Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Introducing The Daily Lipid... Wait For It... PODCAST! Episodes 1, 2, and 3 are now live!

I'm excited to announce that with this post I am launching The Daily Lipid PODCAST!

The Daily Lipid Podcast with Chris Masterjohn

Here are episodes 1, 2, and 3:

I would love it if you could give me feedback by heading to ITunes, subscribing, and leaving me a rating and review. If I get a positive response, I'll begin releasing more content on Thursday.

Here are the shownotes for the first three episodes.

001: Coffee

I'm starting the podcast with coffee, because I start my day with coffee.

Why I drink coffee and won't apologize for it, but why I'm skeptical of the large body of literature associating coffee consumption with reduced disease risk. 

Do we drink coffee by choice? Sort of. I discuss why our genes may play a role in our coffee consumption and may be the ultimate influence on the risk of diseases that ultimately cannot be changed by coffee consumption.

Research on coffee's association with health and disease

Genetic polymorphisms related to coffee consumption: Rs2472297, Rs4410790, Rs762551

How to Do a Proper Self-Experiment and Why Your "n" Doens't Technically Equal 1 (How to do a randomized controlled trial on yourself)

002: As the Cholesterol Consensus Crumbles, the Stance Against Saturated Fat Softens

Is it really true that saturated fatty acids (SFAs) are the "bad fats" and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are the "good fats"? 

Christopher Ramsden uncovered previously unpublished data undermining the conventional wisdom that we should replace saturated fats with polyunsaturated vegetable oils to lower cholesterol and prevent heart disease. 

The public health establishment dismissed the findings. Here's my take.

For links to related references, see my associated blog post

003: The Sugar Conspiracy -- Trading One Nutritional Boogeyman for Another

In his April 7, 2016 piece in The Guardian, "The Sugar Conspiracy" Ian Leslie argues that the politics of nutrition has blinded us to the fact that sugar is more deserving than saturated fat of the status of dietary arch-villain and that the politics continue but the status of sugar and saturated fat are starting to switch.

But we need to move beyond nutritional boogeymen, not switch one for another. 

Our sense of history and physiology -- key concepts about the historical role of Ancel Keys, the rate at which sugar is converted to fat in a process called de novo lipogenesis, and whether insulin's stimulation of fat storage can offer a plausible explanation of obesity -- get distorted when we try to make a public enemy out of sugar, just as they do when we make a public enemy out of saturated fat.
It's time for a more nuanced view.

Related links:  


  1. Love the podcast! Do you have a Patreon? I'd like to support your work and I'm sure a considerable effort goes into these podcasts.

    On the subject of coffee, I have the SNP for fast metaboliser of coffee but I suddenly became intolerant to coffee 5 years ago. It was during a time of stress and undereating. But now that I'm healthy again I have not recovered my caffeine tolerance even through I have tried again and again to build it up.

    Any ideas as to why this would happen? I miss coffee!

    1. Hi SamAbroad,

      Thanks! I don't have a Patreon and didn't know about it until you mentioned it. I'll check it out when I can.

      Very interesting anecdote. It may have been that the stress was hurting your detoxification of caffeine, or it could have been that your body was fighting the effects of caffeine to try to maintain sleep pressure. Caffeine opposes the action of adenosine as its primary mechanism of action, and adenosine is the primary signal of sleep pressure and accumulates from lack of sleep. So, if the body is threatened by lack of sleep relative to cumulative stress, it might compensate for the inhibitory effect of caffeine through some uncomfortable mechanisms, but I don't know exactly what those mechanisms would be.

      Thanks for sharing!


  2. Are you planning on also uploading your podcasts on stitcher for your non Apple loving fans?

    1. I applied to stitcher and Android App today. Not sure how long it will take. Thanks for the feedback!


  3. "I would love it if you could give me feedback by heading to ITunes, subscribing, and leaving me a rating and review."

    Let's see Chris. Love ya, BUT:
    1. iTunes? NO
    2. Subscribe to iTunes? NO
    3. Leaving me a rating and review on iTunes? NO

    If I have to deal with iTunes nonsense, then I'm just going to skip your wonderful podcast. And that's a dang shame.

    Can you please just put up an mp3 file to download from your blogger blog?


    1. I'm working on increasing the diversity of options but it will take some time to evolve. Thanks for the feedback.


  4. Hi, hope you bring your podcast over to Stitcher. iTunes causes listeners to download the episodes and hogs up mobile memory, Stitcher allows listeners to stream instead. I avoid iTunes because of this.

    1. I applied to stitcher today, but that isn't true of the iOS Podcast app (which is more or less "itunes" for podcasts on the iphone). The iOS podcast app gives you the choice between downloading and listening.

  5. Hi Chris and thanks for the podcasts.. Gone through the coffee one and loved the simple yet informative content, its ideal length (covering most of my 30min cardiovascular session) and the tone. If anything, also having read most of your scientific posts and monographs (cannot wait for the other releases), maybe you could mention a little more scientific data in addition to personal experience?
    Also, I wonder if your conclusions would apply to pretty much any food component or drug.. With more and more evidence on the individuality of response due to genetics, epigenetics and more, shall we not regard fat consumption, fat type, carbs intake, fibers and protein and so on on an individual basis? And how would you then assess long-term effects? You mentioned that if coffee makes you feel good, then have it.. But what about the long term effects? I bet everyone feels good with a chocolate ganache after dinner, but then we think about what we know of the health consequences of regular high sugars intake and try to moderate ourselves (some of us at least..). What's your thought on that? Cheers and please keep it up!!

    1. Hi Matteo,

      Some of them will have more data, others less. Some will be short anecdotes, thoughts, some more rigorous analysis.

      I think nutritional genomics and individualization of approach is the wave of the future. I don't think "if it feels good do it" is a universal principle, but I think in the case of coffee the body of literature mostly suggests good positive effects, but I put little trust in it for the reasons I stated. But if the evidence is weak and leans in the positive direction, then it is hard to argue against "if it feels good do it" in this particular case.


  6. I think the problem is not sugar per se, but the fact that we have an almost unlimited supply of it, in highly concentrated forms, available everywhere we go. Just for that it deserves to be treated as an arch-villain.

  7. I found it! Download links are at http://thedailylipid.libsyn.com/

  8. Ah, you do realize that arsenic is a natural component of food, for example rice? Botulism toxin is also a natural component of food and even the best foods consumed in large enough quantities such as liver can cause iron toxicity amongst other problems.

    People did take arsenic to lighten their skin like Madam X (Madame Pierre Gautreau)
    whose picture hangs in the Metropolitan Museum. (link redacted by Dr. Masterjohn's request but it's not a difficult search.)

    in any event I found when I cut way back on sugar the excess weight started falling off. Correlation is not causation of course, but as Gautama said, 'When something works for you and the people around you, that you may believe.'

    Dr. Lustig gets type II children off insulin merely by taking the kiddies off soda in weeks, on a kid friendly diet as he describes it, junk food. Apparently it's harder for those of us in the throes of adultery. Being older is no help and in general causes more metabolic problems or does having metabolic problems cause one to be older??

    (link also redacted)

  9. Chris,

    Thank you for doing your own podcast I have always enjoyed the episodes that you have done elsewhere.

    As a side note for those that refuse to do iTunes I found the podcast on Overcast.



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