Ruminations on lubricants, comments, shipping and books

This post is going to be one of those potpourri posts that allows me to catch up on a few issues that aren’t significant enough to require a post for each one.

Lubricant

I want to start out with a funny Q & A that I can across while catching up on my The Spectator reading on one of the countless flights I’ve been on lately.  As most of you who are regular readers of this blog doubtless know, I am a huge The Spectator fan.  I love the writing, the book reviews, the movie reviews, and even the advice column.  Said column is written by a woman named Mary Killen who deals with the social conundrums of the British gentry class.  Her columns are not of the ‘Me and my uncle got in a fight after I yelled at him for crushing my cigarettes during sex. He ran off but I still love him. What can I do to get him back?’ variety that are more typical over here.  Those Mary routinely deals with are of a more genteel variety, and she typically dispenses invaluable advice as she does to the questioner below:

Q. Please can you advise on a matter that, although seemingly trivial, is causing some tension in our household. Like many families, rather than spreading butter on our toast at breakfast time, we have switched to one of the supposedly healthier alternative low-fat spreads. Our problem is by what name should we refer to this new product? My wife continues to ask if I’d please pass the butter, but as it isn’t butter, I find this irksome. If I refer to it as margarine, she is annoyed by the implication that we are using some inferior low-quality butter substitute. To request that someone passes the low-fat spread is hardly elegant. Please, Mary, can you advise on the correct terminology?

C.S., Woodbridge, Suffolk

Why not use the word ‘lubricant’? The products to which you refer are, technically, lubricants, and when you have guests they will enjoy laughing at your use of this term.

Hilarious, no?’  And a great idea.  We never, ever use margarine or its low-fat equivalent, but now I wish we did just so I could call it ‘lubricant.’  Perhaps from now on I’ll start asking: Is this butter or is it lubricant?’  The possibilities are endless. I encourage everyone to start using the term.’  Makes this schlock sound like what it really is.

New shipping policy

As many of you may know, we have a products page on our website that can be accessed from the tab at the top of this blog labeled, appropriately enough, Products.  We never intended to be in the ‘products’ business, but when our first book Protein Power came out, our clinic in Little Rock was inundated with phone calls from readers wanting to know how they could purchase the specific supplements we used with our patients.  We began providing these supplements to readers who called from all over the place.

When we moved our clinic to Boulder, Colorado in 1998, we changed our practice from a local one to a more national one since, thanks to the success of Protein Power, people began coming to us from all over.  We put up a website listing the supplements we used so that people could purchase them directly instead of having to go through our receptionist, who wasn’t always available.  We have maintained some kind of online presence since.   But we have never really sold enough product to make it worth our fooling with.   We’ve always done it kind of as a service to those people who wanted to use the very supplements we used ourselves and used with our patients.

Since we never really paid much attention to the products or how many we sold, we simply set the price at whatever the different manufacturers recommended and added whatever the shipping and handling actually was to that price.  The shipping and handling fees were pretty high, but that’s what they actually were.  We backed up and looked at the whole operation a few weeks ago and discovered we were selling more product than we thought we had been, even with the high shipping.  When we figured our costs, we decided that we could underwrite some of the shipping and still pay expenses, including paying the outfit actually doing the warehousing and shipping.

We instituted new pricing for our shipping.  It is now $5.00 on any orders from $0.01-$100.00.  $3.00 for orders between $100.01 to $200.00.  And free shipping on orders over $$200.00. As those of you who have previously purchased from our website know, this is a huge decrease in the $10-$20 it used to cost.

For those who do purchase through this site and for those who enter through Amazon.com, a heartfelt thanks.  Virtually everything we make goes back into the site in upgrades and tech work.  These two sources of income are the only ones we have for this site since I decided that all the Google ads I used to have on the site were tacky and ditched them.

Just another reason I hate the government

Again, most readers of this blog know my libertarian leanings and sentiments, so I’m against vastly more government policies than I’m for.  One that really ticks me off to the max, however, is that governments (local, state and federal) all pass laws that they themselves don’t have to obey.  If congress had to abide by the laws congress passed, there would be a whole lot fewer passed.

On October 15 I had to mail in my tax return that I had to get extended because I had’t received all the documentation I needed to complete it.  When I got my completed tax return from my accountant, I discovered that I owed an extra $48 above and beyond what I had already forked over.  I was traveling and filed my return electronically but I had to somehow pay the $48.   My accountant sent me information on how I could pay electronically, which I did.   Of course I ran afoul of one of the many rules that the government plays by that it prevents others from playing by.   I don’t know how many people know this, but when you purchase goods or services on a credit card, the merchant who accepts the credit card has to pay a fee on each transaction.  This fee is typically about 2 percent.  So, if you buy $200 of groceries on your credit card, the grocer has to pay $4.00 to the credit card company.

Some clever merchants figured out long ago that they could avoid paying this fee by simply adding it to the price for anyone who paid by credit card.  So there would be two fees for any given product: one fee for payment by cash or check and another (about 2 percent higher) for those paying with credit cards.

Can’t have that, says the government.  Laws are passed so that no one can charge more to those who purchase via credit card.  (One wonders how much lobbying the big banks, MasterCard, Visa, Discover and American Express did to get these laws passed?)  So now, if you pay by credit card, you get the same price as someone paying by cash or check.  And the merchant eats the 2 percent.

But not the government, the same government that mandates that those in the private sector can’t charge more for credit card purchases.

As you can see below from the screen shot of my payment to the IRS, they charged me a ‘convenience fee’ of $3.89 on my $48.00 tax payment, which calculates to a little over 8 percent.  Just let a merchant try to squeeze a paltry (in comparison) convenience fee of 2 percent out of a buyer, and the same government is all over them.

What’s probably worse, is that I’ll bet the government beats the credit card companies into a much lower rate than the 2 percent most merchants pay.

Blog Comments

Once again, it’s time for me to whine about the comments.  Only this time it’s not a whine, I’ve solved the problem.  I think.  I’ve started just posting the comments pretty much as they come in.  I don’t know if I’ve developed a greater readership lately or what, but each post seems to generate about 200 comments, all of which I read.  But if I had to comment on each one, it would take me vastly longer than it took to write the post.  And I’m assuming that most people would rather read new posts than plow through the comments looking for my answers to specific questions.  I’ll continue to answer a comment here or there, but don’t feel ill used if your comment isn’t one of the ones answered because I simply don’t have the time to answer them all.

I had coffee a week or so ago with Richard Nikoley of Free The Animal.  He suggested I set up the comments to auto-post as they come in, which is how he does it on his blog.  He says it makes for a better dialogue among readers because they get instant feedback.  I’m tempted to do this, but I’m afraid if I do, I won’t read all the comments myself.  They’ll just hit the blog, and I wont know what’s going on.  Plus, nasty comments and spam (of which I get plenty despite a great spam filter) could make their way in.  If my new method doesn’t work, I may give Richard’s suggestion a try.  Any folks out there have a preference?

Finally, and once again, for the zillionth time for those who haven’t read it yet, I can’t make diagnoses and recommend treatment over the internet, so please don’t ask.  Thanks.

My nightstand, real and electronic

I realized in looking through the last few posts that I’ve fallen down on listing the books I’ve been reading. I’ve been traveling a huge amount lately (in fact, I’m writing this post at 37,000 ft between Dallas and Phoenix), so I’ve cut back a bit on my reading.  I usually stack up all my magazine reading and read it on a plane so I can jettison it along the way and lighten my load.  Since I’ve been traveling as much as I have lately, I still bring the magazines, but my book reading has suffered.

I’ve been reading most of my books on the Kindle app on my iPad simply because I don’t have the room to bring books on my carry-on along with all the magazines.  I’m somewhat limited in the books I get on Kindle because I absolutely refuse to pay more than $9.99 for an electronic book.  MD thinks I’m unreasonable, but I don’t care.  That’s my cutoff.  So, if any of the books discussed below can be had on the Kindle for less than ten bucks, that’s probably how I read them.  If they’re more than that, I got a real copy of the book.  We’re talking fiction here.  When I get non-fiction books, I almost always get the real thing so I can mark them up and go to the index and page back to what I’ve already read or check footnotes – all of which are difficult to do with a Kindle.

I’ve been working my way through The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf, who graciously sent me a copy.  Since I have the hard copy and since I’ve been on the road so much, I haven’t finished it because I haven’t had it with me.  I very much like what I’ve read so far and plan to review it here when I’m finished.

I’m also reading Steven Johnson’s Where Good Ideas Come From in fits and starts because I have it in the hardcover version as well.  Steven (who is an avid golfer) and I have been trying to figure out when we can get together and play on one another’s home course.  He’s on a brutal (scheduling-wise) book tour and I’m all over the place myself.  The book, like all his books, is excellent, and I highly recommend it.  If you haven’t read his The Ghost Map, you should.

I just finished Christopher Hitchens’ Hitch-22, which I loved.  It starts out with his ruminating on his own death, which is kind of creepy since he found out he has terminal esophageal cancer in the early days of  his book tour.  And I’m sure it was growing away as he wrote the very words contemplating his own demise.  (If you haven’t read of his discovery of his disease, you can read about it in his own words here.) I especially enjoyed the last chapter of the book because it describes Hitchens’ changing his mind politically as he gained more experience and wisdom with aging. His description of the creeching that burst forth from his former political cronies and allies who felt he was a traitor to their liberal causes is something to behold.  I didn’t enjoy it because of Hitchens turn from liberalism because his politics and mine certainly aren’t the same, but because his description of what he went through is pretty much the same thing long time vegans go through when they publicly renounce their religion and begin eating meat. Most of you know the tough road that Lierre Keith has been tredding.

Reading Hitchens’ book inspired me to pick up copies of Martin Amis’s Money and his father, Kingsley Amis’s book Girl, 20.  I’ve just started both and they’re both hardcover so are sitting on my nightstand while I’m all over the place.

I’m slowing picking my way through a difficult but worthwhile and enlightening book called Bureaucracy in Representative Government.  It’s an older book published in 1971 (and recently republished, I noticed when checking Amazon) when economists, in a fury of jealousy at physicists, all thought they could prove economic laws with equations.  The book is equation and math heavy, but despite that is a thought-provoking read.  The author’s thesis is that bureaucrats running big government departments (including those at the very top, i.e., secretary of agriculture, treasury and all the rest) have the same goals and aspirations as all of us.  They want to increase their income, authority and prestige.  In business, one does this by being a better business person, negotiating deals with suppliers (which I’m learning all about now that I’m in the appliance business), pricing product correctly and running a profitable operation with good growth.  If you are the head of a bureaucratic agency, you achieve these goals – more income, authority and prestige – by increasing the number of people in your agency and increasing your agency’s budget.  As a consequence, no one in a position of bureaucratic authority wants to see his/her agency diminish in size, scope or budget.  Therefore, due to human nature as applied to bureaucracies, the size will always grow, making governments at all levels larger and larger.  It’s the natural state of things.  An interesting but sobering book that, due to its complexity, probably won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.

I read Peter Robinson’s latest book, Bad Boy, which I enjoyed much more than his last.  If you enjoy Brit detective fiction, any of Peter Robinson’s books are worth a read.  If you’ve been put off of Brit detective fiction because you have trouble understanding the British police hierarchy, try Robinson.  He grew up in England, but has spent the last 30 years in North America, so his books are much more accommodating to American readers than those of many other UK mystery authors.

Speaking of Brit authors, I just finished Quintin Jardin’s Death’s Door, a convoluted novel with a plethora of police characters that are all either married or are ex-spouses of one another.  It was okay, but it will be a while before I pick up another of his.

I recently read Long for this World, a semi-jaundiced view of the anti-aging movement and Aubrey de Grey, one of its leading proponents.  Some halfway decent science and a lot of really great insight into de Grey, who apparently consumes almost nothing but beer and constantly floats around in an alcohol-induced, semi-conscious state.  If you’re interested in the anti-aging movement, I recommend this book.  If you really want to read the best book on anti-aging I’ve ever read (and I’ve read them all), pick up a copy of Stephen Austad’s Why We Age.  It’s one of the best written and most interesting books I’ve ever read.  Pick it up and you’ll find out how Paleo man lived as long as we do.  You will then be prepared when you present the health benefits of the Paleo diet to someone and he/she responds inanely with, yes, but they all died in their 20s.

Last night I had one of those wonderful experiences that can be experienced only by book freaks such as I (plus it tells you a lot about the dullness of my everyday life that I can get worked up by something like this).  I was laying in bed at about 1 AM, wide awake reading between three different electronic books on my iPad, none of which could really hold my attention.  I was reading on The Dark Vineyard, an acclaimed mystery set in the French countryside, Billy Boyle, a mystery series that has promise, set in WWII (Billy Boyle is a Boston cop who ends up in the army and acting as a sleuth in various WWII settings), and All the Dead Voices, a mystery set in Dublin.  (BTW, Billy Boyle is free on the Kindle.) None of these were really grabbing me, and I was wanting to read the latest Michael Connolly book The Reversal, but at $14.99 it violated my never-over-ten-bucks-for-an-electronic-book rule.  I was sorely tempted, but I held off.  I was searching for all manner of mysteries and everything violated the ten-dollar rule.  As I was looking at one (can’t remember which one now), I noticed a John Lawton book down in the section in Amazon that shows what other people liked who had read the book in question.  I about broke my finger navigating to the page and found that a new John Lawton Inspector Troy novel, The Lily of the Field, was available on Kindle, and that the price was only $9.99.  My lucky night.  I downloaded that sucker and read until 3 AM when I finally forced myself to put it down and try to sleep.

(Despite my wallowing in euphoria at having found the latest Lawton book, I couldn’t help but reflect on the technology advances that had made it possible.  Here I was, propped up in bed in the middle of the night in pitch darkness (except for the glow of my iPad), my beloved wife sacked out next to me, and I was able to search the entirety of books available, select the one I wanted, and had it sent to me wirelessly, and in just a few seconds I was reading away. Couldn’t have happened just a few years ago.  Ain’t technology grand?)

If you want a great mystery series set circa WWII, you can’t do any better than John Lawton’s books.  Start with his first in the Inspector Troy series, Black Out.  You won’t be disappointed.

I can’t end this book discussion without giving you a couple more recommendations of books I’ve finished that I’ve found to be excellent.  Michael Lewis’s The Big Short provides a look at some of the people who were smart enough to make fortunes during the recent financial crash by betting against the supposed ‘smart’ guys.   They were able to see through the government obfuscation and the PR of those who ran the big investment banks and come out the other end many millions of dollars richer.   I love real life David verses Goliath stories where the small, smart people conquer the big, bluff idiots.  As always, Michael Lewis knows how to tell a tale and keep it funny and engaging.  His description at the end of the book of his lunch with John Gutfreud, Lewis’s former boss at Salomon Brothers, whom Lewis wrote about in his first giant bestseller Liar’s Poker, is alone worth the price of the book.  A brief sample:

Hard as it was for him to enjoy my company, it was harder for me not to enjoy his:  He was still tough, straight, and blunt as a butcher.  He’d helped to create a monster but he still had in him a lot of the old Wall Street, where people said things like “a man’s word is his bond.” On that Wall Street people didn’t walk out of their firms and cause trouble for their former bosses by writing a book about them.  “No,” he said, “I think we can agree about this: Your fucking book destroyed my career and made yours.”  With that, the former king of a former Wall Street lifted the plate that held his appetizer and asked, sweetly, “Would you like a deviled egg?”

The most profound book I’ve read in a long while is Washington Rules by Andrew Bacevich.  This book has answered a question I’ve been wrestling with for ages, which is why other countries that don’t have the same economic engine we do are doing so much better.  If you wonder why the vastly more socialistic Brits, Germans and French have stronger currencies than do we Americans despite their having inferior economic systems and massive government intervention, taxation and regulation, the author of this book provides the answer.  This is an unusual book in that all the people I’ve recommended it to love it.  That includes liberals, Tea Party members, true libertarians and fiscal conservatives.  I haven’t given it to any hardcore, social conservatives yet simply because I don’t really know any. (Or if I do know them, they’re keeping their views secret.) The message of the author – who is a West Point graduate and retired army colonel with 23 years service – appeals across ideological lines because it is so obviously on point.  Here is the introduction to Washington Rules, a chapter titled “The Unmaking of a Company Man,” which has been online in a number of places, gives the real flavor of the book and tells why the author wrote it.  Read it and become hooked as I was, then get the book.  You won’t regret it.

So, there you have it: lubricants, shipping, comments, our government, and books all in one post.  I’ll be back to more traditional nutritional posting next time out.

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194 thoughts on “Ruminations on lubricants, comments, shipping and books

  1. “Finally, and once again, for the zillionth time for those who haven’t read it yet, I can’t make diagnoses and recommend treatment over the internet, so please don’t ask. ”

    Of course you can’t diagnose and recommend treatment over the internet. But new readers don’t necessarily know that (or they should know you can’t, but ask anyway). Perhaps a statement about this on the main blog page or in a line at the bottom of each post (perhaps in such a way that it auto-posts so you don’t have to remember) would at least head off some of the queries.

    • You’re right. I need to put that statement somewhere obvious. I’ve been meaning to do so but just haven’t gotten around to it yet. Thanks for the push.

  2. Hi Dr Eades,

    Re The Spectator – I and my husband love the Spectator too and my husband loves it that he can get it on his iPad now ! But regarding Mary Killen’s column – I had always thought the whole thing was a joke and that the questions she responds to are simply made up ! I’m British, though not of the gentry class, but I can’t believe anyone really asks those questions and reads the Spectator ! Still, I like the word lubricant for margarine…not that we ever have the stuff.

    Re the comments – I prefer your method as that way we know you’ve read every comment even if you can’t write a response.

    all the best,
    Anne

  3. Whatever you are using for post moderation, it would reject my latest attempt to post on your Nutritional Ignorance abounds. I tried re-wording my comment several times with no joy. This is a test to see if I can post a comment under a different name and address, and no URL

    • This one made it through. Maybe you got caught up in the spam filter, and I didn’t check closely enough before deleting them all. My apologies for the difficulties.

  4. Dr. Eades, “Money: A Suicide Note” by Amis is my favorite novel of his, and I think his best one by far.

    It’s savagely funny and the writing is deliciously wicked.

    You have hours of pleasure to look forward to. I envy you the experience of discovering it for the first time.

  5. Ha, “lubricants.” I’ve referred to soybean oil-based products as just “engine grease,” after the little mayonnaise packets stained my cargo pocket with a black and greasy spot. And, yes, I admit carrying them in my pocket is a little weird, but I’m in Afghanistan. I don’t eat them anymore, though.

    • I call them plastic. My dad uses soybean oil to season his cast iron and I have NO idea why. It results in sticky cast iron. In the past when I’ve cooked with soy or canola I’ve noted that it leaves plastic-like residue no matter what sort of pan I use, and in the past I’ve used both nonstick and bare stainless. (I still use stainless, but have dropped nonstick except for cast iron.) Back then I thought, “oh, it’s the high heat.” Now I’m appalled that I ever put that stuff in my body. I haven’t totally broken with it yet–I still get commercial salad dressing, for example–but I don’t keep soybean or canola oil in the house anymore. And I season my cast iron with butter, lard, or coconut oil, depending on what I have on hand, and the difference is stunning. This is exactly the type of cooking surface my dad’s aiming for and will never achieve with his polyunsaturated oils–dark, even, and–at its best–almost mirrorlike.

      • That’s really interesting to hear that soy or canola oil causes a plastic-like residue because I was puzzling over why reviewers on Amazon say the Cuisinart Green Cuisine non-stick frying pans (which are totally non-toxic) don’t stay non-stick. I’ve had no problems with mine staying non-stick and I use them daily. But then, there is no soy or canola oil in my house. I only use butter, tallow, lard or coconut oil in my frying pans. I rarely eat commercial salad dressing anymore–I try to smuggle my salad dressing (made with unrefined olive oil) into restaurants. Speaking of stainless steel frying pans, I don’t use stainless steel pots anymore as they can leach nickel and cadmium. I only use the Green Cuisine or Xtrema, both of which are non-toxic ceramic and recommended by Debra Lynn Dadd, the “queen” of non-toxic and natural.

  6. Some have said that another way of thinking of the credit card fee processing problem is that it’s not actually the merchant that eats the fees, but rather that these fees are passed on to the cash paying customers, some of whom are actually more in need of the money they would have saved. While I can agree with this stance, I still like the perks of my credit card and find myself using it all the time (even with occasional fees to IRS processing companies) just to get airline miles.

  7. Congratulations on having so many commenters on your site, and I sympathize with your plight. I won’t take it personally if you can’t comment on everything. Frankly, I’m surprised that you took the time to reply to so many comments in the past.

    And thank you for the reading list. Good stuff.

    Yours in Liberty,

    Michael C.

  8. Oh, I’m totally with you regarding the yellow lubricants (er… margarines/butter substitutes) — my mother uses all kinds of creepy chemicals for weeks leading up to her blood tests/checkups to ‘help lower her cholesterol’ — she’s in pretty good health for an 80 year old gal but I wish she’d stop trying to chase a lab number, depriving herself of good food for no good reason.

    I’m 50 years old, and I’ve shunned that stuff (‘healthy’ butter substitutes) for almost 20 years, and I’ve been in very good health (including, thanks to my moderate low-carb diet, keeping my weight in check and consistently excellent blood lipid and all other test results) despite a constant stream of dire warnings from medical pros, my mom, my co-workers, friends, etc.

    My wife has done even better than I, having lost 80 lbs over two years with another 30 lbs or so to go…

    Keep up the good work, the tide is turning, I think.

    • That’s the problem with your mother’s generation. They came up believing in Walter Cronkite and the mainstream media, and, by extension, mainstream medicine. They know, given their age, that the Grim Reaper is in their neighborhood and they want to avoid a visit, which they try to do by following doctor’s orders. Sad. The very group of people who need more good quality protein and fat in their diets avoid those very things out of lipophobia. Very sad.

      • Yup – she’s a ‘follower’ — she listens politely to us when we talk about our actual results & experiences with our way of life/eating, but when push comes to shove, she falls back on ‘expert advice’. I call this the ‘cult of delegation’ — delegating responsibility for health choices (among a great many things) to the ‘experts’.

        I suppose that I grew up at a time when we were told to ‘question authority’ — and I do that. I’m definitely not interested in the consensus — I’m only interested in what’s true, provable, and documented. (I’m a computer programmer, so I wonder if that has any bearing on any of this.)

        What really cracks me up, is that a generation who were telling us to ‘question authority’ when we were young, now want to assume the mantle of authority and tell us what to do, how to live, what to eat, what to drive, etc.

        On that subject, if you ever come up for air, booklist-wise, you might want to read Strauss’s and Howe’s Generations

        It’s a thought-provoking read, and according to the authors, we are dealing with a generation of ‘new puritans’ who are all too happy to tell us how to live, when in their youth, many of them rebelled against any and all authority. Fabulous!

        Cheers!

      • I was able to get my (then 84-yr-old, not 86) mother to fix her diet — she and I were clearing out her sister’s apartment, and she was having her usual GrapeNuts, 2% milk {eye roll} with a banana for breakfast every morning, and I began harassing her about protein and said her entire breakfast was SUGAR! She insisted she WAS having protein in the Grape Nuts. As we argued (we always do, happily), she stalked to the cabinet, pulled out the box, read silently , and then put it back.

        I made her a protein shake (with an egg yolk, leucine powder, and MCT Oil — guess whose 6-Week Cure book *I* was reading) and she actually liked it. So I ordered the fixin’s delivered to her house (she’s in CA, I’m in GA) and she said a couple weeks later that she was feeling SO GOOD in the mornings now, and not hungry till the early afternoon and having a great time walking my sister’s dog every day!

        She went mostly low carb (Protein Power) about 3 years ago, lost 60 pounds — her doc LOVES her labs — and she’s in great shape — except she still would eat those horrid breakfasts. Now, if I could just get her to drop the doggoned toast!

        It IS possible to wean them off the mainstream (everything), if you work at it long and hard!

          • I’ve been working on my parents for a long time but since Dad is a retired MD, they really don’t pay attention! Wish more of this info was in the mainstream….

        • I would have to go home and live with my mom and cook every single meal for her before I could get her to turn her health around. It actually might not be that hard to do because she’s in such poverty now that me living with her and cooking for her would be an improvement. And she needs *something.* She’s diabetic, has been since she was forty (she was born in late ’54), and it’s been impacting her mental health for years as well. She has to be on all sorts of meds just to function.

          It’s on the agenda. I can’t just pick up and go or I’d be there already. I get furious every time I see some low-carb blogger say “oh, just donate your carb castoffs to a food pantry” because people like my mother are exactly the people who suffer from that advice. Not everyone in poverty is healthy. In fact I’d guess most aren’t, at least in the U.S.

  9. TeeHee! “Lubricant.” Genius!

    I certainly don’t expect you to respond to every comment, for Pete’s sake. I do appreciate having your comments in color, because sometimes I want to go back to something you’ve written.

    Thanks for all you do.

    • How about “Full Synthetic” then. Well, some might think that is better.

      Is it Real Butter or is it Lubricant will be my question from now on.

  10. I run several blogs, and had a nightmare with “comment spam”. I switched over to using Disqus at http://disqus.com for comments. You might have your webmaster take a look at it. It has eliminated about 95% of the spam comments. Its easy for people to “Like” your blog posts with whatever social media they are using as well (Digg, Reddit, Facebook, etc.)

    No creech filter yet; I suspect to solve that problem requires a change in human nature.

  11. As a fellow iPad lover and frequent middle of the night ebook reader and internet plower, I wonder how you feel about night use of iPads in light of Robb Wolf’s comments on sleep and light…

    In fact, what is your reation to his statement that quality of sleep is equally important as nutrition to health?

    • I think quality of sleep is extremely important, and I think sleep quality is greatest when the room is pitch dark with no little lights blinking on various electronic devices (clock radios, electric alarms, TV power indicators, etc.). But if I’m going to read, I don’t see much difference between reading with an electric lamp or reading from an iPad. As long as I turn it off before I go to sleep, I don’t see a problem.

      • Robb does seem to differentiate electronic stimulation vs. other. If you recall, he wants TVs and computers off one hour before going to sleep, so I wonder if he considers flickering screens more of a stimulant than reading print by lamplight.

        It’s pretty amazing just how many blinking lights we have in our bedrooms, I used black masking tape to cover most of the following:
        – clock radio
        – cordless phone
        – 2 cell phones on chargers
        – 3 power strips
        – CPAP machine
        – smoke detector
        – TV
        – DVD
        – cable box

        Home Depot has some very nice inexpensive light blocking (not total blackout) vinyl pull-down shades that worked quite well in combination with our existing shutters to give us close to blackout.

    • I haven’t read Robb Wolf’s comments on sleep and light, so I might be guessing wrong on what he’s said. But I’ve read suggestions from others that our primitive ancestors, because they had no artificial lights, must have slept many more hours than we who can stay awake all night if we choose. But I wonder: how much sleep did they really get lying on the cold hard ground, huddled up with each other for warmth, keeping an eye/ear out for critters that might eat them, probably always itching from insect bites . . .

      I might get more actual sleep, even though I stay up half the night from time to time. 🙂

      • I have an internal clock, in winter I sleep probably an hour or two longer than summer because of the daylight. I haven’t used an alarm clock in years as I wake up with the sun. As far as our first ancestors go, I’ve heard plenty of good on sleeping in fits, as in, instead of sleeping for eight hours straight, sleeping for a bit then waking, then sleeping/waking. Probably impractical for most people, but from what I’ve heard it does wonders for people who do.

      • I’ve not read the book yet, so perhaps this was addressed… but once we had fire, it seems likely we might keep it lit through the night for warmth and protection, so maybe we’re more adapted to sleeping with a gentle light source than we realize? What about a bright full moon? I’d be curious if anyone in the blogosphere/book/scientific sleep research has addressed this. I know that for me, watching the TV actually makes me sleepy versus keeping me awake, but I’m also a very odd night owl as well and always have been since I was a teenager.

  12. Ditto on the big-gov issues. I feel that our founding fathers established this country SOLELY to eliminate BIG government, allowing States’ rights, above all else. Now the Federal sector seems to be running everything. It’s a lot of big money fed into it and it’s not a fair play.

    I agree with the ‘let ’em post’ comments idea. You’re too popular to go through them all now. Maybe you can have a feature of “report this as spam”? There are comments designs with that feature applied to them.

  13. I just found this because a reader of yours knew I might like it. Great! I think I’m going to like your blog.

    THANK YOU for posting your policy on Kindle books. I refuse to pay more than $9.99 either. It is a bait and switch situation. I find that many of the books I’d like to buy are priced higher (and sometimes MUCH higher) in the Kindle edition than any other edition. Looks like the book publishers learned nothing from the mistakes of the software, music, and video publishers. Oh well.

  14. I know you’ve mentioned British police mysteries in the past – just can’t remember if they included Reginald Hill and Ian Rankin. If not, check them out. Good reads, good detectives, Rankin’s books fall into your $10 limit and Hill’s are only $8. Enjoy if you haven’t already!

    And thanks for a great column . . . again. I certainly don’t expect an answer –and enjoy the format the way it is now so . . . keep those cards and letters (virtually speaking) coming our way.

    • I long ago polished off all the Hill and Rankin books and now get the new ones as they come out. I love them all. I haven’t read any on the Kindle, though. I’ll have to get the news ones that way as they come out.

      • Reginald Hill’s latest, The Woodcutter, is excellent, enthusiastically recommended. It’s a standalone, not one of the Dalziel and Pascoe series. Not sure if it’s available on Kindle, though. If you haven’t read Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie series I recommend them too. The latest is Left early, took my dog.

  15. I’ve started Robb’s book. I’ve scanned Robb’s blog for a couple of years, competed against him in the 2008 CrossFit Games, and recently listened to 40 or so of his podcasts. The start of his book is fantastic – enjoying it so much I may not even try to finish the “New Atkins” book. The “New Atkins” may work for folks with no background knowledge, but it’s not what I was hoping for – at least not in the first few chapters – which was a book with more depth of knowledge. Robb’s book has that, AND is more interesting and entertaining to read. Hope you will continue to enjoy it. He routinely lauds “Protein Power Life Plan” in his Podcasts. Best, Paul

  16. I’m surprised you can stand the flying as a libertarian. The payoff would have to be pretty good for me. I’m sure you are being rewarded! I’m a radical libertarian and the whole experience gives me palpitations if I let it. The cattle chutes, the groping of old women in wheelchairs, the naked body scanners like in Total Recall, the telescreens, commands blaring from loudspeakers, the slaves taking off their shoes and belts….And of course, the King’s Men are exempt. They may fly armed if they wish, even if they work for dpt of fish and game! Makes me want to vomit thinking.

    • I feel much the same, but my only other choice if I have to do what I need to do is to take the train or fly private. I’ve flown private a few times (on someone else’s nickel), and, let me tell you, that’s the only way to fly. Too bad I wasn’t born rich.

      • If you fly your own small plane on the shorter trips, wouldn’t that make the cost of ownership and operation at least partly deductible as a business expense?

        • It would make it deductible, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable flying my own plane on a tight schedule without being instrument rated. Which takes time and cost money. And that’s not to mention the cost of plane, the insurance, hangaring, maintenance, fuel, etc.

    • A friend of a friend is an air marshal. He told a story of how he was forced to turn in his bottle of cologne (more than 3 oz liquid) he bought as a present, while he was allowed(as it was, indeed, his job) to carry his loaded weapon on the flight.

  17. I think it’s a state (not federal) thing where the merchant is not allowed to explicitly charge the customer for credit card fees.

    However, all of the credit card merchant agreements that I’m aware of disallow charging different prices to customers based on payment method. So, it might not be illegal in the sense that the state is against you but you are breaching a contract.

      • The merchant does not “eat the cost” of credit card use. They estimate what they expect their credit card cost will be and spread it across a number of items they sell. The consumers pay all the charges – cash and credit card users.

        • The merchant does eat the cost. It comes out of the bottom line. If there were no credit card charges, the merchant would find that money dropping to his/her bottom line. The same could be said of theft. Merchants figure in loss from theft, therefore the consumers pay all the charges for theft. Which is true, to an extent. Merchants are in competition with other merchants. The merchant who offers the best deal is going to get the most business. So, if there were no theft and no merchant credit card fees, merchants would charge less while maintaining the same profit. The consumer would gain. Which is why we should all fight government regulation and theft – we end up as the benefactors.

          • I’m not sure about your assumption that merchants don’t pass on credit card fees. Most small business owners I know increase the cost of all goods sold to cover the expense. The only time they don’t recover the cost is on sale items.

            Then there are banks like RBC. They have a subsidiary known as SmartStreet, which specializes in providing lockbox and payment services to condominium associations. To pay dues by credit card, RBC tacks-on a $10 “convenience fee” to each payment, regardless of the payment amount. For owners of smaller condos, that amounts to a 10% upcharge. This gouging smells like “profit center”, not “convenience fee” to me.

          • Well, I am only going by what accountants have told me (awhile ago I was thinking of going into accountancy and I discussed lots of stuff with a number of them). They said these “costs of doing business” (there are a number of other such costs, like utilities, theft, etc) ALL get factored into the prices charged to the consumer. They may or may not itemize these costs; but the consumer pays them, said the accountants…

  18. Mike,

    I think you may have jumped to a conclusion in regard to credit card law. I believe that the various merchant fees and the rule against discounts for cash come strictly from the credit card companies themselves, and not the states or the Federal governments. In fact here is a link to a “The Street” article on a suit by the Feds to make these companies allow discounts for cash. As I understand it, Visa and MC have settled, but Amex is holding out.

    http://www.thestreet.com/story/10894565/1/credit-card-suits-effect-unclear-for-consumers.html?cm_ven=GOOGLEN

    Here is a quote buried in the article:
    “In the settlement, Visa and MasterCard will no longer prevent merchants from offering immediate discounts or rebates for using a particular card or other form of payment. Merchants can also give preferential treatment to a card or card network, and they can promote particular cards in communication with customers. Merchants can also tell consumers about costs incurred from the use of a specific card — for the first time, letting them direct customers to the cheapest payment. ”

    Feel the burn of government power!

    • I stand corrected. I spoke with a friend in the banking business who confirmed what the article you linked to stated. But government regulation is rearing its ugly head in many other aspects of the baking business in ways that are going to make it difficult for many people to get credit cards. And it’s going to happen soon.

      • Hey Dr. Mike,

        First, thank you for being so generous with your knowledge (and being so entertaining!) here on your blog. Very few things peeve me more than contentless blogs.

        Except perhaps merchants who attempt to pass credit card fees onto customers.

        Art D. is right. These are fees the merchant agreed to pay when the credit card companies agreed to do business with them. It’s a bill, just like rent and power. So there are two scenarios here. The first one is that the merchant failed to structure his business model to account for all bills (as with the independently owned dollar store in my area that I refuse to shop at for this very reason) and they are essentially asking for a mini bailout (which we libertarians don’t do, right? Bad businesses need to fail as far as I’m concerned.) The second is that they are simply being cheap bastards and asking the customer to pay their bill for them. To which I say hells to the no.

        I refuse to pay these extra fees. I either walk away from the purchase, or in the case of restaurants remind them that they are violating their merchant agreement and would they like me to report them?

        I also don’t suscribe to the notion that cash customers are subsidizing credit card customers. It has more to do with how your goods and services are priced–each and every price should be a combo of cost + profit. A truly profitable business is profitable in every area. Services/goods that cannot be priced at a profit should be done away with. Can’t figure out how to do that? Well, then, business maybe isn’t your forte.

        As far as the “convienience fee” is concerned, this may very well be a third party hired to process the payment. One of my local utilities explains this on the bill which makes it much more palatable as I’d rather pay said fee then have my power bill go up to accomodate a whole new department. I just wish they wouldn’t call it a convienience fee.

        But if it is the gov’t processing their own payment, well, as I said above, structure your business right or go out of business please!

  19. Great to see you posting regularly again! You’ve given me a good list to check out on my iPad as well. Thanks!

    Side note: Have you seen the Wikipedia entry on The China Study recently? An (admitted vegan) editor has removed all criticism and controversy from the entry. Any mention of Eades, Hall, Masterjohn, and the ‘pretty girl / English major’ Denise Minger, has been summarily and completely removed. It’s disgusting really, and shows just how dogmatic they truly are, and unwilling to tolerate any dissenting discussion.

  20. Love the reading list! Just started THE DARK VINEYARD.

    Absolutely agree on the 9.99 limit on Kindle books. It just chaps me no end that publishers think we should pay the same amount for an ebook as for a printed book. I can buy the print version at Costco for $14.99 so why would/should I bother buying the ebook for the same price.

    Tell your wife it’s the principle of the thing! 😉

    • I told her. She said, “Get real, you spend $3 on a cup of coffee. Why would you not buy a book costing $3 more that will give you many hours of enjoyment.” I remain unconvinced.

      • How about, instead of thinking of the extra three dollars that “the man” is taking from your pocket, you choose to think about the extra couple of cents that go to the authors whom you so enjoy!? Amazon has used its bulk and heft to cut down and down on the pennies that go to your authors — expecting them to try to make up in quantity of sales what Amazon takes out as its own profit. This is why I only buy YOUR books new instead of second hand — and the same for my other fav authors. They’re (you’re) not getting much more, but a little more — so I’m doing my part to support them (you two and them). Buy cheaper coffee and support your favorite authors! {wink}

  21. You’re in Boulder? I didn’t know that! Thank god, the place just got a tiny bit saner. I love it but sometimes I think I’m on moon. I do like being counterculture with my nutrition and politics though. Glad to hear I have a little company.

    • We were in practice in Boulder until a few years ago. We turned our practice over to our partner and have been taking a sabbatical for a while. So, we’re not in Boulder now, but we still, unfortunately, have a house there. I feel the same way about Boulder that you do.

      • I live in Castle Pines which is geographically (southeast of Denver) and ideologically the opposite of Boulder. If you ever tire of California’s political and financial mess and decide to move back to the great state of Colorado, consider Douglas County. This Libertarian leaning low carber loves it here!

  22. One of your best blogs IMHO. You should write a book, I mean a book that’s not about diet but more kind of incidental, like autobiography or a humorous novel. I reckon it would be worth reading. I’m reading a book you’d like (and may already know), The Road to Wellville by T. Coraghesan Boyle. It’s a comedic novel about Kellog, the heath fanatic who invented the Cornflake, gluten products, and the electric blanket, and his Battle Creek sanitorium set in 1907.
    It’s brilliantly written, subtle, funny and accurate to both the history of 1907 and today’s issues.
    It makes me realise where the whole Vegan crusade began – with the Puritans, the Temperance League, the fear of sex and flesh and sensuality. Add the various dietary restrictions brought by immigrants; kosher, halal, hindu, confuscian; then the trendy adoption of eastern religions (beginning with Aldous Huxley, who should have known better) and the assumption that the diets adopted by the most ascetic (and unemployable) monks and yogis to curb libido and alter consciousness were appropriate for people intending to work and raise children.
    Add the veneer of peudoscience (one of Kellog’s innovations – many of the meat myths you debunk come from this era) and a deep seated inferiority complex that leads the masses to look up to these superstitions as enlightened, and the growth of Wall Street medicine and food production, and you have the fertile soil on which the modern health crisis was sown.

    About life expectancy in ancient times – what are the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse? War, Pestilence, Famine and Death. Cancer, Diabetes, and Depression didn’t make the cut.

    A very enjoyable Kingley Amis book is What Happened to Jane Austen, his collected musings on literature. I think you get Amis at his best here; opinionated, prejudiced, and often wrong-headed (like an English Norman Mailer, except Amis is succinct, which makes all the difference), but erudite, witty and interesting. Even his put-downs of The Outsider and Lolita, two books I happen to like, are enjoyable and worth re-reading.

    • I read The Road to Wellville years and years ago when it first came out. My editor (at that time) worked with Boyle, and I talked her into getting me a couple of signed copies. A truly fabulous book showing food faddism (not to mention womb manipulation) at its best.

      I actually own at least one (but I think, two) books by George Harvey Kellogg himself.

      I’ve read one other Kingsley Amis book, which is a compendium of his writings on drinking and cocktail making. He was a famous drunk and has the recipes for many great drinks. But he has fallen in my estimation if he attacked The Outsider. I’m a huge Colin Wilson fan.

      • Wilson has a story where Amis plotted to push him off a rooftop at a party, and was only discouraged by a friend from carrying out this murderous plot. It seems Wilson really pushed Amis’ buttons; he thinks it is because he was (at the time) being taken seriously as a philosopher and litterateur while Amis was typecast as a comic writer. But the Outsider review shows insight as well as envy. Like Oscar Wilde, Wilson chose his enemies for their intelligence.
        After reading Road to Wellville I feel thoroughly informed about how such fads as “breakfast cereal”, stomach stapling and TVP entered the mainstream from crankville.
        If Gary Taubes is too dry for some, Road to Wellville may be a good mind-opening substitute.

  23. If I can trust Wikipedia (just this one time), margarine was originally made from beef tallow cut with skim milk and coloured with yellow dye. During the wars when beef was rare it was made from whale blubber.
    Things have sure gone downhill since then.

    Dietary saturated fat is said to elevate testosterone. This makes sense as a decrease in animal fat (and later palmitate from fat stores) would be the most reliable indicator of famine for a carnivore. The game animals would become lean long before they dried up as a protein source.
    Palmitate is used in gene expression; if expression of genes linked to sex drive and fertility was dependent on dietary palmitate, this would reduce childbirth at inopportune times.

  24. Funny you should mention Richard Nikoley in your post. I hope you won’t follow in his footsteps in how comments work on his blog. I am not sure what is going on, but he is on a war with anyone showing even the slightest dissent with his recent posts. Eff words are used freely and his readers are insulted in ways that shocked me. He is the last person I hope you take any advice from 🙂

    If you are curious about what I am talking about, check out http://freetheanimal.com/2010/10/the-us-surgeon-general-regina-benjamin-is-a-caricature-of-fat-america.html

    • WRT Richard Nikoley: He may be nice in person, but he even insults those who are in agreement with him, so I am not reading him as often as I used to.

    • “but he is on a war with anyone showing even the slightest dissent with his recent posts”

      That’s simply and categorically untrue.

      But believe whatever you like, as I don’t really care.

      BTW, Mike, regarding not reading comments if they didn’t come to you via moderation, you should be able to set things up so every comment comes to you in email, as I do. So, I read all comments that come in, but mostly in email.

    • I got as far as “fried sausages, for instance, are exceptionally unhealthy. . .” All I could think was, “Oh, those poor sausages; I’m sorry they’re so unwell. . .”

      • Yes, fried sausages are unhealthy to the max, since one would have to assume the hogs from which said sausages are made were dead. Hard to be healthy when you’re dead, isn’t it?

    • Just don’t go to that Blog system that lots of folks use. For whatever reason, I can’t make it work, much to my frustration.

  25. Dr Eades, the Spectator advice pieces are all a subtle class-based joke and not to be taken seriously – the English sense of humour gets past someone yet again. To be honest I’d expected more from someone as smart as yourself, but maybe this was just a blip. For the rest, love the blog and everything in it, more power to your elbow !

  26. Dr. Eades, my wife has an iPad (won’t let me touch it) and I am considering a Kindle. How do you compare the reading experience between the two? Many claim the Kindle is more like a book and causes less eye strain. Thanks!

    • I had a Kindle first and used it a lot. I vastly prefer the iPad. I like the backlighting, and I really like the fact that if I want to take a break from reading, I can pull down my emails or surf the net. Neither of which one can do with the Kindle. Plus the screen is bigger and I like the swiping of the pages vs pushing the button to turn the pages on the Kindle.

  27. Glad to see you posting again. I’m still doing zero carb, with the occasional nuts or vegetable. On those days I’ve noticed that its better to not exceed that range (60 to 70 grams) that you consider to be low carb.

    Since I’m getting plenty of sulfur in the meat I eat, I know MSM is completely unnecessary, even if effective.

    What is your opinion about chondroitin and glucosamine?

  28. I’m not sure if it has been mentioned but some blogs have a system where the readers can vote on a comment left by someone. If a comment gets enough negative votes the comment gets hidden. This could help with the spamming and the trolls.

  29. Dr. Eades, I also just read Dr. Davis’ damning post about butter. I’ve never knowingly consumed lubricant in my life–fry my eggs in Kerry Gold when I don’t French scramble ’em Sous Vide. But, he has the advantage over me, in that I don’t have a background in science of any kind, and when he’s throwing those numbers around it’s a little intimidating. I, too, was going to ask you to weigh in on it. “Jesus wept”. I get it. All the best–Steve L.

  30. Uh… I think I will pass, and so should you, on asking anyone to pass the lubricant—at least at the dinner table anyway.

    As far as how you should handle comments in the future:

    this one is tough (angst)….

    would I rather… have the brilliant, charismatic, witty and sometimes a bit edgy, celebrity Doctor Eades’s undivided attention—now that I know he’s reading every comment—for a few fleeting seconds… with the slight possibility that he may respond, usually with an entertaining or enlightening response…. or…

    would I rather my comment be inattentively thrust out there uncoddled in cyberspace blogdom… with a minute chance that someone I know nothing about, may have something to say about it…

    damn—I’ll have to get back to you on that one.

  31. Thank you for your earlier reply.

    A point you might find interesting. Prior to going low carb/zero carb, I was always the coldest person in the room. I was the last to want the air conditioning put on and the first to want the heat put on.

    These days people regularly say to me “I can’t believe you are outside without a coat on.”

    Could futile cycles account for this?

  32. Thanks for your informative blog and for inventing the SousVide Supreme! My family has been eating Paleo/low carb for almost 6 months and have had fantastic results. My only regret is not starting sooner! I’ve had my SousVide Supreme for about 3 weeks and it’s awesome for meal planning. Thanks again!

    • I’m glad you’re enjoying both the low-carb diet and the SousVide Supreme. We use our unit vastly more often than I thought we would. When the whole thing started out, we figured it would be something we used every once in a while, but we use it for almost all meals now. As I’m sure you’ve discovered, once you get the hang of it, it becomes indispensable.

  33. Have you seen this? There was a blurb in the paper today, and the TV news carried it last night:

    http://www.businessweek.com/lifestyle/content/healthday/644785.html

    Here’s a quote: “Successful programs to improve lifestyle choices on healthy eating and physical activity must be made more widely available, because the stakes are too high and the personal toll too devastating to fail.”

    The TV thing last night had a white-clad authority saying authoritatively that the only fix is “diet and exercise.” What a novel idea! So very helpful!

  34. I’m very much looking forward your review of Robb Wolf’s new book. In particular, I’d really like to hear your thoughts on whether dairy is okay to eat on a low-carbohydrate diet. He really does not go into WHY dairy is not okay, which is a shame because I think readers who are already low-carbers (such as myself) will want to know his reasoning…

    • “He really does not go into WHY dairy is not okay, which is a shame because I think readers who are already low-carbers (such as myself) will want to know his reasoning…”

      Kelly – Couldn’t agree more. At the end of the chapter on grains, he says something like: so grains are dangerous, along with legumes and dairy as discussed before (or above or previously – too lazy to get up and get the book) and I thought, Say what? I don’t remember any mention of or previous discussion about the dangers of dairy! I wondered at the time if it was an editor’s mistake – you know – take some stuff out because it’s repititious and never discover the “Whoops – we took too much” factor. I too would like some clarifitcation on dairy. And look forward to your review, Dr. Mike. The book itself is a hoot – lots of funny, attention-getting lines and fun to read.

  35. A pet peeve regarding shipping fees… If I buy a $200 feather, the shipping will be more than if bought a $5 lead bowling ball. How is that possible? Shipping companies charge by weight. Arrrrrrgh!

    Rant complete. Rebooting.

    • True. Except for on this site. If you were to buy the $200 feather (assuming we had one for sale), your shipping would be free. If you bought the $5 lead bowling ball, your shipping would cost as much as the bowling ball, i.e., $5.

  36. I read Robb Wolf’s Paleo Solution. I think his reasoning behind dairy not being OK is that the dairy proteins can cause inflammation and auto immune diseases.

    On the other hand Kurt Harris, MD thinks that in the absence of grains and legume to damage the digestive track dairy proteins won’t probably cross the barrier and that dairy in the absence of grains and legumes is probably OK.

    I think Robb thinks that dairy proteins damage the digestive track and cross over even in the absence of grains and legumes.

    I have no idea who is right.

    Kurt, by the way, has a 12 step program for going paleo and eliminating dairy is step number 12. So he is saying it might help, but that there are other things to do that are more important.

    • I used to, but now that I purchase most of my books through Amazon, it doesn’t happen much. Amazon let’s you know when you pull a book up if you’ve ordered it before or not.

  37. More on Soy (And Glidden Corp – used to be just the paint company, later became a conglomerate)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glidden_%28paints%29
    “Glidden also branched out into the soybean business, building a soybean oil extraction plant in Chicago in 1934. The operations were incorporated as Glidden’s Holland Mills, Inc. subsidiary three years later. The versatile soybean business complemented both the paint and foods operations: soybean oil was used in the production of paint and linoleum as well as in margarine. ”

    And:

    “By the end of World War II, Glidden was a leading manufacturer of margarine. Its spreads were sold under the Durkee, Troco, and Dinner Bell tradenames. Margarine sales made up a substantial portion of the Durkee division’s total revenue. The acquisitions of the 1930s and 1940s tripled Glidden’s sales from $50.17 million in 1940 to over $170 million in 1945.”

    Soybean oil has long been a byproduct of solid forms of soy products. Now it is everywhere in the food chain, because it is one of the cheapest vegetable oils. It used to be a major component of some oil based paints, but the cheapness and convenience of latex paints eliminated that soy oil market. Food now seems to be able to be made a vehicle for soy oil in more ways than just margarine.

    “Is it Butter or is it Paint?” You can use this for variety in the margarine question.

  38. a friend of mine refers to that imitation “lubricant” stuff as CLABBER. 🙂 i’m particularly fond of that expression — it’s so apt!

  39. Look at the early marketing spin on these “lubricants.” The Hebrew Race waited 4000 years for . . . Crisco?

    http://drsukol.teachmed.com/2010/10/23/baking-with-olive-oil-and-other-traditional-fats.aspx

    “I explained how processed-food manufacturers at the turn of the last century attracted large numbers of new customers from among recent Jewish immigrants with marketing campaigns based on the fact that the partially-hydrogenated (trans) fats in their newly developed shortenings were pareve, or non-dairy.  This allowed traditionally dairy desserts to be made kosher for meat meals.  Procter & Gamble advertised that “The Hebrew Race has been waiting for 4,000 years” for a solution to its shortening problems.  Endorsements were solicited and received from rabbis and other community leaders.  Margarine, Crisco, and non-dairy “creamers” rapidly supplanted traditional fats to become an integral part of what we now consider traditional kosher cooking.”

  40. I’ve been low carb for just over a month, have lost 5 pounds and 2.5 inches off my waist. I was 15 pounds overweight so I knew the weight would be stubborn. Very happy with the results so far, plus the increase in energy, lack of brain fog, etc.

    One thing that bothers me in the low carb/paleo community is the contradictory information. Just this week we’ve had Dr. Davis’s series on AGEs in butter and saturated fat; and now Chris Kessler says fish oil supplements are terrible for you even though Dr. Davis and I think Drs. Eades have had great results with them. I know the basic parameters of the diet are more alike than different, but it’s a bit disturbing to have one LC expert say something is good for me and another one say it’s bad for me.

    • Lacie, Dr.Davis is not a low-carb Doctor, he is a conventional wisdom Doctor who has a big cognitive dissonance. He is still struggling to rehabilitate conventional thinking with the positive results he gets from grain and sugar restrictions. As for Chris Kessler I can’t say anything as I do not know him but I suppose his message is, use omega 3 supplements to correct an imbalance, but don’t create a new one by overdoing it. One should know that the need for polyunsaturates is very low and should in total not go beyond 5% of total caloric intake (see the older series on linoleic acid of Stephan Guyenet at wholehealthsource).

    • There will never be total agreement in this area and there is no point in hoping for a “true answer” written in stone.
      We have to try things and see what works for us.
      It could be different , person to person.

  41. Re: my Sous Vide Supreme,

    Just a quick question: is it normal for there to be so much water appearing on the counter under the SVS? It is a sealed unit, so surely it can’t be leaking, therefore I assume it is condensation that is running off the lid and down the exterior somehow. It is substantial–if I do not leave a towel on the counter next to the unit there will be about a cup of standing water covering the countertop the next morning. The wife is irked.

    The number readout also seems to have developed a loose connection. Many times it reads all 8’s until I run my fingers over the number readout. It changes back occasionally as well.

    But it still works great!

    • Sorry you’re having a problem. The SousVide Supreme shouldn’t do what you say it’s doing. Go to our website, call the 877 number at the lower left and ask for Doug. He will go through your problem with you and get you squared away. We’ve got the best customer service imaginable.

      • Truly the best customer service I’ve ever seen. I noticed a problem scrolling through the recipies on my iPad, sent in a quick email, and it was fixed by later that day. Amazing! Also, I’m loving playing with my new machine.

  42. Thanks for mentioning Peter Robinson’s Inspector Banks mysteries! After reading all of Michael Connelly’s books in chronological order this year, including The Reversal, I had a reading niche to fill. Our local library only had one Inspector Banks, but in the multi-library system, all but three of his earlier ones are available. I found this out after I started the available one, and had a really hard time putting it down to get some sleep. I ordered the three the library doesn’t have from Better World Books, for about 12.00, including shipping. I can donate them to the library to complete their collection!

  43. ****Bursting randomly and inappropriately into the comments***

    I’m an Ironman!!

    I know this has nothing to do with lubricants, government, books and book devices, but I can’t sit around waiting for a thread about endurance events!

    I’m celebrating my 50th bday next month (hence the bucket-list accomplishment) and I’m a Drs. Eades fanatical low carber! I follow their PPLP and use their and Fred Hahn’s Slow Strength Training philosophy (although they don’t advocate protracted cardio training levels – that’s a personal goal). I’m healthier now than I was when I was 25 and I look and feel great – I even won my division in the race!!

    Sorry, still a little euphoric from Saturday’s race (and maybe still a little drunk from Sunday’s Jameson. And Monday’s).

    Here’s my victory blog: http://www.epiphanyhealth.wordpress.com

    Thanks for the swag space, but mostly, thanks for the books, this blog, and all the time you both devote to your work!

    ****tiptoeing quietly out of the thread****

    • That’s pretty funny, Stephanie.

      I remember reading somewhere about an experiment in which someone put a stick of margarine on a plate and set it in a store window. It kind of puddled down, and eventually collected dust, but no living creature–mouse, bug, whatever–ever touched it.

  44. Oh! Oh no no no!!! I just got your ad for the beeeeeyutiful and colorful baby Sous Vide machines! (http://www.sousvidesupreme.com/department.aspx?deptid=3) How do I justify to my husband that I HAVE to have the blue one when I’ve already got the full-sized one sitting on the counter?! (Oh, but it’s *blue*!)

    Let’s see, Christmas and my birthday and HIS birthday… oh, and our anniversary! Yeah! I think I can do that!! (They’re so cute — like little Daleks!) (Dr. Who allusion…) Thanks Drs. Mike and Mary Dan, for a super new appliance!

    • They’re not really ‘baby’ sous vide machines; they’re adolescent sous vide machines. Maybe 20 percent smaller volume-wise than the SousVide Supreme. Many people don’t have the counter space for the regular machine or want a second one to cook other stuff at the same time. We aim to please. Glad you like the colors.

  45. I will purchase Washington Rules, but I was surprised by Bacevich’s reaction to East Germany. He might have missed a 1967 book by Eugene Lyons, Worker’s Paradise Lost, written on the 50th anniversary of the Russian State changing hands. I would have missed that book if it had not been for my father.

    I was taught, in Economics 101 in 1970, that 5-year plans were more efficient (and more moral) than a market system. At 18, even I had heard of Soviet defectors. I assumed the professor also did, but chose to ignore these observations. There is a connection between economics, nutrition science, and climate science. Philosophy trumps observation, information, and data.

    If I had been teaching, Lyons’ book would have been required reading for any economics or political science course. Four decades later, it is still a valuable read.

  46. Yes, I saw those, Elenor! The cobalt blue is gorgeous, isn’t it? I was admiring that last night.

    Dr. Mike, I’ve been rereading portions of the 1996 edition of your Protein Power. I looked at that “cast of characters” lined up on the front cover with you and your lovely wife, and wondered how many of them still keep in touch with you. Just an idle question. . .

  47. What is the best way to get fiber in my diet following the power protein diet. Or rather how much fiber do i need to make sure i can use the bathroom regularly? Should i just get pills?

  48. Would you please put a link (somewhere where it’s easy to find) on your blog and on your site to the SVS site? I’m just about to go buy my beautiful blue baby (okay, adolescent) Sous Vide Demi — and I didn’t feel like digging up the URL from my overfilled email inbox… I came here to click through (your blog is in my Firefox Speed Dial)– and there’s nothing to click through from!

    I know you don’t like to advertise your stuff on your blog — but make it easy on a girl! At least put a link in your products section? Thanks!

  49. OK i’ve tried finding this on your wesbite, and even went to the post you sent me. I don’t care if i have a bm every day or ever (not possible just saying) My issue is when i go its difficult,I feel constipated. I felt this was bc i didn’t have enough fiber. What can i consume besides fiber to help out with this OR do i just have to deal with it?

  50. Re: lubricant, natural or otherwise, I have a question about the quantities to aim for to achieve weight loss. I know we should not fear fat, and that saturated fats are not unhealthful in the least, but it seems like some low carbers who are trying to lose weight force the issue, adding large quantities of fat to their foods that is unnecessary, not only taste-wise but calorie-wise as well. I mean, why add a tablespoon of butter if a teaspoon will do the job? I’m not advocating a low fat diet by any means, but do we really need the percentage of calories from fat to be higher than the protein?

    • If one is trying to lose weight quickly, the best approach is to maintain an adequate protein and essential fat intake while keeping calories low. I recommend that people consume the amount of fat required for taste and satiety, but I wouldn’t add extra fat just for the sake of adding it.

  51. Dr. Mike:

    Not sure if I just sent you this, because I pushed a wrong key on my keyboard and lost the entire page momentarily, just before I was to send you this info.

    In any case, thought you would want to know that there is a film specifically glorifying Drs. Colin Campbell and Caldwell Esselstyn, called “Forks Over Knives”, coming out in March 2011. Here’s the link to the film’s website:

    http://forksoverknives.com/about/synopsis/

    Best,

    -Paul

  52. Here we go again with dietary cholesterol as the devil: “the widespread perception among the public and health care professionals that dietary cholesterol is benign is misplaced, and that improved education is needed to correct this misconception.”

    From The Canadian Journal of Cardiology, November 2010, Volume 26 Issue 9: e336-e339.

    Here is a link to the abstract: http://www.pulsus.com/journals/abstract.jsp?sCurrPg=abstract&jnlKy=1&atlKy=9788&isuKy=946&isArt=t&fromfold=Current Issue

    Main body of the article praises the “careful and independent conclusions of Ancel Keys and Mike Hegsted” respecting the concern about dietary cholesterol.

    This has hit the headlines in Canada: “Single Egg Yolk Can Double Coronary Risk – Study” (see link: http://www.vancouversun.com/health/Single+yolk+double+coronary+risk+study/3762776/story.html )

    Can you comment, Dr. Eades?

  53. One wonders how much lobbying the big banks, MasterCard, Visa, Discover and American Express did to get these laws passed?

    I can’t remember the the author but there was a very good article about the extent of the “finance industry” (can you say Dodd and Frank) lobbyists presence and outlay to campaigns. Their $ amount spent to own the “minds” of the law makers via lobbying is 7X greater than the amount of all other lobbyists combined….that includes defense lobby!!!

  54. I love your blog. However I should point out that Visa is *NOT* a bank. The Banks are the one charging fee or the Merchant service providers. Visa is a form of payment. Your question is an apt one but the BANKS that might have lobbied for the change are well known entities. Bear Sterns used to be one of them.

    • I tweeted on it yesterday when I saw it online. It is indeed bizarre, especially the quote from Neal Barnard that cheese consumption was responsible for the obesity epidemic.

  55. The October 30th issue of Newsweek has an article on the epigenetics of sperm

    (http://www.newsweek.com/2010/10/30/how-your-experiences-change-your-sperm-and-eggs.html) —

    specifically how the things a father does can turn on a switch that affects daughters without the daughters being able to prevent said effects. Here’s the link to the article. The paragraphs that particularly bothered me (i.e., I’m reading it thinking, “wouldn’t Jesus weep about this?” were the following:

    Scientists at Australia’s University of New South Wales fed healthy, svelte, male rats a high-fat diet (43 percent of calories from fat—a typical American diet). Not surprisingly, the rats put on weight and fat, and developed insulin resistance and glucose intolerance—basically, type 2 diabetes, the scientists reported last month in Nature. None of that was surprising. What made the scientists take notice was the daughters these rats sired: although their mothers were of normal weight and ate a healthy diet while pregnant, daughters of the high-fat-diet dads developed insulin resistance and glucose resistance as adults—even though they never ate a high-fat diet themselves.

    Mothers’ diet while pregnant affects their children’s health as adults because of how nutrients and toxic compounds pass through the placenta. But fathers have no contact with their daughters except through the sperm that created them. These rat fathers were not genetically diabetic. The conclusion is therefore inescapable: the fathers’ high-fat diet altered their sperm in a way that induced adult-onset disease in their daughters. (The next step is to see whether grandchildren develop it, too.) Emma Whitelaw of Queensland Institute of Medical Research, who has found similar transgenerational effects, has called it “a molecular memory of the parent’s experience—in this case, diet.” Reminiscent of Skinner’s finding that sons and grandsons of his fungicide-exposed rats had abnormal on-off switches in their sperm DNA, the Australian team found that 642 genes in the pancreas (which makes insulin) of the daughters of the high-fat-diet fathers had on-off switches in the wrong position. The result raises the intriguing possibility that the childhood-obesity epidemic is at least in part due to alterations in sperm caused by fathers-to-be eating a high-fat diet. After all, while it’s fine to blame kids’ couch-potato ways and fattening diets, that does not explain why obesity in babies has risen 73 percent since 1980.

    Any comments?

    • Fetal programming is the latest rage and, in my opinion, important. Where the authors of this study went wrong is in applying the lessons gained from rats (which we all know are rodents ill-suited to high-fat diets) to humans. Rats aren’t just little furry humans, and data gathered from rat studies more often than not aren’t applicable.

      • “Rats aren’t just little furry humans, and data gathered from rat studies more often than not aren’t applicable.”

        I have tried to argue this point with Stephan Guyenet to no avail. (He also thinks that a diet comprised almost entirely of boiled tubers is healthy.)

        Considering that the natural diet of rats is grains they are probably the worst mammalian model for human diet studies imaginable. If they had used dogs or cats the whole dietary paradigm would be reversed.

        • There is also a very recent study showing mice developing IR and fatty liver on a high-fat ketogenic diet. And there are human studies (epileptic children on high-fat ketogenic diets) showing similar effects.
          They are the opposite of what we experience on high fat, ketogenic diets. What gives?
          The high-fat ketogenic diet used for childhood epilepsy is extremely low in protein. It may, in these cases, be below the amount of protein needed to metabolise the fats normally.
          Many, perhaps most children on high-fat diets are still taking some amount of medication for epilepsy, if the articles I have read are accurate, though less medication than they were taking before. Many drugs require Acetyl-CoA or protein for detoxification, and can cause deficiency of B5 or sulfur. A relative deficiency of acetyl-CoA would impair fatty acid oxidation, and the protein intake is already low.
          If the diets are constructed by people who buy into the lipid hypothesis, they may be full of PUFAs or trans fats. Trans fats alone would cause the IR/fatty liver results seen in the studies.
          Further, more calories from fat in a mouse experiment may mean fewer calories from chow. And chow is designed to supply protein, vitamins and minerals as well as carbs.
          Children on a high-fat ketogenic diet developed cardiovascular problems which were corrected with selenium supplementation. This is a sign that the diets, as used for these experiments, were mineral deficient.
          Yet beef tallow and lard, traditional high-fat foods, are good sources of selenium (200mcg per 100g). This result is consistent with these diets being “low cholesterol, low saturated fat” diets.
          If you didn’t make the mistake of supplying non-traditional, pro-oxidant fats as “empty calories”, but used traditional animal fats instead, if you kept protein levels from high-nutrient animal foods adequate, and supplied the allowed carbs as nutrient-dense green veges (not grains, sugar or potatoes), you would be a lot less likely to run into these problems. And you could always take a multivitamin supplement, especially if drugs have to be metabolised as well as the macronutrients.

          • However: “At present, few interactions between selenium and medications are known (63). The anticonvulsant medication valproic acid has been found to decrease plasma selenium levels.”
            And, in Dravet’s syndrome: “Even when seizure reduction was not dramatic, the patient’s quality of life improved, and the number of antiepileptic drugs administered to all the children was reduced to one or two. ”
            So it is probably not the diet producing the deficiency, but particular diets may do less to prevent it.
            Poorly constructed hospital diets (which tend to be processed food diets, and may be very high in trans fats in the USA) can produce other problems: Article abstract Cardiac complications of the ketogenic diet, in the absence of selenium deficiency, have not been reported. Twenty patients on the ketogenic diet at one institution were investigated. Prolonged QT interval (QTc) was found in 3 patients (15%). There was a significant correlation between prolonged QTc and both low serum bicarbonate and high beta-hydroxybutyrate. In addition, three patients had evidence of cardiac chamber enlargement. One patient with severe dilated cardiomyopathy and prolonged QTc normalized when the diet was discontinued.
            Of course many people using these diets in hospitals want an excuse to go back to the old way of doing things.
            The author of the Ketogenic Diet epilepsy books advises that children on the diet be given multivitamin and mineral supplements. Fat requires vitamins, minerals and protein for metabolism but is not a good source of water soluble vitamins and most minerals. Vegetable oil seems to lack all but vitamin K.

          • The typical ketogenic diets used to treat epilepsy are absurd – raw vegetables, vegetable oils, very little meat and very severe water restriction. In some cases they are a liquid diet based on medium chain triglycerides. They are a poor source of vitamins and minerals and don’t contain important nutrients such as carnosine or L-carnitine.

  56. Thanks for the reply, Mike. Something to tell people when they start the usual “you don’t know what you’re doing to your health.” I assume rats are used because they’re cheap and plentiful? But why, then, do we keep getting told that what happens to them will happen to us? Oh . . . compliance. Oh yeah. I get it.

    Thanks again!

    • One really interesting study of rats–or was it mice?–was discussed at some length in the comments section on this blog. Apologies for the hazy recall, but basically …

      The rodents were fed a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet, and the researchers were shocked–shocked!!–to discover that various symptoms of cardiovascular disease developed in the study population. They concluded that a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet leads to cardiovascular disease.

      I concluded that if rodents consume a diet ideal for humans, they develop cardiovascular disease, much like humans develop cardiovascular disease if they consume a diet ideal for rodents. Seems to me that the really interesting question is why, both in humans and in rodents, a highly unsuitable diet results in cardiovascular disease.

    • Gary Taubes makes the point that the rats that are fattened on high-fat diets in experiements have been specially bred from mutants that get fat on fats. Normal rats won’t fatten on such a diet. Less than 1% of humans will, but we always could breed more – then maybe the “dietary guidelines for Americans” will be relevant.
      It as if rats only experimented with fats on humans bred to have familial hypercholesterolaemia.
      Also, there is evidence in humans that high-carb diets produce the same epigenetic effects; that is basically how they were discovered in the first place.
      This article sounds like last-ditch obfuscation.

      • Around 1900-1910 Rudyard Kipling visited New Zealand. A poem he wrote about N.Z., South Africa, Australia and Canada after his visit characterised New Zealand males with these words – “the five-meal, meat-fed men”.
        These men were the Anzacs who impressed all Europe with their health, vigor and intelligence in the Great War, and they ate what their parents and grandparents ate before them.
        Their daughters certainly did not suffer from insulin resistance, obesity or diabetes. It has taken an increased consumption of refined carbohydrates and vegetable oils and a decreased intake of red meat and saturated fats since the 1960s to produce that disaster.

        • I think I’ve found the smoking gun in the rat science: rats have a distinctly different way of distributing cholesterol, phospholipids and lipoproteins from humans. The various cholesterol fractions and even the glands and organs have different functions. Also, rat liver oxidizes choline to betaine; human liver does not.
          The specific details about how the functions of VLDL-c, LDL-c and HDL-c differ between the species I will post later when I have access to my physiology textbook. But it really does rule out lipid research in rats (and very likely mice) having much relevance to humans.

          • Here it is; these are the differences recorded in a 1985 medical text on human phisiology.
            “At the outset it should be recognised that there are important species differences in the composition and pattern of tissue lipoproteins and in the ways in which they are metabolised. For example, most animals have extremely low plasma concentrations of LDL; man has the highest levels found in any animal species”
            “weight for weight the gonads are extremely active in LDL degradation, which provides cholesterol precursor for the biosynthesis of the steroid hormones they produce… in the rat it appears that HDL plays an important role analogous to this role of LDL,i.e., HDL, recognised by its apoprotein E moiety, delivers a significant amount of cholesterol to adrenal and gonads”
            “chylomicrons contain a form of apoprotein B that is synthesised only by the intestine in man (but synthesised also by the liver in rats)”
            “Cholesterol esters can be transferred among lipoprotein classes, a process mediated by an exchange carrier protein present in normal humanplasma and in the plasma of most animals (absent in the rat)”

            Also, rats do not have gall bladders, which tends to indicate that they did not evolve by eating foods rich in fats, and that humans did. The gall badder stores bile so that the high concentrations needed to digest large fatty meals can be provided. The rat also lacks a veriform appendix and uvula.

            Also
            In rodents but not in humans, LXR activation enhances hepatic cholesterol catabolism partly through increased expression of cytochrome P450 7A1, the rate-limiting enzyme in the classic conversion of cholesterol to bile acids (Chiang et al., 2001). Moreover, it has been shown that LXR agonists inhibit the expression of hepatic gluconeogenic genes and reduce blood glucose levels in diabetic animal models, suggesting an antidiabetic effect (Cao et al., 2003; Laffitte et al., 2003). On the other hand, LXR knockout mice do not have increased glucose levels but show improved glucose utilization (Schuster et al., 2006). Antiatherosclerotic effects of LXR activation and the potential of LXR agonists for therapeutic interventions are impeded by the concomitant stimulation of hepatic lipogenesis, leading to increased serum triglycerides, an effect mainly mediated via LXRα (Schultz et al., 2000). Increased lipogenesis is also a troublesome consequence of hyperinsulinemia associated with obesity and preceding overt diabetes, and the effects of insulin on hepatic gene expression are similar to the effects of LXRα activation (Foufelle and Ferre, 2002).
            http://molpharm.aspetjournals.org/content/72/4/947.full

            I think we can agree with Peta on at least one thing; vivisection is being seriously over-rated as a source of valuable data. When it comes to human diet, there is really no need for animal experiments at all; everyone eats and many people experiment voluntarily with extremes of diet, with good compliance and real interest in the results.

          • The Physiology text makes an interesting point; during growth and tissue repair, the demand for cholesterol may exceed the amount that the non-liver tissues can synthesise de novo. In such cases increased levels of LDL-c may be beneficial. Attempts to lower LDL-c in children may be doubly misguided.
            In fact, it seems to me that if there is no cholesterol in the diet there is more need for LDL-c and less requirement for HDL-c. It may be cholesterol in the diet, as well as saturated fat, that elevates HDL-c.

          • Whether high or low LDL or HDL is “good for you” or not might depend to some extent on the rate of de novo cholesterol synthesis in non-liver tissues or the extent to which chylomicron cholsterol can be utilized by cells and glands, as well as the cellular demand for cholesterol (the rate of growth and repair, the varying hormonal states).

      • Google “5TJP” — it’s the “Atkins-Type Diet for Rodents” from an outfit called TestDiet (www.testdiet.com). Download and read the ingredients list.

        If you think that list of ingredients has any resemblance to an Atkins diet, then you are as stupid as Ornish.

  57. There you are! Included in the daily mountain of catalogs that arrived in today’s mail was a catalog called “Chefs.” Flipping through, I saw a gadget for sealing things in plastic pouches. “Hmmm,” I thought, “that would work for a Sous Vide machine.” Sure enough. I looked again, and there was a Sous Vide machine next to it. Too bad they didn’t mention all the gorgeous colors–cobalt and cobalt and cobalt. . . . 🙂

  58. Sorry for off topic; I just sent my sister the Protein Power Life Plan, and she asks if there are any citations for the text.
    Is there anyplace I can send her? She’s a PhD ecconmist, and always asks about documentation.
    If I can get her to read it, her poor statin poisoned husband may benefit.

    • I had the bibliographies of both PP and the PPLP, but they’ve somehow gotten lost in the changeovers from various computers over the years. I’m sure I have them on a CD somewhere, and I know I have them in hard copy in a big box somewhere. Problem is in finding the time to root them out and put them up online.

      I’m curious, though, as to what kind of documentation your PhD economist sister required to have her husband put on statins? Were there studies showing he had a statin deficiency? Or did he/she just go along with whatever the doctor said?

  59. I eat 3500-4000KCal per day on 80% fat diet with less than 20g of carbohydrate. I do virtually no exercise . My weight has hovered around 74-75kg for over three years.

    • I have experimented with massive quantities of fat, and as long as I keep carb under about 50-60g, I do not gain weight even with 400g+ of fat. Just for grins, I tried Bernstein’s olive oil experiment, and got the same results his patients did. My weight appears stable regardless of fat intake, and I gain rapidly with more than about 150g carb. I currently keep carb between about 50-100g.

      However, after easily losing just over 100 lbs, I still have about 50 lbs excess weight, which doesn’t want to budge. Low carb may be necessary, but it doesn’t seem to be sufficient. I have added a bit of weight training (Fred Hahn style; I had a personal session from him on last week’s 4th Annual Low Carb Cruise), and I’ve been bicycling to work (6 fairly easy miles) for the last several weeks, and that seems to be helping other things — but so far, I have not broken through the 248 lb level.

      I think I still need to do some tweaking on the diet. Maybe I’m getting too much protein… Or maybe I just need to go back to keeping a detailed diet journal to see if I have fallen victim to “carb creep” and getting more than the 50-100g that I think. However, one good sign is that I am almost never hungry, and occasionally forget to eat.

      Speaking of the Low Carb Cruise, I sure wish that Dr. Eades had been there. But I understand that he is too busy peddling his precision slow-cooker.

  60. http://jcem.endojournals.org/cgi/content/full/88/4/1617

    One group of dieters was instructed to follow an ad libitum diet with a maximum intake of 20 g carbohydrate/d (8). It was anticipated that this diet would induce ketosis. After 2 wk of dieting, subjects were permitted to increase their intake of carbohydrate to 40–60 g/d only if self-testing of urinary ketones continued to indicate ketosis. The other group of dieters was instructed on a calorie-restricted, moderately low fat diet with a recommended macronutrient distribution of 55% carbohydrate, 15% protein, and 30% fat.

    Women on both diets reduced calorie consumption by comparable amounts at 3 and 6 months. The very low carbohydrate diet group lost more weight (8.5 ± 1.0 vs. 3.9 ± 1.0 kg; P < 0.001) and more body fat (4.8 ± 0.67 vs. 2.0 ± 0.75 kg; P < 0.01) than the low fat diet group. Mean levels of blood pressure, lipids, fasting glucose, and insulin were within normal ranges in both groups at baseline. Although all of these parameters improved over the course of the study, there were no differences observed between the two diet groups at 3 or 6 months. ß- Hydroxybutyrate increased significantly in the very low carbohydrate group at 3 months (P = 0.001). Based on these data, a very low carbohydrate diet is more effective than a low fat diet for short-term weight loss and, over 6 months, is not associated with deleterious effects on important cardiovascular risk factors in healthy women.
    Cardiovascular risk factors
    EKG. There were no electrocardiographic abnormalities in any of the subjects during the study.
    Blood pressure. The blood pressures in the two groups were within the normal range at the outset of the study and remained so throughout the study (Table 4). Significant differences in blood pressure were not found between the groups during the study.

  61. Dr Eades. I’ve been reading your excellent blog since about 2005, (since I began my own low carb way of eating, and lost a lot of weight and turned my health and diabetes around)…and seems to me you are the type of guy who likes to root out and expose false claims…

    I wonder if you have seen this very curious article
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-robbins/being-fat-in-america_b_840994.html

    It tells the story of a woman who claims at 400 pounds, she was on every oral diabetic drug known +200 units of insulin (that’s a LOT!), while eating an almost no carb diet prescribed by her doctors (never heard of that),
    Then was miraculously cured of diabetes when she went vegan? NEVER heard of that either.
    Something stinks about that article…

  62. You say: “I absolutely refuse to pay more than $9.99 for an electronic book.” And I understand and agree with your stance that it is a matter of “principle.”

    Imagine my surprise when I logged onto Amazon to purchase some of your books to discover that several of your “Kindle” editions were priced higher than your own $9.99 cutoff (i.e. Staying Power: $15.37, The Low-Carb CookwoRx Cookbook: $11.99, the Six-week Cure for Middle-Aged Middle: $11.99).

    I’m sure that the irony of this doesn’t escape you. So, how about leaning on your publisher(s) in support of making your ebooks more affordable for your many fans who enjoy carrying “you” around with them on their travels? (I, for one, also have a “hard” copy at home for reference.)

    Thank you for all that you have done and continue to do to dispel the myths and misunderstanding surrounding the connection between proper nutrition and good health. You and Dr. Mary Dan are truly modern day “heroes!”

    • It is indeed ironic. Unfortunately, we (and other authors) have no say in the pricing of our books whether published in print or ebook format. I do agree with you that the prices of our books in electronic version would put them above my $9.99 cutoff for purchasing.

      There are many books that I would like to have in the print version and the electronic version – it seems strange that if you buy one (especially the print version), you can’t get the other for free. Newspapers and magazines do this routinely. You subscribe to the print version of the magazine or paper and get the electronic version thrown in free.

  63. Here in Australia we are practically communists by American standards. Yet we somehow manage to have half the unemployment rate of the USA, a very generous welfare system, a minimum wage twice as high as the USA, free healthcare and heavily subsidised university fees with payments delayed until students earn a good income. We also have much better weather and very little violent crime. What’s not to love?

  64. That’s really interesting to hear that soy or canola oil causes a plastic-like residue because I was puzzling over why reviewers on Amazon say the Cuisinart Green Cuisine non-stick frying pans (which are totally non-toxic) don’t stay non-stick. I’ve had no problems with mine staying non-stick and I use them daily