Recently, I read an article about how food seems to be replacing religion in our lives, and the themes from the article continue to resonate in my brain. I tried to find the original article to share with you, but to no avail (if you stumble across a similar one, please post in the comments). Among other things, the author talked about how a sense of virtue now comes from food rather than from religion. In addition to becoming a surrogate religion, sometimes it seems that food is becoming a surrogate for many other aspects of our community and culture as well.
We’ve all seen the power of food in discussions online. A mom who posts on Instagram about the homemade chicken nuggets that her child is eating (from chickens raised in the backyard and then gluten-free breaded with flour from organic almonds and served on an approved-material plate so as to not expose the child to chemicals) is instantly praised for her “goodness.” A mom who posts a picture of her child eating chicken nuggets from a fast food restaurant will label it as “I’m a bad mom” and then others reply along the lines of “we all have those days” or “now your child will get autism.” Why is this? Where did food get this power? I’m glad to have the Word of Wisdom as the foundation of my thoughts around food, and I continue to look for new sound advice to augment that inspired instruction.
In my search for guidance on food, I stumbled upon a fabulous study completed by Ali Marie Pohlmeier at Texas Tech University. Food sparks a particular dilemma for women with PCOS. If you google “PCOS diet” or something along those lines, you’ll get a plethora of conflicting advice. There seems to be agreement that we need less carbohydrates, but beyond that there is little in the way of actual science-based advice for women with PCOS. I was so glad to see Ms. Pohlmeier’s work! It shows that someone with actual credentials spent time and effort to study the effect of food on women with PCOS, and then published her results for all of us to read! Do take the time to read these links. Maybe just the news article now, and then the entire dissertation later tonight.
News Article from the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Researchers Look in to Effects of Diet on Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Patients
Dissertation of Ali Marie Pohlmeier: Effect of a Low Insulinemic Diet on Clinical, Biochemical and Metabolic Outcomes in Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
You really do need to go read the dissertation directly, as I do not want to detract from her work with my own attempt to summarize. However, to get you interested, the study presented by Ms. Pohlmeier asked participants to follow a specific diet but NOT to increase exericise, count carbs, or count calories. Simply making changes to the food intake of women with PCOS showed very promising improvements in weight loss, insulin sensitivity, A1c (a measure of blood sugar) and blood lipids (cholesterol). The diet the participants followed consisted of unlimited lean meats, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and oils, as well as a small amount of cheese and red wine. All grains and grain products, beans, potatoes, sugar, honey, and milk were avoided.
Go read the article and then come back and let me know what you think. Can we do this? Part of me wants to conduct my own study of n=1 and see how it goes…