Obesity

Does How You Lose Weight Matter?

Weight Loss

Healthy Weight Loss

WEIGHT LOSS REVERSES DIABETES

In 2011, scientists at Newcastle University discovered that diabetes is caused when excess fat gets stored in the liver and pancreas. Since then they have been aggressively looking at weight loss as a method to reverse diabetes. Some say it does not matter how you lose weight as long as you get it off. Is that true?

Since Dr. Atkins 1972 Diet Revolution[i] it has become increasingly common to see people follow a high-protein, low-carb diets as a way to lose weight. Many similar diet books, such as the South-Beach or Paleo diets quickly sprang up, also advocating high-protein, low-carb diets.  No doubt, you have also heard that there are dangers associated with these diets but feel helplessly lost without a clue of what to do, yet feel desperate to do something to relieve yourself of some of those extra pounds.

The Ingredient that Makes Diets Work

Green leafy vegetables

Healthy Greens

Having studied most of the dietary approaches, I feel confident in saying that there is a common thread that runs through all the diet plans which work to promote better long term health. They all advocate increasing the quantity of vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, grains and seeds in the diet. The best diets advocate eating a variety of whole, unprocessed foods, especially the green leafy vegetables and colorful, non-starchy vegetables. These foods contain the highest quantity of nutrients per calorie. When you eat any diet that is high in these constituents, your health will improve. But what about diets that do not contain substantial amounts of these foods?

Cardiovascular Disease Among People with Diabetes

Here is something to consider. According the American Heart Association, 68% of people age 65 or older with diabetes will die of heart disease, not diabetes.[ii] Why is that? It is because diabetes and cardiovascular disease are caused by the same underlying problem—inflammation. If inflammation is the underlying cause, why are patients not aggressively treated for inflammation instead of focusing on the blood sugar? Clearly, if 68% of people with diabetes are dying of cardiovascular disease, there are many more who have it but die of something else. How many of them actually die of diabetes? How many others are dying of other inflammatory diseases? In order to improve their diabetes, many people pursue strategies of losing weight without considering what kind of impact their course of action might have on their cardiovascular disease? Different labels have been put on these diseases which may be distracting patients from the real solution. It is imperative that the whole person be considered when deciding on an important intervention like a weight loss strategy.

Effects of Eating More Vegetables

A diet high in green leafy and colorful vegetables works by providing your body with all the nutrients required for cellular growth. When these substances are available in sufficient quantity healing occurs and inflammation is decreased. Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn recommends that cardiovascular patients eat (chew) greens several times a day. He reports that high fat diets make the inside lining of arteries like Velcro, causing them to hold on to cholesterol, whereas, eating greens six times a day makes the arterial linings slick like Teflon, preventing cardiovascular disease. B. Poljsak, PhD states that due to all the processed foods being eaten, 65% of Adults are eating a nutrient deficient diets, which lead to inflammation. But 80% of young people are eating nutrient deficient diets. The point is, eating vegetables decreases inflammation, making both cardiovascular disease and diabetes better.

Effect of Diet on Coronary Blood Flow

Blood Flow

Blood Flow

In a study done, comparing a whole-foods, plant-based diet with a low-carb, high-protein diet researchers discovered that the whole-foods, plant-based diet increased blood flow to the heart by 40%. The low-carb, high-protein diet decreased blood flow to the heart by 40% compared to the Standard American Diet. In a population that is at high risk for cardiovascular disease, like people with diabetes, a 40% reduction in coronary blood flow represents a huge increase in risk for heart disease.[iii]

A Case in Point

Stan was a coworker who learned that I was going to begin teaching a classes in how to reverse diabetes. He told me that he had been diagnosed with diabetes 14 years earlier. His fasting blood sugars customarily ran in the 180’s; he had neuropathy pain in both feet; and he suffered from angina. He had previously had 8 stents placed in his heart. Every day at work he would experience chest pain any time he did moderate physical exertion. I shared with him our belief that a whole-foods, plant-based diet offered the safest alternative lifestyle for a person with diabetes. He went home and gave it a try. Two weeks later he shared that his blood sugars were down to around 120, but was most excited to report that his angina had completely gone away. I do not believe that his cardiovascular disease had reversed in that time—it usually takes several months to accomplish that. But what happened was the diet he began following increased coronary blood flow to the place that he did not experience the same angina. A few months later, Stan reverted to eating what he had been accustomed to eating and it was not long before his angina returned.

Scientist have learned much about the risks and health benefits of certain diets. But, when considering the whole person with diabetes who needs to lose weight, I strongly caution against a diet that advocates eating high-protein or high fat. Instead, I steer an individual toward a diet pattern that utilizes 9 servings/day of green leafy vegetables and/or the colorful, non-starchy vegetables each day. These high-nutrient foods are anti-inflammatory, and are low calorie as well, resulting in weight loss, healing, and health. This kind of diet is what will be safest for someone with diabetes, who needs to lose weight.

For more information about weight loss, follow this link.

[i] For further information about the dangers of a high-protein, low carb diet, click on this link.

[ii] Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes, American Heart Association. Accessed 02/12/18. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/Diabetes/WhyDiabetesMatters/Cardiovascular-Disease-Diabetes_UCM_313865_Article.jsp/#.WoGtBmaZP-Y

[iii] Fleming, Richard M. (2000) The effect of high-protein diets on coronary blood flow. Angiology, 51(10):817-26

 

35 thoughts on “Does How You Lose Weight Matter?

  1. Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve visited your blog before but after going through a few of the articles I realized it’s new to me.
    Regardless, I’m definitely pleased I found it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back regularly!

  2. Hey there! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new
    iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all
    your posts! Keep up the great work!

  3. Hi, I do think this is a great web site. I stumbledupon it 😉 I’m going to come back once again since I saved as a favorite it.
    Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be
    rich and continue to guide others.

  4. You’re so awesome! I don’t believe I’ve truly read a single thing like that before.
    So wonderful to discover somebody with some genuine thoughts
    on this subject matter. Really.. thanks for
    starting this up. This web site is something that’s needed on the web, someone with a
    little originality!

  5. Can I simply just say what a comfort to find someone that actually understands what they are discussing on the web.

    You definitely understand how to bring a problem to light and make it important.
    More people need to read this and understand this side of the story.
    It’s surprising you’re not more popular given that you definitely have the gift.

  6. This is very interesting, You are a very skilled blogger.
    I have joined your feed and look forward to seeking more of your great post.

    Also, I have shared your website in my social networks!

  7. We stumbled over here by a different web address and thought
    I may as well check things out. I like what I see so i am just following you.
    Look forward to checking out your web page repeatedly.

  8. A person necessarily assist to make significantly articles I might state.

    That is the first time I frequented your web page and so far?

    I amazed with the analysis you made to create this actual submit incredible.
    Fantastic activity!

  9. I’m amazed, I have to admit. Rarely do I encounter a blog that’s both equally educative and engaging, and let me tell you, you’ve
    hit the nail on the head. The issue is something that not
    enough men and women are speaking intelligently about.
    I am very happy I stumbled across this in my hunt for something regarding this.

  10. Hi there, You’ve done an excellent job. I’ll definitely digg it
    and personally suggest to my friends. I’m confident they’ll be benefited from this site.

  11. Hello there! This post couldn’t be written any better!

    Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He
    always kept talking about this. I will forward this page to him.
    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

  12. My partner and I stumbled over here by a different page
    and thought I should check things out. I like what I see so now i am
    following you. Look forward to checking out your web page for a second time.

  13. I’m not that much of a internet reader to be honest but
    your blogs really nice, keep it up! I’ll go ahead and
    bookmark your site to come back in the future. Many thanks

  14. I think this is among the most important information for me.
    And i am happy reading your article. However want to remark on some general issues, The web site taste is wonderful, the
    articles is really great : D. Good activity, cheers

  15. Having read this I thought it was extremely enlightening.
    I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this information together.
    I once again find myself spending a lot of time both reading and posting comments.
    But so what, it was still worthwhile!

  16. Valuable info. Lucky me I found your site unintentionally, and I’m surprised why this coincidence didn’t took place in advance!

    I bookmarked it.

  17. Hey! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He always kept talking about this.
    I will forward this article to him. Pretty sure he will have a good read.
    Many thanks for sharing!

  18. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your website provided us with valuable information to work on. You’ve done an impressive job and our entire community will be thankful to you.

Comments are closed.