13

votes

Is anybody else frustrated with Dr Cordain and Dr Lustig?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 15, 2011 at 2:43 PM

This is probably not the smartest topic for my first question but...

I recently came across this video from a 5 part special where a CBS San Francisco reporter tracked her amazing results by going Paleo over the course of several weeks. Its a great story and here is the link if you haven't seen it yet. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84lkNik9pE4&feature=youtube_gdata_player

I was so excited watching the video since I thought this was the perfect video to motivate close friends and family members to give a Paleo diet a shot. But that excitement quickly dwindled when Dr. Cordain and Dr Lustig came on as the experts to talk about the benefits and drawbacks of Paleo.

The video reminded me of every other health related video Ive ever seen where overweight doctors tell overweight Americans how to live their lives.

Is anybody else frustrated by the fact that two of the biggest figureheads in the Paleo movement dont appear to be following their own advice? I respect both individuals very much so I don't want to take anything away from their work, but it just annoys me when there doesn't appear to be any personal accountability.

I also hated the comment that Dr. Lustig made about Paleo not being possible for everyone to do on a large scale. All that comment does is discourage people who may be on the fence about going Paleo, from ever giving it a try in the first place.

Do my frustrations have merit or am I completely out of line?

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 27, 2011
at 01:09 AM

But the two men who are the subject of the question appear to be no more than a little overweight. I used BMI as a short-hand, to convey the idea that a little fat on the middle-aged is not necessarily unhealthy. Is your view that they are too obese to survive surgery? If that were true, they would of course be a poor advertisement for paleo (or whatever). But of course it is not true. BMI may be a poor indicator of body-fat but it is undeniable that (a)a low enough BMI is strongly associated with death; and (b)over time sufficient starvation will cause (i)a low BMI and (ii)death.

E6bb4d8b5c6853dbc88d4c243874dc75

(30)

on November 19, 2011
at 09:33 AM

I totally agree that these two gentlemen, for their age, are perfectly acceptable specimens in terms of weight, especially to those of us upward of 60. (My own weight is perfectly normal,BMI of 23.) But I've also read that a little extra weight as we age is actually a good thing. So in my own never-to-be-humble opinion, I think these two men look just fine. Yes, they could probably stand to lose a little weight, but to me they look perfectly fine and their weight does not detract from their credibility.

E9008f422476aa0ffd18487fe09fc218

(120)

on November 16, 2011
at 11:48 PM

How about this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Obesity-waist_circumference.PNG The next question to ask is how is obesity defined? The BMI is basically a made up statistic. According to it's measure a 6 foot 3 250 pound NFL linebacker is obese.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 16, 2011
at 10:49 PM

What is considered obese these days? Because im not so sure neither one of them are. I feel like our standards have diminished so much over the years that as long as you can fit in an airline seat, then you are not considered obese.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on November 16, 2011
at 04:21 AM

Thing about activity is that you can do a very small volume of very high intensity activity and have the greatest amount of benefit (muscle mass, mitochondrial biogenesis etc.) that will make a huge difference compared to a sedentary person eating an identical diet.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:59 AM

The converse......looks like tarzan but plays like jane.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:58 AM

Excellent analogy.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:57 AM

Neil barzai supercentanarians all have pretty avg body comp.......but very interesting associative finding on their longevity based upon what genes they expressed now....

F5f742cc9228eb5804114d0f3be4e587

(7660)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:38 AM

I don't mean to blow holes in your theory about age and weight loss, but have you seen The Unconquerable Dave? http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-unconquerable-dave/ I'm not sure age has much to do with it. I know young 'uns who are having issues losing weight. I think there are differences in the underlying foundation of health no matter what age someone may be.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:05 AM

A pretty low activity level. That's part of the shtick. But he usually says that in response to those who are doing 6 45-minute high-level aerobic sessions a week. But I assume he's still doing a lot of his "move around a lot at a moderate pace," and I think that's right up your alley, Travis.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on November 16, 2011
at 02:01 AM

Isn't Cordain a professor of "exercise science"? Reminds me of my nutrition professors who ate junk food all day.

Medium avatar

(19469)

on November 15, 2011
at 10:19 PM

Mark was super lean and ripped even when his diet was SAD and his exercise was "chronic". I do think that people are swayed too much by the physique of the messenger when we should be focused on the message. Obviously, if someone is obese, that is going to hurt their credibility, but Robb Wolf having what is likely a very healthy/normal amount of bodyfat has nothing to do with the validity of his ideas.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:39 PM

What activity level does he currently say he has?

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:24 PM

So you don't believe Mark's self reported activity levels?

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:23 PM

"you can sell anything with a 6-pack" is the ultimate bottom line here!

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:51 PM

Nance, I have to confess that I am an older (though not obese any more) person and I admit I probably am looking at them with different eyes!

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:48 PM

I entirely agree that older obese people have the most to gain. I'm just not sure that these two are sufficiently overweight to be unhealthy - they may be reasonable role models for older people. But not very appealing role models for people, say, in their 20s.

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:43 PM

Hi Alexandra, The association is epidemiological, a statistical correlation, and has not gone away (shrunk); you are saying that you can explain the association, which is not the same thing as saying that it doesn't exist. If your contradictory data are also epidemiological, they don't refute or prove your point or mine: you need controlled experiments to do that. Ethical problems with that! Of course a sufficiently low BMI is always associated with death. Final point: clinician friends see in practice that elderly people with a bit of fat on them survive cancer better than thin ones.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:40 PM

If only I could get my BMI low enough for you to worry about my mortality! :-))

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:26 PM

VERY well said! We're so used to marketing techniques that when someone stands in front of us and gives earnest opinions and advice we expect them to look like the other performers/actors we watch all the time. And you're absolutely right that weight loss really shouldn't be the primary selling point of paleo. Use me as an example--it's very nice that I've lost 30 pounds but the important benefit is that I now feel great every day. Yes, I'd like to lose about 40 more but if I never lose another pound and continue to feel this good I'll say primal/paleo/ancestral is terrific.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:22 PM

Older obese people will look at these guys with different eyes, probably thinking "If only I could get my weight that good!"

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:20 PM

Some of you talked around it, but let me say bluntly patterns formed through 30 or 40 or 50 years of eating are NOT easily transformed. It's more likely you'll have hills and valleys, great times and slumps. Neither of these guys are 20-somethings and struggling with their weight doesn't mean their advice is wrong. It just means they are swimming upstream.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:19 PM

Some of you talked around it, but let me say bluntly 30 or 40 or 50 years of eating is NOT easily transformed. It's more likely you'll have hills and valleys, great times and slumps. Neither of these guys are 20-somethings and struggling with their weight doesn't mean their advice is wrong. It just means they are swimming upstream.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:15 PM

If someone has information that might benefit my ongoing health and they're willing to share, I appreciate them regardless of how "perfect" they look on video. Each individual will face self-destructive impulses in one way or another throughout life and, honestly, having a few pounds (not 10 or 20) around your waist is not the worst thing likely to happen by the time you have gray hair. :-))

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:16 PM

Plus one Dorado

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:16 PM

DeVany is the best front man but he does not seem to interested in leading any tribe. He also has a wealth of experience and knowledge of this life style. I would hope he thinks about this angle.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:39 PM

And the road goes ever on. I suspect that Cordain, Lustig and Taubes are traveling too much by car.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:35 PM

It's older obese people that have the most to gain, and who have the biggest impact on health care costs. Getting to normal BMI has a huge impact on diabetes and CV health.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:31 PM

They weren't shining stars of lean body mass, for sure. My biggest problem with the video was the emphasis on fiber.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:29 PM

The results speak for themselves. But paleo needs an Oppenheimer as spokesman. The current ones are too narrowly focused and fractious, maybe too egotistical.

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on November 15, 2011
at 05:19 PM

If paleo adherents don't stack up much better in general -- as a group, not with individuals with who knows what other concerns that may actually be outliers -- then perhaps it should get thrown into the same category with every other fad diet. Of course, perhaps there's a lot more to it than diet ... a la sleep, stress, etc.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 05:06 PM

Andrew, you're right about the progression. Which still leaves open whether Cordain & Lustig (and others) are actually following their advocated diet and progressing in the wrong direction, or not following it. Neither makes for credibility, right? I'd like to know. Because if it's the latter then it still makes the advocated lifestyle good/beneficial. If it's the former ... it brings the wisdom into question.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 05:03 PM

That's a really interesting observation Melissa ... how true! @AsianGrok, I'm not sure that's true. Most women are pretty aware of their weight problems and open with them, but if the responses to certain suggestions are any indication, more are perhaps offended by the suggestions of what to do about it.

B36613e945134be5813e6526f9a3a86c

(499)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:15 PM

Or possibly weight is not the perfect indicator of health that the CW holds it up to be? Nah, couldn't be...

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:11 PM

interesting point Melissa. girls are very afraid of opening up and saying they have a weight problem, even denying it when its dead obvious they have serious metabolic derangements. guys will flat out come out and say, im a fat ass, what can i do. everyone will help them.

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:04 PM

i started paleo at 21...oh god so much pressure now :P

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:03 PM

i agree with Evelyn. but Lustig isn't a lifestyle guru is he, i mean he's a conventional MD who simply studies pediatric endocrinology. Outside of avoiding colas, he probably doesn't do anything too special.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on November 15, 2011
at 03:45 PM

I doubt cbs would call up Laura or Dana for a show like this. for some reason men can talk about weight loss with a paunch, but not women.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 15, 2011
at 03:42 PM

That is a really good point and something that I did consider. Most of it is just speculation and all I really have to go by with these two individuals is past photos/videos of them. When I compare them to other people their age on the SAD, or even compare them to themselves from just a few years earlier, their physical appearance seems to be declining at a rate that looks like every other person in America. The examples you gave seem to be overweight people that have been struggling to make progress where the example of Cordain and Lustig seem to be steady progress in the opposite direction.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 15, 2011
at 03:30 PM

As a 25 yr old who's never been too significantly overweight(no more than 20 lbs), those thoughts did cross my mind. I just don't want to see Paleo get thrown into the same category with every other fad diet because its biggest supporters are not leading by example.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 15, 2011
at 03:20 PM

couldn't agree more Evelyn. I think the best trainers and coaches typically have their athletes working at such a high level that you don't assume that they would be doing the same themselves. But someone focusing on lifestyle aspects should surely be living out the majority of those lifestyle aspects in their own lives.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 03:16 PM

I agree somewhat here ... the later the intervention, the less improvement is to be expected I suppose. I compare them to others their age, however, and they're not stacking up much better in general.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 03:12 PM

I do think there's a difference between a trainer and someone proffering diet/lifestyle advice for "normal" people. Trainers and coaches often have far less ability than their charges, but they know what those folks need to do to maximize their potential. The lifestyle gurus, OTOH, presumably want to be healthy and have as much potential to do so as everyone else. Therefore when they lecture others but don't appear to be following their own advice it detracts from their credibility.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on November 15, 2011
at 02:50 PM

haven't seen it but I can't help but share your frustration when overweight doctors and trainers instruct others how to eat and live well. I don't think our frustration is totally legit, though - there are certainly trainers who have trained so many people and lived long enough where they don't need to live it to teach it but generally speaking fat doctors telling people how to live well is a symptom of our society's silliness.

Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

18 Answers

best answer

13
7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on November 15, 2011
at 02:55 PM

Not sure I would call Lustig one of the "biggest figureheads in the Paleo movement." Yes, he was at AHS11 and yes, lots of us are intrigued by his research. My guess is his appearance on the CBS series was largely because he was local.

That said, I'm also not sure that I would leap to the assumptions that their appearance today is a good or bad reflection on paleo per se. Unlike some of you younger whippersnappers who can take/have taken up paleo in your teens or twenties, those of us taking it up much later in life may have hurdles you don't have. Or maybe it's that academics don't have the time to go hauling their Range Rovers around like Art DeVany!

But I do think you're probably right that the paleo community would benefit from a short-ish video that folks could share with family and friends. Seems like there's lots of folks who could do this or maybe we could make it a project for AHS12!

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:16 PM

DeVany is the best front man but he does not seem to interested in leading any tribe. He also has a wealth of experience and knowledge of this life style. I would hope he thinks about this angle.

F5f742cc9228eb5804114d0f3be4e587

(7660)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:38 AM

I don't mean to blow holes in your theory about age and weight loss, but have you seen The Unconquerable Dave? http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-unconquerable-dave/ I'm not sure age has much to do with it. I know young 'uns who are having issues losing weight. I think there are differences in the underlying foundation of health no matter what age someone may be.

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:04 PM

i started paleo at 21...oh god so much pressure now :P

B36613e945134be5813e6526f9a3a86c

(499)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:15 PM

Or possibly weight is not the perfect indicator of health that the CW holds it up to be? Nah, couldn't be...

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on November 15, 2011
at 05:19 PM

If paleo adherents don't stack up much better in general -- as a group, not with individuals with who knows what other concerns that may actually be outliers -- then perhaps it should get thrown into the same category with every other fad diet. Of course, perhaps there's a lot more to it than diet ... a la sleep, stress, etc.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 03:16 PM

I agree somewhat here ... the later the intervention, the less improvement is to be expected I suppose. I compare them to others their age, however, and they're not stacking up much better in general.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 15, 2011
at 03:30 PM

As a 25 yr old who's never been too significantly overweight(no more than 20 lbs), those thoughts did cross my mind. I just don't want to see Paleo get thrown into the same category with every other fad diet because its biggest supporters are not leading by example.

12
Medium avatar

on November 15, 2011
at 05:50 PM

I don't mind if I take some heat for this, but watching the videos and looking at the pictures from AHS surprised me in that everyone just looked kinda normal. Aside from Stephan and Staffan (ahem), and of course Mark, nobody really stood out. Stephan and Mark have probably had the same BF% with every diet they have ever eaten though. Mark Advocates a high fat intake but he also earns it with a high activity level. It's an important point. Honestly, I would attribute what I observe/d to the prevalence of high-fat eating in the paleo community that is unhinged from activity level. Adipocyte management is a really straightforward process of mobilization, transport and oxidation that has to be balanced with storage. A lot of people are skeptical about dietary fat being stored in adipocytes. Blows my mind every time I read it. Some people can find that intersection point between fat intake, satiety and fat oxidation and end up relatively lean without activity. Lots and lots of people can't however.

As far as Lustig goes, supraphysiological doses of fructose are indeed bad but removing all fructose from one's diet doesn't magically result in total leanness. If that's all he personally does, I wouldn't expect him to be lean. If Cordain is really busy without being really active I could see that accounting for it. I'd be really surprised if he could gain much fat eating what he advocated in the first edition of his book though unless he's totally sedentary.

It'd be a bit like if you attended a conference on muscle hypertrophy and I was up there giving a lecture. You'd be wondering why the hell you should listen to some scrawny guy. If he knew everything about hypertrophy wouldn't he have at least gained some amount of noticeable muscle? Or if I was at a baldness reversal symposium. No really, guys, I used to be a lot balder than this...listen to what I have to say! Paleo isn't all about weight loss, but let's face it, it's what hooks people initially in many cases.

The sad fact is that you can't really sell diets without being lean. A sadder fact I suppose is that you can sell anything with a 6-pack.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on November 16, 2011
at 04:21 AM

Thing about activity is that you can do a very small volume of very high intensity activity and have the greatest amount of benefit (muscle mass, mitochondrial biogenesis etc.) that will make a huge difference compared to a sedentary person eating an identical diet.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:05 AM

A pretty low activity level. That's part of the shtick. But he usually says that in response to those who are doing 6 45-minute high-level aerobic sessions a week. But I assume he's still doing a lot of his "move around a lot at a moderate pace," and I think that's right up your alley, Travis.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:24 PM

So you don't believe Mark's self reported activity levels?

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on November 16, 2011
at 02:01 AM

Isn't Cordain a professor of "exercise science"? Reminds me of my nutrition professors who ate junk food all day.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:26 PM

VERY well said! We're so used to marketing techniques that when someone stands in front of us and gives earnest opinions and advice we expect them to look like the other performers/actors we watch all the time. And you're absolutely right that weight loss really shouldn't be the primary selling point of paleo. Use me as an example--it's very nice that I've lost 30 pounds but the important benefit is that I now feel great every day. Yes, I'd like to lose about 40 more but if I never lose another pound and continue to feel this good I'll say primal/paleo/ancestral is terrific.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:23 PM

"you can sell anything with a 6-pack" is the ultimate bottom line here!

Medium avatar

(39831)

on November 15, 2011
at 09:39 PM

What activity level does he currently say he has?

12
Medium avatar

on November 15, 2011
at 05:06 PM

Different versions of this same question get applied to other paleo/primal luminaries. Saw a photo of Robb Wolf, whose sweater looked a bit bunched around his waist, with some online commentator asking, "OMG, does Robb have a stomach?" ("Has he put on weight") And how did Mark Sisson recently respond to a critic who claimed Mark has gotten "out of shape"? Mark posted on one his signature shirtless photos, with the day's newspaper to prove currency. (Mark in fact turned out to be his usual lean, toned, healthy looking self.)

I confess I felt a bit sad that Mark felt that necessary. In the sense that we all know what it's like to know the right thing to do, the right what to live, the right choices to make ... And we all also know how difficult it can be to practice skillfully, effectively, over time. That's to say: If either Robb or Mark ends up adding a few more pounds than they may want, that would have no bearing on my views toward their books or their life works overall.

Many people use the phrase "walk your talk" solely as an accusation of failing to do so, as if the failure could only be willful, hence hypocrisy gets invoked.

Suppose we agree to acknowledge that Cordain, Lustig, Wolf, and Sisson, are all on "the path"?

And also acknowledge Antonio Machado's wise words: "We make the path by walking."

If on the other hand, you happen to be perfect, you get to be exempt from this exercise.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:15 PM

If someone has information that might benefit my ongoing health and they're willing to share, I appreciate them regardless of how "perfect" they look on video. Each individual will face self-destructive impulses in one way or another throughout life and, honestly, having a few pounds (not 10 or 20) around your waist is not the worst thing likely to happen by the time you have gray hair. :-))

Medium avatar

(10611)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:39 PM

And the road goes ever on. I suspect that Cordain, Lustig and Taubes are traveling too much by car.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:16 PM

Plus one Dorado

Medium avatar

(19469)

on November 15, 2011
at 10:19 PM

Mark was super lean and ripped even when his diet was SAD and his exercise was "chronic". I do think that people are swayed too much by the physique of the messenger when we should be focused on the message. Obviously, if someone is obese, that is going to hurt their credibility, but Robb Wolf having what is likely a very healthy/normal amount of bodyfat has nothing to do with the validity of his ideas.

7
F44b15b2fd1ad134200793d6b474fc4c

(938)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:39 PM

Another way to look at this is to say, "I wonder how much more overweight they'd be if they didn't eat paleo!"

4
E167c0387a5f0b87bb1f2c3e6aec73a8

(1240)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:24 PM

watched that video and it Looks like Lusting head is about to explode, please somebody get him a Gatorade pronto!

4
7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on November 15, 2011
at 03:59 PM

They get somewhat of a pass on their appearance because they are professional researchers and to a degree they are saying ???based upon my research, I advise this??????

I think their appearance is another example though that losing weight can be a lot more complex issue than what it is often made out to be by diet books.

4
E9008f422476aa0ffd18487fe09fc218

(120)

on November 15, 2011
at 03:51 PM

While neither Dr. Cordain nor Dr. Lustig are whipcord lean, neither is obese. Plus, both must be in their late 50s or early 60s at least. While they may not be the best examples, they are far, far, far from the fattest medical doctors or academics I've seen.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 16, 2011
at 10:49 PM

What is considered obese these days? Because im not so sure neither one of them are. I feel like our standards have diminished so much over the years that as long as you can fit in an airline seat, then you are not considered obese.

E9008f422476aa0ffd18487fe09fc218

(120)

on November 16, 2011
at 11:48 PM

How about this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Obesity-waist_circumference.PNG The next question to ask is how is obesity defined? The BMI is basically a made up statistic. According to it's measure a 6 foot 3 250 pound NFL linebacker is obese.

3
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on November 15, 2011
at 03:15 PM

I give Lustig a pass - he isn't really advocating paleo. He just says "frooktoz iz teh ebilz". That's fine by me.

Yes, it's annoying that Cordain gets to be the front man for paleo/cave man diet to the media, simply because he wrote the book. Hopefully, people will google around enough to realize that his word is not the last word on paleo.

2
27361737e33ba2f73ab3c25d2699ad61

(1880)

on November 15, 2011
at 06:38 PM

Hi Panteleimon,

I don't agree that low BMI is "clearly" associationed with higher mortality. Studies on this are conflicting and the recent bruhaha about lower bmi in women 15% to 18% as well as 18% to 20% ranges being associated with higher mortality has plenty of critics. As time passed, the association shrank indicating that thinness caused by a pre-existing condition was likely the cause of increasedd mortality and not the thinness itself. BMI is woefully innacurate as 2 petite women can weigh the same but one will be mostly muscle and another much higher fat. Look at slender Asian women -- low bmi and they live much longer until they eat like Westerners and get chubby/fat. I'd rather be thin than than fat or even pleasingly plump as I age. Easier on the joints and if I ever need surgery, thin heals better. Maybe plump can arguably make a gal look younger in the face if she happens to genetically gain weight in the face (I don't -- skinny face even when heavier) -- no worries. That's why our eyes start failing at mid-40s so that we have a buit-in "soft focus" like they use on aging actresses...I say arguably because I don't think double chins and jowls look particularly youthful. But again, who cares. How you you feel is what counts, not how you look. I'm ownin' my photoaged skin and lovin' it.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:40 PM

If only I could get my BMI low enough for you to worry about my mortality! :-))

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:43 PM

Hi Alexandra, The association is epidemiological, a statistical correlation, and has not gone away (shrunk); you are saying that you can explain the association, which is not the same thing as saying that it doesn't exist. If your contradictory data are also epidemiological, they don't refute or prove your point or mine: you need controlled experiments to do that. Ethical problems with that! Of course a sufficiently low BMI is always associated with death. Final point: clinician friends see in practice that elderly people with a bit of fat on them survive cancer better than thin ones.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:57 AM

Neil barzai supercentanarians all have pretty avg body comp.......but very interesting associative finding on their longevity based upon what genes they expressed now....

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on November 16, 2011
at 11:26 PM

It"s funny that on a "Paleo is everything site", we see excuses for Cordain/Lustig et al for not walking the talk. They are old and they are busy. Hogwash! This Paleo Diet Template, done correctly, offsets so much of hormonal aging it is a joke. And too busy falls flat too. My exercise program has sunk to all time lows due to a back injury in late August and I'm still making BF cuts and keeping muscle mass. All this with adrenal glands at half stregth and a sluggish thyroid. I can accept that they like to eat shit! I'm happy to make fun of them, but it doesn't affect my Paleo Menu in the least.

1
8949bf87b0e0aefcad10f29975e4fa2b

(8989)

on November 16, 2011
at 09:26 PM

Cordain is included because he wrote the definitive book. When any of the typical media outlets talk paleo, it is his original diet they are referring to. Dr. Lustig is included because he is local. This question and especially some of the answers and comments are a bit too ageist for me.

1
E286e6ba6ef6c4c4a31a749e59aa57e1

on November 16, 2011
at 01:14 AM

Some of the best professional football coaches in the world have never played pro football nor do they look like they could (Bill Belichick, John Madden and Mike Shanahan to name a few). K.C's current coach never played a game of football even in highschool.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:58 AM

Excellent analogy.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on November 16, 2011
at 02:59 AM

The converse......looks like tarzan but plays like jane.

1
24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 03:26 PM

I didn't watch this video b/c my computer is not behaving right now. But I've seen enough of Lustig that I think his appearance really eats into his credibility. His is an especially disturbing case because he wants to tax sugar in the name of the burden of costs of healthcare. That is somewhat hypocritical ... and a slippery slope.

There's also a second option you didn't consider Andrew: That they DO practice what they preach but aren't being magically transformed into Jack Lallane or Art DeVany ... I find this possibility more disturbing/discouraging. As ambassadors for a movement looks/results DO matter. This is where I've been criticized for my criticism of many low carbers, but I think it is valid. In 2009 when I had plateaued out at a higher than desired weight, I looked around the web for women around my age to see how they were faring. At the time I came across disturbing images of Laura Dolson (About.com LC specialist), Dana Carpender (LC cookbook author and weight loss success story) and Mary Vernon (noted LC doctor). They were all obese at the time, the latter two appear to have slimmed down some since that time. What I wasn't finding were truly lean low carb women. That may just be what it is for women of a certain age, but it is all part of the information on which to base one's lifestyle choices. Thus I look at a Denise Austin and think daaamm she looks good (not perfect!) ... but she was never overweight.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 05:06 PM

Andrew, you're right about the progression. Which still leaves open whether Cordain & Lustig (and others) are actually following their advocated diet and progressing in the wrong direction, or not following it. Neither makes for credibility, right? I'd like to know. Because if it's the latter then it still makes the advocated lifestyle good/beneficial. If it's the former ... it brings the wisdom into question.

42f31d2df6a59f40845020e3ffd70394

on November 15, 2011
at 03:42 PM

That is a really good point and something that I did consider. Most of it is just speculation and all I really have to go by with these two individuals is past photos/videos of them. When I compare them to other people their age on the SAD, or even compare them to themselves from just a few years earlier, their physical appearance seems to be declining at a rate that looks like every other person in America. The examples you gave seem to be overweight people that have been struggling to make progress where the example of Cordain and Lustig seem to be steady progress in the opposite direction.

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:11 PM

interesting point Melissa. girls are very afraid of opening up and saying they have a weight problem, even denying it when its dead obvious they have serious metabolic derangements. guys will flat out come out and say, im a fat ass, what can i do. everyone will help them.

24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on November 15, 2011
at 05:03 PM

That's a really interesting observation Melissa ... how true! @AsianGrok, I'm not sure that's true. Most women are pretty aware of their weight problems and open with them, but if the responses to certain suggestions are any indication, more are perhaps offended by the suggestions of what to do about it.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:20 PM

Some of you talked around it, but let me say bluntly patterns formed through 30 or 40 or 50 years of eating are NOT easily transformed. It's more likely you'll have hills and valleys, great times and slumps. Neither of these guys are 20-somethings and struggling with their weight doesn't mean their advice is wrong. It just means they are swimming upstream.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on November 15, 2011
at 03:45 PM

I doubt cbs would call up Laura or Dana for a show like this. for some reason men can talk about weight loss with a paunch, but not women.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:19 PM

Some of you talked around it, but let me say bluntly 30 or 40 or 50 years of eating is NOT easily transformed. It's more likely you'll have hills and valleys, great times and slumps. Neither of these guys are 20-somethings and struggling with their weight doesn't mean their advice is wrong. It just means they are swimming upstream.

1
3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on November 15, 2011
at 03:00 PM

Walking the talk so to say is an important aspect of of credibility coming out of the gate it seems...I feel it should continue to be so throughout, but I think most people just blow it off as human nature to have some points in life where your not putting your best foot forward.

On the other hand leading by example is nothing but beneficial, both for yourself (internal conflicts can be a bitch) and for those you are hoping to lead. It is hard not to judge those who are a bit more prominent, but really your just speculating if you think their physical appearance is a direct result of their research or ideas.

I'm amazed by the head coaches in the NFL...90+% probably start off in good shape and end up completely obese. Obviously stress plays a role and you can visibly see the new guys plump up over a couple of years on the job. Does show you don't always follow your own advice.

0
8ce8b8fd33944e67dfd6277e7b671815

(327)

on May 11, 2013
at 04:07 AM

http://lastdaysoftheincas.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/Mashco-Piro.jpg

genetics has a lot to do with it, heres a picture of hunter gatherers from a hidden tribe in south america. They don't exactly look like fitness models, are they healthy, probably. No matter how you eat or exercise your still going to have a certain body type, you may not see weight above 200 lbs as a woman on the paleo diet but i wouldn't be surprised if you hovered around 130-150lbs.

0
27361737e33ba2f73ab3c25d2699ad61

(1880)

on November 16, 2011
at 10:30 PM

Hi Panteleimon. I'm not surprised elderly folks with extra fat survive cancer better because Western cancer treatments like chemo and toxic drugs cause nauseau, vomiting and ensuing weightloss. Also, cancer can cause cachexia (wasting) so therefoe the skinny would likely fare worse generally speaking. But ask a surgeon -- Quilt may have good insights here -- and my experience has been that they generally say "skinny always heals better." I asked a surgeon why and he said because extra fat has to heal to and thus the healing process is slower and generally more painful and with more complications. I've heard this from 3 surgeons (vascular, gynecological and breast cancer) but maybe the type of surgery also matters. Back to the purported correlation between very low bmi and risk of death -- correlation is not causation. BMI is notoriously bogus for the very petite, very muscular, those with odd proportions such as very long or short torso and most importantly, says nothing about body composition -- fat versus muscle. BMI to me is "Basically Meaningless Interpretation."

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 27, 2011
at 01:09 AM

But the two men who are the subject of the question appear to be no more than a little overweight. I used BMI as a short-hand, to convey the idea that a little fat on the middle-aged is not necessarily unhealthy. Is your view that they are too obese to survive surgery? If that were true, they would of course be a poor advertisement for paleo (or whatever). But of course it is not true. BMI may be a poor indicator of body-fat but it is undeniable that (a)a low enough BMI is strongly associated with death; and (b)over time sufficient starvation will cause (i)a low BMI and (ii)death.

0
559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

on November 15, 2011
at 05:20 PM

Are they overweight, for their age? Perhaps not, as low BMI is clearly associated with higher mortality.

Perhaps middle-aged people are just not going to be persuasive role-models for younger people.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on November 15, 2011
at 05:35 PM

It's older obese people that have the most to gain, and who have the biggest impact on health care costs. Getting to normal BMI has a huge impact on diabetes and CV health.

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:51 PM

Nance, I have to confess that I am an older (though not obese any more) person and I admit I probably am looking at them with different eyes!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:22 PM

Older obese people will look at these guys with different eyes, probably thinking "If only I could get my weight that good!"

559a1bf85bfe38a0fbbf56377c7278b4

(1548)

on November 15, 2011
at 07:48 PM

I entirely agree that older obese people have the most to gain. I'm just not sure that these two are sufficiently overweight to be unhealthy - they may be reasonable role models for older people. But not very appealing role models for people, say, in their 20s.

E6bb4d8b5c6853dbc88d4c243874dc75

(30)

on November 19, 2011
at 09:33 AM

I totally agree that these two gentlemen, for their age, are perfectly acceptable specimens in terms of weight, especially to those of us upward of 60. (My own weight is perfectly normal,BMI of 23.) But I've also read that a little extra weight as we age is actually a good thing. So in my own never-to-be-humble opinion, I think these two men look just fine. Yes, they could probably stand to lose a little weight, but to me they look perfectly fine and their weight does not detract from their credibility.

0
B4e1fa6a8cf43d2b69d97a99dfca262c

(10255)

on November 15, 2011
at 04:03 PM

Bryce Wylde interviewed Robb Wolfe and Gary Taubes last March. it is mostly a luv fest

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!