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Paleo Solution – Episode 123
Hey folks, Robb Wolf here. Greg Everett in the house and what is this,
More exciting than episodes 1 through 69.
Got back from Columbus, Ohio late Sunday night. I had a couple very interesting plan rides and interesting people on the plane to put it that
way. So that was the national championships and the Olympic trials for women, weight lifting. Congratulations to Hol ey Mangold and Sarah
Robles for getting those two Olympic spots.
Yes. So it was pretty wild. Arnold Classic is always quite a show. I’ve never seen more gigantic people in an airport at one time.
I bet the carriers were coming in at that time, they’re like, “Okay, we’re
real y going to take it on the shorts, on the fuel on the legs coming in and out of this gig. They’re al wel -bony in size.
I saw the biggest calves in my life that day and they were definitely
It was pretty incredible. Also the most vascular calves I’ve ever seen.
So that was my weekend. How was your top secret military gig weekend?
Yeah. Did the gig for Naval Special Warfare and then did the talk in State University of New York New Paltz and we had 500 folks show up for that.
It was super cool. It was pretty amazing. The demographic reminded me of the Ron Paul ral y that I went to. It was a mix, but there were actual y a
mix of races there. There were some older folks, but then there were a bunch of young people, which at a university you wouldn’t be super
surprised by that. It was over 500 people showed for that gig.
It was pretty interesting. I mean where this stuff has come from the absolute lunatic, the fringe seems to be expanding. So it’s kind of cool
and might have some stuff brewing with the EvoS, the Evolutionary Studies Program. Definitely cool stuff, super fun. Glad to be home
though. We are right now seven weeks out form the Wolflet, the Lobito Go Days. So we’re gearing up on that on the PaleoFX next week and then
So that’s my story. That’s al I’ve got.
It looks like Squachy pulled out some goodies today.
Man, it’s definitely like a very incongruent col ection of questions.
Let’s do it, man. Let’s not extend the pain for these folks any longer.
Al the awkward sound is me drinking more coffee so please forgive me. Al right, this first subject line is clean hair and turtles. Abi says, “Okay,
Robb and Greg.” I like that intro. “I have two distinctly separate questions. However, both are related to gluten and its ubiquity. I was
washing my hair, and looked down on my shampoo. To my horror, it is
enriched with wheat to keep locks looking lovely. Horror of horrors, I’m a
gluten-free girl! Is this seeping into my brain and destroying my remaining brain cel s? Should I throw out this fancy organic shampoo?
Second question, while feeding my tortugas,” and for those of you who
are not super wel -versed in other cultures, that’s Spanish for turtles. “I looked down to read the ingredients on their turtle pel ets (the most
popular and mainstream brand for water turtles.
Again, to my horror, I see that the primary ingredients include wheat starch and wheat gluten as wel as a few artificial colorings too, I assume,
give them that nice swampy green color. While I understand that humans have had a very short time to adapt to grains and respond to the
agricultural trend, I am guessing that there aren’t too many farming water turtles. What is a Paleo alternative to this commericial feed?
As you can surmise, I can neither wash my hair nor feed my turtles until
these questions are answered. I await your response.”
Man, she’s going to have some hungry turtles and some stinky hair.
Yeah, I just hope that this made it through the triage quickly. Otherwise, we’ve got dreadlocks and turtle soup on our hands. It’s interesting; there
was just a pretty good news piece on gluten content of different cosmetic products. It’s definitely a problem for folks. It’s not related to it like
seeping through the pores, but when you’re showering you’re going to get as much as you try to keep your mouth closed and al that sort of
stuff, you’re going to at least directly, you probably do.
I do, so that you
won’t drown in there.
For al you mouth breathers out there, this could be a real problem.
Yeah. You’re going to get some kind of shampoo residue that makes its
way into your nose and your mouth and then obviously down the pie hole and that can definitely be a problem. So I think it’s worth it kind of
checking out your shampoo and everything and making sure that it is not enriched with gluten or glutinous containing items especial y if you know
that you’re pretty reactive to it. With the turtles, I honestly don’t know.
There are some critters that are autoimmune reactive than some critters are. I was talking to Matt Leland and he was talking to Alessio Fasano and
like chimps and goril as do not produce autoimmunity. So they don’t seem to have the GI responses that we do. Although I’m not sure if that
holds true, that’s just a general statement. I stil don’t know if they end
up with GI problems because of, say like, eating grains and stuff like that.
It’s just interesting. I know for a fact that you can have feline and canine sprue from feeding your cats and dogs a gluten containing items. There’s
a whole funny story and e-mail thread associated with that and a fitness luminary that someday I’l be able to talk about in his prized pit bull.
It wil be the tel al book, but their dog was dying. I was like, “Dude,
you’re feeding your dog greenies,” which are these dog chew things that, I have to honest, look kind of yummy to nibble on, but the very first
ingredient is gluten. So I know for a fact that gluten-containing items can be problematic in cats and dogs. I have no idea if it could in turtles, but it
wouldn’t be a big stretch that it probably would be.
Al right, we’l have to ask Adrian.
What about like lettuce and other kinds of stuff.
Yeah, that’s what I was kind of thinking.
Probably gave him some rotten lettuce.
So hopefully, Abi, you can wash your hair now and find something else to feed your turtles.
Al right, next question. “Fel as, I’m assuming you’ve been fol owing Jack
Kruse’s cold thermogenesis series lately. Either he’s gone off the deep end or found the next frontier in the ancestral health movement.
Namely, he insists cold adaptation is not merely beneficial, but
imperative. Coupled with a circadian (daily and yearly) pattern of eating
and a heavy emphasis on a ketogenic style of paleo almost al of the time. Care to weigh in? Thanks.”
Yeah. I mean, I think I’m not that far off of where Jack is coming from. I
see some benefit to cyclic ketogenic eating. I see some benefit to eating with the seasons, having a little bit of an eye directed towards seasonality
and locality. I don’t think there’s any doubt the different hormetic stressors, both cold and heat can definitely be beneficial.
I think Jack’s way more emphatic about it than I am. I’d think that there’s
a variety of stressors both heat and cold that could be highly beneficial. Whether or not you should be on a ketogenic diet al the time, I think is a
little bit subject to your activity level and stuff like that. I know for me, doing jujitsu three or four times a week, there’s absolutely no way I could
support the activity level and be ketogenic just because the sport, at least where I’m at in the sport right now because I’m very much on the
beginner side. So it’s a very metabolic glycolytical y demanding activity for me. If I go after that just purely ketogenic, I’m going to get crushed.
We’ve talked about this stuff a lot with like the hormesis. It’s kind of
funny, I was thumbing through the performance menu archives and like I wrote huge deal --
Yeah, never heard of it -- ton of stuff on hormesis, when you should and
shouldn’t do intermittent fasting. It’s kind of funny, I’ve kind of forgot about that stuff. So we should start linking some of that into the show
notes because they’re real y solid articles and I think it’s cool and that this stuff was written several years ago. So I was actual y somewhat timely in
The interesting thing, and this is kind of a side note, I see this real y nasty divisive kind of scene growing up within the paleo sphere, whatever the
hel you want to cal it, and you have some folks that are real y strict adherence to this ketogenic approach. You have people that are like
pushing this safe starch kind of gig. It is intriguing me. Here is one side of this. It’s intriguing to me that a lot of the clinicians, the people who are
actual y dealing with patients on a day to day basis, although I wouldn’t put Chris Kresser in this. He kind of straddles this thing. He deals with a
ton of people, but he’s also cognizant that ketogenic approach isn’t a one-size-fits-al for everybody.
It’s interesting; a lot of people who are in this kind of practitioner role
have a huge benefit for low carb paleo intervention. Then you have a lot of other folks that are kind of out of this academic scene. They don’t
actual y work with people, they don’t actual y help people on the day to day basis, they spend a ton time kind of pontificating on the internet and
stuff like that. They kind of spin out on al these tiny minutia detail kind of things about what’s optimum and what’s not. They’re not actual y doing
anything on a day to day basis to work with or help people. This thing has grown into this real y nasty kind of scene.
It’s a bummer for me because up until pretty recently, I think that we’ve
been able to navigate stuff with a certain amount of humility and mutual respect, and I see that stuff just disappearing. It’s definitely too bad in my
book and where I’m at with it. I’m just at the point where I just want to circle my own wagons, have my own blog, hang out with Chris Kresser,
and hang out with Mark Sison. Hang out with people that I respect and enjoy their company, and everybody else can kind of GFY.
So there are a lot of people out there that are getting real y nasty about
this topic and I would just caution folks to not do it. It’s not real y doing anybody who needs help any good. There are mil ions of people that
need to hear some sort of a moderate measured message in order to save their life. I think that should be the primary goal. Should we talk
about the nuances of this stuff and figure out best practices? Absolutely, but not at the expense of kicking each other in the bal s. I see a lot of that
So that’s just kind of an aside. Like Jack has been pretty viciously attacked in al those stuff. Some of what he’s putting forward controversial. Is the
way that he’s doing it kind of wacky? Yeah, but you don’t need to publicly assassinate the guy. I’ve seen that go down from other people, fitness
luminaries, and it’s just ugly worthless stuff.
So that’s completely an aside, but I would just encourage people to try to maintain a little bit of respect and decorum about this stuff and not just
go for the jugular. Especial y if you’re parading around the internet with a pseudo name, people don’t even know who you are, sack up. Have a real
name, put your thoughts out there the same way that you would if you were talking to somebody across the table and say the same things to
people that you would if they could reach across the table and punch you in the face. So have a little respect with this stuff.
It’s real y funny you brought that up because I’m putting together
something right now that wil be out soon. Part of it was an article I wrote
a long time ago about that exact thing on how just this horrible internet
environment, where everybody has just become a complete asshole because there are no consequences to saying whatever you want to say.
It’s real y exhausting and it’s real y unfortunate because there’s so much good information out there. There are so many smart people who want
to help and unfortunately a lot of their time gets wasted arguing with a bunch of morons who haven’t contributed anything to anyone. Basical y
hang on the coat tails of others and drag them down.
This stuff is largely down, in my opinion, a lot of these happen and it doesn’t matter if it’s like Olympic lifting or strength and conditioning or
nutrition, whatever it is. This is often times an attempt to carve out your own little nugget of market share whether you’re sel ing shit or not.
Instead of trying to find the commonality and then rational y discussing the differences between two situations, then it becomes this us versus
Before Mark and I became better friends even than what we are now, we’re just kind of acquaintances. We hadn’t hung out significantly. Folks
were always trying to stir up some sort of like Robb Wolf versus Mark Sison kind of controversy. I’m like, “Dude, the guy is saying 99% the same
stuff that I am. What’s the issue here? Why does there need to be some sort of conflict here?”
Mark drives the boat a little bit more towards dairy. I tend not to, or at
least not until after a 30 day period. Is that real y justification for me to shit talk this guy who’s a great human being and has taught me a lot of
stuff, just so that I can try to have some sense that I’ve carved out some sort of market share that’s different than him? It’s so annoying and I
don’t even know if talking about this stuff is going to help because the people that toe the line already do it, then the people who want to be
The people who want to see blood just want to see blood.
Yeah. This is some of my stuff. Like I just kind of had my testicles kicked in because I had a little political quip in my post on paleo diet inflammation
and metformin which I ended pul ing down so I don’t completely piss everybody off.
For me, with al these nutrition and ancestral health stuff and everything,
al that I want to do is get to a point where I am obsolete. My goal with al these stuff is honestly, and this maybe sounds nuts, is to be obsolete. It’s
to be like, “Oh, okay. I go farm coconuts now.” Because al I want to do is
get this idea out there so that it’s a viable alternative. I’m not saying
everybody needs to do it. God forbid people do something that saves their life. I mean, I just want them to have the options.
So that the person who’s sick, the person who’s kid has horrible
gastrointestinal problems and maybe developmental issues, the person who has multiple sclerosis and they’re 28 years old and they think they’re
going to die. They have an alternative besides vegan of pharmaceutical because neither of those work. I have this inkling that this stuff does
work. So within that, what we need is some sort of a cohesive simple message that gets the idea across to people, gets them bought in so that
To me, that seems like a real y important endeavor, but there’s a bunch of other people that whether it’s cocksureness and a lot of it is this
anonymity on the internet. There are a lot of websites that al ow this anonymity to go on and to just embroil people in this drama, but they
don’t give a fuck about helping people. Al that they want to do is stir shit on the internet and just spin out about picayunish details that real y don’t
matter at the end of the day. If we’re trying to help somebody with type II diabetes or type I diabetes or multiple sclerosis or autism or whatever it
is, it’s not helping people. The spinning out and the gnashing of teeth is not helping people.
The fact that people are motivated to keep doing that stuff is real y kind
of an insight into the culture that’s developing in some regions of the interwebs. Again, I total y spun out on this thing. I didn’t even think I was
going to talk about this stuff. I would just encourage people to give a little bit more thought about what the big goal is here. The big goal, at least in
my mind, is to help a lot of people to change food policy, to stem the tide of things like farm subsidies that are just wasting bil ions of dol ars and
bot producing good food. These things are real y important, and they’re going to matter for us and for our kids and our grandkids and for the
So quit being pricks and just try to get along a little bit. Where we need to have some discussion and debate, do it, but just try to be respectful and
try not to drag this thing down to the lowest common denominator. If you do want to do that, then by God post al the stuff with a real address
so that you can be accountable down the road.
Yeah, it’s interesting. On our forum, we’ve always made people use their real ful names rather than some anonymous user name. More and more
over the last couple of years, we get request from people like, “Hey, I’m
trying to get a new job. Can you please delete my account? I don’t want
my employer searching my name.” It’s like, “Wel , what did you post on there that is going to prevent you from getting a job? If you’re on there
which is what you should be doing, offering or receiving, training in nutrition advice, how would that possibly affect your employment
status?” It just absolutely baffles me. Like what are you getting up to?
For the most part, I think it real y keeps people in check. So we’ve had that forum for what? Five or six year and it’s been general y very wel
behaved. It requires very little moderation. I think that’s a huge part of it is people actual y are putting their names behind what they’re saying.
Surprisingly enough, they’re not as wil ing to run their mouths.
Yeah. That was a big spin out tangential piece. I wasn’t anticipating that at al . I think Jack’s got some important stuff to say. Is he 100% right? I
don’t know. Is the delivery method maybe a little bit wacky or different? Yeah, it is, but you don’t have to crucify the dude for that. He’s trying to
help people and he’s demonstrated that he’s helped a lot of people. So let’s take what he’s saying and analyze it. Experiment with it and see
whether or not it’s accurate or not. Leave the personal attacks for something else. Find the biggest dude in the barn and pick on him. See
Al right. Wel , on to more important topics such as the deadlift. Ben in Brooklyn says, “Hey guys, your podcast continues to be the single best
source of nutrition and athletic information, light-hearted and educational. I have a basic question about the deadlift.
When we do pul -ups we are to keep our shoulders pinched together. I
believe this is to keep the shoulders in something akin to external rotation, engaging al the musculature, and taking some of the pressure
off of the joints. I understand and practice this.
My question is should we be doing the same when we set up to deadlift. On Robertson Training System’s site I have heard that you should be
“putting your shoulders into your back pockets” which does indeed sound to me like what we do when we do our pull-ups: kind of locking
the shoulders back, engaging more musculature. However, over at EliteFTS, I have heard Dave Tate say explicitly the opposite. He has said
you should let the shoulders drape completely forward, letting al the
musculature completely lose, then grab the bar and initiate the pull. The
two seem quite different. Seeing as a large portion of your audience is either crossfitting or doing some kind of deadlifting I thought it’d be a
good, short topic to broach. Thanks as always!”
Do you want to take a crack at this first?
Sure. Where do I start? Wel , here’s the thing with deadlifting. I get this question al the time because people, I think, get a little bit confused
between deadlifting for deadlifting sake and deadlifting for improving the Olympic lifts. They are very different things. So number one thing you
should be asking with every single exercise and workout and program you do is, “What is your goal? What are you trying to accomplish?”
Now, if your goal with doing a deadlift is to lift as much weight as you
possibly can, then you’re more than likely going to approach it differently than if your goal with the deadlift is to produce some very specific trait.
For example, if you’re giving a clean deadlift, your primary goal is to
strengthen the clean pulling posture which is going to be different than a max effort deadlift.
So with regard to the shoulders, general y, I would end up more towards
the side of Mike Roberston. The quote is putting your shoulders into your back pockets, which I’ve never heard that cue before, but I kind of like it.
So basical y, I don’t think you should be trying to ful y retract your shoulder blades. Number one, because you won’t be able to. You’l never
be able to maintain that unless the weight is real y light. Also for most people, if you fully retract your shoulder blades, you simply won’t be able
to reach the bar. It’s going to just pull your arms too far back, but that being said, I do think it’s real y important to very fully completely arch
Part of that effort is to real y engage the lats which help reinforce that upper back arch in particular also help push your arms back, which is
going to keep bar ring close to you. Natural y, you’re going to depress your shoulder blades when you do that. So that scapular depression is
going to feel a little bit like retraction and you’l get some retraction. I feel like you should be just fairly neutral with regard to protraction and
Presumably what Dave Tate is suggesting is in the context of absolute
max effort power lifting deadlift. In which case, again like I said, your only goal is to pick up as much weight as possible. You’re not real y concerned
with how it affects the body with regards to development.
So in that case, if you fully retract the shoulder blades, basical y what you’re doing is al owing your body to start higher up above the ground so
your joint angles are better and therefore it’s easier to lift the bar. Also when you’re deadlifting 800 plus pounds, you’re not going to be able
maintain scapular retraction. There’s just no way.
So I think that’s a big part of it. Again, I think it’s not real y that these guys don’t agree with each other. It’s more that they just have different goals.
Robertson is much more of a kind of sports performance and corrective exercise sort of guy. So he’s looking at this thing in a very different way
than I would assume Dave Tate is. Robb, thoughts.
Yeah. I completely agree. Just to clarify, you mentioned that you would have a better position with the scapula retracted, but I think it’s more
somewhat relaxed, like not retracted.
Yeah, for the hips to be a little higher.
Yeah, if I said retracted, I didn’t mean that. I mean, if your shoulder blades are protracted, you’re basical y making your arms longer.
Right. I just wanted to clarify that so that people don’t get confused on
that. Yeah, for that max effort, it would be nice if you could start the deadlift from the weight in a rack at knee height or above knee height.
That’s kind of the thing that you’re thinking about here when you start considering max effort type stuff. Like you just want to optimize every
You want to think about that combined center of mass being as much behind the bar versus in front of the bar. Which obviously when the bar
starts getting heavier, then that’s going to be difficult to do, but you want to think about that stuff a lot.
That’s a lot of what goes into this elite level performance. Like for me,
where I’m at in my strength and conditioning career as it were. I don’t even real y deadlift any more. I do clean poles and I do snatch grip
Romanian deadlifts from real y wide grip off of a block. I do some relative
because the main thing I’m trying to do is do some jujitsu and remain just
kind of explosive. I find that a fast deadlift or a good power clean plus some real y dedicated hamstring and spinal erector work that I get out of
a snatch grip deadlift from a deficit going off of a block. That’s just amazing for me. I real y noticed benefit in everything else that I do. It’s
simple and it doesn’t seem to schlack me, but at this point I just can’t find an argument for why I would need to do a max effort dead lift at al .
This has been an interesting evolution because coming from being a
complete meat head power lifting background, it’s been hard to let go of that. When I look at what I got developmental y versus taking stuff out of
the tank, like the regular deadlift just wasn’t doing anything for me whereas this other stuff is. So it is real y, real y important to think about
the context of what you’re up to and what you’re trying to do. I think Greg’s point about Robertson and Tate coming at this very different
perspective is not that one is necessarily right or wrong. It’s just how do you want to drive the boat and what are you trying to do?
Al right. Here’s another question that has two entirely unrelated
questions, which is the subject line. PaleoGeek says, “ Hey Robb, I have two questions for you that have nothing to do with each other, but which
I’ve been wondering about for a while now.
First, my wife is pregnant. She and many other pregnant women we know had an early aversion to meat. The first few months of pregnancy,
they real y just have no taste for meat. This is especial y weird for my wife, who is normal y a total carnivore. We have a friend who suggested
that this might have been an adaptation to protect the fetus from the risks of meat-borne il ness, but I’m not sure I buy that. Do you have any
Second, I’ve been thinking about supplementing with Now Foods Super Enzymes. I’ve been curious, though, about how that would help my body
learn to produce its own stomach acid. It seems like most of the time when you supplement with something your body should be making on its
own, your body slacks off and stops producing even the insufficient amount it was before. What’s the difference here? Am I just total y
wrong? How do you know when your body has started to take over for the pil s, and you can start ramping down on them?
I real y appreciate your help on this, and al the help you’ve already given
me. The paleo lifestyle has revolutionized everything for me. I’ve lost 40 pounds, 5 inches off my waist and al of my digestive problems in the 4
months I’ve been doing this. I’ve been spreading the word and have over
a dozen friends and family members on board who are al experiencing
Thanks. Cool. On the pregnancy thing, I can recommend Chris Kresser’s healthy baby code. We’ve got links to it off the front page. That thing is
just phenomenal whether you’re looking to get pregnant, currently pregnant, going to be breastfeeding and raising the little one. Like that
The theory on the meat-borne il ness, I would put a negative on that. I don’t real y think that’s an issue. For pregnant women, they definitely do
not want too little protein because it real y increases the likelihood of pre-eclampsia and some other pretty, pretty nasty problems. You don’t
necessarily want too much protein either because liver function as it relates to processing protein is kind of compromised during pregnancy.
So you want to be moderate in protein and I think by and large just kind
of letting moms go by what they’re appetite dictates, I think they’re total y good to go. Nicki has not had any food aversions at al real y. Like
she had two days of morning sickness and they were both immediately fol owing a cross country plane trip. So we think that were was actual y
some kind of altitude change that happened with that because we never had problems otherwise.
There are some pretty significant aversions to vegetables, which I would
actual y put that in the kind of toxicant category. Where woven into the DNA, there is some understanding that cruciferous vegetables are
different things. Could have some sort of toxin load that normal y isn’t a problem. Maybe even as therapeutic, but then with the fetus it could be
a problem. So I think that that’s where you get some of the aversions to vegetable matter.
The Now Food Super Enzymes, as it was explained to me. Like Pol ican is
one of the people that made this make sense for me. A lot of the problem with the digestive fire is that you’re zinc deficient. If you have low
hydrochloric acid production, you’re tending to not ionizing these organic molecules, these organic acids which tend to bind up these metal ions. It
doesn’t make them available to be absorbed later in the digestive process.
So you need to kind of disassociate these things and make them a little
bit more available. So the Now Food Super Enzymes are something similar. I’ve actual y been getting real y good results with these Solaray
brand of betaine hydrochloride. It real y seems to get kind of that
stomach acid production response. I use that with some basic digestive
Now Food Stuff, I’ve real y liked for a long time, but they seem real y variable and their quality of late. So the Solaray stuff seems pretty solid.
Let’s say you first start using this stuff and you need to take five betaine
hydrochloride capsules before you start feeling warmth with the meal, then eventual y that starts becoming uncomfortable. So you drop it down
to four with a meal, and then three, and then two, and then one. What I find is I just need to cycle on and off the stuff occasional y. Like I’l use
them and my digestion wil get pretty solid, and then if I’ve got a lot of travel. If I get some gluten exposure while traveling or something like
that, then I need to go back on and prop up the digestion a little bit.
I think the reason why we’re not down regulating stomach acid production with this is we’re actual y supplying a bunch of the subtrates
that we’re having problems absorbing that are important in hydrochloric acid production. As you start producing more of your own stomach acid,
then you’re able to dial this stuff down. It’s definitely a good question. Honestly, I’ve talked to Matt Leland on this stuff and the chemistry of
why the betaine hydrochloride works is a little bit dubious, but it does seem to work. It definitely seems to improve digestive quality for folks.
Cool. Okay, this one is kind of awkward. Subject line is: Cattle Injections
(hot beef injection??) and then the guy’s user name is meathawk. I wonder if he’s related to Lincoln Hawk from over the top.
Al right, “Robb and Greg, I love the show. I’ve listened to every episode
twice (insert joke about me being a loser here).” That doesn’t make you a looser that just makes you real y dedicated.
Possibly skinny on the social life, but that’s not necessarily a terrible
Yeah. “If I could marry the podcast, I would. If the democrats get their way, perhaps I’l be able to, just kidding. I support the right of al people
to get married.” Getting a little warm in here.
“Very interesting and relevant information about my political views aside, I have a question about standard grocery store grain fed cattle. We al
know by now grass fed is way better, but what if we’re poor or just too lazy to find it? More specifical y, what’s the deal with injecting cattle with
stuff? They get growth hormone and antibiotics, right? Anything else you
know of? What, if any, effect might said cow meat have the lazy and/or
poor and/or uninformed individual who consumes it?
In al seriousness, I believe what you do with this podcast is making the world a better place. I like being a smartass, but I also want to genuinely
P.S. I’d be happy to pay for the podcast and I bet many others would too. You should at least have one of those “donate” buttons like Jimmy Moore
has. If not that, I would definitely support paleo in a religious and/or cult format, even though you seem to think that’s a bad idea.”
You know what you need to have? You need to have paleo summer
camp. So it could be a cult, but only for two to three months at a time.
Then people just have to get over it during the rest of the year.
Yeah. You guys could write letters to each other and stuff and send each other friendships bracelets and whatever.
Absolutely not. So injected beef, the antibiotics are definitely an issue. I
think the biggest issue real y with the antibiotics, the culmination of antibiotics plus grain feeding cattle. Interesting, we were just talking
about high stomach acid. Hopefully everybody realizes, and Chris Kresser has done a number of pieces on this talking about GERD,
gastroesophageal reflux disease and what not, kind of autoimmune underpinnings.
It’s grains largely that are causing this problem, metabolic derangement
to some degree too, but you end up with high acid content when you eat the grains whether you’re a cow or a human. For cattle, if you have a high
stomach acid content, then you’re selectively breeding bacteria particularly these E. coli bacteria to be able to survive a high acid
Normal y, our stomach acid would be sufficient to kil most bacteria unless they are basical y selectively bred to survive high acid
environments. So that’s a piece that’s nasty. Then if cattle are constantly
exposed to antibiotics, which they need to be exposed to antibiotics
because the type of ulcerative colitis type stuff that they get from eating grains kil s them. So they need constant antibiotic application to be able
to keep them alive long enough to be able to grow them big enough to slaughter them then. That combination creates not only acid resistant
bacteria, but also antibiotic resistant bacteria.
If you get some sort of E. coli 0152 or whatever it is, these real y nasty varieties of E. coli, if they end up getting one of these gene fragments
that makes them very, very toxic. You’ve got an acid resistant variety, which means that if it gets in your lettuce or your hamburger, whatever it
is, then it’s going to make it through your gastrointestinal tract intact. It’s going to make it through the stomach intact, then it’s going to be
resistant to antibiotics, which you don’t real y use antibiotics a ton on E, coli, but that aside. Then it’s also very, very dangerous because it’s got
this adaptation to be particularly toxic and potential y even lethal.
So that’s the real y big stuff, the real y big problem that I see mainly with cattle is the green feeding, the antibiotic stuff and then producing even
nastier varieties of bacteria, that whole thing. Eating hormone residue and antibiotic residue, it’s a concern. For me, it’s way more concerning
that we’re buggering the larger environment by the way that we feed cattle and what we feed them, and the need for antibiotic application to
be able to keep them healthy until they can be slaughtered. I think that’s al bigger problems.
Bigger problems, wel said. Al right, these are my favourite kind of
questions. Agave Nectar – paleo or not? Autumn says, “Hi Robb, earlier today, a few people from my gym got into a discussion regarding agave.
I’m sure this is not the first time you’ve discussed the topic of whether or
not agave nectar is paleo, but I am real y hoping to get to the bottom of this. I read that you referred to it as ‘liquid death,’ but then I’ve also seen
it as an ingredient in some of your recipes (Chil ed Chocolate Torte). I real y love your podcast and website. Thanks for being so encouraging
Thank you, Autumn (a fel ow Chico State grad).” Go Chico.
1989 playboy party school of the year.
Yeah, 1987. So yeah, I mean the deal with agave is that it’s mainly fructose. It’s largely fructose and high fructose corn syrup is like 55%,
sucrose is basical y 50% fructose. So as you step up the amount of
fructose, then we’ve got problems with metabolic derangement. We’ve
got problems with intestinal permeability. Fructose has this weird effect on increasing lipopolysaccharide introduction into our system. It’s not
great stuff. When it’s associated with fruit, then it’s maybe not that big of a deal. If you’re overweight and have funky gut bacteria already, then it
So this is one of those things again where it’s fairly subjective, but to the degree that you can minimize fructose intake. I think that that’s a good
thing to do. One thing to keep in mind when you see stuff on the site, I have a lot of people writing for the site. I go back and forth on whether or
not I should have this real y tight totalitarian reign on what people put into their material. There’s often times things that are published that I
don’t agree 100% with, but instead of stifling that. To some degree I like the debate and people asking questions and al that stuff, but just keep in
mind that it’s not always 100% endorsed.
Like in the case of the chocolate torte, if I were making that, I would just use standard like CNH pure cane sugar from Hawai grown in the sun.
That’s good to go, but then the interesting thing with that is that then people wil freak out. This is usual y kind of the paleo newbs. Like, “I
thought sugar was bad.” It’s like, “yes, sugar is bad. This is a treat.” So it’s a little bit of a catch-22 in that you’re constantly circling this wagon
around. It real y feels like groundhog’s day to some degree. We just go around and around this thing as we get new waves of folks.
Sugar is kind of a bad idea to the degree that you can find sugar that has
less fructose in it. That’s probably smart. Granulated dextrose is a pretty good idea, although some of the granulated dextrose comes from gluten
extract. So you got to watch it with that, but hopefully that clarifies fructose and agave.
My fal back is always the best use of agave is to make tequila.
Agave should only be used for tequila, done. Maybe sugar should only be
used to make alcohol. Maybe that’s the solution. There should be no sugar left for baking or confections or sodas. It al has to be booze.
Excel ent. Okay. Tom says, “I seem to remember you saying on your
podcast that you think the acid/base balance stuff is bunk, and that hunter-gatherers probably didn’t measure al their food with a pH
“However, in the frequently asked questions section of your website, you have a link to http://thepaleodiet.com/nutritional-tools/acid-base-
Did I remember this wrongly, or is the website out of date?
Similarly, the website has a bunch of mentions of ‘lean meat,’ but it seems that a lot of the paleo world was moving away from that, and
learning not to fear saturated fats. Could you clarify your stance on lean meat?”
This actual y ties in a little bit with what we’re just talking about with the
new people entering the scene and groundhog’s day and al that sort of stuff. I don’t real y think that the acid/base balance is al that big of a deal
relative to the way it was presented early in this paleo scene where like we were trying to get a net alkalinizing deal from fruits and vegetables
See that’s the funny thing, and always when I read this stuff, they were looking at the urine. I’m like, “Okay, yeah, when you’re peeing, that’s one
part of the acid/base story, but then you’ve got your respiratory factor.” Whether you’re accreting or expel ing bicarbonates, if you pull in more
CO2 then we’ve got a more net acidic environment. If you’re blowing that off, then it’s a more alkalinizing environment. You can displace pounds of
acid load a day with that. Nobody was ever mentioning what the deal was with when we’re talking about net renal acid load. It’s like, “Okay,
the renal element, that’s fine. Then what about the respiratory part of it?” Nobody ever addressed that because that would be real y freaking
So I always had a little bit of a suspicion about this, but this is one of those things that pop up out of the vegetarian camp a ton. Again, this
goes back to the very beginning of the podcast. If you’re getting, let’s say, 100,000 brand new people a month to a website. Like they’ve never
heard of paleo, they’ve never seen any of this stuff. Al that they’ve got is a bunch of questions and bunch of confusion. The usual things that they
get are either USDA or vegetarian because these are just kind of the dominant paradigms that are out there.
Then you need some sort of a reasonable answer to them to be able to
just get them bought in long enough to get going down to road. This is
the difference between the newbie who just needs their live saved versus
the experienced paleo dieter that has the time to think and pontificate on this stuff because they’re not dying anymore.
So this acid/base balance is one of those things where we can say, “Hey,
not a problem. Eat of plenty of fruits and vegetables instead of pasta. Eat yams and sweet potatoes because the net renal acid load is better.”
Which that’s al true, but at the end of the day, it’s not real y al that scientifical y relevant. Because where acid load real y becomes important
is in metabolic acid doses, which is what happens when we get inflamed and start heading down the road to type II diabetes.
That is where we get bone demineralization, where we get sarcopenia
and al the things that are real y problematic. That’s a real y huge mouthful to explain to somebody when they’re first coming on the scene.
They’re like, “Holy Christ. I don’t even know what you’re talking about. I’m done.” This is some of my continual annoyance when we’ve got a
framework that works wel enough to help people. From the scientific side of things, we definitely need to discuss things and be more rigorous
Then at the same time, it’s so easy to disseminate information that it’s easy to then create the firewal that is so complex that then people just
bail and they’re done. That’s where the lean meat part comes in. People in the beginning need to hear lean meat. They just do because if they
don’t, they’re going to freak out. They’re going to be like, “Oh, it’s Atkins,” and they’re gone.
So what this is, is just learning over the course of time to tel people what
they need to hear so that we get them bought in long enough so that their life is transformed. Then we can say, “Oh, by the way, the real story
is this.” Like, “You don’t have to worry so much. You can have bacon with breakfast, and it’s not going to be the end of the world. That’s al cool." If
we lead with that, we’re not going to get any type of buy in. We’re going to peel people out and it’s not going to serve them in the long run.
I think I’ve mentioned this on the podcast before. The way that I wrote
my book -- I don’t know if people notice it, but in the very front part when I talk about blood lipids and what not. I’m squarely in that low
cholesterol American Medical Association HDL LDL numbers. Like that’s what I recommend. Then immediately on the back end of that, I put in
the caveat, “Hey, if you’re C-reactive protein is low, if your vitamin D is high, if the LDL particle size is this, then you don’t have to worry.” Then I
go through several examples of people who have higher than
recommended by the AMA blood cholesterol levels. They’re higher than
what would be recommended, but al these other blood lipid parameters are fine.
So when we look at cardiovascular risk, it’s not a big deal. If just come in
and I say, “Cholesterol doesn’t matter, blah, blah, blah.” Then people are gone again. To some degree, you’ve got to have a story that al ows
people to buy in a step wise fashion. Then when we get them in a little bit further, and they start looking, feeling, performing better when their
biomarkers of health and disease improve, then you can unveil a little bit more of the new ones and have people buy in on this. This has just been
learning how to spin this yarn in such a way that we get maximum buy in, get maximum transformation. Then over the course of time, we can
I was having a talk with Mark Sisson about this stuff. I’m almost at a spot for me where I want to focus on is getting that neophyte brand new
person in the door and save their life. I want to get 20 mil ion people through the door and just transform their life upfront. Because then on
the back end of it, after you’ve been doing this stuff like four months or something like that and you’ve actual y been doing it right, we’re just
It’s not that big a deal. Your life has been saved. You’re probably going to live to be 90 years old. You’re not going to get metabolic derangement.
You’re not going to have an autoimmune disease. You’re going to die from something eventual y, but it’s probably not going to be a standard
westernized disease. Al that I see on that back end, like six months down the road and beyond is just a spinning. It’s just kind of spinning out in
minutia and everything where it’s like of the front end is where al the work needs to happen.
So it’s an interesting thing, but that’s why I stil have the acid/base stuff
on the site. That’s why I stil say lean meat because when you think about the people entering the site, they need to hear these things because they
need to be pacified long enough to be able to buy in enough. To be able to make some progress and it kind of sucks. I’m definitely iconoclastic
about some things, but I’ve just learned over the course of time that you’ve got to tel people what they want to hear long enough to actual y
get them what they want. Even though the route that they used to get there isn’t necessarily the one that they thought it was going to be.
It’s a good question. Hopefully that makes sense and hopes to put al the
Makes perfect sense. You got to trick them into doing what’s good for them.
Al right. Let’s see here. Tony says, “Hi guys, any ideas on this issue?” I
suppose I should have read the subject line, which is Solarium Urticaria, aka Sunlight al ergy. “We al know by now how important vitamin D is,
but if I go into direct sunlight, even at say 10:00 a.m. for one to minutes, my skin becomes red and a little puffy, and my heart rate goes up, and I
begin to get a headache. I currently live not too far from the equator. I’ve had this for over 10 years, I’m 37.
I started supplementing with vitamin D about three years ago; base levels
were 31, and then 51 after 5,000 units per day. Not sure if that’s a factor. I also started taking vitamin A and 1 teaspoon cod liver oil (combined
10,000 units of vitamin A) about a month ago, to no real effect on the sun thing, but I’ve had less acne.
I’ve been paleo for over 5 years, and am in good shape otherwise, not on
any meds, though I was on Accutane for acne, but like 17 years ago.
Thanks hugely, keep up the podcasts! Tony.”
Man, I don’t know. I did a lot of digging around on this. This is basical y a photo reactive type of al ergy. The individual is exposed to some sort of
environmental toxicant, al ergen; however you want to look at it that is not active until you go out in the sun. Then because of some sort of
photo reactive process with your body interacting with the sunlight, you get histamine release and bumps. It can go al the way into a full blown
So it real y runs the spectrum and is definitely something you need to keep an eye on. I did tons of Googling around and pub med searching on
relationships with gluten and I didn’t real y find that much. I looked around autoimmune linkage. I didn’t real y find that much. Then the fact
that Tony is actual y eating wel and has good vitamin D levels, I’m real y kind of stumped on this.
There’s some indication that Accutane can change gut bacteria. We know
that gut bacteria can be a big factor in systemic inflammation and what not, but I’m reaching on that. That’s about al I’ve got on this thing is
real y looking like circling back around and addressing digestive health.
Like getting on a good probiotic, maybe making some of your own
fermented food. That’s al I’ve got man. I feel like I’m kind of failing on you that, but I did not find anything real conclusive on this that was like,
“Okay, yes. We’ve got a gluten linkage.” Even if there was, it seems like you’re already dealing with al that stuff.
So I’m honestly kind of stumped on this.
Yeah, surprisingly enough I don’t have anything better to add. Al right.
Road Work or Road Kil ? Clever Mike. Mike says, “Hey Robb & Greg, love the podcast and never miss it. I am currently an amateur MMA fighter
who has mostly been competing on the BJJ/Grappling circuit (Thank you Bob Reil y for keeping the New York MMA ban alive). I have never been a
fan of long steady-state cardio such as running and have always gravitated towards sprint work, power lifts, and O-lifts.
As such, I have always general y fol owed the Paleo mindset to training of
lifting heavy things and sprinting from time to time. My question is in relation to a recent article by Joel Jamieson of 8 Weeks Out, (link at the
bottom) where he argues that long cardio, commonly known as “road work” does have a place in MMA training. His general premise is that
road work is a tried and true method from Ali al the way to guys like Nick Diaz competing in triathlons. His aim is to incorporate two or three days
of 40-90 minutes of some combination of running, jumping rope, swimming, calisthenics, and more sport specific stuff such as shadow-
Now, obviously my skil work includes the sport specific stuff already, but my question is given your work with guys like Dave and Glen, do you
think there is a place for road work, or wil it just lead to burn out and leave me as road kil ? Thanks for everything!”
Gosh, real y good question. I think that Joel’s piece was real y good. His
main point that I’m kind of pulling out of this is that for ages, the adage out of combatives whether it was regular wrestling or boxing or whatever
was tons and tons of running. People would run themselves until they got kind of flat-footed. They lost the pop in their legs and stuff like that. I
think it was real y Fred Hatfield, Dr. Squat when he trained Evander Holyfield and he got in and he looked at the time index demands of
boxing and it’s potential y ten or twelve three minutes rounds.
So he got in and he did an analysis on Evander Holyfield where he had Evander sprint forward sprint backwards. Basical y do like body weight
sprint and bear crawling type stuff. He had Evander do that for three
minutes and Evander’s heart rate was 280. What had happened, Evander
over the course of 20 years of boxing training had become wickedly efficient at boxing so that that real y wasn’t that much of a stimulus for
For me, it would be a wicked stimulus because I’m not particularly efficient. At some point, you get so efficient that the sport that you’re
doing, that then you need to start doing some peripheral conditioning. This is where you need to figure out where are you on the spectrum.
For me, doing jujitsu, I’m stil inefficient enough that general y my best
efforts are spent putting in enough strength and conditioning and mobility work. According to Joel and a lot of people, I’m probably plenty
strong. Even though I like tweaking that strength side, because I spent a little more time on the strength side and the gymnastic side, it’s going to
probably limit my jujitsu to some degree. I’m kind of okay with that. I like what I’m doing.
So that’s cool, but if I real y wanted to geek out on just the jujitsu, I would
mitigate the amount of strength work I’m doing to get as much sport specific stuff in as I could. Build that skil set to become super efficient
and super technical that then at some point I would probably need to circle back around and add peripheral conditioning. Some of that might
need to be on the longer time indexing. Some of it is going to need to be on the shorter more sports specific time indexing.
So I think Joel’s main point with this, which I think was wel made was
that everybody shifted gears believing that al of the peripheral conditioning work needed to be bal s through the wal , super high
I was rereading my piece that I did for the performance menu, the fight for that piece. That’s what we were doing with Glen way, way back
maybe 2005. It was clear very, very quickly. It only took us about a month and a half that it was clear that crossfit type conditioning had so much
eccentric loading. Had so much systemic demands that Glen was then unable to do adequate levels of sports specific training.
So we had to pull that type of conditioning out. Real y emphasized the
sports specific stuff, and then what we did, we played back and forth with that between time index rounds. Like five minute hard rounds or like 20,
30, 40 minute rounds of stand up, clench, ground where Glen was moving constantly, but it was at a much lower pace. We weren’t real y ever
taking them into the lactate pathway. It was more aerobic interval type
stuff. I think that that’s largely what Joel’s point is with this.
So it’s kind of looking at your athlete, looking at what they’ve got going on and what their needs are. Some anaerobic conditioning is going to be
necessary, but I would stick that more probably when somebody’s got an A level Thai boxing or boxing game, when somebody has a brown belt to
a black belt jujitsu kind of deal. Then they’re probably going to need to circle back around and do some amount of smart anaerobic and aerobic
training to augment that stuff. Because they’ve become so efficient in their game that you need to put them at some sort of a deficit elsewhere
So it’s real y not an either or story. It’s where are you on the developmental spectrum? What are the specific attributes that you need
for your game? Then how do you go about doing that? Within that, the question was is this just going to burn you out or not? I don’t know.
That’s part of what you need to play with.
Ross Enamait has just some phenomenal books, Infinite Intensity and Never Gymless. The Infinite Intensity real y talks about some of his
philosophy about intermixing strength and conditioning and combative. He just makes the point again and again and again.
If you want to be a combative athlete, the lion share of what you do
needs to be spent in combatives. You need to do that stuff and the strength and conditioning needs to be peripheral and supportive. Largely,
what it should do is enhance the attributes that you need improved in the ring and then to injury-proof you, and that’s it. It shouldn’t make
I won’t say it’s hard to do, but you need to be very mindful about how you do it because it’s not bodybuilding, it’s not powerlifting. It’s not
crossfit, it’s smart strength and conditioning to make you a better combatives athlete. You need to real y give some thought to that stuff.
Greg, do you agree with that? Do you have any other thoughts on this?
I definitely agree with that. I think a lot of us definitely got caught up in
the whole brief high intensity kind of conditioning stuff for a while. Everything is new and shinning and exciting for a little bit. So I think
certainly the best point you made there is that it’s real y specific to the individual. I would just add that it’s probably also specific to the time of
the year and where you are relative to your next fight and al that kind of
stuff. That’s going to make a big difference on how much of this kind of
stuff you’re doing versus how much skil work you’re doing versus how much higher intensity work you’re doing.
So there’s a lot of things to consider. I would say, number one, just don’t
discount anything specifical y out of hand without real y knowing what it’s going to do for you. Why and when and where to put it.
Yeah. You could take something like a classic crossfit workout, like a fight
gone back or something like that, three five-minute rounds, five five-minute depending on how you slice it and dice it. Al that you would need
to do to put it more in the parameters of what Joel’s talking about here, in my opinion, is just don’t go so damn hard on it. Just go easier. Make it
aerobic instead of anaerobic and just kind of move through it.
It’s easy to spread that stuff out too. I mean, you dilute it with some mono structural stuff like, as he has listed here, running, jump rope, that
kind of thing. Get on the bike, get on the rower.
It’s easy to real y lengthen that stuff, reduce the intensity and turn it into a more of aerobic thing like you said, but also getting some variety in
there too. So you’re not as concerned about the overuse injuries that you would tend to see with running especial y on the road. Also just in terms
of psychological y, I imagine it gets real y old for people.
Yeah. I mean, when we were talking to Joel about some of that stuff, definitely I think if you’re wired up a little bit more on the sprint power
side of things like going for a 20 minute run or even worse, like sitting on a bicycle or something. Like, “Oh, Lord, just put a bullet in my head.” So
that’s going to be real y hard deal. So I do think that that’s where some interval circuit training type stuff can be real y effective.
You don’t tackle it as, “I’m going to throw my name on the board and I’m
going to set a record on fight gone bad.” You structure it as a conditioning circuit that gives you more than what it takes. So you pul
out some of the eccentric movements. You modify some other stuff, you tackle it a pace that is stimulating, but annihilating. Then you’ve got a
We use this stuff even a little bit harder in intensity. If you have a guy who seem like he just got done with a fight or got done with a grappling
tournament or something and he’s just kind of burned out on being on the mat or being in the ring. So you pull him out of that environment for
maybe three to four weeks. Maybe he just goes in for two days a week of
real easy skil work, but then you want to keep the conditioning up a little
bit. Keep them a little bit feisty and competitive and everything, and then you can do something that looks a lot more crossfit. That’s total y good to
go. Again, I think it’s just being real y clear about where they are in their training block, and what’s the intentionality there. Then just kind of drive
Indeed. I’d say that’s a good one to wrap up on.
Yeah, it’s a good one. We can save the paleo versus repito and a half a gal on of milk for next time.
Half gal on of milk. Was that for babies? There’s ful gal on and it won’t
Yeah, Greg is coming up for a little winding that we’re having here. So it should be a good time. Thanks as always for folks sending in questions
and listening to the podcast. We’re very grateful for the support. Just we’l talk to you al soon.
The Myotonias What is myotonia? Myotonia refers to the condition in which muscles are slow to relax after contracting. It occurs in a number of diseases such as myotonic dystrophy, myotonia congenita and paramyotonia congenita. However myotonic dystrophy is a very distinct condition in which myotonia is only a part. For this reason, and also because it is relatively common, there is a
Name_____________________________________ date_________________________ period_____ Of Fungus and Witches by Viki Babcock • Examine and analyze evidence that explains an historical event • Observe representative examples of Fungi • Identify the distinguishing features of the Kingdom Fungi • Draw conclusions on the historical event Watch Video Clip 1 and answer the questions listed