A ‘Well Designed’ Ketogenic Diet?

Four years on, and three hundred pounds lighter, as you might imagine I’ve had a conversation or two (hundred) on the subject of weight loss and dieting with folks.

Invariably I mention a ketogenic diet (LCHF) as what I believe the human body was designed to eat* and just as invariably I receive this response…

“Oh, I did that and it didn’t work for me.”

I literally had this exact conversation with a young weight lifter at work who is convinced that giant sugary shakes, so long as they are filled with fruit, are the ne plus ultra of healthy.  When I mentioned a ketogenic diet he insisted he had done, and doggone it, it just didn’t work for him and to boot he felt awful for weeks.

It has become my custom at this point in the conversation to ask some pointed questions about what they ate and their basic understanding of the keto diet.  As a rule they either ate too many carbs or didn’t eat enough fat.

In his case he did not eat enough fat.  His statement, and I quote was in all it’s glorious indignance, “but I ate steak!”

Ahem

You may note that none of the cuts of beef, steak included rise to eighty percent of calories from fat.  Mind you he had no idea what I was talking about, none.

My simple formulation of a properly formulated ketogenic diet is less than 20 grams of carbs (with ideally zero from highly processed sources) and more than 80% of calories from saturated fats.  Animal fats being preferable.

On the flip side many I speak with try the amazing tactic of essentially trying to smuggle highly processed carbs into their, ahem, ‘well designed’ ketogenic diet as though you could debate the correct number of carbs with your metabolism.

Heh, um no.

The truth is that the human body thrives on a ketogenic diet. That loud noise you hear is the sound of folk protecting their addiction. Don’t worry, it rapidly goes away as they get into ketosis!

 

*Though I do think when you have achieved your weight loss goals it may be possible to transition to something more like standard Paleo or some such.  I do think straight Keto is a medical diet which helps you lose weight and restore your metabolism to proper functioning and you may or may not need to be on it forever.  However I do not think the human body was designed to eat any grains whatsoever.

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Low Carb Pots De Creme

To be perfectly honest my reaction after trying this recipe was ‘where have you been for the last four years?’ This one has it all, low carb, high fat, creamy, delicious and, easy.

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Low Carb Pots De Creme

  • Servings: 4
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Ingredients:

2 cups heavy cream
5 egg yolks
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
1 teaspoon
6-12 packets Stevia
Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

  1. In heavy bottomed sauce pan combine vanilla and heavy cream.
  2. Scald heavy cream and set aside.
  3. In mixing bowl combine egg yolks; salt, and stevia. Whisk well
  4. Slowly whisk heavy cream into eggs*.
  5. Pour custard mixture into four ramekins and place ramekins into a baking dish.
  6. Fill baking dish with water halfway being careful to keep it out of custard mixture.
  7. Bake at 325 for 55 minutes until custard is set.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
  9. Can be eaten as is or garnished with berries, whipped cream, etc.

*Pro-tip: When adding the scalded cream to the eggs go super slow, drop by drop if necessary. If you get a little bit of scrambled eggs you can run it through a strainer, if you get a lot, well, better luck next time.
*I made it with 6 packets of Stevia as I prefer it less sweet.
source: Vida con Carne

Monday Linkage & Stray Thoughts

Just saw this while enjoying my morning constitutional…

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Hmmmm. Taubes said it would take twenty years from the publication of his book. How far in are we now?

Saw this on my Facebook timeline over the weekend: what do we call a thousand anecdotes? Key graph: “Despite objection from Andrew’s initial doctors, he chose to discontinue standard therapies pursuing instead an unconventional approach via nutrition.”

On this weekend’s comment kerfluffle: my blog my rules. Here’s what baffles me, I thought the meme in question was at very worst ‘cute.’ I assure you I am not trying to be offensive to sane people, so if you find yourself offended take the hint. Lots of fine blogs out there.

ever wondered why the ‘Dietary Guidelines For Americans’ is such a godawful mess? Wonder no more. I grew up in Chicago so believe when I tell you that I understand the problem right down to the ground.

French Onion Dip (low carb)

I’ve really been making an effort to avoid prepared products of any kind. One of the things we had been buying was flavored dip for Pork Rinds so I decided to whip up a batch of low carb French Onion Dip. It only requires four ingredients…

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Plop those four ingredients in a good sized bowl…(Sour cream, fresh garlic, beef base, pepper, to taste)

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Stir like crazy for a minute or two and shazam…

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Dip & enjoy!

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“Medical Reversals?”

An interesting NYT blog piece on medical reversals

The consequences of medical reversal are complicated. For starters, reversal challenges the notion that medicine is scientific — the premise that a century ago helped doctors to exorcise images of snake oil and hucksterism. But despite impressive progress, faith in medical leadership is currently at its lowest point in 50 years, a decline likely accelerated by a widespread sense that medical dogma often flip-flops.

On a practical level, reversals also mean accomplishing the near impossible: convincing people to abandon strongly-held convictions. Antibiotics have been used for ear infections for so long, and so pervasively, that years after studies showed they do more harm than good, parents and doctors continue to believe.

Anybody who is currently following a low carb high fat diet and has made the mistake of mentioning this salient fact to their physician is all too familiar with this phenomenon. How resistant to new facts M.D.’s can be.

The reasons treatments like antibiotics for ear infections persist are complicated. Patient expectation, patient-doctor communication, cultural norms, time pressures and financial factors all contribute, making solutions fraught. Meanwhile, scientifically-debunked practices remain common, and troubling.

Shall we add ‘lipiphobia‘ to that list? (related)

So how does this happen?

The pattern repeats: A promising new therapy or technology is introduced based on weak data and later, more rigorous studies discredit the practice. When I spoke with Dr. Prasad, he suggested a more staid, scientific approach. “The adoption of practices based on little or no good evidence is our biggest problem,” he said. “If we decide to use new technologies while waiting for definitive studies, they should be labeled ‘experimental,’ and patients should be counseled appropriately.”

Kinda like this?

The great, flaming irony here is that lipophobia is arguably the biggest and most damaging experiment ever conducted on a human population in the history of the world. And though the data is in, unbelievably it is still ongoing

We spend more time sick now than a decade ago
Despite longer life spans, fewer years are disease-free

Original paper: Mortality and Morbidity Trends: Is There Compression of Morbidity? Eileen M. Crimmins and Hiram Beltrán-Sánchez. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci (2010)

A 20-year-old today can expect to live one less healthy year over his or her lifespan than a 20-year-old a decade ago, even though life expectancy has grown. (snip)

The average number of healthy years has decreased since 1998. We spend fewer years of our lives without disease, even though we live longer. (snip)

Functional mobility was defined as the ability to walk up ten steps, walk a quarter mile, stand or sit for 2 hours, and stand, bend or kneel without using special equipment. (snip)

A male 20-year-old today can expect to spend 5.8 years over the rest of his life without basic mobility, compared to 3.8 years a decade ago — an additional two years unable to walk up ten steps or sit for two hours. A female 20-year-old can expect 9.8 years without mobility, compared to 7.3 years a decade ago.

And among serious medical folk the subject of nutrition, other than scolding patients to do low fat/high carb harder, is simply not on their radar in any appreciable way. In fact to bring it up will get you a condescending sneer and a lecture about the dangers of animal fat. We know, when we were improving our health massively by doing the exact opposite of what modern medical science recommends Michelle was seeing multiple Doctors, everyone of whom was running full panel tests on her.

To a one they would enter the examination room marveling at Michelle’s improvement and wonder what she was doing. When we informed them that it was simply LCHF (blank look) Atkins, they would recoil in horror and insist we stop immediately as Atkins was dangerous, everybody knows that!

With the exception of the nephrologist, he was interested until he learned it was a dietary intervention and said “Boy, I wish we could make a Pharma for that.”

To which we replied, “there is a Pharma Doc, food.” As this flew in the face of his received religion he just tuned us out. Here’s what we think, if the average American reversed their diet, eating large amounts of saturated fat preferably from animals and eliminating processed carbs most hospitals could eliminate eighty percent of their current volume.

And perhaps that is why the medical profession always reacts with hostility to this simple idea?

Low Carb Oven Fried Chicken

I’ve been wanting to try this for a while…the only disappointment after having it for dinner last night was that I hadn’t done so sooner!

Oven Fried Chicken

Low Carb Oven Fried Chicken

  • Servings: 4-6
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Ingredients:

8-12 pieces of dark meat chicken (thighs and/or drumsticks)
2 eggs
3 cups ground pork rinds
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 tablespoons dried parsley
4 tablespoon butter

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  1. Rinse and pat chicken pieces dry.
  2. Whisk eggs in a bowl that will allow you to easily dip chicken pieces.
  3. In a sealable plastic bag combine pork rinds, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, black pepper and parsley; seal and shake well to mix seasonings well.
  4. Thoroughly dip one piece of chicken in egg wash, being sure to coat all surfaces.
  5. Place chicken piece in seasoning bag, seal, and shake until well and evenly coated; remove from bag and set aside.
  6. Repeat until all chicken is breaded.
  7. Put butter in a pan large enough to accommodate chicken comfortable; place pan in oven until butter melts.
  8. Arrange breaded chicken pieces in pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until temperature of largest piece reaches at least 165 degrees and crust is golden brown and crispy.

source: Vida con Carne

TIP: If it makes life easier, chicken can be breaded in advance and stored in refrigerator until ready to bake. I did this myself yesterday — got it ready to go mid-morning, then waited until mid-afternoon when Brian came home from work to bake it. I took it out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature while I took about 10 minutes to heat the oven.