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Mar 21, 2020

The author of the New York Times bestselling Genius Foods: Become Smarter, Happier, and More Productive While Protecting Your Brain for Life, previous podcast guest on the episodes: The Surprising Facts About What Bread Does To Your Brain (And What You Can Do About It) and also Why A High-Fat, Ketogenic Diet Chock Full Of Saturated Fat, Coconut Oil & Butter Could Be Destroying Your Brain (& What To Do About It) is back!

His name is Max Lugavere and his new book The Genius Life: Heal Your Mind, Strengthen Your Body, and Become Extraordinary features a lifestyle program for resetting your brain and body to its “factory settings,” to help fight fatigue, anxiety, and depression and to optimize cognitive health for a longer and healthier life.

In The Genius Life, Max expands the Genius Foods plan, which focused on nutrition and how it affects brain health, and expands it to encompass a full lifestyle protocol. We know now that the health of our brains—including our cognitive function and emotional wellness—depend on the health of our gut, endocrine, cardiac and nervous systems as there is a constant feedback loop between all systems.

Drawing on globe-spanning research into circadian biology, psychology, dementia prevention, cognitive optimization, and exercise physiology, The Genius Life shows how to integrate healthy choices in all aspects of our daily routines: eating, exercising, sleeping, detoxing, and more to create a healthy foundation for optimal cognitive health and performance. Among Max’s groundbreaking findings, you will discover:

· A trick that gives you the equivalent of a “marathon” workout, in 10 minutes

· How to get the benefits of an extra 1-2 servings of veggies daily without eating them

· The hidden chemicals in your home that could be making you fat and sick

· How to boost melatonin levels by up to 58% for deeper sleep without supplements

Max is a filmmaker, health and science journalist and author. He is also the host of the #1 iTunes health podcast The Genius Life. Lugavere appears regularly on the Dr. Oz Show, the Rachael Ray Show, and The Doctors. He has contributed to Medscape, Vice, Fast Company, CNN, and the Daily Beast, has been featured on NBC Nightly News, The Today Show, and in The New York Times and People Magazine.

He is an internationally sought-after speaker and has given talks at South by Southwest, TEDx, the New York Academy of Sciences, the Biohacker Summit in Stockholm, Sweden, and many others...

During our discussion, you'll discover:

-Just how bad is bread?...8:08

  • It's one of humanity's oldest and most revered processed foods
  • Max's views have softened slightly over the years
  • Grains can serve a functional purpose
    • Glycogen storage
    • Help to power through resistance training
  • Not as toxic as made out to be, but not the most ideal option available
  • Changed views on brown rice
  • Preparation methods are important
  • Avoid GMO forms of GMO foods
  • No such thing as a one size fits all diet, nor an exercise regimen
  • Increased carbs in the diet may lead to increased strength (performance enhancing tool)

-How Max's views on MDMA have evolved over the years...19:45

  • Being used to treat PTSD; given "breakthrough drug" status by the FDA
  • Being used to treat alcoholism, autism
  • Chronically dangerous to the brain; imbalance in neurotransmitters
  • Serotonin is modulated w/ MDMA
  • Acute doses are limited in potential harm; benefits outweigh the risks
  • Psilocybin can reduce activity in default mode network in the brain
  • Can damage mitochondria when consumed in large amounts
  • Dr. John Lieurance's glutathione/antioxidant suppositories (code: BEN)

-Max's overall goal in writing The Genius Life...29:00

  • The goal was to help people identify diseases such as dementia or cancer years or decades before they manifest physically
  • Genius Foods was to identify which foods affect the brain
  • We're essentially in "The Hunger Games" books
  • Sedentary, addicted to devices, rampant stress, circadian rhythms are out of sync
  • The default state of any organism is health; our society is anything but healthy
  • Max's mom developed dementia at a young age; was eventually diagnosed w/ pancreatic cancer
  • Conditions don't develop overnight
  • Prevention is not discussed by and large in mainstream medicine
  • Cachexia: extreme muscle wasting
  • Certain cancers are hormonally related
  • Book: Eat To Beat Disease by William Li

-Fish consumption and optimizing brain health...46:00

  • Fear of consuming mercury w/ fish is overblown; the benefits outweigh the risks
  • Selenium: mercury ratio in fish is key
  • People who eat more fish have better health; protection against Alzheimers
  • Women who eat more fish have smarter kids
  • Oily fish (wild salmon, mackerel, sardines) are preferable
  • Lifestyle considerations:

-Healthy detoxification...51:26

-Why Max advocates increasing protein intake...55:45

  • Confusing mechanism w/ outcomes
  • The benefits outweigh the risks
  • Calorie restriction is how to enhance longevity
  • Reasons to increase protein:
    • In old age, double the allowance helps maintain muscle mass
    • Inverse relationship between increased protein and amyloid plaque
  • More protein = less carbs and fat
  • Protein leverage hypothesis: hunger mechanisms are leveraged by need for essential amino acids
  • Protein is the most satiating of the macronutrients; metabolic advantage
  • Very nutrient-dense foods
  • Having more muscle mass is crucial for longevity
  • Ensure protein you consume is buffered w/ collagen or the amino acids contained therein
  • Book: The Switch by James Clement
  • BGF podcast w/ Wild Health MD
  • Supplement w/ magnesium

-Max's big wins regarding biohacking, food prep, etc...1:05:08

  • Drink clean water
  • Time spent in nature
    • 30 minutes of sunlight in the morning
    • Suprachiasmatic nucleus controls circadian rhythms
    • 20 minutes in nature can reduce cortisol levels
  • Staying active
    • 2 minutes of activity for every 30 minutes sedentary can reset the blood flow to the brain
    • Fascia is a piezoelectric tissue
    • Foam roller, deep tissue work can be mildly addicting

-Max's favorite workout regimens...1:13:45

  • Resistance and strength training
  • Cut back on carbs, lost efficacy in strength training
  • Not a fan of steady-state cardio; lots of NEAT throughout the day
  • Staying active boosts lymph fluids
  • Keep protein intake up: 1.6 g/kg of lean mass
  • High intensity repeat training
  • Joe Rogan podcast w/ Pavel Tsatsouline
  • You can have a great body w/out obsessing over fitness
  • Be more present with your food; distractions while eating can increase calorie consumption

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

- BGF podcasts w/ Max Lugavere:

- The Genius Life: Heal Your Mind, Strengthen Your Body, and Become Extraordinary

- Genius Foods: Become Smarter, Happier, and More Productive While Protecting Your Brain for Life

- Gluten intolerance and glyphosate link

- Dr. John Lieurance's glutathione/antioxidant suppositories (use code BEN at checkout for a 5% discount)

- Role of the Microbiome as the First Metal Detoxification Mechanism

- Book: Eat To Beat Disease by William Li

- BGF podcast w/ Dr. William Li

- BGF podcast w/ Wild Health MD

- Book: The Switch by James Clement

- Total Dissolved Solids meter

- Quinton hypertonic minerals (use code GREENFIELD10)

Episode sponsors:

-Kion Creatine: You can grab your own Kion Creatine now at and save 20% off your first order with discount code: BGF20

-JOOVV: After using the Joovv for close to 2 years, it's the only light therapy device I'd ever recommend. Give it a try: you won't be disappointed. Order using my link and receive my brand new book, Boundless absolutely free!

-Beekeeper's NaturalsA wellness company specializing in innovative nutraceuticals made from healing hive compounds and plant-based ingredients. Get 15% off your order when you use discount code: BEN

-Organifi GlowA plant-based beverage that helps support the body’s natural ability to produce collagen, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and protect the skin from sun exposure and toxins. Receive a 20% discount on your entire order when you use discount code: "BENG20"

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