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Arterial Function Deteriorates on Atkins Diet
Family Practice News ^ | 1 August 2009 | NEIL OSTERWEIL

Posted on 09/05/2009 5:10:07 PM PDT by neverdem

BOSTON — Proponents of the Atkins low-carbohydrate/high saturated fat diet say that you can have your steak and eat it, too, and still lose weight.

But the adverse metabolic consequences are too heavy a price to pay, Australian investigators reported at a symposium sponsored by the International Atherosclerosis Society.

After 1 year, overweight and obese patients randomly assigned to the Atkins diet or to a low-saturated-fat, high-carbohydrate diet lost similar amounts of weight. But patients on the Atkins diet had a deterioration in flow-mediated arterial dilatation, a marker for cardiovascular disease, and higher levels of LDL cholesterol than at baseline, reported Dr. Peter Clifton of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization in Adelaide, South Australia.

“What I really want to know is, does the early elevation of HDL, which has been shown convincingly [with the Atkins diet], and lowering of triglycerides plus the lowering of blood pressure and glucose, outweigh the rise in LDL cholesterol that you see in some individuals in some studies?” said Dr. Clifton.

He and colleagues analyzed the effects of two diets on flow-mediated dilatation (FMD), a measurement of the ability of blood vessels to dilate in response to increases in blood flow. FMD is reduced in both cardiovascular disease and diabetes, but whether it improves with significant weight loss is unclear; if so, it might be related to either decreases in glucose or in LDL, Dr. Clifton said.

The study's aim was to evaluate the effects on markers of endothelial dysfunction and cardiovascular disease risk of a very-low-carbohydrate/high-saturated-fat diet, and an isocaloric high-carbohydrate/low-saturated-fat diet.

The outcomes were FMD and markers of endothelial dysfunction, including cellular adhesion molecules, inhibitors and promoters of fibrinolysis, adiponectin, glucose, insulin, C-reactive protein (CRP), lipids, and apolipoprotein B.

The study involved 70 men and women aged 16-60 years with body mass index between 27 and 40 kg/m2, and markers for the presence of the metabolic syndrome.

After 1 year, the 33 patients on the Atkins diet lost slightly more weight on average (14.5 kg), than did the 36 patients on the low-fat diet (11.5 kg), but this difference was not significant.

There was no diet-specific effect on blood pressure, glucose, insulin or CRP, but the Atkins diet was superior to the low-fat diet at decreasing triglycerides and increasing HDL. The Atkins diet also was associated with increases in LDL levels.

Overall, 49 patients (26 on the Atkins diet, 23 on the low-fat diet) underwent FMD assessment. Endothelial function decreased by almost half from baseline among patients in the Atkins diet, compared with no change among patients on the low-fat diet. “Overall, FMD deteriorated after 12 months on a high-saturated-fat Atkins diet, despite their fantastic weight loss and improvement in all those other things,” Dr. Clifton said. “Solely because the LDL increased, it outweighed all the other measures of weight loss. The other measures of endothelial function that we took actually improved except ICAM-1 on the Atkins diet, so there seems to be a separation of endothelial functions as expressed by nitric oxide and these other endothelial markers.

“This really calls into question that fantastic elevation of HDL [with the Atkins diet] as being a good thing or having anything much to do with cardiovascular health,” he added.

Dr. Clifton disclosed that he has coauthored diet books, but they do not include the information he presented.

The meat-heavy Atkins diet increased both HDL and LDL cholesterol.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Testing
KEYWORDS: atkinsdiet; health; metabolicsyndrome; type2diabetes
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It's a small sample, but these studies are not easy.
1 posted on 09/05/2009 5:10:08 PM PDT by neverdem
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To: neverdem

A diet high in non root vegetables and high quality protein is probably the best diet you can eat. Paleolithic is the way to go.


2 posted on 09/05/2009 5:13:33 PM PDT by LukeL (Yasser Arafat: "I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize")
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To: austinmark; FreedomCalls; IslandJeff; JRochelle; MarMema; Txsleuth; Newtoidaho; texas booster; ...
FReepmail me if you want on or off the diabetes ping list.
3 posted on 09/05/2009 5:14:02 PM PDT by neverdem (Xin loi minh oi)
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To: neverdem

Unless the study makes some effort to differentiate in terms of genetic isolates and so forth the results are always highly questionable.


4 posted on 09/05/2009 5:14:50 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: neverdem

Wait.

They’re saying that unlimited red meat, cheese, butter, and eggs are bad for your arteries? Who knew?

Next, they’ll say that smoking is bad for your lungs, and a fifth of Scotch a day is bad for your liver.

Will it never end?


5 posted on 09/05/2009 5:15:45 PM PDT by southernnorthcarolina (Now with ConstructionCam! Click on my name and follow the progress.)
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To: neverdem

self ping


6 posted on 09/05/2009 5:17:02 PM PDT by kalee (01/20/13 The end of an error.... Obama even worse than Carter.)
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To: Jemian

ping!


7 posted on 09/05/2009 5:20:40 PM PDT by lysie (A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong gives it a superficial appearance of being right.T.Paine)
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To: southernnorthcarolina
I don't believe very fat people can handle refined carbohydrates. When they're not dieting, most fat people ingest too many calories of all types of food, so Atkins at least cuts the most troublesome foods out of their diets. Even assuming this study is valid, its findings may not be relevant to obese people. When people are saddled with hundreds of pounds of fat and addicted to bagels and muffins, the long-term dangers of too much steak don't much matter.
8 posted on 09/05/2009 5:24:42 PM PDT by utahagen
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To: neverdem

Did they check what effect the high-carb low-fat diet had on the samples blood sugar processing?


9 posted on 09/05/2009 5:25:25 PM PDT by Dr. Sivana (There is no salvation in politics.)
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To: neverdem

You can still do low-fat on Atkins. They aren’t mutually exclusive.


10 posted on 09/05/2009 5:28:34 PM PDT by bgill (The evidence simply does not support the official position of the Obama administration)
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To: neverdem

“There was no diet-specific effect on … glucose, insulin …”

This is odd. Isn’t lowering glucose and insulin the point and the base of the mechanism by which low carb diets work?


11 posted on 09/05/2009 5:34:33 PM PDT by Buckhead
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To: bgill

I used to work with a guy who did Atkins as part of a group. There was only one member of the group who did not lose significant weight. Turned out she was eating a stick of butter, rolled in cinnamon, every night for ‘dessert’.


12 posted on 09/05/2009 5:35:27 PM PDT by nina0113
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To: bgill
You’re right. I think Atkins (high-fat or low-fat) as a jump start for a few weeks, then transitioning to the Zone are the ways to go for most fat people. (I just don’t believe a few weeks on a high-fat diet every, say, six months is going to be dangerous to most people.)
13 posted on 09/05/2009 5:39:54 PM PDT by utahagen
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To: lysie

Thanks, lysie. I’d like to know more about the test and I’d like to see it repeated by other labs several more times. So far, and I was checked out thoroughly last summer, there has been absolutely no adverse results and with the additional benefit of not gaining weight.

I didn’t start losing weight, however, until I began the B12 injections.


14 posted on 09/05/2009 5:41:37 PM PDT by Jemian (WAR EAGLE!)
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To: neverdem

The only diet that works is the GOYAADMEL dIet.

That would be the get off you ass and do more, eat less diet.


15 posted on 09/05/2009 5:46:17 PM PDT by trumandogz (The Democrats are driving us to Socialism at 100 MPH -The GOP is driving us to Socialism at 97.5 MPH)
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To: trumandogz

I’m beginning to believe the ONLY way to lose weight is with the lap band or gastric bypass surgery.

EVERY time I run into someone who’s lost weight that’s how they did it...


16 posted on 09/05/2009 5:52:10 PM PDT by queenkathy (Pray 4 Josh... www.carepages.com ( joshuaourwarrior) brain injury from allergy shot)
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To: neverdem

Well...I’m about to have all my cholesterols tested...and I’ve been on a pretty much Paleolithic diet for about 2 months.....and I have a genetic LDL issue....(small, dense, non-buyoant ldl).....I am NOT hungry eating this way, and I lost weight...BUT, I only eat GRASS Fed meat, whenever possible.


17 posted on 09/05/2009 5:52:40 PM PDT by goodnesswins (George Orwell would be proud. Truth are lies, Slavery is Freedom, Oppression is Feminism.)
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To: neverdem

Just more BS trying to make sure we all turn into vegetarians. Millions of people have lost weight with the Atkins diet and I would be that they didn’t have any higher incident of heart disease than people who didn’t. Why didn’t they do a 5 year study of people who lost weight on the diet and see what the incident rate of heart attacks were compared to a control group?


18 posted on 09/05/2009 5:57:11 PM PDT by calex59 (Hope for a new job counts for creating a job! The dimwits are truly insane.)
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To: Buckhead
This is odd. Isn’t lowering glucose and insulin the point and the base of the mechanism by which low carb diets work?

No, it's by moderating swings in glucose and insulin levels. No spikes in blood sugar caused by sugars and low "roughage" carbs. No "downs" after the insulin kicks in.

19 posted on 09/05/2009 6:00:22 PM PDT by El Gato ("The Second Amendment is the RESET button of the United States Constitution." -- Doug McKay)
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To: neverdem

Anyone who only loses 30 pounds IN A YEAR on the Atkins diet ain’t doing it right. And it is probably is what is skewing their cholesterol results.


20 posted on 09/05/2009 6:05:32 PM PDT by VeniVidiVici (Democrat - The new Party of National Socialism. Pelosi and Kosmas - founding members.)
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To: queenkathy
The people I know who have had surgery to lose weight were those who refused to be active and instead sat in front of a TV and stuffed their faces. And while they have lost weight, they are not healthy.
21 posted on 09/05/2009 6:09:01 PM PDT by trumandogz (The Democrats are driving us to Socialism at 100 MPH -The GOP is driving us to Socialism at 97.5 MPH)
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To: neverdem
But patients on the Atkins diet had a deterioration in flow-mediated arterial dilatation, a marker for cardiovascular disease, and higher levels of LDL cholesterol than at baseline

Gosh, who could have ever predicted or even imagined that a "diet" consisting mainly of meat, eggs, and full-fat dairy products could have adverse effects on the arteries.

22 posted on 09/05/2009 6:09:55 PM PDT by jiggyboy (Ten per cent of poll respondents are either lying or insane)
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To: neverdem

Woody Allen was right in Sleeper.

‘They didn’t realize that the healthiest foods include steak, cream pies, and hot fudge. Tobacco is also vindicated.’


23 posted on 09/05/2009 6:10:39 PM PDT by keving (We get the government we vote for)
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To: neverdem
After 1 year, the 33 patients on the Atkins diet lost slightly more weight on average (14.5 kg), than did the 36 patients on the low-fat diet (11.5 kg), but this difference was not significant.

20 - 25% difference in the weight loss! It may amount to less than 7 pounds, but if the stats were on the other side, I'm sure they would be touting the **huge** statistical difference.

24 posted on 09/05/2009 6:10:52 PM PDT by Stegall Tx (Democrats: raising your taxes; cheating on theirs.)
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To: El Gato

I am not super smart on this, but I’ve read Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes, which is very, very convincing about the mechanisms of obesity, weight loss, and carbohydrate metabolism.

I may be off a little, but what I have gotten out of that is that high carbohydrate intake drives insulin levels up which deposits fat into fat cells. Low carbohydrate intake keeps insulin levels low, and fat is mobilized out of fat cells as fuel. Chronically high carbohydrate intake will make you fat. Chronically low carbohydrate intake will make you lose weight. This why on an Atkins diet weight can be lost even at high caloric intake and satiety, while weight is often not lost or even is gained on diets which are lower in calories but higher in carbohydrates and on which people are hungry all the time.

This is not necessarily inconsistent with what you said.


25 posted on 09/05/2009 6:16:24 PM PDT by Buckhead
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To: utahagen
You’re right. I think Atkins (high-fat or low-fat) as a jump start for a few weeks, then transitioning to the Zone are the ways to go for most fat people

The Atkins diet consists of four phases:

induction,
ongoing weight loss,
pre-maintenance and
lifetime maintenance

See here


26 posted on 09/05/2009 6:18:36 PM PDT by Uri’el-2012 (Psalm 119:174 I long for Your salvation, YHvH, Your law is my delight.)
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To: neverdem

I tried it once, years ago. Lost weight fast, but had no energy. It wasn’t worth it.


27 posted on 09/05/2009 6:19:00 PM PDT by buccaneer81 (ECOMCON)
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To: nina0113

I really like butter...

But...

Eewww...


28 posted on 09/05/2009 6:28:04 PM PDT by El Sordo
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I highly recommend anyone trying an Atkin’s tyle diet read a book called “Protein Power” by Drs. Eades and Eades. It will give you an incredibly clear explanation of why and How the Low carb diet works on a metabolic level, including its manipulation of micro-hormones known as eicosaniods, and how to deal with the problem of increased arachidonic acid (found in red meat) how it likely is causing the effect described in this study, and how to easily replace it with healthier Alpha-lionlenic acid (through a marinade of all things)

Properly done, the Low Carb diet will likely cause you not only to lose weight (personally I lost 100lbs in less than six months and about 80 of it in three months) but it will decrease your blood pressure chemically (mine went from my natural 180/100 to 135/80-the same effect I got with a daily three drug cocktail of Diovan 160, Hctz 25, and Toporol 50) Increase your HDL and and lower Your LDL (by turning on a switch that causes your body to scour cholesterol from your blood stream rather than manufacturing it cellularly) and Opening up your airways (after two weeks on the diet I was able to double the length and intensity of my daily aerobic exercise—my father was able to go from daily use of an asthma inhaler to once a week or less)

Bottom line is this: The Low carb diet works spectacularly, and the Modern medical establishment’s stupid focus on low-fat diets is traceable to a poltical campaign by one crusading senator with no formal medical training in the 1970’s (name escapes me right now) NOT science.


29 posted on 09/05/2009 7:01:08 PM PDT by Probonopublico
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To: neverdem
Much to do about nothing, one study does not make fact.
30 posted on 09/05/2009 7:20:11 PM PDT by org.whodat (Vote: Chuck De Vore in 2012.)
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To: utahagen
When people are saddled with hundreds of pounds of fat and addicted to bagels and muffins, the long-term dangers of too much steak don't much matter.

Bingo!!

31 posted on 09/05/2009 7:21:58 PM PDT by org.whodat (Vote: Chuck De Vore in 2012.)
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To: trumandogz
Also known as the ELE diet.

EAT LESS AND EXERCISE.

32 posted on 09/05/2009 7:28:50 PM PDT by Lizavetta (In Communism everything is free. But there isn't any of it.)
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To: Buckhead
This is odd. Isn’t lowering glucose and insulin the point and the base of the mechanism by which low carb diets work?

I had the impression that was at least part of it. I'm wondering if it is too low carb, then maybe your body goes into gluconeogenesis, i.e. making more glucose.

Your brain only works on glucose, IIRC. It may send signals, basically feed me, that we don't have any clues about yet, that control the plasma glucose concentration.

33 posted on 09/05/2009 7:34:44 PM PDT by neverdem (Xin loi minh oi)
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To: queenkathy

“I’m beginning to believe the ONLY way to lose weight is with the lap band or gastric bypass surgery.

EVERY time I run into someone who’s lost weight that’s how they did it...”

You obviously don’t meet people that get significant aerobic exercize, watch calories, etc.

IOW your contacts want an solution for their inability to control their behaior.

Exercize is one of the keys to a healthy lifestyle.


34 posted on 09/05/2009 7:36:38 PM PDT by truth_seeker
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To: lysie; Jemian

Yoo hoo - -over here.


35 posted on 09/05/2009 7:38:51 PM PDT by SnarlinCubBear (Sarcasma - Comforting relief from the use of irony, mocking and conveying contempt)
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To: neverdem

Anyone who is facing kidney failure from diabetes cannot use the Atkins diet. The by-products of protein metabolism (such as ammonia), which are produced by the liver, will overload and finish off the kidneys.


36 posted on 09/05/2009 7:46:51 PM PDT by Nighttime in America
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To: jiggyboy
Gosh, who could have ever predicted or even imagined that a "diet" consisting mainly of meat, eggs, and full-fat dairy products could have adverse effects on the arteries.

I lost 40 lbs on Atkins. It stays off as long as I stick to it. The diet does not consist of eating as much meat, eggs and fully-fat dairy products as you like. I had never eaten as many vegetables before I started Atkins. If you do it correctly, the meat and dairy products are portion controlled. When I'm sticking to it, I have more energy than when I fall back into my carb addiction ways of eating.

37 posted on 09/05/2009 7:50:08 PM PDT by reformed_dem (And DON'T call me Shirley)
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To: Buckhead
This is not necessarily inconsistent with what you said.

Indeed it's not. And what you say is the "theory". I lost about 40-50 lbs, needing to lose 100 more, and stabilized. Lately I've gone off the wagon and gained back 10-20 lbs. You get really, really hungry for bread. :(.

38 posted on 09/05/2009 7:51:49 PM PDT by El Gato ("The Second Amendment is the RESET button of the United States Constitution." -- Doug McKay)
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To: queenkathy

I lost over 20 lbs this year. For every ten days, I spend 4 days doing anaerobic exercise and 4 days using an eliptical.


39 posted on 09/05/2009 7:52:13 PM PDT by death2tyrants
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To: Jemian

I’m curious to know what the B-12 injections do to help lose weight. Are they administered by a doc or do you do them yourself? Thanks for the info.


40 posted on 09/05/2009 7:54:15 PM PDT by SpitfyrAce
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To: neverdem

The woman who is the moderator of the low carb diet forum at about.com has a rebuttal to this study. She makes some valid points about the flaws in this study.

At junkfoodscience blog at blogspot, Sandy cites some research that says that no diet in particular has ever been shown to be effective for diabetics long term.

There is so much more that is not known about diabetes than is known - you have to approach all claims with a healthy dose of skepticism. I wish there were some absolute answers.


41 posted on 09/05/2009 8:08:23 PM PDT by Pining_4_TX
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To: queenkathy
I’m beginning to believe the ONLY way to lose weight is with the lap band or gastric bypass surgery.

Don't count on it. One of my neighbors had the procedure done at great expense and is still obese. If someone is determined to be fat, she's going to be fat even if she has to inhale the food through her nose.

You have to exercise to lose weight. Few people who lose weight are willing to impose the self-discipline on themselves to exercise three times a day to keep that metabolic rate up. They try to cut back on calories and diet in different ways, and it doesn't work. They should all go on South Beach (a modified version of Atkins) and exercise more, through aerobic, weight-training, and sport exercise (two of those three on each day, plus a long walk, hike, bike-ride, horseback ride, or swim).

42 posted on 09/05/2009 8:12:02 PM PDT by ottbmare (Ein Reich, ein Volk, ein Obama!)
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To: ImaTexan

PING


43 posted on 09/05/2009 9:01:45 PM PDT by bjcintennessee (Don't Sweat the Small Stuff)
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To: SpitfyrAce

I could be all wrong about this, but I think that the B12 speeds up my metabolism. It is the only noticeable difference in my habits but I have lost perhaps 30 pounds since the end of March. I was 180 then. I haven’t weighed myself since but my clothes are much looser.

I began the injections because it is suspected I have a pernicious anemia or some type of B12 deficiency. I have been anemic and I’ve been very tired as well as showing a lot of other symptoms. As a guess, and in consultation with a nurse, I began with 1mg injections a day.

I immediately saw (immediately meaning within a week!) a lessening of the symptoms, most notably the “fungus-in-the-brain” feeling and the bouts of dizziness. So, I increased the dosage. At one point I’ve injected as much as 6 mg. a day. That was at the end of May and through the middle of June. I had a set-back from two bouts of malaria. Malaria parasites eat up red blood cells and they just had a feast on all my young tender cells!

I’m sorry. This is a long answer to your short question.

I do inject myself. I had been shown how to inject waaaaaay back in ‘93 and I watched a video on the internet about it in April as a refresher. I’ve been injecting since about my third day on the treatment. I didn’t have energy enough to track down a nurse every day.

I am fortunate that I live in a country where I can purchase many drugs that I need easily. B12 is one. In the US you must have a doctor’s prescription and sometimes docs are hard to convince. Unfortunately, living next to the jungle as I do, sometimes supplies run out. I’ve had to scale back my injections and ration what I have. I have an order coming from Jakarta and it should be here in a week. I honestly do not know what I’d do if I lived in the states. Something expensive, I bet.


44 posted on 09/05/2009 9:26:48 PM PDT by Jemian (WAR EAGLE!)
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To: neverdem

Atkins still died, and was overweight to boot.


45 posted on 09/05/2009 9:33:02 PM PDT by Clemenza (Remember our Korean War Veterans)
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To: ottbmare

FWIW, I have lost my weight w/o exercise. Basically, I don’t have enough energy yet to exercise. My caloric intake per day is about 600 to 1000 calories a day. Pre-B12 I had no weight loss. Post-B12, the weight is finally coming off.

I just recently added some responsibilities which tire me out significantly. If I had not added those, I would probably be swimming again.

Not everyone is able to exercise, but they can still lose weight.


46 posted on 09/05/2009 9:34:58 PM PDT by Jemian (WAR EAGLE!)
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To: Clemenza
Fell on the ice and hit his head, IIRC.

Not cardio-related.

Cheers!

47 posted on 09/06/2009 12:38:42 AM PDT by grey_whiskers (The opinions are solely those of the author and are subject to change without notice.)
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To: Nighttime in America

IANAD, but I suspect you’re wrong. It’s the high glucose levels which play havoc with the kidneys, and reducing them is more important than eating less protein.


48 posted on 09/06/2009 12:46:42 AM PDT by MetaThought
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To: LukeL

Do you really think so with the extreme genetic modification going on? Aren’t you concerned about those extra bits of DNA mucking up your own? At least if you are eating animal meat, the animal can only be somewhat genetically modified without killing it. No such thing as non GM food, while they may not have used GM seed, pollination takes care of that.


49 posted on 09/06/2009 1:37:02 AM PDT by momincombatboots (The last experience of the sinner is the horrible enslavement of the freedom he desired. -C.S. Lewis)
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To: neverdem

Interesting. Thanks for the ping.


50 posted on 09/06/2009 7:53:59 AM PDT by GOPJ (- - - - - - "The Race Card - Only losers play it" - - - - - - - KentTrappedInLiberalSeattle)
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