Episode-786- Dr. Greg Ellis on Low Carb Nutrition — 41 Comments

  1. Discovered Dr. Ellis and his books in 2004. Bought all of them and got re-educated from Pharmacy School in the 70’s. Had previously done Dr. Atkins from the 70’s with good results but backslid many times… my fault. From all the diet changes I have seen this is the best. Sort of like Paleo. Haven’t listened to podcast yet, just downloaded and thought I would comment anyway from past experiences.. Just lost 21 lbs in last 2 months finally getting myself back to where I am suppose to be.. Too many Buffets, trying to get my money’s worth.. right foods but too much volume (calories)… avoiding Chinese is hard… Have to get latest book, have been putting off, but 15% discount sure helps motivate me. Thanks Jack.

    George Jones Pharmacist Retired

  2. Obesity in animals– ever seen a fat Greyhound? It’s rare. I’ve heard of them, but they tend to quickly run into cardiac issues if they do. A well-fed Greyhound will usually not waver much over 5 pounds over their racing weight in retirement. I have shared my life with 5 of these amazing dogs, and I can assure you that aside from fairly brief runs around the yard (and they are brief– never more than 10 minutes during their most intense play), they are generally asleep or lounging on the couch. Greyhounds are considered to be extremely close to their original genotype due to restrictions on their breeding for a huge percentage of their ancestry. They, by the way, truly prosper on a very low-carb diet. I no longer allow kibble in the house as it is too high-carb.

  3. Sigh, sorry about the second comment but have got to pipe up about vaccines. There are a series of graphs out there that do nothing but graph the incidence of each of the vaccinated diseases against time, with a bar indicating the year of release for the vaccine. Their power is in showing that the vast majority of morbidity and mortality in these diseases had subsided BEFORE the vaccine was introduced. I think other technologies– clean water, better food access, heck, even cheaper soap– probably had something to do with the large pre-vaccine reductions in mortality. To me, clean water and good soap seem like fine ideas. Vaccines, especially given the adjuvant junk in there, are not so great. They come with a LOT of side effects and reactions. Both my husband and I have suffered vaccine reactions, and we will never touch them again. If I were to ever get a vaccine again, it would likely kill me, and it’s truly amazing the last one did not damage me more than it did. (fever of 106 degrees, among other issues).

  4. A very close friend of mine had a perfectly healthy, beautiful baby girl until she had her “shots”. She is now very mentally slow and must be watched constantly so that she does not hurt herself. She has been shoved into the public (gov’t run) school system and will be pushed from grade to grade. Truly tragic. // As for alcohol and this diet, I will have to research that one out. I do know we digest alcohol differently. // Thank you Jack for these two shows. As for yesterday, thanks for the wake up call that weight loss starts in the gray matter between our ears. We are in control of what goes in our mouth. My ‘cheat’ days and day out with friends will be altered a great deal. My gluten reactions can be very severe and I am eating poison. I would not sit down to a bowl of Drano soup, now would I? And that is how I must look at the foods I cannot have and stop the pity party of not being able to eat certain things.

    • Terribly sad. My gosh. 🙁 Unfortunately this goes on quite a bit. We all need to drop our arms, release from these systems, turn our backs and walk away. Stop feeding all this mess. Credit. Medical. The processed food industry. Meds. Etcetera etc etc etc etc. Easier said than done but it CAN be done!

  5. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this concept, not there yet.
    I know a guy who lost much on the Atkins diet, but got very ill at the end, liver problems I think, his dr said it was a result of the Atkins diet.
    My husband is diabetic. I do know before he was diagnosed he lost 20 lbs between Thanksgiving and Christmas eating everything in sight, he was not overweight at this time. Friends asked what kind of a diet he was on. As far as we could tell most of his weight loss was muscle which is not the kind you want to loss. Diabetes runs in his family whether it is genetic or lifestyle. His sugar levels bounce around and sometimes has no relation to his diet and exercise that day. Generally, exercise helps most. Fried foods seem to make it much worse the next day. His aunt gives herself 5 shots a day and stays on a strict diet according to her dr and can still have her glucose levels drop so low she passes out and up in the 400+ same day.
    My husband’s dr’s prescribe him too many meds and keep upping the insulin dosage. The higher the dose, the more weight he gains, the hungrier he is.
    I question traditional medicine and how they deal with diabetes. He has looked at a raw food diet which several claim cure diabetes, says he is not a rabbit and won’t eat like that.
    I believe less processed carbs are key to many health issues. Still trying to understand the mechanics of all this.

  6. I am so glad my mom was smart enough back in the seventies and choose not to vaccinate her kids. 6 healthy kids with zero health issues.

  7. Great podcast with jack sperko, will be checking your books out..thanks Gregg for coming on jacks show

  8. Did anyone understand the carb threashold that equates to 18 microgramsperdeciliter ? do sugar alcohols count as carbs ? Anyone heard of Dr. Joseph Hickey and his book ” Cholesterol Phobeia ?

  9. A question … can I put on weight with a paleo diet. I’m fit but skinny (6ft2 and 143 pounds). Also, can you trust a man who doesn’t like beer? 😉

  10. The mention of modern GMO corn and soy blended products by you Jack and the good doc was really excellent thank you. In addition to the warning about taking it slowly into low carb diet, as they get higher protein while trying to not flood our system with toxins was deeply important. Their will be many Americans (and others on the industrial Western diet) in a SHTF period who will be very ill as the limitations of choices sets in. Many of us are loaded with toxins which will be released. I have nearly nothing of wheat, corn or soy in my home stock.

  11. Great episode! Very informative. Quick question for Dr. Ellis (or Jack if he’s reasearched it):

    How long after starting a fast does it take to switch to fat-burning mode?

  12. This was a thought provoking podcast. I enjoy your passionate exploratory nature and your willingness to veer into highly controversial territories. This subject needs to be extensively researched by parties who are not bought and paid for.

    I don’t think this one interview or any one study can bring closure to the subject of dieting and nutrition. There are 100’s of diets that claim to have science based philosophies and proven results. This topic is bit similar to religion, everyone claims theirs works and that’s the bottom line.

    This is an extremely confusing, complex, and time consuming issue. I think most people will either commit to or reject most diets without an extensive understanding of what they’re getting into. So most people will just go with the choice of those who have influence on them.

    I also suspect that those who may completely disagree are choosing to leave this topic alone because the “Truth” or “Facts” are not self evident. There are some apparent contradictions in the manner in which in other areas of interest we cite studies and scientist that may be bought and paid and we take there articles & results and move forward with our analysis without any extensive research. And with this topic we are selectively choosing to avoid or downplay data that may contradict the belief we are attached to. It may be that some of those studies aren’t doctored and others they release are. I think one of the biggest mistakes lay people and scientist make is confirmation bias or approaching a situation with a conclusion in mind instead of just following the evidence and data. Yes a working hypothesis is useful but it’s just an educated guess. You can conduct experiments without convictions and just focusing on observations and then drawing conclusions like the “Grounded Theory” approach opposed to the traditional scientific method approach.

    The real question then becomes ” HOW CAN WE(the average individual) DISTINGUISH WHICH STUDY IS DOCTORED OR NOT? especially when they can slip their results pass their specialized peers. I think they need to provide video, audio, and any other documentation of their studies and allow anyone to review it.

    I am personally willing to drop any of my beliefs if shown clear and understandable reasons and evidence. I am not saying that you (Jack) or Dr. Ellis haven’t presented any it’s just that I need to process it and draw a well researched conclusion.

  13. Maybe I missed it in the Podcast or its in the Dr.’s book, book but I didn’t hear anything about the functioning of enzymes in the correct bonding of sugars to proteins (glycosylation). I’m no Dr. or biochemist, just a cursory inspection of the subject raised a small flag that there’s more to this story than just ingesting/digesting carbohydrates being automatically bad.

    • Cool. I hope he also covers why alcohol dodges the carb problem because he wasn’t very clear on the science during the podcast; just stating it’s fine even good. I don’t get it since as a compound, alcohol is a carbohydrate if by carb we mean neutral compound of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen.

      • Question for Jack, I couldn’t reply to your response to Vettezuki…Please man do not take this wrong man I’m just trying to gain as much understanding as possible without doing the experiments myself….1st ? Where can I find information about the conversion of alcohol to sugar that is in a science journal or a study that analysis is drawn from, not just in someone’s book? 2nd? Do you think Dr. Ellis answered the questions to the best of his abilities?

        • @BakersfieldBrian,

          Best of his abilities? Huh, well if anything was left out you can put that on me for not asking to go deeper but honestly questions for a follow up was the plan all along.

          On the alcohol see the answer by @Vettezuki below

    • @Vettezuki

      I can help a bit on the alcohol stuff.

      1. First the body will eliminate and not even burn about 20% of the calories from alcohol. This is not calories in the drink but pure alcohol calories. Hence my clarification in the show about beer, like say a Sam Adams Cream Stout with over 30 carbs, a guilty pleasure but not a daily drinker, that is basically as bad as a coke.

      2. Secondly the body doesn’t convert alcohol into sugar, it just doesn’t. Alcohol has almost no effect on blood sugar levels, the calories are processed and burned before any other available calories. It is like gas on a fire, well in the right environment. If your other calories are mostly fat and to a lesser degree protein they kind of just sit wait to go next. Now if you combine high carbs with alcohol the body burns the alcohol and does you know what with the carbs, converts to fat and stores.

      There is more to it then that, I will have Dr. Ellis go deeper into it on his next appearance.

  14. I just want to say that in my experience, I’ve known many vegetarians and have been one myself for 8 years as a kid and 8 years as an adult. It didn’t work for me. However, I have friends that are extremely healthy vegetarians and friends who are not very healthy vegetarians. The ones that are not healthy look like I did. Pale and weak. The ones that are very healthy have perfect skin and are all athletic (yoga). Don’t discount yoga, it’s very tough to do right.

    I’m tired of people making blanket statements about vegetarianism. It’s VERY apparent that some people do very well as vegetarians.

    Now, I’ve been following the blood type diet for 8 years now and am an ‘0’ blood type. When I eat grass-fed beef or lamb, I feel great. When I eat wheat I feel terrible. When I eat spelt, I feel fine. When I eat white potatoes, I feel bad. When I drink coffee I have sugar crashes. I’ve found that it’s all in the book.

    All of my healthy friends who are vegetarians are, bar none, type A’s! The ones that look bad, if they know their blood types are either ‘0’ or ‘b’. If you read the Blood Type diet and actually take the time to read the science behind it, and yes, there’s plenty of science based in empirical data, 40 years of observation and laboratory work you’ll see that it makes perfect sense. All of the blood types are nothing more than the blood defending itself from the drastic changes in diet that we’ve had over our development as a species. It’s happened over a looong period of time.

    I have a pharmacist that I’ve been going to since the ’80s. His name is Dr. Gilber Weise. He does both natural dietary healing and western medicine. He has two halfs of his office. The Natural Food Shoppe and his regular pharmacy. He works miracles for getting people off of pharmaceuticals and back to health through diet and natural supplements. He “doesn’t believe” in the Blood Type diet. He’s told me that he’s a type A. He’s a vegetarian all of his life. He’s 77 and runs the local river run every year with outstanding times. Beats young people.

    Dr. Gabriel Cousins has a program that works miracles for people who can take vegetarianism. The others drop out.

    Dr. Atkins has a program that works for type o’s. The others drop out.

    Paleo works for predominantly type o’s and the others drop out.

    Dr. Ellis has even said that there’s a large group of people that drop out of his program.

    I make raw, pressed juices for people and have found that people drop out of my program. I’ve since tailored my drink recipes to people’s blood type and haven’t had a drop out in a while.

    So, the blood type diet explains to me why there are so many healthy, happy life-long vegetarians in my life and why I and others can eat lots of meat and be perfectly happy.

    Let’s not call other Doctors liars just because they have a program that doesn’t fit into our dietary religions.

    I’m prepping right for my blood type!

      • How do you figure that? The statement about there being nothing in the science journals about it makes me laugh because there are SOO many well researched doctors who’s papers are curiously absent from the medical and scientific journals. These journals are for those who “play the game”.

        Now, check out Arpad Pusztai. He’s a GMO fighter hero. He’s also one of the research scientists that pioneered lectin research. This is the research that D’Adamo has based his half of the book’s research on. D’Adamo’s father actually developed the other half over 30 years of trial and error diet planning at a hospital.

        Check it out. Also, the Weston Price Foundation is another place to check out. They agree with Paleo as far as I can tell almost 100%.

        I don’t want to beat a dead horse, but I always do informal surveys of people when they know their blood types. I ask them to list their favorite foods and foods that they don’t like. The results are definitely around 90% accurate with the Blood Type book.

        Love your stuff. Keep it up!

        • Hey Alex I truly understand your conspiratorial paranoia of the scientific approval process ( I do think skepticism is healthy) as a former conspiracy theorist trust me I get ya. I would bet my last dollar that they are some principles that you live by that are based on studies that came out of those scientific studies and journals you scrutinize. I think if this was 20 years ago when the internet age wasn’t so prevalent it was a lot easier to hide the truth and facts.

          The truth is they are 19 year college kids who have papers in those journals. Its a lot harder to hide the scientific truth with all the competition in our country and other countries who want to beat us to the punch.

          You have to understand there is so much quackery pseudoscience (99% of alternative health movement)out there that there has to be some form of testable, verifiable, repeatable experiments done by a third party.

        • @BakersfieldBrian

          Well, the conspiracies that I talk about are very well documented. The sad thing is, most people won’t believe the evidence because they believe in the system that is pulling the conspiracies. You’ll never see in the “news” anything about it. Scientific papers just disappear. Actual published books exist and yet their entries in the library of congress just disappear. The definitions of words drastically change over time in webster’s dictionary.

          It’s pretty amazing what our world is made of the further down the rabbit hole you go down.

          From what I know, the natural cures are far more effective than the scientifically proven methods. Anything that’s scientifically proven these days makes someone gobs of money and isn’t truly effective. There isn’t any motivation to cure anything since that puts you out of business. However, you are motivated to marginalize and obscure the real cures and declare them unscientific despite the results.

          Look up the Gerson Therapy and Burzynski (play now on Nertflix right now). Both of these are very well documented and very effective cancer therapies that you’ll never hear about…

  15. In response to hearing the latest “truth” about diet or exercise my dad often says, “The questions never change, only the answers.” The question, “What is the best way to eat?” will have different answers depending on who you ask.

    Only one person can answer the question, “What will I eat today?” That person is me.

    • I’d say the best way to eat is just to eat food without a label! Grow as much of your own food and eat it! Try not to over cook it. Eat as much of it raw as you can. Studies from the 50s showed eating 52% of your food raw greatly reduced chronic disease.

    • Man I totally agree, that wasn’t the only thing Dr. Ellis was concerned with though….It just doesn’t seem like he is used to explaining things thoroughly as if we (or Jack when he was asking him questions) should just take his word for it on faith……he did refer to some older studies that he CLAIMS recent researchers didn’t look into, either purposely ignoring it or just indirectly not knowing how to conduct proper research(that is possible)…….. There are other options that are also possible like Dr. Ellis misinterpreting the implications of those studies…. another possibility could be that those studies could also be outdated since they were performed so long ago when our technology wasn’t as advanced and now modern studies render those studies moot……

      ONCE AGAIN A COUPLE DOCTORS OR COUPLE BOOKS (Robb Wolf included) CAN NOT PUT THIS SUBJECT TO BED there is science to back up every diet now a days and they all make you lose WEIGHT if you stick to them….so paleo works for Jack , and Jenny Craig Works for Kristi Alley and vegan works for Mac Danzig UFC fighter….Testimonies are useless to me at this point…..this subject is becoming redundant, veering off the course of survival

      By the way I like the way you (Rorschach) cited your post with a really great source ( and not expect viewers to automatically believe you when you state a claim

  16. Hi

    Great show! I have a number of questions that I would hope Dr Greg Ellis next time he’s on could address. I have read the Paleio diet and the book states no diary and no / little saturated fats as wild meat is lean yet Greg was saying he eats whipped cream for breakfast(which breaks both these “rules”). Jack could you let me know is the paleio diet out of step with Gregs and your practice or am I missing something?

    Secondly I would be keen to hear Dr Gregs views on fasting as I would expect periods of no food would be consistent with a hunter gathers lifestyle

    Lastly I would also like to understand how many meals a day Dr Greg Ellis thinks is the optimum number. For Example a lion eats on average every 3-4 days.

    I have also just looked into apes and their eating habits and can see that all are either herbivores or omnivores and the omnivores eat only a small amount of meat as compared to vegetable matter (obviously none are eating wheat or cooked potatoes) but it seems to indicate that we would be more likely to eat a small amount of meat with much much larger volume of green vegetables and fruits.

    Comments appreciated


    • Paul,

      I agree with you. If you look at the nutrition profile of leafy greens, the chlorophyll is one molecule away from hemoglobin (our blood) and the protein profile hovers around 7%. This protein is very bio available and surpasses the 4% that we are supposed to be able to live on comfortably. If you look at the meat produced in this country, it’s fed corn and grains that are factory farmed and are calorie rich and nutrient deficient. The animals get huge and are ready to die by the time they are butchered. The meat is mostly carbs and if you cook it, you loose on average 50% of the protein since protein isn’t heat tolerant.

      Your best bet is to find a local paddock-shift, grass-fed (natural perennial grasses), organic source of food. In Jacksonville, FL we have a local source and I’m very happy for it! Cook this meat very little and you can live off of VERY LITTLE.

      Green leafy vegetables and meat is a perfect food source for, in my opinion, Type ‘0’ blood people.

      I know of some raw vegans who are body builders and their diets consist of 70% green leafy vegetables and 30% fruit. Check out Dr. Doug Graham and

      I personally know a woman who has been a raw vegan for 11 years now and is in phenomenal shape.

      My point is, paleo is awesome to me, but it just doesn’t discount anyone else’s studies. I just can’t take it when someone calls another researcher a liar without backing up his info.

  17. I just want to throw this out here as a general point. Cognitive biases can lead you down all kinds of crazy paths. No one. I mean NO ONE is immune. Cognitive biases too are emergent phenomena from our evolutionary biology. It is basically impossible to be purely and dispassionately rational. But questions properly answered by critical thinking require that we always make our best effort to eliminate bias, or we’ll be forever mired in a kind confusion. The sad thing is most people still bash their head in on correlation vs. causation, never mind the more complex and subtle.

    This is just a neat little list on Wiki. You can jump off from here to get serious if you want.

  18. Just goes to show you – if you look at everything with a hammer, everything starts looking like nails… We had the regular nutjob scientist on today complete with straw men arguments, declaring other scientists’ data as fabricated, the scary thing (in this case glycation) that will kill you if you don’t eat his way, and guesses (which he states as fact) about why his diet works on certain things. This guy is no better than the chelation/acidic protein people and the raw diet people with their contrived theories.

    Of course if you eat less carbs you will lose weight, especially the processed carbs like white grains and sugar. If that is your goal, then this diet will work for you. That doesn’t mean that this diet is healthy once you reach your ideal weight. Early man ate tons of fruit. Primates today consume tons of it.

    I just hope this answered everyone’s questions so it doesn’t come up again. I can understand you providing survival information, which is helpful under any regard. Providing health advice is dangerous and, for your sake, I hope you are right because you could be leading thousands marching to their death if you are very wrong.

    • @Tim I could write a book on what is wrong with your last comment, but I don’t have the time to bother.

      Believe what you want.

  19. Dr.Ellis
    I see that your caloric intake on an average day is low. Is there any danger with such a low calorie intake , other than possible hunger? Your daily regiment seemed low to me (ie: cream , 1/2 sandwhich , cream ).
    Thanking you in advance,

    • Not to speak to much for Gregg but, if he is drinking 4oz of cream quite a few times a day that is a lot of calories. Heavy cream is about 50 calories a teaspoon and there are about 6 teaspoons to a fluid ounce, so that is 300 calories and ounce multiply by 4 and you are looking at 1200 calories if I have my numbers right, twice a day that is 2400 calories.

      Gregg also has quite a bit of wine on a daily basis from what I know.

    • Thank you for taking the time to answer.
      I Did some calculations , but with Dr. ellis we really don’t know quantity.
      A half pint is 16 T (tablespoons) 8oz at 52 calories per T (HEAVY whiping cream) (Bowes Food values 16th) . WOW 832 calories ! I see where the energy comes from. Thanks for sheding the light on my Question.