Episode #357 – Full Transcript

Affiliate Disclosure


Podcast from: bengreenfieldfitness.com/357

[0:14] Introduction

[2:21] Obstacle Dominator Podcast

[4:23] Giveaway on Snapchat

[5:16] News Flashes/Ketones and Ketosis

[9:38] Tour de France’s Chris Froome and Cutting Back on Carbs

[12:42] The Great Olive Oil Hoax

[16:58] How to have a Lean and Mean Baby

[20:28] Casper Mattresses

[22:38]  FitLife Organifi Green Juice

[24:49] Ben’s Calendar

[28:12] Grant’s question on what’s the ultimate guide to napping

[51:41] How much coffee to drink if pregnant or breastfeeding

[58:12] Maintaining muscle during a long endurance exercise

[1:18:07] What is a Warrior Gene vs. a Worrier Gene?

[1:29:00] Summary of Ben’s recommendations

[1:29:26] iTunes review of the week

[1:33:27] End of Podcast

Ben:  In this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Show:  The Great Olive Oil Hoax, Warrior Genes vs. Worrier Genes, Maintaining Muscle During Endurance Exercise, The Ultimate Guide to Napping, and much more.   

He’s an expert in human performance and nutrition, voted America’s top personal trainer and one of the globe’s most influential people in health and fitness.  His show provides you with everything you need to optimize physical and mental performance.  He is Ben Greenfield.  “Power, speed, mobility, balance – whatever it is for you that’s the natural movement, get out there! When you look at all the studies done… studies that have shown the greatest efficacy…”  All the information you need in one place, right here, right now, on the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.

Ben:  Rachel, I feel free as a bird this morning.  

Rachel:  Really, why is that?  

Ben:  Free as a little bird because I’m not wearing my pirate patch on my eye anymore. 

Rachel: Why on earth were you wearing a pirate patch, Ben? 

Ben:  I had a pirate patch on all day yesterday.  And the reason I had a pirate patch on was because something scratched me in the eye at least, I think this is what happened.  My wife says I have seasonal allergies but considering that I woke up this feeling fine and dandy, I don’t think it’s seasonal allergies.  I think something scratched me in the eye while I was riding my dorky stand up elliptical bike around the neighborhood the other night because I woke up, and my eye was swollen and it was watery and red and tearing, and the only way I could function all day long was to put a pirate patch over the eye.          

Rachel:  I love that you have a pirate patch just hanging around your house. 

Ben:  (chuckles) It’s actually an eye patch, I just call it a pirate patch.  It’s not marketed as a pirate patch.  It’s just the eye patch from Walgreens pharmacy.  Anyways though, I actually have a whole video of me wearing the eye patch because Hunter McIntyre and I recorded an episode of my other podcast.  The one that’s I guess is highly offensive or at least slightly offensive.  It’s called the Obstacle Dominator, and you can listen to and watch Obstacle Dominator 62, what you do is you go to obstacledominator.com, click on 62 and it’s actually a very interesting episode.

We spent an hour talking about how genetic testing influences a supplement choice, fitness choice like what kinda workout that you’re gonna do and kinda looked at Hunter ‘coz he’s a freak of nature, he’s the top ranked Spartan athlete on the planet.  So we went over all his results and I was wearing the pirate patch and drinking my usual Kombucha vodka mix, and it’s quite entertaining.

Rachel:  We’re you feeling extra piratey?  

Ben:  Well, I do have a pirate joke for you.  Are you ready? 

Rachel:  I’m ready.  

Ben:  What did the pirate say on his eightieth birthday?  

Rachel:  What?         

Ben:  I’m eighty!

Rachel:  (laughs) That’s a good one, Ben.

Ben:  Yeah.  Thank you.

News Flashes:

Ben:  Hear this noise, Rachel? 

Rachel:  I can hear it.  What is it?  

Ben:  I’m turning the hand crank on my desk because it’s not the level I want.  I have one of these hand crank desks that goes up and down.  I opted to go for this instead of the push button because frankly, I…    

Rachel:  Extra muscle? 

Ben:  Yeah, I can get swole.  I can get swole while I’m working.  

Rachel:  Build those guns.    

Ben:  And then I also have this going right now, listen.  Do you hear that?  Li’l beep?   

Rachel:  Yes.  

Ben:  So I’ve got this peppermint oil diffuser and I can put it on intermittent mode where it will diffuse peppermint oil every ten seconds then turn off for ten seconds.  Or… 

Rachel:  I have had so many questions about your diffuser.  We need to put a link in the show notes to it.     

Ben:  We should.  We’ll put a link in the show notes.  I’ll do a story on it soon.  Perhaps, I’ll give because I’ve been giving away a lot of things on Snapchat.  So maybe I’ll give one away on Snapchat. 

Rachel:  Brilliant! 

Ben:   And a little bottle of essential oil.  That’s what I’ll do, ok?  So if you’re listening in go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/snapchat where in the past 2 days I’ve given away blue light blocking glasses, Aztec sea salt and a whole box of mushroom coffee.  I’ll give away an essential oil diffuser if you happen to be a Snapchat person, if not you suck and you’re missing out on an essential oil diffuser, but I’ve got the peppermint oil going on this one and I’m gonna put it on full-on mode where it’s gonna diffuse the whole time we’re podcasting, so that I basically have the cognitive power of someone really smart.  I can’t think of a superhero who has cognitive powers.

Rachel:  It hasn’t kicked in yet, Ben, has it? (giggles)    

Ben:  No (chuckles), it hasn’t apparently.  We’ll wait on that.  Anyways though, so speaking of cognitive powers though, this is the portion of the show of course where we go over news flashes and the latest greatest things that have come to light in the past week. And one thing that a lot of people will swear by for cognitive performance because it can be used as a replacement for glucose in neural tissue is this concept of ketones and ketosis. And there was a brand new study in cell metabolism that finally reported on the testing done by DARPA which is the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency which is the research branch of the United States Army.

So what happened here was and this is something I talked briefly about in a podcast episode with Dr. Veech about ketone drinks.  We talked about this ten million dollar request that the United States Army sent out to DARPA to have DARPA help develop an efficient food that soldiers could take into the battlefield.  When I interviewed Dr. Veech he talked about how he was involved with this research and had developed what is called ketone esters which are slightly different than what you’d typically find when it comes to these ketone powders that you can buy on the market and mix in the smoothies or a glass of water or whatever, ketone esters are very expensive, very difficult and time consuming to make.  But they have finally been able to test them and they did it in this new study and I’ll link to the study in the show notes if you go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/357.

Ultimately, what they found was that when they took highly trained endurance athletes, it allowed them to clock up to an extra 400 meters distance to their workouts by switching their metabolism or their source of cellular energy from glucose to ketones.  And it’s very interesting because one of the other things that they found was that consuming the ketone esters would cost a very, very low amount of lactic acid which is a byproduct of glucose utilization by muscle cells to be present in these athletes, and so not only were they able to exercise at a much higher intensity but they were also able to be less sore post-workout.  So again these things are very expensive, very hard to get your hands on right now compared to the more popular ketone salts that you can find in the market, but this is the first study.

Rachel:  So what are the higher level of differences between the esters and the salts? 

Ben:  We go in to that a bit in the podcast if folks want to, let’s put a link in the show notes, Rachel because Dr. Veech and I geeked out on this a little bit.  Ultimately, here’s the story on this.  Ketone esters appear to be able to be utilized by the body a little bit more naturally than ketone salts.  However, I do not agree with what Dr. Veech said in the podcast which is that you would have to take copious amounts of salt at a very, very high level that could damage the body to be able to get all the benefits that you could get out of say like, a ketone ester.  I think that these ketone salts that are out there that people can use, and we’ll talk about them actually a little bit later because I think we’ve got a question from someone about hunting and hiking, and how to maintain energy levels during long periods of time and also maintain muscle.

We’ll talk about that later on but ultimately, what this comes down to is if you want the best of the best, you would have to get your hands on these ketone esters.  They’re not that available yet, but at the same time they have finally tested them and they have been shown to be extremely efficacious when it comes to both altering fuel preference in the body, and also enhancing in this case a 30 minute test.  The cyclists in the study were able to cover an extra 400 meters which is actually very, very significant.  And that is huge, that’s like illegal performance enhancing drugs and then some.           

Rachel:  Wow, that’s exciting stuff! 

Ben:  Yeah, so we’ll link to that in the show notes.  And speaking of illegal performance enhancing drugs, let’s talk about the Tour de France, shall we?    

Rachel:  Yes, let’s talk about it.

Ben:  So there was a very interesting article on Chris Froome who won the Tour de France.  We talked about Chris before, we actually talked about him when we discussed nasal breathing.  Chris is a guy who wears this thing called the turbine in his nose when he’s competing, and it allows him to basically breathe through his nose and more heavily oxygenate the air because that’s something that happens with deep nasal breathing.  It’s why using one of these Breathe Right, I think it’s called the Breathe Right.  It’s not those nasal strips, Rachel on my right… breathe right.

Rachel:  I’m not sure.  Breathe Right, I’m not sure, yeah.  I’ve not heard of them.

Ben:  They don’t have these in Australia? 

Rachel:  Not that I know of.   

Ben:  Just smear vegemite all over. 

Rachel:  They probably do.  Someone’s gonna comment and say: ‘Rachel, terrible.”  

Ben:  Yes, so he uses this thing called the turbine but this particular article that I’ll link to is more about his diet because you know, speaking of ketosis, I thought it was very interesting he commented, actually his wife who they interviewed, I believe it was his wife, yeah,  his wife they interviewed, she says, he’s got such a sweet tooth but he’s found out that if he does cut back on the carbs, the weight does come down a lot easier than it does in the past and cutting out foods like breakfast cereals and a lot of the wheat products and bread but still eating the right food, he is able to not feel hungry during the day.  He’s still lean but his muscles look a lot more defined.  And it goes…

Rachel:  So he’s not losing muscle. 

Ben:  It goes in to how unlike many cyclists, he’s kind of like sworn off starchy carbohydrates and he’s now basically eating primarily organic fruit, organic vegetables and meat.  So he’s adopted a little bit more of these kinda like ketotic approach.  He set up his fat intake, he’s doing more eggs and its interesting how professional athletes are beginning to kinda tap in to these concept as well including the winner of the Tour de France, although I’m sure at some point I would let, what do you think the prediction to be like in the next year we’ll find out there’s some crazy performance enhancing drugs ‘coz…

Rachel:  Let’s hope not.

Ben:  They always inevitably discover about these guys, there’s something getting injected into the right butt cheek that we didn’t know about, but that they weren’t able to hunt down until later after the fact.  But let’s keep our fingers crossed that he’s clean and that just comes down to either he’s sneaking in these ketone esters that we talked about or maybe it’s that as the article says, goodbye carbs.  So it’s nice to see some athletes are swearing off carbohydrates at least in a high amount from deleterious sources.

Rachel:  Right, yeah.

Ben:  Like breakfast cereals and things like that.  So read that article if you’re a cyclist if you’re interested in how athletes are limiting carbohydrates and still succeeding.  So speaking of fats, let’s continue down this road, my segues are awesome.                

Rachel:  Like yeah, that definitely is kickin’ in, isn’t it? 

Ben:  The olive oil.  The olive oil in your kitchen cupboard maybe an imposter and the headline of this article is most of us are blissfully ignorant about how much rancid olive oil that we use.  What the article goes into is how Congress assigned a job to the FDA to begin sampling imported olive oil to see whether it’s adulterated or fraudulently labeled.  And the idea here is that there’s this long history of scandal in the olive oil world in which in many cases low quality olive oil that is rancid has been masquerading and labeled as extra virgin olive oil when in fact it is not, and in many cases it’s mixed with other vegetable oils and doesn’t contain any of the antioxidants or the flavonols or the polyphenols or many of the other things that we tend to find in good olive oil.           

Rachel:  We’ve all become so used to meeting the local of these stuff that we can’t tell the difference anymore.

Ben:  Well, if you eat or if you drink, you can almost really eat, you can almost chew on a good olive oil.  You’ll find that it’s bitter that you get a lot of like, ten flavors in it very similar to drinking like a very good herbaceous wine like a Chianti and it messes with your taste buds in very cool ways.  It’s like an explosion of flavor in your mouth but those flavors include things like bitterness and sourness, and things like we’re not used to tasting in olive oil.

I’m actually a member of an olive oil club in which every quarter, 3 bottles of olive oil gets shipped to my house and I compare it to what I see at the grocery store.  There’s little green flakes floating around in it.  It’s like a little bit, ah well, it’s definitely non-transparent but it’s cloudy.  It’s greenish.  It’s yellow.  You pour it into a shot glass and I do this when the very first bottle comes, I’ll pour it into a shot glass and pass around the table for my wife and kids and me to taste.  Very similar again to wine and you can pick out all these really interesting flavors, and a big part of this is for example polyphenols they’re very, very bitter but they’re very, very good for you, right?  This is a big, big part of the antioxidants that you get in olive oil.  You get all these tastes that you don’t get in an olive oil that you get from the grocery store, and they’re stored in these glass bottles that are non-see through, non-transparent bottles.  That’s the way olive oil should be, but this article goes into how we have no idea especially here in the US where olive oil should really taste like.           

Rachel:  Yeah.  I can see that, definitely. 

Ben:  Or even look like. Yeah.

Rachel:  This probably a dumb question but I’m gonna ask it.  I’m curious what is so wrong about the olive oil going rancid and us eating it? 

Ben:  That’s such a dumb question. (chuckles)    

Rachel:  (laughs) 

Ben:  Basically oxidized fats.  So when you oxidize a fat and consume that fat, whether the fat has been oxidized from light exposure or storage problems or anything else, that fat has peroxides formed in it and those can cause the build-up of free radicals in your body which can lead to among other things DNA damage, increase risk for cancer and essentially something that’s supposed to be good for you, being bad for you when you consume it.  Plus it just tastes like crap…         

Rachel:  Yeah, we’ll that’s a bummer.  

Ben:  … versus a good olive oil. 

Rachel:  Unless you’re used to it tasting like crap, then it tastes totally normal.

Ben:  I think everybody should have a good olive oil and a good sea salt.  I’m gonna count on it, and it doesn’t have to be the same brand.  I’ll use olive oils from Chile, Spain, I’ll put a link in the show notes to this Olive Oil Club that I’m a member of in case anybody wants to join this little club where I get the 3 bottles sent to me, but I’ll also have black Hawaiian lava salt and Himalayan pink salt and Aztec rock salt and different forms of salt, different forms of olive oil around and geez, I mean, I’m not a great cook but I can make anything taste pretty damned good once I throw in a little bit of olive oil and some good salt.

Rachel:  Some good salt.  I agree.

Ben:  Yeah.  So one last little mention of an interesting article for those of you who are planning on having a baby or hang around with babies or get exposed to babies, and then you give ém point during the day.

Rachel:  I do love the babies around me at the moment.  I got a new nephew, I got a new nephew-in-law, it’s all happening.

Ben:  I don’t even know what a nephew-in-law is.

Rachel:  Well he’s not technically my biological nephew.

Ben:  I’ll do the math later. (chuckles)

Rachel:  (laughs)

Ben:  This article appeared in the New York Times, and it talks about how we can stem obesity and having overweight kids by not only starting before birth but also taking advantage of some of the things that research has shown recently to act on obesity.  There’s 23 different genes that are known to increase the risk of a child becoming obese and many of them are triggered during infancy, during the time that a baby is inside mom and also shortly after a baby is born.  A lot of the article is not rocket science for example, when a woman consumes a lot of food as she’s pregnant and sugar goes up in her bloodstream that increases the chance that the child might be born with insulin resistance or increased risk of type 2 diabetes, or increased risk for being obese or overweight.

Rachel:  So don’t eat a lot of food. 

Ben:  Yeah, but there are other things like for example, things I didn’t realize in this article.  The father’s weight is important. Apparently, being heavy alters DNA in the father’s sperm and that changes gene expression and gets passed down to the next generation.  Meaning that if you’re a dad and you’re not taking care of your body and you’re shooting a little sperm around here and there, it turns out that that sperm is equipped to make fat people more than lean people which I guess unless you’re a Samoan is probably not advantageous for your child’s future.

Rachel:  It makes sense though, definitely.

Ben:  Yeah, so another interesting one is that a child’s preference for highly nutritious foods or the development of the sophistication of their palette is actually influenced by whether or not their mom when they’re getting breastfed, eats a large variety of nutritious foods because many of those slightly bitter compounds speaking of olive oil or sour compounds or some of the things that we tend to get exposed to, when say, we’re eating  wild plants and vegetables and a wide variety of everything from fish to grass-fed beef to eggs to all these highly nutrient dense foods, a child will tend to have a higher preference for these more nutritious foods if the mother is eating them while she is breastfeeding.

Rachel:  So she can eat a lot of food but she has to eat a lot of different types of food.

Ben:  Uhhmm, can’t eat a lot of sugar-spiking food.

Rachel:  Okay.

Ben:  That’s the one that tends to especially when the child is still in the womb that you’d want to be very careful with.  So interesting article, lots of things to think about and of course it goes in like antibiotics and gut health and all the usuals, but I thought that was interesting.  So if you dig babies especially lean babies and you wanna have more lean mean babies in the world.      

Rachel:  And you wanna have a fit baby.

Ben:  Check it out.  So we’ll link to this as well as all the other news flashes just got to bengreenfieldfitness.com/357.

Special Announcements: 

Ben:  So speaking of having babies, this podcast is brought to you by a mattress.    

Rachel:  Casper mattresses.  Brilliant.  

Ben:  Casper mattresses.  Springy, latex supportive memory foam, perfect for making babies on.  But actually the Casper mattresses are kinda cool.  So they have these in-house team of engineers that works at Casper, and I like to imagine that they’re all wandering around in white lab coats jumping up and down on mattresses maybe bouncing having pillow fights.  Anyways, that’s just my personal fantasy, but they’ve got this very breathable design and so especially now in the summer months when it’s warm outside and nobody wants to be hot and clammy and sweaty when they wake up.  They have this breathable design built into their mattresses that actually helps you to sleep cold.  It helps to regulate your temperature during the night and that’s actually very, very important for increased neuronal repair as you sleep.

Your resting heart rate as you sleep will drop lower if your sleep temperature is cooler during the night, and mattresses that tend to store a lot of heat can disrupt these sleep cycles you as can hot rooms, as can sleeping in too much clothing but these Casper mattresses are breathable.  They make breathable pillows, they make breathable sheets but they also make these breathable mattresses, and everybody who’s listening in gets a discount on Casper not only that, but a hundred a night risk-free trial.  So there’s no reason not to try these cool mattresses.  So the way that you can do this is you go to casper.com/ben, that’s casper dot com slash b-e-n and you use promo code Ben.  That gives you fifty dollars off of any mattress purchase from Casper.  By the way, Time magazine named it as one of the best inventions of 2015.            

Rachel:  That’s awesome.  What an accolade.  

Ben:  It’s the most awarded mattress of the decade.  

Rachel:  Wow!  That’s cool.  

Ben:  There you go.  And when you order it to your house, it comes with all those trophies.  

Rachel:  And when you go and you stay at Ben Greenfield’s house for the weekend in his spare room there’s a secret Casper mattress. 

Ben:  If you stay in my spare room there is a secret Casper.  It’s not secret, it’s right in the middle of the room.

Rachel:  (laughs) 

Ben:  This podcast is also brought to you by green juice.  And not just any green juice but the only green juice I’ve ever witnessed my wife actually consume because she likes the way it tastes, and that says something because she really is not a supplements person.  So Organifi Green Juice, this stuff is a gently dried super greens powder.  Would you like to know what is in it, Rachel? 

Rachel:  Tell me everything.

Ben:  Okay, so first of all they’ve got coconut water powder, ashwagandha root, red beet root, turmeric which is a great anti-inflammatory, and then they also throw in what’s called an alkaline greens blend in there which is wheat grass, horseradish tree so it goes great on primary [0:23:23.9] ______ , spirulina, chlorella and macha green tea.  So a whole host of components in there with very, very low amounts of sugars.  It’s sweetened with a monk fruit which is actually almost a negative glycemic index sweetener with a little bit of organic mint flavor, and a little bit of organic lemon and orange flavor in there.  So quite tasty.

Rachel:  Yeah, I’m curious what monk fruit tastes like, Ben.  Have you ever had it?

Ben:  The actual fruit monk fruit?

Rachel:  Yeah or even as a sweetener ‘coz I love FitLife green juice.

Ben:  I’ve had the sweetener.  It’s used now to sweeten many things because it doesn’t produce a pronounced insulinogenic response, so it’s used even in there’s another company called Zevia they make like sodas flavored with stevia and they use monk fruit extract in those as well.  I’ve never actually gotten my hands on an actual monk fruit though.

Rachel:  Interesting.

Ben:  I don’t profess to actually know what a monk fruit looks like.

Rachel:  Sounds like something from Southeast Asia.

Ben:  Possibly like a monk with a shaved head and a brown robe that looks like a brown fruit with little shaved head sticking at the top of it.

Rachel:  I think it might be from Southeast Asia and that it would make sense as to why it’s called monk fruit.

Ben:  Say I’m right.  But you can go to Organifi.com.  Organifi.com, and you get 20% off this stuff, just use discount code there.

And then finally just a few quick announcements for those of you who want a little fun and entertainment, I will be headed down to Portland this weekend.

Rachel:  Woohoo! 

Ben:  The weekend that the show comes out to race the Portland Spartan, and then later on that evening I’ll be doing the 4-hour Portland Hurricane Heat which just involves ungodly amounts of burpees and sandbag carries for 4 hours along with team building exercises.  They always send out like a secret video before the Hurricane Heat and for this particular I’m supposed to show up with 10 feet of manila rope, one inch manila rope with what is called a water knot tied in the middle of it.  So whenever you show up that you have some piece of equipment like the last Hurricane Heat that I did was 12 hours long and you show up with a kick ball and you had that kick ball on you during the entire race.   

Rachel:  Oh my goodness!

Ben:  The reason for the kick ball was we wound up with 50 pound packs on playing what’s the name of the game, dodgeball at midnight with the losers.  Every time they lost they have to do 50 burpees with the 50 pound packs on for midnight dodgeball.  And so, who knows.

Rachel:  That sounds fun and hard core at the same time.

Ben:  Yeah, who knows what the ropes will be for, but anyways, so Rachel lives in Portland, many of you may not know this.  So the day after that race we are going to do some live feeds for you probably on Snapchat without our phones and cameras.

Rachel:  Ben’s gonna let me plan his recovery day.

Ben:  And what do you have planned, Rachel?

Rachel:  It’s a secret.  You’ve got to follow us all day bengreenfieldfitness.com/snapchat.

Ben:  It’s a secret, but I know that it does involve Finnish saunas.

Rachel:  But you’re not allowed to know anything else.

Ben:  Stay tuned.  Also, for those of you in the Boulder or Denver, Colorado area, August 11-13, I’ll be there speaking at the Ancestral Health Symposium which is a fantastic collaboration of health and fitness and nutrition scientists along with lay people.  You don’t have to be a smart cookie with glasses and a lab coat to show up.  It is almost like I would say, like the Paleo f(x) for nerds.  It’s just health and fitness and nutrition fed through the fire house by a lot of really smart people except me.  I’m gonna be speaking about natural living versus biohacking and how to strike a balance between the 2.  So its 3 days long.  It’s an incredible event and you can still get in.  So I will link to that one in the show notes.

And then also directly after the Ancestral Healthy Symposium, I’ll be jetting over to Salt Lake City to compete in the National Championships for Train to Hunt.  And if you don’t know what Train to Hunt is, it’s essentially obstacle racing with weapons and it’s a ton of fun, a real hoot to go in and watch and cheer ahead if you want to and so that will be just outside of Salt Lake City, and you can go to the Train To Hunt website or go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/traintohunt and you’ll be able to check out all the details of that.  Just make sure if you show up to cheer that you do not get shot with an arrow because it’s probably one of the more dangerous spectator sports.

Rachel:  Bring some armor.

Ben:  Bring some armor.

Listener Q&A:

Grant:  Hey, Ben its Grant.  I saw a Snapchat story from you the other day and it pertained to napping in your daily schedule, but I saw that you said naturally you wake up about 20 to 40 usually 20 to 30 minute naps almost daily.  It’s part of your ritual and I was curious as to how you’re body naturally goes 20 minutes, 20-40 minutes, and wakes up by itself without an alarm.  And what it would mean if you go longer say 2 hours or 4 hour naps, 3 hours.  What that means.  If somethings’ wrong with your body or what that pertains to.  So thanks about the podcast.  Will follow you on social media and keep up all the great podcasts.        

Ben:  Rachel, do you nap?

Rachel:  I haven’t mastered the art of napping yet.  I nap, I fall asleep for 2 hours and then I ruin my sleep for the next night.  So tell me what I can do.

Ben:  When you nap you nap for 2 hours?

Rachel:  Yes isn’t that terrible?  I just can’t.  I’ve set to an alarm to wake up but then often I’ll sleep through that alarm so.   

Ben:  Interesting, but we’ll get in to why it is that when you nap depending in the timing of the nap and you’re sleep tonight before that you would fall asleep for 2 hours when you nap.  And by the way, actually it reminds me yesterday I did take a 2-hour nap because my eye was bothering me so much.  In the middle of the day I took CBD.  I took cannabidiol, you know the nature CBD that our company makes?     

Rachel:  Yeah, I love it.   

Ben:  I took 6 of those.

Rachel:  Six?!  (laughs)

Ben:  Sixteen milligrams of cannabidiol which is blended with lunch.

Rachel:  Oh my god!  Don’t try this at home, kids.

Ben:  Yeah, with lunch I did this.  Ashwagandha and lemon palm and magnesium took it and just crashed for 2 hours.  And of course, I always pay the price later on when I’m working late into the night because I slept for 2 hours in the afternoon.  But cannabidiol, if you do need to knock yourself out with a nap, will do the trick.

So anyways, napping.  It’s really interesting and if you listen in for the next, little bit you’re gonna know everything you need to know about how to take smart naps and why you should consider taking them.  So they’ve actually done electroencephalography measurements of people’s brains, and their brain waves and their brain activity when they nap versus when they do not nap.  And they have found that a midday siesta, a midday nap when timed properly, and I’ll tell how you how to time that properly, briefly.  Actually results in significantly increased EEG and brain activity better than exercise, better than caffeine when you take that nap.  So you almost get an extra day, it’s like a smart drug in a way.  Tony Robbins and I’m seeing Tony Robbins advertisements all over the place for his new documentary.

Rachel:  I’ve heard it’s brilliant.

Ben:  Yeah, I need to see it at some point.  But he says, not to nap.  He says, resist the nap urge by doing, I believe it’s push-ups is the thing that he recommends and you certainly do get an increase in blood circulation.  You get an increased level of what are called catecholamines when you do for example, exercise or slapping yourself in the face or caffeine or anything else as a replacement for a nap, but you don’t get this increase in alpha brain wave activity and EEG activity compared to what you get with the true neural boost of a nap.

So there’s something to be said for napping and when it comes to why that is, I think it’s quite fascinating to kinda think about the reasons why we might nap.  So for example, if you look at a lot of other animals that they have developed almost like a siesta habit in the mid-afternoon, and it’s to get around the midday heat.  Like people who hunt know what the worst time to be hunting, unless you’re doing some spot and stock and trying to catch an animal sleeping, which is actually how I shot my last deer was.  I was out in the middle of the afternoon and caught it while it was resting.

Rachel:  (laughs) Poor dear, I can’t help it.

Ben:  Yeah, I know what people are thinking now.  Ben, shot a sleeping deer, you know it’s more like this.  You can see the antlers, this was an axis deer.  So I caught the antlers from 30 yards and then you sit there waiting for the animal to move.  If you try to sneak up on it you’ll wake it up.  An animal will smell you and run.  But if you simply wait, it will eventually stir and then you can take your shot and try to take it down.

Anyways, though we digressed.  The idea here is that many animals have developed a siesta habit as a way of getting around the midday heat and we may have as humans have a little bit of this evolutionary or ancestral built-in mechanism for that.  There are also, when we look at lot of newborn babies as well as a lot of animals, we see them sleep at many times during the day.  And this appears to be somewhat advantageous for optimizing what are called memory circuits.  Meaning you can get enhanced short-term and long-term memory by engaging in some form of a sleep cycle at some point during the day.

Obviously, you get a huge amount of that at night, but you almost put a little bit of icing on the cake or a cherry on the cupcake, or whatever dessert analogy you wanna use to describe a dessert metaphor.  But the idea is that you increase the supply of neurotransmitters and the size of networks that are responsible for increasing your short and long term memory when you can get a nap in during the day.  And we’ve talked about this on previous podcasts, many animals do not get as deep a sleep as humans do when they sleep at night.  So you see animals like dogs are a perfect example, right lounging around during the day taking multiple what would be called polyphasic sleep cycles during the day.  Nap cycles that they put in various points throughout the day.  Humans don’t need that much to increase our memory or to increase neuronal repair because we sleep so well during the night.  But it appears that we do get a big memory boost and a big increase in that, again that EEG brain activity by napping at some point during the day.

Rachel:  So when is the best time to nap and how long should we nap for?

Ben:  (chuckles) Alright, so I will get in to that in just a second.  I’m gonna give you some rules for napping 101.  But there are a few cons and a few pros I would say to napping in case you’re still on the fence about it.  Now, when we get into the first pros, this is simply the cool people analogy.  You look at some very successful people like Winston Churchill, he would actually do a 2 to 3 hour naps in the afternoon.  Bill Clinton was a napper.  Napoleon was a napper, John F. Kennedy was a napper.  Thomas Edison was a napper.  Albert Einstein was a napper.  You get many successful politicians and world changers that seem to have this habit of locking themselves away at some point in the afternoon to nap.

I personally have the same habit around 1 to 2 pm in the afternoon and I’ll explain why I choose that time.  I simply disappear and anybody who’s in my house knows that they’re not gonna see me from anywhere from 2o to 60 minutes.  And I put in these binaural beats.  I use an app called a SleepStream and it plays binaural beats in each ear, and I put it in what’s called power nap mode and it lulls my body into sleep, and you can even put it into a mode where it will take you from stress called the stress to power nap mode where it will take you from various stressful binaural beats and pull you from these beta stressful brand waves down into your alpha brain waves, and then into delta brain waves as you engage in that nap.  First of all, cool people nap.  That’s number 1.  If that’s not…

Rachel:  Reason number 1 to nap, cool people.                                     

Ben:  If that’s not reason enough.  You know that you get the significant increase in brain wave and alertness, and this is especially useful if you have a creative profession in which you need to be creative in the afternoon or the early evening.  Because I do a fair amount of writing in the evenings, I find that it helps tremendously when I need to write or I need to play music such as work on my ukulele tunes in the evening.  So, as I mentioned also napping has been shown to increase what’s called memory consolidation especially when you nap and that takes place in the second half of the day.  It’s been shown to help combat sleep deprivation.

So we know that sleep deprivation can do things like decrease insulin sensitivity.  We know that it can increase the production of hunger hormones like ghrelin while decreasing the production of appetite regulating hormones like leptin.  Sleep deprivation can also vastly decrease your growth hormone production which is essential for muscle gain and fat loss, and you actually see less of a deleterious hormonal effect in nappers even when those nappers are sleep deprived, right even if they’re sleeping 3 to 4 hours a night you can reverse a lot of the hormonal issues associated with sleep deprivation when you nap.  And then they’ve also show in a couple of studies that napping can reduce blood pressure and can also increase cardiovascular health.  So, a few reasons.

Rachel:  That’s quite a list.

Ben:  Yes, but if you don’t time your nap properly, as you’ve alluded to, Rachel, can cause insomnia.  So proper timing mitigates this problem but napping can cause insomnia if you have a poorly timed nap.  It can also result in what’s called sleep inertia.  What this means is that we have sleep drive built in to our day where we get sleepier and sleepier as it gets closer to the evening.  And that’s part of our natural, normal circadian rhythm.  A poorly timed nap will shift that sleep inertia forward which is why yesterday I wasn’t tired until about 10:30 or 11:00pm.  I shifted my circadian rhythm forward.  And if I’m not careful a circadian rhythm that gets shifted forward can stick with you, right?  You can get to that point where you’re one of those people who just like, oh I can’t get to sleep until midnight that can among a ton of other issues like artificial light in the bedroom, not getting exposure to a lot of natural light in the morning etcetera, poorly timed naps can also cause that.

So anyways, how do you properly time a nap?

Rachel:  Yes, tell us.

Ben:  The very first this is that you need to measure the optimum length of the period between when you naturally awake and your nap to maximize the effectiveness of a nap.  So here is the key.  A nap should occur approximately 7 to 8 hours after you naturally wake.

Rachel:  So you say naturally wake which means not waking up to an alarm?

Ben:  No, I don’t recommend people wake up to an alarm anyways.  I recommend that people either use these phone apps that you set to say, I wanna wake at some point between 6 and 7 am.  The phone app detects when you are in your lightest stage of sleep between 6 and 7am.  Let’s say it occurs at 6:19am and it wakes you gently at 6:19am.  An even better approach would be to pair that with a natural light in the bedroom.  I believe withings and I will hunt this down and link to it in the show notes for you listening in.  I believe this is the Withings Aura if I remember properly.  It is a sleep sensor that produces light to wake you, and what that means is it doesn’t wake you with like a blaring alarm clock or rock music or something like that.  It’s just basically a very, very therapeutic or and therapeutic isn’t the right word.  It’s a very…

Rachel:  Gentle.

Ben:  Gentle.  Thank you, Rachel for supplying me with your Australian vernacular.  Gentle way to wake up.  So basically the whithings aura would be a perfect example of this.  The sunrise alarm clock would be another example but…

Rachel:  So I use the sunrise alarm clock, and so you then set it to sunrise and then the sun goes to level ten at its fullest, but then the alarm eventually goes off if you don’t wake up, but I found I never actually wake up to the sunrise part and always really wake up to the alarm.

Ben:  Hmmmm, yeah, so were you wearing a sleep mask or anything like that?

Rachel:  No, it’s just that the light didn’t seem bright enough to wake me up.

Ben:  Interesting.  You know, I would be interested to see your sleep cycles, see how much deep sleep you’re getting out if you ever track your sleep, but you may have some issues that are occurring during the night of sleep that are causing you to have what’s called oversleeping syndrome or need for more sleep.  I actually just wrote an article on this.  It hasn’t been published yet, it’s going to appear over at quickanddirtytips.com but it is about how one of the number one causes of a need to sleep no matter how much you sleep is sleep apnea.

Rachel:  Ooohh, interesting.

Ben:  Yeah, which can be fixed simply.  We have a few podcasts on it but it can be fixed with a mouth device that adjust your jaw while you sleep.  I would consider if I were you though looking into whether or not you have sleep apnea because if you have it, it can make you want to sleep more, sleep through alarms, feel groggy even if you’re getting 9 hours of sleep, etcetera.  So sleep apnea is something to look into.

Rachel:  Good, alright.  So 7 to 8 hours after waking up naturally is a great time for a nap.

Ben:  Exactly, that’s the perfect time for a nap.  So if you’re a 6am wake-time person, a perfect nap time for you would be 6am plus 7 hours to 8 hours.  You should be settled on for a nap between 1pm and 2pm.  Ok?

Rachel:  Yes.

Ben:  So once you exceed 8 hours, that’s where you start to shift your circadian rhythm forward and get more deleterious effects, etcetera.

The next thing is that a well scheduled nap, contrary to popular belief will not cause drowsiness later on in the day even if that nap is long, right?  You can take a sixty to ninety minute nap.  It’s not going to disrupt your circadian rhythm, to cause extreme grogginess for the rest of the day unless it’s a poorly timed nap.  As long as you’re napping 7 to 8 hours from the time that you wake up, then you’ll be fine in terms of that nap no matter how long it is not messing up your sleep inertia.

Rachel:  So 60 to 90 minutes.

Ben:  Uhmm, now some people will got through sleep cycles.  So sleep cycle would be like going from your phase 1 sleep down to your phase 4 sleep and back out.  So the recommendation is that you get in any given week about 35 of those sleep cycles, let’s say that you’re sleeping 7 hours a night, many people will go through 4 sleep cycles during the night.  Some people will go through 5, if you’re going through 4, it will definitely behoove you to get your 5th by taking a slightly longer nap in the afternoon.  If you’re getting 5 just fine during the night, 5 sleep cycles during the night, then you might just need a 10 to 20 minute power nap.  Does that make sense?

Rachel:  Yes it does, yeah.

Ben:  Ok cool.  So the next thing is you need to preferably time your least stressful activities to occur in that last hour before the nap, which is why you shouldn’t work hard during lunch.  I actually like to do lighter activities during lunch, any of my Facebooking or reading some Snapchat messages, or thumbing through a magazine that has come in the mail.  Something that doesn’t involve heavy and hard stressful activities for the hour before the nap.  You will have a better nap if you can do that.  And so, if you can program your day so that lunch is not stressful and lunch doesn’t involve a lot of heavy business meetings.  That’s best.

Rachel:  What about what we eat at lunch for the best nap?

Ben:  In terms of what you eat, that’s gonna be dependent on genetics.  It’s gonna be dependent on food tolerances etcetera.  I’ve found that extremely heavy meals cause me to become very groggy and almost a nap becomes a requirement more than an option.  I eat pretty light lunches.  I do things like miracle noodles which are a form of pasta but they’re made from shirataki, so it’s zero calories and zero glutinous.  So it’s just insoluble fiber and I’ll put those in a cast iron skillet with some tomato and some fennel seeds, a handful of olives and maybe about half of an avocado, some sea salt, some pepper, and I’ll just basically grill all that up very quickly and dump that into a bowl and eat it with a fork, or I’ll have just a bed of vegetables and sometimes I’ll put some sardines or some seeds or some nuts on there, but I don’t do big sandwiches or heavy soups or giant smoothies and things like that for lunch.  Lunch is pretty light for me.

Rachel:  And so if you were to eat a heavy meal and that was to make you require a nap, if you wanted to nap every day would that be a bad thing? Basically can food help you nap?

Ben:  The only thing I’d bear in mind is that if lunch is gonna be a very calorically dense meal, if especially staying lean is a priority for you that you realize you may need to go for a lighter breakfast, and/or lighter dinner, or if you decide lunch is gonna be that big meal.  Yeah, exactly.  And a meal before a nap is recommended.  It can help a little bit.  I just don’t like that meal to be super heavy.  I also don’t like to wake up burping up my meal because I feel like digestion shuts down a little bit when one sleeps which is true once you lie down.  So yeah, I’m careful.  I’m not super-duper heavy.

Rachel:  Okay.

Ben:  Tiniest amounts of caffeine in your system can interfere with the quality of that nap.  So you do wanna be careful.  Remember caffeine has a half-life of depending on the person whether you’re fast caffeine oxidizer vs. a slow caffeine oxidizer which you can determine via genetic testing.  Coffee can stick in your bloodstream for 3-6 hours which means that if you’re planning to take a nap around 1 or 2, you may need to have that morning cup of coffee or kind of done and dusted between 8 and 9am at the latest.  So, if you really want a good nap especially if you are a slow caffeine metabolizer or not a fast caffeine metabolizer which again you can test with genetics, consider not drinking mid-morning caffeinated beverages or late morning caffeinated beverages or ice tea with lunch or things along those lines.

So those are the main recommendations as far as napping goes but the biggest one, probably the biggest tip I can give folks is get that nap in about 7-8 hours after you’ve awoken and what I’ll do is, I’ll also, I’m writing a note to myself, I’ll link in the show notes to that Sleep Stream app that has the power nap function that I mentioned, and I’ll do a few other things when I settle down for a nap in the afternoon.  Like I will use a little bit of lavender for example, lavender essential oil on the upper lip to help with relaxation.  And I do nap with a sleep mask as well.

Rachel:  I’m also curious how devices like the SR1 impact napping.  Does that sort of have any effect?

Ben:  That’s a good question.

Rachel:  If you use SR1 the night before or something?

Ben:  For people who are listening in, the SR1 is a sleep device that emits what’s called a pulse electromagnetic field.  I actually put it on my body.  You’re supposed to wear it on your collar bone because that’s close to what’s called your brachial plexus which send a signal to your brain to produce more delta brain waves.  It induces a very, very deep sleep.  Some people find that they do wake groggy when they use that for a nap.  Some people find that if they can’t nap though, that actually allows them to nap quite well.  So, I don’t use it for a couple of reasons.  First, I find that I can nap just fine without it.  Second, I use it all night long, and part of me don’t want to become dependent on it for napping.  So I just don’t.  If I’m on a plane for example, I wanna take a nap on a plane, I’ll use it on a plane just ‘cause it’s small and portable, and frankly, anything I can do to get to sleep faster on a plane I’ll do, aside from Valium and copious amounts of alcohol which will cause you to go to sleep in San Francisco and wake up in Hong Kong because I’ve tried this.  Pretty easily, Valium and red wine is very potent combo.

Rachel:  It’s like time travel.

Ben:  You’re gonna feel like a million bucks afterwards but it can work, yes, like time travel.  So anyways, coming full circle, Grant basically says that I say, I naturally wake after a 20-30 minute daily nap and it’s part of my ritual, and he’s curious how my body naturally goes 20-40 minutes and wakes up by itself without an alarm, and what it means when I nap longer like 2-4 hours.  Basically, I answer to a lot of Grant’s questions in my explanation there but ultimately the body will wake naturally when it is ready, when it has consolidated the memories, when the brain has gotten the neural rest that it needs for the day.  And if I have slept 7-8 hours the night before, for me, that magic spot is 20-40 minutes.  That magic timeframe is 20-40 minutes.

If you nap longer, it can indicate like I mentioned to Rachel, that you have an underlying sleep condition like sleep apnea for example that is keeping you from getting enough high quality rest the night before, if you nap longer it could mean that you’re having too heavy of a lunch, if you nap longer it could mean you have an extremely cognitively stressful morning.  And finally, it could just mean you popped way too many cannabidiol capsules and knock yourself out into a coma.  So, it could be multi-factorial but ultimately, yeah, that is skinny on napping.

Rachel:  One quick last question.  If I would sleep track, would you recommend that I use the Oura?

Ben:  The Oura Ring for sleep tracking?

Rachel:  Yes, the Oura Ring.

Ben:  That’s good for looking at your sleep cycles but if you want to specifically see if you have sleep apnea and you don’t wanna order like professional sleep monitoring equipment that you stick up to your nose and all over your head while you sleep, best bet for you would just be a pulse oximeter.  You can get a pulse oximeter that will monitor whether or not your oxygen is falling at different times during the night.

So you can buy a pulse oximeter, and I’ll put a link in the show notes to the brands that will actually monitor what’s called your blood oxygenation levels all through the night, and what you’d want is to wake in the morning and see if there are specific periods during the night where your pulse oxygen starts to go from 98 and all of a sudden it’s down at 95, and 93, and 90, and if you see that that’s the case, it’s highly likely that you have sleep apnea, and highly likely that you should consider going to sleep professional to actually get a dental fitting for a mouth device that reduces the obstructive apnea while you sleep.  So, there you have it.

Rachel:  Okay.  Thank you.

Ben:  Yes.  And they’re quite attractive at parties too.

Rachel:  I was gonna say.

Ben:  Yeah.

Dalice:  Hi Ben, Dalice from Australia.  I love your podcast.  After your recent podcast with Dr. Chopra, I have a question about coffee when breastfeeding.  The study showed that coffee consumption had little impact on the child when pregnant.  Is this still the case when breastfeeding?  I have a 4.5 month old daughter, I want to know if I can safely drink caffeinated coffee when breastfeeding without affecting her.  We only drink good quality mold-free coffee.  Thank you, Dalice.

Rachel:  Well, I was really excited to listen to that podcast with Dr. Chopra because I love the idea of drinking 65 cups of coffee a day. (laughs)  It was so validating.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah.  I think one small intestines would probably wear away and just drop out your butt if you did actually drink 65 cups of actual coffee per day.  I’m guessing that will tear a guy that we’ve talked about in that podcast episode who was perhaps sipping a half a shot of espresso or something like that.  But when it comes to pregnancy, we do know that caffeine can cross the placenta from the maternal to the fetal bloodstream, and that the fetus only has a very slow ability to be able to metabolize or breakdown caffeine.

The interesting thing is that when you’re pregnant, maternal metabolism of caffeine also slows down during pregnancies.  That means caffeine lingers in moms bloodstream for a longer period of time.  So, we know that when you consume caffeine during pregnancy that it enters fetal circulation.  The problem is that there’s almost like a myth out there that this will cause for example birth defects or miscarriages, and I think that we need to look into the research on both this and breastfeeding to really decide whether a mom can get away with drinking coffee.

Rachel:  So, what is the research say?

Ben:  Well, there’s one big review of caffeine safety in pregnancy that they did in 2013.  And this was like a big cohorts study and what they found was that when we look at miscarriages there’s really not a big link assuming that you’re under 200 mgs of caffeine per day.  And an average cup of coffee is 100 mgs per day.  That there’s really not a big risk for or incident of miscarriage when you are drinking coffee moderately.  Okay?  So 1 to 2 cups a day of just a basic black coffee, alright, not red bull, not monster energy drinks, not no-dose pills but just a cup of coffee.

Now, you tend to see a few compounded variables though.  For example, studies have shown that women who consumed more caffeine while they’re pregnant also tend to be more likely to be smokers, they tend to drink alcohol in pregnancy, they tend to be older, and so all of those factors could increase miscarriage risks.  So you need to make sure that you pay attention to some of these studies and see whether or not they’re actually taking into account the lifestyle of the type of mom who tend to drink caffeine and coffee, and you know, snort crack and hangout with hookers all the time she’s pregnant.  So, that’s one thing.

Rachel:  So, what about the risk of having just a caffeine jacked-up baby instead of miscarrying?

Ben:  So, to answer your question about the effects of caffeine on the actual child.  There have been some studies that I’ve looked at the baby’s behavior under the influence of caffeine.  So, there’s one study where they looked at heart rate and sleep times, and found that even though the infants absorbed caffeine just like I just described, I mean in this case the moms were drinking up to 5 cups of coffee per day while breastfeeding, they didn’t notice any difference in the baby’s heart rate or in the baby’s sleep times.  In another study that they did and this was in 2012 in the Journal of Pediatrics, they also compared maternal caffeine consumption and breastfeeding moms to moms that didn’t breastfeed with caffeine in their systems, and found no significant differences in the sleep patterns of the babies.

Rachel:  So, is it just that caffeine is not affecting the baby?

Ben:  It doesn’t appear to be affecting them when it comes to increased heart rate or trouble feeding or slower ability to gain weight ‘cause of some big bump up in metabolism or anything like that, although there was one study in which they looked at babies that were dose with caffeine to treat, speaking of the devil, apnea because some babies especially premature babies get sleep apnea, and that’s again that complete drop in breath pattern while asleep that causes a big drop of oxygen levels while asleep.  And what they found was that when the breastfed baby is absorbing a high amount of caffeine because mom is drinking a lot of coffee, and in this case we’re talking about 10 to 20 times the amount of caffeine that we would see in these other studies, they actually did show an increased heart rate in the babies, they did show a little bit of trouble feeding, they did show slower weight gain, they did produce apnea as well in these kids but this was with copious amounts of caffeine.  I mean, we’re talking about like that Voltaire-esque, this would be like 10+ cups of coffee a day.  In most cases, when you look at all these different studies on caffeine and breastfeeding in the case of pregnancy staying under 200 mgs per day appears to have no deleterious effect on birth weight, miscarriages, et cetera, and for breastfeeding staying under 300 mgs per day appears to be just fine, and once your child is 5 to 6 months old, it appears to be a non-issue period.

Rachel:  Wow.

Ben:  So ultimately…

Rachel:  Babies are resilient.

Ben:  Babies are resilient and we’ve been completely lied to by, I don’t know, who would have lied to us about caffeine.  Who would profit from lying to us about coffee and caffeine?  Who’s the scapegoat?

Rachel:  Somebody who doesn’t sell coffee or caffeine.  That one I should say…  The baby food industry.

Ben:  Gerber.  Gerber is trying to get us to feed our babies pee mash and sweet potato puree….

Rachel:  While all they need is a cup of coffee.

Ben:  All they need is a good frappuccino baby.

Aleksi:  Hello Ben, this is Aleksi.  I love the podcast that I have been listening for many years now.  My question is regarding hiking.  I’m going to Norway for a hiking trip and I was thinking how would I keep myself healthy without losing too much muscle during the trip with the least amount of weight to carry.  And would that change if I were to hike for example a 2,000 mile Appalachian trail instead of a week-long hike?  Thank you.

Ben:  So Aleksi wants to have his cake and eat it too.  He wants to go on his big long hiking trip but stay completely swole.

Rachel:  Yeah, I guess that’s having his cake and eating it too, isn’t it?

Ben:  Well, everybody wants to finish their hiking trip and be able to flex off, right?  Fit in to their ‘welcome to the gun show shirt’.

Rachel:  (chuckles) Right.  Yes.  I’m misgiving, that’s what happening.

Ben:  Yeah.  So, maintaining.  What this comes on to you from me?  Like when I think about this.  It’s for anybody.  Let’s say you’re not a week-long hiker, let’s say you’re not necessarily completely in the Appalachian trail but you are an endurance exerciser or let’s just say, you have a high calorie burn in general due to your lifestyle.  I don’t know, maybe you’re a roofer or a construction worker, or who else burns a lot of calories during the day? A nurse?

Rachel:  Personal trainer?

Ben:  Surgeon?  Personal trainer?

Rachel:  Or a surgeon…

Ben:  Yeah.  But you don’t want to necessarily eat copious amounts of calories, or carry copious amounts of calories, carry heavy amounts of food as Aleksi noted when you hike you wanna stay relatively lightweight and I supposed rib-eye steaks are probably not the best fit for putting into a lightweight backpacking or…

Rachel:  Seven days…

Ben:  Yeah, or ‘man-in-a –can’ giant canisters of protein powder.  So, there are some shall we say, kinda clandestine would be the right word but small, portable, little known things that can give you a step up when it comes to essentially anabolism, and especially anabolism while you are extremely physically active.  Some a little bit fringe, some not so fringe.  So for example, there’s one in particular, why don’t we start with the fringe right away.  There’s one that I’m writing an article on right now and it’s called a Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator also a SARMs.  Rachel, I know you’re a complete nerd when it comes to SARMs.

Rachel:  I know everything about SARMs.  I just learned what the acronym meant.

Ben:  All the time, yeah.  So, these selective androgen receptor modulators actually contained what are called androgens.  And androgens are special kind of hormone that act as a ligand.  So I’m gonna add this to your vernacular.  What a ligand is, is all that is a molecule that’s link to another molecule.  A ligand – l-i-g-a-n-d.  And in this case, androgens connect to cellular androgen receptors.  Now, what that can do is it can replicate the effects of androgens which in the human body would cause things like muscle growth and anabolism, etc. but selective androgen receptor modulators are able to do this without causing a lot of the side effects that say, steroids can cause.  So, they can be taken orally, so you don’t need to inject them.  You don’t get a lot of the, again the deleterious side effects of taking steroids and the idea here is that they’re non-toxic, they don’t cause liver damage.

A lot of times when you’re taking testosterone or you’re taking steroids, you can get some bone loss and they’ve looked into SARMs and bone loss, and they don’t cause that.  A lot of times in men who are using testosterone replacement therapy or who are using steroids, they get prostate problems, they get (I’ll use the highly scientific term) ball shrinkage and you don’t get that when you use selective androgen receptor modulator.  It doesn’t interfere with what’s called your hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis.  This means that when you take testosterone (injectable testosterones, testosterone creams) via a negative feedback loop shut down your body’s own endogenous production of testosterone and should you ever stop that steroid or that testosterone replacement, you feel like crap for months afterwards.  You can’t get up, you have no drive, you’ve low motivation, low ability to put on muscle, low endogenous testosterone production.

You don’t get that when you use one of these selective androgen receptor modulators.  You also don’t get conversion of testosterone into estrogens or into something that can make you go bald which is dihydrotestosterone or DHT.  And you’ll see a lot of folks in the athletic or the body building industry using SARMs to prevent muscle loss and to assist with lean muscle development.  And you’ll even see these use for things like faster injury recovery, and increase power and better joint healing abilities, etc.

Rachel:  So, are there any cons to these?

Ben:  Cons to SARMs?  You can if you overdo it.  In women, you can get a little bit of a development of male characteristics.

Rachel:  Wow!  That’s kind of a big deal, Ben.  (laughs)

Ben:  Alright, big eyebrows, big …  So you’d wanna be careful.  In men who overdo SARMs, there is some risks for some of the same things we would get with a huge production of DHT which should be like acne, and baldness, and even a little bit of gynecomastia, but these would be high doses taken for a long period, okay?  So a typical SARMs cycle would be running it for just 4 weeks for example, like taking a SARMs orally and example of those should be like 10 milliliters for about 4 weeks.

And one that I’m writing an article about right now that I’ve really doing a lot of research on is one called LGD-4033.  That’s one that’s most used for things like building muscle and increasing drive, and simultaneously reducing body fat percentage without taking hormones or without taking steroids.  For all of you listening in especially those of you who don’t want to risk extreme public embarrassment because you compete in a sport that involves eager and testing, you can’t use this if you compete in a World Anti-Doping Association sanctioned sport even though a 10th of the world’s athletic population uses SARMs they’ve approximated.

So, a ton of pro-athletes use SARMs even though they’re not supposed to.  However, if you’re just hiking the Appalachian Trail and you wanna maintain skeletal muscle mass without deterioration of for example, type 2 muscle fibers, would be the big one.  This is going to assist with development of SARMs.  Taking something like LGD-4033, a little bottle out there on the trail and taking 1 dropper full which is about 10 milliliters under the tongue, on a daily basis could help out quite a bit with maintenance of lean muscle during endurance exercise along with exercise sessions.

Rachel:  Good.  So that’s number 1.

Ben:  So that’s one.  LGD-4033, SARMs.  Another one, I might as well just stay fringed.  BPC-157 – that is an injectable peptide.  This one is legal based on World Anti-Doping Association and you saw the regulations, and it’s simply a sequence of amino acids.  So, you’ve heard of perhaps branched chain amino acids or essential amino acids, this is like that on steroids.  They’ve done a huge number of studies and shown everything from enhanced repair of tendons and muscle, and intestines and teeth and bone.  I’ve got a big article on BPC-157 and I mean, you can take an insulin syringe and just spray it orally into your mouth to enhance repair of gut damage.  You can take any specific muscle group that is injured and poke it into the little bit of skin to the injury site and inject it and rub it in or massage it in and get extremely enhanced muscle repair.  I’m talking about like 10 times faster.  I’ve done with a hamstring injury for example and completely banish it within a few days.

The other thing that you can do is you can maintain muscle by either using, it’s systemic right, so you can orally, you can inject it anywhere and it’s gonna have full body systemic effects.

Rachel:  Wow.

Ben:  And so, you can literally use this while out on trail and just inject it anywhere or take it orally, and it help to maintain muscle mass or even to build muscle mass.  So, it’s somewhat fragile, you have to be careful with it getting jarred around, you have to reconstitute it.  So it comes as a powder and you mix water and I’ve got all the instructions on a link.  If you go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/357, I’ll put a link to the article that I wrote about it in the show notes.  But basically, it’s similar to SARMs in an extremely small bottle that is extremely potent.  Alright, as I’d say in Alladin, ‘phenomenal cosmic power’.

Rachel:  One question.  If I took it orally for an injury in my wrist, would it still have the same impact as injecting?

Ben:  Not the same.  Less but still an impact.

Rachel:  Okay.

Ben:  Yup.  If you just don’t like to shove needles into body parts.

Rachel:  Right.  So we have SARMs and BCP-157.  What’s next?

Ben:  So another one that I’d recommend would be something that we’d touched on earlier, and that would be use of exogenous ketones.  Because by utilizing ketones rather than your own muscle glycogen or rather than glucose, you can spare blood glucose, spare muscle glycogen, and keep yourself from having breakdown your own storage fuel as energy.  And the cool thing about ketones is that they’re very potent and can be carried in light amounts because that’s were talking about, things that are light, portable, easy to carry but that can maintain muscle mass similar to a rib-eye steak or a protein shake.

So, there are a lot of different types of ketones out there but because the consumption of what are called medium chain triglycerides or MCTs actually enhance the production of ketone bodies by the liver, I am a fan of a specific form of exogenous ketones.  Again, if you don’t want to spend $3,000 on that ketone ester developed by DARPA that I mentioned earlier but you want something a little bit more palatable for the pocket book.  A pretty good one would be for example, there’s a company called Keto-OS and that is ketone mineral salts that have been blended with a high fiber mediun chains triglyceride formation.

So you get the benefits of both exogenous ketones along with medium chains triglycerides.  The small packet relatively light, you would reconstitute in water and the ingredients are just MCT powder, beta hydroxybutyrate which is the ketone, and then Stevia and you can choose.  They’ve got one that’s caffeine-free and one that they called charged that has caffeine in it, but that’s it.  And the other thing that you should know is that ketones act as a natural diuretic, so you may need to make sure that you increase your electrolyte and your water intake when you start using something like this.  But that would certainly be something that if I were on a long trail hike I would definitely throw into the mix would be this Keto-OS blend of powdered MCTs with exogenous ketones in the form of beta hydroxybutyrate.

Rachel:  Yes! Good feel.

Ben:  So, yes!  And we’re increasing everybody’s vocabulary with all sorts of big words like LGD-4033 and SARMs and beta hydroxybutyrate.  Next, we would go for something very nutrient-dense.  So, I talked about how BPC-157 is an anabolic amino acid, one other thing that has a lot of anabolic amino acids in it including 18 of the 20 amino acids and all 8 of the essential amino acids that your body can’t produce making it a complete protein is spirulina.  Spirulina has got more beta carotene in carrots, it’s got more iron than spinach, it’s got more antioxidants than blueberries, it’s got more chlorophyll than any dark leafy green shake, and it has a nutritional profile that’s very, very similar to breast milk with is close to a perfect food.  You can get spirulina in like chewable tablet, you can get it in powder form, but considering the dense amount of amino acids in it, and this is especially use for vegans or vegetarians who can’t use an animal-based amino acid or a steak or chicken or things like that that are very anabolic, this is lightweight, it’s easy to carry and it acts like an oral full spectrum amino acid with the vegan twist and plus it turns your mouth green, so.

Rachel:  Definite out of benefit.

Ben:  You can be that person on the Appalachian trail with green stains all around your mouth ‘cause you just eaten, I don’t know, what green animal would be out in the forest that one would be chasing out in the forest and eating like a zombie…

Rachel:  A frog!  A frog.

Ben:  A frog, yes you’re like a frog eating Appalachian trail hiker.  So spirulina would be another one and of course along with spirulina for the similar amino acid effect just essential amino acids.  So, they’ve done a host of studies on stopping muscle breakdown with the use of branched chain amino acids.  The problem with branched chain amino acids is that while they can keep muscular catabolism from occurring during long term endurance exercise, they do not result in the same anabolic effect as essential amino acids ‘cause there’s only 3 of them in branched chain amino acids, whereas, an essential amino acid blend is gonna have 8 to 9 different amino acid in it.  And branched chain amino acid can also spike blood sugar levels and cause some other issues that I’m not a fan of.

And finally, they don’t lead to the staving off of central nervous system fatigue.  The same as essential amino acids do because essential amino acids will compete for tryptophan in the brain and keep tryptophan or ‘sleeping turkey thanksgiving molecule’ from crossing the blood brain barrier from interacting with the cellular receptors for tryptophan.  And so, ultimately an essential amino acids blend and I’ll put a link in the show notes to the one that I like called Nature Aminos would be another one to include.  So, where we at so far with what we have listed?

Rachel:  So we got spirulina, nature aminos, there’s one more that I think you wanna talk about.

Ben:  SARMs, BPC, uh colostrum.  Yeah.  Colostrum is huge.  I’m a big fan of that.  It’s such a potent, and what it is is what you’d find in breast milk in the fluid that comes out right before the breast milk comes out.  In like a goat, cow, mom, whatever.  I’m a big fan of a goat-based colostrum because a goat-based colostrum unless you have a pregnant woman producing breast milk, you can carry out there with you on the Appalachian trail, it’s very biocompatible with the human body, meaning that it’s a small protein that gets absorb very well compared to like a cow-based colostrum.  And colostrum has a huge number of growth factors in it that can do everything from heal the lining of a leaky gut which is what it does in an infant to cause actual growth of muscle tissue in adult humans.  And you can simply take this for example in the morning when you get up, 4 to 6 capsules of colostrum and it has some very potent boosting effects.  The only caution I’ll give you if you’re hiking with it, it is it can’t be heated.  You need to be careful when you heat it.  It enhanced with paring with probiotics.

So if you take it at the same time that you take probiotics, all the better but know that whether using that or probiotics, you just need to be careful that it doesn’t get heated up too much.  However, not only is it a big performance enhancing aid but colostrum has a very, very potent anabolic effects.  So, if you’re just trying to get swole as much clear as possible, you would be on colostrum, spirulina, aminos, some kind of exogenous ketones, some BPC-157, and then if you aren’t competing in a World Anti-Doping Association or you saw the sanction sport, something like SARMs, like LGD-4033, and you’ll get big.  As a matter of fact, Rachel, I don’t think I mention this on the show before, but aside from the SARMs agent, I’m actually using everything that I just talked about while lifting heavy.

Rachel:  Hmm, well, there you go.

Ben:  Because I got cast on a TV show that I’ve got to put on muscle for.

Rachel:  What TV show?

Ben:  The Broken Skull Challenge?

Rachel:  Oh wow!

Ben:  That’s on CMT, on Country Music Television but involves heavy… go watch if you’re listening in.  Just do a search for Broken Skull Challenge or actually we’ll put a link in the show notes.  The defending champion right now, speaking of the devil, we talked about him earlier is Hunter McIntyre, my partner in crime over at Obstacle Dominator.

Rachel:  (laughs)

Ben:  But you have to fight, you have to lift heavy objects, you have to basically…

Rachel:  You gonna fight Hunter?

Ben:  I don’t know if Hunter would be on the show when I’m on it but you have to be a meathead so, I am trying to put on some muscle to become a meathead so that in a few weeks I’ll be able to compete when I head down to firm the Broken Skull Challenge in LA.

Rachel:  That’s gonna be fun.  I can’t wait to see that.  So, that is basically how Aleksi can have his cake and eat it too.

Ben:  Boom!

Rachel:  Is it like out there in the world that people should drink breast milk?

Ben:  People?

Rachel:  Like why do we drink and eat colostrum and we don’t eat and drink like our own breast milk?

Ben:  So, my personal hypothesis on that because I don’t know the exact answer that a) we don’t drink the breast milk of our own species because we have access to things like goats and cows and camels and I don’t know whatever else can be milked as the line goes from the movie with Ben Stiller and Robert De Nero: I’m a Cat, Could you Milk Me Focker? You can milk if it has nipples, right?  So we’ve got access to the breast milk of other animals or we are smart enough to access that because let’s face it, mothers and mother’s breast milk that is something that would best be reserved for the growing baby population of our species.  And if all of us adults start drinking breast milk of our own species, we would probably risk babies not having enough.

Rachel:  Right.  I see.

Ben:  My personal hypothesis.

Rachel:  If there was a way for babies to have enough though, it would be better obviously to drink our own?  ‘Cause it’s made for humans not for…

Ben:  Yeah, and if you look at things that have nutrient-dense profile similar to breast milk like spirulina or liver or eggs, or any of these things that are high in fat-soluble vitamins, we certainly have access to things that will be a little bit of a parallel to breast milk in nature that we can take in, but I wouldn’t be surprised if someone at some point comes up with the way to do like breast milk from a lab or all the things that breast milk, colostrum, and growth factors, and probiotics and everything else, and maybe it comes in a breast shaped bottle that you buy from the grocery store (laughs)…

Rachel:  And then Freud is like rolling over in his grave.

Ben:  And Freud is freakin’ rollin’ over in his grave, yup.

Cathy:  Hey Rachel and Ben, thanks so much for an awesome podcast.  I’m learning so much.  It’s so awesome.  Please keep it up.  Today, I have a question about COMT genetic mutation of which I have and I know that that means that you can have a hard time breaking down catecholamines.  And I definitely have major insomnia issues if I’m out late at night, I just cannot wind down and just feel that I have all these adrenalin and cortisol going on and it’s really difficult for me to ever fall asleep before I’m out too late or if I’m just too amped up in the evening.  So, I was just wondering if you had any advice on this for those of us with the COMT mutation and if there’s anything that we can do to help break down those catecholamines that will help us get more into our parasympathetic nervous system.  So, thanks so much.  Looking forward to your answer.

Ben:  So, Rachel, just to F with you.  What’s this question about?

Rachel:  This question is about the warrior vs. the worrier gene.

Ben:  The what vs. the what?

Rachel:  The warrior… I just to say it like an American.  Warrior versus ….  Wa…  No, they still sound the same (laughs).

Ben:  I love an Australian.  Cannot say warrior vs. worrier.  It’s just nuts.  You’re not able to do it.  Your tongue doesn’t move that way.

Rachel:  Uhh, it doesn’t.  No, any.

Ben:  Yeah.  This is really, really interesting.  It’s this idea, I won’t geek out too much on the COMT gene but what it comes down to is that we have this specific gene called the COMT.  It stands for Catechol-O-methyltransferase, COMT.  And all that is put in simple terms, it’s an enzyme and it degrade things like dopamine and epinephrine and norepinephrine, and depending on which version of that gene you carry, you’re aren’t gonna break down things like dopamine and epinephrine and norepinephrine quickly or they’re gonna hang around for a long period of time in your system.  And that’s gonna influence your behavior and your personality.

So, we have this warrior profile.  The warrior has lower amounts of COMT and what is that mean? It means they break down their dopamine less quickly and they have higher amounts of dopamine.  And when you have higher amounts of dopamine, you get more pleasure out of life, but interestingly you also get, a lot of people don’t realize this more misery out of life.  You have bigger highs and also bigger lows when you’re a warrior.

So, what are the positives of that?  Well, you get more pleasure out of life like I mentioned and they’ve done studies where they’ve shown that people who have what’s called the double A gene for COMT have twice the amount of positive emotions towards the pleasant event than people who have the double G version of that gene.  You tend to be more creative because the dopamine in the prefrontal cortex of your brain promotes cognitive stability, and makes you more resistant to distractions.  So warriors tend to be able to focus on and be more creative.  You tend to have a higher IQ with the higher dopamine levels, you tend to have better working memory.

And they’ve actually done test and they’ve done one test called Enbac test for people with this low amount of COMT, high amount of dopamine.  These warrior genes, they’ve better reading comprehension and better working memory, and even more plasticity of the brain going to old age.  A warrior also when they’re not under stress, this is important, a warrior does better with attention and processing of information under stress, but a worrier has better cognitive function when they’re not under stress.  So, when in stress-free scenario a warrior does quite well a.k.a. computer programming vs. operating a radio on a battlefield.

So a few other things, you tend to have better fine motor skills and these are all things that they’ve tested and you tend to be able to focus more when you realized that you’ve made an error and people who have the warrior gene even have a better ability to be able to aim a weapon interestingly like a gun or a bow.  What are the bad things? Well, you don’t handle stress as well as a worrier does because of that high, high amount of dopamine.  So it can work for you and against you.  You tend to be more impulsive, you tend to have a higher risk for depression and anxiety, and you tend to be more neurotic.  They’ve even shown that there are some other issues in terms of like increase cocaine dependence and nicotine dependence, and things that you’d expect when you have a higher dopaminergic response to certain chemicals.

And then they’ve also found that there are certain medical conditions associated with having this warrior gene.  Primarily high amounts of ADHD and ADD, high amounts of like fibromyalgia which is like you know, ghost muscle pains and sensitivity to heat and pressure and things like that.  So, if you have these particular low COMT, high dopamine, there are some things that you can do if you have this warrior gene which should be what Cathy has.  It’s hard time breaking down catecholamines, insomnia issues, etc.

Some of the things that you can do:  first of all, you can ensure that you have adequate amounts of B vitamins like B6 and B12 and folate, and what’s called betaine and the reason for that is because high amounts of these B vitamin support the formation of something called Adenosyl methionine, and that prevents or at least partially inhibits this COMT activity and can assist with the dopamine break down a little bit more readily.  So, that’s one thing.  It’s getting a really good vitamin B complex even just a multivitamin you like.  I like the Thorne multivitamin because it has a lot of what’s called methyl tetrahydrofolate in it which is like a very bio-absorbable form of vitamin B.

Another one that seems to help with this is magnesium.  High amounts of magnesium citrate which is another co-factor for some of the enzymes that can help to breakdown dopamine when dopamine is high, that will be another one to make sure that you are including your diet an adequate magnesium.

Rachel:  Is that also in the Thorne multi?

Ben:  No.  That would be something that you could take like a natural calm magnesium or you could even use topical magnesium and rub it on your tummy.  That’s a perfect place to absorb topical magnesium interestingly, is the stomach where high amount of blood vessels and that’s where I put topical magnesium a lot of the time.  Be very careful with alcohol consumption because alcohol can cause a rapid release of dopamine especially in limbic areas of the brain that can not only increase your vulnerability to alcohol dependence but can also increase the instance of things like insomnia, et cetera.

You would want to avoid stimulants, any type of stimulants including caffeine honestly can cause a high, high amount of this dopaminergic activity and so you may want to consider using non-caffeinated beverages.  White teas, things like that as oppose to coffee.

Rachel:  What if you have the COMT mutation and you’re a fast caffeine metabolizer?  Does that even itself out?

Ben:  No.  I’d still be careful.  You’re still gonna have… like what’s you’re thinking but… antioxidants.  So, antioxidants are gonna be important because those prevent the oxidation of all these dopamine that you have hanging around and that can be pro-carcinogenic in high amounts in oxidized dopamine.  So, what you would want to do for example, like I mentioned that Thorne multivitamin, that’s got actually some really good antioxidants in it like vitamin C and vitamin E, and some of the things that can help out with this high amount of dopamine and prevent the actual oxidation of that dopamine.

There’s something called diindolylmethane, you’ll gonna find that in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, et cetera, you can also purchase it as a supplement called DIM and the reason for that is because if you have high estrogens, estrogens can actually inhibit COMT, and cause more of these dopamine to be hanging around in the bloodstream.  So, preventing excess estrogens both from your personal care products, phytoestrogens from plastics, things like that, but also considering use of this DIM or this diindolylmethane or things like broccoli and cauliflower, and things high in diindolylmethane can also help out quite a bit.  And I’ll list some of these recommendations in the show notes for you.

There’s also of course the worrier gene which is everything that I just said, the opposite of that, right, like really good under high stress scenarios, low amounts of dopamine, lower amounts of pleasure out of life, when you have this worrier gene.  In many cases, better performance under pressure, better performance under stress, but worse executive function sometimes worse fine motor skills, this is the classic meathead fighter, no offense, Navy Seal type of approach, and these people just don’t produce as much dopamine, and so there are things that you can take into consideration for this.  The biggest would be you’d want to get dopamine into your system.

There’s a lot of different ways to do that but if you happen to test and you can just use 23andme testing, you get this test out and figure it out.  For the worrier genes, probably the best thing you can do is there’s a supplement called Brain Food, and this is just a dopamine precursor made by Axon Lab and I’ve had the folks from them in the podcast before.  I’ll link to it in the show notes but it’s just a dopamine precursor that can help you.  It’s kinda cool if you take dopamine precursor prior to any pleasurable activity like sex or eating or anything, just like psilocybin mushrooms for example that makes everything a little brighter, more colorful.

Rachel:  What about if you have the COMT mutation and you take a dopamine precursor?  Is that like a quadruple pleasurable?

Ben:  Your head will explode.

Rachel: (laughs)

Ben:  I don’t think that would help out with Cathy’s insomnia but…

Rachel:  Don’t do that Cathy, it’s a bad idea.

Ben:  So, and I’ll put a link to the 23andme genetic testing if you wanna test this out as well as some other recommendations that I went into.  All of those over on the show notes at bengreenfieldfitness.com/357.  So, hopefully that helps you out.  You can also grab everything over there from the olive oil that I recommends to some of those things for maintaining muscle during exercise, to this new ketone drink article from the Department of Defense, the Casper Mattresses, the Calendar, and much more.

But of course, we would be doing everyone a great disservice if we didn’t give something away.  Right, Rachel?

Rachel:  Correct.

Ben and Rachel:  So…

Ben:  This is the part of the show were we take the top iTunes review of the week and we give you something cool.  We’re gonna send you a BPA-free water bottle, we’re gonna send you a tech t-shirt that make your muscles look great whether or not you’re breastfeeding.  And we’re going to send you a hat, a toque, a Ben Greenfield beanie, and all you need to do is this: if you hear your review read on the show, just email [email protected], that’s [email protected] and if you’re a 5-star, your unique review gets read.  You get that pack just be sure that when you email the said address, you include your t-shirt size, and your mailing address.  So that being said, we’ve got a review left by Bobrvl, and Bobrvl says…. You wanna take this one away, Rachel?

Rachel:  Yes.  It’s called “Great podcast” and it’s 5 stars.  “I am a big fan of Dave Asprey and when I was introduced to Ben’s podcast the first thing I thought was this is the athletic Dave Asprey.  I can relate to Ben because I’m a Crossfit Coach and competitor.  I’m always looking for ways to hack my performance and nutrition!  Thanks for the great info and entertainment, and I like the woo woo stuff you air!”

Ben: (chuckles) Dave Asprey for those of you who don’t know, he’s the Bulletproof guy.

Rachel:  Of course, yes!

Ben:  He’s the guy who invented Bulletproof coffee, the Bulletproof Exec, not necessarily known for being an uber athlete per se but I wouldn’t in no way want this to indicate that Dave is a spaz because I have seen him do headstands on vibration platforms before at conferences and he’s not an athletic tard but…

Rachel:  But he’s not gonna run a Spartan and then a Hurricane this weekend, does he?

Ben:  I don’t know.

Rachel:  Maybe!

Ben:  He could be there. So anyways though, I like Dave Asprey.  He’s a friend of mine.  I didn’t want you to read this review because I don’t liked Dave, but I think it’s a good review.  And I will take it.  I will now go by the title The Athletic Dave Asprey.

Rachel:  Who airs woo woo stuff.

Ben:  (laughs)  Yes, who likes woo woo stuff.  So, that being said, you can access all the show notes at bengreenfieldfitness.com/357.  You can watch Rachel and I doing a finesse sauna or whatever else we decide to do this weekend by going to bengreenfieldfitness.com/snapchat, and you can also win stuff over there.  Plenty more coming down the pipeline.  A fantastic interview this weekend, I believe with the, speaking of woo woo, man himself Dennis McKenna about LSD and Psilocybin, Ayahuasca and all sort of interesting things.  So, that should be interesting, and in the meantime, thank you for listening, and Rachel…

Rachel:  Yes, Ben…

Ben:  Enjoy the rest of your day Pirate Patronaut!

You’ve been listening to the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.  Go to bengreenfieldfitness.com for even more cutting edge fitness and performance advice.



August 3, 2016 Podcast: 357:  The Great Olive Oil Hoax, Warrior vs. Worrier Gene, Maintaining Muscle During Endurance Exercise, The Ultimate Guide To Napping & More.

NEW! Click here for the official BenGreenfieldFitness calendar of events.

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August 6, 2016: Join Ben for the Portland Spartan Sprint and 4 hr Hurricane Heat. Click here to sign up!

August 11-13, 2016: Ben is speaking at the Ancestral Health Symposium (AHS) in Boulder, Colorado. AHS is a historic three-day event created to unite the ancestral health movement and to foster collaboration among scientists, health professionals, and laypersons who study and communicate about health from an evolutionary perspective to develop solutions to our health challenges. Click here to learn more or to register now.

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Listener Q&A:

As compiled, deciphered, edited and sometimes read by Rachel Browne, the Podcast Sidekick.

The Ultimate Guide To Napping

Grant says: He recently saw your Snapchat story on napping. You said you naturally wake up after a 20-30 minutes daily nap and its part of your ritual. He’s curious how your body naturally goes 20-40 minutes and wakes up by itself without an alarm? What does it mean if you nap longer, like 2-4 hours?

In my response, I recommend:
Supermemo napping article
Withing Aura
Sleepstream (use Powernap function)
Lavender essential oil
SR1 Deltasleeper
Masimo pulse oximeter

How Much Coffee Can You Drink If You’re Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

Dalice says: She loves the podcast! After the recent podcast with Dr. Chopra, she has a question about coffee while breastfeeding. The studies showed that coffee consumption had little impact on the child when pregnant, is this still the case when breastfeeding? She has a 4.5 month old daughter and she wants to know if she can safely drink caffeinated coffee while breastfeeding.

In my response, I recommend:

How To Maintain Muscle During Long Endurance Exercise

Aleksi says: He loves the podcast and he’s been listening for many years. His question regards hiking. He’s going to Norway for a week-long hiking trip and he’s wondering how he can keep himself healthy and not lose too much muscle during the trip, with the least amount of weight to carry? And would that change if he were to hike a 2000m Appalachian trail instead of a week-long hike?

In my response, I recommend:
Algae article
Exogenous ketone + C8 & my article “How To Get Into Ketosis: The Ultimate Guide”
BPC-157 & SARMS like LGD-4033
Broken Skull Challenge

Warrior vs. Worrier Gene

Cathy says: She loves the podcast. She has a question about the COMT mutation, which she has. She knows it means you can have a hard time breaking down catecholamines. She has major insomnia issues, if she’s out late at night she just can’t wind down, she feels like she has adrenaline and cortisol issues going on, and its really difficult for her to fall asleep. She’s wondering if you have any advice for people with the COMT mutation and if there’s anything they can do to help breakdown the catecholamines that would help her get more into her parasympathetic nervous system?

In my response, I recommend:
Thorne multivitamin
Magnesium lotion
For Worrier: Brain Food

Read more https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2016/08/357-great-olive-oil-hoax-warrior-vs-worrier-gene-maintaining-muscle-endurance-exercise-ultimate-guide-napping/

















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