Spent the weekend catching up on my reading. I went through about a month’s worth of hard copies of all the papers and magazines I subscribe to. They’ve been stacking up and MD has been leaning on me hard to go through the ever-growing pile Plus I did a little catching up on the internet as well. I’ll provided a number of links for your enjoyment and edification along with my commentary.
Here’s an article from the New York Times from three weeks ago about how they’ve quit using trans fats at the Great Indiana State Fair. We can stick this one in the What’s the Point? file. According to the article, one Ryan Howell claims as a “slice of heaven” his Combo Plate, which

consists of one battered Snickers bar, two battered Oreos and a battered Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup…

The good news is that this dog’s breakfast of carbs and trans fats is not actually deep fried in trans fats as well. I guess we can all thank God for that.
The great and powerful Mayo Clinic puts out an absolutely idiotic podcast on the virtues of eating margarine instead of butter. Thankfully there is a transcript so that you don’t have to listen to the entire podcast, or even any of it. I tried to listen to it but the dietitian’s voice drove me crazy. If I had been forced to listen to the whole thing I would probably have put a bullet in my head. But whether you read or listen, you can see what kind of nutritional clap trap one the famous medical institutions in America is espousing.
Then you can clink over onto G333k and find the 8 easy steps a geek follows to lose fat. Compare the geek to the Mayo Clinic. Then tell me who would you rather turn to for your nutritional advice.
Regina Wilshire links to interviews by Jimmy Moore and Dr. Jay Wortman with Gary Taubes about his new book Good Calories, Bad Calories. I’ll be posting my own interview with him before his book becomes available in about two weeks.
Amy Tenderich asks the age-old question: Why did God make carbs so yummy? I can only say that I’m glad he made steak even yummier.
I’m glad to see that trainers have the same kind of conversations with their clients that I do with my patients. Here Fred Hahn deals with a situation I’ve dealt with all too often.
And, finally, here is an enlightening post showing what to do when the good Samaritan shows up to help you when your cash card gets stuck in the ATM.


  1. Thanks for the ATM theft photo link. I knew about this scheme enough to be cautious about looking for altered card slots, but hadn’t seen the exact mechanism for holding the card hostage.
    But oh gawd, you had to link to the G333k post and I *had* to read it *and* the comments, some of which were incredibly stupid, I mean for geeks and all. So I couldn’t help myself and *had* to spend too much time informing them of the errors of their carb-addled ways instead of researching our trip to Tuscany next year (for the low carb food!) or reading my newest book purchase, Joel Salatin’s Everything I Want to Do is Illegal: War Stories from the Local Food Front. I think you would like it (now that your reading stack is dimished 😉 as Joel has a particular dislike for government intervention.
    Hi Anna–
    I suppose I ought to get a couple of Joel’s books, but my book dance card is so filled right now that I don’t know when I would get to it.
    Thanks for taking the geeks in hand – I’m sure it was just what they needed.

  2. After reading the Taubes’ interview, and listening to the podcast, I am more excited than ever about the book launch. We who have known this stuff for some time now, may not be as excited as we ought to be. It occurs to me that this is one of those rare sometimes-not-even-once-in-a-lifetime science moments – when something comes along to completely throw over “conventional wisdom”. It will be fun to watch Schopenhauer’s observation unfold: “All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.
    We may see a jump straight to “violently opposed”. And the “self-evident” will be a long time coming, I’m afraid. But we HAVE to reason our way through all this ( what is proper nutrition for man? ) because as I wrote in an earlier comment ( and you agreed), natural selection will not be bailing us out.
    And I’m not looking forward to paying the Baby Boomers medical bills, either.
    Yeah, the radio interview is great. It shows you how much nutritional BS there is out there when it takes a trained, very smart, science journalist 8 years to cut through it.
    The book is wonderful. I’m eager to see what kind of impact it makes.

  3. Wow, a smorgasbord:
    1- Transfat free state fair feels like deck chairs and a certain ship that they made a movie about. You know, the one that grossed $1.8Billion dollars worldwide, and one of my coworkers claims the success of which was due to scheduling (that $1.8B is a record, still unbroken despite escalating ticket prices).
    2- Carbs = Yummy? No, fat = yummy. Carbs give structure (course, the sugar ain’t bad either). For my money, good beef, done excellently is as good as it gets. Good pork done expertly is second (a wee bit of carb goes a long way here).
    3- If every trainer had a nickel for every time they had Fred Hanh’s conversation, they’d all be richer than Oprah. You too. probably.
    4- Was warned of the ATM card capture prior to trip to Italy. Seems it’s been rampant there. Who’s bank let’s them pull $4000 in a single day through an ATM, I dunno. I suspect that’s a typo. But still, could be a couple days before you get around to canceling it. TG for cell phones. I’d call the bank from the bank, before the samaritan even showed. Last thing: Samaritans. The Good Samaritan is a Bible story about the one person from Samara who was kind to JC, making him a notable exception to all other Samaritans, who were, apparently, the Bible’s closest approximation to a nation of jerks. So, when we talk of Samaritans and Good Samaritans, we should be talking about very different things. Modern use is funny, since they are used interchangeably.

  4. Not only did I see it, I’m going to post on it at some point. This isn’t the only surprising thing discovered about statins. These drugs have also been implicated in ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease. They are best avoided.
    Regarding that part of the article where the researcher seemed excited at the possibilities of statin “futures”, the thing that jumped out at me ( a lay person) , was the implication that perhaps a diet that prevented the need for statins in the first place, would very likely have the same positive effects that the statins supposedly promise, and without the side-effects. But then, I’m just a lay person.
    Hey John–
    Good pickup. Our partner, Dr. Larry McCleary, a neurosurgeon has written a great book on this very thing. Should be available in just a few days. I’ll report on it when it is.

  5. Don’t know if you noticed, but the podcast about butter vs. margarine had a “sponsored by AstraZeneca” notice on it. Figures!
    Hi Anne–
    Yes, I noticed. Thanks for pointing it out. I intended to mention it in the post, but in my haste to get finished so I could leave I forgot. The irony is delicious.

  6. Loved the Geek link. One question, though. What was the thinking behind this statement:
    “Unlike models, don’t drop carbs entirely or you will have serious issues at 50.”
    I haven’t a clue. You’d better ask the Geek.

  7. Would like to follow up a little on the comment by Max above, addressing his biblical illiteracy concerning the mention of Samaritans in the New Testament, not in a spirit of attack, but only to correct inaccuracies for the sake of being accurate in one’s attempts to educate others.
    Samaria, situated between Galilee and Judea, at the time of Christ was inhabited by a people who were descended from both Israelites and foreigners. The Samaritans practiced a form of Judaism considered heterodox by the Jews to whom Jesus preached, so any mention of them, and especially praise of them, would cause Jesus’ Jewish listeners, especially those in authority, to bristle with indignation. Samaritans are mentioned three times that I can think of in the Gospels: 1) in the cure of the ten lepers, it is a Samaritan who alone of the ten comes back to thank Jesus for his cleansing; 2) the meeting with the Samaritan woman at the well who gives Jesus water; and 3) the parable of the Good Samaritan, in which Jesus recounts a tale about a Samaritan who best exemplifies the living out of the second greatest commandment to love one’s neighbor as oneself. Our phrase “good Samaritan,” referring to a person who helps out someone is need, alludes to this parable. (Max was confusing instances 2 and 3.) The introduction of Samaritan characters in the Gospel narratives served as a warning to the Jews that they, despite being the chosen people, often failed to serve God as faithfully as they should know how to do, and that those whom they considered inferior in fact understood the heart of their faith better than they despite not adhering to its letter. I know this has nothing to do with nutrition, but biblical knowledge is to the soul as nutritional knowledge is to the body, so I had to speak up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *