It’s time to welcome back to the show for the third time, my good friend Dr. Cate Shanahan on the occasion of the publication of her latest, sensational book!

This best-selling author is back at it again with Dark Calories—How Vegetable Oils Destroy Our Health and How We Can Get It Back. This stuff has a high shock value, starting out with the book description: did you know that consuming a large serving of french fries served in vegetable oil delivers the toxicity of smoking 24 cigarettes?

Get ready people, this is an illuminating and educational show that will take you through the shocking and disturbing story of why we turned away from natural fats and got into the world of polyunsaturated oils, the “sinister figure” and “flawed and manipulative” science behind this major cultural shift that occurred back in the 1950s that demonized saturated fat and convinced everyone to switch from butter to margarine. It is a shady, shocking story, and it is now time to take control of our health, especially as we navigate the modern food options and place central focus on what is now being strongly identified as the single most offensive agent we consume in our modern diet—what Dr. Shanahan calls the Hateful Eight (health-destructive oils like soybean, canola, corn, cottonseed, safflower, sunflower, grapeseed and rice bran oil).

In this show, you will learn why vegetable oils are so bad and what they do inside the body to hamper your ability to burn stored body fat—and this poses a big problem, because if you’re not good at fat burning, then you are going to get hungry and eat too much food, which leads to gaining more weight, getting sick, and other diet-related diseases of modern times that are tied to metabolic syndrome, like diabetes and cancer. The final third of the book is a solution and offers great tips from Dr. Cate about how to navigate through food choices when you’re shopping (especially when you’re dining out) and a message of hope and how we can take matters into our own hands. Because if we wait around for government policy or corporate interest to say, “Hey, guess what? We finally figured out this stuff is bad for you and we’re not gonna sell it anymore!”, you’re going to be waiting a long time. So, it’s time to take action right now, starting with listening very carefully to this show and going out and purchasing the book Dark Calories.

Here we go with Dr. Cate Shanahan from her home in Florida.


Did you know that consuming a large serving of french fries cooked in vegetable oil delivers the toxicity of smoking 24 cigarettes?  [00:52]

Dr. Cate has focused her research and writing on the dangers of vegetable oils in our diet. [03:21]

Vegetable oils are very harmful in and so pervasive in the food supply. It causes oxidative stress which is at the root cause of every disease. [07:39]

When they are making vegetable oils, it has been refined like they for crude oil, like what you use in your car. They are filled with toxins. [13:12]

Oxidative stress is the basis of all disease.  This wasn’t really understood until the 1980s [18:21]

Other than vegetable oils, how else are we screwing up our health? [24:33]

Be careful where your donations to  research programs go. They are not looking at the causes of disease, but rather they are looking for new drugs. [31:33]

Ansel Keys was a physiologist who worked with doctors and convinced the medical community about the causes of heart attacks.  The information that he put out was totally erroneous and the community bought it. [32:10]

A lot of nutritional science from big institutions is not science, but is marketing. [36:51]

Soy oil is more obesogenic than anything else being studied. [40:02]

A highly regarded market like Whole Foods is supposed to be presenting healthy alternatives to other markets yet they have canola oil in their hot bar and in products on their shelves.  [44:32]

The average American, who doesn’t know that these oils are toxic is getting them whenever they eat out or eat at institutions like schools, hospitals, workplaces, etc. [47:48]

The term vegetable oil came about to distinguish this oil from whale oil but it’s not made from carrots, tomatoes and celery. These oils come from seeds. [51:47]

How do these oils cause obesity? Problematic body fat is body fat that has a chemical composition that your cells cannot use to generate energy. [55:11]

The keto diet now doesn’t help people as much as it used to. [01:04:31]

The keto diet isn’t the only diet you need to follow. [01:06:09]

Vegetable oils make you insulin resistant. [01:08:24]

When Cate dines out, how does she navigate the menus of the restaurants? [01:11:31]


  • Corn
  • Canola
  • Cotton seed
  • Soy
  • Sunflower
  • Safflower
  • Rice Bran
  • Grapeseed



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Brad (00:00:00):
Welcome to the B.rad podcast, where we explore ways to pursue peak performance with passion throughout life without taking ourselves too seriously. I’m Brad Kearns, New York Times bestselling author, former number three world-ranked professional triathlete and Guinness World Record Masters athlete. I connect with experts in diet, fitness, and personal growth, and deliver short breather shows where you get simple, actionable tips to improve your life right away. Let’s explore beyond the hype, hacks, shortcuts, and sciencey talk to laugh, have fun and appreciate the journey. It’s time to B.rad.

Cate (00:00:38):
This happens with all of our food. It all oxidizes, but the degree is radically different and so much worse when we’re talking about foods that are cooked with these vegetable oils.

Brad (00:00:53):
Hey, it’s time to welcome back to the show for the third time. My good friend Dr. Cate Shanahan, on the occasion of the publication of her latest sensational book, the multi-time bestselling author, is at it again with the book called Dark Calories, how Vegetable Oils Destroy Our Health and How We Can Get It Back. And this stuff has high shock value. Starting out with the book description: did you know that consuming a large serving of french fries cooked in vegetable oil delivers the toxicity of smoking 24 cigarettes? Get r,eady people. It’s gonna be a very illuminating educational show. It’s kind of a shocking and disturbing story about how America and the rest of the world that we influence turned away from natural saturated animal fats to the highly processed world of polyunsaturated vegetable oils, the major cultural shift back in the fifties where we were convinced to switch away from butter to margarine and all the related modifications to the diet.

Brad (00:02:02):
It was driven by a central sinister figure that Cate calls out and identifies this flawed, the manipulative science that happened back in the day. Dr. Ansel Keys is his name. This was the demonizing of saturated fat and promoting these heavily processed health destructive oils driven by financial entanglements between industry and underhanded academics. It’s a shady, shocking story and is now time to take control of our health, especially as we navigate the modern food options and place central focus on what is now being strongly identified as the single most offensive agent that we consume in our modern diet. And that is what Cate titles The Hateful Eight, that’s a group of eight different, the most common highly refined industrial seed oils, AKA vegetable oils, soybean oil, canola oil, corn, cotton seed, sunflower, safflower, the stuff that you see on all manner of processed foods and on the label and the stuff that you don’t see when you are dining out at fast food, at chain restaurants, and even at fine dining, that a tremendous portion of the calories that you consume is coming from these health destructive seed oils.

Brad (00:03:21):
So you’re gonna hear the story, you’re gonna hear the cause, you’re gonna hear the reasons why these vegetable oils are so bad and what they do inside the body to hamper your ability to burn stored body fat. And that is the big problem because if you are not good at fat burning, you are going to get hungry. You’re going to eat too much food, and you’re gonna get fat and sick and drive these major diseases of modern times, the diet related diseases of metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, uh, nicely. The final third of the book is a solution and very great tips from Dr. Cate about how to navigate through food choices when you’re shopping, especially when you’re dining out, and a message of hope and how we can take matters into our own hands. Because if we wait around for government policy or corporate interest to say, Hey, guess what?

Brad (00:04:15):
We finally figured out this stuff is bad for you and we’re not gonna sell it anymore. You’re gonna be waiting a long time. So it’s time to take action right now, starting with listening very carefully to this show and going out and purchasing the book Dark Calories. Here we go with Dr. Cate Shanahan from her home in Florida. Dr. Cate Shanahan. It is so awesome to connect with you. I’m sorry it’s not in person this time, but we do have the momentous occasion of yet another major book launch. So we are here to celebrate the release of Dark Calories.

Cate (00:04:46):
Thank you, Brad. Thank you for having me on. And yes, I will forgive you for not flying all the way from California to Florida into summer

Brad (00:04:53):
Next time, next time. So this is yet another in a sequence of many fantastic books. Many people were kind of exposed to the ancestral health movement itself, and your first book, which was Deep Nutrition, which kind of was one of the first presentations, second guessing our mainstream dietary advice. Why don’t you talk us through your writing journey and the various books that led to this one, and maybe that’ll lead into why you chose to focus on vegetable oils for this latest book.

Cate (00:05:28):
Yeah, so it, when I first got into nutrition, one of the very first things I discovered was that everything I’d been taught about fats in medical school was, seemed to be wrong and seemed to be unfounded. Seemed like there was a lot of data, but it was not based on numbers. It was like there was a, there were false claims that the data said that saturated fat caused heart attacks. And when I looked at that data, I found just reference after reference to earlier studies, and it just kept unraveling. And finally, the earlier study was this study called The Seven Countries Study is a huge group collection of studies. And when you look at that, there’s, there’s several authors on it, and the authors actually contradict each other about what their conclusions were. So the Seven Country Study was a multiple, um, site,[00:07:39] multiple investigator, huge study done over many years, um, starting in the fifties and it didn’t really end until the eighties.

Cate (00:06:41):
And it was, the lead author was Ansel Keys, who’s the, the guy driving this whole conversation. Ans it was Ansel Keys who came up with the idea that saturated fat clogs are arteries. And he’s featured in your book, isn’t he? He, he’s featured in like, yeah, most of my books <laugh>, because Ansel Keys is not a good man, unfortunately. And he’s sort of hijacked the whole, he’s hijacked not sort of hijacked the entire medical education around nutrition has been damaged and distorted by Ansel Keys and his work and his agenda. And that’s what I started to discover was way back 20 years ago in 2002 when I first started looking at the relationship between saturated fat and heart disease. And, you know, seeing that it was unfounded. And I did that because I also, at the same time, I was sick and I was questioning what I should be eating myself.

Cate (00:07:39):
And, until that time I had never thought about vegetable oil. But I came across some chemistry terms around vegetable oil that really piqued my interest in the subject. And long story short, I discovered that vegetable oil can deteriorate during its manufacturer and during cooking. And when it does this, it deteriorates into toxins, and then those toxins enter our body, and then they further damage and oxidize the polyunsaturated fatty acids in our bodily tissues. And so that was a, you know, understanding that vegetable oils basically promote this thing called oxidative stress, which oxidative stress is at the root cause of every disease that medical science has ever investigated. So understanding that vegetable oils cause oxidative stress to me was a mind blowingly important discovery. And, I just started writing about that. And I haven’t stopped since because it, it’s does so many things to our body.

Cate (00:09:10):
Vegetable oils do are so harmful in and so like pervasive in the food supply. And yet the discussion around them is so muddy and so full of misinformation and then half true information. And that’s a problem because even the people who are talking about, you know, you need to avoid these vegetable oils are underestimating the extent of the damage that they do to our bodies and our metabolism. And so that’s why I wanted to write Dark Calories. Now you and I have a relationship that goes way back, I don’t even remember, it was like 2012 or something. He randomly gave me a phone call during a lunch break, <laugh>, while I was at work.

Brad (00:10:01):
That’s what I do when I, when I find my go-to people. That’s right. I tracked you down after listening to you in a podcast ’cause you explain things so, uh, precisely and, and emphatically. And it was, you know, breakthrough information at the time. And I think this is, you know, probably one of your greatest calling cards is that you’re the, the world’s leading crusader against these vegetable oils. And I want to go back a little bit. We’re gonna talk about why and how Ansel Keys was able to succeed with manipulating the science and, and changing, um, government policy and, and influencing what were sold on the, on the store shelves. But you said something really important where you discovered that the, the oils degrade during their, during their processing. And then we have for a really simplified insight, compare and contrast to the high quality olive oil where you’re pressing, you might read that on the label of your bottle. A first cold press is a great distinction. So when you get a product that’s meant to yield oil, you don’t have to quote unquote process it. You just have to squeeze the oil out of the coconut, the olive, the avocado, or the oils that we’ve been educated to believe are healthier. So maybe you could dive into why the products made from stuff that’s not supposed to yield oil in the first place is where we get into trouble, it seems.

Cate (00:11:24):
Yeah. So the, the vegetable oils that are problematic, I group them into, there’s eight of them. And so I call them the Hateful Eight. And they are corn, canola, cotton seed, soy, sunflowers, safflower, rice bran, and grape seed oil. And if you’re outside of North America, you don’t have canola, you have rape seed instead, for your global listeners. But, all of those seeds really started as like they were not bred to be oil seeds. They were bred not for human consumption. They were bred for generally other purposes. So like soy has been cultivated for thousands of years in Asia, but it was for, it was eaten as a whole food and it was fermented and it was like, you know, not to use as oil. And soy is the most prevalent in our food supply. Um, a canola actually was first used as machine oil in World War II in Canada. And then after the war they modified it a little bit to make it safer for human consumption, because the fatty acid profile itself was problematic. It had too much, um, too much IC acid. So, uh, you know, IC acid is difficult for humans to metabolize. So they bred a breed of rape, rape seed, um, that they branded as canola, which stands for Canadian low IC acid. Oh, oil. Yeah. So little no

Brad (00:13:03):

Cate (00:13:03):
Yeah, so, so that, um, uh,

Brad (00:13:06):
Canadian engine oil, classic modified, love it.

Cate (00:13:12):
So the, the, the thing that makes these oils distinct and distinctly toxic is that you know, they, they have to be like mashed up under huge amounts of heat pressure. And sometimes with solvents to extract the oil with the kind of efficiency that the industry wants, you could do it with a lot of loss. And then soy oil would cost probably a thousand times what it does cost. And the analogy is that you made to olive oil is perfect because like first press, extra virgin olive oil is a high quality oil. And you can eat it as it drips out of the press. It’s edible, it’s nutritious, it’s healthy, but the mash that’s left over still has oil in it. And so to get oil out of that, they use heat and pressure, and then that oil is not edible and it has to be refined. So refined olive oil can’t be called virgin, and it’s not, as it comes out, it’s not edible because of what happens when you heat oil is that it will oxidize and different reactions will start and just byproducts will form and just, it’s a messy glop.

Brad (00:14:27):
Yeah. I guess someone who burned something on the stove, they poured some oil in the pan, they started stir frying the broccoli, and they got a phone call and forgot about it. We can see what’s happening at a molecular level and at a smell level in your kitchen, if you’re not worried about the biochemistry, this is pretty obvious.

Cate (00:14:48):
Well, actually before it starts to burn, it will start to deteriorate. It will oxidize. So that’s the problem with, um, the kind of oxidation that happens in the factory with these seed oils is that you can’t, it, it doesn’t involve smoke <laugh>. So that it, it’s invisible and the toxins that are produced stay in the oil and the refining is necessary to remove those toxins. Or it would immediately be just, you know, very, very, very toxic, probably induced vomiting. And, you know, it would smell horrible taste vial. No one would eat it. So the Hateful Eight oils, yield and oil that is inedible at first, the crude oil is what they call after being pressed.

Brad (00:15:34):
I’ve heard of that term before.

Cate (00:15:36):
Yeah. So <laugh>, right? Like you mean in refining gas? Yeah, gas. Yeah. In fact, very similar techniques to refining the crude vegetable oil are used to refine motor oil. What we get, you know, how we get motor oil, the crude petroleum to get motor oil and gasoline and the other things. So vegetable oils, you know, are not, it’s kind, the crazy part is that initially the oil is toxic and only through extensive refining is it rendered safe enough to eat that. It doesn’t make you sick immediately. But there are still toxins in the oil at, you know, measurable quantities that are quite shocking in terms of like how we normally measure toxins, which is parts per million. Well, these are present in parts per hundred. So it’s like a thousand times more, or is that 10,000 times,

Brad (00:16:44):
More than a human can handle whatever it is.

Cate (00:16:46):
Yeah. It’s a whole bunch more. And that’s somehow, you know, I mean, that is okay because those toxins were not added on purpose, so they don’t count. Mm-Hmm. Right. That’s the problem here. And so everything that I just described is just the beginning of the development of toxins in foods that we eat when we use vegetable oils. Or when anyone uses ve oils, like in a restaurant or in a cafeteria, that’s just the beginning of the toxicity because when they’re exposed to light, when they’re, when you heat them again or, you know Mm-Hmm. A restaurant heats them again, more oxidation, more toxins form. And, and then if you reheat your food, it happens all over again. So this happens with all of our food. It all oxidizes, but the degree is radically different and so much worse when we’re talking about foods that are cooked with these vegetable oils.

Brad (00:17:47):
Right. And when you use that term, oxidative stress, we’re also familiar that a high intensity exercise session generates oxidative stress. Lots of things generate oxidative stress laying out in the sun and getting even just tan. So what we’re talking about is an overwhelm and an excess and, and a chronic excess of oxidative stress, and especially inappropriate oxidative stress. Unlike the workout, the consumption of the french fry is simply poisoning yourself with no, with no upside.

Cate (00:18:21):
Yeah. So let’s talk about exercise and oxidative stress. And, but first let me just say, what is oxidative stress? So oxidative stress is different from oxidation. Oxidation can occur outside the body, inside the body. It’s just reaction of something with oxygen. If you slice an apple and it starts to brown, that is oxidation. If you have a rusty car or rusty metal parts on your bicycle, that has been brought to you by oxidation, reacting with the iron, um, and it’s accelerated by water. So, um, so oxidation generates the toxins. Now, what’s oxidative stress? Oxidative stress is something that can only happen in a cell. So it’s the effect of toxicity in a cell or other things can bring about oxidative stress. But oxidative stress is a huge concept that doctors don’t learn much about either. But like I mentioned in the beginning, pathologists, the types of doctors who study the cause of diseases, right?

Cate (00:19:26):
They’re called the Doctor’s Doctors because they explain to doctors what disease is caused by, and they help doctors diagnose what’s wrong with somebody. They do a lot of microscopic work and they do a lot of, um, toxicology. They do a lot of chemical work. So pathologists were starting to identify evidence that different tissues in our body were experiencing oxidative stress back in the 1980s. And that these tissues were diseased tissues. So they, they saw it, um, in the brain tissue, the plaques and tangles of Alzheimer’s dementia. That’s, they, they found that those were due to oxidation of proteins, which only happens during oxidative stress. So oxidative stress drives dementias. We found that with every single type of neurologic disease, whether it’s in the brain or if you’re a diabetic and you have diabetic neuropathy, if you have chronic pain, if you have spinal, um, degeneration, it’s found in every disease, every single disease. And yet doctors don’t learn that vegetable oils drive oxidative stress. So it’s, there’s a big disconnect here. And Dark Calories, I’m trying to make the connections between vegetable oils in our diet and the diseases that everybody gets, that doctors treat every day, but we don’t have a good explanation for. And all we can do is, you know, is prescribe drugs.

Brad (00:21:04):
Yeah. I mean this, this theme is, you know, recurs all the time, especially in the, in the progressive health scene where, the doctors aren’t helping you stay healthy and well. And it really seems like, um, it’s not their job, you know, that they’re trained to care for disease and then to specialize in the various parts of the body in the various diseases. So, I’m a huge fan of the medical system when I need it. But if I’m walking to the doctor and expecting them to develop a wellness plan for me, I’m not really understanding what the, what the western medical system is all about. So, um, this is sort of, you are, you are an MD with a long career in western medicine, but I think the book is, is is stepping outside of that and saying, Hey, can we address the, the cause of many of the reasons we come to the doctor for including, you know, the tragic increase in cognitive decline cases these days.

Brad (00:21:56):
And so, um, when you, when you are attributing everything to the root cause of oxidative stress, chronic inflammation in the body, that seems to be undisputed these days right there, there’s no one that’s gonna come on next week and say, no, oxidative stress is fine. I mean, this is, these are sort of things that we can lay as a foundation and then go trying to figure out the cause and maybe hear about some controversy and confusion. And of course, we’re gonna get into that shortly where someone might say that these vegetable oils are okay or no big deal. But is that a, a fair assumption to say that this is what’s aging us and causing disease?

Cate (00:22:33):
Yes, absolutely. Vegetable oils are oxidative stress in a bottle, and oxidative stress is the root cause of inflammation. It’s the root cause of degeneration. It’s accelerates the reactions that sugar has with our tissues called glycation. So, you know, other folks are talking about oxidative stress as one of several factors inducing disease, but it’s the primary factor. It is the ultimate reason that we die has to do with oxidative stress. And, this was, you know, this is something I talk about in the book, the discovery of why we die, and it starts at the cellular, cellular level. When our cells experience free radicals out of control, the membranes, their cell membranes start to get destroyed. And that is initiated by oxidative stress. And so, oxidative stress is something that we, we always experience, but the degree that we are experiencing today because of our diet based on vegetable oil is the root cause. It’s what’s bringing about all of these epidemics. It’s the main driver, right? There are other things, of course, sugar’s not good for us. It’s nutrient, bereft, nutritionally bereft. Mm-Hmm, <affirmative>. But this is the main driver, the vegetable oils, because they are the most powerful promoters of oxidative stress. But you brought up what

Brad (00:24:08):
Else is, uh, oh,

Cate (00:24:09):
Sorry, what you brought up the exercise question. Did you wanna get back to that one? So

Brad (00:24:14):
Yeah. ’cause I was gonna ask you like what else is on the list if vegetable oil also up there, you mentioned sugar or excessive sugar or processed sugar, and then how else are we stressing our cells inappropriately and accelerating aging and disease?

Cate (00:24:30):
So you mean like other than other than vegetable oils or,

Brad (00:24:33):
Yeah, like in lifestyle as well as diet. Like you, you said that the vegetable oils top on the list and what are the other ways we’re we’re screwing things up?

Cate (00:24:42):
Well, so diet wise, the other factors are the refined macros, right? So we have refined sugar and refined flour, which are basically refined carbohydrate. And then, a lot of people don’t like it when I say this, but like, the refined protein powders are not great because they are like, they’re also refined and they don’t have the whole, that’s not how we’re supposed to get a protein, right? So it’s all, all of these, there’s four main ingredients that add up to making processed food. And it’s really as simple as vegetable oils, refined sugars, refined flours and protein powders. And the protein powders like include things like hydrolyzed soy protein, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, the pea protein that is in all of these vegan products. So processed food is full of these four ingredients. In fact, it’s, you could say it’s really the defining feature of processed food is that it’s main ingredients are these four refined macros, right? And I’m kind of saying four, but sugar and refined flour are really essentially the same idea. They both break down into sugar, they spike our blood sugar, they have the same effects in our body,

Brad (00:26:12):
I guess all the chemicals and preservatives and things that go into getting that processed food on the shelf and staying on the shelf for good shelf life. So we have the macros and then all the crap that goes along with it.

Cate (00:26:26):
Well, yeah. So let’s talk about that crap, because that is a very minor issue compared to the main ingredients. And so specifically when it comes to the vegetable oils, like, you know, you are gonna, like, if you buy crackers, 30% of the calories are coming from vegetable oil, and yes, they have some antioxidants in there, some BHT, maybe they’ve got

Brad (00:26:47):
Some, but they’re, but they’re gluten-free, Cate

Cate (00:26:49):
<laugh> <laugh>, right? Whether or not they’re gluten-free. But, and, and, you know, the all the other things that are in the food supply are not good, right? The, the artificial flavorings, the artificial colorings, the glyphosate, the antioxidants, the stabilizers. But when it, when we’re talking about toxicity, we have to talk like toxicologists and toxicologists know they have an axiom. The dose makes the poison. Mm-Hmm, <affirmative>. So you can have a very powerful poison that’s present in a tiny tiny amount. That’s what makes it powerful. If it has a, a harmful effect in a tiny, tiny amount, right? And then you, but then you have to say like, okay, so what’s in vegetable oil that’s toxic? Well, we have things that are very powerful toxins. There’s four hydroxy non anol. There’s acro acro, there’s other, there’s aldehyde. All of these are extremely powerful toxins so powerful that, for example, acro, acro or aan, different people say it differently.

Cate (00:28:05):
You can put a minute amount of that on a slide with a brain cell, and you start, you can watch in real time as the, the long branching dendrites of that brain cell are destroyed and start dying back. And the brain cell basically is pruned down to a tiny little nub of a stump. And we’re talking about like very tiny nano molar concentrations, which is eating a french fry can deliver, you know, a bunch of french fries. Serving a french fries can deliver that sort of concentration into your bloodstream. Now fortunately we have a liver, we have antioxidants that try and fight against some of this stuff, but with vegetable oil, we are eating some of the most toxic compounds known to man. And we are eating them in amounts that are, that are higher than what we’re eating when it comes to the glyphosates and the other toxins that are less toxic than things like acro.

Brad (00:29:09):
Right? So we’re, we’re focusing on some of the minor issues and, and they’re, they have high shock value. But the french fries, like you said with with this book, you’re trying to provide clarity to the, to the issue. And one of the clarifying statements that will wake anybody up is when you make the case that a five ounce serving of french fries, of course, cooked in vegetable oil, has a similar carcinogenic effect to, is it 20 to 25 cigarettes? Is this, is this possibly true?

Cate (00:29:41):
Yeah. That comes straight from several publications by a toxicologist, world renowned British toxicologist named Martin Gutfeld. So I’m just citing his research, and he’s been trying to sound the alarm on this for decades now. And part of the reason that we are focusing on other things other than vegetable oils is because doctors are taught that these are healthy, you know, in the fifties and sixties and seventies, and even into the eighties, the type of fat that was healthy was polyunsaturated fat. Mm-Hmm. Right. And then, then in the eighties, fat, all fat became vilified. Yeah. But before that, polyunsaturates were heart healthy, supposedly.

Brad (00:30:28):
Well, I mean, this is 2024 and it’s still communicated by a huge swath of the medical community and, and the general population.

Cate (00:30:36):
They’ve never admitted they were wrong. Right. They’ve never admitted their mistake. And, and that’s why I call it Dark Calories, because this is sinister what’s going on in medicine and medical research, you know, I mean, the big shame of it all is, well, there’s so many, where do I start? But like, one of, one of the big shames is that, you know, patients go to doctors hoping for good advice. Doctors are not capable of giving them good advice about the root cause of most diseases, hypertension, diabetes, asthma, you name it. Um, and, and people are getting sick and dying because, uh, you know, of dementia and cancer and, um, infectious diseases that are resistant, you know, that are out of control. Their growth is out of control. ’cause people’s immune systems are suppressed by too much oxidative stress. People are being, you know, disfigured by serious rheumatologic and joint inflammation.

Cate (00:31:33):
And their lives are being, they’re spending so much of their lives disabled by neurologic disorders that are all preventable by a diet that doesn’t include these oxidative stress promoting oils. And, you know, that does control oxidative stress. But the other kind of horrific thing that is, you know, that is also actionable though, right? Like, so one thing that’s actionable is don’t eat these oils and eat a better diet. But the other thing is stop donating money to these societies that, like the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Foundation, they get over a billion dollars in donations from individuals every year supposedly to do research, but they’re not using it to do research that we would consider valuable. They’re, you know, like, what is the root cause of disease, which I just told you we don’t really need anymore research to validate that oxidative stress is the root cause of disease. They’re using that money to do research on new drugs that aren’t gonna fix the problem. Right? So, you know, your, your workplace walkathon, whatever it is, don’t donate money to these organizations. There are other organizations that are actually doing fantastic work. And I recommend a few of them in the back of the book, Dark Calories, maybe if you wanted to, you can link to some of them in the show notes. Those organizations deserve your money if you’re gonna donate.

Brad (00:33:10):
So I don’t want to let Ansel Keys off the hook so easily. We started out talking about him and how he had a massive effect on shaping government policy, food policy. How did, how did this come to be? I mean, how did he get deluded with his own work, or what was the forces that that caused him to? Um, I know he is been accused of cherry picking the data to present the compelling case that saturated fat was bad. And I’d love to know more details about how this guy left his legacy on the planet.

Cate (00:33:46):
Well, he was,, so Ansel Keys as a physiologist who worked with some of the most influential doctors of his day, because he was a really good career engineer and self-promoter. Um, you know, he kind of wormed his way into the good graces of Paul Dudley White, who is the personal physician for President Eisenhower, after he had his heart attack and influenced Paul Dudley White convinced him that he needed to tell President Eisenhower to have, follow a low fat diet and to downplay Ansel Keys constantly downplayed the role of smoking. So Dwight the President Eisenhower had a heart attack in 19, in the 1940s, and it gripped the nation with fear because he was a beloved president, and he was in the hospital in a bed, literally could not get up to go to the bathroom for six weeks.

Cate (00:34:46):
That was the treatment at the time. So he was basically, people did not know what was gonna, if he was gonna live or die. So this was the first time that heart attacks really entered the public consciousness. And at the same time, Ansel Keys was claiming to have an answer, right? Like, normally in science, doctors are a little cautious, and they’re like, well, we need to do some research and really make sure we’re identifying the right cause. But Ansel Keys immediately stepped up and said, it’s saturated fat. And, he did everything in his power in the media to convince people that it was saturated fat. And he did everything in his power, personally with other scientists to silence them and convince them that he was right, and they didn’t know what they were talking about. And he was really an effective bully that way. So, and I, and I write about exactly what he, you know, what he lied about, how many different sorts of lies he came up with to, to win the day.

Brad (00:35:52):
So it sounds like his, his driving motivation was to be a savior and to be the most prominent and most respected scientist physician, which this stuff is still going on to this day, left and right. And everywhere we look, there’s fitness promoters saying that this is a better way to lift weights than, than, than the old way. So it sounded like it was just the ego and careless and possibly devious research and also attacking others research, just, just an ordinary ego-driven megalomaniac trying to, trying to make his way in the world.

Cate (00:36:26):
Right? Yeah, exactly. And, you know, he, I would even maybe word it like he didn’t want to be a savior. He didn’t really care so much about that. He wanted people to think he was the savior <laugh> because he wasn’t. And I think at some point he knew that what he was doing was a lie. Mm-Hmm. Um, you know,

Brad (00:36:41):
That’s tough though, Cate, when you, when you’re, when you’re far down the road

Cate (00:36:45):

Brad (00:36:46):
It takes a big person to come out and say, Hey, um, I was wrong. You know,

Cate (00:36:51):
It does, it takes a big person, but you can’t claim to be a scientist if you’re not willing to do that. And, you know, Harvard and all of the big universities and Ivy League universities, universities still celebrate this man who basically was an egoist and self-promoter and should have admitted that he was wrong. But they too are suffering from the same kind of, not willing to apologize, not willing to question their beliefs. It’s a kind of a blindsiding that all, you know, people are subjected to. And when you have power on your side, who can force the issue, right? Who’s more powerful in the nutrition world than Harvard School of Nutrition or the Dean of, you know, the Tufts School of Nutrition? Who is more powerful than these people? Who’s gonna force them? Who’s gonna hold them accountable? Well, I don’t know anybody who can, you know, unless it is short of somebody trying to actually sue them in court or something, which I would be, I would love to, if there’s a lawyer out there listening, I would like to help you do that, <laugh>.

Brad (00:37:57):
Yeah. Fortunately, now we have, you know, the independent opportunity to make our voice heard. You get to publish this book and write whatever you want in it. And I don’t think you were adversely influenced by corporate marketing forces that wanted you to shape your message. You’re completely independent answer to nobody, which is what’s so great. But we, we kind of think that way about Harvard Medical School and the, the, the wonderful reputation that they have. But you, um, you correctly call out that even these, these most highly regarded institutions, are capable of engaging in deception, fraud and and so forth,

Cate (00:38:32):
They’re more capable than anyone else, because they are the ones that are more likely to attract the funding, right? So they have corporate relationships with Unilever, with, you know, Coca-Cola. They have corporate relationships which drive the science. And, you know, I think other people have come out and said, you know, insiders from inside the industry have come out to validate that statement as true. That it’s truly just a nutrition science at these influential universities is not a science. It is a really, it’s a form of marketing. And, you know, if you wanna get good science, you have to really look at the, the folks who are, <laugh> that you haven’t heard of. And, and I bring together dozens of them in the book, Dark Calories who are doing incredible work. But they, when I talked to them, I interviewed a lot of them. And, and you know, a lot of the people that I cite, some of ’em, I are no longer alive <laugh>, so I could interview them, but the ones that I spoke to universally, they say how difficult it is for them to get funded because, you know, well, one of ’em said it’s an uphill battle to get the stuff funded because obviously who’s, where’s the money gonna come from to, to do research on soy oil If it turns out that you’re gonna say it’s unhealthy for you, how are you ever gonna get another grant?

Brad (00:39:56):
Right? What, what, what percentage of it is it in the standard American diet now? Soybean oil?

Cate (00:40:02):
Yeah, so it, it’s, soybean oil alone accounts for probably, um, so, so all of the Hateful Eight together are 30% of our dietary calories. And soybean oil alone is far and away the bulk of that, of the Hateful Eight, it’s at least 90% Oh, really? Of the others being like canola. And, uh, that’s another one that’s kind of up there pretty high. And then, uh, you know, corn oil, canola, that’s fairly up there. But, yeah, so soy oil, the only way that she can get research done is by looking at new strains of soy that are slightly, you know, more stable oxidative. And then her research shows that, hey, yes, this, this new strain of soy oil is more oxidative stable than the other strains. So, hey, farmers, maybe you should grow it. Right? So like, there’s some money that can, in a good way, <laugh> support that research that if you really look at it, what it’s saying is that regular soy oil is extraordinarily toxic. And I’m, I’m speaking of Francis Slick at the University of Riverside, who’s done multiple studies on m such as shows that soy oil is more obesogenic than anything else she’s studied. And, and, and it’s because of the polyunsaturated fatty acids. So she’s compared it to coconut, she’s compared it to a high carbohydrate diet. She’s compared it to fructose.

Brad (00:41:30):
I want to get into those adverse health consequences of consuming these oils. But I guess maybe to like wrap up this story. So, influencers like Ansel Keys were successfully able to, thanks to the President laying in bed, listening to whoever came in the room, we were successfully able to transition away from saturated fats as a society and switch over. The common example is, you know, an America switch from butter to margarine, in the, take us through the decades and how, how that that fork in the road appeared. And then, you know, came a, became a super highway to processed vegetable oils being this huge component of the diet. And, you know, boy, the graphs are so disturbing where you can see the, the rate of consumption. So our grandparents had a few percentage of the diet was polyunsaturated fats, and now it’s up there to a third. It’s crazy.

Cate (00:42:29):
Yeah. It’s, it is insane. And, you know, it’s driven by, like you said, influencers who like, Ansel Keys has so many advocates now that are keeping his ideas alive. And these advocates are also conflicted. Like, because they’re not, not just because they’re getting money, I think, but also because they are like internally conflicted. They seem to truly believe that, you know, fat is unhealthy because I think they’re somewhat influenced by religion. Like a lot of these folks tend to come out of the Adventist religion. And the Adventists also say the same thing. They’re part of the temperance movement. Fat is kind of a sinful indulgence, and we need to cut down on those sorts of sinful indulgences because they’re unholy, right? And so the, when you listen to folks at Harvard talk about, you know, what a healthy diet looks like, they, they often will cite the American College of Lifestyle Medicines research, which is funded by the Adventist Church.

Cate (00:43:45):
And the Adventist hospitals all over the country are promoting that idea within medicine still today. And so they’re the, they are keeping this torch alive, that Ansel Keys lit back in the 1950s. So it’s really, it’s embedded and infested in the medical industry, and it’s most infested in the doctors who care the most and who believe the most about the link between diet and health and who are the least inclined. These doctors, the least inclined to just use drugs, but the diet that they recommend is high in Polyunsaturates. And so it doesn’t work as well as if they would just give better advice.

Brad (00:44:32):
How does, a highly regarded market chain, like Whole Foods market touting that they’re the healthiest place to go? How are they able to infest their hot bar and their shelves with products that have canola oil and the other Hateful Eight? I just, I still can’t grasp that because, you know, a company like Whole Foods is, is proudly departing from mainstream, nasty grocery stores that don’t care about your health. And they have a mission statement and they go into detail about how we scrutinize all the products, but there seems to be a segment of even the, the health conscious population that thinks these oils are okay.

Cate (00:45:15):
Yeah. Because doctors, it comes from doctors, the, you know, doctors will cite the Mediterranean diet as being, u full of olive oil and unsaturated fatty acids. And there’s a lot of supposed evidence that the Mediterranean diet helps with longevity and disease reversal dementia reduction that you can take people off of a junk food diet and put them on a Mediterranean diet and they will be healthier. But that’s only part of this story that what they’re not talking about is that when you take people off of a junk food diet and put them on a diet based on olive oil, you’re getting them off the vegetable oils. So it’s not that olive oil is particularly healthy. It’s that vegetable oils that you’re taking away from people are particularly unhealthy,

Brad (00:46:04):
Right? Any departure from a indiscriminate consumption of indulgent foods is going to represent a huge health awakening, including a strict vegan or a brown rice and celery juice two week cleanse. And all those things are, are gonna make the person feel great by comparison. But we’re, we’re talking about some of the stuff you mentioned earlier about, you know, this is a long-term, chronic oxidative stress producing diet. And that’s where we come into the problem. ’cause even the comparison, the shocking comparison that one serving a french fries is like smoking 20 to 25 cigarettes. Look, you know, I’m not gonna die if I smoke 20 to 25 cigarettes in my life. And I think we use some of that flawed thinking when we’re choosing, you know, a couple times a week to have a few french fries. It’s certainly not gonna kill you on the spot thanks to the extra processing, which you mentioned.

Brad (00:46:59):
It might kill me on the spot if I consumed straight up canola oil, soybean oil. But I, I think we use kind of, um, rationalizations when we let this stuff leak into our diet and possibly being unaware that 30% of all calories is somehow getting delivered by these oils. And maybe that can be a question rather than just a rant by Brad. Like, how do we get 30% of our calories coming from these oils when I list my food diary the last few days? And I, I didn’t write down soybean oil on the list. I just wrote down this, that, and this,

Cate (00:47:33):
Right? So, well, your food diary probably doesn’t include soy, soy oil at all. Yeah.

Brad (00:47:39):
Not as far as I know. But let’s, let’s take that deeper too and, and help people who are doing the very best to take that next step and, and really scrutinize.

Cate (00:47:48):
Yeah. So the average American, who doesn’t know that these oils are toxic is getting them whenever they eat out. And so it’s not just the, you know, like when I first started, I would just tell people, yeah, don’t cook with a vegetable oil. They’d be like, oh, no, don’t worry, Dr. Cate. I only use olive oil. But then I have to tell them that, you know, like, how, how many times a week do you eat out? And they’d be like, oh, not very often. Just two or three times. And you know that, that’s a lot because the third of those calories are gonna be coming from the vegetable oils because they will, they will be in the, like, if it was a deep fried and many, many things are deep fried that saturates the french fry. So french fries, you know, 30 to 40% of the calories in a french fry is fat, and it’s coming from the deep fryer fat.

Cate (00:48:36):
And the same with anything that’s deep fried. So whether it’s your tempura at your Japanese restaurant or, you know, onion rings or shrimp scampy, that’s deep fried. Your Monte Cristo sandwich, that used to be one of my favorites. It’s a deep fried club sandwich, turkey club. And, you know, just so many things at restaurants are deep fried, but then there’s all of the sauces, all like the aioli, mayonnaises, the dips, the things that you drizzle, those little drizzly things, that go over your meat or that that colors up the plate. There’s the desserts, there’s the, you know, the creams that are often made with hydrogenated oils or some other form of vegetable oil mixed with a fully hydrogenated oil. And, and then of course, it’s not just restaurants. We don’t think about this, but in school, like school, children eating lunches and snacks at school, they’re not getting the butter.

Cate (00:49:40):
They’re not getting, you know, lard or animal fat there, they’re getting just vegetable oil. All the fat is vegetable oil, unless it’s intrinsic to something like, say there’s some sort of like peanut butter there. But even peanut butter has vegetable oil added to it. All of the food service industry, which is everywhere, it’s in universities and colleges and workplaces and prisons and hospitals and nursing homes. So all of these foods, all of these places are just loaded with vegetable oils. And then the grocery store, like all the convenience food, the packaged goods your canned fish, a lot of your canned goods that, that are canned in oil, if you take a look at what kind of oil, it’s gonna be like a cotton seed or a soy oil or something like that. Crackers, stuff that we give our children snacks, those goldfish, prepared foods like chicken nuggets that we buy, you know, whether it’s at McDonald’s or not.

Cate (00:50:40):
Tater tots, uh, you know, lots of breakfast potatoes, it just goes on and on and on. And all of those are not made with olive oil or butter or lard or coconut oil or the healthy fats. They’re made with one of the Hateful Eight. So that’s how it gets up to 30%. And, you know, it’s like the world is trying to shove these oils down our throats, and it is because everybody is making money off of them. They’re cheap. Nobody knows they’re bad. People think they’re healthy. And then the other end of it is that when people get sick and go to the doctor, the healthcare industry is making a lot of money now too. So who’s gonna change the system? So you are, you are, you know, you Brad personally, me, myself, and you the listener, change the system for yourself. And it’s hard to avoid these things when you’re going out to eat. But, there are people now who are starting to help other people find seed oil free restaurants. So there’s apps that, that you can download to your phone that will help you find seed oil free restaurants in your area. And, you know, so it can be done

Brad (00:51:47):
<laugh>. You’re gonna get, like, your area’s gonna be an 800 mile radius, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. Hey, you can go to the cafe in Boulder. No, I think it’s gonna get better and better the more people put out the word like you do. And I was gonna ask you, how do these interfere with, how do the ingestion of these vegetable and seed oils interfere with burning body fat and therefore influence insulin resistance and diabetes and all these things that we have commonly been convinced to think that it’s slamming down all the carbs, producing too much insulin, the carbohydrate insulin model of obesity as the term goes. And now you’re implicating the vegetable oils as a major player. And then, you mentioned, you spoke seed oils and then also vegetable oils. And so, talk about this terminology. I think they’re just catchall to be more familiar, but they’re, they’re actually made mostly from seeds, not vegetables, but everyone knows them as vegetable oil. Is that why we talk that way?

Cate (00:52:55):
Yeah. So let’s talk about the terminology first and then let’s talk about how these vegetable oils are the main driver of obesity. So, the terminology is I had to create a term because there was no term for describing the oils that are the least healthy. So I created the term the Hateful Eight there. That’s it. So you just have to memorize the list. What are vegetable oils? Well, it’s an industry term that was invented over a hundred years ago to distinguish vegetable oils that were coming from things like cotton seed. At that time, that was like the main one, from whale oil, which were both being used to make soaps and lighting for lamps and perfumes and all these things. So it was mostly to distinguish it from animal, animal oil, right? Mm-Hmm. Which is whale oil.

Cate (00:53:37):
So then there were the vegetable oils. So the industry term is vegetable oil, and that’s the term that you will also see when your turn the package around and scan the ingredients. You’ll see may contain one or more of the following vegetable oils, and then it’ll list like soy or cotton seed or something like that. So vegetable oil is the industry term. Now, the term seed oil came along more recently because most of these, to help make the point that these are not, these oils are not coming from carrots and tomatoes and celery. They’re coming from seeds, right? And the seeds are, corn is a seed, soybean is a seed, you know, so, and, and on it goes, right? So they’re coming from seeds, but the terminology doesn’t really help you. Those two terms don’t help because, you know, some vegetable oil, like olive oil is healthy, coconut oil is healthy, and some seed oil, like sesame seed oil is actually a traditional oil. It’s not one of the members of the Hateful Eight. And it’s sesame seed oil is healthy. You can eat the crude oil, um, without having to refine it. And it is delicious. It’s been used for thousands of years. Um, and so, it’s not because it’s a seed that it’s bad. So Yeah. Does that clear that up?

Brad (00:54:51):
Yeah. It’s the nature of the raw materials is a simple way to, to think does this, does this, uh, raw material need to be heavily processed, refined with the use of chemical solvents and high temperature to yield an oil? And with an olive, the answer is no. You can go to the, the farm and watch them press it out,

Cate (00:55:09):

Brad (00:55:10):
And take a little sip. Yeah.

Cate (00:55:11):
Yeah, exactly. So, there is no industry term for that. That’s why I had to create the term the Hateful Eight and just need to memorize them. But that’s like the most important thing that you need to memorize <laugh>, because you don’t, if you avoid those, you are also avoiding so many other bad things that are added to foods, because those oils are also used to, to foods that have nasty stuff like dough conditioners and the antioxidants and the artificial flavors, right? So you don’t need to memorize all those chemical terms, just memorize the Hateful Eight oils. So maybe let’s dive into how they cause obesity, right? Because right now the focus really I think first was on calories, only, and then it, right? Like when, you know, when I went to school, It was calories and calories out, very simple.

Cate (00:56:01):
All calories are the same as the implication. But then along came The Atkins and the low carb folks who pointed out, well, you know, some carbohydrates actually have an impact on our insulin levels. And that might be driving the obesity epidemic too, because insulin makes you build fat. But what I say is the carb refined carbohydrates are empty calories, but they don’t have the toxicity and they don’t build the same kind of problematic body fat as the vegetable oils do. Hmm. So what’s problematic body fat? Problematic body fat is body fat that has a chemical composition that your cells cannot use to generate energy.

Brad (00:56:46):
Ooh, that’s an interesting distinction.

Cate (00:56:51):
Yeah. So it, what it is, why, what’s the difference? Well, it’s got too much polyunsaturates in it. So, because the seed oils are high in polyunsaturates are body fat becomes high in polyunsaturates. The, the polyunsaturates in our diet, you know, are, are probably 20 times 10 to 20 times what they, what they were, I’m sorry, the polyunsaturates in our body fat are probably, you know, 10 to 20 times what it has been historically, the on a percentage basis. So as these vegetable oils have increased in the food supply, so has the polyunsaturates in our body fat. Why, why is that? Well, because we can’t detoxify them, right? Like if we, they’re different than any other toxin because, you know, things like glyphosate, a healthy liver can actually detoxify some of that. And every time your blood circulates through the liver, it will detoxify

Cate (00:57:50):
the glyphosate takes a while, but it’ll get gone, right? Some of it does build up in our tissues, but very, very low concentrations. And it’s not composing our tissues. Vegetable oils are fat. Our body fat is composed of vegetable oil of the, of the polyunsaturates that came from vegetable oil. So that means our body fat now is released to be burned for energy. That’s not true with any of these other toxins. But mercury, we don’t try ourselves, don’t try to burn that for energy lead, right? The heavy metal toxins, all the artificial flavorings and so on. The other toxins in our food supply, the mycotoxins people talk about, these are not, you know, composing our tissue and our cells don’t try to burn them for energy. So vegetable oils has either a unique toxicity on our energy generating mitochondria. Mm. It basically shuts them down.

Cate (00:58:50):
There’s nothing else in the food supply that does that. When we have too much corn syrup, it doesn’t shut down our mitochondria. When we have too much sugar, it doesn’t shut down our mitochondria. Um, you know, nothing else does that. The vegetable oils do that because of their high polyunsaturates and the fact that they deplete our antioxidants and our mitochondria need antioxidants to function because we are always producing some oxidative stress, like you mentioned. And our bodies are designed to fight a certain amount, but vegetable oil overwhelms that shuts down a mitochondria. And then our mitochondria can’t get energy from our body fat. What’s our body fat for? To give us energy in a lot, you know,

Brad (00:59:35):
Stored energy supposedly,

Cate (00:59:37):
Right. Yeah. Yeah. That’s what, like, that’s the main thing. It has other things that it’s does too, like control our appetite, which it can’t do when it’s full of the seed oils either because it releases hormones, it’s supposed to, but those hormones don’t have the effect and it doesn’t release the same amount of hormones. So everything about vegetable oil destroys the ability of our body fat to sustain our energy between meals. And how so what does that, how does that make us fat? Well, we get hungry when our cells aren’t able to generate enough energy. We get, we get hungry. And that has to do with the fact that our cells will slurp in more sugar. We’ll lower our blood sugar. When our blood sugar drops, we get insanely hungry, we get hangry, we get hypoglycemia. So vegetable oils are making us hungry and overeat.

Cate (01:00:25):
And every study out there shows that people who are overweight eat more frequently. They eat more snacks, right? They often eat larger meals. They also make, you know, they have more dessert. But they eat more frequently and they’re eating more frequently because after a few hours, their blood sugar’s dropping ’cause their cells are slurping up too much blood sugar because why their body fat is not being, is not able to sustain their cells energy. Mm-Hmm. Now, now you may have heard that insulin is the reason, right? Have you heard this argument, Brad, that like, well, insulin keeps the fat trapped in the body fat so it doesn’t get released between meals. Mm-Hmm.

Brad (01:01:11):
<affirmative> Right. Excess insulin in the bloodstream. You’re, you’re in storage mode rather than burning mode.

Cate (01:01:16):
Yeah. Now, that’s true when we’re healthy, but when we’re insulin resistant, and most people are, the fat cells are insulin resistant too. So the reason insulin traps fat in the fat cells is because a functional, healthy fat cell will respond to insulin by picking up fat from the bloodstream. But when we’re insulin resistant, our fat cells are not functioning that way, and they will refuse to pick up the fat from the bloodstream. And so many studies have shown that people with type two diabetes have abnormally high fatty acids in their bloodstream. That’s why they have high triglycerides. Those came from fatty acids. Right. So it all adds up. Right. Like you can’t explain how there’s a lot of things that do not get explained by the insulin centric model of, I’m sorry. Yeah. By the, in the carb and insulin centric models of obesity, they don’t explain a lot of these phenomena. Like it doesn’t, it, it rests on the idea that between meals, your fat is locked in your fat closet. But that’s not true. When we actually measure free fatty acids in the blood of people who are insulin resistant, they have higher than normal free fatty acids.

Brad (01:02:26):
Right. Everyone’s familiar with the dangers of high triglycerides and how important that is on your blood work. And so that means there’s too much fat circulating in your bloodstream, but you’re not able to burn it.

Cate (01:02:38):
Your fat cells don’t wanna pick it up because they’re insulin resistant or it’s causing inflammation or, you know, something, the system’s not working. Right. Right. But vegetable oil is causing those phenomena. It’s, it’s not being caused by the sugar because, you know, sugar, how does sugar end up making us fat? Well, certainly if we eat a lot of sugar, it makes us gain weight. And how does it do that? Well, our body converts sugar, glucose molecules into fatty acid molecules that become triglycerides that get stored in our adipose. But the type of fatty acid, the type of fatty acid, is not polyunsaturated. We cannot make that when we convert glucose into fat, it’s the types of fats that our mitochondria can use for energy. So, back in the day before people were exposed to much vegetable oil, a hundred years ago, you could just tell people to cut out their carbohydrates and they would start burning their body fat and they would lose weight.

Cate (01:03:36):
It would melt off. They would not have problems. Mm-hmm. Right. Like, so if you’re a low carb a aficionado, you’ve probably heard of these stories about the Banting diet, about a doctor who first recommended low carb diets. And he had many, he had a famous patient whose name I can’t remember right now, sorry, um, that lost, like, just simply didn’t eat for, you know, quite a long time period. And, and he lost weight. No problem. That wasn’t the Banting diet, that was a fasting person. I’m getting my stories mixed up. Sorry. The Banting diet. He just said, you know, eat just meat and, you know, milk and eggs and dairy. And people had no problem and they lost weight because they weren’t insulin resistant. But we cannot do yet. It’s

Brad (01:04:12):
Like the original, the original keto diet from the 18, 18 hundreds was very successful.

Cate (01:04:18):
It was successful then.

Brad (01:04:20):
’cause the, yeah, the underlying physiology worked well enough to where you restrict your, your carbs, you, you restrict your insulin production, and then of course, you’re just accessing and burning stored body fat. Pretty simple.

Cate (01:04:31):
But the keto diet now doesn’t help people as much as it used to. And in fact, if you are following a keto diet and still eating a lot of vegetable oil, then it works no better than a high carb junk food diet because, well, vegetable oil is what puts the junk in junk food. So you are still having a lot of junk food in your diet if you’re having a keto diet that’s got vegetable oils in it, instead of being a vegetable oil free keto,

Brad (01:04:59):
Which you almost certainly are because you are taking this high chart of your calories and getting rid of carbs. So how are you gonna sustain yourself? You’re gonna be eating a ton of fat, and most likely a good portion of that fat, 30%, maybe more of your diet is gonna be from, the Hateful.Eight.

Cate (01:05:19):
Well, unless they read the Keto Reset. Right.

Brad (01:05:21):
Unless you’re very, very, you know, with incredible scrutiny and, you know, you know, still trying to emphasize the most nutritious foods, which unfortunately, as we saw Cate, seeing the emergence of the popularity of the keto diet, and then it kind of got bastardized into a bunch of processed products that said keto on the, on the package of, uh, potato chips, ice cream, whatever it was. And that kind of, I think, set people into, you know, un unsuccessful mode rather than the intended purpose was just to kind of, you know, do an experiment to, um, minimize the, you know, the indiscriminate intake of whatever calories were in your face. So any diet like that will work, but you gotta still understand the nutrition underneath is very important.

Cate (01:06:08):
So the Keto Reset was the first keto book, that specifically told people to stay away from vegetable oils. And you wrote it with Mark. That’s

Brad (01:06:18):
’cause we’re, it’s ’cause we hang out with you enough to appreciate that important message. Yeah.

Cate (01:06:24):
And I bring that up because before that, the Atkins diets didn’t specifically say, right. So the Keto Reset, um, was the most successful keto book in history when it was first released. You probably know that, right? Like it just shot through the roof. It was more successful in, in terms of having people adopt the keto diet than, than the Atkins books were. Because, and, and I think it was more successful because Atkins said you would use hwhatever oil, right? Like just when you make your salads, just whatever. Mm-Hmm. And you could use, you know, even margarine, he didn’t even k now about trans fats. Mm-Hmm. gUm, The new Atkins Revolution written by Dr. Westman in the early two thousands that did specifically say, don’t use margarine, but they still didn’t say what the Keto Reset said, which is, you gotta avoid the toxic, Didn’t have that term in there. But, yeah, you told people to stay away from the riujght oils and to use coconut and butter and, you know, the healthy fats instead. It was the first diet to specifically say that. And I truly think that that’s why it was so successful, because it worked better. Right.

Cate (01:07:36):
The keto diet isn’t the only diet you need to follow. You can still have some carbohydrates, in my opinion. You don’t need to have keto level carbohydrates. You can have, things like beans and high glycemic Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>, you know, whole food carbohydrates. But, but I think that it became super popular because before it got watered down with that, you know, dirty, lazy kind of keto that you were just referring to, where it was all the keto junk food. Before that the keto influencers were telling people how to make real food that was keto compliant, that was low carb, and they used healthy fats. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. And, and that’s why it took off like no other diet. You can look at the term keto on Google trends and you’ll see that it was like very, very low popularity until your book came out. Hmm.

Brad (01:08:24):
Thank you. I think, um, listeners might’ve thought you were joking when you said the term dirty keto, but that too became extremely popular trending term, like an actual thing that people wanted to follow. I I thought it was a, you know, I thought it was like a throwaway, uh, joke at first, and then it, then it became like a favorable, you know, plan and like a modification of strict keto to eng in indulgent, dirty keto. Pretty hilarious. See how, see how trends go. Um, I know we gotta, um, we, we gotta get to the finish line here, but, um, I think there’s an important, uh, comment you made about, you know, the, the fat that’s, um, not able to be burned for energy. And that’s where we get into big trouble. And that’s the, the, the driving cause of obesity. Um, is this something that we can identify when we distinguish between visceral fat or belly fat and subcutaneous fat that’s stored around the body

Cate (01:09:17):
When your insulin res, so the vegetable oils make you insulin resistant. And when you’re insulin resistant, your normal fat cells under your skin subcutaneous are resisting that push by insulin to build fat. So other cells, uh, will pick up the slack and you’ll build fat everywhere. You’ll build fat around your organs. That’s the visceral fat. Hmm. So yes, it’s a sign of insulin resistance and you don’t become insulin resistance without oxidative stress. And right now, the number one driver of oxidative stress is the vegetable oil. So you can tell, you can definitely tell, you can also tell by in a bunch of other ways. But the most important really is if you get hangry. If you feel like you get hypoglycemic, if you get headaches, if you go too long without eating, if you need to snack, if you’re one of those people that always carries a snack, chances are you are insulin resistant.

Cate (01:10:06):
But doctors don’t even know how to diagnose it. We don’t even know what a normal insulin level is. So I talk about all of that stuff in Dark Calories. Dark calories gives you everything you need to know to understand insulin resistance, your metabolic health, and then to escape this trap that you’re in where your body fat doesn’t work. So it makes you hungry and you get hungry and you keep gaining weight and building new body fat. That’s a trap. And there is a way to escape it, but you have to control oxidative stress. So in the last four chapters, the last third of Dark Calories is devoted to helping you get out of that trap and start taking control of your health. And you can reverse so many to terrifically horrible problems just with a better diet. And this makes, lots of diets will do that.

Cate (01:10:47):
The carnivore diet will do it. A keto, good keto diet will do it. Even a vegan diet that can help some people. But, um, but I use all, all I do is I follow an ancestral diet that gets rid of those four main toxic things that we talked about that are the defining feature of processed food and direct you to some healthy foods and help you gain the confidence that you need to go against your doctor’s advice. Who’s gonna tell you, you know, don’t eat butter, don’t eat saturated fat, don’t eat eggs. You need to be very confident when you walk into the doctor’s office <laugh> that you know more than him about nutrition. So if you’re ready for, uh, getting healthy, uh, Dark Calories is the book for you.

Brad (01:11:31):
Nice pitch. Very, very confident. Yeah. When you dine out, how do you navigate the menus and the traditions of chain restaurants? The traditions of the finest restaurants, the traditions of fast food? You know, we used to, um, I thought Chipotle did a good job with their initial marketing of being woke and conscious and, and sourcing locally. And you can go read on their thing. And of course, even a restaurant that seems to be health conscious is frying that meat up in, in rice brand oil and in Chipotle’s case. And so you do seem like you’re kind of hosed when you’re away from home. But I think there’s tips and tricks that you can, uh, deploy that that can help you. And

Cate (01:12:16):
What do you do out there? There’s different, yeah. So what, what I do when I go to a sit down restaurant is I just say to the server, Hey, do you have anything back there that you can cook for me right now? Al Manu, that’s the chef term, meaning like, cook it right now. Not par cooked, already cooked in vegetable oils, but cook for me right now in butter. And, you know, every single time I’ve asked for that at a sit down restaurant, they’ve actually had butter and they’ve actually had some sort of protein that they can just wrestle up real quick and I’ll eat that. Um, and, but the solutions are different. There are solutions for things for Chipotle and for fast food and for the mom and pop restaurant and the Mexican restaurants. And so different situations require different solutions. And I’ve delineated, uh, all of those in the back part of the book where I start giving people advice because, you know, a third of the book is devoted to the practical, how do I do this? And I need that much of the book to be devoted to that. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative> because it’s everywhere and everyone wants to feed it to you because it’s dirt cheap and you know, they don’t care about your health and they don’t even know that it’s bad for you. Smoke point is another thing that like, um, you’ll hear get pushback from restaurants because it has a high smoke point. So I talk about that in the book too.

Brad (01:13:30):
Hmm. Yeah. I mean, uh, what restaurant doesn’t have butter around? And the answer I’m gonna answer, it’s PF Chang’s. So one night we were out at PF Chang’s had a great hike in Las Vegas and the mountains outside of Vegas. And I, I sat down and said, um, can you make those Brussels sprouts, uh, with butter instead of oil? And the waiter said, I don’t think so. And I said, why don’t you go check? ’cause I, I’ll bet you it’s possible. And I was just smiling like, of course it’s possible there’s gonna be a stick of butter in a, in a giant restaurant. And, um, the person came back and said, no, I’m sorry. We can’t do it. And so I took the opportunity to write to corporate PF Chang’s. And, that’s one of my hobbies is trying to set the, the world straight and I’ll, you know, I’ll write the newspaper and, and then write again.

Brad (01:14:15):
And they didn’t answer me. So that really got me lit up into, into another hobby, which is, I’m not gonna give up. It’s just so disgraceful that they can’t even, you know, answer a very thoughtful message. And so I pushed it and pushed it, and I finally got an answer. And, um, they wrote me back like a, you know, a a a format, a template email with a $25 gift certificate to return to pf Chang’s to eat their nasty food that they refuse to even, you know, depart a little bit from cooking their, their food in the in the seed oils. And

Cate (01:14:47):
They can’t. Yeah. Right. So this is some something else that we ordinary citizens have no idea, but like all of the rest, a lot of the chains they outsource to bring in as many like pre-cooked, ready to eat kind of things. And all they’re doing is re you know, microwaving it or Yeah. Deep frying it or something. So ready to eat so they have no need for butter. So, you know, if if they don’t have anything, then, then what you can just do is just have them steamed, right? Like if they have a steamer <laugh>, but, but they may not, but, so yeah, the chain restaurants are a problem, but, so there are some chains that are doing better and, uh, you know, Andrew Weil, um, has a chain called True Food. And if you don’t have a True Food in your area, maybe, you can, you know, lobby the, the good folks of Sacramento and Lake Tahoe where you live in, uh, <laugh>, seasonally <laugh> Sure. To bring in a true foods.

Brad (01:15:43):
Um, so when you’re at home, uh, the big one would be what you’re cooking with if you’re, uh, cooking in the, in the stove or the oven, and any other tips for, you know, optimizing your home and, and get the, getting these oils out of the house.

Cate (01:15:59):
Well, you know, there’s lots of tips in the book, but what I didn’t really emphasize in the book that’s just so important, and so we’re seeing right here, is that falling in love with cooking is really the secret. Mm. Yeah. Don’t, don’t be afraid of cooking. Um, and it takes a lot to get over your fear. Start with something really easy. And, and that actually is what I, uh, created in my t my weekly. I have a two week challenge in there, and I give you a list of a whole bunch of really simple options just to kind of rebuild people’s confidence that they can make healthy food in a matter of minutes. They just need permission to, to use, uh, certain ingredients that they’ve been told are unhealthy. You know, things like butter and cream cheese and red meat and um, you know, that sort of thing. Uh, and peanut butter, right? Like, uh, that’s a super healthy mixed peanut butter with ricotta cheese and a tiny little bit of honey. Ooh, that is so delicious. You, you, you would think you are eating a peanut butter cookie. <laugh>.

Brad (01:17:01):
Get into it. People <laugh> Dark Calories available now. We can learn more at DrCate.com. You like to send people there?

Cate (01:17:09):
Yes, I do. Thank you.

Brad (01:17:11):
D-R-C-A-T-E, DRCATE.com and, um, get this wonderful book. I imagine when you, when you get through Dark Calories, you’ll be inspired to look at Cate’s other great books like Fat Burn Picks, Deep Nutrition and all the wonderful world of, uh, taking responsibility for your own health. You’re such a great crusader, Cate. It’s a pleasure to connect with you and help promote this book. So definitely go grab this book, people, it’ll change your life.

Cate (01:17:35):
Well, thank you, Brad. It’s been great speaking with you again about vegetable oils and how they’re so bad.

Brad (01:17:43):
Dr. Cate Shanahan, the one and only. Thanks for listening, watching everybody. Thank you so much for listening to the B.rad Podcast. We appreciate all feedback and suggestions. Email, podcast@bradventures.com and visit bradkearns.com to download five free eBooks and learn some great long cuts to a longer life. How to optimize testosterone naturally, become a dark chocolate connoisseur and transition to a barefoot and minimalist shoe lifestyle.


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