Author Topic: Lex's Journal  (Read 638155 times)

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Offline majormark

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1050 on: August 03, 2010, 04:02:20 am »
King Salmon,
I wrote about fruits helping with fat digestion (AV's view), not about meat.

Anyway, I don't think they are essential for fat digestion unless a person is unhealthy and lacks enzymes or some other thing.


Offline lex_rooker

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1051 on: August 03, 2010, 04:26:32 am »
Majormark,
I seriously doubt that fruit is essential for digestion at all.  To me the whole idea that I have to eat one type of food in order to properly digest another type of food is total nonsense.  There is absolutely no evidence to support this except, of course, for the pronouncement of a self proclaimed guru who can’t provide any peer reviewed evidence to back up his claims.  My personal experience is certainly counter to this idea.

King Salmon,
I was into the food combining gig hook, line, and sinker for about 20 years.  My belief, based on all that I read from the likes of Bragg, Sheldon, Wigmore, Walker, Ehret, Carrington, et al, was that food combining principals were critical to maintaining optimal health.  After abandoning food combining, sprouting, juicing, and all the other claptrap of the Natural Hygiene movement, (because of declining health), my health improved considerably – even when eating copious amounts of watermelon with my fat laden steak.  I’ve come to the conclusion that all the hoopla made over food combining is just that, hoopla.

Lex

Offline Michael

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1052 on: August 03, 2010, 05:23:39 am »
Lex and alphagruis,

Thank you both for sharing your exhaustive experiences, understandings and rationale as well as the detailed explanations of current scientific knowledge.  I, for one, greatly appreciate your efforts.
Lex, particularly, thank you for sharing your hard-fought wisdom.

I believe the truth is always found in simplicity and it's so easy to get caught up in the details of our modern scientific approach.  I think science has a valid place, indeed, holds a critical position in helping attain knowledge and determine our thinking and direction.  But, like obsessively focusing on the minute details of musical theory, we must always remain conscious that in doing so the music is not lost.

I remain very interested in the science and theories and have no doubt that I will continue to experiment myself.  But, I do recognise the importance of not dwelling on theories and think Lex makes some very important points.  Personally, I will continue, until irrefutably convinced otherwise, to base my own dietary choices on my own experiences and the simple basis of what foods were likely to be available in the paleolithic era before the advent of cooking.  Primarily meats, fats, organs, other animal parts along with small quantities of eggs, fish/seafood, berries and limited vegetation.
1. When offered something that is too good to be true. It is.
2. Greed and fear are poor states of mind in which to make decisions; like shopping at the supermarket when you are hungry.
3. Exponential growth is mathematically unsustainable.

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1053 on: August 03, 2010, 05:37:13 am »
Alpha, thank you for answering our question!

Lex, what´s your definition of "primary fuel source"?

Offline King Salmon

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1054 on: August 03, 2010, 06:17:59 am »
Majormark,it's ok.I was referring to animal foods(meat) which contain fat(same thing really).I'm assuming you were talking about animal fat.No biggie.


Lex,I appreciate your experience.And since this is your journal,I don't want to bug you with this too much,but we'll just have to agree to disagree ;)

I have saved myself from upset stomachs and unhappy trips to the bathroom by using food combining.I'm not going to eat watermelon/bananas...or whatever sweet fruits with my animal foods just because you didn't seem to have any problems with it.I'll stick to cucumbers and radishes,thanks :)
"Eat the best of what's available and call it a day"

Offline lex_rooker

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1055 on: August 03, 2010, 01:13:03 pm »
Michael,
Every other animal on earth manages to survive and prosper without knowing the scientific workings of their bodies.  They eat biologically appropriate foods and live their lives.  It’s humans that want to eat plastic and cardboard and then find scientific solutions to their health problems.

Hanna,
A primary fuel source is what the cell will choose first for it’s energy source if available.  It will choose other fuels only if the primary source is not available.

King Salmon,
Don’t go away mad.  The idea is to get you to thoroughly think through your positions rather than blindly accept what you are told by the ‘experts’.  Even peer reviewed studies must be evaluated carefully as the results are often different that the official reports would make you think.

Lex   

alphagruis

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1056 on: August 03, 2010, 03:25:43 pm »
Lex, Michael,

You're mistaken if you believe that I dwell heavily on any theory or put too much weight on my point. As I said before and as usual only long term experiments may finally tell us for sure whether discarding all plant food from our diet is finally detrimental, advantageous or merely neutral  in terms of health and longevity. I think my previous post clearly emphasized that.

Meanwhile we will certainly agree on the fact that ZC is an extreme restrictive diet and that our paleo ancestors or wild animals didn't worry about eating or not eating carbs since they didn't know what it means. The simple idea of ZC is already a modern product of scientific knowledge and actually based on much dietary reasonings or theories. As I recalled recently in my comments on instincto guru claims there is no meaningful experiment that does not need theory to formulate it and this applies to the ZC experiment too.

One cannot on the one hand heavily invoke various theoretical concepts such as the well known increase in mitochondial activity and efficiency observed under carbs restriction or starvation that support one's present views or beliefs and on the other just ignore or dismiss other as well known theoretical knowledge that seems to not support them or merely somewhat question them.

I'm curious to find out how an organism on ZC might work actually and meet his minimal glucose needs. In this respect, Lex, I did not "bury in the latest micro metabolic theories" but just recall some since long well know basic facts from biochemistry and of relevance to ZC. This is fundamental undisputed knowledge in biology that applies to all animal organisms and has nothing to do with various mainstream medical stances such as the cholesterol crap.

 In other words I just recalled what the biochemical constraints actually are and what are a priori the consequences of ZC systematic neoglucogenesis, namely an increased energy cost and related metabolic load and possibly, depending on which biochemical pathway in gluconeogenesis is actually dominant, an increased amount of nitrogen waste to get rid off.

I thought I had also clearly stated before that this is not necessarily detrimental or might be completely negligible or better might even be amply couterbalanced by other now unknown advantages of ZC. So I make this very clear once more here just to emphasize that we agree in this respect.

Where we don't apparently agree is that we therefore just can ignore my point. IMO it desserves to be kept in mind because we just don't know yet and there might be other unknown disadvantages rather than advantages of ZC that enhance rather than offset the possible detrimental effects I put forward.

And also because, due to some economy principle apparently at work in nature, I feel that increased energy cost and metabolic load and rate might be of concern. There is now a large body of very serious knowledge that comes from calorie restriction experiments on various animals ranging from worms and insects to primates and man. These experiments invariably show undisputable usually spectacular positive effects in terms of various heath parameters and longevity associated with basal metabolic rate decrease. Less calories dissipated per unit time seems always better.    

« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 03:42:42 pm by alphagruis »

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1057 on: August 04, 2010, 05:11:39 am »
Quote
A primary fuel source is what the cell will choose first for it’s energy source if available.  It will choose other fuels only if the primary source is not available.

How do you / I know what your / my cells choose first for their energy source if available?

Quote
How can you possibly know that your body is using fat as its primary fuel source – especially when eating raw Vegan.  The fact that you can’t cancel carbs and are driven to eat them is compelling evidence to the contrary.  Your own evidence shows that your body is glucose driven.  To change it would require that you reduce carbs below 30g/day for several months.  This would be difficult if not impossible on a vegan diet since by definition it is carb based.

Lex, my definition of veganism seems to be different from yours. If you are really interested in my former or current diet (which I don´t believe is the case ;)), would you please look into my previous posts. Here they are:
http://www.rawpaleoforum.com/?action=profile;u=1130;sa=showPosts

Offline Michael

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1058 on: August 04, 2010, 05:46:18 am »
alphagruis,

I hope you don't think I ignore your point and, if I may say, I don't think Lex is ignoring your point either.  In fact, I think we are all thinking in the same way on this and do actually agree.  I believe that you did state your case clearly and the points you have re-affirmed were already understood if, perhaps, not acknowledged. 

Your contribution to the discussion is absolutely vital and the learned points you have raised, I think, are being kept in mind - either at the forefront or back of depending on the individual.

Whilst your point is not being ignored, however, we must each continue with our own lives and make our dietary choices daily.  Lex wisely adheres to a comprehensive program of lab tests which, I believe, simultaneously allows him to monitor the possible impact of the scientific possibilities you outline so succinctly.  I am very keen to begin a similar program.

1. When offered something that is too good to be true. It is.
2. Greed and fear are poor states of mind in which to make decisions; like shopping at the supermarket when you are hungry.
3. Exponential growth is mathematically unsustainable.

Offline lex_rooker

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1059 on: August 04, 2010, 08:06:25 am »
Alphagruis,
I really don’t dispute much of what you say.  Only that there often seems to be an implied judgment that one thing is more desirable than another.

The energy cost of a function may be well known. I also feel that for the most part it is irrelevant.  That one metabolic function consumes more or less energy than another may be true, however, the energy cost doesn’t determine the desirability of one function over another – it’s just the energy cost.  The real question is which has the greater overall benefit to the organism.

I remember when a friend of mine was going to open up a new store.  He had the choice of a small shop with low rent or a mall location at 6 times the rent.  I suggested that the lower cost option would certainly be preferred.  He countered that the foot traffic in the higher priced mall was 10 times that of the lower rent location and that the typical mall customer better fit his “ideal customer” profile.  He expected to make far more profit from the higher priced location even though is costs were significantly more.  The cost might be 6x more but he expected more than 10x the profit and as it turned out, such were his results.

I guess what I’m saying is that biological constraints may not be an accurate indication of the overall efficacy of a metabolic function or process.  At least I’m not willing to make such judgments.

You are quite correct that I often give technical replies to my understanding of how a metabolic process works.  What I try like the devil to avoid is passing judgment on whether the process is good or bad.  Truth is I have no way of knowing.  I don’t even say that ZC is good or bad, only that what I am currently doing is giving ME the results that I desire.  Whether something different would give similar or even better results I do not know and the best I can do is offer that others evaluate the published data as objectively as possible and then see if their own experience is in line with the data. 

Yup calorie restriction does indeed seem to work in terms of longevity, but longevity is not my personal goal.  There are many side effects to the severe calorie restriction necessary to significantly extend life, and for me, a long life is of little value if what I must give up to attain it causes my quality of life to suffer.  Others, like yourself, may have different priorities and that is your choice. However, neither your choices or mine are good or bad in and of themselves, they are just our personal choices. 

Less calories dissipated per unit time is better only if it achieves the results you desire, and for me, the most important thing is the quality of life.  It’s the quality of the journey that counts, not the length. The destination is the same for everyone.  I’m not willing to make the sacrifices demanded by calorie restriction to live longer.  I prefer to live better rather than longer, and as such I have little interest in artificial calorie restriction protocols, but that’s my choice.

So I guess we agree on much of the science, we just have different ideas about its practical value.  Much of the science you quote may be dead-on accurate, but it does nothing to help me improve the quality of my daily life.

Lex

 
« Last Edit: August 04, 2010, 12:41:49 pm by lex_rooker »

Offline lex_rooker

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1060 on: August 04, 2010, 12:19:42 pm »
How do you / I know what your / my cells choose first for their energy source if available?

I don't know, however, your description of how you feel when you exclude carbs from your diet is a major clue.  I've also been there, done that, and know that reducing carbs low enough in your diet to switch to a fat based metabolism is difficult at best and few are able to do it.  Most have the same experience as you and give up, insisting that their body requirements are different than others that are successful and they NEED carbs.  100g of carbs per day is huge, and my experience and that of many others as well, show that your body just won't switch to using fatty acids as its primary fuel without severely reduce carb intake for an extended period of time.

Kata Strong and Mary Massung did much work in this area.  They found that carbs had to be reduced below 30g per day for an extended period (weeks or months depending on how many carbs were included in the diet) to cause the body to switch from a glucose based metabolism to a fat based metabolism.  During the transition there is a massive craving for carbs, and in my case, lab tests and houly BG measurements showed my body was still adapting to a fat based diet with zero plant based carbs after a year or 18 months.  I could be very wrong, but what you've said in your posts tells me that your metabolism is still glucose based and not fat based.

Another interesting tidbit is that those of us that have transitioned to a fat based metabolism tend to appear to be insulin resistant as our pancreas is no longer poised to produce massive amounts of insulin after a meal heavy in carbs.  Our blood sugars also tend to be very steady, right around 100, regardless of when we take the measurement, before eating, after eating, or overnight fasting.  I have detailed records of how my BG curve has changed over the last 5 years of eating ZC.  Others that have committed to ZC for extended periods find that their experience is the same.  One of your posts indicates that your BG is in the mid 70s.  This would not be the case if your metabolism was fat based.  BG would rise into the 90s and stay in the upper range as your body would not be using it.  Little BG would be produced and very slowly.  Small amounts of insulin would be released to keep it stable, but since the BG rise is very gentle when no carbs are eaten, insulin doesn’t over shoot.  A low fasting BG indicates that high carb intake at meals creates a rapid rise in BG causing insulin to overshoot and then BG plummets to the low end and stays there until your next meal. 

Lex, my definition of veganism seems to be different from yours. If you are really interested in my former or current diet (which I don´t believe is the case ;)), would you please look into my previous posts. Here they are:
http://www.rawpaleoforum.com/?action=profile;u=1130;sa=showPosts

Veganism to me is a plant based diet.  If you are primarily eating foods that come from plants then you are eating far more carbs than would allow your body to transition to a fat based metabolism. It has nothing to do with how much fat you eat, but only how many carbs.  From the various foods you mention in your posts you eat loads of carbs.  You could add a gallon of fat to what you are currently eating every day and your body still wouldn’t transition to a fat based metabolism.

Why?  Because the carbs you eat cause BG to rise rapidly.  The body senses this rapid rise and detects danger as high BG will harm us.  It reacts in various ways and by various hormones such as insulin, to cause the body and its cells to quickly sweep the excess glucose from the blood.  As much as possible is forced into the cells to be used as fuel and the rest is converted to fat and stored.

What happened to that gallon of fat you ate with the carbs? Well, high levels of fatty acids are not dangerous to the body so they are allowed to float around until they can be stored or eliminated.  There is also evidence that much of it won’t even be digested as it is rejected when blood levels of fatty acids are high. The body’s cells will reject the fatty acids as fuel because their priority is to get rid of the dangerous levels of BG and are overloaded with glucose from the carbs you ate.  Dealing with the glucose has to be the body’s first priority or we will go into a coma and die.

I mean no disrespect.  Each of us is on our own path and must find our own way.  I always tell people what I believe based on many years of experience and much failure.  Over the years I’ve fooled myself into believing as much nonsense as everyone else and probably more.  I’d even venture to say that most of what I think I know and understand now is so much nonsense as well.  I certainly don’t have all the answers, and many of the answers I have are probably wrong.  Therefore, I do my best to tell you exactly what I’m doing, show you the lab tests, hazard a guess or two about what I THINK is going on, and then let you make up your own mind on the subject.

Hope this helps,

Lex

Offline Josh

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1061 on: August 04, 2010, 08:48:03 pm »
Quote
They found that carbs had to be reduced below 30g per day for an extended period (weeks or months depending on how many carbs were included in the diet) to cause the body to switch from a glucose based metabolism to a fat based metabolism.

Hey Lex. That's an interesting titbit. Do you recall how it took to switch for different levels?

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1062 on: August 05, 2010, 12:32:00 am »
Hi Lex,

You seem to think that sugar is a kind of poison. Why? Is there any evidence that sugar is detrimental even in moderate quantities? And if it is not natural or at least not healthy to eat, for example, 100g sugar per day, then why is there sugar in mother´s milk? The sugar will cause the BG of the baby to "overshoot" and make it sick. And where do you think did the paleolithic hunters and gatheres find so much animal fat? Wild animals are usually lean and if our ancestors had adapted to a diet consisting exclusively of animal food then we should be able to live on lean meat without a high proportion of fat.

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1063 on: August 05, 2010, 01:47:35 am »
Michael, Lex,

I fairly agree with your latest comments.

My natural tendency is to discuss things from a pure impersonal technical point of view because I'm just curious and have fun with this and have myself apparently no serious health problems anymore . If there seems to be judgments in terms of good or bad it's really unintentional. While this approach might be helpful it may also sometimes be confusing here because this forum is first a means for people to get advice in order to improve their health rather than a tribune for a scientific debate.

In fact I'm as reluctant as you are to give any specific advice except the general raw paleo one and readily agree with you that my point about biochemistry is by now of little help in making a decision as to the quantity of plant food to include in our diet .

I really think that we all have to make many decisions in our life whose consequences and long term pertinence cannot be foreseen. And even if re diet we'll probably essentially know what to do in future, science even tells us that in general this uncertainty will always remain in most of our important decisions. We must live with this and accept the risks. In your very wise  non ideologic approach to ZC there is essentially no risk in my opinion. If I personally eat more or less plant foods depending on season it is not because I have as yet evidence that it's "better" but simply it so happens that I always did so , never had apparently trouble with them, was never vegan, and so was never urged to discard them.

Such decisions indeed depend among other things on our personal goals in life. As you I think that to have fun in our lifetime is more important than longevity. Now from a pure scientific point of view, and I have fun with science ;), the calorie restriction experiments are of high interest.



    

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1064 on: August 05, 2010, 05:49:10 am »
Hi Lex again,

Quote
What happened to that gallon of fat you ate with the carbs? Well, high levels of fatty acids are not dangerous to the body so they are allowed to float around until they can be stored or eliminated.  There is also evidence that much of it won’t even be digested as it is rejected when blood levels of fatty acids are high.

That´s interesting. What kind of evidence is this? Are there studies on this subject?

Quote
The body’s cells will reject the fatty acids as fuel because their priority is to get rid of the dangerous levels of BG and are overloaded with glucose from the carbs you ate.  Dealing with the glucose has to be the body’s first priority or we will go into a coma and die.

BTW, Doen´t this imply that certain food combining rules make sense?  

alphagruis

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1065 on: August 05, 2010, 03:02:15 pm »
Hi Lex,

You seem to think that sugar is a kind of poison. Why? Is there any evidence that sugar is detrimental even in moderate quantities?

IMO glucose cannot by itself be termed as a "poison" since we have normally about 90-100 mg/dl of it in our blood and our organism does everything it can to maintain this concentration as constant as possible whatever the diet. The question is rather whether a diet which routinely provides (even raw natural) foods rich in sugar is detrimental. It is not unlikely as attested by the fact that humans have a more or less sweet tooth reflecting the fact that highly sweet foods were normally rare before neolithic revolution. Chemically pure sugar on the other hand is certainly not an appropriate food too. Also dietary sugar may be indispensable in mother's milk during the rapid growth of a baby and detrimental in high amounts in adulthood.
  

I suggest reading this about the fuels used by animal organisms.

http://www.unisanet.unisa.edu.au/08366/index.htm

This might not be the whole story but is an important basis everybody here in this forum should be aware of.

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1066 on: August 05, 2010, 05:31:17 pm »
Alpha, Lex, of course I meant dietary sugar contained in fruit etc. BTW, it would make no sense for humans to have a "sweet tooth" if dietary sugar in any significant amounts could only be detrimental and would better be replaced by protein. Carnivores like lions and cats don´t have a "sweet tooth". There must be a reason why humans have a sweet tooth.

Offline miles

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1067 on: August 05, 2010, 07:39:08 pm »
How do you know they don't have a sweet tooth? Are you a Lion?
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Offline majormark

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1068 on: August 05, 2010, 07:45:35 pm »
I suggest reading this about the fuels used by animal organisms.

http://www.unisanet.unisa.edu.au/08366/index.htm

This might not be the whole story but is an important basis everybody here in this forum should be aware of.

In the article about ATP there is this statement:

"Skeletal muscle converts chemical energy to mechanical energy with high efficiency (only 30 - 50% waste)."

What does that mean? What is the chemical energy composed of? What is that 50% waste?

Offline Hanna

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1069 on: August 05, 2010, 08:34:00 pm »
How do you know they don't have a sweet tooth? Are you a Lion?

This is a scientifically proven fact:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=strange-but-true-cats-cannot-taste-sweets

alphagruis

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1070 on: August 05, 2010, 08:59:05 pm »
Alpha, Lex, of course I meant dietary sugar contained in fruit etc. BTW, it would make no sense for humans to have a "sweet tooth" if dietary sugar in any significant amounts could only be detrimental and would better be replaced by protein. Carnivores like lions and cats don´t have a "sweet tooth". There must be a reason why humans have a sweet tooth.

I'm not so sure that carnivores don't have some sweet tooth. Dogs for instance usually eagerly eat a piece of refined sugar or sweet fruit. A lion or other carnivores in the wild just have normally little opportunity to eat sweet food and more importantly they have been trained by their mother or father to just hunt and eat preys and make a living in this way rather than climb on trees and eat fruit . A tropism for sugar seems to be a common basic phylogenetic feature of all animal cells as strongly suggested by underlying biochemistry. In other words it seems to me that carnivore's "dietary culture" just doesn't usually include fruit (but there are well known exceptions such as foxes) and thus they are not initially attracted to sweet taste just because they are not used to it as we usually do not like or refrain from eating a new food that does not belong to our dietary culture .

Now, I agree, Hanna, BTW during their long evolutionnary path without relying on any sweet foot some carnivores such cats may have lost the ability to detect sugar with their taste buds but their brain and muscles still use glucose.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2010, 09:10:47 pm by alphagruis »

Offline 00nightstorm

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1071 on: August 05, 2010, 09:04:04 pm »
Alpha, Lex, of course I meant dietary sugar contained in fruit etc. BTW, it would make no sense for humans to have a "sweet tooth" if dietary sugar in any significant amounts could only be detrimental and would better be replaced by protein. Carnivores like lions and cats don´t have a "sweet tooth". There must be a reason why humans have a sweet tooth.

There is a lot of talk about reclassifying sugar as a drug.  Any drug ingested over a period of time will cause the body to become dependent on it to a certain degree.  Someone who snorts cocaine every day and then suddenly stops will feel intense cravings for cocaine.  The same applies to your "sweet tooth" theory.  It has been stated time and again that the longer you abstain from sugar the less you crave it.  There are actually a lot of foods that people crave that are not good for them and not all of them have sugar in them.  Its kind of like asking, "Why do I crave white rice with soy sauce if I'm not supposed to eat it".

Offline Iguana

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1072 on: August 05, 2010, 09:22:51 pm »
How do you know they don't have a sweet tooth? Are you a Lion?
I don’t have a lion at home to experiment, but I tried to give honey, apples, bananas, figs, dates to my cat: he’s not interested at all, no way. ;D But he likes avocado, pre-chewed walnuts and almonds, a bit of durian… and of course mice, birds, meat, fish, eggs, insects. 

I'm not so sure that carnivores don't have some sweet tooth. Dogs for instance usually eagerly eat a piece of refined sugar or sweet fruit. A lion or other carnivores in the wild just have normally little opportunity to eat sweet food and more importantly they have been trained by their mother or father to just hunt and eat preys and make a living in this way rather than climb on trees and eat fruit . A tropism for sugar seems to be a common basic phylogenetic feature of all animal cells as strongly suggested by underlying biochemistry. In other words it seems to me that carnivore's "dietary culture" just doesn't usually include fruit (but there are well known exceptions such as foxes) and thus they are not initially attracted to sweet taste just because they are not used to it as we usually do not like or refrain from eating a new food that does not belong to our dietary culture .   

My cat was separated very young from a pet’s junk food eating mother and never had the opportunity to learn hunting nor to eat anything else than his mother’s milk. He nevertheless hunts mice, birds, lizards and insects. He’s very found of climbing trees, for fun or for hunting birds… not for eating fruits. Is it because fruits don’t belong to his dietary culture? How does he know that on the contrary, eggs, insects, meat and fish belong to cat’s dietary culture? ;D
Cause and effect are distant in time and space in complex systems, while at the same time there’s a tendency to look for causes near the events sought to be explained. Time delays in feedback in systems result in the condition where the long-run response of a system to an action is often different from its short-run response. — Ronald J. Ziegler

Offline Iguana

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1073 on: August 05, 2010, 09:34:43 pm »
Its kind of like asking, "Why do I crave white rice with soy sauce if I'm not supposed to eat it".

Is there a wilderness area where white rice with soy sauce grows naturally? Perhaps there was some during the paleolithic era?  l)
Cause and effect are distant in time and space in complex systems, while at the same time there’s a tendency to look for causes near the events sought to be explained. Time delays in feedback in systems result in the condition where the long-run response of a system to an action is often different from its short-run response. — Ronald J. Ziegler

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Re: Lex's Journal
« Reply #1074 on: August 05, 2010, 09:52:21 pm »
In the article about ATP there is this statement:

"Skeletal muscle converts chemical energy to mechanical energy with high efficiency (only 30 - 50% waste)."

What does that mean? What is the chemical energy composed of? What is that 50% waste?


Yes, muscles are formidable engines from a thermodynamics point of view with an efficiency of 50 to 70% much better than a car or an airplane engine. This means that they are capable to convert up to 70% of the chemical energy stored in glucose or fatty acid molecules into useful work as a car engine converts about 40% of chemical energy in gasoline into useful work. Glucose, fat or gasoline have a high content of useful chemical energy stored in the chemical bonds of their molecules in the form or electromagnetic and kinetic energy of the particles, electrons and nuclei they are made of. This energy is released when such molecules undergo rearrangement of their atomic components and reaction  with oxygen to end up eventually in the form of carbon dioxide and water. In a car engine this takes place violently in a chaotic combustion as opposed to the much softer low temperature way of energy release involved in the complex cleverly coupled chains of enzymatic reactions in living cells that avoids the transient conversion of the relevant energy into heat at high temperature as in internal combustion engines. This feature in turn permits the higher efficiency of muscles because it evades the limitation in thermal engine efficiency of the second law of thermodynamics.
In both case the energy wasted is always in the form of "dissipation" to heat tranferred by the living organism or the car engine to their environment.        

 

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