Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy with Christopher Shade: Rational Wellness Podcast 358

Dr. Christopher Shade discusses Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy with Dr. Ben Weitz.

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Podcast Highlights

*Use the discount code weitz15 for 15% off Quicksilver products.

2:02  Quicksilver Scientific offers topical estrogens and progesterone over the counter because the FDA allows topical cosmetics to include hormones below a certain concentration, including an estadiol, estriol, biest, progesterone, DHEA, and a product called DHEA Plus female replacement serum that includes DHEA, pregnenolone, DIM and chrysin to hold back estrogen formation and increase estrogen breakdown, and then some adaptogens, including ginseng, maca, and dong quai.

3:51  Most transdermal cream formulations of hormones are not well absorbed, which is why some Functional Medicine doctors have been using saliva testing to measure hormones. But this may not be because serum or urine are not good at detecting these hormones, but that they simply don’t get absorbed through the skin. When you look at these hormone creams under a microscope, you see big chunks of the hormone that’s never been dissolved, while if you examine the Quicksilver topical hormones, they are dissolved into the oil phase in the center of the emulsion droplets. And then when you put those on, they go all the way through and you can pick them up in the serum. But Dr. Shade pointed out that when you measure estrogen in serum with women using topical hormones, you see levels go up and then down and then up and down as their bodies pull the estrogen into various compartments in the body.  He has found that urine is therefore the best way to measure hormones, such as through a DUTCH test, since you can pick up the fluctuations in hormone levels that occur over the course of the day.

7:50  DHEA.  If you look at androgens in women, like DHEA and testosterone, then these are picked up really well in serum. Quicksilver offers a DHEA product for women with 100 mg of DHEA, which is usually considered a high level for a woman to take, but Chris points out that since they use a nanoparticle delivery system, you’re bypassing the liver and you get way less incidence of the hair growth, hair loss, or acne that women sometimes get from high levels of androgens.  Interestingly, while DHEA converts into testosterone in women, in men it doesn’t convert into testosterone.



Dr. Christopher Shade is the founder and CEO of Quicksilver Scientific, which has revolutionized the nutritional supplement industry with their innovative nanoparticles and liposomal delivery system, their heavy metal testing, and their detoxification protocols that have become the standard for many for reducing heavy metals and mycotoxins.  The website for Quicksilver Scientific is QuicksilverScientific.com.

Dr. Ben Weitz is available for Functional Nutrition consultations specializing in Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders like IBS/SIBO and Reflux and also Cardiometabolic Risk Factors like elevated lipids, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure.  Dr. Weitz has also successfully helped many patients with managing their weight and improving their athletic performance, as well as sports chiropractic work by calling his Santa Monica office 310-395-3111.



Podcast Transcript

Dr. Weitz:            Hey, this is Dr. Ben Weitz, host of the Rational Wellness Podcast. I talk to the leading health and nutrition experts and researchers in the field to bring you the latest in cutting edge health information. Subscribe to the Rational Wellness Podcast for weekly updates. And to learn more, check out my website, drweitz.com. Thanks for joining me and let’s jump into the podcast.

                                Hello, Rational Wellness Podcasters. Today, I’m excited to have another interview with Dr. Chris Shade, and today we’re going to be speaking about hormones and hormone receptors. It’s really interesting to think about hormones, and we often don’t think about hormone receptors. We know that there’s lots of potential benefits of taking hormones if they’re needed.  However, if those hormones can’t attach to hormone receptors and those hormone receptors aren’t functioning optimally, then those hormones can’t do the things that they’re supposed to be doing. We’re not going to get the full benefit out of them. Dr. Chris Shade is the founder and CEO of Quicksilver Scientific, which has revolutionized the nutritional supplement industry with their innovative nanoparticles and liposomal delivery system.  Their heavy metal testing and their detoxification protocols have become the standard for many in the functional medicine world for reducing heavy metals, mycotoxins, and environmental toxins. Quicksilver has now added a slate of hormone products as well, as their nutraceutical line of products has become broader and broader. Chris, thank you so much for joining me again.

Dr. Shade:           I’m happy to be here, Ben.

Dr. Weitz:            This is great. I think this is our fifth interview, and I love our discussions because you’re such a deep thinker, and I love diving deep into physiology and science. I was actually surprised to see what that Quicksilver was offering a topical estrogen product, because I assumed that it would require a prescription. So tell me about that.

Dr. Shade:           So does everybody. Lo and behold, I started seeing some estrogen creams and progesterone creams out there. We could go into a Vitamin Cottage and get it. And so I asked my FDA lawyer like, “What’s going on with all this?” And turns out, topical cosmetic laws allow hormones up to a certain concentration. We make a really good nanoserum. And at those concentrations, this stuff works. It goes in and you get circulation.  And it’s able to go in and do bioidentical hormone replacement for you. So we did a estradiol, estriol, biest, and progesterone, and then we have for all the androgens, we have something called DHEA Plus female replacement serum, and that’s DHEA, pregnenolone, with DIM and chrysin to hold back estrogen formation and increase estrogen breakdown, and then some adaptogens, ginseng, maca, and dong quai. And so that together you totally have women covered.

Dr. Weitz:            It’s fascinating. So the dosage, if it’s below a certain amount of estrogen, that it’s allowed?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, yeah. Some of these creams that have… I think everything’s below 2%. And there’s some creams out there have like four or 8%, and so those have gone past those laws, but all of ours are in the legal range for hormones in topicals.

Dr. Weitz:            Now, one of the interesting things is it’s common in the functional medicine world to feel that serum testing doesn’t really pick up transdermal estrogen. So it’s become common to use saliva testing with the idea that saliva testing is better at picking up transdermal hormones. But I spoke to Mark Newman of DUTCH Testing and he did some research. His research shows that the compounded transdermal estrogen products are just not well absorbed.  And the fact that people are not picking them up on serum is not because serum is not a good way to test for it, because they’re not really getting absorbed. So it’s interesting that I’ve heard you talk about these creams and how these products, it’s an issue with getting them absorbed. He found that the FDA approved patch had more consistent results upon testing. But maybe it’s just a case that these typical transdermal creams, compounded creams are just not well absorbed.

Dr. Shade:           Yeah. I mean, that’s really what it is. When you look at what a cream is, in fact, the best way to do it, and I have some pictures of this, is to look in the microscope. I have this little swanky microscope here for blood analysis. And you put a cream on there and you see all these chunks in there. You see the bubbles of the emulsion, and then you see these big crude chunks of all this hormone that’s never been dissolved in there. And that’s why they’re big on micronized because the smaller they grind it up, little bits of hormone dissolve into the cream off the edges of these little chunks.  But most of it is staying on the skin is these chunks. Now, what does go in gets into lymphatic circulation and shows up in the saliva and you can get a number there. Now, if you put ours, you put it under the microscope, it’s just totally transparent because the light microscope can’t pick up the emulsion and there’s no particles of hormone left. They’ve all been dissolved into the oil phase in the center of the emulsion droplets. And then when you put those on, they go all the way through and you can pick them up in the serum.

                                It’s just a little funny in the serum. When we do the uptake studies with women, it’ll go up, it’ll go down, it’ll go up, it’ll go down. If you want a real good one, you use me or a guy and you see estradiol go up and flatten out and then eventually come down. But women are pulling it into all these compartments. So what we found is the best thing for looking at is like a DUTCH or RINE is the predecessor to DUTCH, and you get that 24 hour and it’s like bringing together, integrating that whole 24 hour period and you see all the hormones in there.  Most importantly, people’s symptoms go away. And when we get to talking about hormone levels versus receptor levels, you see why we do use analytical tools, but we’re not relying on them totally like, well, you have to be at this level and that makes you okay, because every person is different where they feel good and what their dosages are to make them feel good. And so actually getting them to the right dosage isn’t all that hard. You want to measure them before.  And then when they’re feeling good, get an idea for what those levels are. But levels aren’t gospel, again, as we talk more about the integration of the hormone level and the receptor level.

Dr. Weitz:            On the other hand, it’d be nice to do a test to see how well a woman’s level go up when they use your product.

Dr. Shade:           If you’re looking at the androgen side, like the DHEA and the testosterone, just do serum. Boom. I mean, the DHEA just rockets up there. It goes super physiologic. But that’s fine with DHEA. DHEA has never really shown to have a bad upper side unless people start getting some acne. It’s amazing when you do this nanoparticle delivery, you’re bypassing the liver and there’s way less incidence.  The women who are hyper prone to acne might have it, but most women don’t have any hair growth, hair loss, or acne because you’re not putting this bolus of DHEA through the gut and into the liver and making all of these androgenic metabolites. And then if you’re doing a pharmacokinetic study and you’re watching the DHEA come up in the blood, you’ll watch the testosterone in lockstep with it come up. So you’ll be super physiologic in DHEA and testosterone will be up at the high end of the reference range.

Dr. Weitz:            That’s in women, right?

Dr. Shade:           In women, in women, yeah, because men don’t turn DHEA into testosterone. It’s like the forbidden fruit for us. I don’t know why that is, but it doesn’t happen. In fact, when you take ours, if you’re not supplementing testosterone by say injection, then your DHEA will go up and your testosterone will actually go down a little bit and then come back up because there’s so much signaling of the DHEA at the endogen receptors that you actually down regulate your testosterone production.  Now, if you’re doing injections, then DHEA will just ride up and you’ll have a real high DHEA level. But then back to the women, you’re going to figure out, do you want a half dose, full dose and just figure out where they feel best. If you get them a little too high, they get a little bit aggressive, and you just bring that down. So again, you’re working with their symptom load. So that you can watch serum. When you’re working with progesterone and estradiol, you can see it in serum, you can work serum, but it’s a little bit better in urine.

Dr. Weitz:            You brought up your DHEA product, and I was surprised to see the dosage that you have in the DHEA. Because the interesting thing about the Quicksilver products is one criticism sometimes people will make is, oh, the dosage is so low. And the answer is, well, because of the delivery system, it’s better absorbed, and that dosage will be effective. So I was surprised. Normally, when I recommend DHEA for women, we’re typically talking about 10 milligrams, and you have 100 milligrams in your product.

Dr. Shade:           And why do we do 10 milligrams? Because people get symptomatic above that. 25 and they’re getting acne, they’re getting hair growth, but it’s not really driving their testosterone up. Maybe they go from 10 to 25, like ooh, and their DHEA is running at 200. But really you want it smoking, DHEA real high. DHEA is a major metabolic thing. It’s fantastic for the brain. It’s great for libido. And so having that up in the 600 level and the testosterone in a 60 to 100, depending upon what your dosage is, people just do freaking great. They feel fantastic.

Dr. Weitz:            So the benefits of DHEA, in your opinion, the main benefits are what?

Dr. Shade:           Cardiometabolic, really strong there. So all these women that are doing weight loss and stuff, the cardiometabolic aspect is really good. Brain, it’s super good. It’s a good mitochondrial benefit. And it’s real strong on the androgen receptors alone and the testosterone that it makes. In fact, DHEA is interesting. It’ll get androgen and estrogen receptors.

Dr. Weitz:            It’s interesting. It seems like 10, 15, 20 years ago, DHEA was being touted as one of the main longevity products. And the first study that reversed epigenetic aging, the Fahy study, that included DHEA. But lately people have forgotten about it and nobody’s really sure if it really does much. I’m wondering maybe if we’re not using enough dosage.

Dr. Shade:           Not doing enough. Those low dosages just don’t move the needle. I mean, my friend Lauren Bramley is this great hormone doctor, and she talks about the personality of hormones. And she talks about DHEA dominant people. I’m a DHEA dominant people. I would run four to 500 when I was younger, just all the time, just smoking high. And those people are hyper intelligent, and they go and they do stuff. They’re action oriented. They’re funny. They’re handsome. Wait, am I just talking about myself?  They tend to be intelligent, witty, and fun and inventive people. And that’s not 100 to 200. That’s 400, 500. You’re not going to get people running at those levels with these little doses. I mean, because you see people who have really low DHEA and it’s like 40, 50, 60, and I cry when I see that. You give your 10 milligram pill and maybe they’re at 150, but they’re not going to run where we are. And that’s really I think where the game changers are. And I would like to do an epigenetic study, get the true diagnostic stuff out again, and just have women on our whole hormone system.  I mean, don’t even leave it at just DHEA. All of it at once. I swear that’ll go backward or slow the rate of aging because you get into menopause, those hormones drop off. Your age just accelerates.

Dr. Weitz:            To go back to estrogen, in terms of estradiol, estriol, some of the data seems to indicate that most of the action really comes with estradiol.

Dr. Shade:           Well, I would say no. Totally it depends what action you’re looking for.

Dr. Weitz:            Well, I know it’s common to be combined estradiol with estriol.

Dr. Shade:           With the biest, and I’ll tell you why.

Dr. Weitz:            With the biest, right?

Dr. Shade:           I think it was just never conveyed correctly how this all works, because it’s like, oh yeah, for brain, for cardiovascular, for bone, estradiol is what moves the needle. Estriol doesn’t really do anything. But for UTIs, for vaginal atrophy, pelvic floor strength, estriol does the same as estradiol. Now, why is all this? There’s two estrogen receptors, estrogen receptor alpha and estrogen receptor beta. Estrogen receptor alpha has estradiol is really strong on and estradiol does nothing on.  And that’s the one that rules brain, cardiovascular, and bone growth, and a couple of other things. It’s also the one with the breast tissue that is more proliferative or more prone to being proliferative. So it’s the one we worry about if we have gene SNPs that predispose us to breast cancer, we have a family history. If we all have these markers of it, then we’re worried about estrogen receptor alpha and estradiol’s effect with it. Now, the other one is estrogen receptor beta. Estrogen receptor beta is all through the urinary tract, the vaginal tract, the whole lower 48.

                                And it responds really well to estriol and estradiol. The first time I was introduced to it, this woman, Mary Cohen, who treats all these breast cancer cases, was like, oh, you’ve got to have estriol alone and not compounded so we can really lay on it. And all these women who are breast cancer survivors, I can lay on that and they’ll get all the benefits because it’s that incontinence, UTIs, and vaginal atrophy is vaginal dryness, it’s thinning of the vaginal walls, it’s thinning of the tissue and the vulva, and it’s just the aging of that whole area.  And they can lay on estriol. And estriol has no effect on estrogen receptor alpha. And in fact, estrogen receptor beta has some counter effects to alpha in being anti-proliferative. So the two actually balance each other out. And in the body, you make estriol in your liver from estradiol and you pee it out, and that’s how it’s hitting all those receptors. And so estriol has a great application in the whole pelvic floor dynamic. And in our system, we advise applying it vulval. And the women are like, oh my God.

                                It’s like reversing the age, reversing vaginological age. The tissues change vastly. And that’s all the tissues down there change and they just go back in age, and all the women who are doing it just freaking love it. Now, you still need estradiol or you get… Perimenopausal, we have you start estriol, and then start bringing in estradiol as you go menopausal. Because when you go to hot flashes, you need the estradiol. And again, long-term, bone, cardio, brain, you need estradiol.  But you can just get the estradiol up high enough where you’re not flashing. If you’re in serum, you want to get north of 30, in the 40 to 50 range. I know a lot of people like to keep it up with pellets and stuff 80 and 100, but I’d like to just keep that right where you need it to be and really lean on the estriol. So there’s definitely a place for both of them.

Dr. Weitz:            I know that rhubarb extract that Metagenics came out with a number of years ago that hits the beta receptor seems to have some effectiveness against hot flashes.

Dr. Shade:           Okay. That’ll be interesting. I’ll look that up.

Dr. Weitz:            That’s their Estrovera product.

Dr. Shade:           Okay, I’ll check that out. Now, look at other things that work on the hormone system. You look at the really bad things like plasticizers. All the endocrine disrupting chemicals that cause cancer, they affect estrogen receptor alpha. Then we’re worried about anything that’s a phytoestrogen. We think, oh my God, oh my God, we’re going to get cancer. But most of those things, the soy extracts, ginseng activates or… Well, ginseng increases activity of estrogen receptor beta, and all these others that are phytoestrogens act on estrogen receptor beta.  So we have to look at this. We have to throw away our fear. We got to throw away all this stuff from the Women’s Health Initiative, which was absolutely designed and interpreted wrong. What they thought was estrogen leads to an increase in all-cause mortality, it actually led to a decrease in all-cause mortality. And any person who had cancer who had estrogen before had a higher survival rate and had lower cancer rates overall. And so we got to get away from all that fear.  We still got to respect it with respect to breast tissue and uterine tissue. We got to get away from the fear and know the beta versus alpha story.

Dr. Weitz:            And you still got to avoid synthetic progestins.

Dr. Shade:           Oh, yeah, yeah.

Dr. Weitz:            And oral estrogen.

Dr. Shade:           The whole antithesis to the estradiol effect of proliferation, well, part of it is from estrogen receptor beta, but a big wad of that is from progesterone, which is antiproliferative. And so you can’t use synthetic progestins because they don’t do that at all. Now, let’s first define something, synthetic hormones versus bioidentical hormones. Absolutely bullshit statement. All bioidentical hormones are synthetic.  This whole yam derived, like you go and you get four billion yams and you’re somehow about to get some estradiol out there. There’s no god-damn estradiol in a yam. All right? This stuff called [inaudible 00:20:36] it’s a precursor to making hormones. And so all hormones start with maybe a naturally derived precursor, and then they’re synthetically created into either a bioidentical or a non-bioidentical. And so this is where we trip ourselves up with length.

Dr. Weitz:            So instead of saying synthetic versus bioidentical, we’re talking bioidentical versus non-bioidentical.

Dr. Shade:           Bingo!

Dr. Weitz:            Like conjugated equine estrogen.

Dr. Shade:           Oh, yeah, yeah. I mean, that’s one of the big ones. I mean, Premarin had some bioidentical estradiol in there, and then they had all of these equinones or something, equines. They’re horse equilines. I forget the name, but they’re horse hormones. And you don’t even have enzymes to break them down. They’re finding these horse hormones in women years after taking Premarin.  I mean, Premarin did some good things, but there was a good Stanford study where all the cognitive effects of estradiol only from bioidentical, not from Premarin. And then you get into even worse things like the diethylstilbestrol, which is a non-identical estrogen, the non-bioidentical progesterones. And why would they make those? Because you can’t patent the compounds of the hormones because they’re already naturally occurring.  So they make non-natural hormones that affect the receptors and sometimes affect the receptors more powerfully than the native hormones, but they don’t affect all the different things that the native hormones do because the native hormones will trigger this, but they’ll also bring in help from these other pathways that make it a whole balanced thing. And that was what happened with the non-bioidenticals. They nail this, but they don’t hit any of these other targets and you get this imbalanced thing that was more likely to lead you towards cancer.

Dr. Weitz:            Now, my friend Dr. Felice Gersh, she usually argues against estriol because she says number one, estriol is basically the hormone of pregnancy. It’s not something naturally occurring in decently high levels throughout a woman’s life. And number two, the real bang for the buck is with estradiol, not with estriol.

Dr. Shade:           I don’t know why she says that. I know Felice is the only one with this story out there. And then you see our story and it’s like, I mean, yeah, I could just load you with estrogen and I’ll hit all the receptors, but is that really what we want to do? And when you look at how it works, estradiol goes to the liver, turns to estriol. You pee it out. All the receptors along the urinary tract are beta receptors, and it goes in there and hits them. And then what? Think you’re off in the cave. You’re growing up in the wild, that pee’s splashing into the vaginal tissues.

                                And it’s like maybe you shouldn’t wipe so much. Maybe you’re getting some of that in there because that’s estrogen receptor beta in there too. And so there’s an obvious use of estriol because it works on beta, because it has some of these antiproliferative effects. You don’t have tons of circulating, but you have a lot going out through the urine. So I think that’s the way that it was designed in nature, and I just don’t think she’s right there. And then there’s this question about competition at the receptors.  But if you have a high affinity for a receptor like the alpha, then diol is going to get in there and out-compete triol in a second. Triol’s never going to get in there and get in the way of the diol when it’s a competition for a receptor there.

Dr. Weitz:            You were talking about environmental estrogens, and I always wonder if let’s say you’re working with a guy and he has high levels of estrogen, or maybe he’s got low levels of free testosterone. You’re trying to see if maybe environmental estrogens are playing a role. Which form of estrogen would you measure? Or is it possible to measure? The options are to measure estrone, estradiol, or estriol.

Dr. Shade:           It seems to be all diol for the guys. That’s the driver.

Dr. Weitz:            Now, what about for the environmental estrogens? Which one would those be picked up as? Or can they be measured at all?

Dr. Shade:           Oh, they won’t be picked up as estradiol. They just fit in the estradiol receptors. If you know, you’re looking for these five chemicals and you have a test for them, problem is we don’t have a lot of tests for all these things. It’s the academic places where they look at all 203 or however many chemical.

Dr. Weitz:            We usually do a urine test for environmental toxins.

Dr. Shade:           And that’s going to get some of them, but it’s not going to get all of them.

Dr. Weitz:            Right. Yeah.

Dr. Shade:           One thing to do, look at testosterone, look at estrogen. You’re looking at ratios between them with a test estrogen ratio of hopefully like 20 to 30. When you’re down at 10 to one, and that’s with the units as they’re reported, if you’re like at 10 to one, then you’re high estrogen and you’re going to be a little heavy on the mammary glands. And then 20 to 30, you should be very lean. But if you aren’t and you’re showing this estrogenicity, then that’s likely coming from some environmental estrogen.  And then as we talked about before, I think the thing that we’re missing totally… I have all these friends, these guys in their 60s, maybe early 70s, and I look at them and they’re really sarcopenic. They’re losing a lot of muscle mass. Skin’s hanging down. They’re slow. Definitely have no libido left. Some may. And I’m like, you need testosterone, buddy. There’s just no if, ands or buts about it. And they’re like, my testosterone level’s high. It’s 600, 700. When I was young and just running off my own testosterone, I was only 500, but I had low estrogen.

                                I had almost no binding globulin, and I had a lot of DHEA, and I was plenty androgenic. So those levels are high enough to do that. But here is what androgenicity is or estrogenicity is, it is the level of the hormone multiplied by the density of the receptors for the hormone. The hormone doesn’t go right in and do things. Like in a woman, it doesn’t turn the libido switch. It hits the androgen receptor. The androgen receptor then goes into the nucleus and codes for all the genes to be turned up that are responsive to the androgen receptor.

                                And then there’s these downstream things that happen. So you look at a woman and you’re going to dose her up with testosterone, try to restore her libido. Does that happen the day after you get the testosterone? No. That’s like seven to 10 days later. There’s this lag there. So the receptors are what are causing a cascade of things to make that happen. Now, you have a testosterone of 600, 700, and you’re young and you have… I’m just going to make up an arbitrary one to 10 scale.  I’ve got a eight of receptor density. So the testosterone could go in there, activate that, go to another one, activate that, go to another one, activate that. There’s a lot of targets to hit. But now you’re 65 years old and your receptor density is down to a three, and then the testosterone is just floating around looking for something to do. And it’s not activating anything and therefore you’re non-androgenic. And finally, it hits one. That’s the thing that we’re missing.  So there’s two things bringing down receptor activity. One is the absolute density, which is known to go down with time, and the other one is poisoning of the receptors by endocrine disrupting compounds.

Dr. Weitz:            Is there such a thing as receptor sensitivity? Can a receptor work better or worse?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah. We don’t have that one totally dialed in, and that might be like there’s some chemical stuck to the receptor and it doesn’t work as well. But then there’s when the chemical goes all the way inside and blocks the hormones from getting in there. So there’s a receptor, but it’s blocked and it won’t work. And we don’t know really if there’s a receptor, it’s working at 50% versus 100%. I imagine there is. But what we do know is you have less receptors.

Dr. Weitz:            Is there any way to measure…

Dr. Shade:           When you take all the testosterone out of the body, the density of the receptors goes down. Nobody has that test now. I mean, there’s ways to…

Dr. Weitz:            There’s no way to measure it?

Dr. Shade:           It’s just in academic labs right now. So we know those go down with time. And then we know they also get poisoned by other chemicals. So you can go in and detoxify them. Back to detox again. Any subject we bring in, we can go back to detox. And so you do PushCatch Liver Detox. Maybe add a little more DIMs and glutathione and roll them on that for a while and you’re going to move these plastics and pesticides and herbicides or atrazine, get those things out. But then what if you all clean but you’re only left with a couple of receptors?  You’re at like a two or three? How do you get those up? And turns out, adaptogens. There’s great data on adaptogens increasing density of the hormone receptors. Now, I always like to say, let’s bring ourselves back. I’m an emperor, emperor so back in China 2,000 years ago, and I’m getting old and they want to keep me virile and keep me up at heart and keep my muscle mass on and have me be an emperor of the world. And they don’t have injectable testosterone cypionate.

                                And so what do they do? So you’re eating testicle and tiger penis and deer penis. You’re eating, because those all have testosterone in them. And then you’re eating the deer antler tips, which have growth hormone or IGF-I at least in them, which are growth hormone stimulator. So you’re bringing up hormones that way, and then they’re giving you shit tons of the best ginseng. And those ginsenosides have the same steroid backbone as the hormones. So they work in with the receptors in some way.  And astragalus, ashwagandha with [inaudible 00:31:27] I forget the name of the plant, but all those, it’s beautiful. They all have a steroid hormone backbone and they go in and they massage those receptors and make them work better apparently. That one, we don’t know quite how that works, but they definitely get more density, more replication of the receptors, and then you get more hormone activity.

Dr. Weitz:            I saw some webinar you did, and you were talking about some of the heavy metals, and you mentioned how nickel was one of the heavy metals sets. Seems to be a big player in some of this estrogenic stuff and that kind of interest.

Dr. Shade:           At low levels they’re blocking receptor activity, and at high levels they’re activating receptor activity. So yeah, nickel is a metalloestrogen. Cadmium is a metalloestrogen. It screws the receptors bad, because we know cadmium is probably the biggest cancer causer in testicles and ovarian. It’s probably mostly ovarian, but it could be cervical cancer as well.

Dr. Weitz:            I think nickel is part of steel, right? And here we are avoiding bisphenol A, so we’re using steel water bottles and we may be getting nickel toxicity.

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, yeah. I remember a couple of years ago, I had my girlfriend, I was like… Polydipsia. She was drinking water all day. These people in Colorado are water junkies. And I’m like, screw that stainless, man. This is no good if you’re just after it all the time.

Dr. Weitz:            Does the nickel come out of stainless steel?

Dr. Shade:           And she’s been on glass for three years.

Dr. Weitz:            Does nickel come out of stainless steel?

Dr. Shade:           A little bit of it does.

Dr. Weitz:            Yeah.

Dr. Shade:           Not a ton, but a little’s coming out. The more you put acids in there, the more of it comes out.

Dr. Weitz:            A bummer is every time I try to use one of these glass water bottles and I take it to the gym, I end up breaking it.

Dr. Shade:           Oh yeah, I know. They got ones that are covered in rubber and stuff.

Dr. Weitz:            I know. They still break easy.

Dr. Shade:           Maybe at the gym you bring your steel. Just glass for the rest of your day.

Dr. Weitz:            So we have no way to tell if we were having fewer hormone receptors.

Dr. Shade:           Nor if they’re poisoned.

Dr. Weitz:            Right.

Dr. Shade:           Except by saying your levels are high and you got jack. So let’s bring those up and let’s jam your levels up too. Some of these guys, I would put their test levels up to 1,200 to 1,400 and just saturate them with high quality adaptogens.

Dr. Weitz:            What are your favorite adaptogens for that purpose?

Dr. Shade:           I think ginseng is probably my fave, but then I always love blending all these other things in with them.

Dr. Weitz:            I think maca is a pretty powerful one.

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, maca is a great one. We don’t understand those compounds as well, but they have great cultural use. You’ve got scientific use, so you’ve got cultural use, and so you could do both. We put the maca in that DHEA. But for the guys, ginseng, astragalus, He Shou Wu, ashwagandha, those are my favorite. But for male regeneration, ginseng is at the top. In Chinese medicine, if you’re young, they’d give you astragalus and they’d say that would build your wei chi or nai chi wei, the outside energy.  Make you more resistant to disease, make you stronger on the outside, because you’re strong on the inside, young. When you get old, you get weak on the inside and the outside, so they give you ginseng to bring you up from the inside and then they’ll give you astragalus for the shield on the outside.

Dr. Weitz:            So when it comes to female hormones, the progesterone you have available is also a topical?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, it’s a topical.

Dr. Weitz:            So it’s pretty common to use oral progesterone in functional medicine world, because it seems like the oral is more effective than the topical.

Dr. Shade:           Well, it’s more effective than the topicals that are the creams with the micronized stuff in there.

Dr. Weitz:            I see.

Dr. Shade:           We’re able to get everything done that we need with these topicals. And so you look at an oral, oral base dose, there’s 100 milligrams. People will have maybe 200 milligrams, 9% absorption. So you’re only getting nine milligrams from 100 milligram.

Dr. Weitz:            Oh, interesting.

Dr. Shade:           From the topicals, we’re using mostly 12 to 16 milligrams a day. And we’re getting similar results even probably better when it comes to sleep. And similar when it comes to mood and anxiety, these are the things that progesterone does. It works on the GABA receptors, makes you calm, makes you happy, not irritable. It makes you sleep really well.  So we’re able to get that added 12 to 16. Occasionally, you need 20 milligrams. It works well. The only thing we’re not able to measure is endometrial thickness, and that was the measure that was made around the oral to prove that 100 milligrams is where you get endometrial thickness control, the thinning of the endometrial.

Dr. Weitz:            Right.

Dr. Shade:           Because that’s the thing, estrogen…

Dr. Weitz:            Unopposed estrogen.

Dr. Shade:           And progesterone’s clearing it back off for you. We haven’t been able to do those measurements yet. We’re seeing if somebody can do the ultrasound work on that.

Dr. Weitz:            Okay, that’s interesting. So one of your webinars I was watching, you were talking about sirtuins. I guess there’s a big controversy now about sirtuins with David Sinclair.

Dr. Shade:           …guy because he’s freaking taking away our use of NMN.

Dr. Weitz:            Yes, I know.

Dr. Shade:           Which part of the controversy?

Dr. Weitz:            Well, I guess there’s a controversy about the resveratrol.

Dr. Shade:           All right, so here’s how that all works. If you’re a sirtuin, you’ve got two openings here. For a ligand to come in. This is something that’s going to bond in to the protein and activate it. And on this side you’ve got the quintessential one, the one for NAD, NAD+, and that activates it. Then there’s another receptor that certain compounds called sirtuin-activating compounds can come in and bring it up to even higher level to super activate it. But if you don’t have any…  So if you go in with just resveratrol and you don’t have high NAD levels and you try to run it with a high resveratrol level, you’ll actually succeed in doing this by drawing NAD from other pools in the cell over to the sirtuin. Now, that can pull NAD away from PARPs that are doing gene repair, can pull it away from CD8s that are doing other types of cellular repair, and it can pull it away, most importantly, from the electron transport chain where it’s taking electrons from the citric acid cycle and bringing them over to the electron transport chain.

                                So even though sirtuin activation is supposed to give you heightened mitochondrial function and mitochondrial density, if you don’t have the NAD to support the resveratrol going in there, it’ll actually cause mitochondrial dysfunction. In fact, I had a guy in here I was interviewing yesterday that was saying, I could never reproduce what he was talking about back in grad school. And I told him this thing about NADs. He’s like, that’s why. I did a sirtuin activation study on a couple of people that were younger.  And we didn’t measure their NAD levels, but I was able to get great activation of sirtuins with a combination of resveratrol, pterostilbene, and maybe curcumin and quercetin. So we definitely did it. But that’s what I tell people, you got to watch out. When you’re low NAD and low ATP like in a weak person and you try to drive it with resveratrol, you’re going to drive them over the cliff. You bring up NAD levels first, you get that strength, and then you put in the resveratrol, and then you get the benefits.  And that’s why in those early studies it was like half of the cohort is doing great, half of the cohort is getting screwed up. They just cut all those things and stopped them.

Dr. Weitz:            What do you think about…

Dr. Shade:           And that’s when Sinclair was trying to make a drug out of resveratrol. Now he’s trying to make a drug out of NMN, and his company is the one who drove the FDA to try to take NMN away from the supplement companies. And that was a pretty shitty move.

Dr. Weitz:            But it seems like it’s still available?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, it’s still available, but Facebook and Amazon won’t let us sell it. One of our payment processors, Shopify, won’t let us sell it. It’s like, guys, this is not a law yet. This is what they said they wanted to do and it’s all under review and you’re just acting as the enforcement arm for the FDA.

Dr. Weitz:            It’s like the same thing with NHC, right?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, no, it was the same thing and it got all shunned by all the retailers and Facebook will stop you for having it. They’ll stop you advertising. But then NHC was given an exception. So we think that’s what’s going to happen with NMN. It hasn’t happened yet. There’s a lot of us throwing money into a common fund to sue those bastards.

Dr. Weitz:            Interesting. What do you think about NR versus NMN?

Dr. Shade:           They’re both really good. They’re a little bit different. They’re very similar. NR becomes NMN, which becomes NAD. Then when you’re trying to traffic the stuff cell to cell to move around your stores of NAD potential, you’re trafficking NR and NMN. They’re both good.  We’ve been working with NMN, worked through the intellectual property stuff around ChromaDex. ChromaDex had a “patent.” I’m doing big air quotes on the patent because it was a pile of freaking garbage. And finally, Elysium took him to task and went to court and the judge just shut it down and said, “This is a garbage patent.”

Dr. Weitz:            Oh, really? Why was it a garbage patent?

Dr. Shade:           It was garbage because, one, you’re trying to patent a natural molecule, which you can’t do. It should have been rejected just because of that. And then to get it in there, they started saying, well, the claim is NR in Ringer saline for injection, in this saline for injection, in coconut butter for doing a suppository, in a tablet for this, in a thing with this. And actually the junior patent attorney wrote this because juniors always write these things when they come out of university. He just came out of university.  And I know this all. My patent attorney is one of my best friends, and he wrote one of my first patents as a junior guy. And now he’s super experienced and he’s like, look at what they did. And instead of NR with this or with this or with this or with this, they put and. So really to violate the patent, you would’ve had to compound the NR with anything else that made it into eyedrops or suppositories or tablets or capsules or IV all together before you violated it. So it was just freaking garbage.   And in the supplement world, everybody’s afraid of a patent. They never have their patent attorneys read them and see whether there’s anything substantial there. So ChromaDex got away with having a monopoly on NR for years, and they sold it for a bajillion tons. And now Chinese synthetic labs will sell it to you for pretty cheap.

Dr. Weitz:            Oh, interesting.

Dr. Shade:           But NR, I’d be doing NR, but NR is less stable, and so it’s harder to work with in liposomal formulations. We’re going to get around that soon. If anybody’s selling you liposomal NR, it’s probably mostly broken down.

Dr. Weitz:            There’s so many companies out there claiming their products are liposomal.

Dr. Shade:           Oh my god, liposomes have exploded. Some is just absolute lie. It’s just like stuffing lecithin and some stuff in a capsule.

Dr. Weitz:            Well, that’s what a lot of it is, right?

Dr. Shade:           Oh yeah, it’s just freaking bullshit. Then, oh yeah, your stomach makes the liposomes. I have a million dollars worth of equipment over there that makes a liposome. So you’re telling me the stomach does the same thing they do? Eh-eh. And then others are just low grade. They’re getting cheap lecithin. They blend it up. You’ve got this milkshake looking stuff.

Dr. Weitz:            One of the issues has to do with taste. My wife has taken all this liquid stuff that comes in these little packets and it tastes good. She doesn’t like the taste of your products.

Dr. Shade:           They’re probably using symbiotic or something where it’s low grade with a bunch of syrups and flavorings. One of them had almond butter in it, so it absolutely could not have been a liposome. It was just some schmutzy blend up thing. And that’s where we get some is shit for our taste, because we taste like the compounds that are in it. I started in autism and Lyme and these guys are allergic to everything, so you couldn’t put all these synthetic flavors in.  Now I’m starting to juice them up a little bit and make them taste a little bit better. But if you want to buy elite supplements to get super good effect, just take it in there. Let that flavor get in there. It’s like the Vipak, the post digestive taste effect. I think that’s the right term for an Ayurveda, but taste is big in Chinese medicine and Ayurveda. It affects you, and it signals the body what you’re going to do. [Crosstalk 00:46:18]

Dr. Weitz:            Like the bitter herbs are so powerful because they’re affecting those taste receptors. Birth control. Most people don’t realize how potentially damaging birth control is. Maybe you can talk about how that affects hormone.

Dr. Shade:           I’m not great on the subject. I mean, I know how very damaging it is. It’s screwing up receptor density. It’s screwing up signaling, and it takes years and years to wean yourself or repair from the effects of the…

Dr. Weitz:            Right, to get your normal hormone levels to come back.

Dr. Shade:           To get all your hormones back. All this signaling has turned off all of your normal stuff. It was funny, my son was asking me yesterday about… Because he’s like 17 and he’s this wicked bodybuilder. And he said, “Oh, I had this great December. I grew all these pounds.” And I said, “You’re not taking steroids, are you?” He goes, “Well, I’ve been sneaking your testosterone, dad.” He was just kidding, because he was even scared of that. It’s one thing to be taking steroids and get deca dick and freaking lose everything, but he thought like…

Dr. Weitz:            Deca dick.

Dr. Shade:           Deca dick. It’s something called deca-durabolin. It makes you all anabolic in your ooh. But he thought if you go on test, you can never go off it. I’m like, no, you can go on and off. Just when you’re on it, your testicles going to atrophy and they’re going to come back down, but you could turn it all back on. And sometimes it’s easy to turn that stuff back on. Like test you could turn that back on. It doesn’t take long. But there’s something about the birth control that turns it off for a much longer period of time.  And this isn’t my area of expertise. I usually let Carol Peterson talk about that. So I don’t know exactly why that is, but it shuts it down for a long period of time. And you almost have to bring on bioidentical hormones first to reset the signaling and the way the cells respond, and then you got to nurture the rest of the system back up. I mean, some girls go off of it and everything’s fine. Other girls don’t.

Dr. Weitz:            It’s interesting that so many of these environmental endocrine disrupting substances all seem to be estrogenic versus androgenic.

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, versus androgenic.

Dr. Weitz:            Why do you think that is?

Dr. Shade:           I’d love to have a really savvy, oh, that’s because of this. I don’t have a savvy answer for that. I don’t know. Maybe we’re not even looking at it. The early endocrine disrupting stuff, it was making teenage boys fat and have gynecomastia. And so they would call them obesogens and they said, “Well, this must be all estrogenic.” And they did have estrogen receptor activity. But you know what? We missed all that.  Then later these papers are coming out, endocrine disrupting chemicals and cardiovascular disease. What they do is they inactivate the sirtuins, so they block sirtuin activity. And that is cardiometabolic wellness. So they’re turning on estrogen reception while they’re blocking sirtuin activities. So they have this dual sexual dimorphism problem and a cardiometabolic poisoning problem.

Dr. Weitz:            Interesting. That’s another thing we can’t measure, right, sirtuins?

Dr. Shade:           Well, I mean, you can’t go out to Labcorp and do it. We did one where we had to… It’s one of these research things. We had to isolate the peripheral white blood cells, put them on dry ice and send them to a lab that could do the assay for nuclear and cytosolic sirtuin activation. So you get total sirtuin levels and activated sirtuin levels.  We are doing this with a capsule-based liposome, like a real capsule-based, where it turns into nanoparticles in the GI. And it took about two hours. They activated it and it lasted about 24 hours. And so I’d like to repeat that with our AMPK charge and some of the NAD platinum, and I’m sure we’ll get similar results. So once you hit it, it does seem to stay activated for a while.

Dr. Weitz:            So the best way to get rid of these estrogenic substances, like these heavy metals like cadmium and nickel, are with your PushCatch system?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, yeah. You should really upgrade to the advanced PushCatch because then you got liver sauce, kidney care, phosphatidylcholine is really good for helping with this process, and glutathione in there. A lot of these things are conjugated to glutathione, and then you have the binders.   So that’s general organic endocrine disruptors. You might throw a little bit more DIM in if you want. That could help. But then if you’ve got metals, then you got to go to the pro version, Qube 2.0, and that’ll bring in the IMD Metal Binder and EDTA. And that’s a nine week, much more intensive protocol.

Dr. Weitz:            Isn’t the IMD in Ultra Binder anyway?

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, but it’s not in there real high. You got like a half a scoop in a teaspoon. When I’m titrating up in a metal detox protocol, I’ll have you get up to three scoops twice a day on top of the Ultra Binder.

Dr. Weitz:            Oh, okay. Interesting. I think those are the main things that I had to talk about. Anything else you want to mention?

Dr. Shade:           I’ll just mentioned that for all the practitioners, we have an online learning management system to understand the hormones and our hormone system. And you just have to become a Quicksilver Scientific practitioner, which means you just go get an account with us online. It doesn’t matter if you’re buying from Fullscript or some distributor. You need an account with us to get all the education. We have 30 to 40 different webinars in there.  We have a free learning management system around detoxification. And then you pay a little bit like 200 bucks for the one on hormones and it also comes with a sample box of all our different hormones. So getting in, getting educated. A lot of people want to get into treating hormones. Everybody’s afraid of it. You don’t need to be afraid. You just have to be educated.

Dr. Weitz:            Yeah, it is a little scary if your license doesn’t include prescribing.

Dr. Shade:           Yeah, yeah, exactly. And so here you learn all the ins and outs of it.

Dr. Weitz:            That’s great.

Dr. Shade:           If you’re just certified, those are licensed only products unless you do the learning. If you go through that course and finish it, then we graduate you to a licensed practitioner and then you can buy those.

Dr. Weitz:            So practitioners can go to quicksilverscientific.com.

Dr. Shade:           Yep, that’s it, and go apply for an account.

Dr. Weitz:            That’s great. Thank you so much, Chris.

Dr. Shade:           Thank you, Ben.



Dr. Weitz:            Thank you for making it all the way through this episode of the Rational Wellness Podcast. For those of you who enjoy listening to the Rational Wellness Podcast, I would appreciate it if you could go to Apple Podcasts or Spotify and give us a five-star rating and review. If you would like to work with me personally to help you improve your health, I do accept a limited number of new patients per month for a functional medicine consultation.  Some of the areas I specialize in include helping patients with specific health issues like gut problems, neurodegenerative conditions, autoimmune diseases, cardiometabolic conditions, or for an executive health screen, and to help you promote longevity and take a deeper dive into some of those factors that can lead to chronic diseases along the way. Please call my Santa Monica Weitz Sports Chiropractic and Nutrition office at 310-395-3111 and we’ll set you up for a new consultation for functional medicine. And I look forward to speaking to everybody next week.


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