Brief descriptions of slides: Abbreviated seminar “Your Metabolism”

1. Basic outline
2. Basic definitions
3. Low metabolism may be a global health concern
4. And a national concern, manifested as diseases correlated to overweight
5. Some studies show faster mortality in those who successfully lose weight
6. Six-year follow up with “Biggest Loser” contestants shows severe loss in metabolic rate
7. The ~500 Cal metabolic suppression can only be accounted for by skeletal muscle
8. The brain has a powerful drive for sugar, indicating the value of sugar to the brain
9. Low-Cal, low-carb, or both, can leave you with an empty tank, limiting the function of the engine i.e. lowering metabolic rate (“MR”)
10. The body reduces muscle with under-use, and eats muscle (the engine) if blood sugar is low
11. My model for increasing metabolic rate: provide fuel to the engine and build up the engine
12. Fast-digesting carbs stimulate insulin release, which inhibits fat release from fat cells, and clears blood sugar into fat to be converted into fat i.e. “fast carbs” shut off the availability of sugar and fat
13. Sugar and fat and the two main fuel sources for muscle, and blood sugar is the main brain fuel
14. Since neurons do not store much fuel, a low blood sugar reduces brain function
15. If the fuel lines are shut off by large amounts of insulin, the metabolic rate of a big engine falls
16. The top red section represents the blood stream, the bottom portion a muscle cell taking in nutrients. Insulin is like a hand ringing a dinner bell on the surface of the cell, triggering fuel transporters to come to the surface of the muscle cell.
17. Fast-digesting carbs raise blood sugar quickly, stimulating larger amounts of insulin, rushing sugars into muscle, which can shut down insulin signaling as the cell protects itself from this.
18. Since muscle shuts down its glucose uptake right when blood sugar is at its highest, more insulin is released to clear the sugar into body fat.
19. So why even bother eating carb at all? Without it the brain triggers muscle destruction to get amino acids for the liver’s converting it to glucose for the brain.
20. Low-carb for a physically active person can easily drop muscle mass over time. Eating only carbs (without protein, fats, or bulk like when the carb is a whole fruit or vegetable) lacks a hormonal stimulation that allows for a proper insulin response. Fast-digesting carbs overflows muscle causing it to shut down its absorption. The solution is to eat slow-digesting carb or slow down fast carbs with vegetables, not to completely avoid carbs or snack on processed carbs.
21. Slow-digesting nutrients (whole food) therefore lends itself to driving lean tissue and, as a result, metabolism. The lean tissue has more time to absorb slow-digesting nutrients, so less goes to fat.
22. Fast-digesting nutrients biases fat taking more even if you are not over-eating.
23. You can exercise to avoid appearing fat on the outside, but fat will still accumulate in organs, including the bloodstream.
24. Shifting gears to protein: Larger amounts of protein reduces insulin signaling.
25. A high-protein meal inhibits muscle absorption of the carb in that meal.
26. Amino acids entering muscle quickly shuts down insulin’s second messenger in the cell.
27. Animal fats shut down insulin signaling at the cell’s surface and the fuel transporters.
28. Slightly higher saturated fat levels in the blood significantly reduces glucose uptake into muscle
29. Unsaturated fats raise glucose uptake into muscle as much as saturated fats reduces it
30. A high-fat diet cuts muscle fueling rate in half, but adding omega-3 fats doubles it back to normal
31. These shut-down mechanisms by animal fats, fast protein, and fast carb are (together) the door
32. Shutting the fueling door to muscle forces more nutrients to go to fat
33. Eventually, the loss of fueling to lean tissue will reduce the amount of lean tissue
34. Partitioning nutrients to lean tissue automatically drives body function while reducing body fat
35. A flow-model for nutrient delivery: the bloodstream is a bucket into which nutrients are poured from digestion, and from which nutrients are delivered through a spigot to lean tissue. Overflow of carbs (solid line overflow) goes more to belly fat, whereas overflow of protein and dietary fats (dashed line overflow) goes more to sub-cutaneous fat.
36. There are many factors that research has shown to impact the various steps in the flow model
37. Sleep positively impacts many steps
38. Stress negatively impacts many steps
39. Keep things as simple as possible but no simpler
40. Besides the flow model, you want to grow the engine itself
41. Different types of exercise impact different physiological responses
42. Muscular strength increases cardiovascular health
43. Muscle mass reduces type-2 diabetes (a state of low metabolic rate)
44. CDC data on which state populations are the most physically active
45. This pattern is similar to the pattern of where people are the least overweight
46. The longest-lived people do not exercise or diet. Instead they move throughout the day and eat unprocessed food.
47. Lastly, the metabolism model I have presented is not correct. Models are not meant to be. They are temporary ways of uniting the current research into a story-line that helps us make decisions. If the model helps us achieve the goals we have set out for ourselves, it is at least temporarily useful.
48. The calorie-balance model (exercise more and eat less) has limited effectiveness in achieving physiological goals i.e. is too simplified to be functionally useful for many people, and can even backfire and hurt some people. This challenges to continue developing functional models.