[00:01:32] Podcast Sponsor
[00:04:42] Book and Author Introduction
[00:07:43] The History Of GreenMedInfo
[00:14:01] The Role Of Exosomes In Regeneration
[00:21:49] Whether These Exosomes Can Be Consumed Via Meat Rather Than Plants
[00:26:28] How Genetic Modification Of Plants Alters The RNA Or Exosomes
[00:32:28] Podcast Sponsors
[00:35:54] The Problem With Cow's Milk
[00:42:02] Why Chicken Soup Is The Best Medicine
[00:45:34] The Link Between Apples And Water
[00:55:03] Why Sayer Is A Fan Of Ginkgo Biloba
[00:59:40] What Human Photosynthesis Is And How We Can Take Advantage Of It
[01:04:13] Compounds That Enhance Melanin Consumption
[01:08:45] What Sayer Would Do If He Found Out He Had Cancer
[01:13:50] What Sayer's Typical Daily Diet Looks Like
[01:16:24] Closing the Podcast
[01:19:54] End of Podcast
Ben: On this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.
Sayer: A deficiency of genetically essential information found in berries and certain plants like vegetables and fruits, it's not a deficiency of chemotherapy or radiation. As we prosper, so does it. So, there's this sacred genetic interdependence between plants and animals, and specifically, in fruit. We look at that information context. We can actually make huge strides in reversing many of these cancers.
Ben: Health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking, and much more. My name is Ben Greenfield. Welcome to the show.
Hey, I didn't see you there. That joke never gets old. This is Ben, and I interviewed a guy for today's podcast, who has a website that I think is one of the best medical and health information websites out there. It's called GreenMedInfo. He wrote a book that I was incredibly excited to get my hands on, I read. It's called “Regenerate.” His name is Sayer Ji. And it is amazing. You'll learn why in today's show, but I think you'll really, really dig this show. And if you do listen in, you got to check out his GreenMedInfo website as well.
This podcast is brought to you by Kion. And we have had just flying off the shelves at Kion, especially during this quarantine because we have kept just about everything in stock and available for you our incredibly popular muscle building and anabolic compound, the Kion Aminos, which are also really great for the gut, really great pre-sleep for enhancing sleep and keeping your appetite satiated, great for maintaining muscle, even when you're working out in a fasted state. It's the Swiss Army knife of supplements and it really is I think our most popular product.
Our Kion Lean, our blood sugar control supplement, that one also. I've been wearing a Dexcom lately and experimenting with that, still shocked at how good a job that does keeping my blood glucose low even after I've had, say, a massive mess of sweet potato fries or some red wine or dark chocolate. It just works. And I pop a couple of those before I have any type of carbohydrate intensive meal or alcohol, for example. One of the things you should try if you go over there is the coconutty, chocolatey, sea-salty, mouth-watering goodness of our Clean Energy Bar. It is designed to support energy all day long, nice, low bleed of carbs, gelatin, cocoa nibs, coconut flakes, sea salt, a little bit of organic honey. It's so good, it's so good. It's like crack. So, 20% off of anything at Kion when you go to getkion.com. That's getK-I-O-N.com.
Another sponsor of today's show is Organifi Gold. Organifi Gold has created this powder that repairs your body while you sleep. So, it's got nine different superfoods in it for deep sleep enhancement. So, if you do things like an Oura ring or a WHOOP measurement of deep sleep and you want to mess around with something that could upregulate those specific sleep cycles, then you should try this stuff. It's called Organifi Gold, and it has things like ginger and reishi, which is super relaxing in it, and also has some beta-glucans, which are amazing for your immune system. It's got turkey tail in it, another ultra-powerful medicinal mushroom.
I'm going to let you guys in a little secret. I like to blend this stuff up, like if I'm going to have dessert after dinner, I'll blend it up with coconut milk and CBD oil. And oh my goodness, you want like an over-the-top nighttime sleep aid, that's also a really good anti-inflammatory and really good for immunity. You're killing multiple birds with one stone, violent metaphor, or analogy, or whatever that was. But either way, the Organifi Gold is, it's like a golden milk latte on steroids legally. So, you go to organifi.com/ben. That's Organifi with an “I”, organifi.com/ben. That's going to get you 20% off of anything from Organifi.
Alright, let's go talk to Sayer Ji.
Alright, folks. So, as you know, I read a lot of books and I recently read one that I think tied in nearly every health and nutrition concept that I have read in other books for about the past year into one simple extremely condensed, extremely helpful title that just goes into–well, specifically, how to almost like repair your body, how to regenerate your body using your body's own built-in biological tools along with some very, very cool lifestyle and nutrition-based concepts.
So, I have been following the author of this book for some time because I have repeatedly come across articles that he has written that have absolutely intrigued me. He runs this website called GreenMedInfo, greenmedinfo.com. Nothing to do, at least as far as I'm aware, with marijuana, though I'm sure you could find some CBD-based articles on there. It's kind of funny whenever I see like a green or a green med type of site now, half the time, it's cannabis-related, but GreenMedInfo has been around for a long time and has been putting out tons of extremely good, widely referenced, evidence-based natural health information. It's a wonderful resource.
And my guest on today's podcast is not only the author of this new book, but he's the founder of GreenMedInfo. So, the book is called “Regenerate: Unlocking Your Body's Radical Resilience Through the New Biology.” And the author is Sayer Ji, who can absolutely, correct me if I'm mispronouncing his name, but that's my best —
Ben: Sayer. See, that was close.
Sayer: But that's close enough.
Ben: Yeah. Sayer sounds a little bit softer. Maybe that's the French pronunciation. So, Sayer Ji, he has been in this whole health world for a while. Like I mentioned, he founded GreenMedInfo. He's the CEO and co-founder of Systome Biomed. He's the vice-chairman of the National Health Federation. He's a member of multiple boards in the realms of human nutrition and functional medicine. And his website has actually been around since 2008. So, he's been doing this for quite some time. And again, the book is wonderful. I had a ton of questions after reading the book. And as you guys know, when I record a podcast with the author of a book, it's not to make it so you shouldn't read the book, it's instead to delve into all of the questions that I wanted to take an even deeper dive into. So, I think this podcast is going to be a perfect accompaniment for you to actually read the friggin' book. Everything that we talk about today, including a link to Sayer's book, and also his website, you could find at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/sayer. And that's S-A-Y-E-R. That's BenGreenfieldFitness.com/sayer.
Alright, man, first of all, welcome to the show. I feel like this is long ado.
Sayer: Thank you. It's a great honor to be on your show. I really admire your work and, yeah, it's just great to touch base and share.
Ben: Awesome. Well, so my first question, my first probing question here is GreenMedInfo, it's a really great site. I mean, just chock-full of all sorts of wonderful articles that are well-researched. So, thank you for that. But I'm very curious how this actually came to be because for me, my websites originated from me traveling around the world, doing triathlons, and riding on this little tiny free blog about how I was eating, and how I was fueling, and how I was traveling, and eventually progressing to interviews and the BenGreenfieldFitness.com, et cetera. And I know everybody's got an origination story. So, how'd yours come to be?
Sayer: Great question. I mean, there are many layers secular to maybe deeper sort of new agey explanations we can get into, but I'd say because I was working as an educator for a health food store chain in Florida–it's an interesting situation because in Florida, you can't practice nutrition, you can't do homeopathy and naturopathy is not legal either. So, you've had all these people come into these health food stores looking for answers, and because I had already been an evangelical about the benefits of natural interventions, because I was a really sick infant, and throughout my childhood and adolescence, I was really into natural health personally.
But what I found in that role was that it was really important people had access to what you might call validated third-party research. So, I stumbled upon PubMed in that window and that started 10 years before I created GreenMedInfo. So, I was often going ahead, almost like a reference librarian for them finding research that they needed or thought they needed to affirm. Maybe there were a lot of marketing around certain products being beneficial. So, it was sort of a way to have a check and balance because a lot of people have these anecdotes and personal experiences, but there's also the need for some type of validation. So, that was the original inspiration behind GreenMedInfo in terms of creating the resource.
Ben: Now, when you put together this website, was it just you, PubMed, you sitting down and writing? Did you go with like a team of authors? Because it's a huge site. I'm just curious how you even managed.
Sayer: That's a great question. Well, initially, it was interesting. I was actually just using Yahoo's site builder, which was this copy/paste HTML code site that was really basic and I must have–I had 100,000 clicks under my belt and I realized going in, I needed to create more dynamic database. So, I went ahead on what was Upwork at the time and got a developer to support me in creating a more dynamic way to take this information and make sense of it. So, over time, it became just this labor of love to go ahead and spend almost about three years of–maybe an extra 20 hours a week of just working in front of the LCD screen.
Going through these abstracts and finding these clinical pearls, I was amazed to see there was such a wealth of information on natural interventions, at least being studied pre-clinically. And I felt it would be really amazing to just bundle all those studies together, actually attribute a numeric value so that you could ascertain the quantity and even quality of the study by looking at double-blind, peer-reviewed trials having a greater score than, say, an animal study. And so, over time, it was an attempt to try to just bring the information together and enable those studies to speak for themselves because of course as you know, you can't really make structure function claims about anything. It could be a walnut or a cherry. The FDA, FTC doesn't really allow that.
Ben: Oh, yeah. I mean, I'm even needing to be very careful right now. At the time we're recording this, coronavirus is obviously a thing and I'm–in any language I use, I have to be very careful to simply say, “Take care of your immune system. Here's what you can use to enhance your immune system. Here are some smart steps to take to protect you and your family from viruses.” I'm very careful even throwing around terms like coronavirus remedies, treatments, et cetera, just because you do have to be very careful. You need to be responsible too, admittedly, because there are many natural health strategies or alternative medical strategies. Smearing vitamin C on your forehead is obviously not going to protect you from a pretty robust virus like this. So, I do get the caution, but I also really, really like what you've done with the website as far as weaving in a lot of this PubMed research and really making it apparent to people what's actually well-researched, what's more hypothesis, or what we might call ancestral wisdom or based on Ayurvedic medicine or Chinese traditional medicine, but you tie it all together really nicely.
Sayer: Thank you. Yeah. Well, the idea is just to provide some rudimentary informed consent. Without that information, it's just not possible to make an educated choice. And that's ultimately what I'd like to contribute to, but nothing more than that. Obviously, we're all in control of our health decisions and it's a personal choice.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. Well, folks, if you have a little extra time on your hands, add the website to your feed reader. But I want to actually turn to the book. The book is just chock-full of really a ton of information about how to actually enhance your body's ability to be able to care for itself to, as you say, regenerate, to repair. And one of the first things that you tackle in the book that really caught my eye is exosomes. Exosomes are something that I've discussed on this podcast before with mostly physicians, who are doing things like co-administering injectable exosomes from labs such as Kimera Labs down, kind of in your neck of the woods, down towards Florida into people along with stem cells to enhance the signaling capabilities of those stem cells.
There are a couple of regenerative medicine doctors I've interviewed who are doing intravenous administration of exosomes. But you took a different perspective, or you have a different angle when it comes to exosomes, and specifically, the role they play in regeneration and also the plant-based nature of them. So, I would love to hear you describe in your words exosomes and the role that they play in regeneration. And then I think we can probably take a little bit deeper dive into some of the things that you've discovered as far as plant-based exosomes and RNA.
Sayer: Sure. I am so excited by this topic because it wasn't until recently that we even understood that all the cells in living beings including us secrete what look very much like viruses, actually, which are these little particles in the same size ranges viruses, which are about 90 nanometers. So, we have this very small invisible particle being secreted by cells, including the things that we eat. So, it could be rice would contain exosomes, and they end up actually carrying very potent genetic information, including microRNAs, which are now known to govern the expression of the majority of the protein coding genes in the human genome. So, they, in a way, are interspecies communication tools so that when we eat food, it literally communicates very important information to our genes and can activate certain pathways. So, I found that to be really a profound discovery.
In the book, we discussed ways in which food as information may actually be one of the key ways to resolve a number of chronic diseases that we often associate with defective genetic patterns inherited by distant ancestors. Whereas in fact, it's really more about what we are or aren't eating and I think the microRNA exosome connection helps explain that.
Ben: Okay. So, exosomes essentially are carrying microRNA. So, there are these tiny, nanoparticle size vesicles that I know can carry information, which is why they're being used in modern medicine as these signaling molecules that someone would use with, for example, something like stem cells. But it sounds to me like what you're saying is that exosomes can also be consumed orally via certain plant matter and actually carry the RNA from what we've consumed into our bodies.
Sayer: Yes. So, they contain a number of things including messenger RNA and lipids and proteins, but I think when it comes to understanding in this sort of post-genomic era we now find ourselves in after 2005 with the first draft of the human genome being completed where they only found approximately 20,000 protein-coding genes, same as found in our earthworms, they're throwing up their hands. Like, how can we explain the complexity of the human body much less a single cell if we don't have enough information in this long-heralded holy grail of Orthodox genetics. And so, in other words, the microRNA piece is important because we now know that the 98% of the human genome that they call junk, which is probably better described as a dark matter of the human genome, actually contains a lot of RNA, and that the microRNAs are what's probably helping to explain the vast complexity of species like our own.
And so, when we find this out, we also start looking and finding that food contains these microRNAs and there's like this light bulb of, “Oh, okay. So, we actually outsource the regulation of our own genomes expression to certain foods over millions of years of coevolution.” The plants that are known as angiosperms, which produce fruit and sub-10 70% of the world's food supply that's including grains, et cetera, they coevolved for several hundred million years with complex animal life, Metazoa when it emerged. So, there was this interdependence woven genetically between plants and animals that helps explain why certain foods can completely transform one's health, or said differently, lacking certain foods can lead to really serious diseases like cancer, one could consider a deficiency of genetically essential information found in berries and certain plants like vegetables and fruits. It's not a deficiency of chemotherapy or radiation.
Ben: So, when you're talking about these exosomes that are going to deliver specific components of plant-based RNA into us, what then would be some of the foods that would contain these exosomes that would give us some kind of a beneficial effect upon consumption of those foods? Like, how the RNA from, let's say, whether it's broccoli or ginger or something else like that actually affect our bodies, and what are some foods that we could eat to almost get access to these oral exosomes?
Sayer: Great question. In fact, what we found in the literature is that ginger, for example, has these exosome nanoparticles that are very powerful in terms of affecting the expression of like interleukin 10 and various different enzymes associated with inflammation. So, there are many reasons why these highly complex plants that we so love, their spices in the ancestral tradition have benefit. But I think the exosome piece is now really coming into the forefront. There was a study done on rodents where they induced a–chemically induced colitis, basically, and they were able to show with grape-derived exosomes a complete regeneration of the lining of the intestine, and they identified this as activating the stem cells in that tissue. So, there is a lot of really compelling research now that's emerging on the role of these exosomes and again regulating and helping us to regenerate our tissues.
Ben: Okay. So, when it comes to something like, let's say–you said–was it broccoli was the one that impacted cancer?
Sayer: The broccoli, definitely gingers, another one that's really well-known. Yeah.
Ben: Okay. So, when we consume, let's say broccoli or ginger, the RNA is, or the microRNA more specifically is actually in these vesicles. And when that hits our gut, these are going to somehow pass into the bloodstream and then interact with, what would it be, cell surface receptors in some way?
Sayer: As I understand, yes.
Ben: Okay. So, something like ginger, for example, would contain these exosome-like nanoparticles that would then increase anti-inflammatory signaling, or if you looked at something like–I think in the book you talked about broccoli and breast cancer, how the exosomes of that or from that might actually downregulate some of the breast cancer genetic expression, or have an impact on breast cancer. I think another one you talked about it is berries and how those might actually have an impact as well, the exosomes from those, but it kind of begs the question in this day and age, and I would hate to throw you a curveball here, but I'd love to hear your thoughts on it anyways.
There's so many people talking about the built-in plant-defense mechanisms and the problem, and you'll hear this often in the carnivore diet or the Paleo diet sector, the problem with these built-in plant-defense mechanisms. But of course I've noted on GreenMedInfo and in your book a lot of these exosomes are coming from plant-based matter, and correct me if I'm wrong, if we can get them from animals too, fill me in. But what are your thoughts on plant-defense mechanisms? And as a follow-up to that, not to throw too much at you, can we also get the same type of nanoparticles from meat that we consume?
Sayer: No. Great questions, and yes, you can get exosomal effects and exosomes from animal products. In fact, I think that's one of the primary arguments against consuming cow's milk. Obviously, there's a beta case in alpha one and two varieties, the former being more incompatible with human physiology. But yes, any living thing will produce these exosomes and we'll have this theoretically pretty powerful genetic information, the microRNA information. But the question I love around anti-nutrients, if you will–or let's talk about lectin specifically, what I'm starting to better understand about this interkingdom communication that is orchestrated through exosomes. So, plants and animals and fungi, for example, all can now communicate essential genetic information to one another horizontally in real-time, which is exactly what viruses are, right? There are pieces of genetic information in search of chromosomes and they are able to get around the several hundred-thousand-year process of changing these protein-coding nucleotide sequences in the old model of how genetic information is carried on.
So, yes, certain foods are going to have more of a defense against us. I like to call lectins invisible thorns for that reason, specifically focusing on wheat lectin. I recently had a discussion with Dr. Gundry on this topic because we've been dabbling in this for many, many years and it's interesting because actually, lectins do confer certain benefits in certain contexts. So, even wheat lectin, which I spent a good amount of time researching–in fact, back in 2007 is when I first published my essay, “The Dark Side of Wheat.” That's even before GreenMedInfo existed. And it was really looking at the problem of lectins. But wheat lectin could actually inhibit certain types of pancreatic cancer. So, it can be a medicine in a certain context.
Generally speaking, it's rather inflammatory, and there's actually a number of foods, even the gluten-free sector, like let's say rice and potato, that actually contain what are called chitin-binding lectins, which is what wheat lectin is essentially. And tomatoes obviously have the similar type of chitin-binding activity. That's important because chitin is comprised of glucosamine, ultimately. And that's what this lectin's target in the human body, which is one reason why millions of people take glucosamine extracted from sea bugs, basically, like crab shells to block the action of these lectins instead of it going into the system throughout the body.
Ben: Is that the component of some of these supplements that are sold as like lectin blockers is something like this triton from–what did you say the triton is derived from?
Sayer: It's from like crab shells and —
Sayer: Yeah, it's exactly. N-acetylglucosamine is one of the compounds. So, wheat lectin is very specific, but it does seem to imply that, yes, certain plants don't want to be eaten in excess by humans, and the grasses as a whole are in that category. So, the monocots, if you will. That's why in regenerating them, I think your work and a lot of the Paleo folks have been really trying to throw grains under the bus, and I think for good reason because if we're looking at a really ancient ancestral template, we're looking at different types of exosomes too that we probably consume for several more hundred thousand years than obviously grains because arguably, it was only 5,000 years BC in the Fertile Crescent that we consume them in mass. Anyway, I know it's a lot of information, so hopefully, that made some sense.
Ben: Yeah, it does, and later on, I actually want to get into some of your ideas on evolutionary mismatches and what some of the most dangerous foods in a Western diet are. So, we might revisit this just a little bit. But continuing on with the discussion about exosomes. So, if plants can indeed pass on RNA to us via consumption, those RNA can act as signaling molecules and cause-specific cellular effects, if a plant has been genetically modified, does that introduce any wrenches into this equation in terms of altering the nature of the RNA or the nature of the exosome?
Sayer: Absolutely. In fact, what happened in 2017 is the EPA silently approved Dow, and at the time, Monsanto's first RNA interference GMO corn, basically. It's called RNAi corn. And the reason why this is the new type of GMO on the market is because they're also identifying this powerful role that microRNA has in silencing genes, and basically changing the structure and function of organisms. So, technically, it was approved. And so, to answer the question, basically, the problem is is that there are a number of these small RNAs in grains that people have consumed again for thousands of years that are being tinkered with by these biotech companies because they understand that food is information, obviously, and RNA interference biotechnology is the next wave of GMOs. It's a completely different approach. So, the problem is they're targeting the silencing of certain structures within this corn that when we consume them, there's molecular homology with human genes. So, we don't know what will happen as far as the off-target effects of this new type of corn. It's actually released onto the market as we speak, but I imagine it's going to have a lot of adverse effects on human health.
Ben: Interesting. Do you have any hypothesis as to what any of the adverse effects might be? Because one of the things people say with GMO is that it may have an impact on the human gut, specifically the gut lining, and that some of these species that have been I guess programmed to resist something like certain insects or something like that can do so by poking holes in the skeleton or in the cells of an insect and that they might do the same thing in the cell wall of a human such as the gut wall. Have you come across anything like that?
Sayer: Well, in this case, it's not so much pesticidal like the old GMOs, right?
Sayer: With BT, built-in, which obviously I do think probably caused quite a lot of permeability even in animals in terms of gut health. But I do think what we're dealing with here is an order of magnitude greater concern because what Monsanto's own research on the topic has shown, I've reported on this agreement info previously, in 2009, they did a study evaluating the presence of all these potential RNA targets within corn and they found that basically, there's such an overlap with the same gene structures in human cells because plants, animals, fungi actually share a lot of genes in common that there could be several hundred different genes in the human body that could be silenced by consuming this RNAi GMO corn. So, yeah, it's a big concern of mine. It's another reason why I think whatever we can do, making sure we have a way to identify GMO food, and then obviously, avoid it, like the plague. That would be my suggestion.
Ben: Yeah. And look, before we move on to some of the foods that you're real big fan of and the foods that I think are going to be more damaging, I mean, to wrap this up with a bow, for me, when I read books like yours that go into everything from berry anthocyanidins and their anti-cancer properties to the ability of, for example, ginger to decrease some of these potent inflammation signaling molecules to carrots and grapefruit and all these other plants and herbs and spices that contain not only beneficial exosomes, but other compounds that, yes, often in in vivo and cell cultures can prove to be somewhat toxic, but in vitro over and over again appear to potentially increase cellular resilience.
I can't get on the full meat-only bandwagon or the myopic elimination of many of these plants, especially when treated properly, fermented, soaked, sprouted, et cetera. I get the idea that we could get the same autophagy from things like cold, and heat, and sunlight, and exercise, but man, the more that I read about an inclusion of a large variety of plant matter prepared properly to enhance cellular resilience and regeneration, the more I'm convinced that an all-meat diet aside from being used as like an autoimmune strategy or as a gut healing strategy isn't necessarily something that fits for life. That's my own take. I used to do huge smoothies full of handfuls of kale and enormous what I called big ass salads for lunch. I've stepped back on a lot of that, but I consider a lot of these plants, herbs, spices, berries, et cetera, to almost be like medicine to be used as condiments when combined with some really nutrient-dense animal foods, and fish, and eggs, and liver. And so, that's kind of my approach.
Sayer: I mean, I love that, Ben. I think I'm completely in agreement. When you're taking kale, let's say you just create just a little serving of it, it's like medicine, it's not unlike soy, which I actually am an advocate of taken in that kind of medicinal context. But in larger amounts, it could be completely “poisonous” for us. So, yeah, I'm in agreement with you.
Ben: Hey, I want to interrupt today's show to tell you about the wonderful, wonderful animal or insect called the bee. It's an insect. I'm pretty sure it's not an animal. It's an insect, but it's a super insect. These little bees fly around their hives and they create things like royal jelly, and bee propolis, and bee pollen, and wonderful raw organic honey. And then this company, today's sponsor, Beekeeper's Natural, what they do is they harvest all of this from the bees in a very sustainable manner. They've got no artificial ingredients, no cheap fillers, no refined sugars, no pesticide residue.
And what they do is they create compounds like their propolis throat spray, which has over 300 different vitamins and minerals and compounds. And if you feel a sore throat start to come on, you just spray some of this right down there in the throat, easy to pack on-the-go, TSA-friendly, great for crowded spaces to protect yourself and your immune system. They've got their BLXR brain fuel, which is the coffee of the bees, I call it. It's wonderful for fighting brain fog and enhancing focus and concentration, but with no jitters, just these little vials of royal jelly, ginkgo biloba, and bacopa monnieri.
And then they also, and this is one of my favorites because I sprinkle it on my smoothies, their bee pollen. Bee pollen has a ton of natural enzymes and vitamins in it. They get theirs from the highest quality bee foraging grounds, those badass bees out in their foraging grounds. They don't heat it, they don't treat it over at Beekeeper's Natural so it preserves all the enzymes, all the vitamins. So, good, sprinkled on salads, on smoothies, try a little bit on some avocado toast or a salad. It's really good. So, you get 15% off of anything from Beekeeper's Naturals. And to do that, you just go to beekeepersnaturals.com/ben. That's beekeepersnaturals.com/ben and use code BEN to save 15% off.
And then do you know what just arrived at my house? Birthday cake. The brand new birthday cake flavored cereal from our friends at Magic Spoon, who have cracked the code on creating the most unique and nostalgic flavors of cereal, but it's all low-carb, keto-friendly, zero sugar, high protein, gluten-free, grain-free, and it is addictively good. You pour a little bit of hemp milk or almond milk or coconut milk over this stuff. My kids love it. My kids are actually making no-bake energy bars today with Magic Spoon cereal. So, even if you get the cereal and you aren't just pouring over milk, you can use a NutriBullet, you can grind it up, you can use it in recipes, you can use it as toppings, sky's the limit. So, we're figuring out all sorts of alternate cereal uses with this stuff, too.
My boys' cooking podcast, by the way, is at a gogreenfields.com. And if you want to see some of the cool things they're doing with cereal, go to gogreenfields.com. They do a little 10-minute podcast every couple of weeks or so with a new cooking tip. They're going to show you how to use cereal to make amazing recipes. So, you have to check that one out. Magic Spoon has 100% happiness guarantee. So, if you don't love their cereal, which you will, they'll refund it, no questions asked. So, you go to magicspoon.com. They're going to give all my listeners free shipping with code BENGREENFIELD when you check out. Just go to magicspoon.com. Use code BENGREENFIELD and try, please, their new birthday cake flavor because it will knock your socks off.
I found it fascinating when you talk about some of the worst offenders, some of the things that you personally would not go near when it comes to modern foods that would present, as you described in the book, an evolutionary mismatch, things that human beings or cells or guts have really not evolved to be able to deal with. One that you're quite vocal about is something that you briefly visited just now, and that was milk. Why is milk such an issue?
Sayer: Well, I have to say I had my own personal reasons why I've had a vendetta against cow's milk, if you will, because at six months of age, yeah, I was diagnosed with severe bronchial asthma, and it was until 17 when I removed cow's milk that it went completely into remission, this lifelong source of suffering. So, for me, it was clear that it was an incompatible food. Certainly, my mom's got blond hair, blue eyes, fair skin, and I believe she's been able to tolerate it, if not, in some way benefit from it. But I'm a genetic mix between Korean and her gene. So, for me, it just didn't work out.
And obviously, we've come up with culturing to reproduce the multi-chambered stomach of this animal and reduce the problematic antigenic proteins to culturing. And then, of course, there's different types of cow's milk protein. The beta-casein alpha 2 variety would be I think much more beneficial, if you will. But when it comes to the informational aspect of food and the presence of bovine exosomes intended for baby calves, I think we have even greater support now for what a lot of the milk haters have been saying for so long, which is that it's just not meant for humans. And so, I think there's some value to that, but I also don't like to get too extreme because I do think “orthorexia” is itself sort of a disease vector, right?
Sayer: Right. I mean, Joe Rogan said something really hilarious at one point about some vegan just sort of loosely throwing cow's milk under the bus because it causes cancer. And he's like, “If you're that weak,” and he used a much more intense word than that, “then you should die.” Meaning like, are we that afraid of everything that it becomes that important and we're so neurotic? So, yes, for me, it was probably life-saving on sublevel to get it out of my diet, but it's not going to be the case for everyone. So, I don't mean to imply my philosophy on nutrition is going to apply to everyone.
Ben: Yeah. It makes sense, but when you take into consideration that these bovine microRNA containing exosomes actually can carry some pretty significant immunoregulatory cargo, and you consider that we have readily available to us now things like goat's milk, or if you visit the website for A2 milk, many stores are now selling A2 milk. There's a company in California I order from sometimes, it sells camel's milk that my kids absolutely love. It really has greater implications I think than just, say, occasional congestion or an upset tummy. I've podcasted just in the past year with people who talk about this underlying nasal congestion in adults and children, many of whom are getting it from commercial dairy or A1 dairy resulting in changes to the jaw structure, and to the biome of the mouth, and to the crowding of the teeth, and to overall posture of the head and the neck due to the forced mouth breathing and the inhibition of the ability to be able to properly breathe through the nose, which of course also impacts nitric oxide production, which is important for heart health that impacts exercise tolerance and VO2 max. It impacts the warming of the air as it gets into the lungs. And so, I think some of this stuff goes deeper than we might consider at first glance.
Sayer: Amen. I mean, yes, you had in homogenization. Look, they put titanium dioxide into the milk because it's just gross yellow putrid. I mean, the mass produced obviously industrial is just absurd with rBGH and all the other areas of concern. So, yeah, I think if we could get–obviously, they're big advocates of raw organic local. There's definitely a lot to be said for that. And even in Gandhi's own nutritional writings, he was saying that in the case of those who only ate plant material, many would actually end up getting sick, and just adding a little milk was enough for them to not have to eat meat. So, there's definitely more to this story. And we're sort of luxuriating. We're so wealthy that we don't have to think about just how much we have. But many of us are obviously digging our graves with our teeth still and food is more recreational self-medication. It's not really about serving the body's fundamental needs.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. And sometimes for people who say, “What the hell, Ben? You're some rich effort talking about buying camel's milk online.” But I mean, you can go to a variety of different websites, like realmilk.com is a perfect example. And you can actually find not only good local raw milk often in the form of A2, but you can join CSAs. We invested in goats, and yeah, that one-time investment is paying off first now because we have eight Nigerian Dwarf goats that we can milk. And so, yeah. I mean, there are ways around this. You just have to think outside the friggin' box. And if it comes down to it, I mean, at least just begin to have unsweetened coconut milk or other forms of white creamy stuff that lends creaminess or gives you the same taste as milk without necessarily having milk.
Now, as an alternative beverage, one thing I noted, one of the very first things that you talk about in the book as you pivot from some of these harmful exosomal compounds and helpful exosomal compounds is this idea of chicken soup, which is so simple, but you introduced it in the book as like the food to start with. Why is that?
Sayer: I just love it as an example of culinary tradition and just this concept that, for example, those who might believe that they have some type of a deadly virus, they're being told to take Tamiflu, which is extremely toxic to the point where the Japanese when they were introducing it were having children jump off buildings because of the neuropsychiatric side effects. It's just one example of something that has been studied clinically to have really profound effects on some of the biomarkers for immunity, things like interleukin and just white blood cell count. There's so many aspects to it that are just validated now by modern medicine, but it's just an example too of something that is just very warming and nurturing, and I find it to be just the best medicine.
Ben: Okay. So, when it comes to chicken soup, those of you listening in may, of course, be familiar with chicken soup by its sexy new title, bone broth, and it's something that obviously seems to have taken the health world by storm. But one simple tip I want to give to people, I don't know how you do this–you can obviously order bone broth. I have one company that I like, Kettle and Fire that I get boxed bone broth with or from, which is super convenient. But man, buying just a cheap-ass Crock-Pot, keeping it on your kitchen counter–my wife will get a chicken a couple times a week, a whole organic chicken and roast the chicken, which is–it's one of the simplest recipes that you can make. But we'll take those bones, toss them in the Crock-Pot with water, with ginger, with vinegar, with a squeeze of a few lemons.
And then when people have a few leftovers, it's almost like a semi-compost pile, like we'll shove a few herbs, a few spices in there, maybe a few extra bones leftover that the kids didn't eat when they were having their chicken legs or the thighs, and you just have this wonderful nourishing medicine on your kitchen counter that–my only problem with it is it makes the house smell so wonderful. I'm kind of constantly hungry. It's like when my wife bakes sourdough cinnamon rolls in the morning, it's all I can do to not get the get the saliva to shut down. But man, just a countertop Crock-Pot running in your house all the time is one of the best things you can do, especially with the current flu and virus consideration, having some of that in your counter for your immune system is amazing.
Sayer: I totally agree. And I mean, it's an example I touched on in the book of what they call an epigenetic inheritance system really is recipes, basically. They are the original prescriptions and they have just the right amount of these ingredients that may have been indispensable for our survival to present-day life. So, there's something about it that's not apparent on the surface, but these recipes carry a lot of healing information.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. So, in addition to chicken soup, let's talk about another really expensive, hard to find compound that you also tackle early in the book, apples. You appear to be a pretty big fan of apples. You're the second book I've read in the past few weeks actually that gets into apples. And another book I read that I'm going to get the author on, “Peak Human” by Joel Greene. He's a huge fan of resetting the gut biome and introducing Akkermansia bacteria through the consumption about four weeks of apple skins, which I'm sure would just freak out any carnivore diet enthusiasts, but it is what it is. And you actually have some interesting thoughts about apples, specifically, regarding the link between apples and water, the fourth phase of water, which was studied by a previous podcast guest of mine Dr. Gerald Pollack. So, what is it about apples and water, or apples in general that make them such a big part of your book?
Sayer: Well, you know, I love Gerald's work. I mean, he's just such a revolutionary on some level intellectually. So, yeah. I mean, any source of biological water, if you will, we can call it structured water or water that has that exclusion zone of hexagonal H3O2, which acts really kind of like both a storage apparatus for energy and information. And so, apples have obviously that going forward dissolved oxygen and pectin, which to me is amazing because after Fukushima did a deep dive into the literature on what remediation strategies were taken in Chernobyl, it was apple pectin that was used to save the lives of tens of thousands of children because it was able to bind with these radioisotopes and get it out of the body.
That's just sort of like the exoteric aspect to apple, but there's actually I think far more to it in terms of it–actually, mystically speaking, it is a torus, which is arguably the most universal geometry underpinning reality. But it has these meristematic cells, which are stem cells, plant stem cells basically distributed throughout its tissue. And these cells ultimately derive from the same origin as our own germline cells, which is the last universal common ancestor cell of about 3.4 billion years ago. This cell has been replicating near infinitely to get all living things up to this moment in time. And so, just this notion of there being some kind of immortal cell, that is obviously at the basis for our own resilience today and that it's found in other living things. That to me is really exciting.
So, I think there's something deeper on a more esoteric level happening when it comes to eating something like this perfect food. I mean, we can look at it as software as well. So, a lot of research that I've accumulated looking at what's called the ovariectomy-induced model of osteoporosis, they take female rodents, take out the ovaries, induce full-blown osteoporosis and menopausal symptoms, much like happens in us human mammals. And you give one group orange, or apple, or plum, or pomegranate, and it's as if you have not taken out their ovary. And so, this was like a Eureka moment for me because I was realizing these plants have this delicious exterior so that we can disperse the seeds for it. So, why would it not want to benefit us profoundly and increase our own fertility and resilience? Because as we prosper, so does it.
So, there's this sacred genetic interdependence between plants and animals, and specifically, in fruit. So, what you're getting is not just all these compounds including powerful polyphenols in apples, but you're getting information that is probably essential for our health. And I would say reproductive cardiovascular. We can go into specific organ systems that benefit, but yeah, apples truly do keep a doctor away, not just by having a weapon to throw at them, but by not needing to fall prey to excessive diagnosis and medications.
Ben: Yeah. I thought it was interesting in the book how you talk about–I believe it was a British Medical Journal study that found the vascular benefits of eating one apple a day was equivalent to the benefits of taking a modern statin drug, which is pretty profound in and of itself. But just a couple of thoughts on apples, because I know people are going to wonder, first of all, it is part of the clean diet, almost like the reboot that you present in the book, which is honestly, it's very similar to another very good book I just read by Joel Greene called “Peak Humans” where you use apples and apple skins as a way to kind of reboot the gut for a short period of time.
And when you describe apples as kind of like the perfect food, of course, there's going to be a bunch of people shouting through the podcast, “Wait, eggs are the perfect food, livers are the perfect food. You're going to waste away to nothing because apples do not have enough digestible protein in them, et cetera.” However, as you point out in the book, you're actually purposefully introducing autophagy. You admit in the book that an apple is going to emit a lot of the protein and the fats that your body needs, but it's a short-term self-eating or autophagy process you're bringing the body through. And there's also of course, as I just hinted on it, if you're eating the skin, an effect on Akkermansia.
And then you would of course, as you outlined in the book, you're going to reintroduce some proteins and some fats and some of these other superfoods that you talked about in the book. But then the other thing that people get concerned about is of course fructose. Fructose makes you fat, fructose gives you non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, fructose is going to induce insulin insensitivity, fructose is poison. But I also want to point out the fact to people that the deleterious impact of fructose has only been demonstrably proved in a hypercaloric state. Meaning, in a state of isocaloric or hypocaloric intake, fructose is simply either burnt or utilized as metabolic energy or is, in some cases, depending on the enzyme, that the tissue has that's responsible for this converted into glycogen, and in no way is going to spill over into excess triglycerides or produce fatty liver streaks or something like that.
The problem with fructose is fructose in the context of a hypercaloric diet. Meaning, soda, Western diet. Maybe the people who are drinking eight bananas and three apples and four plums a day and they're juicing or their shake protocol. Those are the people who need to worry about excess fructose consumption. It's actually very difficult if I were to tell you, kind of like the potato diet, to just eat apples for the next week. You would actually have a very difficult time overeating apples, the structured water and that gel-like component of the structured water that you talked about in the books there along with the fiber, et cetera. And also, of course, the mild food boredom. You're not going to get non-alcoholic fatty liver disease from eating apples.
Sayer: Oh, well, no, and I love what you said. I mean, the reality is, yes, fructose in isolation is absolutely toxic when consumed at the rates that we're consuming them here.
Ben: Well, no. It's not even toxic in isolation. It's toxic if you already have liver and muscle and tissue glycogen levels that have been topped off, and then you throw extra fructose on top of that. But fructose in and of itself, whether from honey or apples or anything else is not poison.
Sayer: No. Yeah. I mean, it's so interesting because for–Joe Mercola, we worked for a long time together in terms of research, and I did a whole section agreement info on fructose toxicity, and I was just amazed to find over 100 different conditions that were studied when it came to looking at the isolate form. Now, when found in the context of a whole food like an apple, it's really informationally, qualitatively, completely different. There's actually hypoglycemic compounds in apples that have been identified.
So, for those who are concerned, absolutely agree, you're not going to really have to worry about the issues associated with regular fructose. But yeah, you've hit on so many things here. It's hard to know what to say next. I mean, I believe that the simplification is in the food boredom you speak to, that's actually the real embedded opportunity here because when people start to really understand what true hunger is, you start to develop a relationship with yourself that's very different when you eat apples. When you're actually hungry for another, you have to think, “Well, am I really hungry? because all I have is eating apple.” It just totally resets your whole way of relating to food, and it opens up so much space and you start to have access to a type of energy that you can't attribute to your caloric intake. It's a way of fasting, if you will, that isn't as painful.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. Well, I have so many things that I want to talk to you about, but I need to rank prioritize because I know time is limited and we have to talk about human photosynthesis, we have to get into that. Your website was actually one of the first places that I kind of discovered the link between chlorella, chlorophyll, and sunlight. And since then, I've just been steeped recently in literature regarding human photosynthesis. But before we get into that, there's one other kind of food compound possibly too that I want to talk about. One is all over in your book. So, I would be remiss not to mention it, and it's ginkgo biloba. You are a huge fan of gingko biloba. I'd love for you to explain why and also get a little bit if you can into like sourcing, dosing, et cetera, because your book really got me thinking about using gingko a little more.
Sayer: Yeah. I love the story about how on ground zero in Hiroshima gingko trees were the only plants that actually survived. And so, they're considered a living fossil because of the fossil record showing they've been around for a quarter of a billion years at least. And there's just so much research now, at least from what I've gathered, on its longevity promoting properties. I haven't yet fully figured out why that is, but being that it is a plant that has been in ancient culture for some time as a medicine, I think it is one that we should revisit, especially given prevalence of neurodegenerative conditions. As far as the research, I mean, again GreenMedInfo I think has the best location for all of it. But yeah, I think it's just one of many examples of plants conferring profound longevity benefits to humans if we can find the right ones.
Ben: Okay. So, this gingko plant appears to be such an ancient plant that's so resilient that it can do things like withstand something like Fukushima, or I believe it was Hiroshima, actually, the —
Sayer: Yes, Hiroshima.
Ben: Yeah, the Hiroshima atomic bombing. So, if we know that and we know how hardy this plant is, and we're going to say, “Okay, let's go with the doctrine of signatures. And if this thing is so tough, maybe we can consume some compounds from it and induce cellular resilience in ourselves,” which of course for any white lab coat wearing scientist is a chuckle fest, but I still like to explore these kind of topics. So, get into how we would actually harvest gingko biloba and consume it, like how are you using gingko biloba?
Sayer: Well, I mean, for me, because I did have a background with helping people find actual, like the best supplement forms, I mean, there is a well-known issue with gingko, which is it has a sort of a compound related to vitamin B6 that can inhibit it. So, it's called ginkgo toxin. So, some manufacturers will actually standardize and make sure it doesn't contain that. Others might just take additional B6 if they're concerned about the issue. But yeah, as far as ginkgo, the leaf extract is what's been researched clinically and there's a ton of research on its benefits for wide range of conditions. So, not just for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, but on GreenMedInfo, there's 180 conditions that have been studied, including things like angina, glaucoma, tinnitus, angina, asthma, liver cancer. I mean, it's amazing the amount of research.
Ben: Okay. Got it. So, you'd be looking for the leaf extract. One Chinese herbologist I know uses it pretty extensively in his formulations, previous podcast guest of mine, Roger Drummer, who's in Oregon and he puts it into this stuff called TianChi, which I'll occasionally use as kind of like a nootropic pick-me-up. And I don't know how much ginkgo, which I'm using the hard G now after hearing you pronounce it, what I assume to be in the proper way, but there's this gingko. I don't know how much is in there, but it is very interesting. And again, for those of you listening in, because some of these podcasts turned into ongoing discussions in the comment section, if any of you listening have done research on ginkgo or know of good sources or find some good unique stacks with gingko, hop into the comment section. Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/sayer, S-A-Y-E-R, and let us know because I'd personally like to learn a lot more about this so-called immortality leaf that you talk about in the book.
Now, turning to the topic that I mentioned just a few moments ago, human photosynthesis, I find it absolutely intriguing. I just finished this big book written in very poor English, but it was very good. It was called the “Human Photosynthesis,” all about melanin and sunlight and free-electron production. And I would love you to describe in your own words exactly what human synthesis is or human photosynthesis is, how you kind of became aware of its existence, and what some things are that we can do to take advantage of our ability to produce energy in a very similar manner as plants.
Sayer: Yeah. I love Arturo Herrera's work on melanin and —
Ben: Yeah. He's the guy that wrote that book. Exactly, yeah. I'm glad you're familiar.
Sayer: Oh, it's amazing. I just read his article on how the painted turtle can live underwater, right, for four or five months in hibernation. How's it getting energy? How's it getting oxygen? Well, it's disassociating or dissociating the water molecule with melanin, basically. It's almost like photolysis, right, and photosynthesis. So, it helps us to better understand how we actually produce energy, mammals. So, when I first ran into this topic in 2014, there was an article on light-harvesting chlorophyll pigments enabling mammalian mitochondria to capture photonic energy and produce ATP. And that was the first time that I'd ever heard of such a thing, and I was amazed to find that in that article, they described how in the mice rats had swine, they fed chlorophyll-rich diet and they found that a metabolite of chlorophyll known as PBE was being taken into the mitochondria and it was basically making the Krebs cycle more efficient and increasing ATP production at least in order of magnitude.
And so, it was the first example that I've ever seen of research showing that mammals do use chlorophyll to harvest sunlight and turn it into metabolic energy. It was pretty profound. So, instead of us considering ourselves as just heterotrophs, which is obviously the Paleo movement I think is focused on that, is that we're actually photoheterotrophic. So, we're in between autotrophs, plants, and animals. So, we have, in the classical classification, so we have this ability to harness sunlight through chlorophyll. But in the study, if there was no chlorophyll in the diet and they expose those animals to sunlight, they actually age more rapidly. So, we need that chlorophyll if we're going to be out there in the sun.
Ben: Okay. So, it's beyond–obviously, melanin, based on this book by Arturo, melanin is capable–as a very large molecule, it's thousands and thousands of Daltons. It's a big one. It can actually take photons of sunlight and split a water molecule resulting in, from what I recall in the book, four electrons, which can then be shuttled into the electron transport chain and used to generate ATP. But it sounds to me like what you're saying is in addition to the natural melanin that we might have on our skin or in our retina that chlorophyll would actually not only enhance this process more, but also serve some type of a protective effect?
Sayer: Yes, exactly. Yeah. And same with Arturo's work too is he states that melanin can reform water as well, which is fascinating. He was even saying that it might constitute some original 01 code of forming and dissociating water, like it's almost informational. And melanin is able to take the whole electromagnetic spectrum in from radio waves to gamma rays. So, it's really fascinating and I feel like–what we're seeing basically in the new biology is that in conventional cellular bioenergetics, the fixation was on ATP, like this sort of billiard ball-like concept of what's going on at that level. And now, we're starting to understand that through water, thanks to Gerry Pollack's work, and now chlorophyll, melanin, we produce a ton of energy from harnessing it from our environment, ultimately, from the sun. And so, that's a pretty profound realization.
Ben: Yeah. It also makes you think twice about excess use of sunscreen. The other very interesting thing that was not in Arturo's book, and I think you briefly mentioned it in yours, and when I was looking for food sources of melanin, I came across this. It's something that I actually put into my coffee almost every morning and definitely put in my coffee every single morning when I travel, very rich source of what's called biomelanin, and that's chaga mushroom, which has that same dark melanin pigment. That's what makes chaga black. And it turns out that not only for a walk in the sunshine or for perhaps the use of–I don't know, say, or if you use any of these photobiomodulation panels like near and red infrared light panels or infrared saunas or anything like that, because it's really the infrared spectrum that a lot of these foods are interacting with.
But if you were going to go for a sunlight walk, or you were going to go visit an infrared sauna, or use one of these infrared light panels, some of the best things you could do would be to have foods in your body that are rich in chlorophyll, or even just like take a bunch of chlorella tablets, for example. That's a way to fast-track it, or put chaga in your morning cup of coffee, which is what I'm sipping at my desk as I'm doing my infrared therapy. I've got two packets of that Four Sigmatic chaga in my coffee. But then in addition to chaga and chlorophyll-rich foods, another one that I found actually interacts with photons of sunlight in a very similar manner is a blue pigment, and it's quite popular in the realm of nootropics right now, and that's methylene blue. Have you heard about that?
Sayer: You know, I have not. That's actually the first time I've heard of that. That's interesting.
Ben: Yeah. So, I'm into looking into all these different things that might enhance mitochondrial production of ATP, or in the case of methylene blue, upregulate the activity of cytochrome c oxidase in the mitochondria. And it turns out that methylene blue not only does that, but what accelerates that process is a little bit of nicotine. So, I actually have this little dropper bottle in my fanny pack that has about–it's got the equivalent of enough methylene blue to give you just the amount that you need because too much can cause excess free radical production. You don't want too much of that.
But basically, I've got about 50 milligrams of methylene blue in an entire 50 ml bottle of pure pharmaceutical-grade nicotine, and I'll do about two to three drops of that on the back of my tongue before I walk in the sunshine, and you can feel it just hit your brain almost immediate. It's amazing. Obviously, proceed at your own risk, folks, and make sure you only use pharmaceutical-grade options for any of this stuff. But it's pretty amazing how some of these compounds can interact with photons of sunlight or the light particles emitted by these infrared or near-infrared or red light panels.
Sayer: Absolutely. I mean, I think the biomelanin is really compelling because there was research in rats at least where they were using very lethal doses of radiation, and the groups getting biomelanin were surviving significantly more. I feel like in this day and age with non-native EMF coming at us from all directions, I think that this discovery that melanin may be able to not only protect us, but actually transform this type of EMF into usable energy is fascinating. Why not, right?
Ben: Are you talking about like non-native EMF that melanin might actually allow for conversion of that into free electrons?
Sayer: Yeah. Well, it's possible. I know that that's one of the things that gets me so excited about the discovery that melanin plays this role because it's able to take in the entire electromagnetic spectrum. There's even like naturally-occurring plutonium in a Himalayan sea salt. I found this out recently. First, I was devastated. I really thought, “Well, I was doing some good here for my body.” And then the more I started to study it, I started to realize that bacteria might just transform certain radioisotopes into less harmful ones. That was another sort of epiphany moment for me. Meaning, resilience is so profoundly wired into us, and through obviously the microbiome, it takes it to a whole another level as far as what we can resist and transform.
Ben: Super interesting. One of the things that you also have an entire chapter on in the book that I wanted to touch on with some of the time that we have left is cancer. You obviously delved into it in great detail, some natural cancer-fighting compounds and something I've discussed on the show before, kind of this new idea of cancer as a metabolic disease, not necessarily simply a problem of genetic mutation. But I'm just curious, after having written that chapter that I'm sure folks can go and read on their own, what would be a few of the key things that you would personally do right away if you found out that you had cancer?
Sayer: A good portion of my advocacy over the past decade has been focusing on helping people understand basic cancer physiology, looking at the role of cancer stem cells actually in the malignancy. Meaning, like the one in thousand cells, approximately one in ten thousand cells, depending on what source you look at is a stem cell that is capable of creating new tumors throughout the body. But the majority of the cells, the bulk of the tumor are not, and they don't present that level of risk. The key is in conventional treatment, they debulk tumors. They just want it to shrink, so they'll use radiation in chemotherapy, which are weapons-grade, basically.
And so, what they're doing is they're actually reducing the size of the tumor, but they're increasing and reaching the number of the stem cells. In fact, both chemo and radiation can revert differentiated pretty much mortal cells into immortal cancer cells. It's called stemness. It can increase stemness. So, ultimately, the very treatments while appearing to win the war, they actually are making the problem worse. So, that's number one. And then there's overdiagnosis of course. That's a big challenge because so many people were made to believe that ductal carcinoma in situ, DCIS, was cancer. And then in 2013, most people still don't know this, NIH commissioned expert panel on the subject of cancer diagnosis and they found that actually, it should be called benign or indolent lesion of epithelial origin. One point three million women had their breasts pretty much removed because of the false understanding.
So, we're only starting to really understand what cancer is, ultimately. But I believe, and this is one of the premise of “Regenerate” is that it's actually your body trying its best to regenerate and survive extremely adverse conditions, toxic and exposure, again non-native EMF, biologically incompatible foods, that's the basis for the cancer epidemic. So, if we change obviously the tumor microenvironment nutrigenomically, we look at that information context, we can actually make huge strides in reversing, I believe, many of these cancers.
Ben: Okay. So, that being said, from a practical standpoint, tell me a few things that you would do personally. And again, I'm asking you personally, you don't have to worry about this being misconstrued as medical advice. I'm just curious, like, are there any foods that you would eat, foods that you would avoid, supplements you would take, et cetera?
Sayer: Yes. So, for me, what I do is I focus on food as my medicine, so to speak, or that, which makes medicine unnecessary. It's amazing when you do this sort of like apple meditation, mono diet, and you really start to understand that it's infusing every cell of our body with waves of information, as well as providing these remarkable phyto compounds. You start to understand that everything we eat or don't eat is really crucial in determining whether we're going to end up with a chronic disease like cancer. So, to me, it's really more about the fundamentals. Again, it's grounding, it's hydration, it's good sunlight exposure, and it's the foods that we're eating, and looking at the quality. So, that means also the microbiome, if the soil quality from the food we're consuming is poor or doesn't have these ancient commensal strains, then we're not going to actually be able to reset our system. So, that whole Paleo deficit disorder concept.
So, we actually have to also look at regenerating the biosphere, remediating, regenerating for us to be able to truly regain our health. There's almost like an ethical imperative for us to do more of that as well. Now, consider ourselves sort of hermetically sealed off if we're in the [01:13:40] _____ and Whole Foods, and to start taking care of ourselves, we actually have a mandate to take care of the world in a better way so that we can also heal ourselves.
Ben: What's your diet look like on a daily basis?
Sayer: Well, interesting. I start off my day without eating. I usually do some physical practice. And then around the time that most people eat lunch, I'll do something sort of like a salad with some high quality, usually animal-derived protein, and just sort of like nibble my way through the day. I don't really set aside meals in the way that most people do. My relationship to food is more dynamic and I really–at this point, I actually just came off of a five-day “raw food cleanse”, but I was just enjoying eating sprouts, and peppers, and avocados, and just whatever I could that was just full of life, and I was so satisfied. I was pretty amazed by how not hungry I was.
Ben: So, you're utilizing something like compressed feeding windows or intermittent fasting?
Sayer: Yeah. I would probably would call it that exactly. One of the basic premises that I go by is when it gets dark, I should stop eating. And then I break the fast when I'm hungry the next day, but it's not according to some specific time window.
Ben: Okay. Got it. And then what would your staple meals look like?
Sayer: Staple meals, wow. I do try to get a smoothie throughout my daily window just because to me, it's a great way to get a lot of these “superfoods” in, as well as–I'm a big fan of things like berries and coconut milk and flax seed to just try to really nourish my body that way. But otherwise, I'm pretty flexible. Like I said, I do eat what one would probably call a Paleo type diet, but I also add in probably far more fruits and vegetables than others would.
Ben: Are you eating omnivorous diet or are you largely plant-based?
Sayer: I would say it's omnivorous.
Ben: Okay. Are you working any organ meats or anything like that?
Sayer: Actually, I haven't been doing organ meats, but Kelly, my wife, she's so good at this. There's a product which has all the organ meats all in it. It's like a capsule form. Not a huge fan of doing capsules, but I haven't been getting enough organ meat, so that's what I'm doing to compensate.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. I use a lot of capsules when I travel and then just go ape nuts on kidney and heart and liver, and all these big orders that I make from US Wellness Meats when I'm at home. I know we're coming up against time, but I don't think we really even scratched the surface. Perhaps I spent too much time talking about apples of everything that is in your book. I mean, it's absolutely fantastic. And in the end, you have like your reset-based diet and you discussed a lot in here that I purposefully did not get into on today's show, specifically this idea of black holes and energy production and the free energy that surrounds us in the universe. It was just too much to get into on the podcast, so I'll either do a follow-up on what you call the new biophysics of energy synthesis, or folks can grab the book and read that chapter in the book. I think it's the same chapter when you just talked about sunlight, but you get into other ways to generate free electricity, Chapter 3.
So, if you guys get the book, you must read Chapter 3 alone. I thought that was absolutely fascinating. It's probably my favorite chapter of the book. But I will link to the book, and I'll also link to GreenMedInfo and everything else that Sayer and I discussed if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/sayer. It's BenGreenfieldFitness.com/S-A-Y-E-R. Like I mentioned, anybody who's got some more information on ginkgo biloba, leave it there. I realized that some of you may jump in with some comments you have about plants and plant-defense mechanisms and your own take on that, and that's fine. I would love to hear your guys' thoughts after listening to Sayer, and also after exploring his website, GreenMedInfo.
So, Sayer, any last things you want to share with the audience while you've got a platform here, anything you would like to tell people, anything new you're working on, anything like that?
Sayer: Well, I thank you for mentioning that Chapter 3 because for me, it's sort of what's most exciting about the book. It was almost like Trojan-horsed in because there's this little shrimp known as the pistol shrimp, which I discussed, and it's a shrimp that's able to produce a water cavitation event that creates temperatures like you find on the surface of the sun. And this is to me one of the more exciting aspects of the new biology and the new physics that only a few people have been discussing. Jack Kruse is one of them, and he's the only other guy I could find that would really touch this topic, but it's exciting. I really feel like we're all on the precipice of this exciting new era of realizing our body is so much more resilient and so much more exciting and interesting than any of us have ever been told. I just hope that some of you get excited about the material as I still am, and it's just a developing process. I'm so grateful for you to have me on, Ben, and your work. I'm so really just impressed by everything you're doing. So, for me, it's just great to have this conversation and, yeah, I'm excited.
Ben: Yeah. Well, thank you for your work, and it's always my pleasure to be able to, hopefully, expose people to either websites or information or books or people that they might have previously been unaware of, and you're certainly one of those people who I would love for my listeners to follow. And I would love for you guys to check out GreenMedInfo, and also read this book. So, again, BenGreenfieldFitness.com/sayer. Sayer, thanks for coming on the show, man.
Sayer: Thanks. So, happy to be here.
Ben: Alright, folks. I'm Ben Greenfield with Sayer Ji signing out from BenGreenfieldFitness.com. Have an amazing week.
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.
I recently read the book Regenerate: Unlocking Your Body's Radical Resilience through the New Biology and have to admit that it was one of the most mind-blowing books I've read all year.
“Regenerate” elegantly incorporates concepts about food, supplements, recovery, biohacking, energy medicine, ancient wisdom, and many other concepts contained in other books I've read into one extremely well-written and thorough title.
Modern medicine and human health are at a critical crossroads, and the truth is that you (not your genes) are in the driver's seat. You are the one who gets to make informed decisions on how you use and nourish the evolutionary miracle that is your body.
Combining analysis of cutting-edge scientific findings with our deepest ancestral wisdom and health-promoting practices, Sayer Ji—author of Regenerate, founder of GreenMedInfo, and my guest on today's podcast—offers a time-tested program to help prevent and manage the most common health afflictions of our day: cancer, heart disease, neurodegenerative diseases, and metabolic syndrome. His “New Biology” concept explains why biological time is not a downward spiral and how chronic illness is not inevitable when you implement nature's resiliency tools, including information such as:
- The fascinating new science of food as information…
- The truth about cancer and heart disease screening and what real prevention looks like…
- How to reverse the most common forms of degeneration using food-based approaches…
- How the body extracts energy from sources other than food, including water and melanin…
- How to make sense of conflicting dietary recommendations and out-of-date food philosophies…
Encoded within every tissue of your body is your ability to regenerate. You'll learn in this episode how you can unlock your radical resiliency with a roadmap for diet, exercise, stress reduction, and the cultivation of the environment in which you choose to live.
Sayer Ji is the founder of GreenMedInfo, the world's most widely referenced evidence-based natural health resource. Founded in 2008, GreenMedInfo provides the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. He is also CEO and co-founder of Systome Biomed, vice chairman of the National Health Federation, steering committee member of the Global GMO Free Coalition (GGFC), a reviewer and editor at the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine.
During our discussion, you'll discover:
-The history of GreenMedInfo…8:00
- Personal interest in natural interventions; Sayer had health issues as a child
- People in his community were looking for the type of info he provides
- There's a need for validated, third party research
- Assign a numerical value to the quality of an article
-The role of exosomes in regeneration…14:06
- All cells in living beings secrete virus-like particles
- These carry genetic information; are inter-species communication tools
- Exosomes are carrying micro-RNA; can be consumed in our bodies via certain plants
- Angiosperms (plants) co-evolved with animal life; explains why some foods can transform one's health
- Foods that contain these exosomes:
-Whether these exosomes can be consumed via meat rather than plants…21:54
- Any living thing will produce the exosomes with powerful genetic information
- Plant defense mechanism is an argument against drinking cow milk
- Foods have varying degrees of defense mechanisms built in
- Lectins, specifically wheat lectins, are “invisible thorns”
- Can inhibit pancreatic cancer
- Generally speaking, it's inflammatory
- Chitin-binding lectins (what wheat lectin is)
- People take glucosamine to block the action of the lectins (N-acetylglucosamine)
-How genetic modification of plants alters the RNA or exosomes…26:30
- In 2017, the EPA discreetly approved Dow and Monsanto RNA interference GMO (RNAI corn)
- Small RNAs in grains that are being tinkered with by companies
- When we consume them, there is molecular homology with human genes
- Sayer predicts adverse effects on human health
- Monsanto's research shows an overlap in gene structures with human cells
- Hundreds could be silenced by consuming the GMO corn
-The problem with cow's milk…35:52
- Sayer had asthma as a child; went into remission with the removal of cow milk
- Bovine exosomes can carry some unwanted immunoregulatory cargo
- A2 milk, goat milk, camel milk, etc. is increasingly popular
- Changes in jaw structure, posture due to forced mouth breathing as a result of congestion from consuming cow milk
- Titanium dioxide is added to raw milk
- Gandhi: those who eat only plant material get sick; add a bit of milk
- A one-time investment (in goats for example) can pay off big returns for a long time
-Why chicken soup is the best medicine…42:05
- Tamiflu is extremely toxic; neuropsychiatric side effects
- Profound effects on biomarkers of immunity
- Bone broth is the new title of chicken soup
- Kettle and Fire bone broth (use code GREENFIELD for 10% off)
- Whole organic chicken
- Toss bones with water, ginger, herbs, spices in Crock Pot
- Epigenetic inheritance system
- Just the right amount of indispensable ingredients to our survival
-The link between apples and water…45:37
- BGF podcast with Gerald Pollack
- Structured water (H3O2) (use code BEN15 for 15% off)
- Apple pectin saved the lives of children in the wake of Chernobyl disaster
- Immortal cell is found in apples
- Polyphenols and genetic information that's vital to health
- 1 apple a day is equivalent to one statin drug
- Book: Peak Human by Joel Green (book title changed to The Immunity Code)
- Apples omit protein and fats we need; introduces cellular autophagy
- Concern about fructose; only proven in a hypercaloric state
- Very difficult to overeat apples
- If you understand true hunger, it resets your way of relating to food; access to a different type of energy
-Why Sayer is a fan of ginkgo biloba…55:33
- Ginkgo trees survived the bomb at Hiroshima
- GreenMed Info has much research on ginkgo biloba
- How to harvest and consume:
- Roger Drummer puts ginkgo in TianChi
-What human photosynthesis is and how we can take advantage of it…59:40
- Book: Human Photosynthesis by Arturo Herrera
- Book: Melanin, The Master Molecule by Arturo Herrera
- Article on painted turtles and melanin by Arturo Herrera
- Chlorophyll-rich diet
- Chlorophyll-rich diet fed to animals, increased ATP production
- We're “photoheterotrophic”: in-between autotrophic plants and animals
- Melanin can take photons of sunlight and split into four electrons; used to generate ATP
- Think twice before applying sunscreen
-Compounds that enhance melanin consumption…1:04:27
- Four Sigmatic Chaga
- Methylene Blue (use modestly and only pharmaceutical grade)
- Nicotine drops
- JOOVV panels
- Infrared sauna
- Melanin may transform non-native EMF into usable energy
- Naturally occurring plutonium in Himalayan salt
-What Sayer would do if he found out he had cancer…1:08:47
- Understand role of cancer stem cells
- 1 in 10k cells is a stem cell that's capable of creating new tumors in the body
- Conventional treatment is weapons-grade: reduces size, but increases number of tumorous stem cells
- Overdiagnosis is a problem
- 2013, NIH found that 1.3 million women had breast removed due to false understanding
- Toxicants and biologically incompatible foods are the root cause
- Focus on food as the medicine
- Pay attention to sourcing of food
- Regenerate the biosphere
-What Sayer's typical daily diet looks like…1:13:50
- Compressed feeding windows; intermittent fasting
- When it gets dark, stop eating
- Staple meals:
- One smoothie for superfoods, berries, coconut milk, etc.
- Paleo diet, add in more fruits and veggies than other paleo dieters
- Organ meat capsules
- U.S. Wellness Meats (use code GREENFIELD for 15% storewide – Offer good for up to 2 orders per customer)
-And much more…
Resources from this episode:
– Books and Articles:
- Regenerate: Unlocking Your Body's Radical Resilience through the New Biology
- The Human Photosynthesis by Arturo Herrera
- Melanin, The Master Molecule by Arturo Herrera
- Article on painted turtles and melanin by Arturo Herrera
- Peak Human by Joel Green
- Is All Water The Same?
- How To Treat Cancer With Chinese Medicine: What Happened When Chinese Herbologist Roger Drummer Got An “Incurable” Cancer.
– Kettle and Fire bone broth
– A2 milk
–Kion: My personal playground for new supplement formulations, Kion blends ancestral wisdom with modern science. Ben Greenfield Fitness listeners, receive a 20% discount off your entire order when you use discount code: BGF20.
–Organifi Gold: A new take on an ancient secret: Pain-soothing herbs, incredible antioxidants, and phytonutrients all in one delicious, soothing “Golden Milk” nighttime tea! Receive a 20% discount on your entire order when you use discount code: BENG20.
–Beekeeper's Naturals: A wellness company specializing in innovative nutraceuticals made from healing hive compounds and plant-based ingredients. Get 15% off your order when you use discount code: BEN
–Magic Spoon: A brand new company that has reimagined all your favorite childhood breakfast cereals. Low carb, keto-friendly, ZERO sugar, and tastes just like you remember. For free shipping on your order at Magic Spoon, use discount code: BENGREENFIELD