Category: Fats

Dear Mark: Carbs and Serum Saturated Fat, Fat and Polyphenols, and Avocado Oil for Searing

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering three questions from readers. All three questions come from last week’s saturated fat post. First, I explore the true reason for increases in serum palmitic acid—too many carbs. Second, I investigate whether dairy or saturated fat affect polyphenol absorption, and whether it actually matters. And finally, I discuss the merits of avocado oil for high heat cooking and searing.

Let’s go:

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Will Saturated Fat Kill Your Cells?

No matter what kind of evidence comes out to the contrary, the anti-saturated fat sect won’t relinquish its dogma. Whenever its advance is rebuffed—perhaps by an observational study showing the lack of relations between saturated fat intake and heart disease, or a study showing the beneficial effects of saturated fat on multiple health markers—they regroup and try another route. The latest is a study that several readers sent to me, worried that the attack had finally made it through the defenses. In it, researchers purport to show that saturated fat increases the solidity and rigidity of cellular membranes, reducing membrane fluidity and eventually leading to cell death.

Is it true? Have we finally lost? What was this study all about?

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Where I Part Ways with the Popular Keto Movement

The explosive growth of interest in the ketogenic diet has been a net good for the state of nutrition. For one, people have accepted the fact that eating fat won’t kill you, and they’re even getting clued into the benefits of eating it.

But there are places where I part ways with the popular keto movement.

Let me explain….

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Is Constant Ketosis Necessary – Or Even Desirable?

Good morning, folks. With next week’s The Keto Reset Diet release, I’ve got keto on the mind today—unsurprisingly. I’ve had a lot of questions lately on duration. As I’ve mentioned before, a good six weeks of ketosis puts in place all the metabolic machinery for lasting adaptation (those extra mitochondria don’t evaporate if/when you return to traditional Primal eating).

But what about the other end of the issue? How long is too long?  I don’t do this often, but today I’m reposting an article from a couple of years ago on this very topic. I’ve added a few thoughts based on my recent experience. See what you think, and be sure to share any lingering questions on the question of keto timing and process. I’ll be happy to answer them in upcoming posts and Dear Mark columns.

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Doing Keto the Right Way: An Hour with Aubrey Marcus

A couple of weeks ago I sat down with entrepreneur extraordinaire, multi-sport athlete, and consciousness explorer, Aubrey Marcus, for an in-depth and entertaining discussion of everything from hangover cures to keto philosophy.

Marcus has always been one of my favorite people to talk with, and that morning in my backyard was no exception. We covered all things keto—from the mistakes people make in bottoming out their carbs instantaneously to the advantages of stair-stepping the process. I had a chance to share about my upcoming Keto Reset Diet book as well as personal details of my own experience with the keto state. Aubrey offered his latest favorite recipes (inspired by Primal Kitchen® products, no less!), and we talked in full but casual detail how keto dives set us up for genuine, lasting metabolic flexibility and overall health. There’s a lot of science and plenty of laughs here. I hope you enjoy, everybody!

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Is Keto Bad for the Thyroid?

Keto is fantastic, everyone says. It’s a great way to lose weight, improve cognition, and stave off degenerative disease. It may help your performance in the gym and on the track. It could even give Grandpa some respite from Alzheimer’s.

But it’s hell on your thyroid. Right?

Keto detractors and proponents alike often warn that remaining in ketosis will tank your thyroid. The thyroid’s an important gland, exerting major influence over essential systems like fertility, energy, metabolism, body temperature regulation, blood lipids, and general wellness. It controls the metabolic rate of every organ in the body. We want it working well, so this is a major blow to keto—if the criticism holds true. Fortunately, there’s much more to this story.

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