Sunday, January 06, 2008

What do I eat? Fitday analysis.

Breakfast is usually six egg yolks fried in 40g butter, last time I weighed it. This will just about soak in to the yolks if scrambled, but if I gently fry the yolks to keep the centers soft I usually eat the combination with a spoon. I discard the whites as they are pure protein, without any other significant nutrients. Because I limit my protein intake I tend to "spend" the rest of my "allowance" on meat. I aim for 65g/d of protein but don't stress if I run over.

Lunch is typically about one third of a pint pot of cream. Usually fermented with a yogurt starter culture (plus a little milk added to feed the bugs), occasionally just fresh cream. I threw in 50g of raspberries to Fitday. Sometimes I'll have 85% cocoa chocolate with it instead, other days I'll spread the cream out through the day in mugs of Green and Black's cocoa powder with about a gram of dextrose powder to sweeten each mug.

Supper I put in as a chili mix. Basically I fry (in butter, another 40+grams) an onion, a red pepper and some 'shrooms. Throw in a pound of Sainsbury's economy high fat beef, fry briefly then add tomatoes, garlic, red wine and a seriously hot chili. Cumin (lots) and a little coriander pretty well finishes it. Simmer it down over 45 minutes and serve. I eat about half of the total.

This day I specified parsnip chips. If you part squish them they soak up left over fat. Mmmmmmm. I usually can't be bothered to cook a green veg but do occasionally, especially in the summer when we have runner beans, french beans and spinach in the garden. Maybe a few peas too. We're waiting for the curly kale to get big enough for a winter green, but it's slow! We've got leeks at the moment still.

I put this menu through Fitday and got this:

______________ grams________kcal________%kcal


Fat_____________245________2204 _______85



Nutritionally it gets a number of red flags from Fitday but none of these concern me as they are based on people eating to the Food Pyramid.

Supplements: Offal should be eaten weekly but I get lazy. Liver is my usual source but kidneys are nutritional powerhouses too. There's another post there. I use fish oil (5g/d) to balance the fatty acids, another post there too. I gave up on UK cod liver oil as someone takes out the vits A and D and replaces them with homeopathic doses, and the vit A used is synthetic retinoic acid. So for D3 I sunbathe as much as practical in the Summer and take 10,000 iu/d in the Winter. I get my vit A from liver and eggs.

That's about it. We do bone broths when we get the time. Beef heart makes fantastic slow casseroles. Pork mince is a favorite.

My wife eats all of her eggs, so eats only three a day, usually with bacon. She usually has cheese for lunch and we share supper. She eats a fair bit higher in protein and lower in fat than I do, but we're both lean. Her cholesterol levels are frighteningly low but she's just a youngster, so that's probably fine. Mine are, and always have been, very high. Not record breaking, just very high.

Treats: occasional Thornton's candy bar on a lower than average carb day. Home made ice cream is not a treat, but it tastes like one. Makes an excellent breakfast if you're in a hurry. Recipe:

Pint pot of cream, six egg yolks, 5ml vanilla extract, 20-30g dextrose to sweeten, 10g honey for flavour. Mix and freeze in whatever size portions you fancy.

High cocoa solid chocolate is primarily stearic acid and magnesium, so quite a lot of this sneaks in too. If I need extra calories for a day's concrete breaking I'll up both the cream and the chocolate. Several days of sustained heavy building work and I'll up protein too. Ditto if I have an exercise patch.

We're totally gluten free and almost totally grain free. Legumes only in small amounts. Dairy doesn't seem to be a problem. Another post there too.

That's what it's like...

What do I miss? Nelson's Revenge from the Woodford's brewery and Adnam's bitter. Both gluten loaded.

After a few years eating to this type of menu becomes just a normal way of life. You tend to forget how strange you are.

Actually, the oddest feeling I have ever had was at a goth rock concert, probably VNV Nation playing last year at Rock City in Nottingham. One of the best gigs ever. Very dark, very loud, very packed. Great lighting, what there was of it. Full dress goths with fantastic clothes and body jewelry and everyone moving to the deep roaring beat. But the weirdest thing was they all had pints. Pints of beer. Not the people actually in the mosh pit of course, but almost everyone else. It's a wheat based, alcohol fueled culture that we live in and a pint of beer is a symbol of everything I've left behind. I felt VERY strange, a real odd ball amongst the hard core goths at the gig... Despite external appearances, they were far more mainstream that I'll ever be again!



Anonymous said...

Great post. How come so little protein?

Peter said...

This comes from Dr Kwasniewski's ideas. The basic plan is to minimise insulinaemia and also metabolic work by the liver. Using the highest quality protein minimises the total amount and also the requirements for amino acid transformation. No point in using more than needed. I have the backbone of a post on the influence of insulin on life expectancy across species, on reproduction and on the function of delta 9 desaturase (for converting body saturates to monounsaturates) and a few other things, but the hard refs are not easy to come by in this field.

A nice summary of insulin is available in various places on the net by Dr Rosedale. I think Rosedale lost the plot slightly as he favours monounsaturates over saturates, but this is a minor quibble. He knows what he is talking about in general. This transcript (which has a few typos) had quite a lot of influence on my early thinking.


There's a copy here

Stan said...

Hi Peter,

My eating style is very similiar although I do add some egg whites to yolks (for example 6 yolks and 3 whites), and I consume more protein as meat. Your comments about beer are spot on! I have exactly the same experience - of being a virtual social outcast. Yet I never felt tempted to trade my health in. It is their problem not mine.

I suspect that there are more specific connections between sugar addiction, the high carbohydrate diet and other addictions such as alcohol and drugs.

Stan (Heretic)

Anonymous said...

Also, I think elsewhere you mention that you aim to just stay out of ketosis --- why?

Peter said...

There are four answers to this I think.

First is that, certainly in the short term, ketosis elevates blood cortisol and I'm not comfortable that this is good. Second is that Dr K is usually correct, goodness knows how come, he just is... Third is that I have no need for weight loss so any possible enhancement of weight loss from ketosis would just mean I had to eat more calories. Finally, if I provide enough glucose and a small (non ketonuric) level of ketones for my brain, then I can run my muscles on pure FFA and chylomicrons. No need for the liver to make ketones, take the fat straight from the food to the muscles. Elegant, efficient.

Having said that I really cannot keep fully out of ketosis on 50g carbs per day. I don't stress about intermittent ketosis. Just as well I guess...


Peter said...


"I suspect that there are more specific connections between sugar addiction, the high carbohydrate diet and other addictions such as alcohol and drugs."



Anonymous said...

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Just a couple more, I promise. :)

1) What sort of (weekly) weight loss can one expect upon embarking on a hyperlipid diet?

2) What are your thoughts on nuts like cashews, walnuts and almonds?

Thanks again.

Peter said...

Marilyn Deaton lost 26lb, the trial only went on for 28 days. Personally I've not changed my weight much in 4 years, 64kg is a bit low but acceptable. Weight loss is not my aim, normoglycaemia and normal insulin levels are more where it's at. Weight loss is easy for most people if that's what they want. I have heard of exceptions to this but I think they're rare. I feel 0.5kg weight loss per week is reasonable. The lady with(out) AF is loosing this much per week but we never planned on any weight loss for her at all. That's just happening with enough cream each day. Hee hee, she tells her friends in the office it's low fat yogurt.

Re nuts

I eat them all in small quantities. Cashews are a bit high in carbs and their extraction is very ultra neolithic. Almonds are a flour replacement for various chocolate puddings etc. We have one I've lost the recipe for called "1000 Calorie pudding". Some sort of almond sponge, optimal ice cream layer, extra cream pored over it and then add a few berries. That's 1000kcal/serving, at least. For celebrations.

Generally nuts have rubbish protein, too much fiber, excess omega 6 fats and minimal saturates, but obviously they have their uses.... Some omega 3s in walnuts but they're not really a great source.


ttlaitin said...

I remember hearing that dairy products invoke an insulin response, although the effect on blood sugar is small. I haven't studied that further, though.

do you have any info about that, Peter?

Peter said...

Yes, I've read this too, there's some info from Dandona in this paper.

Certain amino acids are insulogenic, presumably these are present in large amounts in casein, and I guess they are intended to act as growth promoters in infants/calves. Glucose actually falls under these circumstances...

I doubt it's a problem as there are many traditional relatively long living cultures based on milk and yogurt.

I do personally consume much more lipid than protein from dairy but that has come about by chance not plan.


Anonymous said...

Brain is another source of omega-3. It has a very high omega-3/6 ratio, like 20:1 or 30:1 with ruminants or 9:1 for pork. It's also low in PUFA by calories (6.5-10%). Another meat to try is tongue, it has about 16% fat, 15% protein, and 4% carbs (by weight). It's very cheap and tastes like roast beef. I simmer it.

Anonymous said...

Hi Peter...finding your blog has change (and probably saved my life)...I have been eating a high fat, moderate protein, zero carb diet for about two years (before I got pregnant...I just had a baby four months ago), but resulted in weight gain and muscle loss...I was not feeling my best, until a lady from a zero carb forum recommended your blog...WHAT A MIRACLE!!!!!!!...after reading every post at this blog, including the details of what you and your daughter Liz eat...I decided to give it a try to the ratios that Dr. Jan Kwasniewski recomends...I am 5'5'' and even though right now I am 60 kgs. my normal weight has always been 52 to 54 based on the ratios recommended by Dr. K between the main food components of protein, fat and carbohydrates should be in the range of : 1 : 2.5 - 3.5 : 0.8...I am basically eating egg yolks in the morning with butter...and some heavy cream with cocoa powder (that is an idea stolen from your daughter's post) and then a protein and some vegetable for dinner that way I get out of ketosis...which has not been good for my body.
Could you please comment or give me ideas on how to improve my way of eating...I can tell you I am feeling better, but would like to know how do I do to meet my carbohydrates requirements without the veggies, since I don't particularly like vegetables...I wan't to keep insulin spikes to the minimun...I appreciate your help and please keep up with this blog because is helping me and I am sure other people live a healthy life.

Peter said...

Hi bruce,

Here in the UK ruminant brain is banned banned banned. I'd heard the omega 3 content was seriously good. Cholesterol too. I also heard of a brain based fermented sausage from Italy, even found the name (lost it since) but there was no source of supply in the UK. Thanks for the tongue pointer. It's a special order just to get the ox heart nowadays.


Peter said...

Oh, yes, Dr K and pork.

I agree the pork we get in the UK is loaded with omega 6s. I just wonder if the explanation is that Polish pork in the 1970s-ish was less grain based. Potato or even swill fed pork would come out rather well. You could look at a pig as a way of detoxifying glucose to saturated fat. The pig suffers the metabolic syndrome so we don't have to!


Peter said...

Hi Hela,

Thank you for your comments. The sourcing of carbohydrate without insulin spikes is a conundrum. Unlike Dr K, I also avoid all grains, which limits carbohydrate choices even further. I don't really have an answer to this, I suspect that onions and tomatoes spike insulin, as does the glucose powder I use in my cocoa. But the bottom line is that there has to be some insulin to cover your ketosis reducing carbs... I believe Dr K's favourite is actually the potato. A high fat load along side it should blunt the glucose surge and there is no fructose and no antioxidants. Going slightly more paleo, then yams and sweet potatoes have a lot going for them in limited amounts. Have you ever peeled yams???? Disgustingly slimy! But they deep fry nicely and have a distinctly nutty flavour. People who are HLA B27 positive often have a very hard time with starches, for these folks veggies would seem to be needed.

Don't forget offal. I'll put a post up as to why some time. Bone broths are belt and braces re minerals.

Congratulations on your baby. My youngest son is a year old on Sunday. He's great.


Anonymous said...

Great post and great comment thread! Was wondering if we could perhaps get a future post that comprehensively lists recipes that one could employ? :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Peter,
Thanks for responding so fast...I don't do grains either...I have a question for you...I read in your blog that you ferment your cream with greek yougurt...would you mind explainin how you do it, thanks...I live in New York City and live right next to a Greek store that has the most delicious homemade (sugar free) greek yogurt and bought a pint of it, but don't know how to culture my heavy cream. I also bought some fresh lamb kidneys and heart...I also eat every week -at least 3 times- chicken livers they are my favorite offal along with sweetbreads.
I don't know if you ever heard of a book called "Fiber Menace" by Konstatin Monastyrsky...he really goes into detail how fiber and fruits are really bad for GI health and health in general,,,he also describes his diet, he says:"I boil myself 2.5 oz of regular white rice each morning, add 50-60 g of butter (82%), and eat the first batch around 12 pm, the second around 4 pm. That's about 50 g of carbs and almost zero fiber. We have dinner between 7 and 8 pm, which usually consists of a smalls piece of herring (a source of salt) with a slice of butter, and a simple dish without sides, such as lamb or beef stew, grilled chicken, lamb chops, or filet mignon"...he also states..."Rare organ meats (liver, kidney), soft eff yolks, raw fish, and caviar are the most abundant dietary sources of vitamin B6"...anyway I just wanted to relate to you some interesting points of view.
Sorry about my english, I am from Spain -living in the USA, NYC-.
Again thanks for helping me...and Happy Birthday to your son.

Peter said...

Hi Hela,

There's a post here about how I ferment my cream, it's quite simple.

I read a favourable review of Konstatin Monastyrsky's book on the Weston A Price site, mixed reviews else where. His diet sounds very similar to Dr K's Optimal Diet. I feel that rice is probably the least toxic of all of the grains, and he looks to be using the butter to blunt the glucose spike. Sensible. Offal is getting so hard to find in the UK. Liver and kidneys are about it. Occasional chicken liver too. Heart disappeared from our local supermarkets about 2 years ago.


Peter said...

Hi varangy,

I have half a dozen or so recipes I've given to friends on various occasions. I'll have a hunt on the hard drive, tidy them up and stick them up as a post some time.


Anonymous said...

Peter, pork brain is almost as good with a 9:1 omega-3 ratio. Brain has very high cholesterol, like 4x more than eggs per 100 g. Can you recall the name of the brain sausage? I've heard JK suggest sausage like that.

Regarding carbohydrates, I feel the safest are potatoes, sprouted grain (or fermented), brown rice, natural unprocessed honey, carrots, tart or sour fruits, ex: cherries, berries. Sourness reduces insulin spike. So, things like pickles, sauerkraut, or vinegar might be good for blunting the insulin response. Cranberries, if you can stand them, are high in glucose (like 81%) and very low in fructose (16%) and sucrose (3%). I think primitive people mostly used fruits that we would consider sour or bitter, not too sweet. Also eat carbs with some type of fat.

I cannot abide sweet potatoes/yams. They make me want to gag. I'd have to cook them with something strong like palm oil, to cover the taste. I'd rather just eat baked / boiled potatoes occasionally.

Dr. Walter L. Voegtlin wrote in his book (The Stone Age Diet) that all fruits and veggies are best cooked, to neutralize toxins and so forth. He also suggested removing the peel and avoiding fruit with seeds. The only fruit he really recommended to eat was apples, pears, peaches, and apricots in small amounts...

Greek strained yogurt is also very good. I have used "Fage Total" 10%, meaning 10% fat by weight. It also had like 78-80% saturated fat, and fairly low carbs (9%). I'm looking for ways to increase saturated fat while limiting PUFAs. By straining the yogurt (with cheese cloth) you get rid of a lot of carbs and also seems to reduce the UFAs.

Peter said...

Sanguinaccio di Lecce,

Pork based, blood and brain. Won't ship to USA but I'm back to trying to see if they'll ship to the UK. We're in the EU after all.


Anonymous said...

Hi Peter,
Just would like your opinion...I hae been having five eggs for breakfast, very heavy homemade greek yogurt, and protein with little vegetable for dinner traying to keep the protein at the levels you or Dr K tak what I find it very hard unless my dinner is very long did it take for you to get used to so little protein...I find myself craving for more and more of my organs and/or lamb...especially since I started eating like you do at lunch.

Peter said...

Hi misty,

This I agree is the most difficult aspect. Dropping carbohydrate is easy. Keeping protein to 1g/kg/d (actually if you are 5'5" you would be about 64g+/-10%, but Dr K would want you heavier, me too!) is more difficult and needs fat.

The eggs I eat as yolks plus butter for this reason. I ferment my cream rather than using yogurt for the same reason. I go for the cheapest beef as it has less protein per pound and more fat....

There is an adaption period when higher protein is OK, but Dr K suggests even lower levels are prefered after a few months. Like you, I can't get in to ultra low protein.

If I run over with protein I don't worry about it. I try not to do it every day but it is undoubtedly my commonest challenge. Especially when eating as a guest or at celebrations.

When I started LC I did Atkins induction for 3 months before discovering Dr K and reducing protein, replacing with fat.


Anonymous said...

Hi Peter,
Thanks for all the info...I find very difficult to keep the protein low but I am sure I will get use to it...regarding the yogurt I happen to live next door to Likitsakos store...and they make really homemade greek yogurt...ingredients: heavy cream, whole milk, skim milk, and bacteria...but let me tell you that is soo thick that I went back there today to ask them why is so thick and te gentleman who makes them happen to be there and told me that he uses mostly heavy cream as a base...but non-the-less I would like to ask you if you still recommend that I ferment my cream...I get a heavy cream brand "Mrs. O'learys" that is super thick and the taste is amazing...I already google your yogurt maker and looks like a great I was debating between getting it and do how you do it or just keep using the yogurt I get here in the greek store that is basically pure heavy cream fermented with whole milk. I had to have a lunch of ground mutton with some red peppers and lots of butter after my yougurt because I din't feel that normal at the begining of the switch?
Regarding my weight...64 kgs. is way to heavy for me...I think I am more like you in that way...on the thin are 64 kgs at 1,77 which for me should be 54 kgs at 1,67 that I am...and it happen to be my weight before I had my baby girl...I am now 60 kgs...and haven't loss any weight lately.
As always I appreciate the time you take to answer all my inquiries to get my way of eating in the right track.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Peter, do you just use cheap ground beef or are there certain cuts that are fatty which you recommend? Also I'd point out that fatty beef would have less iron per calorie and on a pure weight basis. I found that 95% lean ground beef has about 50% more iron than 70% lean ground beef. So, that's another advantage, you don't get an excess of iron from it.

Anonymous said...

I found one meat that would be just about perfect for someone on the JK Diet - lamb breast. It has like a 4 to 1 ratio of fat to protein, based on the package in the store. It's a very cheap cut, too. Nutrition Data does not list lamb breast, but they show veal breast (separable fat) as having a 5.9:1 fat/protein ratio. I am sure that JK would approve!

Peter said...

Lamb breast is ideal. When I can get it I buy and freeze as much as I can. Economy beef is drifting down in its fat content in the UK, I just add extra butter to the dish. Even belly pork is getting to be more muscle than fat. Traditional butchers look at me as if I'm crazy when I ask for fatty meat. In supermarkets I pick over the joints for the fattiest. The variation is such that no database can be really accurate. Ultimately high fat eating becomes a mind set rather than a calculation exercise. It's ages since I used Fitday seriously other than jotting my weight down occasionally.


Agree re iron. Gave blood last week too.

Anna said...

I've been having ball reading through your past posts since discovering your blog earlier this week. I've noted that you have an infant son and daughter (who must be somewhat older than your son if she is using your computer). I'm really curious how you deal with feeding your family in a sugary and starchy world (my husband is from England and we visit fairly frequently so I am familiar with the British sweet tooth and habit of chips with everything).

As a mom and the family cook, nutritionist, and shopper, feeding my 9 yo son in a way that I feel is healthiest is one of my biggest challenges. His food world outside our home is filled with low fat, high carb processed foods.

When I realized that my "gestational diabetes" that I controlled with a LC diet really was the early signs of an impaired glucose metabolism (7 yrs later), I reduced my carb intake even further, but also my son's carb intake quite a bit, too, and increased the amount of cream, butter, cheese, etc. he eats (he wasn't happy to give up cold cereals). And in California, we are lucky to have access to clean, grass-fed raw milk, which he loves. We also are able to buy meat, eggs, poultry, and fresh goat milk from a local "hobby" farm (mostly pastured but some grain feed, too, but at least not factory farmed). I have been fermenting some veggies (sauerkraut, etc.) and making fresh cheeses on occasion, as well as yogurt and very rich, raw cream low sugar ice cream. We also get an organic "veg box scheme" from a small local farm. So I have been able to drastically reduce the amount of industrial food we all consume as well as the distance it travels.

But I have still reluctantly been buying sprouted wheat flourless bread (with the shortest, least processed ingredient list I can find) and allowing him a few slices daily. I also sometimes make oatmeal for him with whole groats that I sprout first, then dry for cooking later. The sprouted wheat bread is something he can quickly fix for himself and he does usually like to have something high fat on it (ground coconut spread or almond butter, cheese, etc.). But I'm still uneasy about even this compromise on grains. Yet I don't want food to become a battleground where he rebels when he eats away from home. I'm hoping to guide his food tastes by example so that they are natural to him later in adult life. He seems to understand and appreciate that I put a lot of thought and effort into our food (and that I have good reason to cook differently than his friends moms who microwave and takeaway a lot)but the bread and oat cereal is a difficult one. For "sweets", he is happy with very dark (70% +) chocolate and my homemade hot cocoa and fruit with homemade whipped cream. He'll even eat bitter cocoa beans, which is amazing to me.

So I'm always curious how other families manage these sorts of food issues with their kids. If I had known more about issues with grains when he was an infant, I would have done things differently then. But now the horse is out of the barn, so to speak, and I have to "rein in" a few things I had been feeding him and it isn't as easy.

Southern California
www dot against the grain blog dot com

Anonymous said...

Peter...may I ask you do you think greek homemade yogurt is to hich in lactose and that is why the fermentation of heavy cream?...I am curious about your input in sugar (lactose) in greek yogurt.

Peter said...


(BTW do you prefer Hela or misty?) I mostly ferment cream to keep the protein relatively low compared to milk yogurt. I think most of the lactose goes if you ferment it for long enough, and a little is OK anyway...


Peter said...

Hi Anna,

Liz is a graduate living in London. When she's with us she eats with us, and I think I've convinced her that wheat is bad, but she still eats rice as part of a carb reduced (but not LC) diet. My oldest son is a physics undergraduate and I think he lives on pizza. I exaggerate. I just phoned him and tonight was sausage butties. They're both grown up and gone before I went odd diet wise!

We told the nursery that as both my wife and I are gluten intolerant we did not want our son to have any exposure. He gets some carbs at nursery, including a little rice, but at home eats as we do. I guess the nursery carbs are probably OK as he's growing and insulin resistance is not an issue. He too loves 85% cocoa chocolate and I'm thinking of supplying him with this for his mid morning snack. He gets a little fruit for that nowadays. I tried him on a little milk chocolate out of curiosity and he spat it out and pulled a face.

I see the problems coming with friends' birthday parties in the next few years but I'm lucky that the changes in my social life worked around the changes in eating. In fact my drive to learn nutrition came as an indirect result of those social changes.

We lost our hobby farm contacts over a year ago when we moved and now live in an agridesert. Very pretty but industrially farmed. No Jersey cow out back of the farm down the road any more.

So I don't really know how it's going to pan out, but so far so good. Not a lot of input for you really...


ttlaitin said...

by the way, smetana is a russian sour cream product with lots of fat and minimum carbs and protein.

In Finland, stores sell smetana with only the following ingredients: cream + some fermenting stuff.

resulting nutritional content (per 100g):

carbs: ~2g
protein: ~2g
fat: ~40g

smetana is not as liquid as yoghurt, it feels more like butter in room temperature. so it can easily be added to on top of e.g. a steak.

Anonymous said...

What about English Double Devon Cream...I just found it in my supermarket I wondered how it tasted is really good (Made in Corsham, England)...have you tried it and is it commonly used in England?

Peter said...

Wow, smetana sounds very good, quite like what I make, especially the 70% fat variety.

The Devon cream is probably from largely grass fed cows as Devon is one of those parts of England where it is too wet to grow much else! Cornish cream ditto. That's where we're off to in the Spring. It doesn't rain there all of the time, just an awful lot of it. But beautiful when the sun shines.


dave_lull said...

Seth Roberts links to a study and says "Eggs are Good for You."

Peter said...

Hee hee, sneaked that link into the Zetia post... Nice to see other people read Volek. But why the nose clip? Eggs are yummy! Even if you only eat the yolks!!!!


dave_lull said...

The nose clip is used to improve the implementation of his method of weight loss, the Shangri-La Diet, which is based on a 'set point' theory. A nice description of his method can be found here.

As you can see from that description, '[t]he set point idea is not new, but Roberts extends it by claiming that the set point can be modified by diet. This is the second part of his theory: the “taste-calorie association.” Roberts believes that the “tastiness” of the food you consume controls your set point. Specifically, tastier food raises your set point (i.e., makes your body want to get fatter), while bland food lowers your set point (i.e., makes your body want to adapt to being leaner).'

His method attempts to affect the set point by '. . . the taking of a small amount of your daily calories between meals in tasteless doses . . . .'

The nose clips can be used to aid this: 'Nose-clipping eliminates the flavor of foods because it eliminates "retronasal stimulation"'.

He's recommended using nose clips as 'What to do if you're not losing'.

team smith said...

peter, i am wondering how do you get 10,000iu of vitamin D a day? do you take a supplement that is that large or is it spread out among foods and supplements combined? even with the cod liver oil i take which is "high-vitamin" to get 10000iu i would have to take 2 Tablespoons and then i think that would be too much vitamin A.


Peter said...

Hi Amanda,

Yes, I looked at genuine cod liver oil, on the basis that this is the D source for the Icelandic community, but that much A would probably only be OK on a high protein diet, which I'm not eating. There is a certain amount of info on the Weston A Price web site about vits A and D antagonising each other's toxicity, but ultimately working in the sun without much clothing does not produce vitamin A! So 4 X 2400 iu gel caps of D3 per day from iHerb by mail order does the job. I see Dr Eades is selling a 5000 iu gelcap. The 2400s are tiny so no problem to take, alongside a decent dose of cream.

Our son is still fairly heavily breast fed at the moment, so gets a fair amount of D from his mum and will play in the sun next Summer. Next Winter I'll probably chase dose rates of D for toddlers, but possibly just 2400 iu/month or fortnight might be about right. I've got time to think about that one yet.


team smith said...

hi peter, i have another question. do you think it's okay to have tea everyday? if i add lots of cream to it? what about coffee? i don't necessarily like consuming too much caffeine, but i like that i can get in lots of good cream as fat easily.

also, do you think chicken is okay to eat every week? i make a lot of chicken stock, but i have been noticing that when i have a broth soup made with coconut milk i am tired almost immediately after. i can't figure out if it's the stock or the coconut milk.

thank you!

Peter said...

Hi Amanda,

There's plenty of caffeine and theobromine in cocoa, so I don't worry about it. I drink decaff coffee as I had serious issues with caffeine intoxication just before going LC (seven half pint mugs of Java/day; weird neurological signs, like a low grade continuous migraine, left sided without pain or visual disturbances. Just my left side "wasn't there", or "wasn't normal" perception-wise. Went within 2 days of going decaff)and have just stayed that way by inertia. I drink what tea I do caffeinated.

I've not had issues with stock or coconut oil. We're currently on chicken stock until I get the butcher to keep me some bones back, just missed them as the "bone collection man" beat me to them yesterday. I don't see a problem with chicken fillets, minimal fat, just replace missing fat with butter or coconut oil. Occasional whole chicken is certainly something we eat but probably not once a week, more like 1-2 times a month. Just to keep the grain derived PUFA low.


windmum said...

Hi Peter!

I am over 60-years old lady from Finland...
Have been about six years in low-carb-diet..
Carbohydrates less tahan 20g a-day...fats about 100g and proteins mainly over 60grams...
My length is 163cm and weight 77kg...
Want to loose my weight,,,

I´v studied Kwasniewsky..I tryid eating once a day and got more weight..
As a yong my weight was 58kg.
I want to find the system to keep weight lower (ab. 68kg) and steady...
Going up and down makes my mind distress...

Three meals/day is my system...
I have the idea tahat increasing fat makes me fat...
Basicly I like eating fat, always have...Proteins seems to be too much..
Nowadays I also use coconutoil three tblsp. dayly...

Interesting blog!

Peter said...

Hi windmum,

I have some thoughts. I have no answer and don't forget I'm not a doctor! I will try to get my ideas together over the next few days. If it comes out as a believable plan it might be an interesting post, others may also have more ideas than me. Would you mind if I put my thoughts up as a new entry?

BTW thyroid function OK? Other medical problems giving weight gain? Just worth having those out of the way. Are you gluten free? There's an email address on my profile now.



windmill said...

Thanks Peter!

I have thyroksin medication.
Ten years I ate Seronil and triptyl...
Now two years without any...thanks to this diet...

Might say I am glutein free.
Occasionally one ray bisquit in the morning.
Usually one boiled egg with butter and some bacon with coffe.

Lunch time cream and crasberry or chees

Dinner much like yours...I used to drink water or mineral water al day long but now just on meal times.
Anxious to learn to increase fat without fear (or not to increase?)..
I have tried to keep it in 100-150g a day.
Protein is easy to eat too much...
Carbohydrates usually too litle.

Red vine in the evenings one-two glasses.
Thank you for responding

Olga said...

Hi Peter:

Do you try to eat primarily organic food? It's often a challenge to find organic food that looks as fresh as the non-organic stuff.


Peter said...

Hi Olga,

No, and if I were able to choose I think grass fed would come above organic. Obviously organic is more important for OPs on vegetables, but then I don't do a lot of vegetables. The OCs in meat and dairy are probably there but I'm loaded with them anyway from my childhood in the 50s when lindane was routine for human use (mange and louse dressings!!!!).

BTW back when organic tended to mean small scale, local produced, ethically driven I would have been more tempted... When ASDA do organic, hmmmmm...


goodwinnihon said...

what do you consider the best way to eat carbs? should you eat all your daily carbs in one meal (let's say, for breakfast) or stretch it throughout the whole day?

d k said...

I see that you consume a high amount of dairy fat. Have you considered the potential danger of female sex hormones in dairy fat? In modern dairy farming, we milk the cows late into their pregnancies and as a result, milk and especially cream and butter have a considerable amount of estrone, estradiol, estriol, and progesterone. Here's one example of many publications on the subject that you can find on the net:
Hormonal effects of cows' milk on human health

What do you think?

Peter said...

Hi dk,

It's an interesting hypothesis and is another of the "what have we done wrong in the last 100 years?" questions. I have to say that it doesn't really fit my view of how things work. From my point of view both breast and prostate cancer are simply non cardiovascular aspects of the metabolic syndrome, where insulin is driving tumour growth through ILGF1 receptors. In advanced metabolic syndrome the drop in testosterone is actually protective against the more aggressive forms of prostate cancer

but generally metabolic syndrome is the spur for these cancers

On the clinical basis uterine cancer is very common in rabbits fed grain based diets, approaching 80% of those reaching old age. No milk in their diets, but masses of carbohydrate. Dogs develop breast cancers very frequently and few consume bulk dairy. Anecdotally one laco-ovo vegetarian friend has resolved her breast metaplasia problems (two surgeries for fibrous change, both classed as benign) by adopting a LC, very high dairy fat diet... Just anecdote and observation, but none supports the hypothesis, also promoted by by Cordain, that dairy is the trigger for these cancers.

Personally I suspect the change in calories from near total dependence on rice to a mix of rice with vegetable oil and sugar is far more plausible as an explanation for the rise in metabolic syndrome and its cancers in Japan.

But an interesting idea never the less.


BTW the BSE stuff was just a mistake in the argument against dairy and throwing it in makes me suspicious that the author is rather anti meat generally, as do the introduction comments about vegetarianism. I hadn't realised that Japan had been near vegetarian for the bulk of it's history...

Yuri said...

Hi Peter,

You said that "certainly in the short term, ketosis elevates blood cortisol"

Could you please elaborate on this a bit more?

That may mean that ketosis stimulates adrenal glands. So I presume the ketogenic diet would be harmful for somebody with acute adrenal fatigue?

thank you


Peter said...

Hi Yuri,

Can't find my original refs but these give the flavour:

I think personally I would be loathe to drop anyone with pre existing CVD straight in to deep ketosis, especially with the sympathetic tone increases seen. Although Atkins was happy with per acute ketosis, others (Lutz in particular) cautioned in a number of places about the sudden onset of severe ketogenic LC eating. Even with his 72g/d he reports problems with flares of auto immune problems and exacerbation of CHF. If you are on treatment for Addisons you might hit problems as the dose might need increasing temporarily.

I found Schwartzbein a bit hard going but she has a lot of time for treating adrenal insufficiency with diet and is generally LC but not ketogenic.

As I'm well adapted to LC and fat based metabolism I don't worry at all about ketosis. I drop in or out mostly determined by exercise and cake (gluten free, modest carb, mostly almonds, low dose).

But acute onset deep ketosis I'd be cautious with. I've heard at least one anecdote of triggering Wolf Parkinson White tachycardia syndrome.


Yuri said...

Thanks for the answer!

But I have another one, if you don't mind...

I was thinking whether it would be a good idea to eat daily 50-60g of carbs in one sitting, let's say before going to bed. Would it prevent the ketosis?

Than there is this concept, The Hibernation® Diet, which suggests replenishing liver glycogen just before the sleep:

Do you have any ideas in this regard?

Stan (Heretic) said...

Peter & Yuri,

I used to have tachycardia episodes before and AFTER going on a low carb high animal fat diet (Optimal Diet), up until the ~9-th month into the new diet (I started it in July 1999). I had that tachycardia every 3 months or so. They became rarer but lasted longer (up to 2 days instead of few hours).

After the last and the longest 3 day episode in March 2000 I never had it again! I am still on the same high fat low carb nutrition as then. The slight chest pain also went completely away after about 1.5 years into the diet and my stamina improved. No problem whatsoever, ever since.

Last but not least, if you ever have it go to a TCM doctor. Chinese traditional medicine (TCM) is familiar with that and they have some very effective herbal remedies against this kind of tachycardia/panic attacks/palpitations, unlike Western doctors (in my experience) who never seem to have any clue what to do about it, even though it is quite common.

Peter said...

Yes Stan, looks like once you are fully adapted rhythm problems are very unusual, in the early days this may not be so.

Yuri, all carbs at night is the standard JK approach for maximising weight loss. I wouldn't expect it to minimise ketosis as during the day insulin would be absolutely basal and lipolysis, and hence ketosis, maximum. Exercise would probably increase the effect...


Debby Smith said...

I'm so glad to find your blog! I've been eating high fat - approx. 85%,low carb 30%, and moderate protein 65% for about 2 months now. I do need to lose a little weight so it's been great seeing it go down.
However, you say that ketosis elevates blood cortisol. Since my adrenals are sluggish (I take 20 mg. cortisol/day) would ketosis stress my adrenals?

Peter said...

Hi Debby,

I'm not sure I know the answer to this. I'd also phrase it slightly differently. As the body elevates cortisol in ketosis, it does it for a reason (what the reason is is not obvious to me). I'd suggest that if you are Addisonian you might not mount an appropriate stress response to a stressor, if you see what I mean. Weight loss doesn't require ketosis, just low insulin and a caloric deficit. No need to go to extremes...


Anna Delin said...

Interesting with that Italian brain sausage, I had never heard of it before. I browsed some Italian recipe pages and found
"salsiccia cervellata", originally from the region of Puglia, but it seems it is no longer made with brain (cervello).

The most useful link I found outlining the history of this sausage is

But ... other Italian recipes with brain exist. They use it to fill pasta for example. A recipe you might like is "Cervello al burro nero", which is basically veal brain with butter and various herb spices - no pasta.

Congratulations to a fantastic blog. When I read your entries I keep wondering what the h__l happened during the review process of the papers before they were published.

weetabix said...


One question...may have been covered already on here but how do you get your RDA for thiamine?...

Peter said...

Thiamine is required for carbohydrate metabolism, better texts specify the requirement per 1000kcal carbohydrate. To me the RDA is irrelevant. I get some, I need a smidge. It would be very, very interesting to go through all of the vitamins on this basis. I would predict that we acually need vitamins A and B12. These are stored in the liver so are available during fasting. If your diet represents fasting without the weight loss, you should theoretically only need the fasting vitamins. The ones we store. So I eat some liver occasionally...

You stable still? Not heard from my friend for a while so I suspect she's fine at the moment.


weetabix said...

yeah im doing in the process of changing my diet yet again..from Specific carb diet (protein+fat+fruit) to the OD..its more refinement than anything skin doesnt do too well on a diet rich in sugar..but better that than easting gluten!..i think eating a low glycemic diet is a good thing (certainly the australian doc would think so)..i was always v worried about eating too much fat...guess its the way ive been brought up...fat bad sugar ok..better sugar than fat..weetabix with skimmed milk and sugar..anyway i will keep u posted on how im doing..

Alan said...

Hi Peter, a few questions for you please. I hope comments are still open, the posts only have a time stamp, no date stamp. I am a 53yo male trying to build some muscle by resistance weight training 4 days a week. I am VLC/ZC and am trying to get my fat consumption up to 70-80%. What would you suggest as the recommended protein and carb intake for building muscle? Is 1g/kg/d protein still recommended? I eat little veggies (cabbage, leeks, brussel sprouts) and get most of my carbs from cream and eggs. I have an EasyYo and want to try fermenting my cream. How long do you let it ferment? The link you referenced was a bit vague on details. My last blood work showed high iron levels. I eat steak every day, should I switch out some steak for pork etc? Anything else to lower ferritin or should I worry about it?
Thanks for your help.

Peter said...

Hi Alan,

I would just comment that lowering ferritin is easy by phlebotomy and whatever you do diet wise, I can see no reason not to get this done, get a low iron level and then you can use it as a gauge for whether your diet choices or good or bad.

There are no low iron diets, though Lutz suggest LC does actually lower Hb levels. But I would still check ferritin levels.

1g/kg/d seems reasonable but that is assuming you are going to use some carbs to increase insulin a little to help the anabolic effect.

My real problem helping here is that I don't do VLC and I don't do bodybuilding!

But for the fermented cream I divide it in three once it has had 24 hours initial fermentation, let all three sit for another three days and eat one pot each day there-after... I'm out of doing this at the moment but I really need to get re organised now we are settled.

Sorry if that's a bit bitty, these a bit off of areas I follow much!

All the best


Anonymous said...

WOW, I am so happy I have re-read your site. I found your articles a year ago, added you to my favorites (bookmarks) but I have so many favorites that I forgot about you. Well I have just by chance come across your site again, and reading through the comments section, I came to your reference of Dr. Bass. I feel so lucky right now! HA HA. Thanks so much for all your work! Much appreciated.

Peter said...

You're welcome Jenna


Greg Davis said...


How do you feel about optimal meal frequency?

Is 2 meals a day enough room to fit in enough calories and stray from (if any) negative stress effects of ketosis?

Peter said...

Hi Greg,

I eat 2-3 times a day, that's really just how it works out. Breakfast and lunch are mostly cream or soured cream and the rest is at supper time. That's just practicalities and enjoyment...


Aravind said...

Hello Peter,

I know this is an old post but I am slowly working my way from the beginning of time to the present with your blog. I am captivated by your posts!

A few questions (assuming you still comment on old posts)

1) Is this still representative of how you eat? Any noteworthy changes?

2) You wrote "carbs at night is the standard JK approach for maximising weight loss". Why is this and is this preferred in your opinion vs distributing carbs throughout the day?

Warm regards!

Peter said...

Hi Avarind,

Well, life is a bit more random these days. Breakfast tends to be creamy cocoa, milk yoghurt and 90% cocoa chocolate. Lunch happens some days is usually egg yolks in butter with creamy cocoa on the side. Supper is a meal with creamy cocoa on the side... But there is a lot of variation. And quite a few lowish sugar chocolate brownies thrown in.

I'd guess the "carbs at night" is to limit the main insulin spike to when your metabolic need for fat is lowest, ie while you are asleep...


Aravind said...

Thanks so much for the response Peter. Guess you really like your creamy cocoa :-)

The carbs at night seems very counterintuitive to me. From what I've read regarding Intermittent Fasting, a typical schedule might be an 8 hour feeding period during the day followed by a 16 hour fast, most of which is during sleep (at basal insulin levels). I suppose different means to the same end?

I have never really bought into the whole macronutrient timing thing. Maybe there is merit to it, but it seems on par with notion of walking around with a bomb calorimeter to ensure I don't overeat!


Kay D. Mitochondrial said...

Best VNV Gig Review Ever

Peter said...

Thank you. It was a great gig.

Dream Disciples last ever gig, at the Whitby Goth Festival, was pretty good too...


M said...

Re: "Bone broths are belt and braces re minerals.", I found this 80 year old study on whether bone broths were apropriate for babies.

Surprinsingly (to me) those scientists weren't much impressed with their nutritional value. They thought milk was much better, that broths were only useful as a way to train babies to have a more varied pallate, and that "the only protein obtained from the bones was gelatin,
which is well known to be of limited biological value."

Simon Carter said...

Hi Peter,
Your blog is full of wonderful stuff!
I was curious, do you eat any fish?

Peter said...

Some, it varies. Tomorrow is fish in melted cheese...


Sandrine said...

Cocoa with everything!!
Very inspiring for me and my love for it which bring me to just discover the deliciousity of cacao with savory meal!
I am also very encourage as i have pcos and while i improved it a lot with my diet was finding that moderate protein make my symptoms worse and that i don t do well on very low carb and fibers hurt me! Then i have a bit more window to experiment thanks to Dr K and you.

I m also curious and reading about low carb and polyphasic sleep or less sleep as i experience much less need for sleep, greter energy and concentration on high fat diet. Did you wrote a post about sleep? Did something changed for you with this Dr K diet?

Last question, just adopted a cat who choose our house... Which diet is the best ? I feed her now with fish, meat and bones lightly boiled which she likes and seems to do good but would like more advise please.

Thank you par advance, Sandrine

Zoli said...

This post is almost 10 years old now - is it still representative of how you eat today?
High fat, low protein, very low carb?

Peter said...

Pretty much. I've drifted away from chocolate towards cream and macadamia nuts. Still one "normal" meal a day with small amounts of added carbs. If I would change anything I'd drop protein slightly but this is not easy if you want to keep the main meal looking and tasting good.


A Bird said...

Do you still ferment your cream Peter?