On April 19, 2011 I started a low polyunsaturated fat (PUFA) diet. It is NOT a low carb diet, however my daily journal is on Jimmy Moore's Livin' La Vida Low Carb discussion forum.http://www.livinlowcarbdiscussion.com/showthread.php?tid=5972
I just recently added a Shangri-La Diet component and will be tweaking my diet with that.
My justifications for reducing PUFA include:
1. Researchers in Oregon wanted to study obesity in monkeys. How did they make monkeys obese? They added a peanut butter snack and a high fructose corn syrup sweetened punch (PUFAs and fructose) to their regular food.
2. Emergency malnutrition is treated in Africa with Plumpy Nut. What's in Plumpy Nut? Peanut paste, vegetable oil, powdered milk, powdered sugar, vitamins, and minerals (PUFAs and fructose).
3. Stephan Guyenet's Whole Health Source blog has a very telling chart showing the shocking increase in soy oil, shortening, and chicken consumption over the last 35 years as fat consumption DECREASED. Notably absent was a corresponding increase in consumption of sugars (PUFAs without increased fructose).
4. By the way, here is a quote by a famous author you may have heard of, "The obesity epidemic is unlikely to be due to larger portions. From 1976 to 1996, calorie intake at breakfast, lunch, and dinner increased little, if at all; rather, there was a big increase in snacking
." (The Shangri-La Diet by Seth Roberts; page 126) Potato and other snack chips are extreme sources of PUFA.
These lead me to believe (among other studies and data) that the PUFAs are the danger, not the fructose. The fattening effect, however, seems to work best when they are combined. There are also economic reasons to include high PUFA oils into snack food ingredients. Soy oil is relatively cheaper compared to olive or coconut oils. There is also the idea that polyunsaturated fats are "good" fats and are acceptable by consumers. And when a product produces obesity it would seem to be creating an increased demand for itself.
I discovered Seth Roberts while listening to a podcast with Stephan Guyenet. Seth's Shangri-La Diet sounded absurd...at first. But the more I thought about how flavor affects food choice, the more sense it made in the overall picture. I then realized that it isn't just flavors but also textures, colors, temperature, consistency, and the environment in which the foods are eaten all contribute to food choices.
PUFAs are almost impossible to not get enough of in our diet. Very little is actually needed. So it would not be prudent to try to eliminate them completely. It seems to me, quite likely, that almost all foods are okay if limited to some level. But this begs the question "What is wrong with the western diet?" I'm convinced Seth is on to something.
I may be wrong about PUFA. So for the last 6 weeks I have been eating a reduced PUFA diet of a variety of foods including low PUFA snack foods, HFCS sweetened soda pop, fast food burgers, etc. I document it all on my journal with my daily weight. I usually do not document quantities because I am not calorie restricting. My weight fluctuated upward and came back down to my starting weight on the day I added ELOO.
There are some additional things I would like to test for. Is unflavored gelatin effective by itself or combined with unflavored sugar and/or oil? Do certain flavors promote appetite suppression (i.e. curry powder)? Is the effect consistent when oil is taken in a gel cap? I also want to test the effectiveness of certain bland foods.
I do not subscribe to the idea of "ditto foods". It seems pretty obvious that there are cultures that do not over eat yet they subsist on staples that change very little day to day. Clearly some flavors do not promote over eating.
I do not subscribe to taking walnut oil or flax oil. Aside from their PUFA content, they do not seem like rational analogs of any historic dietary fats I'm aware of. I am also unaware of centenarians who consume high PUFA diets.
I do subscribe to the idea that I can be incorrect. I have seen evidence of it on many occasions.