Eve has started blogging about the fattening effect of carbs and is pointing out that low-carb regimes like Atkins are not as crazy as some would have us all believe.
I thought I would weigh in with my story. A few years ago I woke up and found myself weighing 18 stone with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and a stressful, largely exercise free lifestlye.
I tried the standard approaches, precise calorie counting, fruit for lunch, nothing after 6...all that stuff. No joy. I stumbled upon Atkins and the geek in me was intrigued. I have a soft spot for contrarian conceptual models that put received wisdom through the wood chipper. I decided to give it a go although I was very skeptical. Especially when I read the sentence in the book that says something like "Remember to eat regularly. You may forget to eat.". Yeah, that will happen...
But it did. I found that I had essentially complete control over hunger pangs. With Atkins, if you are hungry you eat. That's it. It is just that you are very careful *what* you eat. Hunger pangs are not part of the recipe. You control them so that they do not control you.
So, the weight started to come off. I joined a gym and the weight started to fall off. I lost 2.5 stone without a single hunger pang. "This is trivial", one part of me said while another part of me was thinking "Perhaps my insides are turning to mush. Perhaps by arteries are disintegrating or getting clogged with lumps of cheesey egg roll wrapped in chicken skin?".
I went to the doctor for a checkup and my blood pressure and cholesterol were both significantly better than they were before. Now as a geek, I'm always wary of conflating correlation with causation. I don't know if was purely the weight loss that dropped the BP and cholesterol. Maybe the diet was not a part of it. Perhaps the diet was the primary driver of the weight loss? I don't know...and neither, it seems does medical science.
I have my weight under control now. Every now and then I fall of the wagon and it starts to climb up again - especially now that I live in the epicenter of the processed carb universe - the USA. Every now and then I drop some more carbs from my intake and the extra weight goes away. No panic. No problem.
Yes, yes I know that I really should get some exercise too but, heck, who's perfect? I'm working on it. Quit nagging! Yes, yes, I know that the scientific/medical community is very much split on this whole low-carb issue and maybe I'm killing myself.
I've seen scientific controversies before and been involved in a few (if you allow "computing" to be classed as a science that is). This one looks very familiar. It smacks of Thomas Kuhn. It also smacks of "Big Carb". Consider me a walking experiment if you like. If the low-carb lifestlye kills me, the lack of activity on my blog will let you know I was wrong and the "fat makes you fat" brigade were right :-)
 Ho ho ho