Working with our system means running downhill and is so much easier.
Amylin and insulin are produced, stored, and released together in response to feeding. This raises the question: Why do diabetics take insulin without amylin? Go figure.
In the absence of sufficient amylin activity, the stomach contents empty too quickly, blood sugar rises too quickly, too much insulin is secreted, and blood sugar falls too quickly, making us hungry, even after overeating. Our system is thus vitally dependent on the stomach contents’ NOT emptying TOO quickly.
Whatever all natural things we can do to slow down an otherwise overly rapid gastric emptying aids and abets our system. It improves pre-digestion by allowing food more time in the stomach, which in turn aids further digestion in the duodenum. The better the overall digestion the more nutrients that are available to power all of the body’s systems.
The same agents that promote slower gastric emptying also increase – directly (when they cross the BBB – e.g. amidated agents) or indirectly- feelings of fullness. If we eat slowly, savor every bite, stop before we are full, and let these hormones do the work, we will feel full sooner, the feeling will last longer, and thus we will eat less and weigh less.
One can do all of this with low fat dieting – but it is running uphill, fighting our systems, as our “feeling full” hormones are looking for meals with sufficient fat and protein.
With sufficient amylin activity, gastric emptying is slowed, and the blood sugar spikes and plunges are circumvented. When the body’s insulin activity is reduced (via “insulin resistance” of pre-diabetes or type II diabetes), the beta pancreas cells’ production of amylin and insulin cannot keep up with demand, a less soluble precursor of amylin protein accumulates, and triggers the formation of insoluble protein aggregates called “amyloid proteins.” As beta pancreas cells die from complications of this and certain other difficulties, the ability of the pancreas to meet future demands for insulin and amylin decreases, and the situation becomes worse.
Amylin is aided and abetted by three additional hormones that are secreted in response to the “chyme” coming from the gastric emptying. These are CCK, secretin, and GIP. All four hormones are stimulated by the presence of fat in the food. It is obvious that nature is expecting fat to be in any satisfying meal. CCK gets a secondary stimulation from protein in the food. GIP gets a secondary stimulation from glucose. Thus, a meal with sufficient fat, carbohydrate, and protein aids and abets proper digestion by regulating proper gastric emptying. In the absence of sufficient fat and protein (translation: TOO MUCH CARBO), the stomach empties too fast for the rest of the body to keep up. In my experience, this includes so-called “good” (low glycemic, low insulinemic) carbohydrates.
To run downhill, to aid and abet what the body is trying to do, be sure the meal contains:
- Sufficient fiber + a glass of water -> bulk (this is the main gastric emptying delay strategy in vegetarian meals, but its power is fully harnessed by square meals)
- Sufficient fat
- Sufficient protein
- Sufficient carbohydrate
- Sufficient solid food
All of these ingredients are found in Square Meals, each of which contains 30 grams of fiber, no un-natural limitations of fat (no skimmed milk or egg white, e.g.) or carbohydrate, and 50 grams of protein. The only Square Meal recipe not featuring solid food is the Smoothie.
Can extra potency be achieved by consuming the Square Meal components in a certain order? Perhaps. Many Square Meals are thick purées and this issue is thus moot. For those with separate solid foods, one can best experiment on oneself to see what works best.
Try solid vs purée vs liquid food. Try varying the order of these critical components in solid food:
- High fiber plus a small amount of water
- High protein/fat components
- High carbohydrate components
I would be amazed if (3) before (1) or (2) worked well.
I would be amazed if (1) or (2) or preferably (1) and (2) before (3) worked poorly.
I would be amazed if solid food is not better than purée, which is not better than liquid at slowing gastic emptying.
In the Square Meal Diet there are purées because they are easier to digest and should provide better overall nutrition. Second, as a research tool, purées are excellent because any food not eaten is easily quantified for correcting nutritional input. However, the use of faster-stomach-emptying purées in place of solid food in Square Meal Dieting may indeed work against the desire for reduced calories.
For better overall weight loss, solid food should work better. For better overall nutrition, purées and liquids should work better. Such is the complexity of real life dieting and nutrition. There is no “one size fits all.”