KC Craichy’s SuperHealth Podcasts: Exercise Medicine – Live a High Performance Life

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Posted on 22nd May 2012 by admin in Super Health |SuperHealth Podcasts

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Today on KC Craichy’s SuperHealth Podcast, we wrap up our popular series Exercise Medicine with extreme human physiologist Dr. Greg Wells, author of the highly-recommended new book Superbodies: Peak Performance Secrets from the World’s Best Athletes. Dr. Wells bridges the worlds of sport and medicine, helping elite athletes and critically ill patients alike. How can you incorporate the recovery secrets of Olympic athletes as you or a loved one battle a severe illness? Or perhaps you’d like to recover quicker and stronger for your next workout. These are the subjects of today’s episode.

Join us by clicking on the podcast button below to listen.

Audio Transcript

KC: Welcome to Living Fuel TV, I’m KC Craichy, with special guest Dr. Greg Wells. Sports Scientist and author of Super Bodies.

Greg: Thanks for having me on the show.

KC: Great having you Greg. We’ve gotten into some really cool stuff. Based on your experience, you’re kind of a bridge between sport and medicine. I’ve always felt that was so important because they are all teaching so many different things. One of the examples I’ve given is that the medical community will tell someone to not take much protein because it’s going to hurt your kidneys. But the research is completely the opposite of and if you look at athletics. If you ask what’s the most important nutrient in athletic, almost universally get the answer protein. So it’s like somebody is not right there, but there are similarities between people trying to recover in medicine, and people trying to recover in athletics. So we’re going to talk today about nutrition around exercise.

Greg: Yes, I’ve got an interesting world in that I work in the medical community as a scientist as a researcher, but then I also work in the high performance sport community as a physiologist. I’m really lucky that I’m able to bridge these ideas and hopefully inform everybody about what we can learn in both situations to improve health and performance.

KC: That’s fantastic. The average person here is not going to win a gold medal. They’re not going to win a trophy at the moment. They’re already into their lives but they still want to live long healthy lives and some of them have exercise programs. They have completely different understandings of how you fuel yourself around exercise and so you have some ideas about that. How do you go about that?

Greg: One of the things we’re trying to push now is to get as many people as possible involved in physical activity. We’re going to get a few people to win Olympic medals but the vast majority of us mere mortals will simply try to go out and maybe go for a walk, or go for a run. Some people might compete in a Triathlon, some people might get into weight lifting or yoga. It doesn’t matter to me, all I care about is people participate in physical activity because it revolutionizes the way the body works. It makes us healthier, it makes us stronger. Initially the first couple of weeks you get really tired, but after that everything just sort of takes off and you feel amazing. What I’m interested in is trying to use nutrition to fuel that. Get people exercising more and then get people to use nutrition in order to be able to fuel that activity level so that they super charge their health and be able to participate in physical activity for the rest of their lives, and actually improve their health.

KC: More life to your years and more years to your life.

Greg: What we want people to do is to live as well as they possibly can until the last possible second and then you know what, we’re all going to pass away at some point, but I want to go 15 minutes before and have a great exciting happy life throughout the entire time that I’m allowed to be here. When I’ve done nutrition properly in and around exercise it really makes a huge difference and we’ve done a number of really interesting things with the athletes around trying to expand their concepts about what is great for them to be able exercise well. We’ve tried to really help people to fuel themselves before and during using a combination of high quality carbohydrates and great proteins to provide the body with the energy that it needs. With the amino acids that it needs to fuel muscle contraction, but then also to nerve communication and a number of other things. Then really focusing in on a combination of high quality carbohydrates to really fuel muscle metabolism, but then also really importantly getting those proteins into the body to help repair the muscle tissue. To rebuild the blood cells, to rebuild all those enzymes that we break down. One of the most interesting things we’ve done recently is to up level the amount of omega fats that these athletes are taking. That’s really important for the nervous system, something that really hasn’t been considered up until recently.

KC: The nervous system is something that’s key in elite fitness now. [Retraining] the nervous system which is something that is so much different then in years past, but even recently fish oil’s have been shown to increase strength in workouts. Is that a nervous system thing?

Greg: I believe it probably is a nervous system thing. We have this wonderful communication that happens between the brain and down the spinal, out though the perifferial nervous system, out through to the muscles. Even then you can delve down into the muscle tissue into the protein chains that are the contractile apparatus of the body and then down into the mitochondria. All the way along that path way we need high quality carbohydrates. You need amazing amino acids, you need various different types of fats and specifically omega 3’s in various different locations fueled by hydration and other things. Around that we can really change the way people feel throughout the course of the day. Make their workouts much more effective. Even make their physical activity more enjoyable. A great example of that is after you finish your workout in the morning, refueling with the protein and the carbohydrate and the omega 3’s. A lot of people workout in the morning and then try to go to work. They arrive at work and they’re tired. Maybe that’s just because we have refueled properly after exercise.

KC: That’s funny because so many people don’t get that post exercise window. In fact there was a commercial some time ago where they said, hey you haven’t finished your workout until you drink this. Now what they’re drinking isn’t ideal, but the truth is you really missed a big window. Researchers say that 45 minutes or even shorter post workout, has the best muscle protein synthesis of any time of the day. I even read one study that showed that the worst digesting protein is 80% better digested during that window than the best absorbing protein 2 hours later.

Greg: Not only is the protein absorbed more easily at that time. If you have that protein it actually also improves all the carbohydrate metabolism as well. It’s a multifactorial thing that we’re seeing if we can get those nutrients into the body within that I believe it’s actually a 20 minute window. I just tell that to the athletes to make sure they’re not lazy and they miss it.

KC: I think you’re absolutely right, before it was said to be 2 hours. Clearly it’s not 2 hours, now a lot of guys will say 1 hour. You’re saying don’t wait an hour and take stuff that’s going to take an hour to digest either, so that 20 minutes is really a good time. So in other words you should pre-think that before you even get to the workout.

Greg: Absolutely. You have to have your nutrition really dialed in. It doesn’t take that long. If you have the oportunity to make some food and take it along with you that’s fantastic. Or you can use some of the Living Fuel products. What I do is take a scoop of SuperBerry before I go to the gym, and then when I’m done I make sure I have a shaker bottle ready with two scoops of SuperBerry and two scoops of two scoops of protein. I know that seems like a lot, but that’s what allows me to recover and then go to work and not be tired.

KC: There’s so many things you’re doing that people aren’t getting. Chocolate milk has shown to be shown to be an excellent recovery drink. Why? Because it has some protein, it has sugar, in fact I’ll mention the other piece, it has sugar and it has some antioxidant. So we know that antioxidants can speed recover as much as 50%. So if you can get all of these things like you just did in your post workout recovery you get. You get it before hand so you’re actually helping yourself during your workout. Then you get it post, now you’re getting things you don’t even know about. You’re getting anti-inflammation, anti-glycation, antioxidant and so on. It’s a tremendous benefit to do that. Now I want to say, you athletes out there that are just going to do chocolate milk, you now have to be careful because research done on chocolate milk with sugar in it. Most chocolate milk now has high fructose corn syrup. You know it doesn’t work the same in recovery, as sugar does. So if you’re drinking chocolate milk for that purpose, you must make sure it’s a sugar chocolate milk. So it’s an interesting little piece there. It’s a fantastic thing is that super food nutrition, what we talk about it is, we mix all the known best forms of the known nutrients, with the super foods, with nutrients we haven’t even discovered yet, and it has all these co-factors. So we’re learning things all the while, but we’re getting it done by mixing it all together to start with.

Greg: I believe in a balanced approach. I think that we are sometimes too isolated in terms of what we think. I’m not a huge fan of chocolate milk, I am a huge fan of chocolate, in many ways, and 90% coco is extremely good for you. I like whole food nutrition, I like super food nutrition, I think if we combine a balanced approach around some of the new knowledge we have on super food, I think we can really help people to live that healthy, high-performance, life that we all hope we can live. We do know now enough to be able to get that done, and to be able to live that kind of a life.

KC: Great stuff, Greg.

Greg: Thanks for having me on the show.

KC: Awesome. Pleasure. If you want some more detailed information about the kinds of things Greg is talking about, you can get his book “Super Bodies” it’s about to be released. I hope that’s helpful to you. God bless you and have a good day.

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