Friday, May 31, 2019

Weekly Link Love — Edition 31

Research of the Week

Researchers find 120,000-year old evidence of starchy tuber consumption.

General intelligence in orangutans.

Ravens feel bad when their friends feel bad.

Two things that recent research suggests is good for multiple sclerosis patients: red meat and keto.

Habitual coffee consumption may reduce all-cause mortality by improving resting heart rate.

New Primal Blueprint Podcasts

Episode 344: Endurance: Brad’s Tough Guy Warning: Host Brad gives a warning to all you tough guys out there about proper recovery and its effect on testosterone.

Episode 345: Gary Foresman, MD: Host Elle Russ chats with Gary Foresman about using low dose naltrexone to treat autoimmune disorders.

Primal Health Coach Radio, Episode 13: Erin and Laura sit down with triathlon influencer, Taren Gesell, to talk about his successful business transition and his belief in the power of action steps.

Each week, select Mark’s Daily Apple blog posts are prepared as Primal Blueprint Podcasts. Need to catch up on reading, but don’t have the time? Prefer to listen to articles while on the go? Check out the new blog post podcasts below, and subscribe to the Primal Blueprint Podcast here so you never miss an episode.

Media, Schmedia

The mainstream is beginning to admit that ultraprocessed foods are terrible for us.

Overinvested “bully parents” are ruining youth sports.

Interesting Blog Posts

Why methane is different.

Why Americans use so much air-conditioning (and why it’s probably better for the environment than heating).

Social Notes

I agree with this list of best low-carb, keto-friendly snacks.

How I do cold brew.

ButcherBox is offering up a super grill deal to kick off summer. Get a $59 array of their amazing New York Strip Steaks, Baby Back Ribs, and Ground Beef totally free with your first box order.

Everything Else

College kids aren’t checking out books from the library anymore.

Things I’m Up to and Interested In

Article I’m reading: Walt Whitman on What Makes Life Worth Living.

Thing I’d love to try someday: Free-diving with sleeping whales.

Concept I’m mulling over: The complicated role of testosterone in development, competition, and human reproductive behavior.

I agree: Teens should start businesses.

Chapter I’m reading: “Design Flaws.”

Question I’m Asking

With Google stopping development of its glucose-monitoring lens and all the other failures and dubious advancements, tech is realizing that biology’s a hard nut to crack. Do you think technology will ever figure out human biology and vault us into sci-fi territory?

Recipe Corner

Time Capsule

One year ago (May 26 – Jun 1)

Comment of the Week

“Regarding adoptions of ‘easy wins’ discussed in your Sunday with Sisson letter — I think it mostly comes down to habits. It’s difficult to establish a new habit. Even an easy one, such as daily push ups takes effort to establish. Also, and here’s what’s often not appreciated, our current habits usually kick in automatically and interfere with the development of a new one. What’s the solution? The most effective way to establish a new habit is to remove yourself from your typical situation. Why? Because our habits are triggered by the cues in our environment. Change the environment, even by moving your morning routine or ritual from one room of your home to another, can remove these powerful triggers and allow you to more easily focus on your new habit.”

– Great thoughts from Aaron Blaisdell.


The post Weekly Link Love — Edition 31 appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

Last Call For the June Keto Reset + The Grand Prize Giveaway!

Don’t miss tonight’s deadline (midnight PDT, 5/31/19) to join the June Keto Reset and to register for the BIGGEST grand prize I’ve ever given away.

Have you been thinking about going keto or recommitting to a keto routine? The all-new June Keto Reset offers one month of personal guidance, exclusive resources, great deals, and fantastic giveaways. Best of all, it’s totally free. All you do is SIGN UP.

You’ll also have the chance to grab the Keto Mastery Course for free (a $147 value) with the purchase of a Primal Kitchen® Keto Kit. Also, anyone who signs up by the deadline will be entered to win our Keto Reset grand prize giveaway. I’ll randomly select one participant who will bag a full year’s worth of Butcher Box standard meat boxes—plus a $1000 gift certificate to Don’t miss out!

What You’ll Get

Throughout the month of June you’ll receive two emails a week from yours truly with exclusive guidance, tips, and recipes for going keto the right way. You’ll learn how to optimize fat burning and get the results you’ve always wanted.

Heads up: You won’t find these resources on the blog.

(And for those of you who did the January Keto Reset Kickoff, the June experience is completely new—from top to bottom, so join us again!)

Throughout the month you’ll receive:

  • Bi-weekly Emails with Exclusive Keto Tips
  • Food Lists
  • Recipes
  • Personal Keto Reset Journal
  • Keto Reset Guide To Calculating Your Macros (a printable guide that you can hang on your refrigerator).

You’ll have everything you need for a successful Keto Reset.

Simply sign up now and enter your email to register.  (Enter your email in the email collector just under the banner at the top of the page and click subscribe. You don’t need to purchase anything to participate.)

You only have a few hours left! Registration closes May 31, 2019, at midnight PDT. 

But, wait. There’s more…

The Keto Reset Month Giveaways and Grand Prize

Last but not least: the giveaways, including the biggest grand prize I’ve ever offered on Mark’s Daily Apple…. 

One lucky winner will walk away with:

  • One year’s worth of meat boxes from ButcherBox. Every month enjoy a standard box (one of their curated box options or your own customized box) of premium grass-fed, pastured and heritage bred meats. It’s the meat I serve at my own table and unmatched in quality both in terms of healthy sourcing and incredible taste.
  • A $1000 gift certificate to Yup, a thousand dollars to enjoy your favorite Primal supplements, Primal Kitchen collagen products, bars, mayos, dressings, condiments, sauces, and oils, as well as Primal Blueprint books and courses.

It’s the ultimate giveaway package to fuel your Primal-keto journey.

Simply register for the Keto Reset Month by midnight PDT 5/31/19, and you’ll be entered to win. One winner will be randomly chosen at the end of the Keto Reset Month and announced on the Mark’s Daily Apple blog.

Plus, beginning now and throughout the month of June, follow Mark’s Daily Apple on Instagram for weekly giveaways with partners like Medlie, Bonafide Provisions, Taylor Farms, Nuttzo, Vital Farms, and Epic Provisions.

The Keto Deal You Won’t Want To Miss

I’m giving everyone who enrolls in the Keto Reset Month a chance to get the Keto Reset Online Mastery Course for FREE (that’s a $147 value) with the purchase of a Primal Kitchen® Advanced Keto Kit. You get my absolute favorite keto-friendly products, plus the most comprehensive multimedia educational experience around, designed for anyone interested in the ketogenic diet. It’s an unbelievable deal.

If you missed the chance to grab your free course in January, here’s your shot. Note: You can sign up for the Keto Reset Month without taking advantage of the Mastery Course deal.

If you participated in the January Keto Reset Kickoff and took advantage of the Mastery Course offer then, we hope you still join us for the entirely new Keto Reset experience. You’ll find new resources and supports to enhance your keto transition.

Plus, through the end of the sign-up period (5/31/19 midnight PDT), you can grab a free box of keto-friendly Coconut Lime Protein Bars free with any $30 purchase on (a $32.95 value!). Click here to take advantage of that offer or use code FREECLBARS at checkout.

The team and I are pumped for this June. I can’t think of a better way to kick off summer than the Keto Reset Month. I hope you’ll join us.

Thanks for reading, everybody. Weekend Link Love is coming up, as is a great summer soup recipe with the folks from Bonafide Provisions.


The post Last Call For the June Keto Reset + The Grand Prize Giveaway! appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

Chilled Zucchini Basil Soup (+ A Giveaway!)

Soup is one of the most overlooked ways for incorporating a rich variety of vegetables in your diet. That goes double for summer soups. We’re loving this keto- and Primal-friendly Zucchini Basil Soup that can be served either warm or chilled any day of the year. But the nutritional goodness isn’t just in the vegetables and herbs. It also serves up the richness of full-fat coconut milk (feel free to use whole milk or cream if you prefer regular dairy) and all the benefits of collagen protein with the help of Bonafide Organic Chicken Bone Broth. Enjoy—and be sure to check out our community giveaway with Bonafide Provisions below!

Servings: 5 bowls

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 10 minutes


  • 3 medium organic zucchini (peeled and diced in to 1/2 inch cubes)
  • 3 Tbsp. Primal Kitchen® Avocado Oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped into chunks
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped into chunks
  • 1 ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • 1 package Bonafide Organic Chicken Bone Broth (24 oz.)
  • 1 large handful fresh basil (35 g)
  • 1 can organic full-fat coconut milk
  • Optional and highly recommended: extra diced zucchini and bacon top


Heat Instant Pot to Saute setting and drizzle in Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil. Saute scallion and garlic until the onion is translucent.

Sprinkle in 1/2 tsp salt. Add in chopped zucchini, coconut milk and Bonafide Organic Chicken Bone Broth. Cook on Manual High for 5 minutes.

Puree (or immersion blend) soup until smooth.

Add in basil and blend. Feel free to add another teaspoon of salt (or to taste). Chill and store in mason jars.

Serve warm or chilled, and top with optional zucchini and bacon.

Nutritional Information (per serving without toppings):

  • Calories: 269
  • Net Carbohydrates: 5 grams
  • Fat: 24 grams
  • Protein: 8 grams

Now For the Giveaway…

Enter to win $100 in keto staples from Primal Kitchen (including our Keto Starter Kit + Collagen + Protein Bars), a Keto Reset book and Keto Reset Cookbook, plus one of each of Bonafide Provision’s bone broths (turkey, frontier, chicken, beef) and an 8-pack Keto Broth (dairy-free).

To enter:
1. FOLLOW @bonafideprovisions, @primalkitchenfoods, @marksdailyapple & @theprimalblueprint
2. COMMENT on the giveaway Instagram post with your favorite thing about summer
3. BONUS entries: Sign up for our FREE Keto Reset month here before midnight PDT, 5/31/19.

We’ll be choosing TWO lucky winners. Open to U.S. entries only. The winners will be announced and contacted via Instagram direct message on Friday, June 7th. Good luck, everyone!


The post Chilled Zucchini Basil Soup (+ A Giveaway!) appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

Nothing To Wine About

About once a month I get together with a group of women for a fancy ladies lunch. Our favorite spots: Pippin Hill, Orzo, Tilman’s. Aka all places where we can get a great salad and a glass of wine. One small glass is just enough to kick off the weekend a little early.

Lunch At Tilman’s

Recently we spent a sunny lunch hour at Tilman’s.

Babies are invited too <3

We shared a bottle of rosé five ways. This was a pinot noir rosé and was 100% delicious.

I ordered a special salad of the day – greens with a creamy gorgonzola dressing (!), prosciutto chips, dried cherries, and almonds.

Little B had a great time charming the ladies!

Cheers to the weekend!

The post Nothing To Wine About appeared first on Kath Eats Real Food.

from Kath Eats Real Food

Episode 430 – Q&A with Robb and Nicki #23


We’re here with Episode 430, Q&A #23, packed full of more of your best questions!

Submit your own questions for the podcast at:

If you want to see the video for this podcast, be sure to check out our YouTube channel.

Show Notes:

1. Thoughts On Oxalates? [3:02]

Alex says:

What is your perspective on oxalates? Is there any merit to what people like Dr William Shaw, Sally Norton, and Elliot Overton say about the evils of oxalates? or can we all keep eating spinach and almonds?  Could this be the explanation as to why some people who go full carnivore benefit from eliminating all greens?


2. Living WELL to 100 and Beyond [10:05]

Paul says:

Robb and Nicki, I am definitely one of the original 6 listeners and credit you many times for changing my life and educating me to the point that I helped other people change their lives. Ok I am 62 in very good shape and have a smoking hot younger wife that I would live to make it to our 50th wedding anniversary, which will make me 107. So the question is what test do I do now to make sure I have the best chance to achieve this goal and hopefully correct if something is wrong now?


3. Eating For Olympic Weightlifting [13:15]

Jake says:


Thank you for the podcast its great. I know your very busy but I was wondering how you would suggest approaching a healthy diet for olympic weightlifting? I’m 35, 5ft9in 185lbs and around 18% body fat( this is a rough estimate using ketogains website). I want to compete but not looking to sacrifice my health, and would like to lift into my old age. You mentioned that you competed in powerlifting when you were younger and I thought maybe you would have some insight into the subject. I currently intermittent fast roughly 14hrs everyday. My diet is protein from variety of meats,carbs from lots of fresh veggies, fats from nuts, coconut and olive oil. No sugars unless family holiday. My goal is to lose some body fat but maintain my strength. I tried to go full keto, no carbs, and my strength plummets. Thanks again, sorry for such a long question.


4. Low Carb & Sleep [16:18]

Angel says:

Hi Robb,

Thanks for answering our questions! When I eat low carb, I tend to wake up at 3am and have a hard time falling back asleep. However, if I have some carbs (i.e. a small bowl of rice or a sweet potato) during dinner, I generally sleep through the night and wake up naturally a little after 6am. I usually go to bed around 10pm, and eat dinner around 6pm.

The problem is, when I eat carbs during dinner, I gain weight overtime. Eating low carb helps me lose weight. Is there a reason for the interrupted sleep eating low carb? I searched online and some people say it’s due to noradrenaline. I don’t know what that is and I am wondering how i can improve my sleep while eating low carb? Thank you very much for your knowledge!



5. Any Updates To The Paleo Solution? [18:36]

Mike says:

Going back to your first book – what are the main things you would revise or add – if you ever did a revision?


Where you can find us:



Submit questions for the podcast:



Download a copy of the transcript here (PDF)

Nicki: Hey Hubs.

Robb: And the answer is no. Nicki asked me if I had anything funny to say before we rolled, but I don’t.

Nicki: No, just want to pluck random hairs that are falling out of-

Robb: You’re shedding.

Nicki: Am I?

Robb: Yeah, you’re heading all Sinéad O’Connor over here.

Nicki: Don’t think I’m going to go with that direction.

Robb: Well babe, nothing compares to you.

Nicki: All right. Let’s see, let’s jump in with our first question from, actually Wade’s Army, do you want to tell folks about Wade’s Army?

Robb: Oh man, our dear friends John and Kate Welbourn, they had twin girls, seven years ago.

Nicki: Yup.

Robb: And the girls were friends with another-

Nicki: One of Kate’s really good friends from college.

Robb: Yeah, well you know this story better than I do.

Nicki: Yeah, one of Kate’s really good friends from college had a set of boy/girl twins. And the boy, Wade, ended up with neuroblastoma. So they started Wade’s Army to fundraise and get awareness around neuroblastoma, and it’s a wonderful wonderful non-profit, and every fall they do a big fundraiser and workout.

Robb: And the neuroblastoma people are pretty cool. When I was first approached to help with this I wrote a bit of a critical email saying that not enough effort is put into prevention and investigation of alternative therapies like hyperbaric oxygen, ketogenic diets and whatnot. And I got an email back from these folks and they said they were wide open as far as diversifying what they looked at, all that they were interested in was moving the ball forward on this stuff. So they appear to be really wonderful people, even at that neuroblastoma research side of the story.

Robb: And then John and Kate are super passionate about it. It’s one of the only philanthropic things that I feel comfortable contributing to it at this point, everything else seems like kind of a-

Nicki: You never know-

Robb: Smoke and mirrors deal, so yeah.

Nicki: Also your money doesn’t go exactly where you think it’s going to go, but it definitely does with these guys. So anyway, just thought I’d explain the shirt.

Robb: So check out Wade’s Army if you feel inclined to donate to them, please do.

Nicki: Yup. Okay, we’ll jump into our first question from Alex on oxalates. “Rob, what is your perspective on oxalates, is there any merit to what people like Dr. Williams Shaw, Sally Norton and Elliot Overton say about the evils of oxalates, or can we all keep eating spinach and almonds? Could this be the explanation as to why some people who go full carnivore benefit from eliminating all greens?”

Robb: So maybe the easiest thing to answer there is the last point, yeah this is almost certainly one of the reasons why folks that go full carnivore finally address that niggling underlying issue that keto and paleo, although benefiting sometimes to some degree, doesn’t fully resolve. And it’s interesting, you could make the case that we should be able to handle oxalates just fine, and when you look at some of the gut microbiota of the [hudsa 00:03:07], for example, they have oxalate metabolizing bacteria. And then there’s also issues around adequate calcium intake and can mitigate some of the deleterious effects of oxalate, basically keeping it sequestered in the feces and it moves out instead of getting moved in.

Robb: But the results are the reality that we should have bacteria that can help us deal with oxalates. Generally in westernized populations we don’t. And this is some of the conundrum that I think we face at large is, whatever reason, the way that our westernized diet is altering the gut microbiota, we are losing the ability to deal with more and more foods. And to some degree like keto, low carb, zero carb, carnivore, it’s kind of like the last spot that people end up that they can still deal with things. And it seems like fruits to some degree is less of a problem. Some things like white rice or different starchy components may be for different people are less problematic. Mushrooms may be less problematic.

Robb: But a lot of these things that are historically thought of as being health foods and super foods like spinach and kale and all that stuff, they really cause a lot of problems for some people. And it’s interesting again when we think about this from the evidence-based nutrition folks and it fits your macros folks, or what have you. We really should be able to deal with this stuff better than what we do. Nobody, as far as I can tell right now, is entirely clear about how we can restore the gut microbiota.

Robb: I was at the evolutionary medicine conference that [inaudible 00:04:57] puts on each year, and Erika Sonenberg from the Sonenberg Lab at Stanford was there and we were talking about this stuff. And there’s kind of a reality that when you look at the gut microbiota over generations, and they’ve done this in mice and we’ve also seen this in humans. It’s getting more and more narrow as time goes on, which is not good. It’s a multi generational problem. This is the point that I wanted to make about the, it fits your macros folks and some of the evidence-based nutrition folks, is that it appears that any inclusion of westernized foods begins and accelerates the loss of gut microbiotic diversity.

Robb: So this whole notion that you can have a little bit here and there, maybe a fucking lie, or it may be completely misinformed, ill informed if we’re thinking about the gut microbiota as like this extra genomic information processing center where we’ve got more genetic diversity in our gut than we have in the totality of humanity. And that stuff is being lost over time, and there’s a case to be made that no amount of westernized foods are really safe in this regard. I’m not stating this as fact, I’m stating this as a little bit of a hypothesis. But if the hypothesis is true, that the inclusion of virtually any amount of westernized foods starts moving us in a direction of a more curtailed gut microbiota, then what the fuck are we going to do about that?

Robb: And how are people going to modify their recommendations according to that information? And again, the information that comes out of the Sonenberg Lab is very interesting in this regard, and there’s definitely a lot of people that, myself included, like somebody held my feet to the fire about all the almonds I was eating. And fucking lo and behold man, I think some of the final kind of gut related stuff that I had was from eating these nuts. And I’ve tinkered with soaking and sprouting and getting the ghost of [inaudible 00:07:10] priced to lay hands on my sprouted fucking stuff. And it’s better, but it’s not great. Like I do better without them.

Robb: And so I’m kind of in this mode of carnivore plus coffee and fermented food. It’s kind of where I’m at and doing really well with that. Like I feel really good, my digestion is good. But it’s interesting, I’ve shifted to a more curtailed, less diverse food intake, but I feel better. But then there’s an argument to be made that I’m probably tuning my gut microbiota to a more narrow frequency band, but I’m just stuck at this point. I don’t know what else to do, I’ve done like every probiotic prebiotic. I won’t name any of them because I don’t want to throw them under the bus, because it didn’t work for me doesn’t mean they won’t work for someone else.

Robb: But it’s a really interesting complex topic. And I know I’m getting totally out in the weeds here, but on the one hand I think that we have people maybe in the ancestral health scene, some people that sell a degree of knowledge on this topic that is bullshit. Like they can claim this kind of magic divination that oh if you have this profile then you need to do X, Y, Z. And I think that that’s horse shit. But then on the flip side I think that the evidence-based nutrition folks are dismissive of this topic to the point of eventual legal ramifications or something. Just moral ramifications if nothing else. Like they too approach this story with this remarkable degree of certitude when it’s a brand new topic, there’s so much more that we don’t know than what we do know.

Robb: And I think at the end of the day the most important thing that folks can do is have kind of a rubric for if you are sick, what is a way that we can get you healthy? And then we start trying to iterate and move from there. That was a short question with a very very very very very long answer.

Nicki: All right. Our next question is from Paul on living well to 100 and beyond. “Robb and Nicki, I’m definitely one of the original six listeners and credit you many times for changing my life and educating me to the point that I helped other people change their lives. Okay, I’m 62, in very good shape, and have a smoking hot younger wife that I would love to make it to our 50th wedding anniversary, which would make me 107. So the question is, what test do I do now to make sure I have the best chance to achieve this goal and hopefully correct it if something is wrong?”

Robb: Man. What do you think? What would your-

Nicki: Tests?

Robb: Yeah. Singular test. So I could make a case for the whole LPRI score, to look at where one’s insulin resistance versus sensitivity metabolic health, metabolic flexibility. It also gives you insight into systemic inflammation, mainly from GlycA and a couple of other elements in there. So this is something we use in the advanced testing within the clinic here in Reno. It’s incredibly valuable for being able to assign kind of a metabolic risk number on folks. And if we get an improvement … Let’s say the higher the number the kind of worse things are.

Robb: If somebody does the LPRI score and they get a number of 85, and we move them to a 45, almost from like a life insurance actuarial table perspective, we can assign a risk mitigation based off that change, which is basically the underpinning of most of the work that we’ve done. So as an external test that LPRI score I think could be really really valuable for establishing a baseline and trying to track that over time.

Robb: Now beyond that, from my perspective, I-

Nicki: Muscle mass, like how much muscle mass are you carrying?

Robb: Muscle mass. Yeah. And some of these benchmarks of a double body weight deadlift. A body weight and a half back squat, body weight and some change bench. Maybe a body weight standing press. Your weight plus 50 to 72% of your weight in a weighted chin or pull-up. Maintaining muscle mass and then maintaining some degree of metabolic engine both in the aerobic and the anaerobic areas, I think is about as good a bet is what you’re going to get with that as far as some reasonably objective measures that would correlate with effective aging.

Robb: It’s a great question, and people can complicate this stuff. Like I used to be a little bit of a fan of looking at telomeres length and then some recent research that I read really poured some cold water down my back on that one. And so that’s interesting, so the whole telomeres length story is not nearly as compelling as what I once thought it was.

Nicki: Okay. Paul, you’ll have to check-in in 10 years increments and let us know how you’re doing.

Robb: Yeah, keep us posted man. Yeah.

Nicki: Our next question is from Jake on Olympic weightlifting. “Robb, thank you for the podcast it’s great. I know you’re very busy, but I was wondering how you would suggest approaching a healthy diet for Olympic weightlifting? I’m 35, 5’9″, 185 pounds, and around 18% body fat. This is a rough estimate using the keto gains website. I want to compete but not looking to sacrifice my health and would like to lift into my old age. You mentioned that you competed in power lifting when you were younger, and I thought maybe you would have some insight into the subject. I currently intermittent fast roughly 14 hours every day, my diet is protein from a variety of meats, carbs from lots of fresh veggies, fats from nuts, coconut and olive oil. No sugars unless family holiday. My goal is to lose some body fat but maintain my strength. I tried to go full keto, no carbs, and my strength plummets. Thanks again, sorry for such a long question.”

Robb: Man, so what are the main questions with this? Like he wants to compete, he wants to lean out.

Nicki: How would you structure a diet for weightlifting such that he’s obviously strong and able to perform.

Robb: Right.

Nicki: And can lose some body fat.

Robb: Yeah, so on the keto topic, I would venture that Jake probably didn’t get enough sodium and electrolytes in general. There is a reality that the first-

Nicki: Well and he said, no carbs too, so there’s also he could potentially have some carbs post training.

Robb: Yeah. I think there’s different ways of skinning that for sure. One thing is if you do go keto, you got to be very aggressive in supplementing electrolytes in particular, sodium. Beyond that, but keto is by no means the only route to losing body fat. And so you could still use the keto gains macro nutrient calculator to help you establish a baseline of caloric intake, and then you just tweak it a little bit. Like if you make sure that you do the keto gains recommended protein intake which is about a gram, gram and a half of protein per pound lean body mass. And then it’s going to make a recommendation around your carbs and fat. The carbs are going to be set automatically at about 25 grams per day. If you want to add … Let’s say you want to run 100 grams of carbs a day, so you’re going to add 75 grams of carbs, you’re going to delete approximately about 30 grams of fat.

Robb: Like you could do the numbers on that, but that’s kind of the approximate ballpark on that. In that way you’ve got to really slick way of quickly figuring out what a recommended caloric intake is, make sure you’re benchmarked on your protein, and then just adjust the carbs and fat appropriate to what you’re doing. And you would still probably benefit from an eye towards proper electrolyte supplementation.

Nicki: Okay. Thanks Jake, our next question is on low carb and sleep from Angel. “Hi Robb, thanks for answering our questions. When I eat low carb I tend to wake up at 3 am and have a hard time falling back asleep. However, if I have some carbs, like a small bowel of rice or a sweet potato during dinner I generally sleep through the night and wake up naturally a little after 6 am. I usually go to bed around 10 pm and eat dinner around 6 pm. The problem is, when I eat carbs during dinner I gain weight over time.”

Nicki: Overtime, or over time? I don’t know. “Eating low carb helps me lose weight. Is there a reason for the interrupted sleep while eating low carb? I searched online and some people say it’s due to noradrenaline, I don’t know what that is and I’m wondering how I can improve my sleep while eating low carb. Thank you very much for your knowledge.”

Robb: Do you want to tackle this one?

Nicki: I mean the sodium one is the one that’s popping out for me.

Robb: Yeah, for sure. When folks shift lower carb even from basic paleo type carb levels they definitely notice an increase in adrenaline, noradrenaline, cortisol, these hormones are being released kind of in a compensatory effort to retain more sodium. It’s kind of an indirect work around, but it’s registering as a stress. The low sodium environment, there’s a downward spiral where you shed sodium, then you shed potassium, and then all hell kind of breaks loose. And so this is another scenario where really being on point with electrolytes is critical and you have to hit that at least five grams of sodium plus the potassium and magnesium each day.

Robb: What we find though is that if folks are generally eating a whole food based diet, then you pretty well on magnesium and potassium. They might need a little bit of supplemental help there. But they’re really deficient in the sodium. And so this is one of these things that just, it’s like magic. If you are staying on point with the electrolyte supplementation, you either do bouillon, you do a home brew, or you get something like Element and it fixes this problem remarkably quickly.

Nicki: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Robb: Yeah.

Nicki: Okay. So electrolytes, Angel, and then report back, let us know how you do.

Robb: Yeah, that’d be great.

Nicki: Okay, final question for this week is from Mike on the paleo diet. Mike says, “Going back to your first book, what are the main things you would revise or add if you ever did a revision?”

Robb: Well the funny thing is we did do a revision. There is a volume two-

Nicki: The paperback.

Robb: -it’s a paperback version.

Nicki: Just updated slightly.

Robb: I mean there wasn’t a massive amount that we tweaked. So I had some pretty aggressive fish oil recommendations in the first book, which I modified over time. Thank you for the people that burned me at the stake about getting that one wrong, I was largely following people like Barry Sears and other folks, that information seemed credible at the time. On that fatty acid…

Nicki: The omega three profile in grass fed beef?

Robb: Yeah. So to that fatty acid topic, Diana Rogers and I had been working on this sustainability book and movie called Sacred Cow. And it’s interesting because we’ve had pretty massive pushback from the vegan community. The vegans. Which is not surprising at all, but I tell you one of the more surprising places that we get a shocking degree of pushback, and very vigorous and very ill informed unfortunately, is the really go getter paleo ancestral health crowd that insist that grass fed meat is the only grass fed, grass finish is the only way to go.

Robb: And Diana and I tackle this in the book and we’re also going to be doing a series of blog posts and other support material where I really dig into the literature on this. But the reality is that, so as a baseline, the bulk of ruminant animals, whether it’s cows, sheep, goats, camel, whatever. They’re grass fed for the most part, there is some grain finishing. Now, the thing is, is that I probably am suffer … What do they say, like when you raise kids like you get back what you were…

Nicki: You get back what you put out as a kid.

Robb: -as a kid. And so I’m sure I sowed a lot of the seeds of my frustration on this now. Because early in the story there was a sense that the fanning acid profiles of grass fed meat were remarkably better with regards to the omega three, omega six balance than grain finished meat. Around 2009, 2010 though, Mat LaLonde really did the deep dive into this stuff, and he was like, no man that’s not the case at all. There’s very little difference when you get right down to it.

Robb: And I got into a pissing match on the interwebs, on social media, shocker, with a woman who is a master’s degree in chemical engineering, and she insisted that there was a difference in the protein.

Nicki: Grass fed vs grain fed.

Robb: Of grass fed versus grain finished meat. And I said, show me one paper. And she went through all of this magic and mysticism and flailing and all kinds of appeal to odd authorities, but could not produce one thing that suggested that the protein content, nor really the fatty acid content was significantly different between grass finished and grain finished meat.

Robb: Now from a sustainability perspective, there’s a great argument for doing as much grass finishing as possible, but even in that story, there’s a reality that to the degree that we do continue to grow wheat or corn or rice or whatever, the leftovers in that scenario is not technically grass, but it is something that animals can be finished on. And it is used that way, and it’s a very smart utilization of resources because otherwise that is cellulosic material just builds up and it degrades very slowly. It maybe oxidizes instead of composts and all that type of stuff.

Robb: So there’s really compelling reasons to have a middle ground in this story, and not be complete zealots about it. There is no compelling case from a health perspective that the fatty acid profiles are different. And so that’s a big one from the book that I probably sowed a lot of erroneous information really advocating for grass fed meant, but the reason why I’ve been advocating for grass fed meat, even with the knowledge about there’s not that big of a difference from the health perspective. There is a significant story there from a resource management sustainability perspective.

Robb: So that’s going to be a fun one to unpack over the next 10 years.

Nicki: So the fish oil, the fatty acid profile in grass finish versus grain finished beef. Anything else?

Robb: No, otherwise, paleo solution was pretty on point. You know, making recommendations around sleep, getting out in the sun, lifting some weights, doing some sprinting, not letting your internal dialogue eat you up, that whole the stress chapter. Like the finance piece and everything. So that stuff’s kind of stood the test of time, and honestly got recycled and updated significantly in Wired to Eat. Like it’s still those things are kind of … I would argue kind of universalities in this story, yeah.

Nicki: Okay.

Robb: Is that it?

Nicki: I think that’s our last question for this week, yeah. Thank you guys again for your questions, you can submit them at on the contact page.

Robb: @dasrobbwolf for Instagram, which is about the only place I’m hanging out these days.

Nicki: We drip these questions out there. Also on YouTube, this is episode is sponsored by Drink Element, the electrolyte drink mix that has the sodium that you need if you’re on a low carb or ketogenic diet.

Robb: It has what plants crave.

Nicki: Brawndo.

Robb: Brawndo.

Nicki: Thanks guys.

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Wired-to-Eat-RenderDon’t forget, Wired to Eat is now available!

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

The Friday 5 [Father’s Day Edition]

Hey and happy Friday to you! HOW is it the last day of May!? It was the fastest month ever, right? And I have a feeling this summer is going to fly by as well! I’m excited for June though (hello, birthday month!) and all the fun things that we have planned. Woohoo!

This week’s edition of The Friday 5 is focused all on things Father’s Day, which is just in a couple of weeks – Sunday, June 16. I’ve got a handful of ideas for Father’s Day gifts for the guys in your life. I hope they help with shopping for gifts this year!

1. Under Armour Golf Showdown Shorts – I’m taking up golf this summer and hope to play a lot with Mal. He has a ton of golf shorts, but needed to up his game in the shorts department.

2. Eight Dates – John M. Grottman is a marriage and relationship expert, and I first heard him on the Armchair Expert podcast.  I loved hearing his take on marriage and relationships, so I bought his book Eight Dates for Mal for his birthday. Now, we’re planning to go on the eight dates mentioned in the book this summer. The book guides you and your partner on eight fun, and easy dates, each one focused on a make-or-break issue: trust, conflict, sex, money, family, adventure, spirituality, and dreams. Should be interesting, right? FYI: Buy two books so each partner has a copy to read and participate in the quizzes, questions, etc. in the book. If you guys are interested, I’ll share more about our experience! 🙂

3. Beautycounter Counterman Collection – Are the men in your life using safe products? Yes? No? Maybe? Here’s why you should care: According to a survey conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), men use, on average, 6 products daily, containing a total of about 85 unique ingredients. Of the 85 unique ingredients, many of them are known as endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) since they interfere with hormonal balance, including fertility. These EDCs can also play a part in obesity and coronary heart disease. Long story short, it’s time to clean up the products in the lives of the men you love so much, and Beautycounter‘s Counterman is a line of safer skincare designed specifically for men.

Mal uses a number of products from the line and absolutely loves them, especially the Counterman Clarifying Toner Pads. I’m pretty sure he uses them everyday! I actually like them too, especially when I’m feeling lazy and don’t want to wash my face in the morning! 😉

Here some of Mal’s other favorites:

The Counterman Collection, especially the Shave Regimen and Beard Regimen, make an awesome gift for the special guy in you life! 🙂

4. Father’s Day Wine Gift Set – For the dad who has everything! This $100 gift set includes: ( 1) bottle of 2017 Gallivant Chardonnay, (1) bottle of 2017 Hushkeeper Red Wine, and 1 Scout & Cellar Polo Shirt, packaged in a branded gift box. Father’s Day will be here before we know it! To ensure your Father’s Day orders are delivered before Sunday, June 16, please be mindful of the following order cutoffs: Tuesday, June 4 (Ground) and Tuesday, June 11 (Express).

5. New York Times Custom Birthday Book I shared this birthday book in a previous blog post, but, seriously, how cool is this gift? It would make an amazing gift for Father’s Day – for a dad, grandfather, or any other history fan in your life. The customized book, preserved in library binding and personalized with name and date of birth, is a collection of the New York Times front pages from each year since the recipient’s birth. It takes a fascinating snapshot of history seen through the lens of their special day. I actually bought one for my mom for Mother’s Day. Here’s a video that I share previously if you want to see what the book is all about.

New York Times Custom Birthday Book

Enjoy your weekend, friends!

Sales of the Week (for the guys!)

Question of the Day

What are you gifting for Father’s Day?


This post contains some affiliate links, which means I will earn a small commission from the company if you decide to purchase the product linked to. This compensation helps with expenses to keep CNC up and running. Thank you for your support!

P.S. If you need a little motivation and perhaps a kick in the butt with your diet, the 19-day macro tracking challenge starts TOMORROW! I hope you decide to join us!! 🙂

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4 Mushrooms You Need To Know

When you stop to think about it, mushrooms are remarkable.

They’re closer to animals than plants on the tree of life.

They can break down plastic and petroleum.

The single largest organism on the planet is an underground honey fungus spanning almost 3 miles in the the state of Oregon.

They carry messages along their underground fungal networks using neurotransmitters that are very similar to the ones our brains use.

They’re a kind of “forest internet” which plants and trees use to communicate with each other.

They’re delicious.

And, as it turns out, they possess and confer some very impressive health and therapeutic effects. Several years ago, I highlighted the culinary varieties and explored their considerable health benefits. Go read that, then come back here because I’m going to talk about the different types of adaptogenic mushrooms today. These are the real heavy hitters, the ones that appear to supercharge immune systems, stimulate neuronal growth, improve memory and focus, pacify the anxious mind, increase the libido, and enhance sleep quality.

Let’s go through the most important adaptogenic mushrooms and the evidence for each. I’ll primarily stick to human studies, but may relay some animal studies if they seem relevant.


Reishi has been used in traditional Asian medicine for hundreds of years to treat diseases of the immune system. (Reishi is its Japanese name; in China, it’s called lingzhi and in Korea, it’s yeongji.) Other folk uses include all the regular stuff you expect—aches, pains, allergies, “qi”—but the majority of modern clinical evidence focuses on immunity, cancer, and inflammation.

But the interesting thing to remember is that inflammation figures into pretty much every modern ailment. Even conditions like depression and anxiety are often characterized by a surplus of systemic inflammation. If reishi can soothe the inflammation, it could very well help with all the other seemingly unrelated conditions, too.

Reishi is also said to be very good for sleep, though I wasn’t able to find a supporting human study.

Exercise caution if you have an autoimmune disease, as using reishi to”activate” the immune system that’s attacking you may—theoretically—increase the attack’s severity.

Reishi may also lower libido in high doses, as it inhibits the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone—albeit in rats. More rat research suggests that low doses of reishi could increase libido.

No human studies indicate this, but a rodent study found that giving reishi reduced time to exhaustion in a forced weighted swimming challenge (throw a rat in the water with a weight attached). They got tired faster.


Cordyceps is another mushroom used in traditional Chinese medicine to promote vitality and energy. For the men, that’s code for “better erections.” What does the evidence say?

It is broadly anti-inflammatory.

It’s an effective immuno-adaptogen: it boosts immunity when immune function is too low and dampens it when it’s over-activated. Autoimmune thyroiditis patients who took cordyceps saw dual-direction immunomodulation—too low got higher, too high got lower.

It boosts endurance exercise capacity in older adults (but not endurance capacity in young athletes).

As for the “energy and vitality” claims, that appears to be true in mammals. We have evidence that rats, pigs, mice, and even yaks, goats, and sheep get boosts to testosterone status and sexual function when taking cordyceps, and that it improves brain function and cognition in small mammals, but nothing solid in humans. Still, the fact that it helps other mammals probably indicates utility for us.


Chaga is a mushroom with a long history of use in Northern Eurasia (Russia, Siberia) as well as a considerable body of animal evidence and isolated human cell evidence in support, but no real studies using actual live humans. That’s unfortunate, because chaga appears to be the real deal:

I hope we get some strong human studies in the near future. In the meantime, you can always run your own!

Lion’s Mane

Lion’s Mane is a mushroom that looks like a pom-pom. Or a brain, which is fitting. Lion’s Mane’s main claim to fame is its purported ability to increase neurogenesis, reduce cognitive decline, and even regrow damaged nerves.

Studies in fact show that Lion’s Mane can:

The majority of Lion’s Mane customers aren’t interested in reducing decline. They want a boost. They want increased focus, improved cognition, more and better neurons. Judging from the reversal of cognitive decline in the elderly and the flood of online anecdotes about improved focus and cognition, I  suspect that there’s something there.

That said, another common side effect I’ve heard about from many of the same people lauding its cognitive effects is reduced libido. So keep an eye out for that one.

You know how I do things here. I can’t in good faith make definitive claims based on mouse studies that show this or that mushroom improving memory, blasting tumor cells, and increasing sexual virility. Still, I also can’t discount the hundreds (and in some cases, thousands) of years of traditional use of these mushrooms for many of the conditions, nor can I ignore (or write off as “placebo”) the thousands of experimenters out there online deriving major benefits from some of these mushrooms.

The only option, of course, is to try it for yourself, which I may do in the near future (and will write about my findings).

How to Choose a Mushroom Supplement

When you’re buying an adaptogenic mushroom extract, look for products that come from fruiting bodies (actual mushrooms) rather than mycelium (the “roots” of the mushrooms). Fruiting bodies tend to have more of the active constituents than mycelium. Fruiting body extracts will also be more expensive—mushrooms take longer to grow than mycelium—but the added potency makes up for it.

Look for products that list the beta-glucan content, not the polysaccharide content. Beta-glucans are the uniquely active constituents. All beta-glucans are polysaccharides, but not all polysaccharides are beta-glucans.

From the beginning, I’ve loved seeing what Four Sigmatic has done. Our team did a recipe with theirs this week. Check them out, and stay tuned for more on adaptogenic mushrooms here.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear your experiences with adaptogenic mushrooms. Have you tried them? How have they been useful for you (or not)? Thanks for stopping in, everybody.



Zhao H, Zhang Q, Zhao L, Huang X, Wang J, Kang X. Spore Powder of Ganoderma lucidum Improves Cancer-Related Fatigue in Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing Endocrine Therapy: A Pilot Clinical Trial. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:809614.

Futrakul N, Panichakul T, Butthep P, et al. Ganoderma lucidum suppresses endothelial cell cytotoxicity and proteinuria in persistent proteinuric focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) nephrosis. Clin Hemorheol Microcirc. 2004;31(4):267-72.

Smiderle FR, Baggio CH, Borato DG, et al. Anti-inflammatory properties of the medicinal mushroom Cordyceps militaris might be related to its linear (1?3)-?-D-glucan. PLoS ONE. 2014;9(10):e110266.

Lin WH, Tsai MT, Chen YS, et al. Improvement of sperm production in subfertile boars by Cordyceps militaris supplement. Am J Chin Med. 2007;35(4):631-41.

Parcell AC, Smith JM, Schulthies SS, Myrer JW, Fellingham G. Cordyceps Sinensis (CordyMax Cs-4) supplementation does not improve endurance exercise performance. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2004;14(2):236-42.

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