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Episode 7: Carnivore vs. Vegan, Exogenous Ketones, and MetFlex Performance with Dr. Ryan Lowery

podcast Mar 29, 2020

Dr. Ryan Lowery (@ryanplowery), (


Dr. Ryan P. Lowery who is the CEO of and President of the Applied Science and Performance Institute. He has published over 150 papers, abstracts, and book chapters on human performance and sports nutrition and is heavily focused on the impact of ketogenic diets.

Ryan has received the Exercise Science Scholar of the Year Award, NSCA Award for Outstanding Presentation of the year award, and the National AAHPERD Exercise Science Major of the Year Award. Ryan recently co-authored the book The Ketogenic Bible alongside his partner Dr. Jacob Wilson which focuses on the science and practical application behind the ketogenic diet, exogenous ketones, and all of their potential applications.

GIVEAWAY for today’s episode is brought to you by SuperCoffee

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  • Subscribe to the MetFlex & Chill podcast
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In this episode we talk about Carnivore vs. Vegan experiments, building muscle on keto, low carb/keto and CrossFit, metabolic flexibility, exogenous ketones, and ayahuasca.

“If your goal is to build muscle, you don't need to, nor should you, be on a therapeutic ketogenic diet where your eating 90% fat. That's not supportive of your goal which is to build muscle and I think that's where it comes down to context.” Dr. Ryan Lowery

Episode Top Takeaways:

  • Be willing to test theories by experimenting and testing for yourself.
  • Keto vs. veganism, carnivore, and Atkins diets.
  • Why a strict keto diet may not be the best if your goal is to build muscle or compete in sports like CrossFit..and what you should focus on instead.
  • The ability to utilize metabolic flexibility for health, sport, and lifestyle.
  • The truth about exogenous ketones.

Show Notes:

  • [0:34] Ryan and Rachel met at the NSCA national conference in 2016
  • [3:00] Ryan was in school for Physical Therapy, but changed trajectory when he found research on  the ketogenic diet in 2011 through Dr. Jeff Volek
  • [4:00] Dr. Volek examines ketogenic diet for endurance athletes
  • [4:10] Ryan did the first study on resistance athletes, ketogenic diet, and body composition
  • [4:45] Ryan founded the Applied Science Performance Institute (ASPI)
  • [6:00] Ryan talks about his experience with the Carnivore diet, incorporating lots of organ meat, salt, and ghee to achieve maximum results
  • [8:40] An all meat diet does not result in muscle loss, adverse effects on blood, or unhealthy microbiome
  • [11:35] Ryan’s experiment going vegan for one month led to significant lean muscle loss
  • [15:30] Ryan’s study on building muscle on the keto diet
  • [17:28] “The question is, do you need to be 100% keto, all the time, 24/7, 365? Is that ideal for building muscle? … I don’t necessarily think that is the case.”
  • [19:30] Keto is different from Atkins diet in that it achieves a metabolic state of ketosis
  • [22:35] Dual fuel advantages for many different types of athletes
  • [23:56] “Even some of these elite CrossFit athletes, regardless of their diet, they're likely inducing ketosis through exercise by how many calories they're burning in general.”
  • [26:20] Ryan’s research on traumatic head injuries suggests difficulty in implementing keto
  • [29:20] Beware of “miracle pill” Exogenous ketones, which are ineffective
  • [32:25] Esters are a longer chain liquid form of ketone, they are effective but “... the taste is brutal… like gin from great-great-great grandfather.” Salts are a good alternative.
  • [36:00] For Ryan’s experience with ayahuasca go to his Youtube channel 
  • [40:00] Ryan’s advice for young entrepreneurs: “Find something that sets your soul on fire… then the key is aligning yourself with like-minded people.”
  • [46:40] Ryan recommends keeping a daily gratitude journal to stay grounded.

Listen to the full episode HERE. 


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Rachel Gregory (@rachelgregory.cns) is a Board-Certified Nutrition Specialist, Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and Author of the best-selling book, 21-Day Ketogenic Diet Weight Loss Challenge. She received her Master’s Degree in Nutrition & Exercise Physiology from James Madison University and Bachelor’s Degree in Sports Medicine from the University of Miami.

Rachel helps her clients transform their lives by starting with the physical (body), realizing the power of the mental (mindset), and ultimately gaining massive confidence that bleeds into every aspect of their lives (family, relationships, work, etc.).


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