Last night, Monday 1st of September 2014, I attended the Low Carb Down-under event with Stephen Phinney, MD, PhD, Chef Pete Evans (Celebrity Chef) and Sarah Wilson, author of “I Quit Sugar” called “The Art and Science of Low Carb Living and Performance”.It was amazing to see how motivated about health and the ‘Paleo Way’ Pete Evans is, it was great how Sarah Wilson was able to cure her autoimmune disease by quitting sugar, and absolutely awesome to see such a great mind as Stephen Phinney show his research and hear him speak in person about his studies into Ketogenic Adaptations.
Pete Evans simplified it well, as seen in the slide below, what is the Paleo Way?
- The minimization of sugary and starchy foods
- The moderation of protein intake
- The liberal consumption of fibrous vegetables, and greens (raw, lightly cooked, and/or fermented, cultured), nuts, seeds, eggs (if tolerated)
- As much dietary natural fat as is needed to satisfy the appetite and support the healthiest brain and nervous system
- An occasional very small amount of seasonal fruit, is purely optional.
- Grains, legumes, conventional dairy products, conventionally raised meats, non-organic produce, GMO’s and processed foods.
- 100% organic humanely raised pasture-fed-and finished meats and organs (sustainable as a food supply and healthiest for the human body and the planet)
Sarah Wilson said it’s about maximizing nutrition, Sarah doesn’t refer to her way of eating as paleo or low carb, because when she cut out sugar, then she ended up eating low carb and by focusing on what to add in and not what we take out we can maximize our nutrition and create amazing yummy foods.
Dr Stephen Phinney did a one hour presentation on his research studies, outlining how he came to observe and experience that keto-adaptation is beneficial for fat loss, metabolic syndrome, athletic performance, a sharp mind and the ability to use ketones as fuel instead of carbohydrates for the brain.
There was a lot of science within Dr Phinney’s presentation, one of the parts I really enjoyed is how he was able to show and explain, as seen in the chart, that ‘ketoacidosis‘ is different to having ‘optimal ketones’. I enjoyed this part as I learned at University, whilst studying nutrition that ‘ketoacidosis’ is dangerous, when people have Type 1 diabetes, the cells cannot use glucose for energy, and if that happens, the body starts to burn fat for energy, and high levels of ketones will start to accumulate in the body. However, now it has been clarified by Dr Phinney that these ketones are not even close to Ketoacidosis amounts. To be in ‘Optimal Ketosis’ means that your blood ketones are 10 x lower in millimoles then if you were in Ketoacidosis. Thank you Dr Phinney for clarifying my haze around that.
However, Dr Phinney did say that this type of eating is not for everyone. Some people can tolerate more carbohydrate then others, and are able to eat a higher carbohydrate paleo diet to be healthy. However, he noted that if someone has for example metabolic syndrome, is overweight (especially in the belly area), or an athlete who wants to boost their performance without having to continually consume carbohydrate drinks or foods, then they should consider a ketogenic diet.
What is Low Carbohydrate?
- Very low carb ketogenic diet – 5-10% Carbs. – 0-20-50 g carbs/day
- Low carb diet – <25% Carbs. – 50-130 g carbs/day
- Mod carb diet – 25-45% Carbs. – 130-250 g carbs/day.
- High carb diet – .45% Carbs. – 250-300 g carbs/day.
Check out the latest research (2014)
Dietary Carbohydrate restriction as the first approach in diabetes management. Critical review and evidence base. Full Article Link HERE
The low-carbohydrate diet and cardiovascular risk factors: Evidence from epidemiologic studies. Full Article Link HERE
Or check out a journal article referred to by Dr Phinney:
Suppression of oxidative stress by β-hydroxybutyrate, an endogenous histone deacetylase inhibitor HERE
This movement is underway! and I’m definitely on board, but would also love to see a change in the official ‘Food Pyramid’ or offical ‘Plate’. Time will tell. Let the ‘paleo way’, ‘low carb’ or ‘ketogenic adaptations’ speak for themselves through time proven evidence.