Paleo (f)x and the Paleo Movement with Keith Norris

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Paleo (f)x and the Paleo Movement with Keith Norris

Today we speak with co-founder of Paleo f(x), Keith Norris. I like to call Paleo (f)x the spring break of health conferences, where you binge on an assortment of health and wellness information. In today’s podcast we discuss important aspects of the paleo movement. We also delve into some interesting tangents, like women and carbs, and exciting new technologies that can help improve your health.

Dr. R’s Fast Facts

  • Paleo f(x) is the spring break of paleo events: a place where you can undergo a health and fitness binge.
  • The conference is also a great event for those looking to feel like they fit in and be surrounded by others with a similar health and fitness philosophies.
  • We also discuss
    • Why it is important for the paleo movement to constantly evolve and grow.
    • Why might women not do well on a low carb diet compared to men.
    • Exciting new technologies that leverage the paleo diet and lifestyle.

If you need help with the paleo movement, click here.

Paleo (f)x and the Paleo Movement with Keith Norris - RusioPodcast KNorris
Episode Intro 00:00:42
Paleo f(x) … 00:04:28
Takeaways from the Conference … 00:09:34
Individualizing Paleo Lifestyle … 00:13.44
Women vs. Men with Low Carbs … 00:15:55
Personalizing the Paleo Diet … 00:22:07
Technology to Better Paleo Lifestyle … 00:28:42
Episode Wrap Up … 00:37:17

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  1. Paleo f(x)™ 2017
  2. Theory2Practice

Paleo (f)x and the Paleo Movement with Keith Norris

Episode Intro

Dr. Michael Ruscio: Hey, everyone. Welcome to Dr. Ruscio Radio. This is Dr. Ruscio. I am here with Keith Norris, who probably has the best biceps in the entire paleo movement. He’s one of the masterminds behind Paleo f(x).

And we had been chatting about the upcoming event, so I thought it’d be cool to have him come on, talk a little bit about the Paleo f(x) conference, also the paleo movement, and some of his specialty within the paleo movement, which is exercise and using technology to leverage paleo principles to become as healthy as you can.

So Keith, really glad to have you here. And welcome to the show.

Keith Norris: Michael, it’s great to be here. And that’s a great intro. Thank you very much for mentioning the guns.

DrMR: Well, you’ve earned it. I don’t know how many days a week you do biceps. But you definitely—

KN: Every day that ends in Y.

DrMR: I love it. So before we jump into some of the particulars, if people haven’t heard of you, tell people a little bit about your background and how you got into the paleo movement.

KN: Yes, a little bit about my background—heavily involved in the strength and conditioning world my entire life, both as an athlete and then as a coach, and then as a trainer and an owner of gyms. And so I’ve been in this world for a long, long time. I played college football.

After my football career was done, I went into the military, spent nine years in the military. I left the military. After that period, I was at that pivotal point of, “Okay, do I go ahead and stay in for 20? Or do I go ahead and come on out?”

And at that time, I had a young family. And this was during the end of the Cold War. And I was just deployed out of my gourd by that time. It was a very hectic time to be in the military, and it was stressful, and I had a young family at that time. And I was just, “There’s no way I can pull another 11 years.”

So I left the military at that point. I dove right into the pharmaceutical industry. So yes, I worked for the dark side for many, many years. And I was the enemy for a while in Big Pharma.

And really, I went into pharmaceuticals because I believed at that time that was really helping humanity. And I was naïve at that point. I didn’t realize what I realize today.

And I don’t like to bash totally on Big Pharma. Obviously, they create and manufacture life-saving drugs. And that is true. But at the end of the day, they’re a big business that’s looking to satisfy shareholders. And so there’s a massive push for the lifestyle drugs, the next Viagra, so to speak.

So I quickly got disillusioned, being in pharmaceuticals. And that led me to start seeking other ways that I could help people.

And long story short, about ten years ago, Michelle and I—Michelle is my wife. We just ejected on the whole corporate America. We had the financial means to do so at that time.

And we just wholeheartedly just jumped ship and became what we were truly meant to be. And that’s entrepreneurs. And a result of our entrepreneurship has been our gyms, Efficient Exercise, and also Paleo f(x) and a couple of other enterprises. So that’s it in a nutshell.

Paleo f(x)

DrMR: I’m assuming you started with the gyms for a period. And then you launched into Paleo f(x) after a time focusing on the gyms. Or did they both happen at the same time?

KN: No, the gyms came first. Some people might not know that my wife Michelle is a chef. She’s a trained chef.

DrMR: That’s nice for you.

KN: Yeah, it’s beautiful for me. Yeah, because I’m a trained eater.

DrMR: Right.

KN: And she’s a trained chef. So it works out great.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: We have a good relationship in that respect. No, the gyms came first. As it happened, I partnered with a guy here in Austin, Texas, who already had an existing gym business going. And we hit it off. We had the same training ideas. And so I partnered with Mark Alexander at Efficient Exercise.

And so that was going along great. That led to the first Ancestral Health Symposium that took place in Los Angeles at UCLA. And that was 2011. I spoke at that particular conference.

And that particular conference was the first time that everyone in the paleo sphere got together in one central place. And it was a fantastic conference. It still blows me away when I think about that.

And really, that was only six years ago. And how far this movement—and it is a movement now—how far this movement has come from that period of time, 2010, 2011!

But the result of that, AHS, your listeners may or may not know, is the very academic arm of the paleo movement. And so that conference was very academic leaning. It was a fantastic conference, but at the same time, there wasn’t much rubber-meets-the-road material there because, obviously, it’s an academic conference. That’s not what they’re designed to do.

And Michelle and I were actually getting ready to fly back to Austin, sitting on the tarmac at LAX. And if anybody has ever flown out of LAX, you know you can spend a lot of time sitting on the tarmac sometimes.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: So anyway, that gave us an opportunity to discuss. And we thought, “What would a conference look like that was a little bit more theory-to-practice, more rubber-meets-the-road, where the person who’s not an academic but is a lay person can get a lot out of it?”

And so that was actually the forethought to Paleo f(x). And then we had—I would say we had the balls. It was more we were crazy enough to run with the idea.

DrMR: Right.

KN: 90% of entrepreneurship is not to be intelligent enough to say no.

DrMR: I like that.

KN: So yeah, we ran with it. And yeah, Paleo f(x) has turned out what’s it has turned out to be today, which is 6000 attendees and a massive space at the Palmer Events Center in Austin, Texas. And we’ve loved every minute of it.

I take that back. That’s a lie. We have not loved every minute!

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: That is a total lie. It has been a grind at times. But it is a grind of passion, and we are very, very passionate about it. And now, it’s at a point where, yeah, it is pleasurable most of the time.

So yeah, that’s how we got to the Paleo f(x) point of things.

DrMR: And it really has grown remarkably fast in the, I think it’s four years, that I have been involved in it. Just year over year, it has grown a tremendous amount.

And what I’ve always really liked about the Paleo f(x) conference is there’s really something for everyone from an application standpoint. You have things all the way down toward—you’ll see a group of people doing a movement workshop outside with their shoes off, and then you might have a nerd like me inside talking about personalizing the paleo diet based upon your gut imbalances and what the best personalized way to apply a paleo diet for someone who has IBS or IBD might be.

So you have this broad range. But like you said, Keith, all very applicable. And I think the nice thing that you guys added that was different than the Ancestral Health Symposium was really getting some of the more practical aspects of exercise, where there are a lot of those workshops, and walking around on the exhibitor floor, there are all sorts of cool, functional exercise equipment or tools that are being tested.

And I like to say it’s kind of like the spring break for paleo in a healthy way, where you just binge and purge. But instead of doing shot guns and funneling beers, you’re having a kombucha and doing some kind of cool squat analysis or what have you.

KN: Right.

Takeaways from the Conference

DrMR: So yeah, let’s talk a little bit more about the event. For people that maybe haven’t heard of it or don’t know much about it, what would you say are some of the things that people could really take away from the conference? And that’s a really broad question. I realize that because there’s so much.

KN: Yeah.

DrMR: But what would you say to people who are maybe thinking about attending but don’t know a whole lot about it?

KN: Well, first of all, I love that tagline, “the spring break of paleo.” So I’m going to steal that, if you don’t mind.

DrMR: Yeah, go ahead.

KN: No, it’s true. It’s a great analogy. We get messages from many attendees who tell us, “Going to Paleo f(x) is the one place and the one time of year where I feel totally normal. And all my quirks and all of my idiosyncrasies seem totally normal to everybody here.”

So yeah, that’s the one thing—the networking, the ability to rub elbows with other people who are inclined. And I think what it is, is these people realize that they are empowered to take charge of their own health. And that’s really what it boils down to.

And taking charge of their own health means different things to different people depending on where they are currently. So some people—and I would count myself in that camp—came into this already pretty healthy. I really didn’t have any issues that I needed to work on.

And really, I came into the movement more from the sporting performance side of things. And I just got sidetracked into, “Oh yeah, this can be healthy, too. So you mean I can be a great athlete and be healthy at the same time?” That was something novel to me.

And it’s something I wrestled with as an athlete when I was younger, the realization that being at the top of your game athletically doesn’t mean that you’re at the top of your game health-wise, because the two are many times mutually exclusive.

What healthy means to an athlete is healthy enough to get on the field. And internally—and you’ve probably spoken with Dallas Hartwig about this—that if you took a blood draw on these top-end athletes, it would look horrible, just absolutely terrible. I went completely off track there.

But for the most part, yeah, there is something for everybody at Paleo f(x), from the very academic leaning, because we do have people like you who are speaking at a higher level, all the way down to, like you said, the movement sessions. And we do have panels and we have speakers who are more on a lay person level.

And I say “we” because it’s mostly Michelle. Michelle is actually the CEO of the whole show. I still haven’t figured out what I do at Paleo f(x). They just keep me around—I don’t know—and let me run the show.

No, actually, my point in the whole venture is just a 30,000-foot view of where the show is going, where we think it ought to be. And that’s what I can do. That’s what I can add to it.

DrMR: So there are a couple things I wanted to pick your brain on specifically. Let’s maybe start with one I’d like to get your take on, because we talk a lot on this podcast about more specific, maybe healthcare-condition-related items. If someone has SIBO, how they can eat and live for that. Or if they have hypothyroid, what they can do.

But maybe taking us a level up and looking at this kind of, like you said, in a 30,000-foot view perspective—how people can individualize the paleo lifestyle. I want to start with that.

And then I want to also move to—I know you, like I said in the intro, use different pieces of technology to try to help people more efficiently apply paleo diet and lifestyle principles. So I definitely want to come to that next.

Individualizing Paleo Lifestyle

But first, what are some things you’ve learned about individualizing the paleo lifestyle so that people can feel better and perform better?

KN: Yeah, so as I’ve taken this path and, I would say, I’ve been on this paleo path for—Wow! This is going to sound crazy. It’s over 17 years now.

I started off back in ’98, ’99, around that period of time. And this was the emergence of the easy communication through the internet. And God! That makes me sound so freaking old. But it’s true.

DrMR: Right.

KN: The internet came about. And now, we have this ease of communication and message boards. And I ran into these two freaks, Robb Wolf and Art DeVany, on message boards. And that’s how I got into this path.

But yeah, the individualization portion of it is hugely important. I think we can all agree that everybody would be much better off not eating sugar. And I think everybody can pretty much agree on that.

But even after that, it starts to get to the point where it’s individualized. Some people do very, very well on a higher starch diet.

Some people, like myself, do much better on a high fat diet. In fact, my diet right now is high fat, moderate protein, and scant carbohydrate. But I also roll in intermittent fasting into that and a number of other tweaks. But that works for me.

I’ve had clients, females in particular, where more of a ketogenic diet like that is a train wreck. And we don’t really know why. Maybe you can shed some light on that. But females are just much more complicated at a hormonal level. And I’ve just never seen females turn out well or have good outcomes on the long haul on the ketogenic diet.

Women vs. Men with Low Carbs

DrMR: Yeah, I’ve got something really quick to interject there.

KN: Sure, yeah.

DrMR: And I’m definitely speculating a little bit, but in some of the microbiota research coming out of hunter/gatherer bands in Africa, they’re actually finding that the microbiotas of the women are different from the men, likely because the women are spending more time foraging and having to break down more carbohydrates and sometimes more starchy and fibrous carbohydrates. So they’ve adapted a microbiota that’s a little bit more consistent with that.

And that always got me thinking that perhaps the reason why women may tend not to do as well on a lower carb diet like more men do—and I when I say lower carb, I mean more toward a ketogenic, which is very low carb—might be because of this evolutionary development perspective where women likely did most of the foraging and men were doing more of the hunting.

And men may have had a higher reliance on those fat-rich animal proteins that they would hunt, because we all have heard the minimal foraging theory, which states that when we would try to hunt for food, specifically the types of meat that had higher fat had more calories per pound. And therefore, you got more calories for less energy invested into acquiring that animal.

So we tended to try to hunt fattier animals rather than thinner animals. And so men may have, just by default, had more access to a lower carb diet, whereas women may have spent more time foraging things like berries and nuts and other fruits and snacking along the way, one would logically think.

And so there may have been an evolutionary pressure that led to that. I’m definitely speculating. But that’s one theory that I am foiling on in my mind into that regard, Keith.

KN: No, it makes total sense. And this is one thing that I love about the paleo community—the fact that everybody realizes that this is not a hard and fast template. And it’s the great experiment.

And it’s almost like the founding fathers talking about the great American experiment. They didn’t know that the way they set up this republic was going to work. It was an experiment in their minds. And it hadn’t been done before.

It’s like the same attitude is present in the movers and shakers in the paleo community. It is an experiment. And we give ourselves the leniency to test out theories and to work it out and see how it plays out.

Two, three years ago, I think most people would have said, “Oh, yeah. The ketogenic diet is for everybody—male, female. Everybody’s going to do well on this.”

And then you roll it along for a few years. And you find out, “Huh. The females aren’t really doing really well on this, at least in the long term.”

And then you get theories like yours that, hey, maybe they were spending much more time gathering and had more access to starches than the males. And maybe that’s why. But yeah, very plausible theory. I think that plays out fine.

I know in practice, again taking theory to practice—in practice, I don’t know why necessarily it doesn’t work. I just know it doesn’t work in most females.

DrMR: Right. Sure. Sure. So any other insights that you think might be helpful for people regarding individualization of the paleo diet or lifestyle?

KN: Yeah, so it’s interesting you bring this up. So a friend of mine who is, among other things, a geneticist. He’s really a polymath. And he’ll be at Paleo f(x) this year. He’s really going to blow some minds.

But when you start diving into the methylation cycles and the mitochondrial health of individuals, you can really start to individualize and pinpoint either supplementation or dietary changes specific to that person’s genetic profile, which makes it interesting again.

Okay, so that’s another bit of information we can look at. And I would imagine we could do the same thing if you have information on gut biota.

Then you’re really starting to pinpoint at the individual level how this person should supplement, how this person should eat, and even how this person should train as far as their movement patterns.

The guy’s name is Ryan Frisinger, by the way. And he’s really going to be someone to see at Paleo f(x) because he has some pretty profound ideas and some ideas that are pretty far out of the box. He’s going to cause people to think. He’s going to cause people to ask questions.

And these are the types of people we love to bring into Paleo f(x). We pride ourselves on not being an echo chamber. And we realize the death of any movement is when it does become an echo chamber. And so we seek to pull in people like Ryan Frisinger.

We have had Keifer in years past, who is definitely not a proponent of the paleo diet. And he’ll tell you straight up that he’s not. And we can disagree and argue, but these are the type of things that push the movement forward.

I’ve been involved in other entities. I don’t want to bring them up to bash them. But in the strength and conditioning realm, those entities become echo boxes. And eventually, the movement goes nowhere. It just stalls because differing ideas are pushed out. They’re not even brought to the floor. They can’t even speak if they don’t toe the party line, so to speak.

So that’s one thing we were very, very proud of, and we’re very cognizant of at Paleo f(x), is to bring in outside ideas because they do push us in ways.

Personalizing the Paleo Diet

DrMR: And I think you guys have been very good about that. And I think that has hopefully been one of the reasons why the paleo movement hasn’t drifted into that territory that you described, Keith, of having a sclerosis of the philosophy.

KN: Right.

DrMR: And yeah, I think that’s definitely hugely important, because for something to remain relevant, it has to continue to adapt, just like an organism has to adapt to a changing environment. And that’s one thing I’m hoping to bring this year with the talk that hopefully I’ll be doing on personalizing the paleo diet.

And I think one of the things that the audience is privy to is that when people have gastrointestinal conditions like IBS or IBD, amongst others, your more typical, higher fiber paleo diet doesn’t really work well for them.

And not to go too far down this tangent because I know the audience has heard me talk about this ad nauseum, but I think it is something that will be helpful for other aspects of the paleo community to hear.

There’s a bolus of information right now on research coming out of hunter/gatherer bands in Africa, which is great because this gives us a very paleo-like sample. But the challenge is that’s a very equatorial sample. It’s a very narrow band of the sample.

And if you look, the anthropology literature has pretty clearly borne out that there is what’s known as a latitudinal discrepancy in macronutrient composition, meaning the closer to the poles you get, the colder the climate, the lower the carb intake is.

And so one of the challenges that I think the movement is facing right now is getting so excited about all this cool microbiota literature we’re getting from all these stool samples from hunter/gatherers in Africa and trying to superimpose those findings about their microbiotas and their diets onto the entire population, especially when a large part of that might be northern European descent and not do well with that kind of higher carb, higher fiber diet.

So sometimes, I feel like I’m the only person making this recommendation, because some of my colleagues, whom I respect dearly, I think are getting a little bit too swept into the microbiota craze and forgetting to take a step back and say, “As interesting as this microbiota stuff coming out of Africa right now is, we have to take a step back, take a deep breath, and look at this in the broader context.”

Look at some of the IBS and IBD literature, where people go on higher carb diets and do a lot worse, or higher fiber diets and do a lot worse.

And maybe realize that part of the reason for this is because we’re trying to take findings from the equatorial region in Africa and apply them to everybody. And of course, that violates the whole individualization thing that we spoke about a moment ago and, therefore, leads to some problems.

KN: Yeah, you’re totally right. So when I look at those studies too, I have to question. And I’ve talked with Ryan about this. If you look at my 23andMe data, my genetic data, I am 99%+ northern European. So how relevant are those studies to me?

DrMR: Right.

KN: And I would say, as well, I’m off the charts high in Neanderthal percentage, which Michelle could tell you. I could’ve told you that.

DrMR: She’d agree with you on that one? Yeah.

KN: She would totally agree. She’s like, “Well, I could’ve told you that.”

But seriously, how relevant are those studies to me? They are relevant to a certain extent. Yeah, you look at them, but then I have to weigh that against my own genetic profile. And then I have to weigh that empirically against how I feel and my body composition and my blood work, vis-à-vis the diet that I have been on for the past year, which is very, very high fat and very scant carbohydrate.

My blood work bears out that everything is cool, my body composition, the way I feel subjectively, all of these things. And I just keep rocking right on along with this very high fat, moderate protein, scant carbohydrate diet.

So yeah, all of these are good points. And all of these need to be weighed. And all of these points need to be parsed out. But again, the paleo community is better than any other community that I have seen in any other discipline.

And again, I’ve been heavily involved on the strength and conditioning side of things. I’ve also been heavily involved back in the day in the political arena.

And both of those arenas just become echo chambers for the same information over and over and over. And neither of those entities ever grow past a certain point because they become echo chambers.

But the paleo community is not that way at all. There’s constantly new information coming out. All of these things are parsed by very, very intelligent people. And the discussions are, in a way, civil with the intent on finding out the truth and what the truth of the answer is and not to be “right.”

And if you have that within a community, that community is going to do nothing but get stronger and stronger and stronger. Or if you want to look the way Gary Taubs looks at it, it would be—not Gary Taubs. Taleb—the anti-fragile guy. Nassim Taleb.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: There we go.

DrMR: Yep.

KN: Anti-fragile is the word I was looking for. It becomes stronger because of the tests and because of the stressors like a human immune system should be.

DrMR: Right. Yeah.

KN: So yeah, that’s just to say, am I a fan of the paleo movement, the paleo community? Yeah, you bet I am.

DrMR: Yeah, I agree with what you’re saying so much, which is, maybe to say it in a different way, if you make growth and updating of the opinion part of a philosophy, then you have a pretty strong philosophy because it’s going to be able to self-correct itself.

KN: Yep, totally.

Technology to Better Paleo Lifestyle

DrMR: Yeah. And this is a question I’ve really been wanting to ask you. What about some cool technologies to help people better utilize the paleo diet or lifestyle, because I know that you come into contact with a lot of people who are starting new, whether it’s an app or a training tool or a piece of exercise equipment or what have you. And I know you do a lot of self-experimentation.

So what are some cool things that people might want to look into that may help them better utilize some of these dietary and lifestyle principles that the paleo movement embodies?

KN: Yeah, so we really, really take technology to heart. One of the other business entities that I’m involved in is ARX FIT Equipment. And if you’ve been to Paleo f(x), you’ve seen our equipment on the floor, because obviously we’re a little bit biased. We’re going to have that equipment for the center on the floor.

DrMR: Right.

KN: But it is truly leveraging technology at its best. And this is just one example. I can think of a ton of examples. But it’s motorized exercise equipment, and it’s very, very safe.

I won’t dive into it in depth, but it’s set up in such a way to where the workouts not only can be but have to be very, very truncated because of the energy expenditure and the recovery necessary after a bout of exercise on this equipment.

So that’s one way to leverage technology. We all realize that the human body must move. I always say that the human as an organism was an obligate mover and an opportunistic eater. If you look at any hunter/gatherer society, that’s just the way it pans out. And so movement is first and foremost.

Now, everybody has their likes and dislikes as it comes to movement. My particular favorites, because I think they’re big bang for the buck, are lifting weights and sprinting. Those are two of the big things that I both enjoy doing.

And I guess I’m lucky in that I enjoy them, but I also think they’re the biggest bang for the buck that you can get in the exercise realm. Lift something heavy and sprint. Now, we’re getting in—that’s the format.

DrMR: Sure.

KN: But the paleo movement is diverse enough to be able to take in parkour, to be able to take in MovNat, BJJ—all of these different exercise modalities.

If it’s good to you and you like doing it and you will be consistent at it, which is the first and foremost—you have to be consistent in whatever it is. And I don’t care what the modality is. Pick the modality, but you must be consistent at it.

So yeah, in the exercise realm, there’s the ARX FIT thing. I think on the Paleo f(x) floor, you will just see a plethora of different bio hacking technologies. And oh, wow! I could go on and on about this.

Some of the coolest stuff that I’ve seen and something that will be on the floor at this year’s show is—and I’m going to butcher the name. It’s a Scandinavian name. I think it’s Valkyrie or something like that.

What it is, is it’s a light device that—it looks like a pair of ear buds that you just stick in your ear. What many people might not realize is that there are light receptors both in the nasal cavity and in the ear canals, more so in the nasal cavity, but to a heavy extent in the ear canal.

And so this device is used for seasonal affective disorders or for jetlag to recalibrate your circadian rhythms when you’re hopping time zones quite a bit. Or say you live in Seattle or Portland, one of those environments where it’s just kind of gray and drizzly for much of the winter.

So what you would do is you wear this device. And it emits light into your ear canal. And it helps you reset your circadian rhythms. And it helps with seasonal affective disorder and things of that nature. So that’s a cool, noninvasive hack technology. They will be on the Paleo f(x) floor.

There’s a myriad of measuring devices. And we use just FitBit just for a general idea of what these devices are. But things that can measure anything from heart rate variability to the number of steps you take in a certain day. It is just a myriad of things like that.

I think heart rate variability is something that’s a very, very easy thing to track. And it gives you a big bang for the buck.

DrMR: Agreed.

KN: So the downside of technology is you get too wrapped up into it. And you become a slave to the technology versus the other way around, much like people who obsess about diet. It’s the same thing. You need to put some perspective on this.

And if you’re totally wrapped up in either the device or the diet, that’s not doing you a service either. So you need to find a happy medium there.

And I think things like heart rate variability are very, very big bang for the buck. It doesn’t take a whole lot of testing time. It doesn’t take a whole lot of expertise to know how to read and to know how to use it. And the same thing with the light emitting device—it’s very, very easy.

Michelle and I hop time zones quite often. So this is a device that we can use to reset after hopping time zones. We’re lucky enough to live in Austin, so the seasonal affective disorder is really not there for us. I was outside tanning today in the middle of February. We live in Austin. So we have access to that, which is cool.

And I think, too, you’re going to see starting to roll down the pike the whole idea behind citizen science and doing very, very easy bio hacks and tracking the results of those bio hacks and then comparing results to other people.

For instance, I’m just getting near the end of a 40 gram per day fish oil experiment bio hack.

DrMR: Wow.

KN: Which is, as you can imagine, quite a bit of fish oil.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: But why would someone do such a thing? Well, there are a lot of reasons. Many of them are cognitive benefits. There’s some inflammation attenuation. There’s gut healing that comes from doing this. And we’re doing this for 30 days, doing a 30-day run of it.

But yeah, so that’s way on the other end. That’s on the very little technology needed but on the bio hacking end, which I think is very, very cool as well.

When we talk about devices, like I say, I would caution people not to get totally involved in the device and to look for those things that are big bang and with very little intrusive properties.

Michelle uses a sleep app as well to track her sleep to see if her sleep quality is on the up and up, length of time. I think those things are very helpful because a lot of people may think that they’re sleeping very well. And Michelle was one of them.

But in actuality, they’re up a lot. Or they’re in the non-REM stages of sleep far too long. So those things are pretty noninvasive. And those are cool too.

And all of these technologies and some that will blow your mind will be on the floor at Paleo f(x).

DrMR: Nice. Nice. Yeah, it sounds like a few tools that are pretty cool there. And I also totally agree with your not over utilizing technology and driving yourself bonkers and looking for things that are simple and practical and deliver a pretty big bang for your buck. So totally in agreement on that.

Episode Wrap Up

And Keith, where can people, if they want to connect with you, connect with you? And where can they find out more about the Paleo f(x) conference?

KN: Yeah, so my personal blog is Theory2Practice. And that’s at the unfortunate domain name of, which I realize that’s a marketing faux pas. But there’s a long story behind that. But if you just Google “theory to practice and Keith Norris,” it’ll lead you right there.

On the Paleo f(x) side of things, it’s And this year’s show will be May 19-21 in beautiful Austin, Texas.

And if you haven’t been to Paleo f(x), like Michael said before, it is the spring break of the paleo community. I love that. I love that tagline. It really is.

And it is networking like you can’t imagine. It’s being around thousands of people who are as quirky and idiosyncratic as the person listening to this show might be.

It’s a learning opportunity. Over 100 speakers—120-ish, I think, at our last count. And all of these people are super approachable. Michael, I think you can probably attest to that.

DrMR: Absolutely.

KN: None of these people love to hide in the green room all day. They’re out on the floor. They’re talking with people. People will come there to podcast from the floor. And it’s just a great environment. And it’s a great show. I am a little biased.

DrMR: No, you’re right. And it’s nice also to sometimes put a face to the voice, if you’ve been listening to someone’s podcast or if you’ve been reading someone’s blog, to see them, just to get that person-to-person interaction.

And if you don’t necessarily have a chance to have a one-on-one conversation with somebody, you can at least hear them speak or watch them in a panel.

And it’s nice just to get that because, kind of like you were hinting at, Keith, with finding other people who have the same idiosyncrasies that you do, it’s another layer of building that community feeling where now this person that you’ve been reading for a year, you’ve actually heard them speak and met them and had a chance. So now, when you read their work, you actually can picture this person in your head.

And I think it just gives us this enriching experience to all this information that we follow via, whether it be text or audio or whatever.

KN: Truly. And I think, too, when you go to Paleo f(x), you realize what a healthy diet and lifestyle do for people because the people there are just beautiful.

DrMR: Oh my God! Yeah.

KN: It’s just a sea of beautiful people. In fact, we have a friend who lives in downtown Austin. And she was saying, “I just want to thank you for bringing thousands of hot guys to downtown Austin. I just want to thank you for that.”

DrMR: Awesome.

KN: But yeah, it’s true. Diet, living right, moving—these things do a body good. And this is the phenotype that people are supposed to express. This is truly what normal and healthy should look like is what you see at Paleo f(x).

DrMR: Absolutely. Absolutely. And that really struck me. My first year in attendance, I was blown away because there was not anyone who was in bad physical condition anywhere in the conference.

KN: Yeah.

DrMR: That was one of the things where I said, “Well, this is, if nothing else, a nice affirmation of, if you follow this philosophy, what it can do for you.” Totally.

KN: Yeah, although we’re quick to tell people, “If you are out of shape, this is for everybody. Everybody has to start somewhere.”

DrMR: Right. Yeah.

KN: And we are very encouraging of those who feel like they’re out of shape, who feel like they’re sick, who feel like they’re broken. Come to Paleo f(x) and get encouraged.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: Because everybody has to take that first step.

DrMR: And everyone is inviting.

KN: They are.

DrMR: So yeah, if you are someone who’s saying to yourself, “I’m not in good shape,” I would only anticipate you would be met with open arms and encouragement by anybody there.

KN: Oh, absolutely. Yep.

DrMR: This is not an elitist sort of thing by any means. Yeah.

KN: No, because there are many people there who, themselves, have had tremendous transformation stories. And so they can relate. A lot of the people there can relate to being out of shape, to being overweight, to being sick and broken.

DrMR: Yeah.

KN: Yeah.

DrMR: Some people look good on the outside. But they’re still suffering with food allergies or whatever it is.

KN: Sure. Absolutely. Totally.

DrMR: Everyone is there to get better. And some people are further along that road than others. But we’re all trying to move in the same direction.

KN: Totally.

DrMR: Definitely.

KN: Totally. Totally.

DrMR: Well, Keith, thanks so much, my man, for taking the time. And I guess, I’ll see you in Austin.

KN: Absolutely. We’re looking forward to it.

DrMR: Me too, buddy. Thanks again.

KN: All right. Yup.

DrMR: Bye-bye.

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