Gary Taubes of The Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI) challenges the conventional wisdom about the causes of obesity. Most researchers argue that obesity is the result of a combination of too much food and too little physical activity, and subscribe to the calorie-in, calorie-out paradigm. Taubes argues that this paradigm fails to explain observed facts, such as the simultaneous existence of underweight children and overweight adults in poor countries. Instead, Taubes argues that what are primarily responsible for making people fat are foods that elevate insulin. According to Taubes, obesity is a hormonal/regulatory disorder, or a disorder of insulin signaling. He rejects the conventional food pyramid as nutritional guidance and policy and recommends instead that people seeking to lose weight avoid refined grains, starches, and sugars.

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