Dr. Stephen Phinney on the Safety and Benefits of a Ketogenic Diet (Part 2)

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Stephen Phinney, MD, Ph.D, explains the benefits of a ketogenic diet and the research on the safety of this dietary approach.

Watch part 1 here:
Watch part 3 here:

Stephen Phinney is the Chief Medical Officer and Co-Founder of Virta Health, the first clinically-proven treatment to safely and sustainably reverse type 2 diabetes without medications or surgery.

As a physician-scientist with 40 years of experience divided between academic internal medicine and industry, Dr. Phinney has studied nutritional biochemistry with a long-term focus on low carbohydrate research and its benefits for physical performance and insulin sensitivity.

A Professor of Medicine Emeritus at University of California, Davis, Dr. Phinney is an internationally recognized expert on obesity, carbohydrate-restricted and ketogenic diets, diet and performance, and essential fatty acid metabolism.

Dr. Phinney has designed, completed, and published data from more than 20 clinical protocols involving diets, exercise, oxidative stress, and inflammation. His extensive experience in the design of clinical nutrition trials in both academic and industrial settings has led to more than 87 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters on clinical nutrition and biochemistry. He is the author of four books, including The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living and The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance, two foundational books on low carb nutrition science and nutritional ketosis that he co-authored with Jeff Volek, Ph.D, RD.

Dr. Phinney received his medical degree from Stanford University, holds a Doctorate in nutritional biochemistry and metabolism from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and completed post-doctoral research at Harvard University.



  1. No docs in the Greater Philadelphia area that are educated in this. One doc I went to who is listed as keto wanted to add meds not take them away. Olympia I think the once a week shot is called. Even though I am pre-diabetic not diabetic.

  2. I`m just amazed that someting like THIS has only 200k views. Whereas some videoclip of a girl dancing in a bikini top has over 5 million….well….on secon thought…..any pure blooded male should be enticed by some display of female exposure. But, you get my point…this info should be spread more.

  3. It seems that for some categories of people, a ketogenic diet is good. But why should an average healthy person,who can be healthy, fit,muscular and energetic with physical exercise and eat in moderation from all categories of foods,restrict themselves to eating fats which stink and are disgusting just to look at,let alone eat them. Fruits smell and taste delicious.

  4. I have a long history of overeating. I have been following a ketogencic diet for over two years and I have lost almost 100lbs but I have had to severly resstrict my caloric intake to achieve that. I have got used to the reduced volume of food and the hunger is no where near as bad as when I first started but I still do not feel entirely satiated when I eat. How do I eat to satiety without retricting my calories or overeating?

  5. I'm surprised that there's not at least a million views on this guy's videos. This is so informative and much more accurate as well as credible than a bunch of other videos I saw. Excellent Doctor. A rarity of his kind. I want to know what this well formed Ketogenic Diet is so I can jump on it immediately. SIGHhHhh Hopefully that secret is in some of his videos.

  6. I started keto mid November-2019–have lost 40 lbs (now mid March 2020), but more importantly my blood glucose A1c went down from 7.7 to 5.3. I went off the metformin when I started keto— my doctor has been very supportive.

  7. I discovered Keto about 6 months ago through a work colleague. In my younger adult years I was a string bean, but about 7 years ago started putting on weight to the point my trousers got too small around my waist. A couple years went by, until my regular doctor associate ordered a blood test overdue, and diagnosed hypothyroidism. So I take levothyroxine, which has brought my weight under control stabilising at 92 kgs. Not my "normal weight". I tried different diets, but weight stayed the same. No fasting. In Nov last year I went on to a "lazy" keto diet, which allowed to me to eat meat, and other proteins, and cutting out as much carbs as possible. No potatoes, no rice, no root veges. My weight has come down to 84.5kgs today. Mr target is 82.5kgs. Every product I buy I look at the carbs, and average 10-13gms per serving size. Not worried about calories. I'm encountering the odd cramp just recently, but need to make up some deficiencies to alleviate this, Magnesium etc. Still physically active teaching Karate twice a weak, still working, and active IN my mid 60s now. My blood pressure has also come down big time to a more normal rate.

  8. Finally, someone who actually knows the science! So tired of one-size-fits-all jocks writing dietary advice! Thanks for presenting the dangers of ketosis for diabetics and those with kidney insufficiency, et cetera. So tired of explaining to my kids that their Paleo or all- meat diet might be survivable for them in their 20s, but isn't necessarily safe or appropriate for their 60 – something parents!

  9. Isn't ketogenic diet actually increase ldl level in the blood, instead of decrease? There are lots of videos on YouTube clarifying that. High ldl level in ketogenic diet is actually a good thing

  10. Keto is an unnatural and dangerous thus stupid diet. Just look up Glycogen storage disease type 0 or cardiac lipotoxicity. You keto charlatans should be locked up for destroying people's health.

  11. 1. At minute 1:32. The labels on the scatter graph appear to be reversed. The blue filled circles should be LCD. No?
    2. At minute 7:10. The graph is labeled "Fat Oxidation vs. Exercise intensity" but the vertical axis shows fat oxidation RATE and the horizontal axis shows DURATION, not intensity.

  12. Hi Dr. Stephen Phinney
    Thank you so much for your dedicated research and published findings. I am a 4th year medical student and I've followed a ketogenic diet and loved all the benefits, especially the mental clarity.
    I am hoping you can help shed some light on research on potential costs and benefits for women who are either pregnant or breast feeding while following a ketogenic diet.

  13. I have gone to a doctor who has me on multiple drugs for diabetes ( metformin and glimepiride), for high triglycerides ( Fenofibrate ) ,for low thyroid ( Levothyroxine) and on a blood pressure drug ( Amlodipine ) . I stopped taking statins and have a substitute drug for the Metformin that I had been taking. My blood chemistry done by a lab revealed a cholesterol level of 196, blood sugar of 256, and an A1C level of 8.3. I have an appointment with my doctor this Friday and plan to tell him about my intermittent fasting and plans to go on a Ketogenic diet ( which I have actually started about 2 weeks ago ) and my intent to get off of several of these drugs because of side effects. My investigation indicates that statins are only good for a class of patients that have had cardiac issues and I have none. I am convinced that I should be on far fewer drugs and by being on a Ketogenic diet I will see some positive changes without drugs

  14. At the end of the day the human body isn’t designed to eat refined carbs and sugar, which is essentially the issue with the typical diet of many in today’s world. This combined with the sedentary lifestyle is the ticking time bomb about to explode.

  15. Can pregnancy cause a woman to become insulin resistant? Every since I gave birth, almost 9 years ago (I was 37), I've had the hardest time controlling my weight; even with my prior eating habits and strenuous exercise. The only time I do lose weight with very little effort is when I go keto. I'm trying it again today, and I plan on staying on it long term.

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