Mail 3 - My rebuttal
Dear Mr. X,
Thank you for your reply. I will address your responses point by point. Firstly let us look at “world famous cardiologist” Dr. Al Sears.
You resort to appeal to authority regarding Dr. Al Sears, it is not a valid debating tactic. Regardless let us examine the credibility of Dr. Al Sears. In his website, Dr. Al Sears advocates the use of magnesium supplements and vitamin pills to control blood pressure instead of beta blockers. This leaves him with no credibility. But perhaps the Florida Department of health and licensing board of physicians will convince you – “AUTHORITY VOID - the licensing board or department voided practitioner's license. Practitioner can not practice in the state of Florida and is not obligated to update his/her profile data." (Reference – hereand here).
So the world famous cardiologist quoted by you isn’t even licensed to practice medicine.
Also Dr. Sears claims that he is board certified by American Academy of Anti-Ageing Medicine. Sounds well and good, yeah? Except that it is not recognized by either the American Medical Association or the American Board of Medical Specialties (the actual organization that issues certificates of specialization) (Reference – here). You do realize what touting an unrecognized certificate means, don’t you?
Now let me resort to some appeal to authority. Quoting from the Updated Recommendation for Adults from the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association – “Primary Recommendation: To promote and maintain health, all healthy adults aged 18 to 65 yr need moderate-intensity aerobic (endurance) physical activity for a minimum of 30 min on five days each week or vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity for a minimum of 20 min on three days each week.” Notice how much they stress on aerobic exercise? Surely American Heart Association trumps the personal opinion of someone who is not licensed to practice medicine, does it not?
"The longer we indulge in aerobic activities, such as typically described earlier, the more we secrete a nasty little group of hormones called glucocorticoids, with the stress hormone cortisol, chief amongst them. One of the lesser known qualities of cortisol is that it is catabolic in nature, meaning that it breaks down muscle tissue along with fat in order to metabolise this stored energy for immediate fuel. Why is this bad? IT IS MUSCLE THAT GIVES US SHAPE AND DEFINITION AND MORE IMPORTANTLY FROM A FUNCTIONAL POINT OF VIEW GIVES US BALANCE.If we lose muscle faster than we lose fat,then we are proportionately fatter even if the scales tell us that we are several kgs lighter. In a society that places a higher priority on what we weigh, and the medical community is no saint in this regard,this is a difficult concept to grasp but nevertheless true."
I don’t think you are qualified in any way to discuss glucocorticoids, as is evident from your profoundly ignorant comment about glucocorticoids and adrenal gland from your article. You wrote – “Cortisol leads to adrenal fatigue, yo-yo-like fluctuations in blood sugar and completely throws your digestive system off gear.” For your information, there is no such thing called adrenal fatigue. The Hormone Foundation of the Endocrine Society has clearly stated so. “Adrenal fatigue is not a real medical condition.There are no scientific facts to support the theory that long-term mental, emotional, or physical stress drains the adrenal glands and causes many common symptoms.” This has been endorsed by 14000 endocrinologists. So when your basic understanding of endocrinology is such shockingly flawed that you can promote a false disease on a newspaper, forgive me if I don’t buy into your arguments on glucocorticoids. For what it’s worth, glucocorticoids are absolutely lifesaving in several conditions.
"This brings us back to the " chunky aerobics instructor" with her 22-24% body fat. From a clinical point of view,admittedly, 22-25% fat is not alarming as your quoted report suggests. We are merely saying that for a conditioned athlete or trainer these are not acceptable figures. We are also quoting these figures when comparing them with sprinters who definitely clock less training time yet have much less body fat."
21-24% body fat is at fitness level, not just acceptable. They are way better than acceptable. What will a normal person gain by being compared to sprinters when their body fat composition is absolutely fine? The sprinters form an outlier group that’s why we don’t compare normal persons with sprinters.
"Core fact in conditioning- More is definitely not best when it comes to time spent under physical stress. The key word is intensity!"
Evidence please, I can just as well say more is definitely best. It’s meaningless unless you provide evidence (a scholarly article, not anecdotes as that’s what evidence means).
"A little more science: To understand one more reason why aerobics is not my favourite fat burn method , we need to consider a substance called myoglobin. Myoglobin is a large protein that binds to oxygen inside your muscle cells. It is repeatedly used and reloaded during the work and recovery phases of interval type anaerobic type training. However, as the duration of the work periods increase ( as in the case of long,slow aerobic conditioning),myoglobin stores are reduced. Myoglobin holds enough oxygen to last for 5 to 15 seconds. Intervals which last beyond this point at which myoglobin loses its supply of oxygen rely more on carbohydrate as a source of energy. this explain why short, hard intervals promote greater rise in fat burning.While you rest after achieving momentary failure, the myoglobin gets a chance to 're-load' again."
Again, evidence please, not just assertions.
The evidence at hand suggests that aerobic exercise is better than anaerobic exercise. Let me state the conclusions from a study comparing aerobic and anaerobic exercise – “We conclude that training above the anaerobic threshold has no or even negative effects on blood lipoprotein profiles. Therefore, beneficial adaptations in lipoprotein profile must be achieved with moderate training intensities below the anaerobic threshold.” (Effects of aerobic and anaerobic training on plasma lipoproteins. International Journal of Sports Medicine [1993, 14(7):396-400])
Compare that to the beneficial effect of aerobic exercise. “Regular aerobic exercise modestly increases HDL-C level. There appears to exist a minimum exercise volume for a significant increase in HDL-C level. Exercise duration per session was the most important element of an exercise prescription. Exercise was more effective in subjects with initially high total cholesterol levels or low body mass index.” (Effect of Aerobic Exercise Training on Serum Levels of High-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol: A Meta-analysis. Arch Intern Med. 2007;167(10):999-1008.)
Lipoproteins are markers of cardiovascular risk. Negative effects on lipoprotein profile means it increases the risk of a cardiovascular event like heart attack, stroke, sudden cardiac death etc. HDL-C is good cholesterol, that is, increase in HDL-C reduces the risks of cardiovascular outcomes. Hence anaerobic exercise increases the risk of cardiovascular events instead of decreasing it.
The evidence suggests quite the opposite of what you are saying.
Mr. X, you have demonstrated profound ignorance by touting “Adrenal Fatigue” – a condition that is considered to be nonsense by the medical community all over the world. Furthermore, in your rebuttal you quote someone as world famous cardiologist who is not even licensed to practice medicine. I think this amply demonstrates the depth of your knowledge and leaves you with zero credibility. I suggest that before publishing any thing related to health or disease you get it verified by a qualified medical practitioner. Though we all like to hate doctors, you have to concede that they are far more knowledgeable about health and disease.