Dealing with doctors over your diabetes diet
They say 'You really need a high level of proof to
change the recommendations,' which is ironic because
they never had a high level of proof to set them.
DR WALTER WILLETT
Over the past few years all sorts of concerns have been raised about what are perceived as 'unhealthy' diets — the ones that don't conform to the tenets of 'healthy eating'. So let me put your mind at rest. In this chapter are answers to typical concerns that have been raised by doctors, nutritionists and sceptics of low-carbohydrate diets recently, to show how we are misinformed and misled.
This way of eating allows all foods — including carbs, fruits and vegetables — and, while carbs are restricted somewhat, there is no restriction on the total amount of food you can eat. That should be enough to stop anyone objecting to it. However, not only the public but nutritionists and doctors, too, have been so brainwashed over the past couple of decades that no doubt someone will.
The hardest ones to convince are the 'experts'. You will not be surprised to learn, therefore, that I am often asked how to deal with doctors. It really can get annoying after a while, can't it? So if you have the same problem, you may find it comforting to know that you're not alone. You might also like some ammunition with which to retaliate. Here it is:
Q: Won't eating more fat raise my cholesterol and triglycerides and increase my risk of heart disease?
A: No, quite the opposite. The whole vexed question of fatty diets, cholesterol and heart disease is a biggie. As this is the whole basis for cutting fats down in the first place, this website has a section devoted to it and links to more information.
Q: Will eating more protein increase my risk of heart disease?
A: No, quite the reverse! I should make clear that the way of eating recommended on this website is not high-protein, merely moderate or adequate protein. Having said that, however, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health answered this question when they studied 80,082 women aged between thirty-four and fifty-nine without any previous indication of heart disease.1 When all other risk factors for heart disease were controlled for, and irrespective of whether the women were on high- or low-fat diets, the results showed that both animal and vegetable proteins contributed to a lower risk of heart disease. The researchers concluded:
'Our data do not support the hypothesis that a high protein intake increases the risk of ischemic heart disease. In contrast, our findings suggest that replacing carbohydrates with protein may be associated with a lower risk of ischemic heart disease'.
Q: Will everyone's blood fats respond the same way to reducing carbohydrates and increasing protein and fat?
A: Why not? Although we do have slightly different reactions to different foodstuffs because of our different evolutionary backgrounds in different parts of the world, we are all one species and all designed to eat essentially the same foods. All the trials of low-carb diets, for over a century, have found dramatic benefits wherever, and on whom, they have been conducted. But if you are concerned about this, have a blood test before you begin this way of eating and another three or four months into it to reassure yourself.