We want to feel good. We want mental wellness. To provide insights into achieving it, today’s guest brings his expertise in nutritional biochemistry. In this episode, Dr. Shawn Talbott, the Chief Science Officer of Amare Global, exposes the human body’s secrets to maximizing mental wellness and a good mood. He describes the role of the gut-brain-axis in mental wellness and how the feedback mechanism functions between the food eaten, the gut, and the brain. Dr. Shawn found that people who feel better because of good nutrition change their biochemistry and make better lifestyle choices. Tune in to this episode to learn more about optimizing your mental wellbeing.

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The Future Of Nutrition With Dr. Shawn Talbott

In this episode, we have Dr. Shawn Talbott, who is a PhD in the realm of Nutritional Biochemistry, and he is also the Chief Science Officer for Amare, which is a company that’s doing some amazing things in the nutritional space, and it’s something that I have a particular interest in. I’m very happy to have him on the show. Without further ado, Shawn, tell us about what you’re doing at Amare and a little bit about your background, and then we’re going to get right into it.

At Amare, we have a tagline. Our tagline is The Mental Wellness Company. Everything that we do comes back to some aspect of mental wellness. Your mood, your stress levels, your anxiety, your mental focus, your sleep quality, your energy levels, all that stuff falls under mental wellness. With my background, as you said, I have a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry, but the work that I do these days is sometimes called Nutritional Psychology.

We’re looking at how food and nutrients and supplements impact biochemistry, things like cortisol, neurotransmitters, inflammatory markers, and that stuff. How does that biochemistry impact psychology, how we feel, and how we perform mentally? That’s why we base the whole company around. It’s the right place at the right time because everybody is talking about mental health right now, post-pandemic. It’s a good place to be.

One of the studies that I always harken back to and I tell everybody around me is that if you drink four cups a day of coffee, it’s equivalent to an antidepressant, like SSRI. We know that there are these things out there that have the ability to be as effective and maybe a little bit more benign than some of the medications that are out there. Starting from, let’s say, depression, how is it that you are able to tailor a person’s diet or supplement regimen to make them less symptoms of depression?

There’s a good body of research now around diet and mental well-being. We know pretty convincingly that if somebody eats a standard American diet, lots of processed food, low fiber, low fruits and vegetables, high in salt and sugar and processed, we know that that’s highly associated with more depression and more anxiety. We know the flip of that is also true.


FSP - DFY 11 Shawn Talbott | Future Of Nutrition


In fact, studies have been done to show we can take somebody off of a standard American diet and put them on a Mediterranean-style diet that has more fruits and vegetables, more fiber, healthy fats, that stuff, it’s not only preventative for depression, but it is also therapeutic for depression. You can take people who are depressed, put them on that diet for six weeks, and within that timeframe, they are no longer depressed at the end.

It tells us lots of things. It tells us that diets are related to mental well-being, but it also tells us that how you feel is not in your head, it’s also in your gut. It’s what we feed ourselves. We can maybe talk about this later. It’s getting us to a point where we can be precision nutrition and we can say, “What is it about the gut and the microbiome, the bacteria in the gut and your gut lining?”

We can get very precise about targeting the nutrients that we give to people to say, “These are going to increase your good bacteria and they’re going to make more serotonin and you’re going to be happier,” as one example. That’s where the whole field is going, that it’s not just a brain thing. When we talk about mental wellness, it is a whole-body thing. We talk a lot about the gut-brain axis and the microbiome, and we can unpack that as we go through our discussion.

Mental wellness is not just about the brain. It’s about the entire body.

I would love to unpack it because I feel like in medical school, I know a lot about how nutrition can affect us in the short term. When you eat a big meal, you have this feeling of lethargy and slowness. That’s something that is very much tied to your diet. That’s something that I’ve learned not only from medical school but personal experience. I’m sure many of our readers have eaten a big meal and they feel like popping on the couch and they don’t want to do anything.

The long-term effects are something that I want to talk about because the insidious of mental illness is that it affects you in the long term. It makes something more difficult for you to do that otherwise would be easy. Those long-term effects are something I’m particularly interested in because I want to make sure that I’m performing at the optimal level, not from hour to hour, but in general. We’ll talk about diet. I do want to talk a little bit about supplements, and specifically diet, how are you changing somebody’s diet regimen and what are the effects that you’re seeing downstream of that?

The downstream effects are important because when I talk about mental wellness, I try to educate people about mental wellness existing on a continuum. A lot of times, people will hear me say mental wellness and they’ll automatically default to thinking in their heads, “Mental illness. That’s not me. I’m not depressed. I don’t have anxiety. I don’t have burnout.”

They think, “Maybe that’s not an issue for me.” That’s one part of the whole mental wellness continuum that we’re all on. A lot of people, probably a lot of the readers right now, are in the middle of that mental wellness continuum where you feel fine. You feel okay. You don’t feel great. You might feel blah. The stereotype is that you’re going to feel a little fatigued during the day. You’re going to feel a little bit of brain fog. You maybe can’t relax quite enough at night to get good quality sleep.

Most people look at that and go, “That seems normal. That seems like modern life. It seems like I’m busy. I’ve got a job, kids, a spouse, and all these responsibilities. I’m supposed to feel that way.” What I want them to realize is that that is not the normal human condition. The normal human condition is abundant energy during the day. You’re able to turn it on when you want to turn it on. You’re able to turn it off and relax and get good quality relaxation and good quality sleep at night. Most people hear me say that and they go, “Sure, but not for me.” That’s what I mean when I talk about mental wellness.

I used to do a lot of work. The early part of my career was more what you would consider to be a sports nutritionist. A lot of work for the US Track & Field Association, the US Ski team, and Olympic training centers, trying to get those people who are at the high end of the mental wellness continuum. On a scale of 1 to 10, they might be a 9, but if you’re working with an Olympic athlete who’s a 9, they want to be a 9.1, a 9.2, or 9.3. They get that competitive edge. We’re using some of the same techniques now and mainstreaming them so that the average person that wants to perform their best can do that in the context of their stressful life.

I love where that whole field is going. It started out with high-performance athletes and now it’s becoming a lot more egalitarian.

It’s trickling down a little bit, isn’t it?

Even my wife and I talk about this all the time. When we were growing up, the concept of calories wasn’t a thing. The idea of going out to eat, you weren’t looking at the healthier option. There wasn’t a lot of healthy options out there available. Now there are. I do like the way that the field is trending. Do you find that more people are adopting that or is it the same types of people? That’s one of the things I was worried about because I’m pursuing this in my own life, but I know I’m a very driven person. Are you seeing people that are maybe in the middle or the lower end of the spectrum when it comes to wellness, seeking your services out?

That’s the best part of it to see. There’s always going to be the high performers that are always looking for that edge. They’ll readily adopt this stuff. They’ll go, “Let me try it and if I can get that competitive edge. Good, I’m doing all these other things. Let me try this too.” Where we’re seeing the biggest changes are that average person that thinks they’re fine and then they do some of the supplements that we have or some of the diet therapies or some of the movement programs that we have.

There are all kinds of ways we can improve mental wellness. That person will do it and they will come back and they’ll go, “I didn’t even know I had brain fog until it went away. I didn’t even know I was fatigued until my energy came back. I didn’t even know I was tense until I was able to calm down and get a good night’s sleep.”

There are those regular people that are leveling up in terms of their mental and physical performance, which is great. We have a lot of people who are at the low end of the mental wellness continuum. They might have a little depression or a little anxiety or something like that, and they’ve gone the traditional route. They’ve tried a sleep drug, an antidepressant, an anti-anxiety drug and it hasn’t quite gotten them to feel they want to feel. Those drugs change how you feel, but they don’t make you feel good. There’s a lot of people, millions of people have been down that road and said, “That isn’t what I’m looking for. That didn’t do it for me.”

They’re starting to look at some of these natural therapies and because the natural therapies are much more holistic, it’s not working on your serotonin pathway, for example, as a Prozac would do. It’s working on the coordination of your neurotransmitters. They feel a lot better. That person’s at the low end of the continuum. Now you can move them up into the middle of the continuum so they feel “normal” again. They start to think, “What else could I do? Could I level up? Could I get better?” That’s what’s cool to see when someone has that journey of getting better and better and better. It’s good for them. It’s also good for their families. It’s good for their friends and coworkers and everybody they interact with.

I had a guy on that was a public health researcher, and he found that your ability to become healthy affects downstream your family, your friends, everything like that. One person adopting a healthier lifestyle has a lot of downstream effects. We’re beginning to measure those things. Let’s talk a little bit about measurement because I feel like that’s something, especially in the nutritional setting, that I don’t know what the objective difference is between one thing versus another.


FSP - DFY 11 Shawn Talbott | Future Of Nutrition


What are you measuring when it comes to, let’s say, performance, longevity, or mental health? Give me some of the measurements that you’re seeing, like when somebody undergoes a lifestyle change like that, that I can say, “This is something that I can look to as an objective indicator of increased health.

In the clinical trials that we do, we’ll do a lot of measurements. When we measure mood state, we’re looking to see whether people are feeling better. A lot of times, people will look at that and go, “Those are squishy measurements. You’re asking people if they’re feeling better. That’s not real data.” How we measure it is with very well-designed, validated psychological metrics. Things like a profile of mood states. If we’re looking at a sleep study, we use the Pittsburgh sleep quality inventory, things that have been validated and are objective measurements. They’re still surveys, but they’re validated. Profile of mood states is one of my favorites because it will give you an overall score, like a well-being score called global well-being.

You can have subscales and you can dial down into each of those subscales and you can see if somebody is feeling better because they’re less depressed or because they’re less anxious or because they’re less fatigued. Sometimes, depending on the intervention, someone will feel overall better and it’s all due to an antidepressant effect, or they’ll feel a little bit better. It’s all due to an anti-fatigue effect.

It’s good to be able to slice and dice that a little bit because there are all sorts of different mood states. Somebody who feels better because they’re less stressed, that’s different than somebody who feels better because they’re more energetic. As I said before, we’re getting to the point where we can be like precision nutrition a little bit. That’s how we do the psychology piece of it.

As a nutritional biochemist, I want to know the mechanism. I want to know exactly why they’re feeling better. We also routinely will measure microbiome panels. We’re taking fecal samples for that. We’re measuring inflammatory markers either in the saliva or the blood. We’re measuring stress hormones in saliva. In some studies, we’re even looking at lipid panels like cholesterols, triglycerides, glucose levels, and all that stuff because what we want to do is be able to link objective biochemistry to subjective psychology and be able to see what the mechanisms are. If we lower cortisol by 20%, what does that do to somebody’s overall stress levels and vice versa?

That’s where I feel like a lot of people in the medical profession get a little bit hesitant to even get involved in nutrition because there are no objective measurements right now. When we look at nutrition, we’re looking at things like pre-albumin, which is an indicator of overall nutritional status. It’s not so much a very pinpoint surgical look at, “This person has less cortisol. That means that they might be feeling better.” That’s been backed up by the way that the person is feeling.

In a trial a couple of years ago, we’re trying to get to the point of saying, “How does this all impact?” We can be very isolationist and reductionist and say, “We fed people this and their microbiome did that,” or we can even look into the microbiome and say, “Your akkermansia went up 20% and your lactobacillus went up 18%.” We can do that stuff. We wanted to look more globally and say, what is this doing for the people’s lives?

We designed a trial where we said, “Here’s the regimen we’re going to put you on. Probiotics, prebiotics, proteins, and healthy nutrition set. We told the people in the trial, “Do not change your diet patterns. Do not change your exercise patterns. Don’t sleep better. Just do your normal thing. We’re going to follow your blood chemistry over time.”

We measured their blood, their saliva, and their microbiome. We did all this stuff and all those changed in a positive direction. We had all the objective measurements, but what we were looking at in the trial was we gave everybody an activity tracker, a little Garmin watch. We were measuring their stress levels and their sleep patterns and their steps and heart rate variability and all that stuff. What we found was because good nutrition helped them feel better and changed all their biochemistry, it changed their behavior.

People were subconsciously choosing a better diet. They were moving their bodies more. They were getting more minutes of REM sleep and deep sleep and all that stuff. It told us that if we can get people to feel better with good nutrition, they’re going to start behaving better and making better lifestyle choices. Let’s be honest. Everybody knows they’re supposed to eat better. Everybody knows they’re supposed to move their bodies more and yet we don’t because we feel crappy. We feel fatigued that we feel like we don’t have time and we feel stressed out. If we can intervene on that psychological level, people make better choices for the rest of their life. It was a revelation for us.

If people feel better with good nutrition, they will start behaving better and making better lifestyle choices.

I do want to focus on gut bacteria for a second because it’s something that is very popular and literature right now. This idea of gut-brain access. Many people don’t realize that there’s this feedback mechanism between what you eat and the gut neurons and then the brain neurons. When we’re talking about a healthy gut microbiome, what are you looking for?

I know that there are specific bacteria that are indicated for specific things. One of the things that I’m taking is a probiotic to increase my testosterone because I’m at that age where my testosterone is going to be dropping. There are a lot of studies on lactobacillus reuteri, which is a bacteria that supposedly increases testosterone and some people are taking it. What are you looking for? Tell me a little bit more about that.

When we’re measuring microbiomes in individuals or in groups of people in our clinical trials, we’re looking at lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and akkermansia. We’re looking at ratios between some of the bacteria. There’s a very popular measurement called the F/B Ratio, Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes Ratio that’s related to metabolism. Firmicutes are good at harvesting calories from your diet. Bacteroidetes are less good at that.

If you have too many Firmicutes, you’re more likely to gain weight. If you have too many or more Bacteroidetes, you’re less likely to gain weight. We can use that in some of the weight loss trials that we do. The thing with the microbiome though, is that it’s still early days. It’s changing how we think about mental wellness. It’s changing how we think about human health, but it’s relative to the individual.

People will ask me all the time, “What’s a good microbiome number?” There is no such thing. We don’t have that data right now. We can’t say like a cholesterol number. We can’t say you need to be under 200 or whatever the number’s going to be. We don’t have that for the microbiome now. We’ll test people and see where they are right now. We’ll do a nutrition intervention and we’ll see how it changes.

We can say, “Did your good bacteria go up? That’s a good thing. Did your bad bacteria go down? That’s a good thing. Does your akkermansia go up? That indicates better gut integrity, less leaky gut.” There are certain things we can tell about the microbiome, but then we coordinate or correlate the microbiome change with a biochemical change like cortisol or an inflammatory marker.

We’ll correlate that with a psychological marker like a depression index or a sleep quality index or something like that. That’s how that side of it goes. The question is how do you change that? If you look at probiotic supplements as you mentioned, what I try to educate people about is this idea of strain specificity. You have to have the right strain of bacteria to do the effect that you’re looking for.

Some strains, as you mentioned, will increase testosterone. Other strains will increase serotonin. Other strains will increase GABA. Other strains will lower cortisol. Unless you know the specific strain that you’re getting or you know the benefit that you’re trying to get, you can line up the strain with the benefit. Unfortunately, most products on the market right now don’t even tell you the strain. They’ll say, “Lactobacillus acidophilus.” That tells you almost nothing.



Do you take probiotics yourself?

I do. One that I take every day and one that I have used in some of the formulations that I’ve done is called lactobacillus rhamnosus R0011. That R0011 strain increases GABA, a relaxing neurotransmitter, and decreases cortisol, a stress hormone. It’s like it’s dialing down a negative signal cortisol and it’s dialing up a positive signal, GABA. That’s like an anti-stress bacterial strain. The reason I said that in its full name lactobacillus rhamnosus R0011 is that R0011 strain designation that lets us know it’s anti-stress.

There’s another strain called lactobacillus rhamnosus GG that’s good for traveler’s diarrhea. There’s another one called Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR1 that’s good for recurrent yeast infections in women. There’s another one called LR-32, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus 32 that’s good for regulating your gut motility so it can help with diarrhea. It all determines the strain.

I don’t know anything about that stuff. I feel like I have a little bit of an understanding, but even as a surgeon, it’s not something that we learn about necessarily in medical school. Tell me a little bit more. A lot of what we talked about was correlation. Let’s talk about causation. Explain to me the pathway that we know so far about how the bacteria that you are taking increases the amount of GABA and as much as we know right now.

As much as we know right now is that we can give specific strains of bacteria to increase serotonin, GABA, or dopamine in the gut. As a result of that, people feel better. Those data exist. We have that out there. What we don’t know yet, though, is what is the exact mechanism that’s going on here. We know increasing serotonin in the gut, that serotonin in the gut does not get into the brain. It can’t cross the blood-brain barrier.

Somehow the serotonin increase in the gut has to be sending a signal. Maybe it’s sending a signal across the vagus nerve, which is a hardwired connection from the gut to the brain. Maybe it’s sending a signal through the immune system. Seventy percent of your immune system is in your gut and your immune system can take the signals from your microbiome, reach up into your brain, and talk to the glial cells in your brain.

The immune system might be the pathway. It could be that the neurotransmitters in your gut are sometimes changing the inflammatory markers in your blood, your cytokines, and the cytokines can get across the blood-brain barrier. That piece of it is still being teased out. We know we have cause and effect, but the middle piece of it is still a little bit of a black box we’re trying to figure out. It’s promising because it gives us these tools that we didn’t have even years ago to help bring to bear on this problem by helping people feel their best mentally. If you feel better mentally, you’re going to perform better physically. You’re going to make those better lifestyle choices and that’s going to permeate all aspects of your life.

We do know that the more variety of bacteria that you have is an indicator of health.

That’s the one thing that all of us scientists who study the microbiome agree on. More diversity is a good thing.

That’s the thing. I want to know right now what are some high-level things that we can take away that everybody agrees on? I feel like sometimes thought leaders like yourself have a deep dive and a particular sector. I want to know, whether they’re performance interested or interested in getting their mood correct and stabilized, what are some general things that a person can do to make sure that they have a healthier life overall?

As much as I love to get into the weeds of this strain of bacteria and this structure of prebiotic fiber and this herbal extract and that thing, the biggest thing, the easiest thing that everybody should be doing is eating less processed food and eating more fruits and vegetables. That right there would go a long way. The reason’s simple. If you’re eating a lot of processed foods, you’re eating a lot of sugar, which is bad for a variety of reasons, but processed food is going to be low in fiber. If you are not getting enough fiber, you are starving your microbiome. Your microbiome, your good bacteria, want to eat fiber. That’s their only fuel source. If you’re on a low-fiber diet, you’re starving out your microbiome.

Eating less processed food and more fruits and vegetables, you will go a long way.

You have to eat more fiber. The easiest way to eat more fiber is not with a supplement. The easiest way to eat more fiber is to eat a diversity of fruits and vegetables. We have a challenge that we give to people that’s called the 30 Plant Challenge. We want them to eat 30 different kinds of plants within a seven-day period. We know that 30 is the magic number from a big project called the American Gut Project that looked at hundreds of thousands of microbiome samples. Mine was included in that sample set.

You can look at diversity. You can say, “Here’s the diversity of what five servings of fruits and vegetables do. Ten servings are more diverse. Fifteen servings are more diverse. It plateaus out right around 30. Thirty is better than 25, but 35 isn’t that much better than 30. We tell people, “Eat your red peppers, yellow peppers, your romaine lettuce, your green leaf lettuce, your blueberries, and your pomegranate, and get as many as you can. That’s going to give a diversity of bacteria in your gut. That’s hands down the best thing that people can do.

Do you have a consulting service if they want to get in contact with you? How does it work in regards to getting the benefits out of Amare?

Amare.com is the best place to find out about the kinds of products that we do. We use specific strains of probiotic bacteria. We use specific structures of prebiotic fibers. We use very well-validated herbal extracts. Mango leaf, lychee fruit, palm fruit, and things that have good clinical evidence that we put into our products. We do clinical trials on our finished formulations. You can see, “They put in these three good ingredients, but what happens when they mix them together? Do they cancel each other out? Do they have an amplified benefit? A synergistic benefit is the lingo in the supplement world. We have that stuff. Amare.com is a good resource for that.

On my research side, people can type in my name ShawnTalbott.com and go to my blog and they can see the research studies that we’re doing. Sometimes we’re looking at different strains of probiotics. We have a clinical going on. We’re looking at a specific strain of probiotic bacteria for weight loss. We’re also looking at a specific natural yeast extract for anti-allergy benefits. We run a lot of these public clinical trials where people, if they have those symptoms, can sign up and go through the informed consent documents and things like that. If people are interested to see what is the cutting edge of these national therapies, go to ShawnTalbott.com and you can find out.

I’m very excited for the next generation of wellness because I feel like there’s this idea of healthcare that’s very much a reactive situation where somebody is sick and we take care of them. All of this preventative stuff, all of this maximizing our wellness and health before we get to the hospital or before we go see our doctor is something that’s interesting to me personally. That’s going to be an interesting future right now, especially with sensor technology. All of us have an Apple watch or some sensor that is tracking so many different things, pairing that with things like supplements and our diet and stuff. That’s going to be an interesting future for us.

We’ll eventually get to the point where we can personalize all of this. There’s a little bit of that happening right now where you fill out a survey online and ask yourself some questions about your health. I wouldn’t say that that’s personalized nutrition. I would say it’s semi-personalized or semi-customized right now.

We’ll get to the point where we’ll be able to measure someone’s microbiome and make recommendations on that. We’ll look at their inflammatory markers and make recommendations on that. We’ll take a DNA sample and make recommendations on that. Someday this will all be mainstream stuff. You’ll go in for your annual checkup. They’ll measure your microbiome like they measure your blood pressure like they measure your cholesterol. That’ll someday be a new health marker.

Is there any place that’s doing that right now? If I’m interested in doing that, are you guys doing that?

We do it for our trials, but we don’t do it as a personal service. There are clinics around the country that are starting to do that, these bespoke clinics that aren’t covered by insurance. You pay out of pocket. A lot of the wellness spas, canyon ranches, and those sorts of places are starting to offer these kinds of services. If you can afford it, it’s good information. It’s not mainstream accessible at this point yet.

I know we’re both in the Boston area, so do you know any place around here that’s doing this stuff?

I don’t. They’re all West Coast places, to be honest with you. That stuff will eventually get here. Maybe it’s a service I should start adding here.

You should. I totally think that it would be a benefit. Every time I go to my physician, I’m interested in performance and longevity. Both things are very popular right now. I always want him to do the stuff that’s going to help me later on. Honestly, the majority of stuff that we know right now is such low hanging through like he’s testing me for my lipids. He’s making sure that I’m not smoking.

That’s something that I already know. I want to have a deep dive into myself and I’m like, “If you do this, then you will get that.” I haven’t found any place around here. Every person in this space, I always ask them about that. Who can I go to? A lot of people say Dr. Attia. He has a private consulting service, but I called them and it’s so difficult to get in because now he’s servicing all these celebrities and stuff.

Access is difficult. You mentioned something about longevity. That’s something I’m super interested in right now because a lot of the things that we’re doing at the level of the microbiome to help people with mental wellness issues are some of the very same things that other groups are doing to extend lifespan. There’s a cool study came out where they did a microbiome transplant on these old versus young mice. They take the microbiome from a young mouse and put it into an old mouse.

In every parameter you can imagine, the old mouse performed as a youngster. Its brain changed. Its immune system changed, and its inflammatory markers changed. Its behavior changed. I look at those microbiome signals and they’re the exact same things that we’re doing to help people feel better. It’s mental wellness. It gives me a lot of hope that we get somebody to feel better and happier and more energetic and hopefully, that’s doing something to their longevity as well. That’s a tough study to do in humans.



It’s a very difficult study to do in humans. I can’t wait until we tap into that because I feel like that’s something that’s low-hanging fruit. Unfortunately, because of the rigors of going through the academic research process, it’s very difficult to conduct studies that may have some ethical issue or something, which honestly is a good thing so that we don’t end up in bad situations. Sometimes it delays progress a little bit.

One of the things that I see all the time in regards to performance and longevity that’s coming up is these regenerative medicine clinics. I don’t know what the exact term is for it. It’s a physician that you go in to see and they basically do a whole bunch of labs and they put you on stuff. I feel like it’s so much more geared towards hormones. They’re so in vogue right now and that’s why I’m trying to increase my own hormones by increasing my testosterone, which is something that we know makes you feel better and it helps you perform better. I don’t think that there are a lot of people that are doing it from a nutrition basis other than generalized stuff.

The approach that we take at Amare, we have a testosterone booster. I hate to call it a testosterone booster, but I’ll say that so people know what we’re talking about. It’s a combination of three herbs. One is called Tongkat Ali, one’s called Cordyceps, and one is Rhodiola. I’ve used them with athletes for years and years. In athletes, it doesn’t boost their testosterone. It doesn’t take normal testosterone and make it any higher, but it can take low testosterone and bring it up to normal.

The way that it does that is that some of the ingredients in those herbs will help this binding hormone called sex hormone binding globulin that binds testosterone, making it unavailable in the body. It will help that release. You can get someone’s pre-testosterone to come back up to normal levels naturally before they have to resort to doing a patch or cream or an injection or something like that. That’s one approach. I’m going to look up this probiotic strain that you’re taking because that’s something I wasn’t aware of.

We’ll share more. I did want to make sure that I address the three questions that I ask all my guests. 1) I got to note, Dr. Shawn Talbott, what do you take in your own life to make it healthier?

I take a lot of supplements. I try to eat my 30 plants every week. I try to eat as few processed foods as possible. I still like to have my coffee. I still like to have a glass of wine. I’m what I would refer to as an 80/20 nutritionist. Eighty percent of the time, I’m doing pretty good and I’m on my plan and 20% of the time, I’m enjoying myself and cheating a little bit here and there. I take specific strains of probiotic bacteria to help with stress, depression, and anxiety. Even though I want to have the best, most comprehensive resilience possible so I can handle as much.

I take a lot of Amare products. I formulated the products. I know the ingredients in there. I take them. I recommend them to everybody else. One product is called MentaBiotics. I highly recommend that people look at it. It’s a whole gut-brain access system. The idea is that if you can get optimized what’s happening in the gut, it doesn’t stay in the gut. It permeates the whole rest of your body. Physical performance, mental performance, those are the kinds of things that I’m taking.

What’s happening in the gut won’t stay if you try to optimize it. It permeates the rest of your body, physical and mental performance.

I’ll have to check it out. I’ll have to go to your website and order something for myself and we’ll see each other again because we live close to each other. I’m sure that I can give you my recommendations after I take it. That’s number one. 2) What I wanted to ask you about is you seem like a pretty thick guy. What are you doing for exercise so that you remain as high performing as you can?

I’m an endurance nut. I do Ironman triathlons and run marathons and ultra-marathons and that stuff. I’m in my workout clothes right now. I went to the gym before we decided to talk. One thing I have to force myself to do is go lift weights. I know how good it is for me and yet I don’t do it as often as I need to.

For somebody that’s normal and isn’t as active, what would you suggest that they do to maximize their benefit?

In the programs that we do, I try to recommend that people do a combination of endurance work. Interval walking is the easiest thing for people to do, which basically means walking fast for a minute and walking easy for a minute. Walk fast for 2 minutes, and walk easy for 2 minutes. You keep alternating that for however much time you have. That’s going to give you the endurance piece of it.

You don’t have to go out and blow your brains out in terms of high-intensity training if you don’t want to, but then you also have to do strength training. It can be bodyweight stuff. It can be squats. It can be pushups. It can be what I call hinges where you’re bending over and picking something up off the floor. Those are all our normal motions that we’re supposed to be doing. If you can strengthen those, that’s going to be good for your overall functionality.

Lastly, I am always interested in where experts and thought leaders like yourself see us going as a species. Where do you see nutrition going in the next ten years?

My perspective as a nutritionist might be a little bit biased, but I think that nutrition is the most impactful intervention that we have access to because when you consume food, it becomes part of you. When you consume food, it changes your microbiome. It changes the structure of your brain, either positively or negatively.

We’re in a time in history where we’re learning enough about the impact of nutrition to get to the point of precision nutrition where we can say, “If you’re trending towards depression, we can change that trajectory. If you’re trending towards accelerated aging, we can change that trajectory.” Getting to the point where we can maybe prevent some of these problems from even happening in the first place by giving the right nutrients because it changes the biochemistry, structure, physiology, and psychology. It’s an exciting time.


FSP - DFY 11 Shawn Talbott | Future Of Nutrition


I’m actively looking for that in my own life. We’ll talk later and we’ll share some recommendations with each other about different things that we can help each other with as well as our readers. Thank you so much and I want to have you back on the show because I am incorporating some things into my own life and I’d love to try some of your products and give you some feedback. Obviously, we live so close to each other. Next time we got to do this in person.

We’ll do this in person, for sure. That’ll be great.

Nice to meet you. For our readers, thank you for joining us in the show where we’re talking about the future, so I’ll see you next time in the future. Have a good one.


Important Links 

About Dr. Shawn Talbott 

FSP - DFY 11 Shawn Talbott | Future Of Nutrition



Dr. Shawn Talbott is a PsychoNutritionist who integrates nutrition, biochemistry, and psychology to help people feel, look, and perform better. As a scientist (PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from Rutgers) and entrepreneur (EMP in Entrepreneurship from MIT), his recent projects include two academic textbooks, an award-winning documentary film, several best-selling books translated into multiple languages, and numerous top-selling nutraceuticals and functional foods.
Dr. Talbott serves as Chief Science Officer for Amare Global – The Mental Wellness Company, and runs the 3 Waves Wellness Center where he educates guests in “flourishing” and trains students as Certified Mental Wellness Coaches.
He is also an endurance nut – with dozens of Ironman and ultra-marathon finishes.


By: The Futurist Society