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Sep 22, 2018

For some reason, I've gotten a reputation as a guy who "shines light on his balls".

Perhaps it was this Men's Health magazine article, in which I discuss a form of light therapy called "photobiomodulation" as a way for guys to increase sexual performance, sperm count and testosterone.

Or perhaps it's because I've described on multiple podcasts how I pull down my pants for 20-30 minutes a day while I'm at my desk, and "bathe my balls" in red and near-infrared light, using a device called a "Joovv".

Turns out the benefits of photobiomodulation go far beyond your nether regions. Heck, this recent study even hinted at the fact that perhaps it should actually be banned as an illegal performance-enhancing drug! On today's podcast, I discuss photobiomodulation ins and outs with two experts in the field: Justin Strahan and Scott Nelson.

Not just any man can take his wife's dream and make it a reality. This is just one of the reasons why Justin is so special. Justin's affinity for process and extreme attention to detail is why we are lucky to have him as head of R&D. The two words we would to describe Justin are intuitive and thorough. Prior to inventing and developing the Joovv, he spent his career as an engineer managing design and development teams. He also has six children, and can apparently play drums and trumpet like it's nobody's business.  

Scott is the impetus, power, and energy that set Joovv in motion. As head of commercialization, his ability to metabolize information quickly makes him an irreplaceable asset. The two words we would use to describe Scott are efficient and personable. Prior to cofounding Joovv, he spent his entire professional career in leadership positions with some of the largest medical device companies in the world, including Medtronic, Covidien, Boston Scientific, and C.R. Bard.


During our discussion, you'll discover:

-The intriguing history of photobiomodulation (PBM) and the JOOVV light...11:11

  • All types of health benefits from a wide range of wavelengths.
    • Sunlight is optimal
    • Red (600-670 nanometers); near infrared (800-880 nanometers)
    • Visible Red light is considered near infrared.
    • Far infrared is useful for heating tissue (over 3000 nanometers); you can't see it.
  • Comparing research between red and near-infrared light.
    •  Original PBM devices were lasers. Low-level laser therapy (LLLT)
    • Difference between LED and lasers: light source itself. Laser is a specific wavelength. LED is tight range, but not a coherent beam.
    • Photo medicine is still a niche field. Most older academics say that it's based on laser therapy, younger professionals say with newer LED light, you can deliver the same level of intensity over a much broader treatment area.
  • How is LED light different from sunlight?
    • Americans spend around 93% of their lifetime indoors due to their work and lifestyle.
    • PBM harnesses specific wavelengths; restores healthy function to offset stressors such as wifi, bluetooth, etc.
    • It's similar to supplementing our diets with a smoothie or multivitamin.
    • It doesn't contain the UVA or UVB, blue light, etc.

-The compelling research behind phototherapy for everything from testosterone to collagen to thyroid to muscular recovery and beyond...21:00

  •  Wide-ranging benefits: skin health, muscle recovery, thyroid function.
    • Supported by over 3,000 peer-reviewed manuscripts.
    • Over 200 placebo-controlled trials.
  • Restores natural skin health.
  • Red light is studied for skin health; near infrared often used for joint pain studies.
  • Are JOOVV lights effective for controlling acne?
  • The effect of red lights on the eyes. Will it damage your eyes to stare at a JOOVV, or will it even help them?
    • Proven to help degenerative eyes.
    • Near-infrared a bit more comfortable to the eye.
    • Begin treatment with eyes closed; then open eyes if you feel comfortable.
    • JOOVV elite allows you to use only near-infrared light.
    • JOOVV devices are registered with the FDA, Class 2.
  • How red and infrared light affects collagen production.
    • It increases collagen production, helps restore joint health.
    • Copper and green light have been shown to enhance benefits of light therapy.
  • Can PBM mitigate circadian rhythm or exposure to artificial light?
    • Sun gets a "bad rap"; unfairly associated with skin cancer.
    • Studies prove that red/infrared light increase levels of melatonin.

-Is PBM effective in attaining weight loss?...41:30

  • Not necessarily weight loss, but there is a "slimming effect".
  • Some studies have shown that red light helps in increasing metabolism.
  • Red light has been shown to mitigate the effects of sleep deprivation. 

-Why PBM is now under consideration for classification as a "performance enhancing drug"...41:30

  • Meta-analysis claimed that red light builds up muscle tissue.
  • Near-infrared waves have had a profound impact.

-How PBM affects stem cells...49:30 -The effect of using PBM on your neck for thyroid issues...51:30 -The optimal amount of PBM to which you should expose yourself per day...54:23

  • It's difficult to test the power output of a device.
  • There are many variables that affect the amount of PBM a device is able to put out.
  • Ensure you purchase your device from a reliable, trusted company.
  • JOOVV is ~100 milowatts per sq. cm.
  • Recommended 10-minute treatment about 6" away from the device.

-The differences and benefits of continuous wave vs pulsed frequencies...1:01:20

  • Pulsed means the light turns on and off very rapidly.
  • A bit of ambiguity on the results of pulsed; continuous wave is tried and true.
  • Sunlight is considered to be a continuous wave light.

-Whether the JOOVV produces much EMF or flicker, and if you can actually look at the light without eye damage...1:03:07

  • Household LED lighting is different from PBM. JOOVV lights have AC/DC built in.
  • JOOVV lights mitigate "dirty electricity." 
  • Newer devices are even more effective.

-What kind of things you can combine with photobiomodulation to enhance the effects...1:10:30

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

-Biomat mini -Vielight -Alitura Clay Mask -PulseCenters PEMF -Swannies clear lens blue light blocking glasses -The structured water filter Ben uses -4th Phase Of Water Book by Gerald Pollack

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Do you have questions, thoughts or feedback for Scott, Justin or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply!