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Catching up with the 3 Keto Dudes

Published: 8/3/2020
63 minutes

Richard, Carrie, and Carl catch up. Richard got his degree, Carrie got a house guest, and Carl got Coronavirus. He's better now. Oh, and we talk about Ketofest online!


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About 2 Keto Dudes

2 Keto Dudes was started by Carl Franklin and Richard Morris in February, 2016, just after Carl had gone keto to control his Type 2 Diabetes and obesity. In January, 2019 Richard stepped away from the microphone to concentrate on his studies. He went back to school in his 50s for a Biochemistry degree. He still comes on the show now and then, but Carl's new co-host as of 2019 is Carrie Brown. Here are their stories.

Carl Franklin

Carl Franklin (born 1967) has been heavy almost his entire life, with brief periods of weight loss and good health. After he quit smoking in 1991 he gained nearly 70 pounds, which wouldn't begin to come off until years later when he discovered the Atkins diet.

Atkins proved to be hard to stick to. In hindsight, it's because you slowly bring carbs back into your diet, and it's too easy to skip the fat necessary to stay in
nutritional ketosis, instead opting for 'healthy' foods like whole grain bread and fruits.

After a divorce in 2008, Carl went back to a ketogenic diet and lost 60 pounds. He went from 379 to 319 where he hit a wall. After being remarried, the weight slowly came back on until he was over 350.

His sugars had always been in control, though, because he occasionally would eat low carb for 4 or 5 days. That was enough to keep it just low enough so the doctors wouldn't be alarmed. Pressure from friends and family to watch out for the 'dangers of low-carb dieting' always scared him away from fully committing.

In 2014 he convinced his doctor to let him try a new weight-loss drug, QSymia, which suppresses appetite. It worked at first. He lost about 20 pounds, but found his appetite coming back. The dose had to be upped until he was taking what he thought was way too much. By the time he was at the third level of dosage increase his appetite was back to normal, and the weight came back on with a vengence. Of course, he was eating the FDA food pyramid, which didn't help his hunger. He went off QSymia, and gained even more weight.

In June, 2015 Carl was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. His doctor knew about the benefits of low-carb diets, and encouraged him. In 2015 Carl learned that a close friend had colon cancer and went under the knife. This friend had gone ketogenic to keep his cancer in check, and it was working. Richard Morris was a mutual friend as well, and Carl had read about his success with keto on the social networks.

That was it. He was 366 pounds. He knew low-carb was the only thing that worked for him. It was time. He started low-carb again in January, 2016, and this time did the research that convinced him to go full-blown ketogenic. His doctor gave him the green light, and he began keto in earnest on February 1st, 2016.

When Carl started 2 Keto Dudes with Richard Morris, he had already lost 24 pounds and was on his way to recovery. After only 2 and a half months of keto eating, with no drugs and no exercise, he had lost a total of 35 pounds (11 on keto), and his HBA1C (a three-month average of blood sugar) went from 7.4 (diabetic) to 6.1 (pre-diabetic). In July, 2016, Carl was 297 (70 pounds lighter), and his A1C was 5.9 (non-diabetic). By December he was 286 (80 pounds lighter). 2 Keto Dudes is the story of Carl and Richard as they navigate the ketogenic lifestyle. And, starting with episode #150 in January, 2019, Carrie Brown replaces Richard as co-host, and brings her amazing story.

Carrie Brown

Carrie Brown is a trained pastry chef who struggled all her life with Bipolar 2 and depression. She found her way to the ketogenic way of eating by doing research. Using a combination of keto and supplementation she has rid herself of all medications for and symptoms of Bipolar 2 and depression. She now has dedicated her life to showing people that keto food is not only healthy, but it can be the BEST kind of food there is. Carrie has authored many cookbooks and blogs at

Here’s a few cliff-notes from her blog: British American living in Connecticut, having been a Seattle resident for 17 years. Loves eating. Has an accent like crack. Goes on {very} long, crazy road-trips regularly. Lives with a couple of large cameras, a pile of cats (Zebedee, Daisy, and Mr. McHenry. RIP Chiko, Dougal, Florence, and Penelope), and a ridiculous amount of cocoa powder. Has a propensity for driving on anything that even vaguely resembles a dirt road – especially if it is not marked on a map. Thinks leeks are the finest vegetable on earth. Adores daffodils. Dreams about eating expeditions in Paris & Bruges. Couldn’t do a push-up if her life depended on it. Driving solo for 14 hours straight is pretty much nirvana-on-wheels to her. Wears a lot of black & white…that’s how her brain works too. Likes to get up at 4 am to photograph the sunrise and be first in line for breakfast. Believes that chia seeds are proof that God exists. Goes completely gaga over the scent of roses. Is known for her disarming honesty and openness: She says it how it is. Especially about herself. Just to be clear though, it’s not always rainbows and unicorns.

Richard Morris

It started in 2003 in Las Vegas when Richard (born 1965) gave up smoking under his doctors' supervision (using drugs). He compensated by eating just enough more to put on about 20lbs.

Doctors told Richard his triglycerides were getting high and so he should diet. He started drinking SlimFast nutritionally complete meal replacements. At his next blood test he found out he was pre-diabetic and was referred to an internist who got him on metformin and statins.

Then, his glycemic control worsened. So, they upped the drugs. His blood pressure started marching north, so he reduced all salt in his diet.

Shortly after, Richard met the Atkins low carb high protein diet. That was 2005, the height of the first low carb diet craze when supermarkets were switching from selling bread to low carb wraps, and fast food joints were doing low carb breakfast bowls.

After 3 months of Atkins, Richard's blood glucose was normal, his lipids were normal, and his blood pressure had normalized.

He figured he was cured! He took a victory lap and moved to Australia, retiring from software development to concentrate on getting his health back. He'd do it by exercising and eating clean - which meant learning to cook, and to grow food, and to do things like hand make cheese.

Fast forward 10 years. Richard had a personal trainer working him ragged for 3 x 30 minutes every week. He was cycling 100km a week, and his diet had become full of things like hand made pastas, pizzas with homemade mozzarella, lot's of meals with whole grains or pulses, all the good stuff that he had learned to cook. Pretty good retirement, right?

But Richard had put on a lot of weight, almost as much as he had when he was sick in Vegas. To make matters worse, he had developed a bad toe infection that started as an ingrown toenail and wouldn't go away. Eventually it was so bad that he took it to the ER, and they told him it was so badly infected that he may have to lose it, and by the way did he know he was a full on type 2 diabetic?

Defeated, he went back onto diabetes drugs (Metformin, Statins, BP meds), and saved the toe, but he slowly got sicker and sicker. Then they wanted to put him on a new drug called Januvia. After doing some research he found out that in a UCLA study of cadavers that had taken Januvia there was found a remarkable incident of pancreatic duct tumors.

The spectre of cancer was enough. After going through the stages of grief Richard made them a deal. If he could not fix this in three months he'd take the damn cancer pills.

Rather than getting depressed and accepting the diagnosis he studied everything he could about nutritional ketosis, which is the new hard core version of the low carb diet that is also lowish protein and as much fat as you can eat. He obsessed.

After 5 months Richard was no longer diabetic by any measure known to modern pathology. He went from having a disease that is, according to medicine, only ever progressive and not curable - to being asymptomatic.

His HbA1c was 5.2%. Diabetic ranges start over 7.5%. Normal is 5.0% to 6.5%. Richard's level at 5.2% is better than many people who are very insulin sensitive. He now exercises less, and he's healthier than ever. It's a keto miracle.

In February, 2016 Carl approached him about doing 2 Keto Dudes to provide information, links to the studies supporting the ketogenic diet, and of course recipes. Like Carl, Richard is a foodie. They both enjoy cooking, now more than ever.


Our bodies run on two primary fuels: glucose and fatty acids.

It's kind of like we have a car with an engine that can run on either gasoline or diesel. We fuel up by eating food. If we eat food containing sugars and starches (carbohydrates) we convert those quickly into glucose and we run as glucose burners. All the cells in our bodies can turn this glucose into energy. This is why it's sometimes called our primary fuel. If we eat more glucose than we need for immediate exercise requirements, our livers sweep up the extra glucose and turn it into saturated fat, and sends this (and any fat we have eaten) off to our fat cells to be stored for lean times.

If we don't eat any carbs and instead eat fat (and moderate protein) most of our cells can easily burn the fatty acids for energy. It could be the fat in our food but it could also be fat that we have stored in case food is ever scarce. This state is called
nutritional ketosis. We often go into ketosis during sleep (if we haven't eaten a late dinner), and of course anyone doing a fast is running their fat burning engine.

Some cells in the body (and the most metabolically active organ - the brain) can't burn fatty acids, but your brain can use ketones. These are small water soluble molecules that you make as a by product of metabolising fats.

Luckily your liver makes glucose even when you don't eat any carbohydrates, and by a quirk of fate, when it is making glucose for your brain it is also pumping out a lot of ketones.

We evolved to be predominantly fat burners for 11 months of the year. At the end of summer (when ripe fruit is available) we became predominantly glucose burners. We are good at adapting from one mode to the next, although it can take a few weeks for the machinery of fat burning to spin up to full efficiency and put our glucose burning into idle. Once you are adapted to burning fat (keto-adaptation) and you start eating carbohydrates again, in a few weeks your glucose burning metabolism will be back up at full speed.

In our modern world, however, we are burning glucose all year round, 6 meals a day. Our bodies have forgotten how to burn fat. We just store it and never get a chance to burn it. Some of us have become so metabolically deranged working our glucose metabolism 24/7 365 days a year that our mechanism for safely metabolising glucose has become broken - and that is how we got type 2 diabetes.

The Ketogenic diet addresses this by forcing your metabolism to predominantly burn fat, restricting your dietary carbohydrates, and relying on your liver to make all the glucose and ketones your brain needs. Most of the rest of your body burns fatty acids directly for energy.

When you give your body fat, it becomes good at burning fat! When you give your body glucose, it becomes good at storing fat!

But what about the studies that show correlation between fat intake and heart disease? If you look carefully, study after study shows that increasing fat intake while eating more than 50 grams of carbohydrates a day will indeed increase heart disease and all that goes with it. These studies fail to remove the carbohydrates!

Some people are good at switching from one mode to the next. Type 2 diabetics, however, have a broken metabolism for dealing with glucose, so when we eat carbohydrates we get progressively worse glucose control and consequently get sicker over decades. We can, however, hack our body into being full time fat burners. This hack not only allows us to maintain safe glucose levels (, with less medication (, but improves many of our biomarkers of disease.

If we additionally choose to use this hack to also lose weight it preserves more of our our resting energy expenditure ( and over time if we have intervened early enough can allow us to reverse the progression of type 2 diabetes (

This dietary strategy is still something that Diabetes Associations around the world are only just now looking at, and Dietetic associations are firmly opposed to, as it is not a modest tweak of their established food pyramid, but a complete upending of it. There are political issues as well. The USDA has a conflict of interest when it comes to dietary guidelines. That said, the ketogenic diet is quickly becoming the first approach in diabetes management among progressive medical specialists (

The bottom line for us is that following the low fat model for the past 40 years has made us fatter and sicker. In 2012 some 52% of US adults - according to the projections in this study ( - were either diagnosed with type 2 diabetes (9.1%), or undiagnosed type 2 diabetics (5.2%), or they had a condition called prediabetes, meaning they were metabolically deranged but not quite at diabetic levels (38%). So, it is no longer just some of us. Most of us are in trouble.

That is why we're 2 keto dudes, and why we're doing this podcast.

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2 Keto Dudes Theme Song

Carl Franklin wrote and recorded the theme song. It's called Groove or Get Out of the Way by Franklin Brothers Band. It features jazz and jam band legend
John Scofield on guitar. Watch the YouTube video here. For more information about Carl's band check out the Franklin Brothers Band Page.