Thursday, January 28, 2016

A magic molecule of weight loss? This is a well done study, but I still have two issues with it.



Magic molecules? Of course not. 

Although .... in THIS STUDY the guys at the Harvard School of Public Health assessed the dietary patterns of over 124,000 men and women for up to 24 years. 

They wanted to know A) what they were eating, and B) if those who were better able to control their weight tended to eat certain things more than others.

What they found?  
People who ate more antioxidant flavonoids were more likely to maintain their weight over the long haul. 

Figure1After controlling for every lifestyle variable on planet Earth, this class of molecule was most associated with keeping your weight in check. Magic!!

The image on the left is from the paper. Check out the top of the chart, which shows how much of the magic flavonoid molecules they were eating, and where they came from. 

Two Points 
First of all, there are no magic molecules, and this study is only a correlation. So it doesn't prove anything. That said, it is strongly suggestive, especially given the quality of the study and the huge number of people (greater than 124k).

Moreover, it's not hard to imagine that the foods eaten can contribute to weight control. If you review them, they're basically a list of all the usual suspects: fruits, veg, tea, red wine. Heck, even beer is included.

But secondly, where's my dark chocolate? Or even just cocoa? Did they not count it? Why are they excluding the food with the highest concentration of antioxidant flavonoids of them all??

Check this chart: 

Food         Catechin flavonoids (mg/100g) ... Epicatechin flavonoids (mg/100g)
Dark Chocolate      12.0 ... 41.5

Red Table Wine      7.0 ...  3.3
Brewed Black Tea   1.5 ...  2.1
Apples                     0.9 ...  6.1

Why the exclusion?
I'm not sure why they did not allow dark chocolate and cocoa into their little club of healthy flavonoid foods. It may be that the idea that these two can be associated with weight loss is just too much to accept right now. 

In any case, until this all gets cleared up (in the year 2094), I think it's a safe bet that consuming food high in flavonoid antioxidants is going to be great for you, and may even help you control your weight!! Oh, and the wine/chocolate don't hurt either. 

Reference: 
Dietary flavonoid intake and weight maintenance: three prospective cohorts of 124 086 US men and women followed for up to 24 years

For more information: Click here to visit Will Clower's website.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Which Exercise to Choose?

It's about love. Find the thing that pulls you forward, and lights you up. 

That's your exercise. 


For more information: Click here to visit Will Clower's website.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Check out my article in TIME


This is a response to the recent release of this year's Dietary Guidelines for all Americans. 


There seems to be a nutritional Price Is Right Wheel that gets spun every 5 years, after which we find out what the new dietary coaching is. This is problematic in itself, but adding to this confusion are the groups with agendas, who lobby Congress to get the nutritional advice modified, or those who sue the government to have them remove language that doesn't agree with their philosophy. 

Check out this article, and let me know your thoughts.


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