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Women's Health Study Results (fat in diet didn't increase risk of heart attack and stroke)
UCLA ^ | Oct. 1, 2006 | UCLA

Posted on 10/07/2006 10:44:59 AM PDT by FairOpinion

Women Consider How to Interpret Health Study Results

October 01, 2006

As results emerge from one of the largest women's health studies ever undertaken, women are trying to sort out how to apply the findings to their own lives.

With more than 160,000 participants, the Women's Health Initiative (WHI) tracked postmenopausal women for seven to 12 years looking at, among other things, the value of menopausal hormone therapy, a low-fat diet, and calcium and vitamin D supplements. UCLA participated in the study under the direction of Howard Judd, M.D., now professor emeritus of obstetrics/gynecology.

Some of the still-emerging results have been stunning. In 2002 and 2004, the WHI abruptly halted its two hormone studies after concluding that the risks- including breast cancer and stroke-outweighed the possible benefits in preventing heart disease.

Other conclusions have been less momentous. One finding suggests that a diet lower in total fat did not significantly reduce the incidence of breast cancer, heart disease or stroke, nor reduce the risk of colorectal cancer in healthy, postmenopausal women.

As for calcium and vitamin D, WHI findings suggest that these supplements in healthy postmenopausal women provide modest benefits in preserving bone mass and preventing hip fractures in certain groups of women, but do not prevent other types of fractures or colorectal cancer.

Should women throw away their hormone therapy (as many abruptly did), eat all the fat they want, and chuck the calcium? Not so fast, experts say. Seeking guidance from a personal physician, who can interpret the findings and apply it to a woman's needs and risk factors, is the sensible road to take.

UCLA geriatrician Elizabeth Whiteman, M.D., notes, "We look at the data and really try to individualize the information for that specific woman-what are her risk factors and goals? "It's key for patients to talk to their doctor about any family history of dementia, stroke, colon cancer and heart disease."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: atkins; cancer; diet; fatindiet; health; heartattack; medicalresearch; medicine; stroke; women; womensdiet
"Other conclusions have been less momentous. One finding suggests that a diet lower in total fat did not significantly reduce the incidence of breast cancer, heart disease or stroke, nor reduce the risk of colorectal cancer in healthy, postmenopausal women. "

I WOULD call this MOMENTOUS -- considering that just now I was reading articles that NY tries to ban transfats in restaurants, the Clinton crusade succeeded in forcing reduction of fats in school snacks.

Of course that is not to say that it's a good idea to eat unlimited amounts of food, but it should wake people up. Note that this was an article in a UCLA small health publication, I couldn't find anything about it in the MSM news.

1 posted on 10/07/2006 10:45:01 AM PDT by FairOpinion
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To: neverdem


2 posted on 10/07/2006 10:45:44 AM PDT by FairOpinion (Dem Foreign Policy: SURRENDER to our enemies. Real conservatives don't help Dems get elected.)
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To: FairOpinion

My friend told me her mom's cholesterol had always tested high. She avoided all 'bad' foods, though she loved them, ate carrots and stuff like that. When she died, they did an autopsy for some other reason. Her arteries were CLEAR. She had consistently tested high.

That anecdote plus this study -- YAH.


3 posted on 10/07/2006 10:48:48 AM PDT by bboop (Stealth Tutor)
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To: bboop

Fat is bad for you, alcohol is bad for you, sugar is bad for you -- then eventually it turns out none of this is actually bad for you, and some of it ( alcohol) is actually very good for you, helps prevent heart disease, keeps your arteries clear, etc.

The bottom line, IMO, is that one shouldn't buy into any of the fad pushed on us by the "food police", but, of course, do everything in moderation.

What they should preach is moderation, instead of the avoidance of the some food or other.

Didn't "medical science" kept telling us for a while that vitamins are useless, then it was discovered that vitamins are indeed very helpful.


4 posted on 10/07/2006 10:54:35 AM PDT by FairOpinion (Dem Foreign Policy: SURRENDER to our enemies. Real conservatives don't help Dems get elected.)
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To: FairOpinion

Unfortunately it doesn't say anything about the effects of gin.


5 posted on 10/07/2006 11:01:24 AM PDT by carola
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To: carola

There are lots of other studies which concluded that alcohol in moderation is very good for you. :)


6 posted on 10/07/2006 11:06:48 AM PDT by FairOpinion (Dem Foreign Policy: SURRENDER to our enemies. Real conservatives don't help Dems get elected.)
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To: bboop
My friend told me her mom's cholesterol had always tested high. She avoided all 'bad' foods, though she loved them, ate carrots and stuff like that. When she died, they did an autopsy for some other reason. Her arteries were CLEAR. She had consistently tested high.

Even though tiny her entire life, my 84 year old mom has had cholesterol levels of 400+ since first testing her. She will be celebrating her 85th birthday Nov. 7th, still sharp as a tack, takes care of her own house, cooking and shopping. A couple of years ago a new doctor wanted her to go on cholesterol pills, as she has been counseled many times and drastically change her diet, I told her to flush the pills and eat what she wants. She takes NO prescription drugs, only her vitamins.

7 posted on 10/07/2006 11:07:19 AM PDT by MontanaBeth (Never forget)
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To: FairOpinion

Popular knowledge (read: popular ignorance) in the MSM and in the universities is dominated by Kellogism, the crankish ideology of a 19th century charlatan and quack who, among other things, administered yogurt high colonic enemas to his neurotic high society patients. The fat, alcohol, sugar, meat, etc. is bad while green leafy rabbit rations are good paradigm stems mostly from his scams.

Long live the Red Onion and a mug of icy cold beer! (The inmates of Kellogg's expensive "San" used to sneak across the road to the Red Onion tavern for a little relief from their "healthy" lifestyles.)


8 posted on 10/07/2006 11:23:35 AM PDT by NaughtiusMaximus (Bush Assassination Flick. Save your liberal friends a few bucks: the black guy in the tux dunnit.)
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To: FairOpinion
I was reading articles that NY tries to ban transfats in restaurants

Trans fats are not the same as fats naturally found in food. Trans fats are a synthesized chemical and is not produced by living things. Let a container of butter and a container of trans fat sit in you garage for a month and you will fiond that the butter is spoiling and attracting certain bugs, but nothing is interested in the trans fat.

9 posted on 10/07/2006 11:33:16 AM PDT by doc30 (Democrats are to morals what and Etch-A-Sketch is to Art.)
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To: FairOpinion

I've been a part of this WHI for the last 11 years, and you are correct, nothing gets published in the MSM. The MSM supports all of the wild ideas and nothing that contradicts there opinions.


10 posted on 10/07/2006 12:15:19 PM PDT by jtill (Lord, please keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth!)
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To: NaughtiusMaximus

I didn't realize The Road to Wellville was based on real people. :)


11 posted on 10/07/2006 12:31:38 PM PDT by abigailsmybaby
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To: abigailsmybaby
I didn't realize The Road to Wellville was based on real people. :)

I really enjoyed that book. Maybe I'll dig it out and read it again.

12 posted on 10/07/2006 12:39:22 PM PDT by DumpsterDiver
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To: DumpsterDiver

I've never read the book, but have watched the movie several times. It's quite funny.


13 posted on 10/07/2006 12:44:45 PM PDT by abigailsmybaby
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To: FairOpinion

That's because fat doesn't make you fat, processed refined sugars and simple carbs do. Duh!


14 posted on 10/07/2006 12:46:18 PM PDT by Larry Lucido
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To: FairOpinion

Lift weights


15 posted on 10/07/2006 2:30:43 PM PDT by larryjohnson
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To: bboop
I have a friend who's cholesterol level was 120 at fifty years old without cholesterol lowering drugs. She had a heart attack at 50 as her father had. He died from his she did not.
16 posted on 10/07/2006 2:32:32 PM PDT by Ditter
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To: DumpsterDiver
Check out the movie The Road to Wellville it is one I can watch over and over and laugh just as hard each time.
17 posted on 10/07/2006 2:36:29 PM PDT by Ditter
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To: FairOpinion
I've thought more than once that I should change my diet because I do eat a lot of fats (I'm a bacon addict) but since I'm not overweight and it doesn't matter, I'll keep on as I am.

It's all heredity anyway.

18 posted on 10/07/2006 2:40:12 PM PDT by tiki
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To: NaughtiusMaximus

and besides, all those greens could give you a case of e-coli.


19 posted on 10/07/2006 2:42:05 PM PDT by tiki
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To: FairOpinion
Road to Wellville bump:


20 posted on 10/07/2006 2:44:01 PM PDT by valkyrieanne
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To: Ditter; abigailsmybaby
Check out the movie The Road to Wellville it is one I can watch over and over and laugh just as hard each time.

I've never read the book, but have watched the movie several times. It's quite funny.

Thanks, you two. I needed another item to qualify for amazon.com's free shipping, so I'll get the movie.

21 posted on 10/07/2006 2:44:17 PM PDT by DumpsterDiver
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To: valkyrieanne; tiki

LOL! Good old Road to Wellville. (I'm going to read that again this winter.) "Health foods" are a curious form of ersatz religion for some people.


22 posted on 10/07/2006 3:27:49 PM PDT by NaughtiusMaximus (Bush Assassination Flick. Save your liberal friends a few bucks: the black guy in the tux dunnit.)
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To: abigailsmybaby
I didn't realize The Road to Wellville was based on real people. :)

Actually, it's amazingly close to reality. One of the more bizzare chapters in American history. (I watch quacks and charlatans in New Age Sedona today and it's amazing how little things have changed and how susceptible rich neurotics are to their scams.)

23 posted on 10/07/2006 3:34:18 PM PDT by NaughtiusMaximus (Bush Assassination Flick. Save your liberal friends a few bucks: the black guy in the tux dunnit.)
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To: DumpsterDiver

24 posted on 10/07/2006 3:36:51 PM PDT by abigailsmybaby
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To: doc30
Trans fats are a synthesized chemical and is not produced by living things.

Hydrogen is a synthesized chemical?

25 posted on 10/07/2006 9:09:25 PM PDT by Mase
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To: Larry Lucido
That's because fat doesn't make you fat, processed refined sugars and simple carbs do

Our overconsumption of carbs is a major reason for our obesity problem in the U.S. However, fat contains 9 calories per gram while carbs offer just 4 calories per gram. Personally, I enjoy foods that are high in both fat and sugar.

26 posted on 10/07/2006 9:15:20 PM PDT by Mase
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To: Mase

Your point about hydrogen is meaningless. The trans fats used in foods are not biologically produced fats. They are based on biologically occuring unsaturated fats and are hydrogenated in order to increase the shelf life.


27 posted on 10/08/2006 8:10:19 AM PDT by doc30 (Democrats are to morals what and Etch-A-Sketch is to Art.)
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To: doc30
Your point about hydrogen is meaningless

The purpose of my post was to point out how ridiculous your alarmist comments sound when you break trans fat down to its basic make-up. You offer nothing to back up your contention that trans fats are bad for us -- other than stating the obvious that they are created by simply adding hydrogen to a naturally occurring unsaturated fat -- and expect us to believe they're detrimental to our health because one attracts bugs and the other doesn't. That's just lame.

Trans fats are used for many reasons. TFA's inhibit oxidation thereby increasing product life. They also give products greater stability and allow cooking at higher temperatures. This is advantageous for frying and many other applications. Hydrogenation also improves the texture, mouth-feel and flavor of a product and since fat is a delivery system for flavor, removing the TFA's from a product will make that product less desirable.

What's the point of your anecdote about leaving saturated fat and trans fat out in the garage for a month? Why does this example offer anything useful? Can you explain why trans fats are any worse for our health than saturated fats?

28 posted on 10/08/2006 9:06:44 PM PDT by Mase
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To: Mase

My point still stands. You know nothing of chemistry except barely enough to be upset whenever someone who actually knows anything disrupts the way you like things to be. You just cannot accept the fact that as we learn more and more about certain synthetic food addditives, we learn more about what happens to them in our bodies. Some are begning, others act in unexpected ways. It's not alarmist at all. These trans fats are synthetic. These chemicals are not biologically produced. Period. Since they are not biologically produced, living things have not adapted to optimally digeting these materials. That means that there are no mechanisms in specifically geared to handling these substances. The body will handle them by existing pathways that can interact with these substances. And don't play word games with the word 'natural' I know full well that all chemicals are natural in the sense they can exist (otherwise they would be supernatural). The context of naturally occurring means something biologically synthesized and/or readily consummed. If trans fats are biologically prepared, they are certainly not common. All the ones we use are synthesized.

It is a known fact that trans fats are not as readily broken down as saturated fats are in the human body. My point about the garage experiment was to show that they really do help extend shelf life because they are not readily digestible by things that naturally break down saturated fats like those in butter. In your body, they spike your LDL, supress your HDL and boost your triglycerides more than saturated fats. A simple google search will give you lots of info on these materials.

What is interesting in this article is the effect of LDL levels in women is very different than in men. It appears this subject is more and more complicated, but it doesn't make it irrelevant.


29 posted on 10/09/2006 6:33:55 AM PDT by doc30 (Democrats are to morals what and Etch-A-Sketch is to Art.)
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To: doc30
My point still stands.

You actually had one?

You know nothing of chemistry except barely enough to be upset whenever someone who actually knows anything disrupts the way you like things to be.

Now that's funny! I can't decide if you're more misinformed about chemistry or economics. Let's look at what passes for knowledge of chemistry according to doc30:

doc30 remedial chemistry class

Do you still want to argue that sucrose mediated satiation takes place in the gut instead of the blood? I notice you never answered my question about how this can be possible when a glucose IV immediately suppresses hunger.

Do you also still believe that our body's efficiency is variable thereby defying the first law of thermodynamics?

doc30 attempts to repeal the laws of thermodynamics

I think it's funny that you lecture me about chemistry and physiology when you don't even understand the metabolic steps in converting glucose to glycogen, glucose to fat or glycogen and fat to glucose.

The only thing that upsets me in these debates is having to school you over and over again about the same things.

You just cannot accept the fact that as we learn more and more about certain synthetic food additives, we learn more about what happens to them in our bodies.

Unfortunately, you don't know enough about the subject to differentiate the truth from all the BS that's out there. What passes for research today is pathetic.

These trans fats are synthetic

So what? Do you not eat any processed foods in your diet at all? Do you realize that about one-quarter of all TFA's we consume occur naturally? Good grief, milk and beef contain TFA's. Do you think milk is nasty stuff too?

These chemicals are not biologically produced. Period.

Are you saying we shouldn't combine any chemicals or use chemicals unless they are in their natural state? That's just loony.

Since they are not biologically produced, living things have not adapted to optimally digeting these materials.

Now you're making me laugh. Did you study chemistry at the Uell Gibbons school of naturalness?

That means that there are no mechanisms in specifically geared to handling these substances.

Where do you come up with this nonsense? Pharmaceutical companies are constantly creating new compounds that the human liver has never seen. Yet, the liver learns to metabolize these chemicals and pass them through the body without any ill effects.

If trans fats are biologically prepared, they are certainly not common.

25% is not common?

All the ones we use are synthesized

75% = all?

It is a known fact that trans fats are not as readily broken down as saturated fats are in the human body

If it's so well known, then please explain why trans fats are not as readily broken down as saturated fats.

My point about the garage experiment was to show that they really do help extend shelf life because they are not readily digestible by things that naturally break down saturated fats like those in butter

This proves nothing unless you can show that the same micro-flora in your gut exist in your garage. Microbes will still attack trans fat foods in your garage or anywhere else. The more double bonds a product has the the more susceptible it is to oxidation. Since hydrogenation reduces the number of double bonds, it inhibits oxidation -- but doesn't prevent it. Hydrogenation does nothing to stop mold or yeast growth though. Your example is meaningless.

In your body, they spike your LDL, supress your HDL and boost your triglycerides more than saturated fats.

Your certitude of this shows you really haven't invested the time necessary to understand the issue. The most legitimate research shows that trans-fats behave similarly to saturated fats. Trans fats also contain a compound called conjugated linoleic acid, which very recent research has shown to be helpful in fighting cancer and decreasing plaque.

If you understood how LDL cholesterol interferes with chilomicrons transferring fat through the bloodstream, and how that results in plaque forming on blood vessels, then you'd know that both TFA's and saturated fats cause the same problem in almost identical degrees. The fear of TFA's is based on a lack of knowledge and is supported by junk science. Public policy driven by junk science and the uneducated MSM is far scarier than anything industry is adding to our food. Your body will produce more cholesterol naturally than you could ever manage through diet. That's why family history is one of the most important questions in determining who is at risk for CHD. This is why for most people with serious cholesterol problems medication is the only real method for managing it. Smoking and high blood pressure as a cause for CHD takes a back seat to all this nonsense about TFA's, which when consumed in moderation, have no ill effect on our health whatsoever. That others, especially conservatives enable this nonsense is mind boggling.

30 posted on 10/09/2006 8:40:55 AM PDT by Mase
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To: Mase
If you want to go back to the HFCS issue, we can.

Do you also still believe that our body's efficiency is variable thereby defying the first law of thermodynamics?

Yes, I still stand by my point in that thread. But I will admit I was playing loose with definitions and you rightfully caught me on that. I was trying to keep things at a very lay level. But if you want to be a definition cop, go ahead. For the 'thermodynamics issue' sure, the actual chemical reactions have the same thermodynamic properties, but that's not the point I was making and I believe you know it. The body's metabolism does have differing 'efficiency' levels via how the pathways are utilized. Care to explain why, with all other variables constant, one can gain weight when consuming fewer calories or lose weight when consuming more? It happens all the time and is a big issue with dieters. Even though the chemical processes and pathways are the same, they are operating in parallel and/or at different capacities in your system, analagous in ways to the throttle on a car. When you consume fewer calories, your body will reduce the capacity of these pathways, hence you will not be burning as many calories (sorry for giving the impression that it was the chemistry itself changing). It's your body's way of making more efficient use of scarce energy resources. Alternatively, when you exercise vigorously, you will continue to burn calories after you've stopped exerting yourself. The energy just gets wasted as heat. Or how about people with thyroid problems? The specific chemistries are the same for energy utilization, but these people can have very serious weight issues.

Are you saying we shouldn't combine any chemicals or use chemicals unless they are in their natural state? That's just loony.

Where did I say that? What is at issue here are the chronic effects of novel chemicals in our systems. There is a lot we don't know about low level chronic exposure to many things. If you know anything about chemistry at all, you would be aware of this. I was quite honest when I said that there were no specific adaptations already present in our systems. If a non-biologically occurring material has never been ingested before, how can there be a specific mechanism to handle it? The existing mechanisms may be able to, but that does not mean those mechanisms evolved specifically for the novel substance in question. The body simply uses what it has to handle the new material. Sometimes without side effeects, sometimes with.

Where do you come up with this nonsense? Pharmaceutical companies are constantly creating new compounds that the human liver has never seen. Yet, the liver learns to metabolize these chemicals and pass them through the body without any ill effects.

You are quite right that our livers will try to process anything put into us and many materials are broken down in our systems and the liver can be quite versatile. It can handle some new chemicals well, others it has difficult with. Do you realize how many drug candidates pharmaceutical companies synthesize that would be harmful as medications than what they do produce as marketable drugs? Your point is obvious if you only look at what they market, not what never gets out of R&D. They aren't going to put something on the market that is obviously toxic. And after a new drug has been on the market for a while, new, negative effects can then be discovered. Look at Vioxx as an example as a drug with unexpected issues after release. Or what about Tylanol? People have suffered liver failure from this over the counter medication.

Your body will produce more cholesterol naturally than you could ever manage through diet. That's why family history is one of the most important questions in determining who is at risk for CHD. This is why for most people with serious cholesterol problems medication is the only real method for managing it. Smoking and high blood pressure as a cause for CHD takes a back seat to all this nonsense about TFA's, which when consumed in moderation, have no ill effect on our health whatsoever. That others, especially conservatives enable this nonsense is mind boggling.

On this I agree with you. With 6 billion people on this planet, there is a lot of variability in what's in our genes and that's where the biggest risks do come from. Predisposition is very important and it explains why high cholestrol can impact some people more than others, as evidenced from the anecdotes on this thread. Smoking is also a big issue. Moderation is an important point, too. Sugary beverages and fatty foods are all OK, but if you over consume them, then you can have problems. One of my issues is the ubiquitousness of these materials. It is very hard to find something to drink without HFCS, or sugar in general, being added to it. Snack foods seem to be dropping the trans fats, too, but as a combination of marketing and perveived health benefits. And it also seems calorie rich foods are also the cheapest foods, too. But if you eat a bag a day of chips and a 2.5 L bottle of soda, your over consumption will be a bigger risk factor healthwise than the magnitude of the metabolic issues we are arguing here.

I do have one question for you. Have you ever suffered from a significant weight issue and managed to get back into shape? I've gone down that path and it takes more than just understanding basic metabolism. One does learn alot from experience about how their body handles what goes into it and it isn't an easy lifestyle change at the beginning.

31 posted on 10/09/2006 2:07:45 PM PDT by doc30 (Democrats are to morals what and Etch-A-Sketch is to Art.)
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To: doc30
Care to explain why, with all other variables constant, one can gain weight when consuming fewer calories or lose weight when consuming more? It happens all the time and is a big issue with dieters.

Do you remember the first law of thermodynamics? You can't get something from nothing. Now you're trying to tell me that you can create mass? Are you really saying that you can gain weight by consuming fewer calories than you burn?

Look, your metabolism responds to what's available. To lose weight you have to lose fat. Burning glycogen happens fairly quickly because your body only stores so much in the liver and muscles. Fat catabolism however, is a slow process. If you've stored a lot of body fat it's going to take a long time to lose it. It may appear that you're gaining weight but to say you can create something out of nothing is right back to where we were during our last discussion. It can't happen. Maybe the change in diet has you thinking you're consuming fewer calories when you're actually eating foods with a higher caloric content. Maybe you're talking about losing water weight and then gaining it back. It's hard for me to say but even if you've only had basic chemistry, you should know that your body responds to mass action principles. Since most all of the reactions taking place in your body are in equilibrium, if A moves faster then B will also move faster (and so on). You're trying hard to defy these principles and it's just not possible.

Anyway, the problem in trying to deal with your anecdotes is that they're just anecdotes. You offer no back up to support any of your mistakes.

If a non-biologically occurring material has never been ingested before, how can there be a specific mechanism to handle it?

So what? Can you name any food ingredient that has been recalled after it entered the market because it was found to be detrimental to our health? They pulled saccharine years ago but that was based on foolish studies and has since been approved for use. You worry about things without reason. Food ingredients are tested to the n'th degree before they're allowed to be sold. This is much ado about nothing.

You are quite right that our livers will try to process anything put into us and many materials are broken down in our systems and the liver can be quite versatile.

You understate the marvel that is the human liver. The liver doesn't try to process things, it actually learns how to do it. The liver is an organ that educates itself. We send all sort of compounds to it that it's never seen before and it immediately learns to metabolize them. Just amazing.

Your fear of what you call synthesized chemicals is irrational. If you drink coffee you should stop immediately because it contains more than 600 chemicals of which 200 or so haven't even been identified. Of the 400 or so that have been identified none of them are found in nature -- they are a product of roasting the bean. If you ever saw the chemical structure of some of these ingredients it would scare the hell out of you.

Another example of your irrational fear is with HFCS. You're probably still arguing that the chemical structures of fructose and glucose from HFCS are different than fructose and glucose from hydrolyzed sucrose. They are not. Fructose is fructose and glucose is glucose. Your body cannot differentiate the source. Once again you think that because it's a man made ingredient that somehow your body doesn't recognize it. Anyone who has studied basic chemistry or nutrition can't believe this and consider themselves rational.

And after a new drug has been on the market for a while, new, negative effects can then be discovered

If you can repeal the laws of thermodynamics maybe you can also remove all the risk from life. Making miracle drugs comes with a lot of risks and as humans, we make mistakes. Science learns as it progresses. Liberals believe we can regulate our way to complete safety. Do you agree? When you look at the number of drugs that have been pulled for side effects vs. the total number of new drugs brought to market, we have a pretty damn good track record. Yes Tylenol with alcohol can cause liver failure. Does that mean Tylenol should be taken off the market? How many lives, especially children, have been saved by this drug? If you follow the Vioxx case closely, you will know that several juries have ruled in favor of Merck. Vioxx may end up back on the market.

Have you ever suffered from a significant weight issue and managed to get back into shape?

Depends on how you define significant. I've lost weight before and I know how difficult it can be. First you have to shrink your stomach. Then you have to suffer through the slow process of fat catabolism while your stomach is screaming for you to feed it. This is not an easy thing to manage and it's one of the major reason why so many people suffer chronic weight problems. It still doesn't prove that the laws of thermodynamics can be repealed.

32 posted on 10/10/2006 2:09:58 PM PDT by Mase
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