In all disciplines, peak performance requires preparation, focus and good health. This episode’s guest, David Patchen, Senior Vice President at Raymond James, has experience helping professionals grow personally and professionally by coaching teams many top advisors to record results.
Join host and Partner of Confluence Financial Partners, Greg Weimer, as they discuss how sleep, diet and the immune system can impact performance and overall health. Tune in to benefit from Patchen’s more than 35 years of professional experience helping people optimize their performance and maximize their lives — both professionally and personally.
Confluence Financial Partners — Peak Performance | Episode #13
Dave: And I’m delighted to be here, Greg. Thank you so much for the warm welcome. Hi, everybody out there and
many of you in my native hometown.
Greg: We look forward to learning from you. You should also know Dave is a snazzy dresser. Like I’ll tell you, like, I
think I can wear some, some jackets with a little bit of pop. He just, I see him at a meeting and he just, he
Dave: Well, I consider myself coachable, Greg. That’s a lot of what we’re going to talk about today. I seek the
expert guidance of other really talented people. I have a great tailor who was introduced to me years ago and
he does great work at a great price. So that’s another topic we can discuss sometime.
Greg: Yeah. Why don’t we start out with immune system and I mean, you talk about you, I heard you say things like
cellular performance in the past conversations and biohacking and now with COVID I think it’s top of mind tell
us about the immune system, how we can improve it and more specifically how we can protect ourselves
potentially from COVID.
Dave: Yeah. So what we’re going to talk about today, when you use a term like biohacking and I use the term, I
consider myself a self-proclaimed biohacker, it’s about looking at the body and saying, hey, the human body
has an operating system and that operating system can be hacked based on what we eat, how well we sleep, how well how strong our exercise regimen is basically, how are you performing at the cellular level.
That’s what preventing diseases like COVID is all about and what we’re talking about. And by the way, folks, as I mentioned, I’m not a doctor. Find a functional medicine practitioner. If you’re not receiving the type of
assessment tools that I talk about today, if you don’t feel like your approach to medicine is being customized, that’s what a functional medicine practitioner does because your cells and your DNA is different than mine.
And so you’re going to want to start by assessing, and we’re going to talk about, I’m going to tell you how I measure my sleep. I’m going to tell you the best DNA test. I’ve taken nine of them. I’m going to tell you a
couple of the ones that I highly recommend you take a look at. I’m going to talk about diet and gut health. I’m sure you’re hearing and reading that your gut is your second brain. And how do I get my gut healthy? Well I’ll
tell you an assessment before we were done that you’re going to be able to gauge how healthy your gut is, but all of these tie back, Greg, into how is my body operating on a cellular level?
Greg: No, I use a concierge physician who does a lot of that, which we’re very, very fortunate. Most medical professionals have some just, they’re just not able to do that. But what specifically is a functional medicine practitioner? Is that an MD? How do you find one?
Dave: Yeah. So, all you have to do is Google ‘functional medicine near me.’ And you’re going to find practitioners in your marketplace. They aren’t all MDs. Some are DOs, some are chiropractors, and it really comes down to, they have a different set of protocols that they’re going to use on the front end to assess you. And it’s going to be, your care is going to be customized based on that set of protocols.
Greg: I think because, you know, I did one in my physician. She ran a test to tell me which foods I should and shouldn’t eat if I have an upset stomach. She gave me my green foods, my yellow foods and my red food. So red food meant would make, give me an upset stomach. I was blown away. And this is for me, yours will be totally different, but I was fascinated by it. My red food is a banana for my cellular makeup. If that’s the way to say it, I shouldn’t eat a banana. How many people would know that? Usually if you get an upset stomach,
they say, eat a banana. So that’s a type of thing you’re saying, it’s specific to you. And that’s an unusual test for someone to run.
Dave: Correct. Normally an MD under standard protocol isn’t giving guidance on tests like you described. You’re
going to find more recommendations along those lines from a functional medicine practice. So, we can segue right into that, Greg. Oh, and by the way, what you described was a, probably a food sensitivity test and that, that isn’t necessarily customized to your genes. That’s customized to how your gut flora, so to speak, your gut bacteria is functioning. Interestingly enough, since we’re sharing personal information, I was
a daily banana eater and banana came up as one of my red foods when I did — the tests that I like you to do first folks is Viome, V-I-O-M-E dot com. Go to that website. They’ve got a bunch of different tests. I’d want you to do your gut health test first because that’s going to go right in on — it’s not the most fun test to do because it’s a stool test. So you’re going to have to, you’re going to have to play with your poop, but you do a stool test and send it back to them and they’re able to take your sample and because of all the algorithms that these geniuses have written, they’re going to be able to tell you your red, yellow, and green foods, just like Greg was describing. That’s a great way to start because one of the questions everybody has is, what should I eat? What should I not eat? And you shouldn’t get that information from me. You should let your body tell you the answer to those questions.
Greg: So, you mentioned it’s V-I-O-M-E dot com. And I just, I think I know you’re going to give us a lot of other resources. This may be an opportunity for us to share how much ownership do you have in any of the businesses you’re about to recommend.
Dave: Yeah, I’m glad you brought that up too, folks. Why I strongly believe this time that you’re going to spend, we’re going to spend together is so valuable is because — I’ll tell you why I started doing this work. Part of
what my team does is put on conferences for our advisors, like the great advisors in Confluence. And I know many of them well, and, and we have these speakers that are, that climb Mount Everest, that are ultramarathoners,
that are great people. And they’re very inspirational, but our advisors came to us and said, you know, I can’t, I’m a normal person. I can’t relate. I’m not gonna climb Mount Everest or hike across Antarctica anytime soon, can you give us some material that we can relate to and really dig into? And so
that’s why, and that was part of what drove me, other than some personal things that I’ll touch on today. But I received zero, not one nickel from anything that I share with you today, I’m going to, I’m going to suggest, because I’ve done so many different assessments of all types. I’m going to tell you the ones I liked the best, and you can go check them out for yourselves, but know in advance, I’m not compensated in any form or fashion. I’ll even give you discount codes. They aren’t my discount codes, their discount codes from the people whose podcasts I listened to and who are friends of mine. But I get no benefit at all. So, I think I’m valuable to your clients, right? Because they’re getting absolutely unbiased advice. There’s nothing more you know, direct from the source that you’re going to receive than this information.
Greg: We talk to clients a lot about figuring out what you’re ‘all about’ is all about. And I love the fact that your ‘all about’ is just helping people improve. And that’s your passion. And so, we appreciate you being here. Let’s go back to, let’s go back to the immune system specifically, and let’s talk about, COVID like, you know, are there things that you can be doing that could help protect from COVID, but more generally diseases also?
Dave: Yeah. So gut health is, is going to be one or two, and sleep is one or two. And then diet. I mean, the things we’re going to talk about today, all boost your function at the cellular level, and what we’re talking about here, as I said, I’d stay general. I’ll get a little bit specific here in areas, mitochondrial function. So, so much of what I’ve learned and what I now practice boosts my cellular function at a mitochondrial level. So, the
stronger your, their, my, the mitochondria are the powerhouses of your cells. The better you sleep, the better your diet, the better your gut is functioning. And food is really, you know, food is such an important part of
gut health and gut health is an important part of sleep. So, having strong mitochondria, being strong at the cellular level, being healthy, truly healthy is going to make you, you know, much more immune to a virus, a
common cold a flu than if your immune system is compromised.
Or if, or we know the mortality rate with COVID, right. If you have diabetes or you’re overweight, right? Your risks are much greater.
Yeah. And what they’re finding, Greg, is everything starts, you mentioned diabetes, everything starts, they’re calling Alzheimer’s type three diabetes. Now, many of you have read this. That’s, what’s interesting about the audience I’m speaking to, some of you know this as well or better than I do. Some of you have never heard of this stuff. So, what do I mean by that? Let’s talk about sugar. Let’s talk about our diets. So, the two things I want you to focus on, those of you that are already diabetic, or pre-diabetic, you’re already looking at your blood sugar on a hopefully regular basis, a couple of times a year, at least, if you’re diabetic more often than
that. And then, in addition to your blood sugar there, the other ratio that you just don’t hear about, that’s really important is your omega six to omega three ratio. And you hear about omega threes. You hear about taking fish oil and the challenge there is finding the right product, in my opinion, and I’ll share one in the notes that I share with Greg and team here when we’re done,
but what’s happened is our diets are too much processed food. There is — and processed food is designed to live longer on a shelf. And it’s the omega sixes that are in processed food that make it last long. And that used to be more trans fats, hydrogenated oils. And, you know, the government’s figured that out and they’ve almost gone away, but what they’ve replaced the trans fats with our seed oils. So pretty much any product you pick up off the shelf, folks, you’re going to see the following: canola oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, and while those oils can be okay in moderation, unfortunately now we’re getting bombarded with omega sixes and real quick, as I wrap this up, Greg, our ancestors, the cave men and women they’re omega six to omega
three ratio was one-to-one. It was literally equal. The average American today is about 25 to one omega six to omega three, because of our atrocious diets. I’m proud to say my ratio is four to one, omega six to three. So, I’m because of all the changes I’ve made in my diet I’ve made a lot of progress there, but that ha— so that’s something that helps you function at a higher cellular level. And then the sugar piece. You know, one of our nutrition speakers
shows a slide of actual sugar cane, a sugar cane farm in South America. And you see these big stalks of a very rigid plant. You know, if you, Greg, if you wanted to go and chew on the husk of a sugar cane, it’s going to be healthy. That’s a healthy way to consume sugar. Unfortunately, as everyone knows, the white process product that too many people eat too much of, our body, wasn’t designed to process that. So that’s partly why, that coupled with another here’s another macro I want to throw at everybody. It’s called, the concept is called hormesis. Okay. And my exercise people and people that like to drink. Hormesis is what doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger. Okay. So, we know we can drink. If we’re bad, we can drink a fifth of alcohol, right? But a little bit of alcohol is good for us. A little bit of exposure to extremely cold temperatures is good for us. A sauna, a little bit of extremely high temperatures are good for us. The problem is, why am I talking about this? The problem is Greg, we were not designed as human beings to live 24/7, 365 at 72
degrees. We are pampering ourselves too much. Okay. And that’s why we are developing—
Greg: Wait, what do you mean by that? We’re pampering ourselves?
Dave: We’re constantly controlling our environment in a way that is dumbing down our bodies and dumbing down, our ability to perform, because of that our resilience is dumbed down. It’s no different than any other form of muscle fatigue. We have cellular fatigue because we don’t stress our bodies appropriately and frequently enough.
Greg: So, it feels then, like in the last year with everybody wearing it, and we’re not having an opinion on masks or anything like that, but with really fewer germs and masks and that— are you suggesting that long term there could be a danger to that.
Dave: Well, it will. They’ve already said flu has gone down. The reason flu has gone down is because we’re not transmitting as much. The reason we’re not transmitting as much as cause we’re, we’re ameliorating with the mask. So, I’m very supportive of that. And here’s why, because, folks, everything I just described is where we are as a race, as humans. We’re all trying to be comfortable all the time because of that, our immune systems are compromised. Because of that, so many of us are susceptible to COVID. My suggestion
would be, and this will never happen because it’s — now I am going to — don’t — I’m not going to get, I’m not going to get, I’m not going to get party specific. This is, forget Republican, Democrat, Independent, it doesn’t matter. We are babying ourselves folks. We’re babying everybody. Everything’s free. Everything’s this, that. Now I’m here to help you. My, Greg mentioned, my mission in life, I’ll tell you my personal value proposition is to help people go to places and accomplish things that they wouldn’t have accomplished, absent our engaging together. And so, I get my juice out of life, helping people like you that are listening, try something new and make an improvement, make an impact. Okay? That being said, if we are not challenging ourselves, if we are literal couch potatoes, cavemen didn’t have air conditioning, folks, cavemen didn’t have heaters. And they aren’t
our too far distant ancestors. And because of that, the body wasn’t made to be constantly comfortable. If the body’s not challenged, much like a muscle it atrophies. And that’s where these inflammatory diseases, because that’s what we’re taught. When we’re talking about heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s diabetes, bad is cellular information. That is the driver and the precursor of those afflictions.
Greg: We were talking about diet. So, as you were saying that, by the way I was Googling, I wanted to Google ‘new diets’ and here’s the confusion, right? So, people are like, okay, I’m in, I’m going to go figure out what to,
and not to eat. When you Google like new diets, smoothie diet, best diets of 2021…
Dave: Keto, you’re going to see keto in there.
Greg: And so, you know, and then it’s like omega three, omega sex, like — dumb it down for us.
Dave: Okay. Start by assessing. Everyone’s different. Remember I told you, I’m not gonna, I’ll tell you what Dave does, but you’ve got to figure out what you need to do. So do a Viome test or another, that’s a gut health test, do a food sensitivity test. And I’ll share with you some of the ones that I’ve done there, Greg, that I like. Do a DNA test. I’ll share with you the two DNA companies I like best are actually out of Toronto. Now we’re getting into more, you know, that’s a more expensive, that’s going to cost you a few hundred dollars. But I think the listeners in this call are willing to invest in their health on a long-term basis. So, what you’re going to learn from that is—so I know I’m jumping around.
Greg: No but, so the output of that is a normal person with normal knowledge will have information that they can act on?
Dave: Yes. Because the companies I recommend, there’s a consult that a physician will do with you that will interpret the report and the data for you. Very great question. Very important, because left to your own devices, folks, you’re only going to get so far. So, let me give you some examples. Okay. This is about, it’s not about you. I don’t have the gene that converts sunlight into vitamin D. I don’t have the gene that converts beta carotene into vitamin A. So, I can eat all the carrots I want folks, I don’t get, I get fiber from them, but I don’t get vitamin A from them.
Greg: You should have stayed in Pittsburgh, my friend, we don’t get sunlight so—
Dave: Yeah, yeah, I know. I’m wasting all this great sunlight down here. But see, I wouldn’t know that. Now the normal blood test didn’t show me as vitamin D deficient. When I did further, this further SpectraCell laboratories food sensitivity tests, that’s what told me that I was vitamin D deficient, by the way, that test, SpectraCell lab laboratory tests also will give you a, a measurement for your immune system health. And I have, I have a stronger immune system than a 20-year old. That’s, all this stuff, all this biohacking that I do. So, I know we’re rambling, Greg, but that’s why I think the solution part of the solution— I’m going to be clear: part of the solution is not just masking to protect yourself from COVID and other viruses. It’s boosting your immune health. Okay? Because it, my immune system strength, I’m going to process this virus a whole lot differently than somebody. And we all know, we know it’s overweight folks, it’s diabetics, it’s people with heart disease, it’s people, cancer, it’s people with other inflammatory conditions that have compromised their immune system that are most susceptible to COVID.
Greg: Okay, good to know. So cellular performance, get tested. You can biohack and it’s gonna, it’s going to increase your immune system and seek out a functional medical practitioner.
Dave: Yeah, now the diet—
Greg: And diet. And you’re done.
Dave: And back to diet, a couple of simple macros: eat whole foods, eat — not at Whole Foods — eat whole foods. Now here’s the thing about COVID since a lot of us are staying home, if you remember the beginning of COVID, one of the real huge benefits of the beginning of COVID was they were giving away raw fruits, vegetables, live food, because they had too much of it. That would have been a perfect time for people to start to develop these habits. So, eat whole foods. If you’re going to eat a bread, make it something like a
sprouted grain bread. There’s my market. I go to a sprouts market. I buy a sourdough bread that has three ingredients. So that’s another, I mentioned those oils earlier. I want those, omega sixes I want you to stay away from. If you eat a whole foods, a bread isn’t a whole food. It’s processed because the grains are processed, but at least eat a bread that has as few as ingredients as possible or make it at home. Okay. But otherwise, try to eat whole foods.
Meats, real quick, Greg, I’m just giving you the best of the best, everybody. I want my peeps from Pittsburgh to have the best. I do not buy chicken. If you want to read a great book, read a book called The Dorito Factor. You’ll learn more about chicken than you ever wanted to. Bottom line: even the organic chicken at the grocery store is not the best chicken. And the best chicken are pasture chickens, the best eggs, by the way, in your grocery store, I’ve been to Pittsburgh. I’ve seen them. You have ‘em there.
Greg: Oh no, wait a minute. So I was in, so I go to the grocery store, like maybe not often, I’ll leave it at that. And I’d walked by the egg counter and I just stood there 33 different types of eggs. And I’m like, when the hell did
this happen, we had 33 eggs. And then we hired a nutritionist, Lori and I hired a nutritionist. She was fabulous. But so, she had very, so she also said on the meat, is it grass-fed that is better?
Dave: Yes. Grass-fed, grass-finished. It’s all about what your animal consumes that makes up their bod composition, folks. And it’s also their environment. So, a free range cow is a happy cow and they’re a grass eating cow. So, look for grass-fed, grass-finished in your meats.
Greg: I grew up in Johnstown though, I got to tell you like the typical person listening to this, you know, the kid from Johnstown and he’s going like, okay, this is crazy! Like, we’re like, but you’re saying it isn’t a fad. It isn’t, this is real.
Dave: Greg, Greg, I did this when I was home in Pittsburgh, and I stayed with my sister up in Cranberry and her husband and their family. And I bought, I had my own food shipped in from Whole Foods not to be condescending. I, I didn’t want to eat their food, you know, I want to provide for myself. Well, the eggs I wastelling you about they’re called Vital Farms. And on your carton
of Vital Farms eggs, you can go on Vital Farms website and see the chickens that you’re eating the eggs from. They’re out and about foraging and
eating a traditional chicken diet. They’re not in coops. What is, what is the definition, Greg, of free range? So, you see free range, that was what I used to buy. Free. Right? Free range. Sounds great. Doesn’t it? Free Range sounds like the chickens are free in the range. You want to know what to— go Google it, folks. Okay. Literally there isn’t really a standard. And the minimum standard in the industry has become the door of the chicken coop has to be open for five minutes a day. Okay.
Greg: So, it feels like so many things in our society. And I don’t want to get political with it. We’re being, we are, we are like on food, we’re being duped. And I’m telling you, we hired this nutritionist and at Confluence, we
should get a nutritionist for our clients. It’s something that we’re going to try to think about and work on over the next year. But it is so important, if we help people with their wealth, but their health isn’t okay, we haven’t
Greg: So, and I can tell you, when we hired our nutritionist, for anyone listening, if they’re saying, is this real? We did it with our nutritionist. We got in better shape. We felt better. And we, and my wife and I, we’re getting back at it because we did get off the wagon for a little bit. And you just feel, you just have more energy. You were saying for, your body’s a machine. How you just, you burn calories. It’s
Dave: I fixed my gut. Yeah. I, folks. I’m 5’11. My, by the way, one of the DNA tests I took, I don’t want to diss it. It’s just not going to give you what the higher end ones will give you. I did 23 and Me. I’m 90% Italian ancestry, it says I’m supposed to weigh 210 pounds. Okay. Folks, I weigh 148 pounds. So, I have defied my DNA by all of the hacking that I do. I’m not starving folks. I eat everything I want. What happens when you work on your gut over time is your taste preferences change. And you really like whole foods. A couple of things, I want to button up the Vital Farms Eggs. Here’s, if you don’t believe me folks, this is what happened at my sister’s house. So, we’re up in Cranberry. I say, pull your eggs out, make yourself an egg. I’m going to crack my egg in the skillet. I’ll bet you 10 bucks my yoke is more orange than yours. And they were like, they didn’t want to bet me because they knew I’d win. And I cracked the egg. Well, guess what, they are. They now buy Vital Farms Eggs. It’s all these little things, everything that goes in your body folks, I believe you should try and find the very best, closest to the source, natural product possible, with the least ingredients possible. That should be your mission with everything that goes in your mouth. Now, Nancy and I
just spent Valentine’s weekend. So, everybody knows, I live a normal life. Nancy and I, Nancy is my wife. We just spent the weekend in Charleston, South Carolina. Any of you all know, Charleston, South Carolina, it is restaurant Mecca. We went out three straight nights. I, whatever the heck I wanted, I just eat good food. So, I ate a lamb burger, okay, versus eating the grade-A, you know, mass-produced meat burger. It’s those types of nuance decisions that I made. But I put Heinz ketchup on that burger folks. And some Heinz mustard, and some Heinz mayonnaise—
Greg: Did you eat the bread?
Dave: I ate some of the bread. I don’t eat a lot of the bread and I would never, I would never eat a traditional hamburger bun on a regular basis. But do I, you know, did we have dessert? Did we have, it ends on the last
night? Did I have a piece of pecan pie? Yes. So, don’t think, here’s the beauty. This is what I want to inspire you by, once you gut gets going. Remember when you were a kid, and I was up at IUP eating pizza, 10 every
night and my gut could handle it. But over time I destroyed my gut and that’s why I had to work my way back. Folks. I don’t gain. I can go do that for three, four, five. We go, we’ll go skiing out west during the spring here
in a few weeks, I’ll drink beer and, and almost every night. And I’m okay because I don’t, my gut flora is functioning again at a high level.
Greg: So how long does it take to get your gut flora functioning at a high level?
Dave: It depends. It depends on what you do, Greg. It depends on how disciplined you are to putting the right food, figuring out, figuring out, doing the assessments. Number one, everybody’s different. So, you all start to
figure out what’s best and worst for you. And then, you know, the answer, Greg is, just like financial planning, if you’re disciplined to the right approach, you’re going to have the results sooner. If you’re not, if you’re back and forth, it’s going to take you longer. By the way, we completely, a lot of you know this, or have heard this. We completely replace our entire body at this cellular level every seven years. So, at the very least, if those of you stay disciplined, you will be a completely different operating mechanism in seven years. And you know, gradually along the way.
Greg: Yeah. So, when we had our nutritionist, it was a three-month thing. And so, what the first month was a lot of education, second month, you know, we didn’t, we ate by the book a hundred percent of the time. And then after that, you know, if you ate 85% of the time, if you eat, what’s good for your gut. We had a lot of results. We’re going back to it. And I’m going to tell you, for anybody listening, it sounds complicated, but it’s not, it’s not. Once you, right, once you start learning how to make good decisions—
Dave: Eat whole foods, folks, eat whole foods and eat the best quality produce. Hopefully we’re going to get it. Buy European when you can. I hate to say that, I’m American. I love America. Oh, by the way, here’s a wine hack
for you. For those of you that like red wine, everybody get their notepad out. The three countries that still produce wine to the old world standard are New Zealand, France and Italy. And I know we like to poke fun at the French. They aren’t the best allies at times, but folks, trust me. If you drink wine from those three countries, for instance, my wife is not a big red wine drinker. And I said, try a bottle of valpolicella an Italian bottle, one of these nights, this past weekend. And she said, it always gives me a headache, no headache. Also, there’s another product called Drop It that you can get on Amazon. And especially if you’re going to drink an American wine, I love Napa cabs, but they can have a lot of tannins, right. But a couple of drops of
drop it in your wine, your red wine, especially if you’re going to have more than two glasses. And the next day you will notice a dramatic decrease in your headache. So, there’s a hack that all you wine drinkers will say, gosh, I’m glad I listened to that podcast. That’s awesome.
Greg: Okay. But wait a minute. So, this was a good transition wine. With wine, we’re going to get into sleep. My understanding is, when you drink wine in the evening, it does a great job of putting you to sleep. But then at
about two in the morning, the sugar kicks in and that’s why you go to sleep okay. But you tend to wake up a couple hours later when the sugar kicks in, true.
Dave: You probably can anticipate what I’m saying. It depends on how much you drank. It depends on what kind you drank. It depends on when you drank. It depends on what you consumed it with. Here’s the bottom line: you’ve got to measure your sleep. Great transition, Greg. I was plenty, a perfect time to get into — how many of you can tell me, last night, I can pull up my data and tell you exactly how many minutes of deep sleep, REM sleep and regular sleep I got. Exactly when I went to sleep, fell asleep. Exactly when I woke up.
Exactly when I woke up to take those breaks. You’re talking about — I take typically one, sometimes two a pretty much dependent on how much I drank or if I drank. But you folks you have, so let’s move into sleep. Number one, measure your sleep. Now, if you could see, that’s not my wedding ring, this is my wedding ring. On my left hand, zoom does an exact replication. So, it looks like my right hand. This is called an aura ring. So, there are two devices that I recommend. Once again, no compensation. It’s spelled O-U-R-A, the Oura
ring or the Whoop, W-H-O-O-P band. I think it’s two O’s. I don’t own that, but I know they are the only two devices today that include heart rate variability in what they measure, and heart rate variability is the most cutting edge measurement device barometer. If you will, of how you are, health-wise at a cellular level. So, it’s not that you can’t use the Apple Watch. It’s not that you can’t use, you know, I used to have a Fitbit Charge. They will give you some sleep data. I’m okay if you start there, but here’s what I want you to do. I want you to start to track how much deep and REM sleep you get.
Greg: Dave, I have to tell you, I heard you. You gave me this recommendation. I don’t know, year or two ago. And I went and bought one of the rings and I only wear it, I only wear it at night. It’s fabulous. Like, like when I
wake up in the morning, I immediately look at how much deep sleep, I think last night I was at 39%. So, I, 39% of my goal, I guess it was. So, I look at, I look at, I mean, in that bar chart at the bottom, I look at it, I look at it every morning. Can’t recommend that enough.
Dave: Was your, are you saying your sleep score was 39 last night?
Greg: Well, I’m going to pull it up. I’m saying, hold on. I’m going to pull it up.
Dave: All right. Let’s compare. We’re going to have contest. Here we go.
Greg: No, I lose. I lose. I lose. My no, no, no. Wait a minute. I got there. There’s everybody’s different. First of all, Mr. Patchen, first of all, everyone’s different. Second of all, my daughter, I was seven hours and 40 minutes.
Dave: Okay. That’s good.
Greg: My time was in bed was 824. It’s pathetic. My time, my total, yeah, my efficiency was 91. That’s good. My restfulness was good. My REM sleep was two hours and 18 minutes.
Dave: That’s very good.
Greg: My deep sleep was bad. That’s the one. It was only 32 minutes.
Dave: And that’s the one I have challenged with.
Greg: Me too!
Dave: Yeah. So last night, I was at eight hours, 34, total, 228 REM, 121 deep. So last night was a very good night. I can have nights where I don’t do as well on deep. Alcohol. Really folks, is why you got to start to measure
sleep. One of the things is it’s hard when you love, and I love red wine. So, it’s, it’s hard to not— Or if youlike a martini or, you know, I like a bourbon
here and there, but it’s easier to stop that or to lessen it, mitigate
it. If you start to see if you’re measuring something, you’re just have more of a drive to try and take actions. So—
Greg: But in addition to all that, isn’t it important also to have the same—
Dave: Yeah. The circadian rhythm.
Greg: Yeah. So, like, I go to, I mean, last night I went to bed at 8:58 sort of pathetic. But I go to bed by nine, most nights, I got up at 522. So, I, but I’m within that. I mean that tonight I’ll go to bed at nine plus or minus five
minutes and I’ll get up around the same time. And there’s something to that, correct?
Dave: It’s huge. Yes. Very much so. So, so let’s get into my favorite sleep packs. First off, same time and the brain will help you with that. The ring, my ring tells me my ideal bedtime is between 8:45 and 9:45 PM. And it will
track that on an ongoing basis. So, it tells you when to go to bed, dark room, cold room. Now here’s the thing.
Greg: And when you say dark, you mean dark.
Dave: I mean, no light whatsoever. If you’ve got to wear that, one of those masks around your eyes, wear it. If you do that, you’ll see you actually get more deep sleep. So, let me just ramble through these and people can rewind it and listen again. So dark room, cold room. Now the cold room’s really important. The ideal sleep temperatures, 65 to 67 degrees in Florida. We can’t crank the AC down to 65 in the summer. It’s 90 degrees down here sometimes in the summer. So that doesn’t work. So, there’s a product I highly recommended. It’s funny. My wife didn’t want to get this product, but now all of her tennis friends, all of her girlfriends now own this product called a ChiliPad. ChiliPad has another product called the OOLER. And what these products do is, each of you, husband and wife, will have a pod. We have a king-sized bed and my pod is set to 64 degrees. Nancy says, actually, she’s has it set to 62? Cause she wears pajamas at night. I don’t. And it circulates cold water under you. It’s like a mattress pad that you sleep on, but it circulates cold water. Now you’ll see folks. My deep sleep went up 20% on a 90-day comparative side-by-side basis after I got the ChiliPad. So worth looking into once again, I don’t get, I don’t, I don’t get any money for you buying it. I’m just telling you if you, especially women that are going through the, you know, we’re mid-fifties, Nancy and I are 56 and she was going through the life change. The last couple of years, it’s been a game changer for her sleep. As we measure of sleep. So, dark room, cold room, another one, really important for REM sleep, folks, is blue light. You got to get the blue light out of your life. And blue light comes from the screens that we look at and they’re beautiful screens, your iPad, your iPhone, your smartphone, your TV. Most of these devices either have blue light minimizing built-in tools that you can adjust. Like people look at my phone, they say, it always looks pink. People say, do you want your phone to look like that? I do. I want to block blue light all the time. The resources I’m going to share. I have a pair of amber shades that I put on my glasses at night when I watch television that tells my body, it eliminates the blue light. The blue light comes from fluorescent lights as well. Almost all the lighting we have, LED lighting, which is the rage in some of the new homes some of you just built, is terrible for your circadian rhythm. So, after the sun goes down, and that’s later in the summer, I get that. That can be nine o’clock in the summer. But during the wintertime, after five, six o’clock when you start to want to relax, folks, I want you putting some form of blue light blocking in place. What that’s going to do, Greg, is allow you to get more deep sleep. And here’s, what’s important about deep and REM sleep folks: you get deep sleep the first couple of hours you’re in bed. And these are by the way, these aren’t just for Dave, they’re for these are general rules about sleep that apply to 90-some percent of the population. But when you start to measure your sleep, you’re going to see your deep sleep early and your REM sleep late. So. Greg, one comment, if I may, on what you said about your sleep. Nine to five is okay. Especially if you’re falling asleep, when you go to bed at nine, I can live with that. Okay. What, here’s what happens though, with a lot of people, and by the way we said, we were going to share some personal thing. I lost my mom to Alzheimer’s in September of 2018. And she would fall into this category where you wake up at 4 or 2:30 or 3 in the morning and you never go back to sleep. Here’s what happens. And I wish you guys could see my screen. You’ll see. I wake up. Sometimes I’m actually awake, so are many of you, for an hour, hour and a half, in the middle of the night. I’ve trained myself to meditate. I’ve trained myself to turn my mind off and I
go back to sleep. Here’s what happens when you go back to sleep, you get almost pure REM sleep. Those last, that last hour or two. So, Greg, if you pick a day that you go, you go back to sleep or sleep a little later, you’re going to see that it’s almost entirely REM sleep. I’m going to see if I can look at last night and look at the big, you see the white, that’s when I was awake. But look what happened at the very end of the night. You see that solid light blue line for an hour. I told you I got two hours and 21 minutes of REM sleep. An hour of that was the last hour that I helped myself go back to sleep. So, point, bottom line, do not get up in the middle of the night and
play with your smartphones, folks. Turn on the TV, teach yourself breathing techniques, which has stuff— if the people like this call this is the podcast Greg, and they want me to come back, and they have stuff they
want me to cover it’s, I’m happy to go deeper on any of these topics on how to—
Greg: Yeah. So, I appreciate you saying that. So, if people are interested, we’re going to go over some more stuff, but if people are interested, you know, we’d love to give Dave a reason to come back and visit his family. So,
we would be happy to do, you know, a meeting in Pittsburgh where we share some more information—.
Dave: Yeah or do a live event.
Greg: We can do some more Q and— yeah, live event where we do more Q&A.
Dave: Yeah, exactly. We’d love to do that. Great excuse to come home.
Greg: Yep. This isn’t just about how I want to feel rested. The next day sleep is really important, right? I mean, you know, you, and I’ve talked about this
before some of the benefits of sleep, you mentioned them all with Alzheimer’s, you know, just, you want to talk about that a little bit?
Dave: Yeah. It’s, it’s everything. Sleep and especially deep sleep REMs, really important. REM’s really strong for brain health and cognitive function. And then deep sleep is really helpful for a, from a muscular recovery standpoint, if you work out, it’s really important, but also testosterone and hormone balancing, that’s what is really important about deep sleep. And what happens is people are taking a lot of drugs. I’m not going to have time to get into things like statins. And that’s why I’m not a doctor. You have to take your statins. If you’ve got a blood pressure issues and cholesterol issues, I get that. But those drugs impact your sleep and specifically your deep sleep, why your testosterone goes down and becomes a vicious cycle. So, try some of
these things. I have a magnesium product that I like. Magnesium is the sleep mineral. It’s worth trying. That’ll also help you get a deep, into deep sleep as well. But yes, it turns out that breathing is the first thing that if
it’s stopped you die, but actually sleep will lack of sleep will kill you before even lack of water will kill you. That’s how important not only sleeping is, but the quality of your sleep is. So, the more you can learn about it through measurement, the better you’re going to be able to start to have it.
Greg: Thank you. So, so measure it. And there’s some things you can do to improve it, but you don’t know if you’re going to be improving it until you know where you’re starting. So and I’ll tell you at first, you know, when you
first get the ring and you start, it’s frustrating because, you know, you just, you just realize when I look at it, it was frustrating, realized I didn’t have much REM. I didn’t have much deep sleep. I was up, I saw, I saw Dave knows what I mean, but there’s a bunch of white on my phone in the morning. But if you don’t know where you are, it’s hard to improve. So, speaking of sleep and here’s another transition, a group of us in Pittsburgh
have been working of getting together on mental health. Mental health is an epidemic. I think COVID clearly has brought it to the forefront and has potentially, you know, even made a difficult situation, more difficult.
So, a group of us were at Western Psych in Pittsburgh and we were talking to them and we said, okay, so, you know, what are some of the things we can be doing? And, and I’ll never forget the physician looked and said, you know, one of the things we’re realizing how important sleep is to mental health and I’m like sleep, we’re talking about sleep. So, but there’s a lot of other advancements that have happened. In fact, one of the physicians at Western Psych at Pitt said to me, one of the challenge, one of the challenges is there’s there’s new treatments, but they’re not, he was so frustrated, that the treatments are not getting to the patient. It’s just not getting there. So, do you want to talk about mental health in general and some of the advancements that have happened?
Dave: Yeah. So happy to. And happy to and sad to. And I’ll start off by you know, sharing the, the tough thing, the elephant in the room, as it relates to mental health. Everybody out there and I, I want to make sure I don’t get
emotional here. Nancy and I lost our 21-year-old son, Ben to suicide October 5th of 2019. So, this is a topic that when you go through that, is near and dear to your heart. And Ben’s one case. We have, as Greg said, unfortunately, hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of people suffering now. COVID’s exasperated some of that. The things I’m talking about, folks, gut health and sleep, diet, alcohol — are all big drivers. Ben was a hockey player. There were concussions involved. He was never a good sleeper. So, his brain
wasn’t repairing, you know, nicotine was involved. He was smoking marijuana. I mean, these kids today, folks. And then the other one, what did I say earlier?
These kids — and some of you adults, you’re on your phones all the time! Here’s the thing, Greg. I was thinking about this in anticipation of our time. What if you decided you were going to develop a product for all of humanity that basically would ruin their posture, ruined their neck, ruin their shoulders, ruined their hands, ruined their eyes, impact their sleep, and you’d charge them a hundred bucks a month to subscribe. How many of those you think he could sell? Well, folks, that’s a smartphone! You want to talk about a pandemic. That’s a pandemic, and young people, one of the times our son moved out of the house was me waking up, I told you I wake up in the middle of the night, at three in the morning and coming back to our media room and
seeing him gaming at three in the morning. Okay. All of these things contribute to brain health. And what happens with mental health is the brain is not functioning properly. And so, what I would share — if I knew, then what I know today, I love, there’s a book called ‘The End of Mental Illness’ by Daniel Amen, A-M-E-N. He, in my opinion, this is Dave’s opinion, so
check it out. If you have a loved one that’s suffering and they haven’t had a SPECT scan by a Amen-trained physician, I would highly recommend that be part of your protocol for diagnosing and suggesting treatments. The other thing I would ask your mental health practitioner, if you are down the road on this, with loved ones that I was not able to do, but I would do today is, they’re making, I know it’s going to sound crazy for some of you that haven’t read about this, but many of you have, they’re making great inroads with psychedelic drugs and mental illness. It’s hard to say mental illness once you read Daniel Amen’s book, by the way, because he, he makes it clear
that that is, it’s a slanderous description of the affliction. And what I mean by that, what he means by that is, you know, if you have a problem with an organ, they go in and they look at the organ, they do an MRI. They do a, you know, they do an x-ray. They they’re always checking it. And then trying to treat that organ with mental health, what you’re going to learn, the more you dig into it is the protocols for diagnosis haven’t really changed in the history of the study of mental health. And so, getting a look at the brain and trying to figure out exactly what’s wrong based on what’s going on with the blood flow in the brain, goes a long way toward knowing how to treat it. But back to the psychedelics, low-dose LSD, there’s a drug called ketamine that
they’re having great results with. What’s another one that— MDMA so know that there are a lot of alternative treatments and what they’re able to do, so many times trauma is behind, and there was some traumatic, unfortunately experiences in my son’s life when he was a little boy. And that stuff that he couldn’t shake even through multiple therapists. And what trained, I want to be very clear, what highly trained therapists and doctors with the psychedelics are starting to represent they can do — you see me measuring my words — is that they can help almost erase some of the, some of the past events in the person’s mind that are causing that PTSD, if you will. So
please check this stuff out. Folks, your loved one is still alive. Mine’s not. I’m just sharing with you from my
heart. What I know is showing progress and promise today. And I would just highly encourage you to check it
Greg: Dave, I’m truly sorry for your loss. I know everybody feels it when you said it on the phone, our heart went out to you and sorry for your loss. I will tell you, you are a, you’re an inspiration seeing the passion that you have to try to change the end of other people’s story. And hearing you tell the story. I can just, I mean, you and I can see each other. People can hear it in your voice, how you really are working to bend the curve on mental
health. And I agree with you, it’s a, there’s, there’s a stigma involved. You know, people say like that you commit suicide. No, you didn’t commit, right. It’s a health issue. And you know, they call it behavioral health. And I heard you say, it’s, it’s why not, why don’t we call it mental wellness? We are blessed in Pittsburgh to have wonderful resources. It’s a little bit fragmented and it’s hard to it’s hard to know where everything is, the group that we’re working with. One of the, one of the things we thought
about creating (and we’ll see if we get it done, we’re trying to figure out, you know, what’s the biggest impact we can make) is an app where if, you know, if you have a loved one, that’s going through an acute moment, it’s actually hard to know where to go. The resources are there, you just, they’re just not organized. And so, in Pittsburgh, one of the things we’re thinking about is an app. But the good news is, there is help on the way, and with people like you, with education, and you know, a lot of the research that’s being done,
someone that is suffering a mental health illness today, you don’t have to live with this forever. They don’t say that about any other illness. It’s incredible to me that, you know, there’s always hope that there’s a cure
or a treatment that can make things better. And they’re coming.
Dave: No, and unfortunately the drugs that they do prescribe, you know, that, that certainly seemed, seemed to, in fact, there might be a practitioner listening to it. Hey I’m just telling you what happened that that probably, it
looks like it exacerbated his specific case and situation. So that that’s, some of the best concussion work in the world is done out of Pittsburgh. You guys have really great resources there around brain health as a whole. So, tap into them, ask the questions. What are you doing with psychedelic drugs? They will know, trust me. They’re not going to look at you sideways. They’re going to be able to, hopefully they’re going to say, I’m glad you, I’m glad you brought that up. Here’s where we are in our approach with those types of
drugs. Okay. And same with the SPECT scan. I’m sure your concussion labs already have a tool like that, but it should be used for cases beyond
concussion, and stay close to the people. You know, it was so, every situation is unique and different. And you know, our son — it is an illness. They do get sick and they’re not their brain isn’t working. And they’re not thinking rationally and logically. And so, you can’t listen to them is the last thing I’d share with everybody. You gotta, sometimes with your kid, you just got to trust your own gut, and you gotta, you gotta do what you gotta do. And we were scheduled to go out there the weekend before it happened. And the therapist told us to stay away. And, but the reason, I don’t want to pick on therapists, folks. The reason the therapist told us to stay away was because Ben was saying that I was going to kill him. And, you know, that therapists have to protect their patients. We should have just gone. Okay. We should have just gone. And I share that with you, because maybe you or someone, you know, is struggling with this, and you have an instinct. Go give it a shot. Don’t think that we’re overly second guessing. There’s reasons we didn’t go. We listened to the therapist, but I have an opportunity through my pedestal here as, as a public speaker for Raymond James to share my experiences and hope somehow, some way they can help you. And say a prayer, say a prayer for my son, please. It does, it does mean a lot to me. It means a lot to us. And I’m praying for your loved ones that are suffering through this. Thank you. Sorry, Greg. I’m okay.
Greg: Thank you so much. And we certainly will say a prayer for your loss and just thank you. You make a difference in other people’s lives and we just really appreciate it. And, you know, when you first introduce things like, you know, the immune system and sleep and diet and mental health, they sound like bullet points, but they’re bigger than that. They’re literally things that’ll change people’s lives and they’ll change outcomes and they’ll change the happiness in our lives. And I can tell you I’ve had a lot of podcasts and
conversations, but when I speak with you, it’s moving, and I just can’t thank you enough for the difference you make in people’s lives. And our prayers are promised. So, we appreciate—
Dave: Thank you. Thank you. I appreciate that. And what you’re talking about, as we wrap up is, what’s now referred to as ‘health span.’ Everybody knows. I hear some of you on the call saying, I don’t want to live to be fill-in-the-blank, a hundred, 120. It’s not the point. I know what everyone wants. What everyone wants is to have as many years where we feel great as possible. And that’s what we talked about today is going to help you. You work on your sleep, you work on your gut, you work on your diet and you help those connect those with resources from a mental health standpoint, you’re going to feel better. And you’re going to have a longer health span, which is really at the end of the day all any of us can ask for. So, hope everybody got something
out of this. I’ll share some resources with Greg and team that he can share and anything that you have interested, interest as Greg said, in me doing this again, we’ll talk about an opportunity to try and do that. I’d love to do it in person.
Greg: Dave, we appreciate you. You’re a game changer. God bless.
Dave: Thanks, Greg. Same to you.
Greg: Thanks for listening. If you’d like to hear other subject matters that may be of interest to you. Please check us out at ConfluenceFP.com/podcasts.“Imagine That” Confluence Financial Partners.
This session was recorded on February 17, 2021.
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