July 8, 2023
From podcast: bengreenfieldlife.com/podcast/mattmorgan/
[00:00:45] Podcast Sponsors
[00:06:33] How Ben and Matthew Morgan met in Miami?
[00:09:57] How Matthew came from Montana and ended up a successful businessman in Miami?
[00:26:53] The three things that are most important to Matt's success
[00:29:13] What Matt's next moves were after establishing cannabis companies in Sedona
[00:37:10] How Matt lost 2 million dollars in less than 48 hours
[00:39:28] Why health and wellness became a priority for Matt, and what his health regime consists of
[00:53:52] How Matt got involved with stem cell therapy in Costa Rica
[01:00:58] What Matt's fitness and wellness routine involves
[01:07:59] What Matt's fitness and wellness routine involves
[01:11:46] What Matt and Ben think about FDA regulations
[01:13:40] What's ahead?
[01:16:07] Closing the Podcast
[01:17:37] End of Podcast
Ben: My name is Ben Greenfield. And, on this episode of the Ben Greenfield Life podcast.
Matt: The meltdown hit in the fall of '08 and I lost everything. I didn't understand what leverage was or being overleveraged or economic cycles, and I lost the cars and the house and was in my buddy's basement with $300 to my name. Was 23 years old. From there, I'm like, “Alright, I know I can be successful now. I proved it. Now, I just got to figure out the next big thing to sink my teeth into.”
Ben: Faith, family, fitness, health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking and a whole lot more. Welcome to the show.
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Well, folks, a months ago, I was down in Miami. As a matter of fact, if you heard my interview with Gary Brecka down there and also with Dr. E, you may have already kind of heard some of the very cool people that I met on that trip or heard about them and from them during a couple of interviews. But, during that same trip, I actually wound up going out to dinner, out to a fancy sushi restaurant. Matt, what was the name of that restaurant we went to in Miami? It was fantastic.
Ben: Gekko. Yeah, Gekko in Miami. As a matter of fact, I wasn't quite prepared because I did the podcast with Dr. E, rode my bike across Miami still wearing my street gear, showed up to the front of Gekko and they wouldn't let me in based on how I was dressed. So, I literally had to go to the department store across the street and buy clothing to come join you guys for dinner. So, it's a good memory.
Matt: I do recall. I do recall. You pulled up on the scooter.
Ben: That's right. Yeah, yeah, that's right. It was a scooter, wasn't a bike. It was one of those little motorized scooters I borrowed from Gary.
Ben: And, it was a great ride through Miami on the way back after dinner at 10:00 p.m. or whatever. I don't think I've ever ridden a scooter through so many clouds of cannabis smoke. And, we can talk about that later because you might have contributed to that. But anyway, so you and I were having dinner and I just thought you're one of–I've been calling Dr. E, Dr. De's one of Dr. De's, D-E. I thought you're one of his patients and friends, and we started talking during dinner and you got into all these fringe health protocols and stem cell experimentations that you were doing and these really cool supplement and dietary stacks.
And so, I was pretty intrigued with you after that chat and then you sent over to me afterwards via email some of the protocols that you're doing and I thought, “Gosh, it'd be kind of cool to get Matt on the podcast,” A, to talk about some of that kind of cutting edge health stuff that you're up to and your whole biohacking regime, but B, perhaps just as interestingly you told me that you're from my neck of the woods. You grew up in Montana, but now you're a massively successful businessman in Miami, primarily in the cannabis space from what I understand, and just have a really cool story from that standpoint too. So, I just figured we could hop on and share your journey with my audience. Good game.
Matt: No, totally, I thought our conversation was very mentally stimulating, Ben. I didn't know what to expect at dinner. Dr. De invites me to a lot of crazy dinners but it was refreshing. And, to meet someone from my neck of the woods and you're a wealth of knowledge in the biohacking space as well as just how to live a happy quality life. So, I really thoroughly enjoyed our conversation. I'm happy that we were able to do a follow-up on your podcast.
Ben: Yeah, it was mutual. Of course, any conversations are great over sushi that epic. So, anyways I'll put all the shownotes, so folks who are listening, at BenGreenfieldLife.com/MattMorgan. That's M-A-T-T-M-O-R-G-A-N.
But Matt, tell me about how you came from Montana to Miami. No, it's a big loaded question, but we got time, So, fill me in your journey.
Matt: Yeah, happy to do it. So, I was born and raised in Montana. My grandparents had 5,500 acres outside of Missoula. And so, for my early life, that's all I knew. I grew up how I think kids should grow up riding bikes, building rope swings into the river, getting muddy, getting dirty, hunting, fishing. I wouldn't change my upbringing for anything. And, I feel sorry for kids today that are so immersed in this technological matrix that they're in now. It's sad.
Ben: The metaverse versus catching fish and trout pond is a little bit different these days.
Matt: Yeah. And, it's just depression's sky high, anxiety, people can't sleep. It's pretty bad. So, I'm very thankful that I kind of missed that whole technological advancing in my childhood. And, also where I grew up, and Ben you can appreciate this being from the Northwest, it's God's country. They call it Big Sky Country. You can see the stars crystal clear at night.
So, growing up, I worked for my grandfather a lot on the farm but I also tried other jobs. I worked in a huckleberry factory when I was 14 years old making different huckleberry products. Huckleberries are this berry that grows up in the mountains of Montana and all these different products are made from gummy bears to syrups to honeys to pancakes. I mean, you name it. And so, they ship them all over the country, sometimes globally.
Ben: Same thing in Idaho too. By the way, I grew up in North Idaho, tons of huckleberries.
Matt: Okay. Yeah. I used to go to Lake Coeur d'Alene quite often, so familiar with the area. It's one of the most beautiful areas in the world that I've seen.
So, got fired from every job I had as a kid, couldn't hold the job, didn't listen to people, it was very against the grain, started reading a lot of books. My first book I read when I was 12 was Tony–well, my first self-improvement book I guess you could say was Tony Robbins' “Awaken the Giant Within” when I was 12. And, it really started to make me just question things like authority and why they'll make you do certain things. And then, I was really starting to understand the power of the human mind. And then, when I was 16, I read “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki, and I started to question traditional education. I didn't grow up with a lot from a financial standpoint, but I had a large family and it was very loving and everyone was happy. But, money was not the center stone of our family and we didn't really have a lot of money. So, in my head, I was always like, “I got to get rich. I got to get rich.” I'd have these posters with thumbtacks like '80s boards that walls were made of that you could punch right through.
Ben: Yeah. And, by the way, this is super interesting too because our story's parallel in this kind of weird way. My wife grew up–well, she was born in Montana, she grew up not poor but definitely I would say not a money-focused family ranch girl, farm girl, make everything from scratch and live by the skinnier teeth type of mentality; Whereas, my family was based on my dad whose father was a very successful businessman in Miami, and my dad wound up moving out to Idaho. And so, I grew up in a family with access to wealth from Miami; Whereas, my wife came from a poor Montana background. So, our family is kind of a blend of you, Matt.
Matt: Amazing. And, I appreciate the background, it's very helpful, Ben. So, chugging along, got the Lamborghini posters on my wall. That's all I want is the finer things in life, how do I make enough money to get out of Montana, get away from the farm, and the things that I started to despise. And, end up graduating high school by the skin of my teeth. I had so many absences. They almost didn't let me graduate, had to go up here in front of a school board and tell them why I should graduate. And, even though I had a 3.0 GPA or something, I didn't apply myself in school but I still got pretty good grades.
So, I graduate, I end up going to college because that's what my family wanted. No one in my family went to college so they're like, “You need to go to college and get a good job.” So, I went to college and I wanted to study business, of course. Meanwhile, I just read “Think and Grow Rich,” which was a game changer for me. Probably the most powerful book I ever read.
Matt: Really made me start to study the industrial titans. I read that in the summer ago after I graduate high school, so some are going into college and it really transformed my mindset if you will. So, end up going to college to study business and I figure out that the business professors were basically entrepreneurs that couldn't hack it in the real world and every business they started failed, so they came and made 300 grand a year and teach college as a professor.
So, I dropped out on my 10th day in college. My family was extremely disappointed and upset. And, from there, I was like, “Well, I got to do something to appease my family.” So, I went and became–
Ben: Where was that, by the way? What college did you say you're at?
Matt: I went to the University of Montana, so in Missoula.
Ben: Okay, yeah.
Matt: Yeah, the Grizzlies.
Ben: I know because I used to drive over to Missoula every spring where they'd had one of the first triathlons of the year of the spring season over Missoula. And, the swim was indoors on the Grizzly campus there and the bike went all over. But, the only thing I remember distinctly from that particular race, the Grizzly triathlon was almost every year. It was frigid cold and you're literally riding in your Speedo and racing through campus, literally just goose bumped out to full-on frozen and it was a great race. But yeah, I've been over to U of M a few times.
Matt: Yeah. I mean, it's cold seven months out of the year there, maybe eight. So, it's 30, 400 feet up and then nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. And, I actually learned how to swim when I was seven years old at that Grizzly pool that you're speaking of where you did the triathlon.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Matt: So, funny. So, became an electrician apprentice with the electrical union when I was 19 years old, and my family's like, “Oh, my god, you're going to be electrician. This is so great. You'll make 70,000 a year. You'll be able to have a family, support.” And like, “This is the best news we've ever heard.” So, I start doing that, go around the state doing different high-end electrical jobs because I'm a commercial electrician apprentice. And, I did that for about 18 months and the negativity on the job sites was just incredible. How do we work the least amount possible by still getting paid and not getting fired? And, they also protected each other, so it was always how do you stick it to the man. And, that just really was a crippling mindset for me.
So, I resigned after 18 months as an electrician apprentice and they said everything they could to try to get me to stay out. I was a very good hand, but I resigned. My family again was very upset. They just think I couldn't hold the job or do something for a long term. They thought there was something wrong with me. And, I was a party boy so that didn't help.
And so, from there, my father for my 20th birthday got me my real estate course to get my real estate license. I took the course, then after I resigned from electrical, I became a realtor. And, I looked like I was 10 years old when I was 20 and I was wearing a suit that I was swimming in. So, I can't imagine anyone would want to buy or sell a home with me. And so, the way I funded that because I didn't have any money was I went and applied for 80 credit cards. I got approved for 40 of them, so I had 60, 70,000 in a line of credit with these credit cards.
And, that's how I lived and started my real estate career was with the credit cards. I didn't sell a house for six months. I hired a real estate coach. I'm doing cold calls every day. I'm cold knocking on houses, getting stuff thrown at me. It was eye-opening and it really made me develop a thick leather skin. It made me uncomfortable every single day to the point of I started not getting uncomfortable anymore. So, I became comfortable being uncomfortable.
And, after six months, I was maxed on all my credit cards. I had $4 in my checking account, I was 60, 90 days due on my rent or not my rent but all my payments, my truck payment. I had to get a truck so I could drive people around for real estate. And, I had to move back in with my mom and I was at the wall.
Ben: Yeah, rock bottom.
Matt: Yeah, it was kind of like the make-or-break moment. And, I end up closing a real estate transaction, made $5,500 and I was just like, “Yes, I'm rich. I've made it.” And then, after that, I got confidence and started closing one after another and I think I did 13 transactions in my first year. Next year, I'm the managing partner of the real estate office. I'm running the company, so I'm crushing it. Buy the big house when I'm 22, have the new cars, and I started working with developers and builders. And, this is 2007-08-ish. And, I'm over levered, we're taking out loans to do all these developments, build spec homes, everything.
Ben: What city were you primarily operating in for your developmental real estate?
Matt: Missoula and the surrounding areas.
Matt: And then, the meltdown hit in in the fall of '08 and I lost everything. I didn't understand what leverage was or being overleveraged or economic cycles. And, I lost the cars and the house and was in my buddy's basement with $300 to my name. So, that was 2008. I was 23 years old. From there, I'm all like, “Alright, I know I can be successful now, I proved it. Now, I just got to figure out the next big thing to sink my teeth into.” And, after a lot of research online and observing some of my friends that were using medical cannabis, I was like, “Alright, I think this is the next big thing. I think marijuana is the next big boom. It's going to be like alcohol. It'll be the same size. It'll be accepted.”
And so, I went all in on it in '08 and I scraped together, I think, $80,000 from friends and family because they saw me successful in real estate so I had a little bit of juice there because they're like, “Alright, he can obviously make money.” And, I built out a cultivation and went and gathered a bunch of patients and started growing medical cannabis, failed miserably at first. It was much harder than I thought. I started getting my feet under me doing well and then this investor came, sold us–
Ben: You were growing it yourself?
Matt: I was growing and then selling it to the patients.
Matt: As a caregiver. So then, the gentleman that sold this waste disposal business for 40 million was like, “Hey, I'm building this high-speed cultivation and spend about 3 million, would you be my partner on it?” And now, I was in Deer Lodge, Montana, so I was like, “Alright, I could do that.” So, we came out 20,000-foot facility for at the time in 2009 that was a pretty big deal. And, we started pushing out products selling to patients and we were doing 8 million in revenue or something and a million EBITDA.
So, cranky right along for Montana standards. And then, in 2010, Montana legislation came in, it was like, “Yo, this isn't going to work. There's a dispenser in every street corner. This is not how this program is supposed to be. We don't want this.” Conservative Montana. And so, they say you can only grow up to 18 plants as a provider. And so, I was growing 3,300, so I had to shut the whole thing down. And yeah, again, just had to eat it and basically start from scratch in 2010.
So, I started to look around the country and I'm like, “Alright, I know I can do this now I've proved myself in Montana. Where's the state that's going to rip open and release a program that's very advantageous to the operator where I can really scale and do big business?” It happened to be Arizona. So, I packed on my Silverado and drove straight to Phoenix, Arizona in 2010 and open up a chain of hydroponic stores called UGrow that sells the lights and equipment and nutrients and things of that nature. I opened three of those and was selling that to all the caregivers and whatnot, networking throughout the Cannabis community in Arizona. I then apply for the license when that time comes in late 2010, early '11, and end up winning the Sedona license.
At this point, I have a mentor. So, this is the first time in my life I have a mentor, an older gentleman. He's like a second father. He's been there, done that, built massive companies, 4,000-5,000 employees. So, he's showing me how the world works. I was a stumbling entrepreneur until I met him. And, the minute since I met him, it just went straight up.
Ben: Are you able to share his name or is he a top-secret mentor?
Matt: Yeah, his name's Harold Schiffman. He still lives in Paradise Valley, Arizona. He's 40 years old of me, so he's almost 80 now. He was 65 when we met. And so, he splits his time between Sedona and Paradise Valley, Arizona. He's actually writing his life book and I'm actually one of the chapters and I'm his protégé, I guess, you could say.
Ben: How do you get just for people who might be interested, when you run into somebody like that, do you simply ask them to mentor you or was this just a relationship that organically developed?
Matt: So, I'll kind of give you a little background on that and people ask me this all the time actually. And, I had other mentors but this just wasn't the lock and key fit like this was. And so, my buddy in Arizona who I'd met was like, “Hey, you got to come to this entrepreneur class, it's every Wednesday. It's so good. This guy's the man.” So, I'm like, ” I don't like classrooms. I don't like this nonsense, but I'll go.” So, I go and there's 50 entrepreneurs and they're all shapes and sizes, all ages, all the way up to 55, and all different businesses, all different size businesses, and the instructor was Harold. And, you have to go around the class and say your name, what you do and I was annoyed that I was there. So, they're like, “Hey,” I was like, “Hey, my name is Matt and I grow pot.” And, he looks at me funny and then just continues on with the class.
And, at the end, he was like, “Hey, can you stay after class I want to talk to you?” And, I'm like, “Oh, my god, I'm getting in trouble in class that I'm not even really in.” So, I go up to the front of the class after people are leaving or whatever, he's like, “What do you mean you grow pot?” I was like, “I have these warehouses up in Deer Valley. I build them out and I grow cannabis and I sell to other caregivers and patients.” He's like, “I want to see it.” So, three days later, we met up there. Probably, I had two units. I probably had 4,000 square feet. So, I roll up these garage doors–I've already done in Montana so I knew exactly how to build it, exactly the throughput and everything. And, these are finely tuned machines this time. So, I rolled up the garage doors and he's like, “Holy crap.” He's like, “This is not what I had in my mind.” And, I'm like, “Yeah, it's like a machine.”
And so, from that day after, we started talking almost every day and he just started being like, “Hey, do you need help with this?” Because he had a massive network, all the big boys in Arizona and beyond. And, I'm like, “Hey, I just won this license. I need to raise some capital.” So, he opened up his Rolodex and I raised $7 million in 30 days.
Matt: Pitching to his people. And, he became a minority partner. And, he's a guy that doesn't–when you don't have a lot of money, you think money's the answer. And then, when you make a lot of money, you realize that money's not the answer. And, what's really fulfilling as a human being is helping other people and seeing other people succeed. I had no idea why these older guys wanted to help me. I'm like, “There's nothing in it for them.” Because they already made all this money and they still feel empty, but they feel fulfilled when they see a young guy get to the next level from their tutelage.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. And, by the way, you bring that up and it's interesting because I never got that either when people just go out of their way to help me. And, I'm 41 now and it's kind of interesting because I've started to get a lot of satisfaction when the 20 or the 25-year-old podcast or health influencer or personal trainer reaches out to me for advice. And, I actually am able to tell them something that I wish I'd known when I was their age, but you don't realize that as you get older it's just something you feel like doing. So, if you're younger and you're listening to this, if you have hesitation about reaching out to some older person who you admire in your sector for advice, I would say do it because you'd be surprised at the help that they'd be willing to give you. Even if they don't have a ton of time, they can make connections for you, they can network for you, and it is something that I've personally found a lot of satisfaction from.
Matt: I'm with you, Ben. The single most important thing for me and my success is mentors. Reading the right books is up there as well and also surrounding yourself with the right people. Those three things are the most important things in the world as far as being successful and living a fulfilled life because no matter how successful we are, I still don't have the wisdom of an 80-year-old. So, we come up to hurdles and we come up to different sticking issues in our life no matter what age we are and it's nice to be able to call someone that's been there, done. I'm 38, right? So, I'm like, “Hey, Harold, if you're 38, here's what I'm going through.” He's like, “Well, if I can go back and do it again, here's how I do it.” Experience and wisdom, there's nothing that you can exchange. I don't care how smart you are, it's not the same.
And, I love helping young people. I mentor some kids in their early 20s and I love to see that gleaming glimmer in their eye, the eye of the tiger almost. You know what I mean? It's like they have that, that same look you did when you were that age. You're like, “Oh, man, I like this kid. He reminds me a lot.” And, they also like you, you remind them of them when they were younger because it's almost like they get a second shot and you're their racehorse now.
Ben: Right, exactly. That's a great way to describe it. They can almost live vicariously through you.
Matt: And, it makes them feel alive again and young. And, when you win, they win through connection. So, I had talked to Harold for 45 minutes this morning while I was at the gym. He's like a rich dad/poor dad like my real dad. He's my best friend and then I have Harold who's my second father.
Matt: And, I owe the world to him. So, anytime I start a new company or anything, I just throw him a couple points on the cap table just because he is who he is. And, I'd never be where I'm at.
Ben: That's a good way to do things too. You can simply give some of these people who are helping out a little bit of equity on the side.
Matt: Of course. And, it's no skin off your back especially when you're the maker of the destiny of the company, throw them three, four, five points. You have majority of the cap table.
Matt: So, that's another way. That's just a little thank you card. And, if any of these things blow up into eight, nine, 10-figure companies, it's a massive win for them too and it's just like, “Hey, thanks, I appreciate you always being there.”
Ben: Yeah, it's a good point. Good point.
Okay. So, you're with Harold, you're building up these companies down in Arizona, and then what happens?
Matt: Yeah. So, I have at Sedona and I'm like, “Alright, I'm going to go grab downtown Phoenix.” I go negotiate Phoenix by the downtown Phoenix license. I have my vertical that Harold already saw and I expand on that. So then, I built a commercial kitchen, the extraction lab and I opened Bloom Dispensaries. And, the thing just takes off like a rocket because of the knowledge I'd acquired. And, I was a younger CEO, so I was always using the new technology advances at hand that the older guys weren't using. So, I'm firing mass email blasts and slicing and dicing data, and retargeting with emails. And, no one was doing that in cannabis, they just opened a store and said, “I'm going to sell this and hopefully it sells.” I treat it like a real business. I'm running like a Target. And so, I'm using real-world marketing. I'm attacking this like it's a normal business when everyone's like, “Oh, my god, you have a cannabis license, you're selling cannabis. This coolest thing ever.” I'm like, “No, this is another commodity. Now, we got to brand it. We got to market it and we got to treat this like another business.”
So, in 18 months, I went from zero to 25 million in top-line revenue doing 8 million in EBITDA. I had 125 employees. The thing was just ripping. I'm 27 years old at this point. I became a millionaire at 27.
Ben: And, just curious about margins at the cannabis industry. You have an 8 million EBITDA, but do your approximate net profit percentage?
Matt: It's five, six.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. Okay.
Matt: It just happens so fast. I go from getting a salary of 3,000 a month running my hydroponics stores. So, this thing takes off like a rocket and it's just 10,000 a month, 20,000 a month, 50,000 a month, 80,000 a month. It's just like if the lift was so crazy.
Matt: And so, ran that up, started to get the attention of private equity guys, family offices in late 2013 Q3, and I ended up becoming very close to a multi-billion-dollar family office out of Florida. And, they were like, “Hey, let us buy out your partners in Bloom and let us become your partner, and let's scale this nationally.” I'm like wow. They're like, “We'll give you unlimited capital, you'll never raise capital again.” I'm like, “Oh, my god, this is incredible.” So, they tried about the existing investors in Bloom, they want to 10x their investment so they wanted 70 million. And, the family office like, “We're not paying 70 million for these guys to get out.”
So, they brought me back to Florida and were like, “Listen, we know you love Bloom, it's your baby, but we really want you. How do we get you?” I was like, “Make me an offer.” So, they made me an offer, they said, “Let's start a new company and we'll capitalize $100 million and we'll be partners.” I was like, “Wow, okay. That's the most money anyone's put into cannabis today.” And, I'm 28 years old like “Let's go.” So, I sold my interest at Bloom to a commodities trader from New York and he actually built Bloom up further and sold it for $230 million about two years ago.
Matt: So, I start a new co in Q1 of '14. I started buying license in Arizona. I go apply in Nevada, Las Vegas, all around and start buying buildings and I end up building a massive footprint over three states and run the thing up in three and a half years. I basically run up to 120 million top-line revenue, 40 million EBITDA. I over 500 employees under management. I was number one 40 Under 40 in cannabis in 2016 by several magazines. I'm doing celebrity brands, running around with Berner who you might have saw on the cover of Forbes. We kind of grew up in the space together. I did Khalifa Kush for Wiz Khalifa. And so, it was a crazy time, man. It was a lot of interviews, a lot of press running a very large company that went from zero to nine figures in three and a half years.
And so, the thing was just printing money and doing very, very well.
Ben: And so, with some with some of these guys, if they say Khalifa, like some of these rappers or other notable figures, you're literally creating customized strains for them that they're branding and then their audience is purchasing cannabis strains that are branded by and marketed by these specific celebrities or musicians, et cetera.
Matt: Correct, correct. So, Berner had cookies and we did some other brands with him. The Forbes said he was the third or fourth most wealthy rapper because of his cannabis empire.
Matt: So, he's up there with under Diddy and Jay-Z.
Matt: Whiz, of course, has a massive following. Does very well, but we did Khalifa Kush for him. And, every time we do a drop of one to 300 pounds, it would sell out in 24 hours. Every kid wanted what Wiz Khalifa was smoking. He was the modern-day Snoop Dogg of our time.
Ben: Yeah. So, I can blame you for some of those cannabis smoke themes I rode my scooter through on the ride back in Miami that night.
Matt: Yeah, possibly. It could have been some inklings from the West Coast. And, the West Coast culture cannabis drives everything. That's where the global cannabis culture comes from is the West Coast, California specifically.
And so, at the end of '17, me and the family office kind of had our differences. We're butting heads, so I end up resigning a CEO and they bought me out. And, after that, I kind of had some wealth and I'm just like, “Wow, what should I do next?” And, I was running around with this, I became really, really close to this guy named Dan Bilzerian. I don't know if who that is.
Ben: Yeah, I've heard his name before. Isn't he kind of this high-rolling kind of controversial guy on social media showing himself with all the girls and yachts and things like that?
Matt: Yeah, yeah. So, he lived in Vegas. I lived in Vegas because that's where Reef was headquartered. Both young and had money, I had a lot of girls running around, so we end up coming together. I guess one way to describe him is a modern-day Hugh Hefner. He's about your age, always has 30, 40 girls around him. Loves to shoot guns and race car trucks and all that kind of stuff. So, we had a natural gravitation towards each other, hung out for a few years and he was like, “Hey, I want to do a cannabis company, bro. Let's partner.” And so, I was like, “Alright, let's do it. You're one of my closest friends. This will be fun. We'll have a good time.” So, we started a company called Ignite, which he still has and I helped him create it. Start it all up. We ended up moving to LA together. And then, I just kind of had some differences with some of the people involved, so I just decided to remove myself after about a year of that situation.
And then, I did a biotech company after that. I took a step back from cannabis. I was a little burnt out and I ended up doing a biotech company using plant compounds to create proprietary formulations to go after over-the-counter pharmaceutical, synthetic pharmaceuticals. So, I brought on Robert Gallo onto my science team. He's discovered HIV. I brought on Dedi Meiri. He was the number one cannabinoid researcher in the world. Joe [00:36:07] _____, he ran a massive pharmaceutical company. I was in charge of 500 million in budget. So, my team was stellar and it opened up a lot of doors.
So, I did that through '18, '19 and then built that up, and then that got acquired in Q1 of '20 by a publicly traded company right before COVID hit. So, I timed it pretty well. All luck, of course.
And then, COVID hit, I'm just kind of hanging out, didn't have a lot to do, everything was kind of on standstill. And, that's when I decided to move to Florida because they had less restrictions than most other states. And, I've been out here ever since, took some of the wealth I acquired through my journey, and deployed it into a very diversified portfolio. I have some operating companies, some passive investments in there and then I built and hired a team that oversees and manages that stuff. So now, I get to oversee that at a very high level, look for new opportunities, and then do cool stuff like podcasts with you.
Ben: Yeah, podcasts and stem cell injections, which we'll get into.
But, first if somebody does google your name, one of the first results that comes up is some viral YouTube video about how you lost $2 million in 48 hours. What was that all about?
Matt: So, that was back in the day when I really couldn't afford to do something like that and it was 2009 actually. And, I knew cannabis [00:37:33] _____ but I wasn't an expert. As far as building a cannabis company, I'd say I'm top 10 in the world. But, to get into the nitty-gritty of growing the cannabis, I always hire experts for everything and I'm kind of the conductor of the symphony. But, I was like, “Hey, kick on the CO2, higher, higher because CO2 makes the canopy get larger, the buds get bigger, more money.” I was growing in these massive horse drops that were 200 gallons and I was growing six plants in a horse trough. It was very archaic compared to how we grow today. But, this was 14 years ago, so cut me a little slack.
CO2 is heavier than our atmospheric air. Well, I figured this out the hard way, a very expensive way. And, this room was big, it was 6,000 feet. And, I didn't know this but the plant's root zone breathes oxygen. The plants canopy breaths CO2. So, I was pumping CO2 into these rooms getting ready for a harvest, trying to make as much money as possible. That CO2 sank into those big horse troughs where it had nowhere to go and it literally suffocated those roots. Every single plant died in 48 hours and I was two weeks away from harvesting.
Ben: Wow. So, did you just lose it all or were you able to fix the plants?
Matt: I lost it all.
Ben: Amazing. So, it turns out that even if you're the organizer or the conductor of the orchestra, you got to know a little bit about the chemistry too.
Matt: That's what made me dangerous is I kind of have a branding and marketing mind, but I started on the cultivation side of cannabis so I understood and I'd been through the trials and tribulations of cultivating, which is probably one of the harder parts of cannabis. So, I came from that and then built the vertical from the back up to the front end. And so, that's what I feel gave me us a step up against almost all the other competition.
In '17, Reef was the largest most profitable legal cannabis company in the country.
I don't think cannabis even though it's known for a lot of its medicinal and health uses, I think there's possibly a stereotype in the cannabis industry that it is the gold tooth pot-smoking rapper who might be an influencer or an entrepreneur in the industry or the dude who's kind of sort of a businessman but has dreadlocks and is high and don't supply half the time and maybe you can't trust him. And, I didn't really get that impression from you. I mean, not only are you a physically fit specimen but you also seem really into the health side of things. So, when did that become a thing for you?
Matt: So, first of all, I think if you're going to use a mind-altering substance, I think that anything natural is the best way to go. Alcohol is very, very bad for you in my opinion coming from someone that's drank a copious amount of alcohol in my life. I drank heavy from 14 to 34 years old. So, if you're going to use something mind-altering, I would recommend mushrooms or cannabis, psilocybin or THC, pick your poison.
Ben: What would be an example of a synthetic option that you would compare to those that you would think is less favorable?
Matt: Acid. LSD for psilocybin. For cannabis, there's synthetic stuff they sell at smoke shops, it's really bad for you. They spray these horrible things on it to get you high.
Matt: But, I'm trying to think of something that's more mainstream.
Ben: I guess, ketamine's very mainstream.
Matt: I like ketamine, though I think ketamine has its place in the world. And, I've actually had a prescription of ketamine before for sleep but it didn't help me sleep at all, it actually had a counter effect.
Ben: Yeah. No, it kind of floods the glutamate receptors in such a way that it makes you tired but you don't get good sleep architecture with ketamine in most cases, unless it's a very small dose to deal with a little bit of anxiety. And, even that's better for daytime use not right before you go to bed. So yeah, ketamine even though you might feel you're super relaxed, you're not going to sleep well on it, you're going to more kind of lay there and kind of half journey in your mind and not be able to shut down a lot of the kinesthesia or the synesthesia that occurs when you have that in your system.
Matt: And, that's why I love you Ben because you can drill down and give us a real-world snapshot of what's going on.
Ben: And, by the way, total rabbit hole and then we can get back because I actually want to hear about–I want to use this chance to jump into some of your health protocols and this giant list that you sent me of all the things that you do. But, LSD is interesting. I had a fascinating podcast. It might come out by the time this podcast is released with Andy Triana of Super Brain. And, he described to me how more than half shockingly high percentage of the top ultra-marathoners and the endurance athlete community are not only using low-dose THC, which didn't surprise me. Ever since I read this book called “Runner's High” about how THC can be used for focus and a little bit of a pain-killing effect during very long trail runs up in the mountains or extremely long bike rides or swims or things like that around 2.5 to 5 milligrams of THC. But, what shocked me was the number of them who use LSD, a 10 to 20 microgram dose of LSD. I think the focus-enhancing and nootropic effects of that wouldn't surprise people. There's a lot of people who microdose with it for daily productivity or creativity, but it turns out it is one of the strongest substances known for shifting the body and the beta-oxidation or fat burning during exercise.
And so, for endurance athletes who are going for very long periods of time, this combination of LSD and THC in low doses appears to be the secret sauce that a lot of the top people are using now. Isn't that interesting?
Matt: That's incredible. I had no idea. I just thought it was a bunch of people watching the walls melt.
Ben: Yeah. No. And, I've taken 10, 20 micrograms of LSD before as a nootropic agent and actually, it is something that seems to have as promised effects in that department but obviously, you have to be incredibly careful because the difference between say 10 micrograms and 50 micrograms could be the difference between a very productive day and a very distracted hyperactive walls nearly melting type of day. So yeah, that one you got to proceed with caution but it is interesting.
Now, you have this whole protocol that you sent to me. As a matter of fact, you're kind of to shoot over me like you're Monday through Wednesday protocol and a lot of the stuff I think people will be familiar with like cold plunge, red light, things along those lines. But, I think what first kind of perked up my attention when we were at dinner was you said, “Oh, yeah, I go down too.” I think you said Costa Rica and do these crazy injections. I think it's some kind of a stem cell protocol. So, tell me a little bit about that and just your general regime in general. We have some time to dig into it.
Matt: Well, first of all, I'll tell you about how I got started in this. I think it's important. I built three nine-figure companies by the time I was 33 years old. And so, I'd say I've done more than most in that amount of time. And, I was a big partier, my neurotransmitters were destroyed looking back. And so, I burned out when I was 33, didn't want to get out of bed, didn't want to leave my house. And, that was very unlikely. I'm a very high-energy person, high output, don't sleep that much. And so, it was very uncharacteristic of me.
And, I started searching for something to get me back on track and this new thing started to pop up in Beverly Hills called NAD+.
Ben: Oh, yeah.
Matt: And so, I was one IV of 250 milligrams was a thousand dollars. So, I was like, “I'll try it.” And so, I go to this high-end doctor office. I get this IV in me and it feels like the Spider-Man serum's going into me. It was the craziest feeling I'd ever felt. I was so run down. And so, can you imagine what NAD is basically getting your cellular structure back to an original state. Imagine how much work it was doing inside of my body. So, I felt I was literally–it was unexplainable. So, after I did, I was like, “Wow, I feel a little bit better.” Long story short, I did it four days in a row and then I start doing it two, three times a week and I start to get back on track and I'm like wow.
And, I come from a very addictive family from a genetic sequence like alcoholism, drug abuse, you name it. And so, I get very into things like business. And, I like cars and I like biohacking and health. And so, I was like, “Well, if this is out there, what else is out there?” And, that's what really hyper, I guess, thrusted me into this whole realm.
Ben: Yeah. And, by the way, I'm glad you pointed out about NAD because a lot of people view it as an age reversal or longevity agent. But, if you're beat up, if you're sleep-deprived, if you're addicted to a substance, if you've had a long bout of travel and your circadian rhythmicity or your inflammation is off or up, it is almost this magical shotgun molecule for all of those type of things. I mean, I did a subcutaneous 1,000 mg injection when I got up this morning. And, I'll usually do an injection or an IV once or twice a month. I wear the patches two or three times a week, which slow bleeds about a thousand milligrams over 12 to 14 hours into my system. And then, I also take oral supplementation, I use the BioStack Lab stuff and I go five days on, two days off so my body just stays super sensitive to the NAD.
So yeah, I use NAD, patch, injection IV, and oral pretty frequently in my own protocol. And, I have a very kind of hard-charging lifestyle, a lot of travel, less sleep than I'd love to have and it's a game changer for me.
Matt: Yeah. Anytime I feel a little off in the morning, I'll shoot 250, 300 mgs into my shoulders and you're back. I mean, it snaps you right out of whatever you were in.
Matt: But, it's one of my favorite things in the world, so I started doing that. Next thing you know, I'm looking at IGF-1 and some different antioxidants and then I start just getting more and more into this routine meeting. I actually stumbled upon you. I was working with a biohacking doctor named Dr. Michael Major in Scottsdale, Arizona. He started to get me–
Ben: You know Mike?
Matt: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So, that's my buddy.
Ben: Oh, my gosh. Mike's amazing. Mike's the guy I get my sexy time lozenges from for me and my wife, the PT141 tadalafil and morphine lozenges for date nights. Oh, my gosh. Yeah, he's amazing. He's a wizard. I still haven't had him on my podcast but I need to at some point.
Matt: He was really my first day-to-day coach. He would come to my house three, four times a week and we would hang out. But, Mike put me on to you. He's like, “Bro, you got to start listening to this guy named Ben Greenfield.”
Ben: It's funny. Shoutout to Mike.
Matt: So, that's how I first got discovered you. Yeah. And so, Mike got me on some really cool stuff and that's where I started direct injecting ozone into my veins. Mike was the one who showed me about it. And so, we started to have ozone parties at my house a couple times a week.
Ben: Tell me about that direct injecting ozone into your veins.
Matt: So, I have an ozone machine at my house and then we fill up 60 ml syringes with the heaviest concentration of ozone that the machine will produce. And then, I actually give myself an IV, which I used to be scared of needles and I'm giving myself IVs. It's pretty wild.
Ben: Just to push IV.
Ben: That's interesting. My setup, I think it's a little bit time-consuming. These days, I just use an ozone oil suppository and get the rectal delivery of ozone.
Ben: But, the way I've used my ozone machine is I'll actually pull 260 CC syringes of blood out of my arm. And then, I put that in with another couple of 60 CCs of ozone from the ozone generator, and then I've got a Simply O3 makes a bloody irradiation device.
Ben: So, I passed the blood through that blood irradiation device then it goes back into the other arm. So, you get ozone plus the blood irradiation, which uses the light photons to activate more ATP and kind of cleans up the blood a little bit too, which is fantastic if you have not that I'm trying to give up medical advice but you have Lyme or mold or something like that. And so, you can do what you just described but you can pull the blood first, ozonate it, irradiate it, then pass it back through. And, Simply O3 has one of those home machines to do it.
Matt: I'm going to actually going to check that out.
Matt: Because I used to go to the doctor and they'd pull out a couple liters of blood and then inject with ozone and spin it or whatever they do and then put it back into me. And then, we just started injecting straight into the blood, but you just got to go slow and be careful obviously.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Be careful. If you haven't done this before, I highly recommend you seek the advice of a physician friend or a nurse practitioner, or medical professional. But anyways, yeah, ozone is great.
Matt: Yeah. And, if I didn't have Mike at my house as a doctor, I would never have attempted this on my own. I had professionals at my house the first dozen or two dozen times maybe more that we did it. So, injecting gas straight into your vein just sounds disastrous in itself.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. Okay. So, you do the ozone and the NAD and that's part of your protocol. And, these are two things that kind of started to get you into some of these other things that you're doing.
Matt: Yeah. And, what I did I started to have real issues in 2019 when I was just doing NAD and they wanted me to check me into the Mayo Clinic because I couldn't gain weight, I was taking 80 pills a day, probably clogging up my whole digestive system. And, I went and did a blood test and my test was a 180. I had no testosterone in me.
Ben: Oh, okay.
Matt: Yeah. So, I got on TRT and now I run it around a thousand, but it changed everything. It turned me into a new human. While getting on TRT is where I met Dr. Mike, and so that's when he opened up Pandora's Box to me of all the things that are out there.
Ben: Yeah, how do you administer your TRT?
Matt: I do it daily. So, I do micro-dosing daily. I've tried it every way and for me, it's the best by far.
Ben: You mean injection?
Matt: Yeah, microdose injection every day in the shoulder.
Ben: Okay, cool, cool. Yeah, I know a lot of people who microdose use the scrotal cream a little bit of that in the morning or in the evening. And, microdosing is way better because it more naturally mimics the natural diurnal variation of testosterone. You might notice with the needles, obviously, it's more injections, a lot of people don't care about that, but people who are needle phobic often go with the microdosing morning and evening using something like the gel or the cream.
Matt: Yeah. As far as delivery, if I can inject that, I always inject.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Matt: But, I get it a lot of people don't like that. It's not for everyone.
Ben: They don't like the pincushion effect.
Matt: Yeah, right.
Ben: So, you got NAD, you got ozone, you have testosterone and by now, you're starting to feel pretty good?
Matt: Yeah, yeah, started trying out some other things, some inhibitors for growth hormone, ipamorelin, CJC157–no, CJC, what is it?
Ben: CJC1295. You mean stimulators or growth hormone, not inhibitors?
Matt: Yeah, stimulators. Correct.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. I think the CJC ipamorelin combo in the morning and the tesamorelin in the evening, that's the best peptide combo I've ever found for increasing the growth hormone. And, it gives you tremendous muscle gain, fat loss, sleep benefits. So, it's a great peptide stack.
Matt: I'm actually on to just straight growth hormone at this point. I'm using genotropin, yeah.
Ben: Yeah, that's good if you have growth hormone receptors. A lot of these plant flavonols like quercetin, for example, they'll actually increase growth hormone receptor sensitivity and kind of allow it to be, I guess, in layperson's language a little bit more naturally distributed throughout the body because some people get concerned about carcinogenic potential growth hormone, et cetera. But, I think if you're having a lot of plant flavonols and polyphenols and even in slightly higher doses using something like quercetin or injectable quercetin, that goes really well if you're using straight-up growth hormone.
Matt: Interesting. I'll have to check that out. I appreciate the feedback on that.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, for sure.
Matt: Yeah, I did that. Was doing a mass amount of glutathione. That made me feel even better. And so, just continued on the path. I had the lozenges that you love from Dr. Mike. And, obviously, that adds another level to your relationship status with your loved one
And then, I moved out of Arizona and I moved to Miami and someone said, “Hey, you got to come down to Costa Rica. There's a lot going on.” So, I went down there, I met these crazy stem cell doctors at this party that has just started a new clinic called RMI International. And, it was actually the brains or the visionary of the clinic, his name is Vincent Giampapa. He's out of that pharmaceutical nucleus up in New Jersey.
Matt: And, he was actually running up for the Nobel Prize in 2014 for his work in stem cells. And, we can get into that as well, but he was one of the godfathers of stem cells and I liked what all these guys had to say. I told him about my regimen I was doing for biohacking. They're very impressed that all the things I was taking.
Simultaneously, I met Dr. De and he expanded my program even much further which you saw. I said that to you as well.
Matt: And, they're like, “Why do you try stem cells?” I'm like, mean, “What could go wrong with stem cells? Let's go.”
Ben: A lot by the way if you hook up with a [BLEEP] organization. I have some people get their discs injected and blown up and in the back or people aren't using ultrasound-guided imaging. So yeah, stuff can go wrong but if it goes right, it's really right.
Matt: Yeah. And, thank God I didn't get connected to some guys that were doing it in their van or something and it was some of the top guys in the world now looking back. And then, just for the first time, I did 100 million stems of all three types in the intravenous. I didn't feel anything and then four hours later, I called the doc. I'm like, “Hey, Doc, I don't feel so good. I can't even hold my head up. I think something might be going wrong.” He's like, “I just put 100 million new cells in your body, your body wants to rest, go to bed.”
Matt: So, I went to sleep for about four and a half hours. I woke up and I've never felt like that in my life. I felt like I'd been looking at the world through a blurry lens and someone took that off and I saw the world. And, I'm in Costa Rica, so I'm in the jungle. I'd never seen the colors that vivid and just my mental clarity, I never felt it like that and my sense of well-being. It's like I was on drugs but I wasn't. And, I just felt like my self-confidence and I felt like I could do anything.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. You feel superhuman. I mean, when the pain and the soreness wears off for me when I do because I do that full body stem cell makeover up in Utah and you're hobbled up for a good several days afterwards. And, as soon as that wears off, you'll go to the gym and just crush it and wake up the next day and feel like you didn't even work out. It's nuts what happens when you get a high stem cell count delivered into every joint in your body or via intravenous administration. I think a lot of people again like NAD think it's just a longevity play. But, I mean, you feel superhuman on these things afterwards.
Matt: For seven to ten days, you're walking on the water. And then, I tore both shoulders, small tears, about an inch in each shoulder, exact same place from bench pressing and being stupid. I've never had surgery in my life and I'm trying to avoid it at all costs if I can. And so, they're like, “Hey, come up and let us inject stem cells directly into the tears with high-definition ultrasounds.” So, I went and did that. Obviously, it's very painful, but I was back in the gym in two weeks lifting light weights. In six weeks, I was fully recovered, and that was a year and a half ago and I've had no issues ever since. Because when I was boxing, the spar, I'd get shocks through my shoulders when I'd hit something hard because of that tear, it would give me a shock and I still trained heavily and I feel nothing. It's like my shoulders are brand new.
Ben: And so, how often do you go to Costa Rica for these injections?
Matt: Obviously my schedule is busy, but I go three to four times a year.
Matt: I would do it every month if I could.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. And, when you go down there every time, are they doing joints, or is it intravenous administration or a mix of both?
Matt: I always do intravenous but then if I have an issue with the joint or I have an ache or a pain somewhere, I'll direct inject there.
Matt: But normally, it's intravenous. I did a stem cell facial where they do 500 injections into your face with robotics.
Ben: Oh, wow.
Matt: So, that was super cool. You look crazy. It's like a vampire facial.
Matt: I don't know if I'm supposed to talk about this publicly, but RMI is going to do a clinical on humans and I'm going do the clinical.
Ben: Okay. If I get sued for you saying that, I'm going to blame you. So, what's the clinical involved?
Matt: So, this is what Giampapa was in the running for the Nobel Prize. As we know, stem cells can clone themselves and Giampapa was able to signal the stem cell to clone itself into a younger iteration of itself. So, in about 18 months, he could take any age stem cell and get it back to its version of when it was first created or born. And so, when he had injected those back into the study or the rodent or the canine, those are the two subjects for the study. The stem cells from when that mammal was born went back into the end of the specimen, it went into their bone marrow and signaled their bone marrow to start secreting their stem cells from when they were born again at a high level. And so, what they found is it increased life expectancy in the rodents and canines an average of 40%.
Ben: Wow, that's amazing.
Matt: And so, he believes he can carry that over into human beings.
Ben: Man. Well, keep me posted on that. That's actually super interesting. And, for people who didn't quite catch his name again, the doctor is Dr. Vincent and his last name is?
Ben: Okay, got it. Giampapa.
Ben: Okay, got it. Giampapa. Okay.
Matt: Dr. Vincent G-I-A-M-P-A-P-A. It'll pop–
Ben: I'll find and put it in the shownotes at Ben Greenfield Life, yeah.
Matt: He's in his 70s and he looks very, very good for his age let's just say that.
Ben: Crazy. And, a lot of guys like this who are into the biohacking, they don't do a whole lot from a fitness standpoint, or at least not as much as I think they probably should to kind of work on grip strength cardiovascular status, VO2 max, walking speed or running speed or the other things that make you in a phrase harder to kill. And, it seems to me like you actually seem to keep your body pretty well put together as well and it's not just about the injections and the creams and lotions so to speak.
Are you doing anything special from fitness standpoint using any interesting biohacking technologies or anything like that?
Matt: So, I trained pretty hard. I do weight-resistant training for 60 to 70 minutes four times a week isolating different body parts. I also train MMA twice a week with one of the Bellator Champions. And then, I've been running as well. I just moved to a new house in Fort Lauderdale, so I'm real close to the beach. So, this weekend, I ran six miles by the beach.
Matt: And, it's just the humidity and the heat and you just sweat. You get that runner's high like you read about.
Matt: And, I just turned 38 in March but I really have no issues with my body at all. I feel like I'm training almost to the level of I don't know, a semi-pro athlete. I'm doing a few hours of MMA. I'm doing four to five hours of weight resistance training. I'm running. I do a lot of stretching. I have a physical therapist that I see one or two times a week. He scrapes me. He cups me. He stretches me. I feel better at 38 than I did at 20. So, I have a cold plunge in my house so I cold plunge at least once a day. I found my sweet spot for cold plunging is in the mid-40-degree range, five to seven minutes. I've also found if I go too long in the cold plunge that it affects my sleep. I'm a very, very finicky sleeper. Probably from messing with my neurotransmitters and using substances for a lot of my life.
When we talked, Ben, I was suffering from severe sleep issues still. I don't know if you remember that.
Ben: I do remember that, yeah. What'd you wind up doing about it?
Matt: I gave up cannabis.
Ben: Okay, that's interesting because I think when you shared your initial protocol with me, you're doing, I was going to ask you about this on the podcast, a 10 mg edible to sleep.
Matt: Yeah. So, I stopped March 15th, which is my birthday, my 38th birthday. I stopped then. It was a week of misery, anxiety through the roof, want to crawl out of my skin, but I broke through it. And, I've been on edibles for sleep for 12 years since I was in my late 26th or 27, I started taking edibles for sleep and I've been taking them every night since. So, I broke a habit of 12 years because I've tried everything for sleep. I talked to your buddy up in Northern Florida and what I came to the conclusion of it was something wrong with my neurotransmitters. I could sleep. I could fall asleep ease like a pass out. I was not hitting REM and deep like I should. Not even close, maybe a third.
Matt: And so, my sleep has improved so much. It's incredible. I'm getting seven solid hours, three to three and a half of deep and REM. My mental clarities much, much better than it was when I was using THC on a nightly basis. I don't know if I'll ever go back.
Ben: Yeah, not uncommon. And, a lot of people whether it's cannabinoids or hefty users of, whatever, regularly using ketamine or micro-dosing excessively or doing too much psilocybin on the weekends or whatever, I think this is patterned into a lot of people's lives. Even health enthusiasts, for example. And, what happens is long-term serotonin desensitization. And, when that happens, you got to use a sledgehammer stuff to get yourself to sleep at night to just flood yourself with serotonin and it builds up over time and people kind of start to get on that up or downer roller coaster ride where you're using these downers to get to sleep and then you got to rip yourself wide awake during the day and then take your microdose and then you still want to go out on the weekend and journey or whatever. I think it's a much more rampant problem than a lot of people will admit. And, it just comes down to unintelligent use of the rampant access to supplements, plant medicines, and compounds that traditionally probably would have been more pharmaceutically accessible that people just have a whole pantry of and are able to use right and left whenever they want. Yeah, I agree it messes up sleep big time.
Matt: Yeah. Now, I take a lot of GABA for sleep, which I'm a huge fan of GABA.
Matt: Magnesium, L-theanine, the apigenin, the normal culprits. But, I wake up crisp, and then I cold plunge when I wake up now and it feels like I took 10 espresso shots. I have so much energy and my mental clarity is it's ridiculous. I've been on substances. I started drinking when I was 14. I haven't had a drink since New Year's Eve, but I really didn't get off all substances until March 15th of this year when I gave up cannabis. So, I'm almost I have a high of mental clarity and soberness. It's wild, but I just keep elevating and I'm addicted to it.
Ben: I'm glad you said that about the cold plunges too. So, I cold plunge about three or four times a day. Yeah, I have the Morozko right outside the door my office so I can literally I got a couple towels in my office, I could walk out there, plunge, come back in. and, I hate long cold plunges. They make you distractingly cold, takes a long time to warm up.
Ben: For the first little bit, you're working, you're shivering and everything, but I instead do 30 to 60 seconds three or four times a day I'm out there anytime I feel a dip in energy or after my little afternoon post-lunch siesta. And, it's a game changer. I think some people think, I'm going to do cold plunge, I got to be in there 5, 10, 15 minutes. But man, there's something to be said. Even if it's a cold shower for that quick 30 to 60-second dose, then jump right back into what you're doing and you're right, stimulant-free in terms of exogenous supplementation and massive effects.
Matt: I think cold plunging could take the place of caffeine in our society if people are willing to do it, but it takes a lot of mental strength.
Ben: I don't know. I still think they drink a lot of espresso and coffee in Sweden and Switzerland and Norway, but yeah.
Matt: No, no, they do. I'm just saying like being in cold water be a great replacement for stimulants.
Ben: Yeah, exactly. Or, do both if you want the increased fat burning. I like to actually go in there after green tea or coffee or some blood glucose disposal agent because it's just free-fat burning.
Matt: So, funny story. Today, I'm doing a niacin flush because I had a little–my last blood panel which I pull my blood every 60 days. If there was a little bit of cholesterol in there that we didn't like. I'm doing a little bit of a niacin flush. And, I took the niacin, turned beet red, and then gotten the cold plunge. It's one of the toughest cold plunge I've ever done for whatever reason.
Matt: I can normally handle very cold and I was just shivering in there maybe because the niacin flushing out all the heat out of my body. I'm not sure.
Ben: And, it increases nerve sensitivity. So, anything it touches your skin is going to feel hotter. If you would have gotten the sauna, the sauna would have felt hotter. The cold's going to feel colder. Sex is going to feel better, which is why a lot of people like those blood flow precursors prior to sex. So, yeah, across the board, it'll make everything kind of feel a little bit more intense or at least more noticeable. So, yeah.
You're obviously in the investment space and enormously successful and smart businessman. Now that you're into health, are there certain things you see coming down the pipeline whether biohacking technologies or supplement companies or certain supplements like the NAD that you found that you've kind of got your eye on right now?
Matt: Yeah. I only invest in things I believe in because when I tell people about it, I have to actually believe in what I'm saying. I made that rule when I was 20 years old. I'll never sell something I don't believe and I can't do it. So, I had such a good experience with the stem cells. I invested in that company. So, I'm a shareholder of that company. And now, it's like–
Ben: The RMI company?
Matt: Yeah. And, my investment is 7x in three years because I did one Instagram post and got 300 and some comments when I did stem cells. I think I generated 100 leads for RMI from that one post.
Matt: And so, I invest in things that I like. And so, the latest thing I actually invested in was peptides because peptides have changed my world in so many different ways and there's a peptide for almost every application no matter what you're trying to achieve. And so, what was frustrating to me is that a lot of doctors were overcharging for peptide regimens and getting people on peptides. And, I don't think the peptides should just be for the 1% of the wealthy or the 5% of a society. I think they should be for everyone because they really will help human beings and mankind.
And so, me and a couple of my buddies that are very, very successful and they're also my age were like, “Hey, let's just start a peptide company where we don't really charge that much, we charge a moderate amount of profit over the cost from the compounding pharmacy or the compounding manufacturer. And, we'll make this accessible to everyone. Let's not service 2,000 rich people, let's try to service 200,000 people so that we service a lot more people and just not make as much money off them. More of like a Walmart or Costco play instead of a Louis Vuitton play.”
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Matt: And so, yeah, our new company is called The Health Guys. It's thehealthguys.com and we just launched that about 30 days ago. It's going very, very well. So, it seems people are very receptive to wanting to better themselves and become a better version of whatever they are.
Ben: What kind of peptides do you like to use?
Matt: Do I like to use?
Matt: Well, I use TRT, which is not a peptide obviously. I use NAD three to four times a week. I'm a big fan of BPC-157. I actually use GHK-copper quite a bit. I'll do scrubs with–have you used Epithalon?
Ben: I have. Yeah, yeah. I typically one or two times a year, I'll do about a 10 to 20-day regimen based on the longevity research.
Ben: By Dr. Khavinson out of Russia, absolutely.
Matt: And then, you ever messed around with MOXI at all?
Ben: I have. Yup, very similar to epithalon in terms of the dosage cycle. Yup.
Matt: Yup, yup. Also, I like to do is I've done a couple scrubs I really enjoy with SS-31 followed by, I believe, it's FOXO4.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, for some of the androgen receptor modulation.
Matt: Yeah, yeah. For cognitive ability, I've also been using quite a bit of Selank and Semax.
Ben: Oh, those are fantastic. The intranasal version particularly.
Matt: That's what I use.
Ben: It's kind of like NAD, for example. It's one of those things where you beat up if you feel down if you got a little bit of inflammation or you're feeling a little sluggish. It's also fantastic, by the way, and obviously not FDA-approved but can be very effective for depression and anxiety type of symptoms as well. There's two or three squirts per nostril, the Selank-Semax combo. So, yeah, that's fantastic.
Matt: Yeah, that's one of my favorites.
And, to be honest, you said not FDA-approved, Ben, but the more I find out about the health industry, I almost prefer a lot of times I'm losing more and more faith in the FDA knowing how tight they are to big pharma. And, I try to stay away from synthetics as much as possible. And so, sometimes I prefer when it's not FDA-approved because that might mean that it actually works very, very well.
Ben: Yeah. And, the thing about that is you and I are kind of curious pioneers who like to research this stuff and learn a lot about it. I think the good thing despite them having many shortcomings is that the FDA does serve as a gate or as a barrier to ensuring a whole bunch of people don't willy-nilly get their hands on a stuff that could potentially harm them because lots of people aren't like you and me. They're not going to read the research. They're not going to know the dosage. They're just going to get a whole bunch of stuff that they feel gives them an effect and then we create same issues a lot of people have with sleep and excessive uses of plant medicine. So, I think that if a good customer education experience is set up, yeah, the FDA regulations become a lot less necessary. But, I think that there are many people, and I always have to remember this, I'm like, “A lot of people aren't going to do their research, they're just going to buy it because somebody said it, not know how to use it.” And, that's where the FDA does protect you a little bit.
Matt: Yeah, I agree with that and you got to be very mindful of where you're sourcing things. And, you're right, 80% of the population will just click it and get it like they won't do any back-checking. So, that's a very valid point. The FDA will definitely save you when it comes to, I guess toxic products, heavy metals, things of that nature.
Ben: Yeah, yeah, exactly. Basically, if you don't know what you're doing and have no clue where to start, nobody's there to help you, think twice about using a non-FDA-approved compound, basically.
Matt: Yeah, exactly.
Ben: Yeah. Well, you're going in so many directions and the peptides company sounds fantastic. Anything else that you think is going to be a big trend in the next five, ten years in the health and wellness industry?
Matt: I'm super excited about the biotech space in general. I think it's going to grow 10x in the next several years. I want to see what AI is going to actually do to it. AI scares the living hell out of me, but I think it will progress certain things at a high rate of speed. I think stem cells and exosomes are going to be a huge thing in the future as we fully understand how to use and harness. My next treatment on stem cells, I'm actually going to do one arm of exosomes, one of stem cell so I get the immediate spike of the exosomes followed by the trailing release of the stem cells.
Ben: Yeah, that's a great plan. I rarely do stem cells now without simultaneous IV administration of exosomes.
Matt: Yeah. So, that'll be my new protocol moving forward, I think. But, I do believe we're going to really push the boundaries of the life expectancy of a human being. We're making advancements so quickly now. And, that's only going to further speed up from an exponential standpoint. So, like I said, I'm really excited like that study Giampapa's doing. If that really comes to fruition, I mean you're talking about a life expectancy of 120 years in a human, something like that. So yeah, like I said, and I'm always kind of looking what's the next thing. We have the peptides on the scene which they've been around for quite some time now, but it just seems more and more is coming up. I've really been looking at hyperbaric. I'm going to buy a hyperbaric chamber soon and just keep adding to my regimen and further refining it.
Ben: Yeah, good investment. My post-lunch siesta time is usually when I experiment with all the technologies out there for meditation, napping, sleep, et cetera. And, I experiment with most of them in the hyperbaric chamber. I climb in there and I'll drag in a NEUROvisor or BrainTap or an Apollo or Hapbee or whatever. And, I've kind of built-in this nap time just to be able to experiment with new devices. And, that hyperbaric, it's fantastic. Shoutout to HBOT USA just like their home soft shell chamber that goes up to about one and a half atmospheres. And, that's my little lab experimentation device in the Zen den in my basement. You're going to love it if you get a hyperbaric. They're fantastic.
Matt: Yeah, that's something next to my list. So now, I appreciate the heads up on the brand and everything as well. I'll check that out.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. Well, I know we're running short on time, I'm going to put all the shownotes at BenGreenfieldLife.com/MattMorgan. I know you guys probably learned about a whole bunch of cool stuff that you can dig into. And Matt, as I suspected, this conversation was just as fascinating as a dinner conversation that we had. And, I just really appreciate you coming on and sharing this stuff with my audience. It's pretty neat to see how a small poor Montana boy becomes kind of the king of cannabis in the U.S. then moves on to getting a health and biohacking stem cells and peptides and beyond. So, it's a cool story and I'm sure a lot of my listeners are going to be keeping their eyes on you now. No pressure.
Matt: Oh, I appreciate it very much, Ben. And, I'm sure I'll be coming to you trying to get some more biohacking advice when we move forward. I really appreciate everything thus far and I look forward to continue our discussions in the future.
Ben: Well, you know where to find me and those you listening, you also do, BenGreenfieldLife.com/MattMorgan. Check them out. I'll make show notes for you guys with links to all this stuff and plenty more information. I'll even linked to the viral YouTube video on how he lost $2 million in 48 hours.
So, Matt, dude, thank you so much for coming on, man. I really appreciate it.
Matt: Thanks, brother. I appreciate you more than I can express. And guys, go check out my new site, thehealthguys.com, super excited about the launch and I want to get peptides in everybody's hands.
Ben: I love it. Next time we'll do this over sushi. Alright, later, bro.
Matt: Alright, later, bro.
Ben: More than ever these days, people like you and me need a fresh entertaining, well-informed, and often outside-the-box approach to discovering the health, and happiness, and hope that we all crave. So, I hope I've been able to do that for you on this episode today. And, if you liked it or if you love what I'm up to, then please leave me a review on your preferred podcast listening channel wherever that might be, and just find the Ben Greenfield Life episode. Say something nice. Thanks so much. It means a lot.
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In today's episode, I'm inviting you to explore the riveting intersections of health, business, and pioneering technologies with a truly unique guest, Matthew Morgan.
I was first introduced to Matt by former podcast guest Dr. De at a dinner she'd invited me to after the podcast, and his wealth of knowledge about experimental health protocols, stem cell therapies, and the future of supplement and dietary advancements left an indelible impression.
Naturally, I asked him to come on the podcast. He obliged, and now you get to hear what may be one of the most interesting conversations of your life.
Matthew Morgan is not your typical health enthusiast. With a storied background that bridges the green fields of Montana to the cutting-edge world of Miami's biotech industry, Matthew has always possessed an entrepreneurial spirit and a zeal for hard work. From harnessing the immense potential of the cannabis industry, where he launched and steered numerous multimillion-dollar companies, to co-founding OneQor Pharmaceuticals, Matthew's journey is a testament to his innovative mind.
For a brief overview and intro to Matthew, watch the video “How We Lost $2 Million In 48 Hours.”
But the innovation doesn't stop at business. With a wide-ranging portfolio of investments, Matthew is actively engaged in pushing the boundaries of health and wellness, longevity, and even the rapidly evolving Metaverse.
He's continuously tinkering with his health regimes, experimenting with a myriad of treatments, diets, and supplements, and always keeping his sights firmly fixed on the future.
Throughout our conversation, Matthew generously shares insights from his extraordinary journey, opens up about his approach to health and wellness, and provides a window into some of the most intriguing frontiers of biohacking and the supplement industry.
From tales of his roots in Montana, his ventures into the cannabis industry, his vast biohacking regimen, to his predictions about the future of health and wellness – this episode is teeming with fascinating tidbits that I guarantee you don't want to miss.
During our discussion, you'll discover:
-How Ben and Matthew Morgan met in Miami…06:33
- After recording a podcast with Dr. De, Ben was invited to dinner at Gekkō
- Matt was one of Dr. De's dinner guests
- Ben and Matt discovered they had a lot in common
- Grew up in similar areas
- Both are interested in health, wellness, and biohacking
- Ben had an interview with Gary Brecka on this same trip to Miami
-How Matthew came from Montana and ended up a successful businessman in Miami…09:55
- Grew up hunting and fishing, living on his grandparents' farm
- Worked for his grandfather on the farm
- Worked on a huckleberry farm
- Got fired from every job he had
- Read a lot of self-help books starting at age 12
- Wanted the finer things in life and to get out of Montana
- Barely passed high school and enrolled in college
- Read Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
- Dropped out of college on his tenth day
- Became a commercial electrician apprentice at age 19
- Didn't like the negative atmosphere on the job site
- Resigned after 18 months
- Disappointed his family again
- Matt's father enrolled him in a real estate licensing course
- Applied for many credit cards and lived off of credit
- Got comfortable with being uncomfortable
- Finally sold his first house after six months
- Real estate takes off
- Buys a big house
- Starts developing real estate
- Lost everything in 2008
- Ended up broke, living in his buddy's basement
- After researching, went all in on the medical cannabis industry
- Growing and selling to patients as a caregiver
- Partnered in 2009 with another company in Montana
- Got shut down when cannabis legislation changed in 2010
- Moved to Phoenix, Arizona in 2010 where he could scale
- Opened a chain of hydroponics stores
- Finds a mentor, Harold Schiffman
- Takes an interest in Matt's business
- Business starts to skyrocket
- Helped him raise $7,000,000 in 30 days
-The three things that are most important to Matt's success…26:50
- Ben and Matt both get a lot of satisfaction out of mentoring others
- Reading the right books
- Surrounding yourself with the right people
- The experience and wisdom of others are invaluable
-What Matt's next moves were after establishing cannabis companies in Sedona…29:14
- Obtains cannabis license in Phoenix and opens Bloom Dispensaries
- Unlike other cannabis businesses, Matt used technology to expand business
- Real-world marketing
- Email marketing
- Became a millionaire at this time at age 27
- Offered and accepted a 100 million buyout for Bloom
- Started a new company in Q1 of 2014
- Expanded into 3 states
- Had over 500 employees
- 120 million a year in revenue
- Awarded Number One in Top Forty under Forty in the cannabis industry
- Lots of interviews and press
- Created customized cannabis strains for celebrities like the rappers, Berner and Wiz Khalifa
- Became friends really good friends with Dan Bilzerian
- Started the company Ignite
- Moved to LA
- Took a step back from the cannabis industry
- Started a biotech company in 2018-2019
- Sold just before Covid
- Moved to Florida when to live where there were fewer restrictions during Covid
-How Matt lost 2 million dollars in less than 48 hours…37:10
- He was growing plants in horse troughs
- Didn't understand proper growing conditions and the impact of CO2 at the time
- Lost all of his plants
- Learned from this and had an edge over competitors
-Why health and wellness became a priority for Matt, and what his health regime consists of…39:50
- Believes that natural substances are much better than alcohol
- Ben's podcast with Andy Triana
- Matt built three nine-figure companies by the time he was 33 years old
- Was big into partying
- Burnt out at age 33
- Started searching for something to get him back on track
- Discovered NAD+
- Matt meets Dr. Michael Major in Scottsdale, Arizona
- Dr. Major advises Matt to check out Ben's work
- Starts ozone therapy
- Ben's ozone setup and protocol
- Started micro-dosing with TRT injections daily
- Dr. Mike Major compounds lozenge for Ben
- Podcast with Tim Gray:
- Tries out growth hormone stimulators, Ipamorelin/CJC-1295
- Podcast with Jay Campbell:
- Stacking peptides:
-How Matt got involved with stem cell therapy in Costa Rica…53:58
- Met Dr. Vincent Giampapa and Dr. De
- Felt superhuman after stem cell treatment
- Improved mental clarity and overall well-being
- Felt like he could do anything for 7-10 days after treatment
- Used stem cell treatment to treat shoulder injuries
- Fully recovered in six weeks
- Goes 3-4 times a year for stem cell therapy
- Matt will be participating in a clinical study on antiaging by Dr. Vincent Giampapa
- Study shows promise in canines and rodents
- Increased life expectancy by 40%
- Study shows promise in canines and rodents
-What Matt's fitness and wellness routine involves…60:57
- Resistance weight training for 60-70 minutes four times a week
- MMA training twice a week
- Runs on the beach
- Has no issues with his body at age 38
- Feels better than he felt at age 20
- Works with a physiotherapist 2 times a week
- Cold plunges at least once a day, 5-7 minutes
- Ben prefers shorter cold plunges
- Matt thinks cold plunging could replace caffeine
- Gave up cannabis to improve his sleep at age 30
- Niacin flush increases nerve sensitivity
-What Matt sees coming down the pipeline in the biohacking and supplement industries…68:07
- Only invests in what he believes in
- Excited about the biotech industry and AI
- Thinks that stem cells and exosome treatments will be the future
- Believes that we'll push the boundaries on human life expectancy
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
-What Matt and Ben think about FDA regulations…71:45
- Matt has lost faith in the FDA because of their ties to the pharmaceutical industry
- The FDA regulations do serve as a gatekeeper for people that don't research extensively
- FDA will protect you from toxic compounds and heavy metals
-And much more…
- Disrupt Healthcare: September 29 – October 1, 2023
Join me for the Disrupt 2023 Event in Atlanta, Georgia between September 29th – October 1st. This highly practical and immersive workshop will feature live Q&As, my top secrets for career success, and much more! Head to bengreenfieldlife.com/disrupt2023 to claim your spot today.
- Couples Collective: October 25 – 29, 2023
Join Jessa and me for an exclusive and immersive way to explore health, wellness, and mindset with your significant other in Napa, California October 25th – 29th. Head over to ownitcoaching.com/couples-collective to apply.
- Keep up on Ben's LIVE appearances by following bengreenfieldfitness.com/calendar!
Resources from this episode:
– Podcasts and Articles:
- Regenerating Your Thymus Gland, BPC-157, The Liver King Controversy, Growth Hormones & Much More With Marcos De Andrade (Dr. De).
- The Superhuman Protocol That Declumps Cells, Hyperoxygenates The Body, Restores Cellular Wellness & Much More, With Gary Brecka.
- Simple Tricks To Banish Anxiety & Panic, Rib Adjustments For Better Sleep, Nootropic & Smart Drug Stacks, The Science Of Getting Better In Bed, LSD For Performance & Much More With Go SuperBrain’s Andy Triana.
- The Latest New Health Gadgets You’ve Never Heard Of, The Intersection of AI & Biohacking, Miracle Mornings & Much More With Tim Gray.
- How To Use Testosterone, Peptide Stacks That Will Blow Your Mind, The Truth About Getting Peptides On The Internet, & Much More With Jay Campbell.
- Everything You Need To Know About Peptides Part 2: The Best Peptide Stacks for Recovery, Fat Loss, Muscle Gain, Immunity, Anti-Aging & More.
- Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
- Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
– Other Resources:
- NAD IV
- NAD Patches (use code BEN for $100 off your first order)
- Biostack Labs NAD Regen
- Ipamorelin (use code BEN to save 15%)
- GABA With L-theanine
- Morozko Forge
- The Regenerative Medicine Institute
- Dr. Vincent Giampapa
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Fart of War: The Fart of War is a hilarious, slightly odorous card game designed by my sons and me as part of our first-ever father-son gaming company, Fried Pickles Games. Head to fartofwar.com to learn more about this unique game and to grab your own. Your family will never sit around the table for game night the same way again.