July 1

Sometimes you've just got to laugh

19  comments

A friend emailed me a couple of days ago to give me a hard time about one of the Amazon reviews of Protein Power. Other than when a new book first comes out I don’t really spend much time reading the reviews. There are over 400 reviews of Protein Power, and I doubt that I’ve read 50 of them. When I found the one my buddy was talking about, I had to laugh. Here it is:

The Power Protein Plan is an excellent program. The book details every aspect, including cholesterol, triglycerides, heart disease, diabetes…and explains how this protein plan can actually positively affect each.
My husband is diabetic and is on insulin and oral drugs to maintain his out of control blood sugar. I put him on the protein power plan and his blood sugar dropped enough that he could do away with 3 shots and the oral drug. He never felt better, but his self-destructive nature has caused him to forego sticking to the plan entirely-which is why I give it 4 stars instead of 5: If you cheat on this plan, you will gain weight and probably cause your blood levels to rise.
All in all, a healthy, easy plan–the included recipes are really quite good-though time-consuming.

The sentence that I found funny was, of course, this one:

He never felt better, but his self-destructive nature has caused him to forego sticking to the plan entirely-which is why I give it 4 stars instead of 5: If you cheat on this plan, you will gain weight and probably cause your blood levels to rise.

So, her husband’s self-destructive nature cost me a star. Oh well, I suppose that’s a small price to pay.


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  1. Perhaps you can add a section in the next revision of the book on how people can overcome their own self-destructive natures. I’m reading a book on that right now, and I’ve lost about five pounds since I started.

  2. “If you cheat on this plan, you will gain weight and probably cause your blood levels to rise.”
    Makes one wonder: does she know of a plan for managing diabetes or for weight-loss which, if you cheat on it, you will maintain or continue to lose weight and maintain the same blood glucose levels?
    Must be some sort of moderate or high carbohydrate plan, wouldn’t you think?
    THAT is plan truly deserving of five-stars.

  3. (Emerges from a very long and very hidden lurkdom…)
    I once read a lovely little article (sugar.ca, was it? I honestly don’t remember and I can’t find it there anymore) about a lower carb diet also known as Montignac (mostly known in France, Quebec and Mediterranean) – Montignac diet is not recommended because, if you do not follow it, you will not lose weight.
    I suppose they’ve taken this little gem off their site, but it shall never cease to amaze me what excuses people use to justify whatever point they have. Life seems to be just a high school debate club nowadays.
    (Goes back to lurkdom and reading your wonderful blog.)
    Hi Ice–
    I’m glad you surfaced. Lurk on to your heart’s content.
    Cheers–
    MRE

  4. dr mike,
    i so love that! i was at a dinner party recently, again being quizzed on my diet because i had the audacity to skip the pasta, breaded fish and dessert and was yelled at (yes, actually yelled at) by a guest who turned out to be a doctor and told me low carb was “stupid” because as soon as you went back to eating carbs you would regain the lost weight and if i was “as smart as i looked”, i’d switch to a “healthy low-fat diet with lots of whole grains”. and people wonder why i rarely go to doctors…
    best,
    ida
    Pretty unbelievable. Actually (and sadly) not so unbelievable I guess.

  5. What has happened to even the perception of personal responsibility? YOU lose a star because HER husband cheats? What is this country coming to?
    As for Ida, I’ve been there. People who have absolutely no knowledge either way try to tell me how to eat–the fact that is was a doctor who did the same thing really takes the cake!(Yeah, throw the cake in the garbage)
    The last time I saw my internist, I had lost ten pounds. She did not question me as to what I was doing, she happily told me to continue with whatever plan I was on. I think she doesn’t want to have to question and contradict me, so she leaves me alone. Good Thing.

  6. Sounds like my mother. She has excessive cholesterol and high blood pressure and needs to lose weight, at least 40 or more lbs. Anyways, this is how it goes with us when I confront her about what she eats…
    Me: Mom, you need stop eating those starchy carbs. Mom: I’m NOT eating carbs anymore!! Me: what did you eat for lunch today? Mom: I ate at SouperSalad Me: Did you eat any of the pizza there? Mom: just the tiniest little sliver with really thin crust Me: you shouldn’t be eating pizza. Did you have a frappuccino today? Mom: I just had a tall LIGHT mocha frapp but it was light ( — still like 19 grams of sugar– ) Me: Mom, you can’t have those even if they are light, it’s only half splenda. What did you have for breakfast? Mom: just the tiniest amount of Cheerios. Me: MOM, you’ve eaten TONS of carbs today!! How can you tell me you don’t eat carbs anymore? I heard you ate at Olive Garden last night, you didn’t eat the pasta did you? Mom: just the tiniest amount of spaghetti noodles……
    Sigh.
    Oh, and this will really get ya. So, I sent her some links about the movie FatHead. Sunday was my daughter’s birthday party and my mom had cake and she said, well, at least the fat in it is balancing it out. UGH OH!!! MOM, starchy carbs and fat are the WORST combination! The fat didn’t balance it out.
    Not sure if we SHOULD let people know it’s not the fat, b/c then they’ll eat tons of fat AND tons of white bread and get even BIGGER!! =O some people just don’t get it, my mother included.

  7. 1. I follow a diet plan. I lose a lot of weight and feel great.
    2. I stop following the diet plan and go back to the way I used to eat that made me fat.
    3. Now I am fat again. And this is the fault of the diet plan because…what, it didn’t have some built-in mechanism that forced me to eat that way forever?
    How stupid are people? Don’t anyone answer that–I already have a pretty good idea. What’s really exasperating is when you hear nutritionists and dieticians dismissing low-carbohydrate plans using this very line of reasoning.

  8. I don’t know if anyone cares about Dr. Agatston…
    Tune in to Bloomberg Night Talk tomorrow, July 3, at 10 pm to see Dr. Agatston discuss his new bestseller The South Beach Diet Supercharged, as well as The South Beach Heart Health Revolution and the tragic death of Tim Russert.
    I haven’t read his Supercharged book yet so maybe I’ll watch.
    Dr Eades, what do you think of the South Beach approach? I wonder if anyone gives his books less stars b/c they fail at it 🙂
    In my opinion the South Beach approach is okay, but it’s got some problems. First, (at least in the first book – I haven’t read the second) Dr. Agatston recommends fructose since it doesn’t raise insulin. Bad idea. And he has people avoid saturated fat. Another bad idea. Finally, he declares that what is obviously a low-carb diet not to be a low-carb diet while bashing low-carb diets.

  9. For several years, I’ve given your books as presents to people. I sent my brother all of them. In 2003, when I had the unhappy task of visiting him in the hospital, I also stayed at his house. There, on his elegant bookshelves were all of your books, unopened and unread. He died (age 75) and I wondered, and still do wonder, whether changing his diet from masses of Sarah Lee frozen poundcake to a delicious low-carb regimen might have changed the outcome.
    Marly

  10. I have to say, though, one thing I really like about John Berardi’s approach is the way he tracks compliance and expects a certain amount of cheating (10% of meals). I do think it’s more livable if you accept that occasionally you’ll want to have something you shouldn’t, and plan and track accordingly.

  11. the comments by people that rated PP one star make for some humorous reading
    cheers! dr mike thanks again for writing the book

  12. Dr Mike,
    Here’s a suggestion for your next book, or if you don’t want it maybe I’ll try it!
    Title: Cheat on your diet and lose! Lose weight by planning to eat donuts for breakfast, pie for lunch and cake and ice cream for dinner! And cheat! When no one is looking, flush the pie and grab a chicken leg.
    By simply cheating on the donut and pie diet you will lose weight. And no one will suspect you of cheating if you simply dab some donut crumbs on your face. A little reverse psychology perhaps? 🙂
    Great idea. I’ll get the proposal together ASAP.
    Cheers–
    MRE

  13. The folks who recounted episodes with (to be kind,) unhelpful physicians, reminded me of my visit to an internist some time ago.
    My then new health insurance company pays for an annual exam. I’d not had one in years, so I presented to the doctor I’d chosen as my Primary Care Physician (primarily out of geographic convenience.) He examined me and as we were concluding he asked, “So how is your diet?” “uhh…O.K.”, I replied, not quite sure what he meant or what he was really asking. “Good then.” He responded, seeming, to me, to be relieved that I’d given a reply that could be briefly and favorably summarized in his notes and that would not extend the length of my visit. He then said a quick goodbye and left the room. I might have asked him about his suggestions, but his body language made clear to me that he wanted no part of that and that he had merely asked the question out of “obligation”.
    I have always thought of that brief exchage;
    “So how is your diet?”
    “Uh…O.K.”
    “Good then,”
    as speaking volumes with respect to the level of care and prevention.

  14. The level of acceptance people have for their own destructive behaviors is what is sad. That and they put to much ownership to something….like “I’m going to eat bad just because that is the way I am…and I can’t change that”. I see too many people wearing that self-destructive badge of honor with pride. Why? That ownership is what is keeping people sick, as they really need to understand they own nothing….are not an illness or disease…and are only a continuous daily choice they make…so stop living in the past and just worry about what they need to do right now. If they were hypotinized to forget everything about the past…I bet they would have success in whatever they do. There’s the real power, just being aware of the now and forgetting the rest. Maybe medicine needs to stop “giving” people diseases….stop the ownership part of it…and just tell them they are experiencing “high insulin resistance” or whatever the route cause is and let people understand they have control of what they can do about it. No more badges to show off.

  15. The astounding refusal to take responsibility for one’s own actions revolts me. Had she said that your plan was too limiting, and too difficult to stick to in a real life situation, I could see possibly docking you a star. But, alas, that was not the case. She and her husband are twits. Actually, what tends to offend me about people and their perceptions of different diets is:
    1) Most of them never bother to read the book
    2) Most of them never try to follow the diet as written
    3) Most of them make up their own garbage diet, consisting of more Frankenfood, and almost no real food
    4) After their stylized attempt at whichever diet they considered trying, they loudly proclaim “XXXX Diet doesn’t work, I did it, and I gained 75 pounds!”
    5) Or, if they DID actually follow the diet, when they stop the diet, the blame the diet for their gains when they go back off! Incredible!
    That stated, with over a decade of controlled carbohydrate consumption in my background, I will admit that I will add in elements from other controlled carbohydrate plans, and fabricate my own diet from a broad range of controlled carbohydrate research. But, if I were to start having issues, I would try to drop back to one plan or another, and then tweak from there.
    A few years ago, I had been on a very low carbohydrate plan, and I accidentally discovered that it gave great control for some chronic medical conditions that I suffer with. (Menieres disease, and migraines) When I went in to my doctor, and mentioned that I had achieved greater symptom control from my disease with a diet other than what was prescribed, he looked at me strangely. Then he mentioned that there is a doctor in Detroit Michigan researching low carbohydrate diet to control Menieres disease. Obviously, some other people experienced the same thing that I did!
    As a doctor who is a popular author with what, to the medical establishment, is renegade teachings, how do you take the pressure? I KNOW that what is published as reviews is usually just outright lies from people who never bothered to read the book to begin with. I’ve actually been forward enough to get a doctor who did a review of a popular diet book to print a retraction, and an apology for having not read the book before reviewing it… That experience made me really question much of the review process among “Respected professionals” What is the biggest misinformation that is spread about your plan? I KNOW the most common misinformation spread about the Atkins and Carbohydrate Addicts plans.
    Probably the biggest misinformation spread about our regimen is the same as that for Atkins: it will damage your kidneys and clog your arteries. Those seem to be the ones thrown up to me the most. And most of the time these accusations are made by twits. 🙂

  16. Whenever I talk about my diet (high fat, medium protein, low carb), people always ask about my cholesterol levels and “Do you worry about your heart?”
    I tell them that heart health and cholesterol is the biggest reason why I chose this lifestyle and that I carefully monitor it: 145 LDL (measured), 55 HDL, 70 triglycerides, low Lp(a), improving particle size, etc.
    The strange thing is: they don’t seem to hear the statement that the reason I chose the diet is for heart health. They only seem to hear that I’m keeping a close eye on my cholesterol and assume that I’m watching it closely because I expect it to be a problem. Most of them assume that it’s only a matter of time before my cholesterol levels go completely off the charts.
    It’s very interesting (if a little depressing) to understand what people choose to hear and what they choose not to hear.

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