Podcast #249 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/07/249-is-
Introduction: In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: Is
Resveratrol Really Bad For You, The Shocking Ingredients in
Beer, Debunking The Magic of Vitamins And Supplements, and
much much more.
Brock: So what you’ve been up to so far, Ben?
Ben: I’ve been burning my eyes out in front of my computer.
Brock: That sounds unpleasant.
Ben: Yeah. Match, candle, cattle poker, prod.
Brock: Bic lighter….
Ben: Yeah. No. I’ve just literally push published on the latest article, it’s
called, okay, ready for this. Brace Yourself.
Brock I’m ready.
Ben: How to fix your gut. 9 Bad things that happen when your
digestion goes wrong, how to hit the reboot button, and the best
way to detox your body. Yeah.
Brock: That’s a lot and I can see why that took you most of the day. Lots
lots of pictures of porta-potties on the post. Long lines of porta-
Brock: Of course, you’d have to, really. You’d be negligent if you did not
have porta-pottie pictures at least every paragraph.
Ben: Yeah, I think just about everybody that’s probably engaged in
some type of athletic event or like a triathlon or marathon or
whatever, probably has a porta-potty story.
Ben: Do you have any porta-potty stories?
Brock: I do, yeah. Actually my very first marathon, I got to about
kilometer 30 or 32 and had that I got to go, right now. There’s no
waiting so I ran into a porta-pottie but I was wearing spandex
shorts underneath some running shorts cause I didn’t know any
better at that point and when I went to stand up, they wouldn’t
come up because they were so sweaty and stuck to my calves so I
probably lost a good 2 minutes trying to get my shorts pulled up
my calf. Which is not the best place to be like stranded. It’s smelly,
it’s hot, and you can’t get your pants up and you’re watching the
time click by. It wasn’t awesome.
Ben: Oh, it’s so hot in those things. Mine was in Japan where all of the
porta-potties are squatty potties where it’s not a toilet, just a hole
in the bottom of the porta-pottie and I squatted in the wrong end.
I wasn’t sure which way my bum was supposed to face.
Brock: You were supposed to face the back of the porta-pottie or the front
or the door….
Ben: Left a nice steaming pile of poo for the next person to come in
Brock: Oh no.
Ben: So yeah. ‘Cause apparently, it doesn’t go down that little hole if
you go on the wrong end so.
Brock: So, it wasn’t where like somebody was gonna stand? It just was in
the wrong part of the hole. Okay.
Ben: Yeah, so.
Brock: I was thinking you could just like kicked it.
Ben: If we have any gastroenterologist or anything like that listening in,
they’re probably still listening and everyone else is gone.
Brock: Everybody else is like oh, delete.
Ben: Let’s go ahead and jump into the news flashes for the poop
doctors that are still with us.
Brock: Come over to bengreenfieldfitness.com/249 to find links to these
awesome actually, they are really awesome this week and very
timely. These were all the things that were snatched out of the
headlines of a lot of publications this week.
Ben: That’s right. There is a ton of kinda controversial articles that
came out that I got lots of questions about and the first one was
about Resveratrol and how…
Brock: Being bad for you.
Ben: Resveratrol supplements may block the heart healthy benefits of
exercise and of course our media darlings around the world, God
love them, they also of course twisted this to say that red wine in
general will blunt the effects of exercise which just ruined my
evening practice of drinking a nice glass of red wine after my
workout. I was pretty bummed.
Brock: But it doesn’t. It’s not the wine. It’s supplements, Resveratrol
Ben: Yeah, the idea was that they took 27 guys who were around 65
years old and for 8 weeks they did high-intensity exercise training
and half of the group got 250 milligrams of Resveratrol
supplement a day while the other group got a placebo pill and the
group that got the resveratrol was actually found not to have as
positive as an effect of exercise training on their blood pressure
and their blood cholesterol and their VO2 max.
And so what was reported around the world was that resveratrol
keeps you from getting fit when you’re exercising.
Brock: And they’re 65.
Ben: There were some pretty significant issues with the study. The first
is that, like I mentioned, both groups experienced a drop in blood
pressure and also a drop in cholesterol and the only thing was that
the group was taking the resveratrol actually had a slightly lower
drop in both of those values. Now, you could just as easily say,
when it comes to blood pressure, because the blood pressure was
maintained in a normal range anyways, perhaps resveratrol
actually helps you to maintain your blood pressure within a
normal range instead of getting too low or too high compared to
exercise only. You could interpret that one of two ways. As far as
cholesterol goes, the difference is in cholesterol were pretty
inconsequential. Cholesterol measures barely budge anyways, and
the slight budge that they did move was a little bit more in the
group that wasn’t taking the resveratrol. Considering that an
increase in blood cholesterol is usually due to an anti-
inflammatory response anyways, this once again, could have been
simply the fact that the body needed more cholesterol to fight off
inflammation ‘cause it didn’t have the resveratrol on board to do
that. And then the other thing was that they used synthetic
resveratrol tablets and synthetic resveratrol, these hard
compressed tablets, they’re known to degrade when they’re
exposed to light and heat and oxygen and normally, the idea
behind the resveratrol and the red wine or resveratrol from like a
liposomal or like a sublingual powder or something like that, is
that it’s supposed to activate this longevity-granting survival gene
called the sirtuin 1 survival gene. And a synthetic resveratrol that
doesn’t actually get absorbed or is broken down and oxidized, may
not actually result in this same effect. So ultimately, I would not
stop drinking your nightly glass of red wine if that’s something
that you do. If you’re taking a resveratrol supplements, the
number of studies that are out there that show the heart health
benefits of resveratrol are pretty dang numerous and so I would
not let this one study on twenty some odd old dudes kinda block
your enjoyment of your glass of red wine.
Brock: Good news.
Ben: Or your resveratrol so there you go. So what do you think, should
we debunk another study here?
Brock: Take it down.
Ben: Not a study, a book. This was the book about supplements that the
New York Times was, it may have been NPR, I don’t know if it’s
NPR or the New York Times but they talk about this brand new
book that came out called Do You believe in Magic: The Sense and
Nonsense of Alternative Medicine and this book was written by
this dude named Paul Offit and the book goes into details of how,
if you take like large quantities of vitamin A, vitamin E, beta
carotene or selenium, or any of these high-dose anti-oxidants or
synthetic vitamins that could actually increase your risk of cancer,
increase your risk of heart disease and potentially shorten your
life and that’s kind of the gist of the book. Now, there are some
issues with the book and actually it was the New York Times who
came out with an opinion piece entitled Don’t Take Your Vitamins
Based Off This Book.
Ben: So on the issues primarily with the book is that, when we look at
nutrition recommendations, especially in the United States for
adults when it comes to supplementation, most of the
recommendations for supplementations are based off of what you
would need to take to prevent diseases like scurvy or rickets or
pellagra so for example, they say you were to take 60 milligrams
of ascorbic acid or vitamin c a day, and that’s actually what you
need to prevent scurvy. And so where ....
Brock: So it’s pretty minimal.
Ben: Yeah and….
Brock: It’s kind of a baseline.
Ben: That dose is too low for optimal benefits especially saying
somebody who’s got, you know, you store a lot of vitamin C in
your adrenal glands so if you’re beating up your body and have
adrenal fatigue, or overtraining or something like that, you know,
60 milligrams of ascorbic acid is not gonna really even make a
difference at all especially when you consider that you know, the
type of studies that are cited on the book are all based off doses of
synthetic vitamin c supplemements, you know, similar to what we
are saying about synthetic resveratrol. Whole food, vitamin C
source, at a high dose, that can actually be really good for an
athlete you know, who has adrenal fatigue or somebody who
wants to step up their immune system activity or something in
those lines. You know, same goes for vitamin d. The RDI for
vitamin d in the States right now is 600 international units and
that intake is far below what you would actually need to generate
optimal, what are called 25-hydroxy vitamin d blood levels.
Brock: Yeah, I think you’ve recommended like 10 times that dose on the
Ben: Yeah, in many cases, you know, my recommendation for vitamin
d in somebody who’s got low in vitamin d was 35 international
units of vitamin d per pound of body weight and you know, many
of the studies that are cited in the actual book were performed on
the use of these antioxidant supplements like you know, beta
carotene for example, in smokers and so we’re talking about kinda
people who were living in unhealthy lifestyle anyway, we’re
looking at the cancer rates and the effect of these doses of
synthetic anti-oxidants in smokers. Yeah, there wasn’t much of a
change in things like lung cancer risk but again, we’re talking
about sub-par supplementation in an unhealthy population with
Ben: When we step back and we look at things like antioxidants and
multivitamins, when we’re getting them from real high-quality
sources that are preferably whole food based, and we’re giving
them to a healthy population, that is usually you know, in the case
of many listeners to this podcast, kinda beating up their body and
asking their body to go above and beyond, even it might be able to
get from normal food sources, what it comes down to is you just
gotta be careful to what media does with a lot of these studies, you
know. They say things like don’t take your vitamins or you know,
don’t have that glass of red wine after your workout when in fact,
in most cases, we have to step back and look at the way that things
really are and not this sub-par supplementation of crap
compounds and unhealthy population.
Brock: The headline should be Don’t Take Crappy Vitamins.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. So that being said, now that we are all frustrated,
let’s talk about booze.
Brock: Oh no. And it’s beer to isn’t it?
Ben: Yeah. And this was an article that came out on foodbabe.com
which is a website that is actually safe for work despite the name.
Brock: I’ve never been to foodbabe.com before I saw this post but I think
I’ll be back.
Ben: Yeah. Foodbabe.com is a cool website and the name of this article
that came out is called “The Shocking Ingredients in Beer” and the
article starts off by talking about how your liver metabolizes
alcohol first before it metabolizes like carbohydrates and proteins
and fat and so that alcohol in general is a decent way to gain
weight if you’re not careful and you know, I really don’t think that
a glass of beer here and there or a cup of red wine is necessarily
gonna be a big issue when it comes to weight loss and I think that
most people, the longevity enhancing benefits of something like a
glass of red wine as well as like the stress reducing benefits kinda
go above and beyond any type of fat-gain risks that may come
along with it but what was concerning to me in this article was the
number of legal additives that were found as being acceptable
additives that you could add to beer and also the fact that beer is
not even regulated at all by the FDA, it’s regulated in the United
States by the Department of Treasury or something like that.
I mean, it’s crazy. But what they found is that when you look at a
lot of these kinda popular beers out there like Bud Light and
Michelob and Corona and PBR, which I know all of our listeners
drink, the Pabst Blue Ribbon, classy.
Brock: All our great listeners with the great big beards and the trucker
Ben: Classy stuff, that’s right, that’s right. ‘Cause we are the white trash
of the white trash podcast.
Brock: And also the hipsters love us.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, exactly. Anyways though, jam-packed with stuff like
monosodium glutamate or MSG, propylene glycol this ingredient
found in anti-freeze, calcium disodium EDTA which is made from
formaldehyde and cyanides, a bunch of different sulfides and anti-
microbial preservatives which have huge issues when it comes to
auto-immune reactions, allergies, asthma, stuff like that. High
fructose, corn syrup, dextrose, regular corn syrup, a bunch of
different food colorings like blue and red and yellow, you know,
all the FD&C food colorings as well as insect-based dyes, BPA and
the actual can-liners, the best phenolate that can leech into the
beer, that’s basically an estrogen mimicker as well carrageenan
which is linked to the inflammation of your digestive system, and
irritable bowel syndrome and a bunch of these beers have these
compounds in them and I mean the article gets pretty specific in
terms of which beers contain which of those ingredients that I just
Ben: You know, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel though. There’s a
pot of gold at the end of the dark chemical-filled rainbow that she
Brock: Thank goodness.
Ben: So German beers. German beers are good. Go Germans.
Apparently they’re pretty strict on what goes into their beers and
like they gotta have those co-ingredients of water and hops and
yeast and then either malted barley or wheat and German beers
taste cleaner and they don’t have a lot of those harmful things in
them. So German. There you go.
Ben: Also, certified organic beers. So if a beer is certified and organic,
it’s also good to go. And these are usually like smaller beer
producers, you know, and you could support your local organic
beer farmer that way. Crafts and micro-brew beers, like micro
beers are also good as long as they haven’t been bought out. You
know, like Rolling Rock is a micro-brew but that got bought out by
Anheuser Bush so now they can put stuff in it. Blue Moon is
another one but that got bought out by Miller and Coors so.
Brock: That’s too bad. That’s a really nice beer.
Ben: Yeah. Pretty clean beers that aren’t German and not certified
organic but that would be okay. Sierra Nevada, they do a good
one. Heineken is okay and Amstel Light is another one that would
be considered okay. So there you go. We’ll link to that article in
the show notes by the way but it’s pretty interesting, all this stuff
that’s allowed to be added to beer.
Ben: I’m personally not a beer drinker anyways but I know you are.
Brock: I am. Yeah, I just got back from what I consider to be the land of
delicious beers. Was in upstate New York and man, there are
some really good micro breweries up there.
Ben: Nice. You know, we should probably come up with some kind of a
drinking game for bengreenfieldfitness.com.
Ben: Considering I just read an article on how to detox your body so we
got those bases covered.
Brock: Yeah so once you finish the drinking game, you know where to
find out what to do next.
Ben: We know everybody’s not going to be guilty about drinking red
wine now, we know that we’ve equipped our listeners on how to
choose healthy beer so the next step is gonna be the drinking
game. So maybe we should let the listeners come up with a good
drinking game for Ben Greenfield Fitness.
Brock: Yeah, I think we’ve got ourselves a contest here.
Ben: Head over to the facebook page. Leave your proposal for the
brand new Ben Greenfield Fitness drinking game. We’ll do it.
Brock: But remember, if you’re not sloshed by the end of the hour and a
half, it’s not a real game.
Brock: Do we have special announcements? I’ve never done this show
before. Alright, I maybe the slowest reader in the world, I’m still
working on the perfect health diet on the book itself and I’m really
enjoying it. That’s probably what’s taking me so long ‘cause I’m
actually reading every single word and trying to absorb it all. It
really is a great book. I love the way it just takes you through all
these, all the different reasons why you should be eating what you
should be eating.
Ben: That’s right.
Brock: And what’s gonna be even better is going to the Perfect Health
Diet Retreat in Austin, Texas.
Ben: That’s right.
Brock: Where it’d gonna be.
Ben: The Perfect Health Diet Retreat. Perfect Health Diet, my go-to
book. I actually just wrote an article at bengreenfieldfitness.com
that has like 40 different meals for kinda like busy athletes that I
wrote. A lot of them are based around some of the concepts on the
perfect health diet but we’ll put a link on the show notes. 30-day
immersion program in this diet done in Austin, Texas which is a
dang good place to go anyways. If you like music and good food,
so check that out. We’ll put a link in the show notes but February
3rd to March 3rd to freakin’ whatever next year is, 2014. 2014.
Brock: That’s a month long?
Ben: It’s a month long. You can kinda choose like you can pop in for a
few days, you can go a week long immersion program, you can do
a month-long immersion program. I’m gonna be going down
there and teaching specifically like athletes how to kinda blend the
perfect health diet with an active lifestyle but check that out.
Perfect Health Diet Retreat, Austin, Texas. Really cool. So.
Brock: Very cool.
Ben: I’ll put a bunch of info in that in the show notes and go listen to
last week’s episode. If you wanna hear and interview at the end of
that episode with kinda like the head chef who’s getting the food
Brock: Oh and there’d be food too.
Ben: Oh yeah. It’s all like catered and they teach you how to cook.
Ben: There’s cooking classes. It’s pretty cool. It’s all based on like,
optimum circadian rhythms and there’s like hydroponic gardens
and hydroponic fish beds and houses and all this stuff. Crazy. Also
for people who are over in London, I’m gonna be coming over
there to speak at the in Global Triathlon Conference London.
September 10th through the 12th but I wanna alert all of our
Brock: This is London, England by the way.
Ben: Yes, exactly. I’m not gonna be leaving London until the 15th so
basically, September 13th to the 15th, I wanna get a bunch of our
listeners together and do something fun. Whether we do a clinic
or a meetup or we all go whatever, get plowed on organic British
beer. Either way, September 13th to the 15th, I will be in London
and I’ve got a pretty much a clean slate on my schedule so let’s
rally the listeners and do something fun in London. Email me,
email@example.com if you’re interested in kinda
helping put something together, maybe find a good whatever they
have over there, gastro pub or I don’t know.
Brock: I don’t think they actually have pubs in England. I could be wrong.
Ben: Yeah, I don’t….
Brock: But I think that’s an American thing, I don’t think that’s an
Ben: Yeah. Yeah.
Brock: Like they really have little places where you can eat vegetables and
Ben: Yeah, no beer, no biscuits, no tea, no crumpets.
Brock: Yeah, definitely not.
Ben: Yeah, London’s not the place for that.
Ben: So yeah, the 13th through the 15th, I’ll be over there just chilling
and then also I’d be speaking at the Global Triathlon Conference
September 10th to 12th. We’ll put a link to that in the show notes as
well. A couple other things, the Thailand trip is, we’re just about
full with folks for everything except the Thanyapura part of that
trip. Meaning that we’ve got kinda like a 4-day intensive health,
nutrition, fitness kinda triathlon-focused camp that’s gonna be
happening November 17th through the 21st over at Thanyapura
which is like this high-end triathlon training resort over in
Thailand so if you wanna get on in that trip, we’ll put a link in the
show notes for that too and all this stuff is at, what is it Brock?
Brock: It is episode 249, bengreenfieldfitness.com/249.
Ben: That’s right. And then one other thing, by the way, I sent an email
this week about if you’re a gmail user, if you use gmail, they
changed a bunch of stuff in gmail so when I send out emails to
you, you may not be getting them, if I send you out…
Brock: They’d be getting them, they’ll just be in a different spot. Not your
Ben: Yeah like later today I’ll send out an email that I’ll link to that
detox article that I just got done writing and it’s gonna wind up in
your promotions inbox in gmail and so if you want your stuff from
me to wind up in your primary inbox rather than your promotions
inbox, then you basically just go, you find any email from me,
most of them come not from firstname.lastname@example.org but
from email@example.com, but you find any
email and you just drag and drop that email into your primary
inbox and then it’ll just say like do this for all future messages
from firstname.lastname@example.org, you click yes and then
you’re good to go and you’ve beaten google back once again.
Brock: And don’t be surprised if you look in your google account, you
don’t see this feature yet, they’re rolling it out slowly. I know my
gmail account doesn’t have it yet but it probably will be showing
up in the next few weeks so be ready if it’s not there already.
Ben: So if you mysteriously quit getting all the annoying emails that I
send out every week, that’s why, so.
Ben: Hey folks, it’s me, Ben Greenfield.
Abel: and this is Abel James.
Ben: and you may recognize me, Ben, from the Ben Greenfield Fitness
Abel: Or me from the Fat-Burning Man Show.
Ben: And today, Abel and I wanna tell you the number 1 workout that
we’re doing right now to burn fat. So Abel, I’ll let you take it away
first. What is it that you’re doing right now when it comes to
exercise to get your body as lean as possible?
Abel: Alright, so the first thing I do and a lot of people skip is a warm-
up. I do about 5 minutes of shadow boxing and light stretching
then I go straight into doing some pull-ups to failure, doing some
burpees, and then I do some heavy squats and heavy deadlifts in
my shed in the backyard and that’s it. It’s easy and I love it right
Ben: Did you just say a shed in the backyard?
Abel: That’s right. I workout in my shed. Usually I workout actually in
my backyard in the sun because it’s just that nice in Austin this
Ben: I was just gonna say the shed’s about as masochistic as you can
get. See out there doing your squats and deadlifts.
Abel: That’s where I’m punching ______ [0:27:17.2]
Ben: So I’ve got this thing that I’m doing, it’s called a Litvinov Sprint
Abel: I love how you geek out all the time Ben.
Ben: I have no clue what Litvinov even means. Anyways though, what I
do is I’ve got this 50 lb. dumbbell and I take it out to the hill
behind my house and I do 15 dumbbell swings and then sprint
400 meters up the hill. Like I drop the dumbbell and the
dumbbell kinda like still in midair, dropping to the ground and
I’m off sprinting. And I do that 8 times through and man, when it
comes to a fat-burning workout, that is about the most potent
thing that I found yet so.
Abel: So you sprint back and forth before the dumbbell even hits the
Ben: Exactly. It’s like Roadrunner from Looney Tunes.
Abel: That’s a fat-burning workout right there.
Ben: Exactly. So I guess folks are probably wondering why Abel and I
are here geeking out about fat loss it’s because we’ve got a new
Abel: That’s right.
Ben: And it is basically Abel and I following each other around each
other’s houses with a camera, virtually of course since Abel is in
Austin and I live in Washington and we are basically showing you
everything that we do from the time we get out of bed in the
morning, all the way through lunch, through workouts, through
dinner, through bed time to live what we call a lean lifestyle.
Abel: Yeah, and you’ll learn things that are kind of the more advanced
strategies a lot of times on our podcasts, our shows, our blogs,
we’ll talk about things that are kinda generalized to the public but
these are the things we literally do ourselves everyday. All of the
secrets of what we’re cooking, what we’re eating for breakfast or
not eating for breakfast for that matter, what we may or may not
be putting in our coffee depending on the day. Pretty much any of
the supplements we are taking and tons more. All of it I mean,
Ben has all sorts of crazy gizmos that you’ll be able to see. It’s a
blast to watch.
Ben: And Abel’s house is much cleaner than mine as you’ll also find
out. So anyways though, here’s what you do if you want to get
inside the lean lifestyle insider right now. Alright so Abel, what is
the URL that people can go to if they want to get in on the lean
lifestyle insider right now?
Abel: That would be leanlifestyleinsider.com/b.
Ben: That’s leanlifestyleinsider.com/b. And I’ll put a link in the show
notes for all of you too. Hey Abel, thanks for coming on the show.
Abel: Anytime Ben.
Heather: Hey guys, this is Heather from Denver. I’ve got a question about
charcoal. I know that it’s taken to negate some of the negative
effects of conventional meat and alcohol but a couple of things.
Can you overtake charcoal? Let’s say you’re on vacation and
you’re drinking a lot of alcohol and you’re eating a lot of meat and
fish and you don’t know the source, is it okay to just pop it at
every meal, throughout the day? And also, I’m wondering how
charcoal works? I know it’s like a binder – binds the toxins and
takes them out of your body but would it also bind good things in
your body? Does it kinda rob you of any beneficial nutrients when
you take it? Yeah, so any info you have on charcoal. Kinda
fascinated by it right now. I would really appreciate it. Thanks.
Brock: I’ve been wondering this myself as well. I’m glad Heather actually
stepped up and hi Heather.
Ben: Yeah. Heather you just basically, you go to like the local grocery
store and you grab yourself some charcoal briskets and you can
put it on your counter, get a sledge hammer, chop those babies up
and then you just kinda suck on it. Like gum or like a piece of
candy. No. Charcoal.
Brock: At first I thought you were actually telling something like I was oh
this was awesome, I didn’t know you can…. Oh, I see.
Ben: The DIY.
Brock: Don’t do that.
Ben: The DIY charcoal capsules. Yeah, activated charcoal will basically
bind the toxins. It’s an antidote that absorbs most organic toxins
or chemicals or poisons and a lot of emergency rooms actually
administer pretty large doses of activated charcoal for certain
kinds of poisoning. Yeah. And your girlfriend’s a yeah, emergency
room doctor or nurse. Did they use that?
Brock: They do and she said they often, the entire room gets covered in it
when they’re using it too. It’s really hard to wrangle so these ones
that are for sale in Amazon, they’re in these tiny little caplets are
probably a lot easier to handle than the stuff they use in the ER.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. And it works by absorbing chemicals meaning that
it reduces their toxicity and it works for the entire length of your
stomach, your small intestines, your large intestines, it pretty
much will absorb toxins from your entire GI tract. I also
incidentally have used like an activated charcoal-based tooth
powder to whiten teeth naturally. You can keep it on hand like if
you got kids around and they ingest like toxins or household
chemicals but interestingly, you know, a lot of meat, you know,
fish, beef, whatever has toxins in it as well. Like, I travel with
activated charcoal when I’m gonna be consuming meat from an
unknown source or you know, if I get exposed to something that I
might need a poison antidote against. I use it, it can actually soak
up gas pretty well so I use for example, that UCan SuperStarch as
my fuel during triathlons and like if you use that stuff for
whatever, 5, 7, 10 hours in a row, it can ferment and it can give
you some gas. And I actually use this specific activated charcoal
brand called CharcoCaps and it’s a homeopathic, anti-gas formula
and I get zero gas discomfort, or pressure, or bloating or anything
like that when I take that right after I finish a workout or a race
that I’ve use that SuperStarch stuff during and it’s just, you know,
it’s got activated charcoal in it, like a vegetable-based charcoal and
then it’s got some homeopathics in it like club moss and bark and
sulfur and these are all traditional homeopaths that are used for
abdominal pains and like bloating and flatulence and stuff like
Brock: Okay. I was wondering what made this a homeopathic version.
Brock: So they actually added some stuff in there. That’s cool.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. So you just keep this stuff on hand and you would
use charcoal like as part of a detox protocol and go read the detox
article that I literally just published today. You know, if you
listened to this the time it came out, it’s July 25th and that article
just went live. And you can also use it to just like basically take
prior to any meal that contains potential toxins like meat or
animal products for unknown sources or you know, whatever.
Foods that tend to give you gas, anything like that. Yeah. So that’s
basically the way that I’d use it.
Brock: I think the biggest part of her question is, the most important part
of her question is that is it possible to take too much or take it too
often like if you keep popping these capsules all the time, is it
going to bind the good stuff and eventually sort of leave your body
of any nutrients as well.
Ben: Yeah, I would imagine that it probably could do that. I mean, it’s a
powerful antidote that I would not be using as like your daily go-
to supplement and you know….
Brock: Don’t use it as an excuse to eat at Burger King everyday and then
pop your charcoal.
Ben: Yeah. Exactly. Even though they could do that, they can market
the Whopper with charcoal kinda up sell you. You want some
charcoal caps with that? CharcoCaps, super size me.
Brock: Charco milkshake?
Ben: That’s right. No, I wouldn’t use it everyday, all the time. I just use
it every, like, I have CharcoCaps on hand and I pretty much only
use them when I am travelling and eating meat at a place that I
don’t know where the meat came from or after I used like a sports
beverage like SuperStarch where I know I’m gonna get gas just
from the amount of carbohydrate fermentation in the digestive
Brock: So very specific usage. Very, to pinpoint what might cause some
problems, take it then, don’t take it otherwise?
Ben: Exactly. Exactly.
Brock: Sounds good.
Ben: And you can also break open the caps and like smear the the black
dust underneath your eyes like a football player….
Ben: And it just gives you a cool look like before you go workout in the
gym or whatever. It just makes you look a little bit more badass.
Brock: And sucks the toxins out of your eyes.
Ben: That’s right.
Clay: Hey Ben. This is Clay. I was wondering if you can compare or
contrast the SweetBeat app and the Inner balance app from
Heartmath and give us some good reasons why should you use
one over the other or you use both.
Brock: So I guess we should probably start off by saying that both of
these apps are things that measure your heart rate variability
which is something we’ve talked about a lot on this show.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, like if you go to bengreenfieldfitness.com and you do a
search for heart rate variability, we talked about that a bunch so I
won’t get into that much as much as the difference between these
2 apps. So think about it this way, the SweetBeat app is an iPhone
app and it allows you to measure your heart rate variability along
with things like the tone of what’s called your vagus nerve, your
sympathetic nervous system health, your parasympathetic
nervous system health. That’s just a really good snapshot what’s
going on with how strong your nervous system is. Think about it
like if you were gonna hit the gym, the SweetBeat is gonna tell you
how strong you are and how capable you are of actually lifting
weights at the gym. Right. It’s just like….
Brock: In terms of your nervous system.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. So whereas Inner Balance would actually teach you
like how to get stronger or how to lift weights properly if we’re
gonna use that gym analogy so what the Inner Balance does is it
tests your heart rate variability but then it also has software on it
that walks you through the process of learning how to distress so
there is this process called a cohesion technique and the cohesion
technique is this technique of actually thinking of positive
feelings, positive emotions, positive experiences and then using
those positive experiences to specifically reduce the negative
effects of stress to improve relaxation, to build resilience to stress
and this is biofeedback. It’s actually biofeedback training within
the Inner Balance app so you’re both testing your heart rate
variability and then learning how to sustain really good levels of
distress. It has coherence games on it like there’s a game called
Dual Drive and another one called Tropical Heat and these games,
they actually teach you how to distress properly and so if you’re
somebody who say uses the SweetBeat heart rate variability app
or any number of these heart rate variability apps like the Omega
Wave or the BioForce or whatever and you’ve find that you’ve
consistently got this crappy scores, that’s when you might wanna
you know, shell out some extra bucks. I think the Inner Balance
app is like 97 dollars or something like that if you get the
hardware that you need to go along with it like the little thing that
attaches to your ear. I believe it’s right on 97 dollars. So you buy
that and it trains you.
It’s actual bio feedback training. And so yeah, it’s a little bit more
advanced but it’s something where for somebody who’s really got
consistently poor heart rate variability values and high amounts of
stress, this is what would teach you how to achieve that, you
know, that inner balance so to speak. So that’s the difference
between the two. One just tells you what’s going on, the other one
tells you what’s going on and trains you on how to fix it.
Brock: I don’t know if you tried this but wearing the SweetBeat app, I’ve
tried doing different kinds of activities, thinking different kinds of
thoughts and then like actually, looking at those specific times
during the test to see what my reaction was and sometimes it’s
more interesting to look at the low frequency versus the high
frequency or the fight or flight versus rest and digest frequencies
of your heart rate like when I do something like kiss my girlfriend,
they tend to level out really quickly. It’s like an automatic
reaction, they just, they come together really nicely whereas when
I check my email, they fly apart and it’s like almost instantaneous.
It’s really cool stuff so I can see how that Inner Balance will be
Ben: I just got this visual of you making out with your girlfriend and
the heart rate strap with the little dongle come out the iPhone
attached to your ear. Yeah man, that’s a sexy look.
Brock: And then looking over her shoulder and immediately checking my
Ben: Yeah, I bet she likes that.
Ben: Yeah. Way to go man.
Keith: Hi Ben and Brock. This is Keith from Texas. I listen to your show
a lot and I really enjoy it. I have a question regarding PH. I use a
little litmus strip orally and tested about 6.4 and I’m wondering if
I should do anything at all to try to get it up more to 7 or 7 and a
half range. Thanks a lot.
Ben: He’s gonna die.
Brock: Keith, go to the hospital.
Ben: Yes, drive yourself.
Brock: Don’t even drive.
Ben: Have somebody else drive you.
Brock: Drink some vinegar.
Ben: Actually this is really interesting ‘cause we did a podcast on this.
We had Doctor Ted Morter on the podcast.
Brock: I remember him.
Ben: And I’ll link to it in the show notes. And it was really interesting
‘cause he goes into like you know, how eating an alkaline diet can
do things like reduce incidents of migraine and headaches.
Ben: And I thought it was interesting because we actually, my wife went
through you know, this 30-day urine PH testing and an alkalinic
diet protocol and actually they used it to get rid of her headaches
and you know, for that perspective, I think it’s interesting. You
know, if you eat an alkalinic diet, it’s definitely gonna be in many
cases more healthy than an acidic diet but the whole basis behind
this is that when you consume a food, it can be an acid-forming
food or an alkaline-forming food. So for example, animal products
like meat or a steak or grains, those are acid-forming foods and so
solutions with the PH that are, that’s less than 7, that’s an acidic
PH and so if your urine PH is dropping, that would indicate that
maybe you’d eaten an acid-forming food and if your urine PH was
increasing, maybe that would indicate or that would indicate that
you’d eaten an alkaline-forming food and alkaline-forming food
would be like kale or you know, fruits and vegetables and things
like that. And some foods are purely neutral you know, like
coconut oil for example or other fats, those are just neutral. And
that’s because they don’t contain protein or sulfur or any minerals
that are going to affect your PH. So the tricky part here is that a
food will affect the PH of your urine but that doesn’t mean that it’s
affecting your physiology. It doesn’t mean that it’s affecting your
blood PH. Your kidneys are very very good at regulating your
blood PH and unless you have like a renal issue or you have
kidney disease or something like that where your kidneys are
unable to regulate your body’s acidity or your alkalinity, the type
of food that you eat is not gonna change your blood PH that much
and the blood PH is really what’s going to influence whether or
not your body is healthy, whether or not your metabolism is able
to work properly. So these diets that are based of of eating an
acidic food or eating an alkaline food and then testing your PH
and kinda adjusting your diet based off of your urine PH, they’re
not necessarily working because they’re changing your PH,
because it’s so hard to change your blood PH. I suspect that the
reason that these PH type of diets work is that it’s simply healthier
you know, when you’re downing a lot of things like you know, kale
and a lot of these fresh produce type of foods and a lot of these
things that are a little bit more alkaline forming along with limited
amounts of meat and relatively limited amounts of grains, I mean,
there’s very few people that would argue that would be, that that
would not be a healthy diet.
Ben: You know, and when we look at some of these arguments, when it
comes to acid-forming foods, you know, like avoid meat and avoid
grains entirely because they’re gonna cause bone
demineralization, or osteoporosis, you know, that’s an argument
that often made by vegans for example, that a high-meat diet will
result in leeching from the bones because it’s a very acid-forming
food. There’s really not a lot of evidence to show that that’s true.
And what this really comes down to, the main thing you got to
wrap your head around is that foods don’t really affect your blood
PH. Yes, certain foods such as an alkaline-forming food like kale is
gonna be very high in phyto-nutrients and high in minerals and
high in flavanoids and chockfull of a lot of compounds that are
gonna be really healthy for you and probably will have some good
downstream positive metabolic effects but it’s not what’s it’s doing
to your blood PH that’s causing that effect so this whole PH diet
can work but not because it’s really changing the PH of your body.
Now if you wanna dig into this a little bit more, then you could go
for example, read a really good 2-part article series that Chris
Kresser recently wrote over at chriskresser.com and the myth of
the PH diet or the myth of this acid-alkaline diet and just the idea
that you know, anally keeping track of your urine, that doesn’t
really sound right the way that I just said that does it?
Brock: Yeah, that’s the wrong side. That’s the…. Yeah. It comes out the
Ben: Keeping track of your urine or your saliva using PH test strips is
not really necessary as much as focusing on not overdoing your
meat and your grain consumption and then getting moderate
amounts of dark leafy greens and dark fruits and vegetables. And
if your urine is consistently, if your urine PH is consistently low
and your consistently down like below 6.8 specifically, probably
does indicate that you could do a little bit better job you know,
maybe limiting acidic compounds like grains and maybe
increasing your intake of rich green vegetables, you know, sea
vegetables and kale and things of that nature but don’t put all of
your eggs in that PH basket because you know, there’s not a lot of
evidence to show that this strict PH diet actually works. Now if
you are kinda wanting to look for the optimum level of urine PH,
that again isn’t going to reflect your blood PH but could reflect the
actual appropriateness of your diet. The actual number that you’d
wanna be looking for for your urine PH should ideally be right
around 7.2. Okay. So that’s what you’d be looking for. Salivary PH
would also be pretty close to that, that 7.2 number….
Brock: So Keith’s a little bit acidic but not drastically so.
Brock: He could put himself out there by having a burger at lunch or….
Ben: Yeah and…..
Brock: Eating the bun.
Ben: You know, all that my wife did, you know the big change that she
made that really did get rid of her headaches was she started
having a kale shake every morning. And you know, I don’t think
that anyone would deny that there are some health benefits of
doing that and frankly, you know, that’s my breakfast about every
morning these days anyways so there you go.
Brock: It kinda comes down to that same old thing of eat a really varied
diet. Don’t concentrate on one side or the other too much and
you’d probably be in a good position.
Ben: Yup, exactly. And then also, just don’t think that your urine PH is
necessarily the reflection of what’s going on in your blood. Your
body is not broken, your kidney does a pretty good job tightly
regulating the PH of your blood and your extra soluble fluid and
all that jazz so yeah, there you go.
Craig: Hey Ben and Brock. This is Craig again, from Birmingham. I’m a
huge fan of TianChi and take it everyday and now I’ve added
Inner Peace to the mix but my question is are both necessary or
could you just go with one like go with more Inner Peace rather
than taking both? If there’s a difference, I’d love to know it and I
know that TianChi has caffeine but other than that, I don’t know
what the differences are so I wanted to know your opinion on that.
Thanks. Bye bye.
Brock: So we had a question about Inner Balance, now we’ve got a
question about Inner Peace.
Ben: Inner peace.
Brock: I like it. I’m feeling very Zen.
Ben: I would just like to say that word. It does make me feel like a
monk on top of the Himalayan Mountain. Hey speaking of umm
did you watch America’s Got Talent? Ever see that show?
Brock: No I don’t.
Ben: You don’t watch that in Canada.
Brock: I don’t have a TV.
Ben: Oh I don’t either but I watch it on Hulu. There’s this….
Brock: Yeah we don’t have Hulu.
Ben: There’s this contestant on it and he calls himself special head and
he like levitates and he does magic but he always starts off with
the whole umm thing. It’s kinda cool. Anyways, speaking of umm,
TianChi versus Inner Peace. So these are, both TianChi as well as
Inner Peace are compounds that are formulated by this Chinese
herbologist that lives down near Portland, Oregon named Roger
Drummer. And he’s….
Brock: Is this the same guy?
Ben: Same dude. He’s a really cool guy, one of the best Chinese
herbologists in the world in my opinion in terms of his knowledge
of Chinese herbal medicine and how to formulate tonics that are
going to be able to affect your adrenal function and he also has a
really good website. I think it’s rogerdrummer.com, I’m blanking
on the name of it but he’s 2 kinda flagship formulations or his
original flagship formulation was TianChi. I stumbled across
TianChi a couple of years ago when one of the people who Roger
consults with who is in the same town as me, I was his personal
trainer, he gave me a few, not capsules, a few packets of it.
Ben: Super duper powerful stuff when it comes to mitigating stress and
it’s also got a lot of really cool neurotropics in it which are brain-
enhancing compounds like huperzine and club moss and stuff like
that so makes you smarter, stabilizes your stress levels, and it’s
just kind of a really cool, sexy supplement that is, it is something I
take everyday and it’s something that, it’s one of my kinda like
highly recommended go-to supplements called TianChi.
Brock: And it tastes a little like Kool Aid too. It’s kinda nice.
Ben: Yeah. Exactly.
Brock: It’s like healthy Kool Aid.
Ben: So you know, I order a few hundred boxes of this stuff every
month and it gets stocked at our warehouse over in Philadelphia
and you can order it and kinda like add it to pretty much anything
that you order from Pacific Elite Fitness and a ton of people use it.
We actually get out of stock almost every single month ‘cause it…..
Brock: That’s for rationing my mind right now. I don’t wanna run out like
halfway through my box.
Ben: Yeah, it’s….
Brock: Oh do I need it today? Do I need it today? No, I will wait ‘til
Ben: It’s produced in really small batches. It doesn’t sit for you know,
years getting sprayed with ethylene oxide, you know, over at
China, you know, it’s fresh real herbs. It’s like a good 40 pounds
worth of herbs extracted in this tiny little packet. The issue with it
though is it’s got trace amounts of certain nervous system
stimulants like caffeine in it. It’s got a little bit of fructose in it and
some people either don’t want fructose in caffeine or they don’t
need fructose in caffeine. The group that doesn’t need fructose in
caffeine would be someone who’s in like a deep state of adrenal
fatigue who’s really overtrained themselves or somebody who’s
like wanting to use this stuff in the afternoon or the early evening
and they’re caffeine sensitive and you know, we’re talking about
the equivalent of like a quarter cup of coffee. But for some people
that does kinda muss up your sleep later on so it’s never really
been an issue for me but what Roger did was he wanted to take
out all of this components you know, ashwagandha and
schizandra and gotu kola, and Chinese liquor shroud and all this
stuff that’s in TianChi and get it in a capsule form that doesn’t
have fructose or caffeine in it and that’s what Inner Peace is. So
it’s basically the same thing except you could take it like right
before bed for example and you’d be good to go. Like the first time
that I took it, I took it with lunch, I went to sleep in my room for
my typical you know, 20-60 minute post-lunch siesta and I slept
for 3 hours.
Ben: And that’s how much this stuff can kind of stabilize your adrenal
so if you need to be distressed, it will distress you.
It’s one of the best stress control compounds that I’ve really come
across. So that’s the difference between Inner Peace and TianChi.
TianChi is a powder of Chinese adaptogenic herbs you add to a
glass of water or you dump it in your mouth, has trace amounts of
fructose and caffeine in it and there are some situations where you
wouldn’t want that. Inner Peace is a capsule and you swallow it
like any other capsule with a glass of water. Gold standard, if you
really want to get the full benefits of using Chinese adaptogens in
your daily protocol would be use some TianChi in the morning or
the mid-morning and then you pop some Inner Peace like in the
afternoon or before dinner and there you go. And then you get, if
you really want to take it to the extremes, you get one of those like
giant Asian back tattoos, you know what I’m talking about? Like
the Japanese gangster ones?
Ben: Toss one of those into the mix and then you’re just a complete
badass Asian herbologist so that was a joke by the way, for those
of you who just wrote that down. I know some people take us
seriously and you know, they just wrote down in their day
planner, make appointment with tattoo parlor. No, don’t get the
giant back tattoo, that’s probably a fast path to hepatitis C but you
know, you may want to think about doing the TianChi in the
morning, Inner Peace in the afternoon, that’s a pretty potent little
1-2 combo for stress control.
Brock: I have noticed that if I take the TianChi like often, but pretty
much, every morning when I wake up I have a cup of coffee, fist
thing I do. Then I’ll do my workout, take TianChi and then wait
like 45 minutes and then have BulletProof coffee. If I do that
combination of cup of coffee, TianChi and then BulletProof
coffee, I kind of freak out a little bit.
Brock: So you do have to be a little bit careful with, I guess that’s
probably the caffeine just overload.
Ben: Yeah, listen to your body because a lot of that stuff, if you overdo
it, let’s say you’re doing like you know, Dave Asprey’s BulletProof
coffee and you’re doing like some Chinese Herbal blends, and
maybe whatever. I know some of our listeners use Aniracetam or
maybe you’re using like Onnits Alpha Brain or something like
that, like once you start to stack a lot of these stuff, you may notice
that your sleep suffers later on in the day you know like 8 hours
later and I’ve certainly, you know, I’ve done a little bit of self-
experimentation with different things and I personally, I don’t do
very well when I start to mix all this stuff together. Just because
some is good does not mean more is better. If you find something
that makes you smarter, increases alertness, don’t dump a bunch
of extra stuff on top of that. Usually keeping things pretty simple
and clean and kinda staying in one track is a better way to go and
if you find that TianChi is something that works for you in the
morning for example to increase your alertness or whatever, I
wouldn’t mix it with BulletProof coffee and then you know, throw
whatever – Alpha Brain or Aniracetam or whatever in there. I
mean like just like pick your poison and stick to it. If you wanna
rotate stuff throughout the year like I talked about this a couple of
podcasts ago like testosterone supporting blends like herbal
testosterone blends, don’t mix a bunch of different blends
together and assume that just because some is good, more is
better. If you’re gonna use a supplement, you know, just like take
one and yeah, I mean cause honestly like in this era, there are a
ton of different things out there and frankly, a lot of them work
but that doesn’t mean that you use them all at once so….
Brock: That is good advice.
Ben: That’s right. We’re chockfull of it today.
Erin: Hey Ben, this is Erin from Maryland. I’m a registered dietician
and I work in integrated and functional medicine. I really believe
in the value of a balance diet but I can also appreciate the support
of supplementation. What do you know about isotonic
supplements? I’m trying to figure out the most ideal method to
enhance the nutritional status of my clients. The science looks
great but I can’t find any solid clinical trials to show its benefit.
Any help you have on this would be great. Thanks so much. I love
Brock: Isotonic supplements.
Brock: That sounds like a pure med scheme.
Ben: It sounds super scientific.
Brock: It does.
Ben: It sounds like a pyramid.
Brock: It sounds not like a scheme but one of those what do they call it?
The multi-level marketing thingies?
Ben: A lot of multi-level marketing companies kind of base their
compounds on this idea behind isotonic supplements. So they’re
supplements that are usually in liquid form with the idea being….
Brock: Smoothie form?
Ben: That the liquid, that the vitamins are mixed in have the same
concentration as body liquids like blood and saliva specifically.
And so if the substance that is dissolved in this solution is isotonic
versus being hypertonic or hypotonic, then the isotonic
supplement would be readily absorbed and there is actually a
company, I think it’s based out in the States called Isotonics which
is as the name fittingly implies, isotonic supplements, isotonic
vitamins. There is really not any studies that I am aware of that
show that isotonic supplements are any better absorbed than any
other kind of pills or supplements that you might swallow so….
Brock: Unless you inject them directly into a vein.
Ben: Unless you inject them directly into a vein. And you know what, I
actually have got IV cocktails of supplements like multivitamin IV
cocktail before and….
Brock: Were you super hangover?
Ben: You feel like a million bucks.
Brock: Is it a banana bag?
Ben: It feels really good but of course, it’s also a pain in the butt ‘cause
you have to, obviously give yourself an IV. There are a bunch, kind
of in the biohacking community, there are a bunch of alternative
nutrition supplement delivery mechanisms that are kinda being
explored and developed and I think are really going to replace our
traditional use right now of just like popping pills and capsules. So
like now, you’ve got transdermal delivery and transdermal
patches and you know, it relates to the whole concept of doing
something like you know, transdemal magnesium oil for example
but taking that to a whole different level in terms of like targeted
Brock: So transdermal means through the skin?
Ben: Through the skin and then sublinguals….
Brock: Put it on your arm or your leg or something like that.
Ben: Yeah. Exactly. Sublingual tingksters, sublingual extracts, they go
directly sublingually into the blood stream, that’s another one.
Brock: Under the tongue.
Brock: For those who don’t speak Latin.
Ben: Exactly. Exactly. Nebulizers. Doctor Mark Sircus is big into like
nebulizing like magnesium and stuff like that. He’s a guy that’s
been on this podcast before. I think nebulizing with supplement.
Brock: That’s the thing that bubbles so much that it becomes some, like
an aerosol that you can breathe.
Ben: Exactly. And there’s another form called liposomal incapsulation
and that’s another one that you see popping out now in terms of….
Brock: So encapsulated in fat?
Ben: Yes, essentially. Usually like some kinda like a lecithin or
something along that lines and you get way way better absorption
and for stuff like that as well. And the issue is that most of those
methods they kinda like fly into the radar, they’re uncomfortable
or they’re hard to come by.
Ben: Expensive. But you know, biohackers, are really you kinda of like
the cutting edge of these stuff and that’s what a lot of them are
using now and there are entire communities online like forums
devoted to just like how to nebulize or make liposomes or do
transdermal delivery or just about every drug or compound and
cocktail that’s out there I mean, and honestly like for me, best case
scenario, I’d find out what I was deficient in, and then I’d get an
IV, you know, once a week that kinda gives my body what it needs
but I mean like, a big part of it for me, frankly is like, I just wanna
enjoy life a little bit and I always have to find that fine line
between better living through science or whatever and just kinda
like you know, unplugging and you know, the best times of my life
really are when I’m hiking down into the river with my kids and
swimming in the river and catching some bugs and coming home
and eating some wild salmon and having a glass of red wine and
it’s like, you know, the more shall we say, annoying days of my life
are when I’m doing like electrostimulation and then
experimenting with different supplements and doing all these
biohacking stuff, it’s like I don’t wanna give people the impression
that I necessarily endorse some kind of unnatural go way out of
your way living that you know, kinda takes your enjoyment out of
life ‘cause we talk about stuff like, even on this show, today, we’ve
talked about supplements a bunch, we’ve talked about
ingredients, we’ve talked about you know, strategies for better
living through science but I really want to emphasize to listeners,
the most important thing you can do is go out, enjoy nature, eat
real food, get some good sleep, don’t stress out your body too
much, and that’s where the big wins are and then like you know,
the little things are, you know, whatever, liposomal delivery of
your whole foods vitamin C versus synthetic vitamin C you know,
does it make sense what I’m saying?
Brock: Yeah, yeah. I totally, I feel like even just the last part, the last 20
minutes of the show we both came off as the guys who wake up in
the morning and meticulously start measuring things out and like,
that’s not true at all and this morning, I had a cup of coffee and
went out for a run and came back and ate a banana, a very simple
Brock: Finding those times to test things out and see how much better
you can feel or if you do feel any better when you do something
slightly different is also part of the life, the life that I’ve chosen I
Ben: Yeah, exactly and I mean, you know, same thing for me. I got up
this morning, I made myself a little cup of coffee and I went out in
the garden and opened up my computer and wrote an article
while I was sitting in my garden and you know, I frankly haven’t
had any breakfast or popped any supplements, you know, that’s
what, 11AM in the morning and you know I, it’s just like you
know, I don’t want listeners to think that we necessarily endorse
living your life in this 24/7 like biohacking mode. It’s just a matter
of picking the stuff that works for you and choosing the stuff that
enhances your goals but not going overboard with it and you
know, you can also ruin life by worrying about this stuff too much
so there you go.
Brock: Drive yourself into a state of craziness.
Ben: Preach it. Preach it. Cool, what do we got? One more question and
then a little giveaway for a listener? Alright let’s do it.
John: Hey Ben, love the podcast, I’m a big fan. I’ve got a question for
you about propecia, the hair loss drug. I took that everyday for
about 9 years until I learned that it disrupted my hormonal
balance quite a bit, now I have very low testosterone and high
estrodial. I went off a bit about 2 years ago and I definitely have a
more balanced hormonal profile but I’m wondering of this is
something that could be affecting me long term. And if there are
any steps that I should be taking to further balance my hormones,
increase testosterone, etcetera, given that I took the drug for so
long. Love the podcast and hope you answer this. Thanks. Bye.
Brock: I like to say propecia.
Ben: Don’t we have a post on the album about hair loss?
Brock: We do, yeah. If you go to iTunes and look for Ben Greenfield
Fitness Top Hits Volume 1, you can download a whole big thing
about hair loss. I guess, like a whole 10 minutes long and it’s only
Ben: Yeah it is what is it, it’s like the natural way…. The Best Natural
Ways to Stop Hair Loss.
Ben: So first of all, go download that and listen to that John. When it
comes to propecia and hair loss drugs, yeah. Big issue. I mean, the
way that these things work is they’re anti-androgenic drugs so
normally, you’ve got this enzyme that converts testosterone into
what’s called dihydrotestosterone or DHT. Now DHT is some
pretty potent stuff. It’s super critical for like your libido and your
sex drive and the maintenance of genital tissue structure or more
specifically the size of your balls. It’s responsible for seminal fluid
production, for keeping estrogen levels in check so you don’t get
man boobs or bitch tits or whatever else you wanna call them. You
know, DHT is even responsible….
Brock: How about gynecomastia?
Ben: There you go, gynecomastia. Thank you for using a polite term
Brock: Bitch tits.
Ben: Mental clarity, mental function, like production of
neurotransmitters like DHT is some potent, pretty cool stuff. And
you effectively switched it off when you start using propecia or
finasteride or any of these anti-androgenic drugs that are
designed to inhibit hair loss because that’s kind of the issue when
you block the conversion of testosterone to DHT. It can actually
you know, cause you to elevate your testosterone levels, at least
your total testosterone levels, not necessarily your free bioactive
testosterone but at least your total testosterone levels. And that
can keep you from losing your hair a little bit but it goes hand in
hand with like prostate cell apoptosis which is cell death of your
prostate gland. You know, shrink a jig off your prostate and it
reduces nitric oxide synthase so your erections aren’t as good and
then you know, like I mentioned, you get gynecomastia, you get
depression because you’re not producing neurotransmitters quite
as well and essentially, creates this pretty nasty downstream side
effects that you know, go hand in hand with having a nice head of
hair but you know, nice head of hair and really small balls.
Brock: And huge boobs.
Ben: That’s right. And big boobs. So you know, first of all, you know,
the first thing I wanna say is I really don’t think that hair loss is
that big of a deal. I mean I’m one to talk 'cause I know I got a full
head of hair whatever but I mean….
Brock: Yeah, speaking of somebody who’s definitely thinning and
receding, it’s not definitely that big of a deal like you find a hair
cut that works and you roll with it.
Ben: Bald is the new sexy. I mean freakin’ bickett. Don’t worry too
much about. First of all, but let’s you know, you’ve taken the drug,
you’ve experienced the side effects. I mean, I would be first of all,
if you’re on the drug, I would be titrating yourself out of propecia.
And titrating yourself off of anything, let’s say you’re addicted to
sleep drugs like Valium or you’re addicted to, not addicted to but
using propecia or whatever and you wanna limit some of the side
effects that happen when you get yourself off of a drug like that
and limit some of the shock effects that can happen to your
endocrine system, you wean yourself off over a several week
period of time so you could start with let’s say, you know, a full
pill is 1 milligram. So you reduce the dosage to 0.5 milligrams or
half a pill and then you go down to a quarter pill, and then an
eight of a pill and then a sixteenth of a pill and it’s just every few
days like every other day or so, whatever, every 3rd day, 5th day, 7th
day, you’re bringing that down until you’re no longer taking that
drug at a certain point so that would be one of the things that I
would seriously consider doing if you’re taking one of these hair
loss inhibiting drugs. I would also, at the same time, consider
kinda looking into restoring proper hormonal function as you are
getting off propecia, as you’re trying to, you know as John is
trying to mitigate the damage that propecia caused so I would
make sure you’ve got adequate hormonal and steroid precursors
on-board so you know, make sure you’re getting adequate vitamin
d and sunlight exposure, make sure you’re getting adequate fatty
acid, you know, you could even throw in like a cod liver oil or a
good fish oil or something like that. Some other really really good
libido-supporting and testosterone-supporting foods that I like
are Brazil nuts. Big fan of grass-fed beef, big fan of shellfish, you
know, for the zinc. And then, you know, as we mentioned a couple
of weeks ago, there are some really good herbal mixes out there,
you know, like Tribulus and Maca, Nettle and Fenugreek and go
back and listen to the podcast episode that we did on my 3 top
recommended testosterone supplement compounds. I’ll put a big
list on the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/249 that
John can look at when it comes to you know, getting testosterone
levels back up if you found that you do have low. It wouldn’t be
low total testosterone that you’d have if you’re taking propecia
because frankly it increases testosterone because it inhibits the
conversion of testosterone to DHT. What it does do is it lowers
free and bio-available testosterone and more of that total
testosterone that you produce gets converted into estrogen which
is why you get the man boobs and kinda like the weight gain and
stuff like that. So there are what are called aromatase inhibitors
out there as well. 2 of the more popular ones are myomin and
there’s another one called chrysin that can actually decrease the
over-aromatization of testosterone into estrogens. So I’ll put some
pretty big links in the show notes for you on all this stuff John so
you can go check that out but yeah, I mean you wanna titrate
yourself off and if you’re listening and you’re in propecia, I
recommend you getting off it. Probably the number 1 website that
I would recommend to you that has the most comprehensive
amount of information on it about dealing with like finasteride or
propecia-induced side effects would be a website called
allthingsmale.com. that’s m-a-l-e not m-a-i-l. There’s probably a
website called allthingsmail.com where you can put your mail on
hold during your vacation. But check out allthingsmale.com. That
would be one that I’d look into as well and we’ll link to all that
stuff in the show notes for you so but yeah man, ultimately, and
like I said, bald is the new sexy. Just let that hair go. It’s not a big
Brock: All right. Well, speaking of letting things go, before we let the
people go I think we need to hear a review from iTunes.
Brock: Don’t forget if you leave a review on iTunes and it catches Ben’s
attention, and you hear it read on the podcast, and you send an
email, man that’s a lot of steps, to email@example.com,
Ben will send you some crazy crap that he finds kicking around
Ben: That’s right. And I think that what I’m gonna send to Teddy V,
Teddy V, I’ve got some super coffee drops for you. I don’t know if
you’ve tried super coffee drops but they’re made by Living Fuel
and you put a few drops of them into like a cup of hot water or a
nice glass of ice water and it tastes like coffee, a chockfull
antioxidant but you can skip the step of actually making yourself a
cup of coffee if you don’t have time to do that.
Brock: Perfect for camping.
Ben: It’s called Super Coffee.
Brock: I like it.
Ben: Here’s Ted’s review. Teddy V’s review over on iTunes. It’s called
“Become the Smartest Person in the Room” and he gave us 5
stars. 5 freakin’ stars.
Ben: He says you will love listening to the Ben Greenfield Fitness
Podcast. You will learn, you will laugh, and occasionally you
would say to yourself, no way. Your knowledge on health and
fitness will surpass all of your friends’. Just think about the
number of things we accepted as fact 10 years ago such as low-fat
is the way to lose weight that we now know is the exact opposite.
Ben stays on top of this latest research and shares his findings in
his podcast. Very informational and on top of that, you will have
things to say at that next dinner party or happy hour. So for all of
you who are speechless at parties and wallflowers, and usually
tend to leave cocktail parties early because you’re bored and no
one is listening to you, if you listen to the Ben Greenfield Fitness
podcast, you will all of a sudden become the life of the party.
Brock: You can rick people with stories of before you were gluten-free,
how you walked around in bloated diarrhea-haze but now you feel
Brock: I bet everybody loves to hear about that.
Ben: No hair but you feel great. So Teddy V, if you wrote that review,
email me, firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m gonna give you a
little bottle of Super Coffee out your way. And remember you can
leave a review on iTunes.
Brock: Super Coffee.
Ben: You can also go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/love and share the
love and then also, if you are a listener in London, drop me a line.
email@example.com and let’s plan on having a super
duper London meet up, maybe doing a clinic, having some fun,
drinking some non-toxic beer and just hanging out at a gastro-pub
Brock: Running laps around Stonehenge.
Ben: That’s right. We’ll go run some laps around Stonehenge. Let’s do
it. ‘Cause they do that in the UK.
Brock: They love it.
Ben: As the English people do so. Alright.
Brock: We’ve offended all our English listeners.
Ben: That’s right. We better quit offending out international listeners
and head out. Alright, so checkout bengreenfieldfitness.com/249
and yeah, over and out.