The Cruise (and Kruse) Report

      65 Comments on The Cruise (and Kruse) Report

I’ve finally gotten over the sensation that my house is rocking on invisible waves, so I guess it’s safe to write about the 5th Annual Low-Carb Cruise. (I was once on a cruise ship for five straight weeks as a comedian. When I finally went home, it was nearly two weeks before our townhouse didn’t seem to be riding on gentle waves.)

You’ve probably heard by now that one of our speakers, Dr. Jack Kruse, was pulled off the ship after someone tweeted to Carnival that he was bringing a biological weapon aboard. I met Dr. Kruse on the flight from Nashville, and Chareva and I later shared a ride to the hotel with him. The next day he was gone and we never saw him again. More on that later.

Once we checked into our hotel in Houston, Chareva and I ended up having lunch with Dr. Eric Westman, his daughter, and a few other people. I was pleased to learn that Dr. Westman uses clips from Fat Head when explaining how low-carb diets work to people in his clinic. I was further pleased when he said I’ve inspired him to include more humor in his presentations.

After lunch, Chareva hung out with some other cruisers she’d met last year so I could rehearse my roast a few more times in our hotel room. (As the Older Brother noted, I’m a bit of a freak for rehearsing. If I’m disciplined about rehearsing, I can afford to be loose on stage.) By the time the pre-cruise dinner rolled around, I felt more or less ready.

I haven’t done a full standup routine in a couple of years now, so it was both a pleasure and a bit nerve-wracking to walk up on stage after dinner and find myself facing an audience of 270 people, all of them expecting me to make them laugh. I was happy with the response, especially since it was a one-shot deal. As any standup comedian will tell you, comedy is a hit-and-miss game. While developing a routine, you write some bits, try them out in front of an audience, drop or rewrite the bits that didn’t quite work, then repeat the process until you’ve got a full slate of material you know works.

That isn’t possible with a one-time roast. The first time you test the material is also the last time you’ll deliver it. My hit-to-miss ratio was high, so I was happy when I walked off stage and finally felt like I was on vacation after weeks of preparation.

Unfortunately, the audio/video gods decided to mess with me again. A couple of my roast bits included video clips. For some reason, they didn’t play on the big screen, even though I could see them on my laptop. I didn’t notice at first, so I wondered why a clip from the movie “Quiz Show” in which Fred Hahn had a couple of lines as an actor didn’t draw a response. Well, duh … nobody in the audience could see the clip.

I also didn’t get a good audio recording of the roast. When I record myself in front of an audience, I like to put a camera in the back of the room to get the full view and let that camera pick up the room and audience sound. Then I wear a wireless microphone and feed the signal into another camera to get a clear audio track of my voice. If I just take sound from the wireless mic, the crowd noise is barely audible, and it sounds as if I’m talking to an empty room … kind of like my speech in Washington.

For whatever reason, that second camera didn’t record, even though I know I pressed the record button just before taking the stage. So all I have is a video with my voice echoing from across a large room, with crowd laughter drowning me out at times. Jimmy Moore recorded the roast from the front of the room, so he’s going to see if he can strip off the audio track and send it to me. If that works, I’ll put it all together and post the roast. If not … well, you’ll just have to trust me that it was a fun show.

Now, about that Jack Kruse incident … a couple of hours after we’d all boarded the ship, I bumped into Jimmy Moore, who told me Dr. Kruse had been questioned and removed from the ship by agents from the FBI and Homeland Security. At the time, nobody knew what had actually happened. We picked up bits and pieces throughout the day, and late in the evening I read the full story online. Here are some quotes from an online news article:

Nashville neurosurgeon Jack Kruse says he’s the victim of cyber sabotage. Kruse was scheduled as a guest speaker Monday for Jimmy Moore’s 5th Annual Low-Carb Cruise on the Carnival Magic out of Galveston, Texas.

But before the ship departed Sunday afternoon, the cruise line learned of a Twitter message from an account containing quotes allegedly from Kruse. The account — @s…krusesays, which contains an expletive — contained messages claiming Kruse had a “vial of Legionnaires for epic biohack.” The Twitter account has since been disabled.

When Carnival learned of the tweet, it contacted authorities, and Galveston police, the FBI and U.S. Coast Guard boarded the ship to investigate.

Authorities searched Kruse’s bags, questioned him and asked him to disembark the ship while they investigated. Kruse said authorities quickly learned he wasn’t behind the tweets. But he wasn’t let back on the ship. In addition to the tweet, Kruse said someone named Lance emailed Carnival warning that a doctor was on the ship and going to conduct a bio attack.

Kruse has a following at jackkruse.com and speaks about diet and weight loss. He once weighed more than 350 pounds, he said. Kruse speaks about Leptin reset and cold thermogenesis, a type of treatment that uses cold temperatures to facilitate weight loss.

Kruse said he believes those who disagree with him are behind the anonymous Twitter account.

“These were all people who had competing thoughts about diet and exercise. This created a huge logistical nightmare,” Kruse said. “To make a joke about something like this is not a good thing to do. Not only is it unprofessional and unethical, it’s quite dangerous these days.”

So some hater got Dr. Kruse bumped. I can’t imagine what goes through some people’s deranged minds. Sure, Dr. Kruse is controversial, but if you disagree with the guy then the proper response is to cite your evidence and prove him wrong. But as Jimmy Moore and others have learned, some wackos out there in cyberspace believe that if you disagree with them about diet and health, you’re now some kind of mortal enemy who deserves any vicious attack they can dream up.

Jimmy has received vile emails calling him all kinds of names and accusing him of being evil … yes, evil.   Jimmy Moore, one of the most kind-hearted and generous human beings I know, is evil to some people because they don’t agree with his views on the benefits of a low-carb diet. Amazing.

Anyway, I hope the FBI finds the nutcase who did this to Dr. Kruse. I also hope the nutcase gets a nice, long opportunity to continue hating Dr. Kruse from the comfort of a prison cell.

But back to the cruise …

On last year’s cruise, the speakers were assigned to different tables every night to give the other cruisers a chance to meet everyone over dinner. Apparently the powers at Carnival decided that was too confusing for the dining-room staff, especially since it was such a large group, so this year we were told to stay put.  I liked being moved around last year, but I’m not complaining, since our dinner companions this year were Fred Hahn, Dr. John Briffa, Denise Minger (who kindly agreed not to kick my ass in public after the roast), Chris Masterjohn, Dr. William “Wheat Belly” Davis and his lovely wife Dawn. How’s that for interesting company?

John Briffa was every bit as witty as I expected him to be based on some email exchanges, Chris Masterjohn entertained us one evening by recounting the time he (as a teenager!) successfully defended himself in court against a charge of disorderly conduct, Fred Hahn was his usual wise-cracking, lobster-devouring self, William Davis proved that even brilliant doctors can have a great sense of humor, and Denise Minger was, well, Denise Minger. I hope she and Chris Masterjohn get married someday and produce a big brood of little geniuses. They could single-handedly raise the average IQ of the American population.

Jackie and Conrad Eberstein

The Lady in Red, Lynne Daniel, works with Dr. Westman.  Some years ago, she was 180 pounds heavier.  That means she was (almost) carrying one of me around with her.

My only complaint about the ship, the Carnival Magic, was the lack of karaoke opportunities. Last year there was late-night karaoke pretty much every night, so many of us hung out in the karaoke showroom after dinner. This year most of the karaoke shows were at 6:30 PM, which doesn’t work for people having dinner from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM. Jimmy Moore and I managed to continue our cruise tradition of singing Elvira together exactly once.

On most nights, the low-carb group packed into the piano bar and pretty much took it over. I was pleased to see that the speakers seemed to be surrounded by different groups of cruisers every night, if not every couple of hours on a given night. I know from talking to people on previous cruises that meeting the speakers in person is partly why they come aboard. Well, they had plenty of opportunities to hang out with their heroes this year.

Dr. John Briffa shared an interesting observation with Chareva one night: “There’s a lot of love in this group,” he said. Yes, there is. Most of us have struggled with weight or health issues (some still are) so there’s a bond, an understanding, that makes for instant friendship. I end up hugging more people on a week-long Low-Carb Cruise than I do during the other 51 weeks of the year.

Chareva dancing with some guy.


Chareva dancing with some other guy.


Dr. Eric Westman dancing with his daughter.

Fred Hahn getting a hair makeover.

I didn’t leave the ship for any excursions this year because I was on a one-man mission to get as many of the assembled experts on camera as I could. As I’ve mentioned, Chareva and I are planning to produce a book for parents and kids that explains how different foods affect kids’ health. We’d also like to produce a DVD companion for the book, and that DVD will include plenty of interviews.

When I was in Los Angeles for the Ancestral Health Symposium, I interviewed Dr. Richard Feinman, Dr. Robert Lustig, Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt, Dr. Mike Eades and Nora Gedguadas. On the cruise, I managed to arrange interviews with Dr. John Briffa, Dr. William Davis, Dr. Eric Westman, Dr. Mary Vernon, Dr. Michael Fox, Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt (again) and Dr. Ann Childers, a psychiatrist who focuses on diet as the cause of emotional and behavioral problems in children and teens. In other words, I’ve now interviewed the Dream Team.

I also happened to meet Dr. Brad Hoopingarner, a pediatrician who told me Fat Head convinced some of the obese children he treats to change their diets and finally begin shedding the excess body fat. Naturally, I asked him to talk about his work on camera as well. Nothing like having a “boots on the ground” pediatrician to explain how bad diets are turning kids into fat diabetics. Dr. Hoopingarner has seen type 2 diabetes in kids as young as four year old – that just shouldn’t happen, ever.

Chareva did go ashore when the ship was in port. She even swam with the stingrays in the Caymans. I’ll be honest: that would freak me out a little. I would’ve skipped that one even if I wasn’t busy conducting interviews. I don’t like to be around creatures with “sting” in their names.

Of course, the Low-Carb Cruise isn’t just about dinners, excursions and late-night fun. The main purpose (or the stated purpose, anyway) is to attend the lectures, and this year’s lectures were excellent. I won’t describe them in detail since they were all recorded on video and should be available online soon. When they are, I’ll post the links. But briefly:

Dr. Eric Westman spoke about low-carb myths. No, a ketogenic diet won’t cause your kidneys to explode, and no, you don’t need to eat 120 grams of glucose per day to have a well-functioning brain.

Dr. Jeff Volek spoke about low-carb diets and athletic performance. The studies he’s conducted demonstrate that athletes perform quite well on a low-carb if they give themselves time to become keto-adapted, with the added advantage of no longer “hitting the wall” once their glycogen stores are depleted. After all, it’s nearly impossible to deplete your stored body fat in a single event, even if you’re quite lean.

Dr. John Briffa spoke about escaping the “diet trap” … that is, the discredited notion that simply eating less and moving more will lead to long-term weight loss. Long-term success is about adopting a diet that controls metabolism and appetite naturally, not going through life hungry most of the time.

Dr. William Davis spoke (of course) about wheat. The semi-dwarf wheat people consume today has only been around since the 1970s, and it appears to be causing a number of health problems– not the least of which is ramping up people’s appetites because of changes in the gliadin protein, which acts as an appetite stimulant.

Monique Forslund spoke about her experiences feeding kids a high-fat, low-carb diet and watching their health and mood improve as a result.

Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt updated the ongoing story of the high-fat, low-carb revolution in Sweden. (Let’s bring that revolution here!)

Chris Masterjohn spoke on why animal fat is good for us and why some polyunsaturated vegetable oils probably aren’t, and he recounted the studies that tried (unsuccessfully) to prove that removing or reducing animal fats in the diet can reduce rates of heart disease.

Denise Minger spoke (of course) about the many flaws in the China Study. She also showed examples – from T. Colin Campbell’s own published studies – of how his previous findings contradict the dietary advice and warnings he now promotes.

Jackie Eberstein spoke on carbohydrate addiction, explaining why addiction to sugar and white flour can be as real as addiction to cocaine. (Since the gliadin in wheat is an opiate, I’m sure Dr. Davis would agree.)

Fred Hahn spoke on exercise and which popular forms of exercise he’d advise against – such as doing squats while balancing on a ball. (Do people really do that? Apparently so. I guess it’s called “balance training.” Looks like a great way to suffer a serious injury.)

Since Dr. Kruse was taken away from us and Dr. Ron Rosedale couldn’t attend, Jimmy Moore invited other experts who happened to be on board to fill those slots by giving 10-minute talks of their own. So we got to hear from Dr. Mary Vernon, Dr. Michael Fox, Dana Carpender and several others. All in all, a great set of lectures before a packed house — so packed, we needed two screens this year for the PowerPoint presentations.

Since the audio-visual gods had already messed with me, the travel gods decided to get into the act as well. After the ship docked on Sunday, we got on buses for the hour-long ride back to the airport in Houston. Chareva and I had booked a 12:49 PM flight home, so when the bus pulled away at 10:30 AM, I figured we had plenty of time.

Nope. There was an accident on the interstate and the bus slowed to a crawl for about a half-hour. We dashed into the airport at noon, figuring we’d make it just under the wire. But for reasons that were never explained to us, United had changed our flight to 12:29 PM. Since the minimum check-in time before takeoff is 45 minutes, we weren’t allowed on the flight. The folks at United generously offered to put us on standby for a 3:48 PM flight. If you don’t travel much, “standby” is an airline term for “we know you’ll never get on that flight since it’s already oversold, but this way we can pretend we’re doing something to help.”

At first they told us the next flight with open seats was at 7:00 AM the next morning. That was a depressing proposition because 1) I’d have to wake up at 4:00 AM, which I hate, and 2) I was really missing Sara and Alana and wanted to get home as soon as possible.  Then two seats magically became available on a 5:35 PM flight. We snapped those up. Naturally, since I was booked on that flight, it didn’t actually take off until 7:30 PM.

Well, it wasn’t so bad. We ended up having a long lunch in the airport with several other people who’d been in our group on the cruise, so it was sort of like extending the festivities. Later we spent more than an hour talking to Anne Luther, a nurse who had suffered a number of health problems when she still ate grains, including horrible pains in her joints and feet that her doctors couldn’t explain.

“They said my pains were idiopathic.”

“What does that mean?”

“It means they’re idiots.”

Too true.  She finally figured it out by doing her own research online. When she went low-carb and gave up grains, the pains went away.

That’s why the work the speakers we saw on the cruise are doing is so important. Too many people are suffering needlessly, taking drugs to mask the symptoms of diseases they shouldn’t have in the first place. As Dr. Davis said in his talk, to a large degree our health-care system is simply treating the effects of consuming mutant wheat and other bad foods. That’s got to change.

After hanging around with the large and enthusiastic crowd aboard the ship, I want to believe we can bring about that change, each of us doing our own small part. That’s the dream. When we all get together on a cruise, there’s a sense of mission, yes, but also a sense of celebration.  We’ve escaped the bad dietary advice … let’s drink to that.

I hope you can celebrate with us next year.


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65 thoughts on “The Cruise (and Kruse) Report

  1. Jeff B

    I’m curious about interactions with people not on board for the low carb cruise (assuming there were some). Were people interested? Curious? Think you’re crazy?

    I only spoke to one couple who asked what our group was about. I gave them a very brief summary and they said they wanted to look into it, so I suggested a couple of books.

  2. js290

    I keep saying we can have universal healthcare by simply eliminating the USDA and FDA.

    The Dr. Kruse incident is more an indictment of the post-9/11 war on terror hysteria than anything else. It’s kind of pathetic.

    Agreed, but since cruise ships have already been targeted, I’m not blaming Carnival.

  3. Chris Krause

    Hey Tom,

    Nice review of the cruise. I really hope it’s still going once I land a regular revenue stream – will be depressing if it ends before I can attend or everyone dies off! Sounds like it was great fun.

    Cheers,
    Chris Krause

    I don’t think the cruise is going away anytime soon.

  4. Nina

    What happend to Chareva’s 10 minute talk on how to grow your own food?

    Great write up. Terrible news about Jack Kruse.

    Nina

    We should probably wait until we successfully grow our own food before giving a talk on the subject.

  5. Dina

    Thanks for posting this report. It does sound like a lot of fun and why shouldn’t you be celebrating? Hope to be able to come next (or next-next or …) year too. 🙂

  6. Dee Miles

    Great recap and journal of your experiences of the cruise. Jeff and I loved meeting you, Chareva, and all the other speakers and people we met, though it seemed like we only met about 1/3 of the group in the time we had. Thanks for sharing the photos. The one at the end is fabulous! You both are so photogenic.

    Well, we just need to schedule a month-long cruise next time.

  7. Brian

    Great report! Great times! You are looking pretty slim these days, Tom!

    Though, I am pretty sure the backdrop in that last pic is the staircase from the Titanic. Are you sure you were on the right ship?

    All I know is, we made it home without swimming for shore.

  8. Marc Sitkin

    Thanks for the great report. Looks like a terrific time. A big thanks to all of those who are working hard and making inroads into understanding the metabolic challenges we face, and for providing the information to help find, and apply, solutions that help.

    Too bad HBO couldn’t find any of you for their “Obesity” special. They missed the answers, and blew a huge opportunity.

    That’s what I’ve heard. I probably won’t watch it.

  9. JonMarc Grodi

    Thanks for the report, Tom. Sounds like a lot of fun!

    I am excited to hear about your future projects! I was hoping you and Chareva would produce some more material. I have shown “Fat-Head” to everyone who will watch it with me, lol.

    JM

    I had a lot of other stuff to wrap up first (the roast, for example), but we plan to get crackin’ on the book this summer.

  10. Anne

    Great report on the cruise happenings.

    The pain in my feet was from idiopathic (not idiomatic) peripheral neuropathy meaning neuropathy without a known cause. I really think it means the docs were idiots and pathetic. As the symptoms cleared it became evident that the cause was wheat! They also ignored my high post prandial blood sugars and now those are under great control with the low carb life.

    Your misfortune in missing the plane and having to wait for a flight was my good fortune. Loved talking with you and Chareva.

    Oops. I fixed the term in the post.

    We enjoyed meeting you very much. See you next year.

  11. Amy Dungan

    I’m so glad we we able to attend this year. The speakers were phenomenal and I brought home a lot of info that will help me reach my goals this year. It was great to see you and Chareva again! I’ll remind John to dig out those frisbees. 🙂

    I’ve been playing a lot and getting better, so he may not embarrass me.

  12. Ricardo

    Hi Tom i found this interesting video about a restaurant in Toronto where i live that promotes this way of eating it even had Gary Taubes i found it interesting and i think you would to just wondering what are your thoughts on it? Thanks.

    Video?

  13. Bob Pfalzgraf

    Tom,

    Great summary and wonderful pictures. I hope you and your wife will be on the next cruise. My wife and I enjoyed it this one so much that we put down a deposit for next year.

    I’ll certainly be there. So will Chareva if we can arrange for a sitter for the girls. This year it was her parents, but we don’t want to lean on them every year.

  14. Brad Midgley

    I would have loved to ask Dr. Jeff Volek a couple questions. I feel great living low-carb, but I feel like my mental performance through the end of intense exercise is suffering. eg, I can no longer score in racquetball or I have to slow way down on my mountain bike to maintain control. Does he make recommendations about eating or drinking during a workout that try to accommodate intense exercise?

    Are there videos we can check out?

    He could answer those questions far better than I could. Perhaps his book will help:

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Art-Science-Carbohydrate-Performance/dp/0983490716/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1337354804&sr=8-2

  15. Simon Shorrock

    Wow! I’m going to get to that next year. I hope you don’t mind but I’ve used a few of your YouTube clips in my 30 day health challenge. They are, without doubt, the very best illustration of what goes wrong when we over consume sugar. Thanks for all your work. Love to see you in the UK some time.

    If they’re on YouTube, feel free. That’s why I upload them.

  16. TheFatNurseRN

    Thanks for the report Tom, it was a very inspirational read. That story about the nurse with joint pain…I could relate. The cognitive dissonance you feel when the same old “advice” never works….and then to just research on your own to come up with a solution that works…really puts a damper in my faith in modern healthcare sometimes.

    As it should. Dr. Briffa had some choice words for modern medicine over dinner. Let’s just say he’s not a fan.

  17. Gilana

    Yes, Jimmy Moore is an incredibly kind-hearted and generous fellow. That is, until you play Scrabble with him. Then the evil is unstoppable.

    I’ve heard he’s a vicious word man. He also takes no prisoners while playing poker.

  18. nonegiven

    Since low carb doctors usually don’t want people eating grains, I wonder who might want to do a double blind study comparing this new wheat with heirloom wheat. Just getting rid of that might help a lot of people who would be unwilling to give up wheat.

    DH has planted a few things. Some peppers and tomatoes aren’t doing well but he says we should have a good crop of spaghetti squash. The last time he planted that he named one of the plants squashzilla. At one point I had 30 squashes at once piled up in the kitchen to be processed.

    We’re already seeing the zucchini attempting to take over our entire garden. I guess I’ll be eating a lot it.

  19. tess

    thanks for the write-up — someday i hope i’ll be able to attend one of these cruises, it sounds delightful!

    …where on earth did you find a decent lunch in Houston Hobby??? 😉

    We were at George Bush International airport. There was a place called Real Food where we found ribs, chicken, brisket, kielbasa, etc. We all ordered a couple of meats and double vegetables for our two sides. The (obese and diabetic) counter clerk asked someone why we were all ordering these meat-and-vegetable combos with no bread or starches and got a mini-lesson in nutrition from Dr. Childers. Let’s hope the clerk makes good on her threat to read up … she could use a change in her diet.

  20. Janknitz

    Thanks for yor great report. Those of us who couldn’t go on the cruise enjoy the vicarious experience. ;o)

  21. The Older Brother

    @js290 — “I keep saying we can have universal healthcare by simply eliminating the USDA and FDA.”

    I am absolutely stealing that line.

    Welcome back, Younger Brother. And thanks for narc’ing me out on the old age thing. I did in fact go to Denny’s today, and had the scrambled eggs with bacon and sausage links instead of Drew’s evil “Build Your Own Pancake” suggestion.

    The didn’t even card me. Sigh.

    Cheers

    Since everyone knows I’m 53 and you’re the Older Brother, I figured the cat was already out of the bag.

  22. marilynb

    Did you notice at the LIDO breakfast buffet that you couldn’t help yourself to bacon? They put it on your plate for you. As I was speculating out loud about that to my cabin mate, the (not low carb) couple at the next table explained that it was to make sure people didn’t take 10-12 pieces of bacon and give themselves a heart attack (that, as they were sitting there each eating two boxes of Froot Loops and Frosted Flakes…)

    I wondered why would grab as much sausage as we wanted, but not bacon.

  23. Dr. William Davis

    Hey, Tom!

    I truly enjoyed our conversations!

    And, if you haven’t already heard it enough, you were an absolute hit on the roast! And, yes, I’m still alive!

    Always a pleasure to talk with you, and I definitely wanted to take advantage of the opportunity before Monsanto gets to you.

  24. Dana

    In looking over some of the drama around Dr. Kruse’s removal it turns out that several of the leading lights of the Paleo online community were previously aware of that Twitter account and approved wholeheartedly. If you look at the related PaleoHacks discussions (can’t blame you if you don’t), you’ll see what I mean. It was “just satire,” they said. It wasn’t just the Twitter account that got the FBI alerted, anyway; apparently someone also called the FBI directly, a “Lance,” whose true identity is yet unknown (last I heard).

    I take a dim view of people who go out of their way to make fun of someone online over disagreements which could be resolved, or at least argued well, in other ways. It’s not like Dr. Kruse is getting into their faces and forcing them to take his advice. I really think the rancor comes from him not buying into the typical Paleo-personality line that fat people are lazy gluttons who just need to eat more vegetables and do more Crossfit. Any time someone doesn’t buy into the lazy-glutton “explanation,” they face rancor like this.

    I find myself more or less having to eat Paleo now, thanks to discovering that I have few to no headaches if I stay off wheat and probably casein. With the exception that I still use artificial sweeteners, ’cause honey may be Paleo but it’s still poison. I might graduate to using the “natural sweeteners” eventually if I find my body can handle it but I don’t feel ready yet (and I will NEVER use them in large amounts). But I can eat Paleo without associating with some of those “Paleos.” I’d really rather. Even if everything they’re claiming about Dr. Kruse is true, they’re still being jerks.

    In regards to all that “new wheat” business, I’m unmoved. I think *all* wheat is bad for us and I think the anthropological record bears that out. Definitely the new stuff is worse, if the research is any indication, but a paleopathologist can tell the difference between a forager and a farmer in ancient graves just by looking at their skeletal structure and apparent bone health. That’s frightening, and I hope people don’t take away from Dr. Davis’s work that they should just go back to eating spelt and einkorn and what-not. (Though if they did, I’d blame them more than him.) Even the traditional Swiss that Dr. Weston Price examined had more tooth decay than any of the other traditional groups he interviewed. And wheat is lower in phytate than oats, which were eaten by an Irish group that had much less decay. I guess dairy is not as good an offset for grain as seafood would be. Kind of a sobering thought, ’cause I’m not against someone consuming dairy if they can tolerate it.

    The cruise sounds amazing as always. Maybe one year I’ll make it there.

    I’ve made fun of the vegan zealots who treat their diet like some kind of True Religion whose blasphemers must be punished — the physical attack on Lierre Keith being an example. I’m sorry to see a few isolated wackos in the paleo world adopting the same mindset.

    I’m 53 with a bum knee, a bum ankle, and a surgically-repaired (mostly) shoulder. If I did Crossfit, I’d probably end up in a wheelchair or another surgical ward. I think it’s great for the young-fit-strong crowd, but it’s certainly not for all of us.

    Dr. Davis makes it clear he believes wheat was never a good food, but it’s gotten worse.

  25. Bawdy

    Dang! Now I REALLY wish I had gone. When it was first announced, I tried to get some of my online LC pals to attend so I would know someone. I guess I’m a bit of a wallflower and shy in these kinds of situations. On the other hand, I’ve emailed you, Dr. Mike, Fred, and some of the others enough, and read all the books and blogs enough, it almost feels like I DO already know you!

    Next year for sure! Maybe. 😉

    Come aboard next year even if you don’t have friends going with you. It’s a big, friendly group and you will make friends on the cruise.

  26. Lynn Savory

    Hi Tom, thanks so much for the summation. Wasn’t able to go this year due to MULTIPLE family crises, however very much intend to next year. So glad you two got to do Elvira again. I was actually thinking about that this week.

    I was one of the 2 Canadians on the cruise last year, along with Laurie Rosen. And I got your movie on Laurie’s urging. Masterful! Hope to convert my junk-food loving, picking eater 15 year old son to a more healthful WOE sometime. Although he does love bacon – so there is hope!

    Bye for now.

    We’ll see you again next year, then?

  27. Docie Pira

    Wait?! I thought Chris was dating Melissa?! Is this a paleo soap opera?

    I have to admit, I don’t follow who’s dating whom. I didn’t know Denise and Chris were dating until I saw them at the cruise dinner.

  28. TonyNZ

    Looks like a good time.

    You realise that you look younger than when you shot the documentary, right?

    I know I feel younger.

  29. Princess Dieter

    Um, no, actually, regarding Dr. K: The twitter account was a parody/”stupid quotes” type of account. As someone who works with humor of this sorts (like the hilarious bits on scientists), you should understand that much. The account comment riffed off Dr. K’s own use of biohacking (the MRSA) and other Kruseisms. It was not a real threat, as anyone with half a functioning brain would guess. Had the “dynamite” been confiscated, that person would be under arrest. Think about it. Who tweets they had their dynamite confiscated and they’re off to cruise and biohack (which is not bioterrorism per se, but journalists and others can be mighty uninformed, too).

    From what Dr. K has written–if I even believe him, and maybe we ought now given http://freetheanimal.com/2012/05/dr-jack-kruse-neurosurgeon-is-a-big-fucking-liar.html — the authorities were interested in who “Lance” the caller was and, says Dr. K, it was just a concerned party. (I’d like to her that from the authorities myself, as that was the person who contacted Carnivall, not the Tweeter).

    It will be very interesting to see how this pans out. Me, I’d love to see a real investigative journalist investigate Dr. K and this event (and perhaps others, like the MRSA one) so we can get to the real truth of it, not that quickie first-spun reports that seemed quite uninformed.

    My head hurts from reading all the comments. It will indeed be interesting to see what comes out of all this.

  30. Princess Dieter

    Oh, and while I avoid wheat/gluten (and encourage others to ditch these) and focus on protein and veggies/fruit–and also find this suits me and makes me feel BETTER– I wish I could do Crossfit. But I have TWO bad knees (one vERY bad and unstable), one bad ankle, and arthritis just about every major joint and my tailbone (geesh). If I tried those squats and lunges and what not, just bury me and my bones right after. We wouldn’t survive.

    BUT…that doesn’t mean I don’t sigh with envy at those who can. Seriously envy their grok-mojo.

    I need gentler exercise…

    Hey, I envy them too. But I’ve got enough sense to know I shouldn’t do what they do.

  31. shums

    Fantastic update Tom. I would absolutely love to go on that cruise. I hope someday I can. Your movie started my family on the road to low carb eating and good health about a year ago. I am now 60lbs lighter and still going at it. I would be further along with the weight loss if not for a few stumbles along the way but that is life sometimes. I learned a lot from those stumbles for sure.

    Maybe Jimmy will choose a Coast of Maine and Atlantic Canada cruise one of these years and I can meet some of you folks if you come off the ship. I live on the coast of Maine in a cruise ship destination city. I will keep saving my pennies.

    On a side note I wanted to mention we have a 9 month old and we have been low carb since a bit before his birth. It is absolutely amazing the horrible food they want us to feed our children these days. Soy formula, puffs, rice cereal, processed baby food and cheerieos. He has never been fed any of that stuff. We make his food and he gets whole foods along with breast milk. He is happy, healthy and developmentally advanced. As bad as our society is with eating and foods I think how we start kids out is even worse. It is really disgusting. Thanks for your hard work and doing what you do.

    You’re giving your son an excellent start. Congratulations.

  32. Peggy Cihocki

    Awesome summary and pictures. I especially like the one of Chareva dancing with “some other guy.” Very romantic.

    Oh, I so hope to make it on one of these cruises. Sounds awesome and there are so many people I would like to meet in person, including you and Chareva. Maybe next year–or the year after.

    That other guy’s a lucky S.O.B. I hope you make it aboard next year.

  33. Brad Hoopingarner

    Hey Tom, It was a pleasure meeting you and everyone involved with the low-carb cruise. It was easily the most exciting medical conference I’ve ever attended. I return to my practice, re-energized to pass on the message. I would add that all my parents are delighted with the new paleo cookbook “Eat Like a Dinosaur” written by The Paleo Parents (on our cruise! So awesome). May have to start selling the book in the office. Regards, Brad.

    Great to meet you too, Brad. I haven’t had time to read Eat Like a Dinosaur yet, but Chareva tells me it’s excellent. Once I give it a look, I’ll promote it here as well.

  34. Alexandra

    I enjoyed the cruise so much. I went without knowing a soul and was matched up with the perfect roommate. I am socially awkward but felt very comfortable amongst this group of like-minded people. I would encourage anyone that is interested to inquire about pricing, it was WAY less expensive than I had thought it would be. I will be there next year for sure…with the same roommate too!

    http://www.lowcarbcruiseinfo.com/

    Be sure to get in touch via this site to get accurate price quotes after they announce next year’s cruise.

    It’s a very friendly, very open group. I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t gone on the cruise for fear of not knowing anyone on board to get over that fear and join up. You will make friends.

  35. Bawdy

    Hey, Shums! I’m in Maine, too, just a little inland from your “cruise ship destination city.” There are several other Mainers I’ve “met” online on the different forums. Maybe we can get together a Maine contingent of LCers!

  36. Marilyn

    What a lovely picture of you and Chareva at the end of this post!

    I’m so envious! What fun it all must have been!

    It was great. Now it’s back to reality …

  37. Junebug

    I need to go next year. Isn’t there a place on one of the forums that lets you buddy up with another traveler? Maybe we could get a FatHead group going next year.
    There was another LC blogger who was a bit disappointed that they didn’t have the speakers rotating among the tables. Maybe Carnival thought the speakers wouldn’t want to be sitting with the ‘regular’ folk, not realizing what a fun group we are.
    Can’t wait to see the lectures posted online.

    Carnival’s complaint was that the wait staff was confused. I know there was some means by which people were selecting cabin-mates through the cruise site, but I don’t what it entailed.

  38. Clerk

    “The (obese and diabetic) counter clerk”

    Nice. Do you routinely judge and make fun of all obese people who don’t follow your diet or were you just being particularly nasty about this one?

    She was clearly obese and told Dr. Childers she’s a type 2 diabetic. So so she’s obese and diabetic. That’s not a judgment, it’s a fact. How in the world you interpret that as making fun of the poor young lady or being nasty is beyond me. When she noticed that people in our group were all ordering meats and vegetables with no sugars or starches, she became curious and asked why. By the end of Dr. Childers’ two-minute seminar on diet and diabetes, the clerk said she wanted to look into the diet. I hope she does. I have nothing but sympathy for people like her, as anyone who reads the blog and is blessed with at least half a functioning brain already knows.

  39. Bridget

    I wish I had gone on the LC cruise instead of the cruise we went on this year. It sounds like you guys had way more fun!

  40. Live Free or Diet

    “They said my pains were idiopathic.”

    Boy, don’t I know that one. My “idiopathic joint pain” got better for a while with low carb, but didn’t fully go away until I tried using coconut oil. I’d rather take coconut oil than Vicodin any day! Thank you and your commenters (over and over) for that one!

  41. Elenor

    “I would’ve skipped that one [“swimming” with the stingrays] even if I wasn’t busy conducting interviews.”

    Oh Tom — you’re missing one of the BEST experiences in life! Yes, they have stingers, but — unless you stomp on one (and you won’t) — they’re lovely, friendly sea kitties! I’ve done it three times now, and will do it again some year. At first, yes, it’s scary to have a bath-mat-sized thing brushing up against your calves (esp. when they come from behind!), but pretty quickly you’re comfortable with them, and it’s great! My husband used to say they looked like Cylon battleships flying through the water (from the original show; dunno what the remake ships looked like.) (And taking the Cockatoo Catamaran sail out to Stingray City doubles the pleasure! Lovely lovely sail, fantastic nature-experience, and a whole lotta fun!) (I’m sure Chareva told you how great it was, too!)

    Looks like a great cruise, thanks for the report. Some year I’ll try to get on a l.c. cruise myself… (Got my fingers massively crossed you manage to get your roast posted — we’ll take mediocre quality just to get it, in case you’re wondering!)

    I still think the freak-out factor would be too high.

    Jimmy says his audio of the roast is pretty good. He’s going to see his producer can strip the audio off his iPhone file and send it to me. I’d prefer not to post the roast with mediocre sound.

  42. Justin M.

    Note to self: book a ticket for the low-carb cruise at some point. Probably can’t be until I get out of college, but from the sound of it the wait would be worth it! I guess I’ll just have to get a little paleo community going at my university to tide me over until the haha!

    Perhaps it can be a graduation present … ?

  43. Bradlee Clark

    You are looking svelte, Tom!

    I don’t know if I’ll ever be svelte, but I seem to be getting a bit leaner over time.

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