Why we get sick – and
how to prevent it.
Do you want longer life? Be
careful what you wish for. In Greek myth, the goddess who pleaded with
Zeus to make her handsome (but human) lover immortal gained, as the
decades and the centuries passed, a dried out gibbering husk of a man
who lived on beyond function, beyond pain, and beyond endurance.
Are we making, unwittingly,
the same Faustian bargain? Are we, in our search for healthier and
better lives, blundering down the same blind alley? It could be that the industries of pleasure and hope – the food,
pharmaceutical and slimming industries – have in fact created an
infernal triangle within whose perimeter fence we are now confined,
growing sicker, fatter, and ever more drug-dependent.
The food industry offers us
more choice than ever before, with hundreds of new product launches
every year, yet Type B malnutrition (a pattern of malnutrition
characterised as multiple micronutrient depletion) is rife. The
mammoth US Department of Agriculture Ongoing Survey of Micronutrient
Intakes, and many similar studies, all show the same bleak picture. We
no longer obtain even the RNI
values of vitamins and minerals from our diets; and the newer
micronutrients such as lycopene, lutein and the flavonoids, which do
not yet have RNI values, show the same depressing picture.
We are short of so many
micronutrients, but hardly short of calories. While the slimming
industry grows fat – to the tune of 2 billion pounds per year – by
offering us delusions of thinness, we are getting larger. In the last
25 years, obesity in England has increased 4-fold from 5 to 22% of the
population, and is projected to engulf 1 in 4 of us by 2010. Fad diets
come and go, but hardly leave a trace; and the impact of our
increasing size, which spills over into increased risks of heart
disease, diabetes, cancer, renal failure and other unpleasant
diseases, already generates health costs of 7.4 billion pounds / year.
It will break the Health Service if allowed to continue unchecked.
The message is very clear. The
foods we eat are far from the diet we were designed to live on. We are
paying an increasingly heavy price for this great and unplanned
dietary experiment that we have all, however unwittingly, agreed to
participate in. The slimming industry has been unable to keep its
promises. The drug industry will not help either.
Are Drugs and Antibiotics the way forward?
We spend around 1.2% of our
GDP on drugs - around £140/year for every man, woman and child in the
country. Our much-lauded pharmaceutical industry makes a trade surplus
of Billions each year; yet the industry is in a deepening productivity
crisis which has not been helped by their Gadarene rush for growth.
The investors are clear on this point; in terms of payback, the
returns per dollar invested in pharma have fallen behind IT, defence,
and other key sectors.
Desperate to keep the
stock-holders happy, even the largest companies have resorted to
spinning their clinical results; it is an open secret in the academic
world that the pharmaceutical industry only publishes studies with
favourable outcomes, while the results of negative studies are
systematically suppressed. Scientific journals and medical groups have
been badgering the industry for years to publish all their results, so
that proper judgement can be made on new drugs. However, it was only
when New York attorney-general Elliot Spitzer accused GlaxoSmithKline
of fraudulently suppressing information about the lack of efficacy and
the high incidence of adverse effects of their antidepressant Paxil in
children, that the industry grudgingly started to concede that full
disclosure must be followed.
This long-standing lack of
transparency has lead to severe distortions in medical practice. For
example, many children suffered severe adverse effects from a drug
that their doctors would not have prescribed if they had known the
full story. At the other end of the age scale, industry-funded studies
have boosted the sales of anti-Alzheimer’s drugs which have now been
shown by an impartial, NHS-funded study to be almost totally
ineffective, and far less cost-effective than providing better social
The blame for this mass
deception of the public has little to do with the scientists and
clinicians involved in developing new drugs. It lies closer to the
marketing and financial elements within the industry; whose main
motivation is to boost the flagging rates of return in the
pharmaceutical sector for example - no new strain of antibiotic
has been discovered since 1987 as it is not considered cost effective.
Prime Minister Cameron recently (July 2014) drew attantion to this and
called for further research and hinted at Government funding...
But pharmaceutical break-throughs
are getting fewer and further between. Products spun off from
research into the human genome are unlikely to redress the balance
books, and neither will the fancy new model of pharma networking,
whereby the drug companies out-source non-core elements of their
These ‘breakthroughs’ cannot
do the trick, because Big Pharma is knocking on the wrong door. A
glance through any pharmacopeia reveals that we have many hundreds of
specific and potent drugs - so potent, in fact, that iatrogenic
illness (disease caused by the side effects of drugs), is now the 4th
leading cause of death. Yet with the notable exception of the
antibiotics, we have hardly any cures. Almost all the drugs we use are
palliatives which sooth or suppress the symptoms of disease but are
unable to cure the underlying condition, which generally continues to
Could they have they got it all wrong?
This simple truth shows
through in our actuarial tables. Life expectancy has increased by an
average of 2 years per decade for the last half century, largely due
to public health measures, but our health expectancy has not kept
pace. In 2001, British men could reasonably hope to make 75, while
women scored a respectable 79.9. Unfortunately, men can expect to
develop the first clinical signs of chronic degenerative illness at
the age of 65, with women beginning to fall ill around 4 years later;
so that both sexes experience a ‘health gap’, a period of increasing
medical dependency, of around a decade.
To make matters worse, more of
us are falling ill at ever-younger ages. Once uncommon, asthma and
allergy are now so prevalent that the Royal College of Surgeons issued
a despairing statement in 2003 to the effect that the NHS could no
longer cope. The life-time risk of breast cancer in women was 1 in 36
when I was at medical school in the 70’s and 80’s, but has now reached
1 in 9. Data from Cancer Research UK shows that the incidence of
cancer overall increased by a third in the last two decades alone:
from 30% of the population in 1981, to 40% by 1996. Age-related
macular degeneration, once a disease of old age, is now commonly
diagnosed in middle-aged subjects – and there are plenty of other
examples of increased disease and accelerated ageing, from autism at
one end of the age spectrum to Alzheimer’s at the other.
To make matters worse yet
there is a developing epidemic of Type 2 diabetes, no longer called
adult-onset diabetes because it is occurring ever more frequently in
young adults and adolescents. According to figures provided by the
British Diabetes Association and related groups, this condition may
affect anything between 5 and 8 million Britons by the year 2010. This
disease of our time, closely linked to weight gain, insufficient
exercise and a poor diet, is coming to be regarded as a form of
accelerated ageing which brings forward the onset of vascular disease
(including heart attacks and strokes), renal failure, peripheral nerve
damage, impotence and blindness.
As a consequence, it is hardly
surprising that the numbers of adults and children who describe
themselves as chronically ill has risen alarmingly from 21% in 1972,
to 45% in 2012; and that spending on healthcare has risen
remorselessly from 3.9% of our GDP in 1960 to 6.9% in 1994 and
is approaching 10% in 2014.
But have the economic,
technological and medical successes of the last century given us, at
least, peace of mind? Hardly … According to the UK Office for National
Statistics, around 1 in 3 of the population have psychological
symptoms. A very small number, perhaps 2% of the population, are seen
by psychiatrists, but millions live below the threshold of clinically
definable mental illness in a state of unhappiness and insecurity. 1
in 5 women suffer from anxiety or depressive disorders, as do 1 in 7
men – a figure which is probably lowered by under-reporting. The
widening gulf between the shape we’re in, and the shape we’d like to
be, in an increasingly commercialised and objectified world, makes
matters worse for many; as shown by the increasing incidence of eating
disorders in both sexes.
Something is manifestly going
wrong with the nation’s health, its psyche and its waistline. The
support systems we rely on are clearly not helping – and are making
our problems worse by ignoring their cause, and concentrating on the
most superficial of symptoms. Our guns are pointing out to sea, but
the enemy is coming from overland.
right question... and you may get the right answer
There is an alternative
strategy; one which focuses on the causes of illness, obesity and
unhappiness, and offers a fundamentally curative model for these and
many other health and life problems. This is the emerging science of
pharmaco-nutrition, a new science now being developed and taught at a
number of British Universities and Royal Colleges.
fundamentally different from pharmaceutical medicine. It does not suggest that there
is a pill for every ill. Rather, it marries the old wisdom that we are
what we eat, with the scientific disciplines of pharmacology,
biochemistry and epidemiology, to produce novel diets and multiple
micronutrient regimes that re-configure the body, and its complex
metabolic workings. No more of the ‘magic bullets’ that wound so many
of us, but support systems, free of adverse effects and curative in a
way that drugs, by definition, cannot be.
The foundations for this new
science have already been laid, and published in many thousands of
research papers. This book draws the research findings together and
translates them into simple guidelines which you can use to improve
your chances of staying younger, healthier and slimmer, for longer.
Your Dynamic Body
Very few of us – perhaps 1 in
10,000 – die of old age. The vast majority of us sicken and die
prematurely, picked off by ‘natural causes’ long before our biological
life span has run its course. Cell culture studies, and the small but
growing proportion of individuals who live on healthily into their
second century, indicate that our true life span may lie somewhere
between 110 and 120.
But why is such a long and
healthy life such a rarity? Why do so few of us live out our
We used to die, in the main,
of infection, starvation or trauma. Twentieth century medicine and
social planning have scored significant victories against these
killers – although the infectious diseases show signs of making a
comeback, due to the wasteful way we use antibiotics and the prospect
of emergent viruses.
At the time of writing,
however, the major causes of death are the chronic degenerative
diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, conditions
worsened by the parallel epidemic of overweight and obesity. What we
need now is a 21st century medicine which will slow or
stabilise these conditions, prevent them from making our last years
difficult, extend our healthy middle years, and allow us to remain
physically young into our 50’s, 60’s and even beyond.
The new model of healthcare
which has the potential to do just this is called pharmaco-nutritional
medicine; and like much good new science, it is based on a
surprisingly small number of simple and self-evident truths.
Firstly, all living tissue is
dynamic – that is, it is constantly repairing and renewing itself.
Skin cells are sloughed off and replaced every day; red blood cells
last for around 4 months before they wear out and new ones take their
place; you grow a new skeleton every ten years or so. This type of
change is imperceptible and constant. Cartilage in the joints is
eroded and regenerated, atheroma is constantly deposited in the artery
walls and is constantly being removed, calories are taken into the
body in food every day, and every day transformed into heat, movement,
and all the businesses of life.
Secondly, the body has
incredible powers of regeneration and renewal, forged in the
evolutionary fires of our Neolithic past. If that were not the case,
we would not have survived as a species. Our joints would wear thin by
the age of 20, our arteries would solidify by 30, and our brains would
burn out by the age of 40. And for most of us, that is simply not the
But thirdly, it is equally
true that as the years pass, these types of degenerative change
eventually gather momentum, and emerge in increasing numbers of us as
clinical disease. This trend is so commonplace as to almost beyond
questioning – but I think we need to ask why this pattern is so
prevalent. Just what is so different about old age?
During the first 20 years of
life we are dominated by the processes of growth and renewal - a
condition sometimes described as ‘anabolic dominance’. As we age,
however, growth and renewal slow, and the forces of breakdown and
decay accelerate. By the time we have reached the roaring 40’s they
are predominant, and we have shifted from ‘anabolic dominance’ to
We are now typically storing
more calories than we can use, and the majority of us begin to put on
weight. Our ability to heal is compromised; wounds, for example, take
longer to mend, and are more likely to become infected. In general,
the rate at which we can re-build and renew our tissues declines, and
is overtaken by the processes of decay. Little by little, therefore,
tissue damage begins to accumulate, rather like the slow erosion of a
landscape; whether we are talking about the slow silting of an artery,
the equally slow thinning of the cartilage in a hip or knee; or the
silent dying of our brain cells. We grow slow, ill and fat, and by the
time we emerge, blinking, into the 6th decade of life, 5
out of 6 of us have the symptoms of one or more of the degenerative
diseases, and the majority of us are overweight.
Age-linked metabolic imbalance
A number of theories have been
advanced to try to explain this shift from anabolic to catabolic
dominance. The accumulation of genetic damage leading to a failure of
tissue renewal held sway for some time; until it was pointed out that
many types of tissue breakdown are extremely active, and if the
breakdown side of the health equation ran down at the same speed as
the renewal side (which the genetic damage model implied), this would
not lead to catabolic dominance but a general slowing of both
breakdown and renewal. This is not what we see.
An interesting new theory
which explains the evidence rather more convincingly, in my view, is
termed ‘Age-linked Metabolic Imbalance’. This theory is based on the
concept of Type B malnutrition. And now for a slight deviation, in
order to explain these new terms …
The processes of growth and
renewal depend on the presence, in the body, of a number of vital
co-factors derived from the diet. These are, broadly, the classical
vitamins and minerals, or trace elements – such as vitamins C and D,
and the minerals iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc. These
micronutrients can be thought of as anabolic co-factors. Conversely,
the processes of breakdown and decay are, in health, held in check by
many of the newer micronutrients such as lycopene, lutein, the
sterols, the flavonoids and the fermentable starches. These compounds
can be reasonably considered to be anti-catabolic agents. A perfectly
healthy diet would provide optimal amounts of all these
micronutrients, and keep the processes of tissue wear and renewal in
Unfortunately, a great deal of
evidence has emerged showing that the majority of us are depleted in
both the anabolic co-factors, and the anti-catabolic agents. This is
not the near-absolute absence of a micronutrient that causes a
deficiency disease (such as scurvy, an example of Type A
Malnutrition), but a pattern of sub-optimal intakes of most of the
micronutrients, often associated with calorie excess. This is Type B
malnutrition; and it is emerging as a likely common cause of the
majority of the degenerative diseases, and much of the process of
ageing as we know it.
TYPE B Malnutrition
The reasons for this prevalent
pattern of multiple micronutrient depletion are structural and well
established. Perhaps the single most important cause of Type B
malnutrition is that we don’t eat enough. This sounds paradoxical,
given that we are getting fatter, but we actually eat far less than we
used to. Read, for example, accounts written by the diarists James
Boswell or Samuel Pepys of the vast lunches and dinners that were
regularly consumed by our relatively recent ancestors. But then
remember that those diners and lunchers walked or rode horseback where
we drive, climbed stairs where we take elevators, and burned calories
to keep warm where we turn up the central heating.
Looked at through a longer
lens, humans were designed to live active lives, and to consume
between 3 and 4 thousand calories per day. No longer hunter-gatherers,
we live sedentary lives, working at a computer screen during the day
and basking in the glow of the cathode ray tube at night. The result
is that we burn, on average, slightly fewer than 2,000 calories a day.
Our appetites have indeed shrunk, but not quite to match; thus leaving
most of us in a slight but persistent state of calorie excess, which
explains, over time, the weight gain.
But by cutting our food
intakes in half, we have at a stroke halved our intakes of many of
essential micronutrients. To make matters worse, our dietary habits
are out of joint. We no longer eat very much unprocessed foods, but
increasingly rely on pre-processed, pre-cooked and ready to eat meals
and snacks which in many cases are significantly less nutritious than
the original ingredients would have been.
These and other factors have
dramatically reduced our intakes of such valuable micronutrients as
flavonoids, sterols, phospholipids, selenium and resistant starch;
resulting in the wide-spread problem of Type B malnutrition we see
today. But does it matter? Well, yes ….
A person who is depleted in
anabolic co-factors and the anti-catabolic agents is heading
for trouble. Tissue renewal is down, tissue decay and breakdown are
up; he or she is now catabolically dominant, accumulating tissue
damage, and heading towards clinical illness.
To make matters worse, Type B
malnutrition generally worsens as we age, due to such factors as
dental problems, difficulties with swallowing, a deteriorating sense
of taste and appetite, and often reduced finances. This neatly
explains why we become progressively more catabolically dominant, and
ever more likely to become diseased, as the years and decades pass.
This also explains why the
degenerative diseases, and indeed obesity, have such long latency
periods. Coronary artery disease, Type 2 diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s
and osteoporosis do not occur overnight, although the first symptoms
might do. These are slowly progressing conditions, which develop for
decades before symptoms finally emerge.
In other words, the majority
of apparently healthy adults are, in reality, pre-ill. They contain,
in their bodies, the growing seeds of the illness(es) which will
eventually become overt, and perhaps kill them. Fat is accumulating,
arteries are beginning to silt up, bones and joints are thinning,
brain cells are dying; leading inevitably, eventually, to obesity, a
heart attack, osteoporotic fracture, or clinically confirmed dementia.
By that very late stage, of course, once symptoms have begun to
emerge, the ability of the current medical system to put things right
is very limited and generally restricted to suppressing the symptoms
of the disease.
This is a truly bizarre
situation. It is as if we taught car mechanics to carry out crash
repairs, but nothing of maintenance. It is an inheritance from the
early successes of pharmaceutical medicine, the sulpha drugs and
penicillins which cured infectious diseases, the dominant diseases of
that time, so effectively, and laid the foundations of the
pharmaceutical industry of today. Unfortunately, they also created
models of disease treatment which are no longer appropriate to the
diseases which are important now – the degenerative diseases. Even
more unfortunately, these ideas still underpin the ruinously expensive
system of crisis-management medicine currently on offer. They hugely
influence the medical curriculum, dominate medical post-qualification
training, and determine the overwhelming bulk of clinical research.
Drugs may not be the answer
Pharmaceutical models which
developed from the concept of ‘magic bullets’ (drugs which kill
micro-organisms but do not hurt the host), and the closely related
idea of specificity (find a target unique to the bacterium, which does
not occur in the host), are fine when dealing with an infectious
illness. They are not the right tools, however, for dealing with a
degenerative illness caused by adverse life-style factors, and
consequently many metabolic imbalances, going subtly wrong over many
years. The huge increases in obesity, diabetes, asthma, cancer,
neurotic disorders and other diseases, the recent declines in life
expectancy reported in parts of the former Soviet Union, Italy and the
UK, and the persistent failure of the pharmaceutical model to find
cures for any of these problems, tells us that we need a new way of
looking at health; one which takes life-style and nutritional factors
Sadly, despite the fact that
the majority of risk factors and protective factors for degenerative
disease are nutritional, nutrition as a subject is almost absent from
medical schools. And because micronutrients are generic (ie they are
not owned by any one company), there is little commercial incentive to
do the studies that would provide the levels of proof that are
required, for example, in the licensing of new drugs.
Luckily, this situation is
beginning to change. Literally thousands of small-scale studies have
begun to chart the detailed relationships between diet,
micro-nutrition and health; and have recently given birth to the new
science of pharmaco-nutrition.
Pharmaco-nutrition starts by
analysing the multiple metabolic errors that drive, for example,
coronary artery disease. It then cross-references these against the
known pharmacology of food derivates; and finally assembles a
comprehensive micronutritional support programme that rectifies all
the metabolic errors, or as many as can be identified. This is not a
magic bullet, but a comprehensive support programme. Using this
approach the chemistry of the blood and the physiology of the blood
vessel walls can be re-programmed and re-configured in a way that
effectively immunises the owner against cardio-vascular disease. If
disease is present it can be forced to regress, as the catabolic
processes that drive it are damped and the healing processes that
clean and remodel the arterial beds are supported and strengthened.
Another example of the gains
that can be made by using comprehensive support programmes as opposed
to magic bullets, can be found in the area of heart disease, where
Professor Dean Orjnish has been able to demonstrate that atherome in
affected blood vessels can be made to regress (shrink) by dietary
In a more general sense, the
pharmaco-nutritional approach teaches us that the pattern of decline
that generally runs in parallel with ageing, is not inevitable.
Diseases we thought of as inherently progressive are not; atheroma can
be made to shrink, worn joints can be re-built. These diseases are
called degenerative because, in a typical patient on a typically
Western diet, they do worsen with age. But to assume that because this
is what we always see, this is the way things must be, is a serious
and all-too common philosophical error.
This, then, is a hugely
significant shift in the way we think about, and treat, illness and
the symptoms of ageing. I personally believe that pharmaco-nutrition
will prove to be as effective in treating and curing the degenerative
diseases as the antibiotics were in curing the bacterial illnesses.
And if that sounds too radical for the average doctor, remind them how
the antibiotics were initially scorned by many practitioners, who felt
that the infectious diseases were both natural (they are), and
untreatable (they clearly are not).
Weight Gain - Weight Loss
The principles of tissue
dynamism, and the slow emergence of problems driven by slight
imbalances sustained over long periods of time, also give us new ways
of looking at the problems of weight gain.
The changes in our eating
habits which have gathered speed over the last half century have moved
us away from a high micronutrient, high fibre, low GL
and low energy density diet, which encourages satiation; towards a low
micronutrient, low fibre diet with an excessive GL and high energy
density, which does not. When the fast food franchises, with their
finely honed commercial instincts, introduced super-sizing, they made
matters worse. Even the stately Food Standards Authority has abandoned
the idea that there are ‘no bad foods, only bad diets’; and admitted
that there are ‘relatively unhealthy food options’.
To make matters worse, cheap
energy and new technologies have reduced our need to be physically
active, so we burn fewer calories; cars, lifts and remote controls
have cut our calorific requirements by nearly a third in the last
generation alone. Bear with me while I re-make this fundamental point:
diet as we may, it has become almost impossible NOT to consume a
hundred or so calories per day more than we now need. One hundred
calories is nothing. But that is 700 calories too many each week, 3000
excess calories a month, 35,000 excess calories a year; and so,
gradually, imperceptibly, we leave our slim, youthful bodies behind
and accumulate the avoirdupois of middle age.
Is this all the individual’s
fault? Some commentators have tried to portray the tide of overweight
and obesity as a collective failure of moral fibre and
self-discipline; but in reality, this tells us more about the
speaker’s prejudices and moral values than the real nature of the
Seen from a socio-political
perspective, it is fairly easy to identify a number of structural and
cultural changes which have made it progressively harder for us to
maintain normal weight. Some of the more objective groups working in
this area have paved the way; the American Heart Association, for
example, has come to understand that weight problems are social rather
than personal, and has distanced itself from the use of specific
pharmaceutical products such as the amphetamine derivatives which
previously sold so well, but achieved so little. In the face of the
serious increase in overweight and obesity in the US, and the tidal
wave of diabetes and all its complications that are following in its
wake, the AHA recently issued a series of recommendations which move
directly into social engineering, including:
Bus stops to be further
Waiting times for lifts to
Physical activity to be
mandatory at all levels of the educational system.
Fast foods and soft drinks
to be banned from all school campuses.
Car parks to be sited
further from malls, offices etc..
recommendations have been vigorously opposed by an array of special
interest groups, from the major soft drink manufacturers to the oil
lobbyists, and are unlikely to be adopted. Sadly, it seems likely that
the same situation will prevail on this side of the Atlantic also.
The UK government
has robustly criticised by the Commons Health Select Committee, who
issued a statement saying that due to a comprehensive failure of
governmental policy, ‘the epidemic of overweight has produced the
first generation of children who will die before their parents as a
direct consequence of their childhood obesity.’ This devastating
prediction was immediately countered by the food industry, and the
government’s subsequent responses gave a clear indication that if any
controls are to be implemented, they will be postponed, diluted and
In the meantime we continue to
put on weight, and, thanks in no small measure to the stream of
articles and books selling this or the other fad diet, still believe
that it is natural to gain weight as we age, and that this is a
natural process, facilitated by character flaws.
perspective, however, shows us that this is not the case; and that the
excess weight that so many of us gradually acquire can be persuaded,
with time, to recede like the snows of winter. At the same time,
pharmaco-nutritional programming can halt and reverse many of the
other signs of ageing, and help to uncover the individual’s true
physical and mental potential.
But there remains one glaring
paradox in this argument, well-known to those who take an interest in
anti-ageing. If Type B malnutrition, caused largely by our declining
energy needs and food intakes, is a cause of ageing, how can we
explain the large body of work, popularised by scientists such as
Professor Roy Walford at UCLA, which shows that sustained calorie
restriction extends life-span in most species?
The paradox has been neatly
explained by some very recent research by Drs Owino and Goldspink at
the Royal Free Hospital School and University College of London. The
role of insulin in helping to regulate blood glucose has long been
known, but this fascinating hormone has now been discovered to have
another, equally important function; it acts as a master regulator
which activates many of the inter- and intra-cellular sequences that
drive cellular ageing, and can thus be regarded as an ageing hormone.
This explains the general
acceleration of the ageing process that occurs in diabetes. It also
explains why calorie restriction slows ageing, because the calorie
restricted diets reduce insulin secretion, and related cellular
changes such as expression of the insulin-like growth factor 1
And so we come full circle.
Although a few highly motivated individuals such as Professor Walford
might be willing to maintain a restricted calorie diet over periods of
many years, most of us would be unable to follow suit. But now we know
that it is not calorie restriction per se that extends life but
reduced insulin secretion, a normal calorie low-carbohydrate diet
(which also reduces insulin secretion), begins to look like a more
attractive anti-ageing, health-promoting option.
Even 2,000 calories / day,
however, is not enough to ward off Type B malnutrition, the other main
driver of the ageing process; which is why badly designed low-carb
diets, which make Type B malnutrition worse, are not good for your
health. To the low-carb baseline, therefore, add a comprehensive
micronutrient support programme specifically designed to restore and
optimise your micronutrient profile.
Unfortunately, the low-carb
diets that have thus far caught the public imagination fail in two
major aspects. They have not understood the recent developments in
pharmaco-nutrition, and are seriously flawed in their micronutrient
content. Equally seriously, they have failed to incorporate the most
important element of carbohydrate research of the last 50 years,
namely the new classification of digestible vs fermentable
Just as we now know that not all fats are bad, and in
fact some are essential, so it is with carbohydrates. Some of them –
particularly the fermentable, non-glycemic carbohydrates – are
essential for health, and the traditional low-carb diets, which do not
understand this key fact, are actively harmful.
The new science and the new
diet, therefore, has moved on from the crude ‘low-carb’ model to a
more sophisticated and finely-tuned approach. This is low in calories,
high in micronutrients, and combines low glycemic load with the right