The Coolest Book I've Read In a Long Time
If you're like me, you read everything that comes along that offers to clarify the relationship between nutrition, and particularly carbohydrates, obesity, and metabolic syndrome. And frankly, a lot of it covers the same ground over and over, though some people do it better than others (I'm looking at you, Gary Taubes.)
Well, I just read ... The Fat Switch by Dr. Richard Johnson. I then immediately read it aloud to That Nice Boy I Married. Amazing, ground-breaking stuff, and highly, highly recommended.
The jist is this: The ability to put on fat, and the mechanisms that allow that, are not pathological, but evolutionary survival mechanisms. Animals of every variety have the ability to store fat, and most gain fat, often tremendous quantities of fat, only to simply stop eating and live off that fat comfortably. Further, they often perform prodigious physical feats while fasting, like migrating thousands of miles.
It is, Dr. Johnson says, as if animals have an internal switch that they flip from "fat gaining" to "fat burning." The question then becomes why so many of us seem to have switches that are jammed in the "on" position? The answer to that question is fascinating -- spoiler: it involves fructose. Further, Dr. Johnson holds out real hope for a cure for the broken fat switch.
Here's a brief interview with Dr. Johnson.
I will be incorporating some of the ideas I have gleaned from The Fat Switch into my personal regimen, and will report back on the results. In the meanwhile, if you, like me, want to really understand what the heck is going on with our bodies, I highly recommend you read The Fat Switch.