Jeff: Welcome to the ATP Project, Episode 50: AMINOS – What’s good and what’s giving you man boobs.
In today’s controversial episode Matt and I talk about some cracker Amino Acids everyone should be taking to increase lean muscle mass, and there’s one Amino Acid that you want to get off immediately. This popular supplement will destroy your test levels, specifically your free test, and ramp up prolactin levels that may come with severe side effects. Stay tuned, the ATP Project is about to start.

Jeff: You’re with your hosts, Matt and Jeff. Matt?

Matt: G’day.

Jeff: We’ve been missing in action a little bit lately; people have been getting upset that they haven’t been getting their regular fixes or our podcasts.

Matt: Really?

Jeff: Yeah. I guess it’s what happens when you get a little bit busy.

Matt: Oh yeah, we’ve been busy.

Jeff: So, Matt, what has been happening?

Matt: With what?

Jeff: With everything. I mean since we got back from the Arnolds…

Matt: It’s all bloody secret, isn’t it? We can’t tell anyone anything we’re doing.

Jeff: Well we can, but we’d have to kill them.

Matt: Well, it’s a bit awkward. It might wreck our listener base or whatever they call it. Is that a word, listener base?”

Jeff: It is now, it’s a good term.

Matt: Okay.

Jeff: I mean the manufacturing has been taking up a hell of a lot of time, so we apologise people that we’ve been busy in the lab, obviously setting all that, which is going to be exciting.

Matt: Mm.

Jeff: And again, we’re doing that, Matt, because we just don’t trust people, in general, in fact I don’t trust any bastard.

Matt: No. No, it’s hard, man. You’ve got to crack the whip on absolutely everything. So yeah, we’re building the lab, like you say, a big manufacturing facility which is going to be awesome. And, even the working closer with all of our farmers and raw material suppliers, because, half the materials we’re getting are running out or are being taken over by Evil Corp and that sort of stuff.

Jeff: Evil Corp, I love that.

Matt: So yeah, if we want to have good clean ingredients that are made to a certain standard—we’re even having to make a lot of our own raw materials now, as well as putting them together.

Jeff: Mm. Anyway, that’s kind of…

Matt: Good fun.

Jeff: It is fun. Right. Death from Aminos. Well that’s an interesting topic. It’s funny though Matt, we’ve come a long way from the initial error of taking supplements. And, the funny thing, and we’ve spoken about this before, particularly body builders, but people who are out there training, used to be on the cutting edge, they couldn’t wait for science to catch up and so they would use themselves as a guinea pig and they would go and test and measure and determine their own results, which I still like, so long as you’re obviously working in the bounds of some form of safety. In other words, you’ve given it to your mate and he hasn’t carked it from it.

Matt: Yeah, yeah.

Jeff: But, Matt, let’s talk about some of the Aminos. We’re just talking about some of our favourite Aminos, and favourite products, and the funny thing is that some of these things keep coming around, but there still seems to be some myths about ones that are touted out there that are really good, which are bad, and some that are good but people have either forgotten about, or there are some myths surrounding them that we’d like to dispel.

Matt: Yeah, and a lot of it comes too from people who’ll go in to see their doctor and get a regular pathology test and things like creatinine will show up high and urea will show up high, and other signs of ammonia toxicity. The doctor will say, “Do you go to the gym? Are you taking supplements? Are you smashing down the proteins and that sort of stuff?” or they’ll see signs—raised liver enzymes.

Jeff: Well, that’s exactly what happened to me. Many years ago I actually went to the doctor for a full check-up and he came back and he said, “Look, I’m sorry but I’m a bit concerned about your liver,” and I said, “Oh, why is that?” and he said, “Well, your liver enzymes are quite high, they’re elevated.” And, he asked me, he said, “Do you train? Do you take protein?” and I said, “Yeah,” and he said, “Great. Come back in three months, we’ll do another test and see if they’re staying at the same level. It’s just obviously your body’s pumping out—your body’s working harder to break down the protein which then creates more of these side effects, if you like.

Matt: Yeah, well actually, the funny thing is, in regards to raised liver enzymes is; they’re not specifically liver enzymes, they’re signs of tissue destruction, commonly associated with liver damage, but they can also be associated with damage to other muscles. So, just by training you can actually get raised liver enzymes, and that’s why you always do these tests fasted and that sort of stuff, and don’t do them fasted after training.

Jeff: Yeah, right.

Matt: If you go and train and damage a muscle the same enzyme systems that will show that you’ve got liver damage will be high because you’ve had muscle damage.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: And, because it’s in the category under raised liver enzymes they’ll basically say, “You’re stuffed.”

Jeff: It’s funny, some of the conventional wisdom from a lot of the mainstream as well, too—I know that there was a push many years back, for people who were training, talking about taking pain killers, Ibuprofen and other things like that, to actually help overcome muscle soreness and things like that. It’s interesting because there was actually a research paper that was printed where they actually went and had a look at what happened when people were taking Ibuprofen afterwards, and what was actually happening in the body, and it showed absolutely no effect on recovery whatsoever.

Matt: Right. And, interestingly, if you use a COX-2 inhibitor, a particular form of anti-inflammatory, that will actually inhibit your muscle growth and hypertrophy, because if you’re blocking inflammation in the muscle you’re actually reducing the amount of recovery you’re going to get in the form of muscle hypertrophy and regeneration.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: You know how people use the arachidonic acid supplements and stuff?

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: That’s to trigger and inflammatory reaction in the muscle. If you hit a plateau they throw in the arachidonic acid, it aggravates your muscle inflammation and muscle soreness and everything and you’ll get exaggerated growth after it by triggering inflammatory reactions.

Jeff: Well, that’s not good if you’ve got cancers, though, is it?

Matt: No. No, it’s not good for arthritis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and a lot of the other things, because, they’re all inflammatory mediated. But, you might get sore again from training, but if you’re not getting sore anymore then you might get a bit more growth, but I don’t know if that’s worth it.

Jeff: Just change up your program for crap’s sake.

Matt: Well, arachidonic acid’s red meats and that sort of stuff anyway, so loading up with red meat you’re going to get arachidonic acid anyway.

Jeff: Well, I’ll just read out the conclusion to this Matt, since I mentioned it, but the conclusion was that ‘Ibuprofen administered had no effect of the accumulation of neutrophil markers or muscle damage or muscle soreness during the first 24 hours post exercise for muscle recovery.’ I just say that because, again, when I was working in a retail store, a lot of people were saying, “Yeah, I’m going to whack down some Ibuprofen, I’m going to take some painkillers after my workout to actually help with the recovery.” But, it’s been proven now effectively it has no—and, what you’re saying actually goes to suggest it actually…

Matt: Yeah, that it’s actually bad. But, the other thing too, that muscle soreness, the delayed onset muscle soreness, is lactic acid and ammonia usually, not inflammation.

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: The joint soreness and that is more likely to be inflammation, but within the muscle that delayed soreness is coming from acid waste production. And, that goes back to what we’re talking about. In the pathology testing the other thing that’s coming through all the time is, elevated creatinine, elevated urea and signs of ammonia toxicity, and they’re the wastes that we’re talking about that the kidneys have then got to process and clear away that can come from training.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: There are certain supplements that can make that worse or increase that, so we’ll have a chat about those, and there’s some other ways of strategising to use alternatives to those Amino Acids to avoid those sort of problems.

Jeff: Well, where do you want to start, Matt? Do you want to start with the good or do you want to start with the bad?

Matt: I don’t know, it’s all the same, isn’t it? It’s all a matter of controlling how we’re doing it.

Jeff: Cool. Well, let’s talk about Creatine Monohydrate, and I know that we’ve mentioned it before but I think it’s a severely underrated and probably under used Amino Acid.

Matt: Considering it’s the most well studied; there’s been more research on Creatine Monohydrate and how that works than any of the other forms of Creatine.

Jeff: Yeah. And look, I mentioned it before in one of the very early podcasts that we were doing. I remember when it first came out I bought some Creatine—gee, it would have been back in the mid ‘90s I think it would have been, when I first started using it. I bought it from a chemist and it cost me $160 for, I think, 300 grams. It wasn’t micronised—and, for our younger listeners who were probably born around the mid ‘90s they would just be having a fit thinking that they paid that sort of money.

Matt: Remember the L-Carnitine, the little tubs of L-Carnitine, they used to be like $70 and that sort of stuff; crazy.

Jeff: Yeah. Absolutely. It’s amazing how obviously these things, as they become more popular and more players entering the market makes them cheaper, and it becomes better. Like now they’re 99.9% pure, they’re micronised and micro-mesh size and excellent absorption. There’s a few really good companies out there, Ajinimoto, Creapure, who have got just brilliant controls in terms of the types of Creatine that they’re putting forward, and there’s no by products, because they’re pure you haven’t got the Creatinine and other things like that, which can occur. And still, Matt, with Creatine you have to be careful it doesn’t get wet or damp because that obviously can produce those by products anyway.

Matt: Creatine Monohydrate is still the most stable form.

Jeff: Do you still remember some of these companies? There was a company called MMUSA, which is out of business now, they were actually fined by the New Zealand Government for bringing out a liquid Creatine and saying that it was stable, and you took this little dropper of Creatine—again, some of the older guys would probably remember this—it was, “Hallelujah, this is so convenient, it’s easy.” I remember it at the time, I never stocked it because I just went, “This is absolute crap. There is no way that you can get—and again, if anyone wants to prove me wrong, I’m happy to hear that—but, you cannot create water stable Creatine.

Matt: Not for long.

Jeff: Eight hours, I think, and then it breaks down.

Matt: Yeah, something like that.

Jeff: So, anyway, it’s just interesting stuff.

Matt: Interestingly though, when you say you can get them 99% pure, that’s 99% pure Creatine Monohydrate. Yeah, so for example, if you look at a Creatine Monohydrate that’s about 88% Creatine. Okay? But, then if you go and have a look at other forms of Creatine like Creatine Oratate, which is only like 50% Creatine, and the rest is Orotic Acid. What are some of the others? Creatine Pyruvate is only 60% Creatine.

Jeff: So, the other stuff is what, the carriers?

Matt: Yeah, it’s the other carriers. So, when you have a look at this Creatine, and this is the exciting bits about technology, and eventually the science will catch up, but at this stage we know the functions of Creatine in the body. What it’s attached to will determine its delivery throughout the body, it’s stability and all that sort of stuff. So, with all the new novel forms of Creatine out there, Creatine Monohydrate has still been the most extens–extensively studied. God, it’s hard to speak, we’ve just totally forgotten how to speak lately. And, it’s got the least amount of side effects, it’s the most efficacious.

Jeff: Before we get into some of that, Matt, just again—and, we’re getting a lot of emails coming through from novices that haven’t trained much before or they’re just starting to get into it. Obviously a lot of people are recommending our podcasts, which is great. We do like to get into the high end stuff, but it would be remiss for me, Matt, not to just breakdown very quickly again, why people take Creatine Monohydrate. Why?

Matt: Alright, well go.

Jeff: Well, from what I understand people take Creatine Monohydrate is to help with ATP, which is Adenosine Triphosphate. That’s used to obviously help with any sort of anaerobic activity, sprinting, weight training, any of that sort of stuff. That then breaks down to ADP, which is Adenosine Diphosphate, but the body cannot use that as an energy source, it needs to be converted back to ATP, and what Creatine does is, it lends that phosphate molecule back, so it recycles the ADP back to ATP, which again improves power, strength, energy, and it does it more quickly.

Matt: Beautiful. Beautiful.

Jeff: Right. You’d think I was the scientist.

Matt: Yeah, that’s right. And, that was supposed to be the dumbed down version; well done. ATP, like you’re saying, it’s our energy currency for a lot of cellular reactions. We’re talking about exercise performance and that a lot, but we’ve got to understand that the majority of the chemical reactions within the body require some sort of catalyst, some fuel to induce that reaction. So, it’s easy to talk about ATP in regards to energy production and performance and that sort of stuff, strength and everything, but we’ve got to understand that there are so many other little functions in the body that require ATP just to function. So, we don’t just talk about muscle, but skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle and also the effects that it has in the brain.

Jeff: It’s really interesting some of this research, Matt.

Matt: Yeah, I know. And, even just for example, ATP is necessary to control the pathway of other Amino Acids throughout the body. So, for the conversion of Citrulline to Arginine require ATP. And, you know, the ability to take Ammonia into the Urea cycle actually requires ATP. So, ATP’s involved in detoxification processes, it’s involved in anti-aging processes, things like macular degeneration is associated with depleted APT in the eyes. So, it’s interesting to see where the research for Creatine could go.

Jeff: Actually, my eyes have been getting worse, and I think since I started using glasses as well, too. And, I have not supplemented with Creatine for ages. In fact, it’s funny, Matt, we’ve spoken about it but you just forget some of these good old things.

Matt: Yeah, I know.

Jeff: So, I’m actually going to start supplementing with Creatine again, and it will be interesting to see if it actually helps with my eyesight.

Matt: Well, when you do it, do it post-workout. Because, some of the new research coming through shows that the loading of Creatine is not necessarily necessary.

Jeff: I think a lot of the guys that are right up on their science have heard that, and I think they are doing that more. But, the old school way, and maybe because it wasn’t micronised, and maybe the uptake wasn’t as good—and, I think I spoke about it last week, Creatine was originally used with coffee because they thought it would actually enhance it. But, you don’t need to load anymore. What are they saying, around about—I mean the old adage was, you’re using about 1 gram for every 10 kilos of body weight as a sort of a rule, roughly.

Matt: Yeah. In a lot of research, for a maintenance dose, they’re using about 5 grams. Two grams a day is what they reckon you’d get out of your normal diet, but what the hell is a normal diet.

Jeff: Yeah, that’s true.

Matt: And, they said somewhere between 2 to 5 grams of Creatine is the sort of dose you’d use to replenish normal daily functions. If it is true that we’re getting around 2 grams a day out of our diet, if you’re a meat eater and all that sort of stuff, you’d probably supplement anywhere up to around 5 grams or so if you’re 60 odd kilos.

Jeff: Yeah, well that’s right. The old school, for the average guy that was 80 to 100 kilos I’d be recommending using 10 grams’ post-workout as a maintenance dose. Most people, Matt, go—well, if you take a little bit more it’s probably not going to harm you. I mean it’s so cheap nowadays, like probably throwing in a little bit extra—I mean unless you’re really taking huge amounts of Creatine there’s no real negative side effects.

Matt: The way they measure it is, they look at those levels of Creatinine. So, basically what happens is…

Jeff: And, what is Creatinine? We should break that down.

Matt: Creatinine is a waste product. So, Creatinine is a water soluble form of Creatine that gets eliminated out through the kidneys.

Jeff: It’s quite toxic, though, isn’t it?

Matt: Yeah, well they use it as a marker to see if your kidneys are functioning as a filter or not.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: So, basically when they see elevated Creatinine on a blood test they’re saying, “Oh, this person’s got kidney disease,” and then they come back to you and say, “What have you been doing to give yourself kidney disease?”

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: But, you have to understand that about 2% of your stored Creatine, in your muscle, every day gets converted to Creatinine and then you urinate it out. The studies show that people with more muscle mass make more Creatinine, to start with…

Jeff: That makes sense.

Matt: So, they’re going to have higher levels just because you’ve got more muscle mass, which means you’ve got more Creatine pool to make more Creatinine as an excessive waste product. But, if you do supplement with excessive amounts of Creatine and you’re not using that through exercise and that then it is definitely going to convert through to more Creatinine. And, that’s the thing with the studies on the loading doses when they were using about 20 grams of Creatine every day…

Jeff: And, 30 or 40 grams a day.

Matt: Yeah, well in the studies that they did it was 20 grams and it caused significant increase in Creatinine, and it took about six weeks after they stopped taking that for their Creatinine levels to drop off.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: Which, is a sign that Creatine loading worked, to a certain degree, because it showed that it took six weeks for that Creatine pool to deplete, but it didn’t show any improved performance or muscle Creatine levels than just supplementing with about 5 grams a day of Creatine in a maintenance dose.

Jeff: Okay.

Matt: So, doing a weeks’ worth of loading doesn’t necessarily increase muscle Creatine, but it does increase your Creatine pool and that sort of stuff; it doesn’t improve performance but it does increase your muscle Creatine and that sort of thing.

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: What you’ll find, though, is there are so many other factors. If you eat a lot of meat and you’ve got a lot of muscle mass you’re going to make more Creatinine. You’ve got also understand that if there are any kidney problems then your Creatinine is going to backlog regardless of supplementation.

Jeff: Which is why Creatine is not recommended for people with liver and kidney disease.

Matt: Yeah, exactly. Because, the Creatinine is going to backlog and become toxic. And also, things like drugs and that sort of stuff, that damage kidneys, are going to backlog the Creatinine. The other thing that you’ll find is, the drugs that are worse for the kidneys are things like Salicylic Acid. So again, and I think we’ve mentioned it in a few podcasts, for people who have Salicylate overload then dietary Salicylate that will even add a burden on to the kidneys, they can backlog the Creatinine.

Jeff: So, it’s a good idea for those people to probably skip the Creatine until they address the problem?

Matt: Yeah. Exercise itself increases the amount of Creatinine; that’s what I’m saying. But see, it’s very important, when you go get these blood tests, to take into consideration that you’re exercising and supplementing. When you see elevated levels of Creatinine compared to the normal, do you have more muscle mass compared to the normal? Are you eating more of these proteins and meats, before you go and assume that you’ve got kidney disease.

Jeff: But, it’s pretty much been ruled out that Creatine Monohydrate does not cause liver or kidney disease?

Matt: Not within reasonable doses.

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: But, you know, the toxic levels are pretty high though, so you’ve got to take massive doses to be able to cause that sort of damage, and even then, within a period of time, it eventually clears the stuff away.

Jeff: Nice. So Matt, the other big well subscribed to myth is that women shouldn’t use it, and it’s become a bit of a legacy thing, I think. Even if women are comfortable that it’s safe and that they’re not going to cause any damage, what they worry about is two things: one is water weight held underneath the skin, so subcutaneous water weight, which maybe with some poorer quality Creatine that wasn’t maybe quite so pure that might have happened, and I’m just assuming here. The other one is, they didn’t like what happened on the scales, because typically taking Creatine holds more water weight intramuscularly, that’s part of the beauty of how it works, and people were putting on anywhere between a kilo to two or three kilos, and of course women looking at that would hate it. But again, research suggests that it increases muscle hypertrophy, the more muscle that you have the higher the metabolic rate is, so it actually has an increase in lean body mass. So, it actually improves your percentage of body fat, basically.

Matt: Yeah.

Jeff: So, women should definitely use it, and Matt, I know you were saying there are some other benefits. And again, there’s a disclaimer here for, “Go and talk to your doctor,” and that sort of stuff. There was one study that actually showed for women, particularly, that it actually improved the symptoms associated with depression; women became less depressed when using Creatine.

Matt: Yeah. It’s a brain fuel as well, it’s fuel for these things. You need ATP everywhere.

Jeff: Well, I want to get into that in a minute. There has been some people suggesting that it may actually help with cognitive function and it may even stave off disease, I was reading some research that was showing that. And, people with Bi Polar that they have less Creatine activity in their brain, I think, in the left hemisphere of their brain. With regards to women again too…

Matt: Well, it might link in with that postnatal depression too, because the studies show much lower levels in women post-pregnancy. Don’t use it during pregnancy, according to us, disclaimers all that sort of stuff.

Jeff: And again, research scientists were looking at it, apparently it has a very, very profound relationship with the umbilical cord as well. So, maybe the umbilical cord, and I don’t know, this is just a hypothesis, but maybe the umbilical cord sucks up a lot of that, because obviously that would require ATP and Creatine Monohydrate would be required for that. So, the umbilical cord could be sucking up a lot of the Creatine.

Matt: Yeah, yeah.

Jeff: Again, we’re not suggesting it if you’re pregnant, and certainly consult your doctor about that, but consuming at least some red meat that naturally contains Creatine and fish; seafood is the other good source of Creatine.

Matt: Yeah. I should have a look at that study and find out what the people were eating to get about 2 grams of Creatine a day. What they were consuming to achieve that.

Jeff: Yeah. So, if you are out there and you’re training and whether you’ve been training for a long time or you haven’t, as a female, definitely, I would suggest, including Creatine Monohydrate as a supplement you should definitely be taking. I think it’s a great supplement to increase lean muscle mass.

Matt: Yeah.

Jeff: So Matt, what about the brain? Is there anything else there that you want to talk about?

Matt: No, I forgot.

Jeff: You need some Creatine.

Matt: Yeah, I do. Yeah, not really.

Jeff: Cool. So, I think we’ve covered off most of it, Matt, in terms of utilising Creatine. So, as far as we’re concerned, Creatine should definitely be on the list of supplements.

Matt: Yeah. And, this is the thing, use it post-workout, don’t bother loading it up. Understand too, this APT is predominantly inside the cells, so if you imagine, before you train and that sort of stuff, your cells are nice and plump and full it’s got nowhere to go, so throwing it in there it is going to contribute more to your extra cellular water rather than getting right inside your cells. But, after you’ve trained and you’ve depleted everything out of your cells, they go from nice plump grapes into sultanas, that’s when they’re craving it, that’s when you can throw the Creatine back in and it plumps them right up, that’s how you get proper delivery back into the muscles. It’s all about depletion and then reloading. We’re finding that a lot more with a lot of supplements and diets and foods, it’s not about load up, load up, it’s about depletion and then making your body crave these things so they go straight in and work really, really well.

Jeff: Yeah, yeah. And again, it doesn’t necessarily have to be used with carbohydrates and proteins. So, if you are taking carbs and proteins post-workouts, it’s definitely a good idea just to throw in with it, and I’m sure that most of the guys do, do that, but if you’re on a ketogenic diet or something like that, Matt, you can just take it post-workout with your protein and fats, not a problem at all.

Matt: Yeah, that’s right. Regarding that brain again, there was something else I just thought of; with the Glutamates—you know how I talk about the Glutamates being a nerve irritant?

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: One of the ways they do that, and this links in with the kidney function and liver function again, Glutamates can really screw around with the way Ammonia gets processed through the detoxification and can cause Ammonia issues, and that Ammonia can cause a lot of fatigue, but it also makes people angry and violent and that sort of stuff, as well as stinky and toxic, and stupor.

Jeff: Stupor.

Matt: I love that word, “You’re ammoniated into a stupor.” And, Ataxia, you know, like weird muscle tone and that sort of thing.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: So, too much Glutamates can actually screw around with the way Ammonia is processed into the body, because basically, Ammonia is taken in that citric—the reason why I’m talking about it—and, that pathology testing again with that elevated Urea, that is a by-product of Ammonia production. So, we produce Ammonia as a waste product through exercise and then the body has to take it away, and what it uses to take it away is Citrulline. Okay? So, the Citrulline enhances the clearance of Ammonia, and it’s quite a cool little process. Citrulline and Aspartate go through and make Arginine, and then the by-product of Arginine is Urea. So, Arginine then goes to Urea and then we eliminate it out through that Urea.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: Yeah. And, then other parts of that Arginine, as you know, will activate for Nitric Oxide production.

Jeff: Yeah. I love this little thing. When you were first explaining this to me, many years ago when we were obviously bringing out the Infrared, you were talking about the perpetual loop, if you like, and the way we can use things. I think companies are starting to get smart now and they’re not using Arginine anymore.

Matt: No.

Jeff: If you’re using Arginine, and again Matt, well you can correct me on that.

Matt: I always look at it like throwing petrol on a fire, in regards to Nitric Oxide. Wherever Arginine gets exposure to vasculature it’s got the ability to induce Nitric Oxide, and Nitric Oxide causes vasodilation. Okay? So, it opens up the blood vessels. So, when you take Arginine orally you’re going and creating Nitric Oxide in your digestive tract and into the blood stream around there, and dilating those blood vessels and you’re hoping you’ve got a little bit left. Where Citrulline does it via the kidneys, and this is why I want to talk about it, because this is how it fixes the Urea and everything in the kidney and your blood tests. So, supplementing with Citrulline 80 odd percent of the Citrulline you take goes straight to the kidneys, and then it sits there and waits for your body to say, “Hey, I’m starving of Oxygen, I need some vasodilation.” So, it has like this state dependent vasodilation, so it doesn’t bother dilating the blood vessels in and around your guts and liver and everything, instead it goes to the kidneys and then when it gets the signal it goes through and creates Arginine for Nitric Oxide production. And, it’s also involved in that detoxification of Ammonia by producing Urea, so you can clear it out.

Jeff: Yeah, it’s awesome eh? I love it. And, Matt, we’ve spoken about this thing before, with regards to Arginine, and I think it was one of our first podcasts that we were talking about it, and people were taking an excerpt and they were actually misquoting the study where they were saying, “Okay, so 5 grams of Arginine orally will increase Nitric Oxide in the place that you’re working out,” but you said it had diminishing returns, most of it was used in the gut. It’s like when you don’t eat before you train, obviously all the blood is going to be in the stomach as opposed to out in the periphery where you need it to be, right?

Matt: Mm.

Jeff: So, in terms of that, it was a misquoted study, because it was actually 20 grams intravenously that they had done, and that showed to have a powerful effect on Nitric Oxide at the working muscle site, which is hence why we believe that transdermal Arginine is actually far superior than that way. But, orally, Citrulline is powerful.

Matt: Yeah, well actually Citrulline is twice as powerful as Arginine at increasing blood levels of Arginine. For example, I think the study showed that 3 grams of Citrulline supplementation was equivalent to six grams of Arginine to increase blood levels of Arginine.

Jeff: Wow. Yeah, it’s crazy, isn’t it?

Matt: It is. It’s like 60% of the Arginine that you’ve naturally got in your arteries floating around, has come from Citrulline in the kidneys, not from the Arginine that you’ve consumed.

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: So, that’s why Citrulline, I love that as a supplement. There’s some really cool research for Citrulline, and it’s such a nice—I love it because it’s very effective, it doesn’t have the side effects, it bypasses all that gut stuff and goes straight into your periphery, so you can get systemic vasodilation, not local vasodilation. The local vasodilation is handy, that’s why we do Arginine in the transdermals. So, topical or transdermal Arginine is great for local vasodilation, as soon as that Arginine hits the blood vessels, and you’ve seen it, it’s pretty much instant. As soon as we put that Arginine in transdermally those blood vessels dilate. Imagine what’s happening in your gut, considering your gut is 400 square metre surface area and full of blood vessels. One of the other reasons why I love Citrulline is, because when Citrulline converts to Arginine, and then when Arginine converts to Nitric Oxide, the by-product of that reaction is Citrulline, so you’re recycling your Citrulline. It’s a much more efficient way of actually producing Nitric Oxide.

Jeff: And, Nitric Oxide again, just for those that are listening for the first time, is very, very powerful at increasing blood flow to the working muscles and cells, at increasing the uptake of nutrients and removing of wastes, and stuff like that. And Matt, I can’t remember, and I know that we’ve spoken about it before.

Matt: In the old fellow?

Jeff: Well, yeah.

Matt: Like, erections and stuff?

Jeff: Yeah, very good.

Matt: Stop looking at me.

Jeff: I’m not looking at you; I don’t want to look at you.

Matt: No, but that’s what I’m saying, it’s a good way of—anyway, I don’t know why we’re talking about that, but it’s a good way of showing that you have peripheral vasodilation. I’m not showing you. Stop looking at me.

Jeff: I don’t want to see it. The other thing that’s important then, with regards to that, Matt, is the impact of Citrulline on Nitric Oxide, where also Nitric Oxide has been shown to stimulate the satellite cells on the periphery of the muscle wall. So, a good pump is more than just about getting a good blood flow, it’s actually helping stimulate the satellite cells, telling the body that it needs to build more muscle tissue.

Matt: Do you know why?
Jeff: Why?

Matt: Because, of the same thing we talked about before, the inflammatory reaction. When you get an injury, when you get damage, you get Nitric Oxide. So, Nitric Oxide is one of the signals the body uses to signal that you’ve had muscle damage, and that then triggers the satellite cells and everything to increase repair. But, if it hasn’t necessarily been damaged it just basically will induce an exaggerated healing response. And a cool trick, man, I’ll tell you a cool trick, and some of the research shows this as well. When you’ve got that full pump, so like I say, the vasodilation is there, you’ve got crazy Nitric Oxide effect in there, the muscles are engorged, so another trick you can do, when you’re at that point you do those static stretches, if you hold out, if you stretch that muscle out, like just hold it with weights for like 45 seconds or something…

Jeff: Oh gees, if you can.

Matt: I mean it burns, it hurts worse than the reps, and you’ll be crying and that sort of stuff, but what happens is, it stretches. So, it’s already engorged and swollen, and I’m not—stop looking at me, I’m not talking about the erectile dysfunction stuff anymore.

Jeff: I’m sorry, you’ve put it in my head, I can’t help it.

Matt: Now, I can’t even hold me hands like this when I tell the story. But the—man, I’ve totally lost my train of thought.

Jeff: So, hold out the stretch, Matt?

Matt: No, I’m not holding out anything for you. Oh, no sorry. So, when your muscles are full and engorged with blood and swollen, and then you do this static stretch—now my arm even looks like a baby’s arm holding an apple—what happens there is you actually stretch the fascia and as you stretch out the fascia it becomes more permeable, it triggers this crazy Calcium influx, it triggers the body into thinking that this muscle tissue has been traumatised, damaged, and then stretched—I’m still talking about muscle tissue, Jeff.

Jeff: No, I’m with you.

Matt: And, then what happens, that triggers exaggerated growth and recovery.

Jeff: I can’t remember, I think it was one of the Eastern Block, maybe the Bulgarians or someone like that, I think they pioneered a lot of the stuff. I can’t remember exactly who it was. I was reading this ages ago and they were saying, very, very pronounced improvement in muscle hypotrophy by doing that.

Matt: Yeah. The other thing with Citrulline, that I wanted to say, was when we were talking about Creatine, we were saying Creatine Monohydrate is our preferred form, well I really like Citrulline Malate, when I have a look at the different forms of Citrulline, as opposed to just using pure L-Citrulline. Because, Citrulline Malate has got a lot of other cool functions, and when you attach these Amino Acids onto other things like this Malate, the Malate then provides a whole heap of other functions in regards to fuelling the Kreb Cycle, which actually fuels the active transport pumps, which helps the absorption of these Amino Acids and gets them out of the gut and improves their bioavailability. But, the Malate Acid basically breaks off and it fits into the Kreb Cycle part of the Malate Aspartate shuttle, and the Malate Aspartate shuttle fuels ATP production.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: So, you can see how you can use something like a Citrulline Malate with a Magnesium Aspartate, and then something like Creatine Monohydrate, and how they’re all starting to work synergistically.

Jeff: Yeah, that’s exactly right, man.

Matt: As the Malate goes into the Kreb Cycle what it does, it tricks—well, not tricks, it forces the proteins to be used for anabolic processes rather than catabolic processes, so it’s kind of really cool to actually help the function there.

Jeff: How are proteins used for catabolic functions, Matt?

Matt: Sorry. The proteins get broken down and get catabolised, and then used like a fuel.

Jeff: So, it’s like a fuel?

Matt: Yeah. So, providing the Malate there is an alternative fuel supply and in actually driving the waste. Even things like Lactate, it can help to create Lactate down anabolic functions used for ATP production, instead of being used as a source of fuel.

Jeff: It’s funny because, as I said, I haven’t used Creatine for a long time, I’m getting back into it. I’m actually going to be throwing it into the Infrared which contains the Citrulline and also the Aspartic Acid as well.

Matt: Yeah, do that. Yeah, post-workout and that sort of thing.

Jeff: Yeah, yeah. The mail out, I should say. So Matt, anything else on Citrulline? Where is it actually found, anyway, do we know?

Matt: Watermelon.

Jeff: Watermelon?

Matt: Yeah, watermelon peel is where it mainly comes from. I think it’s the Greek word for watermelon, Citrulline or something like that, and that’s where it actually comes from. Yeah, watermelon peel, predominantly.

Jeff: Our Western Australian Rep, who’s from Petras…
Matt: Strewth.

Jeff: …apparently there’s no s, it’s just Petra.

Matt: Yeah, whatever.

Jeff: He would probably have known that.

Matt: Yeah, he’d know, he’d know the Greek word for watermelon, sure.

Jeff: I’m sure.

Matt: Yeah, but I reckon it’s cool because the Citrulline Malate it’s got a lot of really cool research on it, showing increased specific force production, increased endurance. There was one study with the Citrulline Malate where they used 8 grams, it’s a massive dose, our product, I think, has 3 grams, which is a very big dose compared with what’s on the market, usually. So, two and a half serves of that, which is how athletes actually do it, they get an increase of reps by about 50%.

Jeff: Gees.

Matt: And, it also reduced muscle soreness by about 40 to 80% over the next few days.

Jeff: That’s massive, Matt, that’s massive.

Matt: By 40%, where did 80% come from?

Jeff: Obviously with trained athletes that have been training for a long time, even an increase in 10% is absolutely huge.

Matt: What we should do, at the end of this, and I will remember to do it, is we’ll get a reference list of all the studies that we’ve mentioned today; I’ll have to go and dig the things up.

Jeff: You have to do it, though.

Matt: Yeah, I’ll do it, man. It’s on the record, isn’t it?

Jeff: You’ve promised the people; the people will be upset if you don’t.

Matt: Won’t they.

Jeff: Anyway. So Matt, Citrulline is definitely a must have, Creatine Monohydrate, definitely a must have, and Arginine not necessary, in fact negative if used orally, on its own.

Matt: Transdermally; do it.

Jeff: Yeah. But, if you’ve got any product that’s got Arginine in it orally, Arginine, AAKG, or any other forms that they may use, forget them, forget it.

Matt: Yeah, it doesn’t make much difference.

Jeff: So, Citrulline and Aspartate make that, Matt?

Matt: Make Arginine?

Jeff: Yes.

Matt: Yeah, yeah, that’s right.

Jeff: So, they make Arginine. So, therefore D-Aspartic Acid—now I know—you’re looking at me funny already, right?

Matt: Yeah, well.

Jeff: So, D-Aspartic Acid is an Amino Acid that is used for improving testosterone, that’s how it’s marketed, that’s how it’s sold, it’s very popular, we think it’s shit.

Matt: Yeah, I do too.

Jeff: So, alright, that’s pretty bold and plain, Matt.

Matt: Isn’t it. You could make a lot of people angry there.

Jeff: Oh well, that’s what I’m here for. And, you know what, then I’ll just palm them off to you.

Matt: Yeah, that’s alright. You can find me on Facebook haha.

Jeff: So, I actually like the D-Aspartic Acid.

Matt: I’ll bet you do.

Jeff: No. Tell us Matt, D-Aspartic Acid…

Matt: No, well the reason I didn’t like it originally was because it bugged the hell out of me because people were quoting from studies that were showing that it significantly boosts testosterone, and people will say to me that it’s the only thing that’s ever been proven to boost testosterone. And, they’ll quote back from studies that have also shown, within the same study, that it triggered Aromatase which converts the testosterone to Testosterone, and also could directly, on tissues that made Testosterone, would make more Testosterone. So, D-Aspartic Acid originally when studied showed that, yeah, you affect the nuts with it, and it makes testosterone, but every other tissue made whatever that tissue’s job was; like it’s a nerve irritant.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: It’s not far off Aspartame.

Jeff: MSGs?

Matt: Yeah, those sort of things; it’s just a nerve irritant, and so whatever that nerve goes to. So, when I’m talking about the production of Arginine from Citrulline and Aspartate its L-Aspartate. So, you want Magnesium L-Aspartate, so one of those L-Aspartate forms is the one that provides Aspartate to your bloodstream and it’s the bloodstream Aspartate that works with the Citrulline to make Arginine.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: And besides, then what happened with that D-Aspartic Acid, a few years later they went and tried to work out the ideal dose in humans, and they did a study on 3 grams, and the conclusion of that study was that they couldn’t really see any benefit for it in humans using 3 grams of D-Aspartic Acid for performance, for testosterone, for any of the hormones, actually.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: So, then they followed it up again with another study, I think, last year, where they compared 3 grams to 6 grams, and thought, “Okay, let’s double it again, and see if we can right dose of D-Aspartic Acid to recreate that original trial that was making testosterone and Testosterone and everything?

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: Well, the 6 grams of D-Aspartic Acid dropped testosterone through the floor. So, actually using the 6 grams of D-Aspartic Acid actually compared to placebo made the testosterone levels significantly lower.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: And then, with a P value of .03, which is statistically significant.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: The more zeros the smaller the number, the more statistically significant it is.

Jeff: Right.

Matt: And then, when they compared the levels of free testosterone it crashed that even further with a P value of .005 or something, it really statistically significantly dropped testosterone.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: And, in particular, it dropped free testosterone, which is the opposite to what was being told.

Jeff: The obvious reverse of what we try to do.

Matt: So, they’re all still quoting back from the original one study that found it did some good things, and then people always say it’s the only thing that’s ever been studied and shown to be effective when it’s only ever been studied and shown to be effective once, and the rest of the time it’s been studied and shown to be not effective. But, it even screws around—it has a negative effect on Melatonin production.

Jeff: Really?

Matt: So, it totally screws with Melatonin production.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: Yeah, there’s heaps of weird stuff about—it increases prolactin significantly, which is the chemical associated with man boobs. Prolactin blocks your hormone activity. So, you know when you’re stressed and everything like that?

Jeff: Yeah.

Matt: One of the ways your body says, “Well, don’t reproduce,” and that sort of thing, is by releasing prolactin to offset the testosterone that’s already out there.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: So, it does all these weird things, you know.

Jeff: Actually, there’s a friend of a friend of mine…

Matt: Oh yeah.

Jeff: He’s not even a friend of mine.

Matt: Tell me about it son. Okay, Jeff, so your friend, and his name’s Jeff?

Jeff: No, we’ll just call him JD.

Matt: Hash tag the other guy.

Jeff: Yeah, thanks very much. He was lactating, and I reckon that he would have been using a fair bit of gear, but to bounce his natural levels up again, he started using D-Aspartic Acid and couldn’t work out why he was producing more milk than a bloody nursery. So, in terms of D-Aspartic Acid, and Melatonin, obviously for people who aren’t aware, which most of our listeners would be, but Melatonin, very, very important for sleep.

Matt: Yeah, that’s right.

Jeff: So, you’re just screwing yourself up massively; get off that shit. There you go, that’s the word from Jeff.

Matt: Yeah, well done. No, definitely that’s one Paper we have to release to everyone and show them that.

Jeff: Yeah, well we’re going to get some people come back and, “No, I use this and I don’t have boobs and I’m massive,” you know.

Matt: Yeah, that’s good. The funny thing is too, it depends on your body type too, probably. But, if you’ve got a lot of fat and you use those things you’ve got a lot more Testosterone tissue with a lot more Aromatase, you’re going to get a lot more of the Estrogen production and less of the Testosterone. But, that study—and, this is the other thing I loved about that study with the D-Aspartic Acid—it was actually in resistance trained men. So, they specifically selected blokes that had been training for a couple of years.

Jeff: Wow.

Matt: Had a couple of years’ experience and they were fit and they were ready to go, they were the perfect examples of who should respond, and it had the opposite effect.

Jeff: Wow, okay. So, if you’re on D-Aspartic Acid, DAA, get off it immediately.

Matt: Yeah.

Jeff: Very interesting Matt. Is there anything else that we want to cover off on today?

Matt: No.

Jeff: Great. Well, thanks everyone for listening, we’re obviously holding the FAQs till next week. Tell us how you like the new format. If you like us to do FAQs at the end of it then we will. We spend a little bit more time going through a lot of the studies. Matt’s going to put up some of the reference lists of the studies that he’s been quoting from as well, too, so that you can go and have a look for yourself. And, to having a look at how things work. We believe that not one size fits all.

Matt: Yeah, well that’s what science is.

Jeff: Everybody’s different, everybody has different body chemistry.

Matt: Yeah.

Jeff: Some of the things that you said, Matt, in terms of people who have a higher body fat percentage than people who have lower, that fat has more Estrogen.

Matt: Yeah.

Jeff: So, therefore your body, chemically, is different.

Matt: Mm.

Jeff: It’s saying, to think that you can look at everybody and consider everybody to be the same, and which is why with everything that is said, and is why we say, “Question everything,” even what we say, you determine what works for you in your circumstance. All that we’re presenting is some of the evidence that has been tested, some of the evidence that’s been put forward in peer reviewed studies. So yeah, if you like D-Aspartic Acid and you like man boobs go ahead. And, Matt…

Matt: Oh man, we’re going to get shot.

Jeff: That’s great. Last word, Matty?

Matt: Goodbye.

Jeff: Alright people, thanks for listening and we’ll see you next week.

Matt: Oh man.

END OF TRANSCRIPT