In 1971, a 27-year-old, 456-pound man went to his local university department of medicine to get advice on how to lose weight. Their response was startling but simple: stop eating altogether. While most people would look aghast and think the doctors were nuts, this guy was desperate enough to give it a try. His results over the ensuing weeks were so dramatic that he decided to prolong the fasting deprivation—for more than a year! He ate nothing but vitamins, non-caloric fluids, and yeast for a whopping 382 days. He lost 276 pounds and gained himself a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. What’s more, he did so with no ill health effects. When the doctors checked back in on him five years later, he had gained back only about 15 pounds.
I am often frustrated with all references in the media, popular culture, or personal conversation to metabolism. Most people refer to metabolism in an amorphous way as if it is a magical force that, if properly manipulated, will determine the course of one’s weight loss journey. It’s some energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together. Wait, that’s the force as described by Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars. Regardless most people’s concept of metabolism is just as fantastical and fictional. Continue reading
Full disclosure: I’m a Coke Zero guy. I drink one every day with lunch and am thus biased to some extent. I don’t get money from the industry – although I wouldn’t turn it down (in case the people at Coke are reading this). Even with my biases I think my assessment of the science on the connections between diet soft drinks and weight gain were accurate. It was clear that there was an association between drinking more and weighing more but it was far from clear the Diet Soda was causing weight gain. Overweight people drink more diet soft drinks for clear reasons. They also wear more extra large clothing but that doesn’t mean Joe’s Big and Tall Clothiers causes obesity.
I think we are all aware of a certain human weakness we all have. It is probably the result of a combination of egocentrism, insecurity, and narcissism. Its the feeling of overwhelming joy you get when you have the opprotunity to say “I told you so”. The elation is in proportion to the frustration you felt when another person had the audacity not to listen to your wise and sage-like advice.You know you feel it. I certainly do.
Ok, I admit, the title of this post is a strong one and reeks of the typical over-hyped media nonsense that we here at the WLCR are so strongly fighting against. We all have heard the promises of breakthroughs and weight loss secrets uncovered only to be left disappointed. This was my first thought when I read a recent article about a 7 minute workout that can be done at home without equipment. Really, 7 minutes!?! It seemed a bit infomercial’ish. My initial gut reaction gave way to cautious optimism when I realized that the information was coming from a health and fitness journal published by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) – a reputable and reliable source. So I read on and was glad I did (If you want to read the article yourself, click here). Continue reading
I was sitting in the nurses station at the hospital yesterday when I overheard the telemetry tech talking with one of the nurses about her weight loss plans. My ears perked up and I eavesdropped on their conversation. Perhaps this wasn’t the polite thing to do but considering this weight loss education hobby of mine I let my curiosity win the day. Continue reading
Body types are different. We all know that. People tend to deposit body fat in different areas. It is therefore a common and seemingly reasonable thing for people to target specific areas of the body for weight loss. It is common to see people at the gym on strangely designed exercise machines design to “target” specific trouble spots. Continue reading