Background

Ben Greenfield is an author and fitness expert.

Summary

Beyond Training: Mastering Endurance, Health & Life is about nutrition optimization for athletes and anyone else interested in nutrition.

Interesting Ideas

The human body produces energy by converting food into adenosine triphosphate, and then further into adenosine disphophate and phosphate.

How many calories your body burns at rest to maintain basic physical needs (lung, brain, heart, etc.) is called your basal metabolic rate.

Healthy fat is essential to brain function and overall health, and has been show to help increase weight loss, reduce risk of heart disease, lower blood sugar, and maintain proper brain function.

Athletes often want to be in a state of ketosis (burning ketones instead of glucose as your bodies main source of fuel) for the metabolic superiority of fats as fuel (fat burning efficiency, aerobic capacity, muscular endurance), mental enhancement, and the longevity advantages of controlling high blood sugar.

Ben mentioned the benefits of blending and juicing foods which I also support. Blending or juicing helps your body in that your body has to work less hard to digest food. It frees up precious energy to be go to other body processes.

The book mentioned many supplements that I am also a fan of which include things like l-tyrosine and curcumin. Both are beneficial for stress and mood.

The two ways your brain breaks down are neurotransmitter problems and HPA axis dysfunction. For example 2 things that cause neurotransmitter problems are sensory overload and gut-brain issues. The HPA axis includes the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, and the adrenal glands. These three tings work together to modulate things like mood, energy levels, metabolism, digestion, and immune system. 2 ways to fix HPA dysfunction are having less stress and avoiding excessive exercise.

Bens top supplements for increasing brain power included alpha lipoic acid (high amounts found in spinach, broccoli, and organ meats), carnitine, creatine, fatty acids, fish oil, phenylalanine, l-theanine, Phosphatidylserine, vitamin D, vitamin k2, bacopia maneri, lions mane, and others.

Research has shown that exercise can enhance BDNF, which is a protein that helps existing neurons thrive and to encourage the growth of new neurons and synapses.

For athletes wanting to optimize their performance, its useful to understand the basics of the circadian rhythm. At around 5 pm things like your cardiovascular efficiency, muscle strength, body temperature, protein synthesis, and workout recovery capability peak.

Ben made a good point that engineering a good sleep requires some self-experimentation. This is because sleep problems can be dependent on a variety of factors such as a neurotransmitter imbalance, mineral deficiencies, melatonin secretion, and so forth.

Positives

Well researched book.

Some Criticisms

No major criticisms.

Check out his book, here: (Amazon link).

Check out my other articles on health and nutrition: Diet and Health Tips for More Energy, How to Engineer the Best Sleep, 9 Ways to Reduce Stress.


Bibliography

Greenfield, Ben. Beyond Training: Mastering Endurance, Health & Life. Victory Belt Publishing, 2014.


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