September 9, 2023
From podcast : https://bengreenfieldlife.com/podcast/qa-461/
[00:02:38] Spicy stuff for fat loss?
[00:11:09] Penis optimization research
[00:16:17] “Micro workouts”
[00:19:40] Listener Q&A
[00:20:05] I want to speak about health, nutrition, and well-being in general what is a good course (online or not) to get that validation?
[00:31:55] Is it OK to listen to podcasts etc. in the sauna on Bluetooth earphones or is it still bad for health?
[00:41:31] I can’t afford the ARX machine, so is there another way to do a simple set to failure?
[00:45:44] What's your recommended setup for a treadmill desk?
[00:51:18] What options do you recommend for males with low testosterone that are trying to have kids? I tried Clomid and Anastrazole for long time but they're not working.
[00:59:38] Closing the Podcast
[01:00:58] End of Podcast
[01:01:31] Legal Disclaimer
Ben: In this episode of Ben Greenfield Life podcast.
Spicy stuff for fat loss and the latest research on that, the power of micro workouts, growing a bigger penis, yes, you heard me right, are Bluetooth headphones bad for you, and a whole lot more.
Faith, family, fitness, health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking and a whole lot more. Welcome to the show.
Alright, welcome to today's show. Man, we have a lot of questions and a lot of fun news flashes to go through today in case the title opener to this show didn't indicate as such. Before we jump into what promises to be a rollicking episode along with a ton of questions to answer, I wanted to first of all give you the link for the shownotes should you want to go and find helpful links and resources and a whole lot more. We worked pretty hard on the shownotes and they're pretty darn good. Go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/461 for the shownotes. The other thing is that before we jump in, I got to tell you, you might have already heard about this, but it just launched and I'm super excited about it, I created a six-week course. So, I had a film crew come to my house and follow me around for a solid week filming everything from my bug-out bag and prep stuff and gardening tools in the garage and how I use everything to my daily routine, to the spiritual habits, to family routines, to space, meaning the ergonomics of my workstation, to biohacks, and a whole lot more. We package all of that together and it includes stuff I've never talked about before when it comes down to life hacking if you want to call it that or life design strategies.
So, it covers six different areas of life, this whole Masterclass that we filmed, primarily your time, your environment, your health, your soul relationships, and legacy. This thing turned out amazing. It's the first time I've ever done an entire comprehensive, I guess what it was called as a Masterclass. That's what you call these big courses these days. But, I had a fantastic crack editing team behind the scenes make an amazing final product for you and it's now available at BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass. So, you're not going to want to miss that, BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass. Let's go ahead and just jump right in to today's episode. Here we go.
Alright, we're going to kick off today with a fat loss. I am and have been for a very long time a fan of spicy foods. I dose everything, just about everything I eat except my morning smoothie in copious amounts of hot sauce. By the way, a shout-out to the company Joey's Hot Sauce. That's my go-to hot sauce these days. It's got, I think, three or four different flavors. They've got a hot honey. They've got a hot salt. But basically, their hot sauces are made from all organic ingredients. They have this one called Priscilla the Creeper. That's amazing. It's organic red sweet peppers and habanero peppers and poblano and cherry bomb peppers and apple cider vinegar, turmeric and black pepper. Amazing hot sauces. I also use a lot of capsaicin like ground red pepper. I'll sometimes make a cacao tea in the morning. And, I'll put a little bit of red pepper extract in that, a little bit of stevia and salt to give it extra flavor, so good.
But, there's actually a pretty decent effect of capsaicin on your metabolism. I mean, I've talked about before if you're going to go do cold thermogenesis or cryotherapy or a cold bath, there's a lot of so-called blood glucose disposal agents that you can take before that to lower blood glucose and enhance fat burning like bitter melon extract or apple cider vinegar or berberine, but then also spicy extracts appear to enhance the conversion of metabolically inactive white tissue to metabolically active brown fat.
Now, this is pretty cool. The way that it works, let me explain this to you before I tell you about the latest research. So, capsaicin, there's actually a study published in 2021 at Harvard Medical School show that capsaicin can mimic the effect of cold temperature or enhance the effects of cold temperature or cold bath, et cetera, to activate your energy-burning brown fat cells. Here's how it does this for you, geeks, out there. It activates a protein called TRPV1, it's called transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1. No, it's a mouthful, but that transient receptor regulates body metabolism and temperature. So, capsaicin activates that TRPV1. And, when it does that, it activates brown fat cells, and those in turn burn calories through thermogenesis to generate extra heat. So, that's one really cool aspect of capsaicin, but it does a lot more.
So, for example, diet sometimes stop working. I have an upcoming podcast about this with a thyroid expert named Amie Hornaman. And, there's a phenomenon called adaptive thermogenesis. It can limit the success of a calorie-low weight loss program. So, the way this works is thermogenesis is your body's process that converts calories into heat. And, that allows your body to maintain a stable temperature. It supports healthy metabolism and helps to control body weight. Adaptive thermogenesis occurs when your body reacts to reduced calorie intake by lowering the amount of energy that it burns, particularly fat. And, that occurs when your body is at rest. So essentially, your metabolic rate kind of decreases and that makes it harder to lose weight and creates this vicious cycle in which the more you reduce calories, the less effect they have on weight loss. And, it's one reason why a lot of people who are dedicated to a specific diet often get this yo-yo weight gain where the weight comes back on and sometimes it comes back on even worse. So, that's where thermogenesis comes in because there are certain nutrients that support thermogenesis. And, that increases your resting metabolism, allowing you to burn more fat and more calories even at rest.
And, one of the most potent plant-based thermogenic compounds studied to date is capsaicin. It's the major thermogenic compound in red chili peppers and it's actually been shown in research to not only, like I mentioned earlier, activate brown fat, but also increase metabolism. Now, normally you have white fat, and white fat like your adipose tissue, that can be pro-inflammatory, especially when you have excess amounts of this adipose tissue, particularly around the abdomen. But, brown fat burns energy, it gets triggered by cold temperatures and it also gets triggered by the intake of spicy foods like capsaicin. So, this latest study actually looked into the latest research on capsaicin. So, what it showed was via a systematic review and meta-analysis of all the latest research on capsaicin of weight loss in adults. It showed that it has modest effects, pretty good effects in reducing BMI, body weight, and also increasing metabolism, particularly in overweight or obese individuals, which makes sense because overweight or obese individuals have that higher amount of white fat on their waistline. So, it turns out that by using hot sauce, by using capsaicin, et cetera, you're getting this effect.
Now, the other thing that's interesting is this is going to be cool for you, fitness freaks out there, who may not be trying to lose a lot of adipose tissue but who want the ergogenic effects of capsaicin. Well, there was another recent study, this one came out just a few months ago and it studied the effects of a low dose to a high dose of capsaicin on squat performance on activating muscle and on overall body ratings of perceived exertion and muscle damage and protein breakdown and metabolic response and 24-hour recovery. Meaning, they looked into a lot of parameters. Now, what they showed was that capsaicin intake pre-workout favorably influenced your squat performance, decreased your rating of perceived exertion, meaning how hard you think you're working in the gym, and decreased muscle damage compared to a placebo control.
Now, this is actually interesting because the high dose exhibited most of these effects showing that it actually has this dose response curve. Now, I understand that capsaicin can be a little bit irritating to the gut. There is one company that I know that's made this compound called phenyl capsaicin where they bind it in a gel. This is one of those forms of capsaicin that different companies will use in their weight loss supplements. I know the Life Extension Foundation has a fat-burning supplement. They use the phenyl capsaicin in it for people who have a sensitive stomach to red chili peppers or hot sauce or something like that. So, there's a way around this if your body doesn't do well with hot foods or if your gut doesn't do well with hot foods with this phenyl capsaicin that you can look on the label for and some of these thermogenic compounds.
The other thing that you can think about is if you visit my home in my pepper grinder on my kitchen counter is a form of a similar fat-burning extract that acts very similarly to capsaicin but it isn't quite so spicy and irritating to the stomach. And, this one's called grains of paradise. I buy it the same way as I would buy black pepper. I just get organic grains of paradise on Amazon, but I put it into my pepper grinder instead of black pepper even though it kind of tastes and looks like black pepper. Now, this stuff has what's called paradoxine in it. And, this can actually increase thermogenesis very, very similar to capsaicin. So, you can either get grains of paradise pepper, especially if capsaicin extract or hot chili peppers or things like that don't do well with your stomach or you could do like I do and do both. I use hot sauce. I use the red pepper extract, the powder in things like the tea that I mentioned earlier. And then, I use the grains of paradise pepper that'll grind onto salads and stews and dinners and steaks and things like that. So, this is now known to be not only a way to enhance performance but also a way to enhance fat loss.
There's a lot going for capsaicin and these latest studies just kind of back up that idea that capsaicin is a natural thermogenic aid and can be very, very helpful based on its activation of this TRPV1 vanilloid receptor. So, pretty cool stuff. And again, if you want to get it in a hydrogel format that's not irritating to the stomach that form of the supplement is called phenyl capsaicin if you want to look around for that on the label of a thermogenic aid, even though I think you can just do it naturally with hot sauce and grains of paradise and red chili pepper, et cetera. So, pretty interesting research on capsaicin.
Now, this is I guess kind of spicy. It's not related to food spiciness but bedroom spiciness if you see where I'm going here. I have a friend who was on the podcast before, his name is Dr. Judson Brandeis. He's one of these sexual performance aid consultants. He actually provided me with a lot of information way back in the day when I did the, pardon the title, “New Year, New Dick” article for Men's Health Magazine in which I spent six months doing everything one could do to improve sexual performance, orgasm quality, and yes even penile size, meaning the penile length and the erectile quality. We did all sorts of things for that article. It was pretty interesting, things like stem cell injections and PRP and acoustic shockwave therapy and reduced ejaculation frequency and all sorts of stuff that are probably causing anyone driving in a minivan with their kids right now to put their earmuffs on. So, yes, we are talking about the penis for the next few minutes. So, if you want to fast forward, go for it.
And so, what Judson said to me, a couple of weeks ago, was a study that just came out that he was involved with publishing in the Open Access Journal andrology. The title of this study was “Increasing penile length and girth in healthy men using a novel protocol.” This study is hilarious called “The P-long study.” So, what they did was they used platelet-rich plasma injections, PRP injections, and believe it or not that's not fringe. Just about any sexual performance clinic these days does that injection where they literally take the blood out, they spin it in a centrifuge, they isolate these platelet-rich plasma factors, then they inject them back into the penis. Usually, there's a nerve-numbing agent that goes in first. You don't feel a thing. I've had it done multiple times, but then what they combined this with was what they call a vacuum erection device known in more popular vernacular as the famous penis pump and then nitric oxide precursor supplements. This would be things that have stuff like beetroot extract in them or arginine or citrulline, et cetera.
Now, what they found after this protocol where there's a PRP injection, daily use of these oral nitric oxide boosting supplements, this one had citrulline and beetroot extract in it, very easy to find and get, and then twice daily use of a penis pump for 20 minutes. They found that healthy men demonstrated significant increases, and we're talking about a circumference about half an inch greater and a length about 0.8 inches greater for the erect penis with no adverse effects. And, it was a significant increase in penile length, penile girth, and erectile function improvement. So, whether you have something like erectile dysfunction or whether you simply want to get bigger and better, which I know is a desire of a lot of men even though it might matter less than you think compared to your personality and your ability to protect and provide. However, the idea here is that there is a way to make your penis bigger and longer.
There's a new study out about it and I'll put a link to it, but basically, it's very simple. It's the use of PRP, penis pump, and nitric oxide precursors. And, I suppose if you couldn't afford or couldn't get access to PRP injections, you could probably get one of these digital penis pumps. I have one. I don't know if you can see it in the podcast video but it's on the shelf behind me. I haven't been using it lately, but I used it quite extensively in that article for Men's Health Magazine. It works as advertised. I can tell you that. I'll also tell you one funny story. I attempted for the sake of extreme efficiency to go hands-free with mine one day, had my penis pump propped up against the desk while I was working on my keyboard. And, because it's an automated suction device as I'm sitting there working on my keyboard with the penis pump leaning against my stand-up desk hands-free, I felt a sucking sensation. And, one of my precious balls got sucked into the penis pump and I arrived in pain and discomfort as I stood there trying to get the vacuum seal to unlock while watching my right testicle turn a nice pretty blue color. I eventually got it off. But, from that point forward, I never used my penis pump without great care and dedication taken to ensuring that my balls were protected. And, I do not recommend you multitask or at least don't go hands-free and prop up the penis pump against a standing desk while you're using it. But, it turns out it can increase penile length and girth when you especially combine it with these PRP injections and nitric oxide precursors. So, there you have it. Interesting takeaways.
And, by the way, my wife has also done a very similar protocol. She's done the PRP injections and the acoustic shock wave therapy and has even done stem cell injections into her lady parts. And, these type of protocols work similarly for the ladies too, although I don't think that they may make what I suppose we would call a C-pump. Maybe it exists out there. Wouldn't be surprised if it did, but she didn't use anything like that. So, there you have it.
And then, the last news flash I want to get into today before we answer some questions was an interesting study on so-called micro workouts. So, micro workouts, they're abbreviated VILPAs. And, there was a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association of Oncology on this and they looked at these VILPAs, vigorous intermittent lifestyle physical activity. That means stopping during the day and doing short bouts of exercise anywhere from one to four minutes. The interesting thing was that they took 22,398 non-exercising adults and they gave them 3.4 to 3.6 minutes of a vigorous daily motion per day. And, this can be push-ups, it can be burpees, it can be running briefly on the treadmill, it can be exercising briefly on an exercise bike. What they found was that when these people engaged in these VILPAs that there was a significant decrease in cancer incidents among the non-exercising adults who engaged in these short micro workouts during the day.
Now, whether or not you're concerned about cancer or have a high risk for cancer, I think this is very interesting because I stop all the time throughout the day to do what I call workout snacks. In my book “Boundless,” there's a whole page in the workout section that shows everything from core foundation exercises to kettlebell swings, to ELDOA stretches, to the basic push-up squat, burpee protocol. I've got a kettlebell on the floor of my office. I've got a pull-up bar going up the stairs behind my office. And, I'm constantly stopping to do jumping jacks, to do push-ups. My goal is that by the time I get to the end of the day, a workout is an option not a necessity because I've kind of life-hacked my day to engage in these teeny tiny movements throughout the day. I show off several of them, this Masterclass that I did and I talk more about this in the Masterclass. That's the one I mentioned, that new one at BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass. But, it turns out that although there is, of course, back to the idea of thermogenesis, a mild increase in metabolic rate when you're fidgeting or stopping during the day to do teeny tiny workouts or these so-called movement snacks, there is, in addition to that, a decreased risk of cancer incidents. So, very good to know.
And, my rule for myself even though this will vary depending on your job is that for every half hour that I'm working unless I'm recording a podcast in which case I'm standing if I'm interviewing someone, sometimes you may have noticed I'm walking on my treadmill, but besides if I'm just parked in front of my computer doing a podcast, I stop frequently and I'll sometimes be cranking out phone calls and consults while doing push-ups, while doing air squats, while walking around the backyard, while finishing up one call stopping doing 10 burpees and then jumping into the next call. So, if you ever speak on the phone with me and it sounds like I'm breathing hard, usually it's because I'm walking up a hill or on a treadmill while I'm talking to you or I've just finished a few burpees. And, I think it's a really, really great way to naturally include physical activity throughout your day. So, yet another surprising benefit of daily micro workouts. So, there's your news flashes for the day. Now, let's jump into our listener Q&A.
Alright. Well, if you want to submit a question for the podcast, you can send me a message on Instagram, on Twitter, or on Facebook. I'm easy to find in any of those platforms by typing in my name. You can also submit a question over at BenGreenfieldLife.com. We have a little question asking box over there. I go through on a couple of times a month basis and select a few questions that I think are interesting.
And, the first question is from Anil. Anil says, “Love the stuff you put out, and I practice what is possible within limits here in beautiful Kathmandu.” Hello, Kathmandu. I don't know where that is, but it does sound beautiful and slightly hard to pronounce. “My question is, since I want to speak about health, nutrition, and well-being in general, what is a good course online or not to get that validation?”
Well, I'm asked this question a lot like which personal training certification I should get or which wellness coaching certification. I want to be a health coach, what do I do? And, it's a tricky question because many of these courses do require you to have an undergraduate or a graduate degree in an exercise science or nutrition science-related field. My background is that I got a master's in exercise science from University of Idaho with an undergraduate degree in exercise science. My emphasis was in biomechanics and nutrition and pharmacology. And then, I went from there and I got an NSCA personal training certification. That's a National Strength Conditioning Association, an NSCA CSCS, which is a Certified Strength Conditioning Coach, and then I also got what's called a CISSN, a Certified Sports Nutritionist from the ISSN.
So, I went the root of going to college and then getting degrees that required a collegiate degree on top of that. And, for me with the first eight to ten years of my existence in the exercise field, working as a personal trainer, managing clients, working at gyms and studios, et cetera, it was a good idea for me to have the piece of paper that show that I actually knew that I was talking about and it also reduced the potential for litigious action against me because I was just some off the street personal trainer with the weekend online open book certification. However, that doesn't mean that you have to go back to a four or a five or six-year degree in college to become a health coach or to become a personal trainer. There are now some very good health coaching certification programs out there.
Now, I also realize they're a dime a dozen and there are a ton of them. So, I want to tell you a few that I think are the best. The first is IIN. I've actually done a few courses with IIN that's not the CISSN that I have. That's not the sports nutrition certification, different company. But, IIN stands for Institute for Integrative Nutrition. The Institute for Integrative Nutrition has been around for 30 years. They have a bunch of different coaching courses, including their flagship health coach training program. It's a very good health coach training program. I've been impressed with their coursework. That one has 41 modules. It takes either six or 12 months. You can do it online. They've got a lot of really great interactive training methods, fantastic website. And again, you can do that literally from your living room, your basement, your bedroom, the gym, whatever, and get a really good health coach certification program along with a lot of other ongoing continuing education credits through the IIN. It's the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.
Now, there's also the College of Naturopathic Medicine. They are based in London in the UK but they have online certifications as well as campus-based training in health coaching, natural therapies, complementary therapies. And so, this is a program that teaches you more holistic medicine but also nutrition and health, fitness and health, business, promotion and marketing yourself, coaching and health. And, that one's called the College of Naturopathic Medicine, the CNM.
If you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/461, I'll link to all of these resources and websites in the shownotes. They're a little bit more bent towards medicine obviously because it's through the College of Naturopathic Medicine, but if you didn't want to be a naturopathic doctor but you wanted a naturopathic-esque approach to your health coaching or your personal training, that's a good one.
Okay, the next one, similarly, is a medical-based program. It's called The Institute of Functional Medicine. As a matter of fact, I've been very impressed with all the doctors who I've worked with who have been a part of the Institute of Functional Medicine, are trained as a functional medicine practitioner. But, this would allow you to be what's called a functional medicine health coach, would allow you to do things like review lab work, blood work, learn about positive psychology, coaching techniques, nutrition, and meal planning. They're big on the psychology of eating and mind-body medicine, but that's everything through a functional medicine lens. And, I really like the Institute of Functional Medicine as another option. It's called IFM.
Now, there's also a few people in the industry who have really great courses. One is Wild Health. If you listen to my podcast with Dr. Matt Dawson who is a doctor with Wild Health, you'll learn about this Wild Health network of physicians. They're spread across the country. And, if I tell people if you're looking for a good doctor, you don't know where to start, generally go to the wildhealth.com website and you're going to find personalized health care, whether it's telemedicine or whether it's boots on the ground near where you live with a doctor who I would vouch for. They use in-depth genetic analysis, advanced blood work, and lifestyle evaluations. They personalize all their care to cover mind, body, and spirit. And, they do a really good job. They use a lot of advanced testing, DNA testing, and what is called precision medicine.
But, one of the things that Dr. Matt Dawson and I talked about in my podcast with him is that they also have the ability for someone who's not a doctor to go through their educational protocols and learn everything it is that their doctor is learning and get this Wild Health certification that allows you to be a trainer, that allows you to be a health coach, that allows you to do things like reviewing blood work. And, it's a membership-based program. You join, you go through a series of protocols that teach you how to analyze DNA, biometrics, track lifestyle activity, provide exercise and recovery recommendations, look into genetics and blood work. So, you have access to all of the same training that their doctors would go through to allow you to become a Wild Health certified almost like a health coach and you're getting educated.
Now, this I think is a better program and is best tailored for a doctor who also wants to be a health coach, who also wants to be a personal trainer, who wants to learn how to practice precision medicine. But, they have an entire program that you can join even if you're not a doctor to learn about advanced genetic testing, advanced blood work testing, how to create personalized health plans, how to be a health coach. And so, they have a fantastic offering as well. It's Wild Health. You can check them out at wildhealth.com.
Now, there's another guy named Paul Chek. Paul Chek has what's called the CHEK Academy. He's also been on my podcast before. The CHEK Academy is fantastic. You learn functional anatomy, you get this huge library of assessments and exercises to do on your clients all created by Paul Chek who is the wizard when it comes to marrying mind, body, and spirit optimization. They have a really great training for diet and lifestyle management, coaching techniques, a coaching framework. And, they've put together a fantastic program that allows you to integrate what Paul calls his holistic approach. You even learn corrective holistic exercise where you understand the relationship between the glands, the organs, posture, breathing. You get this full approach to the human body. I think it's one of the coolest and most unique approaches especially if you're going to work with athletes, especially if you want to learn a lot more about the fitness and the movement component of things, but also delve into a lot of the deep science and even some of the ancestral more kind of like eastern concepts that Paul builds into the different programs that he offers. So, the CHEK certification would be another fantastic one to look into. And, that's through the CHEK Institute.
Now, the next one I've got a few more for you. And, by the way, I'm going to stop here for a second and say that, yes, if you were to take my Masterclass, which I realize I'm shamelessly plugging throughout this podcast, you would also learn a ton of the underlying knowledge that you would need to be a really good health coach. So, I would say if you're an existing personal trainer, physician, physical therapist, chiropractic doc, et cetera, if you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass, that also would allow you to learn the way that I operate and how I work with my clients. And, I also have a Ben Greenfield Coaching Certification Program. I don't want to spend the whole time tooting my horn, but I will link to my coach certification programs as well in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/461.
But, I also want to give a head-on to a couple of others. The first is the Kresser Institute run by my friend Chris Kresser. Now, he has a 12-month functional medicine practitioner training and certification program for practitioners, for doctors who want to learn how to interpret functional labs, how to apply real-time clinical insights, up-to-date treatment protocols, et cetera. But, he also has for the layperson a functional blood testing course. It's a self-paced 40-hour course that allows you to learn how to interpret blood chemistry panels. He's got another one called functional nutrition mastery, which is a self-paced 40-hour functional and ancestral nutrition course to discover how to create things like nutrition plans and meal plans for your clients or for your patients. And again, you don't have to be a doctor necessarily to go through some of the programs with the Kresser Institute. Although, if you were a doctor, you're also going to learn some things that would hopefully allow you to practice better medicine and provide even better care to your patients. So, he has what are called his functional medicine training courses and things like functional nutrition mastery and functional blood testing and then also his practitioner training program, which similar to Wild Health is for practitioners and doctors.
So, that one's called The Kresser Institute. It's called the Kresser Institute for Functional and Evolutionary Medicine. Chris Kresser, he's a guy I've known for, gosh, I think about probably 12, 13 years now. Really smart doctor, has a great certification and education program on his website as well. Some of these have some overlap and you may want to go to these different websites that I'm talking about and choose the one that resonates best with you.
Now, there is a newer program that's also pretty cool, a very popular podcast guest of mine. Dr. Leland Stillman has just launched a series of courses that basically are called the Fundamentals of Wellness Course and Coaching Program. You learn not only if you're a doctor how to work in more functional medicine, integrative medicine, and precision medicine into your routine. But, similar to the Kresser Institute, Leland has this entire program on everything from optimizing the thyroid to nutrition, to medicine, to lab reports, this whole library of courses and content. He just rolled that out. I've taken a look at it. It's really fantastic and I'll put a link to it in the shownotes but it's called Stillman Wellness.
Now, he also offers telemedicine. He also offers annual plans in his medical program. But, one very, very interesting program that he just launched is called the HTMA, the HTMA analysis. And, that gives six lessons on thyroid, adrenals, depression, heart disease, weight loss, blood sugar, and allows you to become well-versed and able to coach and learn more about these missing pieces of health that a lot of people don't know about. So, that one's called the Stillman Wellness. I don't know if it's called the Stillman Wellness Institute or just Stillman Wellness.
Those are a handful of the programs that I would recommend if I were going to–that's what I would look for. If I was going to work with a health coach or a personal trainer, I'd want to see, hey, have they gone through the CHEK Institute or the Kresser Institute or the Stillman Institute or Wild Health or have they gone through IIN or the College of Naturopathic Medicine. So, think beyond just like an ACE Personal training certification or a weekend again open book personal training certification. The ones I've listed for you I think are the best of the best when it comes to being a health coach who really is able to practice or have a really good well-informed practice. So, I hope that's helpful.
So, Dan asks, “Is it okay to listen to podcasts, et cetera, in the sauna on Bluetooth earphones or is it still bad for health?”
Well, this is pretty interesting. I'm actually asked a lot about why I always have those geeky wires coming out of my head instead of wearing say earbuds or ear pods or whatever you call them. And, I'm going to start off by telling you that the research is not ironclad when it comes to the EMF risks of wireless headphones. And, I'll get to the whole sauna effect here shortly, but there have been concerns. As a matter of fact in 2015, this kind of set off some controversy about Bluetooth devices. There's a group of scientists that signed this position that expressed serious concern about the potential health risks what are called non-ionizing electromagnetic fields or EMF technology. They're concerned about things like cancer, for example. Now, understand that all Bluetooth devices use EMF technology. The question is how much of a risk do they present?
Well, Bluetooth just creates wireless connections as you probably know between two different technologies. They use short-range radio frequency to connect devices within a certain distance from each other. Now, Bluetooth devices are wireless so they also utilize what's called radio frequency radiation, RF radiation. That type of radiation falls into the category of what is called electromagnetic radiation or EMR, travels in waves using electric and magnetic fields. Now, RF radiation can occur from cell phones, from AM and FM radio, and from televisions as well. Here's what to note though, Bluetooth devices give off significantly less radiation than cell phones. Now, radiation exists as non-ionizing or ionizing radiation. Non-ionizing radiation has the energy to move atoms around but it can't remove electrons from those atoms. Ionizing radiation has the power to do both.
Now, non-ionizing radiation has less energy and it makes it less likely to harm your health, again, because it's not affecting electrons, just atoms. And, Bluetooth technology is a type of non-ionizing radiation. And, research has not conclusively linked that RF radiation, that non-ionizing radiation with adverse health effects that I am aware of. There's some anecdotal studies where people will do a live red blood cell analysis and find blood cell clumping or they'll do an EEG brain scan and find higher amounts of beta brain waves when they have their ear pods in versus when they don't. And so, there's anecdotal evidence but no robust clinical research that I found behind the risks of Bluetooth wireless technology.
Now, this is interesting because if you look at Bluetooth devices, they are very low-powered. They're typically about 2.5 megawatts. That's way less than the power of a mobile phone. That's 100 times less than the maximum power of a mobile phone. So, we're talking about much, much less non-ionizing radiation than you get from a phone and extremely low power output far below the established limits for what would be considered to be something deleterious to health. Nonetheless, you can certainly find articles and anecdotes out there that suggest there is evidence that indicates potential concerns for human health and development from all technologies that operate at radio frequencies. One of the guys who is big in this movement who's very controversial is Jerry Phillips who's a professor of biochemistry at the University of Colorado. And, his concern is that AirPods and their placement in the ear canal exposes tissues in the head to relatively high levels of radio-frequency radiation. And he, I believe, is part of the roughly 250 researchers from more than 40 countries who signed a petition, like I mentioned, back in 2015 to the United Nations and the World Health Organization expressing serious concern about non-ionizing electromagnetic fields, which is the kind of radiation emitted by wireless technologies including Bluetooth technology.
So, here's the thing. I'm cautious but I haven't really seen any bodies in the streets so to speak when it comes to the extremely low frequency of Bluetooth radiation. For me, the wired headset and especially the air tube headsets which only cause the sound to travel in tubes not even wires up through the ears work well enough to where it's kind of, well, I don't know, but I'm going to play it safe. Now, the question here though is about whether these things could potentially be safe but be less safe in a situation in which the body is heated, in which the tissues are heated. And, this is very interesting because the heating effects of EMFs are partially responsible for some of the negative impact on say sperm. So, if you're in a really hot environment and then you added additional RF on top of that from a cell phone in your pocket while walking in the summer, you do more damage to your sperm. And, that has been shown to be extremely impacted by radio frequencies and non-ionizing radiation compared to if you're in a cooling environment. Okay. So, there is kind of a thermal heating effect that's aggravated by the presence of radio frequencies.
But, there's also a few other things to think about because I talked with a couple people about this. Nicolas Pineault who wrote the fantastic book, “The Non-Tinfoil Hot Guide to EMFs,” great title, and then Brian Hoyer, the guy who's doing the EMF analysis on my phone who runs the website Shielded Healing who is kind of like my personal EMF consultant. Now, here's one thing that in particular Brian explained to me. Sauna therapy activates what are called heat shock proteins and those aid in cellular repair and protein maintenance. It's one of the reasons that sauna therapy is good for you through the activation of these heat shock proteins.
Now, the other things that can happen when you are exposed to EMFs or radio frequencies is a slight increase in the production of reactive oxygen species called hydroxyl and carbonyl radicals. Also, when you look at EMF stressors, not necessarily Bluetooth but EMF in general, and this is why getting a low EMF sauna is important is your mitochondria are susceptible to oxidative damage because they have these lipid-rich membranes, and the EMS can actually disrupt some of those lipid-rich membranes and cause damage to some of the fats. So, heat shock proteins can play a role in protecting the mitochondria. And, that means that if you're in the sauna, you could be, through the production of heat shock proteins, making yourself a little bit more resilient to the effects of EMFs in other scenarios.
But, if you look at putting sauna-induced heat stress together with oxidative stress and what's called nitrosative stress from all types of EMFs while in the heat of the sauna, you could potentially be creating a state of excess stress, basically excess heat combined with the presence of EMFs. And, that thermal effect of the EMFs combined with the fact that you're creating a lot of oxidative stress in general with the sauna would dictate that while a sauna and the heat shock proteins that it produces would theoretically allow you to better withstand the effects of EMF, once you're out of the sauna, by combining EMF and possibly even the low-intensity radio frequency from a Bluetooth while you're in the sauna, you might be contributing more to the type of oxidative stress that can occur when you're in the sauna, especially when you're also in red lights in the sauna, which as I talked about in podcast number 460 can create a state of a lot of free radicals. That's not necessarily bad, it's just you need to consider piling stress on top of stress. And, that's why a truly low EMF infrared sauna is important. I use one made by Clearlight, SaunaSpace has one, Sunlighten has one. But, the fact is any form of EMF can affect your health by flooding your brain and heart cells with calcium. It can basically cause biological dysfunction by increasing the electrical charge inside the cell, which is supposed be at a slightly negative potential.
And, we've seen these biological effects that magnetic fields as low as 2 to 3 milligauss and at electric fields as low as 300-volt meters. So, inside a sauna, there are many, many saunas that do not adhere to those type of regulations. And so, you can get excess oxidative damage if you're not inside a truly low EMF infrared sauna. The question remains up in the air about how much the use of Bluetooth in a sauna would contribute to that, but I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt not only am I careful but I can tell you that the higher intensity radio frequencies produced by your phone in the sauna dictates that it would be bad news bears to actually drag your phone into the sauna and not have it in airplane mode. I do not have my sauna ever not in airplane mode if I'm in a heated environment or if I'm in the sauna because the oxidative stress and the calcium influx from the phone, from the EMFs produced by the phone, will be even worse in that scenario. And, even worse if you're not in a low EMF sauna, if you're using one of these infrared saunas.
So, long story short, if you want to play it safe, I would not use the Bluetooth headsets but it's kind of up to you because the research doesn't say for sure. I will include a study in the shownotes at BenGreenfieldLife.com/461 that talks about many of these other mechanisms and interplay between EMFs and the cells should you want to dive in more deeply than the brief amount of time that I was able to do that question justice. So, hopefully, that helps.
Alright, we're going to keep going here. Wade says, “Hey, Ben, I can't afford the ARX machine, what should I use instead?”
So, just you guys know, the ARX machine is the single set-to-failure machine that I have out in my garage. It walks me through one single two-ish minute set to failure for the squat, for the chest press, for the deadlift, for the pull-down, for the overhead press, and for the row. And, when I say single set to failure, I mean by the last rep you're pretty much balls to the wall. There's no way you could do another rep. Prior to getting one of these admittedly pretty expensive ARX machines that uses artificial intelligence to calculate your power, your force, adjust it as it goes and produce a graph on the screen that walks you through the whole set, I would use Nautilus machines or other exercise machines in a gym or health club because moving a weight that slowly through an extremely slow and controlled 15 to 30 seconds up, 15 to 30 seconds down range of motion is a lot more predictable, simple, still difficult but simple conceptually to pull off when you're walking around the gym using say the chest press machine at the gym, the pull-down machine, overhead press machine, seated row machine, leg press machine. And, if they have one some kind of a deadlifting apparatus, you could even use a Smith machine.
But, a lot of people don't have six Nautilus machines at their house. Most people who have the money to have six Nautilus machines at their house would probably just get an ARX and have one machine to do it all. However, I have some clients who don't have an ARX and don't have Nautilus machines at their house and I will have them do this workout with bands like the X3 Bar band setup is really good or any really hefty elastic band setup in which you're moving the bands very slowly through a range of motion. And, it's actually a little bit of a different feel with bands because they kind of maintain that constant tension throughout the motion.
Another way to do this is with free weights. There's no reason that you can't do, for example, a very slow dumbbell suitcase deadlift or barbell deadlift, very slow push-up or bench chest press with dumbbells, very slow pull-up or pull down if you happen to have some kind of thing to pull down with in your home gym, very slow goblet squat or back barbell squat, or if you're unable to squat, very slow right leg lunge and left leg lunge loaded or unloaded, a very slow shoulder press using a sandbag or a barbell or a couple of dumbbells or again even a band, and then a very slow seated row or very slow one arm dumbbell row. You can totally do any of those single sets to failure. Most people just don't go slow enough, don't go hard enough, and don't completely gas themselves out. One tip I can give you is if you still have some gas in the tank at let's say the end of, I don't know, eight reps in a set but you just can't do one more super slow, go to the end range of motion and just kind of bounce and move through micro motions until you completely exhaust that muscle, then move on to the next exercise.
And so, that's a way you can do super slow training, which is highly effective. You even get a really, really good increase in peripheral blood pressure which can induce a cardiovascular training effect. Entire book about this concept and the science behind super slow training called “Body By Science” by Dr. Doug McGuff. But no, you do not need an ARX machine to do it. I have one. I know it's expensive it. It is a really, really cool way to do super slow training because it's a two-horsepower engine and nobody I know of is stronger than two horses. So, there's no way I can max out the thing, especially little old me. But anyways, you don't have to have an ARX machine to do it. And frankly, a lot of times if I'm traveling at the average hotel gym, I can hunt down a chest press machine, seated row, shoulder press machine, pull down or pull up, leg press machine, and something I can deadlift with and I'm fine. Sometimes I skip the deadlift just because occasionally lifting super, super slow deadlifts, the only way to do it is to lift up super, super slow and then skip the eccentric phase by dropping the weights, picking them up, and then doing the very, very slow pick up again because otherwise setting a deadlift weight down that slowly at a high enough load can be really iffy for the low back, that eccentric loading combined with the hip flexor shortening. So, just be careful with this super slow deadlift if you're not using some kind of a machine like the ARX to do it. But, in most cases, you can do super slow training without the ARX. So, great question.
Alright, next question. The person doesn't give their name but they say, “What's your recommended setup for a treadmill desk?”
I love this question. So, I'll just share with you right now what I use because it's pretty sick. I use this treadmill called a Walkolution. So, I interviewed this guy way back in the day. He was this Swiss inventor who had spent a bunch of time out in Korea and he would walk around the Korean rice paddy fields and come back from a trip and find that his feet were strong and his knee pain was gone and his hip pain had disappeared. And so, he invented these walking shoes called Kybun, which used the same material sensation, this soft cushiony sensation that he was getting out in those rice paddy fields and then he developed a standing desk mat that used that same stuff.
Now, I'm all about strengthening the feet. Look, I walk a ton of places barefoot. I use the Peluva walking shoes by Mark Sisson. I'll use Minimalist Shoes. I don't use a lot of cushioning most of the day, but I really grew to like these shoes and this standing desk mat that this Swiss inventor showed me. Because again, I'm getting my feet strong at other times during the day. I don't have to beat up my feet all day long, but then six months ago, I found out that this dude has consulted with a company called Walkolution to produce a treadmill that has the same walking comfort surface on the actual treadmill. So, not only is it whisper quiet, so you're completely undisturbed during video conferences and phone calls and concentrated work but they have what are called alternating compression zones built into the treadmill. You got to see a picture of it. I'll link to it in the shownotes.
So, it feels like you're strolling on natural terrain, it stretches and cushions the feet the entire time that you're walking. So, you finish walking and every single step is a freaking foot massage. They're called impulse active compression zones. This treadmill is right beside me. I wish I was walking out right now I'm talking to you, but what it does, this feature, is it stimulates and trains the deep muscles and proprioception in the feet that are often caused by walking on hard surfaces or in the improper shoes. And, you also get this rebounding effect off of the treadmill that ultimately causes even though it's not strengthening your feet you, your hips get stronger, your calves get stronger, your hamstrings get stronger and your feet just get spread and nice and supple and mobile. And then, if you're strengthening your feet at other times during the day by walking barefoot or using barefoot walking shoes or working out in the gym, et cetera, I think it's the best of both worlds. This treadmill is amazing. I am on it for at least 8,000 steps a day now. It's called the Walkolution Soft Treadmill by Wanderlust. They also have a treadmill desk that comes along with it. So, if I was just going to tell you done for you treadmill solution, just do that. It's amazing. And again, it's made by this company called Kybun, K-Y-B-U-N. And, I think Woodway acquired the technology and the company. I'll link to the exact treadmill in the shownotes. And so, you get that, it comes with a desk and you're good to go.
Now, it's still important to, and I learned a lot about this from Kelly Starrett's book, “Deskbound,” to have proper desk biomechanics. I used to get horrific elbow pain all the time working at my desk until I realized my elbows were not at 90 degrees, the desk was too far away from me and the monitor was at the improper eye height. So, it is important that you set up the proper height even for a treadmill workstation. So, what does that mean? Well, it means your chest should be open, your shoulders back, so the monitor should not be super close to you. Your wrist should be pronated, meaning not turned down too much if you actually are on a keyboard with the upper arms as close to the body as possible. That's why I like the fact that this treadmill I just mentioned to you, the Walkolution, it actually has the desk built into the treadmill so your computer can be super close to you with your wrists and your elbow supported while you're on the treadmill. The front of the keyboard is supposed to be higher than the back of the keyboard by about 30 degrees.
So, if you're using a laptop, for example, I like the idea of having an external keyboard that allows the keyboard to be ergonomic and propped up just a little bit. The mouse or the trackball should be super close to your body so you're not getting pain on the inside of the elbow by constantly reaching for your mouse. And then, your actual posture should be such that the hip bend is at 90 degrees if you're sitting or just straight up and down with the shoulders over the hip joints over the ankle joints if you're standing or walking. And, the wrists if working, and the elbows if working should be at a 90-degree angle at the elbow and as close as possible to 180 degrees at the wrist or slightly more, slightly more open.
And, there's actually a great website called workwhilewalking.com. Workwhilewalking.com has some fantastic resources when it comes to the ergonomics of your workstation and the ergonomics of your treadmill desk setup. I'm adjusting my body if you're watching the video version of this podcast because all of a sudden, I'm self-conscious. When I'm standing, I use this stool, by the way, it's called a Focal upright stool. Check out that name. Yeah, Focal upright stool, and it allows me to just lean against this stool. And then, my seated workstation up on my upstairs office is called an Anthros chair, which is freaking Tesla, a back supporting office chairs.
So, my setup is I've got the stool with the standing mat at my standing workstation. That's what I'm at right now. Beside me is the Walkolotion treadmill and then upstairs is the Anthros chair. And, that's kind of my whole setup for workplace ergonomics. So hopefully, that's helpful. And, anybody's listening in who wants the creme de la creme of treadmills, you have to try this one I was just talking about. It's pretty amazing. So, I will put a link to it in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/461.
Alright. Looks like we've got one more question. This is a good one. What are your options for male, what options you recommend for a male with low testosterone still trying to have kids? I tried Clomid and Anastrazole for a long time but it's not working.
Well, it is true that even though testosterone replacement therapy can help a man feel really great, better energy, better sleep, better libido, better muscle mass, et cetera, there are some issues with testosterone replacement therapy when it comes to fertility. A lot of people think if they're trying to have a baby and they can't have one that low testosterone levels are to blame, but that's not necessarily the case. Some people, because of low testosterone levels, have lower sperm production and low fertility. But, testosterone is just one of the hormones that stimulates sperm production. And, there are some other hormones that play an important, arguably a more important role than testosterone when it comes to fertility.
Now, when you get on testosterone replacement therapy whether it's a pill or an injection or pellets or a cream or anything else, one of the most common side effects is a decreased sperm count. And, that's because, well think about how the body makes sperm, okay, it's a complicated collection of hormones that trigger sperm production. Ordinarily, if your body detects that your testosterone levels are low, it will send a signal to your pituitary gland. That will prompt the production of luteinizing hormone, LH. You may have seen on a blood test before and follicle-stimulating hormone, FSH. And, that process triggers the testes to begin producing sperm. And, when your brain registers an influx of testosterone from exogenous TRT, testosterone replacement therapy treatment, that will disrupt the standard sperm production process because your body doesn't register low T levels, the pituitary gland doesn't produce the necessary hormones like FH and LSH so your sperm production decreases, meaning that TRT if not done properly, meaning in a way that would keep luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone elevated could have a pretty significant long-term and sometimes permanent effect on fertility.
Now, if you're hearing this and you're freaking out because you've been on TRT and you still want to have kids, yes, you can wean yourself off of it and there's one way to do that, I'll mention here briefly that can help. Some doctors will combine testosterone with something called hCG, human choriniotic, how do you pronounce it? Human chorionic gonadotropin, I think it is, hCG. And, that can help to protect your fertility. Other people were quiet cryo preserve and freeze their sperm prior to getting on TRT so that later on they can use that same sperm when they're ready to start a family. That can also work. Some doctors will prescribe what's called clomiphene or Clomid instead of TRT, which as I'll explain shortly, I'm not a big fan of. And then, some guys will be on TRT but they'll just be drinking alcohol, not sleeping well, under a lot of stress, in the sauna or the hot tub all the time, heating up the boys and they're still fertile because they're being well-managed but there's just some other lifestyle factors that need to change.
But, in my opinion, at this point, I think that if you still want to start a family and stay fertile and you want to increase testosterone, you don't have to get untraditional testosterone replacement therapy. Now, why do I say that? Because if you look at what's called hypogonadism and this would be one of the situations that would affect the signal of the testicles, there's a couple things to think about. You have primary hypogonadism and secondary hypogonadism. And, primary hypogonadism, your hypothalamus and your pituitary function are normal so the glands are successfully signaling to the testicles to produce testosterone but the testicles are failing to make testosterone. Okay, that's primary testicular failure. And, in a secondary hypogonadism is the reverse situation. You have normal testicles that should be capable of producing testosterone but the hypothalamus and the pituitary are not sending the signal to increase testosterone production. You'll sometimes see that, for example, in guys who have had a head injury or who are under a lot of stress. So, most guys with low testosterone actually suffer from secondary hypogonadism. Their testicles can make testosterone, but the brain signal is enough to increase testosterone.
Now, if you have primary hypogonadism, then it is true that testosterone replacement therapy where you supply the body with exogenous testosterone is often your only option. But, in secondary hypogonadism, taking testosterone might not be the best idea. Now, the reason for that is because of an enzyme called aromatase. Okay, when aromatase levels are present, a significant amount of the extra testosterone that you get from testosterone replacement therapy gets converted into estradiol, a form of estrogen. And, when surplus estradiol acts on estrogen receptors in your hypothalamus and your pituitary glands, that sends a signal to your body to produce less of the luteinizing hormone and less of the follicle-stimulating hormone that would be necessary for fertility. So basically, that causes you to suffer quite a bit if you want to actually have babies because that enzyme causes an excess of what's called estradiol or E2, and that impacts fertility.
Now, that's where a solution of something that I think is better than Clomid comes in. It's called a selective estrogen receptor modulator, SERM. So, what a selective estrogen receptor modulator does is it binds to that estrogen receptor. But, rather than blocking all of the estrogens, it actually allows for the E2 to not be bound to the receptor that will cause the decrease in LH and FSH. So, I'll explain this a little more thoroughly. So, you're blocking estrogen at the receptor, so the aromatization of excess testosterone to estradiol isn't going to matter because estradiol isn't able to have an effect on the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland. So, the idea here is that with an SERM, you're able to increase testosterone without affecting fertility.
Now, probably the most popular SERM out there for, this is called enclomiphene. Okay. You may have heard of clomiphene before, which is more popularly known as Clomid. Now, Clomid is both an agonist and an antagonist of estrogen. It's often used to treat infertility in women. So, it's partly estrogenic and it's partly anti-estrogenic because it has a diametrically opposed effect on the estrogen receptor. Now, what enclomiphene is, it's the part of Clomid that would be the estrogen antagonist. So, rather than producing a bunch of estrogens just blocking the activity of E2 that will cause the drop in fertility to occur. So, often when men are given Clomid to increase their fertility, they do get a nice bump in testosterone from the enclomiphene that's in Clomid, but the problem is that they get a whole bunch of estrogen produced from the estrogen part of Clomid. So, what enclomiphene is is it's taking out the excess estrogen that will cause a man to have these feminizing side effects and man boobs and getting weepy during chick flicks and stuff and instead just boost testosterone without producing the drop in FH and LSH. And, they've done studies on this and shown that when guys get on enclomiphene, they can see an increase in total testosterone but they have normal LH and FSH levels and arguably better fertility.
So, there's two ways to go about this. If you have really, really, really low testosterone, severe hypogonadism, some people get on testosterone plus enclomiphene. If your testosterone levels are just a little bit low but you want to get them up a little bit while still maintaining fertility, you can often get enclomiphene alone. It would just be an oral dose that you take typical one or two times a day.
So, I realize it's a long explanation, but I would say if you want to have babies and you want to increase your testosterone, you're going to either have to freeze your sperm then get on TRT or go for something like enclomiphene instead of TRT. So, that's what I would recommend rather than the Clomid and Anastrazole that you're doing right now. I would recommend something like enclomiphene with a small dose of testosterone or starting off just enclomiphene by itself. That's what I would try. I'm not a doctor. I don't need to misconstrue this as medical advice, but that's what I would think about doing if I were you.
So man, I think we are just about done with today's podcast, but I have to one more time give a big shout out to the brand new Ben Greenfield Life Masterclass. Again, it is me walking you through everything you would need to do for your ideal routine, your ideal day. You're maximizing six key areas and optimizing those time, environment, health, soul, relationships and legacy. And, you can find it all at BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass. Not only that I'm doing a free challenge leading up to the Masterclass that even if you don't want to do the Masterclass, you'll spend six days with me every morning with live Q&A. I've never done anything like that, but it's leading up to the kickoff of the Masterclass. And again, you don't have to get the Masterclass, you can just go through the six-day free live Q&A with me where I teach you everything about creating your perfect day and your ideal routine. I will link to that in the shownotes and I will link to the Masterclass as well in the shownotes. So, the shownotes are at BenGreenfieldLife.com/461. The Masterclass is at BenGreenfieldLife.com/Masterclass. I'm super grateful that you stuck it out with me through this episode. I hope you learned a little bit. And again, until next time, I'm Ben Greenfield signing out. Have an amazing week.
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.
In compliance with the FTC guidelines, please assume the following about links and posts on this site. Most of the links going to products are often affiliate links of which I receive a small commission from sales of certain items, but the price is the same for you and sometimes I even get to share a unique and somewhat significant discount with you.
In some cases, I might also be an investor in a company I mentioned. I'm the founder, for example, of Kion LLC, the makers of Kion-branded supplements and products which I talk about quite a bit. Regardless of that relationship, if I post or talk about an affiliate link to a product, it is indeed something I personally use, support, and with full authenticity and transparency recommend in good conscience. I personally vet each and every product that I talk about.
My first priority is providing valuable information and resources to you that help you positively optimize your mind, body, and spirit. And, I'll only ever link to products or resources, affiliate or otherwise that fit within this purpose. So, there's your fancy legal disclaimer.
CTA for MasterClass:
Masterclass talking points:
- Enrollment is now open for my brand new Ben Greenfield Life Masterclass, a 6-week course that breaks down every aspect of your life and provides you with a life-practice map to help you master all six major areas.
- I share my personal experiences, expertise, and proven strategies that have helped superstar athletes, mega-successful entrepreneurs, Hollywood actors, and thousands of individuals optimize their time, space, mind, body, spirit, career, relationships, and capital with my proven life design strategy.
- More Masterclass talking points are in the bottom half of this doc (https://bengreenfieldlife.com/lifeoptimizationchallenge link error 404)
Have a question you'd like Ben to answer on the podcast?
Before asking your question, search in the upper right-hand corner of this website for the keywords associated with your question. Many of the questions we receive have already been answered here at Ben Greenfield Life!
- Spicy stuff for fat loss? Pass the hot sauce please: In this meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials conducted in adults with overweight/obesity, supplementation with chili peppers, capsaicin, or capsinoids caused reductions in body mass index, body weight, and waist circumference: The effects of capsaicin intake on weight loss among overweight and obese subjects: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials – also seems to help with performance! Effects of different phenylcapsaicin doses on resistance training performance, muscle damage, protein breakdown, metabolic response, ratings of perceived exertion, and recovery: a randomized, triple-blinded, placebo-controlled, crossover trial…6:51
- Shoutout to Ben's hot sauce go-to, Joey's Hot Sauce (use code BEN20 to save 20%)
- This study: New Obesity Tool? Key may lie in receptor protein, brown fat cells show that capsaicin can mimic or enhance the effect of cold temperature to activate energy-burning brown fat cells and increase metabolism
- Diets often stop working due to adaptive thermogenesis
- The body reacts to lower calorie intake by reducing the amount of energy the body burns
- Studies have shown that capsaicin intake pre-workout:
- Favorably influenced squat performance
- Decreased rating of perceived exertion
- Decreased muscle damage
- Phenyl capsaicin is an alternative if you are sensitive to spice
- Capsaicin alternative: Grains of Paradise
- Contains paradoxine which increases thermogenesis, similar to capsaicin
- Penis optimization research – super interesting that my friend and former podcast guest Dr. Judson Brandeis has been able to safely and effectively grow healthy men’s penises almost an inch in length, a half an inch in girth, and significantly improve erectile function. Geez: Increasing Penile Length and Girth in Healthy Men Using a Novel Protocol:
The P-Long Study…15:22
- Yet another surprising benefit of daily “micro workouts”: reduced cancer risk – Vigorous Intermittent Lifestyle Physical Activity and Cancer Incidence Among Nonexercising Adults…20:30
- VILPAs (Vigorous Intermittent Lifestyle Physical Activity)
- For every 30 minutes of work (unless recording a podcast), Ben does a “micro workout”
- Blood Glucose Disposal Agents
- Amie Hornaman
- Life Extension Thermo Weight Control
- Podcast with Dr. Harry Adelson and Dr. Amy Killen:
- Boundless by Ben Greenfield
- Workout snacks:
Want to submit your question for Ben to answer on the podcast? Submit here or send a direct message on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. To make it easy to spot, preface your question with “Q&A Podcast Question: (ask question)” and keep it concise, please.
Q: Anil asks: Love the stuff you put out, and I practice what is possible within limits here in beautiful Kathmandu. My question is, since I want to speak about health, nutrition, and well-being in general what is a good course (online or not) to get that validation?…20:05
- Many health coaching courses require an undergraduate or graduate degree in Exercise Science or Nutrition Science
- Ben's education consists of:
- Undergraduate degree in Exercise Science
- Masters in Exercise Science from the University of Idaho
- Emphasis in biomechanics, nutrition, and pharmacology
- NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association) Personal Training Certification
- CISSN Certification (Certified Sports Nutritionist from the ISSN)
- Ben's education and certification benefits him
- Allowed him to work as a personal trainer
- Protected him from potential liabilities
- Ben's education consists of:
- A four- or five-year degree program isn't necessary to become a health coach or personal trainer
- There are some very good health coach certification programs on the market
- Ben recommends these health coach certification programs:
- The Institute for Integrative Nutrition (INN)
- Been around for 30 years
- Many different coaching programs
- Great health coach certification training program
- Can be done online
- The College of Naturopathic Medicine (CNM)
- Based in the UK
- Online certifications are available
- Teaches holistic medicine as well as fitness, health, business and marketing practices, etc
- The Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM)
- Medical based program
- Functional Medical Health Coach Certification
- Wild Health
- The podcast episode with Matt Dawson of Wild Health:
- Wild Health has a certification training program (use code BEN20 for 20% off) that teaches you how to analyze DNA, understand epigenetics, read blood work reports, etc.
- CHEK Academy
- Well-rounded, holistic training program
- The podcast episodes with Paul Chek:
- Kresser Institute
- Leland Stillman: Stillman Wellness
- Fundamentals of Wellness Course (use code BEN to save 10% off courses with coaching)
- Coaching Program (use code FIFTY to get a 50% discount off courses)
- The podcast episodes with Dr. Leland Stillman:
- Ben's Masterclass and The Ben Greenfield Life Coaching Certification Program. (link not working)
- The Institute for Integrative Nutrition (INN)
Q: Dan asks: Is it OK to listen to podcasts etc. in the sauna on Bluetooth earphones or is it still bad for health?…40:10
- This study talks about many of these mechanisms and interplay: Signaling and Damaging Functions of Free Radicals in Aging—Free Radical Theory, Hormesis, and TOR
- All Bluetooth devices use EMF technology and RF (Radiofrequency) radiation
- Bluetooth devices give off less radiation than cell phones
- Non-ionizing radiation
- Less energy
- Bluetooth devices give off less radiation than cell phones
- Research has not yet associated RF radiation from Bluetooth with adverse health effects
- There has been some anecdotal evidence
- Jerry Phillips, professor of biochemistry at the University of Colorado is concerned that Airpods emit harmful non-ionizing radiation to the head
- EMF exposure in combination with heat can cause damage to sperm
- E.g., walking on a hot day with your cell phone in your pocket
- The Non-Tinfoil Guide to EMFs: How to Fix Our Stupid Use of Technology by Nicolas Pineault
- Ben's EMF go-to guy, Brian Hoyer of Shielded Healing (use code BEN to get $100 off of any assessment listed under our services)
- Sauna therapy activates heat-shock proteins
- Aids in cellular repair
- EMF exposure can increase production of reactive oxygen species (ROS)
- Mitochondria are susceptible to oxidative damage
- Podcasts with Brian Hoyer:
- Hunting Down EMF In Your Office, Bedroom, Gym & Beyond: Is Your Home’s “Dirty Electricity” Wrecking Your Sleep, Your Recovery, Your Health & More? The Official Ben Greenfield & Brian Hoyer Low-EMF Home How-To.
- The Intriguing Science Of Building Biology (Along With A Complete Analysis & Surprising Results From Ben Greenfield’s So-Called “Biohacked Home”)
- Sauna therapy activates heat-shock proteins
- Important to use only low EMF saunas
- Ben always keeps his cellphone in airplane mode in while in the sauna or a heated environment
Q: Wade asks: Hey Ben! I can’t afford the ARX machine, so is there another way to do a simple set to failure?…49:50
- Nautilus workout systems at home or in the gym
- X3® Bar Workout with bands
- Kybun shoes
- Free weights also work well
- Be careful with the deadlift – Ben often skips this exercise if he's traveling and using free weights
- Ben's tip if you still have some “gas in the tank” at the end of 8 reps in a set, but can't do one more slow:
- Go to the end range of motion
- “Bounce” and move through micro motions to completely exhaust the muscle
- Body by Science by John Little and Doug McGuff
Q: What's your recommended setup for a treadmill desk?…54:00
- Ben's treadmill: a Walkolution Kybun Treadmill Desk
- The podcast episode with founder, Karl Müller:
- Karl Müller noticed that his knee pain disappeared after walking around Korean rice paddy fields
- Walkolution Kybun Treadmill Desk features:
- Whisper quiet
- Alternating compression zones
- Mimics natural terrain
- Stretches and cushions the feet
- Stimulates and trains deep muscles and proprioception
- Rebound effect that strengthens hips, calves, and hamstrings
- Deskbound: Standing Up to a Sitting World by Glen Cordoza, Juliet Starrett, and Kelly Starrett
- Important to have good desk biomechanics
- Proper desk and monitor height
- Elbows at 90 degrees
- Chest open, shoulders back
- Pronated wrists
- Arms close to one another
- Ergonomic keyboard
- Mouse close to the body
- Good seated or standing posture
- Important to have good desk biomechanics
- The website: workwhilewalking.com
- Focal upright stool
- Anthros chair
Q: What options do you recommend for males with low testosterone who are trying to have kids? I tried Clomid and Anastrazole for a long time but they're not working…1:00:33
- Testosterone replacement therapy can help men feel better overall, though can decrease sperm count
- If testosterone levels are low, the body naturally increases production of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
- Triggers testes to produce more sperm
- When your brain detects an increase in testosterone from TRT (testosterone replacement therapy), sperm production process is disrupted
- If testosterone levels are low, the body naturally increases production of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
- Podcast with Adam Lamb:
- There are some workarounds to help with fertility:
- Some doctors combine TRT with hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) treatment
- You can try sperm banking prior to TRT
- Avoid excessive alcohol and heat from sauna or hot tub overuse
- Traditional TRT isn't necessary, in Ben's opinion
- Primary hypogonadism
- Rarer than secondary hypogonadism
- Hypothalamus and pituitary gland function is normal
- Successfully signaling for testosterone production
- Testes failing to produce testosterone (primary testicular failure)
- TRT is often the only option
- Secondary hypogonadism
- More common than primary hypogonadism
- Testes are able to produce testosterone
- Hypothalamus and pituitary gland are not sending the signal
- TRT may not be a good idea due to the enzyme aromatase
- Causes an excess of estradiol (E2) which impacts fertility
- Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) are a better option than Clomid
- Causes E2 to not be bound to the receptor that causes the decrease in LH and FSH
- Most popular SERM is Enclomiphene
- Removes excess estrogen
- Primary hypogonadism
- Ben recommends Enclomiphene with a small dose of Testosterone, or Enclomiphene by itself
Join me for the Disrupt 2023 Event in Atlanta, Georgia, between September 27th – September 30th. 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 25th – 29th, 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!
Hiya: Get your kids the full-body nourishment they need to grow into healthy adults. We've worked out a special deal with Hiya for their best-selling children's vitamin. Receive 50% off your first order. To claim this deal you must go to hiyahealth.com/BEN. This deal is not available on their regular website.
House of Macadamias: For a very limited time, we’re gifting a free box of Namibian Sea Salted Macadamia Nuts worth $35 when you visit houseofmacadamias.com/ben plus 20% off your entire order with code BEN.
Anthros: Try Anthros risk-free – return at no cost if it's not the most comfortable posture-improving, performance-enhancing chair you have ever owned. Receive $200 off using the link www.anthros.com/ben.
Ben Greenfield Coaching – Elite Plan: It's time to transform your health and fitness journey with the new Elite Plan from Ben Greenfield Coaching. To learn more and join the elite ranks of high achievers who have successfully turned their knowledge into lasting transformation, visit our website at www.bengreenfieldcoaching.com/elite.