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Decoding The Science Behind The Best Tasting Bone Broth On The Face Of The Planet.

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There’s much more to bone broth than meets the eye.

Take the bones for example. Killer bones make killer bone broth, but not all bones are created equal. Knuckle, patella, femur, and feet bones actually make the best broth, because these bones have been proven to contain the highest concentration of white and red stem-cell marrow, as well as the highest levels of collagen – one of the major benefits of drinking bone broth.

The ingredients matter too. For example, you can achieve one of the most nourishing bone broths on the face of the planet when you combine marrow bones like those listed above (from pasture raised, grass-fed cows) with organic carrots, organic onions, organic celery, organic bay leaves, organic parsley, apple cider vinegar, a pinch of black peppercorn, sea salt, thyme and rosemary extract.

Bone broth packaging matters too. Most bone broth companies aren’t USDA approved and require their bone broth to be frozen. This makes shipping a hassle (not to mention expensive!) makes the bone broth hard to store, and requires the heavy addition of preservatives, nasty additives and extra sodium or worse yet, packaging that is chock full of pathogens and germs.

But this kind of information flies under the radar, so in today’s podcast, my guest Justin Mares and I pull back the curtain on all things bone broth.  Justin is the founder of Kettle & Fire bone broth, the first ever fresh, never frozen organic bone broth company, and during our discussion, you’ll discover:

-Why bone broth is supposed to form a gelatin when it’s in your fridge, and why you shouldn’t eat it if it doesn’t “gel”…[9:52]

-Whether there’s any actual research on bone broth, or just on the individual components of it, like glycine or glucosamine or collagen…[14:50]

-Which is the best type of broth: cow, chicken or fish…[22:37]

What the best kind of bones are for bone broth[29:45]

-The difference between red-cell marrow and white-cell marrow, and which you should consume…[31:45]

-Why Kettle & Fire adds to their bone broth 100% grass-fed cows, organic carrots, organic celery, organic onions, organic bay leaves, organic apple cider vinegar, and reverse osmosis purified water…[34:10]

-The best temperature for bone broth to keep nutrients from degrading…[36:50]

-How can you actually get a packaged and shipped bone broth sent to your house without having a bunch of preservatives and artificial crap in it…[39:18]

-Why you should stay far away from any grocery store bone broths[43:00]

-How bone broth can be used to lose weight, stay in ketosis, heal a leaky gut, fix constipation, and much more…[46:55]

Resources from this episode:

Kettle & Fire Bone Broth (that link gets you $10 off any order, and additional discounts if you add more bone broth cartons to your cart).

The study Justin mentioned about glycine attenuating the insulin spike that comes with glucose ingestion.

Ben’s bark tea recipe

Do you have questions, thoughts or feedback for Justin or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply!

Does A “God Pill” Exist?

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Veins on both biceps bulging like pythons, the ripped kid in the t-shirt extended one arm towards me. He opened his clenched fist to reveal a tiny black ziplock bag. He grinned, displaying a perfect set of ivory white teeth and nodded, “Go ahead. Try it!”

I stepped back and raised an eyebrow. This guy had just finished completely destroying my “REALFit” test score at the ever-popular PaleoFX conference. The conference, a global gathering of biohackers, foodies, physicians, exercise freaks and bacon-and-egg-infused-coffee chugging Crossfitters, features the annual REALFit test to discover the fittest person alive. The fittest person alive at their conference, that is.

Anyways, I thought I had achieved a pretty respectable score on a host of tests including a forearm-destroying two minute maximum pull-ups test, deadlifting body weight as many times as possible in two minutes test (try that one sometime and just try to beat at least sixty, I dare you),  a shuttle run, a medicine ball hurl, a vertical leap: you get the idea. This wasn’t any walk in the park.

But this guy had just blown my score out of the water, and he now seemed to be extending to me some semblance of a peace offering. That or he was attempting to pull off an illegal drug deal at a health conference.

“What…is it?” I leaned forward and peered into his hand. Emblazoned in tiny gold foiling on the front of black bag was a logo: Neurohacker Collective.

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“It’s basically like a God Pill.”

“A God Pill?” Somewhere deep in the back of my self-quantifying, self-experimentation obsessed lizard brain, I felt a twinge of interest. Now don’t get me wrong – as a Christian, I would never believe that a mere man or woman can truly possess the superpowers of God. But at this point – just two days into the conference and after having been offered copious amounts of kombucha, kefir and other little-known fermented beverages, cannabidiol-infused dark chocolates, bacon-flavored mints, kale-powdered beef jerky and all other manner of potentially explosive diarrhea inducing samples – the mention of a supplement that could potentially transform one into even a fraction of a deity was a proposition I hadn’t yet heard.

I kept staring at the bag. “Um…what does it do?”

“Dude, just try it.” He reached forward, grabbed my forearm with a vice-like gorilla grip, and shoved the black bag into the palm of my hand. As if driven by an invisible, curious-infused force, my fingers closed hard around the tiny bag as though it were a handful of precious diamonds.

The guy grinned ear-to-ear one more time, winked at me, and as he sauntered away, seemingly unfazed by having just thrown down a shuttle run time that made me look like a arthritic sloth, he stopped and looked back over his shoulder. “Oh, and follow the instructions very, very carefully. Enjoy the experience, man.”

Oh geez. Enjoy the experience? What had I gotten into? This was supposed to be a freaking health conference. Not an MDMA-infused rave. And now I was about to potentially go on a full public display of a crazy drug-infused mind-trip.

I looked around. Nobody seemed to be watching. I carefully opened the bag, only to find two additional bags.

I took Bag #1 out and held it up to the fluorescent indoor lights. There were perhaps half-a-dozen capsules inside. On the front, in tiny letters, was written, “Step 1: Upon Waking, Take Three On Empty Stomach.

Before I read the front of the Bag #2, I suspected what it would say. After all, I’m a nutritionist, a self-professed guinea pig, and an adviser to a host of companies in the supplement industry. This means I basically design and consume pills for a living.

I’ll betcha this will be the fat-soluble, take-it-with-food component.

Bingo. I was right. Bag #2 read: “Step 2: Take Six With Breakfast.”

I shoved Bag #2 into my pocket. Then I studied Bag #1 again. I hadn’t just woken. I wasn’t quite sure what I was getting into. But my stomach was indeed empty.

So what the heck?

I glanced nervously towards my twin boys, who, oblivious to my suspicious dealings, were giggling and twirling around on a giant, elephant-sized Bulletproof Coffee mug. I looked at watch. I had two hours before I needed to be on stage as one of the keynote speakers for the event. I looked back at Bag#1, silently hoping that I wasn’t about to turn into an embarrassing father who inexplicably begins climbing into the rafters at a Paleo health conference or a raging carbaholic who is suddenly struck by intense cravings for gluten-powdered baguettes. Then I tipped back my head and swallowed half the contents of Bag #1.

The next 120 minutes were a blur. Like gears gradually grinding into faster and faster motion, my thoughts and word recall and verbal fluency seemed to double in speed within about twenty minutes, and kept getting comfortably faster. As I chased my two eight year old boys through the expanse of the PaleoFX expo, colors became more vibrant, sounds and light more intense. Allow me to point out that I have indeed micro-dosed with LSD, psilocybin and MDMA – all of which produced comparable effects. But not at a response time near as fast. Or with as “clean” of a thought pattern.

What the heck was this stuff?

Two hours later, with a belly full of bacon-flavored truffles, beet-powder-infused salmon jerky and raw camel’s milk, I looked down at my hand. My fingers were wrapped around Bag #2. I opened it, dumped six capsules into my mouth and swallowed. Then I clenched and unclenched my fists, took one deep breath, and stepped onto the massive PaleoFX stage to speak, ironically, about how to safely and effectively hack one’s brain.


Limitless & Lucy

Perhaps it was the combination of eighteen different primal fuels and kombucha fermenting in my stomach, perhaps it was the edgy death-like, I-hope-I-zipped-my-fly fear that accompanies stepping onto stage in front of hundreds of people, or perhaps it was Bag #2 kicking into action, but the effects became even more magnified the moment I stepped on stage.

Whatever it was, I didn’t complain. I just held on tight for the ride on stage as my mouth worked to catch up to my rapidly firing brain. My lucidity and clarity of thought became unparalleled. I wondered if someone had slipped a No-Doz caffeine pill into my camel’s milk, but realized I had none of the agitation or nervousness that accompanies copious such amounts of caffeine. I wondered if this was how Bradley Cooper’s character felt in the movie Limitless.

No, scratch that. Probably more like the way Scarlet Johansson’s character in the movie Lucy felt when Asian terrorists sewed a leaky bag full of smart drugs into her gut lining, but without any scalpels involved.

I had to find out where this stuff came from.

I had to hunt down this mysterious “Neurohacker Collective“.

So I did. And in this article you’ll discover exactly what I found about the most potent neurohacking compound I’ve ever used, and the actual ingredients packed into Bag #1 and Bag #2..


What Is “Neurohacker Collective”?

As you may have heard on the podcast that I just released two days ago entitled “42 Different Ways To Build A Better Brain, The Problem With Modern Smart Drugs, Hacking Your Neurons & More.”, I did indeed eventually connect with the brilliant minds at Neurohacker Collective – specifically a man named Daniel Schmachtenberger.

During that podcast episode, Daniel describes how he began seriously studying health and neurology when he became afflicted with neurological and autoimmune illnesses that had no known solutions in either allopathic or complementary medicine. The insights that lead to his healing came from developing a new model for understanding physiology and pathology, which he then applied to helping many people address various forms of complex illness and optimize their capabilities beyond their previous healthy baselines.

As he worked to create Neurohacker Collective, Daniel was simultaneously the academic dean for a college of mind-body medicine and consulted for a host of functional, integrative physicians and medical clinics to help find novel solutions for complex cases. He created and ran a think tank developing complex systems solutions for environmental and social issues, and directed a transdisciplinary group of scholars on a philosophy of mind project addressing core questions of mind-brain interface and what he calls “an axiomatic reformulation for the epistemology of neuroscience”.

And he’s guinea-pigged extensively with psychedelics, nootropics, meditation, depth psychology, and a plethora of other tools for evolving states and stages of consciousness and evolving the human experience.

Ultimately, Daniel focuses on bringing together scientific research on each individual mechanism and pathway supporting cognitive development, and integrating them into a whole systems view, a complex framework of integrative neuroscience that focused for many years on creating one of the most comprehensive nootropic smart-drug like stacks ever made.

During our podcast, Daniel describes how many “smart drugs” work by artificially increasing one chemical in the brain by overriding its natural function. Problem is, this can cause depletion or neglect of other things, causing imbalances and negative consequences like dependency or a post smart-drug “crash” (Modafinil, anyone?).

This is because cognitive capacity is a nuanced relationship that involves many variables. Optimizing for one variable of cognitive function at the expense of other critical ones doesn’t really bestow comprehensive enhancement of human capability. For instance, having cognitive drive without the ability to focus well could result in you leaping into your office in a post-smart-drug infused craze and churning out a hundred tiny multi-tasks like a keyboarded berserker…without actually accomplishing anything deep or meaningful or truly productive.

Or you could develop steely willpower without emotional resilience, resulting in you being the smartest guy or girl at the office who treats your co-workers like complete crap because you’ve suddenly become a robot-like, hard charging, high achiever with a complete loss of empathy. For that reason, Daniel’s goal was to design a formula that deliberately balances subjective effects to give meaningful enhancement in a comprehensive way – what he describes as “a whole system upgrade”.

In other words, as he designed the capsules that I swallowed in Bag #1 and Bag #2, Daniel’s goal was to support the body’s endogenous neurochemical production and regulatory processes, rather than creating fake, temporary, exogenous brain overrides.

Take IQ, for example – also known as “Intelligence Quotient”. Recent research suggests that notion of a single intelligence quotient vastly oversimplifies intelligence, which is in fact composed of various aspects of what are called “multiple intelligences”, such as verbal intelligence, problem solving, spatial reasoning, etc.

The studies on IQ were led by Adrian Owen of the Brain and Mind Institute at Western, and his studies included more than 100,000 participants from around the globe asking them to complete 12 cognitive tests looking at their memory, reasoning, attention and planning abilities. These findings were published in an article, “Fractioning Human Intelligence, in the Journal Neuron in December 2012, and a couple follow-up articles appeared on Science Daily: “Scientists debunk the IQ myth: Notion of measuring one’s intelligence quotient by singular, standardized test is highly misleading” and Western University: Canada: “Debunking the IQ myth“.

This is all based on a theory proposed by Howard Gardner, which states that intelligence is not unified, but rather multiple, consisting of a set of relatively independent intelligences including linguistic intelligence, mathematical intelligence, spatial intelligence, musical intelligence, kinesthetic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, intrapersonal intelligence, naturalist intelligence, and even based on more recent research, the addition of spiritual intelligence and emotional intelligence. According to this theory, different intelligences can develop at different rates in individuals, and thus a single measure like IQ neglects within person variability across multiple kinds of intelligence.

So basically, if a smart drug or nootropic promises to increase IQ, you must ask yourself if it is increasing multiple intelligences, or just one factor of IQ, such as your ability to blast through multiplication tables, or progress through your Suzuki violin manual at lightning speed.

It’s an interesting theory indeed.

And a glance at the Neurohacker Collective website promises that they have fully researched this complex problem for years, and as a result have designed the most comprehensive, effective cognitive enhancement nootropic in the world today, contaning “42 scientifically researched ingredients” designed to amplify all the aspects that matter most for optimal cognitive and nervous system functioning.

Yep, that’s quite a claim.

But it’s one thing to wax flowery biohacking poetic on a website and quite another to produce a product that actually works. So leading up to my podcast interview with Daniel, and courtesy of Neurohacker Collective, I was able to get my hands on two full bottles of Bag #1 and Bag #2. which turned out to be Daniel’s creation, a super-special formulation he calls “Qualia“.

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It was time to find out whether my experience at PaleoFX was an isolated fluke, or if this Qualia stuff actually works when used with longer term dosage in one’s comfortable, familiar home and office environment. Let’s delve into my own experience, shall we?


How I Took Qualia

Morning one of Qualia experiment.

I wake up, groggy-eyed, and stumble down the wooden stairs of our home, deep in the forest of Spokane, Washington.

Barefoot and still shivering from the morning chill, I flip on the lights to the pantry. I take the bottle of Qualia Step One off the shelf, turn it around and inspect the label, which reads as follows:

qualiastep1

I swallow three capsules with a giant glass of water.

I delve into my admittedly elaborate morning routine of Core Foundation exercises, infrared sauna, a cryotherapy dip into the icy cold pool hidden in the trees behind my house, and thirty minutes of my latest cognitive hack, EEG neurofeedback training while I write in my work of fiction.

Morning routine complete and brain already humming, I go about making my enormous morning smoothie, which I describe in teeth-gritting detail – Pau d’ Arco bark tea, cacao nibs, ceylon cinnamon, Aztec salt and all – at “6 Crazy, Exotic Superfood Cocktails, Shakes & Mind-Bending Recipes.

Just before downing the smoothie, I grab the bottle of Qualia Step Two. I glance at the label:

qualiastep2

According to the Neurohacker Collective website, Qualia is to be taken in two steps as a total of nine pills – three pills from Step One bottle and six pills from the Step Two bottle, always maintaining a 1:2 ratio. So I dump six of the tablets into my hand and swallow.

Then I sit back and wait for the fireworks.


My Experience With Qualia

Now, I’m not going to kick a nootropic, smart-drug infused horse to death and dwell upon what you are probably already aware of when it comes to the claims behind these trendy cognitive enhancing compounds.

Sure, on my first morning (and for the next four days leading up to my podcast with Daniel), I certainly experienced a manifestation of all these claims.

Better focus.

Increased cognitive drive.

Faster reaction time.

Less distractibility.

Enhanced verbal fluency and memory recall.

Frankly, as I describe in my article on How To Make Your Own Smart Drugs, I’ve experimented with just about every nootropic that exists, and many psychedelic compounds and smart drugs to boot. I certainly get some semblance of the effects stated above with many, many of these supplements. So it would be unfair to claim that Qualia is isolated in it’s ability to deliver these type of effects.

But with Qualia – and I realize this is a bit nebulous – these effects seemed to just happen faster and cleaner. And in addition to increases in focus, drive and emotional resilience, I noticed a host of other subtle, less-expected, positive experiences.

Take procrastination, for example. Like most people I know, I tend to have a history of procrastinating on everything from doing my taxes to cleaning out my desk drawer to organizing the ever-growing collection of random tools in the garage. But by the end of my first day on Qualia, I had somehow discovered the willpower, focus and drive to organize my entire biohacking gym corner-to-corner, neatly placing kettlebells, monster bands, maces, stability training balls, balance pads, foam rollers, vibration therapy tools, electrostimulation devices and all other manner of other fitness geekery in tightly systematized sequences.

Hooray for me, and perhaps more importantly, the bonus points scored with my wife.

Next came the dreams. Seriously. I dreamt like crazy.

Perhaps part of this was my recent foray into red light therapy on my gonads to increase testosterone production, but it began with mostly sex dreams. Not bad, horny-clowns-chasing-me-down sex dreams but instead intense, lucid and very pleasant dreams that at one point had me waking up my wife at 2am for a very, very early morning “workout”. I also experienced the sensation of flying through the air like an NBA player dunking a basketball (every time I took a step in my dream), soaring through space like Superman, driving a car extremely high speeds with extreme precision, and simply staring off the edge of a cliff while watching wisps of clouds below and seeing the whole of planet Earth, as if I were some kind of – well – deity.

Daniel informed me later that within the first week of taking the product, many people do indeed report a reregulation of their sleep cycles – sometimes needing less sleep, and sometimes sleeping at different times. They notice they remember their dreams more, there’s more lucidity to them, and that they feel more meaningful. Since science suggests that dreaming is associated with memory consolidation and psychological processing of events, I’ll take this as a good sign.

The next phenomenon was one I didn’t notice until after four days. On my fourth morning of taking Qualia, I began to wake up in the morning with an almost lazy feeling that I possessed an “affluence of time”, which may seem ironic considering that a nootropic should actually speed up cognitive processing speed and task achievement. But despite experiencing an enormous boost in cognition, I still felt more patient, settled and relaxed as I connected my heart rate monitor and began my daily HRV measurement. I spent more time writing in my gratitude journal. I dwelt more heavily on the truth in my OurDailyBread devotions. Life seemed less hectic, less fast-paced.

On the fifth day I noticed something that Daniel mentioned during our podcast: the ability of a full-spectrum nootropic to allow one to respond gracefully to difficult things – specifically an increased sense of empowerment in how one deals with the difficult challenges that arise in life. Instead of going into overwhelm or hopelessness or devastation, Daniel describes that a Qualia user may feel capable of doing what needs to be done in the presence of challenge.

Now mind you, I hadn’t yet spoken to Daniel about this effect, and I didn’t notice this until after five days, but on that fifth day, when I finally turned on my computer to work and the e-mails came flying out of my inbox like a rabid chihuahua wielding a bullet-slinging uzi, I simply sat there, took a deep breath, and experienced an overwhelming wash of relief and a sensation that everything was going to be just fine.

In other words, the normal morning stress did not faze me. This was getting interesting.

Since recording the podcast with Daniel, I’ve noticed two more interesting phenomenon while continuing to take Qualia. First, I’m experiencing less internal emotion and drama, including feeling less concern about what other people think or about proving something to the world.

This manifested itself physically too. My voice has become just slightly more monotone, and a little bit more robotic, especially during business dealings. This had been a tendency for me already, as you may know if you listened to the podcast entitled “I Am A 98% Angry, No-Nonsense, Perfectionistic, Extremely Unconventional, Rule-Breaking, Fearless Assassin-Sniper“. But it became more pronounced, in a good way. meaning that I thought more quickly, had better verbal fluency, experienced superior memory recall, and became more like a well-oiled Ferrari engine, but without an actual loss of empathy for others.

The best way I can describe this is that I spoke and argued and debated and podcasted and had phone calls with far fewer vocal “ups and downs”. Sure, I suppose this could be a bad thing if I were, say, an opera singer, but pretty good for getting business done like a well-sharpened sushi knife – cutting straight through the flesh of a conversation or problem like butter.

The final unpredictable sensation I’m now experiencing while taking Qualia is that of epiphany, which I’d describe as a sense of “aha” or revelation about things that involve though synthesis. This was a pretty cool hidden gem that has led to breakthroughs in business and personal areas that I was originally stuck. I’ve actually been forced to begin carrying my Moleskin notebook around more religiously because thoughts and epiphanies have begun to strike me at any moment. Brainstorms. Big picture business insights. Sudden plot breakthroughs for my work of fiction. You get the idea. All good things.

So…

…dang.

What on earth is in this stuff? Let’s find out.


Ingredients and How This Stuff Works

Each ingredient included in Qualia is based on a whole system design methodology. This means that Daniel and his team have taken singular care to understand the specific effects of 42 different ingredients and how they combine with each other to effect the mind, brain and body interface.

They pulled this off by engaging in a rigorous examination of something called “neuropsychopharmacology“, an interdisciplinary science that combines psychopharmacology (which is the study of how chemicals affect the mind) and neuroscience (which is the study of the neural mechanisms that chemicals act upon to influence behavior).

The team at Neurohacker Collective performed a comprehensive analysis of neuroscience research to determine the underlying regulatory hardware responsible for mediating the desired subjective and performative effects they wanted to get out of a pill. Along the way, their goal stayed constant: to magnify all normal and healthy physiologic pathways and processes, with the goal of evolving a more robust and complex neural network and regulatory system functioning.

The end result was 42 different ingredients split into 7 different categories, and below you will find a full list of Qualia’s ingredients and categories. You can click here for very intense, nitty-gritty details about why they included these specific compounds in this stack and to read more of the research behind the formulation.

Category 1: Nootropic Compounds.

These are psychoactive and neuroactive chemicals that play key roles in modulating receptor sites, synaptic enzymes, membrane structures, cerebral perfusion, biogenic processes, neuroendocrine regulation and more.

Noopept (very similar to Racetam)
Huperzine A
Phenylethylamine
Uridine Monophosphate
Phosphatidylserine
Hordenine HCI
Vinpocetine
Theobromine
DHEA
Pure Energy (Pterostilbene bound to Caffeine)

Category 2: Choline Donors.

These are active forms of choline donors that work through different pathways in the peripheral and central nervous system to support acetylcholine levels, along with the other synergistically stacked cholinergics (acetyl donors, acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, racetamic compounds, etc.)

Centrophenoxine
Citicoline (CDP Choline)
Alpha GPC

Category 3: Amino Acids

These are the building blocks for key neurotransmitters and hormones, and agents that are part of the processes of cellular energy production, osmoregulation, signaling, antioxidation, neurogenesis, and neuroprotection.

Acetyl-L-Carnitine
N-Acetyl Tyrosine
DL-Phenylalanine
Taurine
L-Theanine

Category 4: Neuro-Vitamins

These are key limiting factor vitamins in specific activated forms required for major neuroregulatory and neurodevelopmental processes.

Vit B1 as Benfotiamine
Vit B3 as Niacinamide
Vit B5 as Calcium Pantothenate
Vit B6 as Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate (P-5-P)
Vit B12 as Methylcobalamin
Vit C as Ascorbic Acid
Vit D3 as Microencapsulated Cholecalciferol

Category 5: Adaptogen Extracts

These herbal adaptogens are concentrating active compounds while maintaining complex synergistic co-factors – supporting Adrenal/ HPA regulation, Long Term Potentiation, AMPK activation, neurogenesis, catecholamine production, tissue regeneration, and many regulatory functions.

Bacopa Monnieri: 55% Bacosides
Mucuna Pruriens: 98% L-Dopa
Ginkgo Biloba: 24% glycosides, 6% terpene lactones
Coleus Forskohlii: 20% Forskolin
Artichoke Extract: 5% Cynarin
Rhodiola Rosea: 3% Rosavins, 1% Salidrosides
Lion’s Mane: 30% polysaccharides
ActivAMP Gynostemma

Category 6: Neuro-Minerals

These are limiting factor minerals required for major neurochemical regulatory processes in forms that are bioavailable and can cross the blood brain barrier.

Lithium Orotate
Magnesium Threonate
Zinc Picolinate

Category 7: Neuro-Anti-inflammatories and Antioxidants

These are synergist compounds that support nutrient transport and utilization, cytokine and eicosanoid modulation, neurotrophin factors, redox reactions, cholesterol regulation, and much more.

BioPQQ
Quercetin
Curcumin
Algal DHA
Green Tea Extract: 98% polyphenols, 45% EGCG
Bioperine

Whew.

And lest you think these raw ingredients are sourced from out-dated, giant wooden bins in China where they’re getting sprayed with ethylene oxide and other preservatives, then take heart.

These folks are using, for lack of a better phrase, high quality s&*t.

For example, all the Qualia ingredients are chosen based on the strong empirical basis of their safety and efficacy. They take into account several kinds of research: Phase II & III university and clinical trials, quantified self-research data, and over 40+ years international research on nootropic stack formulation.

All the ingredients are tested for heavy metals, mycotoxins, pesticides, and other forms of environmental toxin, and ensured to be at levels far lower than FDA GMPs requirements. No silica, magnesium stearate, animal, or toxic binders or fillers are used.

They use only high quality raw ingredients, many of which come from patented sources and are considered “best in class” in the supplements industry. (e.g. BioPerine piperine, pTeroPure pterostilbene, etc.)

They concentrate each ingredient to the highest potency and bioavailability currently commercially possible, and all their herbs and botanicals are standardized for potency and purity of active ingredients. Every single ingredient that Neurohacker Collective uses arrives from a supplier with a Certificate of Analysis (CoA) ensuring its purity and potency. Then they go a step further and batch test every ingredient coming in by using the most chromatography and spectrometry and the same spendy kind of lab analysis techniques I talked about in this behind-the-scenes supplement interview with the lead physician at Thorne, including, in addition to batch testing raw materials coming in, pulling bottles of market-ready product and verifying the formulation inside each capsule.

All their nutraceuticals are in the most biologically active form for the purpose intended (i.e. methylated, acetylated, phosphorylated, L-form, D-form, etc). The form of the nutrient makes orders of magnitude difference to its effectiveness (that’s why the $30,000 bottle of ketones I chugged in a recent Snapchat video beats the pants off other forms of ketone salts – because it’s in a certain molecular configuration I talk about here).

In addition to Neurohacker Collective‘s manufacturing lab, they also have a research & development lab where they produce and test dozens of iterations of their nootropic formulations. They have had over 2 years of internal testing demonstrating safety and efficacy, and have consulted dozens of doctors, researchers, and formulators in the development of Qualia.

Yes, it’s vegan.

And gluten-free, lest you not want bread with your smart drugs.

Non-GMO? Check.

No artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners.

Hydroxypropylmethylcellulose (HPMC) vegetarian capsules. Fancy word for fiber, basically.

And here, in all its glory, is what Step One and Step Two actually look like, should you be concerned about branding and aesthetics and color.

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Summary

If you’ve seen the surreal smart-drug movies I mentioned earlier (“Limitless” or “Lucy“) you probably have a sense of what may one day be possible, at least if you your friend gives you a secret drug while you’re facing unemployment and a girlfriend’s rejection, or you’re being captured by Japanese terrorists. Qualia isn’t quite like what you see in these thrilling movies, but it’s the closest thing to a “magic pill” movie experience that’s out there. Which is especially impressive considering that it is legal. And readily purchaseable.

A God pill?

Mmm…that’s a bit too potentially blasphemous and offensive for me to continue to label it as such.

But a “magic” pill?

I’ll take it.

And now you can too.

If you want to play it safe and just try a month’s supply, which is a single bottle of Step One and a single bottle of Step Two, then just click here and use 15% discount code ben15.

If you’re all in and ready to spring for a monthly subscription (which can be cancelled at any time) click here and use 15% discount code BEN15r (“r” as in “repeating” – and that code will only work for a repeating order which, by the way, is already discounted 20%. So you’re getting a pretty slammin’ deal).

Finally, should you be a soccer mom or college student or bartender scratching your head about whether this is something that no folks other than professional athletes or hard-charging CEO’s or insane biohackers would ever take, then please know that Qualia is not just some “natural” Modafinil or Adderall alternative for fringe rich people or self-quantifying guinea pigs. Scientists, artists, creators, entrepreneurs, activists, parents, and students of every kind are now using this stuff. Qualia is designed for anyone who wants to do meaningful things with their life, have deep and profound experiences, and fully optimize their capability towards those goals, even if it means lucid dreaming, late night sex sessions, and achieving zero e-mails in your inbox at an unfair rate of speed.

Anyways, if you have questions, thoughts or feedback about Qualia, about the concept of “neurohacking” in general, about nootropics, smart drugs, or anything else related to enhancing cognitive performance via nutrition, then leave your comments below and I will reply!

You can also click here to listen to my podcast with Qualia creator Daniel Schmachtenberger, and again, if you want to get your hands on this stuff now, just use code “BEN15” at the Neurohacker Collective website for a single order or code “BEN15r” for any recurring order.  And as that dude in the beginning of this story told me, enjoy the experience. ;)

5 Recent Health Discoveries From Near & Far: Is Fermented Cod Liver Oil Is A Scam? The Finnish Super Smoothie, Kettlebell Walks, Infrared Brain Therapy & Fascial Reboots.

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I’m constantly tweaking, guinea-pigging, experimenting with, quantifying and designing new biohacks, tips, tricks, tools and toys that can make your life better.

But honestly, I only get a chance to talk about perhaps 25% of what I actually mess around with and discover in my constant quest to learn techniques for a better body, brain and spirit.

So in today’s short and sweet article, I’m going to give you the skinny on five recent health discoveries from near and far, including the fermented cod liver oil scam, a Finnish super smoothie, kettlebell walks, infrared brain therapy and how to reboot your fascia. If you like these kind of quick tips, let me know in the comments section below and I’ll keep ’em coming!


The Finnish Super-Smoothie

Remember Veli-Jussi Jalkanen, known by his nickname “Vessi”? I interviewed this eccentric Finnish businessman, biohacker and health advocate in the episode “An Anti-Aging Chat With A 65-Year-Old Finnish Businessman Who Plays Tennis Left & Right Handed, Defies Modern “Unhealthy” Clothing Fashion & Invented The Most Unique Chair In The World.

I’m always fascinated by the personal habits and daily protocols of healthy old people like Vessi, so much so that tomorrow I will be flying to the Finland Biohackers’ Summit and tacking on a two day trip to Vessi’s farm near Helsinki. Anyways, I was overjoyed when he e-mailed me after our podcast with three detailed spreadsheets that spelled out his entire daily protocol for his “Super Smoothie”, his extensive record-keeping of every herb and spice he’s experimented with, and his detailed supplement protocol. Now the files are yours for free download. Enjoy.

-Vessi’s full “Super Smoothie” recipe: click here to download full recipe in Excel format. My favorite part of this is his footnote (read all his entertaining footnotes, by the way) which reads: “…most noticeable impact is that your intestyne starts to empthy itself 2-3 times a day which is very sound. The peristaltic motion shall activate. You also get huge amounts of nutrients…”

-Vessi’s extremely detailed spices and herb effects chart: click here to download. Pay close attention to the ones he has marked “S”, which means “Strong Effect”.

-Vessi’s full supplement routine with detailed notes: click here to download. From his daily protocol for everything from parasites to psychopharmacology, it’s all there. I find it quite interesting that most of the very robust, long-living, anti-aging enthusiasts who I know, from Mark Sisson to Laird Hamilton to Dave Asprey, take copious amounts of supplements each day, and one could argue our healthy ancestors, in the absence of encapsulation and tablet technologies, did the same thing, albeit from teas, oils, tinctures, powders and extracts.

A huge thanks to Vessi for supplying us with these. Vessi was also a significant contributor and source of knowledge for the Biohackers’ Handbook on Nutrition, so if you like these tips, then go read my review of that groundbreaking book at “21 Unfamiliar Nutrition Tricks I Discovered In The Biohackers’ Handbook.


Kettlebell Walk

This is a new invention of mine, sparked by an evening on which I was stressed from a long day of work, hadn’t yet done a workout, and, wanting a dose of fresh air, didn’t really feel like an indoor workout at a gym.

So I shouted at my wife that I was going to head out for a walk, and on my way out the door, I noticed the kettlebell sitting by the garage door.

Then I thought, “What the heck?”, and I grabbed the 1 pood (~36 pound) kettlebell – with a plan to warm-up for my walk with a few kettlebell swings, carry the kettlebell for the first few minutes of my walk and then set it down at the end of the driveway.

An hour later, I found myself dripping in sweat with very activated glutes, an exhausted core, and bulging veins on both arms from an intensive grip workout. So what exactly did I do on my “kettlebell walk”?

-Walk 100 steps with the kettlebell in the right hand.

-Walk 100 steps with the kettlebell in the left hand.

Stop and do 30 kettlebell swings.

-Walk 100 steps with the kettlebell held to your chest.

-Stop and do 30 kettlebell rows for each arm.

-Walk 100 steps with the kettlebell held overhead.

-Stop and do 30 kettlebell squats.

-Repeat this sequence for entire length of walk (I recommend shooting for 60 minutes).

Finally, follow this simple rule: never, never, ever set the kettlebell down. No matter what. Your neighbors are going to give you funny looks, but screw ’em – try this workout out and let me know what you think in the comments section below.

If you want crazy, one-of-a-kind kettlebell carved with images of things like zombies and chimps, I’d recommend you grab akettlebell or two using my Onnit discount code, which gives you 5% off of any piece of fitness gear. Just click here and the discount will automatically apply.


Full Head Infrared Therapy

Last week, I released the podcast “Probiotic Enemas, Digestive Enzyme Myths, Breathing 10 Kilograms of Oxygen, Low-Protein Diets & More!“. During that episode, my crazy smart guest Matt Gallant made me feel like a complete slacker when he informed me that intranasal light therapy I’ve been using to shut down inflammation in neural tissue and to stimulate my brain into alpha-brain wave production was inferior.

It’s such a first world problem to find out that the light you’ve been sticking up your nose is indeed not the ultimate brain biohack. Instead, Matt described to me the “Vielight Neuro”, which is a transcranial-intranasal near infrared (NIR) headset, engineered for domestic use. It delivers a hefty dose of intranasal light therapy along with transcranial photobiomodulation for whole-brain stimulation and targeting of the brain’s “Default Mode Network (DMN)”, which translates to better sleep, more relaxation, more focused brain wave production and according to the podcast I recorded with the inventor (How To Use Low Level Light Therapy and Intranasal Light Therapy For Athletic Performance, Cognitive Enhancement & More.) significantly reduced risk of cognitive issues like Alzheimer’s and dementia.

So (no surprise here, and please don’t tell my wife), I ponied up the one-thousand-dollar-plus investment and bought one. I’ve been experimenting with it for focus by using it in the morning for 20 minutes, and also experimenting with it for sleep by using it in the evening for 20 minutes (not on the same day, because excessive stimulation of mitochondria with infrared light can cause too much free radical production).

Holy moly. The thing works. I’ll admit it’s a spendy biohack but in my opinion, if you want your brain to keep up with your body for the long haul, or just want memory and verbal fluency that makes you as sharp as a tack, it’s well worth it. And if you’re wearing a white lab coat sitting in your mom’s basement stroking your neck beard and curious about the biochemistry behind this, here, in all it’s glory, is the explanation from researcher Lew Lim at Vielight:

“The current widely accepted proposal is that low level visible red to near infrared light energy is absorbed by mitochondria and converted into ATP for cellular use. In addition, the process creates mild oxidants (ROS) that leads to gene transcription and then to cellular repair and healing. The process also unclogs the chain that has been clogged by nitric oxide (NO).[1] The nitric oxide is then released back into the system. Nitric oxide is a molecule that our body produces to help its 50 trillion cells communicate with each other by transmitting signals throughout the entire body. Additionally, nitric oxide helps to dilate the blood vessels and improve blood circulation…

Near-infrared light stimulates mitochondrial respiration in neurons by donating photons that are absorbed by cytochrome oxidase, a bioenergetics process called photoneuromodulation in nervous tissue.[5]The absorption of luminous energy by the enzyme results in increased brain cytochrome oxidase enzymatic activity and oxygen consumption. Since the enzymatic reaction catalyzed by cytochrome oxidase is the reduction of oxygen to water, acceleration of cytochrome oxidase catalytic activity directly causes an increase in cellular oxygen consumption. [6]Increased oxygen consumption by nerve cells is coupled to oxidative phosphorylation, ATP production increases as a consequence of the metabolic action of near-infrared light. This type of luminous energy can enter brain mitochondria transcranially, and—independently of the electrons derived from food substrates—it can directly photostimulate cytochrome oxidase activity…

…[1] – “Biphasic Dose Response in Low Level Light Therapy”; Sulbha K. Sharma (PhD), Ying-Ying Huang (MD), James Carroll, Michael R. Hamblin (PhD)

[2, 3, 4] – “Is light-emitting diode phototherapy (LED-LLLT) really effective?”; Won-Serk Kim (PhD, MD), R Glen Calderhead (PhD)

[5, 6, 7] – “Augmentation of cognitive brain functions with transcranial infrared light”; Francisco Gonzalez-Lima (PhD), Douglas W Barrett (MD)

So…basically it’s like Viagra for your brain.

You can check the Neuro out at Vielight and I’ve negotiated a 10% discount code for you: “GREENFIELD”. And yes, you will get even more strange looks from your neighbors.


Fascial Rebooting

I recently had a young man fly all the way from Alabama to Washington state, knock on my front door, and train me for a solid eight hours in a special form of myofascial release called “ELDOA”. His name is not-yet-to-be-released – as he’s one of those brilliant practitioners who flies under the radar – but I’m trying to wrangle him down for a podcast that I promise to release soon.

In the meantime, I must admit that this was one of the best (and most difficult) forms of stretching I’ve ever found. You can learn more and find an instructor (recommended to take a course) at ELDOAMethod.com, but in a nutshell, doing just a few minutes of these stretches each day is one of the best ways to eliminate low back pain, heal the spine, hydrate tissue and joints, and get a full body myofascial stretch.

But don’t have to hire a private instructor.  Just watch the videos below, which my instructor informed me was the “80/20” (the 20% of ELDOA that will yield 80% of the results) and then find a time every day to hold each of the following stretches for sixty seconds to 120 seconds. Hold each stretch as hard as you can with as extreme an attention to form and deep breathing as possible.

ELDOA T6-T7 video

ELDOA T8-T9 video

ELDOA L5-S1 video

The videos above are ones that I simply found via YouTube searches and I don’t necessarily endorse the perfection of the instructors, but they give you a very, very good idea of the basic moves.

You do not need to do these all at once, and can break them up throughout day, but I guarantee that if you learn these and make them a daily “movement snack”, you’re going to feel about two inches taller, and any back or joint pain will significantly diminish. They’re especially effective after car rides, airplane trips, meetings or any other situation in which you’ve been sitting for extended periods of time.


Is Fermented Cod Liver Oil A Scam?

In last week’s podcast, in response to a listener question about whether kids should use nootropics or smart drugs, I mentioned that one supplement my twin eight year old boys take on a nightly basis is Green Pastures Fermented Cod Liver Oil. And I am currently at the Weston A. Price conference, where fermented cod liver oil is getting handed out like candy (and where I shot the featured image for this blog post). But after releasing that podcast, I received a notice from my friend Dr. Mercola informing me about a shocking expose of cod liver oil authored by “Naughty Nutritionist” Kaalya Daniels and entitled “Hook, Line & Stinker: The Truth About Cod Liver Oil“. Here’s an anecdote from the report:

“Lab tests indicate the Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil is rancid; putrid; low in the fat-soluble vitamins A, D and K; apparently diluted with a trans-fat containing vegetable oil — and not even from cod. We have reliable reports that the X-Factor Gold Butter Oil comes from Argentina, not the Great Plains, and it tests rancid as well. And contrary to Green Pasture’s advertising, Dr. Weston A. Price’s own words make it clear that these are not products he would ever have endorsed.”

Yikes.

Anyways, you can click here to download and read the full, free .pdf report, but suffice it to say, I have decided that until I see concrete evidence proving that fermented cod liver oil is indeed safe, I am going to play it prudent and put a pause on feeding fermented cod liver oil to my kids. As a replacement, I’m shifting to organic, grass-fed ghee, which costs substantially less, but is just as high (or higher) in fat soluble vitamins, without these potential concerns associated with fermented cod liver oil.*

As far as ghee goes, I’m honestly not to picky on ghee brands, but here are a few of the better organic options from Amazon (or if you have a membership to Thrive Market, you can find really good, organic stuff for up to 50% off).

*After writing this statement, I had dinner with Chris Masterjohn, who informed me he wrote this extensive blog post addressing the fermented cod liver oil concern. The following morning, I had brunch with Sally Fallon, who informed me of this nuclear magnetic resonance testing and an extensive rebuttal regarding fermented cod liver oil.

This all happened over the weekend. Egads. Now I’m confused. Ah…first world problems.

So, currently, I am still planning to err on the safe side and don’t plan on fermented cod liver oil retaining a hallowed place in my refrigerator until I have done pre-and-post blood and biomarker testing on myself after supplementing with it for one to two months. I’ll particularly look at my lipid panel, cholesterol particles, inflammatory markers, glucose, insulin and omega fatty-acid ratios. So stay tuned.


Summary

So that’s it.

Short and sweet, I know, but if you dig these type of quick reviews, just let me know in the comments section below and I’ll keep publishing them!

And leave your questions, comments and feedback about cod liver oil, kettlebell walks, Finnish super smoothies, infrared brain therapy, and fascial reboots below, and I promise to reply.

Probiotic Enemas, Digestive Enzyme Myths, Breathing 10 Kilograms of Oxygen, Low-Protein Diets & More!

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Matt Gallant is an entrepreneur, a poker champion, an ex-rock guitarist, a strength and conditioning coach with a degree in kinesiology, the CEO of a company called BiOptimizers, and a guy who send me e-mails like this:

Subject line: probiotic enema

Break open a handful of capsules and ferment in coconut water…reaches peak power around 4-5 hours of fermentation. However you live in a cooler climate so it might take longer. You can drink it, and if it’s still sweet then you can go longer. When it starts to become a bit acidic, that’s when it is at it’s peak. For enema, retention time should be 15-20 minutes. I like doing the Batman enema. I’ll go upside down with the Om Swing so it really works it’s way down. I tend to do this after two days of fasting so it really takes care of old bad bacteria…”

As you can imagine, this dude thinks outside the box when it comes to nutrition and health.

He is also joined on today’s podcast by , a natural bodybuilder, vegetarian and low-protein diet advocate. Wade is a 3-time All Natural Bodybuilding Champion, advisor to the American Anti-Cancer Institute, director of Education at BiOptimizers Nutrition and a vegetarian for over 13 years. He is also the author of several books including the best-selling books “Staying Alive in a Toxic World”.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-The reason Matt does probiotic and digestive enzyme enemas…[9:25]

-The full-head laser light therapy treatment Matt does on his body each morning…[14:40]

-What you need to look for if you are going to use an ionizing water plate to alkalinize your water…[16:30]

-The method Wade uses to breathe in 10 kilograms of oxygen each morning…[22:20]

-Why Wade consumes Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s) each morning…[25:15]

-How Wade maintains and builds muscle on a low-protein, vegetarian diet…[32:40]

-Why can’t your body just digest food all on it’s own without an enzyme…[37:00]

-The 13 different types of digestive enzymes, and how to know when you should take which…[45:20]

-A muscle-building hack you can use by breaking open digestive enzymes and probiotics and adding them to a shake or smoothie…[50:20]

-Why BiOptimizers only has one single strain in their probiotic formula…[53:50]

-What happens if you take digestive enzymes on an empty stomach…[57:50]

-How to use digestive enzymes combined with salt as a potent meat tenderizer…[63:25]

-The groundbreaking enzyme study that showed hematoma recovery to go from 15.6 days to 6.6 days, swelling from 10 days to 4 days, restriction of movement from 12.6 days to 5 days, inflammation from 10.5 days to 3.8 days and unfit for training status from 10.2 days to 4.2 days…[64:45]

-The biggest mistakes most people make when using digestive enzymes…[68:00]

-Whether you should take digestive enzymes before, during or after a meal…[71:55]

-Matt’s step-by-step protocol for giving yourself a highly effective probiotic enema…[74:15]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

Bioptimizers website where you can find Matt and Wade’s probiotic and MassZymes P3-OM digestive enzyme blends <–click for discount

Crik Nurtition ( code BEN for 15% off first purchase)

OmSwing Yoga swing

The Power Of When podcast about Wolves, Dolphins, Lions and Bears

Vielight Neuro (10% discount code is “GREENFIELD”)

Kangen water machine for alkanizing and structuring water

-Website with study: “Double-Blind Clinical Study Using Certain Proteolytic Enzymes Mixtures In Karate Fighters

-Website with study: “Therapy Of Ankles Join Distortions With Hydrolytic Enzymes; Results Of Double-Blind Clinical Trials

Traumatic Injury In Athletes paper

-Website with study: Enzyme Therapy And Sports Injuries

Do you have questions, thoughts or feedback for Matt or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply!

Four Healthy Coffee Alternatives For Workout Energy.

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It’s that time of week again – the day when I give you a sneak peek at practical, quick and dirty fitness tips from this week’s Get-Fit Guy article.

See, each week, over at the Quick & Dirty Tips Network, I produce a free, easy-to-read article, accompanied by a short 5-10 minute audio version of that article. Everything there is focused on the latest fitness research, exercise news, and quick and highly practical muscle gain, fat loss and physical performance tips. It’s called “The Get-Fit Guy’s Quick & Dirty Tips To Slim Down & Shape Up”.

Here’s your sneak peek from this week’s article, Four Healthy Coffee Alternatives For Workout Energy.

“It’s no secret that I’m mildly obsessed with my morning cup of coffee. From fretting over the coarseness of the grind, to dialing in the absolutely perfect water temperature to using stainless steel filters, pourover method and, of course, my very lucky, customized “Man In The Arena” Theodore Roosevelt coffee mug, there’s just something I can’t resist about a piping hot morning cup of flavorful joe.

But when it comes to my pre-workout supplementation strategy, things get a bit different. I’m really not a fan of dumping a host of sympathetic nervous system, “fight-and-flight” triggering compounds – including caffeine – into my body before I go pound the pavement or hit the gym. Why? I just don’t like the jittery, “fake energy”, overstimulated feeling I get from using central nervous system stimulants pre-workout, and would rather not mask fatigue, push through an overtrained body when I’m tired and should perhaps instead be taking a nap or doing yoga, or just overstimulate my adrenal glands with excessive caffeine…”

Want to take a deeper dive? Read the whole article? Grab the audio version? Click here to go check it out now or bookmark for later.

Finally, if you have your own ideas for future fitness articles you’d like to see me write, leave your ideas in the comments section below.

How To Use Growth Hormone Stacks For A Better Body: Everything You Need To Know About IGF-LR3, GHRP, and GHRH Peptide Stacks.

How To Use Growth Hormone Stacks

“Every man desires to live long,” wrote Jonathan Swift, “but no man would be old.”

What exactly does this mean?

It means that one potent and innate human desire is to live a long time. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t just want to live a long and full life – I also want to feel really dang good doing it, especially when I’m old. I don’t want to be cold, hungry, feeble, frail and fragile. I’d rather be like the impressive, muscular, vibrant seniors I talk about in my article “5 Anti-Aging Secrets From Five Of The Fittest Old People On The Face Of The Planet”.

Yeah, I want to be the ripped ninety year old sprinting down the golf course, loaded down with clubs, basking in the sunshine with a huge smile on my face…

…and hurrying to finish my game so I can get home to pump iron and make love to my wife.

There, I said it.

This is why, a few weeks ago, I published the article “Should You Use This Controversial Hormone Marketed As A Natural “Fountain Of Youth”?” in which I explained how natural compounds such as colostrum, whey protein and the milk of mammals such as cows and goats and camels can be safe and efficacious way to get all the anti-aging, anabolic, recovery, sleep-enhancing, muscle repair and fat loss benefits of elevated growth hormone and elevated insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) levels. Or, you could be like the world’s oldest woman at 116 years old and just eat eggs and cookies every day.

But since publishing that Fountain Of Youth post last week, I’ve received many, many inquiries from athletes, anti-aging enthusiasts and biohackers who, despite being aware of these”natural” methods such as colostrum, whey and milk, are still extremely interested in the concept of biohacking growth hormone levels and the subsequent anti-aging effect via “better-living-through-science” methods such as injections, stacks and supplements.

And so, in today’s article, I’m going to give you everything you need to know about how to use what is probably the most potent of these methods: IGF injections. I’ll also fill you in on two types of compounds that should accompany any IGF injections – Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide (GHRP) and Growth Hormone Releasing Hormone (GHRH).

I am not a doctor and this is not to be taken, interpreted or construed as medical advice. Please talk with a licensed medical professional about this. These are just my own personal thoughts and not a prescription or a diagnosis or any form of health care whatsoever. In addition, most of this stuff is banned by the World Anti-Doping Association (WADA), US Anti-Doping Association (USADA) and other international governing bodies of sport, so you should not use any of these compounds if you are competing in any sanctioned sport.

Cool? Alright, let’s do this.


Why Take Growth Hormone?

In my previous article on growth hormones and IGF, I delved into the nitty-gritty of what exactly growth hormone and IGF are, and why you’d want to elevate them (in moderation) in the first place. The fact is, the amount of growth hormone that your body produces naturally declines as you age and the amount of growth hormone that you need increases based on your level of activity and how much recovery you need and how much you are beating your body up on a day-to-day basis.

Inadequate growth hormone – especially when combined with aging and physical activity – results in muscle loss, decreased elasticity, joint pain, fat gain, decreased stamina and all the other annoying variables we often associate growing old. This is probably why, as people are living longer, wanting to get bigger, stronger, sexier and faster with age, and wanting to stay active and robust much later in life, there is a growing interest in using “better living through science”, including supplementation and injections, to maximize growth hormone levels.

Bodybuilders are a perfect example of a population that – through self-experimentation and guinea-pigging, exchanging practical experiences in threads upon threads of deep “broscience” conversation in forums, and displaying an extreme willingness to push the limits – have learned how to tweak, how to pulse and how to increase growth hormone levels. This is partially because they have to maximize every last drop of training and recovery, day in and day out, and also because they are complete, geeked-out devotees of topics like how to build muscle, lose fat, and shape a physique that (whether or not you think a bodybuilder’s body is an “attractive” physique) speaks volumes to their ability to be able to mold the human machine beyond what most folks are able to achieve, and more specifically to be able to intelligently use synthetic hormones and derivatives that help increase muscle recovery, repair joint damage, rejuvenate collagen production, and aid in cellular repair.

Three specific growth hormones that the bodybuilding world was one of the first to tap into, and that are now being explored by the anti-aging, athlete and biohacking communities, are the peptide compounds IGF-LR3, GHRP, and GHRH. Let’s delve into what exactly these peptides are and how they can work together to push you past that plateau and into peak shape. If you need a review of what a peptide is, then I’d highly recommend you read my previous articles “How To Use BPC-1f57” and “How To Use TB-500“.

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What is IGF-LR3?

IGF-LR3 is short for “Insulin-like Growth Factor – 1 Long Arg3”.  IGF-LR3 is just a protein, and more specifically a polypeptide hormone that, since it contains some of the same molecular structure as insulin, closely mimics the anabolic effects of insulin. It contains a sequence of 83 amino acids, and the arg3 in the name refers to arginine being in the third position in this amino acid sequence. Should you be curious as to what the amino acid sequence is of IGF-LR3, it is: MFPAMPLSSL FVNGPRTLCG AELVDALQFV CGDRGFYFNK PTGYGSSSRR APQTGIVDEC CFRSCDLRRL EMYCAPLKPA KSA (I really don’t know why anyone would care about that, but nonetheless, there it is, in all it’s glory for you peptide freaks).

IGF-LR3 responds to signals from growth hormone (GH), and it is the most potent growth factors in the human body, which is probably why it is often referred to in the bodybuilding community as an “anabolic powerhouse”. In other words, this is the stuff that helps you to maintain lean tissue and helps your muscles grow by causing the splitting and forming of new muscle cells (hyperplasia).

While the most well-known property of IGF-LR3 is this muscle maintenance and building effect that helps many folks look better than their built-in genetics intended, there are several other benefits of IGF-LR3, including:

Bodybuilders first started using this stuff when they found themselves spending hours in the gym each week, eating plain chicken piled on broccoli (with no salad dressing of course), only to find themselves unable to get that extra little bit of fat loss or muscle gain. In other words, IGF-LR3 was originally used as a way to break through a fat loss or muscle gain plateau, with the idea that one could spend weeks at the same weight and fitness level without the use of exogenous IGF-LR3 supplementation, but if a cycle of IGF-LR3 was added, the body suddenly gets sparked into anabolic action again.

From a muscle gain or fat loss standpoint, it’s really only the top small percentage of seriously competitive bodybuilders and highly competitive athletes who would get any additional gains from adding IGF-LR3.  So it’s probably not necessary for the weekend warriors, the overweight post-New Year’s gym enthusiasts, or the average athlete – unless they are looking for a fast shortcut.

In this case, IGF-LR3 is going to help you get past your physical limitations, but this synthetic protein can have some serious side effects when not used properly, including intestinal, heart, and spleen growth.  Very advanced bodybuilders are meticulous and know what they are doing and are able to minimize or eliminate any negative effects by using the strategies you’re going to discover in the rest of this article.

So what I’m saying to you is – while the potentially negative risks are minimal when you use the stuff properly and include the type of GHRP’s and GHRH’s you’re about to discover – the risks of simply injecting IGF willy-nilly are very, very real and you don’t want to pretend they don’t exist or just inject random compounds without using proper stacking and combination methods with GHRP and GHRH.

——————–

What Are GHRP’s?

As you’ve just learned, you can’t just use IGF all by its lonesome self. To get the most benefit out of IGF, or any other Growth Hormone precursor, you must be familiar with GHRH’s and GHRP’s.

This is because when you combine these compounds with a peptide like IGF, they cause and amplify a natural pulse of Growth Hormone (GH) from your body. In a nutshell, GHRP’s release a pulse of GH, and then the GHRH’s release and amplify this pulse. Combining both GHRP and GHRH together, along with a peptide like IGF, can give more than double the effect of either alone. They pack a potent one-two punch when you take them together in a peptide stack. Using both together, and in a cycle with IGF-LR3, stimulates the most growth hormone production and maximizes muscles gains, fat loss, recovery and the other benefits of using peptides like this.

GHRP is short for “Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide”, and is a chemical class of growth hormones in the category of drugs known as GH Secretagogues that stimulate the body’s natural release of the natural growth hormone (GH), primarily by stimulating the pituitary gland to produce more Growth Hormone. GHRP’s are (as their name obviously implies) peptides, specifically synthetic oligopeptides. There are many peptides in the GHRP family but the four most common are GHRP-6, GHRP-2, Ipamorelin, and Hexarelin – and these are the only ones I’m going to mention in this article, so let’s get to it.

All four of these GHRP’s share these common benefits:

GHRP-6 is one of the first GHRP’s synthesized, and is widely considered to be the most effective of the growth hormone releasing peptides.  There’s some controversy about that as some people prefer or report superior results with GHRP-2, which is often referred to as the “second generation” version of GHRP’s, but the choice between GHRP-6 and GHRP-2 really depends on the outcome you are looking for. You’re going to see benefits from either one.

For example, compared to GHRP-2, GHRP-6 tends to cause a huge increase in hunger. So if you are trying to gain lean mass and muscle, stay very anabolic or are struggling to eat enough food to meet high calorie intake needs based on activity levels, then it make senses to go with GHRP-6. On the flipside, if caloric restriction and rapid fat loss are your goals, then GHRP-2 is going to be a superior choice compared to GHRP-6. GHRP-2 does indeed cause far less appetite stimulation, so it can be a more beneficial choice for someone trying to keep lean and keep their eating in check. If you tend to overeat and struggle with a little excess fat around your middle for example, go with the GHRP-2 instead of GHRP-6. GHRP-2 is often considered superior to GHRP-6 because it can be dosed in higher amounts with less desensitization. Both GHRP-2 and GHRP-6 tend to cause fluctuations in the body’s natural production of prolactin and cortisol, which can also be concerning from a hormonal standpoint.

Ipamorelin (IPA) is also a synthetic peptide product that tends to be used solely for growth hormone (GH) release.  It can be dosed higher than GHRP-6 or GHRP-2, it has no effect on appetite nor on prolactin or cortisol, and is, in my opinion, the safest of the GHRP’s.

Finally, Hexarelin is the most potent of the GHRP’s, and is used to significantly bump GH release when combined with IGF.  While it’s less desirable for long term use as it has a high rate of desensitization, resulting long-term in a need for higher and higher amounts, it can be paired in lower doses with the other GHRP’s for more gains. If you’re doing a short cycle of peptides and GHRP’s, you can give Hexarelin a try – but I’d stay away from long term use.

When used in excessive quantities or excessive frequencies, or stacked incorrectly with the other compounds you’ll learn about in this article, all GHRP’s also share a few common negative side effects: specifically water retention, excessive sleepiness, tightness or carpel tunnel-like symptoms in the wrist/hand, numbness and tingling in the extremities, and a decrease in insulin sensitivity.

This is why GHRP-6 should be administered on an empty stomach (no food should be consumed for 15-20 minutes post-injection if maximum GH release is desired. In addition when using GHRP-6 for GH release, the average dosing range is between 100-150 mcg per injection and dosing frequency is between 1-4X per day. In order to get maximal elevations in GH, GHRP-6 should be combined with a GHRH, which you’ll learn more about shortly.

Ultimately, to maximize the effects of IGF, you should accompany any IGF use with a GHRP, and from what I’ve personally researched, the GHRP Ipamorelin appears to be the safest and most efficacious. Like the other GHRP’s, its primary function is to stimulate your pituitary gland to produce more growth hormone, and also like the other GHRPs, it has a two-fold mechanism of action, meaning that it causes an increase in GH through amplifying the natural growth hormone releasing hormone signal pathway, and also by suppressing the actions of somatostatin, which can lower growth hormone as you sleep.

Compared to IpamorelinGHRP-6 is inferior in that it activates a wider array of potentially undesirable effects beyond GH release, such as intense hunger and gastric motility, as well as inducing a mild effect on cortisol and prolactin. GHRP-2 is slightly less “sloppy” with a more intense GH release, and with less gastric motility and less hunger effect. Hexarelin gives a higher GH pulse, but induces some gastric motility and produces almost zero issues with hunger, although it requires a lot of cycling to avoid desensitization to it’s effects.

Ipamorelin is the best choice. Sure: it doesn’t release as much GH as the others, but it causes virtually no hunger or gastric motility, does not effect cortisol or prolactin and seems to be the safest choice (although it is the most spendy of the options).

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What Are GHRH’s?

GHRH stands for “Growth Hormone Releasing Hormone”, which admittedly seems like a mouthful of double talk, and in a way, it is. It’s literally a hormone (an amino acid peptide produced in the hypothalamus) that causes the release of another hormone. GHRH also stimulates any GHRP to increase the release of GH, and in addition, seems to have a significant positive effect on cognitive health.

The main form of synthetic GHRH that one would inject along with GH and GHRP is something called Mod GRF 1-29 (sometimes still referred to by its old name as “CJC1295 without DAC”).  The other most common type of GHRH is called “CJC1295Dac”, which I really don’t recommend because can only be used for four to five weeks at a time if you want to avoid permanent damage to your pituitary gland.  In almost all instances, Mod GRF 1-29 should be used in favor over CJC1295Dac.

In a nutshell, the main reason to use this a GHRH in conjunction with GHRP and GH is to cause an even greater increase in GH than you’d get if you used GH by itself, and also to minimize the negative side effects of using GH by itself. Remember what you learned earlier: GHRP’s release a pulse of GH, and then the GHRH’s release and amplify this pulse.

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How to Stack & Dose The Ultimate Growth Hormone Peptide Stack: IGF-LR3, GHRH & GHRP

OK, so now that you know all about GH, GHRP and GHRH, let’s delve into exactly how you would “stack” these compounds. The best results from any peptides, especially those designed for growth hormone and taken to improve anabolism, fat loss, physique or overall health, are to combine specific combinations of peptides all at the same time. Sure, you would get some improvement by using one peptide at a time, but stacking these things is really where it’s at when it comes to experiencing significant gains in a short period of time.

One of the most popular and reportedly efficacious peptide stacks for improving overall body appearance, losing fat, and gaining muscle in away that does not harm the pituitary gland or shut down your own natural production of Growth Hormone is a combination of IGF-1 LR3 (the GH) ,Mod GRF 1-29 (the GHRH), and Ipamorelin (the GHRP).

Here’s how it works:

Like any supplement, vitamin, or medication, each peptide has its own unique dosage instructions. Typically, you’ll purchase a month’s worth or “cycle’s” worth of the peptide in powdered form in a vial, “reconstitute” the peptide substance with the right amount of sterilized or bacteriostatic water, and then administer it via insulin syringe injection. If you have no clue how to reconstitute a powder with sterilized or bacteriostatic water, then simply click here to read my article on BCP-157, in which I spell it out in great detail, and include links to helpful calculators that tell you exactly how much water to use based on the size of the powder vial you have.

When the powdered form of your peptide is reconstituted, it will then be a liquid, and this liquid must be saved in a dark area, undisturbed except for when you are withdrawing some of the solution into the syringe for use, and preferably kept in the refrigerator or freezer in order to maintain the quality and effectiveness long term. Peptides are extremely fragile, and you have to take extra care of them or they just won’t perform the way they’re supposed to. So even if they’re in the refrigerator, try to keep them on or near or wrapped in bubble wrap, and in a place where someone won’t, say, knock them around while reaching for the milk.

IGF-1 LR3 can be taken every day of the week for about four weeks before your body becomes desensitized to the stuff and it loses its effectiveness. A good starting dose is 50mcg per day, but you can gradually increase this to 150mcg a day if you’re feel fine with none of the side effects listed earlier in this article (and if you do experience excessive tiredness, just do your injections prior to bed). IGF-1 LR3 gets injected directly into the muscle, or can be injected subcutaneously. And don’t be a baby – it only stings for a minute.

Do not take more than 150mcg of IGF-1 LR3 per day for four weeks, as high doses of IGF-1 have been shown to cause some pretty extreme hypoglycemia and blood sugar dysregulation. In some studies, IGF-1 increased tumor size in patients who already had cancer, but IGF-1 regulates the functioning of our heart, nervous system, and brain cells – so it does not seem to be the cause of cancer or contribue to something like tumor growth unless cancer already exists. So if you already have cancer, the results of these studies would lead me to stay away from IGF-1. Otherwise, I’m not concerned.

The next component of the stack is Ipamorelin. This one is most often injected by subcutaneous injection using an insulin syringe. The average dose of Ipamorelin is 200-300mcg, taken at two to three times per day. Most athletes and weightlifters take an Ipamorelin dose about forty minutes before a workout to get the best workout results, as it is going to kick in and help you power through a high-intensity workout such as weight training or high intensity cardio. Although you can also simply use Ipamorelin before bed along with IGF-LR3 and Mod-GRF, if you take it before workouts it will give you exactly what you need to do to push past those pesky plateaus and get the look you’re trying to achieve.

You can take Ipamorelin for twelve week cycles before it becomes ineffective or the risks for side effects increase. If you experience prolactin dysregulation or any signs of estrogen dominance when taking Ipamorelin, you can take aromatase inhibitors such as Aromasin or Letrozole along with an anti-prolactin aid like Cabergoline to reduce prolactin and symptoms from increases in estrogen. This should keep everything in balance so you can continue using Ipamorelin for the twelve week cycle, and will keep you from getting man boobs and excessively weepy during chick flicks. As you can imagine, this gets pretty complicated, this can get pretty complicated, so I recommend taking the lower doses of Ipamorelin and not ever taking it for more than twelve weeks. This is also important because high doses Ipamorelin taken for over twelve weeks can also cause an increase in cortisol.

But don’t get too scared. As I mentioned earlier, out of of all of the GHRP options out there, Ipamorelin is the mildest peptide available for targeting growth hormone (GH) release. It’s safer than some of other GHRP options because it doesn’t significantly affect important natural hormone levels such as FSH, TSH, PRL, or LH blood serum plasma levels the way GHRP-2 or GHRP-6 will.

To complete your peptide stack, you’ll need a GHRP, and the top peptide I recommend for this is Mod GRF 1-29. The use of a GHRP like this allows you to increase your body’s own production of growth hormone without taking excessive exogenous injected growth hormone. Mod GRF 1-29 is specifically known to help increase fat loss and increase muscle growth, improve the appearance of connective tissue and skin, and help you recover from injuries and workouts more quickly.

It’s also important to know that don’t have to cycle your use of Mod GRF 1-29, which means you can match your usage to your cycles of IGF-1 LR3 and GHRH, or you can use Mod GRF 1-29 all on it’s own whenever you need to slightly increase growth hormone levels in your body, such as during a mass gain phase or when you are injured. However, to maintain sensitization, if you are going to use Mod GRF 1-29 on an ongoing basis then make sure you are using the lower end of the recommended dose range, or taking the full-strength dosage just once per day right before you go to bed.

Mod GRF 1-29 is typically injected subcutaneously, intravenously, or intramuscularly, and it seems to be efficacious when administered in any of these ways. If you get a little nervous with needles or dislike experiencing too many injections per day or feel like a freaking pincushion, you can simply add multiple peptide solutions from your peptide stack to the same syringe to reduce the number of injections you need to do each day.

To get the maximum effect, you can inject a dose of 100 mcg of Mod GRF three times per day about thirty minutes before a meal (when insulin and blood sugar tends to be lowest), and incorporate it in a cycle along with the other peptides in this article for four to twelve weeks. If you’re simply going to use Mod GRF 1-29 on an ongoing, everyday basis, throughout the year in the absence of the other peptides in this article, then just take 100 mcg once per day, preferably right before you go to bed.

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Summary: How to Naturally Increase Growth Hormone & Where to Buy Peptides

OK, OK, I get it: some people want to get the results without injecting themselves with peptides. Some people can’t legally inject peptides. Needles and injections and synthetic hormones don’t sit well with everyone.

This is why, in the past, I’ve provided you with a number of articles about how to naturally increase growth hormone levels, including the most recent article I wrote about natural ways to increase IGF-1, whic includes tips such as including more quality sleep, decreasing alcohol consumption, increasing dairy consumption, using natural supplements such as colostrum and whey protein, sprinting and weight training.

Ultimately, you don’t have to sit back and let father time slowly peck away at you. If it’s legal, safe and efficacious, I’m a fan of better living through science, and the stack you’ve just discovered is one of the most potent ways to pull this off. ou’ll reduce your risk of many chronic illnesses, enhance your vigor and enjoyment of life, slightly slow the tick of the aging clock and perhaps more importantly, be stronger, sexier and more vigorous as you age.

If you do want to try a peptide stack, then you may be wondering where you’re supposed to get these mysterious substances. You can’t just waltz into your local Walgreen’s or GNC and buy them, nor can you find them on Amazon. They’re only sold from US suppliers for research purposes.  One of the more safe places to purchase peptides and research chemicals is from Peptides Warehouse, and if you want to know if what you’re getting is effective, just take a look at the bottom of the little glass bottle when it gets to you. The powder “puck” should be tight, packed and uniform, not clumped or broken. As you’ve learned, you still need to be quite careful when you reconstitute the powder, but this doesn’t matter if what you’re getting isn’t synthesized properly or isn’t handled carefully during shipping, so choose your source wisely.

Here’s the skinny on pricing and quantity:

Ipamorelin: 5mg typically runs about $32. Depending on your frequency of cycling and dosage, that will last you about three to six weeks. So for a full twelve week cycle, get three to four bottles.

Mod GRF 1-29: 2mg runs about $17, and will last for a similar period of time.  I’d recommend three to four bottles.

IGF-1 LR3: 1mg sells for about $66, and will last for a similar period of time. Same as above: three to four bottles.

Click here and use code “BGVIP10” at PeptidesWarehouse to get 10% off any order of any of the above in any quantity.

Do you have questions, thoughts or feedback about growth hormones, growth hormone precursors, growth hormone injections or anything else from this article? Share what’s working for you and what isn’t. Leave your comments and feedback and questions below. I promise to reply.

Mushrooms 101: Everything You Need To Know About The Psilocybin Psychedelics That Are Taking The Health World By Storm.

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This is a special Premium audio episode. Click here to activate a Premium subscription to the BenGreenfieldFitness show and access this and over 300 additional hidden audios, videos, pdf’s and more!

Psychedelic drugs such as MDMA (AKA “Ecstacy”) LSD and Psilocybin (AKA “magic” mushrooms) are very likely going to be the next set of drugs after marijuana to be destigmatized and potentially legalized, not necessarily because people are “partying more”, but instead largely due to research going back to the 1950s which has shown that these drugs have a significant positive effect on those with depression, anxiety, and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).

Psychedelics are supposedly able to disintegrate entrenched or destructive ways of thinking in people who have depression, anxiety and PTSD. And brain imaging has indeed shown that in the brains of PTSD patients who took MDMA, their primitive fear center responses shrunk while their rational thought processes overrode them — the opposite of how their brains normally function.

Even Silicon Valley executives are now taking microdoses of LSD to enhance creativity and productivity (a typical dose of LSD – enough to make a person hallucinate or trip – about 10 micrograms of LSD, and a microdose is about 1/10 of that dose). Rick Doblin, founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), claims people who microdose feel more energetic and insightful but don’t necessarily see the face of God inside their water coolers.

Just as with marijuana, I suspect we will continue to see the destigmatization of psychedelics if their proven health or cognitive benefits outweigh the prejudice against them. As more scientific data emerges on these drugs, they will probably become mainstream, if not for your average person, then definitely in a controlled, therapeutic setting by licensed professionals.

So if you’re not in-the-know about psychedelics, you should be. Enter today’s guest: Dr. William Richards. 

Dr. Richards (Bill) is a psychologist in the Psychiatry Department of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Bayview Medical Center, where he and his colleagues have been pursuing research with psilocybin, the active molecule in the so-called “sacred mushrooms”, for the past 16 years. His graduate degrees include M.Div. from Yale Divinity School, S.T.M. from Andover-Newton Theological School and Ph.D. from Catholic University, as well as studies with Abraham Maslow at Brandeis University and with Hanscarl Leuner at Georg-August University in Göttingen, Germany, where his involvement with psychedelic research originated in 1963.

From 1967 to 1977, he pursued psychotherapy research with LSD, DPT, MDA and psilocybin at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, including protocols designed to investigate the promise of entheogens in the treatment of alcoholism, severe neuroses, narcotic addiction and the psychological distress associated with terminal cancer, and also their use in the training of religious and mental-health professionals. From 1977-1981, he was a member of the psychology faculty of Antioch University in Maryland.

His publications began in 1966 with “Implications of LSD and Experimental Mysticism,” coauthored with Walter Pahnke. His latest book, Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences has just been released by Columbia University Press, and is described as “the first well-documented, sophisticated account of the effect of psychedelics on biological processes, human consciousness, and revelatory religious experiences”.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-How Dr. Richards personally uses psilocybin and other psychedelic compounds in his own life…[6:00 & 28:20]

-Why is it that research into psychedelic drugs seems to be growing in popularity, and why it waned in the first place…[7:00 & 18:00]

-Whether wandering through a cow’s field and picking mushrooms from dung is any different than what is being used in lab research…[22:50]

-What mushrooms have to do with sacred geometry, and why the kaleidoscope colors or visions one sees when on higher doses of psilocybin are related to these geometries…[41:50]

-Where you can “source” or grow your own psilocybin if you want to try it…[49:50]

-How you can combine psilocybin with other compounds to either increase or decrease their effect…[52:00]

-Psychedelics that Bill thinks “fly under the radar” but that more people should know about…[54:00]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences

Psilocybin research page 

The pharmacology of psilocybin study Ben mentions

The Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the Origins of Knowledge

EROWID.org

100% Sugar-Free Grapefruit Juice

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Dr. Richards or I? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

11 Ways To Biohack A Hotel Room, Stay Healthy When You Travel & Keep Globetrotting From Slowly Killing You.

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I just returned from Las Vegas, which isn’t necessarily recognized as a mecca of health. Fortunately, I wasn’t in Vegas to wander the strip drinking fructose-infused beverages from giant sippy drinks with curly straws, nor was I there to jump into cocaine-fueled pool parties with hookers and glowsticks, nor was I there to wake up in a trashed hotel suite with a tiger in my bedroom.

I was instead rolling through barbwire, mud and electroshock therapy while racing a Tough Mudder.

But even if you’re in Vegas for a (healthy?) activity like an obstacle race, the fact is, even if you “exercise and eat right” when you travel to places like Vegas, frequent travel to urban areas like this can leave you fighting brain fog, dealing with a compromised immune system, experiencing subpar sleep and digestive issues and having to hassle with a host of other deleterious effects on your body and brain.

And if you throw an obstacle race into the mix, as I’m prone to do, there may be a few barbwire skin punctures throw in for good measure.

So, at the risk of being a fear-mongerer on Halloween, I’ll admit that when it comes to globetrotting having the potential to slowly kill you, hotels are probably the biggest culprit (airplanes would be a close second, and, ironically, obstacle course racing a very distant third).

From mold and fungus in hotel air ducts and vents, to subpar hotel water chock full of birth control pills and pharmaceuticals, to copious amounts of dirty electricity and WiFi signals bouncing between hotel rooms and walls, I have had to personally pay very close attention to my hotel habits so that I maintain as optimal a level of body and brain performance as possible.

In this article, I’m going to share with you my most potent hotel room health survival tips, all based on photos that I snapped early this morning before heading to the airport. After your read, feel free to leave your own thoughts, tips, questions and feedback in the comments section below the post!


Tip 1: Buy Glass Water Bottles

When I’ve left the airport upon arriving at my final destination, I never drive or Uber directly to my hotel. Instead, I always make a quick ten-minute stop at a grocery store and buy at least two bottles of glass, sparkling water for each day that I am staying wherever I’m staying (along with my go-to staples: avocados, sardines, fresh tomatoes, a bag of dark leafy greens, raw almonds or other nuts/seeds and a few dark chocolate bars). No municipal water or funky hotel water for me. As for the hotel room coffeemaker, you may want to throw in a few bottles of non-sparkling water – but always glass, never plastic.

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Tip 2: Bring A Water Filter

In case you hadn’t noticed, glass bottled water in airports either isn’t available or is prohibitively expensive. Occasionally, you may not be able to hunt down good bottled water anywhere. And trust me, you don’t want to be sucking sewage-like H2O from the water fountain in airports, or other random places you may find yourself traveling without access to potable water. Enter a Berkey portable water filter, like that pictured below. I own six – enough for me to travel with one to two bottles, and to have enough for my family when I’m traveling with the kids and wife in tow. Simply add water and presto: you have pure, clean fluid that you suck out the straw at the top.

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Tip 3: Unplug Everything Behind The TV

Take a peek behind the TV in your hotel room. This is where you’ll most often find the WiFi router (if the router is in your hotel room, it is typically located behind the TV or behind the bed). This is where you’ll also find other light-emitting items you can unplug, like a radio, satellite receiver, DVD player, etc. This is important because research has shown that even tiny, seemingly trite lights, like the little blue light that the TV emits from near the power button, can disrupt your melatonin production and deleteriously affect sleep. So I unplug everything behind the TV, which also keeps me from wasting hours or burning out my retinas watching insipid, time-sucking television programs.

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Tip 4: Unplug the Alarm Clock

Same as the TV: unplug the alarm clock. You don’t want that tiny light the alarm clock emits disrupting your sleep, you can use the alarm on your phone (just be sure phone is in airplane mode), and you’ll create one less item to churn out bits of dirty electricity from the hotel wall electrical outlets near your heard. Plus, if you’re like me and you tend to wake up at night to pee, you aren’t bugged by instantly seeing what time it is and deliberating whether it’s worth getting back into bed or simply waking up to work.

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Tip 5: Unplug Everything Behind The Bed

Yes, I know I’m sounding like a broken record. But take a glance behind the bed. If the router is indeed located in your room and not behind the TV, that’s where you’ll find the WiFi router that you can unplug. Behind the bed is also where you can unplug the phone and other fancy electrical items the hotel may have furnished you with. Don’t get me wrong: the hotel staff are not villains out to ruin your health, but rather just innocent bystanders who don’t know that you actually would prefer to keep the electrical gradient of your cell membranes naturally charged, thank-you-very-much (read the book “The Body Electric” to understand what I mean).

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Tip 6: Bring A Converter

So if you have indeed unplugged the WiFi router, you of course won’t have access to internet unless you decide to tether to your phone. To address this issue, I’ll often only unplug the router at night, not during the day when I’m working. But if your hotel room actually has an ethernet cable port that allows you to connect ethernet to your computer via a firewire to ethernet converter like this, you can often forego use of a wireless signal altogether. Most of the time, the hotel front desk has a complementary ethernet cable they’ll loan to you for the duration of your stay, or you can keep one in your luggage.

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By the way, if you dig little tips like this for a hotel, home or office, you may also want to check out this video I shot a couple years ago about little ways I reduce electrical pollution in a typical office or computer working environment:


Tip 7: Lower The Room Temperature

Plenty of research has shown that deep sleep, sleep quality, sleep latency (how long it takes you to fall asleep) and sleep length can be improved if your body temperature is lower while sleeping. The “sweet spot” for temperature, based on feedback from some of the sleep experts I’ve interviewed (links at end of this article) is about 63-68 degrees Fahrenheit. So as soon as you walk into your hotel room, dial down the temperature and put the fan on high. Warning: fans churn out a lot of mold, fungus, and other germs that can be in hotel room vents, so if your travel budget permits, it is well worth it to travel with a mini air purifier you can place on your bedside table or nightstand.

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Tip 8: Close The Curtains

Tiny slivers of sunlight, streetlights, car lights, hotel lights on the exterior of the hotel, law enforcement flashing lights, etc. can all seep in through the cracks in the curtains and mess with your sleep, especially if you’re attempting to sleep in after a late night at a conference, adjusting to a new time zone, or staying somewhere where it gets light at 5am in the morning. So how do you keep those curtains truly closed? Grab a hanger from the hotel room closet, slap it between the curtains and voila! Darkness.

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Tip 9: Block Your Eyes

From harsh LED and fluorescent lighting, to hotel hall lights, to screen lights, to airport lights, to traffic lights, to the glare from your computer or phone, it’s very easy for your retinas to be constantly bombarded with light and for your body to be in “constant summer” mode when traveling, which is a far-from-ideal scenario for sleep and melatonin production. For this reason, a good pair of blue light blocking glasses and a full wraparound sleep mask are always present in my travel bag.

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Oh, and if you’re really, really serious about light, then you need to ensure that even your computer monitor is supporting your circadian biology, and here’s a quick video I shot last week about exactly how to do that using a special kind of software called “Iris“:


Tip 10: Use Relaxing Scents

Compared to popping a Valium or Ambien, it’s far more healthy to simply smear a bit of lavender or bergamot or rose or any other relaxing essential oil on your neck, trapezius, temples and upper lip. I am a fan of “rollers” like those pictured below, which allow for easy application of these oils. A blend that I highly recommend is “Peace & Calm” by Young Living essential oils, which is a sleep-inducing, calming blend of gentle, sweet blend of Ylang Ylang, Orange, Tangerine, Patchouli, and Blue Tansy oils. If you really want to take things to the next level, kill two birds with one stone, and both diffuse essential oils while simultaneously humidifying and cooling the dry and hot air in a hotel room, then travel with an all-in-one portable essential oil diffuser and humidifier.

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Tip 11: Have A “Go-To” Travel Workout

I always travel with highly portable fitness equipment, specifically a heavy resistance band like this that can be wrapped around bedposts or other stable objects (shown below), and a TRX-style suspension trainer like this that can be hung from the hotel door or any other overhead stable object. As the second photo below the resistance band photo shows damning evidence of, I also am not shy about stealing random items from the hotel gym (in this case, a stability ball, and in other cases, a kettlebell, dumbbells, foam roller, etc.), then returning said items to the gym when I check-out of the hotel.

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So what kind of workout do I do with these travel toys? Here’s an example of a hotel room workout for “getting ripped”, straight from a hotel room in Phoenix:

Also here’s an article I wrote about How To Workout In A Hotel. That, combined with the video above, ought to give you plenty of ideas.


Summary

If you like this kind of information and you want more, I’ve got four excellent podcasts for you that you can load up for your next road trip or airplane ride:

The Man Behind The Advanced Sleep Hacking Tactics Used By The World’s Most Elite Athletes.

Podcast #348: A 382 Day Fast, How To Biohack A Hotel, Chia Seeds vs. Flax Seeds, Carb Cycling For Fat Loss & More!

The Best Time Of Day To Exercise, Have Sex, Take Supplements, Read A Book, Take A Nap & More!

Sleep, Light, Alarms, Caffeine, Night Shifts, Naps, Sleeping Positions & More With Shawn Stevenson.

In the meantime, if you have questions, comments, feedback, or your own tips to add? Leave your thoughts below and I’ll reply!

The Weekly Roundup: Your Go-To Guide For Everything You May Have Missed This Week & More!

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Welcome to my brand new Weekly Roundup!

In one convenient post, you’re about to discover the most important things I’ve noticed this week, including the latest news from the fronts of fitness, nutrition, health, wellness, biohacking and anti-aging research, the top photos, videos and stories from this week, upcoming events and speaking appearances, giveaways, specials and a host of other things you may have missed.

Let’s do this!


Podcasts I Recorded This Week:

Why ADD And ADHD Are Good For You (And Supplements, Foods & Lifestyle Strategies To Help With ADD & ADHD).

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What Your Poop Can Tell You About Your Health, How To Heal Tendons & Ligaments Faster, Natural Ways To Decrease Cortisol & More!

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Popular Podcasts I Was On This Week:

I discussed my personal life with Hayden Wilson…

We explored my life journey, how I got to this point, what a ‘regular’ day looks like, some of the experiments I’ve taken ‘too far’, my podcasting journey of over 10 years, the 3 structured habits I live by, and much more.

Articles I Published This Week:

The Ultimate Guide To Biohacking Your Testosterone: 17 Ways To Maximize Muscle-Building, Libido & Anti-Aging.

Should You Use This Controversial Hormone Marketed As A Natural “Fountain Of Youth”?

This Week’s Inner Circle News:

Inside the Ben Greenfield Fitness Inner Circle, my private forum for personal interaction with me and my family, my amazing wife, Jessa Greenfield, released her October Inner Circle Healthy Home Workshop this week. Check out the cover below to see the topics, and click here to learn how to live a more creative, natural, and simplified life!oct-2016-hhw

Upcoming Events:

I was at the Spartan Ultra Beast in Tahoe and the National Endurance Sports Summit in New Jersey, and, for those of you who couldn’t make Tahoe or New Jersey, you can click here to RSVP and join me on October 29th For The Las Vegas Tough Mudder.

“… the hellish 24-hour endurance race, Tough Mudder Las Vegas features a challenging mix of desert mountains, lakefront scenery, and rocky terrain.”

You can click here to view the full Ben Greenfield Fitness calendar and all the events I will be at, and where you can join me for fun meetups, future events and conferences, races and more!

This Week’s Most Popular Instagram Pic:

Jessa and I got a little romantic in Kauai…

This Week’s Most Popular Tweet:

This Week’s Most Popular Facebook Post:

A little Throwback Thursday…

This Week’s Most Popular Snapchat Story:

I got a little crazy with ketones…

…but, as you may know, snapchat deletes stories after 24 hours of going live – you will have to follow me on Snapchat to find out why I drank $3000 of ketone esters and logged the whole experiment for you.

This Week’s Most Popular Pin from Pinterest:

We were running wild with OCR – no wonder our top pin was all about my buddy Hunter McIntyre, pro endurance athlete, Broken Skull winner, BoundlessTV co-host, obstacle course racing champion and self-described macho man.

Cool New Products:

The world’s top obstacle course racer, Hunter McIntyre, and me launched our new Obstacle Dominator – Obstacle Racing and Spartan Race Training Plan 2.0 (Full Digital Package).

“This is the groundbreaking, done-for-you obstacle training program designed by Greenfield Fitness Systems head coach Ben Greenfield and top Spartan athlete Hunter McIntyre. You can click here to go to the official page for this training package, or you can simply keep reading below to get details on all nine components of this complete obstacle racing and Spartan race training plan!”

…and, we’re running a $20 discount – the $97 Full Digital Package is only $77 until Oct 31st.

Obstacle Dominator 2.0

Click here for everything else I have created, including supplements, books, gear, and more.

And…This Week’s Big Giveaway:

We’re giving away a sauna. Yep, a full-on, giant infrared sauna…

…and you can click here to enter to win a Clearlight Saunctuary Full Spectrum Infrared Sauna!

Only Clearlight Saunas have no EMF or ELF exposure, a 100% Lifetime Warranty and 500w Full Spectrum heaters with near, mid and far infrared.

Free shipping to the Grand Prize Winner is included! (total value $5995) Winner will be announced on Ben’s mid-November upcoming sauna podcast.

Leave any questions, comments, or feedback below – or any news of the week that you think I should have added – and I will be sure to reply.  

Cheers,

Ben

Pulling 8,800 Pound Fire Trucks By The Hair, Juggling Flaming Kettlebells, Discovering Underground Herbs & More: Logan Christopher & The Lost Empire Herbs Podcast.

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Born without genetic gifts, my podcast guest today was once a weak and scrawny young man, who set out on a quest for the best body and brain secrets in his pursuit of super strength, mind power and radiant health. Nowadays, he’s known for his famous feats of pulling an 8,800 lb. firetruck by his hair, juggling flaming kettlebells, supporting half a ton in the wrestler’s bridge and more. He is the author of many books, a coach and a public speaker, and you can access all the goodness he how produces on his website “Lost Empire Herbs“.

His name is Logan Christopher.

And yes, I am serious – as a performing strongman, Logan has pulled an antique fire truck by his hair, juggled kettlebells that have been lit on fire, done weighted back flips, supported half a ton in a wrestler’s bridge position, and many of the more typical old-time strongmen feats like phonebook tearing and nail bending.

In today’s podcast, we delve into neurolinguistic programming, hypnotism, energy medicine, psychology, herbalism and beyond, and during our discussion, you’ll discover:

-What Logan discovered when he traveled to the Amazon jungle to spend time with indigenous people for two weeks…[4:50]

The tea that Logan drank every morning while in the jungle to induce vomiting each morning…[6:23]

-How you can recall and interpret dreams more effectively…[8:35]

-How Logan went from being a weak and scrawny kid to pulling 8,800 lb. firetruck by his hair…[14:00]

-The little-known strength training techniques Logan learned from old-timey strongmen training routines…[15:38]

-How Logan trained to juggle flaming kettlebells, and a simple trick to light a kettlebell on fire…[22:15 & 26:30]

-A trick called “sub-modalities” to get instant breakthroughs in strength and power, and to do exercises you haven’t been able to do before…[32:50]

-The three different forms of energy in Chinese medicine, and how to tap into each…[50:28]

-Why Ben puts black ant extract into his smoothies and shakes…[49:20]

-How to increase your prowess in the bedroom by not ejaculating and by using “jing” based herbs…[52:05]

-Why you may want to think twice about using the new “magical mushroom” formula purported to block bitter tastes…[60:10]

-An herbal root that most people don’t know about, but that has been used by Russian scientists and athletes for hundreds of years…[62:25]

-The Chinese root that keeps women “juicy”…[65:35]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

Dream Language: The Prophetic Power of Dreams, Revelations, and the Spirit of Wisdom

Achuar tribe of the Amazon

Guayusa herbal tea

Lost Empire Herbs (where you can get any of the herbal formulation that we discussed)

Food, Genes & Culture: Eating Right For Your Origins

The Mighty Atom: The Life and Times of Joseph L. Greenstein; Biography of a Superhuman

The Multi-Orgasmic Man

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Logan or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

How (& Why) To Eat More Vegetables, Why A Plant Is Like An Upside-Down Human, Little-Known Superfood Plants & More!

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

It’s not often I read a book that is less than 100 pages long and I fold over and highlight nearly every page.

But that was indeed the case when I read the book “How (& Why) To Eat More Vegetables“, a book with a very simple title but a very wide range of practical plant-eating information I’ve never seen published elsewhere, including little-known superfood plants, why humans are like an upside down plant, how to make extremely nutritionally dense vegetable powders and much more.

The book was written by the guest of this podcast: Dr. Tom Cowan.

Dr. Cowan discovered the work of the two men who would have the most influence on his career while teaching gardening as a Peace Corps volunteer in Swaziland, South Africa. He read “Nutrition and Physical Degeneration” by Weston A. Price, as well as Rudolf Steiner’s work on biodynamic agriculture. These events inspired him to pursue a medical degree and he graduated from Michigan State University College of Human Medicine in 1984. After his residency in Family Practice at Johnson City Hospital in Johnson City, New York, he set up an anthroposophical medical practice in Peterborough, New Hampshire. Dr. Cowan relocated to San Francisco in 2003.

Dr. Cowan has served as vice president of the Physicians Association for Anthroposophical Medicine and is a founding board member of the Weston A. Price Foundation™. During his career he has studied and written about many subjects in medicine. These include nutrition, homeoathy, anthroposophical medicine and herbal medicine.

He is the principal author of the book The Fourfold Path to Healing and is the co-author of The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care. He writes the “Ask the Doctor” column in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the foundation’s quarterly magazine, and has lectured throughout the United States and Canada. He has three children and three grandchildren and practices medicine in San Francisco, where he resides with his wife, Lynda Smith.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-Why a plant is like an upside-down human, carrots and roots are good for your sinus and head, leaves are good for your lungs, and flowers are good for your metabolic and reproductive systems…[15:30 & 19:12]

-Why Dr. Cowan believes that vegetables are vastly misunderstood and misused by modern “healthy” diets, such as the Paleo diet…[27:45, 32:50 & 45:00]

How commonly vilified foods such as beans and grains are actually good for you and a crucial part of an ancestrally appropriate diet…[29:35]

-Why you should seek out and learn to eat a special superfood vegetable called “Ashitaba”…[37:30]

-The little-known plant that can lower blood sugar more powerfully than the diabetic drug Metformin…[41:50]

-The fascinating tale of how the vegetable variety of “ancient Californians” compares to the vegetable variety of modern Californians today…[44:45 & 47:50]

-How the container that you store a vegetable or other food in can drastically affect the energy and nutrient bioavailability of that food…[51:30 & 52:50]

-Whether you should eat vegetables in their raw vs. cooked form…[56:35]

How to make vegetable powders from tomatoes that taste just like bacon…[60:35]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

The 2016 Weston A. Price Foundation conference

The Fourfold Path to Healing

The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care

Nutrition and Physical Degeneration

Biodynamic wine

Anthroposophic medicine

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Dr. Cowan or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

The Mysterious Kuwait Muscle-Building Phenomenon, The Too-Much-Protein Myth, Anabolic Triggering Sessions & More With The MindPump Podcast Crew.

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Meet the guys from MindPump podcast

The hosts – who traveled all the way up from San Jose to descend upon my my house in Spokane, Washington to record this podcast – claim to “pull back the curtain on the mythology, snake oil and pseudo-science that pervades the fitness industry and present science-backed solutions that result in increased muscular development and performance while simultaneously emphasizing health.”

Take a gander at these fellas…as they seem to have the body composition and transformation equation pretty well figured out. They include…

Sal DiStefano…

Sal was 14 years old when he touched his first weight and from that moment he was hooked. Growing up asthmatic, frequently sick and painfully skinny, Sal saw weightlifting as a way to change his body and his self-image. In the beginning, Sal’s body responded quickly to his training but then his gains slowed and then stopped altogether. Not one to give up easily, he began reading every muscle building publication he could get his hands on to find ways to bust through his plateau. He read Arnold’s Encyclopedia of Bodybuilding, Mentzer’s Heavy Duty, Kubrick’s Dinosaur Training, and every muscle magazine he could find; Weider’s Muscle and Fitness, Flex, Iron Man and even Muscle Media 2000. Each time he read about a new technique or methodology he would test it out in the gym. At age 18 his passion for the art and science of resistance training was so consuming that he decided to make it his profession and become a personal trainer. By 19 he was managing health clubs and by 22 he owned his own gym. After 17 years as a personal trainer he has dedicated himself to bringing science and TRUTH to the fitness industry.

Adam Schafer…

Adam Schafer is a IFBB men’s physique Pro and fitness expert. Adam made his entrance into the fitness world 14 years ago and has continued to send shock waves throughout the community ever since. He is a man of many talents who wears many hats. He is first and foremost a certified fitness expert who has an insatiable desire to help people in need of major lifestyle changes and daily accountable motivation. He is also incredibly driven entrepreneur and business minded individual with a vision that continually challenges his colleagues and peers to think bigger and achieve more.

Justin Andrews…

Justin has an incredible passion to disrupt the personal training industry and create ground breaking programs and tools that fitness professionals and clients alike can benefit from. The fitness industry in general needs a massive face lift to speak more to the generation growing up with a more advanced technology tool kit. Justin’s approach is to create programs that utilize technology as it advances and cut through the millions of options people face everyday when seeking specific information relating to their fitness needs. The great thing about where we are today is how easy it is to access information, the bad part about accessing all this information is how much misinformation is out there to weed through. As a health and fitness professional with a proven track record here in the heart of the Silicon Valley, Justin Andrews will keep working tirelessly to keep people educated and connected to quality personal trainers long into the future.

Doug Egge…

Doug received his first gym membership as a gift from his dad when he was 16 years old. Rocky III had just come out and he was determined to build a body like Stallone. It never happened. Despite following the advice of muscle magazines and busting his butt in the gym, Doug saw minimal gains over the next 30 years. Then he was introduced to Sal Di Stefano by his chiropractor who recommended he work with Sal to eliminate muscle imbalances that were causing lower back issues. Sal’s unique approach, often 180 degrees different from what Doug had read in books and magazines, produced more results in a matter of months than he had experienced in the 30 years prior. Doug with an extensive marketing and media production background, recognized Sal’s unique gift and perspective was missing from the fitness world and suggested that they should join forces. Doug and Sal have since produced life-altering programs such as the No BS 6-Pack Formula and MAPS Anabolic. Doug is very pleased to have the opportunity to work with Adam and Justin as Producer of MindPump.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-Why bodybuilders are traveling to Kuwait and mysteriously coming back with 20+ pounds of extra muscle…[17:00]

-The truth about underground muscle building supplements like SARMS, Clomid, injectable testosterone and more…[23:20 & 30:10]

-Why old-timey strength training protocols could be the best way to build strength compared to new-school bodybuilding protocols…[34:00 & 41:00]

-How to do an “anabolic triggering session”…[52:00]

-Why you need far less protein than you think…[59:30]

-The biggest myths in the fitness industry…[67:40]

-And much more…

Click here to check out the special “MAPS” workouts and programs that the guys from MindPump have created. Do you have questions, comments or feedback for the MindPump team or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

The Ultimate Guide To Biohacking Your Testosterone: 17 Ways To Maximize Muscle-Building, Libido & Anti-Aging.

how to biohack testosterone

Allow me to introduce you to my Finnish friend Dr. Olli Sovijärvi, MD, pictured above. 

I first mentioned Olli in my article “21 Unfamiliar Nutrition Tricks I Discovered In The Biohackers’ Handbook.”, and then again in “Never Get Sick Again: 13 Underground Immune Boosting Strategies You’ve Probably Never Heard Of.

So why am I so seemingly obsessed with Olli and his strange nutrition, immunity, and, as you’re about to discover, testosterone-boosting tactics?

First, he is a beast of a powerlifter.

Observe him in action in this preview video for the November 18 Biohackers’ Summit in Helsinki, Finland (use 10% discount code BEN).

Second, he is a medical doctor. That’s right: he works in his clinic with patients day in and day out and is friggin’ steeped in a combination of research and practice. He’s not some kid with a neck beard sitting in his mom’s basement googling PubMed articles.

Third, he’s constantly on my mind because I wake up each morning to texts like this:

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Or this:

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Or this:

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So finally, when I got the text above, I told Olli,

“Look man…most people have no clue you can shine laser lights on your balls to increase your testosterone, or that there are ways to reverse the damage cell phones can wreak on your gonads, or that once you drop below 30% carbs your testosterone starts to severely decline if you’re an avid exerciser…

…so, can you write an article for me with all these tactics?”

So Olli did just that.

And what you are about to read is the result: 17 of Olli’s best known tactics for increasing testosterone  – some of them proven and basic strategies and others fringe techniques I’ve never heard of until now.

Enjoy, leave any questions, comments or feedback below the post, and if you enjoy this stuff, then check out his Biohacker’s Handbook, which dives deep into immunity, sleep, nutrition, exercise, the function of the mind and much more in 530+ pages of the best biohacking tips I’ve ever discovered.

Take it away Olli…

—————————

Most Testosterone Advice Sucks

Biohacking testosterone (AKA “T”) has been a hot topic the past few years. Er, decades. Er, centuries. Perhaps technology and social media has just made what men and women have possibly pursued since the dawn of time just a bit more in our faces.

Just look at it: YouTube is full of T-optimizing videos and channels, iTunes has entire podcasts devoted to libido and testosterone, broscience forums are chock full of T advice from around the planet, there are entire T-boosting websites jam-packed with linkbait and ads and…

…don’t even get me started on supplement companies, who mostly source cheap herbs from Asia, shove them into a bottle, and produce a very, very sexy website designed to get you to empty your wallet to pop some magical T-boosting pill.

And yeah, you can find plenty of research articles on optimizing T and even a bunch of books and e-books have been released. I have read and studied all of them and beyond. Honestly: I am a consummate geek. I spend my entire day either treating patients or hanging out with my wife or baby, or sending Ben Greenfield strange texts.

And these apparently promising supplements, pills and tricks sound good, but simply don’t work. Yep…they don’t work, or they raise your T so miniscule-ingly low that you’re basically spending hundreds of your hard-earned dollars on pretty much next-to-nothing when it comes to an actual significant boost. You would be shocked at the amount of bloodwork I see that shows me men and women who are doing everything they read on the internets to boost testosterone with barely a bump in total or free levels of this hormone.

But at the same time, I’ll admit that there are some legimiate folks out there producing testosterone enhancing advice. I am very grateful for the amazing work on optimizing testosterone put out by guys behind the Anabolic Men website (especially Ali Kuoppala) from whom I have learned a lot.

Thanks also to Christopher Walker, a neuroscientist who has written a significant amount of information on testosterone, especially training wise (e.g., google “THOR”, “Testosterone I/O”, “Testshock”, etc.).

And I also want to thank a bunch of Finnish medical colleagues and friends who I’ve spent copious amounts of time with sitting naked in a Finnish sauna, followed by cold plunges into the Baltic sea, followed by intellectually stimulating conversations on all things testosterone (yeah, if you’re reading you know who you are).

Still, all these tricks you’re about to discover, especially those presented later in the article, are tactics I have had to dig deep from the depths of PubMed and literally spent hours and hours of reading every possible study that could potentially find in terms something new about one of the most important and studied hormones that exists for both men and women.

You could say that I am mildly infatuated with testosterone. My latest T (total) was 32 nmol/l (922 ng/dl). As you can see from the studies cited here, that’s high compared to the total T of 300-600 most guys these days have. And I have a newborn baby to prove it that my T is serving me well. Here she is, crawling through our backyard here in Helsinki…

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Before we jump into these many-probably-never-heard-of-biohacks on optimizing your T, I want to make sure that you have the basics covered. Yep, the boring basics. Without these, which include things like an adequate fitness training system, nutrition, sleep and stress management, these strategies won’t be near as solid as they could be. You can read more about optimizing sleep, nutrition, stress and exercise from Biohacker’s Handbook (of which head author I am).

Note from Ben: if you read the parenthetical section above, you will know that Olli, because he is Finnish, sometimes talks like Yoda. Don’t worry, you’ll get used to it).

——————-

The Testosterone Basics

Testosterone is basically just an anabolic sex steroid hormone, mainly released in the Leydig cells of the testes in men (95%) and the ovaries and adrenal glands of women. Yes, testosterone is not just a male hormone, and women also produce, but at lower magnitude. Actually, men have roughly about 10 times more testosterone than women. Testosterone is derived from cholesterol, which is also known as “the mother of all steroids” (and why low-cholesterol diets and statins suck for most hormone and steroid optimizing goals).

Testosterone is responsible for men’s sexual characteristics: it stimulates the growth of penis and scrotum, increases growth of body and facial hair (which is otherwise highly genetically regulated…so little body hair doesn’t automatically mean low T, as we can all testify to upon seeing the actor “The Rock”), impacts the ability to put on muscle mass and lose fat and even affects the tone of the voice by strengthening vocal cords. Yep, you read right. If you have a low voice and you’re bald, like Bane from Batman, you might actually be genetically equipped to produce more T, which seems quite unfair for all those high-pitched white guys with man-fros.

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Testosterone is also an anti-aging hormone, which means that a healthy level of testosterone throughout your life can make you live longer. As a matter of fact, in men aged 30 years and older, testosterone levels steadily fall at a rate of about 1% per year, and no amount of palette painting appears to be able to halt that decline.

OK, for this next brief section…if you are simply drooling from the corners of your mouth to learn how to increase your testosterone, then feel free to skip it. But if you actually want to know how your darling testes (or ovaries for you ladies) actually make T, or want some impressive words to throw around at a cocktail party, then check out how testosterone actually works.

——————-

How Testosterone Works

How testosterone works really isn’t too complex.

There is a feedback loop from your brain to your testes (or ovaries), and it controls how much testosterone is being released. The physiological regulation of testosterone begins in your hypothalamus, a section of your brain which releases gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH).

That GnRH then stimulates the pituitary gland to release two crucial hormones for male health: follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). In the testes, FSH stimulates spermatogenesis (making new sperm cells) and LH stimulates testosterone production. In turn, testosterone exerts feedback control of the pituitary LH and FSH secretion, meaning if you’re not producing enough testosterone, and your feedback loop is working properly, you’ll churn out more LH and FSH. And if you’re making too much testosterone, you’d downregulate LH and FSH. Once you’ve made your testosterone, it can be further converted to dihydrotestosterone or estradiol.

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Anyways, this produced testosterone enters your blood stream as free testosterone, which is the biologically available form of T. The majority (about 98%) of the produced testosterone is then bound to sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) or albumin (another major protein in the blood). For testosterone to become ”active” you would need a release of it from the carrier protein, and optimal SHGB levels in the blood so that not too much of it is bound to SHBG.

For testosterone to have an anabolic effect in the body it must bind to an androgen receptor (for example, in muscle tissue). Heavy strength training actually activates these androgen receptors, and free, bioavailable testosterone is then able bind to free androgen receptor sites. After that begins a cascade in the cell which eventually enters DNA and initiates protein synthesis and anabolism. Therefore, it is crucial to have a good androgen sensitivity and androgen receptor density (you’re about to get a whole bunch of hacks for that).

Testosterone is also a hormone that plays a key role in carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism. That is why it has a major influence on body fat composition and muscle mass, especially in males and to a lesser extent in females. This is also why research has over and over again shown that testosterone deficiency is related to various metabolic health problems such as increased visceral fat mass (also known as “central adiposity”), reduced insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance, leading to metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and even cardiovascular disease (CVD). Testosterone deficiency has been reported in population studies to be associated with an increase in all-cause mortality (mainly linked to CVD). In the meantime, healthy levels of testosterone also protect from cognitive decline.

So, duh, testosterone is pretty much good. You probably wouldn’t be reading if you didn’t suspect that.

Alright, enough with the geekery. Let’s delve into the first part of my tips – basic lifestyle hacks for high testosterone…

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Basic Lifestyle Hacks For High Testosterone

  1. Sleep enough — often more is better

The majority of the daily testosterone release in men occurs during sleep. Fragmented sleep and obstructive sleep apnea are associated with reduced testosterone levels. A study released on The Journal of the American Medical Association, found out that one week of sleep restriction (5 hours of sleep per night) decreased testosterone production by 10–15%.

Studies have also found out that sleep’s effect on testosterone has an inverted U-shaped curve. Testosterone production increased with increasing sleep duration up to 10 hours after which it decreased.

For my ultimate sleep hacks, check out my Biohacker’s Handbook’s sleep chapter for free here.

  1. Get rid of extra belly fat and be lean

It is generally noted in research that the higher your body fat percentage, the lower your testosterone. The correlation works especially in the direction of getting leaner, which will instantly raise your T levels. Longitudinal analyses showing no influence of baseline hormone levels on change in anthropometric measures imply that body composition affects hormone levels and not the reverse. Yep, you read right. Being lean gives you high testosterone more than high testosterone makes you lean.

But you don’t need to be an emaciated marathoner. Instead, it has been roughly estimated that a male body fat percentage between 8–14% is optimal for testosterone production. Higher fat mass also usually increased aromatase enzyme activity, which converts more testosterone into estrogen.  In opposition, too low body fat content can be detrimental for testosterone production.

  1. Practice strength training and gain some muscle mass

While practicing strength training and gaining muscle often reduces body fat percentage (which leads into higher testosterone), it also has independent effect on elevating testosterone. Having higher muscle mass is positively correlated with higher testosteroneLifting medium-heavy weights explosively can stimulate short-term and long-term testosterone productionTraining progressively by adding more weight nearly every time you train causes your body to adapt to higher and higher testosterone levels via neuromuscular adaptations.

Follow these basic principles when strength training for optimal T production:

  • Always lift explosively (with perfect form)
  • Lift heavy enough, but not too heavy (to have an optimum force/velocity-curve)
  • Use compound lifts to activate large amounts of muscle mass
  • Focus on body parts that have high density of androgen receptor sites (chest, shoulders, trapezius)
  • Do sprint intervals to maximize force production in minimal time and to activate fast-twitch muscle fibers
  • Do as much work on as much muscle tissue as possible in as short amount of time as possible while staying under the negative stress threshold
  • If your gym is limited, the muscle up exercise is, in my opinion, the king of testosterone-boosting exercises
  1. Control your stress levels and meditate

Chronic stress leads eventually into chronically elevated stress hormone (cortisol) levels in the blood. Cortisol is necessary for life, but when excreted too much for too long, it can cause some serious health problems. One of the disadvantages is diminished testosterone secretion, as cortisol and testosterone compete of the same hormonal precursors and raw materials (mainly pregnenolone). For example in military conditions prolonged stress has been shown to significantly lower testosterone secretion.

Implement these potent strategies (some of my favorites) into your life to lower stress – you can click on the links for more research, by the way:

  1. Eat nutrient dense whole foods and get enough (but not too many) calories

Let’s start with micronutrients.

Getting enough and optimal amount of micronutrients is crucial for testosterone production. Measuring your micronutrient status is a crucial step on finding out what your exact situation is. The most important micronutrients for testosterone production are zinc, magnesium, calcium, vitamin D, B vitamins, iodine, selenium, vitamin K2, vitamin A, vitamin E, manganese and boron.

Eating a diet rich in nutrients and minerals (read: whole foods) is crucial not just for overall health, but also for optimal T production. Getting a high micronutrient multivitamin supplement on the basis of your personal needs can also be a testosterone saving thing if your diet is lacking something.

Next comes calories.

Your body needs enough calories to produce adequate amounts of testosterone. With constant and prolonged calorie restriction the body begins to adapt into survival mode, which means that for example reproductive system is not of great importance anymore. The body will conserve energy for vital processes and internal organs.

For optimal testosterone production it is wise to eat at maintenance or a slight calorie surplus. But if you are overweight, a minor calorie deficit and losing weight will actually elevate testosterone production (as explained previously). So, the plan is to get lean first and then eat higher calories for optimal testosterone production and maintenance. Losing weight slowly is a good option here: about 15% calorie deficit doesn’t seem to affect testosterone negatively. But it can affect somewhat negatively your thyroid hormone production.

Finally comes macronutrients, AKA “macros”.

And when it comes to macros, nearly everybody, especially in the fitness industry, talks about protein. There are tons of different protein supplements that are supposed to make you lean and fit. Protein has gained a reputation that it is the most important macronutrient when it comes to building muscle and gaining strength. It is certainly true that protein and especially certain amino acids are essential for life and muscle tissues and that chronic protein malnutrition will cause low testosterone levels.

The caveat here is that you don’t actually need as much protein as you have been told. For most, the recommended daily allowance levels (1.0–1.4 g /kg of bodyweight) are enough for optimal testosterone production. For strength training individuals often recommended protein intake is 1.6–1.8 g / kg of bodyweight. Even athletes that practice strength training do not benefit from extra protein intake (over 2.0 g / kg of bodyweight).

For example, Ben Greenfield simply eats 0.5-0.7g protein per pound of body weight on easy exercise days and 0.7-0.8 grams per pound on hard exercise days. Easy enough, eh?

Protein source is also a major factor in testosterone production. A study published in British Journal of Nutrition found out that for example when meat was replaced with soybean protein in healthy men, the testosterone:estradiol ratio decreased significantly. Yes, steak beats edamame, hands down.

For optimal testosterone production it also seems crucial that you don’t eat too much protein and that you eat enough carbohydrates and fat. One study which compared protein and carbohydrate changes and their hormonal effects found out that when the male subjects went 10-days on a high-protein low-carb diet, their total testosterone levels were 21% lower than what they would have been on a high-carbohydrate low-protein diet. The high-protein diet also caused significantly higher cortisol levels. The diets were equal in total calories and fat.

Another study, which compared ratios of protein to carbohydrates to different fats, found out that diets higher in carbohydrates and saturated+monounsaturated fats than protein were related to higher testosterone production in strength training men. Previous studies have also found out that men who consume a diet containing 20% of fat compared with diets containing 40% fat have significantly lower concentrations of testosterone in the blood. Many other studies also show that getting enough fat from diet is crucial for testosterone production. Also, getting enough cholesterol (raw material for steroid hormone production) from your diet is critical to optimal hormonal balance.

For men who exercise and especially those who perform an intensive training micro-cycle, it is crucial to eat enough carbohydrates (CHO) to optimize testosterone production. In one study two groups (30% of CHO vs 60% of CHO) were compared in terms of testosterone-to-cortisol-ratio. The study found out that those who ate 60% of carbohydrates had significantly higher free testosterone to cortisol -ratio than the lower carbohydrate group.

The bottom line is this: for optimal testosterone production you shouldn’t go too low in calories (neither too high), shouldn’t consume too much protein (under 2g/kg) or eat too little carbs and too little saturated and mono-unsaturated fats. For me personally, the optimal ratio for T production seems to be on a 2500 kcal/day slight deficit diet with 98 kg bodyweight looks like this:

  • 1.8g protein/ bodyweight (1.8g x 98 = 176.4 grams = 720 kcal)
  • 40% of total calorie intake fat (1000 kcal = 111 grams)
  • Rest of the daily energy need from carbohydrates ( 780 kcal = 195 grams)

That means also eating quite a bunch of carbohydrates, and yet at under 200g carbs this example would still be among conventional nutrition advisors called a “low carbohydrate diet”.

Finally, for actual food sources, you can read from the Anabolic Men’s site the scientific basis for the most important foods that boost testosterone production. Based on that, here are my top 12 foods that satisfy the criteria above:

Here are a couple bonus additions that are daily staples for me: Celtic sea salt & high-altitude single-origin water-washed coffee.

I would suggest that you check out Biohacker’s Handbook’s Nutrition chapter for more information on how to optimize your personal diet.

  1. Drink enough water and hydrate yourself

Getting enough clean, mineral-rich water is not only crucial for life, but also for optimal hormonal balance. For example even mild dehydration (1–2%) can raise cortisol levels and deleteriously effect testosterone production. Especially when sweating a lot and during periods of heavy exercise, the importance of drinking water for testosterone maintenance is increased. The higher the level of the dehydration, the bigger the effects are on raising cortisol (and adrenaline) and lowering testosterone.

On the other hand, drinking too much water will also cause problems, such as diluting the blood and messing up with sodium balance in the body – even leading to hyponatremia (more precisely hypervolemic hyponatremia, or water intoxication) which, when severe, can cause numerous neurological and cardiovascular symptoms. So if you drink a lot of water, I recommend you add sea salt to prevent water retention and electrolyte disturbances.

The easiest way to estimate your hydration status is to analyze the color of your urine and the feeling of thirst. If your urine is diluted and pale in color, you have probably drank too much water. Ben has a pretty comprehensive article on this called “10 Things Your Pee Can Tell You About Your Body”. Also, if you feel a thirsty, you should know that you are already in a state of mild dehydration.

And for Pete’s sake, don’t drink plastic bottled water if you don’t want to jack up your estrogen levels. Stick to good spring water, filtered water, well water or glass bottled water.

  1. Have regular sex, but don’t ejaculate too often

There hasn’t been any extremely convincing studies on sex frequency and testosterone correlation in young men. However, one big observational study conducted with 1226 older men (aged 70+) found that regular sex helped to diminish the decline in testosterone level that occurs naturally with age. The study says:

We found a consistent association among older men followed over 2 years between the decline in sexual activity and desire, but not in erectile function, with a decrease in serum T. Although these observational findings cannot determine causality, the small magnitude of the decrease in serum T raises the hypothesis that reduced sexual function may reduce serum T rather than the reverse.

One small study also found out that men having sex in a sex club had an average increase of 72% of salivary testosterone after sex. I am not endorsing sex club visitations as a staple in your daily routine, but I’m just sayin’. In the meantime, those at the sex club who were just masturbating and watching sexual acts raised T only by 11%.

One sexual performance anecdote, mainly derived from athletes, is that sex the previous day or even many days before competition somehow hinders performance. But this topic has actually been researched and busted as a myth.

For example, one study comparing the maximal effort on cycle ergometer found out that having sex 2 hours before athletic performance slightly diminished recovery capacity, while having sex 10 hours before the event had absolutely no effect on performance or recovery. Another study found out that having sexual intercourse 12 hours prior to maximal treadmill effort didn’t have any negative (nor positive) effects on performance.

On the other hand, in traditional Chinese medicine it is common knowledge that ejaculation can more rapidly deplte Qi (Chi), your life force. This also makes sense, since sperm contains the seeds of life and plenty of minerals too. But this topic has also been researched by scientists.

One study found out that a short-term abstinence of sex (3 weeks) slightly increased testosterone. Another small study (28 healthy men) could actually verify, that an optimal ejaculation frequency for men testosterone-wise is actually 7 days. The study found that on the 7th day of abstinence, there was a significant increase in testosterone production (146%).  But too long a period of abstinence (e.g. over 3 months) can actually crash your testosterone production.

So drawing all these studies and anecdotes together, it appears that having sex once a week with a real partner is the best way of elevating your testosterone production.

  1. Avoid exposure to endocrine disruptors in plastics, food & water

Endocrine disruptors are synthetic chemicals or natural substances that can alter the endocrine system. Ben talked about plenty of these in his latest “How To Detox Your Home” article.

Many of the endocrine disruptors are either directly negatively affecting  testosterone production or acting as estrogen mimics (like xenoestrogens). These are mainly found in plastics, metal food cans, detergents, flame retardants, toys, pesticides, preservatives, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. They have also been linked to many other health problems like cancer, decreased fertility, metabolic syndrome, hypothyroid and diabetes.

So first, avoid these substances, period.

  • BPA (Bisphenol A)
    • Found in plastics; can lower testosterone levels significantly and cause erectile dysfunction
  • BPS (Bisphenol S)
    • Marketed as a ”safer” alternative to BPA found in thermal receipts, plastics and household dust.
    • Has the same negative endocrine effects as BPA
  • Phtalates
    • Found in plastics and cosmetics
    • Men having high phtalates in the urine have lower testosterone levels
  • Parabens
    • Found especially in sun lotions, moisturizers, shampoos, tooth pastes and in other cosmetics as a preservative
    • Function as a xenoestrogen in the body elevating estrogen levels in men (and women)
  • Triclosan & triclocarban
  • Benzophenones (BP-1, BP-2 & BP-3)
    • Found mainly in sunscreens functioning as UV filters
    • Can possibly lower testosterone by antagonizing androgen receptors (in English, blocking the receptor sites) and blocking enzymes converting other androgens to testosterone

The number one way to reduce your exposure to these endocrine disruptors is to avoid the use of plastics as well as you can with the following strategies:

  • Switch plastic cups to glass or steel cups & bottles (glass would be optimal)
  • Store leftover food in glass jars
  • Aquire a good tap filter that filters all contaminants and endocrine disrupters (e.g. reverse osmosis & activated charcoal filters)
  • Use only organic & natural ingredient cosmetics
  • Avoid junk food and prefer organic food
  • Minimize the handling time with receipts or use gloves
  • Avoid the use of detergents and flame retardants (and other possible endocrine disrupting chemicals)
  1. Raise your basic aerobic physical activity (but don’t do too much endurance training)

Being physically inactive is quite deleterious to your testosterone production. It has been shown in various studies that sedentary men who engage in regular physical activity instantly raise their testosterone levels and do it quite significantly.

For example a 12-week period of increased physical activity in a group of obese men showed significant increase in testosterone levels independent of accompanied weight loss induced by a mild calorie deficit. This means that a basic low-level physical activity like walking is an independent testosterone boosting factor! On the flipside, too much endurance training has been shown to lower testosterone levels significantly. One interesting fact is that in endurance athletes, low T is an independent factor (possibly impairing testicular function) which is not even related to chronically elevated cortisol levels.

  1. Increase your androgen receptor density

Besides optimizing testosterone production for optimal actual hormone signaling, you also need to have a good amount of androgen receptors in your body. Below are some the most researched ways to increase your androgen receptor density.

-Intermittent fasting (IF) and longer fasts

The easiest way to prime your androgen receptors for optimal testosterone uptake is intermittent fasting. Simply skipping your breakfast and pushing the first meal of the day as far as you can is a method that works very well. A small study showed that a fast of 12 to 56 hours improved testosterone response up to 180% in lean, but not in obese men.

Another study found out that after 10 day water fast, testosterone showed a downward trend of approximately 15–20%. When re-feeding after the prolonged fast with normal meals, the participants’ testosterone levels went up significantly higher than before the fasting baseline values. One guy even went from around 600 ng/dl to 1600 ng/dl! The explanation for this phenomenon is that fasting primes your body to be more receptive to testosterone, which means higher androgen receptor sensitivity.

Warning: If you are under a chronic stress and have super high cortisol levels all day long, a prolonged 16+ hour fast might not be your thing.

-Coffee (especially when fasting)

Coffee blunts hunger, which makes fasting easier. The caffeine in coffee can raise testosterone levels before exercise especially when tired (4mg/kg dosage) and after exercise (240 mg dosage).

-Explosive resistance training

There are basic resistance training principles that you should follow to optimize your androgen receptor density. First, activate large amounts of muscle mass with big compound movements. Second, do every movement as explosively as possible while maintaining a proper form. Third, keep workouts intense and short to avoid excess cortisol release. Fourth, use progressive loading with training (e.g. microloading). Research has shown that men who do resistance training regularly have higher androgen receptor density than untrained men.

-L-carnitine

Carnitine in is a lipid transporter molecule that moves ingested dietary fat via carnitine-acyl-transferases into mitochondria to be oxidized into energy (beta-oxidation). It will also increase androgen receptor activity in cells by providing energy for the receptors.

A 3-week supplementation with 2 grams L-carnitine L-tartrate (LCLT) per day has been shown to upregulate androgen receptor content after exercise, which promotes better recovery from training.  Another 3-week supplementation study showed that LCLT reduced the amount of exercise-induced muscle tissue damage, which also meant that a greater number of receptors would be available for hormonal interactions.

-Mucuna

Based on in vitro and animal studies, mucuna pruriens, which contains L-dopa (3–6 %) has a potential of increasing androgen receptor density. I would still be careful with this, because overusing L-dopa may have some side effects such as hypotension, nausea, disorientation and sleepiness. These are more likely if you just use L-dopa medication instead of mucuna pruriens.

-Forskolin

Also based on in vitro studies, forskolin, which functions as a cAMP activator and further as a PKA stimulator, can stimulate also the density of androgen receptors. There is also a placebo-controlled human study on forskolin on its effects on recovery and testosterone production. The study has been criticized  by many because of the authors’ interest in supplement business and the authors’ providing their own forskolin product. Forskolin may also cause hepatic side effects if the dosage is too high for too long.

Here is a conclusion on forskolin drawn together by Suppversity:

”…the almost non-existent human data on the purported testosterone boosting effects, this should be reason enough not to buy more than one bottle for a test-run. After which I highly suggest to do some lab work to see if whatever good or bad you believe you are feeling is an actual boost in T (check T-levels) or hepatic side effects (check ALT, AST & ALP).”

  1. Use creatine every day

Probably everyone who has trained with weights has heard of creatine. It is literally everywhere: in the gyms, in natural stores, supplement sites and even in normal grocery stores. Creatine monohydrate is not a new supplement, but rather an old one – the earliest studies on creatine and performance come from the early 1990s.

Creatine is already naturally occurring in red meat and in almost all vertebras. It functions in skeletal muscle energy production by increasing the amount of ATP in the cells. The specific energy system it is used in is your “creatine-phosphate” or “phosphagen” system. In your cells, creatine phosphate (CP) donates a phosphate to ADP to produce ATP. Your creatine phosphate system activates in short and intense bursts of exercise (around 5-8 seconds).

The research behind creatine is incredibly massive. There are nearly 100 peer-reviewed human studies showing that it increases strength, muscle mass and power and affects positively on body composition and sports performance. Quite a few studies have also shown that supplementing with just 5 grams of creatine per day increases testosterone and DHT significantly. Especially when beginning with the supplementation the elevation on DHT is especially high. One study showed that creatine also helped to diminish potential harmful effects of short-term overtraining while maintaining higher testosterone levels compared to those who didn’t supplement with creatine.

Longer term usage of creatine has not been shown to have any negative or adverse health effects. An overall trend towards higher testosterone serum levels has been also observed (on average from baseline of 17 nmol/l to 26 nmol/l).

One caveat: there was one review done in 2011 concluded that ”…high-dose (>3-5 g/day) creatine supplementation should not be used by individuals with pre-existing renal disease or those with a potential risk for renal dysfunction (diabetes, hypertension, reduced glomerular filtration rate). A pre-supplementation investigation of kidney function might be considered for reasons of safety, but in normal healthy subjects appears unnecessary.”

——————-

More Extreme & Lesser-Known Biohacks For High Testosterone

We have now covered the basics for optimizing testosterone that you really need to know and do first, before you begin to throw in the fancy stuff. Next, I will introduce you methods that have not been really discussed in popular literature and which fall into the category I affectionately refer to as “biohack yourself into a T monster”. These methods are also science-based, but I’ll admit that for some of the hacks, convincing human studies are still to be seen.

  1. Electrical (muscle) stimulation

A study done on rat’s gastrocnemius muscle (calf) found out that electrical stimulation induced a rapid increase in the number of androgen receptors in early parts of the stimulation. This led to an increase in muscle mass by enhancing the muscle sensitivity to androgens.

Another study conducted in humans showed that an electrical stimulation of volunteers’ meridian points (which basically means electro-acupuncture) increased subjects’ concentrations of total testosterone and DHEA-S without affecting LH or FSH (secreted from the pituitary gland).

Here is Ben’s comprehensive article on how to use electrostim (and a whole lot more).

  1. Red light or low-lever laser therapy (on your nuts)

Red light, near infrared light (NIR) or low-level laser therapy has been used to treat various conditions from pain and muscle aches to wound healing, skin conditions, osteoarthritis and even depression. These effects are usually local, but near infrared light has also systemic effects via circulation of blood. You might want to read this super comprehensive article on red light and NIR by a Finnish medical student Vladimir Heiskanen. He has been a key source of information for me regarding the healing effects of red light.

The basis for stimulating testosterone production by shooting red light and near-infra red light (yep, especially on your testicles) lies on the mechanism how red (or infrared) wavelengths work inside the cell. The key is that they stimulate ATP production in Leydig cells, thus increasing the energy available for the cells. This means more testosterone production.

There might be also other mechanisms, which are speculated in ”Red Light Man” site:

“Another potential mechanism involves a separate class of photoreceptive proteins, known as ‘opsin proteins. The human testes are especially abundant with various of these highly specific photoreceptors including OPN3, which are ‘activated, much like cytochrome, specifically by wavelengths of light. Stimulation of these testicular proteins by red light induces cellular responses that may ultimately lead to increased testosterone production, amongst other things, although research is still in the preliminary stages regarding these proteins and metabolic pathways. These type of photoreceptive proteins are also found in the eyes and also, interestingly, the brain.”

I haven’t found any human studies on the subject, but according to a few studies done on rats, the positive effects on testosterone production are enormous. For example a Korean study found out that low-level laser therapy (LLLT) with wavelength of 670nm (which is in border of visible red light and infra-red light) 30 minutes per day showed significant increase in serum testosterone by fourth day of the treatment without any harmful tissue penetration. A wavelength of 808 nm didn’t have any effect on T production. Another study done with rams didn’t show any positive effects on T production with 808 nm wavelength.

  • Overall, red or infrared light from LED source is generally thought to be a safe therapeutic method
  • Avoid heating the testicles, since the heat will destroy sperm cells and have a negative effect on the Leydig cells
  • Avoid blue light and UV light exposure on testicles (blue light inhibits ATP production in mitochondria)

Want more? Listen to Ben’s podcast on photobiomodulation here and then take a look at the red light that Ben is personally using and swears by, the JOOVV.  You just turn it on and – you guessed it – squat over it a bit…or stand it against a wall and shine it across thine gonads as you work at, say, a stand-up workstation.

  1. Do cold showers and swims (and keep your testicles cool)

In the 1820s, a German farmer named Vincenz Priessnitz started touting a new medical treatment called “hydrotherapy,” which used cold water to cure everything from broken bones to erectile dysfunction. He turned his family’s homestead into a sanitarium, and patients flocked to it in the hope that his cold water cure could help them.

The first hydrotherapy facility opened up in the U.S in 1843, right when the sanitarium craze hit America. By the end of the 19th century, over 200 hydrotherapy/sanitarium resorts existed in the United States the most famous being the Battle Creek Sanitarium founded by John Harvey Kellogg.

There is no straight-forward evidence that cold therapy can raise testosterone levels. But the indirect evidence exists. One study conducted in 1988 in Finland investigated serum levels of thyroid and adrenal hormones, testosterone, TSH, LH, GH and prolactin in men after a 2-h stay in a cold room (10 degrees Celsius). There were no significant changes in the serum concentration of adrenalin, T3, T4, testosterone, TSH or LH. The serum level of noradrenaline increased from 4.5 to 6.3 nmol L1 (P < 0.01) and those of Cortisol, GH and prolactin fell by 20, 87 and 48% (all P < 0.01). This means that by lowering cortisol, you would probably have more of the raw material for testosterone production and less stress response.

The indirect research evidence by in vitro (and animal) studies on optimal testicle function gives us information that the ball sack (yes, that’s my highly technical term) should be kept cool (under 35 Celsius or 95 Fahrenheit)  for optimal testosterone production. Heat exposure on testicles has been shown to reduce testosterone levels in rats. Also, an observational study done on over 6000 men showed that sperm quality and volume were greater in the winter time. This is due to stimulation by FSH and LH secreted from the pituitary gland, which also stimulate testosterone synthesis and secretion.

There are also anecdotes from old school Chinese and Russian powerlifters who iced their balls after training and also before competition. Apparently their goal was to increase performance and testosterone function.

Do these things to improve testicle function:

  • Take cold baths and showers
  • Wear loose boxers or go ”commando” to keep optimal temperature for testicles and to avoid compression
  • Sleep naked or wear just loose pajamas (no undies)
  • Sleep in a relatively cold room temperature
  • Don’t sit unless it is absolutely necessary
  1. Boron

According to a comprehensive research site Examine.com:

Boron is a dietary mineral that, although it has a daily intake, has not been accepted as an essential vitamin or mineral. It currently does not have a known minimum requirement.”

Boron is found in small amounts in the earth’s soil. It functions as a fortifier in cell walls, in the bone, in reproductive system, as well as in the brain. A boron deficiency (daily intake less than 0.23 mg per day) alters brainwave activity similar to magnesium deficiency by decreasing frontal lobe activity. A deficiency state has been associated with cognitive impairment.

Boron is well absorbed form the intestines, and the best food sources for boron are raisins, dried grapes and peaches, almonds, avocado and dried plums.

One human study showed that boron supplementation (10 mg per day) increased free testosterone (via reduction in SHBG) and DHT levels and decreased estrogen levels. Boron supplementation also seems to lower pro-inflammatory cytokines. One study done on bodybuilders found out that supplementing with 2.5 mg of boron did not have any effect on testosterone levels.

A study done on rats showed that boron accumulates in the testes and thus long-term use will probably produce the best benefits of using boron. The same study also showed, that with toxic boron doses it can actually cause testicular lesions. For humans, the safe dosage is up to 20 mg per day (the tolerable upper limit).

  1. Iodine

Iodine is an essential mineral, which means it must acquired via diet. Iodine is critical in your brain and central to the active thyroid hormones (T3 and T4). Severe deficiency in iodine can result in reduced cognition or cretinism. The thyroid gland absorbs iodine from the blood to make thyroid hormones. Approximately 15–20 mg of iodine is concentrated in thyroid tissue and hormones. Still, 70% of the body’s iodine is distributed in other tissues such as mammary glands, eyes, salivary glands and testicles.

Iodine is most abundant in seaweed and seaweed based products such as nori wraps. Daily intake of iodine should be at least 75–150 micrograms per day, and for adults, an upper intake level is 3000 micrograms.

Lack of iodine in the body (especially in the thyroid gland) can cause various health problems. The most common one is hypothyroidism. Men with primary hypothyroidism have subnormal responses to luteinizing hormone (and GnRH) and their free testosterone concentrations are also reduced.

It has been noticed in rats that by increasing iodine supplementation the mean weight of the testes also increased quite a bit. However, the epididymal sperm counts went down a bit.

One possible explanation for the higher occurrence of hypothyroidism and hypogonadism in men today when compared to say like 30 years ago, is an increase of environmental toxic halogens like fluorine, chlorine and bromine. When concentrated enough in the body, they will replace iodine’s locations inside the cells (especially in thyroid cells and Leydig’s cells).

So it is critical to have enough iodine in your system to also optimize testosterone production. Some people have even taken this further by painting their testicles with Lugol’s iodine (which is highly concentrated potassium iodine). Yes, you heard me right: you can put iodine on your testicles.

The iodine protocol that doubles your testosteronel also includes adding supporting minerals such as selenium, magnesium, vitamin C, oral iodine, co-factors for ATP (B2 and B3 vitamins) and salt. The anecdote by hundreds of testimonials here is that many people did significantly elevate their testosterone production with possible straight stimulation of the Leydig cells by iodine, which would have then lead into removal of other halogens. The hypothesis for this therapy seems legit, but unfortunately there hasn’t been done any clinical nor animal studies.

A word of caution: Do not take excess iodine and do not over do this (it will cause pain in the scrotum area because of the sensitivity of the skin). This is a potentially dangerous biohack, so be careful. As a medical doctor, I wouldn’t recommend this to my patients right away.

  1. Pulsed electromagnetic fields

The electromagnetic fields emitted from various sources (e.g. mobile phones, microwave ovens, wi-fi’s etc.) have been reported to have causative effects on biological systems such as inflammation, radiation and hyperthermia. All of these can disrupt the seminiferous tubules and reduce the Leydig cell population and testosterone concentration (studies done in rats).

Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (PEMF therapy) has been used successfully to treat various health conditions ranging from bone healing and pain relief to balancing the neuroendocrine system (including hormone production and melatonin levels).

There exists a very recent study conducted on male Wister rats, which showed that PEMF therapy helped rats to bounce back from microwave radiation in terms of testosterone production and to combat oxidative stress. In fact, rats’ testosterone levels went a bit higher than before the microwave radiation exposure after they were treated with PEMF for 60 days.

What’s this mean for you? Many folks keep their mobile phones in their  pockets quite close to testicles or ovaries. It is actually a fact that mobile phones emit microwaves that are harmful to normal tissues when kept very close to the skin. A number of studies have shown relationships between mobile telephone use and reduced sperm count and sperm quality. The negative effects are highly likely to extend also on reducing testosterone levels in men.

So the takeway is this: if you know that you are being exposed to external microwaves and wi-fi’s and cell phones, the use of a small PEMF device (locally on or near your testes) or a more general device for whole body PEMF treatment, is likely to revive testosterone levels.


Summary

Ben Greenfield back here.

What do you think?

Did you enjoy Olli’s article? Do you plan on shining laser lights on your balls, using PEMF, painting your gonads with iodine or using any of Olli’s other fringe tactics described above?

Do you have questions or your own testosterone-boosting tips and tricks and experiences to add?

Simply leave them in the comments section below.

And if you want to come hang out with Olli and I at the November 18 Biohackers’ Summit in Helsinki, Finland, you can click here and use 10% discount code BEN to get in. Or if Finland is too far away for you, then just get Olli’s extremely comprehensive, well researched biohacking book here. And thanks for reading.

 

How To Lose 131 Pounds By Eating Meat: The Rick Rubin Podcast

rick rubin landscape

Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

What do the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Kanye West, Johnny Cash, The Black Crowes, Slayer, Jay Z, James Blake, Dixie Chicks, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Black Sabbath, Slipknot, Metallica, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Weezer, Linkin Park, The Cult, Neil Diamond, The Avett Brothers, Adele, Mick Jagger, System of a Down, Rage Against the Machine, Audioslave, Sheryl Crow, ZZ Top, Lady Gaga, Shakira, Ed Sheeran, Damien Rice, Eminem, and just about every other world-famous band or musician you’ve ever heard of have in common?

They were all produced by today’s podcast guest: Rick Rubin, the American record producer and former co-president of Columbia Records. 

In 2007, MTV called Rick “the most important producer of the last 20 years”, and the same year he appeared on Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World list.

Rapper Dr. Dre has stated that Rubin is, “hands down, the dopest producer ever that anyone would ever want to be, ever.”

But Rick has a personal passion outside of music that many people don’t know about…

…health, nutrition, fitness and biohacking.

And in this episode, in which Rick and I sit on his back porch, watching a relaxing sunset after a hard morning of Laird Hamilton’s pool workout, we have an intense discussion about veganism vs. Paleo, Rick’s weight loss journey, and much more. During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-The little-known Ayurvedic pulse taking technique Rick used to find out he need to “drink more bone broth”…[16:10]

-Why Rick thinks an ice bath is very much like eating meat…[26:25]

-How Rick lost 131 pounds by eating animal protein…[29:45]

-Why Rick took an entire week to eat one steak…[28:56]

-What legendary Ironman coach and physician Dr. Phil Maffetone told Rick to do for diet and exercise, and how Rick modified it…[37:35 & 41:05]

What a typical day is like for Rick…[54:25]

-How Rick uses “transcendental meditation”, and his insight into neurofeedback for the brain…[57:20]

-Rick’s unique dietary and supplementation routine he uses each day…[60:35]

-The one herb Rick uses each day to decrease hunger and sugar cravings…[68:00]

-Rick’s standing workstation setup…[68:55]

-Why Rick uses a projector instead of a television or computer to watch movies at night…[73:45 ]

-The audio track that Rick falls asleep to each night…[76:30]

-What is it that drives Rick to live the life he lives…[79:30]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode: 

My article on “hacking” an infrared sauna

The Ayurvedic pulse taking technique Rick refers to

-Don Wildman’s “Hardest Workout In The World” article from Esquire magazine

-Phil Maffetone’s “Big Book of Health and Fitness: A Practical Guide to Diet, Exercise, Healthy Aging, Illness Prevention, and Sexual Well-Being

My podcast on Transcendental Meditation

My neurofeedback EEG training experience

-The full recipe for Rick’s Stim-Stem Shake

NatureAminos amino acids

-The herb Rick uses to decrease hunger and sugar cravings

-The Kybounder Mat Rick uses under his standing workstation

Sleeping Monk tea

Natural Calm Magnesium powder

-The alternative to Natural Calm Magnesium powder that Ben uses

Below is the Natural Calm Magnesium reply that Ben mentioned regarding heavy metals:

In regards to the Arsenic levels that Labdoor has decided to use, it is from a proposed limit over 10 years that was NEVER approved or accepted. The current established level for Arsenic is 10mcg/day. Why Labdoor decided to use a never approved or accepted proposal in unclear. In regards to the Natural Calm supplement, here is Natural Vitality’s official statement on it:

“The simple truth is that Natural Calm both meets its potency label claim and is well within the No Significant Risk Levels for arsenic and in fact is less than 10 percent of California’s Prop 65 stringent safe threshold levels. This has been consistently scientifically validated by third party test results from top American testing labs as part of standard Good Manufacturing Practices.

While testing results commissioned by Labdoor, when correctly interpreted, align perfectly with our results, their report contains a number of distortions which provide both a highly inaccurate picture and a disservice to consumers. We believe Labdoor is attempting to use our well-deserved, award-winning reputation to inflate their importance. Apparently their business model involves casting themselves as a “trusted source” by creating sensationalized stories to drive traffic to their website with the objective of creating profit from advertising sales and, interestingly, sales of supplements.

Factual Flaws

Labdoor’s Natural Calm test size was over two and a half times our recommended serving size but they did not factor that into their analysis. When correctly interpreted our results read:
Magnesium was 346 mg, about a 1% variance from our label claim of 350 mg.
Arsenic was .7992 of a microgram. Less than 8% of the California Prop 65 No Significant Risk safe threshold.

Labdoor was approached regarding their misinterpretation of the results and asked to retract their press release, send out a corrected press release and update their website.

However, Labdoor refused to admit wrong doing of any kind and continues to assert the virtue of their inaccurate position.

At this point, both through the correct interpretation of the assay provided to us from Labdoor and our retest of the lot in question, Natural Calm has been clearly shown to be accurate both in terms of label claim and in following California’s Prop 65. The laboratory used by both Labdoor and Natural Vitality was the highly regarded Covance laboratories. Covance’s interpretation of test results (both Labdoors and ours) validates our position in terms of label claim and purity.

Additional information is available at Natural Vitality customer service if desired ([email protected]).

Having cleared the record with scientific facts, we now consider this matter closed.”

I would be happy to provide you with the Certificate of Analysis that we had performed on an actual servings size instead of the 10.66g that Labdoor used, which is 2.5x our suggested serving size.

-The ZMA supplement you can use before bed at night for minerals 

-The Jack Kornfield spiritual teaching download at DharmaSeed.com

Ben’s article on BPC-157 peptides for muscle gain and fat loss 

Ben’s article on TB-500 peptides for muscle gain and fat loss 

Ben’s article on SARMs for muscle gain and fat loss 

-The NatureColostrum Ben recommends for muscle gain 

-The NatureAminos Ben recommends for muscle gain

-The SuperEssentials Fish Oil Ben recommends for muscle gain

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Rick or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

The Most Effective Detox You’ve Never Heard Of (And Exactly How To Do It).

pompa

Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

In 1974, the World Health Organization stated that environmental toxins create approximately 84% of all chronic diseases. Over the past 40 years this number has increased dramatically…

…and as a matter of fact, an oft-neglected but serious issue called “cellular toxicity” is one of the major epidemics of our lifetimes, and remains an underlying cause of numerous health issues, including gut problems, thyroid issues, sluggish metabolism, brain fog and much more.

In today’s episode, you’re going to learn exactly why that is, what cellular toxicity is, what you can do about, and the most effective form of detoxification that you’ve probably never heard of.

My guest on today’s episode is Dr. Daniel Pompa, D.PSc., who is widely considered to be a global leader in the health and wellness industry. He travels all over the country educating practitioners and the public on the root causes of inflammation driven diseases such as Weight Loss Resistance, Hypothyroid, Diabetes, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Autoimmune Disorders and other chronic conditions.

…and I happened to have had the pleasure of hanging out at Dan’s house with him in Park City Utah during my TrainToHunt National Championships competition, and finding out everything I’ve always wanted to know about how to detox the body as effectively as possible.

Dan’s authority is rooted in his own personal battle. He has overcome serious neurotoxic illness and heavy metal poisoning, and he did that using the cellular detoxification strategies we talk about in this show. His methodology is rooted in self-experimentation, and runs very much counter to mainstream detox tactics.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-How Dr. Pompa developed extremely”toxic” cells despite being a seemingly healthy pro mountain biker and chiropractic physician…[9:30]

-The big, big problem with detoxifications such as cilantro, chlorella, juice cleanses, colonics and other popular detox methods…[30:00]

-Why the popular cleansing mineral zeolite is too big to cross a cell membrane, and what you can do about it…[34:05 & 53:55]

-Dr Pompa’s 5 “R’s” of fixing your cells for good, and how you can personally do each of these R’s…[37:35]

-Why you must detox your cell, and not just your tissue or your blood, and exactly how to detox your cells…[40:15]

What happens if you mix popular detox methods, like fiber supplements or glutathione or n-acetyl cysteine or juicing, etc…[58:15]

The tiny white bottle that Dr. Pompa gave me that made me feel like complete crap and call him on the phone three days later…[63:20]

-What you should feel like when you are detoxing, and how long you should actually detox for (you’ll be surprised at the answer)…[64:30]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

CytoDetox supplement

Six hour urine challenge

Evidence Of Harm DVD about mercury dental fillings

The “Smoking Tooth” video on YouTube

IAOMT.org for finding a holistic dentist

Biology Of Belief book

NOW Foods liver capsules

USWellnessMeats (Ben mentions braunschweiger and head cheese in this episode)

Cancer As A Metabolic Disease book

Thorne multivitamin

-Dr. Pompa’s article about detoxification mistakes

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Dan or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

A “Healthy Soda” Super-Special: Is Diet Soda Good For You, Stevia DeMystified, Sugar Alcohols, Natural Flavors & More.

PODCAST- PADDY SPENCE

Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

If you happened to watch the most recent Crossfit Games, you may have noticed they were brought to you by…soda.

That’s right: a soda company was sponsor of the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games, the worldwide competition to find the Fittest On Earth. Not exactly something you’d associate with Coke or Pepsi or Mountain Dew (or my all-time favorite Dr. Pepper), is it?

The name of the soda company is “Zevia“, and my guest on today’s show is Paddy Spence, who is a 23-year veteran of the natural and organic foods industry – a guy who completely cut sugar out from his diet 14 years ago, and a guy who then purchased Zevia, a line of stevia-sweetened sodas that is now the world’s top-selling zero-calorie, natural diet soda.

He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two daughters and is an avid athlete, having completed over 40 triathlons and trained in martial arts such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling, Shotokan Karate and boxing.

During our discussion, you’ll discover: 

-How one can make the argument that “caveman drank soda”, and the fascinating history of fermented beverages and soda-like compounds…[12:00]

-How did the name Zevia come to be…[17:30]

-What causes “keto flu” and how to avoid getting it…[21:50]

-Why stevia tastes bitter to some people…[28:05]

-Why Coke’s “TruVia” and Pepsi’s “PureVia” can actually be very bad for you (and why not all stevia is created equal)…[32:30]

-How sugar alcohols are processed by your body, and the one form of sugar alcohol that won’t make you fart…[40:15]

-The little-known fruit grown in the foothills of China that actually does not spike your blood sugar…[42:25]

-Why many natural flavors come from pretty nasty sources, including the anal gland of a beaver…[50:00]

-The big reason you need to avoid anything that lists “caramel color”…[56:45]

-My own personal vodka cocktail mix I use with Creme Soda flavored Zevia, and how my kids make Root Beer Floats with Root Beer flavored Zevia…[59:00]

-Paddy’s amazing recipe for a Zevia custard dessert…[61:10]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

Zevia soda

Simply Gum

-Here’s the recipe for Banana Swirl, created by Paddy’s amazing wife Jerra Spence: 2 frozen bananas, a pinch of cinnamon, and a couple of splashes of Zevia Cream Soda. Combine all of these in a high-powered blender and mix until the bananas are smooth & creamy. Place in freezer for 30-60 minutes. Serve in a dish, possibly with some stevia-sweetened chocolate chips on top!

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Paddy or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

Killing Fat Cells, Fixing Mitochondria, Growing Superfoods & More: The Official, Much-Anticipated, Mind-Blowing, Geeked-Out Podcast With Dr. Mercola.

PODCAST- DR. MERCOLA

Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

There are very few people who I consider to be personal mentors, extremely trustworthy individuals in my life who I can look to for fitness, health and longevity advice, or people who I think put out truly “cutting-edge” health information.

Dr. Joseph Mercola is one of those people.

Dr. Mercola is a board certified family physician who had seen tens of thousands of patients before transitioning to a full time internet journalist, as he felt he could help far more people than he could in private practice.

It turns out he was right…because every month he has ten million unique visitors and 80 million unique visitors each year. Mercola.com has been the most visited natural health site for the last 12 years and is now translated into six different languages.

Dr. Mercola’s passion is optimizing mitochondrial health, and during today’s discussion, you’ll discover:

-How Dr. Mercola built Mercola.com into one of the most popular health websites in the world…[14:00]

-Dr. Mercola’s unique system that allows him to digest dozens of books each month while taking a quarter billion+ steps over his lifetime…[19:15]

-Why you should wear blue light blocking glasses during the day, not just at night…[24:30]

-How to ground your computer and keep your laptop and monitor from destroying your health…[26:35 & 35:20]

-Why Dr. Mercola eats both seafood and one surprising compound found in seafood every day of the week…[29:20]

-The little-known biohacks Dr. Mercola uses to maximize his mitochondrial density…[36:50]

-Why scrambled eggs are very bad for you, and what you can do about it…[41:30]

-The myth about iron levels and a crucial test you must take to keep iron from “rusting out” your body…[53:55]

-The best book Dr. Mercola has ever read on strength training, and how he combines it with a special hack called “EWOT”…[20:20 & 79:10]

-Dr. Mercola’s take on whether or not quantification devices like rings and wristbands are good or bad for you, and what he personally uses…[60:45]

-Why Dr. Mercola limits protein intake, and how he strikes a balance between anti-aging effects of muscle and aging effects of too much protein…[67:30]

-How to make your own “anti-aging” cocktail…[72:30]

-A unique one-two combo you can use prior to saunas to maximize your detoxification, fat burn and fat cell death…[75:10]

-Two ingredients Dr. Mercola sprinkles on his garden soil to get 10x+ production of cherries, organic produce and more…[87:40]

-The liquid dropper that Dr. Mercola takes on every airplane ride…[94:10]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

Tripping Over The Truth

My interview with Dr. Minkoff “Why You’ve Been Lied To About Cancer”

Cronometer.com/mercola

My podcast with Dr. Mercola’s girlfriend Erin Elizabeth on Lyme disease

-The book “Deskbound” by Kelly Starrett

Negative ion generator

Eizo computer monitor

Iristech software for reducing blue light on monitors

Swannies stylish blue light blocking glasses

Laptop grounding cable

Organic fish roe

Induction burner for cooking foods at low heat

DIY Exercise With Oxygen Therapy

HARAPad anti-radiation laptop pad

FindASpring.com

Whole House Charcoal Water Filter

GreenfieldNaturals.com structured water filter (use 15% discount code “friendofben”)

Tank-free reverse osmosis filter with remineralization

Neobdyium magnet

Ionic ocean minerals

Human Heart, Cosmic Heart: A Doctor’s Quest to Understand, Treat, and Prevent Cardiovascular Disease

Gerald Pollack’s book “The 4th Phase Of Water”

Dumping Iron: How to Ditch This Secret Killer and Reclaim Your Health

DeltaSleeper SR1 Device

Oura ring

Magnetico sleep pad

Ben’s article on strength training and anti-aging

Ben’s article on using NAD+ and pau d’ arco bark tea for anti-aging

-This one-two combination of d-Ribose and niacin pre-sauna

Ben’s article on “hacking your sauna”.

Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe

Quicksilver Scientific IMD Intestinal Cleanse

Biochar

Clearmind NI focus unit

Ben’s podcast on the Quantlet 

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Dr. Mercola or me? Leave your thoughts below and one of us will reply!

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Addendum: Ben’s notes on the DeltaSleeper/PEMF discussion:

The info below regarding the “Ramazzini Team” study on PEMF and cancer does not take a genius to figure out. The Ramazzini team followed what is commonly known as an initiation-promotion protocol. Male and female Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed in their mothers’ wombs and then for the rest of their lives to 50 Hz magnetic fields at an intensity of either 20μT or 1,000μT (200 mG or 10 G). At the age of six weeks, they each received a single 0.1Gy dose of gamma radiation, a known cancer agent.

So let’s take a look at what we have here.

1. The six week old rats were given a single 0.1 Gy dose of Gamma radiation. A KNOWN cancer agent. Gamma rays are classified as ionizing. This means they have the power to cause permanent cellular damage. See Below: Primer on Electromagnetic Fields.

2. They were exposed continuously for the rest of their lives to 50Hz magnetic fields at either 200 milliGauss or 10 Gauss fields. This is completely unnatural. The Earth’s magnetic field is 3-6 milliGaus (0.3-0.6 Gauss). The SR1 creates a field exactly within this natural range. I don’t believe the 50Hz magnetic pulse itself would cause any damage however the SR1 device provides a much lower frequency pattern.

So basically, these rats did not stand a chance of not developing cancer.

Further into the report we find the following from Fiorella Belpoggi, the Scientific Director of the Institute who notes that:

“No Cancer Seen with EMFs Alone”

In an interview, Belpoggi said that they are planning to publish the results of a concurrent experiment in which rats were exposed to power-frequency EMFs, without any other treatment. “In our preliminary data, ELF EMFs alone didn’t appear to show an increase of cancer in experimental animals so far,” she disclosed. “The main result of our experiment,” she said, is that “ELF EMFs have a synergistic effect: They are able to enhance the effects of a well-known carcinogen at low doses that was negative at those doses in the same experimental model.”

It’s important to understand the difference between EMF’s in something like a DeltaSleeper and EMF’s from higher power devices, so keep reading…

EMFs are classified as ionizing or non-ionizing according to their frequency.  Ionizing fields have very short wavelengths and frequencies between 1016 Hz. and 1023 Hz. These fields are above visible light on the electromagnetic spectrum (1015 Hz.) and include cosmic rays, gamma rays and X-rays which have the power to knock electrons off their nuclear orbits and cause permanent cellular damage.

Non-ionizing fields have longer wavelengths and frequencies below 1014 Hz.  Although they have less power than ionizing fields they are still capable of having biologic effects.

Important EMF modalities in medicine today are non-thermal applications of non-ionizing radiation. Medical applications of non-thermal, non-ionizing EM fields include non-union fracture bone repair, neuronal stimulation, nerve stimulation, tissue regeneration, immune system stimulation, osteoarthritis therapy, wound healing etc.

Non-ionizing fields are classified as thermal, which means in biological terms, causes gross tissue heating, or non-thermal, indicating no gross tissue heating is involved.

And the SR1 Device is a non-ionizing, non-thermal device. Furthermore, is switched on for just 22 minutes per use.

The Earth’s magnetic field ranges from 0.3 Gauss – 0.6 Gauss. The SR1 Device field strength falls within this range. They are in effect “Copying Nature” with that technology.