The chocolate diet
By Serge Kreutz
Version 1.1, Lucerne, 13. July 2010
My whole life, I have been concerned with dietary issues.
I had and have to. If I don't do that, I suffer from debilitating migraine every second day.
I have also had a phase in my life when I was some 40 kilos overweight. (I am only 10 kilo overweight now.)
I could write a diet book. But as of now, it's just some websites and articles.
But the view I postulate on nutrition is revolutionary. My opinions, and eating habits, are totally different from everything that has been practiced, written, and propagated so far.
We all know that there are three macro nutrients: carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. Normally, more than 90 percent of the food we eat belongs to these three categories, in various percentages.
Public opinion is that any of the three is bad for you, and the worst reputation has, of course, fat.
Eating only small quantities of each macro nutrient is best for a long life. The life-extending benefits of a calorie restriction diet is well established.
HOWEVER... a long life is not a quality in itself. Measured by the infinity we have not been alive before we were born, and measured by the infinity we will be dead after we have died, it does not matter whether we live long or short.
Furthermore, when considering that being dead is nothing, but that dying can be a terrible experience, we can deduce that being alive is no value in itself.
But we are not built to just commit suicide. And the only time we can feel that it's worthwhile to be alive is during orgasms.
There are limits to what extend I will forego the pleasures of food... and the pleasure of sex and orgasms.
A forced hunger diet is no good for sexual desire and sexual function. Not only are our thoughts, at times we are not nutritionally satiated, preoccupied with food. Food (enough of it) also is required in the metabolic, chemical processes related to sexual desires and sexual function.
Sexual desire and function are testosterone-dependent. Of course, one could just up-regulate testosterone with tongkat ali.
But in addition, testosterone levels respond to macro nutrients in the diet. Do a Google search (scholar.google.com) on what macro nutrient does the job. Suggested search term: testosterone diet
The score is: fat 1, protein 0, carbs 0
Next you may want to research which macro nutrient is the biggest burden for the digestive system.
The biggest burden is protein. All proteins contain nitrogen, and when proteins are used as fuel, many nitrogenous toxins are formed.
But in the case of protein as a macro nutrient, my opinion is shaped by observation of my own physiological and digestive processes, rather than by reading scientific literature.
I am very, very prone to migraine headaches. And the surest way to provoke them is eating cheese. And it has been suggested that the tyramine in aged protein food such as cheese is the trigger.
But by eliminating cheese alone, I cannot get rid of my migraines. I know other trigger food. Eggs for example, fresh eggs, from hens gathering their food running around a farm.
Or from eating chicken at KFC.
But I don't get migraine from eating quality milk chocolate. I can eat nothing else but milk chocolate for three days, up to a kilo a day. No migraine, also no sub-migraine. (But I can't guarantee this for every brand of dark chocolate.)
I have tried purely vegetarian diets, heavy on peanuts and broccoli, but I still get migraines.
I have finally found that the common denominator of all food causing me migraines, and sub-migraine headaches, or just a subtle condition of not feeling fresh.
The common denominator is protein overload. The digestion of protein and amino acids anyway produces more toxic by-products than then digestion of any other macro nutrient, all because of the nitrogen they contain. And tyramine, the old culprit and gang leader, of course is a nitrogen compound, too.
Of course, I, as everybody else need protein as a nutrient. But how much protein do I need? 30 to 40 gram a day, maybe. Anything more is detrimental to my well-being.
Mind you, anybody eating recognized quality food will have a hard time to not get beyond the 30 to 40 gram of protein per day.
And anybody of the hundreds of millions of people who suffer from migraines and lesser headaches, and who I suggest give protein-restriction a try, can happily go without animal protein and need not worry about not reaching the 30 to 40 grams a day.
Many vegetables, and even grains, are sufficient sources of protein, though one may want to avoid soy products (because they are estrogenic, and soy protein digestion results in particularly toxic by-products) as well as grains and legumes (both with many problematic proteins). Even then, there is no shortage of protein sources. The dry mass of broccoli is around 50 percent protein, and asparagus and spinach are good sources, too. And anybody of the hundreds of millions of people who suffer from migraines and lesser headaches, and who I suggest give protein-restriction a try, can happily go without animal protein and need not worry about not reaching the 30 to 40 grams a day (but they will still need animal fat if they want the benefits of high testosterone levels).
That much on proteins. How about carbs?
I don't think they are as problematic as proteins. I, and millions of others, don't suffer migraine attacks from eating carbs.
But while carbs may not be as heavy on the digestive system as proteins, they aren't as light as fats either.
Carbs enter the blood stream as sugar, regardless of whether they were ingested as "healthy" greens or "unhealthy" refined sweets, or tasteless starch.
Carbs and fats are more related to each other then either of the two is to protein. The liver converts fat into glucose fairly easily without toxic by-products.
However, there is an easily definable problem with carbohydrates, which is feeling hunger. If carbs are eaten and digested, they result in elevated blood sugar levels. The body has to answer this with releasing insulin.
But this biological response seems to lack fine-tuning. For after the over-sugar phase, there will next be a phase of under-sugar resulting in feeling hungry, regardless of whether the meal supplied enough calories for pending activities or not .
And then they eat. And then they are overweight.
Most people wrongly believe that dietary fats make them fat. Because after having eaten a meal with a sufficient amount of fat people can feel satiated for hours.
But if they just foolishly replace all fats with carbs, they will inevitably be hungry after a short while. And because being hungry is by and large a disturbing feeling, most people just eat.
Now, I am not propagating that nonsense of a low-carb diet. For curiosity, I have tried it. But while a meal of protein and fat may supply enough calories, it doesn't satisfy my carving for food. I have to eat some carbs to be happy and fit.
Conventional wisdom, which in this case, I support, suggests that about half of one's intake of food should be carbs.
Now what carbs?
Quality carbs. And they should have two, not just one quality. First they should be of good nutritional value, also supplying minerals and vitamins. Second, they should appeal to the taste buds.
Whether they are natural or processed isn't the issue, really. It's their biochemical composition that matters.
Grains are tasty, but the proteins that accompany the carbs are critical. The same is the case with many legumes.
On the other hand, while it's reputation is terrible, refined sugar really is just pure carbs. And I would give it preference over that other simple carb, which is starch.
Taste-wise, sugar beats starch hands-down.
And therefore, it does so also in one nutritional department that is often not considered: the psychological effect of food.
I consider chocolate the most psychologically nutritious food of all.
You can serve me a steak. I eat it.
Then I see a plate of chocolate. I desire it.
You think I am still hungry, so you serve me another steak. OK, I eat it.
But seeing the chocolate, I will still desire it.
This won't go away with eating yet another steak. I may feel very, very full, but the desire for the chocolate I see will still be there. I really have to force myself not to eat it.
But try it the other way around. Let me eat the chocolate first.
If now I decide that I want to diet and therefore reduce my calorie intake, I can happily go without the steak(s).
I will desire some non-sweet food eventually, but if I do want to lose weight, I can easily eat just chocolate all day, nothing else.
Anyway, nutritionally chocolate fares quite well. Milk chocolate has about 7 gram of protein per 100 gram, and 59 gram of carbs and 29 gram of fat, with about 4 gram of fiber.
As a meal composition, that sounds fairly good to most people, at least as long they don't know that this meal is just chocolate.
Sure, some necessary micro nutrients such as vitamin C are not supplied (easy to get anywhere, eat some fruit).
On the other hand, chocolate contains some other micro nutrients that otherwise are quite rare, such as phenolics.
So, go ahead, lose weight, eat chocolate.