31
Aug
10

Fuel for the metabolic fire

LabRat has an outstanding post up today:

It is, essentially, a primer on food metabolism — what the body does with the stuff you shovel into your pie-hole.  And it is excellent.

There’s a lot of dubious, misleading, or simply wrong nutrition advice out there.  Some of it is malicious — or at least intentionally skewed towards the interests of whoever’s providing the funding — but most of it is simply parochial or obsolete.  LabRat explains:

[H]owever much I wind up making snarky asides about nutrition as a scientific field and how profoundly political and murky it is, I have a great deal of sympathy for nutritionists. They are working in a byzantinely multivariable field in which it is nearly to completely impossible to properly isolate and control for almost all of those variables; they’re not so much stuck looking for needles in a haystack as they are stuck with evaluating to which degree each and every straw in the haystack is a load-bearing straw. Not easy, and it’s no surprise we get so many frustrating cases of completely honest and dedicated researchers coming to opposite conclusions based on the same data sets– because those multiple variables can turn the data sets into Rorschach blots.

The best way I’ve found to start to untangle the haystack is by looking for mechanisms rather than — necessarily — correlations.  If a particular metabolic or endocrine mechanism is (relatively) uncontroversial and happens to explain a point of nutritional contention, my confidence increases.  (Insulin, blood glucose, and carbohydrate uptake is a good example.)  This works for me because I’m a nerd: when I don’t understand something, I study it and try to systematize it.  Your mileage, of course, may vary.

Advertisements

1 Response to “Fuel for the metabolic fire”


  1. September 1, 2010 at 12:15

    The best way I’ve found to start to untangle the haystack is by looking for mechanisms rather than — necessarily — correlations…. This works for me because I’m a nerd: when I don’t understand something, I study it and try to systematize it.

    This is exactly what I was trying to do. Thank you.


Leave a reply; use raw HTML for markup. Please blockquote quotations from the post or other comments.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


anarchocapitalist agitprop

Be advised

I say fuck a lot

Categories

Archives

Statistics FTW


%d bloggers like this: