Episode 334 - Greg Kelly, ND | Lead Product Formulator For Neurohacker Collective | Transcription
Transcription for the video titled "Episode 334 - Greg Kelly, ND | Lead Product Formulator For Neurohacker Collective".
Note: This transcription is split and grouped by topics and subtopics. You can navigate through the Table of Contents on the left. It's interactive. All paragraphs are timed to the original video. Click on the time (e.g., 01:53) to jump to the specific portion of the video.
This is 15 Minutes to Freedom. I'm your host, Ryan Nadell, and today I have an incredibly special guest here, actually live in the studio, Greg Kelly, ND, lead product formulator inside of Qualia, but I'll say the Neurohacker Collective. How are you, Greg? Great, great. It's wonderful to be here. It's my first time in Columbus, Ohio. I'm in town for the Arnold Expo, which has been a real treat. You're lying. It's Columbus. So Greg is from Southern California. And if you don't know what goes on in Southern California in March versus Columbus, Ohio in March, you probably saw snow for one of the first times in a long time. Yeah. I grew up near Boston. So snow – I played hockey as a kid. So I don't mind the snow. I wouldn't want to live in it. But to be able to walk around in it for one night last night was definitely a treat. Well, I love that because that would be what our choice would be here, too, in Columbus. We'd walk around just for one night and then have it go away. But here it is March, and we've been dealing with it since November. So either way, I'm honored to have you in the studio. We've spent some incredible time prior to hopping live on the mic just getting to know you and seeing the brilliance that is you.
A Discussion On Diet And Metabolism
Intuitive eating (01:22)
And there's so much more behind the scenes with Greg than just Neurohack Collective, Qualia, and we'll unpackage what all that looks like. But I like to start every interview, Greg, with an impactful question, something to grab as you're listening, something to hook you into the show. So Greg, with his ND background, we spoke a lot about intuitive eating. What is an intuitive eating? How would you bring somebody into learning about intuitive eating or walk them into what that even means? Okay. So intuitive eating to me would be in a sense, and I'm going to limit this to real food as opposed to anything that you could possibly eat. But it would in a sense to me mean that if I went to a menu, if I was at an all-you-could-eat buffet, if I'm trying to decide what to eat for breakfast at home, that I check in somehow inside, and some part of me, in a sense, directs my choices. And what I believe is the case, and certainly it's been true for me and true for some of the people I coached when I was in practice on this, is that you almost have to build a vocabulary like you would learning a new language. And what that means to me is typically eating a lot of a certain food in a fairly condensed period of time. So that in a sense, our brain learns about that food. And the way our brain learns about food is through flavor. So it's called flavor learning. In essence, that would mean that so you go maybe to a farmer's market, a store, and there's a new food, say a vegetable or fruit you haven't had before, you want to over the next couple of weeks, make sure you eat that in isolation at least a few times to kind of make it a super clear thing that this flavor can be learned about. And what we were talking about as part of the warm up is there hasn't been a lot of studies on this in humans, but in animals they can correct vitamin B deficiencies, which you can't taste B1 as an example. And going way back to the 1920s, I want to say it was a Dr. Adele Davis did a study in orphans and what they found in these like infants to, well, a couple of years old to, I would think it was preschool age, they were able to correct rickets of vitamin D deficiency. They were able to maintain health completely self-selecting their diet from what was real foods but with no adult supervision. So what they found in this, what I think of as the forerunner of intuitive eating, is that the kids that had rickets eventually on their own self-selected to try cod liver oil and once they did ate it frequently enough to correct the vitamin D deficiency rapidly. But once it was corrected, they didn't have vitamin D again, right? They didn't have the cod liver oil. Their intuition was they didn't need it anymore. So I would argue for the possibility that all of us can do this. But as we talked about, I think a lot of us have mucked up the software along the way. Yes. Yes, you talk about mucking up the software, and admittedly I have that big bold E before every episode, so I'll say before we fucked up the software on my side. I look at so much of the tribalism that we would have had instilled upon us right from our parents. Here's a plate of food. Here's different things. Here's what we are eating. Here's what I think you should eat. We never had a chance to experiment, right? Like we were instilled with a belief system prior to being able to determine what a belief system even was. That pertains to food as well, right? Like as you're discussing this orphanage study, you know, whether it's exactly right or not, right? Assuming that you've nailed it. Yeah, I would never trust 100% my recollections for things I've read a while ago, but the ballpark, I think, is pretty accurate. Yeah, so we get into that, we'll call it the software that you've been downloaded with, and that ties back to eventually some part of eating for your blood type in your estimation, right?
Blood type diets (05:18)
You've had a lot of experience with eating for the blood type and what that means. Yeah. So just for your audience, so the original diet was called One Man's Food, was the original book, and it was actually D'Adamo's father, who's one of the historic big figures in naturopathic medicine. And then his son went on to be really popular Isaac because one man's food never sold that much I remember once I had a hard copy of it and actually gave it to D Adamo because he hadn't seen one they just didn't make that many so I got recruited fairly quickly out of naturopathic school to see all the new patients in D Adamo's clinics, right? Literally right as the book had become super popular in the late 90s. So I have a, I would say like a good background in dealing with very sick people and using the blood type diets as the out of the box, like this is where we're going to begin. And what my experience was, especially for A's and O's, like you could bank on them. A lot of people were going to get good results just using that as their entry into eating better. B's or AB's were a little bit more, I would say, varied. Sometimes B's were interesting because naturopathically you'd almost always think of allergies being worsened by dairy. allergies being worsened by dairy. But periodically, I had people with really chronic allergies that started on the B diet, introduced yogurt, good cheese, butter, and their allergies improved. So there did seem to be a lot of usefulness in that diet as a baseline algorithm into starting to eat healthy. Yeah. And Greg, would you mind high level covering what eating for the blood type is, right? I've shared this on a couple of shows before. I don't say intuitively, right? Trial and error, whatever it would be seeing, I'll call it my inflammatory markers or lack of quality digestion. I know as an O positive blood type, I do way better with red meat sources, high fat greens, right? That's kind of, if I stay there, I'm good. When I start venturing out in other boxes, I know there's going to be some sort of problem for me. What about all the other blood types? What would be top foods for them to eat? So you've already told me you were an O. So that's a classic O diet. O's do great on lots of red meat, lots of vegetables. At least in a population sense, they don't make as much of the enzymes that break down starches, like disaccharides enzymes, right? And so grains are much more challenging for them. A's is almost the flip side of the coin. A's are the slowest to make high amounts of what we think of as the digestive, like the acid and other things, that would break down heavy meats. So A's, D'Adamo would have pitched them more as vegetarians. In my experience, personally, I do best on what I think of as more of a Japanese fishing diet or I'm Irish in my ancestry, like the Irish coastal diet. So I can do great on grains. I tend to do much better on fish than heavier meats. Lamb, pretty good. Lamb tends to be mostly grass fed, just the way it works out. So lamb of the red meats would be definitely the one that I do the best on. But anyways, I guess the way I would classically think of an A would be not vegetarian, but definitely does way better on fruits, meat maybe more moderation.
Considering an HRV biofeedback tool (08:48)
And the best meats would be fish, a little bit of lamb maybe, but definitely kind of the opposite of what does well for you. And what I saw in practice is occasionally you'll meet an O that's trying to be a vegetarian and really struggles with it. You often see post-nasal drip was a classic thing that we saw that almost always went away when they stopped eating grains and shifted to meats, where A's was just super hard for them to do as well long term on a heavy meat-based diet. It's funny to say it makes sense, but it does make sense, right?
Adaptogenic Training (09:28)
Like where the pieces and parts come from. But your history has lent itself to way more than just this base, I don't want to say base level, right? Like we're covering some very high-level things right now. But we started speaking about, I couldn't just say biohacking, right? I don't say I hate that term because it's cliche right now. It's the buzzword, whatever. I always look at biohacking now as just kind of undoing all the stuff we've done to ourselves. The blue blocking glasses I wear and the red light therapy, we covered this. Like how impactful it is to go outside and be in the sun and ground yourself, right? To take your shoes off and walk around outside for a little while. But we shared some, you shared some things with me about the changing back and forth between cold and hot showers and exposure to cold versus heat and what all these things look like. That was fascinating to me, right? I've done the cold shower, I'll call it cycling for quite some time, 30 seconds of hot water, 30 seconds for cold, back and forth. But you actually have a reason as to why that works and a backing to state that it works, not because I think it works. Yeah, well, so this really goes back to where naturopathic medicine came from, at least modern-day naturopathic medicine came out of two separate traditions. So one was called Nature Cure, and the other one would be what we would think of as European herbal medicine. So Nature Cure, literally, the name says it all, right? They used exercise, diet, and at the time, a lot to do with hot and cold elements, but particularly hydrotherapy. And so I guess the traditional wisdom coming out of that, and this was used way before antibiotics back in Europe and in the U.S. to deal with some infectious diseases. And in some cases, compared to the other things in the late 1800s, did remarkably well. But the general algorithm is always finish with cold, right? So typically you want to start with hot and then make the hot longer and the short colder. So if you would, to take your shower analogy, right? You don't have to do 30 seconds of hot, 30 seconds of cold. It would be longer to do maybe a couple minutes to even five minutes of hot. Really make sure that you've completely adjusted to the hot. And then it's the contrast you're looking for. So what I would do is I'll then step out of the shower, like, you know, out of the spray at least, and then turn it as cold as I can. And once I can feel with my hand, it's really got cold, then I step back in, right? You're trying to create that instantaneous change. And then 30 seconds of that, then step slightly out again, put it as hot as I can, which now is hotter the second time, for me at least. Okay. Right? And then step back in, do that again for, like, probably about two minutes, do another burst of 30, and then do one more. And so, like, what I'm trying to do is create as much contrast as I can, which here I was mentioning earlier, I can get way more difference between the hot and cold than I can, which here I was mentioning earlier, I can get way more difference between the hot and cold than I can in San Diego. But you can still, even in San Diego, create a lot of contrast. And the way our senses and skin's one of our major sense organisms function is based on change and specifically on proportional change. So the analogy, this is called Hook's-Weber law.
Does prioritizing hot and cold showers benefit ATP levels? (12:43)
We didn't talk about this, so this will be a new one. Perfect. So this goes back to the 1800s, and I've literally never seen it in a medical textbook, but you'll find it in psychology textbooks, go figure, right? So the idea is if we were in a dark room and someone came in with one candle, we would notice a big difference, right? But if we had a hundred candles on this table and someone came in and added one more, not so much, right? So that proportional change, it wasn't the quantity of one candle that was insignificant. It's the proportional change, right? The contrast. So our brain, all our senses, frankly, probably most of the things we adapt to are based on this idea of proportional change. So the more you can create proportional change, the less you have to do for a bigger, like a bigger gain. Right, so then now that I'm understanding some of the science behind the hot and cold shower, as I have thought or been told or read somewhere that it helps, let's say, increase mitochondria efficiency right at the base level I'd love to get a little more scientific with what's going on other than the fact of you're really warm and you're really cold Right like I I get that and the change and the adaptation of the change what's going on below the surface Well, I would say the first thing for sure is it's it's odd training for our nervous system, right? Because that's what's having to deal with it in Instantaneously when we create the change it's a training for our nervous system, right? Because that's what's having to deal with it instantaneously when we create the change. But then most things that would, in essence, stress our physiology, I guess stepping back, our mitochondria are powerhouses of the cell, right? So their main job, but not their only one, is to produce ATP, like kind of cellular energy. And ATP, I've read that we literally make and recycle about our body weight in ATP every day. So at any like sliver of a second in time, we have tiny, tiny amount, right? Way less than, you know, like milligrams, right? Right. But we are recycling so much in all of our tissues all the time that we make like a ton of it each day. So what happens, so you mentioned mitochondria, what happens both with exercise and with some of these cold therapies, hot therapies, but especially the contrast is that it's causing our system to think, okay, I need more ATP, right? For that contrast to deal with that change. So the adaptation we make to that is to make more mitochondria. So it's called biogenesis, basically like giving birth to new change. So the adaptation we make to that is to make more mitochondria. So it's called biogenesis, basically like giving birth to new ones.
The way that metabolism impacts our energy. (15:06)
So the way I don't, again, I don't know what you would have covered in the past with your audience, but you'll see usually like in a drawing of a cell, maybe two or three mitochondria, you know, somewhere in the cell. But the truth is we have hundreds to thousands in each cell, right? So it's much more of a network of mitochondria within a cell than a couple. And they're always reshaping themselves. So what would happen if a mitochondria get damaged, it'll fuse with another one, kind of water down the damage. But now you'll just have a bigger damaged one. When we do things like exercise, like anabolic type of exercise, sprint training, things like that, one of the adaptations we need is more access to more ATP quickly. So we make more mitochondria. So now we essentially will destroy some of the dysfunctional ones and replace them with newer, better ones. And so that network is super important. And what we do is constantly reshaping it. So what I think of is a lot of these longevity hacks. So the hot and cold, the intermittent fasting, exercise, and even nutrients can have a huge impact on reshaping that network. Well, I love that. And I want to jump into intermittent fasting here in a moment. But I feel like this is a perfect segue into some of what Neurohacker Collective is working in the background. Here we are, first weekend of March is when we're recording this. Blessing or curse for you, you're not going to hear this until you're probably listening mid-April or so. But you guys have been working on a formulation of a product that is going to help increase ATP production. Yeah. What is the product?
The 5 Things The ATP Formula Aims to Do (16:45)
How does it work? What are the mechanisms to it? That is something that is incredibly fascinating to me because that's more efficient energy. So really the target for the product was to do five things. So to boost NAD, we can talk a bit more, to increase ATP. Those two things are very connected. You need NAD to make ATP, and believe it or not, you need ATP to make NAD. And that second piece, you almost never hear anyone talk about. And then the next three things are activating AMPK, which is our master regulator of energy, right? So AMPK turns on and off all kinds of genes, but among those are things that turn essentially food and oxygen into ATP. A fourth thing is basically optimizing the mitochondrial network. So really creating, like doing a couple things, stimulating biogenesis, but also things that help you get rid of the damaged gunk that's built up over time. So it's called mitochondrial quality control. So think of like in the business sense, so like you'll hear TQM or, so that, but for your mitochondria. And then the last part would have to do with signaling. So things like insulin, thyroid hormone, those essentially dictate in a more global sense, the messages that tell our cells to turn things into energy, right? So those were the five big things that we were tasked with learning better and trying to solve for. And a sixth one that creeped in was body clock because it turns out all of these things have circadian functions, right?
NAD metabolome, life optimization (18:23)
Of course they would. So we've got like a body clock stack built in as well and then getting back to the nad ATP piece so nad plus is the you know the hot molecule right now right then I would say deserve deservedly so right I think some great strategies for boosting it and it's something that as we age for sure tends to creep down lower and lower, right? And that has ramifications. But what they, there's a term metabolome that you'll see sometimes in science papers. So the NAD metabolome, and really all that means in a non-sciencey way is there's a bunch of molecules that make NAD and there's a bunch of things that NAD, you know, can be made into, right? And so that metabolome, NAD is not the a bunch of things that NAD can be made into. And so that metabolome, NAD is not the only thing that shifts with aging. So other things also tend to be low with aging, but believe it or not, a whole bunch of things are actually normal with aging. So you have some things that in a young and an old person in the metabolome that are going to be essentially the same and others that are low. And one of the things that to me is interesting is, so we would say like a substrate in a product, right, for an enzyme, something that makes something, runs through the enzyme, you get the product on the other side. So if you look every place that ATP is used in the metabolome, the substrate is always normal and the product is always low. Okay. Right? So the unifying thing is there's not enough ATP to run the metabolome smoothly. So it's really well known that NAD as a redox molecule, you need to make ATP. But without enough ATP, that whole metabolome doesn't flow well. Right. Right. So you need both. So working on one in isolation to me and to Neurohacker just seems a little bit silly. So what's, I'll just assume as you were listening, you might not have formulated a product before. I've had a little experience, nowhere near what you've had, Greg. How long has the R&D cycle taken? Like from idea of, man, it'd be really great if we came up with this cool thing that did this other cool thing to I'm about ready to launch a product. Like you test and you – I call it life optimization, right? I optimize everything. You've optimized this formula for how long? And what's the process? The research started more than a year ago. And I would say the first iteration of the formula was probably late June first week in July okay the finalization of the formula was only about a month ago so and this one what we tend to do is that we've got a lot of willing guinea pigs right that have through our Facebook you know like us they might not even be taking qualia, but, you know, they like what we do. They expressed an interest that, hey, if you're going to need a guinea pig for something you're testing out, like, you know, my hand's in the air, just send it to me. So what we will do is we'll actually send out bottles of things that we'll make up and then ask them for their subjective feedback. You know, sometimes some of them had aura rings. So we asked, you know, anything objective you can get us as well, right? And then we take that feedback and we try to then, if we saw something that wasn't quite what we wanted subjectively, we'll try to tweak the formula and get it a little bit better. And as we were talking about earlier, we're big believers in the idea of response groups. So neurohacker doesn't believe that anyone can realistically make a complex product that's going to work for everyone. If you have vitamin D deficiency, taking vitamin D, that will work for everyone. But for like optimizing something, brain, cells, mitochondria, that's a different ballgame. And so what you would see at exercise is this idea of you know you have some people are super responders so this goes back to the navy so i'll tell the story if you don't mind love it no open forum so when i was in the navy um this guy i met was about my frame about my height and maybe at the time I weighed say 150 and he was about 140 so little leaner than me but you could tell like really good definition for his weight right and it turned out he had been really into bodybuilding when he was about four years younger was in an accident on a like somehow fell off a Navy crane hurt his back so it stepped away from it so despite not doing anything he was in you know fantastic lean shape so the two of us decided we went out um we call it westpac we deployed for six months so we were going to be lifting buddies on our deployment and literally it was so frustrating i i lifted with him almost every day we both supplemented protein powder i was way more sleep deprived just because of my schedule. But six months later, I maybe gained a pound, two pounds. He was like Superman. He was 185, just like muscle memory, we would call it now, right? His system already knew. But he was a super responder to what we did. And part of that was because of his past.
WestPac lifting buddy (23:24)
I was like functionally a non-responder, right? And then what you would also see is there's, you know, another group that would have been good responders. If we had more people that have been some people that benefited way more than me, and there might've been a couple of people that got hurt and had to stop, right? So those four things, super responders, responders, non-responders, negative responders, tend to color a lot of things. And I'm a big believer in taking principles from exercise and trying to apply those because, you know, adaptation, we've got that nailed in that field. Certainly. And we as neurohackers believe the same thing tends to happen in supplements. So when we formulate a product and we test it, we're always looking to see, you know, are there any super responders? You know, how big is the group of responders? Are there any non-responders? And, you know, lastly, are there any negative responders? And then we iterate and test to try to shift it so we get a lot of super responders and good responders. That's kind of our process. And so what we found with Eternus is where we kind of landed was the 35 and older, we had like literally I think it was like 97% good and super responders. In the 20 to early 30s, it was much more of a mixed bag. Like if we hit the nail on the head for this product, you would expect it's going to work better, obviously, as you age. So at that point, we're like, okay, we're there. This is, you know, now good enough to market. So there'd be no reason for this product. There should be no need to downregulate, right? This could be a consistent, this should be almost a staple, right? Is there a need for cycling? So we, in our testing, we cycled just like with quality. So we did five and two, just because, So we, in our testing, we cycled just like with quality. So we did five and two just because again, we're like we and me as well. Adaptation is huge. So almost anything for me, this would be my mindset that if you need to take insulin, obviously you're not going to cycle on and off insulin if you're a type one diabetic, but most other things it's the doing it and the rest from it, both, that get us the best response.
Kind of going back to that contrast, right? So we see the same with some of the fasting types of behaviors. The fasting does one thing, but the refeeding immediately after. So that next 24 hours, you do something else. And it's those two things you want. Yeah, so perfect segue into, we'll call it intermittent fasting or fasting, right? I've, I've been adhering to this. I'll call it 18 and six or 16 and eight, right? Not for me, it's more intuitive, right? It's interesting that you brought it up intuitive, you know, as far as a way to start eating. For me, it's felt best to not eat until midday and then kind of not cram things in, right? But I'm organically not very hungry after 7 p.m. Those just fit the window of when I want to eat and I eat until I'm not hungry anymore. And that's my protocol, right? That's what makes me feel good right now. But we shared some different ideas. I mean you said the founder of the company did a 30-plus day water fast and some stuff in Biodome 2 and some crazy stories, really anecdotal data now that we have about the whole response curve that I don't think it's spoken about very often in the fasting world. Yeah. So, like, fasting's really reemerged, right, or fasting-related behaviors with the biohacking movement, right? It would be one of the strongest tools in the toolbox, right? And it's free, so like how cool is that, right? But when, so going back to my, so my last year in the Navy was 88, 89. And at the time, I'd become a vegetarian, started reading, you know, all kinds of health books. And I want to say his name was Pavel, I will, I'm probably completely bastardizing it. But anyways, he was a big advocate of long fasts, like 30 fasts, 30 day fasts. And at the time, being a vegetarian, I was super lean. Like I struggled to even be 150, right? That was like really hard for me. And at the time I kept telling my girlfriend I was going to do this 30 day fast. She's just like, why? And I was just convinced, oh, he said it's super healthy. He was someone that going back into the 40s and 50s and earlier, fasting was a thing. A lot of the more what we would think of now as biohackers or functional docs, their toolbox was limited, so they fasted patients. And a couple things from that. One, the world was way less polluted then, right? So you can't really say that it's the same then as now, right? You go pump gas when you're on a fasting, you're going to be inhaling benzene, right? And one of the things that's been clear in anything where you fast or calorie restrict, you get toxins that were stored in your fat cells into circulation, but you need nutrition to get them out of the body. Right? So in those studies, what they found is you do a good job of putting them into circulation, but after the, like you go back to normal eating, that essentially puts them back in the fat cells along with fat, and now you actually have more concentrated toxins than before, right? So if you're going to do something long-term like this, it's super important to be as clean in all areas. So that's one thing. But you mentioned Biosphere 2. So this is one of my favorite studies, in part because of the duration, in part because of everything they measured. So the Biosphere 2, for the people that haven't heard of it, this is this dome that was out in the desert by Tucson, Arizona.
And in the early 90s, they had this group of scientists that went in for two years, I believe. And I wanna say there was eight of them, though it could have been nine, it could have been ten, but I think it was eight. So they thought that they'd be able to grow, produce enough food to augment what little they brought in. And as it turned out, they were wrong. Something about how they designed the system ended up, they could only grow enough food to eat about 1,700 to 1,800 calories a day, which isn't a huge deficit when you hear like an average is 2,000 calories. Granted, they were doing more physical work, so they probably needed more. So what you saw with weight is there was this initial big drop. But by six months, they didn't keep losing weight even though they continued to undereat. They essentially plateaued. And that constantly happens in calorie restriction when it's long-term. Our metabolism essentially slows down faster than we can reduce calorie intake. So you can't really win that game. Your metabolism outwits you. And so to me, that was interesting. And that was frankly expected. A lot of their blood work actually at that point looked good. If you were to look at insulin, blood sugar, those things look pretty cool then. If you looked at cholesterol, that also looked good. But if you looked at thyroid, not so good, right? Because thyroid is an adaptive thing. They were in essentially a hypometabolic state. So anyways, they eventually come out of Biosphere 2 and are allowed to eat as much as they want. And so what happened is they did, and they regained all that lost weight really quickly. All their blood work, it's fascinating to watch because you can literally see the before, like during, and then like this change within that first month. So they regained all the weight. And as the studies or the papers written on it, it was 100% as body fat. So in long-term calorie restriction, like the obesity field, they would call this body fat overshoot or dieting induced obesity. Basically, the idea is that dieting caused them to lose weight temporarily, but eventually they returned to their normal eating, that lost weight came racing back, but instead of regaining like a mix of good and bad weight, you essentially put on all bad weight. And the way I frame that is there's almost like there's this part of us that said, huh, I don't know when this idiot's gonna be out in a dome in a desert again for two years. Next time I'm gonna be better prepared. And better prepared for not eating enough is more body fat. So like tying back in to like you know the 30-day fasts and things in the naturopathic world that I heard about when I was back in to like, you know, the 30 day fasts and things in the naturopathic world that I heard about when I was back in school in the 90s. So a lot of my teachers had done long term fasting multiple times, all of them felt like it harmed their metabolism, like without question. Now, my, my pool of people isn't hundreds of people, it's, you know, a handful, maybe like seven or eight. But for me, that jaded me on this idea of like 30-day fasts are a good idea. I'm a huge fan of short fasts, like one day, five days, somewhere in that range. But in terms of long-term, not. What you talked about, which is usually called intermittent fasting, but I call it time-restricted eating, like essentially having a window of time every day where you eat your calories. That one I'm cool doing as long as you want. Like that one, you're not teaching your body that there's not enough. What you're doing is, I would say, working much more with our body clock in a usually optimal way.
One, three, five, and four-day options. (32:15)
So that one, I don't know of any downside for adults. I would be reluctant to do that with kids. Okay. In animal studies and young animals, when you do that, it messes up their heart and other things. So I would be super hesitant to inflict that on a kid or a teenager. Let them eat as much as they want when they want. But ideally, to the extent you can, make sure they eat some calories early in the day. But if they want to have a snack before midnight, I'd personally say go for it. Okay. And as you talk about the one, three, five-day fast, we're still doing potentially water, things like that? Or are you even okay with just complete abstaining from anything going in your mouth? Yeah, an air fast. No, I would never do without water. I grew up in Boston, but I've lived my adult life between Hawaii, Arizona, Southern California mostly. And I tried to, there's an old diet called the Gerson diet. I don't know if you've heard. Not familiar. Gerson, it ended up being a clinic down in Tijuana for cancer. But his initial diet was all of your liquid came from juices or broths, but mostly fresh juices. And his initial success with cancer was great. It was never replicated after that. But anyways, when we were in naturopathic school, one of my nutrition classes said, pick a diet and do that strictly for, I don't know if it was one week or 10 days. But anyways, I picked that one and it was summer in Arizona and I literally struggled to consume enough juice, right? Replacing all the water, but just juice was not even scalable then. And, you know, restricting all water I would never do. So anyways, I would say I think of the toolkit in terms of fasting as being comprised of a couple things. So the time-restricted eating, so what biohackers now call intermittent fasting, essentially creating a window every day where you eat and then a longer window or at least an equal window where you're not. So 12-12 would be the minimum, but better to do like a 10-16 or 10-14, maybe 8-16. Yes. So big fan of that. So that's one of the tools. And that's like as Ben Greenfield would do and a lot of biohackers do, that can be your staple. You can do that most days.
Eating Habits & Lifestyle Alterations
How to re-feed. (34:46)
I wouldn't say you have to do it every day. Like you're going to get benefits if you just do it most of the time, right? Right. So another tool would be something like a one to a three-day water fast. You could do it longer, but I think you're going to get, like honestly, probably 50% of the benefits in a day. For your digestive system you might get most of them in a day. For you know if it's autoimmunity you probably need at least two. Okay. Right if you're trying to make sure you go into keto and start to break down junk proteins in your cells you know two to three days somewhere in there. But after that you probably collected 90% of the benefits and you're chasing incremental gains each additional day. And so five would be the longest. But again, the key thing is it's creating the contrast. So it's the refeeding after that's also important. So I'd be much more of a fan of doing more shorter ones than fewer longer ones. And we say the refeeding after. I think that's something that doesn't get at least openly discussed enough. Let's say I take three days, I just drink water. As far as I've ever pushed it, I just want to eat. It's not even a thing of at that point, the emotional attachment to food for me decreases very quickly. The patterns and the habits that we run that we have to put something in our mouth, those all go away. But by day three, I'm like, I'm ready. It makes sense. How would you instruct someone to refeed during that next window? Do you adhere back to the, for me, 16-8? Do you eat as much as you can? Do you lean more eating for your blood type and backing in protein? How do we optimize that clean digestive system, really? You definitely don't want to come out on homemade chocolate chip cookies, right? Right. That shouldn't be the first meal, which I did once, so trust me on that one. But so the general consensus is you want to be gentle on your system coming back. So I think Survivor is a good analogy. Like they're not like water fasting, right? But they're calorie deprived. And most of the rewards are food. So what you see routinely in Survivor is in some of these rewards, they'll way overeat and then get super sick, right? Like their system had ramped down and instead of gently ramping it back up, they shocked it. And so I would say it's a good idea for at least the beginning half of that first day to ramp back in gently. And that means not a lot. Like eat, but try to eat something that you feel is something your body before the fast would have digested pretty well. Ideally a small amount. Soups and stews would be great, right, as an example. And then usually by the end of that day, you can have a regular meal. But if you're more sensitive, digestion, you might want to wait into the next day. But you don't need like a super long period. But the key thing, I think, is in those first few meals. So the breakfast and lunch, you want to be fairly gentle. Okay. That's how I would do it.
Intuitive eating considerations (37:40)
And usually for me, I have a pretty robust – my digestion has never been super sensitive in terms of getting disrupted easily. So I can get away with more, I think, than some other people. Yeah, I'm the polar opposite end of that spectrum. Like it's – my digestion has always been this unique variable for me, right, trying to figure out what works and how it fits into the equation, variable for me, right? Trying to figure out what works and how it fits into the equation, which leads me to another thing that we discussed as far as how things work on the intermittent fasting or on looking at intuitive eating or looking at eating for your blood type and realizing what some of these inflammatory responses could be. Like, how do we know if we're in alignment? I'll call it right. Like, okay, we're discussing're discussing some great hacks right now, some great tips, some great life optimization tools. But how do you know if it's working the right way? Well, I want to, before I get to that, can we go back to this one last fasting behavior I wanted to touch on? Hit me with it. And this one at A4M, which is the big anti-aging conference that's held every December in Vegas, this was by far the most common one doctors are using. And it's called The Fasting Mimicking Diet. The book, it's, there's a book, I think it's called Longevity Diet. Walter Longo is the author. So basically, the gist of this is you don't have to do a water fast. It's a calorie-restricted diet. He typically recommends five days. You could do it, again, like as little as two or three. And the studies just start to see, like within two days, you see big differences in immune cells. So the big picture of this diet is day one, you're going to cut calories down to about 1,100 a day. Day two through five, down closer to 800. And this might be a bit more for you, a bit less than someone. For those people that can't see, I'm much smaller. Only by a little. It's negligible. You'd squint, we'd be brothers. So anyways, that's about my target. But the key strategies for this is, so calorie deprivation is one. The short duration is another. But then it should be really low protein. So what happens is strategies for this is so calorie deprivation is one the short durations another but then it should be really low protein so what happens is protein triggers pathways mtor is the one they talk about right but basically that's a pathway to get some of the clearing out the junk proteins you want to shut down so his his protocol is really low protein. It's also plant-based. I wouldn't say, like if you wanted to have bulletproof coffee, I wouldn't, like I don't think the butter is going to make a big difference, frankly. But you obviously couldn't do a bunch of that and then eat much. So what he's, they've done a bunch of studies and there's a lot more going on. studies and there's a lot more going on and and he owns or leased basically his protocol to a company newt L Nutra I think it's called and the diets pro-line you can buy it and actually follow the exact study diet they send you the you know let's vegetable soups you know some nut bars and other things and some of the neuro hacker team has done that a few times. One of the neurohacker team and their husband were actually going to be doing it this week while I'm away. So we've got some experience with that and like it. You could also do your own hack of it, right, because you can follow his principles. So I did my hack of it back in January for three days. And so my hack of it was I made a bunch of brown rice, bought a bunch of avocados, made vegetable soup and had, you know, a couple almonds every day. And, um, and then the coming off of that, that first day off it, you basically would eat the same foods, but as much as you want. Okay. Right. And that on its own is anabolic so for me I'm lifted weights those all those days great workouts it didn't cut into that what they've seen in a few studies is actually despite eating less calories muscle mass tends to increase towards the tail end of it like you're almost getting rid of junk protein but not if you're lifting weights, you're still doing a good job anabolically on your actual lean mass. And then the period immediately after that, the refeeding is super anabolic, even eating, you know, like, you know, rice, avocados, and more vegetable soup. So, so for me, three days, I like on the scale weight lost four pounds, obviously, a lot of that's water weight, right? It's not the goal of it. But the refeeding, you instantly put that on. So that's, I would say, the newest hack that I'm aware of and definitely the one that's being embraced by the medical community in terms of the fasting-related behaviors. It's interesting to go down the rice. For you, what you just shared, the rice and avocados and almonds, things like that. So with me, I'm going to revert back to the blood type. I hear rice and all of a sudden I'm like, oh man. No, no. For you... O' Yeah. So I'm a green smoothie guy, organic. I do at least a half pound, three quarters of a pound of spinach every morning. Blueberries, wild, fresh, organic blueberries, a little Cylon cinnamon for blood sugar regulation, and then high-filtered hydrogen pump full of water, right? Like all that fun stuff. Would that be enough, right, as far as – I'd have to do multiple, you know, and that's the other question. I think he's anti-fruit during it. So, like, the idea is that he's trying the diet that he created and that's been studied, and he's actually patented it, right? So the fasting mimicking diet, he owns that, right? So when I would say I didn't do the fasting mimicking diet, I mimicked a fasting mimicking diet, right? And there's a blogger, Quantified Bob, I think. Yeah. You can go on. If you search for it, Mimicking the Fasting, Mimicking Diet, he actually writes about his experience. It's super detailed. But my recollection is fruit might not be part of it. I don't remember fruit being. I would have eaten fruit if I thought it was part of it. Of course. So I think the key thing is plant-based, lots of vegetables. I know the Prolon, what you get is largely vegetable soups, you know, nut bars. So nuts are good. And the key idea is low protein, low calories, complex carbs, and lots of good fat to fill out the calories you are eating. So there's obviously a huge variability in what you could do. You could do sweet potatoes as an example. I think Quantified Bob did a bunch of sweet potatoes. I used brown rice. I did throw some sweet potatoes in my vegetable. But for me, the key, I didn't measure out things. I don't really think you need to, right? I was definitely hungry by the end of the first day. I was definitely in keto the second day. And so really, you're just trying to, in a big picture, at least map to some of that. If you want to do it like a hack of it, if you want to do the official one, just Google Prolon. So, okay. And during that, you know, the 800 calories, one meal, three meals. Three is what he says. Okay. Yeah. And, um, and I think, you know, so these are obviously super small meals, but vegetable soup, it can eat a decent portion of vegetable soup and not get many calories. Yes. So I love that information. I appreciate it. It doesn't fit anywhere in the organic flow of our conversation.
Stressors and intuition. (44:54)
But as we were catching up before we hopped on the mic, we had a discussion about the intuitive eating and going to a restaurant. You landed in Columbus yesterday. You looked at the menu. And intuitively, you kind of just knew what your body needed, what you wanted. And I fed back to you, well, what if intuitively, right? I've got a unique, you know, insulogenic response or maybe I'm carrying more adipose tissue, right? Maybe I'm a little more overweight, fat, however we want to, you know, put that flag in the ground. And I'm instantly drawn to, I open the menu and I just want cake, right? Like cake is what I'm having for dinner tonight. And you dove into a whole nother protocol and some mindsets behind that as far as, I'll call them stressors and things like that. But I would love for you to share that piece in part because I believe we'll have a whole secondary conversation about stress and what that looks like and what we itemize as stress and identify as stress and how to help manage that. But I'd love to know, right, we spoke about sleep. That's really what it comes down to and sleep deprivation and some studies, I believe, with mice and some really crazy stuff. Well, I think maybe a good way to lead into that is think of, like, I'm sure some of our listeners will have been hungover before, right? So what do you feel like eating when you're hung over? Probably not a vegetable soup, salad, right? Like greasy diner food, right? Starchy, loaded with fat. Why is that, right? So that's, to me, that's the question. Like why not, like one, I would say a lot of people's intuitions aren't great. But let's assume for the second that maybe they are being steered in the adaptive direction. So why is that, right? So the animal study I had mentioned to you, so this goes back to the 90s. And I've never seen another study that's tried to replicate it or be similar. But in essence, way back then, they knew that if mice were sleep deprived, then they eventually go into a catabolic state. So they start to lose muscle mass, and then they keel over pretty quickly. So what they decided to do was, we'll have this study where we'll feed sleep-deprived rats a normal chow, kind of the normal diet, controlled amount of food. We'll feed another group that same diet but spiked with much more protein, so a high-protein, you know, normal amount of food. And then they decided, well, for this third group, we'll just create some, like, high-fat chow and let them do whatever they want. So the idea, at least I think my recollection is their hypothesis, was that the high-protein diet was going to do better than the other ones, right? It's going to sustain muscle tissue, prevent catabolic response, happy, happy. And what they found was that was the best survival came in the group that was allowed to eat as much as they want of the high fat chow. And again, my numbers might be off, but my recollection is they ended up eating about two and a half times more food or more calories than the other ones, but they outlived them. So something about their intuition in that context of that stress of sleep deprivation that led them to eat not only high fat food, but way more of it was adaptive is how I think of that result. Right. And so, you know, the first thing if back when I was in practice, if someone came in and told me that, like Dr. Kelly, like, you know, if I did that, I would be eating a pint of ice cream every night. And I would be the guy at the diner eating, you know, the hash browns and the bacon, da, da, da. Then it's like, okay, what might be causing you to choose those food? And can we work on that? So it's sleep initiative issue, which I was in practice in the New York, roughly the New York City area. I was in D'Adamo's clinic at the time, we were just over the Connecticut line. So most of our patients were, you know, worked in New York or lived in New York or both. And so sleep deprivation was a huge thing. And at the late 90s was the dark ages of sleep. We know so much more about the ramifications of sleep now. But at the time, not so much. Body clock disruption is another super common one. Stress in general, right? Like stress in any of its manifestations. So I guess stepping back, we've got this part of our brain, the hypothalamus, that is the master regulator for a lot of behaviors. Basically everything to do with survival. part of our brain, the hypothalamus, that is the master regulator for a lot of behaviors. Basically everything to do with survival. So what we've got located there is our appetite center, our center for thirst, heat regulation, sleep regulation, heat reproduction. And then the last thing is our body clock is actually listed there. And so what it seems like to me is we do almost like a juggling act. So when any of those needs aren't being met, the one that compensates is appetite. Now that might not always be true, but it's a general rule of thumb I've seen. So say in the reproductive one, romance for women tended to be a theme in practice. Romance need wasn't being met for women tended to be a theme in practice, right? Romance need wasn't being met. Appetite tended to go up, right? Movement, or I'm sorry, thirst need doesn't go up for sure. Appetite compensate, right? We can actually make water from metabolizing food, right? Yeah. Especially carbs. So the first thing I would do is which of those might not be getting optimized because that's a much more easy place to start, right? Maybe not for that person. Maybe they don't want to sleep more, but you get them sleeping more. Oftentimes the craving takes care of itself. So I guess coming out of both that animal study, my personal experience with patients, how I know the brain works, the first thing that I would think of, oh, they're feeling like they're craving things that they think aren't good for them. Well, maybe some part of them knows better. They're not good for them in the sense in a vacuum. If they had no stressors, they would be good. But in the context of their life, this may be a better choice than eating salads. I'm not going to presume I know better than their intuition, I guess is what it boils down to.
Adjust your sleep schedule. (50:49)
And then I'm going to work around the edges. And if we can't then, you know, eventually correct that craving through optimizing these other areas, that's when I would step back and rethink things. But I just haven't seen that. So that's fascinating to me. And it's fascinating all this. I have a suspicion that you are a wealth of knowledge that pertains to sleep. Oh, yeah. Sleep and body clock. Yeah. And how to really get into this arcadian rhythm and how to recalibrate that. Like you see as I'm sitting in the studio and you as you listen know like I have aura rings always on my finger. I got a whoop on my wrist. I try to track and monitor literally every variable in my life. I believe I can't make a healthy decision if I don't have some data behind it. And so I personally have been going through this trying to figure out, okay, whoop starts screwing me. I need nine hours of sleep. My life in general, I'm like, I don't know where I'm going to pull off nine hours of sleep. So how can I then get either more sleep cycles or get more access to REM and deep sleep while I'm in that sleep? How can I increase the quality, right? And what can I do to maximize or optimize the time that I am sleeping, realizing that I'm in bed by 9.45, up by 4.45, 5 o'clock in the morning is just kind of what I'm choosing to do. I hate to say I have to, but that's the choices I'm making. And I'm fascinated to know the tips and tricks you could offer for sleep, right? Not only recalibrating circadian rhythm, but quality of sleep and just download, right? You have the gifts in this room. I'm just listening.
Where do you usually listen to the podcast? (52:11)
I definitely don't know everything about sleep. But recently, we do a podcast at Neurohacker Collective called Collective Insight. And I hosted my first one. It actually just went live. But I actually recorded it back in December. You know how this works, right? Of course. And Greg Potter was my guest. He works for humanos.me. And I saw him speak at the Biohacker Conference in Toronto in September. And his expertise is in sleep, circadian rhythms, and how they interact with food and metabolism. So it was like super great. And I would say he's smarter than me in this, right? Because he's focused on it. But I'm no slouch. But so one of the things for me, there was a book called Lights Out from the late 90s. And what its premise was that maybe a lot of these metabolic issues we're seeing aren't a food thing.
How light affects the body clock (52:57)
They're like a sleep thing or like a darkness thing might be a better way to describe it. So, but much more sleep body clock, right? So that's what led me at the time to thinking, oh, sleep's a piece of the puzzle. No one's really talked about it. Everything he said in this book makes a huge amount of sense to me. And I had been, when I was in the Navy, my first job was in engineering, and there was only two of us that could stay on the watch I was on. So if we were out at sea, basically if the boiler was lit off, which usually meant we were out at sea, but it would be lit off before we actually left for a day or two. One other person and I, the Navy calls it port and starboard, but six hours of watch, six hours not watch, rotating, right? The way it worked out, I always had the midnight to six in the morning, noon to six at night, and then you still had to do your job. And if you wanted to work out, you had to squeeze that in. So sleep was the one thing that got sacrificed, right? You at best had a six-hour window to get that, but you were constantly disrupted to sign things and whatever. So I had some pretty, you know, like firsthand experience of sleep deprivation. And for sure, I remembering back to that time, even from the 90s, because it was only, you know, 10 years in the past, then I remembered, like, I would just go to the, like the Gidonk machines, we call it, but basically, you could always buy burritos and other things and heat them up or have someone heat them. And I would just eat a ton of food, right? But I didn't have this, I guess, anything pieced together. So I guess for me, the key realization coming in the 90s was sleep and body clock were huge. I should learn about these because they're hugely important and color almost everything else right if we don't get those nailed it's really hard to nail everything else so around 2001 i taught the advanced nutrition class at a college of naturopathic medicine in bridgeport rhode island what do you think my first two lessons were on sleep body clock and then sleep right and like both what they do and how we can start to impact them right because i just at the time and still feel like if we don't get those nailed everything else we're kind of chasing effects like even the the um the intermittent fasting like the you know eating and windows they've studied that and shifted when the window is. Now, someone healthy like you that doesn't have metabolic issues, insulin, blood sugar, you can kind of have that window when you want.
Sleep And Health
How Much Sleep is Enough (55:26)
But there's some people that are prone to that. If you have a window, say you start eating your first meal from mid-afternoon, only eat for eight hours, but that stretches to bedtime, you can mess up people's weight, shape, and metabolic health, right? They're doing a good thing, but the timing of it's not working. So Greg Potter, in that interview, he was talking about that research and how shifting earlier in the day is the best way to optimize it. Not to say for everyone, because we're all unique, and some of us won't need that, but that would be out of the box, the optimal. Like if you're going to try this, you know, make sure you eat early in the day and try to end your last meal and have at least a few hours between sleep. And when you say a few hours, four, five, six? I would say minimum two. Okay. I guess the way I think of it, and it changes seasonally, is shoot for eating most of your calories when the sun's up. Yeah. So that would be the – there's more swing in that in the summer than there is in the winter. Yeah. So if you live in Ohio and you're trying to do this, you have about three and a half hours to eat for three months. No, but it's – I get it. That makes sense. The other thing that came out of Lights Out was this – his premise was that we needed more sleep potentially seasonally. So in the winter more and in the summer less, which I've seen play out for me at least. So I won't fight that. When the lights changed, I didn't – I'm more like you. I go to bed usually before they change the clock, 10.30-ish. When they change it, like 9.30-ish, I don't really adjust to the clocks. I just keep the same schedule honed to the sun. But if my body sleeps a little bit longer in the winter, I don't sweat it. I feel like, oh, that's probably seasonally appropriate. And in the summer, if it sleeps less, but I don't, other than an airport call, I don't set alarms. It's whenever my body wakes me up, I get up and head to the gym. So that's, I think, not having this fixed idea that we need seven hours sleep, eight hours of sleep, whatever, but making sure that each night we do our best to optimize that night and get as much as we need. Heavy lifting, you might need more. You know, an off day from lifting, a detraining week, you might need a little bit less. Right. Right. So I think, like, it's always important for me to put things in context and not think it's hard and fast, right? So for me, the most important thing is do or I don't, I feel refreshed that day. And if I didn't, even if, you know, my, you know, sleep tracking device said I was in deep sleep, I probably, their algorithm might not be on that night. For me, right? The other thing, for me, a huge amount of sleep and body clock is optimized by what we do early in the day. Right, so my normal routine in San Diego, I get up, I'd say Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, I go to the gym first thing in the morning. So usually it's sun just coming up.
Blue light exposure, (58:28)
Then finish that up, go have a cup of coffee. I can actually sit outdoors all year and do that, right? So I do. I'll usually do a little on my computer while I'm there, but that morning sunlight exposure is super important. And then on the tail end of the day, the key thing is to minimize blue light exposure, which I'm sure you've talked to your audience about. Of course. So I've had blue blocking glasses for like way before it became a biohacking thing. I've had them for like 14 years. Wow. And I recently got the red ones from Asprey's True Dark to experiment with those. And those – like I can watch TV with the orange blue blocker ones. Those ones are completely another level absolutely well that's fascinating I mean that's one of the things I've covered this on the show right getting all the way down to temperature in the bedroom before you sleep right then 66 68 degrees perhaps and all the ambient light that exists right as you're listening think about your bedroom right now sure you have curtains up but there's a street light there's a nightlight for you know our daughter in our house and there's there's all these light, there's a nightlight for our daughter in our house, and there's all these light sources that are inherently not really how we were wired. You go back in our genealogy to sleeping outdoors underneath the stars. There wasn't more light coming from the side that was interrupting our sleeping patterns. Yeah, we actually had darkness, right? Yeah. Like evolutionarily, like humans had darkness, right? Stars, you know, moon periodically. Right. We're now finding actual darkness is hard. And they've used enforced darkness for bipolar disorder. Oh, it works. It can work really effectively, not for everyone, but like it works much better than most other things do. And usually they'll enforce a darkness period starting out from like six at night till six in the morning. Fascinating. So I would think of almost darkness as a deficiency in the modern age. So anything we can do to promote that, but at least limiting blue light exposure gets us part of the way there at night. We definitely want blue light early in the day. And so what I do, like one of my hacks I've been experimenting with since seeing Asprey speak at A4M in December, he's got a couple of variants of his blue blocker things. So he's got one that are called the Daywalkers. Yeah. No, they're actually even clearer than that, right? Oh, the new ones, yeah. They actually look slightly yellow if you look at them in the right angle, but they look clear if you're looking at them visually. Okay. And what they say is they block about 40% of the blue light. And so what I do, because I'm on a computer a lot, reading research, blah, blah, blah, right? And so usually by 1.30 to 2 in the afternoon, I shift to putting those on. Okay. And what I found almost immediately is my eyes, for a couple years now, watered a lot, especially first thing in the morning, and it completely knocked that out.
So I think it definitely de-stressed something visually for me. So that's been a hack that I've enjoyed. But I think naturalistic lighting, punctuated, you know, like colors are a big thing in lighting, right? Natural light's a rainbow. We can see with a prism certain colors are more expressed early in the day, certain ones less. Like so blue early in the day is super good. Another cool thing is tryptophan. Is that a supplement you've done? Yeah, of course. Okay. So tryptophan's an interesting amino acid because've done? Yeah, of course. Okay. So tryptophan is an interesting amino acid because it really can, it goes in three different directions biochemically. So obviously it can go serotonin, which then can go melatonin. How much of the tryptophan in your diet do you think goes that route? Like ballpark percentage. Oh gosh. 15%, 20%? Probably less than five. And early in the day, maybe as little as one. Because I saw some stuff about it being an action energy source versus... Right. So the main pathway for tryptophan is it's called the kynurene pathway. But basically, it can fork off in a bunch of directions. But one of the end products is NAD, the molecule we talked about earlier, right? So tryptophan, roughly it's about 60 milligrams of tryptophan creates one molecule of NAD, or like one gram of NAD. One molecule is wrong. So like it's a 60 to 1 conversion. But there's a lot of things that are made along that way that are active in our brain. Okay. Both, you know, independent of that. So one of the things, if you were to augment the diet with tryptophan early in the day, so they've done studies on this, like augmenting breakfast cereal with high amounts of tryptophan. And tryptophan is an interesting amino acid because our average daily intake is super small. It's like 500 milligrams to 800, maybe a little more depending on your diet, but that's not a lot, right? So you can augment with 100 milligrams, 200, 400 milligrams. You're actually moving the needle a lot. With something like tyrosine, we get a lot of it in the day. So we've got some tyrosine in qualia, but we're not going to move the needle tremendously with tyrosine. With that same amount of tryptophan, we'd be moving it dramatically. So in these studies, one of the things they found is tryptophan at breakfast helps sleep at night. Just augmenting that pool, leaving the complex adaptive system now free to choose how to use it. Probably a lot of it got used for NAD. Maybe some's left to use melatonin later at night. But melatonin at night definitely goes up when you take tryptophan at breakfast. And if you also then get morning bright light in the period after that, it goes up even more. So those two things at the start of your day have a huge effect at the end. Makes sense.
Seratonic and Melatonin (01:03:56)
So I've done research. I feel like saying research to you is like it's an abomination of using that term. But as far as I've done research on gut health versus serotonin production, right? And then that pathway of serotonin to melatonin, which, you know, aids in deep sleep. Yep. How scientifically proven is that right? And gut health and microflora and gut microbiomes and how we're metabolizing everything that we eat. And then that pathway of serotonin versus melatonin. Like am I sniffing down the right path right now or are you like way off base? It's definitely there. I mean we have way more gut microbiota organisms than cells, right? So this is a hugely important thing. And for sure science research would show that we make lots of neurotransmitters, melatonin, serotonin, dopamine, like all these brain chemicals in our gut, and that there's this gut-brain communication. But in terms of individualizing things, like what strategy you would use to optimize that, that's where I think we're not quite there yet. Like we just don't know.
AI-based personal gut microbiome analysis (01:04:58)
Right. Right, so, and it's, like this goes back to even when I was with D'Adamo and the blood type, one of the things, so blood type, the idea that blood type would affect like what you eat, right. Or how you respond to what you eat seems kind of ludicrous at face value. Right. Right. Just like, why would this like type of blood matter? Right. But the, the thing that dictates what your blood would be typed are essentially these antennas that hang off your blood cells, right? So those same antennas line your digestive tract and line all kinds of other cells. Like really any place where our inner world meets some kind of outer world, right? And so because of that, it's not just a blood thing, right? It's a, what I think of as adherence, anti-adherence, right? So like in the bacterial world, we could be exposed to a bacteria, but if it can't stick to our cells and just slides off, we're going to be happy, happy, right? And blood type dictates a lot of that. And those antennas are constantly, constantly our you know stomach lining is constantly being shed and replenished and some of what it's being put into the gut microbiome are these antennas right so our blood type probably disproportionately affects our gut microbiota because that's a constant food supply I think that's 24-7 where our fiber, our other things in our diet are much more sparse. So whether it's because of that, because of other things that our cells are sloughing off, it's really hard to change our gut microbiome dramatically. We can definitely change it. Radically overhaul your diet, for sure it's going to change. It also changes with sleep, changes with exercise. So what part is cause and what part of effect, I don't have an answer to. I do know one of our recent podcast guests, and I haven't listed into the podcast, is Navi Jain, but I did hear him at A4M. And he owns a company called Viome that tests gut microbiota. And what he said, so Longo was the guy on the panel. Longo's the fasting mimicking diet guy. And it was fascinating because Longo was basically like, oh, my thing is for everyone. And Jane's like, no, no, we've like, I don't know about your thing, but everyone we test diets a little bit individualized. Yeah. Right. So, I mean, I think we're getting there. And I think it's great that you know these things and are talking to your audience about them. I just don't think I have the answers, if that makes sense. That makes perfect sense. I mean, from my very archaic minds, it pertains to the human body. Like when I think of the bombardment of antibiotics that I would have taken over the course of my life. You're young as a child. I remember getting pink penicillin and the spoon in the mouth and just take it and then every time anything goes wrong in our body, it's traditional medicine, you know? Start with some sort of antibiotic. And for me, fortunately or unfortunately, I'll use it as a fortunate example, this time last year I had the one and only massive abscess I've ever had in my life from anabolics. When I say massive, Greg, my legs would not have fit in my jeans right now. I have a four-inch scar on my left leg where it was lanced open and drained, and I had two complete tubes of packing gauze put in there that I had to keep going out and getting taken.
Doesn't much matter, right? But we're proud of what we've been through. But I was put on such a massive course of antibiotics for 30 days. And I would be remiss to say I remember what the course was, but it was, upon doing research, being given the prescription, it was three or four times more than what, quote, unquote, a normal dose of that antibiotic would have been. And I've noticed such an abnormality then in my digestion since that point of not being able to, I'll say, recalibrate to my own homeostasis Right and trying to figure out okay. How do these pieces go in like it? I know meat and dairy or I know dairy and eggs have never really felt that good to me Allergy or not they just don't feel good Carbohydrates don't feel that good Can all of a sudden chicken doesn't feel that good? now White rice does it like it's almost i'm just like clearing off all these things and it's okay where what's the systemic reason that's where this came from right of course ignorance whatever i want to say for the original incident of an abscess right but move that to the side for a second and just massive course of antibiotics and so i start questioning, I don't want to bash traditional medicine, right?
Types Of Carbohydrates, Gut Microbiome And Personal Medicine
It's got its places, but just the propensity of just here, antibiotic, antibiotic, antibiotic, and what that's really doing long-term to the way that our internal wiring is calibrated, right? And so as I see you saying, you don't have it all figured out, Lord knows I don't have any of this stuff figured out, but have you seen in your days of practicing and your understanding, right, when we're taking big course of antibiotics, of course, that's eliminating good and bad bacteria. How quickly are we able to reproduce the good bacteria without jump-starting that? You know, when I was in practice, I didn't routinely measure anything that would have given me that intel. And I really can't think of many. I ended up disproportionately seeing lots of people with autoimmune diseases, cancer. Just because his book was so popular. When I first got there, I think we had a year and a half waiting list. It was crazy. But because of that, and I could lean on him, right? Because he brought me in, and so he was always available. And obviously he had decades of experience plus his dad's experience to build on. So, you know, so someone coming off antibiotics weren't kind of my bread and butter. Of course. So I don't, you know, I don't have like what I would say any answer to that. What I would say is like the naturopathic way would be to do probiotics, but also to do what we would think is almost digestives, things that stimulate. So, like, Gentian, have you ever heard of? I've not. Gentian would be what you'd get in the old bartender's bitters at a bar, right? It's just a really bitter root. And a lot of the old-timer nature paths didn't have a big box of tools and I remember when I was in school my classmates wanted to learn like the functional medicine right this pathway and this data that right like kind of outsmart things and some of these old-timers just did the same algorithms right you had something digestion going on we're gonna simplify your diet, put you on bitters. Usually it was gentian wormwood, was like a classic combo.
A vs O vs Bs (01:11:12)
And the way you would do that, it was a tincture. So you'd put a little bit in water, sip it, you know, half hour or so before meals, and then just do that to kind of get the digestive system better prepared to take in food. So one of the things with O is this is like a generality. There's this hormone called gastrin that we release, and it's gastrin that causes our lower sphincter to tighten, at least one of its actions, and then it warms up like HCL, right? So this may be different now, but back when I was with D'Adamo, there was a study that showed O's go from zero to high gastrin super quick, like within 15 minutes. A's took like 45 minutes. So classically, like A's, you know, for like what I would say, if you're an A and you want to eat a steak, do a little bit of gentian before because gentian promotes gastrin, right? So whether that would help you or not, I don't know. But like that would have been like an old time strategy is let's do some like digestive kind of things, right? To warm up the digestion. The other thing that I saw in practice is regular meal timing becomes really important, right? A lot of what our body does is based on it guessing what's coming next. And digestion is super tricky, especially once it gets like off the rails. So when we're trying to get it back on the rails, being much more regimented about when we eat can be really important. Because then it lets it line up everything together, kind of synchronized. So that would be another thing. And the last piece would be, again, like the body clock. Like your window is later, right? Like, you know, have you experimented shifting that earlier for a bit to see if that makes a difference? Of course not, but I'm going to when I start tomorrow. I mean, it might not, but that would be, those would all be experiments I would run if it was someone I was coaching. Okay. And the easiest one would be the shifting of the timing. Yeah. I was coaching. And the easiest one would be the shifting of the timing. Yeah. I love it. And there's zero reason in my life why I can't start that tomorrow. I appreciate that sincerely. I feel like we've had such an impactful conversation about all the brilliance that you have inside of you. We haven't shifted much into the Neurohacker Collective, what that is, what it stands for, I say mission, vision, and values, the core competencies, right? I'd love to unpackage that with you, right? You've obviously played an integral role in getting the company to grow to whatever the size it is now, right? For me, I laugh when they say I see it everywhere because it's the community that I have a hand in or eyeballs looking at, right, to me. You guys are a multi-billion dollar company in my mind. Right, and laughingly I've got to know one of your counterparts inside Neurohacker Collective. And he's like, no, no, we're still a startup. And I'm like, how can you be a startup? He goes, no, we're all wearing like 12 hats and we have titles but none of them really matter. Like, man, this is brilliant. Well, and Ben, the person you were talking about, like literally wears the most hats. He's the guy that everyone turns to when they need something. Yeah. So, yeah, we're only about, I think, officially about three years old. So we're relatively new. I would think of ours as like performance optimization.
Neurohacker Collective (01:14:37)
So we were founded by two brothers and one of their close friends. All of them, you know, very different backgrounds. But kind of the gist of funding was one of the brothers had cooked himself and, you know, went down to Mexico, did a lot of IVs, a lot of cutting edge stuff to, you know, kind of get back his brain basically, right? His brother's super smart. Like I've met legitimately a handful of people that, you know, blow my socks off in terms of like savant level brilliant. His brother is one of those guys, in my opinion. D'Adamo was another one. So he basically tasked his brother with, you know, can we put something in a pill that would help people, maybe not 100% of what I, you know, helped me, but to get their brain back on track. that was really the vision of neurohacker and they started with the brain figuring if we can get the brain better in more people we're gonna make a much better world so like that just seemed like the best entryway into it right and the idea of the collective is that we smarter than me so we have our narrow team but we have feelers and do a lot of things so we've got a bunch of what we consider advisors. They're not people that work for us. They like us.
Sacred Function AriFSalgiaoved Emergency Lights (01:15:51)
They're willing, you know, we run ideas by them or want to test some things with some of their patients. They're like happy to do it. So the collective comes in both in terms of, you know, what I would think of as the biohacker movement in general but you know we try anyone that that is a potential good resource we're just trying to constantly call like we don't feel that we're competing with other people if there's something that we can you know help you with and you can help us with let's let's figure out what that is yeah so um so the brain was the first thing and that's's where Qualia came in. And Qualia, you know, I think Ben Greenfield was one of the early people that experienced it and raved about it. And what happened is Qualia took on such a life that it's kind of funny. Like, there's a coffee shop right around the corner from our office. And back this summer, I was having, you know having maybe like 10, 30, 11 in the morning. I walked down there to get a cup of coffee with my computer and started talking with this woman that was there. And she had never heard of Neurohacker Collective. Didn't mean anything to her. And then I said, well, we make this product called Qualia. She's like, Qualia? Oh, I know all about Qualia. And so like Qualia, we're much more known as Qualia than we are as Neurohacker Collective. So Qualia is our first product and to date really it's been literally our only one. We've got a couple of variants of it. And we're starting, like I said, we'll be releasing a longevity product. I've been working on a nootropic shot, so kind of a five hour energy factor that would, like I've tested a lot pre-exercise personally. And so that's been a fun project. We're gonna work on sleep over the next couple months. And sleep could go quickly, it could be two years. We don't know, right? Because with Oura rings and all this wearable tech, we can actually figure out if what we put together and formulate and iterate is making a difference or not, right? Certainly. If we can't make a difference, no point in putting more noise on the market. If we can get something that works for, you know, a significant proportion of people, then we would eventually market it. So what I would say, like with the hacking in our title, we're really about performance optimization, right? There's certain things we feel almost everyone would benefit if they had more dialed in. So brain performance, cell mitochondria performance, sleep. Daniel would say membrane health is another one. So there's this theory of aging, membrane rate model. But basically the idea is that the stability, structure, function of our membranes dictates how quickly we age. So what you'd see in animal models and centenarians, their membranes are just healthier. Yeah. And able to slough off damage, not get damaged by oxidative stress, et cetera. So we're calling that neuro lipid, but, um, that's another project that I've been working on since I would say October ish. Okay. So like those are the near term roadmap. Um, some will come to light, maybe all of them will, but it's, you know, it's a great company because, you know, we are definitely committed to making sure before we release something, we've tested it.
Musmiss Just East Cell Membrane Horona] (01:18:59)
At least getting the desired result for a large enough proportion of people to make it something that we feel good about having our name behind. Absolutely. One, it's fascinating that we're having this conversation here at the Arnold Classic, right? It's the office, but it's the weekend of the Arnold Classic. Because I shared with you before we started the show, I don't know if it was last year or the year before. I know you've been with them for 10, 11, 12 months, whatever it's been. But there was a booth presence here that was very small, just a single standalone booth. And I'd already been getting served ads or had already bought, we'll call it the two-bottle formula, the two-bottle selection. So there used to be an AM and PM, if I remember correctly. Well, we call it two bottle selections. It used to be an AM and PM if I remember correctly. Well, it was, we call it two-step, but it was without food and then with food. So like I would think of it like the way I take it, because I still take that periodically, is one first thing in the morning before the gym, one with breakfast after the gym. Okay. And it was fascinating to sit down and it's different now that I actually know Ben, right? I remember very vividly having conversations with him in front of the booth, and it doesn't much matter. But I went down that path and had brilliant results with the product, right? This is really, I think, the pinnacle of what I call a legal or appropriate or white hat nootropic product, right?
Bridging gaps in product and principles. (01:20:18)
If you're looking for more cognitive function, alertness, energy in a very clear, crisp, and I'll call it linear way, right? You're not riding this bell curve of a caffeine or, you know, gosh, any number of other variable products that could be in any of these stimulant-based hyper-energy items. It just was so fascinating to see how impactful it was. And then your guys' commitment to excellence has had you reformulate the product, come up with a single bottle solution, and then you almost call it the vertical integration, right? You have the parent product, but I think there's two or three additional products that are- Like children. Yeah. Iterations that fill different needs. Yeah. So the issue with the original two-step that you took and that I still periodically take is that we had a lot of people that would forget to take the second part. So we would, you know, periodically people would call and like, can I just get another bottle of step one? Right. And so it just caused us at the time, and this was before I was involved, but not like I was there really at the tail end of it. like I was there really at the tail end of it, was we need to figure out a way to duplicate, at least for a lot of people, that same subjective response, but make it simpler. So that took quite a bit of iteration. The other thing is there's a few things that were in the original two-step that would be, from the FDA's perspective, probably not be considered dietary supplements. They're sold. You can buy them on Amazon, like Nupept, we talked about earlier, right? Great molecules. Some people, super responders to it, but it's definitely not a dietary supplement. It's not a drug. It's kind of in this gray area that like, you know, sold as a dietary supplement, but you could get warning letters if the FDA chose so the goal was to remove those things from this iteration put it in one one bottle instead of two and so in our testing it took a few iterations so when we finally stumbled on this plant celestris that I mentioned it's our your Vedic medicine and it's the name the Ayurvedic name translates as memory tree. And there's not a lot of it. And Mind is the qualia product that really became the replacement for two-step qualia Mind. But it duplicates some of the same pathway effects mechanisms as racetams. Not that strong, but at least enough that when added in the context of the core stack, that actually was the trigger to make it so that we felt good about having a one-bottle product versus the two. So there was a few other tweaks too, but that was one of the more important ones. And I think at the time, we might have been the first one that had that ingredient. I know in terms of sourcing it, we literally had to convince an ingredient supplier to source that for the first time. Wow, that's incredible. It's incredible to see.
Role Relating, Individual Beliefs And Confidence Level
Good role models (01:23:09)
And then you also have this brilliance, too, as far as content creation goes, right? And that's, I was sharing with you, you put out a Christmas list, right, in the Neurohacker Collective. Because admittedly, at that point, I wasn't drawing the correlational difference between Neurohacker Collective and Qualia, right. It was, where did I sign up for this email list of Neurohacker Collective? And I'm getting served ads for Qualia. But the quality of content that Neurohacker Collective puts out, second to none, I would look at it as top two or top three, certainly, as far as if you're interested in, I'll call it life optimization, body optimization, health optimization, right? If you want to live a more holistically fulfilled life and be on cutting edge, the cutting edge of everything, you guys have some of the best resources that I've found. And that's not because you're sitting in the office, right? I literally bought everything on your Christmas, like the top 10 or top 12 biohacking tools, right? Everything from the piece that goes on your head with the light and the stuff for your ears and the aura and the, like, that was my Christmas list. Like I just, I want all this stuff. You play an integral role in the content creation too, right? Yeah. So I, um, I was the editor, associate editor, eventually editor for an alternative medical journal, like indexed on Medline PubMed for, I think it started in 96 and finally closed around 2012. So that idea of many hats, so one of my hats is I function as a writer and editor. And so I would say right now, we shoot for one piece a week in terms of like a blog content. We're doing two Insta Live events a month every other Tuesday. We've done a few Facebook Lives. We do a podcast where I think we do one a month is our rate. We're doing some whiteboard videos. Yeah. Oh, yeah. So I write the scripts and like I'm the voice for those. That's a new thing that we're getting into. So yeah, what I think of is how we think of ourselves. Our identity is that we want to advance the conversation. So way before products, the way it would be described at Neurohacker is we don't want to put more noise out in the world. There's enough noise. If we can't do something and do a really good job on it and there there's someone that's done that better already, like, let's just point to them. Yeah. Right. So anything we do, we're trying, at least within the resources we have, to do as good a job as we can. So we don't, you know, try to do a daily piece of content, but we try, like, we get, we've been having Mansell Denton, one of the founders of Nututropedia, write a series of articles over the last two months. So he's done a great job. I've helped create, I guess, some of the outlines. I helped edit it. But he's obviously a very talented writer. And then so it advanced the conversation, not put noise out into the world. We also try to shine a light on what's working, right? What we're hearing from other biohackers, right? Because we go to a lot of conferences, you know, we'll hear about things that maybe some of our audience won't. So we try to distill down what we're hearing is kind of the best of the best. So like, we're huge fans of Aura. Obviously, you're wearing an Aura ring, great technology, right? So we've got way more people that actually are part of our community. On Facebook, I think we've got 100,000 followers, roughly. But I want to say I've heard that maybe 6,000, 7,000 of them actually buy our supplements, right? They follow us just because we are doing something that they're appreciating. So we want to make sure we continue to service them as well as the people that buy products. The products, in a sense, keep us afloat, right? The real goal was making the world a better place. Certainly. And so as the listeners are consumed with everything we've shared, how do they track down Neurohacker Collective?
NeuroHacker websites (01:27:01)
Right? I know it's neurohackercollective.com. And it's just neurohacker.com. Neurohacker.com. Yep. Even better. Social media handles. What are those? I'm not great at that because that would be Ben's. But I know from our neurohacker.com, you can link to Facebook, Instagram, all the social media. And we, like Ben Ben particularly does a great job responding to things that come in in terms of you know questions on social media and when he can't they come to me which fortunately isn't very often like then Ben does a great job excellent so and then the podcast right or this office of the platform we're on if someone wants to go research the podcast what's that yeah I mean you can get to our from our website but it's some collective insight is the name of the podcast. Um, we've actually had a, like our most popular ones to date have actually all been on gut health or gut microbiome, um, including, um, what's his name? I'm drawing a blank on his name, but he, um, restore is the product that he created. I take it every day. Yeah. So he's been a great guest. I just, like I said, Heather Sandison, a naturopathic doctor, is our routine host. But she delivered a baby, so she'd been on sabbatical. So I filled in. So the one that just launched was me interviewing Greg Potter about circadian rhythms, sleep, things like that. So it's, you know, it's a great podcast. There's obviously lots of great podcasts. And what you'll see is the pool of guests are often the really great guests are on a lot of these good podcasts.
Gregs MVP (01:28:31)
Of course. Of course. Greg, I'd like you to, if you could, share one final thing, either something we didn't talk about on the show or something that would be impactful for the listeners to adopt and live their life by. If I would ask you what that one thing could be, what would your answer be? So for me, I'm a huge fan of the idea of mental models. Like I heard of it from Shane Parrish, which is fs.blog.com or something. But like our stories, for lack of a better word, are either like a huge boon or a big limitation. but our stories, for lack of a better word, are either a huge boon or a big limitation. And one of the stories that I personally have, I think of just in a big picture sense, is trust my body. I don't always agree with what my body will choose for food. I don't always feel like it's doing what I would have wanted it to do. But I trust in the big picture sense, it knows better than me what it needs and how to do what I need it to do. So what I try to do, like I figure my role is not to assume it knows what I want, but to make sure I clearly communicate it to it. So going back to Finding Nemo, which was a 2003 movie, the scene where Marlon is the dad that is trying to find his son Nemo, and he encounters a bunch of sea turtles. They're in the stream, right? And says something like, how old are you to this one sea turtle? And the sea turtle, the name is Crush, believe it or not. I actually know this stuff. But Crush says something like 150, dude, and still young. So ever since then, my mental conversation is like, I'm going to be 120. Body, that's our target. So I don't know how to get there, but I'm going to trust that you do. So you help me. When you know you need sleep or something I'm not getting, somehow let me know. Right? So like when I say I'm an intuitive eater, I'm an intuitive eater in the context of that's the goal. Now, Asprey's goal is way more optimistic than mine. That's fine, right? But that's been my target since then. The same, if I'm going to fly from California to Spain, which I go to, I was in Portugal this last August, I go to Europe usually once a year. And my body's done it enough, I figure it knows how to do it, right? So my role is just, like, this is my belief, right? So certainly people don't need to buy in. But I need, just because I booked a flight, I shouldn't assume that it knows I'm going to fly, right? So a couple days before, I'll literally have a conversation with myself. Oh, by the way, body, you know, three days from now, we're going to get on a flight from San Diego to southern Spain. You've done that a bunch of times. I'm going to trust that you know what you need to hit the ground running. You let me know, somehow make it obvious what I need to help you. But otherwise I'm gonna trust that you know what to do better than I know what to do. So, you know, and then if I get there and I'm craving more coffee, like, that's on the menu. So anyways, that idea, trust my body, what I routinely encountered in practice, you know, many times through, you idea, trust my body, what I routinely encountered in practice, you know, many times through, you know, cousins, relatives, friends, etc.
Trusting your body and the power of belief (01:31:43)
Is almost the idea like my body's let me down, it's abandoned me. Like something broke and I can't understand it. And the thing I used to tell my students at the beginning of the doctor-patient relationship class I taught, which was I think only two semesters, but was to think in simple terms. When a patient comes in the door, what they're really saying is, Dr. Gregg, I have this thing going on my body. I don't really know what it is. And frankly, it scares me a bit. Can you tell me a better story? Right? So that was my goal for my students. Like your job, if you do nothing else, like it's not about fixing them. It's listening to the story and somehow having them leave with a better one. And for me, the most empowering one would be that idea of trusting my body. So then epigenetics are something that would mean. We're turning that stuff on and off all the time based on our conversations, right? Yeah. I love that. Right. It's fascinating that that's the final point that you bring up, right? Because this podcast, my coaching, what I do, what I offer, so much of it is really based around rewiring your mental hardware, right? The belief systems and patterns we adopted when we didn't know we could adopt things. The stories we tell ourselves consistently about limiting beliefs and what those mean, how to reframe and rewire those, and then really getting into the study of epigenetics and how we're treating our body from our mental capacity, I'll call it down or in, you know, and then even getting into, you know, Wayne Dyer principles, right? Like spiritual beings living a human experience versus a human body living a spiritual experience, right? It's the perception in which we create our own reality. Yeah, I mean, we, I just think, I was a big fan of NLP. Yeah, a huge fan. I've never actually taken it, but I read all the books and self-taught myself and taught others at one point, at least my version of it. But one of the things I found is if I was to do NLP on, say, someone with a migraine, like I had a few patients that anaphylaxis with NLP went away, that, you know, migraines have gone away, and phobias of snakes, standing, speaking in public, things like that. They're, frankly, fairly easy. Food allergies are way tougher with NLP. Like, vague things are hard. Like, concrete things are easy. But one of the things I found is my notions about what might've been causing it and what actually there's, you know, there came up during, you know, the pseudo hypnotic state or whatever you would call it, were completely disparate, right? Like, you know, our histories are these, you know, influx. I don't know that the stories we tell ourselves are anything more than that, right? So quite often the single most powerful thing. And I feel super fortunate.
Optimizing When Possible (01:34:32)
I went to a brand new naturopathic school. So at the time, there was two established ones in the Northwest and one that was just opening in Scottsdale, Arizona. I was living in Hawaii and felt like, geez, I don't know if I could do the Northwest in cold rainy, but I could do the desert, I think, for a couple years. And they didn't have a big pool of talented teachers for us locally, so what they would do is each semester would start off with two weeks of intensives where they would fly people in that were experts in some area, and it would be much more like a conference, right, where you're just going and you're getting downloaded a whole bunch of things in this. And for whatever reason, one of the people that they focused on my first week was this person that came in, he called it conversations, but basically the stories we tell ourselves. And one of the things I remember is in just the first couple days of school, I'd already heard classmates talking about how their relationship wasn't working and how he's changed or she's changed or blah, blah, blah. Like kind of a lame story when you think about it, right? Yeah. And at some point, someone asked him, like, what's your story about your relationship? And it was, I don't remember his exact words, and I'm going to do it a disservice if I tried to say them. But at the time, it struck me it was the single most powerful story about a relationship I'd ever heard. And it just convinced me at the time that I need to be super careful about the stories I told myself. Yeah. Right? And I'm not great at it still, right? I can still tell myself stories that don't serve myself, but I'm much more conscientious about it. So anyways, I would say that's, to me, just a hugely impartive optimization. Certainly. And I mean, this is like a whole nother podcast.
You Should Still Believe in (01:36:08)
It's like version 2.0 for us, but Dr. Joe Dispenza, right? And being limited by what a vision of the past versus being propelled forward by a dream or vision of the future. And that ability to really self-heal, right? In some capacity, like you said, whether it's NLP basis, whether it's this massive belief in higher power, right? If God is your thing, I love you for it, whatever that means to you. It's just so crazy to think of how all these pieces are all floating all around us and we get to pick and choose which ones we want to have serve us at what time. I think I'm a huge fan of Selye, right? Kind of the grandfather of stress. And he was a firm believer that of all, like I think of stress, it's like the metaphor goes back to a game I played when I was a kid. And it was called the camel game.
Society And Confident Aggression
Lastly, Additions Weigh 2 (01:37:01)
You could, I'm sure, find like pictures of it. But basically, it was a little wheel you spun, and there was different colors, and there were straws that matched those colors. And the straws the camel game. You could, I'm sure, find pictures of it. But basically, it was a little wheel you spun, and there was different colors, and there were straws that matched those colors, and the straws were different weights. And you just took turns, whatever that color was, adding that into the basket on either side. And whichever person put the straw in that caused the bank to collapse, like, lost. And to me, that's just a great metaphor for stress, right? Like, we all have this innate ability to carry a lot of straws. At some point, we outpace that, that some straw breaks the back. And that's what we focus on, right? Like I was like great until, you know, the antibiotic, right? But the truth was there was a bunch of things in the basket before that, right? Certainly. And if the basket was less full, maybe the antibiotics would have done something differently. So for me, I'm always in my own life, but when I work with patients, what straws can we remove?
Society Is Sometimes Viewed As Confident Aggression (01:37:47)
What can we do to make the back stronger? That's the game, really, for me, what it boils down to. But Sally was of the belief that by far the heaviest straw was mental emotional yes and what I saw in practice in coaching people is the relationship straw seems to be for most people the weightiest one right if if our primary relationships are issues that soaks up a huge amount of our mental bandwidth and our physical capability to deal with other things. So, you know, quite often, you know, like there's multiple places you can start and almost all roads when you start to remove stressors, like good things tend to happen.
Positivity And Healing, Belief Impact
You Should Still Believe Healing Occurs! (01:38:19)
Of course. But quite often that's the single biggest one to focus on. So NLP is just one of the great toolkits for that. Absolutely. Greg, I couldn't be more thankful to get to spend this afternoon with you. I've absolutely loved our time. And I appreciate you making the time out of your busy schedule to come and share such power with the audience and with me. That's been awesome. Thank you. I mean, I'm relatively new in the podcast guest world. So each one of these is just a huge treat for me. I'm so grateful to be here. It's truly my pleasure. Thanks again. Thank you.