sábado, 2 de fevereiro de 2013

It is valid to question the professional consensus about weight loss?, by Danilo Balu

This post was written by Danilo Balu, who has two degrees: one in Sports and the other in Nutrition, both from one of the best (if not the best) Brazilian Universities. It is making a huge success (more than 40 comments) in a famous running site: Webrun. Some of the comments are even offending Balu.

I have translated the post so that people from other countries could read.
Unfortunately, I am not a professional translator.
The original post can be found in

It is valid to question the professional consensus about weight loss?
Danilo Balu
Or why, when it comes to weight loss, I do not believe in Nutritionists or Doctors.

Rigorous carbohydrate restriction is the solution
Photo: Pixaio/ Stock.Xchng

At the annual reunion of my Bachelor of Sport class (EEFE-São Paulo University), I had two pleasant surprises. I saw that one of my best friends was thinner than ever.

He lost 16kg after reading the book by Gary Taubes (Why we get fat) I recommended. Another colleague told me at the same event that he lost 8kg in a month doing the same thing! The most interesting fact: they are two of the best sport trainers in the country in their respective modalities and they did not increase their training. Nothing.

Controversies- I have some care and rigor when I say some things in this space. I have a certain obsession with scientific methodology. Therefore I don't go out there recommending stretching before running or slowdown after running. I do not do either of them because the first proved useless or counterproductive while the second has no support in science.

Carbohydrates - For almost two years, I have been advocating for another cause: the rigorous restriction of carbohydrates and refined foods of our diet. Everything I wrote before, I just do not recognize.

After studying this issue, I came to a conclusion: everything, absolutely everything that I was taught in college (in the Sports and Nutrition undergraduate courses at the University of São Paulo) is simply shoddy and poorly done empiricism. As Taubes does not call any Nutrition professional a Scientist, I can not see the "conventional" Nutrition as a Science. It is at best divination, faith healing, a flirtation with deception.

Old recipe- Nutrition and Medicine have been fighting obesity for decades. But obesity keeps increasing worldwide. The solution proposed by Nutrition and Medicine that seems convincing: to get thin we need to consume fewer calories than we spend.

The problem is that this argument lacks any support. To make matters worse, there is plenty of evidence that indicates that weight is related to a hormonal dysfunction and other examples showing that calorie deficit does not produce weight loss.

And what doctors and nutritionists do? Even applying the same "remedy" for decades and the obesity problem only getting worse, professionals give even more support to a solution that was never proven effective. I make a call: ask any professional what is his recommendation for diabetics, hypertensive and obese people.

Or, more simply, search web portals with nutritional recommendations. In all of those sites, the "tip" is to consume less fat. This is the obsession with cutting fat!

New approaches - In the eyes of the layman, the nutritional advice for anyone who wants to lose weight has become the practice of common sense. Medical doctors and nutritionists are giving recommendations that have no support other than theory or supposition.

Worst still, many scientific studies have disproven hypothesis accepted as the truth. These "widely accepted truths" are contradictory to that which has been proven: the drastic reduction in the consumption of carbohydrates is an effective way to reduce weight.

My recommendation for now is: be receptive to new theories because it is very possible that the professional that you chose to advice you does not have the slightest idea of what they talking about.

PS: Thanks for the guys at The Health Fanatic for correcting some of the mistakes in the translation.

Um comentário:

  1. the drastic reduction in the consumption of carbohydrates is an effective way to reduce weight. low carb diet