Joanna Blythman in The Guardian:
The investigative journalist Gary Taubes is known for his painstakingly researched and withering demolitions of the “eat less, move more” diet orthodoxy, but his latest book is personal. The Case for Keto is aimed at “those of us who fatten easily”. Taubes locates himself in this beleaguered group, “despite an addiction to exercise for the better part of a decade” and a diet of “low-fat, mostly plant ‘healthy’ eating”. “I avoided avocados and peanut butter because they were high in fat and I thought of red meat, particularly steak and bacon, as an agent of premature death. I ate only the whites of egg.” Yet still he remained overweight.
Taubes started to shed those pounds when he realised that one-size-fits-all diet advice fails, among other reasons, because people are metabolically different. Some of us can eat fattening carbohydrates and sugar and get away with it; others can’t. Those who claim to have “a sluggish metabolism” are too often seen as making lame excuses for their weakness and indulgence. This punitive view – that fat people could easily be thin people if only they would eat less and exercise more diligently – is wrong, says Taubes. It amounts to what the philosopher Francis Bacon called “wishful science”, based on “fancies, opinions and the exclusion of contrary evidence”.
More likely, people who are perpetually fighting to lose weight have “a metabolic disorder of excess fat accumulation”. They store fat when they ought to burn it for energy. They become “insulin-resistant”, meaning that their insulin levels stay higher for longer in a day than is ideal. These people are predisposed to hold on to fat, notably above the waist, rather than to mobilise it. The only solution for them, Taubes says, is keto.