I started noticing more drastic health changes after I turned 50 - my eyesight began to go - my T started to drop I suppose, and I began to gain weight more easily. When I reached about 218 lbs, I had to have two hernia surgeries. After that I went on what I call the anti-potato chip diet, and lost about 18 lbs in one year. Then I had to have a tumor removed in 2020, and after that I had to go on a powerful antibiotic due to an infection under the scar site. I started having some prostate issues, and my blood pressure went up into the high 140s over 90s. So I decided I wasn’t indestructible, and needed to pay more attention to my health.
I got my own blood panel, and the Dr advised I take 10,000 IUs of vitamin D, DHEA, and some other things. However, my blood pressure did not drop, so I started researching on my own and discovered vitamin K2, and studies showing positive impact on atherosclerosis and blood pressure. Theorizing that the antibiotics had perhaps killed off my Bacteriodes spp which make long chain K2, I started taking some Bacillus subtilis known to be able to colonize the human gut - apparently not all strains do - and started taking around 150 mcg of K2 daily. After about a year my blood pressure had dropped to the 120s over 70s range, but I was still 195 lbs, and looked “skinny fat.”
I decided to try to lose my visceral fat and gain some muscle, and found keto is probably the best way to do that. After doing keto my last BP reading was 122 over 68, but my systolic has dropped into the one teens, so I guess keto may have healed my arteries some more. I felt very good while doing keto, and won’t hesitate to do it again, but honestly seem to be stable at about 175 lbs as long as I eat my goat yogurt every day - even if I gain a pound or two after eating too many sweets - like on my son’s b-day.
I have always been somewhat health conscious but have learned a lot more in the last 2 years, and how bad the SAD, and the food industry which created it, is for our health. I became suspiscious of seed oils about 10 years ago after learning Ancel Keys had ignored countries that didn’t fit his theory, and that there are several groups around the world such as the Tokelau Polynesians and Eskimos that eat a very high saturated fat diet with no heart disease until the SAD infiltrated their diets. Now the Tokelau drink lots of soda, and have some of the worst diabetes and obesity in the Pacific. There was just too much epidemiological evidence to ignore, and coconut oil became available in the healh food stores, so I began to buy it instead of corn oil and such. It didn’t help that Monsanto made all seed oils GMO so they could be sprayed with glyphosate. Has anyone noticed that autism rates began to shoot up the year GMO soy got introduced? Food science has been notoriously bad with mere correlations becoming proofs on the news and little digging for actual causation until more recently.
Right now I do plan to be on goat yogurt for my breakfast permanently, and coconut milk protein powder smoothies as a supplement in winter when I work out. If I gain fat, I may do some official keto some more, but last year I seemed to be able to gain more muscle if I had a little more than 50 gr of carbs a day. I don’t plan to do the bulking, and cutting thing that professional weight lifters do though. I just want to gain about 13 more pounds of muscle this next winter, so that I look more decent. Frank Zane would cut to 50 carbs before shows, so seemed to do keto far before it became a thing, but I’m sure he modeled it after others. Anyway, I just decided that keto with some cruciferous veggies was the healthiest way to lose visceral fat, that would allow me to maintain the health of my gut biome, and not cause my basal metabolic rate to fall. I have always had real issues if my gut biome gets badly disrupted with powerful antibiotics, and whole food keto held promise for me to meet all my goals. I have always believed in eating my veggies, and love them. No offense to the carnis, but we were just not designed as carnivores or we would have a different mouth and a different digestive system. I love a great variety of food too, and carni is not it for me - and I feel it could be detrimental to my gut biome which needs fiber to thrive. If gut bacteria are starved, they will eat your gut lining to try to survive, so I keep mine well fed with fiber. I just won’t risk damaging it unless I absolutely have to for short term health reasons.
I do absolutely believe in the health benefits of keto - just not the carni variety. But I understand that possibly some people can do better on it. I feel there are many aspects of the SAD that are damaging to gut health, and by eliminating those, most people will recover the ability to do well on some plant foods. Personally, I try to improve my gut health. I have learned I can decrease some of the bad guys by using bacteriophages, and that will allow new areas of my gut to be colonized by good guys. There are good guys who make vitamin K2 for us, vitamin B12, butyrate, etc etc. There are trillions and trillions of them in a healthy gut - far more than we have cells in our bodies. We have a great symbiotic relationship, and I plan to keep it that way.