Tuesday, January 16, 2018
You can’t exercise your way out of a bad diet
Dr. David Ludwig, an endocrinologist at Boston Children’s Hospital:
“We generally think that weight gain is the unavoidable consequence of consuming too many calories, with fat cells being the passive recipients of that excess,” he wrote in his 2016 book “Always Hungry.” “But fat cells do nothing of consequence without specific instructions—certainly not calorie storage and release, their most critical functions.”
The chief instructor? Insulin, Ludwig wrote.
“Insulin’s effects on calorie storage are so potent that we can consider it the ultimate fat cell fertilizer,” he wrote, describing a study in which rats given insulin infusions gained more weight than their counterpart control rats.
“Even when their food was restricted to that of the control animals, they still became fatter,” Ludwig wrote. “If too much insulin drives fat cells to increase in size and number, what drives the pancreas to produce too much insulin? Carbohydrate, specifically sugar and the highly processed starches that quickly digest into sugar.”
Along with a team of six other researchers, Ludwig conducted a similar study with human subjects, in which the researchers studied the effects of a 60, 40 and 10 percent carbohydrate diet—each containing the same number of calories—on 32 18-to-40-year-old men and women with body-mass indexes of 27 (obese) or higher over a seven-month period.
“We found that the participants burned about 325 calories a day more on the low-carbohydrate compared to the high-carbohydrate diet,” Ludwig reported. “The high-carbohydrate diet also had the worst effect on major heart disease risk factors, including insulin resistance, triglycerides, and HDL cholesterol. These results … indicate that all calories are not alike to the body. The type of calories going into the body affects the number of calories going out.”
In other words:
“You cannot exercise away a bad diet,”
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