Episode #204 – Full Transcript

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Podcast #204 from:  https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2012/08/episode-204-how-to-modify-your-exercise-and-nutrition-as-you-get-older/


Introduction:  In today’s Podcast: How To Modify Your Exercise And Nutrition As You Get Older.  Also, Healing A Broken Foot, Dealing With An Eating And/Or Exercise Disorder, Post Workout Nausea, Using The Most Fit Suspension System, Does Your Body Self-Limit, Healing Your Gut After Radiation Therapy, Ammonia In Your Sweat, and Can Green Coffee Bean Extract Hurt Your Workouts?

Brock:  Hey everybody.  Welcome to another episode of the BenGreenfieldFitness podcast.  I’m Brock and of course we couldn’t do the show without him.  Ben is here too.

Ben:  And I’m sitting very straight right now.

Brock:  Nice.  Why so erect?

Ben:  I’m wearing Intelliskin.

Brock:  What?

Ben:  Intelliskin.  It’s this special t-shirt that makes you have really good posture.  It’s embedded with what’s called postureCue technology.  And you put it on.  You zip it up.

Brock:  And it shocks you every time you try to slouch.

Ben:  No.  It’s got this fabric in it that’s cool.  It’s like a compression gear for your upper body.   But it also got this ribbed posture things built into it.

Brock:  So, does it get rigid so you can’t slouch?  Does it hold you in place?  Or is it just more of the squeezing that reminds you to sit up?

Ben:  It’s kind of a little bit of both I think.  But considering that I usually just podcast in my boxers, I feel like I’m dressed up right now.

Brock:  I’m podcasting in toque and mits at a park right now because I’m in Edmonton, Alberta way up North.

Ben:  That’s pretty cold.

Brock:  It’s freezing in here.  It’s ridiculous. Why do people live here?

Ben:  I don’t know.  What are you doing in Edmonton?

Brock:  My mom’s here.

Ben:  Okay.

Brock:  And my sister and my niece and nephew and all the rest of the crazy family.

Ben:  I’m coming to Canada next week.

Brock:  Oh yes, for Ironman.

Ben:  Yes.  I’ve got some athletes that I’m coaching in Ironman Canada.  So, I may come up there.  So, any of our listeners who are up there in Penticton, that’s the other side of the country from Edmonton.  But I’ll be up there doing the Canadian thing.

Brock:  Awesome.  I’ll make sure you eat your fill of poutine.

Ben:  I will.  And I’ll get my hands on some of that kokanee.  I just got back from the Ancestor Hall symposium.

Brock:  Was that in Washington?

Ben:  It was in Boston at Harvard.

Brock:  Cool.

Ben:  Yes.  So, I got to pretend to be a college student for a few days.

Brock:  So, did you get some audio stuff of anything that you’re going to put on the site or podcast? No?

Ben:  No, it was too busy.  But I hooked up with some really cool people who I’m going to get on for interviews.  There are some folks who have been on before and also some new people.  So, there’s going to be some really good stuff coming forward on the podcast from very progressive thinkers who I’ve met over there in the fields of everything.  It was from affordable genetic testing to more stuff on higher intensity training in a ketogenic or low carbohydrate state.  I just hooked up with a lot of cool people.  So, I will certainly be bringing some good interviews here coming down the pipeline.

Brock:  Very cool.

Ben:  Yes.  So, what do you think?

Brock:  Kick it in the butt.


News Flashes:

Brock:  Alright, Twitter.com/BenGreenfiled and of course the Google+ link that is impossible to read out.  But just go to the website and you can just follow the links there.  It’s always the place to find all kinds of really cool and interesting new stories and a lot of studies.  So, what do you want to highlight this week?

Ben:  There are so many things going on right now in research that I wanted to mention.  But I’ll just go through a few things today.  One was tweet that I put out about a good reason for all you hot moms out there to drink more wine.  And this was actually a study that was done and appeared in the Journal of Menopause.  It’s called moderate alcohol intake lowers biochemical markers and bone turnover in post-menopausal women.  And essentially, what it found out was that women who were drinking the equivalent of a glass of wine a day actually had decreased markers of bone turnover.  And there were possible cellular mechanisms going on for increased bone density.  And that would be considered moderate alcohol consumption.  It’s only one glass of wine a day.  But I know that there are a lot of healthy post-menopausal women out there enjoying their nightly glass of wine.  And I certainly see no reason to give that up.

Brock:  So, bone turnover would be sort of regeneration like the sloughing off of some cells and the regeneration.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Okay.  And that’s a good healthy thing to have happen.

Ben:  Yes.  You would basically see an increased activity of osteoblast which is your bone building cell.

Brock:  Beautiful.

Ben:  Yes.  So, to back that cabernet or whatever your weapon of choice is ladies.

Brock:  I like a nice Shiraz if you’re buying.

Ben:  And Brock of course is post-menopausal.

Brock:  Of course.

Ben:  Another one that I noted was a study on comparing different fats and their ability to produce appetite satiation.  Or, it’s specifically to increase levels of the hormones that are responsible for making us less hungry and decrease the levels of our hunger hormones like ghrelin for example.  And so, this study which incidentally was done on a rodent.  So, you always have to take it with a grain of salt.  But it looked at effects of saturated fat.  So, it’s basically like butter.  Rodents are eating sticks of butter, olive oil which basically is monounsaturated fat, fish oil and then soy bean oil.  And they basically compare these different fats to see which ones stabilize the appetite.  And I would’ve thought that butter would be the most satiating fat.

Brock:  Because it’s an animal fat.

Ben:  Yes.  And I mean that’s butter.

Brock:  Yes.  It’s delicious and wonderful.

Ben:  Yes and incredibly filling.  But it turned out that fish oil and olive oil beat out the butter and also beat out the soy bean.  So, it’s basically fish oil and olive oil and then butter and then soy beans.  So, for those people who want to snack on forms of fat that are going to satiate the appetite, they could be doing some things that are soaked in olive oil or macadamia oil.  Having some salmon or some fish oil or some cod liver oil or even artichoke oil is similar to an olive oil too.  And it’s in terms of its biochemistry.   It’s all going to be better than choosing a saturated fat like coconut oil or butter.

Brock:  That’s very cool.  Next time I’m hungry, I’m going to have a tablespoon of olive oil.

Ben:  I’m drinking it right now.

Brock:  Just a big glass.

Ben:  That’s why my voice sounds so smooth and silky.  It’s my secret.  So, another interesting study came out on dietary total antioxidant capacity and metabolic syndrome.  So, metabolic syndrome is resistance to insulin and high blood sugars and all of the different things that go on metabolically that increase your risk of chronic disease and dying a horrible painful death.  Basically, high dietary antioxidant intakes were shown to have a favorable effect on metabolic disorders in this study.  It’s no surprise I’m sure to folks that having your antioxidants actually helps out quite a bit.  But you don’t have to go out and buy a fancy bottle of side juice of MonaVie or something like that to get what you need.  This study shows in terms of having this enormous effect on risk of disease and actually about a 38 percent decrease in the risk of obesity.  Basically, the total antioxidants consumed were the equivalent of a handful of nuts and a piece of fruit.

Brock:  Wow.

Ben:  So, you don’t have to go out of your way to do high dose antioxidants.

Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  Granted there maybe a greater need for that among folks who are really beating up their bodies quite a bit like athletes and highly active individuals.  But it’s interesting how much of an effect just a handful of nuts and a piece of fruit a day can have.

Brock:  That’s fantastic.


Ben:  And then finally, cow’s milk vs. goat’s milk.  There was an interesting comparison on estrone and estradiol levels in people who were consuming cow’s milk vs. goat’s milk.  And it was found that dairy from cow’s milk contained much higher levels of estrogen compared to goat milk.  So, for anybody who’s concerned with limiting their estrogen intake, goat milk is definitely a better dietary choice if you’re concerned like guys for man-boobs or women for estrogen dominance for example.  Doing dairy on a daily basis from commercial diary sources, it’s probably not the best idea.  And of course this was a study on commercial dairy sources.  It didn’t look at things like raw organic grass-fed cows or anything less than simply the average grocery store milk.  But regardless, it’s interesting to know for people.

Brock:  Yes.  So, it’s still nowhere near the effect that soy milk would have.

Ben:  I would be interested to see that study because soy milk does have a very profound effect on estrogen levels.

Brock:  Yes.  So, they didn’t have that as part of the study though.

Ben:  Yes.  I haven’t seen commercial dairy vs. soy milk study.  But ultimately, there’s one more point for the goat.

Brock:  Go goats.  So, I just have one quick question.  And I want to bring this up because it was all over the news here in Canada.  And I’m assuming because it was actually a British study.  It was probably all over the world.  But they were headlines like crazy over the last two days.  It was saying that egg yolks were as dangerous as smoking in terms of cardiovascular disease.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Did you see that?

Ben:  Well, my twitter feed was blown up this morning when I woke up.  People were asking about it.  That study didn’t control for dietary factors like sugar consumption, grain consumption, and vegetable oil consumption.  All the things that are capable of oxidizing cholesterol, oxidizing the cholesterol that you might get from an egg yolk.  And making it into the small oxidized low density lipoprotein cholesterol particles that are more likely to dig into your arterial wall and increase your risk of atherosclerosis.  It didn’t look at any of that.  And so certainly, if you’re eating a high fat diet or if you’re eating a lot of eggs especially with yolks intact, it’s very prudent to limit your vegetable intake.  Not cooking those bad boys in canola oil or margarine or something like that.  It’s also important to be limiting your sugar intake.  That means you don’t have a glass of orange juice with your eggs and also your grain intake.  You avoid having grains with toast.  So, all these type of things were not controlled for in that study.  So, for people out there who are doing a three egg omelet in the morning with spinach and some goat cheese and cooking that in butter or coconut oil or ghee or something like that.  There’s really not much to be concerned about here.

Brock:  Awesome.  That's what I thought.  I thought you should get it right from the man and let everybody know because it seemed to be really causing a stir on Twitter and Facebook and stuff.

Ben:  Yes.  And it’s one of my favorite things in the morning.  It’s to stand up in the kitchen and poaching my egg and pulling on my cigarette.

Brock:  Yes.


Special Announcements:

Brock:  Okay.  So, on BenGreenfieldFitness.com this week, there was a post and little video where you went through all the results of your blood test and your urine test and saliva test and everything from WellnessFx.  That’s pretty cool.  It’s pretty neat the way you can track it over time too.

Ben:  It’s so easy to do.  And for those of you who didn’t check out that post, it was basically a crash course on finding out what’s happening inside your body.  The post is still up over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com.  You can go check it out.  I walk you through how to do things like allergy testing for certain proteins that you might be allergic to.  It teaches you how to get a full-on blood panel and do it easily without having to guess on the lab results.  And you can use something like the WellnessFx dashboard to really be able to see what’s going on.  And you are able to ask online doctors questions about what you’re seeing.  And then I also went into a little bit about hormones but also a little bit about blood typing and secretor typing.  It’s something that I haven’t really done myself much.  But I did get it done.  I just wanted to look into as many parameters as possible.  And there will be a part two because I’m also doing some nutrient analysis, some mineral test, and also genetic testing.  And so, I’ll put all that up in a part two here sometime in the next month or so.  But I would definitely go through and read that post that I did.  Self-quantification is very easy to do.  And it’s actually very affordable now.  I would definitely recommend that you check out that post over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com.

And the other thing that I wanted to mention to folks was that for people living in Spokane or Coeur d’Alene area.  My wife and I will be teaching a class on lacto-fermentation and how to make your own probiotic-rich foods.  That’s going to be on August 23rd which is a Thursday.  It’s in the evening.  It’s6:30pm over at Pilgrims Market.  So, we’ll be really geeking out on making yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, and all the does and don’ts when it comes to home grown bacteria.

Brock:  Cool.  And it’s so much easier and so much better to get your probiotics from fermented sources rather than pills.  It’s because you’d have to take so many pills to get the trillions of bacteria you get from a serving of a well-made yogurt or kefir or any of those kinds of things.

Ben:  I’d take sauerkraut on a nice sausage any day over a probiotic pill.  Yes, absolutely.  I would like to officially say that this is a last call for you to go to party in Thailand this winter with me, Brock, and a ton of other folks.

Brock:  Party!

Ben:  I don’t know how to say party in Thai.  But it’s going to be a ton of fun.  We’re doing two triathlons over there.  Don’t worry if you try to register for the Laguna-Phuket Triathlon.  I can get you into that even if it appears to be full if you’re going with our group.  It’s going to be fantastic time.  We’ll put a link in the show notes where you can go check out the full itinerary of everything that we’re doing.  But you only live once.  And this is the opportunity of a lifetime to go have a lot of fun and do it in a very cool place.  So, this is the last call.  We’re pretty much shutting this thing down over the next week in terms of letting anybody else in.  There’s that and you can check out the link to that in the show notes.  And finally, this podcast is brought to you of course by AudiblePodcast.com/Ben.  It’s actually brought to you by AudiblePodcast.com.  But if you go to AudiblePodcast.com/Ben, Brock, what cool things do people get?

Brock:  Well, you get a free book when you first signed up.  So, if you’re already a member, you don’t get that.  But when you sign up, you get a free download.  So, you can really pick any book that you want.  And I’d just search through for the longest one.  You can actually sort by length and get the complete works of William Shakespeare.

Ben:  So, quality doesn’t matter at all to Brock.

Brock:  It doesn’t matter.  Get the 50 Shades of Grey the extended version.

Ben:  That would be interesting.

Brock:  Yes.  I hope that that doesn’t exist.

Ben:  Yes.  50 Shades of Grey, I’m going to listen to that in the car with my kids.  We’re going to go to a fishing trip this weekend.


Brock:  Perfect.

Ben:  We’ll be listening to 50 Shades of Grey.  I hear it’s really good.

Brock:  Daddy, what’s a nipple?

Ben:  It’s the top ranked book in Audible.  You could get 50 Shades of Grey.

Brock:  I think there are over 100,000 audio books to choose from.  And I noticed that there’s actually the Danny Dryer, the chi or gi running guru has both the running and the walking book up there.  And they’re actually read by him which I thought was pretty cool.  It’s because he’s actually got a very soothing voice.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  He’s a very relaxed fellow.

Ben:  Yes.  So, you could listen to The Chi of Walking and The Chi of Running.  Those are both really good books.  And Danny has been on this podcast.  And if you’re interested in getting your biomechanics styled in, that would be great because you could listen to it while running.  So, they’re very cool.  So, check out AudiblePodcast.com/Ben.

Listener Q and A:

Brock:  Okay everybody.  Thanks for doing all the awesome questions.  As usual, there are tons and tons rolling in.  And we of course have the big backlog.  So, don’t freak out if you don’t hear your question right away.  It’s in the queue.  And it’ll likely show up in the next few weeks.  But let’s start with our first audio question from Tony.

Tony:  Hi Ben and Brock.  My name is Tony.  I have a question.  I recently broke a bone in my foot.  And I’m looking for your advice Ben on both the nutritional side and the supplement side to recover from this injury.  And also, any advice you have on ways to stay cardiovascularly fit while I’m on crutches for the next eight weeks.  So, any advice that you have, I’d really appreciate it.  And I really enjoy the podcast and keep up your good work.  Thanks guys and goodbye.

Brock:  I think staying fit while in crutches is probably the most difficult part.

Ben:  Yes.  Have you ever been on crutches?

Brock:  I have, yes.  It’s terrible.  Not only do you have to limit moving around but there’s armpit pain.  I remember being quite upset.

Ben:  Chafing in the armpits sucks.  It’s just a pain.  But there are certainly things that you can do to stay fit while you’re on crutches and also touch on that bone healing component too.  It’s just to help you speed things up because there are some definite things you can do to speed up bone healing.  As far as staying active and maintaining your cardiovascular fitness when you’re on crutches, if you’re not going to be able to use water for fitness.  We’ve talked about it on the podcast as being a definite option for many soft tissue and bone injuries.  It depends if you’re on a cast whether you’re able to perform aquatic therapy.  Or you’re just limited to land-based exercises.  But let’s say that you’re not able to get in the water and do any swimming or aqua jogging or anything like that.  One of the things that I really like and that I’ve used many times when I’ve been injured in the lower body are those upper arm ergometers at the gym.  Have you ever seen those?

Brock:  Yes.  They’re like riding a bicycle but with your hands.

Ben:  Yes.  They’re like riding a bicycle with your hands.  And you can get a fantastic workout on those.  Now, they’re boring as hell.  But if you are able to just do a quick workout like a Tabata set.  It means you go 20 seconds hard, ten seconds easy for about eight times through.  That thing can jack your heart rate up through the roof.

Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  And I’m a big of that.  And you can actually put that into a circuit.  For example, you can do an upper body training circuit on all the upper body machines.  It’s because sometimes free weights are obviously a little hard to deal with when you’re in crutches.  But you go through an upper body circuit of chest press, pull down, shoulder press, seated rows, and you do that minimal rest one exercise to the next.  And then you go for two to the ergometer.  You do a Tabata set on the arm ergometer.  And then you go back around to the beginning.  That’s a really great way to get a cardiovascular boost and also really work the upper body at the same time.  And of course, you can use your crutches themselves for cardiovascular exercise.  It’s going to be a little bit strenuous on your shoulders and arms.  But you can walk for 30 seconds or a minute.  And then you can take a little bit of a break.  And then you can do it again.  And you can certainly use the crutches as part of your aerobic routine as well.  Those are some of the ideas that come to mind when it comes to ways that you can stay fit.  But the arm ergometer is something I swear by when it comes to that upper body fitness and cardiovascular capacity.


Brock:  Tony didn’t mention if he’s in a cast or not because that would definitely influence the amount of stuff that you can do.  It’s not only in the gym but also like what you said staying out of the water if you’ve got a cast on you and be able to do the aqua jogging.  And you also wouldn’t want to have sweat just pouring down into your cast.

Ben:  Yes.  And if you go over, I did a full-on podcast on all the different things you can do in the water to stay fit.  That’s over at GetFitGuy.QuickandDirtyTips.com.  So, check that out if you are able to get into the water Tony.  And then as far as bone healing, there are some of the better therapeutic modalities for bone healing that I’ve seen.  There are studies that have been done on the effects of ultrasound or ultrasonic waves on bone healing and also low level cold laser therapy.  And both of those have been looked at in studies in terms of their ability to show new bone formation or to vascularize the connective tissue.  That helps the bone to heal.  And they’ve both shown pretty good results.  You can access a low level cold laser therapy or ultrasound or ultrasonic waves at just about any physical therapist.  Many alternative medical practitioners have this in their clinics as well.  But when used properly, they can certainly help with bone healing.  So, that’s one thing that I would look into for sure.

If you want to get into a clinic, it would be low level therapy or a pulse ultrasound.  In terms of supplements that you could use, the first thing that I would do is of course make sure that you’re eating lots of foods.  Foods that is rich in the minerals that are going to help you build bone.  It must be high in calcium or magnesium.  As well as doing trace mineral supplements, you can get liquid trace minerals.  Those are important as well.  Examples of foods that you would want to include would be if you can tolerate them from a gastrointestinal standpoint, milk and dairy products.  It’s preferably in their raw organic versions.  Sardines are good.  I like any of the dark leafy green vegetables, bok choy, kale, colored mustard greens, and turnip greens.  Any of those are really great for bone health.  As far as supplements, there’s a supplement that I’ve seen with actual research that have shown to be efficacious for bone density and bone healing is lactoferrin.  That’s a component of Capraflex which I’ve talked about before on the show.  I’ll put a link to Capraflex in the show notes.  But it’s a bone and joint formula. And one of the things that are in it is lactoferrin.  And I won’t geek out too long on lactoferrin because I’ve talked about it many times before on the show.  But it’s basically a protein.  It’s what’s called a glycoprotein.  And one of the things that it can do in addition to having a good anti-microbial activity and affecting your immune system is to really help with bone turnover.  It’s basically decreasing what’s called resorption of bone and increasing formation of bone.  And so, I’m a big fan of lactoferrin for any connective tissue and bone injuries.  And that’d be a reason to use something like Capraflex anywhere from nine to 12 of those a day can definitely help out.  If I broke a bone, I would be hunting down cold laser and ultrasound combining that with some Capraflex.  And then, I’ll be staying fit using some of the things that I’ve just mentioned.

Brock:  Alright.  Let’s move on to the next audio question from Chuck then.


Chuck:  Hey Ben, this is Chuck.  And first off, thanks for all the help that you’ve given me over the years.  It’s been really beneficial.  And I’ve got a little bit of a different question this time.  I have been dealing with eating disorders in a number of years.  And figured upon myself to check back into an in-patient facility where I currently am.  And I wanted to see of course we’re eating all meals here.  Exercise is not allowed and frowned upon until you’re more weight restored.  But I wonder if you’ve got any advice on ways that, just feel like all the weight is going directly to my stomach.  And whether or not I have a disorder by it, I would just like to see it distribute more evenly or anything that I could do that wouldn’t be risking my success of getting rid of eating disorder once and for all.  I just want to be as healthy as possible and maybe make the weight distribute more evenly and entirely fat.  So, I would love any feedback or information you have.  And thanks a lot man.  I appreciate it.  Thank you.

Brock:  When I first listened to Chuck’s question, it’s a bit of a delicate situation when you’ve checked yourself into a program like he has.  That’s an awesome step.  It’s fantastic Chuck.  I applaud you for taking the big step.  And you’ve got to stick with it.  You’ll do great.

Ben:  Yes.  That’s certainly true.  I don’t really, from my understanding, think that a lot of eating disorder clinic are taking into account the fact that many people having disorders.  They also tend to have some type of exercise disorder.  It means that a lot of self-definition is done through over involvement in exercise activity or obsession with body image or obsession with the amount of exercise that’s been done.  There certainly is a clinically defined exercise addiction whether it’d be exercise bulimia, exercise anorexia.  But it’s similar to eating disorder.  It’s a potentially unhealthy form of weight control.  And you tend to see a lot of the similar things you see in anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa which would be obsessive concerns about being fat and body dissatisfaction.  And it’s also binging on exercise.  Unfortunately, some of these things aren’t controlled for in eating disorder clinic.  In terms of what the features of an activity disorder would be, it’d be like being very uncomfortable resting or relaxing.  So, it always has to maintain a high level activity.  And then it’s depending on that activity to define yourself, to stabilize your mood, or to make you feel good about yourself.  Typically, you tend to begin to skip out on important things like work and family events and etc. to exercise.  And you tend to get a lot of physiologic effects of deprivation like mood disorder and getting really grumpy.  And you get really depressed when you’re not able to actually do as much exercise as you think that you should do.

I know that many of the things that I’m going over sounds like your typical extremely active person.  Maybe it’s your typical triathlete or something like that.  And I do think that many of us and I know that I myself have been guilty of this.  If we do walk that fine line between exercising to the point that we’re staying healthy and we’re helping ourselves to live longer.  And we’re fulfilling a need for competition.  And then we’re exercising because we feel that we have to in order to feel good about ourselves or in order to define us.  And when you get into a position where you don’t have control over the foods that you’re eating and maybe you don’t have access to the type of exercise that you’ve been doing in the past.  It can certainly be disturbing.  I can understand where Chuck’s at.  I don’t know the food that Chuck is eating in the clinic that he’s at.  It can be a feeling of loss of control when you’re not able to eat what you want to eat.  And you also maybe not able to do all the exercise that you want to do.  And what’s really important to understand is that in the same way that being in a position where you don’t have control.  And you’re in a position where there are people helping you to realize that food or an obsession with food or anything of nature doesn’t have to define you.  Getting to a position where you’re cut off from being able to engage in excessive activity can be a really good way to break that cycle of being obsessed with exercise.  Or having an activity disorder and feeling like you always have to work out.

And so, if I were in Chuck’s shoes, what I would do is look at this as an opportunity to redefine the way that you think about activity and exercise.  And maybe you need to experiment seeing how little you can get away with and still feel okay about the way that you look.  Or the way that your body feels because I guarantee you are your worst critic.  We all tend to think we’re getting fat when we’re not able to exercise as much as we want to.  But a lot of times, we’re the only person that sees that.  So, one of the things that I try Chuck is do something like 10 or 15 minutes of heavy weight lifting.  I don’t know if you have access to a gym or not.  But it’s just a little bit.  It’s just to make you feel good and then that’s it.  The other thing you can try if you don’t have access to a gym is doing 100 push-ups or 100 squats at the end of the day.  It’s just enough to give you some of that activity and a little bit of those endorphins.  And then you eat healthy.   You eat as much as you can that way that you’ve learned on this show.  You eat a high fat, moderate protein, lower carbohydrate appetite satiating diet.  And then you just rest, relax, and every once in a while you lift heavy stuff.  And I think that’d be a very good way to break the cycle.  It’s because I know that Chuck having written to the show before is a triathlete.  And he’s one of the chronic endurance folks.  So, you do tend to get that rat on a wheel mentality where you feel cut off if you neither walk or run or ride a bike or swim.  And so, I would use this as an opportunity in the same way that you’re breaking the eating disorder cycle to break the exercise cycle.  And you just let yourself chill out and do a little bit of heavy lifting.  And I commend you as well for taking action and getting into that clinic.


Brock:  And I want to reassure you too Chuck that every man in the world when we think we’ve put on weight or we have put on some weight.  We all feel that it went straight to our stomach.  And every woman in the world feels like it went to their butt and thighs.  As far as the distribution of weight goes, all of us feel the same way.  It always goes to the stomach because that’s where we focus on as a society.  It’s that we have to have a lean trim six pack stomach otherwise we’re not really fit.  Or we’re not really healthy.  But it’s just the universal feeling.  So, don’t stress out about it.  And you certainly don’t have to stand in front of a mirror and poke.  Don’t do anything like that because that’s what we all do.

Ben:  That’s right.  Just wear an intelliskin t-shirt like me.  It keeps everything sucked in.

Brock:  So, yes.  Keep that up Chuck and follow the directions of the folks at the clinic.  They know what they’re doing.  And there’s lots of time to go crazy later.  Okay.  Our next question and actually I think our next two questions come from Ben or multiple Ben’s.

Ben:  That could get confusing.

Brock:  Now we have three Ben’s on the show.

Ben:   Hey what’s up Ben and Brock.  This is Ben in Brooklyn again.  I love the podcast.  You guys answered my question in the past.  As always, I appreciate it.  This question is about post-workout nausea or light-headedness.  I usually train fasted in the morning because I don’t eat breakfast when I train around 11 or12 noon.  And then I bring a shake with me right to the gym.  So, in the locker room immediately post-workout after lifting, squatting, and push and pulls, etc. right in the locker room I’ll have a coconut water and whey protein shake that I make at home.  So, it’s small.  It’s only about 12 or 13 grams of protein and about 20 to 30 grams of carbohydrate.  And it’s small.  And I do only that because I know I’ll eat in about an hour or so.  Anyhow, after having the shake usually about 10 or 15 minutes I get pretty light-headed and almost nauseous.  That happens almost every single time.  It passes.  And then I eat lunch and I’m fine which is why I don’t worry too much about it.  But I’m wondering why this happens.  Is it some kind of hypoglycemia or something?  I don’t know.  So, that’s my question.  And thanks a whole lot.  And by the way, if I don’t have the shake, I’m fine.  So, I don’t think it’s the workout.  I think it’s the influx of those carbohydrates and that protein after the workout maybe.  Anyway, thanks a lot guys.  Goodbye.

Brock:  Okay.  It’s post-workout nausea.

Ben:  There are a few reasons that you could get light-headed or nauseous after a workout.  And it’s especially if you are training fasted.  It’s likely that you’re probably in a somewhat glycogen depleted state.  And so, the very first thing that you may be experiencing are rebound hypoglycemia.  That means that if you’re training fasted, your liver is going to step up glycogenolysis to breakdown some of the storage glycogen in the liver.  It’s so that you can mobilize that and use some of that blood glucose for energy.  Your muscles are going to breakdown some of their glycogen.  I don’t know how much you’re eating on a daily basis.  So, I don’t know how much storage muscle glycogen you’re walking around with.   But ultimately, you have all these hormonal effects within your body causing blood glucose to get driven up from your muscles or from your liver.  And then when you quit exercising, what happens is a lot of times the blood glucose can pretty rapidly drop.  And that can lead to a lot of this nausea or light-headedness.  And sometimes it can take a little bit from something like coconut water or especially the sugar that you could potentially derive from a whey protein shake to hit your blood stream.   So, it might just be some rebound hypoglycemia in which case there are a few things that you could do.  One would be the no-brainer is just don’t train in a fasted state anymore and have a little bit of pre-workout meal.

The other would be to if you are new to working out fasted.  Or if you’re new to perhaps something like a ketogenesis or low carbohydrate to get through the first couple of weeks of doing something like that.  And eventually, you begin to stabilize.  And you begin to feel less nausea or less light-headedness when you’re working out as your body becomes more fat-adapted.  The other thing that can happen and this goes hand-in-hand with what we’re just talking about like training in fasted state or maybe having fewer carbohydrates on board.  It’s that one of the main components of glycogen and storage carbohydrate in your body is that it does tend to hold a lot of sodium as well.  And so, when you’re burning through carbohydrates and when you don’t have many onboard, your blood pressure can rapidly drop from loss of sodium.  One of the other things that you could try prior to workout or during workout is to use sodium tablets like electrolyte pills.  I’ll just make sure you’re just salting your food and getting more salt in your diet to keep your blood pressure up.  And especially for people who again switch to a low carbohydrate high fat diet or a ketogenic diet.  One of the biggest mistakes that they make is they don’t begin to increase their sodium intake.  And they feel light-headed.  They feel dizzy.  They feel nauseous.  But it’s not due to lack of energy.  It’s due to a drop in blood pressure from lack of sodium.

Peter Attia who I actually interviewed on this podcast a few weeks ago, he and I were talking at the Ancestral Health Symposium.  He actually does chicken bouillon cubes.  And he’ll do things like fasting for 24 hours and go on a six hour bike ride.  And he’s just using high sodium intake.  And he’s using these two to four gram chicken bouillon cubes to get enough sodium to keep his blood pressure levels up.


Brock:  Is he just popping them in his mouth?

Ben:  I don’t know if he’s dissolving them in water and then popping them in his mouth.  I’m going to interview him next week.  So, we can go over some of the practical things that he’s doing and put it out on the podcast.  But he’s eating a lot of sodium.  And when you’re not taking in many carbohydrates or you’re exercising fasted, a lot of times that’s something that becomes necessary.  And then the other thing is if ten to 15 minutes after consuming a whey protein shake, you get dizzy or you get nauseous.  It’s possible that you may simply have a whey protein allergy.  And allergies to whey or allergies to casein are both fairly common.  I talked about in that recent post at BenGreenfieldFitness.com about an immunoglobulin test that I did.  It was from US Bio Tech.  I had my doctor write the requisition form.  I went in.  I got a blood test.  It’s called an IGA.  I had an IGE anti-body test.  And it essentially identifies proteins that can trigger the white blood cells in your body to create histamine in soft tissues.  And histamine can produce inflammation.  It can produce swelling.  And it can produce symptoms of allergies like nausea or light-headedness.  So, you could go get an immunoglobulin test.  Or you could simply try switching to a plant protein.  You can use the Living Protein mix of that’s a P in rice-protein blend for example.  And you can try something like that and see if a vegan protein blend gives you the same issues.  For me personally, I’m fine with a goat-based whey protein.  And I don’t do well with a cow-based whey protein.  So, those are some of the things that you could try.  I’d look into the protein issue.  I’d look into the sodium issue.  And then, I’d look into the hypoglycemia issue.

Brock:  The first thing I thought of when I read this question or heard the question was that when I have aspartame, I get light-headed and nauseous after that.  And I was wondering if maybe the whey protein that he’s using has some artificial sweetener that could be causing that as well.

Ben:  Yes.  Or maybe it’s got lots of Chinese food mixed into it.

Brock:  A lot of MSG.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Actually, that’s possible as funny as it is.

Ben:  Chunky general pao’s chicken whey protein powder.  But seriously, that’s a good point too.  A lot of those artificial sweeteners and MSG can be mildly neurotoxic.

Brock:  The other thing, when you talk Ben about doing a fasted workout, you generally say that it should be a light aerobic workout.  And it should be 20 minutes to an hour long.  The other Ben is talking about lifting and squatting and pushing and pulling and stuff.  So, it definitely sounds like it’s more of resistance training.  Could it have any effect on it?

Ben:  Yes.  And I know that I’ve said it in the past that you should, primarily for your fasted workouts, engage in lower volume or lower intensity aerobic exercise just because it’s less stressful.  And your body has less potential to create some immune system issues.  It has lots of potential to create some of these elevated levels of cortisol.  But if you look at this from an ancestral health or an evolutionary standpoint, there were certainly periods of time where the human body has been exposed for the past thousands of years.  And that’s having to go out and killing animals for food.  And they do so in a state where the body isn’t fed.  And so, I certainly think that it doesn’t go against human nature to roll out of bed unfed.  And you put your body through the rigors what it may have gone through like killing a deer for food.


Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  Granted that that can be stressful to the body.  But I’m not 100 percent against every once in a while like doing a hard weight training session or doing hard cardio session in a fasted state.  It’s as long as you understand that that’s stressful to the body.  And you shouldn’t do it all the time.  Remember that some stress can have this hormetic effect where you get increased cell turn over.  Your cells get rid of some garbage.  And you have a little bit of that lifespan increasing effect.  It’s just that more is not better.  Regardless, I wouldn’t be weight training intensely everyday in a fasted state.  And of course, this point out one of the reasons why it’s massively glycogen depleting.  And so, you do put yourself at a higher risk of experiencing some blah effects afterwards anytime you’re doing exercise in a fasted state.

Brock:  Alright.  Well, let’s bring another Ben into the mix here.

Ben:   Hi what’s up Ben and Brock?  I love the podcast.  This is Ben out in Brooklyn.  I’ve called before.  I always appreciate your input.  I have a question about the Most Fit Suspension Trainer that you mentioned in a prior podcast.  I just got news that I have to do a trip across the country.  I’m flying to California from New York.  And then I’m driving back from San Diego all the way to New York City.  And I figured that I might buy Most Fit to keep things tight on the way back and drive.  And I was wondering if you think I can anchor it using a car door.  I get out on the side or the ride, anchor it in the car door like you would with a house door or a hotel door and I work out from there.  I’ve never used a suspension trainer.  So, I was asking your opinion on a pretty practical question.  Thanks a lot and have a good day.

Ben:  So, the Most Fit Suspension Strap is something that you can get at PacificFit.net.  And I discovered it as a poor man’s version of a TRX.   It’s extremely portable.  It’s extremely versatile.  And it allows you to do all of these suspended exercises like suspended push-ups, suspended single leg lunges.  It’s pretty much a full body exercise routine.  I’ve got a little 20 to 30 minute routine that I do with my suspension strap.  Sometimes, I’ll even do it super slow.  It’s so that I take advantage of some of the cardiovascular effects that we were talking about a few weeks ago.  It’s when we talked about doing super slow training can really jack up blood pressure and jack up some of the constriction and dilation of vessels as you’re exercising.  So, I like to use the suspension strap.  I like to travel with it.  And I like to do super slow workouts with it too.  But as far as how it works, you put it into a door.  The strap goes into the door, any door in your house like the garage door.  And you close the door.  And it stays in there really well.  I’ve never used it in a car door.  And you might be a little bit concerned about the window in a car door.  It’s how a window can be a little finicky.

Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  So, I’m not 100% sure.  It’s one of those things where I’d say you do it at your own risk.  But if it does stick in the car door okay, the only other issue there unless you’ve got one of your jacked up red neck Idaho pickup trucks that we’ve got up here in the Pacific North West.  It’s that the car sits fairly low to the ground.  And it’s about half the height of an actual door in a house.  So, some of the suspended stuff like suspended rows, suspended push-ups, some of those you might feel as though you’re too close to the ground.  I guess one of the things that you can do is double up the straps so you shorten them a little bit.  I’ve used the thing on airports around rails.  I’ve used it around a tree before.  I’ve used it in a post in my backyard.  I’ve just never used it in a car door.  So, understand that the car maybe a little low to the ground.  Also make sure that the car’s not moving.  That’d probably important too.

Brock:  Or that would add a whole different set of problems there.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Or a whole new workout.  You have to keep up with the car while you’re doing it.

Ben:  You can get a little more plyometric.  Anyways though, the Most Fit Suspension Strap is super cool.  I like it.  I travel with it.  I just shove it into my bag.  You never know when you’re getting a layover in an airport even if you’re going to have to stay in a hotel that doesn’t have a gym.  It’s a good way to stay fit and to keep yourself very jacked and ripped when you’re traveling.  So, I’ll put a link to it in the show notes.

Brock:  Jacked and ripped.

Ben:  Both at the same time.   Or toned and sexy or whatever floats your boat.


Brock:  Alright.  Let’s move on to the next question from Bill.

Bill:   I am a 60 year old male triathlete and using Ben’s advanced ½ Ironman training plan.  What adjustments in training, recovery, and nutrition would you advise in general for older athletes?  I find I’m taking an extra day off usually an easy recovery training day while working full time with family responsibilities.

Ben:  Yes.  There are some things that happen as you get old.  And probably the most important thing to remember is that one of the reasons that we’ve got guys who is 39, 4o, or 41 kicking butt in triathlon.

Brock:  You’re talking about me aren’t you?

Ben:  I’m talking about you.  You’re the first guy I thought off.

Brock:  Of course.

Ben:  You along with Craig Alexander, Chris McCormick, and Lance Armstrong.  These guys have higher proportion of slow twitch fibers.  They’re also more experienced in sports.  So, they make fewer mistakes nutritionally and etc.  But they’ve got higher proportions of slow twitch muscle fiber.  And your endurance stays fairly high as you age.  This is something that I was listening to Chris McCormick talk about in a podcast.  He is a guy who’s 39 now or 38 or something like that.  And he’s an Australian triathlete.  And he went out to go out for the Australian Olympic team.  He didn’t quite make it.  But he did fairly well.  And then he went and he raced over in Spain where I was racing.  And he won that race.  He said that it felt easy because of all this fast explosive training that he was doing.  And he said that he had his doubts going into it if he had the actual endurance.  But the fact is that endurance comes pretty easy the older that you are.  And speed, power, and strength become the things that you tend to have a diminished capacity for.  And that you have to make sure that you prioritize.

So, in terms of training for older athletes, cardiovascular aerobic and endurance training should be at the bottom of your list.  They should certainly be included.  But understand that that’s the stuff that you’re going to be best at.  And more of your time should be spent focusing on things like hill running, interval training.  So, it’s training the anaerobic energy system.  Doing weight training to maintain muscle tone and strength and fast twitch muscle fiber and a lot of the stuff that you tend to lose more quickly.  And you have more difficulty building as you age.  Plyometric exercises like hops and jumps for your power.  And basically, you prioritize that stuff.  So, I would say that if you’re going to use one of the triathlon training programs that I’ve personally written and you’re get rid of a specific workout or modify a specific workout.  I would say that you skew it away from endurance.  Skew it more towards prioritizing getting any of the strength workouts or any of the interval training workouts in the program.  And you’re sacrificing if you’re going to sacrifice anything or any of the longer aerobic training workouts.  In terms of some other considerations as far as nutrition goes for older athletes you may want to consider creatine supplementation.  It’s because your natural levels of creatine are going to go down a little bit.  And that can help to improve your performance during something like high power output sessions.  So, that’d be one thing to consider for an older athlete.  It would be creatine supplementation.  I’d certainly also look into taking a Whole Foods Vitamin C to help you with collagen formation and recovery.  That’s going to be a really crucial vitamin.

Brock:  By Whole Foods you mean not just a straight vitamin C like Solar Tablet.

Ben:  Yes.  Don’t use synthetic vitamin C.  Use something like Solar Synergy.  It’s really good.  It’s by Mt. Capra.  I like that one.  It’s a powder.  If you want a higher calorie version or something you could use as a meal replacement like Living Fuel Super Berry.  It’s really good.  Getting one of these blends, it’s a really potent blend of fruit and vegetables without having to get all the fructose sugars.  And it’s the stuff that you’d get if you were eating ten pieces of fruit to get some really good whole food vitamin C.  That’d be important.  Making sure from an anti-inflammatory and recovery perspective that you’re really keeping your omega three intake up and your vegetable oil and omega six intake fairly controlled.  So, just getting lots of good high quality omega three from nuts and seeds like walnuts and pumpkin seeds.  You should get fish into your diet like really good oily fish as much as possible.  Using cod liver oil and really focusing on staying away from anything that’s going to contribute to inflammation like grains, vegetable oils, and sugars.  Sulfur-containing amino acids are going to be really good for your joint cartilage health.  And you’re going to find sulfur-containing amino acids primarily in meat, poultry, fish, and dairy.  It’s why you tend to see some of the older vegan and vegetarian athletes tend to look a little bit frail.  But I personally do not want to have chicken arms and chicken legs when I’m 70.  I would like to have decent amounts of muscle.  I’d like to be able to hit a golf ball and a tennis ball pretty hard.  And I want to be able to fill out a suit when I’m that age.  And so, for me I don’t ever really plan on going vegan or vegetarian.  Even as I get older and I don’t have anything against those diets per se.  I think they can be done right.  We’ve had guys like Rich Roll on the show before.  We’ve talked about how to do it right.  But I certainly do think it’s very difficult to maintain muscle mass especially as you get old and especially if you’re active.

If you’re not eating meat, poultry, fish, and some type of dairy product.  I would include that stuff.  And then make sure that along with that whole food vitamin C, you’re getting decent amounts of some of the antioxidants like selenium and vitamin E.  In most cases if you’re going to be using Whole Food’s Vitamin C like Solar Synergy, Living Fuel Super Berry, any of these other ones.  You’re going to get a pretty decent dose of antioxidants as well.  Check out the anti-aging post that I did at BenGreenfieldFitness.com.  I think it was titled “How to look sexy as hell as you age” or something along those lines.  But I go into some of the better anti-aging antioxidants that are out there.  Acetyl CoA is one that I talk about.  Carnitine is another.  There’s the stuff called NutraREV.  It’s like a liquid anti-aging antioxidant compound.  That’s stuff is pretty good.  I’d keep that around.  That’s going to be more on just keeping you from getting nasty skin and stuff out there and being exposed to the sun and everything as you’re training.  But remember, your skin is a connective tissue.  So, the way that your skin looks can be reflective of the way that the underlying connective tissue looks.  So, a good antioxidant intake can help out for sure.  Those are some of the main things that I would focus on in terms of nutrition and training for an older athlete.  And as I grow older, I would be focusing on all those things personally.  So, that’s what I would do.


Brock:  In the Future of Health Now series, I think that was in July.  They did a couple of really good episodes about anti-aging process.  And they were really informative.  So, if you want to look those up, there is some really great information in those too.

Ben:  Yes.  And in some cases, you can have a little bit of diminished vitamin nutrient and mineral absorption as you age.  Your gut tends to get a little less efficient.  It’s the same as kids.  My kids do a multivitamin.  I recommend to folks who are pushing about 70 plus to also do a multivitamin.  I prefer liquid form.  It’s highly absorbable.  I’ll make sure I put a link in the sow notes to the liquid multivitamin that I would recommend.  If you do find that you’re having difficulty, you could get a micronutrient analysis to find something like this for sure.  But getting a good liquid multivitamin would be prudent as well.

Brock:  Excellent.  Well, let’s move along to another Bill.  We’ve got Ben’s and Bill’s coming up yin yang today.

Bill:  About eight months ago before I became a listener, I purchased Ellington Darden’s “New High Intensity Training”.  As a result of applying this approach, I have to become stronger at 48 years old than at any other time in my life including while playing college football.  It’s been great.  However, I have two concerns.  First, I am still going up with no particular reason to keep getting stronger.  I’m a creative director not an offensive tackle.  Should I just pick a plateau and choose to stay there forever or what?  Also, my lifts are starting to be limited by or possibly damage non-target areas.  For example, I could go higher on dumbbell flies as far as my chest is concerned but my wrists aren’t strong enough.  And I can keep squatting higher weights but my hips are hurting.  It seems like my body’s trying to self-limit, maybe?  I am surprised by how strong I have become with no ceiling in sight.  Is there a ceiling?  Any thoughts, on HIT training in general and this situation in particular?

Ben:  I feel so bad for Bill.

Brock:  Yes.  I just can’t stop getting stronger.

Ben:  All the hard gator men listening in are about to jump through the podcast and strangle Bill.

Brock:  I’d punch him in the nose if he was here.

Ben:  Well, Bill sounds like a classic what would be called a mesomorph body type.  He played college football.  I take about this in my book about body typing.  It’s in the Get Fit Guy’s Guide in Achieving Ideal Body.   It’s the propensity that a body type is going to have towards putting on muscle more quickly or maybe being better at endurance or better at speed.  When it comes to Bill, he’s doing a protocol that was designed by a football player/body builder to get huge, to get really big.  This guy Ellington Darden, he’s a pretty impressive guy.  If you look him up, he’s written this book on high intensity training.  And he really has found a way to put on decent amounts of muscle.  His program is actually pretty similar to the Doug McGuff Body by science protocol that we talked about in the podcast a couple of weeks ago.  But it has more exercises.  He’s got these super slow routines.  And you do this in just one set to failure.  And you’re doing it at a fairly slow controlled manner.  But rather than doing the body by science protocol which is leg press, row, chest press, and pull down or pull up.

This Darden protocol for high intensity training is actually seven to 12 exercises per routine.  So, you’re doing a lot more exercises.  You’re doing one single set of each of those exercises to complete failure.  And you go two times a week.  That’s the basic protocol.  It sounds like Bill is actually modified that a little bit to go three sets a week.  But it’s a similar idea.  Now of course, if muscle building is your goal, this is a great protocol.  And Bill has experienced that obviously to the point where he says his chest is getting stronger but his getting to such a high weight that his wrists aren’t strong enough.  His increasing the squat, his hips are hurting.  Bill, you answered your own question.  Your body will get to the point where it will try to self-limit.  Now, some of that self-limitation is simply going to be getting to the point where your skeletal structure simply just can’t take on the load of what you’re doing.  Or you just don’t have the body type to be able to say bench press 600 pounds if you’ve got really skinny wrists.  But there can be other issues that can cause you to self-limit like you may have some fascial adhesions.

So, for example the fascia which is this layer of connective tissue that covers all your muscles.  Maybe it’s pretty beat up.  I don’t know how much soft tissue work you do.  I don’t know if you foam roll or get massages regularly.  But if the fascia is not pliable, then a lot of times that can limit your mobility.  And it can cause areas of pain as you’re getting heavier and heavier or engaging in more intense activity.  That’s something to think about.  There can certainly be bony abnormalities like sacroiliac joint dysfunction or vertebra that are out of place or any other number of chiropractic issues.  And that may also be limiting your body.  So, if you do really want to keep getting stronger or you want to be able to lift the weights that you’re currently lifting and not get this discomfort that you’re getting.  You could start getting more soft tissue work.  And you could potentially even meet with a chiropractic physician or an osteopathic physician to look at your spine or to look at your sacroiliac joint or to look at your neck.  Those would be the three areas to get checked out to make sure that you’re not locked up.

Now, the other thing that you could consider doing is taking this program that’s seems to be making you very strong which is great.  There’s nothing wrong with that.  But maybe consider cycling it throughout the year.   It’s where you’re doing something more along the lines of what I do.  It’s where I do more weight lifting in the fall and in the winter.  And then I do a lot more outdoor sports and skew things a little bit more towards cardio as the weather gets nice in the spring and in the summer.  So, for example in the warmer months, I’m doing more tennis, more triathlon, more outdoor activities than spending more time indoors playing basketball and lifting weights and doing more intense stuff.  It’s as the weather starts to shove me indoors more.  So, those are some of the thoughts that come up here.  But check out your fascia.  Check out your neck, back, and your hips to ensure that you’re body self-limitations aren’t based off of anything orthopedically that’s going on.  And then you may just want to consider taking this program and mixing it in with these other stuff throughout the year.


Brock:  I don’t think you necessarily need to pick a plateau and just stay there forever.  That seems really boring.  It seems like you’d lose interest really quickly in that.

Ben:  Yes.  That’s the thing.  You’d want to enjoy life.  You want to enjoy whatever training that you’re doing.  And you will get bored with something like this if you’re just doing the same program over and over again for three years.  That’s one of the things that keep books selling and both diet and exercise as people get bored with stuff.  Honestly, I would say that probably ten years ago, you could’ve taken a routine out of any bookstore, diet or exercise, and be pretty successful with it.  People get bored with stuff.  They like to see new things like new gear, new tools, new training methods, new recipes, and so.  So, that’s one of the cool things about having so many options.  You can definitely do more than one thing throughout the year.

Brock:  Our next question comes from Laurie.

Laurie:  My partner just completed abdominal radiation therapy for cancer.  Needless to say, this pretty much trashed her digestive system.  I have been looking into the GAPS diet as a potential method to help her along the healing path.  However, when I’ve done a search through PubMed, I have not been able to find any peer reviewed articles on this diet.  Are you familiar with any that are out there?  I may just not have the correct search parameters.

Ben:  This is a tough situation.  There is an approach to cancer that uses the GAPS diet.  And I really like the approach.  And I’ll describe it in a minute here in a little bit more detail because it actually is good information for anybody that’s trying to beat cancer or deal with something like that.  It’s a more holistic approach to cancer.  But as far as this abdominal radiation therapy goes, it’s really tough.  You can get what’s called radiation enteritis.  It’s basically inflammation of your GI track after your abdomen has been radiated.  What happens is you have all of these rapidly proliferating epithelial cells that lie in your small and large intestine.  And radiation therapy causes what’s called a cytotoxic effect on those.  It essentially kills off a ton of those cells.  So, you’re essentially creating leaky gut syndrome.  And it’s the same type of issues that you might get let’s say if you were completely gluten-free and you’re eating a really clean diet.  And then all of a sudden, you just ate bread, pizza, beer, ice cream, and etc. for a while.  And you take that and you multiply that by ten when you’re doing something like radiation therapy on your gut.  So, you get some extreme damage and you get lots of basically wearing away of this single cell lining between your small intestine and your blood stream.  And there is some pretty nasty stuff.  You can get rectal pain, rectal bleeding, and a ton of mal -absorption.  It’s because a lot of the digestive and absorbing functions of your gastrointestinal tracts just get shoved out the window.

So, in most cases in a typical medical management environment, you’re going to get prescribed anti-diarrheal agents.  It’s because your gastric motility goes through the roof.  This stuff goes through you really fast.  And usually you’ll get what’s called a bile salt sequestrant agent.  It keeps you from being able to produce enough bile to actually breakdown some of these things that are going through you.  Or to breakdown the bile that’s getting released into your gut.  You, usually from the radiation therapy, get enough damage to your intestinal villi.  They’re not able to produce digestive enzymes.  And one of the main ones is lactase.  So, you got to stay away from milk.  You’ve got to stay away from milk products because you can’t breakdown lactose sugars.  It’s because lactase is produced by these villi in your intestine.  Those things just get destroyed.  So, it’s a tough situation.  And you can certainly do some of the things that come to mind logically when I talk about these stuff like taking digestive enzymes.  You avoid dairy foods.  And there are even things that can act as natural anti-diarrheal agents like for example nutmeg.  It’s one of the most common herbs that can really decrease what’s called gastric motility.  But ultimately, these are all band aids.  They’re not going to heal the gut.  And that’s where the GAPS diet would come in.  It’s because it is a gut healing protocol.  And it will help to provide the nourishment that the cell lining of your gut actually needs in order for it to come along and bounce back from something like this.

The issue is that there isn’t, as Lauri says, really a lot of clinical evidence or a lot of clinical studies that have been done on the GAPS diet and something like radiation enteritis.  But there is a guy named Tom Cowan who’s an MD.  And he has a really cool nutritional approach to cancer in general in terms of healing the body and staving off cancer and uncontrolled growth of tumors.  And it does involve the GAPS diet.  And so, I’ll describe this to you.  It’s good information for anybody who has cancer or who’s trying to decrease cancer or maybe trying to bounce back.  And I think this would be good information to go over.  So basically, Tom Cowan whole philosophy is based off of the fact that our hunter and gatherer ancestors in many situations lived almost completely free of cancer for thousands of years.  And what happened was there were several changes that occurred.  Primarily, agriculture and the leeching of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that happens with industrialized agriculture.  It removed some of the good things that we’re getting from our diet.  And it also introduced some things that could potentially aggravate the GI tract.  And I’ll get into why that will be an issue for cancer in a second.  But specifically lots of modern grains that we can’t digest all that well in many cases like the modern agricultural grains like wheat.

So, if you look at more cancer free hunter and gatherer diets, they’re typically about 70 animal foods.  They’re mostly fat, lots of organ meat, lots of bones especially in a form of bone broth which is really healing for the digestive tract.  There are plant foods for sure.  But there are not a lot of grains.  It’s mostly some mineral-rich and phytochemical-rich plant foods.  And in many cases, the plant foods were fermented which we talked about a little bit earlier in the podcast.  It’s so that they could serve as food for bacteria in the stomach.  And that would greatly increase their vitamin content.  And so, his whole approach to cancer therapy is based off of replicating this diet and throwing some extra things in.  So, the first loop is he has the GAPS diet as part of this cancer protocol.  And so, the idea is that in the human gut people get their gut stripped with antibiotics, vaccines, processed foods.  Not getting enough of the right gut flora via the birth canal when they’re due to a C-section or some type of gut dysbiosis in the mom who’s having the baby.  And so, we’re getting a lot of folks who have unhealthy gut ecology or holes in the gut wall.  And that can increase risk of cancer because basically what happens is you end up with two different chemicals getting absorbed into the blood stream.  And those chemicals are specifically called gluteomorphin and casomorphin.  And they are opiates.  And when you’re getting a bunch of opiates absorbed into your bloodstream, they can paralyze your immune response.  And it decreases your ability to do something like fight off cancer.

And so in the GAPS diet, what happens is you eliminate all of the disaccharides.  These are sugar, potatoes, and grains, as well as lactose even if it’s from raw milk.  And what that does is it keeps a lot of these morphine chemicals from getting absorbed into the bloodstream.  So, you eliminate disaccharides using the GAPS diet.  You can go to GAPSDiet.com to actually see how to do that.  And you instead switch to a lot of healthy fast like butter, ghee, and coconut oil, grass-fed meats, organ meats, sea food, some low starch vegetables, bone broth, and cod liver oil.  And those are the basic components of the diet.  So, that is the dietary component.

And the other thing that is thrown into that is number one, lots of enzymes.  So, doing all the enzymes is actually based off of some work done by a biologist back in the early 1900s.  A biologist named Dr. John Beard.  He wrote this book called “The Enzyme Treatment of Cancer”.  And the idea is that stem cells and undifferentiated stem cells can cause some of these cancer issues.  And so, doing a high dose digestive enzyme does a good job at controlling the undifferentiated growth of a lot of these what are called in his book trophoblastic cells.  That’s a really interesting book.  It’s “The Enzyme Treatment of Cancer” if you wanted to check it out.  I know it’s old but it’s still interesting information.  So, the GAPS diet is combined with a bunch of different digestive enzymes.  The other thing that’s introduced is what’s called low dose naltrexone.  And naltrexone is basically a drug that was originally developed to treat heroine overdose.  But it blocks opiate receptors.  So, essentially what you’re doing when you block opiate receptors is you cause the body to make more endorphins.  When the body makes more endorphins that can actually help to improve your immune function.  So, low dose naltrexone is actually something that’s also been recommended for something like thyroid as well.  It’s when the body is attacking its own thyroid tissue for low thyroid.  It also fits into this protocol as well.  So, you essentially introduce this low dose naltrexone as an alternative drug therapy.  And it’s safer.

And then the last thing is something called iscador which is actually the most prescribed cancer medicine in the world.  It’s very popular in Europe.  And it’s the last leg of this protocol that Tom Cowan uses.  But basically, what it does is it stimulates a bacterial infection.  So, you get a little bit of inflammation.  You get a huge response in what are called your natural killer cells or your T-cells.  And you get everything that would normally happen if you were infected except the actual infection or the toxic effect itself.  And so, this massive inflammatory response can help you to fight off a tumor.  So, you put all these stuff together.  And basically, that’s the alternative cancer treatment.  The other thing that is really recommended on that diet or happens naturally on diet is that you’re primarily using ketones as a fuel.  And cancer relies and we’ve talked about this on the show before but cancer relies on glucose as a fuel.  So, you’re giving the cancer cells less sugar to burn.  And there’s actually drug called wabane.  And wabane is a drug that can increase the ability of the body to metabolize fats. And so if you’re taking a cancer cell and trying to cut it off from being able to burn sugar, basically this wabane is made out of cholesterol.  And it catalyzes the metabolism of fats which basically allows you to fuel the body more reliably on fat.  So, I think it’s got some side effects which is why the average person just go out and starts using wabane as a drug.  But it’s also something that’s recommended in this protocol.  So, that’s a ton of information.  But if you want to look into this more, the guy’s name is Thomas Cowan.  And like I said, he uses the GAPS diet as part of his approach to cancer.  Doing something like bone broths and staying away from a lot of these disaccharides rich foods would certainly be something that would be prudent.  It’s if you’re trying to bounce back from radiation enteritis.  You’ve taken a lot of digestive enzymes.  But then also, you look into this guy and some of the other stuff that he’s recommending as well.  It’s because from a cancer standpoint, if I had cancer or I was concerned about it, this would be my approach right there.  I’m not a doctor.  But I would definitely use his approach.  I think his book is called Fourfold Path to Healing.  So, we’ll try and put a link to it in the show notes if you want to check that out.


Brock:  That’s great.  Well, good luck to you Laurie and your partner too.  Okay, our next question comes from Andrew.

Andrew:   I seem to be producing very high levels of ammonia in my sweat.  In fact, if I was working out in a public gym, I’m sure people would think I’d wet myself.  This seems to be irrespective of whether it’s a low intensity long workout or high intensity intervals.  I consider my diet reasonably balanced though I am having trouble lowering my body fat levels despite a slow but steady weight loss.  I take no supplements though I have just purchased a protein powder.

Ben:  The protein powder gives away here.  Basically, what happens is you smell this ammonia in the sweat a lot especially in endurance athletes.  And it comes from the breakdown of amino acids in your body.  So, what happens is that ammonia is made up of nitrogen and hydrogen.  And when the nitrogen which is basically a waste product that needs to be excreted by the body, it’s processed in the kidneys.  And that forms urea.  And that gets excreted in your urine.  And there’s too much nitrogen.  It gets excreted as ammonia in your sweat.  So, you get this nitrogenous smell in you sweat.  One of the things that cause you to be producing all this nitrogen is burning protein as a fuel like turning protein into glucose or burning high amounts of amino acids.  And you’ll typically see this in people who are trying to eat a low carbohydrate or trying to limit their calorie intake.  But they’re doing so through taking high amounts of protein like protein bars, protein powders, and etc.  It’s that rather than putting their body into a fatty acid burning state by doing higher fats like coconut milk, almond butter, and stuff like that.  So, I would step back the protein and step up the fat.

Another thing to consider is your water intake.  If you consume enough fluid, it dilutes the ammonia.  And you get a lot less potent smell.  So, make sure that you do drink enough fluids to at least make sure you’re urine isn’t super yellow.  That can be another issue too.  It’s that mild dehydration can cause that ammonia smell.  But especially the fact that Andrew is doing the protein powder and using that, it’s more likely that he’s just basically burning too much protein and not enough fat as a fuel.  And that can cause that excess nitrogen that gets excreted and winds up as ammonia as a sweat.  So, make sure that if you’re doing a low carbohydrate diet or if you’re lowering your calorie intake.  You don’t go up above about 35 percent of your daily intake from protein.  And that’ll help out quite a bit.

Brock:  Very cool.  I didn’t know that.  That’s awesome.  Well, here’s our last question.  It comes from Gerry.  He mentions about Dr. Oz.

Ben:  We should get Dr. Oz on the podcast.

Brock:  Well, I think he said at one point that you agree was about 30 percent of what he says.

Ben:  Yes.  It depends.  He follows trends a lot.  He’s got some good stuff to say.  But some of it is taking research and blowing it out of proportion in many cases.

Brock:  Like eggs and smoking.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Back to Gerry’s question.

Gerry:    I recently watched a Dr. Oz episode that mentioned chlorogenic acid in the form of pure green coffee bean extract.  The info presented stated that this acid slows the release of glucose into the bloodstream and burns glucose and fat in the liver.  I’m trying to drop weight but I’m a very active triathlete who works out six days per week.  Would this supplement be beneficial to help me reach my weight loss goals?  Or would it be detrimental to my training and nutrition by decreasing the amount of glucose available to my body during workouts?


Ben:  Well, the green coffee bean extract probably the first study I think it was earlier this year.  It was back in spring.  There was this study done that showed that green coffee bean extract could help folks who were obese or overweight lose a little bit more weight.  It was compared to people who didn’t take this green coffee bean extract.  So, they took a pretty small group of folks.  There were 16 overweight subjects.  There were eight males and eight females.  And one group got the green coffee bean extract.  One group got a placebo.  And they did basically one high dose green coffee bean extract, one low dose coffee bean extract.  And it turned out that the group that was doing the green coffee bean extract was able to lose a very slight small and laughably significant amount of extra weight.  The group that didn’t use the green coffee bean extract and used a placebo lost something like 0.9 percent body fat.  And the green coffee bean extract group lost 1.2 percent body fat.  And the interesting thing was that the group that used low dose coffee bean extracts lost 1.2 percent.  And the group that used more coffee bean extract lost 1.1 percent. So, there wasn’t even a dose response effect.  It means that the group that was taking more coffee bean extract didn’t lose more weight than the amount of weight lost overall.  It was just barely enough to be significant.  But the newspaper headlines and magazines’ headlines took this and ran with it.  And the green coffee bean extract companies have made a lot of money.  I was walking through Walmart the other day and there were big central isles stacked with these green coffee bean extract.

Brock:  Yes.  Starbucks has a line that’s based on the green coffee bean stuff right now.

Ben:  It’s stupid. Anyways though, they did another study earlier.  It came out a couple of months ago.  It found that green coffee bean extract actually does have a pretty cool ergogenic effect on your exercise potential.  And this was in rodents.  But what they found was that a group given high dose of green coffee bean extract was able to run about 60 percent longer and a little bit faster and definitely went farther.  And they performed twice as much work than rodents who received a placebo.  The interesting thing was that it seemed that the effect was mediated by higher metabolic efficiency.  It means that the rodents appeared to the ones that were given the green coffee bean extract.  It didn’t appear that the liver or the muscles were burning through the glycogen quit as quickly.  They had higher levels of liver glycogen and higher levels of muscle glycogen after having exercise post green coffee bean extract.  So, it appeared that they were pushed a little bit more in the direction of burning fatty acids as a fuel.  But it doesn’t appear that it hurt their performance.  It appears that it helped their performance.

So, as Gerry was concerned, it would be detrimental to his training and nutrition, it didn’t appear to be detrimental.  It appeared to be pushing away from glucose and more towards fatty acids for these mice.  The interesting thing is that you don’t have to go out and spend money on a green coffee bean extract to get the amounts of chlorogenic acid.  It’s the active component that caused this effect in this study that was done on rodents.  You only need about the equivalent of a pretty big black cup of coffee.  It’s about 16 to 20 ounces of just regular black coffee to get enough chlorogenic acid to cause that same effect.  So, it comes back to what we’ve talked about on the show before.  Coffee is pretty cool.  Taking it before exercise in a fasted state, it can bump up fatty acid utilization.  It could give you a definite ergogenic effect especially if you are caffeine sensitive.  It means that you don’t use caffeine for anywhere from seven to 14 days prior to when you want it to give you that ergogenic effect.  And then you give yourself caffeine.  That’s something important to remember.  Any of these studies in rodents, it’s not like these mice were drinking a cup of coffee in the morning and then they just gave them more cups.  These are rodents that were not exposed to caffeine.  They got the caffeine.  They got the chlorogenic acid.  So, it’s possible that there will be no effect if you just drink coffee everyday anyways.


Brock:  I noticed if I have two cups of coffee before the podcast, I can read a lot better.

Ben:  Yes.  I just like to imagine these little mice sitting at their desk drinking their mug of coffee.

Brock:  I was actually picturing them in little cars in the drive thru at Tim Hortons.

Ben:  They’re eating their eggs and smoking their cigarettes.

Brock:  Totally.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Alright.  Well, there you go Gerry.  Don’t believe Dr. Oz all the time.

Ben:  Anyways, I guess that wraps up the questions.

Brock:  It does.  Yes.

Ben:  We’ll link to everything in the show notes.  I know I talked about that book the Fourfold Path to Healing.  It’s when I started to drone on about cancer.  Go check out that book.  I really do recommend it.  It’s a good little read.  So, you can grab that off at Amazon.  I’ll link to those liquid multivitamin that I talked about and also to Capraflex.  I’ll link to the Most Fit Suspension Strap and everything else.  Be sure that if you’re in the Spokane- Coeur d’Alene area, check out that probiotics class that my wife and I are teaching next Thursday over at Pilgrims Market.  If you want in on the Thailand trip, we’ll put a link to that in the show notes.

Brock:  Don’t forget to go to AudiblePodcast.com/Ben and get your free audio book.

Ben:  You can get your 50 Shades of Grey.  You can geek out on that.  It’s a great one to listen to. We should probably mention that we’re joking when we say that you should listen to it with your family.

Brock:  Yes.  Don’t listen.  Well, unless your family is very liberal.  It’s kind of creepy.

Ben:  It’s like a sex novel basically.  So, it’s dirty.  So, anyways though, be sure to leave the podcast a ranking.  If you get a chance to leave a donation over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com that is always appreciated.  I will be publishing a fairly controversial article this Friday over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com.  However, I’m also escaping to the mountains of Montana with zero internet access for a couple of days and just eating really good fish at really cold lakes.  And I will also be camping.  So, if you guys leave me comments and write me offended letters about my podcast or about my article, then I won’t get them.  I just thought I’d mention that.  I will be out of touch for a little while.  Anyways though, that’s it.


For personal nutrition, fitness or triathlon consulting, supplements, books or DVD’s from Ben Greenfield, please visit Pacific Elite Fitness at http://www.pacificfit.net



Aug 15, 2012 free podcast: How To Modify Your Exercise And Nutrition As You Get Older. Also: healing a broken foot, dealing with an eating and/or exercise disorder, post workout nausea, using the MostFit Suspension System, does your body self-limit, healing your gut after radiation therapy, ammonia in your sweat, and can green coffee bean extract hurt your workouts?

Have a podcast question for Ben? click Ask a Podcast Question at the bottom of this page, Skype to “pacificfit” or scroll down on this post to access the free “Ask Ben” form.

If you have trouble listening, downloading, or transferring to your mp3 player just e-mail [email protected]. Also, please don't forget to leave the podcast a ranking in iTunes – it only takes a minute of your time and it helps grow our healthy community!


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Listener Q&A:

As compiled and read by Brock, the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast “sidekick”.

Audio Question from Tony:
Recently broke a bone in his foot and is looking for help from the nutritional side and supplement side. Also looking for advice on how to stay fit while on crutches for the next 8 weeks.

~ In his response to Troy, Ben mentions Capraflex.

Audio Question from Chuck:
Has been dealing with an eating disorder for years. Is currently checked in to an in-patient facility and eating all meals there. Exercise is frowned on until more weight is restored. Feels like all the weight he is putting on is going straight to his stomach. Wants to distribute the weight more evenly without sabotaging any success he is having in the program.

Audio Question from Ben:
Post workout nausea and/or lightheadedness. He trains fasted, usually around 11 or noon. Drinks a shake in the locker room right after lifting, squatting, push/pull etc… drinks a small coconut water and whey protein shake. 10 or 15 minutes after the shake he gets dizzy and nauseous. He doesn't have this issue if he skips the shake.

Audio Question from Ben:
He is driving from California to New York and would like to stay fit during the trip. Do you think he could anchor the Most Fit Suspension Trainer on the car door the same way you do on a home or hotel door?

~ In his response to Ben, Ben mentions The MostFit Suspension Strap.

Bill asks:
I am a 60 year old male triathlete and using Ben's advanced 1/2 Ironman training plan. What adjustments in training, recovery and nutrition would you advise in general for older athletes? I find I'm taking an extra day off (usually an easy recovery training day) while working full time with family responsibilities.

~ In his response, Ben mentions the liquid multivitamin.

Bill asks:
About eight months ago (before I became a listener) I purchased Ellington Darden's “New High Intensity Training,” As a result of applying this approach, I have become stronger, at 48-years-old, than at any other time in my life (including while playing college football). It's been great. However, I have two concerns. First, I am still going up… with no particular reason to keep getting stronger. I'm a creative director, not an offensive tackle. Should I just pick a plateau and choose to stay there forever? Or what? Also, my lifts are starting to be limited by (or possibly damage) non-target areas – for example, I could go higher on dumbbell flies as far as my chest is concerned, but my wrists aren't strong enough. And I can keeping squatting higher weights, but my hips are hurting. Seems like my body's trying to self-limit, maybe? I am surprised by how strong I have become with no ceiling in sight… is there a ceiling? Any thoughts, on HIT training in general and this situation in particular?

Lauri says:
My partner just completed abdominal radiation therapy for cancer. Needless to say, this pretty much trashed her digestive system. I have been looking into the GAPS diet as a potential method to help her along the healing path. However, when I've done a search through PubMed, I have not been able to find any peer reviewed articles on this diet. Are you familiar with any that are out there? I may just not have the correct search parameters.

~ In his response, Ben talks about the book: Fourfold Path To Healing.

Andrew asks:
I seem to be producing very high levels of ammonia in my sweat. In fact, if I was working out in a public gym I'm sure people would think I'd wet myself. This seems to be irrespective of whether it's a low intensity long workout or high intensity intervals. I consider my diet reasonably balanced though I am having trouble lowering my body fat levels despite a slow but steady weight loss. I take no supplements though I have just purchased a protein powder.

Gerry says:
I recently watched a Dr. Oz episode that mentioned chlorogenic acid in the form of pure green coffee bean extract. The info presented stated that this acid slows the release of glucose into the bloodstream and burns glucose and fat in the liver. I'm trying to drop weight, but I'm a very active triathlete who works out 6 days per week. Would this supplement be beneficial to help me reach my weight loss goals? Or would it be detrimental to my training and nutrition by decreasing the amount of glucose available to my body during workouts?



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