Iron Overload, Malabsorption, & Autoimmune Issue | Podcast #198


In this video, Dr. Justin Marchegiani answers health questions such as problems with Iron overload, hair loss, malabsorption, Epstein-Barr virus, depression, and autoimmune.

Watch the video to know how to deal and the remedies to the aforementioned health issues.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

In this episode, we cover:

00:30     Iron Overload Relating to Vision, Energy and Oxidation Issues

02:00     Healthy Hair and Autoimmunity

05:00    Malabsorption During Intermittent Fasting

07:20    Recovering from Epstein-Barr Virus

11:30    Depression, Protein, and Brain Chemistry


Dr. Justin Marchegiani: He-hey! Hey! Dr. J in the house. Evan, how are we doing today, man?

Evan Brand: Hey, man. I’m doing great. Happy Monday to you.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Happy Monday to you. How was your weekend?

Evan Brand: It was great! Uh, actually, I’m feeling much better. I donated some blood again, which I was telling you off air, and my vision, which I thought was caused from overuse of looking at computer screens— my vision was kind of wonky—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yup.

Evan Brand: My vision literally cleared up, like right after donating blood. So, this is very interesting because you find nothing in the literature about vision and high Iron. At least maybe I just— unless I missed the research— I didn’t find anything. But when I got the blood out of my body, “Boom!” My vision was cleared. [crosstalk] Do you have any explanation—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know a podcast on this recently too with elevations in Iron. I think back in May, we did a nice podcast on this— how that can create some oxidation issues. It could have been some kind of oxidation reaction. It could have been just maybe putting some stress on your antioxidant reserves. It’s hard to say, but I think it’s good everyone get their Iron levels checked. It’s something that I’ve been putting off. Uhm— I just try to do like at least two in-depth blood tests a year, and you know that involves a lot of vials. And then maybe one other test that involves blood like a micronutrient panel. That may be enough like three good times a year. I know we talked about with you kind of on the Phlebotomy side. That’s just doing something at least once a quarter.

Evan Brand: Yeah, and for people that are— you know, for women, specifically that are menstruating, this probably not an issue that’s gonna happen but we do have quite a bit of male listeners too. So if you guys are having any type of symptoms that are just not making sense, run that Iron panel because I was also noticing my mental energy was lower.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Totally.

Evan Brand: and— and when I left the Red Cross, my mental energy had skyrocketed. So, Iron, energy levels, uh— in terms of sleep, grogginess, mood— it could all be related to Iron overload, and I suspect more people have Iron overload. Males; suspect Iron overload, and— and most people don’t have a clue.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: One hundred percent. Well, let’s dig in here. We got a couple of questions here. One from Amy. Uh— what can man and woman do for hair loss? Well, first thing, for both sexes, is make sure your gut function’s doing well because if we’re not absorbing good fats and good proteins, we’re not gonna have the building blocks to make our healthy hair. That’s number one. Number two on the female side, and even the male side, is make sure thyroid function is optimal. I would say, you know, TSH, below two and a half. Your free T3 levels in the at least upper 50% range, free T3 wise, is adequate.  That’s—

Evan Brand: So what would that be? You see like a 2.8—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Above 3.0. Above 3. A  3.0 or above, I think is adequate. Low th— You need thyroid hormone to help mature and grow the— the hair follicles. So, low thyroid hormone levels could potentially drive hair follicle loss. In men, you can also see increases of DHT can start Oxygen and blood flow to the hair follicles so that’s why things like Arimidex had helped or you can do nal— Natural 5-alpha Reductase inhibitors like Selenium, Like Lycopene, Saw Palmetto, Pumpkin seed. This can kind of block a lot of that down. Now the question is why does a lot of that DHT increase— I mean, I would lean on inflammation. I would lean on Insulin-resistance. I would lean on genetic predisposition. So I would really just do your best to make sure inflammation’s under control, and then just really increase some of those nutrients to help block that 5-alpha reductase compounds— Zinc, Selenium, uhm— Saw Palmetto, uhmmm— uh— Lycopene, Pumpkin seed. Those are helpful nutrients that you can do. And the female side, I would just say, really just dial in the thyroid, really dial in the digestion. Those are gonna be the first things I would look at.

Evan Brand: Yeah, and look for the antibodies, too. And— And you said that without saying it. I know it’s in your brain but you didn’t say it-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh, yes.

Evan Brand: -which is, “Look at the antibodies,” because almost every single woman that you see and almost every single woman that I see has some type of an autoimmune component to her thyroid, so just making sure you get those antibody levels down.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, ni— fif— over 50% of thyroid issues are autoimmune, so when we talk about thyroid, autoimmune is already being plugged in as— as the big issue because that is gonna be the major mechanism. And we know gluten-sensitivity is a big part of that, so gluten can easily drive a lot of that. And if you just Google gluten or gluten issues or gluten sensitivity and to like Alopecia— Alopecia areata, which is an autoimmune condition with hair loss, not quite the same thing as like hair thinning. It’s you literally have patches of hair come out, and that can actually be autoimmune-driven, and we know there’s a gluten connection with Alopecia. Also, Yeast as well can potentially drive Alopecia and autoimmune stuff. O, anything that creates malabsorption in the gut, whether it’s bacteria, parasites, yeast overgrowth— anything that lowers thyroid, whether it’s lo— lower thyroid issue from a primary issue uh— with a pituitary, from stress, or whether it’s an autoimmune issue, and then, of course, the DHT stuff on the guy side.

Evan Brand: Any infections— addressing infections— ‘cause my [crosstalk] Reverse T3— Yeah. My— My reverse T3 was too high and a lot of it, I believe is my gut issues.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, absolutely. Now, Gabe writes in, “Can Intermittent fasting help me absorb nutrition better? Heard it also calm inflammation. I’m dealing with malabsorption.” I’ll let you tackle that one first, Evan.

Evan Brand: Yeah. So, intermittent fasting. I mean, there’s definitely some benefits. Now, if you’re dealing with malabsorption though, then, we got to figure out why is that happening. So, the first step would be to get a GI Map Stool test and try to look for infections. I’d also look at getting the organic acids and try to find maybe a yeast or a bacterial overgrowth issue because if those guys are stealing your nutrients, I’m more worried about that than worried about whether the fasting would help you absorb better. It’s like, “Okay. If you’ve got a bunch of these bugs, and every time you eat, they’re trying to eat too, to me that’s like the first priority.” And I dealt with this firstly, which is why my fingernails still have the ridges on them ‘cause I have now absorption issues for who knows— maybe fifteen years of my life. And in terms of calming inflammation, I mean, addressing the gut bugs will calm inflammation too. So, if you have H. pylori or some other bug, that’s also gonna keep you inflamed, and no matter how much you fast, you’re not gonna magically cure those bugs with fasting.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: No, you’re not. Again, we’d had conversation with people off air about fasting. I mean, I see a lot of issues with patients that have hormonal imbalances, where they’re very blood sugar sensitive. They go too long without eating, there’s a lot of irritability, a lot of adrenal and blood sugar issues, so a lot of people I see on that side feel eating a little bit more frequently. And we try to lengthen it, you know, between meals a little bit longer and move into being able to Intermittent fast. You know, they’re too weak, but most people benefit from intermittent fasting on the digestive side because they’re just giving their digestive system a break. Maybe they’re not eating the foods that will be aggravating it. And then that can kind of calms down the inflammation and then the gut works better for a period of time but it’s not gonna fix the root issue. It’s just giving it a break. It’s kind of like if, you know, you didn’t walk on your ankle for half the day, well, it may feel a little bit better in the last half of the day when you do because you gave it a little bit more time to rest if you will.

Evan Brand: Yep. So, I mean, it c— it could be part of a healing protocol but it’s not the cure-all.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: No. It’s not— It’s not root causal. There’s not— There’s no magic in eating nothing. If that’s the case, anyone that would be on the streets or homeless that didn’t eat, you know, would have perfect health, and that’s just not how it is. And I get that’s an oversimplification but it’s true.

Evan Brand: Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: We actually need nutrients to run our pathways.

Evan Brand: We do.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Uhmm— Justin writes in, “Dr. J, any recommendations on helping recover from Eipstein Barr virus? Uh— I’m a big fan of medicinal mushrooms. I’m gonna— I’m gonna take some right now actually. Oh! I just finished it yesterday. But Reishi medicinal mushrooms are excellent.

Evan Brand: Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Absolutely love that. Uhm— Longterm, I think Ashwagandha’s wonderful or the product called Ashwagandha Supreme. I love it. I take it for capsules during the week. Maybe—

Evan Brand: You do—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: …stress.

Evan Brand: Do you do evening doses as well or do you just do Ashwagandha during the day?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: If I’m stressed and I’m feeling like a little bit just like I had a long day with patients, I’m feeling really stressed, I’ll do that maybe some GABA and Magnesium just to kind of chill out.

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: But it can be helpful. It’s great long-term immune support. It’s great adrenal support, Cortisol modulation, and balancing good HPA Axis support. Also with that, we can do Silver. We can do Monolaurin. We can do the Reishi like I mentioned. That’s excellent. We can do Cat’s claw. Those are a couple— a really good support that could be done to help.

Evan Brand: Yeah. The Monolaurin’s great. The Lauric acid formula comes from coconuts. I have one called Biofilm Buster that I use, and that one is a— is a potent antiviral. And you really turned me on to the Silver, so the Silver could be useful too. And then, you mentioned the Reishi. I’d say, any of the mushrooms too, but Reishi would be probably the go to. Cordyceps, Shiitake, Maitake-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yup.

Evan Brand: -could be helpful. And then Astragalus. I’m a huge fan of Astragalus. I love taking it. I take it almost everyday during the summer because of all the ticks here. I don’t want to get Lyme. So I take three grams. I take seven capsules a day of Astragalus, and I have an organic source that I use, and that is helpful. To— you can’t really get rid of the virus. You can just shut Epstein-barr down. That’s kind of my understanding.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. Totally. “Any knowledge and opinions on the health benefits of carbon-60?” Never heard of it.

Evan Brand: Yeah. I have. Yeah, so the Carbon-60— it’s like this patented version of Olive oil. And—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh.

Evan Brand: -suppose to just be like this miracle cure, and everyone is taking it. Let me look and see if there was another ‘cause I had heard there’s another one that’s different though. So that’s one, and there’s another one that’s called C60, and it’s something different. It’s Avocado oil. And then there’s another one. That’s C60 Coconut oil. And—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. I’m familiar with the like the MCT Oil. Like the— the Hexanoic acid. Like, you know, Dave Asprey has it in the Brain Octane. Other people have it as well, which is primarily used by the brain. I’m familiar with that. That has six Carbons on it for sure.

Evan Brand: So, for example, a 4-ounce bottle of this stuff is a hundred dollars.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s really expensive.

Evan Brand: And it says— It’s a— It’s an—a monomolecular pure C60 suspended in Avocado oil. I mean, look. Anytime that there’s something promoted as like a Silver bullet like that, I just am a little bit skeptical. I’ve not personally taken it so I’m not gonna tell you that it’s not awesome, but it says here. What they do, get this. It says, “Here’s how we create C60. We use rods of elemental Carbon, vaporized by electricity in a Helium atmosphere. This method imitates the way C6— C60’s made in the atmosphere of giant red stars.”

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That just sounds a little bit out there for me. [laughs]

Evan Brand: For a hundred bucks for 4-ounce bottle.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh, yeah. That sounds a little crazy. I would need a lot more of clinical feedback on people that have had amazing results. But I mean, if w— if we’re just working on getting extra good carbons in there, good healthy fats— I mean, I think a good MCT Oil I think is a great way to go, but I’m not sure about this Carbon-60 thing.

Evan Brand: For a 16-ounce bottle, 370 dollars.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Crazy.

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Crazy. Crazy.

Evan Brand: So, let’s see. Let’s see like before and after Lab results. Okay. It promises to do this with Mitochondria. Okay. here’s before and after.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yes.

Evan Brand: Nothing else was done, except this supplement. Look at what it did to the mitochondria.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yes.

Evan Brand: Then I would be like, “Okay. It’s a miracle.”

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. Charlie writes in, “When doing the 201 CAR Test, will i negatively affect the test results if you walk to other rooms uh— to do waking sample? I mean, I would just try to follow the instructions as much as possible and not be doing a whole bunch of physical stress to check up  your Cortisol.

Evan Brand: Yup..

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Try to be as stationary as possible.

Evan Brand: Yup. Uh— Do you want me to read  this one from Gary?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah.

Evan Brand: I’ll read it for you.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, go ahead.

Evan Brand: “I’m dealing with depression, etc. They tell me plant-based diet. Been doing it for four weeks; not much success. Any thoughts? I’m not going back on meds.”

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. The big problem is a lot of people need protein for helping brain chemistry and it’s hard to get enough protein in a plant-based diet. It’s specially hard to get a lot of protein when you’re consuming a lot of carbohydrates along with it. And if you’re on the Insulin-resistant side, that could drive up inflammation. A lot of the new medications used that are coming out down the pipeline for Depression, they’re actually anti-inflammatory for the brain. ‘Cause they understand that inflammation on the brain can drive mood disorders, so the best thing is an anti-inflammatory die. A lot of plant-based diets may have a lot of Lectins and Phytates and a lot of other antinutrients in it, and/or could just be really high in carbohydrates. If you’re Insulin-resistant, that could be a problem. People that do best on a plant-based diet, typically, they’re gonna be supplementing additional protein needed from Hemp or Pea or Rice. And then a lot of times, we’ll be doing some B12. They may be doing a lot of good fat from Coconut and Olive and nuts and seeds. And they may be able to tolerate the carbs better, right? But it’s really hard to do it adequately without some kind of a plant-based protein supplement. And they’re probably doing DHEA, DHA algae support, uhm— fish oil support from algae instead. So that’s kind of how you can do it right. I think it’s easier to have the good animal proteins and animal fats in there ‘cause they’re— they’re so heat stable, and they’re so Protein-rich and fat-rich without all of the additional carbs with it. And we could still do a whole bunch of other plants we just try to choose healthy sources. And we prepare it in a way that makes it easier to digest and process.

Evan Brand: And I know we’ve done podcasts all on depression, so just go on Justin’s site,, or go on my site, Type in depression, you’ll find entire hours dedicated to this. Also, I believe uh— Justin and I both have done a YouTube video— I know I have for sure— on Depression and some of the stuff that helped me ‘cause I was depressed for a long time. So, just go like on YouTube, type in Depression, Just in Health or Evan Brand, you’ll find the videos.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Totally. Cool. Let’s keep on rolling. “Is there a supplement to help me fall asleep and stay asleep? I wake up every night, one to three times, and have uh— have trouble sleeping sometimes as well.” Evan, what do you think.

Evan Brand: I mean, that’s hard, right? There could be a million reasons why you can’t fall asleep. What if you’re checking your phone? You’re probably looking at your phone on social media before bed, which is terrible idea. You’re suppressing Melatonin. So it could be something that simple. It could be that your Cortisol’s a little too e— elevated. It could be that you’re having a blood sugar crisis in the middle of the night. Blood sugar’s crashing and that’s waking you up. It could be that your liver’s overburdened. It could be that you— you know, you have too much light pollution in your bedroom, or you have dirty electricity in your bedroom, or your— your bedroom is too warm and you’re restless because of it, or your bed sucks and it’s too uncomfortable, or you have gut infections that are waking you up. You know what I mean? So this is like a huge kind of worms, and you’re not gonna get the answer that quick. But is there a supplement that could help? Yeah, maybe. You could try like PharmaGABA. You could try Ashwagandha that Justin was just talking about, Reishi mushroom [crosstalk] could be helpful. Yeah, Phosphatidylserine is great, but you got to figure out the root cause ‘cause something is like are going on, and those are just a few ideas to think about. So look into your gut. Look into your adrenals.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. If there’s— If it’s an Anxiety issue, sometimes women that have lower Progesterone levels, that could be a problem too. So there’s a potential— bunch of potential things there and it’s different for each sex. So I mean, we have to know kind of male, female, menopausal, cycling whatever— That— That helps a lot too.

Evan Brand: Yeah. There was a follow-up from the same person here. “What is the reason why I wake up with sore legs? They feel heavy. Uh— I mean, and no exercise a day before.” That could just be Mitochondria. What do you think?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It could be Mitochondrial stuff. I’d look at how much amino acids you’re getting and just try to get some good mitochondrial support and some extra amino acids in and see. Uhm— I also want to know, what’s your day like? Are you at a stand desk? Are you sitting all day? Are you— Are you seated all day? What does that stress look like? Uhm— It’s really hard to say. Are you getting enough minerals? Could it be like some kind of a— a muscle cramping thing because of mineral issues? Really hard to say. And then, of course, anytime we gut issues, gut issues can cause any symptoms, so anytime I see like weird symptoms, I’m like, “Alright. Let’s look at the gut. Let’s look at infections. Let’s look at potential autoimmunity through foods ‘cause that can easily drive like kind of Fibromyalgia-like symptoms, which can cause those kinds of symptoms as well.” So, yeah.

Evan Brand: I think we’ve got— you’ve got like,literally, one minute so let’s-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Right.

Evan Brand: -try to hit one more.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Absolutely. “Any thoughts on Iodine for thyroid health, Lugol’s, Iodoral, or Nasient?”

Evan Brand: Well—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So, in general, like Nasient’s a big thing. I think uhm— Dr. Edward Group at Global Healing Center pushes that one. I think the dose is reasonable. I’m not sure if it needs to be in this nasient form. Uh— A good Potassium Iodine/Iodide I think is fine. I have one called Iodine synergy that works great. I’m a big fan of number one, make sure thyroid inflammation and inflammation in the body is generally stabilized before you add Iodine in. I start lower at a couple hundred micrograms and work up slowly. I’ve seen more negative effects from going too high with Iodine than not, so I err on the side of going lower and tapering up slower with some of the Lugol’s, maybe at 2-5 milligrams, which in my opinion is too high if you have it. You may just put a drop in— in and out and seven ounces of water and just do a quick sip once a day. In that way, you can only break it down to like one-seventh of the dose. But in general, I try to go slower, work it up, make sure there’s adequate Selenium and other minerals present. Magnesium, Zinc— those kind of things. Good multi there. Good, rich diet and minerals before you go up. I’m always concerned about, you know, too high and exacerbating an autoimmune attack.

Evan Brand: Yeah. That’s— That’s what I was gonna say was that if there is autoimmunity, you got to be careful ‘cause it can make it worse and we’ve seen the antibodies go up from people that went to a practitioner-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yes.

Evan Brand: -and they just got like superdosed with Iodine, and— and they got worse. So—

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Hundred percent. Cool, Evan. Anything else you wanted to mention?

Evan Brand: I think that’s it. I mean, we can hit up the other questions, you know, next week, but we’ve both got a roll. And so, in the meantime, if you want to reach out to Justin for help, got to his site,, and if you want to check out me, you can check out We love helping you all. We love talking to you and we’ll be back next Monday.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. I’ll be back on Friday for my live Q&A, guys, so any questions I didn’t get to, we’ll hit it up there. Give me a like. Give me a thumbs up. Give me a share. Palm that bell. Tell a friend or family member. We’re here to help you all-all. We love interacting. I appreciate you guys being uh— active participants in this conversation.

Evan Brand: Take care.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Evan, take care. Bye.


Dave Asprey in Brain Octane

Dr. Edward Group at Global Healing Center

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