Richard Nikoley has a “Low Body Temperature” and “Edema?” You be the judge.

This is a pain to have to do this but I feel a bit of an obligation. Back in April ’09, nearly a year ago, some guy popped up in comments at Peter’s Hyperlipid blog promoting something he and [redacted] of [link deleted] were calling a "High Everything Diet." Basically, the idea is to jump start or improve metabolic function through a pretty high caloric intake, with plenty of carbs. After some time watching this assault, I did a post about the whole thing.

I really encourage you to read that first, but here’s a key excerpt.

HED: High Everything Diet (If eating garbage is your problem, just eat more of it)

I’ve said before that I don’t think carbohydrate is the primary problem (for those without type 2 or borderline, or obese), and the Kitavans and other H-G groups seem to prove that. In that regard, this HED does seem to eliminate at least some of what might destroy a high-carb munching Kitavan’s health, i.e., refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, processed vegetable oils (HEDers seem also not too fond of omega-3 PUFA — the Ray Peat influence) and trans fatty-acids.

He has also posted that lots of the low-carbers ignore the Kitavans, which is true. I don’t think that’s the case for all the paleo-like eaters, and certainly not true for me, as I’ve often written that healthful diets exist from equator to arctic circle, from high carb intake (Kitavans, Kuna and others — mostly from starch) to virtually zero carb (Inuit).

What I think is of far more importance is to find the diet or life way that works for you. First, begin with a principle: Real Food and nothing but Real Food. Next, attempt to determine where your genetic ancestry evolved in the last 50,000 years since coming out of Africa. Did your ancestors evolve in tropical regions with plenty of starches and fruits available year round, in regions with limited starches and fruits only seasonally, or with pretty much nothing but meat and animal fat most of the time?

Start there and go with how you feel as your first and primary authority. It’s a process. There is great variability, so you may be more adaptable to one macronutrient mix than another, or, it may not make much of a difference. Some are going to feel better on high carb, and some on zero carb, and some in-between.

But never forget the Real Food principle. That’s a safe haven and you just can’t go wrong.

So HED was an intriguing idea, but the guy was promoting the eating of lots of junk, like bean burritos from Taco Bell, pizzas, and so on. I’ll remind everyone again. I had two gum surgeries in 2000. They were rotting away. I had been on OTC allergy meds since teenage years and prescription ones since college. While in France I even did the scratch tests and undertook two years of increasing strength subcutaneous injections of allergens to stimulate the immune system, as I understand it. Unfortunately, that was paid for and administered by the French navy and when I left, so ended the treatment. It seemed somewhat beneficial but I was very soon back on the meds.

Fast forward to 2008, after more than a year of being off grains and when I had skipped not only one, but three successive quarterly hygienist appointments at the dentist. I hadn’t been in a year, and not only did they find no advancement of my gum disease, it had actually reversed to readings even better than the early 90’s. Oh, and I hadn’t taken an allergy pill or nasal spray for months, and I still haven’t.

Fast forward to a month or so ago when I began seeing Matt Stone show up in comments here and there. One thing to another and I thought it would be a good idea to pay attention. We’ve tweeted each other back & forth a bit and agree that we agree far more than we disagree. That hasn’t changed. I’ve made my readers aware of his work, he has reciprocated. Fine & dandy.

But this, a comment posted on Diana Hsieh’s blog, is simply an outrage that I will not tolerate from anyone (emphasis added).

I’ve studied this as thoroughly as anyone. I actually believe that low-carb diets in general ameliorate one of the symptoms of a low-metabolism, which is insulin resistance. Seems that the body’s natural response to a low metabolism is triggering fat storage. But, ironically, a low-carb diet is counterproductive for actually healing the core of the condition. This is why guys like Richard and jimmy moore have low body temperatures and corresponding health problems. You can even see the edema in Nikoley’s photos – in the cheeks and eyes.

He is absolutely full of shit and nobody could be fuller of it.

  1. I am not particularly low carb and have not been in quite some time, yet I continue to lose fat slowly, about 1/2 pound per month, now. I did use VLC primarily to lose the weight. I still IF and consider it an important health benefit.
  2. I don’t have "low body temperatures" and I challenge anyone to show me where I have indicated any such thing. I have indicated simply that I had cold hands & feet, sometimes (those aren’t core, last time I checked). A bit of iodine fixed that in a few days.
  3. I was diagnosed with a hypothyroid in 2000, seven years before going paleo and was on synthetic T4 through that whole period of gaining about 35 pounds (from 200 – 235, now 175).
  4. The hypothyroid is the only health problem that has persisted since going paleo. What has improved is that my inflammation markers like CRP are rock bottom, I no longer have the puffy, itchy skin I used to, I lost 60 pounds, am 300% stronger, took BP from 160/100 to normal levels with no meds, got off the GURD meds I’d been on since 2000 (I was a big Tums gobbler for years prior).

Most importantly, I cured the one thing most important of all: Hunger. Matt seems to think that body temperature, specifically low body temperature, is the Holy Grail for solving all health problems. Maybe he’s right; I honestly don’t know. But, you can talk body temperature all you want, and if you’re chronically hungry all the time you’re not going to make it. And BTW, if you think you know what your core body temperature really is, you’re probably fooling yourself:

Measurement method – Normal temperature range

Rectal 36.6°C to 38°C (97.9°F to 100.4°F)

Ear 35.8°C to 38°C (96.4°F to 100.4°F)

Oral 35.5°C to 37.5°C (95.9°F to 99.5°F)

Axillary 34.7°C to 37.3°C (94.5°F to 99.1°F)

Those are some pretty damn large ranges and some of you are out there talking about changes in tenths of degrees… And on top of that, how do we know normal is necessarily 98.6F? Has anyone done readings on wild humans? But as in diet and other health factors…as in enormous differences in vitamin D absorption, tolerance to toxins like alcohol, cholesterol levels and a host of other things, I suspect that there’s some range of body temperature that’s normal for most people and that probably even those ranges can vary by individual.

So, now & finally, on to "edema." That is so absurdly ridiculous; no, effing stupid — and downright rude — that I’m not even going to address it except to post some recent photos and comparisons for you all to judge for yourselves (and perhaps to weigh this when next Matt Stone comes around with his various assertions).

2004 trip to Hawaii and last September when my tan was still decent
Richard Nikoley Comparison
Here’s a face shot from the same trip and right now, in my office, and my tan has left me
From a late September ’09 camping trip. Oh, look at that health plagued poor guy. Oh, Matt Stone-san, can you please come to my rescue?
What a picture of poor health. I need help!

Can someone please help me???

Memberships are $10 monthly, $20 quarterly, or $65 annually. The cost of two premium coffees per month. Every membership helps finance the travel to write, photo, and film from interesting places and share the experiences with you.


  1. Jimmy Moore on February 4, 2010 at 15:42

    LOL! Yes, Richard, you look like you’re about to keel over at any moment! HA! By the way, I interviewed Matt Stone for my podcast which will air in a couple of months. He’s an interesting one to say the least.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 16:26


      Well I suspect that one measure of success — meaning you’re on the right track — is that you subject yourself to potshots. I know you know. You can say 1,000 things right on, do 20 awesome podcasts in a row — for free — and you eat a low-carb bagel and it’s an “oh-shit” that cancels a thousands ‘attaboys.

      I agree that Matt is intelligent, creative, hard working, interesting and worth paying attention to.

      But now I have to question his base motives in reaching out to me as he did. It was a recent post on Mussaman curry, of all things. At any rate, I’ll continue to listen to what he has to say, but I’m not going to promote any of it until I get a sense that he’s not trying to be everyone’s MD.

    • PaleoDoc on February 5, 2010 at 08:20

      The easiest way Matt can start making real money off his blog is by diagnosing patients online via webcam. Here the diagnosis is unequvocal: hypothyroidism with periorbital edema. A classic case, just like here:

      or here:
      Except that this is hyper, not hypo. Does it matter?
      Richard, don’t be naughty, eat your porridge.

      I have never looked at temperature measuremets, their sensitivity and specificity, ROC curves (something the Navy knows a lot about), etc, though I do remeber that there was one study demonstrating that mothers are better than thermometers in judging child’s health.

      Speculating, I imagine that health is not so much about constant temperature, but about ability to adapt to environment. In the Paleo times, clothes were not always avaialable often were not necessary. Undoubtedly our ancestors were exposed to temperature variations quite often, particularily cold, as hot showers were not invented yet. Most certainly body temperature fluctuated, even if it adjusted quite quicky.

      But Richard’s case made me think. Perhaps hypothyroidism in the Paleo tribe, if present, can be remedied by frequent cold showers or cryo chamber? Cold stimulates thyroid gland; indeed this is how it stimulates metabolism to generate heat short term (longer term perhaps heat conservation would set in). Sauna might be worth considering as well, though hardly Paleo. I stick to cold showers.

  2. Karen on February 4, 2010 at 15:46

    I wondered when you were going to respond to Matt’s comment. It was very inappropriate and obviously self-serving.

  3. Katelyn on February 4, 2010 at 15:52

    Don’t worry, Rich, Matt just has carb-disease. Wait in a few years until he gets diabetes or some other ailment related to junk and carbs. I’m thriving on ZC and don’t worry at all about hypothyroidism or what have you. I love never being hungry, eating fatty meat and having so much freakin’ energy to lift that my weights at the gym have gone up, and eating only once in the evening. Your paleo WOE with high fat and protein is much healthier than what he is doing, even with your minimal carbs.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 16:29

      Well I’m not going to entertain the notion that Matt has been taken over by aliens (carbs), but I get your sentiment, Katelyn.

      And I’m glad you’re thriving on ZC. That’s what it’s about, every individual taking responsibility and figuring it out over a long stretch of time. And I think virtually everyone is fully capable of doing it.

  4. Rick on February 4, 2010 at 15:56

    I follow Matt’s blog. He’s a pretty intelligent guy. However I think he has a product and an agenda to push. It’s a shame he chose this method to do so.

  5. Alex on February 4, 2010 at 16:29

    If you don’t already know that Omega 6 veggie oil and sugar are bad for health, Matt’s blog is a good place to go to learn that. Other than that, I find his corner of cyberspace devoid of useful information.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 16:33


      Well, we certainly know it over in this corner (it goes with the paleo territory). And I know you know that.

      I think he ought to stop trying to be such an almighty authority on all things health, focus on the really bad (like the morons on the MSM and white coats on the pay), and then use his own experience and obvious expertise to help guide people to their own lifestyle-dietary bliss, whatever it may be. But it’s probably going to involve real food.

      Eat real food, not too much, mostly animal fat & meat.

  6. Jimbeaux on February 4, 2010 at 16:36

    Matt Stone is annoying. He pops up in nearly ever blog I read in the comments section to promote his 180 degree health blog either directly or indirectly (surprise! You can buy his books!). Starting to get the cheese factor from him. This pushed me over the edge.

  7. CJane on February 4, 2010 at 16:46

    I’ve been a reader of your blog for some time, and I follow MDA, though I have never commented either place…until now. I recently had a go-round with Matt Stone on Twitter (see it at after he followed me and I took a look at his site and told him he hadn’t a clue what he was talking about. He proceeded to attempt to “wow” me with his vocabulary (just because he knows the term “postprandial glucose” I guess I’m supposed to take his advice without question). He ticked me off a bit (okay, a lot) with his condescending attitude, and our exchange prompted me to make this post: . You just can’t argue with real results. He can bite me, though it probably wouldn’t agree with him because I’m not the carb filled foods he loves so much.

  8. Suzan on February 4, 2010 at 17:16

    Wow, what a brilliant diagnosis from someone who looks at photos on the internet! LOL. You just gotta shake your head and laugh cynically that someone could be so ignorant.

    BTW, I am very grateful that you posted info on your gum disease and the improvement. I went to the dentist today, and learned that I must have periodontal surgery (again) very soon. Now that I am on a Primal eating plan, I am hoping it will be my LAST gum surgery. Ever.

  9. Nigel on February 4, 2010 at 17:20

    One day, Matt will work out that we’re all different. Probably not today, though. :-D

    • Alex on February 4, 2010 at 17:39

      No, not today. For the time being, he can’t hear anyone else over the sound of how awesome he thinks he is.

  10. Jeanie Campbell on February 4, 2010 at 17:41

    Ditto to all of the above, Richard. You look the picture of health! I was annoyed by Matt and his obvious sales pitches. I stopped following him on Twitter. I really appreciate your view that everyone has to follow their own success. My dh and I have ours, VLC, lots of meat, fat and veggies, and all is right with the world (and our triglycerides!). Also big users of our SVS, and can’t wait to wear our Five Fingers when the weather gets a little warmer here in Northern Colorado (couldn’t help but see yours in your picture). Now – when do we get to hear about Colpo???

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 18:12

      Colpo is soon. I debated doing both at once, but I’ve got to treat that differently, though in light of his recent success in getting a German publisher, perhaps it’s more similar than different.

      Mostly, this was just more personal.

      • Nigel on February 5, 2010 at 02:00

        It’s not a row over “a calorie is a calorie for weight gain/loss” by any chance?
        I’m still wading through GCBC so that I can argue biochemistry with Taubes. However, I’m having some problems at the moment which need attending to urgently (details in blog).

  11. Silverbenz on February 4, 2010 at 18:02

    Way before I started on the paleo path I had cold hands and feet constantly.

    On another note, though I haven’t read Matt Stone’s blog or any of his comments I can still understand his rationale. Putting aside the temptation to tread a follow-the-money trajectory for a moment, I have to say he sounds like someone who passionately believes that what they’re doing is right – for everyone, or at least the vast majority. This is not dissimilar to yourself, Richard, and I’m surmising this is one of the reasons his comments have pissed you off so royally.

    If he feels that low-carb/no-carb could be hurting people, and he can back that up, and he has the balls to speak out about it then really all he’s doing is facilitating good science. Any principle that can be held up to the light of scrutiny without crumbling should be strengthened by the experience. His method is a little obviously self-promotional, but you, and your supporters/readers (myself included) can take the hit on the chin without any real damage. If he manages to sway a number of readers to his way of thinking it’ll probably be temporary anyway (until they put on weight or sicken), and it means that, for whatever reason, they weren’t quite committed to a paleo-style ideology yet in any case (What?@#$ No more PIZZA!!!!). They’ll be back eventually. When they really want to get healthy/lean.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 18:15

      “This is not dissimilar to yourself, Richard”

      You’re dead wrong there, Siverbenz.

      I have but a single prescription: eat real food. If you need to loose weight and/or are diabetic, one absolutely ought to try low carb as a starting point (and maybe you can up them later).

      Matt seem intent on showing people — IN THE FACE OF THEIR OBVIOUS RESULTS — that they are wrong and he, sitting at a computer in dumbfuck, is right (and he can diagnose them by photo).

      That said, I agree that low-carb might be non-optimal for some people, and who knows, maybe most, at least long terms. My point is that he does not know that for any individual, anymore than you or I do. So, he’s a data point, a valid one. He;s trying to be far more, and that’s myt complaint.

      Plus he’s a rude fucker, in wrong context. I love being a rude fucker, and I am. but I always know my place.

  12. Michael on February 4, 2010 at 18:04

    Richard – Ah, so this is what you were referring to on twitter. I had no idea what you were talking about and looked at both twitter sites and still couldn’t figure it out. Now I know. I hope you two work it out. Honestly, I do.


    Don’t worry, Rich, Matt just has carb-disease. Wait in a few years until he gets diabetes or some other ailment related to junk and carbs.

    Don’t confuse Bruce K with Matt. The large amounts of garbage eating can be attributed to Bruce. IIRC Matt did put some public distance on his blog between him and Bruce (as did other advocates of HED), although I think it was mostly because he thought Bruce got temporarily out of hand. Anyway, he can set that issue straight if he chooses to respond to this post.

    I know Bruce tried to call me out on a yahoo group we share. It was entertaining and rather silly.

    On another note, unless you meant junk carbs only, I would like to see what evidence you have that carbs per se cause diabetes or other diseases.

    Your paleo WOE with high fat and protein is much healthier than what he is doing, even with your minimal carbs.

    While I understand why you might want to perceive it that way, Richard is no longer on a minimal carb diet (not even close), if I understand his posts correctly. Even if he is, he openly acknowledges that paleo can incorporate a high carb WOE. He even mentions it in the above post.


    I follow Matt’s blog. He’s a pretty intelligent guy. However I think he has a product and an agenda to push. It’s a shame he chose this method to do so.

    Yeah his blog and his book(s). He wants to make a living at what he does. I don’t see a problem with that anymore than I see a problem with Jimmy Moore (who does make a living from his blog) making money off low-carb stuff I would never buy in a million years, or Richard making (hopefully) a lot of money off his upcoming book.

    Making money off products and books doesn’t mean you have some surreptitious agenda.


    Matt Stone is annoying. He pops up in nearly ever blog I read in the comments section to promote his 180 degree health blog either directly or indirectly (surprise! You can buy his books!). Starting to get the cheese factor from him. This pushed me over the edge.

    One could easily argue that commenting around the web when you have a blog is a way to promote your blog indirectly. It’s a nice strategy actually provided you have something intelligent and meaningful to add to the conversation. I have seen Richard in many places and I know people who discovered him because of his comments elsewhere. I am a writer and I can tell you most writers don’t want to write to a very small audience if it can be avoided. My guess is that he not only comments on the blogs you read, but probably many you don’t.

    So I am a little dismayed at the comments about books and commenting on others blog as if that somehow is discrediting to a person’s message. I hope not. I’m looking forward to reading Richard’s book when it comes out.

    There is an issue here between Richard and Matt but it appears to have nothing to do with carbs per se, books to sell, comments on blogs other than your own, or other tangential stuff.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 4, 2010 at 18:20

      Pretty good take Michael.

      I agree that one ought to promote by adding value here and there, and comments are a good way to do that. I try to be circumspect about doing that, and above all intermittent. If you do it All THE TIME, people are going to take you ONLY by self promotion. Basically, I like to comment when I feel I can add something from personal experience that I’ve blogged about, and not something I “know” from research I’ve read — though there are exceptions –vitamin D and K2 and cholesterol being chief.

      I don’t begrudge Matt an income. But he doesn’t get to make it by pretending he’s my long lost savior. You know what I think about that! :)

      • Michael on February 4, 2010 at 18:41

        I don’t begrudge Matt an income. But he doesn’t get to make it by pretending he’s my long lost savior. You know what I think about that! :-)

        LOL! That is too funny. Yup, certainly do. :-)

    • Rick on February 4, 2010 at 22:07

      “I follow Matt’s blog. He’s a pretty intelligent guy. However I think he has a product and an agenda to push. It’s a shame he chose this method to do so.”

      Hey, all the power to Matt if he makes money. I have no issues with that either. My issue was with his method in proving his point (That being the comment he wrote about rnikoley)

  13. Don Matesz on February 4, 2010 at 18:20


    Excellent point about the body temperature. People are using numbers as gods, worshipping 98.6 as if someone proved that you have to have exactly that temperature to be human.

    Its like saying that a size 10 shoe is ideal, so we should cut down larger feet and enlarge others.

    Its the same insanity that has everyone freaked out if their lipoproteins aren’t “ideal.”

    Its the tyranny of Platonic forms. A real disease of the mind.

    People vary within a range in every measurable characteristic. Including temperature.

    BTW, lower temperature (induced by caloric restriction) is actually associated with longer lifespan and less disease. Burn hot, burn out fast. Think inflammation.

    • Michael on February 4, 2010 at 18:47

      BTW, lower temperature (induced by caloric restriction) is actually associated with longer lifespan and less disease. Burn hot, burn out fast. Think inflammation.

      Caloric restriction? If you mean CR as a lifestyle rather than occasional IF they can have it. As I noted in my recent article Reach For A Lucky Rather Than A Sweet some forms of life extension in my opinion just aren’t worth it.

      • Don Matesz on February 4, 2010 at 18:55

        I don’t advocate caloric restriction, I explained why in several posts on my blog, including Intermittent Fasting Prolongs Life….

        Here I only point out that caloricially restricted animals have lower temperatures and less, not more, chronic disease, contradicting Stone’s claim that high temperatures are the key to health.

      • Michael on February 4, 2010 at 21:55

        I don’t advocate caloric restriction, I explained why in several posts on my blog, including Intermittent Fasting Prolongs Life….

        Whew! Thank goodness. :-) But even if you did it wouldn’t matter as I was only pointing out my personal distaste for that approach, no matter how well it “works”.

        Here I only point out that caloricially restricted animals have lower temperatures and less, not more, chronic disease, contradicting Stone’s claim that high temperatures are the key to health.

        I’m not sure that contradiction means anything in reference to humans but I do understand the point you are trying to make.

    • anand srivastava on February 5, 2010 at 01:38

      Well, we went to a doctor, and told that my wife’s temperature normally stays lower by a degree. The doctor couldn’t believe that is possible ;-). We have done other tests and there is no hypothyroidism there. She is in pretty good health. Possibly better than me, although on a vegetarian diet. She has picked up some weight due to the bad diet we had since marriage to me :-(. But her numbers are still much better than me even after me being on a much healthier diet for the last 8 months.

      Recently she has got interested in losing weight, so is my time to experiment on her. Losing fat on a vegetarian diet, that must be a very difficult thing to do. Hopefully I won’t screw up. Need all the help from Stephan and Richard.

    • Kurt G Harris MD on February 5, 2010 at 12:31

      Don, you are spot on.

      Platonic forms indeed!

      BTW, normal mean is 98.2 anyway.

  14. Melissa on February 4, 2010 at 18:28

    You shouldn’t have to prove this. Matt Stone says some interesting things sometimes, but he is a bit of a troglodyte. The truth is that a paleo diet isn’t going to change anyone’s face much. People compliment me on my clear skin and ask if it’s because of the paleo diet. Haha, I’d love it if it were, but actually I had perfect skin when I ate Snickers and a bagel every day for lunch.

    And sadly, no amount of eating paleo is going to fix my messed up jaw or narrow nasal passages…that was up to what my mother ate. Which is why I think it’s too bad paleo is mostly men…if women plan to have children, eating well is essential for their future children’s health.

    • Michael on February 4, 2010 at 18:50

      The truth is that a paleo diet isn’t going to change anyone’s face much. People compliment me on my clear skin and ask if it’s because of the paleo diet. Haha, I’d love it if it were, but actually I had perfect skin when I ate Snickers and a bagel every day for lunch.

      I don’t know about. I have seen lots of folks faces and skin change because of diet, including my own.

      Which is why I think it’s too bad paleo is mostly men…if women plan to have children, eating well is essential for their future children’s health.

      Now you are channeling Weston Price. :-)

  15. zach on February 4, 2010 at 18:57

    You’re absolutely right Richard, you have to do what works for you. Just avoid fructose, wheat, and seed oils, basically any processed food. I think a problem with the “paleo” movement is that some people just have to believe that everyone’s physiology is exactly the same in every way, when that’s not the case.

    Edema? What in the world is Matt talking about? You don’t have edema.

    Body termperature: The most cursory look at the literature suggests to me that you may want to have low body termperature!! It makes intuitive sense, the candle that burns twice as hot, burns half as long. Certainly not a proof, but in the physical sciences, including chemistry, that’s how things tend to operate.

    • val on August 12, 2016 at 07:29

      That is because a candle has finite amount of wax – unlike us – we refuel.

      • MKT on August 12, 2016 at 08:46

        Not sure how this got dredged up. For the record, I think Matt Stone’s “Eat for Heat” book/theory is among the worst I’ve seen…as bad as any magic diet pill sold on late-night infomercials. It even suggested meals with things like cheesburgers and Pepsi. Evidently food quality didn’t matter, as long as you ate tons of calories “to boost your metabolism” and remained in a semi-dehydrated state.

        Lots of people on his forum started reporting massive weight gains after trying it. I think that’s one reason he shut his old “180 Degree Health” site/forum down.

  16. Guy on February 4, 2010 at 19:10

    Edema? That’s not edema, that’s just ugly!

    ;-) Richard, you know I love you, man!

  17. Jimbeaux on February 4, 2010 at 21:53

    I could care less if he makes money if he has something intelligent to say that does not come across as gross over promotion of an agenda that is based on “commentary” that seemingly attacks anyone with opinions and anecdotes contrary to his own.

    Mark’s Daily Apple is a prime example of a blog done right and I enthusiastically purchase from Mark’s site.

    Richard’s site, in my humble opinion, is fantastic in that Richard is willing to challenge his own assumptions openly. Jimmy is “real” and humble in his approach and I like his site as well. I do not agree with 100% of what anyone relates in a blog, but attitude goes a LONG way. Recently, Richard has been nothing but gracious to Stone from what I have read on Richard’s site. Stone is an asshole to write what he did – plain and simple. He should man up and apologize and/or explain himself.

  18. Michael on February 4, 2010 at 22:20

    I could care less if he makes money if he has something intelligent to say that does not come across as gross over promotion of an agenda that is based on “commentary” that seemingly attacks anyone with opinions and anecdotes contrary to his own.

    I guess I’m not seeing the gross over promotion of an agenda or attacks anyone with opinions and anecdotes contrary to his own.

    Seems like a really broad brush you are using.

    Mark’s Daily Apple is a prime example of a blog done right and I enthusiastically purchase from Mark’s site.

    Mark blew it recently on the Danny Roddy affair, and as of a few days ago I was not aware of any public apology (though Danny says they have squared things privately) although maybe things have changed. We all blow it sometimes. Might I now accuse Mark of over promotion and attacking people in light of that?

    Richard’s site, in my humble opinion, is fantastic in that Richard is willing to challenge his own assumptions openly.

    Yeah that is why I like both Richard and Matt’s blogs, even when I don’t agree either with what they say or their style in saying it.

    Jimmy is “real” and humble in his approach and I like his site as well. I do not agree with 100% of what anyone relates in a blog, but attitude goes a LONG way. Recently, Richard has been nothing but gracious to Stone from what I have read on Richard’s site. Stone is an asshole to write what he did – plain and simple. He should man up and apologize and/or explain himself.

    I don’t really want to get into why people like and buy from certain people rather than from others, their style, tone, or attitude, but I do think it is appropriate to keep separate his comments about Richard and bleeding those comments into all these other issues that are very tangential and from my vantage point quite inaccurate as I noted in my earlier comment.

    As one example, to seize on this post as an opportunity to bash Matt Stone for eating lots of carbs (as one illustration) is to miss the point entirely and to ignore what Richard is saying about his own diet.

    Well enough from me. Matt and Richard will either settle this or they won’t and what I think doesn’t much matter.

  19. arlojeremy on February 4, 2010 at 23:33

    Welcome to the Internet. One giant public school playground.

  20. Sue on February 5, 2010 at 01:22
  21. Cynthia on February 5, 2010 at 01:48

    I’ve read Matt’s blog on occasion and couldn’t handle his arrogance. He’s entertaining on occasion, but thinks way too highly of himself. As for eating carbs, I’m no zero carber, but I don’t appreciate Matt’s agenda making people doubt themselves, and his “listen to me cuz I know everything” attitude. Many people are doing low carb or paleo and getting fantastic results. If low carb doesn’t work for them, fine, they can try something else. But suggesting that you became hypothyroid and edemic b/c of your diet sounds really screwed- he’s just trying to undermine your message in favor of his own.

    I do think there is a subtext that is not yet understood in how people respond to various diets. A young, active, normal weight man can get away with eating in a way that an older, sedentary, unhealthy man cannot. I see that as Matt’s situation. I don’t know if his pancreas will eventually suffer from over carbing or whether that’s only an issue once insulin resistance sets in (prob from fatty liver re too much fructose). It may take 20 years before we know if his views are right (for him). In the meantime, I don’t need no arrogant youngun telling me (or you) what to do. And I know he doesn’t have a clue about people who’ve gotten themselves unhealthy and are trying to recover their health, whereas people like you and I do b/c we’ve been there.

  22. Paleo Pete on February 5, 2010 at 05:04

    can we stop with the body temperature quackery?

    unless you’ve done double blind clinical trials it’s literally impossible for a physician to know whether he’s seeing the results he thinks he is from sticking a thermometer in someone’s armpit or any other treatment.

    it’s also literally impossible for anyone who isn’t the treating physician himself/herself to know whether they are being truthful, or even just plain careful enough, in their observations.

    you can find doctors who are curing heart disease at a 96% rate with acupuncture too, or whatever else you’re looking for.

    I don’t know anything about mark but as soon as I saw he was one of the body temperature woo’s my eyes rolled back so hard i almost went permanently blind.

    based on that alone I can’t imagine anyone should take this guy seriously or trust his advice on any topic

    I think he got the edema thing from a picture a week or two ago where richard had really baggy eyes, I remember being surprised by the picture because none of the others featured that.

    but baggy eyes does not make edema.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2010 at 11:55

      “I think he got the edema thing from a picture a week or two ago where richard had really baggy eyes, I remember being surprised by the picture because none of the others featured that.”

      It’s possible. Unfortunately, most of the pics of me are at some sort of gathering, usually with my brothers, and someone always brings a bottle of scotch. The alcohol, to excess — which is an aspect of these gatherings — can definitely give me baggy eyes.

      The last one I posted was this, Xmas dinner.

      We’d probably been into the scotch for 6 hours by that time. :)

      But also, I’m 49, not 29 or whatever Matt is. And, I’ve obviously lost a lot of weight and so there’s a bit of excess skin in places. I’ll take the folds over the inflammation & puffiness.

      BTW, with regard to cold, I agree. And I think we’re highly adaptable. In my case, I used to have what I considered normal sensitivity to cold. I’m in CA Bay Area and in the winter it gets down into the low 40s and high 30s in the early morning, and this is when I walk the dogs — and hour, about 3.5 miles. Up until two years ago, October was the time I ditched the shorts for long pants and added a windbreaker to the sweatshirt. However, it’s two years now that I stick with the shorts, and even when in the 30s I go with the sweatshirt.

      But I don’t know whether the cause is the diet and low inflammation or the fact that twice per week, after my workouts my routing is 10 minutes in the sauna, 5 in the steam room, 2-3 in the jacuzzi, then 3-5 minutes in the cold plunge, which is maintained at 40F.

      Interesting the last couple of times, including not 30 minutes ago where I spent five minutes in the cold, I have not had even slightly cold hands. For the past few months since the cold hand deal popped up, I’d have to tuck them under my arms. Now I just hold them out.

  23. zach on February 5, 2010 at 05:25

    “He considered the acceptable range of human body temperature to be a waking axillary (armpit) body temperature of 97.8-98.2 degrees F.”

    4 tenths of one degree huh? I just took my temperature with an expensive hospital grade thermometer 5 times and got a range of 3 tenths of a degree. It just sounds kind of quacky on the face of it.

    • Organic Gabe on February 5, 2010 at 07:02

      That sums it up nicely, Zach.

      The idea that everyone should fall in that range or else … is great logic indeed; sigh, roll eyes…

  24. Jim on February 5, 2010 at 05:36

    Richard, I concur 100% with your post however, one thing jumps out at me.

    You stated he is downright rude. But to be frank, you have been downright rude in many of your posts toward others. I am just stayin…

    • Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2010 at 10:15


      Yep, I can be a rude asshole to be sure.

      But somewhere along the line…competing with other junior officers on a ship where I had 16 guys maintaining a missile system, 65 deck seamen, and 20 electricians…or maybe it was the company I founded in 1993 and grew to over 30 employees, dozens of affiliates and multiple locations…

      I learned who to be rude to and who not to be rude to.

  25. Alex on February 5, 2010 at 06:04

    Matt’s edema diagnosis reminds me of doctor turned politician, Bill Frist, who thought he could diagnose Terri Schiavo from watching a few minutes of carefully edited video tape. Such “diagnoses” do nothing but demonstrate a complete lack of credibility.

  26. Poppy Daniels on February 5, 2010 at 21:37

    As a real physician who sees real patients, I have to say that people get into trouble with an N of 1 (themselves). The real pitfall is making everything too simplistic, when there are just too many individual factors that make one person’s experience very different from someone else’s. I see this difference mainly between men and women (I treat both), generally because women’s hormones fluctuate much more than men’s. My main argument with Matt Stone is that diet is just not the only issue. Abnormal hormones, burned out adrenals, vitamin/mineral deficiencies can all contribute to individual symptoms including low body temps. However, there is no doubt that iodine deficiency causes low body temps and hypometabolism in many people. How do I know? I test urinary iodine excretion. Low body temps may be the poor man’s measure, but I personally prefer objective data and go by that in conjunction with the clinical presentation; which is more reliable than one or two people’s personal experience. I don’t really think that Matt is seriously encouraging people to consistently eat HED with crappy food, he’s a real food advocate, a good cook, even if you don’t like his personality. And getting everyone’s input without resorting to bashing each other to me seems more productive for everyone in the long run.

  27. Russ on February 5, 2010 at 07:17

    Just a plea to get back to the great CONTENT provided by both guys….and a departure from a bad high school flashback.

    Many people here would be served well to “not throw stones from a glass house” judging by a good bit of the (unneccesay) reaction here.

  28. Shantelle on February 5, 2010 at 08:57

    If I can wrangle this conversation to the dental side of things… I am in the process of looking for a dentist and was hoping that someone could help steer me towards a Dentist who supports our lifestyle. I live in Denver, and most that I have encountered are all about SAD, and they all tend to look at me with worry and/or disdain that I am not eating “properly”. If anyone has a suggestion, I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you.

  29. shel on February 5, 2010 at 11:59

    “And if it makes you other cocksuckers feel any better, we’ve all got a product to sell”

    ~yes we do, and the markets are truth. i’ll never take that away from you.

    but if one wants to understand a man’s bias, one must follow the money and find out what he’s selling.

    whether that detracts from, or adds to your credibility, the markets will decide.

  30. Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2010 at 12:12

    “…Richard’s profile pic. His current pic at that.”

    Wrong. This was the profile pic then:

    That was taken this summer on a Mexico cruise at my parents’ 50th anniversary dinner. It was inside, no flash. The current profile pic is from the same cruise, outside, so the blotches of tan aren’t there, nor the watery eyes (if my shades weren’t on.

    And also, as already stated, this was a party and I was pretty much toast by that point. We’d been out on deck all afternoon cocktailing with liquor & champaign. This is why, for instance, a picture of my face after a workout or at 10pm after drinks dinner and cards with friends will be different.

    Moreover, I have always had naturally chipmunky cheeks, courtesy of my mom’s genes.

    And more. The simple fact is that this whole picture diagnosis nonsense is just that, and strikes me as just a bit Ms. Cleo-esque.

    All that said, I do wish you well in your efforts, Matt, and I stand apart from those who would criticize you from trying to turn a dime here and there.

    Now I have to go see what this is all about.

    • Chris on February 5, 2010 at 12:49

      First link to your old profile pic is not working…

    • Chris on February 5, 2010 at 13:32

      I agree with Dr. Harris. Matt seems to be 100% salesman, regardless of the plausibility of any of his statements (actually, your photos do look like you have some orbital edema, but you can’t diagnose from a photo, and how did he rule out differentials, etc…). I love statements like this:

      “No matter what diet you’re on, what your other numbers are, or even how good you feel – your body is simply not at its ideal metabolic level…”

      So no matter how well you’re doing, you should feel bad that you’re not doing optimally and BUY MATT’S PRODUCT to find out how to remedy that situation. What a sleazebag. As far as money-making on the web goes, there is a world of difference between hosting ads on your site, or even endorsing a product, and writing essays that end “and if you want to find out the cure, click here now.”

      I think the best way to deal with Matt is to ignore him.

  31. Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2010 at 12:57

    Now when Matt talks about metabolism in general rather than trying to issue diagnoses via out-of-context photos on the internet, good work can happen.

    While I remain very skeptical of this body temperature hype, there’s a lot of good points in this guest post at Tom Naughton’s blog.

    And Dr. Kurt Harris has a mild rebuttal here:

  32. CJane on February 5, 2010 at 16:10

    I agree, Kurt.

    The very reason why I “unfollowed” him on Twitter was so no one else would click on the link to his page (and since seeing my comment here, Matt has unfollowed me, as well).Everything I read on his website started out to be something I agreed with, and then WHAM…hit with something with the bit of medical and biology knowledge I have, well, I just couldn’t agree with it. And then the whole thing about selling this mysterious, misguided, and misinformed diet philosophy, it just left a bad taste in my mouth.

    Matt does seem likable enough, though full of himself, which I could just chalk up to his youth, but he’s certainly old enough to know what he’s doing, and it just seems off to me.

    Richard, you don’t look like you have edema to me in any of your more recent pics (just my opinion). Good going on the weight loss and your lifestyle change. Our philosophies don’t match 100%, but we are all different and have to tweak our eating plans to what works best for each of us. That said, we are not all so different that the general philosophy of turning away from the SAD diet and processed junk won’t help each and every one of us. Keep up the good work in your life and here on your blog. Cheers!

  33. Debbie on February 5, 2010 at 19:02

    I get a kick out of Matt’s blog. He is an irreverent and entertaining writer, and he has some awesome recipes. His sweet potato recipe is so incredible I don’t think I’ll ever eat them any other way again. That said, I still do follow a diet far lower in carbs than Matt advocates, though not as low as an Atkins-induction-style diet. And also I get most of my carbs from starches as I have gradually come to believe that fructose is more the enemy than glucose is. At the moment I am not “counting” anything, though my carbs remain lowish and my sat fats highish, and I avoid fructose, gluten grains, and high PUFA-oils. And so far I have lost 100 pounds.

    I don’t agree with much of what Matt says (not to mention his commenters) about how low carb is the devil itself in regard to long-term health, and I don’t feel all carbs are the devil either. Just those refined grains and fructose and high PUFA oils, etc.

    So I have to admit that I sort of turned off when someone wrote to Matt about how to get her metabolism working after years of , I believe, very low calorie and he told her just to EAT EAT EAT, eat anything and everything. Eat as many calories as possible, even if it means eating lots of pizza and ice cream.

    Sorry, I don’t think carbs are the devil, and I don’t think eating lots of calories is the devil either, but I also don’t feel stuffing myself on pizza and ice cream is the way to heal my metabolism. Heck, that was the sort of diet I lived on that got me up into the morbidly obese category! If the High Everything Diet was only *real food* I might have more respect for it – but telling people to stuff themselves with pizza and ice cream does not seem like the best way to regain health, IMHO of course. :-)

    • Richard Nikoley on February 6, 2010 at 10:22


      Maybe it was you in comments over at Fat Head, but there was mention of that sweet potato recipe. Any chance I can get it? I happen to have about 5 sweet potatoes around here just now.

  34. Danny Roddy on February 5, 2010 at 19:33

    Hey Richard,

    Do you have any plans to try to slowly titrate off your thyroid meds?

    I’ve read about others who were able to replace Armour with Iodoral.

    Great site,


    • Richard Nikoley on February 6, 2010 at 10:15

      Hey Danny. Unlike others, I’m not going to do that 50mg of iodine thing. Just 12.5, average Japanese intake and see how it goes. So, it’s highly possible I will be able to at least reduce my 120mg dose of Armor over time.

      One thing I found is that though the cold had issue is completely resolved (they are now actually warm all the time) I still get the cold feet, but far less often. But I found a solution to that, too that’s kinda counter-intuitive. I not only take off my shoes, but my socks too, and my feet toast right up. Go figure.

  35. Chris on February 5, 2010 at 22:53

    The interesting thing is that Matt was not the creator of the original HED diet which was bounced about by a certain member/commentator on his blog. Matt proposes eating 3 big nourishing meals a day with a good portion of starch in each from good sources (mainly potato’s and rice, grits etc) along with some quality meat and a good portion of fat.

    The comments in this post have gone out of hand twisting the information that Matt gives on his blog. He is simply allowing people to get over eating disorders by eating real food and restoring their relationship with food. Which does far more favours than giving someone who already has a damaged metabolism hope by pushing an unsustainable low carb regime. The comments putting him down for pushing a product are pathetic, we all have to make a living and whether you agree with the theories or not his e-books are well written and researched. Certainly not overpriced or a con.

    “Food is Love” that is something important for us all to remember, it is something we should learn to enjoy again like we did in our youth and our ancestors have, be free with choices rather than being constrained to certain food groups. Healthy people don’t diet or limit their food choices, they simply have a robust metabolism and digestion system. Stay away from the obvious junk in todays world and you will be fine…..

    • Alex on February 6, 2010 at 08:43

      For decades I ate an unrestrained diet of natural, whole foods, including lots of starch, and it was terrible for my health. I can only laugh at his insistence that starch doesn’t make people fat because Asians aren’t fat. Well, I’m not Asian, and starches did make me fat. He’s basically promoting the same dietary dumbassery that made me fat and lethargic in the first place. I can accept that there are people who can do well on diets containing greater quantities of starch (Kitavans being an obvious example), but Matt promotes himself as a dietary guru by obnoxiously trying to cast doubt on people who are having success on diets that do restrict certain macronutrients. On top of that, he’s making quack medical diagnoses over the Internet, which is Douchebaggery of the Highest Order.

      • DML on February 6, 2010 at 11:12

        So you ate no vegetable oils, sugar, HFCS, etc. You did not calorie restrict or “over-exercise” at any point?

        Even if you did none of those things, your experience does not demonstrate that Matt is wrong.

        I am reminded of raising pastured swine. Every once in a while, some of the swine, despite quite arguably eating a very natural diet for pigs, would become ill. A breeding sow, for instance, might become heavier than the others, or develop arthritis. We are more the sum of what we are eating or have ate. Our health is also influenced by our genes and the environment.

        It is quite interesting, for instance, that wild animals, who are still demonstrably eating the same diet they ate for many years prior, are experiencing an increase in the rate of cancer. Given the diet is the same, the most likely explanation is environmental pollution.

        Understanding the universe and ourselves is a process of applying reason to the things we observe. The scientific method is great -the best approach- but is not always practical or possible to do so at any given instant in time. However, in those cases, we can at least try to isolate variables and not be led around by our current dogmas.

      • Alex on February 6, 2010 at 12:42

        With respect to my particular physiology, Matt is absolutely wrong. He would probably argue that my problem was the sugars and not the starches, but it was the starches that drove the craving for sugars. And it was the almost complete elimination of starches that made the complete elimination of sugar possible.

        And, no, there was no over-exercising or forced caloric restriction. I’m a life-long non-athlete who is too passionately fond of food to ever forcefully restrict calories. During my 5-month weight loss phase from 190# down to 160#, I ate as much as I wanted. It’s just that without all the carbs, my appetite was sated for twice as long, and I naturally and effortlessly ate fewer calories.

  36. Diana Hsieh on February 6, 2010 at 14:25

    I wrote two posts on body temperature and thyroid function today that might be of interest:

    * Thyroid and Body Temperatures: A general discussion of thyroid function and body temperatures, including problems of knowing what optimal body temperatures are and measuring body temperature accurately.

    * Body Temperature: Personal Results: A report on my own body temperatures since mid-December — with charts!

    In addition, I posted the questions on hypothyroidism, iodine, and desiccated thyroid that I sent to Dr. Eades.

    Comments welcome, as always.

  37. mallory on February 6, 2010 at 08:10

    good post.. i askedhim a couplequestions but he hasnt responded. i eat a vry oderae carb diet after a yr of zero carb but i a nt buyig into his high starch dieting. btw- i think you look great an have had amazing improements!

    i have done some reading on paleo and I cannot figure what sources to go by. Some say potatoes aren’t paleo and some say “nightshades aren’t paleo, some say nuts aren’t paleo, some say cheese is Neolithic but okay??? Im confused.

  38. Melissa on February 6, 2010 at 08:30

    Just reading his blog reminds me that when I traveled through Central Europe I unintentionally ate his diet. I kept the high fat content of my previous paleo diet, but I enjoyed lots of potatoes, sourdough rye bread, polenta, etc. Definitely delicious and at first I felt pretty awesome.

    I didn’t exactly gain weight, but I did get some serious stomach aches, strep throat, and my gums started bleeding. Maybe I’m gluten intolerant, but I got the blood test shortly after and it was negative.

    Once you think about it, this is probably the diet of your more recent peasant farmer ancestors. They weren’t obese or diabetic, but they gained weight as they got older and by the time they were 60 they were probably missing half their teeth.

  39. Julie on February 6, 2010 at 08:44

    I’ve never felt any pressue to buy anything from Matt, and never spent a dime on his site. I used to read his blog, but at times it felt a little inconsistent with information, and I was tired of the “Matt, I eat 4 pounds of potatoes a day, am I doing it right?” posts. In any case, I appreciate his promotion of Diana Schwarzbein, MD and Weston A. Price, and I’ve always agreed with his ideas of healing metabolism rather than eating to “avoid” the problem, and causing further damage in the long run.

  40. DML on February 6, 2010 at 10:06

    These arguments that go along the line: “Well, look at me! I ate starch! And it ruined my health! Therefore Matt, that quack, is wrong!” are so inane and silly.

    The people who are saying this are not making any attempt to isolate variables. Was it the starch? Or was it the fact that most people who are eating low carb/paleo now originally ate starch along with the veggie oils and HFCS and all the other crap of the SAD diet; coupled with the fact that many (not all) of these people probably calorie restricted and heavily exercised at some point?

    Frankly, I bet it’s the latter. I used to think that starches made me fat, too. Thus, I ate low carb and then paleo for a while. It worked okay for my for some time, but then I ran into the very problems Matt describes. So I used his approach, healed my metabolism and health, and can eat freely of all the macro-nutrients, the way a truly healthy person can.

    The key seems to be in bringing the hormones and metabolism back in to working order, and avoiding vegetable oils, HFSC, and other dietary poison’s. In other, words, I had not isolated the variables, and was thus convinced starch has played a role in my poor health.

    Furthermore, I don’t know everything, you don’t know everything, and neither does Matt. Hence we have to acknowledge that it is possible that diet is an individual thing, and we cannot get to caught up in a particular way of eating. The best we can do is try to optimize our health and metabolism.

    To put things in perspective, here is a quote from Matt yesterday morning under the “Count the Obese Starch Eater Game” post:

    “Welcome. I’ve done extensive research that has given me some of these ideas. We’re not trying to convince anyone of anything really, just trying to achieve what could be considered the optimal metabolism.

    There are people losing weight, and there are people gaining weight. There are people feeling better, there are people feeling worse.

    There’s not a real discoure about any “optimal human diet” here, [we are] figuring out how to counterbalance our imbalances through diet.

    And there is strong evidence that getting hardly any omega 6 or omega 3 is better than getting a lot of either.

    I can’t describe exactly what the idea is here in a paragraph or two. You’ll have to snoop around a bit. But stick around and decide for yourself whether we’re getting into something good or not. Others will gladly fire off answers to your questions as well.”

    Wow! What a brash young man! How dogmatic he is! What a shyster! Look at how he is trying to force his ideas off on everybody! Look at how he is making money by scaring people! Etc, Ect, (fill in preferred hyperbolic, ad hoc statement).

    I will agree that Matt went a little too far with the photo thing, but to try to discredit him based on that is asinine. We all blow it sometimes. Einstein disagreed with, and even mocked and ridiculed, some of the key theories of quantum mechanics. These theories where later demonstrated- even as Einstein to mock them- to be the best possible explanation of the quantum phenomenon. Does that make him a quack with an agenda, and incorrect about his own contribution to science misguided and wrong? Only a quack who himself has an agenda would declare that to be the case.

    As Michael pointed out:

    “Mark blew it recently on the Danny Roddy affair, and as of a few days ago I was not aware of any public apology (though Danny says they have squared things privately) although maybe things have changed. We all blow it sometimes. Might I now accuse Mark of over promotion and attacking people in light of that?”


    In closing, I would like to say that people need to follow their own best judgement when it comes to health. However, when I see people engaging in hyperbolic, ad hoc arguments against Matt that demonstrate a lack of effort to even understand his ideas (=1), I am led to conclude people are simply be led around by their own dogmatic view of diets. Even Richard himself said:

    “Now when Matt talks about metabolism in general rather than trying to issue diagnoses via out-of-context photos on the internet, good work can happen.”

    (=1): No, I did not directly support that particular assertion. If I had, this post would have been really long. However, the support is “between the lines” so to speak. Moreover, I am confident that the people who are guilty of this know it in their hearts, no matter how vigorously they may publicly deny it with arguments from sophistry.

    • Michael on February 6, 2010 at 21:30

      As Michael pointed out:

      “Mark blew it recently on the Danny Roddy affair, and as of a few days ago I was not aware of any public apology (though Danny says they have squared things privately) although maybe things have changed. We all blow it sometimes. Might I now accuse Mark of over promotion and attacking people in light of that?”

      Yes, and I probably should have been more explicit about what I was referencing since my guess is while many know what I am talking about others might not or didn’t bother to look it up.

      Mark Sisson, in his recent critique of the zero carb way of eating, did the exact same thing with Danny Roddy that got Richard all pissed off at Matt Stone, internet diagnosing via some web pictures as a way of warning against some potential dangers of zero carb.

      He specifically said that Roddy had scurvy like symptoms from zero carbing based on some rather nasty looking pictures posted by Danny. What was particularly troubling about his remarks is Danny Roddy got rid of those symptoms by doing the very thing Sisson was criticizing, albeit at a higher volume. Surely Mark had to know, since he apparently reads Danny’s blog, and if he didn’t know he should have immediately made a correction to his post once he found it.

      There was nary a peep from any of his loyal readers, some of who are represented in this comment thread quite pissed off about what Matt did with Richard’s picture.

      Sisson still has that reference in his blog post as of 8:44 pm PST.

      He and Danny seemed to have reconciled privately but unlike Matt Stone, Mark Sisson has not shown up to explain himself on Danny’s blog, or made any attempt to clarify things since he made the remarks on his own blog, not in another blogger’s combox.

      Now Danny had a very courteous and even (in my opinion) deferential response to Mark Sisson, while wondering in print why he had been singled out like that. Cool. Everyone has their own style in handling things. Danny is even represented in this comment thread and I enjoy both their blogs even if I disagree with them on various points.

      But what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, and frankly I think all this might have been better served by having Richard and Matt meet in their own smack down in this combox, while closing comments to everyone else, since their own comments in this thread seem rather reasonable or at least on point, unlike many other comments I have read here.

      And just so anyone doesn’t think this is something that I wasn’t concerned with before, here was my comment of January 26 on Danny’s site:

      I enjoy your site. I also enjoy Mark’s site. Truth is, I thought that was the equivalent of a cyberspace drive by shooting. Of course there is nothing wrong with critiquing someone as long as you represent them properly by giving everything the proper meaning and context. Suggesting scurvy given what you wrote was out of bounds, in my opinion. I am glad he reached out to you privately. Not that it is any of my business but if he hasn’t made a public acknowledgement (since he wrote the comment for public consumption) I hope he does so shortly.

      If either of you (Matt and Richard) ever do want to hash this out further together without any outside comments until you both are finished going back and forth, you are welcome to use my blog as a neutral meeting place.

      • Jimbeaux on February 6, 2010 at 23:07

        “you are welcome to use my blog as a neutral meeting place.”

        Oh boy…

      • Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 08:30

        Thanks for the offer, Michael, but I think I’ll leave it right here. Certainly there are folks offering various defenses of Matt here, I’m glad for that because I’m not a big fan of fan-based dog piles. And I agree that Matt has many good things going for him. Hopefully with the various negative comments here, at Kurt’s place, and even at Tom’s, Matt will have input that at least causes him to reevaluate, if not his ideas, perhaps his approach to them.

        I know I do always consider negative comments here and elsewhere about me.

        BTW, I tend to agree with the distinction Kurt made with respect to Danny’s and my situation and I don’t think Mark S would have done what he did if there wasn’t some aspect of an invitation by Danny to diagnose.

        Thanks for the huge support you donate to this blog.

    • Alex on February 6, 2010 at 11:47

      I was never big on HFCS, and I learned about Weston A. Price and stopped using polyunsaturated seed oils about 4 years before going in the direction of paleo and finally losing weight. I did eat a fair amount of sugar in the form of sucanat, honey, and fruit, but that was mostly due to cravings from lunchtime starches crashing my blood sugar. When I reduced my starch intake to two pieces of sprouted grain toast in the evening, there were no more blood sugar swings to drive overeating. Starches in the form of whole grains, pseudograins, beans, sweetpotatoes, and potatoes were a significant part of my diet, and specifically eating less or none of them is what stabilized my blood sugar and allowed me to effortlessly lose the flabby innertube around my waist.

      • DML on February 6, 2010 at 12:01


        See my reply to you above.

  41. Debbie on February 6, 2010 at 15:33

    “Maybe it was you in comments over at Fat Head, but there was mention of that sweet potato recipe. Any chance I can get it? I happen to have about 5 sweet potatoes around here just now.”

    I’m not the sort who tends to measure things – this recipe does include dairy, though I bet it could be done with coconut milk too (Note to self: Have to try that). The original recipe with measurements and things came from Matt. This is the way I do it.

    Take your sweet potatoes – however many you think you will want. Then peel them and slice them very thin, as if you were thinking of making them into potato chips. Put them in a bowl and add a pinch (or 2-3 pinches depending on taste and number of potatoes) of sea salt, a bit of thyme (maybe something like a 1/4 tsp for 1-2 potatoes, up to a tsp or so for a larger number of potatoes), and a bunch of ground cinnamon. I just shake and shake and shake, put in quite a bit of cinnamon. Blend those together. Then add in heavy cream. I use raw unpasteurized cream which is super-thick and creamy yellow – but use whatever heavy cream you have(or coconut milk). Add enough to cover all the potatoes and then stir them well so each slice gets coated in cream. Turn it all into a casserole dish and bake at 450 for about 30 minutes. Once or twice I will pull out the casserole dish and stir the potatoes, so the all get evenly coated in the cream as they cook. Then pull it out and sprinkle a bunch of chopped pecans on top – however many looks good to you. I like a lot! Then return to oven for another 15 minutes. That’s it. They should be soft enough for a fork to go through them easily at this point. Let them sit for 10-15 minutes before serving if you can wait. They they are amazingly sweet and awesome. I know sweet potatoes and raw cream are not really “paleo” but I am more of a Dr. Harris PaNu eater I guess – “real foods” minus gluten grains, sugars and high-PUFA vegetable oils.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 6, 2010 at 15:37

      Sounds good and I will try. If you ever bake sweet potatoes, here’s what you can do with the skins and it’s awesome. Just flatten them out and sautee them in butter until crispy. Take them out and sprinkle with cinnamon.

      You can do the same with russets, but rather than cinnamon, use sea salt.

  42. […] My good friend Dr. Kurt Harris takes on some of Matt Stone's ideas: 180 + 180 = 360. Quite a lot of interesting […]

  43. scott miller on February 6, 2010 at 16:57

    I read a few of Matt’s posts last year, but quickly realized we do not agree on key points. And as much as anything, his personality, thru his writings, didn’t sit well with me. It’s clear he thinks he has it figured out more than the rest of us. His perceived superiority is evidence, and therefore I ignore him.

    Richard, by contrast, comes off as just one of us, fighting our way thru the dietary mess we’ve been handed by our government and profit-motivated medical system.

    I’d start a blog if I had time, but it’d be too much like Richard’s. Him and I are on the same page in almost every respect.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 6, 2010 at 17:10

      Thanks Scott. I really appreciate that and I’m sure you know how much I respect (and listen to) your take on things. And you’re my go-to-guy on all things supplementation.

    • gallier2 on February 7, 2010 at 05:52

      To add a little bit childish internet lingo: second that!

      Matt reminds me a lot of Anthony Colpo, even if a lot of points they make are valid and good, their choice of targets and their superiority complex put them in the “avoid camp”. What I like in people like you Richard, Stephan, Peter, the Eades, Kurt Harris, Jimmy Moore and others, it’s that all know that they have knowledge gaps and that they speak from authority in the subjects they have specialized in, nothing more, nothing less. They express their opinions while acknowledging that they might be wrong (but that it needs serious arguments for that). Matt and Anthony on the contrary have definitive answers that will earn only scorn on contradictors.

      • Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 08:38

        I think Colpo’s just an asshole who thrives on negative attention. In some respect, I have similar traits, but I target against evil, believing it highly counter-productive to attack people generally in the same camp with many things in common, just because I think they’re wrong about something.

        Matt, by contrast, is generally a nice guy, but he’s like the guy who only has a hammer: everything is a nail.

        Keep in mind that if my problem was a broken or low metabolism, I gained all my weight while on T meds. Then, six months or so into my path I stopped the T meds for well over a year. Most of the 60 pounds I lost, supposedly with a broken metabolism, I dd without benefit of T meds, I felt great — still do, except for a brief period — got off all other meds, reversed gum disease, corrected BP, and so on.

        It’s simply a lot more complicated than telling people to EAT EAT EAT (pig out, as I call it).

  44. Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 10:21

    Just FYI, Dr. Kurt & I have landed on Lyle McDonald’s “Monkey Island” (requires free signup).

    The person who started the thread and linked to this and Kurt’s posts is apparently under the mistaken impression that this is a case of “eating our young.” I posted a brief clarification.

    • Alex on February 7, 2010 at 11:52

      Nice response, Richard. I gotta admit, though, that after scoping out the general vibe of that forum, I’d love to be Samantha Stevens and tinka-tinka-tee every last one of those snarky kids into middle-age and let ’em live with it for a while. It’s real easy to think you know bloody fucking everything when you’re an athletically inclined 20-something.

  45. kirk on February 7, 2010 at 00:48

    I don’t get the hate for Matt. I don’t pick up any sense of superiority, he just calls em how he sees em. Even if he did act that way, ignoring him for that reason makes you full retard. I’m also pretty sure he does have it figured out more than most of us. He’s researched almost everything there is on nutrition from what seems like an unbiased point of view. How many of us paleotards can say that?

    • djinn on February 7, 2010 at 10:08

      I don’t see any hate for Matt. I see disagreement with his ideas and distaste for some
      of his actions. I also see quite a lot of complaints from his personal supporters that others
      don’t adequately appreciate him.
      I’ve also researched “almost everything there is on nutrition” in the process of learning
      how to improve my health – and making sure I wasn’t compromising it. What makes you
      think he knows more than I do? Is it his “I know stuff you folks couldn’t figure out” stance?
      I’m not a “paleotard”; nor am I biased toward any particular point of view.
      I don’t care if he’s unbiased or controversial. I do care that he’s often wrong and annoying.
      I certainly don’t hate him, but if he keeps on bugging people, I could learn to dislike him.

  46. Troy on February 7, 2010 at 08:47

    I have to agree with matt on this…. anyone with a half decent metabolism will be screwed on the paleo approach…. best just to take the real food approach and not worry about saturated fat or carbs.

    A root cause of a bad metabolism that i don’t think people talk about much is, not enough breastfeeding, low quality breast milk, or soymilk infant formula. If your parents gave you soy formula, they were pretty much un-knowingly killing you…. and as far as judging facial development or facial irregularities, were all kinda fucked in that arena… almost no one is perfect anymore… not like in NAPD.


  47. Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 09:00

    “anyone with a half decent metabolism will be screwed on the paleo approach…. ”

    Ignorant nonsense. And it completely ignores the thousands of folks who have obtained fabulous results.

    But yea, I know. In spite of tremendous weight loss, getting off meds, rectifying BP, sleep issues, psych issues and a host of other things and above all, feeling great, they need nonetheless to follow the guru who says they’re doing it all wrong.

    Big bullshit, Troy.

    • Alex on February 7, 2010 at 09:31

      It also ignores 180,000 years of paleolithic man eating paleolithic diets covering a broad spectrum of macronutrient ratios, depending on geographical location.

      Considering that Matt’s diet more nearly resembles SAD, he would do a lot more good and probably be more successful if he’d focus on SADers and get them to stop eating sugar and industrial PUFA vegetable oil. It makes no sense that he’s so focused on people who are already successful in finding the right diet.

    • Troy on February 7, 2010 at 12:43

      whos the guru…?

      i have seen your progress… very nice… you ate real foods… just keep eating real foods and you will probably never be fat again… i for sure think weight training has a tremendous benefit.. no matter what diet your eating. The fact is, some people are screwed from the beginning if they were raised on soy infant formula, followed by SAD.

      be well,

  48. A on February 7, 2010 at 10:43

    “anyone with a half decent metabolism will be screwed on the paleo approach…. ” I think he meant without. Oh well…

    • Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 10:46

      The point is that whether you have a half-decent metabolism, a great one, or a crappy one, if you lose weight and correct other medical problems on paleo, it’s bullshit to question those individual results.

      • gallier2 on February 7, 2010 at 12:20

        I registered there just to read that thread and have to agree with Kurt G. Harris, you shouldn’t have bothered. They remind me a lot of the buffy wankers one sees in gyms (a reason I hate these gyms). The monkey analogy is not that bad either, one alpha male and a lot of followers eating the alphas poop to get recognition.

      • Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 12:34

        Ha, that’s classic! I’ll have to remember it.

        By the way, I often do a lot of things I shouldn’t. :)

      • DML on February 8, 2010 at 01:57

        Surely, then, it is bullshit to question the success of those individuals who are using Matt’s approach?

        By success, I mean: better mood, improved body temperature, followed by a decrease in appetite and weight loss. Lots of people who stick with it and don’t freak out about the weight gain report those very things, myself included.

        I am not saying it will work, or has worked, for everybody, but apparently paleo doesn’t either. (Speaking from personal experience.)

      • DML on February 8, 2010 at 09:30

        I typed “…the weight gain report those very things, myself included.”

        I should have typed “…the INITIAL weight gain report those very things, myself included.”

      • Richard Nikoley on February 8, 2010 at 13:27

        I’m not questioning individuals. Hell, I’ve even acknowledged that raw vegan get get type 2s off insulin. Still a dumb diet, though.

  49. A on February 7, 2010 at 12:30

    You seem obssesed with weight and hunger. Eat animal foods, not too much? Why not too much? What’s too much? If you read Steffanson he says eskimos ate just for passing the time. What’s not too much? After all, eating too much is a physiological response, so you never do eat too much for what your body asks. You sound hungry.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 7, 2010 at 12:43

      Who’s “you?” It helps to use the reply function if you’re not going to specify who you are talking about amongst the 96 comments that come before you.

      Second, the only thing that remotely resembles your _implied_ quote, since in addition to not using the reply, you didn’t use quotation marks, is this quote by me in one of the comments:

      “Eat real food, not too much, mostly animal fat & meat.”

      So as a third potential problem, can you actually read? Look, I don’t mind being challenged, but get it the fuck right, OK? Jesus, already. And look, when you use an anonymous pseudonym like “A” you begin with zero respect from me. You could be anyone, including someone I tell to just go fuck off.

      Fourth, do you have a problem understanding what eating too much food is and that’s an individual issue?

      Fifth, do you not understand at any rate that this is in the context of someone who’s telling you to eat when you’re not hungry?

      Could it be that the principle definition in any individual’s case for eating too much is eating when not hungry.

      Alright then, five problems for a five sentence comment should be quite enough.

      • Swede on February 8, 2010 at 07:01

        Typical Paleo response there Richard. Why is your mood so bad all the time? It shows in your comments. Feel free to tell me to fuck off as well…

      • B on February 8, 2010 at 07:56

        It used to show in his posts as well, until he realized that people were paying attention and he could get more exposure and possibly turn it into something profitable.

        Or maybe…

        ‘Richeard’ is a name from Old English where ‘Ric’ meant ruler and ‘heard’ meant hard.

        Oh, and if Dick doesn’t get around to it: FUCK YOU, SWEDE!

        Have a nice day.

      • Richard Nikoley on February 8, 2010 at 11:43

        It’s not a typical response, Swede, it’s what happens sometimes when I get dumb, incoherent, illiterate questions and BS from an anonymous source.

  50. A on February 7, 2010 at 13:52

    Oh no, no, the problem is not eating when you’re hungry. That “not too much” thing suggests you’re at odds with food. Not my cup of tea. Btw, the A is for Arnold, so we can get personal.

    • Richard Nikoley on February 8, 2010 at 11:45

      If you eat when hungry, stop when full and don’t eat until you’re hungry again, then “too much” doesn’t apply. So no worries.

  51. Richard Nikoley on February 9, 2010 at 11:56

    Just wow.

    “I received a thorough tongue-lashing by Richard Nikoley of for suggesting that he is hypothyroid (which he is, and was diagnosed with that disorder many years ago)”

    [link removed]

    Not even when it’s in black & white for anyone to check up on can Matt just be straight with what went down and why it went down.

    • Joseph on February 9, 2010 at 14:59

      The chief problem I have with Matt is that I cannot get an objective handle on what he means by “a healthy metabolism.” He appears very attached to mythological thinking (see Brent’s m=l), waxing eloquent about the lack of “fat starch-eaters” without saying what it means to be “fat” and what impact that has on health (which I have never seen him define: maybe he does define it somewhere). What about the people who are not “fat” but have serious problems with atherosclerosis? He does not see them, as far as I can tell. He would be more helpful to me if he would articulate carefully what he understands human health to be, then construct it with concepts that can be dealt with objectively (e.g. lab tests), rather than giving me his n=l experience with a bunch of undefined scientific jargon and confused testimonials from people who do not really understand what they are talking about.

      These people (I am looking at you, DML) think even more mythologically than Matt, who at least refers intelligently to epidemiological research. They demand cutting-edge scientific research from Richard, who is not a scientist (nor does he claim to be), and call him to task for failing to isolate variables, which is precisely what Matt is worst at (in my humble opinion). So Matt can tell us to eat carbohydrates all day long and enjoy being like the righteous Kitavans, but Richard had better have a sheaf of articles two miles thick for suggesting that some of us might possibly be happier as Eskimos?

      • DML on February 9, 2010 at 23:42

        You are funny, Joseph!

        You are squaking around about “undefined scientific jargon” and “confused tesitmonials” while using an undefined, and meaningless, phrase yourself, i.e. “mythological thinking.”

        Mythological thinking, huh? I googled the phrase, and every source that I read defined it differently. Moreover, I have read a fair amount of philosophy and have ran across that phrase a couple of times from various philosphers. They, too, all defined it differently. Conclusion? “Mythological thinking” is a vague, meaningless phrase one uses to insult people when one does not have anything intelligent to say.

        On the other hand, I don’t know everything. Perhap’s mythological thinking is a well known phrase that actually means something. Or it could be that it’s meaning is really obvious in this context (rolls eyes). Or maybe you made up a phrase to describe the type of thinking you think Matt and I engage in. If that is the case, it behooves you to define it. Otherwise you are doing nothing but engaging in an ad hoc attack -like many others on this site.

        So, please, Joseph. Define what you mean. Then it might have some meaning within the context of this discourse. Furthermore, your writing is so inexact that I cannot even discern a definition by attempting to read between the lines.

        Also, you set up a straw man so you could knock it down. Matt has never demanded from Richard, as far as I know, “cutting edge research.” Nor have I, here or anywhere else. Moreover, my comment about failing to isolate variables was directed, not at Richard, but at people who were talking about eating starch and how it ruined their health. Considering 1.) I question how bad whole, natural starch really can be, based on observational and epidemiological evidence and research from people like Weston A. Price, T.L. Cleave, Robert McCarrison, etc; and 2.) I am convinced that there is very compelling evidence that HFCS and vegetable oils are more likely problematic, based on reading various research papers and blogs, such as 180 and wholehealthsource, it only makes sense that I would wonder if people have attempted to isolate variables when they seem to single out starch. Observe, for instance, my exchange with Alex. I asked him about his consumption of veggie oils and HFCS. He responded with some clarifications and I did not question his individual experience.

        I did point out, though, that we are more than the sum of what we eat, or have ate. Anybody who has researched the rise of cancer in wildlife who are eating the same diet their ancestors did will conclude that external factors, such as environmental pollution, play a role in health. In other words, that is yet another variable to consider when one is isolating the variable(s) that led to a decline in health. What I’m trying to articulate here is that the issue is complex, and pointing to one variable and saying “There is the evil” is probably an oversimplification.

        Regarding what Matt means when he talks about a “healthy metabolism” here are some clues. 1.)Read Matt’s posts tagged Diana Schwarzbein. 2.) Read Matt’s post titled “Metabolic Typing” from December, 2009. 3.) If you are still not satisfied, ask Matt.

        In conclusion…well, I am not going to sum up my whole post, but I am going to remind people of the irony (if not hypocrisy) of accusing, rightly or wrongly, someone of committing an error that the accuser is also committing. To wit: Joseph accused Matt and his defenders of using “undefined scientific jargon” and “confused testimony” while using undefined and confused jargon himself: “mythological thinking.” Oh, the irony! I snicker everytime I think about it.

        P.S. The literal meaning of “mythological thinking” would be “ancient myth thinking.” Well, what does that mean? Maybe how ancient peoples thought when they formed myths? Perhaps “thinking based on ancient myth?” Even with this really generous translation, the phrase is still nonsensical and meaningless in the current context unless Joseph wants to argue that there is an ancient myth of an undefined healthy metabolism and Matt is basing his thinking on that. However, that argument is itself nonsense! In the end, I stick with my original assesment and say that the phrase is undefined and vacuous within the current context.

  52. Joseph on February 10, 2010 at 04:14

    A myth is a story relating things to one another in an interesting, idiosyncratic way. It is not “true” or “false” (or even “bad”): by its very nature it exists outside the realm of verifiable knowledge. You cannot disprove a myth (just like I cannot convince you that the Kitavans or a bunch of random, starch-eating Chinese actors are “unhealthy,” whatever that means).

    Karl Popper’s standard defines the difference between myth and science: the latter is falsifiable, meaning you can come up with evidence that will conclusively demonstrate whether it is true or not. Give me a quantifiable measurement of health, apply it to your Kitavans or Chinese actors under known circumstances, and you are on the road to isolating variables that might actually mean something.

    What Matt does is not science. That does not mean it is bad, that I disapprove, or even that his work does not have relevance for scientists (witness the idea it gave Stephan). But it does make his (and your) “save the world” rhetoric sound a bit out of touch to those of us whose experience does not match the HED experience (the HED myth, if you will). What makes our experience and our myths less valuable (to us, anyway) than yours? Until you demonstrate causation, as opposed to correlation (which is all I can find in Price so far, but I have not studied him extensively), you offer me no compelling reason to believe you rather than my own eyes.

    Hopefully this helps clarify what I mean by “myth.” Paleos who frequent Mark Sisson’s site will recognize “Grok” as a myth. For what it is worth, I think Matt’s myth is better than many that circulate, and I wish him (and you too, DML) well with it. Maybe I may even incorporate some of it into my own myth. That will not make it any more true, though.

  53. Stephen on February 12, 2010 at 18:58


    Just wondering if you’ve read Matt Stone’s latest, “Paleo for Population Control”. Has he completely lost his mind? I mean really lost his mind as in it’s time or the men in white coats to pay a visit. He gets in a few rude and sarcastic comments about you and other paleo bloggers. In a separate post today, which he has since deleted, he tries to get his readers to sign up and send in money for a pyramid scheme he is apparently involved in. Very strange…

    • Richard Nikoley on February 13, 2010 at 09:04

      Yea, I read the tripe. The guy is obviously trying to drum up attention by both commenting on paleo/LC blogs while simultaneously attacking them. Thus, I have a clear approach. He’s hereby banned from comments here (other bloggers are going to do likewise, but I can’t say who). I’m going through and deleting all his previous comments and removing any links to his blog.

  54. […] Richard Nikoley has a “Low Body Temperature” and “Edema?” You be … Share and […]

  55. Poor Poor Matt Stone | Free The Animal on March 26, 2010 at 20:31

    […] Fast forward to a couple of months back where suddenly, Matt Stone was all over the place in comments on various blogs I follow, and here too. He reached out to me and we began some correspondence. Well, then it resulted in this nonsense: Richard Nikoley has a “Low Body Temperature” and “Edema?” You be the judge. […]

  56. Eric on April 27, 2010 at 11:25

    I just heard an interview of Stone with Jimmy and was impressed. He advocated taking body temp readings every morning and adjusting food composition to raise it to as high as possible.

    I was only interested because low carb has only made me better fit, not fat with more energy. But I have not gotten “skinny” on low carb. So I liked the message that there might be more tweaking I can do with my diet to lose more. I just realized that I may be a bit Iodine deficient and am going to add kelp to my diet. Maybe this will do the trick.

    Stone seemed didn’t come off as dogmatic and was only asking people to be open. He said he likes to try different diets and was going to do the all milk diet for a year next. Good lord!

    Has Stone changed is tone in Jimmy’s podcast?

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.