Remembering Kevin Moore

The LLVLC Show (Episode 639): Encore Week 2013 – Dr. John Briffa


In Episode 639 of “The Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb Show with Jimmy Moore,” we’re pleased to welcome back a British physician and low-carb health advocate named Dr. John Briffa who is the final returning interview guest as one of the best of the best of 2012 for “Encore Week” 2013. We have kicked off the new year with a bang presenting these special interviews with your favorite podcast guests from last year, including a compelling conversation about lipid health with Dr. Thomas Dayspring on Monday, a philosophical debate about the importance of calories for weight loss with Jonathan Bailor on Tuesday, a physician and nutritional advocate for beating multiple sclerosis named Dr. Terry Wahls who is using a low-carb Paleo diet to help MS patients on Wednesday and sports science researcher Professor Timothy Noakes making waves on behalf of low-carb, high-fat diets in his homeland of South Africa. We hope you’ve enjoyed all of these BRAND NEW EPISODES this week and we look forward bringing you even more outstanding podcast interviews in 2013!

Today we saved one of the best interview guests from 2012 for last as we welcome a very pragmatic medical doctor from the UK named Dr. John Briffa. He released a fabulous book last year outlining this philosophy entitled Escape The Diet Trap (coming to Kindle and other e-book readers for American consumers in late January 2013) that encourages people to stop dieting and to start using a healthy dose of common sense when it comes to choices in their lifestyle that will have a profound impact on weight and health. It’s something we heard on full display when he was our guest in Episode 541 back in February 2012 and in his Low-Carb Cruise lecture in May 2012.

Listen in as “John” (what he likes to be called) and I discuss the new projects he is working on for 2013, his recent blog post about the diabetic patient who was told by his doctor to stop doing the low-carb diet that had improved his health, a trip down memory lane of the health journey he has been on encapsulated in his 1000th post and a whole lot more in this one-hour conversation. And be sure to check out any of the amazing “Encore Week” 2013 interviews you might have missed this week. ENJOY!

Listen to Dr. John Briffa during “Encore Week” 2013:

  • It was great meeting him in person on the 2012 Low-Carb Cruise
  • His book has done very well selling in the UK (a bestseller)
  • Several large supermarkets have bought large quantities of it
  • He’s bringing a Kindle/PDF version to the United States this month
  • His recent 1000th post on his personal health journey
  • His post about a low-carb diabetic told by doctor to eat carbs
  • He encourages people to take back control of their own health
  • Don’t listen to too much of what your doctor is saying on diet
  • Low-carb should be the “default diet” for every diabetic
  • Doctors have incorrect beliefs that cloud their judgment
  • There’s a knee-jerk reaction to Atkins, low-carb, etc.
  • Individuals are in a much better place to handle their own health
  • Medical/dietetic profession have been “outsmarted” by the public
  • The basic mistakes I was making on my low-carb nutrition plan
  • My doctor would be shocked by the diet that I’m eating right now
  • A certain degree of self-experimentation is necessary for most
  • Ultimately you are looking for results at the end of the day
  • If someone has improved their health, how can you be negative about it?
  • There’s a movement where people are educating themselves on health
  • The Internet has helped produced this “major shift” in past 10-15 years
  • Not everything is great online, but there good info is out there
  • There are some doctors who LOVE patients who do their own research
  • Younger doctor who are “Internet-savvy” understand this better
  • Many older physicians will hold on to their dogma until they die
  • Perhaps The Most Useful Question A Doctor Can Ask A Patient
  • Patients have not been given permission to vocalize their thoughts
  • If a doctor has an ego, then he’ll never ask that question to a patient
  • All he’s interested in is seeing the patient get well
  • It doesn’t matter if the solution comes from the doctor or the patient
  • Doctors are looking at getting to the diagnosis (not fixing problem)
  • A diagnosis tends to lead to some pharmaceutical answer FIRST
  • Medicine is an industry used to profit certain vested interests
  • There is little interest in helping to cure a patient with a condition
  • Once a diabetic eats low-carb, the “cash cow” goes away
  • This leads to physicians maybe not giving patients the advice needed
  • Management of chronic illness is very poor by a lot of doctors
  • Patients getting better may be “an unappealing thought” to physicians
  • It’s an important message to let patients know health is a journey
  • Lots of things work, but nothing is a bad way (be open to find better)
  • This thought process has always stuck with him to challenge dogma
  • His personal health journey that built things on top of each other
  • The evolution in his thinking regarding the frequency of eating
  • Intermittent fasting has been effective in helping shed weight
  • There’s a strong argument for letting your health evolve
  • Realizing we are individuals with specific health requirements
  • Doctors tend to feel apart from their patients (superiority complex)
  • But he likes to disclose his own health issues to his patients
  • How giving up smoking in 1987 set him on his path to living healthy
  • He felt bad about selling the idea of health and still smoking
  • He didn’t become interested in diet until he became a doctor
  • When he changed his diet, he cut carbs, dairy and later on wheat
  • This produced a significant improvement in his weight and health
  • Turning to a lower-carb Paleo-styled diet will produce results
  • It’s as close to a dietary panacea that he’s ever seen
  • Making sure you get an appropriate amount of water is significant
  • Most people can embrace drinking more water to see how they feel
  • There’s not a huge amount of evidence supporting this yet
  • But you’re not harming yourself by drinking a bit more water
  • The girlfriend who referred to him as “a camel” from not drinking water
  • The “random acts of kindness” that he started doing in 2010
  • Christmas 2009 story that got him started doing things for others
  • He shoots for doing something kind and generous everyday
  • What this has done is change his mindset to be on “permanent alert”
  • When he purchased a meal secretly for a woman, it made him feel good
  • He never had another conversation with cafe owner about it
  • It’s not really about the money but the spirit of the gesture
  • Enriching the lives of others doesn’t take “ambitious” actions
  • Giving others “due consideration” can make such a difference
  • In late 1990s he learned to swim (not a good swimmer growing up)
  • How he learned to do the breast stroke this year
  • At the age of 46, he’s still tinkering with developing himself
  • Some people think that it’s a “downhill journey” as they get older
  • There’s always an opportunity to grow as an individual at any age
  • What’s important about making resolutions is that they’re “sustainable”
  • The key to a large degree is “consistency” in doing these changes
  • Ask yourself, “Do you see yourself living this way in 5 years?”
  • If they hesitate, then it’s probably not going to be sustainable
  • Ask yourself that question after a month or two of Paleo or low-carb
  • If you have to “tough it out” to get through, then it won’t last
  • You have to make things as easy as possible for people to see benefit
  • People think less they eat, more they exercise produces best results
  • January 1, 2013 was my 9-year anniversary of eating low-carb
  • Making low-carb your “new life resolution” and not just New Year’s


    There are four ways you can listen to Episode 639:

    1. Listen at the iTunes page for the podcast:

    2. Listen and comment about the show at the official web site for the podcast:

    3. Download the MP3 file of Episode 639 [57:42m]:

    4. Listen on the Stitcher app–NO DOWNLOADING!

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR FINANCIALLY SUPPORTING THIS PODCAST! Brand new interview guests are being lined up for your listening enjoyment and I can’t wait for you to hear them share about what a healthy lifestyle change looks like! Your continued financial support and faithfulness to listening is essential to keeping this podcast alive and well and we THANK YOU so very much for your support! If these podcast interviews on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from the most provocative and thought-provoking diet, fitness, and health experts have helped you in any way, then won’t you consider helping us out by clicking on the DONATE button below:

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    How did you like what you heard in this brand new “Encore Week” 2013 interview with Dr. John Briffa? Give us your feedback about it in the show notes section of Episode 639. Keep up with what’s happening with Dr. Briffa’s work at DrBriffa.com and we’ll tell you when the Kindle/PDF version of his book Escape The Diet Trap will be available in the United States. Coming up next week, we’ll be back on our regular schedule again with three BIG new interviews to share with you. On Monday, we’ll welcome back an anti-sugar activist named Dr. Robert Lustig who became an online superstar when his 90-minute “Sugar: The Bitter Truth” video lecture went viral now garnering in excess of 3 million views on YouTube. This captured the attention of a book publisher who was interested in having Dr. Lustig write a book about his thoughts on obesity and disease and now it’s available to the public. It’s called Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease and will be one of the most talked-about health books of 2013. We are honored to have him back again for this exclusive podcast interview. Listen to my previous conversations with Dr. Lustig in Episode 378 and Episode 429. Then on Tuesday I’m delighted to share the work of my fellow health podcasters Terry and Suz McDonald from “Your Life: An Owner’s Manual” who are seeking to pass along the many years of experience and knowledge to their listeners. And then on Wednesday, I’m delighted to share about the accomplishments of a ketogenic ultra-marathon runner named Tim Olson who shocked the running world when he won the Western States 100 race fueled by his high-fat, low-carb diet. Some say it’s impossible to be fueled by anything other than carbohydrates–let’s see what Tim has to say about that!

    If you have something to share about what you heard on “The Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb Show,” then drop us an e-mail at our dedicated podcast e-mail address–LLVLCShow@gmail.com. We’d love to hear from you about what you think about the show, interview guest suggestions, show topics, and anything else you want to share! I LOVE hearing from my listeners, so share what’s on your mind. And we’d so appreciate it if you left us a review for the podcast on iTunes–just CLICK HERE and leave us a few sentences about what impact the podcast has made on your life.

    • Anna

      Thank you Jimmy for doing this show with Dr. Briffa. I was really amazed in particular by the random acts of kindness idea as one of the elements of a healthy lifestyle. I have been a proponent of random acts of kindness ever since reading a column in my local newspaper, the Toronto Star. While the column sadly is now defunct, I have stuck with the idea of helping strangers and trying consciously to do good things instead of passively looking on. It was so nice to hear about this on your show, and of course to hear Dr. Briffa talk about his views on health and medicine.

      • LLVLCBlog

        I think the more we focus on these non-diet keys to health, the more we’ll grasp what it take to optimize our lives.