Hacking Your Bacon IQ: The Bacon Centerfold

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Being a Bulletproof® Executive and all, I’m not one to read “Ladies Home Journal,”or “Men’s Journal” for that matter, where one can see all sorts of strangely groomed and waxed men primping with their expensive watches.  I’m more of a  Scientific American Mind kind of guy.

One morning, at the Hyatt Hotel in Denver, I sat down to a healthy, high-fat breakfast of poached eggs and avocado.  I selected these goods to fuel my brain before I went on stage in front of a few hundred people.  There, I spied a copy of Men’s Journal on a nearby table that was opened up to what can only be called a bacon centerfold containing glorious pictures of naked, gourmet bacon from some of the top bacon pimps in the country.

It’s a great review.  If you want to pick up some awesome bacon, this is a good place to start, but don’t forget Applegate Farms bacon, available at Whole Foods.  They were kind enough to reply to one of my earlier posts on bacon.

I wrote that real men (and women) cure their own bacon.  By that definition, I’m not a real man, but I plan to be one soon, thanks to this piece from Lifehacker.

The human body runs best on high-octane fuel, and the highest-octane food we have contains plenty of fat (refer to the Bulletproof Food section for a detailed explanation).  It also explains why I eat moderate amounts of bacon, yet have HDL (good) cholesterol levels of 86, which is higher than is theoretically possible for males on normal blood work charts.

Unburned bacon, from healthy animals, will NOT raise your cholesterol, or harm you in other ways.  If you burn it, however, you will create nitrosamines that are a corollary cause of cancer and migraines.  Overcooked bacon is also a dietary source of harmful, denatured protein.  Here’s the research to back that up.

Being a biohacker, I know that if you sprinkle even a small amount of an antioxidant (like vitamin C powder) on your bacon before you cook it, you block the formation of nitrosamines and small amounts won’t change the flavor.  The bacon in this picture is slightly blackened around the edges, which can mean that the bacon artist who made this used too much dextrose (sugars brown easily) or that the bacon is slightly burned.  Scared of nitrates or nitrite preservatives?  Vegetables like lettuce contain far more, on average, than bacon!

Only a bite of this juicy piece of bacon will satisfy my lust…for knowledge of course.  I must have some! 🙂

These high-end, bacon centerfold celebreties are beautiful and shapely, but I don’t think they can keep up with Jim, a bacon hacker who smokes the best bacon only 2 miles from my house.  It is with much regret that I will have to try them all to make sure.  To pursue the perfect bulletproof bacon, I will pair each sampling with my quest to brew the perfect cup of butter-enriched Bulletproof® coffee.  (Seriously.  I have a 6 pack and haven’t worked out in far too long…this is awesome!)

Direct links to the lovely bacon:


Special thanks to Herb Kim, founder of the Thinking Digital Conference, who recently coined the term “Bacon IQ.”  He’s also the guy who came up with the name “Bulletproof® Executive” several years ago on a flight from SFO to Heathrow as we sat across from each other in the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class section.

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By Dave Asprey

  • herbkim

    Dave, thanks so much for the shoutout! I’m so glad you’ve found the time & momentum to write up some of the great ideas you shared during that highly illuminating flight. Keep up the great work and again thanks for mention :-)Herb

  • Stacy

    I found out about your site thanks to your presentation at BIL2011. I’m loving reading your experiences with a “bulletproof” diet. Having read Taubes’ “Good Calories, Bad Calories” a couple years ago and loving it, I’ve been trying to shift the household diet in that direction for some time, though I am admittedly crap about eliminating my refined carbs in the dessert category.I’d be really curious about your opinions of “The Honey Revolution” by Fessenden – much like Taubes’ work in that it challenges common conceptions about food (specifically honey and sugars), the premise is that the particular *balance* of glucose/fructose in honey is metabolically optimal to the point where he recommends 2T right before bed. Sadly, his book is much shorter and less footnoted/referenced than Taubes’ work, but then it covers a somewhat smaller scope as well. If you’d be interested in a copy, I’d be happy to send you one for the price of hearing your opinions after checking it out.

  • Dave Asprey

    Hi Stacy – I’m totally interested in reading his book. I’m certain there’s an optimal balance of glucose/fructose and that time of day matters very much. Tim Ferriss did some groundbreaking biohacking on that when he found his implantable glucose monitor. Without having read the Honey Revolution, I’m a little skeptical. I’ve read dozens of honey promotion things over the years and tried honey in various programs many times. Yes, it has enzymes and trace minerals and propolis and pollen, and there are real arguments for taking each of those. However, honey will tell your body to store fat because it is sugar, and that’s what sugar does. It also fuels systemic fungal or yeast growth which saps energy and is tied to all kinds of degenerative diseases. The vast majority of people have yeast and fungus growth inside their bodies now, usually in their GI tract, but often on their skin, hair, nails, and elsewhere. Sugar from honey also fuels bacteria growth.When I sweeten, I use xylitol, which yeast can’t eat, and which stops bacteria from sticking to your teeth and throat. It stops cavities and reduces ear and throat problems, and tastes like sugar. Regular use stops osteoporosis. It doesn’t raise insulin. Compared to honey, the benefits are greater and the taste is pretty darn close. Stevia is your only other healthy alternative. Some people love it, but to met it tastes bitter (about 20% of people have that response.)

  • Stacy

    He also has optimistic things to say about Stevia. One of his prime points is night time brain function due to liver-metabolized fructose regulating rates of liver-metabolized glucose => glycogen. He touches on fructose’s connection to triglycerides and the adrenal/cortisol connections with fat storage reminiscent of Taubes’ work.Feel free to drop me a line at stacymckenna1@gmail.com with an address and I’d be happy to ship you a copy.

  • I stopped at Whole Foods yesterday and bought some Applegate Farms organic bacon. Thanks for the tip on vitamin C. I’ll add a pinch before the sizzling begins.

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  • Jeff Parsons

    How do you actually cure your own bacon? I’ve searched everywhere on the site/forum and can’t find an explanation of how to do it. Thanks.

  • Theo

    What do you mean when you suggest sprinkling antioxidant on the bacon before cooking it? What form of antioxidants do you typically use?

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