There hasn't been much buzz about this year's LC Cruise, but a couple of days ago, a tweet from the presentation of one Dr. Dwight Lundell made a little splash on Twitter and FB.  

This spurned a side conversation into which someone going by the handle @liberrocky  that is best begun here:

That conversation reminded me of why I should never discuss science on Twitter.  It is so very NOT suited towards any sort of meaningful conversation, especially if more than two people are involved due to character limits.  So I stated yesterday that I would take this to my blog ... it seems appropriate given that I had just blogged on this very topic recently:  An American Justice System for Food ~ Part I Intro and Carbs in General.  The LC line on carbs is that they basically all turn to "sugar" (glucose) in our bodies and since diabetes (hyperglycemia) is associated with all manner of deleterious health consequences, dietary carbohydrate is toxic!  Such is the unequivocal message from the controversial* Dr. Dwight Lundell.   (*see herehere and here, that last link is to a discussion on PaleoHacks with many more links and opinions on both sides for anyone interested)

For those not familiar with Dietitian Cassie, she is Jimmy Moore's new co-host on his Low Carb Conversations podcast.  I've always thought that a strange fit, given as she's a self-described Semi-Vegetarian and an endurance runner, but whatever.  It is disheartening to see a trained dietitian, however, write something like this:  (from that link)
I was consuming a diet of mostly carbohydrates and unhealthy fats—mostly in the form of sugar, chemicals and processed food. Instead of eating an alternative protein to replace the meat I was intentionally omitting from meals, I simply cut it out.  At the time, I’d read a few misleading research studies on the negative health effects associated with overconsumption of protein.   In response to this, I didn’t think it would be a problem to cut the meat out entirely.   A few times per week, I would eat fish or eggs but never made it a point to include quality protein in my daily routine.   Besides, I’d heard that Americans tend to consume more than enough protein without even trying.   I figured I was consuming enough protein by including soy milk, yogurt and cheese-based meals in my daily routine.  Although I didn’t have symptoms of a deficiency, I doubt I was getting enough protein.   I was constantly hungry, which caused me to continually graze on carbohydrates.  When I decided to become a vegetarian, I was still buying into the “fat-phobia” myth, which meant I was eating foods loaded with chemicals, such as light yogurt, skinny lattes and—I shudder to even think this—the occasional diet soda.   After years of my own research on the topic and reading the findings of well-respected nutrition experts such as Gary Taubes, Marion Nestle and Jimmy Moore, my life as a vegetarian looks much different (and healthier!) than it did back then.

Emphasis mine,  Marion Nestle being the only nutrition expert amongst the three, and Jimmy Moore would not even describe himself as a nutrition expert!  So here you have a registered, licensed dietitian who didn't construct her own diet properly based on her formal training, yet considers a journalist who didn't even include dietary advice in his seminal work or lectures a nutrition expert?  I'm sorry but I am very baffled by this.  I remember reading information on the topic of vegetarianism informally in my teens, and I've known how crucial it is for those who avoid animal proteins to select foods to consume enough complete protein for a very long time.  So... baffled ... OK, back to the topic at hand.  The Toxic Tweet was preceded by the tweets screenshot above (I believe they are most recent on top), and I think it would be a fair read to consider Cassie a fan in agreement with Lundell's message.   So considering that these tweets are even made at all, the tweet that set off the conversations on social media was one that Cassie seemed to deem important information and was not really under character limits to relate accurately.  

Dr. Lundell identified GLUCOSE as *the* most toxic dietary *chemical*, and Cassie all-capped glucose and attached the hashtag #sugarkills.  I'm adding the following emphases:
  • The use of "the" as in singular, versus using "a" or "one of the" indicating plural.
  • Use of the term "chemical" as if glucose is akin to consuming cyanide or something.  Yes, all of our food is ultimately chemical compounds, but referring to it as such in this selective manner is needless hyperbole.
  • Dietary:  This is important to the ensuing discussion on Twitter, because there is a big difference between an ingested toxin and endogenous metabolic toxicity.  This is the primary topic I wish to expand upon and clarify.

OK ... so I have already outlined my issue with the use of the term toxic.  If I had my druthers, it would be eliminated from the vernacular in the health/nutrition realm and be reserved for true toxins -- e.g. substances that when ingested in small, feasible or intentional excess are truly harmful to the human being.   By this definition, there are few if any foods that are toxic, and certainly none of the traditional human foods derived from nature can be considered toxic.  

Glucose most certainly CANNOT be considered remotely toxic on that basis.  There are qualifiers to my response on Twitter, but for the most part it is a fair defense of glucose to say that if it were toxic, the human body wouldn't make it!  But I'd like to take this opportunity to flesh that out a bit, in conjunction with my recent blog post, and I'd also refer you to some thoughts I outlined here:  Nutritional Idiotosis  (no, I won't change the language there, as anyone eating 80+% fat for reasons other than epilepsy or neural afflictions is engaging in an idiotic pursuit.)  The bottom line?  Our bodies go to great lengths to maintain a minimum level of only a few things ... glucose is prime among those.   If your blood sugar level falls too low, you die.  It is just that simple.  From the T1 diabetics I've known and spoken with, this is the concern underlying conservative BG regulation -- it is better to err on the side of hyperglycemia than to risk the hypo. Modern technologies are making this a less necessary trade off.   Yes, chronic hyperglycemia can have progressive toxic impact on  your cells and organs, but out of control blood glucose is not the result of consuming a lot of glucose, it is form profound and improperly treated metabolic dysregulation leading to unchecked endogenous glucose production by the liver -- including failure to shut it down after glucose has been consumed.   Our bodies have such an important need for glucose that it is an "always on" process regulated by suppression.   

Couple this with the fact that if there is an LD-50 for ingesting glucose, it must be pretty darned high or even a corrupt medical establishment wouldn't routinely submit pregnant women to 50-100g bolus doses of glucose.  (I'm aware and open to the controversies over gestational diabetes and the OGTT, but fears over toxicity for a one-time or even a few times test are not among my concerns, those are misplaced).  

So liberrocky took my comment and ran with it with the analogy to ketones.  Ketones can't be toxic because the body makes them.  Tis true.  But it IS ketones -- the excessive production thereof -- that is understood without controversy to be the "toxic" culprit in untreated diabetes (T1) which leads to ketoacidosis.  While we always have some nominal level of ketones in our body, unlike glucose, we don't have any physiological need for them.  Our bodies produce them to replace some of the need for glucose in order to spare protein -- protein (certain amino acids specifically) being a significant substrate for gluconeogenesis (that cannot be sustained on glycerol from fats and other sources alone).   Ketone production is increased in the progression of carbohydrate depletion, also known as "starvation" with the specific purpose to spare protein that might otherwise need to be broken down to provide glucose.  

As I stated in my last discussion of ketosis, I think it is telling, and downright intuitive, that if ketosis were some preferred or desired metabolic state, our bodies would not come out of that state so easily.  Folks limiting protein intake to force ketosis after their bodies adapt to biologically zero carb diets are forcing their bodies into a state they'd rather not be in.  While non-diabetic ketone levels are not toxic (long term effects are unknown, but let's limit it to acute toxicity) in disease where dose makes the poison, they most certainly are.  Then let's look at the notion of dietary ketones.  We really don't have such a thing, though the LD50 for acetone does appear to be a bit higher than one might expect.  Still I wouldn't suggest anyone run out to their local home improvement or beauty supply store to buy the pure stuff and swig it with dinner.  I couldn't find anything for beta hydroxybutyrate or acetoacetic acid but that's irrelevant anyway as I know no dietary source of either.  On Twitter I mentioned an MCT experiment, however, because this is the one thing (and these are the shortest MCT's comprising  less than 10% of CO fatty acids).  As such, MCT is rapidly absorbed and metabolized to ketones by the liver -- it can also cause severe gastric distress, and I would contend unlike an equivalent amount of corn or olive oil, butter or cream.    Still, I would not term MCT's as toxic, though I would use them as an example where overdoing it can elicit a sickened response.   Many use celiacs as evidence that "Wheat is Murder" or blame fructose for every malady under the sun.  Yet a far greater proportion of the population would be sickened by consuming some MCT than would be by consuming wheat or even a pound of sugar in a sitting.

Now I'm not sure if he was just trying being cute (I presume this is a he from the avatar) with the rest of the exchange, but here is where I lose patience with Twitters limits and people like liberrocky.  He took umbrage with my discussion on ketones and then stated that ketones are the fuel we use when we sleep.  It's funny that none of the medical books or even the low carb diet books make mention of this, because under normal circumstances, while ketone production may rise overnight = short term fast, it is clearly fatty acids the "normal" person is primarily burning overnight in the postabsorptive state.  Somehow responding to his tweet got twisted into me not knowing that ketones were produced at all overnight?  Sigh.   I see just now on Twitter that he's trying to draw Robb into this so ...

EDIT/UPDATE:  Liberrocky responded in comments here and apparently it was Robb Wolf who inserted himself into the Twitter exchange.  So as I did in comments, I apologize to liberrocky for blaming him or accusing him of pot-stirring.  He did not do that.  I did not see Robb's tweet, however, because he had blocked me long ago, though perhaps it was because I blocked him recently.  I thought it quite strange on Thursday when I got notice that Robb Wolf had followed me on Twitter.  Here I thought he had given his solemn word to go on Jimmy Moore's "silly ass" cruise and would be soaking up the rays or brushing up his presentation.  It really boggles the mind why he would want to provoke me here .... well, perhaps not.  What better way to avoid answering simple questions like 'what diet are the law enforcement personnel eating in your study' or to go back on your word than to create a false controversy and point fingers at an easy target.  In any case, as I said in comments, I think Robb would do better to brush up on his basic knowledge rather than insinuating that mine is lacking.

I'll issue an open challenge to any of these folks who are denigrating my knowledge and intellect out there in the community -- be it under their real names or cowardly hiding behind the skirts of a stalker.   I am willing to debate any of you on any issue discussed here on this blog.  I'm happy to do it on "your turf" so long as I am given equal copyrights/control over dissemination of the content and any profits are donated to a mutually agreed upon charity.


So, where does this leave us?  I guess what I would like to see is a little more responsibility on the part of folks making claims and painting foods as toxic.  It does not serve the purpose of moving the dialog forward, and it sure as heck isn't ever going to help gain mainstream acceptance.  If anything it will do the opposite.  We do not need to go back to the paleolithic to find healthy human cultures, and many, many of these consume far closer to the 80-10-10 C-F-P ratios promoted by some than the few (if any) who consume 20-65-15 or even more extreme presumably paleo ratios of macronutrients.  Folks can argue over the quality of those carbs, and to a degree there is merit to these arguments, but no human is getting 80% of their energy from "carbs" from green leafy veggies and low sugar fruits.  Somewhere along the line these diets included significant levels of starch (glucose) and/or sugar (glucose, fructose and sucrose) that were directly digestible for energy by the person (added nutrition from gut fermentation may well have been a bit higher, but not more than 10% in any extrapolation I've seen).   You can't support life on low starch low sugar veggie "carbs" ... and the burden of proof is on those who advocate fat rich diets over carbs to prove their case.

In the face of such incontrovertible evidence, declaring glucose toxic IS horribly irresponsible and damaging to the credibility of a community that receives such information uncritically and sees fit to pass it along.  Some of these "live tweeters" pass information along as if they are just channeling it and bear no responsibility for the content.  Nonsense.  If you disagree why are you tweeting it?  Disinformation helps NO one.   Indeed it is almost certainly more toxic to nutritional discourse than glucose could ever be to the human body.

Ultimately, glucose is so toxic, we can't live without it.  


liberrocky said…
Couple things to clarify:

1. When I mentioned that ketones are necessary as they are the fuel we use during sleep ( your response suggested you were ignorant of that fact:
"Where did you learn this liberrocky? Fatty acids are our major fuel in the fasted state." (
Based on that tweet I would say it's pretty clear you didn't know, otherwise why would you asked where I learned it?

2. You are still wrong about ketones and ketoacidosis. It is the dehydration brought on by excessive blood sugar ( that is the root cause not the ketones. The same ketone level that is safe in a LC'er is dangerous in diabetic. So get over the ketones already.

3. Robb broke into the conversion not the other way around:

4. Not eating carbohydrates is not starvation to say otherwise is absurd.
People can get along fine without carbs. Will they have the best explosive athletic performance? Not likely. Will their thyroids levels be ideal? Probably not (unless they are consuming animal thyroid glands or very iodine rich diets). Are they starving? Unless they are not getting enough of the 40 or so essential nutrients or enough calories then no they are not starving.

Oh and for the record:

I eat carbs, mostly dairy and tubers, limited to a couple evenings a week and post workout. I target a C20-P35-F45 on most days with increased carbs on workout days. My activity level is high I walk briskly 2 miles a day, lift heavy and sprint.

I also consume 2 tbs of MCT oil a day in the form of capric and caprylic acid, I avoid coconut oil as its lauric acid content can raise LDL. This level, at least for me, does not cause gastric distress but does result in extreme awesomeness.
Jane Karlsson said…
Glucose is toxic, is it. Groan. It's actually an essential part of the antioxidant system. It gets metabolised in the pentose phosphate pathway to make NADPH which keeps glutathione reduced. Without NADPH glutathione is useless. Yes I know this is what Kruse says, that's probably why nobody believes it.

Anyway, ketones can also be antioxidant. Beta hydroxybutyrate is a very efficient scavenger of hydroxyl radicals.
Those are the ones produced by excess iron. A much better way of protecting your mitochondria from hydroxyl radicals is to eat a diet high in manganese. Which usually comes together with quite a lot of ... glucose. Bad luck Cassie.
carbsane said…
1. When I mentioned that ketones are necessary as they are the fuel we use during sleep ( your response suggested you were ignorant of that fact:"Where did you learn this liberrocky? Fatty acids are our major fuel in the fasted state." (

Based on that tweet I would say it's pretty clear you didn't know, otherwise why would you asked where I learned it?

Ketones are NOT necessary as they are not THE fuel we use during sleep. They are a minor fuel formed because fatty acids are the major fuel used. You link to a paper on breath ketones that doesn't support your assertion. This isn't controversial liberrocky.

Robb broke into the conversion not the other way around:

Ahhhh, that explains a lot. What a cad he turned out to be. He blocked me long ago so I don't see his tweets, or perhaps because he followed me yesterday and I decided to return the favor and block him, I didn't see his remark. If he wants to grow up and drop the block I'll reciprocate. So my apologies to you for thinking you were pot-stirring, I'll edit my post.

Robb Wolf should really brush up on his own knowledge before accusing me of not knowing basics. And this is where Twitter is a pain because I was responding to specific wording of your tweet and apparently (?) you had different meaning. Ketones are indeed "a" fuel used during sleep, a very minor one, however, unless one is a ways into starvation. I don't believe I have read anywhere in an academic source that ketones are needed, but if you can find me a reputable citation for that assertion, I'm all ears.

To be continued...
carbsane said…
Even Jack Kruse is right some of the time. :D Seriously, nobody gets to be a dentist and a neurosurgeon without some decent gray matter, I just think he went off the rails.
carbsane said…
2. You are still wrong about ketones and ketoacidosis. It is the dehydration brought on by excessive blood sugar ( that is the root cause not the ketones. The same ketone level that is safe in a LC'er is dangerous in diabetic. So get over the ketones already.

Can you cite me a medical or physiology text that backs this up? Seriously, go read one. Though it could be better sourced, even Wikipedia says this: "Ketoacidosis is a pathological metabolic state marked by extreme and uncontrolled ketosis. In ketoacidosis, the body fails to adequately regulate ketone production causing such a severe accumulation of keto acidsthat the pH of the blood is substantially decreased. In extreme cases ketoacidosis can be fatal"

I am not saying that ketosis is dangerous in a low carber. Long term chronic ketosis as a preferred metabolic state? I would say that the burden of proof is upon those promoting this as regards safety and such.

4. Not eating carbohydrates is not starvation to say otherwise is absurd.

People can get along fine without carbs. Will they have the best explosive athletic performance? Not likely. Will their thyroids levels be ideal? Probably not (unless they are consuming animal thyroid glands or very iodine rich diets). Are they starving? Unless they are not getting enough of the 40 or so essential nutrients or enough calories then no they are not starving.

The VLC state is metabolic "starvation". From The Oxford Handbook of Medical Sciences: "Carbohydrate-free diets (such as the ‘Atkins diet’) work by tricking the body into starvation mode (pp.166–7), with energy obtained from protein and fat metabolism due to the prevailing glucagon signal. "

Starvation Mode = upregulated gluconeogenesis, ketogenesis, and glyceroneogenesis.

As to how people get along? "Fine"?? This is not what the goal should be, right? All of this nonsense adrenal fatigue is nothing more than the metabolic response to long term carb restriction which the body apparently doesn't distinguish from starvation.

Lastly, as to your diet, 2T MCT is generally tolerated, but many (myself included, but not with any predictability unfortunately so I use them sparingly so as not to waste the bottle) react unfavorably to them. That's not me saying it, you can look at pretty much any discussion of them on the internet where those actually using them weigh in and cramping and "colon cleansing" is a frequent response.
Nigel Kinbrum said…
Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

I'm becoming really cruel in my old age! :-D
carbsane said…
Here's page 844 in Textbook of Medical Physiology, 11th Ed. Guyton and Hall. Discussing ketosis and ketone metabolism. Correct me if I'm wrong here, but it seems that ketosis -- as in elevated blood levels -- arises from ketones in excess of that which the cells can use for energy. Therefore, elevated ketone levels indicate a saturation of the cellular rate of ketone metabolism for energy. If circulating ketone levels increase this may mean you are nominally metabolizing more ketones for energy, but you've maxed this out and they are just backing up in your blood stream. As ketone levels rise from there you are just seeing more and more backing up into the blood stream. Please explain where this interpretation is incorrect.
yngvai said…
Liberrocky, you are the one who is incorrect about ketones and ketoacidosis. The ketone levels in the blood of a diabetic in ketoacidosis are dramatically higher than a low carber under dietary ketosis. The blood pH of a low carber is pretty much normal, but the blood pH of a diabetic in ketoacidosis is dangerously low due to the extremely high levels of ketones.

The reason ketones don't climb dangerously high in a low-carber is because of that "evil" hormone called insulin. Insulin keeps the liver from producing ketones uncontrollably, acting as a brake on ketone production. A type I diabetic cannot produce insulin, and thus there is no brake to stop ketone production. Thus, ketones climb higher and higher and the blood becomes more and more acidic as a result.
Nigel Kinbrum said…
"2. You are still wrong about ketones and ketoacidosis. It is the dehydration brought on by excessive blood sugar ( )
that is the root cause not the ketones."

People have survived serum glucose of 147.6 mmol/L (2,656 mg/dL). That's 26.56g of glucose/litre!
Nigel Kinbrum said…
Exactly! Serum FFAs/NEFAs rise much more quickly under fasting conditions (when serum insulin is low) than serum ketones. You had a graph of this in a previous post.
carbsane said…
Yes, that evil hormone - grin - is also the reason why DKA is rare in T2 (really only once T2 has progressed to T1) because elevated basal insulin keeps FAs and ketone production in check.
carbsane said…
Yes indeedy I did, but can't expect people to read the links, right?

Ketones as major energy source doesn't even occur in deep ketosis -- they basically replace up to 75% of glucose so maybe 400 cal/day spread out over the day. Even in his ketoadapted superstarch scam studies, Volek reports lipid oxidation rates, not ketones.
Jane Karlsson said…
Certainly did. He thinks it's the pentose phosphate pathway that replenishes liver glycogen, we discussed it didn't we. The paper he cited didn't show anything of the kind.
Jane Karlsson said…
I've been reading Cassie's blog and found something very interesting.

'Snack times are a few of my favorite times of the day! I get excited about having healthy, balanced snacks between meals ... Snacks keep my metabolism revved up and my blood sugars stable, giving me brain power to focus and make it through the day without being hungry. ... I do keep a stash of [snack bars] in my desk drawer and gym bag for those times when I’m in a pinch, and need something balanced that will keep my blood sugars stable and hold me over until I get my hands on some real food.'

She needs constant snacks to keep her blood sugar stable??? I also noticed that her multivitamin/mineral supplements contain a measly 1mg of manganese. I would hazard a guess that her beta cells are not functioning well.
carbsane said…
You know, I was pointed to the Quackwatch thing on Dr. Lundell who retired and had his license revoked years later. What was interesting was his "they have it all wrong" book had an accompanying subscription website with three levels and fees. Kruse has changed his fees, but the original fees for Krusers and Klub and all that were VERY similar to Lundell's. It all seems a bit too coincidental. Like there's a business model out there for doctors at risk of being delicensed to follow for their post formal medical career. Planned or not, I think he intended to leave medicine and may well have early on in his career on the internet.
carbsane said…
I thought low carbers had stable blood sugars! It is very annoying reading what these folks advise vs. even their own results. A few weeks ago one woman wrote a post on how to eat to stabilize blood sugars and avoid that 3pm slump and then suggested her business partner's books for further reading and advice. Said business partner who is suffering from chronic fatigue and poor sleep. Ummmmmmm....
carbsane said…
We need to sign up some n=1 to try Mn supplementation Jane! (seriously ... if I had BG issues I'd give it a try)
Nigel Kinbrum said…
Yeah, ditto. I can go for hours typing away on the pooter without feeling hungry or thirsty. It's when I stop typing that I notice hunger & thirst.
carbsane said…
The Truth About Heart Disease Web site ...

Silver membership ($47/month) includes "a vast amount of information" every month."

Platinum membership: (77/month) adds access to monthly teleseminars in which Lundell answers questions and twice-monthly interviews with "cutting edge experts."

Gold membership: ($245/month) adds a one-hour or two half-hour private consultations with Lundell. 8-)
One doesn't even need turning to Quackwatch for this information, since Quackwatch itself is questionable. One can, however, follow the matter further to find actual, dispassionate information on his medical career and the red flags that have been raised against him during that career. I believe I shared the link with Nigel over on facebook back when he shared one of Colpo's links to Lundell.

I really don't agree with the idea--no matter how legit a point one is looking to make--that it helps to draft fringe nut jobs to support the contention in question.
gunther gatherer said…
Meanwhile, can someone find out for us how Barry Groves died??? Jimmy refuses to reveal the answer, though he's in contact with Groves' wife...
Thurston Moore said…
So what's the deal with Robb & the cruise? Seems to be something of a news blackout on it.
Scott Peterson said…
Glucose killed my family. I'll never forget that time. She up and went in their bodies and glycated all them proteins. Momma didn't stand a chance.

They put her on trial and boy was it a circus. But she got off easy, though. The jurors, well they didn't buy the prosecutors story. "The brain needs it" they said. "But there ain't no need for dietary carbohydrate. Your body is gonna make it's own as it needs it." That was the prosecutor's angle. If only they had G. Taubes as an expert witness. He woulda told that jury a thing or two.
carbsane said…
It is very strange, though JM goes internet silent for the cruise. I don't know how things work in the UK re: obituaries, but there hasn't been ANYTHING in the news about this. So this may be emblematic of the exaggerated celebrity of the internet, but one would think it would warrant a story somewhere on some small news outlet. Somehow I don't think the cause of death will ever be made public.
carbsane said…
Yeah, there are some questions about the guy behind QW, but I don't think that changes the record on Lundell he puts forth. I linked to an AZ news piece that laid things out if a fair amount of detail.

I really don't agree with the idea--no matter how legit a point one is looking to make--that it helps to draft fringe nut jobs to support a contention in question.

Too bad so many of the movers and shakers don't agree here, though I'm trying to figure out whether they can't see it or just don't want to see it.
carbsane said…
He was not on the cruise. His mom is apparently quite ill and was hospitalized a couple of weeks ago. This is a more than understandable circumstance, but for some reason there was no announcement of this. Diane Sanfilippo confirmed it on Twitter.
Jane Karlsson said…
So you pay $245 a month for 'information', teleseminars and an hour with the great man himself, whose licence has been revoked. It makes William Davis look legit, doesn't it. All Davis does is pretend heart disease has nothing to do with copper deficiency, and everybody does that.
Jane Karlsson said…
Well Mark Sisson has 10 mg in his supplements, and Carl Pfeiffer used to give his schizophrenic patients up to 100 mg/day. But the only thing I know for sure works is to eat wholemeal bread instead of meat.
Myron Schwarzennecker said…

Lack of effects of copper gluconate supplementation.


A double-blind study was done giving 10 mg of copper/day as copper gluconate or placebo capsules for 12 wk. The seven subjects receiving copper gluconate had no change in the level of copper in the serum, urine, or hair. There was also no change in the levels of zinc or magnesium. There was also no significant change in levels of hematocrit, triglyceride, SGOT, GGT, LDH, cholesterol, or alkaline phosphatase. The side effects of nausea, diarrhea, and heartburn were the same in the subjects receiving copper gluconate and subjects receiving placebo capsules.
Thanks, Jane.

That's interesting. I am not into wholemeal bread all that much, but my manganese count was at 16.6 mg on CRON-O-Meter. I do use bits of crud bran with all of my primary meals and that was responsible for about 8 mg of that manganese tally. I also had a high iron count (41.1 grams) -- oh those taters and spinach, However, to be clear, this was almost 95% non-haem iron along with quite a large bit of calcium. One could also really amp up that Mn count with tea.

So, just for the sake of the hypothetical scenario for those who aren't into grains and general carbohydrate in massive quantities. Would you consider low-carbohydrate (high on the meat) with manganese supplementation a decent alternative or would that not be good enough?
Probably a bit of both in that morass that we call cognitive bias. I mean, we can all probably confess to being tempted by such situations where some idiot's accidentally appealing to our personal views, but I can also damn well bet that many take pause and restrain themselves in such situations before endorsing given idiot and their crazy bus. Quoting Lundell to continually drone this paper tiger of a case against the conventional view of heart disease and cholesterol--which isn't all that much a 'con' as it is incomplete--is just doing one's own credibility a serious disservice.
Jane Karlsson said…
Hi Kade

Very interesting question, whether a high-meat low-carb diet would be OK with extra Mn. Would it be absorbed?

Here's an interesting observation. A Mn-deficiency disease of chickens called perosis can be prevented with a Mn-binding antibiotic, which helps Mn absorption. Many antibiotics bind metals, and it could be that this is at least in part how they work. Some drugs work by binding copper and taking it to where it's needed. The side effects arise because the drug is taking copper away from somewhere else. That's what John Sorenson says anyway. He's the other big shot on copper besides Klevay.
Jane Karlsson said…
Thanks Myron, very interesting indeed. I wonder if this could explain why copper supplementation doesn't help Alzheimer patients. They have many symptoms consistent with copper deficiency, but it didn't work.

The important protein in Alzheimer's, APP (amyloid precursor protein) is a copper protein. It was recently reported to function in iron export from neurons. This was a HUGE surprise. Lots of people think iron overload is the main cause of Alzheimer's.
To your question, I'd think yes Mn would absorb. However, I don't know much about the intricacies of the digestive system when it comes to absorption. I often assume--based on my own anecdotal experience--that freshly cooked meats digest really well and that allows supplements a smooth sailing through the system as opposed to a diet more rich in whole carbohydrates where fibre and phytic acid could inhibit the absorption of certain minerals.
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
Yes, it's now said that perhaps copper is protective in Alzheimer's, yet Dr Barnard has his evidences to recommend avoiding copper (along with the iron and aluminum) as in multis. Maybe there is a super narrow therapeutic index for Cu?

That study didn't address: where did the ingested copper go? Maybe the serum level of Cu prevents absorption or else promotes excretion. Maybe the form matters most?

Or is it that excess copper leads to reduced Zinc and that's what matters.

When surveying seniors for Alzheimer's, do they ask about Polident?

The whole thing makes me dizzy.
Jane Karlsson said…
Well I'm not sure it would be absorbed. Remember Mn is excreted in the bile even when it's needed, and conditions have to be right for its re-absorption. Gut bacteria which help mineral absorption need the colon to be acid, and they make it acid by digesting fibre. Meat makes it alkaline.

Phytic acid apparently doesn't inhibit absorption of Mn, at least not very much. If you're eating a lot of meat, phytic acid is just what you want, because it inhibits absorption of Fe and Zn much more than of Mn and Cu. It's even reported to improve Cu absorption.
Well, from what I've seen on PubMed--granted I haven't researched it thoroughly--Mn is inhibited by phytic acid, but probably not by a very large factor. Not to mention, some of the richest sources of Mn do seem to be sources of food also rich in phytic acid. On an intake mildly in excess of 2,500 calories, I already managed to get 16 mg, which is a lot of Mn.

So back to the question about meat and manganese. How about a low carbohydrate diet (not VLC), where one of the carbohydrate sources could be something rich in wheat bran alongside liver for the high levels of copper?
Jane Karlsson said…
I found this quote from Dr Barnard
"The amount of copper that you need is a little less than a milligram per day, the toxic amount is three milligrams per day. What I’m suggesting is that most people in North America are on a knife’s edge between getting enough and too much.”

You may be surprised to hear that the paper you linked says this
"Intravenous infusions of up to 80 mg of copper/day as copper complexes for the treatment of arthritis have been given to patients with no long-term side effects (3)."

So is the toxic dose 3 mg/day or more than 80 mg/day? I can see why the whole thing makes you dizzy.

BTW, the 1 mg/day intake Barnard says is all you need has been found to give volunteers symptoms of heart disease.
carbsane said…
I thought maybe it might be a Cu vs. Cu-complex molecular weight thing but that can't be it either. MW Cu-gluconate is ~454 g/mol, Cu is ~63.5 g/mol that's 14% ... so 80 mg Cu-gluconate contains about 11 mg Cu. Most LD-50's are in mg or whatever per kg bodyweight. Maybe that's it.
Jane Karlsson said…
Yes I wondered if it could be a misprint, so I found the original paper.
This is what it says.

'...In 1941, Fenz (6) used Cupralene to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Intravenous doses of 0.01-0.1 g gave modest results, but exceptional results were claimed with some patients given 0.2 g/injection 3 times per week with a limit of 2.5-6 g/series. Treatment was completed after 10-14 injections, corresponding to 0.54-1.24 g copper. Excellent results were achieved in 21~ of the cases, 41~ had received "important" benefits, compared with 31 ~ who had "improved moderately," and 7~ who had experienced no effect (6, 7). ....In addition, Forestier and Certonciny (12) found that increasing the dose to between 0.25 and 0.5 g (47.5-95 mg of Cu) per intravenous injection and increasing the duration of therapy as well as total dose per series to between 2 and 5g (380-950 mg of Cu) increased
the percent of patients receiving effective therapy. ...'
carbsane said…
Hmmm ... so Charles Grashow is a moderator on a steroid forum. Might explain a few things.
Jane Karlsson said…
Very good suggestion. I don't much like the idea of getting Mn from bran, I have to say. Bran is only part of the grain, and I think it really has to be the whole thing. Eat your meat with beans or brown rice, or cracked wheat, buckwheat etc etc. And don't go to McDonald's until they start serving wholemeal buns.
I already get plenty of other whole sources of beans and tubers -- the bran's merely added in so it hasn't been an issue. Buckwheat, much like bran, works out as well for the nutrients that Evelyn's mentioned.
carbsane said…
You could always try kishka (blood sausage made with kasha) ... not my cuppa tea :D
Lol. Yeah. Probably not at the moment since I am presently engaged in consuming largely vegetarian-starchy food. I mean, that excess of 2,500 calories comprised of over 500 grams of carbohydrate (o teh low fat diabetes!).
Jane Karlsson said…
Yes I see. Well I think you are doing a very valuable experiment. But if it's to have validity you must stop the bran. If anything goes wrong people can say oh it was the bran. You poisoned yourself with manganese.
Hahaha! Yeah. I don't have that much bran anyway and on some days, I don't have any at all. Besides, it's not an experiment. I just go through phases--for economic and personal reasons--where I stick to a proper high carbohydrate and low fat diet. I've been fine for months. In fact, I was fine years ago doing the same. Only problem was the bulky aspect of the diet, which was more of a superficial issue on my end.
Jane Karlsson said…
Are you sure you're getting enough fat-soluble vitamins on a low fat diet? This is why you shouldn't eat bran (yes I know it's only a little) - the vitamin E in the germ is needed for the manganese to work properly.
Yes, I am very sure to your first question. I am not eating lab-chow, for one thing. Didn't I state that I am not an experiment or doing an experiment?

I have no reason not to consume bran since there's this thing called the rest of my diet that is already over-nutritious. . . Eh, I should probably post one of those cron images or something. There's enough minerals and vitamins going into my system on a daily basis that could probably nourish a small Congolese village.

Lastly, there is no such thing as a fat free diet until and unless one's living on lab chow. Why in these circles, one assumes that low-fat equates to a malnourished fat-sterile digestive environment is beyond reason. Sorry, I am not all that much annoyed at your comment as I am at the repeating nature of said comment in much of the paleo sphere in order to present low fat diets as some kind of death sentence. It didn't kill the Okinawans and it didn't kill the Kitavans.
Paleo Huntress said…
There's no way to say this without being snarky, but do you think you'd have anything left to blog about if you removed all of the personal attacks, drama and appeals to authority from your subject matter?
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
Jane, do you know of any solid resource on how to go about maximizing absorption of various minerals? I've seen the 'wheel', but that doesn't seem to help much.
Jane Karlsson said…
Sorry. My problem is this: there are people out there who want me to be wrong, and they take manganese for instance and shout all over the internet that it poisoned them and it's my fault. You have associated yourself with these people and I was afraid you might be trying the same thing.
Sure. Now I was absolutely not aware that I am associated with anyone. I certainly go to a few blogs that I like to read, but surely you can understand that such visitations don't imply that I am in full agreement with the entirety of the content.

Besides, if something were to go wrong on my end, which is highly unlikely, there'll be plenty of easier fodder (fructose, glucose etc.,) to take blame than a mere micronutrient.
Jane Karlsson said…
Yes. In fact It isn't just 'those people' who are into bashing manganese. Practically the whole of the Mn literature says it's toxic when it's actually one of the least toxic metals.

I've been trying for 30 years to find out who's behind this, and failed. Apparently nobody is behind it. But that doesn't mean it isn't very serious. For instance, Mn deficiency might be an important cause of the AIDS epidemic. Mn blocks HIV replication and Fe promotes it.

In the third world pregnant women are given Fe supplements (the WHO says it should be 60 mg/day) which can cause Mn deficiency. Most of these people anyway eat refined carbs which have had most or all of their Mn removed. Bill Gates is involved in a project to add Fe to white flour and other food all over the world. Now tell me Bill Gates is a good guy, I really want to believe it.
Well, even good-intentioned people can be misled. Nutrition isn't--exactly--his area of advanced speciality. Even the well-informed people can become confused by the level of research that goes for and against anything, including iron.
Jane Karlsson said…
Yes, it's a cock-up not a conspiracy. It might possibly be a cocked-up conspiracy. Bill Gates did talk to various bigwigs at Rockefeller University a few years ago about overpopulation.
Jane Karlsson said…
You could try the Linus Pauling Institute. They're pretty good in my experience. What's the 'wheel'?
Cock-up for the most part, I'd say. One can research all day, but if they're not convicted or have personal anecdotes to fuel their biases, there's evidence for all sides of the mineral spectrum--or any subject--to confuse the daylights out of individuals with exceptional intelligence. Heh. As for curbing population hysteria? Lol. Even China's come to realise the futility of such thinking. There's nothing going on here.
carbsane said…
Please do let me know when you have a blog up so I can mindlessly critique your content as you do mine.
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
There is a figure constructed as a circle, purportedly showing how each mineral interacts with the others, whether aiding or inhibiting absorption. Like here:
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
Let's see if I can paste this.
Paleo Huntress said…
Awww, now I give you that it was a harsh critique, but it definitely wasn't mindless. I have a blog, and moderate two forums on paleo/primal eating- though since they're in alternative communities, I don't wish to link the IDs so since I'm unwilling to "prove" it, feel free to call me a liar.

I just don't get it. You seem intelligent and well read and pretty educated on the subject matter you write about. I've only been visiting your blog for a few weeks but my overall impression is one of constant whining- you've been mistreated, this person's a bully, that one hurt your feelings, etc. Of course, it IS your blog and you can whine if you like... but is that really what you're going for?

The ad hominem attacks make your blog feel juvenile. If what you have to share has merit, the personal attacks aren't necessary, and only serve to give the impression that you believe your argument too weak to stand on its own. And let's face it, having alphabet soup after your name no more guarantees expertise than not having it negates it.
Jane Karlsson said…
If you make animals deficient for manganese, they don't breed. It's conceivable that the idea behind iron supplementation in the third world was 'Fe pills cause Mn deficiency. We can cure their anemia AND stop them breeding!'

In the Chinese province of Jiangsu, anemia is very common but is associated not with a low Fe intake but a low magnesium intake. Around the world 4 billion people are supposed to have 'iron-deficiency anemia', which can mean either a low Fe intake or low Fe availability. If Fe gets stuck in your liver due to copper deficiency, it can't get to your bone marrow to make hemoglobin.

Bill Gates can't be expected to know any of that, as you say. This is what I mean by a 'cocked-up conspiracy'.
Yeah, my point with regards to population control was that this 'solution' is actually short-sighted and most well-informed people know that it will backfire and put the future of productivity and real growth in peril against the backdrop of an ageing population. Conspiracies have to work and serve an intelligent long-term agenda; cock-ups kind of defeat the whole point. All the Illuminatis and NWOs--bastions of shadow power that we conjure up out of boredom--are hardly going to be so short-sightedly stupid, yet in such profound control of everything.This isn't what they'd need to secure future control of the game board, hence the China reference because even their Draconian policies have fallen in line with the underlying common sense. Whatever it is that this website is inferring these elites trying to do with regards to population control, it's highly unlikely, and definitely not going to work.

Now on to the real interesting point. Yes, Fe availability in itself can be a puzzling matter and a lack of it doesn't necessarily mean that there isn't iron stored away in the wrong places creating other problems.
Jane Karlsson said…
Thanks, I remember now. I think it's correct but perhaps not much of a help, as you said. All you really need to know is that some important metals work in pairs so that an excess of one means deficiency of the other. Sodium-potassium and calcium-magnesium are well known, but zinc-copper and iron-manganese are not. Well zinc-copper is quite well known but lots of people think they have Zn deficiency and Cu overload when they have the opposite, because of what happens in the blood during inflammation.
carbsane said…
Did you try saving it and uploading or just copy and paste?
carbsane said…
Thanks so much for your analysis! Nothing new under the sun. I won't call you a liar b/c I don't know what you say to be false. I will call you a coward for not linking up and file your criticism in the appropriate folder.
Jane Karlsson said…
I wouldn't altogether discount the idea that the Illuminati (who do exist, I know a member) are indeed in control but have no idea what they're doing. The indications are that they were behind Tony Blair's support for biotechnology and genetics, which were supposed to 'cure half our diseases and prevent the other half' and make the UK rich from selling its wonderful cures abroad. Didn't happen, did it. The UK is bankrupt and sicker than ever.

These people think disease is caused by genes, and Francis Crick thought people should be genetically engineered to improve them. He worked down the corridor from me when I was a PhD student, and I did not like him. My supervisor told me he used to donate to a sperm bank to 'pass on his intelligence genes'.
Paleo Huntress said…
OK, I'm a coward. =)

But you're still a spiteful, whining, childish blogger misrepresenting and distorting science and distracting readers from that very real fact with your "woe is me, I'm a victim of the big, bad low carbers" to fit your wish-fulfillment that extra carbohydrate won't make you any fatter.

File away.
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
I remember the liability lawsuits from not long ago concerning zinc-containing denture creams, alleging that failure to warn about overuse resulted in copper deficiency, thereby creating serious neuropathies. GSK settled for over 100 million dollars in a slew of cases. But then another bunch of multidistrict Federal cases were consolidated in Florida. In the bellwether case there against P&G, the judge excluded the plaintiff's expert evidence as insufficient and P&G won on that one. I believe that the whole thing might subsequently have died out.

So, even there we find lack of a conclusive finding.
Myron Schwarzennecker said…
Yes, uploaded. Maybe it will work next time.
carbsane said…
Let it all out! Feel better? Now do me a favor. Please list a specific example of where I've distorted the science. Specific. Then provide me with references to full-texts of primary peer review literature to back it up.
Paleo Huntress said…
You distorted it in another thread just yesterday where you cited a study you claimed proved that high carb diets (and insulin) were anti-inflammatory. You merely forgot to mention that the study was over 30 years old and that the carbs were consumed in the form of a "leguminous fiber".

We don't need peer-review to see that.

Jane Karlsson said…
I've been trying to work out what you meant by 'that's your choice, Jane' and failed. Explanation needed. Then we can go back to discussing iron availability, which I agree is very interesting. There are indications that obesity might be caused at least in part by iron getting trapped in adipocytes, which would explain why many obese people are anemic.
Jane Karlsson said…
Very interesting. I once wrote to the CEO of GSK asking why their tuberculosis drug didn't contain copper, which is supposed to make TB drugs work better. Cu is needed for lung repair, and according to Sorenson it's low in diseased lungs.

You remember Merck's arthritis drug Vioxx was withdrawn because it caused heart problems. Both arthritis and heart disease are linked to Cu deficiency. Why don't they add Cu to their drugs? They'd save themselves a lot of money. I suppose it's too late, they'd just invite more lawsuits if they did it now.
When I said it's your choice, Jane, I was talking about your inclination to believing--even in part--some of these political conspiracies.
Jane Karlsson said…
Oh I see. What political conspiracies?
carbsane said…
The reason for this is simple -- the drug company would have to have done all of its testing with Cu and/or repeat a substantial amount of the testing. That's not going to happen. The issues with every drug that turns sour almost never come up in clinical trials, they come up after a couple of years of the drug being in widespread use in the general public (with off-label usage and/or in conjunction with other drugs).

I am not sure what the "procedure" would be for a drug company to recommend a supplement with their drug. I would think there's a regulation somewhere that puts them on the hook for doing so.
I get the feeling that these are rhetorical questions. . . I hope not, however. I'll quote your post so we're clear.

"I wouldn't altogether discount the idea that the Illuminati (who do exist, I know a member) are indeed in control but have no idea what they're doing. The indications are that they were behind Tony Blair's support for biotechnology and genetics, which were supposed to 'cure half our diseases and prevent the other half' and make the UK rich from selling its wonderful cures abroad. Didn't happen, did it. The UK is bankrupt and sicker than ever."

You wouldn't altogether discount the above and that's your choice, you're probably convinced of this on a personal level. That's your choice to discount or not--I've clearly outlined my argument above and why I do discount most of their supposed power as hype because I am as unyielding towards such ideas as I am towards religion and superstition.

"I am just stating--in quite a matter-of-factly sense until I'm shown contrary evidence--that it's all an overblown angle. If a party has been in control with a legacy that spans many centuries, then it isn't doing so through witless demeanour*. The logic breaks at that point, which only leaves two possible explanations: 1) They were never in absolute control--far from it, actually--meaning that all the fuss about them is futile and that none of this will pan out, as it has been shown numerous times (see Eugenics). 2) They never even existed in any meaningful capacity to begin with, which leads back to the closing of explanation 1. Yes, a distinction with little difference."

The work is well ahead for those making claims that these bumbling buffoons--whose conspiracies are actually self-detrimental to their long term control--are actually in absolute control of anything, let alone the entire world. . . or that they have somehow managed to remain in control of the world for a good few centuries.
Jane Karlsson said…
Yes I'm sure that's right. Is it your impression Big Pharma is in a lot more trouble that it's letting on? They have almost nothing in the pipeline, their blockbusters are coming off patent, and they're drowning in lawsuits. They thought biotech would save them, but biotech treatments are extremely expensive and are turning out to be no better than the old drugs.
Absolutely not. If there's any accusation at play, then it's most certainly not from my end.
Jane Karlsson said…
OK, I accept that. Let's be friends again, I really like talking to you.
carbsane said…
I agree. What will save them is no-fault stuff like vaccinations. Look for the government to require more drugs and indemnify the pharmaceutical companies like they've done with vaccines and certain birth control.
Jane Karlsson said…
What can I say. I LOVE the trolls.
Paleo Huntress said…
Considering how you frequent this particular blog, your love of trolls is most definitely evidentiated. I've never encountered an entire body of work more trollish than this one.


1.) an internet user who sends inflammatory or provocative messages designed to elicit negative responses or start a flame-war."

This is Evelyn in a nutshell. So yeah, you clearly do LOVE the trolls.
Paleo Huntress said…
It seems as if you're taking the mechanisms of ketogenic diets out of context... and one has to wonder why. What is the point of getting overly pedantic about things that don't occur in real-world circumstances? In ketogenic diets, the term "ketosis" generally refers to the ability of the tissues to use ketone bodies efficiently, rather than its ability to produce them. This is why keto-strips become useless in long-term low-carbers, because once the tissues have adapted, there is no 'overflow' to be measured by the strips. Also, the body excretes ketones in breath (especially), sweat and urine-- so the idea that ketones "back up" is pretty silly. It's uncommon for there to be excess ketone bodies circulating in the blood.
Jane Karlsson said…
Evelyn does not misrepresent or distort science. I am a biologist myself with a first-class degree from Oxford and a PhD from Cambridge, and I examine her work very carefully. She is not spiteful or whining or childish but remarkably restrained.
Jane Karlsson said…
Are you laughing at the idea that Evelyn does not misrepresent science, or the idea that I have Oxbridge degrees?
Paleo Huntress said…
All of it.

First, I find appeals to authority complete and utter horse-hockey. The world is FULL of well-educated idiots (not that you are, I don't know you)- but your alphabet soup means nothing to me.

Second, in a written forum, the only thing that matters is whether or not a person can back up their claims. I get tired of reading that evidence is dismissed because the person offering it hasn't passed muster as an "expert". The presenter's credentials have no bearing on the value of the evidence presented.

And third, this blog is splitting its seams (much like Evelyn's size 8s on her 5'3", 200lb frame) with misrepresented data, that which literally depends on the reader not being able to access the full study for the details.

One person with just a little knowledge can do so much harm, whereas a genuine person, interested in the truth can do so much good. Even Evelyn's STUDENTS have no respect for her. They find her infantile and giggly. She's irresponsible and unreliable. Those kinds of traits are deeply engrained in us. The likelihood that it stops at her teaching is close to nil.

So yes, I'm laughing at it all.
Jane Karlsson said…
I think the problem must be that you don't understand what Evelyn says. Biology is very complicated.
carbsane said…
Jane, sadly I have to ban yet a third troll. I had suspected this was a plant from the stalker blog but played along for a bit mostly because another commenter had added constructive input on the 3 year old CRP post PH had commented on.

I am accused of distorting science when I link to a study where the diet was described as high in "complex carbs and leguminous fiber" and PH tries to say that could be 300 g carb of which 200 is fiber which is absurd on its face.

Huntress I will not allow you to trash me here, and you can believe what you want to believe but you have no idea what you are talking about. The internet has a long memory, and if the coordinated campaign to target me IRL succeeds in interfering with my professional life, you'll be added to the list.
Dan Lundeen said…
PH is now paleotrolling Greger's site like it is a full time job btw.
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