Excerpts from Wolfgang Lutz's book "Dismantling a Myth":
2) Chapter VII: Gastrointestinal Tract (with figures)
3) About the author
(Excerpt 1: The first pages of the book, page 2-16)
The Role of Fat and Carbohydrates in our Diet
by Dr. Med. Wolfgang Lutz
© 1986 by Selecta-Verlag
Dr. Ildar Idris GmbH & Co. KG Planegg near Munich, West Germany.
Original title "Leben ohne Brot", translated by Beatrice Idris-Duncan and Joy Wieser. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Printed in West Germany
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W. Lutz's book "Life Without Bread" has seen nine German editions and is now available in English. Although its provocative theories have found not only agreement but also opposition it nevertheless always offers stimulating reading . The twentieth century has been dominated by the "lipid theory" of arteriosclerosis. This theory assumes that the leading causes of death (heart attacks, strokes) which are complications of arteriosclerosis are adversely affected by lipids such as cholesterol and "saturated" (animal) fats but are counteracted by unsaturated vegetable fats. The theory is accepted by leading scientific organizations and supported by powerful commercial interests . Lutz's ideas have challenged the lipid theory which also some others (like myself) believe to be bullton sand. Lutz's treatment of the subject of carbohydrates vs protein-fat consumption is quite ingenuous. He studied the evolutionary development of food consumption and concludes that during the last 5,000 years a relatively sudden change has occurred by the introduction of high amounts of starches. On this basis he favors the return to the early practices to which man was accustomed. He claims that a protein-fat diet has advantages in the treatment of many conditions. Lutz's approach is controversial but his ideas deserve to be tested.
Hans Kaunitz M.D.
Clinical Professor of Pathology (retired)
Columbia University, New York
The first edition of this book appeared in 1967. It was a courageous feat, at a time when fat was held to be responsible for coronary infarction and many other diseases, to recommend the restriction of nutritional carbohydrate to 60 - 70 grams per day. An organization supported by the German government had even stated, without offering plausible supporting evidence, that an office employee "requires" 350 grams of carbohydrate daily ... Lutz stirred up a hornet's nest! In the ensuing years evidence from other sources and his own extensive experience have confirmed the value of his concept. "Leben ohne Brot" has become almost a slogan and the appearance of this fifth edition is convincing evidence of the impact caused by Lutz's ideas on the medical and lay public.
This book is intended primarily but not exclusively for the medical profession. Observations on his own person combined with clinical experience were the starting point for the "Life without Bread" programme. Even those who can not entirely accept Lutz's concepts and hypotheses regarding pathogenesis cannot afford to ignore this book. Clinical observations cannot be talked out of existence nor should they be dismissed simply because they conflict with one's own theories. The value of a diet can only be judged on the basis of clinical experience and practical success, and does not depend upon biochemical and physiological explanations.
Lutz's book challenges physicians to gather data on a "Life without Bread". It is an appeal to us to document results in the prophylaxis and therapy of adiposity, peptic ulcers, ulcerative colitis, hepatitis, arteriosclerosis and coronary infarction as well as to record our form of diet on which mankind lived for at least two millions years.
Prof. Hans Glatzel, Gross Groenau, Luebeck
Undoubtedly it is a special achievement when a practicing physician and doctor of internal medicine developes, without governmental support, a new form of therapy which is very successful even without the aid of the surgeon's scalpel or the pharmacist's chemistry. It goes without saying that a physician should offer his patients the benefit of every possible approach, i.e. a stimulating climate, physical exercise or dietary change, before he prescribes any medication or refers the patient to a surgeon.
Initially, Wolfgang Lutz had felt purely intuitively, without knowing the theoretical reasons, that excessive eating of quickly metabolized carbohydrates - sugar and starch - is incompatible with the extreme physical inactivity of modern Man. Glucose is essential for higher evolved organisms as the efficient systems of gluconeogenesis and regulation document. These reactions maintain the blood sugar level essential for life. However, the surplus of carbohydrates combined with minimal physical activity can throw the finely-tuned endocrine system off balance, and lead to secondary false regulations. Whole tissue complexes can thereby lose their function; even minimal stress can lead to pathological processes.
Lutz has identified and summarized very nicely the "regulatory diseases" which respond to carbohydrate restriction. Furthermore, he was the first to describe the endocrine events which underlie these disorders. Generally his view coincides with the basic metabolic regulation we have postulated based on experimental results we have, therefore in cooperation with Prof. Peter Sallmann, reproduced the chicken experiments published by Lutz, Andresen, and Buddecke, and arrived at the same conclusion, namely: the spontaneous arteriosclerosis of chickens is definitively less developed when carbohydrates are replaced by isocaloric amounts of fat or proteins. The quality of the fat is of secondary importance.
In further experiments we were able to demonstrate that the rates of tumor growth in experimental animals which follow the application of carcinogens, diminish significantly when carbohydrates are replaced by the isocaloric amount of fat. This can be interpreted as a generally increased stress tolerance of all body cells and by intensified immune mechanisms, whereby the developing tumour cells are eliminated more efficiently.
These results indicate that in addition to tobacco abstinence, a low carbohydrate nutrition is the right prophylaxis against arteriosclerosis, coronary infarct and cancer, since adequate physical exercise becomes more and more difficult to realize in today's metropolitan life styles. The same goes for diseases of the gastric intestinal mucosa, to name only a few examples.
One should wish this book, already in its 9th edition, extensive distribution. Every physician should read it and add the simple alternative of carbohydrate restriction to his therapeutic repertoire. However, this book is written in a way that the lay-person also profits from the valuable suggestions for his own nutrition, and particularly for the nutrition of his/her children. A low carbohydrate diet keeps teeth healthy more efficiently than brushing them several times a day. With this example I wish the best to "Life without Bread".
Prof. Juergen Schole, Hannover, 1986
The original title of this book when it was published in German in 1967 was "Leben ohne Brot" ("Life without Bread") - "Bread" in this case meaning carbohydrates of all kinds. The objective was to convince the reader that carbohydrate foodstuffs were detrimental to health.
When Robert Atkins' book ("Dr. Atkins' Diet Revolution") was published in 1972, it immediately became a best-seller. Atkins' success aroused the interest of the medical profession which still adhered firmly to the theory that animal fats were the culprits eventually leading to heart disease and stroke. Atkins was attacked by the American Medical Association and required to give testimony in defence of his ideas before the Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs.
This bad experience of Atkins' emphasized the lack of a scientific basis for the dogma of health on a low-carbohydrate diet. Sinde the appearance of Stefansson's book "The Fat of the Land" in 1957, many authors have proposed a diet of this nature for reducing weight. Despite a number of reports of relief in conditions such as high blood pressure, heartburn and arthrosis, the low-carbohydrate diet has remained solely a remedy for obesity. Nowhere was the suggestion made that it is man's natural mode of nutrion, and thus the ideal diet not only for the healthy but for sufferers from every type of ailment.
I have adhered to this diet myself and have observed for over 26 years its effects on well over 10,000 patients. During this time, so many hitherto unknown scientific facts have accumulated in support of the belief that "Life without Bread" is universally beneficial that I feel obliged to publish my results. It is my hope that this book will provide support for those already extolling the virtues of the diet, and that it will offer valuable information to my colleagues and to everyone whose aim is a longer and healthier life.
I hope that this first English edition will clear the way for a discussion of (refined) carbohydrates as the cause for diseases of civilization. This quest is likely to succeed since the lipid theory, which has dominated the minds of medical scientists for the past several decades, has dug its own grave. The huge and very costly epidemiological studies have indeed demonstrated that the blood-cholesterol level is somehow prognostic for the occurrence of heart attacks.
However, the subsequent intervention trials were hardly effective. Apparently, a diet poor in fat and cholesterol can lower the incidence of heart attacks to a small degree but has little influence on the overall mortality. A population which feeds on a diet that contradicts the evolutionarily-evolved nutritional composition will have to face many privations with little or no gain in health status.
We will have to leave the beaten track of animal fat and cholesterol restriction and remember that essentially we are still what we were when we emerged from the paleolithic era and began to conquer the earth: hunters, or at best hunters and gatherers. Our physiology had no time to change fundamentally in the following few thousand years; our body is still adapted to the consumption of proteins and lipids. Consequently, the contemporary intake of (refined) carbohydrates is harmful -- exceeding the amount a paleolithic gatherer could carry home.
I hope this English edition will help to change the minds of medical scientists and eventually revise the nutritional views of the general population.
The best way of convincing a layman of the correctness of an idea is by an experiment Involving his own person. I can give an almost certain promise that scarcely anyone will not discover some kind of improvement in his well-being. The physicians is in a simple position, for he needs only incorporate this form of nutrition in his therapeutic repertoire, and will find that he has never had so many grateful patients.
He will, however, have to reckon with difficulties. Again and again I will point out that the effect of a low-carbohydrate diet is dependent upon two processes opposed to each other. On the one hand, there is an improvement in the quality of tissues and organs and on the other forces originating in the immune system are mobilized are directed against the body's own organs (auto-aggression). Since, unbeknown to us, immune diseases of this kind may be latent within us, it is strongly recommended that a low (refined) carbohydrate diet should be supervised by a physician if any disturbing symptoms exist or develop.
Since a "Life without Bread" involves a number of medical measures I want to address myself at this point to my professional colleagues, particularly the younger generation. Perhaps with the eagerness for new ideas that is characteristic of youth they may even be prepared to abandon the older theories. It is my hope and conviction that sooner or later clinics and research establishments will approach research in human nutrition with an open mind, unhampered by preconceived ideas. I have no doubt that an approach of this kind would bring additional confirmation of the observations described in this book. Despite the difficulties connected with a change of diet in sick adults, a restriction of (refined) carbohydrate is in many cases the only hope left. And furthermore it provides a basis for successful treatment of diseases of civilization.
I appeal here to clinicians to collect exact data on their patients and in animal experiments. It is not enough to talk about different types of diet and to leave it to others to discover whether a particular diet leads to alterations in physiological values or brings improvements in health or even a prolongation of life. Measurements of this kind are reported in this book. Anyone who has found himself or herself in the position of an outsider trying to penetrate the sacred precinct of established scientific theory will appreciate the difficulties that I have encountered. That it was possible at all is due to Dr. med. Erdmuthe Idris, who considered the manuscript of an unknown author to be suitable for publication, thus bringing it to the notice of the German medical world.
As regards the scientific side of the work involved, I warmly acknowledge the cooperation of Prof. Dr. Jurgen Schole, Hannover, West Germany; of Dr. Heinrich Iselstoger, Wien, Austria; and Prof. Dr. Kurt Eckel, Bad Ischl, and in particular the assistance of Prof. Dr. Guenther Weitzel and Prof. Dr. Eckhard Buddecke of the Institutes of Physiological Chemistry in Tuebingen and Munster (West Germany). In professor Weitzel I found a ready listener when, as a physician completely unknown to him, I approached him with my idea that humans as well as chickens were led away from their original mode of nutrition with the introduction of carbohydrates by agriculture, and that this might be the explanation for the similar forms of arteriosclerosis seen in the two species. He willingly and generously placed his experience and the facilities of his institute at my disposal. Prof. Buddecke has assisted me in the continuation and completion of these experiments.
My thanks finally go to Mrs. Beatrice Idris-Duncan, San Raphael, CA, USA; Mrs. Joy Wieser, lnnsbruck, Austria, for this expert translation, and to Dr. Erdmuthe Idris Planegg near Munich. Without her taking interest in this book it would not have appeared.
..... and this is where the book begins.
You can continue reading Chapter VII: Gastrointestinal Tract
Or: About the author
We remind you of the copyright: No part of this text may be distributed, downloaded, reproduced in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Service to Danish readers: Danish translation of certain difficult words and medical terms
A new English version of Lutz's book about his low-carbohydrate diet has been published. The details are:
Title: Life Without Bread: How a Low-Carbohydrate Diet Can Save Your Life
Authors: Christian B. Allan, Ph.D. and Wolfgang Lutz, M.D. (Allan's bio says he was a researcher at various academic and government labs, and now works for a biotech company).
Published by: Keats Publishing, Los Angeles, 2000
(paperback, 240 pages, includes index and references).
Price: US $16.95 (Canadian $24.95)
Available from Amazon.com.
Someone told me that if you go to the IBD book store, you will find the book listed there: IBD - IBS Book Store.
Otherwise, the German version of the book can be ordered at:
Other books by Dr. Wolfgang Lutz:
Postage is not included in the prices mentioned above. Expect app. DM 6.00 for postage (within Europe).
On-line excerpt production: May - July 1997
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The excerpts were scanned from the original book by Rolf, Denmark, May 1997
Handling, central coordination, HTML translation, and web-siting: Mik [email@example.com], Denmark, May-July 1997
Editing and "massaging" of scanned copy: Dietmar [firstname.lastname@example.org], Canada, June-July 1997
Input and "massaging" of references: Barbara Mills, Canada, July