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The Starch Solution (Dr John McDougall) diet - any views?

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Management' started by Sasha, May 25, 2013.

  1. Orla

    Orla Senior Member

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    Yes is the quick answer to that. Apparently Olive Oil is not so much heart healthy as just less unhealthy than other fats. If Olive oil replaces a worse fat (e.g. a trans fat or something) it will improve the persons diet, but this doesn't mean adding it is always good, it is cutting out the worse fat that might be where it would do most good. Olive oil has a high enough amount of saturated fat at 14%. I think I read that a study with monkeys showed heart disease when fed a diet high in Olive Oil.

    Brenda has already mentioned the problem with oils becoming rancid.

    As well as this problem, and the one you mentioned Sasha about empty calories (and add to that high calorie density - that is a lot of calories for a small volume) apparently oils in the diet can reduce blood flow (which can be already impaired in ME/CFS, so I can see that logically reducing oils could help us).

    This is a clip from a talk by Jeff Novick about problems with olive oil

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfBKauKVi4M

    and this is another one on oil http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbALgjmZUek

    I find his stuff the most convincing. Unfortunately the best talk by him which I saw online is no longer on it, but he does have a few DVD's for sale from various places including Amazon. He has a lot of free written information here http://www.drmcdougall.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=22 but I find it easier to watch the videos.

    I didn't know what to think about the no oil thing at first. I wasn't totally convinced but reduced my use initially where I knew it would be easy (e.g. "stir-fry" with water instead of oil, and just leaving it out of many recipes where it was just added in). But as I have listened to more talks, and read a bit more, I am more convinced that it could be a problem and I have gotten stricter. I have gotten some good recipe books with tips and alternatives to fats in recipes, and this has helped, and this is a good website here http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/ If you boil any veg in water you can keep the water and re-use it as stock.

    It has taken me a while to learn what to avoid and what to eat (and what to buy and what to avoid). It feels more like second nature now. I think you are doing well to have cut out what you have so far, so I would just go at your own pace in making changes and learning new things, as it is hard for us to put energy into making these sort of changes.

    Caldwell Esselstyn is a heart specialist that is very anti "free" oils (though he eats ground whole flax seeds for Omega 3's). As far as I can remember, from watching some of his talks, oils can damage the blood vessel walls and this damage can be cumulative over time. I have a book of his but have not read it yet (other than use some of the recipes in it).

    I can definitely see that theoretically that cutting out oils could help us, as a lot of us seem to have impaired blood flow and basically some sort of vascular abnormalities, but whether it makes a big difference in symptoms for us to cut out oils I suppose we have to just try it and see. Unfortunately for us maybe we have a few things going on causing symptoms, so even if we do one thing that helps maybe it will only help a bit in terms of symptom reduction?
     
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  2. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    Thanks, Orla, that's a really helpful post - I'm going to print it off to study it properly and follow those links.

    Unfortunately, Jeff Novick's DVDs are only available in a format that only plays on US machines so I can't watch them but I'll look at those links. I wish he'd write a book! I've looked at that forum but it's hard work - the information is so scattered.
     
  3. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    Well, I'm several weeks in now and I'm happier on this diet than on my previous one, largely because my blood sugar seems to be under better control which is is weird because I'd always thought you needed a concentrated (animal) protein source for that. I have my big bowl of morning quinoa and that's me set up for the next five hours!

    I'm going dairy-free from today.

    I wouldn't say my health has improved overall yet but I like the diet and I'm pleased not to get so hungry so often.
     
  4. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    Good to hear Sasha. I quit dairy three months ago and think I am better without it, in fact the thought of milk makes me feel rather sick. The biggest improvement seems to be my moods on my plant based diet, but also my heart, but with this heat atm it is not so easy to tell. I am not getting depressed at all now.

    My BP has gone right down, I think it was a supplement I was using but can't remember which one now. I have gluten free oatmeal for breakfast but might have quinoa for a change,

    Grains should be chewed really well - up to 50 times so macrobiotics advise but I have never managed that long! Also soaking grains nuts and seeds is a good idea. I don't feel hungry on this diet but when I was eating more meat and fat I was hungry.

    I knew a woman with MS who was only having a teaspoonful of walnut oil a day and she was running about after being in a wheelchair.

    I am eating chia seeds for oils and a teasp of olive oil on salads. My skin is fine, most dryness is gone.

    Some macrobiotic condiments make the diet more interesting, like roasted sesame seeds ground with roasted sea salt. This is very nice on rice. There is umboshi plum vinegar too which is very tasty.

    Grated cucumber left to drain with a teaspoon of salt rubbed in, then rinsed and squeezed with a few drops of umboshi vinegar is very nice with grains.

    I have had to stop millet which I love mashed with cauliflower dipped in buckwheat flour and fried in a speck of toasted sesame oil but it was slowing my thyroid and therefore my weight loss down.

    Cook pulses with a small amount of seaweed for the minerals.
     
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  5. Orla

    Orla Senior Member

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    Hi Sasha and all, this is a really interesting talk by Jeff Novick on fats

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcKwBzKJQSw

    I don't know how long it will stay online so for anyone who is interested it might be worth watching as soon as they can.
     
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