Ketogenic Diet with Dr. Dominic D’Agostino on the Fitness Nerds Podcast



Fitness Nerds Podcast with Dr. Dominic D’Agostino

  • Dr. D’Agostino was also recently on Kiefer’s Body IO podcast
  • It was interesting to hear that he is slowly being swayed by vegans around him and his pretty much cut out all meat from his diet except fish and insect protein
  • He also quoted a study that found that ketogenic diets can actually have a beneficial effect on the gut biome… which is not what Kiefer and Dave Asprey have been saying recently.  Hopefully more will come out about this
  • In response to people who are concerned with the effect a ketogenic diet on thyroid hormone like myself and Ben Greenfield (whom D’Agostino actually referenced), D’Agostino felt that thyroid issues only arise because people are eating too hypocaloric AND/OR are over-training.  He specifically referenced Ben Greenfield because he was in the midst of preparing for an ironman
    • This seems like a valid argument since in my case I was pretty active with BJJ and Crossfit at the time.  It’d be interesting to see what my thyroid does after doing strict ketosis while making sure I’m pounding down enough fat to ensure I’m getting enough calories…
  • Apparently a lot of ketogenic athletes suffer from super low testosterone levels, which was seen in a lot of Volek’s athletes, and D’Agostino hypothesizes that this occurs because exercise increases the amount of testosterone receptors on muscle, increasing sensitivity, so you don’t need as much floating around the serum.
  • For MMA fighters and I’m assuming this applies to BJJ guys, he recommends utilizing carbs as a secondary source of energy (ketones being primary), by taking a low amount of carbs 25-100gm during and immediately after a workout

5 Responses to Ketogenic Diet with Dr. Dominic D’Agostino on the Fitness Nerds Podcast

  1. Ash Simmonds says:

    Yeah, that going plant eating thing threw me too. DD is a great researcher and likely to be a big player in these circles (keto fitness etc) come 2015/16, but ditching most animal meat or whatever? There’s a ton of reasons to keep meat as a staple and plants a distant flavour enhancer.

    Reminds me of some dental guy going on about how people’s teeth are only bad because of the carbohydrates in our diet and such, and just when it seems like he’s going to make some intelligent comments, his ending recommendation therefore is “brush your damn teeth”.

    As to testosterone, I think it should be reported as is until we understand it better, and not applied with some kind of subjective term like “suffering from low levels”. I’m probably “suffering” from chronically low levels of insulin.

    “Cloquet hated reality, but realized it was still the only place to get a good steak.”

  2. Hemming says:

    It is a really good podcast. Kiefer’s latest podcast with him is also worth a listen.

    I’m not sure Dom said he was only eating fish but gravitating more and more towards a pescetarian diet 🙂

    Bill Lagakos has some posts on testosterone on a ketogenic diet. He’s point was also that with adequate calories normal levels were maintained. If you go on any calorie restricted diet I think testosterone levels will go down. Layne Norton has a video where he argues that as long as your testosterone is within the normal range it will make no difference on muscle growth (if that goes for everything I’m not sure).
    I think there is truth to the idea that you should eat enough. After I’ve started tracking my food I’m surprised I’m not eating more because I feel so full. But when I look at the actual calorie count I’m surprised I can survive on so few. It sounds like bullshit when I say that I feel I have to stuff myself three times each day to just have energy to go to work and train 3x/week, but that is actually the case. On top of that, on a ketogenic diet you need extra energy for the conversion of ketones etc.
    Are you actually being ketogenic now while slamming the fat and testing your thyroid? It would be extremely interesting to see if increased calories resulted in muscle/fat gain and/or more energy.

    It was interesting that he recommended up 100g of carbs with intense training. I had not expected that. Wrt, Bill Lagakos had a good point ‘go as low carb as you can tolerate’ whether that be 30g or 150g.

    What I’m trying to figure currently is if you can build muscle mass on a ketogenic diet – not just maintain it.

    • BJJ Caveman says:

      Ya you’re right about the gravitating towards fish thing…

      With regard to testosterone, it didn’t seem like mine went down at all.. or if it did, just mildly. Not as much as my thyroid levels taking a hit. I’d imagine that if it was solely due to me being hypocaloric… my testosterone would’ve have went down a lot more, since my TSH bumped up so high.

      I’ve been bouncing in and out of ketosis lately while doing a mix of Carb Nite and CBL.

      D’agostino seems to feel that you can put on muscle mass while ketogenic… only issue would be throwing down enough calories, which it seems like you’re having a hard time doing!

      • Hemming says:

        Yeah, I think you’re right about the testosterone.
        I asked Dom about gaining muscle. He said that it can be done but that it will be slower compared to slamming the carbs.
        Its getting very frustrating feeling like real crap mentally and physically from going to the gym 3-4x/week just because I’m not able to eat enough.
        I’m doing CBL with ‘clean’ carbs like potatoes. I’m in and out of ketosis too but I think its sometimes more due to too few calories than glycogen depletion.

    • Ash Simmonds says:

      If someone can explain to me how sugar magics itself to muscle but protein doesn’t then I’ll give some imagination to being unable to build muscle ketogenically.

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