I had the great pleasure over the past couple of days to be part of some fun celebrations in Istanbul Turkey.
I was here to celebrate the “one-year anniversary” of the merging of Amare and Kyani – bringing together the best natural products for mental wellness (Amare) and physical health (Kyani).
We held an entire “media day” where we talked to dozens of journalists, reporters, influencers, and celebrities – including an appearance on Turkey’s leading television channel (Kanal D) and the popular talk show Konustukca (“as we talk”).
I learned a couple of words in Turkish (Merhaba – hello; and Te?ekkürler – thank you) – and got the chance to indulge in some amazing food! ?
The show will air in a couple of days (on Saturday) – and here is a transcript of what we talked about…
The speaker will introduce you as; World Famous Psychonutrition Expert, Chief Scientific Officer of an American-based food supplement company that pioneered the Mental Wellness Movement in the World, has improved many lives around the world with his clinical studies in the field of microbiota, the brain-gut axis used to help people feel better through mental integrity and psychological vigor. Dr.Shawn Talbott, the scientist who continues to improve and heal, will be the guest of our program today and welcome you.
1-HELLO DR.SHAWN, CAN YOU PLS BRIEFLY TELL ABOUT YOURSELF? WHAT IS THE REASON Of BEING IN TURKEY?
As a scientist, I am trained in Nutritional Biochemistry (PhD) and Exercise Physiology (MS) – so I study how nutrition and physical activity can impact the biochemistry and physiology of the body (things like stress hormones, neurotransmitters, and inflammatory markers) – and for more than 20 years, I’ve also been studying how those biochemical and physiological changes influence our mental wellness (mood, focus, energy, stress).
I’ve written 14 books that have been translated in more than a dozen languages, about the relationship between food and mood – and how we can use specific nutrients to improve mental wellness and physical health.
I am in Turkey to celebrate a very important anniversary. About 6 years ago, I helped to start the world’s first “mental wellness company” focused on helping people feel their best – and about one year ago (September 2022), we partnered with another company focused on physical health – to create a global company with a broad portfolio of natural products.
So, this is our one-year anniversary of being able to help people in more than 50 countries around the world to naturally improve their health mentally and physically with optimal nutrition such as vitamins/minerals, omega-3s, protein, probiotics, prebiotics, and a full range of herbals and phytonutrients.
To celebrate the anniversary of this strategic partnership, I was just in the Philippines – and now we’re excited to be in Turkey. Yesterday, we had a big event with our successful business partners, press, celebrities and business people. I’m so excited to be able to meet with you, Özlem, and your audience today.
2- YOU’VE BEEN WORKING ON MENTAL WELLNESS FOR A GOOD LIFE. HOW DID THE STORY OF THESE WORKS START? CAN YOU EXPLAIN? CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR WORK IN THIS FIELD?
Early in my career, I was a “sports nutritionist” focused on helping elite athletes optimize their mental and physical performance. I worked with professional athletes in NBA basketball, MLS Soccer, and professional triathlon – as well as the United States Track & Field Association, US Ski Team, and US Olympic Training Centers.
Then, about 20 years ago, my younger brother died of a drug overdose – and it got me to think about the importance of mental wellness – not just for elite athletes – but for everyone to feel their best and get the most out of their lives. I thought that if we could take the latest science around human performance – and apply it to a mainstream audience, we could help anyone to reduce stress, improve mood, and elevate every aspect of their mental wellness and physical health.
3- HOW DOES YOUR ACTIVITY IN THE FIELD OF PHYSICAL BENEFIT AND MENTAL WELLNESS MAKE YOU FEEL? WHAT ARE THE MUST-HAVES FOR YOU WHEN WORKING IN THIS FIELD?
As a scientist, I love to do the research to find a new approach to helping people feel their best – and as an athlete myself, I love to see that research make a difference in someone’s ability to perform at their highest level. But, perhaps the best part of the work that I do, is getting to hear the stories from thousands of people around the world – about how our natural approaches are helping them and their entire families to be the best versions of themselves. Better at school, better at work, better in their relationships – it is really amazing.
4-WHY IS MENTAL WELLNESS IMPORTANT FOR THE DYNAMICS OF OUR LIVES? WHAT IS MENTAL WELLNESS?
Mental Wellness is the positive and resilient psychological state achieved when physical, mental and emotional well-being is optimized across mind, body, mood, and connections.
It encompasses what I call the “5 pillars” that include:
Emotional – cultivating healthy coping mechanisms to navigate life’s ups and downs in a resilient way.
Physical – taking care of your body through regular exercise, proper nutrition & supplementation, sufficient sleep, and other self-care practices.
Community – building and maintaining a supportive network of relationships and connecting with others.
Purpose – having a sense of direction and meaning in life.
Financial – managing financial stress, and having a stable financial situation that supports you and your family’s well-being.
5-WHAT IS THE ROLE OF NATURAL INGREDIENTS, SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH, CLINICAL STUDIES AND TECHNOLOGY IN YOUR STUDIES IN THE FIELD OF PHYSICAL AND MENTAL WELLNESS?
For thousands of years, cultures around the world have used natural ingredients such as traditional foods and herbals medicines to improve health and well-being. We have more than 5,000 years of Ayurvedic (Indian) traditional medicine, more than 3,000 years of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), and thousands of years of Traditional Arabic & Islamic Medicine (TAIM) – but it is only in the last few decades that we have been able to “prove” many of these approaches scientifically.
It is a very exciting time, where we can use modern scientific techniques to analyze the chemistry of traditional plants (to determine the bioactive components that give certain plants their health benefits) – and then use clinical trials to show that the right combination of natural ingredients can help us thrive in a modern world – by reducing stress or inflammation – or supporting immune health or gut health.
6 YOU MENTION THE IMPORTANCE OF THE GUT-BRAIN AXIS IN YOUR WORKS IN THE FIELD OF PHYSICAL AND MENTAL WELLNESS? WHAT IS THIS GUT-BRAIN AXIS?
Perhaps the most exciting development in science right now is our growing understanding of the microbiome (the collection of trillions of bacteria in our gut) and how the gut communicates with the brain – what is known as the “Gut-Brain-Axis”
The latest science is showing us that the gut microbiome determines a very large part of our overall mental wellness and physical health. For example, the majority of our neurotransmitters are produced in the gut (what we now call the “second brain”) – so 90% of our serotonin for happiness and 70% of our dopamine for motivation – and made in the gut and can determine how we feel and perform. Our microbiome also controls a great deal of our immune system function and our level of inflammation in the body.
So – by nourishing our microbiome – and maintaining a healthy gut and clear communication across the Gut-Brain-Axis, we can improve both our mental wellness and physical performance in a variety of ways. This is the way that our company is really different in helping people achieve their best in ways that have never been done before.
7-WHAT DOES MICROBIOTIA “WHICH WE FREQUENTLY HEAR CURRENTLY” MEAN? WHAT IS ITS CONTRIBUTION TO THE HUMAN BODY?
The microbiota – or “microbiome” – refers to the bacteria that naturally live in our gut (and on our skin). Many of us think of bacteria as “bad” because some types can make us sick – but there are actually many more “good” bacteria that help us maintain our health. The bacteria in our gut actually outnumber our human cells in our body – so we are actually more bacteria than we are human! This means that the best way to make a healthy human is to optimize the health of our body cells and the health of our bacterial cells – and our company is the first to bring both of these approaches under the same umbrella.
8-IS NUTRITION ENOUGH FOR A GOOD LIFE? OR IS IT IMPORTANT TO SUPPORT BOD WITH OUTSIDE FOOD SUPPLEMENTS?
There is a lot that we can do for our health simply by reducing our intake of processed foods and increasing our intake of less-processed whole foods (such as more fruits and vegetables) – but we can also optimize our nutrient intakes by supplementing our diets – and especially with nutrients that we often fail to get enough of in our diets, such as vitamins/minerals, omega-3s, proteins, probiotics, prebiotics, and phytonutrients.
We know that for most people living in our modern world, we simply don’t get the optimal amount of nutrients to support peak mental wellness and physical health, so proper supplementation can be an effective way to close that nutrient gap.
9-WHICH FOOD SUPPLEMENTS SHOULD WE TAKE IN OUR LIVES?
It really depends on your specific goals – but for most people, the biggest nutrition “gaps” that they can fill with proper supplementation would be fiber, omega-3’s, protein, and vitamins/minerals – and then we can help people optimize their Gut-Brain-Axis with specific strains of probiotics and prebiotics to boost mood, reduce stress, and improve resilience.
10- WE KNOW THAT YOU ALSO HAVE STUDIES IN THE FIELD OF WEIGHT CONTROL IN YOUR COMPANY. IN WHICH POSITION SHOULD WE PUT OUR MENTAL WELLNESS FOR WEIGHT CONTROL AND A FIT BODY? WHAT SHOULD WE DO FOR THIS?
It’s very interesting that the microbiome and Gut-Brain-Axis regulate our mental wellness through the production and transmission of neurotransmitters – and regulate our immune system and inflammation through the production of other signaling molecules called cytokines – but we also know that the microbiome/Gut-Brain-Axis can also regulate our metabolism and appetite through the production of signals such as hormones that are related to whether we store fat or burn fat.
Some of the newest drugs for weight loss and diabetes are actually just synthetic versions of the appetite hormones that our gut already makes naturally.
This is really exciting that we can use the power of the microbiome – and the nutrients that we feed it – to influence our body weight – so we can naturally lose fat and gain muscle. This is important for both how we look and feel, but also for our overall physical health – so it really is a combination of the mind/body approach that determines how we look/feel/perform at our best.
11- WHAT SHOULD WE DO FOR A HEALTHIER LIFE? HOW SHOULD WE LIVE?
I’m sure that everyone in your audience is well-aware that they need to “eat right” (such as less processed foods and more whole foods)- and get regular physical activity – and get adequate sleep – these are healthy lifestyle tips that we all know we should be doing everyday – but we often don’t do them because we’re so busy or stressed or tired.
Proper supplementation is something that anyone can do – it is simple. And – if a properly formulated supplement can help improve your mood and control your appetite, you are more likely to choose a better diet. A properly formulated supplement that helps improve your energy and motivation, might help you become more physically active and get more exercise. A properly formulated supplement that helps you reduce stress and relax could help you sleep better.
Supplements don’t “replace” our need for other aspects of a healthy lifestyle, but they can help us optimize the things that we’re trying our best to do – and our company is building a network of customers and business partners around the world to spreads this new idea of combining mental wellness and physical health so people can live their best lives.