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2019-11-21 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Personal Health , 137 references
[Comments enabled]  

See, I told you so.

Here, Goldberg et al. report that feeding mice a high-fat, low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet confers protection in the context of lethal influenza infection. 

One of the benefits I had noted from a ketogenic lifestyle was that I was much less likely to contract various viral infections of an "ordinary" sort (e.g. colds, flu, etc.)  This was interesting but the mechanism wasn't something that made sense right up front.

Now it appears that there's an explanation for it, and a warning: You can't get there from here with supplements and similar; you have to eat this way.

Influenza-A is a nasty virus; it kills 20,000+ people a year in the United States, many of them elderly or otherwise morbid in some fashion.  Most people think the "common flu" is no big deal but besides the human misery and lost time from work and other production pursuits it directly kills a decent number of people every year.

The usual claim is that there's not much to do other than "take a flu shot", which is a hit-or-miss deal as the shot is formulated long before the actual strains circulating in a given year will be known and thus it's a guess.  Never mind that the shot itself is not risk-free; it's low risk, but not zero risk, and since the strains change from year to year it's not a "one shot" deal either; you need it every year.

I've never gotten it and yet the incidence of my getting truly ill with a nasty flu bug has gone down a lot since adopting a ketogenic lifestyle.

Weight loss and glucose control, the latter of which ought to be enough by itself, should drive everyone this way all on its own.  Indeed, as I argued in a column in 2017 we could get rid of a huge amount of the federal deficit by simply refusing to spend a nickel on government medical care for anyone who has Type II diabetes and refuses to adopt that lifestyle.  This shouldn't be controversial; indeed, the premise that the public should pay for someone's intentional destruction of their own health when not doing so can be accomplished for zero cost is outrageous, and yet not one politician has picked this up.

Gee, I wonder how much all of those politicians get in donations from medical firms who love both misery and billions of dollars, a farce that continues only because the American people refuse to slather 'em up with some BBQ sauce if they don't put a stop to this crap.

But..... if you want a personal reason to go ketogenic besides the obvious metabolic benefit how about not getting sick?

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Well look what we have here:

A research team at MedUni Vienna's Center for Brain Research has found that high-fat maternal diets can cause life-long changes in the brains of the unborn offspring. When a pregnant woman consumes a diet high in polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acids, her body produces an excess of endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids), which overload the fetal system and impair the development of healthy brain networks. Such a mechanism seems relevant to pathologies such as ADHD, schizophrenia and anxiety disorders. It is unlikely that such damage can simply be reversed by a subsequent change of diet.

The first sentence is highly misleading.

PUFAs, specifically those bearing Omega-6, are almost-exclusively found in plant-based sources.  Specifically, vegetable oils, essentially none of which are produced in nature, contain extremely high levels of this substance.  Note that there has been an extraordinarily-intensive campaign to get people to eat plant-based products, including their oils, rather than animal sources which tend to contain saturated fat and are in fact found in nature, obviously.

Now we have a study, albeit in animals, along with an identified molecular mechanism by which it is likely to translate directly into human development.

If you're vegan or vegetarian, or even if you're eating a "standard, high-carb and high PUFA American diet" you may be creating this very environment that leads to materially-high risk of irreversible fetal cognitive damage should you become pregnant.

Worse, it appears there's absolutely nothing that can be done about it post-birth.

Many have long wondered why we have seen a marked spike higher over the last 30ish years in disorders in kids and young adults, such as ADHD and schizophrenia.  Many have postulated that these disorders were always roughly as prevalent, but we "catch" them more-frequently, specifically with regard to ADHD.

This claim -- that we are simply more effectively diagnosing these disorders -- appears to have now been falsified, in that we now have both a mechanism of the damage and the actual molecular pathway involved in that damage.  Worse, this coincides exactly both with those non-professionals who have screamed about "horrible" consumption of animal products and direct recommendations by health and government officials recommending that animal fat intake be reduced and, when substitution is made, that the substituted fat be polyunsaturated, which are nearly-exclusively plant-based and very high in Omega-6 -- in other words, precisely the caloric sources implicated here.

Our government and various scolds, including the so-called "climate screamers", have all advocated that you consume foods in a pattern that appears to be implicated in severe and irreversible fetal damage, and that damage has and is occurring.

Indeed, it is likely fair to ask whether the risks of such an advocated consumption pattern is of like kind and character as would be caused to a fetus should a woman decide to consume alcohol or drugs during her pregnancy.  Both have a material probability, but not certainty, of producing irreversible changes in the developing child's mental capacity and health.

Our government has in fact advocated for the consumption of plant-based oils containing high levels of the very substances that are implicated in this permanent fetal damage.

What's worse is that it is very difficult if not impossible to obtain sufficient caloric intake without consumption of either fast carbohydrates in volume (which are known to potentiate diabetes and other metabolic disorders) or these PUFA-containing man-made or concentrated vegetable oils if you eschew the consumption of animal fats and products.

Our government and "health authorities" appears to have, for decades, directly advocated that Americans consume a diet that irreversibly damages children in the womb.

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2019-02-20 09:45 by Karl Denninger
in Personal Health , 212 references
[Comments enabled]  

This sort of crap needs to be shouted down -- loudly.

In 1985 my mother was exposed to German Measles due to a failure in herd immunity. Herd immunity is created when the "herd" is vaccinated to the point where the disease, infection, or bacteria has nowhere to go, and no hosts to hide in.

This is a lie and those who "edit" these media outlets have a responsibility to correct it before publication.

Herd immunity does not prevent individual infections.  To do so you'd need 100% effective coverage and you never obtain that.  Among other things there are people who do not get vaccinated; some for personal reasons, some for medical reasons.  To obtain 100% coverage you'd have to force all of those people to be vaccinated including those who were at serious risk of being killed by the vaccine itself, such as those who have severely-compromised immune systems, and even doing that would not achieve it, since immunity failure even if you do take a given vaccine does happen.

Herd immunity is the goal of reducing the transmission rate of a given infection to below 1.0.  That is, for a given person who is already infected for the disease to spread it must infect at least one more person.  If it does, it spreads exponentially.  If it does not, that particular group of infections eventually dies out.  If an particular infection has a transmission of 0.9 then if there are 100 infected people in a population they infect 90, who infect 81 and so on -- until it reaches zero.

HERD IMMUNITY DOES NOT PREVENT TRANSMISSION.  THAT IS A COMMON AND DAMNABLE LIE AND ANYONE WHO SPEAKS THAT LIE DESERVES TO BURN IN HELL.  IT'S DAMNABLE BECAUSE THOSE WHO ARE VACCINATED BUT FAIL THE IMMUNITY BUILD, WHICH TYPICALLY CANNOT BE DETECTED UNTIL EXPOSED (AT WHICH POINT IT'S TOO LATE, AS WAS THE CASE WITH THIS WOMAN'S MOTHER) OR WHO CANNOT TAKE THE VACCINE FOR MEDICAL REASONS ARE LED TO BELIEVE THEY ARE SAFE WHEN THEY ARE NOT.

My mother remembers getting a rash all over her body on Valentine's Day and being sick for a week. She didn't know what it was. She didn't know she needed her MMR vaccine booster, as they weren't standard at the time (as they are now). The other thing that she didn't know? She was pregnant at the time. With me.

As a result, I was born with Congenital Rubella Syndrome. I had cataracts in both eyes, a heart defect and hearing loss, plus a handful of other weird symptoms that I would find out later are classically CRS related but didn't seem so at the time.

Reality is that if you either (1) can't take the vaccine or (2) have immunity failure and did take the vaccine if exposed you will still likely contract the disease.  Herd immunity just decreases the number of additional people who, when exposed, will contract it to less than 1.0 for each person who becomes sick.

There are other ways to obtain herd immunity than vaccination.  For example if you can detect exposure before contagion occurs in a given person you can isolate them until the disease has run its course and produced natural immunity, which is superior to vaccination in that it has much closer to 100% odds of producing lifetime immunity in a given person.  (Of course this assumes you survive the disease itself!)  If you are successful in quarantining people in this fashion you also produce herd immunity and you do so without vaccines.  The problem is that it requires a level of medical surveillance that is completely impractical to obtain for highly-contagious diseases such as measles, which have natural transmissions efficiencies in non-immune populations that boggle the mind.

The cruel hoax run by places like CNN and other media and medical outlets, and which has a political bent to it, is that due to the lack of 100% coverage from vaccines -- a level of coverage that is scientifically impossible to obtain -- with or without vaccination you must still make a maximum effort to prevent disease carriers from entering the population in order to avoid those without immunity from becoming severely ill.

That means you must police those who enter your nation and that means that unregulated entry of any sort is a severe threat to public health and must be prohibited.

In short unregulated entry -- illegal immigration -- kills people.

Of course that is contrary to the "narrative" that walls are immoral and that people like the "Dreamers" are "just looking for a better life."

Uh, no.  Every person who comes into this nation through other than a regulated, screened point of entry is a potential disease carrier and some percentage of them are carrying active infections.

We regulate the transport of agricultural goods and demand inspection at points of entry to attempt preventing this risk among livestock and plant species.  One of the primary purposes of limiting crossing into the United States (or any other nation) at controlled points staffed by persons who can inspect those who enter is to apply said controls to humans and the infectious diseases they may carry with them.

Such surveillance is never perfect and never can be but intentionally aiding and abetting the destruction of said surveillance by advocating for or permitting in any form illegal immigration that by its nature evades such surveillance is not only insane it's a criminal act of intentionally exposing people to infectious diseases -- and must be stopped.

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2018-02-27 15:35 by Karl Denninger
in Personal Health , 401 references
[Comments enabled]  

I get asked this a lot, so here are my thoughts.

First, two disclaimers -- I'm not a doctor.  Second, I've got a lot of data, but it's all mine so it's all anecdote.  All I can back it up with is a few friends who have similar or identical gear to what I use.

So with that said, here we go.

First, alcohol (drinking alcohol now, not the non-potable versions!) are ethanol.  They are a form of carbohydrate.

But alcohol is a special carbohydrate.  Unlike the common sort in foods ethanol is preferentially metabolized -- that is, it is burned first before other carbohydrates. This is why you get drunk (instead of it "mixing" with all the other carbs and being taken up slowly, which would mean you'd have to drink on an empty stomach to get drunk at all) but at about one drink per hour, you also burn it off at the same rate no matter how much food you eat.

Like all other carbohydrates, however, ethanol also produces the same sort of boost/crash response that you get from other fast carbs, and in fact since it burns first it's arguably the fastest carb.  This is why when you're drinking you often want food and is why "bar food" is inevitably high in carb content (e.g. french fries, etc); the bar owners are not stupid and they sell what people want to buy.

There are two basic problems with drinking alcohol in any amount as it relates to a keto lifestyle.  The first is that booze inherently is anti-ketogenic, although if you keep it to one drink in a day you can remain in a ketogenic state and have that one drink, provided you are performing some amount of exercise (so as to keep glycogen stores very low.)  The problem is that the second drink, and any non-keto food you might consume due to the cravings that alcohol does produce, is almost-certainly enough to knock you out of a ketogenic state.

There used to be a book out there from the early 1900s called "The Drinking Man's Diet."  Unsurprisingly, it called for consumption of essentially zero carbohydrate; the reason is that alcohol consumption greatly potentiates weight gain if you eat carbohydrates.  Why?  Because it's metabolized first and thus the rest of the carbs you take in wind up being stored as glycogen and, if your glycogen stores fill it goes directly on your body as fat.

So that's the keto-related bad news, basically.  But unfortunately the bad news doesn't end there and it's not ketogenic-specific.

I own a Fenix 5x, which I wear basically all the time (except when doing some sort of work that might damage it, such as working on my car, and when it needs to be charged) including overnights.  It's an incredible piece of equipment which I bought mostly for its performance tracking under exercise and its mapping functionality, which is a safety feature when I am hiking in the backcountry ("never lost" as long as it can see the sky and has power.)  No, it's not a substitute for a map, compass and knowing how to do land nav, but it's convenient and, in my opinion, was well-worth the investment.

It also gives me a hell of a lot of data across my entire day.  One of the things it allows me to do is track the quality of sleep, heart-rate variation (which maps to your stress level) and resting heart rate.  And this is where the second piece piece of bad news comes from.

I can tell you from looking at that RHR and HRV (stress) level during my time sleeping on which days I have had zero alcohol intake, on which days I had one drink, on which days I had two, and on which days I had more.  The "more" doesn't matter; once you pass the second one in a day from a stress point of view you may as well get hammered.  My accuracy rate just looking at this piece of information alone is astoundingly high -- and when it's wrong, it's never wrong on the low side (that is, indicating less stress than my booze intake indicates.)

The first drink will raise my resting heart rate by a point or two and delay my systemic stress level from dropping into the lowest category by a couple of hours.  The second by two to four points and costs me half the night in terms of getting into that "resting" state from a stress point of view.  Third and beyond?  You're screwed in terms of actually getting anything that's called "rest" when you sleep.

This has profound implications if you are interested in athletic performance as well.  There's simply no way you will be well-rested and able to perform at peak capacity if you've had anything to drink for two to three days prior to the event.

This is utterly repeatable, every time, has been since I've owned this unit from the first day forward and anyone that has access to that data is going to be able to figure it out without knowing anything else about you.  A couple of friends of mine who have similar units have told me that they have identical results, and I've confirmed this as they've let me look at their data briefly and told them which days they went out to the bar.  I was right -- every time.

For this reason putting such data in the "cloud" and allowing anyone else access to it is a profoundly bad idea.  You don't need an AI to process this, just a pair of eyeballs!

It would be utterly trivial to determine your consumption of booze and "box" you from which it would then be trivial to do things like charge you more for insurance.

The above, by the way, assumes your alcohol is liquor and there are no sugars in whatever you mix it with, if anything.  Straight-up Scotch, vodka-and-(diet) tonic, etc.  Beer and wine also contains carbs that are not from the alcohol; those have to be counted too and it's almost-impossible to know what the non-booze carb content is with the exception of a handful of "light" beers that advertise it -- because unlike actual food the manufacturers don't have to tell you, and they typically don't.  When it comes to craft beer you may get away with one pint glass (or 10oz for high-gravity) of beer but you won't get away with the second in terms of ketosis.  The same issue presents itself when it comes to wine.

So if you're asking whether drinking alcohol is compatible with living a ketogenic lifestyle, the answer is "maybe."  The maybe is that if you are actively trying to lose weight then no, it isn't, and by the way, it doesn't matter what form of food intake you're using in that case because alcohol will poison all of them in terms of weight loss.  The old saying that "he has a beer belly" is not bull****, in short.  One of the worst ways to sabotage your metabolic systems is to screw with your hunger regulation -- while it's possible to ignore that it takes an amount of willpower few possess.

If you are very studious about avoiding any sort of other carbs, except for nutrient-dense green vegetables, then you can probably remain in a ketogenic diet with one drink a day, assuming you are an average-height male.  Women have it tougher simply because on average they're smaller and alcohol is typically not "sized" in terms of the size of the drink to match body size and mass.  This means that for most women that first drink is going to be borderline.  Your odds of remaining in a ketogenic state improve if you are engaged in a material amount of vigorous exercise daily (defined as at least 15 minutes of effort in heart rate zone 4 or 5) as well.

But beyond one drink it doesn't matter if you're trying to live a keto lifestyle.  You will get knocked out of a ketogenic state with the second beer or mixed drink essentially every single time and it is likely to require 48 hours or even more to return to it.

So yeah, if you have one night a week you have a few beers and such you basically took a 7-day ketogenic state and turned it into a 3-4 day one. That's half.  If you're already where you want to be in terms of body mass and metabolic state you can get away with that once a week and probably not harm yourself all that much.

But if you do that twice in a week you can forget it.

The worse news, however, is that ketogenic or not that second drink costs you substantially in terms of impacting your overall body stress level and quality of sleep.  The third one destroys both and it will require 48-72 hours of abstinence before things are back to normal.

This, incidentally, is wildly out of kilter with what the so-called medical "experts" will tell you.  They all say that one drink a day is not harmful and may even be protective; that the second one is probably "neutral" and real serious harm starts with the third (and gets rapidly worse with increasing quantity.)

Nope.

The trivially documented disruption starts with the first drink, the second does very material damage to the quality of your rest and beyond that you may as well get rip-roaring trashed in terms of cardio and overall systemic stress.

I'm sure a far more-strict analysis is almost directly dose-dependent -- for example, the damage done to your liver.  But here I'm not focusing on the long-term chronic effects from drinking too much -- those are both well-known and basically impossible to argue with.

This is simply looking at the data in the context of consumption of "routine" amounts of alcohol if you are trying to live a healthier metabolic lifestyle.

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2016-06-18 05:00 by Karl Denninger
in Personal Health , 1399 references
[Comments enabled]  

The often-heard comments when someone says they're eating HFLC include "your kidneys will explode", "Atkins was really bad for him (Mr. Atkins)", "You'll have a heart attack", "You can't be athletic doing that; you need carbs" and more.

I would like to put some perspective on this.  Yes, this is anecdote; it's a sample size of one with no double-blind, of course -- that is, my personal experience.

Some background: Somewhat over five years ago I essentially went hard-core Atkins-induction coupled with "Couch-to-5k."  At the time I was unable to run one half mile without stopping, climbing a few sets of stairs was work, even summer lawn mowing was a strenuous exercise -- while the heat was certainly not helpful, neither was exercise tolerance.  I was "nominally healthy" in that I was not diabetic, but my body mass had risen from about 155 in High School to right around 210, plus or minus a couple.  I had several times undertaken fairly severe exercise regimes, including hour-long daily stints on a stationary recumbent bike I purchased, in an attempt to lose weight, along with a low-fat, "eat plants" diet -- without success.  I could drop 10lbs without much trouble, but no more, I was ravenously hungry all the time, and as soon as I cut back on the exercise the weight came right back on and stayed.

I'm absolutely certain that I was insulin resistant even though my blood glucose was normal -- I'd get the "hangries" if I attempted to not eat in the morning immediately on waking, and was often hungry for something by mid-afternoon after eating a carb-laden (and low-fat) lunch.  If there was a bag full of M&Ms in front of me and I had one, the entire bag would be gone within a couple of hours.  The same for a tin full of cookies.  A loaf of home-made bread (I have a bread-maker) would be lucky to make two days; the first big, thick slice would get consumed and I'd want two more an hour later.

In short despite my outward metabolic signs being ok, but being overweight (not obese) I know exactly where I was headed -- for both obesity and diabetes.  I'm sure of it.

So in early 2011 I decided I'd had enough -- that the conventional wisdom was either wrong or I was simply going to be consigned due to bad genetics to get older, fatter, and sicker.  The latter is what we have all been sold and I was determined to not simply give up.

Since that was the consensus, I saw no harm in trying something else -- after all, the odds were that I would not make it worse, at least not quickly, and when it comes to things like heart attacks and strokes they take years to develop, weeks or months.

So I went full-on, zero-carb Atkins induction, bought a pair of Nike running shoes and a Garmin 305 with a heart rate strap to track my exercise.

I'm not going to tell you that this was an easy path, at least at first.  I modified the Couch-to-5k thing (you can look it up online) in only one way -- the very last segment of each work-out I ran as hard and fast I could.  At the start this was maybe an eighth to a quarter of a mile, but it would grow to a half-mile later.  Other than that I pretty-much followed the program.

I could not run a half-mile when I started.  Not even close.

I felt like I'd been hit by a bus every.... single... day.

But I kept with it, both on the food and running.  After the first two weeks I added back green vegetables, but otherwise ate zero carbohydrate -- and that included alcohol.  Instead of three times a week I tried for five, and got up at 0500 every day to do it because living in Florida it's hot, even in May.

In the first week, five pounds disappeared.  I knew this would happen and probably be (mostly) water.  The next week and pretty-much every week thereafter, however, another one or two came off.

About two months later I ran a full 3.1 miles for the first time, without slowing to a walk or stopping.  It was not easy, but I did it, and by now it was the middle of June.

Eight months later, roughly that Thanksgiving, I was down to about 160.

I looked at the Garmin stats.  I had lost 50 lbs, which is about 175,000 calories. Running is about 120 calories a mile, according to a heart-rate adjusted GPS machine, and I had run roughly 500 miles at that point, or 60,000 calories worth.

Only one third of the body mass I lost was due to exercise.  That's a numerical fact; the rest was lost due to changing what I ate.

I slowly lost about another 5 lbs; my body weight now fluctuates around 155, +/- 5, assuming I'm reasonably good.

And there it has stayed for the last five years -- whether I'm training for a half-marathon, the Wicked Triple (three races in two days of close to a marathon distance in total), hiking part of the AT, sitting on my ass enjoying a vacation or whatever else I might be doing.  My exertion levels have literally been all over the map, yet my body mass has not.

What has remained constant, more or less, is my adherence to the consumption of food things (and not consuming others!) that I have laid out many times -- you can read that list right here.

Now here's what's changed long-term when it comes to my person and my health that I haven't talked about much:

  • Since I was a child I have had horrid problems with seasonal allergies to the point of being nearly useless twice a year for a month or so.  No amount of medication, OTC or prescription, has ever successfully controlled this completely.  Benedryl works but knocks me flat on my ass, and anything containing pseudoephedrine makes me feel extremely uncomfortable -- I'm one of the people who just can't use any decongestant containing that substance.  I was basically forced to remain indoors, in an air-conditioned space, for two months out of the year and maintain a high-quality pollen filter in my car's airhandler -- or else.  I also avoided travel to woodsy and other flowery areas during the times they were in bloom for obvious reasons.  Slowly, over the last couple of years, my seasonal allergies irrespective of where I am in the country have almost completely disappeared.  They're not completely gone; I still suffer from some congestion for short periods of time, but it's much better than it was.  Last spring I hiked a piece of the AT through the spring bloom, complete with thousands of bees pollinating the flowers, and had exactly zero trouble.  Five years ago that would have been unthinkable.  This appears to be correlated with....

  • My general inflammation level has, I believe, dropped quite a bit.  I had always had "on and off" acne problems, even as an adult.  As a teen it was bad, but it never went completely away -- until I got rid of the carbs.  The same is true of skin issues; I always had them on and off, especially in the winter when the air is dry.  Again, completely gone the first winter and they have stayed gone since.  Gee, I wonder what's going on in my coronary arteries?  Betcha it's not bad things but no, I'm not paying a couple of grand to get CT+contrast scanned to find out for sure.  (The one exception: perfumes in laundry detergents will still "get" me, so I have to watch out for that.)
     
  • I have no adverse blood glucose reaction to sugar intake.  I have, a couple of times in the last year, "challenged" my body with heavy sugar intake just to see what happens; typically with a large dose of milk chocolate or heavily sugar-laden confections like donuts.  I've not been able to drive my blood glucose over 110 with such a challenge despite intentionally trying.  I don't know if I could actually drive my blood sugar to anywhere near 140 today (the upper boundary of what they call the "normal" reaction to such a test) if I literally sat and ate a bag of sugar.  Note that while I was never diabetic I'm very sure my metabolism was compromised.  For those who wonder if your metabolic systems can heal over time if you stop insulting them, the answer appears to be "Yes."

  • I don't like sugar any more.  Things with a lot of sugar in them taste like crap.  Raw white sugar now has a smell to it that I associate with being "medicinal" and is not at all pleasant.  It sort of smells like poison, in fact -- hmmmm.... maybe it is?

  • I have no "hangries" -- ever -- or carb-cravings.  I often have no desire to eat anything before roughly lunchtime; I'll get up in the morning and am simply not hungry.  This means that if I eat something around lunch, and then around dinner, I'm effectively fasting 18 hours out of every day.  It's not because I'm trying, it's because I'm not hungry.

  • If I do work out a lot my appetite goes up.  If I don't it goes down.  I don't have to think about it, count calories, make efforts to restrict my consumption of food or anything like that.  It's simply this: If I'm hungry I eat.  If I'm not I don't.  Oh, and since I'm not gorging myself on hangries my capacity for food has shrunk.  Yes, it appears my stomach is smaller, in that I get full faster -- and it empties slower too.  An interesting observation that I cannot correlate with fact, but I sure can with how I feel if I try to stuff myself for some reason.

  • My exercise tolerance has gone up massively.  The other day I worked on wrecking out part of my gazebo floor (it needs replaced) which involved using a Wonder Bar, saw and moving sand (via shovel and yard cart) that had accumulated under them and then mowed most of the back yard -- in 90ish degree weather with 85%+ humidity.  It was hotter than Hell, but other than needing to stop and get a drink a couple of times it wasn't all that bad.  I would have heat-stroked out trying this a few years ago -- literally.  Likewise I might go run a 5k tonight, and while the sun will be down it won't be any cooler.  Yes, it will be hotter than hell, but I'm not concerned about not being able to do it.  This I attribute to the exercise, not the diet.  But, with an extra 50lbs I suspect I wouldn't be able to move my additional mass irrespective of my cardio condition anywhere near as well as I can today.

  • I am far faster running now than I ever was -- including in High School!  I was never able to break the 9 minute mile barrier on a 3 mile run, with my "typical" time being around 30 minutes.  My PR now is 7:00 flat on a timed 5k race and 7:49 on a half-marathon.  This isn't a singular result either; my kid, who ran one season with the HS cross-country team, has half-way adopted my way of eating over the last six months -- and not only has her appearance improved she has also taken more than two minutes a mile from her time, breaking the 10 minute/mile threshold for the first time in the last couple of weeks.  Don't tell me you can't perform athletically on a low-carb diet -- that's a damned lie.

I'm not going to tell you this was all easy, because it wasn't up front.  Yes, carb-cravings are real.  A week or so back while in a group having a conversation that turned to food I remarked that I do not, as a rule, eat carbs -- my carb intake is for the most part beer, and only a couple a day maximum.  A nurse who was there proceeded to say that "Atkins causes kidney disease" and further that she "has cravings for carbs and thus needs them."  Both are false; first, Atkins is high fat, not high protein.  It is true that high protein diets can cause kidney problems but that's not Atkins; that's doing it wrong!  Second, meth causes cravings too, but that doesn't mean you need meth -- it means you're addicted to it!  Carbs are the same deal; when challenged as to the specific nutrients that you need that are in carbs, of course, she had no answer.  That would be because there aren't any; the amount of carbohydrate you actually require in your diet is zero.  I gave up; oh, she was complaining about having big snoring problems too (gee, I wondered, if you lost some weight what might happen to that........) This, however, is illustrative of the attitude of many in the so-called "health business"; their 4 hours of class at some point was not only insufficient most of what was in there is flat out wrong and even when taking this path might help alleviate a person problem they're experiencing they won't try it!

Here's my view, more than five years into this: I've seen exactly zero bad effects from adopting this lifestyle, and multiple good ones.  My indicators of metabolic health have improved, my exercise tolerance is up massively, I am more able to perform athletically today than I was when I was 17 despite being three times as old, I have zero glucose tolerance trouble evident when challenged, I am never "hangry", I do not crave carbs and in fact find things with sugar in them "too" sweet yet I count no calories or make other conscious attempt to control my food intake and my body mass is approximately what it was 35 years ago and hasn't moved more than a few pounds in either direction for the last five years.  The only exception was when I was in a relationship, eating far too many carbs (and knew it) and five more pounds went on -- literally as soon as I cut that crap out they disappeared within a couple of weeks.

Why would I change what I'm doing now, when for the last five years it has worked -- effortlessly -- to not only halt what was an obvious and visible (albeit slow) decrease my personal vitality and health that many would simply attribute to old age, but almost-completely reversed it -- and in many cases my health and physical abilities now exceed those of my teen years!

Yes, I'm a data set of one.

Now tell me why would you not run your own experiment.

I'm all ears.

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