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Twin Doctorsí Diet Experiment: One Gave Up Sugar, One Gave Up Fat
New York Daily News ^ | THURSDAY, JANUARY 30, 2014 | Victoria Taylor

Posted on 01/31/2014 11:51:14 AM PST by nickcarraway

Sugar vs fat: Chris and Xand Van Tulleken, both 35, spent a month following restrictive fad diets to see if one food group is behind the obesity epidemic.

Is a high-fat, low-carb diet better for you than a high-carb, low-fat one? A pair of British brothers set out to end the fat versus sugar debate.

Alexander (Xand) Van Tulleken, a senior fellow at the Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs at Fordham University in New York, and Chris Van Tulleken, a physician at University College Hospital, London, each agreed to stick to a specific diet for one month.

Chris followed a super-low-fat plan, while Xand cut out carbs, and their journey was documented for BBC’s Horizon program.

The 35-year-old identical twins were the perfect guinea pigs, Xand said. They had the same genes, lived similar lifestyles and had comparable exercise habits, so any changes would be the result of their new diets. They were allowed to eat whatever they wanted, both brothers said cutting out such a big food group was no picnic.

“I thought I'd got the better deal: I could eat meat, fish, eggs and cheese,” Xand wrote in an article for the Daily Mail. “But take away carbohydrates and the joy goes out of meals. And remove all fruit and veg — they all have carbs — and you get constipated."

Xand said the diet filled him up, but he felt slow both mentally and physically. Chris, who was always snacking because he was never full, blew past his brother in an uphill bicycle race.

“He just keeps getting further away and I cannot make my legs go any faster,” Xand told the camera during the race. “It’s like I’m stuck in one gear.”

Chris also crushed him in a fake stock trading competition.

"I just couldn't remember anything," Xand said in an interview with the Daily News.

Both brothers did drop some weight at the end of the month, but Xand explained to The News that his weight loss came from losing muscle ("Losing muscle is bad news," he said). He was also closer to being diabetic.

"I was significantly less healthy than my brother was," he said. But Chris’ low-fat diet could also have negative health consequences, so neither is good for you in the long run.

“The most interesting thing we found was that we were asking the wrong question. It's not which is worse for you, fat or sugar, but rather which foods are making so many of us gain weight and why?” Xand wrote.

Their advice? Stay away from processed foods that are loaded with sugar and fat.


TOPICS: Food; Health/Medicine
KEYWORDS: carbs; diet; fat; highfatlowcarb; lowfathighcarb; nutrition; sugar; twindoctors
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1 posted on 01/31/2014 11:51:14 AM PST by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

So Xand was full of crap?


2 posted on 01/31/2014 11:55:24 AM PST by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: nickcarraway

I am reading this article wrong or does it make no sense whatsoever.


3 posted on 01/31/2014 11:57:23 AM PST by traderrob6
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To: nickcarraway

One pair of twins does not a study make. Fats and sugar have differing effects on different people. What Xand describes as the result of low sugar, high fat is what I get from low fat diets.


4 posted on 01/31/2014 11:59:49 AM PST by Ingtar (The NSA - "We're the only part of government who actually listens to the people.")
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To: traderrob6

You’re right, it doesn’t make sense. None.


5 posted on 01/31/2014 12:00:22 PM PST by elcid1970 ("In the modern world, Muslims are living fossils.")
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To: traderrob6

They set out to prove one over the other, and found out it’s both. Meh.


6 posted on 01/31/2014 12:00:43 PM PST by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: nickcarraway
I'm staying with my low broccoli diet.

It has the advantage of being very easy to stick to.

7 posted on 01/31/2014 12:01:31 PM PST by who_would_fardels_bear
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To: nickcarraway

What diet cuts out vegetables? What fats were allowed/disallowed? What about processed meats?

This wasn’t any kind of valid experiment. It was a silly stunt, leading to a poorly written article, culminating in worthless conclusions.


8 posted on 01/31/2014 12:02:20 PM PST by jjsheridan5
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To: traderrob6
"I am reading this article wrong or does it make no sense whatsoever."

No, I think you got it clearly. Don't eat anything, but don't stop eating, then you might be slow or fast, depending on whether you feel full or not. Weight loss is not guaranteed, but Obamacare premiums will still go up.

9 posted on 01/31/2014 12:02:20 PM PST by Dutchboy88
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To: traderrob6

It... makes no sense.

Was this translated from another language?


10 posted on 01/31/2014 12:02:38 PM PST by rarestia (It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.)
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To: traderrob6
It makes no sense. If the low carb guy had done Atkins properly instead of the usual "no vegetables allowed" lie pushed by the diet's detractors, he would have won easily.
11 posted on 01/31/2014 12:02:47 PM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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To: nickcarraway

Both brothers did drop some weight at the end of the month, but Xand explained to The News that his weight loss came from losing muscle (”Losing muscle is bad news,” he said). He was also closer to being diabetic.

This doesn’t add up, if Xand was the one on the low carb diet, there was no way he was near being diabetic. This is impossible as there would have been little if any sugar in his blood to cause his blood sugar to spike like a diabetic or pre-diabetic... I am either reading this wrong, or something is just not right with this paragraph.


12 posted on 01/31/2014 12:03:03 PM PST by HamiltonJay
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To: nickcarraway

Maybe a balanced diet is better?


13 posted on 01/31/2014 12:03:33 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: traderrob6

I am having trouble following it too.


14 posted on 01/31/2014 12:08:48 PM PST by autumnraine
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To: nickcarraway

This needs more explaining about which twin followed a specific diet, and what the results were for each.

And no fruit or veggies in one of the diets? The outcome of that is obvious.


15 posted on 01/31/2014 12:09:02 PM PST by lurk
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To: nickcarraway

16 posted on 01/31/2014 12:13:04 PM PST by Lucky9teen (No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it. ~ Albert Einstein)
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To: nickcarraway

How much processed food did they eat....this is a really stupid “study”


17 posted on 01/31/2014 12:14:56 PM PST by goodnesswins (R.I.P. Doherty, Smith, Stevens, Woods.)
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To: who_would_fardels_bear

Don’t tell my 2yo. He’ll take broccoli over cake and always wants some of my “green juice “ which is mostly kale, cucumber, green pepper, fresh ginger, tomato, and carrot juice with cinnamon and garlic.


18 posted on 01/31/2014 12:15:30 PM PST by freedomfiter2 (Brutal acts of commission and yawning acts of omission both strengthen the hand of the devil.)
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To: traderrob6

Lo carb diets still have lots if veggies. It’s a shame this wasn’t a real study...


19 posted on 01/31/2014 12:17:19 PM PST by Mamzelle
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To: rarestia

Yes, British.


20 posted on 01/31/2014 12:18:01 PM PST by woodbutcher1963
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