383: How To Maximize Stem Cell Health, Why Branched Chain Amino Acids Don’t Work, How To Get A Better Score On A VO2 Max Test & Much More!

Affiliate Disclosure


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

Mar 29, 2018, Podcast: 383 – Why Branched Chain Amino Acids Don't Work, How To Get A Better Score On A VO2 Max Test, Does Intermittent Fasting Lower Hormones, and How To Maximize Your Stem Cell Health.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right (or go to SpeakPipe), use the Contact button on the app, or click the contact link in the footer..

News Flashes [00:03:41]

You can receive these News Flashes (and more) every single day, if you follow Ben on Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Instagram.com/BenGreenfieldFitness, Facebook.com/BGFitness, BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Snapchat, and Google+.

Special Announcements [00:17:37]

This podcast is brought to you by:

-Onnit – Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/ONNIT and save 10% on your purchase. The discount is built into the link.

-Thrive – Go to thrivemarket.com/ben to get $60 of free organic groceries now!

-Omax – Go to TRYomax.com/ben today to get a box of Omax3 Ultra-Pure, FOR FREE!

Click here to follow Ben on Snapchat, and get ready for some epic stories about his morning, day and evening routine! 

Ben's Adventures [00:15:27]

-NEW! Click here for the official BenGreenfieldFitness calendar.

-April 27-29, 2018: Paleof(x) in Austin, TX. Paleo f(x)™ is the world’s premier wellness event, covering health, nutrition, fitness, sustainability, & everything in between. Our tribe gathers to learn and grow together! Bringing the latest, most cutting-edge science and strategy together to help you create your very best life, Paleo f(x) is like the Woodstock of the ancestral movement, and I will be there. Sign up now to be the first to get tickets to this very exciting event! Sign up here and see you in Austin!

-May 5-6, 2018: Montana Beast and Sprint Weekend, Bigfork MT. Join Spartan Race and Discover Kalispell as we attempt to make history by breaking the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS for most people performing burpees at one time.

-May 26, 2018: Train to Hunt / Bonners Ferry, Idaho. Whether you’re a flatlander, hunt out West, or past your prime, we want to make you a better hunter through fitness.

May 31 to June 3, 2018:  A-Fest / Sardinia, Italy.  A-Fest is an invite-only transformational event that gathers a global tribe of change-makers and visionaries who are driven by epic ideas to impact the world. Apply now to get invited.

June 28 to July 22, 2018: Mind Valley U / Tallinn, Estonia.

-The story of why Ben is not racing for Team Timex this year after all (hint: it's about this story). [00:35:03]

Giveaways & Goodies [01:15:57]

-Click here to get your own GreenfieldFitnessSystems.com gift pack, handpicked by Ben and chock full of $300 worth of biohacks, supplements, books and more. All at 50% discount!

-Grab your Official Ben Greenfield Fitness Gear package that comes with a tech shirt, a beanie and a water bottle.

-And of course, this week's top iTunes review – gets some BG Fitness swag straight from Ben – click here to leave your review for a chance to win some!


Listener Q&A

As compiled, deciphered, edited and sometimes read by Brock Armstrong, the Podcast Sidekick.

Why Branched Chain Amino Acids Don't Work [00:23:24]

Robert says: I have a question about Branch Chain Amino Acids. You say that you have concerns about their insulinogenic or glycemic effects but Dominic D'Agostino says that Leucine is a more of a ketogenic amino acid and that it didn't have much effect on blood sugar. I take up to 5 grams of Leucine before a workout, especially if have been fasting to help reduce muscle loss. If you can dig into this, that would be awesome.

In my response, I recommend:
Kion Aminos

How To Get A Better Score On A VO2 Max Test [00:31:22]

Andrew says: I have a Vo2 Max, incline, weighted fitness test coming up that I need to do for a fire department recruitment process. I was wondering if you have any tips, potential biohacking or training protocols that I can start using in preparation for this test. I will be wearing about 60lbs of gear, walking at a 12% incline for 12 – 15 minutes. Any help would be great!

Does Intermittent Fasting Lower Hormones? [00:54:29]

Andrew says: Would a 12-16 hour fast be safe for someone who is experiencing hyperthyroid and borderline testosterone issues? There is a study circulating that shows intermittent fasting can raise cortisol and lower testosterone.

In my response, I recommend:
-Study: Within-day Energy Deficiency and Metabolic Perturbation in Male Endurance Athletes.
Kion Aminos
Exogenous Ketones, Code: GREENFIELD to save 10%
Four New, Cutting-Edge Ways To Easily Shift Your Body Into Fat-Burning Mode & Ketosis
-How To Use Ketones For Longevity, How I Personally Use Ketone Salts & A New Chemical-Free, Clean Way To Get Into Ketosis
How To Get Into Ketosis In 60 Minutes Or Less (& Which Vitamins, Minerals, Nutrients & More To Fill In The Holes Of A Ketogenic Diet)
Exogenous Ketones, Deuterium-Depleted Water, Near Vs. Far Infrared, Scorpion Stings & More! A Special Episode Recorded Live In Panama
Exoskeletons For Human Performance, Will Robots Rule The World, Ketosis For Muscle Gain & Much More
Hotel Carillon in Miami
Northern Galilee podcast with a basketball player who cured himself of cancer

How To Maximize Your Stem Cell Health [01:06:06]

Jason says: I am having stem cell treatment to address an old rotator cuff tear. I am wondering if there is anything specific that I can do pre and post surgery to maximize its effectiveness. I will follow my doctor's instructions but was wondering if there is anything I can do via diet, training or biohacks to maximize the treatment's effectiveness. It ain't cheap, so I want to do all I can do.

In my response, I recommend:

-Pau D’ Arco bark tea
(2-3 cups per day of the tea)
-Superessentials fish oil (4 with any meal)
-Organic green tea extract (use throughout day)
-Organic cacao powder (use throughout day)
-Organic frozen blueberries (use throughout day)
-Activation Products Marine Phytoplankton (use in morning – 2 dropperfuls)
-Intranasal glutathione (use 2 sprays each nostril in morning)
-Colostrum (4 upon waking)
-Bitter Melon Extract (Kion Lean – 2 before dinner)
-RecoveryBits (20-30 bits a day – with or without food)
-Thorne Multivitamin
(take AM 3 capsules morning and PM 3 capsules evening)
-Organic Aloe Vera Juice (2 shots/day)
-Listen to this podcast and incorporate the recommendations on Moringa and on Coffeeberry Fruit Extract
-Either the ketogenic diet from Stephen Gundry’s Plant Paradox or from Dr. Terry Wahl’s Wahl’s Protocol
Previous podcast about how to recover faster from surgery

Prior to asking your question, do a search in the upper right-hand corner of this website for the keywords associated with your question. Many of the questions we receive have already been answered here at Ben Greenfield Fitness!


Ask Ben a Podcast Question

Related Posts

12 thoughts on “383: How To Maximize Stem Cell Health, Why Branched Chain Amino Acids Don’t Work, How To Get A Better Score On A VO2 Max Test & Much More!

  1. But we had people struggling with office stress, chronic illness, aging parents, new baby issues, parenting problems, marital strife…lots of reasons to put EAP to good use. In addition to offering services for mental health, HR needs to make it clear that normal people use those services for all sorts of really good reasons and shouldn’t feel ashamed to reach out.

  2. Marilyn says:


    I love your podcasts. Thank you for what you do. I have a question about stem cells therapy. Two months ago after my last marathon I found out I have a “complex” meniscus tear – medial meniscus on my left knee. My OP suggested I need to have a surgery. I heard you mentioned that you gave a talk in the stem cell Regenexx in Miami in your podcast. I want to seek stem cells therapy option instead of surgery. What do you think?

  3. Greg P says:

    Love your show Ben. If you don’t recommend BCAA (which I was using before fasted workouts), should I take nothing before and after fasted lifting if I’m cutting but trying to maintain muscle, then maybe take whey protein before and after fasted lifting if trying to build some bulk?

    1. No. You should take essential amino acids instead of BCAA's.

  4. Liver King says:

    From an evolutionary standpoint, if you fasted with caloric restriction for too long, you’d die… now combine fasting, caloric restriction and exercise… c’mon people!

    I have no doubt that various fasting methodologies optimize hormone status. Big picture is the “biological law of accommodation,” which has a strong interplay with hormesis. The law clearly works with exercise… guess what, it works with diet too.

    Since October 2017, wife and I have been practicing a 5-day water only fast at the beginning of each month. On day 1, we do an all-out-effort workout (e.g. like back-to-back Fran) to simulate a failed hunt. If you had any glycogen around before the workout, now you don’t! Then, we fast as usual on days 2, 3 and 4 (lots of walking, lots of ice showers, lots of rest); however, day 5 is another all-out-effort workout to simulate a successful hunt (e.g. Assault Bike intervals).

    Let me modestly state that I’m pretty freak’n jacked and strong, and that I wouldn’t be doing this experiment for very long if it compromised my ego gains. That said, we always lose a solid 7 to 10 lbs (fat, muscle, water and waste)… the next 2 weeks we are always a little bit weaker, less metabolically fit and a little less lean mass. Weeks 3 and 4 are when the magic happens… stronger, fitter and more muscle than baseline. I also see the autophagic and apoptotic benefits as the best health/ life insurance policies that money can buy.

    If you’d like to see before and after pics, I’d be happy to share… night and day difference! If you’d like to know how I break my fast, I’d be happy to share (hint: includes 8oz of raw liver and kimchi juice). Summation, fasting is bad ass for the human organism… short-term fasting, longer-term fasting, intermittent fasting… the key is to be smart… try various strategies… when your body adapts to one, try something different!

    1. Bottile says:

      Sure, I’d love some before and after pics! How are you sure this isn’t too catabolic in the long term? Do you think it’s viable in the long term, especially in old age?

  5. tim says:

    The glutiothione linked doesn’t say it’s a nasal spray. So, do you transfer it to a nasal sprayer or just go for it and snort it up a little? haha

    1. I am not a doctor and this is not to be taken, interpreted or construed as medical advice. I would transfer to a nasal sprayer. Not sure why the intranasal version isn't showing up any longer.

      1. Dan says:

        They say in their q&a you can spray it up your nose.

  6. andy says:

    Interesting. I agree with BCAA on the top of the latest researches show they could cause diabetes via the M-TOR pathway



  7. Matt says:


    I am a Med student and we just learned about Lp(a) and LDL in class. Can you provide some research about the benefits of LDL?



    1. I have a ton of resources on cholesterol on my site. Just do a search on BenGreenfieldFitness.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *