[Transcript] – Unschooling, Plant Medicine, Anti-Aging, Veganism vs. Carnivore & More With The Mind Pump Guys!

Affiliate Disclosure

Transcripts

https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/podcast/fitness-podcasts/health-wellness-biohacking/

[00:00:00] Introduction

[00:00:51] About this Podcast

[00:02:31] Podcast Sponsors

[00:05:08] A Woman’s Proper Place in The Home

[00:07:41] How to Make A Killer Pesto from Plants in Your Backyard

[00:10:17] The Benefits and Challenges of Unschooling

Get The Low Carb Athlete - 100% Free!Eliminate fatigue and unlock the secrets of low-carb success. Sign up now for instant access to the book!

[00:25:11] Discussion on Ego Dissolution

[00:28:58] Increasing Awareness and Legality of Nootropics

[00:35:05] Podcast Sponsors

[00:37:42] Nootropics and Mind Molding Effect

[00:40:45] Reconciling the Use of Nootropics with Spiritual Discipline

[00:45:18] How I Put on Several Pounds of Muscle in The Last Few Months

[00:51:51] Schwarzenegger’s New Film

[01:02:26] The Forgotten Psychological Elements of Food

[01:09:54] The Proper Balance Between Aging and Acknowledging One’s Mortality

[01:23:04] Whether My Days as An Endurance Athlete Numbered

[01:25:51] End of Podcast

Ben:  On this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.

Adam:  I can’t say that about a lot of other people that are talking about the same things that you’re talking about right now because when I see what they’re doing, it looks like just a big party.

Ben:  Long-term relationships with children and a stable nuclear family home seem to allow for some amount of societal stability that can’t be replicated when a village is raising a child.

And the boys fall asleep reading, and mom and I go in, and we integrate and face each other and chat, and that’s how we end our day, and I just can’t do that in front of a sheep testicle.

Health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking, and much more. My name is Ben Greenfield. Welcome to the show.

Alright, I know you have been waiting with bated breath for my reunion with my friends, Adam, Sal, and Justin from Mind Pump. And today, I deliver. I went down to San Jose and I sat with these cats for about an hour and a half and we dove into unschooling, plant medicine, anti-aging and longevity, veganism versus carnivore. We covered a ton. So, you’re going to love this episode with these guys. I have all the shownotes for you, as well as links to the previous four podcast episodes that I’ve done with these guys if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/mindpump5. That’s BenGreenfieldFitness.com/mindpump5.

I’m going to also link over there because these guys develop amazing fitness programs and they do like everything from strongman training to travel workouts to blood flow restriction band training guides. They specialize in producing these really easy-to-use fitness programs that are just like downloadable PDF so you can take on the road. They’ve got stuff for aesthetics, for high-intensity interval training, for performance. They have this one called MAPS anywhere that you can do in a hotel, backyard, basement, back your pickup truck, you name it. So, BenGreenfieldFitness.com/mindpump5. I’ll link to everything that you hear us talk about in today’s show, and also all of these guys’ fitness programs and fitness products because I’ve used some of their stuff and they’re developing some really cool things. They even have an Obstacle Course 1.

Before we dive in, today’s podcast is brought to you by the purest organic coffee that exists. This is Kion Coffee. It has 10 times more antioxidants than leading brands. It’s 100% free of mold and mycotoxins. And most importantly, the flavor profile on this thing is amazing. The coppers describe it as a blend of cacao and like this nice little berry polyphenol type of taste. It’s because we not only choose the healthiest raw beans but it’s got near-zero defects. We rigidly test for toxins. We don’t even use beans that are shipped enough to risk an uneven roast. If you’ve never had Kion Coffee, you’re missing out on what a true healthy coffee is supposed to taste like. So, this stuff’s totally guilt-free. We tested against 40-plus other brands and it came out on top. So, you get a 10% discount on Kion Coffee and everything else from Kion if you just go to getkion.com and use code BGF10. That’ll save you 10% site-wide on all Kion products.

This podcast is also brought to you by BiOptimizers and their product kApex. You may have heard me do a podcast with these guys about their new ketosis-friendly supplement that allows you to actually digest fats very efficiently and get fatty acids into your cells far more efficiently when you use this product in conjunction with a high-fat, low-carb diet or a ketogenic diet. It eliminates the constipation, the little fatty deposits you might see in your stool, the lack of energy that you might get with carbohydrate restriction. This supplement addresses all that stuff and a lot more. So, it’s called kApex. Expect the smoothest keto bowel movements you’ve ever had. You go to kenergize.com/greenfield. That’s K-E-N-E-R-G-I-Z-E.com/greenfield. That’ll automatically get you 20% off of any kApex. The coupon code used over there is GREENFIELDKX. I don’t know why people send me these crazy hard to remember and hard to pronounce URLs, so I’ll put a link in the shownotes too, but hey, that’s what they told me to say. So, go to kenergize.com/greenfield and use code GREENFIELDKX. You have a mind like a steel trap so I’m sure you remembered everything I just said.

That’s it. Let’s go talk to the guys at Mind Pump. And again, the shownotes are going to be at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/mindpump5.

Adam:  So, I want a nanny and–

Sal:  Or a manny.

Adam:  Whatever I got.

Sal:  Manny.

Adam:  I want another human in the house that’s just kind of helping support.

Ben:  It’s so nice.

Adam:  My sister right now, she comes down and she spends a whole week with us, and it’s amazing because she comes right behind us. She walks the dogs if I need her to. She does the dishes. She kind of prepares meals for us. She’ll take the baby for a little bit if Katrina needs a nap. And it’s just the relief that each of us need. And then, it also takes the pressure off of me if I’ve had a crazy long day and I know she’s had a long day and I’m not there. I don’t want to relieve her. She just needs some relief. So, I’ve been trying to push it but she’s kind of stubborn right now. She really is, “I want to try and figure this out.” She’s got that going on right now where she feels like she wants to try and figure it out for herself before she decides–almost like she’s giving up. I’m like, “You’re not giving up. I know you can do it but it’s like, why not? If we’re in a position where we can do something like that, why not?”

Ben:  I think the ideal feeling that a woman should have in the home is that she’s just the freaking queen, like the matriarch. And ideally, she doesn’t have to lift a finger to do the dishes and to clean up after the boys or do the laundry. I mean, I realized that some people might be sitting there. They can do what a bunch of rich efforts talking about the woman of the household just sitting around a bathtub, drinking wine.

Adam:  Hey, it’s all about what you spend your money on. You’re not a guy that’s rolling around in $150,000 whip. You’re not out making it rain in places like that. You’d rather invest money in things like that. I think there’s nothing wrong with that.

Ben:  I want somebody to walk down the driveway a quarter-mile and get the packages and come back up while I’m downstairs podcasting. That’s not too much to ask. And I don’t want my wife to have to work so hard that she’s stressed out at the end of the day.

Sal:  Yeah. No.

Justin:  But you guys [00:07:04] ______.

Ben:  I don’t want to be married to an alcoholic.

Justin:  I mean, you also, your home takes a lot of things to–it takes a lot of effort to take care of. You have a lot of animals and–

Ben:  There’s a lot of things.

Justin:  Yeah.

Ben:  Yeah.

Justin:  Yeah, yeah.

Ben:  There’s a lot of like fitness equipment that’s got to be up [00:07:20] ______ and little hydrogen water generating machines that have to be cleaned out, then I’ll come with their little instructions. And every time a new toy comes, it’s like the IKEA for fitness, somebody’s got to put all that shit together. I kind of like doing some of that stuff myself, but it’s not my best purpose to be dinking around with a screwdriver on some infrared light panel.

Justin:  Are you guys still foraging around your property and getting plants and stuff to cook with and all this?

Ben:  Yes. I found an amazing recipe because I like to make pesto. I’m on a pesto kick, salad probably [00:07:53] ______. Oh, it’s so good like a ribeye steak slathered with pesto.

Sal:  Pesto goes good on everything.

Ben:  Oh, my gosh, it’s so good. And the thing is like a lot of these wild plants you can make a really nice pesto out of, like dandelion which is wonderful for the liver, and nettle. All the deer on our property feed on nettle and it grows [00:08:12] ______ huge whitetails because it’s so high in amino acids and fatty acids. So, we’ve got this stinging nettle and we have wild mint. So, you get some of that minty flavor. And then, we grow little herbs in our garden like rosemary and thyme. Another one that I harvest is plantain, which actually grows near the nettle, which is cool because a lot of times things that hurt you in nature have something that grow nearby them to fix that hurt.

Sal:  I’ve heard of this. This is true, it’s not a myth. It does actually help us.

Ben:  No. Like in the case of stinging nettle, it’s because your hands get stung by the backside of the nettles because of little thorns on it. But you rub some of that plantain leaf on your hand and it just goes away. But the plantain is also very soothing to the stomach. So, I put a little bit of that in there, too. So, I’ll come back home with this big bag of all these wild greens just from around our property. And then, what I was doing was I put them in the food processor, and then, of course, use your pine nuts, or walnuts work very well. Just a shit-ton olive oil, like a really good spicy, dark, rich olive oil, a little bit of salt, a little bit of pepper, and then you just blend on the food processor. It’s crazy easy on 90 seconds pesto. And normally, you’d add Parmesan cheese to that as well. And even though Parmesan cheese doesn’t have the lactose sugars in it, I still don’t do that well with dairy, but the Parmesan cheese is what gives it that nice umami, a kind of salty flavor.

And so it’s lacking something pesto without the Parmesan. So, what I figured out is that you can actually ferment the nettle. So, if you have like some old pickles, like an old pickle jar in your fridge, you save that brine, and you go and harvest all your plants and everything, and you just shove them into a glass mason jar, and then you dump the brine over that. You put a lid on it, and then you just set on the kitchen counter for about two weeks, and it would actually ferment, and it gives you the same nice rich umami flavor as if you added Parmesan cheese. Then you put that in a food processor with your nuts and your olive oil and everything and do it. It’s next-level shit.

Adam:  Now, are you incorporating a lot of this in like the way you’re teaching your boys? Because I know now that you’ve pulled the boys completely out of school. You’re 100% homeschooling them right now. Are you incorporating stuff like this?

Ben:  No. Mostly, they’re responsible for killing animals. They kill and fill dress animals that just wander our little knives. They’re like Captain Fantastic. I get that comment a lot. People are like, “Oh, you guys live out on the sticks like Captain Fantastic.” My kids are covered in mud with daggers in their teeth. Yeah, jump it out, [00:10:47] ______.

Justin:  It’s like [00:10:49] ______ out there.

Ben:  Yeah. Now, they do a lot of this stuff with me for two reasons. Number one, it’s a very good way for them to go out and learn and immerse themselves in nature. And of course, as you guys know, there’s tons of benefits to that for kids from the biome to free play to nature immersion. But they also, of course, have podcasts themselves. They have a food podcast.

Sal:  I don’t know this.

Justin:  Oh, no way.

Ben:  Anytime. Yeah. They’ve had it for a year and a half. Anytime I’m prepping food, I’m including them, and then they have–like they have chefs visiting the house now and taking them through these complex Italian multi-course meals. They go out to different restaurants in town and do reviews. They have all these different recipes that they create. They do two podcasts a month. They have a VA they pay $400 a month to. It’s their brand manager. So, she takes care of all their social media accounts, the editing, the publishing. And then, they go find the recipes they want to create or the chefs they want to interview. They started as an audio podcast. Now it’s a video podcast. They’ve got five sponsors like Wild Planet Sardines, and ButcherBox, and a lot of these food sponsors.

Adam:  How much of this did you orchestrate and how much of this had they done on their own?

Ben:  They have their Amazon affiliate account linked to their bank account. They’re off-dropping.

Adam:  Every [00:12:05] ______ dropping.

Ben:  Yeah.

Adam:  I love it.

Ben:  And plus, Washington State. And most states require that any children who are homeschooled or unschooled take a core curriculum. In Washington State, there’s 12 subjects; math, history, reading, writing. One of those subjects is occupational studies. So, anytime they’re doing the podcast, they keep a diary every day of what they’ve done so that should we ever be audited about their curriculum, we can turn around and say, “Yeah, they were cooking. That’s chemistry. That’s science.” They have been building a tree fort for the past three months. I hired a contractor to come up and work with them on this tree fort design they drew up and that’s their math curriculum for the summer, just building this massive tree fort. And then, they’re, of course, doing their podcast. That’s a science and chemistry of food, but then it’s also occupational studies. It’s math as they’re doing their banking and learning about how the affiliate sponsorships work.

Adam:  Now, what are your theories on doing it this way versus a traditional way, let your kid go through school? Like, what are your theories, and what do you see already happening, and what do you expect to happen by schooling them this way?

Ben:  Well, in the book, “21 Lessons for the 21st Century,” Yuval–was it Yuval Noah Harari? I probably just butchered his name. You guys know the cat I’m talking about?

Adam:  We don’t.

Ben:  Yeah. Okay. It’s a good book, but the author’s name is difficult to pronounce or remember. He dictates that the employee or the worker of the future is not going to be the factory worker that the post-industrial era and the Agricultural Revolution centered education around, right? We want people to be able to work in factories. We want people to be able to put square pegs and square holes. We want people to be able to think inside the box and follow the rules. Yes. Doug just pulled it up, Yuval Noah Harari. And instead, we need free-thinking, resilient, creative workers who are able to adapt to new jobs on the flies, things like artificial intelligence and automation replace certain positions.

And because of that, if a child is learning in a classroom situation at the same pace as everyone else, taking the subjects that the states or the government has dictated is going to be, the exact subjects that they should choose, whether or not they’re passionate about those subjects, if they’re not allowed to engage in a great deal of creativity and free play similar to the way that the Finland school system is built with plenty of time outdoors, with plenty of time in unpredictable situations, then they’re likely not going to be positioned to adapt to this rapidly changing work structure that we’re now immersing.

Sal:  And it’s changing faster and faster.

Ben:  Yeah, exactly. Truckers are perfect example, right? We’re going through that right now with artificial intelligence and automation potentially disrupting the trucking industry, right? And in an ideal situation, the people who are most positioned to not be affected by that are the people who can go out and do something even more creative. A better example might be a surgeon who is likely going to be replaced by a robot in the next decade, right? Robotic surgery can be far more precise and less erroneous than a human physician doing surgery. And a human physician who has been educated to think outside the box and move on and be creative might go on to find the cure for cancer or might go on to develop an even better robotic surgery tool.

Alright, so the idea is that by unschooling, which is essentially self-directed education, it involves identifying what a child is passionate about, what it is that really turns them on. And that’s going to change from year to year, and even from month to month. And then, surrounding them with as many toys, books, items, technologies, tools, people, et cetera, that allow them to pursue that passion and take a deep dive into that passion, and then you just step back and let entropy emerge, let the children do what they want. And your only job is to surround them with what they need to get that done.

Adam:  So, tell me how this is unfolded for you then, like when you first decided to unschool them, did you go right into it with the curriculum idea, or did you like let them almost guide and direct where you were going to go? How did that look?

Ben:  No curriculum. We started off with about two weeks of almost like a storyboarding, where they had these giant posters and they were writing down all the things they’re interested, all the places they want to visit, all the cultures they want to explore, the cuisines that they want to learn to cook, the subjects like American history, for example, is one subject that they’re just very interested in. And then, I go out and I go to Amazon, and I buy all the books, and all the Lego toys, and all the kits. So, a few examples would be they were interested in drones. So, I got them access to a drone course online.

I bought them a drone to build. I bought them all the accessories for the drone, and the drone just went down into the closet, and once they finished fifth grade and we’re just done with school, they started to delve into the closet and go and pull out all these different items and just begin on their own volition to play with and to build these. And I came home one day and they’d built a drone, and another day they’d programmed a Lego robot. Like I mentioned, they’ve built an entire tree fort over the summer just with wood. And I have a guy coming over a couple times a week to teach them some things and they have a tree fort now. But the idea is there is no structured curriculum, right? It’s simply get the things that they need to be able to delve into their passions then step back and let them play with it.

Justin:  Now, what are the biggest challenges with the strategy? Because I can imagine parents right now were like, “My kid just wants to play video games and watch TV all day,” or, “My kid doesn’t know what they like or whatever.” Like, what are some of the challenges you’ve encountered with this?

Ben:  Well, I think we’ve talked about this before on previous podcast. There’s no rules in the Greenfield household, right? There’s no like, “You can’t have gluten.” There’s no screen time rules. There’s no, “This is the good snack; this is the bad snack rules. You can’t have that.” Like, there are no forbidden fruits in our home. Instead, we educate them about the consequences of a decision such as neural inflammation or gut inflammation from gluten consumption, or the effects on their sleep cycles from watching TV late into the night. And then, we let them sit with the consequences of any decision that they might make, like stomach upset or not being able to get through the day because of poor sleep, et cetera.

But I think the biggest thing when it comes to, “Is my child going to sit around and play video games all day? Are they going to be tied to their screen all day?” is that the adults that they’re surrounded with must provide the example. Like in our house if there’s downtime, dad is reading or playing the guitar. That TV is rarely on. It’s just not a thing. It’s not the norm in our house for if there’s downtime, to go and turn on the TV. There aren’t any video games in our house, which is not something we do. We don’t play video games. And they downloaded like a chess program to their computer, but it’s more fun for them to sit with that for 45 minutes before dinner and play chess across the table while we’re joking and listening to music.

And so a big thing is that if you structure your house and the parents are a living breathing example of the way that things like video games and food and snacks and however else you spend your downtime should be treated, then generally, the kids will move towards that. Even with supplementation, like, I’ve had the kids’ genomes sequenced and have identified. They don’t have the gene that can assist them with making vitamin D from sunlight. They only have 50% of the glutathione genes. They have lower levels of B, D and F, and a variety of factors that dictate that they could engage in better living through science and supplement.

So, I’ve bought all those supplements. They’re all in the fridge. I don’t tell my kids, “Go take your supplements.” But when I go to the fridge and I take, whatever, glutathione, I’ll be like, “I’m going to take my glutathione now. This is hmm, hmm. That’s damn good glutathione, hmm. Hey, guys, this is good glutathione.” And then, a lot of times, they’ll rush down and they’ll grab their supplements because they remember because that [00:20:36] _______. And so it’s all about being an example and also making sure that the living environment is equipped with things that allow them to engage in productivity and support that versus the house just being littered with screens and videogames.

Sal:  Now, have you encountered any challenges that you could tell us? Had there been any situations where you’ve had some sticking points and kind of had to figure out your way around them or navigate them?

Ben:  It’s been really smooth. It’s been really smooth so far. I think the only thing that–

Adam:  It seems like you’ve been setting the table for many years for this to be smooth. Like I would imagine if you try to make this transition and you were a household where mom and dad stared at the TV for four hours at night, like that would be a challenge. But because you’ve already set the table for this way of living, it seems kind of already natural, right?

Ben:  Right. The only thing I’ve run into is that, let’s say they do want to be a physician or an astronaut and go to college, well, they need to know how to take a standardized test. They need to take a yearly standardized test through the State of Washington.

Sal:  Oh, so they’re required to take that?

Ben:  They’ll need to take their college entrance exams. And so just that idea of going from unschooling to actually needing to whip out a book and sit at the kitchen table to prepare for a standardized test, that I think is going to be the hardest thing. We’ve still got four more months to–we’ll start digging into how we’ll tackle that piece. But that’s really the thing I’m most apprehensive about is going from just pure, creative free play in a child’s dream situation–

Sal:  So, being required to take a test by the government. How are you going to discuss that with them?

Ben:  Exactly. Come on inside, put down your bows and arrows, you guys got to learn precalc now at the kitchen table. And the only reason why is because you have to take a test, right?

Sal:  Why dad? Why am I being forced?

Ben:  Right.

Sal:  Punishing me.

Ben:  Well, honestly, what I tell them is, “You guys might think differently when you’re 17 or 18. You might want to go to college. You don’t want to go to college now.” But if that changes, the last thing I want is for my kids to think, “Gee, dad totally screwed me over and I’m effed up now because I can’t go to university because I had no idea when I was 12 that I need to be taking these tests and dad didn’t tell me and dad didn’t encourage me to, so now I can’t go to college.” I don’t want that scenario.

Adam:  No, it’s smart you’re thinking about that already. What about socializing the kids? Like, what do you do right now for them to interact with other kids?

Ben:  Yeah. That’s a common question in homeschooling and unschooling and it’s a complete moot point because they’re in jiu-jitsu. I mean, think about summer camp, right, when you got to summer and you had–like you could go to theater camp, and you could go to horseback riding camp, and you could go to like some nature camp, a wilderness survival, basketball camp, soccer camp, whatever, it’s like that but all year long. Like, they’re there in so many camps, and classes, and clinics, and off with other kids all the time.

Adam:  They’re constantly interacting with other kids.

Ben:  Yeah, exactly. I mean, there’s not a day that goes by that they’re not competing against or with, or in the same room as, or socializing with other kids.

Justin:  Do they find time away from each other? When they do hang out with other kids, do they separate or they stay close together?

Ben:  They stay very close together. They’re very close. And I think that’s going to be kind of difficult for them when they need to cut ties with one another because they’re very close. As a matter of fact, one of my biggest fears, and this is a nightmare I’ve had a few times, is that one of them dies, that one of them dies because they’re just like–they’re joined at the hip. When they’re 13, and that’s only two years away, they’ll go through a rite of passage. They’ve been training with the wilderness survival instructor for years now, like the same camp for four years in a row, going and learning their bow drill, and wilderness tracking, and fire making, and learning how to survive, primitive weaponry, everything like that so that they’re resilient enough to be able to survive in the wilderness.

And so when they’re 13, they’ll have a week with a wool blanket and a backpack and a knife out in the wilderness, but each on their own, not together. And then, they’ll come out of that and then we’ll have their coming of age ceremony. They’ll go through their first foray into plant medicine. They’ll journey, they’ll dissolve their ego, then they’ll pass into manhood, and we’ll have like an official kind of cutting of the cord ceremony where they’re responsible to help pitch in for food for the Greenfield household, help to support themselves, use more of the money that they’re making from this podcast to buy their own things, but they’ll be identified as men at that point, that crossing of the threshold. But that will be done with them alone, not together.

Sal:  Oh, that’s going to be tough. That’s going to be tough. You said dissolve their ego. How?

Ben:  Plant medicine.

Sal:  Oh, wow. And how does that work with a 13-year-old?

Ben:  There are people doing it, and there are many cultures that do this as well, but it’s not dissimilar to what you’d experience as an adult, right, ego disillusion, the ability to be able to see yourself in a different light, to embrace greatness or to embrace perhaps something different about yourself, then you would have perceived had your ego been on full alert. And typically, those are with things like psilocybin or ayahuasca or other Amazonian plant medicines. I’ve already identified a very responsible facilitator who will oversee that whole thing.

Sal:  Now, this is something that’s relatively new to you even, right? Because I think when we first met you, you hadn’t done any plant medicine, you hadn’t gone into that. And that was, what, three years ago?

Ben:  No. When you met me, I had.

Sal:  You had. Okay.

Adam:  He just lied to you.

Ben:  I had journeyed with–

Adam:  We weren’t on that level yet.

Ben:  I journeyed with psilocybin, with ayahuasca, and with [00:26:18] ______. And now, that’s something that I’m doing on a quarterly basis, and my wife has joined me with that as well as a sort of like couple’s journey. And I think that as Steven Kotler and Jamie Wheal outlined in Stealing Fire, it certainly is something relatively hedonistic. We know that it depletes 5-HTP and you get some pretty significant serotonin imbalances, and there’s just some neurochemical reasons not to do something like that frequently. In addition to the idea that it can become an escape, many people don’t integrate afterwards, many people don’t journal afterwards, many people don’t journal afterwards, many people don’t–

Adam:  This is what I see a lot of.

Ben:  Yeah.

Adam:  I see that’s more common right now is that it’s–especially in our space, the 20 years that I’ve been in fitness, I’ve never seen so many people in the fitness space talk about ayahuasca, DMT, psilocybin, LSD. All this stuff is coming–is surfacing like no other. And I feel like very few people are like you. I always get asked about you every time you come into town like, “What is this Ben [censored] weird? That guy’s crazy.” Honestly, if there was anybody that I would want to talk to about all these fringe ideas and things, it’s you because I feel like you have learned to discipline yourself really well. I can’t say that about a lot of other people that are talking about the same things that you’re talking about right now because when I see what they’re doing, it looks like just a big party to me.

Ben:  It is in many cases because, let’s face it, it is kind of fun to lay back and just let your mind wander and forget life and go to a happy place full of sparkles and rainbows and kaleidoscope imagery, and you wake up and you’re like, “I found myself. I saw God.” And then, a week later, you’re just back at the grind, stressed out, existential angst and lost because you don’t have an intention going in and/or you don’t actually have some type of integration practice planned coming out. I mean, my wife and I have–we have those BackJack chairs in our bedroom now, and we sit facing each other, gazing into each other’s eyes for 15 minutes every night. I mean, 9:15, the kids are in bed. By 9:30, we’re sitting in bed, legs intertwined, facing each other just integrating.

Adam:  In silence?

Ben:  No, talking.

Adam:  Oh, talking.

Ben:  It’s a–

Adam:  And that’s just a practice that came from one of your journeys?

Ben:  Yes, yes.

Adam:  Okay.

Ben:  And we’ve journeyed like that, too. Completely no judgment zone, when you journey, you’re sitting there for four or five hours facing each other, which is a crazy, crazy experience to be with your partner, your lover. Both of your egos fully dissolve, staring into each other’s eyes, seeing each other as spirits–

Adam:  [00:28:55] ______ is a lost art, man.

Ben:  Yeah.

Adam:  What are some of the things that you notice about that? I’ve experienced this myself, too, but I want to hear you talk about it. What is it about that with your partner? We’re seeing that this–I think, was it Colorado that already–legal right now?

Sal:  Decriminalized. I’m not sure where it was. It might have been Colorado. Decriminalized psilocybin.

Adam:  And it’s probably going to be–

Justin:  And Oakland, too.

Ben:  Johns Hopkins just launched their new research arm, which Tim Ferriss kind of popularized that entire press release and was one of the benefactors for that entire arm. I had dinner last night with Dr. Victoria Hale, who has worked with MAPS Foundation and is responsible for a lot of the additional research into ayahuasca, and also psilocybin. In Canada, they’re going to be rolling out a series of different medical clinics designed for therapeutic administration of these. There are folks like Dr. Dan Engle, who has a clinic in Boulder and will be opening up another clinic in Austin with the use of plant medicines for concussion, for TBI, for trauma-based therapy. There are people, although it’s not legal currently, but there are still many facilitators overseeing things like high-dose MDMA sessions within the U.S. for therapy, and this is something that people are becoming increasingly aware of, the benefits of these type of medicines when used in a therapeutic responsible manner.

Sal:  I’m glad you said that because I see a lot of frivolous use, and these are powerful, powerful substances. Just as they can benefit you, they can also cause a lot of problems.

Ben:  Yeah. And don’t get me wrong. I mean, [censored] take 300 milligrams of like iboga, South African bush extract, before a workout and you’re like one of those African warriors when you’re at the gym. You microdose with little psilocybin and niacin and lion’s mane before a hard cognitive day of work, and I mean like, that’s one of the best nootropic stacks ever. And so in small amounts, these things can be amazing just for general productivity and making life better. When you get to the larger amounts, we’ll see psilocybin rinsed, washed, and repeated in the same way that the CBD and THC were, right? Recreational use, people flying off the wheels, going on crazy trips. I think it’s going to be a little bit weird and kind of wild, wild westy over the next 5 to 10 years.

Adam:  I agree.

Ben:  And mark my words, there’s going to be some people making serious money. There’s going to be some pharmaceutical companies making some serious money off of these compounds, including replications of like ayahuasca, and DMT, and psilocybin.

Sal:  Like synthetic versions of them. Yeah. The psychiatric applications are going to be–in my opinion, I think we’re going to see breakthroughs in psychiatry that we can’t even comprehend. Curing mental disorders and ailments that were before uncurable and just treatable with numbing agents, it’s my personal belief. But I also see the potential negatives of people abusing these things. One thing that seems to go hand-in-hand, and maybe this is just what I see in social media, it seems like people–the use of these substances goes hand-in-hand with the adoption of an open relationship lifestyle. Do you think there’s any connection or do you think that’s just part of the whole frivolous like, “Oh, we’re partying and this is just kind of part of it”?

Ben:  I think that a big part of that is the disinhibition that some of this stuff can create. I mean, very simple example but my wife and I use ketamine and oxytocin for sex, and it’s amazing. I mean, like intranasal ketamine and oxytocin, that makes for a fantastic date night. And it removes a lot of inhibitions and you have a crazy good time and it’s a lot of fun. Guys sometimes get a little droopy dick from the ketamine but that’s nothing little microdose of sildenafil or whatever else can’t fix. But then you put other people into a scenario like that and you’ve got almost like a burning man-esque scenario, right, where there’s like orgies and a couple surfing. I think that part of it is the disinhibition that occurs. I think part of it is just the–kind of like the free love type of personality, the ’60s hippies’ type of mentality that’s still the type of person that’s largely associated with a lot of these plant medicines. Like, the person who’s just willing to do that tends to be a little bit more free-spirited and independent and thinking outside of the box.

Sal:  A little bit of a self-selection bias.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah. And we talked about this when we podcasted in Austin from Paleo f(x) I think about a year and a half ago, and I’m sure we can link to this in the shownotes, but we talked a lot about how–I mean, that stuff is just so [censored] attractive and fun and tempting, but you have to choose whether your goal is short-term pleasure or long-term legacy. Alright, there’s very few societies that I know of that have been built successfully upon a polygamous, open relationship type of culture because monogamy, contractual relationships, if you want to call them that, long-term relationships with children and a stable nuclear family home seem to allow for some amount of societal stability that can’t be replicated when a village is raising a child.

There is no clear man or clear woman as a head or a leader of a household. And so I feel like I just couldn’t build a Greenfield legacy. I couldn’t have my children feel stable, and I couldn’t just manage the household logistically if I had multiple partners or open relationships. I just feel like long-term, it wouldn’t allow for me to be able to affect the impact and the change that I want the Greenfield family to go on–

Sal:  I feel like it’s a base way to act. And as you elevate, you start to figure out what really works. And committing to one person I think is a more evolved way. It requires more growth and development. It really does. No different than committing to a life of surrounded by cupcakes and candy and saying, “I’m going to eat the stuff that’s healthy for me and good for me.”

Ben:  Oh, hello. I want to interrupt today’s show to tell you about what my friends over at Four Sigmatic have managed to engineer. So, they have put into one single packet a megadose, 1500 milligrams of extracted reishi mushroom. It’s one of the most studied mushrooms shown to activate sleep cycles. Just one packet of this, and I actually dumped two into my mouth, will knock you on your ass for a lovely night of sleep or for a nap, but you don’t wake up feeling unrefreshed or groggy. It basically just hits the off-switch on your brain, relaxes you, acts very similar to an adaptogenic herb, but it’s a mushroom.

And they’ve also put rose hips in there along with tulsi and mint so you have some of your vitamin C. You’ve got the tulsi, which also calms you down a little bit. And the delicious mint leaf kind of gives it this subtle minty taste. You get a 20% discount on this stuff and all the other wonderful Four Sigmatic products. The one I was just talking about is a reishi elixir. You go to foursigmatic.com/bengreenfield. That’s F-O-U-Rsigmatic.com/bengreenfield and use coupon code BENGREENFIELD. That’ll get you a 15% discount on everything from Four Sigmatic.

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Sal:  What about the mind molding effects in the sense of–do you think that these substances can be used to brainwash people or to change them? There’s a lot of conspiracies around the CIA experimenting with these substances to control people’s minds or–what’s his name? Manson. How he used LSD to turn a bunch of suburban kids into murderers. Do you think there’s some things we need to fear in that sense?

Ben:  I have no idea. But they say the same thing about fluoride, right? Calcification of the pineal gland and once you–but that would be the opposite, right? Because if you calcify the pineal gland and they’re no longer producing DMT, what they’re saying is that you are more–what was the word you used?

Sal:  Multiple–

Ben:  Yeah. You’re more Manipulatable.

Sal:  Sure. Manipulatable.

Ben:  And people can manipulate you. So, I don’t know. I’m not quite sure what would affect the neurochemistry of manipulation more, less DMT or more DMT. But that is one conspiracy theory, right? That’s why we have fluoride in the water so that we’re good little factory workers [00:38:45] ______. I don’t know if that’s true. But the one last thing that comes to mind from me with this whole open relationship in implant medicine type of thing is that I think it can be used in the opposite manner, too. And this is what I’ve experienced. My wife and I, for 14 years, we’re very emotionally and sexually connected, but not spiritually connected, not intertwined as spirits and souls, not looking into each other’s eyes as unique sparks meant to be for each other from the beginning of the universe as these two angelic beings who have this very special spiritual relationship.

And now that we’ve connected spiritually on that deep, deep level, I mean, we can feel each other from afar. We know when we’re dreaming about each other. We know when we’re thinking about each other, like it’s freaky, and I’m sure that comes down to kind of like a quantum physics proton particle type of thing where–and I’m a believer that there is this fourth dimension that we’ve had yet to fully uncover and that we actually are pretty deep when it comes to being spirits and souls. And really, that’s the most special part of us that nobody can take away. But then when you connect with your lover on that level and you see them as this incredibly unique spirit, it’s cool for two reasons. Number one, you’re just so [censored] connected. You look into your lover’s eyes and you see them as literally like something like a goddess or an angel. And then, the other part of it is that you treat everybody differently. I feel like that love and relationship that you experience with one person, you begin to see everybody as a spirit, or a soul, or a very unique being. So, it kind of changes the way that you judge people or the way that you treat other people, too.

Justin:  Now, how do you wrap using plant medicines and going on these journeys with that rigid sort of structure of your spiritual beliefs? And how does that all intertwine and help either to explain a deeper meaning that you’re getting from, let’s say, the Bible as you’re a Christian? Or how did it explain how that can enhance the experience even more?

Ben:  I think that everything was put on the planet, for me as a creationist, as a believer, that a higher power created everything around us. I think everything was put there for a purpose, from wine and weed to ayahuasca and psilocybin and the hundreds of plant medicines we have yet to even discover in South America or the Amazon, for example. And I think that because of that, anything can be used for good or for evil, right? I mean, something as simple as wheat, right? You can go out into a wheat field and pick wheat and just chew it right there off of the–with the chaff and the bran, the kernel, and everything else, and all that concentrated gluten and [censored] up your gut.

And you can grab a wonderful, lovely, biodynamic wine and drink to excess and develop liver psoriasis, right? And you can smoke yourself into oblivion, or you can have a glass of wine at the end of the day or at a wedding and go dancing and just feel that slight release of GABA, that inhibitory neurotransmitter, and feel wonderful. And you can use a little bit of weeds to relax at the end of the day, or a little bit of CBD to enhance your sleep. You can use a little bit of psilocybin to increase your cognition, or you can use a lot of it to dissolve the ego and to actually grow closer to God and experience God in a completely different way when your ego is dissolved. And I think that many people use this stuff irresponsibly, or they don’t understand or go in with the right kind of intention. But I think that everything that is on this planet can be a blessing or a curse, depending on how you use it. And so I have no issues as a Christian with saying that everything on this planet is a blessing. It just depends on how you use it, right?

Sal:  Why do you think it hasn’t traditionally been a part of that tradition? Do you think because of the fears of abuse of people not using things?

Adam:  Did Moses really see a burning bush or–?

Ben:  I don’t know that it hasn’t been. I don’t know that it hasn’t been. And I haven’t delved too deeply into the history, but I think that there is evidence of plant medicine usage amongst a lot of historical Christian sects. I think that at the same time, there is kind of, especially in America, the puritanical version of Christianity that dictates that you never want to, whatever, lose control of your senses and dissolve your ego. And we’re just hard-working, blue-collar, go to church every Sunday, singing your songs. But I mean, these are the–in many cases, I’m probably going to offend some people [00:44:18] ______ same type of people eating Twinkies and Doritos at the church potluck. And when their bodies go to crap and not really delving deeply into caring for themselves or developing a relationship with the bodies that they’ve been given, with the temples that they’ve been given.

So, I think a big part of it is just like this puritanical form of Christianity that has developed, especially in America, that’s held a lot of Christians back from that. And also, because what’s fascia, like there is a deep history of shamanism, and satanic worship, and demon activity, and all that stuff that’s associated with any of these things because once you enter into the spirit world, there’s a lot of that, right? But there’s not just demons, there’s also angels. There’s not just Satan, there’s also God. Alright, so there’s two elements of the spirit world. There’s light and dark. There’s the good force and there’s the bad force, or whatever it is in Star Wars.

Sal:  Justin got excited right now.

Ben:  Yeah.

Sal:  Let’s change gears a little bit.

Justin:  Stay away from the dark.

Sal:  Yeah. Let’s change gears a little bit. Recently, you looked like you put on, I don’t know, how many pounds of muscle. What you did you do? You change your training? Was it Adam’s challenge?

Ben:  It was Adam’s swimming challenge.

Sal:  You looked like you had put on like 15 pounds of muscle.

Ben:  Yeah.

Sal:  Yeah.

Ben:  Yeah. A big part of it was–I interviewed Dr. Paul Saladino. And as with anything, I like to try out a lot of the stuff that I talk about on podcast. So, I adopted a largely nose-to-tail carnivore-based diet.

Sal:  And that put the muscle on you?

Ben:  I threw in some other things, too. I was doing like colostrum, I was doing like a lot of kefir, ton of liver, organ meats, just eating a lot more food in general.

Sal:  I didn’t say you bumped your calories significantly.

Ben:  Yeah. No. I was eating about 5,000, 6,000 calories a day from a lot of protein sources, taking a lot of digestive enzymes, too.

Sal:  Dude, 5,000 calories on a carnivore diet is–

Ben:  Which is what I used to do and I was bodybuilding, too.

Sal:  I tried to do that. I had a really hard time doing that.

Ben:  I also had tubers, raw honey, and berries, ton of bone broth, a lot of collagen. I also made dessert, which was like a collagen ice cream, and I made that. And this was not a carnivore, but I just made this to get my calories in at night. So, coconut milk with collagen, with stevia, with nut butter, almost like one of those fat bombs that has a lot of collagen in that they have at night. So, eating a lot of food. I was lifting a lot more, doing like four days a week full body lifting, a lot less endurance, and put on decent amount of muscle. And then, I went to that damn like Swiss clinic healing retreat thing over the summer where it was like colonics and enemas every day and [00:46:58] ______.

Then you come up for breakfast after you’ve had all the poo and everything else just like sucked out of your insides, and you’re starved and you want to–yeah, like this salad arm–not even a salad, like a smoothie, but their definition of a smoothie is like the six-ounce glass cup with the spinach floating in it. My idea of a smoothie is it’s like 40 grams of whey protein with some collagen, and coconut milk, and bone broth, and peanut butter. Yeah. And it’s like a giant Big Gulp, 36-ouncer. But no, these tiny little smoothies. So, I lost, and there’s no gym there, and I was doing some BFR band training just to try to keep a little bit of muscle on. So, I lost. So, now I’m trying to put muscle back on, and I’m not doing like a strict carnivore diet anymore, but it was mostly just lifting more and eating a lot more.

Sal:  Now, how do you feel when you’re bigger versus when you’re smaller? Which one do you like more? What are the differences for you?

Ben:  I kind of like to be bigger.

Sal:  Do you?

Ben:  Yeah.

Sal:  How come?

Ben:  Yeah. I just like the way it makes me feel.

Sal:  Feels good to fill [00:48:03] ______.

Ben:  It feels good. My drive is higher. Honestly, I like to lift and I like to eat, right? And so it’s funny you can just eat and turn into muscle. Yeah. I don’t know. Maybe I’m vain, but I like to keep some meat on my bones. I think from a longevity standpoint, the more meat you have on your bones, healthy functional muscle going into your later years of life. We know that there are correlations between things like grip strength and deadlift weight and longevity. So, I think part of it is just being more resilient overall.

Sal:  Are you measuring your hormones when you’re doing this to see if there’s any changes in testosterone and all that?

Ben:  Yeah. And there is an increase in testosterone, increase in free testosterone. And this concerns a lot of people, also an increase in IGF-1, an increase in insulin, an increase in hemoglobin A1c, and some of those parameters that you could argue are deleterious for longevity. But I didn’t see a steep rise in those but a slight bump in some of these parameters that suggest enhanced mTOR activation, enhanced substrate availability.

Sal:  Well, context matters, doesn’t it? Because I think in the context of an inflammatory pro-cancer state, probably bad. But in the context of a healthy body, those are just anabolic compounds. They’re just making you build muscle.

Ben:  I think a big part of it–and I was talking with Dr. Mercola about this, the whole concept of autophagy paired with mTOR. And I think that you can have the best of both worlds, and I was trying to do this as much as possible and still am when eating a large number of calories, 12 to 16-hour intermittent fast, and then taking agents that mimic autophagy or induce autophagy at night. So, while you’re at sleep, you’re getting a little bit less mTOR activation and a little bit more autophagy.

Sal:  What were you taking?

Ben:  Quercetin, chamomile, Garcinia, Pau D’arco, and glycine. You can buy them in organic raw powdered bags on Amazon, and you can just stir that into hot water before you go to bed at night, and all of those will induce autophagy.

Sal:  Really?

Ben:  So, it’s almost like you’re press pulse cycling, right? So, you wake up. You’re in your 12 to 16-hour fast, you’ve engaged in autophagy, and then you have that compressed feeding window during the day, soul eat until about 8:00 p.m., get a lot of food in the system, stay very anabolic, have a lifting session in that window or an exercise session in that window, and then you go back into autophagy in the evening.

Sal:  So, the amino acid glycine, that’s strange.

Ben:  Yeah.

Sal:  So, that induces autophagy. How is that?

Ben:  I think probably because it balances out the high amounts of methionine that you’re getting from a lot of the protein sources, particularly meat.

Sal:  So, really, what it’s doing is kind of nullifying the mTOR.

Ben:  That’s one of the common complaints made against something like a carnivore diet that’s based on just like ribeye steaks is that you’re not getting enough glycine unless you’re eating nose-to-tail and getting some organ meats, and some bone broth, and things like that. So, just adding in a little bit more glycine in the evening–

Sal:  And it changes inflammatory markers? Because some people say, “Oh, there’s tons more inflammation when you’re eating a lot of meat.”

Ben:  No, no. I actually had less inflammation, and I think it was probably because I was consuming a lot less–well, it’s a very basic diet really when you look at it; tubers, berries, honey, bone broth, nose-to-tail organ meat, right? And so there’s a lot fewer of those plant defense compounds. There’s a lot fewer things like soy or legumes or things that may induce the inflammatory response, even dairy, for example. So, I didn’t see an increase in inflammation.

Sal:  We just watched the documentary, the one produced by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Ben:  Game Changers.

Sal:  Yeah, Game Changers.

Ben:  I want to hear your guys’ opinion on this because I walked in here and I’m not too plugged into what’s going on the documentary scene, but you told me–you asked me if I watched this new documentary. So, what’s going on with Arnold?

Sal:  Well, he co-produced this documentary and it’s really pushing this plant-based or–and they don’t even use the word vegan or vegetarian too much. They say plant-based quite a bit. But they’re pushing this agenda of getting people off meat. The entire documentary did a damn good job and they produced it very, very well at demonizing the consumption of animal products. And they demonized all of it, including high-quality grass-fed meats, organ meats. And it was very–I mean, in my opinion, it was very misleading, these lots of studies that were very misleading.

For example, they talked about B12 and how you can’t get B12 from vegetable sources, but you can’t really get them great from animals either, they said, and so, therefore, everybody should take B12. That’s how they–exactly. That’s how they made that case right there. Or they used a comparison that I thought was silly where they said they talked about antioxidants and said, “A head of lettuce has way more antioxidants than a piece of salmon,” which is a silly comparison because salmon has lots of omega-3 fatty acids and proteins under the nutrients.

Ben:  Not to mention, lettuce is a bioremediant, nature’s filter.

Sal:  Yeah.

Ben:  In a different way. And people say liver is nature’s filter, but in the liver, phase one and phase two pathways just excrete all the toxins into the urine and the stool and the sweat.

Sal:  Lettuce keeps it.

Ben:  Lettuce just keeps it in there. So, when you eat lettuce, unless you know the exact place that lettuce was grown in a farm you got it from, you’re essentially eating a filter that filters that–

Sal:  Same is true for other–

Ben: –a lot of toxins, herbicides, pesticides.

Adam:  They did a lot of sleight of hand moves where they present some information that was true, but then they would go left. And this is why doing this is bad. What was he saying? Those aren’t even connected.

Sal:  Yeah. So, it was a lot of that and it feels like there’s a–especially recently, there’s this really strong vegan push. And for the first time, as far as I can recall, a diet has been politicized because now it’s being connected to the environment and how not eating meat is also better for the environment, and it’s your duty, and it’s a good thing to do. The thing that worries me is this, Ben. In my experience as a trainer, I’d love your opinion on this, in my experience as a trainer, training hundreds, maybe thousands of people by proxy because [00:54:25] ______ of the clients. I’m always blown away by the individual variants that you see with people.

I mean, metabolisms are very complex, your microbiome was like a fingerprint, then you have if you throw in your psychology and your experiences with food and all that stuff. To say that one diet is better for everybody, I don’t care what the diet is, that’s terrible advice because I’ve trained clients who genuinely were healthier on a largely vegan diet. And I’ve also trained clients who ate a lot of meat, mostly meat, and who also had improvements in health. So, for me, that’s the big problem. The big problem is that there’s a huge individual variance there that nobody’s taking account for. And this goes for all diets that talk about being the best diet ever.

The second part is this, and I’d also like your opinion on this, is that when you eat mostly vegetables or vegan diets–now luckily, we live in modern times where I could go to Whole Foods and I have access to an incredibly wide variety of plant-based foods that normally I would never have access to. You got stuff from South–

Ben:  Hale crackers coated in chocolate, everything, just like nature.

Sal:  But I have like food from South America, stuff that’s growing all the time. You would never have that nature. But it takes a lot of planning in nutrient deficiencies. Studies show this. This is not my opinion. This is real documented. Studies show that vegans tend to suffer from more nutrient deficiencies because they just require more planning. And so, if we’re going to talk all these people out of eating meat, what they’ll end up doing is taking the one unprocessed food out of their diet, which is a steak, and replace it with processed something that’s not–

Ben:  Impossible burger.

Sal:  Yeah. Or some crap like that. So, I’d like your opinion on that kind of stuff. We’ll start with the individual variants. What’s your opinion on that?

Ben:  My opinion on the individual variants is that we could say the same thing about a ketogenic diet, right?

Sal:  Absolutely.

Ben:  There are many people with familial hypercholesterolemia, or with what’s called PPAR gene issues, or even gallbladder and liver like actual anatomical issues, who respond very poorly to a high-fat diet, particularly a diet that’s high in saturated fats versus the monounsaturates and smaller amounts of the polyunsaturates. So, you can create an inflammatory firestorm in people who are not genetically adapted to a ketogenic diet, and who in that scenario, such as familial hypercholesterolemia, would respond much better to a diet rich in plant fibers, some amounts of coconut, large amounts of fish, and many Mediterranean fats or what would even be referred to as, if people want to look this up, a Kitavan Islander diet where many of the inhabitants of that island carry the gene for familial hypercholesterolemia and no cardiovascular disease manifest because their diet is structured in such a way that that cholesterol does not become atherosclerotic.

Sal:  Pause there for a second because it makes perfect sense that people who evolved there would develop a genetic capability to produce tremendous amounts of cholesterol because their diets included very little saturated fats and very little dietary cholesterol. And cholesterol is essential for the body. That’s why your body makes it. So, it makes sense for them that their bodies would produce a tremendous amount of cholesterol in that environment. That’s what keeps them alive. You move them to a ketogenic diet and now it’s too much. It’s 5 times 5. It’s 25 now. And they’ve got things multiplying. I’ve seen people who’ve gone ketogenic and have cholesterol levels hit like 400, who have a hypercholesterolaemia. So, I’m glad you brought that up.

Ben:  Or you move them out of their environment. And in many cases, the diet that they’ve developed in the environment that they live in is a diet that they’ve developed because they have discovered over thousands of years that that’s what helps to protect them against either their built-in genetic propensity to a certain disease, or the environment’s impact on their propensity for certain conditions. So, what I mean by that is you look at the Icelandic population who actually should have a very high rate of seasonal affective disorder and depression and they do not because, primarily, of the rich amount of omega-3 fatty acids and DHA that are found in the traditional Icelandic diet, reindeer and fish, for example.

And you uproot that person and you take them out of that dietary context. And into the same dark scenario in, let’s say Seattle, Washington, and you see the Icelandic population, they’re actually manifesting seasonal affective disorder and depression. Or you look at Cameroon, Africa where they have a gene that would normally predispose them to high rates of colon cancer, but that is an extremely fiber-rich diet that they consume over there. And you take that same population and you put them in, say like, Southeast United States and you have many people of African descent dying of colon cancer in Southeast United States because they no longer have adopted the diet that would have protected them in their ancestral context from that disease manifesting.

A final example would be Mexico, right, the Tarahumara Indian tribe. They carry many of the genes that would predispose them to higher rates of diabetes. But the way that they cook and prepare their legumes and their corn and their squash, those are lower glycemic index foods. Then, say like, the refried beans, and the flour tortillas, and the chips, and the soda, and the sweet drinks that they’d be consuming in, say like, a Tex-Mex diet or Southern California scenario and you see diabetes manifests in that population once they’re on that scenario.

So, a big part of this when we’re looking at, “Should I eat a plant-based diet? Should I eat a meat-based diet? Should I eat a mix thereof?” is what did my ancestors eat and what am I genetically predisposed to thrive on? That’s one big part of it. And then, another part of it is actually doing–yeah, customization of the diet. I mean, everybody, everybody I coach, they get a Cyrex food allergy panel and we take a deep dive into their true immunoglobulin reaction to a variety of different foods to ensure that they’re not eating things, that they’re not predisposed to be able to handle, if they have a true allergic reaction towards.

Everybody gets a NutrEval panel, which is a micronutrient analysis, fatty acids, amino acids, all down the range so that we can identify any holes that need to be filled in via supplementation because some people need to take vitamin D. And for others, they’re getting vitamin D toxicity and calcification of the arteries from taking vitamin D because their levels are topped off just fine. Everybody gets a gut test for yeast, fungus, parasites so that we know what they need to be taking or what they don’t need to be taking to address their gut.

So, we can use a blend of ancestral wisdom by looking at what your ancestors ate and what you’re genetically predisposed to do well on, combined with modern science and blood testing, urine testing, and stool testing to determine whether you need to fill in gaps with supplementation, what kind of diet you might be best predisposed towards from a food allergy, food elimination standpoint, and then you can figure out the exact diet that’s right for you.

Sal:  And that’s one of my big problems is if we make this blanket, this is the diet that’s best for everybody, and demonize, not just say this is a good diet but also demonize an entire category of food that humans have eaten forever. We could be setting up a lot of people for some bad health and some bad times. And then, on the environmental sense, nothing’s worse for the environment than unhealthy humans. Unhealthy humans are terrible from the environment. Everything from the medicine that needs to be produced, to their unproductivity, to their attitudes about life, that will poison the Earth faster than almost anything I can think of. And this is the conversation that I’ve been having around this.

There’s also one other part of this band, which is the psychological component of food. You talked about the genetics, their blood. You talked about their microbiome. These are all physiological aspects of a human and how they may react and respond to food. But we completely negate in–we don’t even talk about the psychological piece that there is to food, which in my experience as a trainer, I’ve trained mostly every day regular people, and the part that I had to focus on and talk about and speak to most was the psychological component. And you know what, sometimes foods may not necessarily work for you. Great, physiologically, but psychologically, this is something that you enjoy and that is a part of health.

Studies show that, for example, people who have lots of bad relationships in their lives, that’s as big of a risk factor for poor health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. So, if my mom makes homemade pasta, and I haven’t seen my mom for a while, and I get this wonderful feeling when I eat that pasta with my family. But maybe my genes show that I probably shouldn’t eat a lot of carbs because physiologically–so what? Sometimes it may be you’re doing a little balancing thing. And when we’re making these broad general statements and this huge push for eating a particular way, some people are going to do great; a lot of people are not going to do so great.

Ben:  Yeah. I’ve got two thoughts about that. First, there is a dangerous slippery slope when you get down to the psychological aspects of food because you get into the scenario that I see a lot of people getting into, especially parents, who grew up–and I grew up on all this too, comfort foods, rich creamy Kraft macaroni and cheese, and Pop-Tarts, and Peanut Butter Captain Crunch, Hot Pockets, Take ‘N’ Bake pizza–

Sal:  I feel like you should be smoking weed, but it’s happening.

Ben:  Exactly. Velveeta cheese, chicken biscuit crackers. And the parents say, “Oh, kid, you’re growing up in America. You got to have some of the foods that I grew up on.” So, there can be a slippery slope, and that’s actually where I think there’s a great business opportunity for a lot of companies in the health and fitness sector to develop similar to what Mark Sisson did with mayonnaise, healthy versions of a lot of these comfort foods, right? And then, could you make a Kraft macaroni and cheese and use like a turmeric to get that nice yellow color, and maybe use like a rice or a quinoa pasta that you’ve engineered to get that same mouthfeel but you have the same shape of the noodles and a similar kind of box size that it comes in? And so I think that we can overcome that issue by simply creating healthy versions of a lot of these comfort foods that many of us still crave.

The second part of this I’ve completely forgotten. I totally derailed myself. Yeah. Now, I remember what I was going to say. The second part of this is–and this is an issue that I have with the carnivore diet and experience with the carnivore diet, right? When you look at the carnivore diet, one of the proponents of it–vocal proponent of late is Dr. Paul Saladino. Bless his heart. Super smart guy, very passionate about the diet, very well-educated, and eats this nose-to-tail organ consumption. And if he’s going to have a steak, it’s just like blanched with some salt on it and everything just brown and red and a little bit whitish on the table in front of him. I’ve invited him out to dinner and he’ll show up with his little Ziploc bag with a sheep testicle and some kidney suet and tallow, right?

And when I try to do this at home, and my wife bakes the lovely slow-fermented sourdough cinnamon rolls on a Saturday morning with like an organic raw dairy cream cheese frosting with coconut sugar and takes out the heirloom tomatoes with some basil and some fresh mozzarella drizzled in olive oil. And she makes her wonderful kale and bok choy and Swiss chard salad fresh from the garden and dressed with this lovely citrus vinaigrette. And I sit down at the table and all I’ve got in front of me is a ribeye.

Justin:  And does she eat testicle?

Ben:  Sure. I do agree with Paul that a lot of these plant foods are poor people’s food, their survival foods that we turn to when we couldn’t get access to meat and realize that we got to figure out how to eat plants for survival and deactivate these natural built-in plant defense mechanisms and make a salad out in the wilderness. But over thousands of years, these same plant foods have progressed to be beautiful, lovely, vibrant parts of tradition and culture. Marinara with spaghetti and cinnamon rolls. In Japan, fermented natto with rice and seaweed. And for us to simply shove all that aside and say, “We’re going to myopically eat just one food because all we’re worried about is health,” really, that’s another part of the psychological aspect is we need to consider some of these myopic diets that eliminate a great deal of foods. They’re stripping us of some of the enjoyment of simply being able to gather around a Thanksgiving table and have 12 different items there, and we can eat them all because it’s just part of tradition and happiness.

Sal:  Totally. I 100% agree with you.

Justin:  What’s Paul’s angle? We haven’t had him on the show. I know his team has reached out to us multiple times and we’ve just–we got it. Once we did the whole keto talk enough time and carnivore talk enough time, I was kind of like over the–because we have vitamin C deficiency. How did he explain that?

Ben:  You mean the lack of vitamin C that you’d have on a carnivore diet?

Justin:  Right.

Ben:  I think that he showed data that you can get bioavailable vitamin C from meat, if I remember properly.

Justin:  From organ meat?

Ben:  Yeah, yeah. And a well-structured nose-to-tail carnivore diet does indeed give you just about everything that you need except electrolytes, which is why he throws in salt. And he’s very smart, and he’s very well-researched, and he makes a wonderful case that I agree with that a well-structured nose-to-tail carnivore diet can indeed give you everything that you need to sustain life while not presenting your gut with a lot of the built-in natural plant defense mechanisms that can screw some people over, but it can be a pretty damn restrictive and boring diet. And I think it’s just an elimination diet that someone could follow for a certain period of time. But it’s not for life. The dude’s a bachelor. He doesn’t–

Justin:  For a reason.

Ben:  Yeah. And so, I think–

Adam:  It’s a hard sell.

Ben:  It’d be very easy to do if you’re living on your own and eating whatever you want to eat. But when I gather on the table at the Greenfield house, this returns back to structuring environment like when dinner rolls around and we eat late, so everything’s out of the way by the time we get to dinner. And we’re dragging out Table Topics, or Boggle, or Quiddler, or Balderdash, or Chess, or Exploding Kittens, or Unstable Unicorns, any of these card games, and we sit around the table for like an hour and a half, and we laugh, and we play, and we eat all these foods, and we drink wine, and then we go upstairs, and we play some guitar, ukulele, or piano. And the boys fall asleep reading, and mom and I go in, and we integrate and face each other and chat. And that’s how we end our day, and I just can’t do that in front of a sheep testicle.

Sal:  Yeah. I got a question for you, Ben. There’s a heavy, heavy science side to you, but there’s also a heavy spiritual side to you. Looking at current research when it comes to longevity, I’ve read some articles saying how aging is a disease that can be cured at some point. Scientifically speaking, sounds great. Let’s solve this problem. We don’t have to age. We won’t have any problems with that. The spiritual side of me though thinks that might not be such a good idea because I think there’s a lot we can learn from realizing our own mortality. Where do you stand on that?

Ben:  I’m trying to live as long as I can with the exception that I don’t want to live as long as I can cold, and drive, listen, hungry, and weak because all I’m doing is maximizing autophagy, fasting, and taking a cold bath every day. But the reason that I’m trying to live a long time with good quality of life and good energy is because I believe that every single one of us was put upon this planet with a unique purpose in life, any change that we can affect in the world. And the longer that we’re around, the greater impact that we’re able to make, and the greater we’re able to achieve that purpose. The more we take care of our bodies and try to keep ourselves here as long as we can learning and building upon the learning that we’ve done, the more use that we can be to the world and the greater impact that we’re going to make.

I mean, when I look at guys like Graham Hancock in their philosophy or their theories that we, at one point, as society, were incredibly evolved, that maybe there was some great disaster like a flood that struck at one time. But prior to that, we had freaking like computers. We weren’t walking around like togas and bathrobes like humankind. Even before we built the pyramids and everything else, that seemed to have taken a great deal of engineering. It’s possible that we were very, very well-advanced having had the ability to advance for thousands and thousands and thousands of years, and some would say even millions of years before some great disaster struck and we had to kind of start out again at ground zero. But there’s also a lot of evidence that humans live for a pretty long period of time, too.

Sal:  And it keeps popping up, right? They keep finding the archaeological finds that predates all the history.

Ben:  Yeah. Biblically, they’ve got like Methuselah as 969 years old, or let’s even say 800 years old. Guys, think about this. If you were ancient man or woman and you’re like 50, hopefully, you’ve figured out how to make a fire by that time. And then, you have 750 freaking more years to make this world a better place. And maybe by age 100, you figure out how to make a wheel, right? And I would imagine by about 150, 175, you’re thinking a little bit about electricity. And maybe by the time you’re 200, you’re thinking about how to get something else to do some thinking for you, like a computer chip or binary coding. By the time you’re 500, you probably would have invented a lot of cool shit, right?

And so I think about it that way to a certain extent, too. I’m like, “Geez, if I’ve learned a shit ton about health, and fitness, and nutrition, and spirituality, and happiness, and longevity, by the time I’m 90, and I’ve somehow built my life so I’ve still got 40 more years at that point, think about all the other cool shit I could do to help people.”

Sal:  Sure, sure. Yeah, yeah. The living forever part is the part that I’m like, “I don’t know about that.”

Ben:  Yeah. It’s almost like exponential wisdom that can build over time if you keep yourself around for a while.

Sal:  Yeah, maybe.

Justin:  Now, you’ve had people on your show that talk a lot about like longevity and living a long time. What have you learned from them that’s significant?

Ben:  A lot. That is a huge topic and there’s a–we could talk for hours about longevity and anti-aging. But I would say some of the more exciting fields right now in the anti-aging front, because people are talking about optimize your relationships, caloric restriction, minimize glycemic variability, minimize inflammation, low-level physical activity every day, get out in nature, a lot of the Blue Zones concepts. But when we dig into the more exciting science, some of the things that I think are with real frontier of anti-aging medicine, one would be the use of NAD. We know that NAD levels dramatically decline with age. And by keeping those levels elevated, we can really increase mitochondrial health in a very dramatic way even with age.

So, the use of NAD IVs, NAD patches, which I use very frequently, or even NAD, or similarly to other molecules that are similar to NAD, NR, which is nicotinamide riboside and NMN, which is nicotinamide mononucleotide. These can be used as oral supplementation to keep NAD levels elevated. NAD is one big one.

Sal:  Is NAD patches–are those commercially available or do you have to get them?

Ben:  You can purchase them. I buy them from the NAD clinic in San Diego.

Sal:  Okay.

Ben:  And I wear one–

Justin:  These are to help you get off cigarettes too, is that right?

Ben:  They tend to use, yeah.

Adam:  Oh, really?

Justin:  Oh, wow.

Adam:  That house is bullshit.

Ben:  Very common treatment for addiction and opioid therapy.

Adam:  No shit.

Ben:  Exactly. Higher dose NAD IVs, especially. That’s what that clinic specializes in, actually, and they successfully treat a lot of patients.

Adam:  No kidding.

Ben:  So, NAD, that’s one. Peptides are another. There’s a lot of Russian research, and even Russian human research on decrease of all-cause mortality with two 10-day cycles of a peptide called Epitalon. And they’ve gotten similar results with the peptide called MOTS-c. There’s another one that staves off all the immune system degradation that can occur with age called thymus and alpha 1. And there are companies like Tailor Made Compounding in Kentucky, who have these amino acid sequencers and they can precisely target any type of cellular activities such as mitochondrial proliferation or production of killer T cells or anything like that with peptides, which are usually administered subcutaneously with an insulin syringe, but some are topical.

I’m wearing one right now. It’s a GHK-Cu copper peptide, transdermal delivery, a little Band-Aid right there on my abs, and that increases stem cell mobilization. So, it increases the movement of stem cells from my bone marrow into my blood streams. They can be mobilized for better recovery, healing of injuries, et cetera. So, peptides are really, really cool filled right now in anti-aging. Probably, one of the last ones that I think is based off of research being conducted right now by Dr. David Sinclair, and he has a new book called “Lifespan,” about this, the use of virus that you’d actually be given at an early age that would activate your immune system.

But the virus is actually deactivated. They figure out how to deliver it in a manner to where it stays in your system completely deactivated. And then, when you’re at a later age, like 45 or 50, you can activate the virus and it will do things. And they’ve studied this in rodent models so far, like get rid of gray hair, decreased wrinkles, reversed aging. And they measure this thing called the aging clock, which is actually, not like telomere length, but it’s the RNA and what’s called the nucleoli of the cell. And they’ve shown that with this type of treatment. You can almost like reverse aging with–they call it cellular reprogramming.

Sal:  Or turn into a zombie. I feel like every zombie starts off like this.

Ben:  They’re studying that in rodent models right now, and they’ve achieved something similar. New study came out two weeks ago and all they did was stack. They’re using a lot of off-label pharmaceuticals now for anti-aging. But in this particular study, they showed a two-and-a-half-year reversal of aging by measuring a lot of these DNA markers of aging with the use of metformin, which is–it’s off-label drug that’s commonly used for diabetes. I don’t like it. I think there’s better alternatives. DHEA and growth hormone. And so they used those three and saw profound results from an anti-aging standpoint.

Adam:  Now, of all these things that you’re listing off, how many of them actually carry a lot of weight in comparison to things that we know like good relationships, lowering stress, strength exercise, the big rocks? I mean, if you’re sleeping two to three hours a night, you have a high-stress job and then you’re using all these things, is it worth anything?

Ben:  Therein lies the rub. And I’m going to have him on podcast because I want to throw this question at him, like David Sinclair, that researcher that I mentioned. He’s on metformin and statins, and he’s not exercising, and he’s traveling all over the globe, and I don’t think he’s sleeping that well. And I don’t want to put words in his mouth or paint him in a poor light, but I think that many of these anti-aging researchers or biohackers or whatever, they don’t have the basic foundational principles–

Adam:  It’s the way I defend you always, because everybody that harks on biohacking people, if they try and lump you in that category, I’m like, “You know, Ben really is somebody who I personally can say does all the big things first.” It’s not like you’re doing all this–yeah.

Ben:  You must have the foundation. And a reporter asked me this question last week. He said, “So, what are the best biohacks? Where do I start?” And I said, “I don’t know you. I don’t know if you need to increase your deep sleep versus your REM sleep. I don’t know if for you it’s hormonal optimization or if the hormones are just fine and we need to address white blood cell count. I don’t know if you’ve got rampant inflammation or if inflammation is just fine and we instead need to focus on physical activity.” But I did tell him that other than what we already know that you’ve alluded to from the Blue Zones, Adam, like relationships and not smoking, and properly structured diet, and some elements of fasting, et cetera, I always start with the foundation of mitochondria.

I think mitochondria are the most important thing to take care of if you want to be healthy or live a long time. And there are six things that I address with everybody I work with. Everybody I work with, there’s six variables for mitochondria. Number one, it’s earthing or grounding. But actually, getting in touch with the planet, walking outside barefoot, camping, swimming in the ocean, jumping in the sea, walking on the beach, getting exposed to all these negative ions that the planet emits because when we’re up on jets, when we’re getting bombarded by Wi-Fi, EMF, et cetera, the electrochemical gradient across the cell drops to about negative 20 millivolts, and it should be closer to about negative 60 or so, and getting absorbed or getting negative ions absorbed by the planet.

There’s a whole book about this called “Earthing” by Clint Ober. It goes into the profound impact just being in touch with our planet has in our body, not to mention the beneficial effects of nature in general. That’s one. Number two is light; UVA, UVB, infrared, near-infrared, and red light, preferably from sunlight, being out in the sun every single day. And if you can’t get out in the sun, you buy these fancy biohacking red light panels or red light-producing devices and you simulate that, but ideally get out in the sun.

Adam:  Sorry to interrupt you. To that point, I predict that to be a huge market in the future just because we seem to be more indoors today than we ever were before and on computers and–

Sal:  It’s getting worse.

Adam:  Yeah. Do you think so, too? Do you think red light is going to continue just to explode?

Ben:  Yeah. I think not only red light, but full-spectrum light, light that will produce UVA, UVB, near, red, far, like lights that get as close to simulating what the sun does as possible. Number three and four would be heat and cold, right? Like actual mild amounts of hormesis, which also stimulate mitochondria. So, like a regular sauna practice and a regular cold practice, and exercising, getting hot counts as heat as well. But we know from Finland that regular sauna practice has massive impact on longevity, and we know that jumping in a cold bath, cold lake, taking cold showers, we know that that’s also very helpful for mitochondria.

And then, the last two, if we’re thinking of the human body as a battery, and we’re thinking about this millivolt potential, which heat, cold, earthing, grounding, and light, all affect water and minerals, like good clean water. And there’s a lot going on in the water sector right now like hydrogen water, and deuterium-depleted water, and structured water. And if you find all that confusing, just start with pure, filtered spring water as close as you can get to nature and minerals, where I like putting a pinch of sea salt, taking some electrolytes, using any of these type of full-spectrum minerals that you can get. But I start with those six bases; earthing, grounding, light, heat, cold water, and minerals. And screw the fancy peptides and stem cells and injectable viruses, like if you start with that stuff and then you throw in what you were talking about, all the Blue Zones practices, you’ve got a really solid foundation.

Sal:  Yeah. Of all the things that you’ve–because you’ve tried so many different things. You’ve experimented on yourself quite a bit. You ever have something go wrong where you try some amount and you’re like, “Oh, this [censored] me up a little bit”?

Ben:  What the [censored], I always get asked that question. People always want to know.

Justin:  It’s fun, baby. We want to know.

Ben:  I just get disappointed because I don’t really have it.

Adam:  Well, that’s because I feel like you–he’s such a nerd, he does all the research–

Justin:  What about when you went to go forage plants and then you had a negative reaction? I remember your wife told me that story.

Ben:  That’s not biohacking. That’s like mess enough shit when you’re cooking. That’s [01:23:37] ______ like putting butter in your tea or coffee or whatever. It’s not biohacking cooking like that.

Adam:  I feel like you approach most things pretty skeptical and do a lot of research before you decide to shove it in your own dick. I mean, I don’t think you’re the type of person that would do something like that ’til you already have–

Ben:  Yeah. I mean, there’s times when I thought maybe something was going to–like when I got the stem cells injected in my dick, it turned black and blue for a couple days and I wondered if I actually like–what’s it, tissue necrosis? I got a word for you, Adam. It’s not a bone. You can’t break it. Somebody ever told you that? But I wondered if I got tissue necrosis.

Adam:  Oh, if it doesn’t work, bro, it’s broken. Oh, [01:24:15] ______.

Ben:  Yeah. So, yeah, I thought that that might do something, but it was fine. No. Like, I don’t have any sexy thing that’s happened to me, honestly. Now I’ve done stupider shit and messed myself up more like training for Ironman or doing the death race or whatever I’m going to have with biohacking.

Adam:  Are you running in Tahoe this year? Are you going in Tahoe?

Ben:  Yeah.

Adam:  You are.

Ben:  I’ll be racing in Tahoe.

Adam:  You’re going to race?

Ben:  Yeah.

Adam:  Okay.

Ben:  Yeah. I’m still training pretty hard, and then I’m thinking about hanging up the hat after that and just–

Adam:  Oh, are you?

Ben:  Yeah, just kind of–

Adam:  You think you’re going to move away from a lot of the endurance stuff?

Ben:  I think big time.

Adam:  Yeah.

Ben:  Yeah.

Sal:  Were you going to move more towards what?

Ben:  I’m going to lose and to fire my belly.

Sal:  Really?

Ben:  Just playing mixed doubles tennis, my wife and–

Sal:  Strength training.

Ben:  Starting a little bit more jiu-jitsu rolling with my kids and–

Adam:  Filling out those medium shirts.

Ben:  I mean, you know what, I love to crush it at the gym. I love to go out and work out hard. And I’m to the point now where I cannot be signed up for any race or any competition, and I just still crave. She’s going out and crashing it.

Sal:  Hell yeah.

Ben:  I just feel great when I’m doing that. So, I don’t really need–I used to think I needed that motivation being signed up for a race or whatever, bodybuilding competition, or some type of event, but I’ve realized as I’ve grown older, I’m just wired to move.

Sal:  Absolutely.

Ben:  And as long as I’m moving, I’m happy. I don’t have to be towing the starting line of a race.

Sal:  Excellent. Well, it’s always a good time with you, Ben.

Adam:  Yeah.

Ben:  You guys, too.

Sal:  Good to see you again.

Adam:  Yup.

Ben:  I love you, guys.

Sal:  Thank you. Same here.

Ben:  Well, thanks for listening to today’s show. You can grab all the shownotes, the resources, pretty much everything that I mentioned over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com, along with plenty of other goodies from me, including the highly helpful “Ben Recommends” page, which is a list of pretty much everything that I’ve ever recommended for hormone, sleep, digestion, fat loss, performance, and plenty more. Please, also, know that all the links, all the promo codes, that I mentioned during this and every episode, helped to make this podcast happen and to generate income that enables me to keep bringing you this content every single week. When you listen in, be sure to use the links in the shownotes, use the promo codes that I generate, because that helps to float this thing and keep it coming to you each and every week.

 

 

Every so often, I get together with my fellow fitness-freak podcasting friends—the good fellas from the Mind Pump studios—and we take a rather rough around the edges, occasionally drug or alcohol-infused, definitely entertaining, and edgy foray into everything from longevity to life to religion to parenting to biohacking and beyond.

These always turn out to be incredibly popular podcast episodes, and this latest one, the fifth in our series, is just as crazy as all my other Mind Pump podcasts, including:

  1. The Mysterious Kuwait Muscle-Building Phenomenon, The Too-Much-Protein Myth, Anabolic Triggering Sessions & More With The Mind Pump Podcast Crew.
  2. The Mysterious Micro-Workouts, Turning On Your Butt, Overdosing With Melatonin & More With The Mind Pump Guys
  3. Six-Egg Breakfasts, Ketosis For Bodybuilders, Resetting Weed Tolerance, Kratom Experimentation & Much More With The Mind Pump Guys!
  4. The Official Edgy, Explicit & Epic Podcast With Me & The Mind Pump Crew: Longevity, Religion, Parenting, Biohacking, The Joe Rogan Debates, Snake Oil, Pseudoscience & Beyond.

The hosts of Mind Pump 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.”

The Mind Pump guys are, in no particular order of importance:

Sal DiStefano (follow on Instagram) 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 FitnessFlexIron 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 (follow on Instagram) is an 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 an 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 (follow on Instagramhas an incredible passion to disrupt the personal training industry and create groundbreaking programs and tools that fitness professionals and clients alike can benefit from. The fitness industry in general needs a massive facelift 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 (follow on Instagram) 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 Mind Pump.

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-A woman’s proper place in the home [5:15]

-How to make a killer pesto from plants in your backyard [7:45]

  • My wild pesto recipe:

-The benefits and challenges of unschooling [10:15]

  • Ben’s kids are immersed in nature
  • Have a 2x/month podcast (video) with sponsors and everything
  • Document everything in case the state audits their education
  • Book: 21 Lessons for the 21st Century
  • We need free-thinking, resilient, adaptive workers
  • A free-thinker can invest in productive activities if and when AI replaces their jobs
  • Storyboarding – prep for what the kids are going to learn
  • There are no rules in the Greenfield home – educate about the consequences of their decisions
  • The adults must provide the example
  • Biggest challenge: Doing standardized tests
  • Jiu-jitsu, camps, clinics, etc. provide socialization
  • They’ll go on a rite of passage when they’re 13

-Discussion on ego dissolution [25:11]

  • Plant medicine
  • See yourself in a different light
  • Embrace greatness, or something different if you’re ego is active
  • Eye gazing with one’s mate
  • See each other as spirits, not bodies

-Increasing awareness and legality of nootropics [29:00]

  • Double-edged sword: incredibly powerful and dangerous
  • Of no use without personal discipline and a personal mission
  • Big $$$ to be made in the future
  • Connection between these and open relationships?
  • Do you want short-term pleasure or long-term legacy?
  • Nootropics can build a spiritual connection between two people

-Reconciling the use of nootropics with spiritual discipline [40:45]

  • Everything was put on the planet by our Creator for a specific purpose
  • Anythingcan be used for good or evil
  • Puritanical version of Christianity may be at odds with plant medicine

-How I put on several pounds of muscle in the last few months [45:15]

-Schwarzenegger’s new film [51:50]

  • Game Changers documentary
  • Pushing a plant-based agenda; demonized the consumption of animal products
  • Lots of sleight of hand, misinformation
  • It’s disingenuous to say one diet is superior for everyone
  • What did your ancestors eat, what are you genetically predisposed to eat?
  • Use blood, urine, stool testing to determine which supplementation is appropriate

-The forgotten psychological elements of food [1:02:30]

  • Foods that are not good for you physiologically may be good for you psychologically
  • , bad relationships are worse than smoking
  • Comfort foods can balance the psyche
  • Slippery slope on psychological effects
  • Opportunity for entrepreneurs to create a healthy version of the comfort foods
  • Choose your battles: strict adherence to a diet vs. family bonding

-The proper balance between aging and acknowledging one’s mortality [1:09:50]

-Whether my days as an endurance athlete numbered [1:23:10]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

– The MAPS training plans designed by the Mind Pump crew for fat loss, muscle gain, mobility, sports performance and more.

– Book: 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari

– Autophagy mimicking stack Ben takes at night:

– BGF podcast w/ Paul Saladino on the Carnivore Diet

– BGF podcast: “The Dark Side of Fasting” w/ Dr. Mercola

– Game Changers documentary

– BGF podcast w/ Dr. William Seeds on peptides

– Book: Life Span by Dr. David Sinclair

– Book: Earthing by Clint Ober

– BGF podcast w/ Clint Ober

Episode sponsors:

Kion Coffee: Carefully selected and roasted for taste, purity, high antioxidants and health. Ben Greenfield Fitness listeners, receive a 10% discount off your entire order when you use discount code: BGF10.

kApex: kApex breaks down the fats you eat into fatty acids, which allows you to increase the fatty acid oxidation inside your mitochondria both in your muscle and liver. Get 20% off your order when you use coupon code: GREENFIELDKX

Four Sigmatic: I’ve been using Four Sigmatic products for a while now and I’m impressed by the efficacies of their mushroom products. I use them. I like them. I support the mission! Receive 15% off your Four Sigmatic purchase when you use discount code: BENGREENFIELD

Felix Gray GlassesDon’t go another day looking at screens without the help of some Felix Grays. Visit Felix Gray’s site and get free shipping and 30 days of risk-free returns or exchanges.

 

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