Kip Andersen, Dave Asprey, Dr. Joel Kahn: “The Ideal Diet: The Directors of […]” | Talks at Google

[MUSIC PLAYING] DAVE: Good morning. AUDIENCE: Good morning. DAVE: So today’s a
very exciting day. It marks the launch of our
Talks at Google Friendly Debate Series, where we
bring together people who take different
positions on key issues, with the hopes that
through their dialogue, we’re able to better understand
questions whose answers are less clear cut. So today the question
we’ll be exploring is, what is the ideal diet? And so I’d like to begin by
introducing our, moderator Google’s very own
Jesse Michael’s. [APPLAUSE] Jesse, Jesse is
a program manager on machine intelligence,
with a particular affinity towards dietary habits. Please join me in welcoming
to the stage Jesse Michaels. JESSE MICHAELS: Thank you, Dave. I really appreciate it. Yes, I do have a
particular affinity towards dietary habits, mainly– like Kip, actually,
I’m a hypochondriac, so I’m always kind of thinking
about what is the ideal diet. And I think like a lot of
you, you read articles, you read press, you look
at what’s out there, and there are a lot
of experts saying completely conflicting things. There’s no kind of apparent
consensus on this issue. And so what I’m hoping
to get out of this is kind of a rational
elucidation and dissection of what is the ideal
diet from people who have different viewpoints. But hopefully, we can
find some common ground and we can give you some
resources to kind of look this up for yourself as well. So I want to introduce
my panelists. So Dave Asprey. He’s a businessman,
an author, a blogger. He’s a biohacker. He’s tried everything
on himself. He’s a human guinea pig. He recently wrote
“Headstrong,” which is all about mental clarity and
peak performance and what diet is conducive to that. And then famously, his
kind of foundational work is “The Bulletproof
Diet,” which involves allocating 50% of your
diet to healthy fat. After him, we have we have Kip. Kip just came out with a
bombshell of a documentary on Netflix. Kip Anderson, by the way. And it basically has
caused a lot of people around the world to go vegan. And it talks about
all of the dangers of eating meats, processed
meats, and dairy, and it exposes a
lot, and I think it’s a really good documentary,
and you guys should definitely check it out. Before that, he actually
had a documentary called “Cowspiracy,” which talks
about the environmental dangers of eating meat. So I think that work kind
of speaks for itself, and you guys should definitely
watch it if you haven’t. And then we have Dr. Joel
Kahn, last but not least. You guys should go
on That really kind of is the
best kind of resource for him in terms of his work. He’ll give you
weekly health tips. So maybe you watch
Kip’s documentary and you want to go
vegan, Dr. Joel Kahn’s a great kind of practical
way to go vegan. He gives you a lot of
really helpful tips. He’s been vegan for
25 years himself. He is a cardiologist, and he
focuses on preventative care importantly. And then finally,
he has an actually an Amazon best-selling book
called “The Whole Heart” that you guys should
definitely check out. So without further
ado, I kind of want to get into just
individually your backgrounds and the kind of trajectory
of your thought. So, how you came to believe
what you currently believe is the ideal diet through
your own personal experiences. We can start with you, Dave. DAVE ASPREY: I’ve
been a Silicon Valley guy for most of my career. I used weigh 300 pounds. And I couldn’t really see my
feet, much less touch them. As my career was taking
off, I was a co-founder of a part of the company that
held Google’s first server when it was two guys from
Stanford and one server, before Google built
its own data centers. And I started to have
really serious brain fog. So my career’s taking
off, and I just found I couldn’t
really pay attention. My emotions were
all over the place. And I decided, well, I could
work out six days a week. In fact, I can cut my
calories to 1,800 calories. I could go vegan
before it was cool. And all I got was
fatter and more tired. After 18 months of
working out, I could bench press all of my friends. And they didn’t
work out, and they were all thinner than I was,
and I ate less than they did. And at a certain point
I’m like, I’m trying, but maybe I’m not
trying hard enough, and I thought it
was a moral failing. And eventually, I
said, you know what? I’m a hacker. In fact, I can take the stuff
we use to manage the internet, and I can turn it
back on myself, and I can look at
things we know, understanding there’s a lot
of things we don’t know. When we work on
infrastructure, you only know the stuff you
control, but you’re going out across all the stuff
that other people control, yet somehow you can still
make the results you want. We still don’t know a huge
amount about our own biology, but it’s very easy for
us to say, all right, here is a bunch of data
points, rather than epidemiological studies
saying, some people eat this, and not controlling for
millions of variables that might matter, and sort
of make a conclusion there, I could actually go out and say,
what am I testing right now, is there a plausible
reason for this, and do I see and feel
results that I can measure? And I lost 100 pounds. I turned my brain back on. I’m younger and more
energetic on every level. I can. And it turns out there is
enormous amounts of data that everyone listening to
this can go out and Google for. And you can find, oh, wait,
there are studies on PubMed that say the exact opposite of
what things like the American Heart Association
and the recent attack on coconut oil,
things like that– oh, wait, you stopped looking
at all data after 1974 in order to make
those conclusions? Well, what about the new data? So it’s becoming increasingly
hard to fool people, but increasingly easy
to just simplify things. When I look at my favorite
animal protein product, it’s spider venom. Wait, that’s an animal protein
that’s clearly bad for you. And my favorite
plant based protein is ricin, the nerve gas. So anytime someone tells you
plant-based or animal-based, those are meaningless terms. It’s like a liquid diet. Well, was it gasoline,
or was it water? Because they do different
things to your biology. And how is it prepared? All these things matter. And I ended up with this
basic algorithm that works. And the algorithm
goes like this. Stop doing the things
that make you weak. You probably don’t
know all of them, but at least find some of them. Then do the things
that make you strong. And most nutrition
research focuses on just doing stuff
that makes you strong, or these very broad
platitude-based things that are so broad that
they caused you to do things that make you weak
even if there is value in them. So it’s a question of
having precision for you. And prime examples would be
if you eat processed meats, they do one thing to you because
of a bacteria in your gut. If you eat unprocessed meats
that are fed a different thing, it’s actually a
different outcome. It even has different
environmental costs. So you look at the
system of the human body. You look at all the
things that are going in that you can
measure, you realize you’re not measuring
almost everything that’s going on in the world around
you that affects your biology. And then you start
course correcting. And for me, it led to
profound improvements in cognitive
function, as well as sort of effortlessly
maintaining the weight that I wanted without
ever experiencing hunger and cravings. And I quit being a raw vegan. In fact, it made me really sick. And a lot of people have
had problems with that. And there are other
people, like Joel here, who have been
vegan for 25 years and are still walking around. So I will say one
thing that I learned through the course of
all this, if you’re not covering your plate
with vegetables first, you’re doing it wrong. However, not all vegetables
do the same things to you either, so you might want
to pay some attention there. So you have to get
the details for what works for you, because
your ultimate diet may not be the same as mine. But I guarantee
you, if you do less of the stuff that makes you weak
with your genetics, your biome, your mitochondrial DNA,
you’re going to like it. And there’s a list
of things that make large swaths of
the population weak. So you just have
to figure out what your own personal kryptonite
is, avoid that, and then play around with other
things, like macronutrients. JESSE MICHAELS: Got ya. Kip, I’m sure you have
a lot to say to that. KIP ANDERSEN: I’ll keep it
a little shorter than that. So basically, it’s really
started out as similar. I think our backgrounds
are similar as really truth seekers. We’re really trying to
find out what the truth is, what the truth is. And I was a hypochondriac. I was a hardcore hypochondriac. I took, at 18 years old,
Metamucil every day for fiber. And my both sides were
diabetes and all these things. So I was really
hardcore into genetics. Like, oh my god. I’m going to die. And then, I guess this is
the part where we differ, where what my
decision was, what I was trying to do under my
own experiments on myself is I want to take other
things in consideration, not just myself. A lot of people think of
health as just me, me, me. And I was getting to the point
where I was starting to do a little bit of yoga, still
starting to see the bigger picture of now that we’re– if anyone’s seen the
film “Cowspiracy,” it goes into this
a little bit more. We’re 7 billion
humans on this planet. When I think of
holistic health, I don’t think of holistic
health as my own body, this physical being. Not only do I think of
health as mind/body, but I sort started thinking
more of spiritual health, spirit health, mind, body, spirit,
and then taking health into consideration
of the entire planet, and then taking health
in also consideration of my personal moral compass. And then that’s what
I said, rather than– I guess you’d say
biohacking, I guess I would call it bioharmonizing. Like, my whole thing is
about harmonizing myself within this greater
picture of this planet, especially at the
time we live in. Rather than Bulletproof
Coffee or Bulletproof Diet, you know we have
enough bullets arounds. It sounds like a Trump thing. I’d say more of something
like a harmony diet, to incorporate myself
within the bigger picture. So that’s why I started
experimenting different things, looking into the
environmental impacts. As you see with “Cowspiracy,”
interviewing different doctors. By no means is it
cherry picking, if anyone says that “What
the Health?” if anything, it’s finding gold flakes of
this murky industry-funded river and finding out the truth. And then the other
thing I say is choose, really– there’s one
thing about learning the truth, the
feeling the truth, and that’s where you go to a
place like True North Health Center, and you see
those four case studies that people think are fake
in “What the Health?”, where they’ve reversed
their illnesses where they thought they were going
to die within weeks or months. In three weeks, they’re
off all the medications. And that is truth. And I think it’s one
other thing too, though– this is kind of going
another question, but we’re at a time of
history we’re people are looking at this time. This time. And there is only,
essentially, you look at different periods of
time, different movements, whatever you call it, civil
rights, women’s rights. You know, more recently, gay
rights and transgender rights. They’re all still going. They’re all still happening. We’ve not resolved any of these. And the next one
is animal rights. And the next one is
about encompassing all, that we are all equal. And that’s where the
mind, body, spirit comes in, and not only spiritual
health, but spiritual health for the entire planet. And I think that’s the
thing that people who get lost in “What the Health?” is when we go to North Carolina,
regardless of four or five facts that we can
debate all day, whether it’s right
or wrong, because you can manipulate
nutritional studies, but go to North Carolina
and see “I Love Bacon,” or “I love meat.” Do you really? Do you really? I know where my meat
comes from, so it’s OK. Do you know the
animal was killed? What slaughterhouse was that? And would you really
kill your own animal? So that’s a part
too, that you have to look into consideration
of complete total health. And I think that’s
where my journey leads to “Cowspiracy” that goes
into “What the Health?” is health is much bigger
than just me, I, and that’s all that matters. It’s more about
harmonizing yourself with something that’s
much greater, especially with 7 billion people. JESSE MICHAELS: Doctor? JOEL KAHN: So my journey
to sit in the chair today began when I was actually
18, and Jesse it’s cool. But actually, I walked into
the dormitory cafeteria at University of Michigan,
1977, and I became a plant eater because the salad bar
attracted me and nothing else. So I’ve not had a
burger in 40 years. I’m 58 and a 1/2 years old. Never taken a prescription drug. Quite stable. And I actually have more
energy than all my peers, and they know that. And it irritates them,
because they like their burger and fries still. But as I entered
medical training– and you know, I don’t want
to talk anymore about me. It doesn’t really matter. We’re all truth
seekers, but I do it in a medical office,
where I feel completely obligated to give
people direction to maintain their health,
prevent disease, or reverse the disease they have. I think it’s a very
high moral obligation, and it’s caused me to
be a constant student. If there was data
that I found that said that patient with heart
disease eating meat would improve their health,
I would recommend that and routinely prescribe it,
because my moral obligation. It doesn’t matter what
I eat in my own home. It matters what’s going
to be right for you. So I’ve had to seek that out
and try and synthesize and guide people. There’s some really
important people in this town that
have dropped dead of the disease I take care of. I’ve been up at
3:00 in the morning taking care of heart
attacks for 30 years now. But I mean, a good friend of
mine, Dean [INAUDIBLE],, who was a big project manager
at Apple, 2013, playing hockey dropped dead of a
90% blocked artery, unknown. Kirk Krikorian– some you may
know that name, maybe not. Big time Silicon Valley
investor and such. Surfing last year. Walking to his car, drops
dead of a heart attack. You guys might not know
this, the former CEO of Intel, Paul Otellini, four
weeks ago dropped dead at 66. I mean, these are tragic things. That’s what I’ve
been dealing with. So I mean, the focus
is health promotion I do believe there’s a uniform
diet we could agree with, the three of us sitting up here. There is a group called True
Health Initiative, which has over 400 health
and nutrition experts all over the world, very
different opinions, who’ve agreed to come up with a core
kind of nutritional philosophy no matter where they are and
what they personally at home. And I’ll leave it to Jesse to
maybe ask a few more questions, and I’ll share that with it. But this is a relevant
conversation for you in your 20’s, because
we know from studies, I am not here to really
fight with anybody. Dave kind of threw
out something called PubMed, which is a National
Library of Medicine, 26 million peer-reviewed medical articles. I live in PubMed, because if we
don’t base our recommendations on science, recognizing the
flaws, funding conflicts, that there’s more associations
and actual randomized trials. Nutrition trials are tough. Let’s get a million
people to eat one way and a million
people to eat the other. Do that for 20 years
and solve these things. It ain’t happening. So we’ve got to
go with, you know, eating too much x is
associated with y, or we have nothing to stand on. But I think there
is a commonality. And in fact, none
of us here eat crap. None of us here pull into
fast food restaurants. None of us here add sugar
in our food on purpose. You know, none of us here
barbecue things to a crisp and eat all the toxic components
that come out of barbecuing called advanced glycation end
products, heterocyclic amines, and such. So there’s a lot in common here. And I think that’s important
as you walk out of here. You know? Don’t go on your way home,
pick up bucket of KFC, even if it has a Susan G.
Komen Breast Cancer Prevention symbol on it. And don’t go buy
Fruit Loops if it has the American
Heart Association symbol for whole grains. Eat whole grains. In my world, just
don’t do it in a way that’s perverse to your health. JESSE MICHAELS: Cool. I want to kind of establish
where the commonalities are, and then where the kind
of sticking points are. So I think everybody
on this panel is pretty against like,
processed meats, for example. You’re a proponent of grass fed. JOEL KAHN: I like grass. JESSE MICHAELS: You like grass. Exactly. You’re full vegan. Correct. And so is that
really– like, I want to establish a framework for
what we actually disagree on. Is that it, or do you guys
disagree on more than that? DAVE ASPREY: I
actually calculated the deaths per calorie
of The Bulletproof Diet. I was in Tibet,
where I discovered yak butter tea that was the
genesis for Bulletproof Coffee. And I was vegetarian
at the time. And I said, hey,
Mr. Llama, the guy who leads the monastery
at 15,000 feet. And I said, that’s a yak
skin on your prayer pole, and your sign over
there says “No killing, no lying, no drugs.” So you’re a hypocrite. And he started laughing. He goes, well, one
death feeds everyone. And we talked about
it for about an hour. And I live on an organic farm. We raise our own sheep. I’ve been to the slaughterhouse. I haven’t had a grain-fed
animal in 10 years. And if you’re eating
grain-fed meat right now, you’re doing it wrong. You’re harming the planet. You’re harming yourself. Bottom line is when you
feed that stuff to a cow, especially if it’s
not even organic, and you’re getting
glyphosate in there, you’re getting
antibiotic residues that cause your gut bacteria
to change, which makes them create toxic compounds. So I think for me, soil
integrity and ocean integrity is at the root of the
recommendations that I make, because you will not be a high
performance human if you live in a world full of crap around
you that’s a result of the diet you make. And that’s an area where
I think all of us agree, it’s not just about us. It’s about how we feel. And I also think that all of
us are in alignment on the fact that we want to feel
a lot of energy. Because if you make it
about everything around you, and you like crap all the
time, and you’re struggling, and your brain doesn’t
work very well, you are wasting all the
calories you put into your body because you’re not
getting a return on those. And that’s something
that happened to me in a lot of my life. And like, I will not
allow that to happen to anyone that I help today. JESSE MICHAELS: Kip? KIP ANDERSEN: Just one
thing on the grass-fed beef. If anyone’s watched
“Cowspiracy,” we don’t even talk about
factory-farmed beef. We go straight
into, OK, everybody knows that’s bad for you. Grass-fed beef as
according to land use– these are things
that are not debatable. Land use– and you have sheep– for a grass-fed cow takes
five to 10 times as much land. So the part that’s
debatable, greenhouse gases, that’s debatable. What’s not debatable
is land use. We have a part in
“Cowpiracy” that showed if everyone had two
scoops of butter, cow fat, and ate grass-fed beef, of how
much land use it would cover. Just America would
go north of Canada. This is every square inch. This would be leveled, all
the way down to Brazil. And that is not one
other single animal can live where there’s
pasteurized grass-fed beef. That’s why all the wolves are
killed, all the bears, all the coyotes, while there’s
more horses round up, living in holding cells than are free. And that is not factory farm. That is grass-fed. The reason why is land use. Land use, and they
live 35% longer, so they’re using more resources. So the whole grass-fed thing
is just a marketing term, you know, about
regenerating soil that’s already been
exposed of what that is. Only 15% come out– when you have any animal,
and you whatever you eat, an animal, only about 15%,
20%, comes back in the land, so you’re regenerating
hardly anything. It’s extremely inefficient. And I think just the other
thing that we disag– it’s very important to
note of you mentioning, like when you did this
biohacking and losing weight, it’s very important
to recognize– and you say this openly–
that you were on steroids and testosterone and legal,
as you call it, “meth,” but safer, for eight years. And I think that’s
very important– DAVE ASPREY: No. That is false. Just so we can be
really clear on that. KIP ANDERSEN: OK. Well, it was medophenol,
or some sort of speed. If I am jacked up on– DAVE ASPREY: It’s
not speed, dude. Get your science right. KIP ANDERSEN: OK, OK. Something that’s
for narcoleptics. Does anyone know
what narcolepsy is? It’s someone who takes
that for steroids. And I think it’s
just very important to note that that’s
not left out. Because that’s very
important in this equation. So we can do this without
getting jacked up on drugs– DAVE ASPREY: All right. Here’s the deal. I went off the stuff
for three years while developing The
Bulletproof Diet. The fact that I use cognitive
enhancers kicks ass. And the fact that
you’re not doing them might be why there’s cigars
on hot dog buns in your movie. KIP ANDERSEN: What? [INTERPOSING VOICES] DAVE ASPREY: All right. All right. All right. All right. OK. So– JOEL KAHN: I’m
gonna bring it back. I’m actually a
militant vegan blogger. KIP ANDERSEN:
That’s an oxymoron. JOEL KAHN: Mike
[INAUDIBLE] labeled that. But I’m in a very loving
and harmonious mood today. I’m just excited
to be at Google, and all your people out there. I will say one,
and only one thing. Dave may not have seen it. May have seen it. October 2, 2017,
127-page publication of Oxford University on the
impact of grass-fed beef on the environment. It’s as deleterious to
greenhouse gas production as his CAFOO-based,
grain-fed beef. According to science, and
I’m always going to science. I don’t really want an opinion. I want science. I trust doctors at universities. I want to bring this
together, though. I’ve mentioned something called
the True Health Initiative. It’s not a paid position. It’s over 400 scientists and
physicians and dieticians that have come up. And I want to give you that
core definition that we use, because I want you to walk
out of here with something you can do. So number one, eat
minimally processed foods. I think all three of us
will say that’s right. That’s not the middle
of the grocery store. That’s not vending
machines, usually. That’s not fast food. That’s not gas station food. Eat minimally processed. Eat close to nature. If you can find
farmer’s markets, if you can find produce– frozen vegetables
are often better than stuff that’s
been transported 2,000 miles from California
to my home in Detroit. Eat close to nature. Number three is eat a
predominately a plant-based diet. Those aren’t my words. It doesn’t say exclusively. The plate needs to be full. The USDA says that
half your plate should be fruits and vegetables. The Harvard School
of Public Health says half your plates are
fruits and vegetables. How many people do
that in America? Less than 3%. So predominantly plants. And your liquid should
be predominantly water, not sugar-sweetened
beverages, not all kinds of energized drinks that are
putting chemicals in you, and particularly, refined
sugars, you don’t need. We have to be very
careful about the language too, because there’s
all kinds of carbs, there’s all kinds of sugars. Are they added in an orange? Are they natural in an orange? Are they added in a soda? And you add to that seven to
eight hours of sleep a night, you add regular physical
activity, you add community, you add socialization,
and social support, you prevent disease
and you promote health, whether you’re in Okinawa,
whether you’re in Sardinia, whether you’re in Costa Rica,
whether you’re in Loma Linda, whether you’re here
in Mountain View. I mean, it isn’t that hard. So if you like that three
or four close to nature, minimally processed,
predominantly plants, and you want to put
some other stuff on it, you’re probably on
the right track, because you’re doing better
than you know 3/4 and 80% of people that don’t have
their own animals in the yard and don’t have access
to the kind of food we’re talking about. We’re all sort of
elitist eaters, either because of spiritual,
because of environmental. In my case, predominantly
because of medical. I think you have to be– and one of the questions
Jessie prepared us for, where does moderation– I am not– I don’t think any of us are
moderate eaters on the panel. I’m an exquisitely
careful eater, and I’ve done that for 40 years. And I teach my patients be
moderate in your exercise. Be fanatic about the care
you put in your body. I think Dave would
agree with that. He’s fanatic about what
he puts in his body in a different sense. But there’s a lot in common
here that would bring up the health of America. JESSE MICHAELS: Dr. Kahn, I
want to press you on one thing. Just the grass-fed beef. Both you and Kip spoke
to kind of just negative environmental repercussions. Do you think it’s not
healthy as well, and why? JOEL KAHN: Just a
quick answer, because I do want to be fair to time. It’s an elitist
question in that 95 plus percent of the
meat eaten in America is not grass-fed beef. It’s still what’s called
CAFO factory farmed beef. We all agree that is
the worst of scenarios. To cruelty to animals,
cruelty to workers, disease in workers,
environmental destruction. And the cool thing is with
all these ag-gag laws, now drones are flying
over these places and making movies that
couldn’t be made before of these pools of
crap from animals that are exploding and going
into the waters and the ground. Why do we have arsenic
in rice and chicken? Because there’s just been
exposures of all these toxins in the environment. It’s horrible. So we all agree. Shut those down. And that’s not going
to happen quick. That’s Tyson. That Smithfield. Conagra. These are the biggest,
most powerful companies with lobbies. But you should be concerned
that 95-plus percent of the meat in America is toxic. Dave agreed in a blog
he wrote that meat is like smoking if we’re
talking about processed meat. And we all agree to that. I mean, it’s horrible. But it’s what
you’re going to eat unless you’re exquisitely
careful about what you put in your body. This is a good age to
do it at, because you’ll reap the benefits. Science is progressing. You guys can all
live over 100 if you take good care of yourself now. You really can, and
wear a seat belt. [LAUGHTER] KIP ANDERSEN:
What’s your thoughts on whether grass-fed
beef is better though? JOEL KAHN: Well, you know,
there’s little clues. There is science–
again, I like science. There’s clues that grass-fed
beef versus conventional beef has some health benefits
over the CAFO-raised beef. The factory-farmed beef, in
terms of omega-3 and some nutrients. There is no beef on the
planet that has fiber. There’s no beef on the
planet that has much in the way of rich vitamins. We know those are plant-based. But we all agree your plate
should be either completely, or to a large extent,
covered with plants. That’s already elitist
compared to the 1% to 3% of Americans that actually
eat five servings of fruit and vegetables a day. We want you to do that. There’s this coolest
study out there. You take a hospital hamburger. Literally, and I
love it, because I think hospital food is the
biggest damn embarrassment in the United States right now. You take a hospital
hamburger and you eat it, and you can measure within 45
minutes if your arteries are functioning less well than
before the hospital hamburger. You throw a big slab of
avocado or a big salad along with the hamburger,
you bring yourself back up to neutral. So whatever you’re
eating, always add the plants to the meal. Again, there’s commonality
of opinion here. Grass-fed beef,
again, 90% plus– John Mackey spoke here,
the founder of Whole Foods. His kind of philosophy is eat
plants 90% and the last 10% is your decision. There’s certain
patients I don’t think that’s true for as
a medical doctor. But as a societal
recommendation, that’s cool by me. JESSE MICHAELS: OK. Assuming diets aren’t
one size fits all, how do you go about kind
of figuring out what the best ideal diet is for you? DAVE ASPREY: One of the things
I did on the Bulletproof Diet roadmap, which is a free
download on the website, and it’s basically my first
big book in an infographic, is to say, look, there’s
a bunch of suspect foods. And one of the examples here
is the nightshade family. These are potatoes, tomatoes,
eggplant, bell peppers, things like that. Roughly a third of cases
of rheumatoid arthritis are caused by eating this. And what happens is
that animals don’t want you to eat their babies. That’s why we’re so
protective of our young. Well, plants really can’t
do those same things, so they cover their babies
in protective compounds. That’s why if you
go into the park and you eat most of
the plants there, you’ll get profoundly
sick, because they’re protecting themselves from you. So some of us have genetic
reasons that we will not handle those well. If you give me
something that’s cooked with a little sprinkle
of cayenne pepper, I’ll have the arthritis
back in my knee that I’ve had since I was 14. It’s caused by food. That said, cayenne is
really a healthy compound for the other 2/3 of people. So I go through these four big
categories of plant defense systems that are put in by
mother nature, not by man, and say, these may not be
compatible with your biology, but they might be compatible
with the biology of someone next to you. So you need to eliminate
all of those likely suspects for a couple of weeks
and see how you feel, and then go out and have
like, pizza, beer, cheesecake, whatever bad stuff you can
think of and just be like, oh, my god, that’s how
I used to feel. All of that stuff
came back, and then go through the process
of elimination. It is not the same for everyone. JESSE MICHAELS: You
guys would probably say a lot of the foods– JOEL KAHN: I’ll grab
a quickie on that. So if it’s not
one diet fits all, and I don’t know
that we know that. I don’t know that we couldn’t
put everybody on a single diet and their health would blossom. You know what I would choose? It would be a
well-constructed rainbow diet of minimally processed
plant-based foods. It works real well
for disease processes to eat that way according
to medical science, and certainly in my
field, cardiology. But there is such
a thing, if you don’t feel well, if you’ve
got brain fog, if you’ve got bloating, if
you’ve got joint pain, do an elimination diet. Dave and I share
a friend JJ Virgin who wrote a rather good book
called “The Virgin Diet.” So you eliminate dairy. See how you feel for
six to eight weeks. Very common, not just
the bloating and the gas. My wife was that example. I hope she doesn’t
mind my saying. But when we walked into that
dorm cafeteria 40 years ago and she stopped eating dairy,
in a week she felt better. She thought it was just
Jewish food made you feel bad. It turns out it was dairy in the
Jewish food made her feel bad. You know, she’s enjoyed that. So do that. Try gluten-free. I don’t think America needs
a gluten-free 100% of people, but there are people with
celiac disease undiagnosed. There’s people who have
celiac sensitivity. Do that for six to eight. It might even take three months
to see how better you feel now. Now, I will argue
with you, if you don’t need to be
gluten-free, the science says, particularly if
you’re buying processed, rice-based bread substitutes,
which are common everywhere, you may not be doing
your health a favor. So elimination diet
is a way to do it. There are a lot of people who
will do a 21-day Daniel fast. Maybe you’ve heard of
that in churches, which is based on the Book of Daniel. It’s kind of a plant-based
religious thing. But the medical documentation
from the University of Tennessee in Memphis is
blood sugar, C-reactive protein, blood pressure, blood
cholesterol will go down in three weeks by doing kind
of that kind of elimination. And then go back and add
foods in one at a time. Very logical way to
see what’s bugging you. KIP ANDERSEN: Just
to add to that, because we asked every
single doctor in our film, oh, you hear, oh, I’ve been
vegan for two weeks, or three weeks, or whatever it is. Or at least people say,
and I don’t feel good. What is going on? The bottom line they
all kind of said is that get tested
for what’s going on. I think Dr. Goldhamer says,
there’s nothing in dead rotting animal flesh, whether it’s
you just killed or not, in animal flesh that you
cannot get somewhere else. And you so find out. If you’re not
feeling well, you’re not having the right diet. There’s maybe something that you
can tweak yourself, your diet to. But you can
substitute everything with plant-based foods. If you love cheese, like I do– I was a hardcore cheeseholic. When I got off cheese, when I
went vegan for the first three weeks, I’ve felt
the best I’ve ever had in my life to this day. But now finally, I’ve
been vegan 10 years, just in the past year and a
half to two years, now I have nut cheeses again,
because they’re actually good. So that’s the main
thing, is the takeaway. If you have something
to tweak to your diet, it’s Keto or whatever, or
even if it’s fat or not fat, you can have a plant-based
version, and it’s incredible, and it’s good for you. Not only for good
for you mentally, physically, spiritually, but
it’s good for the planet, and you don’t have
to kill any animals. Bonus all around. JOEL KAHN: I just want to
jump in there for a minute. The hottest diet right
now in Silicon Valley according to the
newspaper almost every day is the keto diet,
ketogenic diet. Low carb, relatively high fat,
and brain power, and the rest. And I’m not even mimicking it. In fact, there’s a
new startup this week, you can now buy ketone
bodies in a bottle, three bottles for
$100, to enhance your athletic performance. There are plant-based
keto diets. There’s a Facebook user
page in the last few months that’s grown to enormous numbers
of plant-based ketogenic diet. But more important, science
rules to me, Valter Longo, PhD, is the world’s leading expert
on aging and longevity. He’s the head of a
Biogerontology Research Institute in Los Angeles at USC. He’s got a plant-based
ketogenic five day a month diet I use
in all my patients. It’s amazing and transformative
to eat nuts, olives, 60% of calories from
fat, very low protein, because protein
activates aging pathways. No added sugar, because
everybody hates sugar. Nobody loves sugar. We can debate what sugar
does to your health status, but we don’t like it. And the results that have been
published in animals and humans with a plant-based,
five-day ketogenic diet are actually
transformative in terms of multiple sclerosis,
brain growth, BDNF, a protein in your brain. But just getting a
flat belly again. So there are all
these different paths. I just wanted to shout out. But even in Silicon
Valley, you can be on the cutting edge of
what seems to be a trend, but also do it in a way that
might be a little more helpful, in my opinion. JESSE MICHAELS: Dave, if you
can get all of your protein from plants and you can do a
plant-based ketogenic diet, why are you a big fan of
grass-fed beef and other meats? DAVE ASPREY: There are these
things called cell membranes in the body. We like to think that we have
this membrane around ourselves, but it’s actually made
of tiny droplets of fat. And all of our hormones are
made out of cholesterol. And very interesting
new research just came out that shows that
the plaque in your arteries doesn’t come from the
food that you eat. It actually comes from bacteria. JOEL KAHN: It’s a maybe. DAVE ASPREY: In the gut. JOEL KAHN: But it is new. DAVE ASPREY: Yeah,
well, it’s that whole I like science thing. JOEL KAHN: It’s one study. It’s one study. [LAUGHTER] DAVE ASPREY: I don’t know. It’s one study, though– JOEL KAHN: Versus 110
years of other studies. But there is one
new study, I agree. DAVE ASPREY: This is
that whole epidemiology versus understanding the
core mechanisms of life. When we analyze the fats and
we look at exactly what they’re made of, we’re like, oh, those
fats don’t come from plants. They don’t come from animals. They come from
bacteria, which means we’ve got a problem with
bacteria in the gut. So if you’re eating sugar,
you’re eating these CAFO meats, you’re going to be
causing that problem. That said, if you want to
have adequate testosterone production, it’s
really helpful to have some of these animal
fats in your diet, to have healthy membranes. Because the bottom
line is we actually aren’t made out of plants. Like, if you look around,
we are made out of animals because we are animals. We have a very long
history of eating animals. And I’ve looked a lot
at monoculture habitat destruction. And if you’ve ever
seen what a field of soybeans does to all
of the animals that are killed by tractors– KIP ANDERSEN: They’re
there to feed cows. I mean– DAVE ASPREY: I think vegetarians
eat soybeans last time I checked. KIP ANDERSEN: 90% of
all soy is fed to cows. DAVE ASPREY: Hey,
we’re all in agreement. Let’s not do that. Right? JOEL KAHN: Agree. DAVE ASPREY: But here’s the
deal, whatever plants you’re growing, keep in mind, I run
an organic farm with very high productivity per acre. Guess what plants eat? They eat dead animals. They eat poop. That’s what it does. So what we’re doing to
feed these vegan diets out there is we’re actually
mining minerals. We’re about to run out,
in 40 years, the stuff we use to make fertilizer. Or maybe we can get some from
natural gas and put it back in. But we are trashing
the soil to make what most vegans eat
because there aren’t that many organic vegans. Talk about– yeah, I know. It’s kind of funny
when science comes in. So what happens here is
literally bunnies, cute little bunnies, turtles,
mice, whole families, tractors just come
through and just take out their whole thing. You know, you’ve got
to think about that if you’re going to eat a
big grain bowl for lunch. Because the net deaths
per calories if I eat one grass-fed cow per year
is 0.7 deaths per year unless the cow stepped on
a frog in the front pasture of my farm. So what’s going on
here is that if you want take care of the
soil, you should have animals shitting on the soil. That’s how it works. JOEL KAHN: I thought we weren’t
allowed to use that word. DAVE ASPREY: Oops. [LAUGHTER] JOEL KAHN: I asked before
we started, if you can google a word, can we say it? And he said no. DAVE ASPREY: There’s an
environmental argument, and there’s the
study that shows it’s what’s going on your bacteria,
and also the fact that people feel better on moderate protein. One thing that’s terribly
missing from vegan diet is collagen, which is the
connective tissue that makes your joints. One of the things that makes my
joints not hurt any more, even though I thought your joints
were supposed to always hurt, is that your joints
are made of collagen, and I eat collagen again. And this comes from animals. There is no
plant-based collagen. So there’s a great
argument for this. I’ll also tell you
there’s a great argument for eating a lot
less grass-fed meat. You don’t need to
have a huge steak. The whole paleo thing,
where it’s all like, carnivore-based is not a
good way to live a long time. It’s a good way to get cancer. But moderate
amounts, particularly of animal fat and
some animal protein, will make you feel better. They’ll give you more energy. They’ll make you look younger. They’ll make you
live longer, and they feed the plants
the crap they need so we can stop destroying
large swaths of our environment and our soil to feed cows
that eat the wrong stuff or to feed people who eat
the wrong stuff, like grains. JESSE MICHAELS: OK. Let’s give Kip a
chance to respond. KIP ANDERSEN: So
that was hilarious. So, science grass-fed
beef, again and again, it’s about land use. You cannot have any other
animals share this land with you. Yes, it is true. DAVE ASPREY: I have a farm. KIP ANDERSEN: OK. OK. Actually, this is a great– How many acres are in your farm? DAVE ASPREY: I have 32 acres. KIP ANDERSEN: OK. So 32 acres, how many sheep? DAVE ASPREY: Right now, I have
a half-acre with three sheep. KIP ANDERSEN: A half-acre
with three sheep. DAVE ASPREY: And we rotate
them around so they– KIP ANDERSEN: So they eat lots
of grass, which is land use. So if we were to
take his 32 acres, and I was going veganic farming,
which is how “Cowspiracy” ends, I would blow away the production
with veganic composting and production, not only
by 10, but probably 30– if you have only three
sheep not so much– I’d grow around 10 times,
probably 5 to 10 times more food than you would. Because we just had a meme
on this on our “Cowspiracy.” We do it all the time. You have a funnel of food. A cow, for example, eats
around 35, 50, 100 pounds, depending on where it
is, of how much food. Day after day after day, it
drinks 25 gallons of water every single day. Add that up over 18 months,
and guess what you get? You funnel down, funnel
down, funnel down. You get some of that
goes back in the soil. At the end of the day,
the animal flesh you get is around 250, 300 pounds. Out of thousands and
thousands of food. So what it is, it’s
called inefficiency. And then the other question
too is, again, how efficient can you be in the– what was the last part? There’s one other
part about that. But I guess the goal is to be
as efficient as we can with– not all of us have 35 acres. If you want to break
it down to five acres, say we’re all given
five acres, you try putting one sheep on
that, and I’ll put mine, I’ll leave the sheep out,
and see who grows more. There’s not even a
remote comparison. And know what? I don’t have to kill the sheep. Can I film some time
you killing the sheep with your own bare hands? Can I film that? DAVE ASPREY: You can actually
film me taking it down on a bandsaw, because I
actually know how to do that. KIP ANDERSEN: I can film that? DAVE ASPREY: Sure
you can film that. As long as you take a
bite when we’re done. [LAUGHTER] JOEL KAHN: He won’t
TMAO if you do, though. All right. I just have a quick, just again,
we got to bounce back quick. Collagen is important. And this is obscure,
but it’s also you guys are young, healthy,
you want great skin, great hair, great nails, taking
biotin and all this stuff. You know, you don’t need
to eat animal collagen, because our human body makes
collagen. It’s a miracle. You need, however– this is an
interesting historical point, but it’s relevant today. There are only four
species on the planet don’t make collagen– Guinea pigs, bats,
gorillas, and humans. We’re the only four
mammals on the planet. My dog and my cat make
collagen. Humans can’t. We lost an enzyme in our liver. We are required– and Linus
Pauling, double Nobel Prize winner taught this in his
biochemistry research, we have to eat a
ton of vitamin C– tada, fruits and vegetables,
fruits, and vegetables. We need a ton of leucine,
which comes from the legumes primarily and almonds
to some degree. If you’re a plant-based
eater and you eat properly as the rainbow,
whole food, close to nature, minimally
processed diet, you make all the
collagen you need. There’s actually a very cool
sign, where your earlobe gets a crease, and it shows you’re
collagen weak and collagen deficient. It’s a marker of heart disease. It’s less common amongst
those that eat tons of plants. So you can make
collagen. You don’t have to eat animal collagen. You
don’t have to drink bone broth. You need to eat
healthy to maintain it. I will say I’m
rather proud of this because, again, as you’re
growing up in a world that’s going to be congested,
and dirtier, and more polluted, and more [INAUDIBLE],,
I can calculate it online in my 40 years of
being a plant eater, I’ve saved 15,000 animals and
16 million gallons of water. So when I have my
eulogy told, which I hope by that time will be
45,000 animals and 60,000 gallons of water that,
you know, each of us, if you know the story about
throwing a starfish back. You know, we can make one
little difference in the world. And you know, being sensitive
to your carbon footprint in every way, in your car, in
your bike, in your walking, but in your food, which is the
biggest segment of your carbon emission as a human
on the planet. You know, it can be just one
personal vote for sensitivity, humanity, and for doing good. And if we spread
that word, which Google can do probably better
than anybody out there, you know, we can
make a difference. Because air pollution is
choking your guys’ health off. You just had a fire up north
and you knew it firsthand, but these things are important. JESSE MICHAELS: OK. I want to move on. We can follow up with you
slaughtering a lamb for Kip. But we focused up until now on
kind of animal protein, fats, carbs sugar, sodium. I kind of want to just
do a little rapid fire and hear what they’re
good for and why you might think they’re bad,
either in excess or just generically. [LAUGHTER] We’ll also follow up with
your version of “War” by Edwin Starr. JOEL KAHN: They’re all
saying, what song is that? I know. I’m old. AUDIENCE: We know it. JOEL KAHN: Yes. Rock on. The wise people in the audience. JESSE MICHAELS: Go for it. DAVE ASPREY: So fats. Certain kinds of fats are great
for building cell membranes. Many other kinds of fats
are good for making energy because they have more
electrons in them than sugar or carbohydrates, and you want
high octane fuel in the body. And other fats are good
for causing inflammation, which is a problem. So different fats,
different things. Sugar, generally, you
don’t eat a lot of sugar, particularly fructose. It’s just not good for you. And we have abundant evidence
that it messes up your gut biome, which also then increases
your risk of heart disease, your risk of cancer,
and your risk of every other
degenerative disease ever, and it’ll make you
get hypergly-bitchy. It’s just bad news. The next one after
that was sodium. It turns out that
you’re probably not getting enough salt in
your diet right now. The more stressed you are,
the more salt you need. The current recommendations
from the government around salt intake
are actually so low that they raise
heart attack risk through an enzyme called renin. The Russian space program just
figured out some amazing things like if you a high salt diet,
you can eat 25% more calories without gaining weight. Not that you necessarily
want to do that. But I’ll tell you that
if you’re stressed, you’re not getting enough
sleep, you’re traveling a lot, you’re staying up late, you’re
getting bad light in your eyes, all the stuff that
increases biological stress, you’re in a bad
relationship, eat more salt if your body wants you to. But make it sea salt that
has balanced minerals in it versus industrial salt
that has aluminum in it, because you really
don’t want aluminum. JESSE MICHAELS: Carbs and sugar. JOEL KAHN: You did sugar. DAVE ASPREY: I did say sugar. But carbs, carbs in general,
I am not an anti-carb person. I’m an anti-sugar person. And I think the
right kinds of carbs that aren’t wrapped in mother
nature’s defense system is a useful thing to do. That’s what I’ll tell you white
rice is better than brown rice. People say, oh, brown
rice, but fiber. And they forget the
80 times more arsenic that’s in brown rice
versus white rice. The covering on grains triggers
all sorts of immune system problems in people. In fact, wheat has 26
different compounds you can be allergic to
that are not gluten. And we can test for those today. So these tend to trigger
problems in people. Can you survive a
famine on grain? Yes. Will you live with the highest
performance, best feeling life where you give the
most back to the world you have to give if you
eat a lot of whole grains? I don’t believe so. JESSE MICHAELS: Kip, Dr. Khan. KIP ANDERSEN: I’ll let him– I mean, he’s the MD. JOEL KAHN: Are you sure? OK. You got to remind me. So sugar. Small, medium amounts. But we’ve gone crazy with
sugar, and we eat too much. And of course, we should
always distinguish. We’re talking sugar
in fruit, go for it. 500,000 people just
studied out of China, first author their name Du. More sugar you eat,
the lower your chance of developing type 2
diabetes if it’s in fruit. And if you have
two type diabetes and you eat sugar in
fruit, you live longer. That’s totally different than
Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Mountain Dew, and Amp. So enjoy the sweet
of nature, but don’t add in the amazing amounts of
added sugar, refined sugar, of all types. Give me another. Carb? We have to be specific. Talking about refined
carbs as you’re going to find in pastries. One of the worst foods you can
eat in your life are pastries. That’s been known since
the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, ’80s. Perfect bomb of refined
flour, refined sugar, added, usually processed,
poor quality non-organic oils. Don’t eat donuts,
the number one food you’ll see at the
doctor’s office. Typically, don’t eat
processed pastries. Don’t eat you know Ding Dongs
and HoHos and all the rest. You know, we’re talking
carbs like a bean carbs, like a squash, carbs like
a piece of lettuce, which all food is a combination
of fat, carbs, and protein to some extent. Go for it in my world. And then give me another. JESSE MICHAELS: Sodium. JOEL KAHN: Sodium. If you’re a tribesman in South
America called the Yanamamo, you need a few hundred
milligrams of sodium a day. Current recommendations
now are 1,500 to 2000. Your average blood
pressure is around 100. The number one killer in
the world is hypertension. Number one killer in the
world according to a study called the Global Burden
of Disease Studies. Because again, it’s
everything in excess. Americans are eating
too much of everything. Too much refined sugar. Too much refined flour. Too much refined salt. Too many
refined and poor quality fats. I’m fine with whole food fats. I agree, there’s
populations that eat high percentage of
fats and are healthy. There’s populations like Okinawa
and this tribe in the Bolivian called the Chimane, they
eat very little fat, and they’re healthy, but
don’t eat the refined crap. So I’m more towards
a low salt diet, recognizing this
number one killer. And was there one more? Are we done? JESSE MICHAELS: No, we’re done. JOEL KAHN: OK, good. KIP ANDERSEN: The
only thing I’ll add to that is just, again, kind
of personal experimentation. I used to do marathons
being vegetarian. I was a hardcore cheese-aholic. And I really thought
protein, because I ate eggs and cheese, and then
just with “What the Health?”, there was going to impart
more of the story arc with me. It was the first time I did
a full marathon being vegan. And then I purposely never
owned a bike or swam on a lap in my life, and I wanted
to train for an Ironman within 90 days. And by doing nothing
different, other than– this brings in of carb– I did carb overloading. Carb loading, and
then getting rid of all those
inflammatory things, like dairy, especially,
and eggs and protein, I increased my
training half the time. I bettered my marathon
by 23 minutes. And then I did the Ironman– I’ve never done
this– within 90 days. And that was mainly
a lot from carbs. That’s my experience with carbs. So it’s maybe not all the times. I don’t do that now. But I think there’s a
time and place, not only like, who you are, but what
are you doing at this time? Are you trying to build muscle? Are you a long distance
runner like Rich Roll? Most of the ultra
endurance runners, they’re mostly
vegan, if not 100%, they’re getting more and
more, so I guess it depends. JOEL KAHN: They’re
renaming the NBA the NVA because so many players
have gone vegan this month. OK. Don’t announce it yet. It’s just something
want to give you guys a chance to kind of
disintermediate yourselves, meaning that you guys, you
know, believe certain things, and you guys all have platforms,
and people believe you when you speak about these things. JOEL KAHN: I have a
pro-erection platform. I wanna just put
it right out there. [LAUGHTER] Sorry. JESSE MICHAELS:
But I’d love to get kind of your process
and your sources. We hear a lot of terms like peer
reviewed, like meta studies. Where should we look? You mentioned PubMed. How should we look
at these things? How do we look at
them for ourselves? Can you empower us? DAVE ASPREY: Well,
we’re here at Google. And we went through
this long period of time where you had to go to a
guy in a white lab coat or “Reader’s Digest.” Those are your two
sources of information. JOEL KAHN:
“Prevention” magazine. DAVE ASPREY: Right. And so we really didn’t
have the ability to do this. You guys remember
microfiche readers? Like, when I was
in seventh grade, we had to go look up like,
these incredibly stupid ways of finding stuff. So everything was hidden. And you could never find
a million other people doing what you do to find
something that works. And we’ve solved that problem
over the last 20 years, and Google’s been one of the
biggest companies to do that. So there’s two places to go. One is you can look at PubMed. You can find almost
any academic research ever about the specific thing
that you’re looking for. And the second thing to
do is find other people who are doing something
similar or trying to solve the problem you want to solve. Biohacking is the
art and science of changing the environment
around you and inside of you so you have full control
of your own biology. So if your job is
to get swole, you’re going to talk to people
who are doing that. And if your job is
to live past 180, you’re going to talk to
people who are doing that. But you can find
these communities. And then you find
these amazing things that should not be possible
if the dogma is true. And that’s what happened to me. I did the vegan thing. I did the excessive exercise
thing, and it didn’t work. And I found, wow, there’s all
these anti-aging people who meet 10 minutes from Google
and have for 25 years. I’m chairman of this group now. They’re looking at these things. They’re studying, will it work? And yes, we talk with vegans. We talk with non-vegans. Begins We bring them
in for lectures. But the bottom line
is community is what’s going to help you the
most, because the community has the power to go out and
do the searching for you and to bring up
interesting things. Well, wait, how can this paper
exist if we all believe this? I’m going to run an experiment. And if you find that
your life was radically different after doing that,
there is truth in that, because the number one part
of the scientific method is observation. And then you can
form a hypothesis, and then you can test it. You have a community. You can test it now that’s
never existed before. And that is the most
amazing thing right now. JESSE MICHAELS: Kip? KIP ANDERSEN: Wanna go first? JOEL KAHN: I would
say you go to PubMed. You know, P-U-B-M-E-D dot com. Some of you may have been there. So of you may not. The National
Library of Medicine, 26 million medical articles. Different than a blog. Different than a newspaper. But a tremendous
range of quality. Negative studies often
don’t get published. You do a study that grass-fed
beef does or doesn’t do something, and it’s negative,
you’re unlikely to publish it. It may damage your chances
of getting further grants. Egg board, dairy
board, meat board. There is a green board,
a broccoli board. I mean, they don’t
have any money. But you do need to read. The first place I go usually
is the end of article, where was the funding from? And that’s true at the Harvard
School of Public Health, and that’s true overseas. And sometimes,
it’s not disclosed. And with all that muck, that’s
where you go, nonetheless. We have 110 years of studies on
nutrition and atherosclerosis. Somewhere amongst that, we can
come to that core, you know, eat minimally processed,
mainly close to the ground, and largely plants as
a rallying point that is likely to favor your
health and prevent disease. And yes, there’s
inconsistencies, and there’s
disappointments when we learn that three guys
at Harvard in the 1960s took some money to favor
the idea that sugar was bad for your health
and not disclose that. But that’s three researchers
in 50 years in all. So we’re doing OK
with medical science. There’s people that really
care and really are ethical. Not everybody’s in a bad
place, so I trust science. I really do. KIP ANDERSEN: What’s
happened, especially after the film comes
out, people have these articles that come out. And eventually,
we’re going to get ready to do one specifically
that goes over each point, because they’re very easy
to refute the rebuttals. And a lot of them– I was just on “Doctors,” and
they’re all attacking us, and they’re literally quoting
studies for the egg industry that’s put out by
the egg industry. And this happens
time and time again, where they have these studies
that they’re refuting. They’re like, what about this? What about this? And it’s like, did you
actually see the film? This is a huge part of the film. Follow the money. Follow who it went to. Don’t look at things at
face value, surface level. You have to go deeper,
deeper, deeper, deeper. And that’s what the film did. And I think it was
kind of sidetracked, but “Cowspiracy” just a few
years ago, a lot of the facts were refuted then, and I
learned a lot from that. Just in two, three years fr
now, everything pretty much in that entire film is common
knowledge for the most part. And the same with
“What the Health?” And looking back in history,
10, 20, 30 years from now, there’s one way this can go. And this one way is
the plant-based diet, not only for again,
for the planet, for your health,
mind, body, and spirit is the way to go, and to search
through these murky studies and find the ones that
are truly independent. And again, I guess
brought up again, rather than like biohacking,
really bioharmonizing yourself with the planet, not to have
everything come towards you and fix me, myself. How about, how can I integrate
myself with the entire planet so I’m at one with
it, and so I feel liberated because of a
much bigger self than just my own self? And I think that’s the goal too. It’s 7 billion people,
and how do we all fit in? What can I do to become part
of the greater whole of us? JESSE MICHAELS: I wanna get
questions from the audience. Does anybody have any questions? JOEL KAHN: Don’t be shy. Good, good, good. AUDIENCE: What are your
thoughts on the supposed estrogenic effects of soy? JOEL KAHN: I’ll jump
in as a medical doctor. I personally think that eating–
well, I don’t personally think. The science says if you eat
organic soy in place of meat, you favor the chance
you won’t develop breast cancer for women. And if you’ve had breast cancer,
you won’t develop recurrence of breast cancer, because
there’s natural estrogen. And the very, very weak activity
that’s in plant-based estrogen like the soybean– and only organic, because
thank you Monsanto, we’ve largely destroyed that
crap in terms of quality. But it’s out there. Your soy milk I noticed
in your coffee shops are Pacific brand, organic soy. it’s a good choice. But so to replace– again, CAFO, where they’re
administering extra hormones to get that chicken to grow
fast, that cow to grow fast, make more money. You’re better off by far eating
soy than that type of food. You get into higher quality,
there’s no head to head study. Soy is a very safe food if
you don’t have a food allergy or food intolerance. I wouldn’t eat it
three meals a day. It can have something that’s
called goitergenic thyroid interacting effects. But you don’t see that in
natural populations in Japan. I mean, it’s a condiment
to your stir fry and the rest of your diet. KIP ANDERSEN: This
is the one thing– you know, we wanted to
make our film 90 minutes, and was the last
thing we cut out. And I was like, oh god, someday
we’ll do a director’s cut. Because that was a huge
marketing, essentially– again, by theory, not 100%. Well, we do know it was put
out by the Weston Price. And this big scare, right when
soy milk started taking off, and cow milk started going
down, all of a sudden this thing came out. Soy is bad because of,
ironically, estrogen. What is in cow’s milk? Its growth hormone fluids. Whether it’s
organic or not, it’s supposed to make a small calf
grow into a big, thousand pound cow as fast as it possibly can. So it’s so ironic,
because they’re saying it’s about the estrogen part. It’s phytoestrogen.
When the real concern is the estrogen and the
growth hormones from cow’s milk and cheese and dairy. That’s the one that you
have to be worried about. And that was what? 25, 30 years ago. I’ve been vegan 10 years. For four years, I did not
eat soy because of that. And then I found out it it was
put out by the Weston Price, and it’s like, thank God. And it’s very true. If you do eat soy,
organic, that is one thing, because it
is heavily pesticide. But soy is incredibly
good for you, and there’s study after
study after study on that. And I’m bummed we put that out,
because that was a big thing. JOEL KAHN: On the other hand. [LAUGHTER] DAVE ASPREY: My wife
is a medical doctor from the Karolinska
Institute in Stockholm. When I met her,
she drank soy milk. She was infertile. My very first book was
how to turn fertility back on with 1,300 studies on it. When we took her
off soy milk, she was able to gain
weight that she’d been unable to gain her entire
adult life drinking soy milk. Soy contains phytic acid,
which inhibits your ability to absorb minerals from the
other vegetables you might eat. So if you want to eat
soy, you should pair it with a nice piece
of grass-fed steak. JOEL KAHN: But you
won’t get colon cancer, because we know phytates
resist the development of colon cancer. So you pick your choice. DAVE ASPREY: The point
there also about soy, aside from the estrogenic
effects, which are present. And the estrogen that’s in soy
doesn’t fit in your estrogen receptors properly, so it
basically clogs them up so your own natural estrogen
activities don’t work. You can use soy, for instance,
at certain times of the month to help with PMS symptoms
because it has an effect. But to take it sort
of all willynilly, I am highly skeptical of
that being a good choice. The other problem is
that fermented soy is the second highest histamine
food after fermented fish sauce. Histamine is actually
a neurotransmitter. It also causes allergies
and things like that. So there are lots of people
who go on the Bulletproof Diet, and I’m like hey,
maybe you should stop eating even the gluten-free
soy sauce for a little while and see what happens. And what happens is, I
don’t get hives anymore. So if you eat soy and you
get some brain fog later in the day, you get
profoundly tired, it may not be
estrogen. It may be one of the other many
problems with soy, aside from the environmental
destruction caused by mowing down beautiful fields
and forests to plant soybeans to feed people low-quality crap. JOEL KAHN: You don’t eat natto? Fermented natto is
not on your diet. DAVE ASPREY: No, natto is
actually the one form of soy that I do recommend. JESSE MICHAELS: We’ve got
one question in the back. I can repeat the question. AUDIENCE: Just to
alleviate the situation, this question’s not about soy. [LAUGHTER] DAVE ASPREY: Darn. AUDIENCE: A huge thanks for Kip
because your films definitely changed my and my
girlfriend’s life. So as a vegan or
vegetarian, you definitely have a situation you’re
with your friends, and suddenly your friend
becomes a plant activist. And I was wondering, in
this kind of situation, how do you usually go
about it and can you share your experience of
friends who eat lots of meat and they got irritated about– KIP ANDERSEN: What was
the first part of that? JOEL KAHN: Their
friends become activist. JESSE MICHAELS: The question
is around social situations where– he was
influenced by your film. He went vegan. Maybe you’re at the
dinner table and you have to explain that to meat eaters. [INTERPOSING VOICES] KIP ANDERSEN: Well, I went
vegan, because part of it was health. Health was the last part. What’s interesting,
I used to never go to barbecues, especially
in the first years of when I was vegan, because
everybody does these very immature things,
kind of like, where you say, oh, if you’re gonna
eat animals, I’m gonna eat two times animals. Or the whole soy thing,
and this and that. And then, especially
with the animals, I’m gonna eat three
times as many animals. Every time, it’s such a thing. If you tell someone to not
eat sugar, that’s like, well, you know, it’s
interesting stuff. But if you tell someone
to not eat animals because of certain things, it
triggers someone back, and these immature things around
when they’re 8 to 12 years old. And that is when we become
jaded to that animal as another living
being, of exactly that you would never
in a million years, if you’re 12 years old, look a
cow, look a sheep, in the eye and slit his throat. So it’s beyond– it’s a whole
other level of betrayal, not only within yourself,
but you’re saying, wow, are you saying I’m not in line
with who truly morally am? And that’s a deep question
not only for yourself. Are you saying my parents
are bad because they fed me this way, or my culture’s bad? So it’s a very deep thing. That’s why it’s such
a sensitive topic because at the core level,
human beings are compassionate, loving beings. And that’s why at
the core level, whether 5%, 10% of the
core of who we are inside, we’re frugivores. We’re meant to love other
beings and all of the planet’s other life forms. And that’s the big
reason why we’re in the situation where
we are, because we’ve gone away from that. So the only thing
I say is people is the reason why I made
these films is just hey, watch this funny film
called “Cowspiracy,” or this comedy called
“What the Health?” And you know, I mean, that’s all
you can do, is try to educate. Because it is hard, because
it’s such a deep-lying seeded contradictory with
their own selves. DAVE ASPREY: There’s
something that happens any time you go on a new diet. And this happened
when I was raw vegan. It happened when I discovered
like Atkins in the early ’90s. Like, all right. Like, lost half this
fat, and the other half won’t budge on that diet,
and things like that. You go through this like, oh,
my god, I have the solution, and I feel a moral
obligation to tell everyone. But the real moral
obligation you have, whether you’re like,
a radical keto dieter– like that’s the latest like,
you know, carb shaming, or the vegan side of things,
where, OK, this is it. Like, this is what’s
working for me right now. The best thing you
can do, no matter what your diet is, and you
just discovered it, is shut up and eat. JOEL KAHN: I agree. DAVE ASPREY: And
when you do that, the people who are
open to learning will ask you why you’re
doing what you’re doing, and you’ll have the best
conversations of your life. And if instead you’re
like, I’m going to tell you why I’m
doing what I’m doing, people are like, could
you, you know, STFU. Like, we’re not here for that. We want to do what
we’re going to do. So my path over the last 20
years of discovering this stuff has been to learn that,
look, when I’m eating, I don’t judge other
people for what they eat. Like, I’m assuming
they’re doing it. If they want to know why
I’m doing what I’m doing, I’ll tell them, but I
never offer it first. And given that I’m well-known
now, they usually ask. But even back when I was
doing what I was doing like, why, you’re working at a
computer security company. Like, why did you carry a stick
of butter to lunch with you? Right? I’m like, OK. Now it’s an opening. Right? And so if you just
politely order the plant-based diet
that you want to order and you eat it without
emotion and without judgment, you’ll find that you’ll
have the best conversations, and you’ll probably
swing the people who are your target, the
ones who are open versus angering the ones who
are not open and are really not your target. KIP ANDERSEN: I agree 100%. Now, I actually
go to a barbecues. I don’t say anything. I used to say something. In the first couple of
years, so passionate. And now I don’t say anything,
and it kind of comes to you, or they’ll ask
something exactly. So again, whatever you do. And just kind of
like, lead by example and really be present,
but don’t say anything. So now I purposely go to
barbecues, and just my presence there, like bringing a veggie
burger, the new Beyond Burger. Having that there. Then you’re like, it’s
a little minimal form of passive activism. And I don’t say anything. You know, if they come to me. But it’s very true. Very true. Because it does not work. I tried for 10 years. It doesn’t work. DAVE ASPREY: Like,
I go to barbecues. I don’t eat the barbecue. I’m like, well, it’s
probably fed a bunch of crap. Like, it’s not
good quality meat. And you shouldn’t burn
your meat on open fire. I can show you all
the science for that. So, it’s like, I’ll
have the salad. And when I go out to eat,
I’d go to Joel’s restaurant. I’ll go to a vegan
restaurant because you’re going to get less crap, as
long as you throw away the tofu and stuff, at a vegan
restaurant than you are at the typical American
feedlot restaurant. But just by making those
choices, and then saying, I’m going to do this not that,
and you can say it’s about me. It’s about what works for
my biology, and it’s OK. You can eat whatever
you want to eat, but we can just have a really
like, productive dialogue versus like, shaming. JESSE MICHAELS: I think on
that, two more questions, although that was very
nice olive branch. Yes, Erica? AUDIENCE: So then,
for those of us that can’t cook for
every meal, let’s say we’re going out for
our birthday dinner or going out to a
restaurant, what is going to the safest
thing at a restaurant, then, that isn’t like, plant-based. Or you’re going
out with a group, you want to kind of be easy. JOEL KAHN: I’ve been
eating in restaurants– JESSE MICHAELS: Dr.
Khan, Let me just repeat the question real
quick for the listeners out there, viewers out there. So it’s basically, you’re
in a group situation, you’re going to a restaurant. Maybe they ask you about
dietary restrictions. Maybe they don’t. You want to kind of be
easy and eat with them. How do you do that while
adhering to the healthiest diet possible? Dr. Kahn? JOEL KAHN: Just quickly,
there’s an amazing website been around 20 years,, if you’re looking for that
healthy restaurant, whether you’re in Moscow,
St. Petersburg, Istanbul, or Mountain View. So that’s a great resource
when you’re out of town. It’s, as far as I
know, noncommercial. Maybe it’ will list
every whole food, or list every similar
market and restaurant. Two, is I go right– if I’m in an Italian
restaurant, the contorni, you know, the side dishes. I put together
spinach, root garlic, with a braised
grilled cauliflower. Whatever it is. That’s a nice safe place to go. And ask questions. Food allergies are
everywhere, so it’s not at all odd to even the chef
to come out of the kitchen. I do own a large
restaurant in Detroit besides being a cardiologist. I mean, that should be
encouraged because nut allergies are life-threatening. So get the food you want
out of a restaurant. And if you got to
tell your friends, I’m doing the Beyonce diet,
or doing the NBA diet, or I’ve developed
whatever allergy– I mean, allergies
everybody respects nowadays if you don’t want to go
into the whole conversation. DAVE ASPREY: I always
just go in and I say, I want a plate
covered in vegetables. And I go, actually, guys, I
mean covered in vegetables. That doesn’t mean three
pieces of asparagus. Right? And then, they’re like, really? Like, no, I mean that. And then I’ll look on the menu. If there’s a wild
caught fish, I’ll do it. And yes, I’m concerned
about overfishing. I’m also concerned about eating. And I’m hoping that we’ll
do some more work on that. But in the meantime, if you just
get the plate of vegetables, here’s the trick. They always put canola oil
in almost every restaurant, and they tell you
it’s olive oil, because they cut the
olive oil with canola. You tell them it has
to 100% olive oil, because if I get canola
oil, I have seizures right there on the floor. And then you always
get the real oil. JOEL KAHN: That
actually is true. DAVE ASPREY: Yeah, and
for me, I just say, could you cook it in butter? JOEL KAHN: He won’t
have a seizure. But if you say that,
they will be very careful not to put what you don’t want. DAVE ASPREY: Otherwise,
most well-meaning waiters and waitresses will
give you bad fats because they don’t know it. And oftentimes, the
cook doesn’t even know until they turn the big
jug of industrial oil around. Oh, yeah. It is 25% canola. I didn’t know. So just avoiding bad fats
is critically important if you want to feel good. But literally, you can always
say a plate of vegetables. And that’s enough. Right? I bring my own fat to
pour on the vegetables to get enough fat to feel good. But maybe you do
that, maybe you don’t. That’s the trick. Only vegetables. And if they’re feeding
industrial meat, I’m right with these guys. Don’t eat industrial meat. Like, it will take away
years from your life, and it’s bad for the planet. And that said, if you can get
a little bit of good quality protein, do it. If not get some
protein once a day that’s really high quality
protein, which probably didn’t come from vegetables. JESSE MICHAELS: Anybody else? Go for it. AUDIENCE: Yeah, thanks a lot
for talking about the big issues like how we can
harmonize with life, and how we can
listen to science. Dr. Kahn, I wanted to
ask if you could give us a little more recommendations
than just going to PubMed. That’s such an open-ended thing. I’m particularly thinking of
like, Dr. Greger’s website or other consolidated
sources where we don’t have to figure
it all out on our own. JESSE MICHAELS: Question as, is
other verified medical sources outside of just
PubMed, Dr. Kahn. JOEL KAHN: Yeah. It brings up a little
bit of a sensitive issue. Can a doctor who
chooses a plant diet, a vegan diet not be objective? And I’ve already declared it. When I see that meat
will reverse my patients heart blockage, I will be
obligated to recommend meat. Just that science doesn’t exist. The only diet for
atherosclerosis reversal are plant diets, naturally
low in added fats and oils. And until that changes,
that’s what I’ll recommend. So there is a website, I don’t think that
would be received well in the ketogenic diet
and some other movement.s but if you watch
“What the Health?” and you’re looking for
some more information, yes, that’s always
a recommendation. Where else would you
go if you want some– because I really do
like Dr. Greger’s work, because the medical
references are there. And you can search for others. There usually aren’t others. These are the ones that exist. I don’t think he’s got a bias. It’s just the way
the literature goes., Physician Committee
of Responsible Medicine, there’s a lot websites. So if you get into the
plant-based movement, I mean, there’s all
kinds of websites. But they’re basing
their website usually on science that’s in PubMeds. KIP ANDERSEN: Highly, highly
recommend for something simple. It’s a video. It’s always very fast,
always sourced very well. You can type in
anything, anything, and it’ll come out in a very
succinct, two-three minute way, Sourced, sourced, sourced. It’s a great, great resource. JESSE MICHAELS: Cool. Thank you guys so
much for coming. Really appreciate it. Let’s give it up for them. [APPLAUSE]

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