Strengthen The Body
Recovery, Relaxation, & Sleep Are All High-Energy States
Energy, Circadian Rhythm, & Nutrition
We often don’t realize just how much we can do to strengthen the body via light, sleep, nutrition, gut health, and exposure to nature.
We improve the energy levels in the body by receiving lots of daily infrared light, as well as frequent UV light, and grounding as much as possible. This can be incredibly powerful when the body is struggling to extract energy from food.
The circadian rhythm is the primary regulator of all vital functions, and without it, health recovery is extremely limited. When following proper circadian principles, the body’s strength can steadily climb — even in the worst of situations.
Nutrients are required for immunity and turning food into energy. However, two common denominators are true in most chronic illnesses:
- Nutrients do not reach cells properly
- Nutrients are used too-rapidly fighting infection and toxicity
Poor gut health is a primary player in these two problems.
Combatting this wisely can make a huge difference in the speed of your improvement, and in how you feel along the way.
High Energy State
Essential daily habits.
The energy available via light, water, and electromagnetism is remarkable.
Infrared Is Restorative, Yet Entirely Missing In Modern Life
Infrared light is invisible and makes up around half of sunlight. It is mostly felt as heat. Red light is visible, and makes up around 15% of sunlight.
Between the two, about 65% of sunlight (at noon) is restorative red and infrared.
We need large amounts of red & infrared to regulate our thyroid, digestion, immunity, circadian rhythm, enzyme activity, and more.
Modern light technologies remove infrared light from emissions to improve energy efficiency. Seeing that most people are indoors most of the day, modern humans receive very little of these restorative frequencies from our environment.
By contrast, throughout history, it’s nearly certain that humans received large amounts of infrared and red throughout the day and night — from sunlight and fire.
Getting daily infrared & red light is a critical step for recovery from chronic illness. Because our environments do not provide these spectrums of light, we must provide them ourselves.
Fortunately, supplementing infrared and red light isn’t too difficult.
Best Sources Of Infrared & Red
Over 50% of sunlight is invisible infrared light. In the morning, the ratio is even higher (because blue and UV light are reduced by particles in the atmosphere).
2) Infrared Heat Lamps
When sunlight isn’t available, for any reason, heat lamps have been my go-to source of light for many, many years.
Heat lamps are about $3-8/ea at local stores or Amazon.
3) The Sauna
Traditional saunas are the gold standard. Modern “Far-Infrared” saunas are inferior, because most do not emit the best, most healing frequencies of infrared.
4) LED Red Light Products
There are lots of fancy & expensive LEDs to provide infrared (& healing red) light. I do not recommend you invest in these expensive items unless you have money to burn. Narrow wavelengths are not optimal — and LEDs tend to flicker, which could be disruptive to cellular/brain metabolism.
Anecdotes About Red LED Products
Multiple clients have used heat lamps for months — and then bought a very expensive, high-quality red LED light product. The red LED product? Returned a few weeks later.
Heat lamps are superior.
Sweating Is Restorative (Infrared Is Heat)
If the body is sweating, chances are it’s being exposed to heavy infrared light — via environmental heat or heat released from tissues.
When infrared light (heat) is coursing through the veins, good things happen: metabolically, nutritionally, and for immunity.
Sweating itself has all sorts of benefits to health, too.
It’s a great idea to get warm enough to sweat every single day — especially when trying to recover from illness. Be sure to replace minerals (especially sodium and potassium) after you sweat.
The body needs exogenous (environmental) heat every single day. Even healthy people need this.
Infrared light’s impact on the body is similar to thyroid hormones, boosting metabolism and energy levels (as well as detoxification).
In fact, thyroid specialist Ray Peat Ph.D. has mentioned needing to take 75% less thyroid hormone in summer due to the presence of more environment infrared light (heat).
The water inside cells is capable of trapping infrared light and using it directly as energy — the same sort of energy the body extracts from food (electrons) and turns into heat (infrared light).
Whether via sunshine, heat lamps, or the sauna, get significant infrared light on the body — enough to break a sweat — daily. There may be no better foundation for health recovery.
UV Light Is Beneficial?
UV light is extremely healthy in moderate doses.
Struggling with immune problems? UV light boosts immunity and sterilizes pathogens on the skin, and — to some extent — the bloodstream.
Obviously, UV light is the only natural source of proper Vitamin D levels (there isn’t very much vitamin D in food).
There are loads of benefits to UV light that go far beyond Vitamin D.
UV light spurs hormone production and the digestive process, while balancing brain chemicals. UV even helps the circadian rhythm.
In fact, UV light in winter directly improves the gut microbiome — separate and apart from the effect of Vitamin D.
Via the photoelectric effect, it’s also plausible that UV light frequencies help the body build up electrical (negative) charge.
Vitamin D Is Made By UVB Light
Vitamin D is critical to nearly every aspect of health.
If your Vitamin D levels are low, you are sacrificing your health unnecessarily.
When you go outside, take a peak at your weather app on your smartphone or computer.
- Look at the UV Index
- Above 5 provides Vitamin D quite well
- Below 5, does not make Vitamin D
UV In A Winter Climate
Get UV Light from a “mid-level” tanning bed.
This will have a better balance of UVA/UVB light. UVB light without sufficient UVA can cause Vitamin D to rise too high.
START SLOW: 3-5 minute sessions are advisable if you’re unaccustomed to UV light exposure. 7-8 minutes maximum. Be wise.
The Best Home UV Product
The Sperti is the best UV product available.
The FIJI is the best model Sperti makes because it contains a better balance of UVA to UVB — but it’s still much less UVA than sunlight.
Extra UVA needs to be supplemented when using this lamp.
Fresh Air, Real Light
Nature is a respite from the plague of sick buildings.
Fresh air, natural light, grounding, and negative ions in the air all cleanse and energize the mind and body — facilitating better sleep later that night, and better digestion during the day.
An hour per day in natural spaces can do wonders for healing. Two to four hours/day outdoors is even better.
Grounding Is Real
Grounding on the earth is not essential, and likely is not a foundational aspect of recovery for most.
However, it can certainly augment your recovery. Wherever your health is now, it will be better the more you ground.
Typically, grounding is performed outside.
The term refers to “receiving electrons” from the earth due to contact with the earth’s constant (very weak) electrical current. Anytime skin touches the ground, concrete, or grass, a very small amount of electrons jump from the earth to your body. These electrons are essentially free energy.
However, grounding on “land” is not the best way to receive electrons — as we’ll see.
If this all sounds strange, check this out.
Oxidative metabolism is how we extract energy from food.
Oxidation means “taking an electron.”
Yes, we use electrons — electricity — from our food for energy).
The body does not discriminate as to the source of its electrons.
The more skin that touches the “ground,” the better.
The best way to ground? In water.
Getting all of your skin in a body of water means you’re maximizing the electrical supply to your body.
Your skin will take the electrons if they’re available. Getting in water (with its high dielectric constant) with lots of surface area (skin) exposed is by far the best way to ground.
In my experience, twenty minutes of grounding in a pool is the equivalent of hours spent standing on grass, barefoot. Some people say grounding in a concrete pool is better than a vinyl pool. Natural bodies of water are certainly the best. The ocean is certainly ideal. (Try it — you’ll notice how good you feel!).
That said, standing on grass has plenty of non-grounding benefits too: Fresh air, sunlight, relaxing natural environment, and stimulating the bottoms of the feet.
Take A “Both-And” Approach
A “both-and” mindset is essential to recover lost health. Looking for “that one fix” is almost never the right approach.
Therefore, ground as much as you can — on land and especially in water. The best benefits, though, will come from grounding wisely and in conjunction with other techniques.
High Energy State
Light Cycles — Meal Timing — Movement — Your Bedroom
Possibly The Most Important Step For Recovery
Going to bed late and waking up late will severely limit the speed and scope of your recovery.
There may be nothing more important — in your entire health journey — than getting your circadian rhythm on track.
Don’t Wait To Follow Proper Sleep Hygiene
When the circadian rhythm is out of balance, the entire body is out of balance.
Digestion will suffer. Caloric needs will rise. Inflammation will rise. Pathogenic load will rise. Hormonal balance will deteriorate. Gut microbiome is affected.
Poor sleep — alone — takes the average NBA player’s testosterone levels from the 88th percentile (preseason) to the 36th percentile (5 months later) — increasing the risk of injury and harming health. Poor sleep can certainly harm your health, as well.
There are few things worse for recovery than staying up late and sleeping in — even for an NBA player. If you’re recovering from illness, it’s all the more important.
On the other hand, improving your sleep is powerful enough to be considered a “performance-enhancing drug.”
You can take advantage of fixing your circadian rhythm — at any point on your health journey — by fixing your sleep habits. Don’t delay.
The light that hits the eyes — and to some extent, the skin — directly regulates the melatonin levels in your brain.
Melatonin should rise at night to induce sleep, and fall in the morning to allow alertness.
Low Calories? Bad.
Most folks with chronic illness don’t eat enough calories to lower stress hormones and enable the body to sleep.
This is often due to poor digestion (big meals are poorly tolerated) and restrictive diets (diverse foods are poorly tolerated). This is made worse by doctors and health gurus advocating extreme diets that cause people to become afraid of various foods.
Many restrictive diets harm thyroid function — and sometimes make sleep very, very difficult. This effect can take months or even years to take root.
Hormones and brain function depend on glucose — which is derived from carbohydrates.
In poor gut health, carbohydrates are often poorly tolerated. Ultimately gut health needs to improve to allow carbohydrates to be tolerated again.
A 1:1 carb-to-protein ratio is a bare minimum carbohydrate intake in most situations to produce consistent sleep. A 2:1 (c:p) ratio is more optimal for most.
When you eat is just as important than what you eat — for weight loss, for gut health, for immunity, for blood sugar control and for recovery from chronic illness.
There’s something extremely relevant and restorative about eating three meals per day. When you eat them, matters, too:
- Breakfast — 7:00 am
- Lunch — 11:45 am
- Dinner — 6:00 pm
These times do not need to be perfect, but there’s ample science and a wealth of anecdotal success stories from eating this way.
I spent almost a decade not worrying about my meal timing. If I’d known its importance sooner, I would have recovered much faster.
An optimal bedtime is around 9:30 for adults.
Ideally, we rise with the sun, seeking bright morning light, eat, and move early to restore the circadian rhythm.
Movement is a strong signal to the brain that “It is daytime!” Therefore, movement synchronizes the circadian rhythm.
You’ve got to move daily — at least a little bit — if you want to ensure a deeper sleep.
Move in a way that suits you, and that you enjoy, without putting too much stress on the body.
Modify Your Bedroom
Your sleeping quarters need to be cool and extremely dark for best sleep.
Do not underestimate how important it is that your room be very dark. The more you want to improve your health, the more important it is to ensure that light is not affecting your melatonin levels at night.
Do not sleep with technology nearby: EMF seems to be very disruptive to sleep, especially when the body is trying to heal.
If you’ve got mold exposure in your home, it can destroy sleep all by itself. Mold problems mustn’t be ignored.
Gut Health — Nutrient Balance
Unfortunately, modern food does not provide enough nutrition to stay optimally healthy — or to recover optimal health when we’ve long been ill.
The chronically sick will need nutrients even more desperately than healthy people, because they are already depleted.
In this situation, all nutrients are typically depleted, making folks incredibly sensitive to nutritional balance.
Thus, depleted nutrients must rise slowly — together. Supplementing individual nutrients can be risky, and if needed, must be done carefully and wisely. It helps to take most individual nutrients only once. or twice per week, and in conjunction with a solid, balanced nutritional foundation.
The kicker here? Even the purest, cleanest diet will not be properly absorbed when gut health is compromised. Therefore, gut health — and the health of the microbiome — must improve to resolve nutritional deficiency and imbalance in the long run.
Finally, many “pure” or “clean” diets avoid certain foods that are necessary for health.
Examples of moving away from “pure” diets include:
A Basic Foundation
First, we need to establish a basic nutrient supplement routine that will provide:
- low doses of nutrients
- in balanced quantities
- using quality ingredients.
Read more to develop your basic nutrient regimen.
The More Central Nutrients
Then, we need to have an awareness of the main, important nutrients.
Which Nutrients Matter Most?
Here are important nutrients to think about:
Sodium — Potassium Balance
Sodium and potassium balance each other.
You can cause harm by going too far in supplementing either. The balance is what’s necessary.
Many folks with hypothyroidism need extra salt. The body wastes salt in hypothyroidism.
It’s not unwise to salt your food to taste.
Most folks need potassium — especially those without hypothyroidism.. Fruit, vegetables, coconut water, and a potassium supplement are essential to provide necessary potassium.
Calcium — Magnesium Balance
Calcium and magnesium oppose each other, just like sodium/potassium.
Most folks need both of these. Magnesium is hardly present in food. Calcium is somewhat scarce outside of dairy and dairy alternatives (which are. fortified with subpar forms of calcium). Magnesium is virtually absent from all foods and requires supplementation.
Calcium and magnesium will both reduce sodium levels for folks in hypothyroidism. These folks should monitor this and be ready to take in more sodium.
If you don’t sunbathe or supplement Vitamin D, your levels are likely low.
Vitamin D supplementation is inferior to sunlight and can cause hypervitaminosis — too much Vitamin D, which stores in fat cells for a long time.
Sunlight has many benefits outside of Vitamin D.
Thus, get your Vitamin D from light — either summer sunshine or a wise tanning regimen: (weekly 5-6 minute sessions in a medium-level bed).
In poor gut health, B-vitamins are neither absorbed nor produced by friendly bacteria.
It is imperative that low doses of a B-complex be taken to replace lost nutrients.
In addition, many folks respond well to infrequent single doses of B1, B2, and B6.
Some respond well to B-3 (niacinamide), but only if hypoglycemia is not an issue.
Find a low-dose multivitamin that can help you get safe amounts of high-quality, methylated B-vitamins each day.
Zinc — Copper Balance
Zinc and Copper oppose each other, just like sodium/potassium.
It doesn’t take as much focus on zinc and copper to balance these. Taking each a few times a week is usually enough.
The best Zinc product is this one: https://amzn.to/2M28PrZ
In my opinion, there’s really only one good form of copper to take, and that’s in the form of chlorophyll.
Chlorophyll has many amazing benefits and safely binds toxins without harming the gut — but its best function is as a source of bioavailable copper.
Copper supplement (chlorophyll):
Take these nutrients separately — they compete for absorption.
Iodine — Selenium Balance
Iodine and Selenium oppose each other, just like sodium/potassium.
Some folks are fond of megadosing iodine, but I don’t great for most people. Too much can swiftly cause thyroid problems — much like iodine deficiency can.
I see this happen every week with clients — iodine megadosing causing long-term problems.
Therefore, your body needs an amount of iodine it can handle and utilize.
Both iodine and selenium are essential for immunity. Selenium is essential for glutathione production, which is needed for detoxification.
Kelp is the simplest source of iodine, and works well for many people. https://amzn.to/2LW75k3
Selenomethionine is the best source of selenium.
It’s also important to take a good Vitamin C supplement.
400mg, every other day (or so), is a nice low-dose for those with severe intolerances. You can work up slowly, but don’t go too high — 2g per day is a safer upper dose.
Megadosing vitamins is always risky — each nutrient interacts with many others.
The body cannot resist infection and other dangerous or debilitating diseases when our micronutrient levels are low. To fight off pathogens and restore metabolism, nutrients will be required. Nutrient deficiency is not a sustainable situation.
Balanced, proper doses of nutrients are needed to help you sleep, digest food, build immunity, and have more mental clarity as you recover.
Is Your Gut Holding You Back?
It may not matter how well you balance your nutrients — if you aren’t absorbing them well.
You’ve got to improve your gut so you can
To heal the gut, create a protocol for yourself incorporating multiple “killing supplements” taken daily, with repopulating supplements — prebiotics safely feed probiotics.
Some prebiotics also behave as “binders” — binding toxins inside the gut so they can be safely transported out of the body (pectins do this).
The safest prebiotics are apple pectin, modified citrus pectin, and FOS.
Ultimately, many people need simple, digestible carbs (like honey, fruit, or sourdough bread) for the gut (and thyroid) to heal, making carb avoidance counter-productive — although there are exceptions to this rule.
READ MORE: The Gut Section
Undereating is a sign of poor gut health and hypothyroidism.
Ultimately, sufficient calories are required to provide enough energy to the body to recover. To properly digest normal quantities of food, gut health often needs to improve.
Therefore, healing the gut and recovering from undereating tend to go hand-in-hand.
Further, don’t let a desire to “lose weight” or “be skinny” interfere with getting sufficient calories and diverse foods to support your body, your sleep, your thyroid, and your gut health.
The best path to looking your best is to be as healthy as possible.
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