Chapter 11: part 2 - Personalized Nutrition

Post 25 of 365

This is part 15 of my review in Layman's terms of the book 'The Art and Science of Low carbohydrate Living' By Jeff S. Volek, PhD, RD & Stephen D. Phinney, MD, PhD

Personalized Nutrition - Where to Start?

Exert from book ' It seems reasonable to target nutrients that represent dietary triggers capable of pushing someone from susceptibility to disease. Since they are consumed in larger quantities, it makes sense that macronutrients would exert some of the most powerful signals.'

Why We respond More Acutely to Carbohydrate than to Fat Intake

The two main reasons why individualized carb levels is a logical thing to do, 1/ human intake of carbs is broad,because it is not an essential nutrient in the diet, so carbs can be tolerated in very small and very large amounts in different humans. 2/ carb consumption in downstream regulatory may trigger and induce metabolic state. Glucose regulation in the body is necessary for brain maintenance , unless blood ketones are present in a low carb diet.

Human Adaptability and Carbohydrate

As we are all as humans built basically the same with common physiology, our bodies individually can adapt to varying nutritional input. By removing most of the carbs from your dietary intake, adaption should take place within 2 weeks, in studies with doing this, nobody dies or looses consciousness, they simply adapt into a healthy manner. In studies it has come through that metabolically not everybody can thrive on a high carb diet but can all strive on a low carb diet. Higher carbohydrate intake in many will struggle to maintain health, as in the last few decades i which it was advised to increase carb intake and lower fat intake in the daily diet, at this time the population has increased overweight or obesity, increased type 2 diabetes, increased insulin resistance increased cardiovascular disease, increased BP etc. Any of these conditions (plus many more) may indicate you have a carbohydrate intolerance, this is where it gets personal and so personal nutrition is called for.

How Much Does Genotype Matter?

Studies are continually on going and more and more slowly is being discovered about SNPs, Single nucleotide polymorhisms. The contribution of any given individual SNP variant to weight loss is relatively small, but when a multitude of SNPs combine the total genetic contribution can be better explained and better linked to illnesses such as type 2 diabetes.

Personalizing diet, Beyond Genetics

With further studies it is consistent that insulin resistance is a manifestation of carbohydrate intolerance, and shows this condition is best treated with a limited carbohydrate diet. This does not inform individuals of how much carb to restrict and this is most likely a matter of personalized nutrition.

Markers of Carbohydrate Intolerance Beyond Insulin

With carbohydrate intolerance, metabolically translates to moving carb away from skeletal muscle and towards the liver. With this if the liver glycogen stores (stored carbohydrate)are full a lot of the dietary carb intake will convert to fat. This damage of elevated triglycerides in the blood and liver from fat made from carbohydrate may take a while but damage is imminent. Over long term carbohydrate tolerance is associated with slowed weight loss or even weight gain. Raised triglycerides is another way of looking at carbohydrate intolerance.

Serum Triglyceride Level vs Composition

From text - triglyceride levels in plasma are a function of how fast they are entering the bloodstream compared to how quickly they are being removed. After any previous meal has been digested and absorbed, the only source of new triglyceride in the circulation is the liver, which secretes VLDL made from free fatty acids, other lipoprotein remnants, or fatty acids newly made from glucose. The fact here is VLDLare the worse type of cholesterol that you do not want to rise these are the ones that cause the damage to cholesterol levels.


The effects of types and amounts of food vary between individuals, leading to the argument for tailoring diets. The research is continuing and the biologically based argument is strong for tailoring diets for individuals.

My Thoughts

As a Clinical Nutritionist I strongly recommend personalized nutrition as we are all individuals . The basic dietary guide lines suggested in the main stream of nutrition is a rough guide for a healthy person !!!! Most people trying to follow it are not healthy!!!! sometimes it is with trial and error but evidence based studies are releasing more and more proof of personalizing nutritional treatment and dietary guide lines for every body.

Keryn xxx

#nutrition #personalizednutrition #questionsonlowcarb #reducingcarbs

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