In this week’s episode, Dr. Lauren Lattanza welcomes Dr. Tyna Moore, a physician trained as a Naturopath and Chiropractor who believes muscle mass is a vital sign. They discuss the benefits of strength training, as well as the consequences of not lifting weights which can lead to frailty, sickness, and immune dysfunction. Have a listen and be inspired to begin building strength today!
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Vitality Vs. Frailty: Why Muscle Mass Matters With Dr. Tyna Moore
We have an excellent guest for you who is an all-around fantastic person. I have been looking forward to having her join us so she can share some of the vast knowledge that she has to offer to all of us. We are always looking for facts outside of mainstream medicine to expand your healthspan. We help keep you young and get you to your 100-year heart. We bring you, Dr. Tyna Moore.
With decades of experience in the medical world, Dr. Tyna, ND, DC, is a leading expert in holistic regenerative medicine and resilient health. Traditionally and alternatively trained in science and medicine as both a Naturopathic Physician and Chiropractor, she brings a truly unique perspective to those wishing to build a more robust foundation in their health and well-being. She is also an author, podcast host, speaker, kettlebell devotee, mother, and animal lover.
Dr. Tyna not only trains and coaches other doctors in regenerative orthopedic therapies which she has specialized in for over a decade in clinical practice but she is a fierce advocate for health autonomy and personal responsibility, which she helps others improve through her many offerings at DrTyna.com. I highly suggest giving her a follow on social media @DrTyna. She dives deep into the research and shares the data in an understandable and applicable way to help us all become more vital and resilient.
Welcome to the show, Dr. Tyna.
Thank you so much for having me. I’m delighted to be here. I’m so excited to get to hang out with you.
I was looking forward to having you here. We could take the show in any number of directions. We have got it narrowed down to some beneficial topics that I look forward to diving into with you. Let’s get started. One topic that you and I have discussed in person and I love your approach to this is how muscle and muscle tone can be assessed in determining a person’s health and longevity.
I firmly think of muscle mass as a vital sign. It is underappreciated significantly or an almost completely ignored vital sign that most doctors don’t take into consideration when assessing a patient’s overall vitality and ability to heal. As a naturopathic doctor, I know that vitality is the key to somebody being able to turn that ship around and get down the healing path. Muscle is non-negotiable. It is difficult to assess muscle tone if you don’t know what you are looking for.
I’m a gym rat. I hang out with well-muscled people so I know it when I see it. I also know inflammation when I see it, as do you. It is a more difficult thing to extrapolate to the general audience but there are ways to check for it. We erroneously doubled down on fat mass as the big problem. If we started to focus on strength and muscle building, the fat mass part would generally take care of itself for the most part. We have ways to assess fat mass but getting to the heart of the matter and figuring out, “Is somebody well-muscled and well-toned? Do they have well-trained skeletal muscles?”
That comes through our history of asking questions. We can do a DEXA scan. That is a relatively inexpensive and non-invasive way to check but that involves X-rays. I don’t ideally want to X-ray my patients all the time. I make it simple in my practice. If somebody is not lifting weights 2 to 3 times a week consistently, they don’t have good muscle mass. My husband is a blue-collar guy. He works for a living. He physically does labor but that can go in a variety of ways.
You could be on the job site and be doing nothing physical or you could be on the job site and be like him and doing a lot of physical things. He keeps a decent amount of muscle mass but he still consistently lifts or I encourage him to anyway. It comes down to that. Are you committing to gaining strength 2 to 3 times a week at the minimum? All you need is about three times a week. If you are not, then I would put you in the frail category or heading towards frailty.
You say weightlifting. What is your opinion on increasing muscular demand? It would be hiking, walking up a hill, or bodyweight exercises. Is there a significant improvement with lifting weights?
It is the actual active resistance because while hiking is awesome, that is up for debate. Some people hike down a flat trail here in Portland or they hike up a hill or mountain, like where you live in Arizona. That is a different beast. The actual weight resistance is key. People want to start with their body weight. Wherever you can start is where you start. When I say lift heavy, people automatically assume I’m talking CrossFit. I’m not talking CrossFit or high-metabolic demand strength training. I’m talking slow and low, picking up a heavy thing and putting it down with strategy.
It is a push move, pull move, hinge move, and squat move. It is something unilateral to challenge strength and balance at the same time. It is simple and basic because in my head, I’m a chiropractor as well as a naturopathic doctor and I think biomechanically. Biomechanically, we are a hinge system. We are upright mammals that are built on a series of hinges. We were designed to pick heavy stuff up and ambulate. That is the advantage of being upright for us. Learning how to create tension and utilize that hinge system is what I’m talking about.
Maybe somebody is into their 30s or 40s in their life and they have never lifted. What is a good place to start?
In my practice, I specialize in regenerative injection therapy. I was treating people who were injured or dealing with acute or chronic pain. I have seen firsthand people listen to me. I posted something on Instagram about my typical workout. There was a bunch of people saying, “I’m going to go try that.” I was slinging big kettlebells above my head and some pretty technical moves that took me years to learn the skillset to do safely. People were like, “What is that called? I’m going to go do it.” I was like, “No. That is an awesome way to blow your disks out and destroy your shoulders. There is a myriad of issues that are waiting for you if you don’t get some direction.”
I’m a super big fan of investing in a strength and conditioning coach. You can find great trainers anywhere but in any profession, it is a dime a dozen of what their certification is. It is unfortunate that the public has to try to navigate that. I’m a big fan of finding somebody who knows what they are doing. It is a strength and conditioning coach who is familiar with training people in your age bracket. That is the key. My coaches know how to train Boomers and people my age.
It matters because anyone can train a 25-year-old, but to strategically train somebody my age and then remind me because I’m a Type A, I like to chase numbers on the barbell. I want to lift heavier and I end up hurting myself. They keep me in check by reminding me that we want to be doing this into our 80s. The whole point of this is to live well into our 80s so that if I want to go climb the Great Wall of China with ease, I can do that at whatever age I choose to. To not fall and break a hip is the kiss of death, which is the fate of many Americans and people who don’t strength-train.
You have got one foot in the grave if you are not building muscle consistently. In most cases, 99% of the time, by the time you pass the age of 30, your body is breaking down your muscle actively and marbling it with fat, especially if you are the standard American with that low-grade metabolic syndrome simmering at all times. Getting started is strategic. Hire somebody if you can. Find a group if you can’t afford one-on-one because you want eyeballs on you, making sure you are doing it right. You are learning a skillset. You want to learn it correctly.
Vitality is the key to somebody turning the ship around and getting down the healing path.
If you learn it incorrectly and you are self-taught, you are drilling in bad habits. That leads to joint degeneration. You can’t keep putting a joint through a range of motion incorrectly without hurting it eventually. That is the key. If they are not keen on hiring a coach or that is out of their price bracket, I encourage them to find some group coaching where it is small. Maybe it is 5 or 6 people so they still have eyeballs on them but they are still getting some one-on-one or some direction that is safer. If that is off-the-docket because some of us live in tyrannical states that are locked down and they closed gyms on us, there are online opportunities. There are one million ways.
If you don’t have the money or the means or you don’t know where to start, buy a pair of bands and follow some of these booty classes. Growing your glutes is the fastest way, in my opinion. This is my hypothesis. I don’t have strong literature to back this up but I have seen this clinically, as I’m sure you have. A strong set of glutes, legs, and lower body helps improve vitality, blood sugar regulation, and decrease inflammation. Those are the big muscle groups. Go after the big muscle groups. Even if you are doing some booty bands and following an influencer doing some booty exercises, squats and deadlifts safely with bands, you are way ahead of the pack.
It’s working those major muscle groups that you get the most metabolic impact. You start that fire and it keeps it stoked for longer with these larger muscles as opposed to doing a bicep curl.
I keep my arms and shoulders healthy so that I can be healthy and not injure them. I’m the woman who fixes people’s shoulders after they blow them out. I get on a plane. I usually try to get on early. I’m sitting there watching these frail deconditioned women, usually my age, trying to hoist some suitcases overhead. I’m like, “Lady, what you are doing to your shoulder.” They are deconditioned. They have no right to do that.
You can tell that they have not lifted anything heavy over their head in a number of years.
I don’t think anybody should be lifting anything overhead in an airplane. It is a repetitive injury. I ended up getting airline attendance in my clinic to get their shoulders fixed after years of helping people. Being fragile and weak is not only a good way to get hurt but it is a great way to put a load on the system at large. I know this is a little off-topic. In my opinion, as a naturopathic physician looking for a root cause, this is what starts it.
It starts with an injury that leads to them stopping moving and exercising and then the whole sequela starts. If they are middle-aged, they start to get the middle-aged middle and add that visceral fat. They are usually drinking alcohol to try to numb the pain. We are walking headlong into metabolic syndrome. They are on beta-blockers, blood pressure medications, and antidiabetic medications. If you dig back in taking your history, which I’m sure you have done, you find out like, “I hurt my shoulder when I was whatever. That was the beginning of the end of everything.”
It is a snowball effect for prolonged inflammation. It is an acute trigger. You think you are resting it or whatever but then you do a snowball effect into this massive amount of inflammation downstream. Talking about muscle and assessing that is a good way to segue into mitochondrial health. The conversation has transitioned from adrenal fatigue to mitochondrial health. It is valid so I wanted to gain your opinions on that.
I was sitting in a conference and Dr. Shallenberger is the Ozone guy, a healthy elder gentleman doctor who has been in practice forever. He said, “How do you know if a patient has adrenal fatigue?” He said, “It is because they are in your office. How do you know if a patient has mitochondrial fatigue or disruption? It is because they are in your office with adrenal fatigue.” I was like, “Yes, pretty much.”
There is a lot of talk about mitochondrial regenesis and fasting. That is always the big conversation. If we fast and do certain things, we can regenerate our mitochondria, which are the little powerhouses of our cells. I wrote a paper about mitochondria in undergrad because I was blown away that they were bacterium and symbiotic in our cells. It is on a floppy disk somewhere. Maybe it has gone so I have no idea. I wrote a paper in AP Calculus in high school about the use of the activator on vectors in chiropractic. I was like, “I was foreshadowing my future. I knew mitochondria is going to be a big deal someday.”
That is all great and good but how do we add more mitochondria? How do we create more? The only organ system that we can actively build is our muscle mass. It has functions that are critical to immune health, hormonal health, inflammation, and all kinds of things, mitigating inflammation. It is such a crucial organ system. For instance, interleukin-6 that is created out of your fat cells is pro-inflammatory as a cytokine. Interleukin-6 that is secreted out of healthy and well-trained skeletal muscle is a myokine, which is anti-inflammatory.
If you start going into sarcopenia, wasting, and frailty, that interleukin-6 turns pro-inflammatory. It is an organ that we can control. There are no other organs in our body that we can actively control its function. That is yet another reason why I say strength training is non-negotiable. If you don’t want to strength-train, you are saying that you are walking into a life of frailty, sickness, immune dysfunction, and probably a fractured hip, which is the kiss of death. You are either going to die soon after of terrible pneumonia or in the next ten years. That is the statistics generally.
You are shooting yourself in the foot for your mitochondria. If you build muscle, you build more mitochondria. You help the mitochondria. You have worked better and oxidized better and do its thing. I’m such a super fan of the idea that this is something that I have some control over and it doesn’t control me. I get to have a say in how it functions. That is why I say like, “This is a no-brainer for anybody.” It doesn’t mean getting big like The Hulk.
If we were to take every elderly patient in an old folks’ home or any assisted living and we were to put them through three days a week of regular strength training, we would see rates of dementia, death, and chronic disease. If we did this for the whole general public, can you imagine the pandemic would have ended? We wouldn’t have had one. It is something that is sorely being missed and not talked about. People want to take all the supplements, do all the fasting, and things to regenerate their mitochondria, but I’m like, “Also, you should be lifting weights.”
Do you think that it is increasing the mitochondria in your skeletal muscle? In your body, the richest deposits of mitochondria are in your heart and brain. Do you think that directly plays an impact on the function of your brain and heart, even though you are not directly increasing those numbers of mitochondria but in your body-wide, you might feel a little bit better overall?
You are directly impacting them in a roundabout way because, as you are lifting, you are putting yourself through cardiovascular work for sure. I was doing some slow, calculated lifts. I was doing eccentric slow. I was sweating and huffing. I was on the floor in a sweat angel, dumping sweat because the amount of tension I had to create for an hour with my coach was intense that I was like, “I had to lie down after I was wiped out.” I was not doing anything. To the observer, there was nothing cardiovascular going on but it was a load and my heart was pumping. That is beneficial.
I also think that we have got Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor, BDNF, being created and pumped through us when we exercise. Any kind of exercise will get you BDNF. It is a win-win. You know this because you lift. I could give you probably six different mechanisms. Being strong elicits brainpower that is unmatched. It is a superpower. People who don’t have it have no idea what I’m talking about. It is such a sixth sense that I will not do business with somebody who doesn’t strength-train. Straight up, I will not do business with somebody in my entrepreneurial life. I will not entrust my health and commit to a path with someone who doesn’t strength-train because I know they are missing a certain vital sense.
I talked about a nootropic supplement. You can create one on your own because nootropics are pretty expensive in supplement land. They are a top-tier price point. If you can create one on your own in terms of working with somebody, I can’t in good conscience come to work and not have worked out before getting here because I know that my cognitive ability, sharpness, and everything that I have to offer to this patient, podcast or whatever it might be that day is ultimately diminished.
When you need help, find somebody who knows what they’re doing.
There is a calmness of temper that comes with it, which we could use. It brings a level of patience and calm. It is funny that these meathead guys get this bad reputation. If you take the typical bodybuilder from the ’90s who has to write it out on synthetic testosterone, maybe that could be true. Everyone I know who is strong and committed to the path of strength is the calmest, most logical, sensible, kind, and compassionate person.
I joke with my coach. I’m like, “If the zombie apocalypse happens, I’m coming to this gym.” Their entire gym is full of very successful, calm middle-aged people. I’m like, “Bring it. It is very fit and strong.” I’m talking strength and conditioning. It is a little bit of body composition and bodybuilding stuff because I like to have a nice booty and hips. Also, it is about strength. It is not just about bodybuilding. These are calm people for a reason because there is a definite nootropic impact happening that is pretty unmatched.
It is not all about being aesthetically pleasing. It is about expanding your health span, feeling more vital, and being more cognitively aware of decreasing the risks of so many things. It is incredibly important.
It brings a sense of calm strength to the individual. As a woman, particularly, this is critical, especially in this world that we live in. First off, walking in the room as a strong fit individual, even though I’m pretty lean. I’m not big and intimidating by any means physically. The amount of respect it commands is unmatched. When I was skinny and frail, I did not have what I had. Now, when I walk into a room full of MDs or I’m in a big conference, people automatically garner me respect. Maybe it is because I’m a little older but even when I had long dark hair and I didn’t have my gray hairs, I wasn’t showing my age as much.
Being strong and stature changes the whole game and how people treat me when I walk into a room anywhere. It all translates into mental strength. I know I can endure difficult things because I do it three times a week. I endure something challenging. It doesn’t hurt me to work out. I love working out. People are like, “I hate going to the gym.” It is my time alone. It gives me this opportunity to challenge myself in a way I wouldn’t have and then I’m like, “I can do anything.” I won’t make a big decision until I lift heavy on my lower body. If I have a big decision, my commitment to myself is, “I will go deadlift or squat and then sleep on it. I get to make a decision in the morning.”
Some people say, “Sleep on it.” You say, “Squat.”
Squat and sleep and then see how you feel. I don’t get a lash out at people. I don’t get to have a reaction that is strong until I have at least worked it out of my body and then worked it out in my sleep.
There is this whole idea about being skinny-fat. You have mentioned body composition. How is it that obesity and frailty are interlinked and both linked to mortality?
Most people don’t realize that. If they think frail, they think of a skinny little old person who is at the end of their days. That is incorrect. There is some level of muscle mass in a person who is carrying around a lot of adipose tissue because they have to carry it around and fight gravity. They do tend to have more muscle mass than someone who is not carrying around a lot of excess adipose tissue and adipose tissue being fat cells. It’s a chicken-and-egg. As the adipose layers up, it tends to be pro-inflammatory, especially as time goes on.
The health at every size movement says, “No, it doesn’t impact your health.” Maybe when you are 25 and you know this. You look at labs and it’s like, “Their homeostasis is hanging on pretty good because they are young but give it ten years and it’s going to be a hot mess.” I try to explain to patients like, “It is like wearing around a blanket of inflammation. Plus, a layer of even more inflammatory fat that is usually situated underneath the muscle belly in the belly area and that visceral fat.”
That is like, “Do you want a heart attack? Grow some visceral fat.” That is the vicious cycle of this pro-inflammatory organ system, which is adipose. It is very pro-inflammatory. It completely dumps out your immune system and immune response to anything to the point where I wouldn’t inject people who were over a certain body fat composition because it can lead to an increased risk of infections. They wouldn’t respond to the therapy. It wasn’t ethically sound. That chronic inflammation starts to ignite this sarcopenia or muscle wasting phenomenon. We get in this vicious cycle.
The fat starts marbling into the muscle because if they are not using the muscle, it gets marbled like prime rib. If you look at a cross-section of someone’s leg, you have the female patient. I was this patient. When I was 38, I fit in the same jeans I fit in junior high. I was so proud of myself but I was a bag of bones and fat. There was no muscle. I felt like, “If I got hit by a car or fell over even, I was going to shatter into one million pieces.” Now, I feel like I have a pretty good chance of bouncing.
One drives the other. As that sarcopenia, frailty, and muscle wasting starts to get induced, we have got this metabolic syndrome picture happening. One begets the other. It is very difficult to get out of it so much so that when you start seeing people with a lot of visceral fat, diabetes, prediabetes, or truncal obesity, that apple shape, you start to see wasting in the arms and legs. That is a direct result of their blood sugar dysregulation and that chronic inflammation that is constantly brewing inside of them.
For them to get out of that is even harder. It is a real challenge to get up and over that hump to the point where you start putting muscle mass on the arms and legs again. As a patient, my big signal is when my butt starts to shrink. When my butt starts shrinking and my legs start getting skinny, I’m like, “Something is wrong.” It usually coincides with me getting a thicker midsection. That is a signal to me that my blood sugar regulation is getting off and I need to dial it back in pretty quickly.
We are circumventing the conversation of metabolic syndrome, truncal obesity, increased triglycerides, and decreased HDL. It is all of these things that are independent risk factors for mortality overall. The talk of obesity is at the forefront, which is great so that people are working away from this. You may start lifting weights later in life.
It can be a scary thing because it is like, “I hate going to the gym. I don’t want to be this person and start lifting weights.” Putting some stress on your body will ultimately make you more resilient. That is an important thing that people need to realize. You have got to start somewhere. Start where you are at. You don’t have to swing kettlebells over your head on day one.
Don’t do that. That was seven years in the making. It was scary. She was like, “I’m going to do this now.” I was like, “Are you sure that is okay?” We picked it up and put it down. Hopefully, with some strategy, that is where a good coach comes in. When patients would come in to get injected by me with a shoulder issue, hip issue, or knee issue, 9 times out of 10, it was because they were deconditioned. The joint was deconditioned. I could inject it all day. I would make the pain go away for a hot second, help to induce healing in the labor room, or whatever soft tissues were injured but it was not going to hold if there wasn’t muscle mass around it.
I would tell them, “The several thousand you were about to spend on me, why don’t you go spend it on a strength and conditioning coach, get strong and come back? We will do something in the interim to make your pain go away but it’s not going to hold unless you get that shoulder strong.” I would see them in the gym later. I would always send them to my guys because they are great. They work great with orthopedic faults and older folks. Once you are over 40, you are in the master’s category. It is people like me.
Being physically strong elicits unmatched brainpower.
They would be in there and I’m like, “How is your shoulder holding up?” I hadn’t stuck a needle in them yet and they are like, “I feel great.” It is because they needed to move the joint and get it strong. This is not rocket science. I have no idea how as human beings, we have moved so far away from basic animal behaviorism. When you see an animal injure itself, you can actively watch atrophy happen. My dog tore her ACL. All summer, she was holding her leg up. Her glutes were completely atrophied. Her other glutes started getting more robust because she was compensating. Her spine started getting funky.
When our dogs are overweight, the vet tells you, “If you don’t get your dog’s weight in check, it is going to have diabetes.” I have no idea why we, as humans, think that we are any different on this one. Personally, my goal is I want good sleep, robust health, good libido, and joint. I have had the joints in my back and hip infringe upon my sex life. I don’t want that. I want to enjoy intimacy with my husband. I want to be able to eat carbohydrates when I want and not have them completely sideline me. The only way for all of those things to happen is to be active and have good muscle mass.
I’m sure you get this too. I hear it all the time on social media, “I’m doing everything like intermittent fasting, following carnivore, doing all the things, and taking all the supplements. I can’t lose any weight.” I always ask, “Are you lifting weights?” They say, “No.” I’m like, “Why not start with the lifting weights part?” That is probably the most critical part. You can almost outlive a bad diet. You do have to dial in your inflammation through your mouth. At the end of the day, the lifting weights part starts there.
It is not about choking down 75 capsules a day and out-supplementing a bad diet. You can out-train potentially or maybe meet in the middle but you are not going to outwork ultimately a poor diet, which brings me to a question about carbohydrate versus protein. How much protein should people be considering to get a day is enough?
Ideally, if you are regularly lifting, you want to eat a gram of protein per pound of bodyweight which is a lot. If you are a much bigger human, at least the upper end is 120 or 130 grams, man or woman. Body composition changes fast when people get enough protein. I was looking in the mirror when I was changing. I was looking at my little tummy flub. I’m not getting enough protein straight up. I’m like, “I’m not going to have the abdominal area I seek. I don’t need a six-pack but I’m not going to get rid of this fluff until I get my protein intake up.” That’s pretty critical.
I’m not opposed to carbohydrates but you have to earn them. If you are not lifting a few times a week, I consider you frail. The same goes with dietary stuff. If you are not lifting weights, I don’t think you get to mow down on the standard American diet without consequence. It’s going to catch up to you. Interestingly, when I had patients come in after a decade in practice, it hit me pretty hard. If you were to come to me and say, “I have a shoulder condition,” how do you think I will respond with your suggested therapies with the injections, whether it be something fancy like stem cells or something simple like prolotherapy?
I would always say the same thing, “It depends on your muscle mass and how you eat truly.” I would get these guys in there that were drinking Mountain Dew and not eating great. They still would respond beautifully but they had great muscle mass. Muscle mass is the deciding factor there. That’s the big one. That is what I’m saying. If you are regularly lifting, you get to enjoy carbohydrates without as much concern. We still got to dial that in patient-by-patient but for the most part, it changes the whole game. If you are not lifting and you are mowing down on carbohydrates, you will have a problem at some point. You will find yourself in a prediabetic or diabetic state. It’s a matter of when.
I’m seeing a lot of cardiovascular patients. They are like, “I stopped eating red meat.” I’m like, “Don’t stop eating red meat. Don’t go vegan or vegetarian.” There are right ways to do those things but most of them are not doing it correctly. It ends up as carb-heavy. It shifts the blood sugar and many things in the wrong direction. If you can consider high-quality protein sourcing, you don’t have to stay away from protein ever. I would highly suggest that you don’t stay away from protein.
If it is not a ruminant animal, I won’t eat it at this point. For me, it comes down to the simple fact that I have like so many Americans, chronic gut issues. I have tried all the supplementing around it, through it, healing it, or whatever. The bottom line is, if you have gastrointestinal issues of any sort, extracting nutrients out of plants is hard. For me, I have decided to hit the easy button. I can extract my nutrients beautifully out of red meat and fruit. I feel great. My skin looks great. My pain goes down. My gut improves. The bloating goes away. The sleep improves.
I’m not saying it is for everyone and what to agree. I was talking to a friend who went hardcore carnivore for a month and he looks a little depleted. I’m like, “Have some fruit and honey.” I would not tell the average American to have some fruit and honey. I take most patients off of fruit in the beginning because they tend to overconsume it. Fructose can be a real issue. Without getting into a bunch of dietary stuff, I certainly don’t want to sway your clients in any way, shape, or form for your readers. I figure out ways that you can eat foods where the nutrients are easily extracted. I find that grass-fed, good-quality red meat tends to be a no-brainer on that one.
It is hard to source every single meal, especially at upwards of 130 grams of protein a day. It is hard to source that from grass-fed red meat. We do suggest in our office occasionally to use some grass-fed whey and some other things that can help fill in the gap because getting enough quality-source protein is the ultimate goal. I think of that as a healthy convenience food like a grass-fed whey protein. That is anti-inflammatory.
I do use my grass-fed whey protein every day. I’m a big fan.
There is another topic I wanted to get into with you because you are a big fan of using a sauna. There are so many endless benefits of a sauna. I wanted to have you go over that topic in general particularly on the cardiovascular system as well.
We could think about it as a scientist. I get these questions all the time, “How hot do I go? How long do I go? Do I use my infrared? Do I use this or that?” I’m such an old-school naturopathic doctor. I did a whole write-up on this that I’m going to turn into either a post, blog, or podcast episode on my podcast. To me, it is old-school hydrotherapy because I’m trying to pump blood. I’m trying to move the blood and lymph. I think of the sauna as exercise when you can’t exercise. I used it a lot through having COVID. I cannot tell you the number of times because I have had health challenges. Even with my best intentions, things start to fall apart.
I had a pretty big gut flare. I don’t know exactly what it was due to. I didn’t want to know because I knew the way out was still going to be the way out. Sauna came to my aid in a way that I can’t even explain. It moves things when you can’t move as well. That is number one. We are vasodilating and vasoconstricting. We are using cold therapy as well and then people say, “Plunge into a bucket of ice.” I’m like, “No, it is hardcore.” They say, “How long in the bucket of ice? At what temperature?” Humans are flipping weirdly. Where did common sense go?
In my head, I’m like, “Here is how I sauna.” This is how I tell patients, “Five minutes at whatever temperature you can handle and then you add a few minutes. You get to ten minutes at that same temperature. This is like strength training. When you can safely and effectively lift a weight with control for multiple reps, then you bump up your weight and heat.” Eventually, there are some days I can go in there. I will do 120 degrees for 45 minutes. That is a different technique than hitting 150 for 10 minutes. It is a different impact on my physiology and I’m doing it for different reasons. There is no right way.
Hydrotherapy is the most individualized medicine and it meets the patient where they are at. I use it that way and then I will go outside. I may jump in the tub outside and it is 35 degrees here in Oregon. I may stand beside it, put my arms, and a leg in. I may rinse it on my arms and legs to get the blood back to my core. It is hydrotherapy. This doesn’t have to be crazy. The other thing is hormesis if you want to get a little more science-y. Hormesis is the idea that you stress and rest the system. It is in the rest that you get the gains, healing, and all the vitality.
That is the same reason I lift weights and strength-train. It is to hit my central nervous system, muscular system, and then rest and refeed it. That is where I get the beautiful gains from that application. Heat therapy and cold therapy are the same things. Lastly, heat shock proteins are amazing for many things and BDNF. There are many good reasons for a sauna. I would put that in the non-negotiable category if possible. There are different saunas at different price points that you can access. At the end of the day, get hot. If you can get yourself sweating in a hot room or you can take a hot bath, ramp up the temperature and start sweating, you also are getting some of those benefits.
If you want to enjoy a quality life, get good sleep and robust health.
It is old-school naturopathic medicine. As long as you are getting hot, we are always taught to finish cold. I was hot so I’m going to take a shower. I’m going to finish that shower cold. Here, we have got scalding hot summers so you will walk outside. I had a patient who was too great. She was like, “After I dropped my kids off, I turned off my car for a little bit. I sit outside and turn on the car. There you go.” In the winter, our pools get cold. You do a little cold plunge in the pool.
There are so many options. I like that you say moving when you can’t because you get your heart rate up. You are still getting all the benefits of lymphatic movement, blood flow, and endothelial improvement. The endothelial is inside the lining of the blood vessels which is critical in increasing nitric oxide, blood pressure regulation, and preventing plaque deposits. You get so much endothelial benefit from a sauna. It becomes a foundational piece of cardiovascular care.
My husband has high blood pressure, which I have corrected through the two years he has been with me. We didn’t do much. He came around to my way and it went away. He was so convinced that it was a life sentence because it was in the family. It is pretty hardcore cardiovascular stuff. I was like, “I love you and I would like to keep you here.” I got a sauna and used it. I made myself a commitment to 30 days of a sauna to see what would happen. The results were phenomenal.
I lost a ton of not weight but puff. I had that middle-aged hypothyroid. I could not get on top of it puff. Applying hormones, therapies and pills were not working. A flip needed to be switched and a sauna for 30 days did that. He didn’t go in there once during the 30 days. Finally, I was like, “This is going to give you at least 10 to 20 years on your heart and a much better quality of life.” How I convinced him, I was like, “If your vessels are screwed up, your penis is going to be screwed up. If your vessels are messed up, you are going to end up with erectile dysfunction.”
If a male patient comes in and has erectile dysfunction regardless of age, I’m like, “Something is wrong with your cardiovascular system.” If they are young, something else is going on. If they are my age, it’s like, “We have got to work on your cardiovascular system.” That was what got him in there. The impact of sweating has been phenomenal. His blood pressure boomed right down into a nice normal range. It is easy and doesn’t take a lot of effort. Everybody loves it. Sweating feels great. You feel like a superhuman when you come out.
On that note of endothelium, it is non-negotiable because whether you end up getting COVID, which everybody will because Omicron is going to impact everybody, the therapeutic for that has been shown not working or you choose to get vaccinated. Either way, your body is going to get flooded with spike proteins. Spike proteins damage the endothelium. It is a known fact. Why not get your heart ready in every way you can?
That is why we see so much of this myocarditis, palpitations, and everything that is presenting after via infection and vaccination. You can prep yourself for this. That is what we have been saying the whole time. Preparation is the best cure. You have got to be ready. We know that it is coming.
We know who it hits preferentially. It is preferentially selecting for a group of people. We know our poorest outcomes. Get ready, get resilient, and get your ducks in a line. To anybody who is on the fence, I will say this and this is the tough love. It is not negotiable. Do you want to live or not? If it is not this, it is going to be something else. It is all of the things that you and I are talking about like 101 how to not die of anything ever. I want a healthy and happy life. I don’t want to be crippled in a chair or walker or spend 20 or 30 years being maintained by allopathic medicine in a subhuman state. That is not the future I want.
It sounds so cliché but age is truly a number. You can be 75 or 80, feel excellent, and be lapping other 50-year-olds that have not had this thought go through their head at any point in time.
I had that happen. When I was in chiropractic college, I did a little sprint triathlon. I didn’t know what I was doing. I was out of shape. It was terrible. I fell in a hole and sprained my ankle before I jumped in the water. I did the swimming and cycling. We got to the run and I was like, “At least I can hobble along and do this.” There is this little old man and he is doing this consistent shuffle.
He looked like he had been doing the shuffle for decades. This is how he had been running. I get up to him and pass him. I’m feeling pretty good. All of a sudden, he laps me. I learned the lesson that day that that is consistency. It pays off. He beat me. He will always continue to beat people until he drops dead but he will do it mobile with consistency and tenacity.
That is a consistent and persistent application of the things that you know are foundational and non-negotiable. That is how you get there. I don’t know if you have hiked Camelback out here but it is a beast.
I have tried. I didn’t get up.
That has been my fallback during the winter. I’m always hiking Camelback. Some people stay doing that all year round. A lot of them are these older guys or women. They will blow up that mountain right past me. That is humbling. I’m working on it day in and day out. This has been so fun. Before we get to where our readers can find more about you and all about your challenges, she does a Don’t Be Zombie Bait Challenge, which I love the name of it and everything. How do you live a heart-healthy lifestyle?
I specialize in musculoskeletal medicine and pain. In my head, treating musculoskeletal medicine and pain requires X, Y, and Z. It turns out that it is the same X, Y, and Z to treat cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative or any kind of neurological disease. It comes down to keeping inflammation low and having a healthy immune system that cooperates with you and doesn’t turn on you or leave you high and dry when needed so that you don’t succumb to chronic infections. It is a movement like we talked about so much in strength training.
That is how I look at it. I’m doing all the things for all the things. That is how I live a healthy cardiovascular life because my cardiovascular system is part of the rest of this. I need all of it to be working. It is good to sleep. I’m prioritizing sleep and that is not negotiable. If someone messes with my sleep, they got to go. They are out of my life. Making time for myself in the morning has been huge. I did this 9:00 AM interview with you because I love you but I won’t do a 9:00 AM interview for anybody else because I don’t do anything before 10:00 AM.
I will not start working until 10:00 AM because I’m not done yet. I have got a sauna, get my exercise, or quiet time in. I drink my coffee. A relaxing morning has made such a difference in my blood pressure and how my heart feels. It is honoring the way that I move and eat because that is a sign of respect for your body. If you don’t move much and eat well, that is a reflection of how much you respect yourself.
That has made all the difference for me. I didn’t have high blood pressure but bilaterally, things were very different. That lower blood pressure number was starting to come up. For me, it was like, “This is a sign that I got to do something.” It is taking time for myself and doing all the things in a way that honors my body. I don’t look at it as work or a task that I have to tick off. It is like, “This is what I get to do to have this meat suit and honor the spiritual being inside of me.”
Omicron will impact everybody, so why not get your heart ready in every way you can.
We have an incredible machine here and we have to treat it with respect. Tell our readers where they can follow you, find more about you, read your blogs, and all the things.
I have a podcast that I would love for you to come on and talk about heart health. It is called The Dr. Tyna Show. You can find it on any podcast player. I would love it if people would go check that out and subscribe if they like it. You can find me on Instagram. It is my most active place because most of these platforms are tyrannical and crazy. Instagram is no exclusion. That is where I have learned how to play the best. It is @DrTyna. In my link in my bio, you can find all the things like my Don’t Be Zombie Bait Challenge. You can get on my email list and follow me there. I will pat myself on the back. I try to write great comprehensive emails that bring a lot of value to people’s lives.
You learn it here, guys. All-encompassing health things are foundational. Give my friend Dr. Tyna a follow. We appreciate you being here. Thank you so much for your time.
Thanks for having me. It was fun.
- @DrTyna – Instagram
- The Dr. Tyna Show – Apple Podcasts
- Don’t Be Zombie Bait Challenge
About Dr. Tyna Moore
With nearly three decades experience in the medical world, Dr. Tyna Moore, ND, DC is a leading expert in holistic regenerative medicine and resilient health.
Traditionally and alternatively trained in science and medicine as both a Naturopathic Physician and Chiropractor, she brings a unique perspective to those wishing to build a more robust foundation in their health and well-being. She is also an author, podcast host, speaker, kettlebell devotee, mother and all around animal lover.
Dr. Tyna not only trains and coaches other doctors in the regenerative orthopedic therapies which she has specialized in for over a decade in clinical practice, but she is a fierce advocate for health autonomy and personal responsibility, which she helps others improve through her many offerings at Drtyna.com and on Instagram @drtyna.