nutrition-fitness-weight-loss-health-coach

 

The Ketogenic Diet is a tried and tested method that has been used as early as the 1920s and 1930s. It is a popular topic that is being advocated by many health and wellness leaders because it delivers very beneficial results.

In today’s episode, Dr. Michael VanDerschelden, a well-known chiropractor and the author of The Scientific Approach to Intermittent Fasting, shares the relation of intermittent fasting and the ketogenic diet. Through his practice at the Bergman Family Chiropractic Center in Huntington Beach, California, he is able to help patients who have given up on traditional medicine to resolve their health issues.

Dr. VanDerschelden also shares his passion about nutrition and maintaining a healthier lifestyle through his YouTube channel, which has over 100,000 views to date. In this episode, he provides insights on intermittent fasting, the value of ketones, and the value of cycling ketosis to improve your quality of life.

“Health is not how you feel, it’s really how you’re functioning.”
– Dr. Michael VanDerschelden

On Today’s Episode of the Low Carb Leader:

  • Michael explains the chronic, stressful physiological state that a majority of people are in and the destructive cycle of hormonal imbalance.
  • How ketones are the key to fixing our health concerns, particularly in remedying the crashes and cravings that come with having hormonal imbalance.
  • The process that they go through with their patients to assess, analyze, and address their health issues.
  • Cycling through ketosis to increase your quality of life.
  • The importance of taking care of your spinal cord and how making the necessary spinal adjustments are the key to improving a person’s quality of life.

 

Dr. Mike’s Tips to Transition into a Healthier Lifestyle

  • Get into an intermittent fasting regiment.
  • Get moving. Incorporate exercise into your daily activities.
  • Go back to mother nature. Sunlight and even walking barefoot provides many health advantages.
  • Go see a chiropractor to check your spine and understand what adjustments are needed.
  • Get back to the basics.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Dr. Mike

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Read Podcast Transcript

027 – The Power of the Ketogenic Diet with Dr. Michael VanDerschelden

DAN:
Hello, and welcome to The Low Carb Leader podcast. You have joined me for Episode 27.
Today we have Dr. Mike VanDerschelden. Dr. Mike is a chiropractor who focuses on functional medicine, nutrition, fitness. He has an amazing presence on YouTube. A little bit about Dr. Mike. He grew up in Seattle, Washington. He was an avid snowboarder and tennis player. He originally wanted to be a dentist to follow his father, but he decided to become a chiropractor so that he could treat in a preventative way. He went to the Los Angeles College of Chiropractic where he received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree, and he works with Dr. Bergman, a chiropractor who also has an amazing presence on YouTube. They both practice in Huntington Beach. Dr. Mike has been kind of a fitness gym rat his whole life, he said, and it’s really great that he has chosen this practice because he is helping a lot of people along with his partners.
So before we get into the interview I do want to just comment on our 14-day Tabata challenge. We have a lot of people all over the world that are participating, and they’re posting every day on the Facebook page. I am sending out daily motivational emails. But it appears that those that are in the Tabata challenge have no need for motivation. They are actually motivated 1000 times more than I am. They are doing workouts that are extremely intense, and I’m not even sure I could do them. I created two pretty basic workouts for Tabata, and Monique, who lives in Mississippi, was kind enough to create a pretty intense workout, and that way those new to the Tabata exercise regimen could start slow. But what I am finding is that they’re taking the basic, modifying it to pretty advanced and then doing the four-minute Tabata like eight times. And some of them are doing it like eight times before they go run a 10K. So I think we have the whole gamut of beginning Tabata to super advanced, which is very cool. And you can join the Facebook group. Just go to The Low Carb Leader, sign up for the Tabata challenge, and that way you can get the links to the Facebook group. And now they’re posting pictures from where they live all over the world, so from England, to Australia, to Canada, United States, everywhere. So very cool. This is just an opportunity for us to grow as a community and do things together and motivate each other. And it’s been a lot of fun.
So let me remind you, if you would, share this podcast with others. We are sharing a lot of valuable information. You’ll see from today’s interview with Dr. Mike, he goes into detail about intermittent fasting, the value of ketones and why you should cycle your ketosis rather than stay in ketosis. He just wrote a book called The Scientific Approach to Intermittent Fasting. So Dr. Mike is very knowledgeable about these subjects, and I know you will learn a lot. So please share this with others. And I encourage you to subscribe to the podcast if you enjoy it, and visit me at The Low Carb Leader Facebook page. I’m also on Twitter @DanielLPerryman and on Instagram @thelowcarbleader. All right, let’s get to the interview. I know you will enjoy it, and I know you will learn a lot.

Welcome, Dr. Mike. How are you?

DR. MIKE:
I am doing fantastic. How about you?

DAN:
I’m doing great. So you are out in California, I see. Correct?

DR. MIKE:
Yes, we are in Orange County, Huntington Beach, California. It’s about 70° already, so it’s good stuff.

DAN:
I’m looking outside. There’s snow on the ground. I’m in Illinois. I used to actually live out in San Diego, and I have a bunch of family in Anaheim Hills, and so I know the area a little bit, but it was back in the early ‘90s. So I definitely miss the weather, for sure.

DR. MIKE:
But at the same time Illinois is nice. You got all four seasons there. Here it’s just kind of like sunny and clear every day.

DAN:
Yeah, that’s a pretty good thing right now since I’m staring at snow. Anyway, so tell us about yourself. Where did you grow up, education, your hobbies, your interests?

Dr. Mike’s Background

DR. MIKE:
Absolutely. I grew up in Seattle, Washington. More specifically about 45 minutes south of Seattle in an area called Lake Tapps. But I’m from Washington. Went all the way through undergrad there. I went to Western Washington University with a major in kinesiology, pre-physical therapy, exercise science. And initially I thought I was going to go into the dental school, dental field and kind of follow the footsteps of my father. But basically kind of had an epiphany as I was going through the interview process that I’m just – kind of took a step back and just thought I do not want to look in a mouth all day long eight hours a day. And so basically had this career epiphany. Didn’t want to do that. Wasn’t sure what I wanted to do once I graduated undergrad. So basically me and my best friend then in 2008, right when I graduated, we moved down to Huntington Beach, California, where I’m at today, and really a year later I found my calling in the field of chiropractic and then went to the four-year chiropractic college at Los Angeles College of Chiropractic and then graduated from there in 2013. And here I am.

DAN:
Did you ever want to be a PT?

DR. MIKE:
I did. I wanted to be – I thought I wanted to be a PT. PTs are great, but then after looking at a lot of the research I was looking at – and I was also a part-time personal trainer at the time, and I had a chiropractic client who I was training, and he was just like you know listen, if you become a chiropractor you’re going to be a doctor in this field. You take many physical therapy courses in chiropractic college. So you’re going to be able to incorporate all that stuff, and you basically will be a primary care physician, as well. And he just kind of sparked my curiosity about the entire brain, spinal cord, nervous system and how that controls everything, and it really just resonated with me. And that really was my calling. I wanted to be some type of doctor. I just didn’t want to be the doctor that pushes pills all day. I think we have enough problem with all that, and so I wanted to kind of take the opposite approach and actually help people get healthy and get off their medications by actually fixing their lifestyle, by fixing their nervous system, those degenerative areas, and get their bodies functioning optimally.

DAN:
I think a lot of people hear the word “chiropractor” and think that you go through – I believe it’s three years, correct? Is it three or four?

DR. MIKE:
It’s 3 ½ years, but there’s no break. I’ll just say – and so basically you don’t have those long summer vacations and stuff. So it is a four-year typical program. You condense it into 3 ½ years by not having those three-month summer breaks.

DAN:
I think most people think you spend 3 ½ years cracking backs. But just tell us a little bit about what classes you actually go through.

Chiropractic Study

DR. MIKE:
You actually – I mean if you compare the curriculums of medical school and chiropractic school it’s very similar hours. However, when medical school – and I mean there’s great medical doctors out there. I love all of those people. But they are doing a lot more hours into pathology, into what makes humans sick and die versus in disease processes. We spend a lot more time with anatomy and physiology, what constitutes health and what causes people to live and excel. So just a little bit different curriculum. Honestly for the first two years in chiropractic college you don’t even adjust. You’re learning palpation skills, but mostly you’re taking the anatomies, the physiologies, all of those science classes before you even – pathology, histology – you’re doing all of that stuff before you even really lay your hands on an adjustment.

DAN:
That’s a great explanation. Did you know going into chiropractic school that you were going to end up doing what you do now with nutrition and healthy lifestyles, or did that come after you came out of school?

DR. MIKE:
No, it actually came before school, and that’s why it sparked my interest in PT because I was always working out all throughout undergrad and everything. My kind of college job was a personal trainer. So my part-time thing. So I was always doing that. I was kind of just a gym rat all my life and just really into like exercise, nutrition, just everything I could do. So I knew that when I would become a chiropractor one day that I would devote a lot of my practice into not just fixing people’s spines, nervous systems to get them functioning properly, but also to fix those other lifestyle factors, as well, like the nutrition, the diet. So I already knew I was going to kind of go in there, and I just kind of found my niche where I’m at now.

Why Ketones are the Answer

DAN:
Okay, so today we’re going to be talking about intermittent fasting, ketogenic diets and how you manage your patients. So you want to just tell us a little bit about what intermittent fasting is, ketogenic, and we’ll just kind of talk through your approaches.

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, and I mean I just wrote a book on The Scientific Approach to Intermittent Fasting. About a quarter to a half of it is specifically on the ketogenic diet. But they’re just – they’re so closely related. So you really can’t talk about one and not the other. Basically, as everyone knows now, we have a massive problem going on. You’re looking at the average human being in today’s society. People are lethargic. They have no brain functioning. They have short-term memory loss. They’re fat. They’re sedentary. They just don’t have the energy to do anything. And really what it comes down to is that they’re in a chronic stressful physiology. They’re in a sympathetic-dominant state, which causes, as many of you know, a massive increase in stress hormones being flooded into the human body, your cortisols, your noradrenalins, your adrenalines. And then that in turn obviously is going to break down energy into blood sugar. But then your body releases massive amounts of insulin to counteract that rise in blood sugar. And so you really have this kind of unstable blood sugar going on. And when the blood sugar is going down it causes massive food cravings for the individual. So people start eating sugar, all those things that they crave, trans fats, hydrogenated fats and sugar.

In addition, your body is also breaking down its own protein stores via gluconeogenesis to put blood sugar back into the system. But then insulin gets released again. So it becomes literally this never-ending cascade of just sickness. And so to stop this entire process I realized that the answer is ketones. Ketones literally is the answer to fix all of that because that’s going to give you a steady supply of not just energy, but I always call it biodiesel. It’s clean energy. You basically have a lot less free radical production, a lot less reactive oxygen species as a byproduct of keto metabolism. And since you’re getting ketones from your stored and ingested fat, you’re going to have a steady supply through that forever, and you’re not going to suffer from those crashes and those cravings.

DAN:
And when you’re having those roller coaster ups and downs with sugar, your body is driving you to eat sugar. So I think people need to realize that it almost gets beyond their control and their will power, right?

DR. MIKE:
It is. It’s hormonal. It’s ghrelin. It’s cholecystokinin, CCK. But I mean glucose is dependent on the foods we eat. So we get up, and we start our day off with the most important meal of the day supposedly, breakfast, and then you eat 2 ½, 3 hours, every 2 ½, 3 hours after that, small meals throughout the day, everyone advocates. You’re constantly replenishing glucose. So when that glucose goes down and that’s the only energy system we’ve been adapting to, obviously you want to fuel more glucose into the system. And so that’s why we keep getting hungry and hungrier. But we have this ultimate source of metabolism, ketone metabolism, that our body never taps into. So it’s kind of like a biological hack, if you will. That hacking word is being used a lot now, but really it’s just trying to find ways in our physiology that are untapped that we can maximize naturally. And that’s what I’m all about.

DAN:
And getting rid of the sugar is how you can become fat adapted.

DR. MIKE:
Exactly. And it’s just like you mentioned. Similarly to intermittent fasting, when you go through periods without eating, well guess what; that blood sugar, that stored blood sugar in the form of glycogen, those stores get reduced. So then your body is forced to go after an alternate energy source. But only after those are reduced will your body go after that. But if we’re eating carbs every 2 ½, 3 hours, we’re constantly replenishing that energy system. So our body is forced to never go to that alternate energy system and go after keto metabolism.

Who is Looking for Chiropractic Care?

DAN:
With your patient population I would take it you’re seeing a lot of obese patients now?

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, I mean typically when people first come in it’s their last resort. They’ve tried every medical doctor. They’re on countless amounts of drugs. Many of them have operations on them, these failed back surgeries. So many of them, they’re seeing us through YouTube from all around the world. Just yesterday patients from Australia, from Senegal, from Canada, all sorts of Canada. I mean you’re talking Edmonton. You’re talking Calgary, BC. But really everywhere around the world finding us through YouTube, just looking for answers as a last resort. That’s the most common.

DAN:
What type of physical problems are they showing up with?

DR. MIKE:
Every single chronic disease. Alzheimer’s, they’re coming with heart disease, massive heart stents, bypass. They’re coming in with – almost everyone has a thyroid issue nowadays. So either they have their thyroid removed, or they’re on just a thyroxine or some type of thyroid medication. They’ve had histories of strokes. Really you see almost every single person, almost probably one in 20 are coming in for wellness patients just to maintain optimum function where everyone else is usually coming in with some type of ailment that hasn’t been fixed by a traditional medical doctor or in that type of field.

DAN:
That’s incredible. Did you think that going into chiropractic your practice was going to be like this, or did you think it would be more healthy people coming, athletes, or what did you expect?

DR. MIKE:
I envisioned a family practice, but very similar to what you just mentioned. I thought it was going to be like healthy people coming in just to maintain optimal function, and it turns out that we do have those, and we actually get people to that state, and then we create lifetime patients because they realize that life is just better when you are well-adjusted and your nervous system is free to flow optimally. But what really came down to it is that people are sick. People are just severely sick out there, and I mean if the average person over 40 is on multiple meds, I mean of course they’re sick. And I didn’t really quite visualize what I’m doing now when I was in school.

DAN:
Just logistically, so you’re probably doing consults through Skype. If they need adjustments and they live – do you just refer them to another chiropractor, or how does that work?

DR. MIKE:
Well, we try, but it seems like if you go to a bad restaurant it doesn’t mean all restaurants are bad. There’s bad doctors in every field. There’s bad everything in every type of field. So some people, you know, it’s hard to find a competent chiropractor to refer out, especially to all these places in the world. So we have things like Facebook groups and stuff where if I need to find a chiropractor in England or something I can throw out a Facebook post and try to see if there’s anyone out there. But honestly what people end up doing is that they’ll fly down to our clinic for a week or two, or a month, or three months at a time, and they’ll make living arrangements and everything and basically get multiple treatments in one day.

DAN:
That is amazing.

DR. MIKE:
So it’s not just the one adjustment thing. But then again, we don’t take insurance because we will never – I am never going to have a third-party dictate the care you need. It’s just unethical in my opinion. Will not do it. They don’t pay for preventative care. They don’t care. It’s not healthcare. It’s sick care. If it was healthcare they would be paying for your supplements, for organic, grass-fed meats, nutrition, everything. They don’t pay for any of that. The only thing they really want to pay for is drugs and surgery.

DAN:
I work in a hospital. We treat the sick, definitely.

DR. MIKE:
Exactly. And they all have a place for that. But to get healthy versus emergency care, those are two different scopes. I think people just need to know the scope they’re in and practice in that scope.

DAN:
So what percent are local people, and what percent come in?

DR. MIKE:
Our definition of local now has expanded. So if you’re from California you’re a local, and if you’re from out of California you’re a non-local. And it’s about 50-50 honestly. Maybe 60-40 local, but people who are driving anywhere from two, three hours or less, that’s just kind of our new definition of local because YouTube really in just kind of recording our weekly lectures on YouTube, that really has just – that has grown way beyond what we even thought was possible. And we never thought that we’d be getting patients attracting all over the world from just recording our health talks that we do every Tuesday night. But that has just skyrocketed.

DAN:
Your views are huge on those YouTubes.

DR. MIKE:
The first day you release a video you’re talking three, four, 5000 views in a day.

DAN:
That’s incredible.

DR. MIKE:
It is incredible, and it’s really cool. And people are hungry for this stuff. They’re hungry for health. They’re looking for answers.
Treating the Chiropractic Patient

DAN:
So when a patient comes to you, the typical obese patient, kind of walk through what –

DR. MIKE:
The process [inaudible 0:18:11.3]?

DAN:
Yeah, the process from the beginning to the end. And what is – how you set goals and what tests you do.

DR. MIKE:
Well the first is we want to make sure that we are the right doctor to help them. So that’s why we do an in-depth exam, you know. We’re doing neurological tests, reflexes. We do a full set of digital x-rays, assuming they’re not pregnant or infants and stuff. But we do a full set of digital x-rays, and we do things called stress x-rays. So we’re putting your body in these certain positions to really test if there is perfect motion between each segment, which there should be. But in addition, we do heart rate variability, basically measuring the autonomic system. We’re doing EMG muscle analysis making sure the temperature and the tone of each muscle on either side of the spine is even and symmetrical. So we do a lot of other testings like that. But it’s a two-part appointment for a new patient. We first – the first appointment is just gathering a ton of information. And then usually the next appointment the report of findings will be coming a different date. They’re sometimes the next day where we can kind of gather all that information, interpret it, mark the x-rays and then go over our findings and what our best recommendation is going forward.

DAN:
So the people who move down for a while, so you do the testing and then you create a treatment plan?

DR. MIKE:
Absolutely, yeah. So with those people coming down, because I mean we’ve all heard it; once you go to a chiropractor you have to keep going forever. And it’s really not true. But most people find out they actually want to stick with that. It’s just like once you eat a healthy meal are you done forever? No, once you’re done brushing your teeth once do you have to keep doing it? Yes. And your spine is no different. The problem is that your spine and nervous system, you can’t see that through a mirror. So obviously if you don’t brush your teeth for a couple days you’re going to start to see plaque. Well, your spine starts to degenerate, and that degeneration then creates this nociceptive, these stress firings to the brain, creating this stress response in the body. And the stress response is actually what leads to high blood sugar, insulin resistance, high blood pressure. And it can end up down-regulating brain functioning short-term memory. But that’s often the physiological chronic stress response. And so we get people under care, and I’m kind of the nutrition and exercise guy on staff. So they’ll schedule appointment with me personally where we go over kind of broad nutritional guidelines and exercise guidelines because I’m trying to maximize everything they do outside the office so they can get better faster, basically.

DAN:
What percent of your patients do you put on ketogenic or low-carb diets?

Intermittent Fasting and Ketosis Cycling

DR. MIKE:
I recommend it to everybody. With that said, people who really utilize it – it’s just kind of like what you see today. Not many people go full on in and out, but the intermittent fasting has really taken off. So they’re not really applying ketogenic diet necessarily, but they are doing the intermittent fasting, which is cool because that way you’re still able to kind of cycle through a very mild ketosis, maybe 0.2 mM, maybe up to 0.3. So they’re not getting into that clinical range, which is fine. But most people have no problem, and almost everyone implements the intermittent fasting, and they love it and never go back.

DAN:
Do you usually have them just skip breakfast? Is it kind of a window of eating, or do you alternate-day fasting?

DR. MIKE:
I’m a daily guy. I don’t like alternate-day fasting. I don’t like two days of fasting a week. I like doing the same things every day. I like making it a pattern because it’s so much easier to stick to. If we’re eating freely throughout one day and the next day you’ve got to not eat, it creates too much variation, and I just find that with human behavior we need more of those consistent patterns to keep a routine going. And so I do the daily one, but sometimes I’ll do extended fasts like maybe once every couple months or so. But usually those extended fasts, I kind of incorporate a ketogenic diet into those extended fasts, me personally. But most every patient just does a form of intermittent fasting, and it’s usually typically skipping breakfast because people do not like to go to bed hungry. So skipping breakfast is usually the easiest thing to do.

DAN:
We talk a lot about that. Once you get on a fat-adapted diet it’s pretty easy not to eat. Those that eat a lot of carbs, they can’t understand how you can go a while without eating. But for me personally it’s very easy not to eat because I stay pretty ketogenic. How long does it take once you start transitioning a person from a carb-based diet to a fat-based? It takes 7 to 10 days or whatever, but do you get them through the bad carb flu time period, or do they struggle with that?

DR. MIKE:
Even in the like last year or something just like my knowledge and my recommendations on incorporating this has changed pretty drastically. I used to think like a ketogenic diet was very good just doing continuously. I now am not so sure about that recommendation. I do think cycling is a lot better. But going into keto metabolism, it kind of has a muscle memory, if you will. So I do believe that everyone should go that first two weeks strictly on a ketogenic diet when they first incorporate this because – and you’ve got to test your urine or blood test. I just use the urine ketone strips to make sure you get into something – you know, ideally like to see above 1 mM, at least above 0.8. But you’ve got to kind of get your body to transition to that period. And obviously during that transition period you go through that keto flu-like symptoms of lethargy, kind of some headaches, lack of energy. But I find that incorporating massive amounts of bone broth, which I do daily anyway, is a great tonic for that because you’re getting massive amounts of healthy Himalayan salt. You’re getting healthy amounts of potassium. And then if you eat avocados, which you should, you’re getting tons of magnesium as well. So usually those three nutrients alone help with the keto flu transition because people think oh this ketogenic diet sucks. It’s like well that’s because you’re not in ketosis yet. You’re in the transition period. Just wait until you hit ketosis. Then your cravings go away. But it’s just like quitting caffeine, if you wanted to do that or something. You’ve kind of got to expect a little transition period of your body kind of in a shock mode and kind of trying to adapt as much as possible.

DAN:
You mentioned cycling through ketosis. Talk a little bit about what would you recommend for the pattern.

DR. MIKE:
Okay, so what I typically recommend – so first, if no one has ever been into actual clinical ketosis, or even if they think they did because they were on the Atkins diet, I still say okay, erase all of that. We’re going to first go two weeks into full-on ketosis. So typically the night before you start I’ll have them eat a low-carb dinner. That morning, which is going to be my typical morning anyway, you add caffeine with healthy MCTs. So caffeine actually stimulates ketosis in the body. So if you do – I do organic black coffee every morning, grind my beans fresh, put it in the blender, add some grass-fed butter, some coconut oil usually. But I’m also starting to experiment with exogenous ketones, as well, and that can actually help you get to that transition a lot faster I found out. But regardless of what type of fats you choose to use, you do that in the morning and you’re basically doing this intermittent fasting period for two weeks. But when your first meal is during the lunch hour, that first meal you are following a strict ketogenic diet for two weeks. And you’re going to be testing your urine levels almost after a five-day period every day and making sure you get to that clinical range. Once you’re in that clinical range, then we can start reducing that and not really going into continuous ketosis anymore.

We’re now going to go into a daily mild cycling of ketosis. And I say mild cycling because it’s basically just intermittent fasting. And I actually like to narrow my window personally a little bit lower than eight hours if I can. But again, you’re going to be going through 16 hours of not eating or having some black organic coffee with those healthy fats to actually get to a mild ketosis range. And usually that’s about 0.3 mM, and it’s where your body is just able to use some of its energy as ketones. It’s not going to be full on ketone metabolism, but at least you’re switching your metabolism, which I think is very effective. And then also, too, I’ll usually work out in a fasted state right around 11:30, and then right at noon is when I have my first meal of the day. And if I’m just doing this daily IF thing, I actually allow myself to have a banana or some frozen berries in my smoothie, my post-workout shake. So I’m actually adding healthy carbohydrates in this daily regimen. But I do – after I’ve done that full-blown ketosis for that two-week period, now I incorporate a daily intermittent fasting where I do allow carbs, but I do one to two three-day ketogenic full-on ketosis for three days each month.

DAN:
What would you say your carb intake is on an average day?

DR. MIKE:
On an average day right now probably around 100 g.

DAN:
That’s through healthy carbs I take it?

DR. MIKE:
Absolutely, yeah. It’s weird; when you’re actually in ketosis and you’re going full-on ketogenic diet it’s weird, but you really start to crave fruits. You crave things like, oh my gosh, I’m craving quinoa right now. Like oh shoot. That – it’s just – I just don’t think that – you know, these things are called prebiotic foods, bananas, apples, root vegetables that you can’t have on a ketogenic diet. I don’t necessarily believe that that’s healthy to go without those long-term. So I think a cycling is very beneficial, and just as a side note, if you look at our ancestors, if you look at the hunter gatherers, they would go multiple days without eating. And in fact, after multiple days without eating they would then go hunting on an empty stomach without food from fasting, and their mental focus is huge. They were able to focus very, very much. They were able to concentrate on hunting their game because they’re in ketosis. But then once they would get the animals, once they would get and gather food, then they would eat. Then they would go out of ketosis. So our ancestors cycled as well. They didn’t do continuous ketosis. And so I think when we have these different energy systems available in our body they are meant to be used, all of them. [I don’t 0:28:11.2] think there’s a one-size-fits-all.

DAN:
I think they have a seasonal cycling, too, where the fruits were in season kind of unlike what we have now where we have manufactured fruit in season.

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, exactly, from China.

DAN:
Which has very bright colors, by the way.

DR. MIKE:
I think seasonal fruit, fruit is very, very important. And again, those are nourishing your gut bacteria. And as you guys know, 80 to 90% of your immune system comes from those beneficial gut flora deep in your intestines. So if you’re not feeding those and you’re not maintaining a good healthy gut, well guess what; that’s your immune system going in the tank. So then I think that continuous ketosis could be negatively affecting your body. So that’s what I think this cycling and then going through more three-day periods a couple times a month is really like the best answer that I’ve found so far.

DAN:
That’s very interesting. I think I will try that because I’ve been ketogenic for quite a while now, maybe a couple months straight. I did eat some sushi once, which is funny because people think that they’re in a higher level of ketosis than they actually are because at least with me I eat some carbs, and it will kick me right out. But I like that idea of the cycling. It makes sense from a health standpoint definitely.

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, and it actually makes you – I think it increases your quality of life because I don’t think it’s necessary to devoid yourself of fruit and even vegetables. I mean pretty much on a ketogenic diet you’re allowed to have greens, but root vegetables are a no-no. That will kick you out. And so I just think some of that stuff is a little too strict, doing it continuously. But also, too, if you do a continuous ketogenic diet chances are your insulin can get to such low levels that your liver will actually start to break down protein stores. Ketones, by nature, have a protein-sparing effect. They have an anti-catabolic protein sparing effect. But if your insulin actually goes way too low from a long, long term ketogenic diet, then your body will actually then have to be forced to go after its protein stores to break down and increase blood sugar. We still have to have some insulin. But the problem is most people out there are such insulin resistant and have so much that that never seems like a feasible problem they could ever have. But if we go years on end being in ketosis I think that could be problematic.

DAN:
So what are your go-to carbs?

DR. MIKE:
With my first shake of the day when I break my fast I add a ton of healthy fat, but I do – again, I do frozen green banana, and I do a mixed organic berries. So I try to get all colors of the berries, and I do more green bananas, not like super green where you can’t peel it, but more green because it has more resistant starch compared to more simple sugars, simple fructose. So the sugar content actually changes in a banana as it gets more yellow and brown. So I do more of the green to avoid that massive sugar spike. But I do things just like fruits. And then my go-to – and I do things like root vegetables. And I’ll eat quinoa. But pretty much I’m not a big carb eater either. I’m fairly a low-carb just normally, but it’s not low enough where I would be considered ketogenic.

Reversing Disease and Regaining Health

DAN:
I want to go back to your patients real quick. So when you have them come into your clinic and then say two, three months later after you have adjusted their nutrition and put them into a fitness routine, what type of health improvements do you see?

DR. MIKE:
Well, people on medications, you’re talking getting rid of almost every single medication. Now legally we can’t say get off them, but what we’re going to say is we’re going to teach people how to take, for example, blood pressure properly. It’s always comical to me when someone’s like I checked my blood pressure this morning, and it was really high. And I would say oh wow. I’m like well I know you have a dog. What was your dog’s blood pressure this morning? And they’re like what do you mean? I’m not going to check my dog’s blood pressure. I’m like wait a minute. So you don’t check your dog’s blood pressure. We are an animal species. What you’re saying is that your dog is intelligent enough to regulate its own blood pressure, but you, a human being, has to be checked multiple times a day to check your blood pressure? To me that makes no sense. Our bodies can actually regulate itself. So when we can do these comparative analogies to different animals people are like oh yeah, that makes sense. But then again, we don’t apply that to just normal, basic common sense with our human body.

But we get people off blood pressure drugs and everything because we teach them how to take it properly. You’ve got to deep breathe for at least 10 minutes before you do your blood pressure. A lot of times when a doctor walks in they get that white coat syndrome. Patients get nervous. They take their blood pressure, and it’s high. But that’s not really a natural blood pressure for them. So you’ve got to learn how to take it right. And a lot of times when doctors are only spending a couple moments with a patient-doctor interaction time, it becomes problematic. And a lot of these tests are actually inaccurate, if you will, and they’re getting falsely put on medications. And it goes on from there. But I just think that getting them off that medication in the first place really helps them get healthy, and that’s one of the first things we do. We do something called drug searches with each patient, and we kind of go over a plan of attack on how they can work with their prescribing doctor to get off the drugs.

DAN:
That is so funny that you talked about blood pressure because just today – my blood pressure is high in the morning. I’m a CEO of a hospital, so it’s a little stressful at times. So I bought a little monitor, and in the instructions it said here is what you need to do. No caffeine for an hour. You need to sit here for 10 minutes. And so I kind of followed that, and now it’s normal. But the last two – I’ve been to a dentist, and I’ve been to a doctor, and it’s been high because I probably drank caffeine and then – but it would be very easy for that doctor to put me on high blood pressure medicine –

DR. MIKE:
Oh, super easy.

DAN:
– because of that one reading. That’s very timely that you said that. That confirmed my suspicions. So besides the medications, as they lose weight that has to have very positive effects on their body.

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, and we’re also literally reversing degenerative processes in their body. It’s kind of funny to me that when you go with any type of like ailment the last thing someone’s going to do, a doctor’s going to do is take an x-ray of the spine. And why the spine? Because you have something called the brain stem and spinal cord that passes through there, and not to mention that’s the only system that’s completely encased by bone in the body is the nervous system, brain by the skull and the spinal column by the actual spine. So you actually – it’s a very important system, and we’ve got to take care of it. So if it’s degenerative beyond belief, obviously that person is not healthy. Even if they look good outside, well the inside is telling you a different story, and the inside is really what counts. And so you are literally reducing degenerative changes in the body. We’re reversing a lot of their arthritic conditions by getting them on a healthy diet, via specific spinal adjustments. So their quality of life, their energy levels, I mean we literally give them their life back in every single way possible.

DAN:
Do your patients understand the chronic inflammation and how bad that is for them, or do most of them have not even heard about that?

DR. MIKE:
They do. And for one thing, most of our patients – or a lot of them either watch our talks through YouTube, and so they’re watching our talks regularly, which is what brought them in the first place. So they are constantly getting that message out on a daily basis even.

DAN:
We’re running out of time, but I do want you to talk about what are your tips to somebody who is experiencing these type of issues, isn’t sure what to do next, or somebody that just wants to have a healthier lifestyle?

Tips for a Healthier Lifestyle

DR. MIKE:
The first thing I would do is just probably get on an intermittent fasting regimen. I think it’s that important, and it’s that easy to incorporate. The transition period of not eating, or that little shock in the morning without having a meal right away, that’s a very short-lived transition in my experience and with other people’s experience. So I think it’s one of the easiest things to incorporate. Get out, get movement and also, too, like getting sunlight. Just simple things like that, getting back to nature, walking barefoot, getting that grounding effect, getting that massive increase in negative ions throughout the body to actually clean the blood, cause an anti-inflammatory response. The strongest antioxidant in the world is the Earth’s surface, and we absorb the negative ions if we’re actually barefoot contact. So just kind of getting back to the basics, really, is the first thing I recommend.

After that I do recommend people, if they want to have optimal health and longevity, I would recommend seeking a corrective chiropractor to see where they’re at physically, especially the shape of their spine. If you have massive amounts of degeneration, obviously that’s going to affect nerve flow and nervous system functioning and actually promotes a sympathetic-dominant state. If you’re in that chronic stressful physiology – I mean as you know you’re a CEO of a hospital – the same things happen. You start to deliver stress hormones throughout the entire body. But in order for your body to do that it has to increase its blood pressure to get those stress hormones to every single part of the body rapidly.

Now one of those blood vessels that is going to constrict and increase blood pressure is the blood vessels to the brain. If you take a blood pressure lowering drug, it’s going to lower blood to the brain, which is why the number one symptom of blood pressure drugs is dizziness and mental fog. It’s like no wonder because you’re actually literally diminishing blood flow to the brain. So just getting back to the basics, getting things – simplifying things, using more common sense in health I think is the biggest thing.

How to Choose a Chiropractor

DAN:
How do you find a chiropractor that is skilled, or how do you know their level of quality?

DR. MIKE:
I think the biggest thing is looking for a doctor who has objective analysis and not just goes by symptom relief as their sole purpose. As you know, you may see a lot of people in the hospital who may not have current pain, but you know they are completely unhealthy. And vice versa. You may see people who look great on the outside but who are just in chronic pain. So pain is not a very good indicator of your health. And then again you can say what’s the number one killer in the US? Heart disease. The number one symptom of that is usually a heart attack. How did they feel the day before? They felt fine. So even though their heart has been kind of getting sick for a 10-, 20-year period, you don’t necessarily feel your heart getting sick until boom you have that heart attack and it’s too late. Health is not how you feel. It’s really how you’re functioning. And so that’s the biggest thing.

DAN:
Those are great tips. What if somebody wants to get a hold of you? I know you have great YouTube videos on all different types of topics. Tell us a little bit about your practice and your social media presence.

Connect with Dr. Mike

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, I mean I would encourage you guys to check out my YouTube channel. YouTube.com/drmichaelvandc. I basically upload these on a monthly basis, and they’re really just like scientific lectures with peer-reviewed references on things that are really relevant in today’s society. I’m really passionate about different types of diet things I’ve learned, supplements, exercise regimens, high intensity interval training, resistance training techniques, just everything to maximize human performance is kind of what I’m passionate about. So you’re going to find a lot of those there. It’s all for free. I encourage you to check out that YouTube channel. And Facebook, I update regularly. Just look up Dr. Michael VanDerschelden on Facebook. Like that page to follow me through there.
And then I’d also encourage you guys to check out The Scientific Approach to Intermittent Fasting, the book I did. And over 102 references, peer-reviewed articles I have referenced in that book. So fasting is not a myth. This is literally – there is legit science on that. And why nutritionists still don’t advocate doing this instead of the five small meals throughout the day is beyond belief. But you’ve got to remember that dieting is a multibillion dollar industry. So when people fail on diets, well they go back to that same dieting company or agency. And so it is a business. So you’ve got to realize what you’re kind of getting yourself into.

DAN:
Where can we find your book?

DR. MIKE:
The easiest one is just Amazon.com. You can type in “intermittent fasting.” The easier way is to just type in my name, and the book will come right up. The Scientific Approach to Intermittent Fasting.

DAN:
Okay, and we’ll put the link in our show notes. And then what about your website?

DR. MIKE:
The website is actually under works now. So it is going to be drmichaelvan.com, d-r-m-i-c-h-a-e-l-v-a-n .com, but it’s under kind of some repair right now, so it’s going to be getting up in a few months.

DAN:
Awesome. Anything else you want to share before we close the interview?

DR. MIKE:
Really just give intermittent fasting a try because at least we’ll still be able to get some type of ketone metabolism going on in the body, and you’re already going to see the benefits so quickly just from intermittent fasting and see how easy it is. And you’re going to see drastic body composition changes. And I think once you do that, which is very easy, then that will stimulate people’s interest in then maybe going a step further and then going into more full-on ketogenic mode and the true cycling that I recommend that I just talked about. So I think once you start there and see the benefits, kind of benefits even spark more motivation. Then they’re going to go on each step beyond there when they can see those benefits affecting them. So just start with the intermittent fasting and then slowly work your way up to more ketone metabolism.

DAN:
Yeah, that’s awesome. And last question. What if they want to work directly with you?

DR. MIKE:
Unfortunately, you know, to come see us at our practice we have about a 6- to 7-month waiting list, which is kind of insane.

DAN:
Yeah, that’s awesome.

DR. MIKE:
So the only time I can really get someone in, if someone calls at the right moment and we have some random cancellation going on, they can kind of fill that spot right away. But other than that they can, if they know that’s something that they want to do and get checked out, they can call and make an appointment and get that in there right now. Our clinic name, Bergman Family Chiropractic. You can look up online, in Huntington Beach. Give them a call. But also, too, connecting with me on Facebook and Skype – and I think that’s how you found me, as well, asking me I think it was maybe Facebook.

DAN:
Well actually YouTube.

DR. MIKE:
YouTube, yeah, it was one of those messengers or something. But I try to answer that as much as I can. I answer the YouTube more than the Facebook, but I’m trying to be more diligent with that, but just with the busy schedule at the practice it’s hard for me to do that. But just finding me through there, and we can set things up. I do Skype consultations for people who have more interesting cases or more – who need more than like the couple sentence answers on YouTube we’ll do a Skype consultation so they can look me up there as well.

DAN:
That’s not bad. I mean it takes six months to get into a family practice doctor now.

DR. MIKE:
That’s true. That’s true. Absolutely.

DAN:
Well Dr. Mike thank you so much. This has been a very interesting interview, and I know people are going to learn a lot. I concur. I think people should try intermittent fasting, and we will link it to your book because I’m sure some people are interested in reading it. And I will probably go purchase it as well.

DR. MIKE:
Yeah, I know you just had Dr. Fung on your podcast, and I read his book. His book is fantastic. So he was a big inspiration in my whole journey as well. I really like what you’re doing with the podcast, and I think it’s great.

DAN:
Well thank you, and keep doing everything you’re doing. And enjoy that California weather.
DR. MIKE:
I will man. You take care. Have a great day.

DAN:
All right. Thank you.

7 Comments

  1. Michelle

    Is this working for anyone?

    • Nanette

      YES!!

    • Dan Perryman

      yes, it is working for pretty much everyone who does it.

    • Marty

      Yes I’ve lost 42 pounds in 2.5 months

  2. J Lee

    I want to know your input on sugar substitutes and the Keto lifestyle.

  3. KB

    is there a book to get for this keto diet that you wrote or recommend?

  4. Pat leblanc

    What about cooked dry beans? Pinto etc