Category Archives: Food

Food for thought: Ketogenic diets reduce athletes’ anaerobic performance


Food for thought: Ketogenic diets reduce athletes' anaerobic performance
Researcher Edward Weiss, Ph.D., is an avid bicycler. Credit: Saint Louis University

Athletes who turn to ketogenic diets to help their performance in high-intensity, short-duration sports may want to think again, according to new research from Saint Louis University.

In a small study, Edward Weiss, Ph.D., associate professor of nutrition and dietetics at Saint Louis University, together with SLU graduate students Kym Wroble, R.D. and Morgan Trott, R.D., examined the exercise  of 16 men and women after following either a  or a high-carbohydrate  for four days. His team then tested the anaerobic exercise performance of the participants.

The research team found that after following the ketogenic diet, the participants did not perform as well at the exercise tasks.

“In popular discussions, the term ‘ketogenic diet’ often is used as a broader term for , including Atkins,” Weiss said. “However, the language is often confused. People often think of low carb and high protein. This is related, but different, as protein can only be at normal levels for a true ketogenic diet.

“The objective of a ketogenic diet is to starve the body of carbohydrates. If there is too much protein in the diet, the body will use the protein to make carbohydrates, which defeats the purpose. When the body is sufficiently deprived of carbohydrates, it manufactures ketone bodies as an alternate fuel. It’s an emergency backup system that allows us to survive when we are at risk of starvation. But, it has side effects.

“Right now in the general public, it’s touted for . Some studies have shown that it is effective for weight loss. I worry, though, that this may be a lot of smoke and mirrors. A typical diet is 60 percent carbohydrate. So, if you limit carbs, you might find yourself just not eating that much. If you eliminate most food options, you may just be losing weight because you are cutting calories.”

The study has implications both for those who turn to ketogenic diets for weight loss and for athletes who aim to improve their performance.

“The energy metabolism system that’s affected is anaerobic. Watching the summer Olympics, the 100-meter sprint and the triple jump depend on this system. You might say that this doesn’t relate to me. But for someone with low fitness, they use this same metabolism to get up the stairs. Every day people use this kind of metabolism without realizing it. This study shows that this energy system is compromised by this type of diet.”

Weiss has one caveat.

“There are populations that a  may benefit,” Weiss said. “For example, patients who have epilepsy benefit from this diet. For those with abnormal cell metabolism that causes seizures, causing cells to feed on ketones instead can be helpful.”

The bottom line?

“Short-term low carbohydrate, ketogenic diets reduce  in activities that are heavily dependent on anaerobic energy systems,” Weiss reports. “These findings have clear performance implications for athletes, especially for high-intensity, short-duration activities, and sports.

“This diet is especially hot among people who are trying to optimize their health. What this study tells me is that unless there are compelling reasons for following a low-carb diet, athletes should be advised to avoid these diets.”


More information: Low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet impairs anaerobic exercise performance in exercise-trained women and men: a randomized-sequence crossover trial, DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.18.08318-4

 

 

Ketogenic diets alter gut microbiome in humans, mice


keto diet
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Low-carb, high-fat ketogenic diets, which have attracted public interest in recent years for their proposed benefits in lowering inflammation and promoting weight loss and heart health, have a dramatic impact on the microbes residing in the human gut, collectively referred to as the microbiome, according to a new UC San Francisco study of a small cohort of volunteer subjects. Additional research in mice showed that so-called “ketone bodies,” a molecular byproduct that gives the ketogenic diet its name, directly impact the gut microbiome in ways that may ultimately suppress inflammation, suggesting evidence for potential benefits of ketone bodies as a therapy for autoimmune disorders affecting the gut.

In ketogenic diets, carbohydrate consumption is dramatically reduced in order to force the  to alter its metabolism to using fat molecules, rather than carbohydrates, as its primary energy source—producing ketone bodies as a byproduct—a shift that proponents claim has numerous health benefits.

“I got interested in this question because our prior research showed that  induce shifts in the  that promote metabolic and other diseases in mice, yet ketogenic diets, which are even higher in fat content, have been proposed as a way to prevent or even treat disease,” said Peter Turnbaugh, Ph.D., a UCSF associate professor of microbiology and immunology, member of the UCSF Benioff Center for Microbiome Medicine and a Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator. “We decided to explore that puzzling dichotomy.”

In their new study, published May 20, 2020, in Cell, Turnbaugh and colleagues partnered with the nonprofit Nutrition Science Initiative to recruit 17 adult overweight or obese nondiabetic men to spend two months as inpatients in a metabolic ward where their diets and exercise levels were carefully monitored and controlled.

For the first four weeks of the study, the participants were given either a “standard” diet consisting of 50 percent carbs, 15 percent protein, and 35 percent fat or a ketogenic diet comprising 5 percent carbs, 15 percent protein, and 80 percent fat. After four weeks, the two groups switched diets, to allow the researchers to study how shifting between the two diets altered participants’ microbiomes.

Analysis of microbial DNA found in participants’ stool samples showed that shifting between standard and ketogenic diets dramatically changed the proportions of common gut microbial phyla Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes in participants’ guts, including significant changes in 19 different bacterial genera. The researchers focused on a particular bacterial genus—the common probiotic Bifidobacteria—which showed the greatest decrease in the ketogenic diet.

To better understand how microbial shifts on the ketogenic diet might impact health, the researchers exposed the mouse gut to different components of microbiomes of humans adhering to ketogenic diets and showed that these altered microbial populations specifically reduce the numbers of Th17 —a type of T cell critical for fighting off infectious disease, but also known to promote inflammation in autoimmune diseases.

Follow-up diet experiments in mice, in which researchers gradually shifted animals’ diets between low-fat, high-fat and  ketogenic diets, confirmed that high-fat and ketogenic diets have opposite effects on the gut microbiome. These findings suggested that the microbiome responds differently as the level of fat in the animals’ diet increases to levels that promote ketone body production in the absence of carbs.

The researchers observed that that as animals’ diets were shifted from a standard diet towards stricter carbohydrate restriction, their microbes also began shifting, correlated with a gradual rise in ketone bodies.

“This was a little surprising to me,” Turnbaugh said. “As someone who is new to the keto field, I had assumed that producing ketone bodies was an all-or-nothing effect once you got to a low enough level of carb intake. But this suggests that you may get some of the effects of ketosis quite quickly.”

The researchers tested whether ketone bodies alone could drive the shifts they had seen in the gut’s microbial ecosystem by directly feeding ketone bodies to mice. They found that even in mice who were eating normal amounts of carbohydrates, the mere presence of added ketones was enough to produce many of the specific microbial changes seen in the ketogenic diet.

“This is a really fascinating finding because it suggests that the effects of ketogenic diets on the microbiome are not just about the diet itself, but how the  alters the body’s metabolism, which then has downstream effects on the ,” Turnbaugh said. “For many people, maintaining a strict low-carbohydrate or  is extremely challenging, but if future studies find that there are health benefits from the microbial shifts caused by  themselves, that could make for a much more palatable therapeutic approach.”


More information: Cell (2020). dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2020.04.027

Journal information: Cell

 

A WISE MOVE WHEN ORDERING OUT


2015102223335974677Want to cut calories by making more healthful meal choices? Try avoiding unhealthy impulse buying tough by ordering meals at least an hour before eating. New findings from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Carnegie Mellon University show that people choose higher-calorie meals when ordering immediately before eating, and lower-calorie meals when orders are placed an hour or more ahead of time. The results, which have significance for addressing the nation’s obesity epidemic, are published in the Journal of Marketing Research.

eric-van-epps-retreat.0.9.235.276.100.120.c
Eric M. VanEpps, Ph.D.

“Our results show that ordering meals when you’re already hungry and ready to eat leads to an overall increase in the number of calories ordered and suggest that by ordering meals in advance, the likelihood of making indulgent purchases is drastically reduced;” said lead author Eric M. VanEpps, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher at the Penn Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics, who conducted the studies while a graduate student at Carnegie Mellon. “The implication is that restaurants and other food providers can generate health benefits for their customers by offering the opportunity to place advance orders.”

Researchers conducted two field studies examining online lunch orders of 690 employees using an onsite corporate cafeteria, and a third study with 195 university students selecting among catered lunch options. Across all three studies, the researchers noted that meals with higher calorie content were ordered and consumed when there were shorter (or no) waiting periods between ordering and eating.

The first study was a secondary data analysis of over 1,000 orders that could be placed anytime after 7 a.m. to be picked up between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. The second study randomly assigned participants to place orders before 10 a.m. or after 11 a.m. The third study randomly assigned university students to order lunch before or after class, with lunches provided immediately after class.

In the first study, VanEpps and colleagues from Carnegie Mellon University found that for every hour of delay between when the order was placed and the food was ready (average delay of 105 minutes), there was a decrease of approximately 38 calories in the items ordered. In the second study, the researchers found that those who placed orders in advance, with an average delay of 168 minutes, had an average reduction of 30 calories (568 vs. 598) compared to those who ordered closer to lunchtime (with an average delay of 42 minutes between ordering and eating). The third study showed that students who placed orders in advance ordered significantly fewer calories (an average of 890 calories) compared to those who ordered at lunchtime (an average of 999 calories).

In all three studies, lower caloric totals were generally not confined to any specific population groups. Failure to eat breakfast did not emerge as a factor in the observed effect of time delay on total lunch calories, nor were there any observed differences in meal satisfaction between meals ordered in advance and those ordered for immediate consumption.

george-loewenstein-headshot.614.0.2221.2613.100.120.c
George Loewenstein, Ph.D.

“These findings provide one more piece of evidence that decisions made in the heat of the moment are not as far-sighted as those made in advance,” said George Loewenstein, Ph.D., the Herbert A. Simon University Professor of Economics and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon, and senior author on the study. “For example, people who plan to practice safe sex often fail to do so when caught up in the act, and people who, in dispassionate moments, recognize the stupidity of road rage nevertheless regularly succumb to it. Unfortunately, pre-commitment strategies are more feasible when it comes to diet than to many other hot behaviors.”

Based on findings from other studies, VanEpps says there is a potential concern that people who cut calories in one meal might “make up” for the calorie reductions later, whether at dinner or via snacking, though there is little evidence that participants in these studies were aware that lunches ordered in advance had fewer calories. The authors suggest future research in the form of longitudinal studies that measure eating decisions over a longer period would be useful in addressing this issue. In addition, because the two employee workplace studies provided discounted food and the university-based study provided free food, future research examining analogous situations where participants pay full price for their meals would be beneficial.

Funding for the study was provided by Lowenstein’s personal research funds.

Penn Medicine is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation’s first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $5.3 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top five medical schools in the United States for the past 18 years, according to U.S. News & World Report‘s survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistent among the nation’s top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $373 million awarded in the 2015 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System’s patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center — which are recognized as one of the nation’s top “Honor Roll” hospitals by U.S. News & World Report — Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital — the nation’s first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Chestnut Hill Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In the fiscal year 2015, Penn Medicine provided $253.3 million to benefit our community.

Delach, K. (2016, July 19). Want to Cut Calories? New Studies Suggest Placing Orders Before It’s Time to Eat. Retrieved July 26, 2016, from Penn Medicine: http://www.uphs.upenn.edu/news/News_Releases/2016/07/vanepps/

Citations

Journal of Marketing Research

 

Captain Hank Quinlan, Owner and Publisher, Chief Curmudgeon
Captain Hank Quinlan, Owner, and Publisher, Chief Curmudgeon with Sam Borsalino, Assistant Publisher

Dear Hail-Fellows well met, “The Fat Bastard Gazette” is written and edited by your favorite curmudgeons Captain Hank Quinlan and

Flatfoot Willie, Corespondent at Large with fellow Staff Writers
Flatfoot Willie, Correspondent at Large with fellow Staff Writers

Staff (monkeys in the back room). We offer an ongoing tirade to support or offend anyone of any large dimension, cultural background, religious affiliation, or color of skin. This gazette rails against an eclectic mix of circus ring ne’er do wells, big ring fatty and fatso whiners, congenital idiots, the usual motley assortment of the profoundly dumbfounded, and a favorite of intelligent men everywhere, the

May the Most Venerable H. L. Mencken bless our unworthy but earnest attempts at tongue in cheek jocularity .
May the Most Venerable H. L. Mencken bless our unworthy but earnest attempts at tongue in cheek jocularity.

“Great Booboisie.” Nor shall we ignore the wide assortment of shirkers, layabouts, and slugabeds.

Latest office staff confab at Fat Bastard HQ.
Latest office staff confab at Fat Bastard HQ.

All this and more always keeping our major focus on “Why so fat?”  Enough said? We at “The Fat Bastard Gazette” think so. If you like what you read, and you know whom you are, in this yellow blog, tell your friends. We would be elated with an ever-wider readership. We remain cordially yours, Captain Hank Quinlan and the Monkeys in the back room

“The Fat Bastard Gazette” does not purport to offer any definitive medical or pharmaceutical advice whatsoever in any explicit or implied manner. Always consult a qualified physician in all medical or pharmaceutical matters. “The Fat Bastard Gazette” is only the opinion of informed nonprofessionals for the general edification and entertainment of the greater public. 

 No similarities to any existing names or characters are expressed or implied. We reserve the right to offend or support anybody, anything, or any sacred totem across the globe.

THINK TWICE WHEN THROWING FOOD AWAY!


BK9BDX UK. Food waste in indoor food waste bin with lid open indoors
A shameful waste of good food

Did you know that we Americans throw away about 80,000,000,000 (80 billion) pounds of food a year and that only half of us are aware that food waste is a problem? What’s more, investigators have found that most people perceive benefits to throwing food away, some benefits of which have a very limited basis in fact.

 

A study recently published in PLOS One is just the second peer-reviewed large scale consumer survey about food waste and is the first in the U.S. to identify patterns regarding how Americans form attitudes on food waste.

 

Brian Roe
Brian Roe

The findings provide the data required to advance targeted efforts to reduce greatly the amount of food that U.S. consumers throw into the refuse each year, according to this study coauthored by Brian Roe, the McCormick professor of agricultural Marketing and Policy at The Ohio State University.

 

The researchers developed a national survey to identify Americans’ awareness and attitudes regarding food waste. In July 2015, it was administered to 500 people representative of the U.S. population.

 

The study found that 53 percent of respondents said they were aware that food waste is a problem. This is about 10 percent higher than a Johns Hopkins study published last year, Roe said, which indicates awareness of the problem could be growing.

 

“But it’s still amazingly low,” he said. “If we can increase awareness of the problem, consumers are more likely to increase purposeful action to reduce food waste. You don’t change your behavior if you don’t realize there’s a problem in the first place.”

 

Among other findings, the study identified general patterns that play a role in people’s attitudes regarding household food waste.

 

NEWS230315-PIC1“Generally, we found that people consider three things regarding food waste,” said doctoral student Danyi Qi, who co-authored the study. “They perceive there are practical benefits, such as a reduced risk of foodborne illness, but at the same time, they feel guilty about wasting food. They also know that their behaviors and how they manage their household influence how much food they waste.”

 

Specifically, this survey brought to the fore how Americans think about food waste:

 

  • Perceived benefits: 68 percent of respondents believe that throwing away food after the package date has passed reduces the chance of foodborne illness, and 59 percent believe some food waste is necessary to be sure meals are fresh and flavorful.

 

  • Feelings of guilt: 77 percent feel a general sense of guilt when throwing away food. At the same time, only 58 percent indicated they understand that throwing away food is bad for the environment, and only 42 percent believe wasted food is a major source of wasted money.

 

  • Control: 51 percent said they believe it would be difficult to reduce household food waste and 42 percent say they don’t have enough time to worry about it. Still, 53 percent admit they waste more food when they buy in bulk or purchase large quantities during sales. At the same time, 87 percent think they waste less food than similar households do.

 

In studying these patterns, the researchers see several areas to focus educational and policy efforts.

 

“First, we can do things to chip away at the perceived benefits of wasting food,” Qi said. “Our study shows that many people feel they derive some type of benefit by throwing food away, but many of those benefits are not real.”

 

imagesFor example, removing “Sell by” and “Use by” dates from food packages could significantly reduce the amount of good food that is trashed, the researchers said.

 

“Only in rare circumstances is that date about food safety, but people are confused about the array of dates on food packages,” Roe said. Recent efforts to create uniform national standards for such labels have received bipartisan support.

 

In addition, the researchers see an opportunity to help consumers understand the negative environmental impacts of food waste.

 

food_scraps_pileFood waste is the largest source of municipal solid waste in the U.S. and the most destructive type of household waste in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, the researchers report.

 

“Helping people become more aware of that wouldn’t be a silver bullet,” Roe said, “but it could sway 5 to 10 percent of people who are generally willing to change their behaviors to improve the environment but who have never put two and two together about the damaging impacts of food waste.”

 

Finally, researchers believe better data on measuring household waste could lead to improvements.

 

“Basically, right now everybody thinks they are doing as good as or better than everybody else,” Roe said. “It’s somebody else that’s creating food waste.”

 

To combat this perception, Roe, Qi, and other members of the research team are in the process of developing a smartphone app to measure more finely household food waste. Roe is now seeking Federal grants and private support to fund the project, a collaboration with the Pennington Biomedical Research Center at Louisiana State University. The LSU group developed the SmartIntake app several years ago to help participants in food intake studies report what they eat more accurately.

 

 

 

Filipic, M. (2016, July 21). News: Why Americans Waste So Much Food. Retrieved July 25 , 2016, from The Ohio State University College of Food, Agriculture, Environmental Sciences: http://cfaes.osu.edu/news/articles/why-americans-waste-so-much-food

 

Captain Hank Quinlan, Owner and Publisher, Chief Curmudgeon
Captain Hank Quinlan, Owner, and Publisher, Chief Curmudgeon with Sam Borsalino, Assistant Publisher

Dear Hail-Fellows well met, “The Fat Bastard Gazette” is written and edited by your favorite curmudgeons Captain Hank Quinlan and

Flatfoot Willie, Corespondent at Large with fellow Staff Writers
Flatfoot Willie, Correspondent at Large with fellow Staff Writers

Staff (monkeys in the back room). We offer an ongoing tirade to support or offend anyone of any large dimension, cultural background, religious affiliation, or color of skin. This gazette rails against an eclectic mix of circus ring ne’er do wells, big ring fatty and fatso whiners, congenital idiots, the usual motley assortment of the profoundly dumbfounded, and a favorite of intelligent men everywhere, the

May the Most Venerable H. L. Mencken bless our unworthy but earnest attempts at tongue in cheek jocularity .
May the Most Venerable H. L. Mencken bless our unworthy but earnest attempts at tongue in cheek jocularity.

“Great Booboisie.” Nor shall we ignore the wide assortment of shirkers, layabouts, and slugabeds.

Latest office staff confab at Fat Bastard HQ.
Latest office staff confab at Fat Bastard HQ.

All this and more always keeping our major focus on “Why so fat?”  Enough said? We at “The Fat Bastard Gazette” think so. If you like what you read, and you know whom you are, in this yellow blog, tell your friends. We would be elated with an ever-wider readership. We remain cordially yours, Captain Hank Quinlan and the Monkeys in the back room

“The Fat Bastard Gazette” does not purport to offer any definitive medical or pharmaceutical advice whatsoever in any explicit or implied manner. Always consult a qualified physician in all medical or pharmaceutical matters. “The Fat Bastard Gazette” is only the opinion of informed nonprofessionals for the general edification and entertainment of the greater public. 

 No similarities to any existing names or characters are expressed or implied. We reserve the right to offend or support anybody, anything, or any sacred totem across the globe.