Episode #438 – Full Transcript

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From podcast: https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/podcast/qa-438/

[00:00:00] Introduction

[00:02:25] Ceremonial-Grade Cacao

[00:06:08] Travel Hacks

[00:12:18] FDA Isn't a Fan Of “Healthy” Baby Formula (Check Out Serenity Baby Foods, too!)

[00:19:22] Two Supplements That Your Kids Would Likely Benefit From 

[00:23:14] The Benefits of Microdosing with Alcohol and How to Microdose with Alcohol For A Better Brain & A Longer Life (& 3 Quick Hacks To Make Alcohol Healthier)

[00:31:15] High doses of anti-inflammatory drugs compromise muscle strength and hypertrophic adaptations to resistance training in young adults

[00:35:04] Cooling During Exercise Enhances Performances, 

[00:43:41] Mental Fatigue from Smartphone Use Prior To Resistance Training.

[00:48:44] The Latest Study on The Effects of Eating a Strict Carnivore Diet

[00:51:31] BOTH lower and higher amounts of total sleep time are associated with reduced cognitive performance in older individuals

[00:55:53] Transformation Challenge 2022

[00:57:43] Podcast Sponsors

[01:02:31] Q&A: Does Cold Therapy Increase Testosterone Levels?

[01:06:06] Ben's Thoughts on The Covid Vaccine & Vaccine Detox

[01:12:48] What Are Some Contraindications of The Carnivore Diet for Females?

[01:18:48] Featured Review

[01:21:16] Legal Disclaimer

Ben:  In this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast: is a carnivore diet bad for you? How to build more muscle with cold, the best baby food, microdosing with alcohol, and much, much more.

Health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking, and much more. My name is Ben Greenfield. Welcome to the show.

Jay, dude, it's been a while.

Jay:  Hey, man. Yeah, it has been a while. I feel like you pissed a bunch of people off last time because we didn't —

Ben:  What?

Jay:  No, it was actually–it wasn't you. I think it was also too the Clubhouse feed wasn't working. It was down for everybody. And, there it was, completely melted.

Ben:  Oh, yeah, Clubhouse broke. I don't even know if people like it that we're using Clubhouse, but there's a whole bunch of people in the room right now. And for people who are tuning in to this episode and aren't familiar with these Q&As, Jay and I always pop in and we record the latest news flashes and answer questions. But, we got on this stick a few months ago of just doing it live on Clubhouse. I don't even know the status of Clubhouse if it's still a respected social media platform or a thing of the past or what. But, it is fun to do it with a live audience, just because you have pressure, you can't take pee breaks, you can't fart, you can't say anything inaccurate or you get called out.

Jay:  You can.

Ben:  Well, it depends. It can be the silent deadly variety. But, later on in this show, we're going to open it up to any of you who happen to be live on Clubhouse right now. And, we will answer all of your burning questions.

And, the other thing that we do on this show is, of course, the news flashes. And then, also, if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com, if you've subscribed to the newsletter or you follow me on social media or anything like that, we always push out on social media the time that we do these shows, even though it's usually couple of Wednesdays during the month around 10:30 a.m. because neither of us like to get up early and work, nor do we like to work late into the wee hours.

Jay:  No way.

Ben:  So, we choose a same time. And so, that's how these things work. And, gosh, we usually just start off talking about anything we happen to be interested in at the moment. Jay, I'm into something cool now, a new kick of mine.

Jay:  Something novel?

Ben:  Ceremonial-grade cacao. I've been really getting into it.

Jay:  Ceremonial?

Ben:  I've been doing a cup —

Jay:  What ceremony are we–or, what are we celebrating here?

Ben:  I don't know. I can't even say that I can give a proper definition of ceremonial-grade cacao. Though, from what I understand, it is heirloom cacao, meaning it hasn't been super genetically modified. It's the older unadulterated variety of cacao, higher in some of the dopaminergic compounds and blood flow precursors, like the methylxanthines, which are stimulants that are produced by the cacao plant, and then theobromine, which is that compound that naturally lowers blood pressure but also acts as a stimulant similar to caffeine. But, it has this real good feel-good effect. It's dopaminergic. And, of course, cacao is really rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds as well.

But, somebody reached out to me on Instagram. Shout-out to the–I think it is called the Cacao Laboratory. And, I'll put this out on my Weekly Roundup at some point because we recorded, my family and I, this 45-minute-long cacao sipping ceremony that we did with Florencia, the nice gal from over there. And, it, to me, was an excuse to drink super-duper expensive hot chocolate.

Jay:  Yeah, it's Christmas time.

Ben:  But, it actually–yeah, it has this really, really great feel-good energizing effect. And, I've been just throwing down a cup, frankly because chocolate still has calories, and even though I like that there's this drink I use sometimes and have been using for the past couple of years, called MiCacao, which is dried cacao shells and nibs that's calorie-free and it's morning drinking chocolate, this cacao that you use for cacao ceremony, you get ceremonial-grade dark cacao bars. And then, you chop them up and you pour hot water over them. And you can blend it if you want, or you can just use a whisk and stir the cacao into the hot water. And then, you drink it.

And so, obviously, because you're using a cacao bar, and typically, a third to a half of the cacao bar, you've still got 200, 300 calories in a cup. So, I typically don't drink it first thing in the morning. I'll usually drink it later on in the afternoon or pre-workout for a little bit of a pre-workout kick. But, it's cool. Maybe, it's because it's Christmas time and cacao has that nice Christmasy, Santa Clausy association, or maybe it's just because I'm coming up with a good excuse to have more chocolate.

Jay:  Probably.

Ben:  But, I'm into ceremonial-grade cacao now. I'm one of those cool people.

Jay:  I feel like you just need to go get some really cool marshmallows made out of gelatin and then throw in some peppermint oil, maybe a little bit of crushed candy cane up.

Ben:  That's a good idea.

Jay:  Well, just peppermint oil and some marshmallows.

Ben:  I do have a giant bag of vegan marshmallows up in my pantry.  I don't know what makes a marshmallow vegan because I was unaware up until the point that somebody gave me a bag of vegan marshmallows last week that marshmallows actually involved the killing of animals.

Jay:  Is there a gelatin in marshmallow?

Ben:  I don't know.

Jay:  Probably.

Ben:  But, I'm sure true ceremonial cacao enthusiasts would just withdraw and shock that I would do such a thing as bastardize my ceremonial-grade cacao with marshmallows. But, that's a good idea.

Jay:  It's like drinking a really expensive wine out of a beer mug or something.

Ben:  That's a good idea, though. And, I like the idea of peppermint oil, too. I might just do that maybe tonight or tomorrow night or on Christmas Day and see how it feels. How about you? You been up to anything new lately?

Jay:  Yeah, dude. Well, to shamelessly plug my new company, health technology company, Hanu Health. We've been running around like crazy, which means that we're moving and we're building and we're growing, which means for me I've been doing a ton of travel. And, I've had to remember how to hack travel again, because I don't know for you, Ben, if the last two years has been mainly at home and not as much on planes and in airports. So, for me, it's like been re-educating myself on all of that just because I've been going a lot from West to East, East to West, out in San Diego back to South Carolina. And so, it's just been an absolute kill of fatigue and all these things. So, for me, it's been a lot of re-education and then just utilizing movement and light and food as the main zeitgebers or resetters. And so, that's been fun to get back into, but it's funny because I've been traveling a lot for the last six months, and now I'm just sick of it. And then, I'm like I want to just stay back at home again. So, for the next three weeks, I'm at home. So, that's pretty nice.

Ben:  Well, there's all those hacks out there, like trying to get outside barefoot at some point two hours after you arrive at your destination or using intranasal glutathione spray to protect your immune system before you're getting onto an airplane or doing your stretching exercises at the back of the airplane and being that annoying person blocking the pathway to the bathroom. But, if you could name the top thing that you would say has been a game-changer for you for travel or something unique you could share with folks, what's something you're doing when you travel to keep yourself put together?

Jay:  One of the greatest things for me is eating at the customary time of the time zone that I'm in. So, for instance, if I leave here on the East Coast and I know I'm going to gain three hours, let's say I leave at 6:00 a.m. here and I arrive at, let's say, 10:00 a.m. there, it's 1:00 my time. And so, for me, I'm freaking hungry. I'm ready to go.

Ben:  Yeah, lunchtime.

Jay:  Exactly. So, for me, though, I'm trying to delay my meals in order to reset the clock, the circadian clock from the food that I intake. And so, I'll eat again around 12:00, 12:30. And, it can be really difficult initially, but I found that to be super helpful. And then, the other thing is just prioritizing and optimizing sleep. And, I know that sounds really just, of course, though, it's ridiculously easy.

Ben:  Boring.

Jay:  Yeah, boring. But, that is the primary thing. And, for most people who are very familiar with travel, whether it's domestic cross-country travel or internationally, it's so much easier going West to East. I'm sorry, East to West. West to East is the tough one. Always coming back home for me is tough. And so, that's where I find the biggest struggles. But, thus far, I'm adjusting pretty well to the travel game again. I try to limit it if I can because I'm not a huge fan every once in a while. Cool, but not all the time.

Ben:  I'm a fan of that delaying mealtime until it's the appropriate mealtime at whatever destination that you're going to. But, I do cheats because there's a compound that can modulate the inflammatory pathways that inevitably get ramped up when you're traveling and you're exposed to all the dirty electricity in airports and flying 40,000 feet above the earth, so you're not getting the grounding and the earthing effect and the stress from travel and the circadian disruption from travel.

So, I, a lot of times, will throw back a shot of these ketone esters before I go flight, or when I get to where I'm going. And, I can go six to eight hours easily without eating with those. And, there's a whole bunch of good ones out there now. Probably, my top three, I'm not super-duper brand loyal with these things, but three companies make amazing ketone esters now that just freaking work. HVMN has one. They've got this new one that's a version of a 1, 3-butanediol that's just crashing your appetite.

Jay:  They just sent that to me.

Ben:  Oh, my gosh. That stuff's so good.

Jay:  It's really good.

Ben:  And then, a company called Oxford has a good one. And then, KetoneAid. All three of those companies you can't go wrong. Their ketone esters just work. You need one shot of them and you do it right before you get on your flight or when you board your plane or maybe when you get to where you're going if it's going to be a few hours until you eat. And, again, it kills two birds with one stone because it crushes your appetite but it also manages a lot of the inflammation that occurs when you travel. I'm a huge fan of those. I always toss up a bottle of those in my airplane bag, typically. It's those. I got some electrolytes, NAD. And, that's my go-to travel Ziploc baggies: ketone esters, magnesium/electrolytes and NAD. And, I always feel better with those three supplements when I travel.

Jay:  The ketone esters have been huge for me in travel. So, I've been doing that as well. And, the other thing that I've really enjoyed that I'll do during the flight, I'll actually drink it while I'm flying, is molecular hydrogen. And, I found that to be extremely replenishing. It's similar to what you were talking about in regards to magnesium and electrolytes, basically harnessing a lot of that value.

Ben:  That's funny. You should bring that up literally 10 minutes ago. Tyler Lebaron, who's one of the top molecular hydrogen researchers in the world, he texted me two new studies on molecular hydrogen that just came out: one showing the benefits of drinking hydrogen-enriched water for cognitive performance, impressive results. Another one on controlling the inflammation from TBI and concussion. Both are pretty impressive studies published in the Journal of Integrative Neuroscience. So, throw in a few hydrogen tablets in the mix isn't a bad idea as well. And, I'll probably tweet out those studies soon. So, people can take a look at them. But, speaking of which, we should jump into today's news flashes because we got a whole bunch of them since it's been a little while since we recorded.

Jay:  Yeah, let's do it, man.

Ben:  Alright, let's do it.

Ben:  Alright. So, this first piece might seem like it's only relevant to those of you with small humans, a.k.a. babies, hanging around the house. But, I think it's interesting nonetheless. And, even though I don't have babies, I like to keep my finger on the pulse of nutrition from the age of when you pop out the vagina all the way up till death. And, this story caught my attention. It was in Fortune Magazine. And, it was about how the FDA basically tried to shut down the marketing and the claims behind this infant formula company called Bobbie. And, what Bobbie was doing was they were trying to develop what they called a more European-esque baby formula that would be available in the U.S. because apparently, parents who buy from Europe prefer baby formula that's more lactose and coconut oil and grass-fed dairy formulas compared to the palm oil and the corn syrup and the conventional dairy that you find in a lot of infant formulas in the U.S.. And, the FDA started to heavily restrict them to the point where they were starting to shut down the profitability of this baby company called Bobbie.

And so, I looked into it just because I think it's sad that we don't have access to better baby formulas that are more simulative of breast milk here in the U.S. And, this is probably a topic near and dear to my heart just because when my sons were born 13 years ago my wife started an organic baby foods company very briefly just for a year.

Jay:  I didn't realized it.

Ben:  Her and my sister-in-law, they had a local commercial kitchen. And, they had all these organic fruits and vegetables that they were blending up with different oils and then flash-freezing. And, my kids, of course, got raised on that baby food, which was great for them. But, they never really took it big time. They were busy mommies and it never really took off.

But, since then, I've always been interested in how can we fuel young humans to be healthier. So, for example, one company that I've really been a fan of for a while is this company called Serenity Baby Foods. And, Serenity Baby Foods is a baby foods company. It's almost like a paleo approach to infant formulas, or not really formulas, but more actual baby food, even though they actually have an infant formula now that they call their toddler formula which is made from A2 milk which is the form of milk with the protein in it that tends to be less allergenic and cause less immune issues in kids. And, it's basically a bunch of grass-fed organic A2 whole milk and prebiotics, like a human oligosaccharides and fructooligosaccharides. They had a bunch of DHA into it for the kids' brain. I actually have some that I keep next to my NutriBullet and I literally toss a couple of scoops of that in my smoothie when I'm not doing the Kion Protein. I have a few alternatives I put in my smoothie. It's nice creamy tasty formula, even though it was developed for kids 12 to 36 months, it's a good toddler formula.

But then, they also do baby food. And, their baby foods are really good. They have one that's wild-caught salmon with organic butternut squash and beets. They have another one that's like a bunch of different carrots mixed with these different oils that contain omega-3s and 6s and 7s and 9s, really well-formulated baby foods. But, I thought, what the heck? I'll go look at this Bobbie company and see what they're doing and see why the FDA would want to shut them down.

And, I got to be honest. They sorted that a decent job, they put DHA in their baby food, which is fantastic for kids' brain. And, they've got some natural lactose and whey in there and some pasture-raised dairy. But then, I got my hands on the ingredient profile. And, frankly, I'm that depressed that the FDA is restricting them because basically, it's non-fat milk. And, non-fat milk is not what a kid should be drinking. Kids should be drinking full-fat milk. And then, they have a bunch of safflower and sunflower and soybean oil in there.

Jay:  Oh, man.

Ben:  So, a bunch of vegetable oils. It's not palm oil or canola oil, but they've got a bunch of traditionally rancid or heavily processed oils in there. And then, some stuff is okay, like organic whey protein concentrate and organic coconut oil, the host of different preservatives I wasn't a huge fan of. I'd give them a 7 on a 1 to 10 scale in terms of the ingredient profile for their baby formula. But, it's literally a list mile-long of all of the stuff in there. And then, I look at the ingredient list of something like this Serenity Baby Foods stuff. I could read it to you right now. I wrote it down here. The Bobbie formula is lactose non-fat milk, safflower oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, whey protein, coconut oil, soy lecithin, calcium phosphate, potassium phosphate, sodium chloride, calcium carbonate, zinc, ascorbyl palmitate, just a ton of stuff, some good, some bad.

Jay:  Sounds conventional.

Ben:  But then, the Serenity Baby Foods, did you look at the list on that? The one I was talking about the salmon, here's the list. Organic butternut squash, wild-caught salmon, organic beet, water, and organic olive oil.

Jay:  That's five ingredients.

Ben:  Yeah. And so, anytime I see a not quite a Frankenfood list of substances but a pretty hefty list of substances compared to just a pure clean plain Jane list, I'll typically go for the latter. But, the long story short is that I think it's sad that the FDA is limiting the supply chain and the ability to market for companies like Bobbie who are trying to do a good job with an infant formula that's at least a pretty good alternative to a lot of the Frankenfuels that are out there. Again, as we've established, not the best. But, it is interesting. I'll link to the article. But, the long story short is, parents out there–I'm knee-deep in the process of writing a parenting book right now. So, a lot of this is near and dear to my heart. Make sure you look at labels and go with companies like Bobbie or like Serenity Baby Foods. And, I think it's just sad that the FDA is taking action against companies like this because honestly, we need more healthy infant formulas out there.

Jay:  Indeed. And, it's interesting to watch what gets regulated and what doesn't and for what reasons. And, when I was reviewing the article and reading through it just now, and correct me if I'm wrong, it's basically like they're saying that this company is targeting or saying that they're an infant formula when indeed the FDA just doesn't classify them as an infant formula.

Ben:  Basically. It's dumb.

Jay:  Titles, semantics.

Ben:  Related to that, there was an interesting study that came out on supplements. My kids take some supplements. They take glutathione because they've both done genetic testing with the DNA company. And, I think that's smart for kids. You can still keep the data somewhat private, but it turns out my kids have the gene that limit their ability to be able to harness vitamin D from sunlight. So, I prioritize making sure that they get adequate vitamin D intake. They also have the gene that limits their ability to produce adequate amounts of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which is a miracle grow for the brain. So, they use a little bit of lion's mane on their hefty or mental days or days where they've got a lot of academic studies, they do a little bit of lion's mane extract.

But, this recent study looked at the effects of vitamin D and magnesium supplementation on the mental health status, in this case, of attention deficit hyperactive children. But, you can paint with a broad brush and extend some of the beneficial effects on behavioral function and mental health of children with these two supplements to kids in general. And, they did find a pretty significant effect, positive effect, on mental health of children with vitamin D and magnesium supplementation. In this case, it was a pretty large amount. They were getting about 50,000 IU a week of vitamin D.

Jay:  Wow, that's a lot.

Ben:  And, about 6 milligrams per kilogram, which isn't a huge amount, 6 milligrams per kilogram a day of a guy my size is 400, 500 milligrams of magnesium, which is a pretty standard dosage. But, it turns out that for kids, even if you haven't had your kids genetically tested and you're not dialing stuff in super specifically, it looks like for mental health and mental performance and overall cognitive health in children, that making sure you prioritize other via dietary sources or even a little bit of supplementations that based on this latest study, vitamin D and magnesium supplementation for children is not only healthy and safe but it's also a good little hack for cognitive performance, and especially if you have kids who are showing ADHD symptoms, which in my opinion is really just the definition of a child in general, and especially a boy in general. I think a lot of boys who are diagnosed with ADD and ADHD should instead be diagnosed as active healthy humans, active healthy small humans with penises. Anyways, though.

Jay:  You got to throw in the with penises.

Ben:  Exactly, just because boys tend to be a little more hyperactive than girls generally, painting with a broad brush. I have boys. And, they just are. But, anyways, regardless of whether or not your boys or girls have ADD or ADHD or hyperactivity type of issues, I think that vitamin D and magnesium are two things that you should make sure they're getting enough of, whether via dietary sources or, in this case, it appears to be safe to actually supplement with vitamin D and magnesium for kids. And, you do that, you combine it with some healthy baby foods like that, and I think it's a pretty good one-two combo.

Jay:  Yeah, this is always an important one. One of the biggest things for us, we have two boys as well, and especially during the summertime when they can get vast amounts of vitamin D, it's like allow them to exert the energy that they do have. We call it ADHD. We call it just normal behavior. We place all these labels, unfortunately, on things. But, I see it a lot of times with my boys. It's just normal energy and behavior that need to get out and they need to exercise. Get them outside in the sun. Allow them to run around and play, lift and throw things, do whatever they want in order to get sun and get activity. It's a great thing. But, I think that when we get to this time of the year when there is the potential need for supplementation because of the lack of vitamin D, it seems like that could be potentially a good route, especially for those who have just high-strung little ones.

Ben:  Yeah, supplementation for adults, though. Not a recent study but one that was brought to my attention as I was coming up in the holiday season and working on an article on healthy cocktails and modulating the effects of excess drinking and some things that would help out with hangovers, I came across a study. It was actually published back in 2002. But, it was a good reminder for me that I think a lot of people will be happy to hear about this time of year. It evaluated the effects of moderate alcohol consumption on–

Jay:  Oh, moderate.

Ben:  –C-reactive protein and inflammatory marker and fibrinogen. And, in this study, they had men and women all healthy non-smoking moderate alcohol drinkers consume, in the case of the men, four glasses, four servings of alcohol, in this case, beer, and for women, three servings of beer. And, they compared that to a control group using non-alcoholic beer. My apologies to that control group because non-alcoholic beer, it's gotten a little bit better, but it still tastes like shit, in my opinion.

Jay:  It still sucks.

Ben:  I'm not a beer fan, anyways. But, anyways, they looked at plasma C-reactive protein and fibrinogen levels and they decreased by 35% for inflammatory C-reactive protein.

Jay:  That's nuts.

Ben:  And, by over 12% for fibrinogen, too, inflammatory markers in people who were engaged in moderate alcohol consumption. I've written before about the value of so-called alcohol microdosing. They've shown that higher doses of alcohol, of course, can cause alcohol-induced dementia. It can cause brain shrinkage similar to excess THC consumption. It can cause impaired focus and memory because it affects blood flow to the prefrontal cortex, which affects your rational thinking and your short-term memory. High doses of alcohol have been shown to cause pretty profound brain inflammation in mice, granted these are the equivalent of five to six drinks a day in human and also in humans and rodent models. Both have been shown to cause increased risk of stroke.

But then, when you look at moderate drinking, and in this case, we're talking about the equivalent of around one to three servings of alcohol a day, typically it's around two to three in men, one to two in women. So, this other study on beer I was talking about is actually a little bit higher than some other studies when we're talking about three in men and two in women. But, actually, that beer study–I'm sorry, it was four in men and three in women, four servings of alcohol in men, three servings of alcohol in women. And, most of the other studies I've seen are closer to two to three in men and one to two in women.

But, they found that people who consume that amount of alcohol are three times more likely than non-drinkers to live to the age of 85 or greater, a pretty significant protection against cognitive decline, in the case of red wine, a significant decrease in dementia in rodent models, and increase in what's called lymphatic drainage, especially during sleep, like getting rid of inflammatory waste in the brain, decreased risk of stroke in people who are drinking two to three drinks of alcohol a day, lowered inflammation, similar to other study that we talked about. And, of course, the relief of mental stress and even a normalization of the cortisol response.

Jay, I've personally always been a fan of having a nice glass of organic biodynamic wine at the end of the day. I drink the–what's it called? The Dry Farm Wine. I get a shipping of that Dry Farm Wine to my house every month. And, I haven't been drunk in, probably, it's been 12 or 13 years now since I've been drunk or since I've ever had more than three drinks in a night. And, yet, I drink nearly every day a small serving of alcohol. And, I'm more of a one to one-and-a-half drink guy. When I say glass of wine, I'm not doing the big goldfish bowl glasses. I'm just moderate serving of wine.

And, I think that despite the fact that in health circles people still say any alcohol at all is going to be bad for you, I really am convinced, just based on the research that I've seen. Because I pay attention to what the studies say. And, I think most guys, even though I'm at one to one-and-a-half servings of alcohol a day, I think most guys can justify two to three drinks a day, and women one to two drinks a day, at least, of really good organic biodynamic wine or let's say a really clean cocktail, like a gin or a vodka combined with, maybe, a little bit lemon juice or bitters or pomegranate juice or something like that.

I think the pros outweigh the cons over and over again. And, a lot of people don't like to hear that because like red meat, we're conditioned to associate it with lack of health just because we associate a lot of times the red meat thing with the football-watching, beer-drinking, McDonald's- frequenting consumer. And, in the case of alcohol, with the person who's, whatever, drinking Margarita mix or two or three or four every night. But, this idea of moderate drinking or microdosing with alcohol, I think it's just fine, honestly.

Jay:  There's a lot of super interesting information and research out there. Regarding this study, there's a couple of concerns that I would have that I'm just thinking more anecdotally about me personally. The first would be that the men were consuming four glasses of beer, which, for me four glasses just seems–I don't know if that's 4 pints of that or four 8-ounce glasses. I don't know what they consider a glass.

Ben:  Four glasses of beer would get me drunk. I could tell you that.

Jay:  I'm a big guy. I'm 6'5′, 215. And, even four glasses, that would be pretty–that just seems like I'd be pretty buzzed, or maybe even tipsy/drunk off that. And so, I couldn't see myself doing that much each night.

And, the other thing, too. And, I don't know if you've seen this, Ben, or experienced this as well. I would just be worried about the nervous system repair and recovery aspect, because if I drink it in the evening, especially that much, even if it was three glasses, let's tamper it down a little bit. I'm not this crazy to drink four, but if I drink three, then I would see some significant disruption in my sleep architecture, especially in the realm of deep sleep, increased heart rate, and then decreased HRV. And, those would be a little bit more concerning from a recovery standpoint, which is why I wouldn't drink that much.

But, I'm in more in line with you, one and a half glasses a night seems a little bit more fitting. I would just be concerned if people hear this and they're like, well, now I have the excuse of drinking four glasses of beer, four glasses of wine.

Ben:  Exactly. It's like the weight loss studies that sometimes will look just at how much weight you've lost but don't look at things like, whatever, fertility, endoconsistent thyroid hormone status, etc. This study and many other studies will look at just one to two health parameters, like in this case, CRP and fibrinogen, or in other cases, other inflammatory markers or stress levels or something like that. But, I would love to see a study where they're looking at lipids, they're looking at sleep, they're looking at inflammation, they're looking at the whole host of factors.

And, I suspect, as you've just alluded to, that what would come out of a study like that would be something closer to around one drinking women and one to two in men as being something reasonable as a daily alcohol intake. But, long story short is that I wouldn't kick yourself too hard for having a few drinks a night over the holidays is not going to destroy it. I think, sometimes, it just gets blown out of proportion.

Jay:  I agree.

Ben:  So, there you have it We just justified getting drunk over the holidays to all of our listeners. You're welcome.

Jay:  If you could get drunk on one drink, yes.

Ben:  That's right, for lightweights like us. But, I can tell you that, paradoxically, the use of anti-inflammatory drugs is something that you do need to be careful with. This is not a super new study. It's a couple of years old, but it crossed my desk last week. And, it was something that I just decided I should bring up on the podcast because I still see this even in the health and fitness sector, excuse me, as something that that pops up over and over again. And, it's this idea of the use of anti-inflammatory drugs. “I'm just going to pop an ibuprofen, I'm sore after my workout. Got a little headache, I'm going to take some Advil.” We've established many times in this podcast in the past the increase in gut permeability and the impact on kidney function and the increase in the risk of toxin load and sepsis and a whole host of other issues with the moderate frequent use of anti-inflammatory drugs, like non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, like ibuprofen or Advil, especially when we've got healthy alternatives, like curcuminoids and tumerosaccharides and other compounds out there. 

This one for athletes showed that high doses of anti-inflammatory drugs basically attenuated the adaptive response to resistance training. Meaning, if you are lifting weights to maximize muscle growth or muscle strength and you're getting sore or you're taking an anti-inflammatory drugs for some other reason, they really hold you back. They limit gene and protein expression of muscle growth regulators. We already know they do damage to the gut. And, even if you're not concerned about that or you've got an iron gut, you think your gut can take it, it just shows and has been shown over and over again, ibuprofen, Advil, etc., freaking significantly impairs skeletal muscle adaptations to exercise.

And, I still see so many people. I was at somebody's house. I'm not going to say their name. But, they're somebody who's in the health. And, I went into their bathroom and I used their bathroom. There's one those big old Costco-size bottles of ibuprofen on the counter. And, it's just like [00:33:23]_____ all down the toilet, no. When there's so many healthy alternatives out there.

Again, curcumin. I interviewed that guy named David Perez from that company Nurish, N-U-R-I-S-H. I'll link to that one in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438.

The fact that people are still effing around with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs just shocks me. It's bad news bearers. And, especially, if you're into fitness, it's not doing you any favors at all.

Jay:  Yeah, it's no bueno. I remember back in the college bodybuilding days for me, we used to take ibuprofen after a really hard leg day or just a really hard push-pull day, just because we were being big babies, and then also said, we thought, “You know what? We can recover faster if we don't experience pain almost like we'll work through it.” And, it comes to with this study here and then all of the studies that we've seen on this in the past. It's like we were actually doing ourselves a huge disservice.

And then, so many people now, they take ibuprofen simply because it's palliative, like it's really helpful for them to get through the day if they don't have to think about or experience pain, instead of just learning to live with it and allow it to be there. And, I realized too, the chronic pain population or those who have chronic pain are probably screaming at me as they listen to this. I'm not really referring to you. I don't think this is great for you either. I think there are much better strategies that are just healthier in general. But, I think that we are so adverse to pain, literally adverse to pain, that for a lot of us we don't think twice before we pop in ibuprofen, which is unfortunate.

Ben:  And, anecdotal admittedly, but it's pretty rare that I don't talk to somebody who has incorporated cold showers or cold baths or cold soaks as a regular part of their routine who has not reported significant, not only increases in energy, increases in HRV, better sleep, better energy, but also lower levels of soreness and inflammation, and again a good segue into the next thing that I wanted to talk about. And, that's this idea that cooling enhances exercise performance.

I was at a conference a few weeks ago with the folks who were working with the Stanford cooling glove experiment researchers.

Jay:  With Dr. Craig Heller?

Ben:  Yeah, where they've developed this glove that enhances exercise performance when you circulate cold water around the hand because of these so-called, what are they called? The anastomosis type of vessels that are in the hands and the feet. And, you cool those. And, it does a good job–

Jay:  [00:36:06]_____.

Ben:  –yeah, cooling the rest of the body.

Recent study in the Journal of Medicine and Science and Sports actually backs up this fact that cooling during exercise enhances performance, decreases your rating of perceived exertion, increases your ability to be able to push yourself because it can limit hyperthermia, which would cause faster central and peripheral fatigue and impair physical performance.

But, this is interesting because it showed that the area cooled actually matters. So, for strength training or for anaerobic training where you're going really hard, it turns out that whole-body cooling is the best way to enhance exercise performance, where they're using something like one of these Cool Fat Burner type of vests that you can wear. Shout-out to CoolFatBurner.com. I think they have a big Christmas sale going on right now by the way, too.

Jay:  These things are sleek. 

Ben:  So, if you want one of these vests. I know you just wear them while you're exercising. It cools the whole body while you're exercising. Jumping in a cold bath or a cold tub pre-exercise or doing anything for whole-body cooling is best for enhancing exercise performance that's hard. And then, for aerobic exercise, it's actually these areas where you have these–how do you say them again, Jay, the arterio–

Jay:  The AV shunts?

Ben:  Yeah, AV shunts. But, it's the arteriovenous anastomoses, I think is what you actually call these vessels.

Jay:  That's right.

Ben:  That, if you cool them do a really good job cooling the rest of the body. And so, this would be an example of using a cooling glove or holding on to something cold or cooling your hands or your feet or even a cold fluid ingestion, like cold water and icy or slurry or even menthol-flavored beverage that's not even cold but has a menthol minty coolly taste to it. That's better for aerobic exercise or endurance performance.

So, it depends on the type of performance. If you do have to go on a long run, you could drink something really cold and then keep the face and the neck and the torso cold. And then, if you're looking for more of a strength training anaerobic effect, just do a full-body cold soak beforehand or wear some of this cooling garment during. And, it's a really significant magnitude of effect on exercise performance.

A guy named Brad Kearns wrote an article that I'll link to if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438. He wrote an article called the “Unfrozen Caveman Runner” where he talked about. And, he's a master's level sprinter. How he really got into prior to his workouts at the pre-workout ice bath, a lot of us are used to this concept of doing the ice bath after workout to decrease inflammation or decrease core temperature. But, doing it before–Anybody who's done this–I don't know if you ever done this, Jay, but if you like jumping to a super cold cold tub before you go workout, you can crush it, especially if it's a high-intensity sprint-based workout. You got to be careful if there's a lot of biomechanical complexity because if the joint is very cold, it can limit some of the nervous system recruitment. And so, if you're doing an overhead snatch and you're super cold, you have higher risk of throwing out a shoulder because you're moving the bar wrong, etc., but if you just prime yourself with something like a pre-cooling and then do a brief rewarming and then go into your all-out sprints.

The reason for that is a scientifically validated 200 to 300% increase in norepinephrine that lasts for an hour after cold exposure. So, in this case, it's not being cold. It's more of the neurotransmitter response to the cold. And so, it's a pretty cool hack. It's pre-workout to really allow yourself to push yourself a lot harder if you get cold right before the workout. And then, you can warm yourself up a little bit just to make sure you're warmed up. Then, go do the workout. And, all those neurotransmitters are going to be circulating in your system for an hour after you get cold. And, Brad wrote a big article about this on my website, again, that'll link to. But, this idea of using cold is really interesting.

And then, there was an article that I wrote way back in 2012 for LAVA Magazine. When I was racing in the Half-Ironman World Championships in Vegas, I did a story for that magazine where I wanted to see what would happen if, and in this case, the race was at 109 degrees Fahrenheit, how I would perform and how I would do in terms of comparison to my previous races in the heat if I used, well, what I had in that race was I was drinking ice-cold slushies during the race. I had the cooling sleeves, which was xylitol-infused cooling sleeves that you wear in your arm. I had a cooling hat with same thing, xylitol-infused cooling hat. And then, I had a cooling vest that I wore during the running portion of the event. And then, I also had these little cold frozen handheld palm coolers that you hold in each hand as you run.

And, I'll link to the article. It's still available online for free of at the LAVA Magazine website. I'll hunt it down and put it in the shownotes.

But, I literally was cool as a cucumber that entire race. And, granted, there's still issues with lactic acid and mental fatigue and physical fatigue, and just pushing yourself. But, the heat was not an issue. A lot of heat is hackable with these type of cold exposure strategies. And, this recent study shows that, not only is it hackable, but depending on what type of exercise you're going to do, anaerobic versus aerobic, the area that you cool can have an effect. So, again, long story short is for anaerobic hardcore strength type of stuff, getting as much of the body cold as possible. Then, going and crushing it is better. And then, if it's just for aerobic performance, literally, just drinking something super cold or cooling just the face or the neck or the torso has a significant effect.

Jay:  This is some of the most fascinating and, I would say, exciting research and research topic area that I've encountered over the past year. If you haven't listened to this, Ben, yet or your listeners haven't listened into this yet, there's a great podcast that was done with Dr. Craig Heller who is the guy who created the CoolMitt out of Stanford and is doing a lot of this research on Andrew Huberman's podcasts or on the Huberman Lab. and, it's so interesting. He's telling about these stories and these studies that they've done where they've looked at utilizing football players, both at Stanford and then professional football players, and having them just, during sets, place their hands in these CoolMitts or do these pre-workout soaks or pre-workout cold showers or cold immersions.

And, he was telling the story about this one football player who doubled his work volume in two to three days. So, he was doing, let's say, 40 dips in one set. And then, he would, naturally, as his set progressions, move forward. He would lose strength, as everybody would. And, it's not to say he didn't continue to lose strength. That set goes on with the CoolMitt. But, he started to double his work volume two to three days after using these mitts. So, it's an incredible line of research. People can check out the CoolMitt, C-O-O-L-M-I-T-T. It's not available to the public just yet, just for professional athletes and, I think, Olympic athletes. But, it's incredible technology that I think that once it is available to consumers, it's going to revolutionize the way that we do workouts. You're going to see everybody around the gym with their hands in these big old mittens.

Ben:  And, for now, you can just sprinkle little peppermint oil in your hands and rub them together, if you have any leftover from your house from the people drinking chocolate.

Jay:  Just don't rub your eyes.

Ben:  Yeah, don't rub your eyes.

Jay:  Exactly.

Ben:  Or your balls.

Jay:  Yeah, true.

Ben:  So, a few other things. I know we're getting a little long in the tooth on our news flashes, but I'll fly through just a few more for people that I think were interesting. Pretty darn good reason not to be dinking around with your phone before you go to the gym, like hefty use of social media, whether before you're working out or while you're at the gym, multiple studies now have piled up, including this latest one, about mental fatigue from smartphone use. We all know that it can be more difficult to, say, work out at the end of the day due to decision-making fatigue and the fact that just when you're mentally fatigued you have a harder time physically pushing yourself. Well, this latest study looked at compared to viewing a documentary prior to workout, the use of a smartphone social network app prior to workout, the smartphone social network app, and dinking around in your phone for 30 minutes led to much lower volume load during a strength training session and increased perception of mental fatigue.

And, when you pair that with a ton of other studies, including one that was done in swimmers showing a significant decrease in swimming performance, when people were doing social media prior to their swimming workout, the use of social media applications causing mental fatigue and impairing decision-making in boxers, another one that looked at the velocity of the bar with people who were engaged in social media prior to or during their workout in the weight room, dictates that if you are still one of those people who's sitting on the bench in between your sets on Instagram, on Facebook, on Twitter, on TikTok, whatever, it's just not a good idea.

I always, always have my phone in airplane mode. I always, if I have a workout that I got to go through, I always download it. And, I think I'd mentioned this on the podcast a few weeks ago. I have a pretty massive fitness app. I partnered up with this company called Ladder. And so, every week, I've got six weeks of programmed workouts, six workouts a week, cues and tips and movements from me, a whole chatroom based around the workouts. But, the fact is that the reason I like that app is it's got pocket control, meaning all of the cues that I give you as you're working out, everything I say to you, you could have your phone in your pocket the whole workout and not have to take it out and dink around with it.

And, anytime that you can do that and or have your phone in airplane mode–I'm not against having your smartphone in the gym. It's great for counting. It's great for timers. It's great for if you have your workout written out or using a fitness app to be able to reference which exercise you're supposed to do. But, specifically getting down to the root of the issue, social media prior to heading to the gym or while you're at the gym is basically going to make your workout less effective. Period. There's eight research studies now showing this.

So, I just want to bring that up to tell people freaking, be careful, if you know what I mean. If you're listening to us on Clubhouse right now and you're at the gym, think twice, unless you're just passively listening and not interacting. It's just one of those things that I would be remiss not to mention on the show just because I see people doing it so much. And, it's just one of those things that's going to really detract from your performance.

Jay:  Totally. And, this is something I see every single day in the gym. And, I've been guilty of it before too. I'm not going to sit here and lie and say I've never done that. I've done it plenty of times. But, I've really tried to change my behavior there because you'll just watch people. They'll get in a workload or work set. And then, they'll sit on their ass and they'll be on the phone for three to five minutes on social media. And, these studies are really indicating this is a huge detriment to them.

So, the thing that I've been trying to do I think I've mentioned on here on this podcast before and another podcast as well, is tip and trick that my buddy, Ben Pakulski, taught me, which is, number one, get up. Don't sit down during your rest. And then, also, just do some breathwork. Engage in that and breathwork and parasympathetic activity. It's so helpful for me. And, I kill two birds with one stone. Whereas, I'm just getting dumber the more I scan through social media.

So, I've really made it a habit now to put that aside. Really, I do have my phone on me because I've got my headphones in. I'm listening to a podcast or some music.

Ben:  Yeah, either for podcasts or audiobooks or music.

Jay:  Yeah, but not social media.

Ben:  I'm the same way. I don't rest in between sets. I'll either do mobility exercises. I'll bounce up and down on my feet. I'll do breathwork. But, I don't sit at the gym at all. And, you just get a much, much better workout that way. Even if you're recovering from a set of squats, there's no reason that you can't do a core exercise or an upper-body exercise in between. I just think too many people just sit around too much at the gym, frankly.

Jay:  Yup, dopamine nation, man, dopamine nation.

Ben:  That's right. A couple of other things, and then we'll take a few questions here. The first is a recent study on the carnivore diet. I'll be pretty brief on this one. They looked at the nutritional practices and health status of a large group of carnivore-diet consumers, over 2,000 people. They looked at gastrointestinal events, at muscular responses, at skin health and dermatology. They looked at lipids. They looked at glycated hemoglobin, blood glucose, use of diabetic medications, triglycerides, everything. Essentially, they found people consuming a carnivore diet actually had more health benefits and fewer adverse effects than people who were not consuming that, granted many people who are consuming any diet, whether it's vegan or carnivore or paleo or Weston A. Price or anything else, they're always going to be healthier just because they're more aware of what they're eating. And, typically, they're cutting out the standard crap that the average consumer is ingesting.

And, yet, this did show eating just meat isn't that big of a deal from a health standpoint, at least not short-term. I think these people were eating this diet for around six months or so. Granted this many studies was a survey-based study. This was not a well-controlled laboratory study. Who knows how much kale and quinoa these people were cheating on with their carnivore diet? But, regardless, they were reporting they're eating carnivore diet. They tested a bunch of stuff. And, they appeared to be just fine.

So, I'm one of those guys who has no issues at all. I think the average human could eat just meat, like a well-comprised nose-to-tail, bone broth, bone marrow, organ meats, red meat for the rest of their life and be just fine. My beef with the carnivore diet, ha-ha, is that it's just socially restrictive.

Jay:  That's such a good day.

Ben:  When grandma brings over her green bean casserole for Thanksgiving and you got to be the [BLEEP] who doesn't eat it because all I'm eating is turkey, grandma. Or, when you go to sushi, you can have a seaweed salad, whatever. But, long story short is this was the biggest study that I've seen to date on the carnivore diet in long-term adherence to the carnivore diet and health effects that arise from that. It appears to be a moot point. I still think people who are eating a carnivore diet who are just eating rib eye steaks from Costco for breakfast, lunch, and dinner are going to build up nutrition deficiencies over time versus people who are eating a more well-comprised nose-to-tail carnivore diet full of organic, wild-caught, pasture-raised, grass-fed, grass-finished meats and organ meats and bone broths and bone marrow and the like. But, ultimately, long story short, carnivore diet, not a big deal from a health standpoint.

Jay:  Yeah.

Ben:  And then, the last one was sleep duration. We all know that seven to nine hours is the recommended level of sleep for most people with anywhere from six to seven hours plus a nap or a siesta or meditation session also being another way to ensure that your sleep architecture is good. And, that's really my jam. I sleep six or seven hours a night, and then I do a 20 to 45-minute siesta right after lunch. And, that works just perfectly for me.

But, this latest study suggested that long sleep duration is just as bad as short sleep duration, especially for cognitive frailty and mental deficits. So, unless you are a professional athlete with a higher amount of neuromuscular recovery implications, sleeping or being in bed for more than nine hours a night seems to have just as many health risks as sleeping less than six hours a night, dictating the fact that more is not better. I think a lot of people are already aware of that. But, normal sleep duration, again, seven to nine hours a night, or six to seven hours a night plus a nap or meditation session or a siesta or one of these Yoga Nidra type of full-body scans where you're just laying there for 30 minutes totally relaxing yourself. That's pretty good. But, what you want to avoid is sleeping less than six hours or being in bed/sleeping longer than nine hours.

Latest study just came out showed particularly increased cognitive frailty. And, this was over 4,000 participants in this study. This wasn't a rinky-dinky nine healthy women in Cincinnati study. This was a big, big study, in this case, in China. And so, just be careful with sleeping too much. I think, sometimes, in the biohacking health, orthorexic dieting sector, that we just tend to sometimes think, the more I can sleep, the better. If I can sleep 12 hours a night, I'm going to really rock it, baby. Fact is you're going to waste a lot of your life, you're not doing yourself any favors in the health department, especially once you've exceed about nine hours, unless, and again unless, you're a professional athlete. If you're training three to four hours a day, you just need more neuromuscular recovery. You need more lymphatic drainage. You need more musculoskeletal recovery. You need more sleep time. But, unless you fall into that category, don't be sleeping like a pro athlete if you're not a pro athlete. Don't short yourself on sleep. But, anybody out there sleeping more than nine hours, you may want to check this yourself.

Jay:  Do I just sound completely pompous that I think or feel, I don't know what would be the better word here, that sleeping more than nine hours just seems an absolute waste of time? It just seems such a waste of time to me.

Ben:  It is venturing into the don't waste your life type of category. There's a reason. What's that saying that the most impactful people are tired people? It's something like that. But, if you look at all the world leaders and movers and shakers and inventors and entrepreneurs and people who are really making an impact in this world, they die and go to their gravestone a little bit tired with some bags under their eyes. And, honestly, I think that's okay. It's okay to short yourself on sleep if that allows you to make maximum impact with your life. I don't think you should be like the Navy SEAL who says “I'm going to sleep when I die.” Get up at the same time. I think some of us just protect and prioritize our sleep almost too much when in fact we might be able to create more and make greater impact, spend more time with our kids, learn a new musical instrument, etc. We just slept a little bit less.

And, again, we got to strike a balance. But, yes, I think a lot of times, podcasts about biohacking and health and sleep and exercise, etc., some people just get too worked up about the sleep component. Again, my sweet spot, six to seven hours a night. I go to bed about 9:30. I get up between 3:45 and 4:30 a.m. I get a wonderful four to five hours of working before half the world is awake. I've got half the workday in. I slip into the basement right after lunch and take a 20 to 45-minute siesta. I'm good to go. And, I'm far more productive with that versus sleeping from, whatever, 9:30 a.m. or 9:30 p.m. till 6:30 a.m. I always feel like I'm wasting my life and I'm always playing catch-up when I sleep that much.

Jay:  Agreed. It's not too dissimilar from my schedule.

Ben:  Alright, I got some epic news. I want to make sure that you are aware that I'm going to be opening up another round of the highly popular Transformation Challenge, just in time for this new year, 2022. So, the challenge is going to include all the nitty-gritty recovery, immune-boosting, cognitive-enhancing, connection-building tips, and actionable steps to take your body, mind, and spirit to a boundless level. All the same stuff we did last year, but even better.

The last time we ran this challenge, there were some pretty impressive results. We had some folks who lost 12 plus pounds of fat, gained 8 pounds of muscle, shed inches off their waist, and also connect better to their family, developed better relationships, maximized their spiritual health. And, people were sleeping better, better focus, better energy levels. It's crazy what happens when you holistically combine all this stuff together.

Now, to maximize results even more, this time around we're doing something new. We're adding exclusive access to my fitness program and platform, the app called Ladder where I've got six weeks of workouts for you to elevate that whole transformation process. So, it's going to be super fun. We have a whole bunch of nutty health-seeking go-getters ready to embark on this journey of self-discovery and human optimization. We're going to run it at six weeks, plus a bonus prep week, with a focus on setting the foundational stage to shift you into a state where you'll be ready for a deep-rooted lifestyle change.

This isn't a weight loss challenge. It's a full body, mind, and spirit transformation challenge. The doors close on January 2nd, alright, or whenever we reach 200 people, whichever ones happens first. So, you get in at BenGreenfieldCoaching.com/Challenge. That simple, BenGreenfieldCoaching.com/Challenge.

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Alright. Well, let's take a few questions. I know we've been going a little bit long already, but we'll do three questions. We'll keep our responses, maybe, not super-duper long in the tooth. We'll do a little Q&A here. Let's do it.

Alright, we got Harrison. Harrison, what's your question, man?

Harrison:  My question is you were talking before about the cold therapy before workouts. And, I'm wondering if you have seen this either with clients or in your research the testosterone increase before workouts with cold therapy. And, if so, do you agree or think that a shower or cold therapy, cold shower before a workout is enough to evoke that response?

Ben:  Alright, so the link between cold therapy and testosterone. We already know there's a link between cold therapy and sperm, and that icing one's balls, avoiding excess heat, hot tubs, etc., has a pretty significant effect on sperm morphology, positive effect on sperm morphology. But, they have done some studies on salivary testosterone levels, particularly as a response to a cold shower or a cold plunge, or a cold dip. One recent study actually looked at–it was a Swedish study. And, they looked at men who were doing a cold glacial water dip prior to exercise. And, they did see a significant boost in testosterone.

The folks from that Cool Fat Burner company that I talked about earlier, they've also had some internal studies where they've seen increases in salivary testosterone in response to cold exposure.

There was another pretty recent study that was published in the spring of this year where they looked at testosterone, they looked at cortisol, they looked at DHEA. And, they found that in men who were doing a sauna with cold versus just the sauna that the cold had a much bigger effect on endocrine function, particularly in testosterone. And, there's a lot of other smaller studies that have looked into and found cold to increase testosterone.

How long of an effect that is, whether it's just a quick acute effect or whether it's a long-term chronic effect is tough to say because most of these are looking at pretty immediate salivary response to cold. But, long story short is that I really do think there's something to this idea of cold and the positive impact on testosterone, endocrine function, and seemingly a significant increase in sperm count and fertility as well. So, I'm going to go thumbs-up on that. You got anything to add, Jay?

Jay:  Yeah. So, one of the interesting things that came out of the lab in Stanford from Dr. Craig Heller was looking at the effects of an increase in adrenaline and epinephrine and how that relates to testosterone. And, as we know from basic physiology, is that we see diminished testosterone with chronic enhancements of adrenal fatigue or chronic enhancements of adrenaline release. However, in the short term, what we found and what they found, I should say, we are not part of the group, is that, as people transiently or acutely increase adrenaline, that testosterone also will increase as well.

So, I think that there's an interplay between testosterone and adrenaline. And, I would think that that's probably the major modulator there. But, again, maybe more research needs to be done on that end.

Ben:  Awesome. Cool. Easy reply. Thanks. Good question, Harrison.

Alright, let's bring somebody else up.

Meg:  Good morning, afternoon, everyone. Thanks for doing this great room. I'm just wondering. I don't know if you're going to want to answer this or not, but what do you think–and it's not really to do with sports nutrition, but what do you think about the vaccine and its effects and what people can do to, not detox, but actually get some of the items out of your system? And, if you don't want to answer this, I totally get it because I'm in the health field, too. I do a radio show on iHeart Boston, Providence. And, I stay away from this subject myself because I don't want people to do what I do, but I'm just wondering your thoughts on that.

Ben:  Sure. I did a whole podcast with Dr. Matt Cook about this. And, I'll link to it in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438. But, we went over all of the things that he does to support any type of deleterious response to the vaccine with his patients. And, in particular, even though I have that whole document for free if you go to the shownotes of my interview with him, the main thing is that he uses is hydrotherapy, meaning alternating hot and cold applications to improve the circulation of blood and lymph via peripheral vasodilation and vasoconstriction, which allows for removal of waste products from tissues. And then, he uses a host of different supplementation, primarily mixed vitamin E tocopherols and tocotrienols.

Designs for Health has a good vitamin E product that mixes the tocopherols and the tocotrienols which can help with blood clot prevention and lowering blood viscosity and cell membrane protection. A ton of liposomal vitamin C. Vitamin A which actually upregulates the toll-like receptors in the GI tract, which can help to modulate the immune response. Vitamin D3, also to help both the innate and adaptive immune responses so you almost get a better response to the vaccine. Vitamin B5, which allows for better histamine clearance in people who have a little bit of a mass cell activation response to the vaccine. Something called pro-resolving mediators, which help to keep some of the accelerated inflammatory response that can cause a long-term side effect to the vaccine at bay. Some binders, particularly, activated charcoal and bentonite or zeolite clay, to help remove some of the chemical toxins and adjuvants that may be in the vaccines. He actually uses a homeopath called Thuja and one called Arnica, and primarily just does that for the arm pain and the body aches that you can get from the vaccine. A special type of mushroom called agarikon mushroom, which helps with what he called the broad-spectrum antiviral polypore, which apparently, again, improves the immune system response to the vaccine. Grapefruit seed extract to improve lead blood vessel wall and endothelial integrity. Higher dose melatonin to decrease the inflammasome response to the vaccine. Resveratrol to help stabilize the mass cell and the histamine response. Astragalus, which also helps with the inflammatory response. But, in people who are having a severe inflammatory response, apparently, you need to be careful because it may cause some issues with that. A few different adaptogens, primarily holy basil and rhodiola. And then, he uses colostrum to help to protect the gut and increase the production of immune-activating antigens in the gut. And then, NAD or NMN or NR as mitochondrial protectants, and IV glutathione for the same reason. And then, finally, he uses a whole range of different injectable peptides with probably the most notable for the immune system modulation being thymosin beta-4.

And, I know that sounded like a lot of stuff. But, that's all written down and that's all a free download in the podcast shownotes that I have with him. I'll just link to it if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438. But, I actually have Matt coming on another podcast in about a week because, since the podcast that he did with me, in which he was pretty bullish on the vaccine, he said about a week after that show he started getting people right and left coming into his clinic who were blind from the vaccine, people who were getting paralysis and all sorts of serious issues. So, we're having another discussion about a week. But, his clinic has pretty much blown up and become a clinic that was primarily treating COVID patients to a clinic that's primarily treating people with vaccination symptoms that are almost more problematic than COVID. So, we're going to have a pretty interesting discussion, I guarantee.

But, in the meantime, should you need to get the vaccine or should you have been vaccinated and be concerned about some of the side effects, I would definitely access that document. So, good question, Meg.

Meg:  That was awesome. That's so great. So, I'm going to definitely go and watch the show. And, you're preaching what I'm preaching. And, we just need to get the word out there. Isn't it funny how these cases where people have had injuries, they're not getting onto the news? And, it bothers me because I myself was forced to get the vaccine. And, when I say forced, there wasn't a gun held to my head, but the Department of Health in the State of Rhode Island told me I need to get both vaccines or I would have to present myself in front of the board and all this crazy stuff. And then, it also said at the end of that letter from the Department of Health, if you know anyone that is licensed in the State of Rhode Island who has not gotten the vaccine, please report them here.

So, I'm like, I do a radio show. I knew somebody was going to report me. And, I did get tachycardia after it. But, I want to thank you so much, Ben.

Ben:  No problem. I can say I'll probably get vaccinated but I'm waiting for Novavax or INOVIO. So, I would like to get vaccinated just to protect myself against any variants, and also to get rid of any of the problematic social restrictive issues. But, I'm waiting for one that I'm more comfortable with to actually get the jab, so to speak.

Well, let's take one more question. Alright, Sherin. Last question, make it a good one.

Sherin:  I myself am an autoimmune transformational specialist and do a bunch of fun stuff. And, I work with clients. And, a lot of women listen to your podcast. And, they come to me and they're like, “Hey, I was listening to Ben. And, I'm going to do the carnivore diet,” or they start intermittent fasting. And, what happens is their period, their cycle goes crazy. And, I just wanted you to touch a little bit on some of the contraindications of the carnivore diet for women, and if you've come across any, what your take is on how they affect female hormones, and what women can do to prepare if they do want to do a diet or they can better support their cycle?

Ben:  So, first of all, agnostic of the type of diet being consumed, many people who begin to diet also begin to fast or restrict calories. It's just the nature of being more aware of what you're eating and the timing of what you're eating. And, especially, in premenopausal women, there's a significant downregulation of a hormone called kisspeptin. I actually have some injectable kisspeptin in my refrigerator upstairs because it's so great for fertility and for testosterone.

And so, you can imagine that if that particular hormone were to decrease in women, what would happen? Well, we see a decrease in luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone. And, lo and behold, what's one way to significantly downregulate kisspeptin? Not eating for longer than 12 hours in premenopausal women.

And so, first of all, longer-term intermittent fast, longer than about 12 hours in premenopausal women, especially when frequently performed, is not a good idea. I'm a bigger fan of a 10 to 12 hour overnight fast for premenopausal women. And, because all those autophagy cellular cleanup longevity benefit effects don't kick in until after about 16 hours, then what you do is just a couple of times a month do a 24-hour dinner time to dinnertime fast. So, you're not frequently making a big dent in endocrine infertility function. But, just every once in a while, you're getting those autophagy benefits.

So, first of all, don't excessively fast. Second of all, decreased adequacy of carbohydrates can impair the conversion of T4 into T3. It can also increase cortisol and can impair endocrine function. And, because a carnivore diet, just by the nature of the diet, tends to be lower in carbohydrates, inclusion of things like berries and honey and healthy, and I would even say if you're willing to bastardize the carnivore diet and even do some safe starches like tubers, sweet potatoes, yams, purple potatoes, etc., most of the women who I help out with their diet, they're having minimum of 100 and typically close to 200 grams of carbohydrates a day, typically from sources like that, like berries and honey and tubers. And, even those who are eating carnivore diet are also doing that. And, that seems to really, really help out with the fertility part.

Now, the nice thing is if you do those things, you don't excessively fast, and you eat adequate carbohydrate, if you're eating a well-comprised nose-to-tail carnivore diet where you're getting bone marrow and bone broth and a ton of omega-3 fatty acids and even saturated fats and pregnenolone precursors for things like progesterone and DHEA, then what's going to happen is actually a pretty beautiful scenario. It's a little bit more like the Weston A. Price diet. If you Google the Weston A. Price diet and looked at the parameters of that diet, it's a bunch of full-fat dairy and fermented vegetables and butter and lard and pastured meats, a wonderful scenario for fertility and for overall endocrine function.

And, really, the carnivore diet is almost just a stripped-down version of that. It gets rid of some of the fermented vegetables and some of the spices, etc. And so, I have no issues with the carnivore diet as far as women are concerned. I would just say that for endocrine function in general, don't excessively fast. Make sure you're eating a properly comprised nose-to-tail version of it. And then, open yourself up to the idea of including honey and berries and tubers, and somewhere in the range of about 100 to 200 grams of carbs a day minimum for most healthy active females is a pretty good target to shoot for.

And then, if you aim for the longevity and the autophagy gain, just toss in a couple of times a month to a 24-hour, like a dinnertime to dinnertime fast. And, that's the strategy that I would use. So, the only last thing I'd throw in there is if you're post-menopausal, nice thing is it actually is healthier to do these 12 to 16-hour intermittent fast. So, it depends on the phase of your cycle and where you're at as far as menopause is concerned. But, that's what I would be doing as far as the carnivore diet goes and endocrine function and fertility. So, I hope that's helpful, Sherin. Good question.

Jay:  Or, you just need to quit screwing up women's menstruation cycles, Ben. You're causing some difficulties here. But no, there seriously was something that I did have to say that was serious, which is there are two podcasters that I don't necessarily listen to as much for my own health because they're very women centric. But, one is actually a Kion coach. Her name is Angela Foster. I cannot remember Angela's podcast name, but it's really great because it focuses on specifically biohacking for women's health.

And then, there's another podcast by Lauren and Renee, which is called Biohacker Babes. And, I just tried to send a lot of women in that direction just because that's not my area of expertise. But, if your clients–I don't know if it's Sheren or Sherin. But, if your clients are really interested in overall women's health and biohacking women's health, they're really great resources. And, they basically try everything that they suggest, similar to Ben, that immersive level of journalism. So, I always just throw out their recommendations as well.

Ben:  Awesome. Cool. Well, I dig it.

Man, we've gone through a lot. Let's give something away before we take off. So, we haven't done this for a while so we should do it. But, the best way you can support this show because it's a big labor of love, we put a ton of time just in the shownotes alone. We have really good shownotes. If you got to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438, you'll see what I mean. We spend a ton of time on the shownotes. We have to have an audio editor who goes through and cleans up all of our crap because Jay and I are total audio amateurs.

Jay:  Indeed.

Ben:  And so, basically, the best way to support the show is to leave us freaking reviews or give us your credit card number and just slip that to us under the table. But, safer, just leave a review. Go to wherever you listen and just pop it super quick. It'll take you five minutes. Leave us a review. If we see your review and we like it and we read it on the show, we're going to send you straight-from-my-front-door gear pack, cool tech exercise T-shirt, a cool beanie, great for this time of year, and a BPA-free water bottle, and some other goodies. So, if you hear your review right on the show, which is about to happen, just email your T-shirt size to [email protected]. That's [email protected]. And, we'll get something out to you. So, that being said, Jay, you got a review to push out.

Jay:  Yeah, man. It's Christmas time. So, I gathered 10 reviews that I'm going to read today. No, not really. But, I do have a really good one from aprilb6 who entitled this as top-notch science-based content. So, April said, “Love, love, love that I can get to the most updated information on how to upgrade my health. And, it's also entertaining.” That was my favorite part of the review. So, thanks, April.

Ben:  Short and sweet. I dig it.

Jay:  I know. I love it.

Ben:  Email us, April, [email protected]. We'll get a goodie bag out to you. And, the rest of you, leave us a review. Leave us a ranking. Just do it. Come on. Holiday season, now is the time to give gifts and ugly sweaters and useless socks and reviews.

Jay:  And, drink alcohol.

Ben:  That's right, and drink alcohol. All the shownotes are at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/438. Check them out. Jay, I'll catch you on the flipside. I'm going to go hunt me down some drinking chocolate.

Jay:  Do it, man. Pop in an oil and all.

Ben:  Vegan marshmallows, I got it. I took my notes.

Jay:  Love it.

Ben:  Alright, you guys, later.

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