This WSJ article is so completely typical of the current state of our health science, in both good and bad ways: When Everyday Foods are Hard to Digest.
First, the the article admits doctors don’t really know what causes a widespread condition, in this case IBS.
“As many as 20% of adults at some point suffer from a painful digestive disorder that is difficult to diagnose and has no cure.”
You would be astonished how many “diseases” and disorders there are where doctors have no clue what’s going on, but give an amorphous set of symptoms a technical sounding name. Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Depression.
Second, can we stop using the word “cure” so much? Cures makes people think that there’s some magic potion — i.e., an injection or prescription drug — that will make everything better. There aren’t magical “cures” for metabolic conditions. Metabolic conditions like IBS or obesity aren’t primarily caused by bacteria (infection) or a virus (polio), where the word cure seems more appropriate.
Third, the article points out that more scientists are realizing that diet may hold the answer. Wait — you mean that a problem in my digestive tract might have a connection to the food I’m eating? As they say in the Usual Suspects: What, do you got a team of monkeys working around the clock on this? That’s on par with the insight that the foods you eat just might be related to tooth decay.
Fourth, they come up with some meaningless scientific jargon and a stupid acronym.
“A long list of foodsâincluding dairy products, some fruits and vegetables, wheat, rye, corn syrup and artificial sweetenersâcan potentially create such problems in susceptible people. Collectively, they’re known as Fodmaps, an acronym that for stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols.”
Even if they were completely wrong in the science, it would sound like they were right because of the technical language. If they know how to spell ”oligosaccharides“, then they must know the effects of oligosaccharides on the body, right?
Fifth, there’s no evolutionary explanation. The food recommendations closely resemble paleo recommendations: grains and legumes are out, dairy is implicated, as well as certain industrial foods. And of course, there’s no mention of that — which isn’t really a big deal. To hell with “The Paleo Diet”. What really bugs me is that there is no evolutionary, big picture explanation for WHY people get incredible amounts of gas and bloating when they eat these foods. It’s just some mysterious property of a specific type of carbohydrate.
In the same vein, look at the title of the article.
When Everyday Foods are Hard to Digest
“Everyday” foods? There’s no historical perspective on the human diet — most of the so-called “everyday” foods that people have to remove on FODMAPS haven’t been everyday foods for very long. Vegetable oils, dairy, grains, legumes (like soy).
The tragedy of this article is that it actually makes sense why we aren’t well-adapted to eating those foods. But instead of helping people develop a better understanding of there own lives, this article makes people more confused and dependent on nutrition experts.
AND WHAT DOES FUCKING FODMAPS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT ANY OTHER PART OF YOUR HEALTH?
How does FODMAPS help you workout better?
How does FODMAPS help you feed a newborn?
How does FODMAPS help you get healthy sun?
How does FODMAPS help you lead a more meaningful existence?
Answer: it doesn’t.
A long list of foodsâincluding dairy products, some fruits and vegetables, wheat, rye, corn syrup and artificial sweetenersâcan potentially create such problems in susceptible people. Collectively, they’re known as Fodmaps, an acronym that for stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols. ANDF