Around the Web: Happy Chinese New Year!

Today is Chinese New Year, a day of celebration as we begin the “Year of the Snake” (which sounds inauspicious). Here in Boston, we prepared for the new year with a blizzard that left about 20 inches of snow. Here’s our car:

[1] Upcoming Events: We’ve scheduled two exciting events:

  • On Saturday March 9, Shou-Ching and I will be visiting downtown Philadelphia to give an afternoon of talks, discussion, and book signings at Relentless Fitness. Talks are free and open to the public, but space is limited, so if you’d like to attend sign up online. Many thanks to Grace Rollins of Bridge Acupuncture and Roger Dickerman of Relentless Fitness for organizing the event.
  • On Tuesday March 5, Paul will do an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. Our thanks to Sol Orwell who organized it.

[2] Book News: Two bits of good news:

  • PHD Audiobook: Audiobooks start shipping March 25. You can pre-order here.
  • Kindle footnotes fix: Early buyers of the Kindle edition – those who pre-ordered or purchased on the first three days post-release – got a file in which links to the notes were faulty. The file was fixed on December 13, but for some reason the update didn’t get disseminated properly. If your Kindle version still has the erroneous links, you can update the Kindle file at “Manage Your Kindle.”

[3] Music to Read By: Patsy Cline is “Crazy”

Speaking of Crazy, I’d like to know how the Wilson sisters persuaded Luke Skywalker to play guitar for Heart:

[4] Interesting Items This Week:

The Sydney Diet Heart Study, which we discussed on page 121 of the book, has been re-analyzed based on newly recovered data. Omega-6 fats are still bad. Those who replaced animal fats with safflower oil were nearly twice as likely to die.

Most food-borne illnesses are caused by plant foods, and green leafy vegetables are the worst offenders.

Xanthan gum can be lethal to infants.

Emily Deans discusses Paleo orthorexia. Meanwhile, Dave Asprey may be pioneering a new disorder: “orthoQSia.”

Cate Shanahan is advising the Los Angeles Lakers and has inspired Kobe Bryant to eat from pastured animals.

Prof Dr Andro suggests drinking coffee with your beef.

Seth Roberts comments on a New York Times magazine story chronicling how a boy with juvenile arthritis was cured by dietary changes that remodeled his gut flora.

Peter Frost reports that boys and girls were reaching sexual maturity around age 17 in the 18th and early 19th centuries, but at ages 10 to 13 today. The progression to earlier female menarche and male voice-breaking has been steady since at least 1840, but the cause is unknown.

Beth Mazur offers a surprising candidate for “one of the biggest public health failures in the last couple of decades.”

Steven Hamley argues against the Carnivore Connection Hypothesis.

Finally, a ketogenic diet can reverse the kidney damage induced by the hyperglycemia of diabetes:

Of course, having found a successful dietary therapy, they don’t want to put people on the curative diet, they want to find a drug that replicates the diet’s effects!

[5] A few reader stories:

Catherine reports success with our circadian rhythm strategies:

I am committed [to learning how to make bone broth] because everything else about PHD has worked great for me. The early a.m. light exercise was the ticket for my borderline low thyroid and energy levels.

Greg Lutz in an Amazon review says he’s losing weight without appetite:

I have been eating according to the book for about a month now and I am certainly losing weight. I don’t believe in weighing myself, but I have lost over an inch in my waist in this short time. I have no desire to snack or eat anything sweet.

Joyjoy at Low-Carb Friends has had an interesting experience:

I keep forgetting to mention that part of the reason I love the PHD approach, or at least the wheat-free, grain-free, sugar-free part, is that I hurt way less doing it. I’m bizarrely healthy overall, but I did have wicked migraines that were spiralling a wee bit out of my control during menopause. They seem much improved. And I can easily do days of snowshoeing, skiing, etc.- stuff I haven’t done for years – and not hurt. I’m sure the anti-inflammatory effects of this diet are the reason. (One of the reasons I’m certain is that when I do eat sugar/flour, I ache post-sports.) Fascinating. And so encouraging.

[6] Cute Animals:

(Source)

[7] The Ideal Weight Program from Dan’s Plan and Stephan Guyenet:  Dan’s Plan and Stephan Guyenet recently announced their “Ideal Weight Program”. For $39.99, you get an assortment of content and online tools guiding you through an eating and lifestyle program that promotes weight normalization.

Disclosure: I am an advisor to Dan’s Plan. Dan’s Plan and I considered developing a parallel program to Stephan’s, which would have been released simultaneously and called the Complete Health Program. However, as time is scarce and Shou-Ching and I wanted to focus on our cookbook, we put off the project.

An attractive part of the program is the quality of the people behind it:

  • Stephan is a neurobiologist and obesity researcher whose Whole Health Source blog has been one of the best on the Internet for as long as I have been reading diet and health blogs.
  • Dan Pardi, the leader of Dan’s Plan, is a Ph.D. candidate in neurobiology at the University of Leiden who specializes in sleep, exercise, and circadian rhythms.

Both are top-notch scholars; and both are highly motivated to help others improve their health. Dan, for example, was moved to start Dan’s Plan after his father died too young, in part because he could not motivate himself to adopt a healthy lifestyle.

A premise of Dan’s Plan is that an online support program which draws data from Quantified Self tools, such as a FitBit or Withings scale, can help motivate users to adhere to a health-improving program.

Dan and Stephan make a great team because circadian rhythms are as important as food in obesity, so Dan’s expertise complements Stephan’s. You can be confident their advice is solidly grounded in science.

You can read Stephan’s description of the Ideal Weight Program here. Diet-wise the program offers two choices:

  • A version of a protein-sparing modified fast, similar to the Dukan Diet or Atkins Induction, which Stephan has given the catchy acronym of the FLASH (Fat Loss and Sustainable Health) diet.
  • A “Simple Food Diet” based on whole, natural foods that incorporates many of the themes of Stephan’s blogging.

If you feel an online program based on Stephan’s ideas can help you, I encourage you to check out the Ideal Weight Program.

[8] Faces Therapy: (Background on faces therapy here):

Via Orrin Judd.

[9] Some AHS videos: Videos of talks from the 2012 Ancestral Health Symposium are still being released. This week saw a couple of good ones. Hamilton Stapell looks at the origins of today’s ancestral health movement in the Physical Culture movement of the late 1800s:

And Mat Lalonde spoke on nutrient density – I thought this was one of the better talks at the symposium:

Mat and I will both be serving on a panel discussion of nutrient density at PaleoFX, which looks to be a terrific meeting.

[10] Shou-Ching’s Photo Art:

[11] Slim is Simple: Jonathan Bailor is an author and Microsoft producer who is creating professionally produced multimedia videos to promulgate the low-carb Paleo message. The video production values are really impressive; the message is intended to offer a common-denominator viewpoint that Jonathan thinks most of the Paleo community can endorse. He advocates water, fiber, and protein rich foods like meat and vegetables, and singles out starches – especially, RICE (7:50) – for opprobrium. As an explanation for obesity, he offers the “clogged drain theory of obesity.” There are a mix of things I agree with (we should shop for whole foods from the perimeter of the supermarket) and things I disagree with (we should favor “inefficient” calories that our body resists utilizing). I think the title thesis – that slim is simple – has something to it, because living our ancestral lifestyle will usually normalize weight; but I don’t think it’s a simple matter to live our ancestral lifestyle in the modern world. It doesn’t follow that because slim was simple in the past, it is simple today.

I’m pleased that Jonathan lists perfecthealthdiet.com as a resource at the end of the video. He hopes his video will get to a million views on Youtube, and I hope he gets there. Check it out!

Leave a comment ?

58 Comments.

  1. Hey, Paul – I shivered when I saw SG advertising for Dan’s Plan. I really hope they aren’t affiliated with this group: http://idealweightfairbanks.com/

    This seems to be a franchise operation, as there are “Ideal Weight” websites for almost every city.

    The group that has been in my town for some time and is probably the most unhealthy diet ever designed. The people who sign up lose 10-15 pounds a week by eating nearly pure protein, and get suckered into buying expensive packaged meals.

    I know 10-12 people who have done this program and none keep the weight off. It also seems the company interchanges the names “Ideal Weight” and “Ideal Protein”. I really hope Dan’s Plan isn’t associated with this! If it is, you will be glad you got out and SG will be sorry he got in.

    Here’s a link the their food/supplement prices:
    http://idealweightfairbanks.com/order_form.pdf

  2. The Sidney Heart Health Study is fascinating like a piece of medical archeology, and there seems to be a contemporary literature about it to be explored further. When I blogged about it here I focused on responses to the BMJ to ask “what will it take to convince people”. And I ended up connecting it to SG’s analysis of the Lyon Diet Heart Trial for comparison.
    It seems to me that the Standard Australian Diet of 1966-73 performed pretty well, perhaps as well as the Lyon trial’s Mediterranean diet, when compared with the prudent diet.
    We may not have to go all the way back to Paleo times to solve some problems; I’m gonna find me a 1966 Sydney cookbook and start my own Diet Plan.
    Put another shrimp on the barbie!
    http://hopefulgeranium.blogspot.co.nz/2013/02/the-results-show-that-omega-6-linoleic.html

    • Hi George,

      Very nice post! I think I could live very nicely on the Aussie Diet if I could have the Aussie beach along with it.

      • Thanks! My math is so bad I didn’t realize at first that a 70% reduction and the absence of a 70% increase differ by a fairly significant factor. The advantage ratio (between the actual study stats)is 2.6 (med diet) to 1.6 (1966 diet) I think. So we’ll need to tweak the Sydney 1966 Diet Plan PDH-fashion, by removing the refined carbs and margarine and cleaning up some cooking methods (deep frying, boiling meat and fish to death) popular in the 1960s.

        • The “small print” (footnotes and references in the SDHS paper yields treasures. I liked the fact that one of the original investigators helped author the paper, and that it was co-funded by “the Life Insurance Medical Research Fund of Australia and New Zealand and the Intramural Program of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.”

          If you want to know the truth about PUFA vs SFA, just ask an alcoholism researcher. The alcoholism journals are where evidence of the benefits of SFAs was first published.

  3. Hi Paul,
    I purchased the Kindle edition on Dec 24 2012. It was delivered to my iPad.
    Today I re-“delivered” the Kindle edition to my iPad, hoping to see the fixed footnote links mentioned in item #2 above. Unfortunately, they’re still broken — at least, using the Kindle edition via the Kindle iPad app. Anything you could do to lean on Amazon to fix this would be appreciated. Or, if there’s additional instruction or direction, please let us know (i.e., if there’s something besides re-delivering the book that we need to do).
    Thanks very much.

    • Hi Frank,

      Hmm, peculiar. I wish I could get this sorted out.

      If anyone else has the bad version, can you let me know if you also are having trouble updating the file, and when you purchased the Kindle edition.

      • Paul,

        This is consistent with my previous comments repeated below. My take is currently everyone, even new purchases, will need to contact Amazon directly to get the update.

        http://perfecthealthdiet.com/notes/comment-page-1/#comment-118179

        Same problem for me. I purchased the Kindle version on 12/20.

        I also used Amazon chat to get the update. I asked questions to understand why I wasn’t notified of the update and why the update option was not available in Manage Your Kindle, but it didn’t seem they really knew or were doing anything about it (I was even forwarded to a specialist). My sense was they basically just wanted to send me the update and be done with it.

        Interestingly, I had the same issue with another book, so it seems more of a global Amazon issue than something specific to PHD.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if new purchases do not get the updated version. That would be a good test to confirm.
        Note that these changes are major enough that any user highlight and bookmark type annotations will be lost.

  4. For classic Heart I like ‘Love Alive’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UkLVTdg7Og I wonder how Ann would do on your diet.

  5. I just read today that Willie Nelson wrote “Crazy” then Voila! Here is the video on your site. Weird bit of sychronicity.

  6. Hi Paul,

    On Friday I posted on the Sydney study at http://www.syontix.com. Omega-6s in excess can be credited with declines in total cholesterol due to increased inflammation in the liver brought about by increased endotoxemia and lipid peroxidation. It’s why this study corroborates what was seen in both the Rose Corn Oil and Veterans Administration study.

    Trans fatty PUFAs just amplify the effect. This is why avoiding trans fats alone while continuing excess omega-6 intake does your liver and you no favors.

    As I mentioned in part five of my heart disease series, acute endotoxemia, in contrast to chronic endotoxemia, lowers total cholesterol in primates and humans. The opposite of what happens in rodents.

    Apart from flooding your diet with these fats, the most effective way to lower total cholesterol is by contracting septicemia. I wouldn’t recommend it, however.

  7. Interesting video about the kidney disease… not surprised! I’m thankful that I don’t show any signs of kidney damage based on lab work, but I watched the video because my hyperthyroid cat has had elevated BUN and creatinine, suggesting kidney disease, so we (sadly and reluctantly) have her on the typical low protein diet, which I’m so uncomfortable with, but unsure how to figure out her diet without the oversight and support of a vet (our vet is awesome but conventional). She’s not a diabetic cat, but apparently the long-term hyperthyroidism could have caused the kidney damage. (her hyperthyroid is controlled now by methimazole) Does it seem likely that her kidney function could normalize on a high-fat, moderate protein diet? Currently we’re having to give her subcutaneous fluids every day to help the kidneys… poor kitty! Very stressful for all of us! 🙁
    Sorry, I know this isn’t a veterinary site, but I thought I’d throw this out since I know there are some animal lovers out there 😀
    Thank you!
    KH

    • Hi KH,

      I think cats need protein. Usually protein doesn’t bother the kidneys much if adequate electrolytes are obtained along with it (sodium + chlorine = salt, calcium = bone broth, magnesium, potassium, lithium). I’m not a veterinarian either but I would question that dietary approach. Yes I think high fat moderate protein with appropriate quantities of electrolytes (eg serve meat with bone broth and a bit of potato and salt and cream or the like for fat) would be good for the cat.

    • @KH, as you probably know already, feeding cats dry food on a long-term basis is linked to them having urinary tract problems and kidney problems. I’m no vet and have no special knowledge, but feeding cats high-quality canned food has often helped their overall health, in my experience. I don’t know for sure, but I assumed quality canned food is high in protein and fat (I know it is low in carbs).

      • @KH, I hope your cat gets better! We’ve been feeding our cat raw ground beef or pork for a good 8 months, and just saw the vet for his yearly check-up. The vet asked me what had I been doing differently (especially since I stopped paying 18 euros per vet catfood bag), he looks fantastic and has lost 1kg, quite a bit for such a small animal. Add to that we do train him when we get bored (life without TV) and you’ve got one exuberant cat. And yes, bone broth + salt is a winner. Occasionally he does eat rice.

        • jensk, are you feeding only muscle meat, without bones? That’s not complete food for a cat and dangerous long term. You may already know all this.

          If of interest, you could look at the site I mentioned in my other post:

          http://www.catinfo.org

          This vet advocates raw food, but not just muscle meat and not without some supplements.

          • Thanks everyone for your suggestions! Greatly appreciated!

            I will try giving her some bone broth again, but when I tried in the past she wanted no part of it. We do feed her canned food now, but per the vets recommendation, it’s the low-protein renal diet. Based on charts showing stages of kidney disease, it appears our cat is somewhere in the middle, not severe kidney damage, so I think the protein wouldn’t hurt for now, whereas the protein restriction will probably cause other problems elsewhere. Months back I wanted to try raw foods but met great resistance from my vet who is completely against it. Of course the decision is ours, not the vet’s, but I don’t feel comfortable going it alone without a vet support. Bill- thanks for the site recommendation– I have been there frequently and agree with you that it’s a great site. I did email them yesterday and have info for doing a phone consult… not sure if I can do that just yet but would like to try that soon if I cant soon find a more like-minded vet nearby. I also read online that the subQ fluids appear to be more important than protein restriction so we’re keeping that up and getting better at it and she is so sweet that she doesn’t hate us after the 5 minute procedure, every day.
            Thank you all for the help! 😀
            KH

    • KH, I’ve looked into this for my own kitties. As with so much else in nutrition and medicine (whether conventional or alternative), there’s apparently no evidence to support the standard practice of protein restriction in cats with kidney disease (except at advanced states, when the cat is clearly ill, when it may be essential).

      One of my own vets, highly knowledgeable, acknowledged to me that the standard protein restriction advice is based on just a “hunch.” (Of course they don’t tell you that when selling you the low protein Rx food!)

      To me, restricting protein in an obligate carnivore makes no sense, and some vets agree. I’d recommend looking here:

      http://www.catinfo.org/#Kidney_Failure

      The whole site is great. She does phone consults, if that’s of interest.

      Good luck!

  8. Paul,

    I thought Mat’s talk was really interesting. I now have a very precise response to the “but grains and legumes are so nutrient dense,” argument. Anyhow, how does his findings on pork’s incredible nutrient density jive with your warnings against pork?

    Thanks,

    Lindsay

    • Hi Lindsay,

      Since our concern about pork is mainly in regard to hepatitis E viruses, it has nothing to do with nutrient density.

      • Right, I guess I meant do we eat bc it is so nutrient dense or avoid bc of Hep E? I realize this is a personal choice.. just trying to weight the cost/benefit.

        • I would say you should avoid the most infected organs (blood, liver, intestine) and cook the rest of the pig reasonably well. So pork bellies should be well cooked (as in our Dong Po’s Pork recipe) or cured and then cooked.

  9. Hi Paul, that xanthum gum article is sad. It makes mr worry about gluten free folks who are feeding their young children gluten free baked goods which almost always use xanthum gum. I mean, the gum can’t be “good” for children to eat if it can kill infants, even if some people can tolerate it more or less well.

    I can’t tolerate xanthum gum at all, the few times I eat products with I’ve had terrible digestive issues that I won’t go into.

    Thanks for posting that.

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Yes, it is very worrisome. If it ruins infants’ intestines then I don’t want to eat it.

      • I know these Around the Webs are just linked lists versus diligently-researched posts, but I wish they came with a little bit more inherent skepticism. (Sort of the way we all react to every study that vilifies saturated fat.)

        But here like in so many others attacking xanthan gum is premature. That speculation comes from the Wake Forest neonatologist cited in the article, but we also don’t know if batches were contaminated (there was a voluntary recall earlier), or if the other ingredients played a role (citric acid, potassium sorbate). Furthermore, there are LOTS of things that don’t belong in an infant’s gut that are fine in mine… honey, egg whites… okay those are the only two I can think of, but you know what I mean.

        Anyway, I am not a Xanthan Gum spokesman, but we’ve leapt from “Xanthan gum can be lethal to infants” (I would have preferred “Xanthan gum *may* be lethal to infants, according to one doctor”) to the assumptive “it ruins infants’ intestines,” which coming from Paul is practically gospel!

  10. Paul,

    I thought you might be interested to see the (as) official (as it gets) British response to the recovered Sydney data.

    http://www.bhf.org.uk/default.aspx?page=15680

    It’s a masterclass in hedging your bets… But they did stop demonising eggs a few years ago, so they’re trying!

    • There was a weirder response from a UK dietician here:
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=10863929

      Catherine Collins, principal dietitian at St George’s hospital, London, said understanding of the link between diet and heart disease had become “much more sophisticated” in the 40 years since the study was conducted.

      “Our diet is now naturally higher in mono-unsaturates (olive oil and grapeseed oil) which is protective against omega-6 fats, but for the older generation who still choose polyunsaturated margarines, and fry foods regularly in corn or sunflower oils, a change to ‘vegetable oil’ (grapeseed oil) is all that is necessary to limit risk from linoleic acid,” she said.

      Heck, grapeseed oil is identical to safflower oil, over 60% LA!
      So that’s what 40 years of sophistication has wrought. In charge of a hospital diet, this woman is a public menace.

  11. Astrophysicist (a different one) measures his every body function: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2012/07/the-measured-man/309018/?single_page=true

    “Here you should try to imagine the average physician’s reaction when a patient, outwardly healthy, arrives with detailed graphs of his body chemistry, concerned that something evil is stalking his insides.”

    • Wow, George, that is so cool! On so many levels. Larry must have read about fecal transplants, though.

      I am actually a bit jealous of Larry, as I have an unknown chronic illness, and am a little obsessed about finding the root cause/diagnosis. I am always wishing for better testing. However, I do think that constant monitoring is not always optimal.

      • More by Larry Smarr:
        http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/biot.201100495/full

        He has the Technology! PDH would have been a better fit for his issues than Zone diet. I wonder if Paul ever bumps into Larry at rocket-science picnics? That would be one meeting we’d all like a transcript of!
        You should try and get him on a paleo/LC radio show like Underground Wellness or LLVLC, if he hasn’t already done it.

        • I found his webpage, and read some more stuff that he’s written. I was turned off by the Zone diet stuff, and he also took and possibly still takes statins. But I still admire his ability to self diagnose, better, it seems than his doctors.

          • Where he’s right is that we will totally require computers to make any use of the genome and microbiome knowledge that’s coming it.
            Medicine will need to be digitized and programs will need to be written. Soon your best doctor will be software written by some acne’d kid genius with a bad diet and zero sleep, (instead of a doctor with a bad diet and zero sleep)

  12. Hi Paul,
    Could you please tell me your thoughts on mesquite flour?
    Thank you in advance for all of your advice and support.
    Sana

  13. Thanks for the link love Paul

  14. The presentation by Mat Lalonde was interesting. In addition to the conclusions he discussed, do you have any additional insights into what the data says?

    Second question: sometimes the good work by somebody else serves as inspiration for a similar initiative. Did viewing his presentation encourage you to think, “If I had the time, I’d like to massage nutritional data using the following perspective . . .”

  15. I fail to see the point about nutrient density, once it’s optimal it’s enough. Potatoes are very low in nutrient density, but with butterfat can support life for extended periods. Brazil nuts certainly won’t and they scored high, if they form a major source of calories.

    The concept seems as confused as a soup sandwich.

    And calories are the first and most vital part of nutrition.

    • Hi Sam,

      Great point — balanced nutrition is as important as quantities. Nutrient density matters if it’s easy to undershoot optimal quantities. Then we want our limited food intake to be nutrient dense.

  16. Regarding Slim is Simple (or the Simple Science of Slim), I first bought Jonathan Bailor’s e-books, then yours. I find it hard to reconcile the message of each, as a person who needs to lose 40 lbs of fat to deal with my pre-diabetes. Starches? No starches?

    Would be grateful for any thoughts on the matter.

    • Hi Cassandra,

      I believe in our advice.

      • Thanks for your answer, and for your work. I’ve been trying your plan for the last couple of days, including the 16-hr fast, and feel so intensely satisfied after eating the combination of meat and starch that I find it difficult to have a second meal in the 8-hr interval. This, after doing 4 years of off-and-on low-carbing a la Bernstein (the “off” being periods of manic binging on sweets and starches). I’ll definitely report back on the weight situation and blood sugar too.

      • So why are you promoting a bull artist like Bailor who is the furthest thing from paleo? Have you read his book??

        • http://thesmarterscienceofslim.com/sane-peanut-butter-pie-go-ahead-eat-dessert-first/

          Legumes, artificial sweeteners, nonfat dairy, vanilla whey powder. The ANTITHESIS of PHD, no??

          • Bailor endorses Paleo here http://thesmarterscienceofslim.com/is-paleo-sane/ yes, it’s not 100% PHD but who among us at one time time didn’t think soy, skim milk, beans, and low fat were healthy. Personally, I would just fall in favor of PHD on the starches (and any else). Heck, it wasn’t that long ago that Paul created the dust up in the Paleo community by stating his safe starches theory.

          • It’s a tough call since paleo appears to be anyting anyone says it is these days. But the question is not is paleo SANE, but is SANE paleo, or worthy of Paul’s recommendation to check out. Clearly Cassandra has touched on the reasons why he should have taken a pass on the mass email promo by Bailor to advertise his slick videos. Dairy is not paleo. Egg white omelettes are not paleo. Bailor demonizes starches which are a cornerstone of PHD. The list could go on. Bailor’s diet is SPIN (satiety, passive, inefficient, nutritient dense). That’s really only 1-1.5 out of 4 areas of agreement.

  17. re: Mat Lalonde spoke on nutrient density

    I always enjoy Mat’s contributions and ideas.

    Some of my thoughts from the presentation:

    As well done in the PHD book, nutrients are one important factor of a healthy diet, but not the only one.

    It’s interesting that sufficient nutrients can come from only about 50% of calories, considering PHD can achieve this with about 50% calories from nutrient poor fats.

    Herbs & Spices seem over valued in the scores from a practical consumption perspective, since natural quantities will be small. I wonder if there’s a way to account for that.

    I was surprised nuts and seeds were an order of magnitude more nutrient dense than any non-organ animal (seafood, pork, beef, eggs & dairy), especially since they are high in fat, which would tend to lower nutrient density.

    I was also surprised cacao was so nutrient dense, just after nuts and seeds. I read this to be pure cacao, as opposed to chocolate, which adds cocoa butter. Maybe this is similar to the reason spices score so high.

    After adjusting for water and fiber (caloric weight score), I was surprised legumes were more nutrient dense than any non-organ animal (seafood, pork, beef, eggs & dairy). Noting that soy, cashews, peanuts topped the list and I didn’t see some in the tables like lentils and black beans (did they score too low). Kidney beans were graphed appearing fairly nutrient dense, but I didn’t see it listed in the tables … maybe I missed it, or a discrepency.

    Fruits scored poorly (even worse after adjusting for water and fiber), but Mat commented after the presentation, “I seem to being doing well with more fruit”. So some anecdotal evidence there’s more to foods than nutrients found in nutrient databases.

    • Animal fats are very nutrition dense, starting with 9 calories per gram. In fact, I consider animal fats an essential nutrient, because they are needed to provide, enough calories, have fat soluble vitamins, and assist in assimilation of plant vitamins.

      Protein is limited, carbs should be limited and PUFA’s for sure need to be limited. So saturated fats have to do the heavy lifting. I think a very low fat diet would be disastrous long before a very low carb diet.

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