Isn’t weight loss all about calories?

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We’ve been told for decades that in order for us to lose weight, we need to expend more calories than we take in. But is it really that simple?

Watch a segment of the video above, where Dr. Peter Brukner answers (transcript). The full video – with answers from more top low-carb doctors – is available (with captions and transcript) with a free trial or membership:

Isn’t Weight Loss All About Calories? – Doctors Answer Common Questions

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8 comments

  1. 1 comment removed
  2. Mary
    What about low carb high fat for cancer patients. Good or bad
    Reply: #3
  3. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    Hi Mary!

    You can find some interesting reading here:
    https://www.dietdoctor.com/category/health-problems/cancer

    What about low carb high fat for cancer patients. Good or bad

  4. Jacob Howard
    Is this a joke? You're a doctor? You can't just laugh at a question and say it's wrong and provide no reason why, no sources, no explanation, absolutely nothing. This was a very embarrassing video for the website to publish.

    There are studies that support the hypothesis of "calories in, calories out" in fact a study out of The University of Kansas commonly referred to as "The Twinkie Diet" proves the calorie theory. With just this one simple reference, I've provided more scientific content than your entire 1:11 video.

    I hate to be so rude but wow this was a shameful video for your website which has lost credibility. I'm wondering if I should even watch the other videos now? Will the interviewer ask the doctor a question and then doctor just laughs and says no. I'm sorry but as an adult, I need some evidence, some explanation, some data, some references.... try again guys this was bad

    -JACOB HOWARD

    Reply: #5
  5. Peter Biörck Team Diet Doctor
    Hi Jacob!

    Sorry but not everything that we produce has references to studies. But we have collected scientific references supporting a Low Carb diet here:
    https://www.dietdoctor.com/low-carb/science

    Is this a joke? You're a doctor? You can't just laugh at a question and say it's wrong and provide no reason why, no sources, no explanation, absolutely nothing. This was a very embarrassing video for the website to publish.
    There are studies that support the hypothesis of "calories in, calories out" in fact a study out of The University of Kansas commonly referred to as "The Twinkie Diet" proves the calorie theory. With just this one simple reference, I've provided more scientific content than your entire 1:11 video.
    I hate to be so rude but wow this was a shameful video for your website which has lost credibility. I'm wondering if I should even watch the other videos now? Will the interviewer ask the doctor a question and then doctor just laughs and says no. I'm sorry but as an adult, I need some evidence, some explanation, some data, some references.... try again guys this was bad
    -JACOB HOWARD

  6. Geraldine Brophy
    I cannot subscribe to what this doctor says. True 100 calories of wild caught salmon are not the same as 100 calories frosted chocolate cake however I think there is some merit to calories in- calories out. It is more complicated than that. At 4'11" if I were to injest say, 2000 calories a day with little energy expenditure, I would surely gain weight as I have a calorie storage body not a calorie burning body and I am 73 which means my metabolism is slowing. What you don't burn does get stored, it is how humans were designed because back in the "caveman days" man did not sit down to 3 square meals a day with readily available food. A lot of his/her life was spent fasting while foraging for more food. So eating sparingly, exercising (walking while foraging) and fasting while de rigueur, being able to store calories for the fallow times was important to our evolution. Agriculture changed all that. Processed foods changed it more.
    One has to know ones body, how it functions and responds to different foods and exercise. Human bodies may all look quite similar yet function quite differently. So one size ( diet plan, exercise plan) does not fit all.
  7. Cindy Powell Treaster
    Nicely said!
  8. Catherine
    I recommend reading "Good Calories, Bad Calories: Fats, Carbs, and the Controversial Science of Diet and Health" by Gary Taubes. Not only does he give the history behind the theory of calories, he also sites sources. Something else to watch and consider is "That Sugar Film" directed by Damien Gameau, where Damien changes his current diet for what appears to be a REASONABLE diet eating what most consider healthy snacks and keeps his sugar levels to the national norms or 40 g a day.
  9. Olaf
    @ Howard: The mere fact that you are using the Twinky Diet as a reference shows, you are behind your reading. Calories in calories out is a oversimplification of the complexity of our body's biochemistry. A calorie is a measure of energy produced when something is burned. The analogy of calorie in calorie out would be applicable is our body was a simple oven, but it is not. We do more with our food than just burn it. It is stored as glycogen, fat, used for building new cells, enzymes and hormones. The complexity of the issue can not be captured in a 3 minutes video. While the video may appear superficial, the underlying science is there. Howard, I suggest you and those struggling with obesity review Jason Fung's "The etiology of obesity." which you can find on youtube as a short presentation and as a more in depth multipart course. The short presentation can be accessed here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKC3hiyLeRc

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