My Podcast with The Delightful Jimmy Moore

Some criticize Jimmy for his seemingly endless advocacy of a low-carb diet in spite of perceived and cited evidence and experience (In the opinion and judgment of some). All the while, I'm in the midst of blogging about LC criticism and speculation. And yet, I have no need of attacking Jimmy or LC folks at all.

What gives?

I get it. He, in that capacity of his podcast, is an advocate. But—and I listen to most of his shows (I do skip over a few) even if it takes me months—he is fearless when it comes to contradictory views, opinions, perspectives.

What more can you ask for?

Would you prefer a guy who only has on guests that tout his own prescriptions and proscriptions? Say, as they change? So, Jimmy is livinlavidalowcarb one month, livinlavidarawfuit the next, and so on?

It is what it is.

Jimmy gets lots of people to listen to his shows (100-150K downloads per episode), and if you do the easy math, it means that if you get to be on the show he's worked tirelessly to build, you get to have a lot of people listen to you. Who loses? Who gains? Who cares about the general welfare of people who are so far off the mark that a reasonable portion means substituting low fat milk for whole in their their 3rd Starbucks sugar coffee of the day?

It's not only an easy equation, but an easy tradeoff, to me. Some might criticize me for my lack of principles, so perceived. But then again, I don't vote: because I'd never do that to you (I'm a non voter on principle). And while I have differences with Jimmy...and if he asked me, would admonish him to do some different things—including mind oriented things.... I could never, ever deny the huge value he has been to the Paleo community. I have benefited from both the low carb and Paleo communities and I'm adverse to purposely tossing the butter and jelly side of my toast face down on the dirty carpet, since chances are, that'll happen easy enough anyway.

It's a simple realization. Just like a nasty divorce makes me instinctively flinch—wondering how in the world people who've shared the deepest intimacy possible can instantly turn and act as though that same person is the most vile on Earth—I cannot support a blanket dismissal, trouncing, disrespecting of those I may have discovered disagreements and differences with.

In the end, I can't predict divorce or reconciliation vis-a-vis low carb and paleo. But I hope I came off reasonable.

Now, go listen to my 40ish minutes on the line with Jimmy.

Comments

  1. Jimmy does a great podcast. It’s when he tries to curate debates that his limited expertise on certain subjects becomes evident. He doesn’t seem to know how to distinguish idiot from expert. It’s also too bad he can’t be more creative about finding sponsors that don’t sell industrially-produced garbage masquerading as health food.

    • I’m a little weary of this angle on Jimmy’s situation. So he discovered low carb years ago and was so passionate about it, he wanted to devote himself to it full time. He did that the best way he could, and now that he’s sampling the real food revolution, he can’t just turn the boat around overnight. His life’s economic foundations are tied up in this, and it would take some serious overhaul to change that in a way that wasn’t threatening. Give the guy a break.

      How many of us would love to make money at Paleo? I see lots of hands. But from what I can tell, most folks, even the well-known ones, have a day job (trainer, nutritionist, alternative health practitioner, etc.). As a writer/editor, I’ve decided to put my energies into helping out the real food/movement cause, but trust me, it ain’t paying any bills around here.

      • “His life’s economic foundations are tied up in this, and it would take some serious overhaul to change that in a way that wasn’t threatening.”

        You could say that about all kinds of things. Are you excused from integrity if your livelihood is at stake? I don’t think so.

      • I’m glad things are that simple for you.

      • It seems to me that one could continue to use and promote a lower-carb strategy of eating while recognizing that calories do indeed count in the end, even fat. It’s a perfectly legitimate means of reducing intake. But not the only way. It is pretty unfortunate that certain low-carbers continue to basically say that if you can’t get lean by reducing carbs you are probably stuck being fat forever, when there might be other things to try, besides adding more butter and coconut oil.

      • Big Boi says:

        Your hand’s definitely in the air, waving like you just don’t care. Unfortunately for you, no one seems to care about your blog, either.

        Maybe you should focus less on economic foundations, and more on moral and ethical ones.

        Good luck with your t-shirt sales.

    • Jay Jay says:

      I lost a lot of weight eating a lot of that carb garbage frankenfoods. And I knew it wasn’t “health food”.

      But it certainly worked.

      Of course, I moved beyond it eventually, but that’s an issue totally separate from the weight loss aspects.

    • M – In regards to your criticism about Jimmy’s sponsors, I think he is moving in the direction you are talking about. In recent podcasts, his sponsors have been The LowCarb Cruise (Jimmy’s event), PaleoFX, CalorieGate (a free online resource about lowcarb, I believe), Sean Croxton’s ebook (Dark Side of Fat Loss), and Ben Greenfield’s LowCarb Triathlete training program. Are ALL of his sponsors paleo/real food, no, but as a devoted listener, I can tell you that it seems like there has been a shift from processed lowcarb to more real food/paleo/informational sponsors.

  2. Something struck me here… no ones ever captured my own reaction to divorce so succinctly… I’m glad I’m not alone in that gut-wrenching disbelief.

    A minor point irrelevant to the main thrust of the article, but i do believe its a point worth making.

  3. Jay Jay says:

    It should be pointed out that it comes to pure hard science (double blind clinical trials), low carb wins out, hands down.

    Now, the actual mechanisms at play are up for debate. And there is a bunch of interesting in vitro type science going on there.

    And yes, I’m being a bit disingenuous, because Paleo is still to new to have been through the rigors of clinical trials. Hopefully, that will change over the next few years, and we’ll eventually figure this stuff out.

    • “It should be pointed out that it comes to pure hard science (double blind clinical trials), low carb wins out, hands down”

      And then ther are those couple of dozen mundane, tightly controlled metabolic ward studies where the researchers could actually know and precisely measure what the subjects ate and didn’t .

      And guess what?

      • FrankG says:

        I don’t know anyone who lives in a metabolic ward Richard… do you? ;-)

        The only way to make calories in vs. calories out a practical proposition for control of excess fat mass is: to measure everythingin and out including breathing/respiration… otherwise you are not dealing with a closed system… and the First Law of Thermodynamics applies to a closed system — hence the need to lock test subjects in a metabolic ward/chamber.

        Yes calories count at some level — probably at the cellular level which might be considered a closed system — but we have no conscious control of our cells or energy partitioning within our bodies other than by the choices in what we eat and, to a lesser extent, our level of physical activity.

        As I read it, Gary Taubes etc… also acknowledge that calories are part of the story but not one that we can practically impact in the long term. Yes we might consciously count calories for a while but at every meal, every day, for the rest of your life? And even then we have no way of knowing how much of that energy has been absorbed, where it has been partitioned, how it is being used, or even anything more than a very rough estimate of how much we are burning, storing or excreting.

        To me hunger is a primal drive — much like breathing or thirst — and while I may hold my breath under conscious control for a short while, or go thirsty if water is scarce, it is not something that I can ignore in the long term without potentially deadly consequences.

        Animals in the wild, eating their natural food do not count calories — nor do most human animals for that matter. It is an innate ability that I suspect has been broken by the frankenfoods which resulted from mass the low-fat “experiment”.

        I don’t count anything anymore: carbs, calories… nothing. I started LCHF over 3 years ago, I lost 25lbs in the first month and then went on to lose over 100lbs; which I have maintained effortlessly since that time. Increasingly I find that I can rely more and more on my body to tell me when (and even to some extent “what”) it needs in the way of nourishment.

        Does food reward make sense? Do I tend to eat more of something (in the short term) if it tastes good while not leaving me satiated? Sure I do… but why make the leap from that to assuming that my brain has now decided to raise my fat set-point so that I will eat more? Doesn’t Occam’s Razor apply here with the more obvious conclusion that I am just eating more because it tastes good while not leaving me satiated..?

        At the same time I am still convinced that at least part of the reason for my eating more of these frankenfoods is because of the effect of the sugars and refined carbs (cheap fillers to replace the natural fats) that stimulate insulin secretion, store fat and leaves my hungry at the cellular level.

        Can anyone please list some high reward foods that do not contain sugars and/or refined starches?

        Taubes etc.. are not stating that any amount of carbs will make you fat… once again it comes down to quantity and quality.

        Nor do I read Taubes etc… stating that there is a metabolic advantage such that you can eat 4000 calories of just fat and not get fat! Eating freely does not mean binging… rather that you eat until satisfied and then stop eating. Just like every other animal out there. Yes I know the old chestnut about super-abundance of food these days but how often to do you see an obese rabbit surrounded by an endless meadow of grass? Or obese lions where there are herds of wildebeest sweeping majestically across the plain…?

        People seem to delight in misquoting or misstating Taubes etc… presumably in an effort to discredit what hasn’t actually been stated. I personally see room for discussion about Food Reward alongside the Carbohydrate-Insulin Hypothesis. Why do they need to be mutually exclusive?

        In your ongoing experiment Richard you may have increased your carbs but I’d suggest you are still eating fewer carbs than the Standard American Diet and also that they are of a real whole food quality — i.e. not refined. If you think you could achieve the same results by eating twinkies or drinking cola I’d be genuinely interested in hearing more. I wonder if you have also considered that your ability to tolerate a larger proportion of carbohydrates now might be due to the fact that: by starting with LCHF you have lost excess fat mass and in doing so have reduced Insulin Resistance and overall improved your metabolic state?

      • Frank,
        So very well said! Thank you.

      • You nailed it.

        I don’t get all this venom against low-carb. Gary Taubes has always said that calories do count. Go reread his books if you don’t understand.

      • “Doesn’t Occam’s Razor apply here with the more obvious conclusion that I am just eating more because it tastes good while not leaving me satiated..?”

        Uh, that’s food reward, basically.

        “At the same time I am still convinced that at least part of the reason for my eating more of these frankenfoods is because of the effect of the sugars and refined carbs (cheap fillers to replace the natural fats) that stimulate insulin secretion, store fat and leaves my hungry at the cellular level.”

        That doesn’t follow from what you just said.

        “In your ongoing experiment Richard you may have increased your carbs but I’d suggest you are still eating fewer carbs than the Standard American Diet and also that they are of a real whole food quality — i.e. not refined. If you think you could achieve the same results by eating twinkies or drinking cola I’d be genuinely interested in hearing more.”

        Thanks for pretending that my position is actually your position. Appreciated.

      • I am still convinced that at least part of the reason for my eating more of these frankenfoods is because of the effect of the sugars and refined carbs (cheap fillers to replace the natural fats) that stimulate insulin secretion, store fat and leaves my hungry at the cellular level.

        “That doesn’t follow from what you just said.”

        Certainly it does Richard.. it explains *why* a food can taste good while not leaving me satiated — it offers a mechanism which leaves me still hungry even after eating a tube of Pringles.

        And *is* the food reward hypothesis just about eating more because something tastes good while not leaving me satiated..? or doesn’t it go further to propose a brain-mediated “fat set-point” which controls our overall fat storage and is what drives us to store more fat and therefor to eat more of the high reward food? It was this further point to which I suggested applying Occams’ Razor.

        I”m also unclear on your position about the claim by some that low-carb works because of a “metabolic advantage” — to my knowledge I have never made such a claim but instead am convinced (as you also appear to be in some of your posts) that sugars and refined starches are especially *not* satiating (the opposite in fact) and this is what gave me the edge when I went low-carb… I was no longer hungry all the time.

      • “And *is* the food reward hypothesis just about eating more because something tastes good while not leaving me satiated..? or doesn’t it go further to propose a brain-mediated “fat set-point” which controls our overall fat storage and is what drives us to store more fat and therefor to eat more of the high reward food? It was this further point to which I suggested applying Occams’ Razor.”

        I don’t know, but suspect it’s the high reward low satiation that gets the ball rolling, packs on fat, and the added fat over time increases the fat set point so that you overeat even on satiating foods as well. You just plain overeat.

        But I’m speculating.

        “I”m also unclear on your position about the claim by some that low-carb works because of a “metabolic advantage” — to my knowledge I have never made such a claim but instead am convinced (as you also appear to be in some of your posts) that sugars and refined starches are especially *not* satiating (the opposite in fact) and this is what gave me the edge when I went low-carb… I was no longer hungry all the time.”

        No metabolic advantage. See my latest post on that. I’m not sure what you mean by refined starches. Like potato chips? Yea, high reward, not very satiating. But a backed potato, at least for me, is a whole other story, even with a sensible pat or two of butter and tablespoon of sour cream. Some days, lunch is merely one medium sized yellow sweet potato nuked, with a bit of butter and cinnamon, and it keeps me satiated for hours.

      • Refined starches would for me indeed mean man-made or processed like Pringels, as opposed to a baked or boiled potato which I count as real, whole food.

        I’ll admit to my own confusion over the food reward hypothesis but I’m pretty sure that a core component of it is central control (brain) of a fat set-point, that simultaneously increases fat storage and hunger. Perhaps Stephan Guyenet can shed some light for you?

    • My fucking god, why don’t people get this:

      YES, low-carb regimens have been shown to improve a litany of biomarkers and health outcomes in long-term RCTs but guess what? THE DIETS WERE HYPOCALORIC. The effects of low-carb were being confounded by weight-loss.

      As Richard rightly said, (thanks to the work of A.Colpo), metabolic ward trials have no shown ANY statistically significant greater fat-derived weight loss with low-carb diets in an isocaloric context.

      On the other hand:
      Low-carb is terrible for athletes
      Low-carb impairs thyroid activity
      Low-carb (keto) has a wide range of documented side-effects

      In my opinion this paradigm shift is long overdue, Paleo NEVER meant low-carb. Cheers to Richard for going against the status quo.

      • You need to read the work of Jeff Volek and Stephen Phinney if you think any of what you posted is true.

      • couple of things i’d like to say here. i have great respect for volek and phinney, and i’ve read their phenomenal book, art & science of low carb living.

        one thing to note: they believe in calories, and creating deficits to lose weight.
        a second thing to note: all the science in the world won’t convince people that have experienced otherwise. i was in ketosis and loving it for a solid year before i noticed any issues, and ultimately gave that up. i think some people may never experience problems with it, some will. some folks won’t have performance impacted, some will. some, like me, will feel fine and perform and recover fine for a while, and then – things will change! gotta keep an open mind.

      • Yea, it’s bizarre to me that you have all these LC folks saying “don’t count” and “calories don’t count” and they’ll reference guys like Eades (thinks calories count) and volek and phinney (thinks calories count).

        So where are they getting this information? Is it just folklore?

      • I think all these LC folks are saying that when you eat LC, you don’t really have to count calories, because you’re done eating before you’ve eaten “too much”! Of course that’s not the same as saying that calories don’t count. It’s just saying that your don’t have to count calories.

      • Elenor says:

        Ah yes, the vaunted “metabolic ward” studies: please read here:
        http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/weight-loss/ac-metabolic-advantage-dismemberment/
        and
        here:
        http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/weight-loss/ac-fat-loss-bible-critique-part-ii/

        Why do you give such credence to these studies, when MOST studies need a much closer look — read any John Ionnides!? Please also see “Science for Smart People” by Tom Naughton (it’s free on YouTube!). The metabolic ward studies AC crows about have the same sorts of disabling flaws most studies have!

      • Elanor:

        So you quote Eades, eh?

        Cool, because as I said in my interview with Jimmy, I doubt Eades would have any problem with what I was saying. He clearly states that the metabolic advantage is 100-300 calories.

        That is not a “calories don’t count on VLC” position so many tout.

        If you read Ch1 of AC’s TFLB he very carefully addresses all of the issues about the MW studies and he does it for every single study lasting at least 3 weeks or more in the English language.

        You know what LCers (and some Paleos) constantly harp on about not counting calories? Because that keeps them from understanding the truth of the matter. That said, calories count but why bother counting? However, the reason I don’t typically count is not because calories don’t matter, but because I do for lower reward and higher satiation so I’m pretty comfortable that on average, I’m eating less and as a result, should begin again to lose fat.

      • “That said, calories count but why bother counting? However, the reason I don’t typically count is not because calories don’t matter, but because I do for lower reward and higher satiation so I’m pretty comfortable that on average, I’m eating less and as a result, should begin again to lose fat.”

        And this is the bottom line. The entire argument raging about metabolic advantage and if calories count is just a waste of perfectly good oxygen. I lost weight on a low fat diet back in the day. I lost weight on a LCHF diet more recently.

        The difference between the two is on Low Fat I HAD to be cognizant of my calorie intake as I was hungry pretty much all the time. Eating LCHF I don’t concern myself with calories. Does that mean they don’t count on LCHF? No, it means I don’t count them.

        Richard, I envy you, you’re going to get rich discussing and rehashing the obvious! LOL

      • “Richard, I envy you, you’re going to get rich discussing and rehashing the obvious! LOL”

        Ha. If only it were that simple.

      • I agree MW studies can be used to draw valid conclusions. After all, they are conducted in prison-like environments where “inmates” food is perfectly controlled.

        However, due to their limitations, I have a problems:

        Due to the expense of a MW study, the time frame and the number of participants is limited by financial constraints. Consequently, we cannot arrive to a universal conclusion because:

        1. The study was not long enough. Can you reach a universal conclusion on a 3 week study? 3 months? The results do not reflect the longevity of humans. Otherwise how can you account, for example, age induced changes?

        2. The results are only valid with respect to the MW “inmates.” These conclusions cannot be applied to the population of the world. You would need to obtain an statistical random sample of the world’s population and imprison them in the MW to draw a valid conclusion that applies to everybody.

        3. The MW studies are not identical. We are comparing apples and bananas.

        MW study provide a good starting point. But due to the above limitations, we cannot draw absolute conclusions from them.

        Therefore, we are left with only one study. What works for us. Which may not be what worked for Joe or Bill.

      • I could buy this argument if the results showed different weight loss amongst different diets, but the fact that they all show the same (actually, more weight loss in HC diets in some of them, but not statistically significant). Since we ought to logically, Occam’s Razor expect them to be the same and there are a couple dozen of them (all of which Colpo goes through in some detail and honestly acknowledges all issues where they exist) and they are the same, I think it’s “lets move along, nothing to see here” time.

        I don’t understand point 3 at all. That they are different but yet yield the same result goes to the asset side of the balance sheet in my world.

        There is another reason to go with MW studies beyond the fact that calories can be precisely measured and other factors like hydration can be factored in, and that’s energy expenditure above RMR is moderated since they’re all in the same place.

      • “I don’t understand point 3 at all.” Allow me to illustrate you. None of the MW studies, as far as I can tell from the available information, tested the same type of person, fed exactly the same diet, calories, etc.

        If you came into a court of law with evidence such as MW studies, you would be laughed out of court unless you were able to secure a group of gullible jurors that you could bamboozle with junk science.

        I repeat, although the MW studies are a good starting point for further research, they lack the scientific/statistical rigor to be designated a law, such as the law of gravity, due to the aforementioned deficiencies.

        But don’t get me wrong. I don’t care if you tailor your diet around MW studies, diet books, what you like to eat, what your wife cooks, what you can afford, etc.

        But you are not going to tell me what to eat based on MW studies as the ultimate truth because they are not.

        And who the hell are you to tell me what to eat anyway.

      • “The results are only valid with respect to the MW “inmates.” These conclusions cannot be applied to the population of the world.”

        Nice logic. So no study is relevant beyond the results of the subjects in the study?

        Sounds like some nice low carb weasel word logic to me

      • Hey creep, the only weasel here is you.

        I follow Clarence Bass’ 60-20-20 diet and his exercise system.

      • GalinaL. says:

        Just out of curiosity I counted my calories on LC diet for few days using Fitday.com. It is between 900 and 1500, when it is 1500, it feels like eating without a restrain.

      • That’s right. On the other hand many of those same studies did shake out one statistically significant fact that goes to LC.

        While weight loss was the same, LC diets tended to lose more fat and less lean while higher carb lower protein diets the inverse. Perfectly sensible.

      • Interesting: this study proves that there’s NO difference between diets with more fat, or more protein, or more carbs as far as weight loss is concerned: Just read: http://www.ajcn.org/content/95/3/614

        To keep the weight off for more than 2 years was difficult, but there was also no difference between the type of diets.

        They recommend coaching to keep it off.

      • “Interesting: this study proves that there’s NO difference between diets with more fat, or more protein, or more carbs as far as weight loss is concerned: Just read: http://www.ajcn.org/content/95/3/614

        I’ll take a look, but I’m sure there’s a conspiracy against LC in there somewhere. :)

      • OK, that was easy enough to spot. LCers will say the same thing they always say, that the lowest carb ratio, 35%, isn’t “Low Carb.”

        So, in other words, when someone does 150-200g, likely falling around 35-45% it’s “still low carb” or lowish carb. But if its in a study it’s not low carb. But unless I’m mistaken, even Atkins suggested carbs in the 60-120g range after induction. 120g would be 25% on a 2000cal diet.

  4. “[H]e he is fearless when it comes to contradictory views, opinions, perspectives.”

    Yeah, when it gets him page views or podcast listeners. But try registering a contradictory viewpoint on his site (which is moderated to the point of censorship) and you stand a high chance of becoming one of the banned multitudes. Jimmy’s a businessman and LLVLC a franchise. Which is fine, but I highly doubt he cares a whit about the free and open expression of ideas. As for being ‘paleo’, how is that even possible when he believes humanity suddenly appeared in the Garden of Eden some 4,000 years ago?

    • I really don’t mean to come across as an apologist, but these are a few other memes that keep popping up that drive me nuts.
      1. What blogger/podcaster do you know that doesn’t want hits?
      2. “Believing” in evolution is hardly a prerequisite. Doesn’t take a scientist to point out that the last 100 years of food theories and manufacturing have been devastating to us all. Ain’t no Wheat Thins in the Garden of Eden. Attacking people for their religious beliefs, no matter what they are, is not behavior I can get behind.

      Folks, if you’re going to attack Jimmy, can we please do so with evidence and with thoughtful commentary that moves us all forward, not backward?

      • john_b_eats says:

        Two thumbs up, Karen!

      • I’ll add two more! Being reasonable and tactful in the blogosphere, what a concept!

      • why is this limited to the blogosphere? Rode a subway/plane/train recently? Listened to a news show or read an op-ed piece in the NYT? Reasonable? Only if you agree with me or are not to smart ass with me. Then there be hugs, son

    • That was my experience with Jimmy. He basically stated he didn’t believe what he talks about. I just can’t listen to him the same without seeing the emails that we traded after he did the “there’s no such thing as a Paleo diet” show.

      Maybe you haven’t heard that one yet, Richard.

      • Jeff, I heard it (well, as much as I could stomach, but I’ve heard it all before, was educated that way). To the extent I worry about anything, it’s about people who use actual main force to impose their values upon others. If Jimmy were to ask me what I thought of his beliefs, I’d tell him the same thing I’ve already told my dad: I think they’re batshit crazy, but worse, you are all just regurgitating what you learned when little and people cruely imbibed you with fear of supernatural boogy men and nefarious places.

        Yea, it irritates me in 2012. But Jimmy is not forcing anyone, and owing to my own experience I sense where the heart is, and I think he is not hurting people but helping people. And I think he would agree that in time, everyone can help more people better.

        Yea, suppose I could make a big stink by taking on Jmmy for my own notoriety or whatever. It would probably fail badly, but even if I was deluded enough to think it would be a success, that’s just not how I operate. I like to love everyone I possible can, and hate the rest.

        But all the foregoing is kinda bullshit. I just like Jimmy Moore. Always did. When I met him at AHS last summer, I saw him in tireless action and I liked him even more. Sorry. There are many facets to people, why I might love, like, or hate them. I’m rarely indifferent.

      • “I’m rarely indifferent.”

        Um, understatement? ;)

      • I live in bible belt Oklahoma. You in liberal land California. I am probably more sensitive to the batshit crazy stuff since I hear it ALL THE FUCKING TIME.

        Saw a sign that I stole and put on my FB page. It was a welcome to Oklahoma sign that someone had added this to the bottom of the sign. Welcome to Oklahoma, now turn your clock back 50 years. Sadly, that is the truth around here.

      • “I am probably more sensitive to the batshit crazy stuff since I hear it ALL THE FUCKING TIME.”

        I gotcha. Yea, I rarely hear any of it from my family anymore, even my fundamentalist baptist uncle who used to pastor a church and now in retirement teaches at a bible school. They know better around me, but cause I’ve shown time and again that I won’t sit idly by and let bullshit go unchallenged and I don’t care who hears it. In fact, if the kids are around I’m even more likely to object loudly, and they hate that. They want to keep them in fear.

      • lol i am in mississippi jeff i know how you feel!

    • “Yeah, when it gets him page views or podcast listeners.”

      No no no. You misunderstand, nobody blogs to have anything read, page views, anything like that. We do it to read what we wrote, and you are merely a figment of my imagination in comments, just how I like it.

    • I agree with Erika.

      I watched some of his youtube channel, and asked some polite questions about his own state of health and why the diet he advocates really does not seem to be working for him seeing that he has been doing this for how many years now.

      My comment was deleted. Thought maybe was a mistake. Posted again. Deleted and banned.

      We have made fun of 30 bananas for this, but this guy does the same thing. Looking at his facebook page he seems to have a mass following of people who aren’t fairing well either.

      I wouldn’t take financial advice from someone who was bankrupt, why would I want to take nutritional advice from someone who is obese.

      I realize that his podcast is just delivering information, so I can’t fault him on that, but he also sells a book handing out, in his own words “life lessons”. I don’t think he is any shape to be sitting on his pedestal handing out life lessons when his own body is a mess.

      • D:

        OK, I’m going to agree with you that’s unfortunate. For some reason, people who blog, even before they have really any substantial readership are prone to moderate comment, having to approve a comment.

        I always thought this was a Very. Bad. Idea.

        Thing is, you get locked into or seduced by the power of being able to manage the message. You can’t. Jimmy tries to make up for it by blogging in a way that’s in itself (per se) honest and open, and of course there’s the podcast. But he controls what he blogs and he controls the podcast and you Can. Not. Ever. fool smart people.

        This is why I have, arguably, the very best comments in the paleosphere. I would never moderate, becaue not doing so keeps me more honest than any tweak I can try to make, and you guise do all the work.

        What a smart fuck I am.

  5. Hugh Anderson says:

    Jimmy Moore’s podcast is not a propaganda machine IMHO. Each guest gets to have his or her full say and Jimmy is there to ask clarifying questions. Compare this to real propaganda, like television, newspapers, magazines or other professional media outlets, where your message is gutted & edited down to nothing, or worse yet turned on its head and “debunked” without a chance for rebuttal. By agreeing to participate in those media, you become a tool to be wielded as the propagandist so chooses. Not so with Jimmy Moore’s podcast.

    As for Jimmy’s site itself, I never go there, but I can understand why it would be heavily censored. I can only imagine how many trolls they’ve had to deal with over the years.

  6. Richard, when I first came across your blog a year ago, I was alternately entranced by the well-informed but also philosophy-laced nutritional blurbs (what a combo…) and repelled by the sometimes unpredictable (for me) profane reactions.
    Then I came to see them as part of the basic honesty of your responses.
    So now, whether with Jimmy on the one side or your thoughtful posts/experiments with moderate carbs on the other, I am not at all surprised – you have integrity, sir. And courage.
    It is consistent I guess with your thoughtful atheism. You are so valuable to some of us who are starved for this fundamentally human approach in our flashy electronic age.
    Thank you, very, very much.

  7. Nice podcast.

    Quick question. When your fat loss stalled, what was your typical fasting schedule?

    • Mas, fasting is so intermittent now it is difficult to say. This starch experiment, however, is beginning to motivate me to get back into control of variables including the gym, so we’ll see over the next couple of months.

  8. Russell C says:

    What’s your take on the bulletproof diet.? I heard you on their show a while back. It seems very low carb as well

    • Russell:

      Yea, and I recently had dinner with Dave. Frankly, before that podcast I was aware of BE, but did not have time to go read a lot, only here and there.

      So, I’m not really up on what he advises. He did bring his own Kerygold butter to the steakhouse, though, which I thought pretty cool. I’ve thought of doing the same thing with olive oil for the salad.

      • Ordered the olive oil you reco’d. Whoah!

        (A female friend wanted me to use it as massage oil for her aching back. “You are clearly out of your mind. This only goes into the BELLY.” She was not pleased. I was.)

        Dave’s big thrust, so to speak, is about mycotoxins. His article on his dog’s diet (http://www.bulletproofexec.com/dachshund/) was a head tilter.

        The diet/food game reminds me of my undergrad studies in religion. There are brilliant and honest scholars (hacks?) that fall in several camps. The human mind and what it calls truth (belief if it is your thinking–Fact/truth if it is mine) and falsehood makes me grateful that sometimes I can just BE a human (animal) and not always a knowing that I know person.

    • grace (Dr.BG) says:

      It’s a range of carbs… Armistead Legge is a high carb triathlete. BE is a spectrum of carbs (just like we are a spectrum of humans)… (Asprey doesn’t work out significantly, glycolytically)

  9. John M says:

    After reading all the comments from today and the comments on Jimmy’s blog, maybe we are all full of it. Weight loss is all about calories in – calories out. I think the whole ancestral thing collapses when we admit that people ate whatever was available where they lived. So, there are no hard and fast rules for macronutrients.

    They ate no franken foods. Fine, ditch those. But what were they eating? Certainly not gently raised (yet grass fed!) meat. Like animal packs, they probably hunted for game. And like pack hunting animals, they probably took down the weakest, smallest, oldest or sickliest animal (i.e. easiest target). And let’s not kid ourselves, many of the animals they ate or perhaps even insects are just not what we are eating paleo or not. You could say we are approximating what they ate, but I wonder how close we really are. I don’t know, but it doesn’t seem like not (m)any of our paleo experts have any credentials in paleontology.

    Certainly our ancestors were no smarter than us, or perhaps they were just as dumb as us. They ate what was available in quantities that were available. If they were suddenly transported here today, they would eat the same crap we do.

    I guess I’m saying maybe we ditch the whole ancestral thing and say just eat meat, vegetables, fruit, starches, and grains to tolerance. Eat less to lose weight. Stay away from trans fats. Exercise a little or a lot. Sleep. And you know what? It’s good advice. My doctor, and perhaps yours, has been saying this for years.

    • Yep, John M:

      We’re all fucked and it’s all pointless. I’m sure that’s why you read all the comments and take time to post one yourself. You make a great example.

    • Hominds were selecting the largest and often strongest prey from at least the time of heidelbergensis The swanscombe site shows clear predation of healthy male rhinos (rhinos ffs) with wooden spears. The Ice Age europeans hunted the reindeer with the greatest concentrations of fat. Hominids are an interesting predator, succesful enoughto be able to select the healthiest most nutitious prey.
      It would be nice to see more cross over between archaeology and the paleo world. You might be able to find “Paleopathology at the orgiin of agriculture” which is a great read.
      There is more information and less guesswork than I think is generally known.
      I don;t know what your doctor has been saying but my friends doctors advise to eat more whole grains and less saturated fat. An ancestral paradigm is hugely important when confronted with modern food choices and standard dietary wisdom.

      • Well said! Quite a bit is well known. Following the discoveries in paleoanthropology/paleontology of the last 20years or so would be an awfully good idea, I would think., for anyone interested in ‘paleo’ nutrition. Another good source : “Guns, Germs and Steel” for a broad overview centered around the advent of agriculture and maybe “The Human Career” for a grounding in hominid evolution.

      • And of course, Neal’s : spearthroweruk.blogspot.com !

      • thanks marie I’ll have alook at the human career.

      • FrankG says:

        I have been fortunate in my life to go caribou hunting with the Inuit — of course it is snowmobiles and rifles these days but (when available) the choice of animal was carefully made in picking out the fattest, healthiest female; with the back-fat being one of the prized cuts.

      • Steffanson says they were doing that back in the day, archaeology shows the same choices were made on the mammoth steppe of Europe.
        Did you get any photos?

      • FrankG says:

        I wish I had photos Neal but it was back in the day before digital photography had really taken off… plus we were out there to put food on the table :-)

        It makes sense that Steffanson would have experienced the same… as I said, it is snowmobiles and rifles these days but I see no reason why the traditional rationale for which animal is best to eat would have changed because of that.

      • I was really surprised today–my doctor said the paleo diet is a great diet. She speaks with an Asian accent but I don’t know her well enough to ask about her background. Anyhow, she advised AGAINST grains. I admit I was shocked–not the speech I expected. BTW, after a year of fatty meat, many vegetables and moderate fruit my blood metrics were stellar.

    • I don’t think any of that makes much difference. Eating wild game versus eating pasture raised meat. Or eating a buffalo’s ancestor, versus eating a modern day buffalo raised on grass. Seeing as they might go after the weakest animal, eating pasture raised buffalo or beef, would quite possibly be better, if it at all made much difference in it’s nutritional profile.

      I doubt humans were eating many insects during the ice age. Those that did eat insects probably didn’t have it as a major part of their meal, unless they were starving. If they could gather enough to appropriate a snack, they’d probably pass on it, in the presence of meat. They might have eaten them out of boredom really.

      The point of paleo isn’t to mimic ancestral habits to perfection. It’s to understand the best parts of our evolution, and follow a similar guideline, and in many cases, improve upon ancient man’s dietary and “exercise” habits.

      Eating grains, which has very little nutrient density, and damaging properties to it, is not great advice. If you would enjoy eating some grains, then by all means, do so, but within the context of knowing you’re not doing it for the purposes of health. Exercising a lot is not great advice. Eating less to lose weight is not great advice either. Eat less of certain foods, yes, but you shouldn’t feel hungry constantly, except maybe for dessert.

      Just my thoughts anyway, but what do I know.

    • “just eat meat, vegetables, fruit, starches, and grains to tolerance”

      Yeah..that’s kinda the whole point of just about everyone in the non-LC paleo camp…

      • FrankG says:

        I guess I’d be labeled as being in the LC “camp” — although I seriously dislike the term; as I am an individual who takes personal responsibility while applying the best knowledge and research I can lay my hands on — but it seems you may be surprised to learn that I also subscribe to “just eat meat, vegetables, fruit, starches, and grains to tolerance”… the fact that my tolerance may be different to yours, seems to have escaped your attempt to add fuel to the “us vs. them” bonfire.

      • GalinaL. says:

        Until there are people who eat LC paleo, there is no strong separation. Not everybody is metabolically identical to Richard. I wish I could eat as much potatoes as I want, it is super delicious for me in any form except cold from the fridge.

  10. Russell C says:

    Sorry for the duplicate question Richard. I just saw you answers this on the previous post. Thanks

  11. “The large calorie, kilogram calorie, dietary calorie, or food calorie (symbol: Cal)[2] approximates the energy needed to increase the temperature of 1 kilogram of water by 1 °C. This is exactly 1,000 small calories or about 4.2 kilojoules. It is also called the nutritionist’s calorie”

    Always enjoy reading this bog.. :)

    So we are back to a calorie is a calorie… Give me a fcuking break. I’ll just eat 2500 cals of sugar/enriched white flour muffins and the odd frozen margine/whey powder mixed popcicle – good carb/fat/protein % ?

    Yes, I like the whole clean food bandwagon – makes sense and seems fairly innoscent and a good start for anyone. I like the part where each individual needs to be their own experiemt (i have been for the last 14 months)

    Leptin and Insulin and a host of other hormones I’m afraid have a say aswell and the real thing called inflammation. Or has the bath been emptyed allready?

    Food reward? I haven’t bought into this Jedi mid trick as yet

    But PLEASE – lets not say a calorie is a calorie.

    • “lets not say a calorie is a calorie.”

      Those saying it are only saying it in the context of WEIGHT loss. partitioning to fat, lean, and water is different (as shown in metabolic ward studies where weight loss is the same by LC loses more fat and retains more lean). And nutrition profiles are different.

      So if that’s the admission you were looking for, you got it.

  12. I’m generally aware of how many calories I’ve consumed at any time of the day but then I am also generally aware, within a few dollars, of how much is in my checking accounts and investment accounts, or what my unpaid monthly bills are going to amount to … apparently that sort of stuff is pretty challenging for some people.

    Calories are a nifty way to keep track of what you’re consuming .. you could as an alternative keep track of the gross weight of your food but that doesn’t tell you much, eating 3.5 pounds of food in a given day means what?

  13. I’ve written this before, I think of Jimmy Moore as a journalist.

    Yeah, he’s also an advocate with a POV, but he’s open to all sorts of viewpoints, and I’ve never heard him badger people because he disagrees with them, as opposed to mainstream journalists. I prefer journalists who openly state their position as opposed to journalists who pretend to be neutral, for example all the vegan/vegetarian nutrition journalists with jobs in the mainstream rags who write about the evils of meat and SFAs. How about we all just lay our biases on the table instead of pretending some sort of bullshit neutrality.

    As far as the religious aspect goes, I don’t have a problem with that, I’ve never seen Jimmy being annoying about it. If he wants to interview vegans or people who have a biblical interpretation then I’m going to skip it, but I don’t feel threatened or pissed off in any way.

    My comment on the “There’s no such thing as a paleo diet” interview:

    I’m sort of a militant atheist, and I’ll probably skip this interview as much as because I don’t have time to keep up as to the fact that a biblical interpretation doesn’t interest me. But I certainly don’t find it offensive. Throw all the viewpoints out there and let people decide for themselves. You do a great job of this.

    I still agree with this (except I’m not actually a militant atheist at all these days). When people start to call for censorship or “unity” that’s what gives me the willies. Hey, let’s all shun Jimmy because he interviewed a religious nut and because all us kool kids know that LC is bullshit. Oh and he makes a living at this therefore he is some sort of evil capitalist pig who can’t be trusted. I don’t buy into any of that.

    • Amen, Sean.

    • I don’t know if it the religious aspect per se, but the rejection of science that it entails is troubling for some people. Jimmy believes the earth is only 6000 years and does not believe in evolution (while now embracing Paleo). This might not be the best kind of person to rationally approach science debates. I heard that Jimmy is going to mediate the safe starch debate at the next AHS.

      I also don’t think it is too off-base to question motives when someone who doesn’t believe in evolution wants to jump on the Paleo bandwagon and claim that his low-carb empire belongs under the same umbrella.

      Jimmy might be a really great journalist (though I will disagree with this based upon the whole safe starch blog thing) and all and is trying to do what is right, but I think these are fair and legitimate concerns for some people to have.

      • I didn’t find it troubling when Jimmy interviewed Mr 30 bananas, but perhaps we have a different viewpoint of what “rejection of science” entails.

        I’m sure you are intelligent enough to define what is real science and what is bullshit. I happen to think people ought to be allowed to choose for themselves.

        When I hear about “fair and legitimate concerns” my bullshit meter gets pegged to ten. Why not let people choose for themselves what they consider “fair and legitimate”?

      • “but I think these are fair and legitimate concerns for some people to have.”

        Okay, damnit, I think you have a legitimate point there.

      • I don’t care who he interviews, but I don’t think it does the Ancestral movement any favors to have him mediating safe starch debates or insisting that his low-carb empire is part of the ancestral umbrella or deciding who the “experts” are. I believe Dr. Jack Kruse (one of the biggest jokes in all of the paleo/ancestral movement) is going to be part of the safe starch debate at AHS12 at Jimmy’s invitation.

        So a young earth Creationist that doesn’t believe in evolution is bringing a scientific nutjob to AHS to debate sciencey stuff. Sweet. The shamans and homeopaths will be coming next.

        Just as I don’t like the idea of young earth Creationists deciding science curricula at my children’s school, I don’t like the idea of them and their nutjob friends becoming too prominent in a movement that is supposed to be about rational and scientific approaches to diet and health.

        I think this is what many of the “kool kids” are concerned about, and Jimmy seems to be the one cheerleading quacks like Kruse into “expert” status and helping to drain much of the science out of the movement.

      • “The shamans and homeopaths will be coming next.”

        I guess you missed that Don Matesz presented last year. :)

        Alright, cheap shot acknowledged.

      • “Hey you quacks, get off my Paleo lawn!”

        I’ve been concerned about shamans and homeopaths from day 1. But what we have here is a collision of folks with different goals. I’ve been able to identify at least four: 1. folks wanting to lose weight, 2. folks trying to heal medical issues, 3. folks trying to lean out/performance concerns, and 4. folks seeking optimal diet for perceived health benefits. Because of these different goals, you’re going to get a messy stew of ideas and influences.

        It doesn’t offend me that Jack Kruse is invited to the conferences I’m attending this year. My Paleo ego is not so fragile that I can’t hear what he has to say and discard what I don’t want and take what I do. It’s all buyer beware out there. Besides, there’s anecdotal evidence building that people are experiencing some benefits from Kruse’s ideas. That makes it worthy of looking into, even though I plan not to.

        But I gotta tell ya, homeopaths have been on this real food as medicine kick for awhile and they still outnumber “real” doctors who prescribe a real-foods diet. Nothing is settled in the Paleosphere and nobody owns it.

      • “My Paleo ego is not so fragile that I can’t hear what he has to say and discard what I don’t want and take what I do.”

        I think the “movement” is in trouble though when Kruse was the third most popular presenter at the recent Paleo Summit. It boggles my mind. Half the words that come out of his mouth are nonsense.

        Where do you draw the line? My Paleo ego can discard shaman and homeopaths and Kruse, but I still don’t want them spreading their nonsense as part of what Ancestral is all about.

        My ego can discard young earth Creationism, but if not for the Supreme Court it would be taught in many school districts in the US. People in this country have been presented with the “facts,” and in many cases the majority has decided that young earth Creationism is good science and that evolution is bad science.

      • “My ego can discard young earth Creationism, but if not for the Supreme Court it would be taught in many school districts in the US. People in this country have been presented with the “facts,” and in many cases the majority has decided that young earth Creationism is good science and that evolution is bad science.”

        My two Rat Terriers appear to be afraid of thunder. We’re animals, imbibed of fear. Other animals make millions off it. Millions. Perhaps I chose the wrong path and out to just be an economic predator, ’cause that’s how predation shakes out, now.

      • You make some good points, M.

        But I don’t think the problem with AHS is bringing in “nutjobs” like Jack Kruse or allowing Jimmy Moore to chair a safe starches panel. I think the bigger problem is that they rejected Dr Doug McGuff for his critical lecture and Mellisa McEwen for, I dunno, being a girl or something.

        I think paleo or ancestral health or whatever you want to call it is simply too young to decide, hey we need to winnow down these people. If for no other reason than to show that we are willing to acknowledge alternate viewpoints. We also come to the problem of how to do the winnowing. Go by credentials? Peer review? Those things failed miserably, and are still failing when it comes to obesity and the lipid hypothesis.

        AHS has already lost their credibility to a large extent, IMO, although that doesn’t mean I don’t have tons of respect for a lot, nay most, of the presenters.

        I don’t think Jimmy is “draining” the science out of the movement. The safe starch debate really gave Paul Jaminet a chance to explain his ideas, even if I do think it could have been handled a little bit better, it was ultimately good for anyone who wants to think for themselves.

        Whether or not Jimmy Moore believes the Earth is six thousand years old is irrelevant to me. By his actions, he’s a very moderate and nice guy who has interviewed thousands of people and never badgered them, AFAIK. He’s done a lot of good. As far as his advocacy of Kruse, I don’t know much about Kruse but from what little I’ve heard, it’s not good. So I grant you that endorsing someone who seems to be something of a quack is a black mark.

        However, when you start to judge people on their beliefs rather than their actions you are getting into thought crime territory. This is why I despise hate crime. If I beat up a little old lady because I wanted to steal her purse, that’s a normal crime, but if I beat her up because of her race or gender that’s a hate crime and I ought to have the book thrown at me.

      • “We also come to the problem of how to do the winnowing.”

        That is a big issue without an easy answer. A problem now though is when the science-oriented people do start trying to call BS on people and try to weed out the nutjobs, they get labeled “kool kids” and “cliques.” Should the kool kids not try to do something to dissuade the unwashed masses that Kruse is a fucking genius?

        “However, when you start to judge people on their beliefs rather than their actions you are getting into thought crime territory.”

        Again though, if someone is a Young Earth Creationist, maybe he is just not the type of person to be persuaded by science or rational arguments to begin with. It doesn’t mean he is a bad person, but it means he might not be a good choice for the mediator of scientific debates.

        Maybe someone who is so afraid of “safe starches” that he was unwilling to even self-experiment with some potato because his “medical experts” warned him of dire consequences, maybe this kind of guy shouldn’t be moderating a “safe starch” debate (especially when it is 3 medical doctors and a biased moderator against a single lone physicist. I know Paul Jaminet doesn’t care about perception and just worries about Truth, but that kind of thinking is what gets young earth Creationism taught in schools. It is what helps makes Kruse the 3rd most popular presenter at the Paleo Summit.)

      • That is a big issue without an easy answer. A problem now though is when the science-oriented people do start trying to call BS on people and try to weed out the nutjobs, they get labeled “kool kids” and “cliques.” Should the kool kids not try to do something to dissuade the unwashed masses that Kruse is a fucking genius?

        Hey the kool kids can do whatever they want. If a bunch of the sciencey folks in the paleosphere wants to call BS on Kruse, have at it. I doubt labeling them kool kids or saying it is a clique is going to invalidate their arguments or null their logic. And the fact is there are a lot of cliques and cliquish behavior. If the unwashed masses want to ignore these qualified critiques, then there’ really nothing to do about that, is there?

        Again though, if someone is a Young Earth Creationist, maybe he is just not the type of person to be persuaded by science or rational arguments to begin with. It doesn’t mean he is a bad person, but it means he might not be a good choice for the mediator of scientific debates.

        Granted. But this isn’t a meeting of the American Physical Society, this stuff is still much less settled than basic things in physics despite what many of the sciencey type people agree on, and the safe starch debate is something Jimmy really brought to the forefront when he managed to get so many big names to weigh in on the subject, even if it wasn’t handled in an ideal fashion.

        Maybe someone who is so afraid of “safe starches” that he was unwilling to even self-experiment with some potato because his “medical experts” warned him of dire consequences, maybe this kind of guy shouldn’t be moderating a “safe starch” debate (especially when it is 3 medical doctors and a biased moderator against a single lone physicist. I know Paul Jaminet doesn’t care about perception and just worries about Truth, but that kind of thinking is what gets young earth Creationism taught in schools. It is what helps makes Kruse the 3rd most popular presenter at the Paleo Summit.)

        Paul Jaminet also thinks that Truth is derived from God, he’s a devout Christian AFAIK, though I doubt he takes the Bible literally. I believe Chris Masterjohn is also. Both those guys are whip-smart on the subject of nutrition. The debate will be recorded and uploaded to the web I assume? Perhaps then we can judge how biased Jimmy acts in his moderation.

        I’m not sure what “kind of thinking” gets creationism taught in schools, is it the same kind of thinking that gets the lipid hypothesis taught and implemented in schools? Because that shit is way more ubiquitous and is causing way more damage than a few schools in the South teaching creationism. It is literally killing people. If Kruse was the 3rd most popular presenter at PS and he is actually full of shit (again, don’t know much about the guy but I’ll take your word for it) then them’s the breaks. People are going to act like sheep, nothing is going to change that. At least he’s not telling people to eat heart-healthy whole grains, right?

      • Looks like its time to ban Sean, for injecting a little too much sense, balance, thoughtfulness into the debate.

        Ban Sean. Ban Sean. Ban Sean.

      • Heh heh, thanks Richard. I do have my less balanced moments when I call Nigel a hysterical cunt. He’s promised to never let me live that down.

        Is it just me or has the tone and character of debate gotten more civil and thoughtful in general around these here parts lately? Is it time to hug it out?

      • “Is it the same kind of thinking that gets the lipid hypothesis taught and implemented in schools?”

        If more credible people had come out and called bullshit on in it at the time, maybe the lipid hypothesis (or creationism or whatever nonsense somebody wants to force upon us) would not have been.

        I don’t know if a guy that supports shooting people up with female pregnancy hormone and “changing your DNA with your thoughts” is really going to give much better advice in the long run than “eat whole grains.” (I think the battle against vegetable oil might be more important than against grains anyway. Not sure the low-carbers are going to be on that bandwagon, especially since one of Taubes’ inescapable conclusions was that all fats are healthy fats.)

      • Let’s not jump the gun, Sean. I’m sure things will return to just nasty, brutish and short enough soon enough.

      • AJ Wow says:

        “insisting that his low-carb empire is part of the ancestral umbrella”

        The Paleo- Ancesteral movement(Cordain was about it) was quite obscure until the likes of Richard, Robb Wolf, Sisson and of course DeVaney leading the charge had caused it to catch fire. And it caught fire under the low carb umbrella as much as anything, so Jimmy had every right to come in from that approach.

      • You’re right. Jimmy helped a lot. He saw early on that Paleo was a potential way to breath a bit of new life into LC and I not only don’t fault him for that, I recognize his foresight.

        I dunno, but I like to see all good and decent boats raised. Others can man the guns if they want against “encroachment, “but mine are pointed at CW and Vegans.

    • Sorry Sean, I had no idea that Jimmy Moore was a creationist. I have to admit I have never listened to any of his shows as I can;t get past the first few minutes. If a person believes that the world was created by a supernatural entity 6000 years ago everything he says from that point will have to be treated with utmost scrutiny. Creationists believe in something that is directly contradicted by all the evidence, it is contradicted by other forms of delusion from other cultures. The basis of belief is from a book which contradicts itself constantly and is known ot have been edited throughout history. Creationism is totally untenable and quite frankly astonishing in 2012. Does he believe in Noah’s ark?
      Secondly if you don’t believe in evolution for what reason would you try to ally yourself with a “paleo diet”

      • I think it’s quite troubling. At the very least it suggests a surprising lack of knowledge of genetics and anthropology.

      • I’ve no idea whether or not he’s a creationist either. I’ve corresponded with him and always made it clear that I’m an atheist. What does it matter what he believes in if he does a great job of being a journalist? Newton was also quite religious, probably a creationist, does that mean we should abandon calculus?

      • Hi Sean, would Newton be an atheist now? We don’t need to abandon calculus because or the theory of gravity because of they did not rely on his Christian belief being true.
        Yes I think it does matter if someone is a creationist because it means they can hold on to an irrational belief in the face of overwhelming evidence. Using the European timings the Paleolithic ended many thousands of years before the bible says the universe was created.
        I won’t go on as “m” has said it all really.
        I had no idea M.Mcewan’s talk had been rejected, I could kind of see why Doug McGuff’s was though I think it would have been fun.

      • Melissa didn’t put in for a presentation. She put in for a panel discussion on I believe self experimentation and it was to include her, me, Seth Roberts and someone else I believe. It’s on the waiting list in case a spot opens up but basically, they chose other panel proposals over hers/ours. Seth and I got the same “rejection” email she did.

        I put in for a 40 min presentation. It was accepted, but for 20 minutes.

      • thanks for that, Richard.

      • “Yes I think it does matter if someone is a creationist because it means they can hold on to an irrational belief in the face of overwhelming evidence.”

        Yes, good point. It’s a rather stupid false equivalence on my part since evolution didn’t even exist at the time of Newton.

        But Jimmy isn’t holding himself up as a scientist or even expert. Sure, he’s got his biases but he makes them clear from the outset which is better than mainstream journalists who pretend neutrality but all “know” that the lipid hypothesis is gospel along with AGW, the welfare state, and the power of unicorn farts. And in practice he is basically a really nice guy.

      • Okay I’m half convinced, I really agreed with a point you made about journalists “having” to decleare whether they are vegetarian or not when they write nutrition pieces. It is honest of Jimmy to declare his bias and belief system up front. I think the problem with many veggies is that they would say it isn’t a belief system.
        How many people would have read the China Study is they had known the author was a vegan? I wouldn’t read a book on evolution by a creationist why would I read a book on nutrition and disease by a vegan?

      • That’s something I always thought was cool about British newspapers and their open partisanship. And something I really dislike about the BBC and it’s much vaunted (especially by the BBC) alleged neutrality and objectivity. Ditto for the NY Times and the whole mainstream US press which also pretends neutrality.

        “I wouldn’t read a book on evolution by a creationist why would I read a book on nutrition and disease by a vegan?”

        Because you like to think for yourself? Because you have a rational mind that shies away from dogma masquerading as science? Yeah, I know, it was a rhetorical question.

      • Yes the “neutral” reporting on the BBC is one of the most widely believed lies ever. Anyone who really wants ot look at BBC neutrality only needs to look at Reith’s promises to parliment during the general strike.

  14. Wolfstriked says:

    Bringing up the”animals never count calories while also never getting obese” seems to overlook a certain something.They do not have access to the amount of food we have yr round.They try to get as fat as possible to survive the lean winters.If there are no winters to speak of then you need to remember that they actually have to hunt and forage daily for their food intake.Fruit/veggies get eaten and prey try their hardest not to be eaten.

    If you look into some of the European countries with paradox attached to them you will come to find that they practice portion control.This leads to better insulin management,smaller stomachs etc with corresponding increase in the deliciousness of the foods.I watch people to see this effect in action and its silly that we overlook it.Skinny people buy a bagel w/cream cheese and a coffee w/cream/sugar……heavier people buy a bagel with eggs/bacon and a larger coffee….obese people…….you never see them eat but take it from me at my heaviest we eat 2 breakfasts with ease.I would order 20dollars worth of Chinese food and eat it all myself.;)

    • Are you quoting me because I don’t recall saying that. What I do recall saying a number of times is that if the environment is suitable for their normal survival, animals are of whatever normal body comp they are. Yep, monkey’s fatten up on fruit when in season and bears make themselves obese type 2 diabetics (but then go to sleep for 5 months).

  15. Wolfstriked says:

    No Richard,it was a poster from a few before this one. I agree with you that nature wants to fatten up its inhabitants including humans.I have seen so many comments over the yrs of people saying this statement that animals self regulate their weight so I had to post it.From deer to fish I have seen comments.When you eat greens and some nuts you cant expect to get obese,same with fish…but in a fish tank they easily get obese from the constant trickle of food.Cows are another example with people claiming “they use corn to fatten up cattle”. Just think of how much grass it takes to equal the calorie content of pound of corn and you see corn is not the cause of our obesity epidemic.

    • “Just think of how much grass it takes to equal the calorie content of pound of corn and you see corn is not the cause of our obesity epidemic.”

      That doesn’t make any sense… corn is very energy dense compared to grass, cows are also basically zero carb animals as they digest the end products of grass fermentation as fats. They become obese because they are intaking massive amounts a form of energy they can’t process properly.

      Humans eating a ton of empty calories in the form of stripped down, damaged corn, wheat, damaged fats and sugars are the main causes of obesity…corn is just a part of it

      • Wolfstriked says:

        Thats exactly what I meant.When someone says carbs are the devil,just look at what they feed cows to fatten them up….corn,I always cringe. Well no duh when grass is very low calorie and has the cow walking around fields to eat it compared to feed lot where they have high energy content corn its very simple to see why.I understand bovine digestion and they have a highly specific digestive tract.Its so complex that it even breaks down dead microbes and then strips the protein from them.This is digestion geared specifically towards one food source only.So what I should of said is that people should not use cows to show how corn is fattening.

      • Wolfstriked says:

        @John,Kwasnieski hs been saying starch mainly for decades.Bodybuilders use starch mainly since you see more pump(glycogen)when using starch compared to sugars.Reason is that half the sugar is fructose and so goes to liver where it is converted to fat(Lustig?) wherein starch goes to glycogen storage in muscles and liver.

  16. Wolfstriked says:

    “”and you see corn is not the cause of our obesity epidemic.”” LOL sorry

    actually corn is the cause of obesity if you overeat it due to making it super delicious.Very calorie dense food.

  17. As ever, Matt Metzgar makes good points:

  18. Margie says:

    Hi Richard,

    I’ve been aware of your site for awhile and an occasional reader, but these recent posts are quite interesting, particularly within the context of the larger “to carb or not” discussion that is wildly over taking the paleo/primal scene. I want to articulate some “back of the head” thoughts that have been brewing.

    I wonder about the interaction of change with current metabolic health. In the gym, we often talk about how the effect of repeating the same workout routine/exercise becomes less effective because the body adapts to it. The stress/adaptation response ceases, and so we not longer get stronger/faster, etc. Might this also apply to diet composition? Ie, if the body is accustomed to a particular diet when you radically alter it, the body has an extreme reaction. At least initially. Bodybuilders have built a whole method around that – eat very low cal 6 days of the week and have one day of enormous caloric overload. This supposedly induces a favorable metabolic environment for change.

    On a sort of separate tangent – in my own journey, I remember when I was much too thin, I would have fairly inspiring binges and not seem to gain weight. Yet now that I am a few pounds too heavy, I can’t seem to tolerate any excess. My activity level has been high throughout both times, though back then I was doing more CrossFit and now I do more powerlifting (and have far more muscle mass). I’ve always tended to eat lower carb since discovering paleo.

    Finally, there’s been continued reference to weight loss on one diet vs another, but not a huge focus on body composition. So, perhaps one diet is more ideal for overall weight loss, but it could be partially at the expense of losing muscle, which in my opinion, is not a positive.

    Forgive these somewhat disjointed thoughts – just wanted to offer a couple of burgeoning questions.

    • Margie:

      I generally agree. I have long said its probably not a great idea to do the same thing all the time so yea, vary the workouts, sprints now and then, hell, even some moderate cardio. Sleep 9 hours one night, 5 another and pull an all- nighter now and then. Minimize stree is your life where you can, but now and then, take on a stressful shot term project (like my book writing marathon).

      In terms of diet, perhaps not 200 grams every day, but 500 some days, zero some, VLC some and moderate some.

  19. Jeanie says:

    Hi Richard,
    So curious to know if you decided to take your blood sugar readings after all your high-starch meals. My DH and I decided to try that approach as well after doing VLC for quite a while. His BG readings indicated that he tolerated the sweet potatoes well, me, not so much. I’ve had to cut waaaay back to stay in an acceptable range. Same with bananas. Oh well, the fat is still coming off as long as I keep my CALORIES low enough. Yes, calories count!
    Loved the podcast. keep up the good work –
    Jeanie

  20. Jeanie says:

    Good question. That was what we were wondering, given all the contradictory information out in the blogosphere. We have been following the Chris Kresser 30-day Reset (pure paleo) and started reintroducting foods back in slowly. He recommends the site bloodsugar.com for the best information. There it was stated that fasting should be below 100, one hour after eating below 140 and 2 hours below 120. After 6 ounces of sweet potato, my one hour reading was 191! Husband was 125. 2 hours was 137, and finally after 3 hours I was at 89. I know that the test strips can be a bit off, and it is best to look at many days to see an average. But as soon as I cut back on bananas (1/2 med.) and sweet potato (2 ounces!), I was within range.
    Have you had much different results? Maybe you are like my husband and can handle them much better.

    • From what I understand, a low carb diet can cause higher glucose spikes than if you are eating a higher level of starch. If you just introduced some starches back in your diet, it may take a week or two for your body to get used to the higher starch levels. You may want to test it again in a week or two. Also, people who follow a very low carb diet often have a higher fasting glucose number (usually between 90-105).

      • I think you’re right about that, John.

      • Jeanie says:

        Hi John,
        Thanks, I’ve heard that before, too. Do you have any place you can refer me to that backs that up, or is it just anecdotal? My fasting BG this morning was 128. I only had 2 oz of sweet potato with chicken last night. I’m not exactly worried, just very puzzled.

  21. Jeanie says:

    Ooops, that website is bloodsugar101.com Sorry!!!

  22. Screen name (required) says:

    Another criticism of jimmy. Constantly talking about “carbage” than a minute later cuts to a commercial break about low-carb-soyOil-artificialsweetener-chemicalLaden Atkins bars, with only 4 NET carbs!

  23. I doubt it was coincidental that he suspended his n=1 experiments before getting to the Quest Bars. He’d already alienated enough sponsors.

  24. High and low are really frustrating terms what constitutes a low or high carb diet? Is it the dominant macronutirent? Is it related to the current government guidelines? Do the kitavans get 60% of their food from cultivated starches or 60% of their calories?

    • FrankG says:

      Great point Neal, there clearly is confusion, misunderstanding and dare I say, purposeful misrepresentation in this regard…

      when I read diet trials in the scientific literature it seems that they generally classify a diet based on the relative proportions of each macronutrient, as a percentage of total daily energy intake. So for example a diet with 55% of the energy/calories from carbohydrate would be classed as high-carb.

      But there do seem to be some who talk in terms of the “volume” of what they eat: for example there was a person recently commenting at Gary Taubes blog, who eats 90% carbs per day… I questioned this; as if it really were 90% of daily energy from carbohydrates, that would likely leave a person malnourished in the long term, with only had 10% left for both fat and protein. I suspected that what they really meant was that the bulk of what was eaten are foods generally considered to be carbohydrate (like fruit and veg) — without any regard for their fat and protein content.

      There is not much real whole food that is simply one macronutrient without including the others — even a steak can include carbohydrates in the form of glycogen — and that is not even looking at the multiple types of fats, proteins etc… (see Dr Kurt Harris’ series on “no such thing as a macronutrient”… http://www.archevore.com/panu-weblog/2011/1/29/there-is-no-such-thing-as-a-macronutrient-part-i-fats.html

      Again, there are some on a diabetic forum in the UK who like to eat “low carb, low fat, moderate protein and low calorie”… not quite sure how the math thing works on that either but I expect they are not really talking about the relative percentages of energy.

      There is also confusion about terms like “high fat” which I think has some picturing sitting on the couch with a spoon and a large tub of lard! Bearing in mind the difference in calories per gram, the math shows that: for someone eating around 2,500 calories per day, a substitution of 43 g of fat instead of 100g of carbs can be enough to change the diet from low-fat/high-carb to low-carb/high-fat. This could be as easy as not avoiding fat, eating full-fat versions of food, regular instead of lean ground, chicken with the skin still on, dab of butter on your veg etc… not major changes in my view, and in terms of volumes you could actually be eating less food. But of course (even for me) it can be hard to shake off the multiple decades of indoctrination concerning what those “arterycloggingsaturatedfats” will do to my blood vessels!

      I do think this lack of precision is a constant source of confusion on these blogs and is at least partly responsible for the antagonism so often evident.

      When we use poorly defined terms, we might have a clear idea of what we mean but the reader may have a completely different idea… other examples are “The Mediterranean Diet” — last time I looked, there are over a dozen countries in and round the Med, each with many regional differences in what they eat. Another example is “I eat a *moderate” diet — everything in balance”… that doesn’t really mean the same thing to everybody who reads it…. I maintain that my LCHF diet is moderate and well balanced for me.

      I see little if any disagreement that the quality of what we eat is significant: 100g of carbs from cola likely has a far different metabolic effect on a body than 100g of carbs from broccoli or sweet potato.

      Then again even talking in blanket terms about grams of carbs per day seems to ignore that 100g of carbs for a 6’6″, 220lb lumberjack is not the same as 100g of carbs for a 5’4″ 110lb librarian :-)

  25. One thing I’ve always found weird is why fruit generally seems to be accepted as good in the Low Carb community, but starchy vegetables like potatoes are bad. It seems weird, since most Low Carbers tend to agree that fructose is worse than glucose (at least that’s what I’ve noticed).

    Turns out, it wasn’t always this way. Here’s a quote from Dr. Atkin’s Diet Revolution (the first one, published in 1972) about some Carbohydrate research from the Brookhaven National Laboratory-

    “ONE CALORIE OF SUGAR APPARENTLY PRODUCES MORE FAT THAN ONE CALORIE OF STARCH (caps in the book). Feeding patients diets of alternately high sugar content and high starch content, the Brookhaven doctors found that the percentage of sugar converted to blood fat as a result of the sugar diet was two to five times greater than the percentage converted after the starch diet.”

    “What the Brookhaven research clearly suggests is startling: It means that a one ounce piece of fudge (113 calories) is two to five times as fattening as one hamburger roll (116 calories). It also means that piece of fruit (sugar), is less desirable for your diet than a baked potato, which is a starch.”

    The quote is from page 264. It kinda makes sense, given that we know fructose is turned into fat in the liver, while glucose goes to your bloodstream as blood sugar. But if we extrapolate the figures in the book, it would mean that eating 40 grams of carbohydrate from fruit would be roughly like eating 80-200 grams of carbohydrate from potato (at least in terms of weight or fat gain). Interesting, huh?

  26. Paul C says:

    100% effective digestion seems to always be a given when talking calorie intake. I know now that my digestion was compromised badly several years ago, and have gone through a process that I judge as healing of some sort, because now I can gain weight eating significantly less food while still being active.

    How anyone can study a group that has some with very effective digestion, some with very ineffective digestion, not knowing who is who, and perhaps even having some people change from one to the other during the study (due to viral illness perhaps), then coming to a general conclusion about the group with such wild differences sounds like a hopeless effort with meaningless results.

    A study would have to also analyze what comes out not just what goes in, to accurately know how many calories were digested. Does that happen?

  27. I do believe that calories count, but unfortunately in my case, unless I follow a VLC or ZC diet, I have insane carb cravings which make it nearly impossible for me to avoid binging on junk food. So even if calories are the real issue, I can only control calories if I control carbs.

    • Karen W. says:

      Exactly, Dave! I’ve never counted carbs or calories or whatever but have avoided carbs because of the impossible-to-fight cravings that are triggered by them. Now I’ve been given the idea that it may be only the ‘crap’ carbs that are the issue. I’m experimenting to find out if the banana/potato thing is a trigger or not. So far, they don’t appear to be but I want to see how it goes for a few more weeks. It seems to be the grains/sugars in processed foods that are the culprits.

      • Folks like you should stay away from addictive drugs. I think this is everything to do with chemical cravings etc. Someone should open a food addiction clinic.

  28. Another example of that the type of food does matter, but NOT the carbs:
    “Mexicans prove that calories have nothing to do with it – it’s processed food that puts on the pounds

    Good news for people who don’t want to spend their lives in the gym in order to burn off the fat – they’re wasting their time. Putting on weight is more to do with what you eat than how much, as researchers have demonstrated this week.
    The real cause of weight gain and obesity is the Western diet of processed foods and drinks. To prove the point, researchers from the University of South Carolina compared the lifestyles and health profiles of first-generation and second-generation Mexicans now living in the USA. The second-generation Mexicans – who had adopted the standard American diet of fast and processed foods and sugared drinks – were 2.5 times more likely to be obese than first-generation Mexicans, who were still eating their traditional diet of corn, beans, meat, vegetables and fruits.
    The study looked at the lives of 2,300 second-generation Mexicans aged between 12 and 19 years. They had all turned their backs on their traditional diets, and instead were eating processed foods high in saturated fat and sodium, and drinking sweetened beverages.
    The results are yet another example to demonstrate that the standard calorie-intake model for weight gain and loss is simplistic.
    (Source: Journal of Nutrition, 2012; 142: 298-305).”
    I read this on: http://www.wddty.com/mexicans-prove-that-calories-have-nothing-to-do-with-it-it-s-processed-food-that-puts-on-the-pounds.html (needed: harmless registration)

    • My wife is Mexican and so this is close to heart. She never did super well on my high fat, ice age Euro diet. She grew up on rice, beans, tortillas and cheap meats, like lots of liver and menudo, and she still loves both.

      She put on pounds over the years, after initially doing OK, plus, sleep was a problem, a HUGE problem. Well, guess what? Last two weeks with my starch increase (I’m the cook), she sleeps through the night and has lost 5 pounds,

      • I’ll probably get shit for this, but I am starting to think there may be something to the theory of blood type diets. Being that your blood type usually shows or follows where your ancestry is from.

        I LOVE red meat and a fatty marbled steak. However, every time I eat one, I feel like it sits in my belly like lead. I can tell my body is having a hard time digesting it. I am a blood type A. When I looked it up, the blood type theory tells me that blood type has a hard time digesting meats. I should stick to fish.

        I have done my own, unscientific research; meaning I asked my friends and family what their blood types are and what foods do and don’t sit well with them.

        It seems like type O’s really thrive on the meats. Maybe this too would also explain why even though going Veg seems stupid and unnatural, there are some people who are actually thriving on it.

        Anyway, Im not going whole hog into the thing, but just checking some of the info online about better foods for my blood type, I am in the midst of doing more self experimentation.

        I wonder if you are perhaps a O and your wife maybe an A or B.

        I know…. I know…….. I expect all of you to roll your eyes.

      • I think to the extent anyone points out that the blood type thing is ridiculous, it is because it is ridiculous.

      • I’m A positive and I can put down a pound or two of meat and feel euphoric. Especially pork.

        Blood type is pseudoscience bullshit. Dismiss it.

    • FrankG says:

      Here is the abstract… http://jn.nutrition.org/content/142/2/298.abstract

      “Both second and third generation adolescents consumed less fruit, whole fruit, vegetables, grains, and meats but more sweetened beverages, whole grains, saturated fat, sodium, oil, and energy from discretionary foods.”

      So how do you read that as “NOT the carbs”? Repeat this experiment without the sweetened beverages, the whole grains or the portion of the “energy from discretionary foods” that comes from sugar and refined starches and maybe you have a point.

      I agree that it is the type of food which is the problem — real whole food is preferable to processed food. I just don’t see that processed food is not all about sugars and refined starches (poor quality carbs)… yes fat and salt are added to the mix, but can you list some high reward foods that are just fat and salt without any sugar or refined starches?

      • FrankG says:

        Just to add that I think we can all list several high reward foods and drinks which are just sugar and/or refined starches without any fat or salt.

      • “Just to add that I think we can all list several high reward foods and drinks which are just sugar and/or refined starches without any fat or salt.”

        Already mentioned sugar drinks too. So, is this an attempt, Frank, to make it seem as though I didn’t say things I did and “win”

        Thanks though. With every comment, you are convincing me more and more how bankrupt LC is-which is a shame, because I agree it’s effective.

        It’s just lousy in terms of the science. It’s only going to get worse for you, but knock yourself out.

      • Of course it’s not carbs: the traditional Mexicans ate apparently: corn, beans, vegetables and fruits.
        Those are carbs, aren’t they?
        The point is that the second and third generation ate *processed* carbs: “processed foods high in saturated fat and sodium, and drinking sweetened beverages”

      • FrankG says:

        Exactly as I keep saying, it is all about the quantity and the quality of the carbs… don’t you see how much easier it is to eat/drink a larger quantity of carbs when they are processed/refined?

        Does anyone really think that any amount of carbs even from real whole foods are unhealthy? Is that really the position being taken here that someone (Gary Taubes?) has stated that if you eat any carbs at all you will get fat? And because some people evidently can eat some carbs without getting fat then he is full of BS? Seriously?

        It is interesting because from the very first article of his that I read, through his on-line presentations and then his books I have never been under the misapprehension that he is saying all carbs are bad for everyone. It has always been about the quantity and the quality — 100g of carbs from cola is very different than 100g of carbs from broccoli… eating broccoli has not caused our current obesity epidemic.

        Can you list some high reward *processed* foods that are just fat and salt without any sugar or refined starches? Now how about high reward processed foods without any fat or salt?

      • gallier2 says:

        Candy, marshmallows, sorbet (water ice), Götterspeise (Jello), rice pudding are typical things which I have problems to stop with.

      • “So how do you read that as “NOT the carbs”?”

        Easy. ad libitum. I’ve already acknowledged this, way back. Can you not be honest, or what?

  29. Two things for which I’ll give Jimmy credit:

    1. At one point he lost 180 pounds.
    2. He figured out how to make a living off the internet.

    Other than that … he’s still the fat kid that wants everyone to like him and is reveling in his current status as the Oprah of the low-carb world, but he’s a hypocrite. His website is his sole source of income and he will fight to the death to protect it, even when it makes him look like an idiot. The whole Kimkins situation showed his true colors. He’s obviously realized since then that you catch more flies with honey than vinegar, because he was downright nasty to people when that whole thing was going on, and, much like Rush Limbaugh, he came up with an “apology” only after people threatened to boycott his sponsors. At least now he’s pretty much taken everything personal down and now his blog entries are just about who’s on the podcast next. I believe he did start the site out of good intentions, but you know where those pave the road to …

  30. Lynn123 says:

    I’m just thrilled to find out I’m not the only person Jimmy has banned. Getting banned really hurt my feelings, cause I was a big fan of his.

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