Nutrition, Food and Diets

Browse these excerpts from our Nutrition, Food and Diet articles:

Lifestyle Diets

We look at lifestyle diets, diets directed at transforming eating patterns over the long term, rather than fast short-term weight loss. The lifestyle diets we summarize include:

The diets we review all have certain benefits—some more than others—but each of them has been around for awhile, and so some of the successes and problems associated with each of them are well known. They are all still popular to some degree. If there are clinical controlled studies conducted over time, we will describe some of them so you can get a good idea of whether or not they will work for you in ways that might last. Not all diets have been carefully studied in an unbiased way though. Some diets that claim to be well supported by research either rely on anecdotal information or include a heavy dose of self-interest, or even an apparent conflict of interest on the part of the researchers. We avoid citing those studies that are not controlled, or were conducted by people who have a financial/professional interest in promoting them.
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The Culture of Eating

When we eat, much more than food goes into our mouth–culture, religion, ethics, politics, social class, tradition, family history–they all go in too.

Humans are omnivores: we can consume many different kinds of life forms in order to perpetuate our own lives, for such is nature. Or as humorist Woody Allen once said:

Nature is…big fish eating little fish, and plants eating plants, and animals eating…It’s like an enormous restaurant… [2]

Fortunately, we can eat almost anything from the menu of life’s big restaurant and use it to survive. But that is also what writer Michael Pollan refers to as “The Omnivore’s Dilemma”[3]. What would be best to choose? Since people feel very strongly about what they (and others) order from the menu, there is a great deal of room for uninformed opinion to masquerade as some kind of “fact” about food. Read More

Intermittent Fasting

Fasting in one form or another has been around for as long as humans, sometimes as a consequence of having limited access to food, and sometimes due to religious or spiritual beliefs. It is easy to see that we evolved to be able to function without food for extended periods of time, and it is not hard to argue that fasting may in fact be more “natural” than eating three meals a day on a schedule.

Until very recently in human history, sporadic or seasonal access to food was the norm. This fits in nicely with the fact that our livers and muscles store carbohydrates in the form of glycogen for quick access and we can also sustain ourselves for weeks at a time by drawing from our long term reserves – fat.
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Restoration & Prevention Diets

Restoration & Prevention Diets are intended to reduce symptoms that are not necessarily associated with being overweight. While they could be helpful for many people who struggle with weight, their primary goal is to alleviate or even avoid a specific health problem. People for whom extra weight is not a challenge might need to make changes in order just to maintain weight, control high blood pressure or chronic pain, or avoid difficulties with food digestion. Given the prevalence of neurodegenerative illnesses like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s in our aging population, a proactive approach might involve adopting the MIND diet.

We review the following Restoration & Prevention Diets:

  • MIND
  • DASH
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Reversing Type-2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is generally categorized as a progressive, chronic lifelong condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar. Even though this is true for Type 1 diabetes, is it true for type 2 diabetes?

It is quite apparent that the answer is no. The research shows that type 2 diabetes is not a chronic and progressive disease and can in most cases be prevented as well as reversed/cured with lifestyle changes alone, with little or no medication, and in particular, with the addition of two powerful aides: intermittent fasting and high intensity interval training (HIIT).

We review some of the latest scientific research on type 2 diabetes and the benefits of intermittent fasting here: Reversing Type-2 Diabetes

In addition, we explain high intensity interval training (HIIT) and its significance to type 2 diabetes here: Best Exercise for Type-2 Diabetes