The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast
The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast

Episode 1 · 2 months ago

#163 - Simon Hill: Plant-Based Diets, Evolutionary Nutrition, Gluten & Grains, Antinutrients & Lectins, Interpreting Nutritional Studies, Cholesterol & Heart Disease, Nitrates & Nitrites, And More!

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

GET TRANSCRIPT AND FULL SHOWNOTES: melanieavalon.com/simonhill

2:10 - IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life: Join Melanie's Facebook Group For A Weekly Episode GIVEAWAY, And To Discuss And Learn About All Things Biohacking! All Conversations Welcome!

2:30 - Follow Melanie On Instagram To See The Latest Moments, Products, And #AllTheThings! @MelanieAvalon

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7:10 - FOOD SENSE GUIDE: Get Melanie's App At Melanieavalon.com/foodsenseguide To Tackle Your Food Sensitivities! Food Sense Includes A Searchable Catalogue Of 300+ Foods, Revealing Their Gluten, FODMAP, Lectin, Histamine, Amine, Glutamate, Oxalate, Salicylate, Sulfite, And Thiol Status. Food Sense Also Includes Compound Overviews, Reactions To Look For, Lists Of Foods High And Low In Them, The Ability To Create Your Own Personal Lists, And More!

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13:15 - Simon's Background

18:00 - Is There One Right Diet?

20:20 - How Plant Based Should We Be?

28:35 - DRY FARM WINES: Low Sugar, Low Alcohol, Toxin-Free, Mold-Free, Pesticide-Free, Hang-Over Free Natural Wine! Use The Link dryfarmwines.com/melanieavalon To Get A Bottle For A Penny!

31:00 - How Best To Interpret Types Of Studies

34:40 - How Long Is A Long Term Study?

39:00 - Saturated Fat And Cholesterol

43:00 - An Evolutionary Diet Vs An Optimized Diet

46:20 - Longevity And Procreation

47:10 - Our Inherent Intuition For Nourishing Foods

49:15 - Liver & Broccoli

50:35 - AIRDOCTOR: Clean Your Air Of Pollutants, Viruses, Dust, And Other Toxins (Including 99.97% Of Covid) At An Incredible Price! Shop At melanieavalon.com/airdoctor For Up To 50% Off All AirDoctor Units!

53:20 - Antinutrients

1:00:20 - Grains And Gluten

1:04:30 - TMAO

1:08:00 - HDL

1:10:20 - Raising And Lowering Lipids With Diet

1:17:55 - Forming Plaques From High Levels Of Cholesterol

1:21:30 - CAC Scans

1:25:00 - Nitrates And Nitrites 

You know. Why do all of these different opinions exist? And do we actually understand what an optimal diet looks like? And, if we do, what is that? But there does seem to be some resistance, and it's the same in all diet tribes, to acknowledging that maybe this diet is not perfect in all ways. Thinking about the optimal diet today, we have to broaden our lens. I went on to discover that, sure, our genes do have some say, but we have on more control than we're often led to believe. Welcome to the Melanie Avalanche biohacking podcasts, where we meet the world's top experts to explore the secrets of health, mindset, longevity and so much more. Are you ready to take charge of your existence and biohack your life? This show it is really please keep in mind we're not dispensing medical advice and are not responsible for any outcomes you we experience from implementing the tactics mind hearing. Are you ready? Let's do this. Welcome back to the Melanie Avalon biohacking podcast. Friends, I am so excited about today's episode. It is one of those episodes that I so thoroughly enjoyed the conversation that immediately after recording we decided to record a part two. That's how you know there's a lot of good content and you are talking to a wonderful guest. Simon Hill is just so incredible. I know a lot of my audience is Paleo and Keto and may eat a diet very inclusive of animal products and I love to also engage with and really pick the brains of people who are very steeped in the plant based world. And what I really love about Simon is he is so comprehensive, so nuanced, very approachable and kind very aware that different things work for different people. So it was really nice to have this nuanced conversation with him about plant based diets. I cannot recommend enough checking out his book. The proof is in the plants and, like I just said, he will be coming back for a part two that I am super excited about in the coming month. The show notes for today's episode will be at Melanie Avalon dot com slash Simon Hill. Those show notes will have a full transcript, so definitely check that out. There will be two episode giveaways for this episode. One will be on my facebook group I have bio hackers, intermittent fasting, plus real foods, plus life. Finally, pent announcement post and comment something you learned or something that resonated with you or something that you think about this episode. I am dying to hear your opinions on that post to enter to win something that I love. And then there will be another giveaway on my instagram. Find the Friday announcement post there and again comment to enter to win something that I love. Okay, friends, thrilling announcement. You guys know I have been trying so, so hard for so long to get an or ring discount for you guys. For a very limited time. It is happening. You know I love my orror ring. What is the Orr ring? It's pretty much the coolest ring ever. 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...in the show notes. All right, without further ado, please enjoy this wonderful conversation with Simon Hill. Hi, friends, welcome back to the show. I am so incredibly excited about the conversation that I am about to have. Okay, a little backstory on this conversation. So, as you guys know, one of the main questions in life that I'm haunted by is what is the ideal diet for US humans? And I'm really curious and perplexed by the different findings on like the carnivore side and the key to side on one hand, and then the plant based sphere on the other, and so I'm always trying to bring on people of all different perspectives and opinions. And since I tend to be more saturated in the low car paleo world, even though I actually follow a high carb Diet, I actually listen every single night to rich rolls podcast because I just hey, I just find him so calming to listen to and be I think it's really helpful because he's very vegan and brings on a lot of perspectives in that camp, and so I love to just keep my mind open to all of that research and all of those thoughts. And so a few months ago now, I'm not sure how long ago it was, but he had on a guest, Simon Hill, who wrote the proof is in the plants, and I loved this interview so much. I thought Simon's approach was so nuanced and really open minded and very comprehensive and I was like, I just I got to get him on the podcast. So I put him on my list of people to try to book. And then, literally, I mean it was very soon after that, I posted a post on instagram from another guest about cholesterol, I think, and Simon commented on it and said that he would love to come on the show and discuss a different perspective on things and I was so excited. So Um yes, so we connected it. I got his book, I read it. It was after listening to interview, it was everything I thought it was going to be, which was extremely comprehensive. Went into every topic concerning health and a plant based Diet. Tons of studies, lots of nuance, very approachable. So I have so many notes in front of me and there's so much we could talk about. So I'll stop talking so so Simon can start talking. But Simon, thank you so much for being here, Melanie. It's a it's a pleasure and on a debate here and with your community. I'm glad that I I commented on that post. I sometimes refrained from doing that from my my own personal sanity. But yeah, I'm glad that I I commented there and yeah, it's a it's a great pleasure to baby with you today. It made my day. And then, funny enough, I think a few weeks later I had on the shore's eyes who wrote the Alzheimer's solution. They commented. Actually, I don't know if it was it was something about them or was something from Lucavire. There was some sort of discussion and they actually mentioned you in the comments and was like you have to bring on Simon, and I was like he's coming on. So here we are, long awaited, but in any case. So for the audience who is not familiar with your work, would you like to introduce yourself a little bit, tell them a little bit about your personal story, which you talked about in the book and I've heard in the interviews, but what led you to where you are today with the plant based Diet? I'll try and keep this short so we can get into the nuance of nutrition. But I became interested in nutrition a little bit more than a decade ago in my undergraduate degree, was a bachelor of physiotherapy. I went on and was working with professional athletes in Australia and really enjoyed that part of my career. I had a big interest in nutrition and I realized it was a large gap in my kind of overall knowledge and was somewhat hindering my ability to how patients that I was seeing in private practice, but also athletes that I was working with who were going through, you know, injuries and rehabilitation and whatnot. And and I felt there was a big gap actually in the professional football setting that I was working in. And a culmination of that, and then also my family's history with chronic disease. My Dad had a heart attack at age forty one and I was there to witness that. I was the only person with him and following that event, always had a bit of a limiting belief that, you know, our health was very, very much determined by our genes. And you know, I went on to to discover that sure, our genes do have some say, but there there is a lot that we can do. We have a lot more control than we're often led to believe. And how those genes are expressed whether they're turned on or off can be very much determined by the way...

...that we navigate through our lives. So at some point I decided that I wanted to go back to university and really strengthen this weakness of mine that I felt compelled to do, and I did a master's in nutrition science at Deacon University, which is has a very strong nutrition program actually one of the leading nutrition schools in the world, looking at how diet impacts mental health. Of a very big reputation for that. So I went back and did that and and really you know, you mentioned at the beginning we would explore what is the optimal diet, and that's obviously a big interest of yours and that became something that I was just so fascinated by. You know, you look at the bookshelf and you you find you pick up one book it says some some sort of absolute claim, or it's promoting some form of diet as the best diet, and then you shuffle just to the side, maybe take one step and pick up the next book and it will say the exact opposite. And you jump on social media you're exposed to the same sort of conflicting ideas. You look in mainstream media again, the narratives always changing. We know one thing today and then then tomorrow we see something completely contradictory or the opposite, and as a general as a person in the the general public, that's very, very confusing to make sense of and I think that many people are left thinking, well, Gosh, you know, if, if, if experts can't agree, we really don't know anything, and they just kind of throw their hands up in the air and probably just continue doing what they've always done, which is the sort of societal norms. And we can talk about what the average it looks like. So I think that this confusion is not really doing a great service to the to the general public, and so I became fascinated with you. Why do all of these different opinions exist? And do we actually understand what an optimal diet looks like? And if we do, what is that? And how can we go about perhaps better communicating this two people, be it online or through a book or through mainstream media, to give people a bit more confidence in the decisions that they're making? What food are they buying for their families? What does their breakfast look like? They lunch, their dinner, et Cetera. I love it so much. And Yeah, I was really impressed just by the length of the beginning of your book talking about this question of why we're so confused and the role of studies and funding and agendas and ethics and perspectives and how that affects everything ing, and so I'm actually pretty curious. So now that you have done all of this research and looked at everything, have you come to the idea that there is one right diet or is it still unique? Well, that would require us to define diet. I don't believe there's a single dietary label. These labels that we kind of make up card of all Vegan, Mediterranean, low CARB, high carb. I don't believe that a label like that defines optimal diet. I do believe there is a set of characteristics that are consistent with good health outcomes, people feeling better and more energized in their day to day but also better long term health outcomes, so lower risk of chronic disease and also lower risk of premature death. So essentially people living healthier for for longer. And we could go into what those characteristics are, but essentially what I'm where I'm getting at with this is that I don't believe that the kind of dietary labels or brands that we've made up and and sort of put into buckets, and we see the Diet tribes out there. I don't think that's the best way of going about things in terms of trying to come to this ultimate conclusion of what an optimal diet is. And I know that that is not necessarily what people want to hear, because most of us, we do want to know what is the silver bullet and I want it as a prescription. Tell me exactly what to eat and I'll follow it. But unfortunately it's it's much more nuanced than that and while that can sound like a negative thing, I think it's actually really positive because with a theme or characteristics and once we unpack those, it actually gives people more choice and as a wiggle room in there to find and a way of aiding within that that's consistent with that theme,...

...that leaves you feeling best, is something that you can sustain, is something that you can do not just for a week or two weeks, but for a decade, it's hopefully, the rest of your life. Yeah, I couldnot agree more and like for me, so, for example, the blue zones, which is something that people talk about a lot when discussing this. So if I, if I look at that, I see the consistencies being heavily plant based, but not exclusively, with the exception of Loma Linda, whole foods type diet, and then a lot of environmental factors and social factors and things like that, and exercise, and it's it's hard to know to what extent, you know, diet versus environment, versus lifestyle, you know, social, family, all of that is playing a role. But something I found really interesting about your book specifically is so another common friend of yours is Dr be who wrote fiber fueled. He wrote the forward for your book, right or yeah, he did, so a small little nuance. They're a difference, for example. So like in his book he talks about a plant based Diet and how it would ultimately be ideal to be on plant based but he's still open to, you know, people not being quite there. But ideally, in this ideal world, you're one in your book. So I love your thoughts on is the ideal still one? Or I think you say in your book that you looked at all the research and you walked away with like an eight percent plant based maybe I was wondering what you think about that difference between and the one. Okay, the first part of that question. Do I think one plant exclusive is the optimal diet? And I would just straight out say we don't have the evidence to say that. So No, I wouldn't make that claim. And in the book I write approximately and the reason for that is that when you are eating in that manner, it then becomes consistent with that theme. So it might help if we if we walk through that theme. So and even if we took a step back, if you're okay with it, to kind of how do I think about science and how have I come to that this conclusion of this theme, and why might there be people out there who are looking at this differently and and and have a very different opinion about what a healthy diet looks like? So something that's often, I think, lost in interpretation of research and in headlines is when we're looking at at evidence, we need to understand that not all science is equal. We have pre clinical data that can be in a Petriot, sure, an animal model. We have observational research looking at populations of people. You just alluded to the fact there with the blue zones, that in such studies it can be hard to decipher what is leading to their good health. You can see a number of different factors, but it's impossible to be concrete and say, you know, it's it's their plant forward diet that is contributing to their longevity, because we're also aware that these people are are not smoking much. They are quite active people. They're not sitting down all day. They they may consume some alcohol, but they're not consuming a lot, they're not smoking, et Cetera. Right, but it's still an important piece of evidence and you can use statistical analysis to adjust for some of these what we call confounding variables. Good, good observational study will will understand those limitations and try to, as best as possible, consider them. And then you have clinical trials, and these can be short term trials that look at what happens when people eat certain foods and how does that affect bio markers, so things that could change in a matter of weeks, like blood pressure or cholesterol or blood glucose control, or they could be longer term, which are rare because they're very expensive and it can be hard to control people over a long period of time and if they're longer term, like, for example, the Leon Diet Heart Study, which was about four or five years in length, often to in order to see in effect, you have to look at a sick population, because if you look at healthy people for four or five years you might not see much. So these longer term trials allow you to to potentially look at not just bio markers but actually look at things like heart attacks or strokes throughout the duration of that trial. So where I'm getting at with this is that not not all signs as equal. I said, I made that point and we when when we're evaluating research, we need to be...

...considering the quality of the evidence and also whether, as you move up the evidence hierarchy towards more reliable, valid data, does what you see at a sort of pre clinical level continue to play out. And so when I'm looking at research, that's exactly what I'm looking at. I'm looking at preclinical data, observational and the interventions, but I'm not going to place too much stock in mechanistic preclinical data if what we see in human health outcome studies is different. And then, to add a little bit more complexity here within a study. When we're thinking about nutrition and a particular food, we have to always think about a number of different things. If you said to me, are our legumes healthy, my initial response would be it depends. This is perhaps a bad example because in most cases they are. But let's let's change that to something a bit more controversial, like dairy. Is Dairy healthy? Well, again, it depends compared to what. So with nutrition, and I think everyone can appreciate this. If you are adding something to your diet, usually it's displacing or removing something. It comes at the cost of something else. Or if you're removing something, like say you're removing dairy from your diet, usually you're going to add something back in, and so the replacement becomes very, very important, because that often affects the net outcome. Now, not only do we need to consider compared to what we need to consider or how much you're asking me, is dairy healthy? And this is actually a really good example, because we also need to consider, and here are we're talking about low fat, full fat, we're talking about yogurt, cheese, milk, and then how much. We're talking about a cup, two cups a day, et Cetera, and so you can quickly see that there is quite a lot of nuance and all of these things are worthy of consideration when you're evaluating research. If we're not considering this, we can really find evidence to support anything. So, with all of that said, when I look at the overall body of research, the theme that I see that is consistent with good long term health in particular is diets that are low in saturated fat. They're not going to be devoid off saturated fat. We can get into that. There's always going to be some saturated fat in the Diet. They're low in saturated fat, though there really hopefully completely excluding trans fats. They have a good amount of polly unsaturated and mono unsaturated fats, they're high in fiber and they're low and ultra processed foods. Ultimately, when you eat in a in a plant predominant manner, you automatically achieve all of that, and so that's why we see diets like thoughtfully constructed Mediterranean diet or Pascutarian Diet or a well done vegetarian diet or a whole food plant based Diet consistently. We do see in studies that they improve these biomarkers of disease, and in the studies that we do have, where there are clinical trials that are long enough, we do see improvements in health outcomes. Friends, you guys know I love wine. Do you love wine? I've done a lot of research on wine and I truly believe there are a myriad of health benefits. The longest lived populations drink wine. The polyphenols have a ton of potential health benefits. Activating Anti agings are two wins, potentially supporting our immunity maybe even encouraging weight loss. Yep, it's actually not alcohol that makes people gain weight, it's what they eat when they drink. But if you want all of the benefits of wine, the type of wine you're drinking is key. Conventional wine in the US is often full of toxins. We're talking things like pesticides, mold and additives, dyes, colorizers, artificial flavors. Have you even seen some wine that says Vegan? That's because conventional wine isn't even necessarily Vegan because of the additives. I am obsessed with a company called dry from wines. They're not a wine producer, but rather a wine investigator. They go all throughout Europe and they find the wineries practicing organic practices and then they test those wines to make sure the wines are, wait for it, low alcohol, low sugar, free of toxins, free of mold and truly supportive of your health. I'm obsessed with dry from wines. One of the most fun things for me as a wine lover is you get mixed boxes of wine and it introduces you to varietals from all over the world. The wines taste amazing and you can say goodbye to hangovers. If you think you can't drink wine, you've got to try dry from wines. I am obsessed. You can get a...

...bottle for a penny, yes, a penny. Just go to drive from wines dot com slash Melanie avalon and use the cupon Code Melanie Avalon to claim your penny bottle. That's drive from wines dot com slash Melanie avalon. Alright. Now back to the show. I just want to say I'm so enjoying this conversation because I I don't think I've had a detailed conversation on this actual concept and all of all of the episodes that I've had some thoughts to what you just spoke about. So now listeners can probably see why it can be so overwhelming with everything and potentially contradictory. So like, first of all, even the adjusting for confounding factors and stuff. So even that can be complicated because the factors that might be, quote, confounding might be related to what you're testing. So it's like by adjusting for them, it's hard to know if it's just hard to know if you're correctly, uh, testing what you need to be testing with the mechanistic studies and like the trials on mechanisms of action and such. So is that too reductionistic, like what can we learn from that? So, like looking at the effects of saturated fat, you know, on a cell compared to any human being. Can we still draw value from that or how can we know how to interpret that? I think we can still draw value from from mechanistic sort of pre clinical data. I'm definitely not suggesting that this is not an important area of science. In fact, my dad is a professor of physiology has been doing such science for forty years, publishing in cell and metabolism and circulation. So I'm certainly not someone that would rip into that area of science and say it's not needed, it's important, but it's it's hypothesis generating most of the time, so often that that deep science gives us an understanding of something and we go now let's see does that play out in humans? And this is where where it's really really important, because we often think we're smarter than we are. And when you look at a mechanism, so you're looking at a food, certain food or saturated fat, and you're zooming in on one pathway, often these nutrients and compounds affect a myriad of pathways in the body and so if you just look at one isolated pathway, how can you be sure that exposure to that nutriental compound, how can you be sure that of what the net effect is, because it could be under a microscope you might be seeing a Delterius or what you think is a delaterious effect of one pathway, but if you were to be able to have visibility of all pathways, you would end up seeing that the net outcome is a positive one. And that's where looking at actual humans and health outcomes becomes really important, because it assumes that we're seeing the net effect, we're seeing what happens to human physiology as a whole when you're exposed to a certain compound, and it means that if we have any kind of line spots in terms of our mechanistic understanding and the mechanistic science, that what we're getting is a more complete picture. And so often what we see is the health outcome data, we see your finding and we actually don't understand all of the mechanisms. And that's okay because ultimately what is more important to the average person out there is when you eat more of this or less of this, what happens in terms of your biomarkers of disease or what happens in terms of your risk of developing fatty liver or having pluue in your artery, developing atherosclerosis and having a heart attack. So all of that is to say that mechanisms are important, they help further our understanding of things, but they're not essential. They're not essential in terms of making public health recommendations. Yeah, I have been thinking about that a lot recently because they recently launched a supplement line and one of the supplements I want to make is burberinge, and right now there's this whole debate about bourbering versus Dihydro burbering, which is an even more isolated form of burberinge and potentially having, I guess, better effects on blood sugar control. But stepping back, I'm like right, but maybe it's not accounting for other things in burberinge. It's like the more granular you get looking at a specific action and what might happen from it, it's just harder to know what you're losing or what context. It's like taking a sentence out of a book and trying to understand what the book said. You just can't. And so another question about the timeline of things. So like the word long term, for example, what actually is long term? So two questions related to that. You might say, for example, that the carnivore diet, that we don't have long term studies on it. So it's hard to know, like at what point would we have long term like? So when would we cross over to that qualifying as long term? And a second question...

...sort of related is, I guess the longest term study we have is just the evolution of humanity, but even that it stresses me out that that is so debated. Like I feel like we should we should know what we were eating for these millions of years, but even that's debated, like you talk in your book about, for example, I didn't realize this that people often say that we started using fire and that allowed us to eat animal products and that is what led to our increased brains. But you talk about how there's actually a debate that maybe it was that we started cooking starches with fiber, which I was not aware of that. So long term time there's okay, there's a lot of impact there. I definitely, I definitely think our ancestors that made. There's no debating that. There is a lot of debate around the around the contribution of made, the contribution of Tubas and what seems to be apparent, and I think, I think home and Ponzaw has done probably want obably not the best jobs at summarizing all of this. He wrote a book called Burn, which I would highly recommend, and I think that what's clear is that what's amazing about humans is our ability to survive on a myriad of diets, and survives a keyword there. But if you look across the world at hunter gatherer diets, populations living in completely different environments, you see the contribution of animal and plant foods in terms of calories is vastly different in different areas. Some populations have an abundance of calories from animal foods and less from plant foods. Some have the opposite. It can change on a month to month on a seasonal basis as well within those populations. So I think this idea from from sort of the carnival crowd that there was one Paleo Diet, I think is a massive oversimplification and in fact Herman in his book he sort of goes back through how the pain Leo Diet was formed in originally from through a lot of Lauren cordain's work. He points out that the formulation of the Paleo Diet as a single diet that was sort of relatively low carbohydrate contained quite a lot of animal foods, originated through Lauren going through the Murdoch Atlas. That was at least that was the source that he cited in his formulation, and within that atlas there were a number of different diets documented for Hunter Gatherer tribes. What Lauren did was and I'm not suggesting that he was being disingenuous, I just think that he oversimplified things because often an oversimplified message is an easier message for the general public to grasp, but today I feel like people want more information. And what he did was he looked at all of these different diets from hunter gatherers and it really didn't tell you in the in the atlas, you can look at it, the percentage of calories from animals and plants. It just sort of ranked them as to how important they were and he sort of took that and translated it to calories somehow, which I'm not sure if that can be done accurately. That was the first thing that's interesting. But what where it gets more interesting is so there was this huge variance in the types of foods people were eating. He then took an average across the world to create the Paleo Diet. That overlooks what I mentioned at the start. Is probably the most important takeaway is that the diets very greatly around the world and and and really what this suggests is how incredible it is that humans can survive and adapt to a number of different types of diets in terms of the calories coming from from plant foods and animal foods. So that's kind of my thoughts on the Paleo Diet. I'm not sure that there is a singular Paleo Diet. And and and also, I think that and Lauren cordain himself has published on this. But the types of meat that that would have been consumed, based on our knowledge of the types of animals that people were eating, were a lot lower and saturated fat than many of the foods that we see today people eating in that sort of crowd. So that's another thing to kind of just be cognizant of. And and Lauren Cordain has actually published a paper. I can I'll send you the reference on this point exactly and on his thoughts on on cholesterol, which I thought was really, really interesting. In terms of long term how much long term data do we need on the Carnival Diet? It would be great to have something that that shows decades of information, but I'm not sure that we need it. You know, I think this is a really, really interesting discussion around the Carnival Diet because there's no denying that people are improving their health, at least in the...

...short term. I'm sure you would agree with that. You know, there's enough anecdotes for us to to acknowledge that. You know, people seem to be feeling better, or at least certain people that are doing this, and I think there are some some reasons that can can explain that. Now, one of the big inconvenient things for this group is what this diet does to lip its and and I think there are several folks who are kind of prominent in this space that want to downplay that because it is a bit of an inconvenient truth. You know, people are losing some weight and feeling better, but their lipids are kind of moving in the wrong direction and that needs to be either accepted or explained away. I think it should be accepted and and really what I would love to see within this group is the same thing that I'd love to see in the in the plant exclusive Vegan Group, is just acknowledging that, you know, your diet can work and be but it can still have limitations. And and when you acknowledge that limitation, and if we're thinking about the carnival diet here, the fact that it raises APO B containing Lipoproteins, and not for everyone, but for most people quite considerably, if you acknowledge that as a limitation, then you go okay, well, this diet is working in a number of different ways and and there's some benefit. This is a limitation. How do we want to address that? And in that case that can be addressed through modification of the style of carnival diet, through manipulating things like the types of fat that are being consumed, or it could be through treatment with drugs that we know that there is a lot of evidence to show that they are beneficial, but there does seem to be some resistance within that Diet tribe, and it's the same in all diet tribes, to acknowledging that maybe this diet is not perfect in all ways and rather than kind of trying to turn a blind eye to the limitations, let's look at them and work out what is the best path forward to to help people within this community achieve their best health. I think that is a fantastic perspective and I can hear my audience probably getting I'm just really excited to listen to this because a lot of a lot of the feedback I get is you're always bringing on people of all different perspectives and they're saying one thing and then I hear another. And how do I know you know what's true and I think that a lot about what you just said about the carnivore diet. Yeah, people often will go on carnivore and, like you said, have an unfavorable well, they would say, I guess that it's not unfavorable but seemingly unfavorable response in their lipid panel. And so the thought I've always had as well, maybe you could, like you. You just said this, so I'm repeating what you said, but I often think you you could stay carnivore and you could adjust it and probably see a different effect and kind of have the best of both worlds. So here's a question as well. People will often say, and this taps into what we were just talking about, with the evolution. People often say that we should eat like the way we evolved because that would be the best diet to support longevity. But something I think about is that, evolutionarily, it might inform the Diet that we're most suited for to live. But I don't know that our genetics or epigenetics or evolution, I don't know that longevity was their goal. It seems like the goal was reproduction and then not so much. So it's like, I actually don't have a problem because some people will say at the time. A conversation with my friend the other day about entirely Vegan Diet and they were saying, well, that's, you know, not natural and might require supplementation, and my thoughts of that are okay, like, how is it a problem to have a diet where you actually optimize it yourself through a manner that you might not have evolution early naturally followed, if that makes sense. Does that make sense? Yeah, there's I mean there's there's something called the naturalistic fallacy, which assumes that kind of what what, whatever is natural, is always best for us. And this kind of weaves into this conversation and I would agree with you. I think that. I think that evolution and anthropology is interesting and I think it adds to the overall body of evidence, for sure, but I do think we need to be cognizant of the fact that Homo Erectus, he or she was not eating to maximize their health span and lifespan, and we just kind of went over this, and the fact that humans could adapt to many different environments. Homo Erectus was very much eating to survive and, as you say, the goal being to get to an age where or or the primary goal? I should say there is a little bit of nuance in this, but the primary goal being to get to an age where you can procreate.

Okay, because that is going to be beneficial to to Homo sapiens from an evolutionary perspective. The goal not being to select foods that are going to lower your risk of chronic disease. That's a very, very different question and that's why, thinking about the optimal diet today, we have to broaden our lens. We can't just look at the data that we have from the foods at our ancestors eight. It's interesting and important, but we have to include all of the modern data points that we have, and so there is really no reason why a diet with certain supplements might not might not be the best diet, the most optimal diet. It might turn out that a diet with the addition of certain isolated up mints is the key to longevity, and you know, the the kind of that remains to be fully understood, but I think it's it's it's an important point that we need to be open minded about the fact that that that might be the key forward. Do you know, I actually don't think I've looked this up. Have there been studies on longevity and if you've had I guess this might just be for women, if you've had children or not. Talking about confounding factors you would have to control for people who have a child and then maybe become metabolically unhealthy, you know, after that. So like somebody who regains all of their metabolic health pre impost child, like, I wonder if their lifespan is shorter because they had the baby. It's a great question. Yeah, that's something I'd have to look at. I would I would not be able to give you an accurate answer right now, but I agree it's very interesting. I have to add it to the research list. So, if we had like a baby and we put them in a room with access to and I'm trying to say if this experiment should include like processed food or not. When we're born, do you think it's a blank slate as far as having an intuition as to what foods nourish us, or is there, you know, like genetic factors, got microbiome factors? I just wonder at what point does our cravings and desires become learned versus intuitive? Also very, very good question. And so if if you had a child with and you put surrounded them with a whole lot of different foods, would they make the right choices? Would they automatically balance out their nutrition and achieve nutritional adequacy? There's actually been a study on this. Yeah, does, and the guys from University of Sydney who wrote a book called eight like the animals, Steven Simpson one of the authors. He's looked at this, but more more more, looking at animals and they do tend to balance things out when they're in an environment that's not manipulated. That's the key. So our environment today has been heavily manipulated and you know, forty two of the average person's calories are coming from ultra processed foods and I would argue that nature cannot compete with these foods. So if you were to expose a young child to an environment with those foods, I think their radar, their intuition, would be off. Essentially their appetite would become or their their regulatory system that controls appetite would become hijacked. So I think there is enough evidence for us to to kind of conclude that. And Yeah, if a child on their own accord, was able enough to to selected their foods and access them. I think they would make fairly decent decisions. If they're in a sort of quote unquote, natural environment full that development, I'm not sure whether that would be making the best decisions for their longevity. Something I often think about related to this question is, for example, at least in the animal sphere, they'll often say that liver is like the super food that it has, you know, all of this nutrition. And my question is it's very rare that I meet somebody who even people like in the Paleo world who like the taste of just like playing raw liver, and I'm like, why is that like? If if it's especially people who have, quote, who aren't eating processed foods? For me, for example, like I eat all whole foods. I even went through a period where I was very anemic, which is maybe something we can talk about, and at that time I was like, you know what, I'm anemic. There is no reason that liver shouldn't taste amazing to me and it it just didn't. And I'm haunted by like is that completely cultural? Where did my intuition go with that? Well, I think the same human could exist on the other side of the spectrum,...

...in that there would be many kids, and probably adults that have an aversion to, say, Broccoli or certain grain vegetables. Right. So it kind of works both ways and it's a it's an interesting question. Is that a result of what we've been exposed to and the hyper palatable foods, but also the way society thinks about certain foods? I'm not sure I have the perfect answer, but I would presume if you have someone who is not exposed to our current environment, where there is just so many delicious foods available, then foods like Broccoli and liver are probably more palatable. Hi, friends, I am obsessed with clean air and I'm about to tell you how you can get fifty off my new favorite air purifier brand. Did you know that in two thousand nine less than of the thousand chemicals registered for commercial use had undergone basic testing for safety? This is very troublesome. These chemicals, as well as toxins like carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide and ozone, regularly appear in our air and environment, along with things like dust, mold, pollen and pet Dander, smoke, viruses and bacteria, as well as toxic compounds known as volatile organic compounds, v O C's. All of these compounds can trigger allergies and contribute to our overall toxic burden. Studies have even shown that air pollutants can increase respiratory issues, heart disease and even the risk of cancer. You are literally living in your air. You wanted to be clean. Historically, I have tried many brands and I personally love Alan and air doctor and I just recently found air doctor and I love it for their quality and affordability. The air doctor units utilize a three stage filtration process, that's a prefilter, a Carbon v O C filter and an ultra hepafilter which can capture airborne particles one hundred times smaller than typical hepafilters. They have tests showing that the air doctor three thousand for example, that I have removed up to viruses and bacteria from the air, including of live covid in the air. The auto setting on my unit is incredible. It automatically adjust the fan speed according to the contaminants in the air. And yes, it knows because when I start cooking, it kicks into high speed. If you have kids, the buttons can be locked. The filters are super easy to purchase and replace, something I love about air doctor. No Wifi or Bluetooth. Some people want Wifi and Bluetooth. I do not. I'm always trying to minimize that. This has got none of that and they are much, much cheaper than other high quality air purifiers out there. Before Air Doctor I was just using Alan, but honestly, air doctor rivals that at a much better price. Air Doctor has one of the best offers for any product that I love. You can get up to fifty percent off with my link. Yes, up to fifty off. Just go to Melanie avalon dot com slash air doctor. The discount will be auto applied at that link, that Melanie avalon dot com slash air doctor, for up to fiff automatically applied. Friends, if you don't have air purifiers in your life, get them in your life now. You want to clean the air that you're living in and I cannot recommend enough checking out air doctor and I'll put all this information in the show notes. All right. Now back to the show. Actually, I'm glad you brought up the Broccoli because that is something that the carnivorse sphere people will say a lot. As an example, they'll say that, or as quote evidence, they'll say that. You know, all kids basically don't like green vegetables and it's not until later. So they say it's like we accustom ourselves to this taste and that's due to the anti nutrients and such and Broccoli. Where do you fall on plant anti nutrients? There are certain foods if overdone, for example, if you consume too much spinach, you could end up with kidney stones. You'd have to consume a lot, though. A lot of this comes down to exposure and you know, for example, lecton's is one that gets thrown up a lot. Right, I've had doctor and doing on the show twice. Yeah, so how should I phrase this? I think Dr Gun Dury has some some really great things to say, so I don't want to come across as kind of just having a go at him. Generally, we would disagree on Lectins a bit, though, and where where I think he puts a lot of his emphasis is on the pre clinical mechanistic data. So what's what happens? If you put Lectins, you know, into a cell that's been removed from the body in a petriot dish kind of thing that level of evidence, we need to be thinking about very critically, and there's a few reasons for that. I went I mentioned how important exposure is before. Whenever we're looking at something, if we're talking about whether our food is healthy or not, critical to that is how much are we being exposed to? And in this mechanistic level of science, what's really easy to do is to expose a cell to something like lectins at a level or that it would never be...

...exposed to in the human body through a human diet. So I could expose these cells to the amount of of lectins magnitudes higher than what you would ever be exposed to through eating legumes, for example, and we see that. We see, you know, many, many mechanistic studies that show that lectins could be problematic. The exposure level is astronomical. Now what I like to explain to people here is that you can have a compound like Lectins, or any compound that can be healthy at a certain level of exposure, but then it can also be harmful at a certain level of exposure. Let's take oxygen for an example. So I think that most of us would agree breathing in air that contains oxygen is a good thing. We require it. It sustains us. Right, it's critical to the production of energy and the maintenance of life. But if I was to give you one oxygen, you would soon pass out and eventually you would die. So the oxygen concentration in air, I think, is Maybey, but if I expose you to a hundred percent oxygen, it becomes delaterious. That same compound that's healthy for us, ramped up at a certain exposure level becomes harmful. Now, with that in mind, the fact that a hundred percent oxygen is harmful to us, none of us are going around saying don't breathe, there are we? We were the common sense approaches. Okay, a hundred percent oxygen is bad, but in in air is beneficial for us. I'm going to breathe today now with lect ends. So we see this extreme exposure in mechanistic peatree level science can cause some delatarious effects to cells, can increase markets of inflammation, et CETERA. Now what about in humans? Well, if we look at population data and you look at populations who are consuming foods that contain lectings and and sure they're they're cooking them and soaking soak beans and cook them, which does remove or minimize reduce some of the lectings, but they're still lectings in these foods. These these people have very good health outcomes and if lectings were as kind of poisonous as as they're often portrayed to be, then we should expect to see these cultures and populations who eat a lot of electing containing foods, we should expect to see higher incidents of autoimmune conditions or conditions related to gut barrier breakdown. We should expect to see poorer health, but in fact we see the opposite. So I think that that alarm bells go off for me when when a lot of this is derived from mechanistic data where there is a very, very extreme exposure amount, and I think we need to be careful over extrapolating from that to human health. So we started this, I guess, thinking about anti nutrients. I would just posit. The question to everyone with regards to anti nutrients is if you're if a claim is being made and it's based on something that's that's mechanistic, that's interesting, but remember your food is a matrix, it's not just a single nutrient. Being that that are cells being exposed to or compound. It is a culmination of nutrients and compounds, phytochemicals that all then together create a net outcome, a net effect on your physiology. So we have to be careful not getting to reductionists. There are certain compounds in foods that could be considered did anti nutrient. But again, what I'm most concerned with is when you eat those foods, sure they might contain those but they contain a number of other things as well. What's the net effect on your physiology and your health? And so I ask to kind of remember to zoom back out. Yeah, I love that so much. I developed an APP called foods and skide and it actually looks at eleven different compounds and foods and shows their levels and different foods. I was researching lectins for it because it has lectins, and I was actually very surprised by the overwhelming lack of studies that I could find on lectins. And then also like the fact that lectins are in everything, including meat, and on the flip side, sometimes linked to health improvements. So I was like, okay, well, that's complicated, but also in the same sphere. So there have been a few different categories of food that I've actually change my perspective on pretty intensely.

First well, back in my standard American diet days, I didn't really give credence to anything being necessarily good or bad. But when I first went Paleo, I, you know, I went to this world where some foods I thought were just really bad. But now I've stepped back and try to objectively look at some of these things and it's a little bit different than what I've been thinking. So, for example, like grains, if you just go to Google scholar and type in grains and health and try not to be biased in your interpretation, it's hard to make the argument that grains are as bad as I think we make them out to be. And that was a big epiphany I had relatively recently. Actually, gluten is a whole another a whole, another issue. You do talk about gluten in the book. What do you think about gluten and are we being reductionistic with it? Is it a problem? It's a big hot topic for people. I think it's certainly a problem for those with CELIAC. Outside of a kind of wheat allergy or CELIAC. I think there probably are a number of people that are removing gluten that perhaps don't need to, and I guess where I sit on this is that if you, for whatever reason, feel you want to remove gluten, I have no problem with that. I would just suggest that you really consider what you're replacing that with, because this is where people run into problems. If you're going gluten free and then buying a lot of the ultra process gluten free foods that have a bit of a halo effect, you know these are really not health foods, then I think you might be shifting your overall dietary pattern in an unfavorable direction. If you are replacing these gluten containing foods, however, with gluten free hoole grains like buckweed or brown rice or black rice, then then I think that's perfectly fine. So really it comes down to, you know, personal preference. I'm okay with with someone who says they want to adopt a gluten free diet. I just think that some thought into the replacement is probably important. But I would side with the kind of idea that gluten, I think, has been a little bit unfairly demonized. I'm not sure that it is the cause of all of the Gut inflammation that that perhaps some have have kind of thought, but certainly for certain individuals it could be an issue. And we haven't spoken about the microbiome here or personalization, but I'm a very big advocate of personalized nutrition and and I do think the microbiome is central to that. And, you know, I think it would be foolish for us to think that that each of us are going to respond to the exact same food in the same manner. It's interesting with the gluten because it's like there was this whole movement of gluten free, then there was like an anti gluten free movement, which I'm so glad you said this that you're okay with people being gluten free, because now there's sort of a backlash where they'll say, oh, you shouldn't be gluten free because gluten is not an issue at all. But some people seem to genuinely feel better on gluten free. So I think it's nice to just be open to people, like you said, finding what works for them and paying attention to how it affects them and making sure that they're getting what they need. Yeah, look, I I say that kind of some of that rhetoric online and around really trying to hammer home this point that no, gluten is being demonized and you shouldn't worry about it. You should change your diet. But I also just kind of take the position that look, gluten is not necessary, it's not essential. So if you if you want to remove it, there are some some, some great substitutes and options and you can certainly achieve optimal health and a healthy dietary pattern without gluten in your diet. I just don't think we need to demonize it. At the same time, it's funny, I was gluten free for years before I actually tested to see if I was CELIAC or whatever it may be. I tested negative for CELIAC, but I've been gluten free for so long I'm not sure if it's accurate, but I did test for weed allergy. So I was like, okay, I can do this and not have to like make it, make an excuse. But so, speaking to the microbiome, such a frontier of stuff that we just don't even remotely understand. But I was reading this is a kind of a nuanced, random rabbit hole of the microbiome. But one of the things that I'm really fascinated by is t m AO. For example, you talk about that in your book and I was reading one of the studies that you referenced and it was so fascinating because it was looking at so for listeners are not familiar, or maybe you can tell listeners a little bit about t m a o and what it is. But high levels are correlated to health issues. One of the studies that your referenced, they actually had people on a plant based or I...

...think I think it was I think it was a Vegan Diet. It was a plant based Diet compared to an animal diet and testing t m AO levels. The animal diet increased t m a O levels, but not if it was the arm that ate it after having done the plant based Diet first. So it was sort of like oh maybe, maybe changes in the Gut microbiome or actually, you know, playing a role here. And and like that's an example of like a context. I think it's just, you know, we don't take in the whole context of things with like t m AO, for example, like the role of other foods t m a o thoughts. Yeah, and I mean that's even a good the role of other foods and, I guess, complementary foods and overall Diet. That's this is a really interesting conversation, particularly you know. One thing that all that, and we can come back to this if you want, but or not in the future episode, is Red Mate and risk of cancer and how, potentially the inclusion of plants may modulate that risk, which I think is a fascinating thing. But in this in this instance we're talking about the production of t m a through the microbiome and then that actually goes into circulation and in the liver you produced t m a O, which is, as you say, is associated with this increased risk of cardiovascular disease, type two diabetes. Now what we see is that people who have been eating plant based more more plant foods, they have a reduced capacity to produce T M A, which means less t m AO in circulation. Now, I must say I didn't expand on this in my book and one of the reasons for that was I kind of was sitting on the fence as to how important is this marker. And since the book was published I've I've read some published Mendelian randomization studies which look at genetics and they're really really these are really fascinating studies and the same applies for elevated levels of LD l cholesterol or APO B, containing life of proteins. There's a bunch of these studies looking at that, but in this instance, looking at genetic studies, looking at people who who are have genetically elevated levels of t m a O, we don't see increased risk of cardiovascular disease. And so for me I think the jury is still a little bit out in terms of is t m a Oh is it just associated with cardiovascular disease but it's not actually involved in the causal in the development of it? I'm leaning towards that right now, which doesn't mean it's a it's a market that we shouldn't look at. I'm just not sure whether it in and of itself is causing or contributing to cardiovascular disease. And an example that I would use that similar to that is hdl cholesterol. So so we know that people who have elevated hey HDL cholesterol have lower risk of cardiovascular disease. However, we've we've had a bunch of trials that have in that have used drugs to raise HDL that have failed. They haven't lowered risk of cardiovascular events in those people. And so what where we are currently with HDL is that it is certainly associated with cardiovascular disease, but we don't think it's causal. We don't think it's increasing. HDL is directly lowering cardiovascular disease. It seems to be more of just an association. So all that to say, with T M A O and and this current conversation, I think that research what you pointed to, which I put in the book, I think it's very interesting association. But I am somewhat reluctant to say right now that people that are eating more meat and producing more t m a oh that that is directly causing dovascular disease. And I'm just not sure about that. And fish that's preformed t m AO right. Is there a difference between that, like taking it in preformed versus creating it yourself? Not Really, but that also, I guess, ADDS weight to this idea that maybe it's not causal. When I say that, because fish consumption is associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. So that's another thing that's a little difficult to explain. If you take the position that t m a OH is directly causing cardiovascular disease. It's another it's another kind of finding that would be hard to reconcile. So it's it's another piece of evidence that sort of just leaves me thinking. I think T M Ao certainly the association is there people with elevated Tam Ao Higher Risk Cardiovascular Disease, but I think it might be an innocent bystander. I'm not sure that it's actually involved in the kind of pathology. And then speaking to the hdl piece, I find...

...this really interesting, at least in my own panel, because I like to do either high carb, low fat or low carb, not really high fat, but like low car, higher or fat. I don't like to do high carb high fat at the same time. What's interesting is I monitor my blood limits pretty regularly and if I do the lower car higher fat approach, my hdl will raise, but so will my l d L. And then if I switch to the low fat it's like the HDL jobs but so does the L del. So it's like I don't know how to make the HDL go up and the ldl go down. So I'm very, very fascinated. There's so much research, and I mean this could be like an hours and hours long conversation and there's so many opinions, but I'm very haunted by the correlation versus causation and the role of both L D L and HDL and health. It's just a lot. I think people are very confused. Yeah, I would would say I just mentioned the HDL. I think that HDL right now, if you look at the all of the guidelines and the latest evidence on Hdl, I would say that the absolute amount of HDL or any sort of ratio to do with hdl, we really can't use that as a way of determining risk of cardiovascular disease. And and that is off the back of we had this hypothesis observational studies showed high HDL is associated with lower risk of cardiovascular disease, that that hypothesis then went on to lead to the development of certain drugs that would raise HDL. Took people that were at risk of cardiovascular disease, jacked their hdl up did not see any protection. What that tells us is that that maybe the amount of HDL is not actually as important as we thought it was. And now there's a bunch of researchers looking at hdl function. It's going to be a whole, another topic to come in in future years, and whereas with L D L, two different story. So I should say I'm going to talk about L D L cholesterol here, but really I mean a PO B containing LIPO proteins. For any of the kind of lipid specialists out there, I'm simplifying this little bit. But L D L cholesterol we have genetic data. So we know very clearly that over fifty different genetic variants that increase L D L cholesterol through different pathways, depending on the extent of that increase, the magnitude of that increase, there will be an increase in risk of coronary heart disease, and it's linear. The higher that L D L cholesterol goes up, the greater the risk. And in fact, if you look at folks with familial hyper cholesterol emia, whether it's heterozygous or Homos, I guess you know, particularly homos, I guess, where someone could have an LDL cholesterol five seven hundred, if left untreated, they will often develop Vera asclerosis and heart disease in their teenagers. So those are genetic points that we have. And then we have the observational research which shows the association higher L D L cholesterol higher risk of currentary heart disease. And then it's further strengthened by clinical trials that lower ldl cholesterol through different pathways. PCSK nine drugs. We've got staturns, Z am IE. There's a whole bunch of different drugs that work on different pathways to reduce ldl cholesterol and you see a reduction in Cindi vascular events and you see regression of plaque once you get down to to a certain level. So when you add all of that are it becomes a very compelling case to to kind of lead you to to believing, or concluding, I should say, that L D L is causal and more specificly, that APO b containing lipoproteins are necessary for the development of Atherosclerosis, and certainly that's my position. I would find it hard to come to a different position today. And I do think also one thing to add to that that I think is really, really important is you know, often you could look at a a drug trial and you could look at the kind of risk reduction and might think it's not a huge risk reduction. But we have to keep something in mind here when we're talking about LDL cholesterol increasing risk of cronary heart disease, or we're talking about APO b more specifically, lifetime exposure is really, really important. So what we actually see is that the kids that have these genetic mutations that increases their ldl cholesterol, there their increased risk of cronary heart disease is is magnitudes higher than what you see in an observational study, and also their benefit of reducing is magnitudes greater because you...

...can get them earlier in life, whereas if you take someone in a drug trial who, say, sixty five years old, and you run a four year drug trial, they've had five, six decades of exposure to high l de l cholesterol already. You can only do so much when you intervene so late in life. And this this plays back into this idea of just preventative, you know, lifestyle medicine and trying to make these changes to our nutrition and our lifestyle as early as we can in our life, because lifetime exposure to things like L D L cholesterol is really important. So if you had a person who had a lifetime exposure and it was high and then magically you just meet it low, like with a magic switch. Is there damage that's been done? Yeah, they will. They have significant residual risk through the development of that Plaku. It doesn't just go away. It doesn't just go away. So so Atheros Sclerosis is, you know, it's bubbling away underneath the surface for for decades. Sure, it becomes symptomatic perhaps when someone's in their fifties or sixties, but we know that the actual path of physiology of that is occurring even in the fetus, depending on the mother's cholesterol levels and health, but certainly during the teenage years. And some of the early evidence for that was looking at Korean the Korean War, looking at American soldiers and the post mortem sort of analysis of these soldiers who were killed by a gun wound, looking at the condition of their cardiovascular system. These were, on average, twenty one year old males from America and seeing that many of them had substantial atherosclerosis. That was one of the sort of landmark studies that got people thinking, wow, you know, these here, here's a group of people that we thought were fit and healthy and they certainly looked it on the outside, but they were on the road to developing symptomatic cardiovascula disease? Can you have, because I guess this is what an argument the carnivore people make. Can you have these really high levels and no plaque? I think you. Yes, you can. So remember what we're looking at in these studies is the typical average response. There will always be outlies, but just because there's outlies does not that doesn't mean that what we're seeing, what we're recommending to the public, is wrong. I mean, do you do want to take the pump that you're an outlier? You know, it's it's it's possible that you are, but it's not probable. So just to sit on that for a moment. You know, are you a a a really by the off chance? Are you want of these outlies, or are you more likely to have the typical response that we see? I guess the tiny nuance there is, can there be a contextual environment where, like, where you would have that situation? But because you're in a not an inflammatory state, you're not even for me, like, I don't know, to what effect is that genetics versus the environment that you create with your diet, the creation of plaque from the high yeah, so certainly, and I think this would again, it would be foolish of us to to just zooming just on a PO B and L D L cholesterol because, as you just mentioned, that inflammation is important. There are other blood pressure is another one that's really important. But what we know is that those other risks tend to they tend to stack upon each other and increase your risk. However, what's absolutely necessary to develop a thros sclerosis is elevated levels of ldl cholesterol, more specifically APO B containing liber proteins. And if you, if you, if you're if those levels are not elevated, we essentially do not see a thros sclerosis. So my position, in a position in the guidelines, is why take the risk and and and elevate them to a level where you have increased numbers of these floating around, entering into the arterial wall, greater chance for retention, greater chance for plarque build up, when there are very simple ways for most people, not everyone, because some people have genetically elevated levels, but there are very simple ways through lifestyle to shift them into a favorable direction. And if we look at a study like the piece of study out of Spain which looked at subclinical athrow sclerosis. So they took a group of people or otherwise healthy and they looked at their ldl cholesterol levels and then they used ultrasound to look at subclinical arthrows sclerosis. So they were looking at plarque build up in these healthy individuals and what they saw was at what your doctor would describe as normal, say hundred ten, I think ten milligrams per desk leaders might be hundred or...

...or a D fifteen. I can send to the graph, but at what your doctor would say is normal, about fifty people had subclin classros sclerosis and it wasn't until you got to seventy milligrams per dessi leader of an L D L cholesterol level, where people where there was virtually no atherrosclerosis, and that that piece of study finding, which came out a couple of years ago, is consistent. Going back to the earlier part of our conversation with Lauren Cordain, Paleo Diet author who published paper with Eaton and a few other colleagues that also went through and looked at cholesterol levels in babies, in chimpanzees, in humans that do not develop Athrosclerosis, and the conclusion of that coming from the guy who wrote the Paleo Diet was at the optimal level of L D L cholesterol is seventy milligrams per desi leader. And so there's quite an extensive body of search that would suggest that if we could target that level out of population, we'd see huge reductions in cardiovascular disease. Yeah, that's the perspective I've sort of had, which is it just seems like playing with fire to have these really high levels, even if you think it's fine and like a clear calcium artery score or whatever that it. Maybe it just seems I don't know, it seems dangerous. Yeah, and with the with the the Carnrioti calcium scan again I think one of the important things to consider is what's the utility of that? And when you're young and you haven't had many years exposure to elevated L D L cholesterol. Let's say you're in your thirties and adopt a carnival diet or early forties and you've been eating it for for two or three years and had elevated levels for for that period, there's there's not enough time to see calcified plaque. So so getting a Carnrioti calcium score of zero, like it should be zero. Yeah, it should be zero. So it's not. It's not that helpful for that that individual at that point in time. Yeah, Gran, I'm glad you pointed that out. Hi, friends, so what I'm about to say may include some disturbing content, so if young ones are listening, you may want to skip ahead. On Valentine's Day, I experienced sexual battery by a man at a massage parlor. I felt so helpless and so scared while it was happening and afterwards I was really, really scared to tell anybody. I'm so glad that my friends encouraged me to tell the police, and I'm so glad that the police believed me and that the man is now in jail. And ever since sharing my story, you guys have been so supportive. So many people have applauded me for telling the police, saying that something like that had happened to them too, and they never told anybody. I started looking into the statistics and they are pretty shocking. So sexual assaults are most likely the most prevalent crime in the US and they are also the most underreported. Every sixty eight seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. So I was one of those. Every nine minutes that victim is a child. Meanwhile, only twenty five out of every one thousand perpetrators will end up in prison and only five percent of sexual assault reports filed have ever been proven false. Two percent of all juvenile sexual assault victims are female. Of Adult Rape Victims are female, and in two thousand nineteen over six hundred and fifty two thousand, six hundred and seventy six women were raped and nearly one million women were victims of sexual assault. I believe this is a huge, huge problem happening in our society. It's one of the crimes where there's not usually evidence. It's not like a physical object was stolen or somebody outwardly injured or killed. It's basically your word against the perpetrator, and so it can be really, really scary to tell somebody and stand up for yourself, but I want to encourage you that we can change this. We can speak up. So if something happens to you, I encourage you. Please, please, tell some buddy. I promise you you're not crazy. The thing that really convinced me to go to the police was it wasn't so much about me, but about stopping this man from doing this to somebody else. If you feel like someone crossed the boundary, they probably did. People don't usually question things that are appropriate and normal, and as parents, I encourage you to have these conversations with your children in whatever time and way you feel comfortable. I think we can make change here. It's just about spreading awareness and taking a stand and speaking out. So thank you, everybody so much for the support. I love you all. You are amazing and let's change this. So, like I always say, you got this. Okay, back to the show. I want to be respectful of your time. I might take you up on your offer if you want to come back in the future and touch on climate and environment, and I would love to do a show on that. One more just food related question, because you've talked about this and I've heard you speak about it and I don't think I've talked about it all on the show before. Nitrates and night rates. I was wondering if you it just talked really briefly a little bit about that. I'm so...

...fascinated by the difference in those from plants versus animal products. Right, so I guess in in animal products nitrates are often used in the preservation, particularly in the kind of ultra processed meats, Deli meats and whatnot, and whereas in plant foods like let's say rocket or Rugal are, depending on where you're from, or beetroot, these are naturally rich in nitrates, and what's interesting is that actually the way that they're packaged and within this food matrix affects how the body metabolizes them and the pathway that they go down. And so, in short, when we're consuming these nitrates in plant foods that a package, next to antioxidants, compounds like vitamin C also polyphenols, we see the nitrate to go down this pathway where they are acting as a precursor to nitric oxide. And nitric oxide is a really wonderful compound for our physiology. It helps blood pressure, improved vasodilation. We know that it increases blood flow to the brain and may have effects on cognition and the developmental lack thereof of neurodegenerative diseases. Whereas the nitrates that are in these sort of probe more processed animal foods. And I don't think there's a lot of debate out there about ultra processed meats being something that should be limited, if not avoided, but the nitrates in those foods go down this other pathway mostly because of what they're packaged with. And what I'd love to see, and I have asked a few researchers about this and I haven't seen much, is or what about if you're eating those those meats with, for example, rocket or with beet root? I think that's an interesting thing for us to to kind of look at. But what we what we see is that, at least when you're consuming these meats by themselves or within a diet that doesn't contain a lot of antioxidants, that those nitrates end up being converted to a nitroso compounds which are thought to be carcinogenic, and this is kind of one of the proposed mechanisms that may help explain why we see an association between regular consumption of ultra process meats and colorectal cancer, for example. So all that to say is it's it's just a neat part of physiology. I guess that similar compounds, depending on the food that they're in, can can go down different pathways and affect our physiology differently. Yeah, it's so fascinating. And now the label things as nitrate free, but it will technically be the same compound, just from like celery, like, basically like a reductionistic approach. But in any case, this has been so amazing. I could talk to you just for hours and hours. So maybe if you will like to come back in the future and we could tackle the climate stuff. That would be amazing. The last question I ask every single guest on this show and it's just because I realize more and more each day how important mindset is. So what is something that you're grateful for? The Ocean. So I'm currently up in Barron Bay. I spent a bit of time up here. It's sort of the north part of New South Wales, on the Northern Coast. There been spending a fair bit of Time Surfing. So yeah, the the ocean is certainly something I'm very grateful for. I always feel great coming out. I love that. Well, thank you so much, Simon. I cannot thank you enough this conversation, which is so like a sigh of relief. I think people are gonna feel so empowered and feel a lot better after listening. I cannot thank you enough for your work and you have you have a restaurant? Correct? Yeah, I have a restaurant in Bondai, which is in Sydney in Australia, and that's called Eden Bondai. So if you're ever in the neighborhood, we'd love to have you in there. It's amazing. What links would you like to put out there for listeners to best follow your work? So if folks want to listen to more of what I have to say and my guests, I can listen or tune in on the proof to your podcast. Yeah, the proof podcast. On twitter, I'm at the proof and on Instagram at Simon Hill. Awesome. Well, we will put links to all that in the show notes. Thank you so much for your time and everything that you're doing. This was incredible and I hope we have a wonderful rest of your day. Thank you, Melanie. Bye. Thank you so much for listening to the Melanie avalon bio hacking podcast. For more information, you can check out my book what when wine? Lose weight and feel great with Paleo style meals, intermittent fasting and wine, as well as my blog, MELANIE AVALON DOT COM. Feel free to contact me at podcast at Melanie Avalon Dot Com and always remember you got this.

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