Liz Talks Podcast, Episode 26: Talking Ray Peat, prometabolic eating, sugar, vitamin D and more with Danny Roddy!

Danny Roddy, early adopter of Ray Peat’s ideas and author of Hair Like A Fox, stops by to talk about Dr. Peat, lifestyle and nutritional support for metabolism and energy (now often called “prometabolic” eating), sugar, nutrition myths, stress, vitamin D and more!

TRANSCRIPT

Liz Talks Episode 26

  • Introducing our guest, Danny Roddy [6:07]
  • Danny’s move to Mexico [12:51]
  • Nutrition is location based [18:51]
  • Who is Danny Roddy? [30:11]
  • A bioenergetic view of health [38:04]
  • Buffering stress [43:19]
  •  PUFAs [57:01]
  • Vitamin D supplementation [1:08:54]
  • On the Back of a Tiger [1:18:00]

Welcome to Liz Talks. I’m Liz, and I’m a nutritional therapy practitioner and best-selling author; but here, I’m 0% professional and 100% mom, spouse, friend, and over-analyzer. We’re going to talk food, beauty, family, fitness, mental health, friendship, marriage, and everything in between in this season of Liz Talks, and I’m so glad you’re along for the ride.

Remember; this is a podcast about thoughts, feelings, and opinions. And I definitely do not give individual, personal, or medical advice. 

This is episode 26, topic: Liz talks to Danny Roddy about Ray Peat; metabolism and energy; nutrition myths; sugar, vitamin D, and more.

In case you missed it, last weeks’ episode 25 was about breastfeeding, body changes, and a question about pro-metabolic eating. 

Before I begin, I want to quickly thank Arrowhead Mills for their generous sponsorship of this podcast. Next time you go to the store, I’d love to have you support a company that supports my work and look for Arrowhead Mills products. You can also find them on Vitacost.com. I appreciate Arrowhead Mills because they’re not only organic and non-GMO, and focused on sustainable agriculture because it’s cool NOW; they were actually founded more than 60 years ago on those principles. So they have walked the walk for decades. 

Welcome to the podcast, my friends. No updates from me personally this week, because I’m about to intro a long podcast interview that I did with Danny Roddy, who is an independent researcher, author, thinker, podcaster, and ponderer of the work of Ray Peat and other scientists of the old school. By which I mean; scientists who are also dedicated to the art of science; to the act of pondering and dismantling. Is that sufficiently vague? 

Danny has been, in my view, the primary gatherer, discusser, and disseminator of Ray Peat’s work for many years. And Ray Peat being, I think, really the foundation of a lot of the pro-metabolic discussion that’s going on in the mainstream conversation and on social media now. And without Danny, I would have never come across it. So he’s doing such a service to all of us in that way. And by, “I would never have come across it”, I mean it as in Ray Peat’s work. So again, he’s doing a huge service there.

I talked about this interview in last weeks’ podcast when I answered a question about pro-metabolic eating. So if you haven’t listened to that yet, please do so for some background as to why we’re talking about these things now. As I said last week, I’m ashamed to say, I’m sorry, I’m not clued into what the pro-metabolic community is talking about now and how closely it aligns with what Danny and I talked about today, as I think that label might be somewhat new relative to the overall discussion. Particularly online. And awareness around Ray Peat’s ideas. But hearing that term, and learning that it has seen such growth recently has really inspired me to dust off my Peat books and newsletters again.

It also helped me muster up the courage to reach out to Danny, who I’ve been following for years, and finally ask for an interview. And wouldn’t you know it; he was extremely gracious and willing and gave so much of his time to what was probably a very low level discussion compared to what he’s brought to light in the course of his work. 

So one of the things I love about Danny, and in particular his podcast, is that everything is on the table. The discussions are beyond wide ranging. And many of them, to be quite honest, especially of the last few years, are uncomfortable. But the exercise of listening to intelligent people turn over just really important topics is important, in my opinion, in and of itself. So while you’ll find Danny’s work around Pete really compelling, and we focus on that almost exclusively today. Nutrition, the ideas of Ray Peat, some of the sacred cows of, say, paleo and low carb nutrition. We try and slay those a little bit. 

But he has also talked about many, many more things. Especially in his podcast with Georgi Dinkov, that I think would probably stir some discomfort in many of us. And he alluded to that in the podcast, if anyone is a little bit confused. 

So especially today, I think some of the more difficult, ugly, controversial conversations don’t feel safe to people. But I personally, and I’m not saying this has to be you. But I personally enjoy the widest range of dialogue possible. It actually makes me feel safer, feeling like I have listened to everything I can possibly listen to, turned over every stone, and all of that. Maybe that’s a function of my personality type, but I’m very willing to be offended and to explore and to try on an argument. 

So for those of you who do want to dig into this sort of mental exercise, I highly recommend starting at the beginning of the Generative Energy podcast and working your way forward. And of course; again, that’s not the whole of Danny’s work as an individual. He’s also on Patreon, Substack, YouTube, and Instagram. And here on the Liz Talks podcast today! 

This is a long interview. And rather than breaking it up into two episodes, I’m keeping it long. Because I actually really prefer long form podcasts where you can really dig into a topic like this. I’d love to do more of these in the future, so please let me know what you all think of it and whether you enjoy this kind of discussion, rather than the shorter, 30 to 45-minute ones. Which is what I promised you when I started this podcast, that it would be sort of a carpool line podcast. But I’m also finding that to be very difficult in practice. I guess I am who I am. So, sorry folks, for the false advertising. But I do hope I’m bringing you some value through the course of this podcast.

So, let’s launch into the interview. Three, two, one.

  • Introducing our guest, Danny Roddy [6:07]

Liz Wolfe: Hey Danny, can you hear me? 

Danny Roddy: Hey, how are you? {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: I’m good, how are you? {laughs} Welcome to my studio. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, that’s a brilliant studio. Now you’ve entered the black void with me, so same. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: That’s fancy. Did you order some fancy stuff there? 

Danny Roddy: No; I’m sure we’ll talk about it, but I’m in the middle of a dining room. So here you can see, these are just big soundproofing blankets.

Liz Wolfe: Oooh.

Danny Roddy: They actually make life really easy. 

Liz Wolfe: That’s smart. 

Danny Roddy: I attach them to rolling; like professional rolling things for big lights. So I can just roll them around and move them to the corner when I don’t need them. I mean, I don’t know how I became a podcaster person. I have no business speaking about anything. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: I feel the exact same way. At all times. It’s been like 10 years, and I have the exact same imposter syndrome I have always had. And it’s compounded, every time I’m wrong about something.

Danny Roddy: Yeah; I mean, you’re speaking my inner monologue. I think that’s; I really do think it’s kind of useful to feel like that. As uncomfortable as it is sometimes, because having a lot of confidence in the health world almost always makes a person, at some point, look really stupid. 

Liz Wolfe: Yes! 

Danny Roddy: So I can’t; even Ray, who is like 50 years older than I am, and actually worked in academia and has been championing these ideas for decades, is an extremely humble person. He’s super validating. Like, you have some idea that you think is like a pet idea of yours or something, and he’ll validate it. He won’t shoot it down. He’s like such a flexible thinker that he could; there’s that Aristotle quote, “The mark of an educated person is to hold an idea without accepting it.” Ray is like a really great example of that.

Liz Wolfe: That’s kind of analogous to the willful suspension of disbelief. Where you’re just like; alright. Ok. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} Yeah.

Liz Wolfe: Why not think about this? And I use that word a couple of times, I think, in the document where just like; I feel like you and Ray and just all of these thinkers. I just value the thinkers, not the reactors. And I want to be more like that.

Danny Roddy: I mean; that does not sell in the health world. The certainty. You know; if I was forced to talk about football right now, I would be making all of these errors talking about the rules, and like a touchdown, and the nature of football. And it’s funny because you can see that in the health world. These people that are like; oh, I’m the expert on this subject or that subject. You can detect so many different errors in the way they talk about it. They clearly don’t read that much about it. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: So; I don’t know. I think maybe that just comes from experience. And I was going to say; I’ve been hearing your name for like such a long time. You’ve been in this space for a while. 

Liz Wolfe: I have. And I think I’ve kind of been able to fly under the radar as far as the more aggressive hatred {laughs} of people. So that is very validating to me. But I’ve certainly made some mistakes. And that’s the thing about a book. Like I said; I love writing, but I’ve said so many times; I don’t think I ever want to write a book again. Because you can’t update it. You can’t change it. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. I was working on a second book, and I basically just shelved it. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: Because it’s so much; I’m not a good writer. It’s like painful for me to write anything.

Liz Wolfe: No, you are a good writer. I’ve read a lot of what you’ve written. I mean, you’re a great podcaster, but you’re a good writer.

Danny Roddy: I appreciate it. But I guess the only thing I’m ever happy with that I write is something that needs to get out of me immediately. For example; the vitamin D stuff. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: That was; I was like. Ok, I’m done hearing these things. I’ve been hearing these for months over and over and over again, and it’s time to do something about it. You know; tackle their arguments. And so that was pretty effortless to get my thoughts onto a medium, you know? 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: But if it was like; you have to write something every week. Or write something every two weeks. That would be a brutal process and it would probably end up being complete garbage. But yeah, the podcasting. So my big problem was making content regularly. Because I filmed a whole video, and just deleted it. Because I was like; oh, I didn’t say it the way I wanted.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: But podcasting; especially live streaming, solved a huge issue for me. Because you do it, and then there’s no editing. It’s just done. So, I would always be a tinkerer. I’d be like; oh, this could be better. Or we could edit these “ums” out. 

Liz Wolfe: Yes! 

Danny Roddy: And you can’t do that with a live stream.

Liz Wolfe: That; oh my gosh. That’s exactly where. I have to be so vigilant of; this is not a good use of my time. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} Yeah. 

Liz Wolfe: You don’t need to clip out every “um”. So it’s not a good use of my time. And you’re right; the live thing is so valuable. Because you have to snap to. 

Danny Roddy: But that’s a natural thing. So, Generative Energy was the live stream. And that started maybe in late 2018 early 2019. We did episodes that are not on YouTube for a while. So Georgi and I were just talking, and it obviously felt like something good. But we did a podcast before that. And we had like 30 episodes of it. And those, Georgi and I would talk; we’d record them, and then I’d spend about two weeks. Or an intense week editing it. 

So, again, I was the same as you. I had to write down every single thing I could possibly think of. I don’t know; I didn’t tell myself to mentally change how I did them. I think; I don’t know. As I fixed certain aspects about my health and stuff. I’d always get really nervous for those things. I’d get debilitatingly nervous for them. {laughs} So that was one of my big life challenges. It’s ironic because I was a podcaster that couldn’t speak. Or I’d get so nervous I couldn’t talk, doing the podcast. 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: So that’s not necessarily a valuable trait. And live stream was even scarier for me. But it was kind of like; if you never test yourself with anything, how do you know how your stress response is? And for me, it was always doing the live streams. It was like; ok, are you good or are you not good? 

Sometimes my inclination would be to cancel them, because I was so ridiculously nervous, and I thought it would be such a poor performance on my part.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: But anyways. You barrel through that. You become better {laughs}. And they’re not the craziest; they’re not the same level of stress they were before.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. It’s exposure therapy. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, exactly. {laughs} 

  • Danny’s move to Mexico [12:51]

Liz Wolfe: That’s what I think. Well, I’ll just start talking then, because I think we’ve got a good thing going. But I do want to talk about; you were talking earlier about we might talk about this. But I’m curious about your move to Mexico. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. So in 2016; I was in San Francisco. And I think I sensed the instability of everybody. And you know, I like politics. I could talk to you about; I have friends that lean every which way, you know. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah, same.

Danny Roddy: I’m more interested in why people think something than imposing my point of view on them, or saying they’re wrong about it, you know? And I’ve always been like that. Like a contrarian. So when we would have dinners in San Francisco, people would be talking about something and be like; well, I know Danny doesn’t agree about this. 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: So let’s bounce it over to him. So that was my nature. And then over time, as the election ramped up, and my friends seemed to think the stakes of humanity were also increasing, I think my contrariness was less and less welcomed. There were many people storming out and slamming doors when I would be asking questions about stuff. So I was like; I don’t really value just appeasing everybody with my point of view. I value self-growth and stuff. And then Ray was always speaking so highly about Mexico. 

And I was critical of the US; and I was like, why don’t you put your money where your mouth is and move out of the US? Also at the time, I still don’t, but I didn’t really make that much money. And I didn’t aspire to make more money. So I was like; Mexico would be more in line with your income. So too many things made sense not to do it. So I booked a plane ticket, and came to a place called Guanajuato; or San Miguel de Allende. It’s a very popular ex-pat place. And I knew that grandmas and grandpas lived here. So I was like; it can’t be that dangerous. 

Liz Wolfe: {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: If grandmas and grandpas are retiring there. And it was like sketchy for one day; I was like, what the hell are you doing? This was a huge mistake. And then I found a grocery store called Avia Organica. And the moment I walked in; it was kind of like a mini Whole Foods. And the moment I walked in, I was like; you made the right decision. We’ll be fine here. 

And it was probably the best decision I ever made. I feel really fortunate to have jumped and the net just kind of magically appeared. My Spanish still sucks really bad, but I’m learning a little bit. One word every day. {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} That was going to be my next question. And my next question after that was; have you met a lot of grannies and grandpas that are taking care of you out there? 

Danny Roddy: {laughing} Yes, I have. Yeah, I have met many grannies and grandpas. Yeah, it’s like exposing yourself to different cultures. Mexico isn’t the only place I went after 2016. I spent time just around the world in general. And again, maybe we’re jumping ahead here. But you realize how access to different things changes everywhere you go. 

For example; I went to the Philippines, and they don’t have milk basically anywhere. And they only have that UHT; ultra high temperature milk.

Liz Wolfe: Oh, ok.

Danny Roddy: So I survived on that for like two months or so. Like, if I was a super food purist, I would have melted there. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: That’s not even available even if you wanted it to be. And the people I talk with every day; it’s like an international audience of people all over the world. I already was not a puritanical food person at that time, but it shook it out of me even more so. Because you realize; for example, Japan has no fruit whatsoever.

Liz Wolfe: Really? 

Danny Roddy: At least in Tokyo or Osaka. Or, if you want to buy it, it’s extremely expensive, it’s wrapped up in plastic like a boutique type of thing. But I guess just everything is different all over the world, and you have to be; if somebody is like; I want to improve my health, and you’re like; you have to go buy raw milk. You know; and they’re like; I don’t even know where to do that {laughs}. Or, it’s like 4 hours away from me or something. You have to have options of what to. 

So I guess what I’m trying to say is traveling made that very clear, that everybody is in a different situation. And also, my own nutrition changed from place to place that I went. For better and for worse. So it was a huge learning experience. I’m glad I got the chance to travel, because I’ll probably never travel again. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah, it feels a little different now than it felt four or five years ago.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Even in the United States. We spend a lot of time in Florida; and my friend Arsy does, too. Who I know you know Arsy. But Arsy and I were talking about; we think that Florida is intentionally putting out these Florida man stories so people are like; oh, Florida is full of crazy people. I can’t go down there. Because it’s such paradise in so many ways. I love Florida. But also, politically, it’s so different even from where I live in Kansas; from San Francisco. It’s very interesting. 

  • Nutrition is location based [18:51]

Liz Wolfe: And I want to also home in on something that you just said about dietary choices being kind of location dependent. I had this for later in our list of stuff to talk about; but one of the things I’m very curious about, not being super familiar with how this conversation around Peating and all of this stuff is evolving; this idea that it’s going to go the same way paleo went, which is like; here’s the list of approved foods. This is Peat, this isn’t Peat. This is what you have to eat, and this is what you can’t eat. And that it’s going to evolve that way. And I don’t know if it is or if it isn’t. If whoever is talking about it is doing a great job with, things like that. Recognizing the context around what you’re eating, where you are. 

And even Ray, I feel like; I never felt like, in reading all of his books. Well, not all of them. I don’t have all of them. But in reading Peat and listening to you guys, that I was required to do something or not do something, or I wasn’t doing it properly. Do you have any thoughts on that? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, yeah, yeah. We could go a bunch of different directions. So the guy is about anti-authoritarian as it gets. 

Liz Wolfe: Right.

Danny Roddy: He has this quote saying, “If somebody is talking about my protocol for something, you know they’ve misinterpreted everything I’ve ever said.”

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: And a protocol is personal and empirical and it depends on the nature of the person’s history and their circumstances and things. He always quotes this Jose Gasset quote; like “I am myself plus my circumstances.” So your circumstances; what happened to you when you were born. What happened in-utero. What happened in your early adult life? Like, everything, you know? 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: So the paleo stuff, to me, was, again, a launching pad. I don’t regret doing it. It was integral for my learning and things. It just seemed like the idea was way too vague. Like; oh, if we just match our ancestors, we’ll be… Or we; I know, they’ll always say we don’t want to mimic. If we just emulate the foods they ate, or we eat whole foods or something. There is some variation of that as every paleo person says.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: And then that will generate health. And that just, to me, at this point seems way too vague. Because in my own experience, I did that and I was really unsatisfied with my health. So does just eating the most nutritious; if you had a perfect paleo diet of the most nutritious foods available, would that sustain a person’s health in 2022? With these advents of new technology, and new types of stresses that we’ve never been exposed to in our entire life. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: The culture is the most toxic thing you could possibly imagine. Just engaging with it chronically will make you sick. So does paleo, or whatever version a person subscribes to, whether it’s carnivore or Robb Wolf type of paleo, whatever. Is that enough to sustain a person’s health? And then what is health? {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: What makes a person healthy? What makes a person unhealthy? And I felt like, not on purpose. but I just felt like those questions were never broached in a thorough way. So when I bumped into Ray’s stuff; I think he was trying to answer the big questions like; I think paleo, if all these health philosophies are paintings, the paleo stuff is a small painting with a limited amount of colors. And Ray, to me, is painting; what’s that painting on top of the Vatican? This is like amazing. 

Liz Wolfe: Oh my gosh; yeah. Yeah.

Danny Roddy: Things like that.

Liz Wolfe: Why don’t I know what that painting is? 

Danny Roddy: I’m blanking. I don’t know what it’s called. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Very cultured. Very cultured. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, two very cultured people. But, that doesn’t mean everybody comes to the Ray Peat stuff in the same kind of high level point of view. Ray’s gotten way more popular over the last 5 years or so. And I am especially guilty of it. I was like; if people just eat the right Ray Peat foods, everybody will be fine. If they’d just listen to Ray more, they’d be ok. You know? And it was my evolution of realizing that was completely untrue. And I had friends; for example, my friend Karen, who I interviewed on the podcast maybe three times. She was always 10 steps ahead of my philosophically. And she was like; Danny. Health is not about just eating some perfect diet. And I was like; yes it is. {laughs} You know. 

Liz Wolfe: Uh-huh! {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: And so, I guess you learn that over time that it’s not about; again. I’m jumping ahead here. But if aging and stress and disease is a manifestation of accumulation of stress over a period of time. Eating a good diet might mitigate those stresses, or it might now. You know? So I think that’s why Ray’s interest in the metabolic rate as represented by the pulse and temperature is so interesting. Because it’s not really about nutrition, per se. And again; I’m pretty fanatical about my own nutrition. But it’s not about that, per se. 

Like, increasing the metabolic rate can take many shapes and forms. For example, going out at 2 or 3 p.m. and laying out in the sun. I’m using air quotes for listeners; like a pro-metabolic activity. Or doing something you really like; like for me, watering the plants, or putting the compost, can be a fun exciting activity that can stimulate the metabolism. Or talking to Liz could be a stimulating, metabolic activity. 

And again, there are other things. There are nutrition things like eating calcium, or eating sugar from ripe fruits and things or keeping the intestine in good shape. But it’s so limiting to, say, if a person only ate these things, they would be good. When life is so much more dynamic and vast and the stresses we experience are multifaceted and to different degrees and intensities. 

And the thing I didn’t say; taking thyroid is another type of pro-metabolic therapy, with a long safety historical record of using it for that purpose. 

So, to sum it all up. Ray has a quote, and it’s like; somebody is asking him why they’re not losing weight or something. And Ray is like; my main suggestion is to increase the metabolic rate. Not necessarily any specific foods. And there are lots of different ways to do it. 

So I know that might be a little bit vexing to anybody that’s coming from a diet centered philosophy. But it’s a little bit more nuanced. And like anything worth learning about, I think it takes some time to assimilate it. 

Liz Wolfe: Well I think over the last maybe 5 years. I don’t know. I feel like after I turned 35; 30. I don’t know where we’re at in the span of time. But I feel like in the 5 to 10 years, we’ll just say; and I’ve been in kind of this paleo/Weston Price/Primal world. Real food; whatever. I can’t change my handle because I got the blue checkmark, so I’m stuck there. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: But this world has kind of shifted to maybe be a little bit more accepting of this idea of nuance, and talking about stress being such an important thing. I don’t know; people talk about it but I don’t know if they really, really believe it. They’re like; I’m under stress. It could be affecting me. But whether or not that actually translates into action, I’m not sure. Just kind of on a broad scale. But there is that acceptance of nuance, and everyone is different, everyone’s trauma is different. Trauma; I dislike that word. 

But it’s in there. People are talking about it. It’s percolating. And that’s good. But at the same time, you still people just banging their heads against the wall with what they’re putting in their body food-wise. So it’s like; I was always laser focused on nutrients. And that was a big part of my book. Where are the nutrients? Let’s really talk about where they are, and why we should eat liver. Or why we should eat weird foods to get them. And I thought that was a really good approach. I still think it’s solid.

But then you also have people that end up saying; well, I need to be more restrictive. I can’t eat kale anymore. Who wants to eat kale in the first place? But you know what I mean.

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: People going on the autoimmune protocol who don’t need to be on the autoimmune protocol. Or people who are going carnivore just to get; they really believe that the more extreme they get, the more change they’re going to see. Whatever that change might be. Whereas during that same period of time, I feel like I kind of floated away. Maybe I was just kind of drifting; like, oh. This is weird. And I ended up just kind of doing whatever I wanted to do. I had encountered the Weston Price stuff, so I really valued local foods. Raw milk, all that type of stuff. I like the idea of just eating whole food from nature as often as possible. But as I was kind of doing that thing; eating my bread if I wanted to, having my donuts if I wanted to, and hopefully encouraging people to do the same, I also feel like I started picking up these ideas from Peat. 

Which was; the way I kind of outlined them in my head was this idea of creating a buffer against stress. So nutritionally, we can do that. And then we can kind of take the metabolic tracking; body temperature, metabolic rate, as kind of a litmus test for how you’re doing. But at the same time, I’ve never obsessively tracked any of that. Because in general, I feel pretty good. And I think that’s kind of the goal. And if you would have asked me 10 years ago, I would have been like; no, you can’t feel good unless you’re going to do paleo. You can’t feel good if you’re going to eat a donut. That’s not how it works. You know? 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} Yeah. If somebody was like; hey, I feel really good, what should I do? I’d say nothing. You know? 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: Keep doing what you’re doing. I wouldn’t say anything. I think maybe the people that are attracted to me are the people that have had devastating health problems over a long period of time. Or feel like they’ve explored veganism, or paleo, or carnivore. And maybe achieved some levels of success on those things, but didn’t get their health to where they wanted. You know? And so again, like you mentioned. The temperature and pulse. Those are ways; stress can be this ethereal, ambiguous concept. Or it can be grounded pretty easily by taking your pulse and your temperature. Your underarm temperature.

For example, in my story, going vegan at some point left me freezing cold. I mean, it would be 80 degrees in California and my hands and feet would be like blue, I’d be so freezing cold. And then going carnivore, the first year was relatively ok. And then the second year I was also, again, freezing cold. So I was like; that’s weird. Carnivore left you freezing cold, and veganism left you freezing cold. And by far, this is one of the worst symptoms I’ve ever experienced in my entire life. Feeling cold; do you want to do a creative activity when you’re freezing cold? Or do you feel like getting intimate with a lover. {laughs} Do you feel like doing anything when you’re freezing cold? It’s a primal, terrible feeling to try to get over. 

So that’s what triggered my brain with Ray. Because he was like; that is a basic feature of low thyroid, i.e. higher accumulation of stress over a lifetime. And then for good health, you probably want to get the pulse and temperature up. And another way of saying that, is mimic the metabolism of a young child. And I don’t know how many healthy kids there are these days. But maybe in the 1950s or something, mimicking the metabolism of a 10-year-old or something. And if you take their temperature and pulse, they have a 90 pulse rate just resting, and their underarm temperature is going to be 98.6 or 99. 

So that’s really the idea here is to try to emulate the metabolism of a young child. And their whole MO is they are resistant to stress. And then as you adultify; like I’m 36. So as you get older, your body becomes more susceptible to breaking down under the stresses were exposed to. 

And that’s the other thing; the stresses are getting worse, not better. Just in the last 2 years, our environment has deteriorated to who could have even thought an insane degree. And I anticipate that getting even worse in the next 8 years or so. So we’re all surviving. 

Ray has a quote, I think, in his mind and tissue book that organisms don’t end at their skin. The environment we live in is part of our organism. So you can only be as good as your environment is. And our environment sucks really bad. {laughs} 

  • Who is Danny Roddy? [30:11]

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Well. No argument there. Ok, so let’s do this. Let’s do your origin story. Let’s do who is Navin Johnson. Like; let’s learn who is Danny Roddy. And I’ll tell you how I found you, a long, long time ago listening to Chris Kresser’s podcast. Because you used to cohost it, way back in the day. 

Danny Roddy: That’s a deep cut. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Oh, sorry.

Danny Roddy: No, no, no. Deep cut; like, a hold historical memory.

Liz Wolfe: Got it, got it. Ok. Not painful. I’m not bringing up stored trauma for you right now.

Danny Roddy: No, no. Not at all.

Liz Wolfe: OK. Ok good. I mean I remember everything about it. I remember where I was. This was when I was listening to all of the five podcasts that were available for the paleo curious. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: It was The Paleo Solution, Kresser’s podcast; maybe one or two others. And it wasn’t too long before I started; or Diane Sanfilippo started one and I was her co-host. Her sidekick. But I remember you bringing up the Ray Peat stuff with Chris. And not in a mean way, not in an evil way, but I remember him sort of dismissing it. I don’t know if it was the orange juice thing, or what it was. But I remember being like; you said earlier that you were a contrarian. I am too. I’m kind of an introverted contrarian. {laughs} Not outwardly contrarian. But any time; there’s a quote that’s like; any time people agree with me I always think I must be wrong. So that’s kind of, in my head at all times. 

Danny Roddy: {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: So, Chris was kind of like; no, that doesn’t really make any sense to me. And I was like; oh, I’ve got to hear more about this. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: So I continued listening, and then you moved on to other things. And ever since that point, I kind of was following you around like a super creeper, just kind of like; what’s Danny doing now? You know. What’s the Peat stuff; what’s going on there. I subscribed to Peat’s newsletter. Like, I sent him a check, and was like; I don’t know if I’m going to get anything in the mail back from this, but I’m going to send the man a check. And kind of just started really slowly learning about it. 

And in the previous podcast to this, I talked about the different ways to plug into Peat’s stuff. People are calling it pro-metabolic; but what would you call it? 

Danny Roddy: Well that’s a very confusing thing these days. We’ll probably talk about it, but it has become popular enough to where it’s like; now, different people using that label that has nothing to do with Ray Peat.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah! 

Danny Roddy: That makes me sound like a dogmatist or something. But I’m saying; these ideas Ray is progressing are very interesting, nuanced, and they are very unique to him and the lineage of thinkers that he kind of ascends from. Or is in perpetuity…

Liz Wolfe: Oh, I know. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} I know.

Liz Wolfe: Ascendents and descendants. I don’t know.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: Also Descendants is a Disney movie, so that’s. Yeah. It’s not a bad soundtrack actually.

Danny Roddy: {laughs} But now, I guess, that’s just being used for people that eat carbohydrates. 

Liz Wolfe: {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: I don’t know really if that’s a useful term anymore. I don’t really know if any term is that good. 

Liz Wolfe: That’s the thing.

Danny Roddy: Yeah, they’re all pretty bad. And I’m sure Ray would reject all of them. {laughs} What was I; oh, Chris Kresser. There is a four or five minute story, so I’ll spare you all the details. So I always wanted to get into the health stuff. And I have a blog. And I think Chris sent out an email saying; I want to do a podcast. And I was like; I can do a podcast for you. Even though I had no experience whatsoever with it. I just knew how to use Garage Band. And we did a lot of those podcasts. And the thing was, I had a lot of experience under my belt before I ever talked to Chris about anything. So I guess the façade; or I started to see the cracks slowly over time.

For example, I think we were doing an episode on Andropause; which is like hypogonadism, or low testosterone. And I was in my early 20s, but I had dealt with years of that. Years of getting a total testosterone back of 100 or 180. That’s like an old man’s level of testosterone. So when Chris would approach those things, he’d be like; you’ve got to try Tribulus. Or you’ve got to try; insert some root here. And while he was talking; I was like, I know for a fact none of that stuff works. Because five years ago, I was trying that and it was completely didn’t help me whatsoever. 

Chris is a smart guy, but I felt like he; I felt like just the whole philosophy or the world view started to show it’s cracks and it wasn’t as compelling to me. And then I was on an email chain I think with Robb, Chris, and Mat LaLonde, the scientist guy. And how they treated Ray was so distasteful to me. They wouldn’t even meet him at any of his ideas. They’d be like; oh, he’s justifying that to eat ice cream. He’s addicted to sugar. A bunch of silly stuff, you know? And I don’t know why I felt so strongly about him. I don’t know what was in me that was making me think that he was onto something. Maybe it was the temperature stuff. I know I’m all over the place here.

Liz Wolfe: No, this is good.

Danny Roddy: I think I had told Chris at some point that I was freezing cold, and Chris was like; you know that’s a really good quality. The Hunza are freezing cold. And I was like; I know for a fact that this symptom is terrible. It was like a form of torture. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: And I wanted to get over it as soon as possible. {laughs} But he was framing it like it was a good thing; like a longevity factor, or something like that. So I guess when Ray was talking about being warm, it really appealed to me. And then he was also talking about using evil fructose. And just everybody was on the same page that fructose, and probably seed oils and gluten, were the three things that were basically killing everyone. 

And so, again, with my contrary nature, I had put those things to the test. Paul Jaminet was pretty big at the time. Talking about starches. And I had some level of success reintroducing starch into my diet, but then I started experimenting with sugar and felt a little bit better. So I just went down the rabbit hole of things. I was kind of like; what do I not know? I think I know so much about paleo or whatever. But Ray’s stuff is so foreign to me. And the guy seems like he doesn’t want to sell me anything. What is this? {laughs} This is so odd, you know? 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} Yeah.

Danny Roddy: So I guess I was just fascinated by him as a person, but also his philosophy and the science he was sharing. And I guess besides the sugar stuff, one of the huge breakthroughs was; again, I was dealing with that libido stuff for a long time. And it has basically broken up my first real girlfriend at the time. This relationship imploded. Anyways, I managed to meet somebody else, and instead of this relationship going terribly because my libido was so inconsistent, I started implementing an eggshell calcium. So in my paleo diet, it was really high in phosphorous and no calcium whatsoever. And when I introduced the eggshell calcium, five big problems I had went away in like a weekend. And I was like; man that’s crazy. Calcium is important. And I’ve been hearing that it’s not important for a while.

Liz Wolfe: You don’t need it. It’s not natural. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} You don’t need it. Or it will calcify you. It will actually cause a problem, you know? So it was like little wins over the course of time that I was like; man, this guy. Again, asking myself what do I not know? What more is there to explore with all this stuff. 

And I just kept going down the rabbit hole. Because it was such, as you know, a vast philosophy. There is so much stuff to learn about it. I’m still obsessed with the basics. It’s still interesting to me about thyroid, or calcium, etc., etc. 

  • A bioenergetic view of health [38:04]

Liz Wolfe: Ok. So I feel like I’m; oh, what’s the word? Every kid I have; I have two kids, and half of my brain capacity literally flies out the window. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Not presupposing, but I think maybe I’m; I’ll just use that word. Presupposing a level of knowledge of people that are listening. And some people might be totally new to this. So I’m just going to; now that we’re there, I’m just going to ask one of these questions that I’ve popped into the document. Danny; you talk about a bioenergetic view of health and disease in contrast to what many people, and almost any nutrition-centric philosophy espouses, which is a nutrient centered view. 

So, can you; you’ve alluded to it. But can you give us a little bit more of an idea, to you, what the bioenergetic view means and how does it differ; tissues, substances like hormones. Where I plugged in; and what I talked about on Instagram the other day was, I plugged in from the perspective of progesterone. That’s what lit me up. Where I was like; oh! Ok. And that just carried me through; not my first pregnancy, but my second. So that was really big for me. This idea of progesterone and thyroid. 

But there are a ton of other places you can plug in. So I would just love to hear from you what the Danny Roddy-Ray Peat bioenergetic stuff is. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. So one of Ray’s influences is Albert Szent-Györgyi. And he says in one of his books; a cell needs energy for all of its daily activities but also to maintain it’s structure. So if you think about that; the Ray stuff, I think, is focusing on the most basic unit of life, the living cell. And cells form your tissues. And tissues form your organs. And organs form you. So if you have a health problem; it’s not abstract to focus on cellular energy metabolism. That is a deep concept. 

But again, it doesn’t have to be super complex. It can be the pulse and temperature. All your cells are generating heat; consuming oxygen and sugar, making CO2. And the pulse and temperature are representation of kind of the accumulation of energy that all the cells in your body are producing. 

So, the food; obviously nutrition is important. I never come on her and say it’s not important whatsoever or anything. But I think the thing that’s missed; so the energy metabolism dictated by your thyroid and relating to how warm or how high the person’s pulse is; the counterpart to that is metabolic stress. So I think they’re on a see-saw or a tug of war with each other. So as a person accumulates more stressful events in their life. Or polyunsaturated fats, or an accumulation of phosphorous relative to calcium, or like a light deficiency. All these things are types of stress. Those will send strong signals to a person’s body to turn down the thyroid and to increase the adaptive stress hormones and signaling substances. I think to go longer on less. So a famine type of metabolism. 

So people, again, our culture and everything is so dominated by the stress response that people are really good at suppressing their thyroid function and turning up the stress systems. And my concern is that just eating a nutrient dense diet is not necessarily going to reverse that trend. So sometimes the signals to the system to turn up the thyroid function are going to have to be more specific. And sometimes, outside the scope, again, of nutrition. 

For example, people over 30 or 40 or 50; investigating a thyroid supplement ala Broda Barnes, who was kind of the doctor who gave everybody thyroid. That’s not a bad approach, if a person felt comfortable with that. And again, they could explore basic lab work and things like that. But that’s the idea. This tug of war between real metabolic energy; not like hippie energy.

Liz Wolfe: {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: And metabolic stress. Who; Hans Selye is kind of the guy who figured out the stress response. And so that’s leaning towards, I think, the accumulation of stress in a person’s lifetime. So I guess trying to get the thyroid function up is the elevator pitch to all of this stuff. But even that’s confusing. Because if you go to a doctor, they’ll look at like one test, the TSH test, and be like; oh your thyroid is totally fine. But again, that’s why I love the pulse and temperature. Because those usually don’t lie. And they allow the person to retain agency by measuring the pulse and temperature in the comfort of their own home, and they don’t have to go into a doctor’s office.

The last thing I’ll say; you brought up progesterone and estrogen. For example, if a person has really high estrogen, they will chronically be losing magnesium. So again, you could say; like a person thinks they’re estrogen dominant. They could construct this perfect nutrition they had access to, be eating all the magnesium or supplementing that they want. But if their estrogen was chronically high, they’d just be losing it all the time. So again, I think thyroid function is a good place to start for an estrogen or progesterone problem. So again, that’s going to be usually broader than just nutrition, in my limited point of view.

Liz Wolfe: No. I don’t think that is a limited point of view at all. 

Danny Roddy: {laughing} 

  • Buffering stress [43:19]

Liz Wolfe: I think that is entirely accurate, and reasonable, and it’s almost like common sense. Because this idea of buffering stress; is this; do you like that word? Does Danny Roddy like the idea of buffering stress? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, it’s very good. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Ok. Ok.  {laughs} And obviously you want to get rid of it where you can. But for example, for me; I don’t know if you can hear this, but my daughter. The deck is right outside the closet here. And she’s two. And she’s literally running back and forth. Like she must know I’m in here. It’s like, do-do-do-dot, do-do-do-do-dot. And eventually we’ll her; brump. She’ll just fall straight down.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: But for me, for example, I’ve got these children. And there’s a level of stress that is just ever present. It doesn’t matter how much I meditate; which I don’t meditate that much. I have this thing where I think taking a class will replace actually doing the thing that I’m supposed to be doing. So I took the transcendental meditation course. I don’t do it so much, but I’ve got the tools if I want to use them.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: So it doesn’t matter how much of that I do. Or how much I attempt to organize my life in a way that is sort of aligned against the more insidious stressors. There’s a level of stress. And to that end, I think it’s a really useful idea to talk about how to buffer that. How to be aware of it, how to bring it down. And I also don’t think it’s a coincidence that so many people on paleo, especially early on who were eating very low carb. I got into a conversation with somebody on Facebook once who was saying don’t eat tomatoes because there’s too much sugar. And I was like; I don’t even know where to start with this. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: I’m just going to close my browser window and take a deep breath. But I don’t think it’s a coincidence that so many people in the community were all of a sudden talking about adrenal fatigue. Whatever that is; I know that’s not a clinical term. But this idea that we were just succumbing to stress, and probably adding another layer of stress from the dietary choices that we were making.

So, with that said, let’s talk about sugar. {laughs} Ray Peat, sugar, metabolic what have you. So I feel like one of the main reasons Peat’s ideas were originally maybe dismissed, when you brought them up or when whoever was bringing them up in the paleo community was because there is an idea that sugar ain’t so bad. So let’s talk about that, Danny Roddy. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. Well, I mean that was a really controversial idea, maybe in 2011, or something. I mean, people just laugh in your face when you say that.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Orange juice? Ha-ha. Yeah.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. Like, you must not know. You know? But people are coming around to that with Paul Saladino and other types talking about it. Basically, lifting Ray’s most philosophy when they were talking about it. But people; that is not as controversial. But the thing that Paul doesn’t do; again, I have stress or energy god goals with viewing any type of health problem. And I don’t think the desire or the taste for sugar is an accident when a person does feel stressed out. You know? I think that’s a basic biological signal or craving. And ignoring it would be like; oh, do you have to go to the bathroom right now? Just hold it as long as you can. So it’s like; why would I do that? 

Liz Wolfe: Just don’t. It’s bad. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah! 

Liz Wolfe: Willpower. Just stop.

Danny Roddy: Not ancestrally consistent to go to the bathroom, so just hold it as long as possible.

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: But the thing was; again, I didn’t really understand a lot of what Ray was saying when I first got into him. So I actually stepped back and read a lot of Hans Selye’s books. And, Chris Kresser and other people talked about Hans Selye as kind of this pioneer of figuring out how stress manifested. And Selye would inject, to induce stress, would inject insulin in the animals to lower their blood sugar. And they would have a profound stress response. 

So I was like; huh. {laughs} He does this; it’s such a popular thing. And low-carb and carnivore and things are such popular things. I’ve done all those things. I’ve experienced what it was like. I was doing the meat and water carnivore in like 2008 and 2009. So I was like; I’m clearly inducing a high level of stress in my body by not consuming carbohydrates. 

So that’s one aspect of it. But then if you get to the more granular aspect of what is stress to a cell. A cell needs nutrition, but it also needs oxygen and sugar. And not providing those things will turn up cortisol, which will break down your tissues to provide glucose so the cells can use it. Glucose, or sugar, is so important that your body will tear down it’s structure to make it. And so learning little bits and pieces like that was; like a good antistress strategy is to eat enough carbohydrate so you don’t have to rely on cortisol day after day after day.

And what you said was the same thing I noticed. It seemed like the long term low carb or keto people; I’m not saying across the board, but it seems like a lot of them degenerated over time. And again, a lot of people build empires on these ideas and it’s very hard to maneuver away from them. And I’m happy that the internet, and Instagram; or YouTube, I think in 2008, YouTube was just starting. And there were barely any nutrition videos. I remember typing paleo and finding nothing.

So what I’m trying to say is; I’m happy I was able to navigate away from those things when the internet was more in it’s infancy. Because it gets even harder as you build on all these platforms, ad you’ve been saying for X amount of years; this is good, this is bad. 

So I guess, like you said, it’s trying to maintain flexibility in thinking. Because things aren’t going to change. You know? And you don’t want to build some empire around. And I’ve done it. And anybody who has been in the nutrition space has probably done it. We’re getting off track here.

Liz Wolfe: No you’re not. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: But anyway. Sugar, anti-stress, stimulate cellular respiration or real biological energy. The fructose actually actives multiple parts of the respiratory chain that are inactivated by stress. So it has this profound anti-stress effect. And again, the paleo world at least, people don’t really care about this stuff. Because they’re not framing health problems in the context of metabolic energy versus metabolic stress. So again, that’s the huge difference. We’re not thinking about what did the Hunza or the Kitavans do. That’s interesting, but it’s not necessarily relevant to living life in 2022 next to a 5G tower or something. Nutrition is going to have to change to mitigate the stress of those type of events. 

Liz Wolfe: Well I felt like that was a big pulling back the curtain moment for me, when I was like; wow. We really live in a different world {laughs} than our caveman ancestors lived in. Stressors are different. And they’re compounding by the day. And everything is unprecedented, for any of us, just as organisms. Everything that we’re encountering on a day to day basis is just completely unprecedented. Whether it’s emotional or physical; nutritional, whatever it is. So viewing things in this way, and supporting your body in this way nutritionally. 

And also; Ray talks a lot about art and enjoyment and creativity and agency and stuff like that. And that always really appealed to me as well. And you’ve been talking to him recently. I’m not super caught up on the podcast, but you’ve been talking about that fairly frequently, right? 

Danny Roddy: Probably good not to catch up to maintain level of happiness. {laughs} The podcast is a huge downer most of the time. 

Liz Wolfe: Choose your stressors, guys. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah! {laughs} But that’s; I’m interested in the dark side of humanity, as well. It’s like, hoping I can talk about it without ruining my day every time. Yeah. Ray specifically talks about molding our art, and that being a normal part of most people’s life, I guess, back in the 20s or 30s or before that. Even a scientist was expected to be an artist, as well. But now it’s this thing about trust the science, or the science is this thing that you read a book about science and then you know it. 

Liz Wolfe: It’s capital S.

Danny Roddy: Yeah, like TM trademark sign. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah, exactly. 

Danny Roddy: There is some great Michael Crichton quote but it’s like, science isn’t consensus. You could have 100 billion scientists agree on something, and it would take some intelligent 12-year-old in his mom’s basement to disprove the theory with an experiment that could be reproducible that would negate all the consensus of the science. It doesn’t matter how many scientists believe anything.

Liz Wolfe: What’s your hard stop? Tell me really quick, because I have so many things I want to talk about. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. I don’t know; maybe hour thirty? I think I start to lose steam after about that. 

Liz Wolfe: Ok. Well I won’t worry about it for the next 10 to 15 minutes. I just want to make sure I’m keeping an eye on it for you.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. 

Liz Wolfe: I’m sorry, I totally interrupted you in the middle of a thought there. That’s all my fault. 

Danny Roddy: No worries. What was I saying? I was talking about; what science is or what it isn’t. But what were talking about right before that? 

Liz Wolfe: Losing steam. {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: Losing steam. Yeah. {laughs} Losing mental energy. Oh; different aspects. Ok, so my friend Karen; again, the person that was philosophically ahead of me many, many times. She talked about; again, I exclusively thought of healing from a health problem as like a nutritional issue. And Karen would be like; here are stories of people that learned to paint that would heal them. And I don’t fully understand it, but I think that activates a different part of your nervous system. Like, a part that has been atrophied from living in a kind of authoritarian culture. 

So if you can do different activities that maybe put you outside your comfort zone, they can again be anabolic and help a person rebuild themselves. So, again, these are things I love about Ray. It’s not just about nutrition. Life is more intricate and interesting. Talking about the cosmos with him; really interesting, high level concepts. It’s just; once you start talking about that stuff, it’s hard to just exclusively focus on what our hunter-gatherer ancestors did. You know. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Yeah. Or it’s not all carrot salad and orange juice.

Danny Roddy: Yeah. 

Liz Wolfe: And I think that’s actually a really good starting point. So one of the things I was going to say earlier. I get up stupid early because I want to work but I also don’t want to take time away from my kids. So I’m getting up at like 4 o’clock in the morning. It’s just not ideal. But it’s so interesting to me because I will wake up, and I don’t even know if this means I’m doing it wrong. But it feels right to me so I do it. So I have a little quarter teaspoon of salt just right on my tongue. I have a little bit of orange juice, just kind of slide into the day. And I warm up. My body warms up, and I feel really, really good. And I can work for like three hours straight before the kids wake up. And I can go outside, get some sun. Those are the things that I feel like are within my control that I’m trying to kind of buffer that stressful choice that I’m making to get up that early and try and jump right into the stress of work. 

So, the orange juice thing. Right? And I know a lot of people are having a lot of success with doing the raw carrot salad thing as kind of a clean me out, balance hormone type of thing. And that’s great. I think that’s really cool. I think we need to credit the appropriate people for the idea. But, I don’t know where I’m going with that. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} Yeah, drinking orange juice has just become some random thing. But again, as it becomes more popular, I think the origins and the reasons become more obscure and things like that. I guess that’s just the nature. And also, it’s like; I mean, the goal is for everybody to feel better and get healthier because society is degenerating at a rapid pace. So it doesn’t really matter, I guess, who gets credit or who doesn’t get credit. But I guess if a person is interested in first principles, or something, they could probably go back to Ray and figure out what he’s talking about. And that’s a tall task. Ray is talking about cellular respiration and these different hormones modifying the Redox balance of cells and stuff. It’s a tall order to go from maybe Chris or Robb to Ray, because he’s a biologist and he’s talking about science. 

I promise the effort is worth it. And if a person did want to meet Ray at kind of an approachable place, he has an old interview with Gary Knoll in 1996 that I think is probably one of his best interviews. And Gary doesn’t interrupt him, basically the whole time. So you get this uninterrupted stream of consciousness from Ray, starting at like amoebas and fungi and bacteria.

Liz Wolfe: Oh man.

Danny Roddy: And why they don’t want thyroid, and why we do want thyroid. And how the thyroid allows for our evolutionarily advanced cerebral cortex, and more specialized structures and things. And that’s why it’s such an important organ to focus on. And he just lays it out completely. And anybody that listened to that, I think would probably have a better understanding of where Ray was coming from. If they cared. If they cared to learn about where he was coming from.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. And that’s kind of the joy of all of this, for me. It’s just all so interesting. And I’ve learned over time not to freakout and stress out about the things that I can’t understand. And I don’t know; that’s why so much of this is so much fun for me. And it’s also why I never talked about it. Because I kind of felt like; I don’t even know where to begin. I guess orange juice and carrot salad is a good start. 

Danny Roddy: {Laughs} 

  • PUFAs [57:01]

Liz Wolfe: So; and I hate to bring it back to this. But; a couple of things that really boggled my mind. Blew my mind. Was this idea; I had always, when we were talking about sugar. And I always thought sugar causes AGE; advanced glycation end products, and sugar causes blood sugar dysregulation. And yet, when I would actually; I would restrict carbs for a while. I’ve never been good at sticking to anything for any length of time. Which I think actually has benefitted me in the long run. But when I would kind of restrict carbs, I would end up bouncing back and just needing literally a craving that I couldn’t intellectualize my way out of. Just don’t eat it. I just don’t operate that way.

But then at a certain point, after allowing. I’m doing finger quotes. Allowing myself the carbohydrates that I wanted, I would reach this level of just satisfaction. And I’d be good for a long time. Until I started trying to pull them back out again. So I think there’s a reason for that. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. Ray, I think early on, mentioned something called the Randall cycle. So that’s basically the competition between glucose and fat to be oxidized by cells. So the key aspect to this is that stress mobilizes fatty acids. That’s kind of a not controversial thing in the literature. So I was like; huh. All of these low carb people saying it’s so awesome to mobilize fatty acids as fuel, but that’s a dominant feature of the stress response. 

For example; people that go parachuting or F1 racers. Or you have a traumatizing experience, you’ll release fat as a fuel, to presumably slow the system down. Like a pseudo-hibernation state. Avoid excitation. So I was like; this is crazy. All these low-carb people are saying fat is this dominant, amazing fuel. And it’s the preferred fuel in a stress state.

So basically, when they were saying eating carbohydrate will cause a person to lose their tolerance for glucose, I was like; it’s the stress and the fatty acids that are causing that. You know? And you’ll be the only person that remembers this person, but remember Carb-sane Evelyn? 

Liz Wolfe: Yes! Oh my gosh! 

Danny Roddy: She was a pretty wacko person. But she did have a reference on one of her blog posts. And it was like; free fatty acids rise long before hyperglycemia is seen. So long before high blood sugar is seen, we have an elevation of free fatty acids. And I don’t know why; that just stuck in my brain for a long time. And then Ray kind of had the grand context for explaining it. 

Anyway; if a person wants to have better glucose tolerance, or use sugar more constructively and oxidize it to CO2, water, and ATP, they’ll try to lower the stress. They’ll try to lower the free fatty acids. They’ll try to get their thyroid function up. So it’s just; I guess when I was learning stuff like that, I guess I was taking for granted people saying this stuff over and over and over again and not fully understanding what was being said. Like oh; sugar is inflammatory. Ok, well how is sugar inflammatory exactly? Is there a mechanism that makes any sense for that statement that I’ve heard a hundred billion times? And I mean, spoiler alert, I don’t think there is.

Liz Wolfe: There’s not. Right? But there is the mechanism for fat being inflammatory. Correct? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. Especially the PUFAs. The double carbon bonds and stealing the hydrogens and causing free radical damage and lipid peroxidation things. But the; you mentioned something else that I wanted to touch on. {laughs} The methylglyoxal, that AGEs. That’s a little bit more of a nuanced topic, and we’ll probably get bogged down talking about it. But this is actually another thing that implicates the free fatty acids. So a triglyceride is a glycerol with three fatty acids attached to it. So when you’re liberating the fat, you have to break that apart. So you have this glycerol. And I think Chris Masterjohn has done good work on this. But that glycerol can be formed into methylglyoxal, which is a precursor to these advanced glycation end products. 

So people say; oh, you don’t want to eat sugar because of the AGEs. But the glycerol from the free fatty acids is a major precursor to this methylglyoxal that causes the advanced glycation end products that are blamed on sugar. So anyway; this is yet another situation where the fatty acids are causing the AGEs, not the sugar. So, again. 

There was actually a funny exchange between a Whole30 and my really intelligent friend, Andrew. He was basically making this argument. And the Whole30 just banned him off the page {laughs} because I think they were sick of talking to him. Because he’s so high level with all this stuff, I don’t think they had the depth to debate him properly. Anyway. 

To say that most low-carb arguments is wrong is not a stretch from my point of view. I think they contextualize things wrong. Is it better than the Standard American Diet? Yes. But from an academic point of view, do a lot of the things they say make sense? I don’t think so.

Liz Wolfe: And it’s also the problem of time. Right? A lot of these sort of intervention type of things; yes, better in the short term. But extrapolating them over weeks and months and years, there’s the potential for damage. I got asked a question really recently that was like; is there anything you’ve changed your mind about as science has, you know, whatever. And I’m like; this is a really interesting question. Because one of the things I never really thought about was; just because something is good, or helpful, or interventive, or whatever it is now doesn’t mean that same thing repeated over and over forever is going to have that same impact. And that was another real, like another lightbulb for me for sure.

So I think; one thing that a lot of people are getting right right now is the tar and feathering of the PUFAs; the polyunsaturated fatty acids. Even though, by the way, I eat a lot. We’re a mayonnaise household. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: We really like mayonnaise. And it’s very British of us, right? So it’s in my diet. I’m saturated with PUFA. I’m going to die; whatever. But, this idea. I think people kind of grasped it. We used to talk about how canola oil is made and how disgusting it is. And I think we’ve got that down. But one of the things that you guys are also talking about is these omega-3s, and the omega-6s, and the essential fatty acids and all of that. So can we just dip into that really fast before we move onto the next thing? Thoughts on that? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. Again, this is kind of an academic argument. Because you can’t avoid the eicosapentaenoic acid or the docosahexaenoic acid.

Liz Wolfe: Well now you’re just showing off. 

Danny Roddy: I might have gotten that wrong, actually. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: You can’t avoid them. They’re in eggs. They’re in liver. They’re in lots of different foods. So I guess the question is; what’s the threshold of harm? And that’s more of an interesting question. Because you can’t avoid them. 

Also; apparently. So I have not done exhaustive research on this. But Ray said they will accumulate, even if you’re eating like one gram per day of PUFA. And to do that is like to have a laboratory diet, that everybody would probably absolutely hate. And it would not be sustainable.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: So I think the thing with the EPA and the DHA; I think DHA has six double bonds, and then EPA has five double bonds. So that denotes their susceptibility to getting their hydrogens stolen. Stealing oxygen from the cell, creating free radical damage. Being precursors for lipid peroxidation. And nobody thinks lipid peroxidation is a good phenomenon; it harms the mitochondria. So I guess, without all these foods we’ve been eating since childhood having PUFA in it, we might have… like stress is unavoidable. nobody can avoid stress. Hans Selye said the only way to avoid stress was death. 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: But the PUFA is intensifying the stress response. So normally it would be self limiting and terminate itself. Like a person would have a stress response. They’d liberate saturated fats in their blood. That would suppress the hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenals. Which are kind of regulating most of the stress response. And you’d be all good. You’d have a certain stress response, and it would be over.

But instead, the PUFA amplifies it by stealing oxygen from cells, damaging the ability to produce energy. And over a long portion of time, that just makes a person’s stress resistance decrease and get worse and worse and worse. So a person is having to turn up their own stress adaptive systems just to get through the day. So they’re going to turn up adrenaline, and cortisol, and aldosterone and prolactin and estrogen, things like that. 

So I guess that’s the elevator pitch. PUFA is just the antithesis to a robust stress response. And so, they’re not avoidable. And to some degree, whatever a person could do; the first part about all this stuff is quantifying it. So maybe putting the food in a chronometer and seeing how much they’re eating. And then trying things that don’t disrupt a person’s life to try to decrease it a little bit. And I also think of PUFA as a long game. And so, if a person comes to me and they’re eating 20 or 30 or 40 grams, I don’t say to them; oh, if you just got that down, everything would be good. It’s a long project over a lifetime to try to minimize exposure to it. But, yeah. Intensifying the stress response I think is a good elevator pitch for the harms of EPA and DHA.

And you know what; can I add in one thing? {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: No. No you cannot. {laughing} 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} I just wanted to say; EPA does have aspirin like qualities. 

Liz Wolfe: Ah. 

Danny Roddy: So when people say they get relief from inflammation from taking cod liver oil or fish oil or something, they’re not lying. Because it can reduce the formation of these things called prostaglandins. But, it’s like a small benefit for something over the long-term that would probably harm the person. So I just wanted to throw that in, because it’s not like inconceivable to me that fish oil would help somebody with an inflammatory problem. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. OK. So, because I need to pull some quotes out of this podcast and put them on social media {laughs}.

Danny Roddy: {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: I’m going to ask you this question. The Ray Peat diet; is this an oxymoron? Is this really standardizable? 

Danny Roddy: I don’t think so. Because I think the idea is to increase the metabolic rate, and that can be done in so many different ways. So, again, if I just ate the Standard American Diet, but I decided today to go layout in the sun 2 o’clock; I’d be increasing my metabolic rate. And it has basically nothing to do with nutrition.

So, like we talked about earlier; I just don’t subscribe to the idea that if somebody eats some perfect nutrition, whatever that is, that it will necessarily fix their health problems. And so I think there are different tools at our disposal to increase the person’s quality of life, or their metabolic rate that don’t involve nutrition. Again, I’m not saying nutrition is not important. It’s very important. But something you learn talking to lots of people is different people are interested in different things. Sometimes I’ll talk to somebody and they only want to take thyroid. Sometimes I’ll talk to somebody, they have no interest in thyroid, they just want to do stuff with their diet. 

I don’t think of myself as trying to impose my point of view on people. I think of myself as trying to facilitate their interest and hopefully their growth as a person.

  • Vitamin D supplementation [1:08:54]

Liz Wolfe: So here’s another thing I wanted to talk about. {laughs} Vitamin D supplements. So you wrote a really interesting article on your Substack; right? You have a Substack and a Patreon.

Danny Roddy: Yeah, I have too many things these days. The Patreon is probably going to get terminated at some point {laughs}. So the Substack is a better backup; apparently more censorship resistant. But who knows.

Liz Wolfe: I subscribe to several places on Patreon that should probably have been shut down by now, but so far so good {laughs}. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Keep up the good work. So, ok, on your Substack, you talked about vitamin D supplements. And this is very specific, but I do know there are people in my community that are asking about it. There’s this subset of people that are like, “Never supplement with vitamin D!” And there are probably some things to look out for that I have heard people in the community talking about, including you. Which is to apply some of these nutrients topically. But I would like to hear your stance on this idea that vitamin D supplementation is toxic. It’s, what, rat poison. All of that.

And you said on your Substack; I don’t know if this is your quote or somebody else’s, but I thought it was amazing. “Metabolic health is a multi-disciplinary field, and extreme overspecialization often leads to extreme errors.” Loved that. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Talk to me a little bit about your stance on vitamin D and how you addressed some of this; I don’t want to call it dogma, but some of this stuff that people are talking about right now. 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. So, where to start with this one? 

Liz Wolfe: I know. 

Danny Roddy: I think the first thing that needs to be said is; I’m not really pro-supplements at all. I know that will be a weird thing, given that we’ve been talking a little bit about thyroid and stuff. But I think any supplement can harm a person, no matter how benign or innocuous it is. A B1 powder or niacin amide powder could harm a person. And I think it just depends how sensitive their intestine is. 

So with vitamin D, occasional a person would send me a photo of the vitamin D product, and it would contain like citric acid. One contained guar gum. Those are really irritating additives. So if a person takes something orally that has guar gum, or even MCT oil, that can be irritating to a lot of people. And they’re like; oh my god, it caused colitis. Or it caused a really bad mood that day. Or I took it and I couldn’t go to sleep.

I am in a million percent solidarity with that person. Because again, I think at some point, maybe 2014, when I stopped a lot of oral supplements. A lot of my mysterious digestive issues just went away immediately. And I was like; oh my god. I’ve been causing my digestive problems for like 3 years.

So again, I don’t vouch for any supplement. I think they all have to be looked at in a skeptical way, and all potential allergens. So there’s that. And then there’s this argument about cholecalciferol and calcitriol, or 25-D and 1-25-D. And it’s so in the weeds. Even that article, when I tried to address the points a lot of the anti-vitamin D crowd had, they just moved the goal posts for the next sets.

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: So it’s like; I just stopped debating the issue. Because it just seemed fruitless, not really worth it. I almost did that for anybody that I talked to that wanted clarity on the issue. I didn’t really do it to engage in some debate with these people. 

But I guess in my own experience, the reason I am really, kind of have energy to defend vitamin D is in my personal kind of experience; take it with a grain of salt. It’s been one of the most useful supplements I’ve ever used. It’s solved gigantic big problems for me from digestion to anxiety to sleep problems. It does so many things that thyroid does. They’re so similar. 

And on top of that, it kind of fits into this bioenergetic idea that we’ve been talking about this whole time. Like, the promotion of energy. The resistance against stress. And so I think, if somebody is really interested in getting to the heart of this argument, you have to get to the foundation. So in the article you were referring to, I was really careful to say; hey, I’m approaching this from a bioenergetic point of view. Or how energy animates life and how stress kind of destroys life.

So if a person finds an anti-vitamin D person, they should be forced to say what their point of view of sickness and health is. Because I have said explicitly, this is my point of view, this is how I’m going to address the issue. And I’ve never heard that from any of them. It’s kind of like playing tennis with no net. They’re not engaging in a real conversation, because they’re not saying what causes illness, what causes good health. So if you’re not going to say that, it’s not really; it’s pointless to have some debate about it. You know? 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: And again, this overspecialization. I guess the main person in this thing specializes so much on vitamin D. But if you listen to interviews, sometimes other topics will come up and will have nothing to say about it. You know? Again, this is a huge error, I think, because vitamin D affects so many different parts of the system. So if you’re completely unaware of how it affects aldosterone, or how it affects parathyroid hormone, or how it affects prolactin. These arguments might appear to be compelling. But if you find out that you don’t want high aldosterone into old age, or you don’t want high prolactin into old age, or you don’t want high parathyroid hormone into old age, this 25-D, getting that level up, I think is a basic resistance to stress.

So it’s a sticky situation, you know. {laughs} But, again I try to cover as many of their arguments as possible in that Substack and, I don’t know. I guess just summing it all up, out of context. Just meaningless, out of context points that have no relation to the bioenergetic stuff. And again, I’m not saying they have to accept the bioenergetic stuff. They can have their own context. But I’m saying they’re not explicitly saying it, so all their points, to me, fall flat. Because they’re not having an honest debate. They’re just having these factoids that are irrelevant in the grand scheme of things.

Liz Wolfe: Well, and that can be very compelling for people. Right? Especially if you have a supplement to sell. Which, not hating on having supplements to sell. I would very much like to have a product to sell, because how long ago I wrote my book, like 8 years ago? I think that’s O-V-E-R. I think that’s about it. 

Danny Roddy: {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: So, you know. There’s no hate there. It’s a tough thing. But when you have something to sell, I think some of those really overly mechanistic arguments that kind of dazzle people, but perhaps lack context, as you were saying. I don’t know; that’s just kind of the crux of it for me. 

Danny Roddy: Something people need to know about me is I only make money through coaching. So I actually purposefully…

Liz Wolfe: Well, you should join my Beautycounter team. 

Danny Roddy: {laughing} 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Again, like you said. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. But I kind of do that to myself to immunize myself from having attachments to different products and things. So people that sell tons of supplements and stuff; they should probably keep their mouth shut about; like I have heard somebody that sells lots of supplements say that somebody sells a vitamin D supplement. They were defending a vitamin D supplement just because they sell it. Like, the self-awareness in the nutrition space is insane. Or the amount of lacking is insane.

Liz Wolfe: Yes. You get entangled in certain things. But just so everybody knows, Danny Roddy’s moral compass is true north. It’s strong. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Also, my bank account reflects these moral principles too, so yeah. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} It’s honorable. It’s honorable stuff. Ok, so why; can you give us a quick explanation of why you would apply vitamin D topically versus actually taking it as a supplement? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, so I think those allergenic things are larger in size and less likely to get through the skin and enter the blood. So, for example; MCT oil. I think that actually can be pretty irritating to the intestines. If you have a vitamin D supplement made from lanolin and MCT oil; if you took that orally some people could notice a reaction; either diarrhea or bad mood or some other kind of nuanced symptom. But if you put that; I actually have this. This is from last night. I’m not trying to show you.

Liz Wolfe: What are we doing here. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. So I put this on my skin last night, and I’ve just been too lazy to take it off. But that’s how I do it. And I’ll use Glad plastic wrap; BPA free. And I know I sound completely nuts to the people listening right now. 

Liz Wolfe: I used to take raw liver shots. It’s good.

Danny Roddy: {laughs} But that’s the length I’m willing to go to not irritate my intestine. Because I just lose my center when my intestine is very irritated. 

  • On the Back of a Tiger [1:18:00]

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Well, it’s worth it to you. That’s pretty simple. Ok. Alright, so let’s see. There were so many things I could have gotten into here. Endotoxins. Serotonin. You know what I want to ask you? This is going to have no relevance to anybody. What is going on with On the Back of a Tiger? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah, you don’t know? Ok. 

Danny Roddy: Well, I do know. That’s never going to come out.

Liz Wolfe: Oh, that’s so sad. I donated to that Kickstarter.

Danny Roddy: So did I.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: I spent $500 that I didn’t have at the time.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. 

Danny Roddy: To support it. So it’s a totally tragic thing, because I think the whole; the people that were interested in Ray Peat. Like when somebody is saying; why are you doing that. Why are you eating this carrot salad; it would have been great to be like, this is why I’m doing it. Watch this 30 minute video of Ray Peat. This is who I’m getting this stuff from.

And I think $80,000 was raised in that whole process, and it basically went to nothing. 

Liz Wolfe: One 10-minute video about Gilbert Ling.

Danny Roddy: That one 10-minute video. {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah.

Danny Roddy: And those videos were supposed to be released systemically, like every few months. And without activating some nasty part of myself, I’m just really disappointed in the directors. I considered them friends and things, but at this point, it’s indefensible what has happened. It’s like one of the most disappointing things that has happened in the last, I don’t know, 10 or 15 years or something. It sucks really badly. And I would be in hiding if I had taken $80,000 from a community and not produced what I said. I would be ashamed to even show my face. It would be terrible.

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. I mean, I think Gilbert Ling has passed away. Mae Wan Ho has passed away. It’s just; it’s such an unfortunate thing.

Danny Roddy: Michael Pursinger has passed away. Fred Kummerow has passed away. Harold Hillman has passed away. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Yeah.

Danny Roddy: Did I; think Ray is, and me {laughs} are the last surviving people of this footage. 

Liz Wolfe: You take care, Danny. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} So, it’s a tragic thing. It sucks. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. And I think; wasn’t Kummerow; wasn’t he Chris Masterjohn’s mentor in school? 

Danny Roddy: Yeah, I don’t know the full extent of the relationship, but I think Chris lived in his basement or something {laughs}.

Liz Wolfe: Well that sounds like a pretty close relationship; I don’t mean. You know. I don’t know. Housing is housing. I guess it depends on where you live. But yeah, at least we have; I just think it’s so great what you’re doing to; I don’t know. You’re just relentlessly intellectually curious. And it just seems like you have had a decades worth of material just from mining some of the ideas that kind of emanate from Ray Peat. I know he’s not the only guy; but he’s the name, you know, that people know. He’s certainly one of the most fascinating people that I’ve ever read. Or come into contact with his work. 

But it’s just amazing to me that you’ve had so many years’ worth of material to go through, and to analyze and to think about. It’s great that you’re here doing that, and I think what Chris Masterjohn is doing is also really, really cool. Maybe being some kind of indirect lineage from Kummerow. 

But I don’t know enough about any of these scientists to know who to look to next, for more of their ideas. So it’s just a bummer. 

Danny Roddy: That’s the great thing about Ray; he’s a fantastic aggregator of different thinkers. For example; Albert Szent-Györgyi, Otto Warburg, Hans Selye, William F. Cooke. And he’ll do that intentionally in his newsletters, I think, to show; hey, these ideas are bigger than me. He’s not like some star of a show. And also, he’s falling in a tradition of science of this kind of metabolic point of view that has been basically negated by the pharmaceutical genetic determinism idea, that if something is wrong with you it’s because of your genes and you can’t really do anything about it. It’s kind of like a caste system of genes, of who has the superior genes, who has the defective ones. 

So I think really, Ray is just a continuation of this 30s or 40s science. And after 1947 or so, science just went completely off the rails. More of a product orientation. So Ray has just been diligently continuing in this tradition. And that’s why his ideas seem so bizarre to so many people.

But again; if a person is interested, going back and just pursuing Broda Barns or Hans Selye’s books, there’s really not that much weird stuff about what Ray is saying. He’s just a continuation of that line of thinking.

Liz Wolfe: I remember one of the things that I read early on was this idea that there were not; I don’t remember, this is probably something that I heard on your podcast. This idea of dismantling the idea of receptor sites. Like, the entire cell is a receptor. And maybe that’s some of Ling’s stuff.

Danny Roddy: Harold Hillman, Ling, and probably some other people. There’s a guy named Georgi Saba who talks a lot about that. 

Liz Wolfe: There’s a lot of Georgi’s in your orbit. {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: Yeah. {laughs} Again, that’s talking about the fundamentals of how cells work. So if that’s wrong, I mean; drug mechanisms are built on those ideas. So in the trailer of On the Back of a Tiger, Michael Pursinger is saying; hey, if our drugs for cancer don’t work, our drugs for Alzheimer’s don’t work, our drugs for diabetes don’t work; then there’s something fundamentally wrong with the models that we have. 

So I think Ray, again, has been working on; not a new model. Maybe a new model to a lot of people. But like an old model that’s more holistic and more organic. And talking about the things that sustain cells and tissues and organs, and the whole person. And I think Gilbert Ling still has lots of articles about how that idea is wrong; the receptors. 

And then I touch on it a little bit in that vitamin D article. Because that’s one of their huge arguments that you want the 1,25-D to activate the vitamin D receptor.

Liz Wolfe: Ok. So we’re rounding out an hour and a half. And I knew I was going to keep you for longer than I promised. I’m sorry about that. Sorry, not sorry. 

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: But I know that people are really interested in kind of a baseline; a foundational level of what we’re talking about when we’re talking about the bioenergetic view of health and disease. Whether that starts with nutrition, or stress, or whatever it is. So I think we touched on a lot of this stuff. But maybe if you have one last elevator pitch. If people are looking to improve their health, and are really interested in this new way of thinking. Not new; it’s an old way of thinking. But new to them. Where to go first? 

Danny Roddy: Ray has a quote, and it’s something like, “You can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you are.”

Liz Wolfe: {laughs} 

Danny Roddy: So I’m actually, before doing anything, recommend maybe collecting the pulse upon waking. The resting pulse rate. And then maybe taking a cheap Vicks thermometer and putting it under the armpit, ala Broda Barns, and measuring the armpit temperature maybe two or three times and just taking the highest one. 

So your thyroid function should be lowest in the morning. And then it should rise to about, I don’t know, 98.6 or 37 in the afternoon. And the pulse should hover around 80-85 beats per minute, I think, in the afternoon. That would correlate with good thyroid function.

So just getting the lowest point in the morning and getting the highest point in the afternoon for a few days, would I think give a person an abundance of information about their own metabolism, their own thyroid function. And then from there, they could do things that they thought were worthwhile to do. {laughs} 

So, I wouldn’t want to be too specific with it, because again everybody thinks of different things. Like, if the digestion was a mess, they could try the carrot salad. Or if they knew that they were eating a meat heavy diet with lots of phosphorus, they could try including a source of calcium in their nutrition, if they tolerated milk, or parmesan, or Reggiano cheese. 

Or, if they knew they were doing some low-carb thing for a long period of time, they could implement some sweet fruit that they had access to. Which is actually easier said than done. Because a lot of fruit is actually not edible at the grocery store. 

So I wouldn’t want to shoehorn them too much, because everybody sees or knows about different issues they have, and then they could try to correct them based on what was massively deficient in their own lifestyle or diet or whatever. But just getting familiar with the pulse and the temperature. And the one thing I didn’t say; measuring the pulse and temperature when you feel awesome, and then measuring it when you feel absolutely terrible. 

And again, that makes this whole thing more real to a person. It kind of grounds it from an ethereal concept to something that can be actionable. Just like you were talking about with the salt and the orange juice. Having those types of experiences are so critical for moving forward. And I would never tell somebody to do something just arbitrarily, that they didn’t think it was worth it, or didn’t have any kind of noticeable benefit. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. And if I may add, observing all of these things without judgement. Just collect a series of observations. Maybe put together a little bit of a content map of what things look like for you. And you guys; we have a long, hopefully, a long life ahead of us. The next 8 years, like you said, might be a little bit rough. But look, you can distract yourself by taking your temperature and your pulse a lot. 

So just gathering that information and seeing what different things do to those, not endpoints, but those numbers. It’s interesting. And we’ve got plenty of time to figure things out. You don’t have to do a billion things all at once. I think sometimes it’s better to start small.

Danny Roddy: I hate to keep quoting Ray, but Ray says; it’s good to treat yourself like a bit of nature. You know. Not be the authoritarian on yourself, where you have to do this, you have to do that. That’s easier said than done, too. Because I think being high stress can kind of cause negative ruminations and thoughts and things like that. But it just takes one implementation of calcium or salt or carbohydrates to feel better and to move into a, I don’t know, treating yourself more like a painting or a picture, just being more delicate with yourself. Not being so hard on yourself. That strongly resonates with me. The authoritarian in my head was like a brutal dictator about my thoughts, and how I would do things on zero carb and stuff. It wasn’t a healthy thing, but again I think it was just driven by the high stress I was experiencing. 

Liz Wolfe: Yeah. Reclaim your agency over what you’re putting in your body, and how you feel and all that good stuff.

Ok, well this has been awesome having you on. I’m going to pull you on the show again, so sorry not sorry once again.

Danny Roddy: {laughs} 

Liz Wolfe: Don’t go yet. I’m going to stop recording here in a second, but stay on the line for just a second because I’ve got a question for you. But tell everybody where they can find you.

Danny Roddy: Oh man. I have all the things. If you search my name on anything, you’ll find it. I’m a visual person, so the Instagram stuff, I try to make it in a visual way that maybe can help cement some of these ideas. And so I think it’s the Danny Roddy Weblog on Instagram. And then, even though I really am not sure about its censorship proofness, I do have a Telegram. T.Me/DannyRoddy. So that’s where I’m more updating people about things. Those two things I think I’m probably the most active on.

Liz Wolfe: Awesome. Alright, thanks so much Danny! 

Danny Roddy: Thanks for having me, Liz. 

Liz Wolfe: No overshare this week, folks. So that is it for episode 26. A big thank you to Danny Roddy for being so gracious with your time, and to Arrowhead Mills for making this episode possible. Look; folks, I recognize the irony of speaking to Danny Roddy about Ray Peat’s ideals and nutrition, and then speaking about Arrowhead Mills. But again, we do what works for us. 

Remember, you can ask me anything by sending me a DM @RealFoodLiz on Instagram. But the best way to ask is to go to www.RealFoodLiz.com/AskLiz. That way, they don’t get lost in my inbox. 

I appreciate you! I’ll see you next week. 

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