So as we follow my friend Evo through this diet attempt – he’s consuming beer and sausage for a month, and losing weight. This experiment gives me a chance to go through other odd ball diets that people have tried and claimed success with. This diet, however, is under strict medical supervision. First the update:
Down six pounds- two of it fluid. One week- beer and sausage.
My assessment: he is healthy, fit, full of energy. Evo is working hard at keeping his beer and sausage calorie consumption to less than 1500 calories a day. Since he burns around 2100 a day- he should lose at least a pound a week -or over the course of the month- four pounds.
Why the big drop? Two pounds of it are from total body water – and that might be the diuretic effect of the beer. His fat loss is also about two pounds. Those numbers are somewhat exact – the weight loss is real.
Will this “diet” work? Yes, much like a thousand other diets, limit your calories, use just one food group or a couple, and you will be fine. Lets add a bit of fine print here: we are following Evo’s cholesterol level, liver chemistries, and a number of other tests to make certain he isn’t getting into trouble. He is also going to be taking a multivitamin daily. Also some fiber daily. If “German” things come with the sausage – he can eat that. Sausage and Peppers – for example, or sauerkraut – he can have those. What he can’t have are the side dishes that are processed – no breads, no potatoes, no rice, no pasta.
Today in the office we discussed the huge difference between this and the Paleo-diet. In the days of the caveman they drank water- most illness was transmitted through water. Beer is highly purified, has nutrients in it- and while some will say it is evil – it really isn’t. I suspect those who say it is evil are those who are the “pure food” people- similar to “raw” or “vegan” – there is a self-righteous superiority about people on diets. So- if Evo drank water from the streams (we live in Arizona, so that is difficult) he would probably become ill. Sausage – another processed food- which is meat. While “processed” has a bad name (as bad as an Atheist naming their son Christian) – think about cavemen and meat. You haul in this big bison, wildebeest, or huge creature– most of it will become rancid and cause more illness quicker. But then we became smart and learned how to process and preserve meats. We have eliminated another cause of early death of the paleo-types – death from botulinum toxin, or salmonella (much worse in those days than today).
So Evo’s diet will lead to a longer life than if he followed a true Paleo-diet. Later in this series we will take a skeptical eye to that particular diet and its failures as well as its good points. For now- take this as the humor it is meant to be — a caveman in Phoenix would lose more weight on the Paleo-diet than Evo will because they would become sick and die. We will make certain that doesn’t happen to Evo.
Good job, Evo- first week. Great weight loss, more than expected.
Dr. Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Chicago where he spent several years in the Kovler Viral Oncology laboratories doing genetic engineering. He found he liked people more than petri dishes, and received his MD. Dr. Simpson, then became a renowned weight loss surgeon, and a leading advocate of culinary medicine. The first surgeon to become certified in Culinary Medicine, he advocates teaching people to improve their health through their food. On the other side of the world, he has been a leading advocate of changing health care to make it more "relationship based," and his efforts awarded his team the Malcom Baldrige award for healthcare in 2011 for the NUKA system of care in Alaska. A frequent contributor to media outlets discussing health related topics and advances in medicine, he is also a proud dad, husband, author, cook, and surgeon “in that order.” For media inquiries, please visit www.terrysimpson.com.