Natural Solutions To A Good Night Sleep

Natural Solutions To A Good Night SleepBy Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Roughly half of all Americans suffer from insomnia, and according to the National Center for Sleep Disorders,  around 15% of the population deals with chronic insomnia on a daily basis. What’s more, the WHO (World Health Organization) considers shift-work or sleep deprivation the only non-substance carcinogen known to man. That puts a lack of sleep in the same class as cigarettes, asbestos, and other known carcinogenic chemicals!

Sleep is vitally important to help repair the body physiologically as well as psychologically. Physiological repair, such as building muscles, bones, tendons, joints and ligaments etc., occurs between the hours of 10 PM and 2 AM. During this timeframe, HGH (human growth hormone) peaks. You can think of HGH as your anti-aging hormone, consider getting maximal sleep as gaining $2000-$3000 of anti-aging treatment per month for free!

After your body’s HGH peak comes the mental repair. Between the hours of 2 and 6 AM the body psychologically regenerates, and neurotransmitters and other neurochemicals that help with mental health are recycled and repaired.

Cortisol and it’s Circadian Rhythm

Cortisol and it’s Circadian Rhythm

The accelerated health risks for poor sleep

Studies have associated numerous health risks with a lack of good sleep. These include:

Increased risk of diabetes

Accelerated aging

An increased risk of cancer

Decreased immune function

Obesity and excessive weight gain

Poor physical performance

Slow mental acuity

It’s estimated that over $100 billion is lost each year due to the loss of productivity that a lack of sleep causes. Lack of sleep is also the leading cause of 100,000 vehicle accidents per year and the associated 1,500 deaths.

The major underlying causes of sleep deprivation:

17% of all US employees are shift workers who stay up working during the night instead of sleeping. If I can urge you to make one decision as an investment in your health, the first thing would be finding a job that allows flexibility to sleep during normal sleep hours. The research is very clear, the increased risk of chronic degenerative diseases and lack of performance will cost you more in the long run financially and physically.

Chronic stressors can be a huge underlying cause of sleep problems. This includes relationship stress, caffeine, chronic illness, infections, blood sugar imbalances, family stress, and hormonal imbalances. One thing that all stress has in common- whether it’s internal stress or external stress- is the increase of cortisol and adrenaline.

Knocking your cortisol and adrenaline out of balance puts a great deal of stress on your adrenal glands. Your cortisol rhythm at night is intimately linked to your melatonin rhythm (melatonin is your night time/sleep hormone). The more you push your cortisol and adrenaline out of balance, the more your melatonin will also be negatively impacted – and so will your sleep.

Stimulants such as caffeine can prevent you from getting to sleep on time. Caffeine has a half-life of up to eight hours, so be sure to consume your coffee or caffeinated tea before 2 PM in order to give your body enough time to metabolize the caffeine before your bedtime.

Certain medications can also interfere with sleep: antidepressants, corticosteroids, allergy medication, and blood pressure medication to name a few. If you are currently taking medication and also have a sleep problem, please look up the possible side effects of the medication you are taking to see if sleep disturbances are a potential side effect.

Click here if you are having sleep difficulties.

Dr. Justin’s Top 7 Sleep Enhancing Tips

  1. Exercise daily. Burst training and resistance training can make a significant impact on your sleep. The right kinds of exercise can increase human growth hormone, which has the ability to blunt potential cortisol spikes and to increase your body’s repair.
  2. Pick relaxing teas, such as chamomile or sleepy tea, before bed. These types of teas contain particular amino acids, such as L-theanine, which help to increase certain neurotransmitters like GABA to help promote relaxation.
  3. For certain individuals melatonin can be a great choice.  I recommend using a sublingual variety, which helps increase absorption as well as increasing activation time. However, melatonin may not be right for every single person. For some individuals, taking melatonin actually makes sleep issues worse! When this occurs there’s usually an underlying hormonal imbalance present.
  4. Many of my menopausal female patients have hormonal imbalances that need to be addressed. Low progesterone is a common cause of sleep deprivation and insomnia. Progesterone has a relaxation effect that occurs by opening the GABA chloride channels in the brain, and can have an effect similar to taking a Xanax– without the side effects. Running a female hormone test can help evaluate this imbalance as well as provide the specific dosing information.
  5. Buy a white noise machine or even download a white noise app- there are plenty available for free! White noise can be very helpful at blocking out ambient noise that could potentially wake you up throughout the night. If you opt for an app, please be sure to keep your phone in airplane mode while you’re sleeping (you should be doing this at night regardless). The EMF from your phone can disrupt your sleep and can even prevent you from getting into deeper phases of sleep!
  6. Eating a little bit of protein and fat within two hours of your bedtime can help stabilize your blood sugar and prevent cortisol spikes during the night. The suggestion may go against conventional wisdom in regards to eating right before bed, but low blood sugar throughout the night will cause your cortisol to go up, and that cortisol spike can disrupt your sleep and cause you to wake up. A little bit of protein and fat before bed can make a big difference.
  7. Give yourself at least one hour before bed to wind down. Turn off the TV, tablets, computers, phones, etc. and pick up a non-stimulating book instead. Engaging in meditation and prayer before bed can be very helpful as well. It doesn’t have to be complicated- a simple meditation is simply counting backwards from 10 to 0 with all of your attention focused on your breath, not the problems and stressors of yesterday or tomorrow. Engaging in prayer- especially focused on gratitude and all that you have to be thankful for in your life- can provide a natural neurotransmitter and hormonal boost that can set you up for a great night sleep!

To receive my full handout entitled “33 secrets to a good night sleep,” click here!

To help get your sleep and energy back on track click here!

Healthy Eating Diet But Still Can’t Lose Weight? – Podcast #56

Dr. Justin Marchegiani and Evan Brand discuss about exercise and diet including the stress hormones and the thyroid connection. They talk about sleep and how it can affect blood sugar and insulin. Find out what are the things you need to get dialed in to get the results you want for fat loss and weight reduction.

weight lossDiscover how functional medicine lab tests and blood sugar markers play an important role for burning fat in his podcast. Also find out why  Dr. Justin recommends getting reverse osmosis countertop filters as part of his water filtration system to get rid of fluoride.

In this episode, topics include:

13:15   About cortisol and insulin

18:05   Functional medicine labs/Blood sugar markers

20:37   Metabolism damage

22:26   All about fluoride

26:27   HCG diet

 

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Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Hey there, it’s Dr. Justin Marchegiani and welcome to Beyond Wellness Radio.  Feel free and head over to beyondwellnessradio.com where you can access our full podcast transcriptions.  While you’re there, you can also sign up for our Thyroid and Female Hormone video series.  This series goes into the root cause of why your hormones are out of balance.  While you’re there, you can also schedule a functional medicine consult with Dr. Justin, myself, where we’ll dig deeper into the root cause of your health challenges.  Feel free and think of sharing this podcast with at least one person.  This podcast grows by people sharing it.  Sharing is caring.  If you can think of one person that can benefit from this information, please feel free and share it.  If you’re enjoying the podcast, make sure you subscribe on iTunes.  You can also click below the video or podcast where you’ll see the iTunes review button and leave us a review.  You can also sign up for the newsletter at beyondwellnessradio.com where you’ll updates before anyone else.  Thank you so much and enjoy the show.

Hello, ladies and germs.  This is Dr. J here.  I’m with Evan Brand, the one and only.  Evan, what’s going on, man?

Evan Brand:  Hey, not much.  Did you just say ladies and germs?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I did.  I’m sorry.  It’s Friday.  I’m actually heading out to Vegas tomorrow, so I’m feeling pretty good.

Evan Brand:  Awesome.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Feeling loose.

Evan Brand:  Awesome.  You gonna have some fun down there?  What are you gonna do?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Actually, when I go to Vegas, I like to eat really good rib eye steaks.  I don’t gamble.  I don’t stay out late.  I go see really good shows and like sleep 10 hours a night.

Evan Brand:  That’s awesome.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s super boring.

Evan Brand:  You know I used to live there, right?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I know, you did.  So Evan, today we’re gonna talk about diets and we’re gonna talk about people that have finally, you know, got themselves on a really healthy diet but they’re not losing weight.  And again, I see this a lot more in my female patients.  What’s your take?

Evan Brand:  Oh, yeah.  It’s very common.  Yeah, men don’t seem to have as much of an issue which may be we get into why that’s the case.  But it’s always the women, whether it’s a patience issue.  Not patients as in people, but patience with C-E at the end.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yup.

Evan Brand:  Or it’s some hormonal stuff.  I mean, there’s so many–there’s so many that, well, you know, we get to break down some of those today.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I get a lot of patients that come on, you know, come under care and they’re going on Paleo or they’re going autoimmune Paleo or GAPs or SCD, and they don’t quite lose weight off the bat and the question is why?  And what I find is that–great quote from Dr. Diana Schwarzbein in her book, The Schwarzbein Principle 1, 2–but she talks about you don’t lose weight to get healthy, you get healthy to lose weight.  You get healthy then you lose weight.  And that lag time between getting healthy and losing weight can vary a lot from person to person, especially if there’s a history of excessive exercise, starvation, lots of food allergies, chronic infections, it could be months or it could potentially even be years because of the damage to the metabolism via the thyroid, via the adrenals, and there can be a lot of delay or time gap in how that responds to you going on this new diet and to that weight actually coming off.

Evan Brand:  Yeah and actually, you know, I’ve actually had some people at the other end of the spectrum where they started losing weight in the very beginning and actually have one lady right now who I’m trying to help train for a triathlon and it’s really tough for me as a coach to–to support that type of exercise wondering what her hormone test look, you know.  It’s hard for me to say, “That’s okay for you to train that many miles,” and now she’s hit this weight loss plateau and it’s like, well, you cannot have cake and eat it, too.  We kinda have to make a compromise together here if you wanna get results.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Exactly.  So some of the big things off the bat, I can see patients–we get our patients literally lose weight off the bat and we get some that do great, and then we have some that flounder a little bit.  I had one patient just the other day.  She was about 2 months or a month and a half into her parasite-killing program.  She–blasto–H. pylori and a month and a half, they’ve lost almost 20 pounds.  So we see that time to time, could be inflammation thing–when we see it all just stress hormones, cortisol–resistance–with the cortisol levels, if it drops–the thyroid issues, all these things can be made issues from a hormonal perspective and just because you changed the diet, it doesn’t mean the hormones go right–if it were that way but if we do specific programs that push the adrenals and support the adrenals, support the HPA axis, and support the thyroid, we can promote healing fast.  So that’s the goal of these.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, and there–there is some variability with the speed, you know–one here, well, what the number–few weeks, how many months does it gonna take for me to lose those 20 pounds?  My answer is always, it depends.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely.  And I see some people actually gain weight until FYI, I did my blood sugar during the show, that was due–today I’m at 93, so pretty good.  You know, under a hundred.  I can feel adrenalin go through and I’m about ready to eat lunch–just a bit–5 hours from last meal so right on that blood sugar throw there.  And blood sugar is probably the talk that we should go into, we did a whole podcast on it recently into weight loss.  So we know blood sugar is really important because the higher our blood sugar is, the more insulin we make, and we know insulin primarily a fat-storing hormone, and when we make insulin, we also typically pump out leptin, too.  So if we have something known as insulin resistance, we typically also have leptin resistance, and that can basically allow us to store more of our calories into fat and it can also keep us hungry.  Keep from feeling satiated so we overeat.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, and then kind of the–I don’t know if you’d call it the ozing hormone so to speak but then you have ghrelin, your hunger hormone.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  And if you look at studies in people’s leptin and ghrelin levels when they have sleep deprivation, ghrelin is elevated significantly.  So think of ghrelin as growling, like your stomach–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, that’s ghrelin.

Evan Brand:  And you’re gonna have, I mean, and I–I totally feel this, man, the nights that I try to–if I stay up too late for some reason.  I–I usually never do but if I do, I regret it because the next day, I’m starving and no matter what I eat, I just can’t cure my appetite, you know.  And so, I say cure it like appetite’s a disease or something, but–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I know what you mean.

Evan Brand:  I can’t satiate myself.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Right, and we see that a lot with sleep, right?  You also have blood sugar issues with sleep.  You actually become more insulin resistant.  They took college students and they had them stay up, I think only sleep 4 hours a night for 2 weeks and within a couple of days, they were pre-diabetic regarding their blood sugar.

Evan Brand:  Oh.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So if we do that, right?  Sleep, that’s also gonna cause us to be more insulin-resistant, meaning we’re gonna store especially our carbohydrates more efficiently to fat and then number two, we’re gonna be over hungry which when we’re over hungry, what are the food we typically reach for?

Evan Brand:  Probably the carbs, the quick–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  The carbs?

Evan Brand:  Burst of glucose.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, probably the carbs.  So insulin-resistance, leptin, ghrelin, those are really key things.  I don’t focus too much on the leptin because I find that like the first domino that knocks over is gonna be insulin resistance.  So if you focus on the insulin resistance, it typically gets the leptin resistance dialed in.  And simple thing like I’m doing right now, you can see on video, blood sugar test your fasting blood sugar.  Test 1, 2, 3 hours post meals.  See how your body’s dealing with sugar, also get a fasting insulin in the morning.  Ideally, less than 7 should be where you be, ideally under 5 but less than 7.  That means that your body doesn’t need that much insulin to soak up that sugar.  Less insulin means less ability to store as fat and more ability to burn fuel and burn fat for fuel.  Because insulin automatically blocks fat from being burned.  So just kinda keep that in mind.  High insulin means you’re a sugar burner, lower insulin’s gonna mean you’re a fat burner.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, and I want to kinda repeat that in a different way just so people really get that through because I have to go through this explanation and if we can refer someone to this podcast instead of spending 20 minutes on a topic explaining it to a patient–you cannot burn fat when insulin levels are peaked.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  If your tank of insulin is full, fat loss is not going to happen until that insulin gets in check.  I wish I could say it like 3 other ways or something–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  But I think that’s hopefully helpful for people, is that if insulin’s high, if you%

The Visible and Invisible Stress Connection – Podcast #50

Meet Evan Brand, the new new guest co-host of Dr. Justin Marchegiani for Beyond Wellness Radio. Today’s topic is all about stress and how to handle it. Find out what Shinrin-yoku aka “forest bathing” is all about and what adaptogens help with relieving stress significantly. This podcast discusses about the Paleo template, power poses and how posture can impact your hormones, as well as other lifestyle recommendations. 
visible and invisible stress

Evan Brand is the creator of Not Just Paleo who shares great advice on taking control of your own health, happiness, and vitality. Learn more about the different kinds of Ginseng depending on where they’re grown and the kinds of mushrooms you can take as supplements. Listen and discover how to find good quality herbs and what types of blends are recommended.

In this episode, topics include:

2:50  All about stress

13:05   Importance of posture

16:13   What adaptogens are

18:40   The different kinds of Ginseng depending on where they’re grown

23:15   Organic mushroom blends

 

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Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Hey, there!  It’s Dr. Justin Marchegiani and welcome to another awesome episode of Beyond Wellness Radio. We now have full podcast transcriptions over at JustInHealth.com.  Head over to JustInHealth.com, click on the Podcast button and you’ll be able to access all shows forward and past.  And while you’re there, feel free and sign up for the Thyroid and Hormone Video Series.  Some great information there for everyone and while you’re there, you can also sign up for the Podcast Newsletter where you’ll get access to these podcasts right in your inbox before anyone else.  While you’re there, you can also schedule a consult with myself, if you wanna dive in to any other functional medicine or health issues.

Again, stay tuned for the show and if you’re enjoying it, please feel free and share it.  Sharing is caring.  Think of one person that could benefit from this show and share it.  And also, feel free and head over to BeyondWellnessRadio.com/iTunes and send us a review.  We really appreciate it.  Thanks and enjoy the show!

Hey, this is Dr. Justin Marchegiani here with Beyond Wellness Radio and I am super stoked that we have our new guest co-host here Evan Brand from notjustpaleo.com?

Evan Brand:  Yup, that’s right.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Awesome, Evan.  Great!  So today we’re gonna be chatting a little bit about stress and–and things you can do to help reduce stress.  But again, feel free and check out JustInHealth.com and BeyondWellnessRadio.com.  We have all of the podcasts up for full transcriptions and you can subscribe to the YouTube channel to also get the podcast as well.  And a lot of nice freebies on the website like our Thyroid and Female Hormone Video Course as well.  Evan, what’s going on with you today, man?

Evan Brand:  Oh, not much.  I’m staring at the clouds hoping they’ll break up so I can get outside and play in the woods later today.  But I’m excited to talk about stress today, man, just because it’s such a timely subject for myself trying to multitask 20 different things at the same time without burning myself out.  So I’m sure other people are in the same scenario.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, and how can people find your podcast?

Evan Brand:  They could just search notjustpaleo or I–I’m that cool now that if you just Google Evan Brand, you’ll find me that way, too, and all my podcasts.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Good, awesome!  I figured it maybe Russel Brand would come up there in the search, too.  But–you out–outbid him.

Evan Brand:  Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s good.  Very cool!  It’s good to have your own brand, right?

Evan Brand:  Yup, definitely.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Pun intended.

Evan Brand:  Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So, yeah, let’s talk about stress.  Why don’t you go first?

Evan Brand:  Sure, so I guess it’s helpful to talk about my first realization of stress.  You know, I’m a pretty relaxed guy overall and I didn’t really get my first taste of stress until I moved down to Austin a couple of years ago and had a–a big, big cool desk job career and all of that and moved down there with my–my now wife, and we got our own place and paying all the big bills, you know, growing up, becoming a man, and–and moving thousands of miles away to–to chase my dream.  And I started to have all these weird symptoms like insomnia.  I was just laying in bed staring at the ceiling.  I couldn’t figure out what was going on because I was exercising, I was eating Paleo, I mean it’s like–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  Come–come on, I mean, I’m doing everything right.  What’s going on?  And so it slowly became harder for me to adjust to stress.  I was becoming easily startled.  I mean, if I heard a loud boom, I would kinda jump when I used to not jump.  So I figured that some–some nervous system taxation was happening and I needed to figure out how to recover it.  So I basically just began researching adaptogens at that point and relied heavily on them as a–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  As a stepping stone or maybe a crutch if you will for the time being, and then long story short, I ended up writing the Stress Solutions book, which I still don’t think I’ve given you a paperback copy of, but I basically tried to boil everything that I was going through down–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  Into an actionable plan so that other people could apply it.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s great.  I mean, stress is one of those, you know, things that people just kinda think about emotional stress as being stress, right?  As stressful.  They don’t think about, “Hey, I’m sitting all day or I have low blood sugar or I have reactive hypoglycemia or maybe I have low stomach acid.”  We don’t think of those things as being stressful.  And I think with functional medicine, we really wanna highlight the underlying chemical stressors that people forget about, because those are like the–the hidden energy zap of your adrenals, of your body’s reserve, and–and the lower your adrenals are, typically the lower ability that you have to adapt to stress.  Because it’s really all about adaptation and that’s one of the cool things that, you know, mean you’re both really passionately about is adaptogenic herbs because they really help your body deal with stress. We just gotta make sure the–the diet component is down because that’s such a–a big factor as you talked about to–to just being the foundation of helping to deal with stress.  Having those good meals, having that good sleep.  That really sets the foundation throughout the day so you can deal with more stress.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, well, I think the–the part you’ve kind of alluded to where people mess themselves up with stress is that they get so busy, right?  They’re trying to be so productive that they forget to eat.  I mean, you and I are probably are guilty of this ourselves sometimes we’re–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Uh-hmm.

Evan Brand:  Sitting on the computer and you look and, “Holy crap!  It’s–it’s 2 PM and I haven’t eaten lunch yet,” and the blood sugar issues.  I mean, you’ve even hounded me before, “Evan, you gotta get that blood sugar in check, man.”  And it–it’s a huge deal for general stress.  It’s a stress to the adrenals, you’re having to produce cortisol to raise up your blood sugar levels and people that–people may be familiar with cortisol and how it’s–it’s not always evil, you know, it has a place in your body.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  It does.

Evan Brand:  Otherwise, you wouldn’t be able to–to get up and–and do your work in the morning when you get hopefully, you get bright light exposure outdoors.  But you know, the cortisol picture when it comes to food was a–was a huge deal for me and I had to become more regimented in eating my meals.  So if you’re trying to get a take away from this, it would be to eat regular meals.  Try not skip meals, intermittent fasting and things like that have a great place but if you’re the type of person that’s listening and you feel like you’re recovering slowly from cuts and wounds and your sleep is messed up and you’re relying on the cups of coffee to keep you fueled up, then you may be–you may want to look at that diet picture and make sure you’re getting enough food but that you’re getting it in somewhat regular frequency, wouldn’t you say?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I think so, too.  And having a Paleo template, I don’t like the word diet, I like the word template because it allows the individuality of what your macronutrients may be best for you.  Again, my default is always to a lower carb Paleo template because lower carb tends to emphasize more on the vegetables and less on the starch and–and sugar or fruit so to speak.  Again, there’s a place for starch, there’s a place for fruit.  But anyone that has weight gain as a complaint in their top 5, emphasizing the lower carb is a starting point for their low carb Paleo template.  I think it’s a really good place to start with.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  And I think, 1 pat p2, sorry to cut you off there, is there are a lot in the Paleo community and this really drives me nuts where they make the exception the rule.  Where they may be able to eat something or they may be able to fast all day or they may be able to do that and then they go on and blog and talk about their–them being the exception and this is the rule and recommend it for everyone.  And I’m in a unique position because I’m in the trenches dealing with 40+ functional medicine patients a week from all over the world and I get to see the common trends in why and–why and what these people who are sick are doing.  And it’s a common trend of blood sugar stability being a major issue as a common trend of skipping meals and not eating breakfast, and there’s a lot of–when these issues are addressed from a–a diet and lifestyle perspective, people see an improvement.  So not everyone may be able to fast and do intermittent fasting.  Not everyone can skip breakfast.  People really have to be more diligent with their meals, the more broken or stressed their physiology is.

Evan Brand:  Yeah.  A man–a woman I was actually working with yesterday, she said, “Evan, I’ve read all the Mark’s Daily Apple Success Stories and I’ve done everything they’ve done, but yet I’m not losing weight,” and it’s–it’s so simple to see that and you see what works for someone so everybody does all of this self-diagnosing and self-treating and I think that’s a really good part about the Internet is that people are allowed to empower themselves but–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  I think that’s where the role of you and I really come in because people have tried to fix themselves and it just doesn’t work because they’re basing themselves off of someone else’s unique bio-individuality and you’re destined to fail that way.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I mean it’s like if you get summons to court.  Let’s say something happened.  You’re called to court. I mean do you go online and just try to figure out the hacks so you can do good in court?  I mean, 9 times out of 10, the people that represent themselves in court, unless they’re a lawyer themselves, they don’t do too well.  So it’s like you get the lawyer because it’s worth it in the end because if you don’t, you know, a lot of bad things could happen.  And same thing in functional medicine and the functional nutritional world is that you can waste a lot more time because, you know, you only have your m=1 to go from.  You only have just your experience and it’s hard to connect the dots when you haven’t seen a lot of different experienced and–and then connect the commonalties.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.  And I wanted to talk a little more about the lifestyle part of stress and something that’s really cool in the research lately and that’s Shinrin-yoku, aka “forest bathing”.  I think I may have talked–talked to you about it before–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  But for people that–that don’t know, it’s called Shinrin-yoku by the Japanese and when you’re looking in PubMed if you’re, you know, a physician listening and you wanna research it yourself, type in Shinrin-yoku or forest bathing, and you’ll see the results these Japanese researchers have taken.  There was one particular study that took 420 individuals out into the woods, several different forests and they took them–some out–were out there for a few days and some were out there for just 15 minutes and then the control group were people that were walking down the sidewalk in the city and they took salivary cortisol measures before and after this.  And there was a significant reduction, I don’t remember the exact percentage, but–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Wow.

Evan Brand:  A significant reduction in reduction in cortisol levels after just 15 minutes in the forest but even more interesting is that their NK killer cells, they’re immune cells were boosted not only for that day, but even 1 month after.  I do remember this percentage, 23% boost in NK killer cells, 1 month after a hike in the woods.  So–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Whoa!

Evan Brand:  If you have the opportunity to take a trip to the woods or if you have maybe a trail behind you–when I was in Austin on the southwest side of town there was a pretty good patch of woods back there and I would go walk through there at the end of a stressful day and I felt significantly better.  Obviously the peace and quiet, not having to hear car alarms and sirens and things like that is helpful in itself but it kinda boils down to the airborne chemicals; they call them the–the phytoncides I believe it is.  It’s these airborne chemicals that trees and plants put off.  Of course, your body’s gonna benefit from those.  That’s what we’ve naturally been exposed to for a million years at this point.  So I just wanted to kinda throw that piece of research out there and encourage people to get outdoors.  If you’re stressed out at your desk, there is a reason.  Get off your desk and go out there and just try to get a change of environment.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  And that’s really important to get out there, get your Vitamin D, do some grounding, lots of good benefits and I love having some of the physiology, some of the objective markers behind it.  Because you hear some of these things and you’ll like, “Oh, you’re just a hippie or whatever.”  It’s cool to have the science behind it because you’re like, “Oh, wow!  This is–this is legit.  This isn’t just like, you know, some hippie telling me what to do.”

Evan Brand:  Exactly.  Totally.  I know it definitely helps my credibility.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, and there’s another cool thing because, you know, frankly we’re not gonna–we’re gonna spend more time inside, most of us.  That’s just the way it is.  So what can we do to help with that?  I’ve invested in my office at home and my office at work to have stand desk where I can have my desk literally go up or down.  And I’m sitting right now as you can see on the feed here, but I’ve been standing most of the day and I will stand most of the day.  And that makes a huge difference for me, the standing, being able to move around and posture is so important.  Amy Cuddy did a TED talk and she again let’s take some of the objective markers here.  She took people that were in this kinda slouched over posture and she ran salivary cortisol and she had them stand up and pull their shoulders back, and they went to this power pose with their arms up reaching overhead, kinda like maybe they’re running back when they score a touchdown or Stallone in the Rocky movies once he gets to the top of those steps and he puts his arms up.  And she had people literally just take their arms, put them above their head and hold them there for 2 minutes.  And she ran salivary cortisol and testosterone and she saw a 20% reduction in cortisol, that stress hormone and an improvement in testosterone just with a postural change for 2 minutes.

Evan Brand:  That’s awesome.  Yeah, I mean, and I–I write some stuff like that on my lifestyle recommendations when I’ll make a plan.  I’ll tell people, “Look, I want you to stand with your hands on your hips and–“

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yes.

Evan Brand:  “Put your chest up,” and I do feel a bit like a hippie when I’m telling people that, but I’m glad that there’s more verification there.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I mean, she ran salivary cortisols, salivary hormones, and you know, we do that in our practice with our patients and it’s great to see simple things like posture.  And when I got to the gym I do like foundation training exercises which is like Eric Goodman’s work or I’ll do work where I’ll sit up against the wall, ankles, butt, shoulders and head, and I’ll keep my jaw level with the–with the ground.  Then I’ll pull my head back into that postural position and really work on strengthening the deep cervical flexors in front by the neck and stretching those back posterior cervical extensors and really work on good posture because we know posture is so important even to your hormones.

Evan Brand:  That’s cool.  So, I mean, that all does tie into stress because you–when you are stressed, you’re more likely to curl up in a ball–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  You are.

Evan Brand:  And just feel depressed, and I mean, there’s no better word, depressed.  Your–your physiology is depressed, your posture, I mean, everything about you is exuding depression and stress.  So I mean, if you are feeling stressed this may be a time for you to stand up while you’re listening to this podcast and–and try out some of these poses.  When I’m out in nature, expressing, and I like to put arms out and put my palms up and just, “Ahhh” just open up like, “I’m powerful!”  You know?  And it’s goofy but–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah.

Evan Brand:  It makes you feel better.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, my wife caught one time in the office, me doing the power pose reaching the arms overhead, and she’s like, “What are you doing?”  And I’m like, “Ahh, power poses.  Trying to decrease my cortisol.”  And–and she gets it though.  So, yeah, those power poses are coo, maybe play a little Eye of The Tiger and you know, get in that position, you know, and get–get pumped throughout the day.  So, yeah.  I agree.  Posture is a–is a big one and it can really help your hormones.

Evan Brand:  Definitely.  Well, what–what’s the next topic of–of stress?  Or what’s the next facet of stress you think that we’ve hit on?  We’ve hit on the lifestyle a little bit.  We’ve hit on the diet.  What am I missing?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So I think the diet and the lifestyle stuff, that’s the foundation.  Don’t do anything else until you have that mastered because that’s gonna be your best bang for your buck.  But you know, we’re big fans of adaptogens. I know you’ve worked at–on it for a bit, designing some of these custom blends and I have some blends in the work here that I use with my patients with various adaptogens.  I’m a huge fan of them because, I mean, everyone should be on an adaptogen in my opinion.

Evan Brand:  I agree. Yeah.  I took my adaptogens this morning.  I actually have been experimenting. I don’t have any affiliation with them but I’ve been experimenting with the Organic India Joy! blend–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I think it’s a–

Evan Brand:  And it’s Ashwagandha, Shankpushpi, Gotu Kola, and one– Bacopa.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Bacopa.  Ooh, that’s a nice one.

Evan Brand:  It’s an awesome stack.  I mean, when–actually I didn’t take it this morning.  I should have for this podcast but I end up with a perma-grin for a few hours afterwards.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Oh, wow!  That’s good.  I’m gonna have to give you one Paleo to merit today for not taking your adaptogens.

Evan Brand:  Well–well, no, I did take–I did take Ashwagandha and I take a–a mushroom complex as well.  So I’m on some adaptogens but not that one yet.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Nice.  Nice.  Yeah, I’m on about 800 mg of Eleuthero and also about 600 mg of Rhodiola today.

Evan Brand:  That’s great.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So it’s just a Rhodiola-Eleuthero day and I’m feeling good. My wife, she forgot to take her adaptogens for the last couple of weeks, just kind of got into that–that stress routine and I could see, like there was a big difference in her mood, and we just got her up on the adaptogens in which she came home from work, her mood was just a thousand times better and you know, she’s–you know, an executive of a really big Internet company so she has a lot of stress on her and–and adaptogens for her make a massive difference–

Evan Brand:  That’s so cool.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  In how she performs.

Evan Brand:  Talk–talk about her stack a little bit.  I’m sure people are curious about–if she is taking capsules, tinctures, etc.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, so for her, we have her on some female hormone tincture blends to help with hormones and keeping her cycle optimized.  And then she is on a similar stack as me right now because I create her regimens and programs, so it’s easier for her just to kinda piggyback on what I’m doing.  So we use some of the same adaptogens, but typically I go back and forth between Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, Eleuthero, I’ll mix in some Panax Ginseng or Red Root Ginseng, and we’ll even do some Holy Basil at night and those are the big ones that I–I tend to go for.  Yeah, for adaptogen in qualities.

Evan Brand:  So Eleuthero, that’s the same thing as–that’s the Siberian version of Ginseng, right?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, so Ginseng is typically or made up of where they’re–where they’re grown, right?  The phyto signature in the soil makes up a huge difference.  So for instance, with Eleuthero, that’s kinda more the Siberian-Russia area, okay?  And then you have the Maca which is more of your Peruvian Ginseng.  You have your Ashwagandha which is more of your Indian Ginseng.  Your Panax Ginseng is more of the American Ginseng, American soil.  You have the Red Root Ginseng which is more your Korean Ginseng.  And then you have herbs like Tribulus which tend to have a better phyto signature growing in Bulgarian soils, so etc.  These herbs are really important.  You talk to any master herbalist, the quality of the soil is just as much to do with the quality of the herb.  So I like, you know, wild crafted, meaning you get guys that go out there and–and pick them up by their hands and–and you get really good quality and you don’t have like, you know, cheap herbs grown in countries where the soil isn’t good and, you know, you get bad soil so maybe there’s some heavy metals in the soil, like grown in industrial Chinese areas and then you get crappy herbs with a whole bunch of metals.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, that’s an important distinction you made.  If you’re concerned about that, you know, you can look for the organic.  You can look for the wild crafted certification and things like that, and always I mean, I go super geeky sometimes and contact the manufacturer or the company themselves and just say, “Hey, do you have heavy metal testing?”  Most of the time, I mean, generally speaking, if a company is reputable, they’re gonna have that testing available and they’re gonna have it done.  They’re not gonna have it on the shelves but I’m sure there’s some–there’s some shady adaptogens you can find in a little store on a corner somewhere.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, and you know, I always recommend companies that are third-party independently tested as well.  Because if a person’s–if a company is willing to go to that extreme that means they’re very, very confident because independent tests don’t lie and–but patients will either choose an adaptogenic herb or will use a blend, a combination blend, and I’m–I’m gonna have some in the works right now that I’m creating in my private line for my patients.

Evan Brand:  That’s exciting.  I can’t wait to get a batch.  You have to send me the–the first bottle that comes off the line.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely and I know you’ve worked on blends with on it.  What are some of the blends you’ve worked on?

Evan Brand:  Yeah, there’s one that I don’t even know if it’s gonna hit the shelf.  I’m–I’m still kind of anxiously waiting to see and one was, basically, it was a workout supplement for women but what I did was is I basically added some adaptogenic support to this workout supplement but also a little bit of blood sugar support, too.  Because I’m guessing that women, they’re gonna be busy, it’s a fast-paced woman who wants to work out right after–right after she, you know, gets out of the office, things like that.  So what I did is I created a combination of some blood sugar support like some 7-keto but then I also added in some Ashwagandha and some Rhodiola and then I added just a little bit of Cordyceps to give the more oxygen utilization side of things.  It was too big.  I ended just having so much fun combining the blend.  It was–it was too big to fit in 2 capsules.  It’d be like 10 capsules or something ridiculous so it would have had to end up becoming a powder and then of course, the whole issue becomes how are you gonna make it taste decent with Stevia and can you get true natural flavors and things like that.  So I basically came up with all the ingredients and then sent it over to Aubrey, the CEO, and said, “Hey, here’s what I got.”  And then he goes to his stepmom who’s a doctor and she verifies and tells me whether I know what I’m talking about or not, and then it would go onward to, you know, the flavoring department and things like that.  So that was probably my biggest and most fun project.  But then I just worked on some of the science, too, behind the other pages of–like the Alpha BRAIN for example, the Shroom TECH Sport, the Vira Tech, it was like a vitamin C and alpha-lipoic acid, immune-boosting type supplement, making sure that the science was there to support the use of lysine to balance out your arginine and things like that.  I did a–a lot of the behind the scenes stuff, but if I see that product hit the shelves with a–with a label, I’ll be sure to–to have it framed or something like that in a little special box.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s great, and I saw that you put out some affiliate codes for the–for the some of the Onnit products this morning.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, finally.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Daily now.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, I finally got a–a 10% code for people.  So if you wanna check that out, they can just go to notjustpaleo.com/supplements and then I have my little built-in code where you get 10% off because who likes to pay full price for supplements if you can get a discount, you know?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s great.  Very cool.  And you also mentioned Cordyceps, too.  And Cordyceps are a mushroom, they’re not necessarily an herb but they have adaptogenic qualities which is cool.  They really support the adrenals.  They help with glutathione production and they boost up DHEA which is that sex hormone precursor that tends to be depleted with chronic stress.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, I take Cordyceps every day.  Actually right now, I’m using Lucky’s Market.  They have just a store brand of organic mushroom blend.  I mean, it has everything.  You would love it.  It has Maitake, the Shitake, the Reishi, the Cordyceps.  I’ve been feeling so good.  I told Hannah my wife yesterday, I said, “Babe, I’ve been feeling so good lately because I’ve just added in a couple new combinations of nutrients to my stack, and I–I’ve been on fire.”  I mean, I’ve been really feeling good.  So if I mean, if someone’s questioning, “Do I really need this stuff?”  To me, it’s a 21st century pre-requisite to have a good stack on hand.  I mean, life is stressful.  You’re pulled in 50 directions.  You’ve gotta have some sort of solid basis of nutrients that are going in.  Of course, diet–that diet’s the first part.  But you know, assuming that you and I are following something like Dr. Justin and I, supplements or that thing that takes you to the next level and separates you from the competition.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, and I had a patient that, you know, asked me like, “Do I really need this?”  And I say, “Well, would you describe your life at all stressful?”  She’s like, “Yeah, I have this and–,” and even though it’s like this person wasn’t a full-time, you know, in the corporate world, they were a full-time mom which a lot of times is even more stressful and it’s like, unless you can tell me that your life is stress-free and is relatively easy, you’re gonna benefit with some level of adaptogenic support and/or nutrient support because when we’re stressed we also burn through B vitamins.  So I also add in some extra B vitamins and in my patients at some level we do organic acid testing and we’ll look at the B vitamins because they’ll burn through those suckers pretty fast with extra stress.  So some level I–I have an adaptogenic herb or two in my protocol.  I’ll have extra stress nutrients.  Nutrients that go down or should say drop with stress or we’ll be burned up with stress and then a mushroom is great.  I’m a huge fan or Reishi just because of the fact of its immune-modulating effect that’s called the Ten-Thousand-Year mushroom so it’s been around longer than any, you know, any supplements so to speak and you know, it’s amazing you hear some of the people in the pharmaceutical industry saying, “Well, some of these supplements or herbs that are untested.”  They’ve been around so long, some of them––it’s not even funny.  The question is, do we have good quality?  And again 95% are crap so we just have to know the right places to get it from.

Evan Brand:  Totally.  Yeah, I–I love you mentioned that.  I mean, some of these drugs will come out and they’ll be out on the market for 2 years and 1 rat study for 6 months or something just proves that it’s safe and then you have ancient Chinese wisdom or something that’s been written in books on hemp and papyrus–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  And that’s–that’s the real stuff that we’re really starting to respect and the science keeps continuing to back up the, you know, the evidence and the great value in these things so–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  Keep an open mind really.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, especially with stress.  I mean, you could–some of these scientific journals in these oriental countries, I mean, you have like Reishi being used as a first line therapy in cancer.  They’re using Cordyceps mushrooms for kidney transplants.  I mean, this is crazy, like–

Evan Brand:  Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  People in the United States have no idea.  Just go on to PubMed and punch some of these things in and you get lots of scientific journals in other countries that are researching this stuff and it just doesn’t make its way over here and it’s sad because, you know, medicine is pretty much co-opted by the drug industry so unless a drug company has billions of dollars behind something, it’s not really gonna get out to the everyday person just because it’s so expensive to bring something to market.  It’s hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars and if you can’t patent it, you’re not gonna get the money back.  So other countries they’re–they’re laws are more lax and it’s easier to bring things to market so it’s–it’s easier, and you know, the US–I think the US and I think New Zealand–it’s either New Zealand or Australia are the only 2 countries that actually market their drugs to the consumer on TV.

Evan Brand:  Oh, yeah.  Yeah, yeah.  I’ve–I’ve actually had some friends that have come from overseas and they see a drug commercial and are like, “Holy crap!  You can do that?”

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  Ask your doctor?  What do you mean, ask the doctor?  I thought the doctor was supposed to tell you?  Nope, you’re asking your doctor these days, you know.  So that’s just–that’s a whole another podcast.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Oh, yeah.  And it’s 70 to 80–the research is clear.  70-80 percent–70-80 percent of the time when the patient goes into the doctor and request the drug because they saw it on TV, they get the prescription.  It is a major effect on influence and the doctor.

Evan Brand:  That’s incredible.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So kinda tie in this back to stress, I’m a big fan of mushrooms.  Alright, huge, huge fan.  Helps with stress.  I like Cordyceps and I like Reishi and also if you’re dealing with any chronic immune stuff like cancer, Coriolus is another awesome mushroom typically using that in conjunction with Reishi works phenomenal.  Love it.

Evan Brand:  Sweet.  Well, I think–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  And I take these mushrooms individually, too.  Like I don’t use a lot of blends because I wanna get 3 grams of Reishi, I wanna get 4 grams of Reishi.  When you look at these blends, I mean, you’re lucky to get maybe 100 or 300 mg.

Evan Brand:  That’s a good point.  I probably am fairy dusting myself–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Uh-hmm.

Evan Brand:  With­ some of these.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I think it’s good to just have like just a straight Cordyceps, a straight Reishi, and just kinda mix it that way.  That can be a good way to do it.  Just mix the whole herb straight in.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.  I think we only got a couple minutes left but man, we could probably spend 3 hours on this topic.  This is–I didn’t realize how–how enjoyable both–both you and I would–would dig in this today.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I’m really happy we have this extra, you know, once or twice a month, we’re gonna be having these conversations and really diving in deep and it’s great because I get to bring my clinical experience working with thousands with patients and you get to bring your clinical experience working with lots of patients as well, and we get to kinda share it with the listeners which is awesome.

Evan Brand:  It’s a blast.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.  Well, anything else you wanna add today, Evan?

Evan Brand:  Not really.  If people are interested in, you know, they can check out my podcast as well.  Dr. Justin, he’s been on there, and I’m still getting emails like, “Wow!  That Dr. Justin guy kicks ass.”  So check out that episode if you need a good place to start but there’s plenty more where that came from, and you know, 99% of the stuff that Dr. Justin and I both put out is free.  So there is hope, stay confident, and stay positive.  Take baby steps in the right direction every day and I guarantee you’ll get massive results.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, and if you listen to these podcasts or read some of our blogs and posts and you feel like, “Well, I don’t know where to start.”  You know, this is kind of the best step, is to reach out to either me or Evan and we can kinda help guide you in the first couple of steps to take because you know, you’re always gonna do better with, you know, with a trail guide that’s already hiked the mountain a few times, that can help navigate all the pitfalls.

Evan Brand:  Definitely.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Well, Evan, hey, it was great talking today, man.

Evan Brand:  Yeah.  Likewise.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Have a good one!

Evan Brand: You, too.

 

 

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