Michael Eades' new weightloss paradigm

(Doug) #48

Totally agreed; we are really talking about theoretical things. If there is a physical, mechanistic explanation why mass balance is substantially different than energy balance, I’d like to see it.

“Calories out” - yeah, usually hard to know, determining TDEE, etc. And “mass expenditure per day” gets brutally skewed by the degree of water retention, electrolyte balance, etc.

If we are talking about “weight” then obviously ‘mass’ is a more direct view than is ‘energy.’ We can be weighed any number of times with incredible accuracy. But this is no necessary portrayal of the in/out of the macronutrients we eat by mass; it fails because of water. Most of us gain or lose very little mass from day-to-day, as far as the macronutrients. But change in water weight is a frequent thing, varying person-to-person and often in relation to levels of electrolytes and hormones. Change in water weight can be many multiples of changes in our macronutrient levels, tens, hundreds of times as much.

So, to even things out we have to look at long-term results, and keeping things constant for that long is not going to happen. IMO - we really are restricted to theory, here.

(Doug) #50

I don’t think ‘multiple’ really fits, unless you mean some fractional thing. Now, was Feltham’s ‘out’ for the keto diet higher? I’m sure it was - the same old insulin thing we all know so well. This is the action of insulin, not anything to do with mass versus energy, per se. On the high-carb diet, he had more going into storage (no question about it). But nothing changes if we say “so many grams went into storage” or “this much energy went into storage.”

Indeed. :slightly_smiling_face: I’ve thought about doing it myself - yikes… not sure I could and I sure don’t want to.

But I don’t think you’d be anywhere near 150-175 grams per day of weight gain. The difference for Feltham between the low-carb and the low-fat diets was gaining 276 more grams per day on the low-fat. He’s younger, yes, and he was eating more - much closer to three times your intake rather than twice as much. I’d be surprised if you were at 80 grams per day. And of course it’s just speculation.

It doesn’t need refuting. Sure, we can say that “the mass causes the weight gain.” (:smile:) But we can also say that “the body storing energy as fat causes the weight gain.” Both are correct. There remains no meaningful difference between the two views. And when the body removes fat from storage for metabolizing, it’s not because it’s thinking, “Hey, why not carve off a few grams here…” It’s because it’s thinking, "I need a little more energy."

No, not just in my opinion. :wink:

Think about it - let’s say ‘average absorbed carbohydrate mass’ was 50 grams above ‘average oxidized carbohydrate mass.’

And ‘average absorbed protein mass’ was 50 grams below 'average oxidized protein mass."

We’re going to end up in the same place. Thus, the article’s claim that they all have to be equal at the same time to achieve energy balance and mass stability is false.

(Doug) #51

That doesn’t do it, Michael. As pointed out in other links you’ve posted, at the most it makes for an inconsequential difference, in theory, over long periods of time, a difference which is substantially less than the margins of error for things like DEXA scans.

(Bob M) #52

Although I’ve always loved Gary Taubes’s idea that if you “overeat” by small amounts per day, you gain a lot of weight over time.

I was going to Reddit keto for a while, until I realized too many of them thought you could actually calculate a lot of this. Saw one post where someone said what the original poster said was true was not, because his calculations showed, based on height and weight and calorie intake, and 3,500 calories= 1 pound, that the weight loss should have been higher. Therefore, the original poster did not calculate calorie intake correctly.

The hubris.

Of course, being the ahole I can be, I would ask people to show me the study or studies that prove that if you restrict calories by 3,500, that results in 1 pound of fat loss.

Or I’d point out a study where people who restrict their calories have a lower basal metabolic rate.

Or a study showing that increasing exercise does not result in increasing weight loss.

Or many other studies showing that these types of calculations can’t be performed, particularly when all you’re going by is height, weight, “calories”, and weight lost.

Alas, it fell on deaf ears.

(Doug) #53

I think that complexity is definitely here - but in the way we view things and all the attendant considerations, rather than at the real physical, mechanistic level. In our Newtonian world here on the earth’s surface, weight and mass are essentially the same thing for us (certainly when we talk about body weight). So to say, “weight depends on mass” - well yeah, yeah… :slightly_smiling_face:

Every subatomic particle we ingest has mass, and they all go somewhere. There will be a balance, one way or another, for all that mass. No question about it. But the same is true for energy; that’s just the way the universe works. In both cases, the math will work out.

The laws of Nature are written in the language of mathematics. --Galileo Galilei.

On a human level, I’m not sure about it being easier to eat higher mass with high carbs. I once ate a 6 lb steak. That would be like eating 1000 crackers. Carbs often come with a lot of air and/or water included, so is it really easier to eat high masses of carbs? If we include the effects of insulin, i.e. eat a bunch of carbs, get hungry soon afterwards, eat a bunch more, then yes - but again this is due to insulin, not due to the masses of the macronutrients.

Similarly, if it is true that fat and protein are more satisfying than carbs, resulting in less ghrelin (the hunger hormone), that could lead to eating less mass of fat and protein, but here too this isn’t dependent on their masses, this is a hormonal thing. What if things were reversed - that fat was the least satisfying thing. Would that mean that the “mass balance” thing was then wrong? I don’t think so, because it really is not the masses of the macronutrients that matter to us, it is their effect on our bodies and what we do with them.

I would say that the effects of insulin have to be in their mathematics. Otherwise they won’t work. They may not ascribe things to insulin’s action, but in the real world we know that insulin response makes a difference, often a very big difference, no?

The “debate” between the carbohydrate-insulin model and other theories always are incomplete. For one thing, it is not just a question of intake and outflow, because there is storage. Whether we look at the overall mass balance or energy balance, the CIM is in there - to whatever degree it is operating for a given person, it will be reflected in the physical reality of the situation - so much coming in, so much going out, so much being stored or removed from storage. These are physical quantities, ‘physical’ in the sense of physics, including charge and energy as well as mass.

Arguments against the CIM - I’ve never seen a good one. Not saying the CIM is the end-all, for all people. But that insulin levels can and do make a very significant difference is well-documented (unquestionable, IMO), and that the body’s response to the different macronutrients with respect to insulin varies widely and meaningfully.

True - there are lots of things that would be good to have rigidly, completely studied.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #54

Doug, I was under the impression that metabolising glucose and metabolising a fatty acid have about the same energy cost per gram. If I remember this right, fat may cost a bit more to metabolise, but not that much more.

And in any case, and again, if I remember it right, the energy cost per unit of ATP works out pretty much the same for both substrates, because 1 g of fat yields somewhat more ATP than 1 g of glucose does.

The main difference in the two substrates, from the body’s perspective, is that glucose metabolism produces advanced glycation end-products and other oxidative damage, and fatty-acid metabolism does not. On the other hand, glucose metabolism is faster and can be performed anywhere in a cell, whereas fatty-acid metabolism must be performed by the mitochondria and is a somewhat slower process.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #55

The gain was muscle, according to the DEXA scan. He also lost some fat, though I don’t know how or from where, because he was already thin at the start of the experiment.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #56

Did you watch Dr. Eades’s video, and check out the Meerman paper? (I haven’t had time to read the paper, myself.) If so, it would be interesting to hear your thoughts.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #57

Not possible, because there are studies that have shown the opposite, that fat loss does not correspond to the restriction of the corresponding amount of calories. Also, Zoë Harcombe tracked down the 1 lb. = 3500 kcals hypothesis to an American nutritionist, who appears to have made it up, or at least, she never said how she derived that figure.

Taubes’s point, by the way, is that if that figure is correct, a one-pound gain in a year corresponds to eating about one mouthful of food extra per day, and how do we know which mouthful was the last one before the extra one that causes the problem?

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #58

I’m not sure what your point is, here. Who can’t eat a thousand crackers? I regularly consumed a third to a half of a pound of pasta at one meal, bringing my stomach literally to the bursting point, and was still hungry for more. A thousand crackers is what? Four boxes? Pfft!

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #59

And also, the lowered insulin from not eating carbohydrate stops preventing the leptin secreted by the adipose tissue from registering in the ventromedial hypothalamus. The leptin signal is what causes the brain to halt the secretion of ghrelin.

(Doug) #60

Could be, Paul. I was talking about eating carbs and fats. Carbs have a cost of digestion of 10 - 15%, while for fats it’s 0 - 5%.

No, and I should. I will. I’ve been busy building a live-in metabolic chamber.


Just kidding. Raising the floor in one room of the house, and it’s a real *******. What am I doing on the forum? :smile:

That volume is important, i.e. when our stomach is physically full, that is a meaningful thing. The bulk that often accompanies carbs via fiber, water, air, etc., is going to make some of them hard to eat in the same mass quantities as fat.

:smile: Dude, try it sometime. Well okay, don’t, but that’s a serious amount of volume.

Okay, to my point - try eating 6 lbs of pasta then. :wink: We are talking about mass, after all.

Depends on the cracker, o’course, but for the common saltine type it’s over 6 boxes (4 sleeves of 40 crackers each per box). [And get ready for some serious water weight gain. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:)

Ever do the 'saltine challenge"? Put 4 crackers in your mouth, and see if you can get it all swallowed in one minute, without drinking anything to help. It’s tough because it’s all dry powder in the beginning and it takes a while to secrete enough saliva.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #61

Resting. Yeah, that’s it—resting! :grin:

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #62

That much? Really? Oy vey! Well, six boxes is a bit too much, even for me. Though there was a time when I’d have welcomed the challenge. :grin:

(Doug) #63

A big caudron of soup, 1000 crackers…

(Doug) #65

You can’t have an accurate take on the balance of things without considering storage. This is true for both mass and energy. CIM is part of CICO, and weight loss on a ketogenic diet is due to CICO - if we are losing fat it’s because the body is taking it out of storage, to get more energy.

Indeed. I will.

(Doug) #67

That’s not it. CICO is what occurs (same as mass changes), and CIM addresses how that happens. More fat storage under high insulin conditions means less on the ‘out’ side. CIM doesn’t make much difference for some people, while for others it obviously does. CICO is there all along.

(Doug) #68

@PaulL @MattWisti, Paul and Michael - I watched the video.

Keyes, ‘metabolic advantage’ of low carb, metabolic chamber, Kevin Hall, CICO model - does include storage :+1: - same for CIM. All good so far.

The example of the water cooling without weight change is silly - the human body expends energy/mass to maintain a fairly constant temperature.

Meerman video - definitely, as I’ve said, each subatomic particle has mass.

Mass balance equation: change in weight (mass) = ‘mass in’ minus ‘mass out.’ Well of course, nothing new there.

The Einstein stuff is silly. Human bodies don’t mess with atomic nucleii.

Water content of foods - really doesn’t matter here.

Eades notes that fats are more energy dense than carbs. - No question about it, but he neglects what happens on the ‘out’ side. If we’re burning fat for a given amount of energy, we burn much less (in mass) than if we’re burning carbs. The energy density thing does apply on intake, but it also applies for metabolism and the ‘out’ side.

Bikman’s part - no debate, IMO, but nothing is changed.

48 minutes - guy asks about the higher oxygen content of carbs vs. fats (fat oxidation is not as efficient). Eades says “when you take food in, you extract the energy from the food… Make CO2 and H2O…” Certainly, and the higher energy density of fats on intake applies, but Eades again neglects that the lower energy density of carbs means that a greater mass will be lost from metabolizing carbs vs. fats.

52:50 Guy questions how “mass balance is useful for people.” - It isn’t, really. That weight change is ‘mass in’ minus ‘mass out’ is a given, and always has been. Nothing new here, and there isn’t even a meaningful theoretical difference vs. energy balance.

54:10 Westman: “Calories don’t weigh anything.” - So what? The body does expend mass (going out as CO2 and H2O) for energy, however. It does not matter that ‘calories don’t weigh anything,’ and it’s not like “massy calories” would be required for the energy balance.

That water can maintain mass while changing energy state doesn’t matter, either, as before. That is a body giving up heat to the environnment. The same often happens to a dead human body. Living humans, on the other hand, give up mass to maintain energy state.

So, at the end I don’t see anything of significance here. Of course mass change for a body is “mass in minus mass out;” changes nothing. The way Eades presents things, and the way the article he refers to is written, it might sound plausibly meaningful, because of the higher energy density of fats. But that vanishes when one realizes that it works in reverse on the ‘out’ side - the lower energy density of carbs means that a greater mass of them will be used, versus fats.

(Doug) #70

From the title of the article: “Chronic positive mass balance is the actual etiology of obesity”

It’s the final manifestation of obesity, i.e. of course “more mass” than what we deem non-obese will cause it. But the actual etiology includes energy. The living body is always doing the mass to energy conversion. Eades notes this. The author of the article notes this: from section 21 - “every time his body oxidizes 1 g of glucose while running, the heat released by his body continues to be ∼4 kcals, which will not change as he ages or as a function of his genome, epigenome, or proteome.”

Indeed - that energy is a constant, as is the mass of “one gram,” for example, and as are the chemical composition of glucose, the mass leaving the body as water and carbon dioxide, and even the mass and potential energy of the ATP in our cells. These things are fixed.

That same runner, if burning fat rather than glucose for the 4 kcals, would only be oxidizing ~44% of a gram, versus the 1 gram of glucose. That is less mass leaving the body, burning fats, versus burning carbohydrates.

Sure, but so what? If something is heating up or cooling down, the energy balance is changing without mass change. If a living organism would be always either heating or cooling, then “a persistent energy imbalance” would be there. That does not mean that there is no overall energy balance. As the temperature cycles up and down, any measurement of short enough duration will show an imbalance. Measurements over longer time frames will show a decreasing imbalance, tending toward zero. Over enough time, there is no meaningful difference between mass balance and energy balance for the human body.

“Does not require” a mass change. No. But that does not rule out energy balance.

Here too - well of course, because things can heat up or cool down, or otherwise change energy state without changing mass. But that does not mean that an overall energy balance is not present. In the living human body, temperatures tend to remain very constant, and the mass to energy conversion is always occurring.

Well of course, by definition. But again - that does not rule out the energy balance.

ACCscience Publishing is a pay-to-publish organization. You give them some money, they will print what you write. Peer-review would note the incomplete logic, the generalizing from the particular, and flat-out falsehoods like the claimed “energy balance can occur at body mass stability only if the following three conditions are simultaneously satisfied…”

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #71

That depends on what you mean. A true mass-to-energy conversion would allow a few molecules’ worth of energy to supply us for a lifetime. The energy liberated by living things is chemical energy from breaking and making chemical bonds—much, much less in comparison. It’s not really the same as changing mass into energy, even though we talk that way.

It is also important to remember that we became fixated on the caloric value of food 150 years ago, when the bomb calorimeter was our only measuring tool, and the heat released from combusting food was all we could measure. I don’t believe that the assumption that the combustion energy of food represents the energy value of that food to the body was ever actually articulated, much less justified.

In any case, the body does not combust food, it uses catalytic reactions to generate a chemical from our foods that in turn is used to create energy from moving around positive and negative ions. Why the energy released in these catalytic reactions should equal the energy release from burning food has never been explained, so far as I know. Catalytic reactions operate differently from simple combustion, and the energy released isn’t necessarily equal to the combustion energy, even though the end-products might be the same. It could be equal, but that needs to be proved, it can’t simply be assumed. Personally, I think it’s time we sought a new paradigm of what the body does with food.

Moreover, and for what it’s worth, insisting on the validity of the Laws of Thermodynamics is not useful. The reason is that the processes of living cells often create more order than was there before, in what certainly looks like a reversal of entropy. (In fact, this has been used as the very definition of what life is.) Of course, it goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway) that the overall entropy of the universe always increases, “universe” here being defined as “living creature + environment,” but considering strictly just the living thing on its own, as a closed system, it appears that the Laws of Thermodynamics are being violated by life.

So let’s try to set aside our assumptions and preconceptions and try to approach the problem with fresh eyes. The caloric-energy model and its justifications are probably too deeply ingrained for us to be able to do that, but it might be an interesting exercise to try to set it aside.