Episode #303 – Full Transcript

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Podcast #303 from https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/12/303-krill-oil-vs-fish-oil-yoga-vs-swimming-athletes-vs-immune-system/


Introduction:  In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Krill Oil vs. Fish Oil, Yoga vs. Swimming, How To Reverse The Damage Caused By Antidepressants, Open Water Swimming 101, and much more.

Welcome to the bengreenfieldfitness.com podcast.  We provide you with everything you need to know for total performance, fat loss, recovery, digestion, sleep, brain, and hormone optimization.  So whether you’re an Ironman triathlete, or you just wanna shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from bengreenfieldfitness.com.

Brock:  Well, Happy New Year, Ben!

Ben:  Happy New Year!  Hey, let’s get this podcast out of the way so I can go drink copious amounts of alcohol this morning.

Brock:  I’ve already started.

Ben:  Hmm, I heard you went to a hockey game, last night.

Brock:  I did, I went to an oiler’s kings game and the Oilers won for the first time in like years, which is kinda cool but I partook some of the festivities in that.  I had a couple really crappy beers out of really crappy little plastic cups, and so, if I am not quite as smart and quick as I normally am, I blame the crappy beer.  I just – I hate the way – I didn’t get drunk like two beers is enough to get me drunk but I’m just foggy.

Ben:  Ah yeah.  Uhm, I’ve actually been abstaining from alcohol for the past week.  Pat myself on the back for that.  Oh well over the holidays,  honestly when there was a party like every freaking night.  That’s quite a feat.  But this whole blog post that we’re doin’ right now, the 30 days no alcohol challenge where the guy, he did the blood testing and then we went 30 days and he just sent he all of his results from 30 days being off alcohol, and I’m like…. Holy cow!  I’m actually releasing an article this Monday at bengreenfieldfitness.com but I mean, it’s like the guy has gone from an unhealthy wine swinging about to die of a heart attack type of scenario.

Brock:  Sorry, Jason.

Ben:  Yeah, it’s now the angels are singing everywhere he goes.  So, it’s pretty amazing…uhm…

Brock:  Really?  It’s that significant.

Ben:  Yeah, it’s pretty significant.

Brock:  Crazy.

Ben:  So I got before and after photos, and all that jazz.  It’s amazing, what happens just 30 days, so I figure a week isn’t gonna hurt me but yeah, like I said, let’s get this thing done so I can go pop and open a bottle of bubbly and bring in 2015.

Brock:  Sounds good.

News Flashes:

Brock:  Twenty fourteen was riddled with awesome studies, news flashes, posts, and all kinds of stuff, and this week is no different.

Ben:  That’s right, and we’re speaking of pop and open a bottle of bubbly.  I guess we might as well talk about some other ways to make your baby stupid.  (chuckles)  This is actually…

Brock:  Feed the baby bubbly.

Ben:  Yeah, or yourself when you have the baby inside of you.  This is actually a study on pre-natal exposure to common household chemicals and as I do over at twitter.com/bengreenfield, I’m always tweeting the latest and greatest things I find.  And this one was really interesting, what they found was that children who are exposed during pregnancy to high levels of two different chemicals that you’re gonna find in most homes especially in the US but elsewhere also, one called dimethyl phthalate, another one called di-isobutyl phthalates.  This also goes by…

Brock:  I have that under my sink.

Ben:  Yeah, the general term phthalates.  They had an IQ score that was on average more than 6 points lower than children who are exposed to lower levels of those chemicals in their homes.  And so, the recommendation from the study was to do things like not microwave food in plastics, to avoid scented products as much as possible.  Not even include like scented like shampoos, and soaps, and stuff like that to be really careful with air fresheners in the car, to be careful with drier sheets, and also, as we’ve talked about before on the show, when you look at the plastics that you’re using especially if you’re pregnant, but I would just say in general, anything that’s got a 3, or a 6, or a 7 on it, you generally would want to stay far away from those.  So, the magnitude of the IQ differences though is pretty significant and so if you got air fresheners and drier sheets that you’re hanging around the house and especially if you got a little one growing inside you, you may wanna think twice.

Brock:  I think the hockey arena beer dropped my IQ by six points too.

Ben:  Yeah, considering that you probably drank out of a small cheap microwave plastic glass, yeah.


Brock:  Yes, microwave the beer.

Ben:  Exactly.  So, another thing and this also I guess is somehow related.  And it has to do with your New Year’s resolutions and the munchies and those extra pounds that you might get.  And this was a study that I found in the magazine I was reading just a few days ago and it was about marijuana, and the fact that new research shows that, people who are avid marijuana smokers despite consuming more calories often an extra 600 calories per day had significantly smaller waists and lower body mass index, and less insulin resistance, meaning less difficulty absorbing glucose from the bloodstream compared to non-smokers.

Brock:  How the hell?  Really?

Ben:  Yeah.  Isn’t it crazy?  So, they suspected there is some way in which marijuana – they don’t know really how yet, but somehow it’s working to improve insulin control and regulate body weight despite a greater number of calories being consumed in the folks who are taking marijuana.  The title of the study is called The Impact of Marijuana Use on Glucose, Insulin, and Insulin Resistance Among US Adults, and it was published in the American Journal of Medicine.

Brock:  (coughing)  I’m actually choking, not just pretending.

Ben:  That’s an actual choke.  Just for the record.

Brock:  You wanna get high?

Ben:  So anyways, I thought that was interesting.  Take it for what it’s worth but it turns out that there may be something to marijuana use and insulin control.  What I’m interested in is whether or not the cannabidiols in marijuana which are the non-psychoactive components, right, which are for example in the US are completely legal in all 50 states, that you can get and you can consume it sublingually by spraying the CBD oil under the tongue.  You can get in a liquid dropper form and I’m actually shooting a video about this right now, put up on Youtube pretty soon because I’ve been experimenting with this.  You can put it in one of this E-Cigarettes, and when E-Cigarette – when you’re not burning nicotine in E-Cigarette, it’s basically just propylene glycol and then any added ingredients including cannabidiols or CBD.  Again, completely non-psychoactive but you still get a lot of the relaxing and possibly now the insulin-controlling benefits of some of these extract, and it’s not hard on your lungs.  It’s just – essentially it’s vaporized and just the same as like if you’re breathing steam coming off of the steaming water pot on your stove.  So…

Brock:  So the mechanism might actually be in the cannabinoids…

Ben:  Yeah exactly.

Brock:  …. Or non-cannabinoids.

Ben:  It’s really interesting.  I’ll release a video pretty soon of me showing exactly how you do this – drug paraphernalia video…

Brock:  Do you have an E-Cigarette?

Ben:  I do.  I hate the title cigarette just because, you know, people associate it with nicotine and benzenes and a lot of these carcinogens but the fact is that I’ve been able to use that for CBD oil extract and also been able to use it as shown in the video, with melatonin, L-theanine, and passion flower extract and actually been able to vaporize those part of bed rather than using say like a supplement.  And it’s amazing.  Really cool stuff.  So, give me a few days to get this video out but I’ll put it up over at youtube.com/bengreenfieldfitness, and if you stay tuned to the twitter channel, I’ll talk about it there.

Brock:  I’m on the edge of my seat.  That sounds really cool.

Ben:  Edge of your seat.  And then the last thing that I thought was really interesting was an article about how hard charging athletes are just like exercise enthusiasts in general can keep their immune system strong.  This was an article that appeared at Suppversity, and what the article was premised on was the fact that consuming what are called immuno nutrients or immune system supports.  It goes well beyond just warding off the common and that many of these things that are used as immuno nutrients that feed the immune system can induce performance improvements, generally strengthen the immune system but also shorten the exercise recovery period.  And then the article went on to talk about some of the more investigated vitamins and minerals, and nutrients that can protect your immune system especially when you’re in a state of hard charging performance.  So, one thing that they looked at was antioxidants.  The two most popular of course would be vitamin C and vitamin E.  And while they didn’t really find any effect from high dose vitamin E supplementation, they did highlight some studies that showed a thousand milligrams or greater vitamin C could give you a little bit of an immune boosting effect and possibly cause fewer reports of upper respiratory tract infections.


But as we’ve noted before on this podcast with high dose vitamin C and high dose vitamin E in their isolated synthetic forms, there’s possibly some evidence that it might blunt the response to exercise.  Now, I have my reservations about the studies that show this because frankly the people that they studied high dose vitamin C and vitamin E, and they weren’t exercising that hard, so I’m curious if you compare an Ironman triathlete to somebody say, riding a bike for 60 minutes four times a week.  If there be a difference, if you kind of recess it, which you do need that extra help from antioxidants.  But vitamin C and vitamin E, not really the biggest wins in this one.  Vitamin D on the other hand did have a lot of good evidence behind it as having a really good protective effect against respiratory tract infections and against a lot of the acute inflammation that can occur in athletes especially when their immune system gets suppressed after exercise.  So, vitamin D definitely gets a thumbs up.  And then the article also goes into some other things that tend to fly under the radar when it comes to helping out with your immune system.  Glutamine is one and while you can buy glutamine in its supplemental form, and the dosage that they recommend is up to 20 grams per day which is pretty high considering a lot of capsules are just one gram of glutamine, you’d probably want to get like a glutamine powder.

Brock:  That’s kinda expensive.

Ben:  Uhm, but bone broth is an excellent source of glutamine.  It’s one of the reason that you feel so good when you consume bone broth and why it has great benefit for the immune system.  So I’m a bigger fan of getting glutamine from bone broth and that’s what we do, just make a big pot of bone broth once a week.  Another one is arginine which is a pre-cursor to nitric oxide so it has a performance-enhancing effect but it turns out to have a little bit of immune system supporting effect as well.  Arginine just like glutamine is also an amino acid.  So if you’re eating a good range of amino acid, you’re already getting some arginine anyways, but the use of arginine to support your immune system was the one that I don’t think is talked about too much but it does have an immune system supporting effect.  And then the last thing that the article talked about a little bit was lactoferrin, and lactoferrin is actually a component of colostrum.  One of the things that I personally use for my immune system and also to improve my gut health when I’m competing, but lactoferrin is another one that has some very good anti-microbial activity and can protect athletes from infections.  So, really interesting article.  I just kinda scratched the surface of some of the details of why some of these things work, but vitamin D, glutamine or bone broth, lactoferrin or colostrum, and then arginine which you should actually have to take in like it’s supplemental form or else just eat a lot of protein-rich foods.  All seem to be doing a pretty good job keeping you from the sniffles and the snots.

Brock:  Love it.

Special Announcements:

Brock:  So I haven’t talk to you since Christmas.  Did you – I saw you got a big pile of books.

Ben:  Yeah, I got a lot of books for Christmas.  As a matter of fact, I got books, books, books, and a coffee maker.  So…

Brock:  Nice.

Ben:  It’s this coffee maker called the Wealthy Precision Coffee Maker, beautiful coffee maker!  It just sits on your counter, and it uses a paper filter.  Interestingly, we talked about paper filters a few episodes ago and how paper filters and coffee might actually reduce the ability of some of the terpenes in coffee to limit your bioproduction.  And cause a big surge in cholesterol, so if you’re gonna filter your coffee, it turns out a paper filter can filter out some of those things that might inhibit your ability to be able to digest fats.  On the flipside though, when you use a paper filter, you don’t get all the brain building effects of something like bulletproof coffee.  So, it’s kind of a catch 22 but interestingly, yes, I did get a lot of books.  I also just published a book bundle.  For any of you who want to make yourself as tough as nails or maybe get a third lung and kinda get into the fittest 99% of the population.

Brock:  (chuckles)  Third lung is not guaranteed.

Ben:  That’s right. Third lung is not guaranteed. Uhm, obstacledominator.com published a training plan and nutrition plan, how to build your own obstacles, construction guide – pretty much everything that you need including a bunch of interviews with athletes and a ton of videos that I actually shot up on my property here in Washington state with the number one Spartan athlete, Hunter McIntyre.


We put all of that, up just now on obstacledominator.com, and if you’re listening to this podcast when it first comes out, on January 1st, then you should know that for the 1st two weeks in January, we’re running a special on that bad boy.

Brock:  Hot topic!

Ben:  So it’s normally $97 for the entire bundle of books, audios, videos, everything, and right now it’s 77 bucks and it’s a really, really great training program that you can use for 2015, and actually it’d be pretty easy kinda like I do to also modify it for triathlon.  You throwin’ in a couple of swims a week and a couple of bikes a week, and then do that program as written and it’s actually, it’s pretty useful for that too.  If you wanna kinda doing what I’m doing and combine triathlon and obstacle course racing.  So check that out at obstacledominator.com.  You don’t need a coupon code or anything, it’s automatic right now if you go to the site.  It knocks it down to 77 from 97.

Brock:  Dude, Spartan races, do they let you bring your bike on the course?

Ben:  Uhm, I feel like you probably could.  You’d probably use some props or like carrying a bicycle above your head.

Brock:  Oh yeah, and wearing your goggles.

Ben:  Uhmm yeah.  Now, speaking of obstacle racing, one of the things that we actually have in that guide is a separate, kinda little mini-book that shows you how to use some unconventional training equipment like kettle bells, and steel bells, and maces, and battle ropes, and a lot of things…

Brock:  I really wanna get one of those maces.  They look like they’re super fun.  Watching the videos of you and Hunter using it, that’s something I definitely wanna get.

Ben:  Yeah, you actually.  One of the moves that you can do with the maces, this snow shovel move where you literally hold the mace out in front of you and you push it out in front of you then pull it back and push it in front and then you switch side, and you kinda use your core and step forward as you almost – it was originally used by Hindu warriors as like a weapon and so this was like the spearing motion, right, you step forward and you spear and you kind of spear for like a club.  Well, guess what, after using that thing all summer, snow shoveling which I just recently had to start doing again, feels a heck of a lot easier.  So, if anything, you know, you could use your mace to train for snow shoveling.

Brock:  It’s not a bad idea if you live up north like we do.

Ben:  Anyways though, you get a 10% discount on all of the stuff: steel bells, primal bells, medicine balls, maces, pretty much the majority of what comprises my home gym right now. If you go to onnit.com/bengreenfield, that’s  o-n-n-i-t dot com/bengreenfield.  So check that out.

And then, there’s a few quick places that I’ll be in case you wanna come chill.  First of all, speaking of obstacle racing, yeah again, the Spartan Cruise if you go to thespartancruise.com – me, my wife, my whole family will be on that cruise.  We’re gonna go to a private island in the Bahamas for this tropical Spartan Race.  It’s not one of the big scary ones, it’s like 3-4 miles long but it’s gonna be a bunch of partying, beautiful beaches, this exclusive island challenges and obstacles they’re puttin’ up.  I don’t know what that means, like climbing the top of a coconut tree, maybe jumping over a giant fire pit on the beach, who knows, maybe getting put out at sea for a few days and see if you can find your way home.

Brock:  You had me at Bahamas in March.  That’s all you need to say.

Ben:  Anyways, use 10% discount code BEN10 at thespartancruise.com.  Kids already get in free, they also have this special deals for singles where they’ll hook you up with someone that you can stay with on the cruise.  So, there’s even that – so check that out at thespartancruise.com.  Also, April 24th through the 26th, put in on your calendars – PaleoFX 2015, kind of a who’s who gathering of the paleo movement with a bunch of physicians, and nutritionists, and research scientists, pro-athletes, and trainers.  I like it because it’s this perfect mix of learning how to lift and use new training equipment, to getting a chance to taste and sample all of the different functional foods and of course the – all of the stuff we know that caveman used to eat like paleo cookies and paleo kale chips, and…

Brock:  Uhmm, they’re crazy for that stuff.

Ben:  It is really cool fun time.  So, you can check that out – the link that you can go to is bengreenfieldfitness.com/paleofx15, that’s paleo, the letter f, the letter x, 15.  Check that out.  I’d love to see some of our listeners there and say “hi”.

And then finally, if you happen to be in the Middle East right now or plan on being there in the near future, January 30th through the 31st, I’m gonna be speaking in Dubai, we’ll put a link in the show notes for this episode if you go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/303.  We’ll put a link to my big talk in Dubai.  It’s a two-day workshop, pretty intensive.  You’ll be with me in a room for 6-8 hours, two days in a row, pretty much just like going over every single aspect of becoming the ultimate superhuman.


So, it’s gonna be a lot of fun.  As a matter of fact, even if you don’t plan being in Dubai, grab a plane ticket.  Head over there, it’s the most centrally located place on the face of the planet from what I understand which is why it’s so popular for like shipping, and I don’t know, corporate warehouses and stuff like that.  So actually tickets aren’t that expensive, so it might be a nice whole vacation for you, too.  So check all that out, it’s in the show notes at bengreenfieldfitness.com/303, and that’s it.

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Listener Q & A:

Randy:   Ben and Brock, Randy from LA here.  My question: krill oil or fish oil?  Break it down for me.

Brock:  Krill oil vs. fish oil.  The smackdown.

Ben:  I don’t eat krill ‘cause they are cute little crustaceans.  Fish are just ugly, ugly creatures, but krill, they’re so cute – their little black eyes popping out of their head and their…

Brock:  They’re tiny!

Ben:  … tiny little legs.

Brock:  Tiny little guys.

Ben:  So, here’s the deal; like I said krill is a little crustaceans and whales eat them and small fish eat them, and sea birds eat them, and they’ve gotten really, really popular lately.  For few reason, they – the oil specifically…

Brock:  So hot popular.

Ben:  …So hot!  Krill…

Brock:  So hot.

Ben:  That krill, so hot right now.

Brock:  So hot right now.

Ben:  It has astaxanthin in it, and astaxanthin… I almost said that like I was from Michigan.  Astaxanthin, astaxanthin.  “Ma’am, can I have some more astaxanthin?”  It’s what gives the bright red pigment, the krill oil.  And they say that the oil from krill has a higher concentration of EPA in it, and it also has this antioxidant astaxanthin in it.  Now, the thing with that is that when you look at the antioxidant astaxanthin, that’s pretty easy to actually add to fish oil like the fish oil that I use, the stuff called Super Essentials, that has astaxanthin added to it after the fish is made.  But it makes up about 0.2% of krill oil which is more than what it makes up in fish oil.  However, that rapidly decomposes in about 2-3 hours.  So, it is true that krill oil has this antioxidant astaxanthin in it but you can pretty easily add astaxanthin to fish oil as well if you wanted to, like the Super Essential stuff that I take.  That has astaxanthin it in – it’s a fish oil, not a krill oil but they just add astaxanthin to the fish oil afterwards which is just fine to do because if you actually look at krill oil when you harvest krill oil, that astaxanthin that’s in it, pretty rapidly decomposes.  It decomposes in like 2-3 hours.  So unless they’re getting that into a really safe packaged state right away in terms of the processing, you don’t have a ton of astaxanthin by the time the krill oil actually gets to you.  Now, the astaxanthin component though it’s really pretty small part of the whole idea behind krill oil because what they really try and sell you on when it comes to krill oil is the fact that they say the EPA in it is more completely absorbed, that you get more of those omega 3 fatty acids in krill oil, and this was actually all based off of a recent study that was funded by a company called NKL which is the leading supplier of krill oil, and what they showed was that when you take a 120 mg of krill oil, it increases the omega 3 index which is the kind of the standard for omega 3 effectiveness from about 5.9 to 6.7, and then they compared this to a fish oil and the fish oil increased it only from 5.1 to 5.8.  And this was the study that was used to promote a lot of the superiority of krill oil vs. fish oil.

Brock:  That sounds like about the same ratio of improvement.

Ben:  It’s not the same ratio of improvement.  It is a significant difference from a research standpoint but an increase of the omega 3 index in the human body from 5.9 to 6.7% is not gonna really result in much of a functional effect.  You don’t even get much benefit from using omega 3 whether they’re from fish oil or krill oil until that index reaches about 8% and you really start to notice a dramatic difference once it gets up to about 12%.  So, when you’re just using 120 mg of fish oil or krill oil, either way you look at it, it’s not enough to make much of a difference anyways, but the reason that they only use the 120 ml in the study, and this is the part that a lot of people don’t realize is that krill oil is about 15 to 20 times more expensive to make than fish oil.


So, if they’d actually use enough of a dose of krill oil to dramatically increase the omega 3 index in the human body and get all the anti-inflammatory and the joint protective, and even the potentially cognitive performance enhancing effects of something like an oil, they would have had to use a krill oil amount that would have cost you several hundred dollars per month of krill oil to actually get that effect.  The other thing you got to realize is, in that study they compared it to a fish oil that was in what’s called it’s ethel ester form.  And we’ve talked about this before on podcast.  When you’re buying a fish oil, you have to buy fish oil in what’s called its triglyceride base form.  It’s more expensive to repackage the fish oil and reconvert it into its triglyceride base form after it’s been extracted from the fish, but unless it has been, you get very, very poor absorption.  So, that’s why I only use triglyceride based fish oils and I only use fish oils that have been packaged with things that keep them from oxidation, you know, including for example, astaxanthin.  So, the fact is that, yes, if you take equivalent amounts of krill oil and fish oil, the krill oil is going to increase your omega 3 index a little bit more but you’re also going to pay 15-20 times more for the krill oil and I say, why not just get fish oil like a good triglyceride based fish oil.  Save yourself a ton of money and just take a little bit extra of the fish oil, right?  Like I take, right, I kinda bounce back and forth between fish oils sometimes if I’m ordering my multivitamin from Thorne FX, and a lot of people think I don’t actually buy multivitamin – I do, like I’m on Thorne FX as board of the advisers but I don’t get free multivitamins.  I actually have to buy them.  If I’m buying my Thorne FX multivitamin, I’ll buy the EPA fish oil from Thorne and just to save on shipping.  So that’s the one that – it’s a good triglyceride based fish oil, really, really high EPA content.  It’s a great fish oil, I like that they ensure traceability on that oil and they ensure that sustainable fishing practices are in place, so you get a fish oil that’s free of heavy metals and free of toxins.  So I’ll use that one, and the other one that I happen to be using right one ‘cause it’s another one that I’ll use if I don’t happened to be making an order from Thorne is the Super Essentials Fish Oil.  It’s really dark black fish oil.  It looks like krill oil ‘cause they’ve added so freakin’ much astaxanthin to it, and I like that ‘cause it has skin protective properties, but the Thorne – if you, for example if you go to greenfieldfitnesssystems.com, the only two fish oils that I have over there are Thorne FX – EPA, DHA fish oil, and then the Super Essentials fish oil.  I don’t have a krill out there because it’s to freakin’ expensive to take enough of it to make a difference, that I just don’t – I don’t see it has a real logical choice at this point.

Pepper:  Hi Ben, I really enjoyed episode 301 and particularly enjoyed how you answered the question of how to fix damage from birth control pills.  I was also on Yasmin and I was wondering what you think of using Vitex also known as chasteberry.  It’s an herb that is supposed to help kick start a woman’s menstrual cycle and help boost fertility.  What are your thoughts on using that in order to help fix or kind of  regulate a woman’s cycle after being on Yas.  I have not been able to get my period since being on the birth control and was wondering if this is something that would also contribute to helping me get back on track.  Thank you so much.

Brock:  Chasteberry sounds delicious!

Ben:  Uhm, chasteberry.

Brock:  Actually, it sounds like a – some sort of fruity cereal for kids.  Hey, mommy, can I have some chasteberry?

Ben:  To me it always sounds like something to make you chaste.  Isn’t chaste like basically being absent or something like that?

Brock:  Yeah, it’s the root of chastity.

Ben:  Yeah, chastity, yeah, so I mean like chastity belts, like kind of that stuff.  Yeah, that’s what I think of when I think of chasteberry.

Brock:  Which actually kind of make sense when you talk about menstrual cycle and it does in strange way.

Ben:  I’ll tell you in a second about what I think about chasteberry.  But first of all, go back – if you’re listening in, go back and listen to the episode we did on the pill and all the issues that come with the pills at bengreenfieldfitness.com/301.  We talked about birth control, how to come off birth control, but yeah, you tend to a lot of times have difficulty getting back on your natural cycle when you stop the pill, and there’s a few reasons for that, I mean, birth control pills are designed to suppress the growth of your uterine lining and because that’s what gets basically expelled during menstruation.


Usually you’ll have a lighter or shorter period, and a lot of times when you stop taking the pills, you, well, a lot of times just have regular periods or stop your menstrual cycle all together.  Now, a lot of times this can go hand in hand with things like high levels of stress, or chronic anxiety, or changes in weight.  There are a lot of other things that can stop you from having a normal menstrual cycle but ultimately it’s pretty common when you come off the pill for your period to stop and one of the things that’s recommended in natural medicine is the use of this chasteberry as one way to jumpstart your period, and to get you back off of – if you’re experiencing any type of menstrual irregularity whether it’s related to the pill or anything else.  Chasteberry is one of the things that’s recommended for that.  So, chasteberry is this little brown berry, it’s about as big as a peppercorn and it comes from this tree, it’s called the vitex tree, and what it does…

Brock:  It’s a cool tree.

Ben:  Yes, it’s a cool tree.  So, it suppresses the release of prolactin from the pituitary gland and the reason that it may work, the propose mechanism of action is that when you have elevated prolactin levels, it can cause an irregular menstrual cycle or even the absence of periods.  The other that chasteberry is, is it’s a natural source of progesterone.  So it helps to normalize your ratio of progesterone to estrogen.  A lot of women who have been on the pill or who have irregular periods are progesterone deficient or what’s also called estrogen dominant.  And insufficient progesterone or estrogen dominance can cause irregular menstrual cycles, it can cause increased levels of this prolactin that would technically cause an irregular menstrual cycle, and it can also even cause the loss of drive and so by using chasteberry ironically, it being a natural source of progesterone it may actually suppress chastity and increase drive and also jumpstart regular menstrual cycles.  So, some studies have shown that it may also help with the symptoms of peri-menopause, so it definitely has some benefits but also some side effects.  The recommendations on chasteberry are that you shouldn’t take it for more than 6-8 months at a time.  I’m not quite sure if that’s because there aren’t any long term studies on it and all the short term studies on it have only lasted for 6-8 months or if some kind of nasty side effects like, I don’t know, a giant tree growing out of your crotch happens after you’ve taken…

Brock:  Like a giant vitex tree growing out of your crotch.

Ben:  That’s right.  So, the other thing is that if you are taking dopamine related medications which I think we’re actually talk about later on on this podcast, like anti-psychotic drugs and Parkinson’s disease type of medications, cause chasteberry effects the metabolism of some of those and so, if you’re on something like – an anti-depressant wouldn’t necessarily be a dopamine related medication per se, usually those are more serotonin related, but ultimately I would be careful combining chasteberry with neurotransmitter-related supplements and drugs.  You can get it in a powder extract, you can get it on liquid extract, you can get it in a tincture, you can get it in a capsule…

Brock:  How about a jam?  Like chasteberry jam…

Ben:  You’ll be able to find some yummy chasteberry jam to spread on your crumpet and have with your cup of earl grey tea each morning.

Brock:  Good.  Delightful!

Ben:  Yes!  So chasteberry… uh…

Alice:  Hi Ben, I think that you are amazing.  Thank you for everything that you do.  Your book “Beyond Training” was a game changer for my husband and I.  He’s an ironman, I’m a marathoner and we just love what you’re doing.  So, keep it up.  My question for you is this, I’m a 250 marathoner, and I tend to run high mileage, about 80 miles a week.  My coach likes me to swim three times a week, I am burned out on swimming and it’s winter, and I’m cold.  I’ve gotten really into hot yoga, I love it, it feels great.  Can I do hot yoga 3 times a week, intense one hour flow classes instead of the 3 swims during the week?  Let me know if I need to or if you recommend doing,  2 yogas and 1 swim or if I can get away with no swimming.  It’s kinda what I’m looking for.  Thank you, Ben, I appreciate it.

Brock:  I hear you Alice, going to the pool in the middle of winter, is kinda crappy.  Walk out with wet hair, your hair freezes, riding your bike in the snow, it’s us, terrible.

Ben:  Okay so, I’ve been swimming in my 60 degree pool and the temp outside yesterday when I was in there was 24.


So, I soon as I got out of the pool, my hair froze which is crazy.  And actually if you stand in the pool in between sets for too long breathing, you’re like – your nozzles and your hair starts to freeze as you’re standing in the pool.

Brock:  Your eyelashes freeze together like that.

Ben:  It’s really, it’s really cold.  It’s making me really tough.  So anyways though, I think we are gonna actually talk about cold water swimming later on but Alice is a pretty fast marathoner, I mean, 250s is nothing to be joke about…

Brock:  Yeah, way to go, Alice!

Ben:  … and she runs 80 miles a week.  I’m guessing that her coach is giving her this swim workouts for the same reason a lot of running coaches will give their athletes swim workouts and that’s because swimming can give you such a big cardiovascular engine, you know, when you look at somebody like Ironman triathlete Andy Potts who was like an Olympic level swimmer.  He’s also a great runner and he also has a really good pain tolerance.  He’s probably also able has to stare at boring black lines for very, very long periods of time.

Brock:  Yes, he has a lot of experience with that.

Ben:  It’s because of his history as a swimmer, and you don’t get so much sensory deprivation with yoga, you don’t get quite as much as cardiovascular strain with yoga as you do with swimming, and generally there’s a little bit less resistance with yoga.  Now, there are exceptions to that, for example, if you do kind of a more like tai chi-esque style of yoga or you’re imagining that you’re moving through clay or cement with your hands and producing your own isometric resistance by contracting your muscles as you move with each yoga pose, and I actually – I really like to do this form of yoga sometimes I’ll do like sun salutations, and a lot of the different warrior poses from yoga, but I’ll move very slowly and deliberately almost like the old man in the park, you know, the old Chinese man in the park doing the tai chi where he like – he looks like he’s moving against clay or water or something like that.  You can do that during your yoga and you’ll feel a little bit like you’ve been swimming when you do it because you’re just producing your own resistance.  However, the cardiovascular strain isn’t there but that could potentially be amended as well.  Don’t laugh, but I use a training mask sometimes when I do my yoga.  I’ll use like the elevation training mask that restricts airflow and so it makes yoga a little bit more of a cardiovascular-ly strenuous activity for me.  And that’s because it restrict airflow.  If you really wanna take things to the extreme, you know, you’re doing this, you say intense 1 hour flow classes.  I don’t know how intense those are though compared to something that I – I’d actually tweeted about this recently.  I’ve kinda gotten on this yoga kick over the past two weeks and I’m working on an article at quickanddirtytips.com about this.  I write for quick and dirty tips each week about how to do fitness yoga, but one of my inspirations for that has been Diamond Dallas Page yoga which is actual yoga produced by this ex-pro WWF wrestler and it’s just…

Brock:  Oh!  That’s why I know that name.

Ben:  Crazy yoga where you’re doing like… The Supestar!..  and the – it’s not the warrior, it’s The Road Warrior!… and then you’ll finish up like a sun salutation series and then you’re going to this signature Diamond Cutter move.  And, rather than going into your relaxation pose in between like your child’s pose, it’s called The Safety Zone…  So anyways though, it’s called Diamond Dallas Page yoga but it’s actually really hard.  I did it with…

Brock:  I’m going in to my safety zone right now…

Ben:  I’ve done it with my elevation training mask and mostly it’s tough, like it’s a workout.  So, what I would say is, Alice, yoga is not gonna give you what the cardiovascular strain that your coach probably wants you to get that you’ll be getting from swimming, like that non-impact form of lung busting activity.  But you could potentially, I’d say you don’t have to do Diamond Dallas Page yoga – your coach may actually laugh at you if you do that…

Brock:  I’ll laugh at you.

Ben:  … but you may want to consider using an elevation training mask, and of course, the problem there is that if these are not one hour flow classes that you’re doing in the privacy of your home, you may get some funny looks when you wander into your yoga class wearing your mask.  The only advice that I can give you is dress up like Bane from Batman and then you’ll just complete the look.  Nobody is gonna know who you are anyways ‘cause you have the spiky shoulder pads, the mask.  Shave your head, and start fights, and then you’ll be good to go, and everything will make sense to people then.

Brock:  You always have to talk like this.

Brian:   Hi Ben!  Hi Brock, great podcast!  Long time listener.  I do have a question for you.  I was on antidepressant for almost 10 years.  I was on a wide variety of combinations of medications, but for the last 5 years I was on heavy doses of Lexapro and Effexor, so everyday I was taking that, and it was effective for it needed to do but I’m feeling like I have side effects.


So I’ve been off for a couple of years about my mental acuity is way down, sleep patterns are a wreck and I am wondering if there’s any way to put together a program to detox from that or if there are doctors that I can see or if this is a thing.  So you guys always take such good care of this sort of matters.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on it and could be really, really helpful for me.  So looking forward to hearing your response and keep up the good work.  Really love the podcast.  Bye.

Brock:  Lexapro and Effexor, I think both those are SSRIs if I’m not mistaken.

Ben:  Yeah, they are SSRIs and…

Brock:  Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors…

Ben:  I’m not a fan of them, probably not surprised there but I’m not fan of these SSRIs ‘cause they cause the short term flooding of the brain with serotonin.  And then what happens is a lot of that serotonin is left hanging around in the little gap between your axion called the synaptic cleft and there’s very fast degrading or breaking down of that serotonin that’s flooded into the synaptic cleft.  So what you get is more and more levels of serotonin are eventually required as your serotonin receptors eventually become desensitized, this constant flux of neurotransmitters that you’re feeding in by being on this serotonin reuptake inhibitor.  And so, as that happens your biology begins to rely upon external sources of serotonin and when you actually are able to release your own serotonin, it winds up getting broken down way more quickly than it normally would if you hadn’t been on SSRI because the enzymes in your synaptic cleft have been trained to rapidly breakdown serotonin.  So what happens is you need this constantly increased dosage of your antidepressant and then you also end up depleting up to 60% of the serotonin receptors in your brain.  Now…

Brock:  Also they just start shutting them down ‘cause they don’t need them anymore.

Ben:  Exactly, ‘cause you don’t need them anymore.  And you also have – a lot of people don’t realize, you have serotonin receptors in your liver, in your kidneys, in your colon, and so those can also become damage by antidepressant use.  That can affect things like constipation, it can affect things processing of nutrients, bioproduction for fat breakdown, blood pressure regulation by the kidneys.  It’s really, really kind of a vicious cycle and when you look at a lot of the meta analysis that have been done on antidepressants, they’ve actually shown that SSRIs have absolutely no clinically meaningful advantage over a placebo and there’s very, very little evidence to show that antidepressants are effective even in severe cases of depression, and so, ultimately I’m not a big fan of SSRIs to regulate neurotransmitter issues.  I think there are better ways to do this.  And of course, if you’re trying to detox off of an antidepressants, one of the first things that you’ll probably need to do is look into some type of neurotransmitter repletion therapy.  Now, what I mean by that is that – one thing that I recommended for people who struggle with insomnia.  A lot of times you have imbalances in tyrosine and what’s called HTP, and so one of the things you can do is you can take like 3,000 mg of tyrosine combined with 300 mg of HTP.  You split that into 3 daily doses, like a thousand of tyrosine and a hundred of HTP at breakfast, at lunch, and at dinner, and that can help to rebalance at lot of the neurotransmitters that are imbalance in relation to insomnia.  That just one very simple example of neurotransmitter repletion and there are blends of tyrosine and 5-HTP that come in those exact ratio like there’s one called TravaCor by a company called Neutro Science.  There’s one called Neuro 5 HTP by a company called Biotics, and there’s one called Cravearrest by Designs for Health, but all those are just tyrosine, 5-HTP blends because it’s a pretty proven ratio for things like neurotransmitter imbalances specifically the type that cause insomnia.  Other examples…

Brock:  I’m gonna interrupt for a second, Ben is not a doctor and this should not be taken as medical advice.

Ben:  Well, that’s what I was just about to get into.  There is a doctor who specializes in neurotransmitter repletion therapy, his name is Dr. Daniel Kalish.  I’ll put a link to his website in the show notes, but if you visit the Kalish Institute website, or if you read the Kalish method book, or if you speak with one of his licensed Kalish practitioners on prior to experimenting with any of the stuff, it’d be a really good idea.


If you wanna delve into the science, one of the websites I really like is called neuroassist.com, and a ton of really good studies on neurotransmitter repletion but yeah, you shouldn’t rely on, you know, yours truly, a personal trainer and nutritionist who walk you through something as complex as this like if I was really concerned about my own neurotransmitter repletion, I would hop on the phone with Dr. Kalish or fly and see him, or visit his website and find a local practitioner or someone…

Brock:  Yeah, there are tons of Kalish practitioners, right? That you can find.

Ben:  Yeah, and a lot of them can work with you remotely and one of the things you’ll find yourself doing in many cases is a test.  There’s a test for example called the neuro adrenal expanded test and it tests for urinary neurotransmitters like epinephrine, and norepinephrine, and dopamine and serotonin, all these things that can tend to be imbalanced and then once you’ve tested at that point, you can engage in smart neurotransmitter repletion based on your specific deficits and excesses.  So that’s kind of the skinny on neurotransmitter repletion but again like a Kalish practitioners who I would go to if I really wanted to make sure that I was doing everything right when it comes to this.  There’s also a really, really good book by the way, if you’re not convinced about what I said about SSRIs, I’ll link to this book in the show notes.  It’s called Rethinking Psychiatric Drugs, Rethinking Psychiatric Drugs, you can check it out at bengreenfieldfitness.com/303.  And then there are other things, I talked about a lot of these things in my book Beyond Training that can help you with balancing your neurotransmitters or keep you from getting into a state where you need neurotransmitter repletion in the first place, and many of these are logical like moderating stimulants or engaging in coffee cycling.  That’s worth for every month of caffeinated coffee that you drink, you take a week and you drink decaf to keep yourself from overloading the adenosine receptors in your brain.  I’m actually, personally on my decaf cycle right now.  I’m a – this is the form doing decaf, yeah.

Brock:  That’s why you sound…

Ben:  No alcohol and decaf.

Brock:  Dude!

Ben:  You can be really careful with mycotoxin exposure, meaning like use a hepa air filter in your house, be really careful with the – stuff like moldy coffee, cologne, perfume, air fresheners, all those type of things that tend to have mycotoxins in them.  Be really careful with sensory overload like really loud music, a lot of times spent at clubs or under fluorescent lighting.  Saying this a little bit hypocritically because I just spent two hours last night playing laser tag in the laser tag arena filled with techno music and white lights and I have to admit, my sleep was not stellar last night.  And it’s because my brain was firing pretty hard after that experience but the same could be said for like really loud scary movie at night like sometimes you deem to take time to breathe unless your neurotransmitter slow down a little bit.

Brock:  Yeah, I was on Cipralex which is an SSRI for about three years, and the thing that helped me the absolute mostly when I came of it, was meditation and breathing practice.  Like just everyday making sure to do it twice a day, taking time, setting it aside and just doing it no matter what I felt like or what the day was like.  It just made a huge difference in getting my brain back in online.

Ben:  Yeah, there’s even that new app called Muse that can walk you through these meditations.  It’s really cool like attach these things to your head and … I don’t own one yet but it’s on my list of things to grab just because it guides you through meditation and relaxation.  Pay attention to your gut.  Remember that the majority of your neurotransmitters are made in your gut and your gut uses a bunch of neurotransmitters.  And 95% of the body serotonin is in the gut.  So make sure that you’re being careful with things like gluten, commercial dairy, things that your body might have a hard time digesting like lectins, and glutanines, and I would consider maybe even trying out like a paleo autoimmune diet for 4-8 weeks just to kinda hit the reboot button on your gut.  So that’d be another thing that I would pay attention to.  Anyways though, those are some of the places that I would start – would be neurotransmitter repletion, and maybe looking into this Kalish Institute, taking care of your gut, taking care of sensory overload, moderating stimulants like caffeine, and then being really careful with like mycotoxin and mold exposure.  So, that’s where I would start and best of luck, Brian!

Stephen:  Hey Ben, how you doin’?  Just wanted to thank you for everything that you do for all of us and the listeners of the show.  I had a quick question:  I like to get into some more open water swimming.  I’m currently living in Raleigh, North Carolina where the temperature doesn’t get too cool, however, we certainly do get our fair share of frosty nights, and there’s a local lake nearby that I would love to get in, and I’m checking the water temperature, and it’s kinda down into the low 50.  So, my first couple of questions that you could talk about hypothermia for the body within cold waters specifically exercise, and two, if I need to alleviate this by getting in open water, swim training suits, or a wetsuit use when trying to go for these open water swims in the cooler lake, if you could recommend some good companies or something to go with for an open water suit.


So, thank you very much.  Appreciate everything you do for people that wanna be more fit and healthy for their lifestyle.  Thanks Ben, bye.

Brock:  So, you’ve really been swimming out there when it’s cold enough to freeze your hair?

Ben:  Uhhmm.

Brock:  You are the Hormesis King.

Ben:  Uhhmm, and I love cold water swimming.  It’s so good for you.  We’ll obviously, you know, just a few days ago at bengreenfieldfitness.com I released this big article about how you could do things basically how to use cold to both build muscle and burn fat simultaneously.  It was actually a really good article I think.  I don’t know how many people read it ‘cause it was released right around Christmas but really good article actually for building muscle and burning fat, but when it comes to food, workouts and also how would you combine cold thermogenesis with that.  Anyways though, go to bengreenfieldfitness.com and just surf through the last few articles there.  We’ll put a link to it at bengreenfield fitness.com/303.

 But yeah, getting into open water swimming, there are definitely some things that you want to bear in mind.  Specifically what happens physiologically when you’re body gets immersed in cold water that you need to be prepared for because there are nervous system reflexes that are gonna happen when you hit the water, that eventually go away but initially you get to used to this.  So, for example when your body senses this intense and it’s very similar to the mammalian dive reflex that I spoke with the free diving journalist about in the podcast that I did with him a few weeks ago, this mammalian dive reflex where when your body senses intense cold, it sends these signals to the brain and that results in this gasp of breath in and followed by hyperventilation and increased breathing rate and increased heart rate.  And that eventually begins to go away, and as a matter of fact what a lot of water cold swimmers find is that when they enter cold water, they actually take this deep breath and their heart rate begins to slow and they almost have learn to allow that to slow down the nervous system.  Almost like when Han Solo gets, gets – you know, put in frozen ice chamber and sent to Jabba the Hut, it’s slows down everything, so he stays alive.  Kinda similar to that, but initially your response is just like this hyperventilation and gasp.  That’s normal but know that that goes away.  Another one is of course shivering.  And as your body produces more brown adipose tissue and it’s able to generate heat and burn calories to generate heat, you’ll shiver a little bit less.  Another thing that happens is when you get the stress response to cold, your body releases this surge of catecholamines called adrenaline, and noradrenaline, and this causes an increase in heart rate, and it causes an increase in blood pressure, and one of the things that happens when you get this increase in blood flow and pressure in your kidneys is you have to pee, that’s normal when you get in a cold water until you’re acclimatized, until you’ve been doing it for a few weeks.  You really have to pee when you get into cold weather and especially cold water.  And that eventually goes away as your body – it begins to produce more and more of a hormone called aldosterone which helps to regulate your blood levels and promote food retention in the body, and keep you from having to pee quite as much when you get in cold water.  But initially, you’re gonna have that gasp, you’re gonna shiver, you’re gonna have the stress response, your heart rate’s gonna go up, you gonna feel like you have to pee, and it’s really cool how you get this adaptation to where all of that eventually starts to go away, and you start to get a lot of the benefits of cold water swimming like changes to your immune system.  A lot of cold water swimmers report that they get sick less frequently and it’s because your immune system grows more stronger in response to frequent bouts of hormesis or mild stress from cold water.

Brock:  That totally flies in the face of everything that your mother has told you about going in the rain – “You’re gonna catch cold”.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah, mom.  Your mom is dumb.  So, you heard it here first.

Brock:  Screw you mom!

Ben:  (chuckles)  Anyways though, you get better blood pressure regulation because of that effect of your kidneys and your ability to churn out more of these aldosterone.  You get an increased in nitric oxide synthase which allows your blood vessels to vasodilate and vasoconstrict a lot better.  You get lower levels of cytokines, lower levels of a lot of the clotting factors that are related to blood stickiness, and of course, you also get as long you don’t engage in the often seen caloric hyper compensation response to cold swimming.  Meaning you finished cold swims, you just eat everything in sight.  As long as you’re able to keep that at bay, has a good fat loss response too.  But you do know as seen that a lot of cold water swimmers are fat frankly because they are training their body how to put a bunch of fat tissue on, and eating a lot.  But if you do cold water swimming and you don’t eat a lot, and you’re able to regulate your appetite and engage in self-control, it’s a really, really good fat loss strategy.


So, as far as temperatures go, you know, whether or not you need a wetsuit, you’re gonna see a few temperature, so if you look at – and we’ll just use Fahrenheit for our examples, my apologies to people who go in the Celsius…

Brock:  …to the rest of the world.

Ben:  Yeah, we can try doing it in Celsius too.  It’s like 32-53, it’s like 0-11 degrees–ish, so that’s freezing, right?  And when you get into freezing water, it’s really painful, these are like the cold water swims that a lot of people were gonna do tomorrow morning, like the new year’s cold water swim – the Polar Plunge a lot of people do this around the world.  Doing that just for like 1, 2 minutes in the morning.  Icy, icy cold exposure can make you feel really, really good the rest of the day but you do get weak really fast, and once you’re in there for more than 2 minutes, you can get like skin burn, and your skin gets like this purple-lish orange-ish red color, so you wanna kinda be careful with that.  But then, once you get into, be about 12-16 degrees Celsius, 53-60 degrees Fahrenheit, you’re going to get into a temperature that’s more conducive to longer periods of time called water swimming, you acclimatized to that pretty well.  If you’re wearing a wetsuit, you can swim comfortably for pretty long period of time at a 53-60 degrees and even if you’re not wearing a wetsuit, you know, most open water athlete can operate for long periods of time with that temperature, and so that’s a pretty good temp as well.  And then, once you get into like warmer water like 17-20 degrees which should be kind of like 63-68 degree range, that’s a lot more comfortable for a lot of folks for longer periods of time.  Some people still find that’s cold because when you look at pools at like health clubs, those are kept at like 80-86 degrees.

Brock:  Yeah, they’re like soft and warm.

Ben:  Yeah, which is like 30 degrees Celsius, so this cooler temperatures are so cold for a lot of people who are used to cold temperatures but ultimately you can – once you get above about 12 degrees Celsius or around 53 degrees Fahrenheit, you really don’t have to wear a wetsuit, and your body will acclimate to that pretty well and a lot of the discomfort that you experience to those cold temperatures will go away.  As far as a wetsuit, and my recommendations for wetsuit, what I use is the Blue Seventy Helix

Brock:  Me, too.  Same one.

Ben:  I love that wetsuit.  It is – it’s got varying levels of thickness at the panels like in the shoulders and in the legs, you could almost freakin’ like run in it.  I was actually thinking about doing the Tough Mudder, and the world’s toughest mudder last year, I didn’t windup doing it.  It was this year a couple of months ago ‘cause I ended up going to Israel but I was gonna bring my Blue Seventy Helix and I was very comfortable about that just because you can move in it so easily.  So, I like that wetsuit with the, you know, the Japanese Yamamoto style rubber which is a really good, kinda gold standard style of rubber, it’s got good paneling.  I’m a big fan of that as far as a wetsuit brand goes.  As far as learning how to swim properly in open water, if you look at like the one of the more popular forms of swimming, probably ‘cause guys like Tim Ferriss have talked a lot about this.  The total immersion style swimming – I’m not as big of a fan of that for open water swimming.  It teaches you to how swim really efficiently in a pool, but once you get into waves and wakes, and stuff like that, there’s a book called The Swim Smooth Book in a website at swimsmooth.com, and these guys specialized, it’s owned by open water swimmers, the book is written by open water swimmers, and they basically coach triathletes and open water swimmers and they just know how to tackle waves, how to tackle wakes, and how to swim in a style that allows you to cut through open water a lot more efficiently.  Higher stroke rate, less of a glide, that type of thing, so check out, the book is called The Swim Smooth Book, and I recommend you at least grab that book.  Get yourself a Blue Seventy Helix, and then as far as the hypothermia goes, unless you’re swimming in a really, really cold water especially if you’re wearing a wetsuit, you don’t have to worry about that so much, I mean, your body will acclimate.  And if you do start to notice some of the symptoms of hypothermia like you start to get really tired, it gets very hard to move your muscles, a lot of times like it feels like you have a brain fog and you’re having a hard time thinking, then that’s a signal to get out of the water.  But I mean, just stay close to the shore when you’re swimming, some of the body if you can and you’ll be able to get out quickly.  The trick is put yourself in a situation that you can get out of the water quickly if you need to.  And then, you know, when you…

Brock:  Yeah, swim parallel to the shore so you’re not going straight out into the lake or whatever you’re at.

Ben:  Yeah, and when you’re first in water, know that once you wait like 90 seconds, 2 minutes, it gets a lot more comfortable when you’re first throwing out in water swimming but those first like 90 seconds or so can be really kind of uncomfortable and I recommend that you – before you get in the water, you like pick like a rock or tree that you’re gonna swim to, and let that distract you from the fact that the water is really cold.


And also when you get out of the water, strategically place a towel because there will be some significant shrinkage, so just beware of that especially if there’s anyone around from the – size of crotch or regions is a concern.  So…

Brock:  And make sure to watch more Tarzan movies for inspiration as well.

Ben:  That’s right!  Ahaaa ahaaa!

Brock:  If you really wanna learn how to swim, watch Tarzan.

Ben:  And speaking of Tarzan, that’s it’s – actually that’s… that segue doesn’t make sense at all.

Brock:  How are you going to make this segue?  (laughter)

Ben:  Let’s read our review for this week because if you’re listening in and you leave us an iTunes review – we got a one star last week.  Somebody hated on us, but we can reverse that damage if as many people as possible go over there.  Leave us a 5 star review if you enjoyed this episode, if you learned something from it ‘cause that’s our goal – it’s to kinda teach you useful things that make your life better and make you a healthy person.

Brock:  That’s not my goal.  My goal is to be a jackass.

Ben:  That’s right, Brock’s goal is to make me sound smart.  So, head over to iTunes, leave us a review.  And you if you go to iTunes and you leave your review, and we read your review on the show, simply write to [email protected].  Let us know your t-shirt size and we’ll send you this sweet gear pack – that’s a Ben Greenfield fitness water bottle – BPA-free of course, so you don’t make your baby stupid, tech t-shirt for working out and making your muscles big or the muscles your building by doing your Diamond Dallas Page yoga, and then a really, really cool beanie that you could use when you get out of the cold water after open water or play strategically in…

Brock:  I was gonna say like you don’t mean on your head, dude.

Ben:  So, that being said, we have a review this week called Taking Dumps Never Sounded So Professional Until You.  And it’s a 5 star review by Dr. Heffaluffagus.

Brock:  Dr. Heffaluffagus, I love it!  It’s a good name.  All right, this is how it goes – He says or he or she says: “Your book Beyond Training changed my life.  I’m a recent graduate of Chiropractic College and I’m continuing my Masters in Acupuncture right now.  I trained hard throughout school even though I was constantly burnt out.  After I graduated the DC program I knew I needed to change something.  That was about the same time I got your book.  I cannot even tell you how glad I am that it came into my life as such a perfect time.  Because of your knowledge that you share though the book and the podcast, I have completely changed my outlook on training and my life, as well as gaining insight to share with my patients.”  Nice!

Ben:  Wow!

Brock:  Damn, dude!

Ben:  It’s kinda like a book review more than a podcast review but we’ll take it.

Brock:  All right, yeah ha, “Thanks so much for all you do.  P.S. I appreciate that in your professional biohack lecture, you repeatedly said the phrase, “take a dump”.  It was exciting.”  Exciting, really?

Ben:  I don’t really know if it was a professional lecture, but I do like to use my dump phrase quite excessibly.  So, speaking of taking a dump, I’m gonna segue again, and this one does make sense.

Brock:  Is this how you’re gonna end the podcast, is it?

Ben:  That’s well, no.

Brock:  Heading off to the crap room.

Ben:  Actually, I was gonna pop open a bottle of bubbly and bring in the New Year.

Brock:  Happy New Year!!

Ben:  Yeah, for all of you listening in, Happy New Year, and as we go into 2015 and surge past the 303rd episode of Ben Greenfield podcast, I can guarantee you that we have even more fireworks, happiness, and wonderful knowledge in all things, health, fitness, nutrition, and dump related, coming at you in 2015.  So…

Brock:  (singing)  Should old acquaintance be forgot… I’m just background music… (continue singing) and never brought to mind, should old acquaintance be…

Ben:  Check out the show notes, bengreenfieldfitness.com/303.  Thanks for listening in.  Have a great week!

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

[1:04:48.5]    END  



Dec 31, 2014 Podcast: Krill Oil vs. Fish Oil, How To Get Your Period Back, Yoga vs. Swimming, How To Reverse Damage Caused By Antidepressants, and Open Water Swimming 101.

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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The Obstacle Dominator training plan – has launched. Click here to get it now. This is going to make you tough as nails, give you a third lung, change your workouts forever, and thrust you into the fittest 99% of the population (probably the craziest and most nefarious thing Ben has ever created). On sale for $77 until Jan 15.

January 30th – 31st, 2015: Ben will be speaking in Dubai – Talise Fitness and Jumeirah Emirates Towers, proudly invite you to take part in an exclusive two day seminar held by the renowned nutrition and fitness expert, best selling author, coach, speaker, ex-bodybuilder and Ironman triathlete, Ben Greenfield. Click here for all details.

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015Below is just a taste of what to expect at this can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.

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.

Krill Oil vs. Fish Oil

Randy says: Krill oil or fish oil? Which is best and why? Break it down for him.

In my response I recommend:
-Superessentials or Thorne EPA, both available here.

How To Get Your Period Back

Pepper says: She liked your answer in Episode 301 to the question about coming off birth control. She has had trouble regulating her menstrual cycle since coming off Yasmin and is wonder what you think of Chasteberry as a way to help fix her cycle?

In my response I recommend:
Chasteberry on Amazon

Yoga vs. Swimming

Alice says: She is a 2:50 marathoner. She runs high mileage (80 miles a week) and her coach likes to give her swim workouts 3 times a week. She is burnt out on swimming (and it is winter and cold) and would rather do some hot yoga instead. Can she do hot yoga 3 times a week (intense, 1hr Flow classes) instead of the swims? Which would be more beneficial?

In my response I recommend:
TrainingMask.com (GREEN1 gives 20% discount)

How To Reverse Damage Caused By Antidepressants

Brian says: He has been on antidepressants for the last 10 years. For the last 5 years he was on heavy doses of Lexapro and Effexor. It worked well, did its job and he has been off for a couple years but he feels like his mental acuity is down and his sleep patterns are a wreck. Is there a way to put together a program to detox or if there are doctors who can handle this? Is this actually a thing?

In my response I recommend:
Rethinking Psychiatric Drugs book
Dr. Daniel Kalish is a real expert when it comes to neurotransmitter repletion therapy, and I’d highly recommend you visit the Kalish Institute website, read the Kalish Method book or speak with a licensed Kalish practitioner prior to experimenting too much with this stuff.  Another very good resource to learn more about neurotransmitter repletion is NeuroAssist.com.

Open Water Swimming 101

Stephen says: He would like to get into more open water swimming. He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina where it doesn’t get too cold – water temp into the low 50s. Could you talk a little about hypothermia in connection with exercise? At what point should he be using a wetsuit? What style of wetsuit? Also do you have any wetsuit brand recommendations?

In my response I recommend:
Blue Seventy Helix
Swim Smooth Book

Read more https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/12/303-krill-oil-vs-fish-oil-yoga-vs-swimming-athletes-vs-immune-system/


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