Episode #290 – Full Transcript

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Biohacking, Podcast, Transcripts

Podcast #290 from https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/07/290-dizziness-during-exercise-combining-heat-acclimation-and-cold-thermogenesis-lucid-dreaming/


Introduction:  Episode #290 of Ben Greenfield Fitness: Dizziness During Exercise, Combining Heat Acclimation And Cold Thermogenesis, Can Eating Slow Increase Food Absorption, Lucid Dreaming Detox, How To Use Infrared Therapy and much more.

Welcome to the bengreenfieldfitness.com podcast.  We provide you with free exercise, nutrition, weight loss, triathlon, and wellness advice from the top fitness experts in the nation.  So whether you’re an Ironman triathlete, or you’re just trying to shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from bengreenfieldfitness.com.

Brock:  Only ten more episodes until episode 300!

Ben:  Boom! We’ll have to figure out something special to do. May you have a little party.

Brock:  We should start thinking now. I think we let 200 sort of slide by with minimal fanfare.

Ben:  Let’s have a party in our podcasting studios. We can invite everybody to my little home office and we can all pile in here. I think I could probably fit 2 or 3 fans in my office.

Brock:  I could fit probably 20 in mine.

Ben:  Our listeners might have small hips though. We could probably get more than that. So, I don’t know. If they’ve been taking our advice, they’re just…

Brock:  Their hips are tiny and tight!

Ben:  Lean and ripped! Fitness crazed! Speaking of fitness crazed by the way, I’ve been getting lots of tweets from people lately, Brock, who have been asking me about all of my endorsements of late of these fantastic testosterone boosting products that are…

Brock:  Yes! I’ve been curious about that myself. You seem to be endorsing a lot of questionable material.

Ben:  So, here’s the latest one. There’s an article by Ben Greenfield, apparently me. It starts off with like Thor swinging a hammer and …

Brock:  Yeah, that’s what I saw, Yeah.

Ben:  …the title is “The Latest Fitness Craze.” Labs have been secretly using to bulk up fast and then it’s got like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and it’s got Hugh Jackman and it is an advertisement – a really long advertisement apparently written by yours truly on how to use some called maximum shred and extreme deer antler which is made from extreme deer by the way…

Brock:  Extreme…

Ben:  These are the deer that wear beanies and gold chains. Boost natural testosterone levels of 240%, increase drive – not by 65% but by 66%.

Brock:  Ohh!

Ben:  Yes! Okay, for our listeners just to clear the air here. People are stealing, naming and posting articles around the internet about this testosterone boosting products that I do not endorse, I do not stand behind and I actually think are probably dangerous. So just, so you know. If you see an article out there on the internet that is written by me especially the one like a bunch of fake comments below that say, “Thanks Ben for this valuable info. I can’t wait to go and become a real man. Blah, blah, blah.” If you see this, take them with a grain of salt. I probably did not write any of these. If they appear on bengreenfieldfitness.com, then it’s likely that I did write something like that but…

Brock:  Or another reputable news source like The Huffington Post or the – what’s the other one – see right for, Triathletes.

Ben:  Generally, if it’s got a picture of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson on it and it looks like it came straight out of the muscle and fitness magazine, I probably didn’t write it. So, just to clear the air there, remember that it is possible on the internet for people to steal your identity which appears to have happened in this case. However, someone does try the extreme deer antler and you experience a boost in drive by 66 or even 67%, let us know and maybe Brock and I will have a new supplement to take.

News Flashes:

Brock:  So speaking of people tweeting you all the time, you do spend quite a bit of time on twitter.com/bengreenfield putting out all kinds of cool and awesome news flashes.

Ben:  That’s right.

Brock:  Like these 3 about to be sedated on.

Ben:  Tweet a week, I spend all day on twitter. You know, I actually have twitter turned off of my phone and everything and I have just put all push notifications turned off on my phone.

Brock:  Oh I hate push notifications if any app says, “Can you really allow push notifications?” like, No! Absolutely not!


Ben:  But I do tweet and I tweet out research studies ‘cause I read 40-50 different articles and journal research studies every morning and on this podcast of course I go and talk about some of the more interesting once. So, by the way if you want links to any of these studies or articles on about what we talk about, you can grab them and all the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/290. So, the first one was pretty cool. It was about tapering which I thought was interesting and tapering specifically by gold medalist and some of the best athletes on the face of the planet.

Brock:  Wait, it’s tapering when you like wrap the tape around your nose and pull it up until like a piggy face?

Ben:  No. It’s actually…

Brock:  Like scotch tape?

Ben:  Yeah, no it’s a consumption of tape worms for enhanced performance. No, it’s actually – it’s kinda laying off so that your body super compensates and absorbs all the fitness that you’ve been pouring into it. Some of the things are really interesting though. In this study – or it was actually an article that I linked to that was an analysis of the study. First of all, it delved into the realistic taper vs. the ideal taper. So on the ideal taper, you do this gradual step down reduction in training volume that’s very calculated and précised but it turns out that in most athletes, you’re doing like a bunch of qualifiers or a bunch of events leading up to your big event. Like, let’s take an ironman triathlete for example, like if they’re training for Hawaii ironman world championship, a lot of times they’ve get a bunch of races to do that year leading up to the event. That means that they might not have like a perfect taper going in to that event or like a Spartan athlete for example training for Spartan world championships might still have events that they’re doing leading up to that event. That means that they’re not going to be able to do a perfect taper. And it turns out that even at the professional level, this is the same thing that athletes have. So, what they find is that even though you normally see recommended the need to taper by bringing down volume about 30-40% in those last 2 weeks going into your big event like a world championship race or whatever your most important race is for the year. If you’ve been leading up to that point already tapering for other races that you’ve been doing like in the 4-6 weeks going in to that event, then it turns out that the taper is more like a drop of about 10%. So, what that means is that realistically you’re kind of like gradually doing at least mini tapers going into your event and it’s really interesting to see that even like on the professional athlete level, athletes are more like doing a series of mini tapers that gradually reduce their volume of the course of multiple weeks going into an event than just getting 2 weeks out of an event and tapering. It’s very, very few and far between athletes are actually doing just like one event that they do a major taper for. The other really interesting thing that I thought was kinda like a practical take away for folks was that it turned out that you get better results and it was what athletes are doing was they’re putting their rest periods in or done with most of their rest days by the time the race was 5 days away and then going into the race they’re actually doing a lot of high intensity interval training sessions and kind of like getting the body ready and ramping back up to training for those last 5 days. So it turns out that you’ve got some important race or marathon or event coming up – let’s say you’re 2 weeks out from the event, it would be about 2 weeks out that you would start thinking about reducing volume and giving your body some recovery and getting yourself to the point where about 5 days out from the event, you can gradually start amping back up your training intensity and  your training volumes so that you’re not stale going into the event. So it turns out that what you do, you know like 2 weeks up to 5 days from the event is more important from a tapering and fitness compensation standpoint than what you do in those last 5 days right before.

Brock:  So is that sort of more of mental thing then because they have shown physically that your body actually, like increases and fitness when you’re resting?

Ben:  I suspected that what it is the same phenomenon that causes people to feel kinda flat the day that they have their big event after taper and then like about 1-3 days after their event all of a sudden their bodies feel like rockstars. It’s basically starting your taper too late and the super compensation, muscle recovery, increase in blood volume, decrease in inflammation, all those cool things that happen during a taper basically won’t given a chance to happen because you started the taper too late. So, ultimately what it looks like is that if you’re gonna taper for an event or you’re somebody who’s kinda experiment of a tapering to see when you feel the best for a race or a big event,


what you may wanna do is start tapering earlier like 2 weeks out and then gradually start to amp your activity back up once you get a few days out from the race. Do a few little kinda high intensity interval sessions, things that would necessarily be considered laying around on the couch.

Brock:  Gotcha! Yeah, so you wanna see those benefits manifest themselves and then sort of do some activities that won’t necessary break you back down but they get you serve in fighting shape.

Ben:  Which is why it may make sense that you see a lot of – like when you and I go down and watch the ironman world championships this year in Hawaii, Brock, we’ll see some of the better athletes out there kinda going out and doing what appeared to be some hard workouts in those last few days going into the event, turns out that if they’ve actually been laying off for a long enough period of time going into that, that may be a pretty good way to go. So, we’ll link to that with that research study in the notes. Another kinda interesting one is that contrary to popular belief, being cold doesn’t give you a cold and there’s actually some pretty cool bulletproofing effects that happen in response to cold exposure. Now this one was near and dear to my heart because I right now speaking of tapering, I am tapering for one of the Spartan championship events that’s over in Washougal Washington this Saturday. So I’m a few days out from the event and I do a lot of cold thermogenesis when I’m tapering and there are 2 reasons why I do that. Number 1 is to shot down inflammation and number 2 is to burn calories because one common thing that happens when you taper is your appetite is just as high, you still wanna eat these fantastic meals and have your dark chocolate and red wine and everything but you can’t exercise to burn off calories or else you potentially could dig yourself into a hole and kinda be overworked in going into your event. So, I do about an hour of cold thermogenesis wearing a – what’s called a cool fat burner vest which is this vest that goes around my collar bones. You can check this out at coolfatburner.com but they’re basically like cold thermogenesis vests and then I wear this compression pants made by a company called a hundred and 10% and they have little sleeves in them, you can pack with ice. And so I just stand there during my first hour of emails and work in the morning and basically be shivering. Kinda cold! Helps to burn calories, helps to shut down inflammation, and it’s a cool little taper/lean body maintenance kinda strategy. But some people get concern about cold and the fact that going out and swimming in cold rivers or cold exposure might somehow be so stressful to the body that it could make you sick. And this was really an interesting article over at biohacksblog.com and this one was about the production of antioxidants and cold exposure. It specifically was talking about this research study where they took a bunch of cold water swimmers who where swimming about 5-10 minutes in ice cold water a day and they compared them to people who are just regularly exercising but not exercising using cold exposure. They found some really potent antioxidants were really upregulated in the cold water swimmers specifically some antioxidants that generally folks will pay a lot of money to take like glutathione and superoxide dismutase and another one called catalase and the body was actually making these churning them out in pretty high amounts in response to cold exposure. So, while extreme amounts of oxidative stress can occur with long term cold exposure? You know like I wouldn’t necessary recommend hiking across the Arctic in your underwear to make yourself bulletproof against colds. Doing this sure, like using cold thermogenesis like I just described, you’re doing a 5 minute cold shower in the morning and in the evening or even doing like 20 minute cold soaks a couple of times a week. There’s some pretty cool immune system enhancing effects that happen and remember that the production of some of these antioxidant enzymes does not just mean you’re gonna have a stronger immune system but it means you’re gonna be able to oxidize or to neutralize free radicals more effectively that build up from muscle injury. So, you could reduce soreness and enhance performance that way as well. So basically being cold is not gonna make you sick and if anything, it’s gonna make you more resistant to getting sick.

Brock:  Send this to all your grandparents everybody.

Ben:  That’s right. Along with this sweater.

Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  So, the other thing is –  I guess not a sweater, yes, and then a cool fat burner vest. The last thing is carbs – speaking of gaining weight. This was a pretty interesting journal article. It was published in 2012 but I just read it, I just saw this one.


The name of it or the idea behind it was that when you are eating what are called acellular carbohydrates, that can promote the formation of inflammation in your gut and could be one of the primary dietary causes of leptin resistance which can cause like appetite disregulation and the loss of the ability to mobilize fat for energy and also overweight and obesity. It was really an interesting study, they went into the concept that when you’re eating carbohydrates that don’t have a cell or that a relatively a cell deficient vs. cellular-filled carbohydrates like fruits and vegetables and plants and things like that, you get an upregulation of a specific molecule called lipopolysaccharide and lipopolysaccharide is part of the outer membrane of gram negative bacteria and what that means is it acts as an endotoxin meaning it can cause some metabolic derangement, autoimmune reactions, inflammations, stuff like that and the consumption of a lot of these carbohydrates that are acellular can actually cause these. So what this means is that if you step back and look at your diet, the majority of the carbohydrates that you eat should come from cell rich sources. So just to kinda give you an idea here – there’s actually a chart that has some of the more acellular carbohydrate sources. Rice cakes are one. Rice cakes are one of the  most cell void carbohydrate sources you can get, pretzels are another, crispy bread and crackers are another one, most whole-wheat cereals are very acellular which would be the type of carbohydrate you wouldn’t go after. Granola and granola bars are acellular, potato chips, white bread, popcorn, bran cereal, French fries, most pizzas and milk shakes and cheese burgers are also acellular.

Brock:  That’s pretty much all stoner food.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah but even some foods that you know some people think are just like okay, like rice cakes and popcorn. Yeah, they’re okay but at the same time they can have pretty good potential for producing these lipopolysaccharides. Now what would be a cellular type of food, we’re talking about like sweet potatoes, or cellular type of carbohydrates, sweet potatoes, ginger is really good, parsnip, pears actually are pretty high up there on a cell containing properties, most of the other fruits kinda come on down from pears, you’ve got kale – as being pretty high in the list of a cellular carbohydrate, carrots are another one. But look at it this way, if it appears to you to be something that was pretty recently living and it’s recognizable live form then in general that’s gonna be most fruits and vegetables and tubers that’s a cellular carbohydrate that would be or should comprise the majority of your carbohydrate intake. So I’ll link to this study ‘cause it goes into the whole science behind this but ultimately it comes down to eating cellular carbohydrates. Makes sure that your carbs were growing and I don’t know, barking or moving or meowing or something.

Brock:  Meow…

Special Announcements:

Brock:  So how much radiation are you picking up in your office right now?

Ben:  You’ll have to listen in to the last podcast to find out. Actually I have this new device – that’s measuring like EMF, radiation, I mentioned this in the last podcast – nitrates in my fruits and vegetables, humidity in my bedroom. Yeah, so it’s called the lapka and we just released a brand new interview with the guy who designed it and he kinda opens the kimono on the whole thing. So we released that podcast over on the bengreenfieldfitness premium channel. So if you have the free Ben Greenfield fitness app, you’ll notice that it appears right in there as a lock button next to it and if you unlock it then you’ll be able to access premium. It’s $9.99 a year and you’ve got like 300 extra podcast videos, pdf downloads, all that jazz. And this latest one with my lapka – honestly, that one year alone I think it’s probably worth $9.99 ‘cause it’s pretty cool.

Brock:  It’s pretty cool.

Ben:  It’s pretty cool. I was drooling over this – this new technology. So check that out over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/premium or just grab the app over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/app. Next, I wanted to mention all these different places that I’ll be just in case folks want to…

Brock:  Looks like everyday in September you’re speaking somewhere.


Ben:  Yeah, so September 21st  to the 23rd, I’ll be speaking at the 431 Project. You can check that out – actually not, rather giving you a lot of these url’s, just go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/290 and you’ll have more in there. The 431 Project is in Vermont, so I’m gonna be speaking in Vermont – for those of you who are around there, bunch of astronauts, technologists, screenwriters, CEO’s, teachers, we’re all going to be there to address inactivity and obesity in the U.S. But it’s gonna be in a really cool format. We’re gonna have like farm to table cuisine, a bunch of smelly acurated wine list and really kind of like a high end five star type of summit. So, you can check that out at the 431project.com and then right after that I’m speaking at The Vermont Traditional Foods and Health Symposium and that’s kind of like a westenate prize foundation type of event. We’re gonna look at traditional diets, traditional foods, health, wellness, longevity. I’ll be speaking there as well after that 431 Project, so if you really want to have a good time and go to Vermont in September, attend both of those conferences, you can turn back to back, literally back to back.

Brock:  Yeah, you’ll learn a crap load.

Ben:  And then the next day I’m flying over to Pasadena…

Brock:  Pasadena!

Ben:  …where I’ll be speaking at Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof Biohacking Conference and if you’re listening to this podcast right when it came out, Dave is extending the pre-sell price of that conference until August 1st. I think you can get in for like 400 bucks and it’s pretty cool ‘cause you can just play with all the latest biohacking tech and hang-out with me and Dave and everybody else who is gonna be there. They’ll be a lot of cool folks there. So, all the toys, the best biohacking toys are gonna be on display and then you get to drink bulletproof coffee until your eyeballs are popping out of your head and you know like…

Brock:  Actually that’s not where I – what I’ve been worrying popping out.

Ben: Oil coming out of your ears, then you’ll wear a diaper… So, bulletproof biohacking conference, check that out. And then the last place that I’ll be in case you’re there is Kona. Both Brock and I will be in Kona – October 8th through the 13th at Ironman World Championships. If you’re a doctor, or physical therapist, or chiropractor, or something like that, if you don’t know there’s a really cool sports medicine conference that goes on that whole week, I’m gonna be speaking down there, it’s called the Ironman Sports Medicine Conference and actually it’s a pretty cool event and it’s a great way to just like geek out, get some CEU’s, write it off as a business expense and go watch the super bowl of ironman. So, there you go and I’ll put links to all that stuff in case I was too way fast for you over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/290. And then just one other thing I wanted to mention is I got a ton of questions. Remember the JJ Virgin podcast, Brock?

Brock:  Of course! How could I forget her arms.

Ben:  Yeah! And she just like went on about all this like special like magic creams, collagen masks and serums and anti-aging stuff that she uses and it turns out that most of these stuff you can only order through like a plastic surgeon or a doctor or a medical spa and Purigenex contacted me after that podcast and they basically offered for our listeners to be able to just get it through me. So basically, all of like the trans-dermal collagen mask and the anti-aging serums and all these stuff that JJ talks about in that podcast, you can get it. One’s called the age reversal serum, just like the extreme deer antler velvet, I almost feel guilty talking about an age-reversal serum right after denying the fact that I was endorsing, yeah.

Brock:  Fountain of youth water…

Ben:  Yeah, I mean like honestly like let’s be frank – that’s probably not true that’s going to reverse aging but it might like make your skin more firm or reduce wrinkles or whatever. I always like to be straight forward, it’s not actually going to make you younger…

Brock:  It will not turn you into Benjamin Button.

Ben:  …it will not change the birthday on your driver’s license but anyways, I will put links in the show notes to get these stuff. Blow the actual doctor price. They were pretty generous, they offered me blow the doctor price, free overnight shipping, so I just said, Yes. And they send me the links and you check them all out over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/290 so check that out and go transform yourself into a new born baby.

Listener Q & A:

Brian:  Hi Ben and Brock, this is Brian. I got a question – I was at the gym several weeks ago and doing some lunges, weighted 35 lb dumbbell lunges and I got little lightheaded. I just kinda curious what do you think about working hard at the gym to lightheadedness?


Should I try to avoid? That would be nice. I just stop, rested, and it continued but it’s mostly bad exercise that I feel that I get low lightheaded sometimes just twice. Thanks! Bye.

Brock:  I don’t know about you but at the gym that I go to there are signs all over the place saying, “If you feel lightheaded immediately get off the machine and lay down in a quiet corner and sound the alarm…”

Ben:  Put down your beer. Actually, my wife and I have been getting lightheaded a few times over the past few weeks but it’s just been getting so hot lately and that can actually be one of the things. I’m just gonna say this just so people know like I mess up sometimes and I do dumb things. I went to the gym, I rode my bike to the gym – it was like a 100 degrees out and I rode really hard and I got into the gym and I was gonna run on the treadmill and the reason I was gonna run on the treadmill is because sometimes I like to do that ‘cause the treadmill pushes me harder than I push myself. So I jacked up the treadmill and I was doing a 2 mile time trial and I got about 1 and a half miles in and got really lightheaded and almost passed out and basically I had to go and sit in the personal trainer’s office for like 10 minutes with my head buried in my hands while they watch me to make sure I was okay. So, like yeah, I mean like, part of this can just be freakin’ heat and the fact that your body is having to shunt more blood to more areas of your body to cool you. And that can definitely be one reason but if you are doing a good job keeping yourself cool during exercise, you’re drinking, you’re not doing dumb stuff like me and then pushing yourself too hard in the heat. A few other things that can cause lightheadedness: the first is a lot of folks will get dizzy and lightheaded when they switch to a low carb diet or they’re restricting sugars. There’s two reasons for that: one is just a stray of hypoglycemia can cause dizziness and lightheadedness during exercise but so can the dump in sodium and the dump in the electrolytes that happens when you switch to like a lower carb intake because as your body loses glycogen content, it dumps electrolytes along with it and that’s why if you kinda dig in to a lot of the low carb literature, you’ll see a lot of recommendations for using things like a lot more sea salt on your foods even like before workout, the use of chicken bullion cubes or really salty sources to increase your sodium intake and increase that natural drop in blood pressure that occurs when you’re low on sodium. So part of this could just be – you know, and I say this ‘cause I know we have a lot of listeners who listen in who experiment with things like ketosis and low carb and that can certainly cause this. The other thing is that, you know, fish is pure low blood sugar right before you workout and this common and this has happen to some people. You can do things to either help your liver to mobilize its storage sugars, caffeine is a really good way to do that frankly, and that’s what I do because I’d like to save the majority of my carbohydrate intake for later in the day. Post workout when my non-insulin dependent glucose transporter pathways are really able to shove the carbohydrates that I do eat in the muscle tissue. So before my workout, I’ll usually do stuff like caffeine, I do disodium atp, another one that you can use is… it’s very similar to the way that insulin works in the fact that it shoves glucose in the muscles cells and it’s got to called inosotol. You can get all that – there’s a stuff called X2 performance and take a shot of it prior to your workouts and that works pretty well. For an afternoon workout, you don’t have to worry about the coffee, it’s like equal to a quarter cup of coffee. So, low in caffeine, that can help. Another thing that can cause dizziness or lightheadedness is improper breathing. Just basically shallow chest breathing, mouth breathing – one thing I’ve been focusing a lot is just deep nasal breathing during exercise as much as possible and the more you do it the more oxygen you will train yourself to be able to take in from deep nasal diaphragmatic breathing and it takes practice. It feels like your turning exercise in the like this focused yoga/meditation session but I personally don’t have a lot of time to meditate. I just don’t. So I turn exercise into meditation by doing it very rhythmically, deep nasal breathing when I’m doing something that allows for me to do that. Let’s face it, when I’m doing it instead of hardcore like kettle bell swings, I’m like huffing and puffing through my mouth like crazy but some of the lighter movements or the slower movements or the movements that aren’t quite as ballistic, say like, deadlifts or a controlled shoulder press or cycling running, stuff like that, deep nasal breathing can help a ton with oxygenation and the dizziness and the lightheadedness that can occur with improper breathing.


Brock:  I’ve been practicing that on my… when I brought my bike to work, I – well, I’m commuting I’ll do the nasal breathing. I can’t really go that hard ‘cause I’m traffic and red light and stuff but it’s a perfect time to really practice that and get in the habit.

Ben:  Yeah and it’s one of the coolest exercise hacks ever. If you can train yourself how to do it and you can kill two birds with one stone, then turn exercise into something like a meditative session. I’m a huge fan of that kind of productivity, so.

Brock:  You just have to be aware of the boogers…upon your cheeks.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah, I also would like to say – brush my teeth and check my emails and stuff like that while I’m exercising too. You know, I wanna kill as many birds with that stone as possible.

Brock:  Just killing birds left and right.

Ben:  The other thing, and this is really common among exercise enthusiast is – adrenal dysfunction. It can cause dizziness and lightheadedness during exercise because your adrenal glands can release epinephrine when cortisol is unavailable or glucose levels get too low and in the state of choleric control or not taking enough calories in a state of over training, in a state of adrenal fatigue, a lot of times that excess epinephrine and adrenaline released by the adrenal glands as almost like a substitute for cortisol can cause lightheadedness, shakiness, irritability, dizziness, and the same type of thing that you might experience with low blood sugar. So, dysfunctional adrenal glands don’t necessarily have to be caused by state of pure over training. They can be caused by a tough day of mental and emotional stress and if you’re one of those people saving your workout for the end of the day, but you’ve not really done a good job but maybe controlling work stress or relationship stress during the day then that can simply cause your adrenal glands to churn out more epinephrine and adrenaline. Sounds kinda woo woo but you’ll find that what happens is, you know, let’s say you’re using like the sweet beat heart rate variability system to measure heart rate variability while you’re at work and you notice that you’re consistently throughout the day experiencing this big deficit in heart rate variability and stress and you’re not stopping to breathe it off and you’re not maybe stopping a few times during work to exercise a little bit or move a little bit or you’re not focusing on fixing emotional issues at work with employees or with your boss. When you workout at the end of the day, you can be producing a lot of epinephrine and adrenaline. So that can cause it. Another thing that can cause over training or adrenal fatigue type of symptoms and the absence of excessive exercise is parasitic and bacterial infections. So that’s another thing, is looking at the health of your gut and making sure that you take care of that as well. But let’s say that the – whatever it is, mental or emotional stress, over training or some kind of infection, you get this increase release of epinephrine and adrenaline, there’s a couple different home tests that you can do to see if that’s actually happening. One is called an orthostatic hypotension test. So, sounds kind of nerdy but the way that it works is you lie down for about 5 minutes and you take your blood pressure while you are lying down and what you particularly want to take note of when you’re taking your blood pressure, like with the blood pressure cuff as you’re lying down is the systolic pressure – that’s the top number. And then what you do is you stand up from that lying down position and as soon as you stand up, you take your blood pressure again. Now, if your systolic pressure, that top number stayed the same or it decreased, that’s a pretty good chance that there’s some adrenal dysfunction going on and specifically an excess secretion of epinephrine. So well, it doesn’t assume there’s a – it means you’ve got basically dysfunction in epinephrine production. So, what you’re looking for…

Brock:  Is that what it would normally result in a sort of a head rush sort of feeling?

Ben:  Uhmm, yup but you can quantify it. You can stand up and what you want ideally is for your systolic pressure to increase by anywhere from about 6-10 – it’s measured in millimeters of mercury or mm per hg. So you want your systolic pressure to go up when you go from lying to standing. If it doesn’t then there’s a pretty good chance there’s some adrenal dysfunction going on. If it drops significantly, you see that a lot in people who are adrenally exhausted. So, that’s one test that you can do. A second test that you can do is called the pupil reflex test. And the way that you do this one and this is again a very simple home test you can do to test your adrenal function is you can stand in front of a mirror and you wanna be in a dark room, in your bathroom is fine, you take a flashlight and you shine the light of the flashlight into one eye.


Okay, so just from the side you shine the light of that flashlight into one eye and you’re doing it from the side because you wanna watch your pupil in the mirror once you shine that flashlight into your eye. And what should happen is when it’s dark, your pupil is gonna be dilated but when you shine the light from the flashlight on your pupil, it’s gonna constrict and how long that constriction happens can indicate adrenal function. So what that means is that generally if you’re looking at your eye after you shine that flashlight on it, you wanna see that it stays constricted – constricted for a little while generally about 20 seconds. Okay, that’s a sign of healthy adrenal function. Now, if you notice that you shine that light at your eye and it starts pulsing or going back to dilation after about 10 seconds or you notice that it doesn’t constrict at all or you notice like a little bit of a fluttering and then a dilation or anything aside from simply staying constricted for about 20 seconds, that’s also a pretty good sign that there are some epinephrine and cortisol issues going on indicative of poor adrenal function. So those are 2 kinda simple at home test for adrenal function and I tend to see in exercise enthusiast that lightheadedness and dizziness at the gym is a lot of times due to adrenal gland dysfunction especially if like blood sugar and some of those other things that I was talking about are taking care of already – you know, hydration and body temperature and things of that nature. So there’s a couple of good home test that you can do for adrenal fatigue.

Brock:  And if people do find out that they have some sort of adrenal dysfunction by doing those tests, they can always go to the website and do a search for adrenal function or adrenal fatigue or something like that. There’s tons of information here.

Ben:  Or read my book. I kinda read a book about that.

Brock:  There you go.

Ben:  It’s called Beyond Training.

Hot andCold:   Hi guys! I was hoping you could provide some advice when it comes to adapting and dealing with extreme temperatures. A lot of triathlons I know start with a swim which can be particularly cold even if it’s a hotter day and especially in the longer races a lot of times you’ll finish the run in the heat of the day. I know there’s a lot of advice out there for adapting yourself to tolerate the cold or the heat but it seems like anytime I go training to tolerate one extreme, my tolerance of the other extreme is degraded. So I was hoping to find if you had any advice on adapting to both the cold and the hot for racing and training. Thanks!

Brock:  yeah, I’ve often wondered that on a really hot day when I take an ice bath and then I get out and it’s like a really hot day and it sorts of heats me up right away, my, undoing all that good, I just…

Ben:  (laughs) No you aren’t. Actually, did you listen to the latest episode of the obstacle dominator podcast?

Brock:  Yeah, yeah, I did it.

Ben:  Yeah, it was – that’s what you did, you’re the editor. I don’t know how much you listen when you editing though but…

Brock:  Actually not a whole lot sometimes.

Ben:  Yeah, it’s true. So, in that epi… you can listen to that.

Brock:  In that show I’m listening for curses.

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  You guys curse on that show a lot.

Ben:  Yeah, but you do a good job blooping it out. Anyways though, you can listen to the show on if you just go to iTunes and do a search for Obstacle Dominator or you could go to obstacledominator.com. We interviewed Matt Novakovich and he’s talking about how the Spartan CEO actually, Joe Desena is coaching Matt right now and because Spartan Worlds Championship involves so many water crossings and water immersions wherein like super cold water like up in Vermont during the race and you’re just like going back in like red hot intensity, he’s got Matt doing like 5 minute cold water river soaks and you get out and you run and you do burpees and pull ups and get back in the water again and that’s actually a really interesting way to train because kind of like the whole cold/hot contrast there if you’re going from the cold to the heat. What happens is that when you get hot or when you exercise or both, it cause vasodilation of the blood flow to any limbs that are working so production of nitric oxide, vasodilation, widening of the arteries and more blood flow and then once you get into the cold, you get vasoconstriction of most of the body which increases some of the local blood circulation to keep some areas warm but generally overall you’re getting a vasoconstriction effects. So you’re like pumping the blood vessels. The other thing that happens is when you get exposed to cold, your lymph vessels contract but then when you get exposed to heat, your lymph vessels relax.


So this almost acts like a pump for your lymph system which is actually kinda nice for reducing inflammation and enhancing immune function. They have done some pretty cool studies and we talked about them a little bit with Dr. Rhonda Patrick when she came on the show indicating that thermal stress seems to positively influence the immune system and this cold/hot contrast therapy where you’re going from cold to hot and back and forth can also possibly affect your immune system. When we look at how this applies to hot and cold question, you know preparing and adapting for extreme temperature fluctuation, you can use this cold acclimation combined with heat acclimation effects. So it combine cold thermogenesis and heat acclimation in the same way that you would do when you’re doing like cold/hot contrast therapy. So you’re going from sitting in a sauna for say like 30 minutes getting as hot as possible and then going and taking a 5 minute icy cold shower. If you wanna do more reps, you can go from 5 minutes of sauna to 1 minute of shower and back and forth. So you’re getting that hot/cold training effect. You can do something like what Matt Novacovitch is doing which is – if you got access to a body of water or some cold water, you can intersperse like 5 minute cold soaks right in the middle of your workout and then get back to working out. So you’re getting back and forth vasodilation, vasoconstriction of lymph fluid and blood fluid. The other thing that you can do is kinda more like the approach that Ray Cronise talked about when he was on the show which hot/cold contrast showers: 20 seconds of cold water followed by 10 seconds of hot water to increase nitric oxide, vasodilation, vasoconstriction, shutdown inflammatory cytokines but also increase your body’s ability to be able to deal with those type of rapid temperature fluctuations. So few different ways to skin the cat and frankly, you can do all these stuff, you could do a cold/hot shower in the morning everyday when you get up and you could a couple of times a week do a sauna plus cold shower session. Like my YMCA for example right next to the dry sauna is a cold shower and I can sit in the dry sauna for 30 minutes and then get out and do a 5 minute cold shower. And if you have access to a cold soak, that’s actually technically even better to do cold water immersion followed by either dry sauna or wet sauna or even hot water immersion if you have a hot tub next to a cold soak. So those are few other things that I would do and by the way, don’t get me wrong about hydrotherapy. There’s actually not a lot of evidence to show that it directly improves things like jumping ability, sprinting ability, even like muscle soreness like they’ve done some pretty interesting control group studies in the Journal of Strength Conditioning published a couple of this recently where they took folks who had just on an exercise session and they had them do this hot/cold therapy. The only thing they notice was that the folks said that they were less sore but none of the physiological markers of soreness that they were measuring or markers of performance were affected at all by this cold/hot contrast therapy but what they weren’t measuring was things like immune system function, they weren’t measuring nitric oxide production and they weren’t measuring of course what we’re talking about here, the ability during exercise to be able to go back and forth between hot and cold which is pretty unique in a race but you do run into it. You do run into situations where like you’re swimming in cold water in a triathlon and then go straight into biking in hot weather or you’re doing something like the Spartan race where you’re going from running in red hot intensity right into cold water and back out. So I won’t claim that hydrotherapy does everything that some people say that it will do like directly decrease soreness or increase performance but it does have some cool effects when you look at immune function and vasodilation, vasoconstriction, stuff like that.

Brock:  And give me hydrotherapy or cryotherapy?

Ben:  Hydrotherapy. Hydrotherapy is actually the term that a lot of exercise science gives to cold/hot contrast.

Brock:  Okay.

Ben:  Using water and temperature to enhance recovery.

Brock:  I thought it was enemas. I think they use it in that term as well.

Ben:  Yeah, they might use it in wellness too and we’re not talking about enemas. That’s a totally different discussion. So a couple of other things to bear in mind here, really I guess there’s one other thing that I recommend and that is that there are specific nutrients that activate heat shock proteins and activate nitric oxide and specifically regulate your stress response to the production of heat shock proteins, heat and rapid fluctuations in temperature. That group of nutrients are called adaptogens and they’re actually specific adaptogens that have been studied for their ability to modulate cold/hot responses and some of the ones that are pretty easy to find that you could get your hands on.


You wanna choose like good high quality adaptogens: eleuthero is one, schisandra (judges like to say, it just like Shazam! Dra! Shazamdra!) and rhodiola – all of those can really help with your defense response against mild stressors and that’s the way that a lot of adaptogens work. For example, I’ve talked a lot before about this like Tianchi Chinese adaptogenic herb that I’ll use in the midmorning. A pack of that during the day and that has eleuthero, schisandra, rhodiola and like 38 other different adaptogens in it but adaptogenic herbs would be something I would definitely consider using and that I’ll personally use like ‘cause I’m getting ready for the Spartan World Championships to allow my body to better mediate the stress response to rapid fluctuations in cold and heat. So I would not just train with hot/cold contrast whether it be via immersion or showers but I also consider use of adaptogens and then also, if you wanna delve into how a guy like Matt Novacavitch and he’s one of the top Spartan athletes out there, if you wanna delve into how he’s using it. Go listen to the latest episode of that Obstacle Dominator podcast. It’s episode number 7.

Laura;  Hi Ben and Brock, my name is Laura from Washington, DC. I have a question about rate of absorption. Both my boyfriend and I drink protein shakes after a session in the gym and we also drink green shakes and my question for you is, is there a specific time frame in which we should be consuming this. I am more of a zipper where after the workout he can just take 3 gulps and be done with his protein shake. I’d like to think that the slower you drink it, the more readily your body can absorb it over, you know, half hour or so? But now I’m starting to think that maybe he’s right and I should just shrug it and get it done. If you could give me any advice and if there’s any difference between drinking the protein at a certain rate and drinking the green smoothies at a different rate, I would be very interested to know. Thanks a lot guys! Love the show!

Ben:  Brock, I don’t know about you but I take like almost 40 minutes to eat my morning smoothie.

Brock:  That’s a lot.

Ben:  That’s a long time. So I make – it’s usually have a kale, or spinach, or cabbage or sometimes a mix of all those. Sometimes I go out to the garden and pick some beet greens or some red leaf lettuce that we have been growing out there. Well, I blend it thick like super thick and then I eat it with a spoon and I put things that increase the texture of like – I put all, I put super foods like they’re going out of style and my smoothie like I dumped chlorella tablets in there, I put unsweetened coconut flakes in there; I use the Bob’s Redmill coconut flakes, I put dark cacao nibs in there and I sit there just chewing like a cow and like all worth one bite of a smoothie around in my mouth for a good 30-60 seconds. I usually get a little bit of work done, reading some of my morning reading, things like that. Sometimes visiting with my kids but I take a while to eat that morning smoothie.

Brock:  I think judging by what you just said you put in it that would take me all day to choke that. Damn, it doesn’t sound tasty at all.

Ben:  Yeah, and actually the older that you get the less hydrochloric acid that you produced the more important that becomes especially for protein-rich foods. So…

Brock:  You’re calling me old.

Ben:  (laughs) No. You’re just older than me… and you have more facial hair. Actually, you have facial hair which automatically differentiates you.

Brock:  And more gray facial hair. Anyway…

Ben:  So if it’s not in the presence of a workout, the cool thing about chewing your food is that it leads to a pre-empty release of insulin and well, when I first said that it might sound negative ‘cause you wanna control insulin for fat loss or for insulin sensitivity or whatever but a small amount of early insulin release as you’re eating actually prepares your body for any carbohydrates present in that meal and it results in less of a total insulin release meaning that you’ll have better blood sugar management when you chew and the reason for that is you get pre-emptied release of insulin which actually helps prevent hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia after your meal. So generally what we know from research is that insulin that’s release at the start of your meal peaks about 4 minutes into the meal and then returns back to baseline levels after about 8-10 minutes.


So the minimum amount of time that you would wanna take to finish a meal if you weren’t in a very insulin sensitive post workout state would be 10 minutes. So if you are not exercising, you’re sitting in your office during the day or whatever and  you’re taking less than 10 minutes to eat, you’re shorting yourself in terms of your ability to control your blood sugar. Now, if you are in a post workout scenario, you’re already insulin sensitive. So that’s a pretty move point, you’re aren’t gonna release much insulin period in terms of shoving that food into muscle cells for recovery because you’re non-insulin mediated glucose transporter pathways are really upregulated post workout. But even in that case chewing food can lead to less potential for gut inflammation, less leakage of undigested protein particles into the blood stream, less formation of those lipopolysaccharide; those endotoxins I was talking about earlier. So, generally what they found in research is there been 2 different studies that have found that chewing approximately 40 times before you swallow cannot only lead to decrease levels of some of these inflammatory markers but it can decrease levels of the hungry hormone, grelin and it can increase the level of 2 different really important gut peptides that are responsible for helping you to digest food. One called cholecystokinin and one called glucagon like peptide. So, what that means is that you’re gonna have a lower appetite and you’ll gonna be feeling fuller more quickly when you take a longer time to eat. The other thing is that salivary amylases produced in your mouth, so once again your pre-digesting carbohydrates in your mouth which could help to control some of the hormones that your pancreas has to churn out and then you get improved digestion when you’re chewing. So you get better ecology, with gut micro flora and your gut bacterial balance again you get that reduced endotoxins and lipopolysaccharide formation that I was talking about and in ayurvetic medicine there’s this whole concept of yin-yang balance and generally one of the things that you’ll see in ayurvetic medicine is that yin-yang balance is thrown off by chewing your food inadequately or else eating in a very distracted state like while you are in a business meeting or talking on the phone or something like that. So not eating while you’re stress is also very important. To answer the question, ultimately sipping your smoothie for about 30 minutes is gonna increase your ability to digest the food and it’s going to lead to better gut health. In a post-workout scenario, we’re not worried about the fact that eating fast is going to cause this hyper-insulin response because you don’t have to worry about the post-workout but you’re gonna get more out of what you are eating if you slowly eat it. So I think lower wins out on this one.

Brock:  Didn’t Dr, Jack Kruse have a theory about actually not chewing your food as much and swallowing it a little more whole to make your digestive system more robust?

Ben:  Uhmm, he does but – and he make pipe in ‘cause I think he listens in. Correct me if I’m wrong – but I think that that was a theory and not based on any research has been done on chewed vs. unchewed food. All the research that I’ve seen has suggested that the more you chew, the better. So, chew, chew, chew, and dump lots of super foods into your smoothies.

Ben:  Hey Ben and Brock, this is – my name is Ben as well. I recently got the superhuman encoder and I tweeted at you asking about bad dreams, specifically I had nightmares like the first night I wore it and since that I usually don’t wear it at night but you said something in the tweet about I think it was DHT, DUT something like that detox. I tried to look for info online about it but can’t really find much. I was wondering if you could expand on that and tell me more about why I was having nightmares. Thanks guys for all you do.

Ben:  Yeah, why we’re kinda delving into the woo woo now. Superhuman encoders and nightmares.

Brock:  I wish he told us what his nightmares are about.  I bet it was you with a clown wig.

Ben:  That might be the issue, yeah. Quit reading comics book before you go to bed ‘cause you do dream about what you dwell on before you go to bed and I’ve certainly been experiencing a little bit of lucid dreaming now that I’m using things like that that Thorne Multi-vitamin like the pm formula. Seems – I think it’s the Relora in that that cause a little bit of lucid dreaming. It’s got like a couple adaptogens in it – Phellodendronand magnolia. They help you to fall asleep faster but I have noticed that I get more lucid dreams when I’m using that and I’ve also been experimenting with the CBD hemp base extract that also can definitely do it.


I suspect via different mechanism than what we were talking about with something like the encoder. So yeah, let’s delve into this. There was a really interesting study that was published very recently just last month in the Journal Nature Neuroscience and what they wanted to look into was the electrical frequencies and whether it is the act of lucid dreaming, nightmares, deep dreams, whatever that causes your body to churn out or your brains specifically to churn out different frequencies, different brainwave patterns, or whether it’s different electrical brainwave patterns that cause a lucid dreaming. So what comes first – the chicken or the egg. So what they did was they actually try to induce lucid dreaming in a group of subjects by stimulating their brains and in this case they were actually using a – what’s called a trans-cranial alternating current which delivered current through electrodes that were placed on their scalps. So they tested a bunch of different frequencies from 2 hertz all the way up to a hundred hertz and then each morning when the participants in the study woke up, they ask to recall their dreams and what they discovered in this study was that the frequency of about 40 hertz down to around 25 hertz, all cause lucid dreaming. They actually found that the exposure to certain electromagnetic or electrical frequencies while you are asleep can affect your brainwave patterns and your ability to lucid dream. Now what is probably coming into play here is a specific molecule called DMT. DMT is also known as dimethyltryptamine and if you’ve heard about ayahuasca before…

Brock:  That’s just what I was gonna say, that’s from ayahuasca.

Ben:  …it’s like this hallucinogenic. Look Relora – ayahuasca is a blend of DMT and then something else called monoamine oxidase inhibitor which is this enzyme inhibitor that allows DMT that you might take orally to be active and cause this hallucinogenic effect. But the very interesting thing is that there’s been a lot of studies into whether or not your body could actually produce its own DMT because I’m gonna assume that Benjamin here is not taking DMT or ayahuasca before he goes to bed at night.

Brock:  I thought he would be blaming the superhuman encoder if he was.

Ben:  Yeah, and there’s been some really interesting research done on DMT and whether or not you could actually produce it like could there be a situation you could put your body in to where it would produce DMT while you’re asleep at night. It could cause lucid dreaming and potentially even nightmares and there’s a really interesting book – I’ll link to it in the show notes if Benjamin or anybody else listening and wants to check it out. It’s called – It’s got cheesy name, it’s called DMT: The Spirit Molecule but it’s actually a pretty cool book with some interesting scientific information about DMT. It was written by this guy called Rick Strassman and the hypothesis in the book is that it’s start off with the fact that a massive release of DMT specifically from your pineal gland is the cause of this near death experience phenomenon whereas you’re about to die and they’ve asked people who have been near the brink of death and brought back about how they all saw like aliens and insectoids and reptiles and weird kinda nightmare types of vision and hallucinations and one of the things that Rick talks about in the book is that your pineal gland actually contains the specific enzymes and precursors necessary to synthesize DMT endogenously. So it turns out that your body may have the capability using some tryptophan precursors and specific enzymes to actually create its own DMT that can cause this type of lucid dreaming and it would specifically be the pineal gland that would be responsible for producing that. You know, Rick Strassman wrote that book, I think it was back in the late 90’s but since then and specifically in 2011 there was an interesting study at the University of Wisconsin that found that the enzymes responsible for the synthesis of DMT and actually some other endogenous hallucinogens that are talked about in that study, there was found in not just the pineal gland but also in what are called your retinal ganglion neurons which are near your eyes or the back of your eyes and also even in your spinal cord. So there’s a lot of evidence out there that you could under certain circumstances produce your own DMT like it cause this type of lucid dreaming or nightmares. I’m getting some more here, I’m getting some more here. Just keep listening.


Brock:  Yeah, I believe so.

Ben:  Okay. So, we now know that DMT can cause nightmares and lucid dreaming. We know that lucid dreaming can also be caused by electrical currents. So, it’s possible that exposure to certain electrical frequencies or certain hertz frequencies could cause the pineal gland to churn out DMT, okay. Now I’m totally not claiming that this is proven or anything but what I’m doing is hypothesizing what could potentially happen here. Now if we look at the pineal gland, the pineal gland can actually act as a signal transducer. If we look at like Hindu medicine and Hindu tradition, the pineal gland is actually perceived as like the third eye. So basically there’s this third eye in the forehead called the crown chakra and you may have heard of that before in like Eastern ayurvedic medicine or Hindu religion where that’s basically the part of your body that would download energy into the subconscious and produce things like weird dreams and visions and things of that nature and it’s directly linked to the pineal gland. So, the idea here is that – in the Journal Bioelectromagnetics, there was actually an article that appeared in which after dissecting 20 different human pineal glands, they found several hundred tiny little micro-crystals composed of calcite. So basically pineal glands had this crystalline formation in them that are very similar to like the little crystals in your ear that can vibrate and help you to hear sound. Part of that is hair and part of it is crystals but the pineal gland appears to contain some very similar mechanisms and these are specifically piezoelectric crystals meaning the same type of crystals that are capable – that you could use to like tune in to radio stations without the use of electricity or radios that use piezoelectric crystals. Your pineal gland also has this same type of crystals in it and piezoelectric crystals can turn sound vibrations into electrical current and vice versa. So when you hear about people using like binaural beats and sound to induce specific hertz frequencies to help them get into deeper state of sleep like putting on headphones that produce binaural beats or listening to sleep cd’s and things like that. One of the things that’s going on is an actual vibration of the crystals that are in the pineal gland and because the pineal gland, we now know, has the production to churn out DMT, it is certainly possible that when we are exposed to specific frequencies, the pineal gland is vibrating in a way that will cause you to churn out DHT. So this is where this superhuman encoder comes in the plan. I’m wearing one in my wrist right now and these are manufactured in Scotland and they’re made for me to a full disclosure. I sell them. You can get them at superhumanencoder.com. These are piezoelectric crystals inside the superhuman encoder and what that means is that it’s a crystal that is bombarded with sound frequencies in the 8 to 10 hertz range which is, for those of you who are familiar with what’s called the Schumann resonance – that is the same hertz frequency that geological formations in like rocks, and the planet earthy meds. So when you hear people about grounding or earthing or things of that nature; that’s all based off getting exposed to the Schumann resonance. So it’s kinda like if you wanna think about this in simplistic terms, equivalent of wearing like the Schumann resonance on your wrist. So it’s emitting this constant frequency because it’s piezoelectric crystal just like it’s found in your pineal gland and this piezoelectric crystals once they’re exposed to a sound frequency will continue to vibrate at that frequency. So this thing is vibrating at about 8-10 hertz. Now if you are a musician and I know you’re a musician so you’re probably familiar with this Brock…

Brock:  Uhmm.

Ben:  One thing that can happen is when we get things that are vibrating, they also produce harmonics.

Brock:  Yeah, sympathetic vibrations.

Ben:  Exactly. So 8-10 hertz is also going to produce some vibrational off shoots in like the 72 hertz range, the 144 hertz range, all the way up to the 432 hertz range. So basically when you have a specific hertz frequency, you’ve got that hertz that vibrating at that main frequency but then there’s harmonics getting thrown off. Which is way only like pluck a guitar string if you listen carefully, you can actually hear it vibrating at higher and higher octaves. The idea here is that what this means is when you’re wearing something that’s vibrating on your wrist while you’re asleep at night even though in for example that study where they induced lucid dreaming, they were using much higher hertz frequencies than this 8-10 hertz frequency which is why when you’re sleeping and you’re grounding or earthing map you’re probably not gonna feel things like lucid dreaming, etc. but the harmonics that you get from a piezoelectric crystal that’s vibrating may actually do produce some off-sets of harmonic frequencies that could cause the pineal gland to vibrate at this higher frequencies produced endogenous DMT and cause like lucid or hallucinogenic dreaming.


And one of the things that you should be aware of is this whole concept of a DMT detox. Meaning, some people will use things like ayahuasca otherwise to increase DMT and for the first few times that they use it, they get really bad nightmares and really disturbing visions and then eventually (and they call this a DMT detox and I’m totally not going to pretend that I know the physiology of it because I don’t) but they say that this stuff goes away after about 2 weeks or so. So it could be that you just mean it to kinda like get through it and maybe read some kids story books or something before you go to bed so you get your mind full of like smurfs and rainbow ponies and that might help a little bit. Make sure that you’re not thinking of stressful or deeply emotional things before you go to bed. But ultimately, you know, that was kind of woo woo and I was drawing a lot of coloralies like I will be the first to admit that everything that I just talked about is really soft science but that is what I would suspect would cause something like this and I thought it would be interesting to get into that for folks to just how the pineal gland works and how certain sound frequencies can really affect the way that your brain works while you’re asleep or while you’re awake I mean, you know, so the idea behind like getting into the alpha brainwave zone you produce extra alpha brainwaves and you increase force performance, you produce delta brainwaves and you get relaxation, you get this gamma brainwaves and that’s kinda like the hulu lucid dreaming thing. So not to get off on too many segues but I hope that helps you out then…

Brock:  Segues!

Ben:  Segues! The other thing that you could try is there’s this magnet that you can put on your bed called the Earth Pulse and that actually also emits the Schumann resonance frequency and the only reason I bring that up is it produces a pretty powerful frequency of that same kind of 8-10 hertz range and that made overpower some of these harmonic frequencies and potentially if you put that under your bed, that’s something I sleep with underneath my mattress, you might kinda mitigate a lot of these higher frequencies being produced by something like the piezoelectric crystal inside the encoder. So, now that we have 2 listeners left (laughs). That is my response.

Brock:  Alright, the next caller has to save us.

Peter:   Hey Ben, this is Peter from San Diego, California. I just wanna say I love you and Brock show. I have a quick question about the red light bulbs. I know in a couple of different podcasts you talk about using your red light bulb before going to bed so it doesn’t disrupt your sleep. I’m actually color blind and I’m wondered if there is a difference between using a red light bulb since I actually cannot see red. If it is due to a spectrum or it was actually just color related. Once again love the show and I look forward to your response.

Brock:  Oh, this is…

Ben:  (laughs) I thought we’re getting off the woes.

Brock:  No, apparently we’re sticking the woo woo.

Ben:  Alright, we’ll stick with it, we’ll do this.

Brock:  Actually, I want an answer to this question because I’m also color blind, Peter. So I wanna know if this has any effect.

Ben:  Well, your eyes can detect visible light waves or visible radiation but there are forms of light that you cannot see and one of those forms of light that falls along the electromagnetic spectrum of light is infrared light and infrared light lies between the vision and the microwave part of the electromagnetic spectrum and what that means is that in infrared you can feel and it can produce heat. As a matter of fact your body even produces its own infrared. That’s why like when someone puts their hand close to you, you can feel heat coming off of them. That’s infrared. So, you’ve got photo receptors on your skin that can detect infrared heat whether or not your eyes are detecting it and your eyes actually can even detect infrared. The only way that your eyes could detect infrared, if it’s you’re using night vision. That’s what night vision does. Night vision detects the infrared waves and heat coming off of animals or people or objects and that’s really the only way that you can see infrared. So you can get all the beneficial effects of far infrared without ever actually seeing infrared like when you look at this – red infrared or something red infrared therapy devices that I’ve talked about, the fact that they produce red light is just the fact that they do have the red light waves spectrum as part of bulb but the actual infrared light is what you’re going after when you’re using one of these things. So, in terms of what you’re going after when you’re expose to infrared light is the fact that the micron wavelength of that light is able to penetrate like 6-8 inches into your tissue.


So you get this relaxing generation of warmth but far infrared lights have been shown to do some really interesting things like it can stimulate cells called fibroblast to make more collagen. So that’s not good for just wound healing and tissue repair but it also got this kinda cool like skin anti-aging effect if you…

Brock:  It’s age reversal serum!

Ben:  It’s age reversal serum light! So you can put this next to your bed. This is what I do before I go to bed at night is I sit there and read and for about 15-20 minutes, I have my infrared light turned on. There’s some really interesting research we talked about in the study a few weeks where they use these same technique in athletes and found that they slept 15-20 minutes longer in the morning when they were expose to infrared compared to a controlled group that did not get expose to infrared. The heat from infrared expands your capillaries. So you get better blood flow, you get more circulation, you get more oxygenation. So that’s another thing that it’s good for. When you expand capillaries, what happens is that also has an effect on lymph vessels as well as blood vessels so you can get better elimination of metabolic by-products, there’s some talk about the detox effect. I don’t know how much of a detox effect there is. I haven’t seen any research on that, you know, I’ve seen research on vasodilation and on the sleep and on the production of fibroblast but the idea here is that when you get the production of sweat in response to infrared heat or you get blood vessel dilation or lymph fluid increase from the exposure to infrared, you get like elimination through the sweat and the oil glands of toxins and chemicals and stuff like that. I don’t know if that’s true. I honestly haven’t ever seen much about the detox effect of infrared. Far infrared does emits photons and photons help you activate enzymes. So the specific enzymes that are activated by infrared stimulate macrophage activity which is a white blood cell activity that can increase the elimination of damaged and deceased tissues. It can basically assist with cellular apoptosis which is another thing that can happen when nitric oxide is released which is another thing that happens when you get exposed to far infrared. So you’re getting everything from like a little bit of skin anti-aging effect, to strengthen part of your immune system, cardiovascular system, and then also a little bit of apoptosis or just basically cellular clean up.

I’m a big fan – I put that infrared therapy light device next to my bed at night. I also take a nap on an infrared mat and the infrared mat, you know, it’s a perfect example, it doesn’t release any light at all, right. It’s just infrared waves. You don’t see ‘em at all but you feel the warmth just like when you close your eyes you still feel the warmth from the sunshine, you know, that’s infrared. So, basically the idea here is that you can get all the benefits of infrared without seeing any of it at all. You don’t have to see the red light, you just have to feel it on your skin. In the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/290, Peter I will link you over to the DMT infrared therapy light that I use and then also the infrared biomat that I use and you can put that together with your piezoelectric crystals and scare all your friends away. But now, I mean like, and again like I get called out and talking about some of this stuff that I goes above and beyond, you know, Western medicine or tons of pre-reviewed research and you just view yourself as n=1. You don’t have to believe me on the use of infrared, try it out! Order infrared therapy device off of Amazon, try it out and I mean return it to Amazon if you don’t like the way you feel or it doesn’t help you sleep. Same thing with like the biomat, I mean they’ve got like a 30 day return policy. Order biomat and try to sleep it on a few times if you don’t like it, send it back. If you get one of this like superhuman encoder devices and you try that and you don’t like the way it feels or you don’t notice better balance or better sleep, send it back! If you buy an Earthpulse off of Amazon and you don’t like the way, I mean, most of these stuff you can just try it out and I mean, it’s really not that risky to try out. I’m not a big fan of just like ordering stuff willy nilly for the sake of returning it but some of these stuff you can just try out and see if it works for you. Use yourself as n=1 and if not, no harm done. So actually they’re maybe harm done, you can mess yourself up for life. You become impotent and I don’t know, fry your pineal gland off.

Brock:  Ah, your pineal gland! You need that!

Ben:  I can’t think of other glands I want even more than my pineal gland.

Brock:  Fair enough. Alright, well let’s wrap this show up. Shall we?

Ben:  We better because our next question could be about – God knows what.

Brock:  I think it’s actually supposed to be about unicorns. You can grind their horn down and use it as a performance enhancer.

Ben:  That’s right, that’s right. That, panda bear tears and of course extreme deer antler velvet.

Brock:  Yes, of course the extreme deer.

Ben:  And speaking of extreme deer wearing beanies, You! can get – do you like how I did that all the way around,  I remember what I said beginning at the beanies, yeah. So, you can get your own awesome Ben Greenfield fitness thermal beanie for your heat acclimation sessions, a bpa-free water bottle, and a really cool Ben Greenfield fitness tech t-shirt embedded with piezoelectric crystals.

Brock:  Oh, it’s not. It’s not.

Ben:  You can support our show by getting all that for yourself over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/gear or you can leave us a review in iTunes and if you hear us read your iTunes review on the show, then simply write to [email protected] and we will send you some sweet swag and we got a doozy ever review from Brandi. It’s really…

Brock:  It’s not really a review, it’s more of just a tale.

Ben:  It’s just a tale. Yeah, so we’re gonna read this and even if you’re not Brandi listening in and you’re just somebody else, you actually find this one quite entertaining so. What do you think Brock? You wanna pronounce some slow piano music and take this one away?

Brock:  Sure! Sounds good. “Dear Ben and Brock, you remember the email with the subject line ‘Beware the Squatty Potty’ that a random fan sent you in February? Well, this is the same fan and I have another story for you…. One of my staple supplements is magnesium because 1) it keeps my poop schedule consistent (hardly it is, I think it does) and 2) my body takes a pounding running 75 miles a week as a college runner. I switched to Natural Calm Magnesium a few months ago because, well, Ben said it’s good stuff and I think I’m absorbing it better than the other kinds. I was flying out of Colorado to Texas one morning and I decided to run before my flight because that way I could enjoy one last cool morning of running before I had to go back to the smog swamp. Naturally, I planned my run so that right after, I’d go straight to the airport. No shower, just run and go. As you can imagine, I was going through security as sticky, sweaty mess but I’ve gone to class in similar state before when running a morning practice went a little long…

Ben:  Well, if she listens to last week’s podcast, that could actually increase the testosterone of all the men out there, so.

Brock:  Indeed!

Ben:  There’s that especially if she’s wearing the scrunchies.

Brock:  Especially if she’s wearing a scrunchie.

Ben:  Anyways…

Brock:  Anyway, my bag was going through the scanner and sure enough they pulled it aside and searched it. I figured it must be the rolling pin which I use for trigger point active release but TSA was only mildly puzzled by that accessory. The TSA man…

Ben:  He claims it’s a rolling pin, we all know what it is.

Brock:  Dude!

Ben:  Sorry, okay go ahead.

Brock:  You mean the foam roller, right? (laughs) The TSA man kept digging and pulled out my container of Natural Calm and I realized, “Ah, white powder, of course.” He wipes it down with his little felt thing and when he scans it in the drug and hazardous material or whatever scanner, the alarm starts beeping and red screen flashes. The TSA agent turns to me and says something along the lines of, “this set the alarm off so we’re going to have to pat you down and check your whole bag, miss.” All of a sudden Mr. Bright and Cherry TSA man turned bad cop on me. Somehow in the last 60 seconds I went from the nice runner girl to this sweaty drug smuggler. Now normally, my personality, I’d have been freaking out all mad at TSA, but in my head I was giggling.  You might recall as I mentioned I just ran and had not showered. I was quite amused by the fact that TSA decided to pick the one sweaty runner coming through that tiny airport to pat down. By the end of it all, all TSA had was a pair of gloves covered in my sweat and bag balm (for my chaffing thighs) and I went on my merry way with my supposed laced magnesium. The moral of this story, well, careful to all your listeners carrying on natural calm powder and if you do, make it at least worth your while and let TSA pat down your sweaty backside and chaffing thighs if they must search you. Thanks again for all your awesome info. You guys rock! Best, brandi.”

Ben:  Wow! Sweaty backside and chaffing thighs.

Brock:  Yes, that’s…

Ben:  Plus the rolling pin and white powder.

Brock:  … that’s definitely the first time we’ve said that in a review I think.

Ben:  Well Brandi, best of luck next time you fly. Now you know, keep that magnesium on top….

Brock:  You’re on the black list now.

Ben:  … of your bag and label it magnesium powder and…


Brock:  it’s all that convince them?

Ben:  Yeah and that’s quite a story. But we’ll send you a review for that story. That was actually pretty entertaining and I’ve certainly run into my own issues with the TSA and all the weird stuff that I fly with and by the way, it’s when we talked about it, the number one thing that always gets me flagged by the TSA is that earth pulse. So if you get an earth pulse, may sure you put that on top of your luggage so you don’t have to dig down through your underwear and all your other goodies, your “muscle rolling pin” to get your earth pulse. There you go! Well, that was a perfect way to end today’s podcast because we talked about some pretty weird stuff. If you are listening in, stay tune for Saturday and what do we have coming up on Saturday, Brock? Do you remember what Saturday’s podcast is kinda pretty interesting.

Brock:  Because it’s large. I don’t remember what I’m doing tomorrow and might Saturday.

Ben:  It’s a podcast about – actually you know what I think the podcast is, it is a Ketosis. Everything you’ve always wanted to know about ketosis but were afraid to ask.

Brock:  Oh, our friend Jimmy Moore.

Ben:  It’s Jimmy Moore but we actually get into some pretty cool and interesting stuff I’ve been talking about before when it comes to ketosis. So we talked about carbohydrate tolerance and protein load and measuring ketones and what keeps you out of ketosis. What a cool stuff. So, check that out. Come on Saturday if you’re gonna be  in Washougal, Washington at the Spartan Race, they have me and my wife, my boys will be there and yeah! I think we better wrap this thing up. So what do you think, Brock?

Brock:  Yes.

Ben:  Over and out.

Visit bengreenfieldfitness.com for even more cutting edge fitness, nutrition, and performance advice.

[1:22:11.0]  END



July 30, 2014 Podcast: Dizziness During Exercise, Combining Heat Acclimation And Cold Thermogenesis, Can Eating Slow Increase Food Absorption, Lucid Dreaming Detox, and How To Use Infrared Therapy.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, click Ask a Podcast Question at the bottom of this page, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form…but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


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September 21-23: Ben will be speaking at The 431 Project – where astronauts, technologists, screenwriters, CEO’s, educators and more, will assemble in the picturesque Green Mountains of Vermont to take up a crucial call to action to end inactivity and obesity in the U.S.. Imagine Ted Talks meetsDavos meets the National Geographic Channel. Vibrant fall foliage, fresh farm to table cuisine and world-class sommelier-curated wine lists are a bonus of this exclusive summit. If you want to connect, share, learn, have the time of your life AND change the world…get invited by requesting an invitation in the efforts to lead 300 million Americans towards positive choices, healthy living, and simple, sustained changes that will change their lives.

September 25-27: Ben will be presenting at The Vermont Traditional Foods and Health Symposium at Shelburne Farms. Inspired by the teachings of the Weston A. Price Foundation, this event explores the core principals of how traditional diets can contribute to health, wellness, and longevity.

September 26-28: Ben will be speaking at 2014 Bulletproof Biohacking Conference in Pasadena – Dave Asprey has decided to extend the pre-sale ticket price of $400 until this Friday, August 1st. Dave is stacking this year’s event with an all-star speaker lineup of bestselling authors… entrepreneurs… Olympic athletes… nutritionists… world-class biohackers… and more… Plus, an interactive expo of the latest biohacking ‘tech’ – including cutting-edge gear designed to get you into hyper-productive “flow” state, courtesy of the Flow Genome Project. And YES, that means Dave is making sure all the best ‘toys’ are on display in one place – and you get to play with them… click here to get in now.

October 8-13: Ben will be speaking at the Ironman Sports Medicine conference in October during Ironman Hawaii. He will be presenting on nutrition myths and alternative methods of fueling Ironman (and Brock will *hopefully* be there too)

If you want The Purigenex Intensive Collagen System that JJ Virgin talks about in the podcast, it has only been sold to plastic surgeons, doctors and medspas for the past 5 years. But this transdermal collagen mask and serum is being made available exclusively to Ben Greenfield Fitness Subscribers for $300 below the doctor price with FREE overnight shipping! Check it out here. You can also get the Age Reversal Serum she talks about here. 

The Rock Star Triathlete Academy has relaunched with a lifestyle membership card! Click here for all details.

Go ask your burning Obstacle Racing questions at http://www.ObstacleDominator.com for the brand new Obstacle Dominator podcast.

Grab this Official Ben Greenfield Fitness Gear package that comes with a tech shirt, a beanie and a water bottle.

And of course, this week’s top iTunes review – gets some BG Fitness swag straight from Ben – leave your review for a chance to win some!



Listener Q&A:

As compiled, deciphered, edited and sometimes read by Brock Skywalker Armstrong, the Podcast Sidekick and Audio Ninja.

Dizziness During Exercise

Brian asks: He gets lightheaded at the gym sometimes. Usually when he is doing weighted lunges. Is this a bad thing? Is it dangerous? He would of course rather not have it happen, but is it something to worry about?

Combining Heat Acclimation And Cold Thermogenesis

HotandCold asks: He has seen a lot of information about becoming heat acclimated and about ice baths and cold showers but not a lot about how to prepare yourself for a race that may start off in very cold water but end with a very hot run. How can you prepare and adapt for extreme temperature fluctuation? Does training for one temperature negate training for the other?

In my response I recommend:
The latest episode of Obstacle Dominator with Matt Novakovich
Adaptogenic herb Tian Chi

Can Eating Slow Increase Food Absorption?

Laura asks: When she and her boyfriend finish a workout they both have a protein shake or a green smoothie. He downs his in 2 or 3 gulps while she sips hers for 30 minutes. She likes to think that the slower you drink it the better your body can absorb it. Is that true or should she try to chug it?

Lucid Dreaming Detox

Ben asks: He has stopped wearing his Superhuman Encoder to bed because it gives him bad dreams. He Tweeted you about it and you mentioned something about a detox… but he hasn’t been able to find any more info about it. Could you explain what might be happening and why he is getting the nightmares?

In my response I recommend:
DMT Spirit Molecule book

How To Use Infrared Therapy

Peter asks: He knows that you like to use a red light in the bedroom before you go to sleep and he understand why. He is colourblind and cannot see red. Will he still get the beneficial effects from using a red light or does it rely on you being able to see that part of the spectrum?

In my response I recommend:
DMT Infrared Therapy

Read more https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/07/290-dizziness-during-exercise-combining-heat-acclimation-and-cold-thermogenesis-lucid-dreaming/


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