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No matter what our diet philosophy is (there are many), studying various viewpoints can allow us to make better decisions to improve our health and wellness. Here’s a wonderful interview with Marion Nestle regarding her book, Why Calories Count: From Science to Politics. Her view point isn’t so much personal as it is a collection of data points. Fascinating.

Marion Nestle’s Interview on KQED

It’s about 50 minutes long but every second is worth listening to. Those who have read The Saloon for a while know that my simple approach to eating, and everything I’ve written about regarding diet, closely matches what Nestle has to say.

Hope everyone is well!

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15 Responses to Marion Nestle’s Interview: “Why Calories Count”

  1. Al says:

    Could be a dumb question but does it take practice to like veggies and fruit? I didn’t grow up eating wholesome food and was wondering if I could eventually love fruits and veggies with enough practice?

    The reason I ask is because two are two main common traits among lean people that I see on fitness sites big or small: they all strength train in some way and they all tend to eat real food. I am afraid that I am just going to have to face the fact that I have to eat real food to get the results I want. Thanks.

  2. GuyJeb says:

    That is a great interview. My ears were burning when she started talking about the 2nd law of thermodynamics, but then followed up that “where the calories come from are critically important.” I thought, *Right on!*.

  3. yannick says:

    Experiments with
    Intermittent Fasting Dr. John M. Berardi

    before value after value range

    Cholesterol 3.78 mmol/L 5.0m mmol/L <5.0

    LDL 2.24 mmol/L 2.98 mmol/L 1.04

    Triglycerides 0.86 mmol/L 0.95 mmol/L <1.69

    Hemoglobin 154 g/L 140 g/L 135-175

    WBC 4.3 x E9/L 3.1 x E9/L 4-11

    RBC 4.95 x E12/L 4.36 x E12/L 4.5-6.0

    Platelet Count 169 x E9/L 150 x E9/L 150-400

    Thyrotropin 1.62 mIU/L 1.21 mIU/L 0.35-5

    Testosterone 28.9 nmol/L 23.8 nmol/L 8.4 – 28.7

    This is the result of 6 months on various IF plans by Dr. John M. Berardi has you can see red blood cell, white blood cells, testosterone and thyroid hormone all went down.

    Don't get me wrong i had very good results doing IF myself but in the end i developed light anemia, unless there is a way to get around this i still see IF has a temporary solution to lose weight and cleanse the body and not a full time life diet.

    I would really love to hear the comments on this, you can download the full 80 page study by clicking on the link and the PDF is free. Dr. John M. Berardi did attain amazing results doing IF but there are pros and cons that cannot be overlooked. And i do not believe in eating 6 times per day either or consuming my meal in the form of supplements.

    • Johnny says:

      Hi yannick,

      Thanks for sharing. As you can see, these changes Dr. Berardi (whom I’ve respected and followed for almost a decade) experienced are *small*. And if you read his own comment, he’s not worried about these slight decreases (or, in some circumstances, slight increases) in these numerical gauges. He and Dr. Bryan Walsh also said these changes might be a reflection of physiologic efficiency, which might be associated with the theory that IF/calorie-restriction can extend lifespan.

      I continue to IF nearly daily, and have kept my body fat around 6%, while feeling consistently energetic, and, by all indication, very healthy.


  4. Audley says:

    I think one of the benefits of IF is finding what does work for you. Over the past year, through IF, I have lowered my bodyfat to a constant 9-11%. However now I eat when hungry and IF only if there is a need, maybe food splurges that has bloated me a bit (similar to Johnny’s cruise from a while ago). I also have readjusted my stomach’s sensory to how much I am eating and noticed getting fuller faster. My last bloodwork came back running about the same as the past, so this works for me.
    Here is an interesting article from the New York Times concerning a calorie is still a calorie.

    • Johnny says:

      Good article, Audley. I agree with most of what was mentioned. Also important is the comment that, certain diets are good for medical reasons while others are bad for medical reasons. A diet of mostly whole, real food is generally healthier than that of processed and refined sweets. But, damn it, I will still enjoy my tiramisu.


  5. jaysond says:

    Hey Johnny great article. I hope all is well. Good to see you’re keeping busy! My IF is still working great; I also remain around 6-7% all thanks to you my friend! Thank you!

    I’ve been offline for a while so this is an old reply, I want to comment on the calorie is a calorie comment above. I don’t want to come off as rude or argumentative but people please do not let stuff like that ruin your program and it could, I see it every day! YES in the end calories in vs. calories out is what weight loss and management boils down to. IF is a tool that you can use along side of your diet and fitness program and it works great but this a “calorie is a calorie” can be taken out of context just as much as it has context! I’ll simple say this……. no matter if I am lean or over weight if I eat some “Doritos” that consist of 150 calories vs. eat a Banana and an Apple that “also” totals 150 calories nobody in the world will ever convince me that the calories from the Doritos are going to affect my body the same way as the fruit and if you think that it would you’re going to have a rough diet program so good luck!

  6. Stephon says:


    It’s been a very long time since I’ve heard anything from you. How are you and your beautiful family? I hope all is well.

    I really miss this blog and it’s posts. Now there are soo many blogs promoting IF but they all still seem to promote a particular diet or particular foods with restrictions on others. One thing that your blog brought to the table was simplicity and didn’t seem to push any one diet. I would even go as far to say that in the beginning you seemed to be a strong proponent of a stricter Paleo style of eating but as the blog progressed was flexible on your views as far as variety.

    Just seems to make things worse for someone like me who’s attempting to overcome a unhealthy relationship with food already? I’ve dealt with a lot because of my restrictive style of eating just recently and have had family/friends even not invite me to certain functions because they say “We know you don’t eat certain foods”….. Right now there is an associate of mine whom is eating a very high carb/ low protein/, moderate fat diet as an experiment and is losing fat going from 215lbs to 176lbs since Feb 2012. He is basing it off calories in vs calories out and doesn’t practice IF?

    Sure I speak for many when I say that your posts are missed but I’m sure that with the addition of your wionderful daughter that quality time with your family trumps blogging anyday. Was hoping to get your thoughts on my posts, but understand that you are busy with life. Hope to hear from you soon…


  7. What happened to Johnny?

  8. Where is Johnny? What happened?

  9. Peter - VT says:

    Johnny’s posts are greatly missed but I just go back to the beginning and re-read and browse. It’s great to go back through…not much has changed but I do miss the posts as well. This blog has been a huge help to me. Here is a list of things that have hit home when going back through articles besides some obvious ones like move more eat less:

    1. Food hyper-flavoring –
    2. Personal trainers are useless-
    3. You can’t exercise your way out of eating too much –

    Interesting stuff and still relevant.

  10. Sondra Rose says:

    Too bad that Marion Nestle still thinks saturated fat is bad for you. I went over to her blog & saw that she supported the Danish “fat tax” on foods with over 2.3% saturated fat.

    Couldn’t finish listening to the radio show after that.

  11. Amelia says:

    Yes, we miss you Johnny! I am currently studying Nutritional Medicine and Naturopathy, and I feel IF is something even those who I study with are still getting their head around. But looking at this doco (worth a watch), I think we are going to see more of it in the future. I am particularly interested in the anti-aging benefit of it (disease processes). The last 10 mins are very interesting
    Thanks Johnny, you’re blog has been so influential in my beliefs and eating. I hope we hear more from you soon.

  12. Amazing things here. I am very glad to look your article. Thank
    you so much and I’m looking ahead to touch you. Will you please drop me a e-mail?

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