Blood Sugar

#154 Protein on Ketogenic Diet, Gut Cells and Time-Restricted Feeding

by Mike Mutzel


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Mike Mutzel Podcast High Intensity Health

Links Discussed in this Podcast:

Jeffery Bland, PhD Podcast: Color Rich Foods

Mark Burhenne, DDS Podcast: Preventing Sleep Apnea

Bruhenne Mouth Taping Article:

Join the Weight Loss Masterclass

Show Notes:

01:37 High Protein Diets: Many of us are concerned about eating too much protein, causing gluconeogenesis, the formation of glucose from amino acids. Recent studies have shown that even if you have a high protein diet while in ketosis, you can maintain high levels of beta-hydroxybutyrate, the main ketone.

02:25 Protein during Ketosis: Experiment. Professional recommendations do not mean that it works for you. In addition, you are constantly changing and adapting. A study out of the Netherlands showed that when individuals embarked upon a high protein diet, beta-hydroxybutyrate, the main ketone body linked with beneficial changes within the immune system, anti-aging, and increased mitochondrial biogenesis, was elevated.

03:48 Deanna First Stab at Being Keto-Adapted: Deanna experiments with diet. In 2013 she started intermittent fasting, meaning that she had a restricted window of eating. Her first meal was at 1 or 2 pm and her last meal was at about 8 pm. She ate a lot of fat and high protein. It was a low fiber diet, with no fruit or berries. She did a lot of cardio. At first she became lean, but soon found that she was losing strength.

05:41 Dietary Diversity: Going lower carb is a great starting place. Focus still needs to stay on the gut microbiome and dietary diversity. The higher diversity of your gut microbiome, the lower the prevalence of things like type-2 diabetes, autoimmune disease, obesity, and neurologic disorder. The more diverse your diet, the more diverse and robust your microbiome becomes. If we focus too much on ketosis, we forget about the microbiome. Listen to your body. Eat real whole foods.

08:32 Microbiome: Your microbiome is more metabolically active than your liver. It has over 6500 different functions: detoxification, affecting lipid signaling, affecting neurologic function and much more.

10:30 Insulin Resistance: Turmeric and garlic are high in carbohydrates. They won’t spike your blood sugar, but they will effect insulin signaling. Most of us believe that we become insulin resistant because we consume carbohydrates, which spikes blood sugar and forces the pancreas to release insulin, creating a vicious cycle until the receptors become resistant. This is an obsolete model. Insulin resistance begins in the GI tract with gut enteroendocrine and other cells within the small intestine villi. They are responsible for communicating the message of macronutrients to the rest of the body. When they see proteins or lipids, they send a heads-up to the pancreas and the liver. Insulin resistance begins when these enterocytes becoming dysfunctional. It is not at the pancreatic level or the muscle level initially.

12:39 Root Cause Resolution: Root cause resolution is a tenet of functional medicine. Western medicine does not generally address lifestyle or other causes. How can we go back to the gut and fix the issue of enterocyte signaling dysfunction? The phytonutrients in vegetables impact functionality of these enterocytes. If you don’t include phytonutrients, you do not reap the full benefits of being keto-adapted.

14:16 It Starts With Healing the Gut: If you are not getting the results you want, reevaluate your gut health and make improvements. It is something that should be worked upon every day with daily meditation, eating fermented foods, chewing your food thoroughly, and balancing bacteria. A host of diseases start with insulin resistance: elevated cholesterol, elevated blood lipids, high blood pressure, and neurologic dysfunction in the brain and myo cognitive impairment, dementia, and Alzheimer’s.

15:45 The Satiating Effect of Fats: We shove food into our mouths on the go. We need to chew our food. We should eat with community, with friends and family, talking about their day. Eat slowly. With a ketogenic diet, we don’t need to eat as frequently. You won’t feel as hungry. The fats we ingest stimulate the enteroendocrine cells within the GI tract. Lipids are satiating because they release the incretin hormones: GLP-1, GLP-2, CCK, and GIP-1. When you eat refined carbohydrates, you do not stimulate these gut hormones. The level of impact correlates to the phytocomposition of the food.

18:28 One or Two Meals A Day on Keto? Everyone is individual. Mike and Deanna workout hard 5 days a week and found that they needed to eat more than once a day. You need to restrict the number of meals you eat if you are on a ketogenic diet. Gut cells store lipids for up to 18 hours. It means that the gut is a reserve, a controlled release meal, and you don’t need to eat as much food.  The mindset of eating multiple meals/snacks each day and grazing becomes pathologic. Timing your intake of fat and carbohydrates depends upon what works for you. Try a different method for 4 weeks and then change one variable. One of the main causes of type-2 diabetes is through endotoxin, the absorption of gram negative bacterial components and particulates. They enter through chylomicrons, the fat spherical structures of dietary fats.

24:56 DLDL/LDL Cholesterol: DLDL and LDLs neutralize endotoxin. Statins are prescribed to lower LDL cholesterol. Could the increase in LDL cholesterol in middle age be a compensatory response of the body to neutralize the bacterial component? By eating a high phytonutrient diet and cutting down on processed lipids that absorb endotoxins, your lipid levels go down. Insulin sensitivity is part of the lipid level equation. Mike believes that the lower lipid levels are correlated with lower entry of endotoxin particles. Your cholesterol levels should lower when you are on a ketogenic diet. If they are not, you might have gut permeability issues or high levels of gram negative bacteria that contain endotoxin.

28:03 Testing: It is a good idea to test and track your triglycerides. Researchers and cardiologists are beginning to suggest doing a post meal blood lipid test, rather than fasting. Heart disease doesn’t occur in the fasted state. It better measures how your metabolism responds to what you ingest.

30:18 Artificial Sweeteners: Synthetic sweeteners like sucralose and aspartame reduce GI bacterial diversity. In animal studies, synthetic sweeteners perturb incretin hormones, which are released from the GI tract that effect post meal processing of food. Many retail sports nutrition products contain synthetic sweeteners.

32:28 Craving Carbs: If you aren’t sleeping well, you tend to crave carbs. Maybe you aren’t eating enough carbs, or you are eating way too much. Maybe you need to adjust your macros or your training. You can stay in ketosis with a very small amount of natural sugar.

33:59 Mouth Taping: Mike and Deanna have just begun mouth taping during sleep. Nose breathing during the day and during sleep is important. Mouth breathing during the day could instigate sleep disordered breathing and sleep apnea. Place a piece of 3-M micropore paper tape across your lips at bedtime. Think of it as a biofeedback device since you will note a stuffy/clogged nose if you eat/drink something to which you react. Sometimes that hangover effect from red wine is from our poor sleep caused by clogged nasal passages. If you track your sleep with a sleep cycle ap, you can see a positive difference from mouth taping. Mike finds that he can recall his dreams, an indication of deep sleep. Deanna has more energy and is more alert.

38:48 Sleep: Quality sleep is important because that is where fat burning and cellular repair occurs. Your brain restores during quality sleep. Turn off the lights. Make a routine of sleep and value it. Sleep is a performance drug. Shut down the computer at least an hour before bed, or use blue light blocker glasses and the flux ap.






  1. Have question after watching your video for someone like myself with autoimmune disease low thyroid I read we need complex carbs to help convert the t4 over to the t3 and assist in getting the thyroid medication into our cells, what are your thoughts?

    • Great question, Teri!

      While glucose may be needed to make cellular energy in the T4 to T4 conversion, it can be derived from ketones or protein. Meaning you’re OK going low carb–the body has crafty ways of deriving cellular energy other macronutrients!

      So in brief, going low carb is OK even if you’re hypothyroid.

      Thanks, Teri!


  2. Could you please provide the link to the mentioned higher protein intake & keto study? Also, I think you mentioned posting the article on post meal blood testing, could you also provide me with that link as well? Thank you so much guys!

    • Hi there Rob,

      Here you go:

      Veldhorst, MA. 2012. Gluconeogenesis and protein-induced satiety. Br J Nutr. 2012 Feb;107(4):595-600

      Fine EJ, Feinman RD. Thermodynamics of weight loss diets. Nutr Metab (Lond) 2004; 1: 15.



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