Insulin: An Undeserved Bad Reputation, Part 3…MOOOOO!!!!

 

This article represents part 3 of a series on how insulin has been unfairly demonized by many in the nutrition field.  If you have yet to read the first few parts, you can read Part 1 here, and you can read Part 2 here.  In this article, I will discuss how dairy products are among the most insulinemic foods out there, yet do not promote fat or weight gain, which pokes holes in the hypothesis that carbohydrates drive fat accumulation through insulin secretion. 

Dairy Products Are Insulinemic Yet Don’t Promote Weight Gain

One of the premises of individuals like Gary Taubes is that carbohydrates stimulate fat accumulation by stimulating insulin secretion.  I’ve already shown how this premise is flawed in the last two parts of my series.  Namely, I showed how protein also stimulates insulin secretion (sometimes as much as carbohydrate) yet does not promote weight or fat gain.  I also showed how the drug exenatide restores rapid-phase insulin secretion in diabetics yet promotes weight loss.

If the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis were true, then we would predict that foods that are extremely insulinemic would be uniquely fat promoting.  What many people do not realize is that dairy foods are among the most insulinemic foods out there.  In fact, they create much greater insulinemic responses than you would expect based on their carbohydrate content.  Not only that, but lactose, the primary carbohydrate in dairy foods, is actually low glycemic and produces slow rises in blood sugar (lactose has a glycemic index of 46 compared to white bread which is 100).  In fact, the glycemic index of many dairy products is quite low, with full-fat milk at 39, skim milk at 37, ice cream at 51, and fruit yogurt at 41.

Despite the low blood sugar responses, dairy products create very large insulin responses.  For example, in one study, dairy products created similar or greater insulin responses than white bread, despite the fact that the blood sugar response for some of the dairy products was 60% lower than the white bread.  In this study, the researchers compared the glycemic and insulinemic responses between white bread, a low gluten/lactose mixture, a high gluten/lactose mixture, cod with added lactose, milk, whey protein with added lactose, and cheese with added lactose.  All of the conditions contained 25 grams of carbohydrate and 18.2 grams of protein, except for the white bread and low gluten/lactose mixtures, which contained 25 grams of carbohydrate and 2.8 grams of protein.  Thus, lactose was the carbohydrate in all of the conditions except for white bread.

When you look at the insulin area-under-the-curve (AUC) for the various conditions, you can see that the dairy products actually created greater insulin responses than the white bread, despite having similar amounts of carbohydrate:

Insulin response of dairy foods compared to white bread

It is obvious that it is not the lactose that is responsible for the greater insulin response, because the gluten/lactose and cod/lactose mixtures resulted in similar or lower insulin responses to white bread.

The blood sugar response was also not responsible for the greater insulin response.  In fact, the blood sugar response was lower in all of the conditions compared to the white bread, with the milk creating the lowest blood sugar response yet 3rd highest insulin response:

Blood glucose response to dairy foods compared to white bread

The insulinogenic index, which relates the amount of insulin secretion to the blood glucose response, was significantly higher in the dairy products, indicating that the dairy products stimulated much greater insulin secretion that you would expect based on the blood glucose response:

Insulinogenic index of dairy products compared to white bread

This is not the only study to show the insulinemic effects of dairy products.  I showed in my previous article how whey protein, a dairy protein, created the highest insulin response compared to non-dairy proteins.  In a study on type 2 diabetics, the inclusion of whey protein in a meal increased the insulin response by 31-57%, while the blood glucose response was reduced by up to 21%.  In another study, the addition of 400 mL of milk to a bread meal increased the insulin response by 65%, despite the fact there was no change in the blood glucose response.  In this same study, the addition of 200 or 400 mL of milk to a spaghetti meal increased the insulin response by 300%; again, there was no change in the blood glucose response.  In fact, drinking milk with the spaghetti meal created an insulin response that was similar to white bread.

Here’s the results of another study showing the glycemic and insulinemic indexes of milk compared to white bread:

Why Does Dairy Stimulate So Much Damn Insulin?

It is clear that dairy products stimulate large amounts of insulin secretion, as much or more than white bread.  One of the reasons dairy products create large insulin responses is due to their amino acid content.  In fact, the postprandial insulin response from dairy products correlates with the rise in branched chain amino acids leucine, valine, and isoleucine.  I already pointed out in part 1 of this series how leucine will directly stimulate your pancreas to produce insulin.

Another reason that dairy products stimulate so much insulin secretion is their effects on a hormone called glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP).  Like GLP-1 which I wrote about in part 2 of this series, GIP is an incretin.  This means that it is a hormone produced by your intestines that stimulates insulin secretion.  Dairy products stimulate increased production of GIP.  In the study I discussed earlier which compared whey, milk, and cheese to white bread, whey and cheese resulted in 21-67% greater GIP responses than white bread:

Glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) response to dairy foods compared to white bread

The above data illustrates one of the problems with the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis…it assumes that carbohydrate is the primary stimulus of insulin secretion.  However, it is clear that amino acids and incretins play significant roles in insulin secretion as well.  And as I pointed out in part 1 of this series, the blood sugar response of a food only explains 23% of the variation in the insulin response.  Thus, a lot more goes into insulin secretion than the blood sugar response from eating carbohydrate.

Dairy and Weight Gain/Loss

It is clear that dairy products are extremely insulinemic, moreso than many high carbohydrate foods.  Thus, if the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis were true, then we would predict that a diet high in dairy products should promote weight and fat gain.  However, studies fail to show any relationship between dairy product intake and weight gain.  For example, there is no relationship between intake of dairy products and BMI in Japanese women.  In U.S. men, there is no relationship between an increase in dairy consumption and long-term weight gain.  In perimenopausal women, high intakes of dairy products are actually inversely associated with weight gain (i.e, higher dairy product intakes are associated with less weight gain).

While these are observational studies, the results from controlled studies on animals and humans are similar.  In fact, animal studies show less weight gain when they are fed dairy products.  In mice, yogurt supplementation results in less weight and fat gain than controls on isocaloric diets.  In another study, transgenic mice lost weight on energy restricted diets.  The mice were then allowed to eat ad libitum (i.e., as much as they felt like).  The mice fed dairy products regained less fat and weight during refeeding.  In a third study, the intake of dairy products, but not a calcium supplement, decreased weight gain and body fat in mice fed a high-fat diet.  In a fourth study, dairy protein attenuated fat gain in rodents fed a high-fat, high-sugar diet.  In a fifth study, a dairy diet attenuated weekly weight gain in Sprague-Dawley rats.

Of course, these are animal studies.  What about humans?  In one study, low-fat dairy products did not promote weight gain, while high-fat dairy products did.  Hmmm, could it be that the weight gain in this study was simply caused by excess calories and not insulin?   In another study, increased intake of dairy products did not affect body composition.  In a third study, increased intake of dairy products did not impair weight loss.  In a one-year study, increased intake of dairy products did not affect changes in fat mass.  In a 6-month follow-up to this study, high dairy product intake predicted lower levels of fat mass.  In a 9-month study, increased intake of dairy products did not affect weight maintenance, but the high dairy group exhibited evidence of greater fat oxidation.

Why Am I Not Fat?

My own personal experience with dairy fits right in with the science.  I consume a lot of dairy and have for many years.  I go through 2-3 gallons of milk per week.  I also go through a lot of Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, regular cheese, and whey protein.  I have some type of dairy with just about every meal.   Thus, I have large amounts of insulin flowing through my body pretty much all day.  If insulin was truly the fat-promoting, weight-gaining hormone that some have made it out to be, then I should be obese by now.  Yet, I am not…not even close.

Not only that, but the people who think insulin makes you hungry, that would imply that I should be starving all of the time with all of the insulin that is flowing through my body all day.  Yet, I’m not.

Got Milk?  Got Insulin!

The evidence is overwhelming that dairy products do not promote weight gain, and they actually inhibit weight gain in animal studies.  This is despite the fact that dairy products produce very large insulin responses, as much or greater than many high carbohydrate foods.  Thus, it is clear from this article, as well as my previous articles, that the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis is incorrect.  Insulin is not the criminal in the obesity epidemic; instead, it is an innocent bystander that has been wrongly accused through guilt by association.

Click here to read part 4 of my series, where I address the misconception of how insulin regulates blood sugar.

  93 Responses to “Insulin: An Undeserved Bad Reputation, Part 3…MOOOOO!!!!”

  1. Mr. Krieger,

    First let me thank you for sharing such excellent content. It is a genuine honor to stop by and read your work.

    While I would still not make any sort of wild claims about promoting weight gain, per se, the fact that this series is on insulin did make me want to ask your general take on a somewhat related topic. With wide variation in individual sensitivities to various foods, and coupled with the often high stress nature of modern life (both beyond our control and oftentimes even more from self-imposed stress) is it possible that dysfunctional insulin signaling/responses are often the product of unwittingly eating foods that we (the collective “we,” that is) may be sensitive to and/or from having blood glucose elevated rather chronically due to inappropriate chronic elevation of cortisol (again, as opposed to it serving its proper physiological role on an acute basis)?

    These sort of extenuating circumstances may potentially make what would otherwise be a relatively innocuous dietary choice into something that might be more problematic in that context, no? Or perhaps I am wildly off base here. Either way I will be more than happy to allow you to school me with your expertise, as I consider it a true honor to learn from people who blend the mental acuity and graciousness in sharing their knowledge as you do.

      

    • Giuseppe,

      Thank you for your comment and I’m glad you like my work!

      There is some evidence that stress-induced cortisol secretion can induce insulin resistance, which, in turn, would then lead to appetite dysregulation. There is also evidence that some people are stress “hyperresponders” in terms of cortisol while others are not, and also that some people overeat in response to stress while others do not. I would highly agree with you that the high stress nature of modern life certainly is a contributor to the obesity epidemic, and there is sufficient scientific data to support that. There is also evidence that high fat/high sugar foods can truly operate as “comfort” foods which actually alleviate distress and pain. I hope to write about these things here in the future.

        

      • As far as the stress in modern life goes, I do believe that taking time out in nature, and not to mention taking time to do nothing (not constantly using your cell phone etc. when you got nothing else to do) can help.

        Take a look at this review, and pleas give me your thoughts, James; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19826546

          

        • Fredrik,

          Interesting paper. There are certainly challenges in interpreting some of the existing data (i.e., correlation versus causation) and the quality of some of the studies referenced, but I certainly agree with you that occasional time-outs, whether in nature or just taking a break, certainly are beneficial.

            

  2. Krieger, you’ve done it again. You’ve completely thrown my head into a spin. Very nice and now I really understand more clearly the effect of carbs and diet. From what I gather, it’s not ingesting of carbs, but rather making sure I get the right amount of calories that are sustainable. Better carbs equals more satiety? More fats and better proteins to help the process? Very Nice! Thank you so much, because I am following a low carb diet but high amounts of protein and fats. My losses are due to calorie reduction and satiety, because I do feel full longer after a post workout shake of 45 g of Whey Protein. Thanks again old friend!
    Jason

      

  3. so much food for thought. I’ll avoid the puns for now.

    I really hope you’re angling all this work to be re-useable, angling toward ending up with something publish-able to compete against the pseudo science in the diet industry.

    For a long time I’ve been favoring the more expensive and horrid-tasting casein products over whey products, reasoning that casein’s slower-release protein would be better for hunger control, and partly this had to do with insulin control, (whey releasing more insulin, so preference goest to casein).

    This series on insulin is making me rethink my approach – the only argument left standing is the slower gastric emptying time for casein, and therefore the better hunger control of casein over whey.

    Also, I never have protein powder alone. I use a blender to liquify spinach and toss the powder in that and also have some solid food – eggs or chicken or my new favourite, squid.

    Where do you come down on this issue – is the increased gastric emptying time for casein significant, and is it significant FOR hunger control, or is there some kind of diminishing return – another hour in the stomach does not buy you much in terms of hunger control hormones after say the 2nd or 3rd hour?

      

    • Sam,

      The research definitely supports slower gastric emptying times to help with appetite. In fact, there was a recent study published that compared casein to whey and satiety was superior in the casein condition.

        

      • I thought your comment was pretty sweet … but when I went to hunt down the study you’re talking about I’m finding a lot of the opposite?

        Very very possible I’m misunderstanding the studies though.

        This one reviews studies about appetite and protein sources:
        http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/87/5/1558S.full

        And these are casein vs whey for appetite studies it mentions:
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12575908?dopt=Abstract
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11237351?dopt=Abstract

          

        • Hi, Shane,

          One of the studies you linked to used a breakdown product of casein, rather than casein itself. The other study did show superior subjective suppression of appetite with whey. While studies are conflicting in this area, it should be noted that appetite is quite a complicated beast, and the impact of a particular protein on appetite can vary from one study to another just due to differences in study methodology. In other words, was a preload consumed? If so, what was the type of preload? How was appetite assessed? Did they measure ad libitum food intake at a later meal (ad libitum intake may not be reflective of subjective appetite sensations)? How much time later was the meal given? There are soooo many factors that can play a role.

          Just to give you an example…in one of the studies you linked to, whey or casein was given 90 minutes before a meal. In this case, it wouldn’t surprise me that whey was superior to casein, due to the large insulin response created by whey, which will tend to peak 60-90 minutes after whey ingestion. However, results might have been different if the meal had been given, say, 3 hours later. This is why study design can play a big role.

            

  4. In my experience, dairy can be “fattening” in a low carb context, but not for the typical insulin (ir)rationale. Even if one is eating fatty meats, chicken with skin, bacon, etc., these foods tend to be self-limiting for most people. There are some people who may eat bacon grease or all of the drippings from a fatty burger, but animal fats and oils are not particularly palatable to most people. For example, I use 80-85% ground beef because I like the flavor and texture of the finished product. But if I’m browning it for a chili, I drain excess fat as I don’t like greasy chili. I’m not about to swig olive oil, and if I did, I can’t envision drinking too much. But I can easily rack up the dairy fat/calories from cream in my coffee, I could eat LC cheesecake to excess calories easily, etc. And cheese? Soooo easy to overdo. In an LC context, where we’re “taught” to “up the fat” these days, one could get into a lot of trouble heeding that advice with dairy fats.

      

    • CarbSane,

      I think you’ve hit on the concept of energy density here. Many high-fat dairy products (like whole milk and cheese) are extremely energy dense. On top of that, you’re dealing with liquid calories versus solid calories in terms of the full-fat milk, which will not be as satiating. So in this sense, I would agree that dairy can promote weight gain. Myself, I use low fat and non-fat dairy products so this tends not to be an issue for me.

        

      • Liquid calories have been shown in many studies to be more satiating.. the expansion and subsequent retraction of the stomach when consuming solids increases the ghrelin response causing hunger earlier and stronger.

          

        • Liquid calories have not been shown in many studies to be more satiating. If you have the references to back up your claims, please provide them.

          Also, the expansion and retraction of the stomach does not increase the ghrelin response. Also, alterations in ghrelin within a physiological range tend not to be associated with changes in hunger.

            

          • whole milk is very satiating for me, if I juice my own fruit like oranges and pineapples apples etc it is very satiating for me. there is more to satiaty then fiber in food, there is protein, fats, some carbs, vita/min. phytochemicals etc. dont know where they got the idea somehow liquid caloires are worse then solid foods for satiaty and appetite control, I always thought appetite control originates in the brain when it gets the signals your adequatly fed so it shuts down desire to eat.

              

  5. Good post, James. I must say, nevertheless, that insulin is part of the problem, not the only one. Most trials showing the insulin response to a meal are just that, after 1 meal, in particular “healthy” individuals. You would expect that postprandial insulinemia after a calorie restricted diet high in carbohydrates or high protein/fat/LC would be practically the same (because as you imply, protein stimulates insulin as much as carbs). However, this is not the case. You know that insulin stimulation by protein/aminoacids is not equal as stimulation by carbs.

    The other issue is BG. While the insulin response can be significant after a big protein meal, BG stays relatively low. Instead, after a high carbohydrate meal, BG rises. So, after eating a meal high in carbs you have a more sustained release of insulin and BG. When you eat a high protein or, in this case, dairy protein, you stimulate an initial peak of insulin which comes down farily “quickly” and no significant effect on BG. Considering you eat your dairy in a LC environment, the insulin response wouldnt be the same as in a high carb one.

    Good work on Post 4 BTW.

      

    • Lucas,

      Most trials showing the insulin response to a meal are just that, after 1 meal, in particular “healthy” individuals.

      One of the trials I referenced was on obese people. And, in fact, the insulin response is exaggerated in most obese people, even with a high protein, low or moderate carb meal. Yet, we know that high protein intakes are beneficial for weight loss for obese people. This is why it is misguided to focus on insulinemia.

      (because as you imply, protein stimulates insulin as much as carbs).

      I never made such an implication. I said protein CAN stimulate insulin as much as carbs, but that’s in certain situations. Certainly on average, carbohydrate will stimulate more insulin secretion than protein, but when you start looking at individual foods, this is not always the case.

      Considering you eat your dairy in a LC environment, the insulin response wouldnt be the same as in a high carb one.

      But I don’t eat my dairy in a LC environment. My carb intake is actually moderate to high (probably 50% of energy intake or so). And most people do not consume dairy in a LC environment. Yet, we know dairy does not lead to weight gain based on numerous studies cited. Thus, it is clear that insulin is not the driver of weight gain that Taubes and others have claimed that it is.

        

  6. “Why Am I Not Fat? My own personal experience with dairy fits right
    in with the science. I consume a lot of dairy and have for many years. I go
    through 2-3 gallons of milk per week. I also go through a lot of Greek yogurt,
    cottage cheese, regular cheese, and whey protein. I have some type of dairy
    with just about every meal. Thus, I have large amounts of insulin flowing through
    my body pretty much all day. If insulin was truly the fat-promoting, weight-gaining
    hormone that some have made it out to be, then I should be obese by now.
    Yet,
    I am not…not even close. Not only that, but the people who think insulin makes
    you hungry, that would imply that I should be starving all of the time with
    all of the insulin that is flowing through my body all day. Yet, I’m not.

    Same can be said by numerous individuals who consume large amounts sugar, refined
    flour, junk food..( you name it) and yet don’t get fat. If you consider such
    cases as proof that eating large amounts of sugar, refined flour and junk food
    is not fattening, then, your argument above can be considered as sincere.

    I bet you don’t consider it as such proof (which I’ll agree to of course)…
    so your argument makes no sense at all. People using isolated examples (or worse,
    a personal isolated example) to backup their point, while on the other
    hand bashing the logic of others, are highly suspect in my book.

      

    • I bet you don’t consider it as such proof (which I’ll agree to of course)…
      so your argument makes no sense at all. People using isolated examples (or worse,
      a personal isolated example) to backup their point, while on the other
      hand bashing the logic of others, are highly suspect in my book.

      Franck, you would have a point if all I used was an isolated example, and nothing else. Anecdotal evidence, on its own, is not good evidence. However, my personal testimonial was nothing more than an additional point to the large body of scientific research that I presented on how dairy does not increase weight gain risk. I linked to a number of studies showing this; my personal experience only supports what the huge body of scientific evidence already shows. So there is nothing wrong with the use of a personal testimonial in this context. My arguments would still stand without the testimonial.

        

      • “large body of scientific research that I presented on how dairy does not increase weight gain risk”

        Last time I looked outside dairy was turning a 80lb calf into a 2000lb monster in as little as 6-9mnths………..

          

        • Last time I looked the consumption of milk by a calf is not relevant to the consumption of milk by a human adult.

          If you have research to show that milk consumption directly causes weight gain, then please provide it. I’ve already provided plenty of scientific references showing the opposite.

            

        • the cows growth is determined by hormones not hte source of the food, it is how your body allocates the nutrients it receives which is geneticlally determined. horses and cows and goats can get fat on grass alone (should know owned horses and goats before) yet it is a low carb high fiber food, and no fat either. it is how the body is designed to use the nutrients it gains and how it reacts to overnutrtion or under nutrtion.

            

  7. James, your excellent series has been a great revelation on the workings of insulin. I too am a dairy fan, but I use only raw Jersey milk with some made into kefir, plus some cheese (usually goat cheese lately). I’d be curious to see a post about your views on raw vs pasteurized/homogenized dairy and whole vs low-fat dairy (forgive me if you’ve already covered these topics since I’m new to your blog and haven’t looked at earlier posts yet).

      

  8. I’m new to your blog and this was a fascinating read for me. I have a very unscientific mind, so please excuse the following question which seems quite logical to me but may be way off:

    If whey or dairy ‘rev up’ insulin production while at the same time keeping BG low, would it help a pre-diabetic like me to consume some dairy along with carbs to help raise insulin to counter BG spikes?

    And I just have to ask this, James: Why are you consuming so much dairy – and low-fat at that! I would understand it if it was raw milk, cheese, etc. but that does not seem to be the case. I consumed a lot of dairy in my life but gave up most of it because of what they do to the milk and how the cows are kept. I don’t have access to raw milk. I’ve also been slender all my life.

      

  9. Hi, I’m new to the site as well, but it looks like you have some interesting reading here and I look forward to delving into it.

    As for dairy and insulin, though, I don’t see where you can say that because dairy causes an insulin rise but weight gain does not (always) go along with it, that that proves that insulin is not the main culprit as far as fat gain.

    This makes sense in that the purpose of dairy is to grow immature animals to the stage where they can start getting enough nutrition on their own to become independent of Mother. And young animals don’t grow in fat, they grow in muscle and bone.

    All it can prove is that there may be something specific about dairy products that allows insulin to be secreted but yet temper weight gain. Which speaks to dairy, not insulin.

      

    • As for dairy and insulin, though, I don’t see where you can say that because dairy causes an insulin rise but weight gain does not (always) go along with it, that that proves that insulin is not the main culprit as far as fat gain.

      Jennifer,

      If this was the only piece of evidence that I used, then you would have a point. However, there is a concept known as the convergence of evidence. In this case, I gave a variety of reasons as to why the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis fails. When you have such a variety of examples and observations that are not consistent with the hypothesis, then it is clear that it’s the hypothesis that fails.

        

      • I was thinking too that insulin and leptin are strongly connected, insulin is a satiaty hormone so is leptin (there is still a lot they do not know about leptin) but you can get fat for a lot of reasons, poor quality nutrients if your famine sensitive (genetically speaking) low nutrients like vitad3 for glucose tolerance (fat cells are very good sponges for sugar that is stuck in the circulation to long and anyone who knows sugar is very oxidative and damaging to cells if they stick to it and oxidize) fat cells store more then just fat, they store cholesterol when it is in short supply on a regular basis, vitad3 if your runninglow all the time, since fat cells are your last line of defense against the damages of sugar, and other toxins that are incompeletly metabolized because your lack nutrients, also fat cells also tell muscles to use fat instead of sugar for fuel and it takes a lot of fat cells to make enough fat for the body using sugar (2.1 grams of sugar to make one gram of fat) and it must also release a lot of fat before a meal to compensate when your insulin levels go back up after eating (so the cells have fuel since it cannot use sugar very well) did you know that the hormones adrenalin and cortisol counter the insulin affects on fat cells allowing the fat to release despite high insulin levels? might explain the hypoglycemic like symptoms one gets if hungry or having not ate in a while despite normal blood glucose but still high insulin due to metabolic dysfunction. if at night the insulin levels are not coming down due to glucose intolerance have fun trying to sleep well and not be wired and tired at the same time.You know at night you seldom eat for many hours and naturally if you cannot release glycogen stores very well due to high insulin or fat then adreanlin will fit the bill in getting fuel but then you cant sleep well and end up sleep deprived.

          

  10. James,

    Good points about dairy being insulinogenic, and yet not fattening by itself. But I think you are missing something important here: Advocates of the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis typically do not claim that insulin by itself induces fat storage; glucose must also be present. Taubes quotes Edgar Gordon on p. 392 of Good Calories, Bad Calories as follows:

    the storage of fast, and therefore the production and maintenance of obesity, cannot take place unless glucose is being metabolized. Since glucose cannot be used by most tissues without the presence of insulin, …obesity is impossible in the absence of adequate tissue concentrations of insulin…

    Now Taubes and Gordon may have overstated this as an absolute, since we now know that some fat storage is also possible by other means, e.g. by acylation stimulating hormone (ASH). However, this doesn’t in any way detract from the point that insulin-mediated fat storage requires glucose in order to store fat.

    Thus, there is no contradiction between the fact that milk, cottage cheese and yogurt are not fattening (when eaten in isolation), because they contain lactose as their main sugar, not glucose.
    While lactose can be digested into galactose plus glucose, the digestion is typically slow, as evidenced by the low glycermic index of milk, as you noted in your post. (While you cited a GI of 46, I’ve found other citations putting it as low as about 30: (http://www.brianmac.co.uk/gindex.htm).
    However, the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis would predict that combining dairy with foods that contain high levels of readily available glucose, either as sugars or starches. The real test of the carbohydrate hypothesis is to look at whether such sweetened dairy product foods are significantly more fattening than either the unsweetened dairy or the glycermic carbs consumed separately, because of the significantly higher net insulin (which is increased by the dairy) together with the given amount of glucose (from the high glycemic sugar or starch).

    I’ll bet you find that ice cream or yogurt sweetened with sugar, HFCS, or even certain fruit fillings is much more fattening than the plain dairy.

    Also, while unsweetened dairy may not be fattening, the insulin spike from dairy will at a minimum immediately disrupt fat mobilization for perhaps a few hours, and will make it harder to lose weight than abstaining from dairy on an otherwise low carbohydrate diet. It is important to distinguish between “non fattening” foods, and food which slow weight loss.

    Todd

      

    • There also might be an issue of the time horizon. What happens after one meal might not be indicative of what happens after years of exposure.

      There have been several diet studies that have shown low-carb diets lower fasting insulin levels overtime better than low fat diets.

      This is my favorite:
      http://www.nutritionandmetabolism.com/content/3/1/7

        

      • There also might be an issue of the time horizon. What happens after one meal might not be indicative of what happens after years of exposure.

        If years of exposure to an insulinemic diet were a problem, then years of exposure to dairy products would be a problem as well. Yet the scientific data does not reveal any problem.

        There have been several diet studies that have shown low-carb diets lower fasting insulin levels overtime better than low fat diets.

        The vast majority of the studies show lower fasting insulin levels because of the greater weight loss with the low carb diets. Even if there is an effect of a low carb diet on fasting insulin that is independent of weight loss, this is not evidence that carbohydrates drive weight gain through the action of insulin, nor is it evidence that postprandial insulinemia is something that should be avoided for health and weight loss.

          

    • Advocates of the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis typically do not claim that insulin by itself induces fat storage; glucose must also be present.

      This is still not consistent with the scientific data. First, dairy products are rarely consumed by themselves. Milk, yogurt, and cheese are typically consumed with glucose-elevating foods. Yet we know from controlled human and animal trials that dairy does not cause weight gain despite being consumed along with glucose-elevating foods.

      Second, as I highlighted in this article, this stance reveals an inconsistency in the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis. On one hand, advocates of the hypothesis claim that the primary way in which insulin contributes to weight gain is through the inhibition of lipolysis. Insulin will do this regardless of whether glucose is elevated or not. Yet we know that dairy, which is highly insulinemic, does not cause fat gain in the absence of an energy surplus.

      If the claim is the problem is the elevation of insulin and glucose at the same time, you still have the problem in that dairy is usually consumed with other glucose-elevating foods, yet does not promote weight gain independent of energy intake.

      However, this doesn’t in any way detract from the point that insulin-mediated fat storage requires glucose in order to store fat.

      Insulin-mediated fat storage does not require glucose to store fat. In fact, glyceroneogenesis makes a large contribution to fat synthesis even under high carbohydrate conditions. Also, rodents genetically engineered to increase glucose uptake into fat cells do not become obese. In fact, their insulin sensitivity improved.

      Thus, there is no contradiction between the fact that milk, cottage cheese and yogurt are not fattening (when eaten in isolation), because they contain lactose as their main sugar, not glucose

      But people usually don’t consume these foods in isolation, and both controlled human and animal trials (where these foods were not consumed in isolation) did not cause weight gain.

      I’ll bet you find that ice cream or yogurt sweetened with sugar, HFCS, or even certain fruit fillings is much more fattening than the plain dairy.

      Ice cream and sugar-sweetened yogurt are extremely energy dense and higher in calories, so of course they are going to be potentially more fattening. This has nothing to do with insulin.

      In fact, full-fat dairy (which will not increase the insulin response any more than low-fat dairy) has been found to cause weight gain, while low-fat dairy does not. Why? Because the full-fat dairy had extra calories!

      Also, while unsweetened dairy may not be fattening, the insulin spike from dairy will at a minimum immediately disrupt fat mobilization for perhaps a few hours, and will make it harder to lose weight than abstaining from dairy on an otherwise low carbohydrate diet.

      There is no scientific evidence to support this statement. Again, if this were true, then controlled studies would show weight gain, and rodent studies would not show the weight loss that they show. Second, you are displaying the cognitive miserliness that I described in this article. In other words, you are not considering what happens over a full 24-hour period. Alcohol disrupts fat mobilization during the hours it is being metabolized, but there is no increase in fat balance over a 24-hour period when energy intake matches energy expenditure…fat oxidation increases during the time alcohol is not being metabolized to compensate for the reduced oxidation during the few hours it is metabolized.

        

      • “In fact, full-fat dairy (which will not increase the insulin response any more than low-fat dairy) has been found to cause weight gain, while low-fat dairy does not.”

        In one study on a grand total of 45 volunteers? Sorry, but when you look at more data you see the opposite is more likely true: full-fat dairy is associated with a lower risk of obesity.
        http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/02/12/275376259/the-full-fat-paradox-whole-milk-may-keep-us-lean

          

        • Donjoe,

          The article you link to cites observational studies, which cannot established cause/effect. The data I linked to was a randomized controlled trial, which always takes precedence over observational data. If you find statistical significance with 45 volunteers, that is not a fault of sample size, as it is often more difficult to find statistically significant results with smaller sample sizes. In fact, there is nothing wrong with a sample of 45 if the sample is adequately randomized and is representative of the population being studied.

          Note that I am not saying that full-fat dairy is bad to consume. I am simply showing that weight gain comes down to calories, and it is easier to overconsume calories with full-fat dairy versus low- or non-fat dairy. If one does a good job of controlling calorie intake, there is nothing wrong with full-fat dairy.

            

          • But that is exactly what the low-carb camp claims its diets do, among other things: help control calories, albeit without having to count them. By shifting away from carbs you open up the fat stores to be used, which also influences the hunger signal cycle, and at the same time you eliminate the sugar cravings that would make you snack when you’re not hungry, just for the sake of feeling a pleasant taste. Just because somebody compared low-fat and full-fat dairy in a laboratory setting with controlled consumption of food that did not allow caloric self-regulation doesn’t mean that self-regulation doesn’t occur with real-world consumption and that full-fat dairy doesn’t get better results in the real world. Observational studies can be better than controlled trials if they’re observing the right things while the trials are controlling the wrong things.

              

  11. Would eating fats with milk products reduce the insulin response they generate?(for example: eating cottage cheese with peanut butter)

      

    • I don’t know of any research that has looked at the effects of the addition of fat intake to dairy on the insulin response. This study showed a similar insulin response of full fat cheese compared to non-fat milk, suggesting that the addition of fat does not moderate the insulin response.

        

      • Should dairy products be limited by those with insulin resistance because of the insulin response they generate then?

          

        • Also, does casein show a high insulin response?

            

        • There is no evidence that dairy products should be limited by those with insulin resistance. In fact, there is some evidence that dairy has been found to be beneficial to those with insulin resistance.

            

          • Thank you very much for your time and answers.
            I have recently been diagnosed with PCOS and one of the key dietary changes I was advised to make was to avoid cottage cheese because of the insulin response it creates(I had been eating 1-2 cups of a day). Would this recommendation be made on “old school” notions of dairy and insulin?

              

          • Yes, I would agree that this recommendation comes from the “old school” notion.

              

  12. James,

    What’s the truth about hypoglycemia then?
    Henry Seale discovered reactive hypoglycemia when he noticed some of his patients had the same symptoms someone with diabetes has when too much insulin is injected. He theorized that certain people overeacts to carbs by producing too much insulin causing post-prandial blood sugar drops.

    He indeed fixed his hypoglycemic patients symptoms with a lower carb diet.
    Cheese is usually well tolerated by people with reactive hypoglycemia.
    But why? Does it mean that it doesn’t matter how insulinogenic a food is, only what
    foods an impaired pancreas overeacts to?

    Or maybe we should rethink the whole reactive hypoglycemia, disglycemia, dysinsulinemia story?

      

  13. very good article,
    I am reading “The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman” from Ferris and he claims that dairy should be given up to lose weights, which is false according to this article!

    Great, I can eat my daily part of cheese and my glass of milk without being guilty :-)

      

    • Wow, thanks for mentioning that title, I’ve found it to be a fantastic book! It’s not so much original material as it is a distillation of the best knowledge that’s out there about fat loss, muscle gain, reaching orgasm, sleeping well etc., all taken from highly competent sources, many of which I could recognize from my previous encounters with their materials on the Web – Gary Taubes, Steve Pavlina, Nina Hartley etc. Awesome awesome find.

        

  14. Glad I found your posting. I’ve had a strange correlation between having milk (cereal portion) for breakfast and a moderate hypoclycemic event 3-4 hours later. For years I thought those events were in response to heavy exertion the previous day, but that was never consistant. I finally made the connection between the milk intake and hypoclycemic event and did this search. I can say without hesitation that I experience those events together if I don’t ingest more food within 2-3 hours of having milk in a large volume.

    Thanks for your detailed info !

      

  15. I have just personally experienced the insulin response of dairy. I am on the 1st day of a carb cycling regimen where I had zero starchy carbs at my mid-day meal (I normally consume a carb heavy meal at this time). Apart from a slight light-headiness after the meal which I assume was down to the fact that my body is “used” to a high-carb meal (oats) at this time of day I felt fine all of the afternoon. I then remembered that I had earlier decided to consume the milk (skimmed) I would have consumed with the oats but had forgotten to. So I drank a couple of hundred mls of the milk and got on with whatever I was doing. Within 10 minutes I was gripped by one of the most sudden and powerful hypo episodes I have ever experienced in my life. My vision went blurred and started to swim and I had to sit down I felt so unsteady on my feet. This passed completely in a couple of minutes and I felt right as rain again. Lesson learned though. Oddly I drank milk without any problems on a long-term low carb diet a few years back so there may be some adaptive element involved.

      

  16. I was wondering, is it possible purpose of fat cells is not just storage but to convert excess sugars to fat since the cells are resistant to gluocse uptake in metabolic syndrome? so if you lower sugar/glucose load would that not be a incentive for the body to apoptosis the fat cells also considering fat cells job is to recycle cholesterol, store it when dietary sources are deplete and to store fat soluable minerals and vitamins when these tend to run low at times due to poor diets or dieting efforts? so increasing fat soluable vita/min rich foods and cholesterol increase so the body stops hoarding? why have excess fat stores if you have enough fat soluable vita min and adequate quality dietary cholesterol and if fat increase is response to dieting efforts (remembering the famine it went through for weight loss) so if you eliminate the famine, eliminate the vita d, k, calciums, cholesterol deficiency etc should it not mean fat cells will commit suicide no longer being needed instead of shrinking when emptied due to dieting? shrunken fat cells keep crying out for more fuel don’t they? they need to be destroyed don’t they to make a obese person a thin person both in fact and in metabolic profile?
    rose

      

    • Hi, Rose,

      If cells are resistant to take up glucose, they can’t turn it into fat since they have to take up the glucose in the first place.

      Also, fat cells do not commit apoptosis in the fashion you are describing. Fat cells in general either shrink or increase in size. Fat cells do not need to be “destroyed” to make an obese person thin. The triglyceride content of the fat cells simply needs to be dramatically reduced.

        

      • I have come to understand not all cells are resistant at the same time, fat cells are the last to become resistant hence the reason you stop gaining weight after awhile if all dietary habits remain the same. I have read some studies on pubmed and other journals (where you can read it for free on highwire press)that fat cells do apoptosize. also fat cells have other jobs to do besides energy conservation. I do have a question, is it possible to either be born or to develope an inability to produce vitad3 in the skin from unprotected sun exposure? and is it possible to lose the ability to absorb it through the skin even if you do? i am having trouble finding any info on that. because I did all the recommendations on exposure to sun for vitad3 production not using sunscreen do not wash it off for 24 hours that sorta thing, and the only thing that seems to have helped was actually taking vitad3 wool oil orally. since I megadosed on it last year and reduced down to mainteance dose (i started to develope my symptoms after two months (twice) not taking any at all. when I take it regularly my symptoms gradually dissappear (depending howlong I have not taken any). I have lost weight too, not alot but enough to be noticable. without dieting or restricting carbs (I only portion control or restrict stripped carbs like white flour, white rice that sorta thing) I am finding I do not have binging episodes anymore (even tho I have not low caloire dieted in years)according to something I read it seems when your insulin resistant yor have to have a higher glucose load in the blood to overcome it in the brain and when you fall below this or down toward the normal level the glucose is not high enough concentration to get into the brain and then you get symptoms of low blood sugar even tho your blood levels are in the upper healthy range. a (glucose set point is elevated) hence why you want to eat sweets when your blood sugar is still in normal range or upper normal range your brain needs it to to be higher concentrations to get into the brain, do you understand what I mean? this is a viable explanation of what is happening in metabolic syndrome why you need to eat all the time and get the shakes when you dont.

          

  17. I don’t think this really does anything to disprove Gary taubes contention that high carb diets promote more weight gain. Gary never said that Dairy promotes weight gain. It is not the insulin response perse which causes weight gain, it is the effect that the insulin response has on carbohydrates SPECIFICALLY. Eating high carbohydrate diets causes weight gain because the insulin response precipitates the conversion of glucose into adipose tissue to counteract elevated blood glucose. Eating dairy may provoke an insulin response, but in the absence of high blo
    od glucose, there is no sugar to convert into fat, and hence no weight gain.
    Besides, the vast majority of clinical studies which have compared Isocaloric high fat and high carb diets conclude that the high fat diets are superior for weight loss despite having EQUAL calories. If you don’t believe me just do a search on google scholar and you quickly see that I’m not making this up.

    One such study, conducted by kekwick and Pawan, compared three groups put on calorically equal (isocaloric) semi-starvation diets of 90% fat, 90% protein or 90% carbohydrate. Here was the outcome –
    1,000 calories at 90% fat = weight loss of 408 g (0.9lb) per day
    1,000 calories at 90% protein = weight loss of 272g (0.6lb) per day
    1,000 calories at 90% carbohydrates = weight GAIN of 108 g (0.24lb) per day.

    Its also worth noting that a lot of low carb diet advocates also advocate restricted protein consumption, while encouraging people to get the majority of calories from fat. The reason for this is that your body can only assimilate about 400-600 calories of protein a day, and the rest gets shuttled off to the liver and converted to glucose via glucogensis (a taxing process which creates toxic bi-products like uric acid). So a high protein diet can also be a high carb diet in effect, albeit with slow release and more satiety.
    I wonder if that is why protein provokes an insulin response? Don’t know, but worth a thought.

      

  18. Another author raised a good point about dairy which may be valid -

    “I think it’s more accurate to say that acute insulin spikes are different from chronically elevated insulin levels, especially when it comes to appetite regulation and metabolic derangement. Consider this study (2010 American Society for Nutrition, Effect of premeal consumption of whey protein and its hydrolysate on food intake and postmeal glycemia and insulin responses in young adults1,2,3)
    whose authors gave either whey protein isolate or whey protein hydrolysate to subjects 30 minutes before a pizza meal. Subjects given whey protein isolate, but not hydrolysate, reduced post meal blood glucose and insulin levels, and ate less pizza. The whey still released insulin, but it didn’t linger for very long and it led to improved post meal numbers. It wasn’t chronically elevated. The subjects weren’t hungrier, contrary to what you might expect from someone who’d just experienced a jump in insulin.”

    Similarly studies show that dairy consumption is inversely associated with insulin resistance syndrome while high carbohydrate consumption has been shown to cause insulin resistance in numerous clinical studies.

      

  19. Somehow I am missing the point or I do not understand your logic reasoning:
    “I showed how protein also stimulates insulin secretion (sometimes as much as carbohydrate) yet does not promote weight or fat gain.”
    “If the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis were true, then we would predict that foods that are extremely insulinemic would be uniquely fat promoting.”
    “The above data illustrates one of the problems with the carbohydrate/insulin hypothesis…it assumes that carbohydrate is the primary stimulus of insulin secretion.”

    There is just no way to come to your conclusions from the evidence you are presenting. You are talking about utterly unrelated facts here. Add enough sugar to your dairy products and they will be fattening. Insulin in the absence of sugar is different than insulin in the presence of sugar. I also remember a study where I saw two different insulin curves (would have to go through all my stuff to find it):
    -after milk products there was an insulin spike and after while the insulin was LOWER than basal FOR HOURS,
    -after carb there was a spike and insulin was higher for a long time afterwards. But it is more complex in the end, more complex than you or I are describing it, and it is NOT well researched.

      

    • There is just no way to come to your conclusions from the evidence you are presenting.

      It is quite simple to come to those conclusions.

      You are talking about utterly unrelated facts here.

      No, they are not unrelated. Insulin is blamed for weight gain primarily because of its suppression of lipolysis. Insulin suppresses lipolysis whether that insulin came from carbohydrates or from protein. In fact, it only takes small elevations in insulin to suppress lipolysis.

      This is not to also mention that lipolysis is irrelevant anyway. What really matters is fat oxidation…not lipolysis. You could have all of the lipolysis in the world but those liberated fatty acids can simply be repackaged back into triglycerides. This is why energy balance matters…if you are not in an energy deficit, you will not oxidize fat, even if your insulin levels are low.

      Add enough sugar to your dairy products and they will be fattening.

      Dairy products already contain sugar. It’s called lactose. This is also not to mention that most people don’t consume dairy products by themselves…they consume it with meals, which offers plenty of glucose to go along with the dairy. Yet research shows that dairy is associated with better weight control.

      This is also not to mention that sucrose is not extremely insulinemic. In fact, whey protein is more insulinemic than sucrose.

      Insulin in the absence of sugar is different than insulin in the presence of sugar.

      No it’s not, not when it comes to lipolysis. Insulin will suppress lipolysis whether or not sugar is present.

      I also remember a study where I saw two different insulin curves (would have to go through all my stuff to find it):

      You “remember” studies yet you can’t provide them. If you are going cite such studies, you need to present them.

      This is also not to mention that there are a lot of dairy/insulin studies out there, and most likely I have read many more than you have. And the bottom line is that they contradict Gary’s hypothesis.

        

      • //Dairy products already contain sugar. It’s called lactose. This is also not to mention that most people don’t consume dairy products by themselves…they consume it with meals, which offers plenty of glucose to go along with the dairy. Yet research shows that dairy is associated with better weight control.//

        -The lactose in dairy is extremely minimal, especially fermented dairy.

        //This is also not to mention that sucrose is not extremely insulinemic. In fact, whey protein is more insulinemic than sucrose.//

        sucrose is less insulinemic than starch because it is 50% fructose and fructose doesn’t raise insulin. It is however, much more insulinotropic than either starch or protein, and promotes both insulin resistance and leptin resistance a great deal more. While hyperinsulinemia probably doesn’t contribute to obesity, insulin resistance likely does (albeit less than leptin resistance).

        //You “remember” studies yet you can’t provide them. If you are going cite such studies, you need to present them.//

        I can fix that. From mark’s daily apple -
        “Consider this study – http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2010/02/17/ajcn.2009.28406.abstract
        whose authors gave either whey protein isolate or whey protein hydrolysate to subjects 30 minutes before a pizza meal. Subjects given whey protein isolate, but not hydrolysate, reduced post meal blood glucose and insulin levels, and ate less pizza. The whey still released insulin, but it didn’t linger for very long and it led to improved post meal numbers. It wasn’t chronically elevated.
        If full-fat dairy really did have similarly negative effects on the insulin response that eventually led to the metabolic syndrome, you wouldn’t see studies (http://www.marksdailyapple.com/monday-musings-dairy-fat-good-and-placebos-win-with-a-twist/#axzz2Oct3wnex) showing that people who ate the most dairy fat were at the lowest risk for diabetes. You also wouldn’t see the high number of epidemiological studies (http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com.au/2010/04/full-fat-dairy-for-cardiovascular.html) linking full-fat dairy intake with lower risk of heart disease and stroke, both of which are strongly linked (https://login.medscape.com/login/sso/getlogin?urlCache=aHR0cDovL3d3dy5tZWRzY2FwZS5jb20vdmlld2FydGljbGUvNTcwODA5&ac=401) with insulin resistance.

        Again I reiterate that I no longer believe insulin causes weight gain (though the jury is still out on insulin resistance), nonetheless hyperinsulinemia is definitely dangerous.
        While it’s true that protein does contribute, everybody needs protein so it’s a moot point. The main variable in diet is carbohydrate and fat. If one wishes to avoid hyperinsulinemia, it stands to reason that one should substitute fat for carbohydrate while keeping protein consumption down to between 100 – 150 grams a day.
        In fact both Dr.Rosedale and Dr.Jaminet make a convincing argument that the optimum diet for health is both low in carbohydrates AND protein, while being highest in fat.

          

      • It’s also worth noting that dairy (especially unfermented and low fat dairy) is far more insulinogenic than meat, fish or eggs. For example in this study (http://www.nature.com/ejcn/journal/v59/n3/full/1602086a.html) children were given strict diets of either lean beef or skim milk, and the skim milk diet induced hyperinsulinemia and insulin resistance after just seven days. It sounds troublesome, but they used skim milk – a refined, fundamentally altered food. The meat had no such effect.

        Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/dairy-insulin/#ixzz2Ocxw4Gcp

          

  20. http://philmaffetone.com/updateondairy.cfm

    Found this article on dairy. Quite a complex subject.

    When doing studies, even the breed of cow has to be considered.

      

  21. after reading some articles on stephan guyenet’s website I have now come to the conclusion that the carbohydrate hypothesis is wrong. However that is not to say that carbohydrates are not uniquely fattening via another mechanism, i.e. leptin resistance. Fructose and lectins (found in grains) for example have been found to be particularly prone to causing leptin resistance.

      

  22. after reading some articles on stephan guyenet’s website I have now come to the conclusion that the carbohydrate hypothesis is wrong. However that is not to say that carbohydrates are not uniquely fattening via another mechanism, i.e. leptin resistance. Fructose and lectins (found in grains) for example have been found to be particularly prone to causing leptin resistance.
    And the food reward signals of sugars and wheat (which breaks down into opioids) are also detrimental.
    furthermore, there is still significant evidence that hyperinsulinemia causes numerous health problems, even if obesity is not among them. For example hyperinsulinemia has been shown to calcify arteries and is atherogenic via a number of mechanisms.

      

    • If that were true, if carbohydrates were fattening and reducing them would solve the problems we should see a 100% success rate from those people eating a low carb or no grain or no fructose diet, this is the only way to empirically validate the “theory” because it’s not a theory that leave room for exceptions.

      And this is the problems: dozens of metabolic ward studies show no advantage of eating a low carb diet. No less insulin, no less appetite, no less fat gains. And the net is full, and we’re talking hundreds and hundreds of post of people failing with a low carb diet, expecially failing on one point: eating ad libitum and still getting fat and this is when they finally realize they need to count calories on a low carb diet and reduce calories. Then they discover that it’s not worth it anymore and a moderate everything diet works better when counting calories anyone.

      At this point there’s no scientific empirical proof that high carb diets make people fatter and low carb diet make people leaner and this is not compatible with whatever theory of a hunger/fat/hormone whatever advantage to a lower carb diet.

        

      • “dozens of metabolic ward studies show no advantage of eating a low carb diet”

        Links to abstracts or it didn’t happen.

        “At this point there’s no scientific empirical proof”
        … in your comment supporting any of your wild claims. You might want to fix that. Or to try, at least.

          

        • do you really believe that I need to post any study showing that low carb diet have no advantage over other diets when they have been all quoted by James here in this series of articles on insulin?

          Why are you here if you didn’t even read a word of what James wrote?

          And by the way the weight of the proof in not on me but on people like you making ridicolous claims because honestly it’s so ridicolous to even believe that reducing carbs without reducing calories could lead to lack of weight gain (i.e the most anti-survival mechanism a living body could possess) while believing calories determine whether we gain or not is the most logical and rational conclusion that it’s you that need a lot of serious empirical proof to even stand a chance of defending such a laughable belief not me.

            

          • “do you really believe that I need to post any study showing that low carb diet have no advantage”

            Absolutely, yes. The rest is noise and I didn’t even read your comment beyond this point.

              

          • I won’t repeat what James has already posted in this series that would be redundant as there’s nothing new under the sun.

            But again, hundreds and hundreds (you just need a google search for lowcarb forums) of real life anecdotes plus controlled studies show people need to consciously reduce calorie as a low carb diet didn’t forbidden them from getting used to fatty foods and overeating on them gaining fat, of course, in the process.

            Yes it works for some, it stops working after some time as they adapt to the new foods and it never worked for many. Consciosly reducing calories is still the only way but I’m happy for those few individuals who can really lose the extra pounds and maintain their weight simply by reducing carbs. This doesn’t work for the majority of the population.

              

          • You don’t need to repeat what he posted, just provide links to the articles where he (or anyone, really) referenced any studies that confirm your fantastic claim that low-carb diets don’t work. The present article is not a good source, as it deals with some rather technical issues about insulin and with the effects of dairy, which is decidedly NOT the same thing as comparing the effectiveness of low vs. high-carb diets.

            Show me the (way to the) anti-low-carb studies. It’s your job to do the work of driving your argument home, not mine. You haven’t provided a single link yet to confirm what you said about low-carb.

              

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