Announcer: 00:00 Welcome to the Dr. Gundry Podcast, the weekly podcast where Dr. G gives you the tools you need to boost your health and live your healthiest life.
Dr. Gundry: 00:09 So welcome to the Dr. Gundry Podcast. You know, when it comes to your health, I believe that knowledge is power, and every day I get questions about how to live a healthier, happier life. You know, it’s important for me for you to get the tools and knowledge you need to make it a reality for yourself, your family, and even our community and your community.
Dr. Gundry: 00:33 So today, I’m going to answer a few questions people have asked me about my new book, The Longevity Paradox, on my social media channels, like my Instagram page @DrStevenGundry. By the way, a big thank you to each and every one of you that actually participated in asking a question. You know, we actually had an amazing response, and I read every one of them and hopefully we’ll get to a whole bunch of them, so if I didn’t get to you this time, it doesn’t mean it wasn’t important and it doesn’t mean I didn’t read it, because I read every one of them, and there were a lot. So I’ll try to get to as many as we can do.
Dr. Gundry: 01:15 On that note, let’s get started to cover as much ground as possible. So we’ll start with question from Nicki ‘New PS’: “If you have an autoimmune condition, should you follow the Plant Paradox or the Longevity Paradox diet?” That’s a great question.
Dr. Gundry: 01:33 They’re actually equally as effective for autoimmune disease, but I think it’s far more important, particularly in calming down the autoimmune condition, to really start with the Plant Paradox and go through the phases properly. The Longevity Paradox is really, okay now that you’ve got the Plant Paradox figured out, you’ve got the essentials. Okay, now how do we translate this into dying young at a ripe old age? Well, the first thing you’ve got to do and I’ve got to do is get your autoimmune disease in remission, and the good news is most people who follow this program go into remission, and that’s the exciting news.
Dr. Gundry: 02:24 Okay, next question is from Mike ‘Doc’ McGinnis. “Do you recommend any modifications for athletes and those trying to build muscle?” Another great question.
Dr. Gundry: 02:35 Number one, you do not have to make any modifications if you’re trying to build muscle. If you do want to increase protein, I have no problem with that if you’re actively trying to build muscle. My personal feeling is you’ll get just as much benefit by adding a plant protein like hemp for instance, as adding an animal protein, and depending on how young you are, you’re going to be able to, for lack of a better word, get away with more animal protein. If I have my druthers in animal proteins, I’d much rather you get proteins from pastured or omega-3 eggs or from wild fish and wild shellfish. Let me just give a quick proviso. Tuna is not a great source of animal protein for anybody, particularly sashimi grade tuna. If you want to use the tuna in cans, it’s actually from small tuna and doesn’t have a lot of mercury, but most of the people that I see with high mercury levels in my practice are either big-time sashimi or sushi eaters or dentists, and it’s obvious why a lot of dentists have high mercuries.
Dr. Gundry: 04:00 Now, here’s an interesting one. Tatianne Petruzzi wrote in and asked, “The Longevity Paradox states the importance of living in sync with seasonal shifts. How about the people that live in tropical areas? We have year-round availability to many fruits and vegetables even if we’re eating locally grown produce. How do we have cyclical microbiomes?”
Dr. Gundry: 04:26 Excellent question, and what most of us have to realize is that even in tropical climates, initially traditionally plants only produce fruit once a year in cyclical periods of time. Modern plants have been hybridized even in the tropics to produce fruit over a much longer period of time. That doesn’t make it natural. I mean, here in Southern California, we can grow strawberries 365 days a year. These are frankenberries, quite frankly. They will ripen, have sweetness, without actually even getting red, and that doesn’t mean that… They’re grown locally, they’re available. That doesn’t mean we should be eating them. Strawberries we should only be eating in the true summer. Just like an apple. We can have apples grow nearly year-round. I have apples in my backyard that are producing full apples right now and it’s May. That’s bizarre, but it’s been bred to do that. So even in tropical climates, you have to realize that almost everything that you’re getting, even growing naturally, has been hybridized over the last 50, 100 years, so you’ve got to be very careful with even in the tropical climates.
Dr. Gundry: 06:02 Let me give you an example about eating in a tropical climate. The last remaining hunter gatherers live in tropical climates, and even studying those people, we know that out in the bush, there are only certain times of the year that fruit and honey is available, and other times of the year, it’s never available and they actually switch from a very animal-centric diet to a very fruit and honey-centric diet, and their microbiome switches dramatically in those swings. And I think, and there’s evidence to suggest this, that this swing in the microbiome, this change in diversity of the microbiome may be one of the factors that contributes to longevity. Certainly up until 100 years ago, we had huge shifts in our diet from fruits that were available to no fruits available, so if you’re living in places where year-round fruit is available, the easiest way to do that is, “Okay, I’m going to choose three months where I’m going to eat fruit, and the other nine months I’m not going to.” And you choose your three months, and that makes it easy.
Dr. Gundry: 07:30 Kat ‘J7’ asks, “It seems many brands are coming out with cheese, yogurt, and milk from grass-fed cows. Is that automatically compliant? I’m concerned for hidden or misleading ingredients.”
Dr. Gundry: 07:44 So there are a lot of grass-fed products that are coming out. Unfortunately, most of the animals in the United States, the cows, are Holstein, which have casein a1. Jerseys have a mixture of casein a1 and casein a2. Guernsey cows and Swiss Browns are a2, and there are still some herds of Guernsey. In fact, if you look for ice cream makers, you’ll usually find Guernsey cows because Guernseys have a lot more fat in their milk than the other cows, and that’s prized in ice cream makers. In fact, that’s where I started to find a2 cow milk herds, by tracing down ice cream makers.
Dr. Gundry: 08:33 So having said that, just because it’s grass-fed doesn’t mean it’s not going to have casein a1 as it’s primary protein. So do your homework, if you have to, call the company, call the farmer, and find out where it came from. The good news is, the vast majority of cows in France, Italy, and Switzerland are a2 cows. The other great news is that goats, sheep, and water buffalo are all a2, so that those cheeses are perfectly safe. In fact, I had some when I was in New York City, and I went to my favorite Italian restaurant, and they had buffalo mozzarella imported from Italy, and I knew it was safe so I had it, so there you go.
Dr. Gundry: 09:18 Next I’ll answer a question from Kon-Lee Mae? She wrote in and said, “Your supplement list doesn’t include calcium. My mother had osteoporosis, and I’m wondering what someone concerned with bone health should be supplementing?”
Dr. Gundry: 09:33 Believe it or not, even our federal government has reversed itself and said there is no woman who should be taking a calcium supplement, believe it or not. In fact, calcium supplements have been indicated as causing calcification in arteries, and causing calcification in kidney stones, rather than going into bone. As I wrote about in The Longevity Paradox, and in The Plant Paradox, there’s some pretty scary information that lectins, particularly in corn and soy beans, cause osteoporosis in chickens, and in fact, 10% of all chickens, even organic chickens which are fed organic corn and soy beans, are lame at the time they’re killed.
Dr. Gundry: 10:27 And in fact, one of the reasons you have 100,000 chickens in a warehouse crammed up against each other, is they actually hold each other up. Because they have so much osteoporosis in their bones. My wife Penny, who I’ve mentioned before, marathon runner, had osteopenia, because she was eating a heavily grain-based runner’s diet. When we stopped her doing these big runs, and took away her grains, lo and behold her osteopenia went away. And I see that in so many of my patients, without giving them these horrible, quite frankly, bone-making compounds. So please, you’ll get plenty of normal calcium in the leaves and vegetables that you eat, you don’t need to supplement, but it’s a great question.
Dr. Gundry: 11:24 Okay, our next question from Becky ‘Dot Frito’ is about exercise. “After reading The Longevity Paradox I’m trying to figure out how much I should be running. What do you recommend for weekly mileage? I feel good and still stay young, I currently run about 20 – 25 miles a week.”
Dr. Gundry: 11:42 Okay, so let’s divide by 7, that’s about 3, maybe 4 maximum miles per day. I do personally believe you should have one or two rest days, in that sort of program. When we look at damage to heart muscle, and we can measure that with a very sensitive test called cardiac troponin I, it looks like for most of my patients, when they exceed about five miles of running, and this is a reasonable clip, this is not world-class-athlete clip, that they begin to make, we can measure this myocardial damage. And when we ask them to back off, on that distance, then they go back to normal. If you look at the literature, and there’s now a lot of literature on ultra-marathoners, marathoners, even half-marathoners who do it chronically for their lives, they do damage the right ventricle of their heart, and they get fibrosis of their heart.
Dr. Gundry: 12:53 I’ve had several long term, long distance runners who unfortunately, in my practice, have died of congestive heart failure from their right ventricle working poorly. And they had normal coronaries, so it’s just a word of warning. Obviously there are a lot of great ways to get endorphin manufacturing, and running is one of them, but just remember that Dr. Sheehan, one of the great fathers of running, died from metastatic prostate cancer, and the literature is full of long distance runners who have died in the act of long distance running.
Dr. Gundry: 13:34 So three to five miles, knock your socks off. My dogs and I do about two and half, three miles, at a jog in hills every day. The good news about dogs is, we have to take a break for the potty stops, so I get to get a little rest, but that’s perfectly fine.
Dr. Gundry: 13:53 Our next question is from ‘So Cal a Rocker Gal,’ okay! “What are your thoughts about the amino acid ergothioneine? That seems to be the hot ingredient lately.”
Dr. Gundry: 14:06 Well actually that’s a compound, it’s not an amino acid, it is a compound that’s found in some mushrooms, and I’m a big fan of it myself. I take a lot of mushroom supplements just to get ergothioneine in me. The interesting thing of it, this is one of the few compounds that crosses the blood-brain barrier. And if you’ve read the literature recently, there’s a very interesting study in humans out of Singapore that shows that eating two cups of mushrooms per week, either cooked or raw, it doesn’t matter, and two cups of cooked mushrooms, if you take two cups of mushrooms and cook it, you will have a very small amount. Those people who ate, on average, two cups of mushrooms per week had a 90% reduction in Alzheimer’s compared to people who did not do that.
Dr. Gundry: 15:01 And you’ll see in The Longevity Paradox that mushrooms, and even mushroom broth has a huge place in the recipes. And that’s because mushrooms are one of the richest sources of polyamines, these really cool compounds that promote longevity in every study where they’ve ever been introduced. So get more mushrooms in your life, they’re a great source of ergothioneine, yeah, good stuff.
Dr. Gundry: 15:33 Alcohol, always a popular topic, and this comes from ‘Prep Dress’: “What is the safest alcohol to drink besides red wine? I don’t like red wine, can I have white wine?”
Dr. Gundry: 15:48 Well first of all, the idea of all these things is to try to not negotiate. But as you have probably read and seen in my pyramid, that there is a very interesting French study, showing that the polyphenols in champagne, in a study among French women lessened dementia and Alzheimer’s in the champagne drinkers. Now I mention this constantly because my wife has that study attached to our refrigerator door, and just last night we were talking about with her, the health benefits of champagne. So I’ll have my red wine, and she’ll have a glass of champagne. Quite frankly, if you get champagne from the pinot noir grape, and a lot of champagnes are pinot noir-based, or at least a blend, that was what the study was done.
Dr. Gundry: 16:47 So do I think red wine is the best source of polyphenols that benefit health? Yes, but champagne may be a close second. If you’re going to have white wine, please have white wine that was aged in oak barrels. Because you actually get the benefit of the oak polyphenols in the white wine, but so many white wines, particularly in this country, have been adulterated with sugar to make them more pleasing to the palate at the wine bar, and you just have to be aware that white wine, in general, will have a much higher sugar content, than red wine.
Dr. Gundry: 17:30 Oh! And by the way, fun fact. Champagne is normally, at the final production, a small amount of sugar is added called the dosage, there are non-dosage champagnes, and quite frankly we have a number that my wife drinks, because we’re trying to stay in ketosis most of our time.
Dr. Gundry: 17:54 Okay, so the next question comes from one of my original big fans, and a shout out to Lectin-Free Mama, and thanks for sending this question in: “I know you’ve come out against juicing in the past, but it is a time-honored tradition of cleansing and detoxing. If we choose organic ‘Yes List’ veggies, press it at home, and pair it with fat to slow absorption, is there anything inherently bad about juicing as a form of detox? If so, what do you suggest instead?”
Dr. Gundry: 18:26 Well you’re going to hear me in my letters, talk about detoxing, and how we quite frankly do it completely wrong. And I’m going to have a lot to say about that, so stay tuned. However, the best part of juicing is being thrown away, in terms of the pulp. The pulp is what feeds your friendly bacteria. So you’ve heard me say this over and over again, particularly with fruits, juice your fruits, throw the juice away, and then eat the pulp. And I think a Blendtec or a Nutribullet or a Magic Bullet or Vitamix is a far better way to handle your vegetables than juicing. I really think you’re throwing the best part of the plant away by juicing. And if you want to “detox” with vegetables, just use the whole thing.
Dr. Gundry: 19:31 Now having said that, the juice, so many of the juices I see have been mixed with, “Oh well we’re going to throw the juice of an apple in, or we’re going to throw the juice of a cucumber in,” and quite frankly these are fruits, and all you’re doing is getting a lot of sugar in your diet, and that’s certainly not good for detoxing. But excellent question!
Dr. Gundry: 19:57 Okay, here’s a great question from Maddie_Mo: “Is it safe for Type 1 diabetics to fast/do calorie restrictions? Any other tips for us Type 1 diabetics wanting to live to 100-plus?”
Dr. Gundry: 20:10 So I take care of an NFL football player who is a Type 1 diabetic, and I can tell you that he follows my ketogenic program to a T. He routinely runs fasting blood sugars of 32 to 36 and plays competitive football. And I think as long as you can generate ketosis, not ketoacidosis, they’re two totally different things, that you can successfully fast, intermittent fast, as a Type 1 diabetic. If you’d asked me that 20 years ago, I would have said, “Don’t be ridiculous,” but now that I am taking care of actually a number of Type 1 diabetics, I’m very impressed that even you guys, done properly can really fast and do ketosis safely. You have to obviously monitor yourself, or have a physician monitor you, but with the new modern continuous glucose monitors and the modern ketosis monitors, I think it’s absolutely one of the things you should introduce into your program to live to be 100-plus. It’s actually exciting times for Type 1 diabetics.
Dr. Gundry: 21:46 Okay, our last question is from Ellie Shandler, “Can we eat the skins of sweet potatoes, ginger, and turmeric?”
Dr. Gundry: 21:55 Hey that’s a great question, believe it or not, the lectins in tubers are actually out in the skin, for the most part. So as a general rule, unless you’re pressure-cooking your sweet potatoes or turmeric or ginger, I’d rather you peel them or eat out the insides. I have a lot of patients that we do pressure cook their yams and sweet potatoes, because we found that a lot of people are still sensitive to those lectins in tubers. And remember, even the tubers of plants, the plants really don’t want you to eat their storage system, so we’ve got to get around their defense mechanisms. So, just pressure cook them, it’s really easy. Or peel your turmeric and ginger.
Dr. Gundry: 22:49 Okay, so that’s all the time for questions we have today, it’s great hearing from you, keep sending them in, stay tuned for more question-and-answer sessions like this in the coming months. It’s actually one of our most popular podcasts, so you keep sending them in, I’ll keep trying to answer them. So we’ll see you next time and send them in, because I’m Dr. Gundry and I’m always looking out for you.
Dr. Gundry: 23:15 Thanks for joining me on this episode of The Dr. Gundry podcast. Before you go, I just wanted to remind you that you can find the show on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts. And if you want to watch each episode of The Dr. Gundry podcast, you can always find me on YouTube, at youtube.com/drgundry. Because I’m Dr. Gundry, and I’m always looking out for you.