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What experts say about Metabolism B Diet

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Diane Kress, R.D., C.D.E. and author of the new book "The Metabolism Miracle: 3 Easy Steps to Regain Control of Your Weight ... Permanently" offers unsuccessful dieters a highly appealing explanation for failed weight loss attempts. Kress believes that the weight-loss programs themselves are to blame, claiming that diets don't work for 45 percent of dieters because they have a different kind of metabolism, which she calls "Metabolism B."

According to Kress, unlike those with "Metabolism A," calorie restriction doesn't help those with type B. Instead, she posits that people with "Metabolism B" havemetabolic syndrome -- a cluster of symptoms including high blood pressure,cholesterol, trigylcerides and blood sugar and fat that collects around the waist. These people, she says, can eat all the calories they want, but need to watch their carbs -- both how many they eat and when they eat them. "Metabolism A" and "B" are not actual accepted medical terms, but we were intrigued by Kress’s argument and decided to dig deeper. See what she -- and other metabolism experts -- have to say about "Metabolism B" and meet some dieters who followed her advice and have reported losing weight. 

"Metabolism B" and Metabolic Syndrome -- a Connection?

While metabolic syndrome has been a known health issue for 25 years, the cause -- a hormonal imbalance that leads to excess insulin production -- was only recently discovered, Kress notes. "Insulin is a fat-gain hormone, so it stands to reason that if your body is making more insulin than it should, you're going to have more fat on your body than you should and you're going to have more fat in your blood vessels, higher cholesterol, higher triglycerides and your blood pressure's going to go up," says Kress.

Thus the two-part "Miracle Metabolism" diet -- an initial eight-week low-carb program to ease the stress on the pancreas -- the organ that makes insulin -- and step two, which introduces what she calls "low-impact carbs" -- things like whole-wheat pasta, multigrain breads and fiber-filled fruits and vegetables, which she says must be regulated throughout the day to keep your pancreas from being overloaded with insulin.

What Experts Have to Say About "Metabolism B"

Kress may be taking liberties with some of the exact science, says Stuart Weiss,M.D. and assistant clinical professor at New York University School of Medicine, but he thinks that her plan has the potential to help dieters. "We do know that people who are at risk for metabolic syndrome do respond to a low-carb diet, with improvements in their metabolic parameters." And while he notes that pancreatic rest has not produced enough solid real-world results in the laboratory, "clinically it seems like it should work."

"She's right about two things. Certain carbs are more prone to push out more insulin," leading to fat build-up, says Ray Samoa, M.D. and endocrinologist at City of Hope hospital. Another potential benefit of following this diet is that, "If you lower blood sugar by eating more complex carbs, you won't get as much toxicity from higher carbs." He cautions that while this "makes sense with somebody withdiabetes or pre-diabetes, the glycemic index is something that is not well established so it needs a lot of investigation. But anything that increases fiberseems to be a benefit for someone with metabolic disorder


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