Transcript – Adam Kosloff: Low Carb Diets – #7
Dave: Today’s cool fact of the day is that there are 2 alkaloids in coffee beans. One of them is caffeine, the one we’ve all heard off. The other one is called trigonelline, and there’s twice as much trigonelline as there is caffeine in coffee. When you roast the beans, this other alkaloid turns into nicotinic acid, also known as niacin. It turns out when you burn nicotine, you get nicotinic acid, also known as niacin. That’s probably why the tradition of coffee and cigarettes going well together got established, because they both create the same substance that helps your brain feel better. Niacin is a b vitamin. I’m not saying smoking is good for you. I’ve never smoked. What I’m saying that niacin is good for you. It’s interesting that coffee and cigarettes both have niacin component in them.
You’re listening to episode 7 of Upgrade Itself Radio. This Dave from the Bulletproof Executive blog, talking about how you can upgrade your mind, your body, and your life to levels you never thought possible. Today we’re going to be hearing from a journalist named Adam Kosloff about low-carb diets. Adam runs a website called why-low-carb-diets-work.com. He’s going to be discussing how his thoughts about diet and intrusion have evolved over the years, and some tips to make low-carb diets more effective, if that’s the path you choose. We’ll also discuss exercise recommendations, how to stops carb cravings, and a lot more.
It’s important to think about this not as how to lose weight, but actually how to be higher performance as an entrepreneur, just as a human being. By shifting your carb intake lower, and doing it in an intelligent way, you becoming a higher performing human, not just a weight lifter, or weight loss person.
Co-host: Today we’ve got a guy named Adam Kosloff, from the website why-low-carb-diets-work.com. He’s a journalist. He went to Yale. He worked a screen writer for a while, and now he writes about nutrition. As his website says, why low carb diets work. He’s written over 30,000 articles for the web. Now, he’s going to talk to us about those same topics. Adam, thanks for coming on man.
Adam: Thank for having me. I appreciate it.
Co-host: We talked a little bit, before the show, about how you get into this. The people obviously weren’t listening on our conversation. Could you just recap a little bit about how you got interested in nutrition and health?
Adam: Yeah sure, it’s a twisted journey. I went to Yale. I studied geophysics. I was like, I’m going to ban all this. I’m going to go to Los Angeles, and be a screen writer, because I thought that would be fun. It was fun also hellaciously harder than I expected. I did get to write for some TV shows. Meanwhile I had to work a day job for a lot of that. That was doing this web writing for hire. I ended up writing all these articles. 2008 I read Gary Taubes’ Good Calories, Bad Calories.
It totally threw me for a loop, and it made me want to just get into this and use my web writing powers to spread the word. It’s one thing to write an episode of woody woodpecker. Really that’s ultimately just selling corn syrup to kids. I figured there’s a higher calling here, so I’m trying to do my small part break the grip of the USDA food pyramid.
Co-host: Let’s dive right into it. If somebody was eating a 2000 calorie diet, and one group was eating 70% other diets, from carbs and whole grains, and all those heart healthy things that the government recommends, and the other groups is eating lots of artery clogging saturated fat and bacon, why would the bacon group … Obviously they’re going to be happier, because bacon tastes amazing.
Adam: [Crosstalk 03:51] calories from it though. Then you’re going to be sick of it.
Co-host: Why would be the bacon group be healthier? Why would restricting carbs be a healthy thing to do?
Adam: It’s interesting. It depends, it might or might not. If your metabolism has not been destroyed by sugar possibly, you could be just as fine on a whole wheat diet as you would on a low-carb diet. For people who are metabolically sensitive, this is the stupid over simplified answer. When you eat too many carbs, too much sugar, it’s going to mess with your insulin levels and cause you to store calories as fat, instead to burn them off. The idea us when you lower carbohydrate diet, you’re eating a lower insulin diet, which mens that you’re not getting the calories stuffed into your fat tissue, but your actually able to burn them of.
The other part of this goes a long with people that [inaudible 04:52] , that sounds technical, but there reality is bacon’s going to give me a heart attack. Then that is also false. Basically bacon is saturated fat. We all believe saturated fat is going to give you heart attacks and kill you. Absolutely, the research doesn’t support that.
Co-host: One of the questions I hear a lot is basically since people have placed an overemphasis on calories for a while, it sounds like, and how they’ve acted like calories are all the same. Then there’s the reciprocal to that where people are saying that calories don’t count at ll. Is it possible to over eat on a very, very low carbohydrate diet, let’s say something like a ketogenic diet?
Adam: Absolutely. Here’s the thing, I talked about this in my new report, Calorie Gate, and the book I’m writing called Beyond Calorie Gate, which is, sure, you could eat just pure lard. Lard is [inaudible 05:46], very low insulin ingenic food. It’s not going to spike your insulin levels. If you just pour in lard down your thought, you’re going to … I don’t know the biophysics or biochemistry, but yeah, you’re not going to lose weight. You might gain weight. When that happens, especially when people … You go on a little carb diet, and you’re gaining weight. You’re not losing wait. People are, “It’s all that calories.”
When things go wrong, when things get too complicated in nutrition, people just default to the thing. Don’t each too much, eat moderation, because it’s the thing we all know, and it’s simple. Unfortunately, reality is complex, so there’s this disconnect there. Does that make sense?
Co-host: Absolutely, that sounds great. One of the problems people talk about with a high carbohydrate diet the fact that it does make people eat more. It stimulates appetite. How do carbohydrates stimulate appetite and cause people to eat enough to gain weight?
Adam: This is an interesting …. The mechanics of the regulation around appetite are the unmanned. I can start to make stuff up or give you the junior high school answer. Basically, one thing is, one factor is that sugar and carbs actually change your neurochemistry, so you get serotonin high. Basically sugar begets sugar. You eat sugar, you want more sugar. The mechanisms that are [inaudible 07:22] that are extremely complicated, and I don’t know the … Sugar acts like a drug. It stimulates similar pleasure centers too, I think, like cocaine. That’s something.
Also, when you’re eating a lot of sugar and carbs, you metabolism is different than when you’re eating a lot of fat and protein. Your body gets used to that, being a sugar burner. When you get off of that, your body craves to get back on it.
Co-host: If somebody were to gone a low-carb diet, and they were metabolically deranged, what kind of benefits would they see?
Adam: Again, it depends on the person, the kind of diet. There’s all sort of factors that get involved. If you really go the whole hog with this theory, all of the disease of civilization, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer disease, probably weird things like autism, food allergies, you name it. All these diseases are all tied together. They might be cause by sugar in a diet, or some aspect of the western diet. If you remove that bad aspect, and if it turns out to be sugar and carbs, then you might be able to solve not just your weight problem, but also all these diseases, lower your risk across the board for cancer, diabetes, etcetera.
It might be. It also depends on how metabolically damaged you’ve been. Once you’ve been hit in the head, or hit in the fat tissue enough time, it’s hard to reverse that. It’s actually miraculous that we can do it.
Co-host: What is the bigger problem, the type of carbs or the amount? A lot of people say, the Catabans, the Pacific Islander Tribe, they love carbohydrates. Obviously, low carbohydrate diets can’t improve weight, or weight loss. Is it really the type of carbohydrates, or as you said the amount, some of the this is metabolically deranged? How does that all fit in?
Adam: This is what I understand. [Inaudible 09:26] a great point. Catabans, as you were talking about, they have recently [inaudible 09:30] Ancestral Health Symposium. They give a lecture on the Catabans. They eat something like 90% of their calories from yams or something like that. They’re just getting all their food from carbs, basically. They’re healthy. They don’t have any of these diseases, no obesity. If you buy the simplistic version of the carbohydrate hypothesis, which is [inaudible 09:53] carbs messes your blood sugar insulin, and gives you diseases and obesity, then the Catabans are a huge problem for that hypothesis.
It’s the same thing with a lot of east Asians societies, Japanese, Okinawans I believe. They eat a lot of rice, which is a grain, a processed carb, and they live to a hundred. That’s a problem. In terms of the quantity versus the quality, it’s hard to say from that observation. What if the Catabans double the amount of calories in their diets, would they get obese and sick? Let’s say maybe, I don’t know. It seems like the main alternative idea is you need sugar, you basically need to be metabolically screwed up by something, and probably sugar. I think Robert [inaudible 10:48] believe now that you’d have too much fructose and that messes up the liver, causes insulin resistance.
Then once you get insulin resistant, then you become very sensitive to all these different foods, particularly the carbohydrates. Then both the quality and quantity come into place. It’s dance. Maybe a person is really sensitive if they have a glass of orange juice that’s going to screw them up, but they could have a bowl of pasta, and it wouldn’t. The problem is there’s no good science to tell us any of this, so you have to experiment, and that’s scary.
Co-host: It basically comes down to figuring out what worked for you. Obviously if you’re eating a very high carbohydrate diet, and you’re overweight, you might want to think about changing something. If you need high carbohydrate diet, and you’re not overweight, then maybe you’re okay.
Adam: The promise, it’s hard to tell. You could be okay now, but you could be doing damage. You don’t know. Your weight is not necessarily the only barometer of the damage. You can be rail thin [inaudible 11:54] good shape, and still getting heart disease., You could still be getting cancer. Just because you look good in the mirror, and you’re eating a high-carb diet, it doesn’t mean that you’re saved. One reason I eat low-carb, I was never fat or anything. It strikes me. It’s like get rid of all the foods that could potentially do you harm. As I learn more about, it’s all gets more complicated than what I have in my website, and what I think a lot of low-carbers believe. It’s a big mess.
Co-host: I’m really glad you mentioned that. Your weight is not the only barometer of health. I think that’s the problem a lot of people run into . They believe if a few doesn’t make you obese, that means it’s healthy. Obesity is a problem obviously. I think Kurt Harris has written some good article that were archival about this. Even about the Catabans, we just don’t know that much about them. There are only a few studies on them. I think you’re spot on by saying that there are a lot more problems are going out than just being that.
Adam: Another thing I like to mention about the whole Cataban issue … This is a big thing I know in the [inaudible 13:02] of people. I know how many of your listeners are hard core, reading all these different blogs. We see all this complexity, and it’s real. We tend to, as human nature, to want to figure out simple rules to follow. I think a lot of times people see this and they go back, they default to the calories count thing. I know Stephan Guyenet. Stephan Guyenet has got his [inaudible 13:29], talking about something called food reward, which is the idea that people on blend diets won’t over eat.
That explains why you can look at all these cultures from the Catabans to the Inuit with very different kinds of diets, and no one gets sick from then. It’s just like, he’s idea [inaudible 13:49] just not eating as much as they … They’re not eating up to make themselves sick. It’s a nice compelling idea, but it’s also … I’m not saying there’s not a food reward component in there, or could be, but it doesn’t answer all these other paradoxes out there. It’s a big problem. This whole thing, my calorie is not counting or whatever, and this is just what my website is about.
There’s this other idea, the carbs, insulin, sugar hypothesis that we’re talking about in a debate, and negotiate. What do we do about the Catabans? What is the right diet? What’s the quantity or quality? All those questions are important. They’re basically trying to modify or destroy the carbs insulin hypothesis. Very separate from that, I want to untangle this. There all that is complicated, but separate from is this idea about calories count. It’s a different idea. Let me just tell your readers why everyone’s so obsessed with calories … or listeners.
Which is that when someone goes from a 180 lbs. to 240 lbs.? They’d become obese for some reason. Who knows? They’re gaining 60 lbs. of mass on their body, which means that they have to have over eaten 60 lbs. worth of food somehow. In other words, that mass cannot come out of nowhere, it has to be created by something. Somehow they’ve taken in more calories than they’ve burned off. Because that is an inevitable reality of loss of physics. People assume, when they see this complexity, just default to, just don’t eat too much and you’re not going to gain weight, because you can’t.
There’s a lot of false in that reasoning. Rather than rehash Taubes argument … I wanted to get people to think about is, when you over eat calories, there has to be some way for those calories to get into your fat tissue. It’s not just … there’s got to be some biochemical magic happening. I’m calling this the black box, a chain of cause and effect. A lean person who eats too much, and then somehow this magical black box happens, and helps the person store calories as fat. Does that make sense?
Co-host: Yeah, it does.
Adam: That’s how everyone assumes things work. Take that in your mind and put a pin in it. Out in my book, I bring up the example of a pregnant woman. A pregnant woman goes [inaudible 16:13]. 9 months, it grows a baby. Maybe she gains 40, 30 lbs. or something. The laws of thermodynamics hold true for her too. She has to overeat by 30 lbs. to make the baby. The baby can’t come from nowhere. There’s a black box for here too. A thin woman who’s not pregnant, she over eats, and there’s a black box that causes the calories to become her baby. Do you agree to that too?
Adam: The thing is if you think about that, the cause and effect of that is reversed. It’s not that she over eats calories, and that makes the baby. Otherwise, I could over eat calories and make a baby, which I can’t, because I’m a guy. It’s a black box as reversed. That’s the key here, is that we need to count what’s in the black box, and the calories off the secondary. Anytime you gain mass of any kind of your body, muscle tissue, you grow hair, you got a tumor, any [inaudible 17:18] that happens, you’re eating more calories that you’re burning off. Who cares? It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter at all. It’s irrelevant.
The same is true with you fat tissue, because you fat tissue is just another organ. The black box matter for your fat tissue too. We have cause and effect of this reversed. It should be a lean person, something screws up his black box, which then causes him to over eat, which then causes him to be fat. The overeating must occur, but it’s irrelevant. Does that make sense.
Co-host: That makes perfect sense.
Adam: I wrote it in my book. It’s like if your nails are growing too long, you don’t eat less and exercise more. If you don’t want to get pregnant … This is why I think is a lot of people, I think Guyenet and some of the James Krieger [inaudible 18:01] are pointing out these studies about something called double labeled water where they point out that obese people eat more than the lean people. Of course, pregnant teens are going to eat more than their non-pregnant counterpart, but who cares? It doesn’t explain why they’re pregnant and not pregnant. This is a simple concept to understand, but what’s really throws people for a loop is that there is an intersection between the quantity and quality of food you eat, and the black box.
Like you’re saying in the beginning, you can over eat food even on ketogenic diet and still mess up your fat storage. Just like you can under eat. If you’re under eating, but you’re fixing whatever is the problem. In other words, let’s say you’re eating 800 calories a day in just drinking coke. It’s going to mess up your metabolism. Even though you’re under eating, you’re not going to fix the problem with your fat. You’re fat will stay fat, but you’re just going to consume your organs and heart if you keep starving himself. It’s try [inaudible 19:09] that intersection. How does this stuff all come together? That’s difficult.
This system, whatever is inside that box is incredibly complicated. It’s not just the quantity and quality of food we eat, it’s not just the quantity and quality of exercise we do. Anything that impacts our metabolic hormonal ensemble. You could be smoking, you’re taking antibiotics, you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re eating the wrong foods at the wrong time. All these things can be meaningful, and be interplaying. The idea that we’re going to have one diet that’s going to solve everything is just preposterous.
You have to look at these north stars. What can we look to? One thing we can look to is what did our ancestors eat? We can also look to what does the science tell us? What are these carefully controlled clinical studies? Often they generally say that low-carb gets rid of metabolic syndrome. It’s complicated, and I think we have to just accept that as a community.
Co-host: I’d love to talk about a little of the food reward hypothesis. If food reward was the real problem, it doesn’t really make sense in some ways. If you go on Mark Sisson’s site, Mark’s Daily Apple, he has a ton of super tasty recipes on there. That [inaudible 20:30] is lean. I just want your take.
Adam: I don’t want to dismiss it entirely. It could be a fact. There’s a lot of stuff that makes sense about women. I read his post. He’s a good writer. Some of his stuff is compelling. It’s not a coherent answer. [Inaudible 20:59] just look at the obesity epidemic of dogs and cats. These are really .. We’re saying our pets are over eating. You give a dog car the same bowl of Kibble every day, there’s nothing changing about that. Are you saying these cats are getting obese, are you blaming that from the blondness of the diversity in [inaudible 21:21] us of their diet if they’re getting just the same Kibble every day. That seems doesn’t work.
The other thing is you have to look at, for instance, life without bread at the authors point out some clinical experience where they had people were anorexic, or basically really unhelofully lean. They’re put on low-carb diet, so they gained weight, but the gained weight in all the right places. How could a low-carb diet makes someone who [inaudible 21:53] full and healthy and bigger, and yet someone who’s obese, slim and lean. Is it magic. Food reward really can’t explain that evidence, except to say that it’s wrong. It didn’t happen/
IF you look at the theory of … These diets are doing something that’s taking away a problem like too much insulin on blood sugar, then it explains. You’ve something underlying that’s causing you all these damage, and you’re taking it away when you take up the cards. [Inaudible 22:31] these diets, all these diets, you keep these diets the same calorie level, and all you have to do is cut calories. It doesn’t matter what you eat, you’ll lose weight. Vegan diets, low-carb diets, just standard American diet. All these things have one thing in common, which is definitely low sugar.
It could be if sugar is really the big problem for most people. Then these [inaudible 22:56] I’ll be operating the same way. For instance, if you were the one to test the food reward I bought, and give someone or test the calories count I bought. Then put someone on a very low calorie diet and give them nothing but sugar [inaudible 23:12] make you on the soda diet. I’d like to see someone on, compare someone on a 2,000 calorie a day, drinking nothing but Cocacola, and put on that diet for a month. If they lose and weight and get healthier, then maybe it is a [inaudible 23:26] calories.
I’m guessing that’s not the case. I’m the guessing the case is that all of these diets are operating in some ways by similar mechanisms.
Co-host: You absolutely right. The food reward definitely may play a role. I just think that it might be a little over exaggerated to a point. How do you work out on low-carb diet? I know that was one of the things you talked about in your website. Is it [inaudible 23:52]?
Adam: I get very excited by ideas that are counter intuitive, it’s my thing. One of these ideas is about working out. [Inaudible 24:03] I came from this strength trainer named Fred Hahn who runs a blog called Serious Strength. I interviewed him in my e-book. As Fred emphasizes, slow burn, weight training, basically strength training as the best kind of exercise you can do. I read his book. He wrote it with the doctor’s [inaudible 24:28], The Slow Burn Fitness Revolution. Before I read that, I was doing standard exercise, I’d run. I’m not a triathlete like you. I run and I do yoga and stuff, and I was in good shape.
I was convinced, compelled by their arguments to give all it up and just do weight training. Let me tell, I’m now a year after that, I’ve never in been in better shape. I can stronger than I was when I was rowing crew. In high school, the baby, and I can lift her up, because my lower back is really strong. This thing has really helped me. I don’t know enough about exercise physiology to compare slow burn with other kinds of training. It’s definitely been an interesting experience.
Co-host: Let’s say you’re talking to somebody who’s never really been on a low-carbohydrate diet before, and you’re trying to convince them that maybe what they’re doing … They are metabolically deranged. They obviously have a serious problem. How would you try to explain to them the simple explanation for why they would change? How do you go about try and convince them that maybe the USDA is not working in their best interests.
Adam: That’s a great question. I try to talk about this in the Low-carb Survival Guide, this ebook that I wrote. It’s hard. When I first found out about this, I was a total evangelist. I go to people I didn’t know. I see him at the grocery store, they’re drinking orange juice and low-fat milk, and [inaudible 26:05] fat and diabetic. I go up to them. I try to gaze them, and say “Don’t drink that juice. You need [inaudible 26:13]. I thought my relatives, some of them I’ve convinced, some of them I haven’t. It’s hard. What’s hard about it too is because the whole belief system of low-carb or whatever paleo is so foreign.
If you follow the logic, if you buy into this, it means that you’re buying into the fact that public authorities have completely screwed us over, which is not something people want to believe. We want to have that illusion that we’re being taken care of, very least not being asked to do things that are going to kill us. Basically when you’re saying carbs are bad, it’s as if we live in a world where there’s government institution that was telling people to smoke cigarettes, a pack a day. We’re saying no cigarettes are going to kill you and give you lung cancer.
People would freak out, because it seems so … If that’s true then why are we even told to some cigarettes. It’s the same thing. There’s no easy way. People have to be ready to hear it. I think the one key is to listen to them. It’s not about facts or arguments or convincing them. It’s about listening to what are they feeling, what do they need, and letting them come to it at their own pace.
Co-host: I like that. It’s definitely one of the things I’m working on too it’s try not to freak out. Once you really start dabbing into the evidence, you get so convinced by a [inaudible 27:36]. Man, why doesn’t everybody know this stuff? Then you pull your head out of the blogosphere, and then you look around. You realize there’s still a whole normal world around you too.
Adam: The good thing about it is food is … it’s such a personal thing. We think about religion and politics as personal. You don’t have to make a decision about what church you’re going to go to every day, I guess maybe you do, or who are you going to vote for, but ever day you have to eat 3 or 5 times a day. This is such an intimate decision. [Inaudible 28:11] stranger, even someone you know and trust give you instructions about what you’re going to eat. People get protective about that. No, this is my food. Leave me alone. It’s like someone trying to steal french fries from your plate. You don’t want that to happen.
Co-host: Are there any problems somebody might [inaudible 28:29] carbohydrate diet?
Adam: You mean, such as what?
Co-host: Health problems. I know there’s some talk recently about getting [inaudible 28:38] or anything like that. I know you’re not a doctor or anything, but have you heard a thing about that, or have you experienced any problems yourself?
Adam: I have [inaudible 28:48] promised myself. Sure, it sounds possible. Again, part of the thing is your taking people … Basically if you took a healthy human being, they could probably live in a lot of different diets. They could live Cataban diet. They could live an Inuit diet, because we’re adaptable. We’re flexible. Basically you’re taking people who are … Most people who come to the world of diet of have been broken somehow. Low-Carb might be a fix, but if you do it wrong, or if you’re sensitive to certain things, like who knows what? You could get sick.
You could be sick from the residual damage that was done when you’re metabolically hurt. You could be sick from … I don’t know, maybe you have an allergy to something in the meat. There’s many different ways you can get sick, it could be the diet wrong. I’m not a doctor, but I can tell you that it’s not a cure necessarily. For instance, I know people that there’s … talk about people who want a high protein diet but low fat, and that can have problems.
Co-host: I know one of the biggest problem was sticking with a low-carbohydrate diet is carb cravings. What are some tips you can get people that are overcoming this?
Adam: That’s a plug for my book. My book, Low-Carb Survival guide, I talked about that. Carb cravings are natural to have. I’ll just rattle off some tips. Don’t stock your kitchen with carbs. It gives a visualization and meditation. You can give yourself time to binge. You can try and find … Making sure you’re eating enough food is important. This is a thing that I think a lot of failed calorie counters have a problem on, because they’re scared of eating. Even our little carb diets [inaudible 30:53] only 800 calories a day. Make sure you’re eating enough.
[Inaudible 30:58] the company you keep is important too. [Inaudible 31:01 very social creatures. If you’re in a family, make sure your family is helping you and supporting you. That’s hard, because a lot of family members will just make fun of you, or will encourage you to snack. Imagine if you’re a smoker. Think about it as being a smoker, and you’re trying to quit. Everyone around you is smoking. They’re smoking in restaurants. They’re giving baby cigarettes. You smell second hand smoke every room you go into. You’re craving the nicotine. You can try nicotine [inaudible 31:31], whatever.
The point is that’s the kind of environment we’re in if you’re trying to cut carbs. You got to the grocery, it starts carbs everywhere. Not only that, but you’re also in this environment where people are telling you that cigarettes are healthy. Imagine going out to a nice dinner, outside I guess we can still smoke, and someone’s like, “Let me have a few cigarettes with your dinner.” You look, “No, no. I’m not smoking” and they laugh at you. They’re like, “Come on, what? Smoking causes lung cancer, forget it. That’s ridiculous, have a cigarette,” That’s the kind of environment that people are stuck in, which is horrible. It’s hard.
Co-host: Absolutely. I couldn’t agree more. What was the hardest part about going low-carb for you, and how did you ever come in?
Adam: I [inaudible 32:18]. When I read Taubes’s book, I’m convinced. I felt convinced by the arguments. I the wasn’t a matter of am I not believing it. I think part of it was the sense of isolation that when I’m eating this way and all of my problems and relatives are not. Actually some of them are now. It’s hard, because you feel you have to explain yourself. You want to convince them. That was very hard for me. It’s still as hard, because I want to help people. I’m an evangelist by nature. I see people who are eating not how I think they should eat, my impulse is to tell them to change, which is maybe something about me. That’s hard for me.
Co-host: I can definitely relate. Would you talk a little more about your book, the Low Carber’s Survival Guide.
Adam: Low Carber’s Survival Guide is basically like a manual of … and some tips or ideas and strategies to help people who are on low carb or paleo deal with the day to day challenges of living this thing. It’s expensive. You’re buying [inaudible 33:30] instead of Cracker Jack. It just cost more, it takes time to bear. It’s annoying. It’s basically I’m trying to identify the challenges that we have, and solve them. Then it also comes as bonus interviews with Fred Hahn and Gary Taubes. His really interviews of them taking to them about what it’s like for them to try and how they deal with low carb challenges and talking about Fred Hahn’s Slow Burn system.
I think it’s 200 pages long, so it’s a 100 pages of trying to address these problems and figure out what to do about them. Then there’s also these 2 interviews. I’m about to start a new blog. I’m using this new report called Calorie Gate to launch it. Then the Calorie Gate [inaudible 34:19] is about the black box concept that I just talked about. I’m finishing up a new book called beyond Calorie Gate, which is basically if we accept the premise that the black box is what we need to count, and not calories, how do we do that? Looking at this mountain of stuff that is in there.
As I said before, it’s the quantity and quality of foods, quantity and quality of exercises, and a million other things, medications. You have stuff on your site which I thought was interesting. Gut flora, who knows what’s in there. How do we look inside there and figure out what’s a count. That’s what that book’s about. Then bitterly going forward, what I really want to do is spread this concept of the black box, and get people thinking about how to move beyond the calories. If there’s one concept I think we can, a paleo, low carb, and vegan, we can all unify behind this, this black box thing, because it’s ultimately agnostic, and we need to figure out how to move beyond this whole eat less move more insanity.
I think about it as this, if the USD food pyramid is Darth Vader, then the calorie balance scales is the emperor. It’s the power being on the throne. Does that make sense? Until we get of eat less move more, until we get of rid of calories and calories out, we’re never going to solve the problem of the food pyramid. The advocate to the food pyramid can always just say, “Don’t eat too much.” That’s the problem. Everything in [inaudible 35:55]
Co-host: Adam thank you so much for talking about this man. I hope everybody checks out your blog. Where can they find you and see what you’re doing?
Adam: You can check on the website why-low-carb-diets-work.com with actually dashes in between every word for extra convenience. That’s stuff I wrote about a year ago or more. It’s probably at this point pretty out dates, but it has some interesting ideas. Hopefully coming forward I want to be more active in terms of blogging.
Co-host: Good. I really like your work. They’re very well written articles, and I’ll make sure to have a link to your new site, and your book [inaudible 36:36]. Adam, thanks man.
Adam: A appreciate it.
Dave: If you’re looking for a way to know which foods are making you weak, check out the free app that we just released called Bulletproof Food Sense. It works by using the phone camera in order to get a measurement of your heart rate, or you can just type in your heart rate if you know what it is from some other monitoring device. You do this before meal, and you do it after meal a couple times. Based on changes in your heart rate, the application can help you to identify which foods are causing an immune response in your body. Based on that, you can choose to avoid those foods, and you’ll find a huge boost in your performance, just from not eating the foods that you have sensitivities to.
You’ll also find that you can lose weight much more easily when you’re not eating foods that cause you to feel foggy and inflamed all the time. This app is free. It’s called Bulletproof Food Sense, and it’s available on the iPhone Store.
What We Cover
- How to sort through the complexities of health.
- How Adam went from screenwriter to low carb journalist.
- Why overeating is not the cause of obesity.
- The “Food Reward Hypothesis” of obesity.
- How the Kitavans stay healthy without cutting carbs.
- Why calories matter (but not really).
- How to workout on a low carb diet.
- Potential health problems of a low-carb diet.
- Practical tips to solve carb cravings.
- The hardest part about going low-carb, and how to overcome it.
- Adam’s book: “The Low Carber’s Survival Guide”
- Adam’s new book: “Calorie Gate”
Links From The Show
Books & Info
Food & Supplements
Listener Q & A
- How do you prevent acne and hair loss?
- How do you eat fat without a gall bladder?
- Will The Better Baby Book be useful for biohackers?
- Why aren’t beans on the Bulletproof Diet?
- Are smoked foods allowed on the Bulletproof Diet?
- What are the most important things you should worry about when trying to get pregnant?
- What does a normal Bulletproof Meal look like?
- Is coconut flour healthy?
(A review of the latest studies and research.)
Questions for the podcast?
Leave your questions and responses in comments section below.
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I have two questions about the diet,
- I am genetically predisposed to baldness (alopecia) and acne. That is why am very concerned that the high amounts of saturated fat will worsen my condition due to increased levels of free testosterone. The acne part is easy to figure out as the impact will be within several days, however, the alopecia is much more difficult to figure out how it will be influenced by this diet. Will the high amounts of saturated fat cause my acne and alopecia to become worse?
2. My wife had her gal bladder removed and I am afraid that such diet will be bad for her due to the high amounts of saturated fat.
Any input will be highly appreciated.
Wow Dave, great stuff! Very comprehensive but accessible at the same time (good work with the graphs!). Couple of questions if I may.
- This stuff seems to cross-over into the content of your book, how much more of the book will be relevant for non-baby producing purposes?
- You and Tim Ferriss disagree about the suitability of beans. Given that you’ve spent some time talking to him, what is the basis of your difference of opinion?
- Where do smoked foods fit on the spectrum? Is there a difference between cold and hot smoked food?
Brilliant work as always. Cheers Leon
My wife and I have been trying for 2 years to get pregnant with no luck even though the Doc says there is nothing wrong with us. We had our first almost without trying, this time it’s much different and it’s been really stressful. So, if you guys have any tips or suggestions, I’d love to hear them.
Keep up the great work!
- I’ve managed to get my mum to follow (to some degree) the bulletproof diet, and to buy food for me that is almost entirely bulletproof. The one thing that would be helpful would be some meal ideas when cooking for multiple people. It feels odd eating, for example, just eggs or just meat by themselves, so could you give, say, the different meals you’d have over a few days.
- What are your thoughts on coconut flour? Can I make pancakes again and not feel guilty?
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