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If everyone had Warren Buffett's Diet


AzCactus
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I was just reading through the transcript from the annual meeting a few weeks back and got to thinking what would happen if we all adopted Buffett's diet.  My opinion Coke stock would rise.  Diabetes and obesity would rise at an even faster rate and those who make vegetables maybe in trouble. 

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It seems to work for him, I doubt it would work for most though.  As you said Diabetes and obesity (already pretty bad) would be a lot worse.  My grandfather lived until 90 even though he smoked 60 unfiltered cigarettes a day for his last 75 years or so.  I wouldn't recommend that either, although it worked for him.

 

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Does anyone really believe he eats like that all the time?  I dont.  I have read somewhere that he drinks diet coke when he wants to keep his weight in check and works out with a personal trainer.  I think it was discussed in Snowball. 

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Does anyone really believe he eats like that all the time?

 

Like what? He does eat like it's described in Snowball all the time. He may work out and use personal trainer, but that's separate from diet.

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Does anyone really believe he eats like that all the time?  I dont.  I have read somewhere that he drinks diet coke when he wants to keep his weight in check and works out with a personal trainer.  I think it was discussed in Snowball.

 

He eats like that all the time, it's pretty well known by those around him. I was at a meeting a few years ago with Susie Buffett.

She talked about her dad's diet. It was fascinating.  "I've never seen my dad drink a glass of water. I've never seen him eat a vegetable other than

french fries or sometimes corn. I've never seen him eat fruit other than banana pie. He knows exactly how many calories he can

consume a day. My dad eats exactly what he wants. His typical dinner at home is a ham sandwich and a bowl of ice cream.

He used to try to motivate us kids to lose weight by offering us cash per pounds."

 

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Meh... people exaggerate the role of "unhealthy" foods. It ultimately comes in to matching calories consumed with calories burned. As a  nutritionist I know likes to say, there are no unhealthy foods, just unhealthy quantities. A lot of the foods we call unhealthy simply pack a deceptively large amount of calories, something which I think Buffett recognizes and moderates his healthy or normal intake to reflect that, most people don't. Humans in general are pretty adaptive omnivores and can make a "diet" out of just about anything. Yeah you might suffer some nutrient deficiencies but there are vitamins to correct that.

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Meh... people exaggerate the role of "unhealthy" foods. It ultimately comes in to matching calories consumed with calories burned. As a  nutritionist I know likes to say, there are no unhealthy foods, just unhealthy quantities. A lot of the foods we call unhealthy simply pack a deceptively large amount of calories, something which I think Buffett recognizes and moderates his healthy or normal intake to reflect that, most people don't. Humans in general are pretty adaptive omnivores and can make a "diet" out of just about anything. Yeah you might suffer some nutrient deficiencies but there are vitamins to correct that.

 

The problem is a lot of people don't have to discipline to, say, eat 2000 calories of cake and cola and then call it quits for the day. Those foods are usually low-fiber, low-satiety, addictive (taste wise), and provide an insulin spike followed by a crash...these factors strongly encourage over-consumption.

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If we're talking about weight, it's all about calories in versus calories out. You can eat 2,000 calories of unhealthy foods and gain/maintain/lose the same weight you would if you ate 2,000 calories of healthy foods. While on the scale you may be the same weight, your body will be a mess internally if you just drank coke and ate fast food, which is when nutrients such as protein, fiber, carbs, fats, cholesterol, sugar, etc. come into play.

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There's a lot to calories in calories out. Another example is Chad Johnson (Ochocinco). The guy eats MxDonalds everyday and is still in great shape.

 

A Coke a day or one McDonalds meal a days isn't going to kill you.

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There's a lot to calories in calories out. Another example is Chad Johnson (Ochocinco). The guy eats MxDonalds everyday and is still in great shape.

 

A Coke a day or one McDonalds meal a days isn't going to kill you.

 

I completely agree, you can consume these foods and be healthy, but Coke and McDonald's are definitely not the most nutritious foods.

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Well, nutrition science is barely a science, or better stated, we are just at the beginning of understanding a lot of what is going on. There is a lot of false info swirling around and it doesn't help that food is so much a cultural thing.  Take for example the statement we need three meals a day.  Well, that has never been proven and many believe that throughout history,  humans had just one meal per day. In the current time our Ag department is there to help farmers not to recommend what is best.

 

Furthermore, it is hard to do good studies with diet, double blind ain't possible if you are eating steak vs vegetables, plus people aren't rats so you can't feed 'em and wait for them to die to see what their died of, etc. As well our bodies are incredibly complex.  People react both to insult, e.g. some carcinogen or to potentially beneficial compound differently.  There is a hugely complex interaction of our genes with the environment. (For example, some people do not properly process Omega 3 derived from flax, so to get the benefit of Omega 3 they need extra 'help', if they are vegetarians or don't like fishy pills)

 

Thus everybody has the anecdotal story of the smoking 90 year old, which proves precisely nothing.

 

Now that said on to the Buffett diet.

 

Meh... people exaggerate the role of "unhealthy" foods. It ultimately comes in to matching calories consumed with calories burned. As a  nutritionist I know likes to say, there are no unhealthy foods, just unhealthy quantities. A lot of the foods we call unhealthy simply pack a deceptively large amount of calories, something which I think Buffett recognizes and moderates his healthy or normal intake to reflect that, most people don't. Humans in general are pretty adaptive omnivores and can make a "diet" out of just about anything. Yeah you might suffer some nutrient deficiencies but there are vitamins to correct that.

 

How to put this delicately, wrong, wrong, wrong.  Sure you can make a diet of it as you say, but mortality rates will increase, all things being equal, this is guaranteed. Now there are people who are naturally long lived and will probably live longer than the well and properly nourished person disposed to a short life, but that is not the issue at hand.  As as far as evolution goes, you feed an 19 year old burgers and fries and they will shall we say have sufficient energy to get it on, but will he or she live to 95?

A Coke a day or one McDonalds meal a days isn't going to kill you.
No it won't kill you today, but check in on your 90th birthday.

 

In no case, am I saying that being overfed on broccoli is good, but that is really really hard to do, because vegetables are not so calorically dense.

If we're talking about weight, it's all about calories in versus calories out. You can eat 2,000 calories of unhealthy foods and gain/maintain/lose the same weight you would if you ate 2,000 calories of healthy foods. While on the scale you may be the same weight, your body will be a mess internally if you just drank coke and ate fast food, which is when nutrients such as protein, fiber, carbs, fats, cholesterol, sugar, etc. come into play.

 

See for example the (sort of) crossover study, where a group of African-americans switched from a (Buffett type, burgers, french fries, etc) diets with South Africans, who ate the Buffett diet.  The African-Americans' markers for developing colon cancer went way down and the South Africans' markers went way up. (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150428/ncomms7342/full/ncomms7342.html).  To Munger point at the last AM, the South Africans loved the diet. 

If we're talking about weight, it's all about calories in versus calories out. You can eat 2,000 calories of unhealthy foods and gain/maintain/lose the same weight you would if you ate 2,000 calories of healthy foods. While on the scale you may be the same weight, your body will be a mess internally if you just drank coke and ate fast food, which is when nutrients such as protein, fiber, carbs, fats, cholesterol, sugar, etc. come into play.

You will be messed up inside, So the idea is better to be eating good food and fit, even if you are over weight.

 

Or the study of women who had breast cancer, lived longer if they ate cruciferous vegetables.

 

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I agree that healthier food is in general most likely better for us all. I eat lean meats, protein, and some complex carbs. I throw in some unhealthy meals here and there. That's just what I like to do. I hope it pays off.

 

There are some solid examples of people not eating "healthy" and still having great body composition and appearing to be reasonably healthy. I prefer moderation.

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In Snowball, Alice mentions that Buffett is deathly afraid of dying, so Buffett pays a lot of attention to his health. Buffett has always stayed in good shape. I agree with others that Buffett has amazing discipline because if we all ate like him, we would not have the self-discipline to stop drinking that next can of Coke.

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WB has at least joked of not being very disciplined ("just making things that make sense to him"), that is why he weighs more than he would like to.

 

I assume he only takes exercise when forced, I've never heard / seen him do any sports. He drives a car, and sits in his chair, reading all day or calls people on the phone.

 

Do you know does he abstain from alcohol? I haven't even thought about the topic.

 

Funny thing is that in his early years he seemed to be drinking pepsi, and switched to coke only later, maybe when he invested in KO.  ??? And it seems to vary if he takes a regular (normally) or a diet (sometimes) one.

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Does anyone really believe he eats like that all the time?  I dont.  I have read somewhere that he drinks diet coke when he wants to keep his weight in check and works out with a personal trainer.  I think it was discussed in Snowball.

 

He eats like that all the time, it's pretty well known by those around him. I was at a meeting a few years ago with Susie Buffett.

She talked about her dad's diet. It was fascinating.  "I've never seen my dad drink a glass of water. I've never seen him eat a vegetable other than

french fries or sometimes corn. I've never seen him eat fruit other than banana pie. He knows exactly how many calories he can

consume a day. My dad eats exactly what he wants. His typical dinner at home is a ham sandwich and a bowl of ice cream.

He used to try to motivate us kids to lose weight by offering us cash per pounds."

 

So, he's a fat shamer?

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I agree that healthier food is in general most likely better for us all. I eat lean meats, protein, and some complex carbs. I throw in some unhealthy meals here and there. That's just what I like to do. I hope it pays off.

 

There are some solid examples of people not eating "healthy" and still having great body composition and appearing to be reasonably healthy. I prefer moderation.

 

I'd say those examples (like my 90year old smoking grandfather) are examples of good genes, not evidence that junk food is OK.  Like I said, if it works for WEB that is great for him.  I wouldn't use it as a model to recommend though.  Nutrition is a lot more complicated than almost everyone assumes.  What is good for me, may not be good for you, and it might not be good for me either in 10 years.  It is a combination of genetics, epigenetics, hormones, metabolism, lifestyle, age, environment, food quality, micronutrients, macronutrients, contaminants, the quantity and types of bacteria currently inhabiting your digestive system, the condition of your liver, kidneys, and other organs, and probably 50 other variables that I haven't listed.  Any studies done or advice given can only tell you about statistically what is probably good for you to eat, it can't tell you what your body actually needs at this point in time.  You are an individual not a statistical average.

 

 

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