Episode #245 – Full Transcript

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Podcast #245 from https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/06/245-what-are-the-best-fat-loss-supplements-controlling-blood-sugar-during-ketosis-natural-asthma-remedies/


Introduction:  In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: What are the Best Fat Loss Supplements, What To Do About Worn Cartilage, Controlling Blood Sugar During Ketosis, Natural Remedies for Exercise Induced Asthma, Does ADHD Medication Affect Performance, and How To Heal Injured Ribs.

Brock:  Okay. Brace yourself.

Ben:  I’m braced.

Brock:  I had some TianChi earlier this morning and then I had a high-fat coffee with lots of extra MCT oil. And I think I’m kinda on the verge of freaking out.

Ben:  Yeah, you’re a nerd dude. We have completely geeked out on this biohacking thing. I think we’ve probably ruined both of our chances of ever being laid ever in the future.

Brock:  Yeah. I wonder how that feels. What it’s like.

Ben:  I, what getting laid? Or…..

Brock:  Yeah. It’s kinda like your left hand.

Ben:  Yeah, I don’t know. Sometime I would like to break out of our nerd podcasting mode and go explore worldly pleasures but….

Brock:  But not right now though ‘cause I wanna talk about something else nerdy. I tried the Sweet Beat app for the first time last night and then again this morning and I sent in my report ‘cause I wanna get your opinion but apparently, I’m incredibly stressed.

Ben:  You’re incredibly, you mean your heart rate variability was low?

Brock:  It was low and my stress level number was like a 5 I think. I think it’s a 5 out of 5 which isn’t awesome.

Ben:  Yeah, you know we actually did an interview on the phone app last week.

Brock:  Oh yeah.

Ben: With Ronda and we went in kinda like like how our variability 201 or whatever, kinda like some of the more advanced stuff and if you’re, if you’re testing your morning heart rate variability, and for nobody who has any clue on what we’re talking about….

Brock:  Download the iPhone app or the android app and listen to the interview.

Ben:  Yeah. Or just go to the website and search for heart rate variability. It’s cool cool cool shizzle. Anyways though, the deal with that is that you wanna make sure that you, when you first get that app, and you start using it, it’s not expensive it’s like 4dollars a year.

Brock:  4.99 a year.

Ben:  4.99. There you go. It’s, requires you to do like a baseline measurement and sometimes if you don’t do your baseline measurement, or you have your settings to be like super duper sensitive to your heart rate variability, then it can kinda like freak you out if you’re out there in the morning taking your stress levels and they’re really really high. I figured out something though. If you ever use any type of kinda like pharmaceutical medications to help you sleep whether it be Benadril or like any type of anti-histamine, any of these like Valium type of derivatives, Cyndephamil? Or whatever that, I forgot what the street name for Valium is. The street name, the pharmaceutical. Yeah, they all dump your heart rate variability into the trash so really interesting. Really really interesting is that it has an effect on the nervous system so now that our only listeners are the ones wearing the propeller hats, let’s go ahead and move on.

Brock:  Luckily, I think that’s like 90% of our audience. But don’t tell them.

News Flashes:

Brock:  Alright, if you go over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/245 and scroll down to the section that says “News Flashes,” you’ll be able to find the links to all these super awesome cool studies that Ben’s going to highlight for us.

Ben:  Or studies that are kinda dumb like this one on…..

Brock:  So this, we keep choosing stupid ones. That’s awesome.

Ben:  Okay, so this was a systematic review of the efficacy of ergogenic aids for improving running performance and on top of all that….

Brock:  So an ergogenic aid would be something that gives you a slight advantage, like bump in your energy?

Ben:  Yeah, so they investigated in this review like tons and tons and tons of studies that examine the effects of different ergogenic aids on running performance and drum roll please, the top ergogenic aids for runners from middle distance or kinda like short distance like 400-meter all the way up to 40 kilometer, which is slightly longer than 400-meter, for those of you who do the math.


Brock:  Imperial system.

Ben:  Who do the imperial system. Top supplements, what do you think they were?

Brock:  I don’t know. I think we need another drum roll though.

Ben:  Okay. Drum roll.

Brock:  And, I’m gonnasaycocaine.

Ben:  Close. You’re going down the right trail of the white powder. Sodium bicarbonate was the top supplement for middle distance, and by middle distance they mean 400-meter up to 5k. Sodium bicarbonate. That’s the thing where you load with a bunch of it and it buffers lactic acid. It’s also, it gives you diarrhea and constipation which is probably why it was only good for up to about 5k. So don’t go….

Brock:  It makes you want to run so fast.

Ben:  Shove this stuff down the hatch, yeah. Clinch clinch clinch clinch, sodium bicarbonate, though. It’s number one. So there you go. Number 2 was caffeine.

Brock:  Hey I just had a sip of my coffee while you said that.

Ben:  There you go. You might as well go for a run now. That was across all variables for caffeine and I’ve certainly kinda studied that for myself in my whole deal with caffeine, it’s like catch 22 cause it does really really help you during the performance and then you’re just out once you’re finished, you’re just like buzzed for hours if you use the actual amount of caffeine that’s necessary for an ergogenic aid which is a lot, it’s like 3-5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight, you know it comes out to either drinking 4-5 big cups of coffee, or else just like popping some no doz tabs. So caffeine helps, it’s number 2. And then the last one, this was where I thought the study was kinda dumb cause I don’t consider this to be an ergogenic aid, in as much as like….

Brock:  Sugar.

Ben:  Food. Yeah, sugar, and carbohydrates basically so, yeah. And of course, it should go without saying that all of these studies were done in athletes who were eating a normal kind of typical diet, weren’t fat adapted, weren’t metabolically efficient, and you know, per se and so of course carbohydrates is going to offer a percentage advantage for them too but you know, even for folks who are in like whatever, ketosis, eating a low-carb diet, etc., if any of you were to throw back a bunch of carbohydrate before you go on a run or a bike ride or whatever, yeah, I mean it’s like, it is like you know, you talk about cocaine, it is, literally like injecting amphetamines through a horse syringe into your right butt cheek.

Brock:  I snorted a banana before my run yesterday. It was awesome.

Ben:  But there are of course some health implications down the road and it kinda pulls you out of fat burning and what not but there you go, bicarbonate, caffeine, and carbohydrates were the top 3.

Brock:  All right, not entirely stupid.

Ben:  No. Another study that I thought was cool and this was another like, kinda review or meta-analysis that looked at a bunch of different studies, this one looked at a bunch of different studies and looked at whether or not respiratory muscle training works or not and this would be like those you know, using those little contraptions that would like cazooze those power lung devices and breathing into those.

Brock:  By sucking air through a tiny straw or something.

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  Compromising your air way.

Ben:  Yeah, or using one of those elevation training masks or you say, breathing through a straw, even, and this is something that I’ve been doing quite a bit, just like breathing through your nose rather than your mouth when your exercising. If you’re a swimmer, or using like one of those finesse front mounted snorkels and putting a, you can get a flow restrictor on those called a cardio cap, that’s another form of restricted muscle breathing, so it’s not like hypoxic training or altitude training where you get an altitude tent, altitude training mask, where you go to elevation to train. It’s just restricted muscle breathing. So you’re training your respiratory and excretory muscles to work a little bit harder and all this meta analysis did is looked at whether or not there is indeed an improvement in things like exercise endurance time, repetitions that you’re able to perform in especially like sprints type of efforts, muscle strength specifically inspiratory and expiratory muscle strength, and the conclusion of the meta-analysis was that respiratory training muscle can indeed improve sports performance quite significantly so….

Brock:  Cool.

Ben:  You know, my practical advice to folks based on this is just find something that works for you. I’m actually working on putting a MyList up over on the facebook page where I’m kinda like, I’m finding all the different devices that are out there like there’s one called the BreathSlim, it’s actually used for weight loss, you know there’s a PowerLung device, there’s the elevation training mask, there are actually a bunch of different resistance training muscle devices out there.


I’m gonna make a list of them and put them in the facebook page but ultimately, having one of these, even just keeping a PowerLung device in the glove compartment of your car, and use that when you’re driving or commuting, stuff like this actually works people so there you go.

Brock:  Now would you say that a really good place to start would be to just like especially if you’re a runner, bike rider is just breathe through your nose first?

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  Before you launch out into buying this whole kind of crazy crap?

Ben:  Well that, yeah. For me it’s about like what’s practical and I honestly I don’t commute, I don’t drive my car much, I actually have, I don’t really  have time to use like a PowerLung and you probably know my wife to fire with that thing out during dinner and you know, use my…..

Brock:  Your kids would be….

Ben:  They probably would but no, for me, it’s just been nose breathing, nasal breathing, and that helps a ton actually because it really does train you to breathe more slowly and interestingly, I’ll link in the show notes for this episode over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/245 to an interview that we did at enduranceplanet.com. Really interesting interview last week for those of you who are into biohacks and alternative medicine and like cutting edge stuff. It was with this guy named Mark Sircus who is a doctor who is not even allowed to practice in the US cause he got kicked out of the US.

Brock:  Chased out.

Ben:  Lives in Brazil. He’s an interesting dude. Very interesting perspective on a lot of stuff but he talks about how training yourself to breathe more slowly has a lot of downstream effects on not just performance but also just like longevity and decrease risk in chronic disease and stuff like that so he’s actually a fan of resisted breathing devices for more like kind of a health effect but either way, cool stuff and turns out that it works. So….

Brock:  Actually he talked about the sodium bicarbonate as well. Like a study we were talking about being a ergogenic aid but he was talking about not sodium, it was magnesium bicarbonate.

Ben:  Magnesium bicarbonate. And he has some really cool protocols we haven’t got into this podcast. We’ll probably save it for another day or whatever but like using a nebulizer to deliver magnesium bicarbonate literally look just like straight into the body through the airways prior to performance. He’s on our Super Human coach network Board of Directors. The mastermind  that I read for personal trainers, he’s in there and he has some really really cool advice but you know, again, he gets a little kind of woowoo too sometimes so you gotta rein him in but.

Brock:  Don’t we all?

Ben:  Yeah, who’s talking? So the last one that I wanted to mention was the best two ab exercises. One of the best two ab exercises. What do you think Brock? This was a study that looked at a bunch. You know, crunches, sit-ups, ab rollers…..

Brock:  I’m sure it involves one of those seen on TV devices but it’s gotta….

Ben:  Electromyographic, like everything. He looked at everything. What do you thing were the top 2 ab exercises you could do to get a stronger core?

Brock:  Probably like planking and some sort of Bulgarian stand-up Romanian.

Ben:  Something European.

Brock:  Eastern European places that make you stand up wearing a big weight.

Ben:  Yeah. No, it’s pretty straight forward. The barbell squat and the barbell dead lift. So, compared to any other ab exercise that exists on the face of the planet including the as seen on TV ones, when you look at electromyographic analysis of core muscle and lower back muscle involvement across the board, squat and dead lift.

Brock:  I understand the dead lift for sure and the squat I guess if you’ve got a barbell across your shoulders that helps a lot. But I thought, what about a pull-up?

Ben:  Nope. Nope.

Brock:  Weird.

Ben:  Yeah, and it’s simply because of the spinal loading and the breathing and the internal pressures that are created when you squat and you dead lift properly. So, and you know, by the way, just for folks who are listening who really don’t know how to squat or dead lift the right way, probably the best 2 books I could point you to for movement patterns, for the squat and the dead lift one, is “Starting Strength” by Mark Rippetoe. Really good book. And the other one is “Becoming a Supple Leopard” by Brian Mackenzie. No, Brian MacKenzie’s the crossfit guy, Kelly Starrett. Yeah, exactly. So check those books out. Starting Strength and Becoming a Supple Leopard. Best 2 ab exercises, squat and dead lift. Do them right, get your flat stomach, get your beach body, and yeah, that’s it for the studies.


Special Announcements:

Brock:  So Thailand. I can’t hardly wait.

Ben:  Yeah, that’s right.

Brock:  I’m going, I don’t know. I’m excited.

Ben:  The 2013 Thailand Triathlon Advanture, I’ve got 3 spots left in that and for the, for the pre-camp that we’re doing, where we’re  gonna be basically going over health, nutrition, running, swimming, cycling, efficiency, economy, skill-development, everything, rather than like a beat you up and spit you out style camp. That one, we’ve got 5 slots left in so either way, if you wanna get in on the whole thing, you know what, I’ll tell you right now what the expenses associated with this whole thing are but you could also go to pacificfit.net/Thailand. Pacificfit.net/Thailand and if you wanna get in, it’s this winter it’s gonna be freakin’ awesome, we’re gonna be there, depending on how long you wanna go. You can go anywhere from 1 up to 3 weeks but it’s just a straight up $400 fee and I take care of everything for you, hotel discount, airport transfers, bike transfers, boat transfers, restaurant reservations, everything. And then for the pre-camp that we’re doing, the 5-day pre-camp, 800 bucks if you want a roommate, 1100 dollars if you want a king-sized room all to yourself. It’s living a luxury, all-inclusive. So ultimately, like it may sound expensive to some folks, but that’s actually, if you look across the board, that’s actually a dirt cheap camp.

Brock:  What does ‘it’s some luxury’ do?

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  It’s not only nice, not only the area beautiful but those hotels are impeccable.

Ben:  Yeah so if you wanna get started in triathlon, and kinda kick things off with a really fun bang, or if you want to basically get faster, learn how to do it the right way and also come to hang out and party with some of the funnest folks in the planet, come on down to Thailand so check that out. We’ll link in the show notes. And then….

Brock:  I’m not gonna tell them about the hills and the, during the triathlon.

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  ‘Cause that will scare them off.

Ben:  Yeah, it’s not, you know, the 2 races that we do during that adventure, they’re not easy but they’re dang fun and yeah, it’s totally worth going. You don’t have to be like a pointy-headed triathlon freak to be able to do this stuff, it’s just, yeah it’s a blast. Even if you’re just getting started, check that out. Pacificfit.net/Thailand. And then the other thing is that on July 10th, what is it?

Brock:  12th.

Ben:  On July 12. So I am forcing my wife right now to log her diet using the USDA, the free USDA tracking tool, the diet logging tool. And she’s logging it and we’re gonna sit down and do like a full-on how to analyze your nutrition workshop where we’re gonna teach you anything that you’re looking for, the best tracking tools, the best logging tools, how to make sense of what you see and basically how to know if you’re getting enough micronutrients, macronutrients, everything. Like, I’ve been logging my personal diet and I’ve been putting it out to members of my inner circle and it’s interesting. I am at 80% fat intake right now.

Brock:  Nice.

Ben:  20% protein, and 10% carb. And I’m about 3500 to 4000 calories a day and my total carb intake, I actually thought it was close to like 150 grams per day but I’m actually down around depending on the day, 50-100 grams of carbohydrates a day. And it’s really interesting. The difference from what you think that you’re eating and what you’re actually eating. Whether it be like macronutrients or micronutrients or whatever. Like I get way more sodium than I thought too. Like I’m up at about 6000 milligrams or so of sodium a day, which for a lot of people, you know, it’s like shocker, high blood pressure, whatever.

Brock:  Yeah, that’s like 6 times what is recommended. 1500 is the recommendation.

Ben:  Yeah, my blood pressure’s…. Yeah my BP is like 110 over 60 and so, if you do the right kind of salt, it’s not the aluminum caked table salt that you tend to find in most places. You know I use a really really high quality, I use an Aztecan sea salt, it’s not even a Himalayan and it’s a new one that I found and I’ll be emailing pretty soon all my newsletter subscribers about that particular Aztecan sea salt that I’m using but it’s cool stuff so. Anyways though, that whole webinar that we’re gonna do is for our inner circle members. So if you’re not yet part of the inner circle, 10 bucks a month, the best 10 bucks a month you’ll ever spend unless you happen to find something like I don’t know.


I guess if you live in Thailand, where you can get 90-minute massages for 10 bucks. That’s probably a better 10 dollars so, but if that’s not the case….

Brock:  It doesn’t last as long.

Ben:  Yeah. There you go. And we have happier endings inside the inner circle. So anyways.

Brock:  I’m biting my tongue.

Ben:  Go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/innercircle, get in that workshop and bottaboombottabing. I think that’s about it.

Voice over:   At first glance, triathletes appear to be a pretty fit group. At least with clothes on. But it’s pretty common for triathletes to have tiny arms, a thin and weak neck, a stick-like midsection and a body that’s just too skinny. But just imagine, if your arms were cut and defined, your chest and shoulders were ripped, your waistline was tapered like a v, your stomach was flat and hard, and your legs were sleek and curvaceous, in other words, why don’t you have the ultimate triathlon body? Now you can! Learn how to swim, bike, and run fast and look incredibly sexy doing it. Go to tri-ripped.com to start today. That’s tri-ripped.com.

Listener Q & A:

Fiona:  Hi Ben and Brock, it’s Fiona from Massachusetts aka FitBritMom. I wondered if you could give me your expert opinion on cissus extract for managing and maintaining good joints and bone health as well as weight management. I work out about 5-6 days a week mainly running and I’m looking to do my 2ndhalf-marathon in the fall. The big 40 is right about the corner, next year and I have family history of arthritis in the feet and knees so I’m looking for anything that can help me definitely dodge that and help me run, bike, and train the way that I’m used to doing right now. If you have any brands that you could recommend for cissus or if you think that it’s a complete waste of time, is there anything else that would be good to take or any foods that I should be really eating to really help with the bone and joints and muscle maintenance and repair after I’ve been training. I’d really love to hear your feedback. Thanks so much I absolutely love the show, as you already know, and you and Brock are just the best. Thanks so much.

Brock:  Hey, it’s FitBritMom.

Ben:  FitBritMom who actually sent in….

Brock:  She wrote an awesome iTunes thing.

Ben:  Yeah, she wrote us an iTunes review and I actually sent her a killer care package the other day for that. Any, by the way, anybody who leaves an iTunes review, if we choose your review and read it at the end of the show, and I do have a good one picked out for the end of this show, then we send you a pretty sweet care package. So I send out a t-shirt, a book, a bunch of supplements so cool stuff. Definitely it’s a good reason you leave a review and frankly, not a lot of people leave reviews so there’s a pretty good chance that you’re gonna get some pretty cool stuff if you leave a review. So.

Brock:  Way better than the lottery.

Ben:  Yeah. So there you go. Way better than the lottery. Okay so.

Brock:  Back to her question. Cissus extract.

Ben:  Cissus.

Brock:  Cissus extract for the joint health.

Ben: Yes, cissus is originally marketed as a joint supplement and it’s kinda popular kinda like in the MMA crowd. Because it does have a little bit of efficacy in terms of its ability to suppress joint inflammation and joint pain and there are some decent human studies behind it that show that it has some anti-osteoporotic effects and some bone regeneration abilities. It specifically can upregulate what’s called your osteoblactic activity or your ability to kinda create new bone cells so yeah, it’s got some decent research behind it. It also has been researched specifically in obese or overweight individuals and there is some evidence that when you’re taking it right up around in the range of 300-500 milligrams per day that you can actually see some decent reductions in body fats and there have been specifically studies where they’ve taken obese or overweight individuals and done a placebo trial vs. a trial with the cissus extract and found some pretty good weight reduction.


There are some confounding variables in those studies like they were using some of these fat loss cocktails that are like cissus combined with green tea and b-vitamins and stuff like this but overall, it seems that there may be some anti-obesity effects, definitely some anti-osteoporotic effects and some bone regeneration abilities. You know, the unfortunate thing though is, when you’re talking about arthritis, that’s different than just bone density. I mean, in many cases, arthritis can be more related to auto-immune issues or just maybe a whole body inflammation more than it can be related to something necessarily like low bone density. So you know, if we’re talking about you know, joint pain due to like low bone density, or like even stress fractures, things of that nature, you know, there may be some efficacy to using cissus. There may be some efficacy to using it for fat loss especially if you’re obese or overweight. But I would recommend that before you turn to something like that, first of all, you get your diet dialed in. I would highly recommend you check out the website inflammationfactor.com and that was started by Monica Reinagel, a friend of the show who spoke at out Super Human Conference. She’s known as the nutrition Diva on iTunes and what this inflammation factor website is is it rates the food based of its inflammatory or specifically, it’s pro and it’s anti-inflammatory potential. And certain foods have some levels of pro-inflammatory like say like blueberry for example. The sugars and the fructose and some of those types of compounds in the blueberry, technically pro-inflammatory. While the anthocyanins, the flavonoids and the polyphenols and stuff like that in a blue berry are anti-inflammatory. So blueberry has a certain score on this scale of inflammation. And if you look at other food, you know, certain foods have a higher inflammation factor, certain foods have a lower inflammation factor, so if we look at some of the foods that have the higher factor rating, and actually it’s kinda confusing because a very high IF reading means that it is better for fighting inflammation but some of the foods that have a very high IF rating, they’re better for fighting inflammation would be garlic, peppers incidentally, unless you like have Hasimoto’s disease or something like that. Sometimes peppers can aggravate stuff like that. Parsley is really good, dark leafy greens of course like kale and mustard greens and spinach. Onions are good, salmon, like a good wild caught fatty fish, avocados rank really high and then apple cider vinegar is another one so…..

Brock:  You just made the perfect salad.

Ben:  Or the smoothie. I don’t know if I’d throw in peppers or garlic into a smoothie myself but yeah. Perfect salad. You know, get some kale, dark leafy greens, some parsley, some onions, get some fish and avocado in there, use a little apple cider vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, dressing, toss that bad boy back every day, there you go. But yeah, I mean look at your diet first when it comes to family history of arthritis because whenever we’re looking at family history, we’re talking about genetics right. And genetics are like a stick of dynamite so you’re walking around with a stick of dynamite but unless you actually light it, you know, and cause it to explode, it’s not really as much of an issue. And so you light the dynamite, pardon my violent analogy.

Brock:  I like it.

Ben:  So yeah, don’t go eat at McDonald’s.

Brock:  Don’t blow yourself up.

Ben:  Unless you wanna blow yourself up. So and then regarding the fat loss components of cissus, you know, I’m personally, when we’re talking about fat loss supplements, a bigger fan of supplements that tend to have an effect on insulin and blood sugar and so probably the number 1 fat loss supplement that I recommend to just about everybody, the one that I personally use even though I’m not fat per se, it’s what I use to control my blood glucose levels because frankly like, I have many many nights of the week where I would do like dark chocolate and red wine. You know, I talk about how I’m eating 50-100 grams of carbohydrates on a daily basis. Honestly…..


Brock:  That’s a lot.

Ben:  Yeah, honestly, like that’s a lot of it. Is at night or sometimes, have a little bit of white rice or whatever with dinner so I use bitter melon extract, one of the best blood glucose and insulin stabilizers that you can use. I basically pop 2 capsules 30 minutes before dinner and I swear by that stuff, I mean like it’s so good. It’s similar to the diabetic drug Metformin in terms of its efficacy and dumping your blood glucose values down like if you take it before workout, you frankly have a crappy workout because it shoves your blood glucose levels so low so it’s one of those things that you time prior to a meal and like, I swear by this stuff, I literally like almost every single day now, before dinner pop 2 of those 30 minutes before dinner and I swear by it for fat loss and stuff like that. There are some other like over at Pacific EliteFitness, I have a fat loss pack that I designed and it’s a combination of that and basically kinda like a lean muscle enhancer and then a little bit of a metabolism booster like a green tea extract with some tyrosine and some other insulin controlling compounds like chromium and vanadium. You know, if you’re trying to lose weight as quickly as possible, it’s like, I think it’s like 120, 130 bucks, something like that for a month long supply so it’s not like chump change but that, if you’re trying to like step up fat loss as fast as possible and you wanted, you’re already exercising, you’re already eating an anti-inflammatory super healthy diet, you wanna throw in the extra 5% or whatever, you know that’s where something like that comes in but as far as the best fat loss supplement, I would say that bitter melon extract beats the pants off cissus in terms of the research I’ve seen on it and also my own personal experience with it. So.

Steve:   Hey Ben, Brock. This is Steve from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Love your show. My question is about meniscus injuries and tears and surgeries and generally, it always seems to come down to after you’ve had a meniscus surgery. It’s now bone on bone. You have less meniscus hence less cushioning so just don’t run. I have to run, the other alternative I guess, at one point in my life I was, I drank a lot. Did some drugs. I really really had a bad lifestyle and I was about 200 pounds and I started running and changed my life and within 5 months, I’d ran a half-marathon and lost 60 pounds. All in all, running became my new passion. Maybe a little too much, from one addiction to the next and next thing you know, I was doing 100k trail races and required meniscus surgery ‘cause I had a tear. First surgery did not go too well, I could not get back to running afterwards so I sought second opinion and I had a second surgery from a different doctor so I did take your advice and got a McDavid leg brace. I did do, you know, a lot of strengthening, a lot of squats, a lot of lunges, a lot of dead lifts, you know, I kept out my stretching and my rumble roller. I did some acupuncture to help engage my glutes, to help take some of the pressure off the leg and the knee. But at the end of the day, you know, it’s still bugging. I really just want to be a good example for my kids to grow up and realize that you know, running can be good. I promise I won’t abuse it again.

Brock:  Wow, 2 knee surgeries and still can’t run. I don’t like your odds Steve.

Ben:  Yeah. Yeah, bone on bone. This is why all runners eventually become cyclists right. It’s like you get to a point and I mean like, I’m gonna be honest with you, like with me doing Ironman in as much as I’m doing Ironman and stuff like that, like, I know that I’m gonna have some knee problem and some joint issues later on in life if I keep on doing what I’m doing. I mean like the human body was not really kinda like you know, we just haven’t adapted the ability to be ultra pound the pavements so to speak or run on concrete whatever for long periods of time and you know, there is some hope in terms of some of these newer strategies that are emerging especially when it comes to like stem cells and prolotheraphy. Those would probably be the 2 biggest areas of hope for you when it comes to this stuff and so…..

Brock:  And when you say stem cell, you don’t like mean the ones that are illegal that you have to pull from a fetus, you mean the ones that you know, the ones that they’re pulling at your own fat.

Ben:  Well I mean, and I’m kinda telling in an ethical line here, either. I mean if you go to Europe or Asia where you can get your hands on embryonic stem cells, you can go there to medical clinics and get those injected and there is some evidence that they can do things like literally regrow areas of damaged cartilage and tendons and ligaments but you can also harvest very very similar stem cells from fat cells.


You can harvest them from bone marrow and do basically what’s called an autologous stem cell injection and we’re not talking about cheap stuff here but you know, if you want to pull out all the stops and just try the last possible thing for you to be able to run, that’s an option. Prolotheraphy which is kinda similar, that’s the injection of like a sugar solution or you know, pretty much anything that’s gonna introduce mild amounts of inflammation into that joint area and potentially upregulate healing. That’s another option as well. And there are even, I talked about this recently in a blog post over at bengreenfieldfitness.com. They also make compounds that supposedly upregulate your own production of stem cells. You know, such as celergen is one compound. That’s like a cellular marine complex combined with collagen. There’s another one that’s basically marine phytoplankton, which, for lack of a better word is just like gooey liquid green algae and that’s another example of something that supposedly upregulates your natural stem cell formation but ultimately like in a case like this where we’re talking about pure bone on bone, ultra runner, 2 meniscus surgeries, you know, you probably have to go over more of the injectibles. We’re talking about a pretty sizeable investment, you know, buying a plane tickt, going to Asia or Europe and doing like a full-on injection and like you know, flying down to Florida, down to David Minkoff’s LifeWorks Wellness Center down there and doing a bunch of prolotheraphy with a guy like that. You know, if it was me personally, I would start to consider the fact that you know, there may be other things that could keep you happy other than running. You know, go buy a killer road bike, you know. Go pick yourself up at trek Madone or you know, grab one of these Elliptigos. I use my elliptigo  a bunch and for me, like anytime I wake up and for me it’s a run day, and my joints are sore or I know I’m gonna be running with poor biomechanics and potentially causing more damage than good, I just hop on my elliptigo and it’s a total geek fest and I get these like, you know how like one guy in a Harley Davidson passes another guy and they have their secret wave.

Brock:  Yeah they have their nod or the one-finger wave.

Ben:  Yeah, or you know, 2 guys who see each other in pick-up trucks, you know, it’s the one finger or the nod or whatever. You know, when I’m riding my elliptigo down the trail, it’s similar. Like the people on like the geeky homemade like recumbent bikes, or the folks who are like you know, doing like the like the weird little rollerblades ski thing using the poles down the trail. Like anybody doing anything that’s mildly or remotely just geeky or nerdy or whatever, I get the nod from those folks when I’m on my elliptigo so. So slightly nerdy but still kinda cool you know, that’s another option. If you wanna like get the feel of running without any of that joint pain, you know, you’re doing a lot of things that are right. You know, strength training for your legs and your glutes, working on like, the vastus medialis muscle to ensure that your quadriceps are in the position where they’re able to stabilize the movement of your kneecap or your patella. You know, mobility work would be especially important. It sounds like you’re doing some foam rolling, your bracing it, you know, you’re probably to the point where you either need to spend some big bucks and go to some stem cell or some prolotheraphy or else just like you know, turn to some alternatives to running, and some other things that kinda kinda hit that dopamine receptor that running is giving you, you know, cause it is kind of a chemical addiction that can be hard to break and you know, so you may also need to whatever. Learn how to play the banjo or have more sex or something like that. Or do both at the same time. Potentially.

Brock:  Potentially.

Ben:  We all know that playing a banjo leads to better sex anyways so.

Brock:  I can attest personally.

Ben:  So anyways Steve, you know, it may just be an issue here of kinda moving on from running or you know, trying something a little bit more hardcore in terms of recovery here so.

Eric:  Hi Ben and Brock. I’m Eric from Golden Colorado. I’ve been a keto athlete for the past year now and my questions regarding all the blood sugar hacks. Is there any point in me doing a lot of cinnamon and bitters to regulate blood sugar if I’m keto anyways?


Wondering if that’s what Ben’s gonna do and also, wondering if you have noticed many poor odor coming out of your mouth. Yeah, the ketogenic breath. Kinda interested in that. Thanks, bye.

Ben:  You know, this is an interesting question ‘cause I just got on talking about how I try to suppress my own blood glucose levels with something like that MPX 100 and you know, if you were to, so I use those Metron Breath test tubes for ketosis where I breathe into that tube for 30 seconds and it, based off of your breath levels of ketosis or your breath levels of you know, acetone and a lot of these byproducts of ketosis will tell you whether or not you’re in ketosis and that actually is that breath issue that he refers to. You know the production of acetone from the breakdown of what’s called the aceto acidic acid that’s pretty common when it comes to your body actually producing this ketogenic breath. I’ve personally found from my own experience, and the experience of some folks that I work with, getting into ketosis that that tends to subside. I suspect because the body is doing a little bit better job generating ATP rather than generating acetone from the breakdown of aceto acetic acid and so your ketone breath tends to kinda like become less and less of an issue the longer you’re doing low carb or the longer you’re in ketosis. But I certainly notice this in myself that in every now and again, and especially of you’re doing a ketogenic diet, when you wake up in the morning, after that overnight fast, it’s, it can be pretty noticeable. But the thing is, the reason that I mention this was like a lot of people will just wake up and will already kinda be in ketosis and you know, when I use that ketone breath measurement in the morning, I’m consistently in kind of a ketonic state when I wake up in the morning. And as soon as you go through your day and you start dumping whatever protein which is going to potentially get to turn into glucose or spike insulin levels or you get mild doses of carbohydrate here and there, you’re kind of at the point where you’re pulling yourself out of ketosis throughout the day and there are little hacks that you can use you know what Eric refers to as blood sugar hacks to actually kinda stabilize your insulin levels and result in a lower spike in blood sugar. So that bitter melon extract that I talked about, that’s an example of one. Cinnamon would be another. These are all the things you would want in your blood stream prior to eating that high-protein or high-carbohydrate meal. Okay, or you know, during, if you have to but preferably, rather than taking that stuff in what’s called a postprandial state, you take it prior to the meal. So cinnamon works really well. A decent amount.

Brock:  So just like, like a half hour before the meal or does it have to be like hours?

Ben:  Half hour-ish is a pretty good rule. But cinnamon, you know, you’re looking at decent amounts of cinnamon like 1-2 teaspoons of cinnamon. My wife actually, when I told her we were out of cinnamon the other day she’s like ’what the hell?’ She’s like ‘I just bought cinnamon.’ I’m like ‘I’m using,’ I’m like ‘I’m doing ketosis. I’m using a lot of cinnamon right now.’ So cinnamon, the bitter melon extract, there’s some evidence that vitamin c may have a pretty decent effect on the insulin as well so like the whole food, Vitamin C source that you could get off at Amazon or whatever. You know, a good 46 grams which is a lot of Vitamin C.

Brock:  So it’s the little fizzy Vitamin C caplets you can buy in the grocery store.

Ben:  You know, those typically have about 1 gram or so, so if you were to do like you know, a handful of those, that could get spendy, but that could be an option as well. I get spendy and….

Brock:  I have a feeling they’ve got a lot of sugar in them.

Ben:  Fizzy and messy. They’ve just got a lot of other stuff in them so yeah, I would go just like whole foods vitamin c source. Fiber, of course, but there are some issues that go hand in hand with fiber that we’ve talked about with the fiber doctor before on this show where if you amp up fiber too heavily it can cause some issues like diverticulitis and impacted bowel and you know, affected nerve endings in your colon and eventually lead to some digestive damage so you wanna be careful with these like high fiber supplements like metamucil and psyllium extract and stuff like that. That’s not the best way to control sugar levels in my opinion but you know, mild doses of fiber like your kale smoothie with some spinach and some colored greens in the morning, that type of stuff for sure. Apple cider vinegar, a couple of tablespoons of that, take them before a meal, can really help control your sugar levels and that’s again kind of a cheap fix you could use along with an option like cinnamon or bitter melon extract but certainly, any of these things that are going to make you more insulin sensitive or keep your blood sugar levels from going up are going to, by their very nature, ensure that you are utilizing fatty acids more than if you’ll then using glucose as a fuel.


So I’m definitely a fan of those kinds of hacks per se. And then of course, you know, during exercise, when you need to keep your energy levels up, something like the SuperStarch that I’ve talked about before like the long molecular weight chain carbohydrate like the UCan SuperStarch. I don’t use that stuff very much. I pretty much only use it now when I’m racing just because I kinda, I just don’t like to use engineered fuels and powders and sports drinks and stuff like that period. I just don’t like to do it. However, that stuff can do a pretty good job keeping you in a state of ketosis when you’re out exercising for long periods of time. I wanna make sure though that you know that a lot of these longer chain high molecular weight carbohydrates, and this is something you don’t hear about a lot but that I’ve had a lot of people that I’ve worked with experienced, after a long term use of this stuff like during a say like half-Ironman or a marathon or an Ironman. You use this stuff for long enough and any residuals that’s left over in your digestive tract tends to ferment pretty damn rapidly and you get like this….

Brock:  I know what that means….

Ben:  This SuperStarch gas and bloating basically. So, I have also, when we’re talking about biohacks, I found a way to keep that from happening completely. And I use this stuff called….

Brock:  Cork?

Ben:  Yeah! And then your head explodes. I use this stuff called CharcoCaps and they literally is a brand called CharcoCaps and it is it’s like a homeopathic anti-gas remedy but essentially, charcoal, when you consume it, it literally like covers the extent of a football field when you dump this stuff in your body. In terms of it’s absorptive capacity, you know, it’s a tiny little capsule but it’s absoroptive capacity is literally like the size of a football field. So CharcoCaps, it’s a homeopathic anti-gas remedy. It’s got like a little bit of clubbed moss in it which is a homeopath for bloated abdomen and trapped gas. That’s actually interesting. Clubbed moss is also a neurotropic smart drug but there’s not a bunch of that in there. It’s got a vegetable-based charcoal, it’s got a little bit of bark in there, it’s got a little bit of sulfur in there and it just basically like soaks up all these stuff and I found that in any situation where I’m consuming a food that would tend to normally promote gas that this stuff just like knocks it out so you know, if you’re gonna use something like SuperStarch, I definitely recommend those Charcoal Caps or something like that and we’ll put our Amazon link to those in the show notes for you but yeah, that’s what I would do.

Brock:  And if you happen to accidentally swallow some household cleaner, take a bunch of that.

Ben:  That’s right.

Brock:  Save yourself a trip to the hospital.

Ben:  Good for food poisoining, good for consuming prior to eating meats where you don’t know the source of the meat, you know, stuff like that so yeah. Food poisoning, anything like that so. Foshizzle.

Brock:  I was kinda kidding when I said that.

Bob:  Hi Ben this is Bob. Just recently started getting back into triathlons and I get Ironman Texas on May 18th and ended up in the medical tent due to some breathing problems and they told me that I had EID exercise-induced bronchio-spasms and so they suggest that I go see a doctor. I just wanna know if you have any knowledge about that and what I could do to deal with this problem. I took some Benadril, that seemed to help but I don’t want to have to start taking Benadril or inhalers to every race I do so if you have any information on that, that’d be great. Thanks.

Brock:  Exercise-induced bronchio-spasms. Wow.

Ben:  Do you know who Bob is? I actually, you weren’t on the first Thailand Triathlon Adventure we did?

Brock:  No.

Ben:  But Bob and Bob if you’re listening in, I hope this does not embarrass you, but Bob was the guy who went to Thailand with us and liked it so much.

Brock:  The guy that broke his neck?

Ben:  No, he didn’t break his neck. That was somebody else.

Brock:  There was somebody who broke his neck. I’m not sure.

Ben:  He moved there and like and I think he had a Thai girl and just like moved to Thailand 2 years after he went ‘cause he liked Thailand so much.

Brock:  He lived the dream.

Ben:  Yeah, he lived the dream. Bob’s also the guy who did like, he did something like 16 Ironmans, 1 year just like to see how many Ironman triathlons he could do but ultimately, it’s a really interesting question that Bob asks especially regarding this exercised-induced bronchio-spasms because, you know, it’s something that we’ve talked about a little bit on the podcast before kinda the link between food and asthma and I’ll link to the podcast that we did, we had a podcast episode that we did with Doctor David Minkoff about this stuff and the idea behind it is that if you have a diet that is comprised of a lot of food that can cause something like an immune reaction, you upregulate your sensitivity to airborne pollutants and pollens and things of that nature. And exercise-induced asthma tends to be a really big deal. One of the…..


Brock:  So if you drink like a glass of milk, and then a couple of days later you get exposed to a whole bunch of pollen, you could react to a lot more severely.

Ben:  Yup. And there have been studies that have looked at folks especially like vegan, like plant-based diet, that athletes, and they tend to require fewer asthma meds and one of the big reasons for that is due to milk allergies which you know, of you’re vegan, you don’t drink milk. So there are specific antibodies in milk that trigger allergic reactions in people like, and it’s different than lactose intolerance or just like gas or general aversion to milk products. It is, these specific antibodies in milk that cause these allergy-like symptoms and you know, the reason for that kinda gets a little bit complex but essentially there are 2 different arms of your immune system that can get out of balance. One is called your TH1 immunity and one is called your TH2 immunity. And TH1 immunity is responsible for your normal reaction to anything in the environment so if you see like pollen and you’ve seen, maybe you’ve seen like magnified pollen in books, these big, they’re like these big circular balls if you watch, whatever, you know, “Honey I Shrunk The Kids” way back in the day where the bees carrying around these huge balls of pollen but if your TH1 is working pretty well, you’re gonna breathe in millions of particles of this pollen and you don’t even know about it because your TH1 immunity just like deals with it and TH1 is everywhere in your body that gets in contact with your environment so you’ve got TH1 immune cells in your skin, in your eyes, in your tears, in your saliva, in your mucus secretion, and your digestive organs, and pretty much anywhere that is touching the external environment. Now, what happens is that, there are kind of 2 situations where you can aggravate or shut down TH1 and cause the 2nd arm of immunity, this TH2 immunity to go into overdrive or become hyperactive as it tries to compensate for the disabled TH1 immunity. And the 2 ways you can disable TH1 are number 1, through an auto-immune reaction to a food that you’ve eaten, and in most cases it is common foods that tend to be immune system irritants. Wheat and dairy are the 2 biggies. Although you could get tested, you could do what’s called the antibody test to see if there are compounds that might also cause an auto-immune reaction and then the other thing that can cause kind of a disabling of this TH1 immunity is sustained damage to the gut flora so for example, what’s called drug-induced dysbiosis where you been antibiotic regimen that is wiped out the good bacteria in your gut or created some kind of a gut imbalance or say something like a candida infection where you’ve got a yeast or fungus that is growing in your digestive tract due to the combination of usually a high carbohydrate intake and a lack of good gut flora and that could also lead to something called small intestine bacterial overgrowth where you literally have way way too much bacteria in your digestive tract, both good and bad and that can also essentially retard this TH1 immunity and cause this hyperactivity of the immune system and kind of an upregulation of exercise-induced asthma. So that’s how it works but really you know the fix is number 1, to be really really careful with some of these common immune irritants like milk and wheat and stuff like that. What I would recommend would be, there are a couple of different options. There’s an e-book out there, it’s really really good. It’s called the Auto-Immune Paleo Diet.


I’ll link to that in the show notes for Bob or anyone else listening in who’s dealing with exercise-induced bronchio-spasms and kinda wants to get off anti-histamines and stuff like that. The other one that I would look into is actually a program that I  personally put together that’s available on TrainingPeaks and for those of you who use TrainingPeaks and just want like an auto-immune diet that you can drag and drop into your TrainingPeaks training plan, and TrainingPeaks is just the online software that a lot of the athletes that I coach work with, I actually created a 4-week auto-immune protocol on TrainingPeaks that you could use as well. But an auto-immune diet eleiminates pretty much every single potential immune trigger that could be out there so….

Brock:  Nice.

Ben:  Hook yourself up with an auto-immune diet. We’ll put links on the show notes and then probably the best natural anti-histamine that I could recommend to you would be a fish oil. Like a really good, high quality fish oil. I recommend a brand called Super Essentials ‘cause it’s got astaxanthin and vitamin e. It’s a really good cold-processed triglyceride-based fish oil. That’s the best one out there, 4-6 capsules of that per day along with an auto-immune diet and specially reduce milk and wheat and stuff like that and yeah, whether or not you’re still galavanting about Thailand or not, that’s certainly the way that I’d go Bob, if I were you.

Anonymous:    Hi. I’m a 50-year old athlete that’s probably taking 20 milligrams of Adderall for about ADHD and because of stress, I’ve been taking half a milligram of Clonazepam for sleep. It’s not really high levels but I’m concerned. You’ve never talked about both amphetamine for ADD and how it affects performance positively, negatively and also, the benzoids for sleep and anxiety. And if there’s ways to potentially use other substances natural for the body than can wean some of these. Thanks Ben. Like to hear everything you say. Bye bye.

Ben:  Well this is actually kinda sort of related to what we just talked about with the auto-immune reaction because in many cases, these imbalances in gut flora are pretty related to ADD and ADHD simply because the majority of your neurotransmitters are created in your gut and so one of the first places you’d wanna start is specifically with your gut so not only addressing some of the auto-immune factors that I just talked about with Bob but also focusing specifically on nutrients that are gonna do a really really a good job healing the gut whether in children or in adults, typically leaky gut and damaged gut issues go hand in hand with personality issues, depression, ADD, ADHD. If your gut is broken, your brain is broken so that’s why I’m a big big fan in situations where you have depression, insomnia, ADD, you know, insert the ‘do not consider this as medical advice’ disclaimer here (Ben is not a doctor and the content provided on this podcast is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical or healthcare advice) but going after the gut flora would be big so not just insuring that you have wiped out bad bacteria by using some really good essential oils like 2 of my favorites are oil of oregano and golden seal for that purpose but then also getting you know, getting some glutamine, some bone broth, some colostrum, a good probiotic that preferably doesn’t have a lot of fiber, that doesn’t have a lot of prebiotic in it because bad bacteria can feed on a prebiotic so just like a basic probiotic that includes specific strain that’s really really good in this case called a saccharomyces boulardii. Sacchromyces boulardii we’ll be our word of the day. Yes. As a matter of fact, if I have another child, I’m gonna name them saccharo. Saccharo B. Anyways though, getting on some of those gut healing compounds and really going after the gut okay that’s number 1. Number 2, when it comes to ADD or ADHD, nutrient deficiencies are really common in persons with ADHD and they’ve done studies on this and they find that some of the common issues, and you can go out and get what’s called a spectracell analysis to look into a mineral or a vitamin or nutrient deficiency.


There’s another analysis that’s done by a company called MetaMetrix and it’s called Ion Panel. It’s expensive, it ranges anywhere from 800 to 1000 dollars depending on where you get it but it does, it’s a full test for fatty acids, amino acids, flavonoids, b-vitamins, minerals, phospholipids, everything. But people with ADHD or ADD, they tend to be deficient in minerals specifically the B-vitamin complex as well. Both fatty acids, the Omega-3 fatty acids and the omega-6 fatty acids, they tend to have anti-oxidant deficiencies and specifically deficiencies in a type of phospholipid called phosphatidylserine. And so targeted nutrient replenishment using like a supplementation protocol of a lot of these type of compounds can be really effective again in both kids and adults and much more effective than just using what’s called the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor and that’s more commonly known as the SSRI and that’s something very similar to Ritalin so Ritalin blocks the reuptake of dopamine or dopamine receptors specifically which allows for a big big increase in dopamine around the synapse of the neurons in your brain. Now anytime that you’re doing that, you’re needing more and more dopamine to create that same response because you’re just saturating your brain in dopamine so you get addicted or you need more and more Ritalin as time goes on which is why I’m not a big fan of that versus focusing on the natural rebalancing of the neuro transmitters using a combination of gut healing and replacing some of the minerals that I just got on talking about or some of the nutrients that I just got talking about. Another big big correlation with ADD and diet is insulin insensitivity potentially caused from the pancreas over creating insulin in response to high-sugar meals and there have been some studies that showed that people with ADHD have reductions in their ability to metabolize glucose properly when compared with non symptomatic people. So children with hyperactivity disorders, adults with ADHD etc. there tends to be some glucose metabolism issues there as well so in a situation like that, comes down to controlling insulin levels and really, like we already got into that earlier in this podcast. We talked about apple cider vinegar, bitter melon extract, sane amounts of fiber, cinnamon, you know some of these foods that tend to be really really stabilize you know blood glucose levels or restore insulin sensitivity. As far as any supplement and stuff like that goes, I gotta be really careful with this because some of this stuff is like, you know, neuro transmitters, if you just replenish like one like say like, if you give yourself a bunch of tyrosine which is a dopamine precursor and you’re trying to restore dopamine levels but you aren’t at the same time trying to take into account something like serotonin and you create a serotonin dopamine imbalance, you can basically just kinda yourself up and ‘cause temporary or even permanent neurotransmitter issues and so usually it’s pretty safe. If you’re going to try and replenish neurotransmitters naturally to use a basic ratio of a 1-10 ratio of what’s called 5-HTP to tyrosine and that’d be about 3000 milligrams of tyrosine per day and 300 milligrams of 5-HTP per day. And usually you split that to 3 daily doses. Okay, so a thousand of tyrosine and a hundred of 5-HTP 3 times a day. If you really wanted…..

Brock:  300.

Ben:  Yup. 3000 and 300. Yup. So 10-1 ratio of tyrosine to 5-HTP. Now if you really wanted to kinda step this up and get a little bit more scientific with it, there are specific supplements. There’s one called NeuroReplete and one called CysReplete and neuroReplete basically increases serotonin, cysReplete essentially is gonna help a little better more with dopamine and these again, you gotta be really really careful with these. I’m going to put a basic protocol in the show notes for this athlete. I’ll put them over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/245 but I would recommend, for really digging into this stuff and going after it hardcore, you find somebody who is certified in the Kalish method and Doctor Kalish is a practitioner from California I believe who’s really really good in helping to test and replenish neuro-transmitter levels.


He does have a book, if you’re kinda more like a self-learner, take charge person, I’ll put a link to his book in the show notes as well. It’s called The Kalish Method Book. You know, I help people out a little bit, I’m not a Kalish certified practitioner per se but, and again, I kinda gotta be careful with this in terms of like, you know, saying that managing medical conditions or whatever versus just kinda pointing people on the right direction but let’s just say that there are folks that I do consults with and work with who used to be depressed and aren’t anymore. I think I’m safe saying that. So, and kind of the same goes for ADD and ADHD so I’ll put a link to some of my recommended brain supplements, some of my recommended brain kinda fixing tools in the show notes. The only thing I did not mention here was that inflammation in the brain not only can be caused by things like gluten and wheat but can also be shut down by specific brain anti-inflammatories and that’s actually the way a lot of neurotropics work. You look at things like curcumin or turmeric extract, you look at things, you know, smart drugs like Aniracetam, for example or Provigil or even a little bit more natural one called phosphatydilcholine. All of these could cross the blood brain barrier and affect inflammation from a neural standpoint and so when you put something like that together along with an auto-immune diet, along with replenishing some of these minerals and vitamins and nutrients, you kinda get to the point where you can fix your brain, you can wean yourself off things like adderall, things like Ritalin, and you know, also these anti-anxiety drugs like Clonazepam and things like that and you know, get to the point where these stuff helps. Now, as far as performance, here’s the deal. Most ADHD or ADD medications are performance enhancers, you know, they work similar to an amphetamine. And so they improve focus, they can increase energy, and they can give you an illegal performance enhancing benefit which is why in most cases, they’re banned by the world anti-doping association unless you have a therapeutic use exemption. Meaning that you have been given a diagnosis by your physician, you’ve applied for a therapeutic use exemption through the World anti-doping Association and you have paperwork that shows that you’ve got clinically-diagnosed ADD or ADHD and therefore the clearability to be able to take something like you know, an Adderall prior to competition. If you don’t have one of those and you’re using one of these drugs, you can get technically get banned from participation in sanction events, get a medal taken away, get a podium spot taken away, get a cheque taken away, if you’re a pro. So yeah, you do need to be careful with this stuff too. It does definitely have a performance enhancing benefit, you know, but that’s why you even take something like Provigil which is common in the military, common on a lot of CEOs who are using like brain-enhancing supplements and you know, you wouldn’t want to toe the starting line in like an Ironman triathlon with that stuff because it gives you an illegal performance enhancing benefit so I always wonder, how many folks who are out there, because I know, you know, triathletes and marathoners and people like that have this go-go personality that tends to be associated a lot of times with ADD and ADHD and you know, I wonder, how many of those folks are on illegal performance enhancing drugs and don’t even know that they’re not supposed to be taking that stuff without a TUE (without a therapeutic use exemption) similar to like a testosterone cream or a testosterone injection. But ultimately, you know, the deal is, this stuff is addictive, this stuff eventually shuts down your own endogenous production of these good brain chemicals so there are better, more natural ways to control ADD and ADHD and hopefully some of the things that I have just told you are gonna punch you in the right direction. And so.

Brock:  Now as far as trying to come off of these drugs like somebody like Bob, not Bob, actually I don’t know this guy’s name. Our caller here asked about wanting to come off them. Is there, would it be dangerous to mix any of these with the drugs as he’s trying to wean himself off and you know, if you’re on SSRI, if he starts taking St. John’s Wort, they really warned against mixing the 2.

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  So that can be the sort of same problem here?

Ben:  Yeah, that’s the issue because it’s like you’re opening the floodgates and allowing for higher what’s called endogenous production of say something like dopamine or serotonin but at the same time, you’re inhibiting the reuptake of it so you’re just flooding your neurons specifically the synapses in your neurons even more and potentially aggravating an issue or you are essentially increasing the addictive potential of whatever pharmaceutical you happen to be on so that’s a situation where you wanna start with real real micro doses of some of these stuff or like I mentioned, go to like the Kalish Method website.


Again, we’ll link to that in the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/245. Find a practitioner in your area who through like urinary neurotransmitter valuations or some other method of tracking your neurotransmitter levels can kinda walk you through something like this because sometimes it can take a little bit of hand holding see, you gotta be careful with something like that for sure.

Brock:  Don’t just dive into it.

Ben:  Yeah. Those are the main things when it comes to ADD and ADHD. Those are the basics that I can think of off the top of my head. Sometimes I actually wonder if I have “ADD” or “ADHD” because I actually hop around quite a bit a lot of time focusing. My dad was like a serial entrepreneur and jumped between jobs really rapidly, I jumped around a bunch as well. You know, but at the same time, I can crawl up and read a book for like 6 hours and not even look up so I don’t know. I’m not really sure how that works but.

Brock:  I don’t know either.

Ben:  Yeah, anyways. Moving on.

Gina:    Hi Ben and Brock, this is Gina from California. I fell from a chair about 4 and a half weeks ago, was not drunk, I get that question a lot, and the chair back, with the hard chair back and when I fell it jammed up into my ribs, right into my breast and I guess I bruised with. The x-ray showed no fracture. Well, the other day I went to the chiropractor as I have been even since the ribs were hurting because I have lower back issues. I told him about my rib condition, that I was 4 and a half weeks out and he still suggested that I do an overall spine adjustment and I didn’t even know what that meant but I assumed he understood my ribs were recovering and were almost healed that he wouldn’t do anything to damage the area however, he adjusted me in a way I’ve never been adjusted before and basically re-injured my ribs. I thought I’d ask what you recommend in terms of healing as fast as possible. I have pretty slow recovery time and I really miss spinning, running, getting my heart rate up fast which obviously I can’t do when it’s hard to even breathe in or move my right side. So I really appreciate your insight and thanks again for the great podcast. Bye.

Brock:   Well Gina, we’ve all been there.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  Drunk.

Ben:  Some of us.

Brock:  Fall out of our chair.

Ben:  Yes. Some of us probably who had more alcohol involved than others. Yeah, it’s too bad about the chiro because you do have to be careful like I know a lot of chiropractic docs listening to the show and you know, and unfortunately most of them wants….

Brock:  Are you gonna piss them off?

Ben:  who I’ve spoken to who are listening to the show, they’re good chiros and they’re not too woowoo and they know what they’re doing but you know, chiropractic medicine is something that can tend to cause damage if you’re not careful. In more cases it’s the neck more often than the ribs, chiropractic docs who do a lot of neck manipulation. There is risk of some artery aggravation and eventually stroke that’s actually been well documented in medical literature where you know…..

Brock:  To the point where they actually, like the people who work in ER, if somebody comes in who doesn’t fit the profile of having a stroke from natural causes, that’s the first thing they ask, have you had a neck manipulation.

Ben:  Yeah. Really interesting study like last year, I believe it was in the New Zealand Medical Journal, you know, they reported like 700 cases of severe complications from chiropractic neck adjustments so you do need to be careful. You need to make sure that you kind of dig into the history of whoever you’re seeing for chiropractic manipulation and you understand the risks associated with it. I’ve gone in and had a rib adjustment before from a chiropractic doc that completely fixed an out of place rib that I had from bench pressing. This was back in the day where I was doing more kinda weight training and it helped a ton and you know, I can imagine that with the method that they were using which was essentially like slamming their body weight down into my rib, you know, after kinda palpitation to find the correct area, that they did not know what they were doing, they could certainly you know, cause an issue. A fractured rib or push a rib even more out of place.


Brock:  Get a whole lot worse.

Ben:  And I mean, you know, you’ve got this whole junction of your rib with the cartilage attached to the sternum and not only can that be extremely painful if it gets aggravated or strained or sprained but it can be moved around quite a bit more by impact or by chiropractic adjustments so as far as healing this thing up, if it’s a straight up fracture, I’m a big fan, and we’ve done an entire podcast, do we have something on stress fractures on the album, Brock, over at iTunes?

Brock:  No. We don’t.

Ben:  We’ll have to take our stress fracture piece. Yeah but basically, stress fractures, there are certain compounds that are really really good for bone healing and this could be like an hour long podcast but if I could tell you the number 1 compound that I found that really really helps that I recommend to mostly athletes that I work with who get on the verge of sustained, or get something like a stress fracture or a broken bone from an acute injury, it’s Lactoferrin. Lactoferrin is something that, similar to cissus can really upregulate that osteoblastic activity and enhance the healing response. I get it from Capraflex. This gluten-free formulation called Capraflex Pro which is like a blend of glucosamine, it’s got chrondroitin from like type 2 chicken collagen. It’s got cherry juice and turmeric and a bunch of proteolytic enzymes in there as well which help you do everything from you know, bounce back from surgery more quickly to break down fibrinogen from too much physical activity so that stuff has lactoferrin in it so that’s probably the number 1 thing that I’d recommend from a supplementation standpoint. From like a gear or injury management standpoint, I’ve seen some really good studies like randomized clinical trials of rib belts for just like simple fractured ribs and a rib belt is just like an elastic or a soft belt that you wrap around your mid section that just offers you a little bit of support. It goes a little bit higher up than like a back brace, kinda halfway between like a bra and a back brace basically like right there around your ribs.

Brock:  So what do they call it, a gusset?

Ben:  Gusset, corset, I don’t know.

Brock:  The thing like William Shatner wears to get slimmer.

Ben:  Yeah, exactly but I mean we’re talking 10, 20 bucks. Yeah you get that slimming effects, gorgeous slimming effects.

Brock:  Spanks for your ribs.

Ben:  Yeah. Eat as much as you want, buy a rib belt. Heck, buy a rib belt, buy a back belt, get a sport bra and just kinda hold everything in and go to town at the local steak house buffet. But no, seriously, like rib belts actually have some good research behind them in terms of significant amounts of pain relief and because there is a little bit of immobilization support going on there . You probably are looking into a little bit of healing enhancement too so that’s what I would be looking into as far as like some gear that you could use and also look into using some lactoferrin and then just be really really careful with impact-based exercise along with crazy chiropractors so.

Brock:  And don’t sneeze whatever you do.

Ben:  Yea, avoid sneezing.

Brock:  No sneezing.

Ben:  Avoid black pepper or any fat loss supplement that contains bioperine.

Brock:  Avoid playing the accordion as well.

Ben:  Yeah, the accordion tends to be a big issue. We got to a lot of our listeners that. It seems like it pops out time and time again, the accordion issue. Is your, do you happen to have your accordion there with you Brock?

Brock:  No, actually if you have a second I could run to the other room and get it.

Ben:  I tell you what, why don’t I read this week’s iTunes review and while I’m doing that you can go and get your accordion. Sound good?

Brock:  Okay. Here I go.

Ben:  So this week’s review is from retiredcollegeathlete2012 and here’s what he has to say on iTunes. I used to be a huge Jillian Michaels fan but over the last year, I made the shift to Ben Greenfield. I’m not a hardcore athlete, just an accountant that likes to be functionally fit. So glad I fell upon this podcast and website and hey Brock, you back with me? Alright, not yet. So retiredcollegeathlete2012, if you heard your review read on this podcast, then email me, [email protected]. There we go. And I’ve got some love to send your way. Hey Brock you missed the review but someone just said they’re cheating on Jillian Michaels. They left Jillian and came to us instead.


Brock:  Nice.

Ben:  Huge, huge. That reminds me by the way, I bought the Bob Harper Yoga DVD and it was…..

Brock:  I don’t know who that is.

Ben:  Bob Harper is Jillian, is his name Bob Harper? Jillian Michaels’ sidekick on the Biggest Loser?

Brock:  I have never seen that show.

Ben:  I’m pretty sure, anyways, he’s got a yoga DVD and it’s like hardcore yoga to rock music. And I can’t say I, I’m sure Bob’s a great guy but it was kinda silly. It was like yoga to rock music so not too…..

Brock:  Yeah, that seems interesting.

Ben:  But anyways though, the featured fitness podcast, retiredcollegeathlete2012, thanks for the review. If you wanna leave a review, you can go to iTunes, if you want I could be talking with an Italian accent, hey Brock.

Brock:  Please do.

Ben:  So it’s a little loud. It’s a little loud. Can you back of the microphone a little bit.

Brock:  That’s the thing about the accordion is it’s loud.

Ben:  Go ahead and I’ll take us out with my Italian accent.

Brock:  Alright.

Ben: Don’t forget to go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/love that’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/love and you too can spread the love about the Ben Greenfield Fitness. Get your spaghetti, your pasta, your linguine, we have some marinara sauce.

Brock:  I can’t believe that I’m laughing.

Ben:  Is the accordion Italian?

Brock:  Mine is the Camillo.

Ben:  Yeah it reminds me when my wife and I rode our bikes to Italy. We sat at the restaurant and we’re staring googly eyed at each other and drinking tea from Monte Pontiano Deo Brucco and eating our pastas smothered in cheese and also some other auto-immune triggers we talked about.

Brock:  Delightful.

Ben:  Then we go and ride our bikes off into the sunset hacking from exercised-induced asthma. Oh, that’s a good way to end the show so thank you for listening and go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/245. That’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/245  and get on the show notes and ‘til next time, have a wonderful week.



June 26, 2013 Podcast: What Are The Best Fat Loss Supplements, What To Do About Worn Cartilage, Controlling Blood Sugar During Ketosis, Natural Remedies for Exercise Induced Asthma, Does ADHD Medication Affect Performance, and How To Heal Injured Ribs.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right side of this page, click Ask a Podcast Question at the bottom of this page, Skype “pacificfit” or (if you hate the sound of your own voice) scroll down to the “Ask Ben” form.

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Special Announcements:

Next Month’s InnerCircle webinar – is officially scheduled for Friday, July 12, 6:30pm. Pacific time and is entitled: “Be Your Own Diet Sleuth“. You’ll get the in’s and out’s of analyzing and interpreting your own nutrition and food intake – and the best resources and tools to track your diet.

The brand new Ben Greenfield Fitness app – is your portal to all of Ben’s best fitness shows, special episodes, and videos in one convenient spot – including exclusive bonus content you won’t get anywhere else except inside this app!

2013 Thailand Triathlon Adventure with Ben Greenfield – details at pacificfit.net. Now including the pre-camp: It’s a “high end” triathlon training resort. Brand new facilities – check ’em out! We’re going to do coached sessions every day. It won’t be hardcore training as much as a focus on learning about nutrition, training, fitness, and how to “get the edge” in endurance, life and health!

Brand new BenGreenfieldFitness triathlon kits and clothing is available! Need a BenGreenfieldFitness triathlon suit or running/workout shirt? bgpromo13 is good for 20% off of anything.

If you’re looking for a topic we covered in the past – we have released the Ben Greenfield Fitness Top Hits, Vol. 1.


1.The Benefits of Fish vs. Fish Oil
2. The Best Ways to Stop Hair Loss
3. Increase Your Hematocrit & Oxygen Levels
4. Strengthen Your Immune System & Shorten the Duration of a Cold
5. Top 10 Ways to Boost Drive
6. Get Rid of Migraines Naturally
7. Become a Curvaceous, Lean, Ripped Female Athlete Without Destroying Your Health
8. Stop Side Stitches as Fast as Possible
9. Is It Possible for a Vegan to Be a Healthy Endurance Athlete
10. How Much Water Do You Really Need to Drink Each Day


Listener Q&A:

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

Fiona (FitBritMom) asks @ 00:21:39 – What Are The Best Fat Loss Supplements?
Could you give your expert opinion on cissus extract for joint health and weight management. She is currently training for a marathon, is turning 40 next year and has a family history of arthritis. Is cissus worth it or is there something else she should be taking instead?

~ In my response to Fiona, I reference joint support supplement Capraflex and also the Pacific Elite Fitness Fat Loss Pack. I also discuss Cissus Quadrangularis supplementsinflammation and the website InflammationFactor.com.

Steve asks @ 00:31:57 – What To Do About Worn Cartilage
He is a former overweight substance abuser turned ultra runner that has had meniscus surgery twice, wears a knee brace, foam rolls, has done all the strengthening exercises for his legs and glutes, has done acupuncture and still has knee pain. Feels like it is bone on bone. He really wants to be able to run again, is there anything else he can do? He really wants to set a good example for his kids and seems to think he will slip back into his previous life if he can’t run.

~ In my response to Steve, I mention “The Elliptigo“.

Eric says @ 00:39:38 – Controlling Blood Sugar During Ketosis
Is it necessary to do the blood sugar hacks (like using a lot of cinnamon and bitters) if you are in ketosis? And clearly another Eric Is also wondering if you have noticed the “ketogenic breath”?

~ In my response to Eric, I mention Bitter Melon Extract. I also mention Charcocaps and these Metron breath ketone measuring devices.

Bob asks @ 00:48:39 – Natural Remedies for Exercise Induced Asthma
Do you have any suggestions for some diagnosed with EIB (exercise induced bronchial spasms)? Benadryl seems to help but he doesn’t want to take that all the time.

~ In my response, I mention this asthma podcast with Dr. Minkoff. I also recommend the Autoimmune Paleo diet and this TrainingPeaks autoimmune diet. And the natural anti-histamine fish oil.

Anonymous asks @ 00:56:33 – Does ADHD Medication Affect Performance?
He is a 50-year-old athlete who takes 20mg of Adderall for ADHD and also .5mg Clonazepam for sleep and anxiety. He is wondering how these might be effecting his performance (for good or bad). Also, are there ways to use more natural substances to ween off of these medications?

~ In my response, I mention the GAPS diet for ADHD. I also mention my recommended Brain Supplements and Brain Add-Ons, including:

-500-1000mg Aniracetam combined with 1-2g Phosphatidylcholine, used sparingly before high mental demanding activities

-2-6g/day triglyceride based fish oil – recommend SuperEssentials

-Acetyl-L-carnitine – 500mg, 1x/day – recommend 1-2 servings “NutraRev” per day

-Alpha-lipoic-acid, 100mg, 1x/day – recommend 1-2 servings “NutraRev” per day

-For depression/lack of motivation – 3000mg Tyrosine + 300mg 5-HTP

-It is HIGHLY recommended that you do neurotransmitter testing before experimenting with these particular supplements, but for neurotransmitter balance (behavioral issues, depression, etc.), you can start with 4 NeuroReplete (to balance catecholamines and increase serotonin), twice daily (in the AM and at 4 PM) with 2 CysReplete (for L-Cysteine to increase catecholamine synthesis or when using D-5 Mucuna), three times daily (the first dose at noon). Read the Kalish Method book or talk to Ben before experimenting too much with this stuff.

Gina says @ 01:11:45 – How To Heal Injured Ribs
Fell off a chair and bruised (maybe fractured) her ribs (says she was not drunk). Went to a chiropractor, told him about her ribs and he still did a spinal adjustment and re-injured her ribs. What do you recommend to heal them as fast as possible – wants to get back to spinning, running, getting her HR up but can’t really breathe right now or move her right side.

~ In my response I recommend a Rib Belt.



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