Apologies for my lengthy silence on RBTI. If anything, I took a lot of time to let it all soak in, and to see what really stuck. As you may know, the personal benefits I got from RBTI included fat loss eating to appetite – even eating lots of palatable processed foods, disappearance of chest pain that I had suffered from for years, and tremendous improvement with some pain/weakness I had in my feet that had gotten worse over the year prior. Plus my nostrils seemed to become less inflamed as well, allowing me to breathe deeper. I thought my pet allergies were gone forever too, but it turned out that I was only not allergic to the pets I was around during my RBTI education.
I of course saw that it could do some impressive things for others as well. But like any set of dietary guidelines, the results are extremely mixed. Some people do great and have some extremely bizarre and strange positives take place – from moles and skin tags falling off to sudden improvement in lifelong ailments like ringing in the ears, cancer, diabetes, or emotional problems. Others get bloated, ill, fat, and depressed.
I’ve been thinking a lot more about the whole experience and trying to figure out exactly what kind of relief that people with certain health problems could expect and why. I mean, what is it about the program that caused the great results for the people who experienced it? Likewise, why did those who failed miserably and had significantly poorer health on the RBTI program see those results? Anyway, here’s an update on what I think about many RBTI-related things…
Pork – This is one thing I continue to avoid. It has a verifiable effect on body chemistry. It has a tendency to cause urea levels, salts, and urine brix to become overly elevated in the short-term, with continued consequences as body chemistry tries to sort itself out from the dramatic and sudden change. I believe that foods like shellfish and the big game fish like marlin, tuna, shark, etc. trigger a similar, but more modest effect. Because one of my biggest problems – chest pain, was most likely eradicated by lowering my urea levels and getting these out of my diet, I continue to avoid them. The other “no-no” foods, like nuts, chocolate, and so on I’m not so concerned about. But that is just me personally. If I had a chronic constipation issue I might take the consumption of nuts or popcorn for example, much more seriously.
Lemonade – I don’t think that there’s any question that the biggest trigger of problems for people who don’t do well on the program, is the drinking of the lemonade – and drinking on a schedule in general. This triggers more problems than anything else, and, because it is the weirdest and most tedious and annoying part of the program, you probably won’t catch me advising anyone to do it. While it may have some purpose for some conditions – and I would hate to deter someone away from trying it if they have a serious condition, for most people it’s a strange, obnoxious, and TOTALLY unsustainable and unrealistic practice. I cringe anytime I have to squeeze a lemon after my 4-5 months of lemonade making.
Min-Col – I’m repeatedly impressed with Min-Col specifically. Just taking it regularly for two days is enough for me to notice an appreciable difference in my overall well-being, and in the strength of my teeth, fingernails, etc. I’m still pretty damn enthusiastic about this mineral supplement, and feel that it makes sweating over the mineral content of the foods you eat a lot more irrelevant.
The Refractometer – Man I’m blown away by this, and have more to say about this than any other RBTI component. To me, the greatest discovery of RBTI is the connection between urine solute and what’s going on at the cellular level. I believe that sugar and salt are the primary fuels for driving true mitochondrial and metabolic activity, and there are TONS of people making the mistake of drinking too many fluids – thus diluting the concentration of salt and sugar at the cellular level and leaving them feeling cold, flat, depressed/anxious/irritable, and hypometabolic with cold hands and feet.
Just the other day I spoke with a gentleman who has been following the work of Ray Peat for over a year who was seeing his body temperature plummet by day, with serious problems with cold hands and feet. He was drinking 2-3 quarts of milk per day and a quart of juice as well, which was way too much fluid and was washing him out. He had problems for months but this seemed to basically clear up in a day or two of eating more solid food.
I think in the RBTI world many have led themselves to believe that sugary things like fruit will “raise the sugars” and plain water is the only thing that can bring it down. But this simply isn’t the case. Any excess fluid of any kind can make you urinate frequently with urine that is too clear with too little solute (another reason I have a huge problem with the drinking schedule, 8 ounces of fluid per hour is more than anyone but the most obvious “high sugar” people can tolerate). Any fluid can dilute your system too much. Noticing this has led to me making some recommendations that I haven’t heard elsewhere in RBTI when someone has a tendency to crash, urinates too frequently/clear urine, and has symptoms that coincide with it including cold hands and feet…
Low Water Content Foods:
The hardest time for most people to hold on to their salt and sugar is from about 10am to lunch. Because of this, you might note that eating foods with a high water content causes greater sugar crashes. When I was on the full program, eating a breakfast of say, oatmeal with juice and a big slice of watermelon and then trying to drink the water and lemonade? Fuhgeddaboudit! I would be peeing every 15 minutes with urine solute well below 0.5 brix – and feeling cold and flat.
Enter the pancake… Eating pancakes, waffles, muffins, banana bread, fried eggs, cookies, fruit pie – without much food with a higher water content such as milk, juice, and fruit? Now that’s what I’m talkin’ bout. These foods will make you much warmer and keep your sugars from crashing. I think one of the greatest benefits of processed foods like this isn’t even that they are more digestible but the fact that the water content is lower. This is a godsend for those who are really in a low metabolism rut, as even the smallest amount of fluid from food or drink beyond the bare minimum requirement to stay hydrated can cause some pretty violent crashing. Even having breakfast cereal with milk can be too much fluid for some.
Consuming more salt really keeps sugars from crashing, but only because it has the opposite effect of drinking/hydrating. The salt restriction of RBTI seems to be pretty nonsensical anyway. You will probably notice some great benefits by eating food that is pleasantly salty instead of trying to eat a low-salt diet.
When sugars crash below 1.5 on a refractometer, the standard advice I heard was to eat a “[bite] of fruit.” Fruit has a high water content. A fruit that is not very sweet and has a very high water content, like an apple, will do precisely nothing to bring your “sugars” up. It’s like one step forward and one step back. I have been steering people toward foods with zero water content to bring sugars up more effectively. Eating a handful of dried fruit, a very sweet Medjool date especially, works much better. Something salty might be even better. I suspect a handful of pretzels would be the ultimate snack for the low sugar dip.
1.5 Refractometer reading:
This is considered “ideal.” Don’t look at a set number and attribute an ideal status to it, especially if you are not following the full RBTI program and are not testing (like most people). At 1.5 I feel pretty much like ass, with cold hands and feet and many obvious signs of being “washed out” I like to call it. You may notice that you don’t feel really toasty and happy until your urine brix gets up into the 3’s and 4’s. I would encourage most casual RBTI’ers like myself who are trying to take advantage of some of the basic ideas without it cutting into your lifestyle, to pay more attention to biofeedback to determine your ideal “sugar level.”
It’s obvious that this increases the sugar level for most people, preventing crashes, increasing warmth and circulation, decreasing frequency of urination, and so forth.
Anyway, I hope this was an interesting read for those of you who were Jonesin’ to hear more about RBTI. I will keep bringing up some things on it periodically, and may even do a short book on the refractometer and “hypoglycemia” this spring. Stay tuned.
For those still interested in the RBTI package I put together last year, I have just lowered the price from $59.95 to $39.95 to make it a little more affordable. If you haven’t heard about RBTI, you can read a little bit about what this eBook/audio/video collection on the topic is all about HERE.
Lastly – the image at the top of the page as well as the nice RBTI graphics you see off to your left are the work of the wondrous graphic designer Chuck Johnson – aka Castle Grok. If you need any graphic design work done, he does some great work at the absolute cheapest price you’ll get quality work. Remember him if you do need some work like this done. You won’t be disappointed.