July 6, 2019
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The popular website Vice published a controversial article last week entitled “The Most Overhyped Wellness Promises, Debunked.” Chock full of skepticism about keto, colonics, charcoal, and more, the article created plenty of buzz—both good and bad—across the internet…
…and in today's podcast, I'm going to address the Vice article in full, including debunking plenty of the BS that was in the article, presenting research-based facts about so-called wellness myths (including a few that will surprise, such as the truth about charcoal toothpaste and sea salt), and set the good folks at Vice right.
Enjoy, and be sure to leave your own comments and feedback in the comments section below.
You can find Part 1 of this series, where I debunked the first 22 “myths” found in the article here.
Now, here are my responses to Myths 23-44:
– Myth #23: Red yeast rice supplements aren’t that effective at lowering cholesterol…7:08
- Red Yeast Rice: Benefits, Side Effects and Dosage
- Contains monacolin K (same thing found in statins)
- Some forms don't contain doses as high as found in literature
- Can affect cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure
- Greater insulin insensitivity
- Prevented increases in cholesterol levels in rats
- Decreased tumor levels and cancer cell growth
- Red yeast rice supplements contain only trace amounts of monacolin K (check label carefully)
– Myth #24: You should not eat your placenta…11:30
- Placenta – Worth Trying? Human Maternal Placentophagy: Possible Benefit and Potential Risks
- Nutritional composition: whole host of vitamins, interesting hormonal profile
- Effective in treating depressive moods, postpartum depression
- Not much human clinical research verifying the efficacy of eating the placenta
– Myth #25: Microwaves are not bad for you…15:38
- The Two Sides of the Story: Is Microwave Radiation Harmful?
- Dehydrates, hurts the taste of food
- It may not be bad for your food, but it may be bad for you
- Non-native EMFs
– Myth #26: Crystals do not store healing, stress-relieving energy…18:55
- How Crystals Work: The Science of Crystal Healing
- LCD: Liquid Crystal Display
- Crystals contain quartz (silica dioxide)
- Much of modern computing depends on crystals
- Marcel Vogel: Pioneer of crystal research
- Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton
- Mind to Matter by Dr. Dawson Church
- No human clinical research on crystal's efficacy on healing and stress relief
- Himalayan Salt Lamp
– Myth #27: You do not need a colonic to power-wash your intestines…24:20
- Is a Colon Cleanse Actually Beneficial? What You Must Know…
- Can be helpful for some people
- Limited research to show its efficacy
- Need to repopulate the colon with a probiotic after a colonic hydrotherapy
- People feel amazing after the therapy; release of bile by the liver
- May be worth investigating if you have chronic constipation (after other resources have been exhausted)
– Myth #28: Don’t drink red wine because you think it’s healthy…28:33
- “I could probably do a whole podcast on the health benefits of red wine.” -Ben Greenfield
- Contribution of Red Wine Consumption to Human Health Protection
- Resveratrol claims have been greatly exaggerated
- Blue zone inhabitants habitually drink red wine
- Blue Zones, by Dan Buettner
- Women are at lower risk for many health issues
- Good effects on cardiovascular system
- Beneficial for heart cells
- When wine paired with physical exercise, improve LDL to HDL ratios dramatically
- Beneficial effect on blood pressure
- The French Paradox: Lessons for Other Countries
- Fit Vine Wine (Use code: GREENFIELD for 10% off)
- BGF podcast w/ Todd White of Dry Farm Wines
– Myth #29: Epsom salts don't relieve muscle pain…36:54
- Pharmaceutical Influences of Epsom Salts | Insight Medical Publishing
- Sulfate ions may help in removing toxins and heavy metals from cells
- Ben uses magnesium sulfate salts, not Epsom salts
- Weekly bath in Epsom salts can support recovery, relaxation, sleep
- Vice is correct on the claim on muscle pain
– Myth #30: You can’t cure depression by working out…40:30
- Can Exercise Prevent Depression? Here's What the Science Says | Time Magazine
- Exercise can protect against depression, but depression doesn't prevent someone from exercising
- Weightlifting and running increase blood to the brain
- Small amounts improve mental health (walking after a meal)
- Numerous studies contradict the claim from the vice article
– Myth #31: Meditation isn’t always soothing…43:40
- Meditation is a Powerful Mental Tool – And for Some People It Goes Terribly Wrong
- Some get hyper-aroused when they meditate; could be because of increase in mindfulness
- Can be avoided with proper instruction and preparation
– Myth #32: Cryotherapy doesn’t help your muscles recover…45:52
- Whole-Body Cryotherapy Decreases the Levels of Inflammatory, Oxidative Stress
- Cold-water immersion is superior to whole-body cryotherapy; but cryotherapy is effective in muscle recovery
- May not see a marked improvement immediately after, but it does help in recovery
– Myth #33: Food intolerance tests are based on shoddy science…48:28
- Four Pillars of Excellence
- Ben agrees with this one!
- Cyrex Labs
– Myth #34: Eating soy isn't going to give men boobs…50:48
- Should men cut back on their soy intake?
- This myth is the result of one individual who claims his man boobs are the result of increased soy intake
- Eat fermented forms of soy
- Estrogeneration by Dr. Anthony Jay
-Myth #35: The birth control pill does not cause breast cancer…53:33
- GPR30 Gene Polymorphisms Are Associated With Gynecomastia Risk in Adolescents
- Oral Contraceptives and Breast Cancer: A Review of the Epidemiological Evidence With an Emphasis on Younger Women
- Study Finds Weak Link Between Birth Control and Breast Cancer
- New Study Finds Relationship Between Birth Control and Cancer
-Myth #36: Hydrogen water isn’t better water…58:20
- What is Hydrogen Water? Benefits & Effects – SelfHacked
- Hydrogen affects 63 different diseases because of impact on free radicals, cells, etc.
- H2 safe for stroke patients
- Parkinson's patients show improvement
- Protective effect in the brain, specifically hippocampus
- Anti-inflammatory effects, and anti-oxidative effect
- Bottom line: Ben doesn't agree…
– Myth #37: You don't need to work out on an empty stomach to lose fat…1:03:23
- Fasting and Exercise: What Are the Benefits?
- Intermittent Fasting for Athletes: Benefits and Concerns
- This one is partly true, but you can definitely lose fat while working out on an empty stomach
- Possible decrease in testosterone
- Can affect muscle buildup
– Myth #38: Vitamin IV drips don’t do anything for healthy people…1:06:24
- Ben agrees with this one
- IV Vitamin Therapy: Your Questions Answered
- BGF Podcast with Dr. Craig Koniver
– Myth #39: The fat-burning effects of high-intensity interval workouts have been exaggerated…1:08:57
- Fat Loss Showdown: Does HIIT or Steady State Cardio Burn More Fat?
- Study showed 3x greater fat loss in a HIIT regimen vs. steady state
- Post-exercise oxygen deficit
- Increase in metabolic rate that stays longer than steady-state exercise
- HIIT may have appetite suppressing effect
- Ben agrees that some of the claims have been exaggerated; however, HIIT is superior to steady state training
– Myth #40: The concept of a “superfood” is misleading…1:12:04
- Superfoods: Health Benefits, Uses and Risks
- Some “superfoods” have been blown out of proportion; however, some foods are clearly more nutritious than others (blueberries vs. Oreos)
– Myth #41: There’s no reason for healthy people to avoid nightshades…1:14:40
- Are Nightshade Vegetables Bad for You? An Evidence-Based Look
- Paleo auto-immune protocol
– Myth #42: Celery juice won’t cure your health problems…1:17:55
- Ben agrees
- Celery Juice: Benefits and Myths
- Celery isn't bad for you, but its benefits are limited
- Any benefit is usually from the celery leaf, not the juice
– Myth #43: You can lose weight without cutting carbs…1:21:07
– Myth #44: There are no known health risks associated with eating genetically modified foods (GMOs)…1:24:00
- Ben disagrees
- Research Exposes New Health Risks of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes and Salmon
- Ten Scientific Studies Prove that Genetically Modified Food Can Be Harmful to Human Health
- DNA from genetically modified crops have been shown to transfer to humans
- GMO corn has caused tumors in rats
- Glyphosate linked to birth defects and many more issues
- GMO risk assessment based on very little science recommendations
Resources mentioned in this episode:
– The article on vice.com mentioned throughout this series
– Red Yeast Rice: Benefits, Side Effects and Dosage
– Placenta – Worth Trying? Human Maternal Placentophagy: Possible Benefit and Potential Risks
– The Two Sides of the Story: Is Microwave Radiation Harmful?
– How Crystals Work: The Science of Crystal Healing
– Is a Colon Cleanse Actually Beneficial? What You Must Know…
– Contribution of Red Wine Consumption to Human Health Protection
– The French Paradox: Lessons for Other Countries
– Pharmaceutical Influences of Epsom Salts | Insight Medical Publishing
– Can Exercise Prevent Depression? Here's What the Science Says | Time
– Meditation is a Powerful Mental Tool – And for Some People It Goes Terribly Wrong
– Whole-Body Cryotherapy Decreases the Levels of Inflammatory, Oxidative Stress
– Should Men Cut Back On their Soy Intake?
– GPR30 Gene Polymorphisms Are Associated With Gynecomastia Risk in Adolescents
– Oral Contraceptives and Breast Cancer: A Review of the Epidemiological Evidence With an Emphasis on Younger Women
– Study Finds Weak Link Between Birth Control and Breast Cancer
– New Study Finds Relationship Between Birth Control and Cancer
– What is Hydrogen Water? Benefits & Effects – SelfHacked
– Fasting and Exercise: What Are the Benefits?
– Intermittent Fasting for Athletes: Benefits and Concerns
– IV Vitamin Therapy: Your Questions Answered
– Fat Loss Showdown: Does HIIT or Steady State Cardio Burn More Fat?
– Superfoods: Health Benefits, Uses and Risks
– Are Nightshade Vegetables Bad for You? An Evidence-Based Look
– Celery Juice: Benefits and Myths
– Low-Fat vs. Low-Carb? Major Study Concludes: It Doesn't Matter for Weight Loss
– Research Exposes New Health Risks of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes and Salmon
– Ten Scientific Studies Prove that Genetically Modified Food Can Be Harmful to Human Health
– Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton
– Mind to Matter by Dr. Dawson Church
– Fit Vine Wine (Use code: GREENFIELD for 10% off)
– BGF podcast w/ Todd White of Dry Farm Wines
– Estrogeneration by Dr. Anthony Jay
– BGF Podcast with Dr. Craig Koniver
– Kion: My personal playground for new supplement formulations, Kion blends ancestral wisdom with modern science. Ben Greenfield Fitness listeners receive a 10% discount off your entire order when you use discount code: BGF10.
– Four Sigmatic: I’ve been using Four Sigmatic products for a while now and I’m impressed by the efficacies of their mushroom products. I use them. I like them. I support the mission! Receive 15% off your Four Sigmatic purchase when you use discount code: BENGREENFIELD
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18 thoughts on “Part 2: How To Identify The Lies That Popular Media Spews About Wellness (& My Reply To “The Most Overhyped Wellness Promises, Debunked”)”
My ex tried this product, a 21 day program, and she went from 180 to 155 in a month. It is cheap and scientifically effective. My aunt and niece are starting this week and we are excited to see the results!
If anyone wants a product that works, try this out! Feel free to message me if you need advice!!!
https://bit.ly/2kA88eR The BEST weight loss program without a doubt!
As someone who has been using the kitchari cleanse and hates the celery part (its a pain in the ass to be juicing all that celery) does this mean I can pretty much skip that part of the process?
I noticed you mentioned doing a probiotic enema after you did the colon cleanse. Do you have any recommendations for a good clean probiotic enema product? Also Would a coffee enema or an oil enema wipe out probiotics in the colon? I typically do a coffee enema followed by an oil enema with sesame oil and a little castor oil, in your opinion, would repopulating with a probiotic be necessary after that?
I think with wine they are very slightly correct in that some people use the health benefits of wine to drink to excess. which like everything else, the excess is yes excess and not healthy in any way. Basically, their entire article is worthless and untrue.
another sort of point of order, Sweet potatoes and yams are not nightshades.
would it be possible to link to the studies that show benefits of Hydrogen water, I can only find that japanese study that refutes the efficacy. My step father has parkinsons and it would be helpful if I could recommend. Thanks
Ben, Ancient Minerals is Mg Chloride not Mg Sulphate.
My wife had a tonic clonic seizure after a 24hr fast, eating only 2 cups of bone broth that day.. her first seizure ever..at 42 years old. Not saying this caused the problem, but it may have provoked it for sure. All the doctors want to do is give her anti seizure meds. She went to hospital and EEG, EKG, CT, MRI, basic blood work all came back normal. The paramedics at my house at 3.30AM said her blood gluocose was 96.
What testing do you recommend for her to do so that she can figure out what was the source of the seizure?
Much Appreciated !
The study that found intact genes from plants in humans blood (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0069805) has been completely debunked (https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/002279v2). The first comment on the article in question summarized clearly why this ‘finding’ is nothing more than contamination.
Did anyone figure out SNPs for the man-boob conversation and GPR30? I couldn’t find it on the raw data explore on 23andme and some googling mostly returned SNPs for me that don’t exist in my data
Crystals store information since the semiconductors in your computer are made of silicon crystals ? I’m not sure I should laugh or cry at the nonsense in this episode.
Laugh, it healthier 😂
Microwave ovens emit radiations even when not in use ? Can you elaborate ?
Sounds like the website needs some shrooms or maybe they had to many… Love listening to you on my
morning fasted walks. DAILY!
Ben, I have mad respect for your intelligence and your passion. There is no way I will read the Vice article. I’m not going to give the “we hope you die sooner people” or whomever is behind this nonsense the website traffic. Really enjoyed this podcast! Thanks!
I think Ben is using MgCl (magnesium chloride) not MGSO4 (epsom salts). We use magnesium chloride in the outside bath. I don’t think it is a therapeutic dose but certainly a soporific one. Not sure the effect isn’t due to 40 º water, the Southern starry sky (the Southern Cross and Magellanic Clouds are easily seen from the bath) or just being there alone, but it works a treat.
Both MgCl and MGSO4 are both cattle supplements and cheap as chips.
So, so right about working out and depression. I was put on Lexapro years ago, got fat and had no male energy at all. I got off it and started going beast mode in the gym. After a hot and sweaty workout I felt great and certainly NOT depressed. I worked out like this for about a decade and one day my daughter told me I was an “Aging Athlete in a Fat Suit.” That’s when I finally discovered that exercise without nutrition just cures the depression. After 2 years of keto and biohacking my testosterone, I am lean, mean and have, according to a woman at the gym (the age of my daughter!), “the body of a 25 year old.” I had not seen my abs in close to forty years and now I do–and so do the ladies, gents. I also get greeted every morning with the most potent indicator of all of male health and I had rarely if ever been seeing that after I hit 40.
Another myth is that you cannot halt and reverse sarcopenia–you can, I have, and one word: creatine.
Microwave cooking: https://www.greenmedinfo.com/anti-therapeutic-action/microwave-cooking