I've recently asked a related question, and I don't mean to belabor the point, but I am curious to dive into this topic.
On the recent PH question (link) about the Taubes live Q&A on huffpo, I saw this response to a question about Taubes' purposes for LC and insulin management:
"The whole point of the low carb diet would be to reverse insulin resistance. Do you have some other mechanism by which you might accomplish this?"
My question is: Is this true? Is the whole point of LC to manage insulin? If yes, then that implies there are no benefits of LC for someone without any history of insulin problems. You can eat Paleo-ish (whole foods only, avoid gluten, fat okay, etc) but still not eat LC, true? If you present no insulin problems and are able to maintain good nutrition on high carb, then eating high carb should be okay? Potatoes, rice, veg, fruit.. all good, right?
Or am I wrong? I'm truly curious to hear what the community thinks. Cited sources appreciated.
This is an iceberg question......but a good one. My profession treats the part of the iceberg they see......insulin resistance. But they never think about treating the root cause. That is leptin resistance. Much harder to do but it completely will reverse all insulin issues. Your point about paleo is this.......why do I low carb really? Is there a limit or boundary? Yes there is. If you metcon to death paleo dieting can actually degrade your performance. It wont kill you. But you wont be able to do some of the things a glycolytic high performer can.
It will however allow you to maintain significant muscle bulk and definition and in my opinion allow you to live longer because of its effects on telomeres. High glycolytic performers dont live long lives contrary to what people think. There is a biological reason and we are beginning to find out why now.
Ketogenic diets were developed because of their efficiency at treating "untreatable" conditions, and the correlation to insulin resistance has come out of that research. Initially it's only purpose may have been to treat something, but now, considering what passes as "food"... its just a good idea to go with regardless.
Anything one can do to lessen the load on the pancreas that secrets insulin the better.
All carbs are simply sugars strung together to look like carbs. Then in the gut, they are converted to sugar which off course the body sees and it secretes insulin out of the pancreas.
You do that day after day, year after year, and perhaps your pancreas will poop out and start not secreting enough insulin and voila, you are a diabetic type II.
Best advice, eat paleo and limit carbs and avoid wheat products and sugar and dairy...as dairy also contains sugars that need to be controlled by insulin.
There are lots of people that think they can handle the excess carb/sugar load now...but will they be able to in their later years?
Only their telomeres know for sure.
I suppose that it's all relative and that one person's low carb is another's high carb. I eat more carbs than most here, and I feel great doing so. I'm currently in the midst of a plyometric leg workout and shoveling rice into my mouth between jump squat sets. I'll probably eat 300-something grams of carbs today, but on average I'm likely below the carb intake of the average person, and I'm definitely WAY below the fructose intake. The average American consumes something like 73g of fructose a day, which is ridiculous. I stay between 5-10g a day. I'm of the opinion that fructose restriction is far more important than carb restriction.
I also believe that insulin resistance can be corrected simply with a removal of fructose and a marked increase in activity, with weight lifting being far more effective than, say, only walking. If someone wasn't just prediabetic and actually had full blown type 2 diabetes, VLC would likely be a therapeutic technique, and I've certainly read accounts of it being completely reversed.
It just seems to me that most here could do quite well with much more starch than they think.
There's also the debate of what "normal" blood glucose levels are. What the government recommendations suggest as 'ok' fasting levels (under 100 I believe?) and what other people suggest (under 80) would lead to different conclusions about pre-diabetes and insulin resistance.
But I agree that we shouldn't fear (good) carbs the way some people suggest.
LC is not necessarily Paleo, and Paleo is not necessarily LC. My Paleo is LC. Degradation of connective tissues, bone loss, eye health, neurological health and myriad issues are mitigated got me via Paleo LC. AGE formation is lessened. Immune issues, mood, sleep, community, family life all improves with Paleo living.
Again, I think that it's best to go with what you're comfortable with. I think many people probably could do with more (safe) carbs than they think, provided fructose is low. I think for people with serious metabolic issues of course should go the ketogenic route, same with those with neurological issues. For me, I enjoy more on the ketogenic side of things. I feel good on it. Like Peter of Hyperlipid says: (not exact wording) I like to stay in mild ketosis or drift in and out of ketosis. Sounds comfy to me!
Paleo Recipe book 8 Answers