Learn True Health with Ashley James

On Learn True Health, Ashley James interviews today's most successful natural healers. Learn True Health was created for YOU, the health enthusiast. If you are passionate about organic living or struggling with health issues and are looking to gain your health naturally, our holistic podcast is what you have been looking for! Ashley James interviews Naturopathic Doctors and expert holistic health care practitioners to bring you key holistic health information, results based advice and new natural steps you can take to achieve true health, starting NOW! If you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, if you are fed up with prescription drug side effects, if you want to live in optimal health but you don't know where to start, this podcast is for you! If you are looking for ACTIONABLE advice from holistic doctors to get you on your path to healing, you will enjoy the wisdom each episode brings. Each practitioner will leave you with a challenge, something that you can do now, and each day, to measurably improve your health, energy, and vitality. Learn about new healing diet strategies, how to boost your immune system, balance your hormones, increase your energy, what supplements to take and why and how to experience your health and stamina in a new way. Ashley James from Learn True Health interviews doctors like Dr. Joel Wallach, Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Oz, Dr. Joseph Mercola and Dr. Molly Niedermeyer on Naturopathic Medicine, Homeopathy, Supplements, Meditation, Holistic Health and Alternative Health Strategies for Gaining Optimal Health.
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Now displaying: December, 2022
Dec 16, 2022

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494: Why Rx Drugs Are Destroying Emotional and Mental Health

We've been conditioned to believe that emotional and mental issues are the result of chemical imbalances, but that's a myth. An overwhelming number of people are taking prescription medications for emotional health problems, and the numbers are growing at an alarming rate. That's because, in many cases, pharmaceutical drugs fail to address the root cause of emotional issues. The drugs we take to treat the symptoms of a condition could be causing more problems than they are treating. Join Dr. Michael Biamonte and Ashley James as they dig into why this is the case and how you can cure your emotional and mental health problems today!

Ashley James And Dr. Michael Biamonte


  • The relationship between gut health and emotional and mental health
  • The chemical imbalance myth
  • Neurotransmitter testing
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Heavy metal toxicity
  • The madness of marketing
  • Panic attacks and anxiety


Hello, true health seekers, and welcome to another exciting episode of the Learn True Health podcast. Today, we have back on the show Dr. Michael Biamonte. He was in episode 486 and 488 where he taught us all about candida and how you can get candida back into balance. A lot of people say get rid of candida, kill candida, but what we learned from Dr. Michael Biamonte is many people have candida overgrowth and we need candida but we probably need 90 percent less candida than what we have and when it runs rampant in the body, it affects our brain, it affects every organ, it affects every system. It just kind of takes over and everything dominoes in the body. So, you could have bad sleep, you could have cravings, you could have weight gain, you could have hormone dysregulation. You could have brain fog. The list goes on and on and on. Of course, there’s digestive issue that happen like diarrhea and bloating and in some cases, constipation, and we see it affecting our ability to focus. So, those who have ADHD symptoms. Right? Our ability to learn, our ability to concentrate. Motivation, our motivation in life. Our feeling of drive, our feeling of sense of purpose, sense of fulfillment from life. This can get actually very existential. When we see the body as a whole, this is a holistic podcast – welcome, if you're new to Learn True Health podcast – this conversation is that the body is not broken into parts. Modern medicine, when you go to a regular doctor at any given clinic, a medical doctor, their education has trained them to see the body broken into parts. So, you go to the liver specialist over here, the heart specialist over here, the endocrinologist over here, the brain doctor over there, and it’s great that we have specialties. You know, if you have a broken arm or need to be put back together after an accident, God forbid, I’m so thankful that we have this type of medicine. However, what we do see, if you get a 30,000-foot view, is that modern pharmaceutical-based medicine is horrible, has an absolutely horrible track record for helping us to heal from chronic illness, for helping us to get the body back into optimal health.

How often do you see people actually get off of drugs, get off of pharmaceuticals and get so healthy they don’t need them and get even healthier before they went to the doctor? In most cases, they get put on more and more and more medications the older they get. Not less and less. This is the unfortunate truth, is that it is a for-profit industry and it’s a big juggernaut. But when you come to holistic medicine, you come to the side of holistic medicine, now of course there are good and bad… I don’t want to say bad doctors. There are far more competent doctors and far less competent doctors just like there are more competent mechanics. We are fallible, we are humans. Right? Don’t put anyone on a pedestal ever. We have to understand in holistic medicine, let’s assume we are seeing and referred to very competent and experienced holistic doctors, what we’re seeing is, the philosophy that guides them is completely different from Hollywood portrays as medicine. They look at you as a whole. So, when we talk about mental and emotional health, we have to also see that physical health plays a role in that. Because something like candida in those past episodes, 486 and 488, with Dr. Michael Biamonte, we talk about how candida overgrowth and in other episodes where we’ve had experts on small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and fungal overgrowth, parasites, all kinds of stuff that affects the gut, we’ve had many. I have at least 20 episodes that you can go back to and check out when you go to, scroll down from the homepage and you’ll see Choose Your Own Adventure and you can find the digestive stuff and parasites, and all wonderful fun things to dive into. That all these very physical, tangible things, have an effect on the intangible like our emotional being and our mental health, our sense of who we are and how we are right now in the moment can actually be affected by what’s going on in our gut. 

So, we look at the body as a whole and we look at your whole life as a whole. We look at everything impacting you. I think it’s so gratifying to have a practitioner look at you and wanting to see all of you and saying “hey, I know you’ve expressed to me that you’re feeling a lot of stress, you’re feeling a lot of sorrow, or you’re feeling grief, or you feel anxiety,” and not discrediting those emotions and also not discrediting that there’s other aspects of your life like the role you play, the roles you play in your life and everything in your environment, and all of that, looking at your life as a whole and including your physical health. Let’s get some lab work done but let’s also talk about your spiritual health, your spiritual life, your mental and emotional health. Let’s talk about your environment, let’s talk about your relationships. So, looking at everything as a whole. 

That’s what Dr. Biamonte is here to discuss today, this wonderful viewpoint—looking at mental and emotional health from the holistic standpoint. Some of what he has to share today is going to rock your world, it was absolutely fascinating. I think I said the word “fascinating” 20 times in the interview because of how fascinating it was. I feel like I’m Spock, “That’s fascinating.” He shares some crazy statistics. I want you to really let them sink in. He kind of pulls us out of the matrix today in this interview. He shares with us stuff that we just let slide like the effects that certain drugs have on the human psyche and have on suicide rates, and yet, we just let these pharmaceutical companies slide, we just let it all side like the status quo is fine, everything is fine; meanwhile, everything is burning down. And I so hope that what he shares with you today helps you, gives you another piece of that puzzle that helps to direct your life so that you can learn true health, create true health in your life.

My husband has actually started working with Dr. Biamonte on a personal level doing the candida protocol. We’ve done some labs with him. First of all, let me tell you. I am as impressed with him in my interviews as I am working with him as a doctor, because my husband lets me in on their telemedicine calls. He’s a very caring, fantastic doctor, right to the point. Functional medicine, I should say. He really does deal with functional medicine. I’ve enjoyed the labs he’s had my husband do and the analysis of those labs, really interesting. And now, my husband is starting the diet and the supplement protocol, so I’ll keep you guys posted on how that goes, but so far, working with him has really been great. Definitely give him a call if you’re called to, if you find he’s interesting because so far, I’m really impressed and, well, the proof is in the pudding so we’ll see how my husband does after a few months on the protocol. I’ll let you guys know.

There’s a few resources I want to make sure that you are aware of. Especially if you're new to the podcast or newer to the podcast, I haven’t mentioned it in a while, but I have this great resource I built out with some of my favorite holistic naturopathic doctors. You can go to That's and I filmed a 7-day beautiful free course, less than 10 minutes a day kind of thing but it gets right to the point, the foundations of health. These are fantastic naturopaths and they have some great advice. This is actual steps that everyone will benefit from no matter what health issues you have – mental, emotional, physical, spiritual. It deals with the foundation of things that we should absolutely be doing to build our health no matter what. So, definitely check that out. Every day I email you one of the videos we made along with some great homework and tools for you. These are things that I often remind myself, “Oh yeah, I need to go back and do these things.” These are the basics but if you're missing one, it’s like missing a tire on your car. Your car’s not going to go anywhere. So, you have to have these foundations to have fantastic health.

The next thing I really want to make sure you know about. Because so many of my listeners end up becoming holistic health coaches, either for their own personal growth and their own health goals, or they’re just drawn to it and they want either add this to their career, have it as a hobby side career, or they want to completely transition into doing full-time holistic health coaching. Check out That's You get a sample class from Institute for Integrative Nutrition. That's where I went. It’s an online program designed for very busy people. So, if you're like, for example, full-time job and a mom or a dad and you’ve just got a lot on your plate, you can still graduate from the program. It takes a year. You do about 20 minutes a day. Sometimes if I was really busy, I would just accumulate all of my lessons for that week and do them all on a Sunday. Oftentimes I’d listen to them where I was cooking, doing laundry, driving. So, if you listen to a podcast, you could absolutely a year from now, be a holistic health coach. If you want to become more of a full-time student, it’s about 40 minutes to an hour a day. They have a six-month accelerated program. So you could check either one of those out, but I love that they designed it knowing that usually, it’s not someone’s career, you jump out of high school and go, “I’m going to be a health coach,” boom. You know, 17, 18, 19 years old taking the course when you have all the time in the world. Usually, it’s not your first career and it’s something that you already have an existing career, you're super busy and you have to somehow fit it into your life. What I love about the IIN, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition’s health coach training program, is your life gets transformed while you're doing it. You learn from amazing… it’s like if you love my podcast, it’s like my podcast TED Talks, like each week is digesting 3 or 4 amazing TED Talks on health and then they give you homework that you get to apply to your own life. So, each week you're adding almost like the foundations of health but you're adding more and more to your life.

Holistic health coaching is looking at your life holistically. It’s not just dietary theory. Yes, you do learn a hundred dietary theories in that course but that’s not even important. As a health coach, you're really helping people to get to their health goals by listening to them and drawing out of them the answers that they’re most of the time already in them. Then you help them crowd out their plate when it comes to eating, helping them bring joy into their life in every area of their life, so helping to identify what areas are missing joy. If you in your life are missing joy in certain areas of your life, you should definitely check out the sample class and consider “could I bring joy to every area of my life through this program?” Because that’s what I loved about the program, is it really helped to unfold and bring forth joy in each area of your life. It has you look at under a lens in a different way each area of your life. So you end up at the end of the program feeling much more fulfilled, satisfied, and joyous in your life as a whole in your body, but also in your world, in your relationships.

They say almost half, I think it’s like 47 percent of people that do the program just do it for their own personal growth, so I thought that was really cool. Right now, IIN’s having an amazing sale. I don’t know when it’s going to end, it’s going to end soon so you should go to and just check it out and see. Right now, they're offering a big discount and they are offering to sign up for I think it was $49 or something just to get started just as the down payment. Sometimes, a few times a year, they do these sales so it’s great to check out. But if you're checking this out and that sale is over, what I want you to know is that when I took the program, I asked them if they would give a discount to all my listeners because I talk about it so much and I’ve actually interviewed many of their teachers. So, they do give a great discount. Make sure you mention the Learn True Health podcast with Ashley James and say, “Hey, Ashley James said I’d get a discount. Make sure you give it to me.” So, yeah, check that out. Let me know if you have any questions. You can always ask me questions in the Facebook group, in the Learn True Health Facebook group. I’d love to see you there and answer questions. Every day I’m in that group answering questions. Not just me but there's other holistic health professionals in the group.

Every day when someone asks a question, there's a bunch I was jumping in to help and give our feedback. Feel free to join the Learn True Health Facebook group. You can go to to join the Facebook group. Make sure you check out the free sample class from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition for their health coaching program. You go to If you want the free class that created with some of my favorite naturopaths, you can go to and you’ll be given the 7-day class. It’s absolutely free. Something that I created out of love for you guys because it’s so needed. This is the foundations of health. Everyone listening should do those things that you learn in the 7-day course and everyone sees a benefit from doing it. So, I want all of you guys to have that benefit. I love you. I know you and I personally don’t know each other or maybe we do because I’ve actually met several of my listeners. But if you are struggling and you need help, please join the Facebook group because I don’t want to struggle.

What I want you to know, especially if you're a new listener you might not know this, I suffered for many years. I cried myself to sleep. I’d burst into tears often at how much I suffered. I had major chronic illnesses throughout my 20’s and it was very difficult. I know what that feels like. I don’t want you to suffer. If you're suffering, I don’t want you to suffer anymore. I have seen people recover from so many conditions they were told where “unrecoverable.” I believe in your body’s ability to heal itself. I believe that you can improve your situation no matter what. It has to start with you believing and so I want to let you know I believe in you and I believe in your body’s ability to heal and take these resources, take the free sample class from IIN and see if you get something out of it. Definitely take my free course and come join the Facebook group, ask for help. Pore through the answers. You can use the search function in the group. You can also use the search function on my website to find many resources. There are so many resources out there in the holistic world. You have to dig for them. But we’re here to help. The Learn True Health Facebook group is here to help you because we’re a whole community. We’re actually a community of over 5000 listeners and we’re here to help each other. 

So, suffering is needless and suffering is optional. This is what actually a few of my guests have come on the show and said. Suffering is optional, let’s make it optional. Let’s make it optional by discovering the tools, sharing the tools. As I constantly am uncovering these amazing holistic tools, I bring them to you because I know that they're going to help.

Now, what I’m planning for episode 500, and it’s been on my heart for a while now, is I’d like to do a testimonial episode. I received so many testimonials of people who have shared that through this podcast learning from the guests and from me. Their lives have been transformed, their health has been changed. In some cases, they actually saved a relative’s life, which is huge. There's one woman who saved her mom’s life. Her mom would not have lived if it wasn’t for this podcast. How big is that? So, if you have a testimonial listening to this podcast, please send it to me. You can send it to me. Come into the Facebook group and share it. I’d love to see it there, and other listeners would love to see it there too. You can message it to me on Facebook. I’d also love to include it. I don’t have to include your name if you're uncomfortable with that. I’ve been collecting testimonials so I can create that episode.

I think it’s so important. I know when I was suffering, hearing testimonials really helped. When I lost my daughter last year, I think the biggest thing that helped besides my connection with God was hearing testimonials of women who had lost their children and they're living, they're living their life, they’re happy, they were able to heal from it because at the time, I couldn’t see a way out. I couldn’t see that I could heal from it. So testimonials have, even though you might discredit your testimonial like “oh, who am I, my story is not so big,” but if you were suffering and now you're no longer suffering, sometimes that right there, that little story you have, is actually huge to someone else. It’s lifechanging to someone else. So, when I heard, my midwife was sharing with me some other women that she had worked with who like “oh yeah, this mom’s third child diet and now she has three more and she’s so happy.” Just those kind of stories, those type of testimonials might not seem like a lot but for those who need to hear them, it really helps. So please, if you have any kind of transformation, any kind of story of healing, please reach out to me because your story, even though you might not think it’s important, it could be lifechanging for someone else. And that's what I’m about. That’s what this podcast is about – it’s about helping as many people as possible to learn true health.

So, thank you so much for being a listener. Thank you so much for sharing this podcast with those you care about and thank you so much for sharing your testimonials with me so I can create that episode, episode 500. Whatever holidays you celebrate this month, you know, can be stressful a lot for many people. I recognize that you might not be listening to this episode in December although I’m releasing it in December. I want to wish you peaceful, gentle healing and loving holidays. Since I do celebrate Christmas, Merry Christmas for those who celebrate Christmas and for those who celebrate anything else. I wish everyone to have gentle, peaceful, loving season to let the stress go and replace it with love and peace in your heart and in your life and in your environment around you. Because we don’t need stress. That is not healthy for any of us. So, I love you all and enjoy today’s episode. 

[00:19:23] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is episode 494.

I am so excited for today’s guest. We have back on the show Dr. Michael Biamonte. What I love about today’s interview is we’re going to do some major myth busting. This is like pull you out of the matrix. We’re going to take you out and show you that you’ve been raised in a system that teaches you that you need drugs to suppress, to change, to manage your brain chemistry, your biochemistry. And when it comes to mental health and emotional health, the word “health”, they shouldn’t even be allowed to use the word “health” because it is so far from health. When it comes to emotional and mental health and prescription drugs, and I’m so excited to have you on the show to talk about this topic today. Dr. Biamonte was in episode 486 and 488. In those two episodes, we really did a deep dive into candida and gut health. Now there's a large correlation between gut health and brain health, and I definitely want to touch on that since that is one of your expertise. But you did mention in episode 488 that one of your favorite things to do is to take your patients or your clients and to help them get so healthy that they're off all their meds especially when it comes to mental and emotional medications. So, looking forward to doing a deep dive there. Welcome back on the show.

[00:21:03] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Thank you very much. I’m happy to be here.

[00:21:05] Ashley James: Excellent. Now, listeners can go to your website which is and of course, the links everything that Dr. Michael Biamonte does is going be in the show notes of today’s podcast at I’d love to know because your expertise has largely been around gut health or getting candida back in balance in the body instead of having an overgrowth of it for so many years. At what point while you were practicing and working with people and helping them, at what point did you go “Wait a second. I can help people get emotionally and mentally healthy” to the point where they're no longer on all these meds?

[00:21:47] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Probably in the late ‘80s when I started to see a correlation between several things. First was constipation. I had so many patients tell me “Gee. Since my constipation is handled and I’m no longer constipated, I feel so much happier. My mood is better. I feel lighter as a person. Not physically. They were speaking about more of their own being. They just felt lighter and happier.” So I started researching this and it also was part of my research into candida. I found the correlation between neurotransmitters and the digestive tract. I didn’t know that the body shuttled neurotransmitters and hormones in and out of the bloodstream to the digestive system and back and forth. Sort of like the body will the digestive tract as a holding tank for neurotransmitters and hormones and then pull them back into the bloodstream when needed.

When I understood the mechanism, it made sense as to why these people were now telling me that since they're not constipated, they feel so much happier and quite a few of them went off their antidepressants as a result of that. Some of my colleagues said “Well, that’s probably because their thyroid function improved.” But I actually did find the reference. Unfortunately, I forgot which book it was, but I think it might have been a book by Dr. Whitaker where he went over the fact that the body does pull these neurotransmitters and hormones back and forth in the digestive tract and out of the digestive tract, and you can’t do that if you have dysbiosis. So, you have to have a normal functioning digestive system in order to be able to do that. The other correlation I started to see was in people who had very high copper levels, and that goes back to Dr. Pfeiffer’s work at the Brain Biocenter in Princeton, NJ where he had cited that schizophrenics were very high in copper. He basically laid out that if he detoxed a schizophrenic from copper, his schizophrenia would go away and a lot of his mental health issues would go away that a lot of this was copper toxicity. 

I started hearing more and more from these people who were copper toxic about their mood swings, about how they try to sleep at night and they had racing thoughts and they just couldn’t shut it off and couldn’t go to sleep. It matched a lot of the, well, not a lot but some of the data that I was seeing in psychiatric books, of course they had no idea it was being caused by copper toxicity. But sure enough, when these people were detoxed from the copper, these symptoms would go away. 

So, I guess that was probably the initial thing that set me off on this. But once I armed with that knowledge, I knew there was a lot more. I knew I was just basically scratching the surface. I knew there was a lot more and that’s what led me to dive into it much deeper. I read a book in 2015 which really helped put this together for me. It’s called Deadly Psychiatry and Organized Denial by Dr. Peter Getzsche. He presented data suggesting that psychiatric drugs kill about half a million Americans and Europeans over the age of 65 per year. He also pointed out that in terms of long-term outcomes, people in less developed countries have far fewer problems with mental health and problems with drugs. Obviously, the answer is because they don’t have the availability. As you and I were saying once, on one of the podcasts, people nowadays, their availability to just go to a psychiatrist or even their medical doctor and say “I’m depressed, give me a pill,” they can do this very easily.

We were discussing also that our grandparents growing up had tough times. You’d come to this country and back in those days, times were tough. They had to struggle and bring themselves up by their bootstraps. They couldn’t just go to a doctor and say “I’m new to this country, I’m having trouble getting a job. Give me a pill.” 

[00:26:07] Ashley James: I have family members, I have friends who they're struggling and their doctor very quickly got them on multiple meds, depression, anxiety, and sleep meds and just thinking back to my grandmother who had to bury several of her siblings while escaping the war in a train with no heating, Just like the horror stories, right? And she was never on any psychiatric meds. She lived a full long life, a beautiful life. Kids, grandkids. Our grandparents and great grandparents had, in some cases, much harder times than we’re going through, not to belittle the struggles that we go through. But they didn’t have access to these drugs and these drugs, in many cases, are band-aids. I’d rather have someone, if a drug could stop someone from committing suicide, I’d rather have them be on that drug. But what we’re seeing is actually the opposite. We’re seeing that in a lot of cases, going to the drug ends up being that band-aid that then doesn’t let them go through and do the emotional and mental healing.

[00:27:14] Dr. Michael Biamonte: And the growth. Their own personal growth at the same time. 

[00:27:20] Ashley James: Right. And then, we’re still seeing the suicide rates go up and in our youth right now, I believe suicide is the first or second. Either the first or the second leading cause of death in ages I think it was like 12 to 25. It’s very scary and sad how rampant this problem is becoming. I can’t help but think that, obviously, there's gut issues. We have an over toxic world. There's 80,000 new man-made chemicals in the last 40 years. The environment, the milieu, the day-to-day existence is toxic compared to what it was one generation, two generations ago. 

So, we are facing a different world. Our biology is facing a different world than our grandparents. But at the same time, we have to look back and go, how is it that for many generations, we could live through the tough times and grow and learn and support each other and create an ecosystem of support and growth? Then now, we are more isolated than ever. We are more depressed than ever. We have incredibly high suicide rates. The first thing we’re given when we go to a doctor is a drug that has a bunch of side effects.

[00:28:38] Dr. Michael Biamonte: That's the swing that we’ve had in the last 50 years where instead of self-reliance, we have entitlement—and entitlement also offers people these drugs, unfortunately.

[00:28:50] Ashley James: So, the purpose of having you on today isn’t to make people who are on these drugs feel guilty. That's the exact opposite.

[00:28:55] Dr. Michael Biamonte: No of course.

[00:28:57] Ashley James: You help patients all the time to get so healthy that they’re no longer on these medications and that they also feel freedom and they feel amazing again emotionally and mentally. I want to clarify something you talked about before we move on to how you go about doing this. When you said around the world 65 and older, I think you said, what was it, like 2 million people die of psychiatric drugs.

[00:29:23] Dr. Michael Biamonte: What I was referring is that in the developed world, and the developed part of the world as opposed to the underdeveloped, you have so many more people dying from psychiatric drugs than you do in the underdeveloped parts in the world. It’s primarily because the drugs are unavailable in underdeveloped parts of the world. The book I was talking about before was Deadly Psychiatry and Organized Denial by Peter Gøtzsche. He talks about psychiatric drugs kill approximately half a million Americans over the age of 65 every year. That's horrifying!

[00:29:55] Ashley James: Wow. What is killing them exactly? 

[00:30:01] Dr. Michael Biamonte: What’s killing them is a combination of things. But it’s in part the side effects of the drugs. The drugs cause various side effects in the cardiovascular system and completely damage the gut health. So, then you have whatever problems you then want to postulate from gut health coming from that. You also have mass suicides that have occurred in these people. The FDA trials for Prozac, they covered up. And I know they covered it up because I have the actual reports from Eli Lilly. They covered up so many suicides that occurred in people on the Prozac trials. Why that occurs, you still hear it nowadays on TV. You turn on the TV and the big joke is the pharmaceutical commercial goes on and it lists a hundred million side effects that you could have. They have children playing in the park on the background, you know.

But it’s understanding how the drugs works, gives you a better understanding of why people die from them and why there are suicides. The typical antidepressant, your SSRI, which is an uptake inhibitor of serotonin, it doesn’t work by boosting your serotonin. It boosts by restricting it. Prozac actually stops your brain’s reabsorption of serotonin in order to make the serotonin receptor sites in your brain more acute and more excitable. So, it’s creating a deficiency to try to make something create like a sparring effect. The idea behind the drugs is that if you block the brain’s ability to reabsorb serotonin, then the brain has to do a much better job with the amount of serotonin it has. That works in some people. But in other people, it doesn’t work. It causes a crashing serotonin deficiency which is why of the side effects you’ll hear them talk about when they discuss Prozac or SSRI side effects is suicide or extreme massive depression.

[00:32:08] Ashley James: If you're stopping, blocking the cells from uptaking the… I mean, could see maybe if they did that temporarily like give you Prozac for a week and then take you off of it to try to resensitize the cells, but to keep you on it, how would keeping you always on it resensitize the cells to uptaking serotonin?

[00:32:29] Dr. Michael Biamonte: It doesn’t. Which is why these drugs ultimately are a failure. It’s in part a lot of politicians and bureaucrats that work in the industry have allowed this go on. There's the chemical imbalance myth. I call it a myth. But you hear these for years. You’ve been hearing the doctors quote that this chemical imbalance exists. Well, I can tell you about the chemical imbalance from the viewpoint of really scientific viewpoint of someone who tests. But in big pharma and psychiatrists, they for decades have claimed that the mentally ill have this chemical imbalance but yet, there has never been one single test or one single study that’s ever confirmed anything that they’ve said. In the British Psychology Society, there's a report in there, very interesting. It goes on to say that the chemical imbalance of neurotransmitters such as serotonin has remained unproven.

Now, I can tell you, however, from the viewpoint of someone who actually tests people that when I test people who come to me who are on these drugs or who have these issues, we will occasionally find a person who does have the serotonin deficiency. So, I can say, I am at liberty and I can say with authority that I can find a chemical imbalance in some of these people. But I’m testing them and the difference between myself and other practitioners, particularly psychiatrists, is they never test anyone. They don’t even know that these tests exist. But I can occasionally test someone and find their serotonin is low or their cortisol is too high or I can find some type of neurotransmitter imbalance and thank God for the work of the late Dr. Gottfried Kellermann from Neuroscience Labs who formulated an entire line of nutritional supplements that are all based on some of the patterns that you find in these neurotransmitter urine tests that are available by Functional Labs. His nutritional formulas are aimed at normalizing these imbalances. If your dopamine is too high, your dopamine is too low or whatever, your serotonin, he developed formulas which you can use on people that actually would balance it. He’s not doing something that’s hokey pokey where he has supplements and they’re starving the brain of these nutrients. He’s actually giving the person the precursors of these nutrients. He discovered that there are many herbs that work to excite those neurotransmitter receptor sites. So, he can accomplish with his formulas a natural way of going about what these drugs are doing in a destructive way.

[00:35:28] Ashley James: Fascinating, what you just said. You said psychiatrists don’t test.

[00:35:33] Dr. Michael Biamonte: No. I dare anyone to email or call in on this show who’s had a psychiatrist, not a functional medical doctor. I have never heard of, and if you go through all the psychiatrist data, if you go through the DSM-V, you look at all these books, you're not going to find any mention of any testing that's recommending or any protocol for testing. It doesn’t exist. They don’t do it.

[00:36:01] Ashley James: So they go based on your symptoms like “oh yeah, I can clearly see this person’s depressed,” or, “I’m diagnosing this person with bipolar based on what they’re sharing with me and their behavior,” and then they just put them on drugs and they don’t test them to see could there be a different imbalance.

There's one of my naturopathic mentors often find some people who are misdiagnosed with bipolar who have out-of-control blood sugar swings.

[00:36:26] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Or hormonal imbalances. That's another huge one in women. In women, PMS. They're constantly putting women on all these psychiatric drugs for PMS. Where the woman would be better off taking zinc and vitamin B6. She would get more relief from her PMS doing that than taking these drugs. 

[00:36:45] Ashley James: Fascinating. Yeah, since the last two years, I upped my zinc and I have noticed that I don’t have any symptoms. I always get surprised when my period comes because I have zero symptoms.

[00:36:59] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Well, zinc and B6 are cofactors to progesterone. They help mobilize progesterone. Normally, when you think of PMS, you think of high estrogen to progesterone ratio or estrogen dominance. And B6 and zinc help smooth that out. They help bolster progesterone.

[00:37:16] Ashley James: Wow. That's just fascinating. So, when comes to you and they have depression, what’s your first few questions for them?

[00:37:30] Dr. Michael Biamonte: My first few questions is why. Why do you have depression? What’s the situation? Who’s involved in this situation? A lot of times, they’ll rattle off names immediately. “Well, I’m depressed because my business partner is doing this.” “I’m depressed because my spouse is doing this or my child does this or my neighbor does this…” A lot of times they’ll just ring it right off. In that situation, I encourage them to handle the real-life situation they have and not take a pill and go hide in the closet.

When a person can’t come up with what it is, then we will do different testing if that's their main problem. A lot of times you get patients with candida come in and they talk about depression very often. So, if that’s the case, we’re going to treat the candida and see if the depression goes away in that line. But let’s say the person just comes in, he’s depressed, he doesn’t know why, he doesn’t really have any other outstanding physiological symptoms. Well, sure, then we’ll go ahead and we’ll do a neurotransmitter test. We’ll check out his blood sugar, check out his hormones, and 9 out of 10 times we’re going to find there’s a physiological reason which flies in the face of the gene finding theory that for years, psychiatrists have been saying that genetic factors have a substantial role in mental illness and even says in the DSM-V but yet, in actuality, there's no evidence that this is true. As a matter of fact, what was his name, David Kupfer several decades ago said we’re still waiting to discover biological and genetic markers for mental illness. They still haven’t found this. That was in a taskforce that I think he was the chair of.

So, they throw these things out, these things become catchphrases. Chemical imbalance. Genetic defects that lead to mental… they throw these things that they become catchwords but when you actually pull the string and look into them, there is no evidence behind them that they exist. 

[00:39:42] Ashley James: Tell us a bit more about the neurotransmitter testing that you do when someone has depression and you're suspecting that there might be an imbalance.

[00:39:53] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Well, we do a urine test that they're available through several labs. I believe Great Plains, Doctor’s Data, and Genova Labs easily offer them. Those are the bigger labs. They offer, it’s a urine collection. The urine collection goes to the lab, the lab looks for the neurotransmitters. There’s a certain amount of interpretation skill needed because sometimes, high levels of neurotransmitters in urine can indicate a loss of the neurotransmitter. So, let’s say you find a high amount of serotonin. The high amount of serotonin may not mean they have a lot. It might mean they’re losing it. But there's usually a pattern involved in that. Like very often, you’ll see the person has high cortisol which blocks serotonin, so you can see they have high cortisol and then high serotonin. Well, in that case, you know that the high cortisol is blocking the serotonin and causing a loss of it. So, that's what I mean by there's a certain amount of interpretation skill. But for the most part, when you do that test, it lays out all the neurotransmitters and show you the ratios between the ones that are very important that work together. It lets you see what’s high and what’s low. So, then you have an idea if there’s any actual evidence and reality that the person has an imbalance with the neurotransmitters. More often than not, when we find these imbalances and we put them on the right nutritional support, they feel better. 

[00:41:17] Ashley James: Interesting that high cortisol blocks serotonin. I’m just trying to think of why that would be because your body needs to be in fight or flight mode and not in like super happy mode.

[00:41:27] Dr. Michael Biamonte: No, it’s a matter of the receptor sites. Cortisol jams up the serotonin receptor sites. 

[00:41:33] Ashley James: They fight for the receptor sites.

[00:41:35] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yeah, cortisol blocks the receptor sites so the serotonin then can’t go and attach itself to the receptor site that easily. So, it’s not being utilized so it then builds up and then it’s excreted in your urine. 

[00:41:48] Ashley James: So, someone who let’s say have high cortisol because they’ve been chronically stressed out and it doesn’t have to be emotional or mental stress, it can also be physical stress like the body’s fighting let’s say a chronic candida infection. Their body is in a state of stress, they have higher than normal cortisol levels. Maybe they're also not sleeping well at night, maybe they're using alcohol to manage their “stress”, so they're doing things that increase cortisol and then they go to a doctor and they say “I’m really depressed and I have sleep problems” and the doctor puts them on an SSRI. Their body is making enough serotonin but maybe even trying to make more serotonin, but the cortisol is blocking it and then they take a drug because the doctor did no testing at all to figure out the root cause. Then they're taking an SSRI that’s then blocking the serotonin further, pushing them further into being out of balance. 

[00:42:46] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yes, this is true. I’d give you one from the backdoor. There was a patient I had for years. She finally moved away, she moved to California but for years, I was treating this woman. Every September, her hormone tests would start to go out of balance. I asked her millions of questions as to what’s going on and she never came up with the answer until finally, I asked her, well, what’s different about this time of year than any other time of year. Then she suddenly blurted out the L’eggs Mini Marathon. So I said, “alright, tell me more.” She says, “Well, every year I run the L’eggs Mini Marathon in New York City, so I start training for it in August and the race is in October.” That was exactly coincidental with when her cortisol and other hormones started to go out of balance. So, from the training she was doing, the running she was doing, which you could say an excess of what the average person would do, that was raising her cortisol. So you see, it could be something that innocent. 

[00:44:01] Ashley James: You need to do the deep dive. This is why it’s so dangerous at times to go to a traditional medical doctor or go to a head doctor and say, “I got depression” without doing the deep dive. These band-aids are causing more damage than good.

[00:44:23] Dr. Michael Biamonte: A colleague of mine wrote an article called Why Your Insurance is Making You Sick. Backtracking on the whole thing, he was pointing out that people will go to their doctors their insurance will cover. A lot of these doctors don’t know what they’re doing, so by engaging in the doctor that's going to be covered by their insurance, they're actually getting sicker because they're not going to the doctor who would find out what was really going on. 

[00:44:48] Ashley James: Ha! That is so sad. So, we talked a bit about depression. What other mental health situations have you been able to help resolve to the point where they’ve been able to get off all their meds?

[00:45:02] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Well, we can go down the list of the names—bipolar, schizophrenia. They're all basically, as someone like you who’s read the DSM, basically these are all made-up situations for the purpose of being able to find a drug to sell. If someone really wants to get into this, there's a video you can watch called Marketing Madness. If you go to the website, you’ll find this video. It’s maybe 3 or 4 hours long and it rips apart the entire scam of psychiatric medications and the whole scam of psychiatry, it breaks it all down to the point where you appreciate the title, it’s Marketing Madness. They’re marketing insanity and the solution they have for you are these drugs. As the old saying goes, the two worst things you can ever do is number one, kill the patient, and number two, cure them. Because if you cure them, then he’s off your list to sell the drugs to. 

But to answer your question, you know, I don’t like to get into the terminology. The terminology is only good for recognition. Everyone can agree upon a recognition of a set of symptoms perhaps. But one of the major things that I’ve practiced as a clinical ecologist, because I consider a lot of what to do to be clinical ecology, we work with a lot of children with autism. There is a definite set pattern in what happens with autism. It’s very simple. In fact, it’s too simple. It’s so simple that people can’t believe it. But the components of autism start out with a child who’s born, who’s genetically compromised as far as his ability to detoxify. Then you put that child in an environment that’s toxic or you give him silver amalgam fillings in his mouth. Or you vaccinate him with thimerosal. So, you then make this child whose detoxification is compromised toxic. He can’t detoxify. It affects him neurologically.

A lot of these things like thimerosal and the vaccinations, and then if the child is repeatedly put on antibiotics, he develops candida. Now, from candida he develops leaky gut. So, now he’s autoimmune, he’s got candida. Now, the parents are wondering, “Gee, he reacts strange to foods, this child. He’s got this autism, he has this neurological… but he reacts crazy to different foods.” And it’s not all the time. So, now you mix candida in there, which candida is the big wild card, you never know what’s going to happen next. And it’s that the formula for it is that simple. The child develops candida, develops leaky gut, he becomes chemically sensitive. He becomes allergic. And here you have your standard profile of the autistic child. And it can be reversed, and it has been reversed.

I worked for many years with Jenny McCarthy. Jenny McCarthy was a patient of mine for years. As a matter of fact, Jenny McCarthy wrote the liner chronicles on my book The Candida Chronicles. She wrote the back page. We find as we found with many children, you find that they’re either mercury toxic or copper toxic. Because thimerosal, it’s an alloy, it’s a combination of copper, mercury, and zinc. Now, zine is more of a nutritional element, so the body has a better chance of using up the zinc that might be in the metal. But it’s not true of mercury. Mercury has really no biological functions at all. It’s strictly a toxin. Copper can have biological functions. It’s an essential element. But when it rises to high, it becomes just as toxic as any other heavy metal. 

You start with that. It’s right there. You have loads of trouble. But that explains why. See, years ago, this is the thing that only thinking people can arrive at if they sat down and mudded over this a bit. A hundred years ago, the environment, as you were stating earlier in the show, was much cleaner. You didn’t have the environmental challenges that we have nowadays. So, maybe 150 years ago, something like that, children who were born with these problems detoxifying weren’t challenged by their environment. They weren’t vaccinated. They didn’t have amalgam fillings in their mouth. So, their poor detoxification abilities were not being challenged. That's why these new diseases developed. That's a little microcosm of why it happens. That's why we have illnesses now we didn’t have 100 years ago. The environment is more toxic. And instead of coming up with new drugs to cover up the symptoms of these things, what the people should be doing is they should be taking companies like Monsanto to test for developing all these harmful chemicals that really haven’t been tested and their safety has never really been assured or guaranteed, and they throw them on the market and they're all over the place. Anyone who’s done any weed killing with Monsanto products is going to know that by now.

Soldiers, people coming back from Vietnam, I can’t tell you how many vets I’ve had who were exposed to Monsanto’s Agent Orange, who came back with all types of problems with their lungs and their heart. We had to develop an Agent Orange detoxification program for these people so we could detox them from this chemical. When they start to detox from it, it’s amazing the changes they go through. It’s really amazing.

But eventually, they start to feel better and their chemistry is improved. That's the thing. Anybody can feel better. You can shoot up heroin and feel better. The real bottom line is, do you get healthier? Is there scientific evidence in your bloodwork that your chemistries are improving? That's what we look for. That's what should be done. What I’m talking about should be the industry standard. And it’s not.

[00:51:21] Ashley James: There's another thing that Monsanto did, and my friend is involved in a lawsuit. It has completely destroyed her life. It’s left her in a wheelchair and left her daughter incredibly sick as well. This is just a small town outside of Seattle. There was an alternative school called Sky Valley, and there was an old building maybe built in the ‘60s or ’50s or ‘40s, something like that. But it was an older building. Children were dropping dead, children were getting cancer, teachers were getting cancer. One of the teachers entire jawbone just died suddenly. Crazy horrific things happening. In this town 40 minutes away from Seattle, what they come to find is that Monsanto made these chemicals, construction chemicals for the ballast, for the cocking, it’s through the entire building and it’s very hard to clean up. They said that they cleaned it up but the school board did a coverup. Then, they said, “Okay, it’s safe to come back into that school.” It wasn’t safe. Now, there's a huge lawsuit going on, massive lawsuit, and I think the teachers, they have several different lawsuits. The teachers have one lawsuit, the parents have another. And the teachers won. But they settled that at court or something.

Anyways, it’s all messy. It’s been going on for years. But what I discovered, and I’ll find the article and link it in the show notes. The Associated Press did an amazing… it takes like an hour to read this article. It’s so well-researched. They did this amazing expose where they traveled around the United States and discovered that these dangerous older school buildings, very dangerous for the health of the children because it is killing the children, mostly still exists in impoverished areas now. Monroe isn’t impoverished, it just is an outlier, but most of these buildings that are full of these toxic chemicals that are causing horrific neurological damaging cancer to these children, but the children were susceptible because they're smaller I guess, but also the teachers, most of it is in impoverished areas, most of it is areas where there’s larger groups of people of color, and they know that the buildings are toxic but they don’t have the budget to do anything about it. Because they all feel very powerless in this situation, no one is stepping up to fight back. 

So hopefully, with these lawsuits, it’ll be enough to sort of get everything rolling. But here’s the thing. We walk around trusting the building we’re walking into is safe because we live in the United States or we live in Canada or we live in England. You live in a country where you expect that the building you work in, the house you live in, the car you drive, the food you eat, the air you breathe, the water you drink, we expect blindly trusting that this would be safe for us just like the medications we take. We have so much trust. Sometimes I guess we’re very naïve in that. Without living in constant fear because that wouldn’t be healthy either, we need to do our own due diligence. I have a whole episode on toxic construction materials and how to have a nontoxic building versus toxic buildings. It’s all very fascinating. Same with food and how to have healthier food, how to have healthy water. 

But when it comes to when you already have the toxicity in your body and you have these symptoms, you don’t even know. You don’t know that you have high copper. And that could be why you're feeling depressed or feeling off or feeling lethargic or having the brain fog. Then we go to the wrong doctor. They don’t do the test, they just rattle off some symptoms, they put us on whatever drug the drug rep told them is good for those symptoms. And we still have the toxicity. We still have the underlying problem. We get worse and worse and we end up feeling guilty and shame that we’re broken, and a lot of times, not all the time but many times these people feel like they're a burden on their friends and family and the world would be better off without them.

[00:55:54] Dr. Michael Biamonte: And unfortunately, I can never leave a conversation on this subject without mentioning this because it’s something that really, I took very seriously. When President Obama was running for office, his New York campaign summit was right next door to me. We helped them out in the beginning, we offered them, you know, they needed a table, they needed a chair, they needed this and that, we very easily gave it to them. The people there asked me about what we did. I asked them, what is the senator’s viewpoint about Monsanto and about GMO foods. I was told quite overtly that he was intending on outlawing GMO foods and getting rid of Monsanto and blah, blah, blah. This was great. Then several years later, while he was president, he signed the Monsanto Protection Act. The Monsanto Protection Act, if you look it up, limits the liability that Monsanto has. So, when you're talking about these people suing Monsanto, there's only a limited amount that they could get because this act kicks in and it reduces the liability Monsanto has. Monsanto has no liability at all. You can’t sue them and say that any of the GMO foods that they make made you sick. You can’t do that. In terms of all these chemicals, there's limited liability. 

So, when we start looking at who we’re going to vote in office, we also have to really take a look at this. Who’s going to protect people like Monsanto? Who’s going to protect the person on the street that you're talking about? 

[00:57:37] Ashley James: My church has become very politically active, which is unlike a church, right? Lately, churches have been silent. Something my church has brought up is, you know, the churches that were silent in Germany, the Nazis actually went after the churches first. Not everyone knows the history of this. How is it that such a horrific thing could overtake a country? They went after the churches first. They threatened them and kept them silent. You keep your worship inside the church, you don’t do anything outside the church. You don’t do anything active. You just do your little thing inside the church and stay silent. So many churches have stayed silent.

[00:58:20] Dr. Michael Biamonte: There's a formula, do you know that? You can find this. The Nazis, they actually had a formula of what you did to take over a country or to demean the people. That is one of the first things you do, is you go after religion, you silence the churches. The next thing is you take their guns away from them. Then you make them toxic. That was quite common from when the Nazis attacked the country. Prior to their attack, they would dump fluoride in their drinking water. 

[00:58:50] Ashley James: Wow. Which is a neurotoxin, right, in high doses. And it causes people to be docile. I don’t know all the symptoms but I also know that it disrupts thyroid function.

[00:59:05] Dr. Michael Biamonte: You then start starving them of protein because starving them from protein makes them less aggressive. You take protein away from people, they lose muscle tone, their testosterone drops, they become less aggressive, less motivated. So, they had it all down, the Nazis. They had their whole formulation down. And unfortunately, you're seeing a lot of that getting repeated nowadays in trying to control people.

[00:59:32] Ashley James: With our church, our pastor said, “I don’t care what side. Republican or Democrat, I don’t care. I’m voting for the individual person that I believe is going to do the most good that’s going to help the most people, that's going to, for example, outlaw GMOs or not help these big organizations like Monsanto.” Unfortunately, we have to go based on trust because like you said, you were told one thing and then he did another. And protecting these major organizations that are causing and have a history of causing a huge amount of toxic damage to the world, it’s sick and wrong and very sad and I’m not for either side. I’m pragmatic. I want to see a better world.

[01:00:25] Dr. Michael Biamonte: I agree. I’m a libertarian. I’m registered as a libertarian. 

[01:00:31] Ashley James: The idea that what we deserve is we deserve health. It’s a right. I want that for everyone. I want a cleaner, healthier, safer world for everyone. I know you talked about not wanting to necessarily go based on labels because that is the box they like to put people in just to give them drugs. But when it comes to suicidal thoughts and ideation and wanting to help someone to avoid suicide, have you ever had clients who you felt might be suicidal and are there any common things that are associated with that or imbalance is associated with that that you can help them with? 

[01:01:14] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yeah. One of the first things you’ll find is that they're on an SSRI. So getting them off the SSRI and getting them on 5HTP or any of the precursors to serotonin is very important because you want to make sure they're not suicidal due to extreme dips in their serotonin. Usually, you want to get them out of their environment because unfortunately, people with these conditions are prey for other people around them to crap on essentially. So, getting them out of their environment is just as valid a therapy as anything else. So you get them good nutritional support, you get them out of their environment, get them into some other area where they're dealing with people who are not constantly invalidating them or causing them trouble, you’ll see a tremendous improvement in them and it’ll be safe.

[01:02:07] Ashley James: Dr. Hammer, he did Meta-Medicine. Dr. Hammer saw the centrifugal rings on the brain scans when not using the contrast dye and determine that the edema on the brain was specific areas were associated with specific… he did over 30,000 cases, were always related to specific parts of body. So, breast cancer, that sort of thing. He determined that a trauma would have had to happened in the last four years that would have triggered it. His biggest intervention was to take them out of their environment. So many times he’d see, if he took someone and moved them to a different country, just take them away from the friends or the family or the job or whatever it was that was stressing them out or triggered them that they were able to heal much quicker and in some cases, go into full remission. It’s so interesting.

[01:02:58] Dr. Michael Biamonte: The present time and environment of the patient acts as a constant restimulation to their illness from the time the illness was probably conceived going forward. So, it’s a valid form of therapy to change their environment but to hopefully to a better one. You wouldn’t want to take sick person and put them on the titanic. That wouldn’t be the right idea to change the environment. But that’s the concept. You get them away from the re-stimulators that are occurring in their environment. You get their nutrition improved to the point where they’re at least not going to be eating toxic food or not going to be in a toxic environment and then if lucky enough, if there's a practitioner like myself there, you can test the person and find out that if there are any extreme toxicities, there are tests that are offered by Great Plains Labs. Great Plains Labs offers a test which will check you for mold toxins, will check you for environmental toxins, will check how well you can detoxify. You can also look at neurotransmitter panels and do all these things and you can get a lab done for a person. The person would be in remarkably better shape in just a few months.

[01:04:13] Ashley James: I feel like we have to touch on this subject although it is such a sensitive one. A friend of mine lost her child who was a teenager to suicide less than two years ago. This child who was born a female decided they were not a female and did a transition to appearing as and functioning as a male. We see that the suicide rates for those who feel that they weren’t born the right gender, again, I want to be very sort of sensitive to this subject because the suicide rates are incredibly high and the statistics are that even those who transition, even those who get operations, the suicide rates remain high. Have you had any experience working with those and is there anything that we can do to help them?

[01:05:14] Dr. Michael Biamonte: I have actually more experience than you would think. It’s remarkable that in some of these people that make the transition, some of them are totally fine for their entire lives, they have no problems. Others do have these issues and you would have to then say, well, then obviously this is not the answer. If this was the answer, they wouldn’t still have these compulsions to harm themselves. 

But then on the other hand, I’ve seen that there are some people physically who don’t handle the transition well physically from a biological standpoint and metabolic standpoint. Their bodies just don’t do well at all. They will reject the hormones that they're taking. They can seem to never can find the right balance or dosage of any of the medications. But yet, there are others I’ve seen that did fantastic. So, I think we’re down to this is what the psychiatrists don’t want to hear. But what you're down to is rolling up your sleeves, sitting down with the person and digging in and finding out what’s really going on as opposed to having them come in your office for 10 minutes, hearing their problems and giving them, as you said before, the pill that the drug sells and says it’s the right one for them.

[01:06:32] Ashley James: It takes doing the deep dive because we’re complex. We’re complex. I heard once that the functions with inside a single cell are more complex than the city of Manhattan. So, if you think about if you’ve ever been to New York City and you see just the honking and the noise and the deliveries and the taxis and just everything going on, that is a simpler system than a single cell. We have 37.2 trillion cells in our body, we’re an incredibly complex ecosystem that is affected by energy. The energy of objects nearby, we’re affected by water, we’re affected by the air we breathe. It’s so sensitive. You climb up to Mt. Everest, your muscles will begin to seize, right? We need a perfect homeostasis. When something throws us off, it’s enough to throw everything off-kilter and yet, we think that we can go into an office, spend 10 minutes with someone, take a drug and it’s going to just solve the problem. This is the marketing we’ve been told. It’s ridiculous. We should be and practitioners should be willing to do that deep dive with someone and not be afraid to do the deep dive with them. 

[01:07:46] Dr. Michael Biamonte: To really appreciate what you're saying, I again would have to mention to the listeners to go on the internet and go to and look up I think it’s a 3 or 4-hour video called Marketing Madness. Once you start watching this, you cannot stop. The data they give you is absolutely mind-boggling and they uncover and reveal the entire scam which is the whole psychiatric profession and the psycho pharmaceutical industry. It’s just incredible.

I guess it’s no coincidence the LA Times back in the ‘80s published one of these inserts that you could pull out. It was all about psychiatry. The interesting thing I learned from there just off the bat that I found very curious is that as a whole and a group, psychiatrists have the lowest SAT scores. Psychiatrists have the highest rate of suicides out of any profession. Psychiatrists also have the highest rate of being convicted for felonies out of any profession. 

[01:08:58] Ashley James: Wow.

[01:08:59] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Interesting. 

[01:09:04] Ashley James: And we bring our lives to these people. I don’t think that their entire profession is evil. But we just have to remember that they’re fallible, that we shouldn’t put them on a pedestal like we’ve been taught to do, like the marketing has taught us to worship these drugs and worship these people. Now again, if there's a drug that would stop someone from being suicidal, I’d want them on it, right?

[01:09:34] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yes, until you figure out as you said earlier.

[01:09:36] Ashley James: Right. If someone has to check them, and I’ve had friends who went, they have five kids, they are like, “I am going to kill myself today and I don’t want to do that,” and they’ve checked themselves into the hospital, they spent two weeks in the hospital, be put on some lithium or something, put on some kind of medication, and then they're like, “Now, I got to get my life in order.” A few of my friends have done it but one friend in particular ended up finding, she found a few support groups, she changed her entire lifestyle, she had to change her diet, she had to do a deep dive into her life. She still has five kids and she has a sixth one on the way and she moved across the country. She’s done a ton of changes. But she changed her diet, she’s seeing a therapist. She’s going to two different support groups. She’s removed a lot of addictive behaviors out of her life. She had to do the work. But sometimes it starts with going “I’m about to break and I really don’t want to leave my children, but it’s like I don’t see an end to this and I’m going to check myself in.” Then you have to do the deep work beyond that. Sometimes it does take that immediate intervention. 

Unfortunately, some people wait till it gets that bad. But hopefully, listening to you, we’re not going to wait to get that bad that we can make diet and lifestyle changes and even contact you. So you work with clients around the world, you do telemedicine.

[01:11:08] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Let me add this. Don’t be complacent about your environment. I’ve had quite a few patients over the years who under my treatment were improving but they then moved. They told me that moving made a bigger difference in their health than actually what I was doing with them. When it was examined, when I looked at that, it’s interesting but there are certain things you’ll find. If someone lives in New Mexico in Nevada, that area, where nuclear testing takes place, traditionally, when we do tissue mineral analysis on people, and the test comes back showing high levels of uranium. Now this is not that they're radioactive, this is inert uranium. The first thing I ask is well, do they live in New Mexico, Nevada, that whole area? Ninety percent of the time, they do. There's a high amount of uranium that's inert, it’s not radioactive, but there's a higher amount of uranium in those areas that people will absorb. Uranium, even though it’s inert and not radioactive still has physiological effects. It affects adversely your digestive system, it affects you neurologically. There's a whole list of uranium toxicity symptoms. 

Also, another patient I’ve had for quite a long time, she had some strange elements showing and had beryllium, which is something you don’t see that often. She had high levels of beryllium and chromium and different elements showing. We never could figure out what it was and one day, she happened to realize that about every six months she would notice that the cars in her neighborhood and the windows of houses in the neighborhood had this white film on them. So, she collected the film and she had it analyzed and she found that this film was high in beryllium and chromium and all these elements that we find in her. So, she then started to investigate and she was very active in her community, she was active politically and the school board and everything. She researched where this was coming and sure enough, there was some industrial complex about six miles from where she lived that was dumping this stuff in the air.

[01:13:39] Ashley James: Oh my gosh.

[01:13:43] Dr. Michael Biamonte: I have dozens of other similar stories. But the moral of all these stories is don’t become too complacent about where you live if you're ill. Investigate if you're ill. If your area has any history of chronic toxicity, if there's anything in the water, if there's anything that’s in the water, eventually it’s going to make its way to the land. If you're doing gardening or you're doing any kind of work like this where you're getting in the dirt, you're going to start absorbing this stuff. It doesn’t have to be in the air although the air is the easiest carrier. But check out your environment to see what’s going on there. Because your environment might be making you sick and you don’t know what your doctor doesn’t know.

[01:14:28] Ashley James: I’m reminded of this. You might have heard this. Let me know if you have. But there were these guys that went to I believe it was Papua New Guinea and they were doing trading. They gave them a bunch of corn and grains that these people had never eaten before. This population didn’t have a history of mental illness but after they gave them, I mean, besides what you get from being a cannibal for those certain areas, but in terms of like bipolar or schizophrenia, they noticed that they were having mental health issues after being exposed to like rice and corn. Same with Hawaii that the ancient Polynesians who had never had grains, they didn’t eat grains, that wasn’t in their diet, they ate tubers and fish and lots of fruit. They were given grains and mental health which had never been recorded in their history was then found. They took these findings and they did an experiment in England with a psychiatric ward primarily that had schizophrenics, they removed grains from their diet and saw that many of the went into remission and had either less or sometimes no schizophrenic episodes just from removing grains from their diet.

[01:15:53] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yes, these are very, well, at least to me, pretty well-known stories. That especially you’ll read in the books of the doctors who are very anti-gluten or anti-grain. It’s very true. Very true. 

[01:16:06] Ashley James: Do you think that their major component is that it’s not feeding the candida that is having an impact on the brain becomes of the connection, the leaky gut, like you had mentioned before that there was these neurotransmitters in the gut, but also, that there’s a nerve that goes straight from the brain into the gut?

[01:16:29] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Well, that would be presuming that these people had candida which we don’t necessarily know that they did. So, we would have to look at really… the most obvious thing is these people right off the bat, when they’re eating grains, they’re probably blood type O’s. So initially, you're introducing a fluid which probably hasn’t been in their genetic line because these foods are not native to those areas. Once you do that, you don’t really know what’s going to happen because it’s like putting someone on another planet. You don’t know how they’re going to react to the food. You don’t know if the food allergy is going to cause like extreme irritation or break down their intestinal lining, which is leaky gut is then going to… leaky gut is known to cause many psychiatric-like symptoms in people. So, we could stop just there. But when you go further and you look at allergies that you can get from grains, they’ve been well known to affect the brain.

Pfeiffer, again going back to Karl Pfeiffer from the Brain Biocenter, he did quite a lot of work on that, quite a few of the people who I would tend to call the earlier pioneers in nutrition, did a lot of work showing that grains would affect people in this manner. So, like I said, you're introducing something to a line genetically which it’s not native to. These people never had it before. You don’t know how they're going to be affected by it. 

[01:18:04] Ashley James: Right. Is there anything you’d like to say to those who have or are struggling right now with emotional issues, maybe they're on medication or they’ve been considering medication, is there anything you’d like to say to them directly?

[01:18:24] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Yes. As you’ve been hearing through this broadcast, going on these medications is haphazardous and dangerous. That's not your first choice. Regardless of how society looks at these things, how they're accepted, when you really get into the scientific aspect of it, it’s not condoned. You really want to take a look at the things we’ve talked about here today. This is where you want to go first before you start taking medicines which the fact the insurance company pays for them and the fact that they're advertised on TV doesn’t mean they're safe, it doesn’t mean they're good. We can start advertising heroine on TV and have your insurance company pay for it. That doesn’t mean it’s good for you either.

So, I would say to them, please look into the things we talked about today. Make that your priority because a pill doesn’t fix your life. If you have a problem in your life, handle your life, don’t take a pill and go hide in the closet. 

[01:19:32] Ashley James: There's one thing we didn’t touch on and I want to make sure we touch on it, and that's those with panic attacks and anxiety. Oftentimes they feel like they're dying. I’ve worked with several clients who they have to go lie down and their heart is pounding, their palms are sweating, they feel like they're dying and they're terrified that they're dying and so they end up popping a pill. Can you speak to those who have anxiety and are choosing to be on anxiety meds because they feel like otherwise they die?

[01:20:00] Dr. Michael Biamonte: Well, the first thing you always do is go to your doctor and you want to see if there's a tumor, benign or otherwise on your pituitary gland or on your adrenal glands. You want to have your adrenal hormones tested. Not a blood test in the morning where it’s one take. You want to do several blood work over the period of 24 hours or you want to do a 24-hour urine test which is going to measure your adrenal hormones to see if there's any surge in the hormones. You want to look to see how your magnesium levels are. Most importantly, you want to look for toxic metals. Because metals like cadmium, lead, arsenic, nickel, and iron, when any of these are in excess, they stimulate areas of the brain particularly the amygdala of the brain which when you overstimulate that area, you end up having the panic attack-like symptoms. 

You want to look for physical causes. Just simple being medicated is not handling your problem. As you would assume, if there's an underlying problem there and you're not addressing it, well that underlying problem you're not addressing today, in 20 years from now, can multiply exponentially to give you all types of other problems. 

[01:21:18] Ashley James: It’s reassuring to know that there's a path that with working with someone who does functional medicine like yourself, that you work like an engineer and you go through and do a deep dive and help that person become balanced again in their body. Now, they still have to do the work in their life. There's emotional and mental work to do, and you're going to make sure that you help them with the balancing of their body so that they no longer have this. We have to really listen to the symptoms of the body as the language of the body, the body is speaking to us if we have depression. We have problems sleeping, if we have outburst of anger or panic attacks. We need to take these symptoms seriously and go, okay, we’ve got to go through and is there something in my life externally, is there something in my self-talk internally, is there something in my biochemistry that's going on or physiologically what’s going in. We got to do a deep dive. It takes the right practitioner. Like I love saying, you don’t take your car to an electrician. You don’t take your car to a plumber. You want to take your body to the right practitioner for the certain condition.

So, I love medical doctors for emergency medicine. If I have a broken arm or if I have certain types of infections, if I need emergency surgery, that's when I want allopathic medicine. But when I have a chronic situation, I want to go see someone who does a deep dive into functional medicine. That's why I love the work that you do and I think you're an amazing practitioner and I’m so excited that I’ve been able to share you with my listeners because I know you help so many people. So, thank you so much for coming on the show, Dr. Biamonte. Of course, listeners can go to your website, Is there anything you’d like to say to wrap up today’s interview?

[01:23:09] Dr. Michael Biamonte: No, I think that's it. But I do agree with you. If I break my arm, I’m not going to run in the house and start eating yogurt and think something is going to happen miraculously. You want to go to somebody who’s going to be able to address the problem correctly. There's so much on TV, people are so brainwashed by these companies, so, it makes it more difficult. But I completely agree with you. Your summation is people, they have to hold that to their hearts and their minds.

[01:23:40] Ashley James: Absolutely. Well, thank you again for coming on the show and talking about this very much needed conversation. I really appreciate the work you do and please come back anytime to continue to teach us. I love learning from you.

[01:23:56] Dr. Michael Biamonte: You're more than welcome and I certainly intend on doing so.

[01:23:59] Ashley James: Wasn’t that a fantastic interview with Dr. Michael Biamonte? I hope you enjoyed today’s episode and I hope it really helps you to gain clarity and direction on mental and emotional health. There are so many resources out there and I’ve seen so many people heal anxiety, depression, and bringing themselves back into balance. Even bipolar, I’ve seen people to bring back into balance where they feel even-kill again. 

Use the search function on my website. I do have a lot of other episodes about these especially anxiety. Please go to and just use the search function, type in anxiety, see all the episodes that come up. Lot of episodes, lot of great information, lot of great resources and tools. This is just the beginning. It’s just pulling you down the rabbit hole through the matrix, out of the matrix, down the rabbit hole. Then, I want to just arm you with all the resources and all the tools that’ll help. Make sure that you go to, get my Free Doctor course from holistic doctors who look to give you the foundations of health and then make sure you go to and get the free sample class from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition as well. I’m just showering you with gifts today. Make sure you get those. Of course, join the Facebook group, the Learn True Health Facebook group because so many resources, so many people are there to support you. It’d be great to have you be part of the community and join us there. Have yourself a fantastic rest of your day. Thank you so much for sharing this podcast with those you care about. Have a wonderful rest of your holiday season! I have a few other amazing episodes to post before we get to 500, so you still have some time, but if you have any testimonial to share at all, big or small, please send it to me. You can give me an audio, you can give me a video or you could just type it out. You can send it to or you can also message me on Facebook or put it in the Facebook group, would love to see you there.

Get Connected with Dr. Michael Biamonte!







Book by Dr. Michael Biamonte

The Candida Chronicles

Dec 9, 2022

Ozone Machine:


Listen to episode 484 for more info on why and how to use ozonated water made in your home for energy and mitochondrial function:



High-Quality NAD Brain Supplement:

Use coupon code LTH at


Listen to episode 460 about the benefits of high-quality NAD on cellular function, energy production, and mitochondrial health:



Sunlighten Sauna - the sauna Ashley uses, loves, and recommends:

Be sure to ask for the listener special!


Listen to episode 245 to learn from the founder of Sunlighten Sauna as to why this sauna is the best tool for your health journey:



The world's most effective Magnesium Soak:

Use coupon code LTH at


Listen to episode 294 to hear Kristen Bowen share her story of recovery and discovering the world's most absorbable form of magnesium:



Ashley's Favorite Spirulina and Chlorella:

Use coupon code LTH at


Listen to episode 487 and hear the latest science behind healing algie



Dr. Oz's book, After Covid: Optimize Your Health in a Changing World

"Our clinic is on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. We provide detailed lab work, IV therapy, peptide therapy, and nutritional protocols, including supplements."


493: How To Recover From Long Covid, Dr. Oz Garcia

When you experience long-haul COVID, it's important to be proactive in recovery, and it's also helpful to know how to plan for this kind of huge transition. In this episode, Dr. Oz Garcia talks exactly about that, which involves reducing toxins in your life, boosting nutrient density (as well as nutrient diversity), improving sleep quality, enhancing focus and concentration, and getting into the best shape of your life.

Ashley James and Dr. Oz Garcia


  • The novelty of the COVID virus
  • How Dr. Oz Garcia became his own patient zero
  • Supplements Dr. Garcia recommends
  • Oura Ring
  • Tracking heart rate variability
  • How long-haul COVID damages mitochondria and healing from it
  • NormaTec compression boots


Hello, true health seeker, and welcome to another exciting episode of the Learn True Health podcast. Boy, are you in for such a treat. We have an amazing guest on the show today, Dr. Oz Garcia, who used to be a marathon runner, incredibly healthy his entire life. He’s a holistic doctor, works in New York State, and he has a great clinic. I believe it’s in New York City where he does functional medicine and believes in nutraceuticals and really healthy eating. And he got hit with COVID, he almost died. And he tells a story of recovery of experiencing first-hand the worst of long-haul COVID, the long-haul symptoms that have lasted him months, that left him crawling on the floor only months before he was running marathons. This is something now we’re discovering so many people have to a certain extent. I myself have been healing from long-haul COVID. And we’re seeing it is a different animal, it’s a different creature that we’re facing similar to Epstein-Barr virus or mono. The body has been affected on multiple levels. Some have seen even the brain shrink. There’s been studies showing that the brain shrinkage is almost like brain damage and recovering from that, healing from that. Healing is possible. We need to recognize that the body has an innate God-given ability to heal itself. It’s this amazing, beautiful machine.

We are so intricate that cellular biologists say when they look at the cell, they still don’t fully understand the cell, but when you look at just one cell, now you are comprised of over 37.2 trillion cells in your body and yet, one single cell is more complex than everything going on in New York City. It is so complex. It is so beautiful, the dance that happens in your body. And we can heal ourselves. Now, modern medicine really has us duped. It says we have to wait to get sick, go to the doctor, get put on some drugs to force the body to do something and then there's all these spill-over side effects. And they don’t really focus on healing and completely restoring the body from any kind of chronic illness. That's not their wheelhouse and that's frankly not where their money is made. That's why you are listening to this podcast because we’re holistic, meaning we look to the whole body and the whole life of that person knowing that your mental, emotional, spiritual and physical health all affect each other, knowing that what you ate affects you. Even what you ate yesterday is affecting you now, of course it does. What you eat, how you sleep, even when you eat, how much you eat, whether it was organic or not, all of that plays into the cell’s health, how much joy you experience, how much support, connection and love you have in your life, whether you feel like you have a purpose in your life. All these things matter.

So, wonderful episode today because Dr. Oz Garcia goes into his journey where he was left for the first time in his life needing to rebuild his health. And he’s 70, I think he’s 71 now but, you know, at 70-71, he looks amazing by the way because he’s taken such great care of himself all his life, but here he is rebuilding his life, just learning how to walk again, let alone run a marathon again. So he shares what he did throughout his journey in the last year to recover his health and, of course, then go on to help his patients do the same. He does mention some things that I want to make sure you know about. We talk about ozone. I have a fantastic episode. These are resources for you if you have long-haul, if you're looking to heal, especially mitochondrial issues. We see that a lot of people after COVID experience. It’s almost like their mitochondria has been damaged. And this also can happen when people take antibiotics and take other drugs. Those other drugs that disrupt the mitochondria. Mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell. It is the part of your body throughout all your body that makes cellular energy ATP. The majority of our mitochondria, although it’s in all our cells is in the nervous system, in the brain. We really need mitochondria to function to have these other cells function. It is what makes the energy for our body. So whatever damages mitochondria damages the body and leaves us exhausted. So, we want to do everything we can to support the body in having healthy mitochondrial function and the entire Krebs cycle, everything that has to do with making energy for the body is really important. We need to get the good stuff in, get the bad stuff out and get out of the way. Let the body do what it needs to do, support the body in doing it, what it needs to do.

So, there's a fantastic ozone machine that you can get at home. Quite affordable. I thought ozone machines were thousands of dollars and they’ve really come down in price and it’s a little machine, smaller than a shoebox and it will make ozonated water and it’s safe to make in the home. Other machines are not safe. You had to leave the room because it’s not safe to inhale ozone. But this one degases it so it only goes into the water. And I have a whole episode on that. It’s episode 484. The links to everything I’m talking about now is going to be in the show notes of today’s podcast at or in the notes, wherever you're listening from. If you're listening from iTunes or Spotify, you're going to just go into the notes there in this episode and you’ll see it. So, check that one out. Of course, everything that I share, for the most part, I get a coupon code from these people, Learn True Health, the LTH coupon code. So always type in LTH and just see if they give us a discount because for the most part, I do get a discount for you guys. 

So, the ozone machine, you can just go straight if you want to check it out. It’s That's That's the ozonated water that you can make in your home. You can use it as a very safe disinfectant and you can also drink it and it only disrupts or kills the bad bacteria that is talked about in episode 484, but also, ozone hyperoxygenates the body and the cells in the body and it also has been known to help the mitochondria function better. And I had a personal experience with ozone that rocked my world. It took away the muscle weakness that I was experiencing post COVID and I thought that was really amazing.

The next one is NAD. You can go to, just the letter N, A and D. Listen to episode 460. We talk about NAD and how it helps energy production, cellular function, and especially mitochondrial health. It’s a really interesting interview. Today, that's one of the things that Dr. Oz Garcia talks about, ozone and NAD for his health journey. So go to and use coupon code LTH as well.

Sunlighten Sauna, we do talk about sauna therapy using heat and light therapy. Amazing. I love Sunglighten Sauna. It is part of my detox routine. It has been part of my detox routine for 4 years now. It has really helped me recover from heavy metal toxicity and also, it’s fantastic for the cardiovascular system, for the immune system. The benefits go on and on. There are so many studies about sauna therapy. What I like about Sunlighten Sauna, it’s actually low heat. You can get started sweating at about 130 degrees, so it’s very easy to breathe in there. You're not really feeling overly hot. It just feels nice and warm like a day at the beach and yet you're doing your best detoxing at that temperature and it also helps with the immune system hugely. We talk a bit about that in this interview that you're about to hear. You can go back and listen to episode 245 to hear the founder of Sunlighten Sauna and some of the benefits as to why Sunlighten is better than the other sauna companies out there because I did do my research when I was choosing my saunsa, and I am so glad that I chose Sunlighten over the other ones because it’s full spectrum, it’s ultra low EMF and nontoxic. 

And of course, if you decide you want to buy a Sunlighten Sauna, you can go to and there's a list of the benefits and the machines and all that. But if you end up calling them, make sure you mention that you heard it from my podcast because listeners get a huge discount. This month and the month of December, there’s an even bigger sale going on right now. I believe it’s up to $700 off plus free shipping, and they usually throw in a few other goodies. So, just say that I sent you and that you better get a good deal because I said, you know, and of course, you can always message me and let me know, or come join the Learn True Health Facebook group and let me know because I’ve had nothing but good experiences from them and I personally am friends with one of the managers there, so if you ever need any help with that, you just let me know. I’ll make sure you get the hookup.

Then, of course, my favorite magnesium soak. Go to episode 294 to hear Kristen Bowen’s story where she was having 30 seizures a day, unable to talk in a wheelchair. Her life had totally disintegrated after a surgery where they put some stuff in her that they said she wouldn’t be allergic to, and of course, now we know so much more but it caused her to become so unhealthy, she was on death store, eventually got surgeons to finally agree to take this stuff out of her, but there she was, she was left still very weak, very sick and she stumbled upon this particular type of magnesium from the Zechstein sea that allowed her… it was the biggest tool she used to recover her health and so she dedicated her life to making this I don’t want to say little anymore because her company has grown so much since I started talking about it. But it’s a family-run company and it’s very high quality. She has incredibly high standards like I do when it comes to what you put in your body. So you can go to, use coupon code LTH, get the magnesium soak. And my favorite thing to do is soak my feet in magnesium while in the sauna. Bada bing bada boom, you got 2 for 1. It’s great. We have several more episodes on the magnesium soak. The first one is 294 so you can go back and listen to that one. Make sure you use coupon code LTH anytime that you're at because she does give the listeners a great discount.

Thank you so much for being a listener. Thank you so much for sharing these episodes with those you care about. My mission is to help as many people as possible to no longer suffer. The needless suffering needs to stop. Man, I can tell you that long-haul COVID is no joke. It is suffering and it’s psychologically suffering as well because so many doctors, they don’t know what to do. They throw their hands up, they say maybe it’s all in your head. You don’t really feel like you're being taken seriously and a lot of them just don’t have the tools. They don’t have the tools because they don’t have the training and some of them have the hubris because, I don’t know, there's ego or they feel threatened because they don’t know the answer. They end up making us feel like it’s our fault. It’s so frustrating. But really, there's a whole world of holistic medicine and it’s completely separate from the mainstream medical system. And the mainstream medical system doesn’t want to acknowledge that there's all these amazing things that we can be doing outside of drugs and surgery. If you're suffering or you have a friend who’s suffering, please get them to listen to these episodes, tell them that there's hope. Tell them the body can heal itself. The body is amazing at healing itself. I was sick with so many different conditions. I had polycystic ovarian syndrome, I no longer have it. And I was told by so many doctors that you can’t get rid of it, you have it for the rest of your life. I had type 2 diabetes. I was told that that’s just it. You just have to be on these drugs for the rest of your life. I said no, I took the natural medicine route, I no longer have type 2 diabetes. That was actually the easiest thing to reverse out of all the issues I ever had. And I had it for years. I had out of control blood sugar for years. I had infertility. I was told I’d never have kids. And we have an amazing son. So, you can’t put these doctors on a pedestal and accept their truth as your truth. You need to fight for what you want in your life and if you want really good health, stop believing the limitations that other people put on you. Their belief system is their own and I believe you have an amazing ability to heal yourself, your body wants to heal itself.

As one of my mentors once told me, your body has this blueprint of perfect health and healing. It’s somewhere deep inside you in the higher self, in your soul. But it is in there. You have inside you this blueprint of perfect health and healing. If you’re spiritual, then God has that instilled in you and your body wants to come back to that. Homeostasis is the body always trying to get back to that perfect point of balance. What throws the body off balance can be stress. It can be emotional, physical, mental stress – physical stress being drugs, alcohol, the over 80,000 manmade chemicals in our air, food, water, soil. Right? There are so many factors now that are putting stressors on the body and so, with one thing at a time, with one episode at a time, with one meal at a time, with one day at a time, you can make these beautiful little changes to supporting your body’s ability to heal itself. That's what I want you to focus on. Don’t focus on what the doctor told you that you're going to be sick the rest of your life. Or you have this because your parents had it or you had this because you're old or you have this because you're a man or a woman, or whatever. Whatever excuse they said. You have this issue because… That’s their belief system. You don’t need to buy into their belief system. If you want perfect health and healing, then that's what we’re going to focus on. Because your body can heal. Just like you got a paper cut, you get a little cut, you don’t even think about it. The body just does the healing for you, right?

Now, if you have a lack of nutrients in your body, it takes longer to do wound healing. I have some clients who got their nutrition totally under control, got rid of all their nutrient deficiencies. Their body was super nutrified and then they went in for some kind of surgery and the doctors couldn’t believe how fast they healed. They were amazed. They had to take stitches out weeks before. I had a friend heal a bone faster than was expected. I’ve had clients that the incisions heal incredibly fast. I even had a friend who’s a fellow coach who was working with a client who had a stage IV bed sore and the doctors were like this person is going to die from this, there’s nothing we can do. The bed sores were all the way from the skin into the bone. We changed his diet. Diet. That’s all we could do because they were in a hospital but we changed his diet. And I said okay, here’s the foods I know that are super healing, here’s the foods that I know are super nutrifying, and here’s a list of the foods that are definitely going to hinder his wound healing. Guess what? He was able to get out of that hospital completely having healed that stage IV bed sore. 

And the doctors, within days of changing his diet, the doctors were like, “Hey, something’s working.” We’re like, yeah, we stopped feeding him the hospital food and started bringing in our own. There are foods that help the body heal. Everything you put into your body matters. Right? And that's why I love the magnesium soak because it absorbs straight into your body, bypasses the digestive system, straight into your lymph system. I love the NAD supplements. I really feel a difference when I take it. Especially the ozone therapy is amazing.

ENERGYbits is one I haven’t mentioned here but you can go to and use coupon code LTH. Like yesterday for breakfast, I just had chlorella and spirulina. ENERGYbits to me tastes delicious. Other companies’ chlorella and spirulina, I don’t like. The ENERGYbits are so clean and so pure. It’s pure amino acids. The body just immediately absorbs the nutrients and the vitamins from the ENERGYbits and I feel so good. All I did was eat 30 of these little pellets of chlorella and 30 little pellets of spirulina. That’s all I had for breakfast yesterday and I was full until about 1 PM. How cool is that? I fully nutrified my body with it. So, it’s a food. It’s little capsules you chew, not capsules, it’s like little pressed tablets that you chew. We call them green crackers in our home because our son loves them. But they're actually not a supplement; they're a crop. They're a crop the sun dehydrated and for ease of use pressed into these little things that you can chew. So, I love the ENERGYbits. Of course, you can go back. You can use the search function on my website, search ENERGYbits and find the interview, several of them with Catherine Arnston where we go through the science and the studies. It’s the most studied food in the world. There's over 100,000 studies between chlorella and spirulina. It’s the safest food in the world to eat. It’s the most studied food in the world. And it’s actually the most nutritious food in the world.

My most recent episode with Catherine Arnston, episode 487, is fantastic to listen to. She goes through, even though like I said I’ve had her on the show several times, that one is fantastic. We go through the latest science of chlorella and spirulina and how it actually acts as an antimicrobial in the body and it helps to establish a better microbiome. It is so cool, the science. If you geek out like me on the science of holistic medicine, you're going to love that episode.

So without further ado, I’ll let you get to this episode with Dr. Garcia. I know you're going to love it. I just really felt like I had to do you a service by making sure that you knew that there's all these resources. When you come to listen to this episode, I want to arm you with all these other things that you can do and now you have a bunch of things to listen to after you listen to this one. I’ve given you a list of other ones to go through. Of course, like I said, it’s in the notes of this episode. So, go through all those episodes when you’ve done this one and know that your body will heal itself. Sometimes it’s as simple as little bit of changes in lifestyle, going to bed at a different time, making sure and walking in sunlight in the morning, especially drinking enough water, drinking lemon water in the morning. These changes seem almost because they're so simple, they seem like “Oh that's too simple. My symptoms are so great. These are such small changes. How can they possibly help?” I think that some people go, “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Drink lemon water in the morning, whatever. That just doesn’t sound like it could help me.” First of all, huge benefits from hydrating the body, and then the lemon water, once it gets inside your cells, it actually acts as an antioxidant. Even though it’s acidic in your stomach, it’s actually alkaline once it’s absorbed up inside your body. So, yes, simple cheap things that you can do, like drinking a lot of lemon water in the morning, going for walks first thing in the morning, making sure you get to bed at 10:00 PM, that actually makes a huge difference. Making this shift in your diet. I have so many episodes on the wonderful healing benefits of eating organic and removing gluten grains, removing oil from your diet and increasing antioxidants with all kinds of wonderful, colorful vegetables and berries, mushrooms, onions. You can listen to my episode with Dr. Joel Fuhrman, like a nutritarian diet. Doing these changes, within 24 hours, there’s a shift in your body. Even just one meal. Eating a nutritarian meal actually is seen. You can see it in bloodwork. It begins to affect you right away. Don’t discredit diet changes, little tiny changes. Don’t discredit them. They are the key to your better health. I’m so excited for you on this healing journey because no matter where you are, if you're suffering like I did, please know that you don’t have to suffer. It is optional. And we’re going to help you to get to a point where you’re no longer suffering. I believe in your body’s ability to heal itself. 

Have yourself a fantastic rest of your day, and enjoy today’s episode. 

[00:21:06] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is episode 493.

I am so excited for today’s interview. We have an amazing guest, Dr. Oz Garcia, on the show today who specializes in helping people to heal and overcome from long-haul syndrome. We’re seeing the masses having huge issues recovering even months later after having COVID. And you’ve written an amazing book called After COVID. It’s on Amazon. Of course, the links to everything that Dr. Garcia does is going to be in the show notes of today’s podcast at

As the pandemic began in 2020, when did you start to see people suffering from long-haul syndrome? Much like mono where even a year later, people are just exhausted, mentally exhausted. They’ve got brain fog; it’s affecting people mentally and emotionally. Some people even have digestive problems months and months later. When did you start to see it as a problem?

[00:22:11] Dr. Oz Garcia: Great question, Ashley. I would say the summer of 2020 already, even though that was the beginning, in many ways of the pandemic, that March is when it really took off. But people were already being deeply affected. They have been exposed to the virus. Months later, I started to read about people that have gotten it right at the beginning and by August-September, I was reading about people that were somewhat incapacitated. In other words, they got sick. They had gone through all that was available to actually get through the illness itself yet there was the post-illness hangover, so to say, and information was already coming out at that point and I thought to myself, this is really peculiar. Kind of like what you said about mono and Epstein-Barr where you took a bad hit but it would debilitate you for indefinite periods of time and for the effects of COVID, nobody knew what this was, why were people still experiencing symptoms three months, four months, six months later. And now we know that people are experiencing it one year, two years, going into three years for some people.

[00:23:42] Ashley James: This is very scary because a lot of doctors are ignoring it. A lot of doctors don’t know what to do. They are sending people, just go to a counselor, maybe this is just a mental or emotional issue. But they don’t have this toolset and the drug companies haven’t developed a drug yet, so they're just like, “Well, just wait and be sick until we figure out a drug we can give you.” 

But really, none of those things are the answer. Is this similar to other viruses that cause a syndrome? Is this similar? Or are you seeing it that it’s even worse? Is it different?

[00:24:19] Dr. Oz Garcia: The nature of this virus is its novelty in terms of what’s happening that is completely radically different than anything that’s come before it. So, when people get exposed to it, they could get a kind of like COVID which is in something that I would say is all that good. We don’t know if you get exposed to COVID one, two, or three times with a new variant that there may not be long-term repercussions even though the hit may be initially somewhat light. Now, we know that because of the novelty of this particular virus, in fact, it mutates—in fact, it mutates so rapidly. The fact that there are many points along the protein spikes on the virus itself that can cause depending on the person, depending on their current state of health, depending on preexisting conditions, genetics, whether you're going to go down or not and whether you're going to go down really bad, and whether you're going to have a good recovery or not, and you're going to find yourself with post COVID or long-haul syndrome.

So, doctors are not all that well-equipped to actually deal with this problem because we’ve never seen it before. So, if you do go to a doctor, they’re going to look at you as they did with me when I was first diagnosed with long-haul as a mystery, what do I do about my lungs that were ravaged by COVID pneumonia. What do I do about these joint aches that were back breaking? What do I do about the severe exhaustion and apathy that had me sleeping up to 18 hours a day? What do I do about my moods? The fact that there was this no sense of happiness whatsoever, just morose, blue, anxious. And then the terrible problems with insomnia.

So, I had the full package. Everything that anybody could have had post COVID, I had. I went from weighing about 140 pounds to about 100, maybe 99, 98 pounds by the time I got home from the hospital. So, I was a walking wreckage. Like that, there are people in the millions that got this virus. It’s kind of like termites in a house. They come in, they do the damage that they do. You get the exterminator, they put the canvas over your house, they come in and they spread the house and fumigate it, kill all the termites, take the tent down, but you wouldn’t dare go into the house afterwards. God only knows what condition the floor is in, the staircase. So, kind of like that. COVID does tremendous biological infrastructural damage for many people. Certainly those that are long-haulers and symptomology that's unexpected.

So, you can’t reduce it to a pill, a solution. There are too many moving parts when you’re talking about long-haul COVID or post-COVID syndrome. Some people can’t recover their smell for a while or their taste for a while or they’ve got chronic headaches. It may be just something like that. It can be just deep disturbances with your sleep. So, you can have mild long-term symptomology which is also nerve-wracking or the full package in the way that I had it where when I was speaking to some doctors that are dear friends of mine, some of the most brilliant cardiologists, pulmonologists and so on that couldn’t come up with any way to explain what was going on and any way to explain what would be the best path out or best paths out. 

So, doctors themselves are baffled. There are doctors themselves that have wound up with long COVID, and they're suffering and they understand that this isn’t a mental problem. That there are severe problems with your body that they can’t put a finger on. There are programs at different institutions at Cornell Weill, at Mount Sinai, programs for long-haulers I think at NYU also. I find that the counsel and advice that’s being given by the faculty of doctors in these different institutions leaves a lot to be desired.

[00:29:01] Ashley James: What did you do? So you were patient zero for yourself. Or patient one. You were like ground zero. You're treating yourself first and having to figure out what is going on. Then also, you were seeing amazing experts and they were all scratching their heads too. So you had to really build your protocol from the ground up.

[00:29:20] Dr. Oz Garcia: Let’s backtrack a little bit. I’ve been in my field for about 40 years. I’ve been a long-distance runner. I’ve been a marathoner. I’ve been an ultramarathoner. And I’ve been accustomed to having great control over my body. Certainly when it came to my breathing capacity, the fact that I could in the weeks before I got COVID get up, do 150 push-ups, work out in the ways that I was accustomed to working out and generally feel really well to getting home several weeks after being hospitalized with COVID where I tried to do one push-up and fell and banged my head and just made things worse. Being accustomed to having been a runner and having full lung capacity to where now I was attached to an oxygen compressor 24 hours a day for about two months, this was mentally debilitating and when I would talk to the doctors that had treated me in the hospital, you could almost feel them shrugging their shoulders over the phone. They didn’t know what to say. Bit by bit, they disconnected from being in communication with me.

So yeah, I had to be my own patient zero, so to say. The fact that I knew so much about caring for my body in terms of nutrition, in terms of mindfulness practices, the supplements that I used, the way that I would work out, the fitness protocols, the use of contrast between extreme heat and extreme cold, whether it was sauna and cold plunges. All of these plus a multitude of other practices, protocols, and products that I never thought about, I had to think about. Now, I knew that if I wanted to get my breathing back into control, that I had to rely on myself. And what was out there that was available to actually rehabilitate lungs that have been ravaged by viral pneumonia, by COVID pneumonia, whereas the doctors couldn’t tell me what to do really. 

I kind of literally, in my bed, laid out a spreadsheet. Okay, so my mood sucked. What do I do about that? My anxiety is through the roof. I don’t have energy. I need to crawl to the bathroom. My breathing is suffering tremendously. My lungs have sustained a certain amount of damage. My appearance, at 98 pounds, I looked like I had survived coming out of Somalia. I could count the bones on my chest. My face is completely sunken in. So, what could I do to rebuild my muscle mass? What could I do to gain my weight back? So, this became an inquiry in terms of all my prior knowledge and could I bring it to bear so that I could save my life.

[00:32:28] Ashley James: How long did it take you before you started to start feeling better again?

[00:32:33] Dr. Oz Garcia: I would say it was a good 8 months. Good 8 months. So, the first several months was falling into routines that I would follow every day religiously and repeat them every single day over and over and over. Then, what I would do is add another routine. It’s kind of like becoming a juggler. You start out by juggling two balls and then at a certain point, you find that you can keep on pulling up in the air and add a third one. Then all of a sudden, I was juggling three balls. Then bit by bit, as I had my confidence increased, I could add a fourth and a fifth and so on.

So, it was a lengthy process and it’s still going on. I’m still rebuilding my body almost few years later. But I’m far and away from where I was when I couldn’t stand up hardly. Like I said, I had to crawl to just about any part of my apartment. My breathing was terribly labored. By following the counsel I’d say of thinkers that were better than I am, certainly in how to do things incrementally like James Clear, and James’ book, Atomic Habits. So by listening to Atomic Habits, again, while I was in the hospital, audiobooks, and then kind of listening to it again when I was home, I knew that I could do a little tiny bit every day. If I could do 0.25% percent better than I did the day before and keep building up so that it was a percentage increase in a week, then 0.50%, then could I do 1% better today than I did yesterday? With my breathing exercises, my ability to do some kind of strengthening exercises, crafting my eating so that it was to make me gain back muscle mass, and then by category, all the different things that I knew I needed to do, within a matter of several months, I was off the breathing device that I had at home. Then beyond that, I saw that my appearance is improving. That encouraged me tremendously.

I lost a lot of my hair as you saw before. I now have a full head of hair. But it was coming out in patches. Same thing. You all of a sudden go from thinking of yourself in a certain way in the world, you take great pride in terms of your upkeep, your appearance, and here I was I looked completely unrecognizable to myself.

There were other problems also that arise in the hospital. I developed clots in my body. Now, this is an effect of the virus itself. So there were medications that I was put on to actually break the clots up. They did save my life. Once I got out of the hospital, I found alternative protocols, alternative treatments to actually break clots up because the medications themselves that I was taking were producing terrible side effects.

So, bit by bit, I found the appropriate parallel protocol for just about everything that I was suffering from and how could I continue to expand on that. Okay, so if I use certain kinds of nutrients to improve on my sleep, then could I eliminate what they gave me in the hospital? Could I eliminate my insomnia? By category, same thing there, I worked up a complete protocol for supplementation. That is, the vitamins, the minerals, the amino acids, the essential fatty acids, the peptides, the nootropics, the herbal products. All the products that I felt besides the basics, things like vitamin D and probiotics, but much more I would say precise use of certain nutrients that could build my brain back, that could build my energy back, that could put me into very deep sleep for hours at a time, that could help me recover my energy from the damage that was done to my muscles, the mitochondria, the engines within the cells of my body. Bit by bit, I started to feel that I was going to actually get my life back. But it was bit by bit. It was a James Clear inspired process to getting my life back.

[00:37:26] Ashley James: At what point did you start to share this with patients or clients or people you’re working with? At what point did you start to then help others?

[00:37:35] Dr. Oz Garcia: I would say it took me months. Probably I got sick at the end of the January of 2021 and by October-November 2021, I was back to journaling, writing essays, posting on media, and it occurred to me that I wanted to write a book about my experience and put in that book what it was that I did to save my ass, so to say. The book itself winds up being in two parts. It’s a history of the events that many people go through when they wind up with severe COVID, my own personal experience. Then the second part, Ashley, is pretty much a workbook like these are the things that I did for sleep, these are the things that I did to improve my appetite. These are things that I did to get my muscle mass back up. These are things that I did to improve my brain, my memory (short-term and long-term). And these are things and these are the products that I used to improve my focus, my recall. These are the things that I used to get my motivation back on track.

So I had to earn it all back. I’d say a lot of it was the discipline prior to COVID. I had to draw on that and use certain thinkers that, again, I would listen to, to get the inspiration, to motivate myself when there was no motivation at all. There was nothing in my body that I would say felt like you got to get up, you got to do breathing exercises. None of that. I had to literally use my brain power to move me through just about every exercise, every practice, every protocol to get back to where I thought I should be. And that, like I said before, was incremental over a matter of many, many months. But I’d say by October-November, I was healthy enough, fit enough that I could start writing out everything about my misadventure and how to get your life back at least from my perspective from long-haul COVID. 

[00:40:04] Ashley James: I definitely want to get into things that you felt were really impactful. But I’d like to know, have you ever had chronic illness in your past or is this the first time you’ve really suffered?

[00:40:18] Dr. Oz Garcia: I’ve been fortunate in that I’ve never ever experienced anything of this magnitude at all. Nothing that I could recall. Nothing that prevented me from being able to get out of my bed. Literally, Ashley, I couldn’t lift my arms at a certain point. The fact that there was no muscle there to lift it, it should tell you something in that regard. So no, I was completely unprepared for this.

[00:40:52] Ashley James: Now you're in your 70’s and we got to see each other, I got to see you on video and you look incredibly handsome and you don’t look anywhere, I mean, if someone said you're in your 50’s, I’d be like, “Okay,” Like you are very handsome. When I say handsome, I mean very healthy. You look very healthy. So, I know that the work that you’ve done, like you said, you’ve built all these habits, all these routines to getting yourself back and you still are getting yourself back. But I just think about the amount of empathy now you have for those who are in chronically ill states and especially those who are also going through long-haul like you have so much empathy now having been incredibly healthy before, having not really ever experienced chronic illness and you were a marathon runner, your peak performance, top health, and then it was all taken away from you, just very quickly taken away from you and now you're building your body back from being emaciated. So your compassion and your drive, even though you didn’t have any because I know when you have long-haul syndrome, you don’t have motivation. There's no motivation. Like you had to really pull up some motivation that wasn’t even there from like you said mental willpower. I like that you turned back to Atomic Habits. What a great audiobook. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to that with my husband. We really got a lot out of it. I couldn’t believe when I saw an Audible that it was a 5-star and it had so many ratings. I’m like, what has 5 stars? And now, that has 5 stars. That's a great one to tell everyone to listen to.

The fact that you suffered so greatly and you have come so far and you can turn around and then help those who are also suffering. That’s why I know that your book is going to be so helpful for so many people, the book After COVID. I’m so happy that you're here today sharing so that we can help those no longer suffer.

[00:43:00] Dr. Oz Garcia: It’s true. Also, being in the hospital, being told that I may never be able to work out again, run again, may as well forget, I was literally told that many of the things that I had in my life, I think I had my iPhone me, I was just constantly doing Google searches on what was known at that time. But I came very close to dying in the hospital. As my weight kept dropping rapidly, as I would go in and out of conscience often during the day, the fact that there was no real understanding about the value of sleep, so you would be woken up several times a night. I know this is well-intended to take your blood pressure, make sure that your oxygen saturation was what it should be, draw your blood, but I went through three weeks where I essentially would sleep totally maybe 2, 3, 4 hours maximum per night. You got to know at that point, Ashley, there were no hospital rooms available. They are all taken. So we were being wielded into a converted storage room. So, no windows, temperature control didn’t exist. The rooms would either get too hot, too cold, extremely humid. And that would add to the terror that you were going through emotionally, right? Again, we’re talking about a pandemic. Nobody was prepared. Nobody understood how bad this was and how bad it was about to get still. And how to make sure that you could be as comfortable as possible. The medical system was horrifically overwhelmed. While I was in there, I would say that there was a revolution within my value system. So, all the things that I thought were meaningful before, bit by bit as I went through my recovery, started to lose meaning. How important was it to accumulate great wealth, how important was it to accumulate notoriety, being well known, how important was it to have substantial material goods, how important was it to fly off to exotic destinations and think that this was what was important in life.

So, that whole system kind of collapsed and it was, I’d say, one of the gifts out of all of this and I got to be careful because I wish I could have come to these points of view, the ones that I hold now, in terms of yes, having greater empathy, greater compassion, intense gratitude, humility, the value systems that when you stack them all together allow you to have a sense of integrity and a sense of self that wasn’t there before. And I thought that it was there before. I thought that was I pursuing authenticity and sincerity, but at the same time, you wind up in a hedonic treadmill where if you live in New York City, or any big city in America, you’re driven to achieve and achieve to the point where your value systems do get bent out of shape and corrupted. And you can’t see it when you're in it. It’s kind of like a fish in the water. You're just operating that way. What’s everybody in New York up to? Looking good, scoring big, making sure that you're recognized for being somewhat special. All the things that you can’t really say in totality add up to being a happy human being. Whatever they add up to, the whole notion of what it means to be happy wasn’t on my mind. It was kind of like okay, this is what you do and this is what your work is producing for you.

I think these days, my concern is certainly for people around me, and the kind of value system that does allow me to be a lot more forgiving for how I was and where things go wrong these days. Just forgiving overall. And we know through neuroscience that to the extent that you practice gratitude, you can get a gratitude journal, you can get a gratitude app. You can get a 5-minute journal app, download it, and do five minutes of gratitude every morning, five minutes of gratitude before you go to bed every night. And we know that after a month to three, it has a profound effect on your thinking. How it is that you view the world, how you view yourself and how you view people around you. So, all of those things took on greater meaning for me and continue to grow, expand, push out as more time has elapsed, Ashley, since I became sick and I started to look at the world this way.

[00:48:40] Ashley James: So, you're sharing with us things that you got out of it. It’s like taking a very horrible and tragic experience and you're starting to find the growth there.

[00:48:52] Dr. Oz Garcia: That's correct. But like I pointed out before, did I have to go that far down to come this far in terms of how I now live my life and the way that we’re shaping our practice, our office, and my interactions with most people. So, maybe in my case that’s what it took and thank God I survived. There were plenty of people that I knew that didn’t survive, that didn’t make it. I shared a room with one gentleman who passed away the second week that I was in the hospital and another room with another gentleman that passed away.

So, I remember, I do recall many people kind of telling me, “Well, what lessons did you learn out of this?” Frankly, I don’t think I learned anything. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy. It’s not an experience that people need to go through. Now, I think because of my character, I kind of got enough out of this experience that I knew that since I lived and I made it through, that I didn’t want to embody the values that I had before. They somehow seemed meaningless to me. Like the texture of rice paper, like looking good, does that really matter? Or does like you mentioned before, being empathetic and compassionate, does that matter? And should I put my attention there?

In totality, you find that you're accumulating greater amounts of peace of mind whereas I don’t think I had all that much before. I was just driven.

[00:50:43] Ashley James: Wow, it really did completely reset your whole life and you've built yourself back up and then you turned around and you want to help others. I love the work that you're doing because we can end the suffering of so many. There's people out there who went through what you went through. 

[00:51:05] Dr. Oz Garcia: Very true. Well, to give you a quick example, let’s talk about breathing for a minute. So, with my COVID, I had a severe pneumonia. When I was in the hospital and I was CAT scanned, they told me that I had about half of my lungs filled with, to quote the doctor, millions of micro clots. And I had one substantial clot headed for my heart. So, I couldn’t breathe. They wanted to put me on a mechanical ventilator, I refused. Statistically, many of us already know that if you go on a mechanical ventilator, your chances, at least back then, were 2 out of 10 that you’d come back. The other 8 just wouldn’t survive the experience of a mechanical ventilator. They put this tube down your throat into your lungs, you're sedated, you could be sedated for a day, a week, a month, and the mechanical ventilator breathes for you. Now, I knew based on the stats that I just told you and what I reckon, that this would be highly destructive. I took my chances. So consequentially, I was put on what’s called a high-flow cannula. That's kind of like a little breathing device that's attached to this machine that would push 65 liters of oxygen into my nose per minute at 100% oxygen. I went with that and thank God that I survived to be here and tell you the story.

Now, when I got home, I couldn’t breathe without still using auxiliary oxygen, and bit by bit, I started to investigate different devices to help me breathe better. Now, one of the things that they give you in the hospital, they gave me what’s called a spirometer and it’s kind of like a little plastic device that you blow into and then you suck the air in, you suck and you breathe in and you make a little ball go up. To the extent that you breathe better, you can make the little ball go up further and further. And I thought to myself, is this going to really save my life when I get home. You can get it on Amazon for $8. With the severe pneumonia that I had, how do I get back to breathing the way that it did before?

A dear friend of mine who’s a very well-known athlete turned me onto a particular breathing device that you get with an app and started using it. It was like sitting still in a chair using the breathing device, this actually gave me a workout. I could only start at the beginning by doing 1 minute at the beginner level which would knock me out. I’d have to go lie down in my bed. I could hardly make the needle move on the breathing device. My ability to hold oxygen, breathe out and breathe in, you got a measure of all those three metrics, was horrific. Over months doing it every day, sometimes twice a day and working it was the way that I got to breathe again in the way that I do now so that I can go walk, I can go walk for 2 to 3 hours several times a week and bit by bit will consider if I want to run. There were reasons why I’m not running yet. But I can work out the way that I worked out before and go to the gym, do my upper body workouts. And this is what’s missing in the conversation with many specialists that are trying to teach long haulers how to recover their breathing capacity. If you can’t recover your breathing capacity, fully oxygenate yourself, it’s going to be difficult to actually get many other aspects of your health post COVID working as well as you want to.

I was listening to NPR radio a few days ago. On NPR, they were interviewing a gentleman who’s had long COVID now for almost two years and he was talking about how he uses the spirometer still every day and I thought to myself, “oh my God.” Two years later into his suffering still having great difficulty getting up, can only work a couple of hours per week, and doesn’t know that there may be other ways of strengthening his lung capacity, expanding his lungs, getting more oxygen throughout his body and to his brain. So there isn’t a single morning that I don’t do about 40 minutes worth of breathing exercises. That's part of the morning routine. And I can run up the four flights of stairs in my building. Whereas when I first got home, it could take me about half an hour to get up the first 2 flights. 

[00:56:33] Ashley James: Oh my gosh. Do you not have an elevator?

[00:56:35] Dr. Oz Garcia: Well, I live in a beautiful townhouse. That was very difficult. 

[00:56:40] Ashley James: Got it. So half an hour to crawl up two flights of stairs in your townhome whereas now you can run up and down the stairs. 

[00:56:48] Dr. Oz Garcia: That's correct.

[00:56:49] Ashley James: Nice. 

[00:56:51] Dr. Oz Garcia: Also too, as I rehabilitated my breathing, so did my energy start to come back. Instead of having to be in bed at 3:00, I could enjoy normal life. 6:00, 8:00. I remember the first time that I made it till 9:00 PM and I was in sheer ecstasy. It was like yes, you know, everything that you’ve done, you didn’t need to get in bed and crawl and do a 2 to 3-hour nap. You're getting better.

[00:57:18] Ashley James: I love it. I want those who are suffering to see the light at the end of the tunnel and I think your story is sharing that and showing that there’s definitely light at the end of the tunnel for them.

[00:57:32] Dr. Oz Garcia: That's correct.

[00:57:32] Ashley James: So, breathing exercise is important. Of course, you outlined this in greater detail in your book. Are there supplements or like IV protocols or like ozone IV? What else is there that helped you with your lungs beyond daily breathing exercises?

[00:57:48] Dr. Oz Garcia: We have a clinic and we do have an IV clinic. So, there were two bags of IVs that I would do per week. At the beginning of the week, I would have my clinician come over and I would do a bag with a multitude of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, amino acids. These would have a tremendous impact on how I felt. The second IV was using a very unique and novel form of vitamin B3 called NAD+. NAD is a nutrient that has a massive impact on life extension. So, it will do a great deal of repair within our own DNA sequences so that you produce less mutations as you get older. Now, NAD, we know gets depleted as a consequence of COVID. Certainly, severe COVID. Those particular IVs with extremely high amounts of vitamin C, glutathione, N-acetylcysteine, acetylcarnitine, licorice, all of these were compounded for me, B complex, minerals, amino acids. That was critical to getting me back to normal. Then the second IV which was the NAD one.

So, those are still very important. I do maybe twice a month now instead of twice a week. They’re not something that most people can find unless they go out and search for a good functional MD so that they have access to the intravenous treatment protocols that I believe had a measurable impact to my recovery. Now, separate from that, there were all the supplements that I would use. There were supplements that helped you sleep better. Gaba, magnesium threonate, L-Serine. There’s a plant called Zembrin which is now part of a product that you can get that actually calms your mind and you sleep better. The different forms of plants that I like, herbal products, holy basil. That has a remarkable effect too. So, I would stack these – Ashwaganda, gaba, vitamin B6, 5HTP. Kind of like a little hand grenade in my hand of all these nutrients that would allow me to go into a really good deep sleep. These are laid out in the workbook part of After COVID. They work very well for me and I continue to use them and I sleep a good 8 to 9 hours most days, I make a point of that.

Sleep winds up being a superpower for recovery. If you're not sleeping well and you're trying to get better, just about everything else is going to kind of break down. Your diet, your exercise, getting out and getting sun every day, trying to meditate. Your anxiety won’t alleviate unless you're getting adequate sleep on a regular basis.

I use a tool called an Oura Ring. Now the Oura Ring just like certain kinds of Fitbits, but I would say with much better accuracy, measures a great deal of your activity during the daytime if you want to, certainly when you go to sleep at night. So, by using the Oura Ring and looking at my app in the morning, I could tell how much sleep I got, my body temperature during the night, how many times I woke up, how long was I in deep sleep which allows your immune system to recover, your brain to detox, how long was in REM sleep (that’s where you're doing a lot of dreaming and a lot of memory consolidation is occurring), how much light sleep. And so, I could see my improvement over many months and now, I get almost a perfect score every night.

There's also a measure called heart rate variability (HRV) which you want to make sure is in the high levels. Your HRV can be measured while you're sleeping. HRV levels tend to drop when you're really ill, when you're stressed out. I would say a good HRV is about 40+. My HRV when I got out of the hospital was about 8, 9, 10. I knew that I was in jeopardy at that time.

[01:02:46] Ashley James: Wow. I love the idea of doing the tracking with, like you said, the Fitbit or Apple Watch or Oura Ring and being able to attract heart rate variability is so key. I’ve actually had a few episodes where clinicians have shared about it. We’ve had naturopaths share about it and nutritionists share about it, that they see it’s how we can measure the body’s base stress levels or like you can measure base metabolic rate. You can measure what your body is doing, just the burning calories, and we can understand the metabolism. But now we can look at it and see like how many RPMs are we revving. Are we like always revving at 1200 RPMs or are we revving at 9000 RPMs, is our body revving at high stress. Because I once had a client, she’d do all of my homework except she wouldn’t do any of the homework I gave her to lower stress or to manage stress. I brought it up after a few weeks of noticing. She’d do everything else. She would eat healthy, she’d track what she ate, but she refused to do any of the things that brought more happiness and less stress into her life.

So I approached it with her and she goes, “Well, I don’t feel stress. I don’t need to do this because I don’t feel stress.” I’m like, “Oh, stress isn’t an emotion.” But especially, coming from the perspective of a woman, I just see a lot of moms do this where they ignore stress levels because it’s not an emotion, so it’s not right in our forefront. But we’ll push ourselves and push ourselves. I even had a nutritionist on the show who she pushed herself to the point where she fainted. Her body was so stressed out physically and emotionally that her body said “I’m done.” The circuit breaker blew and she just fainted. That's when she had to go “Okay,” and doctors were like “Yeah, your blood pressure is through the roof, your heart rate is through the roof like everything is through the roof.” She had to dial it back. She ended up quitting her career and going and starting a whole new career and because she had to, like you did, reevaluate her values and realize that she was digging herself an early grave with her stress. Stress is not an emotion. We cannot feel when we’re not stressed. If you actually feel yourself stressed out, you are revving at the top. You’re at like 12,000 RPMs revving at the top. Maybe your heart is beating out of your chest.

But that’s why it’s sort of like they say blood pressure is the silent killer. Having high blood pressure, you don’t feel it. And if you feel it, you're really in danger. 

[01:05:06] Dr. Oz Garcia: That's correct.

[01:05:07] Ashley James: Heart rate variability allows us to see where is our baseline stress level because if we can lower it, if we can do things like get to bed on time, not eat sugar, and alcohol increases the stress levels in the body, and you can track it. You can track your heart rate variability. 

[01:05:22] Dr. Oz Garcia: Oh yeah, you’ll see on the occasions where I’ve had even a couple of glasses of wine, after having a good run for several weeks with elevated HRV, I can see my HRV plummet just from a few glasses of wine at nighttime and waking up and going, “Damn it.” You kick yourself and you realize that yes, in terms of long-haul COVID, it may not be so smart. But even if you don’t have it, overall, it does seem to affect how long you may live, chips away at your DNA’s desire to stick around longer.

[01:06:02] Ashley James: And that's so important. Everything we’re doing now will affect us in our later years. I’ve watched several family members who didn’t take care of themselves really suffer in the last 10 year of their life. I really don’t want to spend the last 10 years of my life suffering and being a burden on my family. It’s just not fun for anyone. We’re dragging everyone down. First of all, a lot of people are ignorant. I should say they're naïve. Where people are naïve, they’re buying into the marketing, the food marketing. They go through the drive-thru’s and they don’t take care of themselves. They don’t take care of themselves emotionally, they don’t take care of themselves physically and they're just going with the flow. And they’ll end up like a statistic. Like the heart disease and cancer, the leading causes of death. It’s so unfortunate that the people die much younger in America than they do in other countries.

If you want to be a statistic, first of all, go Google the statistics, go look at them and then keep doing what everyone else is doing. But my listeners don’t do that. My listeners are here learning from you because they want to be 90 years old, hiking at 90, and they don’t want to be a burden on their loved ones. And they want to enjoy the last few decades of their life want to be filled with joy.

[01:07:14] Dr. Oz Garcia: That's correct.

[01:07:15] Ashley James: The choices we make now, like you said, drinking alcohol, let’s say, and not getting to sleep on time every night, staying up late every night, that eats away at our DNA. The eats away at our body. 

Dr. Alan Christianson was on the show a few months ago and he quoted this massive study where they found the single most important factor in all-cause mortality was stress levels. Smoking was the second. So, it’s like quitting smoking is less important than making sure you go to sleep on time and manage your stress. So, the idea of getting serious and, you know what, I’ll make sure my husband doesn’t hear this because I’ll tell you what I got him. I got him a Fitbit for Christmas. We were looking at the Apple Watch and all that stuff. But there was all these fees attached to it. So, I got him the best Fitbit and I’m so excited for him to start tracking because now, he’s becoming more aware and he wants to take even better care of himself. We talked about how you can track sleep and stuff like that. So, I’m getting him a Fitbit and he notices how great he feels when he starts doing all the things I tell him to do.  

[01:08:26] Dr. Oz Garcia: Wonderful. It turns out to be a game. I mean, you start playing a game with yourself where the feedback itself, the numbers that you get kind of entice you to want to get a better score the next day. Like, how do I get my 90 again? How do I get my HRV over 45? So, it’s almost a game that I play with myself. It’s the first thing that I do in the morning. Open up my Oura app and look at my scores, and it’s like “Yes!” There's the Garmin, there’s Whoop, there’s Fitbit, there's Oura. So anything that turns you on that will allow you to measure what’s going on with your body and most importantly with your sleep, that becomes a critical aspect certainly for most people. Long-haulers I think need that kind of information so that they can autocorrect. But just about anybody that wants to get better control of their bodies, they need to quantify certain kinds of data. I would say central to all the spokes, is your sleep. Many times, when I’ve got clients that come in and they want to know, “Well, how am I going to eat? When are you going to put me on an eating program?” it’s like, well, how’s your sleep? Horrible. Really. Okay, so I’ll start by cleaning up their sleeping practices and then, we’re going to talk about something else. How’s your level of fitness? Do you meditate? Are you a mindful human being? Let’s get all the basics in order then let’s talk about food so that you get maximum value out of what you eat and it’s not such a struggle. It’s just not a struggle.

What you're finding is, it’s all something to contemplate over because you're well-rested, you’re in better moods. You can think about what’s going to empower you and give you energy at the beginning of the day. Should I have a smoothie? What kind of smoothie? Do I put fruits in it or not? Should I throw in some MCT oil, half an avocado? Okay, do I have lunch? Do I skip lunch? Do I have a high-protein lunch? Or is today vegetarian day? Should I skip dinner? Should I do intermittent fasting? What’s the latest that I should eat? 

So, it isn’t about being an overthinker; it’s about being a mindful, thoughtful individual about what you're doing with your body. What you’re putting in it, what you're doing to it, how you're resting it, what information you're exposing it to. It used to be that I would get up and years ago, first thing I’d do, I’d get out of bed and put on Morning Joe in the background. I can’t believe that that would be how I would start my morning. I would be stretching, do an exercise. And the TV would be on in the background listening to politics. I’d prepare my tea and just as unaware of how this was warping my thinking. And now, when I get up, I don’t even have a TV set anymore. I had two TV sets in my old apartment. Since COVID, I just don’t watch TV. If I want to watch a movie, I’ve got my iPad and I’ll go on to that, if I want to watch a documentary. 

So, it’s a very different experience to not have a TV set on. And I’ll put on Alexa and ask it to play some great jazz in the morning. So I’m good to bed and enter my morning with music. Which is one of the more remarkable ways for any of us to enter our mornings. Not blasting a TV set or listening to news first thing out of bed and wondering why the rest of your day, you’re on edge.

[01:12:33] Ashley James: I love that. Setting up an atmosphere. I heard there’s a whole thing around sleep hygiene like creating an environment to go to sleep to but I never thought of creating a hygiene of an environment to wake up to, to set the tone of the day to, to help the body and the stress hormones to ease into the day in a more motivated way than have my feet hit the floor and it’s like go, go, go, race, race, race and all the stimulation. You're rising, you’ve created an environment for healing going to bed at night but also waking up in the morning and considering that your mental and emotional state affect your physical stress levels, it’s important to nurture ourselves mentally and emotionally because that takes care of our body as well. 

[01:13:25] Dr. Oz Garcia: Very much. Morning rituals I think are critical for everyone. For me, to know that I had a routine that I could follow at my worst that I had no idea that anything I was doing was going to work. So whether it was through my breathing, having my weird concoctions in the morning, making sure that I got body work 3-4 times a week, I had no idea of this was going to give me my life back. Because I was reading the news just like everybody else. This is what happens with long-haul COVID. My blood tests indicated that there were blowouts within my immune system that if I was to believe what I read on Google didn’t bode well for me. 

So, I kind of stopped even doing that. I just started to do everything that I believed would get me back and that also started to nurture my mindset. So, it became a very flexible mindset and allowed me to look at things that were way out of what people would consider healing practices or could possibly have an effect on long-haul COVID. Then, reel it all the way back in and go, okay, so these are the protocols that I find make a difference for me. This is what got my fill-in-the-blank back to acceptable levels. And a lot of that occurred within the first 3-4 hours of waking up. So, I get up relatively early and I like to go to bed early, read before I go to bed for a while, maybe watch a little bit of a movie or documentary and then, all lights out by between 9 and 10 PM. 

Then, it’s up early between 5 and 6 AM. I’ve got plenty of time before work to do my morning routines, my morning rituals, and that includes doing meditative practices. I may do 10 minutes of meditation, 20 minutes. And I love to use the Sam Harris app which is called Waking Up. That's a world of information. Different teachers that are presenting multiple portholes into how to meditate, different kinds of meditative practices. There's a lot of theory that you can listen to. Recently, I listened to an interview with Laurie Santos who is a professor at psychology at Yale. Now, her course is called Well-being and Happiness. It’s the number one attended course in Yale. One in 4 studies in Yale attend it. So, I listened to the interview on Sam Harris and I thought this is unlike I’ve ever heard before on the subject matter of happiness. Went on to Coursera, signed up for a course and completed it and have a very different understanding of what it is that produces happiness. Like I thought I knew what it was before. But there are nuances, there are subtleties. That, by the way, I would say, Ashley, added much to my evolving perspective, what I knew wasn’t producing happiness. All right, so what does produce it? And this is like kind of the other side of it. So, these are the things that you should be looking at that will produce happiness. This is what happiness may or may not be. You may have had preconceptions about the subject matter, we’re going to kind of blow them up here. So, I’ve incorporated much of that simply because I’m listening to a meditation app every morning for 10 minutes. 

[01:17:16] Ashley James: And that definitely reflects your value shift. Our values, it’s our unconscious motivators. A lot of people don’t know. Like we know what a value means and we don’t understand how it affects our behavior. So at an unconscious level, it dictates our behavior. If you want to know what you value, so I have a master practitioner and trainer of neurolinguistic programming and there's a very simple thing you can do. Get a pad of paper and a pen and either you can do it yourself or you can ask someone else to do it. Sometimes it’s nicer if someone else is writing down what you say because you can just kind of go unconscious and say whatever. And you pick something. For example, my career. So you write down “my career”, these are the values that you're going to list about your career and you say what’s important to me about. But for this podcast, let’s say health. My body’s health. So what’s important to you about health? And you can even do what’s important to me about my life. Right? Then you just start writing down. So you say, what’s important to me about my health? That I have energy, I feel great in the morning, that I feel strong, that I’m able to run up a flight of stairs. You do sometimes say things in the negative that I’m not tired, that I’m not winded. So whatever you say, write it down. It doesn’t matter whether you say it in the positive or negative, you write it down. Then, you get about between 5 and 8 things out, and your mind goes blank. That’s the unconscious mind bringing it to the conscious, so you wait 15 seconds, 30 seconds, ask yourself again, what’s important to me about my health? Then new stuff will come to mind. You do this, you kind of rinse and repeat 3 or 4 times, you get a list. You can get a list of up to 40 things. It doesn’t have to be that long, you can just do 20 things. Then, you look at the list and then you number them. What is the most important thing about my life or my health? What’s the most important thing? Then you go down the list and you number them, and then you look at, oh very interesting, it will give you insight what is an away from, so what is a negative, like I don’t want to feel fat or I don’t want to look too skinny. When you say “I don’t” and it’s away from and you say a negative, you really want to highlight that or put like a little red line or under it, and then everything that’s stated in the positive, that's good. 

The values that have a negative associated to it have a negative belief system. That actually will drag us down and it will negatively impact our behaviors and our behaviors are what get our results in life, right? If your behavior is sitting on the couch and doing nothing, that’s getting your result. Doing nothing is a behavior also. Choosing not to do anything is a behavior. When people are negatively motivated, they’re the ones who join the gym in January but don’t go by February. Right? They’re the ones who you’ll get short-term gains but then you’ll give up. You want to examine and look at how many negative belief systems you carry that are attached to your negative values. This is a great self-exploration or you can find an NLP practitioner to work with to kind of go through and explore this, but even just like writing down and looking at your values and listing your values and looking at your values and going, this is all the results I get, all my behavior both conscious and unconscious in my life, the things I’m doing right now and the results I’m getting right now, this is what is motivating me to do or not do those things. Then looking at what is actually important. Because if you're not pursuing the things that are important to you, you might have a negative belief system holding you back.

Someone might be listening to you going, “Oh, but I couldn’t afford to do IV. I’m not even going to try. I’m not even going to start. I don’t have money so I can’t do it.” They cut themselves off from any further action because there's a negative belief around money or around time. What you're saying is you don’t need to be a millionaire with free time to get your health back. These are the things you did and even someone who like is on a pension or on disability, there are so many things they can do. There are so many free apps they can do. Maybe they can find a used on eBay, find an old used Oura ring or something. There's ways. But if you believe you can’t, you will stop seeing possibilities. 

[01:21:44] Dr. Oz Garcia: No question about it. 

[01:21:45] Ashley James: I want people who are suffering to see like if they have the brain fog and they're like “I don’t know if I can even do this,” but you could do breathing for one minute, you could start for one minute a day, or you could start to write down one thing you're grateful for and then the next day write two things you're grateful for. Like gratitude journaling, even if it’s just three things a morning, writing three things down, start somewhere because doing something is going in the right direction. As opposed to saying “Well, I can’t because I don’t have the time or I don’t have money.” Then boom, they’ve just cut themselves off from this world of possibilities whereas you built your health up so much so you went from crawling up to two flights of stairs in half an hour to being able to run up and down flights of stairs. And that's what I want for everyone who’s suffering. It does take that mindset.

[01:22:36] Dr. Oz Garcia: It does. 

[01:22:40] Ashley James: So knowing what motivates you and shifting your values but also understanding that you might have a belief system that is preventing you from even taking action and saying you know what, I’m not going to let this old negative belief that I created dictate my life anymore because what I want now is to be like Dr. Oz Garcia. I want to be healthy, I want to be building my body again, I want to overcome. And so it does take that. I too lang had long-haul COVID but my experience was really unique in that April of 2021, I was giving birth and my daughter died right at the end of labor. Her head was halfway out and she passed away and we don’t know why. We have no idea why. Of course, with the grief, my blood pressure was through the roof, paramedics were there for an hour and everything. It was incredibly traumatic losing her and right after that. I think I had a visitor, one of my friends came to visit within a few days and she didn’t know him and his son had COVID. You don’t know. Who knows? I just had that feeling like I couldn’t breathe almost like an asthma attack. Couldn’t breathe. My oxygen was low, I felt like I was passing out. I couldn’t stand, I couldn’t walk. At this time during COVID, I didn’t know how much of this is my tremendous amount of grief that I’m going through, how much of it is recovering from birth because my body is still recovering from birth and then how much of it is grief, how much of it was birth, how much is COVID, and then afterwards, again, I didn’t notice how much of my recovery because at that time also we found that we had to move. So, we’re packing. So now, I’m recovering from pregnancy, like having grief and trauma and now, post COVID, and not really knowing which is which. It’s all just a package of weirdness. And what a stress. What a stress from not knowing where we’re going to live.

One of my really close family members went into hospice care and we’re taking care of them. So it was just one thing after another. But what I realized is my brain was Swiss cheese. Doing interviews was really difficult. I was still very dedicated to the podcast but I went from… at the start of the podcast, I could do three episodes a week, three interviews a week and I could barely do one a month at the time. I just felt like my brain was Swiss cheese. I would be reaching for nouns or reaching for names and I couldn’t access it. I always thought maybe this is the trauma brain but this could be COVID brain. I also had a huge amount of muscle weakness. I could barely walk up the stairs. It wasn’t really winded like my lungs. I just could barely carry anything, could barely lift my arms. My legs were incredibly weak. I had to hold on to railings and go one step at a time, one leg at a time going up each stair. That was in April.

Then in December of last year, I decided to go for IV ozone, doing an ozone 10-pass.

[01:25:55] Dr. Oz Garcia: Remarkable, 10-pass is terrific. I did many of them as part of my recovery. It’s good for you.

[01:26:02] Ashley James: It was like night and day and I sat there with this wonderful naturopath and she did the 10-pass with me. It took about three hours. We talked the whole time, it was great. Then, so I pick up orders from Azure Standard. It’s like buying in bulk and I had these 25-pound bags of lentils and brown rice and whatever that I had bought. Her clinic is also a pick-up location for Azure. My order had arrived and I’m like, okay, just give me a sec. And I ran down, there's this long cement staircase all the way down to my car, and I ran down it and I opened up the trunk of the car and got it ready, and then I ran back up taking like not doing one step at a time, like jumping up each step, grabbed two bags, so carrying 50 pounds now, ran back down the stairs and I had maybe 4 or 5 bags. Normally, my husband would be the one carrying the bags. I was crying by the end of it, like tears of joy. I’m like, my muscle weakness was gone. I was like, this ozone 10-pass is amazing and so I thought, man, I didn’t realize that my muscle weakness was from the damages of mitochondrial damage from long-haul.

[01:27:21] Dr. Oz Garcia: Tremendous. Long-haul does create mitochondrial damage. Mitochondria, for those that don’t know, are the engines within all our cells. Each cell that we have, each neuron that we have has hundreds, if not thousands, of these little engines and their job is primarily to produce energy by burning off sugar, fat, and protein to the extent that that may be a fuel like ketones, for instance. So, when you get COVID and any number of other illnesses for some people, I would say Lyme disease, chronic Lyme’s, I would say long-haul in many ways is very similar to having chronic Lyme. The ability of your mitochondria to perform is corrupted. They don’t burn off fuel like they're supposed to. They're not burning fat like they're supposed to. They're not burning sugar like they're supposed to. Energy is not being produced adequately. So, there is severe fatigue. For some people, it’s similar to having fibromyalgia. Just this exhaustion where you can’t lift your shoulders, your back, your legs hurt. And you were extremely fortunate. I’d say that some people have genetic capacity kind of like what you’re describing to rise above the damage that you sustain, the damage that you're living through and recover. I would say you’re describing the capacity to be antifragile. Which is very different than what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Who knows if that’s true or not? But certainly, as you go through very demanding events and you look back and you reflect on how you made it through, it does point towards your ability to, well, be anti-fragile. You just don’t come apart that easily. And that’s what I’m hearing through everything that you're telling me. 

Certainly, having that you know you’re anti-fragile in retrospect. You did it, you did this that all this went wrong and this particular event and the pregnancy and on top of it, COVID. Who knows what else? And when you look back, yes, there's trauma that builds up and sometimes you can even overcome that. It doesn’t leave you in a chronic state of PTSD where you’re incapacitated. You can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. You’re just like, “life’s too hard.” There are plenty of people with events in the way that they occurred to you that they just kind of toss in the towel. There's no further capacity, there's no resilience left. It’s kind of like, that's it.

[01:30:33] Ashley James: In your discoveries, have you uncovered what helps people who are sort of in that level of despair to be able to rise above and start to feel like there's hope?

[01:30:46] Dr. Oz Garcia: This all goes the way almost to the beginning of our conversation, Ashley. Doing one little thing every day instead of filling up a whole list of to-do’s, this is everything I need to accomplish today, and doing that day in and day out and day in and day out and finding that you hardly make a dent. But if you can pick maybe 1 or 2 things when you’re in the pits of despair and whatever it may be so that you're moving towards pulling yourself out of this tailspin where you're not clear about why did I get hurt in this manner, why am I suffering so much, whatever—whatever you're asking why over, that you can project that and go, “this is what I can do today, I think I can do this.” As time goes by, you can reflect on the totality of many of the things that you live through, accomplish, and just like you, you're well aware that “oh, I can actually get motivated, I can actually get things done.”

[01:32:02] Ashley James: Beyond doing like ozone IV which is amazing, what other things have you found help people to heal their mitochondria from long-haul?

[01:32:14] Dr. Oz Garcia: I meditate a lot. Not only do I do Sam Harris’ Waking Up but I also use a device called Muse. There’s one called Muse S. It looks like a headband. It’s a neurofeedback device in many ways besides being a meditative device. But it trains you to quiet the voice in your head. It trains it be calmer. I’m on my third Muse device now in I don’t know how many years, and that I like because it helps you work through much of what’s destabilizing you. By doing 10 minutes of that or an hour of that, I don’t know, 3-4 times a week works really well. 

I use a device called Plato and it’s a biohacking/neurohacking device that you place on your device, it has certain electrodes on it. Actually, you can set it on your app to calm you down, help you sleep better, increase focus, prepare for a workout, run better and so on. It does it by, I want to be careful, stimulating parts of your brain but optimizing how certain parts of your brain work in the areas of your concern. So like that, I’ve got, I don’t know, two dozen different devices that I work through during a day or a week or a month, each one designed to actually improve different areas of my health and well-being. 

I’ve got the NormaTec compression boots. Now, for many people that have suffered from severe blood pressure problems, heart problems, POTS as a result of long-hauling, the problems that they suffer with blood pressure shooting up and shooting down, you can stabilize by using the NormaTec compression boots. Not only that, but you can do a 10-minute session with NormaTec, I don’t know, 3-4 days a week. I keep it right next to my chair in my office and I’ll be talking to you and I can have them on. And it improves circulation both in and out of your heart. Tremendous improvement in circulation. 

We now know for instance that even doing hot baths on a regular basis 3-4 times a week improves circulation tremendously to the extent that you can do it 4-5 times a week, it reduces your risk of a heart attack by 28 to 38 percent, if I’m not mistaken. It’s almost a 30 to 40 percent win by just soaking in a hot bath. I add Epsom salts and stand there for 5-10 minutes then get out. Relax, breathe a little bit. And you wake up feeling better the next day but you also did something really good for your body.

So, in totality, there are tools, like I said, practices, the extreme hot bath, saunas which we know for many people, infrared saunas, 15 minutes or regular stone sauna. A cool sauna. You don’t have to go in at 180 to 200 degrees. But you can go in for 150 degrees and go in for 15 minutes and build up your time over the course of many weeks and months. But saunas seem to have a profound effect also on life extension, mood, anxiety, depression, heart health. So, there are what are called heat stress proteins that are activated in your favor whenever you expose yourself to extreme heat. The same thing could be said for extreme cold. When you do an ice bath, when you do a session of cryotherapy, that that stimulates, again, activates cold stress proteins and it stresses your body just enough, what’s called hormesis, the kind of stress that actually repairs your body. If you're dealing with a lot of stress in your life, you want to look at every instrument that I’m talking about in terms of what can you do—what can you do Monday, what can you do Tuesday, what can you do Wednesday, what can you do Thursday. And in totality, when you look back over a month, you realize that you’ve done so many good things for yourself that are contributing to the stability of your body.

You had mentioned earlier living longer and living longer better. What I would say about living longer better is you want to live better with a minimum amount of infirmities. You dodge a heart attack, heart disease, adult-onset diabetes, dementia, hopefully crippling diseases of the joints or arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and so on. And really, because of all the things that we’re talking about, many of the things that I appropriated from life extension I use to actually heal me from long-haul COVID. And like you did when you did the 10-pass, these are things that will reduce your risk of dying young from the wrong things.

So I think infirmity control is critical in terms of all that you and I are talking about. Is what I am eating today going to reduce my risk of infirmities down the road? Is the fact that I only did 10 minutes of exercise today going to reduce my risk of having infirmities down the road? The answer is yes. Yes. And so on and so forth. Is the fact that I’m being very cautious with eating processed foods something that will reduce my risk of gaining too much weight, being obese and building up plaque in my heart? And on and on and on.

Curiosity is a very powerful practice and tool for people that don’t have motivation. If you're not motivated, then can you rely on your curiosity? And if not, you just kind of fade away. You miss out on this gift which is existence. The brief time that we have here, can you make it worth it?

[01:38:47] Ashley James: I love that you pointed that out because if you don’t have motivation because long-haul does suck the motivation out of you, but having innate curiosity and that's I guess probably why I’m good at podcasting. I’m so dang curious, I spent many years suffering. In my 20’s I suffered hugely from chronic illness and I overcame them. Even though MDs told me I never could. I was told by an endocrinologist after a battery of tests I’d never conceive. And we have a beautiful son that's 7 ½ and he’s largely the motivation on those days when I was so sick. Taking care of him, homeschooling him, like I have an amazing husband. If I can’t live for myself, I’m living for my loved ones. I also know because I’ve been through so much, I know that life does get better. I suffered great depression after my mom died when I was 22 years old and I remember the first time I laughed after three months or the first time I smiled after three months. First three months, no smile, no laugh. I remember the first smile. I remember the first laugh. And I remember the first feeling like the doom was fading. So, I know that there is that light at the end of the tunnel and it is so brilliant and amazing and life can be so rewarding. It might take months or years after trauma. It is worth it. Those that love you just cherish you so much and want you to not only not suffer; they want you to thrive and they want you to be around and stick around. 

So, if you don’t have motivation because you’re exhausted, having curiosity and I’m sure those who are listening do because they're listening, to having that curiosity, holding on to it and going let’s go down this rabbit holes and let me just choose 1, 2, 3 things a day that I can do that I could just start to do something towards that goal of just feeling better. Dodging infirmities is a great way to put it. But also, the same activities that dodge infirmities way down the road are things that are going to make you start feeling good today. They’re not separate. It's not like you’ll feel bad today but you’ll be better tomorrow. It’s like going for a walk in the sunlight, that's good for later on. That's good for now too. Same with eating your broccoli, it’s good for now, it’s good for later too. You're treating yourself. You're treating yourself to things that are going to build you up in the short-term but also sustain you in the long-term. So, I love that you pointed that out.

[01:41:18] Dr. Oz Garcia: So long as you're ambulatory, you're six feet above ground and you can just keep moving, you can certainly make things happen. You got to be careful with the way that our thinking is set up. There’s so much work being done now on the conversations what we have with ourselves. The voice in our head and how it all thwarts our ability to carry through and what we know is in our best interest. It’s referred to as the neuro default network. It’s a very lazy kind of mechanism that’s built off different parts of the brain that all together produce the illusion that there's a self inside our heads. The real me is this little me inside my head talking. It just talks innately, incessantly, involuntarily, wakes up and it’s got a million things to say about everything. Most of it is just dead wrong. When you can see that for what it is, that's a long process of mindfulness and meditation so that you can see thoughts kind of just passing your mind like clouds and you act on what you said before, on your list, the list of your goals. “Okay, so I’m going to act on this one thing today” rather than listening to what I had to say to myself because it’s just not all that original. I think that that was critical for me in getting better.

So, as I started to find my strength back, I knew that much of what I was saying to myself in my head, you're never going to get better, this is going to be a struggle, look at how many people have died afterwards or remain cripple. I just kind of disregarded that stream of thought and would go do what I had to do. Don’t get out of bed this morning, stay in bed. Then, get up, go get my breathing device, make my tea, sit there, look at something that I wanted to read and spend an hour or two outside of my bed. Okay, good. Am I going to get a massage today? You don’t want any company, you don’t want people to come over and go. That means that you need to call the person to come over and get body work — going against much of what we often say to ourselves which produces nothing but apathy. 

[01:44:03] Ashley James: Thank you so much for all the amazing things you shared today. I could just talk to you for hours and hours. I love that you’ve brought up the sauna because that's actually another. I have a Sunlighten sauna. I’m actually right beside it. 

[01:44:16] Dr. Oz Garcia: Wonderful!

[01:44:17] Ashley James: I’m knocking on it. it’s in our office. People think they don’t have enough room for a sauna. But it’s the size of a closet but it’s square.

[01:44:28] Dr. Oz Garcia: You can stick it in a closet. 

[01:44:30] Ashley James: Yeah, you could. It’s right beside me. This is our Sunlighten and it’s in our office. We just turned one of the bedrooms into an office. We live in a 1200-square foot townhome and we gave our son the master because that way, he has enough room for his homeschooling stuff and all his play stuff. Then, we took a small bedroom for the office. I converted half the office into a studio with all the sound equipment. I got this sauna here. Oh my gosh, I love the Sunlighten. What I do is I soak in transdermal magnesium using the and they give us a coupon code for listeners, coupon code LTH, and I get a big bowl of water and soak in it in the sauna. I just make sure not to spill it. Oh, I feel so good, I feel so, so good afterwards and it’s not too hot. 

[01:45:26] Dr. Oz Garcia: It’s cool, yeah. It’s a cool sauna. 

[01:45:28] Ashley James: It’s a cool sauna. But I’m sweating and my core temperature is raised so that heat shock proteins work in my favor, I feel so good and my husband does it also and our son, he asks for it. He loves it. He jumps in and of course, we don’t give him a full session, we give him a smaller kid version. But he’ll sit in there and he’ll get a little sweat up. And then, we always run into the shower and got to encourage my family to end with cold, get the blood pumping further. Because that also, it gets the feel-good chemicals going. If you're depressed and you wake up in the morning and you're depressed, after you’ve done gratitude, write down three things you're grateful for. But try getting in a hot shower. Even if you can’t stand, I got a seat to sit in the shower because when I was sick, I want to use hydrotherapy. So you can get a medical seat, you can sit in the shower, sure, if you don’t have a bathtub. But sit in the shower or stand and do nice and hot, and then do 90 seconds to 2 minutes of as cool or as cold as you can stand, have it be on the back of your neck and do some nice deep breathing because your body is going to force yourself to start breathing deep and you try to just get it as cold as possible, but start cool and then turn it down, and that gets some amazing endorphins going. 

[01:46:55] Dr. Oz Garcia: Terrific. It does. 

[01:46:57] Ashley James: Yeah. So you can use hydrotherapy in your home. There are so many things you can do for free. Like you said, sweating in a hot, hot bath and then you could take for hot, hot baths, some people get headaches. But if you take a towel and you get like cold water on it. You can wrap it around your neck and that helps to prevent the headaches, so you can get a really, really hot bath and then can get a cold wet cloth around your neck which all the blood going to your brain is cooler there. 

[01:47:24] Dr. Oz Garcia: Terrific. 

[01:47:26] Ashley James: I love the Sunlighten sauna and they actually give a great discount to my listeners as well because when I interviewed the founder Connie Zack, after trying to find the best sauna that I felt was like the most nontoxic and low EMF and all that. But it’s been monumental for me for recovering from heavy metal issues and detox issues. So, that's been really helpful. But yeah, my recovery has been great using that as well. So, I love that you brough that up. There's all these devices. I love the biohacking you do. How can listeners keep learning from you? What’s the best way? Now, of course, you have a website and that is easy to remember because it’s your name and of course, all the links are going to be in the show notes of today’s podcast at Where should people go to learn from you? Is there social media or a YouTube or a podcast? Where should we learn?

[01:48:27] Dr. Oz Garcia: Absolutely. Well, of course, the website and we’re constantly putting up blogs and information. I would say our fan page on Facebook which is Oz Garcia, and we’re constantly posting articles that I think are relevant in just about every area of health that needs to be addressed. If you want to live a long life, if you're into the subject matter that you and I are recovering besides long-hauling, what can you do so that you reduce your risk of infirmities as get older. So, we cover everything from diet to fitness to different ways of eating to the aspects of neuroscience that fascinate me, and the tools that I use.

On Instagram, it’s Oz Wellness. There, I tend to address much more my philosophical bent, my thinking in terms of what makes for a good life. I would suggest for sure getting After COVID which is on Amazon and the full title of course is Optimize Your Health in a Changing World. I put a lot of really good information in there that is a good beginning for supplementation, diet, all the things that we’ve been talking about today. I think beyond that, they're always free to contact me through our website. 

[01:49:49] Ashley James: Awesome. Thank you so much. Is there anything you’d like to say to wrap up today’s interview? Anything that maybe I didn’t touch on or didn’t ask that you really wanted to make sure you conveyed today?

[01:50:03] Dr. Oz Garcia: You and I covered a lot of territory. And I want to emphasize something that I had mentioned we talked about albeit briefly which is happiness, that to the extent that you look at happiness also as a study, something that you can unpack and put together, so that your life has meaning, is meaningful, and you find that there's purpose to it, that's the message that I want to leave everybody because that's where I wound up, that's where I am these days. How do I have meaning, purpose, happiness, contentment, peace of mind? Those are very important features of being a human being.

[01:50:46] Ashley James: Just to reiterate. Where did you go to watch that course? Can you just let us know? Because I’m sure there are some listeners who are like “I got to go do that course right now.” 

[01:50:56] Dr. Oz Garcia: You can do the Wellbeing and Happiness course with Laurie Santos on Coursera. If you want accreditation, it’s $49; otherwise, you can do the course for free which is amazing.

[01:51:08] Ashley James: Oh my gosh, that is amazing. Thank you so much for sharing that. I love that. So here, there’s always some people who are like, “Oh, money is really tight.” And I totally get it. Money is tight for everyone right now. But to give someone the gift of happiness, a course about happiness for free, oh wonderful. I was thinking to myself, as you were talking, I’m just like, I’m giving this course. I don’t care how much it costs. I’m giving this course to my mother-in-law for Christmas. And now that I know it’s free, I’m going to give her that course, she’s going to love it. And that's a free gift, so how good is that?

[01:51:44] Dr. Oz Garcia: There are dozens of courses on Coursera of extreme high quality that are available for no cost at all. And I’m looking at which two or three other courses I’m going to be doing soon. So, can’t recommend it enough.

[01:51:59] Ashley James: Awesome. Well, thank you so much. Please come back on the show any time you have more to share. I’d love for you to come back and teach anytime you feel inspired to come back and teach more, we’d love to have you.

[01:52:09] Dr. Oz Garcia: Let’s do it. I’d love it, Ashley.

[01:52:12] Ashley James: Awesome. Thank you so much.

[01:52:14] Dr. Oz Garcia: Thank you. This was terrific. And it flew. 

[01:52:18] Ashley James: Wasn’t that an amazing episode with Dr. Oz Garcia? I am blown away. I just love him. He’s fantastic. He’s agreed to come back on the show and he’s going to share the next time he comes back on the show about the science of anti-aging and getting your cellular age to be younger and younger. You know, it seems to be a theme in my life right now because I have two things that we’re going to be talking about very soon, I’m really excited. Just a little sneak peek, no spoilers. But there's two things that have popped into my life and I really believe in divine intervention and divine timing that this podcast has taught me that. I’ve talked about it on the show before where I give this link for guests to put themselves on my calendar and I will go out and I will reach out to all kinds of really cool holistic doctors on different topics. Like I’m not going to one day I don’t just go through and go okay, heart health, people. Like I’d just go, oh, this guy wrote this book, this person, I want to get this person. Oh, I’ve heard about this person. And I’d give them all this link and then they put themselves on my calendar. And almost every time I do that, all the heart health people book themselves back-to-back. All the diabetes people book themselves back-to-back.

It happens so often that I just laugh. I go, of course, of course you guys did. Then, when I publish, I don’t always publish in the same order, sometimes I publish, I go, okay, I really feel like it’s time for this episode to come out, and I just get a feeling in my gut like okay, it’s time for this episode to come out. Then, I’ll get a listener messaging me saying, “how did you know this was the answer to my prayer? Yesterday or today, I’ve been just lost and I’ve been asking for an answer. Then, I look at my phone and I get a notification for this episode and this is the answer to what I’ve been looking for.” That happens so often. I believe in divine intervention. It is so remarkable. What started to pop up in the last month or month and a half in my life are a few things that are blowing my mind, the science behind these things. And these things are unrelated but what they have in common is they all reverse cellular age, and there's this one thing that this company actually sent it to me so I could try it myself. My husband and I are hooked. It is so cool and they did a study and they found that by using it for three months, your cells are 8 years younger after only 3 months. That just blows my mind and it takes only a few minutes a day to use this thing. We’ve been loving it. 

There's this other company who’s been around for almost 20 years. They have so many studies. It’s really, really exciting. They are able to reverse cellular age. They're able to remarkably increase stem cells in your body to the point where you can test in your blood and it’s like you’re a newborn baby. You have so many stem cells. It increases stem cells hugely. It increases peptides in the body that end up doing all these things like for us vain people, fine lines and wrinkles go away but people are noticing more flexibility. They're actually seeing that there's more muscle growth and more fat burning. They're able to bring down the stress hormones and the stress response in the body noticeably. They see it in heart rate, heart rate variability. So, the list goes on and on. It’s something that you can use at home, again, easy to use at home. I think it’s really affordable compared to like these giant machines that these holistic clinics have. So, I’m very excited because what keeps dropping in my lap is all these antiaging and reversing cellular age, decreasing oxidative stress in the body. Oh yeah, and another thing, there's been Parkinson’s patients who are shaking and then they use it and they stop shaking right away. 

So, it has this effect, calming effect on the nervous system and it stimulates the body’s ability to heal itself. How cool is that? So, I’m very excited. We’re going to be talking about that in upcoming episodes, so watch for that. But I have a feeling, I just keep getting this intuition that at least part of 2023, if not all of 2023, my podcast largely are going to be about reversing cellular age, reversing degenerative disease and supporting the body to create new healthy cells in its place. So, very excited about that. I think you should be too because it’s not that I want to live be a thousand old, yes actually I do, I think that’d be really amazing. I want to live the healthiest, youngest life possible until I’m ready to leave this world. Right? If you’ve ever been around someone who didn’t take care of their body and they were on their deathbed, it is anguish for those people. It’s sometimes years of suffering. What I want for you is to live fully, live so healthy, so happy where when you're 70, you're going “I feel better than I did when I was 20. That's what I want for you.” I want you to be outrunning the 20-year-olds when you're 70 and when you're 80 and 90, feeling absolutely on top of your game and amazing. That's what I want for all of us. So, I’m going to find those experts and I already have two lined up like I told you about. I’m going to keep finding them and like Dr. Oz Garcia, he’s going to come back on the show and share his tips and tricks because he is gorgeous. This man is so handsome, he does not look like he’s in his 70’s. He looks like he’s in his 50’s and of course, it’s because he’s living proof. He’s living what he preaches. So, get ready to feel amazing no matter what age you are by continuing to listen to the Learn True Health podcast and as always, please share this with those you care about because we got to spread this message and help all of our friends and family and co-workers to feel amazing at every age. 

Have yourself a fantastic rest of your day. Whatever holiday you celebrate, I celebrate Christmas, so Merry Christmas. Whatever holiday you celebrate in the coming months, I hope you have an amazing time and just remember, stress is the worst thing you can do for your body, so let it go. Take some deep breaths and put yourself in a position where you're feeling love and letting go of all that stress because stress is not helping you or anyone you're around. So, just focus on that. Focus on love and let go of the stress. I’m aiming for a completely stress-free holiday season this year and I think it’s going to be very healthy for me. I hope you do as well.


Get Connected with Dr. Oz Garcia







Books by Dr. Oz Garcia


After Covid: Optimize Your Health in a Changing World

Oz Garcia's The Healthy High-Tech Body

Redesigning 50: The No-Plastic Surgery Guide to 21st-Century Age Defiance

The Balance

Look and Feel Fabulous Forever