#302: How To Reverse Tooth Cavities, The Healthiest Cookware, How To Use A Squatty Potty And More!


Dec 17, 2014 Podcast: How to Use A Squatty Potty, How To Reverse Tooth Cavities, Natural Tooth Whitening Remedies, Does Roundup Cause Gluten Intolerance, What Is The Healthiest Cookware, and How To Prevent Overheating During Exercise.

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 Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Facebook.com/BGFitness 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 http://www.onnit.com/bengreenfield.

December 15-19, 2014: Ben interviews 24 of the world’s leading experts in performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, brain, sleep and hormone optimization, and you get a free all-access pass. Check it out now at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/RevYourself.

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 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. Below is just a taste of what to expect at this 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.

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 Use A Squatty Potty

Jeff says: During your presentation at the Unbeatable Mind Retreat, you briefly touched on how something like the Squatty Potty can help align your body for better pooping… but somehow a number of audience members got the wrong idea about how it works and thought it was more like a child’s potty or a commode that needed to be emptied into the toilet. So, when you mentioned that when you are travelling you just drag a hotel room chair in to the bathroom to use, people were horrified/perplexed. Can you explain how it REALLY works so everyone is not terrified to stay in a hotel room after you?

In my response I recommend:
-The Squatty Potty

How To Reverse Tooth Cavities

Anne says: She recently went to the dentist and found out that she has a cavity forming between two of her back teeth. The cavity is just in the enamel, so she doesn’t need a filling. The dentist said that these types of cavities can stabilize or even reverse. Do you have any suggestion on how to stop this cavity from getting worse or even help reverse it?

In my response I recommend:
-Cure Tooth Decay book

Natural Tooth Whitening Remedies

Ellie says: She has a vanity question – do you have any natural remedies for whitening your teeth? She has heard that the over the counter whitening strips can really damage your body. Is there a better way to improve your finish line photo smile?

In my response I recommend:
-Charcoal Tooth Powder

Does Roundup Cause Gluten Intolerance?

Deb says: She was recently reading information about Roundup (Glyphosate)  and how that may be the reason why so many people think they are gluten intolerant but may just be ingesting some pretty toxic chemicals. She is celiac and so doesn’t believe in gluten anyway…but is interested to know your thoughts on the potential issues with Roundup.

In my response I recommend:
-Activated charcoal

What Is The Healthiest Cookware?

Jerrod says: (He saw you in Vermont by the memory test before the rope climb. He wants you to get out for the ultra beast.) He spent stupid amounts of money on “good” pots and pans that turned out to be total crap and is wondering what he really should be using to cook with. What kinds of pots and pans do you use (or do you just put things on a stick over a fire, now that you live in the forest)? He is worried about the potential stuff that is seeping into his food.

In my response I recommend:
-Cast Iron Cookware
-MetalFree link

How To Prevent Overheating During Exercise.

John says: A couple weeks ago he suffered severe heat stroke after a marathon. His temperature reached 108 degrees, they packed him in ice and it took 20 minutes to get back down to 102 degrees. The doc said he showed signs of heart problems and maybe stroke. His vitals returned to normal after a couple hours but he has had a constant head ache for 10 days. Is there anything he can do to avoid this overheating issue in the future? Hydration or electrolytes?  Also he wants to make sure that he is ok (especially the heart issues or stroke) and would like to know what types of checkups/tests he should get to make sure he didn’t do any permanent damage.


– And don’t forget to go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/love!

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.


Beyond Dehydration: Why Cramping Really Happens And What You Can Do About It.


Last month, I read one of the best scientific treatises on cramping that I’ve ever seen. The title of the article was “Cramping In Sports: Beyond Dehydration“, and was written by today’s podcast guest, Andrew Buskard.

If you’ve ever scratched your head about why the heck you won’t stop cramping during your workouts or races, this episode is for you! During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-Why a cramp during exercise is way different than a medically associated cramp…

-What’s really happening inside your body when you cramp…

-Why the traditional theories of what causes exercise associated muscle cramping are incorrect or have been mostly disproven…

-Why neurologically related cramps are the primary cause of cramping during exercise…

-Why simply tasting something very salty can reverse a cramp…

-How your environment, your relaxation level and even your genetics can affect your susceptibility to cramping…

-Strategies to stop cramping when you have adequate electrolytes and hydration but you’re still cramping…

Do you have more questions about why cramping really happens? Leave your comments and thoughts below…

Special Podcast Episode: How To Biohack Your Home And Create An Unbeatable Environment


Last week, I spoke at former Navy SEAL Commander Mark Divine’s Unbeatable Mind Summit. During my presentation, I showed how to stop electrical pollution, enhance your cognitive performance, detox your surroundings, and do everything possible to create an unbeatable environment in your bedroom, kitchen, gym, office and bathroom.

In today’s podcast, you get to sit in and listen to the whole presentation. Click here to download the slides, and see below for all the resources. Enjoy!


Resources For Your Bedroom


Resources For Your Office


Resources For Your Kitchen


Resources For Your Gym


Resources For Your Bathroom


Questions, comments or feedback? Leave your thoughts below!

Five Simple Steps To Turning Yourself Into A Fat Burning Machine.

fat burning machine

Almost every day, I get an e-mail, comment, tweet or Facebook message about how to become a fat burning machine. And the fact is, become fat-adapted goes way above and beyond adding a stick of butter to a cup of coffee or eliminating carbohydrates from your diet.

So in today’s podcast, I’ve brought back Greenfield Fitness System’s performance nutritionist Barry Murray, who was originally a guest on the episode “The Ultimate Guide To Combining Fasting and Exercise: Everything You Need To Know. In this episode, Barry gives us five simple steps to becoming a fat burning machine, including:

-How to increase your ability to use your body’s own fat stores…

-Why it’s actually a good thing for your muscles to have fat stored in them…

-The best menus, recipes, meal plans and all the “coping” strategies you need to make the shift into fat-burning…

-The best way to time your meals for fat oxidation…

-How to structure your diet so that you can trigger the adaptations you need to increase the rates of fat oxidation…

-How to benefit from depleted training and intermittent fasting…

-How stress or inflammatory factors inhibit overall physiological fitness, and which hidden lifestyle factors keep you from becoming a fat burning machine…

-How to compete or do hard workouts in a fat adapted state…

-And much more!

Do you have questions, comments or feedbacks about these steps to becoming a fat burning machine? Leave your thoughts below, and click here if you’d like to hire Barry for a consult or nutrition coaching!

#301: Is Sprouted Bread Bad For You, Can Weed Help You Sleep Better, How To Fix Damage From Birth Control Pills and More!


Dec 3, 2014 Podcast: Is Sprouted Bread Bad For You, Can Weed Help You Sleep Better, How To Fix Damage From Birth Control Pills, and How To Use Cascara As A Coffee Alternative.

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 Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Facebook.com/BGFitness and Google+.


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

This podcast is brought to you by Harry’s Shaving. is gifting all listeners of my show $5 off with promo code benHOLIDAY. That’s right, even if you’re already a loyal Harry user, you will still get $5 off a Winter Winston set with the promo code benHOLIDAY. You’ll get the razor, three quality blades, and a tube of their foaming shave gel or shave cream for just $25!

This podcast is also 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 http://www.onnit.com/bengreenfield.

As part of the celebration of our 300th podcast episode (last week), the Great Biomat Giveaway ends today, Dec 3. Click here to get in now and maximize your chance of $1750 worth of detox prizes!

December 15-19, 2014: Ben interviews 23 of the world’s leading experts in performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, brain, sleep and hormone optimization, and you get a free all-access pass. Check it out now at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/RevYourself.

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 24-26th, 2015: Come hear Ben speak at PaleoFX 2015. Below is just a taste of what to expect at this 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.

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.

Is Sprouted Bread Bad For You?

Bill says: Hey guys, how’s it going?  I just recently bought a sprouted bread and it has soy lecithin in it and I was just wondering what that is and is it harmful or OK to be taking in? That’s about it. Thanks for all you guys do.

In my response I recommend:
-The Digestion Sessions (the episode with Sayer Ji)

Can Weed Help You Sleep Better?

Cara says: Hi Ben and Brock, this is Cara again from Columbia Maryland again. Got another quick question for ya. I tried the CBD oil last night and it really helped me get to sleep, which I’ve been struggling with the past couple weeks. However I woke up, startled two hours later. I did fall back asleep but I did wake up again and again, probably about every couple hours… so, I’m not sure what was going on. I’m wondering if you had any experience using the product for sleep? Any insight would be great. Thanks again.

How To Fix Damage From Birth Control Pills

Megan says: Hi Ben and Brock, I had a question about birth control. About four months ago I stopped taking Yasmin after 15 years. I found some of your prior podcasts that talk about why you shouldn’t be on it but had some trouble finding out what to do to deal with the aftermath of going off of it. I’ve been to the doctor and their suggestion is to go back on it, which is not something I intend on doing. I feel like my ridiculously crazy mood swings are finally starting to level out somewhat but now, you know, I have the acne to deal with that just comes at any given time. My biggest concern is my hair loss. It’s really starting to thin now. I’m 37 years old and I’m really working on cleaning up my diet and, just overall, trying to improve my lifestyle. I’m currently running about 15 to 20 miles and I’m just about to begin training for my first half marathon this fall. I’m just looking for any advice that you can give me to get myself back on track and keep moving in the right direction. Love listening to the podcast – thanks a lot.

How To Use Cascara As A Coffee Alternative

Michael says: Hi Ben, this is Michael in Austin Texas. I was interested in a product called Cascara Tea. It was a follow up to one of your previous podcasts about Coffee Flour. I started looking up Coffee Flour and Coffee Flour seems to really only be available from the coffee flour website, as far as I can find. And it’s not going to be available until 2015. So, I’m just trying to get my hands on some of that. It sounds really interesting and I don’t want to wait until next year. So, I found a product called Cascara Tea which is basically the same thing and it’s kind of a traditional tea, people have been drinking and consuming it for a while in other cultures. It’s made from the cherry of the coffee plant, after the bean has been discarded. So I procured some of this through some means on the internet (was a little bit difficult, but got some) and it’s pretty cool. Real earthy and interesting flavor. But I was just curious if you knew anything about this and particularly any sort of benefits of the cascara tea over traditional coffee or even traditional tea? I’ve got all this ground up cascara tea leaf kinda lookin stuff and am curious if I can even further grind it by throwing it  in my Vitamix and getting into a really fine grind and use it as a coffee flour and basically eat it? What sort of unique nutritional benefits might that provide? Thanks and I appreciate the podcast and take care. Bye.

In my response I recommend:
-Cascara Tea on Amazon


– And don’t forget to go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/love!

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 Little-Known Test That Tells You Everything You Need To Know About Your Metabolism.

organic acids test

Last year, I interviewed pro mountain biker Chris Kelly in the podcast “7 Signs Your Cortisol And Adrenals Are Broken.“. While that podcast went into lots of detail about how you can measure for adrenal fatigue, the fact is that you can delve into far more detail about what is going on inside your body, especially when it comes to your cellular metabolism.

This little known test that tells you everything you need to know about your cellular metabolism is called the “Genova Organix Comprehensive Metabolic Profile“, and in today’s audio podcast, Chris and I cover everything you need to know about it.

During our discussion, we discuss this .pdf print-out – so download it if you’d like to follow along as you listen in. I’ve also included helpful shownotes below, along with the questions that I ask Chris in this episode.


Q. What is the organic acids test and how did you discover it?

A. About three years ago I wasn’t doing so well in terms of life outside of training:

  • Loss of sex drive.
  • Brain fog.
  • Fatigue.
  • Mild depression.

I ran a saliva hormone panel which showed low cortisol, low DHEA and low testosterone. Adrenal fatigue if you like. That was a red flag but it didn’t really say anything about the underlying cause. This was shortly after I met Dr. Dan Kalish and he persuaded me to take the organic acids test.

Organic acids are metabolic byproducts of cellular metabolism and they can be measured from a urine sample. There’s no need to go to a lab for a draw blood, you just collect urine at home. It’s a bit like when you put your car onto the rolling road and the mechanic analyses the exhaust gases. You can learn a lot about how well an engine is running like that.

I got really excited the first time I saw the test. At the time I was working at quantitative hedge fund as a computer programmer but my real passion was bike racing. The result looks very complicated to most people but to me it was like a programming problem.


Q. What biomarkers does an organic acids profile actually test?


Fat burning

  • Everyone wants to be a fat burning beast, right? This test will reveal show how well beta-oxidation is working, this turned out to be very important for me.

Blood sugar stabilization

  • This test was originally developed to help chronically ill patients, many of whom were pre-diabetic. The strange thing is those people have a lot in common with some athletes because (I suspect) of all the sugary sports supplements. This test can show you how well you’re burning carbs.

Energy production

  • Some of you listening will remember learning about the Citric Acid or Krebs cycle in biology. Basically it’s the process by which you convert food and air into energy. Each step of the process requires certain enzymes and nutrients to be in place, and when they’re lacking it shows up on this test. Once you know, it’s not hard to fix with supplements like CoQ10 for example.


  • This gets complicated fast, and you’ve talked about it in length on the show. Methylation is the way in which our body turns off the genes that are the blueprint which defines us. It’s also critically important for detox. If you’ve done a 23andme saliva test and worried about the MTHFR mutation, do this test as it will help you understand how well your methylation is actually working. One of the most sensitive markers for vitamin B12 deficiency is methylmalonic acid. That’s an organic acid that’s on this test.

Toxins and detoxification

  • Everybody is exposed to toxins, it’s in the food we eat, the air we breathe. That’s why we have a liver, but sadly it’s becoming increasingly overburdened. 2-methylhippurate is an organic acid is on this test, it’s a breakdown product of xylene from paints, varnishes, carpet. New car smell. The scary thing is that it’s not on this test to detect accidental exposure, it’s on because everyone is exposed to xylene and therefore it’s a reliable marker of liver function. Once you know you’re liver’s struggling you can support the liver with extra nutrients.

Oxidative stress/antioxidants

  • This is a very difficult area. When the brain is starved of oxygen during a stroke the neurons are killed by factors relate to oxidative stress. In animals and tissue culture a great deal of careful work has been done.  Some would argue that oxidative stress plays a role in Alzheimer’s disease and aging.
  • In healthy people the role of oxidative stress is far from clear but there is no doubt that many doctors believe a vegetable based diet rich in antioxidants is useful.
  • Athletes create more oxidative stress through increased energy production, but I suspect there comes a point where enough is enough. Some level of oxidative stress is required for cell signaling and to elicit a training response.

Neurotransmitter turnover

  • The first thing I should make clear is that this is not a direct test for neurotransmitters. I learned from Dr. Kalish that neurotransmitters measured in the urine are made locally in the kidneys have no relationship with the levels in the brain. The blood brain barrier keeps everything separate. It’s confusing.
  • This test measures the metabolic ashes of dopamine, serotonin and adrenaline. Usually the solution to problems found is stress reduction and lifestyle modification but in many cases amino acid therapy can be extremely helpful for insomnia, anxiety, depression and addiction.

Intestinal bacterial overgrowth

  • Certain bad bacteria in our gut, specially in the small intestine produce chemicals that can be measured on this test. It’s a crude test for SIBO. If you have an overgrowth of these bacteria then it’ll show up as bloating and on this test.
  • Sometimes you can crowd out these bacteria with probiotics but sometimes a short killing phase works better.


Q. Who should take it, and why would someone take this test? 

A. In short, anyone looking to produce more energy. My original goal was to upgrade from the age group categories to pro, but now with hindsight I see it’s everything outside of racing and training that matters. So if you’re like me and you spend lots of time trying to concentrate hard, the neurotransmitter turnover section is going to be really interesting to you. The serotonin, melatonin pathway is very interesting to anyone suffering from problems with sleep.

Or if you’re an athlete looking to ensure that your metabolism is running as efficiently as possible you’re going to love this test. It’s funny, people spend all kinds of money on equipment. You think of that like the chassis of a race car. But what use is that if the engine is not running right? My advice is to spend less time waxing the bodywork and take a peek under the hood.


Q. Is it a standalone test, or is it used in conjunction with other tests?

A. You can think of this test as a whole bunch of pieces of a large jigsaw puzzle. It’s important, but it’s not a standalone solution. I analyze these results for a living now and in a way my work hasn’t changed. I’m still debugging. I’m still asking why.

The hormonal component is the foundation, that’s still the best place to start. And sometimes stool testing to detect smoldering gut infections can be really important too. I routinely ask people to track their blood glucose, basal morning temperature and heart rate variability which can also give tremendous insight. That which gets measured gets managed.


Q. What are the optimal ranges for each of the biomarkers, and why?

A. There’s two ways you can interpret this test. The first is to look at each individual marker and notice that’s it’s high or low. The second way is to look at the big picture. Take orotate for example. That could be elevated due to excessive protein intake, or it could be the result of bacterial overgrowth.


Q. How can I implement what I learn from this test ‘in real life’?

A. Sometimes there’s a very specific reason why something is going wrong, like an infection or too much stress. Or it could also be because you’re doing too much training. Finally, you might have some genetic abnormality. Either way, it allows you supplement with confidence. Sometimes the test pays for itself in this way, supplements get expensive really fast.


Q. What are a few common markers that are ‘way off’ for a lot of people (i.e. athletes, health-conscious, workaholics)? Why?

  • Kyurinate tryptophan pathway.
  • Carnitine and fat burning.
  • Neurotransmitters and stress.

(Chris explains each of this in more detail in the podcast.)


As he mentions in the audio, you can book a half-price phone or Skype consult with Chris by using the code GREENFIELD at the NourishBalanceThrive website. If you have questions, comments or feedback about the organic acids test, then leave your thoughts below!

#300: The Bill Clinton Diet, Saving Your Gonads From Laptops And Bikes, Reasons For Early Puberty And More!


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

Nov 26, 2014 Podcast: 5×5 Workouts, What Is Glycobiology, Is Sitting On A Bike Bad For You, What Is Best Plastic For Water Bottles, and Can You Increase Growth Hormone With Fasting?

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 Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Facebook.com/BGFitness and Google+.


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

This podcast is brought to you by Generation UCAN. Just go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/UCAN to save 15% on the stuff that keeps you in fat-burning mode all day long.

This podcast is also 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 http://www.onnit.com/bengreenfield.

As part of our celebration of our 300th podcast episode, the Great Biomat Giveaway goes live Nov 26-Dec 3. Click here to get in now and maximize your chance of $1750 worth of detox prizes! 

December 15-19, 2014: Ben interviews 23 of the world’s leading experts in performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, brain, sleep and hormone optimization, and you get a free all-access pass. Check it out now at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/RevYourself.

Go ask your burning Obstacle Racing questions at ObstacleDominator.com for the brand new Obstacle Dominator podcast.

December 4-5 Ben will be speaking at Mark Divine’s Unbeatable Mind Retreat in Encinitas California. This is a life-changing experience for anyone looking to learn about SEAL principles, health and peak performance – with LIVE, hands-on training from Mark Divine and a world-renowned team of experts.

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.

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.

What Is Glycobiology?

Bryan asks: He recently has been hearing the term glycobiology. He is wondering what your thoughts are on the subject and whether you agree that it is as important as some people are saying to the future of our health?

Is Sitting On A Bike Bad For You?

Jonas asks: He rides a mountain bike to work everyday and is wondering how he should be sitting on it, not necessarily to go the fastest but to ensure he doesn’t get injured or create any issues later in life. He doesn’t want to wake up 10 years from now and find out that he shouldn’t have been “sitting like this”.

In my response I recommend:
-ISM Adamo Saddles
-Core Foundation exercises

What Is Best Plastic For Water Bottles?

Mark asks: He has been reading recently that even BPA free plastic water bottles can be harmful to your health. Do you have any recommendations on what water bottles are safe to use?

In my response I recommend:
-Klean Kanteen

Can You Increase Growth Hormone With Fasting?

Johan asks: He has read that the positive effects of fasting (24 hours or more) are quite evident with HGH and “rebooting” your immune system. If you are fasting and training to get the positive effects of testosterone, is that a powerful way to combine health and training? Could this also be helpful for kids to help control IGF1 and thus stop them from entering puberty too early by relying on HGH instead of IGF1?


– And don’t forget to go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/love!

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.


Episode #300 – Full Transcript

Podcast Episode #300 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/11/300-the-bill-clinton-diet-saving-your-gonads-from-laptops-and-bikes-reasons-for-early-puberty/


Introduction:  In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: The Bill Clinton Diet, Is Sitting on a Bike Bad For You?  What Is The Best Plastic For Water Bottles?  Can You Increase Growth Hormone with Fasting?  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, digestions, 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 bengreenfieldfitness.com.

Brock:               Hey there Ben!  How are you feelin’ there you old fella?

Ben:                   I’m feeling like I’ve been podcasting for 300 episodes, Brock.

Brock:               300 episodes?

Ben:                   300.

Brock:               You’ll top in – you’ll top in Misiatica.

Ben:                   I need some podcast Viagra.  I’m beginning to go limp.

Brock:               I went limp like a hundred episodes ago, you lucky bugger.

Ben:                   Seriously though dude!  We’ve made it 300 freakin’ episodes.  As a matter of fact, for those who are listening in, we’ve probably done more than 300 episodes ‘cause for every episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast is usually special episodes. So we’ve actually done like probably close to 600 episodes.  It’s crazy!

Brock:               It probably more than 600.

Ben:                   Yeah.

Brock:               Like there were times, like when I was away that we didn’t put a number on it, we didn’t count those.  We need to hire somebody out there who wants to just like do it for the love, should count all of our episodes for us.

Ben:                   Well in 2008, when I was a personal trainer, a fledgling young personal trainer; full of life and vigor.

Brock:               Yes!  Optimism.

Ben:                   Reckon we had to walk uphill both directions to the podcasting studio through barbwire in our bare feet, in your shoes.

Brock:               No!  We used two tin cans to communicate.

Ben:                   Anyways, 2008, I remember recording my first podcast and trying to figure it out how to upload it.  I don’t remember if iTunes existed, I think it did.  But… Yeah man, we’re podcasting for six years. It’s nuts.

Brock:               That’s awesome.

Ben:                   Almost seven years.

Brock:               It’s good.  I’ve only been with the show now for about three years last week, I think it actually was.  So I’m only half as tired and worn down as you are.

Ben:                   Happy Anniversary, Brock.  I’ll send you a magazine subscription or something.

Brock:               Sweet.

News Flashes:

Brock:               So your Twitter feed right now is completely overrun by something that we’ll talk about a little bit later.  But you still manage to squeeze in a few pretty cool studies this week.

Ben:                   Yes.  I accidentally blew up Twitter and I’ll tell folks why later on.   But in the meantime, let’s talk about a few of the things that I tweeted this week over a Twitter.com/BenGreenfield.  This is the latest and the greatest and the best of the best.  The first is our near and dear ex-US President Bill Clinton used to be vegan.  And I tweeted that he actually went from vegan to low carb paleo.  And there is a very interesting article that appeared about this in the Inquisitr, and it sounds like Bill was actually influenced by Hillary who introduced him to Dr. Mark Hyman.  Hillary introduced Bill to Dr. Mark Hyman.  Mark Hyman actually really wrote a very interesting article recently about – he launches this new diet called the “Pegan Diet”, I think it’s a mix of Paleo and Vegan.  But I think it sounds like some kind of a devil-worshipping twist, maybe ‘cause it sounds like pagan.  Anyways though, Dr. Hyman…

Brock:               Pagans don’t worship the devils.  That’s a misnomer.

Ben:                   They do in my special twisted religious head.

Brock:               I guess so.

Ben:                   So anyways, Dr. Hyman told Bill Clinton that his vegan-diet contain too much starch and insufficient good quality protein, and basically Bill Clinton switch to this paleo diet.  And the article itself also talks about and Anne Hathaway, another celebrity who was not for those you who are not familiar the U.S. President, she’s actually an actress.  But Anne Hathaway said that she didn’t feel good, she didn’t feel healthy on a vegan-diet and I have no clue if she’s doing it correctly.  As we have talked about before, there’s a way that you can really F-up a vegan diet by…

Brock:               Absolutely.

Ben:                   …doing it incorrectly, but…

Brock:               Tons of tofurky.


Ben:                   She’s also doing eggs and sausage for lunch now.  Anyways though so, I thought it was really interesting how Dr. Hyman is now preparing the Clintons especially Mrs. Clinton if she decides to run for President which is somewhat likely, he’s having them carry things like macadamia nut butter, walnut butter, turkey jerky and cans of wild salmon as they jet about the globe.  So it’s interesting!  Total switch, from vegan to paleo.

Brock:               That’s pretty awesome.  Most as awesome as you guys actually having a legendary funk musician as a President.

Ben:                   What?  What are you talking about?

Brock:                        Oh Bill Clinton, not George Clinton.  I always have been confused.

Ben:                   You must be Canadian.  Okay.  Anyways, let’s talk about…

Brock:               No I, I’m just old.

Ben:                   Let’s talk about Diabetes.  There’s this really interesting study that came out that showed that light and specifically sunshine could reduce your risk of developing diabetes.

Brock:               What?

Ben:                   And this was quite interesting.  They found that there was a direct link between sun exposure and decrease risk of Type 2 diabetes, decrease fasting glucose, better glucose tolerance, and decrease amounts of fasting insulin.  And this is partially links to Vitamin D deficiency.  In the fact that when you’re deficient in vitamin D, you have increased diabetes risk, but sunlight specifically was what they looked at in this study and they found a consistent link between lack of sunlight exposure and Type 2 diabetes.  The reason I think this is interesting is because a long time ago I had this lady named TS Wiley on the podcast and TS Wiley wrote this book called, something like “Sleep, Sex and Survival”.  I could be butchering the name but it’s something approximately like that.  And if it wasn’t named that, it should have been because I like that name. Anyways though, she goes into how when you are – when it’s summer, when you’re expose to a lot of light, when the days are longer, you actually have a better carbohydrate tolerance.  In other words, your body is better able to handle carbohydrates with less of a surge in glucose and less of a surge of insulin released by the pancreas.  And it turns out that one of the reasons to this maybe the case is because, as you’re exposed to the sun you get increased of vitamin D expression, and that increase of vitamin D expression helps you to be able to handle carbohydrates better.  So, the other interesting thing though if you think about this from kinda like evolutionary ancestral survival standpoint, is that if you are approaching a time of year when there’s less sunlight exposure but still eating carbohydrates you know, let’s say in the fall you know, an apples and pears and some of those – you know the fall/winter-based carbohydrates.  You’re eating those – more of them won’t technically be getting converted into body fat, right? ‘cause you have lower Vitamin D levels in the fall, in the winter.  And that would theoretically prepare you better for surviving the harsh cold and winter.  So it could be a little bit of a struggle…

Brock:               Yeah, exactly.  You didn’t have the central heating to turn on.

Ben:                   Yeah, exactly.  You know, but unfortunately we living in an area where we’ve got central heating and air-conditioning and probably far, far more carbohydrates than just like the simple fruits that may have been available in the fall, in the winter, and like in ancestral time.  But it’s very interesting how sunlight and Vitamin D are so linked in this new study, actually shows why that is the case.  So as you approach the winter and the fall, you know in November, the time of this podcast been recorded going into.  One of the things you may wanna consider is adding Vitamin D in to diet.  Unless you’re, you know, I don’t know, snow-boarding outside with your shirt-off or in your bikini.  But you know, all podcast listeners are bombing down the slopes in bikinis right now.

Brock:               They better be.

Ben:                   They better be.  Start in the vitamin D, use like a liquid vitamin D or you know, a little bit of extra vitamin D possibly over and above what you’d normally take especially if you want to improve your glucose tolerance. So, that was a pretty interesting study and then interestingly, very much related to that, another article that came out about how sleeping naked can also cut your risk of diabetes.  And this was a really interesting article.  I’ll link to it but – your core temperature is at its highest at about 11pm and as lowest at 4am and if anything prevents that decline in temperature, you can struggle to get to sleep, you can have disturb sleep, and you can also have a lower ability to burn calories as you sleep.  So it comes out to cold thermogenesis and with these researchers found is that when you’re able to drop the skin temperature by sleeping naked, your metabolism goes up and your fasted glucose is decreased when you wake up in the morning.


                           So sleeping naked also of course has other benefits that they go into the article including: giving your love life a boost and I’m going to assume that that means sleeping naked with someone else in the bed with you. I’m not sure sleeping naked all by yourself is going to give your love life a boost, unless you are simply maybe waking up happier than the usual, if you know what I mean.  Yeah, and also infections – it says, “Wearing nothing to bed can help women to avoid developing yeast infections because “thrush” a form of yeast loves warm restricted environments, so wear something loose or preferably nothing at all”.  So there’s another reason to sleep naked, ladies.  And that’s actually what I’m gonna to tell my wife tonight before we go to bed is that I’m concerned about yeast and her warm and moist spots and so…

Ewan:                You don’t wanna get thrush, baby.  Come on.Ben:                   I’d like you to sleep naked.  I don’t want you to get thrush or diabetes so take it off baby, take it all off.  So, one other interesting thing that I tweeted, and this was a hilarious video that was…

Brock:               Hil-arious.

Ben:                   Hil-arious.  It was a Ted Talk, and the Ted Talk was actually called “Help Fight Local Warming”.  I first saw this when I was over in Israel because it was delivered by this guy named Yossi Vardi.  He lives over there in the Middle East and what he talks about is the link between hot seats, laptops, cellphones, and sperm.  And in this video and perhaps we will actually play the audio clip of this video for you as you are listening in here in just a second.  But it talks about how studies have shown an increase of just one degree celsius can affect sperm formation in only fifteen minutes of laptop use produced that temperature rise in guy’s laps.  And the video goes into more detail but basically this is why I never ever put a laptop in my lap unless I’ve got one of those heat blocking EMF blocking pads underneath it.  This like the little pad you can buy off of like Amazon for example, I use one called the “HARApad”, that’s H-A-R-A pad.  But you should watch this video or listen to the clip that are about to play for you because it’s really quite interesting:

Audio:               Important health message: blogging maybe hazardous to your health especially if you are a male.  This message is given as a public service. Blogging affect your posture, we’ll start with your posture.  This is the posture of ladies who are not blogging; this is the posture of ladies who are blogging. (laughter)  This is the natural posture of a man sitting, squatting for ventilation purposes. (laughter)  And this is the natural posture of a standing man, and I think this picture inspired Chris to insert me into the lateral thinking session.  This is male blogging posture sitting, and the result is, “For greater comfort, men naturally sit with their legs farther apart than women, when working on laptop.  However, they will adopt a less natural posture in order to balance it on their laps, which resulted in a significant rise of body heat between their thighs.”  This is the issue of local warming. (Laughter)  This is a very serious newspaper; it’s Times of England — very serious.  This is a very — (Laughter) — gentlemen and ladies, be serious.  This is a very serious research, that…

Special Announcements:

Ben:                   Brock, this podcast is actually brought to you by a Super Starch – a non-GMO based cornstarch that goes through forty different laboratory base treatments to cause it to get absorbed extremely slowly by your body and give you this slow bleed of carbohydrate-based energy that keeps you in either: A. a fat burning zone or B. in ketosis, and you know what the name of that magical starches?

Brock:               I don’t Ben, tell me all about it.

Ben:                   I think you do, and you’re just playing.  It’s UCAN this podcast is actually brought to you by UCAN, that’s spelled U-C-A-N and generation UCAN Super Starch is the name of this special carbohydrates that keeps your blood sugar stable and delivers this steady energy so you could do something like: eat it as a pre-marathon or pre-race or like pre-triathlon or pre-endurance breakfast for example, you can mix it with some coconut milk for example, and have that for breakfast to keep you in fat-burning mode.


                           You can mix it into a water bottle and let you get away with eating about a quarter as many carbohydrates as you’d normally have to eat to keep your blood sugar levels maintain.  Really interesting stuff: very, very low amount of GI distress, will still enhancing fat burn and sustaining some pretty good energy.  They’re giving all of our listeners a 15% discount.  So you have absolutely no excuse, if you’re listening in not to try this stuff. The URL you can go to, to save 15% on the stuff that keeps you in fat-burning mode all day long is bengreenfieldfitness.com/UCAN. That’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/UCAN, so check it out and try out some UCAN for breakfast perhaps something to throw in for a week or so after the turkey day coming up tomorrow.

Brock:               Do try it a few times before you do it for serious because it put me into a fart-burning mode all day long in the first few times I tried it.

Ben:                   Yeah, use yourself into this stuff.  It is a very like complex carbohydrate that you got to get your body used to once you do.  It’s pretty magical. This podcast is also brought to you by Onnit.  And what we’re going to do now is play you a clip of myself and top Spartan athlete, Hunter McIntyre playing with Onnit toys in our basement.  Here you go:

 Ben:                  (AUDIO CLIP STARTS) If you, want to learn how to train for your obstacle races using all the unconventional training gear, it’s so, take it to Onnit.com and use 10% discount code: Obstacle Dominator.  You’ll save 10% off the steel bells, kettle bells with monkey faces on them, mason…

Hunter:            Mason rocks!

Ben:                   And other things that you can kill people with and make yourself stronger.  Onnit.com, 10% discount code: Obstacle Dominator.

                           So if you want the visual of what you just heard then check out the Youtube video that we’ll put in the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/300, but both Hunter and myself use a ton of Onnit fitness tools like maces, steel bells, primal bells, medicine bells and like I say in the video, other things that you could kill people with. And you save 10% off of all these strange and exotic fitness gear when you go to onnit.com/bengreenfield that will automatically knock 10% off your order so you can have your own dangerous fitness equipment at home and it’s actually pretty cool stuff.  And then next – now that we’ve got our strange and exotic sponsors out of the way: UCAN and Onnit.  As part of the celebration of our 300th podcast episode, Brock, we’re giving away something pretty cool.  I don’t even know if I told you about this yet, but the BioMat which is the infrared mat that basically shoves your recovery through the roof and does all sorts of things like enhance sleep, detox, it allows you to do what’s called hypothermic therapy without necessarily going to like an infrared sauna or hot sauna or something like that.  We’re giving away a BioMat Pro that’s like the sixteen hundred and fifty dollar BioMat.

Brock:               Wheew!

Ben:                   It’s over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/giveaway, this giveaway started this morning – the morning that we recorded this podcast.

Brock:               Which is, “How Ben Broke Twitter”.

Ben:                   Ah yeah, that’s how Twitter broke because every time you tweet the giveaway, you got three extra entries into the contest.  So you can blow up your ability to win this BioMat.  Also, there’s the special salts that you get with it.  They’re called the Detoxi Salts, they’re actually heated to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit 9 times over for 20 hours and what you get based on that is this pure, pure salt that’s packed with a bunch of minerals and micro-nutrients that has this really interesting detoxing property when you take just a few grams of it per day, so you can get the salts, you can get the BioMat – we are only giving away one of these packages ‘cause it’s literally over seventeen hundred dollars’ worth of prizes.  You can just go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/giveaway, and you enter your email over there and you’re automatically in to get some pretty cool stuff that all of your neighbors will be jealous of if they happen to know what a BioMat or Detoxi Salt pack is.

Brock:               That should happen to be in your bedroom when you’re getting naked to avoid diabetes on the bed or on the BioMat.

Ben:                   That’s right.  So, finally, a couple of other things, there are few events.


                           First of all, December 4th and 5th, I will be speaking down in San Diego at Mark Divine’s Unbeatable Mind Retreat.  There’s still time for you to get into that at bengreenfieldfitness.com/unbeatable.  I’ll be talking about how to biohack your environment, there’ll be bunch of other people there like Rob Wolfe, Mark Divine of course, me, Brock will be there…

Brock:               You won’t actually see me.  I’ll be hiding out with the little computers somewhere.

Ben:                   Yeah, so come hang-out at San Diego and then two days after that, I’ll be racing the Malibu Spartan and if you happen to live near L.A. or Malibu, come out do the Spartan.  It’ll be a blast.  Just a sprint, you can totally do it.  And then also December 15th through the 19th , is my online conference where I’ve got twenty-four.  It used to be twenty-three but I just added Dr. Mercola – Dr. Joseph Mercola from mercola.com and I will be talking about, how he lives his life so it’s like all his daily habits, the stuffs from Mercola that he implements into his own routine.  Really interesting interview, and so that’s all gonna be in the free online conference I’m doing over at bengreefieldfitness.com/RevYourself .  And then finally, if you want to head over to the Middle East, I’ll be speaking in Dubai. January 30th through the 31st – and that would be two days Superhuman Seminar that I’m teaching.  So pretty intensive but if you’re into fitness training, natural remedies, health – any of that kinda stuff, this is gonna be a pretty awesome two-day workshop, I’ll be teaching over in Dubai.  And we’ll put a link to that and oh so much more, over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/300.  So, check it all out.

Brock:               Check it out!

Listener’s Q&A:

E:                       Hi, it’s E here from Auckland, New Zealand.  I’d like to thank Ben for his work, it’s been fantastic and helped me a huge amount last season when we had a fund-raising gear with the three of New Zealand’s iconic events.  We did the swim nohava which is a 3.2 case.  Ride around Taupo which is a hundred sixty case, a lot.  And we run the marathon, I used the – I’m in Training program because all of it have been worth and done for a one month period.  Also, it suits me really nicely for a half marathon leading up to the event and then neither it stays me up in my first half Ironman which took me more than half hours of quite 28, nothing special.  But I’m an age grouper and that can be pretty well in that field.  And mostly there, I’ve enjoyed the race with the low training hours for the competition hours that I did and in particular the strings worked.  The strings would suit me up nicely, it helped me, I mean, my peer and myself, and the people like with injuries, and like to thank me in the game and certainly very highly recommended.

Ben:                   Awesome. And speaking of tri-ripped.com Brock, I’ve got you doing some pretty narrowly ripped workouts yourself.

Brock:               Uhmm. I’m pretty sore.  I’m having trouble raising my arms above my shoulders right now.

Ben:                   Yeah.  I’m bringing this up because Brock asked me, for those who don’t know, I coached Brock and one of the things that we always do in the off-season is re-introducing new program for Brock to do.  And now he’s doing a five by five.

Brock:               Last winter you had me doing that Mass Made Simple variation on Dan John’s program and that was awesome.  I didn’t get super swoll but I sure got strong.

Ben:                   Yeah, for those of you who don’t know what five by five is, it’s very, very basic.  I’ll put a link in the show notes to the basic page where you can – it’s at stronglifts.com or you can download the basic “5X5 Workout”.  It’s just the way to get very strong and put on some muscle mass pretty quickly in a very simple way.  So essentially, you use free weights, not machines.  You do compound multi-joint exercises – not single-joint isolation exercises and you always add weight, you never add reps.  So, you’re not training for muscle pump, you’re not training for soreness, you’re just adding weight.  Now the original 5X5 routine was comprised of three exercises that are put into two full body workouts.  And one workout was squat, bench press, and a barbell row.  And then the other workout was a squat, an overhead press, and a dead lift.  The “5X5 Workout” that I’ve got Brock doing, we’re putting all five of those lists: the squat, the bench, the overhead press, the dead lift, and we’re actually doing a clean instead of a row, but you do five sets of five reps of each of those exercises and you do that two to three times a week with very heavy weights and that’s it, it’s super simple.


All the other workouts for example that I’ve got Brock doing are mobility workouts, some fasted morning cardio, a couple of high intensity intervals, one day that’s just yoga with some deep breathing, and then like kinda like an easy light type of nature walk, or just get out in the neature – exploring neature.

Brock:               Why do you say it like that?

Ben:                   Have you seen the neature videos on Youtube?

Brock:               No.

Ben:                   Oh!  You gotta watch it.  Go to Youtube and do search for neature guy – nature guy, but it’s pretty funny, it’s pretty hilarious actually.  If you’re listening in and also go to Youtube and do search for nature guy, you will laugh your butt off.  Anyways though, the “5X5 Workout” that I’ve got Brock doing is a little bit of a twist on the traditional “5X5 Workout” because rather than just sitting on his butt reading magazines or watching TV as he rests in between…

Brock:               Which is what I normally do when I’m working out.

Ben:                   Well, that’s actually what you see a lot of folks who are doing “5X5 Workout” right, they finished the five reps and they just kinda chill.  But instead, I’ve got mobility throwing in between each of the different test that you do.  So for example, if you’re gonna do five sets of five squats in between each set of the squats, rather than just sitting around, you do for example bird dogs, which is where you get down to a crawl position and you extend right arm and left leg then left arm and right leg ten times. And then in between your bench press, you’ll do something like a foam roller for the back or an abdominal movement or something else that is putting work into your body, and making your body better but still allowing that muscle that you work during the “5X5” to recover.  So I call the five by five workout with mobility.  So basically, that’s what Brock’s doing; got him sweating a few days a week with the 5X5.

Brock:               Yeah.  And one of the interesting recovery runs you had me doing is when I’m doing the dead lifts.  You’ve got me doing like box jumps.  It doesn’t necessarily seem like a recovery activity.  What’s the theory there?

Ben:                   I will admit that there are a few of the 5X5 exercises where I am jacking a heart rate up a little bit.  So occasionally, one of the things, there’s two exercises that’ll mix with the dead lift sometimes.  Mix it with box jumps or mix it with rows.  I’ll make a concept too.  And if you want to make your 5X5 Workout super hard, you do your five sets of heavy dead lifts but in between each dead lift, you either do ten box jumps, or you do a 250 meter row and it turns it into a little bit more of a Sufferfest.  So that was just my evil twist, Brock.

Brock:               I actually – I really enjoyed that one – that was fun.  My living room was a disaster after I finished the workout the other day.

Ben:                   ‘Cause you throw up all over it?

Brock:               Yeah.  I burped everywhere, it’s awesome.  Actually it smelled really bad too ‘cause I’ve started using, by up and following your lead and started using coconut oil as my deodorant just because, I’ve worked my way through all over of the natural “deodorants” that I can possibly find and they all make me smell worst than if I wear no deodorant at all.  So I thought, “Oh may I give the coconut oil a try”.  And now my living room and actually right now, my office just smells like BO and coconut.

Ben:                   Like a giant, stinky cookie.  I like it.

Brock:               The cookie that you would not feed your worst enemy.

Bryan:               Hey Ben and Brock, it’s Bryan here from South Africa.  Thanks for the great show and keep bringing us that awesome content.  Recently, I was exposed to the term called glycobiology and I was wondering what your thoughts were on the matter and if you see this important as some people are saying it is for the future of our health.  Thanks a lot!  Cheers!

Brock:               I have never heard the term glycobiology before.

Ben:                   You idiot.

Brock:               I’d said dumb.  Apparently you know, I don’t listen to any podcast about like about health and fitness, and science or anything like that.  So really, like it’s not a surprise.

Ben:                   Glycobiology!

Brock:               Is that something you do with the Kardashian?

Ben:                   You have to say it as if you’re narrating like a 1960 science video.

Brock:               Glycobiology is one of the most important processes you’ll cross in scientific history.

Ben:                   Researchers all over the world are now looking into glycobiology as a way to fight the cold war and stop nuclear disasters.  Forever, glycobiology! Even the housewives are using glycobiology in all the latest and greatest cooking methods.  How’s that?

Brock:               That was awesome. You’ve been…

Ben:                   Okay.

Brock:               Distortion was appropriate.

Ben:                   Glycobiology.  Actually – so here’s the deal with glycobiology.  If you define glycobiology, it’s just the biology of sugar chains, okay?  That’s like glycans or what are called sugar chains.  In biology, you might also know the “misaccharides” like monosaccharides or disaccharides or polysaccharides.                                   


                           And there’s a lot of different ways that sugars can be stuck together.  Now, the deal with glycobiology is that it’s a growing field… for in – and I’m gonna try and explain this in a way that’s not super duper confusing, but there are molecules called glycoconjugates in your body which are all these different kind of sugars that are stuck together, and typically when someone is developing a drug or pharmaceutical or something that’s going to act upon one of these sugars, they focus on not the core chain of the sugar.  What would be called – if you’re thinking about it like a tree with a bunch of branches coming out of it, they’re not focusing on the scaffolding on the tree itself but rather on all of the different branches.  That’s what a drug or a pharmaceutical would work on, so they’re focusing more on the things coming off of the tree than the tree itself or what would be considered the scaffold.  So, when you look at glycobiology, what scientist now finding is that, you can actually – you can target the tree itself rather than the branches coming off the tree when you’re looking at one of these biomolecules.  One of these what are called glycoconjugates.  So, what that means is that, we all of a sudden can develop a bunch of new potential ways to fight against cancer, or potential for example, vaccinations would be another field where these could come into play, even ways that we could figure out how to fight against chronic diseases like diabetes for example by targeting the tree rather than the branches coming off the tree.  That’s basically glycobiology is.  I know this is probably super duper boring for those who tuned to this podcast that you can burn fat faster, run faster.  But the idea here is that, they’re now developing anti-flu drugs, anti-cancer drugs, etc. that focused on the core of these glycan chains rather than the sugars themselves.  And that’s basically what glycobiology is.

Brock:               Cool!

Ben:                   As far as whether or not it’s the wave of the future, etc.  I have no clue.  I do know that the – what they called the glycomix market which is a market that’s focused on like drug discovery and development and immunology, and oncology and other applications that you can use glycobiology for.  It does seem to be exploding.  There’s a recent article and I don’t know if this is the article that Bryan read, but it was a recent article that came out that showed that the glycobiology or what’s called the glycomix market is going to be exploding to almost a billion dollars by 2019 in terms of all the different types of enzymes and instruments and kits that are being created to allow you to target the core of the sugar rather than the sugar chains themselves.  So, ultimately I think it’s an interesting question but considering that in most cases especially on this podcast, we’re looking for natural solutions rather than drugs anyways, I mean I’m all about preventive living when it comes to cancer and diabetes.  So, I’m still pretty obsessed with the whole – like sleeping naked and getting sunshine thing that I am on developing glycobiology based drugs, but if you’re an investor, looking for a field to invest in, it does seem to be quite promising and explosive when it comes to something that could blow up in the future as far as health research and the development of new drugs.

Brock:               Where’s my checkbook?

Jonas:               Hi, my name is Jonas Lurkpin, I’m biking in mountain bike to work everyday and I’ve done so for many years.  And I would like to know how my sitting position should be not from – yeah, from the point of view of not getting any injuries later on.  So, not from biking the postures or anything, but not to have problems with my back or my shoulders or anything else.  So, how should my shoulders be placed?  Should I have a straight back or curve back?  How should my saddle be positioned?  So, just – I don’t wanna wake up 10 years from now and learn that – you should have been sitting like this, so that’s why you have this bad injury or whatever.


                           So, any thoughts on this.  Thanks a lot for a great show.  Bye!

Brock:               I like Jonas’ style.  He’s not worried about going fast, he’s not worried about being maximum, efficiency, or anything.  He just doesn’t wanna screw himself over.

Ben:                   That’s right.  So, you think he’s talking literally about like his crotchal function?

Brock:               I think he’s talking about everything.

Ben:                   Like testicles…

Brock:               Yeah, he doesn’t wanna have a broken back and knees, and testicles.

Ben:                   Yeah, what I mean, we can start with the big obvious here and that’s the fact that a bike seat for both men and women puts pressure on a bunch of a nerves and blood vessels that are in your – what’s called your perineal area and then for men it’s the back of your scrotum.  And that has been shown the cause and pretty big problems like mountain biking for example, because the rough terrain can cause some really severe problems.  They had one study that show that 96% of male mountain bikers have what are called scrotal abnormalities.  Add that one to vernacular…

Brock:               That’s very much everybody.

Ben:                   Yeah, like calcium deposits and what are called sperm containing cysts and twisted veins, and all sorts of nasty issues…

Brock:               What’s it called again?

Ben:                   Scrotal abnormalities…

Brock:               Yikes.

Ben:                   I think you have a new name for your band…

Brock:               Yes!  Totally.

Ben:                   Yes.  So, there’s another study that found the impact of cycling on the groin could lead to small scars within the scrotum and lower sperm production.  Last week we talked about how being a vegan can lower sperm production and it turns out – probably the worst thing you could do is be a crappy vegan mountain biker when it comes to sperm.

Brock:               That uses a laptop without a pad.

Ben:                   Yeah, or you could do that and avoid ever having a vasectomy again.  So, yeah, low sperm count and scrotal abnormalities from cycling and then aside from contact with the bike seat itself, you get a bunch of heat generated in the groin area and that also impair your sperm functions.  So, there’s that and then there’s also of course the potential damage to your testicles and the surrounding area and that specifically nerve damage.  This is why when I would train for Ironman and I do my longer bike days, I’d come home and my wife could have been wearing like a negligee lying on a bed of rose petals with some sexy jazz music playing and I wouldn’t have been able to do a thing about it because of the neuropathy, the nerve damage that can occur when you are riding for long periods of time essentially you can get impotent for short periods of time which I think a lot of guys for example been riding for long periods of time, and it can affect women’s ability to orgasm or experience pleasure in other regions as well.  Just because that neuropathy – that nerve damage…  So, you’ve got what’s called the pudendal nerve and that’s between your genitals and your anus, and it’s responsible for sending information to your gonads and all the surrounding area, and the bike seat put direct pressure.  Traditional bikes puts direct pressure on that pudendal nerve, and so you essentially are kind of turning off all the nerves in that area of your body.  So…

Brock:               Excuse me, I’m just gonna throw my bicycle away…. Now.

Ben:                   So when it comes to sperm production, impotence, neuropathy, things of that nature, you just go for a noseless saddle.  I mean, those are pretty easy to find these days.  My favorite is a company called ISM, they make a saddle called Adamo and it’s just a noseless saddle.  And it’s very, very comfortable, I’ve discovered it a couple of years ago.  That’s primarily what I use.  A lot of other bicycle seat manufacturers are switching to sure noseless now.  So, that’s probably the best bet if you’re concerned about this from like a sexual function standpoint.

Brock:               So when you’re sitting on that one, your weight isn’t on your pubic bone, it’s on your seat bone?  Where?  What are you seating on right now?

Ben:                   You’re essentially spread across what would be called your ischial tuberosity or kinda like the outside bones of your pelvic bone and you’re not on your perineum or the softer of your crotch.  So, essentially your entire weight is supported by your pelvic bone which makes sense.  As far as other issues with the bike, obviously, when you’re sitting for long periods of time, hunch over computer for example, right, your shoulders are hunched forward, you’re leaning forward, your hip flexors are shortened, and if you think about it, you are replicating that position when you are on a bike, especially if you’re like a triathlete for example riding in a time travel position hunched over your aero bars for a long period of time.  I think that the benefits especially from a cardio vascular, and happiness, and getting out in nature, and getting the wind in your face and sun on your skin standpoint, I think all of those pros outweigh the cons like not biking, but I do think that from a biomechanical standpoint, you have to do things to reverse some of the potential muscle imbalances that can build up when you’re riding.


                           Doing things like seated rows so that you’re pulling your shoulders back after they’ve been hunched over on a bicycle.  Doing things like some really, really good lunging hip flexor openers, or better yet using for example, this is something I really like, the Core Foundation book by Dr. Eric Goodman, or The Core Foundation DVDs by Dr. Eric Goodman.  I think every cyclist and every runner should be doing those as part of their program at least once a week.  I personally do them 2-3 times a week.  So I alternate every morning between doing Yoga one morning for 10-15 minutes, and doing this core foundation exercises by Dr. Eric Goodman, 2-3 times a week.  And that’s a really, really good way to open up all the muscles that tend to get shortened when you either riding a bike or you’re hunched over computer.  Two things that are part of my life and so I do those in addition to making sure to do a lot of pulling.  So, seated rows, pull ups, things of that nature, and then I’ll stop every once in a while and do like a standing hip flexor stretch.  So, those would be the two main things that come to mind would be muscle imbalances, and then some potential danger to the crotches of our dear listeners.

                           So, what I’ll do in the show notes, we will want them – over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/300, I’ll put a link to the ISM Adamo Saddle page.  We can go kinda peruse some of their noseless saddles and then also the Core Foundation book that I was just talking about, if you want some resources and you’re a bicyclist who doesn’t want to be impotent with an ugly body.

Mark:                Hi Ben and Brock, Mark from Philadelphia.  I ride lots of my isometric bicycle and I always have water bottles.  I’ve seen some articles recently suggesting that even non-BPA plastics are dangerous to your health.  I’m wondering if you have any recommendations at what water bottles to use.  Thank you and hope to hear from you soon.

Brock:               So, I guess first of all, why is BPA bad?  Why are we concern about that in the first place?

Ben:                   Well, BPA is essentially – it’s like an estrogen mimicker in the body.  And that’s something that we’ve known for a long time that BPA or Bisphenol A is basically a hormonal disruptor and you know, they’ve done a huge, huge number of studies in terms of cell culture studies as well as in vivo studies in humans and epidemiological studies and they’ve certainly found out that from an endocrinology standpoint, that BPA disrupts hormone production and can also cause for example estrogen dominance in both men and women.  They’ll be like man boobs in men and weight gain in women, potential autoimmune issues, basically creating a hyper-reactive immune systems.  So you’ve got increased risk for things like asthma and acne, and things of that nature.  And even like this combination of diabetes and obesity called diabesity and there’s a whole number of environmental toxins and chemicals, and plastic that can contribute to obesity because when you are expose to plastics, toxins, things that your body can’t metabolize, you tend to store that in fat tissue.  So your body creates new fat cells to store that.  So, a huge number of issues when it comes to non-BPA based plastic, and that’s why there are certain plastics that you should avoid.  So if you’re looking like a plastic bottle, there are typically 7 different numbers that you could see and each of those numbers reflect something different, like plastic number 1 is what you’d see in the big like 2 liter soda bottles or like peanut bottle jars like it’s the thicker plastic.  It’s kinda rigid, but it’s relatively light weight, the problem is that that can break down when it gets exposed to heat or when it gets exposed to light.  So, plastic number 1 is one that can be dangerous if you’ve got like illegal water bottle in your car, and it gets hot for example, and that’s plastic number, not such a great thing.  That’s one that can breakdown and build up in your body and that would be one n0n-BPA played plastic.  Plastic number 2, that would be the type of plastic you’d find in detergent bottle or like a milk jug.  It’s a really sturdy plastic.  It’s a little bit less leaching, so technically from a plastic standpoint, it is a safer plastic than number 1.  So, the number 2 is called high density polyethylene, you still get some leaching but it’s not bad for beverage and food storage.  And it’s a little bit more dishwasher safe, it’s a little bit more able to withstand high temperatures.  I’m still going to give you some alternatives to plastics that we personally use in our house but if you had to choose plastics like number 2, isn’t that bad.


                           Plastic number 3 is what you’d find in plastic pipes.  You’d find it in shrink wraps, you’d find in like salad dressing containers, it’s called polyvinyl chloride and that one is pretty bad one.  It contains thalates and those mimic human hormones and are pretty bad, and if they wash out into the water, they affect fish, they affect ocean life.  That’s kind of a nasty one.  So, that’s polyvinyl chloride.

Brock:               Isn’t PBC what we made – what we use for plumbing and houses?

Ben:                   Yup, exactly.

Brock:               Ew, that’s not cool.

Ben:                   Yeah, not such a great solution.  You know, especially if it gets heated up.  So, another one is plastic number 4, that’s called low density polyethylene.  You’ll find that in like trash can liners like garbage can liners, stuff like that.  It’s pretty flexible, it’s relatively microwave-proof, relatively dishwasher safe, relatively heat stable and kinda like number 2, one of the least damaging of the plastics.  So number 2 and number 4 are two okay numbers.  Number 5 is another one, it’s called polypropylene, and  you’re gonna find that like in bottle cups, drinking straws, stuff like that.  That’s also pretty resistant to heat, and a decent option.  So, two, four and five so far are the decent ones.  One and three especially if you’re gonna drink out of them or eat out of them, would be ones to avoid.  Number 6 is polystyrene, and that’s like Styrofoam basically.  So, you’re gonna find that like star foam peanuts and in some plastic tableware, and like those “to go” containers that you get from the Chinese restaurants.  That is a major component of plastic debris in the ocean where it gets pretty toxic for marine life, it’s hard to recycle, it’s not one of I’m a fan of using just or for the consideration of our planet.  So, plastic number 6 basically Styrofoam, not a good one. Plastic number 7 is basically anything else.  It’s like food containers made out of something called black sand, Tupperware, it’s pretty much any of the plastic that’s not number 1 through number 6.  Polycarbonate is probably the most well known one and it leaches a lot of BPA.  Most plastics number 7s are not all that great.  So, two, four, and five would be kinda the better plastics to use, if you’re gonna use a plastic.  But then there was this relatively new form of plastic that popped up in the past decade, considered to be a safe plastic, a BPA-free plastic that was supposed to be really heat stable, really chemical resistant, really resistant to plastic degradation, and it was made by – well, it’s branded as something called Tritan – t-r-i-t-a-n.  And it’s also known as copolyester, and Tritan is something that you’ll find used by like Nalgene, and CamelBak and a lot of these other companies that are making BPA-free products.  One of the problems though is that there was a recent study that found that BPA is not free of what’s called astrogenic activity which means that it can actually be a hormonal disruptor and what we thought BPA-free plastic specifically were safe, they are indeed potentially harmful and can leach and aren’t necessarily the safest thing on the face of the planet if you want every advantage possible.  There’s even some evidence that some of these BPA-free plastics might be even more estrogenic than BPA itself especially if they get heated.  So, it really is kind of an issue especially if you’re putting these BPA-free plastics into the microwave or into a dishwasher, or leaving it out in the dashboard of your car, in the sun.  They actually did a bunch of tests on this and found that just like normal contact with food or water in a slightly heated situations was enough for the chemicals to leach into the food and into the water.  So it’s kinda ironic that you know, for example we’ve all been lead to believe that Nalgene bottles are the ones to buy when in fact that may not be the case.  So, as far as what we do in our house, when we pack lunch for our kids for example, a couple of things we do.  We use something called LunchBots which are stainless steel containers that we put their food into.  So Jessa, when she sends the kids off to school puts – like she makes like little sushi rolls a lot of times, like carrots and celeries, some flax seed crackers, sometimes like some hummus or some type of like a goat cheese…

Brock:               Did you learn how to say that when you were in Israel?

Ben:                   Yes.  Hummus semetaneous chima.  So, yes!  Aflafol.


                           Anyways though, so Jessa makes the kids a lunch the night before they go to school, and she puts them into these LunchBots which are stainless steel, and you can get those at like Amazon.  I’ll put links in the show notes if you want to go to like the LunchBots page on Amazon, and that’s one thing that we use them for their water.  We use a stainless steel container for them called Klean Kanteen

Brock:               I’ve seen those all over the place.

Ben:                   Yeah, and Klean Kanteen makes water bottles too not just for kids but also for adults.  And that’s again a stainless steel container and that or like drinking out of glass maison jars, or glass jars, or glass cups is a much, much better bet than plastic.  We use Pyrex containers in our house for storing food and those are just glass containers.  The lid itself is plastic but when you think about it, that’s not as big of a deal because typically the lid isn’t coming in contact with the food.  Unless you’re like me and you put way, way too much food in these glass containers, and then you shove the lid on, and of course the lid…

Brock:               So they need set to avoid the top layer.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah, just don’t lick the lid.  But Pyrex glass containers are really good for storing food along with glass maison jars and then Klean Kanteen’s the stainless steel version for drinking fluids and water and you can use those on a bicycle too by the way.  And then, LunchBots for actually packing food for again for kids or adults, if you’re going to the office or whatever with packed lunch.  Those LunchBots worked pretty well.  So, those are some of the better alternatives.  You know, it’s still one of those things were as really, really tough especially if you’re an athlete who’s competing in events where they’re gonna be handing a plastic bottle no matter what.  You gotta grab that, you gotta drink out of it, and you gotta roll with the punches, right.  You can’t live life in a bubble but try as much as possible especially when you’re at home and you can control the environment to use glass and stainless steel.  And that’s what we do.

Johan:               Hello!  My question is rather complicated one regarding hormones.  The positive effects related to fasting seems to be quite evident.  You have an effect for instance with human growth hormone, as well as for instance your boost to your immune systems.  Possibly “rebooting” completely or you can use the system of 24 hours of fasting, and – so the question is – if you’re doing this fasting 24 hours and training, and by training getting positive effects via testosterone, that seems to be really powerful way of combining health and training.  If it is, that the case for several and secondly, is there a reason to suspect that that could be a good thing also for kids.  Maybe they instead need to really get into fat burning load that’s reducing also insulin growth factor 1 that seems to be a very, very negative aspect of carbs loading, and carbs diet, and for kids it seems like insulin growth factors, one contributing factor for them entry into puberty too early reduce tight so…

Brock:               Alright everybody, go into your closet and find your propeller hat.  I feel that this one is going to get scien-cy.

Ben:                   Nah, actually I’ll try and keep this – this [0:53:41.0] ______ one that I want.  Actually I lied, I’m not gonna keep that simple.

Brock:               Okay, go for it.

Ben:                   So, here’s the deal.  There was recently a research study that was released by Brad Schoenfeld, I think it was on the National Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, and it talked about how both fasted and non-fasted exercise can improve body composition and that both of them are relatively equal when it comes to burning body fat.  I actually tweeted about this and I noted that it would have been interesting to see some of the biohacks that I use and that I encourage my clients and our listeners to use when they’re doing fasted exercise, right.  Like doing your fasted exercise after a cold shower, so that you’ll increase your activity of brown adipose tissue or doing your fasted exercise with caffeine in your system so that you get a slight upregulation of fatty acid oxidation, right.  So, you’ll like you take a cold shower, you have a cup of coffee, and then you do like your fasted exercise after that.  So some of those little biohacks when taken into consideration in that study.  But the other thing that wasn’t taken into consideration was that fasted exercise goes way above and beyond just like trying to burn a little extra body fat.  And there’s a lot of cool things that happen when you exercise in a fasted state.


                           So, one of the things that that does indeed happen when we look at this from like a potential body composition standpoint is, when you fast you get improved insulin sensitivity.  So as most of us know, when you eat, your body releases insulin which is a hormone which helps you absorb the nutrients from your food, which helps you for example shove glucose in the muscle tissue or into liver or even sometimes the fat cells to be use as energy later on.  And, your amount of insulin sensitivity that you have and the need for more or less insulin is affected by fasting and fasting specifically improves insulin sensitivity.  The other thing that it does though is that, it increases production of human growth hormone and there was one study that showed that 24 hours without food increased growth hormone production by 2,000% in men and by 1300% in women.

Brock:               Wow!

Ben:                   And in addition to that, it has an effect on testosterone, meaning it increases testosterone and that is probably because of that increased in human growth hormone.  So, the thing is, as far as human growth hormone, that increase in human growth hormone helps to preserve muscle tissue, for anabolic – it helps you store more energy and more like nutrient substrate is glycogen, rather as fat, and it helps you engage in lipolysis.  So you break down your own fat, you release free fatty acids and glycerol, and then you metabolize those to create energy.  And they’ve seen that human growth hormone will increase even after an overnight fast, but it was something like intermittent fasting, for example you stop eating at 7PM and you start eating again like 8AM or 9AM.  Thirteen hours is the shortest period of time that’s been shown to cause a really significant increase in human growth hormone production by your pituitary gland.  So you don’t have to do a full day fast, you can even do intermittent fasting to increase this human growth hormone.  Now, so just stepping back here – we know that fasting can increase human growth hormone and testosterone.  We also know, and I talked about this quite a bit in my book “Beyond Training”, that fasting can decrease inflammation, that it can decrease the rate of which telomere shortens, so it has like an anti-aging effect, it can help with burning fatty acids depending on whether or not you’re using some of these biohacks I talked about earlier.  And so, there’s a lot of benefits.  Johan asks a couple interesting questions.  First of all he says – if you are fasting and training to get the positive effects of testosterone, is that a powerful way to combine health and training?  Now, here is the issue.  The studies that have shown people to have an increase in human growth hormone when they fast, we’re not necessarily looking at hard and heavy training in a fasted state.  They’re just looking at fasting itself.  Once you throw in hard training as a way to increase growth hormone or increase testosterone when fasted, then you’re putting your body into a potentially catabolic state.  And this is why I’m a fan of – if you’re going to exercise in a fasted state, keeping things very aerobic and I actually just wrote an article for quickanddirtytips.com about how the best scenario is to find your fat burning zone, which is generally the heart rate at which you start to breathe hard, and your muscle start to burn, you take that heart rate and you subtract 20 beats.  And that’s your approximate fat burning zone and that would be the zone at which you’d exercise when you’re in a fasted state, if you want to avoid that catabolic effect where you would potentially have a unfavorable testosterone to cortisol ratio.  So, that’s one thing to bear in mind – is that combining fasting and training is okay and you could still get some of the human growth hormone boosting effects of fasting but you wouldn’t want to do lots of hard and heavy training – like weight training or high intensity interval training in that fasted state.  Now once we jump into kids, and helping to control insulin like growth factor in kids, this is a really interesting consideration whether or not kids should be fasting to control IGF1 and to increase their human growth hormone.  So, here’s – I’ll get into why kids are potentially going to puberty earlier and some of the issues with HGH and IGF1 to kinda step back and give you the big picture for those of you who aren’t aware of this problem.


                           Basically kids are going through puberty much earlier nowadays.  Now as far as what’s normal, girls have always developed earlier than boys.  Usually we see girls go through period like between the age of 8 and 12, and boys somewhere between like 9 and 14 years old.  But the new normal based off studies that they’ve done, have found that girls are going through puberty like 8 or 9 years old and boys are going through puberty a little bit before the age of 10.  So it changed really, really significantly.  Like in – if you look at one study, they found that in 1860 – the year 1860, the average age of the onset of puberty in girls was 16 years old, and then in 1920, it was 14 years old, and then in 1950, it was 13 years old, and in 1980 it was 12 years old, and by 2010 it drops to 10 years old.  And so, in an African-American girls, like it was going on an 8 years old, and for Asian girls, it was dropping around 9 years old.  So, really, really weird trend in this onset of puberty.  As far as why, there’s a lot of different speculation as to why.  They’re saying it’s stress – physical, emotional, relationship, and lifestyle stress based on us living on a more stressful environment could potentially one of the reasons for this.  They say that light cycles, like longer periods of time spent to artificial light especially at night having that body in a constant, basically would be called a constant summer state, could potentially cause this.  Chemical exposure, some of the plastics that we talked about earlier as well as the hormones and chemicals that we find in meats and milks and things of that nature, could also be causing this.  It’s probably a cluster of symptoms.  It’s really, really tough to say but one of the bigger issues here would likely be endocrine disruptors that we find in a lot of the plastics that I just got done talking about as well as any environmental chemical pollutant like herbicides, pesticides, a lot of the plastic preservatives that are found in cosmetic products, plastic toys, hairsprays, deodorants, car fresheners, shampoo, nail polish, perfumes.  We just took our kids to Disneyland yesterday and when I took them there because we’re on vacation in Long Beach right now, when we took them there they gave us like a car air freshener like when we came in through the parking lot, and the first thing that I did was pull up and throw it in the garbage can, and my boys like – why, that’s smell nice dad.  I’m like – it smells nice guys but actually that nice smell is really, really bad for you.  I just toss in the trash like car air fresheners are one of those things among others that are one of these issues when it comes to a lot of these environmental pollutants that could potentially be causing us to go through puberty earlier.  There’s one really, really interesting study where there is this chemical spill of an insecticide called DDT, it’s like a mosquito spray and what happen was they had a chemical spill and alligators, the male alligators living in the lake started going to puberty earlier and I have no clue how they study that, or why they studies it or how you actually were grabbing alligators and seeing how early they went through puberty and somewhat curling that to a chemical spill but…

Brock:               They’re looking into their armpits to see if they had hair yet.

Ben:                   Yes, exactly.  So, seeing when they start rebelling against their parents.  But basically, really, really interesting.  So, it’s probably very chemical based.  Now, one of the things that we know is that when you get increased exposure to hormones specifically the type of things you would find in some of these endocrine disruptors and endocrine mimickers and also in like meats and like milk from commercial dairy and stuff like that, you get an increase in insulin like growth factor, which is also known as IGF.  And this increase in IGF1 can be one of the things that also correlates to an increase in human growth hormone and causes you to go through puberty earlier.  So, when we step back and look at this, an increase in human growth hormone or an increase in IGF1 brought on by for example, a long periods of time spent fasting would not necessarily be a way to control puberty in kids.  If we’re thinking about from a logical standpoint, you know, putting kids through fasted scenarios like that might actually cause an earlier onset of puberty by causing an increase production of human growth hormone, and possibly an increase in some of the insulin growth factor as well.  I think that might be a much, much better idea to just give your kids LunchBots, stainless steel containers, glass food, you know, detox your house, use natural personal care products and household cleaning chemicals.


                           Keep them away from mosquito repellants and herbicides, and pesticides by giving them organic fruits and vegetables, and a lot type of stuff rather than having your kids fast which I think potentially could cause them to go through puberty earlier, unless I am confusing Johan’s question here.  I think this is basically not such a good idea to have your kids fast plus they’d probably hate you anyways, if you have them fast for a long periods of time.  But yeah, I mean, that’s the big pictures, that kinda make sense?

Brock:               Yeah, yeah!  Actually that was remarkably easy to follow even though it was very scien-cy.

Ben:                   Remarkably?  Yes!

Brock:               My propeller hat is working well today.

Ben:                   Well, if you saw my podcasting environment today, you would understand why I’m so – is cogant the word?  Cogent?

Brock:               Cogent, yes.

Ben:                   Cogent, yes.  Why I’m so cogent.  I’m actually standing right now which of course we all know that increases your brain derived neurotrophic factor that makes you smarter, but I’m standing in a small bedroom of a rented house in Long Beach with my microphone propped up on four pillows.  My laptop on a chair, with the chair on top of the bed, and then children running around and playing downstairs.  It’s really, really interesting scenario.

Brock:               It does sound like you’re recording in a kindergarten.

Ben:                   Yes.  There are children playing downstairs with the podcast audience sounds a little bit different today that’s why it’s vacation…

Brock:               Blame Disneyland…

Ben:                   … vacation Long Beach.  That’s right blame Disneyland.  So, anyways though, resources for all of the stuff.  We’re going to put them over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/300, a long for the discount for UCAN, the discount for Onnit, some of the studies that we talked about, the Unbeatable Mind Retreat, the getaway in Dubai, my Rev Yourself Conference, and all the other things that we’d talked about during the Q and A.  But then also, we are going to send out an official Ben Greenfield fitness gear pack to one lucky listener, as they say in Canada, Hasa!  Or as we say here in America, Hooray!

Brock:               What you say, Yahoo!

Ben:                   Happy, happy, joy, joy!

Brock:               Yeehah!

Ben:                   Yeehah!  So anyways, we have a review from Blueteo, who says – “How my mornings went from simple to super.”  What do you think, Brock?  You wanna take this one?

Brock:               Uh hmm.  It goes like this: “Dear Ben and Brock, this podcast seriously revolutionized my life.  I never thought I’d go out and buy Himalayan crystals salt lamp and an air purifier until the day you guys rewired my brain to take control of my environment, of the environment I live in.  Also, I switched to Doctor Bronner’s soap and I noticed it has relieved my hives that would occasionally break out.”  That’s good.  Nobody wants hives.

Ben:                   Yeah!  Little TMI but okay.

Brock:               He didn’t say where.  Uh, I’m assuming it’s a guy… “I learn so much from you guys.  I want to thank you guys for an awesome show that I eagerly wait for every Wednesday and Saturday while I eat my morning, acai?”

Ben:                   Acai bowl…

Brock:               What’s acai bowl?

Ben:                   It’s like a bowl that has like acai berries and like fruits and stuff in it.

Brock:               Hmm, delicious.

Ben:                   Yeah, very hippy.

Brock:               “…and sit next to the hot oven on a cold fall morning.  Thanks!”  –  Mateo.

Ben:                   Wow!

Brock:               Is that some sort of a sign off like, Namaste!  Mateo!

Ben:                   No, I think that’s Mateo’s actual name.  That’s a lot of stuff: a Himalayan crystals salt lamp, an air purifier, Dr. Bronner’s soap for your hives, sorry about those.  Your morning acai bowl, and your hot oven on a cold fall morning.  Amazing!  Wow!  This guy is like a walking and talking testimonial for everything that we’ve ever recommended on the podcast.

Brock:               Hmm, Mateo!

Ben:                   So yeah, Mateo!  Write us an email, [email protected].  Send us your address and we are going to send you a cool tech t-shirt, a  water bottle, and a beanie cap.  And so, if you’re listening in and you also are covered in Dr. Bronner’s soap, sitting next to your Himalayan crystal salt lamp and hunched over eating out of your acai bowl, hopefully with a bamboo spoon, not a plastic spoon, then you can leave your review at iTunes and if you hear us read your review, then we will send you a sweet Ben Greenfield fitness gear pack or you can just support the show by going to bengreenfieldfitness.com/gear and order a pack for yourself.  So, that being said…


Brock:               I’ll go ahead and start saying that at the end of every Yoga class, I just be like…  Mateo.

Ben:                   Mateo…

Brock:               Mateo….

Ben:                   So, bengreenfieldfitness.com/giveaway, get on that biomat contest, for our American listeners – Happy Turkey Day/Thanksgiving!  For our UK listeners, sorry that we kicked the red coats butt 200 some odd years ago, and we are now… so why we’re celeb… was that 4th of July?  I forget.

Brock:               What?  I don’t know what you’re talking about.  Thanksgiving…

Ben:                   I’m getting my history mixed up.  Thanksgiving is when we came over with the programs and that…

Brock:               That’s when you brought small pox and what…

Ben:                   Yeah!  All those small nuts and a cornets with the Native Americans so…

Brock:               Yeah, which is a really nice thing to celebrate… our freedom.

Ben:                   But still I’m gonna snow ball over our London listeners about how we beat the red coats.

Brock:               I could bring up the time that Canadians burnt down the White House in the war of 1812.

Ben:                   Yes, and tell all of our Native American listeners, thank you for teaching us about popcorn… uhm…

Brock:               … and sorry.

Ben:                   And sorry for what?

Brock:               Everything.

Ben:                   Everything, uhm, by the way, I did just find out my wife is I think 1/16th Native American?  So, no!  1/8th Native American, kids are 1/16th Native American.  Found out her dad’s like co – core Native American.

Brock:               How did she know that?

Ben:                   I don’t know but she could have gotten so many more like college scholarships so… yeah.  Oh well, total segue but anyways, Ben Greenfield fitness, we got to end this thing, bengreenfieldfitness.com/300, check it out and have a wonderful week!

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

[1:12:13.0]      END




















The Extreme Sport You’ve Probably Never Heard Of, And How You Can Use It’s Renegade Techniques To Become Superhuman.

how to freedive

While on assignment in Greece, journalist James Nestor witnessed something that confounded him: a man diving 300 feet below the ocean’s surface on a single breath of air and returning four minutes later, totally unharmed…

…and smiling.

This man was a “freediver”, and his superhuman abilities inspired James to seek out the secrets of the little-known discipline of free diving, and to write the new book, Deep: Freediving, Renegade Science, and What the Ocean Tells Us about Ourselves.

In the book, he embeds with a gang of extreme athletes and renegade researchers who are transforming not only our knowledge of the planet and its creatures, but also our understanding of the human body and mind. He finds whales that communicate with other whales hundreds of miles away through sonar, sharks that swim in straight lines through pitch-black waters using built-in, natural electromagnetic sensors, and seals who dive to depths below 2,400 feet for up to eighty minutes.

From each of these strange phenomena are, James shows how humans themselves could be capable of these remarkable feats such as extreme breath-holding, echolocation, and alternate forms of communication.

James has written for Outside Magazine, Dwell Magazine, National Public Radio, The New York Times, Men’s Journal, The San Francisco Chronicle Magazine, and more, and in today’s interview with James, you’ll learn:

-Why Olympic athletes are learning to hold their breath for more than 5 minutes

-How you can use something called “the Master Switch of Life” to enhance your heart and lung function…

-What you can train your body to do to survive as you dive to greater depths…

-A new form of air pressure equalization that allows you to go to incredible depths, and how to learn it…

-How to use breath-hold walks and other forms of dry land breath training to increase your oxygen capacity…

-Why WiFi routers and cell phones may actually be destroying your innate ability to sense your physical location on the planet…

-How you can learn to navigate without seeing and instead by using a built-in ability called echolocation…

-How you can learn to freedive…

Resources From This Episode

-The book Deep: Freediving, Renegade Science, and What the Ocean Tells Us about Ourselves.

-Ted Hardy from Immersion Freediving who can teach you the Frenzel Technique on Skype.

-This Frenzel technique .pdf if you want to teach yourself.

-Performance Freediving International to learn how to freedive.

If you have questions, comments or feedback about how to start freediving, the book Deep, or anything else James and I discuss in the podcast, then leave them below.

#299: Does A Vegetarian Diet Reduce Sperm Count, Cell Phones And Brain Cancer, What Is A Good “HRV” Number & More!

Sad Sperm

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

Nov 19, 2014 Podcast: The Best Place to Live For An Active Lifestyle, How To Naturally Increase HCL Production, What Is A Good HRV Number, Meat Broth vs. Bone Broth, and Breath Ketones vs. Blood Ketones.

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 Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Facebook.com/BGFitness and Google+.


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

Need to fix your gut, build new muscle, or enhance the effectiveness of your probiotic? The brand new Greenfield Fitness Systems NatureColostrum has arrived. Click here to check it out now.

December 15-19, 2014: Ben interviews 23 of the world’s leading experts in performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, brain, sleep and hormone optimization, and you get a free all-access pass. Check it out now at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/RevYourself.

Go ask your burning Obstacle Racing questions at ObstacleDominator.com for the brand new Obstacle Dominator podcast.

December 4-5 Ben will be speaking at Mark Divine’s Unbeatable Mind Retreat in Encinitas California. This is a life-changing experience for anyone looking to learn about SEAL principles, health and peak performance – with LIVE, hands-on training from Mark Divine and a world-renowned team of experts.

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.

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.

The Best Place to Live For An Active Lifestyle

Geoff asks: Given your lifestyle of travel and sport, why do you live where you do? Where do you think would be the best place in the world to live for swimming, biking, running, wellness and living an active lifestyle in general?

How To Naturally Increase HCL Production

Cathy asks: She has tried to supplement with Betaine HCL (for all the good reasons you have mentioned in the past) but it gives her major insomnia, a little anxiety and some joint pain. She can’t find any information on why this would be happening. She saw that it could be related to suppression of potassium and magnesium. Could it be a mineral imbalance?

What Is A Good HRV Number?

Annie asks: She wants to start using HRV to avoid over training. She understands that her LF and HF should be balanced with high power and that her HRV and rRMSD should be high… but she is not sure what numbers she should be looking for. What number is “ideal” and what number is “out of whack”? She is 25, if that makes a difference. Do you have any quantitative numbers that she can go by?

Meat Broth vs. Bone Broth

Robin asks: She has heard all about how good bone broth is for us and would like to start using it but she has heard that it is also very high in glutamate. She already has high glutamic acid in her blood so she is reluctant to try it in case it raises her glutamate even more. She is confused. Should she be drinking it?

Breath Ketones vs. Blood Ketones

Amely asks: She recently purchased a Ketonix breath ketone meter and is wondering how the measurements from the breath compare or relate to the measurements from a blood ketone meter? She doesn’t want to buy a blood ketone meter but she does want to know if she is achieving a state of ketosis or not. She is worried the breath meter is not sensitive enough. Can you give her a sense of what the comparison between the blood and breath meters are?

In my response I recommend:
-Jimmy Moore’s Ketone Clarity interview


– And don’t forget to go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/love!

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!

Podcast music from 80s Fitness (Reso Remix) by KOAN Sound. Buy this track now!


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Episode #299 – Full Transcript

Podcast Episode#299 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/11/299-does-a-vegetarian-diet-reduce-sperm-count-cell-phones-and-brain-cancer-what-is-a-good-hrv-number/


Introduction:  In this episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast:  Does A Vegetarian Diet Reduce Sperm Count, Cell Phones and Brain Cancer, The Best Place To Live For An Active Lifestyle, How To Naturally Increase HCL Production, What Is A Good Heart Rate Variability Number, Meat Broth vs. Bone Broth, 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 wanna shed a few pounds, get ready for non-run-of-the-mill cutting edge content from bengreenfieldfitness.com.

Brock:               Shalom, man!

Ben:                   Hey!  Yo!  Shalom!

Brock:               Did I say that right?  Shalom, Shalom…

Ben:                   I think that’s one of those Hebrew words that is easy to say correctly ‘cause you don’t have to sound like you’re spitting up a hairball when you say it.  Unlike say uh, L’chaim.  Which I said plenty of time over in the past week in Tel Aviv because I pretty much drank copious amounts of wine and cocktails every night over there.  And it was amazing, by the way, amazing.  I’m sure that our listeners perhaps listened to the last two podcasts that I released from Israel.  If you didn’t, go back and listen to ‘em because I took away a lot of really interesting, a lot of good tips as far as the whole health, wellness, and nutrition scene over there.  So, check those out, go back and listen to those two episodes.  It’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/Israel and bengreenfieldfitness.com/whycancer and they kinda go over some over the stuff that I found over in Israel that I think you’ll find helpful but speaking of bringing things back from Israel, Brock…

Brock:               Did you bring me a present?

Ben:                   We have a little Ben Greenfield…

Brock:               Did you bring me a camel?

Ben:                   We have a little Ben Greenfield Fitness meet up over there.  I did not even see any camels over there by the way.  Lots of goats.

Brock:               They do have real cities and not everybody rides a camel on it.  All the stuff we see in Disney films.

Ben:                   Yes, it’s not the Middle East from Aladdin, Brock.

Brock:               No.  I know.

Ben:                   Anyways though, olive oil.  There’s lots of olive oil there as you can imagine.

Brock:               Oh, I bet it’s delicious too.

Ben:                   It’s delish!  And, I actually released a video of one of the olive oil farms that we went to and the shocking news that you actually really can cook olive oil at high temperatures.  I’ll put a link to that, that video.  Yeah, extra virgin olive oil, you can cook at high temperatures.  Brand new research…

Brock:               But it just smokes like crazy.

Ben:                   No it doesn’t.  Brand new research that just came out of California showing the type of extra virgin olive oils that you can use.  If it’s the really cloudy stuff, with lots of polyphenols and flavonoids, and antioxidants that comes in like those glass, non-transparent bottles that actually has a really high smoke point and it does not get oxidized when you heat it.  So, this is brand new news to me and I actually got – I caught on video the olive oil a researcher going over all this and I just uploaded it to Youtube.  So, I’ll put a link to it in the show notes.  It’s over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/299 but a funny story about that, we had a little Ben Greenfield fitness meet-up in Tel Aviv.  The night before I came home and one of our listeners brought me a bottle of olive oil as a gift.  Like a nice glass bottle of olive oil.

Brock:               Nice.

Ben:                   And as we were rushing through the airport, rushing through JFK, right, we just arrived back in the States where you re-check your bags, you know, travelling internationally gonna grab your bags and re-check them.  Somehow, that bottle of olive oil broke inside the bag.

Brock:               No!  No!

Ben:                   So I’m running through the airport, right, and I got this olive oil bag like dripping behind me as I’m running through the airport.  When we arrived to re-check our bags, and we hear like all this commotion behind us.  And loud sounds of vacuuming machines, and like a Hazmat type of clean-up crew and they’re following this kinda piss colored trail of olive oil over the linoleum and I’m kind of nervously gulping because I can see that the trail of olive oil leads directly to my feet and this entire clean-up crew At JFK thought of course that they’re probably cleaning up some type of urine or human body fluid.


So, they’re basically following all the way to me and in front they get to me, and I was very straight forward with them, and I said – well, I have a bottle of olive oil here in my bag that appears to be broken open.  So I took it out, threw it away.  I actually stuck my hand in it and just like took a big handful of it and ate it right there in the airport ‘cause I want to at least see what it tasted like.  And then, I wipe the olive oil off my face, and lovingly said goodbye to it, and left the hazmat crew to clean-up the highly toxic olive oil from the JFK airport and…

Brock:               And all the people who had wiped out in the puddles of olive oil.

Ben:                   That’s right and I smelled like a giant pizza for the rest of the trail.

Brock:               Uhmm, delicious!

News Flashes:    

Brock:               Now, even though you have been on several different continents in the last few weeks, you have been churning out all kinds of stuff over at twitter.com/BenGreenfield and Facebook and so on.  Wanna highlight some of the cool ones that you’ve been talking about?

Ben:                   Some of the cool stuff.  Yeah.  Actually, of course I did just published last week a podcast on cancer.  Why you get cancer, what you can do about it.  And…

Brock:               Yeah, that was very powerful.  I enjoyed that one.

Ben:                   It was!  And it was more focused on the emotional and stress components of cancer, and how our 24/7 rush lifestyle can potentially suppress disease and cause tumor formation, and the actual research that’s behind that but this particular tweet that I sent out was not focused on emotions and stress.  It was focused on cell phones and a brand new study that showed use of cell phones link with brain cancer.  This was a massive study out of Sweden, and what they found was that talking on cell phones can be related to brain cancer.  They literally studied thousands of people and found that the longer a person uses a cell phone, the more likely that they are to get gliomas which are type of tumor found in the brain and the spinal cords.  And the risk is 3 times higher after a couple decades of using a cell phone.  And of course, we’re now dealing with the first generation that’s been using cell phones for a couple of decades, right?  So, it’s the first time…

Brock:               Happy me.

Ben:                   … that they’re able to come up with this.  So yeah, I mean, yet more evidence that it may be a good idea for you not only to mitigate your use of a cell phone but also when you’re gonna use one, do what do use an air tube headset which means that it’s this cable that plugs in your phone, sound travels in tubes of air up to your head and your cell phone never has to go near your head.  So, I’ll link to this new study in the show notes but…

Brock:               So you’ve got stethoscope for your phone.

Ben:                   Yes, and if you’re listening to this podcast, through like the Apple podcasting app, and it’s all up to your ear, you should probably put that down right away.

Brock:               I’m now starting using my phone like the old Spanish ladies I see in the neighborhood that hold it like out in front of their face and shout into it.

Ben:                   Uhmm, uhmm, that’s what my wife does ‘cause I don’t think she’s figured out how to use the headset yet.  So, she just kinda shouts under the speaker.  So, she can’t really ever have a private conversation.

Brock:               Who needs privacy?

Ben:                   I guess we might as well break the ice here and talk about the vegetarian diet.  Did you hear about this one?

Brock:               Well, I saw the extreme [0:08:19.1] ______ that ensued on the facebook page when you posted this.

Ben:                   Oh my gosh!  The new study that shows that the vegetarian diet does something terrible to men, I guess that men are interested in having children.  And…

Brock:               Yeah.  In my opinion, that’s not an issue.

Ben:                   Well, here’s the deal.  There’s Loma Linda, the University, right?  Loma Linda the University is like a Seventh Day Adventist university and so, it’s of course, a vegan/vegetarian institution and they monitored meat-eaters as well as vegetarians and vegans between 2009 and 2013 in hope of course, since it’s was research done by Loma Linda and under assumptions that vegetarians sperm would be healthy.  But what they found and I quote from the study author is this: “We found that diet does significantly affects sperm quality.  Vegetarian and vegan diets are associated with much lower sperm counts than omnivorous diets.  Although these people are not infertile, it is likely to play a factor in conception particularly for couples who are trying to conceive naturally, the old fashioned way.”  How about the…

Brock:               With the turkey baster?

Ben:                   The old-fashion way of the turkey baster.  So, they found that vegetarians had 30% lower concentrations of sperm, that their sperms are weaker in terms of movement or motility.  And so, for vegetarians, only 30% of their sperm were active compared to 60% of sperm being active in their meat-eating counterparts.  So, there were couple kinda explanations that they thought that may, say, why this should be the case.  One was the possibility of like a shortage of vitamin B12 – vitamin B12 helps to breakdown estrogen which can help to maintain a high sperm count.


This is the same reason that women have like estrogen dominance, a lot of times can benefit from vitamin B12 or vitamin B12 injections.  It turns out that in a vegetarian or vegan who’s may be not including say like, spirulina, chlorella, some type of a B12 supplementation that might be why the sperm count is lower.  They found that pesticides might be a factor, just because more fruits, more vegetables in a vegetarian or vegan could cause increased consumption of pesticides if they’re not being careful about where they’re getting their fruits and vegetables.  And then, soy.  It’s possible that high consumption of soy in a vegan or vegetarian could impact sperm quality.  So, I think that one of the important things to bear in mind here though is that just like anything, if you look at a vegan or vegetarian diet that’s low in B12, that tie in non-organic produced consumption that’s got a lot of pesticides on it, and then also as high in soy, we got that’s a vegan or vegetarian diet done the wrong way.  Alright, so in contrast…

Brock:               Yeah, that’s not a good one.

Ben:                   Yeah, in contrast more supplementation, use of vitamin B12, consumption of organic, non-herbicide, non-pesticide laden fruits and vegetables, uhm, only consumption of like fermented soy, like miso and tempe, and nato, like I still think and I’ve always say this, that you could do a vegan diet right or you could do a vegetarian diet right, and incidentally like the whole time I was in Tel-Aviv, I had meat twice like the entire trip was almost entirely vegan.  You know, falafel, chick peas, and hummus, and seeds and nuts, and fantastic rare foods.  And I felt great but that again, was a vegan diet done the right way.  So, yeah.

Brock:               I think all our listeners, all of our vegetarian and vegan listeners are doing it the right way.  So, they’re probably not having this problem.

Ben:                   Yeah, and in the simple way now…

Brock:               I’m sucking up to our listeners because I don’t wanna answer all bunch of angry emails!

Ben:                   I did my own sperm count, a huge favor this morning, actually.  And that’s why I was about half hour late to our podcast recording this morning.

Brock:               You were choppin’ the wood?

Ben:                   I actually decide to a…

Brock:               Do somethin’ manly?

Ben:                   I decide to get up early, and go hunting this morning and I got about 180 pound buck at about 7:30AM this morning.  So, I was out there field dressing it and it’s actually the – it’s the biggest buck that I’ve gotten yet.  So it took me quite a while to field dress and to – then I got it quite work out in getting a buck to my truck and then getting it into my truck and so anyways…  my sperm…

Brock:               That’s the size of me.

Ben:                   It was a big animal, I mean, it wasn’t like an elk or anything like that but it was a big animal, and it was…

Brock:               How long do you think it will take you field dress me?

Ben:                   To field dress you?  I don’t wanna field dress you, Brock.

Brock:               Okay, fair enough.

Ben:                   I don’t wanna field dress you for a little while, I still honestly stink a little bit.  It’s like – I don’t know, if you field dress an animal there’s like this smell that’s kinda like stays on you.  It permeates you, and yeah, anyways.  I don’t wanna…

Brock:               Anyways…

Ben:                   I don’t wanna gross people out.  So, I’ll stop there.

Brock:               Sorry vegetarians and vegans… not only your sperm low but now you’re sick to your stomach.

Ben:                   But my sperm right now are quite happy so… and of course, kept the horns for my kids.  They called ‘em horns so, I kept the horns for my kids.  And the last thing that I wanted to mention, a final tweet that I sent out was breathing.  And there’s a really interesting article over at the Sweat Science Blog on Runner’s World, and again, we’ll link to all of these articles over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/… uhmm…

Brock:               299!

Ben:                   299!  I guess almost episode 300.

Brock:               Yeah, we got to figure out what kind of party we’ll gonna have.

Ben:                   Anyways, this one’s about inspiratory muscle training and the fact that there are studies that show that when you warm up your inspiratory muscles, meaning, you actually use like one of these resisted breathing devices, right?  Like a PowerLung, that they found that it can actually in this case in swimmers, increased their performance by improving their 100 meter free-style swim time.  I thought this was really interesting and it’s actually something that I do now when I am travelling to races like the last few Spartan’s that I’ve done.  Typically I find the race my hotels anything from 15 to 30 minutes away from a race typically.  So when I’m driving in my car to a race, I actually do a PowerLung warm-up or I’ll do a good 20 sets of 3 seconds in, 3 seconds out, just to get the lung muscles warmed up and I mean, why not?  Right?  Why not get your lungs all primed, get your inspiratory and expiratory muscles going even if you can’t warm-up your legs while you’re driving.  I think it’s great.  Even if you don’t have a PowerLung,  you can do some like the warrior breathing that I’ve talked about before… like that  (sharp sniffing sound) like the 50 reps of like a sharp nasal inhale and exhale to hyper-oxygenate you a little bit.


I’m a fan and this study shows that there may actually some benefit to inspiratory muscle exercising to warm you up prior to competition.  So I mean, travel with the PowerLung – I’ve always got one in my bag of course, all of our listeners get a discount on the PowerLung.  I think it’s BGF – I’ll give you – if you buy a PowerLung, for like the power lung website, it’s BGF025.  I think it’s what it still is.  Well, I’ll find it and put it in the show notes but yeah, interesting that you actually can warm-up your breathing muscles using these resisted breathing devices and get benefit from them.

Brock:               And you can learn even more about some breathing stuff if you hang on for Saturday’s podcast.  They’re just super cool.

Ben:                   Yeah, Saturday is pretty epic.

Special Announcements:

Ben:                   Now, this episode of the Ben Greenfield podcast is lovely brought to you by Audible and specifically Audible has a free audio book that they wanna give away to both new and existing Audible customers and it’s based off of – I don’t know if you remember this last year, Brock, but this book came out and it’s called Go To F to Sleep, and it’s a book that’s written for parents whose kids won’t go to sleep and it’s basically about the torture process to trying to get your kids to sleep at night, and it’s just a bedtime that’s really actually pretty funny for parents and due to explicit language, you probably shouldn’t play it for your children…

Brock:               Yeah, totally inappropriate.

Ben:                   I think we might be able to play people a little sample of it here…

Audio:               You are cozy and warm in your bed, my dear.  Please go the f*** to sleep.

Ben:                   Okay, so anyways though, there’s a sequel to it now.  There’s a sequel to Go To F to Sleep, and the sequel is called, You Have To F…ing Eat.  So, this one is kinda gives a voice to this longsuffering father whose child will just not eat, and it’s a pretty hilarious follow-up to Go To F to Sleep.  So, uhmm, well I…

Brock:               Children are idiots aren’t they.

Ben:                   I, no way, I no way condone speaking to your child with profanity but these books are actually kinda funny.  So, you can them for free.  The URL that Audible has given us to give to you to go and get your book for free, is audible.com/cranston and I think that’s because the book is narrated by Bryan Cranston.

Brock:               Oh, that’s awesome!

Ben:                   Yeah.  So, if you go to audible.com/cranston, you can get it for free.  I don’t really know much about Bryan Cranston.  Why is…

Brock:               He’s the Breaking Bad guy.

Ben:                   Okay.

Brock:               He’s Heisenberg.

Ben:                   So, Samuel L. Jackson narrated Go To F to Sleep, and then Bryan Cranston narrated You Have F…ing Eat.

Brock:               That is so cool!

Ben:                   Alright.  So, you guys – our listeners get ‘em for free.  Uhm, audible.com/cranston, that’s audible.com/cranston.  What else for special announcements?  I guess for those who are listening to this podcast, right on when it comes out, a couple of upcoming events.  First of all, I’m speaking at Mark Divine’s Unbeatable Mind Retreat.  I finished my speech for that retreat.  I finished my speech on the airplane back from Tel Aviv and it’s gonna be pretty epic.  I’m basically taking people through office, bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, a whole home like every single biohack you could do to make your environment into a place that enhances your cognitive performance or your physical performance.  I’m just kinda delve into the nitty gritty of all these stuff.  I think they’ve given me like a good hour and 15 minutes to do this, so we’re gonna be able to cover a lot of stuff.  So, if you happen to be near Encinitas or San Diego, California, you wanna get into that thing, it’s at bengreenfieldfitness.com/unbeatable, bengreenfieldfitness.com/unbeatable, and also I’ll be leaving the Unbeatable Mind Retreat and heading over to Malibu to race in the Spartan Race in Malibu on December 6th as well as December 7th. So, if you’re listening in and you happen to be at the Malibu Spartan, I’ll be there as well sporting my Spartan… pantaloons.

Brock:               Sportin’ your Spartan?

Ben:                   My Spartan pantaloons.  And then also, December 15th through the 19th is my massive online conference where I’ve got 23 of the world’s leading experts on performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, hormone optimization, and everything all comin’ on for free and you get a free all access pass over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/revyourself.


That’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/revyourself and I’m working on getting a couple secret super special surprise guests on as well.

Brock:               Oh yeah!  Did you get lots of votes from all the folks who wanted to have their say on who gets to speak?

Ben:                   I did.  It’s looking like it’s going to be a – probably either Kim Jong Il, possibly Barack Obama…. I told people name anybody, anybody.  So apparently, dictators and presidents are who people want to hear me interview.  But in all seriousness, I am getting a couple of secret special guests on there and you’ll actually be pretty surprised that who I managed to get in.  So, check all that out at bengreenfieldfitness.com/revyourself, and, yeah that’s it.

Listener Q&A:

Geoff:                Hey Ben, I have a question for you.  Given your last time like sense of travels, I was wondering why you live, where you do.  And what do you think is the best box to live for swimming, biking, running, wellness, and just an active lifestyle in general.  Thanks!

Brock:               It’s kinda sounds that Geoff isn’t very fond of Spokane area.

Ben:                   I love living in Spokane and it’s just not because I can hunt and podcast all in the same morning.  You know, Spokane in particularly is – it’s a very quiet city, it is jam-packed with mountain biking, fishing, skiing, hunting, show boarding, hiking, all four seasons: spring, summer, winter… and the other one, fall.  It’s pretty much just kinda little bit of everything, and I love it.  It actually just got ranked, I believe it was in Outside Magazine as one of the top waterfronts in the country as well just because the Spokane river kinda passes through it all.  The reason that I live here, honestly is not originally because of all that.  It’s originally because when I graduated from the University Of Idaho, I got a job in Spokane technically close to Coeur d’alene, Idaho which is across the border from Spokane, in surgical sales.  So, I was selling knees, and hips, and standing around in surgical wards helping doctors to install knees and hips.  Like, that was my first job out of college, and wind-up living in Spokane for that, and never living.  I fell in love with the city.  It’s amazing!  Absolutely amazing.  And now, you know, I have my dream home out here in the middle of a forest, and it really is just a place where you can get out in nature, and skip the hustle and bustle of the big city.  There’s enough to do ‘cause it’s got about half a million people to where you still got a cultural scene but there’s zero traffic and there’s tons of… as we like to call it “neture”.

Brock:               Neture?

Ben:                   It’s also got really low pollution.  This was interesting when I was in Tel Aviv, I’m with a start-up over there and this is a start-up that launched a brand new app called the BreezoMeter, and the breezoMeter maps real time air pollution.  And it gathers air pollution weather data from literally thousands of sources and then it’s got this build-in algorithm that shows you the exact air quality and what’s called the air quality heat map around you no matter where you’re at.  So you can anywhere in the city, you can do something like – map out like a running route, or a cycling route, and you can see exactly what the air quality is gonna be like when you’re in that route.  And it literally…

Brock:               Oh that’s awesome!  And circumnavigate the smog.

Ben:                   It will create.  You can tell how far you wanna run for example, and it will create the healthiest run for you based off of air quality if air quality tends to affect you deleteriously like with asthma or you know, your lungs will feel after the run.  It will literally help to show you where to go for the best air quality for like a bike ride or run, or anything like that.  I thought it was pretty cool idea honestly.  It’s called BreezoMeter, I’ll put a link to it in the show notes but I believe it’s free or close to free, and you just put it on your – it’s available for Google and then also, available soon, I think they’re developing the iPhone version but it’s almost out.  I think he said it was gonna be a couple of weeks or something like that when I met with him.  But yeah, super duper cool.  Called the breezoMeter.  The reason that I bring that up is not only the air quality really good in Spokane but there are also some other big cities for active families and Outside Magazine, actually just came out with their 10 Best Big Cities for Active Families.  So, shall we tell people what they are?

Brock:               Drumroll.  I think that deserves a drumroll.

Ben:                   Uhmm, drumroll.  And by the way, I’ll put a link to this article if you really wanna delve in to the nitty gritty details of each of these cities.


So, here they are: Minneapolis, Minnesota – best for lovers of parks, and lakes.  Austin, Texas – best for urban recreation.  And I actually do really like Austin.  I used to do and teach a triathlon camp down there.  And I – Austin and Portland, to the only other cities that I would consider living in aside from Spokane, and their built on this list.  So Portland, is on there and of course Portland because of the awesome cycling scene there.  That’s why I made the list but there’s more a lot to do in Portland.

Brock:               So check a ride in uni-cycle then?  I had to do something like that.

Ben:                   Yeah, Salt Lake City, Utah’s on there.  Salt Lake City, Utah – best for mountain sports, skiing, snowboarding, stuff like that.  Boston, Massachusetts – this one surprised me.  Well, Boston is best for runner and running fanatics.  Which I think is really interesting.  I actually visited the author of the book, The Evolution of the Human Body, Dr. Daniel Lieberman, he believes that running barefoot is the best thing since slice bread or it is slice cheese…. I don’t remember.  That’s the analogy.

Brock:               Sliced Pemican?

Ben:                   Sliced, yeah… whatever.

Brock:               Sliced liver.

Ben:                   Anyways, I was in Boston a couple of years ago and he and I did an 8 mile run through Boston barefoot, amazing.

Brock:               Cool!

Ben:                   But Boston is a good place for running fanatics.  Colorado Springs, Colorado – best for endurance sports such as triathlon.

Brock:               Surprise!

Ben:                   Madison, Wisconsin,  Madison, Wisconsin is best for cycling especially road cycling.  Of course they have the world famous Ironman Wisconsin there.  Albuquerque, New Mexico – made the list.  Albuquerque, New Mexico which they say is best for year round adventure.  Things like rock climbing, trail running, mountain biking, even skiing.  So, Albuquerque, New Mexico, and meth of course.  Washington DC, and it said that Washington DC is best for weekend warriors.  Whatever that hell means.  But it’s got a hiking trails, a road biking route, white water for kayakers, so, Washington DC.  That one kinda surprise me that Washington DC made the list.  Boise…

Brock:               It’s kinda gross and hot, and sticky there.    I got to run there once, I almost barfed.

Ben:                   I don’t know how much I like to recreate there.  Boise, Idaho – which I agree that made the list.  I’ve actually got a –  I’ve got a 5 day elk hunting trip down there in Boise next year.

Brock:               I thought this but list was big cities.  Isn’t Boise like 300 people?

Ben:                   Six hundred fifty thousand.  So yeah, and Boise is pretty cool.  Go watch Napoleon Dynamite if you wanna know what Boise is like ‘cause that’s very much what it’s like.

Brock:               That’s an accurate definition.

Ben:                   It’s actually is.  Lots of people wearing wolf t-shirts.  So, those are some other big cities.  You know, I told you why I live in Spokane but if you’re looking for another good city to live in, that’s another one to look into would be this article, The 10 Best Big Cities For Active Families from Outside Magazine.  So, check it out.

Cathy:               Hello Ben and Brock!  This is Cathy from Portland, Oregon.  As always, thank you guys for an awesome show.  I love the podcast, I never missed it.  So, today I have a question about hydrochloric acid, butane HCL specifically, and I hear you mention it a lot and I know that it’s a great supplement to take for many reasons. For gut health, to sterilize your food so that you aren’t prone to parasites, bacteria, etc.  My question is – I have tried the supplement with butane HCL before, and I noticed that it gives me major insomnia, a little bit of anxiety, and I also got a little bit of joint pain with it.  So, I’m having a hard time finding anything about why this may happen.  I did see that it could be related to suppressing like your potassium and magnesium.  So, I don’t know, if that has anything to do with it, could make sense to me if I supplement with magnesium for example, I get heart palpitation and so maybe it’s all point to a mineral imbalance. Not sure.  Anyway, I would love your thoughts on butane HCL and again, thank you guys for all of your awesome work.  It is truly appreciated.  Alright, bye.

Brock:               So, I’ve never taken HCL myself but I do use bitters a lot and I  know that it kinda goes hand in hand.

Ben:                   Yup.  Bitters are digestives.  You can buy bitters in pill or liquid form and bitters help to – they help your body to produce its own HCL.  So bitters aren’t acidic, they won’t contain hydrochloric acid themselves but kind of like a like starting off your day or preceding a meal with lemon wedges or lemon in water.  Bitters work the same way and that’s one way that you can jumpstart your own HCL production if you struggle with the use of an HCL supplements.


So yeah, bitters are really good.  I personally use a digestive enzyme that has HCL in it. I use the Thorne digestive enzyme and I take two of those.  And actually the best timing for digestive enzyme is about 20-30 minutes before a meal or 20-30 minutes after a meal.

Brock:               Uhm, interesting.  Why is that?  Why is it just before or just after?

Ben:                   Because that’s the amount of time that it takes for the enzyme to actually be waiting and ready in your gut to enzymatically act upon whatever you wanna act upon.  So, 20-30 minutes before, 20-30 minutes after.  If you take it right with the exact same time as a meal, it’s actually not quite as effective.  So, 20-30 minutes before or after but the reasoning is kinda interesting.  Yeah, so here’s the deal with HCL and some of the deleterious effects of that, the copy has experienced.  It actually is true that when you’re taking something acidic, you can pull alkalinic ions like magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium, from the blood to buffer the extra acidity that would be an HCL containing supplement.  So that could be the issue that’s happening here.  Of course, that would one would be easily fixed by either a) not taking HCL and using some of the other natural alternatives that I’ll talk about in addition to bitters here in a second or just using mineral supplementation like using things like sea salt, you can get trace liquid minerals that you can add to water, to mineralized water.  You can take like a multivitamin has minerals like the Thorne multivitamin that I’ve talked about before.  That’s actually technically called a multivitamin mineral complex ‘cause it’s got minerals in it.  But basically adding extra minerals into your diet, if you’re on a high amount of HCL, can be helpful if that HCL is pulling alkalinic minerals from your body to help balance out that acidity.  So, that could be one of the reasons.  The other interesting reason that HCL can sometimes cause side effects, they’re unpleasant can be because of what’s called die-off.  When yeast cells are rapidly killed, like if you have a fungal infection or candida or something like.  Candida in your gut which can actually be killed by hydrochloric acid, that actually releases a dozens and dozens of different types of toxins when it dies off.  And that can include toxins – I know toxins is kind of a woowoo word, but some of the things I’m referring to for example would be ethanol, and acetaldehyde.  So if you look at acetaldehyde, we’ve talked about that one on the podcast before.  It’s something that like Asians get big amounts several of it if they try to drink and take some one of these Asian drinking pills that are – that people sell now.  It can actually create a bunch of acetaldehyde and create even more issues that go way above and beyond like the “Asian flush” that folks get when they drink and they aren’t producing alcohol dehydrogenase.  But acetaldehyde can be produced when yeast dies off as well and that can impair your brain function, it can kill brain cells, it can affect your endocrine system, your hormonal balance, your immune system, your respiratory system.  A high levels of acetaldehyde can damage the membrane of your red blood cells, reduce their ability to carry oxygen around the body.  Now, you know why drinking a lot might not be a good idea as well when drinking a lot of alcohol.  So, acetaldehyde generally will get like brain fog, and fatigue, and sometimes you’ll even be more allergic than you would normally be to foods.  And eventually that die off goes away but that’s why a lot of people feel that it’s really horrible once they start on to anti-fungals, reduce carbohydrates, try and kill off yeast, candida, fungus, stuff like that in the digestive tract.  And one of the things that can happen is when you take HCL and digestive enzymes and especially a lot of HCL, you can kill off some of those fungus.  You can get some of these candida die-off type of symptoms.  In that case, some of the best things you can do if you’re experiencing die-off symptoms is one, you should drink a bunch of water to flush those toxins out, and that can help a lot.  It is just increase your water intake.

Brock:               That’s in total too easy.

Ben:                   Well, there are other things you should do too.  You shouldn’t be exercising much if you’ve got die-off going off just because stress can weaken your adrenals and it can be too much stress to be detoxing and be exercising a lot at the same time.  Vitamin C helps out quite a bit, it helps to restore adrenal balance and immune system balance like taking anywhere from about 2-4 grams of vitamin C a day can help if you’re experiencing some type of die-off reaction.  And then you can also take supplements that help to neutralize acetaldehyde into acetic acid.


One of the more common ones is milk thistle.  You could literally go out to your yard and find dandelion if you live near the world, and dandelion works very similarly to milk thistle.  You can put dandelion greens in salad for example, or you can just buy like a dandelion extract or milk thistle extract and that can help a lot with converting acetaldehyde into acetic acid, and acetic acid is really easily expelled by your body.  Interestingly, if you’re using milk thistle extract it can help to convert that acetaldehyde into acetic acid and the acetic acid gets converted into digestive enzymes.  So, there’s a pretty cool little circular helpful effect there.  So, I don’t know if this is a candida die-off, I don’t know if it is a stripping of minerals from the body, but either way, those are some of the things that you can consider doing.  If you just wanted to stop taking an HCL supplement all together, you know, you talked about bitters, Brock , there’s one thing that can work pretty well to stimulate your body’s own HCL production, and that’s one really good idea, and actually…

Brock:               They’re also delicious.

Ben:                   They’re delicious!  They’re all right, I guess.  They’re bitter.

Brock:               I love ‘em, I have like 6 or 7 different variety of them and I just take some like my soda stream makes some soda water and just a few drops of bitters.

Ben:                   Yeah, that’s possibly great idea.  That really is a good idea.  Sean  Croxton right now has his digestion sessions going on.  Fantastic online summit like if you have constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, any digestive issues, this – I think it’s like 70-80 bucks to download the audios, the transcripts, the videos, everything.  That’s a really, really good one.  He’s got an interview in there, one of the things he’s gotten there is an interview with a guy named, Dr. Ruschel.  And they go into how to stimulate your body’s own HCL production if you don’t wanna be on an HCL supplement the rest of your life.  One of the things that they talked about is bitters but another thing that they talked about is the fact that if you have H-pylori which is an infection that a lot of people have, that can decrease your ability to produce hydrochloric acid as well.  And I’ve tested myself for H-pylori, it’s very, very simple the test for with a gut test or stool test.  And one of the best ways to get rid of HCL is what something called mastic gum.  So, I got rid of mine by taking 2 capsules of mastic gum a day, for a month.  And that was it, and I re-tested my h-pylori was gone and my digestive symptoms improved massively.  So, that’s another thing that can affect hydrochloric acid is H-pylori.  And then the last one is, what can happen if you are not producing enough HCL is a symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.  And there was this really interesting study and again this is talked about in that digestive sessions summit – we’ll put a link to that in the show notes where you can go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/fixmygut.  That’s bengreenfieldfitness.com/fixmygut to download all these sessions but vitamin B12 injections, they did a really interesting study in Japan where they found that doing vitamin B12 injections, not taking it orally but doing a once a month vitamin B12 injection…

Brock:               A shot in the hip.

Ben:                   …could make the body produce its own hydrochloric acid.  Really interesting link between vitamin B12 deficiencies and inability to produce hydrochloric acid and this is where they just take a little pinch of like abdominal fat typically or sometimes a fat in your butt, it’s a little subcutaneous needle, they injects vitamin B12 and that’s it.  Super – it’s safe, it’s legal, something that a lot of naturopathic medical physicians will do and it’s a – in the Japanese, they are using what’s called cyanocobalamin injection.  You can also get a methylcobalamin injection but these are just vitamin B12 injections and they improved the production of HCL, so yeah, bitters, knock out H-pylori, vitamin B12 injections.  Look into whether or not this might be a candida die-off, if it’s not, and it’s just a stripping of alkalinity.  You can use minerals.  So, those are some of the things I’d recommend, and again I would also – I do like these digestion sessions things, so I would go over to the bengreenfieldfitness.com/fixmygut link and grab those as well.

Annie:               Hi Ben, I want to start using HRV to avoid over training and I’d seen that my LF and HF should be balanced with high power, and also that my HRV and rRMSD should be high but I’m not exactly sure what numbers I’m looking for.  To see what number is ideal and what numbers are so out of whack that I just shouldn’t be training.


I’m female and 25, I act to assume that that also makes a difference.  If you have any like quantitative numbers to go by, that would be great help.  Thank you.

Brock:               Did you check your HRV this morning?

Ben:                   Uhmm, I didn’t do my HRV measurement this morning ‘cause I got up a little – I wanted to hunt, I got up a little late.  You gotta get out there before you know, it’s light to get hidden before the deer come out.  So, I was in a rush.  So I didn’t do HRV…

Brock:               I was gonna do – I was gonna do a compare numbers thing, and look at out if this was higher…

Ben:                   My numbers are generally in between 85 and 95 for HRV numbers and that’s great question you know, what is the right HRV balance.  So, first of all, I’ve got a really, really helpful PDF that I’m gonna put a link to in the show notes because recently in the Superhuman Coach Network which is the global network of personal trainers, and nutritionists that I advised, we had folks from Sweet Beat that come on and do a seminar on some of the really nitty gritty geeked out aspects of HRV and they actually went into not just your low frequency and your high frequency numbers which measure the strength of your fight and flight nervous system, and your rest and digest nervous system, respectively, but also we went into the rRMSD, and I know that, that’s a mouthful but basically that’s the standard deviation in the amount of times spent between heart beats, right, so like a high rRMSD is correlated with a high HRV.  All that means is that, there are tiny beat to be fluctuations in the amount of time that your body spends between heart beats and that’s a good thing.  It shows good interplay between both the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of your nervous system, and a good healthy, robust nervous system.  But they’ve also done some studies where they found the approximate HRV and the low frequencies and the high frequencies that are generally considered to be average for males and females in different age ranges.  And there’s a really helpful powerpoint online that I’ll link to if you wanna take a look at.  I’ll link to it in the show notes.  What it comes down to is for younger males up to about 29 years old, the average HRV is about 72, and for females, it’s about 67.  And then as you get older, a drop, the average for 30-49 years old is 62 for males, and 60 for females, for 50-69 year old males, it’s 52, and for 50-69 year old females, it’s 55.  And then for the 70 to the 99 year old age range, it drops down to about 52 for both males and females.  Now, what you’ll find is that a lot of times in athletes and then very healthy people, especially people who are physically healthy, the HRV is much higher than that.  I find that for the majority of the very successful healthy athletes who I worked with who are not injured or not getting sick.  They tend to consistently stay between 80 and 90, and after our weekly rest day or weekly easy day, we get up into the 90s.  And that’s a combination of rest, it includes low emotional stress, low relationships stress, good nutrient intake, but as far as the actual research on the averages, we’re generally looking at anywhere from like the mid-70s to upper 60s, and when the younger age ranges to the like mid 60s for the higher age ranges.  Now, as far as low frequency and high frequency scores, these are also something that you’ll find in the Sweet Beat app for example which is the app that I use to measure my heart rate variability.  For males in their 20s, you generally gonna find low frequency to be right around the mid 1000 like on 15oo, and for females right around 800.  And then, for the high frequency score or your parasympathetic nervous system score close to a thousand for males, and right around 500 and 600 for females.  And then as you get older that tends to drop, for males for example once getting up into your 40s, low frequency is around 200-300, same for females, and then high frequencies between 100 and 200.  But again in athletes like for myself, I tend to measure between 6,000 and 8,000 for both low frequency and high frequency.  So again, these averages are not necessarily for very healthy, robust population.  These are for the non-bengreenfieldfitness.com listeners.

Brock:               Sucking up again.

Ben:                   So yeah, basically if you’re listening and you have no clue what I’m talking about, you need to go back and listen to some of the other HRV episodes we’ve done ‘cause we’ve spent hours explaining what exactly HRV is.


But I can tell you those are the numbers based off of studies that have been done and then I can tell you from my own experience with the athletes that I’ve worked with, I generally like to see low frequency and high frequency numbers that are about 1500 or higher, and I’d like to see HRVs that are 80 plus and then on really good days, 90 plus and if you’re 25 years old, you should definitely be in that 80 to 90 range, and then in the thousands as far as your low frequency and high frequency goes.  And again in the actual show notes for this episode, I am uploading a PDF that’s gonna be super helpful for you.  So, if you go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/299 I’ve got an HRV measurement PDF, and it’s the same PDF that we kinda went through in that Superhuman Coach Network workshop that I did.  It’s not the audio or anything like that, but at least gives you some of the information that we went through in the actual PDF itself.

Robin:               Hi Ben and Brock, my name is Robin and I have a question about bone broth.  Everyone talks about how healthy and nourishing it is to your body.  However, I’ve also read that it has high levels of glutamate.  I recently did a NutrEval test by Genova and it showed that I already had elevated glutamic acid levels.  So I’m really concerned about taking anything that might increase my glutamate levels even more.  Would love your thoughts about that.  I’m really confused about what to do and whether I should be taking that, I mean, drinking that actually. Thanks! Bye bye.

Brock:               Glutamate… as in monosodium glutamate?

Ben:                   Mono-sodium glutamate…

Brock:               Because that’s just one type of glutamate.

Ben:                   As in Chinese food.  That’s right, I like me some good MSG.  That’s a sign of a good Chinese restaurant is if you walk out with brain fog…

Brock:               Yeah, I listened to a science Friday podcast all about the MSG conundrum and the studies are so all over the place.  There’s no real scientific link between MSG and brain fog, and all the headaches, and all that kind of stuff people report.  It’s crazy.

Ben:                   It can depend, I mean, when you’re looking or the mommy flavoring that’s added to Asian food, sometimes it can depend on how much and sometimes it can depend on you.  So, for example a glutamate clearance is affected by the amount of mercury that you have in your body.  And so, if you have dental fillings or if you have a lot of heavy metals, just because of exposure to heavy metals or you’ve never done a metal detox, that will lower your ability to clear glutamate or to clear MSG.  And when that happens you’re gonna be more susceptible to brain fog but then say, your neighbors sitting across doesn’t have mercury fillings.  So mean, there are little things that can affect this pretty dramatically, you know, in the case like that, you wanna say for example, go visit probably the best doctor in the USA for getting your mercury fillings removed.  There’s a guy named Stewart Natalie who is in Texas.  You can look him up or you can look in your area for what’s called The Holistic Dentists and we’ve done podcast before on holistic dentistry but you can look at getting your mercury fillings removed or you can do a detox like once a year.  I do a heavy metal detox, I use the stuff called Metal Free, and it literally binds metals in what’s in amino acid cage like it’s a spray that you put underneath you tongue.  It chelates metals but it doesn’t allow them to become active and circulate in the bloodstream, it’s they’re chelated.  They’re basically passed out in your stool so you get a nice shiny metal stool.  Not really.

Brock:               Really?  No.

Ben:                   Not really.  That’ll be pretty cool though.

Brock:               That will be cool.  Dunk… in the toilet, dunk…

Ben:                   Anyways though, so that’s one thing that you can look at is, it is mercury and metal.  But there’s also a difference between bone broth and meat broth.  So, meat broth is when you cook the bones and the meat into the stock, and that’s what’s meat broth or meat stock.  It’s got a bunch of gelatin, it’s got a lot of free amino acids in it, and it’s not as high in glutamate as a bone broth which is when you’re actually simmering the bones for a long period of time.  So the difference between like a meat broth and a bone broth, and when you’re using a bone broth, and you’re getting a lot of those glutamates to draw out of the actual bone itself.  Cooking the bone broth can actually produced a little bit more of those free-glutamates and people who are sensitive to those can react to them in the same way that they do with MSG.  So because of this, what can be a good idea is to start with meat broth, and to just use meat broth only and if you’re doing this for health reasons, a lot of times as you’re beginning to get healthier, you know, I talked about candida die-off for example, and one of the things that they’ll use a lot of times in people who have candida infection who’ll need to heal their gut, is bone broth, will be one of the recommendations for that, but in reality to help to ease some of the toxicity that can occur from that candida die-off I was talking about earlier, you can start off with a meat broth, and then gradually progress to a bone broth as you become healthier.


But a lot of people just need to stick to the meat broth rather than bone broth or cook the bone broth at a really low simmer which will help to minimize a lot of the free-glutamate production that occurs when you’re making a bone broth.  But as far as the glutamate thing goes, you may want to consider doing like a metal detox, the other thing you may wanna consider is switching to a meat broth instead of a bone broth.  And I don’t know if you’re buying these broths or making them yourself, but I would consider kinda go in the meat route rather than the bone route for your broth.

Brock:               What about doing something like the gelatins?

Ben:                   Like buying the powdered gelatin or the collagen?  That might be higher in free-glutamates.

Brock:               Okay.

Ben:                   I’m actually not 100% sure but I would imagine based off the way that those are made.  That would be higher in glutamic acid and glutamates than like a meat broth.  I just highly suspect just because of the way that those are made and the amount of collagen that’s in them, and the fact that collagen is hydrolysated or broken down, it’s pretty likely that would be higher in glutamates.  I’m not 100% sure but you know, what I typically recommend to people is that they use this website called The Brothery, right, to just get organic bone broth ship to them if they’re not making it themselves.  But if you’re trying to lower your glutamate intake,  you would want to do just s basic meat broth, and there are plenty of meat broth recipes that are out there but you’re just basically putting meaty bones into a pot and covering them with water and typically add some herbs, you add some salt, and you turn up the heat in the pot, you bring it to a boil and then you let that simmer until the meat is well done and kinda falling off the bone, and then that’s it.  And your meat broth is done.  A bone broth, you’d be going for a lot longer period of time, I mean you’re cooking it for a good day, you’re getting a lot of the marrow and the minerals and stuff out of there but it’s also gonna be higher in glutamate.  So, I would just with like a meat broth and you’re still gonna get plenty of gelatin, plenty of good stuff out of that but less glutamate.

Brock:               And then of course, serve it with a nice Mushu Pork.

Emily:               Hi Ben, this is Emily, and I have question about breath ketone meters.  I recently purchased over at Ben Greenfield fitness systems the breath ketone meter called the Ketonix and I’m curious how the measurements in the Ketonix relate to blood millimolar measurements using the average precision extra.  I’m trying to avoid purchasing a blood ketone meter ‘cause I really don’t wanna to poke myself or buy the expensive sticks in order to test blood ketones but I’d like to see if I’m truly achieving a ketogenic state or not.  It looks like the Ketonix has some sort of a measurement above 5 pm and I don’t know what that really relates to and I’m wondering if you have blood ketones down as low as 1 part per millimolar, if the Ketonix even measure that or how sensitive that is.  Can you please give us a sense of what the comparison is between the blood ketone meters and the breath ketone meters just for those of us trying to stick to ketogenic diet and using the ketone meter as of way of kinda gauging where we’re at in the process.  I’m somebody who has used urine ketone sticks before, and they don’t really well.  So again, thank you so much, bye.

Brock:               I remember when Jimmy Moore was on the podcast, he was talking about using a blood ketone meter and he was doing it like several times a day for three or six months or something ridiculous.  He’s fingers were basically in cushions.

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah.  That’s why I mean like you can get pretty good measurements of ketosis like how many ketone bodies that you’re producing from a blood measurement.  And a blood measurement is pretty accurate but it’s also invasive, it’s inconvenient, it is expensive, and they’ve done studies.  The most recent study was spring of 2014 in which they’ve tested the accuracy of breath ketone measurement using some of these breath monitors that are out there vs. blood ketone measurements.  What they’re found is that, when you’re looking at ketone bodies that you can measure in your breath, in your blood, or your urine that when you’re measuring via the breath, you get a pretty significant correlation between what you’re going to find in a blood test and specifically what’s measured when you look at the breath is acetone.


And when you’re measuring acetone in the breath, what that correlating to is the amount of what’s called beta hydroxybutyrate in your blood, and those two values tend to track together really, really well.  So, a blood ketone measurement measures beta hydroxybutyrate in the blood, it doesn’t measure acetone acetate or acetone which are two other forms of ketones that you’ll gonna find if you measure in the breath.  But those blood ketone measurements are expensive, they sometimes fail so that means they’ll cost you twice, other inconvenient, and of course meaning that you need to bleed.  And the fact is, that acetone measurement in the breath correlate just perfectly to beta hydroxybutyrate measurements in the blood.  And both of those are better than the urine, so all these urine shows you is what’s called acetoacetate or excess concentration of acetoacetate in your urine and the problem is that that’s eventually going to decrease as you get better and better at utilizing those ketone bodies for fuel basically and so, if you’re just urine eventually you’re gonna think you’re not in ketosis when you’re actually are but you got lower levels of acetoacetate in your urine simply because you’re using it more efficiently.  So, I do like like what I own is one of these Ketonix breath monitors.  It’s got a USB cable that comes out of it, you can plug into your computer, it gives you like a different series of lights to show you what level of ketosis that you’re actually in.  They worked really well.  It’s a one-time cost so you just buy the thing.  I honestly forget how much it costs.  So we’ll put an Amazon link in the show notes to be able to buy it but I think it’s somewhere between like $150, somewhere around in there.  But it’s called the Ketonix and you just breathe in to it and it will tell you whether or not you’re in ketosis and it is sensitive, and there are studies that show that it actually is sensitive enough to be very, very accurate in terms of the way that it tracks with blood beta hydroxic butyrate measurements.  And if you wanna really delve into this, listen to the interview that I did with Jimmy Moore, the ketone clarity interview.  I’ll put a link to that in the show notes if you want to take a listen but it’s really good if you really want to learn more about ketosis.

Brock:               Does that Ketonix meter, does it actually give you like the 1 millimolar or whatever does liter measurements?

Ben:                   Yeah.  It has colors that corresponds to each of those different variables so…

Brock:               So it doesn’t actually spit out a number.  It just gives you like a range?

Ben:                   Yeah, yeah, exactly.  It gives you a color.  Yup, actually the range that you’re in.  Exactly.

Brock:               And that’s enough information there, you don’t need the exact number.

Ben:                   No, you don’t need this.  I mean, if you know that for example, your ketones are between like let’s say 3 and 7.  You’re well into ketosis, whereas if you know s switch between 1 and 3, you’re kind of like mid-range ketosis, if it’s below 1, generally you’re not really in ketosis.  If it’s like above 7 then you might be getting close in keto-acidosis which might kinda be dangerous, but yeah, all you need are ranges, you don’t need exact number.

Brock:               Cool.  Alright then.  That is our last question for the day so maybe we should give away some gear.

Ben:                   Let’s give away some gear.  And by the way, the way that this works is, you can get a Ben Greenfield fitness gear over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/gear and when you do that it goes into the coffers to support the show, so you got like a cool tech workout t-shirt, we’ve got a Ben Greenfield beanie, we’ve got a sweet BPA-free water bottle, but you can also leave your review in iTunes, and if we choose your iTunes review, and we read it on the show, then you get a pack sent straight to your front door.  Lovingly packaged by yours truly.  So, it looks like this review comes from Tib012 and it’s called The End of the Rainbow.  What do you think, Brock?  Do you wanna read it?

Brock:               The End of the Rainbow…  Yeah!  It’s so tiny.  My old man eyes are having trouble reading it.  I’ll do my best.

Ben:                   Use your beard.

Brock:               Yes, the power of the beard will get me through.  “I have listened to dozens of health, wellness, nutrition, and performance podcasts during my grueling two hour commute to and from work, and had finally found the pot of gold at the end of that rainbow.  The Ben Greenfield fitness podcast is a wealth of information that someone with even half a brain,” only half… “can digest and use to improve his/her life.  Personally, I’ve downloaded the Ben Greenfield fitness app which I highly recommend to my iPhone.  Pay the whopping 10 bucks for a full years worth of premium content and I’m now in the process of listening to every single episode.”  Did you write this?

Ben:                   No.

Brock:               This reads like a commercial.  This is fantastic!

Ben:                   Yeah, it’s great.

Brock:               “I often find myself replaying episodes because there’s just so much information that Ben selflessly gives away.  It can be hard to keep track of it all.  After listening to these podcasts for over a month, it is clear that Ben quits his heart and soul into each and every episode.

Ben:                   My soul…

Brock:               Every episode…  “Ben’s podcast sidekick, Brock also gets 5 stars from me.  You guys truly brighten my days and keep my road rage at manageable levels.”  That’s good, that’s our goal.  “Thanks Ben and Brock, keep the great content coming.”

Ben:                   I wonder if they’re Irish like a Leprechaun.  Maybe you should read that in an Irish accent.

Brock:               I was wondering where you’re going with that.  You just wanted to do a crazy accent get everybody mad again.

Ben:                   No, that was a great review.  Well, thank you so much and of course, I mean, since they brought it up, we did – and honestly we did not pay for the review or anything like that.

Brock:               No, that’s not even our moms…it’s not.

Ben:                   You can… pay 10 bucks and you gonna get all of our premium content as well as our secret insiders stuff that we’ve got available inside the Ben Greenfield fitness phone app and also our premium content.  So you can check…

Brock:               The coolest thing actually right now being the audio book version of Beyond Training…

Ben:                   That’s right.  I am chapter by chapter releasing my book.  So, you can check all that out over bengreenfieldfitness.com/premium.  You can grab all the show notes for this episode, everything from the olive oil video to the study on cell phones and cancer, to the HRV measurement pdf, to everything that you need to make yourself pretty dang smart cookie along with free book from Audible over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/299

Brock:               What’s it called again?  You Have to F and Eat…

Ben:                   You Have to F and Eat, Go To F to Sleep, and folks having a good F…ing week.

[1:02:49.0]    END























Why You Get Cancer And What You Can Do About It.

doran sheffer

A couple weeks ago, I caught a lot of online flak for publishing a controversial article about how professional basketball player Lebron James’ constant use of a cell phone held up to his head probably contributed heavily to his recent development of mouth cancer.

And then, just yesterday, here on my wellness visit to Israel, I visited the home of another professional basketball player – Doron Sheffer (the photo above is of me and Doron in his backyard garden as I interview him).

Doron was an amazing basketball player.

He was an achiever. A hard-charger. A professional person.

As a guard for the dominant college basketball team UConn, he fed the ball to star teammates like Ray Allen (recently with the NBA’s Miami Heat) and played for legendary coach Jim Calhoun. Sheffer averaged five assists and thirteen points per game, he hit 40 percent of his three-point attempts and he led the Uconn Huskies to a brilliant 89-13 record, along with NCAA tournament appearances in each of his three seasons.

He was the first Israeli ever drafted by the NBA (the Los Angeles Clippers selected him in the second round in 1996), but he instead signed a lucrative contract with the Israeli professional basketball team, Maccabi Tel Aviv – which he then led to four consecutive national championships.

But then Doron got cancer. Testicular cancer. All the tremendous pressure, tension, difficulties, frustrations pent-up emotions and stress from the life of a hard-charging professional athlete eventually built up inside him and culminated in disease.


Stress Causes Cancer

Indeed, scientists have actually discovered that emotional stress similar to what Doron experienced can be a trigger for the growth of tumors. As a matter of fact, any sort of trauma, emotional or physical stress, can act as a literal pathway between cancerous mutations, bringing them together in a potentially fatal combination.

In other words, your risk for developing cancer can be positively or negatively affected by your emotional environment, including everyday work, physical, emotional and relationship stress.

Now here’s the deal: I’m personally a very hard-charging guy focused on personal and professional excellence in everything I do.

And as I noted to Doron in the audio that accompanies this article, I truly believe that unless you are able to relax, to breathe, to de-stress and to simply stop and smell the roses, you’re going to be the kind of person who eventually develops a disease that puts your fast-forward life into slow-motion.

So you have to put the brakes on before your body puts the brakes on and forces you to stop, perhaps with the flu, perhaps with back pain, or perhaps with cancer.

Make sense?


How To Slow Down Before Your Body Forces You To Slow Down (Audio And Video)

The ultimate question is: how can you do this?

How can you slow down before your body forces you to slow down?

How can you somehow dig yourself out of a hole of a constant barrage of e-mails, text messages, phone calls, over-exercising, eating to train and training to eat, going to bed late, 24-7 self-quantified biohacking, trying to “have everything”, getting up early and still somehow managing to squeeze in some semblance of quality in your friend and family relationships?

This is exactly what Doron figured out, and this man’s new approach to life, his answers, and his new aura of peace and calm spoke heavily to me, which is why I’m now sharing his story with you. He defied conventional medicine and naturally healed his body of cancer, and his approach to life is now refreshing, relaxed and incredibly peaceful.

Myself and the team from Vibe Israel visited Doron at his peaceful home and private health resort “Hyuli” in Amirim, in the mountains of Northern Israel. Amirim was founded in 1958 as a retreat for vegetarians, and it now serves as a residence and hotspot for a community of aromatherapists, massage therapists, herb gardens, spas, a health food shop, an organic olive oil shop, art galleries, restaurants and wellness bed and breakfasts.

These mountains are where Doron reinvigorated his body and underwent his own “spiritual cleanse” after winning his battle against testicular cancer.

These mountains are also where Doron talked to us for 30 minutes about his new perspective on life – 30 minutes of some of the most valuable content you’ll ever listen to or watch (if you’re serious about living happy and disease-free).

Just do me a favor: don’t listen to or watch this one while you’re out pounding the pavement, punishing the gym, or doing hardcore intervals on your bicycle.

Instead, go sit in your backyard, or at the park, or in a comfortable chair in your living room and just breathe and soak in the message.


Click here to listen to the audio of our talk with Doron, which was recorded in his backyard garden looking over the beautiful hills of Amirim, and eating organic figs, goji berries and sweet local almonds.

Click here for the video version, or watch below (video may not yet be fully uploaded as there is quite slow internet here in the northern mountains).



So that’s it. 

What do you think after listening to the audio or watching the video?

What can you change in your own hard-charging life so that you can slow down before you’re forced to?

Leave your questions, comments and feedback below.

Click here to check out Doron’s private health resort, which is actually open for visitations and retreats for people who want to find the same kind of peace that Doron found, and engage in therapies like Tai Chi, Yoga, Qigong, farming, water treatment, solar healing and simply…playing.

5 Things You Can Learn From The Burgeoning Health, Wellness And Nutrition Scene In Israel.

Ben Greenfield Israel Dead Sea

Welcome to the official report from Israel, where my wife Jessa and I are touring with Vibe Israel, who have brought international on- and offline opinion leaders in health and nutrition on a weeklong personalized experience of the burgeoning wellness scene Israel, including us, Lee from FitFoodieFinds.com, Emily from ThisRawesomVeganLife.com and Kate from CookieAndKate.com.

If you haven’t yet discovered Israel as a country to add to your “must-visit” bucket list, you need to do it. Just check out Part 1: The Israman Triathlon and Ben Greenfield’s Fifteen Fun Facts About IsraelPart 2: Ben Greenfield Engages In Potent Anti-Aging Mediterranean Cuisine Face-Stuffing, and Part 3: Top 10 Tips For Racing Israman Triathlon for my reports from last year, during which I toured the fitness and exercise scene in Israel.

As you read, you’ll definitely want to click here tune in to the audio podcast episode that accompanies this episode, which has includes an audio version of the article you’re about to read, along with a bonus interview from the folks at Scio, the pocket molecular sensor I write about later in this article.

The audio is brought to you by Onnit, which is where I buy crazy equipment for my home gym like Zombie kettlebells, battle ropes and sandbags, along with tasty functional foods like Pink Himalayan Sea Salt and Organic Raw Walnut Butter. Click here to check out Onnit and save 10%

OK, let’s jump into the top 5 things you can learn from the burgeoning health, wellness and nutrition scene in Israel (and by the way, the photo above is me covered in mud at the Dead Sea).


1. Vegan Food Can Be Damn Tasty

On our very first evening in Tel Aviv, we stumbled upon “Mezze“, a unique vegan restaurant located in the heart of Tel Aviv. From roasted mushroom pate to organic rye and spelt bread to a “sabha” of hot black-eyed peas sautéed with tomatoes, garlic and cilantro on organic tahini (a rich and thick eggplant paste), we dined in style after a long day on the airplane.

But the highlight of the meal – by far – was the Mezze spin on “moussaka”- a traditional Greek dish made with layers of eggplant and potatoes with lentil and vegetable stuffing. This stuff literally melts in your mouth.

So I twisted the arm of chef Gal Barzilai, a vegetarian and wild plan expert since the age of 13, to hook us up with his custom recipe for moussaka. Here it is. Bon appetit, baby (or as they say here, “be’te-avon”).

Mezze Mussaka (as translated from Hebrew to English by Adi Kaplan). Click here to convert from metric to common.


-700g chopped onion
-2 garlic cloves, crushed
-600g orange lentils (soaked/sprouted) – weight after straining and soaking
-1 kg mushrooms torn hand into small pieces
-100g walnuts + 50g cashew nuts soaked for 30 min in boiled water
-1/2 kg sweet potato peeled and thinly sliced
-30g sweet paprika
-1/4t hot paprika
-60g beets
-olive oil

Vegetables (for layering):
-1kg large potatoes, peeled and sliced lengthwise
-1 eggplant peeled “zebra” style, sliced thickly (1.5 cm)
-handful small tomatoes sliced pretty thick (1 cm)

Tahini (put all ingredients in a blender/hand blender; can also mix by hand):
-125g raw tahini
-150ml cold water
-1 garlic clove, crushed
-1T wine vinegar
-40ml lemon juice
-1/2t salt

1. Saute 600g onions in white oil (canola, grape seed) when starts to brown, add mushrooms and continue to sauté until nicely browned. Grind in a grinder (thickly, leaving small clump – if needed, add vegetable stock or water), then put aside to chill.
2. Put lentils, cashew and walnuts with the soaking water, final 100g raw onions, beets, 150ml water and both types of paprika in a food processor.
3. Brush potato and eggplant slices with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and put in the oven on very high heat

Putting it all together:
1. Brush a pan with a lot of olive oil
2. Layer very densely: eggplant slices, the mushroom/lentil mixture, potatoes, mushroom/lentil mixture, very little tahini, eggplant, thin layer of tahini and top it off with a very dense layer of tomatoes. Brush with olive oil

Bake in oven on 190 degrees Celsius for an hour. It is suggested to let the mussaka “rest” for an hour before serving.



 2. Dates Aren’t Just For Eating

The morning after our dinner at Mezze, we headed to the Dead Sea – an area well known for it’s extremely mineral-rich water – so mineral-rich, in fact, that it is nearly impossible to get your head under the water. You just…float. Here’s a video to show you what I mean:

Anyways, while at the Dead Sea, we visited The Synergy Spa at the Ein-Gedi Hotel. The spa is built on a hillside overlooking a the Dead Sea, and the spa facilities not only contain air saturated with oxygen, but also a bromine treated pool (which I’m floating in on the video above) filled with Dead Sea water.

My chosen treatment at Synergy was a “Date Wrap”, done with Ein Gedi date mud cream. Apparently, the same polyphenols and flavonoids that make dates such a dark and flavorful fruit also have anti-aging and nourishing properties for the skin. As I lay wrapped up and smelling like a giant human date, I was treated to a head and neck massage.

Time will tell if I actually look younger, but apparently this is one of the only places in the world where one can get rubbed down with dates. Eat your heart out, Robert Lustig.

Anyways, even though I couldn’t seem to find date mud cream for you anywhere, this spa did get me thinking about how you can saturate the air in your own house with oxygen, even if you can’t smear fruit on your own body. Here’s what I found:

The U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has looked into specific houseplants that can improve indoor air quality by absorbing environmental toxins and increasing oxygen levels.

Ferns, particularly the Japanese royal fern, not only release oxygen into the air but also absorb formaldehyde. The Boston fern adds both oxygen and humidity to indoor air. Gerbera daisy purifies and boosts the oxygen level of the air of your home while you sleep at night, making this a good choice for bedrooms. Other indoor plants considered highly efficient in oxygen production and air purification include heartleaf philodendron, snake plant, spider plant, Chinese evergreen and golden pothos.

So there you have it. NASA studies indicate that 15 to 18 plants in 6- to 8-inch-diameter pots will adequately increase the oxygen in the air in an 1,800-square-foot residential home. This translates to approximately one large potted plant or two smaller potted plants about every 100 square feet.

Now your home can be just like this fancy Dead Sea spa (and here’s a photo of me inside this gorgeous spa).



3. You Can Put Coconut Milk In Your Cocktails

Yes, you simply must drink some alcohol while in Israel.

I of course, have been, every night.

Here’s an idea of the crazy cocktail concoctions I was served just last night at the famous Taizu Asian Fusion restaurant (this is an advantage of being a blogger – they just brought me a sample platter of cocktails).

-Hendrix Masala: Gin Hendrix, Campari, Sake, Red Vermouth, Masala Tea

-Lady Gin: Gin, Chartreuse, Cucumber, Fresh Lime, Ginger

-Red Old Sage: Sage, Stolichnoya, Pomegranate, Ginger

-Green Tai: Stoli, Sake, Litchi, Cream, Green Tea

-Sharp Satori: Pineapple, Stolichnoya ginger, Remy Martin, Wasabi, Lemongrass

And my favorite…

-Punducherry: Strawberry Vodka, Vermouth, Coconut Milk, Lemongrass, Herbal Berries

With a mix of herbs, fresh muddled fruits and a few goodies thrown in like coconut milk and green tea, I actually wasn’t too guilty after indulging in this alcohol-infused sampling. Go ahead and try one of these recipes for yourself this holiday season (just be sure to detox afterwards).

This may come as no surprise to you if you listened to Podcast #267, in which we had the following conversation about the olive oil club I’m a member of and the olive oil martinis I make (read full transcript here):

Ben: …now, I actually I’m part of this club called the Fresh Pressed Olive Oil Club. They send 3 bottles of olive oil to my house every quarter from like a different area in the world like Australia or Chile or this last one is from Italy.

Brock: You really know how to party, don’t you?

Ben: Well, that’s what I’m getting at. You can do olive oil tasting, it’s actually kinda interesting. It’s somewhere a wine and that you start to recognize the flavors and the aromas and whether an olive oil is herbaceous or sweet or smoky, etc. but you can also make drinks out of olive oil and what I’ll do is take a shot of olive oil and put that like in a martini shaker and then I’ll take a really nice vodka and put 1-2 shots of that in there, squeeze a lemon, do a little bit of olive juice, so it’s kind of like a dirty martini with a splash of olive oil and then I’ll just strain that into a martini glass, sprinkle a little bit of sea salt on there, garnish with an olive and it’s olive oil vodka martini and it taste fantastic like the olive oil adds this splash of flavor that you don’t get in a regular martini and the mouth feel, like you’d think it be like oily but it’s actually got this really cool kinda mouth feel, it’s a very enjoyable drink. Anyone who hasn’t tried an olive oil martini before should try one.

So there you have it. Now you can add coconut milk into your cocktails too. L’chaim! (photo below is me with the other bloggers and my wife, washing down our cocktails with a tasty glass of Jordanian merlot)



4. You Can Exercise Anywhere

When I’m traveling, I have standby workouts, and this trip to Israel is no exception.

For example, if I find a gym, I’ll often do my twist on a 5×5 workout – which is basically 5 sets of 5 repetitions of 5 different heavy lifting exercises. But I throw mobility and movement exercises in the 90 second to 2 minute recovery periods between each 5 rep lift, like this:

-5×5 Bench – Walking lunges while reaching for the sky (10 per leg) for recovery

-5×5 Barbell Back Squat – Bird Dog Opposite Arm-Opposite Leg Extensions (10/side) for recovery

-5×5 Power Clean – Ab Hollowing With Back On Ground With Deep Breathing (10 breaths) for recovery

-5×5 Deadlift – “Quiet” Box Jumps With Silent Landing (10 reps) for recovery

-5×5 Push Press – Bicycle Crunches (10/side) for recovery

If I’m limited to a hotel room workout, I’ll often strap on a Training Mask (use 20% discount code GREEN1) and do a body weight workout for 4-6 rounds like this:

-20x burpees

-10x lunge jumps for each leg

-20x MostFit suspension strap rows

-20x mountain climbers per leg

-60 second handstand hold against wall during recovery

And of course, just like Venice Beach and Miami, they have gyms along the beach here in Tel Aviv, so you can throw down a weight workout with the locals while you’re cycling or jogging on the boardwalk along the Mediterranean Sea. Incidentally, whether I’m traveling or I’m at home, I log every workout I do, 365 days a year, for all members of my Inner Circle (if you’re already an Inner Circle member, just visit the forum and click “Life Of Ben”).



5. You Can Measure Anything. Really.

As you listen to the audio version of this article, you’re going to hear a special interview with a start-up located right here in the heart of Tel Aviv: SCiO.

SCiO is the world’s first portable molecular sensor that literally fits in the palm of your hand. It contains a tiny spectrometer and allows you to get instant information about the chemical make-up of just about anything around you, sent directly to your phone.

SCiO is based on near-IR spectroscopy analysis method. The physical basis for this method is that each type of molecule vibrates in its own unique way, and these vibrations interact with light to create its own unique optical signature.

The device includes a light source that illuminates the sample and an optical sensor (the spectrometer) that collects the light reflected from the sample. The spectrometer breaks down the light to its spectrum, which includes all the information required to detect the result of this interaction between the illuminated light and the molecules in the sample.

Normal spectrometers are big (about the size of a laptop) and expensive (tens of thousands of dollars). SCiO is unique as it is based on a tiny spectrometer, designed from the ground up to be mass-produced with low cost optics – with minimal compromise on the analysis capabilities.

So based on this technology, SCiO can actually read the chemical make-up of any materials around you, including food, plants, medication, oil and fuels, plastics and wood. For example, you can:

-Get nutritional facts about different kinds of food: salad dressings, sauces, fruits, cheeses, and much more.

-See how ripe an avocado is, through the peel.

-Find out the quality of your cooking oil.

-Know the well being of your plants.

-Analyze soil or hydroponic solutions.

-Authenticate medications or supplements.

-Upload and tag the spectrum of any material on earth to our database (including your own body).

Every time you use SCiO you actually help to build a database of knowledge about the stuff around us. The bigger the SCiO community gets, the more data SCiO will have about different materials and this goes right back to the community of users.

Check out the SCio Kickstarter project here, and listen to my podcast interview with the inventors here.



Alright, that’s it for now…but more to come later, including information about a brand new startup that can analyze and give you instant nutritional facts on any recipe you find on any food blog or website, anywhere, and another startup that allows you to instantly check how polluted the air is where you’re at, and the “cleanest air” routes for running, hiking, or cycling. Stay tuned.

Shalom – and be sure to check out Onnit if you need killer fitness gear or functional foods that optimize performance, stay tuned for more on what you can learn from the wellness and nutrition scene in Israel, extra entertaining videos from this trip, and tips on taking your own to health and fitness vacation to Israel. In the meantime, leave your question, comments and feedback below!

photos by Or Kaplan



The Little Known Truth About Smart Drugs And Nootropics (Audio & Article)

smart drugs vs. nootropics

The following is a guest post by Dr. Andrew Hill, Lead Neuroscientist at truBrain. Click here for a fascinating audio podcast that accompanies this article. featuring Ben Greenfield and Dr. Hill.

Dr. Hill received his PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from UCLA in 2012, studying how attention operates in the brain. He has been employed as a Lecturer at UCLA over the past few years, teaching multidisciplinary courses on both Healthy Brain Aging and courses in Neuroscience and Psychology. Dr. Hill has published chapters on measuring and modulating human attention, and continues to research self regulation.

Prior to UCLA, Dr. Hill obtained extensive experience working with both psychiatric and developmental populations as well as gaining experience in high technology areas. He received his B.S. in Psychology/Neuroscience from UMass Amherst, and is a key adviser in the formulation of the truBrain’s cognitive blend (get 20% off on your purchase with the code BEN20).


The Limitless Pill

In the 2011 movie Limitless, Bradley Cooper’s character gets his hands on a smart drug (NZT-48) that enables him to be cognitively super human.  

The only known side effect is that his eyes change color while he is on the drug, but that changes over the course of the movie as side effects, including withdrawal symptoms, begin to get worse and worse.  It’s a sci-fi thriller with a not-so-feel-good message about addiction and performance enhancing substances.  And goons chasing you.

Makes smart drugs sound dangerous, right?

Like any good sci-fi , this movie questions our assumption on the limits of science.  And some of what it is suggesting is not science fiction today. Smart drugs and nootropics are a current reality, being used more and more not to treat or remediate any active condition or complaint but towards boosting already typical or superior performance, in colleges, board rooms, military theatres, and by forward thinking gerontologists.

With the wide variety of compounds available today that have some research support for cognitive effects, it is important for you to understand the risks and benefits associated with usage, or at least how to choose smarter, when choosing things that affect your brain.

For example, one of the most popular misconceptions about smart drugs is that they are the same as nootropics.  This may be due to similar benefits that people use them for, but ultimately they do not share the same range of effects, mechanisms of action, safety and side effects.

So – what are smart drugs?  What are nootropics?  How do we know if something is safe or effective?  What are these drugs actually doing to my brain?  Why am I asking so many questions without answering them?  Keep reading to get this and more information you need to understand these questions, and start formulating your own answers – and your own strategies for selecting nootropics. 


Smart Drugs vs. Nootropics

A smart drug is generally a prescribed medication or off-label drug used primarily to treat some kind of mental or cognitive disorder.

The most common are drugs such as Adderall (dextroamphetamine) or Ritalin (methylphenidate) in the stimulant class used to treat symptoms related to ADHD – although legal and illegal off-label use is rampant.  And while they may promote focus and energy in some people, others have dramatic side effect, to body and brain.  Smart drugs in the stimulant class also tend to be reinforcing, producing spikes in dopamine and norepinephrine.

This leads to tolerance and habit formation, including adverse effects on appetite, mood stability, cardiac function, stress levels and possibly many other unwanted effects – especially on younger brains such as teens and young adults.  Irritability and mood swings, anxiety, sleep issues, and other forms of emotional or cognitive regulation problems can crop up over time with stimulant use, as well.

A popular atypical stimulant “smart drug” includes the narcolepsy agents Modafinil / Adrafinil, although their effects on cognition beyond wakefulness are unproven, and side effects – while rare – can be life threatening.  If attention problems are already present the side effect risk appears to be significant increased, as well. (Kumar, (2008), Approved and Investigational Uses, Drugs. 68(13):1803-39.).

In contrast to a smart drug, a nootropic is generally a non-prescribed compound, including vitamins, herb, other supplements, natural or synthetic compound that may increase or protect cognition in some way.  The preponderance of research in the past 40 years shows some effects on focus, attention, effects on aging, and possibly cellular metabolism.

To paraphrase the definition of “nootropic” as initially coined in this article by the researcher Girugea in 1972, it is something that improves cognition without appreciable side effects, or provides from protection to the brain.

In a modern context we think of nootropics as something used not to treat any mental condition or pathology directly, but instead to provide support to peak function, protect against long term risk, and provide daily boost.  Across the field, true nootropic ingredients and full blends can now be found largely sourced from natural ingredients.  Nootropic blends are designed to leverage synergy effects suggested in the research and subjective experiences.   The goals with nootropics should always be to allow for greater and more consistent cognitive effort and flow, without the side effects of a stimulant or other harsh substance.


How Do I Know If A Smart Drug Is Safe?

As a rule of thumb, it is the nature of science to be wrong at times.  

We’ve come a long way since we accepted that the theory behind the Earth being the center of the universe was wrong.  We understand that new research may overturn old knowledge.  So how can we truly know the risks and benefits of long term use of nootropics or smart drugs?

A red flag in understanding the harm of a substance is the body’s ability to handle an overabundance of this substance.  Small amounts of toxic substances may be beneficial in the short term, but the magic happens when we look at what is happening in the body when we get too much.  Something as simple as a cup of coffee may seem harmless, but caffeine in high amounts can cause dizziness, anxiety, and even cardiac arrest or death.  Caffeine mimics the action of the neuromodulator adenosine in the body.  This leads to higher adrenaline and cortisol levels.

Even in typical doses caffeine can deeply affect our sleep and cause heart arrhythmias for some people.   Alcohol has even worse short and long term toxicity symptoms at non-moderate doses, and some people struggle to keep their dosing moderate.  In better doses – perhaps a couple cups of coffee a day (without sugar) and a drink or so per day on average, these substance are actively health promoting, and reduce risk for many brain and cardiac diseases.  When you are picking substances and compounds, dosing should be cautious at first.

From this, a couple rules come out –

1) don’t take any compounds, substance, or blends of substances that don’t list all their ingredients out in plain amounts.  

Proprietary blends with lump-sum amount hiding buzzword-compliant list of magical ingredients known as “fairy dusting” in the supplement industry.

Don’t be fooled.

Read the ingredients.

Figure out why and what is in there, and if you want it.

2) don’t chase suspicious research chemicals without much history of use or safety profile.  

Experiment on yourself if you like, but you only have one brain – make rational and cautious choices.  There are nootropic, smart drug, and cognitive enhancers that have been around for decades – something released last week as a “Research Chemical” with a bunch of numbers and letters for a name and no human studies isn’t worth the risk to you.  Not for years.


What About Adderall & Modafinil Safety?

Smart drugs such as Adderall can cause dangerous lows, psychosis with extreme use, rebound fatigue, and depression, even at lower use levels.  As an amphetamine, Adderall can act as a reuptake inhibitor, meaning that it can compete with other neurotransmitters for reuptake.

Specifically it is thought to block the uptake of dopamine and norepinephrine, which are associated with reward behaviors and our nervous system functions, respectively.  This causes a flood of these neurotransmitters onto multiple receptors, causing neurotransmitter depletion and overexcited receiving neurons.  This large “signal” is the reason for the focus, but also responsible for some of the side effects that go along with this class of prescription drugs.  Existing research is also a bit weak on any improvement that Adderall or other stimulants may have on short term memory or cognitive function, and some actually may impair function.

Modafinil, also known as Provigil, is an example of a smart drug that has been used like a nootropic.  Modafinil is prescribed to treat sleep disorders, but when combined with a normal functioning brain, can potentially cause increases in cognition and awareness.

Just like Adderall, the use of these drugs outside the medical field does not make them a nootropic.  Modafinil is also a reuptake inhibitor for dopamine, causing the same type of neurotrasmitter flood as Adderall.  However, Modafinil may also affect the histaminergic pathway, which deals with wakefulness and the delicate immune response of the body.  Histaminergic neurons in the brain are more active during wakefulness and slow their firing pattern as we rest or sleep.

Modafinil’s “beneficial” side effects may come from this heightened histaminergic neuronal activation, but too much activation can cause apoptosis, or cell death.  In addition, this has been shown to cause adverse skin reactions that required hospitalization since the histamine pathway also deals with our immune system.  Modafinil may increase your intelligence, but can be extremely dangerous to the health of your brain and body.


Enter Nootropics

Nootropics, like truBrain’s cognitive blend, and a few other products on the market, have dose-toxicity levels much lower than salt, caffeine, and especially Adderall.  

There doesn’t seem to be any neurotransmitter depletion, tolerance or habit forming potential, adverse body side effects, or impaired brain function, from most true nootropics, by Girugea’s definition.  The mechanisms for nootropics lie within the structural connectivity of the brain, the optimization of blood flow and oxygenation, and the fortification of brain regions over long term consistency.  Nootropics act more as a super supplement to protecting the brain.  Girugea’s own first synthesized nootropic (in 1964) is still in use today and has been shown to have effects on mitochondrial metabolism, cell membrane fluidity, and functional connectivity in the brain.

Piracetam is this poster child for nootropics, and one of the main ingredients in truBrain nootropic blends. It is one of the only compounds used in that formulation that can not be found in nature, however it was originally derived from – and has structural similarities to – the neurotransmitter GABA.

Since Girugea bought piracetam to light in 1964, there has been lots of research to support the benefits of piracetam.  It has been shown to positively affect our cell membranes and to have neuroprotective and pro-metabolism effects on cells.  The fluidity in our membranes changes with stress and old age, as well as moment to moment as one method of regulating receptor activity. By keeping our membranes healthy we can promote the cells ability to communicate.

For example, truBrain combines other membrane oriented supplements – including choline. The cell membrane – especially in the brain – relays ongoing control signals and messages from other cells to the inner processes of the cell.  Neurons’ membranes in the axon (wiring) and soma (cell body) help generate and propagate electrical signals, sum distant signals, and even have computational and complex learning functions related to changes in membrane function.  Healthier and more active cell membranes bring us increased activity and cell communication, and hopefully better cognition.

Piracetam along with other truBrain ingredients such as magnesium, choline, and DHA, increases in brain plasticity and are designed to improve cognition and efficiency under processing load – or peak performance, versus remediation.  Nootropics may support increased cognitive potential as well as long term protection.  The truBrain team added L-Theanine and L-Tyrosine to support neurotransmitters of GABA and Dopamine, respectively.

You can use a similar or different strategy when building your own nootropic regimen, but use a strategy.  Know why you are putting an ingredient in, know how it might interact with the others, and be sure that dosing is safe.

When you are planning your nootropic or nutraceutical regimen, think in terms of nutrition support to cell metabolism and function, amino acids, natural or near-natural compounds, and avoid bad fats and harsh chemicals that give a momentary boost at the cost of later crashing or having other more serious side effects, such as excess sugars and caffeine.

And don’t forget what else you put in your mouth – additional DHA and other omega-3 fatty acids (in grass fed meats, deep sea fish) are excellent for brain health. Craft your diet like you craft your brain supplement regimen – or have both catered / curated for you in a high end product.  If you do create your own blend, think precise selection, not shotgun approach, and add slowly to your regimen.


The Problem With Instant Gratification

As a culture, we often hear false marketing claims or create mindsets about what is possible with our health.  

We see ads that advertise a pill that gets rid of “stomach fat fast”.  Truthfully, fat is lost uniformly in the body and the fastest and healthiest way to lose weight it about 1-2 pounds uniformly a week.  So we eat poorly and don’t exercise for 2 years and then criticize our healthy workout plans and diet 1 month in when we don’t get the results we want.

The healthiest and most effective things in life are often the ones that we do routinely.  Consistency is key.  This is true if you are talking about athletic performance, academic or intellectual training, or nutrition and supplement support.  While not “necessary” like supplements or medicines, nootropic use follows this principle as well.  There is another rule, emerging.

If something is strongly “felt” dose to dose – if it gets you high, or wired, or sedated…it’s a smart drug, recreational drug, or something that may enhancing some aspect of performance (perhaps at the expense of another), but is definitely not a nootropic.  And finally, nootropics should be sustainable.

With some nootropics there is an initial loading phase followed by a maintenance phase, and while subtle, results can be felt fairly quickly on the timescale of a few days.  The contrasting quick highs / crashes of coffee, alcohol, smart drugs, and even quickly digesting carbs are definitely experienced more immediately, but have consequences that make them unsustainable for many people.



So in summary – here are a few initial rules to help select your own nootropic or cognitive enhancing blend:

  • Know your ingredients, and their amounts.
  • Don’t spend your money on obfuscate fairy dusting or expensive blends that are full of caffeine or random research chemicals.
  • It’s not a nootropic if it has side effects.
  • Your nootropic solutions should focus on mild nutritive and metabolic support, for long term gains and protection.  Break the cycle peak and crash that you get with too many stimulants, and avoid the more serious side effects that you risk with smart drugs.
  • Nootropics don’t get you high, altered, or wired.

And don’t forget the other accessible and evidence-based brain and cognition improving methodologies we have at our disposal today: meditation, yoga, and other contemplative (attention training) practices, biofeedback and neurofeedback, diets high in good fats, and other modifiable behaviors you can implement to take control of your brain health and performance.

So take care of your brain – the tools are out there, to support health and shift performance.

Leave your questions, comments and feedback below. Also, if you want to try the nootropic that Dr. Hill helped design, grab truBrain and get 20% off on your purchase with the code BEN20.

Part 2: 67 Steps to Getting Anything You Want Out of Life Health, Wealth, Love, & Happiness with Tai Lopez


Welcome to Part 2 of this special podcast series, in which you get to sit in and listen to Tai Lopez coach Ben Greenfield (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“.

You can listen to Part 1 here.

In this episode, Ben and Tai 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:

Finding your strengths/personality tests:

1. If you’re an Entrepreneur or are thinking of becoming one, this book and psychology test is best fitted.

2. If you’re a leader or an active member in a team, this book and psychology test is best fitted.

3. If you work a regular job or you want to know how to apply your personal strengths in your everyday life, this is the book and test for you.


-The online Meyers-Briggs personality analysis

-Joel Salatin’s books and resources

-Book: The Snowball: Warren Buffet and The Business Of Life

-Book: A Few Lessons for Investors and Managers From Warren Buffett

-Book: The Five Love Languages

-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? Leave your thoughts below.

How A Magical Soap Company Is Fighting Toxic GMO Crop Production.

Dr. Bronner Soap

As you may know from reading my article on “How To Detox Your Home“, if I can’t eat something without it killing me, I don’t smear it on my body either. From liquid soaps, to my bar soap, to lip balms to lotions, I’ve been using products from Dr. Bronner’s Magical Soaps (yes, that’s really their name) as one of my main personal care products sources to follow this simple rule.

Unlike most commercial soapmakers, who distill the glycerin out of their soaps to sell separately, Dr. Bronner’s retain it in their soaps for its superb moisturizing qualities. They use natural vitamin E from sunflower seeds and citric acid from fermented tapioca to protect freshness. They don’t add any chelating agents, dyes, whiteners or synthetic fragrances, and instead use pure and powerful high-quality certified organic essential oils. All their soaps are biodegradable and nature-friendly and their bottles are made from 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic.

In today’s podcast, I interview David Bronner, the president of Dr. Bronners, and a guy who has been arrested for hemp activism, written a recently polarizing Huffington Post article on GMO’s , and who recently championed a drive towards labeling GMO foods in my own home state of Washington, a drive that unfortunately lost by narrow margins, but is now being revived in another form, which you’ll learn all about in today’s episode, including:

-The amazing story of the original Dr. Bronner…

-Why there are over 30,000 words on the label of Dr. Bronner’s soaps…

-What’s in Dr. Bronner’s soap…

-Why not all coconut oil is created equal…

-Why David Bronner recently penned this controversial article in Huffington Post on GMO’s

-What you can do to stop the toxic production of GMO’s on our farmed crops…

Do you have questions, comments or feedback about Dr. Bronners or about GMO labeling? Leave your thoughts below, be sure to check out all of Dr. Bronner’s products by clicking here, and visit OregonRightToKnow.org to help fight GMO crop production, to cast your vote, to donate and to stop the spread of toxic herbicides.

#298: The Best Remedies For Hot Flashes, Does N-Acetyl Cysteine Increase Glutathione, How To Increase Shoulder Mobility And Much More!


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

Oct 29, 2014 Podcast: The Best Remedies For Hot Flashes, Does N-Acetyl Cysteine Increase Glutathione, How To Increase Shoulder Mobility, and Getting Rid of Scar Tissue.

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 Twitter.com/BenGreenfield, Facebook.com/BGFitness and Google+.


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Need to fix your gut, build new muscle, or enhance the effectiveness of your probiotic? The brand new Greenfield Fitness Systems NatureColostrum has arrived. Click here to check it out now. 

Go to TrainingMask.com and use code GREEN1 for a 20% discount on your third lung.

November 17-21, 2014: Ben interviews 23 of the world’s leading experts in performance, recovery, nutrition, fat loss, brain, sleep and hormone optimization, and you get a free all-access pass. Check it out now at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/RevYourself.

Go ask your burning Obstacle Racing questions at ObstacleDominator.com for the brand new Obstacle Dominator podcast.

Other places you can meet Ben: Nov 2-9 London (meet-up and drinks at Skylon Restaurant, November 8 at 6pm), Nov 9-16 Israel, Dec 4-7 Unbeatable Mind Retreat.

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.

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.

The Best Remedies For Hot Flashes

Graeme asks: His wife has been experiencing pre-menopause hot flushes. Most of the supplements focus on eostrogen i.e. Are phytoeostrogens which they are NOT a fan of due to increased risk of breast cancer etc. She has been using Magnesium which is helping a LOT, plus some Vitamin E and they have also heard Kelp powder (iodine) helps. Do you happen to have any other suggestions?

In my response I recommend:
-This article on acupuncture and hot flashes.
-This article on black cohosh and hot flashes.
-Black Cohosh/dong quai (e.g. Thorne MetaBalance)
-Organic Maca Powder
-Vitamin E

Does N-Acetyl Cysteine Increase Glutathione?

Brian asks: He is interested in learning more about N-Acetyl Cysteine. He has read some articles that say it can help with a wide variety of health issues – helping to make things better for the body. One of the major questions he had was how does it work to reduce pre and post exercise oxidative stress? Also, could you recommend a pure quality product? Are there any side effects from taking NAC?

How To Increase Shoulder Mobility

Mark asks: In June this year he did a Tough Mudder and had fun and felt really good. The next day he played two, back to back, soft ball games. He felt a tweak in his shoulder every time he threw the ball but didn’t think much of it. From that day on he has had tightness in his shoulder and his range of motion was very limited (reaching for high things is difficult, playing golf is hard and even playing his dreadnought guitar is painful). It is getting better, very slowly, but it is still very tight in the morning and interrupts his sleep at night. Do you know why this is taking so long to heal, why it is tight in the morning and what he can do to speed up the healing?

In my response I recommend:
-Becoming A Supple Leopard book
-AllThingsGym.com mobility page (esp. shoulder flossing and lacrosse ball shoulder)

Getting Rid of Scar Tissue

Yvonne asks: About a year ago she ripped her thigh muscle doing an aerobic workout. She now has some scar tissue at the top of her leg. Now she gets a burning sensation in her thigh muscle and wonders what it could be. Can you tell her?


– And don’t forget to go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/love!

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!

Podcast music from 80s Fitness (Reso Remix) by KOAN Sound. Buy this track now!


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