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Fiber Menace: The Truth About the Leading Role of Fiber in Diet Failure, Constipation, Hemorrhoids, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn's Disease, and Colon CancerPaperback– October 15, 2008
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My training as a physician included many hours of nutrition, but fiber was only mentioned in regards to the effects of a deficiency. Never once did any of my professors consider the possibility that too much of what has always been considered a good thing' could have such harmful or far-reaching consequences. The author's detailed description of the trauma imposed to the gastrointestinal mucosa by the expanding fiber is a vivid reminder that returning to the basics of GI function and logically thinking through what our bodies actually are designed to do with the food we eat, should be the first step on anyone's journey to recovery from digestive disorders. Thanks to the insights in this book I have slowly begun to change my approach to common patient symptoms, which I traditionally would have treated by suggesting increased fiber and more water to correct! So far the results are promising. Dr. John Turner, DC, CCSP, DIBCN --Wise Traditions Newsletter by Weston A. Price foundation
It seems we barely know what is really good for our bodies. Until dramatic progress in molecular biology are made, we are in the dark and can only experiment. I believe entire walls of concepts will collapse as we gain knowledge.
The fiber myth might well be one of them. As the author says, some population like Inuits live with extremely low levels of fibers, and to my knowledge, they are not reputed to be the most constipated / unhealthy people on the planet. Anyway, the principles in this book have changed my life and there is not a single day that I don't benefit from what I learned.
My story is a long one so I will try to make it short, although I could write a book about it (and thinking of creating a website).
I have a tendency to constipation. Since I was a kid. Since no medical condition could justify it (I exercise, drink water, got a colonoscopy, feces analysis, blood analysis, rectal examination....) I was told to increase fibers ingestion by certified doctors here in france.
So I tried to load myself with brans. Did it for years. Retrospectively, I well see it didn't help AT ALL. Like 10 years ago I bought a new brands of cereals, rich in fibers, with dried fruits. Tasted so good I ate a lot of it. This lead to a fecalom, which is an obstruction of the colon by huge amount of feces. Constipation is NOT a problem of quantity of stool. It's not because you don't produce enough feces that you don't have your bowels movements. So fiber megadosage is totally useless and in my case resulted in accumulation in a fecalome that I had to remove with my finger, millimeter by millimeter, which took 36 hours.Read more ›
I had to order this book via Amazon USA because it is not available in Europe. His basic recommendations, not do eat too much fiber and not to overdose water intake, seem to make sense. His hints how to fight obstipation caused by low-carb/low-fiber-diets are also as reasonable as the recommendation to make the transition vom a high-fiber/carb-diet to a low-fiber/carb one slowly to prevent negative side effects of the carbohydrate withdrawal.
But there are also some serious flaws. First is his completely wrong reception of the cause of Atkins' death. As we know, Atkins died from an accident with severe damage of his skull and brain. At the time of this accident he was not obese at all and did not suffer from heart disease. But Monastyrsky states Atkins died from a cardiac arrest, "unquestionably from obesity-related complications [...] and he died morbidly obese". Monastyrsky also seems not to have really understood the principles behind ketosis. I certainly do NOT endorse the Atkins-Diet nor his very problemable "induction phase", but I really dislike lay-journalists/writers who investigate inaccurately or do not fully understand what they are writing about.
Secondly Mr. Monastyrskys calculations about the daily need of carbohydrates (200 g/day is way to high) and the maximum intake of carbohydrates, fats and proteins to allow fat loss are quite weird. He claims that only with NO carbohydrate and max. 1 gram of fats and proteins per kg bodyweight, weightloss would be possible. Following this idea, a person of 75 kg would be allowed to have NO carbohydrates, 75 g fats and 75 g protein per day.Read more ›
Fiber Menace By Konstantin Monastrsky (Pub. by Ageless Press, 2005)
From a symbolic cover illustrating a cereal bowl full of gold screws, the insightful book, Fiber Menace, reveals the disastrous effects that our modern high-fiber nutritional dictates may have on the proper functioning of the digestive system. From purely a perspective of the problems that a high-fiber diet creates--of large stools that stretch the intestinal tract beyond its normal range and eventually cause intestinal damage and bowel problems, including hernias, hemorrhoidal disease, constipation, malnourishment, irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's disease, to drastically upsetting the natural bacterial flora in the intestinal tract--Fiber Menace describes major health issues that can develop from eating what's considered a modern healthy diet that is high in fiber from fiber supplements, grains, vegetables, fruits and legumes.
The book also details the problems with over-hydration. The recommended 8 glasses of water a day may cause problems such as constipation, mineral depletion and imbalances, which can factor in digestive disorders, kidney disease, degenerative bone disease, muscular disorders and even cardiac arrest from electrical dysfunction. Pointing to traditional healthy cultures, we find that people did not drink large quantities of water because a clean water source was not guaranteed. Instead, they stayed hydrated with dairy, fermented beverages and bone broth soups, which have incredible nutrient qualities and are not flushed through the body as plain water.
The author of this book is a brilliant man who suffered a life-threatening illness from years as a vegetarian. Mr.Read more ›
Mr. Monastyrsky graduated from medical university in 1977 with a pharmacy degree. Shortly thereafter his family emigrated to the United States from the Ukraine (the former Soviet Union), where he decided to pursue a career in the high-technology field, and taught himself advanced programming languages.
From 1985 to 1990, he worked at two premier Wall Street firms: at First Boston/Credit Suisse as a senior systems analyst and at Goldman-Sachs & Co. as a technology consultant to Dr. Fischer Black, the co-author of the Nobel Prize-winning Black-Scholes theory of options trading.
In May of 1990, Mr. Monastyrsky was invited to participate along with Mr. Bill Gates in the filmed introduction of Microsoft Windows 3.0, which forever revolutionized personal computing. He was the only programmer in the United States to earn this honor because of his substantial contribution to the development of graphical user interface and Windows programming techniques.
Between 1990 and 1998, he was the president of Okna Corporation, a software development company. In 1996, Mr. Monastyrsky began to suffer from diabetes and a host of related ailments, including the debilitating carpal tunnel syndrome. Unable to use the keyboard, he turned his attention back to medicine to find solutions for his rapidly deteriorating health.
He applied the same analytical rigor to the study of his health condition as he had to technology, and within several years had completely recovered from diabetes. In 1998, free from the ravages of carpal tunnel syndrome, he left the technology field to pursue a career in nutritional research, medical writing, performance and longevity counseling, and health advocacy.
Through his extensive investigations and research, Mr. Monastyrsky pioneered the fields of forensic nutrition and nutritional intervention--both terms that he coined. His unorthodox thinking, penetrating analysis, and extensive and accessible writings are ushering in a new era and approach to nutrition and healthcare in the United States.