Gary Taubes’ “Why We Get Fat”

I know I haven’t posted in a bit, but amidst the internal turmoil, I had time to read Gary Taubes’ most recent book, Why We Get Fat. I’ve had a chance to sit down and have lunch with Gary and I’d  say, with our aligned views, we’ll become fast friends. Until that day, Gary did say something interesting: he’s planning to try CBL. I don’t know if he will or has, but we’re trying to set up regular lunches. I’ll keep you posted.

Until then, I found this awesome graphical representation of Gary’s central thesis (and mine in Carb Nite and to a lesser extent in Carb Back-Loading). Enjoy.

  • sckiely

    I bought this book in April and was very impressed. Shared the info in the “Take it Outside” area” of the forum. So glad Kiefer is in agreement.

  • Stefan

    What are your thoughts on Stephan Guyanet’s criticism of the Insulin Hypothesis? Have you been following the debate between Taubes and him over the last year or so? Some fantastic dialogue.

  • Conrad

    I bought this as an audio book and listened to the unabridged version during my long commutes. Can’t wait to see what you two discover together. I am now listening to Good Calories Bad Calories unabridged.

  • Michael

    I don’t understand why Guyenet’s so-called refutation seem to have been blindly picked up by lots of people who now say Taubes’ model is outdated or something. Read this:

    and the latest blog posts there too. Guyenet used his intellectual credit card to buy himself some prestige and now it looks like he can’t pay up.

  • Rakesh Patel

    I am glad you two connected. I had breakfast with him at the end of May and mentioned your name. He said he was going to be meeting with you. I gave him my experience with CNS. The infographic is nice, we have been using it in the office for several months.

  • Ramanand Hegde

    The amount of sh** in the mainstream doesn’t go away easily. After being a regular reader of DH and beginning to get some grip on the modern day messy diets, I come across this in NYTimes:

    I don’t know what to feel for this guy Hirsch…60 years of opportunity of doing research on this and he still says a calorie is a calorie! I really feel sad for his patients. Here’s the most comic/tragic comment of his:

    Q: But if we have such a sensing mechanism, why are people fatter now than they used to be?
    A: This wonderful sensing mechanism involves genetics and environmental factors, and it gets set early in life. It is not clear how much of the setting is done before birth and how much is done by food or other influences early in life. There are many possibilities, but we just don’t know.

    He admits he hasn’t the foggiest idea, but still considers himself the expert! Thanks for reading this rant.

    • Chris Bernier

      ahhhg the diet world is stressfull. Ive been doing cbl and its hard to just do it with out being criticized or looked at like your an idiot these principles of calories and carbs are the key to the world and fat is evil are so ingrained in people that any new idea that may involve any extra understanding of the way your body works are shunned and tossed aside. you just gotta believe in your self be a rule breaker as arnold would say.

  • N Hill

    I’m sorry, as far as the graphical representation goes, I don’t buy the part about you thinking about a carby meal makes you secrete insulin. If that were the case, wouldn’t we all be extra fat, or extra muscled? Come on, stuff like this makes people stress out about food. Some people will now be paranoid they’re not burning fat when even thinking about a cheesecake! Just asinine and a contributor to the ongoing dysfunction we as a society have with food. I can’t help but wonder if 20 years from now, will we see low carb diets in the same light we see low fat diets nowadays?

    • Vince

      “I can’t help but wonder if 20 years from now, will we see low carb diets in the same light we see low fat diets nowadays? ”

      There is no way you have tried a low carb diet if you have this kind of reaction. Low carb (or any derivation thereo, i.e. paleo, CBL) shreds fat and with proper insulin manipulation, grows muscle. Aside from these aesthetic effects, blood lipid panels, mood, intelligence, all improve with this sort of diet. This sounds much more like a paradigm shift than an infatuation with a fad. I think some general paranoia about food would do our society some good and may lead some people to find out about a diet such as this and change their lives. Besides, when you become fat adapted you really don’t get hungry all the time and the daily (or hourly) thoughts about things like cheesecake virtually go away (unless its your last set of heavy squats and you know a cherry pie is about to go down the piehole for your CBL evening, no pun intended).

    • Cruton

      Just as thinking about biting in to a juicy steak makes your mouth water i.e. salivate, your body also does secrete insulin. Your mouth salivating is your digestion system getting in to gear. Not a far stretch that it secretes insulin to prepare for elevated blood glucose levels.

  • tarius729

    so to properly apply CBL should we also not even think about food containing carbs? im joking, but im actually kinda serious if just the thought really does get the insulin pumping

  • halfguardkimura

    I think that the fact that thinking about eating sweet foods causes insulin release is the reason why diet sodas can sabotage an otherwise good diet like CBL or Carb Night. Not to mention that when you drink a diet soda, your taste buds register it as sweet so your body is probably tricked into making insulin. Does anyone know if this is true? Better yet, can anyone tell me that drinking diet sodas doesn’t make a difference? I love my diet cherry pepsi when I’m going for days without any carbs. The sweet taste helps me stay on the diet.