"Biggest Loser" Contestants Regained Weight. Peat Perspective

Discussion in 'Weight' started by francoislinkus, May 2, 2016.

  1. francoislinkus

    francoislinkus Member

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    Hi there

    I'm new to the forum though I've been reading it for a few months. I am pretty new to my Peat journey. I am assembling some questions as I am needing some help to understand some issues. But in the meantime I am really trying to understand from a Peat perspective how to lose belly fat. I have a sedentary 'sit at desk' job/life. I am overweight and it is front belly and sides, some moobs. I want to lose it. Anyway, I read this article today: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/02/health/biggest-loser-weight-loss.html?_r=0 and I'm even more confused. What is the Peatatarian view on how a 40 year old with a fat belly and a fairly sedentary job loses that weight and keeps it off. Especially when we seem encouraged to eat more calories on a Peat style pro-thyroid diet.
     
  2. DaveFoster

    DaveFoster Member

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    Burning more calories doesn't necessarily equate to an optimal metabolism. Elevated adrenaline, for example, results in large amounts of wasted energy.
     
  3. Tarmander

    Tarmander Member

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    I think the issue comes when trying to view things like this in isolation. The more I read of Peat and studies, the more I wonder if something like "losing belly fat," in the context it is usually talked about, is even possible. Can you really lose that belly fat without improving liver function? Can you lose belly fat without improving metabolism? I guess liposuction is an option....?
     
  4. Blossom

    Blossom Member

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    The biggest loser contestants basically lived through famine conditions which is probably the reason for their suppressed metabolisms. If you haven't semi-starved like them it's possible you could have a different experience by making gradual and sensible changes while working on your metabolism.

    The Minnesota Starvation Experiment might interest you because those men did seem to restore their metabolism after the experiment within a few years of eating normal amounts of food. Most of them gained above their set point temporarily during refeeding but as time went on they started to taper back to their prior weight. So basically the opposite of the biggest losers although both situations seem to confirm the idea that the body really does try to defend an individual's set point.

    The problem with the biggest loser contestants from my perspective is they have mostly continued to restrict their food intake so that could be part of why their metabolisms have remained suppressed for so long. I'm guessing as per the norm that they are probably eating SAD and possibly high pufa as well which wouldn't help matters. It would be interesting to see if anything would be different for them if they ate in a pro-metabolic way.
     
  5. Peater Piper

    Peater Piper Member

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    Starvation in combination with excessive exercise is probably not a good combination at all, and especially not long term. I can't imagine any of the contestants maintained their level of activity after the show. How could they eating so little? The body's being cannibalized, of course it's going to slow the metabolism as much as it can, otherwise death would occur. This is how most people attempt to lose weight, so it's easy to see why it usually fails.
     
  6. haidut

    haidut Member

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    The article explains it pretty well:
    "...But in the years since, more than 100 pounds have crept back onto his 5-foot-11 frame despite his best efforts. In fact, most of that season’s 16 contestants have regained much if not all the weight they lost so arduously. Some are even heavier now. Yet their experiences, while a bitter personal disappointment, have been a gift to science. A study of Season 8’s contestants has yielded surprising new discoveries about the physiology of obesity that help explain why so many people struggle unsuccessfully to keep off the weight they lose."

    "...“It is frightening and amazing,” said Dr. Hall, an expert on metabolism at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, which is part of the National Institutes of Health. “I am just blown away.” It has to do with resting metabolism, which determines how many calories a person burns when at rest. When the show began, the contestants, though hugely overweight, had normal metabolisms for their size, meaning they were burning a normal number of calories for people of their weight. When it ended, their metabolisms had slowed radically and their bodies were not burning enough calories to maintain their thinner sizes."

    I think what is truly and indisputably "frightening and amazing" is that the "expert on metabolism" from no other but NIH is surprised and amazed at these findings!!! It shows the absolute, stunning stupidity at the highest scientific levels in the premier research institute in the world!

    Emotions aside, the phenomenon of regaining weight after dieting is well-known and documented, and has been accepted as given clinically for the last 50 years. Why it still has not found its way in popular media is beyond me, but as you can see even the "experts" are surprised. The reason for regaining weight due to REE resetting to much lower baseline is also fairly well-known, at least in elite athletic circles like boxing, rowing, wrestling, etc where people practice the fine art of maintaining the minimum weight that does NOT negatively affect your REE. They know all too well the consequences of ruining metabolism and how that will affect their health and sports career. The use of T3 among bodybuilders and these other elite athletes is also established practice as pretty much the ONLY legitimate way of losing wright while maintaining your REE. Some of the braver ones go for DNP, and maybe caffeine/ephedrine. And some of the smartest ones go for dopaminergic drugs like bromocriptine or cabergolline. So, if you want to learn real science you'd better go talk to an elite athlete, not the "experts" at NIH, and certainly not your PCP who most likely is a decade behind NIH. I am not sure if the latter is a good or bad thing...
     
  7. mujuro

    mujuro Member

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    I think the phenomenon of hormonal set-points might explain their rapid weight gain. I have spent many years helping people lose weight given my bodybuilding past, and I am yet to find a more efficient, effective method than alternate day fasting (or modified fasting i.e. fasting for half a day). T3 is usually higher in overweight people than underweight people, and as the overweight people restrict calories and the underweight people eat a caloric surplus, their respective T3 levels go in opposite directions. Thus maintaining caloric restriction and trying to lose weight for weeks on end is what I like to think of as a brute force method. Fat loss inevitably stalls. Alternating days of fat loss with days of refeeding/metabolism optimization where T3 production is topped off, is IMO the most effective way.
     
  8. bobbybobbob

    bobbybobbob Member

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    This is getting discussed *everywhere*. If you participate in online communities elsewhere the next 24 hours is an opportune moment to clue flailing people in to solutions that actually work.

    The relevant physiology content of the article is this: leptin, leptin, leptin. Which is of course pretty much irrelevant once you grasp the more important factors.

    I've never been fat (I under-ate from stress), but I get angry about the bum steers handed out to struggling fat people.
     
  9. unexamined_whimsy

    unexamined_whimsy Member

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    That's an excellent summing up @haidut . Do you know of any athletes directly that have used bromocriptine for fat loss? What was their experience like? I know Lyle MacDonald recommends its use, albeit in the context of calorie restriction.
     
  10. Koveras

    Koveras Member

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    I think the lower T3 is influenced greatly by low liver glycogen stores, and there was an older suppversity article you've posted about that showed 100 grams of fructose per day prevented this - still a very under-utilized strategy it seems. There are other dietary strategies as well that can further influence dopamine levels as well, not that they are better or preferable to pharmaceuticals, but I think it is good to remind everyone of those possibilities.

    Bromocriptine IMO is useful to those who have a significant amount of weight to lose, but becomes dangerous if you continue to use it as you get very lean, especially with activity, and if calories and carbohydrates are low. The decrease in dopamine signalling with weight loss is adaptive to an extent and the postural hypotension from bromo under those circumstances can become quite risky.
     
  11. Simonsays

    Simonsays Member

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    I can sympathise, im 51 year old hypothyroid similar probs. I take T4. The key is to boost metabolism through proper diet, not increased exercising.

    Ive stopped the long walks. Some moderate walking. (I do some moderate heavy weights for a few minutes each day at home and this has definitely increased muscle mass)

    But Ive gone down from 40 inch waist to 38, but now 38 is getting loose on me. So im definitely losing fat and about half stone in weight. People are starting to notice, but the scales werent shifting much, so i think this was muscle gain.

    Ive gone against the mainstream and tried to bolster metabolism Peat stylee, increased sugar (fructose and glucose), 100% also salt consumption way up. Skimmed milk (lower in estrogen) by the gallon.

    Low fat ( especially PUFA) and very little starch are keys i think. I carrot salad everyday also, as i have definite estrogen dominance (moobs is a sign i think, visible veins on face).

    This and the very little starch has definitely helped my rosacea ( lowered endotoxin leaky gut/liver ??).

    To what degree each has helped , i dont know, but i think its helping my liver de fat, which i think is helping to boost my metabolism. Im not a big drinker, but have cut out alcohol, as this was definitely triggering off my rosacea and is a starchy sugar?? and full of estrogen.

    The diet can be a bit restrictive and i go off plan now and again, but dont beat myself up over it.

    I also supplement with Vit D, taurine, ornithine and a little Vit E topically for PUFA loss, K2 and some aspirin now and again.

    Ive also had to reverse my liking for a cool environment, not such a problem now its getting warmer, but staying warm at all times, so ive had to crank the central heating up.

    Also try to eat little and often, as eating is thermogenic. I dont count calories.

    The down side is i think increased fatigue, which i read on one of haiduts posts that this can be a problem for some. I already suffer from this, i think due to hypothyroid issues.

    Im also very impatient, but ive heard Ray say that people should lose weight slowly, due to PUFA release i think??.
     
  12. Simonsays

    Simonsays Member

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    Ohh , how could i forget coffee, but now with sugar!!
     
  13. thegiantess

    thegiantess Member

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    I agree most athletes that are serious know a lot about how to maintain one's body or achieve a different one. I think figure competitors should be lumped in there as well. As for the NIH being so behind... My grandmother who worked a switchboard at a factory her entire life and who has only a 10th grade education knows that every time she diets extremely she screws her metabolism. She has a history of losing insane amounts of weight (100-150 pounds) by dojng weight watchers. She will regain and then do it again a few years later. Every time she remarks on how she has to eat less and less at each go around in order to lose at the same rate. Now if she figured it out, what's homeboy with the Phd been doing with his time?
     
  14. jag2594

    jag2594 Member

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    What really concerns me is the inability for researchers of this study to conclude that having a low metabolic rate is more likely a symptom of hypothyroidism. In all the articles circulating the internet associating the biggest losers with low metabolic rate. They forget to mention this one fact. They don't even bring up the possibility of hypothyroidism.

    If you looked at the pfizer website regarding cytomel, they explicit state that one shouldn't use cytomel to treat obesity. They phrase the argument in a way that they conclude that cytomel does cause fat loss, but because it doesn't fit in their idealistic and metaphysical view of hypothyroidism, doctors completely disregard the possibility of its use. The medical field is nothing more than philosophical rhetoric.

    My opinion is that there is more to the story. I wouldn't be surprise that the use of cytomel and synthroid for treating obesity has been suppress because of the weight loss/bodybuilding culture. Science and facts are subordinate to business and marketing. All you have to do is look at the commercials on TV every five seconds showing a stupid ab cruncher or treadmill for sale. Or jenny craig or whatever else is in trend now a days for marketing purposes. It's crazy.
     
  15. thebigpeatowski

    thebigpeatowski Member

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    I've harped about this before, but Cron-O keeps telling me that in order for me to reach my weight goal that I need to burn anywhere from 1100 to 1400 MORE calories per day....according to their calculations I should be gaining a pound of fat every three to four days, but I'm not. In fact I'm down half a pound.

    I'm a very short (5'2") middle aged (soon to be 50) woman with a history of morbid obesity AND probably heading in to menopause any minute now....I don't exercise beyond walking, so what gives?

    I'm guessing Cron-O's metabolic equations MUST be based on a population of severely hypothyroid people.....same with NIH and their "experts".
     
  16. Koveras

    Koveras Member

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    Thyroid hormone is not a panacea for obesity.

    The goal of pharmaceutical companies is to produce a drug that will cause weight loss in the absence of conscious lifestyle changes - thyroid hormone is not one of those drugs.

    Positives of thyroid hormone for body composition control
    -Prevent reduced metabolism due to weight/fat loss and/or calorie restriction - most relevant for those who track and control calories
    -Reduce fat gain on a hypercaloric diet - most relevant for athletes who work to gain lean mass in their off season

    Negatives of thyroid hormone for body composition control
    -Increased appetite - most relevant for those who eat 'ad libitum' (most people), may cancel out any fat loss benefits due to faster metabolism.
    -Reduced fat oxidation - relevant for those who wish to lose fat and not as concerned about the health implications of burning fat over carbs (or more worried of the negative health effects of obesity)

    I certainly think thyroid has a place for long term health and body composition, but if you're discussing someone who is already obese, you have to remember that there are multiple redundant pathways controlling metabolism and behaviour (appetite, cravings, physical activity, etc.) and only addressing one is likely to cause an adaptive homeostatic response in others.
     
  17. Koveras

    Koveras Member

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    CRON = Calorie Restriction with Optimal Nutrition.

    Cronometer is useful for tracking food intake but believe the recommended intake it gives you is probably 10-25% below maintenance for most individuals.
     
  18. jag2594

    jag2594 Member

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    Wrong the goal of pharmaceutical companies is to make as much money possible. Even if that means selling drugs that don't work or to the point that they do biological damage for example DES and thalidomide.

    I lost thirty pounds while taking Cynomel while increasing my food intake. Unless you have taken Cynomel (Grossman brand not including other brands) most people won't believe how well it works for fat loss. I won't say its a magic bullet for obesity, with diet changes it can definitely help fat loss and I think cure obesity.

    Fat oxidation has nothing to do with weight loss. In fact, it can cause weight gain by inhibiting mitochondrial respiration and releasing free fatty acids into the blood stream. 2'4-dinitrophenol is a chemical that was use in 1930's for weight loss. It can cure type 2 diabetes and obesity. The studies on it are clear, it does this through uncoupling mitochondria which increases carbon dioxide. It decrease free fatty acids and increases the use of glucose. Bromocriptine has most of the same effects but though the increasing dopamine and decreasing prolactin and serotonin. People with type 2 diabetes are more likely to be obese or overweight. The mechanisms behind this are due to the Randle cycle.
     
  19. thebigpeatowski

    thebigpeatowski Member

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    Cron-OCD tells me that in order for me to maintain my current weight of 136 lbs. I can eat 1431 calories per day, of course if I lose the Last Dreaded Ten pounds that maintenance number will drop even lower.....maintenance will be somewhere around 1200 calories per day. Total Starvation.

    I'm eating well over a thousand calories per day above and beyond what they say I should be eating.....that's way more than 25%.

    Makes NO sense to me.
     
  20. thebigpeatowski

    thebigpeatowski Member

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    TOTALLY agree.....even after I stopped using the Cynomel, I've maintained not only my 35 pound fat loss, but I have a VASTLY improved metabolism.

    *smiles lovingly at my last bottle of Cynomel* considering cracking it open to lose The Last Dreaded Ten....
     
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