Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe

Podcast Episode #294: Keto & Low Carb with Jimmy Moore

Diane Sanfilippo Featured, Paleo and Primal, Podcast Episodes 3 Comments

Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo & Liz WolfeTopics

  1. News and updates from Diane[2:40]
  2. Introducing our guest, Jimmy Moore [5:56]
  3. Something new that I'm into from Jimmy [9:37]
  4. Let's talk about keto [11:30]
  5. Factors affecting carb amount [17:27]
  6. Who would best benefit from keto; or not [21:34]
  7. Burning fat for fuel [25:44]
  8. How to know when you're in ketosis [30:44]
  9. Timeframe for trying out keto [38:20]
  10. Exogenous ketones [42:30]
  11. Benefits of ketosis [52:00]
  12. Healthy from the inside [57:12]

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Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe Balanced Bites Podcast | Diane Sanfilippo & Liz Wolfe

You’re listening to the Balanced Bites podcast episode 294.

Diane Sanfilippo: Welcome to the Balanced Bites podcast. I’m Diane; a certified nutrition consultant, and the New York Times bestselling author of Practical Paleo and The 21-Day Sugar Detox. I live in San Francisco with my husband and fur kids. I’m the co-creator of the Balanced Bites Master Class, alongside my partner in crime, Liz Wolfe. And together we’ve been bringing you this award-winning podcast for 5 years and counting. We’re here to share our take on modern paleo living, answer your questions, and chat with leading health and wellness experts. Enjoy this week’s episode, and submit your questions at Or on one of our call to question graphics over on Instagram.

Remember our disclaimer: The materials and content within this podcast are intended as general information only, and are not to be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Before we get started, let’s hear from one of our sponsors.

Diane Sanfilippo: I recently sat down with Balanced Bites podcast sponsor, Bethany, of Primally Pure Skincare to ask her more about her company and the products that they make.

Hey Bethany; I would love to hear, what’s your story in a nutshell?

Bethany: I started formulating products in my kitchen in 2013, and gave them out to family, friends, and people at my CrossFit gym. In 2015, I began selling on my family farms website, Primal Pastures. Soon after that, Primally Pure really took off, and grew into a business of its own. Today, Primally Pure is no longer in my kitchen, but in a mixed office/warehouse space in southern California, and we have a team of 6.

Diane Sanfilippo: So tell me. What inspired you to create Primally Pure?

Bethany: I suffered from acne, rosacea, and weird skin sensitivities throughout my teenage years and early 20s. I tried all kinds of creams and prescription medications, but nothing provided me with lasting results. Finally, I found some relief when I adopted a paleo diet and started using all natural ingredients on my skin. Which inspired me to share the natural solutions I had found with others.

Diane Sanfilippo: Don’t forget Diane’s favorite Primally Pure product is the dry shampoo, and Liz’s favorite is the Everything Spray with magnesium. As a special bonus for you, Primally Pure is offering a free lip balm with your first purchase of one item or more. Simply add a lip balm to your cart along with any one item, and use the code “balancedbites”, one word no caps, during checkout to receive one of their lip balms for free with your order. Head to and check out their range of safe and effective all natural skincare products.

1. News and updates from Diane [2:40]

Diane Sanfilippo: Hey everyone! It’s me, Diane, here with a very special guest today, who I will introduce in just a few moments. But I wanted to give you a few updates. As of right now, when this episode goes live, Liz and I will be in Dallas together with our friend, Cassy Joy, as well at the Beautycounter Leadership conference. So if you're there and you see us, come say hi. It would be super fun to meet you, and let us know you’re a podcast listener. I would love to just give you a hug or take a selfie or take a picture; whatever works for us.

And a heads up that the Diane Direct vlog, specifically around keto diets, which is the main subject of this podcast. I’ve got 2 parts already up on YouTube as of the airing of this show, and part 3 will be coming soon as well as potentially a part 4. But what I’m doing is giving a little bit of a break in between, so that I can get some time for some testing, as you’ll hear about in my interview with Jimmy. And I want to put some of what he and I spoke about kind of to the test. So it’s going to be a cool little spaced out part 3, so we can get a little bit more information and then I’ll share more of my findings with you. So that will be really fun.

And then my last update for you guys is that the 21-Day Sugar Detox coaches program I’ve been talking about. I want to give you the heads up that it opens mid-May. So I think we have it set for May 15th. It will be open for 2 weeks, so it will close at the end of the day on May 31st. And the program kicks off on June 4th with your first call. You’ll be able to log in before that, and have access to some of the welcome materials. But the program kicks off on June 4th, and we have 7 separate calls along with the program. There are two breaks in there; so in the first week, we give you an extra break so that you have time to study for your certification test. And then later on, over the course of the time that we have for calls, the July 4th holiday does come up, so we give you a break for that, as well. And the last call we have scheduled is around July 30th.

So, note on that, we love for you to follow along the schedule with us, but if it just doesn’t fit your timeline. If you’ve got too much going on in the summer, which we kind of did it this way because we know a lot of you have more time to do things over the summer. But if you don’t, know that you can always enroll and take it at your own pace. You can either move through things a little quickly, and then just join us for the calls whenever we’re having them. Or you can pace it out whenever you want. You don’t even have to start it when we start it. It’s totally up to you. But we don’t open enrollment for this very often. I know a lot of you have been waiting. We actually didn’t open enrollment for it at all in the calendar year of 2016 because I was launching Practical Paleo second edition and the Balanced Bites Master Class. So there was just too much going on.

But we do plan to open it about once a year, unless there’s a really high demand to do it more often than that. So just kind of keep that in mind, that if you’ve been looking at it and you want to do it, get in on it now.

Also, as a side note, if you have not done a 21-Day Sugar Detox, and you want to be a coach; you’ve got to do one detox before you can be a coach. So we’d be fine if you’re starting one right now, and you’re going to finish it up right around the time that you’re in the program. But beyond that, you’ve got to at least have done it one time. So that’s the heads up there. And if it’s something you want to do later, make sure you at least do one 21-Day Sugar Detox before we open enrollment again.

2. Introducing our guest, Jimmy Moore [5:56]

Diane Sanfilippo: Alright. If you’re not already familiar with my guest for today’s episode, who is a veteran guest of the Balanced Bites podcast, Jimmy Moore, let me give you a little quick background. Jimmy catapulted onto the health scene in 2004, after a phenomenal 180-pound weight loss enabled him to come off of prescription drugs for high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and respiratory problems. He is the energetic personality behind the uber popular blog, Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb, and the host of the longest running and one of the top ranked iTunes health podcasts; the Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb Show.

Jimmy also hosts two other active podcasts; Keto Talk with Jimmy Moore and the Doc; and Fasting Talk, with Jimmy Moore and Dr. Jason Fung, featuring Megan Ramos; along with the retired podcast, Ask the Low-Carb Experts, and the departed Low-Carb Conversations. He has interviewed over 1200 of the world’s top health experts, and has dedicated his life to helping people get the best information possible about living healthy, so that they can make the right decisions for their health.

Jimmy is an engaging speaker who has been invited to speak all around the world, including the UK, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and across the United States. He is the international best-selling author of the Complete Guide to Fasting; the Ketogenic Cookbook; Keto Clarity; and Cholesterol Clarity. As well as a September 26 release of the Keto Cure, and the December 26 release of Keto Freedom. Whoo! So many books. You guys can learn more about jimmy and his work at And as I mentioned, he’s been on the show before. Episode 30, 101, and 150. Definitely check those out.

Make sure you check out my Diane Direct vlog, multi-part series on keto. It’s over on YouTube. You can sign up/subscribe for updates over there. I love the subscription over on YouTube, because it just gives you one email with all of the different videos that have come out for the week of anybody that you're subscribed to. So it’s kind of a fun way to get those notifications. And my guest today, Jimmy, is no stranger to the Balanced Bites podcast. He has been on before, twice. Once for Cholesterol Clarity; that was episode 101. So, 101 {laughs} we’re on episode 294 now, so it’s been a while. And also episode 150.

We were talking about keto; 150 we were talking about Keto Clarity; that’s how long ago we were talking about this with his first book on it. So he’s no stranger to a ketogenic diet. And in fact, while he didn’t invent this diet, he certainly has been among those at the forefront of talking about it in a much bigger way, and bringing the topic to the public. So welcome to the show, Jimmy.

Jimmy Moore: Hey Diane! I love how you said, “And we have Jimmy.” So it’s like I’ve been relegated to like Cher, or Madonna; and now Jimmy. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: Relegated. That makes it sound; I mean, isn’t that a demotion?

Jimmy Moore: Bestowed; how about that?

Diane Sanfilippo: Ok. Ok. Yeah, yeah. There you go. I mean, hey.

Jimmy Moore: Are you testing my linguistic skills now?

Diane Sanfilippo: No, but I was kind of testing mine. Do I know what that even means? Listen. We know about your skills with words.

Jimmy Moore: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: Don’t ever play Jimmy on Words with Friends you guys. If you’re looking through and you suddenly see a name you recognize and it’s Jimmy Moore in the Words with Friends list; do not play him. Just a warning.

Jimmy Moore: Yeah, follow me. LivinLowCarbMan. I’ll play anytime.

Diane Sanfilippo: You’ve been warned. Fair warning.

Jimmy Moore: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: So, alright, before we get into all the keto talk. Which, coincidentally is the name of one of your many podcasts; Keto Talk. Right?

Jimmy Moore: Yeah.

3. Something new that I’m into from Jimmy [9:37]

Diane Sanfilippo: Let’s do something a little more fun. A little bit of an ice breaker, as I like to call it. Let’s talk about something that you’re digging lately, so that our audience can just get to know Jimmy a little bit better.

Jimmy Moore: It’s so funny you use the term digging, because digging is literally what I’ve been doing lately. We’ve been doing a lot of improvements to our house over the past year or so. We got a nice little garden; I’m looking at it out here out my window. 20 by 20-foot garden that we’re growing vegetables in right now, right next to our patio. But in the backyard, we have chickens. So I have 12 chickens back there, get fresh eggs every day. Just had 5 eggs a while ago, cooked in butter with some cheese on top. Beautiful. And it’s the most amazing eggs ever. I’ve seen your Instagram videos recently where you guys; well, you cooked it for 8 minutes and it came out this beautiful, and I saw the orange. I was like; “Yep, that looks familiar.”

But what I’ve been digging is mulch. I am a mulch fanatic. I’ve been to the Home Depot probably 6 times now with about 80 bags of mulch that I’ve literally covered all the front garden, all the back. Kind of all around. And in the backyard, I have a dirt pit for my chickens, and I dumped 10 of those bad boys in there. Didn’t even spread it around. I just dumped the big bags in big piles, and less than 6 hours later it was all evenly spread all through the dirt pit. It was beautiful. And those girls are just loving it. In fact this morning; just this morning, I saw them all wallowing in it, cooling off and everything. We’ve had some rain and so that’s literally what I’m digging. I’m digging mulch right now.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs}

Jimmy Moore: I never did that before. I kind of got the bug now. I got black under my fingernails, it’s still so mulchy.

Diane Sanfilippo: I love it. Good for the gut biome too, right?

Jimmy Moore: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: That’s awesome.

Jimmy Moore: As Josh Axe would say; “Eat dirt!” {laughs}

3. Let’s talk about keto [11:30]

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} Awesome. Alright, so we’re going to talk all about keto today. This is something you talk about, literally every single day.

Jimmy Moore: Yeah.

Diane Sanfilippo: Between all of your podcasts. Which you’ve got Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb, you’ve got Keto Talk; you’ve got now Fasting Talk. Is there also another one?

Jimmy Moore: I have two retired ones. One is still going, but I passed it off to a couple of NTPs; Low-Carb Conversations. Which I think you’ve been on one time before, as well. So I passed that off to Kara Halderman and Leah Williamson who lives in Australia. They’re both NTPs. So they’re kind of carrying on that tradition of that show. It just got to be too much, and I wanted to do more stuff. So retired that one; moved to the next project. You know, you do that all the time, yourself.

And then Ask the Low-Carb Experts I had way back in the day, but it just got to be; it was a live show, and it took a lot of energy to do a live show. I like these pre-recorded ones that you do later. I can pile them up; 6, 7 at a time, and air them a month or two later.

Diane Sanfilippo: Totally. As much as I love the live stuff, it is really tough to schedule and just make sure that life isn’t going to happen. So anyway; awesome. You guys, as you’re listening, if you find yourself loving this episode. Which I know you will, definitely check out all of Jimmy’s shows. He’s definitely one of the people who for sure inspired me to even start a podcast. I think between Jimmy and Robb Wolf and Sean Croxton; the three of you guys, I knew what you were up to and I was totally into listening to the podcast. And that really inspired me. I was like; “Well, I’m a talker, so how about we do this?”

Jimmy Moore: Yeah you are. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} So, let’s dive in. Obviously, previous episode you were on, 150. You guys, go back and listen to that one because we’re probably talking about some similar things in some different ways, so definitely listen to that. About Keto Clarity. But can you give our listeners a refresher? What exactly is a ketogenic diet, and what’s your history and experience with it? What was the motivation and inspiration for you to take things from just low-carb, really to this ketogenic approach?

Jimmy Moore: It’s so funny. I just gave a talk last night, about an hour from here from my house. And it was all newbies; they knew nothing about keto. “What is a keto?” {laughs} So I love this question. And I love talking at a very basic level; that’s kind of my style. Making this very simplified.

So at the very basic knowledge of this, most people walking around are sugar burners. I’d probably say 95-99% of the population around the world primarily burn sugar as their source of energy; their primary source of energy. But a lot of people don’t realize the body has a very natural mechanism to tap into another energy source, and that’s fat. So what this is called is fat-adaptation; also known as keto adaptation. It’s basically where you have the production of ketone bodies, because your body is burning fat efficiently.

So, how do you get there? You’ve got to cut the carbs to your personal tolerance level. And people often say, “Well what is the macronutrient ratio?” I don’t know. You’ve got to figure that out on your own. You’ve got to figure out what that carb tolerance level is. Then you move to protein; because that actually can be problematic in excess amounts for a lot of people. So you have moderate down the protein to your threshold level. Again, if you’re a CrossFit athlete and you’re able to burn through a lot of the glucose effects that would happen from the protein; of course, the amino acids that you need to build muscle, you could probably get more protein than someone who is insulin resistant, post-menopausal, and they’re stuck. And not able to do anything.

So what’s left is fat. So you eat fat to satiety. So low-carb to your tolerance, protein moderated to your threshold, fat to satiety. When you do that, in about a 2 to 4-week period for most people, you’ll make that shift over from sugar burner to fat burner.

Me personally, I have been low-carb since 2004, when I went on the Atkins diet. Paleo came into my life around 2010, made that switch. And then 2012 I thought; you know what, I need to get serious about low-carb. Because why am I doing low-carb? The purpose is to try to lower insulin, to try to lower inflammation, and prevent disease. That was kind of my purpose in it. So I tested for ketones, and I wasn’t in ketosis. And I’m going, “How am I not in ketosis?” {laughs} It ended up being that I was eating too much protein. So once I was able to moderate the protein; I started doing a whole self-experimentation about it. You had me on your show to talk about it. I learned a lot about that process, and started articulating it. And that’s where Keto Clarity came from. So that was my interest in this.

Diane Sanfilippo: You mentioned that, how many grams of carbs people will eat on keto is going to vary.

Jimmy Moore: Widely.

4. Factors affecting carb amount [17:27]

Diane Sanfilippo: This is a really interesting notion. Because like you said, people want to ask, “How many grams?” And perhaps because the way that I’ve approached it. And I think the first time I followed a keto diet was back in 2010 into 2011. So first time I did this was now almost 7 years ago. And I had heard about it from a bodybuilder, or personal trainer/bodybuilder, who didn’t say anything about the protein thing. So I was taking my carbs way down; which I still do. On my keto days, 35-ish grams, let’s just say approximately. But what you’re saying is the protein intake, because as we know gluconeogenesis is a process by which protein can be converted to sugar in the liver for glucose for use by our body.

So if we can have a varying level of carbs, what are some factors that might push that number higher? How high could it possibly go where someone is eating X number of carbs and they still could be in ketosis? And what factors impact that?

Jimmy Moore: You know what I think about, is Michael Phelps. The famous Olympian swimmer, famously eating, what 10,000 calories per day during his training. And guess what? He’s pretty darn lean. Dude has not got a lot of body fat on his body at all. And he has to be burning very, very efficiently the energy that he’s eating. So he’s having quite a few carbohydrates in there. I would love it if they had tested for his ketones, because I would not be surprised if he was showing therapeutic levels of ketosis. Definitely over 0.5. in the midst of his exercise performance, because what people don’t realize is exercise kind of mitigates a lot of the carbohydrates you can consume. Especially within the context of being insulin sensitive.

So, a lot of younger people that are into CrossFit and really intensive types of exercise, they’re not quite as metabolically damaged as the middle-aged man or woman who has been struggling with their weight all their life. So it’s a different subset of the population that I think they get away with more carbs than not.

Now, I was recently on a panel at a keto conference called Low-Carb Breckenridge, and one of the panelists, Mark Cucuzzella; he’s a runner. And he said, “guys. We’ve got to stop freaking out about people loading up on carbohydrates for a very specific purpose, for like a race.” He said, 150 grams of carbs on race day; they’re fat adapted leading into it, training and everything. But on race day, they eat that 150 grams of carbs, they're going to burn through it and they’re still going to be in higher ketosis than most people at the end of the race.

Diane Sanfilippo: Right.

Jimmy Moore: So I think this notion that they have to be just uber low in everybody is a mis-notion. Now, if you’re slothful and you sit around the house and you don’t really exercise a lot, and you’ve got major insulin resistance and you’re not really doing anything to mitigate those carbs, guess what? You’ve got to keep them really low.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. This is something that I know Robb Wolf has talked about this a bunch. He’s a huge advocate for low-carb and keto; he has been for years. So, very much like you, he’s been talking about this stuff as being therapeutic for a lot more than those who might want it for brain support. Which is really one of the places that a keto diet sort of originated, right? In treating seizure disorders or different types of epilepsy. And we can see some benefit in any type of neurological disorder; Parkinson’s, across the board. But I think the idea that much more active people can eat more carbs and still be burning fat for fuel is something that has maybe confused people. And it’s also the type of exercise that we’re doing.

Jimmy Moore: Right.

5. Who would best benefit from keto; or not [21:34]

Diane Sanfilippo: So, as Robb had talked about, and as you just mentioned; when you talk about something that’s going to be glycolytic, that is burning glycogen. Which is that stored form of carbohydrate. You can still get to this place where you’re burning fat for fuel; but you are still eating carbs. And there’s a different kind of balance. I’m really glad you brought that up, because there are also different populations that we both talk to, right? And you kind of alluded to that. The folks that we talk to here on this show, a lot of them are Crossfitters. Or they’re extremely active. And we see people accidentally going low-carb and not feeling great from it. Well maybe it’s because; we can talk about that topic too. Maybe it’s because they’re just dabbling, or they’re not kind of refueling after exercise, what have you. But who are the populations that you kind of talk to a lot? Who are the people for whom you see a ketogenic diet being extremely therapeutic; maybe it’s a great intervention at a super-low carb level, and then they can reintroduce carbs. Who does this really help, first and foremost? And then, who might it be a good idea for if they just want to dabble and see how they feel?

Jimmy Moore: So, to your point about the people who accidentally go low-carb. What happens is, they get stuck between a low-carb and a keto place. So that little area between just being low-carb, and truly being fully keto adapted. Which can take some time. It hurts. It’s hard. You’ve felt it, I know, Diane. You’ve gone through that yourself. We all have gone through the so-called keto flu. There are ways to mitigate that. But that’s where a lot of people get into the danger zone. And I only say danger, just because it’s uncomfortable. There’s really no harm that comes in it. But you don’t feel well, because you’re not quite using sugar for fuel, but you’re not quite in a ketogenic state. So your body is like, “Ahhh! I don’t know what to do.” Because there’s no fuel that’s really kind of taken over.

So who is this right for? That is the preeminent question. And I would say anybody that deals with some kind of a metabolic derangement, metabolic disorder, metabolic damage, whatever you want to call it. Insulin resistance is really at the key of all of it. And unfortunately, in our American society with the food abundance. I grew up on Froot Loops and Ding Dongs and Coca-Cola, and all those things.

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} Oh, me too. Yeah.

Jimmy Moore: Just constantly barraging your body with this crappy carbage, as I like to call it. It takes a toll, and some of us it took a bigger toll than others. And so I think those people that have type 2 diabetes; those people that have fasting blood sugar and insulin levels that are a little bit elevated; I think people that have higher inflammation levels and an hs-CRP or some other test like that. If you have high triglycerides. All of these things are clear signs that you’ve got some metabolic issues going on that a ketogenic diet has been well known in a lot of studies to bring under control. Does that mean it’s a magic pill for weight loss? Yeah right. If only. But it will put you in a metabolic state where if all of your markers come into like, weight loss should follow.

Diane Sanfilippo: So then the flipside of that would obviously be, for whom is this not, perhaps, a good approach?

Jimmy Moore: You know, I think people that are just obsessed about dieting, it’s a really bad place to be in when you view a ketogenic diet as, “Well I have to have this percentage of fat, and this percentage of protein, and this percentage of carbs. And if I go anywhere off-course on that, I’m not perfect!” So you just almost doom yourself to failure before you even start. It’s one of the reasons I’m working on a new book, just on this topic of kind of the self-love and putting your head right. It’s coming out in December, called Keto Freedom, with Meg Doll. And it’s so necessary.

I think sometimes people, they’re their own worst enemies. They get in the way of their own success because they psych themselves out that they have to do it a certain way. And even some people that say, “Well I have to have grass-fed beef.” You don’t really have to have. It’s really good to have, but it’s not a have to have. And I think when you have people that have that mentality of, “Everything has to be absolutely perfect.” Which is why I loved your article in paleo a few years back. It’s not about perfection. It’s about pursuit, and the pursuit of being as healthy as I possibly can be. Will you slip up from time to time? Yeah. But not everybody gives themselves that permission to slip up.

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6. Burning fat for fuel [25:44]

Diane Sanfilippo: Awesome. So I have a bunch of questions here that you touched on some of these topics in a couple of the previous answers here, but I want to do a little bit of circling back. Because what you mentioned before about being in this place between low-carb and keto. I think this is a place a lot of people are sitting in because oftentimes when folks go paleo, they end up going, or becoming what I call, an accidental low-carber. They didn’t realize how many carbs they were eating when they were eating grains; or maybe they do a 21-Day Sugar Detox, for example, and they cut out a lot of fruit. And now they’ve cut their carb grams way down. And they’re somewhere in the middle here. They’re somewhere in this place between just eating fewer carbs, but not quite to the place where they’re really burning fat for fuel.

So, the question here then, we’ve had this from a bunch of listeners. Do we need to be in ketosis in order to burn fat for fuel at all? If we’re not all the way there, is there any benefit to eating fewer carbs. What’s the story there?

Jimmy Moore: Yeah. Let’s be very clear; everybody, even Mr. Durian Rider, 30 bananas a day; every single person is burning both glucose and fat simultaneously. So what we are talking about is the preponderance of what’s going on. And again, from person to person, the same diet could produce a different preponderance of what that distribution of the sugar burning versus fat burning is. So in a CrossFitter that eats 150 grams of carbohydrates, they’re actually going to be pretty good fat burner, over 50% I would assume. Most of them that don’t have any metabolic damage. Where as someone who is pretty insulin resistant, and not quite as intense in the exercise. If they ate that exact same diet, they would be mostly a sugar burner.

So again; and this is going to be a theme song today, you guys. But it’s very highly, highly individualized to the person. You kind of have to customize it for you. You have to know where your tolerance levels are for all these things. So when these people accidentally go low-carb, they’re not realizing; “Oh my gosh, I’m lowish in carbs, but I’m not quite keto, and I haven’t become keto adapted. I need to go fully that way and really get going with that, and letting the fat become the primary fuel source. Or, I can choose very strategically to add carbs in.” Post workout, pre-workout, whatever to help with that energy and you still can burn fat pretty efficiently.

So I think to say across the board that, “This is the way to be mostly fat burning.” It would difficult. It would be impossible for me to do that for all persons. But for most of your audience, it sounds like if they’re going pretty hard at the gym, they're going to get most of the benefits of being in a fat adapted state, even eating these extra carbs.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And I think what you’re describing; and this is something I know Robb has talked a lot about in his work. Because he has done powerlifting and CrossFit for a long time, and then jujitsu. And there’s all different kinds of training. So personally, right now, if I do mostly strength training, I feel great eating very low carb most of the time. And I do typically have one day where I’ll eat some more carbs, and that’s it. And that seems to work for me. And I’m going to be testing it starting in a couple of days. We’ll get into that in just a second.

But I think that’s such a great point for our listeners. You wake up in a fat burning state, and appropriate your carbohydrate intake around your exercise; this is not new information, we’ve been talking about this for years. Because that is a situation where the exercise in and of itself is helping you to burn through that glycogen storage. Especially if you're doing high intensity interval training, or if you’re doing something like a race. And that’s really different from what I call standing around picking up heavy things and putting them back down. Which is mostly how I train these days. Where I just don’t have to worry about it. But I mostly don’t tap into that glycogen. I’m really mostly doing stuff that’s more fat based.

So, it’s almost like a pass to be able to eat more carbohydrates for the folks who are in that situation, and still be able to burn fat at other points in time. Because also with exercise, we get some non-insulin mediated glucose transport, which is right after exercise. You’re pulling glucose into the cells more rapidly without the need for insulin. That’s the huge benefit of exercise, just for our health. That, you know, aside from muscle building, aside from any cardiovascular benefit, that the point of exercise on blood sugar, the benefit for it, is really just being able to pull that sugar in.

7. How to know when you're in ketosis [30:44]

Diane Sanfilippo: So, I think this is just a really good conversation. Because our listeners; this is what they need to hear. That they don’t all need to be eating 30 grams of carbs a day to potentially be in ketosis. Now here’s the thing. How do they know? How do we know if we’re in ketosis? What are the signs? What should we be testing?

Jimmy Moore: And by the way, when the sugar is pushed into the cells, guess what happens in the blood? Ketones go up. So that’s another beautiful part of exercise that people often forget. That exercise itself actually is a ketone booster. So definitely is going to be a help.

So how do you test? That’s a great question, Diane Sanfilippo. Traditionally there have been 3 tests now that are out there. The most popular one that people know about are keto sticks. You pee on the stick, it turns pink to purple; yeah, whatever. It’s highly, highly unreliable after about 2 weeks. So if you want to use those for a couple of weeks, great. But the things that happens is you get keto adapted; by the way, that’s called acetoacetate in the urine.

So the thing is, when you become keto adapted within about 2 to 4 weeks for most people, if you’re relatively low-carb, you might get in even less than a week. I got in in 4 days. So you need to know that it goes into the blood at that point. So acetoacetate gets converted into beta-hydroxybuterate. So the BHB then becomes the primary source of energy in your body. Now, it’s like testing your cholesterol, testing really anything. Your blood sugar. It’s a snapshot in time of what’s happening in the blood at that very moment. So what you find is a number somewhere between 0.5 and 3.0 for most people that are burning fat for fuel pretty efficiently. You can go higher than 3.0; you can obviously go lower than 0.5. But you're trying to shoot for between 0.5 and 3.0

Now what I find, and I’ve done this a very long time now. I find that I fall somewhere between 0.87 and 1.5 pretty regularly. So that means I’m burning it pretty efficiently. And I have found that when you first start, you actually see higher ketone readings; like really high blood ketones reading early on. And then as the body gets used to; “Oh, what’s this new substance that I’m using for energy?” Then it falls into a pattern. Dr. Adam Nally, my Keto Talk cohost, he’s right there at 0.8 to 1.2 pretty much all the time, as well. And he’s done this a very long time.

So then the last way you can test, the one that you got recently, called a Ketonix. That device will actually measure the acetone that’s in the breath. Now, acetone doesn’t line up perfectly with the beta-hydroxybuterate in the blood, but it’s a good proxy. Again, it’s an excretion, kind of like the urine would be. But it doesn’t disappear like the urine ketone does. Acetone stays in the breath. And it gives you a good yes or no answer; “Am I burning fat for fuel efficiently or am I not?” So generally if you’re blowing yellow or red on the Ketonix, you’re burning pretty good fat for fuel. I stay in the red when I fast. So I know, “Ok, I’m doing really good on the fast.” But I also test blood and I can see I have a 3.4. So, ok, yeah, that’s really good. So those are the ways that you test. The most economical is the urine sticks. The most accurate is the blood test. The best of both worlds is the breath test.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And for me, since I’m not looking for this uber clinical approach at this point. I just want to know, “am I burning fat for fuel?” And, I didn’t really know if I felt like doing a blood test, finger prick.

Jimmy Moore: Wimp, wimp.

Diane Sanfilippo: I know it’s not a big deal. When I was doing the glucose testing. And I did do the blood ketone testing years ago. Probably the second or third time I did keto I did the blood testing, and I was definitely there. So, you know, the reason why I come back to a certain number of carbs, is I just know how that feels for me. And I also know that it allows me to eat a good amount of vegetable matter without wiggle room for other stuff that kind of doesn’t feel good. And I have had the experience where; I know the point of this is we test so that we truly know. But also, if you’re the type of person who typically would feel hangry between meals, and you really get to that point. You know, I believe in testing, but I also believe in listening to your body so hardcore. Especially for people who are like, “Well I just can’t be spending more money on testing materials.”

Jimmy Moore: Right.

Diane Sanfilippo: You can feel a difference, when you get to the point where, instead of in 3 hours you’re hungry it’s 6 hours and you’re like; oh, I didn’t even eat recently. Or even just 4, and you’re just not hungry again. Because most people are hungry every 2 or 3. So getting that extension before you feel like, “Whoa, I better eat something.” That’s a huge upside. And that’s actually one of the reasons why I’ve come back to it, to give it a whirl again this time. Because I just felt like after a couple of years doing some different things, it felt like my appetite is out of control. I’m just hungry all the time, and this is really annoying, frankly. I have better things to do with my time than eat all the time {laughs}. I just need to get some things done.

But I do want to encourage people on that. And I think your point about testing; there’s no replacement for that. There are some qualitative answers there, as well.

Jimmy Moore: And even if you don’t want to prick your finger, you don’t want to blow into a device, you don’t want to be gross and pee on a stick; there are definitely things you can feel about it. For me, Diane, it’s the brain health benefits that you get when your ketones are at a certain level. And I found this when I did my fasting. I did a fasting book last year, called The Complete Guide to Fasting. And I did a lot of interviews, like 12 days into a fast. And I was on people’s podcasts. People are like; “Wow, you’re so lucid!” And I’m like, “It’s the ketones.” The brain health just goes on fire, and I think people devalue that benefit. Everybody looks; weight loss, no hunger.

Which, by the way, in Keto Clarity we call that ability to go many hours between meals your keto fitness level. So if you’re only able to go a couple of hours, your keto fitness level ain’t very good. But if you can go 6, 8, 10, 12, 16 hours, and not really be hungry, you're really rocking the ketones. Because your body can’t physiologically do that unless you're truly burning fat for fuel. That’s how you're being sustained, your own stored body fat becomes your fuel source during those times when you're not eating.

Some other things, some people say they have kind of a feeling on the tongue, that you can taste that you’ve got ketones. Some people say they’ve got a metallic taste. I’ve never tasted metallic. So there are all kinds of little things like that. And just energy levels. One of my friends is Stephanie Person, so she always goes on her videos, and she’s like, “Energy, energy, energy!” And she’s like a big keto advocate. So it’s amazing that energy that does come. So if you're fatigued and lethargic, you're probably not quite in a ketogenic state. So there’s something going on in what you’re doing.

8. Timeframe for trying out keto [38:20]

Diane Sanfilippo: Love it. So, you mentioned this situation where folks are low-carb but not quite keto. And I think that’s a really common one. And it’s like not quite keto for you; I think that’s part of it, right. I mentioned on a video that I did that I’m eating this 35 grams. The people to take that to mean that’s what is keto, and that’s not what I’m saying. So it’s like, part 2 and part 3; and there will be more parts for me to explain it further.

But, how long do people; you mentioned 2 to 4 weeks earlier. But how long should someone maybe try and stick with this; or maybe not should. What’s a good recommendation for how long to stick with keto, and also tinkering before deciding if it’s right for them or not? Because I know you mentioned some of the mindset stuff. But there might be other folks for whom this approach just physiologically maybe it’s not right for them. For whatever reason. So how long is a good amount of time to kind of give it, knowing that we want them to tinker within that time. It’s not, I robotically only eat 30 grams of carbs for this many weeks, and whatever.

Jimmy Moore: I think that’s where testing comes into play. I think if you’re testing your blood sugar, and you're testing your blood ketones, and you’re seeing quantifiable improvements in both. So let’s say your blood sugar gets down into regularly the 80s; maybe even the 70s, and you see blood ketones at 1.5, 2.5, whatever. And you’re seeing that over a period of time, and yet you still feel horrible; there’s something else going on.

But what happens is a lot of people simply cut their carbs, and don’t really try to be ketogenic, and they’re stuck between a low-carb and a keto place, again, and they’re not feeling great but they’re not in ketosis. That’s the major mistake a lot of people make, Diane. They assume they’re keto simply because they cut their carbs. And yet you have to test to know. So I think if you're quantifying it for a period of time just to see what that feels like, and you’re seeing good levels of ketones and good levels of blood sugar, and you still feel like crap; you probably need to give it no more than 90 days and say; “Ok, that was fun but I’m going to move onto something else.”

Whereas, if you did it for 90 days and you never really tested, and you don’t really know you were fat adapted, you can’t really say ketogenic didn’t work for you because you don’t know for sure that you actually did ketogenic.

Diane Sanfilippo: You didn’t really work it. {laughs}

Jimmy Moore: Got to work it.

Diane Sanfilippo: You know what’s funny? I wonder if; I’m good at wondering. I wonder if the reason why people might not feel good in that in between state is that basically you’re almost in this under-fed state. Because you're attempting to push yourself to burn fat for fuel, but you kind of never really get there. So you’re almost like sitting there feeling maybe hungry, and thinking your body is able to get fat for fuel, but it’s not really. So you might be kind of stressing your body out, because you're letting yourself be hungry but you can’t actually access that fat. So then you end up being under-fed because your body can’t access the fat, and you're not giving it food. So now your body is actually hungry, and it’s kind of pissed off.

Jimmy Moore: Or even worse, think about it this way. If you're still a sugar burner, which most people started this as a sugar burner, and you haven’t quite gotten to the fat and ketone burner, and you’re, like you said, kind of giving it just enough carbs to stoke the sugar burner flame but not quite move over to the fat burner flame, it’s not an under-eating of total food, per se, but it’s an undereating of the glucose. Because your body is like; “Hey, you’re still a sugar burner. You’ve got to feed me sugar.”

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah.

Jimmy Moore: So I think the body probably will rebel, even try to take some of it from your muscle if you’re not careful about it. Which is why crap or get off the pot; you’ve got to be one or the other. Don’t play both sides and think you’re going to be sugar/fat burner. You’re going to be either a sugar burner, the preponderance, or a fat burner. You’ve got to give that time. In the in between time, I think that’s where something like exogenous ketones could help. Or you’re kind of stuck between that period of time between being a sugar burner and a fat burner, and you want to give your body a boost of something that it recognizes as a fuel substrate; that’s where exogenous ketones can be a powerful modality for that.

Diane Sanfilippo: And we do have questions on that. And what you mentioned, too, about it’s not necessarily food, but it’s this idea that the body is looking for glucose. That’s kind of what I meant. When I said under-fed, I’m thinking physiologically inside your body is like; we’re trying to access something for energy, and we’re looking for glucose, and you took it low but we just never got to that ketone burning state. Or fueled state.

9. Exogenous ketones [43:20]

Diane Sanfilippo: So, let’s talk about the exogenous ketones. Because this is such a hot topic. People are like, “Why am I seeing it everywhere?” I mean, I have my theories on why you’re seeing it everywhere. Because there are a lot of businesses built around it. And that’s fine. I don’t have anything against that.

Jimmy Moore: And keto is popular now, and it wasn’t as popular a couple of years ago.

Diane Sanfilippo: So many reasons. Exactly. It’s really come to the forefront. So let’s talk about the different types of exogenous ketones. What do they do? Who are they perhaps beneficial for? And in what situations are we saying, this is probably not a good idea? People are just not using this stuff in perhaps the most ideal way.

Jimmy Moore: So, exogenous ketones. They’ve kind of come on strong in the past year or so, and like you said, a lot of businesses are kind of popping up. I’m associated with a couple of them. I won’t name any names, because there are a lot of companies out there that are doing it this time of year, and they’re really coming on strong. There are at least a dozen more that I know that are coming in the next couple of years. So it’s really fascinating.

But the thing is, this isn’t brand new. I actually spoke with someone on the Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb show 5 years ago about this coming. And he’s like; “Oh, yeah. There’s this thing where you can put exogenous sources of ketones inside the body and get all the benefits of ketosis.” And I’m like, “That sounds silly. Why would you do that, when you can do it endogenously just eating a low carb, moderate protein, high fat diet?” So anyway, now they’re here.

So who are they right for? I think they’re right for people who struggle to get into ketosis. So those people we were talking about earlier, between a low-carb and a keto place. Maybe as a bridge between those times, it gives you those effects, so your body doesn’t quite freak out as much. And even some people that, for whatever reason, they’re just not quite there. Or they want a little more wiggle room in their diet. So maybe some of these crossfitters that are adding in more carbs to fuel their workouts, and they want to get some of the benefits of the ketones as well. Adding this in to the routine, maybe pre-workout would give them a huge boost. All kinds of people are doing these 5 Hour Energy, and Monster drinks, and Red Bull. Maybe this is an option as an energy drink. A truly energy drink that would not give them a lot of chemical junk, as well.

So who else could it help? I think people that therapeutically want to get ketones much higher. Cancer patients, Alzheimer’s disease; really anybody with a chronic metabolic disease could see helpfulness from these exogenous ketones.

What I don’t like about the exogenous ketones is some of the marketing. Because some of these companies are saying, “We’ll put you in ketosis in less than an hour!” And, “You can eat all the carbs you want!” and I just want to slap people upside the head. I actually spoke at one of these conferences at one of these companies; again, I will not name the name. But I said very emphatically; “You’ve got to stop that.” Because that is not cool. I think the basis of all of this is eating a low-carb, moderate protein, high fat diet to those parameters that are right for you, and if you want to use this as an adjunct to your keto diet, that’s where you’re going to see the best benefits. Don’t tell people to eat Krispy Kreme donuts, and then have exogenous ketones and think they’re doing something good for their body.

Diane Sanfilippo: Mm-hmm. Quick follow-up on that; what place does MCT oil have in all of this? Does it sort of work as that same type of thing? What is the supplementation of MCT oil doing? Medium-chain triglyceride.

Jimmy Moore: How is it different than exogenous ketones?

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. Or how does that work, and what’s a place for that?

Jimmy Moore: It’s an indirect ketone booster. So basically medium-chain triglycerides are the precursor to ketones. So when you consume MCT oil; and I love the Brain Octane Fuel from Dave Asprey. I have that stuff from time to time when I need a quick boost of energy. And it will increase your ketones. But I call it almost a baby exogenous ketone. Because it’s an indirect. It doesn’t immediately go into the blood sugar and become ketones. Whereas a lot of these exogenous ketones, it’s literally beta-hydroxybuterate salt that are going directly into the blood sugar and they stay in the blood sugar for probably 2 to 3 hours. Whereas the MCT oil maybe lasts 4, 5, 6 hours. Again, I guess it would differ from person to person, that’s just my personal experience with them. But they’re not the same thing. I know Dave would say, “Oh yeah, just have my MCT oil and you’ll have all the exogenous ketones you want.” Not exactly. They’re not exactly the same thing.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah. And we also have skinny fat. Some of these other; MCT oil has been around for a long time. Again, in the bodybuilding world. Literally, the bodybuilders are sitting around laughing at us.

Jimmy Moore: They’re the trendsetters.

Diane Sanfilippo: Well; maybe not. They’ve been talking about this a long time. But they really have. Look; if there’s anything any of us are talking about with nutrition and hormones and modulating any type of physiological response to nutrition, they have been talking about it for longer than we have. Anything. Whatever we can think of next, they’re like, “Old news. Next.” It’s kind of hilarious.

But the point that you brought up about the exogenous ketones that I think is another sort of makes me wonder point, question. The reason why adding the exogenous ketones into a diet with a lot of carbohydrates, maybe it can have some sort of bio-hacky positive effects. Which I’m not a biohacker, so any of that stuff to me is like; “Can we stop hacking nature, please? Can we just let it be what it’s supposed to be?”

Jimmy Moore: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: I mean, could my eyeroll be any bigger right now. You can see my face. I’m really not into biohacking. I mean, maybe this is biohacking light, you know. Just doing something to modulate my body’s response. But anyway. Point being; it’s not natural to be eating carbohydrates and have this responsive insulin and have glucose coming into the body, and have a high level of ketones. That’s just not what “should” be happening in the body physiologically. So I think that’s kind of where the mismatch is on dumping ketones in with a ton of carbs.

Jimmy Moore: Right. And you would run into the risk; and we haven’t seen this studied yet, and haven’t heard any case studies about it yet. But I wouldn’t be surprised if somebody abuses the exogenous ketone product, and says, “Oh, I can eat all the carbs I want,” that’s a little bit insulin resistant. They push their blood sugar up well over 240 mg per deciliter, and then they’re taking these exogenous ketones, which may have a glucose lowering effect slightly, but not that much. And it would raise the level of ketones in the blood. We know the simultaneous presence of high blood sugar and high blood ketones is a very acidic state. There’s actually a condition called ketoacidosis. Which is only supposed to happen in type 1 diabetics who can’t make insulin. But if you’re force-feeding this, you’ve got to be careful with it. Which is why I’m a huge advocate of exogenous ketones, but only within the context of eating low-carb, moderate protein, high fat ketogenic.

Diane Sanfilippo: Yes.

Jimmy Moore: Yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: Not a magic bullet, not a magic pill/powder. Most of them come in powder form. I think that’s really important for people to know. And look; we’re not about drawing lines in the sand and be like, “Never use these things!” There are places for them. And I just think that’s a great point. It’s important to note what some of the major downsides could be if you’re trying to do this in a very unnatural way, which is what I think that would be.

Jimmy Moore: But that said about exogenous ketones; I will tell you. On days I’m a little more stressed, or maybe I have less sleep where I know my ketones are going to tank just from the lifestyle issues, apart from the diet, I’ll take some exogenous ketones and it gives me that boost. I just had some 3 hours ago. So it will give you that boost, where maybe you’re not feeling quite well. I had a speaking gig last night, so I got in really late. And I was tired this morning. So it helps in specific targeted instances. And I think using it in that way is the proper way to use it.

10. Benefits of ketosis [52:00]

Diane Sanfilippo: Yeah, that’s interesting. Because we know when we don’t sleep enough, we also can become a bit insulin resistant, and so it just changes what’s going on with our metabolism when we’re not getting proper sleep. And there are so many factors here. I think; I just have so many thoughts about what I know our listeners are thinking. Because they’re looking at this way of eating as another magic bullet. Or it’s the next thing after paleo. Well now I want to do keto. And it’s fine. It’s fair to think, “Let me tinker with this. Let me try this and see how I feel.” I just don’t want people to walk away thinking that what they’re doing isn’t “good enough”. Or assume that it’s not working for them, just because this other way exists.

I think a lot of times people; somehow just assume that things they’re doing are wrong or not good enough. This is just the assumption. Or that if something different exists, it must be better. Or if it’s better for some people, it’s probably also better for me. It’s just a lot of assumptions, and I don’t want listeners to feel like just because this exists as a way, and just because it’s a way to get your body in a fat burning state that it’s the only way to burn fat or it’s the only way to eat. Those things are not true. It’s certainly not true that this is the only way to burn fat and the only way to lose weight. Since I know so many people are just wanting to do it to lose weight. It’s not the only way to do it.

And honestly, even if you try this and do it for a while and lose some weight, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to last for forever if your mindset really isn’t in the right place about just figuring out how this feels for you, what the lifestyle is like, what the food choices are like, how does this affect your family life. Is it really hard on the family, and could something that’s a little different of a balance just be easier for you to do? It’s just so many factors. So I think it’s important to think of all of that before you just sweepingly hear everybody talking about keto, and think, well I “should” be doing that because it’s good for a lot of people.

Jimmy Moore: If your primary purpose in going keto is to lose weight, no. I don’t even see that as ketogenic diets primary benefit. I think all the health gain properties of ketosis; the hunger going away, the blood sugar regulation, the insulin regulation, the inflammation lowering. All of those things. The brain health benefits. All of the things that we’ve been talking about here today are a whole lot more interesting. And what’s fascinating, is people like to focus on weight loss because culture has told us to focus on weight loss; thank you, Biggest Loser. And all of these images that women have to look a certain way. Men, you have to have 6-pack abs. And I think that is what drives people to constantly be looking for the next big thing.

I remember when Atkins was really big in the early 2000s; everybody was like, well I just eat meat, eggs, and cheese. Well, that was not the Atkins diet, but they were doing the media version of it. We’re seeing that now with paleo. “I’ll just eat the paleo diet.” So they’re making up what it is. And I would say, find what works for you and stick with it. That’s been my motto since I started my blog many years ago; just find what works for you.

I think sometimes people, like you said, they’re looking for that newest greatest thing. What’s interesting about keto; it ain’t new. It’s actually been out there well over 150 years with William Banting. 100 years when you codify it, when it actually became a term in 1921. The ketogenic diet was out there for epilepsy control. This isn’t new. I’m not reinventing the wheel. I didn’t with Keto Clarity and all these keto books that are getting out there. But I do think it’s a powerful modality for people to try if you think it’s something that you want to try and I obviously am a huge advocate of doing it as a real food-based paleo. I like to say I’m primaleo ketogenic. So I’m primal, because I can eat a little bit of dairy and still be ok; raw dairy. And I’m paleo for the real food aspect. And ketogenic for the obvious reasons.

Liz Wolfe: The Balanced Bites podcast is sponsored in part by the Nutritional Therapy Association. The NTA trains and certifies nutritional therapy practitioners and consultants (including me; I’m an NTP), emphasizing bio-individuality and the range of dietary strategies that support wellness. The NTA emphasizes local, whole, properly prepared nutrient dense foods as the key to restoring balance and enhancing the body’s ability to heal. Nutritional therapy practitioners and consultants learn a wide range of tools and techniques to assess and correct nutritional imbalances. To learn lots more about the nutritional therapy program, go to There are workshop venues in the US, Canada, and Australia, so chances are you’ll be able to find a venue that works for you.

11. Healthy from the inside [57:12]

Diane Sanfilippo: I like that. And I’m glad, also, that in your journey you transitioned from the mindset of low-carb or keto and not combining that with maybe all just real food year and years ago. And you know, we all learn more, we all change what we’re doing based on things that we learn, and that’s really the sign of a thinking person who is using their brain and critically thinking.

I do think, too, that the place for this approach, a lot of us; like you mentioned a while ago. We were raised on foods that maybe we didn’t “break” our metabolism to the point where from the outside other people would look at us and; I know you’ve talked about this a lot with different weight fluctuations that you’ve had. And maybe we can just tap on that before we; I’m talking about a phone. “Tap on this on your phone.” Before we close out.

But somebody might not look at me. I’ve never been 100 pounds overweight. But I’ve definitely been 30 to 40 pounds heavier than I am now. And I think that my body has gone through times of just being mini-broken. Where I don’t think I do that well longer term with a lot more carbohydrates. I just think in general, I tend to feel better with eating less carbohydrate. And for a variety of reasons, it feels good for me. I just think that everybody needs to get to a place where you kind of sit with what you're doing and feel it, and not just kind of push through it and eat the thing because this is what you’re supposed to do. That’s what I just said. I don’t know; I just think we’re not sitting and just feeling whatever it is that’s happening, and then making a critical decision for ourselves based on that. Because we’re so inundated with, like you said, all the words and all the diets and all that stuff. How does it feel, how does it work for you? And how does it work for your physically as well as lifestyle wise? I think that is such a big part of it.

So let’s just close out on that topic. There are a lot of people who are hoping this will help them to lose weight. And I know you mentioned that the benefits far exceed weight loss or even fat loss, even when fat loss may be a result. Or a benefit. What are some of the other really big benefits besides mental clarity, as you noted. Which I think it’s funny; Cholesterol Clarity, Keto Clarity. There’s a little second meaning there. You get a lot of clarity with that.

Jimmy Moore: We were going to call Fasting Fasting Clarity but then we ended up changing it. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: Oh. I do like the Complete Guide to Fasting. That’s a good title.

Jimmy Moore: Yeah. It was much better.

Diane Sanfilippo: But I know you’ve had health markers. You used to be on tons of medications before you changed your diet. So what are those big changes you’ve seen in your health? Because you’ve tried a lot of different things, including fasting. Which I’m glad that we’ve brought up, because we are going to bring Dr. Jason Fung onto the show. Just, what has improved with your health and what has that looked like in terms of what does result on a scale or not?

Jimmy Moore: So what’s interesting is my weight has fluctuated. I’m currently at a higher weight than I would like. And I think a lot of people devalue the non-diet reasons you can gain weight. We talked about a few of them; the sleep. Stress is a biggie for me. I find that if you’re insulin resistant, you’re also stress resistant. So your body responds to stress as if you had a big old chocolate cake. And I’ve seen it. I’ve seen it on the blood sugar monitor. I’ve seen the ketones die bigger than anything. So those things matter. And I think getting all of those lifestyle issues under control, in conjunction with a ketogenic diet, is so important. But the benefits that have happened to me, despite having the extra weight, Diane. My triglycerides have stayed well under 100. That’s a huge metabolic marker of really robust health. HDL cholesterol has always been above 50. My inflammation markers; this is one I’m pretty proud of. Because without inflammation, you really can’t have chronic disease. My inflammation stays under 1.0 on the hs-CRP. Almost all the time. Despite being what people would look on the outside; “oh, you’re not healthy.” Oh yeah? You want to see all my blood markers?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughs} I’ll show you my blood.

Jimmy Moore: Exactly. I want a little LED across.

Diane Sanfilippo: I’ll show you mine, you show me yours, mister skinny from the outside. Let me see your blood work.

Jimmy Moore: We’ve got blood tests, yes we do! We’ve got blood tests, how about you?

Diane Sanfilippo: {laughing}

Jimmy Moore: So fasting insulin has shown a little bit of sign of creeping up a little bit, so I’m watching that one. But then blood sugar levels are in the 90s pretty regularly. But when I’m hardcore keto, and fasting, and doing those kind of things, I can bring that down into the 80s and 70s.

And some of these particle size tests of the LDL; the small-dense LDL is really low. And just the general feeling of huge energy. I mean, if I was in this really sick, diseased state as a 45-year-old man, I don’t think I could get out in the yard and throw all that mulch around if I wasn’t at least a little bit active and something good happening on the inside. So it’s what I hold onto despite the weight being a stubborn you-know-what. I still know that my health is probably better than most of the population.

Diane Sanfilippo: I love it. I really think, in this time of social media, and images. It’s not like social media is the first and only time that we’ve been bombarded by images of what is ideal in terms of physical appearance. I think remembering that our physiological health; what’s happening in our blood work, our energy levels. I mean, don’t we want to wake up and have tons of energy? That is one of the reasons why I’m eating this way now. One of the reasons why I’m working with a naturopath now. To just dig in; why do I feel tired? And one of the reasons could have been the amount of carbs I’m eating. Maybe it’s not right for me, so I’m taking this approach and seeing what happens.

And I’m glad that you talk about it. I really don’t want this community of holistic health and wellness folks and practitioners; I don’t want people to be stuck in this, “If you don’t look a certain way then you must not know what you’re talking about,” mindset. I just think that that is dangerous. And I think it’s understandable. It’s hard for some people to conceive of the fact that somebody not, perhaps, looking whatever is ideal to them. It’s hard for people to understand how they might healthier than you on the inside. But our bodies deal with all of these insults very differently. And there are plenty of people out there who, from the outside, look a “normal, healthy weight” and their triglycerides are screaming. And their level of inflammation is through the roof. And they’re a ticking time bomb for what’s going to happen and when it’s going to happen. We don’t know. But that’s where “mysterious illness” of younger people sometimes. It’s not that mysterious; because look at what they were eating. They probably weren’t doing things that were in line with what we’re talking about.

And I’m not saying that there aren’t things that crop up that are totally genetic. This is not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about folks who, you know they’re not eating well. It’s just not showing up on their belly or their thighs. But it’s in their blood. And I’ve known many people like that who looked “fit and healthy” from the outside, and triglycerides over 200. And that’s what we’re after, here. We’re really after making healthier people from the inside out.

Jimmy Moore: Well said.

Diane Sanfilippo: Awesome. Thank you so much for taking time to chat with me about this. What our listeners don’t know.

Jimmy Moore: They don’t know! {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: This was not only take two; this was take two, but jimmy was so gracious. Because when we first were supposed to record this, the entire city of San Francisco had a power outage, which was obviously out of my hands.

Jimmy Moore: {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: I felt really badly having to say, “Sorry Jimmy, we don’t have power.” It just sounded like such an excuse. And then about an hour later, it was national news. I was like, “See! I told you! I can’t even go somewhere.” Not that you can record out of your home or wherever your studio is. You can’t just pull up at a Starbucks. I mean you could. And start recording.

Jimmy Moore: I hate those people. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: Our third time scheduling, but we did this because we know our listeners are so geeked out on this topic right now, so thank you so much for scheduling this with me three times. I actually stole a timeslot from my husband. He was supposed to have you on his show.

Jimmy Moore: Yeah, this was Scott’s time slot.

Diane Sanfilippo: But he’s so generous. And we’re recording;

Jimmy Moore: See how much I love you, Diane!

Diane Sanfilippo: And we’re recording on my birthday! What a gift to me.

Jimmy Moore: ON your birthday too? I know, right?

Diane Sanfilippo: I know. So thank you so much. You guys. What’s the best website that folks can find you at?

Jimmy Moore: is kind of a splash page of literally all my stuff. All my books, podcasts, everything is there. But if you just Google Jimmy Moore; I don’t know how this happened, but if you just Google Jimmy Moore, you will find all my stuff on the first couple of pages of Google.

Diane Sanfilippo: I know how it happened.

Jimmy Moore: It just means I’ve been out there forever is all it means. {laughs}

Diane Sanfilippo: You’ve been consistently creating content for many, many years.

Jimmy Moore: Yes.

Diane Sanfilippo: Awesome. So that’s it for this week you guys. You can find me, Diane, at And as Jimmy mentioned, over at

Jimmy Moore: Thank you very much.

Comments 3

  1. Hi Diane! I have eaten keto before but I have a tough time mentally sticking with it. I feel restricted and start to get worried if I eat yam or pumpkin. I am fairly active. My body also holds on to fat. I literally cannot lose any weight unless I eat keto… so as soon as I take a break from ketosis, my body gains all of the weight back. I have seen multiple doctors and had so many blood tests I lost count. I bought your book and I absolutely love it. After listening to this podcast, I am so worried that I’m going to be right at the level in between ketosis and paleo lower carb… How do you find a balance!? Experimenting?

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