Friday, December 23, 2016

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone!  Oh, to be 17 again...

Was that a cool head of hair, or what? 1982 was a great year for hair and rock&roll, but a bad year for food. Here's an article from 1983, FOOD TRENDS: WHAT AMERICANS ARE BUYING. It's quite illuminating. The quotes below are from the article.

Americans continued their helium-fueled search for lightness in everything from cereals and spaghetti sauce to wine -even that insouciant big guy on the block, Coca Cola, acknowledged that it was time to go on a diet.

Growing up in rural Ohio, I don't remember ever worrying about the quality of the food Mom fed us.  Bologna sandwiches, TV dinners, homemade bread and jam, margarine, ice cream...good wholesome food. And we thrived on it. We played in fields of corn sprayed with paraquat herbicides, drank from the hose, and rode bikes without helmets. And we survived.

But now it seems all this emphasis on health is taking its toll.

A large contingent of low-calorie, low-salt and low-fat foods led the parade.

It's hard to say exactly what changes in the food supply made the biggest difference, but the '80's were undeniably the start of something bad.

Fast-food restaurants seemed to pop up on every corner in the '80's. Mom's started working outside the home more.

There are dozens of ''natural'' foods sold in supermarkets today that contain artificial coloring, monosodium glutatmate, processed oils, thickeners, stabilizers and preservatives.

Technology exploded in the '80's with the first home computers, but also for food manufacturers who learned to make fake sugar, fake fat, and fake food in general.

Finally, 1983 may be the year of aspartame, the low-calorie sugar substitute that is said to be indistinguishable from the real thing. Aspartame, which is called NutraSweet on food labels and Equal when sold by itself, is expected to receive Food and Drug Administration approval soon for use in carbonated soft drinks. 

It's not too late for us to turn back the clocks of food-time. Just eat real, whole foods. Pass on the fast food and fake food. It's time we stop looking to food manufacturers to create foods that will keep us healthy and lean. Nature's been doing it for millions of years.

Just thought I'd throw this out there, holidays and all. Think about this when trying to decide what to eat for the next couple weeks.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Oil Pulling with Sesame Oil: Before and After Bacterial Analysis, Case Study

Abstract: Oil pulling with sesame oil is said to be a very effective means to remove pathogenic bacteria while allowing healthy oral bacteria to survive. Chemical mouthwashes, such as Chlorhexidine, are shown to indiscriminately kill all oral bacteria and have many side-effects. Oil-pulling with sesame oil has few side-effects and may aid in establishing a healthy oral microbiome, dental health, and overall health. Additional benefits of oil-pulling are derived from the length and nature of the treatment which causes prolonged vagus nerve stimulation. To confirm that a change in the oral microbiome occurs due to the effects of oil-pulling, samples of oral bacteria were analyzed using uBiome's 16s rRNA bacterial sequencing prior to, and after a 20 minute oil-pulling session using sesame oil. These results show an increase in probiotic strains of oral bacteria and a decrease in pathogenic strains.

Friday, December 2, 2016

My New WordPress Blog:

I've been playing with a Wordpress blog for the past year, and created to coincide with the release of my book back in March. While I like some of the features of Blogger, I find that WordPress has more features and the comments are easier to manage, and don't disappear like they do here. I've also been plagued with loads of complaints that some people cannot leave comments at all here.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Christmas Gift Ideas

Black Friday nears.  You all know I live in North Pole, Alaska, not 10 miles from Santa's Workshop, right?  Take it from me, the elves have been busy this year.  Here is a list of gift ideas for you.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Fiber, Gut Bugs, and Mucus...Oh, my!

The holy trinity of gut health, and, indeed, overall health, can be viewed as fiber, gut microbes, and the intestinal mucus layer.

Picture Credit

Thursday, October 27, 2016


Here's a short article about the brain-altering chemistry of the gut. The brain-gut axis is the latest target for Big Pharma. Rather than trying to see the effects of different foods and fibers on the brain, they'd much rather develop synthetic drugs that they can sell many, many times over the cost of Raw Potato Starch or Hi-Maize.

Read the article if you like, The current state of psychobiotics, but I really just wanted to share this very well-thought-out diagram of the interactions between gut and brain:

Friday, October 14, 2016

Weight Maintenance - Part 2

Two weeks into my post-potato hack weight maintenance phase, and I am still holding steady. My diet now is almost exactly like it was pre-hack only now I seem to be maintaining a much lower weight. I'd like to share a couple tricks I picked over the last couple years in this week's post.
Photo from: USC News

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Let's Get Political! Hillary? Donald? Resistant Starch!

If you are as sick of the election as I am, let's all shift gears and vote for something that really matters: Resistant Starch.

[tl/dr - click this link and sign the petition to allow health claims on foods containing RS]

The FDA has been sitting on a petition to approve a health claim that resistant starch may help prevent diabetes. This petition was sent to the FDA in March 2015, and they've just announced that for the third time, they will again delay their ruling...with absolutely no explanation why. We are in a position to change this!  All you have to do is VOTE.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Weight Maintenance - Part 1

Seven days after my month-long Sputember eating adventure, I am at the exact same weight as I was on Day 30.

For those that did not follow along, I took up Andrew 'SpudFit' Taylor's "Spudtember Challenge" to eat nothing but potatoes for an entire month. Andrew, in contrast, was working on his ninth month of a yearlong potato diet.

Friday, September 30, 2016

30 Days Hath Spudtember!

Well, I did it!  30 days of potatoes.

My experience pales in comparison to Andrew "SpudFit" Taylor, who just completed his 9th month, with 3 to go!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Spudtember...Day 26!

It's just a short stretch to the finish line now! Still doing great, but weight loss slowed to a creep due to the large amount of spuds I have been eating. I calculated I am eating about 1700-2000 calories (5-6 pounds) of potatoes daily. While this amount makes me feel good, it has definitely hampered my goal of losing a couple more pounds.

So, for the next 5 days, I will be keeping my potato intake down to 3 pounds per day max, in an attempt to hit my goal weight of 170 pounds for the month. I've been sitting at 173-174 for the last 10 days, so even if I lose no more weight, I'll be happy.

Wish me luck!

Also of note, I've been chatting with Karl Seddon of Elixa Probiotics. He's got a few new products up his sleeve that I think you will be excited about.  More to come next month, but for now, check out Karl as he talks about FODMAPS in this most excellent video:

Click Here to Watch the Video
What do you think?

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Spudtember...Day 20

How'd I do this week?  Great...until Sunday.  Jackie was lamenting the lack of regular meals, so I decided to cook a big Sunday roast, figuring I'd just eat the potatoes and gravy portion of it. This plan worked well until I was carving said roast. One nibble led to another and before you know, I had eaten several off-plan food items.

I nervously checked every few minutes, but the potato-police never showed up to take me away.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Spudtember 16th

Friday update on my month-long potato diet experience.

Everything is going great, I derived probably 95% of my calories the past couple days/weeks from potatoes. The odd dipping sauce or foraged tomato were my only deviations. I haven't weighed in a couple days, but I assume the weight is slowly going down still.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Spudtember 11th

Just a quick update after 10 full days of all-potato.

Starting weight: 182lbs
Today: 174lbs

Starting Fasting Blood Glucose (FBG): 99mg/dl
Today: 79mg/dl

Energy level: Excellent; Running 2-3 miles per day plus several rounds of pullups.  No decline.

Potato repulsion: Minimal

Freshly dug spuds

Saturday, September 10, 2016

New Oat Study

A short-interlude from potato-posts for breaking news on oats!

I've been seeing this study from China mentioned several times recently, so I thought I'd take a look at it. Short- and Long-Term Effects of Wholegrain Oat Intake on Weight Management and Glucolipid Metabolism in Overweight Type-2 Diabetics: A Randomized Control Trial (free full text).


...short- and long-term oat intake had significant effects on controlling hyperglycemia, lowering blood lipid and reducing weight.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Want Fries With That?

I love French fries, but was always unimpressed how they turned out when baking them in the oven. I then bought an air-fryer. This little thing works great, it's like a mini-oven. It circulates high temperature air around a metal basket, simulating an oil deep-fry.  However, my French fries were still not what you could call "marketable." McDonald's would go out of business selling my fries.

Not any more!  I figured it out.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Spudtember the day!

How I wish I had done the SpudFit challenge prior to writing the recipe section of my book!  When eating potatoes-only for 3-5 days, you can get by on the traditional roasted, baked, boiled, mashed presentations, however, after a week, it really becomes a chore to fix potatoes in a way that you get excited about eating them.  Wait 'til you see what I just did!

Potato Pizza

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Potato Grow Log

I love growing potatoes in Alaska. The soil and climate are perfect for bountiful harvests. This year I documented my potato growing process in this "grow log."

Now that Spudtember is here, I have a massive supply of fresh potatoes to enjoy and experiment with. So far, so good on my challenge to eat nothin' but spuds for an entire month. If anything, I am still amazed at the hunger-negating effects of potatoes. After a couple days, it's as if your brain starts to take pity on you. Maybe this is an evolutionary defense against going crazy in times of famine?  Or is it the gut bugs gift to us?'s some pictures of my potato patch this year:

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Spudtember 4th

Sweet Potatoes.

In The Potato Hack, I shy away from using sweet potatoes. Mainly because they are not potatoes. However, SpudFit has decided to include sweet potatoes in his long-term potato diet.

Potatoes lack Vitamins A and E.  Sweet potatoes are full of both. By adding some sweet potatoes to the menu, you are filling in some gaps in nutrients very nicely. Plus, they are a bit sweeter, a nice respite from regular potatoes.  If you've done any length of potato hack, well, you know what I mean, haha.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Spudtember, the 3rd.

I am eating nothing but potatoes his month!  Why?  Who knows... Call me crazy.  I really just wanted to see what it was like. The longest I've gone was 2 weeks, back in 2011 or so.  Then, lots of 3-5 day "hacks" over the years. I like the 3-5 day shorter term interventions, as I'll write about soon, really well, for a lot of reasons.

I'm in a super-secret, paid-access-only Facebook group, called Spudtember. The owner, Andrew "SpudFit" Taylor is charging a $10 admission, and has about 300 folks signed up. Most of these people are there because they are food addicts and overweight. Andrew is the poster-child of overweight food addicts, the entire reason, actually, for his year-long potato diet.

I am quite impressed by the folks in the group, especially with their cooking skills!  These recipes and pictures have been worth the price of admission for me. I tend to get lazy when potato hacking, resorting mostly to hashbrowns and oven-fries. Check out these pics posted on FB for the group!  Soooo many ways to cook plain potatoes! 

Friday, September 2, 2016

No Such Thing as a Carb Deficiency (Gedgaudas, 2016).

Next on my hit-list of AHS2016 videos, Nora Gedgaudas explains that we are designed to burn fat, not carbs, and that there is no requirement for daily carb intake. Thus, she speculates, we should be more like the Inuit who enjoyed perfect health eating mainly fat. "There is not glycogen in the meat," she stresses with a nervous laugh (thinking of Free The Animal, no doubt).

Resident genius "Wilbur" said yesterday in a comment:

When a person rejects conventional wisdom and lets the second brain think for itself, then THAT PERSON develops a healthy diet for THAT PERSON. I can't understand why people project their diets as the one. There is no one diet (Wilbur, 2016). 

And, with that, let's listen to Nora's plan...

tl/dr - You do not need to eat a single carb. Ever. If you like implies ill health. Every human should be eating a ketogenic, high fat diet.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

The Wahls Protocol Diet

Welcome to SPUDtember. All month I will be writing potato-based posts as I eat my way through 30 days worth of Yukon gold, California white, Pontiac red, and Peruvian blue potatoes.

Today I take on Dr. Terry Wahls.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


I have been making sauerkraut every summer for about 12 years now. I grow my own cabbages, which usually do fantastic in Alaska, sometimes reaching immense proportions.

Alaska State Fair, 2012, World Record!

Anyhow, I thought you might like to see how I make my sauerkraut.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Puttin' up Carrots and Kale

Just wanted to share some garden pics before I transition into Spudtember. Today I picked a bunch of carrots and some kale for the freezer. First I blanch the carrots for about 3 minutes, then pack in sealer-type freezer bags.  For kale, I only blanch about 30 seconds.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

SPUDtember Challenge!

Andrew "Spudfit" Taylor, the Australian bloke who is eating nothing but potatoes for an entire year, has issued a challenge on Facebook. He's calling it Spudtember. He wants to take people on a guided trip through his world of eating nothing but potatoes.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Whole Wheat...Kamut and Farro Review

I made a comment recently that "no one eats wheat, just flour." Later I wondered why. When I started looking, I found this statement could not be further from the truth. People have been eating wheat as a whole food item for thousands of years.

To explore, I bought a bag of Bob's Red Mill Farro and Kamut, the grains look like this:

Kamut (top left), Farro (top right), Modern Red Wheat (bottom)
I cooked the farro and kamut according to the basic cooking instructions, which were to "soak overnight in water and simmer for 30-40 minutes in water or stock."

Friday, August 26, 2016

Teff Pan Cakes

I've been getting emails all week from folks asking how they can incorporate whole grains into their routine. "Rich" has been working on a cracker recipe, with no luck. "Madeleine" knocks it out of the park with these pan cakes, though! I made a batch following her recipe:

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Medicinal Mushrooms and Tea...for FREE!

Here are some mushrooms I pick around my house in Alaska. There is undoubtedly something just as cool where you live!

Other mushroom posts I've written here:

The Pharmacy in your Backyard

Magic Mushrooms

The nice thing about these type of fungi is that they grow quickly and they are plentiful.  The big one is perennial, you can count it's age in the growth rings, so this one is nearly 20 years old!

I grind these mushrooms and Labrador tea and put a spoonful in with my coffee when I make a pot. If you go for mushrooms, make sure you get the right ones!  Get a good book, take a class, or ask around. Some mushrooms are edible and tasty. These are not for eating, but make good tea, and have some very healthy qualities.

Shelf Bracket Fungi

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Ed Yong Interview and New Book

Interview with Ed Yong, microbiologist.

Eating Yogurt Is Not Enough: Rebalancing The Ecosystem Of 'The Microbes Within Us'

Ed Yong, author of I Contain Multitudes, says someday we might be able to improve our health by taking probiotics, but "we are still in the very early stages of working out how to do this."

Ed Yong is a researcher who studies the microbiome.  Hear his current thinking on probiotics and fecal transplants. Great interview.  Ed Yong just released his new book this month: "I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life."

A couple teasers from the interview:

...probiotics are products that contain beneficial microbes, and they have all sorts of health claims attached to them, but actually if you look at the evidence behind these products, they tend to be a bit medically underwhelming.

A lot of these species are being chosen for historical reasons because they're easy to manufacture and package, not because they're excellent at establishing themselves in the gut. And often they're very industrialized, very proprietary strains. You know, they enter and then they disappear or they pass through. They don't have a huge amount of impact.

If anyone reads the book, let us know what you think!


Sunday, August 21, 2016

What are "Whole Grains?"

I hope you've all read Jane Karlsson's 2010 thoughts on whole grains from last week. In writing that piece, and in some follow-up comments, I realize that we all tend to use the term "whole grain" nonchalantly like everyone knows what it means. One comment from last week mentioned that quinoa was not a grain, but a seed. This had me scratching my head:


tl/dr - "Grain" is a term used to indicate that a seed is sold and traded on a worldwide scale. Any seed can be considered "grain." The term "grain" is most commonly applied to corn, wheat, oats, and soybeans. When someone gives the advice to eat more "whole grains," this does not limit you to corn, wheat, oats, and soybeans, but a world of seeds (ie. beans, lentils, pulses, rice, and more) eaten in their whole, unrefined state. 

"Cereal" grains are the seeds of plants in the grass family, most common: Corn, wheat, oats, rye, rice, barley.

"Gluten" is found in wheat, barley, rye, and oats. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Whole Grains and Jane

Forgive my back-to-back posts, it's just that I have some free time between classes. I have been sitting on a lot of good stories, and hope to get them all out before school starts back up in September. One class left!

Jane Karlsson has been a vocal proponent of whole grains since the early days of the paleo diet craze. She was in communication with a blogger, Anthony Colpo, who turned a chain of emails into a blog post in 2010, in an attempt to discredit Jane...six years later, the paleo movement is starting to soften their stance on grains, with much credit due to Jane's insistence that we need grains.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Twice this week I have been asked to check out something that Dr. Joseph Mercola is recommending. Both times I was unimpressed. I am impressed by his web presence, though.

Over One Million Subscribers -- including tens of thousands of health professionals -- read and trust the "eHealthy News You Can Use" e-newsletter -- and that number is growing by an average of 1,000 subscribers per day!

Let's take a look at what Dr. Mercola advocates. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Garlic Scapes

I tried my hand at growing garlic this year!  I bought seed bulbs from Territorial Seeds, a hard-neck Siberian variety. I planted the bulbs last October as the ground was starting to freeze. Imagine my delight when nearly all of the garlic bulbs sprouted this spring.

I've eaten a few immature garlic bulbs already, nice flavor.  But now I'm learning about something I had never even knew existed before this summer...garlic scapes.

My Picture

Garlic scapes are the seed pods of the garlic plant. I don't know that they have any amazing health properties outside the general goodness found in garlic as we discussed in October. Oh, and attracting women!

I've got about 50 of these things to toy with.  So far I've eaten them raw (pretty strong!), sauteed them in butter (OMG), and cooked some alongside potatoes in my hot air fryer (crunchy). I'm tempted to throw a couple into a crock of sauerkraut, but afraid it might ruin the batch.

Here's a website called Serious Eats, with seven garlic scape recipes...

Anybody else heard of these gems?


Monday, August 15, 2016

The Tannin Hack!

OK, that's not quite as catchy as "The Potato Hack." 

It turns out that certain eating patterns we naturally gravitate towards can increase the amount of food that bypasses normal digestion, and serves as food for our gut bacteria.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Summer Treat: Honey!

Honey often ends up on dieting "banned" lists. Is honey an evil sugar as so many in the diet industry would have us believe? Vegans do not eat honey, others say it's just nasty "bee puke." Some would even want you to believe that honey is actually worse than pure, white table sugar!

Refined table sugar (sucrose) is processed in our bodies by insulin, which is produced by the pancreas. Honey is about 55 per cent fructose, a fruit sugar that's processed by the liver. Despite the chemical difference, our bodies still react to honey in much same way as it reacts to refined sugar - with a blood-sugar spike.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Summer Eating: Pico de Gallo!

Want an easy way to get more onions, garlic, and tomatoes in ya?  Try Terra Incognita's idea:

Easy Pico de Gallo (makes 2-3 cups)
  • 2.5 tomatoes on the vine
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1/2 jalepeno, de-seeded and diced
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup green pepper, diced
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, diced
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

RS vs. Fiber in Real Food

A funny little abstract to a science article has been going around lately: Effects of total fibre or resistant starch-rich diets within lifestyle intervention in obese prediabetic adults.

It's generally accompanied with the admonishment that "fiber" is "better" than RS. Well, I finally got hold of the full-text, all is not as it seems!

The conclusion, as presented in the abstract:

At the end of the study, RS-rich diet failed to affect glycaemic control in prediabetic obese individuals in contrast to the regular fibre-rich diet, which indicated that fibre profile could be an important determinant of the effect of dietary intervention.

Post moved to

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

New Fiber Study (feat. Raw Potato Starch!)

A great study out of Denmark last week. Nineteen people between 39 and 75, all with metabolic syndrome (high blood pressure, cholesterol, etc.), were given a low-fiber or a high-fiber diet.  Guess what? Those on the high-fiber diet got healthier...the tl/dr (too long/don't read) version is in the conclusion, here:

In conclusion, the results of our study support the hypothesis that high intake of both RS and AX [wheat/rye fiber] is capable of changing the intestinal microbiota and SCFA production in subjects with MetS in contrast with a low-fibre diet (WSD). Most distinctly, Bifidobacterium was clearly enriched by the HCD [High-fiber diet], which was in strong agreement with the increased faecal acetate concentration. Also, dysbiotic changes observed during the WSD [low fiber] emphasise the need for balanced diets, including fiber from various sources.

In other words...We are sorely missing fiber.  What kind and how much is the million dollar question.  But these researchers seem to like Raw Potato Starch, Hi-Maize Corn Starch, and wheat fiber.  Let's discuss.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Jack LaLanne's New Website!

Jack LaLanne's (1914-2011) wife (La La) and son (Jon) recently started a website ( devoted to Jack's timeless advice on health, nutrition, and exercise. My friends and family know that I have been a HUGE fan of Jack for many years. (Good article here!)

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Alternative to the Potato Hack!

FDA approves stomach-draining obesity treatment.

A new weight loss device offers a novel approach to cutting calories: draining them from the stomach before they are digested. The AspireAssist system consists of a thin tube implanted in the stomach, connecting to an outside port on the skin of the belly. About 30 minutes after finishing a meal, users connect the port to an external device, which drains some of the recently-consumed food into the toilet. The manufacturer says its system removes about 30 percent of food stored in the stomach before it begins causing weight gain.

Is this really what it's come to? I guess this is healthier than sticking a finger down your throat after a meal.

Potatoes By Day

As an aside, if anyone has tried the potato hack for weight loss and wished there was an easier way, please try the variation that I described in the book as "Potatoes by Day."

I have been getting overwhelming feedback that simply eating potatoes for 1-2 meals a day, and one "real" meal results in very good weight loss for many. I have always liked this approach, especially for for a long-term weight loss measure. Just keep your one real meal as "real" as possible, not an excuse to pig-out on junk food. I will be re-examining "Potatoes by Day" later, but if anyone has tried, how'd it go?

Monday, June 6, 2016

Beating the Odds

Interesting article on MedicalXpress just now: Few engage in five behaviors for preventing chronic disease

They picked the top 5 health killers and examined how many people do all five...not many.
  • No smoking
  • Moderate to no drinking
  • Exercising
  • Normal BMI
  • Getting enough sleep

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Are Microbes in Charge?

After last week's post on the criminally insane habits of those in need of microbes, several recent developments caught my eye and got me wondering, "who's really in charge?"

An unrelated (yet completely related) post by The Homeschooling Doctor about brain development from adolescence through adulthood, a note from Dr. Kadar, DDS concerning a special bacteria found in garden soil, and another note from Wild Cucumber saying that she has resumed blogging at Garbling the Dandelion (Great pics!), all point towards the fact that we need to get down and dirty and embrace our inner overlords.

Turns out there's a special bacteria found ubiquitously in the soil.

Friday, May 13, 2016

RS2, Part Two...Yep, Still in Love! RS4 not so much.

RS2 has been in lots of headlines this week!  Thanks to everyone who keeps me posted on the latest happenings in Resistant Starch Land.

Post moved to

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Raw Potato Starch. I Still Love it!

For all of you that have read "The Potato Hack: Weight Loss Simplified," you may have found the chapters of resistant starch (RS) and potato starch (PS). I hope you read these chapters, this may be the most important part of the whole book beyond the quick weight loss experienced from eating a potato-only diet.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Amazing Reviews!

I search the internet daily for new reviews of my book, just to see what people are saying. I keep hoping not to find any "Stupidest book ever" or "This book will kill you" type reviews. But so far, they have all been just great.

Oh, and so far, 20 Amazon reviews. All "5 star." I have been holding my own in the top 10 books for the massive "diet and weightloss" category. Rising to #5 over the weekend, but settling in at #10 lately. It changes hourly! To be #5 blew my mind. There are something like 10,000 books in this category! Is it the cool cover that my Aunt Ann made? Check out her latest pics.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Ancestral Potato Hackers?

Maybe this potato hack thing is ingrained in us, evolutionarily. Here is proof that potato hacking predates even Homo sapiens.

From, Do Animals Have Culture

Post moved to

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Blood Glucose, Leaky Gut, and Potatoes Part 4

Still trying to work this out: Does dietary glucose enter the bloodstream through a backdoor of leaky tight junctions (TJ), leading to increased blood glucose (BG) and insulin resistance? I'm always looking for alternate theories, and the Potato Hack has me thinking that there is a third alternative to diabetes that everyone has overlooked.

My favorite Guinea pig, my Dad, is diabetic but he won't admit it, nor take pills for it. His fasting blood glucose (FBG) is near 200 most mornings. He's been potato hacking for three days now, and doing "a good job" according to a spy in the house (thanks, Mom!). Potatoes, according to every doctor and nutritionist, should be Dad's worst enemy, yet he's eaten nothing but spuds for three days and says:

...blood reading this a.m. was 102 haven't seen that number in ages. BP down too. Have done potatoes for 3 days, also dropped a few pounds. plan to keep it up a few more days...

Has my 70 year old dad suddenly become insulin sensitive and reversed his diabetes? I'd love to stick him with a continuous glucose monitor connected to a computer, but my prediction is that if Dad starts adding a bottle of Coke or a candy bar to his meals, the entire effect will quickly reverse itself, and he'll be greeted again with an FBG of 200.

I'm learning today that there is maybe a huge difference between a potato and a bag of sugar, despite the potato's reputation for being "a bag of sugar."


Blood Glucose, Leaky Gut, and Potatoes Part 3

I am exploring the possibility that a condition known as "leaky gut" can cause elevated blood glucose levels. Chronically elevated blood glucose (BG) leads to insulin resistance at the cellular level and is often seen as the beginning stage of metabolic syndrome, a cascade of events that leads to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, auto-immune diseases, and cancer. Low carb diets are often used to control high blood glucose levels, but ironically, high carb diets can also control high blood glucose. Many people doing the potato hack report normalized BG levels almost as soon as they switch from their normal diet to a diet of only potatoes. Throughout history, before insulin became available as a diabetes treatment, high carb/low fat diets were a standard treatment for diabetes. Is this approach still valid today and could it be due to a condition where glucose is being absorbed directly from the gut to the blood, bypassing normal mechanisms?

Dad's report (Normal FBG 180-200):

...blood reading this am was 102 haven't seen that number in ages. BP down too. Have done potatoes for 3 days, also dropped a few pounds. plan to keep it up a few more days...

In part 3, we'll look at the route a glucose molecule takes from the dinner plate until it is stored in your body.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Blood Glucose, Leaky Gut, and Potatoes Part 2

I am exploring a possible third arm of blood glucose (BG) dysfunction and why the potato hack causes a lowering of BG levels in some people. I think that "leaky gut" is responsible for elevated BG in some people with type 2 diabetes (T2D).

Monday, April 4, 2016

Blood Glucose, Leaky Gut, and Potatoes Part 1

My Dad, John, "near 70," has had blood glucose control issues for a long time. He sees fasting blood glucose (FBG) levels of nearly 200 some days. I have been telling him to get on meds, but he takes after me...very stubborn. Dad has been potato hacking for a day or two, just to see what the fuss is about. This morning he wrote:

Saturday, April 2, 2016

SpudFit...90+ Days on an All-Potato Diet

I've talked about Andrew Taylor (aka SpudFit) before. He started out the year at about 300 pounds and is down to around 250 now. He eats nothing but potatoes for meals and snacks, lightly spiced. He drinks soy milk and the occasional beer.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Potato Starch Insufflation

A new paper out this week suggesting that raw potato starch (RPS) exerts profound metabolic effects when taken as an insufflation.

Raw Potato Starch's effects appear almost immediately after a single dose and disappear within a few minutes or within an hour. Taken in small amounts, RPS usually makes the user feel euphoric, energetic, talkative, and mentally alert, especially to the sensations of sight, sound, and touch. It can also temporarily decrease the need for food and sleep. Some users find that the RPS helps them perform simple physical and intellectual tasks more quickly, although others experience the opposite effect.

I've been experimenting all week on ways to prepare RPS for insufflating. I think I have come up with several ways. I think this is the start of a whole new career for me.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The Potato Hack now on Kindle!

Now available on Kindle. If you have Kindle Select, it should be free, otherwise, $6.

Also, a cool review from the Potato Grower's Magazine:

Book Touts Potatoes’ Health Benefits

Published online: Mar 29, 2016
Author Tim Steele’s new bookThe Potato Hack: Weight Loss Simplified, focuses on potatoes as an article of health. Included in the book are simple ways to use potatoes to aid in weight loss and an extensive section on the benefits of resistant starch, of which potatoes are an excellent source.
The “potato hack” diet was modeled after an 1849 diet plan for people who were becoming overweight and “dyspeptic” from, simply put, living too luxuriously. This potato diet simply called for one to eat nothing but potatoes for a few days at a time, promising that fat men would become as “lean as they ought to be.” One hundred and sixty-seven years later, the population is more overweight and unhealthy than ever, but the potato diet still works.
Potatoes contains natural drug-like agents that affect inflammation, hunger, insulin, sleep, dreams, mood and body weight. The Potato Hack touts the potato as the best diet pill ever invented. The potato hack is a short-term (three to five days) intervention where one eats nothing but potatoes. This short mono-food experiment strengthens immune systems and provides dieters with all of the nutrition they need to remain energetic, sleep great and, as a side effect, lose weight. The potato hack will help develop a new relationship with food, hunger, taste and self. The potato hack is not just for the overweight. The book posits that, as noted in 1849, anyone with digestive complaints who follows an all-potato diet for a few days at a time will find his or her digestion greatly improved.
Modern science shows that simple diets high in fiber create an intestinal microbiome that is highly diverse and stable. This diversity and stability is lacking in most people and leads to digestive complaints like gastroesophageal reflux disease, irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, and small intestinal bacterial overgrowths.
This book explains the science behind the potato hack, some variations on the basic hack, recipes, and what to do if it does not work as advertised. Also found in The Potato Hack is a comprehensive review of resistant starch, gut health and potato history.
Most of the book’s photography was done by award-winning photographer Ann Overhulse.
The Potato Hack is available now from Amazon.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Potato Hackin'

What a week!  I finally got a peek at the book after about 70 people had already gotten their copies. Luckily, there were no big mistakes and I think that CreateSpace did a great job of printing the books and Archangel Ink did a great job of formatting the interior. Hopefully the Kindle conversion will be done by this time next week and I can start promoting the book for real. I have high hopes that the potato commissions of the world will embrace The Potato Hack as a way to promote potato consumption.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Potato Hack Book, Now Available!

This has been a long time in the making, and you all have been instrumental. The book is now available in soft cover format at the CreateSpace bookstore. It costs $12 plus shipping. It will be available on Amazon next week, and for Kindle the week after.

Click here to buy paperback version at CreateSpace

Click here to buy paperback on Amazon (Kindle and e-books coming soon!)

Here's the final cover design, I appreciate all of your feedback on the beta-versions:

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Buying Potatoes

Has this happened to you?:

At the supermarket you are confronted with an endless array of potatoes. You try to think which one does what, which one has most resistant starch, which one is best for boiling...well, here's the solution. It's not that hard.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Resistant Starch Content in Potatoes

Back to my two favorite subjects: Potatoes and resistant starch. A new paper out, one that examined the fiber and starch profiles of numerous potato types. This is the first paper to fully describe the RS found in raw, cooked, and cooked and cooled potatoes.

From the Food Chemistry journal, "Evaluation of nutritional profiles of starch and dry matter from early potato varieties and its estimated glycemic impact" (Pinhero et al, 2016). It's still in draft, but I managed to sneak a few tidbits out for you.

Several studies reported that potatoes generally have medium to high GI, which has often adversely affected their consumption, but have overlooked the many nutritional and health benefits of potatoes.

Post moved to!