Broccoli, Cauliflower, and Cancer

Can I drink alcohol on my diet?

Chitosan - A Pill that Absorbs Fat?

Cholesterol - Eat more fat to lower?

Coffee! Should You or Shouldn't You?


Ephedra - Warning

EZ Zucchini

Fat Snack

Fats - Mono, Poly, Saturated

Food Poisoning

Food Labels that Fool You

Genetics and Obesity


Hunger - What is it?

I Ate too Much!

Olestra - The fat that's not a fat?



Salt - Something Nice

Sports Nutrition

Sun - Good Nutrition

Vegetable Soup Homemade

Vegetarian Eating

Vegetarians are Healthier?

Winners and Losers on Your Plate


What is a "fad" diet?
A fad diet is considered by responsible Nutritionists to be an unhealthy, low calorie diet that guarantees an extraordinary amount of weight loss in a short period of time. Promoters of fad diets claim that you don't have to give up high fat, high cholesterol foods, you don't have to exercise, and you can eat all you want and still lose weight! Fad diet books are purposely deceptive and untruthful. The diet plan may include sales of supplements, pills, or pre-packaged foods that are expensive and senseless as an aid in losing weight.


Book Review

by Drs. Rachael and Richard Heller

 The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet

The latest in absurd fad diet books is written by Drs. Rachael and Richard Heller and based on the concept of "hyperinsulinemia" (over-production of insulin). In The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet, the Heller's explain that when the "normal" person eats carbohydrates, insulin is produced, satiety sets in, and hunger goes away. But when the "carbohydrate addict" eats carbohydrates, an excess of insulin is produced, hunger continues, and this leads to overeating and weight gain. The Hellers therefore conclude, that eating complex carbohydrates like fruit and vegetables will make you fat!

The facts: The release of insulin in response to eating carbohydrates is a normal occurrence in the body - without insulin, the food we eat could not be metabolized. The amount of insulin produced after a meal is in direct correlation with the amount of food we eat. The exception applies to a small percentage of the population with diagnosed hypoglycemia and others who suffer from Type I and Type II Diabetes.

In a condition known as Type II Diabetes, primarily caused by obesity, there is a problem with the body's ability to use insulin which results in both high blood insulin and sugar levels. With this kind of diabetes, an increased level of insulin in the blood is caused by obesity and not the other way around; obesity is not caused by increased insulin levels. When the Type II diabetic loses weight, blood sugar and insulin levels will return to normal.

Is hyperinsulinemia linked to heart disease? Maybe, but not the way the Hellers explain it. Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) is directly linked to obesity, meaning your chances of developing CAD are greater if you are overweight than if you are of normal weight. Obesity causes heart disease and obesity causes hyperinsulinemia. In other words, obesity is the missing link the Heller's fail to mention that connects heart disease and hyperinsulinemia together. Weight loss, along with a low fat, low cholesterol diet, will bring blood levels of insulin and cholesterol to within normal limits and decrease your risk of developing heart disease.

The Hellers further describe a condition they call "carbohydrate addiction" as if there really were such a thing! But if carbohydrate addiction did exist, then it certainly would be a good thing because the body, including the brain, uses carbohydrate as its primary source of energy. Shouldn't we crave those things that are good for us?

When analyzing the Heller's diet plan, it consists of a difficult and unnecessary system of complimentary and reward meals, one high carbohydrate meal and two high protein meals which are low in calories. Without a doubt, if you follow these calorie depleted meal plans, you'll lose weight. Why? Because you're consuming less calories, not because you're abnormal or a carbohydrate addict.

More facts! Dr. Heller describes his experience of running 42 miles per week, but says it never helped him to lose weight. He further states that "exercise is not essential." Isn't that what all of us sedentary couch potatoes would like to believe? However, for a sedentary person who is overweight, it's very "essential" to begin an exercise program. Dr. Heller fails to mention that not only does regular exercise burn calories and help control appetite, it causes the body to require less insulin and is therefore advised for Type II diabetics.

Warning: If you have hypoglycemia or diabetes, avoid the Heller's diet plan. Their plan if closely followed, can cause wide fluctuations in blood sugar levels which can be dangerous, particularly if you're taking insulin or an oral hypoglycemic medication.

Some good advice: If you feel you have a medical disorder, see a physician. He'll want to examine you and will probably order some clinical tests to help in diagnosing your condition, like a blood or urine test or perhaps an x-ray. A responsible medical doctor does not use a 17-point questionnaire to diagnose your medical condition - as used by the Heller's in their book - and you should not do so either.

Where do you get your nutrition information? Most states now have licensure laws for Dietitians and Nutritionists. Be sure your nutrition advisor is "Licensed" by the State as a Licensed Dietitian (LD) or Licensed Nutritionist (LN), or in states that don't have licensure laws, a Registered Dietitian.




CarboH, Inc.
Barbara Herondorf, L.D.

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