Brad Kearns Podcast

This show was inspired by me hearing that throwaway line, “Everything in Moderation,” one too many times—particularly as it relates to our critical mission and obligation to fight a valiant battle against the many health-destructive cultural and marketing forces that we face in modern life.

Yes, I was hanging out with a group of childhood friends, talking up the nuances of my Carnivore Scores food rankings chart, and received the feedback that it’s indeed extreme for the average citizen to go looking for grass-fed liver or take organ supplements made with freeze-dried bovine testicle and so forth. Point accepted, but I think we have an unfortunate reflex to regress to the pathetic mean of today’s unhealthy, overstressed, overfat (Dr. Phil Maffetone contends 91% of the global population “overeat”) population. 

Everything in moderation is a good suggestion to avoid the extremes that some of us devoted health and fitness enthusiasts can traffic in, but it’s important to emphasize that we are absolutely and desperately obligated to pursue an extreme approach to health because we have the deck stacked against us. I’ll talk plenty about how industrial seed oils are pervasive in the food supply, including (shocker) the most elite and expensive restaurants and the hallowed halls of Whole Foods Market and hot buffet. 

This show examines both sides of the coin—being thoughtful and resolute to avoid overstress patterns as well as upping our game a bit, or a lot, to clean up our adverse dietary and lifestyle practices. I admit that I repeatedly err on the overstress side of the equation, as evidenced by recurring muscle soreness and minor injuries in the aftermath of my high intensity sprinting and jumping sessions. My interview with Jay Feldman, host of Energy Balance podcast, and my four-part presentation of reflections on the Energy Balance concept (coming soon), caused me to reflect on the potential for trouble when stacking an assortment of stress factors, most particularly combining fasting and/or carb restriction with high intensity workouts. 

We talk through some practical suggestions to improve dietary choices, how to optimize return on investment with workouts (reference my show with Dr. Doug McGuff) and avoid the endocrine disruptors in cosmetics, skin care, food containers, and household cleaners (listen to my show with Melanie Avalon here to hear more about that). You don’t have to break your back and add stress to your life in trying to be perfect or go to the potentially overly-stressful edges of biohacking or extreme athletic training, but let’s resolve to do the best we can to break free from the many unhealthy aspects of modern life (particularly the dopamine-stimulating instant gratification addictions that were detailed in my interviews with Dr. Robert Lustig and Dr. Anna Lembke) and strive to live a life of happiness, contentment, energy and vitality. 

Enjoy the show and send your questions and comments to podcast@bradventures.com


Everything in moderation…….is this really the best way? But let’s not overdo it either. [01:27]

Stress is cumulative. This is important to remember when you conclude that you have recovered from a workout. [05:51]

Brad reflects back on his health journey where he has been hardcore in many ways but notes there are times when research caused him to question what he was doing. [07:42]

During Brad’s triathlon career, he learned the best way to reach his potential. Many of the long-term extreme endurance athletes have heart problems. [12:11]

By learning to pay attention to your body, you may need to recalibrate your competitive goals. [15:13]

We have a tendency towards addiction to many things like alcohol, drugs, porn, and junk food.  We must watch out for our tendency to look for those dopamine triggers when we exercise, too. [18:22]

Everything in moderation has brought our society to the point of seeing that two-thirds of the US population is classified as overweight or obese, a serious health risk.  [27:11]

We have collectively deprioritized health and fitness in favor of consumerism and instant gratification. [32:39]

We have a unique opportunity to shape the world and the future of our planet with our pocket books. [36:23]

We still are inundated with industrial seed oils but high fructose corn syrup has been decreasing. [42:51]

Skin care products are loaded with harmful toxins. Household cleaners and plastics, like what touches your food or water bottles, are dangerous. [45:07]

We are experiencing a record decline in the average male testosterone levels since the 1980s. [48:40]

The electromagnetic fields that surround us are a cause for concern. [55:0



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B.Rad Podcast

Brad (00:01:27):
Greetings listeners. I hope you read the title before you pushed play. Everything in moderation is bullshit, but let’s not overdo it either. And this podcast is dedicated to all those of us who have uttered that wonderful phrase, “everything in moderation.” And typically we know what we mean here, but it’s an easily misinterpreted and misappropriated phrase. So I’m going to dive in and dissect it and beat it up a little bit. And hopefully we’ll walk away with some fresh perspective, especially about the second clause, but let’s not overdo it either. So I’m having a lot of reflection lately on the tendency for many of us, especially those devoted to health and fitness pursuits and especially competitive pursuits. Uh, the potential, the pension for taking things to excess where your health and fitness endeavors become too stressful. But at the same time, never succumbing to the tremendous momentum we have toward unhealthy lifestyle practices, accelerated aging and epidemic disease patterns.

Brad (00:02:45):
And we wanna stay away from following that pack and find the sweet spot, which is a challenge because we live in this age of indulgence, instant gratification, a lot of harmful influences, a lot of marketing forces, very strong marketing forces, pushing us in the direction of consumerism and instant gratification at the expense of long term health. So my reflections come as I continue to fight this battle, optimize my diet, my fitness practices, and my lifestyle for peak performance and longevity. But I’ve been so deep into this game for so long that it’s possible to get too far into this stuff and bring in the potential for extra stress, frustration, confusion, instead of backing up and hitting the big picture items and enjoying life and not worrying so much about further optimization, especially in the area of pursuing competitive goals and doing too much, rather than airing on the other side.

Brad (00:03:52):
And boy was that a battle in the triathlon scene when everyone was trying to become highly competent in three different sports, there was so many workout objectives to address, and there was a great quote that was bantered around. That’s better to be 10% undertrained than 2% overtrained. And that’s one to remember for the ages. And recently, as you know, from my four part series inspired by Jay Feldman energy balance ideas. And of course, the interview that I had with Jay the insight fasting turns on stress hormones that has really been haunting me since I heard it because it opens up that can of worms for me to rethink the foundation of my collective health and fitness practices, many of which would fall into that category that we call hormetic stressors or challenges to the body, to the cellular function that are, uh, designed to prompt an adaptive response.

Brad (00:04:54):
So we’re talking about fasting time, restricted feeding, carb restriction, like the ketogenic diet even the carnivore style diet can be carb restrictive unless you make efforts otherwise. And we also stack onto that as I talked about frequently in the four part series the advanced age that I’m at while I participate in peak competitive endeavors that are more, uh, commonly, uh, pursued by, uh, high school kids and college kids than we have things like cold exposure, heat exposure, and general, everyday life stress that are all piled into a category, a scoreboard, and we’re trying to optimize the stress/rest balance. So I think there are a lot of people I’m speaking to, especially in the endurance community or the extreme athletic community as seen in CrossFit or in the, the most devoted gym goers, not the people who wish they could go more and deserve to go more.

Brad (00:05:51):
But the people who are there day after day after day in the front row of the bootcamp class, and then the next day, the front row of the group cycling class and so forth. The most devoted goal oriented, driven motivated folks are in this category where it’s quite likely that the stressors are adding up and we need to figure out ways to get the maximum hormonal, psychological, physical benefits of leading healthy, active lifestyle with a minimal stress impact. Because as Jay Feldman reminded us, stress is cumulative, right? You, um, go out there, run a half marathon, get sore. You can’t walk for a few days, you get a black toenail, it comes off and you recover. You come back, you do another half marathon, eight months later, the same thing happens. You recover, you come back and then you wake up 15, 20 or 30 years later, and you are a beat up, hunched over runner with a bad hip or a bad knee or a stiff ankle.

Brad (00:06:58):
What have you? So the, the cumulative impact of stress is important to remember when you conclude that you have recovered from your most recent workout. So we have to zoom out, look at the big picture and like Olympic gold medal triathlete. Simon Whitfield says he’s coached today in retirement from the triathlon circuit. Today he’s coached by his 80 year old self. So he wants to do workouts and lifestyle practices that would make his 80 year old self look down and smile and give the thumbs up approval. So that is a, a great takeaway for all of us. We wanna be coached by our 80 year old self, as well as anyone else who’s coaching us today. Right. And hopefully those two entities are in agreement, right?

Brad (00:07:42):
So as I reflect on my health journey to date, I can think of a few occasions where being hardcore in many ways, for sure, admittedly, but I also can reflect on times where I had a toe or a foot or a leg outta the water. And I think it served me very well on each time. One was in the research and immersion into the ketogenic diet when Mark Sisson and I were working on The Keto Reset Diet. So for a pretty brief period, I was strict keto. I was charting my blood values for glucose and keto several times a day. I was tracking my meals. I was putting it into the macronutrient calculators, all in the name of book research. And luckily I would say that didn’t last long. And we now have a strong assertion across the board virtually across the board that keto is not necessary or even advisable to remain in over the long term. And so thank goodness for my penchant for dark chocolate <laugh> and other quote unquote indulgences during that time where maybe for six months I was strict keto. And then the chocolate was leaking into the picture more and more along with other things.

Brad (00:08:58):
And it wasn’t, um, a long duration, a period of time where I was deliberately restricting carbohydrates to that extreme while going out there and trying to perform, because I didn’t take any time off from my workout regimen. And that was definitely a challenge for me, even though a lot of people have shown that they can do extremely well as long term ketogenic athletes, even in the power and the explosive sports I’m thinking of Luis Villasenor, proprietor of keto gains. And he’s been a competitive power lifter and bodybuilder for almost two decades now eating a strict ketogenic diet. I can also reflect on, um, when I was captivated by the carnivore message presented by Dr. Paul Saldino, Dr. Sean Baker, and really interested in maximizing the nutrient density of my diet and embracing this concept that the consumption of the natural plant toxins found and the widely touted super healthy foods from the plant community could possibly be damaging, especially to sensitive people.

Brad (00:10:05):
And also weren’t the absolutely essential, necessary centerpiece of the diet that we’ve often been told. And so, uh, I looked at my salads differently, my stir fry vegetables and I drifted, or jogged in the direction of the carnivore ish movement. However, I never could go all the way into strict carnivore because I intuitively felt like it wasn’t necessary. I wasn’t a highly sensitive person to plant toxins. So I definitely had sufficient carbs in my realm at all times to where I didn’t have the problems that Sino describes as he went deep into, into very strict carnivore for, I believe two years. And he was getting some side effects because he too was trying to maintain an ambitious fitness regimen with surfing and jujitsu, and he was getting muscle cramps and weird symptoms like that. He started experimenting with fruit and honey, and that’s where he’s landed upon today, which I believe is a really strong position where it’s an animal based diet emphasizing the most nutrient dense foods on the planet.

Brad (00:11:10):
Without question, this would be the nose to tail animal strategy, especially getting in those organ meats and the true super foods of the planet. Everything is presented very, uh, simply and memorably on my carnivore scores, food rankings chart that you can download at bradkearns.com. So you can get some context for what I’m talking about. So it’s focusing on the nutritional powerhouses of the world and then being sure to obtain sufficient carbohydrates for hormonal health and athletic performance in recovery. The other major occasion example where I didn’t go all in and it saved my ass, I believe, was my triathlon career. So I was extremely motivated and devoted to, uh, pursuing a professional career in that sport and racing on the circuit and do the doing the absolute best I could. But I kept getting tired when I tried to escalate my training to the extreme levels that I thought was yeah, a necessary component of rising up the rankings, but I just couldn’t do it.

Brad (00:12:11):
I wasn’t resilient enough. I didn’t have the genetics, apparently, to compare with the volume and the overall, uh, workload absorbed by many of my peers on the pro circuit. And it was kind of frustrating at the time. I also had this inclination to pursue a more balanced life, in terms of other endeavors and hobbies away from, uh, living and breathing triathlon 24 7. And I think those things helped me to maintain a fresh perspective, take care of my body, perhaps better than some of my peers that were just so all in and had the engine power to do it where they pretty much buried themselves and had shorter careers or didn’t rise up to the level of their potential because they left a lot of their peak performance potential and training. And so, uh, for whatever fragility that I had genetically or processing energy or whatever, was the reason that I’d wake up feeling like crap while a peer might wake up from the same a hundred mile bike ride the previous day and feel fine and want to go another a hundred.

Brad (00:13:19):
I think it helped me perform close to my potential on the race course, and then also avoiding this disturbing, uh, occurrence these days where long time extreme endurance athletes are coming up with heart problems at an alarming rate. And I’ve talked about this on other shows before, but an endurance athlete has a unique training protocol where they are able to elevate their heart rate into the training zone and peg it at a high rate for hours on end day after day, week after week, year after year. And this is essentially a repeated inflammation and scarring of the very delicate heart muscle in a comparable manner to doing too many bicep curls and waking up the next day and your biceps are sore. And that’s actually what happens to the heart. You get the inflammation and scarring over time, and eventually it disturbs the electrical signaling of the heart.

Brad (00:14:20):
Also a very delicate process, right? And so you get a condition like atrial fibrillation, which is very, very common among the most extreme athletes who have had lengthy careers. So especially, when you’re combining three different sports where you can blast that heart for hours and then vary the skeletal load. So you can keep going after the marathon runner has gone home and is resting after even the best marathoners are only training for a couple hours a day. But with swimming where you can train for hours and hours every day, cycling hours and hours, and the high stress level of high impact running, boy, that’s a recipe for, uh, breakdown in some way. And I experienced sort of the hormonal or the endocrine breakdowns where I was just too tired and there was nothing wrong with my body. I wasn’t injured or anything.

Brad (00:15:13):
And so that kind of kept me in check. But when those people with big engines are opening up the throttle in the swimming pool and on the mountains and hills of the bike ride and on the trails running, um, it’s a tough one. And so while I’m deliberately and decisively very far away from that scene today, I no longer wish to participate in anything resembling an extreme endurance event. I do give my tip of the cap to, uh, a handful of my peers who are still going strong after decades. And so I believe these are the most genetically fortunate where they’re still feeling good. They haven’t broken down. Pete Kane comes to mind. He’s had like 35 triathlon seasons in a row where he has competitive race schedule and is out there competing in the age divisions, even as he pushes 60 years old, been doing it since he was 20 years old, absolutely astonishing.

Brad (00:16:08):
But I’ve, uh, recalibrated my competitive goals as, you know, as a long time listener toward the more explosive high intensity, uh, competitive endeavors, such as sprinting and high jumping. And of course I still am really fond of speed golf when you’re playing in an 18 hole tournament. That’s a run of about four and a half to five miles. So that definitely qualifies as an endurance event. But I’m not highly competent at blasting. Those five mile runs. So I’m more of a golfer rather than a long distance runner, picking up a club and participating in speed golf. Funny that I should say that cuz when I first started speed golfing way back when, I was one of the faster guys cuz I was coming right off a career as a pro triathlete and I was a decent player, but now I’m one of the slower guys and just trying to, trying to get my game in shape and move faster on the course, uh, for those golf enthusiasts, I’ll have, you know, I just switched to one handed putting, so it’s been a tremendous athletic challenge and something to really focus on, but you play much, much faster because you don’t have to put your bag down, run onto the green, get your ball, put it in the hole and then run off the green, pick up your bag and proceed to the next tee.

Brad (00:17:24):
So now I have the bag, a little tiny bag, of course, for speed golfers the bag in one hand and stroking that putt with the other hand. And boy, is it fun to pick up a new challenge, feel that frustration, uh, then start to feel like you got it a little bit, you’re making breakthroughs and that’s what sports is all about is pursuing new challenges and just trying to, trying to get better and improve. So, even with my recalibration toward high intensity exercise and much shorter duration, competitive goals, like the 400 meters, which lasts a minute, hopefully no more than that or the high jump, which lasts about four or five seconds rather than my bread and butter of the old days, which were triathlon races lasting from two hours to six hours to nine hours, pretty funny, but I still battle against possible overstress overtraining patterns and it comes in the form of persistent muscle soreness.

Brad (00:18:22):
So it’s like this, uh, indicator, whatever great workout I did, one or two days prior when I felt wonderful and everything was great. Uh, but it was too much for my body a little bit and here comes another minor injury or persistent muscle soreness. So I’m really working hard on raining that in and trying to discover, um, the sweet spot. And I have to acknowledge with my speed golf endeavors, my sprinting workouts and my high jump workouts, that sweet spot is probably a little bit, a few steps back from what I typically do. It’s less than what I like to do. So hmmm, what’s going on here and I’m referencing my interview with, uh, Dr. Lembke, author of Dopamine Nation, talking about our penchant for addiction and how we’re wired toward that instant gratification. And, fortunately I can assert that I’m not addicted to the major societal concerns here, like alcohol, drugs, prescription drugs, pornography, instant gratification, junk food.

Brad (00:19:34):
Fortunately those things are not in the picture, but what about knowing better and continuing to perform high intensity workouts that are overly stressful are not aligned with my competitive goals and somehow needing to look at this, examine this blind spot and ask myself whether I have, uh, that addictive tendency to hit those dopamine triggers, where I can get the instant gratification from doing some extra, uh, during the workout and then having come back to bite me. So that is a, uh, that is a current needs to improve area. So I’m trying to experience less muscle soreness and post workout, uh, fatigue or a minor injury. Um, reflecting on my interview with Dr. Doug McGuff and his touted big five workout where he cites, uh, extensive scientific research validating this idea that it takes varying little time to put your body under resistance load, to achieve ongoing strength gains.

Brad (00:20:38):
And he prescribes this template of doing a single set to failure in five different compound exercises on machines in the gym the lap pull down, the chest press, the overhead press, the seated row, and the leg press. I can’t believe I’ve memorized them now. That’s great. But going in there and going with very slow cadence so that your, uh, time under tension on the muscle is prolonged and just doing one set, resting a little bit, doing one set of the next one set of the next. And if that’s all you do in a week, that is your optimal, not minimal, but that’s your optimal frequency for increasing strength. In other words, if you were to go and do that super simple workout, that doesn’t really tax you, you feel fine. Sometimes I’m driving by the gym and I’m like, oh, I haven’t done a big five in a while and I’ll just pull in.

Brad (00:21:34):
<laugh> punch my card. Usually the app doesn’t work. So I have to get the little tag again that takes longer than my workout. Sometimes. Anyway, I’ll go in there, go upstairs, hit the five machines and be on my way in about 12 minutes. It’s a ridiculous notion to think that this is my optimal progression for increasing strength, but it’s highly validated by science as is the idea that if one were to be extra ambitious and go in there and do the workout twice a week instead of once a week, right. Make sense more is better, make more progress. But, the research is clear that that frequency is too much. That’s when you start to get the crunchy shoulder or the, uh, ongoing repeated soreness or lack of progress with peak performance markers, like the ability to add an extra plate and keep your reps, uh, still around, uh, the, the sweet spot of 12.

Brad (00:22:32):
So you wanna do, um, one set to failure, but choosing a weight that allows you to perform somewhere around 12 reps. The same thing goes for my sprint workout or my high jump workout. I know from information from world class athletes that a good jumper, a world class, uh, high jumper has about a dozen jumps in their legs at any one session or competition. And after that, uh, that that’s all you need to do to stimulate progress. And it’s very likely that technique will falter if you continue past a dozen or so, that’s a general observation and I’m not an expert, but I’ve received that feedback enough to where it makes sense. And it probably is resonating with most of the world class jumpers out there. So why is this master’s athlete, Brad Kearns going and doing as many as 20, this is full approach, full effort, jump at 20 at a single workout.

Brad (00:23:34):
Well, it goes when I get to 12 or 13, I’m not tired, right? I’m endurance athlete. I can handle more. Maybe I’m not jumping over a bar that’s seven and a half feet in the air. So I can do more because my bar’s a little lower. But again, the, the stress and the, uh, training load is, is relative to the fitness level of the individual such that me jumping over a five foot bar is just as challenging as a world class athlete jumping over a seven foot bar. And so when I extend my workout out from 12 full length approaches to 20, because I’m frustrated and I wanna get my technique, right. And the 17th one was terrible. So I wanna go to, to the 18th one and to leave on a good note. Those are the things that are coming back to bite me later.

Brad (00:24:19):
So if you’re listening and you’re possibly in that category of an extreme performer and a hard driver, this is a strong admonition to dial it back a little bit and honor a kinder, gentler approach to even your most ambitious competitive goals. So taking those high jump approaches down from 20 to 12 or appreciating Dr. McGuff very astute and strong position that a single workout per week is sufficient to build strength. Now, we have to make that clarification as Dr. McGuff does very well, that this is strictly to strengthen the muscle so that you can, for example, chest press a greater weight. And so this should be, uh, seen independently from one’s competitive goals in, in sports and fitness endeavors. So if you’re trying to become a better tennis player or a better football player, you’re gonna need a variety of skill training specific to those athletic goals.

Brad (00:25:21):
But if we can isolate the objective of getting stronger and then perform our skill training, where we’re working mostly on skills, rather than trying to blend an effort to get stronger while we’re doing skill training, then arguably both fitness objectives, uh, can succeed further because you’re sort of separating them. In other words, when I’m high jumping, I am mostly trying to improve my technique, my timing, my ability to run the curve and, uh, take off properly, learn how to travel through the air, optimally, all that kind of stuff. But I shouldn’t be trying to get my legs stronger during a high jump workout, for example, by doing 20 reps instead of twelves. So if I can focus on skill development, same with a basketball player, going into the gym and doing dribbling drills and shooting drills and defensive sliding drills, uh, but has already done, uh, the big five workout on a different day where they’re trying to get a stronger upper body, stronger lower body, so they can be a more athletic specimen on the court.

Brad (00:26:27):
Uh, it’s a very compelling premise that seems to, uh, represent, I believe a, a fitness breakthrough in how we train competitive athletes in the future, such that the workouts are crisp, honoring, uh, good technique throughout the workout and not indulging this struggle and suffer, uh, type of ethos that we’ve had for so many decades where, uh, the football team is gonna get good because the workouts are so exhausting during summer hell week and their hands are on their knees. It’s probably better for them to work on how to cut and run their past patterns or how to, uh, learn their blocking techniques with crispness and lack of fatigue. And then they can get stronger with devoted sessions in the weight room. You get what I’m saying here?

Brad (00:27:11):
Okay. So let’s bring it back to the focus of the show here which is trying to find that sweet spot where we get maximum fitness and health benefits with minimizing the potential for stress and breakdown. And it’s all about doing your best in every area. That, that is interesting, that you care about your diet, your exercise, your sleep, your stress management, and being very, very diligent to avoid the lures and the temptations and the spirals downward that we can succumb to if we don’t have that discipline and that focus. Okay. So that was a carefully worded statement about doing your best and being diligent as heck against the things that can take us down. And this is what counters, this BS concept of everything in moderation in today’s world where we are represented with the sickest and fattest population in the history of humanity, that is the United States of America citizenry, where we have two thirds of adults are classified as overweight or obese. In fact, a quarter of the adult population of America is classified as obese with that’s this serious health risk category, with excess body fat and all the metabolic factors that come with it. .

Brad (00:28:38):
In Dr. Phil Maffetone’s book, The Overfat Pandemic, he identifies that 91% of the global population might be classified as over fat. And he uses that term to describe people that might not be carrying a lot of excess body fat, but they have an excess of the particularly health destructive, visceral fat. That’s the collection of fat in the abdomen area and surrounding the organs. This is highly inflammatory interferes with a hormone function, uh, especially the conversion of testosterone into estrogen. And it’s a really bad deal. So if you see skinny people walking around, but they have a gut that would be someone in the, uh, the over fat category that might not be in the BMI excess overweight slash obese category. So we’re really talking about, um, all of us being victims to the consumerism, the indulgences, the distractions, and the marketing machine.

Brad (00:29:34):
That’s pushing us away from, uh, our ancestral patterns and our genetic expectations for health. And that’s what this movement is all about is recapturing some of the things that make us human and make us thrive. So please tell me where moderation comes into the picture in this context. Just to escape from disaster, I’m arguing that we need an extreme and highly devoted focus and commitment to health, fitness, and longevity and disease prevention. I was doing a rant hanging around with my childhood friends. We gather frequently, and I was talking about, uh, the content of the Carnivore Scores, Food Rankings Chart. Maybe I even brought one and flashed it at a social gathering. I don’t know. But you know, talking about how the, the most nutrient dense foods on the planet are things like liver and salmon eggs and oysters, pastured eggs, oily cold water, fish, grass fed steak, blah, blah, blah, going on and on.

Brad (00:30:37):
And, one of my friends, unfortunately, uh, got right into the bullseye and he said, look, BK. That’s all good. And, well, I don’t think many people are gonna eat that liver. It’s so gross, even if it is the most nutritious food. And what we’re talking about here really is everything in moderation. And you might as well have had the hurricane horns sound across the city. Cuz that one lit me up. I’m like, excuse me. And of course we know what he’s talking about and that most people aren’t gonna be inclined or maybe don’t need to go to that great extreme, like we see with Liver King, the most extreme of all living ancestral humans, and you can go find him on Instagram, doing extreme workouts, extreme dietary practices. And uh, if that’s not your game and you want to revert over to an everything in moderation comment, we have to very carefully examine the context of that statement so that it does not become a cop out.

Brad (00:31:42):
And so I pounced on my buddy, who’s a very, very successful prominent public figure and a driven lifelong entrepreneur. And I said, look, man, that statement counters, everything that you stand for in your entire life and the entire path of your existence has been about intense competition and an unsatiable, insatiable quest for challenge and victory and optimization, especially in the career realm, but also as an athlete and all the things that he loves to compete in. He’s like a Michael Jordan, he wants to beat you at checkers. You know? So, um, how is it? I wonder that peak performers in many areas of life have a tendency to sag when it comes to the desire to optimize diet and eliminate these poisonous foods that are being pushed upon us, uh, on the billboards and on the grocery store shelves, not to mention things like sleep, drifting away from optimal sleep in favor of, uh, streaming, digital entertainment or whatever.

Brad (00:32:39):
And then in many cases, wake up the next morning and kick royal ass to the level that they’re in that, uh, you know, vaunted category, most successful, highest rewarded humans in the economy. And it’s clear that we have collectively deprioritized health and fitness in favor of consumerism and instant gratification. And so the rewards of quote unquote, working hard are generally limited to kind of the, the economic aspects of working hard, uh, rather than opening up the lens and seeing this as a big picture. And this is kind of reminded me of my former podcast guest, Dr. Robert Lustig, who wrote the brilliant book, The Hacking of the American Mind. And he describes how these dopa pleasure seeking behaviors has hijacked the human brain. And it has come at the expense of happiness, fulfillment and contentment, which comes from persevering through difficult challenges in areas that you have a passion for.

Brad (00:33:42):
And so if you think about the difference between hitting a button and having Door Dash come and deliver some processed food, most likely laden with industrial seed oils, the very worst thing that you can eat, doesn’t matter what kind of food you’re ordering or what kind of restaurant, even the highest quality, most expensive restaurants routinely use the worst oils to prepare their very expensive meals. The difference between that and taking a Saturday morning, leaving your phone behind or leaving it in your pocket, walking a couple miles to the farmer’s market with your canvas bag, speaking to the local farmers and asking them about their berry harvest or their pasture raised chickens or the, even the, the fishermen come, uh, with the wild caught local fish, at a great Farmer’s Market. And you form relationships with them. You learn more, you fill up your bags, you walk home and you prepare a home cooked meal with family, friends, loved ones.

Brad (00:34:39):
The difference between that and clicking the button is profound, and you can see the inherent value and the contentment and satisfaction that you might get from plan B, even though it took, uh, many more hours than clicking the button and returning to your streaming entertainment or what have you. Uh, but I think in The Hacking of the American Mind, Dr. Lustig’s arguing that the forces are so powerful pushing us in these areas of the, the dopa pleasures, social media, mobile devices, alcohol, street, drugs, prescription drugs, pornography, video games, and on and on excessive exercise, giving that exercise high over and over at the expense of your long term fitness progress and health. These are the things that are in the way and are preventing us from those pursuits that afford this deep, fulfillment, contentment, happiness of a rich and meaningful and healthy and vibrant and energetic life.

Brad (00:35:40):
So that is my counter to someone opening their mouth and saying everything at moderation at the wrong time. <laugh> All right. And of, uh, credit to my friend, he said, fair point fair point, because, you know, I hit him in the bullseye. This is not a moderation person. So why would you even think about espousing that ideal in any area of life ever? Okay. So hopefully it’s clear that we have an obligation to do our best in pursuit of that rich, meaningful, satisfying life, and without overdoing it, which is a common risk factor in a certain narrow segment of the population.

Brad (00:36:23):
And so let’s get some, logistics, some nitty gritty marching orders in a few different areas here to piggyback the show after my initial rant. When it comes to food, we have a unique opportunity to shape the world and the future of our planet with our pocket books. So we have to vote and we have to support the most sustainable and conscientious manufacturers and retailers of food. Here it comes a huge plug for Butcher Box. Why not put a commercial in the middle of the show? Oh my gosh, what an incredible find. And thank you, Dave Kobrine. A couple of years ago, I opened up his freezer. I’m like, what’s all this stuff. He goes, oh, Butcher Box. Ever heard of it? Nope. But in five minutes I was a member and I’ve been a devoted monthly member since then. It makes things so easy and automatic because you’re getting a big shipment of food. Of course you design how big that box is that comes every month. And you can even change the delivery dates if you’re going out of town or you’re getting backed up, but everything’s customizable, but you have the ability now to get the very highest quality meats in every category, organic free range poultry, humanely, raised pork, the best grass fed beef and wild caught seafood, and a bunch of other stuff.

Brad (00:37:43):
They keep adding different options to their menu. You can pick and choose and create a custom box delivered right to your door every month or whenever you want. And it’s been a huge game changer for me, as they say, uh, because it’s so much easier than driving around town and remembering to go to this store, cuz they have great fish and that store has a, a more affordable grass fed beef. And some of that stuff is so expensive. I’m too scared to cook it. I have a post on my Instagram recently or my son found a, a Wagu steak in his Japanese market in Los Angeles that was $234. <laugh> for a two pound steak. I mean, even if someone gave it to me, I’d be too scared to cook it. I don’t wanna ruin a $234 steak and the Butcher Box steak, and the Butcher Box subscription model without having to need a retailer to, uh, often double the price of things.

Brad (00:38:35):
It’s very, very affordable. So please check out ButcherBox.com/brad Kearns. And if you hit that link, you get an incredible bonus offer. I mean, it’s a major generous way to get people to start their subscription. When it comes to dark chocolate, please listen to my show with gourmet chocolate maker, Shawn Askinosie of Askinosie chocolate in St. Louis, Missouri. And he will set you straight because he goes into detail about the problems in the chocolate trade, especially with commodity products where much of the inexpensive chocolate or the mass produced major brand chocolate that you see on the shelves today comes from child slave labor, essentially child slave labor in very poorly regulated labor regulations in the African nations that have produced a high amount of the world’s chocolate. So Shawn contends that if you are purchasing a bar at that normal and familiar price point, when you go and buy a Hershey bar or even some of the more fancy looking labels such as the selection of dark chocolate, you might find at a typical Whole Foods market.

Brad (00:39:52):
A lot of that is still coming from commodity raw materials. And if the price is down in the affordable region of three or four bucks for a two or three ounce bar, you can be sure according to Shawn, that you are supporting child slave labor in Africa. So I know we don’t all have the time and energy to be completely woke in every area of life and make optimal purchasing decisions and not invest in any companies that do business in South Africa. Remember that in the old days they wanted to, um, support the apartheid boycot and it turns out like every company does some form of business in South Africa. This is back in the eighties. I just remember that admonition when we’re talking about investing in stocks anyway, back to the dark chocolate. So you have the obligation as a consumer on the planet to source bean to bar bean dash two dash bar.

Brad (00:40:51):
That’s what it says on the label. And that’s the thing that gives you confidence and comfort that this chocolate maker knows where their beans came from and roasted and processed the beans themselves in house. So they started with beans shipped in the Guinea sack from, uh, equatorial nations that have, uh, sustainable labor practices, fair labor practices. And they knew that. And therefore, by ensuring that the farmer gets a fair wage, uh, they have to charge vastly more for a chocolate bar. And so I pay $11, $12, $9, $14 for bars that are two or three ounces, the same size as you might find at a mass market offering, um, for dark chocolate where they’re two or three or $4. Uh, but that’ll set you straight, even if you’re on a budget. I mean, come on. Is there any reason that you’ll ever again buy a commodity chocolate bar please don’t and the other way to determine after looking for the bean to bar designation, you can look on the ingredient list and the first ingredient should be cacao beans.

Brad (00:41:56):
Uh, that implies that the bar was made in house. If it’s anything else you’ll see, uh, Coco amass chocolate, dark chocolate, chocolate liqueur. Those designations as the first ingredient, that means they started with a commodity product, like a barrel of already melted chocolate. They poured it in and then cut some bars out of it, right? And of course I’m not being precisely accurate. I’d rather have you listen to the show with Shawn, but that’s the main takeaway is look to pay a fair price. I E a much higher price than you’re used to. And look for those designations on the bar and send an email off to the manufacturer. If you find a bar in the store, you like it inquire about their, uh, their sourcing and be a woke consumer. Look, it’s up to us because big food conglomerates have proven again and again, they don’t give a crap about your health.

Brad (00:42:51):
Dr. Cate, her of the most spicy quotes, you can find said that this, uh, transition over from saturated fat to polyunsaturated fat, that happened in the sixties and seventies. When we were all told by the US government to switch from butter over to much more healthy Margarine. She said, it’s been one big giant experiment to see how many people will die from a processed foods diet. And this is not, this widespread use of refined high polyunsaturated industrial seed oils. It is not for improving taste or anything like that because they don’t have any taste it’s simply to save money, despite overwhelming evidence that they have a direct implication in all manner of disease and dysfunction and are widely touted. Now, widely regarded as the single worst thing that you can put into your body, but they’re still prevalent all over the food supply.

Brad (00:43:44):
Even at Whole Foods market, they have can oil in their hot prepared foods on the buffet and in a variety of ingredients on all of their shelves. So shame on them for standing up and bragging that they are the ultimate destination for the healthiest foods. Maybe things will change when Amazon comes in and maybe some new scientists or whatever their thinking is that they, uh, are justifying the use of these toxic products. Maybe that’ll change in the next year or two. It has changed nicely for high fructose corn syrup, because that really got a bad rap. It started making headlined news stories, maybe I don’t know, decade ago or two decades ago, and even te big soda manufacturers and the main sources of high fructose corn syrup, switched back over to, uh, regular sugar, which is the lesser of two evils. Let’s not kid ourselves, but it’s been interesting to see the dynamics and the cultural forces and the economic forces.

Brad (00:44:43):
For example, Walmart is now the world’s leading provider of organic produce, and I guarantee you, with the business practices that they have been criticized for since their inception, um, it’s not because they care about their consumer’s exposure to pesticides. It’s because there’s a profit opportunity, thanks to consumers waking up and demanding organic food.

Brad (00:45:07):
Okay. So now I think we should move on a little bit since I already did a commercial for Butcher Box, I should do, I should do another commercial within the show for my association, my recent association with Beauty Counter and how they do the legwork for you to screen all skincare and cosmetic products to be free from toxins and poisons. And that is a new revelation to me. Please listen to my show with Melanie Avalon, beauty counter queen and expert on these topics of all the nasty stuff that’s found in mainstream skincare products and what you put on your skin is super, super important.

Brad (00:45:47):
So in terms of priorities, oh yes, we have what we put into our mouths and then right up there is what we’re putting on our skin, because of course that’s going into our bloodstream as well. I’m not a heavy user of cosmetics now. I’m very fond of using skincare daily on my face to, um, you know, keep the, keep the skin working for however many years I need it. Let’s see 16, 57, 63, 65 more years until I turn 123, which is my goal. So I’m gonna be a, a heavy consumer for years to come. And I don’t wanna have that toxic load. The lead in lipstick was one of the main examples that I remember from Melanie’s show, uh, but it’s super important to scrutinize what you’re putting onto your skin. Another big area is plastics touching your food. And so plastics are a bad deal, just overall in the environment.

Brad (00:46:46):
But especially if you’re drinking from a plastic water bottle or using plastic Tupperware or buying takeout, and it’s in styrofoam or plastic, we want to minimize our exposure to food and drink, uh, with plastic touching. So, uh, the recommendation to buy the glass bottles of mineral water is highly appreciated. I did that for a long time, and then I got so, uh, disturbed by how much glass I was recycling and filling up an entire barrel of San Pellegrino, delivered to my local big box store all the way from Italy. And I was like, man, this is crazy. Um, and I, I switched over to just using the water filter under the sink, but I’ve recently switched back inspired by Ben Greenfield. This is a couple years ago where he was asked to give a top 10 list of health practices and reaching up to that top 10 list.

Brad (00:47:41):
I mean, that’s, you know, pretty important stuff. He said, drink mineral water out of the glass. And he was referencing the concern with drinking outta plastic and also the lack of minerals in our diet because of nutrient depleted soil. So it’s a great source of minerals when you can buy that natural water. And so I’m, I’m back in the recycling mode, I guess it could be greener. And, um, if someone were to bottle mineral water closer to me, then Italy <laugh> okay. I’m open. Anyway. what, so we’re talking about putting on our skin and we also have household cleaners because we come in plenty contact with things that we clean our surfaces with, and also, uh, the detergent that we put into our clothes, because then it’s gonna be on our clothes. And so you wanna find those alternative brands that represent a commitment to a, a cleaner, less toxic product.

Brad (00:48:40):
Oh, you’re so busy. I’m sorry. You don’t have time to focus on this. Sorry about that. Sorry. Sorry. How about this? We are experiencing a record decline in the average male testosterone level at a rate of around 1% per year, since the 1980s. I’m not talking about the age related decline in the individual, right? A 20 year old has testosterone here. A 40 year old has a little lower, a 60 year old when they’re, when they’re 60, they have it lower. I’m talking about the average 27 year old from the eighties to today is drastically reduced in serum testosterone level. And this is from research around the world. More than one study. There’s study from Denmark, a study from Japan, a study from America. And this is believed to be many causes. One of ’em might be this high tech world where, uh, today’s male is now working with their mobile device or playing a video game rather than sleeping.

Brad (00:49:41):
But it’s also believed to be driven by the increase in endocrine disruptors, environmental estrogen compounds in the environment. There’s an expert named Dr. Anthony Jay. You can find him on different podcasts and he wrote the book Estrogeneration. He’s talking about how you can protect yourself better. And one is, if something smells fresh and has a scent, a pleasant scent, like the little Christmas tree you buy and hang on your car rear view mirror, or you get your shirt out of the laundry, and it has a nice fresh scent from using Tide or what have you, uh, this has most likely toxic chemicals and endocrine disruptors on your wonderful, fresh smelling shirt. So we want to get away from this concept, that scents are something to, uh, to, to look for, uh, besides natural scents.. All right. So, unless otherwise proudly proclaimed, your cleaning product skincare product probably is littered with toxins.

Brad (00:50:47):
So you can go look for a brand like Mrs. Myers Clean Day or Dr. Bronner’s fantastic Castile soap, which, uh, I use for the body beak and also use as a household cleaner and find these eco-friendly brands and, and really shop carefully. I wouldn’t even trust this might be conspiracy theory, but I don’t even trust the corporate giant brands when they come out with a cleaner more friendly product. It, it just, it just turns my stomach to look at Tide natural or whatever, and that’s not even an actual example. Uh, but I’m saying I’m always looking toward kind of the, uh, the mom and pop feel of the brand. Uh, I’m thinking of Dr. Bronner where you can send them an email, you can ask them what’s in there. Can I brush my teeth with your Castile soap?

Brad (00:51:35):
Yes, you can. And boy, my teeth feel great. I brush my teeth about once a month, cuz it’s kind of a strong, uh, taste, but boy, your teeth really get clean <laugh> Anyway. yeah, look past the corporate conglomerates that are so profit driven and so far disconnected from the reality of problems with human health. They probably never heard of Anthony Jay they probably never called him in to say, Hey, how can we make our laundry detergent, uh, chemical free and less endocrine disrupting cuz they don’t give a crap. And shame on brands like Paul Newman and the celebrity lending his name and likeness to an operation that would sell a product called red wine, olive oil and vinegar dressing, which I used for many years. It was delicious with smiling Paul on the front and oh yes, all profits go to charity.

Brad (00:52:26):
Isn’t that wonderful? And it is wonderful that his summer camp is funded by, uh, this growing, uh, consumer product. But then if you turn over the label, you see that it’s made with not olive oil, yet, but before that, on the ingredient list, uh, canola and, or uh, another vegetable oil, I haven’t bought it in a while. I forgot, but I was so, uh, amused to see that and or which basically conveys most likely that when they’re doing the next production run, they are buying whatever’s available from the commodity market. So they’re buying a big barrel of safflower oil this time. And they’re not even telling you it’s an and or they don’t even promise really what’s in there. Um, and then olive oil comes later down the ingredient list. So it’s not a lie on the front label to say red wine, olive oil and vinegar dressing.

Brad (00:53:18):
But if there’s more canola oil than olive oil, it is kind of a lie and it’s a, a huge deception. I can’t even believe it’s legal and I can’t even believe Paul Newman would still have his face on there, if he found out. Does he care? Does he give a crap that he’s selling red wine, olive oil and vinegar dressing made with canola oil. Same with Ben and Jerry, man. What’s up, what’s up, boys? You hippie trippy guys from Vermont. They’re so cool and hip and have counterculture Grateful, Dead inspired decorations on your stores and on your cartons. But many of those, uh, flavors are made with refined industrial seed oils in the Ben and Jerry pint. And they’re bragging outta the other side of their mouth that none of our stuff have, uh, recompetent bovine growth hormone in there. We use the, the best cows, these happy cows from Vermont that, that eat the nice grass.

Brad (00:54:13):
And then let me dump some seed oil as a preservative or way to stabilize rather than using something that’s more expensive, but that would do the same thing. Uh, so shame on them. I’m sure they sold out years or decades ago. Um, and all we can do here. Well, we can do a lot of things. We can write a letter to our Senator or the Vermont Senator and say, Hey, um, did you know your proud, state’s product has refined industrial seed oils in there? Don’t think that’s gonna work too much, but what we can do is vote with our pocketbook and, and get this stuff out of there and have it dwindle away in the next generation, especially if you’re a parent and you have kids. Do you want your kid reaching for, uh, hippie trippy smiling guys from Vermont pedaling ice cream with toxic product toxic ingredients in there?

Brad (00:55:01):
How about the, the whole story with, uh, electromagnetic fields? Um, the artificial EMFs that come from a wifi from mobile devices, uh, the widespread institution of the 5g cellular network, which the deep enthusiasts are very, very concerned about. Um, but if you go into an AT &T wireless store and upgrade your phone and ask them, well, what about this 5g? And they’ll say, oh, there’s no problem there. It’s been tested as safe. So I’m gonna trust these people that are really devoted and doing great work outside of the industrial complex and to point out the risks and dangers. Um, Dr. Mercola, very popular internet resource for many years, writes a lot of spicy articles, uh, about all the assault on human health that we, we have to be careful about. And when you meet him at a public event and ask, if you can take a selfie with him, your brush with celebrity, he will very happily comply, but he’ll ask you to put your phone in airplane mode because he doesn’t want even that brief exposure to your cellular and your wifi when your phone is on same with the Liver King, the most ancestral living human you could find when you go visit his home, uh, outside of Houston area,

Brad (00:56:23):
there are no cell phones allowed in the home, politely, respectfully, uh, here’s a bowl, it’s actually a fair day cage. You know what that is? It’s a, it’s a, um, a special, uh, constructed container that protects you from the emissions of the devices inside. And so you can, uh, install a Fairday cage around your, uh, your, your power meter on the side of your house. You can put a Fairday cage around your bed. And when you go into his home, you are politely asked to drop your phone into the, into the, into the bowl by the front entrance. You can get it when you leave, and if you need to work on your computer, they have all kinds of really long, ethernet cords cables extended all over the place. So you can grab one plug in and then go work wherever you want, but what a credit to a, a family that’s really committed to that extent.

Brad (00:57:16):
And you know what, it’s not that big of a difference to ethernet plug in rather than rely on wifi. And I’ve got in the habit of doing that because when I do my podcast, I want the most reliable internet connection. So right now, I have the plug in and no wifi. So my brain is working really well. That’s how I can rant so hard. And I certainly don’t wanna come off as antiestablishment, anti-government right. We’re all doing the best we can in society. And the major players are as well, and they just take a long time to move. But we should remember, um, that the us government has issued guidance and due time. Um, but we wanna be ahead of the curve here because, uh, smoking was, uh, certainly okay until 1964. Seatbelt. I lost a bet here recently. I couldn’t believe it.

Brad (00:58:07):
Um, like when did the seatbelt law come about? And I thought it was way back when, um, early in my lifetime, it was not until 1986, that seat belts became a law. I believe this is California law. So you could finally get an actual ticket for not using a seat belt, but not until 1986, shocking. And also, uh, a wonderful tidbit from one of the Jay Feldman, Mike Fave energy balance podcast episodes, uh, was talking about this concept of a hormetic stressor, which we banter about now of how wonderful it is for fasting and cold exposure in sauna. Do you know where the concept arose was the nuclear and chemical industries trying to pass off their extreme health hazards as beneficial in small doses? So if you live near a bomb testing site, you know what it was okay, you’re getting a little bit of radiation or your water supply is a little bit polluted with toxins, and they tried to pass that off as hormetic stressors, where as the story goes, your body is exposed to a toxin and mounts a defense response that serves to fine tune your immune function.

Brad (00:59:23):
And I’ve also, uh, read this in the context of a dosage of refined industrial seed oil. So if you order up French fries once a month and get that dose of toxins, you Mount, uh, a very aggressive antioxidant anti-inflammatory defense response and thereby in theory, fine tune your antioxidant defense systems. So it sounds lovely in practice as a cop out for, uh, going and ordering fries once a month. Uh, but we have to also remember, and, uh, Jay reminded us in that, in that program that, uh, stress is cumulative. So if you’re having 12 orders of French fries every year, once a month to keep your antioxidant defense systems finally tuned, let’s talk in 20 years, that’s, um, you know, a cumulative dose of something that you don’t really need to eat in the first place. Okay.

Brad (01:00:19):
I know that was a lot and I came on heavy handed and I get me a stirred up at the emotional level because I care so much. I want you to walk the healthy path and go ahead, uh, say everything in moderation and then dare me to jump all over that concept, but I hope you take it in good spirit and definitely, just do the best you can within the context of the time resources, energy you have available. But Hey, as Mia Moore likes to say, we only have one life. So we might as well do our best and, you know, fight a battle if necessary, to not succumb to the smiling celebrity salad dressing and the cool hippie ice cream guys that are peddling us poison as well as the other examples mentioned, avoiding the temptations that Dr. Lustig recites in The Hacking of the American Mind. And then finally, not being our own worst enemy by overdoing it to the extent that we accumulate too many stressors and we don’t get the desire, the intended benefits of our workouts. Okay. Thanks for listening. Let me know what you think podcast@bradventures.com. And please share this show with someone you care about. I’ll share it with my childhood friend mentioned and we’ll all get a good laugh out of it. I promise.

Brad (01:01:40):
Thank you for listening to the show. I love sharing the experience with you and greatly appreciate your support. Please. Email podcast,@Brad ventures.com with feedback, suggestions, and questions for the Q and A shows. Subscribe to our email list@bradkerns.com for a weekly blast about the published episodes and a wonderful bimonthly newsletter edition with informative articles and practical tips for all aspects of healthy living. You can also download several awesome free eBooks when you subscribe to the email list. And if you could go to the trouble to leave a five or five star review with apple podcasts or wherever else, you listen to the shows that would be super, incredibly awesome. It helps raise the profile of the B.rad podcast and attract new listeners. And did you know that you can share a show with a friend or loved one by just hitting a few buttons in your player and firing off a text message? My awesome podcast player called Overcast allows you to actually record a sound bite excerpt from the episode you’re listening to and fire it off with a quick text message. Thank you so much for spreading the word and remember B.rad.




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