Episode 49 – Athlete Blood Chemistry, Scientific Literacy, and the Physiological Reserve with Dr. Tommy Wood
Today’s guest is Dr. Tommy Wood, a Research assistant professor at the University of Washington in the Department of Pediatrics. He also serves as President of Physicians for Ancestral Health, and on the scientific advisory board of Hintsa Performance. Tommy graduated with a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a medical degree from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo.
In this episode, we discuss scientific literacy and how a non-practitioner or specialist (your average fitness buff, in other words) can become more comfortable reading primary literature and ask better questions towards improving your health and performance. We also talk about how normative average values around blood chemistry can be misleading to athletes. Tommy also talks about his overall mission in the field of sports science, namely: “How can I make your brain and your body as healthy as possible for your entire lifespan? Pretty much everything that I’m a proponent of when it comes to long-term health and performance is maximizing your biochemical, physiological, physical reserve: What’s the difference between what you have to be able to do every day, and what you’re physically capable of? The bigger that reserve, the better everything is.”
Listen in as Tommy shares the value of having a journal club or a “challenge network”, why standards for athletic performance are regressing down to the lowest common denominator, and why most athletes should be taking creatine.
What You’ll Learn in This Episode:
[10:38] Why Tommy believes that most preclinical work is a waste of time
[14:14] How to become more scientifically literate as a layman
23:50] Why data around athletic performance is often misapplied
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