Episode 187

Performance Menu: Journal of Health & Athletic Excellence

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Featuring guest Dr. Kirk Parsley

Lifewellness Institute in San Diego

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Categories: Podcasts


Robb Wolf’s 30 Day Paleo Transformation

Have you heard about the Paleo diet and were curious about how to get started? Or maybe you’ve been trying Paleo for a while but have questions or aren’t sure what the right exercise program is for you? Or maybe you just want a 30-day meal plan and shopping list to make things easier? Then Robb Wolf’s 30 Day Paleo Transformation is for you.


  1. B. Wildered says

    Would love to listen to this podcast, however there’s nothing at the link. There are no podcasts whatsoever listed at iTunes, either; is it now subscription only?

  2. Mary says

    Hello Robb,

    Wanted to give you an idea about the future of the podcast. You are right, it does get repetitive (eat right, sleep well, exercise, go see a functional medicine doc). I think the problem is that as you both point out, to really know what is going on in a certain case it’s necessary to get blood work and follow that up with someone who knows what they are doing. Unlike lots of people out there, you don’t try to over-simplify stuff and spin in a certain direction for profit. You give your genuine, honest take on stuff and tell it like it is–and that is why everyone likes you so much–but it’s also why your responses to all the “unique snowflake” situations are repetitive.

    So, for all the people who have enough funds to see a functional medicine doc for weeks/months of follow-up plus the cost of the labs and treatments, perhaps the podcast is not really needed. However, there are lots of people who simply do not have the money for that, but still want to make improvements and just learn more. So, what about having some “unique snowflake” podcasts where you go into depth on certain people’s situations (people who you could even talk with on the show) that you could then follow-up on based on blood work/interventions that these people did with the help of a functional medical doctor?

    So for example, you take one guy who has a major adrenal wreckage situation (or someone diagnosed with CFS) and you go into depth on it a few different times–following up what bloodwork showed and what interventions were used and what the results were.

    There are probably legal constraints with something like this (not allowed to offer medical advice, etc.) but if there was a way around that it would be more interesting for the listeners, because we might be really able to learn more about what the complexities/interrelations are and how they can be dealt with rather than just hearing “oh, it’s so complex and interrelated–you need a functional medicine doc for that” (which of course is particularly frustrating to hear over and over again when there is no way you can consult such a doctor for yourself).

      • Christopher says

        I like that idea too. As long as there was a disclaimer given, the person gave consent, etc. I think it could potentially be done? Especially if we had a practitioner on the show like Doc Parsley for these episodes. Having the patient on to discuss issues and results for more details could be good too.

      • Casey says

        I love this idea. If you had a podcast on a health issue and gave a quick 10 min overview with a doctor and then interview a few real life case examples detailing their successful treatment that would be incredibly useful for anyone struggling with that issue.

      • Meg94 says

        Robb, as I was listening I was thinking an in depth interview with a success story, unique snowflake, would be great. Also a podcast on what one should do to get ready for an appointment with a functional medical doc. It’s an investment. My husband have budgeted for a visit and blood work and follow ups, but what should we be tracking and paying attention to while we search for a Doctor.

        I’m 42, adopted, so I have no medical history. I’ve spent the last 4 years changing my habits and with Weight Watchers lost 100. Still have 60-80 to go. We read your book last year and further cleaned up our eating. I’d say 80% Paleo would be the average a month. Working on making sleep a focus. I feel it’s time to get some medical input on what is or is not working right internally.

        So a podcast on how to make the most out of a Dr visit would be interesting.

        Going Paleo reduced my lower back arthritis pain by 95%. THANK YOU!

    • says

      Mary pipped me to the post (insert laughter). I think the valuable thing about the podcast is that it keeps us paleoites on point, a fun reminder each week about what we should be doing. If you have clients who are willing to be interviewed for a short period (10 mins) over the course of say a month then maybe we can learn anecdotally about stuff they’ve experienced that worked/failed. It would also be interesting to hear how Robb interacts with the different(and I’m sure sometimes difficult) personalities of his clients.

  3. Mary says

    Hi again Robb,

    Also, here’s a radical idea that you will probably totally hate but I’m going to throw it out anyway: have you considered breaking things up into two separate podcasts?

    I think you have a really diverse audience at this point. At one end of the spectrum you’ve got young, jacked guys (and gals) into Olympic lifting, MMA, jiujitsu (and other fun stuff that I wish I knew existed when I was young and crazy).

    At the other end, you’ve got much older people with chronic health issues who are mostly interested in diet/supplements, understanding lab values and what to do in the gym as a minimum to retain some muscle/mobility. Yes, this is a spectrum (lots of folks in between, lots of overlap, etc.) but still, if you had two separate podcasts–one with Greg, and one with Kirk Parsley or someone similar, each one going up on alternate weeks–then some people might be happier (especially Greg, because you would only be prevailing on him once every two weeks and he would have more time to work on his DVD project that will not make him any money!).

      • Christopher says

        If people were interested in having it more split up, having two different podcasts is one option. I could also group the questions together even more and have them split into two different sections in one podcast that cater more to each audience?

        • Val says

          I love the idea of grouping up the questions by type. I’m not sure you need two different podcasts entirely, but maybe alternating types of questions every week: one week it’s training questions, the next week nutrition/special snowflake medical questions.

          Another idea is to better filter the questions that come in. Not that Squatchy’s not doing an awesome job (you are!), but that might help reduce the frequency of similar or previously-answered questions. It would take a bit of programming, setting up the podcast question form to have more fields that’d take the user through some basic filtering (the same questions that’re on your current flow charts would be an awesome start), and then only letting them submit questions if they make it through the filter. That might reduce the burden on Squatchy a bit. 😉

          If you felt _really_ fancy, you could use keywords from the form’s output, and then suggest previous podcasts where the topic’s already been covered. e.g., if someone’s submitting a question about sleep, they’d be referred to a list of podcasts and blog posts tagged with ‘sleep’.

          In a perfect world, people would do these searches on their own before they submit a question, but since that doesn’t seem to be happening, they apparently need some forcing.

          • Christopher says

            That would be nice to set up a form/program to automate that more, but that would be tricky to do. I suppose it could direct people to previously covered topics, and then they could choose whether to submit their question or not based on if they thought it was unique/new.

            Currently I do most of what you mentioned myself, and I usually always go back and make sure the topic wasn’t previously covered. I may occasionally bring back a really old topic if I feel it may need updating with more current info.

  4. Long time listener says

    I’m an on-again, off-again listener and I agree with Mary on both points.

    BTW thanks for squeezing in the “do I workout after insomnia?” question at the end!

  5. MichelleJ says


    I hear where you are coming from–please know that your podcast is much appreciated and needed! I’ve gotten so much out of both the individual sessions and the evolution of the podcast as a whole as we learn and grow.

    I think part of your frustration would come from the hordes of us adrenally challenged out here who are flocking to you for help. I’m one of them and have been on this roller coaster for almost three years. You’ve helped a ton but as you well know there are many facets to this issue and each day is different.

    How about an ‘if this, then try this’ section? Using myself as an example, I’ve been advised to up my carbs to help heal the adrenals. Well I’ve put on weight consistently and have been in what I now figure is hypo/hyperglycemic loop leaving me with unpredictable energy. What does seem to be working is a ketogenic approach ala Perfect Health diet with about 50g of Paleo carbs. Lowering the protein has helped a lot.

    Supplements don’t touch my energy as much as nutrition and it’s taken me a long time to n=1 this out and to understand why something is working in order to duplicate it. From you a “if this, then try this” based on perhaps some case studies as suggested earlier would be very helpful.

    I’m working with Chris Kresser and with EvaT (who is awesome!!) and my PPN doc locally so I’ve got some great people in my corner. Ironing out the nutrition and lifestyle has been a trick and a half.

    I also love the divided podcast idea. Knowing when to expect training shenanigans and when to get ready to dive into complex issues would be great.

    Thank you for all that you do and don’t even think about not doing the podcast!


  6. Beng Hwee says

    Hey Squatchy. You have done an excellent job; I particularly liked the questions you had chosen to pick the brains of Robb and Greg. No worries on the blip :)

  7. Kara says

    Please continue with the podcast!
    Your message needs to be heard not only by the existing paleoites to remind us of the basics, encourage us along our way and confirm that the non conventional life we lead is valid but your message is also valuable for the newbie and as yet to be paleoites! There are a variety of various listeners so there needs to be a variety of various speakers of the Paleo message and your presentation is one of the best if not the best.
    Who knew that a 61 year old female non gym rat would be an avid listener of your podcast? You and Greg educate, entertain and inspire me every podcast. Evolve and adapt as needed but continue please!

  8. Will says

    Robb – to answer a lingering question you may have on whether the podcast is still beneficial despite frequently giving the same advice, absolutely yes.

    I find significant benefit in hearing about other people’s health issues that I previously had not heard off. The new knowledge gained on each of these often gives me a tidbit of applicable information I previously didn’t have.

  9. Jim says

    Keep them coming, ya it’s the same old chop wood carry water at times. But if you listen back say 30-40 episodes things change. Vit D for example. You & Kresser & Greg all have new books coming out. So either there’s new stuff to talk about or your books are gonna be real boring. Keep up the stoke cheers Jim

  10. Minerva says

    The podcast is still very valuable–I think having topics for each podcast would be great, so that you are diving into topics instead of dancing around. I thought this most recent podcast was amazing, one of the best yet.

    Also, may I advocate for a podcast episode dedicated solely to questions from women..say once a month? I am so interested in human growth hormone and testosterone levels and what is optimal for adult female athletes (like myself), and there is such a dearth of info about it on the interwebs…because most fitness outlets think women just want to be as skinny as possible. Your perspective is immensely informative. Keep it up!

  11. BrendaB says

    I love the podcast too and have learned so much from them. I even refer back to them when I want to be reminded of something or look up some condition you gave an opinion on. I agree with the split show / alternating weeks too. And I’m in the second camp, an older (53 yr old) female who gave CrossFit a try before I became a listener. Still trying to make Paleo a lifestyle and your podcasts are motivating. There are some of us who need the listen, rinse, and repeat. Thank you!

  12. Adrian schilling says

    I think more relevant interviews instead of question and answer. Maybe more like the controversial truth podcast. Have one question and answer podcast a month with detailed questions. And find interviews that open into other fields or points of views. Expanding into other areas of lifestyle and social connectivity. There are so many people doing off shoot work now that can bring more numbers into the sphere.

  13. Geoff says

    Another great episode – love Doc Parsley!

    For a future show why don’t you do a replay of your Bunny Ranch talk? Or record it live from Carson City? Ha ha.

    Seriously, though for the future of the podcast, Robb, have you thought about whether you still really enjoy doing it? Is it fun for you and Greg? It’s great that you want to hear our views on the podcast’s value, but really you ought to do whatever it is that fulfills you. Maybe it’s time to just say “F” it and do what you love.

      • Geoff says

        If you enjoy it, then party on, Robb. Just keep it real – do what YOU want to do, not what you think we want or need to hear.

  14. Joe K says

    It was really interesting hearing Dr. Parsley discuss the use of I think he called it a “thyroid taper”. I take this to mean, going on thyroid hormone replacement to allow the thyroid to rest for a bit, then tapering off so it gradually picks up the slack again?

    Would have been interesting to hear more lab numbers so we can get an idea of the “functional” range rather then what MDs tell us, especially here in the UK where all our lab ranges and treatments seem about 20 years behind.

    My TSH seems to always be 2.5 to 6.24, despite free T4/free T3/ Rt3/ antibodies always looking ok. I wonder if my thyroid is struggling to keep up and needs a break, thus why i’ve been fatigued and foggy for months. Am seriously considering suggesting this taper method to my doc if I can find more details?

  15. Your podcasts are life savers says

    Please continue the podcasts. I have listened to them all during my commute and while training or relaxing.
    Podcasts have supported me during my way to health with thyroid, adrenal, women’s hormonal and stress issues due to work and financial problems.
    I would suggest a continuous review of laboratory and medical services which are low cost. Especially the new companies like Talking20.

  16. Heidi says

    I am so happy to read that you enjoy doing the podcast as it is a great contribution to so many people’s efforts to improve their health. I really enjoy listening and you are all doing a fantastic service by sharing your knowledge.
    It would also be interesting to hear your conversations with people from different occupations that touch on this lifestyle or your opinion of different therapies as truly effective or not. I know that could become dangerous territory! Naturopath, homeopath, acupuncturist, sophrologist for examples. I think a lot of listeners like myself may not understand what some of these therapies really involve. Some people that become paleo might feel the desire to change fields and there are sure to be many different ways to help people that few of us have heard of?
    Thanks for the many hours of learning and entertainment!

  17. Unique, Metabolically deranged, SnowFlake says

    I love the Paleo Solutions podcast. At worst, the episodes are merely delightfully entertaining. Often they provide excellent information (while still being delightfully entertaining).

    I agree about their being two populations. I’m in the unique snowflake seemingly metabolically broken camp. I find the time you spend talking about things geared more for the “jacked” listeners very entertaining and often at least theoretically interesting (and occasionally applicable to my situation).

    I guess the thing about some of us “snowflakes” is that adopting a paleo diet/sleeping well/exercise (to the best of our abilities)/and seeking out the most qualified doctors/practitioners that we can find/etc – although helpful is not always sufficient to solve our health issues and metabolic derangement. I think sometimes there is an underlying issue or root cause undermining the situation that our doctors/practitioners fail to find.

    Causation is a tricky thing. In the process of trying to find the cause of my metabolic issues, I recently had my 23andme test done and ran my data though the genetic genie site and discovered that I have some MTHFR/Methylation cycle genetic defects. I understand that such defects are not extremely rare and can be the cause of some nasty things – I am not sure if metabolic derangement is one of the possible effects or not. I rather hope that it is because it seems like I have to deal with this Methylation stuff now regardless and I’m not sure that I could deal with finding out another thing that is wrong with me that is the cause that I was actually looking for.

    I guess my point is I think there are some possible underlying causes of issues that probably not enough people know about. I think one possible direction that you could take the podcast in would be to dedicate more time to making people aware of various conditions that might cause metabolic derangement and impede a few people from getting the typical awesome results of a proper Paleo lifestyle. The Paleo Solution podcast is a trusted source of information and I guess there is always the hope that I will discover the answer that I have been searching for in the next episode. Even if that does not happen the podcasts are still worthwhile, informative and entertaining. But if you are looking for new directions to the podcast, I think exploring some of the possible root causes of metabolic brokenness and other health concerns might be one good direction (and I’m sure there are other worthy directions you could take things as well). Or keep it the way it is, but please don’t stop doing the podcasts anytime soon.

  18. says

    Hi Robb,

    Thank you so much for your podcast! I am listening to it now, and just heard your call for feedback:) Although it may be feel like the same to you, I find it as a great motivation to maintain healthy habits.

    I heard you on the Joe Rogan podcast a bit ago, and I thought it was so fun to hear about how you train high-level athletes. Perhaps you could bring on more people to interview that would complement the Paleo/athletic lifestyle?

    Thanks so much for all that you do!


  19. kellie says

    hi Robb!!
    I also love the idea of doing “case study” episodes. I would love if you had one real person come on each week, tell their story, ask questions, get specific advice, even offer tips and tricks (like busy mom, recovering anorexic, senior or endurance athlete…)
    could be inspiring and helpful to hear stories of others out there trying to make it all work in the concrete jungle.
    either way, please don’t stop, love the show!!

  20. Rob says

    Can someone post Dr. Parsley’s contact information? Its hard to make out what he says at the end of the podcast and I dont see the transcript posted yet.


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