a message.

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  109. @ all those crying that "we are all different"

    we may all be at different places in the level of inefficiency of our metabolisms (different in/tolerances, etc…), but the point I've always believed in (and feel Matt is pushing as well) is that there is a generalized place where most should be able to achieve, one that allows one to eat a great number of things with little to no problems. there would simply HAVE to be a "core diet" if you will for all humans. we are too similar currently for there to be huge, sweeping differences. yes, there will always be people who do not react well to something "no matter what they do". just because we don't yet understand the root cause doesn't mean it's an epi/genetic adaption.

    just because YOUR body currently doesn't react well to something doesn't mean "everyone is different", it just means something is going on that is preventing your body from properly processing whatever it is you have problems with. unless you can prove that it's a genetic variance (which currently i don't think that's possible. could be wrong) everyone should just take something at face value. don't try to force an explanation.

    -Anonymous

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  110. Anonymous,
    Good point. I don't subscribe to that theory, either. When people react differently to certain diets or substances, it's very easy to say that this is caused by genetic differences. That this has nothing to do with reality has been demonstrated over and over again.I think we all have pretty much the same nutritional requirements. If people's reactions differ, it's caused by metabolic or hormonals differences, which can be altered or corrected.

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  111. yes it is. too easy, especially in a field that we still have a very narrow understanding of. i mean, of course we are all different in that our EXACT requirements differ, but people use "it must be genetics" as an answer to anything they don't understand and act like it's an irrefutable point. i'd rather be skeptical and wrong than right for the wrong reasons.

    which reminds me, as much as i like what matt is doing, the quality of crowd he seems to attract is… questionable haha. scary at times, actually.

    -Anonymous

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  112. Anonymous (one of you anyway),

    No doubt one can grow up on sugar and still come out attractive and cavity free. When talking about physical degeneration, I'm talking about subtle details that most people wouldn't even recognize without a familiarity with Price's "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration." Things like ear size, breadth of nasal passages, dental arches, etc. Look around you and compare the older generations to the younger generations, and I bet you will find that on average, old folks (especially those in their 70s and 80s) have much bigger skulls, larger ears, broader noses, and wider arches than young people (especially 20-somethings). Now maybe later generations' increased sugar consumption has nothing to do with this discrepancy, but at the very least we can say the older generations were raised on much higher quality food.

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  113. Also, if you made it to adulthood without need of braces or wisdom teeth extractions, I'm impressed! I was not quite so lucky.

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  114. No Braces
    Wisdom teeth still here
    but many many fillings, a permanent bridge due to shitty dentistry and lots of root canals and caps.
    So, yeah, not sure the lack of braces and having all your wisdom teeth is a great measure of health.

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  115. Do you own stock in Talenti or are you getting paid to shill for them? They cost $1.50-2.50 more than a similar size container of Haagen-Dazs, have about 200 less calories, and roughly the same amount of sugar. If you want more sugar, drink orange juice with a bowl of HD or pour sugar on top of it. To say it has more sugar is bullshit. It does have a few grams lss fat, as if that will save your day since you have apparently developed fat-phobia and 6-7g of extra fat will mke you a blatedcongested mess. Ha. The gelato taste is also not as good as HD, imo. I tried double chocolate and mint chocolate. Wish I had saved my money. I considered trying Talenti long before you mentioned it, but it sucks. Rip off with poor taste and crappy gums you don't need. Sticking with Haagen Dazs or similar 5 ingredient and no-gum ice creams.

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  116. Jannis: "I know you are probably referring to Weston A. Price. But what Price showed is not that a diet high in sugar causes those things, but a diet of refined foods which included only a small amounts of minerals and vitamins, and was much higher in PUFA."

    Actually, Price didn't mention all cultures eating lots of PUFAs, but I'm sure some ate margarine and/or refined oils. What he showed, IMO, was that eating refined foods, and almost nothing else, damaged human health. Read his description of a typical diet being eaten by the kids he treated for cavities. They were eating vegetable fat, refined sugar, and white flour (probably bleached and/or enriched) almost exclusively.

    http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/price/price16.html

    Colldén: "I'm also wondering how Matt is re-evaluating his childhood experiences since I know he's written some before about how adding just a little refined sugar to a diet of otherwise very wholesome foods ruined his health as a kid."

    I wouldn't put much stock in Matt or anyone's theories about which foods damaged their health. Think of AV saying he "developed angina at age 15 on pasteurized dairy." As if that were the only thing he was eating or the worst offender. LOL. Give me controlled scientific studies and I'll believe sugar is the major offender in Matt's child hood or pasteurized dairy in AV's.

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  117. EL 66k: "while I'm skeptical about all the info blaming sugar, specially unrefined sources, for the problems of modern civilization, I do remember Price saying that only a partial substitution of traditional foods with "modern foods" was enough to cause significant degeneration in a population (at least dentally)."

    Price didn't isolate variables. It is possible that if they continued eating the traditional animal food but replaced starches with refined (or unrefined) sugar, their health would've stayed the same or gotten better. All Price showed is that a diet of predominantly junk is bad. He didn't show that adding refined sugar and removing starch, keeping animal foods constant, would have the same harmful effects.

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  118. EL 66K and Mike Jones: you're both mistaken. Weston Price wrote about "vegetable fat" at least two times in NAPD. See Chapter 16.

    "It is important to note that the home nutrition which had been responsible for the tooth decay was exceedingly low in body building and repairing material, while temporarily satisfying the appetite. It usually consisted of highly sweetened strong coffee and white bread, vegetable fat, pancakes made of white flour and eaten with syrup, and doughnuts fried in vegetable fat."

    http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/price/price16.html

    Margarine was invented around 1869 (the time of Napoleon), way before WAP's travels. So it's very likely that primitives were eating phoney hydrogenated oils. WAP might have simply ignored it or assumed sugar and flour were the culprits. I do not know when vegetable oils first corrupted human diets, but it was probably long before margarine and Crisco came along. The poor people would have eaten this junk because they couldn't afford butter. Lard is also an inferior substitute for fresh meat, butter, milk, or eggs, IMO. Fresh whole foods will always come out ahead of rendered fats in terms of health, I believe.

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