Tuesday, April 29, 2008

It's not just carbs......

The standard low carb dogma is that carbs (and to a lesser extent protein) stimulate insulin secretion which activates LPL (lipoprotein lipase) and LPL stores fat. That is true as far as it goes, but I've been learning - primarily through readng Lyle McDonald's Stubborn Fat Loss Solution that there is more to it that this.

Apparently LPL is not the only - or the most important - enzyme associated with fat storage. Acylation Stimulating Protein (ASP) appears - in rats at least (and how applicable this is to humans I'm not sure) - to be even more critical for fat storage than LPL. It is worth doing a pubmed search on ASP (e.g. here)

I'm still thinking through what all this means for my own fatty diet.

Anyway, that is tangential to what I wanted to post.

This popped up in three sources today:

NSAID Improves Insulin Secretion in Obesity

Aspirin-like compounds increase insulin secretion in otherwise healthy obese people

Aspirin-like compounds (salicylates) can claim another health benefit: increasing the amount of insulin produced by otherwise healthy obese people.

Aspirin-like compounds (salicylates) can claim another health benefit: increasing the amount of insulin produced by otherwise healthy obese people. Obesity is associated with insulin resistance, the first step toward type 2 diabetes.

I'm not sure that this is always a health benefit, but that is by the way. The point is that salicylates stimulate insulin production.

Now many natural foods contain salicylates and these food chemicals may be an issue for many people as Emma has been explaining and explaining for a long time!

Irrespective of ASP, it may not be just the carbs stimulating the insulin and making you store fat. It may be certain chemicals in the low carb foods that you are eating.....

UPDATE - Emma has now posted on this.....and she is much cleverer than I am!  UPDATE 2  - Peter is cleverer than me too.


scott said...

Take a look at Lyle's other books, too. I started with Stubborn Fat Solution about the same time you did and have now read three more. A lot of it is making sense and explaining things I have noticed in myself as I try different macronutrient ratios combined with training.

I have been chronically about 15 to 20 pounds overweight on an extremely low-carb diet for years, and I've seen many other cases of this occurring. Intermittent fasting, paleo, Evolutionary Fitness all help some but never able to shed the last pounds. Lyle explains why very well, and my few weeks of a cyclic ketogenic diet have started moving the fat. And it can be adapted to Paleo eating.

I think his biggest strength is that he is not married to one particular approach and readily admits that one size does not fit all.

Chris said...

Hi Scott

I've been reading Lyle's stuff for years. The Ultimate Diet 2.0 is a great primer on biochemistry. As you say, he is quite willing to try and recommend different approaches. He is very good.

Eugene Thong said...

Interesting. It's always posited that "processed" food made you fat, but raised insulin via salicylates makes for a possible pathway.

WRT to ASP, it seems to be stimulated by insulin levels (http://www.endocrine-abstracts.org/ea/0016/ea0016p527.htm), so you probably needn't worry about your fatty diet as long as you watch the carbs.

Looks like eating "real foods" (in particular, meat, leaves, berries, nuts, and seeds) is the way to go.

Bruce K said...

Berries are high in salicylates, as are many nuts, seeds, and plants.

I think the best way to lose weight is like The Bear said - eat nothing from plants (or almost nothing). If you just avoid fiber completely, it will go a long way. So: meat, eggs, butter/ghee, 3-4 oz of cheese, oils that are low in PUFAs (coconut, mac nut, cocoa butter). Paleo carbs, if you eat them - unheated honey (pref in the comb), fruits, additive-free juices, etc. Blaming salicylates is too simplistic and lets other foods off the hook. I think the unnatural food should be eliminated before we blame the natural ones.

How reliable is Lyle McDonald? IIRC he was against saturated fat in his book, Ultimate Diet 2.0. I tend to ignore anyone who accuses saturated fat of evil. Such claims are based on junk science. Anthony Colpo, Dr. Uffe Ravnskov, Ray Peat PhD, Sally Fallon, Mary Enig, and most of the low-carb doctors (Atkins, JK, Lutz, Eades...) have demolished the idea that Saturated Fats are bad. Trans fats and high-PUFA oils cause harm and Saturated Fats get blamed.

Anonymous said...

Mice studies on salicylates indicate that the effect although it is POSTULATED in these studies that it raises insulin production in humans in the trials the effect is actually of promoting insulin stimulated glucose uptake and reducing hepatic glucose output, thereby reducing blood glocose levels WITHOUT increasing insulin production.
Section E