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EP143 The One About Fish Oil, Inflammation, And Overcoming Bad Genetics

Transcript Of Today's Episode

Martin Junior: Hello, I'm Doctor Martin Junior.

Martin Senior: And I'm Doctor Martin Senior.

Martin Junior: And this is The Doctor Is In Podcast and this is episode 143. Today we want to talk about a few studies that [00:00:30] have come out over the last few weeks that have caught our attention. We're going to kind of go all over the place today. We did this back on episode 141 and got a lot of feedback, people kind of liked the different studies we talked about, so we figured we'd do the same thing again today. And again, these are studies that over some very practical feedback that you can use right now in your life to help you out in different areas.

So let's talk about a couple of them first, and here's one that I found was interesting. We could talk about this a little bit. This study found that markers of insulin resistance, so [00:01:00] here's a few of them for example: High triglycerides is one. Low HDL and remind me to talk about that for one second after, I just want to read the rest of this study here. So high triglycerides, low HDL and obesity or other markers like that are present 30 years before the diagnosis of chronic kidney disease, which is incredible.

So imagine having a 30 year advance notice on a disease like chronic kidney disease, which is a major problem today, and it's only getting [00:01:30] worse because of diabetes and Type 2 diabetes. It's getting worse and worse. Hospitals across North America are building dialysis units, they're building all these kidney treatments centres because it is becoming a bigger problem. For a lot of people, diabetes, that's how it ends.

Martin Senior: Yeah.

Martin Junior: Kidney failure, right? It doesn't end well. So imagine having a 30 year warning that your kidneys are going to end poorly. That's what markers of insulin [00:02:00] resistance do. So if you have high triglycerides, you have low HDL or you're obese, there are some other markers there as well, but those are some of the bigger ones that people have if they have insulin resistance. You get 30 years advance notice. It's a lot of time to change things.

Martin Senior: Yeah. You can reverse it.

Martin Junior: You can reverse it and studies have shown, when it comes to Type 2 diabetes, an actual full reversal of diabetes in 12 weeks, when they did a low carbohydrate, [00:02:30] essentially ketogenic diet for 12 weeks. Which for some people, well, for a lot of people, that's not easy to do. Right? 12 weeks of going keto is very difficult, especially in today's culture because of all the food available that are just tasty, high reward foods. We just crave them. So it's not easy to do. But 12 weeks of low-carb reverses Type 2 diabetes for a large percentage [00:03:00] of the people that were in those studies.

Right, so it's like, 12 weeks, fix your Type 2 diabetes.

Martin Senior: Yeah.

Martin Junior: However, like I said, here's a study showing that you can get a 30 year advance notice on your kidneys failing.

Martin Senior: And let me say this, okay, just from practical experience and clinical experience, that any kidney disorder, almost anything that you can think of kidney: kidney stones, high protein in the urine, recurring kidney [00:03:30] infections, even a lot of times urinary tract infections, but when it comes to that area, and kidney stress, the number one cause is insulin. High circulating insulin. Folks, if you're listening, if you have any, any issue, you know friends that have issues with kidneys, and you're wondering why and you might think genetics or whatever, they might have some genetic predisposition [00:04:00] because of what they're genetics are, but I'm telling you, it's insulin.

And when I lower people's insulin, which is always our goal with our eating program at the Martin clinic, it's always the goal. For other people it may be the goal is weight loss and their goal is, "I want to be more energy," but my goal is always, because I know all of the above gets better, and that is you gotta lower insulin. 'Cause high-circulating insulin is [00:04:30] detrimental big time to the kidney. But isn't it amazing how resilient your kidneys are? Is that, obviously, if you have high triglycerides, you're eating ...

Triglycerides is simple. It's you're eating too many carbohydrates. It's as simple as that. You got elevated insulin, it elevates your triglycerides.

Martin Junior: Isn't it funny how salt was the patsy when it came to kidney issues. I mean, they just blamed salt for everything. Salt was blamed for high blood pressure, [00:05:00] salt was blamed for kidney issues and lower salt diet and you're going to be okay, and it hasn't helped anybody. Now they're starting to realize, no, actually insulin controls a lot of the water volume and you know, it's funny how things change. Right now, research is showing that you actually need salt and you actually need more than people thought they did and when you lowered salt too much, people didn't do well at all.

Right, it actually increased the risk for a lot of issues-

Martin Senior: And a lot of medications really plays in kidneys, right? It really messes them up. Because of [00:05:30] exactly what we talked about. This salt, this dysfunction, right? They're over diuretics and other things that are meant to, well, you know, temporarily lower your blood pressure or whatever, they have the opposite effect on your kidneys because they start getting your kidneys to play games, right?

Martin Junior: And you know, the funny thing with salt is that a lot of the salty foods that they would say were bad for you, they would blame it on the salt, without blaming it on the vegetable oils or the combination, which is the worst combination of fat [00:06:00] and carbs, right? There's these fatty, carb-y foods that had salt in them, a.k.a. like potato chips and stuff like that, and they blamed all the kidney and all the high blood pressure on the high salt.

You know, it's like when they used to blame the butter for what the bread did. They're blaming salt for what the carbs did as well, right? A lot of times. Because a lot of these foods that you put a lot of salt in, generally are high-carb, high fatty, bad combination vegetable type of fats. [00:06:30] But as I was saying earlier, and this is something that I just want to stress, 'cause I found this very interesting, 'cause a lot of people worry about cholesterol, because again, there's so much confusion when it comes to cholesterol out there.

But something interesting has come out, it's a massive database, it's called a Framingham Offspring Database and what they found is this, and this is fascinating. If your triglycerides are below 100 and if your HDL is above 40, it really does not matter what [00:07:00] your LDL cholesterol is in regards to cardiovascular risk. So if you have a good high HDL and your triglycerides [crosstalk 00:07:10] are low, then the cholesterol number doesn't impact you at all in terms of cardiovascular risk.

Again, they're blaming cholesterol when the problem is the combination really, which is high triglycerides, which is terrible. And we've talked about triglycerides a few episodes back, so you go back and listen to that as well. Anyway, so that's one study that we've found [00:07:30] this past little bit that we found interesting.

Here's another study. Well, let's talk about two quick ones on fish oil, 'cause again, we're big fans of fish oil. One study that 2.5 grams a day can lower inflammation in older adults, right? One of the things that ages us, 'cause studies have shown this, chronic inflammation accelerates aging. We age faster when we're inflamed. So if you want to keep your biological age low, we talk about [00:08:00] the difference between chronological age and biological age.

Somebody could be 50, but their cells, their telomeres, everything is like 45. Their biological age is nice and low. And then it could be the reverse. Somebody could be 40, but they're so inflamed and everything that their biological age is in their 60s, right? So if you want to lower inflammation, which is very practical for pain, first of all, very practical for joints, very practical for your skin, for your hair, but if you want to lower inflammation [00:08:30] and you're older, this study found 2.5 grams a day is effective at that.

So that's the first study. The second study goes along the lines of another big issue, as we age, is sarcopenia. As we age, muscle wasting is a massive problem. It will disable you. It is probably the number one cause of disability in older adults. They don't have enough muscle mass. Their quads, their hamstrings, triceps, [00:09:00] they can't get out of a chair, they fall a lot because of the muscles. You know, a lot of people blame it on their balance, but a big part of your balance, your proprioception-

Martin Senior: Is muscle.

Martin Junior: ... is muscle mass. You want better balance? Build muscle. You have a lack of muscle, you're going to have balance issues because the muscles can't correct ... I mean, think of what has to happen for you, for your brain to know where your limbs are in space without looking. It's like you could reach for a cup on a table and not even look at [00:09:30] the cup. And pick it up and your brain knows where your hand is. It knows what's going on. It has that ability for you to reach for that cup and not even look at it, but you know exactly where it is.

Well, every time you step, it's not like you're looking at your feet. Right? But your brain, it's called proprioception, it has the ability and when your foot hits the ground, your body corrects very quickly for any kind of uneven, or if anything happens where you miss a step, but your body corrects for that that all day. When you have poor balance, a lot of times it's because [00:10:00] the muscle mass in the kinematic chain, all the way from the ankle all the way up, are just wasting. So that's a big problem in people who fall.

Martin Senior: Yeah. Fall and break a hip and then they're checking out, and a lot of people, as they get older, a fracture, the fall, is the beginning of the end for them.

Martin Junior: Yeah, it doesn't end well after that. So this study found that five grams of fish oil can protect against what they call 'disuse atrophy'. And it does so by [00:10:30] increasing muscle protein synthesis, basically, it can help prevent muscle wasting. This study showed around five grams a day. Which, to be honest with you, I like the five grams more than the 2.5 gram.

Martin Senior: Yeah.

Martin Junior: I like that number more for a lot of people. They tend to do a lot better on five grams. Now, for some people, when they take a fish oil, and we like DHA, we have one that we really like we use in our clinic. But for some people, they've gotta take a digestive enzyme when they take fish oil [00:11:00] because it's an-

Martin Senior: Oil.

Martin Junior: It's an oil, you tend to do better when you take it with a meal, and some people, to digest it, they can spread their dosage out if you have to, but for some people, just take it with a digestive enzyme and we hear this a lot of times, where if somebody has a little bit of an issue with indigestion or bloating or whatever, any of the symptoms of low enzymes, they do well when they take it with a digestive enzyme. So there are ways you can get that in.

But regardless, five grams can help [00:11:30] protect against disuse atrophy, which if you're in a hospital, this is something that's interesting that really surgeons and a lot of the primary care physicians in a hospital should be looking at because, you know, somebody comes in for a surgery and they're a little older and they're not going to be moving around, you lose muscle fast. It's amazing how fast you can lose muscle volume and you can lose muscle.

So if somebody is coming off of surgery or something, it's something that maybe the doctors want to start looking at doing more, which is giving them enough fish oil to [00:12:00] kind of fight against that disuse atrophy that comes with that.

Martin Senior: Yeah.

Martin Junior: And think about when you injure yourself, coming off an injury. You know, you break a leg, you're not using it for a long time, taking five grams of fish oil not only helps with disuse atrophy, can also keep the inflammation down low. So it's kind of a double thing, which is why we really like how dosage of fish oil when somebody's injured. For multiple reasons, inflammation, all that kind of stuff.

Anyways, we're big, big fans of fish oil and here are two more studies that came out recently that kind [00:12:30] of just give you other reasons. Again, we can go through the research on the effect it has on your brain for dementia, Alzheimer's-

Martin Senior: Especially when you combine it with curcumin.

Martin Junior: Yeah. They're like a dynamic duo. They're like a superpower team. There is no question that when you combine those two things, it's just amazing for your brain, amazing for your joints. But again, something to consider. Are you getting enough fish oil, because the number one thing when it comes to fish oil that we see with people, either they're not taking it, or [00:13:00] two, when they are, they're taking 1 gram of fish oil, but when you actually look at the ingredients of the fish oil capsules they're taking, and if you're taking fish oil, go get your bottle, turn it around, look at the ingredients. It's one gram per capsule, usually, or 500 milligrams. Actually look at how much DHA and EPA are in there.

You'll be surprised. I'm willing to bet that most people that are listening, and if they look at it, they're not even getting 300 milligrams combined of DHA and EPA per capsule. There's not [00:13:30] a lot in them. We have a high DHA, which is a high DHA capsule, they get a ton of DHA per capsule. But that's the thing, you want to make sure you're getting enough, 'cause that's the two biggest problems that we see. They're either not taking it, or when they do, they're just not taking enough to get the therapeutic benefit that they need in order to see the result.

So these would be considered high dosages for people, even though people go a lot higher than this, but these studies looked at 2.5 grams, which a lot of studies just do one gram, and this other one was five grams, which [00:14:00] is again, that's typically not how they study it. So two studies on fish oil. Now, you had an interesting one on genetics that you wanted to talk about.

Martin Senior: Yeah, when I was saying, and this is very interesting, that 98% change, especially in the diet, so we all know what your genes are, right? You're made up of your DNA and the way you're built and so that people that come in and you know, you studied [00:14:30] a lot of genetics when you were in school in the '90s and it's something that we studied very little in the '70s, when I was in school.

So the '90s was the genetic age and still today it is because most pharmaceuticals are looking at genetics and able to change genetics and to override some genetics with medications, right? They're looking at cancer that way and whatever. But what they showed in this study that there is a 98% improvement [00:15:00] in your genes, it's almost like overriding bad genes, if you make lifestyle changes. So it's something that we've been saying at the Martin clinic for years.

That is: Listen, the Martians, you know we often tease ourselves 'cause we're Martins, but we come from another planet, we're Martians, but that's what my brother-in-law used to say about us, right? But you know us. We've got a lot of bad genetics, in terms of diabetes, in terms of-

Martin Junior: Yeah, a lot of cancer.

Martin Senior: A lot [00:15:30] of cancer in our family, right. And you know, listen, do I take that seriously? Of course I do. So when people come in and say, "Oh, my mother had breast cancer," and here's a woman very concerned about what her estrogen levels, and you know, rightly so, absolutely, very important. But I always tell them, "Listen, listen," and this study is confirming it, that lifestyle overrides, in 98% of the cases, bad genetics. So [00:16:00] if you've got diabetes in your family, it's written all over you, you're African American and you got certain deficiencies and you know, you look at the First Nations here in Canada, diabetes is coming out both their ears, East Indian population.

We used to deal with some colleagues that were Egyptian and lots of diabetes. Half of the population are diabetic over there, right? So there's genetic involved, but you know what? The good news of this study [00:16:30] is if you change lifestyle, especially diet; of course we love exercise, we call it the true Vitamin E, you know we're big on especially resistant weight exercises, we've just proven it to thousands of patients, but all I'm saying is isn't it an interesting dynamic, is if you look at lifestyle changes.

This is what I tell my patients every day. This is what we talk about and why are we so passionate?

Martin Junior: Well, that's actually exciting because you're [00:17:00] not tied to your genetics in a lot of ways, right? 'Cause a lot of guys have family history of men in their family dying of a heart attack in their 40s or 50s, and they think that they're doomed for that. However, we know that's not necessarily true now. They have a weakness in that area, so they would definitely want to make some big lifestyle changes, earlier the better, right?

Martin Senior: Yes.

Martin Junior: Earlier the better, but it is nice to know, 'cause again, [00:17:30] our genetics, our family tree genetics are ... I mean, we've got everything. We've got a lot of cancers, like you said, we got a lot of everything, so just based on genetics alone, it would not be good.

Martin Senior: We're bad insurance risks.

Martin Junior: Yeah. No kidding. Just family history, it's like, "Do you got time?" "You got time for family history?" "Yes, cancer." "What kind? What kind of cancer?" "Cancer." Up our family tree, we got it all. No question. But it's nice to know that dietary [00:18:00] changes-

Martin Senior: Especially.

Martin Junior: ... especially can have a major effect on that. So that's very encouraging for people to hear that, to know that they can have some control and actually a lot more than they realize, over even their genetics. Even their genetics, they can have a lot of control over that.

Now, let's just end this podcast off talking about actually some research that was done in our backyard here, in a sense. Here we're up recording this up in Sudbury, Ontario, the university in town here [00:18:30] looked at the population of raccoons, did you see that?

Martin Senior: Yeah, I tweeted about it today.

Martin Junior: And how they are getting fatter and sicker and diabetic 'cause they're eating our garbage and we're eating our garbage as well, right? But it goes to show that it's the food. It's so crazy to think about it. The raccoons are proving it's our food. Our food is killing-

Martin Senior: Yeah, 'cause raccoons always ate garbage.

Martin Junior: Always ate garbage.

Martin Senior: I mean, the last hundred years-

Martin Junior: Now they're getting sick.

Martin Senior: ... if they could get into your garbage, they were in [00:19:00] there.

Martin Junior: Now they're getting sick. Well, you know what's funny, in the backyard earlier this summer, we were all sitting in the backyard and this big, fat raccoon just found it's way into our backyard 'cause we left the door on the side, it just looked at us, we looked at it and then it took off. Then of course I went into my garage 'cause I had it open, and garbage everywhere. It got into our garbage.

But it's amazing that this study was done and it's actually caught some international attention, how raccoons are getting sick eating our garbage.

Martin Senior: They're obese.

Martin Junior: It is proof that [00:19:30] the problem is our food. It's our food. What drives me crazy is this, this irritates me. The same advice for diabetes eating is given today, everything we know about it, and the advice is giving people diabetes, but raccoons are getting sick eating our garbage, our leftovers. If there's every an indictment on the North American diet, it's the fact that the raccoons are getting sick eating our food.

Martin Senior: I think that's [00:20:00] a book, isn't it? That we should talk-

Martin Junior: Yeah, we could come up with some kind of catchy title with it. But it was interesting, 'cause that study was done-

Martin Senior: [crosstalk 00:20:07] I enjoyed that this morning.

Martin Junior: Yeah, it was a local study. It was local researchers that found that, and it's not surprising in any way at all, but anyways, raccoons are getting sick eating our food, so that just kind of neither here nor there, but it just kind of gives you a little bit of insight to how, if it's making raccoons sick, we know what it's doing to us, and so when cancer levels are rising, our cardiovascular diseases are rising, our Alzheimer's [00:20:30] disease is rising, our Type 2 diabetes is rising, we know why. It's food. It's food.

Fixing your food can override your genetics, as studies have shown, and again, awesome stuff.

Martin Senior: And you know, just let me rant for five seconds, okay, if you don't mind?

Martin Junior: No, go ahead.

Martin Senior: Because it bugs me that when we're talking about genetics, is that all the money that we raise, cardio, cancer, Alzheimer's, [00:21:00] and diabetes, what are they doing? They're looking for a drug.

Martin Junior: Yeah, it's all drug research money.

Martin Senior: Right. Drug research money and the answer is in lifestyle/food. That's where the answer is. That's not where the money's going, but that's where the answer is, and you know what, folks? You heard it. We've been saying it for years, and we're consistently telling you that you can't control everything in life, you just can't, but what you can control is what [00:21:30] you put in your mouth every day, what you eat, and don't be like the raccoons that are, all they're thinking of is garbage.

If they knew what they were eating was making sick, I don't know if they would change or not, but you can change and so this is why we do the podcast, right?

Martin Junior: So we want to thank you for listening to this episode today. If you have any questions, you can email us at You can also go to our website and you know, we have chat on there, you have a bunch of different ways to get a hold of us, you can also become newsletter subscriber [00:22:00] where we talk about a lot of these things in our newsletters. You can do that at

We also have a private Facebook group where if you come to our website, you can request to join and it's great community. We have staff that kind of go in there, pull some really interesting stuff and we answer a lot of questions in there. So that's a great thing. Every Thursday morning you do a Facebook Live, so that's a great way again, to interact with you. If you have any questions, jump on there, ask him. You'll answer them. You may answer them upside or sideways for a bit, but that's all right.

Again, there's a lot of ways you get a hold of us. But again, [00:22:30] we want to thank you for listening and have a great day.