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November 2, 2020

How to use peptides safely with Dr. Miles Spar

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Dr. Miles Spar, the Medical Director for Vault Health is an expert in men's health. On Episode 458 of the 40+ Fitness Podcast, we discuss peptides, what they are, how they work, and how to safely use them to improve your health and fitness.

Transcript

Let's Say Hello

[00:02:16.050] – Allan
Rachel, how you doing?

[00:02:18.120] – Rachel
Great. Allan, how are you today?

[00:02:20.850] – Allan
I'm doing good. You know, we're doing a lot of people might not know about the behind the scenes part of a podcast. We record these intros in this discussion sometimes a week or two or three ahead of when an actual episode airs. And so in this case, we're recording a few weeks ahead because I'm planning a trip to the United States to see family get my crap out of my daughter's garage and then, of course, to vote. And so I'm pretty excited about that.

[00:02:47.700] – Allan
You know, we got into covid. I was a little concerned. You know, my mother and her mother are not in the best of health and my stepmother isn't either. So, you know, with this thing and all the ramifications of being an at-risk person, you know, it's one of those things you're thinking about on a pretty regular basis when you're sitting around in your apartment with nothing else to do, which is why I go back and listen to that Slip-to-Success Episode, because that's really where my head was, is that I might not see our parents again.

[00:03:17.790] – Allan
So it's a little daunting, but I'm happy to be going back to get some of my stuff out of my daughter's garage and ship some of it down here. We started pricing that out. And it's you have to in your head, justify do I really want to pay that much to ship that thing, to have it down here? And I'm hopeful the answer for a lot of that is no. But you know how things go when you're trying to get rid of things that you own.

[00:03:41.850] – Allan
You end up toting them with you.

[00:03:43.680] – Rachel
Oh, for sure. I'm glad you get to come up and visit your family. It sounds wonderful.

[00:03:49.080] – Allan
Well, how are things going for you?

[00:03:50.370] – Rachel
Oh, good, good. The weather's been great. It's been great for running in the mornings and we just got a new weight set for our gym. So I'm excited to unwrap everything and get to it.

[00:04:01.500] – Allan
OK, tell us about that.

[00:04:03.390] – Rachel
We bought an Olympic bar and a full set of weights, so we've got everything from forty-five down to two and a half and just excited to get it all out. It took about six or eight weeks I think, to get here. So we've been anxiously awaiting like a little much, but yeah, we can't wait to get it unwrapped.

[00:04:23.190] – Allan
Well, that's that's one of the things, as you know, covid came along and people wanted to start training at home. They're like, well, I could outfit a home gym, but you got to start, you know, figuring out the equipment and then you go to buy the equipment. Well, you're not the only one. And so a lot of these places stocked out. I was looking at a Concept2 rower because back in June, I didn't necessarily want to wait all the way until like January when I could go back and get because I have a little rower. It's not a Concept2. But I was thinking I'd just buy a Concept2 and ship that down here and then I'll sell my rower up there. But they had a waiting list and I was like, well, OK, I'll just if I, if I have a waiting list, I may as well wait. You know, it was a shame. So but that. Good, good, good. You have to let us know how it goes.

[00:05:07.050] – Rachel
For sure. Absolutely.

[00:05:08.400] – Allan
Post pictures on Facebook.

[00:05:10.140] – Rachel
Absolutely.

[00:05:11.520] – Allan
All right. So one more thing. I do have to let you know, we're recording this interview, Dr. Spar on peptides. And just for full disclosure, Vault Health, which is the company that Dr. Spar founded and works for, is a sponsor of the show. So if you do visit Vault Health, I do want you to know that we get a little bit of a kickback on that if you schedule your call and get on your call.

[00:05:37.950] – Allan
They do. They do pay us for that referral, but it doesn't cost you any more. And I'm not telling you that's who you need to go to or that you even need to do peptides. But I wanted to have an episode out there because so many people will start hearing about this. And it sounds really magical and it sounds really cool, but there's some pitfalls. So how about we go ahead and get into the episode? And Rachel, I will be right back with you afterwards.

Interview

[00:06:46.140] – Allan
Dr. Spar, welcome to 40+ Fitness.

[00:06:48.720] – Dr.Spar
Thanks, Allan. Great to be here.

[00:06:50.670] – Allan
You know, today we're going to talk about peptides. And I as I kind of follow the health and fitness space, I, I tend to put one foot out there in the area I call biohacking, just kind of know maybe what's going to be coming down the line five years, ten years down the line. But that curve is accelerating.

[00:07:12.600] – Allan
You used to hear about something and say, OK, when's that going to hit mainstream? And it would be a generation later, like with some medications. And then you'd hear about this new thing bodybuilders were doing and it would be mainstream maybe five years later. And now I can listen to a podcast like Ben Greenfield or Dave Asbury. And they were talking about SARMs a year ago, two years ago or three years ago.

[00:07:37.140] – Allan
And it was happening then and then. Now times, you know, I think a lot of the things that we're calling biohacking are actually coming so fast and getting mainstream so quickly with technology we have and the communications we have. It's really kind of amazing what's happening right now.

[00:07:54.330] – Dr.Spar
It is. It's exciting and a little bit overwhelming. So I love that you have the podcast because it's really hard to separate the wheat from the chaff and to know it's the what isn't, what's safe, what isn't and what's proven. And like you said, it's good when things move fast, but it also means sometimes we don't have all the data yet. So it's great to kind of talk about, well, what do we know and what do we not know that you need to watch out for?

[00:08:16.740] – Allan
Yeah, and even in 2020, we still have snake oil salesmen.

[00:08:21.370] – Dr.Spar
Obviously.

[00:08:22.170] – Allan
They come to town and try to sell us something that isn't going to help us at all.

[00:08:26.070] – Dr.Spar
Yes, especially on fitness. That's a big one. You know, one of the number ones where you get questionable recommendations and products.

[00:08:33.870] – Allan
Because we're eager to do something and everybody likes that easy button concept of what's what's the one thing I can do. And I'd love to say, yeah, say maybe one day science will figure that out, but we don't quite have it. But peptides are really, really interesting to me because you're literally going in and the way I understand it and correct me if I'm saying this wrong, but I can think of your genetic code is like an operating system for our body.

[00:09:03.030] – Allan
And in general, it's going to function and do certain things. Yet we can introduce things like peptides in there, which then basically turns on and off or dimmer switch. However, you want to kind of look at it in your head the way that our genetic code is working and cause our body to do things good or bad. I mean, but most of what we're going to try to do here is some good.

[00:09:26.610] – Dr.Spar
Yeah, I think it's a good way of putting it, actually, because peptides, basically they're signaling molecules. Right? So they're different from exogenous hormones or hormones you take in or separately, even though it's confusing to some peptides or hormones. But in general, when we think about hormones, we think of instead of relying on the body to produce something like testosterone, we're going to give testosterone because the body isn't producing enough or for whatever reason or even using growth hormone, which we'll talk about later, just taking extra growth hormone.

[00:09:54.660] – Dr.Spar
And that's a little more of a big hammer, right? Because you're just basically saying, yeah, we're not signaling the genetic code, like you said. We're just basically saying, yeah, whatever you genes turn off, we got this. Peptides are a little more elegant. They rely on the body's own natural rhythms and their natural processes of when they're going to produce something like a hormone. And yet it helps to coax them to maybe do that at a little higher volume.

[00:10:20.400] – Dr.Spar
Just like you said, I love that the dimmer switch. It's a great way of putting it.

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[00:11:58.710] – Allan
Now, I remember reading about SARMS a few years ago and thinking, OK, this is kind of interesting cutting edge stuff, but you had to basically, if you went, looked online for what SARMS were, they'd say, yeah, we'll sell you this. But it's not for human consumption. You know, what? Why are you selling it to someone that's not a scientist? But they were. What's the difference between SARMS and peptides?

[00:12:21.240] – Dr.Spar
Sure. They're actually they're actually really different. So peptides are chains of amino acids, proteins, which are what most enzymes and a lot of hormones and a lot of substances in the bodies are large chains of amino acids. But peptides are smaller chains of about 50 amino acids or less. And like I said, they're signalling molecules. So they're naturally produced in the body. And that's a key thing because SARMs are synthetic peptides are all naturally produced in the body. There's about 7000 that are naturally produced and some of them are also made available to use as well to give yourself or to take.

[00:12:57.750] – Dr.Spar
And about 60 are actually approved by the FDA. And these have the same type of impacts as hormones in that whatever their direct thing that they are coaxing along will cause that thing they're coaxing along to have a broader impact. So the peptides themselves are very elegant. They're very specific to like one hormone or one chain in a pathway that they will stimulate. But it's really only that one thing that they'll stimulate. So, for example, we'll talk later about peptides that stimulate growth hormone release.

[00:13:31.230] – Dr.Spar
That's really all they do. They don't have by their actions. And then they rely on the impact of growth hormone to have a bunch of actions and example of peptides that many people might have heard of are these GLP1 agonist for diabetes like Victoza or Semaglutide or Ozempic? These are newer medications for diabetes that help with weight loss that are great. And they really only work on this glucagon-like peptide that they stimulate the release of and that then helps a lot with insulin sensitivity.

[00:14:01.200] – Dr.Spar
Whereas SARMs. They're are actually synthetic. They're small molecules like peptides. That's really the only thing that's the same. And the reason that they're selective, like we used to have SERMs, a selective estrogen receptor modulators, the SARMs are selective androgen receptor said the surge or things like tamoxifen and related estrogens. These are ones that are related to androgens, but they're selective in that. Hormones like androgens are hormones by definition means a hormone has impacts all over the body.

[00:14:30.720]
Right. So that's what defines a hormone when you learn in med school a hormone, basically something that goes everywhere to every kind of tissue. So SARMs say, well, we don't really want to have impact all over the body for certain things that we're really trying to build muscle. We want something to be androgenic and muscle, but we don't want it to affect the liver and the kidney and the testes and shut down testicle production of testosterone. We want to just to really focus on building muscle or maybe also fat to lose some fat.

[00:14:57.630] – Dr.Spar
So that's what SARMs are meant to do. They're actually broader molecules that look a lot like bigger hormones, but they're designed to specifically have less widespread impact than a whole hormone or whole steroid would be.

[00:15:15.690] – Allan
It was interesting because when I was first reading about SARMs, I think, you know, the broad interest in this was how do I gain muscle? How do I lose fat? How to get more growth hormone, which also helps improve both of those. It was interesting to find out that there are peptides that can actually improve our immune function, which I think at the time of COVID. That's huge. Can you talk a little bit about that peptide or those the class of peptides and what they do?

[00:15:43.680] – Dr.Spar
Yeah, absolutely. That's a big interest right now. And there's some really good studies on some of these peptides helping the immune system. I don't want to say that these are cures for COVID, but these are anything that really we can make specific claims related to COVID about because there haven't been studies were uncovered. However, there are some good studies in some of these with virus in general in helping boost the immune system as it protects us from viruses. So the main ones are ones that are initially produced from the thymus gland.

[00:16:14.880] – Dr.Spar
We all have a thymus gland, but it involutes as we age in that thymus gland is what really produces a lot of our immune system. Cells are T-cells are named after our thymus land and those are the some of the important cells, our immune system. And they also help not only just produce these T-cells, but they help tell the T-cells how to operate and how to do what they do best. And yet over time, that thymus gland, like I said, invalutes.

[00:16:38.280] – Dr.Spar
And so it gets less active. So these peptides, especially one called Thymosin Alpha One, and you'll see it abbreviated TA1, really is something that naturally is produced in the thymus clan, but it's produced less and less as we age. So when you're over 40, have less of it. Yet it's very helpful to boost this type. The immunity called cell-mediated immunity, these T-cells, immunity that are really the most important arm of our immune system against viruses, we have like the antibody arm, which are great for bacteria and help a little bit with viruses.

[00:17:06.930] – Dr.Spar
And that's what vaccines help with. But really for viruses, we really need this thymus that this T-cell arm, the cell-mediated immunity arm. And that's what times an alpha one helps, helps boost production of these T-cells and helps them mature better and helps teach them what to go against, what not to do. So they're actually used in autoimmune diseases because it helps teach the immune system. This Thymosin Alpha One does teaches the immune system.

[00:17:32.340] – Dr.Spar
What's something that really we want to attack and what's our own self that we don't want to attack? And that's an autoimmune disease, right when you're attacking yourself. So they're used in viruses and autoimmunity and allergies. And then they also help, even with chronic infections like Lyme is a big one or chronic fatigue syndrome. That is unclear at Epstein Bar, which is another virus or Lyme.

[00:17:53.790]
So, Thymosin Alpha One is the main one that we see very well studied. It's actually used in as a pharmaceutical. It's approved in over 70 countries around the world. So it's not a way out there. It doesn't happen to be FDA approved in this country for a lot of things, but it's a very safe peptide to use.

[00:18:10.980] – Dr.Spar
The other one you hear about less so, but to some degree it's called Thymosin Beta Four. So I mentioned Thymosin Alpha One and this one is Thymosin Beta Four. That also has some immune-modulating activities, but that's more around cancer care that's used. And so I would really say for listeners that are interested in boosting immunity in a really sophisticated way, the Thymosin Alpha One is the way to go.

[00:18:35.680] – Allan
Another area which I found kind of interesting and as I was reading the story on this is the guy just sort of accidentally somewhat overdosed, I guess. He shot himself up some peptides and he found himself in a position of excitement for about eight hours.

[00:18:54.300] – Dr.Spar
Yeah.

[00:18:55.270] – Allan
And so there are actually peptides that can improve your libido. Could you talk to them?

[00:19:00.300] – Dr.Spar
Yeah, this is really exciting. And it's something that, like you said, it was found accidentally. So it's interesting. One of the hormones that leads to melanin in your skin and helps to promote skin pigment actually as a precursor to ACTH, which is a hormone that many of your listeners might know about, comes from the hypothalamus pituitary gland that can produce this hormone that produces skin darkening, but also the precursor to that hormone that produces skin darkening is called Melanotan.

[00:19:35.730] – Dr.Spar
And that also actually helps with libido and erectile function from essentially acting way from a nerve stimulating erections as opposed to like Viagra and PDE5 inhibitors. Those all help promote vascular flow, right? So they help with the blood vessel part of erections. These help with the central nervous system being turned on. So it's all a nerve part of not just erections, but libido. And in fact, when they study this and they found the form that doesn't cause as much skin darkening because the first form just cause a lot of skin darkening and the libido isn't really helpful unless you really want to have really, really, really dark skin.

[00:20:14.070] – Dr.Spar
So they found this basically it's Melanotan two, and they found this substance called PT141 or Bremelanotide, which is a derivative of Melanotan two and works the same way and stimulates this libido very strongly. They actually have it as an FDA approved medication for women with hypoactive sexual desire, especially post-menopause, because it works in men and women, because it's working in the brain, it's not working in the penis. It's working in the brain. I'm getting you turned on and that helps libido and it helps with erections.

[00:20:45.330] – Dr.Spar
And especially helpful, though, off label, so to speak, for guys who have maybe tried Viagra or PDE5 inhibitors. And they're still not getting good erections because they're just not into it. And it's more of a mojo thing than just a blood flow thing. So these are very powerful and getting you turned on, you inject them or you do an intranasal an hour or so before sex.

[00:21:07.740] – Dr.Spar
And like I said, it's an FDA approved drug for women. For men, we use it as well. It has some side effects to watch for. It can cause a little bit of nausea that's usually fleeting and some flushing. And it's not recommended for guys with really high blood pressure. But other than that, it's really well-tolerated and it works wonders in guys who are really frustrated because they've tried ordering Viagra online and they're still like, yeah, whatever.

[00:21:29.820] – Dr.Spar
I don't even want to take it because I'm just not into it or I take it and I still don't really get an erection because I'm just I'm not into it. And this is works at that at that central nervous system level.

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[00:22:56.560] – Allan
Now, I guess, you know, and of course, this is going to be the exciting one, is that there are quite a few peptides that can actually increase our growth hormone, which is another one of those hormones that declines as we age.

[00:23:11.710] – Dr.Spar
Yeah, and growth hormone know, I'm sure your listeners know, growth hormone and it's kind of like the fountain of youth in a way, because it really does. Growth hormone is really responsible for muscle growth and fat loss and helping us feel more energetic, helping us sleep better, helping us with brain cognition. And it does decline as you age. It's also impacted by lifestyle factors. So things that help boost your own production of growth hormone, like getting enough sleep and intermittent fasting, are really helpful.

[00:23:41.630] – Dr.Spar
You produce most of it at night when you sleep. So if you eat a lot of food close to bed, you're going to blunt your production growth hormone. If you don't get enough sleep, you're going to blunt your production of growth hormone. So anything you do first has to be on this foundation of watching, not eating a lot. Ideally, then you might intermittent fasting and making sure you're getting enough sleep and managing stress because all that impacts it. But even with all that, some guys get frustrated that not doing the same workout I've been doing, but now I'm making less gains or I'm losing muscle mass and they get testosterone checked and that's fine.

[00:24:12.730] – Dr.Spar
So then they think about growth hormone. The problem is, I've never really advocated using growth hormone itself because I kind of said at the beginning of the show, it's not very elegant to just take over of growth hormone and give your body a big boost of it, because the way it works is in this pulsatile fashion, it works best when it's produced a lot at night. And then that's when your body's, say, recovering from a workout and responding to that workout by building up bigger muscle cells and building up muscle and hypertrophy in the muscle. That's how you get bigger muscle.

[00:24:42.640] – Dr.Spar
And then it goes down as the day goes on during the day and comes up at various times in the day. And you want that normal circadian rhythm of production. If you just give yourself HGH, human growth hormone, it kind of takes over that and it actually then makes the growth hormone work less well over time because the body gets kind of sensitized to it. So that's where peptides are much more elegant because all they do, the peptides that help stimulate growth hormones, own natural production, get their effect by relying on that same natural pulsatile flow.

[00:25:13.120] – Dr.Spar
So giving peptides that produce a little more growth hormone from their own body relies on the body's natural production and doesn't make the body get sensitised to it, doesn't destroy that normal circadian rhythm, and also doesn't come with some of the risks that we worry about of constantly adding growth hormone, like a concern about cancer risk or blood sugar being too high. So these are really helpful and safe ways to boost your own body's natural production of growth hormone.

[00:25:40.630] – Allan
Yeah, it's the more I read into hormones, the more I actually realize I'm never going to fully understand the endocrine system and how it works, because it's just I mean, of course, there's entire professions, entire doctors that just focus on endocrine. So it makes sense that it's not something I'm going to just pick up from reading a few books and articles.

[00:26:00.940] – Dr.Spar
No, you have to go to the doctor for sure. And I'm just going to go in the weeds a little more on the growth hormone. What about some specific so listeners can really know what to ask for. And again, this is all things you do through your medical practitioner. You can certainly do it with us at Vault Health or someone else, but don't do this on your own. But so it does get a little complicated growth hormone. So the way it works is this your body, right, stimulates its own production growth hormone from the pituitary gland.

[00:26:29.470] – Dr.Spar
However, the peptides that help release that, if you just take a peptide that is called the growth hormone-releasing hormone that just tells the body make more growth hormone. And the examples of that are like, Sermorelin people might have heard of or Tesamorelin, which is also which is actually a pharmaceutical called Egrifta approved for HIV lipodystrophy and or something called CJC1295, which is the newest generation. Those are great and they actually do help and they can help with decreasing fat and increasing muscle and energy and even cognition.

[00:27:04.510] – Dr.Spar
However, the body will naturally see, Oh wait we're stimulating too much growth hormone. We're going to put a brake on that. And the brain will make something called somatostatin, which basically, “statin” is stopping kind of and “somato” is body. So it's like stop this body-building hormone because we don't want a lot of growth hormone all the time. So you so it stops the release of that extra growth hormone that was produced. So you want to also take something that helps overcome a little bit of that somatostatin so that what extra growth hormone was produced actually gets released.

[00:27:37.300] – Dr.Spar
So that's another category, these first growth hormone peptides and the main ones called Ipamorelin. And so you couple that with like the CJC1295 so that the CJC1295 coaxes the body, again it's a signaling molecule, make a little more growth hormone when it's appropriate to make growth hormone. And then the Ipamorelin says yeah you somatostatin trying to stop the release that chillout, let's release some of this and it together works really well and helping make sure you produce a little more and you release it at the appropriate time.

[00:28:12.630] – Allan
Yeah, and so once you start getting to stacks and things like that, we're trying to fine tune a human genome. We're trying to get some improvement, some optimization out of our aging as we go. But there are side effects. As you mentioned, the one for libido caused some skin darkening. There are some things you have to consider.

[00:28:41.060] – Dr.Spar
Yes.

[00:28:41.820] – Allan
This isn't a do it yourself at home chemistry experiment.

[00:28:45.180] – Dr.Spar
Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, a lot of them, they all have their own because these are really elegant molecules. And so they all have very specific effects, like I said, different from bigger molecules or bigger proteins. They all have an effect on kind of one pathway. They all have different side effects. And so it's really important to talk to your practitioner about this specific peptide that we're talking about. What are the potential side effects?

[00:29:07.830] – Dr.Spar
So like some of the growth hormone ones, you can get a little water retention. You can even get a little like numbness or tingling in your arms. And usually if you decrease the dose that goes away. But we used to see that in higher doses, people were using like almost like a carpal tunnel syndrome. For most people, they help with sleep, but for some people, it causes them sleeplessness because it gets some kind of revved up.

[00:29:31.380] – Dr.Spar
So that just we usually say, well, use it a couple hours earlier and that can help with that. The ones that also for growth hormone can raise your blood sugar a little bit. So that's something to watch for, not to the point of creating diabetes. But if you already have high blood sugar, it's something to watch for. And then, like I said, the ones for libido, the Bremelanotide can cause a little nausea and a lot of people. But it's a very short acting and it's not to the point of vomiting. It's just like a flushing kind of wave. But it can also cause some swelling as well.

[00:30:00.180] – Dr.Spar
So, yeah, they each have their own set of side effects. The big one is, like I said, high blood pressure with bremelanotide to watch for and then the darkening with that. But in general, they're really well tolerated. They're very safe. They're not causing side effects you don't aren't aware of because they're so small and elegant and targeted that they're not causing liver damage and kidney damage that can happen if you start using even some SARMs that aren't so safe, that are synthetic or some growth hormone itself or some of these other bigger, more wide-ranging effect type molecules.

[00:30:34.830] – Allan
Dr. Spar, I define wellness as being the healthiest, fittest, and happiest you can be. What are three strategies or tactics to get and stay?

[00:30:42.360] – Dr.Spar
Well, so have a really hard time narrowing it down to three. So I might add. But I'll tell you the first one and I did a TEDx talk about this, it sounds really, really woo woo. But it's really the most important is the first tactic to being fit is why do you want to be fit? You know, the first tactic to being healthy is why do you want your health for? Because as soon as there's a donut available, when you had said, I'm not going to eat donuts, unless you're clear why you committed to not having donuts and being more healthy, you're going to eat that donut.

[00:31:14.610] – Dr.Spar
You know, you need to really be clear on. I want to be healthier for my kids to be a role model. I want to be a better partner and feel more sexy. For me to feel more sexy, I need to have a little bit better physique or I want to feel stronger so I can beat people on the basketball court, whatever it is.

[00:31:32.040] – Dr.Spar
Why is it that you want to be fit and healthy? You need to literally sit down and think about it? It doesn't take that long, but studies show people who have a clear sense of why they're doing so, they are much more likely to do it. So that's number one.

[00:31:44.550] – Dr.Spar
The second I would say we hear a lot about diet and exercise and those are important. So I'm not going to include those. Since we all know that, I'd say stress and sleep are the other two and I worked with NBA basketball players is like an integrative medicine consultant. And those are the two biggest issues for them. And these are obviously very high-level fit guys. And they would find what would undermine their fitness was if they weren't managing stress. We talked a lot about apps that you can download, like Headspace or Calm are the ones how manage stress or journaling or doing some kind of meditation or prayer or even something that helps you every day, even if it's five or ten minutes. Tell your body I'm not in fight or flight mode, because if you're trying to be fair, fight or flight motos, your body.

[00:32:26.880] – Dr.Spar
Oh, no, no blood to the muscles. We need to we need to be supporting responding and we're going to store up sugar as fat because we're in crisis. So we're not going to be making sure that we're lean. We're making sure that we're just able to respond and not manage our immune system and our digestion. So managing stress is key. And then sleep is a huge issue for guys, especially where they think, oh, yeah, I can get away with five, six hours a night.

[00:32:52.320] – Dr.Spar
And really about five percent of the population can deal with less than seven hours a night on average. Ninety-five percent really need seven to nine hours to not tell the body we need to be in crisis mode and we need to store more fat. And you're just not going to be as healthy and you're going to have early cognitive changes. So. I would say identify why you want to be healthier, fit, manage your stress and make sure you're getting good quality sleep.

[00:33:17.930] – Allan
Perfect. Love those. Thank you.

[00:33:20.270] – Allan
Now you can go to 40plusfitnesspodcast/vault and Dr. Spar or one of his fellow doctors there will have a free consult to talk to you about peptides and some of the other opportunities. Do you want to kind of go a little bit into what the call is about and how they work?

[00:33:38.390] – Dr.Spar
Sure. Yeah, absolutely. You know, we created Vault Health because we felt there needs to be mental health specialists that are more available. Women have gynecologists, which is great and very needed, but guys haven't had like somebody who gets guys. So a lot of guys don't have anywhere to go when they want to perform better. I want to be more fit. I don't want to just be not broken. They go to the regular doctor and they get an annual physical to make sure they're not broken.

[00:34:02.390] – Dr.Spar
But usually that doctor isn't really looking further to how can I perform better? How can I really make sure that I am not feeling my age as much as I do? And that's what we're all about. So we are a national network of men's health specialists that really get guys who are trying to achieve goals that better. We break down performance into physical performance, sexual performance, and cognitive performance because those are the three areas we really see guys wanting help with.

[00:34:28.310] – Dr.Spar
And then we find out what is it that you want help with? Let's look and see. Do we need to do any bloodwork to look further or have you already had bloodwork done and then you don't need it? And then is it hormone therapy like testosterone or peptide therapy? Like a lot of the ones we've talked about, we have other ones we didn't even mention that help with brain health or are there other things to help with energy, to help with sexual function, libido?

[00:34:48.380] – Dr.Spar
So we really offer a suite of solutions that are personalized to what that guy really wants. But it all starts with that telehealth visit with a men's health specialist.

[00:34:57.770] – Allan
All right. You can go to 40plusfitnesspodcast.com/vault if you want to learn more about Vault Health and if you want to get to the show notes for this episode, they're at 40plusfitnesspodcast.com/458.

[00:35:10.850] – Allan
Dr. Spar, thank you so much for being a part of 40+ Fitness.

[00:35:15.470] – Dr.Spar
Thank you, Allan. It's great. I really appreciate it.

Post Show/Recap

[00:35:23.190] – Allan
Rachel, welcome back.

[00:35:24.480] – Rachel
Yeah, how are you doing, Allan?

[00:35:26.490] – Allan
Good, good. I'm really glad I had that opportunity to have that conversation with Dr. Spar, because, I've always said on here I don't like the term biohacking because most of the biomarkers that you'll hear out there and I'm not going to name names, but the ones that are on that cutting edge, a lot of them are trying this stuff on their own before they really know what it is.

[00:35:50.640] – Allan
And we can look back at bodybuilder's and say, OK, you know, they're bodybuilders in the 60s, 70s and 80s and 90s that we're doing all these steroids. And some of them are just fine. One of them became governor of California and had that great acting career. And, you know, they're fine and did well into their 70s. Others weren't so fine. Some of them had heart attacks. Some of them had roid rage issues.

[00:36:13.800] – Allan
There's a whole variety of issues. And until enough of this stuff happens, until it's gone on and enough people have been engaged using these things, we really don't know how someone's going to be effected. That's how clinical trials work, is that they start out with a few people and then they add a few more people and then see that it's working. And then they put a whole bunch of people through. And when I say a whole bunch, we're talking tens of thousands.

[00:36:38.520] – Allan
And then from that they start gathering information. Is this safe? Will this kill you? And then that's where you get that whole legal mumbo jumbo at the end of an ad for the purple pill or whatever is because this is X number of people had this problem. X number of people committed suicide or had thoughts of suicide. X number of people had that problem. So how you're going to be affected by potential chemical? I think that you're putting your body in this case that happens to be an amino acid.

[00:37:08.550] – Allan
So it sounds benign, but steroids seemed kind of benign when they first started using them. And sometimes they're just not. And especially when you start getting into things like growth hormone, because there are things we don't mind growing. We don't mean growing that muscle and bone and those types of things. But there's things we don't want growing like cancer. And I'm not saying that peptides cause cancer or that peptides could promote cancer. I'm just saying that when you go to these places online and you go to order it and you receive it, I'm going to tell you right now they'll tell you it's not for human consumption, it's for testing purposes.

[00:37:49.080] – Allan
And for the most part, it should be animal testing. I think we're past the animal testing stage at this point with peptides, because I was hearing about peptides five, six years ago. So there's a lot more known about them now than there was then. But you still want to be working with a medical professional. So rather you're working with Dr. Spar at Vault Health or you find someone else that you want to work with on these. It's important for you to work with the doctor, make sure you're getting these things from a reputable compounding pharmacy and play it safe.

[00:38:20.040] – Allan
You know, we all want to get better. But I can tell you, there is no magic pill. These things can help, but there is no magic pill.

[00:38:28.440] – Rachel
Isn't that the truth? Yeah. Peptide sound really intriguing. It sounds like another interesting supplement that's worth trying. And as he had mentioned about some already existing that are tailored for improving immune function. That sounds wonderful, but I have to agree that with any supplementation, it's always best to have the supervision of a doctor. And it's not even the known side effects. There's also unknown side effects and you just don't know how you as an individual patient are going to react.

[00:38:59.550] – Rachel
So that's why it's best to have a doctor keeping an eye on you as you try something new. But, yeah, be interesting to see how this plays out. Maybe in another couple of years as they get better with the science and use of it.

[00:39:12.570] – Allan
Yeah, and that's what's happening right now. You've got doctors in a clinical setting or you've got doctors like with Vault Health that get on the phone with you. They'll do blood tests where they need to do blood tests. They'll listen to what your health history is and other things that you're going through. And then they'll be able to prescribe something that is appropriate to you. You'll then receive it knowing you can trust what you're getting. You can try it.

[00:39:38.190] – Allan
But like with everything, you know, somebody will try a medicine and it doesn't work. And so the doctor will say, well, let's change the prescription and try it this way. This is going to be no different than that. You're just basically trying a peptide rather than a medicine. But that's not to say there's not some negative effects to using peptides.

[00:39:58.290] – Rachel
Oh, for sure. You know, as as we do get older, these little things crop up and it's you know, you just need to make sure you're not trading one set of problems for another set of problems with the different supplementation peptides or anything else. And again, I still refer to the experts who might know you a little better as a patient and what you can tolerate and in the can they can just keep an eye on. You as you try these things.

[00:40:23.970] – Allan
Absolutely. So, Rachel, we are rolling up on the end of the year for Thanksgiving. Actually, I think as we're recording this, I mean, as this is going on, I think we've already had Thanksgiving in Canada. So I apologize, Canada, that we're a little bit late on the gun with your Thanksgiving, but you can save these recipes and use them next year. OK, I have one of my favorite recipes that I want to share.

[00:40:53.490] – Allan
It's a cranberry sauce, but I'm going to let you go ahead and go first, Rachel.

[00:40:57.480] – Rachel
Well, I like to have biscuits with my Thanksgiving dinner, which is strange for a Keto person, but I have a new recipe that we just tried recently. Mike bought an airfryer, so we're new to the whole air fryer implements and Keto Connect has an air fryer biscuit recipe that is based with almond flour and cheddar cheese and sour cream. And it was really easy to put together and really easy to use in an airfryer. But if you don't have an airfryer, I've got another recipe that is based with mostly cheese and a little bit of almond flour.

[00:41:39.690] – Rachel
It includes cheddar cheese, mozzarella, parmesan and sour cream. And with a little bit of almond flour in that one, I baked in some muffin tins and they came out great. Even my family, who are not keto, really enjoy these biscuits as well. So I'll send you these recipes so that you can post them in your show notes.

[00:42:00.450] – Allan
Awesome. Thank you. All right. So on cranberry sauce, to me, Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without a turkey and without cranberry sauce, I can do without the stuffing. I can even do without the mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash as we did last week or even without the biscuits. But I want the cranberry sauce and I want the turkey. They just hand in glove. I can't help but combination.

[00:42:26.040] – Allan
And so here's my basic thing, OK, cranberry sauce has everybody can have it kind of a different feel for how they want their cranberry sauce. You can buy the cranberry sauce that's mostly berries and very little gelatin, and you can buy some that are just about practically just gelatin. OK, so you're going to want to play with this a little bit to get it to the texture that you want. So I'm going to talk in my terms of the texture I like, which is more of the whole berries, more berries. OK, you basically want to buy a bag of the cranberries, they sell a 12 ounce bag.

[00:42:59.010] – Allan
It's pretty easy. Just rinse them off, put them in, get a saucepan going off of a water about a cup of water, and then you're going to want to put about put a packet of gelatin in there. So if you like a little bit of gelatin, you can make it a little gelatin. And so up to a packet, OK, with no more than that, get the water boiling and then drop the berries in there. Now, the berries will go anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes at ten minutes is about the time they start to pop. And that's what you want. You want the berries popped. For me, by the time they get to fifteen, it's mush. So now we're just doing the jelly kind. So I'm going to be erring on the side of ten minutes. It's in there boiling and I'm stirring. And then, you know, there you go. Once I get it just about toward a point. So the cranberries are just popping for me. For you. If you want it more gelatin, you may put you may let it go a little bit longer.

[00:43:56.130] – Allan
But when you got about maybe just I would say a minute left, you drop the chia seeds in there, OK? And that's about a quarter of a cup of seeds now at the Chia Seeds do is they just give it kind of a little bit of a different texture, OK, and then when I start doing is I take it off the heat and I start stirring in confectioner's Swerve. OK, so this is an artificial sweetener. Realize, you know, sometimes you want something, you're not going to want the cranberry sauce without the sweet to back it up.

[00:44:26.040] – Allan
It's not just telling you. Right. So you start putting in this Swerve. Now I try to stay closer to like half a cup, but you can go up to as much as three quarters of a cup with the confectioner's Swerve. OK, so you just stir that in and I'll stir in a little bit and then I'll taste it and then I'm OK. This is good for me and now I need to get a little sweeter because everybody else will want to eat it. And then you start on in there. Now, by the time you do all this, the gelatin is going to start to be mixed in.

[00:44:55.470] – Dr.Spar
You know, the gelatins in there, the water is in there. Your cranberries are all set. You've got the chia seeds in there. There's one other option that I'll add. And it really depends on what else we have with dinner. But some people like walnuts, crushed walnuts in there. And so you if you want, you can add walnuts to get the additional texture that you want, put it in a glass bowl and set it in the refrigerator.

[00:45:22.010] – Allan
For about an hour and then it should set and there you go, you've got cranberry sauce and depending again, if you add that the nuts in there, you could have as much as eight servings. But without the nuts, it's probably going to work out to around six.

[00:45:36.500] – Rachel
That sounds wonderful. I have to give that a try for sure.

[00:45:39.170] – Allan
Yeah, it's something and it's one of those things, like with most recipes, I do a little bit of this, a little bit of that, and then you just fill it out. So I don't really have exact measurements for a lot of these things and I apologize for that. I'm not really a recipe writer. I'm a sit down at the stove and just play and then but, you know, having done some of these things over and over and over again, I have a general good idea about how much of stuff to put in it.

[00:46:03.860] – Allan
But just play with it if you like it, a little bit more gelatin to put more gelatin in it and let the berries go longer. If you want a little bit more berry and maybe a little less gelatin and don't cook the berries as long but the chia seeds going in there and then just enough sweetener. And then of course, if you love walnuts like I do, then you put the walnuts in there, a good, healthy, fat kind of round this whole thing out.

[00:46:31.070] – Rachel
Perfect.

[00:46:31.820] – Allan
All right. So anything else we need to go over, Rachel, before we call it a day?

[00:46:37.430] – Rachel
No, I'm good for today.

[00:46:39.410] – Allan
All right. Well, Rachel, I'll see you next week.

[00:46:41.930] – Rachel
Yep, I know.

Patreons

The following listeners have sponsored this show by pledging on our Patreon Page:

– Anne Lynch– Debbie Ralston– Margaret Bakalian
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