Excluding the Middle

This is going to be one of those seemingly pointless posts that doesn’t say a whole lot (and I’ll try to keep it short); it’s mainly just a background type of thing that I want to put up once so that I can just link to it in the future since I’ll be referring to it repeatedly. But most of my readers will still be hungover from July 4th celebration anyhow and won’t really be paying attention or able to focus on anything more detailed.

Nutrient Intake, Nutrient Storage and Nutrient Oxidation

Broadly speaking, there are two primary fates for nutrients at this point which are oxidation or storage. A third that I should at least mention is that, under certain conditions, nutrients will sort of ‘sit’ in the bloodstream either causing problems there or eventually being excreted in the urine. Outside of various pathophysiologies (e.g. runaway diabetes where glucose is lost in the urine in large amounts), the urine excretion route is generally minimal approachinginsignificant and I won’t focus on it further here.

A Primer on Nutrition Part 2

On Monday, in A Primer on Nutrition Part 1, I discussed essential vs. inessential (aka indispensable vs. dispensable) nutrients along with the basics of both protein and carbohydrates. Today I want to finish taking a look at the basics of nutrition by looking at fat/cholesterol and then wrapping up ‘everything else’ including alcohol, vitamins/minerals and fiber (somewhat separate from vegetables).

A Primer on Nutrition Part 1

In many articles on the site, I go into a rather great deal of detail on various aspects of human nutrition and the various nutrients that comprise it. However, I find that it’s often exceedingly useful to go back to basics and discuss the fundamentals (this applies to all topics, not just nutrition). Where appropriate, I’ll point readers to other articles on the site(or my books) which discuss a given topic in more detail than I want to cover here.

A Quick Look at Food Allergies and Intolerances

In recent year, a lot of ideas have become strangely popular on this place that we call the Internets, one of those is concern over various food allergies and intolerances . As I’ll discuss below, not only are true food allergies and intolerance two totally different things, there is a lot of nonsensical information being thrown around about food allergies.

Energy Density

Conceptually, energy density refers to how many calories are found in a given weight or volume or food. Ok, what does that mean. Let’s say that you have 1 gram of each of the three macronutrients which are protein, carbohydrates and fat. We know that these are given calorie values of 4 cal/g for protein and carbs and 9 cal/g for fat. Clearly, in this simple example, fat has over twice the energy density of either carbs or fat (9 cal in one gram vs. 4 cal in one gram).

Diet Percentages: Part 2

On a day to day basis, your body has certain nutrient requirements, a topic which is discussed in detail elsewhere in this book. As described in those chapters, those nutrient requirements are generally related to how much you weigh (or how much lean body mass you have). There are a few exceptions, places where the requirements for a given nutrient are absolute which I’ll mention when necessary.

Diet Percentages: Part 1

Commonly, when you see diet plans laid out, the intake of the various macronutrients (protein, carbohydrate, fat) is presented in terms of percentages of total caloric intake. So you might see a diet which was 60% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 10% fat or some other set of percentages. Or you’ll see recommendations that ‘…athletes only need 15% of their calories from protein.’ or ‘don’t eat more than 30% of your total calories from fat’, that sort of thing.

Carbohydrate and Fat Controversies: Part 2

As noted, the usual argument goes that high-fat diets cause high-cholesterol, heart disease, cancer, obesity and the rest, as evidenced by the high incidence of those disease in modern diets (which are typically high in fat). But that’s a questionable conclusion to draw.

Carbohydrate and Fat Controversies: Part 1

In this article, I want to look at carbohydrate and fat intake in terms of the various arguments and debates that tend to surround them.

The main controversy here revolves around what amounts of carbohydrates and/or fat are ideal, healthy, recommended, etc. and that’s what I’ll focus on. I’m not going to deal with body composition explicitly in this article, I’ll save that for another day.

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