Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain*

As I was thumbing through the weekend edition of the Financial Times (my favorite newspaper) on a lazy Sunday morning, my eye fell on a little boxed off squib titled Dr Mehmet Oz on the January Detox (scroll to bottom to see the piece).  If I ran across something like this in a local daily newspaper, I wouldn’t think much about it, but in the venerable Financial Times?  Since we all know how much good the wonderful Dr. Oz has done Oprah (as evidenced by the photo to the left – were I she, I certainly wouldn’t be toasting him), I decided to read it to see what he had to recommend on detoxing.  I wasn’t disappointed.  He lives up to his billing.

How does Dr. Oz recommend we detoxify our livers?  Let’s read and see.

I like a simple cleansing fast as an easy, inexpensive means of flushing out toxins and rebooting the system (a juice detox, say, which involves a short-term diet of raw vegetables, fruit juices and water). But it is important to remember that detoxifying the liver, the organ responsible for detoxing our bodies, would take a month of healthy living.


Let me see if I get this straight.  You detoxify your liver by a fruit-juice fast, right?  Which means throwing back at least three or four glasses of fruit juice a day.  Okay, got it.

Sounds great.  But bit of critical thinking.

What happens to the liver to cause it to need detoxifying?  How about fat accumulation?  A fatty liver is one that needs detoxifying.  Fatty livers are way more common than you might expect.  Studies have shown that about a third of Americans are walking around with fatty livers, a disorder called non-alcoholic fatty liver disorder (NAFLD).  No one really knows what the long-term effects of this problem are going to be, but it is known that fatty accumulation in the liver can lead to an inflamed liver, which can then go on to develop cirrhosis and possibly even liver cancer.  Since this epidemic of NAFLD has arisen fairly recently, it’s unknown how it will play out over the long haul, but I doubt that it will be a good result.

So where does all this fat in the liver come from?  Most researchers think it comes from excess fructose consumption.  The pathways of the metabolism of fructose lead to fatty accumulation in the liver, and giving laboratory animals a lot of fructose gives them fatty livers.  If you couple this information with the fact that fructose consumption has skyrocketed over the last three decades, it makes sense that at least part of the NAFLD we’re seeing comes from too much fructose.

With these facts in mind, let’s take a closer look at Dr. Oz’s recommendation to undertake a juice fast to cleanse or detox the liver.

If you go on a juice fast, how much juice do you drink.  Three or four glasses a day, I would imagine.  And I would also guess that these would be decent sized glasses.  Most people don’t drink an eight ounce glass of anything.  Eight ounces is only a cup, which really isn’t all that much.  Even those little weenie juice boxes that parents put in their kid’s lunches are 8.45 ounces, and most glasses of juice that people drink are larger than that.  A regular-sized soft drink can contains 12 ounces, which is probably much closer to the size of a glass of juice most of us would drink, especially if we were on a juice fast.  Four glasses of juice – a not unreasonable amount to drink in a day if that’s all you’re drinking – would end up being 48 ounces of juice.

I went through the USDA database of foods looking for all the juices I could find that had fructose broken out from the total carbohydrate figure and tabulated them.  Take a look at the chart below which is total carbs and fructose in grams.  And remember that 100 grams equals a half a cup.  So when you see something listed at 111.6 grams of fructose, that means more than a half cup.

It should be clear from this chart that a fruit juice fast provides a whole lot of fructose and a whole lot of carbs.  The fructose is particularly problematic in that it encourages fat accumulation in the liver.  The amounts in 48 ounces of any of these fruit juices would be more than enough to stimulate the synthesis and storage of fat in the liver.

How Dr. Oz thinks this would detox the liver is beyond me.

One other note on his cleansing fast.  It’s not just fruit juices; it includes raw vegetables, too.  I assume Dr. Oz recommends the raw vegetables for all of the flavonoids, carotenoids, lycopenes and other phytonutrients.  I guess he never learned that most – if not all – of these nutrients are fat soluble.  Consuming raw vegetables and fruit juices without some fat along with them means you don’t absorb any of the nutrients.  Dr. Oz must have missed that day at medical school.

So, the actual result of his cleansing detox that is supposed to “flush out toxins [while] rebooting the system” is that more fat accumulates in the liver, insulin goes up thanks to all the carbs and you don’t even absorb the phytonutrients.  Sounds like just a hell of a deal to me.

Let’s spend just another moment looking at yet a different piece of idiocy in this small, small piece of writing.

Says Dr. Oz:

Caffeine throws off all the systems, so drink green tea, which has only a quarter of the caffeine of dark tea or coffee but packs a powerful energy punch.

Oh dear.  Where do we start?  Green tea has almost as much caffeine as coffee, not a quarter of the caffeine.  And, please tell me Dr. Oz, where do we get the “powerful energy punch” from green tea if it’s not from the caffeine?
No sooner had I finished reading the Financial Times Oz recommendations, which, by the way, struck me much more as a prescription from a witch doctor than from a trained physician, than MD pointed out that the same Dr. Oz was on the cover of the Sunday magazine that comes with our local paper.  Yep, USA Weekend features our friend expanding on his recommendations.

I’m not going to go through them all (you can read them here), but one did catch my attention:

Ditch extreme diets. People almost always fail to lose weight because they try diets that are too radical to stick with. For a lifestyle change to succeed, it must be sustainable. So instead of eliminating all foods that fit into a certain category or counting every calorie, try making changes that are less noticeable but no less significant. If you can eliminate just 100 calories from your daily intake, for example, you will lose about a pound per month. How hard is that?

This is a blatant attack on the low-carb diet without saying it in so many words.  And the notion that “if you can eliminate just 100 calories from you daily intake’” you will lose weight over time is the ultimate recommendation of someone who is clueless about the operation of the energy balance equation.


I’m going to leave you with a poem that I believe is prophetic for Dr. Oz and his nutritionally-unsophisticated compadres.  Sooner or later science will out and these folks will be shown for the idiots they are, and they will be left as part of the detritus of the desert of faulty nutritional thinking.  Too bad they will leave a lot of corpses in their wake.

The poem by Shelley is titled, appropriately enough, Ozymandias


by Percy Bysshe Shelley

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

*Said by Great and Powerful Oz
in The Wizard of Oz

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115 thoughts on “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain*

  1. I just got done watching a youtube clip of Joy Behar, who was guest hosting Larry King Live, interview Gary Taubes. Dr. Oz was there to muddy the water, and human/dragon Jillian Michaels even checked in to try and engulf the place in flames. Taubes got a few good points in, and never caved in to Dr. Oz, but eventually spent a lot of the time laughing at the circus that quickly developed around him. He is a brave man.

    Thanks for exposing this clown even further.

  2. Doesn’t green tea contain a different methylxanthine that is not caffeine, something like theophylline or theobromine? Some people also claim that the theanine in green tea has a calming effect that counteracts its stimulant effects. Personally, any stimulant is too much for me, even tea.

  3. Excellent, Dr. Eades!

    Fructose detox via (good) hyperlipidity has worked well for me.

    My favorite part: “Consuming raw vegetables and fruit juices without some fat along with them means you don’t absorb any of the nutrients. Dr. Oz must have missed that day at medical school.”



  4. You know doc
    Its always nice to meet a physician/scientist with a little bit of classical education/class, at least enough to know who Shelley was. Most people tend to be one trick ponies these days, they have a 4.0 from ivy league U but don’t know their romantic poets from a hole in the ground.

  5. I feel bad for Dr. Oz. When he was on Larry King Live with Gary Taubes, he said that he has to keep nuts in his pocket: “I have nuts because I get hungry all the time. I eat every couple hours.” It doesn’t seem to occur to him that frequent hunger may be a sign that “you’re doing it wrong!” Poor guy.

  6. If you want to see a total condemnation of fructose, with all the biochemical bells and whistles, check out Robert Lustig’s Sugar–The Bitter Truth on youtube (and elsehwere). Sugar is a toxin. So, unless you’re into “the hair of the dog that bit you” kind of homeopathy, why would you intoxicate your level to detox?

    (I don’t buy everything Lustig says. But I don’t buy everything anyone says. But his focus is on fructose and it’s quite damning.)

  7. Dr. Eades, you crack me up. I knew when I saw the picture of Dr. Oz that you would be licking your chops to reveal the latest Oz quackery. On another note, I am glad to read your perspective on juice fasts- before I started low-carbing I used to think I simply lacked the willpower to ever actually make it on a juice fast but now I know I was lucky to have escaped them! This year I am going to try a liver cleanse a la the 6 Week Cure and I am excited to get started!

  8. Yeah, moises, the link is:

    for the 90 minute lecture on the fructose pathways in the human body and the dire consequences thereof. He is a pediatric endocrinologist who is seeing juvenile obesity grow at an alarming rate. There is now a substantial number of obese SIX MONTH OLD infants!! At one point he does go on about adding an enormous amount of fiber to the American diet, but mostly his information seems accurate.

    The thing about Oz is that once being made famous on Oprah, he has gone overboard with his clichéd information. I have read that he has about 100 researchers, assistants, producers etc. Well, if they are all getting their information at the same trough, we can’t expect them to know any better, and for Oz to be accurate.

    As to a liver cleanse, the Drs Eades have outlined a cleanse that uses saturated fat in their new book and they did mention adding Milk Thistle, aka silymarin. Having just finished “Over the Counter Natural Cures” by Shane Ellison MS., I use his dosages for MT along with whatever fat is part of my meal.

    Ellison is another person who has joined the fight against the use of fructose and other additives. He is an organic chemist who had been working on tamoxifen knockoffs and quit when he realized that his employer(Big Pharma), was not really interested in cures but in profit. His websites are full of a bit of hype, but the info in his book was well presented. He paid for analyses on all ten of the supplements he recommends in his book and the certificates of analysis can be found at

  9. Just an additional thought… I’ve watch his segments over the years, and Oz seems to have absolutely no idea what glucose and fructose do to the human body… he really needs to watch Lustig’s lecture!

  10. Since we’re into poetry, how about:

    ‘Myself when young did eagerly frequent
    Doctor and Saint, and heard great Argument
    About it and about: but evermore
    Came out by the same Door as in I went.’

    ( The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam )

  11. Hey Dr. Mike. Good, name names and call ’em what they are. That’s what I always say.

    I think I’ll take on his 16 healthy tips in a post later. at a glance, six are bogus and he has the wrong focus and reasoning on some of the ones he gets right.

  12. I wrote something along these lines when a friend of mine attempted a post-Christmas juice fast (being a sensible woman, she only lasted about a day). One other thing I speculated about in my post, though, that I wouldn’t mind having your thoughts on: I am suspicious that a sugary partial fast like a juice fast would pose more of a risk of skeletal muscle loss because insulin levels would be kept higher than they would be in a true fast or ketogenic partial fast. It seems like the sort of thing that never should be tested, though, ethically speaking.

  13. I admit that I don’t get why having some fat with fat soluble-vitamins is so important… if they all go into your stomach. Isn’t the stomach breaking everything down and apart? Isn’t the bile the solvent, and not a little bit of cheese or butter that you eat? If fat is needed to absorb fat-soluble vitamins, would drinking too much water with your fat hinder absorption of the vitamins by, changing the balance of stomach contents to hydrophilic vs hydrophobic? I mean, I can get why you can extract the vitamins in a test tube with oil and not water.

  14. I find Dr. Oz hard to take too. I watch his show sometimes to see what advice he is espousing to the masses, kind of like watching a train wreck. He’s supposed to tell us tonight what foods to omit from our diets. I can’t wait to see what he comes up with (I’m guessing refined snack foods, white bread and fried foods, but who knows?).

    I won’t defend him, but my impression is that he means well, and thinks that if he recommends anything too weird, people won’t implement the changes (or maybe he’s afraid they won’t worship him as much). A lot of his advice turns out to be lower carb, but he never says that explicitly- though I have heard him tell people to eat less carbohydrates. Unfortunately, a lot of his success with weight loss is due to the fact that people are extremely motivated since they know they will be on the show for a follow up, and they want to look good, and has little to do with his diet plan.

    As for his juice fasts, if you are drinking say 200 g carbs a day as your sole calorie intake, you’re still running a significant calorie deficit, requiring fat mobilization and loss. I suspect that even though the fructose is adding to the triglyceride load in the liver, the liver will be spitting it out faster than it is making it, though of course triglycerides in the blood will stay high too. Most of the people using his juice fast probably get more than 100 g fructose a day in their normal diets anyway, so the net result is a positive. I think it would be horrible though- I’d be starving all day.

    There must be some absorption (just suboptimal) of fat soluble substances in the absence of dietary fat via the bile salts in the intestines, no?

    That said, everyone would be far better off if they just followed your advice!

  15. @ Kim:

    A fast is water and maybe unsweetened coffee and/or tea. “Juice fast” is a contradiction in terms. Google autophagy. That’s cellular cleansing and you only get there by dumping the calories completely episodically, intermittently.

    My blog has many posts about my self-experimentation in fasting, including working out at the tail end of 24-36 hour fasts, including blood glucose monitoring. Hint: fasting BG can be in the 80s and after eating nothing and working out, 100-110. It’s called gluconeogenesis.

  16. Doc, how I have always loved that poem of Shelley’s, and how appropriate here. I still wait for the nutritional conventional wisdom to be exposed. I do my best, having loaned the Taubes masterpiece to my medical neighbour. But my wife still thinks I’m killing myself with my diet. Sigh.
    Meanwhile, perhaps you will enjoy this rather silly version of the Hallelujah Chorus. It was posted on Joyce DiDonnato’s blog and if you haven’t yet got her new recording of Handel’s Alcina (, obtain it right away, it’s amazing. If you download it, do it FLAC if you can manage the tech stuff — it’s so much better than mp3.
    Anyway, here’s the Halleujah Chorus as performed by monks under a vow of silence. The first minute or so can be skipped as it labours the point.

  17. Coincidentally, my grandmother INSISTED that I sit down and watch Dr. Oz on TV today. She has been watching him religiously since he came on air, loves his stuff. I agreed with some of what he said on his show, but I agree with the idiocy of reccomending a fruit cleanse for a fatty liver, or a “detox” in general. If only people could accept the low-carb lifestyle…

  18. @Jacob

    Good catch. I assumed that the USDA had already included that in the fructose amount, but when I went back and checked, they hadn’t. Sucrose is listed separately and when the sucrose figures are added to the fructose and glucose amounts, they total to the amount for total sugars. In the case of apple juice, there are 18.75 grams of sucrose along with the 85.3 in the 48 ounces, so the total fructose would be about 95 grams. So the juice fast is even worse fructose-wise than I presented in the post.


    You might experience a little muscle loss on a short-term juice fast but not a lot. Muscle, like most protein structures, breaks down and needs to be rebuilt, which requires protein. There is no protein to speak of in the juice to replace that lost from muscle breakdown, but it isn’t really problematic over the short term for a couple of reasons. First, the body does a pretty good job of recycling protein as long as the protein isn’t converted to glucose to meet the body’s glucose needs. Second, the sugar in the juice is actually protein sparing in that it us used to meet the body’s glucose needs so the body doesn’t have to go after muscle, which is the glucose reservoir of the body.

    @Michael Richards

    Thanks for the DiDonnato recommendation. I’ll track it down.

    • Dr. Eades, love your books, ive lost thirty pounds and have kept it off, thanks to you and youre wife. It seems to me that in addition to the low carb diet, getting more omega 3 fats into the diet is huge! as you mention in youre book, a ratio closer to 2:1 or 3:1 with omega 6 fats is a large key to good health Also, loved the chapter on magnesium and how important the ratio of calcium to magnesium is. I think this approach is the key in preventative medicine.

      I wonder how can you reach more people with this incredible info. Maybe you should go on the OPRAH show. Seriously

      Thanks again,
      Mike M

  19. @Richard: Um, I’m not sure why you felt the need to school me on juice fasts when they are in fact the topic of Dr. Eades’ post, with a nice definition of the term up there at the top and everything. Also, I know you’re comfortable coming off as a dick, but is it really appropriate for you to assume that readers of Dr. Eades’ blog need you to explain well-known and layman-friendly metabolic concepts like gluconeogenesis?

    Your personal fasting experiments don’t really have anything to add to my hypothesis. With just a blood glucose monitor you just can’t collect the necessary data.

  20. Oz is an idiot.

    I saw him on TV a few months ago on some late night show and he had the deportment of a manic chimpanzee. I don’t remember specifically what government approved food pyramid advice he was spewing.

    The idea of a cardiac surgeon as some natural authority on diet is even more absurd than cardiologists in that role. And what kind of ass wears scrubs outside the OR or interventional suite? – I look at him and all I can think is BIOHAZARD.

    I know she spends more time in Hawaii, but why doesn’t Oprah look you up in Montecito when she’s there sometime? It seems insane to think she’s never heard of low carb dieting and I would imagine she must be tired of yoyo-ing like that by now. It’s like she lives in an informational vacuum.

    I used to get the FT too, but it got too depressing during the collapse, so I cancelled it. I miss “how to spend it” : )

  21. @ Kurt G. Harris, M.D.

    Oprah lives on the same street I live on in Montecito about a quarter of a mile away. She’s lived there for six or seven years, but I’ve yet to see her anywhere around town. I’ve seen her boyfriend Stedman a zillion times, though. He and I have stood side by side on the driving range at least a half dozen times and he’s played in foursomes front of me and behind me. But no Oprah. Plus, I doubt she even knows I exist.

    You should reup your FT subscription now that the economy is sort of improving.

    Anyone reading this comment should take a look at Dr. Harris’s blog. It’s excellent.


    Thanks for the kind words.

    Dr A’s low-carb blog is another that shouldn’t be missed.

  22. Was this is the same doctor Oz that had recommended so strongly on Oprah that everyone should use agave… a sweetener as high or higher in fructose than high fructose corn syrup?…

    People have asked me In the media many times what I thought of “juicing”. My reply has been the same for decades, “juicing is great”, I say. “Then throw out the juice and eat the pulp.”

    We should also discuss sometime the lesser known but perhaps even more significant effect of fructose on leptin and subsequently the effect of hyperleptinemia and leptin resistance on visceral obesity including fatty liver… And then the effect of fructose on fructosylation, analogous to glycation but with even greater propensity of disfiguring proteins.

    Thanks Mike… You have been my best student..

    Ron Rosedale M.D.

  23. @Ron Rosedale M.D.

    Ah, Dr. Rosedale. A blast from the past. Good to hear from you. Didn’t know you were a faithful reader.

    It is indeed the same Oz who recommends agave, a sweetener that is over 90 percent fructose, but one that the non-thinkers will readily tell you won’t raise your blood sugar. I wonder why? Maybe because it’s all converted to fat.

    Remember on our driving trip to Denver when you insisted we stop at the Denver Public Library so you could copy the briefcase full of scientific papers I brought along? That and all the other times you ferreted through my mountain of papers…there is the fount of your knowledge, my friend. 🙂

    Are you still in Denver. I miss all our scientific discussions. Give me a call or drop me a note sometime, and let’s get together.


    • Dr. Eades,
      I have great respect for you and Dr. Rosedale, but your response to his post above has appalled me. That you clearly refuse to give any credibility to him of your own knowledge, and tainted with the arrogance that Dr. Rosedale has learned all that he knows through you. I dont doubt that you both shared and copied any clinical studies out there, I know that Dr. Rosedale obsessively keeps up with any documentation out there, though often does not agree with it. I remember quite some time ago that it was you that was promoting a high protein diet, and it was through Dr. Rosedale and that very public debate that you clearly learned that was not the way to go. I don’t doubt that you both learned from each other, but it is very sad to see you try to insinuate that you taught him all he knows. He is clearly heads and shoulders above you and constantly years before anyone else cutting the path of the truth, and then others following. It was not only high protein where you were wrong. It is ok to admit when one taught us something, in fact is shows great integrity that any professional shares and learns from others.
      Please, have a little respect for those that you have learned from.

      Jan Brink.

      • Dr Rosedale and I are good friends who constantly kid one another. The reply I sent was my needling him. It was all in fun. Don’t get your panties in a wad over joshing between good friends.

  24. Dr. Oz cracks me up. On the Larry King interview with Gary Taubes, I remember the topic eventually getting around to the benefits of whole foods. Dr. Oz was all for that, but then extolled the virtue of some sort of purple soy drink for children. Interesting definition of “whole food”.

  25. Oz had a few things to say regarding your post:

    “You, my friend, are a victim of disorganized thinking. Why, anybody can have a brain. That’s a very mediocre commodity. You people should consider yourselves lucky that I’m granting you an audience tomorrow instead of 20 years from now.”

    The Great and Powerful Oz

    Dr. Mike, it might be time to release the flying monkeys.

  26. Thanks for this article…

    When I think of doing juice fasting, I think hunger for days and running to the washroom.
    From what you are saying, the best way to detox is the way you have outlined in 6 week cure. I did it and shrank quickly. I would like to do it again however, is it always recommended to give blood afterwards? What if you don’t give blood? Do the toxins flush out other ways?

    Meat/protein take such a bad wrap….hardly anyone talks about or emphasizes the mineral and vitamin content in meat/poultry. Perhaps, you can write something about this someday since fruits and veggies are not the only source of micronutrients.

  27. Dr. Mike,

    You should consider doing a blog post with recommendations for how to do a real cleanse, based on your latest book. The timing would be perfect, and it would work as a nice plug for your book 🙂

  28. Hi everyone,

    Since the discussion of fatty liver came up I have a few questions. I was having some digestion problems and found out last week I had gallstones and fatty spots on my liver. I asked my doctor how to correct it and was told to eat a low fat diet. Is it safe to eat a lower-fat lower carb diet with gallstones and fat on the liver? I only had one gall attack since I really watch the fat intake now.


  29. Regarding the comment that Green Tea has almost as much caffeine as Coffee. Is this really true? I understand that it is true by dry weight alone, but nobody eats coffee or tea. Doesn’t brewed green tea have about one third the caffeine as an average cup of coffee?

  30. Unfortunately, Dr. Oz is rapidly becoming an “authority” on all things medical, and that idiocy that you so nicely evicerated will probably be adopted by a lot of people. His new TV show is a train wreck, a combination of Oprah and Dr. Phil.

    The Oprah part has an adoring female audience who hang on his every word and clearly see him as a medical genius–the image that the show clearly wants to project. The Dr. Phil part is particularly disturbing. He frequently has obese individuals who he claims to be willing to “help,” but in the process he totally humiliates them (the women are often crying from shame). He may have begun as a well-meaning individual, but I think he has become so full of himself (thanks to his adoring fans) that he’s totally beyond the pale.

  31. Dr. Oz, a man of conventional wisdom.

    About the only time I’ve heard of him stepping outside the box, is when he was showing Vibram Five Fingers on his show.

    I do think @Cynthia has a point somewhat. Think about the audience who watches Oprah & Oz’s shows. Doesn’t make it right, but my guess is they’ll benefit greatly from anything… even if that means only reducing calories.

  32. Dr. Mike.. Any chance PPLP will be coming out for the Kindle any time soon? I went on amazon to buy it this morning only to find that it doesn’t exist! Was disappointing.

  33. I don’t get why people need this kind of character to tell them what they already think is ‘correct’? just stick to the dumb conventional wisdom and that’s it, you can just keep doing the wrong things over and over again without any of this guys

    “Ohhh we all now you need a lemon detox and that fat is bad for you” Ok 99.9% of people take that as a fact! So Why do them need to hear this kind of ””’Doctors”””’ saying the same thing 365 days a year? They don’t say anything new, it’s all the same #$%%$ so what’s the point?

    Btw Happy New Year everyone! =)

  34. Ditch extreme diets. Take my January detox.

    Make up your mind, my good man.

    Thanks, Dr Eades, that was a laugh and a half.

  35. Hello, Dr. Eades. Just to let you know, the bouillon treatment for “Atkins flu” is working perfectly. I think I blew it last night, though. I had some marinara sauce with a lamb shank, after taking my mother to see “Avatar.” Afterwards, I stopped by the grocery store and picked up a jar of marina sauce to see how many carbs. Eeek! 14 grams a serving. Sigh. Nothing to do but get back on once I’ve fallen off. I shouldn’t have eaten something I wasn’t sure of.

    I’m disappointed because I was doing well at refusing the sides that came with the lamb shank. There was simply nothing else I could eat. Vegetable of the day was corn (No.) or you could forgo the corn and get a cup of ice cream for dessert (NO!).

    “Would you like mashed potatoes, french fries or rice pilaf?”

    “None of the above, thanks.”

    Haven’t these places ever heard of asparagus, broccoli, mushrooms, peppers, spinach, green beans, waxed beans, etc.? What kind of choice is that? Corn, dessert (which was bread pudding, rice pudding or ice cream), mashed potatoes, french fries and rice pilaf? Sigh…

    And I still let myself down by eating the marinara sauce. Back to square one.

    I find myself craving the occasional sweet thing once in a while, but I devised a strategy. Once a reach a certain point on my calipers (I use calipers, not scales), I can reward myself with something small and sweet. Now I have incentive to stay on, not temptation to fall off. And I set the bench marks far enough apart that the occasional reward won’t even come close to undoing everything completely. I’m actually hoping that the cravings will be gone by the time I’ve reached the benchmark.

    Rick, thank you for letting me know about the Oz/Taubes debate. I had read on Taubes’ Wikipedia entry that Dr. Oz had taken issue with Gary Taubes, and I was curious as to what the discussion was about.

    I had been checking out your blog for a few days, wondering when you’d pick up again. Thanks to the wonderful, who happened to mention that you’re up and running again.

  36. Hi Dr. Eades,
    I have been following your blog for several months – found it via Tim Ferriss’ blog – and greatly enjoy your posts. I’ve tried Metabosol and ordered the free bottles of Protexid for my mother a few weeks ago. I’ve also been a proponent of the Paleo diet for years despite falling victim to the carb crazies (Hi, My name is Melissa and I am a carb addict). Unfortunately, people don’t want to listen to reason or go against conventional wisdom, an oxymoron if there ever was one. My younger sister became a vegetarian 10 years ago, then a vegan 4 months ago. She eats constantly (nuts in her pockets à la Dr. Oz) and is always tired and run down. Over the years I have told her about the damage she is doing to herself with the huge amounts of carbs she consumes, but she thinks she is the vegetarian authority, so I have stopped saying anything. I wanted badly to show her the Vegetarian Myth book you discussed in your blog, but I am quite certain the suggestion would be met with indignation and she would never even open it. I can lead by example, though, and perhaps one day she will be more receptive. This year I am recommitting myself to a more healthful way of living, so thanks to you and Dr. MD Eades for your blogs, your products, and your books!
    Best regards,

  37. @Dr. Rosedale – I was just trying to find your current contact info in Denver for a bioidentical hormone consult. If you’re not local anymore, I’d appreciate some references.

    I’m starting to lose hope that the undiluted nutritional truth will ever be common knowledge. Even the anti-aging folks who are clues in a bit about carbs and insulin still spout the nonsense about evil saturated fats and red meat. If we can’t get the health talking heads to read Taubes’ masterful book, maybe we can just beat them senseless with it so they won’t keep spreading their misinformation.

    • @leslie
      i doubt Dr. Rosedale will see your question here, though he or his team does answers questions very quickly on his help support online at his website. I have read extensively from many of the doctors and i still come back to Rosedale, his information is just that bit deeper than the rest. He truly is a leader in true health without a doubt.

  38. I have challenged the Oprah people I know that she is taking the wrong advice. They ask me if I think Dr. Oz is a “quack” and I say no. I don’t think he’s a quack… His credentials are legit…

    Dr. Oz knows everything, except how to make Oprah thinner. Yet he came on the air showing an omentum. I don’ think either of them got the irony of that. (Just my gut feeling)

  39. Between your post on Dr. Oz’s “real age” and this one, I’ve lost all respect I used to have for Dr. Oz. He’s just riding on Oprah’s coattails. Considering that Oprah is the most famous yo-yo dieter in the world, what does that say about Dr. Oz?????

  40. My understanding is that in short-term fasts (e.g., 24 h) one can lose some muscle as the body produces glucose using muscle tissue through gluconeogenesis.

    But you do not have to consume carbohydrates to make up for that; dietary protein will do the job, as it is used in gluconeogenesis as well.

    Plus, one can increase protein synthesis by doing resistance exercise (weight training, HIT), which tips the scale toward muscle growth from muscle catabolism. This seems to work well with intermittent fasting, as you can see from these sites:

    Muscle catabolism happens all the time, even in the absence of fasting; muscle will atrophy if not used, even if you eat a lot of protein. Just note what happens when an arm or a leg is immobilized in a cast for a while.

  41. New to the site, though not to low-carb lifestyles. Any chance there’s an iPhone app in development that includes those handy tables in the “Protein Power” book? I’ve found a few carb-related programs in the App Store, but they’re pretty shoddy in their consistency. I’d seriously pay a few dollars for a Protein Power app that would let me take those tables with me all the time; more if it helped me set targets and track carbs over the course of the day.


  42. Fasting (as in consuming no calories over a prolonged time period) can be beneficial, but it’s sad that people often lump together nonsense like juice fasts with true fasting or intermittent fasting.

    I employ intermittent fasting as a method to lose fat and/or gain muscle, but I rarely discuss my protocols with the layperson due to the strong association with fad/detox diets like the one dr Oz advocates.

  43. @Jarrett

    If you do not eat fat your gallbladder does not work and there is no pain, but gallstones keep growing.
    If you eat fat – the gallbladder tries to do its job and squirt out some bile, and it is painful, but gallstones have chance to dissolve over time.

  44. Jarrett, if you’re smart, you’ll disregard any advice telling you to keep a low-fat diet. Especially to cure fatty liver deposits. Fat, and specifically saturated fat, are not inherently bad, though lots of dietary fat can make the situation worse if you’re also eating a lot of simple, refined carbohydrates and/or alcohol.

    The best way to eliminate NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease) is to minimize fructose and alcohol intake. Both have been identified as direct causes of fatty accumulation in the liver. Once you’ve done that, usually by cutting out processed foods and eating whole foods (whole eggs, whole milk, chicken with the skin on, meat with fat left on, multi-colored vegetables bought in the produce aisle, green leafy vegetables), you’re well on the way to recovery. As a second step, if you can cut out unfermented grains and pulses, most especially unfermented wheat and unfermented soy, you’ll be 90% of the way towards a diet that won’t sabotage all of your life goals.

    I know that going directly against your doctor’s dietary advice is going to be hard, but you have to realize that your doctor is stuck repeating what someone else told him, and is in a peculiar position where if he doesn’t repeat exactly what he was told to you, he becomes legally vulnerable. Even if your doctor understands the real relationship of processed foods and carbohydrates to health, he won’t tell you about it because that information is not yet in the “established standards of care”.

    Good luck.

  45. Mike,

    Another acute post. Poor Oprah!!! So… disillusioned!!!

    THANK YOU very much for the kind endorsement on the blogroll!

    You and MD do incredible work in dispelling myths, generously sharing insights, exposing ‘Oz’s’ and shining light where otherwise medical darkness and ignorance exists… Keep up the strong work!! I have a thin smart beautiful young patient (in her 60s) with b-stented extremities. Her Lp(a) dropped from 200s to low 100s on omega-3, low carb, high sat fat dairy-Paleo in only 4-8 wks. Her mental anxiety/fogginess improved further after she picked up your book 6-wk cure later. She says she feels GREAT. (now she complains about wrinkles since her minor body fat keeps dropping! I tried to reassure it will equilibrate later as was my experience). Just FYI!


  46. @ LCforevah : After seeing that ignorant video regarding “natural thyroid cure” I think I’ll pass when it comes to Shane Ellison.

  47. Dr. Eades,

    Is there a bit of discord/acrimony between you and Dr. Rosedale.

    I have read all of your books and have learned so much. Thank you!

  48. Been a while since I posted, but I thought I’d throw in a question and a comment.

    “Cleansing” of many types seems to be popular. The closest I remember you saying anything about it was a theoretical suggestion for the use of Alli (Orlistat) a few years ago. Any other thoughts?

    Also, maybe I wasn’t reading enough into Dr Oz’s (Mehmet, not Garcia) comments, but I’m also a big fan of Jonny Bowden, who SWEARS by juicing, although I don’t know how he feels about Juice fasts. Of course Bowden’s suggestions for juicing are things like broccoli, ginger, spinach, celery and a pear or apple for flavor, certainly not the pre-made sugar-water ‘juice drinks’ which he also condemns. He even recommends adding an egg or some fish oil to home-made juice for exactly the same reasons you suggest taking some fat with fruits/veggies. I guess I’d assumed that Dr. Oz was talking about the same thing that Dr. Bowden was.

  49. Why in the world is he wearing surgical gloves while raising a toast with Oprah? Weird.

    Wait! She is, too!

    Since Oprah did it, does that now mean that ALL of us have to wear surgical gloves at all times, or at least while drinking?


  50. ah what to say…Ozzy Ozmet is just a wash with primate adulation….caught up with being super popular and he just espouses what works for him and likely cos he’s so famed and presumably now deadly rich when really would he have the time to be informed and read cutting edge stuff ?
    Now that doesnt mean he’s not a fucking idiot with rgds to nutrition but maybe he needs some kindness.. and def more frooit juice too !

    Rock not Pop

    The Wreckless Pen

  51. I remember some years ago Oprah had the Drs. Heller (Carbohydrate Addiction Diet) on her program. She couldn’t stick to it because she felt like “If I don’t get some bread, somebody is going to get hurt!” so I guess she just kept looking for a doctor who would let her eat bread. Sure done her a lot of good (not). And it sure hasn’t done her viewers any good either (they could have really benefitted from sticking with the Heller’s plan). Keep up the good work Dr. Mike and Dr. Mary!

  52. In reply to Martin Berkhan.

    Greetings, mr Berkhan.

    You’ve certainly come a long way. Yes, fasting is beneficial for the simple reason that it induces deep ketosis. If you’ve read Dr Eades’ blog for any length of time, you’ll know that ketosis has many beneficial effects. Ketosis is regulated by insulin. The more insulin the less ketones, the less insulin the more ketones. Insulin has other functions elsewhere as well like regulating lipolysis and glycolysis, i.e. regulating the rate of release of fatty acids from fat tissue and the rate of utilization of blood glucose. Insulin also has the functions of regulating lipogenesis and gluconeogenesis, i.e. the production of fatty acids and triglycerides and glucose (or glycogen) by the liver. However, it can’t do its job alone, it relies on a host of other hormones that work either in concert to perform its functions (agonists like ASP or LPL), or against it to regulate its functions (antagonists like glucagon and adrenaline).

    Barring drugs or outright insulin injection, the primary regulator of insulin is dietary carbohydrates. Indeed, we can induce deep ketosis not only by fasting but by merely removing, or simply reducing below a threshold, dietary carbohydrate from the diet. This makes dietary carbohydrate the primary regulator of things like lipolysis and glucogenogenesis. Conversely, dietary fat has little, if any, effect on insulin. Consequently, dietary fat has little, if any, effect on things like lipolysis and glycolysis.

    Faithfully yours,
    the Babbling Idiot.

  53. @Giada

    Agreed. Most of his videos are not scripted and it shows. I had not seen the thyroid video as I have no thyroid problems and had only looked at the videos I needed to see. Since Ellison is not a medical doctor but an organic chemist, he should not have made a medical diagnosis and may not be aware that that is what he does in that video. It would have been better to have *suggested* that people adhere to a low carb diet for a few months and then have their thyroid levels checked, than to have blanketly stated that all thyroid problems stem from donuts! It’s a matter of sloppy presentation.

    However, his book, “Over the Counter Natural Cures” is light-years different from his videos. It is well written, organized and researched. I have already noticed very positive differences in my health due to following the advice contained in the book, having added some of his supplement regimens to my low carb WOE.

  54. ARGH!

    The comment about “cutting out 100 calories a day will lose a pound a month” is the kind of trite pap that most folks are used to hearing as dietary prescriptions.

    Not only is this comment the type of dangerous thermodynamic oversimplification that I believe has led to “fat is bad”, but it doesn’t even make sense if calories in – calories out = fat gain/loss. What if your client is eating 200 extra calories a day? Cutting 100 won’t help them lose weight? AGHASL:DKFJ ASR(PGUASDKLVN!

  55. I agree that his advice on dieting is ridiculous, but at least he is advising people to add some strength training to their exercise regime, and to focus less on their scale weight, and more on their body fat.
    Too many people avoid weight lifting for fear of putting on muscular weight, when they could be seeing far better results, as far as weight and fat loss goes, with the addition of anaerobic exercises to their workouts.

  56. Hi , Dr Eades. 🙂

    Ah, back to make believe in the land of Oz.

    Did you ever notice the more soy Dr. Oz is consuming the more he is starting to look like those Elf like creatures in his books?

    Take Care


  57. Fan of Drs. Eades work, used original book to lose weight. On fatty liver disease, I found out I had mild
    case after having abdominal CT scan for unrelated problem. GI specialist had just attended medical conference on liver disease that included American and European liver specialists. Consensus was
    that another possible cause of fatty liver disease was use of artificial sweeteners, something I was
    guilty of. Has anyone else of heard this ?

  58. Riley, I finally found a Super Slow weight-training studio out here in Orange County, CA, and I am absolutely amazed at how my body is changing. You can look at the website to see the equipment and read the philosophy behind it–that’s if you don’t already know. The trainer is very pleasant and professional.

    I know that I am putting on muscle as my weight has barely changed, but my clothes are falling off me. I am female and have been doing this once a week since September for a total of sixteen sessions. I have yet to see any kind of muscular definition the way you see it on body builders. I’m not worried that I am going to end up looking too muscular, and the difference in how I go about my day is phenomenal. I have more energy and picking up things and bending down–it’s like being a teenager again.

    At another studio, the 97 year-old mother of the proprietor is still doing super slow! The following video was done when she was just 90(!)

  59. It’s refreshing to find a doc who will speak up. OZ is stuffed with ego, His act is taken as factual at the viewer’s peril.

    Oz has the gall to label victims of psychiatric drugging as addicts. These classifications are worlds apart. Psyche drugs alter normal biological function. Then, when the victim-patient stops the drugs, a life-threatening situation and serious pain enter. Up-regulation can require years or a lifetime. The victim was not warned. The victim becomes a patient for life. The price is incapacitation and loss.

    Now how is this situation the same as a compulsion to use? It isn’t. Oz simply maligns medical-victims for personal attention. Can anyone say that he meant well? He feeds upon his colleagues’ victims.

    Reading the comments here is comforting. Here are people who think rather than follow with mindless adoration.

  60. I just ran through the comments posted here, and found them quite self-congratulatory, yet so totally ill informed. It kind of made me laugh. The interpretation of a ‘juice cleanse’ as listed above is quite bizarre. Who would drink 4 8 oz glasses of pineapple juice a day and call that a cleanse? That contains SO much sugar!! A proper cleanse contains multiple servings (6, on the one I usually do) of juices made from spinach, kale, lemon, some with cashew milk, etc… a variety of different juices, for specific purposes. They have protein, tons of vitamins and minerals, and after just a few days, my skin is glowing and I feel incredible. Yes, our bodies do this naturally. But the amount of crap we put into them isn’t helping us, so why not give our insides a break once in a while? And on the Dr. Oz front, I think you all are missing the bigger picture. The amount of people he reaches, in the country with the most health problems, obesity, and childhood obesity on the planet…ANY healthy message that reaches the masses is WAY better than status quo. Do you really think that 95% of this country even knows half of the stuff about sugars and sweeteners you’ve listed above?? No, they don’t. So if he can convince some of the country to make healthier choices, I’d say give the guy a ticker tape parade. The fact that getting Coke out of school vending machines was such a fight should tell you that while you all are mincing your way through the differences in sweeteners, many kids and adults in this country are drinking COKE like water. Perhaps a view of the forest for the trees would be good…

  61. Dr. Eades, love your books, ive lost thirty pounds and have kept it off, thanks to you and youre wife. It seems to me that in addition to the low carb diet, getting more omega 3 fats into the diet is huge! as you mention in youre book, a ratio closer to 2:1 or 3:1 with omega 6 fats is a large key to good health Also, loved the chapter on magnesium and how important the ratio of calcium to magnesium is. I think this approach is the key in preventative medicine.

    I wonder how can you reach more people with this incredible info. Maybe you should go on the OPRAH show. Seriously

    Thanks again,
    Mike M

  62. You drink a 20/80 or less when you juice fast idiots. Any physician that would not recommend juicing, or going raw if you informed him your were going to is suspicious. Highly suspicious.

  63. Where on Earth did you get your information? The is the worst counter argument to juicing I think I’ve ever seen. Fruit only juices…who does that in a juice fast? Crazy. Amazing what people will believe and then to congratulate you on such a great write up vilifying Dr Oz….

    • Sounds like a fruit juice straw man to beat up. Thought not sure if Oz meant FRUIT juice or VEGETABLE juice as I did not read the article. This article seems to go after fruit juice fasting. Not sure if anyone does fruit juice fasting alone without veggies.

  64. So Doc, you said ” Consuming raw vegetables and fruit juices without some fat along with them means you don’t absorb any of the nutrients. Dr. Oz must have missed that day at medical school.”
    How bout that orange that one consumes for the vit. c. I am supposed to eat some fat with my orange? Now that’s a first doc. Not to mention not much tastes good with an orange. Any suggestions?

    • That’s what I thought doc – no answer . Your idea has merit but it does not make ANY sense that one does not receive ANY nutrients when consuming raw veggies without some fat. You are flat out misleading people.

    • You can absorb the vitamin C without fat, but most of the carotenes, lycopenes and other phytonutrients antioxidants are fat soluble and can’t be well absorbed unless eaten with some fat.

      • I’m curious to know your thoughts on doing an all vegetable juice fast, with a tsp of coconut oil with each glass of juice. It seems like a great way to get a mega dose of vitamins and nutrients, plus the fat that is necessary for your body to absorb them fully.

        Enjoying your site – thanks!

      • ALL fruit and vegetables contain small (>0.2%) amounts of fat. That is where the lipid soluble phytonutrients are stored within the plant. There is no need to add extra fat to absorb these nutrients.

        Wild chimpanzees have no trouble absorbing sufficient fat soluble nutrients despite eating a diet that only contains 3% fat,

  65. this is a good article but i highly disagree with a low carbohydrate diet. i feel this is not only inaccurate but hazardous. anyone with a basic knowledge of biology 101 understands that humans’ entire physiology from teeth to biochemical pathways are specifically designed for omnivorous, mostly high carbohydrate diet. our teeth are not designed to cut meat, our physique is not designed to hunt, and our social parameters disposes us to living on land with direct access to mostly vegetable matter. the human body needs high levels of potassium and requires very minute amounts of protein to survive. large amounts of protein taxes the liver as well as kidney filtration capabilities. as mentioned above many vitamins are fat soluble, but there are many fats in vegetables such as nuts, coconuts, etc. proof of this in volumes is evident because all studies point to vegetarians with lower incidence of all degenerative disease and free of inflammation. chemical pathways to convert protein are backup systems for survival and not primary conversion systems, nor are they effective at producing large amounts of ATM. fruits and vegetables are mostly carbohydrate and fiber, and eating a diet of 80-90% plant matter is considered a high carb, high fiber diet. fats and protein are not harmful but they can be in large amounts. in nature animals would be lean.

    • Dr eades I would really like to see your reply to mr fix it’s comment. I am reading the vegetarian myth right now, which you have been cited in, and am just looking for validation in it’s ideas about the low carb diet. Is it true that large amounts of protein tax the liver and kidney. Btw mr fix it you are wrong about our bodies being set up for mostly carbohydrate diets look at Walter voegtlin’s table from the stone age diet

    • What a ridiculous post. We evolved for over 2 million years eating animals. Where are the centenarian vegetarians? In the end all vegetarians end up with bad health. Make no mistake about it, you must have protein & fat to survive, the human body does not require carbohydrates to survive. Have a look at how similar the human digestive systems is to a carnivores & how little it resembles an herbivores:

      Yup we have canines in our mouth for a reason and it is not for grinding plant matter.

      • Vegan gorillas have far larger “canine” teeth than humans. Monkey and ape “canine” teeth are actually used as defensive weapons – male baboons have massive canine teeth nearly 3″ long.

        The quoted herbivore-carnivore comparison is nonsense because the majority of mammals don’t neatly fit it into either category:

        – ALL mammals are evolved from carnivorous ancestors even sheep and horses.

        – Pandas and Polar Bear have virtually identical teeth and gut physiology despite completely different diets.

        – Rabbits have sharp teeth and claws

        – Giant Anteaters eat only animal foods but don’t have teeth or jaws.

        – Aardvarks eat ants and termites and have hoofs.

        – there is an entire Order of extinct hoofed mammalian predators called the Mysochynids.

  66. saturated fats are not harmful in and of themselves, they are only harmful in large amounts because eating more of them means neglecting less more important nutrients such as phytochemicals and antioxidants which the body requires to protect itself from inflammation and radiation.

    • Saturated fats encourage the growth of a pro-inflammatory gut microbiota.High fibre plant-based diets help create an anti-inflammatory gut microbiota.

  67. Thanks for bringing me to my senses, but I sure did like looking at his luciferian eyebrows and listening to his fast-paced speech impediment. I grew up on a farm. No one in the family was overweight. My mom had somewhat of a paunch which I have inherited. It just won’t go away. We ate vegetables and fruit from the land; a lot right off the vine. They were complete and full of all nature’s nutrients. I cry when I drive by the place–it is all apartments. We grew over 20 acres of raspberries, sweet corn, tomatoes, cukes, pumpkins, dill weed, and more. I hate to say that a heart surgeon is a “clown,” but why is he messing in something he knows nothing about? It couldn’t be for fame could it? The big question in my mind is this: how in the heck can any human ingest that many concoctions (supplements/herbs/vitamins) every day? Even if it’s every so often, it would take a year to get through all his nonsense recommendations. I have actually tried the Relora and other fat-loss supplements. Gee–they don’t seem to work. I have proof that he is making New Seasons market richer than snot. They had so many order of 7-Keto back-ordered, it took me 3 months to get mine! Here’s to you Dr. Od (I mean Oz). Pththththth–sound of tongue making raspberry.

  68. Dr Oz is like a “fast food” doctor – for a fast food nation. He’s like the MacDonald’s of health care. He’s probably better than nothing for a lot of folks who don’t have a clue where to start. ? I’m not sure, really. I know that I stopped listening to him because he seemed to be advocating whatever popular health craze was going around – and that’s not for me.

  69. Dr. Oz is also the one who said Oprah’s thyroid was having a “frat party”….Really? One look at Oprah would tell any thyroid savvy physician that she’s hypo as the day is long and needs adequate hormone replacement (and no, not just T4, unless she is a good converter of T4 to T3, which so many of us aren’t)
    Not to mention the content of fluoride in Green Tea that is well known to interfere with thyroid hormone.
    Yes, let’s drink fruit sugar juices to cleanse our liver.
    He’s ridiculous.

  70. ” You hear that sound??????
    It’s the sound of your mind closing. . .”

    Anyone who doesn’t understand the good Dr. OZ is doing or get what a wonderful, kind, sincere, awake, outside as well as inside of the box informed thinker/teacher he is, is an idiot.

    Dr Oz is a bridge from the old paradigm to the new. His mind is open to expanded thinking unlike the dark side brand of so called health care we have been subjected to for decades kindness of corrupted motives of the AMA and the BigPharm.

    What we have now is expensive cost prohibitive sickness/ crisis management.
    What we NEED and what Dr Oz so brilliantly teaches is true medicine which is based in preventative HEALTH CARE.

    I love Dr Oz and celebrate his presence!
    He is part of the solution – helping people to empower themselves to take charge of their own well being so as to avoid the horrid diseases our current so called model of medicine depends upon in order to feed their greedy toxic, insatiable money machine.

    You GO Dr. OZ!!!

    And all the other courageous MD’s who are standing up and teaching the
    truth you’ll never hear in your doctor’s office.

    Another hero: Dr Joel Furhman, M.D.

    Wonderful work!

    Truly living up to the Hippocratic Oath.

    “Let him who has ears to hear, HEAR.”

    The rest of you naysayers can go takea long walk off a short pier.

    The Truth will set you free, but first it may make you miserable.

  71. the controversy over meat eating goes on with respect to health. But as a lifelong addicted meat eater, the conditions in which animals are raised and killed is killing my appetite for eating them. I don’t think any amount of dietary advice could do this, but simple compassion is turning me away from meat.

    • It only takes a few months to wean oneself off meat. I went from eating 500g (1lb) of meat a day to eating none. I now hate the taste of meat. My only only animal foods one or two small cans of sardines per week. The only reason I eat the fish is to obtain omega-3. However vegetarian sources of DHA will be widely available in a few years.