- Sep 18, 2008
- MBTI Type
- Instinctual Variant
[MENTION=5076]nonsequitur[/MENTION], I think that no matter the type of diet one follows, if they eat poorly and too much of something, they will put on the weight. I've known overweight and even obese vegetarians/vegans, thinking that their processed plant-based junk food is totally okay to munch on everyday. I think that thing you said about iron and b-12 cause a lot of concern for me, since I too, am anemic. I suppose veganism is not for me.
That said, I do wonder if there is a correlation between the run of the mill (pun unintended) slaughterhouses who pump those animals with things that shouldn't be in them, like the growth hormones that can make them twice or even thrice its original size, as well as the cancerous cooking methods (barbecuing/grilling) with hydrogenated oils can make meat so dangerous to eat nowadays. What is your take? I read this book about a woman who was always obese and almost killed herself at 24 from her eating habits, and now she eats grass fed red meat and is pushing a US dress size 4 and has an amazing blood panel from the doctors. She said its not certain foods itself that are bad, but the way they are produced and marketed, if that makes sense.
That's true, but it's also overly simplistic because our biology is is different from individual to individual. As a rule, yes, people who eat lots of processed foods tend to be larger for a number of reasons (that I won't go into here). Some individuals deal well with carbohydrates, some don't. I know there's this company that tests for the number of copies of genes that produces the enzyme that breaks down carbs, so that you can find out how sensitive your body will be to carbs. There's significant amount of variation, with some individuals having a couple of copies and some having 14-16 (so they have higher levels of the enzyme). For people who don't deal well with carbs (like myself), it will be hard to be vegan and get enough protein while maintaining blood sugar levels (vegetarianism is ok because there's dairy and eggs). Then again, I also know some vegan bodybuilders so.. I guess it really depends on what works for your biology.
If you want to be vegan, I'd suggest working out a meal plan with a dietician - they won't have the genetics background that I do, which allows for tweaking of the details, but generally it can be done through starting with a basic, nutritionally balanced plan and modifying through trial and error. I don't recommend it because there's no health basis for it (veganism is an ethical choice, not a health one) but if you do make that decision, make sure that it's done smartly, and to supplement whatever the diet can't provide you.
About the example that you brought up, I addressed part of it in what I wrote above - a lot of it is down to individual biology. Some people break down carbs so fast that their blood sugar spikes really high even if they've had a low glycemic index meal. Some break it down so slowly that they can have a couple of donuts and it's like they had brown rice with broccoli (an exaggeration, but you get the point). Those who are sensitive to carbs tend to do well on a low-carb diet, e.g. paleo and a ketogenic diet. This is related to gender, and applies more strongly to men. There are also women who can thrive on such a diet, but some don't do well on it at all and don't lose any weight. Then there are those whose fat metabolism is really really inefficient, and need some carbs or they can't function at all.
How you eat should also be designed to complement how you work out. Many people work out to lose weight, but it's highly inefficient (won't go into the math here) and should be the other way around. People should work out to feel powerful, strong and capable, and eat to complement that performance and sense of well-being. The weight loss is just a side-effect of taking care of yourself. I think there's an over-emphasis on weight loss, but I can see how it's the most visible marker and it's so easy to exploit people's insecurities to market a miracle diet or workout that will apparently make you look like what you're told you're supposed to look like. I just want to link this article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/26/health/skinny-fat.html?_r=0 It highlights the importance of individual biology and how looks are not a marker for health, which should be the priority.
While it's true that the farming industry have been doing all sorts of dodgy stuff over the years, I don't think hormone injections + antibiotics is as widespread a problem as it used to be. There's quite a bit of legislation that (if not prevent completely) reduces these practices. I've heard lots of good stuff about grass-fed beef regarding its quality and taste, but the price is out of my budget. If you want to give it a go, sure, go for it. But by no means is it the only good source of red meat available.