Welcome to primalmeded

I am a final year medical student and I have a confession: I know precious little about health.

I have been taught about the mechanisms of heart attacks. I know how to diagnose one, what medications to prescribe, what complications to expect and how to look after my patient on the cardiac ward. The patient gets better, I discharge them home with a list of medications, a referral to a cardiologist and strong advice to “address lifestyle factors”. This is where things get a bit tricky.
I used to know what to say: avoid saturated fat, exercise up to 150 minutes a week, reduce your cholesterol, avoid salt, eat plenty of whole grains… But somehow “lifestyle modification” remained this vague elusive concept. Doubt made me get off my butt and do my own research.
My partner says that after I read Gary Taubes “Diet Delusion” (“Good Calories Bad Calories” as it is published in the US) I went quiet for a week. I hated the way that book made me question everything I thought I knew. I struggled through it and then promptly read it again. I began ferociously searching for information on nutrition and exercise. I still am.
There are people out there who are much smarter than me. They refuse to accept the nutritional dogma of the last 50-100 years which led us to be the fattest and unhealthiest generation yet. I will endeavour to follow their example and take charge of my medical education.
This blog is to share my ideas with you: my friends, family and anybody else who is tired of the latest gimmick and the newest fad. And to put my money where my mouth is, I promise to share my personal journey to health and fitness. Please do not expect “before and after” bikini shots, it ain’t gonna happen.
Drop me a line if you like what you see, or maybe two lines if you hate it.

9 thoughts on “Welcome to primalmeded

  1. Pingback: Nutrition: more powerful than prescription drugs | Julianne's Paleo & Zone Nutrition Blog

  2. Hi Anastasia

    I am really looking forward to following your blog! Just be yourself and write about what interests you and what you learn and observe. Reading about health professionals discovering and having success with a paradigm that doesn’t match what they were taught, never gets old!


    • It’s great to get a look-in from a professional blogger like you, Jamie. I still feel like a blog baby finding my feet. I am lucky to have a solid scientific background (and ‘a functioning brain” in the words of Tom Naughton) to sift through all the nutrition garbage out there. For now the challenge is to translate it into easy language for my future patients. And by the way, “cycling, cynicism and coffee” sounds like a perfect combination to me.

  3. Hey,

    I’ve just discovered your blog today, and I’m finding myself nodding ferociously at all your posts!

    I’m a current year 12 student in Australia, with a passion for whole-food nutrition (particularly Primal and Weston Price type nutrition) and homeopathy.

    I’m at cross-roads as to where I should study next year. I want a degree that will give me credibility … but I’m not sure if I could go through a medical or conventional nutrition degree, as it goes against what I have experienced as being ‘healthy’.

    What would you suggest? There are courses in Biomedicine and Biochemistry that look more promising than Dietetics, but I’m curious about your oppion! Do you know of any decent courses that would fit with a holistic approach, or ideas for what to study?

    Thank you so much,


    • Hi Jaslyn, kudos on your interest in nutrition and healthy lifestyle. I’m glad you are enjoying the blog and hope it will help you choose the right direction for your future career. The question you ask is a hard one. Conventional medicine does not involve a lot of nutrition. I love it because I love hospitals, patients, learning about different diseases and amazing new ways to treat them. But if you interest is primarily in preventative care, you might be better placed with an alternative/natural medicine degree. My understanding of a degree of dietetics is that currently they stick to the Food Pyramid. You can look into homeopathy or accupuncture but be aware that these might not give you the scientific credibility you want. My first degree is in Medical science (majored in Biomedical sciences and Human biosciences: meaning biochemistry, anatomy and microbiology). It was great for basic science knowledge but not patient-based.
      What I am trying to say is that you have to decide whether you want to work with people or know the science. Or you can just get the degree that gets you close and then do your own study. This is pretty much what I am doing. Go to careers expo, look online for career descriptions, ask questions of people in these industries.

      Respectfully I would disagree with conventional medicine not being “healthy”. I see sick patients getting better every day, with their doctors working very hard and very long hours for that. unfortunately the system doesn’t promote holistic preventative medicine as much as we would like.
      Good luck with your HSC. Would love to hear what you decide.

  4. Anastasia, Thank you. Your blog is not only well-researched but features some of the best writing, with understandable examples and eye-popping analogies to really clarify the concepts and without a lot of hyperbole or preaching. I’ve been researching nutrition lately on my own (I’m a Ph.D.scientist in a totally unrelated field) and have come to the same conclusions, especially after reading Gary Taubes, but have been struggling to explain the main ideas to my family: “well see, the Isles of Langerhans start producing insulin when….” -you see my problem 😦 I’m MUCH better at explaining the electronics of solar cells (!), maybe because I “own it”, like you clearly do with health and nutrition. Since I discovered your blog last week (in a roundabout way through Mark’s Daily Apple, another really good one), I now just send the family links! Thank you again, please keep up the good work! I can see you’ll make a great doctor…shame you’re down-under, we need you more desperately ‘up’ here in the land of red-white-blue and bloated 🙂
    Marie Curious

    • Thank you, Marie Curious (love the name :)). My main goal in starting the blog was exactly that: to explain complicated concepts in a way anyone can just “get it”. I believe it’s a skill many scientists and researchers in this field lack, and I’m learning it as I go. Sometimes I get it right, sometimes I don’t. I am a big fan of Gary Taubes, as well as Mark Sisson. Good luck with educating your family. It’s the ones closest to us who are often the hardest to convince ;).

  5. “I can see you’ll make a great doctor…shame you’re down-under, we need you more desperately ‘up’ here in the land of red-white-blue and bloated”.

    You mean you are right here in Oz? I thought I was the only one, greetings from the Gold Coast!

Comments are closed.