What Should You Do To Protect Yourself?

Dr. Shawn Talbott (Ph.D., CNS, LDN, FACSM, FACN, FAIS) has gone from triathlon struggler to gut-brain guru! With a Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry, he's on a mission to boost everyday human performance through the power of natural solutions and the gut-brain axis.

My 13th book, Best Future You, is out!

Over the next several weeks, I’ll be posting excerpts from the book and blogging frequently about the main concept in the book – which is the idea of harnessing your body’s internal cellular biochemistry to achieve true balance in body, mind, and spirit – and in doing so, help you to become your “Best Future You” in terms of how you look, how you feel, and how you perform on every level.

Chapter 3 – Antioxidants are Killing You – by Making Cellular Stress Worse

What Should You Do To Protect Yourself?

Considering the latest studies (and the thousands of studies that have come before them), I still recommend the following when it comes to daily supplementation:

1. Eat Plenty of Veggies and Fruits: Focus your efforts on consuming at least 5-10 servings of brightly colored fruits and vegetables every day. The brighter the better, because brightness indicates a higher (and still safe) concentration of protective phytonutrients.

2. Make, Don’t Take, Your Antioxidants: Forget about “taking” antioxidants (from high-dose “multi” supplements) and start “making” your own antioxidants (by naturally activating the CDR pathways). Effective ways to naturally activate the CDR pathways include:

  • Exercise, which “turns on” certain antioxidant systems
  • Intermittent fasting also turns on CDR and survival genes
  • Many foods have a general activation effect on CDR (blueberries, tea, coffee, broccoli, cabbage, wasabi, Brussels sprouts, onions)
  • Focus on spices and herbals as supplements to specifically induce CDR (green tea, turmeric, quercetin, pine bark)

3. Use Other Supplements: Keep taking certain other (non-antioxidant) daily supplements depending on your specific needs, for example:

  • Vitamin D (up to 5,000IU/day of vitamin D3)
  • Omega-3 fatty acids (1,000mg of EPA & DHA from properly purified and concentrated fish oil)
  • Calcium (up to 500mg from supplements)
  • Magnesium (up to 250mg from supplements)
  • Probiotics (beneficial bacteria to maintain gastrointestinal and immune function)
  • Consider further supplementation based on individual lifestyle goals. For example, if you’re an athlete, you may want a supplement to help you recover better/faster from your workouts or if you’re a busy mom, you might want a supplement to help with energy or stress levels – or if you’re trying to lose weight, you might want a supplement to help control appetite and burn fat.

4. No More “Mega”: It bears repeating because it’s so important: stay away from mega-doses of ANY supplement, but especially avoid mega-doses of any antioxidant vitamin or mineral because we already have very good scientific evidence that pharmacological levels of such nutrients can cause more harm than help in the human body.

Thanks for reading – tune in for the next installment for some Final Thoughts from Chapter 3.

Shawn M Talbott, PhD, CNS, LDN, FACSM, FAIS, FACN
Nutritional Biochemist and Author
801-915-1170 (mobile)


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The Secret of Vigor – How to Overcome Burnout, Restore Biochemical Balance, and Reclaim Your Natural Energy
Killer at Large – Why Obesity is America’s Greatest Threat – an award-winning documentary film exploring the causes and solutions underlying the American obesity epidemic
The Cortisol Connection – Why Stress Makes You Fat and Ruins Your Health (Hunter House)
The Cortisol Connection Diet – The Breakthrough Program to Control Stress and Lose Weight (Hunter House)
Cortisol Control and the Beauty Connection – The All-Natural Inside-Out Approach to Reversing Wrinkles, Preventing Acne, And Improving Skin Tone (Hunter House)
Natural Solutions for Pain-Free Living – Lasting Relief for Flexible Joints, Strong Bones and Ache-Free Muscles (Chronicle Publishers – Currant Books)
The Immune Miracle – The All-Natural Approach for Better Health, Increased Energy and Improved Mood (GLH Nutrition, 2012)
A Guide to Understanding Dietary Supplements – an Outstanding Academic Text of 2004 (Haworth Press)
About the Author

Exercise physiologist (MS, UMass Amherst) and Nutritional Biochemist (PhD, Rutgers) who studies how lifestyle influences our biochemistry, psychology and behavior - which kind of makes me a "Psycho-Nutritionist"?!?!

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