Dr. Simone Koch, an integrative medicine doctor and author, joins us in this podcast episode to share her insights and expertise on integrative medicine.
In this episode, we will discuss:
- What is integrative "functional" medicine? And why should you care?
- What is silent- or neuroinflammation & how to address it?
- Proven Biohacks you can try today.
And many more!
Watch or listen to our podcast with Dr. Simone Koch to learn more about integrative medicine, where conventional and evidence-based complementary medicine meets.
Hello and welcome to a new episode of The Mindful Leader Podcast. Today I have a very special guest, Dr. Simone Koch. We talk about exciting topics, especially in the area of a High-Performance mind for managers, for tech leaders. Over the years Simone has been working in the integrative medicine and in various subjects. Today we will go in and have a look. She also wrote very interesting books, not only one but several and we are going to talk about them a little bit. I think thatyou just get my impression on the topic:
I always like to talk a lot about optimizing the mind, but the body is part of it, and that's why this topic is how do I get the body in a good condition so that I have a healthy brain, brain health, is very important. I have also been involved in biohacking and Epigentics for many years to recognize and understand this and also learned to appreciate this over the years. And when someone as Dr. Simone, who has been working in this field for such a long time, joins me here in the podcast, I imagine that there will be a very exciting conversation today. Hopefully it will also motivate you to dive more into into these topics. I think you will get some insights and tips to get started. So first of all, welcome Simone, nice to have you here! Thank you. I'm very happy that I can be here. Maybe we can start by get into your profile and background as you have many experiences And apprenticeship. I also found in your website a long list of achievements you've had, so maybe tell us a little, first of all, about how it all started, how you got into this field, and which topics you are currently interested in. Yes, sure. How did I get started in this? I've always been very, very interested in everything to do with the human body since I was very young and I've always had access to this topic as well because my father is a psychotherapist and a coach. Because of this, I always have beenvery interested in this topic:
About human body. Then I decided to study medicine and at the same time, through my father, very early on, when I was around 14 years old, I attended my first seminar "Traumdeutung" (dream interpretation), and when I was 18 I had an education, which does not appear on my homepage, for a Filipino shamanism, including inauguration. In the end, I ended up in the classic school of medicine, so to speak, because I wanted to understand the facts and backgrounds. And it's still like that for me. I'm very open to many things. but I would like to understand things down to the last synapse and also understand what are the actual physiological backgrounds behind it. In the medicine field, it's just the way that you have to learn an awful lot and you have to pass difficult tests, at least in Germany, and when you start working, for example, I went through the training, where you have to work 100 to 120 hours a week, where you only have very fewtime to think about:
"Does it make sense what I'm actually doing?" Then I became very ill after my first child and had a severe Postpartum thyroiditis, which was followed by many symptoms afterwards, Then I came back to what I actually learned in medical school, namely that I see people as a whole whole. I started again in that field, but more to a functional medicine, dealing with integrative medicine. I got a further education as a nutritional doctor and another further education as a environmental doctor So that's how it came about little by little as I was originally still as a gynaecologist active in a practice with other doctors. At that time, more and more people came to me because they had heard that I know my way around and take my time to look into the problem further. That really annoyed my boss because the health insurance companies pay for a five minutes conversation. But a discussion about Integrative medicine and functional medicine usually takes about an hour. And if you don't examine her further or something, then you don't get any money, which led to the idea of setting up my own private practice, which I then did. It worked very well and then graduallyother things occurred:
As an author, activity as an expert, social media, and so on because I just noticed that our practice is always fully booked. We have insanely long waiting lists, and if you want an appointment with we, you can only get one at the end of next year, if at all. I'll take from time to time new patients, but I am absolutely fully booked. And it's also difficult for my colleagues. We just notice how huge the demand for this kind of medicine is, that combines integrative thinking with actual evidence-based science. And that's why at some point I just made the decision that I want to move more people, more than the 2000 or so patients we have. I then decided to go public, I write books, give courses, videos, lectures and so on. Firstly, because I enjoy it a lot, but also because I simply meet a lot more people that I can reach and help because I just noticed that if I can't get 20 clones of myself, then I can't afford to help them all. And so that's how I got here. Yes, it is very exciting!The problem of scaling is:
How can I do more? How can I more people? It makes perfect sense. As a computer scientist I also have always thought about how to have more impact for the word and how to achieve more. So that makes a lot of sense. And maybe later I would like to ask you again about your experience in a shaman training as it is is super exciting, but let's get into the topic of integrative medicine. I've been working on it myself for a few years now, I was in California most of the time, only came to Berlin in 2016. and somehow by accident, at that time a friend of mine recommended me to visit an integrative medicine doctor and I had no idea what integrative medicine was. I went there and realised that was exactly what I was searching for and as a computer scientist I needed to start, including systems to look at everything and so I started to understand how everything works. And I still think the term functional or integrative Medicine is not yet familiar to many. Maybe you can shed some lights, give us a bit of background what it actually is and what is cool about it. Yeah, that's right. This is still unfamiliar to many. Our medical system is designed to see what's going on it for symptoms that you have. For example, you have a headache. You go to a doctor, you get something that's supposed to fix the symptom of a headache, probably pain killers. Then, depending on what qualifications the doctor has, they will try to look deeper into it. For example, if you go to the neurologist, it quite likely you get diagnosed with migraines. If you go to Orthopaedists, you'll probably get diagnosed with a tension headache. If you go to the general practitioner, they probably say you just have too much stress, which is a good thing, but they don't really try to find out the actual background of those headaches. And I don't know whether this is a real case, or whether that's just ever used to represent how insane we actually are in the Medicine field, but there'a case given to students to work on and then more and more questions are asked and so on and in the end it's puzzle solving who has a nail in their head and that's why he had a headache. But almost no one does it as far as examining the patient in this presentation. That'san extreme example of how our medicine works:
we collect a lot of diagnostics and technical data and so on, but there's very little Hands-on where the doctors find the cause behind the problem. That's the difference in functional and integrative medicine. We look and try to find the cause. We always describe it in such a way that we are at the root of a tree shimmy along and you first come to the big root and then comes first turn and then the next until it just stops at the end to this very fine network of the roots. And our goal is to get to the very end to find out where did the troubles begin with.Here's an example of a functional medicine:
It stated that one says, "Okay there are hormonal imbalances here." Then the next question is why are there hormonal imbalances? And if you realize that someone is clearly under too much stress, then comes the next question "Why can't he cope with this kind of stress? Where is the problem here, how can I fix it?" And if it's a genetic problem, what is the underlying problem? Why were these genes just turned on in this person? Is there perhaps environmental medical problem here? And can I change that? It can go very, very far and it is always a bit of detective work. If you know the series "Doctor House," which is always a bit like that. We really try to get to the bottom of things. It is sometimes actually experimental like with Doctor House, that you just have to test something out and see if it brings anything, and try to see which one is better. And in the end, it should be much, much more than just medication treatment, it is a fight against the root cause. For example, we look into the genetics, into the living environment, into the entire life, to really make sure the problem doesn't show up again. So not that I have to be medicated for life or anything, but that real healing occurs whenever possible, in the sense that no more complaints exist for the rest of this person's life. But somehow it feels like there are not that many integrative and functional physicians. Like what you just said, it is very hard to get an appointment and you are definitely not the exception. My guess is that there is probably far too few of them. Why could that be? Why are there so few of them? One of the reasons is that it's not the branch you're looking at as you won't have Porché in your yard because it's just very time-consuming and doctors are largely obligated according to the Fees Ordinance billing for doctors and that does not cover the consultations at all and the consultations are actually a very important part of the whole thing. It is where I really try to get to know people and in its depth of its personality and getting to know its overall structure where I can find out where the problem really comes from. It is actually a very big problem and you have to Have more trust and to get out of those models, but that then often meets with a lot of envy from other colleagues. And the doctors are brought up that we to not trust ourselves for what we do. And from the monetary side, what an independent consultant in any company earn an extremely good in comparison to trained doctors; there are worlds in between them. If you really want to earn money, you have to become a radiologist or a maxillofacial surgeon or something like that. The functional medicine is not the right one. It's a field where you really care about people, must be of interest and that is what it is, incredibly exhausting, this is something that many patients or even people are not so aware of. But they get involved completely with someone and tune in to really get there and to be able to achieve healing, Which is something that also requires a lot of energy. For example, it is also very exhausting for therapist. So you can't scale that up indefinitely. In my early days I worked a lot of hours until it got to a point where I've noticed if I go on like this, it will literally cost me my life. I've got it now, but my patients often have little understanding why I don't do as many patients anymore. But who am I, if I advise you to live your life in such a way that it is worth living for you and that they get out of their stress. And so if I don't live it myself and I burn myself out completely and then most people then say they have to understand better, that's why it's so important. Next, is the problem of training. There is hardly any good training, you have to just read a lot to deal with yourself what has for me, that's why my primary goal now is what I have set myself so far there are no significant steps. But that I would have liked to educate myself. There a lot of programs, but that is then mostly about the USA and I also he has done various things and I have to say none of them were really good, so none of these Training programs that I have done were helpful. Most of the helpful knowledge I actually acquired it myself from years and years of experience and very, very, very, very much research. It's very hard. You have to put in so much effort, there are so much knowledge to know and absorb, there are also so many areas which then becomes exhausting. But I liked the one point where you said you should be doing what you are telling other people to do Because if you treat people, treat patients, but then you don't do it yourself, then you lose your credibility. I originally found you out on your podcast. Then I saw you are also very well represented on Instagram. By the way, We will put the Instagram handles and all the links in this episode in there that the listeners can also go in there and take a look at because Simone shares a lot of cool contents. But one can see that you actually cover the topic of Biohacking. Of course, we will discuss this term later because I see so many similarities between Biohacking and integrative medicine. I believe that someone who has background in biohacking can do better at because you have deeper understanding of what to do. So one can actually see that from what you what you do and they can also read the part in the books that you actually implement all of the bio hacks in your own body, so to speak. Can you put it that way? Absolutely! And for me, I am my best patient. The best example is in my early 30's to mid 30's I was 30 kilos overweight, exhausted to death, was constantly ill, had one illness after another, was always tired, looked like I was in late 40s to early 50s. And now, ten years later, it's the complete opposite. Most people tell me I have infinite energy, and that's what I feel too. I haven't been sick a day for four to five years. Actually now, with the whole Covid pandemic, I thought about how I'm always around many people. Despite incredibly much contact, I have not yet had Covid. And my children thought about whether they can remember whether their mother has been ill before and indeed my children couldn't remember that I had something before, not even a cold. I don't want to jinx it and I get sick tomorrow. But what I'm doing seems to work and I try to actually do everything I preach, but always and when we talk about hacking to a certain extent. I believe everything, even when it comes to biohacking, it can take on the traits of obsessive-compulsive disorder. I find that for many who are in the biohacking field, a lot then is too dogged again, so that it becomes unhealthy again. That's where I try to walk the middle ground, because I believe that also enjoyment and celebrations and social interaction and be with each other is just as important for human well-being and for us to feel really good and comfortable, that health is not the form should accept from stress and coercion. And now I would simply become a very immodest captain. A good talk here! I think balance is important in everything. Now about Biohacking, I said these synergies in there and I think now it will be interesting for the listeners, especially in the Tech area, As I said, I'm in there for many years so I know what kind of surroundings it is, which probably rings similar warning signals like you had, which is the reason I thought here in this episode, you can give specific insights. So the principle for Tech leaders, there are many, continuously deadlines and they are always under time pressure, where ideally everything should be ready by tomorrow. This is ideal or even yesterday. New information coming in continuously. So a lot is going on every time and the area of Technology is also developing very quickly. Especially now with something ai, artificial intelligence, has grown so much in the last 5 to 6 years, so staying on top of everything all the time and usually if you do even more, the harder it is to switch off. You work about 12 hours a day, usually sometimes even through weekends just to get ahead; it's this pressure that keeps building up. Intuitively one knows that this is not sustainable, that it is not healthy. Many of the people are feeling stressed, feeling overwhelmed but keep going through it and then get to a point where you feel that you get mental exhaustion. You want to do more, but somewhere there is a lack of energy to do more. Or maybe you do more, but you get less and less back. And that's an environment that's actually clear in principle, here and there a little bit different, and there's still another form of it, but that describes this lifestyle and of course you can notice right away that it is not so healthy for you. So maybe you cango in there first:
Listening to this lifestyle, where do you see problems there? Or ultimately where does the alarm rings? This is a problem for many, but it seems particularly strong in tech area. Our body is made to be able to act well and to be able to deal with acute stress. So everything in our system. So acute stress does not harm us, it can unfold the homeotic effect. Homeotic always means a stimulus is so strong that it leads to adaptation processes and leaves you stronger afterwards than you were before. And that's what our system is designed for. But what happen in the Tech area is chronic stress. Massive stress all the time there and that leads our body to; Let's go to the subject of cortisone or cortisol. so a very typical stress hormones. For this system we have two switches, and one kind of turns on stress and the other turns off stress.I always use a pool as an example:
If we have stress, the pool fills up and the water keeps running in, and when one of the first switches is reached, then the stress is on and the water has to keep running until it reaches the second switch. When the second switch is reached, then the drain goes up and then the pool runs empty again until just below the limit of the first switch. Our stress system is not actually made that way. We actually have two different formulas for cortisol that go on different amounts react. There is also everything in the technical gearshift and such, that suits the Tech leaders probably better, but it's a typical dual switch system. The problem is that in such cases as you describe, we always have just enough stress to raise the level of cortisol. So it moves between these two switches, meaning it never reaches the second switch, which causes the whole thing to run empty again. As a result, the body is in a constant state of stress reactions, which in turn leads to inflammatory reactions. Too strong inflammatory reactions cause certain substances to be released throughout body to generate inflammation that can damage certain systems, for example that responsible for sleep, That is the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which is responsible for controlling our circadian rhythms in our brain. The market, for example, does not have any chronic stress and the inflammation is damaged by it, that means our bio rhythms are affected and confused. We no longer sleep well, the sleep is not restful and then you get into a spiral, which then leads to the so-called burn-out at the end, or you will get sick at this rate. It can lead to very extreme diseases, such as heart attack, cardiovascular disease which is very typical, and also the possibility to get an autoimmune disease is significantly increased and a cancer disease is significantly increased. So all sequence appearances from the whole area. Theother is; maybe you've heard this:
"How do you make mice depressed?" in studies. If you want to make a mouse depressed, you don't let it rest. You give it high stress; you poke or annoy it, and then, if the mouse's hiding somewhere, then get it. You get it back, and along the way you play rock music for it and give it lots of light stimuli and basically. Principally, that is what you said about Tech area. There's always tight deadines, there's always someone who drag one out of the desk and says you have to get something done now. In a long run, it will lead to such overloading of the systems, that's just the way how the central Shutdown comes, which is there to actually protect yourself from those stimuli. So the body as the sensors no longer allows it and it goes into a freeze mode that you become numb inside and that's what many who are active in such professions or who live a life that is structured in this way then describe that you feel numb inside. And for them to feel something, they need to do extreme things, such as using drugs or take any other things. Or they simply life like they are puppets. They feel nothing more or only very little. And with that, we can go to a very exciting Biohacking. Let's go back to the mice that has been teased so much. So the mice got five minutes a day of acute stress. In this case it's running very fast. This mouse Is given an ice bath namely five minutes a day and they have found that these five minutes a day, probably by the "switch principle" I explained before, because that these 5 minutes is enough to reach the two switches and then stop the whole thing again and again from the body, i.e. letting the stress hormones drain away again. It reverses the effects of chronic stress and that is a very exciting finding that you can use for yourself. In the meantime, it is now also being researched on people has been similar at stanford university. However, they don't you make people depressed here beforehand. They were already have so much stress, then they go ice bathing where it has been found has incredibly positive effects. Of course, you don't have to get that far. That's just why many who have this stress often get advice that you shouldn't bring in additional stress because you're so stressed. In fact, however, people with acute stress can de-stress over a short period of time. Only five minutes can be super helpful. You can do the classic morning ice bath or equally useful sauna or breath work, so specific breathing like compound breathing or other breathing techniquesalso that's very classic:
twice breath in and once breathe out. We do that too when we get stressed otherwise, we don't notice it, and that can also be mapped from the outside and leads to the result if you do that done for five minutes, so the very strong calming of the nervous system. And these are all things that are really evidence-based, that come from a good research situation that can be used as a classic Biohack to help the system to calm down and get back to a much better mental level and physical performance. At the same time, when you go ice bathing, your dopamine increases by 250% for up to three hours. That's more than what cocaine can do, so it's worth it! Afterward you will feel very focused and very motivated and can do a great job. Yes, it was great that you share very concrete Biohacks. If you can't start with ice bath, you can do a cold shower and so on. You can work your way there but there's no reason at all to start slowly with something like that. In the end, the ice bathing is always a question of will. You can't get used to the cold in that sense that it will no longer be cold. So it is around zero degrees cold water. And the only way to achieve these effects that I have just mentioned can't be achieved by showering, they can only be achieved by going into really really cold water and also longer term like say five minutes and the shower doesn't give you full immersion. It only touches a small area of the skin, it is also tiring, it does not have this certain meditative component. But it is still a good start; It is better than nothing. And there's also a good study on depression with showers. Yes, absolutely, I think just getting in a bit on the practical side I mean, then one on the other is a Law Spectrum families den Hopes for his recent insight 163 minutes in his ice The box inside is very cool. But let's go back to the silent inflammation. I think this is a good piece of information for people who work in the Tech area who notice tiny symptoms here and there, but still ignore them. But you can't see those "quite" inflammationbecause they are there quietly. For many people, they usually think:
"If I don't see anything, I don't do anything!" And if I then now also go to the doctor regular family doctor, maybe they do a blood work but unfortunately. Of course I don't see where I stand now. What would you need to see it? Which biomarkers would you need in a test to see if you have it? Classic inflammation markers, which can depict Silent Inflammation And if it's not even the highly sensitive CAP That's relative cheap, but is very important here. All these markers are not an exclusion criterion. If I have a normal high sensitive CAP, that doesn't mean that I don't have silent inflammation. From then on the next big ones are important TNF alpha and Interleukin-6, which are two very important types of inflammation markers. But also here again, if they are inconspicuous, it can still not be 100%. Then more important markers are Interleukin-1, Interleukin-10 and Interleukin-8, which I would also look for and actually also still Interleukin-4. If you have everything that I mentioned, then you actually a very good picture. Then I'm going in the direction where I can say quite well, "Okay, you have a silent inflammation." You also said something about a complete blood work, You can get a marker from the complete blood count called leukocytes. If it's too low, respectively, very low. A silent inflammation does not increase leukocytes, which has a typical sign of acute inflammation would be, but it comes from the constant disruption of development of blood cells in the spinal cord. The ignition means that the leukocytes are more easily lowered. They're just not so low that the doctor hears the alarm ringing and says something has to happen but they're in the bottom three or so. These are mostly people who are very susceptible to infections, who tends to suffer when one has chronic inflammation. And that's how it was with me, too. That's how you get your cold all the time or anything. Unfortunately, it is very tricky ff it's already very advanced. So if the bodies are down, and the immune system is so down-regulated that it can no longer react to infection, or you have no more illnesses or anything, but still feels super bad. This is the second variant. Sometimes patients come to me. They say that they have not been sick for years but they don't feel good. Often time it means that the system due to the silent inflammation is so constantly busy and so disturbed that it is not capable of responding to what is known as an acute infectious stimulus by rhinitis or to react adequately and then they simply have nothing left, because thatis not so clear to most:
What we perceive as illness is our immune system's response and not the disease itself, but the reaction of our immune system. The actually causes symptoms of illness because they want to make us healthy again what is in many cases work. Sometimes when it is no longer work and then I have a chronic infection, i.e. diseases that do not heal and is increased if you always suffer from inflammation. But those are the marker you can look at, which gives you a pretty good overview in which direction this could go. You have already said that if one now by default goes to the doctor, now makes a blood work. Of course, it depends, Maybe you can see that some numbers are a bit low. Will the doctor actually go to all these other Biomarkers such as the highly sensitive sensitive CAP and all the markers you mentioned? The problem is if there's no motivation from the doctor and the the client who is not at all understand about the biomarkers, will of course not ask many questions. Even if the patients know but the doctor just doesn't know it and can't deal with it at all and then says "Ah, it's nonsense," or "I don't do it," or even if the doctor agrees and says "Okay, I'll do it if you pay it yourself." But then you just sit there withthose values and think:
"What now?"Because I know that from my community, it's always been asked quite often:
How can i diagnose myself? Because even if pay for it yourself and then have the values and then you notice without a therapist it's difficult to get something there. That's why I had the anti inflammation program. My books are about exactly this topic, it has to be about that what can I do with it now? So firstly how will I end this and secondly what do I do against it, with it it gets better again, because it's just very complex and the values alone don't really get me any further and those are good points, although I'm suppose to go in now. The nice thing is that this book is written, but relatively new, that four weeks of the anti Inflammation program. I also started not not too long ago, the topicis very interesting to me:
The whole immune system with the whole these fantasy characters. These these wars and fights and so on. That one at all as well as a layman or as someone who is there now don't go out first come whole crowd therefore seems very in very go in a practical direction, where you actually started, as just said on the one hand you master, then it probably says again Nice that I can remember all the biomarkers are now times listed, but what do you do then? Maybe you can give us 2 to 3 things that we can do. We'll put the links in the show notes, it's worth it to you get a feeling of where the journey is going. On the one hand, there are things that you can do directly. That is, that always wonders how can I modulate directly? There are substances that directly modulate the immune system. I also listed some of them in the book, that would be things like turmeric, ginger, green tea extract, anthocyanin. And now my podcast partner would hit me and says, "Simone,, you're saying words which no one understands." But they're just so red Substances from berries or green tea extract is probably great, camec is a plant from India that has a modulating effect and you can use it directly have an effect on the immune system, which is always very, very important to me when you just do that and you don't change anything about your other lifestyle. They are likely to have minimal effect and not produce much change. And then it just goes one step further, then there are a lot Pillars and that's just mindfulness and my time so that something like that you I also think very, very much to do, like can i work on it for myself? How can I change my brain's neuroplasticity? How can I establish new paths and ensure that overall also become a resident there? Then it's about sleep to a very large extent and about sleeping rhythms plays a very, very big role for inflammation. Also the fact for techies that they are constantly exposed to artificial light sources, blue light which massively destroy our hormonal balance, leading to serious reasons Inflammation and that too is something that has been very well studied in shift workers and you also have the massive increase in autoimmune diseases, Cancer, and cardiovascular disease in recent years is probably also due to the fact that we have these new light sources have introduced our immune system and our disturb the hormonal system extremely strongly. Nutrition plays a very important role, some things are just more inflammatory than others, and there are also quite a lot of things that are strongly anti inflammatory act from the diet. We have about ice bath or cold exposure. Same goes for heat. Doing a sauna would also be a strong factor, movement plays a very important role, muscle mass it our muscles are by no means just tissue, that carries us from A to B, but are small hormone production centers, that produces myokins, which have almost exclusively strong anti-inflammatory effect. And the great thing is, the more muscle mass I have, the more myokin I produce with every movement I make and it doesn't have to be something big, it can take place on a very small scale. These are the main pillars to work on and then you just have to look and it says four weeks to the inflammation program, because the publisher wanted it that way. I personally have it called 16 week anti-inflammation programs or something, because there are so many tasks that I don't think you can do in four weeks even if you only pick 1 to 2 things to change for yourself, then it can have a really, really big benefit and for a really make a lot of progress. I find that very, very important that you don't overwhelm yourself, meaning you don't say I have to do everything now and I need to change my whole life. You can start small, I don't know maybe a light filter is installed on the screen. and for example I have a little cross trainer under the desk that I can kick my legs on while I work, which actually works great. So that's something that can run in the background and affect the performance in the minimal, so that you don't notice if you're going too fast and not too hard. If you already start something like this, then you have two very simple points, that don't change anything else in life. Well, you didn't have to change anything about the rest of your behavior, but you did can achieve so much. And when you realize that's good for you, then you might be motivated and says okay, maybe I'll put more effort, I can go to the sauna once a week and then maybe maybe before the sauna I can do half an hour of strength training. You just slowly get into it and see as you go. If you change your whole life immediately, you probably will only do it for two days and then you think, "Um.. No." Yeah, that's a good advice. So the take away here is that we just said silent inflammation is important, you can find out with various biomarkers. The great thing is now in the book, let's go then of course there's still a lot to do more into parts, the references to it are in there and also like you said It's probably not four weeks, it takes longer than that, but the idea is that you can choose something out this pool of ideas. We talked about ice bathing before, about nutrition, the sauna, about all the effort, that is things which you then draw from it and if you then do a little something here you can already move a lot. Of course you should measure it again later to see how it develops. I think the take away is that the book is a good start. I hope so too. Let's go back to that, you have several books and I just got the idea the last two years through Covid and also through vaccinations. One reads increases the problem of autoimmune disease, which is now handy if anyone has gotten some inflammation and is actually struggling. Or maybe even has gotten Covid or whatever and then notice afterwards they still feel so tired, and whatever side effects that come with it. Now this topic of autoimmune, it's going in a different direction again, that now we talked about modulating immune system now it actually is so, now that's up, but now the immune system does what not to deal with which is helpful for your own body. I think you wrote one or even two book about this topic, right? Yes, actually many of my books are about special Autoimmune diseases around Hashimoto these are actually three books. One is about Hashimoto's thyroiditis. It is an autoimmune disorder involving chronic inflammation of the thyroid. Another one is about everything about all autoimmune disease and here specifically about the intestines so what can I do to harmonize an intestine so that if I have an autoimmune disease, it will get better, if possible, and maybe even disappear. In fact, it is so many have described this idea beautifully in the four Weeks whole educational program describes. Therefore, immune system as an army of different fantasy characters who are at a war because we're stuck on this idea of it immune system and that's not it the immune system consists of whole, very, very many different part participants or army members. The problem Autoimmune disease is that it is not general boost of the immune system. People with autoimmune disease also tend to have it more susceptible to infection than others, but it's just part of the immune system which no longer works properly. And here you are, on the one hand, the question Which part? This is a very important part of the treatment. And then which part is perhaps degraded in function? And these are all things that you can tackle individually if you really care about them and want to fight the cause and then want to fix it. Unfortunately, is it actually the fact that both after the vaccination and after Covid, you can see extremely major changes in the immune system. According some studies, there is no increased rate of new new autoimmune disease after the vaccination. But what is definitely important is an application from already existing autoimmune diseases and it certainly has often as well so that for many, that's already its base, she might choose that also have for years, but have not perceived as illnesses and then it actually erupted through this change of the immune system. What we do is to check the immune system of all our patients regularly. So we not only examine the interleukins, but all the immune cells themselves in their quantity and in their activity and so on. And we have found that both the diseases themselves and the Vaccination lead to severe changes in the immune system for a period X. It's still unclear due to the fact that everything is still so new, we have also found that we do a lot infusions therapies with certain substances that we can manage to make it well again. So when people come to infusion therapy regularly, we can achieve to re-harmonize the immune system. So that it is possible to heal naturally. But we still don't know for sure and no one is interested in exploring it further. The one book "Autoimmune Hilfe" will be something like that someone once has the feeling or maybe something is going on with me right now, is there some helpful tips for them in there? Of course! There you can learn about the diet, which is a very important factor and then it is essentially about and you also learn a lot aboutthe autoimmune disease itself:
why does the body do it? What is that, how do I get better? So then we have a second way to think of as a way of doing it. I think that has spread a lot in the last few months through this situation. Maybe let's talk briefly about the subject of neuroinformation Which is also very exciting, because for me personally, I've been in a journey to achieve a high-performance mind the last 2 to 3 years where on one hand through mindfulness and through mind-management To optimize the mind. And on the other hand we have the hardware, the brain. Of course the hardware has to run great and all the things where we just talked about it, now the silent inflammation for you too possible can also influence the brain and neuroinflamation that's also tricky, what are your experiences around this? How can you even do that? How can you notice that when I have a status like this, for example Brain fog where I am kinda forgetful, I forget where I put the keys, then when I'm searching for it, I forgot that I wanted to get the key. I don't know what's up with me, I feel a bit empty. Could that be a sign of it? Or are they simply not related to it? How would you go about it? So first of all they are absolutely psychological symptoms, they are very, very major symptoms of basic inflammation. So most have something to do with mental symptoms, for example brain fog, difficulty concentrating, insomnia. depression, anxiety disorders, basically anything that goes in that direction. On the one hand, what diagnostics, it is just difficult to get directly to the brain but you can diagnose the whole body, and you can See, "Okay, there's a strong inflammation there." Then it is as what we mentioned before, We can examine whether the brain barrier is still intact Which usually by neuroinflammation doesn't function well anymore. We take a look at the protein S whether substances pass from the brain into the blood that shouldn't only occur in the brain. If it's very noticeable, then since you know if the blood-brain barrier, which should normally be very strong no longer intact, that's a classic sign of neuroinfalammation. There can be many consequences which can have a very, very big impact. A very strong factor here is actually sleep and our circadian rhythm because our brain needs to clean up, maybe you've heard it before, the so-called glymphatic system, where paths in the brain are open in your sleep and then you can basically clean yourself. I describes that always likes my cleaning lady doesn't like that at all when I I'm at home when she's supposed to clean as she's always hit something against my legs when I sit and then I have to sit somewhere else when she cleans. She always says I'm a nuisance and I always have to move to the side. That also what the glymphatic system does. that has to move apart and make room for one to be cleaned and that only takes place when we sleep a sufficiently, when a before some there is also enough deep sleep. And on the other hand, it only happens when we sleep and work, basically act like what our biorhythm is intended. Behavior outside of it impose these cleaning operations to run well, which can then specifically lead to inflammation in the brain. Then there are many neurotoxic substances that we are surrounded with, we deal disruption in this area. Also all kinds of chronic stress has lead to that system to over react, which can lead to an inflammation of the nerve cells. Maybe a few points from the very, very wide field, that can get very broad. My experience is actually even though everything is great with your mind, and your mindset, for many, this is actually a physical physiological cause that indicates where you have to go to improve all these things. At the end of the day, it's the same when you try to change your mindset to improve your performance,you should think about:
"How can I get real rest periods? How can I regulate my entire system better?" which then also leads to a reduction in inflammation. We often have this idea, mind or body, and that's the end of it. From my point of view, it is always both.They are working closely together and things like that just happen:
chronic stress lead to measurable physical inflammation that we can affect our brain health.So the takeaways are:
good sleep, deep sleep above all things and there are of course some things that we don't dive deep around the topic of sleep optimization. But there are also some tips on what you can do and I'm sure you probably have that In the book, some cool stuff in there! We talked very briefly about blue light blocker to block the blue light from the display. Or is there some stuff you can do to fix that relatively are simple, where you get a lot out of it? Maybe we could just have a few more minutes, maybe go back to the topic of neurotransmitters for a moment. That's for me, I've seen even over the years Those are very important point, because as you said, there's a connection between the mind and the body. But if now, for example, neurotransmitter messenger substances ultimately are no longer enough of there or if the completely outside by this chronic stress are unhinged, not really be able to work more properly, that would be another topic. Maybe from your experiences, can you tell us what can we do about it? I believe the most important neurotransmitter in today time is dopamine. Simply because quite a lot in our environment is designed to get dopamine with us bring to distribution again. This is how everything that is addictive in any way works, so since I don't know if that's true, but there was this Netflix documentary that brings to the Familia dilemma. So the developers of the ground have said they specifically have to do this the whole system was aimed at that. How can I design the Google interface so that since the email pair Mailbox produces dopamine release, so over that is empty and am kinda what happened there and no idea and that we're not clear. So dopamine has a limit to how much can be produced and when there is no longer enough, i.e. when the storage is empty, then he can no longer take place from dull and then we become unmotivated, there's lack focus and motivation. And on the other hand, if I do something over and over again - well on the one hand, each dopamine peak has successively deep leads. That is also relatively clear. Well, because dopamine was probably your neurotransmitter that got us to leave the cave at all, because in principle if we go back - evolutionary and historically - it was like leaving the cave and leaving nice cozy family surroundings was dangerous. Why should you do that? And accordingly, everything to do with exploring is adventure is what produces dopamine, which then leads to how you feel good and that it just feels rewarding and great. That said, that's probably why all animals have dopamine systems without that there's simply nothing. It is also logical that if you fell, you'll fall deeper than what you had before because otherwise you would never go out again and half of it would stay with you. The trouble with this is that if you keep doing the same thing. When you gets very stuck on a system that causes the peaks, so the highs keep getting lower and the lows keep getting deeper and eventually this always same activity has also led to no dopamine at all. On the other hand, this educational system leads to feeling that one cannot derive pleasure from any other activity. This is a big problem these days because we have a lot of things the dopamine via carriers such as super sweet food or super savory food or super colorful computers surfaces. There's always new stimuli like TikTok or Instagram or something, where you still have one and another gets one and another on top of that. I just imagine it always feel like when you have something that's wear out. For example, If I always use a same knife, at some point it will be no longer sharp and that's just how it is with our receptors. I belief that it plays a very, very important role here, so that everything runs smoothly to always achieve a positive effect. Furthermore, Oxytocin is super important, it is the Neurotransmitter of social interaction, of love, of affection. which, above all, has been extremely short in recent years because of social distancing. All in all, we all no longer speak to each other or only a little. We only see each other via computers, we don't touch each other anymore. I could talk about neurotransmitters for hours because I also find the subject extremely exciting, but that's one of things that I think very close to my heart that are considered very important. On the one hand, the social interaction is becoming less and less, so the opposite pole to Adrenaline and too close adrenaline missing. And the opposite pole, which ensures that dopamine has a longer-lasting effect and does not always make such blatant peaks and then corresponding downs and just that we are over exposed to stimuli. There was this experiment where you have kids eat strawberry yoghurt and evaluate them. There are yogurt with real strawberries versus strawberry yogurt with artificial strawberry flavors. Without exception, the artificial flavors were rated higher because they taste more like strawberries than the real strawberries.And that's just very, very strong problems:
our carrier, our reward system is broken. Yes, that makes sense. And the point with oxytocin is a hack that I've discovered many years ago. For example, when you see the picture of a kitten. That is also why such kitten videos are very popular. That is just a tiny hacks and I find it so exciting that those simple things work well. Now to summarize, we have talked about some hacks before, the ice bath, the sauna and stuff like that. If you go in the direction and gradually try them out a bit. You know how to measure things, you can see things, and you can make little changes. But as you go along, you'll achieve something big. You wrote it beautifully too where many years ago you realise that you're still alive and have a reason you do something good for yourself and then You notice something is happening. Do you have any advice or recommendations to motivate the listener now, for Tech leaders with the surroundings I described before and also a kind of motivation why they should be proactively into these topics? Yes, I do have something very important to share. Many have the idea that what you might also love, can't do anymore, and I think that's very important. It's not like that. That at this point in time, it's not like I work less. Well I still work an awful lot and if you look at it from the outside very stressful life, but I'm doing incredibly well with it. I also think it's important, of course, if you don't like what you're doing at all. and finds terrible, then it will not work, but that is just another case, then you have to look for another job. But I don't think that's what you're getting at either, then those who actually like what they do. For me as oneMotivation:
You shouldn't be forced and you do what you actually loves, you shouldn't give anything up in order to regain health, and that you actually just go this way and lots of little things integrated into your everyday life. That's also important to me that you do it without taking an incredible amount of time, because personally most of my hacks are so integrated into my day. For example, I always have my raw cocoa in the morning because I don't always drink an abundance of different Biohacking substances, so to speak. It takes five minutes to prepare. And if I have an ice bath, it will also only take five minutes and then I'll just get ready. I only have to get up ten minutes earlier so that I can do the morning routine but that's not a problem, because through everything I do, I have much restful, more effective sleep, which is why then in turn you do everything you do with full joy, energy and well-being. So that even when I'm in my 40s, I don't feel Like I was in my 80s but as if I were only 20. I can say for myself I feel better today than I ever did in my life. And I think I look better now, which can be extra motivation for you, and that's just the motivation I give people. It doesn't mean that you have to give up everything you have or do right now, but you have to find an easy way around it that works and somehow accommodating other things. Of course there will always be days - even for a high-performer - when you actually think everything is too much for me, but even then, you have to learn that you can then maybe take a break. But most days you should be at a level where you say "Hey that was a great day" even though at the end of the day you're tired but you go to bed motivated and not exhausted to death because you fall asleep on the sofa with half eaten fries in front of you when you have nothing else to do. That's the interesting thing. You also said before that you feel younger than you biological age. Ultimately, there is the age that you also have on paper. And there's biological age that you can also measure yourself. It was interesting about the meaning test is that it says that the biological age is actually 20 years younger, for example. Yes, what I find exciting, but I haven't done the test myself. They test different things like genetics and markers and so on. I have done the test recently because the company had asked me to cooperate and so I did the test and there was also measured on biological age of 23. Of course you feel good and happy. Yes, that's also another way To motivate yourself. When you do this, you realise that you can actually turn back time little by little. Of course, you'll get more enjoyment of life, more energy, and when you get the results, you feel good. I think we've now get to the end of the podcast. We could still talk for hours just about the subject of neurotransmitters and such, but we got them the essential stuff covered. I would definitely put all the links, topics, and books we talked about in the show notes so that everyone can start go into this a bit more. There were many helpful insights and advices from you and I would like to thank you first. Maybe one last thing from your side, any thought or any impulses that you want to share with the listeners here? First of all, thank you very much for the nice conversation and what's super important to me that I say in every interview is that, if you want to start on these topics, You have to find out what suits you best. That's very important, that's why I always give so many suggestions at hand. What can be great for one can be disastrous for another. And just because something suits me perfectly doesn't mean it has to suit you perfectly, and You have to learn to trust your body to feel what actually feels good for you. And you have To realise whether it actually feels good or it's just you that want it to feel good. Of course, no one would feel good while ice bathing as it is extremely cold but it feels good afterwards. You shouldn't feel dead afterwards and just watch 40 episodes of Walking Dead. You should feel really good after the ice bath and that's what you get for it; get a feel for what is really good for your body. But that's for me personally, not for another person. Absolutely! I believe many of your tips are on your homepage or probably a lot more are on Instagram. Do you also write a bit about micronutrients? Yes, quite a lot. So I just started with micronutrients on TikTok's, so those short videos on TikTok's around The topic of micronutrients. I think because there's a lot of information to share about micronutrients. But since the Story on Instagram is deleted after 24 hours, I'm trying to find out A way so that it will last for a long time. Yeah, let's see. Maybe soon there will be an official platform where you can look for things like this, so around these topics. Yeah, that itself is a topic, right? You put a lot of efforts making those posts and videos puts but then the stuff is all gone and you don't know when to find it once it's shared. It is better if we have a platform that is so accessible that people can always look around for that later, maybe one bit that needs to be better structured in the form of small courses and there goes it here our in the direction of education, where people systematically then also learning is. Very cool! I would like to thank you again for a very informative, nice conversation and I'll definitely be happy if everyone, who has now also listened here, took out a few impulses and Start to implement a few small things. Thanks, have a nice day!