“Global Obesity Rise Puts UN Goals on Diet-Related Diseases ‘Beyond Reach’

The fight against the global obesity epidemic is a spectacular failure. At the UN summit in 2011 they set the embarrassingly modest goal for 2025 of “not increasing” obesity any more beyond the record-high 2010 levels.

It’s now clear this fight is heading towards disaster. Based on the current trend the 2010 level of 11.5% global adult obesity has already hit 13% and is going to hit 17% by 2025 – or almost 1 billion people.

The Guardian: Global obesity rise puts UN goals on diet-related diseases ‘beyond reach’

So what can we do? It’s clear that the Coca-Cola-funded focus on physical activity and fixation on calories is simply not working. Instead of focusing on the quantity of food we need to put the main focus on the quality of our food.

Drinking soda and regularly eating Western food full of refined carbs leads to obesity. Adding some exercise is not going to stop that any more than it can stop people from getting lung cancer from smoking.

Earlier

Most Americans Eat More Than 15 Hours Per Day

“Young Europeans May Die at Earlier Age Than Their Grandparents, Says WHO”

The American Obesity Epidemic Reaches a New Record

Obesity is “Exploding” in Europe, Except in This Country

31 comments

Top comments

  1. bill
    "...eating Western food full of refined carbs..."

    Again, Dr. Eenfeldt, I ask, "Why do you equivocate?

    It is carbohydrates, not just refined carbohydrates.
    Saying that just gives people an out to continue to eat carbs.

    It's carbs. Get it? Carbs.

    Potatoes are not "refined." Corn on the cob is not "refined."
    Boiled rice is not "refined." Fruit is not "refined." Carrots
    are not "refined." Jams and jellies are not "refined." Whole
    wheat bread is not considered "refined." Honey is not
    "refined." Maple syrup is not "refined." Low fat milk is
    not considered "refined." Apple juice is not considered
    "refined."

    Well, since DietDoctor says these are okay since they are
    not "refined," I can just continue to eat them and I'll be
    okay.

    Why do you continually equivocate?

    Do you understand?

    Replies: #3, #5, #6
    Read more →
  2. Johan
    Normally Dr E talks about "sugar and refined carbs". I don't agree with many of your statements; Boiled (white) rice is refined. Jam contains loads of sugar (the most refined carb). Low fat milk is obviously refined compared to the natural full milk/cream. Juice is certainly a processed product (removing fiber). Wheat is mostly a refined variety if you don't go back to pre-WW2 varieties, and any flour made thereof. Furthermore the main reason for boom of metabolic diseases is unlikely corn on the cob or maple syrup.

    And in the 70's, people could eat potatoes and corn and be just fine. Now with the overload of sugar and junk stricter measures are needed...

    Read more →

All comments

  1. Nate
    I have or have had (Yes some have sadly died.) a few friends like those pictured above. I remember several times being at a dinner party with one or more of them. If the dinner was late being served, they became obviously nervous and hungry. When dinner was served, they more or less discontinued having conversations and concentrated on the food. Then, when desert was served, they could not take their eyes off of it. They buried their faces in it with glee. Some finished their desert and started hungrily eyeing the deserts of others. One 400 pound fella made me think that he was going to bite me to get my desert. This points to the sugar addiction that many people will need to over come to stop the obesity epidemic.

    Oh, yeah, another good example of the sugar addiction is the videos of the comedian Jimmy Kimmel. For his late night talk show, parents tell their kids that they have eaten all of the Halloween candy collected the night before. Upon hearing this, the kids cry, scream, yell, pound things including some heads, say many mean things, etc. It is funny, but it is also really sad. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RK-oQfFToVg

  2. bill
    "...eating Western food full of refined carbs..."

    Again, Dr. Eenfeldt, I ask, "Why do you equivocate?

    It is carbohydrates, not just refined carbohydrates.
    Saying that just gives people an out to continue to eat carbs.

    It's carbs. Get it? Carbs.

    Potatoes are not "refined." Corn on the cob is not "refined."
    Boiled rice is not "refined." Fruit is not "refined." Carrots
    are not "refined." Jams and jellies are not "refined." Whole
    wheat bread is not considered "refined." Honey is not
    "refined." Maple syrup is not "refined." Low fat milk is
    not considered "refined." Apple juice is not considered
    "refined."

    Well, since DietDoctor says these are okay since they are
    not "refined," I can just continue to eat them and I'll be
    okay.

    Why do you continually equivocate?

    Do you understand?

    Replies: #3, #5, #6
  3. Greensleeves
    Bill Andreas has got balance his Paleo audience here, who seem to live on potatoes, rice, honey, maple syrup, sweet kombucha & loads of nut-flour desserts with dried fruit. The Paleofolk freak out if they can't get their almond flour chocolate brownies made with maple syrup.
  4. Johan
    Normally Dr E talks about "sugar and refined carbs". I don't agree with many of your statements; Boiled (white) rice is refined. Jam contains loads of sugar (the most refined carb). Low fat milk is obviously refined compared to the natural full milk/cream. Juice is certainly a processed product (removing fiber). Wheat is mostly a refined variety if you don't go back to pre-WW2 varieties, and any flour made thereof. Furthermore the main reason for boom of metabolic diseases is unlikely corn on the cob or maple syrup.

    And in the 70's, people could eat potatoes and corn and be just fine. Now with the overload of sugar and junk stricter measures are needed...

  5. Apicius
    Bill, I'm not sure I agree with your premise of Dr Eenfeldt being an 'unrefined carb-pusher'. I have not seen any evidence of that in his presentations or speech. Blaming Dr. Eenfeldt for the refined carb-induced obesity and diabetes epidemic is like blaming the firemen for trying to put out the fire of a burning house. What part of LCHF (low carb high fat) diet do you not understand?!?!?!?! This is what Dr Eenfeldt endorses...LCHF!!!!
  6. Potatoes are not "refined." Corn on the cob is not "refined."
    Boiled rice is not "refined." Fruit is not "refined." Carrots
    are not "refined." Jams and jellies are not "refined." Whole
    wheat bread is not considered "refined." Honey is not
    "refined." Maple syrup is not "refined." Low fat milk is
    not considered "refined." Apple juice is not considered
    "refined."

    Well, since DietDoctor says these are okay since they are
    not "refined," I can just continue to eat them and I'll be
    okay.

    Some of these (like the maple syrup you buy in stores) is about as refined a carb as you could find, more or less pure HFCS. Jams etc. are not far behind.

    Furthermore I hardly think the obesity epidemic is *caused* by potatoes or carrots, even if in the context of a low-carb diet it helps to avoid them to reverse obesity, t2dm and the underlying insulin resistance.

    Reply: #7
  7. bill
    Nope. Apparently you have no idea what the general public
    understands about food. Your use of the term "refined carbs"
    just clouds the issue.

    Do you really think that people can parse what is a regular
    carb and what is what you consider a "refined carb"? From
    what I've seen, people can barely determine what is a carb.

    You can deny it all you want, but in general usage, refined
    doesn't mean what you want it to mean. It just makes
    you look like you are equivocating. You say it again and
    again, then you argue with me. Wouldn't it just be easier
    to stick to "low carb high fat" and leave it at that?

    Replies: #8, #9
  8. Johan
    I would assume anyone interested enough to adapt his/her eating habits should be encouraged to get some information and background regarding the philosophy of Low-carb.

    To give an example: It is not encouraged here to use a handful of candy as the source of daily carb intake, but rather a chunk of broccoli or tomatoes for instance.

  9. Wouldn't it just be easier to stick to "low carb high fat" and leave it at that?

    I'm not so concerned with what's easy, what's true is more important.

    If everyone on the planet needed to eat LCHF to avoid obesity a lot of traditional populations couldn't have stayed lean on a high percentage of unrefined carbs in their diet.

    Replies: #10, #11
  10. Vicente
    Out of curiosity,

    Any lean and healthy population on the planet eating a high percentage of whole wheat flour in their diet?

    Any lean and healthy population on the planet eating a high percentage of grain's flour in their diet?

    I don't like either the refined/unrefined terminology. A potato is real food, not "unrefined carbs".

    "If everyone on the planet needed to eat LCHF to avoid obesity a lot of traditional populations couldn't have stayed lean on a high percentage of unrefined carbs in their diet"

    Is the food eaten by those populations "unrefined carbs" or "real food with lots of carbs"?

  11. bill
    Dr. Eenfeldt:

    What is true is that people don't understand
    your narrow discernment of refined carbs vs.
    other carbs when you so blithely state such.

    You seem to be sticking to your guns on this.

    Our last disagreement was over whether you
    agree with Dr. William Davis of Wheat Belly.
    Apparently you think wheat consumption is
    just fine for some people. How does one
    determine whether they are part of the "some
    people" who can eat wheat? What is it you
    disagree with Dr. Davis about?

    Now you appear to be saying that some people
    are just fine consuming high carb. How does
    one determine whether they are among the
    some people who can eat high carb? No doubt
    you've heard people say, "I just feel better when
    I eat bread or pasta or [insert carb food here]."

    Your message has become diluted lately with
    this line of reasoning. And you waste time
    arguing with someone who posts in your
    comment section (me) instead of trying to grasp
    the issue.

    Keep on equivocating if that makes you feel
    better.

  12. Bjarte Bakke Team Diet Doctor
    Vincente,

    The way I see it it's both. Using your potato example, describing it as "real food with lots of carbs", is correct. It's also correct to say that a potato is a food high in "unrefined carbs".

    Bill, I think you're right that many people don't know the difference between "refined" and "unrefined" carbs. I'm not sure that means we shouldn't used the "refined" word though. That would depend on the context.

  13. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    Bill,

    I think it´s crystal clear what kind of food this site promotes:
    http://www.dietdoctor.com/lchf

    In that context I don´t understand why being a rigid carb hater would add credibility?

    Reply: #15
  14. bill
    Since it's bandied about so often here,
    is "refined" defined somewhere on this site?
  15. bill
    "... carb hater..."

    Red herring.

    Reply: #19
  16. Pierre
    refined carbs simply means added sugar
    Reply: #20
  17. Vicente
    If "refined carbs" are the problem, we are saying whole grains are ok.

    People who discuss that idea are "rigid carb haters". That's interesting.

    Is credibility the issue at stake here? "Flexibility", "everything in moderation", talking about calories gives you a lot of credibility.

    I am worried.

    Reply: #18
  18. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    I also think it's interesting to discuss what kind of carbs that can be a problem and also how to interpret words like "refined". :-)

    But Bills argument, "It's carbs. Get it? Carbs.", do not add credibility in my opinion.

  19. Apicius
    Good grief, guys. Think about the context. Centuries and millennia ago, if you wanted to eat oats or spelt or some other grain, you had to sow and harvest and clean and mill by hand. Whatever was stored wasn't even secure, because it became an attraction to mice and other pests. It was a difficult pain in the butt to do it. Same with carby fruits or tubers or whatever. There was a season for picking fruit from the trees or shrubs and then you waited until next year to do it again. Your body would go into fat burning or sugar burning mode, following the cycles of nature. Depending on your genes / ancestry, you will have natural triggers telling your body to eat or stop eating, which was learned through evolution. The sugars in fruit could perhaps mask your satiety signal, so that you can fatten up before the long, harsh winter. Or the Vitamin D levels in your blood influenced by sunlight could signal your body that winter is gone and you need to prepare for spring and summer.

    But today, whatever your genes tell you what to do, it doesn't matter anymore. If you want a bowl of oatmeal or a banana or a big dollop of honey, all you have to do is drag your butt into a petroleum powered vehicle, drive to a store, grab a jar off a shelf and hand the cashier a couple of dollars. It's so easy. The problem here is that these actions do not correspond to the genes your ancesters passed on to you. For me, LCHF and fasting is a revelation. It helps keep the insulin spikes down, and does not trigger my body into fat storing mode. With all the ready made refined carb or natural occurring carb or whatever the heck cheaply available carb, I really don't give a care. I don't eat it as readily as I used to, I no longer crave it like I used to and it no longer has me hungry all day like I used to be.

    Stop focusing on the word "carb", and focus instead on the word "insulin"!

  20. bill
    Dr. E said: "...food full of refined carbs..."

    If he meant "added sugar" why didn't he say that?
    Probably because that is not what he meant.
    It is still unclear what he does mean. But he is not
    telling us. And the community at large still has
    no clue and becomes more fat and sick as a
    result.

    Dr. E, people are trying to follow guidelines as
    well as they can interpret them, but when you
    equivocate as you have, they become confused.
    You're running off the rails.

    Keep the message simple: It's carbs.

    Reply: #21
  21. Apicius
    Bill, consider this... It's not the carbs that's the problem, it's the insulin. We are born with different insulin sensitivity capacities. Just like we are born with different eye colours, or different skin colours.

    Focus on insulin...not the carbs.

    Reply: #22
  22. bill
    Okay, I'll focus on insulin (I agree with Dr. Joseph Kraft
    on the issue). Now, are you telling me that a "refined carb"
    (whatever that is) will elevate insulin differently than a
    baked potato?

    What are you talking about?

    Reply: #23
  23. Apicius
    I think "refined carb" is too broad and vague a category, which is an easy path to circular debate.

    My hunch is that less processed the food leads to less addiction. So, for example, my hunch is that potato chips are more addictive than baked potato, and raw tubers (carrots) even less addictive than baked tubers (baked potato).

    Coupled with the carb issue is other processed foods which cause inflammation, like vegetable oils and margarine.

    On top of that, we then have the culture of eating all day, snacking in between meals, and brainwashed with the idea that breakfast is the most important meal of the day...causing continuous insulinogenic response in our bodies.

    Then when you combine this with the variability in insulin sensitivity capacity in humans, you get different degrees of carb addiction, propensities for obesity and potentials for heart disease and/or diabetes.

    I truly believe focusing on insulin is the way to figure our way out of this big mess.

    Reply: #24
  24. bill
    What has this got to do with Dr. Eenfeldt not
    explaining his use of "refined carbs"?
    Reply: #25
  25. Apicius
    The more refined a carb, the more it is insulinogenic. The more insulinogenic, the higher the propensity for obesity and diabetes.
  26. bill
    Now, are you telling me that a "refined carb"
    (whatever that is) will elevate insulin differently than a
    baked potato?

    Funny, I've not read this definition on dietdoctor.com.
    Are you the official explainer on this site?

    Reply: #27
  27. Apicius
    Bill, seriously. Are you so fixated on potatoes and definition of refined carbs that you are willing to completely miss the more important point of the effect of insulin?
  28. bill
    Do you attack because you can't or you
    won't answer my question?
  29. chris c
    When my mother was young there were no "epidemics" of obesity, diabetes and other metabolic diseases. "Everyone knew" that if you wanted to lose weight you cut back on starches, and that diabetics ate low carb diets. Dieting was still often called "banting".

    When I was young there were STILL no "epidemics" and everyone STILL knew that you lost weight by reducing starch and that diabetics avoided carbs. The few "fat kids" at school had it blamed on "glands" ie. endocrine, not gluttony and sloth.

    It's a sobering thought that as my generation dies out (often prematurely) there'll be no-one left who remembers when low fat was NOT the standard protocol.

    It's entertaining to see Tim Noakes et al. reusing the term "banting" nearly a century later.

  30. Chris the Barbarian
    Of course, don't you see it Apicius? Carbs are the devil ;). All the normal, lean people who actually can live with a higher amount of carbs are just lying. LCHF or bust. One Diet fits all... If it only would be so easy.

    It isn't that easy, and I am really glad that Dr. Eenfeldt isn't also on the Carb-Hate-Train. Carb-sensitive individuals should try a lchf diet and experience the benefits - others should follow the diet they can live happily and healthy with.

  31. Vicente
    Jeff Volek:

    "According to a recent JAMA paper (1), the average adult in the US is prediabetic. By definition these people have insulin resistance, which means they have some degree of carbohydrate intolerance. From a historical perspective, this principle stems from the last 2 million years of our evolution when most of us had little access to dietary carbohydrate. Now that we are exposed to a lot of it, the majority of us are showing signs of metabolic dysfunction."

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