Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Where Do You Get Your Low Carb Information?

There are a lot of theories pertaining to the low carb way of eating on the Internet and in popular books. And not all of the theories are sound, or backed by hard, empirical, scientific data. So I am curious where people get their ideas from. Are you getting your ideas from a science journalist? A comedian? A romance novelist whose books have "bodice ripper" covers? Physicians (such as this one, this one, this one, and these two)? Nutrition researchers? Weight loss celebrities? Cookbook authors (such as this one, this one, and this one)?

Personally, I have learned from all of the above. However, my vote for the most hard hitting and accurate information about both the low carb way of eating and type II diabetes goes to the romance novelist with the bodice ripper covers. She has three web sites: one called Blood Sugar 101, one called What They Don't Tell You About Low Carb Diets, and a diabetes research update blog. The Blood Sugar 101 site really lays it all out and is perhaps the most important type II diabetes web site on the Internet. She explains everything associated with type II diabetes, including the low carb way of eating, medications, finger sticks, diabetes on a budget, etc. And her diabetes update blog is my go to source for up-to-date diabetes information.

Her low carb site is informed by years of experience and empirical evidence. She discusses stalls (and how to overcome them), how much weight you will lose, what happens when you fall off the low carb wagon, how to overcome "keto breath," lots of practical "in the trench" advice, etc. Ounce for ounce, it is the most meaty and useful low carb site on the Internet.

I cannot comment on her romance novels, however, as my tastes in fiction go more to science fiction and epic fantasy.

The book that influenced me the most, the one that introduced me to the low carb way of eating, is Why We Get Fat and What to Do About It by Gary Taubes. However, I am learning that Taubes is a theorist and some of his ideas, such as calories don't count and exercise doesn't help are not grounded in scientific data. This book has been enormously influential in my success, but I am starting to see the holes in some of his arguments. For that reason, it does not take second place. That honor of the second most influential source of information goes to the book The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living by Jeff Volek, Ph.D., R.D., and Stephen Phinney, M.D., Ph.D. Written for other physicians, it lays out the low carb lifestyle and documents every point they make. I have reviewed the book previously on my other blog, so I won't go into great detail here. Suffice it to say that it explains the "how" of the low carb way of eating.

And a well-deserved honorable mention goes to the cookbook, Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, Ph.D. (read my review). More than a cookbook, it explains what is necessary for healthy eating and how to prepare foods to achieve optimal health. Not low carb per se, but it is extraordinarily informative. I am doing much of the cooking at home and her cookbook is my go-to source for healthy recipes.

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