Thursday, October 07, 2004
As hoards of low-carb proponents invade the nutritional landscape, the increasingly tired low-fat guard seems to be giving way before their steady march and drumbeat.
This invasion is a preemptive strike to find and remove the stockpiled food molecules that could be used to attack your health and explode your weight. Low-carb campaign hawks insist they are out there, ready to be launched against us at any moment. We know where they are – stockpiled in bread, rice, and potatoes.
International food observers are investigating the suspicious links between the axis-of-evil molecules and the thin, healthy people of the world. The French, for example, have flagrantly thumbed their noses at U.S. efforts once again by eating white bread baguettes twice per day, every day. Even worse, they steadfastly deny any relationship between daily carbs and weight or health problems. The Communist Chinese, ever a nettle for Western efforts, eat their high-carb rice every day, in blatant disregard of U.S. dietary resolutions.
Opinion at home is far from unanimous, as shown by our own scientists in a recent Tufts University study directly comparing the effectiveness of low - carb, low - fat, Weight Watchers, and Zone approaches. The question was simple. If done correctly, which theory actually works the best to lower weight?
The result? Micromanaging carbs was no more effective than counting up points or fats or anything else. Thus, the investigators came up empty handed – the carb content of the food was irrelevant to weight loss.
Without definitive proof that carbs present a threat, and with recent evidence showing their irrelevance to weight loss itself, carbs have become the dietary “weapons of mass distraction". The resulting campaign to win the hearts and minds of the people, by stoking fears of these molecules, distracts us from the real culprit -- domestic Biggie Sized habits of personal overconsumption.
Dietary WMD not only divert us from more pressing problems at home, but pre-emptive invasions of this region of the nutritional world will lead to a quagmire of weight and health problems. Already the neo-Atkins’ intelligencia have rolled back fruit and vegetable consumption because of carb levels that – we now find out – were never a problem to begin with.
It becomes clearer by the day that this nutritional war was founded upon dubious premises with no plan to win the long-term weight management peace. Will we have the courage to admit our past misunderestimates? Or will we "stay the course"? Only time, and our waistlines, will tell.