Posted by: Chris Maloney | April 15, 2012

The Carbo Lie: Peanut Butter and Celery Updated.

Peanut butter cookie with a chocolate chip smi...

Peanut butter cookie with a chocolate chip smiley face (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of my favorite aspects of the Atkins Diet is the idea that the body loses weight rapidly because all the glucose stores are depleted.  (My Atkins’ article here.)  The theory is that without carbs, the body depletes all its stores, and all the resulting water weight lost is translated into pounds lost.

So, having starved myself with peanut butter and celery, I looked to see what a pasta dinner would do.

The expectation is simple.  The addition of carbohydrates would lead to immediate weight gain.  The result?  No weight gain whatsoever.  The scale stayed steady.

Now, even my twelve-year-old began making excuses for the lack of weight gain.  “Maybe it will just catch up to you.”  Ok, that is something I’ve heard other people say as well.  Starting on the carbs will “catch up,” and indeed on my second day of carb intake I did put on three pounds.  But where has the first day’s worth of carbs been hiding?  It didn’t appear on the scale with me, so is it just not part of my body until a day or so later?  Are we hypothesizing an Auric layer of body weight, where extra body weight hangs in the ether waiting to approach the body like some greasy cloud?  If not, then where in my body was the carbohydrate being stored?

I have often thought that weight-loss is more a religion than a science.  And it isn’t one of those nice religions where you only have to show up on holidays.  It’s one of those cranky old religions where you have to throw salt over your shoulder, avoid black cats, and beware the evil eye of your Friendly’s waiter.  If you’re not careful, you have to sacrifice your self-esteem in a late night ritual involving a knife and a pie.

So anyone out there got the skinny on where my carb weight went?


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