Stay Healthy Cape Town

Turns out it’s not ‘just the flu’.

I made a few notes to help you prepare for the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Probably most useful for people in and around Cape Town. tl;dr stay healthy, keep your immune system strong, sleep well, avoid leaving the house.

I’d strongly suggest you don’t have the attitude of “let’s just get the disease and get it over with”. You will probably still end up with lung damage. Watch this video. Covid19 seems to destroy the cells that make Surfactant in the lungs. Surfactant is a lipoprotein molecule that reduces the force of surface tension from water molecules on the lung tissue and helps the lungs inflate and deflate properly without the possibility of collapse from surface tension.

Let’s all agree it’s a very bad idea to go to hospital in next few weeks if you don’t have to, so try to self-isolate. Stay at home. Stay healthy.

Notes:

  • Get food for 4 weeks, obviously. Try to buy things online rather. Smoothie ingredients keep pretty well.
  • Scrub your hands well with soap, after touching anything outside your home.
  • Health supplements: Listen to this podcast. Then get: Allicin (garlic extract), Astragalus, Mushroom cocktail (Shiitake, Reishi etc), VitD3 (5000iu), VitC, Zinc. None of these will work magic, but you want your immune system to be in good shape. You can find these at places like Wellness Warehouse. See photo above.
  • Vitamin D3: As people will be spending more time indoors they may not be making as much vitamin D in their skin from sun exposure. “A meta-analysis of 25 randomized controlled trials found conducted in 14 countries found that vitamin D supplementation cut the risk of infection with respiratory illnesses by 50% in people that were vitamin D deficient and by 10% in people with normal vitamin D levels.” Make sure you get the 5000iu one – often not in the usual shelf area – have to ask for it. You want to take around 4000iu per day.
  • Antibiotics for bacterial pneumonia
  • Vaccine for viral pneumonia, if you can find this, sold out when I last checked
  • Chloroquine – Malaria drug, probably also sold out – might be hard to get a doctor to write you a script for this – high dose malaria drugs can have complications
  • You might want to get a latent TB test
  • Try to get a flu shot when available, mostly so you avoid the flu and not confuse symptoms
  • Nebuliser device + Duolin liquid (over the counter)
  • Rehidrate, a few packs
  • FFP2 masks, very close to N95 (more like N94 as in 94%). Takealot.com stocks these.
  • Goggles / glasses to remind you not to touch your eyes
  • Thermometer(s)
  • Make a daily spreadsheet log of people contact, outings, and morning body temperature readings
  • Avoid Ibuprofen, stick to Aspirin and Paracetamol
  • Sleep well
  • Keep a daily routine, stretch / mobility routine, walk, get some sun
  • Limit alcohol consumption
  • Start a text chat groups with friends to share virus news
  • Get a haircut before self-quarantine, bonus points
  • Fill up your car with fuel, have some cash with you
  • Get used to meetings via video conferencing, Skype, Jitsi Meet app works well
  • Tea, Earl Grey, loos leaf, making tea keeps you busy (-;

I’ll keep adding notes here if I find useful things to share.

Websites and news to monitor:

Lastly, seek medical advice if you feel short of breath, and… don’t eat bats!

UPDATE 19 Mar: You can also look at getting AHCC supplements, which come from shiitake mushrooms.

Cholesterol Hacking

Some notes on cholesterol hacking.

I did a last minute Vitality test last week. Cholesterol score under 5 again.

Total: 4.9
DHL: 1.51 (last test 1.21)
Tri: 1.48
LDL 2.2 mmol/L (last test 2.95) Under 2.6 is considered good it seems.

I did a one week hack of: macadamia oil, brazil nuts, high dose vit-c + lysine, niacin (the real deal, not that no-flush bs), aspirin and some collagen. I don’t claim to understand the science or which of these really have the most impact. I suspect a diet high in mono-unsaturated fat causes the liver to down regulate LDL.

If you have the time, go nerd out here: https://cholesterolcode.com/

This guy seems to 1/2 his score in 5 days – which proves diet is a major part of the story.

Peter Attia podcasts on this topic are also great (if you can follow half of what’s going on).

Obviously a one week hack is not a healthy lifestyle. This is just a collection of things I’ve found which improve the test results. These hacks seem to move HDL up and LDL down.

I should probably buy myself one of those small testing devices to experiment more.

Fasting for Fat Loss

A guide to losing 5kg of fat in ten days, using fasting and some basic gym, walking and swimming. I include a few hacks to make it easier than water fasting.

My previous fasting plan was optimised for health and cancer prevention, see: 5 Day Stoic Water Fast.

Recently I’ve tweaked my fasting for an annual fat loss programme / reboot. Here are my latest ideas and routines.

What you will need

You can find these things at pretty much any health shop and/or chemist.

  • 10 days of fasting time where you are free from social events that force you to eat or drink anything other than rooibos / mint tea
  • Coffee
  • Green tea
  • MCT oil, mostly C8 fats, a tablespoon per day max
  • Coconut oil, a teaspoon per day max
  • Collagen protein powder, two teaspoons per day
  • Cinnamon powder, add to taste
  • Potassium supplement, 2g 2x per day
  • Magnesium Glycinate supplement, 400mg 2x per day
  • Sodium (sea salt), 2g x2 per day, about three teaspoons
  • BCAA (optional – early in fasting transition), dose on the bottle
  • 5HTP (very optional – take before bedtime to help you sleep well), 100mg per day

The Basics

Make sure you read this post to understand the basics and learn about keto adaptation. I’m not a doctor. Make sure you are fairly healthy before you try this.

Fasting Routine

You should do at least 10 days of fasting. You can do 10 days in one go (advanced mode), or two 5 day fasts.

Make sure you eat zero carbs the day before you start fasting. Get into ketosis overnight.

Day 1, Morning: bulletproof coffee (with butter on Day 1), some BCAAs, magnesium, potassium, collagen protein powder, sea salt in your water. Go to gym, do squats and pull-ups, swim. Afternoon: Green tea and a teaspoon of coconut oil. Go for a lunchtime walk and an evening walk. Aim for 2 hours of walking per day. Evening: magnesium, potassium and sea salt.

Day 2, Morning: bulletproof coffee (without butter, use one tablespoon of MCT and cinnamon powder), magnesium, potassium, sea salt in your water. Go for a lunchtime walk and an evening walk. Afternoon: Green tea or black coffee with a teaspoon of coconut oil. Evening: magnesium, potassium, sea salt and 5HTP (optional).

Day 3, Morning: bulletproof coffee (without butter, just MCT and cinnamon), collagen protein powder, magnesium, potassium, sea salt in your water. Gym, do squats and pull-ups, swim. Afternoon: Green tea and a teaspoon of coconut oil. Go for a lunchtime walk and an evening walk. Evening: magnesium, potassium and sea salt.

Day 4 onwards: repeat Day 2.

The collagen protein powder contains glutamine, so you want to only use than on the gym days early on. You want to have zero glutamine for the rest of the fast – anti-cancer reasons.

Fat loss calculation

Depending on your lean muscle mass, you can lose around 400g of fat per day while fasting and doing 2 hours of walking per day.

7500 kcal per 1kg of body fat. 450 kcal per hour of walking. You’ll use about 1900 kcal per day by just being alive (depending on your lean muscle mass), and add about 1000 kcal with two hours of walking. This gives you about 3000 kcal per day, or 400g fat loss per day (3000/750=400g). About 2.5kg fat loss per week. Maybe 3kg if you are pretty big, probably 2kg if you have a smaller frame.

In my experiments I’ve lost around 500g of fat per day while fasting, around 4kg per week, or 5kg in 10 days.

Purist days

Try to have at least two consecutive water fasting days with no coffee, tea or supplements. A tablespoon of MCT is about 120 kcal. It should not have a big impact if that’s the only energy you take in for a day, but be aware of the extra energy in your calculations.

Muscle loss and re-feeding

Don’t stress about a small bit of muscle loss while you fast, it’s actually healthy to kill off some old cells, read about autophagy.

It’s important to eat healthy in the days after you finish your fasting. Rebuild your body with healthy foods.

Stats

Some of my stats. 5kg fat loss in 10 days. 500g muscle loss.

Stats, in kg

Happy health hacking, crazy kids. LLAP.

Health Sprint Feb 2017

We’re doing a 4 week health sprint in February.

Following the usual Health Guide.

Week 0: Warm up. Eat healthy. Get back to gym.
Week 1-3: Transformation challenge: fat lost + muscle gained.
Week 4: Fasting week.

At last count, we have 12 people in the group.

Metrics

I’m aiming for a 10kg transformation: fat lost + muscle gained, which I think is a good target for 5 weeks.

8kg fat loss, 2kg muscle gain.

Starting data:

The Goal

The goal of this challenge is to see if a few friends can get into this diet – get keto/fat adapted – make their brains run without glucose as primary fuel – and see if they can lose a healthy dose of body fat in five weeks.

Key things:

  • Is this a simple enough recipe / protocol to follow?
  • Are people crazy enough to do this stuff?
  • Can they stick to it for more than one 3 month cycle?
  • Can they get through the glucose withdrawal phase?
  • How do males and female experiences differ?
  • Can they get really good body transformation results?
  • …and get feedback, to improve the guide / protocol.

Remember to book your Vitality health assessment for early March.

Happy health hacking, crazy kids.

TRE in Cape Town

I recently attended a TRE – Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises session with Cath and Tom in Claremont.

“TRE is a series of exercises that assist the body in releasing deep muscular patterns of stress, tension and trauma.”

I first read about TRE here and did some research on the topic last year. I managed to figure out the exercises you need to do for TRE, but I never got around to trying it, because I figured it’s a bit weird to do on your own.

The workshop / group format was a nice way to finally experience TRE.

The exercises were pretty easy. I found the tremors to be a bit of a strange feeling, but natural and very relaxing in the end.

The session took about an hour in total.

Check it out.

Thanks Lynne.

Health Sprint Nov 2016

I’m going on a 5 week health sprint from 31 October to 2 December. I’m also doing my Vitality Health test on that last Friday.

I’ve written a fairly short Health Guide that explains the protocol I’m following.

We have 8 people in the current testing group. Feel free to join in and help test, or suggest improvements.

Metrics

I’m aiming for a 12kg transformation: fat lost + muscle gained, which I think is a good target for 5 weeks.

9kg fat loss, 3kg muscle gain.

Starting off at 90kg, 20.7% body fat, 18.8kg fat mass, 41.7kg muscle mass.

Aiming for 82kg, 9% body fat, 9.8kg fat mass, 44.7kg muscle mass.

Single digit body fat, in 5 weeks? Let’s see.

Testing the protocol

The goal of this experiment is to see if a few friends can get into this diet – get keto/fat adapted – make their brains run without glucose as primary fuel – and see if they can lose a healthy dose of body fat in five weeks.

Key things to test:

  • Is this a simple enough recipe / protocol to follow?
  • Are people crazy enough to do this stuff?
  • Can they stick to it for more than one 3 month cycle?
  • Can they get through the glucose withdrawal phase?
  • How do males and female experiences differ.
  • Can they get really good body transformation results?

Happy health hacking, crazy kids.