Weight Loss University: Fish And Fat Loss

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A study published in the International Journal Of Obesity split 324 subjects into four diet groups: control, lean fish, fatty fish, and fish oil.

All four of the groups had the same macronutrient (protein, fats, carbs) and calorie breakdown.  On a side note, this was a pretty crummy diet, and all four groups lost weight.  Just goes to show that following ANY plan is better than following none.

The control group took sunflower seed oil capsules, and didn’t get any seafood.

The second group got cod (150g) three times a week.

The third group got salmon (150g) three times a week.

The fourth group took fish oil capsules, and didn’t get any seafood.

The average weight loss over the study was 14 pounds, and everyone who had ANY of the marine products: lean fish, fatty fish, or fish oil, lost an additional 2.2 pounds over 4 weeks.

Conclusion: If you’re following a diet, adding fish or fish oil will help you lose more weight :)

Here’s the citation:

Int J Obes (Lond). 2007 Oct;31(10):1560-6. Epub 2007 May 15.
Randomized trial of weight-loss-diets for young adults varying in fish and fish oil content.
Thorsdottir I, Tomasson H, Gunnarsdottir I, Gisladottir E, Kiely M, Parra MD, Bandarra NM, Schaafsma G, Martinéz JA. Unit for Nutrition Research, Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Landspitali University Hospital, University of Iceland, Eiriksgata-29, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland.

And this is a link to the abstract: Weight Loss For Young Adults Varying In Fish Content

10 Signs that your Diet Promotes Obsessive Compulsive Eating

Nutrition, Study, Weight Loss No Comments »

By Brad Pilon, MS

It was back on March 12 of 2007 that I first wrote about the now famous A to Z weight loss trial (you can see my original blog post here http://nutritionhelp.blogspot.com/2007/03/newest-diet-study-what-does-it-really.html).

In this ground breaking study, 311 overweight women were recruited to follow one of the following popular diet programs: The Atkins Diet, The Zone Diet, the LEARN diet or the Ornish Diet.

To start the study, each woman was given a copy of the popular diet book that she was randomly assigned to follow.

Then, to make sure she was an “expert” on her program before she started dieting, each woman attended a series of 8 classes (each lasting an hour) explaining exactly how to follow her assigned diet.

(Side note- This just shows how OCE these diets are considering that it takes EIGHT classes for these women to know how to properly follow each diet!)

After the courses were completed the women then set off to follow their assigned diet plan for a total of 1 year.

The results were pretty much exactly what I expected – everybody lost a lot of weight in the first two months, after that the diets tended to even out and by the end of the trial the weight loss was far from impressive – none of the groups averaged more than 10 pounds of weight loss after an entire year of dieting.

And while many people used this study to ‘prove’ that diets simply didn’t work, or that the body somehow adapted to dieting, my take was much simpler – Firstly, this trial is in agreement with most research that shows it is very hard to accurately measure how many calories a person eats in a day, and secondly I thought that these results showed that the number one reason diets fail is compliance.

In other words, the more complicated and the more rigid the diet is (or the more OCE it is), the more likely it is going to fail in the long term. – People just can’t stick to these types of diets for long periods of time.

Apparently I wasn’t alone with my analysis.

In a study published in the International Journal of Obesity titled “Dietary adherence and weight loss success among overweight women: results from the A to Z weight loss study” researchers re-examined the A to Z weight loss trial to see if there was an association between the level of compliance and the amount of weight that was lost.

Guess what they found?

Astonishingly only ONE subject in the ENTIRE study followed the diet as directed for the whole 12 months. This means that every other subject was not following her assigned diet properly at some point during the research trial!

The researchers also found that adherence was significantly correlated with 12-month weight change for all three-diet groups. So the better a woman was at following her diet, the more weight she lost.

The fact that adherence was so low is very interesting considering that these women spent eight class sessions reviewing their assigned diets with a registered dietitian before they even started the diet…you can imagine what adherence must be like for someone who simply bought one of those books, read it cover to cover and then gave it a try!

The findings from this follow-up analysis also suggest that the difference in dietary macronutrients had only negligible effects on the participants weight loss success.

The bottom line is that you can generally figure out how successful a diet will be by looking at how complicated it is.

More rules = more complicated = low chance of success

Less rules = less complicated = high chance of success

In my opinion weight loss can be incredibly simple if you let it.

Find the easiest, most comfortable way to reduce the total amount of calories that you eat. The less intrusive a diet is on your lifestyle the greater chance you have of sticking to it long term.

For me, this is flexible intermittent fasting. After all if you can fast for 24 hours once, you know you will always be able to do it. Some fasts maybe harder or easier than others, but you know you can do it!

Obsessive Compulsive Eating habits that make diets complicated and difficult spell doom for long term weight loss.

10 Signs a diet suffers from OCE:

1. It contains a list of foods you can and cannot eat

2. It lists specific times of every day that you are allowed or not allowed to eat

3. It contains specific diet plans that do not take into consideration your own personal food preferences

4. It lacks flexibility

5. It focuses on macronutrients and micronutrients excessively

6. If fails to point out the importance of long term compliance

7. It requires you to pre-pack and carry certain foods with you while you travel

8. It promotes certain foods because they PROMOTE weight loss

9. Over reliance of food Journal

10. Metabolic Typing

Brad Pilon is a nutrition professional with over eight years experience working in the nutritional supplement industry specializing in clinical research management and new product development. Brad has completed graduate studies in nutritional sciences specializing in the use of short term fasting for weight loss.

His trademarked book Eat Stop Eat has been featured on national television and helped thousands of men and women around the world lose fat without sacrificing the foods they love. For more information on Eat Stop Eat, visit www.eatstopeat.com

Survey Says…. Soy Is BAD NEWS!!

Health, Nutrition, Study 2 Comments »

I’m writing a post about the evils of soy and don’t want to clutter it up with a bunch of study references.  So if you want to know more, check out www.pubmed.com and take a look at these studies!

(I’m using several of these in my next nutrition seminar, so stay tuned!)

Breinholt V, et al. “Estrogenic activity of flavonoids in mice. The importance of estrogen receptor distribution, metabolism and bioavailability.” Food Chem Toxicol 2000 Jul;38(7):555-64

Casanova M, et al. “Developmental effects of dietary phytoestrogens in Sprague-Dawley rats and interactions of genistein and daidzein with rat estrogen receptors alpha and beta in vitro.” Toxicol Sci 1999 Oct;51(2):236-44

Stahl S, et al. “Phytoestrogens act as estrogen agonists in an estrogen-responsive pituitary cell line.” Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 1998 Sep;152(1):41-8

Zhong, et al. “Effects of dietary supplement of soy protein isolate and low fat diet on prostate cancer.” FASEB J 2000;14(4):a531.11

Nagata C, et al. “Inverse association of soy product intake with serum androgen and estrogen concentrations in Japanese men.” Nutr Cancer 2000;36(1):14-8.

Habito RC, et al. “Effects of replacing meat with soyabean in the diet on sex hormone concentrations in healthy adult males.” Br J Nutr 2000 Oct;84(4):557-63

Strauss L, et al. “Genistein exerts estrogen-like effects in male mouse reproductive tract.” Mol Cell Endocrinol 1998 Sep 25;144(1-2):83-93

Santell RC, et al. “Dietary genistein exerts estrogenic effects upon the uterus, mammary gland and the hypothalamic/pituitary axis in rats.” J Nutr 1997 Feb;127(2):263-9

Harrison RM, et al. “Effect of genistein on steroid hormone production in the pregnant rhesus monkey.” Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1999 Oct;222(1):78-84

Zand RS, et al. “Steroid hormone activity of flavonoids and related compounds.” Breast Cancer Res Treat 2000 Jul;62(1):35-49

Nagel SC, et al. “The effective free fraction of estradiol and xenoestrogens in human serum measured by whole cell uptake assays: physiology of delivery modifies estrogenic activity.” Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1998 Mar;217(3):300-9

Aukema HM, Housini I. “Dietary soy protein effects on disease and IGF-1 in male and female Han:SPDR-cy rats.” Kidney Int 2001 Jan;59(1):52-61

Klein M, et al. “Energy metabolism and thyroid hormone levels of growing rats in response to different dietary proteins?soy or casein.” Arch Tierernahr 2000;53(2):99-125.

Flynn KM, et al. “Effects of genistein exposure on sexually dimorphic behaviors in rats.” Toxicol Sci 2000 Jun;55(2):311-9

Atanassova N, et al. “Comparative effects of neonatal exposure of male rats to potent and weak (environmental) estrogens on spermatogenesis at puberty and the relationship to adult testis size and fertility: evidence for stimulatory effects of low estrogen levels.” Endocrinology 2000 Oct;141(10):3898-907

Whitten PL, et al. “Phytoestrogen influences on the development of behavior and gonadotropin function.” Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1995 Jan;208(1):82-6

Kumi-Diaka J, et al. “Cytotoxic potential of the phytochemical genistein isoflavone (4′,5′,7-trihydroxyisoflavone) and certain environmental chemical compounds on testicular cells.” Biol Cell 1999 Sep;91(7):515-23

Ashton E, Ball M. “Effects of soy as tofu vs meat on lipoprotein concentrations.” Eur J Clin Nutr 2000 Jan;54(1):14-9

Madani S, et al. “Dietary protein level and origin (casein and highly purified soybean protein) affect hepatic storage, plasma lipid transport, and antioxidative defense status in the rat.” Nutrition 2000 May;16(5):368-75.

Risbridger G, et al. “Evidence that epithelial and mesenchymal estrogen receptor-alpha mediates effects of estrogen on prostatic epithelium.” Dev Biol 2001 Jan 15;229(2):432-442

Schadereit R, et al. “Whole body protein turnover of growing rats in response to different dietary proteins?soy protein or casein.” Arch Tierernahr 1999;52(4):311-21

Ji S, et al. “Soybean isoflavones, genistein and genistin, inhibit rat myoblast proliferation, fusion and myotube protein synthesis.” J Nutr 1999 Jul;129(7):1291-7

Keung WM. “Dietary estrogenic isoflavones are potent inhibitors of beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase of P. testosteronii.” Biochem Biophys Res Commun 1995 Oct 24;215(3):1137-44

Study: Obesity More Dangerous Than Drinking Or Smoking?

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A study published in Health Affairs compared the effects of obesity, smoking, and drinking on medical problems and costs.

Cigarettes and alcohol are thought of as “more evil” than simply being heavy, but what does the data say?

From the study: “Obesity has roughly the same association with chronic health conditions as does twenty years’ aging; this greatly exceeds the associations of smoking or problem drinking.”

Compared to normal weight individuals who don’t drink or smoke, here are some stats:

  • Obesity is associated with a 36 percent increase in inpatient and outpatient spending and a 77 percent increase in medications
  • current smokers have a 21 percent increase in inpatient and outpatient spending and a 28 percent increase in medications
  • And then slightly smaller effects for problem drinkers

The author concluded that if you’re obese, then you have the health of someone TWENTY years older than you. So if you’re a 55 year old obese individual, you actually have the body of a 75 year old. (And definitely not a fit and healthy 75 year old!)

So being obese is worse for your health than smoking, and smoking is worse for your health than drinking.

For best results, quit all 3 :)

Here’s the study reference: Health Affairs, March 2002 vol. 21 no. 2 245-253.