This Article Made Me Hungry; So I Stopped For Breakfast

One of the things I'll discuss often is getting off the "mealtime" bandwagon. Why would you want to eat when you're not hungry? Some days, I'll eat five or eight "meals" a day. Others, one or two. Some days, none at all. Today at 11am, I suddenly realized I was hungry. So I ate. Imagine that.

Picture 2

A simple five strips of bacon (uncured, organic, from Whole Foods) and three Jumbo eggs. The cooking oil melting in the pan is one of my favorites: ghee. If you get tired of your butter smoking and browning (when you don't want browned butter), use ghee. It's on about par with lard, but both take a backseat to the greatest cooking oil of all: coconut oil.

But before I get into one of the long digressions for which I'm infamous, let me get to the point. It's about the ghee.

Here's the article from the BBC: "Hidden heart harm of fatty foods"

Ahmed Al Haj is only 48 and looks healthy on the outside, yet this Bangladeshi waiter has ended up on the operating table for a triple heart bypass.

As a Muslim, Ahmed does not smoke or drink, but his diet has been rich in ghee, the clarified butter in which many south Asian dishes are drenched.

Instead of a healthy pink muscle, his heart looks like a pulsating lump of lard after a lifetime of eating too much saturated fat.

The layer of fat encasing Mr Haj's heart was so thick the surgeons doing his triple bypass could not see his coronary arteries.

Surgeon Shyam Kolvekar from The Heart Hospital at University College London, who performed Mr Haj's triple bypass, said cases like this were increasingly common and highlighted the dangers of eating too much saturated fat.

Where do I begin? How about with a refresher in epistemology? Anyone recall a priori from logic class? Or, if you're a practitioner of religion, you could file this under the "what, is god stupid?" category. If neither, then, is nature malevolent? Did we survive 3 millionish years of evolution with a deadly pitfall around every enticing corner? To wit: eggs whites are healthy. Egg yolks'll kill you! "God" must be crazy.

In short and simple, a priori simply means obvious, tautological. But there's a catch. Everything isn't that simple. And when you attempt to make it so when it's not, you make big mistakes. Example: primitive man looked up at the sun, moon and stars and made an a priori conclusion. Obviously, all these lights in the sky are revolving around us.

That view persisted for not only hundreds of thousands of years of primitive reason, but even for the fist 9,000 years of our 10,000 years of civilization, counting from the advent of agriculture and nation-statism.

Poor Ahmed's heart is fat (not meant sarcastically). Ahmed eats fat. So eating fat causes heart disease.

I'm not going to belabor this, because it's just absurd on its face, and besides, we'll talk a lot about this over time. Dietary fat typically does not get stored as fat. Dietary sugar does. Carbohydrate drives insulin drives fat storage. Learn it.

And notice this most particularly in this article. There is no effort whatsoever to even question or suggest the existence of any other variables in Ahmed's life. He eats fat. Case closed. How much sugar and other carbohydrate does Ahmed consume? Blank out.

I'll tell you this, though. If I was a big consumer of sugar and other processed foods and carbs, like wheat flour products, I'd watch fat too (all the while I'm getting fatter and fatter). If you're both high carb and high fat, you'll probably get atherosclerosis. The problem isn't the fat, it's the sugar, but in that macronutrient environment, the problem is probably exacerbated by the fat because of its energy density, so even more glucose is going to be sequestered in fat cells.

Later: Well, I've been on such a tear this morning (hey, as my cousin just emailed: "you're an animal") that I didn't even finish the article. Low and behold, near the end:

The footage, taken at The Heart Hospital a few weeks ago, has been released with Mr Haj's permission to highlight the hidden danger done by fried snacks, pastries and buttery foods.

Need I say more? Except: what kind of "buttery foods?"

More later: I was remiss in not thanking both Elliot and Chris for emailing that BBC article.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Bill on September 9, 2008 at 18:07

    Richard, is it ok that i still visit your site,even though i follow a very low carb diet i feel i could learn alot from you.i am about at 10 grams of carbs .from green beans now and they are fryed in bacon greese. i actually weigh 297 today you gottta love the fat.


  2. Richard Nikoley on September 9, 2008 at 20:23


    It's OK for you to do whatever you want, on your own authority.


  3. Lyle McDonald could easily tear you or Gary Taubes apart in your farcical insulin makes you fat arguments.

    CALORIES make you fat.

  4. Richard Nikoley on February 28, 2009 at 09:58

    Go away, troll (Philip Downey).

    What McDonald needs to do is get fat and prove it for himself. I can consume upwards of 4-5k kcal per day average (very low carb / high fat) and lose weight. Did it many times over periods of weeks in the last 18 months.

    It's complex metabolism, hormone driven, and McDonald has made the easiest error of all (based on a priori thinking): cause & effect reversal:

    Here's a self experiment anyone can try:

    For two weeks, eat nothing but 1000 kcal per day carbs and only trace fat & protein. record weight loss results.

    For the next two weeks, do the same with protein and record results (this is McDonald's Rapid Fat Loss regime, BTW).

    For the final two weeks, same thing with fat (drinking heavy cream would be easiest).

    Here's what you'll find:

    On the carbs, you'll likely lose a bit (but you may not, and some might even gain). On the protein, you'll lose a substantial amount. On the fat, you'll lose a hugely substantial amount.

    According to Mc Donald's "it's all about calories" simplistics, effect on weight should be identical. It won't be, and until he can resolve that, he's a great guy and a valuable asset to all this, but is unfortunately mistaken.

  5. Minneapolis J on March 1, 2009 at 18:16

    Richard, I also consume 4000 calories easily…. at 6-1 170 lbs. and a 30 inch waistline, I must be getting too many calories right??

  6. Richard Nikoley on March 1, 2009 at 18:31

    Mo, I'll bet you're just going four hours of cardio per day.

    That explains it. Calories in, calories out. It's _THERMODYNAMIKKKS_.

  7. Jack Christopher on November 6, 2009 at 10:42

    Had to fix my thyroid first to lose weight (on high fat). And I had to be *certain* my carbs were low. Being active accelerates things. But isn’t strictly necessary.

    Also alcohol helps weight gain.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Follow by Email8k