Published under the original title of “The Obesity Code”, ” The Weight Loss Code ” is a book by Dr. Jason Fung, nephrologist and creator of the Intensive Dietary Management program .
Dr. Fung is known to be one of the advocates of the practice of intermittent fasting to lose weight and defeat metabolic syndrome. In this article, I analyze his book and explain what I think.
JASON FUNG’S LOSS CODE: INTRODUCTION
Dr. Fung introduces this book by explaining that about nutrition and the problem of how to beat growing obesity you hear everything and the opposite of everything.
- That carbohydrates are the cause of obesity.
- Protein is the cause of obesity.
- Fat is the cause of obesity.
However, many studies on obesity have been done in animals, and not just in humans.
Other studies, however, conducted on humans, prove to be very limited because they are simply associative studies.
That is, through observation and epidemiological data, these studies do nothing but find an association between the consumption of certain foods and the risk of disease or obesity.
THE LIMIT OF NUTRITION STUDIES
The problem, explains Fung, is that these studies don’t take other variables into account.
For example: when in the 1940s it was assumed that fat was the cause of cardiovascular disease (dietary cholesterol leading to high cholesterol, for example), it was not taken into account how much smoking affected those same diseases.
And studies that instead considered the consumption of alcohol, smoking, and a sedentary lifestyle, then established that those who ate less saturated fat were more likely to have a heart attack.
So in essence, the doctor explains that the only studies on nutrition that it makes sense to consider are those conducted on humans but which can identify causes or at least a significant correlation between certain foods and the risk of obesity.
JASON FUNG’S WEIGHT LOSS CODE: WHAT THE BOOK CONSISTS OF
The book is divided into six parts.
- In the first part, Dr. Fung explains how the obesity epidemic arises, making a distinction between immediate and ultimate causes. In essence, the immediate causes are those that coincide with the symptom. For example : since diabetes leads to high blood sugar (immediate cause) then one may think that eliminating carbohydrates can eliminate diabetes or that giving insulin to patients can be a cure. But diabetes is a more complex disease than that, and Fung explains that giving insulin only aggravates the disease. Therefore, the ultimate cause of diabetes should be sought, and the same goes for obesity. In obesity, for example, the immediate cause could be that of a high-calorie diet. But this rules out all hormonal problems that are related to obesity.
So if I diet an obese and focus only on calories, this person may initially lose weight, but if I exclude the other problems that caused his overweight, it is very likely that this same person will regain the lost weight.
- The second part deals with precisely what are the limits in considering only calories as the cause of obesity, and speaks of the “supremacy of calories”.
- In the third and fourth part he addresses the problem of a new model of obesity and its social impact.
- The fifth part analyzes the factors that led to a change in our diet compared to that of the early twentieth century. Here Fung, for example, points out how the consumption of drinks rich in fructose and the business of sweeteners have aggravated the problem of obesity, as well as the spread of vegetable oils rich in polyunsaturated fats, wrongly judged as good fats.
- In the sixth part the solution is finally addressed, explaining what the Weight Loss Code consists of.