4 Things Your Saliva Can Tell You About Your Hormones.


If you want to know if you have a hormonal imbalance, test your hormones, or fix your hormones, you’ll definitely want to tune into this episode!

Let’s start here: I get tons of questions from listeners down under (that’s Australia for those of you who flunked geography) about where to get things like blood, gut and hormone testing done. So after a bunch of searching and talking to a some of my trusted Australian friends, I discovered Dr. Michael Smith from

Dr. Smith is a Naturopath and Kalish Method Functional Medicine Practitioner who specializes in hormonal disorders, adrenal, thyroid and digestive function. He works with clients from the chronically ill to athletes wanting to improve performance and does consultations face-to-face in Australia, and also via Skype or phone.

During our discussion, you’ll find out:

-What exactly a Kalish practitioner…

-The 4 different hormone imbalances in seemingly healthy people…

-Why having normal progesterone could not be enough if your cortisol is also high…

-Why you don’t have to be the stereotypical “fat” woman to have estrogen excess…

-How low estrogen can be just as big a problem as high estrogen, and what type of soy products you should be eating for low estrogen…

-Why you can have normal hormone levels for most hormones, but low DHEA…

-When high testosterone can be an problem…

Resources Michael and I discuss in this episode:

-Michael’s website – mention this podcast episode and you get $50 off a “Hormone Package”, which includes a one hour consult, an adrenal test and saliva sex hormone test.

-Progesterone drops for increasing progesterone.

-Mountain Rose Herbs – (look for Vitex or Chastetree for increasing progesterone).

-Calcium d-glucarate for estrogen excess.

-Curcumin, transdermal magnesium and adaptogenic herbs like TianChi.

-Peony, licorice and inositol for high testosterone.

Do you have questions, comments or feedback about salivary hormone testing or the 4 hormonal balances that we discussed? Leave your thoughts below!

#310: The Menstrual Cycle And Athletic Performance, How To Get Kids To Grow Taller, Fueling For Soccer Matches & More!


Feb 25, 2015 Podcast: How To Get Kids To Grow As Tall As Possible, How To Handle House Guests Who Don’t Eat Healthy, Can Ketosis Cause Dental Plaque, and 5 Ways To Naturally Fuel For A Soccer Match.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, call 1-877-209-9439, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form… but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


News Flashes:

You can receive these News Flashes (and more) every single day, if you follow Ben on, and Google+.


A donate button that reads - keep the podcasts comingSpecial Announcements:

March 3, Tuesday, 7pm Pacific/10pm Eastern: This month’s Inner Circle workshop is our quarterly “Winter 2015 What’s Working Now Show”, in which you get to join Ben and Jessa as they talk about the latest workouts, fitness gear, nutrition supplements, recipes, anti-aging strategies, biohacks, healthy kid tips, and more – along with your questions and answers!

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 13-16, 2015: Ben is speaking at New Media Expo, where the world’s top bloggers, podcasters and content creators teach you how to make money by creating content online, and how to enhance your blog, your podcast, your videos and any other media you create online. Better yet, you can come and attend the conference, then join Ben at Spartan Vegas on April 17! Click here to register for New Media Expo and use code “bgreenfield20″ to get 20% off the current pricing.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben and Jessa speak at PaleoFX 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more (including Jessa’s “Whipped Up Homemade Heavy Body and Face Lotion.” and Ben’s potentially offensive Pecha Kucha presentation).

May 1-3, 2015: Ben is speaking at Ari Meisel’s Less Doing Conference, the year’s top conference for learning about things like how to manage your email inbox, hack productivity, enhance your cognitive performance, learn how to use the latest and greatest phone apps and productivity software, free up as much time as possible, and much more! Click here to get more details and to book a free productivity call with Ari.

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

And of course, this week’s top iTunes review – gets some BG Fitness swag straight from Ben – leave your review for a chance to win somescreenshot_1064


Listener Q&A:

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

How To Get Kids To Grow As Tall As Possible

Tony says: He is wondering if you know of any tips, nutrition advice or biohacks that can help his 14-year-old son reach his full height potential. He has become quite the athlete and wants to play football in high school.

How To Handle House Guests Who Don’t Eat Healthy

Carrie says: She wants to know how you and Jessa handle having house guests who don’t share the same dietary concerns and habits as you. She is finding it harder and harder to cook for other people. She gets tired of telling house guests to bring things like juice, bread, a toaster and that sort of stuff when they come to visit.

In my response, I recommend:
-The book Never Eat Alone
-The book Mastermind Dinners

Can Ketosis Cause Dental Plaque?

Will says: He likes to keep himself in mild ketosis because it helps with his ADHD and other things but he has noticed that he is getting a lot more dental plaque. Is that related to ketosis or is he imagining things?

In my response, I recommend:

5 Ways To Naturally Fuel For A Soccer Match

Julian says: He is wondering how you would fuel for a soccer match. Any supplements or gels? UCAN? The game has 2 x 45min halves and a 20 minute  half time. He knows you talk a lot about triathlon fueling but what about field sports? Football or even basketball?

In my response, I recommend:
-Frequent glycolytic surges combined with rapid fueling…
-Chia seeds + honey + sea salt in water bottle (prefer coconut water).
-Natural Force Raw Tea before, Iskiate Endurance during and Recovery after. “BEN10” will get you 10% off all supplements there.
-UCAN + MCT oil + amino acids + electrolytes as described in this post.
-Fat based energy gels at 1-2/hour.
-“Acceptable” energy bar (e.g. Onnit Hemp Force, BonkBreaker, Hammer – 15% discount code 80244 at, Epic Bar, Pemmican, etc.).


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


Ask Your Question

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The Hidden Truth Behind Toxins, Detoxification & Detox Diets.


Dr. Tim Jackson – a medical ninja when it comes to nutritional biochemistry, digestive health, methylation and genetic testing and functional endocrinology – is no stranger to

He penned the article that first appeared here entitled “Blame the Bugs: How Stealth Pathogens Are Making You Fat, Tired, and Brain Dead.“, and also “Broken Gut to Big Butt: How A Busted Digestive System Can Make You Hormonally Fat.

And now Dr. Tim is back with a vengeance. Just when I thought I knew everything there was to know about detoxification and detox diets, Tim began dropping knowledge bombs like xenobiotics, depuration, miasm, emunctory, and even drainage (yuk!). I had to get him on the podcast to open your eyes about what’s really happening inside your body when you detox…or when you don’t.

So when it comes to detox, what you’re about to hear is like no other podcast I’ve ever done on the topic, so strap on your earphones and prepare to learn:

-Why the pH of your blood is just ONE part of proper acid/alkaline balance…

-Why detoxification can destroy you if you don’t do a few other important things first…

-The three different ways to truly test your body and see if you even need to detox…

-Which organs detox your body (it’s not just your liver and kidney!)…

-Where homeopathic medicine fits in…

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

-Dr. Tim’s Website

-Dr. Tim’s Professional Facebook Page


-Asyra Testing

-EAV Screening

-Autonomic Response Testing

-Seroyal’s “UNDA” homeopathic remedies and supplements

-Seroyal’s Dr. Dixon Thom

Do you have questions, comments or feedback for Tim or me? Leave your thoughts below.

Episode #309 – Full Transcript

Podcast #309 from


Introduction:           In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Can A Low Heart Rate Be Unhealthy, Does A Training Mask Make You Slower, What Is Chaga, The Best Ways To Build Balance, What Is The Best Kind Of Cinnamon, and much more.

Welcome to the podcast.  We provide you with everything you need to know for total performance, fat loss, recovery, digestion, sleep, brain, and hormone optimization.  So whether you’re an Ironman triathlete, or you just wanna shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from

Ben:                   Brock, I’m feelin’ a little bit violent lately.

Brock:               Oh no!  That’s not what I’m expecting you to say.  (chuckles)  Yes, try to be scared?

Ben:                   I’ve been killin’ fat cells right and left.

Brock:               Ahhh!  I see.

Ben:                   You know that I was actually talking with Toni on the Endurance Planet podcast about this yesterday.  About how we’re pretty much kinda stuck with these many fat cells as we have going out of childhood later on in life.  You never really get rid of fat cells, right, they just lose some of their energy content, some of their fatty acid content but they…

Brock:               They’re just like deflated balloons.

Ben:                   Yeah, basically, but they never actually die or disappear unless… drumroll please (drumroll sound) they figure out a way to get what’s called cellular apoptosis or cell death, or conversion of those fat cells into something else like for example…

Brock:               Have you actually been taking leptin injections?

Ben:                   No!  That’s from…

Brock:               Aren’t those like half a million dollars?

Ben:                   I’m not sure.  I…

Brock:               I think so.  I think the leptin therapy is like a half million dollars a year.

Ben:                   I’ll have to go price that on my local friendly leptin therapist.

Brock:               Yeah, exactly.

Ben:                   But actually, and you are right.  Leptin would be one good way to kill off fat cells but the other way you can do it is this cold and that you get conversion of your fat cells into brown adipose tissue when you get cold, and the other thing that happens is you decrease inflammation which puts your body in the state where if you have an energy deficit, fat cells are also more likely to die.  So if like a – you’re concerned about your fat cells just always hanging around because I know our entire body of listeners are extremely fat-phobic.

Brock:               Everybody… Oh!  I thought you’re gonna say they’re obese.  (laughing)

Ben:                   Oh, I hope not.  At this point, in our podcasting series we should have at least helped a few people lose weight.

Brock:               I hope so.

Ben:                   But anyways, yeah, feeling violent.  I did about a 60 minute 60 degree cold water immersion this morning.  That was my main workout for the day.  I don’t’ wanna give listeners the impression that that’s like how I start my day and then work.  Like if I do something that intense, that’s pretty much it for the day.  So, I might play a little tennis tonight and that will be about it.

Brock:               Yeah, you’re not Joe De Sena or anything.

Ben:                   And then the other thing is I went snowboarding in Utah over the weekend and it was so nice that I actually snowboarded in my shorts and not much else.  So I posted a photo of that.  I don’t know if people know that we actually have an Instagram page for the show.  But if you go to Instagram, which is – for those of you who are not plugged-in to the internet and social media to way – I don’t really know where it is.  It’s like you put photos up there and people like them.

Brock:               I think it’s for taking pictures of your lunch.

Ben:                   Yeah, that too.  So if you go to, you can see me killing fat cells, snowboarding half naked.  So, enjoy!

News Flashes:

Brock:               Well, you’ve been killing fat cells and rippin’ up the slopes.  You’ve also been tweeting crazy news flashy type things over at

 Ben:                   That’s right and we’re all fans of bacteria so I figured why not kick things off, we’re talkin’ about two recent articles that came out in relation to the gut, and the microbiome.

Brock:               Uhmm, I love the microbiome.

Ben:                   Uhmm, I like it just ‘cause sayin’ it makes me sounds smart.  Microbiome – it’s like you could say, your gut or you could say your GI tract, or you could say bacteria but saying microbiome makes you sound like a scientist in a lab coat so.  That’s all…

Brock:               And we all wanna sound like that at all times ‘cause that’s how you’ll get chicks.

Ben:                   That’s right, that’s how you’ll drive Lamborghinis and get chicks so you’ve got to avoid lab coat.


                           So anyways, there was an interesting commentary called Can Your Gut Make You Faster?  And this appeared over at Sweat Science and the idea was that, there was this study in the Journal and Strength Conditioning Research that showed that when you look at mice and you specifically look at mice who have good amounts of gut bacteria, they have a longer what’s called time to exhaustion in this case, what’s called a time to exhaustion swimming test which sounds horrible by the way.

Brock:               Poor little mice!  They’re not supposed to swim.

Ben:                   Just swim until you sink and let’s see what happens.  Anyways though, the mice that did not have adequate amounts of gut bacteria and they’re basically germ-free mice, and that’s not a good thing in this case.  They had the lowest time to exhaustion so the mice with the weakest gut microbiome had the lowest time to exhaustion.  Another way you could look at this is – the mice that had the lowest diversity of gut bacteria, alright?  So, what the Sweat Science article goes on to point out is that for example, one of the benefits of having adequate amounts of gut bacteria or even oral bacteria which is pretty reflective of your gut bacteria is that bacteria can do things like convert nitrate into nitrite.  And that’s where you produce nitric oxide which is a great cardiovascular performance aid and causes things like vasodilation, right, it’s like Viagra for your muscle.  That’s the way I’d like to describe it.

Brock:               It’s like rocket fuel.

Ben:                   Well, I like Viagra for your muscles better than rocket fuel.  It’s even better.

Brock:               It’s kinda dirty.

Ben:                   Yeah, ‘cause it’s kinda dirty exactly, Snicker.  Anyways though, the idea is that if you have poor gut bacteria, you may actually not be producing as much nitric oxide as somebody next to you might be like eating fermented foods, or using probiotics or not using antibiotics or being careful with antibacterial hand soap, or – and this lead me to my  actual tweet which was – is your mouthwash making you a slow runner because mouthwash actually kills your gut bacteria, meaning that you wouldn’t get nitrate to nitrite conversion, meaning you would theoretically have lower levels of nitric oxide and sure enough they’ve done experiments that shows that mouthwash kills off the nitrate load.  So…

Brock:               It kills off your gut bacteria or mouth bacteria?

Ben:                   No, it kills off your mouth bacteria causing the same kind of issues.

Brock:               Okay, I thought you meant gut bacteria like don’t swallow it.

Ben:                   Yeah, I guess if you swallowed it.  We all like a little bit of a mouthwash cocktail every now and again.  Nice, minty flavor.  Anyways though, the idea here is that mouthwash may not be that great an idea if you’re an athlete.  Interesting, ha!

Brock:               I think it’s not actually a good idea if you’re a human.

Ben:                   Uhmm. Yeah, that too, that too but this article in particular was related to speed and specifically time to exhaustion.  So if you’ve get thrown in a pool, and you wanna last longer than your friend or your neighbor or whoever else you’re competing against to see who dies first treading water, don’t – don’t do the mouthwash beforehand.  Go in there with stinky breath and you will survive longer.  So, speaking of the gut microbiome, there was another study – well, this wasn’t a study, it was…

Brock:               An anecdote.

Ben:                   … a report on a fecal microbiota transplant.  We’ve talked about this on the show.  These are basically the poop pills that you’d normally take for something like clostridium difficile which is an infection that particularly affects your colon and your large intestine.  It is related to a lack of good bacteria – this time not in your mouth, but in your colon.  And the idea here is that by replacing your fecal bacteria with donors, you can more or less push the reboot button in your large intestine.  And there are people all over the world now doing fecal microbiota transplants.  Kids everywhere are asking their parents for poop pills, fecal transplants.

Brock:               That’s what I got for Christmas!

Ben:                   It’s taking the world by storm.

Brock:               Mommy, please!

Ben:                   I’m actually talking right now to Jeff Leach, the guy who wants to live with the – it was like the Hadza tribe somewhere in, I believe, Africa and actually harvested poop from like an ancient warrior to inject that ancient warriors, you know, the – Hadza tribe guy’s poop into his backside thus replacing his own gut bacteria with that of a supposedly superior human being just to see what happen.


So – however in the case of this article, it was kind of the reverse.  This woman became obese after she got a fecal transplant from a donor who is overweight.  In this case I believe the donor was her daughter, yeah.  And so, this woman ballooned up and within two years after the transplant, gained 34 pounds and she described it as some kind of a switch happening inside her body that all of a sudden she felt as though she had no control over her weight.  So, it’s really interesting.  I’ll put a link, you know, as with anything over at, we’re trying to take really thorough show notes for you guys.  But if you wanna read about this and how the poop pill could potentially backfire and why if you are seriously considering asking for Christmas for a fecal microbiota transplant,   why – you might wanna choose your donor wisely and don’t like pick a – say like a homeless person with some kind of venereal disease or maybe like an obese person, or you know, pretty much go for the cleanest, most superior person on the face of the planet that you can get, if you’re gonna inject their poop into you.

Brock:               I’m trying to think who I would choose.  Who would you choose?

Ben:                   I’d probably go for like, maybe like “the Rock” you know, the…

Brock:               Uhmm, good call.

Ben:                   He’s a pretty good specimen.  I would probably write him a letter and ask him for some of his poop and see if he would be able to oblige.

Brock:               I was thinking Mo Farah.  Maybe it’ll make me super fast over a hundred meter.

Ben:                   Yeah, exactly.  I wonder if that’s true.  If you could just choose the super human power that you wanted and then approach that person and ask for their poop.

Brock:               We’ve figured it out how you steal super powers.

Ben:                   How to become beautiful, all handsome, strong, and fast all in one fell swoop.  It all starts with…

Brock:               …everybody’s poop.

Ben:                   ….your butt.  So, I guess while we’re on the topic of getting fat, there was also another article in The Atlantic about whether Costco is making us fat.  I know we’re talking about fat a lot but this was actually really, really interesting.  Professor of Economics at Georgia State University analyzed a number of theories about what’s actually driving the obesity epidemic, you know, whether it’s desserts, whether it’s desk jobs, whether it’s the declining smokin’ since tobacco suppresses appetite, and they looked at literally 27 different things.  Everything from like working hours to exercise trends, to gas prices when it comes to things that could potentially be contributing to obesity.  And what they found in the long run was that they were only two factors of the 27 they studied that were actually statistically significant drivers of obesity.  The first was the proliferation of restaurants, and that’s not a huge surprise if you think about it.

Brock:               That makes sense.

Ben:                   The second was the rise of warehouse food clubs like Costco or I know it’s also known as Sam’s Club in some states.  And well, regular grocery stores and access to regular supermarkets actually had a negative effect on obesity rates which I think makes sense because if you can go choose whatever healthy foods that you want rather than having to like be in a grocery store oasis say downtown Las Vegas where you all have access to restaurants.  It would become likely that you might lose weight by being able to have access to more healthy food but once you’ve get access to food in very, very large amounts at very, very cheap prices, it could become a driver for obesity and that’s basically what the conclusion of this study was was that the ad libitum access to high amounts of cheap food in large package containers could cause obesity.  And I would actually take that one step further and I would say that when you have like let’s say a small bag of almonds in your pantry, you know, even if you’re looking for healthy food, you’re likely to eat smaller portions of those almonds when you decide you’re gonna eat almonds vs. when you have the giant dog food bag size, you know, like burlap sack of almonds in the corner of your pantry that’s like this a) never ending supply of almonds and b) that driving thought at the back of your mind that you got to eat them all before they go bad, and you know, I remember when my family used to shop at Costco like we would go home with these carts of huge boxes of food and they were just be like almost like this pressure to eat it all, you know.  So I think it’s maybe even more than just access to cheap high amounts of calories, it’s the fact that you just got bigger boxes of stuff in your pantry.


It’s like…

Brock:               Yeah, and then you also pay a membership fee to go to those kind of places too, so there’s also the pressure to purchase more to make your membership well.

Ben:                   Right!  Right, exactly.  So, just realized that like if you’re listening in  and you shop at one of these supercenters like Costco for example, understand the psychology of eating and the fact that when you have larger amounts of food present, you’re gonna have this internal subconscious pressure to eat it and it’s not your fault, it’s just evolution.  So, the last thing – the final thing I wanted to mention and I just thought this was interesting because I myself have had high blood cortisol levels.  That’s something I’ve had to deal with as well as problems in the past with drops in testosterone usually related to hard and heavy training.  This was a study that came out in Science and Sports this month and I looked at the effects of short term creatine supplementation on salivary hormones – testosterone and cortisol.  And what they found was that after about 7 days of creatine loading, they saw an increase in testosterone concentrations and a decrease in cortisols concentrations.  And when you combine this with the fact that creatine has been proven in tons of studies – it’s the most studied supplement on the face of the planet for the past decade.  It’s been shown to be beneficial for everything from power and strength, to acting as a nootropic for increasing mental performance, and cognitive performance to now it’s been shown to increase testosterone and decrease cortisol.  It really is a pretty powerful molecule.  And obviously if you’re eating a lot of animal meat, you’re getting a lot of the cortisol that’s already concentrated in that meat, but if you’re vegan or vegetarian, I definitely think you should be in creatine and if you’re looking for just like kinda like a better living through science ergogenic aid, I recommend you do as I do.  I take 5 grams of creatine every morning.  It’s just kind of like a – you know, kinda like when I get up and I may get big glass of water and that’s exactly when I take it, I just pop 5 grams of creatine when I have my big morning glass of water and it’s easy.  So…

Brock:               I took 4 grams this morning for the nootropic side effects of it ‘cause I knew we had a show and I wanted to sound smart.

Ben:                   Yeah, so if you hear Brock pronouncing polysyllabic words during today’s episode then that means that he did indeed have his 4 grams of cortisol, oh not cortisol but creatine.  So creatine, stuff I take is called CreO2, what do you take, Brock?

Brock:               I’m taking the BioCreatine from Natural Stacks.

Ben:                   Uhm, I love how nobody can sell this creatine.  It has to be like CreO2 or BioCreatine ‘cause creatine just plain old creatine is boring.

Brock:               That’s lame.

Ben:                   You gotta sex it up.  So anyways, we do have a 50% discount for creatine.  I’m not gonna give it to you though, you gotta go to the show notes to grab it.  So if you wanna get some discounts on creatine, ha-ha, it’s the same stuff that I take but it’s over on the show notes –  The one that I take is like a tablet, it’s about 1 and a half grams or so a tablet, so I just pop 3 and… that’s it!

Special Announcements:

Ben:                   (lullaby music playing)  Well Brock, this podcast is actually brought to you by a mattress company.

Brock:               (yawning)

Ben:                   Yeah, sleepy time.  Casper Mattresses.  So, Casper Mattresses are one of those guilt-free mattresses that have a handsome cover that compliments just about any bedroom.  They use a synthetic latex that’s made in Eco-friendly continuous pore facility.  Whatever the hell a continuous pore facility is.  But they’re made in the USA, in Pennsylvania and the fact that they use this type of latex means they eliminate any of the risks associated with latex sensitivity.  So, if you’re sensitive to say, condoms then you’ll still be able to handle it – Casper Mattress just fine.  And all of their foams have environmental certifications that ensure they’re healthy to be around.  Anyways, turn that music off.  That’s annoying, okay.  Seriously though, I actually have a Casper Mattress, it’s a hybrid mattress, it’s got premium latex foam combined with memory foam.  They are pretty comfy, and the thing is – they’re like a – they’re very cheap, it’s the best way I can describe it.  I think it’s like – I mean relatively cheap like a…

Brock:               Inexpensive.

Ben:                   Yeah, inexpensive would probably be a better, friendlier way to describe it.  But they’re like around 500 for a twin size mattress, I think it goes up to 950 for a king size but considering that other comparable mattresses, you’re paying $6,000, $8,000 for I mean like – mattresses can be really expensive.


                           They’re actually really good deal, and they are high quality mattress and I do actually have one of these in one of the rooms upstairs in my house.  And it is – as they say an obsessively engineered mattress at a shockingly fair price.  So if you’re looking for the right sink and the right bounce in your mattress, so check them out, and I think the place where you go to save $50 is or you could use the promo code Ben over on the Casper website but $50 off on a mattress purchase.  Not bad.

Brock:               Not bad.

Ben:                   So, there you go.  And then another few things, first of all – coming up soon: March 3rd, March 3rd about every quarter inside the Inner Circle, my wife and I do basically a random show.  So we call it our What’s Working Now Show but we talked about a lot about the fitness gear, the supplement recipes, anti-aging strategies, biohacks, like all the stuff that we frankly – you know, like you and I don’t have time to go over on this podcast, Brock or kinda like the extras, or a lot of times the weird stuff, yes, believe it or not, there is more weird stuff than just poop pills, and overdosing on creatine that we get into these episodes and they’re a lot of fun.  We video record them and they are all live, so people can come and just like join us, and chat during those inner circle workshops.  So the next one is March 3rd, it’s comin’ up so I’d mentioned it for those of you who are inner circle members or if you’re not an inner circle member, you can go to  Fun way to kinda join the internal forum where me and Jessa, and Brock’s in there too and we talk with folks and we’ve got the podcast going in there, we have extra workshop videos, stuff like that.  So, it’s a fun way to kind of have a little bit of access to me without paying exorbitant coaching prices or something like that.  So, there you go.  And then also, another few things.  First of all, I’m speaking at the New Media Expo and the New Media Expo is a really cool place to go.  If you blog, if you podcast, if you are wanting to have an online business, this is a really, really cool conference to go to, and better yet as we’ve mentioned on a few podcasts before, it culminates with the Spartan Race in Vegas.  So you can go and hang out at the conference, eat your face off at the buffets everywhere, drink copious amounts of alcohol where you socialize with all the other new media expo folks and you got to remember what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.  So, you know how crazy podcasters and bloggers can get…

Brock:               Wheew!

Ben:                   Talking about WordPress and microphones, and then…

Brock:               What’s your – what are you gonna tell the people?  What’s the biggest tip you had…

Ben:                   Actually, what I’m talking about is just what I do, like how I do the podcast, and they wanted me to talk about where I got my start, and how podcasting comes in for me, what kind of equipment I use, and then also how I interact with the people who listen in, and how I use things like social media and basically they just wanna hear what Ben Greenfield does when it comes to building, you know, global fitness phenomenon, more or less, so.

Brock:               So you just go out on stage and basically say, “Every video you shoot, don’t wear a shirt.”

Ben:                   Don’t wear a shirt.

Brock:               Boom!

Ben:                   That’s right.  So, New Media Expo – go to and you can get 20% off, that code is too hard to remember.  “bgreenfield20” Let’s face it, you’re not gonna remember that.  So, just go to the show notes for this episode  Grab the discount code, you’d be good to go.

                           Another copule of things.  Last two things actually.  The first is: Paleo FX is comin’ up.  If you haven’t yet registered, remember you don’t have to be paleo.  You can bring in contraband like baguettes and yogurt, and still be accepted and loved at the Paleo FX with open arms except from the people wearing bacon t-shirts – who – may, I don’t know, punch you in the face if they see you.

Brock:               I was gonna say, I think there’s some punching that might happen.

Ben:                   Yeah, that’s true.

Brock:               If you’re walking around with the bagels, someone’s gonna punch you.

Ben:                   Yeah.  Just be careful.  Like for example, if you bring bread, keep it in your purse or in your whole foods bag, and you should be fine.  So anyways, Paleo FX.  I’m not paleo but I’m gonna be there.


                           I’m speaking there, and the link to register for it is over in the show notes.  You may have heard me interview the guy who actually organized the whole thing and last Saturday’s podcast episode called Why Strong People Are Hard To Kill and Keith Norris was the guy interviewed in that episode.  And yeah!  He’s a great guy, so are the rest of the folks, most of them at least, but Brock and I will be there keepin’ things real, drinking our milk, eating our bread, so check out Paleo…

Brock:               I have a pocketful of oats the whole time.

Ben:                   That’s sounds dirty., that’s paleo, the letter f, the letter x, 15 and you can register for Paleo FX 2015.  And then the last thing is, if you are wanting to become a productivity ninja like you know how to manage your email inbox, hack productivity, enhance your cognitive performance, and learn how to use the latest and greatest phone apps, and productivity software like if you wanna use apps like, I don’t know, remember the milk or… what’s another one?

Brock:               They still make that app?  Man!  I was using that app like back in 2003.

Ben:                   Yeah.  I think they so still make that app.  Anyways though, Ari Meisel, my buddy Ari Meisel, really, really good guy when it comes to like knowing about how to use pretty much everything on the face of the planet.  I don’t know how he knows all these stuff to increase productivity.  I think he just spends his entire life in the iTunes app store, but check it out at, – that is a conference in New York, May 1st through the 3rd, May 1st through the 3rd.  It’s gonna be worth comin’ to.  So, check that out and, yeah! That’s it!

Voiceover:        Finally, a solution for healthy living that actually makes sense.  Ben Greenfield and his wife Jessa have cracked the code on healthy living, and reveal their entire system inside the Ben Greenfield fitness Inner Circle where you get instant access to 24/7 forum interaction with Ben and Jessa.  A live monthly webinar, meal plans, videos, Ben’s body transformation club archives, and much, much more.  If you or your family wanna learn how to achieve the ultimate healthy lifestyle on a budget, then the Ben Greenfield fitness inner circle is for you.  Get 4-free videos to get you started, and full access to the inner circle at  That’s  We’ll see you inside!

Listener Q & A:

Ben:                   Hey Ben!  I love the podcast!  Quick question:  My heart rate, the resting heart rate, I woke up yesterday and it was at 38.  I skateboard, I am a personal trainer, I teach aerobics classes, a lot of high intensity interval training, I do spin classes, I instruct spin classes, so I’m pretty active.  I know having a low resting heart rate is good but it seems like lately the more rest days I’ve taken, the lower it gets.  So I don’t know if resting and that’s helping me get in better shape because I’m not over training.  I was kinda worried about that, I know you said you had a 42, 43 resting heart rate on some of your labs so if you could just answer that that would be cool.  Thanks!

Brock:               The only time I made into the 30s was when I had pericarditis.  (laughter)  I’m usually in the 40s.

Ben:                   That’s the way to do it.  Get a life-threatening inflammatory heart disease and you too can have a low heart rate.

Brock:               Or you can just be Ben!

Ben:                   That’s right.  So, yeah low heart rate.  Well, normally, a low heart rate in an athlete is indicative that they have an increased in blood volume and the ability to have a larger cardiac output for every beat of the heart.  Essentially meaning that your heart becomes more efficient, you’ve got more blood going around and so you for every minute have to pump fewer times with each heart beat in order to deliver blood to the rest of your body.  And when you think about it, that can actually have even a little bit of an anti-aging effect because your heart is kinda like a battery.  You’ve got x amount of beats in it over the course of a lifetime.  So if you’re constantly living at say like a heart rate of 60 or 65, you know, a lot of people are around 70, it’s crazy.  They’re going through a lot of heartbeats than you even if you’re an athlete, even if you have like an hour or an hour and a half a day where your heart rate is above a hundred, and maybe even like up a 150 or 180,


that balances out if it means that the rest of the day, like the other 22 or 22 ½ hours or whatever, your heart rate is at 40, you know, or 38 in the case of Ben, there’s a little bit of a life extending effect there too.  So, in most cases, is that low heart rate is not a bad thing, you know, in a non-athlete sometimes that would be associated with what’s called bradycardia, which can indicate that you have some electro or electrical abnormalities in terms of heart rhythm.  But in an athlete, you know, heart rate of 35, 40, 45, kinda in that range, that’s really, really common especially in endurance athletes.  And interestingly, they have been able to reverse runner’s bradycardia with training over stress.  There’s this really interesting article in the Journal of Sports Medicine where they basically took some runners who had this really low heart rate, and they put them into a state of overtraining, like short-term overtraining with a significant increase in intensity and they reverse their bradycardia.  And that’s a lot of times what you’ll see is, you know, if your heart rate all of a sudden starts to increase by more than about 5 beats consistently every morning, that’s a pretty good sign that you’re driving yourself with too much intensity and you’re getting out of that running induced bradycardia.  So that’s one way to identify overtraining – is if your heart rate all of a sudden gets higher.  But the flipside is true too.  Sometimes that low heart rate is actually not a good thing.  And to understand why, you need to understand the stages of overtraining.  So, there’s a lot of different ways that you can quantify overtraining, but typically what happens is first you get over reached and sometimes that’s called stage one overtraining.  And when you’re over reached a lot of times it’s a good thing, like many athletes and many coaches will purposefully over reached an athlete to beat them up a little bit, get them into a slightly tired state and then give them recovery day so that they super compensate and get stronger.  And if you’re not careful in that first stage of overtraining and you’re training tired, you are a higher risk for injuries, you’re at a higher risk for hormonal imbalances, like really, really high cortisol, sometimes it can get tough to sleep, sometimes you feel mentally stressed, emotionally stressed, a lot of times you get a little bit of sexual dysfunction, impotence just because you’ve used so much energy for exercise, sometimes in women you start to see amenorrhea becoming an issue, but that’s one of those deals where if you rest after you dug yourself into that slight hole, you bounce back even stronger.  Now, what happens typically in the next stage is sympathetic overtraining where your sympathetic nervous system becomes overactive and that culminates a lot of times with restlessness and over excitability and that rise in the morning heart rate.  You know, that rise of 3, 4, 5, beats in the morning heart rate, and this is typically synonymous or it happens simultaneously with high cortisol levels, high insulin levels, high glucose levels, and basically that very, very kinda wired type of approach.  So, it’s a little bit of a move from feeling a little bit beat up to really feeling overtrained, and having an excess of simulation of the sympathetic nervous system.  And that’s when you see the morning resting heart rate be a little bit high.  But then what can happen and a lot of people will think this is a sign of fitness, right, they’ll think that – hey, my blood volume is going up, my heart must be becoming more efficient, my cardiac output is improving because heart rate can drop at that point.  What happens is the sympathetic nervous system becomes exhausted and a lot of times you see a drop in cortisol, you see a lack of desire to compete, a lack of desire to train, a lot of exhaustion, typically there’s an injury that manifests right around the same time.  Sometimes multiple injuries, pains in the joints, and you’ll see a low resting heart rate, and an inability to even reach a high heart rate during training.  And that low resting heart rate is not a sign of an improvement in fitness but it’s a sign that you are getting into the latter stages of overtraining ‘cause first you get over reached then your sympathetic – your flight or fight nervous system gets over stimulated and then you get into that stage of para-sympathetic nervous system exhaustion, and that drop – that significant drop in the morning heart rate.  And so, usually that low morning heart rate, if it’s a state of para-sympathetic overtraining is accompanied by just feelin’ like crap, like no motivation to train, and typically how propensity for injury, it’s low cortisol, it’s not high cortisol ‘cause your adrenal glands are just like pooped out – to use the highly scientific term.  And so, yeah!  There are cases where a low morning heart rate is not a good thing but usually you’ll know. Like you know, for example if you’re testing your heart rate variability which I’ve recommended before, shameless plug here, download the Nature Beat app if you have an iPhone.  You go to, that’s’ the one that I use for heart rate variability measurements and if you’ve got a very low heart rate variability, and a low morning heart rate, that’s pretty much a sign that your parasympathetic nervous system has been overtrained.  I’m talking about like a heart rate variability that’s consistently like in the 60s and the 70s, like that’s what you’re gonna see when you’re in a state of overtraining.  If you’re just a little bit stressed out from work the day before, you know, it’s gonna be 70s, the 80s but ultimately, yeah, that form of a low heart rate can be a bad thing but not necessarily unless it’s accompanied by their symptoms otherwise it’s a sign of really good fitness.

Jeff:                   Hey Ben!  Hey Brock!  My question for you is in regards to the effects of the training mask.  I like a little more understanding on what effects it does have on your body after wearing it on a short distance run such as 3 miles.  My legs feel really heavy afterwards.  I would assume that’s lactic acid buildup.  I look forward to hearing your response.  Thanks!

Brock:               Yeah, I’ve started using the – oh no, what’s the other thing called and looks like a – an e-cigarette?  PowerLung!

Ben:                   Oh PowerLung, yeah.  Well, you don’t really sue the PowerLung when you’re exercising, like – well, you could but you got to like hold it up to your mouth.  It would really be awkward.

Brock:               I think I brought it up that was like I like to use it when I’m sitting in front of the TV and that some, but it shot across the room and broke a little bit but…

Ben:                   It shot out of your mouth?

Brock:               Yeah.  It did.  I was breathing too hard.  I overpowered it.  But anyway, yeah, the training mask – mine’s been in the drawer for a while.  You use yours all the time, don’t you?

Ben:                   Actually, do use the training mask a lot yeah, just because I’m all about, you know, kinda like killing two birds with one stones if I do morning yoga.  I’ll just put on the training mask to train my inspiratory and expiratory muscles a little bit more to get my heart rate a little bit higher and to you know, you essentially when you take it off, it start to feel that you have a third lung and that’s really out work.  It’s like – it causes you to become more aware of taking fuller and deeper breaths.  So, technically if you wanna look at this from a physiological standpoint, when you breathe against resistance, like when you put on one of these masks and all of a sudden breathing becomes hard, the lining in your lung stretches out and the reason that it does that is it allows the alveoli which is where the gas exchange occurs in the lung to also become stretched – the alveoli surface area becomes stretched and that allows for more blood flow to the alveoli for more oxygen transportation into the blood.  So you’re increasing the surface area and because of that, increasing the amount of gases that you can transport into the bloodstream.  The other thing that you’re doing though and I think this is something that – I think this is really the most powerful aspect of using something like a training mask especially like earlier in the day – like doing something to start off  your day is because you become very aware of taking deep breathing.  It’s almost that you turn on your awareness of deep diaphragmatic breathing ‘cause it’s pretty much impossible to get enough oxygen through that thing or to exhale off carbon dioxide without really forceful inhales and exhales.  So you’re training a lot of your rib muscles, you’re training your diaphragm, you are stretching out your lungs and your working on your alveoli, but I’m gonna be straight forward with you.  I haven’t seen a lot of clinical evidence of an increase in actual oxygen delivery to blood flow ‘cause that’s a pretty difficult study to pull off.  I’m not quite sure how you would – how you would do that without a pretty intensive laboratory setting study and possibly even muscle biopsies.  You know, if you wanted to look at the actual oxygen exchange or oxygen delivery to muscle tissue, but as far as activation of inspiratory and expiratory muscles, as far as the activation of the diaphragm, deep breathing, that type of thing, that’s very simple to quantify.  You can look at like your respiratory rate the rest of the day, you can also qualitatively just pay attention to how deeply you’re breathing, how oxygenated you feel, and I notice a big difference when I use one of these things.


                           Now, as far as the lactic acid component, you know, a lot of people think that oxygen and lactic acid are pretty – uhm, what would be – the way that I want to describe this, they’re basically – the oxygen is the one biggest way that you get rid of lactic acid. But the fact is, lactic acid can be formed anytime glycolysis takes place.  So anytime that you are burning carbohydrates or you’re working out an exercise intensity that burns carbohydrates, lactic acid is gonna form whether or not oxygen is present or oxygen is absent.  So, it’s actually never been shown that a lack of oxygen in the muscles at any exercise intensity above lactate threshold is necessarily going to cause this huge accumulation of lactic acid.  So generally what happens is lactic acid gets converted into pyruvate which can then get converted into glucose, and you do need a little bit of oxygen to allow that to happen, that’s called the Cori Cycle.  And then glucose gets metabolized by working muscles or it can get stored in the muscles as glycogen.  So, clearance of lactate from the blood can occur that way, but lactate can also – it can be buffered by enzymes at the muscular level without necessarily getting converted to pyruvate in the presence of oxygen and getting converted into glucose.  So lactate accumulation, uhm, I’m not convinced that you’re gonna be in like a state of extreme lactic acidosis when you’re using one of these training masks.  I’m not sure, and again, like I haven’t seen it proven or I haven’t seen any studies that have shown you accumulate a bunch of lactic acid when you use one of these training masks.  It’s more likely that you would accumulate lactic acid just from pushing yourself at a harder intensity.  But it is really interesting to see a study on whether or not there actually is a buildup of lactic acid from some kind of a lack of oxygen by using something like the training masks.  I think that possibly one of the things that you maybe feeling as far as the heavy legs when you’re using something like the training mask, is instead of shuttling your blood to your inspiratory and expiratory muscles, and your diaphragm and just lets blood to go around because of your respiratory muscles are having to work rather than necessarily an extreme buildup of lactic acid in the legs.  And the reason that I think that might be the case is that there was a study that was done in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning pretty recently, and they didn’t use the training mask with it, what they did was they studied rugby players who are doing shuttle runs back and forth on the grid and they’re actually doing a defensive roll during the shuttle run where they drop the ground and roll on their back, and they roll to their chest again before standing up and continuing to run.  I like to do that when I’m just running down the street just to…

Brock:               Just drop and roll.

Ben:                   I just drop and roll.  Just – just ‘cause it looks cool.  Yeah.

Brock:               People are like – what?  What happen?  Is he okay?

Ben:                   I’m training to be an assassin, ninja.  Anyways though, they did this and what the researchers measure was blood lactate levels, and these guys were wearing a nose clip to restrict their nasal breathing, and of course, then they have another group that shuttle run normally and there was no difference between the restricted breathing condition and the normal condition and when they looked at blood lactate.  And so, I just really doubt that restricting breathing is gonna cause a significant amount of lactic acidosis.  I just think there’s probably something else that’s going on and my hypothesis is that it’s just shuttling of blood around the body rather than a huge buildup of lactic acid.  So, the other thing there are some situations in which I don’t think you should use a training mask.  And there was another study – you know, I came across it. It was two months ago, I think it was the Journal of Strength Conditioning Research, but they noted a drop in movement quality in the presence of hypoxia.  Meaning that if you’re doing like say Olympic weight lifting or you’re doing skill training, maybe you’re doing some running drills or you’re working on cadence or something like that, I don’t think that restricting oxygen or distracting yourself by putting a huge strain on your inspiratory muscle is a good idea. I even find that when I’m doing yoga wearing something like the elevation training mask, I can’t really focus that well on the more advanced poses.  So, what I’m trying to say here is, biomechanical quality of movement can go out the window when you’re wearing one of these things.


                           So kinda like pick your poison wisely and don’t use it in situations where you might either increase your risk of injury, or be training yourself to have poor quality of movement.  Basically, use a training mask when you’re doing things that you’re already good at as far as movement goes or things that don’t require huge amount of movement quality like if you use to ride in your bike, that doesn’t require a lot of biomechanical coordination.  I suppose there are some individuals you have seen ride a bike, falling over at stop lights, probably you should wear a training mask…

Brock:               You haven’t seen me ride my bike.

Ben:                   Yeah, but hopefully I’m getting the idea across here, right?  Like basically if it’s a very complex movement, don’t wear one of these training mask.  Don’t freakin’ like hop on them, bossy bolt the gym with a barbell on your back doing squats, wearing a training mask.  Don’t be that person.  As a matter of fact, don’t even be the person hopping on a stability ball at the gym to do a squat, period.  It’s kinda silly.  But if you’re just gonna like go do a tabata set on a treadmill, you know, throw on one of the training mask, and that would really help you with your deep diaphragmatic breathing.  If you can do yoga session and just do your normal yoga sun salutation, throw on a training mask so you’re working inspiratory and expiratory muscles even harder.  But to answer your question, that was a really long answer, Jeff, but no it’s not lactic acid buildup.  It’s probably just the shuttling of blood to more of your inspiratory and expiratory muscles.  So, we do just like we have discounts on – we get so many discounts.  People are pretty generous with the Ben Greenfield fitness show.  We have a discount on the training mask.

Brock:               That’s why they call you bargain basement Ben!

Ben:                   That’s what they call me.  GREEN1 is the discount on the training mask.  So, GREEN1 will give you a 20% discount at  trainingmask .com.  So, if you wanna get one and try it out, if you don’t have one, go to, use 20% discount code GREEN1, it’s green and number 1, you get a discount.  So, there you go.  Knock yourself out, don’t pass out.

Dan:                  Hello Ben and Brock!  This is Dan from Talkeetna, Alaska.  I have a question about Chaga.  It’s a kind of fungus that grows on  paper birds trees and it allegedly has some cancer-fighting properties as well as some enormous load of antioxidants.  What do you know about this stuff?  Is any of these true?  Is this a good thing to add to my regular routine of healthy supplements, etc.?  Love the show!  Look forward to hearing input on this. Thanks a lot.  Bye.

Brock:               I have to look up Chaga.  I’ve never heard of Chaga.

Ben:                   Chaga!  I actually – I hadn’t heard of it about until a couple of months ago, and I actually got Chaga tea.  There’s this stuff called Four Sigma Foods Chaga Tea and it’s got like mint and rosehip, and what else is in there – like Ginseng, and chaga.  I’ve got a box of it upstairs right now.  I’ve actually have a couple of it this week.  And what chaga is, you know, when you look at it from like a cancer-fighting standpoint, is it does have compounds in it.  A lot of mushrooms have compounds in it that could potentially have anti-carcinogenic properties.  The compound…

Brock:               That’s right, chaga is actually a mushroom, isn’t it?

Ben:                   Yeah, beta-glucan…

Brock:               That totally freaked me out.  That seems…

Ben:                   Yeah, grows on the side of trees but beta-glucans have been shown in research to have an effect on cancerous tumors by triggering an immune system response.  They are polysaccharides, and a lot of mushrooms have these.  But yes, chagas are pretty high on these and it’s got pretty high antioxidant amounts in it.  It’s got what are called geno-protective effect so it may even decrease the rate in which telomeres shortened,  so it could have a little bit of an anti-aging effects, too.  And again, like I hadn’t heard about chaga until a few months ago and started to look into and it’s got a lot of other cool things.  Like it’s got a bunch of terpenes in it, kinda similar to coffee or tea, and there’s a little bit, because of that a little bit of like a wakefulness effect, right, like a little bit of cognitive boosting effect.  So it acts similarly like we’re looking at reishi and shitake, and cordyceps which is more of a fungus than a mushroom per se.  It’s got a lot of really cool properties, it’s relatively high in minerals as well, and I’m starting to see it appear in more and more things like bars, and powders, and teas ‘cause I think a lot of more people are finding out about it.  But this specific thing has been studied for its anti-tumor effect, it’s effect on blood sugar.  It’s even been studied a little bit when it comes to HIV.


                           And then finally for chronic bronchitis or pneumonia, or lung disorders.  It appears to help a little bit with those types of things as well.  So it’s like a general immunity type of effect.  So, yeah, it’s just a mushroom, grows on birch trees and yeah…

Brock:               Most importantly, how does it taste?

Ben:                   You know, they’ve got a little bit of Stevia.  The only form in which I’ve personally consumed chaga has been in this tea.  The tea is made by – I’ll put a link to it in the show notes – Four Sigma Foods.  They made like a reishi tea, a cordyceps tea, pretty much like if it has mushrooms in it, they make it.  And they use what’s called dual extraction, and from what I understand dual extraction allows you to get a more concentrated form of the herb kinda in an itty-bitty tea bag.  So, it’s kinda like they say in Aladdin – phenomenal cosmic power.  Itty-bitty little space!  So anyways…

Brock:               Is that what they say?

Ben:                   I’m pretty sure that’s what the genie says in Aladdin, yeah.  So…

Brock:               You have children, don’t you?

Ben:                   I have ‘lil – I have children, yes.  We play the Disney channel on Pandora 24/7.  It’s crazy.  As a matter of fact, I’ll tell you a funny story ‘cause we always like to talk about dirty things on this podcast.  I don’t know why.  My wife and I wanted to get it on the other night, and we turn on the radio beatin’ like the sound system in the house, and it was like Pocahontas singing Just Around the River Bend, and there’s nothing to just all of a sudden kill the mood as Disney coming on.  And because Disney has pretty much like in our house 24/7 so if we turn on the radio, we wanna get like some kind of a romantic channel and we have to fight through Disney song and somehow maintain staying in the mood as we – as we anxiously trying to change the channel.  So, anyways…

Brock:               (singing)  It’s a small world after all, oh no!  (laughter).  Oh, my boner!

Ben:                   Oh my gosh!  I hope no children are listening in right now.  So, chaga tea, I like it.  I actually really like this Four Sigma Foods stuff ‘cause it’s a really pure blend and you can go and check out their website.  It’s actually been around a really long time and they’ve been making this tea for quite a while using wild mushrooms and this dual extraction process that they use a lot to get it.  Really concentrated as well, so chaga tea, I’m a fan.

Steve:                Hey Ben!  So, I am a three-event water ski athlete which I know is something very odd but I’ve come to find that balance is a key component of this sport.  I was just wondering if you had any good ideas on vestibular training, also somatosensory training.  Thanks.

Brock:               That was quite a while ago that you had that fellow from Zed Health on.

Ben:                   Yeah, or as we say here in the US – Z Health.

Brock:               Oh yeah. Z Health.

Ben:                   Yeah, we’ll put a link to that in the show notes but I interviewed this guy named Eric Cobb and he has this training program called Z Health.  And it trains your nervous system, like they’re the people that make for example, this Vision Gym which is – you order it and you get a series of eye charts, and eye training tools, and eye training exercises, and that would be considered training your visual system, right, so you got like your visual system and your vestibular system which is kinda like more like your ears and your somatosensory system which is more like your joints.  And those are three main balance systems that you’d wanna train if you’re sayin’ an athlete, and frankly a lot of us train our muscular skeletal system and neglect a lot of these neuromuscular components.  But Z Health, like they certify personal trainers but then they’ve also got packages that’ll train these different elements of your nervous system.  And I think it’s really important so they do visual skills training, and you’ll do like balance challenges, and really non-traditional strength training exercises and now what they call sensory integration drills where you’re doing things for example, convergent and divergent charts with the eyes where you’re training your eyes to move farther apart, and then close together, and then up and down, and so you’re increasing you peripheral vision, your eye tracking, your visual perception, your acuity, etc.  And then, it’s actually a pretty good method if you’re on glasses or you use contacts – on glasses, wearing glasses, yeah.  You’re on drugs.

Brock:               On drugs, on glasses…

Ben:                   Uhm, anyways though, so that’s a pretty cool program that you should go, listen Steve or anybody else who wants to improve balance.


                           You should go, listen to that podcast there with Cobb ‘cause he gets into a lot of the stuff.  We’ll put a link to it in the show notes over at but as far as, you know, you asked specifically about vestibular and somatosensory training, and that’s not really the eye training as much as that is like I mentioned – it’s more of the ear training and more of the joints training.  So for the vestibular balance, just think about anything that you would do to take care of your vestibular apparati which should be your ears, right, so you’ve got like motion and equilibrium, and knowledge of where your body is at in space, that’s all governed by your vestibular apparatus which is part of your ear.  You have these three little canals in your ears where gravity is detected and so is like front to back, and side to side movement.  So these canals are filled with a special fluid.  It’s called endolymph and that detects rotational movements when your head rotates in one direction.  You know, stuff essentially slushes around in there and kinda detects where you at in space, and if you don’t take care of your ear anatomy and your ear health, then you can lose a lot of that vestibular balance.  So for example, if you listen to a  lot of loud music, if your clubbing a lot, if you’re playing music really loud in your cars or in your headphones or even if you’re holding cell phone up to your ear which produces vibration and radiation and heat, that can all affect your vestibular balance.  So, take care of your ears in that sense.  And then when you consider that these fluids slushes around whenever you are thrown off balance, you can do things like when you’re at the gym, when you’re walking, look for things to stand on around you like narrow ridges or sidewalk posts, or the back of the bench in a park or the rails on fences, and approach movement as a little bit more of like a Parkour kinda like exploring type of activity where when you walk into the grocery store, maybe you’re balancing on the little curbs in between the – where the car is parked and maybe you are focusing on – the grocery store parking lot is probably a horrid example.  Jumping off a car…

Brock:               That seems dangerous.

Ben:                   … and leaping over the backs of small children, but…

Brock:               I was hanging out with Katy Bowman last fall and I was like sort of walking towards her and she was standing there on one foot on one of those little concrete barriers in the parking lot.  Now I was waiting for her to do something really cool and she didn’t move.  She has kept standing there and I finally was like – are you gonna do something? And she’s like “I’m doing it!”  And she was basically doing exactly that.  For those of you who don’t know who Katy Bowman is, she’s like – she’s awesome, you just look her up.

Ben:                   Yeah.  I mean, even right now while we’re talking… I’m on my little treadmill that I walk on when I’m on my desk but I’ve got this foam pad, it’s called a Kybun – k-y-b-u-n, and it’s one of these anti-fatigue pads you that you can stand on, but it’s really dense foam and when I stand on one leg like right now I’m standing on my left leg, it’s almost impossible for me to stay still, right, like these little vibrations and these little movements that are forcing that fluid in my ears to slush around and can you hear the fluid slushing, Brock?

Brock:               Always.

Ben:                   Slush!  Slush!  Anyways though, I’m training my vestibular system when I do stuff like that.

Brock:               They’re very noisy in your ears.

Ben:                   So take care of your ears but then also engage in activities that kinda force you to make these micro adjustments.  And then as far as your somatosensory balance, that just refers to the fact that your skin, and your muscles, and your joints, all have these sensory receptors. They’re called proprioceptors and they’re sensitive to stretch or pressure in the surrounding tissues and so like when you feel increase pressure in the front part of the soles of your feet when you lean forward, the sensory receptors in your feet are sending impulses to your brain that help you recognize where your body is at in space even if your eyes are closed, you  know, so your visual system is turned off, or your ears are plugged.  So you can train your somatosensory system without your eyes or your ears being involved.  And really, part of that is the type of thing we just talked about like standing on unstable surfaces like wobble boards or thick balance mats or even these balance disk pillows that you see at the gym.  But there are other things that you can do too like vibration platforms, those are great like doing it like yoga moves, standing on one leg, even standing on both legs on a vibration platform, that’s really great for your somatosensory system.  A mini trampoline works kinda similarly like you can – my grandma actually has one of these mini trampolines and when I visit her house in the mornings – I don’t know why I haven’t got one for my own house ‘cause they’re kinda fun.  But when I get up in the morning, I bounce up and down on that thing.  You could do like 10 bounces for your left leg, 10 for your right leg, and do like 9, 9, 8, 8, 7, 7, just like go down to 1.


It’s almost like meditation, but it’s kinda fun and it has that one-two combo of course, it also induces a bowel movement in the morning so you got that.

Brock:               Hooray!

Ben:                   You got that going for you too. You don’t have to strap on running shoes and go for a run.  It’s the insty poop machine.  So, actually I don’t know if the vibration platform works the same way too.  You can try.  Get into like the squatty potty position on a vibration platform.  Anyways though, I’m a fan of any of those kinda surfaces that move around a little bit as you’re standing, and then anytime you can find excuses stand on one leg and for proprioception interestingly, you really fire up the proprioceptors when you stand on one leg or when you balance at elevation.  So if can fool your body into thinking that’s in danger by getting up on a plyometric box and doing single leg stances up on a plyometric box, where it’s not like you’re gonna die if you fall off the thing, but there’s a little bit of a balance component.  Or you, you know, if you’re outside you can find a rock to stand on or even like walking on a fence or balancing on a park bench, doing things like that can actually be really, really great for turning on the proprioceptors even more than you would normally.  So, using elevated surfaces, that’s another great cue for your proprioceptors system.  So those are some of the things that I would do.  I’ll put a link to the Z Health podcast in the show notes.  If I can find a link to this – this foam mat that I stand on while I’m working on my desk, I’ll get that in for you too, it’s called the Kybun.  It’s made in Israel but I’ll see if I can find it for you.  And yeah!  So that’s where I would start.

Laurie:              Hi Ben, this is Laurie.  I’ve been listening to your podcast for many years.  I’m excited to be able to leave a first question.  So, I heard recently that there are differences in cinnamon.  I know that cinnamon can help with blood sugar and I wanted to find out what type of cinnamon we should be eating or adding to our foods to have this great – to keep our blood sugar normal.  Anyway, thank you so much.  Love your podcast and have a great day!

Brock:               There’s the store down the street from my house.  It’s like one of those organic bulk stores and they sell ground cinnamon, and they sell the cinnamon sticks.  And the cinnamon sticks are like sale on – cinnamon sticks.  And they’re like easily like 5 times the price.  I had to bring them home and put them in the coffee grinder and grind them up but they taste so much better.  It’s amazing!  I could just, it’s so cinnamoney!

Ben:                   That’s actually a way to tell if your cinnamon is made from true cinnamon is you get those cinnamon sticks and if you look at them really closely, the plant bark is thinner.  So you can see multiple layers of the bark on the cinnamon sticks…

Brock:               I can crumble it up with my fingers.

Ben:                   Yeah.  Like that’s – that’s real cinnamon like most of the time when you get a cinnamon stick or even when you get cinnamon in general from the grocery store, it’s not cinnamon, it’s cassia, and it’s really – it doesn’t have many of the same biological benefits of cassia.  Now, I mean technically, cassia is in the cinnamon family, it’s nowhere near this Ceylon or Kaylon or however you want to pronounce it.  It’s C-e-y-l-o-n, that’s the form of cinnamon that’s been found to be beneficial for say, controlling blood sugar or for having like the fiber effect, and the beneficial effect, it can even act as a probiotic for the good bacteria in your gut.  Cinnamon has a lot of cool effect from type 2 diabetes, to antioxidant activity, and all the studies that have been done on it and they even compared like Ceylon, it’s also known as common cinnamon with cassia cinnamon and the Ceylon, always wins out as far as the amount.  Usually it’s the equivalent of right around 2 teaspoons.  Some people don’t eat enough cinnamon to get the benefits.  Like in my morning smoothie, I put a couple of teaspoons of cinnamon.  That’s how you get the fiber, the blood sugar controlling effect.  Anytime you take it with a meal that has carbohydrates, it will lower the blood sugar so, you know, if you’re gonna have like a twinky, put some cinnamon on there, and it’ll definitely help out.

Brock:               I guess.

Ben:                   Yeah, but it’s Ceylon  C-e-y-l-o-n.  I’m not sure if there’s anything else I should add to this discussion aside from just like – if you really want the blood sugar controlling ability of cinnamon, you do need to get the Ceylon form.  So…

Brock:               So it is just that much better or does the other one actually not have any effect?

Ben:                   Well, it’s the coumarin content.


                           Coumarins are these plant components and there are naturally occurring levels of coumarin in Ceylon cinnamon that are pretty small and they’re much, much higher in the cassia cinnamon that are – they can actually be a little bit toxic to the liver, a little bit toxic to the nervous system, but it also inhibits a lot of the blood sugar lowering effects that the cassia cinnamon could have.

Brock:               Gotcha!

Ben:                   Yeah.  So I mean you may get a little bit of benefit from the cassia but as far as the research and again, there’s multiple research studies that they’ve done on the effects of cinnamon extract on the plasma glucose and on blood sugar control because they actually have looked at it quite a bit for – it’s anti-diabetic effects, and always it’s the Ceylon that wins out, so.

Brock:               I’ve been waiting for the one factor in life to come along and put me in the “pour house” and I think it’s gonna be my cinnamon addiction…

Ben:                   That’s right.  Between like cinnamon, upgraded coffee, what are the other things, now we’ve got chaga tea to throw in there…

Brock:               And now all the creatine…

Ben:                   Yeah, and the creatine, yeah, we just basically bankrupted folks with podcast number 309.  So… but that’s alright.  If you do still love us, even if we just bankrupted you, you can leave a review.  And if you leave your review in iTunes, we will send you a sweet Ben Greenfield fitness gear pack.  A tech t-shirt, a BPA-free water bottle, and sweet beanie that you could even wear when you’re doing your little cold thermogenesis sessions ‘cause it actually just cause you to wear a beanie, to wear gloves, to wear socks or shoes, and to wear something over your crotch.  You cover the vital areas, it can actually help out the effects of cold thermogenesis.  So whatever you consider to be a vital area, cover up and the beanie will help you do that.  I was actually wearing the beanie the other day and someone came up to me, asked me if I knew Ben Greenfield, and I…

Brock:               Did you say no?

Ben:                   I actually… I said yes, and I was quiet because I want to see what they would say.  Anyways though, so a beanie is another thing that you will get if you leave your review.  If you hear us read your review on the show, just email [email protected] and we’ll get a gear pack your way.  So, this week’s review is called R & R Like a Girl by ELAHuggs.  Great name.

Brock:               ELAHuggs!

Ben:                   So, Brock, you wanna take this one away?

Brock:               Have you ever listen to the Ella On The Air, or On The Air With Ella podcast?

Ben:                   On The Air With Ella? No!

Brock:               Yeah, that’s a – this is her.

Ben:                   Sounds like a Canadian thing.

Brock:               No!  I don’t think so.

Ben:                   Oh really?  She’s – was it a podcast?

Brock:               Yeah!

Ben:                   And this is the Ella that – that…

Brock:               This is the Ella!

Ben:                   How do you know?

Brock:               She said it at the end of her review.

Ben:                   Oh, okay.  Hon, take it away!

Brock:               Alright.  So it goes like this:  Starts with a NOTE: “You’re getting this review because you ask for a post-vaccination show rebound and I am here to help.”

Ben:                   Uhm, that’s awesome.  ‘Cause we got crucified.

Brock:               Yeah.  That is awesome.  And, it goes like this:  “Ben knows his stuff but maintains enough humor to make his actual super hero-ism…” super heroism?  There we go.  “Just bearable.” Just bearable.

Ben:                   Just barely.

Brock:               “Seriously, he is amazing.  Brock is an under-appreciated, great “everyman” co-host.  (Well, “everyman” is relative here).  Ayt!  What does that mean?

Ben:                   It means you’re very normal.  (chuckles)  Alright, sorry, go ahead.

Brock:               It sound that she said that and then took a back.  But anyway,  “Thanks for remembering that chicks dig your show too.  Thanks for the fact-based knowledge bombs, the great research and the humor.  As a sign of my devotion, I volunteer to replace your terrifying intro/outro with someone who can pronounce “triathlon”.   Keep the great content coming.”  Ella from On The Air with Ella podcast.

Ben:                   Now I’m gonna have to go listen to Ella’s podcast.

Brock:               Yeah.  I think we just plugged it several times for so that helps her out.

Ben:                   Yeah, that’s true we did just plugged her.  So, Ella you can just send your check to… uhm,  no I’m just kidding.  Anyways though, yeah that’s great!  Cool!  I like it!  Well, if you’re listening in and you too would like to leave a review and spread the good karma all over the place, then just go to iTunes and you can leave a star, leave a review.  Be nice.  So, that being said, we’ll also put the links for everything we talked about on the show like the training mask discount code, and the chaga tea I was talking about, the desk mat, Z Health, all the different places Brock and I are gonna be like the New Media Expo, and Paleo FX,


we’ll put all that in the show notes at and be sure to tune in this weekend for a special episode and I believe this one is about if I’m not mistaken, what’s called drainage and detox.  Kinda gross!  It’s actually – it’s a really kinda gross podcast ‘cause it’s about drainage but it’s actually kind of fascinating too.

Brock:               It’s not called – it’s not leakage at least.  Drainage sounds like it’s on purpose.

Ben:                   Exactly!  So, check that out and until next time.  Have a healthy week!

                           Visit for even more cutting edge fitness, nutrition, and performance advice.

[1:11:21.7]       END





















#309: Is A Low Heart Rate Bad, Chaga Tea, Cinnamon, The Best Ways To Build Balance & More!


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

Feb 18, 2015 Podcast: Can A Low Heart Rate Be Unhealthy, Does A Training Mask Make You Slower, What Is Chaga, The Best Ways To Build Balance, and What Is The Best Kind Of Cinnamon.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, call 1-877-209-9439, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form… but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


News Flashes:

You can receive these News Flashes (and more) every single day, if you follow Ben on, and Google+.


A donate button that reads - keep the podcasts comingSpecial Announcements:

This podcast is brought to you by Casper. Get $50 toward any mattress purchase by visiting and using promo code ben.

March 3, Tuesday, 7pm Pacific/10pm Eastern: This month’s Inner Circle workshop is our quarterly “Winter 2015 What’s Working Now Show”, in which you get to join Ben and Jessa as they talk about the latest workouts, fitness gear, nutrition supplements, recipes, anti-aging strategies, biohacks, healthy kid tips, and more – along with your questions and answers!

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 13-16, 2015: Ben is speaking at New Media Expo, where the world’s top bloggers, podcasters and content creators teach you how to make money by creating content online, and how to enhance your blog, your podcast, your videos and any other media you create online. Better yet, you can come and attend the conference, then join Ben at Spartan Vegas on April 17! Click here to register for New Media Expo and use code “bgreenfield20″ to get 20% off the current pricing.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.

May 1-3, 2015: Ben is speaking at Ari Meisel’s Less Doing Conference, the year’s top conference for learning about things like how to manage your email inbox, hack productivity, enhance your cognitive performance, learn how to use the latest and greatest phone apps and productivity software, free up as much time as possible, and much more! Click here to get more details and to book a free productivity call with Ari.

The Ben Greenfield Experience is now available for either May 15-17 weekend or May 22-24 weekend (you choose): This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for you to be completely immersed in Ben’s unique combination of healthy, ancestral living and cutting-edge biohacking. Total cost is 10K for entire weekend(Fri/Sat/Sun) – includes yoga, workouts, food, and the full learning and living experience. You’ll leave completely equipped with everything you need to know to reinvent your home, your body and your life.

The entire experience takes place at the Greenfield home in the forest, which is completely biohacked to support optimum human biology, including 100% organic and green experience with zero electrical pollution, allergen-free materials, natural mattresses, circadian rhythm matched lighting and much more – including:

-Outdoor obstacle course on 10 acres of forest, with nature walking trails, climbing wall, rope traverses, spear throws, sandbag carries, Tarzan swing, monkey bars, mountain bikes, woodchopping and everything you need for the ultimate outdoor fitness experience.

-Completely outfitted gym with power lifting rack, indoor swim trainer, hypoxic air generator, bike trainer, elevation training mask, luxury Tru-Form running treadmill, outdoor yoga patio and much more.

-Cold thermogenesis endless swimming pool with chlorine-free, naturally ozone-treated hot tub for a one-of-a-kind outdoor, winter forest swimming and soaking body treatment.

-Plenty of biohacks to play with, including a recovery-enhancing Biomat, infrared lighting, electrostimulation, inversion table, power lung, and ore.

-Locally-sourced, natural and nourishing food from over a dozen nearby organic farms and Ben’s goats, chickens, organic vegetable garden, along with filtered, structured and deeply hydrating well water.

-Giant living room with wood burning stove and enormous oak table for learning, socializing, working, eating and relaxing.

-Outdoor obstacle course workouts, hiking excursions, yoga and high performance living led by America’s top personal trainer.

E-mail ben at if you are interested, and Ben will set up a private phone call with you to discuss details and your eligibility.

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

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



Listener Q&A:

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

Can A Low Heart Rate Be Unhealthy?

Ben says: When he woke up yesterday his heart rate was 38bpm. He knows having a lower hr is good but lately it seems that the more rest days he takes, the lower it gets. Is this a sign of overtraining? He is a little worried about that. He is a skateboarder, spin instructor, personal trainer, teaches aerobics and is pretty active.

Does A Training Mask Make You Slower?

Jeff says: He wants to understand the effects of the TrainingMask better. When he uses it for a shorter run (like a 3 mile training run) his legs feel really heavy. He assumes that is the lactic acid build up? Can you explain how this is working?

In my response I recommend: – GREEN1 gives 20% discount

What is Chaga?

Dan says: He wants to know more about Chaga. It allegedly has cancer fighting properties as well as a huge load of antioxidants. Is this true? Is this something he should be adding it to his list of supplements?

In my response I recommend:
-FourSigmaFoods Chaga Tea – ben-greenfield gives 15% discount

The Best Ways To Build Balance

Steve says: He is a 3 event water ski athlete and he is looking for some help with his balance (a big part of what he does). Do you have any good ideas on vestibular and somatosensory training?

In my response I recommend:
-Z-Health and my podcast with Eric Cobb
-Kybun desk mat

What Is The Best Kind Of Cinnamon?

Laurie says: She recently heard that there are different types of cinnamon out there. She knows that it can help with blood sugar and wanted to find out what type of cinnamon we should be eating and adding to our food to get this benefit.


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


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Why Strong People Are Harder To Kill (And How To Get Strong).

I think I first heard it from a Navy SEAL that “Strong People Are Harder To Kill”.
And you’re going to learn all about why that is in today’s podcast, with my guest Keith Norris.
At 15, Texan Keith was already involved in one of the premier fitness and weight training scenes in the country ­­ Powerhouse Gym, a legendary bodybuilding, training, and powerlifting mecca in San Antonio that launched the careers of athletes like Ms. Olympia Rachel McLish, Lori Bowen-­Rice, Jeep Swenson and many others.
A knee injury derailed Keith’s career as a linebacker at Texas State, but his experience rehabbing and working with some of the best strength coaches in the country continued to increase his interest in intelligent body development. In the mid 90s Keith competed in AAU Bodybuilding and won the title of Mr. Virginia and runner-up to Mr. America.
In 2010, after navigating a successful 9­ year military and 15 ­year corporate career, Keith was finally able to follow up on his lifelong dedication to training and come on board Efficient Exercise as a partner and regional manager. Keith, along with his wife, Michelle also blogs at “Ancestral Momentum ­- Theory to Practice” and is one of the leading figures in the exploding Paleo nutrition and health movement as the founder of the Paleo f(x) conference.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
-Why “strong people are harder to kill”…
-How women and endurance athletes can keep from getting bulky when getting strong…
-Keith’s unique approach to building strength and how to match your body’s force production curve…
-How you can strike a balance between constantly being in an anabolic state, and the life extending benefits of things like intermittent fasting and calorie restriction…
-How many sets and reps you need to get as strong as possible…
-The best supplements for strength building…
Resources Keith and I discuss during this episode include:
-Paleo f(x), April 24-26th 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.
-CREO2 Creatine (use 50% discount code MSTBG09).
Do you have questions about how to get strong, or why strong people are harder to kill? Leave your thoughts below.

Episode #308 – Full Transcript

Podcast #308 from


Introduction:           In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Can Running Too Much Kill You or Make your Boobs Smaller, Fexaramine for Fat Loss, Does Himalayan Salt have dangerous Amounts of Iron, Staying Fit During Long Road Trips and much more.

Welcome to the podcast.  We provide you with everything you need to know for total performance, fat loss, recovery, digestion, sleep, brain, and hormone optimization.  So whether you’re an Ironman triathlete, or you just wanna shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from

Brock:               I don’t know if people at home could hear me snickering through the intro to this podcast, but I can’t help it, you said “boobs”.

Ben:                   Because I said the word “boobs”.  Yes, those are funny to men everywhere on the face of the planet.

Brock:               I blushed a little, too.

Ben:                   Yes.  Funny, you’re actually quite concerning when we’re talking about making them smaller.

Brock:               Indeed.

Ben:                   We will talk about that today, about running and whether it can kill you or make your boobs smaller.  But more importantly, let’s talk about our workouts.  Did you have a workout today, Brock?  ‘Cause I know you’re getting’ ready for a half marathon, right?

Brock:               Yeah, yeah.  I did a sort of a sprint workout with 30 second super hard and 90 second recovery ten times over.  I believe you call it some sort of time saver.

Ben:                   The treadmill one?

Brock:               Yeah.  Yeah, I did it outside, though, ‘cause I don’t have a gym membership at the moment, so sort of simulated it on the trails.

Ben:                   Did you simulate the actual gym?  Did you spray like perfume and perhaps throw a few TVs up on the corner of the tree?

Brock:               I carried a TV with me the entire time and I occasionally just like bumped into myself and was a total jerk about it and …

Ben:                   Toss a few magazines in there, hire some meatheads to sit around reading books in between their bench press.

Brock:               Run some MERSA on myself.

Ben:                   Yeah, that’s great.  I love gyms.  Hey, my workout was good.  I’ve been doing- rather than my morning yoga, I’ve been shooting in the mornings ‘cause I’m preparing for this bow hunting competition.

Brock:               Oh, that’s why you’re doing all the bow stuff!  I didn’t know you’re doing competition.  Cool!

Ben:                   Well, I got a five day hunt too that’s coming up in September.  That’ll be kind of a narrowly hunt on horseback down in Southern Idaho where we’re gonna go get elk.  But I’m also competing in June in the Train to Hunt Competition which basically involves carrying around ungodly amounts of weights, stopping and doing things like burpees and sprints and then also shooting.  And so for example my workout this morning was I did ten 30-second sprints up my driveway with the weighted pack on.  So  I had a 50-lb sandbag inside the weighted pack and then at the top of the sprint I would take five shots, I was doing five 30 yard shots, right, and then carrying the bow and run back down the driveway and then sprint again.  So…

Brock:               To do that like a quiver and everything, do you totally look like Legolas or Robin Hood?

Ben:                   I have.  I have a quiver.  I‘ve got long, blond hair now.

Brock:               Nice!

Ben:                   And pointy ears.

Brock:               And fancy little booties.

Ben:                   Yes.  And special bread they carry around.  I forgot the name of it but it just keeps you going for days and days, apparently.  I bet it’s gluten-free, too.

Brock:               Oh, yeah.

News Flashes:

Ben:                   Brock, we had to issue a correction in the news flashes a few weeks ago.

Brock:               What?

Ben:                   When we discovered that kettle bell yoga was not actually invented by me and Dan John had written me and informed me that kettle bell yoga’s been around since the 70s or whatever.  Anyways though, we have to issue another correction.  This is turning into…

Brock:               Oh, man.  We’re like Fox News!

Ben:                   I know.

Brock:               Damn.

Ben:                   And this is a correction that came from a fellow, I don’t know if this is his real name, but he left a comment on our last episode, episode number 307 in which we’re talking about jetlag.  Wacker B left a comment because you and I, Brock, were talking about how many time zones you have to cross in order to create jetlag and whether it’s actually the time zones or the amount of time you spend in the airplane itself.  And Wacker seems to be well informed on the topic.  He says, “FYI, you can’t have jetlag of more than 12 hours.  Imagine stepping back and forth across the international dateline…”  Biologically…

Brock:               That sounds like fun.  It’s yesterday, It’s today.  It’s yesterday.  It’s today.

Ben:                   That’d be a great workout, by the way.

Brock:               That would be.

Ben:                   “Biologically, there is no difference although you are changing time zone plus and minus 24 hours.  Similarly, imagine flying in a really fast plane around the world and landing in a time zone different from your start.  Though you’ve traveled 23 or 25 time zones, the biological difference is 1 hour, if you’re landing in a time zone that’s say 1 hour different from your start.


   Adaptive strategies may differ whether it’s plus or minus, but never can you be jetlagged for more than 12 hours.”  So if we do say like it’s a day for every time zone or whatever, I guess the most you could ever be jetlagged would be 12 days, right?

Brock:               Hmm.  I guess!  I’m not sure I follow his logic ‘cause you – there isn’t a time zone that’s actually 24 hours different.

Ben:                   Well, there isn’t but what he’s saying is that… 

Brock:               Is this just – that’s just theoretically.

Ben:                   Yeah, and I guess what would also be the case here is I am wrong because since the speed of planes is going to vary heavily, it really isn’t the amount of time you’ve spent in the plane.  It really comes down to how many time zones that you’ve crossed.

Brock:               Yeah, okay.  So, I was right!

Ben:                   High in my face.  Whacker was right.  Brock I guess was kind of right.  Ben was… he sort sad trample when you’re wrong.  So, that being said, let’s jump into our news flashes.

Brock:               Yes, oh yeah forgot what we’re doing here.

Ben:                   Over at  I’m constantly issuing news flashes about the latest and greatest news.  And as a parent of a couple of young athletes who do happen to play soccer in the fall, in the spring, I found this one pretty interesting.  And if you play soccer, really, if you play any sport that has a half time or your kids play soccer or any sport that has a half time, this is something that you should be aware of.  So this study was done on 22 professional male soccer players.  And what they did was during half time, they had – some of them perform a traditional resting or what they call a passive rest half time.  But then others did a low intensity re-warm up during half time similar to the type of warm up you’d do prior to the game.  And what they found was that in the group that did a re-warm up during half time rather than just sit around and drink juicy juices and eat Snicker bars and lay on their stomachs playing with their iTouches during half time, what they found was that the group that was during a re-warm up had a maintenance of their sprint performance.  They had less of a decrement in their jump performance, but probably more important than those performance variables that they tested, they found that the group that did the re-warm up during half time had more possession of the ball in the beginning of the second half and they studied the fact that they had more possessions of the ball and less defensive high intensity running meaning, less of the need to engage in high intensity running during defense because apparently their greater amount of ball possession early on was allowing them to conserve energy from a defensive standpoint.  They had a gain advantage at the onset of the second half and so if you’re team just wants that slight advantage- they weren’t saying that these advantages would go into the latter half of the second half, but apparently right off the bat, if you really want to perform well in any sport that has a half time and you wanna come out in the- come out of half time into the first part of the second half with all cylinders firing, so to speak, you wanna make sure that you continue to move.  And this seems common sense.  Just a lot of coaches and a lot of players don’t think about this.  So, you know, it’s what I – when I’m playing tennis, like tonight is the night that I play in men’s tennis league and in between our set change, there’s a lot of time guys are sitting down, they’re drinking from their water bottles, stuff like that.  I’m doing lateral lunges, I’m jumping side to side like a boxer, freaking people out as I lunge up and down the court with my racket over my head.  But I try and keep my body warm the whole time and even in sets again, to use the analogy of tennis, like in doubles where I – when my partner’s serving, or my partner is receiving a serve, I’m constantly bouncing foot to foot or doing double bounces foot to foot or jumping back and forth.  But basically this concept of keeping the body kinda sort of turned on like slowly revving that engine or keeping the engine revved.  A lot to be said for it.  So…

Brock:               Interesting!  I’ve never actually watched a professional soccer game.  I know that probably shocked many of our European listeners.  But I know in hockey games, every period begins with quite a substantial re-warm up.   So the hockey players all hit the ice and skid around like mad, shoot on the goal a few times, and get themselves back into the game.  I’m assuming they don’t do that in soccer?

Ben:                   No.  Unfortunately, you just banished yourself to football hell by admitting the fact you’ve never watched a professional soccer game.


Brock:               Ahh, so boring.

Ben:                   You need some time.  Just try it sometime.  Go to some Brazilian bar during the World Cup.  So, anyways, so next –is running too much going to kill you?  And there was this new article that they just published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology that analyzed data from this Copenhagen City heart study.  And this is actually the same data that was published back in 2012 and it caught a lot of publicity then when James O’Keith published in the American Journal of Epidemiology about the Running Will Kill You studies.  And this latest study actually goes in to the speed of running.  And what a lot of the headlines are saying is that fast running is as deadly as sitting on the couch or going out and doing lots of like high-intensity jogging is basically going to increase your risk of mortality.  So is this the case?  Well, let’s look at what the statistics actually say.  I will link to an article in the show notes for this episode.  So if you go to, there is a fantastic rundown of all of the issues with this study done by Alex Hutchinson.  It’s What’s Science.

Brock:               Oh good ol’ Alex.

Ben:                   If you look at just the basic idea here, what happened was the researchers surveyed, again, didn’t study but surveyed, meaning they asked some questions, I believe these were online, a bunch of Danish joggers.  And they categorized 878 of them as light, moderate, or strenuous joggers and 40 of those 878 were in fact identified as strenuous.  And then 10 years later, they kinda checked in on how everyone was doing.  And they found that 17 of those 878 joggers had died.  And 2 of the joggers from the strenuous group had died.  So over the course of the 10 years, 2 out of the 40 strenuous joggers had died and that was the highest proportion of deaths in any of the three groups: the light, the moderate or the strenuous group.  So based on that, they said that, and that’s what the headlines are saying, is that fast running is worse than sitting on the couch when it comes to your risk of death.

Brock:               That was the extent of the study?

Ben:                   That  was the extent.  But statistically-speaking, the fact that 2 out of 40 strenuous joggers died over the course of a decade doesn’t really tell you too much about strenuous jogging.  It’s a very small sample size first of all to make an assumption such as this.  The study does not look into how the runners actually died or whether those causes could even plausibly be related to running.

Brock:               Yeah, did they get hit by a bus?

Ben:                   Yes, there are many, many other- yeah, exactly, it’s possible that maybe running too fast in urban areas makes you the person who’s more likely to step out in front of a bus, even though your heart is working just the same as…

Brock:               And you’re super healthy but you…

Ben:                   …a  light to moderate jogger.  So, yeah, know that if you are one of the people out there listening who, like Brock and I, are doing high intensity interval training and running quickly, it’s not going to kill you.  If anything, and I’ve said this before in the podcast and I talk about this in my book “Beyond Training”.  If you are a runner and you’re engaged in any activity really that’s creating a lot of free radicals- cross fitting, running, triathlons, whatever, then you do have to be a little bit more careful about dumping a bunch of potentially oxidizable fats and sugars into your bloodstream especially from commercial sources or very processed sources simply because you’re pouring gasoline on the fire from both ends.  You’re creating free radicals through exercise and then free radicals stress through diet.  And so the fact that a lot of people who “jog” tend to train to eat and eat to train, if you know what I mean, like they’ll go out to run so that they can have some…

Brock:               They’ll run and burn through these.

Ben:                   …extra chicken wings and beer later on.  That’s the group that I think needs to be careful in terms of their heart disease risk factors.  But if you’re eating a nice, healthy ancestral diet, and  you’ve got a few runs that you’re going on each week, and even doing some high intensity interval training, don’t worry, running is not going to kill you.  This study was pretty heavily flawed, although you may need to, as you’ll find out later in this podcast, worry about your boobs.   So…

Brock:               No!

Ben:                   Then the final study that came across my radar because a friend actually sent this article to me and asked me where they could find these brand new devices that allow you to engage in this cutting-edge, Japanese-style training called kaatsu.


This was something I thought was pretty interesting.  So there’s this revolutionary new training system just coming over from Japan.  The headlines say, and I’ll link to the article in the show notes, called kaatsu.  And what it is is you actually can purchase these kits or you can even get certified in this but basically you can get an online certification course for a thousand dollars and that’s designed to train kaatsu providers and users on the proper use of this kaatsu gear and I’ll explain what that kaatsu gear is here in a second.  You can get a master kaatsu unit for $4,000 which comes with the actual gear that you would need to engage in kaatsu.

Brock:               Wait, how many thousand?

Ben:                   Four thousand.

Brock:               Four thousand!

Ben:                   You could get a smaller lightweight unit intended for one person that’s for a commercial unit for $1,200.  Or you could even get a pair intended for use in the water for $190.  So, that’s kinda the price point that we’re talking about when it comes to this kaatsu gear.  And here is what kaatsu basically is.  It consists of these bands that inflate with air that wrap around specific body parts that you are training such as your upper arms or your upper legs and they cause blood flow to be restricted to your limbs.  This is known as…

Brock:               Sort of like a tourniquet.

Ben:                   Yes, it’s just like a tourniquet as a matter of fact.  It’s known as occlusion training.  So the idea behind occlusion training is that when you restrict blood flow to an area that you are training, you get a huge amount of what’s called metabolic accumulation in that body part.  So instead of letting your body flush all the metabolic products of exertion out of your system, the tourniquet or the kaatsu gear that you purchase with your hard-earned money keeps it all in the area.  So you get this big release of anabolic growth factors, you get a higher recruitment of more fast twitch fibers, and you induce more production of protein.  And it may also help to stimulate the production of heat shock proteins which is the same type of stress resilience that you build when you’re, say, training inside the sauna, as well as the production of nitric oxide synthase, the same type of blood vessel dilating type of metabolite that you’d get when you’re doing, say, cold thermogenesis or high intensity interval training.  So, here is what my response was to the fellow who wrote me about this.  I said we’ve known about this for a long time.  When I was a body builder, we used to take the elastic tubes or the elastic resistance bands at the gym before we do like a set of bicep curls, we’d wrap them around our upper arms.  So the biceps got this huge pump and then when you’re finally done with that set, you’d remove the tourniquet.  You could do the same thing with squats in your upper legs.  Another popular one we’d do is we’d wrap the tourniquet around our upper thighs and we’d do leg extensions on a leg extension machine to get like monster quads.  I think it’s actually kind of silly and a little bit funny that this is now being sold as not just a certification but also as this overpriced training gear when you can in fact use just regular old elastic bands at the gym as makeshift tourniquets.  But you are going to see this at the news probably a few times if you read magazines or whatever this brand new kaatsu training straight out of Japan.  Know that this stuff is not cutting-edge, just like a lot of trends in fitness.  People have been doing it for a long time.  Some of them just figured out how to monetize it.  So, anyways, that is kaatsu training, aka occlusion training, aka putting tourniquets around your limbs and then working out.  It works, yeah, but you don’t have to spend the $4,000.

Brock:               Good.

Special Announcements:

Ben:                   So this podcast is brought to you by Harry’s.  I still wanna know how much they paid to get ‘cause that’s a pretty good URL.

Brock:               That’s an awesome URL.  Although….

Ben:                   It’s h-a-r-r-y-s.

Brock:               Yeah.  I’m wondering if that’s what they had to settle along ‘cause they couldn’t get h-a-i-r.

Ben:                   Exactly.  That would’ve been more appropriate ‘cause harrys for those of you who don’t know what harrys is, they’re razors.  They’re not just razors, but they also have like soap that you can shave with or what we also call in the US- shaving cream.  And also like post-shave lotion.  Actually, we’re sitting on the couch like two nights ago and we’re watching Celebrity Apprentice on Hulu which is one of the shows that I will watch ‘cause I love to like see these celebrities try and figure how to run businesses and race around like chickens with their heads cut off, trying to figure out how to like make a commercial or launch a product.  And we’re sitting and watching it and my wife turns to me and she says, “You smell good!” “You smell good.”  And I had shaved.  I had shaved with my- I have like the whole Harry’s kit.  I have the blade and it’s like this German-engineered blade, I’ve got the handle, I’ve got the shaving cream and it’s like paraben and phthalate-free, yes.


                           And I have the shaving lotion.  And my wife likes it.  So there you go, guys.

Brock:               That is the most important test it could pass.

Ben:                   Yes, it’s a high quality shave, it’s good for your face.  It’s good for your wallet too, they’re not expensive.  And it’s 5 bucks off when you go to and use coupon code BEN. So that’s coupon code BEN and you too can smell like a paraben and phthalate-free fitness nerd.   So check that out.  What else?  We’re giving away some of the Obstacle Dominator training packages.  So if you go to then you will get one of the most amazing and challenging, and crazy blends of workout, and fuelling and training, and obstacle course racing advice that I’ve ever created.  It’s actually the only one I’ve ever created.    But anyways, myself and top Spartan athlete Hunter McIntyre created this and we’re giving away 3 of them and it’s free to go enter the contest so that you could win one for yourself or a friend.  And it’s got everything, the nutrition, the training, tons of interviews, tons of videos all shot up here in my backyard about how to do obstacles and you can check it all out at  So…

Brock:               A word of warning.  There is a workout called death by burpees.

Ben:                   Yes, there’s a workout called death by burpees.  Let your imagination go wild.  Also, I will be speaking, speaking of obstacle course racing, at the New Media Expo.  You can go to  That’s not only where they’re gonna have the podcast awards ceremony, but it’s for any of you out there who have a blog, a podcast, who like create online videos, or basically running a business online that is based on anything that has to do with content creation or media, this is like the conference to go to.  I’m speaking there about podcasting.  And really, deep down inside, selfish reason that I’m going to it is because the Spartan Vegas Race is the day after the conference ends.

Brock:               Oh, yeah!

Ben:                   Yeah, you can go to the conference.  And we’ll put a link in the show notes to both that and the Vegas race.  And you can finish up the conference by going and crawling under barbed wire and carrying giant rocks and doing lots of burpees. So check that out  Also, because we are really into conferences that end with the letter x, you can come here, myself speak at PaleoFX.  Brock’s gonna be there, I’m gonna be there.  It’s pretty much a who’s-who gathering of everybody in the health and nutrition and fitness movement.  You will rub shoulders with folks like Rob Wolfe and Marc Sisson and Brock.  So check that out.

Brock:               Mostly me.

Ben:                   You can get in at here’s the URL paleofx15.  That’s  That’s the special link that they gave us.  And then finally, one more conference for those of you who want to be in New York or are living in New York, you can go to the Less Doing conference.  Go to  That’s

Brock:               I can hardly wait to see what this conference is going to be or more to the point not be.   A lot of people sitting around doing nothing.

Ben:                   Yeah, we pretty much sit around and we do nothing.

Brock:               Then if somebody starts to do something, somebody goes- Stop it! Do less!

Ben:                   It’s about how to do less,  like how to manage your email inbox, and like how to use different phone apps that help you to manage like to do less than hack your productivity, and how to enhance your cognitive performance like smart drugs, or like Dave Asprey’s gonna be speaking there.  I’m gonna be speaking there.  Ari Meisel who wrote the really good book “Less Doing”, he’s gonna be there.  So it’ll be worth attending.  You can get all the details over at  So speaking of doing less, let’s stop our special announcements and answer some questions, shall we?

Brock:               Do less!

Voiceover:        Did you know that Ben Greenfield personally mentors trainers, coaches, physicians, and nutritionists from around the globe?  From business-building tips to advanced human performance and health concepts.  It’s all part of a private mastermind called the Superhuman Coach Network.  When you join, you get instant access to monthly workshops with Ben, a Q and A forum, over 40 hours of cutting-edge audio and video education and much more.  Check it out today and become one of the world’s leading health and fitness experts at  That’s

Listener Q and A: 


Sebastian:        Hi, Ben!  It’s Sebastian from Canada.  I recently read an article about some wondrous miracle drug called fexaramine, fexaramine or something like that.  And apparently this thing is like a weight loss pill.  They finally invented this weight loss pill that if you take it, you shed all these pounds.  I was just wondering what your thoughts are and not really interested in taking it ‘cause I don’t need to lose weight but just wondering if it’s something I should recommend to people when they’re telling me about their problems trying to lose weight and keep it.  Let me know what you think.  Thanks.  Bye.

Brock:               I first heard about this on one of my favorite podcasts, the Science Friday podcast from PRI.

Ben:                   Fexaramine… (whispering)  Yeah, I didn’t hear that podcast but I’ve researched fexaramine a little bit.  I mean I haven’t – I don’t have the little mice in a cage in my office….

Brock:               You haven’t been injecting the poor little mice.

 Ben:                  I mean I’ve read about and looked into fexaramine.  So, it actually is kinda interesting ‘cause if you look at like brown adipose tissue, like we take cold showers for example to increase our levels of brown adipose tissue which are able to actually take calories and generate heat from those calories.  And it’s actually a really, really good way to amp up your calorie-burning activity when you have increased amounts of brown fat and increased amounts of brown fat activity.  And there was this paper in Nature Medicine in January that showed that this metabolite called fexaramine could help turn white fat into brown fat.  But it does more than that.  What it can activate is this receptor that causes you to release bile acids and some of these digestive juices and hormones that would normally help you to absorb nutrients when you eat a meal, when you eat foodstuff, and yes that would make two podcasts weeks in a row I think where I’ve said the word foodstuff.  That’s my new word- foodstuff, ‘cause it sound better than food, sounds more scientific.  Anyways though, normally all those digestive hormones and juices are produced in your liver and then they go into your gallbladder and then they get released into the intestines.  And when that happens, that will flip on this activity that sends your gut a signal that food is there.  And that mobilizes a bunch of blood flow to go gather nutrients and it specifically prepares fat tissue to anticipate the arrival of food and begin to burn calories, because you sense- you know, think of it as you sending your fat cells a message that hey, foods’ on the way so go ahead, it’s okay to burn what you got on board.  And so that’s basically what happens.  And it’s very interesting because you would think that when you stimulate the production of bile acids and digestive hormones, kind of like when you consume an artificial sweetener, that it would cause you to become hungry, ‘cause you’re sending your body a message that – hey, something sweet is getting on the tongue and we’re tasting something that tastes like food, get ready to eat.  Your body produces all of these hormones that prepare you to eat and then again, a great place for sad trombone- there’s no food.  So then you’re hungry in like an hour.  But this fexaramine seems to help at least with mice with fat loss.  Now, anytime that you are messing around with digestion and digestive hormones and bile acid synthesis, you do potentially create some risk for creating some kind of hormonal intolerance.  Or let’s say maybe the inability to – the eventual inability to produce bile acid properly in response to a meal.  But they haven’t studied this stuff long term in either mice or humans to see if that’s the case.  That’s how it works, though.  I would say if it works for me, I’d want to see a longer term study in mice to show that it doesn’t suppress bile acid production long term.  I’d want to see something similar in humans.  One of the cool things is that this stuff does not get out of the intestine.  It does not get out of the liver.  It never gets in your bloodstream.  So that’s kinda cool.  You at least know that it’s – you’re not gonna have it flowin’ anywhere else except your gut.  But I would say, where I’m at is I would still wanna see a little bit more research behind this stuff before I would give it the thumbs up because again, my concern would be it’s potential impact on digestive hormone and bile acid release ‘cause when you get your gallbladder removed, and you can’t produce this bile acid anymore, that’s a big, big issue when it comes to digestive health, constipation, bowel movements…


…production of hydrochloric acid, ability to digest fats, etc., and if a drug creates that same scenario, that would be what we call here on the podcast a bad thing. So yeah, anyways though, that’s the story behind…

Brock:               Shall we call it bad stuff?

Ben:                   Bad stuff.

Alexander:       Hi Ben and Brock!  I’m Amoltz, fan of your show.  Motlz means huge in South Tirrenia, which is my home region in Italy.  I have a question regarding my girlfriend.  She wants to increase the running and the aerobic exercise volume.  Her fear is that her really sexy boobs would start to decline.  What are your suggestions against this problem?  Ferti means chao.  Alexander.

Ben:                   This may actually qualify as our question of the year.

Brock:               I think so.  Alex, you are very entertaining fellow and so is your question.

Ben:                   Yes.  I love it and being married to a runner and having talked to a lot of runners and endurance athletes who have these same concerns.  I definitely have an opinion on it, and I have some advice on it.  And before I jump in, I should say I’m just gonna put this out there right now.  I’m a fan of small boobs, like I’m married to a petite woman and I personally find that kinda sexy.  I’m just not – I’m not a big boob guy.  I never have been.  I’ve never like you know, I’ve always been a little bit more of like a – an A and a B vs. a C and a D, measures me.  What about you, Brock?

Brock:               I like boobs.

Ben:                   Yeah, okay, there you go.

Brock:               All sizes, okay.

Ben:                   All sizes.

Brock:               I like them.

Ben:                   Not picky.  So anyways, boobs!  We should probably just start saying breasts so we sound – ah, more qualified.

Brock:               Probably, yeah.  So we don’t sound like 10 year olds.

Ben:                   Yes, yes.  Considering the huge beating, the ass-kicking that we are experiencing online right now for the podcast that we did on vaccinations.  We should probably just at least get in as many folks’  good graces as possible by at least not overusing the word boobs and saying breast instead, or knockers.  Anyways though, breast are made up of  epithelial tissue and that helps to cushion and support your breast and no matter how much weight that you lose, that epithelial tissue will stick around.  But you can, just like you can shed some fat and decrease the size of the fat cells or the amount of the fat cells are storing anywhere in your body, you can definitely decrease the fat that’s stored in the fat cells and potentially even get some fat cell apoptosis or fat cell death in the breast area and therefore shrink your breast.  And some women’s breast have more fatty tissue while other women’s breast have more epithelial tissue.  Typically women with larger breast do have more fatty tissue in their breast and so women who have naturally larger breast are going to experience once they start running, a greater decrease in breast size as that fat tissue gets metabolized compared to women who naturally have smaller breast who typically have a higher amount of epithelial tissue rather than fatty tissue because that epithelial tissue is not really going to disappear but the fatty tissue will.  So, as far as running, obviously running as an aerobic exercise is catabolic, it is going to cause fat cell mobilization, and fat loss especially if you combine it with fexaramine, your boobs will probably completely disappear.  But anyways, we know that the body is going to tap into some of that storage fat and you’ll get some mobilization of fatty tissue.  In many cases, fat cells unless it’s combined with something like cold thermogenesis, right, unless you’re wearing some kind of special cold thermogenesis bra, fat cell apoptosis or fat cell death is less likely than just a shrinkage of the fat cells as a lot of those fatty acids are removed from them and so what that means is if you stop running or you start eating more food, and those fat cells fill back up, your boobs come back and they come back just as easily as like fat on your butt or on your waistline would come back.  So…

Brock:               Interesting.  So it’s not actually like the cell number isn’t changing just the cell size.

Ben:                   Yeah, and I talked about this a little bit in the podcast that I did with Cate Shanahan.  In addition to cold thermogenesis being something that can induce fat cell death which you know, in many cases when you’re doin’ this on your hip or your upper back or places like that, you’d actually want some of this fat cell death.  The other thing that can really help with fat cell death is the combination of core constriction and the absence of inflammation.  Apparently the absence of inflammation such as you would get from like high amounts of exercise or high amounts of omega 6 fatty acids, or high amounts of sugar or high amounts of commercial meat or dairy, if you’re really clean from that standpoint, apparently fat cell apoptosis occurs more readily in the absence of inflammation.


                           So, of course that could be a catch 22 for you if you’re trying to have big boobs.  So, in addition to not running, maybe you should go out and eat chicken wings and lots of dairy.  Anyways though, that’s a segue because there’s one other thing that we need to talk about in addition to the consideration of fatty tissue and over all calories.  And that would be that you can irreversibly stretch fragile ligaments in your boobs and that can lead to sagging  which can also, you know, for anyone who’s seen like boobs that sag over time.  They also appear less large just because they’re getting closer and closer to the belly button.  Not a pleasant thought but it happens and so if you’re wearing the incorrect bra when you’re running, that can also cause breast shrinkage even though it’s more of an optical illusion, they’re not shrinking they get lower and lower the more years that you run.  And one of the considerations here is that you would want to make sure that you’re using the correct bra if you’re running.  And the best bra for exercising especially running is called the encapsulation bra and that has separate molded cups rather than a compression bra that basically flattens your breast to your chest wall.  This flattens the breast and it limits the bounce but it doesn’t limits side to side or in and out movements whereas if you get an encapsulation bra, that has separate cups and that limits the movements of your breast so that you don’t stretch a lot of those fragile ligaments that could also decrease breast size.  So get the right bra is the first thing that I’m getting at here.  The second thing that I’m getting at and hopefully this was a little bit apparent when I was talking about the fatty tissue is don’t necessarily overdo the catabolic state of running, right.  If you send your body a message that there are no calories present in that, it means to dip in to adipose tissue including the fatty tissue in your breast to get you adequate energy, your boobs could shrink a little bit.  So, what would be the things that you could do, well for example, you know, one of the things that burns really clean that you could do before like a big morning run that will give your body its own fats to burn so that you don’t have to burn your booby fats, that would be something like bulletproof coffee.  You know like MCT oil, coconut oil, maybe a little bit of coconut milk, that type of thing.  Burns clean, gives you some fats that you can rely upon and you don’t have to dip into fatty tissue.  Of course, that also means you’re not gonna be dipping into fat tissue when waistline or your hips or anywhere else if you’re running to lose weight, not a good strategy, but if you’re just running to become a good runner, and you want to maintain the size of your boobs then that would be one strategy.  If you don’t like the whole bulletproof coffee approach, you could still do like a tablespoon of coconut oil with some almond butter and maybe some cinnamon or sea salt.  Something that gives you a good bolus of fat that doesn’t necessarily have to spike your blood sugar level or your insulin levels.  So, those are some considerations and just to put a little personal spin on this, I remember the very first triathlon that I did after I was getting out of  being a body builder, and my most distinct memory from that race was getting about 1k into the 10k.  This was an Olympic distance triathlon and my boobs hurt so much because I have these giant body building chest and my boobs were bouncing up and down with each step.  And that’s one of the few times in my life during exercise that I’d wish that I had a sports bra.  So, I’m right there with you.  I can empathize with you ladies, for everything from childbirth to boob size.  Ben Greenfield is here.

Cathy:               Hello Ben and Brock!  This is Cathy again from Portland, Oregon.  I have a quick question for you today about salt.  I hear you talk a lot about Himalayan salt and I totally get that but lately I’ve heard some theories about the pink salts like the Himalayan salts, and you should actually avoid that because the reason it’s pink, is due to a high iron content which is oxidized.  So, I don’t know, you know, there’s some theories about that floating around the internet but not sure how accurate that is.  Just wanted to get your take on it if you have any thoughts.  As always, thanks so much for an awesome podcast!

Brock:               So, oxidized iron.

Ben:                   Uhmm, oxidized iron.  So…

Brock:               I think I have some pink socks that I think have some oxidized iron in them.

Ben:                   Yeah, exactly.  You know, oxidized iron is present to a certain extent in Himalayan salts.  Based on Cathy’s question, in terms of the way that Himalayan salt is made, yeah, you do get a little bit of oxidation in the iron.  Oxidized iron is not necessarily a bad thing and obviously iron is a mineral that’s required for human life.


                           It’s at the heart of the hemoglobin molecule and that allows our blood cells to carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.  And this trace amounts of iron especially in unrefined salt, give it some color, give it some flavor, some minerals, and you know, the problem is that there is this idea behind like hemachromatosis – an increasing iron intake to a threateningly high level.  So, for example, and not that – this is like the end all for nutritional recommendations but the USDA’s recommended daily allowance, so the RDA for iron is 18 mg/day.   And iron can come in the form of like heme-based iron such as that you’d found in meats for example or non-heme based iron which is what you’d find in lentils, spinachs, tofu, whole wheat bread, and even unrefined salts that’s  non-heme kinda non-biological form of iron or like when you eat meat that has iron, that’s heme-based iron.   It’s a little bit better when it comes to increasing hemoglobin and unrefined salts for example contain this non-heme iron.  Now, non-heme iron is not absorbed in the body as efficiently as heme-based iron, so that’s one thing to consider here is that the actual iron that you’re getting from the salt is just like the iron you’ll be getting let’s say from spinach is not quite as well absorbed.  And when you look at Himalayan salt which is something that is typically singled out due to its high mineral content – that has 38-39 parts per million of iron and what that means is basically it’s about .003% iron by mass.   So one teaspoon of that salt has about 1.32% of for example that US RDA of sodium that I talked about, like the 18 mg of sodium, 1.32%.

Brock:               Not very much.

Ben:                   Yeah.  So if you ate two times the US maximum recommended amount of salt, you would be getting about the iron equivalent to what you’d get in about 3 quarters of a slice of whole wheat bread, or like a great big tablespoon of lentils, huge quantities.  So, in order to get the full US RDA of iron, you’d have to have about 76 teaspoons of Himalayan salt.  So we’re talking about very, very small amounts of iron.

Brock:               So it looks like an enormous log.

Ben:                   Yeah, we’re talking about very, very small amounts of iron, period.  So, that’s not really something to worry about.  What you should instead be worrying about is just kind of the truth behind like kosher salt and commercial sea salt in general and that is that many times it has been refined, which means that a lot of the minerals and moisture gets stripped away and a lot of times like sulfuric acid and chlorine is used to bleach the salt like if your salt is not discolored, that’s not necessarily a good thing.  It doesn’t mean it doesn’t have any iron in it, a lot of times it means it’s been bleached with things like sulfuric acid and chlorine, and there are a lot of anti-caking agents that they’ll also use like sodium ferrous cyanide and ammonium citrate, and aluminum silicate, a lot of these things that are not that healthy to be dumpin’ into your body and when you buy like the average Himalayan salt that is nice and you know, it doesn’t cake and every single grain looks like it’s identical size and sometimes it doesn’t have a lot of these like discoloration or pinkiness or redness to it, a lot of times this means it’s been bleached, it’s been refined, it’s been chlorinated, it has this anti-caking agent added to it, and it’s essentially franken food.  So, I’ve written articles about this at about what kind of salt that you should be eating.  I generally consume completely unrefined sea salt.  I use this stuff called Aztecan salt.  It’s harvested using an organic, 100% renewable process, it’s a little bit off-color, it clumps which would annoy some people but I don’t care because I know that means it hasn’t had anti-caking agents added to it.  And that’s – you know, I used to have a big bag of that in my pantry and I sprinkle that on food and then I also have a pepper grinder, and I put a bunch of it in the pepper grinder, if I want like smaller grains and I can just grind it right at the pepper grinder on to my food, and that gives me like the smaller grains of salt if I don’t want the bigger kinda caked grains ‘cause that’s caked together a little bit but I don’t mind that.  And it’s got a really, really high mineral content.  So that’s my pick for salt anyways but you don’t really have to worry that much about the iron in the Himalayan salt as much as some of the other additives.


                           So, that’s the dealio with the salt.  By the way, I have tons of iron.  I don’t know if I have told you this, Brock.  I have tons of iron and even like bacterial-based iron in my well water.  So, and apparently if anyone listened into my hair mineral analysis podcast that I did with Wendy Myers, a lot of manganese and metals as well.  And so, I’m – I’ve got quite a few treatments that I even do with my well water, for example, have you ever heard of a hydrogen peroxide filter?

Brock:               No.

Ben:                   All the water that I drink actually passes through hydrogen peroxide, and what that does is it kills iron-based bacteria and it oxidizes the iron and then after that the water all goes through this carbon converter, it’s carbon filter and that filters off all the oxidized iron and then after that it passes through a water structuring, that like restructures the water, so.

Brock:               It goes through water vortex.

Ben:                   Yeah.  If you walk in the – like mechanical room in my house, there’s like 4 giant tanks and like so the water comes out of the well, it goes through the hydrogen peroxide, it goes through the carbon filter, it goes through the water structure, so it’s quite a process but you know, in the case of like my well water, we’re talking about levels of iron that are literally hundreds and hundreds of times higher than what you get in Himalayan salt, so.

Dan:                  Hey Ben and Brock!  It’s Dan in Connecticut.  I’m wondering what would Ben do if you had to drive a thousand miles in a car?  I have to take a trip pretty soon and I’m wondering what steps would you take to minimize soreness, aches and pains, all that stuff.  I actually have Lyme disease and leaky gut, I’m gettin’ better but I still get sore quite easily.  So I’m looking to minimize that.  I’m wondering if you would take several days off prior and just do lots of stretching and yoga, or if you’d train a day before and use that as a day off, whatever you suggest, I’m all ears.  Love the podcast.  Long time listener here and keep up the great work, guys.  Have a good one.

Brock:               So a thousand miles.   What would that take like 13, 14 hours?

Ben:                   I would walk one… (singing) one thousand miles?

Brock:               One thousand miles… I would drive 5… (singing)  I guess 500…

Ben:                   I bet it’s with an accent.  It’s like… and I would walk 500 miles in the hay wood, what… (singing)

Brock:               They’re Scottish, so they don’t know what a mile is.  They’re like me.

Ben:                   Just to be the man who walks 2,000 kilometers…

Brock:               There you go.

Ben:                   With my haggis… (laughter)

Brock:               Have you ever had haggis?

Ben:                   I love it when I offend our listeners.

Brock:               Actually, that wasn’t bad.  That wasn’t all defensive..

Ben:                   Yeah, but we always get like – I’ve done like Indian accents, the Scottish accents, the Australian accents, and we always get people right in there like – that’s the last time I’m ever listening to the show.  You just offended the entire Australian population because what you did was actually a – offensive southern Australian dialect, blah, blah, blah and I’m like – oh, you’re kidding me.  Alright, segue.  What did you ask…

Brock:               What you actually did was – shoot, Gandhi.  I don’t remember what I asked you.

Ben:                   Okay.  Well anyways, this is actually a good question because like – I first of all, I freakin’ hate road trips for the reason that a, I don’t like to sit for long period of time, and b, it’s like, I love like nature and scenery, and all that jazz like maybe 5 miles and then I’m bored.  And I’ve seen enough of it like you can show me the stretching wild prairie of Montana and huge thumbs up, right?  Like show it to me, we’ll drive a few miles and I’ll see it and that’s really cool but then ones you’re like 4 hours into Montana, and you’re one eighth of the way across the state, you’re just like – I’m gonna freakin’ like – stick a revolver on my mouth if I have to look at another mile of barren prairie.

Brock:               Yeah, well, there’s that and there’s also driving on the interstate highways where all you see is like the concrete, concrete, concrete, McDonalds, Arbee’s, concrete, concrete, gas station… Starbucks.

Ben:                   Exactly, exactly.  So, first of all – I’ll talk about strategy you could do when you’re in the car, like let’s say, you can’t get out of the car and you’re gonna be sitting in there.  I’ll talk about some of the strategy you can do and strategies that I use if I know I am gonna be stuck in a car.  But the other thing is – assuming that you wear good compression gear, which is gonna help keep you from getting blood clots, I’m a huge fan of doing a killer workout before a long road trip or before say, like a long airplane ride.  Like before my last 14 and a half hour flight to Dubai, I did – you’ve done this one before, Brock.  I did the hardest workout in the world, right?

Brock:               It’s two and a half hours.

Ben:                   It’s the one that’s adapted… It’s adapted from the Esquire Magazine article and I – should I put a link to it in the show notes?


Brock:               Sure!

Ben:                   ‘Cause I did my own spin on it ‘cause the one thing I didn’t like about the hardest workout in the world, this is gonna sound really dumb but I didn’t like how much sitting  that was involved with the hardest workout in the world.  ‘Cause there’s a lot of sitting, there’s a lot of weight machines, I’m like – I wanna be able to do this in my basement with a set of dumbbells.  So anyways, the hardest workout in the world takes you anywhere from 2-3 hours to do, where you can split it up to a few different portions throughout the day ‘cause it’s like 16 different stations, but like – that’s my standby.  If I know I’m gonna be stuck on like an airplane or on a road trip, I’ll skip some of my work, like I’ll skip some of the articles I have to write, etc. for doing when I’m in the car or when I’m on the airplane and I’ll instead take that time and just smash myself.  And typically I’ll choose like eccentric-based activities that I know will take some serious recovery, so not like swimming or cycling but usually like running or weight training.  And I’ll keep my fingers crossed that the pros of the workout outweigh your potential risks of getting a blood clot and (I’ll do that) and then I’ll use some of the other strategy about that we’ve talked about again to reduce the risk of a blood clot but to also keep myself kinda active metabolically during the trip.  One thing is that, yes I do use electrical muscle stimulation.  Now there are kind of two types of electrical muscle stimulation.  There’s the type that grabs a lot of muscle fibers all at once, engages you in a really significant muscle contraction that can even leave you sore the next day.  I mean, that’s really good for training strength and power, and endurance and it’s not necessarily like therapeutic, recover physical therapy type of electrical muscle stimulation but it is really good for keeping your muscles fit and that would be the type of electrical muscle stimulation you’d find with like this unit called the Compex, the Compex.  And this is one that literally, like you could put it on your quads and your hamstrings and be getting the equivalent of doing  barbell or squats while you’re sitting in your car on a road trip.  That would be in contrast to something like say, the Marcpro.  And I own both the Compex and a Marcpro, but the Marcpro is better for recovery, right, like it’s – it’s therapeutic, it feels nice but it’s not gonna like building or stimulate you to a huge extent metabolically when you compare it to something like the Compex.  So, if I had to choose like one electrical muscle stimulation and I wasn’t gonna buy like, you know, Dave Asprey’s one that he promotes which is like the $12,000, what’s it called – the ERP Wave, which is really a nice unit but it costs a lot and it’s got this huge car battery size unit that’s got – you gotta drag around with it.  The Compex is pretty good.  So, I take that on airplanes, and on car trips.  You can put it on your abs, quads, hamstrings, calves, wherever.

Brock:               Does it have an outlet so you can plug it into the cigarette lighter in your car?

Ben:                   No, it’s ah – you don’t have to plugged it in.

Brock:               Ohh!  Even better!

Ben:                   Yeah, just runs on its own assuming you charge it.  It will go for hours.  So yeah, even though you need to recharge it, you could plug it in to your car battery.

                           The next thing is – I use a PowerLung.  For example, like if I gotta fly down to LA and I know I’m gonna be stuck in like 2 hours in highway traffic, I’ll bring one of these PowerLung resisted breath training devices along with me and I’ll play a game.  So, for example, every time I’ll get to a mile mark, I will do 10 sets of 3 seconds in, 3 seconds out resisted breath training, and it’s just kind of like a way to keep yourself occupied, right?  Like you have it in your glove box, or have next to you, or in your bag or whatever, you just take it every time you pass a mile marker, or every time you pass, say an overpass or something like that, or every time you pass a red car or you can turn it a little bit of a game like fartlek style resisted breath training, or it’s kinda like randomized.  That’s the way that I do it vs. like doing a half hour lung set with the PowerLung.  I’ll just bring it out every now and again.  And you’ll probably wanna make sure that you’re not sitting beside a police officer when using your PowerLung, because they’ll probably think that you’re checking your breath alcohol levels.  Not a good thing to be caught doing.  So anyways though, the PowerLung is another thing that you can keep in your car.  Then the last thing would be a combination of compression, right, to limit the potential for blood clots but then also cold thermogenesis.  So I like the 110% compression gear which is a company that makes compression gear that you can put ice sleeves into.  So the gear comes with these little ice packs that you freeze in, you put the sleeves in and this allows you to get all the benefits of building the brown fat that we talked about earlier while keeping your body cold while reducing risk of blood clots, and you can wear that say like – for  during the first hour of your road trip and then if you have to get a stop, stay in a hotel or whatever, you could re-freeze the packs and use those again and it’s a great way to basically get all the calorie burning benefits of cold thermogenesis, and the ice packs are not big and clunky and hard to sit on as you would imagine.


                           They’re just this little kind of – you get them and they’re very like paper thin and you put them in a freezer after you soak them in water and they’re not like – it does not feel like you’re sitting on a bunch of ice cubes basically or frozen peas for that matter.

Brock:               They’re like little frozen pillows.

Ben:                   Or carrots or broccoli, whatever your frozen vegetable of choice is.

Brock:               Ohh!  Actually speaking of that, you could keep your sandwiches nice and fresh if you kept it in your compression gear with the ice packs.

Ben:                   You could!  You could put the ice packs in there and tuck them next to your thighs and put your sandwiches in next to your legs.  That would work really well.  Yeah, good idea, Brock!

Brock:               I’m a genius.

Ben:                   Leftovers, fish, whatever, stuff it all in there.  So anyways, we actually do have – we’ve got discounts on like the electrical stimulation units, we’ve got discounts on the PowerLung, discounts on the compression gear, etc.  I’ll put all that stuff in the show notes.  So if you go to – like we even have like a 25% discount on the PowerLung.

Brock:               I might have to use that.  I broke my PowerLung the other day.

Ben:                   Really?

Brock:               Yeah, while shooting it at my mouth, I was trying to see how hard I could set the setting for the exhale and it actually like – I was pushing so hard, it shot in my mouth and hit the wall and cracked.

Ben:                   You need to work on your lip muscle control.

Brock:               I – yeah, apparently my lungs are stronger than my lips.

Ben:                   You’ll never be a professional trombonist or saxophonist. (saxophone sound)  Hey, let’s – let’s go ahead and move on.

Brock:               Yes, please.

Ben:                   So, like we mentioned a few minutes ago, and again all the links.  What I was saying is all the links are at before I was so rudely interrupted.

                           The thing is, we got a lot of flak for that vaccination podcast that we did with Stephanie Seneff like, it always surprises me how polarizing the topic of vaccinations actually is and I don’t feel bad at all about getting Stephanie on the podcast to talk about her experience with vaccines and she is a scientist, and she has studied this stuff quite a bit, and I’ll stand by having her on the podcast, I don’t feel bad about that.  But we did get freakin’ crucified on iTunes reviews and on Twitter, and on the comments and everything.  So, if you’re listening in and you can find it in the goodness of your heart, even if you do believe in vaccinations, but your boobs are getting smaller from running and I just saved you from that problem, go to the podcast in iTunes and leave your review.  Leave 5 stars, say somethin’ nice, and not only is that great karma and helps to boost the show and let other people know about it, but we also choose one review, each week.  And if you hear us read your review on the show, just email [email protected] with your t-shirt size, and I will stick in the mail for you a handy dandy Ben Greenfield fitness t-shirt, a BPA-free water bottle, a sweet beanie, all that stuff.  You can check it out at  So now is the time of the show when Brock reads our favorite review of the week.

Brock:               Uhmm, and this one comes from Emdee568…

Ben:                   Uhmm, great name.

Brock:               I have no idea if that’s a man or a woman, it doesn’t really matter I suppose.  Maybe it’ll become clear as we go.  But it goes like this – “Oh my husband teases me”, there we go, it came clear immediately.

Ben:                   There we go – possibly.

Brock:               “My husband teases me…” well, yeah, that’s true, it depends on what state.  “My husband teases me about how much I love to listen to other men.  I start off every morning possible with Ben Greenfield fitness podcast and a cup of coffee while I play with my dogs.”  Sad euphemism. Oh man, we shouldn’t have started the show off by talking about breasts.  “This podcast has the most applicable information and allows me to constantly make small changes to my lifestyle.  This is quickly become my favorite podcast because it’s speaks to both the hardcore athlete and the fitness and wellness lover who just wants to optimize life.  Can’t thank you enough for the wealth and information.  On a side note, the beginning and ending sound tracks are terrifying when I drive and listen to the podcast with headphones.  Every time the sound makes my heart jump as I think something terrible has just happened to my car.”

Ben:                   She apparently doesn’t like the phone sex girl who we hired to record the intro.

Brock:               Maybe.  Is that the terrifying part?

Ben:                   Welcome to the Ben Greenfield fit… I’ve always thought about that like it – it’s not meant to sound like sex in itself the lady readin’ the intro or the outro, but sometimes you know, while I’m listening to it, I occasionally cringe and I wonder if we should just get something that’s a little bit more, I don’t know, PC or maybe like, some kind of like a – an in between voice, where you can’t tell if it’s a man or a woman…


Brock:               Remember years ago I made a demo intro that actually had a computer voice.  Maybe that’s what we need to do.  It was like a robot voice when – welcome to Ben Greenfield fitness podcast.

Ben:                   Who wants to play with their dogs while listening to a robot voice?

Brock:               Everyone.

Ben:                   Alright.  We better end things there so, thanks for listening in, and also in the 8275 whatever you were, email [email protected] your t-shirt size, we’ll get a pack out to you, and you can access all of the links in the show notes for this episode for everything from the article on whether running will kill you, to the obstacle dominator giveaway, to the New Media Expo, to Paleo FX, all that jazz at  Tune in this weekend for a special episode on Why Strong People Are Hard To Kill and until next time.

Brock:               I think we said that last week too and then we pull deals, switch reviews.  So this time, for sure…

Ben:                   That’s because- well, we did that ‘cause the measles thing.  I’d figure it’d be better to just talk about vaccination sooner rather than later.

Brock:               ‘Cause Disney World is banning everyone.

Ben:                   That’s right.  But this weekend we do promise an episode on Why Getting Stronger Will Make You Harder To Kill.  So, until then, later.

                           Visit for even more cutting edge fitness, nutrition, and performance advice.

[1:02:11.9]      END






































#308: Can Running Too Much Kill You (Or Make Your Boobs Smaller)?, Fexaramine For Fat Loss, Staying Fit During Long Road Trips And More!

Aroung the Bay 30k. Grim Reaper, Hamilton Ontario

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

Feb 11, 2015 Podcast: Fexaramine For Fat Loss, Can Running Make Your Boobs Smaller, Does Himalayan Salt Have Dangerous Amounts of Oxidized Iron, and Staying Fit During Long Road Trips.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, call 1-877-209-9439, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form… but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


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Obstacle Dominator Giveaway! Win the craziest, most amazing and challenging blend of workouts, fueling, and training and racing advice Ben Greenfield and Hunter McIntyre have ever created at the Obstacle Dominator Giveaway (

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 13-16, 2015: Ben is speaking at New Media Expo, where the world’s top bloggers, podcasters and content creators teach you how to make money by creating content online, and how to enhance your blog, your podcast, your videos and any other media you create online. Better yet, you can come and attend the conference, then join Ben at Spartan Vegas on April 17! Click here to register for New Media Expo and use code “bgreenfield20″ to get 20% off the current pricing.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.

May 1-3, 2015: Ben is speaking at Ari Meisel’s Less Doing Conference, the year’s top conference for learning about things like how to manage your email inbox, hack productivity, enhance your cognitive performance, learn how to use the latest and greatest phone apps and productivity software, free up as much time as possible, and much more! Click here to get more details and to book a free productivity call with Ari.

The Ben Greenfield Experience is now available for either May 15-17 weekend or May 22-24 weekend (you choose): This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for you to be completely immersed in Ben’s unique combination of healthy, ancestral living and cutting-edge biohacking. Total cost is 10K for entire weekend(Fri/Sat/Sun) – includes yoga, workouts, food, and the full learning and living experience. You’ll leave completely equipped with everything you need to know to reinvent your home, your body and your life.

The entire experience takes place at the Greenfield home in the forest, which is completely biohacked to support optimum human biology, including 100% organic and green experience with zero electrical pollution, allergen-free materials, natural mattresses, circadian rhythm matched lighting and much more – including:

-Outdoor obstacle course on 10 acres of forest, with nature walking trails, climbing wall, rope traverses, spear throws, sandbag carries, Tarzan swing, monkey bars, mountain bikes, woodchopping and everything you need for the ultimate outdoor fitness experience.

-Completely outfitted gym with power lifting rack, indoor swim trainer, hypoxic air generator, bike trainer, elevation training mask, luxury Tru-Form running treadmill, outdoor yoga patio and much more.

-Cold thermogenesis endless swimming pool with chlorine-free, naturally ozone-treated hot tub for a one-of-a-kind outdoor, winter forest swimming and soaking body treatment.

-Plenty of biohacks to play with, including a recovery-enhancing Biomat, infrared lighting, electrostimulation, inversion table, power lung, and ore.

-Locally-sourced, natural and nourishing food from over a dozen nearby organic farms and Ben’s goats, chickens, organic vegetable garden, along with filtered, structured and deeply hydrating well water.

-Giant living room with wood burning stove and enormous oak table for learning, socializing, working, eating and relaxing.

-Outdoor obstacle course workouts, hiking excursions, yoga and high performance living led by America’s top personal trainer.

E-mail ben at if you are interested, and Ben will set up a private phone call with you to discuss details and your eligibility.

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

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



Listener Q&A:

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

Fexaramine For Fat Loss

Sebastian says: He has been reading about this miracle weight loss pill called Fexaramine. He is curious what you think about it. He doesn’t want to take it (he is not overweight) but he would like to know more about it.

In my response I recommend:
Fang S, Suh JM, Reilly SM, Yu E, Osborn O, Lackey D et al. (January 2015). “Intestinal FXR agonism promotes adipose tissue browning and reduces obesity and insulin resistance”. Nat. Med. doi:10.1038/nm.3760. PMID 25559344.

Can Running Make Your Boobs Smaller?

Alexander says: His girlfriend wants to increase her running and aerobic exercise volume but is worried that her “really sexy boobs will start to decline.” What are you suggestions to help solve this problem?

Does Himalayan Salt Have Dangerous Amounts of Oxidized Iron?

Cathy says: She knows you are a big fan of eating mineral rich salt and she ‘gets that’ but lately she has been hearing that the Himalayan salt is coloured pink because it contains iron that is oxidized. Wouldn’t that make it unhealthy? How accurate is that?

In my response I recommend:
-Aztecan Salt

Staying Fit During Long Road Trips

Dan says: He wants to know what you, Ben, would do if you had to drive 1000 miles in a car. He has to take a trip soon and wants to know how to minimize soreness, aches and pains and all that stuff. Would you take several days off prior to the trip and do a bunch of stretching and yoga or would you train hard the day before and call the trip a rest day? Side note: he has Lyme Disease and Leaky Gut. He is getting better but not there yet.

In my response I recommend:
-Compex or MarcPro ($32 discount at with discount code “Ben”)
-PowerLung (use code BGF025 for 25% discount)
-110% Compression Gear (use 10% discount code GREENFIELD)
-Hardest Workout In The World


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


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The Shocking Truth About Vaccinations: Everything You Need To Know About Vaccines And Your Health.


In Podcast #305, I broached the controversial topic of vaccines by discussing alternative vaccination schedules. That set off a firestorm of discussion on the Facebook page and my Twitter feed, so in today’s episode I’ve decided to revisit the topic, and you’re about to take a deep dive into the world of vaccines, learn the shocking truth about vaccinations, and get everything you need to know to make an educated choice about vaccines.

My guest on today’s show is Stephanie Seneff, who is a Senior Research Scientist at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. For over three decades, her research interests have always been at the intersection of biology and computation: developing a computational model for the human auditory system, understanding human language so as to develop algorithms and systems for human computer interactions, as well as applying natural language processing (NLP) techniques to gene predictions.

But in recent years, Dr. Seneff has focused her research interests back towards biology. She is concentrating mainly on the relationship between nutrition and health. Since 2011, she has written over a dozen papers (7 as first author) in various medical and health-related journals on topics such as modern day diseases (e.g., Alzheimer, autism, cardiovascular diseases), analysis and search of databases of drug side effects using NLP techniques, and the impact of nutritional deficiencies and environmental toxins on human health.

-How the history of vaccinations is much, much different than what we’ve been led to believe…

-Why kids actually need to get measles, mumps and rubella…

-How vaccines can cause a sulfate deficiency and why that’s a problem…

-The truth about the Andrew Wakefield, vaccines and autism scandal…

-Why mercury and aluminum aren’t really a problem when it comes to MMR vaccines, and what really is the problem…

-What you need to know about ingredients like thimerosal and formaldehyde…

-Alternatives to vaccines for yourself, for children and for babies…

Resources from this episode:

-Suzanne Humphries – Dissolving Illusions: Disease, Vaccines, and The Forgotten History (book)

-List of foods that contain glyphosate, including corn, soy, canola and sugar beets (article)

-VAERs database of adverse reactions to vaccinates (website)

Do you have questions, comments or feedback about vaccines? Leave your thoughts below, and either Stephanie or I will reply.

Episode #307 – Full Transcript

Podcast #307 from 


Introduction: In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Is MCT Oil A Scam, How To Measure Your Neurotransmitters, Downhill Running Tips, Is Kratom A Healthy Sleep Aid, Why Weightlifting Shoes Have An Elevated Heel, What It Means If Just One Of Your Armpits Smell, and much more.

Welcome to the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast.  We provide you with everything you need to know for total performance, fat loss, recovery, digestion, sleep, brain, and hormone optimization.  So whether you’re an ironman triathlete or you just want to shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from

Brock:               So Ben, are your arms tired?

Ben:                   (chuckles)  Are my arms tired?

Brock:               Yeah, ‘cause you just flew in from Dubai!

Ben:                   Hahaha…  You’re funny.

Brock:               Hahaha!  No, it’s a dead joke, isn’t it?

Ben:                   I’m picking lemongrass out of my teeth right now. I was in a rush, and I literally did just fly in from Dubai… Well, I guess about fourteen hours ago late last night. And I’ll talk about some of the things that I do to manage jet lag after uhm…

Brock:               One of them being is jamming lemon grass from your teeth…

Ben:                   That was a fourteen and a half hour flight.  I’m drinking this tea though that’s got a lot of, um, it’s basically turmeric based tea, but it’s got other things like cinnamon, and lemon grass, gotu kola, and it’s called Ultimate Endurance Tea.  It’s a – one of my buddy’s gave it to me.  It’s by – it comes at Hawaii, Hawaii Pharmacy.  Hawaii, Kailua?  I’m so horrible with my pronunciations.  Anyways, it’s an herbal tea, and it’s really, really good after you fly to get natural anti-inflammatories like that into your system because after a fourteen and a half hour of flight, not only do you – and this is the equation, for every hour of flying; it is a good day to re-orient your body in terms of circadian rhythm and time zone, so it’s literally two weeks after a fourteen hour flight that it takes your body to completely bounce back.  It’s crazy.

Brock:               Really?  I thought it was a day, per hour of time zone shift.

Ben:                   Well, what I heard from Dr. Kirk Parsley at the Unbeatable Mind… I  don’t know if you’re listening to his…

Brock:               Unfairly I wasn’t paying attention but I was there…

Ben:                  I could’ve or he could’ve been mistaken, but what I understand is that it’s an hour for everyday and it might be an hour for every time zone, which means that it’d be closer to twelve hours instead of or twelve days instead of or fourteen days in this case.

Brock:               Yeah, in that case it’s not much different.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.  Anyways though, so I do a lot of little things to mitigate jet lag.  I tried out some new things, and some old standbys on this particular trip; for example, one of the things that I tried was not eating for the last ten hours of the flight.  Normally, I will at least have some, you know, like some Brazil nuts, or like a – a good fat-based energy bar or something other than airplane food but this time I just didn’t eat.  And what I instead did was I walked to the back of the airplane and asked the flight attendant for two waters, since she takes up little cups of water and I’m like no, I mean like two waters, like the giant litter-sized bottles of water that they have in the back.  And she said, “Well, technically I can’t give those to you.” And I’m like, “I won’t tell anybody, I promise.”  So she gave me the two giant bottles of water and I just went back and I tucked those under my seat, and went through a couple of those and several other waters during the flight.  So I fasted, so I didn’t generate a lot of free radicals from digestion ‘cause you’re body’s already, you know, jammed with free radicals from the flight itself.  Another few things that I tried was when I got home, just like I’m drinking the turmeric -based tea, now I had a high sulfur and turmeric-based meal afterwards, like sulfuric, like stinky vegetables; garlic, and broccoli and cauliflower, turmeric, cumin, curry, stuff like that.  That’s really, really good after you fly.  So I had this Mediterranean chicken, which was basically chicken with curry, garlic, ginger, made that with some coconut oil, but basically, a very sulfurous rich meal, and that was in addition to using some of the glutathione, you know, the glutathione that you put underneath your tongue, that taste like dog farts…

Brock:               Yeah, the stuff that tastes like a – taste like a perm   solution  from the   1980s…

Ben:                   Perm solution/liquid dog farts, yeah.  It’s not tasty, but that also is very  high  sulfurous…  and  you  are  not kissable  after you  use that  stuff  I should add… So I am actually a fan to oxytocin.


Jack Kruse talked about this when I interviewed Jack Kruse for one of the summits that I did.  My  Rev Yourself Summit at   We did an hour on jetlag, and one of the things that he talked about was oxytocin.  And so,  I don’t want to turn this into an R-rated podcast, but sex after you fly is actually a good idea because you get a huge surge of oxytocin and that has some really good anti-inflammatory effects. However…

Brock:               You can get that from just from  snuggling.  You  don’t  have  to  be  like down and dirty.

Ben:                   You can, but I like the latter.  So, just make sure if you use the glutathione that you have a strong breath mint afterwards, that’s what I am getting at.  So, fast on the plane, did a lot like the sulfur and turmeric –based antioxidants along with the turmeric tea this morning.  Then a couple other things that I did was I smoked melatonin, so I used one of the e-cigarettes with the vapor-melatonin that you can get from Vaporboost.  And I use this stuff called Sweet Dreams, so you put a few drops in the e-cigarette and you vaporize Melatonin just like you would, you know, a weed or something like that.  And it’s like mainlining Melatonin which is really good for resetting the circadian rhythm sort of that…

Brock:               So that’s serving the heck of it of your mote skin…

Ben:                   So smoke Melatonin  after  sex…  which  was  great…  and  then  an  earth pulse… So this is getting into like the more expensive, kind of biohacky, nerdy, kind of stuff but earth pulse is a… It’s a Pulse Electromagnetic frequency device, PEMF; and what it does is it dumps a bunch of negative ions into your body.  So you will have a bunch of positive ions when you’re on the flight and just like grounding or like being outside in your bare feet with built up bunch of negative ions soaked in this Pulse Electromagnetic Field Therapy, so you basically just put it underneath your mattress.  I don’t use it every night but I used it for the first two to three nights after I travel and I put it in, it’s got a few different modes, like sleep mode, recovery mode, etcetera, and recovery mode is the most powerful so I just jacked that thing up in recovery mode and did that. And then the last thing is I just walked in the door and made my tea and came down here in my office to podcast with you, Brock as I did a little bit of Yoga outside.  And that is for the same reason that I used the earth pulse, right, to get the grounding or the earthing effect.  But because it’s very cold outside and there’s like snow and ice, the problem’s if you’re wearing shoes, the rubber soles stop a lot of the transmission of the electrons from the earth.  I know that our listeners are slowly fading as we’re delving deeper and deeper into that biohacking geekiness.  But all you do is if it’s cold that you wear wool socks; those transmit really, really well.  So, I just did that to me outside – wool socks, tossed those bad boys to the laundry, and here I am.

Brock:               Nice.  You know, I used to travel like twice a week when I was a web developer, and I’d be flying all over the place.  It was a ridiculous amount of time, and I used in my protocol, was before I got on the plane, I drink several beers, eat a really gross meal in the airport, and then anytime the stewardess came by and offered me anything the answer was yes.

Ben:                   Especially free booze.

Brock:               Uhmm, and that worked horribly.

News Flashes:

Brock:                As usual, is rippin’ up the joint with all kinds of cool studies and news flashes and fun stuff.

Ben:                   News flashes!

Brock:               And fun stuff.

Ben:                   Yeah, and so I have of course been tweeting studies while I’ve been gallivanting about Dubai, and a few things that I put out this week is – the first is something that I’ve been doing for a long time with the hunch that it would probably help somehow with my dry land performance and that would be swimming with limited breathing, right, like doing underwater breathing or doing free style swimming where instead of breathing every stroke, or every two strokes you’re breathing every seven strokes or ten strokes.  Basically teaching yourself of how to move and conserve oxygen simultaneously.  And they just came out with a really interesting study.  This one was in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science, and of course it wasn’t Scandinavia and I’m sure that they were swimming in cold water with sharks or something like… yes, anyways, what they looked at was limited breath frequency during swimming.  And whether the way that that kind of stresses and causes the respiratory system to become stronger, would actually make the subjects in their study better runners like improve their running economy.  And sure enough when they compared a swimming group that took two breaths per stroke, what they called controlled-frequency breathing vs. a group that took every seven strokes they took a breath – like every two strokes vs. every second, every seven strokes.  What they found was the limited breathing subjects improved their running economy significantly, and also improved what’s called their forced vital capacity or their oxygen capacity.


So, what this means is that if you’re a runner and you wanna do like a cross-training session or even a triathlete or something like that, and you want to cross-training session, it would behoove you to actually do some limited frequency breathing – some hypoxic type of swim sets.  So, you know, I’ve written about that in my book before and it was a little bit like blue sky like you, yeah, this is gonna help with your tolerance to hypoxia.  It’s probably help you mentally but you know, up until this point there’s no research that actually improves running economy and it turns out that it does.  So, kind of a cool thing now.

Brock:                           That’s hormesis in action!

Ben:                   Hormesis in action, kids.  The next thing and I promise when I tweeted this, I talked about on the show so I’m going to.  It is a post about MCT oil.  It’s called MCT oil vs. coconut oil: The Truth Exposed.  And somebody…

Brock:                           Ah, what is the truth?

Ben:                   You know about this article that I guess this is really true, because obviously the world’s health is imbalance based off of the answer to this question.

Brock:               Yes!  We cannot continue with eating anything until we know.

Ben:                   What this article gets into is that there are all these different what are called medium-chained fatty acids that you’re gonna find in nature.  C6 which is called caproic acid and C8 – caprylic acid, and C10 which is capric acid and C12 which is lauric acid, and most of the names of these are – especially the C6 through the C10 – the names were taken from the word capra which means goat incidentally.

Brock:               Hmm, I didn’t know that.

Ben:                   So, they’re goat fatty acids.  So anyways, the most predominant MCT that you’re gonna find in coconut oil according to this article mix is lauric acid.  Coconut oil is about 50% lauric acid, and lauric acid is the part of the coconut oil that is a really powerful anti-microbial agent, right, it’s the thing that you do everything from like an Ayurvetic medicine, you do like teeth swishing with coconut oil to clean your teeth and then you spit out the coconut oil or you’d use it as like – we’re gonna talk about armpit smelling in this episode and coconut oil is really, really good as like a natural anti-deodorant because of that anti-microbial action in the arms.  And what they say in the article is that MCT oil is generally only contain the capra fatty acids, right, the caprylic acid or the caproic acid or the capric acid and that they don’t really contain the lauric acid which is kinda like the star component in coconut oil.  And so the conclusion of the article was that even though MCT oil has been marketed as liquid coconut oil and it’s really potent, healthy extract of coconut oil, the fact is that you don’t get any of the anti-microbial benefits of coconut oil.  Period, point made – MCT oil.  No good compared to coconut oil.

Brock:               Booo!

Ben:                   Yeah, but what they fail to taken to account in the article is that most of the time when you’re looking at everything from like bulletproof coffee to the use of like MCTs for sports performance enhancement when you add them to your sports performance beverage.  The idea is that the reason that you use this is because they’re readily converted into ketone bodies and they get you into this state of ketosis which was also improvement in cognitive function and focus, and sure I’ll admit that when you take an MCT oil, you don’t get some of the side health benefits of coconut oil but you do get a more targeted and concentrated delivery of these C8 and C10 fatty acids which help you out from the cognitive standpoint.  So, it’s all imbalance and of course the article itself is written by some folks who own a coconut farm and produce virgin coconut oil.

Brock:               Shocking!

Ben:                   Yeah, so just goes to show, you know, be careful just because a food component does not contain like a liquid food component derived in the factory like MCT oil, just because it doesn’t contain a lot of the benefits of its original food source does not mean it doesn’t have side benefits because it’s concentrated.

Brock:               Yeah, and it really depends on what you’re after in this case. Like when I have MCT oil, I’m definitely after that cognitive function when I put it in my breakfast I just feel like my brain is just humming along for hours afterwards and I’m not worried about getting a whole bunch of antimicrobials.

Ben:                   Yeah, so the question is, do you want to enhance cognitive performance or do you want to avoid smelly armpits.  Choose your poison wisely.

Brock:               Why must I choose?

Ben:                   Pick your poison – I think it goes.  Anyways, the last thing that I wanted to mention, the last couple of things, the first was – a really interesting re-examination of data from what’s called The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.  The NANES survey, and what this looked out was – what proportion of the adult population has inadequate intake of things like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, all of the….


Brock:               Oh, I’m gonna guess… hundred percent.

Ben:                   … at shockingly high proportion.  More than two thirds of the US population is deficient in most of the micronutrients and the vitamins that I just mentioned.  And almost all of them are deficient in A, C, D, E, calcium, and magnesium.

Brock:               Hmm, surprised by calcium.  That’s the only one in that list that I’m surprise with.

Ben:                   Yeah, and we’ve talked about this on the show before – calcium is well 50% deficiencies.

Brock:               Wow!

Ben:                   We’ve talked about this on the show before and oh!  And by the way, vitamin D and vitamin E, the fat-soluble vitamins in our food pyramid esque culture, up to 90% deficiencies in those.

Brock:               Yeah.  I’m not surprise by that.

Ben:                   And that’s just below the estimated average requirement for the absence of disease.  You know, we’re not – so they talked about going from good to great, we’re talking about going from non-disease to…

Brock:               From optimum performances, not dying.

Ben:                   Yeah.  So obviously a big part of this is that you know, our soil sucks because we aren’t turning over the soil the way that we would have been like in more ancestral farming environment.  Part of it is pesticides and herbicides, part of it is unhealthy leaky gut, so lack of absorption but ultimately what this comes down to is, it could be important to go out of your way to add these via like a vitamin or supplement based source.  And these goes to show you that sometimes you can’t get everything that you need from food especially if you’re eating a crappy diet.  And the way that I say things is if you eat a really healthy whole foods, ancestral-based diets, you’re the average gel about you’re lifting a little bit moving, sprinting, you’re probably good to go.  But if you are doing things like Spartan races, and ironman triathlons and asking your body to go above and beyond what would be considered like normal ancestral activity, you’re probably going to be in that boat where you need some extra nutrient support.  So, the data from that study though was just shocking in terms of how many are deficient in these things.

Brock:               Yeah, wow.

Ben:                   So, and oh! And then the last thing, speaking of nutrient-dense foods, is hummus – I just push the 20 minute video that my wife shot when we’re in Israel of what the inside of a hummus factory looks like, and I thought that it’s just be like this nasty type of thing where they were taking chickpeas and you know, taking chickpeas which are a legume that can wreak havoc on the digestive system early and broadening them up and turning them to hummus.  But actually they have these enormous like soaking chambers, and rinsing chambers, and they’re heating and boiling, and deactivating all the digestive enzymes inhibitors, and I understood all these at the factory and then it was very, very clean, pristine, mechanical-like environment but at the same time they’re using a lot of ancestral food preparation methods when it came to chickpeas,  and this was the Strauss Hummus Factory which is a kinda big hummus brand.  So, apparently not all big food companies are evil, so anyways though, it’s actually an interesting video.  It’s like a big Dr. Seuss factory for hummus.  So, check it out if you’re interested in hummus, or humus, or how do you wanna say it.  I should eat plenty this week in Dubai and so it’s tasty stuff, I certainly like it a little bit of hummus.

Brock:               I make hummus the old fashion way.  I put it in a big vat and then stamp on it with bare feet.

Ben:                   Uhmm, yeah.  It’s like wine, I like it.  It’s a good workout too.  Anyways though, is where you can get access to everything that we just talked about including that video.

Special Announcements:

Brock:               And today’s podcast is brought to you by  One of the best places to get audio books for man for years and years going back to like the CD days.

Ben:                   Yeah.  Is it or

Brock:               Ohh, I think…

Ben:                   I don’t, I don’t remember.  We’ll put a link in the show notes.

Brock:               I think it’s audiblepodcast.

Ben:                   I think it might be

Brock:               You tell the people what’s going on, I’m gonna test it.

Ben:                   If you type in when you get home from or where you are gallivanting about listening to this episode, you’ll – what should pop up is that you get a free audio book.  So you get to choose from 150,000+ titles, you get to download it instantly and so the next time that you’re out riding your bike, you can listen to Shades of Grey or whatever it is that you would like to partake in.

Brock:               Just as I did, it is

Ben:                   I’m so glad we have quality control.  So one book, I wanted to highlight that you may enjoy – it was actually written by one of my friends, Ari Meisel.  It’s called Less Doing, More Living.  Actually it’s a good book.  I have the physical paper version of the book, the “real” old school version.  And this is a – it seems probably short, it’s a two hour and twenty five minute book.  Something you could read during your next or listen to during your next swim or bike ride, for all of you overtraining aerobic athletes out there.


Brock:               I remember last time I did it two hour…

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.  I actually listen to a lot of audio books and podcasts when I’m flying.  So anyways though, it’s called Less Doing, More Living, make everything in life easier and it’s about everything from like getting through your email inbox faster to streaming lining how quickly it takes you to run errands, by outsourcing that to like Virtual Assistant, to how to get a Virtual Assistant… uhm, enhance your cognitive performance…

Brock:               If you have a Virtual Assistant getting your groceries, you end up with virtual groceries?

Ben:                   Uhmm, possibly yes.  Also phone apps and productivity software like how to use the latest and greatest phone apps and all the different things out there from like remember the milk to like what…. Like Evernote, all these different ways to free up as much time as possible.  So, it’s pretty cool and it’s actually – this is relevant because Ari also has a conference and I’m speaking at it.  For those of you in or wanting to be in or near New York, May 1st through the 3rd.  It’s called Ari and myself – Less Doing Conference.  So, our URL to share that is and the reason that that’s an important URL to visit if you wanna go to Ari’s conference or even if you don’t wanna go to his conference, you can go to and you get a free productivity call with Ari which is the author of that book, which is in my opinion a slammin’ deal.  So, check that out.  There you go.

Brock:               So you actually get to talk to him?

Ben:                   Yeah, if you go to – here.  Well, you know what?  It’s him or one of his coaches – one of his minions.

Brock:               That’s mine – that’s not what I meant, I just mean like you sign up and you get a free call.  That’s pretty cool.

Ben:                   I think it’s cool.  It’s worth it.  So, even if you don’t want the little conference, so check all that out.  We’ll put links to all the audible and Ari’s conference in the show notes at  And then just a few other little things: the first is March 6th through the 9th is the Spartan Cruise.  Check it out at, use code BEN10 to save 10%.  You get to go to a private island, you can either drink and stare at hot people in swimsuit jumping over walls and crawling under barbwire, or you can partake in the festivities.  It is there for adults, it’s there for kids, me, my wife.  All of our kids will be on the boat, playin’ in the sand, so I think that would be fun.

Brock:               I heard on the most recent obstacle dominator podcast that Kent Ryan and Isaiah Vidal are gonna be there too?

Ben:                   Ryan Kent, Isaiah Vidal…. Uhm, yeah, possibly.  So, ladies there you go. That’s a good reason.  Uhm, okay, another thing – the New Media Expo, for you all out there who like bloggers and podcasters, and video creators, this is gonna be pretty cool.  It’s is where you can sign up.  It’s a big expo where you learn like how to market your blog, and how to get a better podcast, and how to create just killer online videos, all that stuff, but what I think is even cooler is it’s the same week as the Spartan Vegas Race.  You could go to the conference and then finish up by destroying yourself and jumping over fire, so that’s another place that I’ll be, I’ll be speaking at that.  I’ll be speaking at the Spartan Cruise, and the last place I’ll be speaking is Paleo FX – that’s kinda like the who’s who gathering of like bestselling authors, and physicians and nutritionists, and professional athletes, and like sustainability and food activists.  You don’t have to be Paleo but it’s really cool like an awesome expert you can walk around and all the things that caveman use to eat like paleo muffins, paleo cookies, paleo cupcakes, just everything that ancient caveman used to bake.  And you can also do workouts like the caveman used to do.  They’ve got like ancient caveman cowbells and caveman like high intensity trainers with computer screens on them, and…

Brock:               It sounds pretty accurate.  I’m sure every anthropologist in the world is salivating.

Ben:                   To stimulate our ancestors.  But it’s actually a lot of fun, some really good parties to get time.  So, Paleo FX, check that out at

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Listener Q & A:

Karin:                Hi!  How do you feel about the Pharmasan Labs Urinalysis Kit for testing your transmitters?


                           I heard that it’s a scam and I ordered it from my naturopath.  Just wondering I have some low serotonin and other things, and trying to find some ways to relieve this anxiety.  Thanks!

Brock:               Yeah, I did a quick little google search when this question first came in and I got to say, it doesn’t look promising.

Ben:                   Uh oh!  The neuro…

Brock:               There seem to be the first things that pop up there like – scam, scam beware!  Do not do this!

Ben:                   We’ll just say no to this, I mean, you’re peeing and you’re collecting an overnight urine, and I believe this one also involve say saliva sample.  Alright, the idea is that you can find neurotransmitters in the urine just like you can find like hormones in the urine.  And actually saliva and urine can be good for some stuff like an adrenal stress index for example, where you’re taking a salivary measurement four times in a day to measure the amount of cortisol and DHEa you’re producing.  That’s a really, really good way to find out if you’re like in a state of adrenal fatigue or not.  You know, maybe you have something else going out like I don’t know, Lyme disease like our last podcast or another thing that is pretty decent would be like a 24-hour urine sex steroid test.  It’s a wonderful test – you walk out of this orange jug the whole day, every time you pee, you pee into the jug and this is good for seeing like a 24-hour running cycle of your hormone levels which is actually a little bit better than a single snap shot of your hormone levels.  So, it actually is – it’s pretty decent for measuring hormones, it’s pretty decent for measuring again things like cortisol and DHEA.  When it comes to neurotransmitters though, the deal with urinary testing and neurotransmitters is that theoretically you can get a view of neurotransmitters when you do urine test because neurotransmitters are not just going to hang around in your brain.  They’re not unique to your brain, and as a matter of fact like serotonin for example, a very abundant neurotransmitter in most folks, 95% of serotonin production occurs in the gut and this is why a lot of times people deal with like depression and insomnia and stuff like that, you don’t start with the brain, you start with the gut.  And the gut bacteria, and the presence of leaky gut and stuff like that, but when you look at the amounts of any given neurotransmitter wherein the urine all you’re seeing is basically what you’re peeing out when it comes to neurotransmitters, and you’re not necessarily seeing like levels that are actually available to the brain or levels that are being produced in the gut.  So…

Brock:               Yeah, so it’s sort of like doing those ketones strips, you’re not getting an accurate measurement of what’s being used for getting a measurement of what’s coming out.

Ben:                   Uhmm, yeah exactly, and Nora Gedgaudas talks about this.  She’s got a book called Primal Body, Primal Mind, and like on page 279 up to 284, she’s got like these quizzes and questionnaires that she uses to find neurotransmitter issues that – she’s a pretty good biofeedback practitioner, she finds those along with amino acid supplementation.  The use of amino acid to restore proper neurotransmitter levels to be far more reliable than say like a urinary neurotransmitter evaluation combined with neurotransmitter repletion therapy based off of this specific neurotransmitters that are shown to be deficient or imbalance in your urine.  So, what that would mean would be like for example, you would take one of this questionnaires if you’re deficient in neurotransmitters, you could start using something like essential amino acids or something like a blend of 5HTP and tyrosine is another really, really common example of an amino acid blend that tends to restore neurotransmitter activity.  And just a full spectrum of amino acids a lot of times that’s what people need like they just – they either have, since gut and brain issues are intertwine, a lot of times inadequate protein digestion, right?  Inadequate hydrochloric acid, or inadequate digestive enzymes resulting in inadequate protein digestion resulting in amino acids deficiencies, resulting in neurotransmitters deficiencies.  Or a lot of people sometimes just have too much serotonin or not enough dopamine or things along those lines.  So, the use of digestive enzymes and HCL to help with protein breakdown, they use like a full spectrum of amino acids supplement like Thorne makes one called Aminos, you’ve got Master Amino Pattern which is a capsule that has a bunch of amino acids in it.  Those kinds of things can help with neurotransmitter repletion, but ultimately testing neurotransmitters through the urine is not something that most of the better docs and medical practitioners out there are saying or that they have found to be accurate.


                           You’re only getting basically what your body is peeing out and it doesn’t really reflect what’s going on specifically in the brain which is really what you’re going after, you know, fixing when you’re testing for neurotransmitters.

Brock:               Now Karin, since you actually already purchased this and since it’s not exactly going to work the way that you hoped and when I was having anxiety problems, I did do one of the urine analysis things that Ben was talking about where you carry around a jug for 24 hours.  I didn’t actually carry it around, I kept it in the fridge but they, what they tested for…

Ben:                   I carry mine around.

Brock:               Just keep it on your hip bone.

Ben:                   Yes.

Brock:               What they did test it for was adrenaline and things like that to make sure that my body wasn’t the anxiety I was having wasn’t getting triggered by just a – like something misfiring and shooting out adrenaline all the time, so maybe your money isn’t totally wasted if you can convince your naturopath just sort of switch what they’re looking for.

Ben:                   I actually hung mine around my neck with a chain and… around that way.

Brock:               Oh, sexy.

Downhill girl:  Hey Ben and Brock, I have a training related question hoping that will help me out with my 2015 spring race season.  I’m a runner primarily and experienced my first injury last fall, an IT band issue, did some strength training and bike work and started running in mid-December.  So far, so good.  I have a couple of spring races coming up which are known for being really hilly.  I do hills but my question is – do you have any tips or suggestions or training advice on how to get super strong for hills without potentially damaging my IT band again?  Thanks so much.

Brock:               IT band issues are a bummer.

Ben:                   See, my whole philosophy on this is – find as many stairs as possible, find as many hills as possible.  Just tackle stairs like crazy.  Tackle down hills like crazy.  Eventually your IT band will just kinda rupture and after that you don’t have to worry about it anymore ‘cause it’s not there.

Brock:               ‘Cause you’re not gonna be running.

Ben:                   Yeah.

Brock:               So, there goes your marathon training!

Ben:                   I actually tried that approach once with a medial meniscus issue and I read on the internet which is a great place to do research on your injuries by the ways,  Dr. Google.  That you could like grind down a meniscal tear and I was like three weeks out from a race.  This was a few years ago, when I was kinda just like macho man mode, and so I did hill repeats just like limping through these hill repeats, slamming my leg into the ground.  Okay, I’m just grind out this medial meniscus tear whatever it is it’s kinda like rubbing on the inside of my knee, and I did like four sessions a week for a couple of weeks, and woke up one morning and my pain was completely gone.

Brock:               Hmm, and so was your meniscus?

Ben:                   I don’t know, but I’m just – that’s a total anecdote.  I do not recommend that especially for IT band ‘cause I’ve had IT band issues before and holy cow like going downhill or walking downstairs is like teeth grittingly painful.  It really sucks.  So yeah, and especially if you have a race coming up, right, where there’s gonna be lots of downhills, lots of hills in general, you gotta – you get your body ready to run downhill whether or not you have an IT band issue.  You know, this can be an issue because downhill running, there’s a huge breaking component, right, like a huge eccentric contraction that takes place that can put a lot of stress in the joints, that can result in a lot of muscle tearing and longer recovery implications for anybody who does a lot of downhill running, I mean like it is hard on your joints.  So, the deal is though, training your body during downhill or running downhill in general requires things like a high cadence because your feet are moving very quickly underneath your body ‘cause gravity is pushing you down the hill.  A high ability to kinda be able to lean forward and swing your arms properly to be able to support as you go downhill but also to be able to use gravity to push you down that hill a little bit faster and…

Brock:               Yes, you’re not resisting gravity the entire time you’re using it to your advantage a little bit?

Ben:                   Yeah, and also just staying on your toes or like avoiding heel strike.  So, some of the things you can do.  Here’s really a simple one – deep water running, and when you deep water run whether you’re training to run downhill or not, correct form.  I actually didn’t use to think that, I thought deep water running, you lean back to get your knees nice and high so you’re jacking your heart rate up but all that does is kinda teach you how to heel strike instead you wanna lean forward and drive your feet forward.  So you’re driving your knees kinda like forward, it almost like a 30-45 degree angle instead of straight up and down but deep water running, it’s like an awkward jogging bell, like an underwater mp3 player makes time go by way faster. Trust me.

Brock:               Alright.  So you’re putting yourself in more of a position like a sprinter?

Ben:                   Uhmm, yeah.  And then…

Brock:               Okay.  So that knee drive fall those through like the really like long kick behind and then knee drive is the most important part?

Ben:                   Yeah, and a really high cadence, right, like water running is really good for developing a high cadence.  Even if you don’t have access to deep water, like at my house I have a shallow pool.  I have one of these aqua fitness pools where I can run against a current and that’s only like four and a half, five feet deep but I can still focus on cadence, right?  I can focus on picking up my feet really quickly and there’s far less impact even when I’m doing that compared to doing like a sprint outside on flat ground.


                           So, water running is one thing.  Treadmill running, treadmill that set at like a 0.0% incline is not flat.  That technically simulates running downhill ‘cause you have no wind resistance, you’ve got very little friction resistance because the belt is moving and that’s a good way to work on cadence.  It’s a little bit lower impact than running downhill.  Still with an IT band, you might have to stick to deep water running but for other people who wanna get the overspeed benefits of running downhill with less of the impact.  So just doing treadmill running at a high speed at a 0.0% incline and some of the treadmills will go lower, right?  Some will go like a -1 or -2 so…

Brock:               I haven’t seen those.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah, they basically go up on an incline between the front of the treadmill will actually deep down a little bit.  I think there are the pre-course are a couple at our YMCA that does that.  They go down to -1 or -2.  So treadmill running is another one.  So, cycling , overspeed cycling – that trains your nerves to turn over just as fast as your nerves are trained to turn over when you’re doing like downhill running sprints on like, you know, downhill running sprints for example on golf course are really, really good, right?  ‘Cause you’re just like, it’s kind of a soft surface, usually controlled, it’s usually just a few golf balls to dodge.  A few angry, golfers shaking their clubs at you and cursing at you as you run pass them in your track shorts.  Go out there after the club closes or before it opens, but anyways that’s gonna aggravate an IT band either way.  But over speed cycling, right, where you’re getting that same over speed effect in your cycling at a hundred plus RPM, you can still get really, really good training of your nerves.  The big mistake a lot of people make when they’re doing like high cadence repeats on an elliptical trainer, on a bicycle is they use too high of a resistance, right, and so it’s more like a metabolic training effect than a nervous system or a neuro muscular training effect.  The idea with over speed repeats on a bike is you use a really like embarrassingly low gear but you get up to a speeding cadence that’s so fast that your brain freakin’ hurts.  Like that’s a proper over speed training session on a bike.

Brock:               So you’re totally in granny gear.

Ben:                   Uhmm, yeah and you shouldn’t be able to do it for any longer than 60 seconds maximum and for really, really high speed like 20-30 seconds and you’re nervous system is cooked, right, and then you take a break, and then you go and repeat again after a full recovery but over speed with a bicycle is really good.  And then finally, the elliptical trainer.  I think I’ve talked about this on the show before.  I have one of these outdoor elliptical trainers called an elliptiGO on my garage.  And that’s really cool – that’s a spendy machine like it’s a 15 hundred machine but it’s an elliptical trainer on wheels so you can ride up and down the street with your helmet and your glasses waving at your neighbors.

Brock:               Like you’re riding a coach in a parade.

Ben:                   And the funny thing is when I take this on a trail, this elliptiGO out on a trail, I get like “Yo, what’s up?” nods from like the guys on the dorky who come in bicycles, like the guys on a rollerblades with the ski poles, it’s like, you fit in with the people who are on the non-conventional, you know, ambulatory modes of transportation out there, yeah.  Anyways though, indoor elliptical trainers is fine if you don’t want to embarrass yourself outdoors, you don’t have one of these elliptiGo but the crossover between elliptical training and running – there’s a few really interesting studies that show that you incorporate all the same muscles, you get the same cardiovascular stimulus, you get a good maintenance of things like VO2 max, running economy, running efficiency, but you of course don’t get the same impact as you’ll get when running.  So, all sorts of things that you can do, I mean, if I had IT band, I’d start with the water running, and the cycling provided as that it’s pain-free and then move in to like some elliptical training, eventually some treadmill and some golf course running, and you should be able to progressively get yourself to the point where you can maintain a high cadence running downhill, pain-free.  And again, if that doesn’t work, just run the hell out of your IT bands and you don’t have to worry about them after a while…

Brock:                ‘Til it flies off…

Ben:                   Oh, and we should also mention by the way, at – it’s kind of an older program that I wrote but that doesn’t mean it’s not good. – I have an entire program design to fix IT band friction syndrome and it’s one that I wrote when I was training for the half ironman world championships about 5 years ago and had an IT band.  Spent like 6 months researching everything that you could possibly do to get rid of IT band friction syndrome.


                           And I put it on that program at bulletproof knee and that was before Dave Asprey came up with the bulletproof coffee, I’ll just say you can look at the…  you can look at the server record or whatever they are…. So…

Brock:               Bulletproof knee involves a lot of rubbing of butter onto your knee.

Ben:                   Yeah exactly.  So – it’s a – I don’t think I can trademark it or probably upset the bulletproof coffee folks but it is there and has nothing to do with bulletproof coffee.

Abby:                 Hi Ben!  I wanted to know if you could give me any information that you have on the plant Kratom – k-r-a-t-o-m.  A friend of mine recommended it to me for sleep.  I’ve tried pretty much everything out there in regards to sleep and insomnia, and this is something that actually works really well for me,  but looking at some of the stuff online, it looks a little scary.  So, can you tell me what the benefits and any potential side effects of using this would be.  Thank you so much, bye.

Brock:               So, kratom is illegal isn’t it?

Ben:                   Well, so in Thailand it is illegal.  Also in Australia, Myanmar, Malaysia, a lot of these Indonesian countries where it does tend to be overused.  Well, it’s mixed with fun things like in Thailand, you mix it with cough syrup for example and you get this amazing psycho-active properties.

Brock:               Whew!  It’s an opium, right?

Ben:                   Yeah and some people mix it with like modafinil, right, the smart drug and get this crazy like pain killing…

Brock:               Smart and dumb at the same time.

Ben:                   Have the seen the movie… Oh! What’s it called?  It’s about this pharmacist who just start – he’s like this really clean living, small town pharmacist who just start mixing up these crazy blends and going out like doing  the local cycling races and just go on way up the…

Brock:               Ah, I’ve seen that.

Ben:                   It’s called… uhm, uhhh, I’m blanking on it.  It’s got…  we’ll look it up and put a link to it in the show notes.  It’s actually…

Brock:               Okay, now I’m curious.

Ben:                   It’s really funny and I –you know, how when you’re trying to remember a movie in the tip of your tongue and you can’t remember it.  Uhm, anyways though, it’s brand new too, just came out.  But yeah, this pharmacist mix these things like opioids and painkillers, with central nervous system stimulants, cocaine-like central nervous system stimulants, and cough syrup and he goes out and just like wins races and stuff like that ‘cause his legs are numb and he can’t feel pain but he can, you know, he’s extremely hyper like he drinks 10 cups of coffee and that’s kinda sort what this kratom stuff is like when it comes to its painkilling effect.  It has what called opioid receptor activity in it.  So, it binds your opioid receptors, it kills pain.  They’ll use it sometimes like wean from stronger drugs like heroine, cocaine, stuff like that.  And is comes from a plant.  It comes from an herb, you know, surprise here in Southeast Asia.  The herb is actually in the coffee family – so it’s in the coffee family but rather than acting as a direct central nervous system stimulant like caffeine would, it is a little bit more like a – acts like a methamphetamine.  You know, it’s basically an alternative to methadone.  So, and then of course when you mix it with other things it can have all sorts of interesting effects.  Unfortunately, the pharmacology of it, the toxicology of it has like been studied very, very little surprisingly  few studies on this stuff and what happens when it does things like bind to serotonin receptors, and what happens when it binds this opioid receptors.  We do know that it has some pretty high addictive potential.  You know, and they’ve proven that in animals and it’s definitely not that good for your liver when you combine it with stuff like cough syrup, you know, which I really don’t think that obvious necessarily doing which is probably getting rather than like the methamphetamine that the heroine, the cocaine-like effects of it is all the painkilling effects, right, and that’s why it helps with sleep.  It’s like morphine, it’s like pain killing yourself into sleep.  Well, just like anything, like Valium, like Diazepam, like Ambien, or some other ones out there, Lunesta, even like a really strong antihistamine like Benadryl or Nyquil or something like that.  Most of these are not only acting as a band-aid to cover up an underlying issue that is keeping you from sleeping, but there also, you know, we talked about Dr. Kirk Parsley earlier on what he was saying about the circadian rhythm and the effects of the circadian rhythm with airline travel, he also talked in that particular talk about how you have very, very difficult time getting into your deep sleep phases like your rapid eye movement sleep, and to a certain extent your non-rapid eye movement sleep, and so it’s kind of like knocking yourself out with a hammer to get to sleep and then expecting your nervous system and your neurons to regenerate the same way they would during normal sleep and frankly that just doesn’t happen.


                           And so when you sacrifice sleep like that or when you get sleep from a drug like that that’s used as a band-aid, you get inadequate learning ability the next day, less ability to form memories, less repair of the nervous system which has some really interesting long term effects in terms of things like risk for Alzheimer’s, and the effect on nerves which could eventually implicate things like reaction speed, risk for MS like all sorts of issues when it comes to not allowing your nervous system to recover properly.  So, I would personally be pretty careful with this stuff.  I would set it aside, get some cough syrup, the next time you get invited to a party, maybe use it in that way but… there are other things that you could do for sleep like I talked about smoking melatonin, you know, you could also use a melatonin patch, you can use like a sublingual or a melatonin liquid, and that usually works really well especially when you blend it with something like passion flower like melatonin and passion flower, blended together is like a really nice anti- anxiolytic which if  a pain killer or morphine-like substance is working for you for sleep might be the issue here, right, is anxiety which you know, a lot of people don’t have a parasite which can cause insomnia, or they don’t have like low blood sugar which can keep you up at night or they don’t have like too much screen times during phones at bed or something like that.  They just freakin’ or anxious, right, and so a lot of times something like that can help.  Another thing that really, really helps and the fact that it sounds like valium kinda gives you some clues even though it’s a sedative and an anti- anxiolytic that does not knock you out deleteriously in the same way that valium that’s not of a valerian root.  Using anywhere from 500 to 1000 mg of valerian root.  You know like that vapor boost sweet dreams blend that I talked about vaporizing, that’s actually melatonin, passion flower, valerian root, L-theanine, and you know, some of you out there may have reservations about smoking something in the effect of propylene glycol in lung tissue and that type of thing but you don’t inhale it, right, you just kinda breathe a little bit in your mouth and…

Brock:               Yeah, that’s the important thing.

Ben:                   … to the mucus membranes in your mouth that’s a…

Brock:               When you say smoking it, I think people think like really smoking it.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.

Brock:               It’s more like puffing on it.

Ben:                   I don’t know why they add the propylene glycol frankly, I guess just to produce the smoke-like effect honestly.

Brock:               So you look cool.

Ben:                   So you look cool!  So that’s it at  I actually have a link to the stuff and I think that knocks in to like free shipping with some kind of a discount or something like that.  You can check that stuff out, you can try like the valerian root, obviously there are a bunch of other things you can use for sleep but those are two that you could try so, ultimately this Kratom, I’ll be kinda careful with.  You know, interestingly, it’s not illegal in the US.  It is marked by the FDA as something that – it’s kinda like the raised eyebrow drug, right, something that is – it’s not illegal, it’s not banned by the World Anti-doping Association or you saw anything like that, but it’s also just one of those things that is so unknown it terms of its health effects that you just have to be super duper careful of it.  The searches for it on google by the way have skyrocketed.  People who like chew it, or brew it, or snort it, or smoke it, or inject it, or ingest it, it’s all over the place now interestingly.

Brock:               So it’s probably a week away from getting banned?

Ben:                   Probably, and some people will say like turn you into a sex god, some people will say completely saps your libido, so it’s kinda interesting stuff but Kratom – k-r-a-t-o-m, if you wanna check it out for yourself, or if you want to experiment with it a little bit, with a cough syrup, hope there are no children listening right now, and a…

Brock:               Do not try this children…

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.  Yes.

Cory:                 Hey Ben, this is Cory Edwards from Spokane Valley.  I wanted to know why power lifting shoes have an elevated heel.  To me, it seems like that would promote Achilles tightness and change a lot of biomechanical form in one people’s lifting?  And also I would like to know is when you squat, do you squat with no shoes on  for increased foot strength and balance?

Brock:               Personally I do all my weight lifting barefoot.   Which is probably a bad idea in terms of I’m going to crush my toe one day but it just – it feels good.

Ben:                   It’s – if you’re doing heavy weight lifting in an Olympic style weight lifting, going barefoot is not necessarily the best idea.  And if you look at photos of a lot of Olympic weight lifters or power lifters, or anybody doing like a heavy clean, a heavy split which is where your legs are split into a really low lunge.


                           You know, which is sometimes followed by like a jerk up to like a push press type of position, people doing like getting into a really, really low squat after doing a power clean where you literally like a power clean is you’re exploding the bar from the floor and then you’re falling underneath the bar, not really falling underneath the bar but rapidly sitting underneath the bar, squatting…

Brock:               You’re shooting yourself under there.

Ben:                   Yeah.  You know, it will be another example, even the deadlift, even like getting into a deadlift position where you really truly are using your leg muscles efficiently.  That requires you to get into a very low position with your butt and your hips, so at least there’s a relatively low position.  A snatch would be another example, right, like a squat style snatch where you’ve got a vertical trunk and you’ve got fully flex knees at the bottom and your hips and your ankles and shins are really tilted forward, the amount of what’s called dorsiflexion required for any of those positions that I just talked about is tremendous and the problem is that even in somebody with pretty decent ankle mobility, once you get in to the really heavy weights, it’s difficult to fall under weight and get into either a deep squat or a deep split with your shins either slightly vertical or your shins very far forward without having your ankles hold you back significantly from a mobility standpoint.  And so if you look at the biomechanics of this, a very, very easy fix for that a way to introduce the ability to get into those deep positions without your ankles holding you back specifically the ability of your ankles to dorsiflex, right, to flex forward holding you back is to somehow get your heels higher.  And so if you look at Russian weightlifting for example, they used to – they’re the first people to get into this weight lifting shoes and they would basically attach things to the bottom of their shoes, you know, like attach like wood with nails to the bottom of the heels to get that correctly elevated heel.  And yoga people like Katy Bowman for example talking about high heels can be deleterious to your low back because they’re shifting your biomechanics real world, they’re shortening the hip flexors and walking around in them all days is not a great idea.  And I would certainly say that walking around in shoes with raised heels could produce some of the other deleterious effects like keeping you in hip flexion or even inhibiting the ability to develop full hip extension the way that you would if you’re in like a barefoot shoe or minimalist style shoe.  And of course they also limit your ability to build up all your tiny foot muscles and your ability to like, you know, as we talked about in our last podcast to get strong arches to eliminate things like flat feet.  But if you are lifting heavy weights that you have to get low for, getting low to get underneath or getting low to lift them off the ground using your legs rather than your low back, elevated heels are a really good idea and if I were doing a lot of power lifting, and let’s say I decided I wanted to compete in a crossfit games and really work on my ability to get some of these heavy weights overhead, or be able to lift something really heavy off the ground, I would certainly use footwear with an elevated heel – a  weight lifting shoe.  So yeah, it does change your biomechanics, that’s core notes, it does promote Achilles tightness, and that is kind of why you use them is to be able to get yourself into more ankle dorsiflexion.  The problem is that a lot of people get the power of lifting shoes with the elevated heel and they walk around the gym doing curls because they’ve got their weight-lifting shoes on.  That’s just ridiculous.  So don’t be that person especially if you’re wearing your Ben Greenfield fitness t-shirt at the gym.  Do not –  take off the t-shirt or take off the shoes for the love of god.  Don’t wear lifting shoes unless you’re really truly weight lifting.

Allie:                 Hi Ben and Brock!  I know you like to answer poop questions but here’s a pit question.  Why would one armpit smell worse than the other armpit?  I generally don’t wear deodorant and certainly never anti-perspirant, and usually it’s not a problem but when I get nervous or stressed, I notice that my left armpit smells a lot worse than my right armpit, and I was wondering why this would be.  Thanks for all the help and it’s great to know there’s a person or people I can ask about this exciting pit questions.  Thanks.  Bye.

Brock:               We do like a good poop question, it’s true.  We also enjoy the pit question.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.

Brock:               Anything stinky, really.  Bring it on.

Ben:                   That’s right, that’s right.  We love sulphur here on the show.  You know, the fact that this is happening once you get fearful or stress or anxious,


                           that’s actually something that’s really interesting because you produce a scent when you’re anxious or when you have fear.  That is a signal to other humans that you’re anxious or that you’re experiencing fear.  And they’ve done brain scans on people and when sniffing what they call panic sweat, the regions of the brain that handle emotional and social signals become far more active in the people smelling that smell and the parts of the brain involved in empathy –this is really interesting – also light up.  So you’re sending this signal to people that you are in distress and technically it’s a signal for other people to empathize with you to help people to be able to socially be there for you when you stink.  So, you know, by wearing deodorant, you may be inhibiting your ability to be helped out by others.  So, there you have it.  We just put Axe Body Spray out of business, baby.

Brock:               Awesome.  (chuckles)  Finally.

Ben:                   Or of course on the flipside by wearing deodorant anti-perspirant, you’re sending the world a message that you fear nothing.  Only you are not stinky but you’re fearless, not stinky.

Brock:               I don’t even fear aluminum chloride on my – on my most vascular part of my body.

Ben:                   Well, it turns out that the studies that they’ve done on armpits do indeed show that not all pits are created equal including all pits on one single person.  So you can actually take the microbes from an armpit using like a Q-tip and they’ve done this on studies where they’ll put the microbes on a nutrient-rich plate called an agar plate and when they put it on there they wait for the bacterial colonies to grow and you’ll get more or less growth of bacterial colonies even in the same person when you compare the left pit to the right pit.  And one of the studies that they’ve done is called the armpit microbe study.  If you follow #pitstart on twitter, #pitstart, you could see some of the tweets that are coming out about the study.  And the theory here is very simple.  What they suspect is that it might have to do with arm dominance, meaning that with the dominant arm, you tend to hold that arm out and away from your body more frequently and that results in like a lower temperature in that arm, a little bit more aeration of the arm, and less propensity of bacterial colonies to grow vs. the non-dominant arm that’s kinda tucked up against your body letting all that bacteria thrive in that stinky armpit.

Brock:               I bet that’s got even more so now that we use Mysol with all-day like the most hand would be move away from your body…

Ben:                   Yeah exactly, the hand that’s on the computer, yeah, even while we were podcasting, right?  So I’ve got my right hand, my dominant hand is kinda resting on my desk and my left hand is kinda – that arm is tucked against my side.  So…

Brock:               I actually have both arms straight up in the air right now.

Ben:                   Yeah, you do that up in Canada.

Brock:               Woahhhh!

Ben:                   Pits are equal in Canada.  So anyways, that’s probably what’s going on here.  Really, really simple answer.  Ultimately it’s not something to worry about, like we talked about earlier you know, just slappin’ some coconut oil in either armpit, that’s a great antibacterial.  First is MCT oil which would completely suck for that by the way.

Brock:               Yeah, just make it slippery.

Ben:                   Yeah, so just slap some coconut oil in there.  Don’t get too stressed or excited about it but know that if you do get stress or excited, people are going to empathize with you as long as you just let it stink, baby.  So…

Brock:               Just waft it in their face.

Ben:                   That’s right, that’s right.  So, speaking of wafting things in people’s faces, let’s go ahead and look at this week’s review and remember if you leave a review for the Ben Greenfield fitness show on iTunes and you hear us read your review as we’re about to do on the show, then you just email [email protected] and we actually will send you a t-shirt, a beanie, and a cool BPA-free water bottle.  Now, you do that over on iTunes, just go to search for Ben Greenfield fitness over there.  The other thing is that of course if you want access to any links that we talked about, go to and we do a really kick-butt job getting all the show notes there for you.  So, today’s review is from Wellnessjen.  Wellnessjen congratulations.  Brock, you wanna read this one?

Brock:               I sure do.  The title is How In The H-E- Double Hockey Sticks Does He Know All That Ish!!??

Ben:                   Ish!

Brock:               All this Ish!

Ben:                   All this Ish, yeah.

Brock:               And it goes like this:  “Ben is the Rain Man Savant version in the healthy living realm!”  Hmm, wow!  I don’t know if that’s a compliment.  Judge Walker, Judge Walker.  No underpants, definitely no underpants.  “When it comes to knowledge about health, natural living, exercise, pooping, and probably any other topic you want to know about his brain knows no limit.  I…

Ben:                   Cough syrup and drugs.

Brock:               (chuckles)  I need those two, yeah.  “I am in the fitness industry myself and could never retain all the facts, names, tips, recipes, and other tidbits he dumps out every week.”

Ben:                   It’s good descriptive adjective.

Brock:               That’s some pretty good adjective.  “Perhaps it’s the smart drugs but regardless, I am in awe of his knowledge and inspired by his vast proficiencies.”

Ben:                   I don’t use smart drugs.

Brock:               Right?

Ben:                   Not really.  I use the Tianchi stuff sometimes but my smart drug is my cup of coffee.

Brock:               I took some Alpha Brain this morning.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.  I don’t even use that like I just – yeah, like occasionally from sleep deprived, I use smart drugs but I don’t even using them for like talks, workshops, and something like that.  Just…

Brock:               Just dumping it out… that’s where you go.


Ben:                   Just coffee.  I actually did have about 8 cups of day when I was teaching my workshop in Dubai just because I got in and I was so sleep deprived.  I got 5 hours of sleep, rolled out of bed like topped for 12 hours, slept for 5 hours, got up the next morning and did it again, and I was literally like every hour havin’ a cup of coffee.  That was a little much.  Yeah, anyways…

Brock:               Anyway, back to Wellnessjen… “Furthermore, Ben and Brock can take totally geeky topics and make them funny so the podcast easily holds my interest all the way through!  These podcasts act as entertainment and education for me!  I’m always going back and listening to previous episodes over again as I wait with baited breath for the next release!

Ben:                   Baited breath…

Brock:               That was my baited breath.

Ben:                   Baited breath to me always just seems like a horrible term because I – for some reason I think of the word “baite” and like I think of like a mouth with like baite in it like warm – is it weird that I think that way?

Brock:               That’s a little bit weird, ah.

Ben:                   So, baited breath to me is like a fishy foully mouth.  It’s horrible but you can still wait with your own baited breath for the next release.  So, awesome review, Wellnessjen!  And you can write [email protected], let us know your emailing address and your t-shirt size, and we’ll get a handy dandy snack pack out to you.  So, check out for all of the show notes, all the tweets that we tweeted about, the conferences that I’ll be speakin’ at, the calendar, all the resources from the questions that we answered, and oh! So much more and stay tuned this weekend for a fantastic yet controversial interview on – I believe this weekend is vaccinations.

Brock:               No, that’s not this week.  That’s next week.  We need to wait 10 days for that one.  I don’t remember but I know it’s not the vaccination one ‘cause I promised I’m going on vacation for that one.

Ben:                   Let me see if I can find my notes like all the listeners now.  This is great radio by the way.

Brock:               Uhmm, it’s great listening to us struggle to try to remember what the heck we’re doing.

Ben:                   This weekend’s podcast is called Why Strong People Are Harder to Kill?

Brock:               Oh yes!  Of course.

Ben:                   That would be a good one.  So, listen in and until next time, I’m Ben, he’s Brock.

Brock:               I’m Brock!

Ben:                   Thanks for listenin’.

                           Visit for even more cutting edge fitness, nutrition, and performance advice.

[1:03:46.1]              END 

#307: Is MCT Oil A Scam?, How to Measure Your Neurotransmitters, Downhill Running Tips And More!


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

Feb 4, 2015 Podcast: How To Measure Your Neurotransmitters, Downhill Running Tips, Is Kratom A Healthy Sleep Aid, Why Weightlifting Shoes Have An Elevated Heel, and What It Means If Just One Of Your Armpits Smell.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, call 1-877-209-9439, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form… but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


News Flashes:

You can receive these News Flashes (and more) every single day, if you follow Ben on, and Google+.


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This podcast is brought to you by Audible. Visit to get a free book!

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 13-16, 2015: Ben is speaking at New Media Expo, where the world’s top bloggers, podcasters and content creators teach you how to make money by creating content online, and how to enhance your blog, your podcast, your videos and any other media you create online. Better yet, you can come and attend the conference, then join Ben at Spartan Vegas on April 17! Click here to register for New Media Expo and use code “bgreenfield20″ to get 20% off the current pricing.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.

May 1-3, 2015: Ben is speaking at Ari Meisel’s Less Doing Conference, the year’s top conference for learning about things like how to manage your email inbox, hack productivity, enhance your cognitive performance, learn how to use the latest and greatest phone apps and productivity software, free up as much time as possible, and much more! Click here to get more details and to book a free productivity call with Ari.

The Ben Greenfield Experience is now available for either May 15-17 weekend or May 22-24 weekend (you choose): This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for you to be completely immersed in Ben’s unique combination of healthy, ancestral living and cutting-edge biohacking. Total cost is 10K for entire weekend(Fri/Sat/Sun) – includes yoga, workouts, food, and the full learning and living experience. You’ll leave completely equipped with everything you need to know to reinvent your home, your body and your life.

The entire experience takes place at the Greenfield home in the forest, which is completely biohacked to support optimum human biology, including 100% organic and green experience with zero electrical pollution, allergen-free materials, natural mattresses, circadian rhythm matched lighting and much more – including:

-Outdoor obstacle course on 10 acres of forest, with nature walking trails, climbing wall, rope traverses, spear throws, sandbag carries, Tarzan swing, monkey bars, mountain bikes, woodchopping and everything you need for the ultimate outdoor fitness experience.

-Completely outfitted gym with power lifting rack, indoor swim trainer, hypoxic air generator, bike trainer, elevation training mask, luxury Tru-Form running treadmill, outdoor yoga patio and much more.

-Cold thermogenesis endless swimming pool with chlorine-free, naturally ozone-treated hot tub for a one-of-a-kind outdoor, winter forest swimming and soaking body treatment.

-Plenty of biohacks to play with, including a recovery-enhancing Biomat, infrared lighting, electrostimulation, inversion table, power lung, and ore.

-Locally-sourced, natural and nourishing food from over a dozen nearby organic farms and Ben’s goats, chickens, organic vegetable garden, along with filtered, structured and deeply hydrating well water.

-Giant living room with wood burning stove and enormous oak table for learning, socializing, working, eating and relaxing.

-Outdoor obstacle course workouts, hiking excursions, yoga and high performance living led by America’s top personal trainer.

E-mail ben at if you are interested, and Ben will set up a private phone call with you to discuss details and your eligibility.

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

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



Listener Q&A:

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

How To Measure Your Neurotransmitters.

Karin says: She wants to know what you think of the Pharmasan Labs Urinalysis kit for measuring neurotransmitters. She ordered one from her naturopath but then heard it as a scam. She is trying to manage her anxiety naturally.

In my response I recommend:
-Primal Body-Primal Mind (pages 279-284)
-using mood/symptomatic screening to guide amino acid supplementation with something like Aminos or MAP

Downhill Running Tips.

Downhill Girl says: She has spent her off season recovering from an IT Band issue (fixing some muscle imbalances) and is now training for a spring marathon. Her A-Race has a lot of downhill and she is worried about re-injuring her IT band by actually training on hills. Are there other ways to train for downhill running other than running downhill?

Is Kratom A Healthy Sleep Aid?

Abby says: She is wondering if she should be worried about using Kratom as a sleep aid. She has tried almost everything else – but this plant actually works for her. She has read some scary stuff online about it. Should she be worried?

In my response I recommend:
-Vapor Boost Sweet Dreams blend
-Valerian Root

Why Weightlifting Shoes Have An Elevated Heel.

Cory says: He would like to know why powerlifting shoes have an elevated heel. Wouldn’t that promote Achilles tightness and change your biomechanics? Also, when you squat do you do it with no shoes on – for increased foot strength and balance?

What It Means If Just One Of Your Armpits Smell.

Allie says: She knows we like poop questions but here is a pit question. She doesn’t wear deodorant and doesn’t usually have an issue with BO but when she gets stressed or excited she notices that only one of her armpits gets smelly. Why would it only be one? She is glad to have people like us to ask these types of pressing questions ;)


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


Ask Your Question

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


The Shocking Truth About The Global Epidemic Of Lyme Disease


I recently watched the documentary Under Our Skin, which exposes the hidden story of medical and scientific malfeasance and neglect when it comes to Lyme disease. Thousands of people with Lyme disease go undiagnosed, or get misdiagnosed each year, and many who suffer the troubling effects of Lyme disease are simply told that their symptoms – from brain fog to chronic fatigue to frustrating muscle and joint pains – are “all in their head.”

The film follows patients fighting for their lives and livelihoods, and brings into focus a haunting picture of a health care system that is all too willing to put profits ahead of patients.

I found the film so incredibly interesting that I decided to interview health advocate Erin Elizabeth, who has actually had Lyme disease and dealt with it via completely natural remedies. In this episode, you’ll discover:

-Why common tests for Lyme disease won’t work, and which test actually does work…

-Why you can have Lyme disease and not even know it…

-How comment, conventional treatments for Lyme disease can actually be harmful…

-The best natural remedies for Lyme disease…

-How to manage the weight gain that can accompany Lyme disease…

-And much more!


-Dr. Klinghart’s full Lyme disease protocol

-Dr. Mercola’s article on Lyme disease

-Under Our Skin documentary on Lyme disease lab for lyme “Western blot” test

-My “REV Yourself” interview with Dr. Mercola

-Erin’s website and free e-book “In the Lymelight” at

Do you have questions, comments or feedback about Lyme disease or natural remedies for Lyme disease? Leave your thoughts below.

Everything You Need To Know About Hair Mineral Analysis.

Hair Mineral Analysis

I’m all about testing and quantifying what’s going on inside my body, so when Certified Holistic Health Coach Wendy Myers approached me at a biohacking conference and asked me if I wanted to have my hair tested with a hair mineral analysis test…

…I made a stop at my local barber…

…got a few strands snipped off…

…sent my hair off to Wendy’s lab…

…and was absolutely shocked at the results I got in my e-mail inbox a couple weeks later. In this episode, we talk about about the results of my hair mineral analysis, and you’ll also learn:

-Exactly what hair mineral analysis is and how it works…

-How you can discover things like adrenal fatigue, thyroid issues and nutrient and mineral deficits from your hair…

-What to do about heavy metal toxicities, and why some heavy metal chelators can actually be dangerous…

-How to tell if you’re undereating or overeating carbohydrates…

-Where natural remedies like infrared saunas and coffee enemas fit in…

-Why even pristine well water can have some serious issues…

-And much more!


-Click here to download the results of Ben Greenfield’s hair mineral analysis.

-Click here to download the results of Ben Greenfield’s hair mineral ratios.

-Want your own Hair Mineral Analysis? Click here to go to Wendy’s website and get started.

-Copper Dysregulation podcast

-Transdermal magnesium

-Infrared Biomat

-Trace Liquid Minerals

Do you have questions, comments or feedback or hair mineral analysis? Leave your thoughts below!

Is Bluetooth Radiation Dangerous?


Do you use a wearable like a FitBit or Jawbone? How about a bluetooth headset? A bluetooth enabled appliance? A car that has bluetooth technology? Some other bluetooth-enabled self quantification device?

Then this episode is for you, because it’s important to know exactly how bluetooth technology is affecting your sleep, your circadian rhythms, your health, your gut barrier, your blood-brain barrier and your performance.

In Part 1 of this episode, I talk to Christian Johan Smith, who is founder at Phone Halo, which creates technology that helps you track devices that you might lose. In this discussion Christian and I talk frankly about what he knows as the CEO of a company that relies on Bluetooth technology, and what I know from my research in the health space.

Resources Christian and I discuss during Part 1 of this episode:

-Trackr app for iOs/iPhone

-Trackr bluetooth tracking apps on Amazon

-The research study that Ben cites relating bluetooth to the blood-brain barrier

-Good synopsis of health effects of EMF

-Bluetooth airtube headset

-The anti-radiation Pong case for iPhone

In Part 2, I talk with Dr. Jack Kruse, a respected neurosurgeon and CEO of Optimized Life, a health and wellness company dedicated to helping patients avoid the healthcare burdens we typically encounter as we age. He is currently in private practice in the Gulf South and his research has been published in respected dental and medical journals. Jack’s previous episodes at include “Jack Kruse Tells You How To Live Like A Polar Bear And Eat Like A Great White Shark“, “How You Can Use Cold Thermogenesis To Perform Like Lance Armstrong And Michael Phelps”, and his “How To Beat Jet Lag Naturally“.

Resources Dr. Kruse and I discuss during Part 2 of this episode:

-The “Google Glasses cause headaches” CNet article

-“Bluetooth Radiation May Be More Harmful Than Cell Phone Radiation” article

-Pulsed microwave induced light, sound, and electrical discharge enhanced by a biopolymer study

-EMF and fertility study

-Proposed exposure levels of pulse-modulated electromagnetic fields study

-Microwave pulses health effect paper

-Blood brain permeability in rats from EMF paper

-EMF and cars article

-Radiofrequency, radiation and cancer paper from

-Cross Currents: Perils of Electropollution book by Robert O Becker

-Electromagnetism and Life book by Andrew Marino

Questions, comments or feedback about whether bluetooth radiation is dangerous? Leave your thoughts for me, Christian or Jack below!

Update: after recording this two-part series, I contacted Timex about the MoveX20 activity and sleep that I’ve used. They were very helpful, and informed me that it is a “Class 3″ bluetooth device (listen to the podcast to see what that means), that it has a power of 1Mw (0 dBm) and that it transmits every 1 second. I’d encourage you to do the same research for any devices that you wear!

#306: When Biohacking Goes Too Far, Hidden Carbs In Vegetables, How To Get Rid of Flat Feet & Is Miso Healthy & More

photo credit compthink

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

Jan 21, 2015 Podcast: Are Inversion Tables Bad For Blood Pressure, How To Get Rid Of Flat Feet, Is Miso Healthy, Hidden Carbs In Vegetables, and When Biohacking Goes Too Far.

Have a podcast question for Ben? Click the tab on the right, use the Contact button on the app, call 1-877-209-9439, Skype “pacificfit” or use the “Ask Ben” form… but be prepared to wait – we prioritize audio questions over text questions.


News Flashes:

You can receive these News Flashes (and more) every single day, if you follow Ben on, and Google+.


A donate button that reads - keep the podcasts comingSpecial Announcements:

This podcast is brought to you by Onnit. Just click here to see a video of Ben Greenfield and top Spartan athlete Hunter McIntyre punishing maces, steel bells, primal bells, medicine balls and much more. You save 10% at

The Obstacle Dominator training plan – has launched. Click here to get it now. This is going to make you tough as nails, give you a third lung, change your workouts forever, and thrust you into the fittest 99% of the population (probably the craziest and most nefarious thing Ben has ever created). On sale for $77 until Jan 15.

January 30th – 31st, 2015: Ben will be speaking in Dubai – Talise Fitness and Jumeirah Emirates Towers, proudly invite you to take part in an exclusive two day seminar held by the renowned nutrition and fitness expert, best selling author, coach, speaker, ex-bodybuilder and Ironman triathlete, Ben Greenfield. Click here for all details.

March 6-9, 2015: Come on the Spartan Cruise with Ben Greenfield and family! Use code BEN10 to save 10% when you book this cruise to a private island in the Bahamas for the ultimate tropical Spartan Race. This cruise includes free travel for kids and a kid’s Spartan race, along with a sprint Spartan for the adults, tons of partying, beautiful beaches and new, exclusive island challenges.

April 13-16, 2015: Ben is speaking at New Media Expo, where the world’s top bloggers, podcasters and content creators teach you how to make money by creating content online, and how to enhance your blog, your podcast, your videos and any other media you create online. Better yet, you can come and attend the conference, then join Ben at Spartan Vegas on April 17! Click here to register for New Media Expo and use code “bgreenfield20″ to get 20% off the current pricing.

April 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. The can’t-miss conference that is the Who’s Who gathering of the Paleo movement, with world-class speakers including best-selling authors, physicians, nutritionists, research scientists, professional athletes, trainers, sustainability and food activists, biohackers, and more.

The Ben Greenfield Experience is now available for either May 15-17 weekend or May 22-24 weekend (you choose): This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for you to be completely immersed in Ben’s unique combination of healthy, ancestral living and cutting-edge biohacking. Total cost is 10K for entire weekend(Fri/Sat/Sun) – includes yoga, workouts, food, and the full learning and living experience. You’ll leave completely equipped with everything you need to know to reinvent your home, your body and your life.

The entire experience takes place at the Greenfield home in the forest, which is completely biohacked to support optimum human biology, including 100% organic and green experience with zero electrical pollution, allergen-free materials, natural mattresses, circadian rhythm matched lighting and much more – including:

-Outdoor obstacle course on 10 acres of forest, with nature walking trails, climbing wall, rope traverses, spear throws, sandbag carries, Tarzan swing, monkey bars, mountain bikes, woodchopping and everything you need for the ultimate outdoor fitness experience.

-Completely outfitted gym with power lifting rack, indoor swim trainer, hypoxic air generator, bike trainer, elevation training mask, luxury Tru-Form running treadmill, outdoor yoga patio and much more.

-Cold thermogenesis endless swimming pool with chlorine-free, naturally ozone-treated hot tub for a one-of-a-kind outdoor, winter forest swimming and soaking body treatment.

-Plenty of biohacks to play with, including a recovery-enhancing Biomat, infrared lighting, electrostimulation, inversion table, power lung, and ore.

-Locally-sourced, natural and nourishing food from over a dozen nearby organic farms and Ben’s goats, chickens, organic vegetable garden, along with filtered, structured and deeply hydrating well water.

-Giant living room with wood burning stove and enormous oak table for learning, socializing, working, eating and relaxing.

-Outdoor obstacle course workouts, hiking excursions, yoga and high performance living led by America’s top personal trainer.

E-mail ben at if you are interested, and Ben will set up a private phone call with you to discuss details and your eligibility.

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

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


Listener Q&A:

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

Are Inversion Tables Bad For Blood Pressure?

Kim says: She is interested in learning more about inversions tables. Not because she has a bad back but for brain biohack reasons. But, she has high blood pressure (her doc says she “has the gene”) although she doesn’t have the lifestyle factors. Should she be worried about using an inversion table with high blood pressure?

How To Get Rid Of Flat Feet

Mike says: During a triathlon he felt a twinge in the bottom of his foot. After going to a podiatrist he was diagnosed with PTTD (Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction or “adult acquired flatfoot”). He is wondering if there is something he can do to treat that and his general tendon health.

In my response I recommend:
-Toe Spreaders

Is Miso Healthy?

Ellie says: She eats a lot of miso. She squirts it pretty thickly on her sandwiches. Is there any problem with this other than getting a lot of sodium?

Hidden Carbs In Vegetables

Judith says: She wants to know about Green Leafy Vegetables. Can you get too many carbs from them? She heard that some people limit them… why would they do that?

When Does Biohacking Go Too Far?

Girlfriend says: My boyfriend is an avid follower of you. If I break it down simply — he will do anything you say in your podcast or blog. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I have some resentment that he listens to you more than me… :) I commend him and you for optimizing your life. But you have to admit, a lot of the stuff you cover can easily appear as crazy to the average individual. I’ve watched my boyfriend swallow a dozen amino acid/or whatever pills in one gulp, wear orange glasses everywhere he goes, keep the thermostat at a chilly 60 degrees, and replace all his lights with red light bulbs. He rarely holds a conversation with me without rolling on a pipe, stretching, or doing yoga poses. You speak about better love & relationships, but I have this digging feeling that he’s unwilling to compromise, and yes, I’ll say it, obsessed with optimizing his life. Do you have any advice? Shouldn’t there be a balance to this?

In my response I recommend:
-The book “Just Enough


– And don’t forget to go to!

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


Ask Your Question

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Episode #306 – Full Transcript

Podcast #306 from


Introduction:           In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Are Inversion Tables Bad For Blood Pressure, How To Get Rid Of Flat Feet, Is Miso Healthy, Hidden Carbs In Vegetables, When Biohacking Goes Too Far, and much more.

Welcome to the podcast.  We provide you with everything you need to know for total performance, fat loss, recovery, digestion, sleep, brain, and hormone optimization.  So whether you’re an Ironman triathlete, or you just wanna shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill, cutting edge content from

Ben:                   Brock, I’m feeling pretty jacked this morning.  I gotta tell you.

Brock:               You’re feelin’ jacked are you, Ben?

Ben:                   I am.  I had a sore injured elbow for a few weeks there and…

Brock:               Oh yeah, you did some prolotherapy or prolozone on it.

Ben:                   I got a prolozone shot on it.  I did a little bit of stretching on it.  I’m back in the game.  I did a hundered pull-ups yesterday so…

Brock:               Nice!  Without stopping?

Ben:                   No.  Sounds impressive doesn’t it?  No, I basically just do pull-ups all day.  So I did 10 sets of 10, so like every hour I just wander in my gym and do 10 pull-ups.  So yeah!  I’m feeling good, I can’t type at all.  But other that – and someone is holding up my microphone for me, on that I’m good.

Brock:               Your arms are like noodles.  I’ve been doing a pull-up challenge ‘cause I decided this year I want to actually get good at pull-ups not just be the wimpy guy who can sort of do like 7.  So I’ve been doing this pull-up challenge every 2nd day, and I’m gettin’ there.

Ben:                   Now, are you swinging, are you – I know that all the cross-fitters out there are going cringe but are keeping/cheating when you do them?

Brock:               Absolutely not.  I’m keeping my body straight, like legs cross behind me, like ankles crossed behind me, and just like nice and straight between the shoulders and the knees.

Ben:                   Good.  We’ll talk about inversion therapy later on I know because we have a question about inversion tables.  But pull-ups are pretty much like inversion tables in reverse like especially if you’re actually hanging and getting full extension in between each pull-up, you get an amazing decompression and what’s called a traction effect on the shoulders, on the spine.  I’m all about hanging, man, I do – I hang from my pull-up bar, I’ve got like a little neck device, it’s called the cervical traction device.  You can google it, but I hang by my neck and it like pops all my neck vertebrae, I hang from my inversion table, and it pops all my little vertebrae, I’m like a freakin’ gibbon, dude.  I’m a gibbon.

Brock:               I’m just worried that you’re gonna be showing signs of stroke any day now.

News Flashes:

Brock:      is ripe with all kinds of awesome…

Ben:                   Ripe.

Brock:               Ripe.  Rife?  Is that the word I was looking for?

Ben:                   It’s up to you.

Brock:               It’s rife or ripe depending on who you’re talking to.  Or which study you’re looking at.

Ben:                   Ripe, prodding… whatever.  Speaking of ripe though and by the way, everything we talked about I tweeted out over  A brand new article that appeared up in your neck of the woods, Brock, meaning Canada, I guess when I say, you neck of the woods, that’s kinda similar to like New York being in the same neck of the woods as San Francisco.

Brock:               Yeah honestly, Vancouver is a lot closer to you that it is to me.

Ben:                   You were in Toronto, and this was in Vancouver, but it’s an article that appeared about snorting chocolate.  Snorting chocolate comes to Canada at a Vancouver candy shop.  I love how the article starts out.  It says, “Everybody loves snorting chocolates,” (laughter)  “It’s for everybody.”  So, here’s the deal, this has actually been around Belgium for years and it’s just now starting to appear in the mainstream but the idea is, you use this kind of like mini catapult…

Brock:               I will not joke catapult.  It’s hilarious.

Ben:                   Yeah, to shoot chocolate into your nose, and for 2 bucks a hit anybody can try snorting this chocolate.  And it’s like this fine high quality cocoa.  You can do cocoa raspberry, or cocoa ginger, and it’s like about an eighth of a teaspoon that you’re snorting, but the proprietor of this candy shop says that snorting chocolate can be a very satisfying experience, and you experience the chocolate for a couple of hours and it’s very subtle, and you’re not going to get irritated  by it.  A lot of people have suggested it’s cleared their sinuses.

Brock:               Hmmm.


Ben:                   So, to me it sounds a hell of a lot of fun than like a freakin’ like netty pot full of sodium.

Brock:               Yeah absolutely.

Ben:                   Yeah, so the snorting chocolate.  And if you want to see a demonstration of the snorting chocolate catapult, and how that actually or – ‘cause if you’re having trouble visualizing that, then just go to the show notes at and we have a little link to that article that has a video as well.

                            Another thing I tweeted was that there’s something that professional athletes are doing a lot of now.  It’s not snorting chocolate.  For those of you who are into the professional football league, and I don’t know if you’re watching the NFL play-offs over this past weekend, the Indianapolis Colts had a big vat of bone broth on the sidelines.

Brock:               Nice!

Ben:                   And then an article came out in Yahoo Sports about Kobe Bryant and about how much freakin’ bone broth – like he has like this big, giant, thermos of bone broth that he uses at practice and as part of his daily nutrition routine.  And you know, the thing about bone broth and it is a good note in that article, the Lakers head strength conditioning coach says, you can go to a store or on the shelf, you can get like vegetable stock or chicken stock and that’s probably been flavored with like salt and chicken flavored bullion cubes and maybe some MSG, and has a very low vitamin and mineral nutrient value.  But if you make your own bone broth, and you actually don’t skim all the Jell-O like stuff off of it, a lot of people get all fat phobic, right? And they’re all like – oh!  This, they just picture all the fat globules on that bone broth somehow clogging up the arteries which we know now is a myth but that’s the gelatin component of bone broth.  And frankly, over at, there’s this podcast by this lady called The Nutrition Diva…

Brock:               Hmm, yeah, I listened to that the other day.

Ben:                   … and she’s got great podcast and she talked about how – the fact is some parts of bone broth have actually been blown out of proportion in terms of how healthy bone broth is for you, like the proline, and the glycine, and the vitamin, and the mineral content frankly is not that much higher than a lot of other food sources, such as other vegetables, meat, etc. but the gelatin, if you actually consume a gelatin-rich bone broth is where a lot of the research behind bone broth actually lies.  So, you gotta get like the thick, Jell-O like stuff for it to actually make a difference when it comes to everything from like healing your guts, to providing you a lot of the building blocks for connective tissue, but if you do get that nice fatty, globule of bone broth, it’s good stuff.  So, and apparently Kobe Bryant thinks so too.  So, you if too want to be able to dunk a basketball then just drink some bone broth.

Brock:               You know why or you know who set Kobe up with that, don’t you?

Ben:                   Probably our friend Dr. Cate Shanahan, I guess.

Brock:               Exactly.  Yeah, your buddy, Cate Shanahan who was on the podcast – then goes last summer.

Ben:                   Yup, exactly.  Yeah, that’s a good podcast if you go to  Just search for Cate Shanahan.  The last thing I wanted to mention was ginger.  And the fact that if you compared ginger to the popular diabetic blood glucose controlling drug Metformin, that’s used for diabetes, it turns out that ginger based  on this most recent study that was done on ginger actually has a better effect on fasting blood sugar than the most powerful diabetic drug that we have access to.  And ginger supplementation in that study not only reduced fasting blood sugar but also hemoglobin a1c which is like a three month snapshot of blood sugar, apolipoprotein B and a-1 which are some of the more deleterious lipoprotein associated with cholesterol and a few other risk factors for chronic disease, so it’s so easy.  In this study they used ginger powder but it’s so easy to get the same effect by boiling ginger, by chewing on ginger, by going out and buying ginger candies from the grocery stores.  No, I’m just kidding.  If – yeah, you might be counter-acting the effects if you do it via the ginger candies.

Brock:               Yeah, probably.

Ben:                   It’s probably a wash at that point.

Brock:               I’m sure they’re dipped in vegetable oil and rolled in high fructose corn syrup.

Ben:                   They’re pretty tasty, though.  But anyways, yeah ginger.  You can even take ginger if you’re too lazy, cook it.  You can just drop it in the – like the smoothie like a blender, but one good way to go because it is gonna stay bio-active if you boil it and then you put it in the refrigerator.  You can just boil a chunk, chop it into slices prior to boiling so you’ve got a more surface area of the ginger available for being heated.  And then if you want to, you can just do that once, like you can batch it and just keep some ginger root that’s been boiled in your refrigerator, and you can toss that like if you – I know lots of our listeners are green-smoothie people, right?  You can easily just put that in your green smoothie and it will not only help with digestion and inflammation, but it will also help with any blood sugar response to that giant green smoothie that you might be sucking down in the morning.


Brock:               Did they say what an efficacious dose is?

Ben:                   Uhm, the gram dose of ginger powder was about 2 grams of ginger powder, and for my understanding that’s the equivalent of right around a half a finger’s length worth of ginger root.

Brock:               Oh okay, that’s not bad.

Ben:                   So, I know it’s not like you’re no on like a wheel barrow full of ginger root.  So yeah, there you go.  You can see all of those studies and more over at and get links, if you just go to the show notes for this episode at

Brock:               That was the most delicious news flashes we’ve ever had.

Ben:                   Uhmmm.

Special Announcements:

Ben:                   So before we jump in to this week’s special announcements, I have to issue an enormous, embarrassing apology…

Brock:               Oh no!

Ben:                   … about kettlebell yoga.

Brock:               Oh.  (chuckles)

Ben:                   Last week’s episode.  Legendary strength coach Dan John wrote to me and informed me that despite my belief and my claims on the podcast last week to have invented kettlebell yoga, it has in fact been in existence as a term and as a practice since like the freakin’ 80s or something like that.  So…

Brock:               That deserves a sad trombone.  (sounds)

Ben:                   Yes, high in my face.  So, I just wanted to mention that I no longer take credit for the invention of kettlebell yoga apparently has existed, I was just unaware of that fact.

Brock:               Fair enough.

Ben:                   So, there’s that.  The next is that we released over the weekend discussion about money with my mentor Tai Lopez, and Tai Lopez and I have this podcast series that’s going on right now in which I ask Tai questions about my finances and money, and life, and business, and you get to sit and listen in.  I know it doesn’t have to do a lot with fitness but it’s interesting stuff and I wanted to open up that part of my life to people.  So, that’s part of the premium podcast, you go to  But Tai and I talked about Tony Robbins’ new book “Money”, we talked about the best ways to protecting grow wealth, what Tai’s personal investment philosophy is.  And he’s a fun guy to listen in to and I pretty much ask like one question, he drones on for 40 minutes, and then other questions.  So, he’s a wealth of knowledge, you can listen to that episode if you own the Ben Greenfield fitness app which is free, you can just unlock that from the app which is available in both the android and iTunes store.  If not, just go to  Another thing is that we have a sponsor for this episode.

Brock:               Hurray!

Ben:                   And the sponsor makes the sandbag that was part of my workout last night.  Last night’s workout was pretty minimalist in my opinion.  I basically have this treadmill in my office that I use as my treadmill work station but I also have a door going out of my office into the forest outside.  So I have a sandbag out in the forest and I basically was doing sprints on my treadmill ‘cause the ground is too icy outside to do sprints and then I’d run outside and do thrusters with the sandbag where you do a squat and then stand and press overhead.  So I do one minute on the treadmill, then run outside and do 10 sandbag thrusters, and then run back inside and do the treadmill, and then the sandbag thrusters.  And the sandbag was of course made by today’s sponsor Onnit.  And the thing I like about Onnit is that they produce this fitness gear that is really unique.  They’ve got the maces, they’ve got the sandbags, they’ve got the giant monkey face kettlebells.  My kids are incredibly proud because they can now carry the howler kettlebell which is a little 18 pound one from the bottom of our stairwell all the way up to the top and back down without dropping it and destroying the wood finish upstairs.

Brock:               (chuckles)  Or their toes?

Ben:                   Yeah, so it’s for kids too.  So check out Onnit, you can go to and you save 10% when you go to vs. just going to in which case you would pay an ungodly amount of money for this stuff.  If you go to you save on 10%.

Brock:               That’s o-n-n-i-t (dot) com.

Ben:                   Not to be confused with o-n-i-t (dot) com which I’ve never visited but I suspect it’s probably drug paraphernalia or porn.  So…

Brock:               … or cat videos.

Ben:                   Or cat videos.

Brock:               Probably all three.

Ben:                   Another couple quick announcements before we jump in to this week’s Q and A.  The first is that for those of you who live in the Washington and Idaho area and happen to be listening to this podcast on the day that it comes out tomorrow night, I’m speaking in Coeur D’alene at Pilgrims Market about 12 ways to burn fat without exercising.


                           And if you don’t want to hop on a jet and fly into Coeur D’alene then you can also access that.  That would be on the premium podcast as well.  So also, I’m speaking in Dubai next weekend, January 30th and 31st, so if you’re in or near Dubai or you know someone there, check out the show notes to this episode at  And you can get hooked up with a two-day intensive workshop on becoming superhuman, that’s in Dubai.  And then finally the last thing that I wanted to mention is the New Media Expo.  Now, this might be up the alley of a lot of our listeners.  This is where the world’s top bloggers and podcasters, and content creators meet and teach about how to make money by creating content online, how to enhance your blog, how to make a podcast, how to create better videos, pretty much anything that has to do with media, online, and business.  That’s what this Expo is about.  Now, I’m speaking there but better yet in my opinion, on the last day of the conference or the day after the conference ends is the Spartan race in Vegas.

Brock:               Oh cool, good timing.

Ben:                   So yeah, kinda one-two combo than like I am.  So anyways, you can get into the Expo at  That’s and there’s actually a code – a special secret code that we’re putting in the show notes over at

Brock:               Shhh.  Secret.

Ben:                   You get 20% off, 20% off and use that code for the New Media Expo in Las Vegas, baby.

Voiceover:        Did you know that Ben Greenfield personally mentors trainers, coaches, physicians, and nutritionists from around the globe?  From business building tips, to advance team and performance, and health concepts.  It’s all part of a private mastermind called The Superhuman Coach Network, when you join, you get instant access to monthly workshops with Ben, a Q and A forum, over 40 hours of cutting-edge audio and video education, and much more.  Check it out today and become one of the world’s leading health and fitness experts at

Listener Q & A:

Kim:                  Hi Ben, this is Kim.  I have a question about inversion tables.  I’ve heard you mention many times the benefits of inversion tables and I’m interested in buying one, not because I have a bad back but for brain biohack reasons.  However, I have high blood pressure, my doctor says I have “the gene”.  I have never practiced any of the bad habits for self-induced high blood pressure.  I’ve seen information on both sides: one – several information that suggest if you have had high blood pressure, you just stay away from inversion tables.  And the other half of the information I’ve seen says – if you have high blood pressure, inversion tables can be beneficial.  Just wondering if you have any thoughts on this.  Thanks.  I enjoy the show, and hi, Brock!

Brock:               I like that her doctor told her that she has “the gene”, as if that’s like she can’t do anything about it.

Ben:                   The Gene – dadadada!

Brock:               You have “the gene”, I’m sorry.

Ben:                   You have “the gene’ for high blood pressure.  It’s called the “heart gene”.  You have a heart…

Brock:               Yeah, you have a heart and you have blood.

Ben:                   You are at risk for blood pressure, you also have arteries and veins, and that increases that risk even more.  Well, we’ve certainly done episodes on natural remedies for high blood pressure.  And really the thought on this is very simple.  Pretty much anything that trains your body how to vasodilate and vasoconstrict better is good for blood pressure.  And so, that would include things that are red because nature gives us clues.  Beets are a perfect example, watermelon is in fact another good example of something that increases nitric oxide and can open up blood vessels.  There are products out there that do like grips strength training where you grip and release, and grip and release.  And those are actually fantastic for high blood pressure based on the same reason that like yoga and taichi are good for high blood pressure because you learn how to move and relax, then move and relax.  So any of those types of exercise modalities are fantastic for high blood pressure.  The other thing and we’ve interviewed this gentleman on the podcast before.  What’s his name?  He’s so prolific that I’ve forgotten his name.  He wrote the book, Body by Science, Doug McDuff.  And his strength training protocol which is basically a super, super, slow strength training protocol, right?  Like 10-30 seconds up, 10-30 seconds down, two complete muscular failure before moving on to the next exercise and doing like 5 different exercises.


                           The idea, and I’ve written an article about this over at but the idea is that when you’re moving that slowly, you get a huge amount of peripheral blood pressure increase like in the little capillaries that are in your muscle and that serves to drive blood back to the heart thereby decreasing what’s called central blood pressure.  And so you get a blood pressure lowering effect in terms of the type of blood pressure that would be considered to put you at risk for cardiovascular disease while still getting all of the strength training risks or strength training benefits, rather,  depending on how you look at them.  So yeah, really interesting but any of those strategies can be used for blood pressure and of course I’ll link to the previous podcast that we did.  It was 140 somethin’ I think a while back on blood pressure.  One eighty four, podcast 184.  Anyways though, when it comes to inversion tables, there is some talk out there about inversion tables and blood pressure and the reason for that is because there is this fellow named Dr. Goldman back in the 80s and he published this medical study that suggested that inversion therapy could increase blood pressure and internal eye pressure.  And for anyone who’s hung from an inversion table before, that part of that internal eye pressure, probably does not surprise you.  And the first few times that you hung from an inversion table, it is uncomfortable.  Your head gets a lot of pressure in it and that’s first of all just because your body has to learn how to shuttle blood efficiently as you’re hanging upside down.  The other reason is that inversion actually increases the amount of capillaries that feed your head and so you increase blood flow to your head and blood flow to your brain through the use of an inversion table but the first few times when you don’t have that buildup of capillaries, and you’re not accustomed to shuttling that blood around, it is uncomfortable and you do actually feel that your eyes are gonna pop out of your head.  So anyways though, after that study there’s been a series of studies that have shown that inversion tables and inversion therapy is not responsible for strokes, it’s not responsible for popped blood vessels, and research shows that you’re no more of a stroke risk hanging upside down than if you’re exercising or moving right side up.  So, further research has found that the body has these mechanisms that get put into place to prevent any damage from being upside down.  Your body learns how to shuttle blood quite efficiently in the same way that when you’re lifting weights as long as you’re doing so in a slow and controlled fashion, that peripheral blood pressure offsets the central blood pressure.  It’s very, very similar with hanging from an inversion table.  And actually similar research has shown that with inversion especially inversion with oscillation, meaning as you’re hanging from inversion table, you sway from side to side and you sway back and forth…

Brock:               Oh, I thought you’re gonna say rotating… like a spinning inversion table.

Ben:                   Like a gyroscope…   Some of the patient’s blood pressures in those studies actually dropped, so an inversion table may actually be beneficial for blood pressure ultimately.  The trick is to kinda move as you’re doing it, right?  To kinda twist around stuff as you hang.  So, I’m a fan, like I mentioned earlier of inversion and of hanging, if you wanna get a good inversion table, I would say, if I could recommend one brand, it would be the brand Teeter, that’s T-e-e-t-e-r and they have this brand called Hangups.  Teeter Hangups.  They’ve been around since like the early 80s, that’s the type of inversion table that I have.  It’s much easier than like getting crappy boots and the pull up bar and hanging from the door even though I think Teeter does indeed make that type of system too if you wanna do – who is it?  James Bond that hangs upside down and does the situps?

Brock:               I don’t know.

Ben:                   I don’t remember.

Brock:               I know Rocky did it but he was hanging in the like in a barn.

Ben:                   Yeah.  Anyways, those particular tables are tested really well for endurance and rotation control, and ease of assembly and they meet the most astringent inversion tables safety standards.  Did you that there are indeed inversion table safety standards?

Brock:               I didn’t but I’m glad to know that there is.

Ben:                   And they even – if you go Teeter, I’ll put a link in Amazon but the Teeter Hangups even has like this really cool chart that shows you a bunch of exercises that you can do from an inversion table.  Twenty Nine different stretches and movements that go above and beyond just situps and swaying side to side.  So…

Brock:               Oh, they’ve got a vibration cushion too.

Ben:                   Yeah, I mean you could pretty much like go full on, like high class, first class.

Brock:               I’m never standing on my feet again!

Ben:                   Yeah, so check it out – Teeter Hangups.  We’ll put out the Amazon link to Teeter’s stuff in the show notes for you at and best of luck not popping blood vessels in your head.


Mike:                 Hi Ben and Brock!  Great podcast and love all the wonderful information.  And this is Mike from Northern Indiana.  I experienced an injury this last summer during a triathlon.  On the run portion, I felt twinge in the bottom of my foot and after consulting with a podiatrist, the diagnosis was Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction or PTTD and I’m wondering if there’s anything I can do for that tendon and just for the overall general health of my tendons and ligaments and what you would recommend.  Thanks for the information and the awesome podcast.  You guys do a great job!

Brock:               I like that it’s nicknamed “adult acquired flat foot”.

Ben:                   (chuckles)  Exactly!  Yeah… it’s acquired.

Brock:               Are you supposed to get it as a child and that’s weird that you get it as an adult?  I don’t know understand why it’s called that.

Ben:                   Well, you know that – it was back in the 1900s that there’s this guy named Philip Hoffman, he was an orthopedist.  He did this study and the study was called “Comparative Study of Barefooted and Shoe- Wearing Peoples” which is fantastic title.

Brock:               That’s the title of my next album.

Ben:                   I am a shoe wearing people.  Are you a shoe wearing people?

Brock:               I am not.

Ben:                   No, I am barefooted.  Anyways though, he published some really interesting results in The American Journal of Orthopedic Surgery with a bunch of photos and they were in particular photos and studies of people who grow up wearing shoes vs. people whose feet were primarily spent inside of shoes.  Or people who grow up barefoot vs. people whose feet were inside of shoes.  And when you look at the photos that are absolutely amazing.  The difference in terms of cramped toes and the flat feet, and the collapsed arches and the people who are accustomed to shoes vs. the people who grow up like walking on the beach, and walking barefoot.  And even if you look at kids, like one of the photos shows a kid who’s worn shoes for 3 months and then compares that to an adult who went barefoot their whole life.  Three months was all that it took to shape a child’s foot and start to cause their toe like their big toe to turn inward and the amazing things that in this study, in which this Dr. Hoffman looked at over 186 pairs of primitive feet which would be like hunter gatherers and tribal populations who just don’t wear shoes and walk around barefoot.  He didn’t find one single foot that have this flat foot syndrome or any of the other symptoms of weakness that you find in normal shoe wearing populations.  So, foot development turned out to be really similar on all populations, up until the introduction of these built-up overprotective shoes.  So shoes are the primary culprit when it comes to altering your natural foot structure.  But they found some other interesting things to like – there’s a study in India that found that flat feet were far more prevalent in people who wore footwear before the age of 6 and that might be because 6 are kind of like or 6 years old is when a lot of bone structure development has actually taken place by that point, but kids who are barefoot from mostly 6 years have way better developed arches and less flat feet.  So, you know, you’re probably getting the idea here that one of the number one things that you could do to strengthen your feet and to even restore arches and there’s been another – this wasn’t a study , it was more of an n=1 kinda case study but they’ve shown that you can redevelop arches in flat feet just by beginning to use barefoot or minimalist shoe type of approaches.  So, you definitely wanna stay away from built up, overprotected orthothics and shoes with lots of arch support.  The only exception to that would be like if you’re listening in and you get a lot of heel pain and you have like heel spurs, that type of thing.  Sometimes orthotics can remove the pressure from the heel granted you’re still going to weaken your arches but if you’re just trying to like heal a heel spur, then the arches can come in handy for like heel spurs, plantar fasciitis, issues where you need to take some pressure off of your heels but unless that’s the case, going barefoot and getting into minimalist footwear is one of the most important things that you can do and you can do it all the time.  Even if you can’t wear shoes at the office, you can walk your dog in your barefeet, you can get the mail in your barefeet, and the newspaper, and you can walk around the living room with your barefeet, I mean, there’s so many opportunities you should be able to spend several hours per day unshod.


Ben:                   Now a few of the other things that are going to help accelerate the process of restoring normal archers and restoring the feet from flat feet, one would include spreading your toes, if your toes spend a lot of time in a compressed toe box, not only it can be helpful to do exercise as were you’re fanning out your toes as widely as you can and you can actually do this as an actual exercise right, relax the toes and fan them out, then relax them and fan them out. I’m all about getting more bang for your buck in a time standpoint, I mean, you could do something like that when you’re bench pressing or you know in between sets of dead lifts like you can, yeah, you don’t have just to sit there and have that be the only thing you’re doing you can do while watching re-runs of Modern Family or Family Guy.

Brock:               Some shows that involve family.

Ben:                   Why is that?  Why do funny shows have family?

Brock:               I’ve never watch Modern Family.  Is that funny?

Ben:                   It actually is, it’s pretty funny.

Brock:               It’s pretty funny.

Ben:                   It’s legitimately funny.

                           Uhm, anyways though the other thing is you could actually spread your toes while you’re sleeping and I’ll put in a link in the show notes, but you can get this special things called Toe Spreaders and they actually keep your toes spread when you’re sleeping, those can help with plantar fasciitis, they can help with heel spurs, they can also help with flat feet. Uhm, walking in different directions can be extremely helpful and what I mean by this is you can do like monster walks with an elastic band attached to your feet, you’re like ankles together and you could do forward monster walks, backward monster walks, side to side monster walks, or you’re down in like a quarter squat position walking with the resistance of that elastic bond but do these in your bare feet or your socks and your feet are gonna have to work in all sorts of different directions.  And then one last tip I will give you would be  uneven surfaces and of course sand is one.  A lot of us don’t have access to sand.   There are now like anti-fatigue mats popping up all over the place for people who work at standing workstations I know there’s one that’s  called Tapo.  I believe it’s called – it’s on like at Kickstarter right now, I am right now as we recording standing on one called a KyBounder.   it’s a k-y bounder.  All these different anti-fatigue mattes here at some point for but when I’m standing on this thing in my bare-feet I’m constantly having like it is very similar to standing in sand.  It can extremely dense foam and so your body is constantly having kind of move and adapt and it stretches your feet and it helps to shape your foot as you’re standing, it relieves pressure from your joints that you normally get if you’re standing on just like carpet or wood or concrete or something like that.  So standing on uneven surfaces, walking on uneven surfaces, I don’t know, go jump on your bed, anything that involves walking around on uneven surface and I just kind of – but if you ever stood up and just like walk across your bed specially you got one of this new like springless mattresses, it works quite well for something like that.  It’s actually very therapeutic for your feet.  In previous episodes I’ve talked about like the Essentia mattress and I’ve  also talked about the Casper mattress and in one of the rooms in my house, I actually have one of this mattresses on the floor, it’s in my kids’ playroom.  But when I go in there and when I walk around and sometimes I just walk around that mattress and you feel your feet just stretching all over the place.  So that’s another option just like, spend a bunch of money on a king-size mattress and just like throw them on the floor somewhere for walking around on if you have some change to spare.  So, there’s that, if you don’t have a beach, just get a mattress.  So there are those some of my recommendations for a getting rid of flat fleet.

Ally:                   Hey Ben!  Ally again, so I eat a lot of miso like I spread it pretty thickly on my sandwiches.  Is there any problem this other than I’m probably getting a lot of excess sodium?  Thanks, love the podcast!

Ben:                   I think the first thing we need to address is – Ally why are you eating sandwiches?

Brock:               I don’t know, man, I eat sandwiches.

Ben:                   Yeah?

Brock:               Yeah, I’ll have a sandwich about once or thrice a week, I’ll have a sandwich.  My wife makes this sour doughs bread and I’ll put like some hummus on there.  I don’t think I ever put miso on there, I’ll do like some kind of vegetable and some meat like you know, an old school sandwich, dude.

Brock:               It’s your fault that I don’t eat sandwiches like three years ago when I started working with you, like you were giving me the smack down anytime I’d have any bread so it’s out of my house for about two years now.

Ben:                   Well, yeah, but that – you don’t make your own bread.

Brock:               No.

Ben:                   Which is actually very – if you would freaking learn how to bake your own bread which is not hard to do.

Brock:               It’s easier just not to eat bread.

Ben:                   Yeah, I have a recipe in Beyond Training for making your own bread that is literally like it takes five minutes to put the ingredients into a bowl and you put ‘em into a pan and you put it in the oven, it’s more like a flat bread/cracker but it works fine for sandwiches, like totally fermented  gluten-free whatever.


Brock:               Anyway…

Ben:                   Anyways though, miso, I guess the primary concern that a lot of people have about miso is it’s considered to be a high sodium food, like one teaspoon of miso gives you like 200-300 milligrams of sodium.  But the really interesting thing is that they’ve done research on miso and found that despite its high sodium content it doesn’t appear to have that effect on the cardiovascular system particularly speaking of blood pressure, blood pressure that a lot of other high sodium foods can, and they even compared in animal studies identical concentrations of salt like table salt sodium chloride and they compared that to equal versions of miso, and found that the miso did not raise the blood pressure like the salt actually did.  So you know, reasons for this aren’t quite clear but the speculation is that miso has this protein composition derived from the soy protein component which is where miso comes from is soy beans and that the building blocks of protein they get formed from this soy protein when the beans are fermented helps to counteract any of the issues with the sodium in the miso.  So it’s one of those deals where it’s a whole food, right, and all the components are working together to help you out a little bit so the blood pressure isn’t much an issue with miso.  Now there are some interesting thing is that you should know about miso.  First of all it’s got some benefits when it comes to  vitamin K if you get the right kind of miso.  So there’s a bunch kind of different misomiso and the way that miso is made is you typically add a bacteria to ferment the soy beans that are used and a traditional like a Chinese miso, they’ll use bactillus bacteria and what happens is when you ferment soy bean using this bactillus bacteria is you create a bunch of form of vitamin K called MK7 which is the form that’s really important for like bone health and decreased risk of osteoporosis and proper absorption and utilization of vitamin D, balancing of calcium, all these cool things that happen when you get adequate vitamin K,, same type of vitamin K you get from say like batto or grass-fed butter.  So that’s what you’d get in Chinese miso.  Now Japanese miso typically uses a different strain to ferment the soy beans. This is called aspergillus.

Brock:               Aspergillus? 

Ben:                   Aspergillus, anyways though, the idea with that type of fungi or bacteria is that that can actually affect the isoflavones that are in soy beans and what happens is when that particular micro-organism is used to ferment miso, it’s capable of turning some of this isoflavones in particular they’re called genistein, there’s another one called daidzein and it ferments this into something called equol and you don’t have necessary be super duper familiar with all these terms and weird names.  What you should know is that once it is present in the body has really good anti-cancer benefits and also cardio-vascular benefits and so whereas a Japanese miso, is going to be better for cardio-vascular health and for anti-cancer benefits, you’re going to get more digestive benefits and vitamin K2 producing benefits from a Chinese miso.  So the take-away message here is that if you’re going to include miso as a staple in your  diet.

Brock:               Especially in thick quantities…

Ben:                   Yeah, experiment with different forms.  You could use like a dark red miso, you could use a yellow miso.  There’s a variety of different misomiso pastes out there that you might get in Asian section of well, technically the Asian section of most stores, it’s like the GMO non-organic miso that is notoriously high in like the genetically modified soy.  But if get like a nice dark reddish brown miso or like the orange/yellow miso from like the actual Asian market or the Asian grocery store, you’re gonna get a lot of these really, really good compounds and you can see almost automatically whether it is a Chinese miso or this Japanese miso.  I say mix it up right, like you use different kind to getting both benefits of the fermentation of these soy beans using different strains of bacteria. It’s the same reason I recommend a wide variety of fermented foods right, don’t just eat yogurt, have like kimchi some sauerkraut, have some kiefer, have some kombucha, like you wanna expose your body to a variety of different strange, because each of those strains result in the production of different types  of vitamins, minerals and beneficial effects.


                           So, I guess like the one concern with miso is of course the soy, because it’s the fermented form of soy its gonna be you know a lot of digestive inhibitors, a lot of the things that can wreak havoc from an autoimmune standpoint, you don’t have as many of those risks like a fermented soy bean versus say a non-fermented soy bean like edamame for example, which I’m not a huge fan of.  But if you do have, if you test your blood and you’ve got a lot of like thyroid anti-bodies or you’ve done one of the better allergy test called the Xyrex lab test where you test for really big sensitivity to soy based proteins.  You may want to consider eliminating these all together.  But if that’s not the case, miso like real miso, a real fermented non-GMO, like certified organic miso is really good for a lot of stuff and you can use it as a marinade.  You can combine it with you know like olive oil and ginger and garlic to make some really nice dressings.  You can heat it and you know I like to just make a soup on the counter top and you do some water, you do some miso and just throw in your choice on vegetable like some shitake mushrooms or some carrots or raddish and you just heat all that up and make a nice miso soup.  Or of course Brock, you could put it on a sandwich, avocado and some fish and have yourself a little miso avocado seafoods sandwich.

Judith:              Hi Ben!  I wanna know about green leafy vegetables.  Can I get too many carbs from green leafy vegetables?  I heard some people limit ‘em and other people say any amount of green leafy vegetables is fine.

Brock:               I love the green leafy vegetables.  That’s basically what – when you give me the smackdown about the sandwiches I just basically replace it with leafy greens.

Ben:                   You’re gonna die of carb disease now.

Brock:               Ah, crap!

Ben:                   Everybody knows leafy green are full of carbs.  They’re gonna knock you out of ketosis.

Brock:               Again?

Ben:                   And when you get knocked out of ketosis your world will begin spiral -downwards into early death instead of cardiovascular – no, I’m just kidding.  Most people worry way too much about the carb content in vegetables.  So, here’s the deal – most of that is fiber, most of the carb content in most of these vegetables even like freaking carrot you know, is fiber and you know calorie per calorie, especially dark leafy green vegetables they’re one of the most concentrated source of nutrients in any food, and the carbs like I mentioned, they’re packed in layers of fiber that makes them very, very slow to digest, they have very little impact on blood glucose I don’t know if you’ve ever like taken out a blood glucose monitor and like eaten a bunch of, you know, like kale salad with some olive oil and pine nuts on it maybe some vinaigrette and tested your blood glucose afterwards, you’ll notice pretty much like a mute response.

Brock:               Yeah.

Ben:                    So, you know, and of course they’re rich in everything, like vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E, all your vitamin B, beta-carotene and for your eyes  like a lutein and the zeaxanthene, and a lot of dark leafy greens have a little bit of omega 3 fatty acids in them and I can’t say enough positive things about them.  Some people, and I will acknowledge this you know, they can for like thyroid conditions like non-heated when they haven’t been steamed like spinach and kale and some this things what they have called goitrogens in them, those can have an impact in thyroid functions if you’re eating a bunch of them.  The other thing you should know is if you’re following a low fodmap diet, like if you have constipation, gas-bloating, small intestine bacterial growth, those type of things, some of these vegetables and spinach is among them tend to ferment and they tend to have a high potential for fermentation if you do a lot of them,   like spinach for example, more than 15 leaves of spinach that’s considered enough to cause some significant fermentation if you’re somebody who struggles with like constipation or small intestine bacterial over growth.

Brock:               As much as 15 leaves.

Ben:                   You could, you could go Google fodmap chart and I recommend anybody who struggles like constipation, gas, bloating, digestive distress, etc., you pay attention to a fodmap chart just like slap it on in your fridge and you could see, you know for example, colored greens don’t really ferment, kale doesn’t really ferment, ginger doesn’t really ferment, these are all things you could put into smoothie.  Whereas like cabbage has pretty good fermentation potential, spinach has a lot of fermentation potential, tomatoes ferment, onions and garlic big time.  So there’s some of these things that you just want to pay attention to, but ultimately when it comes to the sugar content it is pretty low in all of these dark leafy greens.


                           Now when you look at carbs in general if you wanna consider this like on a carb matrix, leafy vegetables are gonna have the least amount of carbs in them right, so lettuce, herbs, spinach, kale, all that stuff.  Next up would be stems and flower vegetables in terms of carbohydrates contents like broccoli, cauliflower, mushrooms, asparagus, still not a lot of carbs when we’re comparing these to like fruits and potatoes but, those have a slightly higher carb content than some of the lettuces and dark leafy greens.  Next you have fruits, and fruits, that would, you know, not necessarily traditional fruits like melons and apples but just – a fruit is the part of the plant that contains the seed, right, so squashes would fall in this category, peppers, eggplant, green beans, tomatoes,  all of these are fruits.  Avocados are kinda considered a fruit as well in this case even though they have considerably less carbohydrates than like squashes, peppers, eggplants, green beans, etc.  But in time you’ll start to deal with seeds, and a vegetable/fruit then you’re going to have a little bit high carb content and as you probably woud have guessed, roots are a vegetable and those have the highest carbo kind carbohydrate content in all the highest starch content.  And I would say those would be the one thing to really go out of your way if you’re really trying to go low carb or control surges in blood glucose you could just be careful with these you know, like, you eat them after you workout or whatever, parsnips, sweet potatoes, yams, you know, carrots and radishes can also be considered roots but they have way less carbohydrates than sweet potatoes and yams and white potatoes and some of things you would intuitively, you know, when you eat them, you can tell there’s this  you know, a little bit more – more starchy.

Brock:               I like to do a demonstration.

Ben:                   So, anyways, that’s kind of deal with low carb vegetables  versus high carb vegetables but ultimately vegetables in general are low carb when we’re talking about comparing them to like vegetables versus a jamba juice  or vegetables versus a bag of chips or a yes, a sandwich.  So, ultimately I wouldn’t worry about this too much at all.  I would keep your dark leafy greens up and don’t worry about the whole like ketosis/kale conundrum.  Oh, that’s what we should call this – the ketosis/kale conundrum podcast.

Brock:               Yeah, I thought for sure you gonna bring up the net carb ratio, like the calculation?

Ben:                   Oh, yeah.

Brock:               Offset of the carbs by the fiber content?

Ben:                   Yeah, that’s where you look at the label and it has x amount of carbs in it but then when you look at it you can see how many are those carbs right from fiber versus how many are actually derived from like true you know, starch based carbohydrate.  But the problem with that is that  sometimes I forget about this stuff ‘cause I don’t look at labels barely anymore coz I just eat food that doesn’t have freakin’ labels on it.  So,  that’s part of these too.  And more real food and you’ve just got like dried foods in glass mason jars and vegetables and produce and some meat, it’s like, you know, the whole label thing becomes far less of an issue when you’re eating that way which I encourage you to do if you’re listening in.

Brock:               Speaking of glass jars filled with real foods, we’ve got a couple of people over the last little while that have had the same sort of complaint, I would call it.  A couple of them, well pretty much everybody who’s written in has asked to be anonymous but basically the problem boils down to a boyfriend and or a husband and or a wife have gotten a little too deep into this podcast, (laughing) to the point where their significant other have actually been kind of filled with resentment towards you Ben because they listen to you more than they listen to the their significant other and basically like keep the house too cold, keep the lights too dim, do things, yoga poses while they’re supposed to be chitchatting, rolling out on a rolling foam roller the entire time they’re watching tv, and stuff like that to the point where they’re a kind of destroying their relationship by the sounds of things and I feel like they’re going too far but I – maybe we should give people some advice here.

Ben:                   Yeah, I think that that’s a misconception a lot of people have about me and people who are on the cutting edge of health is that we’re all like connected to a FitBit 24/7 walking around with you know, aluminum foil tucked in our underwear to protect us from EMF, a little hand held meter to measure how much electricity is in each room that we walk in to and then just like a lacrosse ball in the pocket at all times to rule out any tiny little element of you know, tissue adhesion and maybe what else?  A heart rate monitor, of course, you have to have a heart monitor…


Brock:               Blue glasses for the morning and/or glasses in the evening.

Ben:                   Yes.  The glasses all the time and the different spectrums for the different times of day.  Here’s the deal – I think probably the best way to frame this would be a really good book that I’m personally reading right now.  The book is called Just Enough, and in some this book is about  success and its basically saying that success is not about spending all of your time in the pursuit of one objective, right, so much that you miss out on the pleasure and the richness that you can find in other dimensions, but instead have a good balance of just enough, in each category, and in the book,  I’ll put a link to it in the show notes for folks if they wanna get it you know, it’s what I’ve got in my Kindle right now, but the books talks about how there’s four categories that are gonna keep you satisfied in life and successful.  And these four categories are happiness, achievement, significance, and legacy.  And when these four factors are in balance your success will feel satisfying and worthwhile and I certainly think that you can get out of balance when it comes to for example the achievement component where you’re like trying to have it all, trying to do every workout, trying to use every biohack and all of a sudden like your focus on your family, which should fall into like that legacy category falls out of place, you focus on significance like what kind of contribution that you’re making to the world would fall out of place, your focus on happiness like eating a giant tub of gelato or having hot crazy wild sex instead of going to bed at 9:30pm…

Brock:               Oh, maybe both!

Ben:                  … when the sun has set, you know, like so you know, you can certainly get out of balance and I personally,  I know that this is a little bit airy-fairy in terms of putting an exact amount, but I, I follow about an 80-20 approach right, like I’m always posting things about how alcohol  can be detrimental and might cause hormonal disruption.  It’s not like have a little meter that I measure at exactly six ounces of wine with each night, like I pour glass of wine every single night and every once in a while when I’m out and about all I have is three or four drinks and you know, and one of those might be a – shocker! – a beer that’s not gluten-free like all these things that frankly I don’t really care about because  my focus that point is on happiness and relaxation and not you know, counting calories or paying attention to being to being in a consistent biohacking mode.  I  will go to you know, see a movie sometimes, or watch movie at home, and I don’t have my blue light blockers on or like my compression boots, I don’t have like a foam roller there, I’m just like sitting there, you know, like snuggling up to my wife and you know, making out, I don’t like to get carried away here, but like I know I’m not gonna get laid you know, three quarters of the way through that movie if, you know, which is you know, let face it like that’s one of the fun things about like hanging out like watching movies something like that, what it ends up with and so  that’s another case where I’m just like screw it, I don’t need to be doing all these biohacking.  I’m just here to have fun, you know, the same thing with food, like every single night is just about all throughout the day I eat the same thing almost everyday right?, like I have smoothie for breakfast, I’ll have a salad for lunch and at night I eat whatever happens to be there like tonight is pad thai night at our house.  We’ll have pad thai, the kids are making pine apple ginger ice cream like you know, and yeah like that would totally knock me out of ketosis as a totally high carb meal, my blood glucose is gonna be through the roof when I go to bed but I don’t freaking care because I’ve had a great night my family eating wonderful food and just hanging out.  And so this what this comes down to is yeah, sometimes you’re going to potentially create a little bit of a deficit in the health that you’re constantly pursuing.  Sometimes you’re going to miss out on a chance to workout a muscle tissue adhesion or miss out on a chance to recover properly cause you got back from a workout and decided that rather than taking a magnesium salts bath and spending 15 minutes on the foam roller you’re gonna you know, whatever crack open a beer and stand around chatting to a friend on the telephone, you know.  So it’s just like you have to have this balance.  I would encourage you read this book “Just Enough” because so many of us just focus in like the all or nothing principle rather thinking about hey what’s the minimum amount of this stuff that I could do, to achieve some happiness, you know, achieve some help but then focus on other things like significance and legacy and contribution and achievement rather than just focusing on our own freakin’ bodies.  I think I just broke a record for how many times I said freaking.


Brock:               That’s ‘ cause you mean it.

Ben:                   Just ‘cause I can’t say the other word.  Anyways though so yeah that’s my take on this, is do not be under the impression that I endorse this constant 100% 24/7 bio-hacking mentality because I don’t and you know, I am all about getting the most you can for the minimum amount of input, the minimal effective dose, right, and just enjoying life.  And if you were come to my house and hang out you’d find that there is far less of this focus on bio-hacking than you maybe under the impression that there actually is.

Brock:               I was working on a video the other day, again with Dr. Doug McDuff, funny he came up twice in this podcast but he was specifically talking about exercise when he said that but I think that it rings true for this as well, he said if you actually get stressed out or angry because you can’t make it to your workout or you have to skip going to the gym or something like that then  you probably gone too far.

Ben:                   And you also probably have the wrong outlook on what exercise is, anyways, because for me if I get to the end of the day and I can’t make it to the gym, it doesn’t matter coz I’ve been like walking around in on my feet and taking pull-up breaks and all that stuff all day, anyways so exercise for me is an option not a need you know, at the end or at the beginning of the day.  So yeah, but I completely agree like that’s a great segue, if you miss your foam roller, if you’re in a pissy mood then yeah, there’s probably a little bit of a change in priorities that needs to take place.

Brock:               Alright, well, there we go!

Ben:                   Alright, well I guess that’s – that replaced this week’s review I suppose.  But of course if you do wanna leave a review, we do send out some super duper cool Ben Greenfield fitness gear packages straight to your front door and if you got an iTunes and you leave a review not only do we appreciate it, not only it is good karma for you, also send your free crap.

Brock:               Not literally, not literal crap.

Ben:                   Go to iTunes, leave a review, check out our resources for this episode at where you can learn to hang from an inversion table, fix flat feet, and sleep with Toe Spreaders on, assuming those don’t annoy your significant other.  Yes, alright.  Well have a healthy week, folks.  Thanks for tuning in.

                           Visit   for  even  more cutting  edge       fitness, nutrition, and performance advice.

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“What To Do With Your Money” – Part 3 of 67 Steps to Getting Anything You Want Out of Life Health, Wealth, Love, & Happiness with Tai Lopez


Welcome to Part 3 of this special podcast series, in which you get to sit in and listen to Tai Lopez coach me (and you!) using the strategies from Tai’s online video series “67 Steps to Getting Anything You Want Out of Life Health, Wealth, Love, & Happiness“.

In this premium subscriber episode, Tai and I discuss personal finances – particularly in the huge wake Tony Robbins is leaving with his new book “Money”, and how Tai feels we should protect and grow our wealth, and exactly what Tai’s personal investment philosophy is.

Want more of Tai?

You can listen to Part 1 of this series here, in which Tai and I talk about multi-tasking, reprogramming your genetics and checking your e-mail less.

You can listen to Part 2 here, in which Tai and I talk about how to know when you’re actually making enough money, and when you can stop focusing on income, start focusing more on life, love and happiness, and how to strike the ideal balance between being overambitious and underambitious.

Books and resources Tai and Ben discuss in this podcast:

-Tai’s retreats and public seminars in Hollywood, London and New York

-Tai’s Millionaire Mentor program

-Tai’s online video series: 67 Steps to Getting Anything You Want Out of Life Health, Wealth, Love, & Happiness

Do you have question, comments or feedback about what to do with your money? Leave your thoughts below.