You may remember Christopher Kelly from the podcast episode “The Little Known Test That Tells You Everything You Need To Know About Your Metabolism” and “7 Signs Your Cortisol & Adrenals Are Broken“.
In today's episode, Chris is back, along with special guest Dr. Tommy Wood.
The reason I've invited Chris back on the podcast is because he recently wrote me about new methods he's been using to identify how to increase EPO, increase oxygen consumption, beat anemia, boost red blood cells, and get double-digit percentage increases in power and endurance.
I'm always looking for insider tips on how to maximize my own athletic performance, so figured it would be a good idea to have Chris on to talk about these new, little-known testing and treatment methods.
Christopher Kelly is a computer scientist, pro mountain biker, certified Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner and graduate of the Kalish Institute. Chris is British but lives in California where he runs the functional medicine practice Nourish Balance Thrive. Chris has been on the podcast twice before, once to talk about salivary hormone testing for adrenal fatigue, and once to talk about organic acid testing.
My other guest, Dr. Tommy Wood is a qualified medical doctor, graduating from Oxford University in 2011. He has a previous Bachelor's degree in Natural Sciences and Biochemistry from Cambridge University. After working as a junior doctor in the UK for two years, Dr Wood is now working towards a Ph.D. in neonatal brain metabolism at the University of Oslo, Norway.
During our discussion, you'll discover:
-Why oxygen deliverability is so extremely crucial if you plan to compete at elevation or altitude, or you want to maximize your physical performance…
-The exact blood-building protocol Chris used to get a a 32-watt (9%) improvement in his cycling power at threshold…
-Specific conditions you probably get exposed to that directly shut down your ability to produce red blood cells and EPO and what you can do about it…
-How to know if you're deficient in any of the nutrients required to produce red blood cells…
-The common nutrient deficiencies (which Chris had) that severely hamper your oxygen delivery capabilities, and how to fix them…
-The best way to track and monitor whether excessive red blood cell destruction is occurring…
-Little known ways that you can actually lose red blood cells, and how to test to see if that is happening…
-And much more!
[7:24] The background behind Chris’ interest in blood chemistry.
[9:17] Why measuring total hemoglobin mass is important to athletic performance, i.e. its relation to VO2 max.
[10:54] The importance of owning one’s health and data instead of relying on one’s primary care physician, especially when targeting athletic goals.
[12:22] How conventional treatment with intravenous iron didn’t help Chris, and how doing his own research into other treatments led to improvements in his hemoglobin and, eventually, a 9% increase in his threshold wattage.
[14:29] The biochemistry behind hemoglobin and Chris’ experience.
[17:40] EPO and the evaluation of kidney function (which produces EPO).
[20:16] Tests that can be used to identify issues with producing red blood cells, including both examining red blood cell size and count and nutrient tests.
[22:35] Chris’ personal experience with testing for nutrient deficiencies, reference ranges, and other tests that helped him such as testing for formiminoglutamic acid (FIGLU).
[25:20] Common reasons for folate deficiency.
[25:55] Interpreting elevated levels of methylmalonate.
[28:10] Causes of Chris’ nutritional deficiencies including gut inflammation, pathogens, sweat loss, genetics, etc.
[33:01] Reasons for red blood cell destruction such as the normal breakdown cycle, exercise, and chronic inflammation.
[35:16] How to determine if inflammation or oxidize stress is occurring excessively.
[38:57] Possible causes of actual loss of blood cells, including athlete’s anemia and reperfusion injuries.
[44:42] How to protect yourself from damage to the gut.
[46:06] How to know where to start and prioritize tests.
[47:58] The process for testing and test interpretation.
[49:31] Benefits of this clinical coaching.
[51:45] Other resources, discount codes, service options, etc.
Resources from this episode:
–NourishBalanceThrive.com (where you can use code BEN10 for a 10% discount on the testing and consulting services we discuss in this episode)
Do you have question, comments or feedback about how to build EPO, how to test your blood and biomarkers for precursors to oxygen production or anything else Christopher Kelly, Dr. Tommy Wood or I discuss in this episode? Leave your thoughts below and we'll reply!
Also published on Medium.