This NYT article by science journalist Gary Taubes is fascinating. If you’ve ever tried to be thinner and failed at that, maybe it’s because the advice you followed was based on a big fat lie.

If the members of the American medical establishment were to have a collective find-yourself-standing-naked-in-Times-Square-type nightmare, this might be it. They spend 30 years ridiculing Robert Atkins, author of the phenomenally-best-selling Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution and Dr. Atkins’ New Diet Revolution, accusing the Manhattan doctor of quackery and fraud, only to discover that the unrepentant Atkins was right all along. Or maybe it’s this: they find that their very own dietary recommendations — eat less fat and more carbohydrates — are the cause of the rampaging epidemic of obesity in America. Or, just possibly this: they find out both of the above are true. [continue]

Edited to add:

Anyone interested in this topic would do well to read the following two books, also by Gary Taubes:

These are well-researched and provide much to ponder.

Related articles:

  • Inside the Story from mit.edu — Martha Henry, program coordinator for the Knight Fellowships, interviews Gary Taubes about his controversial article.
  • Interview: Gary Taubes from pbs.org — In this interview, Taubes explains his motivation for writing his piece, the science behind the low-carbohydrate diet, and the contention he faced when he published his findings.