Just finished The Obesity Code last night. I found the book very easy to read, and the advantage over the IDM blog is that everything was presented in a cohesive flow building upon information in a logical order.
When I pre-ordered the book a few months ago, I wondered whether it made sense, as I was prepared to read what has been posted on the IDM blog over the past couple years. As mentioned by others, the book focuses on obesity (go figure with that title!?!, yeah an obvious one here!), and the dynamics regarding the obesity epidemic that has become a global health issue over the past 40+ years. With that focus, the book is organized in six parts: 1) The Epidemic, 2) The Calorie Deception, 3) A New Model of Obesity, 4) The Social Phenomenon of Obesity, 5) What's Wrong with Our Diet?, and 6) The Solution. It also provides three Appendices providing specifics for A) Sample Meal Plans (with Fasting Protocols, B) Fasting: A Practical Guide, C) Meditation and Sleep Hygiene to Reduce Cortisol.
The information is a very thorough treatment of all things related to obesity initially touching on the absence over recent years of nutritional knowledge about how to control obesity and building to the associated health symptoms of metabolic syndrome as a part of the obesity issue. Hormonal control is identified as the primary issue with the need to manage Insulin at the top of the list and Cortisol following.
I'll touch on a couple points that stood out to me: 1) It's insulin, insulin, insulin as obesity is a hormonal problem not a caloric problem. This is not a surprise to the many forum members here, as we discuss this frequently. What's different is the thorough presentation and the solutions provided to manage insulin. 2) The concept that Insulin Resistance changes the body weight set point and the process to change it back to normal.
The section on protein and insulin response was very informative with the continued recommendation to moderate protein consumption. The observation that fasting does not result in lean body mass loss is controversial with many varying views, but Fung states that fasting (purposeful elimination of food during a set time period) compared to starvation (involuntary calorie reduction with no known end) has little impact on lean mass particularly after a few days of fasting when HGH levels increase. I realize this has been an active discussion here and elsewhere.
The other observation is the recommendation to eliminate artificial sweeteners, as they are now known to cause insulin spikes and have the ability to cause insulin release even before the food reaches the stomach. Included are several "naturally occurring" sweeteners including stevia, which while having minimal effect on blood sugars is identified along with aspartame as resulting in raised insulin levels "higher even than table sugar." This got my attention.
In summary, I'm adding this book to my library of books that are excellent guides to managing health through healthy eating. The section on timing of meals and fasting is unique in that while I currently have several books that I'll continue to reference, the combination of meal timing and nutritional recommendations is new. If someone asks for a good book on a healthy nutritional approach with the context of history, biology, and sound solutions, I would recommend The Obesity Code. Dr. Fung has a winner here.
Last edited by GRB5111 : Mon, Mar-07-16 at 10:13.