Wednesday, February 2, 2011

How Evolutionary Is The New Evolution Diet? Review of Art De Vany's New Book

by Chris Masterjohn

My review of Art De Vany's new book, The New Evolution Diet is now posted:


If you feel so inspired, come back and leave comments here!

Read more about the author, Chris Masterjohn, PhD, here.

48 comments:

  1. We have surely changed our gut flora over the past 10,000 years. Maybe even in the past 100 years, considering our forgotten approaches to maternal health (pre-pregnancy diets and everything along that spectrum of health including spacing of children, and post natal infant diets which reach into many subsequent generations) thus changing our responses to the environment and to food.
    Does Dr. DeVany speak to gut flora at all?

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  2. Anonymous, good points. No, he doesn't.

    Chris

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  3. I made a few changes:

    Paragraph 2 -- "Nevertheless, I would hesitate to give this book to a beginning, for reasons outlined in the conclusion."

    Got rid of "huge step up from SAD"

    End of Sec 2 -- "Unfortunately, there is so much potentially harmful dietary advice in this book that it could prove to be a step down from the Standard American Diet depending on how it is executed. Many people may begin throwing egg whites and chicken skin away, rather than cutting out the white bread or starting high-intensity interval training. Some may suffer harm from these changes and others may just find a low-fat, low-carb diet impossible to stay on."

    Completely got rid of the 'decent book' section at the end and added this:

    "Ultimately, this book has many good insights, but none that haven't been offered elsewhere. It opens up the potential for a beginner to try a low-fat, low-carb diet, and give up on getting healthy after always being hungry. It opens up the opportunity for the dieter with pre-conceived notions — you know, the kind who tries to do the Atkins diet "low-fat" style — to institute the worst recommendations at the expense of the best.

    I would recommend reading this book if you have a personal connection to Dr. De Vany and you'd like to help him out — but I would think twice about recommending it to a friend or family member."

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  4. I was merely interested in the book inasmuch as it might have useful exercise advice. Is the book worth it for that content at all?

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  5. Not really, although if you consider it worth paying $13-15 for an essay, Nicholas Taleb has an awesome essay as the afterword.

    Chris

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  6. Thanks for the review and perspective Chris. I respect the recognized "grandfather" and the paleo movement since I owe in large part my dramatic weight loss and improved health to it even though my diet has evolved to more align with WAPF principles.

    Dairy, fat, and eggs like all whole foods have so much to offer. The benefits should be considered with serious thought to who we are and who we were avoiding bias and any form of "centrism".

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  7. I appreciate the skeptical and intelligent viewpoint, Chris, why not apply it also to Tim Ferris?

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  8. You're welcome Donald.

    Praguestepchild, because Ferris's book is very open-ended, oriented toward self-experimentation, and contains very little if any dogmatic statements. There are also no gross misunderstandings and distortions of science, perhaps because Ferris doesn't pretend to be a scientist so much. One could take the critical approach towards all his ideas, but I chose not to because he was claiming so little. I was also somewhat biased for being featured in the book, which I noted at the beginning, though I think that affected the enthusiasm more than the content of my review. Is there anything particular you think I should have called him out on?

    Thanks,
    Chris

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  9. Chris, I haven't read the book and don't plan to. I've read his blog and heard him boast about beating up Superman and saving the world and such stuff and that was a deal-breaker for me.

    If you don't have a problem with Ferris who am I to quibble? I just think that intellectual honesty should be applied across the board. I haven't read De Vany's book because I wasn't impressed with what he had to say about chaos theory http://praguestepchild.blogspot.com/2010/12/is-body-really-chaotic-system.html A small thing, perhaps, but if one wants to argue from a position of scientific authority, don't go throwing around terms one doesn't seem to understand.

    I'm happy to see you cast knowledgeable and critical eye on De Vany as I was already skeptical from what little exposure I'd had. I'd just like to see that critical eye cast upon all and sundry.

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  10. BTW, De Vany claims he doesn't have any idea how the plug for Canola oil got into his book.

    While its been a while since I've been to his site (paywall) I don't remember him plugging it as a blogger.

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  11. Hi. Just wanted to thell you that the link to your article on "Meeting the Choline Requirement -- Eggs, Organs, and the Wheat Paradox" has an error.

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  12. Praguestepchild,

    Well I agree that intellectual honesty should be applied across the board, but the flaws you point out in Ferris and De Vany are quite different. You say you didn't buy Ferriss's book because, essentially, you don't like him *personally.* You say you didn't buy De Vany's book because you think his science is off. While many people have some legitimate objection to Tim's "hype," I think the science in the book is pretty sound, which derives in part because Ferris utilizes so many experts but especially because he claims so little.

    If I wanted to criticize De Vany on a personal level, perhaps I'd have taken a shot at his story about how he was Rollerblading with no shirt on, and some girl started chasing after him not realizing he was old enough to be her grandfather. Actually, I think Ferris's book is rather devoid of those types of stories, whether is blog is or isn't.

    Walter, thanks. I think he should take responsibility for everything in his book -- certainly he got to see it before it was published?

    smgj -- thanks! I'm on it.

    Chris

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  13. Chris,
    Great review, you basically summed up all my problems with this book as well as articulating so well the issues that just didn't seem right to me at the time (evolution has stopped?!?). I just can't understand his fear of egg yolks and red meat, and upon reading as much, decided to continue on and take the rest with a grain of salt. I purchased the book because I wanted to see what all the De Vany hype was about in the paleo community, and was subsequently underwhelmed. Even Richard Nikoley (www.freetheanimal.com), who credits De Vany with his start in "paleo", has diverged from De Vany a great deal and has even been criticized and attacked by Art for the points of diversion. So, De Vany seems to fall into the "stubborn" category for me, refusing to acknowledge that what works so well for him (and he is quite a specimen at his age) may not be the optimal method for all. Sure, people will improve their health by dropping the SAD, but De Vany seems to be unwilling to shift his views because he spent so much time and energy on his method that to admit any previous errors would be to invalidate his entire platform (cognitive dissonance).
    I enjoy your blog and writing thoroughly, and it is refreshing to see that people our age (I'm 23) are immersed in this culture of health and nutrition. Congrats on the doctoral candidacy, and I hope all of your work is given the respect and exposure that it so desperately needs.

    Regards,

    Sean

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  14. Chris,

    Yes, that's a good point. I mostly take issue with Ferris's style not the substance, which I frankly don't know that much about. As opposed to De Vany whom I also know little about, but struck me as misusing scientific concepts.

    Also, I realize this sort of over-the-top, I used to beat up grizzlies blindfolded stuff is pretty common in the fitness world.

    I would love to see more honest criticism in the paleo/whatever sphere. That's why I applaud your review of De Vany's book. It's the first serious criticism I've seen and confirms my own nitpickings.

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  15. Too bad you got the "fat is poison" completely wrong. I referred to body fat, not fat in the diet. Body fat does all sorts of metabolic damage, which I cover thoroughly, even pointing to imaging studies that show diminished brain mass in the obese.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for weighing in. I found the quote "Fat is poison" (very first sentence BTW) from Mr Masterjohn troubling as well. Contextomy?

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  16. Hi Dr. De Vany,

    Thanks for commenting. I do not think I misrepresented this comment. This is what I wrote:

    ========
    De Vany's opposition to egg yolks seems to derive from his ultimate view that "fat is poison" (p. 10). Although he meant this particular quote to apply to body fat, he has similar views of dietary fat (p.44):

    "The term 'good oils' is somewhat of a misnomer, because the truth is that no fat is partcularly good for you."
    =========

    I connected this comment by analogy, but I think I clearly and explicitly explained the context in which you used the quote immediately after presenting the quote.

    I agree that body fat can be involved in metabolic damage, but it can also be involved in metabolic health. It's an organ that, like any other organ, can become dysregulated and contribute to disease under certain circumstances.

    Chris

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  17. The article referenced states "in the presence of fat the insulin response was not reduced." (AmJClinNutr 1983;37:941-944)
    Although the postprandial glucose response was reduced, the insulin response was not affected.
    What do you take from the results?
    Isn't this what matters more with regards to insulin resistance?

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  18. Might-o'chondri-ALFebruary 3, 2011 at 1:55 PM

    Always find your writing style enjoyable to follow along with. I've apparently been living in a cave since never heard of Dr. DeVany.

    He seems to be attempting to reconcile modern food trends with an interpretation of evolutionary diet. Your writing interprets modern food research and attempts to reconcile it with evolution.
    We can all be mistaken some of the times.

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  19. Thanks ...AL.

    Anonymous, that is correct. The fat blunts the glucose, but not the insulin. I think the insulin plays a role in stabilizing the glucose, in fact. Since I do not believe that insulin causes insulin resistance, nor that all insulin resistance is necessarily pathological, I do not see that as a reason for concern.

    Chris

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  20. Excellent review, Chris. It was clear you wrote it with care.

    Dr. DeVany's contributions are tremendous, but it was nice to hear the straight-shooting regarding this particular effort.

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  21. Correction to one of your corrections (end of sec 2): "Many people may begin throwing egg whites and chicken skin away" - should be egg yolks.

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  22. Sean, thanks for your good points and kind comments. I'm 29, so a little oldish, but glad to have you on board. I was 22 when I started writing about nutrition.

    Anonymous, thanks. Yes, I know some awesome people who, though they've diverged from De Vany quite a bit, found real food in large part through him.

    Susan, thanks -- fixed it.

    Chris

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  23. I don't know if he missed it in the proof reading or not. I doubt someone just slipped it in on him, but then I can recall several conversations I've had with people where they thought I said 180 degrees the opposite of what I did, so who knows.

    I myself diverge quite a bit from Art diet wise, most days I'm zero carb and as far as exercise goes I'm in agreement with him as far as the big picture goes, but disagree (drastically) about details.

    That said I found somethings in the book useful. I wanted more information than I got but still learned.

    Art's said on his blog stuff I've questioned and then while doing my own research found things that confirmed it.

    No one has it all right. Mike Eades might with regard to nutrition, but I disagree with him on exercise. Kurt Harris is awesome, but admits (to his credit) that exercise is not his thing.

    Those of us who are not researchers have to go to multiple sources and determine where they are credible and where they are not.

    I've taken basic anatomy and physiology, biology and chemistry. I'm not a researcher, I can follow the basic science.

    Art has always said he doesn't want followers. Whether he means it or not (and I only bring that point up because I've studied quite a bit of psychology and think its the very rare individual who means it).... As you have pointed out he has gotten many who have diverged on the path to eating real food.

    Hell, a major break through for me came from reading the book of a conman with umpteen better business bureau complaints. He said if you don't believe this check a college level biochemisty book out of the library. I did and found that he was telling the truth about something important. He was selling BS supplements that I didn't buy, but I learned.

    So I guess my point is that critical thinking is required.

    BTW, I really appreciate your article about fatty liver disease and choline and egg yokes.

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  24. Hi Walter,

    I agree that there is good information in this book. I didn't mean to make a sweeping condemnation of the book and certainly not of Dr. De Vany himself. However, overall I would say that what is good in this book can easily be found elsewhere, and there is an awful lot of nonsense. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to someone who is a critical thinking for the sake of brainstorming, but I would definitely hesitate to give it to an uncritical beginner as an introduction to diet, for reasons I stated in the review.

    I agree that we should try to learn from everything.

    Chris

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  25. An excellent critical review of De Vany's book. Thank you for picking apart his claims! My background is in mathematics, so I learn a lot by reading your work. There so much confounding information about the human diet available at the lay person level. Unfortunately, his book has added to the heap.

    I find a low-fat paleo style diet unbearable and it's where I disagree with Cordain too. I tried Cordain's approach and failed; I was constantly hungry. Once I kicked up the animal fat content when I tried again, I felt well and began to get results. I also eat potatoes and like cream. I love chicken skin and lard. *gasp* I can't yet pull a Land Rover with my great toe, but I'm getting leaner and healthier as the weeks pass.

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  26. I wonder my Nassim Taleb is doing so well on Professor De Vany's diet given how suboptimal you think it is.

    You said: " De Vany argues that it is not our fault we are fat, because we are genetically programmed to be lazy overeaters (p. 92), but that it is also not our fault for judging obese people too harshly because the stigma of obesity probably evolved as an adaptation "during evolutionary times, when obesity was rare and almost surely indicated that that person was taking more from the group than they were contributing to it" (p. 179)"

    Where does Professor De Vany say 'it is not our fault for judging obese people too harshly'? You are paraphrasing him poorly, making it seem as if he is saying we can't help being harsh, we evolved that way, so we get a pass. Actually he says we are being ignorant when we harshly judge the obese: " We ignore our genetic legacy when we label the obese as lazy and unwilling to limit their food intake." p. 92.

    Also he does not say to never eat egg yolks. page 65: "Eggs are healthy, but you should skip the yolks now and then." He gives a detailed reason why on his blog that I will dig up and post here.

    There were also some things that were misstated in the book that Professor De Vany inadvertently let slip by. On his blog he says the preferring white meat over red meat was one such mistake- he said he prefers red over white. One blogger passed on the bogus idea she got from some third party Professor De Vany said he had to give into pressure from the publisher to advocate a lower fat approach. Dr. De Vany categorically denied that when I asked him about it.

    When I was in my freshman year of college, I gained 15 pounds to weigh 145 lbs at 5'3''. When I went overseas to Taiwan and ate lots of Chinese food, including dreaded soy products at every meal, I weighed 115 lbs. I had lots of energy and very thick hair. Later when I came back to the US and especially after I had children, my weight went up to 148 to 152. I tell you this because I think when you are young in your 20s, it is very easy to lose weight with many different approaches, including eating lots of soy which is a no-no in your book I believe. Therefore, I seek the advice of older people who are have more metabolic challenges with advancing age. For example, I would tend to follow Richard Nickoley's advice over a 20 something's. And I believe Richard's approach is not all that different from Professor De Vany's, which is why he recommends Professor De Vany's book on his blog.

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  27. v/vmary,

    You make a few good points. I agree that my wording regarding the obesity stigma was somewhat unclear, so I made some small changes to improve it. It now read this way:

    "De Vany argues that it is not entirely our fault we are fat, because we are genetically programmed to be lazy overeaters (p. 92), but also suggests that, though the stigma currently is maladaptive, our propensity to judge obese people too harshly probably evolved as an adaptation 'during evolutionary times, when obesity was rare and almost surely indicated that that person was taking more from the group than they were contributing to it' (p. 179)."

    My point was not where he is placing blame, but that he was offering "just so" stories reducing cultural beliefs to heritable evolutionary adaptations with no evidence other than creative stories.

    I'm not sure why you thing Taleb is on Art De Vany's diet, as it seems to me he has his own diet. Either way, De Vany himself seems to be doing well. I never once suggested that *no one* could do well on De Vany's diet. Indeed, it would be incredibly difficult to find any diet that *no one* could do well on.

    I agree that De Vany does not completely condemn the egg yolk, but the deifnition of "now and then" is very vague. If you look through the "A Month on the New Evolution Diet," you will see that he discards most of the yolks.

    For example:
    p. 59 -- three egg whites
    p. 63 -- two whites, one yolk
    p. 64 -- two egg whites
    p. 65 -- four egg whites, two egg yolks
    p. 68 -- one egg white
    p. 70 -- three egg whites, one yolk
    p. 80 -- unspecified number of eggs (let's say 3)
    p. 82 -- three whites, one or two yolks

    So here we have 21 egg whites and 9 or 10 yolks. I'm not sure if this is entirely comprehensive but it is the references to eggs that caught my eye. He's clearly throwing away the majority of egg yolks.

    I believe that Richard Nikoley gave this book a good review because Richard found the paleo movement largely through De Vany. I know a number of other people who found paleo through De Vany, and none of them, including Richard, throw away their yolks or use canola oil. Richard does not strike me as much of a 'follower' of anyone, but he has linked to lots of my articles and favorably reviewed much of my information. I don't think Richard judges information based on the age of the person writing it. However, I agree with you that it makes sense to learn from people who are older than we are. I try to do that as a general rule, though I don't give automatic deference to someone's point of view solely on that criterion.

    Chris

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  28. Thanks michah! Glad you find the blog useful! I could stand to learn some math for sure.

    Chris

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  29. PS Just to back up what I said about Richard's approach not being far from Professor De Vany's, if you look at the comments section of his review of Professor De Vany's book, Richard writes: "I wouldn’t call it a _major_ difference of opinion. He recommends to moderate fat in general. I don’t. But, I no longer go out of my way to add fat, i.e., lots of coconut milk & such, and I don’t spoon coconut oil as some do." So Richard has no major difference of opinion with Professor De Vany, he is also closer to my age, has been obese, and so is more credible to me.

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  30. Chris Masterjohn said: "My point was not where he is placing blame, but that he was offering "just so" stories reducing cultural beliefs to *heritable* evolutionary adaptations with no evidence other than creative stories." I must be lacking sensitivity to language, so be patient with me, but where does Professor De Vany say that the propensity to judge obese people harshly was a heritable adaptation? Your

    Also you missed my point about age completely. It is because our bodies don't generally run as well when we are older (say 40s on) compared to when we are younger. That is why an older person who does well on a diet with all the metabolic issues they have to struggle through has more credibility than a 20 something with a less metabolically challenged body. Now if you show me a 20 something who was very obese and diabetic who did well on the diet you recommend, that would also carry a lot of weight. Was my point really that hard to understand? Did you really think I was saying I listen to my elders just because they are elderly? Where is the rolling eyes emoticon???

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  31. Chris Masterjohn said: "I'm not sure why you thing Taleb is on Art De Vany's diet, as it seems to me he has his own diet."

    Taleb says he follows Professor De Vany's diet. Not only that, but he is an advocate for Professor De vany's diet, ie he thinks it is a good choice for all people period. I admit I am a little biased towards Mr. Taleb. I give the words of smart people a lot of weight.

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  32. Have to agree with Devany that you mischaracterized him as a lipophobe - he probably gets 50% of his calories from fat.

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  33. v/vmary,

    Usually when people explain a psychological trait as something that "began in evolutionary times" with an adaptive function, they are suggesting it is a heritable adaptation. If that is not what De Vany meant, and he personally corrects me, or someone can convince me from something he has written that this is not what he meant, I will gladly change it.

    I think I did understand your point about age, and I'm sorry if I didn't clearly communicate that. I agree with you that people who are more sensitive to metabolic problems may offer clearer cases of what a good diet is. However, I would be careful reading too much into that as metabolic problems can simply alter dietary requirements. One person might not tolerate fat, another carbohydrate, maybe another protein, but these could be peculiarities of their particular metabolic problem.

    Taleb says he eats "no carbs that do not have a Biblical Hebrew or Doric Greek name (i.e., did not exist in the ancient Mediterranean)." I think that's his own rule, not De Vany's. He seems to primarily credit De Vany with his exercise routine.

    I would give Taleb weight. Heck, I considered De Vany's book worth reading and reviewing. I would not ignore either of them.

    Anonymous, nowhere in the book does anyone get the impression the diet is 50% fat. De Vany has almost zero to say about the importance or benefits of consuming fat. If I mischaracterized him on that point, it seems to be because his book did so. But I'm open to reconsidering the point.

    Chris

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  34. An accurate review. A step up from the SAD for most, but unfortunately still quite steeped in the lipid hypothesis, and therefore helping promulgate that dangerous dietary meme. A vegetarian diet with pastured eggs and full fat dairy would be healthier than all the chicken breasts, egg whites and "lean meats".

    I also wonder if anyone has run the sample days through fitday - they looked rather hypocaloric to me, especially for a strapping man with high testosterone levels.

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  35. Chris Masterjohn writes:

    "Taleb says he eats "no carbs that do not have a Biblical Hebrew or Doric Greek name (i.e., did not exist in the ancient Mediterranean)." I think that's his own rule, not De Vany's. He seems to primarily credit De Vany with his exercise routine."

    Taleb writes as the las 2 sentences in his afterword to Professor De Vany's book: "So good luck with the regimen. I've been on it for close to 3 years and my intellectual production keeps getting greater."

    I think we can assume that by the word "regimen" used in the afterword in a book with the word "Diet" in it, that Taleb is including the concept of *diet* in his endorsement of the book. In other words, he is a believer in the De Vany guidelines for *diet*. His diet mentioned in the afterword follows those guidelines. He is close to my age and was overweight. He has had ongoing success with the diet. He is very smart. Therefore his endorsement of De Vany means more to me than a criticism of the De Vany guidelines coming from someone much younger than me who never had metabolic issues. Dr. Harris is close to my age, but has never been never fat. De Vany has never been fat either, but his guidelines work for the most metabolically challenged and have the longest record of success that I know about.

    I do think that Professor De Vany has cleared up some contentious points, but he only does that on his blog, so if you are not a subscriber, you are missing out. It's like $40 a year- not a lot for even a cheapskate like me who used to get around paying the fee by coming into the blog via a google search before he closed that loophole.

    I remember in response to one poster who wrote that he ate a lot of eggs with the yolks everyday from his own hens, Professor De Vany wrote that (paraphrasing here) the poster's activity level probably mitigated all the fat he was taking in, but that most people who eat lots of eggs with the yolks are getting a surge of fat to their system. Then they get in their cars to go to office jobs where they just sit around. So in that context, which prevails for many people (all the people not employed in physically demanding jobs), eating lots of yolks is problematic. He explained more of the science, but I need to find that info and quote him directly since i am science-challenged :(

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  36. Hi again!
    Chris Masterjohn wrote: "Usually when people explain a psychological trait as something that "began in evolutionary times" with an adaptive function, they are suggesting it is a heritable adaptation. If that is not what De Vany meant, and he personally corrects me, or someone can convince me from something he has written that this is not what he meant, I will gladly change it."

    De Vany does not use any words on page 179 indicating that the attitude towards fat people is heritable. I would never have that interpretation because, as far as I know, *no one* makes the claims that attitudes are biological heritable. Where did you hear that concept? Could you site some references? Ideas/attitudes/culture are passed down through time, yes, but this is not a function of heritability. Just because he used the phrase "...began during evolutionary times..." you went off on that tangent? I just took that phrase to me in the early period of the evolution of homo sapiens.

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  37. Thanks, Dr. Harris.

    v/vmary, I will concede the point about Taleb as I think it is quite immaterial. I do not get the sense that he follow's De Vany's diet very precisely based on his own description, so I suspect he is using the phrase rather loosely when he writes that he is on "the regimen," but it really has no bearing on the points I've made in my review. I never claimed that any given person would not do great on De Vany's diet. Especially if one executes the good recommendations more often than the poor ones, which is clearly left up to the reader, as De Vany never tells anyone how many egg yolks they should throw away or exactly how much butter to cheat with.

    I recognize that De Vany has a blog, but I was writing a review of his book. A book can and should be self-contained.

    I think his view on egg yolks as you just described is very problematic. I would rather someone not eat eggs than to eat egg whites because of their beliefs about dietary fat or calories.

    Thanks for your comments,
    Chris

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  38. v/vmary, well I at least agree with you that most attitudes are probably not biologically heritable, but the view that they are is can be found in evolutionary psychology and sociobiology, and the language that Dr. De Vany used seems very close to what you'd find in a sociobiological explanation.

    Chris

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  39. I like your comment on his bizarre suggestion that the modern aversion to obesity comes from prehistoric people who ate more than their fair share. A silly suggestion, but it brings up a point that I've always found interesting. Aside from sociological factors, it appears that we're wired to be attracted not only to our own species, of course, but to very specific features of our natural anatomy. In general, we find people whose bodies diverge from our natural state to be less attractive. This includes both the obese and people with poorly developed facial bones from prenatal or childhood malnutrition. I've been convinced of this for quite a while, but unfortunately the evidence requires a lot of guesswork.

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  40. It's funny because the diet he listed for 2005 when I was a huge fan is identical in fat content to my current diet at about 100 grams a day based on an estimate from Nutritiondata
    "Day 1

    Breakfast: three eggs with one yolk omlette style with fresh rosemary from my yard. Three link sausages. Three slices of honeydew melon and two slices of cantelope. Two cups of coffee.

    Lunch: a handful of mixed nuts. About half a roasted chicken over romaine lettuce with some raw broccoli pieces. A large chunk of chopped ginger. With balsamic vinegar and olive oil. One Budweiser beer.

    Dinner: a few nuts before dinner. A mustard green salad with blue cheese dressing. Two smoked pork chops, six asperagas spears, a large piece of broccoli. Half a cup of coffee."

    Contrast that with the 40-50 grams I estimate from most of the meals advocated in his book.

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  41. Chris, either your review has mistakes or the book has even more mistakes. You quote DeVany saying that "A combined carb-fat load would have been an extremely rare even in the nutritional history of our species." Clearly bad grammar and should be "event." One of the Amazon reviewers said he suggests consumption of CASTOR oil on p. 44, not canola. That must be a typo. Castor oil isn't taken internally, is it? That could kill people. Maybe the typo was fixed to canola oil in your edition. I've never seen him mention canola oil, though. He calls his diet Paleo-Med and favors olive oil and nuts and fish, as I recall.

    Anyway, his book looks like a sell-out. Maybe his publisher made him mention canola oil, as Sally Fallon claims is common. I haven't read Art's blog recently, because I saw his advice on diet was garbage and his exercise theories were being discussed by people, like Clarence bass, more than a decade ago.

    http://www.cbass.com/EvolutionaryFitness.htm

    Bass, who wrote an article about Art DeVany's Evolutionary Fitness in 2000, recently put up a review of Art's new book too.

    http://www.cbass.com/TheNewEvolutionDiet.htm

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  42. Also, you say "De Vany's choice to banish carbohydrates from the menus of his diabetic mother and son was likely the best choice he could have made." That should be WIFE and son.

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  43. Chris:
    For me, the credibility of your review was diminished when you started out with a quote pulled totally out of context…. “Fat is poison” - Art De Vany. I knew at that point the review was going to be negative and you lived up to my expectations. You obviously have an agenda which is contrary to the best interests of this book and De Vany’s message. Your use of the terms “carbophobia” and “Lipophobia” to describe De Vany’s views were particularly misleading and disingenuous.
    My rebuttal to you, rather than going point by point, focuses on whether or not De Vany’s ideas produce credible results. I personally know Art De Vany and play tennis with him on occasion. In addition to “talking the talk” in his book, in real life he “walks the walk” and has done so for the past 25 years. De Vany is 73 years old but displays the speed, flexibility, power and mental agility not normally associated with a 73 year old. In addition, his metabolic markers to include chloresterol, blood pressure, testosterone, ect are at levels associated with a much younger person.
    Dr. Art De Vany has a significant following around the world and his blog contains numerous testimonials from followers who have personally benefited from his teachings. No matter how much you try and discredit this book, his results speak louder than words.

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  44. Hi Chris,

    The word "canola" does not appear in "The New Evolution Diet," according to my search using the Amazon.com "Search Inside This Book" tool. The word "castor" appears three times: on pp. 44, 46 and 202 (the last is in the book's index).

    According to this Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castor_oil
    ...castor oil is more often (at least traditionally) used medicinally than as a regular food.

    Perhaps it's a typo? (Every published book has 'em, after all.) But what the correct version should have been, we can only speculate. (That is, we don't know, unless Dr. DeVany says so, that he meant to say "canola."

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  45. Dennis: "Dr. Art De Vany has a significant following around the world and his blog contains numerous testimonials from followers who have personally benefited from his teachings. No matter how much you try and discredit this book, his results speak louder than words."

    Having read his blog, many readers were vehemently opposed to some of his dogma against saturated fat, starches, and so forth. DeVany never bothered to respond to those criticisms, AFAIK, or consider discarding some of his ideas.

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  46. Melissa McEwen makes the same point and adds that women are more likely than men to have problems converting the carotenes in plant foods to vitamin A that could otherwise be obtained in its final form from animal foods. http://findmybud.com/

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  47. I was merely interested in the book inasmuch as it might have useful exercise advice. Is the book worth it for that content at all. maximum shred

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