I don't want to take too much of your time. But going Keto for me has found me doing exactly what I feared I could do. I have been Paleo for five or six years and so has my wife. We have no kids at home so grains and junky carbs are not and issue or even a temptation. I am in the middle of doing the keto masterclass, which I am savouring because I have been making some mistakes.
I am 50 years old and work out regularly doing either mixed kettlebell workouts or if I do weight and resistance training at the moment I like to do whole body workouts 3 X a week and can mix in some cardio in between. I have kept fit most of my life, my goal is as I age to stay lean and keep mobile. Pretty simple goal.
We live in Perth in Western Australia so we have great weather and lots of sun. I work as a gardener in a private school, a job I love doing as I'm outside and moving all day, not as hard as say some sort of construction worker but that can happen on a given day just not every day.
Coming from eating paleo the transition for me has been pretty easy. As I went low carb and increased the fat I was eating my wife liked the sound of it so she hopped on board. She is doing great and in fact better than me. We aren't really that worried about measuring ketones at this stage, it has been more about getting the diet right.
My issue is, I love the food. For some reason it has made me hungrier. Stocking our fridge and cupboards I made sure that we had all we needed and I wanted to see what I liked to eat also.
So I have blown it on all sorts of things. I have had days where I ate too much thickened cream, one tub has 800 calories and it is so easy to eat. I have blown it on nut butter and blown it on cheese. I can't believe it.
At first it was wrapping my head around the fat content. I think I get it now. But I have put on body fat, which is so annoying. It's not a train wreck but I feel like I am in a rut now and it's hard to get out. I don't want to quit because I can see and have felt the benefits. It's just with the fat content and my physiology there seems to be no room for error.
I listen to your podcast and since listening I have gone to the ketogains website and worked out my macros. I was still tracking somewhat but some days I may have blown it by 5 or 6 hundred calories.
I have come so close to quitting as for me it seems to have been an easy way to get fat rather the leaner.
I'm not sure that you can help and not sure what else that I could tell you. Diet wise I have intermittent fasted for 3 or more years with differing protocols. Doing 16 - 20 hours is pretty comfortable. I workout in the mornings and often don't eat until lunch time or when I get home from work.
My diet hasn't changed too much except I have eaten cream, which I am now over. Adding more fat to my meals. Cooking in butter eating nuts and doing other keto style things. Apart from that my diet is still pretty primal. I love veggies. I have for years done a version of Mark Sisson's big ass salad. Which would be my daily staple. Evening veggies could be broccoli with brussel sprouts maybe some Kale and mushrooms. Also we do milk Kefir but I try to keep that to a minimum.
If you have any suggestions that would be great. Are there others that have had this sort of issue, going keto has made them fatter?
Really enjoy your podcast and thanks for all of the really useful info that you have put out. I have also read your books.
As part of restoring my own gut health, I've used prebiotic fibers in various doses based somewhat on Grace Liu's advice, and I'm curious if and when supplemental fiber would be beneficial for my daughter?
Again assuming that she started off at a disadvantage because of the antibiotics, it seems to follow logically that prebiotic fiber would help her gut bacteria develop, and increase her overall health and resilience.
Is that actually logical?
And are there any cautions? Is there a certain dose that's age-appropriate, or do I just slowly increase until she has digestive upset?
Should I mix fibers in order to feed a variety of bacteria, or are there certain fibers that are optimal for a young gut (i.e. what would a cavebaby be most likely to eat chew on for fun?).
In a previous Q&A, you talked about how muscle gain/hypertrophy is caused by calorie surplus and progressive overload. You also mentioned that gaining muscle is, without a doubt, easier if you have High testosterone. Calorie surplus and PO is easy, but how do I increase my testosterone? You mentioned that there are a number of different tactics that you can use?
My testosterone is not low, but definitely not high either. I'm 27 and my testosterone is 640 ng/dL and my free testosterone is 16.36
Since switching to keto I've noticed an increase in SHBG levels which brings down my free test. Total test has stayed high normal but was wondering how functional it is with the free portion bound up. DHEA is a bit low too. I feel great all in all but was just wondering what your thoughts are on that
Chicarones (pork rinds): are they a healthy snack?
I've heard you indirectly mention them on the podcast some time ago, but I wasn't able to infer whether your opinion is favorable or cautionary.
I'm an ultra-runner, and during peak training season will spend about 20 hours per week running. In the bad old days I would top off my calories with a gigantic bowl of cold cereal in the evening, or an enormous serving of lentils and rice. But then I got woke, started monitoring my blood sugar, and started looking for low-carb options to fuel. I'm already having two salads each day, huge amounts of veggies, and as much meat as I can stomach. So I'm just looking for some calories to fuel the movement.
So are pork rinds okay? I avoid the flavored variety - the bags I buy just say "fried pork skin" on the ingredients list, and I dip them in sour cream. The best part is how easy it is to get an extra 1000 calories. And the flavor.
Am I headed towards clogged arteries? Are pork rinds actually healthy in the way that bacon is healthy...?
Thanks!! Love the show.
After submitting my question about whether pork rinds are an acceptable snack, I realized that Robb's answer might be 'we'd need to see your lab work'...
So, in case it is relevant (and in case my question is selected for the show), here are some details. (I'd be glad to share the rest of the lab results, if they're relevant.) Thanks!
We follow Chris Kresser's Healthy Baby Code when introducing foods to our children, starting with purees, and graduating to solid foods overtime.
She's recently learned of "baby-led weaning" (completely unscientific aside: anything that starts with "baby-led" CAN'T be a good idea. Like "baby-led" bedtime, or "baby-led" TV-watching).
The theory, as I understand it, is that you present your kid with chunks of various foods, and let them choose what to eat based on their tastes, rather than forcing a puree of some kind that they may not prefer if they weren't being fed by you.
I know your kids are obviously Paleo, and we're curious how you navigated the introduction of foods and respect for their preferences as their tastes developed.
I have a question regarding an incessant post lunch coma regardless of diet.
I have experienced a mean bout of fatigue and extreme cold every day following lunch for much of my adult life. I’ve been on the paleo bandwagon for almost 10 years with marginal improvement in that area, and recently doing keto I’ve experienced only a little bit of relief. I still get almost debilitatingly fatigued and cold after eating lunch. If I have a sweet potato or a piece of fruit with lunch it’s definitely a lot worse, but even with my typical lunch of leftover protein and veggies or a version of Mark Sisson’s “big ass salad,” I experience a couple hours of wanting to get in bed after lunch. I follow the ketogains recommendations on electrolyte tracking and consumption of electrolytes. For breakfast I usually have some variation of 3-4 eggs.
I’m a 33 year old female, healthy weight, CrossFit 2-3 times/week. My recent lab work was excellent, low inflammatory markers, lipids and blood sugar markers all good. T3 was on the low end of normal, but all other thyroid measures WNL. I am mindful of circadian rhythms and do all I can to optimize sleep, however it isn’t ideal as I have a toddler and baby. I don’t think they can totally be blamed for the issue, though, as I have experienced this for many years. Thanks for your time and for the profound impact you’ve had on my life and the lives of many others.
Hi! Can you give a little help in the way of portion sizes. I have been eating Paleo/low carb (grain/dairy/legume free) for about a year and I feel like I have just recently stopped craving sugar (feels liberating). I am extremely active due to my work 5’9”, 145 lean male. In order to feel full my meals (3 or 4 a day) are absolutely giant. Usually I have focused on about 8-10oz of protein per meal and fill the rest with giant vegetable portions. Recently due to all that veg bloating the heck out of my belly I have switched to more like 16-20oz of protein and a bit less veg to cut down on the bloating. This feels better but It seems like a ton and I was wondering how this compares to others. Basically for every meal recently I throw 16-20oz’s of protein in a 10.5 inch or 12inch cast iron skillet, cook the protein with a fat and fill the pan to the top with veg. I thoroughly enjoy this but when I explain to some folks I put Down 16ish oz’s of beef/pork/fish/chicken they look at me like I will have colon cancer within the calendar year. I admit I am too darn active but I have no choice due to work then play. (light details but I work in the mountains above 8000ft and am self powered everywhere I go with a large pack). Sleep is descent, as I work emergency services and sometimes will be up all night working, but not the norm, tons of sun, weight is good I think, blood work appears good. Any suggestions on these portion sizes? I feel like I am going to eat myself into bankruptcy but need to feed the beast to keep my energy up. I tinker on/off with safe starches but I feel like these make me more hungry and I am more satisfied with higher protein. I have also played with carb night like refeeds per John kiefer when I am running a touch light weight/low energy which gives me a bit of a recharge (still avoiding grains/dairy/legumes during the re feed). I generally use fat for flavor per your suggestion as if I go big on fat it makes me kind of nauseous and get less than ideal bowel movements. Although it has been a year on paleo (coming off of 15years of vegetarianism) I feel like I have yet to find the optimal balance and am constantly tinkering. My body comp has changed drastically, as I have noticed I now have muscles and carry about 3-5 extra lbs I believe is muscle. Help me please, I Very much enjoy your work, you are a good person.
I'm a long time listener and a fan of both formats, but super glad that you guys decided to bring back the Q&A's! Each week, I look forward to listening to your Jedi-like paleo wisdom. But enough about you, let's talk about me. The vein of my existence since my late teens has been the occasional cold sore. I've been paleo/ckd for about 4 years now, which has decreased the occurrence from about 4-5 times a year to only once or twice a year. Still, I absolutely dread the day that one of those little suckers shows up, and I do everything in my power to prevent that from happening. Since arginine seems to be an antagonist to the virus, I do my best to avoid it all costs, and supplement with L-lysine as well. This brings me to my question, which pertains to creatine. I have been thinking about starting to supplement with creatine, but when doing research I realized that it is actually made up of the three specific amino acids: methionine, glycine, and -- yep, ariginine. Now I am worried that supplementing with creatine will cause a dreaded outbreak. Is this accurate or am overanalyzing? Would supplementing with lysine at the same time help prevent arginine dominance in the cells or is that nonsense? Any other tips on prevention? I've scoured the interwebs for an answer to no avail and would truly appreciate your input, Paleo-Wan-Kenobi. Thank you for what you do and keep up the good work!
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1. Enzymes and IBS? [3:32]
Talk to us about enzymes Robb. I've played with alot of different things over the years to help with IBS issues. For a long time I was devoted to probiotics but I never found any real consistent results with them. I took a stool test a year or so ago and discovered that literally none of the strains of probiotics I had so diligently taken (and paid for) were significantly present. Along the way anti fungals and anti parasitic medication (Dr Rx'd) helped calm the fire down below but it was enzymes that seem to seem to have made the final difference for me. Not only is the fire largely out I've really not had to keep up with taking enzymes like I did with probiotics. To be fair to probiotics they seem to help in the moment but I get the sense you have to take them daily which does not seem to be the case with enzymes. I should mention I know several people that have had the same experience with probiotics and enzymes. My question then is what is the mechanism at work? I get that enzymes help break down foods but why would that help with IBS symptoms and furthermore why would those symptoms be largely gone after only 6 months or so of using them but not taking them daily even?
2. Squat Pooping and Toilet Training [10:42]
Hey Robb and Nicki!
Loving the new Q&A format! You have done such a great job educating the public on what to put in one end of their bodies that I want to take a moment to talk about how to get the most out of what comes out the other end!
I am a first-time dad of a now 16-month-old, so that means we're starting to approach potty training. As we all know, the "natural, paleo way" of pooping is getting into that deep squat and letting fly. It's so obvious to me that this is the way we're meant to poop. I see it every morning: my little girl suddenly stops playing with her toys and drops into that ass-to-grass squat that my jiujitsu hips will never do again. By the time that thousand-yard stare creeps into her eyes, I've already got one hand on my SLS-free baby wipes.
Every parent has seen that, and yet every parent in this hemisphere insists on trying to get their kid going from this squat position to sitting on a porcelain platform with his/her feet dangling. The toddler naturally resists with a, "what the hell do you expect me to do from here?" look. Frustration ensues, but poop doesn't. It seems like transitioning our toddlers from diapers to seated toilets is yet another mismatch of nature in our modern civilization.
For adults, it's easy to make a homemade platform or buy a Squatty Potty / similar product. But what's the plan for tots? I've considered setting up a kitty litter box in the bathroom. The mother-in-law is almost certainly going to lose her shit (heh heh) but maybe that's the price of being the world's #2 Dad!
Would love to hear your Paleo Poop Solution for how we are Wired to Shit.
3. Travel Eating Tips? [14:30]
Got your masterclass and it was paramount for the achievement of the keto sunset. 8 weeks in, 15 lbs down and I feel amazing!
However I am quite a foodie and will be heading to Paris for 10 days in June to vacation with my brother and dad. I will be staying at a hotel and definitely don’t wanna miss out on real French croissants or pastries... I also am from Brazil and while I can tell the benefits of keto long term, I would not be able to go visit and skip out of eating fruits, which is most of my diet while I’m down there.
so question: Should I still try my best to keep up with calories/macro count while traveling and/or supplement with exogenous ketones (do they even work?) or should I not worry about it until I get back home? Am I gonna feel absolutely awful while getting back on carbs? On that note, maybe I should re-introduce carbs before I even go?
Appreciate your guidance on the issue.
4. BJJ + Recurring Staph Infections [18:39]
Dear Robb + Nicki,
Over the last 12 year period, I've made numerous attempts to train BJJ–each attempt ending in a staph infection. My first time was about 12 years ago, where I got a good year of training in. This was punctuated by a pretty bad staph infection that flared back up a few more times shortly after. 8 years later, I went for it again...this time getting a staph infection after one week of training. Most recently, I got 6 months in before getting another. As you can imagine, every doctor I've ever talked to thinks I just need more antibiotics, or that I have some secret colony of staph living in my nose. This approach has obviously not been successful for me. It also fails to address why I only get them while training, and never in the periods in between. While hygiene may have been to blame the first time, I was pretty careful the last two times, even if it wasn't 100% perfect. I had a funky sleep schedule before my most recent occurrence, which I think may have contributed. Some more details for you...I'm 33, in good shape, otherwise healthy, eat well, and sleep well. I've always lifted weights outside of BJJ but nothing crazy in terms of volume. My question for you is: If this was happening to you, where would you start? What would you be looking at? I have considered seeing a functional medicine practitioner as I've wondered if there are some bigger picture immune issues at play. I appreciate any thoughts you have on this– I don't want my BJJ career to be over so soon. Thanks!
I'm 29 and was diagnosed as on the autism spectrum just two years ago. This would have been considered as asperger's in the past. I've been primarily paleo (ice cream is really good) for the better part of six years, but after running my DNA through Found My Fitness, I'm wanting to address my dietary choices from a more personalized approach, including finding the most optimal choices to address some of the occasional stressors I feel associated with being on the spectrum - anxiety, depression, and general cognitive/mood disregulation.
The most researched dietary intervention seems to be a gluten free, dairy free diet, with a few studies looking into keto. However, each study I've seen is only looking at kids as the subjects and typically with more severe symptoms than what I experience. Keto seems to be a promising approach, but is there any reason why this would be different for an adult? I tried keto for about a month a year ago but immediately found my cognitive performance drop. While I know my macro amounts were appropriate (used ketogains calculator), I know now that I didn't incorporate the electrolyte component. Could this account for my initial struggles with it? Is there anything else someone on the spectrum should consider when attempting keto? Supplements, macro ratios, etc.? I'll include more details about me below, but thank you for your time in reading question and all of your work.
29 years old
6' 4'', 240 lbs
CrossFit 3-4x per week
Sleep 6-7 hours a night (we have a 1 year old that thinks the day begins at 3:30am)
Polymorphisms of concern from FoundMyFitness: MTHFR (which seems to be common in those on the spectrum), FTO (multiple SNPs), APEO3/4 (multiple SNPs)
Live in Minnesota where sun exposure is only frequent enough where your skin doesn't freeze
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1. ATP Supplements? [1:35]
Do you deal with or see anybody taking the new ATP supplements ( Peak ATP)? I have seen them as a pre workout supplement and also for use with chronic fatigue patients ( they also use NADH as ATP precursor ) Thanks
2. Multivitamin: Powder Or Pill? [4:16]
If a person chooses to have a multivitamin, is it better in pill form, or powder (drink with water)?
I ask because fat Soluble vitamins are absorbed in the presence of fat. It would seem drinking a powder in, for example, a litre of water over several hours might mean that the vitamins may not be absorbed as well (no fatty meals in between to help absorb said vitamins)
Where a pill could be taken with a meal or with a little fat?
3. Individualizing Your Diet [10:09]
I have watched the change in dietary recommendations over the years and have tried Paleo, Keto and higher carb diets. I have seen really good results on low carb diets but they seem hard to sustain due to high activity at work. I have also heard Robb say he has had good results eating beans/legumes. I am considering trying to eat a diet that focuses on whole foods rather than macros. My question related to this is, "Have you found that the quality of food is more important than the macronutrients for overall health?" Not that macros aren't important but you can manipulate the macros to a Keto style diet with low quality food but it seems that would be counterproductive.
4. Thoughts On Collagen Protein PowdersSupplements? [17:57]
I have a question on a point you made in the Keto Masterclass, Module 4. You said that collagen (specifically collagen protein powders) are great supplements and can have many benefits, but that the protein content should not count towards your daily protein intake. I have been making and eating a collagen concoction (Great Lakes Collagen Hydrolysate) for years as a meal (2nd) in between lunch (1st) and dinner (3rd) that I have been counting as a third of my protein intake. I understand that collagen protein is not the same as animal protein, but can you expand on this a bit. I remember reading something along the lines of it lacking completeness, not having optimal ratios of amino acids and having some that are unessential, but have I really been short-changing myself on protein and should I replace this with animal protein?
5. Body Refuses Ketosis in High Stress Job [23:16]
Hello Robb, I have a question regarding the body naturally kicking itself out of ketosis in high stress work environments.
I have been a fat burner now for over a year and have been immensely successful. I have lost 15 pounds, gained muscle, rid myself of candida, my vision has improved, my alopecia hair loss has gone away. I feel like i am functioning the way I should. I also run faster, jump higher, and train better than I ever have in my life. I am 29 years old.
I work as a Stewardess on private luxury yachts. So I live and work onboard. With no guests onboard I maintain a healthy balanced routine. When we have guests onboard I am working 14-16 hour days on my feet running around and up and down stairs constantly. This can go from 1 week up to 5 weeks with no days off. I certainly don't exercise during this time apart from light stretching and Nidra yoga. It is a high stress environment both mentally and physically. It seems that my body just refuses to stay in ketosis despite my dietary efforts. I crave fruit, gain weight, gain water weight, and don't feel satiated ever. I am assuming this is because my body goes into fight or flight mode.
My question is if there is anything I can do to trick the system into staying into ketosis? Or should I just give into the body's desire for glucose and introduce fruit and perhaps sweet potato into the diet and lower my fat intake. I guess I don't want to be pumping myself full of fat if my body doesn't want to use it for fuel. This is a constant occurrence in my job (given I haven't worked full time in the last 8 months). I am potentially going into a busy mediterranean season and would like to maintain my physique and be gentle to my body considering the circumstances.
Any insight you might have would be hugely appreciated. Thank you so much.
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1. Ancestral Case For Salt Supplementation? [0:53]
You've recently been talking a lot about salt and electrolyte supplementation and I like to look at things in an ancestral context. Did pre-agricultural peoples supplement with salt somehow? I do know that the Hopi Indians in northern Arizona had a ceremonial "Salt Trail" into the Grand Canyon and I assume that they were able to retrieve salt from geologic deposits, but the amount of salt that feels optimal for me seems like it would be hard to attain in prehistoric times in many parts of the world. Are there other examples of this besides the Hopi?
2. Resistant Starch On Keto? [11:48]
Hi there! I'm about 2 and a half weeks in to a ketogenic diet (following the Keto Masterclass) and feeling pretty good. I've been trying to figure out how to add in some resistant starch for overall gut health without pushing carb levels too high. I think I would try tapioca starch first - I live in Asia and that's what's most readily available. According to nutrition facts online, a 1 oz. serving of tapioca starch has 6 grams of carbs. Would this number contribute at all to my overall carb count for the day, or does this factor out because of the fact that most of it is resistant to digestion? Hope my question makes sense. Thanks for your time!
3. Optimal Fructosamine Range? [16:39]
I've heard you recommend checking fructosamine to help triangulate glycation and see what's happening with blood sugar, but I can't seem to find any references for an optimal fructosamine range.
I recently did some blood work and had a fasting glucose of 80 (mg/dL), A1c of 5.6, and fructosamine of 250 (umol/L). I have been experimenting with a glucometer recently and my average blood glucose based on dozens of readings during carb testing is in the upper 90's, so I am thinking my A1c looks artificially high due to red blood cells living longer. Curious what you think of this, and what I can take away from the fructosamine value of 250.
For context: I am a 29-year-old male, 160 lbs, between 10-12% bodyfat and have been eating a mostly low-carb paleo diet for the past year, recently gravitating closer to carnivore.
I appreciate you and Nicki and all the work that you do!
4. Finding Time For Writing a Book? [22:34]
I'm a big fan. Thanks for your life's work that filters out the vast ocean of information out there for a smarter living. I'm so glad you are doing what you do reminding me to sit back to look at the big picture of everything in life. In your last few podcasts, you mentioned that you are again working on publishing more books. Congrats and I can't wait!
I've been trying to write my first book. It has been such a slow process. It has been 4 months and I'm able to get in about 6000 words or so. Holy cow it is such like a text book but I've got to start from somewhere! The book has a mix of East meets West medicines for those undergoing cancer treatments. Needless to say, the topic is not easy and there is so much development out there every week that it is hard to keep up. I'm a full-time oncology pharmacist. My husband also has a full-time job and soon will go back to school while working for the next 2 years. We have four kids ages 5, 7, 9 and 10 so their activities are endless Mondays through Sundays on top of their normal school work, church, and of course we have to add Vietnamese school in there because all others are not enough! I started out with trying to get a few words in during my lunch hour, but it seems that it takes me a good 15-20 min to get into a good writing mode but then I have to go back to work before I get much further into the book. If my kids have a long 1-2 hour activity, I can get more done then while waiting for them but I then I feel guilty for not paying attention to them. I also exercise daily, either before work or during lunch, whichever works out for the day. The past 2 months, I've been exercising during lunch rather than working on my book because I feel my brain needs a break from thinking all day long. Then I find myself slacking off for whatever excuse because, honestly, I'm just exhausted mentally and physically. So that's my background story.
My question simply put, how do you do it? I feel the need to write this book because I know it will help so many people going through cancer treatments particularly clarifying the effectiveness/safety on herbal products and the big hot marijuana, so it's almost like a calling; leaving a mark on this earth before I die. There is a war inside me between fulfilling this calling vs taking care of my health (recently discovered I have Hashimoto's - oh boy that's for another day) vs being a good mother, wife, sister (brother has Hypokalemic Periodic Paralysis; also another story for another day), daughter. At first I set out a goal to finish this book in 2 years but maybe not until 5 years. Worst yet, it will never be finished. I'm starting to doubt myself that I can climb this Mount Everest of mine. Any suggestions will be great. Thanks for reading this.
PS: Hi Nicki! My husband used to work at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf decades ago and I don't think they roast their coffee beans either! :D Cute story.
I've recently become a newly minted nurse practitioner and am starting a job in an endocrinology clinic in a few weeks where I will be managing mostly type II diabetes and thyroid disorders. First, thank you for your work. 8 years ago you inspired my interest in fats, carbs, exercise, and all things hormonal and it is very unlikely I would have landed here without your influence. My mom read the "Paleo Solution" after I mentioned your name and effectively reversed her type II diabetes through diet, exercise, and a sprinkle of metformin (which she has since discontinued). The clinic I'll be working in serves a population with low health and nutrition literacy that typically follow the standard american diet. As an example, one of my colleagues expressed that she would consider it a win if she could teach some of her patients that mountain dew is not actually considered juice (this is an extreme example, but you get the picture). I've been working as a bedside nurse for 6 years so I am well aware of the shortcomings of conventional medicine and the reluctance of patients to change long held behaviors. One of the reasons I've been drawn to diabetes care is that diabetes 2 is so amenable to diet and lifestyle change that ideally the pharmacological approach need only play a supplemental and transient role. My question is this: What would you consider effective strategy for fostering health literacy and behavior change in a population such as this? Also: What would you consider the lowest hanging fruit in terms of behavioral change to positively affect outcomes in diabetes?
Thank you for your time, your work, and your example
What is your perspective on oxalates? Is there any merit to what people like Dr William Shaw, Sally Norton, and Elliot Overton say about the evils of oxalates? or can we all keep eating spinach and almonds? Could this be the explanation as to why some people who go full carnivore benefit from eliminating all greens?
Robb and Nicki, I am definitely one of the original 6 listeners and credit you many times for changing my life and educating me to the point that I helped other people change their lives. Ok I am 62 in very good shape and have a smoking hot younger wife that I would live to make it to our 50th wedding anniversary, which will make me 107. So the question is what test do I do now to make sure I have the best chance to achieve this goal and hopefully correct if something is wrong now?
Thank you for the podcast its great. I know your very busy but I was wondering how you would suggest approaching a healthy diet for olympic weightlifting? I'm 35, 5ft9in 185lbs and around 18% body fat( this is a rough estimate using ketogains website). I want to compete but not looking to sacrifice my health, and would like to lift into my old age. You mentioned that you competed in powerlifting when you were younger and I thought maybe you would have some insight into the subject. I currently intermittent fast roughly 14hrs everyday. My diet is protein from variety of meats,carbs from lots of fresh veggies, fats from nuts, coconut and olive oil. No sugars unless family holiday. My goal is to lose some body fat but maintain my strength. I tried to go full keto, no carbs, and my strength plummets. Thanks again, sorry for such a long question.
Thanks for answering our questions! When I eat low carb, I tend to wake up at 3am and have a hard time falling back asleep. However, if I have some carbs (i.e. a small bowl of rice or a sweet potato) during dinner, I generally sleep through the night and wake up naturally a little after 6am. I usually go to bed around 10pm, and eat dinner around 6pm.
The problem is, when I eat carbs during dinner, I gain weight overtime. Eating low carb helps me lose weight. Is there a reason for the interrupted sleep eating low carb? I searched online and some people say it’s due to noradrenaline. I don’t know what that is and I am wondering how i can improve my sleep while eating low carb? Thank you very much for your knowledge!
I've been on and off a keto diet for the past five years or so and when in Ketosis feel fantastic. I train muay thai and on days that I train I tend to up my carb intake as I just feel better throughout training, similar to you with jiu jitsu. On Sundays however I do tend to go off the rails a bit and find myself on Monday down around the 0.2 mmol/L level and then by Tuesday night/Wednesday morning back up any where between 1.0-2.4 mmol/L where I stay for the rest of the week. I have in the past gone several months at a time on a 30-50g carb per day diet on multiple occasions, haven't done so the past year and half or so. I've been hearing a lot lately that this quick fluctuation between low carb to moderate/high carb intake can be very bad for you. Can you help shed some light on this, am I doing long term damage to my body by fluctuating?
Over the past 7 months, I've had great success following the Keto Masterclass. As far as weight-loss goes, I've lost about 42 lbs, and lowered my BF% from about 28% to about 19%. For the first 12 weeks, I ate at a 20% deficit, without a break. I weighed and measured all my food. I made sure I had my electrolytes dialed in, eating lots of potassium and magnesium rich foods, supplementing Na+ as well as Mg+ too. During that time, I was lifting 4x per week as well as a couple (15-20 min) interval workouts per week. Other than that, I was doing some light walking and playing with my kids.
Towards the end of that initial run, I started to get kind of bitchy (I'm a 45-year old male), and never really experienced the stable energy, or deep, solid sleep that a lot of people mention - two things I was really hoping for.
Recently, I have been alternating 4-week cuts, followed with 2-week "full diet breaks" (a'la Lyle McDonald) at maintenance. During those, carb sources have been clean, paleo foods. Coming off of each of these, I feel better and maintained a stable weight throughout. I was normally back in ketosis 48-72 hours after switching my carb and fat macros back up, and both times (so far) it has restarted weight loss. Still not great sleep, but I attribute that to having young kids (2 & 6).
After a recent DEXA scan, I was recalculating my macros with the Ketogains calculator (I'm 162# and 19% BF), and it dawned on me that the deficit it was recommending (-15%) was put me BELOW my Basal Metabolic Rate by about 105 calories, per day. For reference, I used the "sedentary" activity level and don't add back in workout calories.
So, to my question(s)...
Understanding that the calculator is based off the Katch-McCardle formula, basically giving a statistical norm, but BMR is the calories we need to maintain vital physiological functions, what are your thoughts on recommended deficits putting one below their BMR and what are the longer-term implications of extended diets doing so? Would it be better to just eat AT BMR on rest days and add back in some (all? a portion?) workout calories (protein & fat) on training days, while still being below TDEE?
It seems to me that BMR should be an absolute floor when it comes to caloric intake - I'm wondering if the aggressive deficits created some diet fatigue and hormonal disruption for me.
Love the podcast and anything the Wolf Pack puts out. Thanks for everything!
Long time follower and really appreciate the work you're doing. I wish I had known about Keto and Paleo when I was younger; I feel my athletic performance could have propelled me to the next level. Either way, I'm happy to have it in my life today as it keeps me thin and healthy. Your Keto Masterclass has been instrumental in guiding me through my Keto/Paleo journey. Thank you!
I've been very interested in the low carb diet for 10+ years now and it started with Gary Taubes. Gary Taubes is famous for saying that calories don't count and in my anecdotal experience, they don't. I must stress that since it works for me, I'm completely happy with the results. However, when trying to speak intelligently about Keto and low carb, I'm trying to bridge a gap from Gary to Chris Kresser's podcast with Joe Rogan last week. On Joe Rogan Chris said that you *must* run a caloric deficit to lose weight. Now I am really confused!
I'm an engineer and I've taken several thermodynamics courses, so from an energy balance equation I understand that the human body cannot defy thermodynamic principles. But obviously our metabolism is much more complex than an energy in- energy out black box. Furthermore, energy in-energy out does not feel right for a number of reasons such as, for instance, energy expended drinking cold water is not in this equation (that is your body warming the cold water up), energy that is never consumed but rather part of a "defecation event", etc. I have eaten what I perceived to be a major energy surplus on a ketogenic diet and have still lost weight. My caveat there is that I wasn't weighing foods, so I cannot really know.
My apologies if you've already answered this question, but I could not find it on your blog or searching your website. I'm hoping you can point me to a study, a white paper, a text or some reliable information that will answer the question of who's right- Gary Taubes or Chris Kresser.
Sooooo, it's been a little while since I have been devouring each and every single podcast episode and I apologize. My own business focus has put me more into the writing podcast genre recently (but I see Tim Grahl on your interviewee list!?). :-)
So, my question: have you guys laid out a protocol for extreme nutrient buildup for before and after a scheduled surgery? This would be for someone who is not really paleo: still eats gluten and mostly just avoids sugar and junky foods. So they are not yet on the "rawr sardines nom nom!" bandwagon, sadly.
But if they have a willingness to make some changes to ensure they are in a better place to prepare to recover from their surgery (jaw replacement, if it matters), what would you 'prescribe' to them? I'm family, so if this guidance comes from an outside authority that could make the critical difference in their enthusiasm.
P.S. Love to all you guys. You're doing the 'chop the wood, carry the water' and have been for SO LONG I bow in respect. Hope to see you again soon at some rando paleo conference.
Robb and Nikki thanks for all that you do. You, your books and podcasts have changed my life. I have done two days a week of CrossFit for just over 2 years and in spite of the amount of rest I get I still end up with knee, shoulder, wrist and elbow injuries and pain. I have recently decided to pause my CrossFit subscription and have replaced it with the three days a week 5 by 5 routine recommended by the ketogains guys. I did your keto masterclass and I'm at 7.5% body fat and try to keep my macros on point with the ketogains recommendations. What do you think about just doing the 5x5 home workout alone? I do like the group element of the CrossFit class but at my age (52) I can't seem to go for long without injury or constant pain. I feel like the 5x5 program at home is more manageable as I can control the velocity/intensity without so much emotional effort. What are your thoughts regarding this path?
Nice word on fasting. You have had a ton of discussions about Keto. My why for Keto is TONS of chronic disease and brain disease in my family tree. After hearing Dr. Perlmutter and then reading his book “Brain Grain” a year ago I decided to give Keto a go. Shortly there after you offered the Keto Masterclass. Been doing it ever since. I won’t really know if I hit my “why” for another 15-25 years when I’m in my 70s - 80s. So keep on trucking’.
My wife and I own 1201 CrossFit here in Elkins, West Virginia. We have TONS of chronic disease and obesity here. One topic that would be helpful for us is setting macros for people. We have seen people go on severe caloric deficits and get frustrated when their bodies hold on to the weight. And in one case, we have seen the opposite where a guy lost 120 pounds on Keto eating 3000 cal/day. But others struggle to loose because they probably just aren’t set right calorically. You occasionally mention a “mild caloric deficit”. I would love to hear how you determine that. Note also that we have an InBody 530 that gives a pretty good Base Metabolic Rate. We are thinking people should be about 500-1000 Cal above that BMR. Do you agree?
I have both of your books, been listening to your podcast for years and even heard you speak over at the MadLab group. Always enjoy your perspective.
I have a question about watching TV at bedtime. Now I've heard and read over and over how this is a terrible thing - the light penetrates the pineal gland, suppresses melatonin production and prevents you from falling asleep, etc. I'm just wondering if this is one of those hard and fast rules. So many things are generally good, but you have to make sure they work for you individually. I've gotten into a bad habit of watching TV when I go to bed. But I watch it to put me to sleep. When I don't have it on, the silence is deafening so to speak. My brain won't shut off. But as soon as I turn on Frasier I'm out in less than 5 minutes, almost like it shuts off my brain. Am I just fooling myself? Is my brain really not shutting off and doing what it needs to do because of the light? I don't feel like I sleep terribly but I also don't wake up refreshed most of the time. But I also have thyroid and other hormonal issues and I think those can affect sleep as well. Anyway, I'd love to get your opinion on this. I've had a really hard time breaking this habit.
I am a testicular cancer survivor and due to operations and intense chemotherapy have hypogonadism (chronic low T). Over the past year, I have gotten my health under control, lost about 80 pounds using Paleo/keto as well as getting my T levels regulated through TRT. Without replacement my levels were in the low 200s. With it I am about 500-650.
My Dr tells me that it is healthy to use TRT. I assume it's healthier than being chronically low. Do you think so? What are some natural ways to raise T?
I am a 63 yo male in pretty decent shape. Except for a nagging hip injury I feel great. The hip doesn’t seem to have caused any loss in mobility or function (I can back squat 250lbs.). I consider myself to be Paleo since 2011 and recently have thrown in some keto and intermittent fasting. I’m wondering because of the hip and my age if I should be lifting crazy heavy (going for new PBs and competing at local CrossFit gyms) or should I be lifting lighter (and safer?) with more reps?
Do you have any guidelines for people “wiser” than 60?
Should I be modifying programming or diet because I'm over 45?
Now for some context:
I'm trying to dial in all of the factors that are important for longevity (health span). To be more precise I want to:
- Retain or put on as much lean mass as possible (difficult)
- Get below 15% bodyfat and stay there (difficult)
- Maintain or increase mobility (doable)
- Get good sleep (I'm good on this one)
- Community (just joined a CrossFit gym)
I'm 47 and what you would call "skinny fat". It seems impossible to get my body fat below 22%. I've been doing Paleo for about 6 years (about 70/30), tried keto (although I think I went overboard on the fat), and last year did 6 weeks of PSMF (that was very tough). Only thing that got me below 20% was the PSMF but its not sustainable and over the holidays gained all the weight back.
I try to stay abreast of the science and avidly consume your work along with Peter Attia, Chris Masterjohn, Chris Kresser, etc. I am also known to browse through PubMed on my leisure time. All that to say that I'm eager to learn and I am as informed as my capabilities allow on these topics.
I have been lifting 2 - 3 times a week throughout and try to limit my cardio to short intense stints. I had been trying to do the "minimum viable dose" thing but results are not anything to write home about plus its kind of lonely :)
Recently I have seen several folks online talk about how if you're over 40 you need to "do things differently". Invariably there is a pitch for an eBook or a class at the end of the story.
I get good sleep
I do strength training 2 - 3 times a week
I'm eating "mostly" paleo
But I just can't get consistently below the damn 20% body fat mark!
Should I be doing something different because I'm approaching 50?
Really appreciate all the work you are doing. You are a huge inspiration to me and hopefully one day, I'll be able to make as big a difference as you have in people's lives.
Just a quick question, what's the minimum number of hours someone should fast if they just want to maintain good health? I typically fast about 12 hours and I have heard you mention that its a good fasting duration in one of your podcasts. Is this enough if I just want good metabolic health?
I’ve noticed that some nutrition experts detour from their mission of nutritional health seemingly to promote the ingestion of certain alcoholic beverages. In your opinion, why is this done since according to the WHO alcohol is a known carcinogen sometimes leading to esophageal, stomach, breast cancer, etc. Apparently there is “no safe amount” to avoid its’ effects so why is it promoted?
Thank you for your wonderful contributions to our collective (and personal) health. Your teachings left a lasting, highly beneficial imprint on by health and on by wellbeing. A part of that was quitting smoking. As a former smoker, what can I do now to minimize the risks of cancer? Since there are millions of former smokers in the U.S. alone, your answers will certainly appeal to a large audience. Thank you so much. All the best
First I wanted to say thank you for all the valuable info you provide. You are one of the few voices I fully trust because you always follow the evidence and are willing to change your mindset if the evidence leads you somewhere new.
With that, I have heard you say on the podcast that you eat a lot of blue diamond smokehouse almonds (I love those) and it got me wondering. I have tended to avoid them in favor of the blue diamond almonds that are roasted without any added oil, because the smokehouse say that they may be roasted in canola or other vegetable oil. I was curious your thoughts on this. I tend to totally avoid vegetable/canola oil whenever possible, but I assume the amount of oil you are actually ingesting with these almonds would be low. What are your thoughts? If everything is dialed in and you’re feeling good, do you not worry about the minimal amount you’d be getting from this? Or have you seen evidence that it takes more than this little bit of oil that the almonds would be roasted with to really create a problem?
I was wondering what your opinions were on stopping or reducing arterial plaque buildup. Isn't that one of the big reasons were obsessed with things like cholesterol as a society? I know at one point Dr. Rocky Patel had stated he had significant reversal in his carotid artery after a few years of carb cycling (carb nite). I know this question is absolute minefield of personal variability. At age 40, and a lifetime of combining things like shitty high omega 6 oils and highly process carbs, my new goal is to enjoy retirement. My blood pressure has crept back up since falling off the low carb/carb cycling wagon at my new job. I don't really think CVD is in too many branches of my family tree, but I always excelled at bad lifestyle choices. I would love to hear what your current thoughts are on this.
I started following you in 2011 and absolutely love your work. The more suggestions I take from you, the better my health gets!
New listener who absolutely loves your show so I figured I'd write in and try and get my question answered!
I'm 5'11, 180 lbs, 19% body fat (give or take), and I'm looking to improve my physique. I would describe my look as just a bit more muscular than skinny fat. I go to the gym 3 times a week for strength training, and do light cardio once or twice a week just to stay active. My goal physique would be to add a little bit of muscle and trim some fat. I don't necessarily need peeling abs, but I'd like to look more athletic than I do now if that makes sense.
What rep ranges do you recommend for someone who just wants to look a little more toned and athletic (in my head I picture what Matthew Mcconaughey looks like)? Or do you have any recommended exercises or routines that I should follow? I know that diet is key for any kind of body composition changes, but I feel like I have that down pat. I just want to get my workouts in line with what my goals are. Maybe I'm overthinking things?
Hello! I just love listening to you both. Robb, you have the most well-placed F-bombs. Anyway, I feel like I have my diet where it needs to be. I have been paleo since 2012 but keto for the past 6 months. I enjoy exercising but I do it from home. I have 5-50lb dumbells, a bench, and a pullup bar. Do you know of a good lifting-from-home program or book? I have exhausted my own expertise and would like to change it up. Thanks!
Hey Robb I really appreciate all that you have contributed to society. I recently finished your book Wired To Eat and I have a question in regards to fat and protein. How do I test my reactivity with different fat and protein sources? How many grams of fat or protein do I test with?
I'm 45, 165 lbs, 6'1". I workout 3 times a week (hand weights and HIIT). Lean frame and lean muscle which is typical for me (although I'd like to add more muscle). Minimal body fat thanks to a low-carb Paleo diet (down from 212 lbs). However, when I count up my daily calories, I'm always short of the recommended for my age/weight at around 1500 calories. I eat to satiation at three meals a day. I never feel hungry and could even skip meals with no problem. I snack on EPIC Bites, but that's it. My question is: should I try to force myself to eat more (even though I don't want to) to hit my calorie recommendation, or listen to my body and not worry about it?