In The News

Is The American Heart Association Beginning to Talk Sense?

The news has been full of interesting nutrition information lately. One of the most important stories is that the American Heart Association (AHA) has finally acknowledged that the excessive intake of added sugars contributes to a variety of chronic life-threatening conditions including heart disease.

For decades the AHA has had a consistent one-note message. Fat is the enemy. They never changed their position while heart disease remained the number one killer of both men and women and the epidemic of obesity and type 2 diabetes marched on.

Itís about time they acknowledged the facts, although their position does not go far enough. They have now joined the ranks of another large influential group, the American Diabetes Association, who finally acknowledged that a low carb diet can be used for weight loss up to one year. They donít go far enough either and acknowledge the many research studies and consistently positive results beyond weight loss that occurs when people follow a very low carb lifestyle correctly. 

For decades The American Heart Association along with the USDA have been responsible for pushing the nutritional misinformation that all fats are bad, that the dangerous hydrogenated vegetable oils known as trans fats were better than natural fats, eggs will give you heart disease and adding insult to injury by putting their heart-healthy symbol on Pop-Tarts.

Is their latest statement their way of beginning to acknowledge the error of their ways? Research continues to accumulate that low carb is a healthy lifestyle and has been shown to be better than any other approach in lowering high triglycerides and increasing HDL. The research section of this site contains numerous studies of interest relating to low carb. 

Calories-In-Calories-Out

The new AHA guidelines recommend that within a calorie controlled diet, women limit foods with added sugars to 100 calories a day and men to no more than 150 calories a day. They once again fall back on to the one-size-fits-all approach and all that matters is counting calories. They fail to recognize that some people will tolerate those extra calories-many others will not. They donít acknowledge that beyond calories the hormonal responses to different foods must be taken into account. 

Because 66% of the adult population, and far too many kids and young people, are overweight or obese the one-size-fits-all approach will continue to fail. People with a family history of diabetes, women with PCOS, those with excessive belly fat, people with metabolic syndrome AKA pre-diabetes and women who had gestational diabetes exhibit insulin resistance leading to insulin and blood sugar imbalances. Not only are people who have insulin and blood sugar dysregulation not likely to tolerate foods with added sugars they wonít tolerate foods with a high glycemic response either. Refined and whole grains, fruit juices, potatoes and many other foods that donít have added sugars are still too high in carbs to allow the body to return blood sugar and insulin to normal, healthy levels. These are the very foods that are supposedly heart healthy and should be included on a diet for people with or at risk for diabetes. They have been pushed by the AHA and the American Diabetes Association for decades, ignoring the fact that fat adds satiety and protein manages hunger.  

It isnít even recognized by many that carb addiction actually exists. The commonly heard advice to ďeat everything in moderationĒ speaks to a real lack of understanding about how carb addiction leads to over-consumption. Will power isnít enough. Correction of insulin resistance and high insulin levels is a must. That is best done by controlling both the quality and quantity of carbohydrate intake.  

Just like the cigarette industry, that over the years increased addicting ingredients in their products to keep customers and make billions, the food industry has added more and more forms of sugars to their products. They even add more sugars in US products than the same items sold in other countries. This done under the guise of giving the customer what they want. When criticized they fall back on the calories-in-calories-out mantra. Meanwhile our population, including the young, is fatter and more unhealthy then ever.  

We need to wise up and stop buying into the marketing. Take personal responsibility for your body and your health. Educate yourself about what lifestyle change will work best for you, learn all you can about your choice and just do it. You can start by stopping foods with added sugars concentrating on foods with a low glycemic load, regular protein and natural fats. Consume whole unprocessed food and youíll be surprised by the difference it makes.

The information presented on this site is in no way intended as medical advice or as a substitute for medical treatment. This information should be used in conjunction with the guidance and care of your physician. Consult your physician before beginning this program as you would any weight-loss or weight-maintenance program.  Those of you on diuretics or diabetes medication should proceed only under a doctorís supervision as changing your diet usually requires a change in medication dosages. As with any plan, the weight-loss phases of this program should not be used by patients on dialysis or by pregnant or nursing women. As with any weight-loss plan, we recommend anyone under the age of 18 follow the program under the guidance of their physician.