"Survival Of The Fattest": It's A Fat, Fat World After All

Tyler Durden's picture

Back in March, we first presented a rather stunning finding: by 2020 75% of Americans will be obese or overweight. This was promptly followed up with a post showing just how it is transpired that America became the fattest nation in the world in less than 20 years. What however may not be known, is that America's fatness epidemic is not localized to the country that gave the world the McDonalds burger (and the McMansion): it really is a fat, fat world, after all. 

Behold - survival of the fattest:

It is hardly surprising in this light, then, that the estimate for number of people living with diabetes has been increased, to 371 million - an increase of 11% over 2011.

So with the sensitive issue of what one stuffs in their mouth becoming of paramount importance, primarily due to the avalanche in social costs as a result of escalating morbid obesity, here is a primer on the key facts and figures relating to obesity, domestic as well as foreign, and impacting not just the developed world but also emerging economies, from GS' Mick Ready and Keyur Parekh.

Obesity is a unique phenomenon affecting almost all countries. It is defined as excessively high amount of body fat in relation to lean tissue, and individuals are generally considered overweight if their BMI is over 25, and clinically obese if their body mass index (BMI) is greater than 30.

The 1980s saw a sharp acceleration in BMI in OECD countries. Before 1980, global obesity rates were generally below 10% but today, in almost half of OECD countries, 50% of the population is overweight. Interestingly, data suggests that obesity is a pandemic that is now impacting not just the developed western countries, but also the emerging economies. In BRIC economies, obesity rates are somewhat lower than in their OECD counterparts, but urbanisation and lifestyle changes are driving a significant increase in average BMI. In China, the proportion of the population considered overweight increased from 13.5% in 1991 to 26.7% in 2006; in Brazil between 1975 and 2003, the obesity rate tripled in men and doubled in women; and in Russia 25% of women and 10% of men are now considered obese.

  • Data suggest that at levels of GDP below US$5,000 per capita there is a linear relationship between GDP and mean BMI, and that the only pre-condition for developing an obese population is the ability to afford food.
  • In low income countries, obese individuals are typically middle-aged women from wealthy, urban settings.
  • In countries with GDP of more than US$5,000 per capita pa, obesity is not characterized by gender, or age, but disadvantaged groups typically are at greater risk of becoming obese;
    • 33% of US adults earning over US$15,000 pa are obese, compared with 25% of those earning over US$50,000 pa.
    • 33% of adults who did not graduate high school were obese, compared with 21.5% who graduated from college.

What’s causing this increase?

Obesity is a complex problem, with multiple factors influencing its development within a population. These factors include systemic and environmental drivers, which provide an infrastructure to promote high growth, consumption of transport and recreational factors, which limit the physical activity within a population, and behavioral patterns, where individuals consume high-energy foods and lead sedentary lifestyles.

For an individual, obesity is caused by an energy imbalance: simply put, obese individuals consume more energy than they use. Energy intake is a clear factor in the rise of obesity, and dietary intake is strongly influenced by the kinds of food we eat. Changes in the food system to more mass-produced, processed foods with added salt, fats and sugars, coupled with more effective marketing of these products, especially targeting young children has changed the kind of food we eat which contributes to this energy imbalance.

To summarize, changes in the global food system, which produces readily available, inexpensive, highly processed and well marketed foods, coupled with changes in working patterns, has created an energy imbalance resulting in increased levels of obesity.

Sugary drinks: The choice of a heavy generation

There are multiple factors which are linked to the development of obesity globally, but sugar-sweetened drinks have attracted particular attention in the US. Sugar intake from sugar-sweetened drinks is thought to be the largest single caloric food source in the US, approaching 15% of the daily calorific intake in several population groups.

High-sugar drinks are effectively marketed to children and young adults, and their consumption is often linked to fast food, which is likely to exacerbate the obesity problem. Many sugar-sweetened drinks contain high-fructose corn syrup, and there is evidence to suggest a link between high-fructose corn syrup and the development of insulin resistance (think diabetes). Multiple studies have shown that replacing a sugar-containing drink with a sugar-free equivalent significantly reduced weight gain and fat accumulation in normal weight children, prompting calls from the American Heart Association, the Institute of Medicine, and the Obesity society to reduce consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.

The consequences of being obese: Shorter, less healthy lives The life expectancy of a person with a BMI of 40-45 is reduced by around 8-10 years, which is similar to the reduction in life expectancy suffered by smokers. An  overweight person of average height increases their risk of death by around 30% for every 15kg of weight. Obesity is a key risk factor in the development of multiple diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, osteoarthritis and

The most direct and obvious impact of obesity is on incidence of diabetes - a severely obese person is around 60 times more likely to develop diabetes than someone with normal weight. High blood pressure and high cholesterol levels are also linked to high BMI.

These combined risk factors make an obese individual more likely to die from heart disease or stroke.

But perhaps a less intuitive link is the one between obesity, physical inactivity and cancer. Obesity and physical inactivity are also a key risk factor in the development of certain cancers; around 9% of colorectal cancers, and 11% of postmenopausal breast cancer in women is linked to obesity. An additional 5kg/m2 in BMI is thought to increase the risk of colorectal cancer by 24% in males, and to increase the risk of postmenopausal breast cancer in women by 12%.

Obesity and cancer – the not so obvious link

According to the American Cancer Society, one-third of cancer deaths are linked to obesity and/or lack of physical activity.

Improvements in cancer diagnosis, treatment and prevention has seen an improvement in death rates for cancer in the US over recent years, but the obesity epidemic within the US puts this trend at risk. Obesity is a known risk factor for multiple different tumour types, including oesophageal, colorectal, endometrial, kidney and certain breast cancers. In addition to increasing the risk of developing certain cancers, obese individuals are less likely to survive their cancer diagnosis; individuals with a BMI above 40 had death rates 52% higher for men and 62% higher for  women when compared to people of normal weigh.

Obese men are at significantly higher risk of developing colorectal cancer; the distribution of body fat appears to be an important fact, with abdominal obesity measured by waist circumference demonstrating a strong correlation with colon cancer risk. Obesity also modestly increases the risk of women developing postmenopausal breast cancer.

The costs of an obese population – direct, but also indirect Obese populations place greater stress upon healthcare systems already struggling to cope with rising expectation on what healthcare systems can deliver, more expensive medical interventions and an increasingly elderly population. The chronic nature of the condition means that obese people consume a greater share of healthcare resources, over a longer period of time.

Medical costs for obese individuals are as much as 30% to 40% higher than those with normal weight. An obese individual will on average visit a physician 27% more frequently than someone with a normal weight, and the annual extra medical costs of obesity in the US were estimated to be US$75 bn in 2003 (BMJ Wang). If current demographic trends continue, obesity-related costs are set to double every ten years, and could account for 16%-18% of US Healthcare expenditure by 2030. In the UK, data point to a similar trend, with £650 mn increased annual costs by 2020, and £2 bn higher costs by 2030 (Wang).

In addition to the direct medical costs for treating obesity, there are indirect costs to society and economies, which include early retirement and lost or lower productivity. US data suggest a direct correlation between obesity and missed work days in men, with males with a BMI above 40 taking almost six additional sick days each year. Swedish data suggest obese individuals are 1.5-1.9 times more likely to take sick leave than their peers with normal weight.

Who provides the solutions?

Before we get to the investing implication of this pandemic, we believe it’s worth spending a minute on the impact that reversal of current trends might have, and the role that various parties have played thus far to resolve this. Perhaps slightly depressingly, we believe that pharma companies alone are unlikely to be able to resolve this. Indeed we believe that a majority of this change message needs to come from government policy and social change (as we saw in the 1970s-80s with smoking).

What are the benefits if trends reverse?

Modest changes can have a dramatic impact on both an individual’s risk profile and society as a whole. A 1% reduction in BMI (approximately losing 1kg of body weight) is estimated to reduce cases of diabetes by around 2 million, and cases of cancer by around 100. However, implementation of these changes will require behavioural changes through health promotion campaigns and policy interventions to address healthy public sector food service policies. But policy and behavioural changes are not easy to implement and take time to take effect.

Pharma industry response – encouraging, but not adequate

Despite numerous attempts, the pharmaceutical industry has had limited success in addressing the primary cause of obesity (energy imbalance). Current treatments combat the consequences of obesity, e.g., through the management of hypertension, or diabetes. [ZH: perhaps the profit potential is far greater in perpetuating the underlying cause and merely treating the symptoms which have a duration that expires with the expiration of the patient?] A large number of companies have tried to develop pharmaceuticals to target energy imbalance, but the vast majority have failed owing to serious toxic effects. For example, Sanofi’s Accomplia was abandoned for suicidal ideation, Fen-Phen was withdrawn for serious cardiovascular concerns, and sibutramine was recently withdrawn following cardiovascular safety concerns.

2012 has seen the FDA approval of two new treatments for obesity, when used in conjunction with reduced calorie diets. Both Belviq (Arena Pharmaceuticals) and Qsymia (Vivus) reduce appetite and in some people can induce a negative energy balance. Both products have demonstrated safety signals which are a cause for concern, and patients receiving these products will require careful monitoring by clinicians. But, the FDA’s willingness to approve agents with clear safety signals illustrates the need for effective intervention for obesity.

One of the more serious efforts to this end was recently demonstrated by the Australian government, which evaluated several measures aimed at combating this epidemic (see exhibit below). Not surprisingly,  nonpharmacological options were found to be more cost-effective in the long term, but are obviously more difficult to implement at a society level.

* * *

Another, even more dramatic health-related recent intervention was that on behalf of Mike Bloomberg and the city of New York banning sugary drinks in 16 oz containers or more.

The problem with government intervention in individual and social level consumption, is that it never works without a proper incentive system. If instead of using negative reinforcement, the government were to use positive reinforcement techniques, and for example offer each American $100/year for every pound kept below the overweight threshold every year, the results would be far more encouraging, and the costs saved in the long run would more than offset initial outlays.

Of course, this being the government, it is absolutely certain that corruption and "unintended side-effects" will intervene, that incentives will be perverted by special interests and lobby groups, and the final outcome would be a far worse one than the base case.

Which is why, sadly, the obesity epidemic will not be "fixed" in any conventional sense, but like so many other aspects of the current unsustainable socio-economic system, will merely go away on its own once the "weakest links" are eliminated by the various forces of natural (and man-made) selection in play today.

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JustPrintMoreDuh's picture

Twinkies for all!  Oh wait ... 

vast-dom's picture

bitch tits gone parabolic.

ACP's picture

Gotta make it sound food related. How about pancake tits?

TheCanadianAustrian's picture

The reason there's an obesity epidemic, which worsened most dramatically in the 80s, is the stigma against eating fat, emploring people to turn to carbs as a way to quell their appetite.

Carbs cause weight gain. It's that simple. The causal links are not even disputed by health professionals. They're simply ignored.

It's understandable that people reject this notion. It's hard to go against all conventional wisdom. But the government food pyramid truly is the Keynesianism of dietary science.

The food pyramid is another example of destructive government propoganda. The entire bottom layer of the pyramid should be removed. It simply does not contain any food that our bodies are designed/evolved to eat.

Think about it logically for a moment. What evolutionary benefit could there possibly be in weighing 400 pounds? This is far from an optimal weight for hunting and gathering. When there are plenty of animals and animal fat to eat, it makes sense that the body should remain in slender, muscular shape, to maximize the chances of catching the next meal.

This doesn't mean there's no evolutionary benefit in weighting 400 pounds. Far from it. The real evolutionary benefit in weighing 400 pounds is during a famine. If the human body expects to go months without a fresh meal, it makes sense to build a store of fat to draw from. Here's the thing: When you eat grains and carbs, the body's less-preferred meal, that's exactly the signal you're sending to your body. You're communicating "famine" to your body when you eat this way. So there should be no surprise that carbs stimulate the hormone which causes weight gain.

Eating less fat means eating more carbs to satisfy the appetite. Eating more carbs means more insulin which stimulates weight gain. Therefore, eating more fat means weight loss. It's such a beautifully elegant explanation for all our weight problems, yet so elusively difficult for the majority of people to understand this. It doesn't help that government-funded public service TV ads are telling us the opposite.

When you think about it, it makes sense that almost everyone fails to understand this. The idea that eating more fat means losing more fat is just plain counterintuitive. Knowing this, should we really be surprised that we have an obesity epidemic? Not really.

Measuring calories in the diet makes as much sense as measuring GDP in the economy. It's such a flawed measurement that there's almost no value to be found in it at all. The main problem is that most people assume that calories can only be disposed through "burning" them or through some kind of exercise. What people never seem to calculate is how much fat is simply ends up in the toilet. Without the fat-storing insulin hormone caused by carbs, there's simply no way for the body to store the fat that is eaten.

If you don't believe me, just try it for yourself. Try eating pork chops and chicken thighs for a month and get rid of all sugars/carbs so that the body doesn't store the excess fat. Then when you shit, look at how much oil is floating in the toilet bowl. Then take a look in the mirror. You're welcome, fatass.



Oh, and before you pass judgment on this post, please see who agrees with me:


Joy on Maui's picture

We need more voices like yours.   The essence of your message is not new to me, but the  comparison of conventional approaches to diet and Keynesianism is  - great analogy!

duo's picture

I remember spending a week living with my buddies relatives in France.  Sausage, eggs, pate, wine, more pate, cheese, more cheese.  I thought I was going to gain weight.  In reality, I was never hungry between meals, not that there was anything to snack on anyway.  Lost 8 lbs that week.

HobbyFarmer's picture

Thanksgiving morning spent it at a 5k with my wife and kids.  We were surrounded by other fit people....generally, it seemed the women out numbered the men 2 to 1 (my rough estimate).  It would appear to be a fantastic time to be a young, fit man.  Too bad most of the eligible bachelors were likely soaking in the beer, football, and feasting.  They missed a great chance to mingle with some really amazing people.

economics9698's picture

Low IQ third world people getting access to enough food to eat themselves to death. 

Quite Darwin if you ask me.


  • EBT card =
  • African American women have the highest rates of being overweight orobese compared to other groups in the U.S. About four out of five African American women are overweight or obese.
  • In 2010, African Americans were 1.4 times as likely to be obese as Non- Hispanic Whites.
  • In 2010, African American women were 70% more likely to be obese than Non-Hispanic White women.
  • In 2007-2010, African American girls were 80% more likely to be overweight than Non-Hispanic White girls.



Oh regional Indian's picture

America's Fat problem has a rather easy to point to source.

Free Energy. On teh back of the rest of the world, the US of A has had super cheap energy for the decades post WWII.

Free energy makes you lazy. You don't have to do as much. It's all done, mechanized, convenient-ized and of course SUpersized for you.

An energy shock would change everything. BUt everything points to everyone wanting to keep the status quo.

Since embedded energy is THE key to life in all it's forms (our bodies, the thiings we make, use, burn, bomb with, build with......EVERYTHING), it is the equation that reflects the State of everything.

The curse of Free Energy. Kind of like Midas, only worse.




economics9698's picture

Americans use to do the hard work until the 2000s when our borders were flooded with illegal immigration.  It was not uncommon to work 50, 60, 80 hours a week of hard labor in America under brutal conditions.  What you read and what reality is are two different things.

We would gladly go back to hard labor if our fucking leaders would stop the flood of Mexicans taking our fucking jobs.


El Tuco's picture

This is the only time I've ever disagreed with you.

Mexicans aren't the problem. They have made things extremely affordable with their 3rd world wages here in America. Brick layers, carwashero's, landscaping, roofers, janitors, maids, etc. Shit, I don't know anyone's job they have taken. I don't know anyone who would even want to do that work 12 -14 hours a day in the hot Texas sun. You don't see them in factories because all the factories are in China. You don't see them in IT, engineering, in hospitals, you see them doing work that the SNAP card folks would never do.


I'm not afraid of hard physical work but it can make you old and cripple real fast and I don't envy anyone doing it.

economics9698's picture

Back in the 80s we white folk did the hard labor.  It was the white boys on drugs were the rod busters, Negroes did the concrete, pansy assed white boys electricians, gross white boys were the plumbers, the butt crack people, and smart white guys were the inspectors and superintendents.  Blacks, usually assistant superintendents were the enforcers; they kicked the ass, did the dangerous jobs, and made sure no one got out of line.  It was our system and it worked.

In the 90s and definitely by the 2000s America was flooded with cheap Mexican labor that drove down blue collar wages and put the black and white guys out of work.  We would gladly take our jobs back but we get outbid by Mexicans for jobs everywhere we bid. 

The Mexicans use to live in communal houses bought by the boss, got second mortgages on the house, bid jobs for nothing, made their money and split. 

The assholes in Washington, Bush, Reich, Obama, Clinton, Reagan, intentionally promote the illegal immigration policy for votes, cheap labor, and the rich getting richer. 

It all a Yids world in America and whatever the Yids want the Yids get.  Every fucking industry, every fucking job, every fucking law, the fucking Yids own America.  If the Yids can make a buck the government kisses their ass and makes it happen. 

Separate borders, separate countries. 

markmotive's picture

What's causing this? The same things that are causing the rest of our problems. Stupidity and laziness.

You think we'd have an empire of debt if the average person got off their a$$es once in a while?


GetZeeGold's picture


Probably doesn't even realize he's an asshole....or that he's even overweight.


You think we'd have an empire of debt if the average person got off their a$$es once in a while?


The average person just voted for exactly that....then they went back to their couches and waited for next batch of EBT cards to arrive.

derek_vineyard's picture

it will be inexpensive for disneyland to change their famous attraction to its a fat, fat world after all

Ayreos's picture

Meanwhile: no amount of physical labor can offset the results of a bad diet.

My father has been doing hard labor almost every day for  40 years and the only time he has stopped being overweight is when my mother got sick and stopped feeding him carbs like grains.

AgDc's picture

Nice ethnic, racial BS stereotypes.   And in requisite ZH fashion you got to throw in the anti-Jewish crap.  What a vacuous mind, if any.

Bananamerican's picture

El Tuco
Your whole argument is only worsened by your screen name...
One assumes you're "Latino" trotting out the old " doing the dirty jobs Gringoes and Negroes won't do" line....which is pure, unadulterated, racist bullshit...a small consolation prize for the fact that so many Millions of "Latinos" couldn't make it back home in "Aztlan" and were forced to flee a myriad of self created "Latino" cultural/institutional hellholes.
Those "crap" jobs belong to American youth and the "undiploma-ed" as they did in times past, not to a bunch of tax swilling, line jumping 3rd world peasants, fortunate enough to have been born adjacent to a burgeoning plantation state (amerika).
Illegal immigration is the on shoring of global wage arbitrage, nothing more, nothing less.
Illegal immigration goes hand in glove with the degradation and decay of American society as a productive citizenry is displaced by a more pliant culturally indifferent peasant workforce.....
"Thanks for the memories, American....Here's your SNAP card. You didn't want that NASTY ole job anyway..."

El Tuco's picture

I'm not a Latino but I understand that they are not the problem for America's job woes. The Mexican guy who is roofing 12 hours a day for 75 bucks in 110 degree heat is just the scapegoat.

Seriously do you think there are 1000's of Americans that want that job?

TBT or not TBT's picture

That guy gets the entire 12$     No taxes, no payments into a SS ponzi that will not be there anyway.

Bananamerican's picture

"Seriously do you think there are 1000's of Americans that want that job?"

Yes....and you have to be stupid to be buying that propaganda line. There are STILL places in America where Americns do all those things...just like they used to (& will again)

My 1st job was pumping gas.

My 2nd job was sucking the sludge out of big oil storage tanks in a poorly ventilated moonsuit and other oil field kid tasks like that.

My 3rd construction.

See a pattern there?

Those 1st jobs ARE the important jobs.

They train you to get up in the morning, get there on time and teach you what real WORK and cooperative endeavor feels like.

Take that away and what do you get?

Decadence: pure and simple.

TBT or not TBT's picture

Decadence:   Ah, no.  Between the taxes we pay on our income (social security, workman's comp, insurance, etc..the total cost of having the job), a lot of that pay we don't get to have.   On the other hand, politicians buy votes by extending handouts to the unemployed, which incentives them to forgo lower paid work, work they don't ordinarily do, etc, for sitting around instead, taking it easy.     This prevents wages and prices from adjusting as they should, and so the economic weakness persists, drags out, piles up debt, which weighs down the economy further, increasing dependence, increasing the demand and need for handouts.   The government party gains power.   The Great Depression was like this.   Big Democrat majorties.   Economic stagnation.    Rampant vote buying and demagoguery.     A really really big global war that made even vietnam look small, and iraq/afghanistan look like a minute detail, in every respect.

fattail's picture

Not for $12 an hour.  But if there were not 11 million illegal immigrants the labor supply would be such that the equilibrium price of labor would be much higher say $18-20.  High enough in fact that the government could not afford to provide a comparable living standard for the unskilled worker, like they can now.

Winston Churchill's picture

Youre wrong.

Over the last 2 decades there has been a major shift in jobs in ithe immigrant class.

Whereas twenty years ago it was unskilled labour to skilled and semi skilled.

One more generation, and they will be taking IT and engineering jobs.

markettime's picture

Combination of things: No manufacturing jobs that require labor, Our food is garbage and we all feel like crap from eating it, We are all broke from the Keynesian system. There is nothing for us to do, especially if you live in a big city. 

kchrisc's picture

That's racism man?! You're not supposed to know that much less talk about it.


Repeat after me: 2 +2 = 5

economics9698's picture

I am like the guy in the movie Network where he gives up and says “fuck it” or something to that effect. 

Miffed Microbiologist's picture

We ran in our local Turkey Trot 5k again this year too. What a fit,vibrant group. It was so cute to see young families come out with their young kids. They gave out awards for the top 7 finishers in the young age brackets. It was so nice to see 200 people cheer when they walked up for their ribbon. I pity the honey boo boo kids at home with the tv blaring and the junk food piled high on platters. I hope some find some way to escape. I managed to shave a minute of my time and came in 112 out of 175 which was a tear filled joy for me considering it was a difficult cross country course and running is not my specialty. After that run its quite hard to over indulge but we did have some tasty home made fixings a la Hedgeless Horseman and slept like rocks!


kekekekekekeke's picture

I ran a turkey trot too!  Waaaay more fit single young ladies than fit single young dudes, unfortunately. 

lincolnsteffens's picture

The worsening state of obesity is no accident. It is driven by profit. Just follow the money. It leads directly to big agribusiness, the pharmaceutical industry,food processors, chemical industry and oil/gas which is used in the production of man made fertilizer.

When government agencies and legislators find more reward catering to big business than the general public you get the current results. A nation of sick people mentally and physically. Now we will witness  the consolidation of health insurance that everyone pays for with no consequences for bad behavior and no reward for good. The destructive path is set and you can either stay on it or get off on the road less traveled.



JimBowie1958's picture

But also the BMI index is bullshit. According to that Tom Cruz is obese, wtf?

People have different body types, even with low fat percentages. I think my BMI is around 36 but my body fat percentage is around 22% which is average. I am a stocky muscular guy who can bench press 330 pounds and squat press over 400. I am not a weak ball of fat. Some people are just skinny in body type and can eat everything in sight and still not gain weight, and there are athletic people who seem to have that Goldy Lox middle and they are the body type that the BMI is based on, but sometimes I think the eggheads use the skinnies, lol.

BMI is just an agitprop tool for health nuts to take over everyones fucking lives.

sluggo's picture

You are correct.  According to their BMI, all those guys playing football toaday are obese!

spekulatn's picture

I haven't read Mr. Taube's book yet but he just received funding from Mr. John Arnold's foundation for a new non profit that appears interesting.




Here's Gary on the subject of sugar.





TBT or not TBT's picture

Exactly.   One hormone, far and away above all others, causes fat to be stored.   Insulin.  Carbohydrates cause insulin spikes.    Eating/drinking sugar causes insulin to spike, and fat to be stored, among the many other effects of insulin on EVERY cell in the body.    Know what causes even higher spikes than sugar?   Bread.    Whole wheat or white, makes no difference.    And then there is the additive effect, and immune system havoc caused by the glutens in modern "dwwarf" wheat.


Must reads on how we got here:   Anything by Gary Taubes.   Anything at all.

CrazyCooter's picture

I saw this a while back, is this a para-phrase or citation of your arguement?




TheCanadianAustrian's picture

My post was just me speaking of what I know. Really an easy post to write. Took me just a few minutes I think. When you learn things and they make sense, it's amazing how smoothly your words flow.

nimrod's picture

It is not really the carbs, but the FRUCTOSE that turns on the fat switch. although white carbs can be turned into fructose by the body...a backup for hibernating animals. Read the "fat switch" book for the latest info. Fructose tells the cells to store everything as fat, simultaneously it turns off the leptin snsitivity so you do not feel full. the combination is that is so powerful to make hibernating animals fat.

TBT or not TBT's picture

Fructose is a carbohydrate, but most human cells can do nothing with it.    It is processed by the liver, prompting the liver to manufacture lots of LDL cholesterol.    A sure and immediate way to increase your LDL cholesterol is to eat/drink anything with fructose in it, such as sugar(which is 50% fructose 50% glucose) or coke with HFCS in it(55% fructose) or worse, apple juice, which has fructose as something like 70% of the sugars in it.   That's why it is so sweet.

As far as there being a fructose "fat switch" in cells.    Well holy crap nimrod, that's a new one.    Provide a link, please.    Been reading on this for over a year now and never ran across that one.

The main thing that causes fat cells to make fat and not release fat for burning is INSULIN.   There are dozens of singalling hormones that will cause fat cells to release fat(adrenaline is a great example), ditto nicotine), but very few substances that cause fat cells to store fat or prevent the release of fat to the blood stream.    The 800 pound gorilla of them is INSULIN.    


piceridu's picture

Read "Good Calories, Bad Calories: Fats, Carbs, and the Controversial Science of Diet and Health" the epic book that started questioning fat makes you fat...by great scientific writer: Gary Taubes...it will change the way you look at eating.

Stuck on Zero's picture

On obesity and natural selection:

Pro-obese:  Fat stores can benefit an individual if there is a short period without adequate nutrition.  A famine. 

Anti-obese:  If there are predators about, the obese make a very high calorie target.  The obesity also makes you an easier target to chase down and consume.  Likewise, the obese are unable to chase down and capture anything.  


TBT or not TBT's picture

Across ALL human populations, introduction of high carbohydrate diets brought about obesity and diabetes and and associated "diseases of civilisation".     Peoples who ate mainly fat and protein food sources, nuts, and very little grains or fruits did not know obesity.    The reason is simple enough.    Carbohydrates trigger insulin production, and insulin production causes fat storage, and upregulates inflammatory processes behind, oh, cancers and joint problems, among so many others.