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Dave Asprey: The Bulletproof Executive


You can listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.

downloaditunesIn this weeks episode:-

  • Dave reveals his personal health journey & how he lost 100lbs [04:15]
  • What Dave eat’s in a day & why he doesn’t eat all morning sometimes [14:45]
  • The Bulletproof Diet. Why bulletproof coffee & intermittent fasting is so effective for health & longevity [20:10]
  • The fine line between CrossFit, exercise & overtraining [39:40]
  • Why he wrote the Better Baby Book [47:15]
  • This is a must: Dave’s single piece of advice for optimum health/wellness [55:10]
  • and much more…

dave_aspreyDave Asprey aka The Bullet Proof Executive is one exceptionally smart man. On top of that he’s a really great guy too! He shares with us his journey from being 297lbs (134kg) in weight to then hacking his health for the fastest & most effective results possible.

He’s also single handily changed the way I drink my coffee (& many others) in the morning. If you haven’t heard of the bulletproof coffee with MCT oil and grass-fed butter (yes you read that right), then it’s only a matter of time before you do! Guy

If you would like to learn more about Dave Asprey and the bullet proof diet, click here.

You can buy bullet proof coffee in Australia here.

Further reading: Better Baby Book

You can view all Health Session episodes here.

Did you enjoy the interview with Dave Asprey? Would love to hear you thoughts in the Facebook comments section below… Guy

 Dave Asprey: The bulletproof executive transcript

Guy Lawrence: I’m Guy Lawrence. This is Stuart Cooke. And our very special guest today is Mr. Dave Asprey. Mate, thanks for joining us. I really appreciate the time.

Dave Asprey: You’ve got it. I’m really glad to be here. I’m a huge fan of Australia. Love visiting.

Guy Lawrence: We’re in heaven over here. We both live near the ocean and we feel blessed, that’s for sure. Definitely.

Stuart Cooke: We certainly do. We make the most of it.

We’ve immersed ourselves in all things Bulletproof over the last month or so, because we knew that we’d be chatting to you. And I had a little bit of a question and a realization that you know a lot of stuff. A lot of stuff. And I think that if Google were a person, I think that person would be Dave Asprey. Have you figured out a way to connect to Google from your mind to kind of pull in this information? It’s insane.

Dave Asprey: Yeah, it’s actually this thing right here, see? It’s got a little Google USB port for the head and you just do that and. . . no. This is actually the upgraded focus Brain Trainer. It teaches you to move blood to the front of your head. But I haven’t got the Google direct connect, but I’ve often wished for just a docking station for whatever my PDA at the time is. It used to be a Palm Pilot. Now it’s an iPad or whatever. Samsung NX, I guess.

Stuart Cooke: I’m sure in the future it will all be very Matrix-style and we’ll dock ourselves into something. But let’s see what happens.

Guy Lawrence: Well, me and Stewie sat down the other day and we thought, Dave’s coming on the show, and what should we ask him? We had so many questions for you and so we’re gonna try to condense it and obviously for our listeners as well. And I thought we could start from the beginning, because I was listening to your Joe Rogan show, I think it was the first one, literally last week, and . . . listening to the Joe Rogan show and you mentioned that you were nearly 300 pounds overweight, which I didn’t realize.

Dave Asprey: I wasn’t 300 pounds overweight. I was 300 pounds in total; only a hundred pounds overweight. If I was 300 pounds overweight there’d be, like, stretch marks on my forehead.

Guy Lawrence: Fair enough.

Dave Asprey: I only have stretch marks around my midsection and, like, here. I do have a lot of stretch marks, but I got them when I was 16. It was no good.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, so I guess the question; the first question would be: Can you tell us about that journey from being overweight to where you are today, so people get to know a little bit about Dave if they’re not sure who you are.

Dave Asprey: Sure. It’s kind of funny, but I was just fat as a kid. And I never knew why. In fact, I always figured it was because I was too lazy or I ate too much; I didn’t have enough willpower or something like that.

And it got really bad. By the time I was done with my first four years of university, I was 297 pounds. I’d had three knee surgeries. I had arthritis in my knees when I was 14. And I was on antibiotics about once a month for 15 years straight for chronic sinusitis and strep throat and things like that.

I had nosebleeds five, 10 times a day, was pretty common. And I bruised easily and I still had played soccer for 13 years. I used to be a kind of competitive cyclist. But I was always fat. And it was kind of like, “Whatever. What can you do about it?”

And it was in my mid-20s I got really serious. Like: “This is enough.” And I started working out like six days a week, an hour and a half a day, 45 minutes of cardio, 45 minutes of weights. And the cardio was with a backpack full of bricks on a 15-degree incline, going up, not running but walking, enough that you’re panting like crazy.

And I never lost the weight. Got strong. Didn’t lose the weight. And I kept having the same problems. You know: bad skin, zits, body odor, just the whole nine yards. “What’s going on here?”

So I decided that I was gonna be a biohacker. I also noticed along the way here that my brain was failing. And this, maybe, is what really put a nail in that decision.

I was working at a company called 3Com in Silicon Valley. This was one of the pioneers in the networking business. It was 3Com or Cisco was gonna win and, well, Cisco won. But at the time, those were the two dominant players.

I would sit in meetings, and after the meeting, I would think, “I don’t really know what happened in there. I’m a zombie.” I’m sure I was there; people didn’t tell me I fell asleep but I’m pretty sure I was asleep. So, whatever.

And I got so concerned about this that I took out disability insurance at 26. Because I was scared: Like, how am I gonna make ends meet if I can’t work? I’m young. I should be in my prime and I think something’s wrong, but maybe it’s just me.
So I started measuring my performance on this simple solitaire game you can play on your computer called Freestyle. And I would plot it. And some days, the data showed I was a zombie. And it’s really liberating to have zombie data, because when you get that data it tells you that it’s not all in your head, so you can actually have a view of yourself.

That’s what we call self-awareness, really, but it was data-driven self-awareness. And what that did for me was it let me say, “All right. Now I need to attack a problem.” And being a computer hacker by trade, you know, I helped to create modern cloud computing; not like Al Gore created the Internet but, you know, I was at the company that created cloud computing called Exodus Communications and played a key role there.
So, given this whole: “How do you hack it? How do you get around it? How do you engineer a solution to a new problem?” I said, “All right. My brain is dead, so I’m gonna start taking smart drugs.” And it worked! I actually got my brain back enough that I could start upgrading the rest of my body.

And we go 15 years later, I’ve spent the last 10 years as president, chairman, or board member of an anti-aging research and non-profit group called Silicon Valley Health Institute. I’ve had a chance to talk to more than a hundred anti-aging doctors and researchers and physicians, and, kind of, people leading their field to understand what’s going on in the human body, what’s going on in the mind, how does the nervous system work, how does biochemistry work, how does the cell membrane affect things, what are neurotransmitters.

Not from a medical perspective. I’m married to a doctor and she knows more about the tibia, fibula, and the neck bone’s connected to the ankle bone stuff than I ever will, to be perfectly honest. But when it comes to hacking these systems to get the outcome you want, without knowing every intermediate step, which we don’t know in the human body. . . And, by the way, when you’re troubleshooting a complex cloud computing system, you don’t know every step in the middle either. You have to hypothesize and test.

So, that’s what I started doing with an N equals 1 experiment on myself way before Quantified Self was cool.

Guy Lawrence: That’s awesome. So, I guess, in a nutshell, that’s biohacking? Self-experimentation, to a degree?

Dave Asprey: There is two parts of it. There’s the Quantified Self angle, which isn’t really biohacking. This is kind of common. You get devices like this. This is a watch, although the battery’s dead, and it monitors your heart rate without a chest strap. And I’m actually; I’m a CTO of this company. It’s called Basis. And I usually only just wear it for show and it’s not that useful as a daily-wear watch. It’s not waterproof, for one thing. A slight problem. But it’s a cool gadget.

So, there’s also those scales where you weigh yourself every day. They upload to the web. And sleep monitors. I’m looking at; this is prototype one from a company called BEdit, which I’m super-excited about; I’m starting to work with those guys.
So, there’s all these devices that can tell you what’s going on in your body. Because, honestly, unless you’re a very unusual person, you probably suck at knowing what’s going on inside your biology.

You can teach yourself what’s going on. So, there’s this whole cognitive feedback loop where you’re, like, “OK, if I, at the end of the day or the week or the month, I look at what I did, I can learn more, and I can make a decision to do something different.”

The thing I discovered after doing that for a long time is that my intent and my decision would be: I’m gonna do acts to improve my health. Let’s say I’m not gonna eat bagels this week. Well, then, you’re in a meeting, halfway through the week, and you’re kinda tired and you’re kinda hungry and somehow you convince yourself that it’s a great idea to take a bite of that bagel. And then you go, “Damn it! I ate a bagel! I’m a failure. I’m a bad person.”

What’s going on there is a core part of biohacking. It’s that there’s parts of your nervous system way faster than your conscious thinking. And if you don’t manage those parts of your nervous system, they’ll convince you to eat the bagel. But it’s not actually you eating the bagel. It’s an avatar in your head eating the bagel. Right?

So, that’s what’s going on. And you can train that part of the body. It’s just like you train an animal. And the liberation that comes from understanding that when crazy thoughts pop into your head, or behaviours that are really not the behaviours that you intended, happen, that it’s a part of your automated defense systems of your body that are driving those behaviours, not your conscious decisions. And it’s also a sign, if you’re doing those things, that you need to learn how to manage the unconscious parts of your body, because that’s where all the trouble happens.

And the three kinds of trouble are really, really obvious. You’ll see these in any dog. Number one is: “Oh, look! Food! I’ll eat it. It doesn’t matter if it’s cat poop. It might be food. I’m gonna eat that, too.” Right?

Then you go, “All right. What else does a dog do? “Oh, look! A stick!” And distractibility; you’re all over the place.

And the final one, which is maybe my favorite, is, “Oh, look! A leg! I’ll go hump it.”

Those are the behaviours that get most people in trouble most of the time, and they’re all unconscious, high-speed behaviours that happen way faster than you can think about it and go: “Actually, come to think of it, I don’t want to hump that leg.” Your body’s already like, “Yeah, do it!” And it’s convincing you that you should do it. Well, that’s your body misbehaving. You’ve got to tell the body to behave itself.

Stuart Cooke: How would you; you have a lot of stuff going on in your life, I’m guessing. You know: with work and commitments and Bulletproof. Family. You know, a lot of stuff going on. How do you disconnect from that to rest and calm yourself, in the nighttime, you know, just to sleep.

Dave Asprey: Well, if you’re watching the video, let’s see. See that device back there? I connect my head up to it. OK. Not the one with all the dials and gauges. But the laptop, underneath them. That’s a neuro-feedback system. So I actually will play my brainwaves back to myself. You get the brainwaves from the head, and then you actually turn it into sounds and you play the sounds back to you.

So, my brain, even though it’s pretty darn highly trained; I’ve done this 40 years, the “Zen in 7 Days”-type thing and I have 40YearsOfZen.com. And things like that. So, I’m more aware than the average guy, but I’m sure there’s people that are more aware than I am. I just cheated. I didn’t spend an hour a day mediating for 40 years to get there. I spent a week hooked up to expensive computers.

But this is kind of a junior version of that, and what I’m doing there is I’m laying down on the floor, sitting in a chair, and just listening. And I hear music. And then the music kind of has static. And the static is happening when my brain is flopping from one state to another.

And the brain doesn’t like static very much. So, it’s says, “Oh, wait. I was flopping.” And it stops flopping around and it calms down. That’s one thing I might do to disconnect.

The other thing is, I have a 6-year-old and a 3-year-old and my computer would, like, break half the stuff from my office if I told it out of all this stuff it’s stuck to. But if I turned it around, you’d be seeing my office, my biohacking lab here, there’s a deck overlooking a little pond, and a forest surrounds me. So, I go out, I have lunch with my kids. I work from home. I work really hard. I work long hours. I’m up late at night. I’m talking with people. This is my fourth podcast today.

Guy Lawrence: Really? Wow.

Dave Asprey: Oh, yeah. And you can see my energy level. I’m doing pretty good, right?

Guy Lawrence: Absolutely.
Dave Asprey: This is a guy who used to have chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme Disease, small intestine bacteria overgrowth, mercury toxicity, obesity, pre-diabetes, really thick blood and high risk for a stroke and heart attack. Right?

If I can do this, imagine what you guys can do, because you’re nowhere near as screwed up as I used to be.

Guy Lawrence: Your days are packed, right? And everyone complains about short of time, they make bad food choices, there’s a million things of why they can’t look after their health. If you’re so busy, what do you eat through the day as well? How do you stay on top of that?

Dave Asprey: Number one, snacking is for people who are starving. You don’t need to snack if your body is well-fed. So, for breakfast this morning I had Bulletproof coffee made with upgraded coffee beans, which, by the way, you can buy in Australia. We actually have them stocked there now. And it’s OptimOZ is the name of the company.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, we know Leon.

Dave Asprey: He’s totally Bulletproof. He’s an awesome dude.
So, definitely check out OptimOZ. You get the beans there. And does it really matter, the beans? Actually, it does. If it didn’t, I wouldn’t make the darn things. Like, I’m not interested, and certainly not in the business of making stuff that’s, like, “Oh, yeah, everyone else has that but I have it, too.” I try to find things that are unique and that work really effectively. And most of the world. . . Actually, that’s not true. Europe and Asia have certain standards for coffee that other countries don’t have. So, while we’re getting poor-quality coffee that affects your brain thought.

So, you start Bulletproof coffee, the beans, grass-fed butter, and, by the way, there’s awesome grass-fed butter available in Australia. When I was there, I found three or four different brands when I looked around. I thought that was kind of cool. And it was really good, too.

And then, from there, I added Upgraded Collagen, which is a protein supplement that I make. I don’t always put that in in the morning. Usually I just do Bulletproof intermittent fasting, which is just the coffee, MCT oil, upgraded MCT, upgraded coffee, and butter.

Some days, because I worked out two days ago, I’ve gotta have a little extra protein. I’ll do that.

Lunch, I had a salad with a ton of guacamole. Slide a little salad dressing on it, made from scratch, relatively easy to make. Immersion blender, sliced-up cucumbers, and some cold salmon left over from either last night or this morning. So, basically, it’s salmon salad.

And that was around 1:30. And then I haven’t had any snacks. That would be completely like; I don’t even want to have a snack. I’d get tired if I had a snack.
So, I will get again. . . Let’s see. It’s 5:30 my time. I’ll have dinner around 6:30 and it will probably be like a steak or a hamburger, a bunch of vegetables prepared from the Upgraded Chef book, which is basically a soup. I’ll put a bunch of steamed vegetables, a bunch of butter, MCT, blend it with some spices, and maybe some other vegetables or some other side dish. I’m not sure. I’m not gonna be cooking that dinner.

If I was cooking it, I could have it on the table within 20 minutes of starting to cook, and that would be the biggest meal of the day. Lunch was a five-minute meal. Breakfast was a five-minute meal.

Stuart Cooke: Pretty quick. So, starches, grains at all?

Dave Asprey: Probably not today. If I was gonna have any kind of starch, it would be at the evening meal. And, grains, the only grain I would touch would be white rice. The rest of the grains, honestly, if you can afford it, don’t eat them. They are not gonna make you live longer. They are not good for your health.

Stuart Cooke: And even these new “wonder grains,” the, like quinoa, I guess, that they are saying is kind of this fantastic health-giving grain?

Dave Asprey: Are those the same people that said soy was a fantastic, health-giving food?

Stuart Cooke: Could be. Could well be.

Dave Asprey: Here’s the thing. It doesn’t have strict gluten in it, but if you were a seed, let’s say, who evolved as a seed. Your function is to not be food for animals because then you don’t get to sprout. Your function is to sprout. Your function is not to spoil, because there’s a lot of bacterial and fungal pressure on carbohydrate sources.

So, basically, everyone wants to get what’s in you. So, do you just sit there and die and then not evolve as a species and become extinct, or do you develop natural pesticides and coat yourself in them, which make animal sick if they eat too much of you and repel other invaders?

Well, that would be what we call “whole grains.” So, grains have phytic acid and they have a whole bunch of other defense systems, mostly lectin-based, which is a kind of protein that sticks; a kind of sugar that sticks to. . . I’m sorry; I have it backwards. It’s a kind of protein that sticks to a sugar that lines your cells. And it’s a problem.

So, if you were to eat a legume or a grain, what you’d want to do is you want to soak it for a long time and then you want to sprout it a little bit to deactivate most of the defense systems.

But, honestly, even if you do that, you’re still getting a lot of starch. It’s gonna raise your insulin. It’s gonna raise your blood glucose levels higher than you want. So, why don’t you just eat white rice, which is the least toxic of all of the grains? Don’t eat it all the time. Not for breakfast. Eat it a couple of times a week on a Bulletproof diet once a week. Like, have a day where you eat a lot of starch to refuel so you don’t get adrenal stress from being always in fat-burning mode.

But you want to be in fat-burning mode a couple of days a week, at minimum.

Guy Lawrence: I’ve got a question for you, Dave, and I’m sort of jumping forward a bit, but with the Bulletproof coffee, because I’ve been doing that now probably for a month. I’ve been putting the MCT on in and the grass-fed butter in the morning and I put it up on Facebook and the first thing, question, was, you know, “Why?” And they were, like, “Why MCT oil? Why intermittent fasting?” So, I thought I’d ask you that question so you could explain it, because you’ll explain it a lot better than I would.

Dave Asprey: All right. First, intermittent fasting is well-established to change your genetic expression in such a way that it replicates long-lived animals. So, basically, if you want to live a long time, you at least want to make an animal live a long time, you cut back on the number of calories they eat, and they live longer.

That’s true for humans, too, and there’s a group of people, some of whom are my friends, who have gone on those radical, low-calorie diets and they walk around looking like sticks and they’re super-thin. And I don’t actually advocate that in the slightest. But it is an anti-aging sort of proposed technique.

You can get most of the same benefits of doing that by just not eating for 18 hours a day.

Now, if you’re like I was in my; when I was 25 or 28, the idea of not eating for 18 hours was repellant and offensive, because it would disable me. I used to, like, stop meetings at 11:45. “Sorry, guys. I know that the meeting goes till lunch, but if I don’t have lunch right now, I’m gonna kill one of you and eat your arm.”

And, literally, I would just stand up and walk out. And people were, like, “Are we gonna finish the meeting?” And I was, like, “Sorry. I don’t really care because I’m not here.”

Guy Lawrence: “I have to eat.”

Dave Asprey: Yeah. And now I’m like, 18 hours, whatever. I can go 24, 36. It’s really not a big deal. At 36 hours I’m gonna be kind of hungry, a little tired, but it’s not gonna kill me.

And what’s going on there, with intermittent fasting, is that you’re telling your body, “OK, there’s no food here, so you might as well take all this stuff you’re ready to digest food and use it to clean yourself out.” It’s a processed called autophagy. And it turns on.

So, you get some real benefits, including weight loss, that come just from intermittent fasting. The down side is that people who live a high-intensity life like I do, or even just people who have kids and a job, OK, you’re gonna end your 18 hours right at about 2 o’clock in the afternoon. So, the time when you’re coldest and tiredest is right in the middle of your workday. And you’re gonna be cranky. So, people can’t stick with it.

What I did with Bulletproof intermittent fasting is I said, well, let’s look at what fasting really does. It turns off the protein digestion and the sugar digestion cycles. But if you eat only pure fat, which, in this case, with coffee, what happens is that your body thinks you’re still fasting but you get all the energy from the fat. So, you get this laser focus; this amazing energy.

And why grass-fed butter and MCT oil? Let’s talk first about inflammation. Inflammation is a major issue in human performance. If you’re inflamed, you’re less likely to perform well and you’re more likely to get sick. In fact, you might just be sick, which itself can be a cause of inflammation.
So, when you eat butter from grass-fed cows, you’re getting a short-chain fatty acid called butyric acid. It’s shown in publicly available studies to decrease brain inflammation. When you have a decrease in brain inflammation, your brain can actually conduct the electricity faster. You think faster.

Butyric acid also is one of the things that cures your gut. So, this is just a normal thing butter does, but short-chain fatty acids help to keep the gut lining intact. So, people who practice this Bulletproof intermittent fasting and put grass-fed butter in their coffee are getting the benefits of the grass-fed butter.

And then we have the benefits of coffee oils themselves. You need to brew your coffee using the upgraded beans without a paper filter. This means a French press, a gold filter in your coffee maker or espresso. Coffee oils themselves are anti-inflammatory for two different inflammation pathways in the brain. So, you’re using coffee as like a performance-enhancing kind of herbal thing.

And you do that and, to cap it all off, you add upgraded MCT oil. Upgraded MCT oil does something kind of magic. It’s six times stronger than coconut oil in terms of this one effect. And the effect is that normally we burn sugar all the time. And it takes 26 steps to turn sugar in your diet into ATP or the fuel in your cells. It takes three steps to turn the MCT oil into ATP energy in your cells. MCT goes to BHB and then it goes to co-enzyme A and then it goes straight to ATP.

What this means is, think about, like, a hybrid car. You have an electric motor and a gas motor. And you’re the same way. You can run on fat and you can run on sugar. Well, if you want to be most powerful, you should metabolically be flexible to work either one when your body needs it, or even, better yet, to burn both at the same time.

So, when you’re drinking this cup of coffee, you’re seriously hacking your brain. You’re turning off inflammation. You’re giving it an addition energy source it didn’t have before. And you’re telling your body and your brain, including your stomach, like: “Hey, it’s time to take a break here.”

So, it’s having the benefits of intermittent fasting without paying the price. In this case, you can have your butter and eat it, too.

Stuart Cooke: Wow. That’s insane. Now, I have to confess, and I don’t know how this is gonna go down, but I have never had a cup of coffee in my life, ever.

Dave Asprey: Why’d you let him on the podcast?

Guy Lawrence: I’ve been putting cups of coffee in front of him: “Mate, you’ve gotta try this. This changed the way I drink coffee forever.” And he. . .

Stuart Cooke: And another confession, Guy, I’ve been sneaking some of your MCT oil into my smoothie that I’ve been making ‘round at your place.

Dave Asprey: I do that all the time. MCT in smoothies is awesome. And if you want to, like, rock your world, make guacamole. Just mash up avocados and squirt MCT in it and mash it up some more. It changes the mouth feel of foods without changing the flavor. It’s phenomenal. I put it in everything. I pour it on my vegetables. I don’t like going without it.

Stuart Cooke: We do that. I had a whole avocado coconut oil smoothie just before we came on here. But I am intrigued to want to try a cup of your Bulletproof coffee now that you’ve explained exactly what’s happening with it.

Dave Asprey: There are, I would say, I know probably a hundred people who didn’t drink coffee who decided to try coffee as a nutritional supplement, essentially. Where they were saying, OK, green tea has certain known effects. Well, coffee does, too.

And what no one talks about is that coffee is the number one source of antioxidants in most of the Western world. It blows wine out of the water. If you’re going around having a glass of red, nice Australian wine thinking it’s for the antioxidants, like, seriously, have two espresso shots and you’ll have, like, 17 cups of wine worth of antioxidants. It’s that big of a difference.
Guy Lawrence: Is that right?

Dave Asprey: Yeah.

Stuart Cooke: How does that stack up against green tea as an antioxidant?

Dave Asprey: It dominates green tea. Green tea’s number two but coffee wins.

Guy Lawrence: There you go. OK.

Stuart Cooke: All right. You know what you’re going to be doing tomorrow, Guy. You’re going to be making two cups of coffee and I think I’ll record myself drinking my very first cup of coffee and we’ll put it out across Facebook.

Guy Lawrence: Fantastic.

Dave Asprey: That’s gonna be cool. I really want, not just to have you drink it, I want a recording of you 30 seconds to an hour after you drink it going, “Whoa!” And here’s warning: Well, actually, you already take MCT oil. You’ll be fine. There are a group of people who have to start out with just a teaspoon of MCT oil until they get used to it, because their body is turned off metabolically that if you turn everything on all at once, they get, like, they feel sweaty and hot and it’s a little bit uncomfortable.

Stuart Cooke: Oh, OK. OK. And I hear that loose bowels as well, if you’re not used to this kind of stuff? I mean, it will clean you out that way?

Dave Asprey: We call it “Disaster Pants.”

Stuart Cooke: Right. OK.

Stuart Cooke: If you take too much of it and you’ve never had it before, it’s bad. In fact, there’s a reporter from Yahoo! News, really awesome woman, super into Bulletproof, and I’m not gonna name her because, well, I said “Yahoo! News”; maybe it’s too late. But she ignored the warning, being kind of a Bulletproof mindset, said, I’m, like, “Start slowly!” And she took like a half a cup of MCT oil in her first coffee. Which is a big dose. I think that would affect me and I kind of take the stuff all the time. And she said, “Ah, I felt kind of strange afterward.” And at the end of her story she kind of reported that.

But, yeah, that’s what happens if you take too much. So, it’s a really powerful thing. It’s like the octane booster stuff you can put in your car. You can buy it at the automotive store and you put it in the tank and it raises. . . Well, if you only put that in your gas tank, well, you’re gonna start your car up and it will shoot out the back. It’s the same idea.

Stuart Cooke: I’m going to shop for a man nappy this afternoon. And then I’ll come round, I’ll be very prepared at Guy’s place.

Guy Lawrence: I like that you’re trying it at my place, not yours.

Stuart Cooke: I’ve got kids here. I don’t want to mess the toilet.

Dave Asprey: You already put it in your smoothies. You’ll be fine.

Guy Lawrence: We should give that a go.

Stuart Cooke: We are; Guy and myself, we’re very focused on nutrition and we’re gonna hit you with the million dollar question of cause. Which is kind of crazy. But in a nutshell, why are getting fatter?

Dave Asprey: There’s a lot going on there.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah.

Dave Asprey: The short answer is, we could blame Apple; the computers. They seem responsible for lots of environmental ills. So. . .

Stuart Cooke: OK. Let’s blame them.

Dave Asprey: I’m only saying that in jest. There’s many different factors involved. But one of them actually is your electronic devices. And it has to do with circadian rhythm and how you go to sleep and how well you sleep and your melatonin levels.

Stuart Cooke: Very interesting. We’ve done a bit of research into EMR and EMF as well, and being aware that we’re living in an environment now where we are exposed to wifi and stuff like that and how that can mess up with your natural rhythms of your body. So, I can certainly understand where you’re coming from there.

Dave Asprey: That’s a part of it. I don’t think EMF is necessarily the top thing that makes us fat. It increases myological stress. And stress does cause weight gain.

But it’s actually the light that comes off these devices. One of the things I do with my Bulletproof coaching clients, and part of what I do is I set aside time every week and I have a set of coaching clients around the globe and I just do it over Skype, but we talk about, like, hedge fund managers and entrepreneurs and CEOs and people who are really into high performance and occasionally like a pro athlete or someone.

But it’s usually people who are really, like, “How do I have the energy and the focus to just go all day long and to manage all these stresses in life?” And it’s always sleep that’s a problem when we start our sessions. And then we hack that first.

So, staring at a bright light, including your iPhone screen, including your computer, at night, after the sun goes down, really jacks up your biological systems. You don’t make melatonin for four hours after you look at a bright light, even if you get up in the middle of the night, you flip on the lights to go the to bathroom, flip ‘em off, you’re done. You’re not making melatonin again that night. And that’s a problem.

So, in our house, we have a light in our bathroom, and this is something I carry on the website, but it’s a light that doesn’t emit any blue spectrum. It’s like a yellow bulb. And when you turn that on, you don’t hurt your melatonin.

When I’m here in my office at night, I have software that turns down the intensity and changes the color spectrum. But it’s not enough. Either I wear orange glasses or I do this.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah! Right. OK.

I’ve seen the orange glasses, and I’m aware of the blue light, and. . . Yeah, insane. So, where would we get the glasses from and how would we wear them?

Dave Asprey: The cheapest glasses are laser protection goggles made by Uvex on Amazon. I have a pair right by my bed so I’m not gonna, like, disconnect from the headphones and grab them. Normally they’re on my desk.

And you just wear them after the sun goes down. You don’t have to wear them every night. But you really will sleep better.

And the other thing is, turn off the LEDs in your room. Every single LED, whatever color, but especially blue and green. Put black tape over them. The curtains, if there’s light coming around, get another curtain to put over the top of that. You should be able to open your eyes at night and not see anything. When you do that, you will sleep profoundly.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah. That’s insane. Sleep has been a big topic, I think, especially for us. Me in particularly because I have; my sleep has been shot for the last five years. But I think I’ve been through a journey where we’ve looked at magnesium. We’ve looked at melatonin supplementation as well. We’ve looked at EMF; moving the bed, you know, outside of heavy fields.

But it was only the other night that I thought, you know, I reckon it might be down to my sinuses. Because I was a mouth-breather at night. And I thought, wow, that’s really insane. And I have quite a clear nose, and when I lay down, my nose gets quite stuffy and I breathe through my mouth. So, I did a little experiment last night and bought a nasal decongestant and blast it up each nostril. Super clear. Went down and had a great night’s sleep. Which is insane.

Dave Asprey: You need to do an allergy, like a blood allergy panel. If this is happening when you lie down but not the rest of the time. . . What’s your comforter made out of? How old is it? Do you have a dust mite cover on your bed? And maybe you have an allergy to dust mites. But environmental allergies will decimate your sleep. And so will food allergies. You could have a dairy intolerance or something. And if you’re eating dairy protein and you shouldn’t be, that would cause your sinuses to be more congested.

But I see this all the time. In fact, even for me this was a problem about 18 months ago. My wife is from Sweden and they sleep with these ridiculously thick, like, sheet things but they’re; I grew up in a desert. I sleep with, like, a sheet and a blanket like a civilized person. But these Vikings, I tell ya, featherduster things. Whatever. So, I noticed she fluffed it. I was, like, “Bleh! What is that?” She said, “Oh, these don’t ever go bad. These feather things are good forever.” Like, it’s 20 years old, get it out of here and let’s try it without. And my sleep quality improved, too.

So, check out your mattress. And they have these, like, closed-cell, hypoallergenic covers. Totally get one of those. Put an air filter in your room. And see what happens. You might be amazed.

But that’s not why we’re all fat. It’s only a part of it.

You’ve got to read my sleep-hacking post. There’s a bunch more stuff like that.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, I’ve been through them and we’re gonna be pushing it out to our readers. Because I know that sleep is a huge thing.

Guy Lawrence: But would it be fair to say, than, that if your sleep falls apart then that’s the base of; that’s gonna cause all the other problems as well. Because if you’re not sleeping well and you’re tired, you’re gonna start making wrong decisions as well, aren’t you?

Dave Asprey: Well, not necessarily. I did two years where I ate 4,000 calories a day. I didn’t exercise at all. And I slept five hours or less per night every night. In fact, sometimes only two hours.

And I actually grew a six-pack during that time. And I don’t think I made bad decisions.

You can train yourself to, as you go through stress conditioning, to make great decisions while you’re tired. And one of the things that’s really strange is that a lot of what happens when you’re operating in a tired state is that that dog in your body that I was referencing earlier; it’s worried. It’s like, “Oh, my God! I’m tired. I’m gonna die.” And it has this little: “Go to sleep! Aaa!”

So, there’s a lot of, like, nervous energy that comes from being tired that’s unnecessary. It’s when you train that part of your nervous system to basically accept the fact that you’re tired and you’re not gonna die, you’re still gonna do what needs doing and you’re gonna to go to sleep, that’s what happens in boot camp in the military. That’s one of the reasons that they torture you like that, so you realize, yeah, you can function at the level you need to function, even if you’re really tired. And when you realize that, the stress of being tired, not the stress of not getting enough sleep, but actually just the worry about the state, goes away and suddenly your performance goes up dramatically. And I’ve certainly done that.

Stuart Cooke: So, how many hours a night would you get of quality sleep?

Dave Asprey: I get about five hours a night, usually. Lately, in the last six months, I’m doing an experiment. I’m like, OK, maybe I really do need more. So, I’ve gotten my average up to five hours and 57 minutes over the past six months. I have a little monitoring device.

Stuart Cooke: I was gonna say, can you be a little bit more precise in that timing?

Guy Lawrence: Would you increase that sleep if people are exercising a lot?

Dave Asprey: Oh, absolutely. One of the reasons that I’m a huge fan of the exercise protocols on the Bulletproof Executive, which are based largely on Body By Science by Doug McGuff is, well, I don’t really have a lot of recovery time. So, I’m going to, after this, after we’re done here, I’m gonna go up and have dinner with the kids, play with the kids, spend some quality time with my wife, and around 9 p.m. I’m gonna come back here and I have another three hours of stuff scheduled. And then I’m probably gonna write something and I’ll go to bed around 2 and I’ll wake up around 7:30 or 8.

And I do this over and over and over and over. So, what was your original question? I forget.

Guy Lawrence: Increasing sleep with exercise.

Dave Asprey: So, basically, if I work out, I’m gonna have to add at least an hour to that. So what I’ll do today is I’ll probably stand on my whole-body vibration platform (I have an Ultra Vibe) and that’s gonna get my lymphatic circulation going, it’s gonna get all the muscles firing, more so than a walk for an hour would, really. Because 30 times a second, my body’s doing this.

And while I’m doing that, I can relax, I can close my eyes, or, heck, I can watch something on TV if I want to, like it’s totally free time.

But I’m only gonna lift weights once this week.

Stuart Cooke: So, for those of us that don’t have access to a system like you just explained, is there anything that we can do that will simulate the effects?

Dave Asprey: Well, the rebounder, the old little trampoline that you jump on? It’s a really good detoxing thing. It’s good strengthening. It keeps your bones strong. The problem is, you’re gonna do one a second. I’m doing 30 a second. So, you might want to rebound for a half-hour or something.

Guy Lawrence: Three days.

Stuart Cooke: That’s awesome. Guy, I think why don’t we go into the overtraining as well.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, sure, absolutely. Because that was another question. You know, I CrossFit a fair bit. I see guys that do a lot of training. A lot. And I’m always conscious of where’s that line between exercise for, you know, athleticism, and then also overtraining, and, you know, doing yourself more harm than good long-term. What would your take on that be?

Dave Asprey: I love the intensity of CrossFit. I don’t like the frequency of CrossFit.

And it’s so easy to make a daily habit, and so I totally understand why you’d want to do that. And when I used to exercise six days a week, that made it really easy because you just do it every day. It’s much harder to stick with something you do once or twice a week. It requires a calendar and scheduling and an amount of self-discipline a lot of people don’t have.

So, with CrossFit, I see this very often in my clients. In fact, one of them who lives in Australia was getting ready to compete in the CrossFit Games and just, like, lost his mojo. Like, his passion for life was going down. And he’s a pretty high-performance guy. And I said, “Look. Your sleep quality is disrupted.” One of things that comes from overtraining is completely useless sleep and not very much of it.

And I said, “Why don’t you just get a cortisol panel? Like, get a blood test. And let’s see. I can predict what’s gonna happen here.” And he got it and his cortisol was sky-high. So he backed off on his number of workouts and his zest for life returned very quickly. It helps, too; he had made a mistake some people make on the Bulletproof Diet. They go low-carb and they feel so amazing when they’re eating just the meat, vegetables, and 60 percent fat, maybe, from the healthy kinds of fat. You just have just this Bulletproof state. It feels so amazing when you get there.

The problem is, you stay in it. He wasn’t doing the carbohydrate refueling that I recommend for guys at least once a week. If you’re lifting heavy during CrossFit, you probably need to do that twice a week. And there’s some people who try to stay in ketosis all the time and do CrossFit and your adrenals are not gonna like that eventually.

So, it’s a dangerous thing to be overtrained. It’s no different to overtrain than it is to starve yourself by not eating enough of the right food or to be under, like, huge amounts of emotional stress. Even, like, a divorce or, you know, your house burning down or something like that. The level of stress your body goes under, it doesn’t matter if it comes from exercise or nutrition or factors emotionally around you. You have a bucket of stress you can handle every day, and we measure that in adrenal reserve.
So, if you’re gonna kind of beat the crap out of your body by overtraining at that level, you need to support your adrenals first and foremost. Number one recommendation: a teaspoon, maybe half a teaspoon, of salt in the morning. Sea salt in a glass of water, right as soon as you wake up.

And that sounds a little weird, but when you wake up, here’s what happens in your body. This is not what happens up here. This is what happens in a mammal; the dog inside you. So, your eyes open and it says: “I’m gonna have to get out of bed. If I stand up real quick, there might not be enough blood pressure, so there won’t be blood in the brain. If that happens, I’ll fall down and hit my head on a rock and a tiger will eat me. Then I would die. That would suck.” So, it’s an emergency situation.

So, immediately the adrenals turn on. They create cortisol and adrenaline and the cortisol is working really hard to raise potassium like it does in the morning to lower potassium, which happens in morning. Well, if you give it the sodium that it’s trying to do, it stops freaking out and at that point you’ve saved that adrenal reserve for later in the day to handle other stressors in life.

And this is a really powerful technique. And it’s something they use for people who have dysfunctional adrenal glands. But you can use it even if you have functioning adrenal glands to give yourself more kick later in the day.

The down side? If you have too much salt in the morning, it’s gonna give you Disaster Pants. So, start with half. . .

Guy Lawrence: So, if you up the salt and up the MCT if you haven’t done it before, then you’re in for a treat.

Dave Asprey: Pretty much the worst of all is if you do salts; a ton of salts, a ton of MCT, maybe some extra magnesium, and then stand on the whole-body vibration platform.

Stuart Cooke: That is fascinating. So, you take the salt before you get out of bed, so you’d have it by your bedside table?

Dave Asprey: That is the most ideal way to do it but then you have to think ahead. I just kind of wake up in the morning and I pop a handful of amino acids and stuff like that. I throw some salt in the hand and swallow it.

Guy Lawrence: Bang. Fantastic.

Stuart Cooke: So, you’re talking about popping salt and amino acids. Supplementation. I hear on the grapevine that you supplement quite well, and in the past you have taken quite a lot of supplements. What do you currently take?

Dave Asprey: It’s kind of a long list, still. At the height at my, kind of, anti-aging and also recovery regimen, recovering from years of my body not working very, I took 187 capsules a day.

Guy Lawrence: Wow.

Dave Asprey: Yeah. So, I think I had Ray Kurzweil by two capsules or something. This famous inventor who also has an anti-aging program and all.

And that requires a certain amount of organization and planning, and it also is kind of expensive. But what I do now is I have kind of three groupings a day. There’s one in the morning, because there’s things that work best on an empty stomach or things where it doesn’t matter. So, I take those when I first wake up.

Then there’s a group of things that you take with a meal. And if I’m on the road, I’ll take them usually with dinner. If I’m at home, I’ll usually take them with lunch. It doesn’t really matter.

And those are things that are gonna upset your stomach if you take them on an empty stomach, or things that require fat in order to be absorbed. And then the final thing is right before bed I take another small handful of pills. And these are things that enhance sleep and recovery. So, kind of in reverse order. At night, I would take GABA, theanine, magnesium, vitamin C, and glutathione; the liposomal form, in fact, that I was squirting in before the show. The stuff; upgraded glutathione.

Guy Lawrence: I’ve got that. Yeah, I take that, yeah.

Dave Asprey: Yeah, and it doesn’t taste great. I’m working on making it taste better.

Guy Lawrence: It’s interesting taste. The first time I had a shot of that under my tongue, I was, like, “Whoa! That’s pretty. . .”

Stuart Cooke: Well, the smell is pretty extreme. It smells powerful.

Dave Asprey: It’s a sulfur-bearing molecule. It is made out of sulfur and it is not pleasant-tasting, but I don’t know if either of you felt really strong effects from it. A lot of people really notice it. And I even know a nationally renowned author who’s a shaman and writes about shamanic experiences in Peru and things like that who uses glutathione regularly because he can get into those really advanced meditation states better for it.

So, I have no doubt in my mind that glutathione enhances cognitive function and there’s lots of studies about that. So, it also works for detox reasons. And we live in a world full of chemicals that cavemen didn’t deal with, so the idea that I’m gonna get my vitamins from my foods, great, just get your toxins from Mother Nature and you’ll be perfectly balanced. Not gonna happen.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, well, cognitive function I guess, Guy, try a couple of sprays tomorrow. See what happens. See how that works for us.

We had a question regarding a book that you’ve written as well. And kind of moving forward a little bit. It’s a babies book. Now, I’ve got three kids who have got lots of friends with books. There it is.

Dave Asprey: I don’t know if you can see it.

Stuart Cooke: I can see it.

Dave Asprey: There we go. No, that’s not my wife, by the way. Stock photos. Wiley, my publisher, was evil about that. They’re like, “No.” I’m like, “You haven’t even seen the photos!” They said, “We don’t care. We always use stock photos.”

Stuart Cooke: I wondered if you could just briefly explain what the book is about, as well, for our audience.

Dave Asprey: Sure. The Better Baby Book (by the way, BetterBabyBook.com would be the place to go to learn more) is what my wife and I did to reverse her infertility. When she was 35, she was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome and told she wouldn’t be able to have kids. We had our first child at 39 and our second at 42 without any fertility treatments other than what’s in the book.

And what’s in the book is how do you use food and the environment to change the way your body reacts and to change even the genetic expression of your children.
We learned, about 15 years ago, that the environment changes your genetic expression and those changes are inheritable. We learned then and then no one ever said what to do with that information. So, I went out and, as a biohacker, we compiled 1300 references to all sorts of things you could do to decrease inappropriate inflammation, to reduce the chances of autoimmune problems, and to increase pregnancy health.

And our midwife, who has delivered 700 kids, said of Lana; she said, “You have the healthiest maternal tissues of any woman of any age I’ve ever worked with.” This is to a 42-year-old woman. Which is pretty amazing, because she’s delivered babies from 24-year-olds quite frequently.
So, to be able to have that healthy of a pregnancy blew our midwife away and she convinced us to write the book about all the things we had done to give our kids every advantage that was already theirs. We just wanted to maximize the chances of what was already them, just giving them the opportunity to express it.

The results have been really profound and there’s lots of women now who visit my wife for her coaching practice over Skype. She helps women with fertility and with pregnancy know what to eat and know what to do and look at their progesterone and estrogen levels and things like that.

And I wrote this book because my goal is for there to be 10,000 less children with autism as a result of the program in the book. And I wrote it before The Bulletproof Executive, which is the book I’ve been itching to write. But I wrote this because, honestly, you have the most leverage. The younger you are when you start biohacking or optimizing systems and looking at how the environment affects you, the more leverage you have. So, preventing problems in the womb has the highest leverage. Trying to take a 90-year-old person and make them young again is a lot more work, a lot more pain, a lot more money, and a lot harder to do than taking a baby and just helping them form properly in the first place. That’s why I put so much energy and about four years into writing this book.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, fantastic. We saw the little video, I can’t remember, you were talking on a microphone and you mentioned the book and it’s just fascinating stuff. And one thing that intrigued me as well is what you feed your kids as well. Because I think so many parents struggle with that. And what we see, isn’t it, Stu, you know obviously you see it a lot more as well with. . . It’s amazing.

Dave Asprey: It depends when you start. So, my wife, I mentioned she’s Swedish, so sardines are a treat or chicken liver. So, when you eat things; at least when the mother eats things, the baby gets a taste for them later in life. And when you feed them to children when they’re very young, they get used to it.

So, my kids, they eat meat, they eat lamb, and they eat beef, and they love avocados. And vegetables are something you eat raw or cooked; it doesn’t really matter. I don’t get away with cutting any vegetable we eat without them walking into the kitchen and saying, “Can I have some of that?”

So, cauliflower’s good, broccoli’s good, all of that, because it’s just food. There’s no discussion about it.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, right.

Dave Asprey: And if they say, “I don’t like that,” at the table, then: “OK, that’s fine. But it’s what we’re having for dinner. You don’t have to eat it.” “I want something else!” “Well, actually, that’s not what we’re having for dinner.”

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, that’s how it is.

Dave Asprey: They’ve never left the table; they’ve never left the table hungry. They think about it, they decide what to do, and there was one time, my 3-year-old, he’s a boy, so he’s a bit more strong-willed. And he said, you know, like, “OK, fine. I’m going.” And an hour later: “I’m hungry!” “You’re gonna be hungry till morning.” That was the last time he ever did that.
So, honestly, your kids, if they eat normal foods; normal on a Western diet, they’re starving inside. Literally, they have food cravings all the time caused by the foods they’re eating. So, they have a desperate need to eat. And of course they want to eat things that are gonna give them the most glucose and the most fat, because that’s what the liver uses to remove toxins from the body. You want to oxidize something, you need the fuel, and those are the two fuel sources. Protein’s crappy fuel. It makes more toxins in the liver than it takes out.

So, when you get to that perspective and you realize how hungry your kids are like that, number one, give them fat. They’ll calm down and stop misbehaving so much. Butter? Yes. MCT oil? Absolutely, my kids get MCT oil. And they go to school and all their friends are eating snacks and my kids are like, “I guess we’ll have a snack.” But they don’t snack at home. They don’t need snacks. And that’s amazing.

But when they’re properly fed, they behave really well and they focus and when you’re a parent, it doesn’t matter if your kids misbehave a little while. If you’re on path to making them have the biochemistry so they can focus and behave, then deal with it. When they say, “I don’t like it,” say, “Great! We’ll take it away and you’ll be hungry.” They’ll learn to like it pretty fast.

Stuart Cooke: Absolutely. We’re on a campaign to completely eradicate wheat. It’s time. It has to happen. I watched a podcast of yours a few weeks ago with the chap who wrote Wheat Belly and it was just. . .

Dave Asprey: Dr. Davis! He’s a great guy.

Stuart Cooke: Fascinating.

Dave Asprey: Yeah, and look at his credentials. I mean, Track Your Plaque. That guy’s a leading cardiologist. He’s not messing around in that book. And he’s right. It’s not just about getting fat or getting autoimmunity. It’s about your brain. Wheat makes you stupid.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah. And it’s a tricky one, so we’re gonna be tackling that over the course of the next month or so. But when we’ve nailed that one, and we’re not too far away, I think we’ll be well on the way to good times.

Dave Asprey: It helps. Just watch out. It’s not something to take out gradually. It’s crack. It’s an opiate substance, the way it’s digested. So, it turns into something called a gluteomorphin and when you have wheat one day, even just one bite, “Oh, it’s Saturday. We’ll celebrate. We’re just gonna have a little pizza. Just one slice.” Right? The next day, the little Labrador in your head’s gonna say, “You know what? I’m starving because I need more wheat and I’m addicted to the stuff. I think it would be a good idea to have just one more piece.”

And you’ll convince yourself, because of that input, that it’s time to have just one more piece, and you’ll be just like someone who’s shooting heroin in their arm. “Oh, yeah, I’m giving it up this time. I’m sure I’m done.” And then later they end up with this. It’s because of that same process. So, go cold turkey, take lots of L-glutamine; the amino acid. That’ll help you to deal with the food cravings you’re gonna get for three days. And then you’re done detoxing and then wheat is not food after that anymore.

Stuart Cooke: Perfect tip. Fantastic.

Guy Lawrence: How are we doing for time?

Stuart Cooke: We’re absolutely mindful of your time, so I guess, Guy, if you’ve got. . .

Guy Lawrence: We’ll do a wrap-up question; a question we’re gonna ask on every podcast: If you could offer a single piece of advice for optimum health wellness, what would that be? For everyone listening to this.

Dave Asprey: Learn forgiveness.

Guy Lawrence: Learn forgiveness.

Dave Asprey: Yep. It is a very difficult skill to master. It’s easy to say, “I forgive you.” It’s very hard to actually do the biological activity of forgiveness and to neurologically forgive someone and to really let go. But when you learn to do that, and you practice it, which is how you learn or, better yet, if you do some neurofeedback that teaches you forgiveness, but this kind of thing lets you stop carrying a stress burden for all sorts of stuff that you don’t even know you’re carrying.

So, if you had an invisible backpack full of stones on, you would never know you had it, because it’s invisible to you. And the grudges you hold and the ill will towards others that you hold; it holds you back. It keeps you from performing at the level you can be. And it takes quality of life away from you, but it’s invisible.
So, when you learn how to do this, suddenly you’re, like, “Oh, my God. I’m not carrying whatever that heavy thing was anymore.” And certainly I’ve spent an enormous amount of time working on that myself. And one of the reasons, you were asking: How can I perform like this and still see my kids and do the things I do? It’s because I’ve done a lot of forgiveness work.

So, Bulletproof Diet, yes, Bulletproof coffee, lifesaving, lifechanging, all those things. But at the end of the day, before any of that, practice forgiveness.

Stuart Cooke: That’s perfect.

Guy Lawrence: Perfect answer, mate.

Stuart Cooke: So, Guy, you need to forgive me as I steal half of your MCT oil tomorrow for our experiment.

Dave Asprey: There’s a way to make this forgiveness easier. When he’s not looking, put four times extra in his coffee and see what happens.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah. Exactly.

Dave, thanks so much for your time. If anyone wants to learn more about what you do, where’s the best place for them to go, mate?

Dave Asprey: Check out BulletproofExec.com. All the info on the site’s free. It’s there. A quarter-million words. It’s there as a public service. You know, I’m grateful for all the cool stuff that’s happened in my life and I’d like to help other people do it, too.

Also, I’m hoping to make a trip out to Australia sometime in the next six months or so, so when I know that’s coming together I’ll let you guys know.

Guy Lawrence: Please do. Please do. Fantastic.

Thanks for your time.

Dave Asprey: Have a great day.

Stuart Cooke: Thank you, Dave. Speak to you soon.

 

Lyn Mclean: Is mobile phone radiation dangerous?



2 Minute Taster Above – Full Interview Below

Watch the full interview below or listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.

This was actually a tough episode for me as I’m so reliant on technology. I’m quickly learning the very real concerns and problems that surround us daily which are completely invisible; electromagnetic fields/radiation. Like anything though I find the ostrich head burying approach doesn’t work so well in the long term as someone will come along and kick you up the butt! Investigation and preventative measures are needed.


If you want to jump straight to where we talk about mobile phone radiation and if it’s safe, skip to [010:40]

Ever wondered if using a mobile phone is doing the grey matter between our ears any favours?  What about that fancy bluetooth headset you own or the baby monitor that’s in the cot?

These are just some of the topics we cover in this eye-opening interview with EMR Australia expert Lyn Mclean, and more importantly, the steps we can take to counteract the very real problems with electromagnetic fields and radiation (EMR & EMF). After running this interview, I don’t think I’ll ever look at a mobile phone the same way again! Guy…

If you would like to learn more about EMR Australia, click here.

Further reading: The Force & Wireless-wise kids.

downloaditunesIn this weeks episode:-

  • What is EMF & EMR (electromagnetic field/radiation)
  • Is mobile phone radiation dangerous? [010:40]
  • What are the effects of using mobile phones in the car?
  • Laptops, iPads & wi-fi safety
  • Everything from microwave ovens to baby monitors
  • The preventive steps we can take to EMF/EMR exposure
  • and much more…

You can view all Health Session episodes here.

EMR Australia Transcript

McLean: So, the readings at your place were quite good, Guy, Stuart said.

Guy Lawrence: My readings were fantastic. I did all my sleeping area, the work area, and it was like 1. There was nothing higher than 1 in my house, was there?

Stuart Cooke: No. There was nothing higher than 1.9.

Guy Lawrence: There you go. Hence why I sleep so well at night.

Lyn McLean: Excellent.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, right. Very good.

Right, so I’ve got the book and. . .

Stuart Cooke: Let’s roll with it.

Guy Lawrence: I’ll do it, as always. This is Guy Lawrence and today I’m joined with no other than Mr. Stuart Cooke again. Stu, how are you doing? Good to see you. I wore gray today, by the way, so we’re not matching, which is. . .

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, very well, Guy. Probably your blue one is in the wash, no doubt.

Guy Lawrence: My only one. And we’re joined with Lyn McLean from EMR Australia. Lyn, welcome. Thanks for joining us.

Lyn McLean: Thank you. My pleasure. Thanks for having me.

Guy Lawrence: No worries. Basically, me and Stu ended up having the same colour T-shirt on for the last three recordings, so I’ve gone gray today and it’s worked, which is good.

Just to start, Lyn, for anyone that’s listening to this, can you just tell us a little bit about what you do, who you are and what EMR Australia is as well?

mobile phone radiationLyn McLean: Yes, look, I’ve been involved in EMR now for 17 years. I originally ran the EMR Association of Australia, so that’s how I got involved and was involved, I suppose, or caught up in this issue because I am fascinated by it, but also because there are so many people out there that are having problems with EMR. And it was a very satisfying experience to be able to help them. So, nine years ago, I set up EMR Australia in order that I could continue to do this sort of work in a supported way.

I’ve written three books on electromagnetic radiation and I am a community representative. I have been a community representative on a number of committees; one that developed a code for mobile phone towers and another one to a Department of Health and Australia’s Radiation Authority.

So, I try to represent the community and to keep tabs, I suppose, on what’s going on in the community and to be able to convey that information and hopefully lobby on behalf of people who need help.
Guy Lawrence: OK. All right.

It’s a very real thing. I mean, me and Stu have been quickly learning over the last few weeks, especially when you came and tested our units as well. A lot of people out there are not even aware of what this is. Could you just maybe just explain a little bit about that as well; what we’re actually talking about and dealing with here?

Lyn McLean: Yes, certainly. I think you’re quite right. People don’t know that this is a problem because they can’t see it. But, in fact, we’re surrounded by electromagnetic radiation at home and work.

And there are different kinds of fields. One is the fields from anything electrical, so those are the low-frequency electromagnetic field so they come from things like high-voltage power lines, ordinary power lines, wiring, transformers, conductive pipes. But also any electrical equipment. So, if you’re at work, any equipment that you work on will have an electromagnetic field or any household appliances will have electromagnetic fields.

Now, in some cases, they’re not a worry because the fields are too low to cause people problems. But in some cases, they can be quite high and then we get people who are actually getting sick, and sometimes by reducing those fields, people get better. And often we’re reducing those fields and people get better or feel better.

So, those are the electromagnetic fields. On top of that, we have wireless radiation, which has really just proliferated in the last few years. So, now I’m talking about things like mobile phone towers, TV transmitters, of course, and radio transmitters. But, more commonly, things like mobile phones, cordless phones, wireless modems, even baby monitors and microwave ovens have got this wireless radiation.
So, it’s all around us, and, again, people are getting sick from too much exposure and then when that exposure is reduced they feel better. So, what we try to do is help people, first of all, understand what their exposure is and they need to do what’s necessary and what’s easy, in fact, to reduce it.

Stuart Cooke: Very interesting.

Guy Lawrence: When you say people are getting sick from it, what would some of the symptoms be, because, I mean, we were just discussing it the other week because, you know, I just assumed EMF and EMR were the same things. Also, you know, Stu spoke about his sleep and just by shifting the bed he could sleep. So, that was a symptom and then it’s helped him greatly, I know.
So, when you say, “sickness,” what can some of the symptoms be from that?

Lyn McLean: Yeah, well, the serious problems are things like brain tumors and that’s where a lot of the research has been and there’s a whole science about brain tumors that we can go into. So, that’s one problem.
But other things are things like fertility, because there’s now quite a lot of evidence that shows that mobile phone radiation is affecting the behavior of sperm. And it’s affecting the behavior in ways that’s consistent with infertility. So, it’s quite likely that it’s contributing to infertility in males, particular.

Now, as well as that, there are a whole lot of things that a lot of people wouldn’t call “health problems,” but they’re things that you just feel terrible. If you’ve actually got things like headaches. And I’m talking about not just a little bit of headache but unusual headaches; really intense pressure or people will describe them as weird sort of headaches. Things like depression. Things like sleep problems that we mentioned.

Skin problems is a big one. A lot of computer users have had skin problems. Pain, in some cases. Nausea or gastrointestinal problems. Fatigue is another one. And heart palpitations. They’re actually quite a lot of symptoms and they seem to be symptoms of the nervous system. So, those. . .

Guy Lawrence: What should we do if we’re worried about how much EMR we’re being exposed to at home or perhaps, you know, we have these symptoms, and, you know, we’re slowly joining the dots and thinking, well, you know, perhaps I should do something about this?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. The very first thing I suggest to people is to actually measure, because we’ve found is a lot of people ring up and say: I think I’ve got EMR from, let’s say, it’s the power line out front or it’s the transformer. And then often when you go and measure you see, yes, there is a little bit from that, but the biggest problems is something completely different that they didn’t see or didn’t think about.
So, the very first thing is to measure. And what that does is it actually shows up exactly what you’re exposed to. And I think that’s absolutely critical, because otherwise it’s a bit like going to the doctor and saying, “Look, doctor, I feel sick,” and expecting him to give you a pill that’s going to fix everything. Well, he’s not going to do that because he’s going to want to know what’s causing your sickness so he can give you the right pill. So, in the same way, we want to know what’s causing the fields or the exposure and therefore what’s the appropriate thing to put in place to deal with that.
So, we go out and measure or we hire meters to people and that’s one of them. I don’t know; can you see that one there?
Guy Lawrence: Yep, I can see that.

Lyn McLean: And I know that you had that at both your places. And what that will do; it will measure the fields for anything electrical. So, you can see exactly what you’ve go and that’s gonna help you make a decision about whether it’s too much or it’s OK.

But also you can see where it’s coming from. So, is it coming from the power lines out in the front, in which case, you know, there are some decisions you might make, or is it coming from the water pipe, in which case you’d do something completely different. Or is it coming from some appliance, in which case you could just move it further away from you. It’s trying to reduce your exposure.
So, what you put in place will depend on what you’re actually exposed to.

Guy Lawrence: Got it. Absolutely.

Stuart Cooke: So, when thinking about moving from, kind of, EMF now to more RF and radiation, your thoughts on mobile phones? You know, everyone now is; most people have a mobile phone and they’re certainly not going away. What are your thoughts? Are they safe?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. . .

Sorry; Guy?

Guy Lawrence: I was still; my head’s still thinking about the mobile phone comment you made five minutes ago and I’m just sort of like sitting here. But, sorry, carry on.

Lyn McLean: Are the safe? Well, no one can say that mobile phones are safe. Not our government, not our mobile phone manufacturers. Nobody can say they’re safe. And the reason for that is that there’s actually quite a lot of evidence that they’re not.

Now, I talked about the sperm studies a little while ago and I mentioned the brain tumor studies. But there are number of big research projects around the world that have actually found increased risks. So, I mentioned a name. There was one called the Interphone Study, and that had 13 countries from around the world take part in it and Australia was one of those countries.

And what it found was that for the people who used mobile phones the most, there was an increased risk of glioma brain tumors. Now, if you juggle the results around a little bit; juggle the statistics as the researchers did, they found that there was, for people who were the long-term mobile phone users, there was actually double the risk of gliomas. So, that is a bit of a concern.

And there’s another whole group of studies from Sweden, and what they’re finding is a similar sort of thing: that for long-term users, so I’m really now talking about people who use a mobile phone or a cordless phone for 10 years or more, that they have double the risk of gliomas and acoustic neuromas.

So, that’s a little bit scary, isn’t it? Because keep in mind that a lot of this research was done years ago when people didn’t use mobile phones as much as they do now.
Stuart Cooke: Sure.

Guy Lawrence: Everyone’s got one. I mean, I’m instantly thinking about my phone in my front pocket, like a couple of inches away from my crown jewels, basically. And that’s not; that can’t be a good thing, I’m guessing, then, because. . .

Lyn McLean: Yeah. Well, that’s right. And if you carry your phone on your body, then that radiation is going into your body as you’re carrying it, if it’s turned on.

Guy Lawrence: Because a lot of females will carry it, obviously, in a handbag and things like that and it’s keeping them slightly away from the body. But us guys, I mean. . .

Lyn McLean: Yeah, well, that’s right. But what we have is; and I’ll come back to that in a sec, Guy. But what we have is a lot of women carrying their mobile phones in their bras now, or in a breast pocket, and that’s a real concern because there’s a study in America that’s actually looked at a number of women who carried their mobile phones in their bras and they developed breast tumors. But these tumors are located in the exact position of the areas of their phones. And I’m talking about women in their early ’20s who have had mastectomies. And they didn’t have a genetic background that would predispose them to this. So, you have to ask: Is it the mobile phone?

We even have guys who are developing breast cancer where they carry their mobile phone in their breast pocket. So, yeah, I think it is a big problem. And one of the messages from this is: Keep your mobile phone away from your body. Now, if you have to carry it next to your body, we have a little sock; a radiation sock you can put your phone into and that will stop the signal going through into your body.

Guy Lawrence: So, do you use a mobile phone yourself, Lyn?

Lyn McLean: No. I don’t have one.

Guy Lawrence: Because, you know, it’s a part of my daily life; Stu’s. I’m mean, we run an Internet business and I’m on the phone all the time. I mean, what precautions can we take? You mentioned the sock. Would, like, wearing these headphones and then talking through a mobile phone help?

Lyn McLean: Well, the key thing is to keep the mobile phone away from you when it’s turned on. So, if you’re using it, don’t hold it right up against your head because that’s when radiation is being absorbed into your head. So, even if you hold it out a little bit, or you put one of those socks that I was mentioning. . .

Guy Lawrence: So, I could put it on Speaker and then maybe hold it hear and listen? That’s a lot better?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. Absolutely. Talk on; or, put your mobile phone down on the table and speak so you’re not holding it in your hand. Just anything that you can do to minimize your exposure. So, for example, using a corded landline phone if you can. You know, if you’re making those calls from home, then use that. Spending less time on your mobile phone, ringing people on their home phone or their work phone as opposed to their mobile phone. There are lots of things you can do to reduce that exposure.

Stuart Cooke: What about using a mobile phone in a car. Now, most new cars are equipped with hands-free Bluetooth devices. And, of course, most people yabber away when they’re driving. And it passed the time, for one. What are your thoughts on that?

Lyn McLean: Well, a couple of things are problem with that. One is that there is research now that people who talk on a mobile phone when they’re driving drive just as well as somebody who’s been drink-driving. And that’s not from holding the phone against their head; it’s just from talking on the phone. So, in other words, having the mobile phone and even using speaker function, can still affect people’s driving performance. And, obviously, it makes them worse drivers and increases the risk of accidents. So, that’s one thing.

But in terms of what you’re actually exposing yourself to, people are being exposed to radiation when the phone is operating in the car for a number of reasons. If you’ve got Bluetooth, then Bluetooth is a form of wireless radiation. So, you’re actually exposed to the radiation from that system. And we certainly get people who report that they can’t tolerate to be in cars that have got Bluetooth in them and have to get those systems disabled.

The other thing is, even if you didn’t have Bluetooth in the car and you just have your mobile phone turned on in the car, what the car is; you think of as a metal shell. That’s going to be reflecting that signal, amplifying that signal, passing it all around the car. And that means everybody there is getting exposed.

Now, again, we have people who, if somebody has a mobile phone even turned on in the car. . . So, I’m not talking about making a phone call, now, but just the phone is turned on. They get sick. And I talked to a woman a week or so ago who said her children got into the car and forgot to turn their mobile phones off and she said that was just the end of her. She spent a week in bed as a result of just that one exposure.

Stuart Cooke: Wow.
Guy Lawrence: I mean, is it; are there any preventative measures we can do whilst in the car to be able to use the phone in the car?

Stuart Cooke: Turn your phone off, by the sounds of it.

Guy Lawrence: But, again, it’s something that I certainly do and a lot of people do. Would opening the windows help or anything like that, or is it just something: avoid; don’t do.

Lyn McLean: Yeah, there’s a lot of advice about not using mobile phones in metal shells and things like lifts and cars. So, really, anything you can do to reduce that exposure is a good thing.

Stuart Cooke: What about external aerials, Lyn, for your car? I mean, it’s almost taking us back a few years when mobiles were just; were the next big thing. Lots of cars had external aerials and you used to plug your phone into that. Would that make a difference?

Lyn McLean: Yeah, that’s a good thing to use. But you want to make sure your aerial is not in the position where your children sit or your baby sits.

Stuart Cooke: Right. OK.

Guy Lawrence: You mentioned Bluetooth. Bluetooth headsets. And, I’m assuming, that can’t be good.

Lyn McLean: Well, that’s right. That’s just replacing one form of wireless radiation with another form of wireless radiation, so it’s a; why use that system? There are better systems that you can use. For example, there are headsets, airtube headsets, that don’t have that wireless radiation.

Guy Lawrence: That’s staggering. I’m glad I ride a motorbike a lot. So I don’t have to deal with any of that. But I still keep my phone in my pocket when I’m riding.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, just slip your mobile in your helmet when you ride and I think you’ll be fine.

Guy Lawrence: Some of the helmets, now, well they have Bluetooth in there so you connect your phone and chat away while you’re riding a motorbike.

Stuart Cooke: Well, we know what to get you for Christmas.

Lyn McLean: If he comes to work with a headache, you’ll know why, Stuart.
Stuart Cooke: Well, when he comes to work, I get the headache!

Guy Lawrence: All right. Well, what we said about mobile phones, then, the first thing I think: What about kids? Every kid has mobile phone now. Smartphones, playing games, iPads. What are your thoughts on it? I mean, if it’s that?

Lyn McLean: Well, this is a real concern and there are lots of authorities around the world now who are saying: Reduce kids’ exposure to this radiation. And the advice was, from most of the authorities a few years back, was don’t let children under 16 use a mobile phone. Well, you know, I think that would be really hard to implement now, especially since schools are using them. But that was the advice based on the fact that there a risk for kids.

And there are reasons why kids are more vulnerable, and one is that their skulls are actually thinner. So that means that the radiation is being absorbed into their skull further. So, more of their brain is being affected than adults’ brains. So, remember the studies that have been done that I talked about earlier that were done on adults, and they found increased rates of brain tumors. Now we’re talking about kids who don’t have the protection in their skulls, who are absorbing more radiation, and using them at a younger age. So, what is going to happen to them in 10 years’ time? We don’t know, but in 10 years’ time we’re going to find out. And if; I think all of the people aren’t going to like the answers.

Kids have got a potential lifetime of exposure to us, so, unless us, who were probably mature when we started to use mobile phones, these kids might be using them for not 20, 30, or 40 but maybe 50, 60, 70 years. Now, if there’s a long-term effect of exposure, which the studies are indicating, then what’s going to happen to them in that amount of time?

In fact, people who have been using their phones for 20, 30 years would now be 70 or 80 at that time and it maybe doesn’t matter. But it does if you’re going to only be 40 in 30 years’ time.

Stuart Cooke: Crikey. So, I’m guessing, you know, for all the parents out there that pass on the iPhone for their kids to play the games, Flight Mode, I guess, if you’ve got a smartphone. That would be a precaution. How safe is the phone in Flight Mode? Are we good to go and can happily play with it?

Lyn McLean: In some cases, that’s enough, but in some cases you actually have to turn the wireless because there still can be a signal in Flight Mode. So, yeah, use Flight Mode but turn the wireless off.

But the thing that I’m concerned about is the whole idea of giving kids mobile phones as toys. You’re setting up the expectation in kids that this is something that’s OK to play with.

What I’m saying is that mobile phones; children shouldn’t be using mobile phones, or exposed to mobile phone radiation, unnecessarily. So, if you’re going to see this device as something it’s OK to play with, and Mummy and Daddy says it’s OK for me to play with it, then that’s going to set up that expectation that they can spend a lot of time on it, playing games, as they get older.

Now, that means that, of course, they’re being exposed to more radiation as they do. But it’s also setting up patterns of addiction and you don’t have to look very hard on the Internet to see that there are real problems with young people being addicted to this sort of technology. And there are clinics overseas that are treating people as young as 4 with Internet addiction.
Stuart Cooke: It’s interesting. And, I guess, not to mention, as well, the use of mobile phones affects the way that we communicate and are able to kind of integrate ourselves into communities and conversations, because we’re using to doing it all on the little device.

Guy Lawrence: This just seems such a serious matter, and yet, you know, the media doesn’t seem to cover it much. You hear random studies, but it’s almost made out as if it’s just pulling things out of the sky as if it’s not real, it’s not happening, it’s not there. And it gets swept under the carpet very quickly, really.

Lyn McLean: Well, that’s right. And one of the reasons for that is that the mobile phone industry advertises in the media so much, so for the media to take up this story might threaten a lucrative source of income.

So, in the end, I think it does get back to money. Because look who’s profiting from this. You’ve got the mobile phone companies. The government’s making a fortune from the sale of mobile phones. The media is making a lot of money from promoting this sort of technology. So, there’s a lot of information going out about, “Use me, use me, use me, use me.” And people aren’t necessarily having the balance of information about, well, yes, there is actually a risk. And, as I said, a lot of authorities are warning to be really careful with this technology, especially if they’re kids.

Stuart Cooke: Absolutely. And I guess, even with the manuals that you receive when you buy the mobile phone now, if you actually read the fine print, you will be told to hold the phone away from your ear so that they’re covering themselves, but who does that? We certainly don’t do that.

Lyn McLean: That’s right. That’s right. And because the mobile phones are getting smaller and thinner, the aerials are getting closer to people’s brains, too. So, it’s alarming for me.

Just going back to the question of kids, one of my concerns is that kids don’t have the information to make informed choices. So, I can monitor the Internet or we can find out information about the safety of this technology, but what 3- or 4-year-old or 10- or 12-year-old is going to do that and make a decision about should they be using it and how should they be using it.

For example, I have one Year 11 girl that I know who carries her phone in her bra, as we talked about before, and who didn’t know anything about the risks of that.

Stuart Cooke: No, it’s interesting. Thinking along those lines, you know, the parents the children, well, safety in the kitchen: “Don’t touch the oven; it’s hot. Don’t touch the knifes; they’re sharp.” But, of course, we have these external factors that are potentially much more damaging but we haven’t got any kind of guidelines there as to how to use them safely.

Lyn McLean: Well, that’s right. And that’s where it comes back again, to measuring. Because this is another of the measures that we have. You can see that there.

Stuart Cooke: That’s better; yeah.

A wall is made. So, you can actually hold that near a phone and it will pick up the signal and it will show you how strong the signal is and how far it extends. And I measured the phone that a young boy, he was in Year 7 so he’d be about 12, his phone, the other day, and, boy, it was really; you know, it was unbelievable.

Stuart Cooke: Off the scale.

Lyn McLean: Yeah. That’s right. And you have to be concerned about kids’ holding that. . .
Guy Lawrence: I think the problem is, well, this information is overwhelming. I mean, just sitting here talking to you and listening to the problems with it. You start to think and then you start to think, like you mentioned baby monitors, you mentioned kids; people using the mobile phone. I mean, we have a hard enough time dealing with the food industry and the way that’s going and actually trying to say our piece about it. And, you know, it’s another thing to think about.

Stuart Cooke: What about cordless home phones, then? What are your thoughts on that? I know they’re a convenient product where we can wander around and gasbag any room in the house.

Lyn McLean: That’s right. Well, the bad news is, cordless phones might be even worse than mobile phones. So much of the research that we’ve talked about so far has been done on mobile phones, but the same thing applies, then, more to cordless phones for these reasons. The cordless phone has actually got two elements. There’s the handset and there’s the base. Now, that base, in many cases, is transmitting 24-7. So, people don’t even know that as it’s sitting there beside their bed or on their desk or wherever it might be, it’s still sending out quite a high signal.

So, that’s just the base. In addition to that, they’ve got the handset. So, when you hold the handset of the cordless phone against your head, your brain is absorbing radiation in just the same way that it would be from a mobile phone, but maybe even more because a lot of cordless phones don’t have adaptive power control. So, they don’t power down the signal. In other words, it’s fairly high-power.

Now, we know that a cordless phone is going to be reasonably high-power because it’s going to transmit a signal from over here to right over there, where the base is, on the other side of the house. So, in fact, you’re getting this exposure from both sections and people, in addition, tend to use their home phone more than they do their mobile phone. So, a lot of people have gotten the message that mobiles are a bit dangerous and they’re dealing with that by going home and using their home phone, not realizing that it’s actually radiating just like their mobile phone is. And that they’re being exposed if they do that.

And, in addition to that, if that’s your home phone, then what about when your kids start making phone calls? They’re using a radiating device as a past.

Guy Lawrence: So, can we use corded phones; phones with a cord? Yeah, a corded phone has none of that problem, so it’s a much safer option.
Stuart Cooke: OK, so that was the alternative then. Because, obviously, everyone uses a phone.

Lyn McLean: That’s right. That’s the best thing. And with cordless phones you can be aware of the fact that this thing is giving out radiation, probably 24-7, and where you locate it, because I had a situation once where I went into a home and I measured the radiation coming from a cordless phone, and it was really high. And it was going right through the wall onto the bed, into the bedroom of a young girl; the daughter of the house. So, the mum hadn’t realized that it was actually radiating here as she slept, because it seemed that it was in a different room. But that happens.

Stuart Cooke: I can’t even imagine the strength of these, because we’re corded now. And prior to that, we had a cordless phone. And I remember walking down the street with it trying to test the range, and, you know, I got halfway down the road and still had a strong signal on this phone pressed to my head and thought it was the best thing in the world.

Lyn McLean: Yes. That’s right.

Stuart Cooke: But of course, perhaps, it wasn’t so grateful, but we’ve since learned otherwise and now gone to a corded and feel much happier about that as well.

Lyn McLean: Good on you. Well, I think people have to remember that the word “coverage” and the word “signal strength” really actually meant radiation. So, if the manufacturer is promoting “great coverage” or its fantastic signal strength or whatever it is, then you can interpret that as, oh, well, I’m going to get quite exposed from this technology.

Stuart Cooke: Exactly.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, yeah.

Stuart Cooke: Just going slightly off topic, Lyn, you mentioned the bedroom. I guess the best bet is just to turn everything off, I’m guessing.

Lyn McLean: Yeah. Yeah. And to keep things away from your bed, because if you’ve got this technology on your bedside table at nighttime as lots of people have, then you’re being exposed to it as sleep, and that’s the very time that you want to be least exposed, because it’s as you sleep that you’re bodies. . .

Stuart Cooke: Because I know a lot of mates that will use mobile phone for their alarm clock as well.

Lyn McLean: Yes, yes.

Stuart Cooke: I mean, I still do that but I put it on Airplane Mode, so I’m assuming it’s not searching; not that it’s next to my head or anything. But still. I’m assuming that would be another preventative measure you could take?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. That’s a much better option, and for kids, the advice is to keep the mobile phone out of the bedroom, because we get a lot of situations where children are sleeping with their mobile phone under their pillow, even, so that they can hear the call as it comes in at nighttime or feel the call, and they can respond to it.

So, apart from the fact that they’re irradiating themselves, they’re actually losing sleep and that’s affecting their school performance, and there’s quite a bit now about that side of the problem, too, that it’s affecting kids’ schoolwork.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah. Lots to learn, I think.

So, moving from mobile phones and over onto wifi, now, what are your thoughts on wifi; home wifi networks, which, of course, make it easy and convenient for us to access the Internet with our iPads and laptops everywhere over, you know, in the house. How does that compare to, perhaps, the signals coming into a mobile phone and what should we do about wifi?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. A wifi modem has actually got quite a strong signal. So, if you have your modem next to, say it’s on your desk as you work at your computer, you’re being exposed to a very high signal as you sit there and work. If you’ve got your wifi modem near a bed, maybe on the other side of the wall from them bed, the same thing applies. So, that’s one way that you’re being exposed from the modem.

But then you’re being exposed from the technology that you use as well. So, whether it’s your laptop computer or your iPad that you mentioned, or some other device, that’s actually sending out a microwave signal as well. So, you’re getting a double whammy.

Now, you can measure quite high exposures in a house from this technology. And, in fact, people have got so much technology that you’d be surprised how high the signals can actually be. So, that’s inevitable when you use those systems.

Now, if you want to prevent that, there are a number of things that you can do, and you can go to various extremes depending on how precautionary you want to be. First of all, you can use corded connections. And if you use cords and wires, you’ve got none of that wireless; providing you turn the wireless off, of course. You’re still getting the benefits of the technology. You can still download stuff. You can still play games. But you’re doing it in a much safer way.

Now, if people don’t want to do that, they don’t want to go that far, anything you can do to minimize wireless exposure is really important. So, for example, turning the wifi off when you’re not using it. Maybe downloading, for people who like to watch movies or play games or something like that on the technology, downloading it first and then turning the wireless off as you’re actually using the game or watching the movie.
So, a lot of it comes back to common sense. Just realize that if you’re sitting in front of this thing, and it’s a wifi device that’s using the wifi modem, then you’re being exposed and so are the other people.

Guy Lawrence: So, I’m just thinking, because, I’m in my unit, right? And now I’ve moved my wifi after talking to you a few weeks ago, because that was about a foot from my leg when I was working in the day, and I’ve moved it to the other side of the unit, out of the way. But obviously the wifi is still on during the day. I turn it off at night, or when I go out, I just turn the wifi off; it’s not there. But am I actually moving around in a microwave oven because the wifi is on, or is it not so; does it affect is that much? Even though the router is 10 meters from me?

Because I’ll turn my mobile phone on when I’m in Coogee or in the street and it picks up 20 networks of wifi that are buzzing around. So, obviously, if the phone’s picking up I’m being exposed to it.

Stuart Cooke: You have to create a hat, Guy, out of tinfoil, like a Viking’s hat but tinfoil. And I’ve read that they’re quite effective.

Guy Lawrence: That could work, yeah.

Lyn McLean: Yeah, seriously, I do have people contacting me who have had to go to those extremes like shielding themselves or their homes to stop those signals coming in because they’re so badly affected by it. So, it is a concern.

In terms of the router, the further away from you it is, the less you’re exposed to it. But the fact is that you’re still getting some. And the problem is, well, how much is OK? And that’s the difficulty because we don’t really. . .

Guy Lawrence: We can’t really measure that, can we?

Lyn McLean: We can measure it, yes.

Guy Lawrence: But how much, the limit; how much is OK? How much is not?

Lyn McLean: That’s right. Well, you know, you’d like to think, well, it complies with the standard. That should be OK. But the standard’s actually not protecting people from this sort of use. It’s only protecting against short-term acute heating effects. So, it’s not protecting against long-term, continuous, non-heating effects, which is what we’re talking about. So, for people who are using this technology hours a day, every day, all their lifetime, essentially, it’s not protecting against that.

And there’s a survey done recent that’s showing that people are spending up to 16 hours a day now using this technology. So, that’s a lot of exposure. So, it might be lower-power, but you multiple that by time, if that makes sense. So, it’s a cumulative exposure.

Guy Lawrence: You mention shielding, Lyn. What; can you elaborate on that, please?

Lyn McLean: Yeah. For the high-frequency, the wireless technology that we’re talking about now, if people want to block that signal, what they can do is they can put a shielding paint in place. So, we have a shielding paint. You pat it on the wall and it will block the signal that’s coming through from outside. So, you can actually create a little safe haven if you want to do that.

And, often, people do that only when they’re experiencing symptoms like we have on a lot of people from Victoria who had SmartMeters installed and have experienced all sorts of very unpleasant symptoms. And they very often block the signal. They put it on the side of the house where their meter box is and that stops the signal coming through from the SmartMeter.

Guy Lawrence: From your experience, Lyn, just all these questions keep popping in; sorry.

Lyn McLean: Oh, it’s great.

Guy Lawrence: If a person is healthier, can they withstand the exposure more, as if to somebody that might be already ill; say they’re fighting a disease of some kind. They might be chronically sick. And then they’re exposed to this. Do you think they would be more sensitive to the exposure?

Lyn McLean: I am talking about my experience now and talking about the conversations that I’ve had with people who are dealing with the condition of electromagnetic sensitivity; the researchers around the world who have dealt with that. And, yes, that does seem to be the case. And when you look at the research that is being conducted, the mainstream research, it’s showing that there’s a very big difference in how different organisms respond to EMR. And it would depending on the way that the signal is; whether it goes this way or it goes that way. The genetic background of the animals or the cells that are being exposed. The health or condition of those animals.

So, there are a lot of factors that will affect the way that people respond, and that’s why in a family of, say, four or five people, you might get one person who’s affected badly by this technology and nobody else. It’s a very individual response.

Guy Lawrence: So, what about the wifi in schools? Because I know that gets installed now. I mean, it’s another problem outside of mobile phones. I guess the question has already been answered.

Stuart Cooke: Yeah, schools are very proud, aren’t they, to present this. “You know, we’ve installed wifi all over now and all of our children are happily using wireless tablets now to do their sums.” Surely that would be a concern.

Lyn McLean: This is a concern for a number of reasons. Now, you remember I said that there’s a high field that comes from the router. So, let’s think about where this router might be. You know, maybe it’s by the teacher’s desk or maybe it’s by a particular student’s desk. Maybe it’s working at very high power.

I had one teacher who rang up and said that he couldn’t work with this wifi. He couldn’t have it. He couldn’t be in the classroom where it was. And in this school, it was very high-power because it had to get from one classroom through to another classroom through this cement and concrete floor. So, it had to really have a lot of power to be able to do that. In other words, the signal was strong and the amount of radiation that people were being exposed to was high.

So, you have that. But in addition to that, you have all these kids using this technology, where they are exposed to their technology and the person beside them’s technology and around her.

Now, they are really, basically, just sitting in a little microwave oven. It’s a concern, because we’re experimenting on children. And I don’t know, really, that any ethics committee would allow that, you know? An experiment.

But we’ve got young kids now that are in infant school that are being exposed to this technology when we haven’t even demonstrated that it’s safe for adults. Why would we do this to our kids? Why would we take that risk?

As I said, I’ve got; I mentioned that one teacher. There are actually quite a few teachers who’ve contacted me. Some of them had to give up work because they can’t work in a school with wifi in it. We have a principal who’s resigned because she can’t be in the school because of the wifi.

There are schools overseas pulling out their wifi systems because kids become sick.

It’s a very big risk, I think, and my question is: What happens if this exposure affects kids and they become sick down the track? Will we see litigation against the education departments? And I think that’s a real possibility.

Stuart Cooke: Where standards are concerned, Lyn, how does Australia fare to the likes of Europe, say, for instance?

Lyn McLean: Well, there are international standards that the World Health Organization; our body as connected to the World Health Organization has put in place. And a lot of countries around the world use those standards, and Australia’s standards are pretty much in line with those standards, too. So, they’re very consistent with the majority standards.

In Europe, because there’s been so much concern about the risks of this technology, a lot of countries have put in additional layers of precaution. So, they’ve put in either standards or guidelines or something like that that say, well, we don’t really want people to be exposed to it so much.

And I think that that’s a way of helping to address these concerns.

What I think is really important is that people start to apply these precautions in their own homes and in workplaces. That’s a starting point. You can actually do; if we wait for governments to change status we’ll be very long, I think.

Stuart Cooke: We’ll be around forever.

Guy Lawrence: When you talk about precautions, as well, another question I wanted to cover was the mention of there’s a lot of products out there now that are claiming they can harmonize or neutralize the wifi; the mobile phone. I mean. . . What’s your thought on that?

Lyn McLean: This is a concern, because a lot of people will say: Look, I’ve stuck this on my phone or I’ve that on my phone or I’ve stuck it on my wifi so I’m safe. And, in fact, that’s not necessarily the case at all, because if you measure; if you get a device that measures the radiation, and you measure with one of those stickers or whatever it might be, stuck onto the mobile phone, you take it off and you measure again, the amount of radiation is identical. So, these devices are not making any difference whatsoever to the amount of radiation that we are exposed to.

They don’t even claim to do that. They claim to harmonize. Now, what does that actually mean? We don’t know what that means. It doesn’t; there’s no scientific way that can explain what these devices might be doing. If they’re doing anything, it’s in a way that we can neither understand, nor measure. And that means to me that we’re taking a risk by using them.

It’s much better, in my opinion, to use conventional precautions that can be demonstrated to work; that can be measured to work. Because then you know that you actually are protected and you’re not taking that risk.
Guy Lawrence: Because the problem is, as well, obviously, the education’s not here. I mean, from chatting to you we learn it first and we’re starting to be proactive about it. But the reality is, a lot of people are going to take it: “Oh, I’ll buy a new mobile case for it and that reflects the signal or I’ll stick something on the back or wear something around the neck” and just assuming they’re doing the right thing.

Lyn McLean: Exactly. But if they do that and then continue to use the technology and think, “I’m safe. I’m safe, so I can talk on it for a long amount of time,” then they could be at more risk than if they. . . took no precautions.

[phone rings]

Lyn McLean: Excuse me. I forgot to turn that off.

Stuart Cooke: It’s good to hear the call of a landline. The proof was in the pudding.

I’ve got a question, Lyn, and you touched on it a little earlier: baby monitors. Now, should we be wary of these products? After everything that you’ve told us I think, crikey, that would be the last thing that I want to use now. But how about all our friends out there that are actively using them and feeling safe by doing do?

Lyn McLean: Well, “feeling safe”; isn’t that an irony, because these devices are actually giving out high levels of magnetic fields or wireless radiation are measured; in fact, there are several baby monitors in the cot where the baby slept and the fields were so high that when the mother actually saw it, they picked up the device and took it out and threw it in the bin.

Guy Lawrence: Wow.

Lyn McLean: So, we’re putting these things next to babies whose brains are just newly hatched where they haven’t had a chance to develop, where their skulls are thin, where they’re very, very vulnerable. And we’re exposing them to really high fields.

Now, I’ve to go ask whether that’s really protecting them at all. And, again, we’re talking about long-term cumulative effects.

Now, if I could step back a bit from the baby monitors, there are a couple of studies now that have looked at pregnant women using mobile phones and the scientists have found that if you monitor the behavior and the performance of those kids when they’re 7; that is 7 years after that exposure, these kids have got more behavioral problems or performing worse in schools than kids whose mothers didn’t use a mobile phone.

In other words, it can take a long time for effects to show up. So, if we’re exposing these babies, we might have to wait seven years, eight years, but it could be affecting their academic performance down the track.
Guy Lawrence: Yeah. Interesting thought.

Lyn McLean: And, again, we don’t know but it’s question of precaution. How much risk do you want to. . .

Stuart Cooke: I think that’s just it. We just don’t know, do we? A little bit like the cigarette industry in the early days. We didn’t know, you know. Cigarettes were even claimed to have health benefits.

Lyn McLean: Absolutely. That’s right. Yeah. And there’s a story that Sir Richard Doll, who’s the guy who made the connection between smoking and lung cancer, and the Health Department actually told him not to let his results out to the general public because that might cause alarm. That was back in the ’50s.

Stuart Cooke: Wow. I can just picture the packaging, then, in 20 years’ time, on my new mobile phone that I buy. Crikey. With these horrible pictures on the side.

Lyn McLean: Well, yep, we don’t know, do we?

Guy Lawrence: No, we don’t.

Lyn McLean: And I think it all boils down to how much risk do you want to take? Now, this is a question of society and we’re grappling with it every day as parents make choices about what sort of food to feed their children or whether to put a fence around their pool or, you know, to strap their child in a car seat or use seatbelts. All the time, we’re making decisions about precaution and safety, and this is just something else that we need to address. But people have to be aware that it’s critical.

Guy Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely.

Stuart Cooke: Well, I think they do. And I think you can; you don’t have to scared by this. I mean, after speaking to you, as a family, we have made certain changes, and they’re by no means radical. I mean, we tested our apartment. We moved our positioning of beds. We went to corded phone. I use a plug-in, wired Internet now. So, our wifi is gone. And I use my speakers at all times on my mobile phone. And, while carrying it, I bought a little shield. So, if I have to slide it in my pocket, I’ve got this going now. And I feel like I’m doing, you know, to the best of my abilities to try and stay on top of this.

So it’s, you know, by no means kind of radical stuff, but just small changes.

Lyn McLean: Well, that’s quite right and sometimes it’s just a question of moving something from here to there. And I mentioned a story to you before where we had a woman who had depression and sleep apnea and she was on medication for those, and her husband had problems with depression, too. And she heard me speaking about the meter box having high electromagnetic fields, and she decided that she’d do a little experiment. She moved the bed from right beside the meter box up the wall a little bit; just a little bit further away. And she found that her depression cleared up, her sleep apnea cleared up, her husband’s depression cleared up, and they didn’t need medication anymore.

So, it didn’t cost her anything to do that and rang me up after about three weeks because she wanted to make sure that the changes lasted, and they did.

Stuart Cooke: It’s small things, isn’t it?

Lyn McLean: Exactly.

Stuart Cooke: I guess it’s just being aware. I found a high magnetic field on the floor where I previously slept from a light fitting to the foyer of a block of units downstairs. And that was, you know, very high. But a meter to the left or right of that, those levels dropped significantly, and I sleep better now.

Lyn McLean: So, you moved your bed in order to. . .

Stuart Cooke: I just moved my bed. Yep. Moved it to the other side of the wall, and that’s all I did. And it’s made a world of difference. But it’s just knowing.

Guy Lawrence: I’ve got one last question for you, Lyn, before we wrap up. Microwave ovens. Somebody mentioned them on Facebook the other day as well. I haven’t used one since I immigrated, like, seven years ago. But what are your thoughts on them?

Lyn McLean: Well, microwaves are really interesting because they’ve got a number of problems that, first of all, they change the chemical composition of food. But leaving that aside, because that’s not to do with radiation, they have several fields. They have a high magnetic field that’s just because they’re an electrical appliance. So, if you have your microwave oven sitting on the bench and not doing anything, not cooking any food, the chances are it’s giving out a high magnetic field and you can measure that.

But when you put the food in it and you turn it on, it starts to cook, the magnetic field generally goes very. So, in fact, you would want to keep quite a distance away from it when it’s cooking, just to be out of that magnetic field.

In addition to that, it’s also got the microwaves that cook the food. Now, microwave ovens are allowed to legally leak a little bit of microwave radiation, and in some it’s a little bit more than others, depending on how secure the door seals are. So, you can measure the microwave radiation from these as well. Sometimes, as it’s starting to escape, it can be quite high in even the room adjacent to the microwave.

Guy Lawrence: See, you wouldn’t want to be leaning over, staring through the glass to see if your milk’s gonna boil.

Lyn McLean: Absolutely. Absolutely. So, you definitely want to keep a distance from them, but I would say check them, too. Measure to see whether you’ve got any microwave leakage or too much microwave leakage.

Stuart Cooke: Crikey.

Guy Lawrence: There you go. I’ve never liked those things anyway. I’m all for that one.

Stuart Cooke: It sounds like you’re living in a microwave oven with a wifi network. I’ll surely not be visiting anytime soon.

Guy Lawrence: It’s just to keep you out, mate.

Stuart Cooke: Well, it’s working.

Guy Lawrence: Lyn, thanks very much for joining us today. It’s been awesome. My God, I’m going to have to take stock of all this information myself.

If anyone wants to learn more, EMR Australia, the website, would be the best place to contact for you?

Lyn McLean: Yep. Certainly.

Guy Lawrence: And then, obviously, you can provide all the necessary information if they’ve got more questions and things like that.

Stuart Cooke: And also, Guy, not to forget the book as well; Lyn’s fantastic book called The Force, which I’ve read and I think I’m gonna read it again. It just really does kind of just enforce all these little pockets of knowledge that I think are so empowering. So, if people wanted to purchase the book, Lyn, whereabouts could they do that?

Lyn McLean: They could do that through our website. Can I just share, also, excuse me as I lean over, that what we do with the kids, because having talking about the risks of this radiation for kids: Wireless-wise Kids, which is actually, and if you can see it there; I think we’re getting a bit of reflection from the blinds, but it’s got beautiful illustrations by an Australian artist, Janet Selby, and it’s quite easy to understand. So, kids can understand, but also the parents get a lot.

Stuart Cooke: I’ve purchased a copy of that as well and we went over that as a family, so we’ll put that information on the website for the viewers, too.

Guy Lawrence: Absolutely. Fantastic.

Thank you for your time, Lyn. That was mind-blowing.

Lyn McLean: Thank you very much. I appreciate you talking to me about this issue. I think it’s a really important one and I’m glad you’ve given us the chance to speak.

Guy Lawrence: We do, too. Thank you again.

Lyn McLean: Thank you. It’s my pleasure. Have a lovely day.

Guy Lawrence: Cheers. Thank you.

Stuart Cooke: Goodbye.