In the fascinating video and slideshow linked below, author Gary Taubes probes a paradox in conventional medical thinking.
Standard medicine states that obesity is a disease of prosperity -- more wealth means more calories and less work to get them, leading to the current obesity epidemic. But why, then, are the poorest and most malnourished populations the most likely to be obese?
Taubes offers an alternative explanation -- people don’t get fat because they overeat; they overeat because their fat tissue is accumulating excess fat. And why does fat tissue do this?
Because dietary carbohydrates, especially fructose, are the primary source of a substance called glycerol-3-phosphate, which causes fat to become fixed in fat tissue. At the same time, this diet raises insulin levels, which prevents fat from being released.
This leads to a simple equation: dietary carbohydrates such as high fructose corn syrup lead to obesity, even if you are actually malnourished.