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The personal blog of Peter Attia, M.D.

Update on the Ancestral Health Symposium and NuSI

Update on the Ancestral Health Symposium and NuSI

As I write this I’m on a bumpy plane ride back from Boston where I was privileged to speak and participate at this year’s Ancestral Health Symposium at Harvard.  I had initially planned to speak about the Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI), the non-profit Gary Taubes and I founded earlier this year. However, since we are not officially launching NuSI until September, Gary and I chose to speak about other topics.

My talk, on cholesterol, was recorded and will be available for viewing once the conference organizers have an opportunity to merge the video content with slides.  As soon as it’s ready, I’ll be sure to link to it.  For those lacking the patience to read through 9 parts of The Straight Dope on Cholesterol (and one more part I plan to write in wrapping up the series), this 40 minute talk is a good summary of the major points. Of course, as is always the case, the 60 minutes or so of after-the-talk Q&A was where the real gems came out.

So how was the AHS?

Where to begin? I can’t say there was only one single highlight for me.  There were really many great moments.  It was wonderful to finally meet in person a number of folks I’ve been following online – Chris Kresser, Andreas Eenfeldt, Richard Feinman, Stephan Guyenet, Ron Rosedale, Jimmy Moore, Elizabeth Thiele, Ben Greenfield, and James O’Keefe – just to name a few.  It was also great to see my friends like Mark Sisson and Robb Wolf who I don’t get to see often enough.  Best of all, I was able to connect with many people who want to be involved in NuSI’s mission.

I really learned a lot, and in the coming months (or year, given how much is going on) I’ll be translating what I’ve learned into exciting and helpful posts to augment what these other experts are studying.  If ever there is an experience to humble you, it’s realizing how much knowledge is out there and how none of us can ever stop learning.  My obsession for learning everything partly explains why I haven’t been to a movie since 2006, the last time my wife dragged me to one kicking and screaming.  My Meyers-Briggs profile also explains this (any guesses on what I am?).

Some of the intriguing topics I’m excited to be learning more about, (which I want to eventually bring to you), include: the role of the brain in metabolism; the perils of too much or too little iron; the possible harm of exercising as much as I do; the role of insulin signaling in cancer; and the role of nutrition in cognition.

The other wonderful highlight for me was getting to meet a few of you in person.  I can’t tell you how humbled I am to meet in person the people who actually read this blog.  You exist in person!  Thank you for introducing yourselves to me.

Finally, and enjoyably, I was introduced to the best beef jerky, pemmican, pure cacao, and other fantastic food, which I look forward to telling you more about in the near future.

Update on NuSI

As I mentioned above, and have alluded to in several previous posts, Gary Taubes and I co-founded the Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI) earlier this year, and in April I took on full-time responsibility as the President.  NuSI is a non-profit organization with the mission of reducing the economic and social cost of obesity and its related diseases by bringing, through facilitation and funding, the most rigorous experimental science to the field of nutrition, just as such research exists in other fields of science.

In early September, when we formally and publicly launch NuSI, I will say much more about this.  However, to give you a quick idea what we’re ultimately hoping to achieve, imagine a kind of Manhattan Project of Nutrition. In one concerted, directed, well-funded effort, the best scientists in the field — all independent, all suitably skeptical — will work together to generate the evidence necessary to put to rest, one way or the other, all the major and many of the minor controversies in nutrition research.

The best part?  We’ll do it for less than the cost of developing just one drug in the United States.

Gary and I have been working at breakneck pace to build a world-class team at NuSI, including our Board of Directors, Scientific Advisory Board, Board of Advisors, scientific consortium, and full-time staff.  I can’t wait until we can formally introduce you to our team and collaborators.

We have already hired several positions within NuSI through standard recruiting channels and referrals, but there is one position, in particular, Gary and I thought might be worth bringing to the attention of our readers – our Research Associate. We’ve already received a few dozen tremendous applications from individuals with great credentials, but we’re wondering if one critical attribute may be missing or under-represented in our applicants so far. Beyond the tangible skills necessary for this particular role – outlined in the downloadable job posting (below) – this role requires an almost maniacal obsession with nutrition science and a passion for answering the kinds of questions we’ve all been debating in print and in our blogs.  We think there’s a reasonable chance that our future Research Associate is one of you out there reading this right now.

For the full list of job responsibilities and requirements, please download the job posting, which also explains exactly how to apply.  Please do not send any of the application materials to me or Gary directly. You can consider this the first test of the ability to follow simple instructions.

This position will prove to be both extremely challenging and highly rewarding.  We think that we have the opportunity with this organization to change the world, and that the odds are good that we can pull it off. Such opportunities don’t come along frequently in life. We’ve already enlisted some of the best scientists in nutrition and obesity research to design and conduct the studies we’ll be funding, and you’ll get the opportunity to support them day in and day out.

One very important disclosure: This role will make the proverbial ‘drinking from a fire hose’ seem manageable.  I would describe this role as more of a “calling” than a “job” which, in reality, is true of all of our roles at NuSI.  If you’re interested, and I haven’t scared you off yet, please consider applying for this role, if you feel you meet the requirements.

Thank you, and I’m looking forward to sharing the progress of NuSI with all of you.


About the Author:

Peter Attia, M.D., is a physician in private practice in NYC and CA. His practice focuses on longevity and healthspan. His clinical interests are nutrition, lipidology, endocrinology, and a few other cool things.


  1. Richard Hanks  August 15, 2012

    ESTP or ENTJ?

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Nope. Let’s see if anyone else guesses correctly. I’ll give you this, though. I am a T, not F.

    • greensleeves  August 15, 2012

      ISTJ – so clear to those of us who are INFJ. The S is your drive to deal with data, to be evidence-based with facts from the real world.

      “You take things in via your five senses in a literal, concrete fashion. Your secondary mode is external, where you deal with things rationally and logically.

      ISTJs have a strongly-felt internal sense of duty, which lends them a serious air and the motivation to follow through on tasks. Organized and methodical in their approach, they can generally succeed at any task which they undertake. “

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Nice analysis!

    • Katherine Morrison  August 15, 2012

      Definitely, definitely not an ESTP.

    • bananabender  July 12, 2015

      The MBTI is pure unadulterated hogwash. It has been comprehensively discredited by numerous studies dating back to the 1970s. [Approximately 50% of subjects have a different type when retested.]

  2. Dorian  August 15, 2012


    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Interesting… I vs. E, but not there yet, Dorian.

  3. Shana  August 15, 2012


  4. Allison  August 15, 2012

    If I lived in San Diego, I would apply for that job in a HEARTBEAT! I am currently a research nurse, after time as a pediatric cardiac intensive care unit nurse, and my passion for nutrition is making me think I am going to need to go back to school again.


    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      You got it! I’m an “I” who can act like an “E” when I need to (though it drains me). Very strong “S” who works very hard at being more “N-like.” Off-the scale “T” and “J.”

  5. Jason Smythe  August 15, 2012

    You are totally an INTJ.

  6. Dana  August 15, 2012


  7. Pete  August 15, 2012

    Go to be ESTJ. Sounds like a great meeting Peter. Have to get it on my calendar for next year. Safe travels,

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Hoping it’s in SF next year. ISTJ…

  8. Pete  August 15, 2012

    Ahhhhh, so close.

  9. Mike  August 15, 2012


    I’m curious as to your views on whether the carb-insulin-fat hypothesis is dead and discredited in the research community. Supposedly there is now “consensus” on this and no serious researchers take this hypothesis seriously. At least two of the people you mention as having met at the AHS are on the record as advocating this view. If the carb hypothesis is discredited, what hypotheses will NuSI be testing? If Gary’s alternative hypothesis is still alive and kicking, will you be offering any kind of rebuttal or defense? I’ve been surprised by your silence in this area, and was wondering if it had anything to do with the change from the name of your previous website, “War on Insulin.”

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Mike, there is not a consensus around this view, though certainly many people do not believe this hypothesis, including some people I respect and learn from. Remember, science is not religion or politics where there are no “right” answers. Debate in science often degrades to this, but we should never lose sight of the fact that these hypotheses are testable. When we launch NuSI one of the really exciting things on the website will be a comprehensive review of every study testing this hypothesis — over the past 80 years — which have failed to resolve this issue. I think folks willing to read through this will be pleased with the lengths we’ve gone to to review the “prior art” so to speak. Regardless of ones views today, this question is too important to be left unanswered or poorly addressed. So while I still believe the carb-insulin-fat hypothesis is the most compelling “first order term,” it’s by no means the only issue and many factors need to be addressed. The key, is addressing them in way they have not been addressed to date. Among other things, this is exactly the sort of science NuSI exists to fund.

    • John Lushefski  August 17, 2012


      I think there is unfortunately a high amount of deception regarding criticisms of the “CIH.” Despite accurate showings of the lack of utility or purpose of arguing about “CICO,” too many people still fail to understand. Every alternate hypothesis of which I’m aware (food reward, willpowere, etc) implies there is some “calorie threshhold” inherent to each person. To them, when one consumes calories above this [threshhold], fat storage “just happens.”

      Calories are merely *facilitative,* and this factors in poor willpower, food “addictions,” etc. Note the specific language used by someone (I have to call him out) like Guyenet. He always uses “CIH” instead of “insulin hypothesis,” and he keeps the argument centered on Taubes’ apparent mistakes. Any minor flaw is generalized in an attempt to persuade with, “See, ‘they’ are wrong, so trust me.”

      There is an avoidance of investigation into the physiology of fat storage because doing so would imply calories per se are not the correct focus. Counter examples like JNK-/-, LIRKO, etc are carefully chosen, because they allow for tricky strawmen that fool non-critical thinkers and those ignorant to certain physiology. It is the “Thank You for Smoking” argument strategy, with an interest not in developing knowledge, but in gaining followers.

      Try searching out interventions that reduce adipocyte insulin sensitivity or interventions that inhibit insulin secretion; these will show reduced fat storage. Glutamine solution and oxidized lipid consumption are two clear examples. The VMH damaged FIRKO mouse is also supportive. Studies with diazoxide annd octreotide are inconsistent, but so are their effects.

      I’m not quite sure why most do not make their stances clear. I guess it is because of reputation or fear of being an “ancestral outcast,” since the insulin hypothesis is no longer fashionable. Lots of them quickly jumped on Guyenet’s bandwagon since he has traditionally been careful and conservative with his ideas, but it may come back to bite them in the ass–maybe not though, since correctness doesn’t always lead to acceptance: There seems to be a sort of groupthink and avoidance of conflict among many bloggers.

  10. Sue  August 15, 2012

    ISTJ, since they are Agents of Change.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Is that true? If so, wow! Yes, I’m ISTJ.

  11. Daniel Kirsner  August 15, 2012

    Is Taubes an INTP?

    Certain or suspected types of some AHSers: Denise Minger (INTJ), John Durant (ENTP), Emily Deans (INTP), Chris Masterjohn (INTP), Mark Sisson (INFJ), Richard Nikoley (ENTJ), Jimmy Moore (ESFJ)…

    I know of only one other possible AHS ISTJ, but she denies that’s her type.

    My ISTJ grandfather died recently–google “Joseph B. Kirsner”.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Hmmm. If I had to guess, Gary would be INTP, yes. For the others, I don’t know. That would be a fun exercise.

  12. Katie  August 15, 2012

    I’m an ISFJ – so close! Congrats on your hard work paying off – you’ve accomplished something tremendous in a very short time. I hope you find an excellent research assistant.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Ahhh…the female version of Peter Attia. Thanks so much for the kind words.

  13. George Henderson  August 15, 2012

    The beri beri weight loss diet; fortification for the “fattening carbohydrate” theory of obesity.


    Considering the possible effects of vitamin fortification of carbohydrates strengthens the carbohydrate-insulin hypothesis.

    Good to see all those names in one place. You guys are the new rock stars.
    Stephan Guyenet’s paper on dairy fat even made the prime-time news in New Zealand (Monday, Auguat 13th, TV1 Close Up). The times they are (hopefully) a’changing.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Very interesting. I’m talking with Stephan next week and look forward to hearing his ideas.

  14. Trisha Eldridge Gilkerson  August 15, 2012

    Gotta be ISTJ… I scrolled past the other guesses. Ha, but I suppose I should go back and see if anyone else chose right 🙂

    Oh, can’t wait to read the next cholesterol post!

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Yup! You got it. Why so obvious?

  15. Trisha Eldridge Gilkerson  August 15, 2012

    I don’t know, maybe because I’m ISTJ and some of the tendencies I recognize in myself you’ve discussed about yourself in your blog. Or maybe just because I’m so darn smart! ha! just kidding 🙂

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Nice! That’s not a common phenotype in women, is it?

  16. Trisha Eldridge Gilkerson  August 15, 2012

    I would guess not. I’ve taught several classes and had students take the Meyers Briggs and I haven’t ever had another female come up ISTJ. Guess I’m weird. Since college I’ve gone from a strong I to a wishy-washy I and I think my T that was strong before only continues in that direction.

  17. David Nelsen  August 15, 2012

    I think this is just another data point, in a long line of data points that proves your wife is destined for Sainthood. My low carb laugh of the week – a friend at work is on a medically supervised diet (low carb, low calorie variety). The doctor has a handbook for the patients. It says not to eat more than 2 egg yolks per week as it will kick you out of ketosis! Also – you don’t want more than 2 because egg yolks are high in cholesterol! The diet is effective, but I would think the Dr. would know better. It boggles the mind.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Wait, which data point? Did I reveal something else in the post that proves my wife is a Saint?

    • David Nelsen  August 15, 2012

      Only 1 movie since 2006! Was that not obvious? I think like Saul/Paul on the road to Damascus you need the scales to fall from your eyes. 🙂 There is an old saying – If momma ain’t happy, aint nobody happy.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Don’t worry, David. My wife still goes to movies…just without me.

  18. Ben Greenfield  August 15, 2012

    Pretty friggin’ awesome to meet you too Peter. You didn’t go out of keto with that cacao, did you? I’ll check out this job posting for sure, and be in touch soon to talk about your fat fueled riding.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      No, dude! That pure cacao (which you saw me mainlining all week) was 100% pure. Virtually all fat! Talk soon.

  19. Bob West  August 15, 2012

    Congratulations, Peter, on your progress with NuSI, and with the connections you are making with other like-minded people in the field.

    I’m not going to make a guess about your Meyers-Briggs profile; I assume that people who understand that framework have already gotten it better than I would.

    I would say, informally: intelligent and caring, somewhat obsessive about detail, committed to accuracy and truth, with some skepticism and a lot of flexibility, and not personally rigid. Not a bad profile, however it is formalized.

    The possibility of bringing scientific rigor to nutritional research is incredibly exciting. There’s a lot of clash of opinions in nutrition, largely because there’s such a lack of definitive data and accurate interpretations. But I think that just about everybody would welcome some actual experimental clarity — and yes, that certainly includes representatives of all the different positions. (Maybe not all representatives…. ahem…. but certainly some from all the different points of view.)

    So, by all means feel supported by the many people who read your blog and who are with you on this. Here’s to the success of NuSI and to your contributions via this blog…. All highly appreciated, and very valuable.


    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Bob, I wish I could say I was everything you described! I can say this, though. I work hard at correcting my deficits to try to be that person one day…before it’s too late. Thank you so much for your continued support!

  20. Ellen  August 15, 2012

    Okay, I’ll have finished my Master’s degree in Nutrition in two years, and then I’m going to show up at NuSI’s door. By then, my websites should be generating enough income that I’ll be able to do an internship, it you’ll have me. 🙂 And if your research assistant needs an assistant, count me in! Best of luck in your search.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Ellen, that’s the kind of long-term planning and commitment we love to see!

  21. Lisa  August 15, 2012

    Denise Minger seems like she would be perfect for your open job position. I enjoyed your talk at AHS after having followed your blog for quite some time and I’m excited to see what NuSi brings to the future.

  22. karen  August 15, 2012

    Amazing and congratulations to you and Gary on NuSI, we are attempting similar in South Africa (on a much smaller scale). Always very inspiring to read your blog and see how passionate you are. Thank you! Karen

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Great. Hopefully there will be ways to overlap.

  23. Rose  August 15, 2012

    I nominate Denise Minger for the position of Research Assistant 😉

  24. Alexandria Cotie  August 15, 2012

    I can’t wait till your team is complete and you get on changing the world! A friend asked me “if you could win any award, what would it be and why?” I said it would be a nobel peace prize for exactly what you’re doing! Hopefully I’ll be able to attend one of these conferences you speak at/attend, and thank you in person for the changes you’ll help to make. Grats!

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Hopefully they will expand the AHS next year. This year it sold out in 3 days! It really needs to be about 5 times the size it is.

  25. Daniel Kirsner  August 15, 2012

    While I’m not sure if Denise Minger is available; I do agree that if interested she’d be a wonderful fit for the job. My one quibble is therefore with your list of “Requirements.” Denise has a measly B.A. in English, if the “Requirements” are, in fact, required, you’ve just eliminated a stellar candidate from the running before she could even apply.

    My suggestion to you, Peter, from my INFP perspective to your ISTJ mindset, is to change the wording a bit so that the autodidact geniuses like Denise feel welcome to contact you.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      In my experience, if someone is particularly interested and appropriately obsessed with a role, despite on-paper “limitations,” they will make a case, and it will be heard. I’d prefer to keep it as is. If someone out there doesn’t meet the “requirements,” is appropriately suitable, but doesn’t contact us, they may lack some of the intangible skills we’re looking for…

  26. AVIV  August 15, 2012

    It was great meeting you in person Peter.
    The symposium was awesome, hope to see you there next year.
    Good luck with NuSI, sounds like things are moving and it’s exciting buddy.


    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Aviv, it was wonderful to meet you in person. Thank you for introducing yourself. See you at AHS next year!

  27. Scott Pryde  August 15, 2012

    Obviously, NuSI has a lot of work to do. Recent studies seem to indicate egg yolk consumption is approximately two-thirds as bad as smoking in regards to the build up of carotid plaque. Time to go back to my corn and flour…..

    Press on!

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      If ever we need a reminder of why NuSI is necessary. Perfect timing.

    • greensleeves  August 15, 2012

      What a garbage non-study that egg yolk thing is. Take a look at the actual data table. Those who ate the most egg yolks had slightly lower LDL, higher HDL, and lower BMI. Sounds good to me!

      Everyone in that study had already had a “heart event,” – like an ischemic. Many also smoked and had T2D. Confounders anyone?

      If anything that data table suggests egg yolks might be slightly protective – the higher egg yolk folks were older when they had their event, despite the smoking and T2D. So vegan activism aside, I say, eat an extra yolk a week!

  28. Paula  August 15, 2012


    Are you reconsidering the rigors of your excessive, err, I mean exercise intensity? (NOTE: when I was typing ‘exercise’, I spelled it wrong and when I right-clicked to change it without arrow-ing over, it came up with’ excessive’, so I left it!)

    Very best,

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      I am, Paula. More on this in the coming months.

  29. Gary  August 15, 2012

    Peter, I’m wondering how you will deal with the perception that NuSI is biased because you and Gary founded it. I’m sure you will do sound research, but it seems to me that perceptions of bias could be a big issue in having your research accepted by the medical community and the public.

    • Peter Attia  August 16, 2012

      The answer to this very important and inevitable question will be clear when we launch, I believe. Keep in mind, though, NuSI funds research. We (i.e., Peter, Gary) don’t do the research.

  30. Katherine Morrison  August 15, 2012

    INTJ. I haven’t read the whole thread so it may have already been guessed correctly.

    Wish I’d have met you at AHS! We were both pretty busy the whole time. 🙂

    • Katherine Morrison  August 15, 2012

      ISTJ? No way! I am surrounded by ISTJs in the lab and it doesn’t seem like you at all. ISTJs are generally very pro-status quo.

    • Peter Attia  August 15, 2012

      Interesting. I’ve never thought of myself as status quo.

  31. Maryann  August 15, 2012

    Hi Peter, thank you so much for recording your presentation! I can’t wait to see it! Maryann

  32. Ann Gebhart  August 16, 2012

    I have been following your work since adopting a ketogenic diet about eight months ago, and am grateful for every word you have written, and for every minute you have spent sharing your journey and your discoveries. Done with weight loss, I am sticking with the diet because it feels so great and seems to be benefiting me in many ways. I am planning to persist in my low carb ways on an upcoming backpacking trip in the High Sierras, and as you might know, backpacking food tends to be loaded with carbs. I make my own food, so am adapting my recipes, but am wondering if you can share any links to great jerky, pemmican, and cacao, assuming they are commercially available?

    I am looking forward with intense interest to seeing the work you and Gary are doing on NuSI and the video material from the recent convention!

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      I’m really fond of the U.S. Wellness Meats company. They have great products with no added sugar. The problem is that not using preservatives makes it tough for your application. Their pemmican would not work, but jerky might. Nuts and superstarch (generation UCAN) would also be good choices.

    • Perry  September 19, 2012


      I’m curious how your ketogenic backpack trip went. I’ve been trying to stay ketogenic while backpacking…took the meter along on the last trip and found that I was not staying in ketosis. Looking back, I think eating 3-4 oz of nuts a day was too many carbs. For me, breakfast was usually Mtn House freeze dried eggs w ham & peppers ( about 9 gr carb)with some added bacon or cheese. Lunch was typically sausage and cheese with some nuts. Dinners were low carb dehydrated marinara sauce with some added cheese or similar (about 6 gr of carbs). I’m looking for ideas, what did you decide on for food?

  33. Mark  August 16, 2012

    Peter: Great site. Excellent companion to Good Calories, Bad Calories. Excited to hear about progress with NuSi. I think definitively setting the record straight regarding diet and nutrition is one of the most important tasks we face today. Those that understand and appreciate the ideas you and Taubes espouse are precious few. I look forward to the day that is no longer the case and we can eat our bacon and egg yolks in peace without answering the question: “aren’t you worried about your cholesterol and heart disease?”

    Curious aside, is NuSi your only focus now or do you still have a “day job?”

    • Peter Attia  August 16, 2012

      I left my former “day job” in January to focus on NuSI.

  34. Drew Ramsey, MD  August 16, 2012

    Hi Peter – Great posts and I’m excited to see NuSi make some waves. I’ve got to add omega-3 fats and chromium to your list of molecules to research as they both relate to insulin and changes in the modern American diet.

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Drew, omega-3 and omega-6 are *definitely* on the short list. Chromium may need to be a bit low. Has Chris Kresser already written about it?

  35. Todd  August 17, 2012

    Really enjoy your blog, Peter. After years of moving from diet to diet, your blog helped me nail down exactly what I felt I was missing in my nutritional pattern. Tried a lot of things, this just feels right somehow.

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Really great to hear, Todd. Not just because you’ve arrived at something that works, but more so because you’ve had the patience and self-forgiveness to go from diet to diet until you found what worked for the most important person…YOU. I, too, went from diet to diet, including 6 months of vegan, before finding out what worked best for me.

  36. Brian  August 17, 2012


    I’ve been in Ketosis now for 2.5 months. I never really experienced any of the typical side effects, despite plunging right into Ketosis without gradually reducing carbs first. However, lately I have been getting slightly light headed only in the evenings/night time. Do you have any idea if this could be related to the ketosis? I don’t always supplement with sodium, occasionally I’ll do a cup of chicken broth, and I’ve consciously added salt to most of my food now. I never felt like I had to go crazy with the salt because as I said I didn’t experience the common side effects. I take Potassium, Magnesium, B Complex and Vit D supplements. Is it possible that this is a side effect finally catching up to me and that I may now have to increase my sodium intake even more? Or could it be something else? My Activity level hasn’t changed (3-4 days a week of 45-60 min of heavy barbell work, and the occasional sprint). Thanks!


    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      So tough to say, Brian. It takes me hours to troubleshoot these problems with detailed questions and answers. Not really something I’m able to do in this forum.

  37. Jason Smythe  August 17, 2012

    I find it just a teeny bit troubling (and unsettling) to learn that you:

    1. Follow Guyenet online
    2. Plan to speak with Guyenet next week
    3. Look forward to hearing Guyenet’s ideas

    Surely you’re aware of the exceptionally bad blood between Guyenet and Taubes and Guyenet and Dobromylskyj (HyperLipid)? I have read you as neutral up until this point, but, in my opinion, anyone who is pro-Guyenet — to any degree whatsoever — is proportionally anti-Taubes (or more specifically, anti carbohydrate hypothesis).

    Guyenet is really not a particularly pleasant individual. Have you seen the vitriol that he’s heaped upon Guyenet and Dobromylskyj? He just doesn’t seem like the type of person that you would choose to voluntarily associate with.

    I guess I kind of figured, based upon Taubes passing the torch of his readership to you, that you had come to the same conclusions about Guyenet (and his hypothesis) that Taubes and Dobromylskyj have. Are you less critical of Guyenet’s hypothesis than Taubes and Dobromylskyj?

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Jason, I’m certainly aware of the (public) disagreements between Peter, Stephan, and Gary. I don’t know Peter at all, but obviously I know Gary like a brother and I know Stephan a little bit. It’s important to remember the objective…our common goal, personally and collectively, is to improve the quality of science in nutrition so the hundreds of millions of Americans who suffer from bad information can be healthy. We’ve got to get past our differences and move to a place where we’re more interested in finding the truth than being “right.” Any good scientist (or science journalist or blogger) has a hypothesis — what some would even call a bias. This is ok! Someone with no hypothesis doesn’t know where to start.
      To answer your last question, directly, I think Stephan’s idea about food reward and Gary’s (and mine) about the hormonal balance of fat accumulation are NOT mutually exclusive. They can both be working together to lead to obesity and MS. What we need, desperately, is better science — to find out once and for all. It will take a few years and a lot of money, but isn’t worth it?

    • Daniel Kirsner  August 17, 2012

      As MBTI has been brought up in this thread, I thought I’d toss this off: Stephan Guyenet appears to my eye to be an INFJ. In theory–and also based on my experience–an INFJ and an INTP (like Gary) should get along fairly well, once they get to know each other and establish a level of trust. The obstacle, perhaps, is not that Gary and Stephan have different ideas, it’s that Stephan apparently feels offended/slighted by Gary (INFJs are much more sensitive to conflict than INTPs, for whom arguments can often be “fun”). It might be helpful if Gary were to meet one-on-one with Stephan and try to clear the air…

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Daniel, very interesting assessment. One of the reasons I like MBTI is for the reasons you’ve outlined — not only does it help me understand my own strengths and limitations — it helps me understand my interactions with others.

    • Jason Smythe  August 17, 2012


      Thank you so very much for your response. I really, really appreciate it.

      I’m happy to learn that you’re indeed well-informed on the politics.

      I think your diplomatic approach will be beneficial for everyone. There has indeed been far too much emotion and far too many ad hominem attacks between folks. The greater interest is absolutely served by us all getting past the hostility, animosity, and resentment, and focusing on the science. It is my hope that NuSI can be a catalyst for such.

      Peter’s a great guy and I think he — like you — has added a tremendous amount of value over the years. I’d encourage you to perhaps reach out to him and get to know him as well.

    • Craig  August 17, 2012

      This sounds rather cliquish to me – Guynet couldn’t possibly be right because he isn’t one of the cool kids??? I would rather base my diet on evidence, than on loyality to a particular person or group. You can have a disagreeable personality and still have a solid grasp of the facts.

  38. Nancy  August 17, 2012

    Another topic I would like to see addressed in the future: the concept of physiological insulin resistance.

    I have been happily following a low carb, higher fat way of eating for several years now and am overall pleased with the results. But I have noticed that the few times that I have eaten a super high load of carbs, my blood glucose has gone sky high (over 200!) – way higher than it ever had previously. (Although not a diabetic, I test my blood glucose semi-regularly as an aid in seeing how different foods effect me.)

    Doing some internet research has led me to conclude this is due to “physiological insulin resistance” and not something to worry about. But I do not really understand this concept, and why this is benign versus “true” insulin resistance which is not a good thing.

    I’d also like to know more about carb cycling (aka refeeds or carb-ups) – the idea that it can be good to increase your carbs periodically to re-set or shake up your body’s hormonal responses. Is there validity to this or is it just body-builder’s babble? My limited experience with it leads me to believe that there might be something to it. I have paradoxically observed lower fasting blood glucoses and a several pound weight loss, days after I have temporarily INCREASED my carb intake.

    And thank you for your excellent blog! I find it extremely interesting.

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Great questions, Nancy. Thanks for asking. I’d like to address these in subsequent posts, though it will take a while.

  39. Lianda  August 17, 2012

    While I am a believer (Praise the Lard – lol!) of the Paleo Plan (I don’t like calling healthy eating a “diet”), I know that there are limitations. My clients are the ones where even low carbs don’t change their weight, or their blood results: They have low metabolisms (Hashimoto’s or Hypothyroid), Insulin Resistance, or they are just at a STUCK weight point from over-dieting and the yo-yo syndrome.
    Furthermore, there are emotional eaters out there who are stressed to the MAX, who eat despite not being hungry. Their conundrum is caused by the stress & resulting cortisol levels that are increasing their weight, contributing to Sleep Apnea, which increases their weight (increased Ghrelin, lowered Leptin) will not allow them to lose the weight no matter what they do. In my opinion, Stress is the big dog here – and must be discussed as one of the important variables. I’m looking forward to reading more!

    • Peter Attia  August 17, 2012

      Yup, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to this. It really is all about customizing the eating plan to each individual, as it sounds like you’re doing.

  40. Ryan  August 17, 2012

    I’m an ENFP! I love Myers Briggs so fun! I guess there aren’t many ENFP scientists. I was an art major but am in love with all this metabolism science! Anyone miss Kurt Harris?

    • Peter Attia  August 18, 2012

      Wow, Ryan…I don’t know many ENFP’s. That’s cool!

  41. charles grashow  August 18, 2012

    Since you say that LDL-P is most important have you taken a NMR test? If so what is your LDL-P particle number?

    • Peter Attia  August 18, 2012

      Yes, I’ve had multiple NMRs. My LDL-P varies greatly depending on “experiments” I do on myself. Normal value for me is about 1,000 nmol/L. But here’s what I don’t understand…why the entitled tone of your question? Do I own you something, beyond the 30 hours a week I pore into this blog for free? Would it have killed you to ask your question in a polite way? “Hey, Peter, I know you talk about the importance of NMR…have you checked yours? If so, would you be comfortable sharing any of the data with us on the public forum?”

  42. Thomas  August 18, 2012

    With all due respect, if you want mainstream medicine to take this “movement” seriously, why are you promoting an alternative medicine acupuncturist who practices medicine with web cams? Chris Kresser has not serious credentials and is an expert in usurping scientific language to further his alternative medicine practice.

    Acupuncture is a modern updating of a non-scientific system that has been disproven in studies and has no basis in medical reality. Chris Kresser should be challenged on his misguided beliefs publicly and should not be lauded as a key speaker at “Paleo Summits.”

    Two quick points before I go on:

    1) In the past, I thought that it was okay for these people to spread paleo because it works and saves lives. I know have concluded that because pale works (i.e. appears to have a provable underlying scientific basis) it is even more important to reject things that don’t work. The responsibility to seek truth should apply equally to challenging the current scientific consensus or a pre-scientific astrological system of needle pricking reinvented by 20th c. communists to save money treating peasants, while the top cadres received modern Soviet medicine.

    2) I do not believe that practictioners of acupuncture are dishonest, they are just mistaken—they way doctors who bled patients and believed in Galenic medicine were mistaken. Chris Kresser, for example maybe an honest and caring person, but if you dig deeper he believes things that would not out of place in the 15th century.

    Now to look at the underlying claims. Chris Kresser is transparent about his education and links to where he studied acupuncture in what appears to be Japanese based center for alternative medicine. He parlayed this experience into what appears to be an effort to portray himself as a “medical investigator” with a clinical practice. He is very good at appropriating scientific language to promote his beliefs. He also charges a lot for his services as indicated by one reviewer on YELP. http://www.yelp.com/biz/chris-kresser-berkeley

    1) Kresser’s alma mater offers coupon discounts and its faculty is composed mostly with acupuncturists and naturopaths, which I appreciate given the rise in tuition. I did not see anything even similar to the classes I saw my ex-roomate—an MIT Ph.D. and staff member on the NIH–take while at the University of Chicago. Where is the organic chemistry training? http://aimc.edu/

    2) One “paleo” blogger challenged people on the Emily Deans website to find one thing Kresser has written that was wrong. This blogger found about twenty: http://nativeskeptic.blogspot.com/2011/08/skeptic-gets-healthy-dose-of-skepticism.html

    3) Kresser has also performed acupuncture on his pets. http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/animal-acupuncture/ ”Acupuncture points also haven’t been shown to exist in animals (or people, for that matter). In fact, the acupuncture charts devised for animals are inventions of the 20th century, made by “transposing” one of the myriad human charts directly onto animals. That’s one reason why horses have a “gall bladder” meridian (putative channels which connect acupuncture points, which also haven’t been shown to exist), even though they don’t have a gall bladder. But, when it comes to animal acupuncture, there’s apparently no absurdity sufficiently large to cause practitioners any embarrassment.”

    Here are links to analysis on acupuncture that strongly indicate that it does not work any better than a placebo:

    Key Quote: More recent trials have attempted to improve the blinded control of such trials by using acupuncture needles that are contained in an opaque sheath. The acupuncturist depresses a plunger, and neither they nor the patient knows if the needle is actually inserted. The pressure from the sheath itself would conceal any sensation from the needle going in. So far, such studies show no difference between those who received needle insertion and those who did not – supporting the conclusion that acupuncture has no detectable specific health effect.

    Taken as a whole, the pattern of the acupuncture literature follows one with which scientists are very familiar: the more tightly controlled the study the smaller the effect, and the best controlled trials are negative. This pattern is highly predictive of a null-effect – that there is no actual effect from acupuncture.
    The study: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1046/j.1468-2982.2001.00198.x/abstract

    I am also linking back to Urs’ thread on traditional Chinese medicine, which has links to skeptics:

    My conclusion is that the paleo community should end its double standard and stop tolerating quacks just because they say things that some members of the community believes advances their cause. Chris Kresser is poorly trained in science, attended a quack school for his Masters, openly embraces a dubious and disproven health system based on pre-scientific beliefs similar to alchemy, and yet presents himself as a scientific “medical investigator” and skeptic. I do not believe in “noble lies” that accept pseudoscience just to advance a cause. Chris Kresser may be a convincing public speaker, but that should not make him a public representative of what should be a scientifically based effort to promote evolutionary approaches to nutrition capable of taking on the Harvard School of Nutrition.

    He does, however, charge 250 dollars an hour…good money for a man who graduated from an alternative medicine nonsensical academy that offers discounts on its web page and does not have any serious chemistry or biology classes.

    • JR  August 18, 2012

      Vendetta much? Maybe this isn’t the place for you to flog your agenda of discrediting a practitioner who resides on an entirely separate web site?

    • Colleen  August 25, 2012

      I like the big tent approach myself. I applaud Kresser for his business sense, and all his efforts on his website/blog/podcasts. If it was so simple to find a doctor interested in improving health thru diet, Kresser would have no market (like my daughter’s pediatrician pushing lots of grains or my OB who mentioned nothing about diet during pregnancy) . Regardless of his degree, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him to others on certain topics where I find him to be quite knowledgeable. If readers do not know who he is, I recommend checking out his podcast at ChrisKresser.com.

    • George Henderson  August 30, 2012

      Woah, what brought this on?
      Medicine is an art as well as a science. Just because some clown can’t get results with a crude approximation of what he thinks acupuncture is, doesn’t mean it never works. I understand it’s still used in modern Chinese hospitals – along with modernized Chinese herbal treatments.
      interesting paper on those here:

      In medicine treatments are often known to work before they can be explained, and some currently accepted explanations will be shown to be wrong.
      Who understood the mechanism of anaesthesia in the 19th century? We knew opioids worked for millenia before endorphins were discovered.

      Besides, even if you want to be uber-skeptical, what could be more Paleo than a bit of the old Mumbo Jumbo?
      Some people just don’t respond to evidence-based medicine unless it’s wrapped up with a nice fuzzy placebo.
      I would point out that blood-letting (phlebotomy) is actually invaluable for some conditions, but a statistical analysis of its indiscriminate use in the past, or a trial of its use in a condition picked at random might not have picked up any positive effect.
      If there is any possibility of a future benefit from acupuncture somewhere down the line, then experimentation (including treating pets) should be encouraged.

    • George Henderson  August 31, 2012

      I’m more comfortable with Chris Kresser’s dabbling in acupuncture, which is a subject he’s at least studied, and one relevant to his calling, than I am with countless other Paleo experts who pretend to know something about climate change, something they haven’t studied and know nothing about, making fools of themselves.
      If you thought Peter’s cholesterol posts were complicated, get into the physics and chemistry behind ocean currents and wind patterns.

    • Thomas  September 13, 2012

      No vendetta, just presenting the facts. I’m sorry if my tone indicated my frustration. Disprove any of my assertions about:

      1) Acunpucture.
      2) Kresser’s training.
      3) His fee structure.

      And I’ll retract my statments.

      Here is a quote from Paleohacks that provides a human dimension:


      “I tend to be more of a lurker than a poster, but I think it’s important to share that I didn’t have a good experience with Chris Kresser, either. The other reviews here touch on all the same problems I had: he is very expensive, ‘prescribes’ excessive amounts of expensive supplements without checking in on their efficacy, comes off as arrogant and didn’t seem to really like talking during our phone consultations, seems fairly indifferent to patient health issues, and has unpleasant and sometimes unresponsive office staff. I saw another review on another site where the poster said he was uncomfotable with Chris’s “aggressive business practices” and I very much agree. We all need to make a living, but this seemed to bleed a little bit too far into the realm of taking advantage of people.

      Most importantly, many rounds of testing and more than $1000 later, (yes, I’m a fool, but I felt desperate) he didn’t enlighten me to anything that led to any resolution of my symptoms. My impression of him is one of someone who speaks with great respect and deference to people he wants to impress, such as other big names in Paleoland, but treats others, like his patients who are paying him huge sums of money, with a dismissive and somewhat condescending attitude. The indifference leave me feeling a little violated, having shared such intimate details of my health, in the sincere hope that he could help.”

      I’ll not comment after this, but allow readers to draw their own conclusion. I’m just disappointed Dr. Attia is supportive of such an individual. I have a great deal of respect for him and Gary Taubes scientific approach, but this has led me to question just how scientific his blog could be when he recommends an acupuncturist as one of the regular web sites he visits.

  43. steve  August 19, 2012

    Hi Peter:
    Sorry about being off topic, but in thinking about the cholesterol series I am wondering if LDL-P can ever be to low, particularly if treated with meds. It seems to me that lower is better, despite the fact that when LDL-P gets very low, what generally shows up is overwhelmingly small LDL-P as those particles are less likely to be picked up by LDL receptors. So, would the ideal case be for the NMR to detect zero LDL-P which if i am correct means all LDL-P being picked up by LDL receptors leaving little to none to get in to the artery wall.
    Appreciate your thoughts. Thanks.

    • Peter Attia  August 19, 2012

      Great question, Steve. Epidemiologic data aren’t really strong enough to look at ultra-low levels of LDL-P, so it’s hard to really comment on that. There is some data, if I recall correctly, suggesting that there is no “floor” on apoB, though, suggesting lower LDL-P is better in a monotonic fashion. Conversely, such data on LDL-C do suggest an inverted “U” pattern, suggesting very low levels of LDL-C may not be healthy. What’s probably going on is that ultra-low LDL-C is protective of atherosclerosis, but at some point it gets too low and prevents sufficient direct and indirect RCT, which likely inhibits the stress response of the adrenal glands.

  44. Ronnie  August 19, 2012

    All this cheerful chatter about Myers-Briggs is discouraging to see on such a site. Pseudoscientific crap. It doesn’t inspire confidence to see it uncritically embraced.

    • Peter Attia  August 19, 2012

      What are you talking about, Ronnie? Do you see anyone suggesting MBTI is predictive of heart disease or social success or BMI? It’s simply a tool to help you understand how you interact with people. For example, right now my F is suppressing my T, in telling you that you’re free to leave this blog if you’re not happy with it 🙂

  45. steve  August 20, 2012

    Hi Peter: Thanks for your response on the LDL-P. How low a level of LDL-C can be a problem? My understanding is that for high risk patients the goal is LDL-C of under 70. I think Dr. Michael Davidson finds it ok to have an LDL-C as low as 40. Do you happen to know how low the LDL-C or P if they measured it the Crestor studies that showed regression in patients was? Sorry, if jumping ahead and you plan to cover it. Thanks.

    Separately, an interesting biotech company, Regeneron is working on a drug/antibody to act on the PCSK 9 protein. If your not aware of it, you might want to take a look at it. Thanks

    • Peter Attia  August 21, 2012

      Very low levels of LDL-C (below, say 40 gm/dl) may inhibit immune function. This is not a real concern for most folks, and generally results from over-treating LDL-C with medication.

  46. MikeD  August 20, 2012

    Hopefully I’ll not come off as the village idiot, but I’m trying to relate the huge depository of knowledge here to my circumstances.
    I’m 70 years old with COPD, 2 year ago pulmonary function test put me at 40% normal oxygen intake. I currently do 40 minutes dumbell workout followed by a 3-4 mile hike in the lower Sierra foothills six days a week. I feel, at 190#’s, I’m 30#’s overweight but would be overjoyed to lose 20+#’s.
    Over the last seven weeks I’ve given up all starches and most grains, eat a lot of low sugar fruit, green salads/tomatoes/avocados & other fresh veggies. Add to that bacon/eggs/red meat/whole milk unflavored Greek yogurt and 25g whey protein supplement.
    Given my health issues, am I wrong in my diet? Would love suggestions from any and all, either here in comments or at my email mikdaley@gmail.com.
    Many thanks to one and all for any help.

    • Peter Attia  August 21, 2012

      Mike, you’re certainly not a village idiot for asking these important questions, but I can’t provide medical advice on line. Hopefully others will be willing to chime in.

    • Maryann  August 21, 2012

      I think it is fantastic that you are taking charge of your health, are seeking to gain knowledge, and are not afraid to make changes. It is great that you are so active. As Peter has mentioned many times, you can make a huge difference in your health in so many ways just by eliminating sugar. You are doing much more.

      It would be interesting to take a poll to see the demographics of the readers. I believe we are of all ages. I wish that I had been able to help my parents with this knowledge; but I didn’t know any of this then. I lost my mother when she was 68 and my father at 71 to lung cancer. You are making important changes, and I want to wish you the very best. It is hard to do, and it is inspiring to see you doing so at age 70. Keep up the good work 🙂 Wishing you the best of health, maryann

  47. Ronnie  August 20, 2012

    Sun signs are a tool, too. I don’t know what it would mean to “leave this blog,” as if it were a room we were all standing in, but I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t need your permission in any event. And anyway I’m not going to, because it’s incredibly useful and informative. There’s nothing else like it. But I do promise not to comment anymore (they likely wouldn’t be approved anyway). I wish I could say something negative about MBTI without incurring your wrath, though. Maybe it was the way I said it. I have a problem with employers using MBTI in the interview process. It pains me to be dismissed since I admire you so much. I will work on my delivery in the future. My sincere apologies.

    • Peter Attia  August 20, 2012

      Fair enough, Ronnie. Sorry if I was too hard on you. I happen to think, along with a number of others, that MBTI is a tool that gives us insight into working together. It’s made a huge difference in helping me grow as a person, by realizing that there are lots of personality types out there, each pairwise interaction has a different dynamic. MBTI is just way to quantify this. I don’t think anyone was suggesting it was any more scientific than that. Your comments are appreciated.

  48. Martin  August 27, 2012

    Hi Peter,

    Are you familiar with the research of the anthropologist Herman Pontzer with the primitive Hadza people of Tanzania?

    Pontzer has measured the energy expenditures of this hunter gatherer tribe with the most advanced methods and shown that they do not expend any more energy (TEE) than sedentary modern man. He correctly states that metabolic processes (REE) are responsible for most energy expenditure.

    “Western lifestyles differ markedly from those of our hunter-gatherer ancestors, and these differences in diet and activity level are often implicated in the global obesity pandemic. However, few physiological data for hunter-gatherer populations are available to test these models of obesity. In this study, we used the doubly-labeled water method to measure total daily energy expenditure (kCal/day) in Hadza hunter-gatherers to test whether foragers expend more energy each day than their Western counterparts. As expected, physical activity level, PAL, was greater among Hadza foragers than among Westerners. Nonetheless, average daily energy expenditure of traditional Hadza foragers was no different than that of Westerners after controlling for body size. The metabolic cost of walking (kcal kg?1 m?1) and resting (kcal kg?1 s?1) were also similar among Hadza and Western groups. The similarity in metabolic rates across a broad range of cultures challenges current models of obesity suggesting that Western lifestyles lead to decreased energy expenditure. We hypothesize that human daily energy expenditure may be an evolved physiological trait largely independent of cultural differences.”


    And yet in an article in the NY Times, after elegantly explaining that total energy expenditure is controlled by metabolism, he jumps to the other side of the calories in/calories out equation and declares without any scientific basis that we therefore must limit calorie intake to control obesity.

    “Our findings add to a growing body of evidence suggesting that energy expenditure is consistent across a broad range of lifestyles and cultures. Of course, if we push our bodies hard enough, we can increase our energy expenditure, at least in the short term. But our bodies are complex, dynamic machines, shaped over millions of years of evolution in environments where resources were usually limited; our bodies adapt to our daily routines and find ways to keep overall energy expenditure in check.

    All of this means that if we want to end obesity, we need to focus on our diet and reduce the number of calories we eat, particularly the sugars our primate brains have evolved to love. We’re getting fat because we eat too much, not because we’re sedentary. Physical activity is very important for maintaining physical and mental health, but we aren’t going to Jazzercise our way out of the obesity epidemic. ”


    This again shows how deeply ingrained in our culture the “calories in/calories out” explanation of obesity is, and also that I spend too much time reading the NY Times.

    • Peter Attia  August 27, 2012

      Yes, I’m familiar with it. He acknowledges that his study does not address the role of dietary variables and would like to head back and study this question. Of course, it’s impossible to imagine the Hazda consuming any sugar or refined carbohydrates, but you are absolutely correct — the reporting in the NY Times clearly indicates the profound calories in/calories out bias in thinking.

    • Martin  August 28, 2012

      That profound calories in/calories out bias in thinking is from Pontzer himself, who wrote the article.

    • Peter Attia  August 28, 2012

      It’s hard to break old habits, isn’t it?

    • Alexandra M  August 28, 2012

      I saw the NY Times article, too. And I noticed that “We’re getting fat because we eat too much, not because we’re sedentary. ”

      While this may betray the calories in / calories out bias of the NY Times, you, Peter, and Gary have pointed out that it isn’t necessarily untrue. It just doesn’t answer the question of why people are eating too much (elevated insulin levels), or make any attempt to probe the meaning of “too much” in terms of hormones and metabolism.

      At least they didn’t try to insist that the Hadza must be getting their healthywholegrains from somewhere, or that they must be avoiding saturated fat.

  49. George Henderson  August 28, 2012

    Here we go: A calorie is a calorie? Nein Nein Nein!
    Hitler loses the Diet Wars in a brilliant Downfall – Atkins mash-up

    • Alexandra M  August 29, 2012

      Damn! I totally shouldn’t have shared that!

      Light fuse, wait for explosion…

  50. George Henderson  August 29, 2012

    Hadza lifestyle has many instructive variables; males eat most of the honey, and it is full of bee larvae.
    Wild berries are full of seeds, which may not be counted properly as protein-fat, if berries are considered carb foods.
    The lifestyle is IF and usually calorie-restricted. Parasites haven’t been wiped out.
    In immunological and circadian balance, macronutrient ratios may not be as important.
    But when did we last live like that?

  51. Irish  October 2, 2012

    Nice response in return of this matter with firm arguments and telling all regarding

  52. Joanne Boyne  October 13, 2012

    Sigh, I just read the Job description and wow, my dream job. Unfortunately I’m not fully qualified. I was mid Bachelors of Science in Nutrition when I started a family. But I would like to say that perhaps having someone not educated fully in the current nutrition curriculum may be a better choice as they will not be prejudiced with their own existing knowledge and see new research with fresh eyes.

    I’m an voracious reader of all books nutrition, health & fitness. For the last 5 months I’ve achieved phenomenal results on a Ketogenic Diet with some IF and moderate amounts of intense exercise. I had previously competed in some bodybuilding shows and needed to exercise crazy amounts to get the results I now get only working out a few times a week.

    Really love your blog and look forward to more posts.

  53. Margaret  June 27, 2013

    Hi Peter, I found this site after watching your wonderful TED talk – thank you for it! I noticed that you mention Myers-Briggs, which I too find to be a fascinating tool, and it caught my attention that you describe yourself as “off-the-charts T.” I have to say that to me both in your TED talk and here on the site you come across as much more emotionally expressive (“wearing your heart on your sleeve”), eager to bond with others and empathetic than the ISTJs I know who tend to be more inscrutable and impersonal. If it’s not too personal a question, would you mind elaborating on why you identify as T?

    • Peter Attia  June 27, 2013

      Funny question, Margaret. Yes I am a very strong I, strong S (but getting better and N), very strong T, and really off the charts J. What you saw in the TED talk was not a common ‘state’ for me. T guides my decision making, not F. I am an emotional person under rare circumstances, but I think F is in the passenger seat, while T drives, if that makes sense. For what it’s worth, the real struggle in my life is actually between I and E.

    • Margaret  June 27, 2013

      Thank you so much for indulging my funny question, Peter! You’ve certainly expanded my understanding of the ISTJ type. It’s good to know the ones in my life can’t use their T as an excuse for being less than empathetic. 😉 Thanks again!

    • Peter Attia  June 28, 2013

      I think it’s completely different, actually. I believe it is more about decision making than expression. That said, my wife (who is F), thinks I lack emotion…

  54. Kelley  July 9, 2013

    In the blog post you mentioned that you would post a link to the 40-minute video (plus, hopefully, to the Q&A that followed). Have you posted the link? Is it somewhere in this thread and did I miss it? It now occurs to me that I could go to the Symposium’s website and check there… Anyway, thanks, as always, Peter, for all you do.


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