#19: Amber O'Hearn - Carnivore Q&A


Originally published at: https://ketowomanpodcast.com/amber-ohearn-part-i/

Daisy's latest extraordinary woman, Amber, discusses all things Carnivore.

Amber O’Hearn, M.Sc., is a data scientist by profession with a background in math, computer science, linguistics, and psychology. She has been studying and experimenting with ketogenic diets since 1997, and more recently writing and speaking about her findings. Her review on the evolutionary appropriateness and benefit of weaning babies onto a meat-based, high fat, low carb diet, was included as testimony defending Tim Noakes in his recent trial. Amber has been eating a carnivorous diet for over 8 years.

Articles mentioned:

Intermittent metabolic switching, neuroplasticity and brain health
Mark P. Mattson, Keelin Moehl, Nathaniel Ghena, Maggie Schmaedick& Aiwu Cheng
Nature Reviews Neuroscience volume 19, pages 63–80 (2018)

Sodium, Nutritional Ketosis, and Adrenal Function
Stephen Phinney, MD, PhD Jeff Volek, PhD, RD on December 14, 2017

Amber’s lecture at Breckenridge:


Ketosis without starvation: the human advantage

Ketosis is a natural physiological state when fasting. Many species make use of a ketogenic metabolism under conditions of food shortage, and because of this, some researchers call a ketogenic diet a "fasting mimicking diet". What is less often appreciated is that ketosis naturally arises in other contexts. Many mammals use ketones during gestation and suckling, breastfeeding human infants among them. The reason appears to be connected to brain growth; ketone bodies provide both fuel and raw material for growing brains. Humans have exceptionally large and complex brains, and our brains continue to grow long past weaning, with structural changes continuing into adulthood. Interestingly, we also have an unparalleled ability to achieve and maintain ketosis even when energy and protein needs are met and greatly exceeded, so long as carbohydrate intake is minimised. This ability is particularly pronounced in childhood. For this unusual trait to have developed, there must have been a selective advantage and pressure to maintain ketosis even when gluconeogenic substrate was available. In this presentation, I will review evidence for this trait and its uniqueness, its connection to brain evolution and health, and implications for ketogenic diets.

The end quote from this week’s show is from Robert Breault:

“For the most part, we carnivores do not eat other carnivores. We prefer to eat our vegetarian friends.”

Searching for some hive-mind answers