Saladino's idea that the ancestral diet wasn't low carb

(Alec) #22

Here’s the thing: if you eat this diet from birth the likelihood of metabolic disfunction is pretty low. This is not the scenario for 80% of the population he is talking to. 80% of them are metabolically deranged. Advising them (however obliquely) to eat fruit and honey is just not going to help them.

It bugs me that he calls himself Carnivore MD, yet he chugs down fruit and honey. He is simply not a carnivore, and I am sure he is confusing a lot of people out there with his nonsense: what they need is a cleaner dietary message.


Hi Alec. I think Dr. Paul Saladino needs to make it more clear just how active he is, and that the amounts of carbohydrates he has brought back into his WOE, the honey and fruits, are fitted to his activity levels, and others, even if metabolically healthy, must fit their amounts to their individual activity levels. As I understand it he was strict carnivore, but then healed to the extent he could bring back some carbohydrates such as fruits, honey and raw milk, and that is wonderful, it’s clearly doing him good. Many sees the strict carnivore WOE as an exclusion diet with a view to, once healed, bring back in foods and see how they do with them. Some choose to continue the strict carnivore path because they feel better on it, and that’s great, but I’m just amazed at the negative reactions with regards to Dr. Paul Saladino making those changes to his WOE, like they feel he’s betrayed the carnivore society, that’s ridiculous. It’s not a religion, it’s not an identity, it’s a WOE designed to heal.

So some of the animosity he has met with, simply because he incorporated those foods back which appears to be doing him well, is mind boggling to me. He continues to research nutrition, continues to research what is the optimum human diet, and instead of falling prey to dogmas, he appears to have an open mind. I have been quite surprised in people’s lack of objectivity, in their animosity when faced with new ideas and the sheer unwillingness to discuss and keep an open mind, as learning is just that, keeping an open mind. Yes, I’ve read all about Ancel Keys and his legacy, I’ve read the usual rules and helpful advice pertaining to a ketogenic WOE, ketosis, fat-adaptation, and the effects of fructose on the liver, insulin resistance, etc. And I understand a very simple formula is very helpful for those who are obese, diabetic, metabolically unhealthy, carb and sugar addicts, but there must also come a time when we can discuss more openly and freely how a ketogenic WOE will affect men and women differently, whether remaining perpetually in ketosis could potentially do more harm than good, for a woman, with regards to thyroid function, whether it is wise to keep insulin consistantly low, whether a WOE that has you grasping for supplements is really all that optimum, and this is all of course highly individual, and some will thrive and some will do poorly, but it is certain that one WOE will not fit all. Those who continue to do strict carnivore, great, wonderful that better health is felt on this WOE, but to call out someone who then decides to make positive changes to their WOE, like Dr. Paul Saladino, and try to ridicule him on that premise, is well, it tells me those particular carnivores have become attached to their WOE in a way that is unhealthy, and have begun to identify themselves with it. Then, indeed it is a cult. I am always on the lookout for the best nutrition, and the best way to live, I am always willing to learn, and would just wish for more open discussions, with new ideas welcomed instead of ignored or met with negativity, just because they don’t suit the carnivore’s society of views, or the ketogenic society. New ideas, whether good or bad, should always be welcomed.

I got stuck in the comment section to one of Dr. Paul Saladino’s videoes on youtube, and that was where I observed this animosity, but also on other sites as well. The idea that he is not to be taken seriously because he changed his mind, or opened up his mind rather to new possibilities is well, silly. Dr. Ken Berry was dead sure about vegetables, then he made a video about how he was wrong about vegetables, and noone seemed to call him out saying he could no longer be trusted or listened to because he had changed his mind. Having an open mind is key when researching nutrition and health. That said, I don’t take any of the youtube doctors’ word as gospel, but I find it interesting to listen to them.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #24

Given that sugar consumption has a direct effect on serum glucose levels, not to mention the bad effects of the fructose part of the sugar on the liver, those of us who came to a ketogenic diet for metabolic healing find that even a small quantity of sugar interferes badly with our health. This is especially true for people who are sugar or carbohydrate addicts. (Yes, that is a real phenomenon.)

It doesn’t matter if the glucose is being metabolised, its presence in the blood stream causes damage, hence the insulin response to get it out of the blood and into muscle, where it can be metabolised, and into fat tissue, for storage. If insulin rises to that level, it halts fatty-acid metabolism for the duration of the emergency; it also halts ketogenesis in the liver.

That is because he still calls himself a carnivore, when he is clearly not. The objection is not to what Dr. Saladino is eating, it’s to the misuse of the terminology. Deliberately including fruits and honey is contrary to what the term “carnivore” means. By his logic, I could be eating 600 g/day of carbohydrate and only 20 g of fat, and call my diet ketogenic. If Dr. Saladino were to stop referring to himself as a carnivore, that would satisfy people.

Ah, well that explains it. The YouTube comments section is a sewer, and not to be taken as representative of what normal people think. When I was still reading the comments, my impression was that there are people who go from video to video, making the most negative and insane comments they can think of, just because they can. If you think the comments directed at Saladino are bad, you should see some of the comments directed at former vegans who start eating meat again.


I still don’t know much about Saladino but according to what I have read from people here, the problem isn’t that he changed his own woe. But he pushes the thought that whatever he is doing at the time is the One True Way or close to it…? And that’s very wrong.
And even for his own individual case…

If he did that, no wonder people have a negative view about him.

It’s NOT that he changed his own woe, that’s fine and he has all the right for it.
Some gurus are like this (allegedly. I never followed anyone, I can’t imagine why that would be useful for me), they get obsessed with this and that and they decide they were wrong in the past. How could anyone trust such people?
Open-minded is that we admit we don’t know everything, we are different and there is NO One True Way at all.

(Robin) #26

Hey, that was a good post. I hope the carnivores on this forum are more reasonable and supportive of doing what works for each of us.
I know some are quick to protest if another eats outside the literal meaning of animal based and yet still calls themselves a carnivore.
I guess I am just happy to be thriving wherever I land, regardless of labels.
Some may find a happy home in carnivore land and never leave. Others may step outside the boundaries for a myriad of reasons. It’s all good, in my opinion.

Oh and the comment section? Bah.
My dad liked to say “All the noise comes from the shallow end of the pool”.


It’s fine to be carnivore, almost carnivore, not carnivore, even a thriving high-carber… Labels may not interest us, all fine.

But MISLABELING makes other people’s life worse. People already have no idea what a vegetarian or a carnivore is but when people put these labels on them while eating quite differently (if something, eating dense sugars is quite different from carnivore IMO), that just makes things even worse.

I like using words right anyway… They already have no very fixed meanings in some times, there is no need to make a bigger confusion and worse communication.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #28

I’m the same way with all the different “fasts” out there. Fasting means not eating. I can sort of wrap my head around the concept of a “fat fast” because of the limited calories, but strictly speaking, an “egg fast” is really an egg-and-cheese diet, not a fast, especially since calories aren’t restricted at all. You might as well call carnivore a “meat fast” in that sense.

And, hey, let me tell you about my new eat-all-you-want fast. You’ll love it! :rofl::rofl::rofl:


Hi Paul. I do understand that for some people fructose and glucose, is a serious thing. With regards to how it may affect them metabolically. And I don’t claim to understand all the science behind it. I also agree with Alec’s comment with regards to the Hazda, that if they were born and raised to live and eat that way, it is a very different situation from someone whose metabolic system has been damaged by years of eating SAD, has for instance insulin resistance, a fatty liver, a pre diabetic or diabetic condition, or some other symptom of metabolic syndrome. As to getting stuck in the comment section on youtube, oh that’s an annoying habit I have. But I did also sense the same animosity towards Dr. Paul Saladino on other sites. I think he has interesting things to say, for example about fruits having better bio-availability than vegetables, but I don’t agree with his approach, to call his current WOE the one WOE that will work for everyone. A lot of the youtube lowcarb, keto and carnivore promoting doctors tend to take that approach though, and we all know one WOE does not fit all, there are just too many variables.


I think you’re right about all these loose terms probably confusing a lot of people. At least if they don’t do diligent research, and not everyone has the time or the inclination, and a simple formula is of course helpful when starting a WOE such as keto, ketowore or carnivore. I think Dr. Paul Saladino refers to his current WOE as animal based rather than carnivore? But I see he still calls his channel carnivoreMD. And it riles people up. I’ve never myself been all that concerned with labels, but I can appreciate some confusion might arise from all these loose terms.


Hi Robin, I so agree with your post. I don’t care about labels, but that the WOE brings health, strength and vitality. That it heals the body from inside out. And as there are so many variables, as we are all so different, each of us must walk our own journey and learn to listen to the body. The body is smart, amazing and miraculous.


That’s true, I still accepted that it means something like “fasting except” for some people. It doesn’t bother me but indeed, it’s not a fast.

But you still use the wrong definition to vegetarianism too. A vegetarian doesn’t eat animal corpses at all. Fish is animal. Pescatarians eat it, vegetarians can’t as they stop being a vegetarian then.

(Alec) #34

@never2late I have no problem with whatever Dr Saladino wants to personally consume. It’s his life and he is free to eat what he wants. Absolutely no issues with that.

But this is about language and learning. We learn by listening to people, understanding what they mean through our shared language, and then processing that information with other knowledge from other sources. Language and meaning are therefore important. We should not be going around and calling squares circles and vice versa…this will confuse those people who are learning our language and concepts.

Dr Saladino is badging himself a carnivore, yet he is eating a lot of fruit. By definition, fruit is not on the carnivore diet. Of course he can eat fruit if he wants, but he is arguing that to be healthy, you should eat fruit. He cites studies and misinterprets them. There is a collection of activity and meaning here that is misleading and frankly wrong.

If he wants to espouse his way of eating as the best way, again I have no problem with that. But he can’t call that carnivore. It isn’t. Plain and simple. He is misleading and confusing people by implying that it is.


Hi Alec, I can agree to an extent in that when terms and labels are used very loosely, confusion can ensue. And that Dr. Paul Saladino might be better off re-branding his youtube channel to something more suitable, but perhaps inspiration hasn’t struck him yet. When I tell my family about my WOE I tend to say I am a ketowore, my WOE consists of meat, fish, pasture eggs, grassfed butter, raw milk which I have a glass and a half of daily, and honey (quarter of a teaspoon). But sometimes I also call it moderate carnivore. But when I think of strict carnivore, I tend to think of it as an exclusion WOE that many embarks on with a view to eventually re-introduce plants, though I also appreciate that for others that strict or pure carnivore as people like to refer to it as can be beneficial to maintain for life.

Where I don’t agree with you is in the bold statement that eating fruit is not healthy. That can be every bit as misleading as Dr. Paul Saladino’s statement that everyone should eat fruit, because this is of course highly individual who may benefit from eating fruits and who may not, depending on so many variables. But I do believe, if berries and fruits were to be eaten seasonally, and only in modest amounts, sourced locally, free from pesticides and chemicals, that they can indeed be both healthy and beneficial. The problem lies in purchasing overly sweet and modified, not to mention pesticide and chemical laden fruits in the supermarkeds, eating them in large quantities, and all year round.

Saying all plants are toxic and therefore not fit for consumption is every bit as potentially misleading as Dr. Paul Saladino telling people what to eat and what not to eat. I agree that language and meaning are important, and so such statements are not helpful in achieving the best learning, as open-mindedness and the willingness to look at studies and research that doesn’t just confirm one’s own belief, but to welcome all viewpoints, and new ideas, is vital to any progress both in nutrition and health. And when I say variables, I am referring to the great variety of human conditions, medical conditions, age, gender, medical history, and so forth.

Dr. Paul Saladino, Dr. Paul Mason, Dr. Ken Berry, Dr. Jason Fung and other youtube experts/doctors may all have some wisdom to share, it doesn’t mean they are always right. Learning is questioning, and the all-too-present trap is to fall victim for bias. As it’s everywhere. So to question, to keep reading, to listen to the body as well as science is my motto, and never think I have the answer.


But there was no such statement at all…

And inspiration or your words for your family doesn’t matter. Blatant dislabeling is wrong. It’s false information.

Actually, many of us don’t need those extreme(?) things let alone at the same time. Eating my own fruit galore is definitely unhealthy for me, even ONCE. And not just for me if the amount is truly big…
Okay, you probably just collected it all and used extreme to make a point, it’s not like I am not prone to do that… Indeed, there are many variables.
But saying everyone should eat fruit for being healthy, that’s pretty much wrong.

And if someone wanna teach others, they especially shouldn’t spout nonsense or change their opinion drastically all the time.
Again, IDK what Saladino says and does, I only use the information from others here but I suppose those things did happen…

And being wrong is human. Saying obviously false things, that’s a bit more.
Fruit is NOT carnivore. Just like eating meat is not vegetarian. It’s simple and very basic…


Shinita, I’m not saying Dr. Paul Saladino is right to call himself carnivore, as that’s a very specific WOE, with rules, though people do it all the time, put their own spin on things. But I do stand by saying that stating eating fruit is not healthy, for anyone, is not a truth or a fact, in my opinion, it’s a viewpoint. By bold statement, I merely meant, that one believes one is 100% right. I personally never believe I am 100% right, or 50% right even, sometimes. Especially when I am referring to science I may not have taken 100% in, or that my memory might betray me in some way.

I agree in that it is not healthy for a pre diabetic or diabetic, or someone with metabolic syndrome, to gorge on fruits and eat large amounts of honey. And even for a metabolically healthy person, I believe in modest and seasonal versus aplenty.

Yes, indeed it is human to make mistakes, we make mistakes all the time. Personally, I’m too concerned with falling into the trap of bias to listen too much to any of the youtube doctors for any length of time, and instead I just try to take it all in, to source the information, as well as reading blog articles, I much prefer that to podcasts and youtube videoes. I don’t see myself as carnivore, possibly ketowore, but sometimes we use terms people know well to try and best describe our WOE. I still feel there is a great benefit to beeing part of a ketogenic forum, regardless of what I may choose to incorporate into my WOE at some point, whether I eventually will take a different approach to things, because I am learning so much here. The forum provides a plethora of knowledge, personal experience, support all of which is indeed valuable.

Anyway, it’s very late and this old brain of mine is tired, so it’s off to bedfordshire. I always regret writing posts late at night as the later it is into the evening the less my brain/memory refuses to cooperate.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #38

What, exactly, are the benefits you have in mind? I would be curious to know. Also, do I presume correctly that you are talking about the sweet fruits, such as apples, pears, plums, and so forth, and not the fruits we commonly think of as vegetables, such as peas, tomatoes, and avocadoes?

(Megan) #39

He says he started adding in honey, then later on fruit, because on carnivore he was experiencing electrolyte disturbances, lower performance during exercise, sleep disturbances and heart palpitations. He said he chose fruit, specifically, to expose himself to as few plant anti-nutrients and toxins as possible.

(Sama Hoole) #40

I’m not taking this out of context. They definitely used it to question whether the ancestral diet was even low carb, and I’m practically quoting them there.

As for the baboon, we weren’t in the business of eating baboons back then. Small prey were fallback foods, because they were harder to hunt and provided much less fat. Hence why I used mammoths instead, which were a key ancestral food source. We would have spent long periods of time eating our way through a typical kill.


Hi Megan, I watched a video on youtube where Dr. Paul Saladino was talking about that, about the bio-availability in fruits versus vegetables. And have also heard him talk about which plants are the least toxic. It makes sense to me. When I tried incorporating broccoli, cabbage, green beans my body didn’t think it was a boon. I don’t think I do all that well with vegetables, as I noticed aches returning. When I added raw milk instead my body went, oh wonderful! No aches. (Here I find it’s important to add I’ve given up all grainfed dairy, including butter and cheese, the only dairy I have is raw milk and a bit of KerryGold grassfed butter) The honey my body is fine with too.

Dr. Paul Saladino says the berries and fruits are more bio-available, and points out, as an argument, they can be picked in nature and eaten there and then. No cooking or careful preparation required. But if I was to eat fruits and berries it would be seasonal, and only in modest amounts, sourced locally from farms here abouts. I don’t believe you need to eat a lot of them to get the benefits. Berries provide potassium, magnesium, vitamins C and K, fiber, and prebiotics.

I know some argue that eating carbs will age you, in fact I see that argument a lot, and I can see that being true certainly with regards to processed foods and sugar. But I’ll say it till I’m blue in the face that not all carbs are equal. And organic fruits and berries do not have an ageing effect, they seem to have quite the opposite, and this is not a fact I’m stating, it’s a mere observation, an experience. My skin has looked better when I’ve incorporated them, younger, less red (as I have roseaca) and they’ve appeared to have an anti-inflammatory effect. That was earlier on in my keto WOE that I particularly would notice this. But I believe eating fruits and berries that are pesticide and chemical laden is not beneficial. I also don’t believe it’s beneficial to eat them year round, gathered from all over the world instead of sourced locally.

As to the youthful effect that may just be a boost of vitamin C to help the body fight free radicals. For example, I gave up eating bacon (but still eat plenty of pork) due to the nitrites and nitrates. Now, as I understand it, the nitrates become carcinogenic in the body (when the bacon is cooked at high temperatures, and possibly this happens with other meats as well) and turn into nitrosamines. But here’s the thing, apparently, from what I’ve read, eating a food sufficient in vitamin C at the same time as ingesting the meat will prevent the nitrates from turning into nitrosamines, carcinogens. Now, some may argue the meat contains enough vitamin C, but a lot of us can’t afford to eat grassfed and grass finished, a lot of us eat what some refers to as factory farmed meat, I’ll just settle for calling it grainfed meat. And it is questionable to me if one only consumes these meats, and only conventional muscle meats, how much vitamin C one would be getting. I have been thinking of solving this issue by buying grassfed and grass finished organ meats, but will still also be buying the conventional muscle meats. To try and up vitamin C from food intake instead of supplement. Vitamin C fights free radicals, oxidation, cell damage. That is why I believe foods high in vitamin C such as fruits and berries has that youthful effect.

I will take my own body’s word over science any day.


Hi Paul, I believe fruits and berries, which are organic, locally sourced, free from pesticide and chemical, has a youthful effect in that they boost the body’s immune system with their relatively high vitamin C content. I believe we require vitamin C as a defence against free radicals, oxidation and cell damage, and fruits and berries do provide a very good source of this. Seasonal fresh berries, from what I’ve read, provide potassium, magnesium, vitamins C and K, fiber and prebiotics, for a healthy gut.

I gave up eating bacon because it has ingredients like nitrites and nitrates. It is my understanding nitrates turn into nitrosamines, carcinogens in the body, when the bacon is cooked at high temperatures. And this may also happen with other meats as well, when cooked at high temperatures.

Now, if some food high in vitamin C is ingested at the same time as the meat is ingested, apparently, from what I’ve read, the vitamin C prevents the nitrates from turning into nitrosamines, carcinogen. Well, one could argue vitamin C is abundant in meat. But conventional, grainfed meat, which the majority of us can afford to buy as opposed to grassfed and grass finished meat with a much better nutrient profile and omega3/omega6 ratio, is not as far as I’m aware abundant in vitamin C. It is possible sufficient vitamin C could be obtained from grassfed and grass finished organ meats, this I would have to look into. Then, you could argue that on a ketogenic WOE vitamin C becomes less important because the nutritional state of ketosis sets the body’s own defence system better in motion. But I’m not entirely certain if this would be sufficient to fight free radicals, prevent oxidation and cell damage. I am still looking into this.

Regarding your questions about the berries and fruits, yes you were correct. Some berries harvested from local farms in the summer time, and some fruits such as apples, pears, plums harvested from local farms in autumn. And not only will it be a much more fun experience to go and pick these berries and fruits ourselves, for the whole family to share the pleasure, but it is also the joy of supporting local farms. As to the amounts? I don’t see the reason to gorge on anything to supposedly obtain more benefits, a small handful of berries daily in the summer time, an apple, or a pear, or a couple plums daily in the autumn time.