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Barbara Berkeley
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by Barbara Berkeley, MD You may be interested in a study that was published by JAMA Network last month and drew some positive conclusions about Intermittent Fasting. Intermittent Fasting remains a topic of interest for those who want to lose weight and for those who treat those people. There are a few important questions. First: does it work? Second: Is it healthy? Third: Is it sustainable as a long term intervention? The JAMA article, which you can read HERE, is... Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2022 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD I was struck today by an opinion piece by Dr. Yoni Freedhoff on Medscape, an educational physician website. Dr. Freedhoff, a thoughtful commentator on the diet and obesity scene, contends that the stridency of the Low Carb Community is turning people off. Many Low Carb advocates have gone over the top, he says. They are unable to see any other viewpoint. In fact, they often appear to arrogantly assert that there is no other viewpoint. Perhaps... Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2019 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Greetings from the land of semi-retirement. It has been just over a year since I left my primary practice--fully intending to continue patient care in another setting. But fate intervened in the form of a local dance contest and shifted my focus to pursuit of a lifelong dream of becoming a dancer. If not now...when??? Since that fateful moment, I have trained endless hours and have competed in three world salsa competitions (not very successfully!). I... Continue reading
Posted Jul 17, 2019 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD This post is not for everyone. It is for those of you who are fully capable of exercising or of regaining your ability exercise strenuously. If you fit this description or think you might, read on. There is as much confusing information about how much to exercise as there is about how many grams of sugar, fat and protein one should consume every day. Let me make it simple: where exercise is concerned there is just... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2019 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Hello again to you dear readers and hello as well to those who are new to this blog. I've been on a sabbatical for the past year and now I'm finding that I want to write I'm back. Despite my silence on these pages, I have still been reading and observing. There is not much new in the weight loss world: no magic pills, no easy solutions. Weight gain and weight regain remain vexing problems... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2019 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD It has been a long time since I blogged here. I hope you are still out there working on staying healthy and finding your own way to reach your goals. I know how frustrating it can be and I know you sometimes wonder if it's all worth it. Let me assure you that it is. Things in my life have changed. In November, I became a grandmother for the first time and in December I decided... Continue reading
Posted Jun 24, 2018 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD I occasionally receive questions by email or through this blog. Recently, reader Dalon Clance submitted the following in response to the blog called "The Magic Pill": "I want to ask one thing. You state to eat a low carb diet for weight maintenance? I have also read the studies of Professor Hill from the University of Colorado and co-founder of the NWCR. He states that most of the people on the registry eat a low fat... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2018 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Imagine I had a magic pill. And imagine I told every overweight person in America that this pill could keep each one of them at the lowest weight he or she could achieve. All each had to do was diet down to that low weight and this wondrous little pill would prevent regain forever. I believe that if I could promise such a pill, pretty much every overweight person would be able to achieve a very... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
Moving and socializing appears to perk up the aging brain. So for the new study, which was published this month in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, researchers from the University of Illinois in Urbana and other schools decided to look at the effects of several different types of exercise on the wiring and the function of older people’s brains. They began by recruiting 174 healthy people in their 60s and 70s with no signs of cognitive impairment. Most were sedentary, although... Continue reading
Reblogged Apr 5, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD (Originally posted on RTR as "Simple Life, Simple Body", 2015) I was intrigued by David Brooks’ column in the New York Times recently. It speaks to a renewed interest in an old idea: simplifying life. Living in a less complicated way is not a new concept (think Walden Pond), but it has gained a greater magnetism in the setting of the hugely complex and acquisitive world in which we now find ourselves. I personally have enjoyed... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
Consider a quarterback’s passing game: throw the ball too soon and his receiver isn’t in place; throw the ball too late and he risks getting sacked. Either way, he isn’t in sync with his team to move the ball up field. A similar scenario may occur when eating and sleeping habits are out of sync with the body’s circadian clock, leading to metabolic disturbances. Over the past 20 years, scientists have assembled a clearer picture of the circadian clocks that... Continue reading
Reblogged Mar 17, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD It's in the headlines. It's on your mind. It's health care. As of December, 2016 the United States was spending 17.8% of its gross domestic product on health care. That's 3.2 trillion dollars or about $9,990 per person each year. The imbroglio over Obamacare is the direct consequence of our enormous health care problem. Proper coverage is too expensive for many of us and beyond any reach for truly sick people unless there is a contribution... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD The short answer: it depends. Do you want to lose the extra weight that is bothering you? Do you want to get rid of, or greatly reduce, the medicines you take for blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol? Do you want to finally keep the weight off without having to deal with soul-crushing bouts of regain? If so, an understanding of how your body reacts to carbohydrate is essential. Let's begin here: Weight warriors, I love you.... Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley As you know, I generally prefer to write about issues of weight maintenance. But it would be foolish to ignore the fact that on January 1st, most Americans thoughts turn to dieting. It's well known that our country's top New Year's resolution is weight loss. Diet programs, gyms, personal trainers, and fitness equipment companies all bank on it. But they also know that the boom is short lived. The vast majority of those who toast the New... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2017 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Holiday parties getting you down by boosting your weight? Here are some tips for negotiating those difficult moments. 1.Make it a Game! Serious weight maintainers are planners, so figure out the challenges of each party beforehand. Then set definite strategies and endpoints for yourself and give yourself a score afterwards. Make it fun! Got a low score last night? There's always tomorrow. Here are some things you can try working on: Specific amounts and types of... Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD You're up against it now. The period that begins just before Thanksgiving and ends on January 1st is without doubt the most challenging part of a maintainer's year. Here are some thoughts and guidelines I've found to be successful. First, and most importantly, make it your priority to "maintain, not gain". Hopefully, you are already staying at stable weight by following successful and consistently applied maintenance rules. If so, these most likely include eating a diet... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD The huge ship that moved weightily and inevitably toward low fat eating and calorie counting has finally started to change course. This week, the Harvard Health Blog published an article titled, "There's no sugar-coating it: All calories are not created equal." As readers of Refuse to Regain, you already know that calories are simply one attribute of food....and not the most important one. Despite this, we have come to rely on calories as the sum total... Continue reading
Posted Nov 5, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
An "aha moment" finally makes it to the front page of the NY Times Sunday Review. Just kidding. We've been talking about this in my practice for 30 years. Giving up most carbs (except fruits and vegetables) works!!! For weight loss. For diabetes. Why is it such a radical idea? It's not! It just seems that way for two reasons: 1. we are all EUI ("Eating Under the Influence". Carbs are addictive and we'll do anything not to give them... Continue reading
Reblogged Sep 11, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Because of my interest in the potentially toxic effects of too much sugar on the body, I became fascinated with the work of one Otto Warburg back in 2010. At that time, I published this blog about him. Warburg believed that cancer cells were unable to live by normal cellular processes and that they relied on sugar...and large amounts of it---to live. The thought was that cancer cells might be able to be starved to death... Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD Weight maintenance is in the news. Finally. Not to say I told you so, but this blog has been talking about the vital importance of studying and learning about successful weight maintenance since 2008. When I wrote Refuse to Regain that year, there was only one other book on the shelves that was focused on how to avoid regain after weight loss. Nothing much has changed. You still can't find any books on the subject. Although... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD I spend a lot of time thinking about techniques that might help people maintain weight. Of course, I don't see what my patients do when they leave the office. In the occasional instance that I wind up at a dinner or event with someone I've treated, that person is always on his/her best behavior. It's one of the two major burdens of being a weight loss doc: 1. Everyone asks you about diet all the time... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD We physicians live in the shadow of rising health care costs. Hospitals want us to cut length of stays and somehow become more efficient. Insurance companies ask us to accept less money for patient visits, forcing us to see more people in fewer hours. The government wants us to check a slew of electronic boxes to prove that we’ve performed what they deem to be “best practices”…. even though there is little evidence that any of... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD This is a bad week for me. I'm on a rant. In fact I feel (for those of you who are old enough to remember) like Howard Beale, the news anchor from the movie "Network", who went crazy and started screaming, "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!!" OK, maybe I'm exaggerating. But just a little. This week brought a double whammy. First, the USDA released its new eating guidelines. Why... Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2016 at Refuse To Regain
Your Resolution to Lose Weight This Year - YouTube In the best of all possible worlds we would all be maintaining successful weight losses. In the real world though a great many of us are making the traditional New Year's resolution: to finally lose weight this year. If you are one of these people, or you know one, learn to start with the basics. Click the link above for some starter suggestions. Continue reading
Reblogged Dec 31, 2015 at Refuse To Regain
by Barbara Berkeley, MD At the end of the year I like to look back at what has changed in my field and how I have changed in my practice and beliefs. Has new information about weight and weight loss come to the fore? Am I using different techniques than I used to? And most importantly, what have I learned from my patients this year? My interactions with patients are always the most powerful teachers. This fact reflects what is... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2015 at Refuse To Regain