In my Science For Smart People speech, I argued that laypeople need to learn a bit about science because there are so many contradictory studies published in the popular media. I gave examples from real headlines: Eggs Linked to Diabetes. Eggs Improve Glucose Control. Processed Meats Linked to Cancer. Hot Dogs May Prevent Cancer.

And so forth.

So let’s say you’re an avid reader of online news sites and are especially interested in health topics. Here’s what you could have learned during the past month:

1.  Ketones, a by-product of diets that are low in carbohydrates and very high in fat, may be effective for treating epilepsy, diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

2.  Diets high in fat are bad for memory and other cognitive functions, but exercise may offset the damage and restore the brain to normal.

You could be forgiven for thinking something along the lines of Wait a minute … people with Alzheimer’s lose their memory and other cognitive functions, so I should eat more fat. But eating fat is bad for memory and other cognitive functions, so I should eat less fat. Hmmm, I’m confused … but wait … WHY am I confused? I didn’t used to be so easily confused! I’m probably losing my cognitive abilities from eating too much fat! Or is it from not eating enough fat? Am I supposed to eat more fat then go exercise?!

Let’s start with the Ketones Are Good article from the U.K. Daily Mail. It’s titled Could this elixir hold the key to weight loss? Experts hope it’ll also treat diabetes, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s:

There’s a new drink that could not only help you lose weight, but could also treat epilepsy, diabetes and possibly even Alzheimer’s. It might also be an incredible energy booster. When a group of international rowing champions took it, one of them beat a world record.

It sounds far too good to be true, but the drink’s scientific credentials are impeccable. It’s been developed by Kieran Clarke, professor of physiological biochemistry at Oxford University and head of its Cardiac Metabolism Research Group, at the behest of the U.S. Army.

Equally amazing is that the drink doesn’t involve a new drug. It contains something our bodies produce all the time. This key ingredient is ketones — the tiny, but powerful sources of energy our bodies make naturally when we start using up our fat stores for energy because there are no carbs around.

If ketones are so amazing and they’re produced when there are no carbs around, why not just go on a low-carb diet? Don’t worry; they’ll get to that.

We all have slightly raised ketone levels before breakfast because we haven’t eaten for a while.

I’ve tried explaining that to people who warn me that the ketones produced by my diet are going to ruin my kidneys. They often fail to grasp the concept, perhaps because they don’t have enough ketones fueling their brains.

The clever trick Professor Clarke has pulled off is to have found a way to make ketones in the lab. This means that instead of having to follow difficult diets (with unpleasant side-effects such as constipation and bad breath), you can just add ketones to a normal diet — in the form of the Drink, as it’s known.

Figures. You want to get funding to study the benefits of ketones, there needs to some kind of new product at the end of the rainbow.

In a study published earlier this year, Professor Clarke found that rats given the new ketone compound ate less and put on less weight than those getting the same amount of calories from a high-fat or a high-carbohydrate diet.

In the first trial Professor Clarke has run on humans with diabetes, completed within the past few months, the effects were also impressive. In the week-long study, eight people with diabetes had three ketone drinks a day as well as their normal diet.

As with the rats, their weight dropped (an average of nearly 2 per cent of their body weight), but so did their glucose levels, cholesterol and the amount of fat in the blood. The amount of exercise they did went up as they had more energy.

I’m not crazy about the idea of raising ketones with a manufactured ketone drink, but the article paints a pretty positive picture when it comes to ketones, explaining, for example, how ketogenic diets have helped kids with epilepsy control seizures. The takeway message: diets that produce ketones are good for your brain, suppress your appetite, help control blood sugar and raise your energy levels.

But as John Cleese used to say on Monty Python’s Flying Circus, And now for something completely different:  a New York Times article titled Can Exercise Protect the Brain From Fatty Foods?

In recent years, some research has suggested that a high-fat diet may be bad for the brain, at least in lab animals. Can exercise protect against such damage? That question may have particular relevance now, with the butter-and cream-laden holidays fast approaching. And it has prompted several new and important studies.

Ah yes, it’s all that cream and butter that make the holidays a threat to our brains. (If you follow the link, you’ll see a nice picture of a slab of butter to represent the threat.)  Couldn’t be all the sugar people eat over the holidays.

The most captivating of these, presented last month at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in New Orleans, began with scientists at the University of Minnesota teaching a group of rats to scamper from one chamber to another when they heard a musical tone, an accepted measure of the animals’ ability to learn and remember.

For the next four months, half of the rats ate normal chow. The others happily consumed a much greasier diet, consisting of at least 40 percent fat. Total calories were the same in both diets.

I’m wondering how the writer knew the rats were happily consuming the greasier diet. Did the researchers report on the number of happy squeaks the rats produced while eating?

After four months, the animals repeated the memory test. Those on a normal diet performed about the same as they had before; their cognitive ability was the same. The high-fat eaters, though, did much worse.

The article is based on a recent presentation, so I couldn’t find the published study online to look up which high-fat diet the rats with the bad memories consumed — not that I care all that much, since this is a rat study and I’m not a rat.  But I have looked up the high-fat diet used in several other rodent studies. The fat consists mostly of Crisco, soybean oil and corn oil. Those aren’t the fats I’d want to put in my brain – or a rat’s.

Then, half of the animals in each group were given access to running wheels. Their diets didn’t change. So, some of the rats on the high-fat diet were now exercising. Some were not. Ditto for the animals eating the normal diet.

For the next seven weeks, the memory test was repeated weekly in all of the groups. During that time, the performance of the rats eating a high-fat diet continued to decline so long as they didn’t exercise.

But those animals that were running, even if they were eating lots of fat, showed notable improvements in their ability to think and remember.

After seven weeks, the animals on the high-fat diet that exercised were scoring as well on the memory test as they had at the start of the experiment.

Exercise, in other words, had “reversed the high-fat diet-induced cognitive decline,” the study’s authors concluded.

You have to read most of the article to learn how the researchers believe high-fat diets cause cognitive problems:

Just why high-fat diets might affect the brain and how exercise undoes the damage is not yet clear. “Our research suggests that free fatty acids” from high-fat foods may actually infiltrate the brain, says Vijayakumar Mavanji, a research scientist at the Minnesota VA Medical Center at the University of Minnesota, who, with his colleagues Catherine M. Kotz, Dr. Charles J. Billington, and Dr. Chuan Feng Wang, conducted the rat study. The fatty acids may then jump-start a process that leads to cellular damage in portions of the brain that control memory and learning, he says.

Well, since our brains are made mostly of fat, I’d say that depends on what kind of fatty acids are reaching the brain.  It would also depend on whether the creature in question is biologically adapted to eating those particularly fatty acids.  I sure hope they’re not going to take some crazy leap in logic and assume that the effects of rats eating soybean oil tell us something about the effects of humans eating beef and butter.

Of course, lab animals are not people, Dr. Mavanji cautions, and it’s not known if exercise might protect our brains in the same manner as it does in mice and rats.

Still, he says, there’s enough accumulating evidence about the potential cognitive risks of high-fat foods and the countervailing benefits from physical activity to recommend that “people exercise moderately,” he says, particularly during periods of repeated exposure to alluring, fatty holiday buffets.

The amount of exercise required to potentially protect our brains from the possible depredations of marbled beef and cheesecake isn’t excessive, after all, he continues.

Head. Bang. On. Desk.

So there you have it. Ketones and ketogenic diets are good for your brain, but a high-fat diet – which produces ketones – will make you stupid unless you exercise.  No wonder people get confused.

I’m going to go eat more of Chareva’s high-fat meatloaf and try to figure this out.

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49 Responses to “Fat Protects Your Brain — And Harms It, Too”
  1. Marilyn says:

    There’s already an “elixir” being marketed:

    http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Diet/raspberry-ketones-frenzy/story?id=16074044

    Figures.

  2. If the rats are eating high-linoleate oil, then maybe anandamide (a natural cannabinoid produced from omega-6) is slowing their thinking, like some school kid on pot.
    The Salk Institutes time-restricted feeding study showed that intermittent fasting had this same protective effect against high-fat diets in mice. IF plus fat actually outperformed free feeding chow mice on equal calories; and they were thinner.

    One effect of exercise would be that the brain would be supplied with more lactate and less glucose.
    The lactate-glucose balance might be key to the benefits of exercise versus the harms of inactivity – watch this one.

    I think exercise is great and may indeed protect our brains. I just don’t buy their line that what happens to rats eating lab-chow garbage has any bearing on humans eating butter and beef.

  3. John Zacharias says:

    Here is another confusing article. I love how we all evolved our human sized brains and cognitive ability from eating meat, yet vegan is the healthy choice for us.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/sorry-vegans-eating-meat-and-cooking-food-is-how-humans-got-their-big-brains/2012/11/26/3d4d36de-326d-11e2-bb9b-288a310849ee_story.html?tid=sm_btn_reddit

    If we’d never started eating meat, we wouldn’t have enough brain power to debate whether or not meatless diets are a good idea.

  4. eddie watts says:

    i’ve found the wonder of bacon meat loaf!
    buying offcuts of bacon, not rashers, is very cheap and i simply put them through my hand meat mincing machine and then cook in the oven.

    very nice and fatty

    Sounds delicious.

  5. Justine says:

    When is it that ketone levels become dangerous? Is it in type one diabetics that have a really high level? And does it actually lead to kidney failure? All I ever seem to hear about is that they’re dangerous to produce but obviously I don’t believe that’s usually the case. We’d be extinct if our ancestors died of kidney failure in the winter from lack of wheat, fruit, and vegetables.

    The level of ketones in ketoacidosis (which is the condition that affects type 1 diabetics without insulin) is 10-20 times higher than the level of ketones you’ll achieve through a low-carb diet.

  6. Paul B. says:

    Meatloaf was one of my staples before I stopped eating wheat. (I considered it pretty fancy for a bachelor to make!) Does your wife use breadcrumbs? Or does she substitute? And if she substitutes, what does she use? Thanks!

    And on the meat of your article… all I can think about is the scene from ‘This is Spinal Tap’ where the band member can only respond, “but this one goes to 11.”

    No, she doesn’t use breadcrumbs. She adds about 1/3 cup of oats for 2 lbs of meat.

  7. Rikard J says:

    Andreas Eenfeldt go an interview with the Swedish memory champion Mattias Ribbing who is a Low Carb High Fat eater http://www.kostdoktorn.se/intervju-svensk-mastare-i-minne-pa-lchf/ (Swedish, no subtitle sorry). I wonder how much he exercises? :-)

    It must be hours per day.

  8. Tom Naughton says:

    Sorry for the delay in getting to comments today. The blog was down for several hours. Our internet service provider had to do some kind of server reboot to get it going again.

  9. Frank says:

    http://www.ushealthworks.com/blog/index.php/2012/11/flu-vaccine-may-protect-your-heart/

    “Flu vaccinations may prevent heart attacks & strokes” I saw this headline and immediately thought of the ‘Harvard Nurses Study’ you discussed in your ‘Big Fat Fiasco’ speech.

    The health-consciousness confounding variable strikes again.

  10. Jonathan says:

    Maybe the fat eating rats were getting smarter and they were saying “why am I running back and forth just because they play a sound? This is stupid and I won’t do it now matter how much they punish me!”. So maybe it just makes you anti-authoritative.

    That’s the other possibility.

  11. Bruce says:

    Over the past 8 years, I have conducted an ongoing test on field mice and peanut butter. Seems that 100 percent of the time that they come into the house and eat it off of the Victor snap trap, it results in death.

    So I’m thinking peanut butter is bbbbaaaaadddd.

    I conducted the same experiment, but the snap-trap may be a confounding variable.

  12. Kathy says:

    After giving up grains and almost all carbs, it seems I have a new addiction – your blog. It must not be too serious though. I did manage to tear myself away long enough to report for jury duty.

    Have to wonder just how many loyal readers were as frustrated as I was.:-) Glad you’re back!

    Consider it a healthy addiction.

  13. Laura F says:

    Our hamster lives very happily on a diet that would slowly kill me. On the other hand, I let the previous hamster eat a chunk of butter once and it was dead the next day. I don’t know whether that was just a coincidence, but I am pretty sure we shouldn’t be looking to rodents in order to figure out what is healthy for us.

    Nope, not until we see rodents milking cows and making butter.

  14. Marilyn says:

    “If we’d never started eating meat, we wouldn’t have enough brain power to debate whether or not meatless diets are a good idea.”

    If we’d never started eating meat, would we — at least as we know us — be here at all???

    Perhaps, but we’d swinging from trees and spending 80% of our non-sleeping time chewing plants.

  15. Dave, RN says:

    Back in the day before drugs, a ketogenic diet was the go-to treatment for epilepsy.

    Meanwhile… I’ve had epilepsy since I was about 15 (52 now), and on different drugs the whole time. Since I’ve adopted a Real Food, high fat diet, I’ve been able to decrease my Depakote from 1,250mg/day to 250mg every other day, which is a sub-therapeutic dose. I’ve had no problems whatsoever, and I will be going off the med in the next month or so.

    So… GO FAT!

    PS: I recall my parents asking about a high fat diet years ago to help treat me. The doctor said I could try that, but that it wasn’t worth it because I’d get fat!

    That explains why I’ve ballooned up since going high-fat.

  16. Liz says:

    Whew! I got a little worried yesterday because I hadn’t been here in a while.

    If high fat diets ruined your cognitive abilities, I wouldn’t even be able to read this post. lol

    Your Science for Smart People presentation changed the way I read almost everything, forever. It was like a crash course in skepticism.

    Skepticism is healthy, especially with so many scientists proving my “scientists are freakin’ liars” statement.

  17. PJ says:

    I look forward to getting to the office and reading FatHead. Yesterday was a bummer . . . missed my FatHead. Glad you’re back up.

    @ Paul B . . . I use crushed pork rinds as a filler in place of bread crumbs because I don’t use ANY grains, including oats. Yummy! Works as a “breading” on chicken, pork chops, etc.

    It’s nice to be missed.

  18. Kathy says:

    @ DAVE,RN

    Success stories like yours are priceless in the “dietary wars”. Congrats!

  19. NM says:

    Justine: the body is very clever. When it has just enough ketones, it releases a bit of insulin which stops production until it needs some more. Everything is kept perfectly balanced. Almost as if it evolved to do it!

    Type-1 diabetics can’t produce any insulin, of course, so when they produce ketones, there’s no off-switch.

    Thus, unless your pancreas is no longer able to produce insulin, it’s simply impossible for you to go into ketoacidosis, no matter how hard you try!

  20. Galina L. says:

    I also have a very positive experience with ketosis which I use to manage migraines (which look like epilepsy during EEG). It is a great help not only with migraines, but also with PMS and any pre-menopause symptoms . It even motivates me to not to stray from a LC diet because I just feel all over better. May be it is a symptom of a brain and moral damage. We all know how immoral it is to feel good and not to torture yourself. So far LC diet gives me very little opportunity for character building, it is also slightly anty-social – I can’t participate in conversations about how horrible I feel at my age (I will be 53 in several days), which pill is better for a high blood pressure, what to do with hot flashes at night.

    I also have to stand there in awkward silence as people discuss the benefits and drawbacks of their prescription drugs. Very embarrassing.

  21. Paul B. says:

    PJ, that’s a great idea! I’ll have to try that within the next week.

    As for breadings… I don’t bread too many things, but I wanted to try deep frying some chicken with coconut flour and parmesean cheese. I’ll have to consider pork rinds for that too.

  22. Sue O'Donnell says:

    Shortly after a friend started a low carb diet (based on my results!), she sent me a link to a New York Times article about the first study. I took a look at it, and here’s what I wrote to her:
    I took a look at the first “study” mentioned in the article, and I don’t think it’s a very good one. Here are some of the issues:
    A very small sample size of 9-10 rats in the first phase (purporting to show that exercise increases retention of spatial memory).
    Similarly, only 5, 5, 4 and 3 animals in the four arms of the second study (Control Diet Sedentary; Control Diet Exercise; High-Fat Diet Sedentary and High-Fat Diet Exercise, respectively).
    During the seven-week second phase of the second study, which purports to show that “exercise improves High-Fat Diet induced cognitive decline,” it’s not clear whether the four diets were continued, but I would assume so. However, cognition was improved in each of the four arms, with the HFD-Sedentary group (remember, only three rats in that group) improving the most.
    There is no detail about the diet, i.e. what kind of fat (olive oil is quite different from industrial seed oils like saffola and canola, for example), the composition of the other 60% of the High-Fat Diet, the composition of the Control Diet, etc. There’s quite a bit of evidence that in dietary fat is not harmful to humans in the absence of significant or refined carbohydrates.
    The authors assume that “Western diet impairs hippocampus dependent learning and memory functions,” but don’t define “Western diet” or cite authority for the assumption.
    This looks like a “poster” presentation, not published, and not peer-reviewed.
    All in all, not a very good basis for an NYT article. Which article, by the way, didn’t accurately describe the actual poster presentation.

    And yet a pretty typical example of how health studies are reported in the media. That’s why people get so many mixed messages.

  23. @ Justine: From Wikipedia re Ketone bodies: “Individuals who follow a low-carbohydrate diet will also develop ketosis, sometimes called nutritional ketosis, but the level of ketone body concentrations are on the order of 0.5-5 mM (millimolar per liter) whereas the pathological ketoacidosis is 15-25 mM.

    As the mainstream diet is so high in carbohydrate that ketosis is rarely seen without starvation or ketoacidosis, many practitioners mistake well regulated nutritional ketosis for pathological ketoacidosis.”

    So the optimal range of ketosis commonly stated to be around 3 mM is 5 to 8 times LESS than, MUCH lower than, and below the acidosis range of 15-25 mM. For an excellent explanation read The Truth About Ketones & Ketosis here http://goo.gl/lRCMP

    By the way, anyone following a low carb diet that’s ever wondered whether they’re in nutritional ketosis or has stalled weight loss needs to know about this CrAzY new INEXPENSIVE, combination blood Glucose AND blood Ketone test meter kit that includes 10 ketone & 50 glucose strips for ONLY $39.99!! I just ordered one from American Diabetes Wholesale. http://goo.gl/9Zzfp

    In his podcasts & blog posts Jimmy Moore has talked about how expensive the refill test strips for his ketone meter are, but ADW’s price for a box of 10 ketone test strips is only $23.99 which makes them around $2.40 each, MUCH cheaper than the $5 and $6 dollars each Jimmy says he paid for his. Still more expensive than the glucose strips, but much better and makes it less expensive to check BLOOD ketone levels, or check them twice as often for the same cost as the expensive ketone test strips.

  24. Nina says:

    Thanks for this. I’ve heard people rushing to buy raspberry ketones ‘because they’re natural’, rather than making their own. I heard a health food store manager tell a rotund male that natural raspberry ketones would cost a huge amount, because you can get so little from a ton of fruit. He was dismissive of the product the chain store was selling.

    A friend sent me some information about Coursera (some programmes are funded by the Bill Gates Foundation.) This one caught my eye and I had a quick look at the course description. It’s depressingly orthodox and peddling the same old misinformation:

    https://www.coursera.org/course/nutrition?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=december

    Ugh. Same old, same old.

  25. Rae says:

    Whenever I hear conflicting studies like that, I always think that they may as well change both titles of the studies to “We Have no Idea what Causes Anything so We’re Going to Say Whatever the People who Sign our Paychecks Tell Us to.” Meanwhile I will be ignoring their advice as well as the evil drug companies and “treat” myself with a fatty steak with bearnaise sauce, and veggies cooked in butter.

  26. bigmyc says:

    I used to put oats into my meatballs and meatloaves even before regulating my diet in the more primal way that I do currently. These days, I steam cauliflower and then rice it to make a nice meat filler. It’s a very low carb way to fluff up the meat mix while getting plenty of cruciferous veggies into the diet. Of course, the modicom of oats that I would use was relatively low carb as well but in order to avoid grains as much as practical, the cauliflower was a natural option.

    I don’t know if the oats are necessary, but I don’t worry about 1/3 cup in an entire loaf.

  27. David says:

    That did happen with me with the whole “ketones are bad for your kidneys” lecture I have been given by people in my early days of doing the Atkins diet. I guess high-fat diets that made me healthier must be bad because “wheat was a great discovery back in the day” as I have heard about that. Of course the 2 guys who both said that didn’t realize that was when people got sick.

  28. Ulfric says:

    …”article from the U.K. Daily Mail.”
    Oh come on! That’s a crappy rag not worth reading and it thrives on non-news and hysteria for the moronic masses.

  29. Marilyn says:

    More gems from the popular media. From the October issue of “Discover”:

    HIGH COST OF MEAT
    Cubic meters of water consumed to produce one ton of food:
    Vegetables — 300
    Nuts — 9,000
    Beef — 15,400

    (Yeh, right. So has anyone ever calculated the actual food value of a ton of vegetables as opposed to a ton of meat?)

    70% = Proportion of global greenhouse gases produced by meat production (2062)

    (And why has nobody taken note of the amount of greenhouse gas produced by humans eating meat — almost 0 — compared to humans eating healthywholegrains and legumes?)

    Don’t forget they also believe cow farts are warming the planet.

  30. Susan says:

    When I make meatballs or meatloaf I used to use oatmeal for the filler, but now I use about 2 tbsp. of almond meal instead. It works very well, and neither my husband nor I can taste the meal at all. For the binder in salmon/crab/tuna cakes I use ground up pork rinds. That way, they not only help hold the fish together, but the exterior crisps up nicely when fried in coconut oil or butter.

  31. Per Wikholm says:

    This is a great study in AJCN by scientist that must have watched Your lecture “Science for Smart People”. Almost everthing eatible is associated with cancer in observational studies they find. Love the title:

    “Is everything we eat associated with cancer? A systematic cookbook review”

    http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2012/11/27/ajcn.112.047142

    Well, that’s it … we all need to stop eating, period.

  32. Charlie says:

    More news on the benefits of ketosis.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121206142025.htm

    ScienceDaily (Dec. 6, 2012) — Scientists at the Gladstone Institutes have identified a novel mechanism by which a type of low-carb, low-calorie diet — called a “ketogenic diet” — could delay the effects of aging. This fundamental discovery reveals how such a diet could slow the aging process and may one day allow scientists to better treat or prevent age-related diseases, including heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and many forms of cancer.

    So let’s see … ketosis may delay aging, but the diet that produces ketosis will give us heart disease, according to the usual experts. Tough decision.

  33. bigmyc says:

    Of course the oats aren’t “necessary” but they do allow for a lighter textured loaf, which is why I suspect that bread cubes or crumbs were originally used..otherwise, you’d have a very large hamburger on your hands.

    I was just doing the “killing 2 birds with one stone” thing and maximizing the efficiency in my meal preparation by using a filler that is also a healthy part of the diet. Plus, you could feasibly go 1 to 1 on the cauliflower/meat ratio and make a massive loaf. I haven’t gone higher than that so I don’t know if it’ll all stick together but I’ll try definitely try it.

    I don’t worry about a few oats in my meatloaf, but we may try something like almond flour. I believe the point of the oats is to help keep the loaf together.

  34. TonyNZ says:

    Anybody got any information on this study? I can’t find anything on it and it really needs a skewering.

    I find this one interesting…

    “Kath Fouhy, a dietitian, with 19 teaspoons of cooking spread, representing the average daily fat intake for New Zealand men.”

    Really? My average fat intake is about 200g per day, none of it from cooking spread.

  35. TonyNZ says:

    Found it. Full text here.

    Cue take-down in 10, 9, 8, 7…

    Hmmm … strange how that result hasn’t shown up in the head-to-head diet studies I’ve seen.

  36. Underground says:

    “I don’t worry about a few oats in my meatloaf, but we may try something like almond flour. I believe the point of the oats is to help keep the loaf together.”

    Partially, but that’s really what the egg is for, to act as a binder. I think almond meal would work just fine though. It sounds so good I think I may have to give it a try.

    Chareva likes to experiment, so that’s worth a shot.

  37. alexandra says:

    Tom and Galina… A morbidly obese, many medical issues, doctor worshipping, lowfat/pasta for every meal co-worker of mine who is about 45 was teasing me during my office birthday celebration about turning the big 5-0 a couple years ago…I said to the group that I feel great, better than I ever have, and that nothing hurts… her response to me: “F**K You!” Did I mention a high carb diet makes people chronically grumpy too.

    Holy crap, that woman has issues.

  38. TonyNZ says:

    @alexandra

    “I can’t be happy so neither should you” is how I’d describe that sort of mentality.

  39. I’m sure this high fat diet is giving you brain damage. Because every time you read an article about it, you wind up banging your head on your desk.

    That can’t be good for your brain.

    True. If I injure my brain enough, my IQ could drop to the level of the average government health expert’s.

  40. Suzanne says:

    Nope, new research shows you’re both wrong.

    http://suzanneloomscreativity.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/leaving-toilet-seat-up-kills.html

    It’s all in the plumbing.

    I’ve been meaning to write this for ages and have forgotten the original study that triggered my irritation.

    And here I thought I put the seat down because I live with three females. Turns out it was preventative medicine.

    Waaaaaay back in my youth, I wrote a humor piece on “toilet seat syndrome” that the Chicago Tribune published. I’ve looked for it before, but it wasn’t available online. I guess they’re finally catching up on the digitizing, because it’s online now. The oddball single sentences were bolded sub-headings in the original. Here it is:

    http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1987-01-28/entertainment/8701070835_1_operation-women-coffee-table-hairy-mole

    When the article ran, it sparked an hours-long debate on a Chicago talk-radio station. I believe the Older Brother was even dragged into a studio at the radio station where he worked at the time and asked to account for my regressive opinions.

  41. Walter B says:

    Maybe the low fat diets are intended to cut lifespan and hence save social security?

    Maybe, but then Medicare will spend billions trying to keep the same people alive.

  42. Jane says:

    I’m a new fan and I LOVE your blog. Ive been eating LCHF for 18 months. I dropped 30kg with no exercise in about 20 weeks. I recently attended Jimmy Moore’s LCHF down under seminar… I’m upping my fat to new heights, awaiting my ketone meter (off ebay) and really excited about continuing my journey. I don’t miss any of the awful food I used to eat. Bread, pasta and anything that comes in a box with a “heart heathly tick” can bite my skinny behind.

    Welcome aboard, and I’m glad you showed up to support Jimmy. That’s quite an impressive weight loss. Cheers to that.

  43. bigmyc says:

    OK. So it’s become clear that you don’t like mixing cauliflower with your ground beef…or maybe you simply don’t like cauliflower. btw, the loaf binds just fine even at a 50/50 mix percentage.

  44. Walter B says:

    RE: starving to avoid cancer

    T. Colin Campbell protein starved rats in one of his studies against casein. The rats on the (incomplete) vegatable diet did not get cancer — they mearly starved to death. With complete vegetable protein they survived like the casein fed rats.

    I bet reducing protein or eating incomplete protein would work for humans who wanted to avoid cancer too.

    Campbell’s rat studies have no bearing on humans eating real food. He induced cancer in rats by feeding them casein (an isolated dairy protein) and from that he declared that animal protein causes cancer. He ignored his own earlier work showing thats fed whey (another isolated dairy protein) had a lower rate of cancer. Rats don’t milk cows and they sure as heck don’t separate the proteins.

  45. gallier2 says:

    No Tom, he induced the cancer with aflatoxin (in quite huge doses) then the rats that didn’t starve to dead could use the little protein they got to develope their tumors. The plant proteins were so bad that even a cancer couldn’t thrive on it.

    That’s right, he pretty much ensured the rats would develop cancer.

  46. bigmyc says:

    Well evidently, the logical conclusion from Campbell’s study is that the more protein the rats were able to ingest, the more they had a fighting chance of surviving the onslaught of carcogenic toxin. Of course, in all variances, the rats were subjected to a level of poison that would never occur to a human being unless deliberately done so.

    I’m no oncologist, but I think that a cancer cell is less hearty than a normal cell. So if the animal dies due to extreme toxicology, the cancer has no chance of even developing. Protein rats were able to handle the immediate peril of massive poisoning but weren’t able to hold back the proliferation of cancer due to the same event.

  47. Edward says:

    @cancerclasses

    They also have a deal at americandiabeteswholesale.com where you get the glucose/ketone meter kit for free if you buy the $23.99 box of ketone stix. Thanks for the original link!

  48. Edward says:

    Kieran Clarke is a solid gold researcher whether people like the Daily Mail or not and very good friends with Peter Attia and Gary Taubes. I can hardly wait to get my hands on her ketone drink.

    In my experience of working with diabetic dialysis patients, it is the acidosis part of ketoacidosis that is the problem for the body. Giving them an amp or two IV bicarbonate brings them around immediately.

  49. Judy says:

    @ Dave, RN

    My step-daughter has had epilepsy since she was five. Today, we talked about the possibility of her gradually moving to a LC/Ketogenic diet. She has been on meds since childhood. Can you please tell me what foods you included, i.e. Real Foods? Did you include any higher carb foods like potatoes (sweet or white), or milk? Did you tell your doctor what you were doing food-wise to start tapering off the drugs?

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