What’s up. Everybody is me drew Manning, your host of the Fit to fat to fit experience podcast. Thank you guys so much for tuning into today’s episode, and I appreciate you guys tuning in each and every week because I try and deliver high quality content that will help you guys with lifestyle goals, health goals, whatever it may be. Um, I’m here to try and just spread the word. That’s all I am. I’m just spreading the good word to you guys about health, fitness lifestyle, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, all of that. Uh, we try and cover all that on the podcast. Most of you guys know me from my fit Tibet fit journey that it did years ago, where I intentionally gained 75 pounds in six months and then lost it in six months, wrote a book about it. There’s a TV show on a and E called Fitbit fit now or a which I’m the creator of.

And you know, obviously I’m biased, but it’s a good show. Anyways, we are here with another great episode. I’m with my body, my body. Yes, my body is here. My buddy, dr. Shawn Wells, Shawn Wells is one of the best, if not the best supplement formulator in the entire world. I won’t read through all of his credentials just because there’s so many, uh, he’s got an MPH after his name and RD F I S S N C I S S N. Anyways. He’s got a unique blend of knowledge in the field of performance, nutrition, and supplementation. Um, he has formulated supplements for all kinds of companies that you guys have probably heard of diamond ties, AdvoCare BioTrust, Tia cream, and the list goes on. He attended UNC chapel Hill earning a master’s degree in nutritional biochemistry and minor and exercise sciences education along with credentials of a registered dietician and certified sports nutritionist, distinguished him as an expert in performance nutrition.

Like I said, he currently is the chief scientific officer over at BioTrust nutrition. A great supplement company actually use a lot of their products. I think they’re great stuff. But anyways, the reason I brought him on you guys was to talk about the supplement industry, supplement scams things, to look for things to avoid in certain supplements, because let’s be honest, it’s kind of like the wild West, the supplement industry. It’s not heavily regulated by the FDA. Yes. Like they regulate certain labeling and you know what you can, and can’t get away with on the labels. We get into all the specifics of that. He tells us specifically what to look out for and what to avoid. So super important information, especially if you’re trying to take care of your health. And you’re relying on these companies, you know, supplements to, um, provide you with some type of, you know, some type of pill or some type of powder.

You know, you want to know if, if that’s good stuff that you’re putting in your body. And so we kind of dive into the, the ins and outs of, of that and what to look for and what to avoid. So it’s great. It’s a great episode. You’ll definitely want to share this with your buddies. Those who do take a lot of supplements, um, because no, just power. So share that power with others. This episode, it was brought to you by D and X bars. These meat bars are available on Amazon prime. You can go check them out. D N D as in Delta, and as in Nancy, X is an X factor. Um, these are the highest quality meats combined with some healthy fats and seasonings that are available for on the go consumption, right? So here’s what I love about them. You guys, they use a hundred percent grass fed beef, a hundred percent grass fed bison meat, and they’re in their bars.

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DNX bars, go check them out on Amazon prime. And sometimes they might be available in your whole foods. Our next show sponsor is organic five. These guys, I have actually met the owner, drew cannoli through a mutual friend, Sean Stevenson, as you know, he’s a good friend of mine from, uh, the model health show, which is one of the top health and fitness podcasts out there. Um, he introduced me to the drew can only through a mastermind group and I’ve seen these guys everywhere. And here’s the thing. You guys I’ve used powdered green products for years ever since my fit to fat to fit days. I’ve had one of these almost every single day. Cause I understand the benefits of these and I don’t like juicing, right? I don’t like the mess. Um, the cost of it. And that’s why I love these powdered greens. Cause you can take them with you on the road.

And so I was introduced to Organifi and I’ll be honest with you guys, powdered greens. They do not taste good, right? The majority of them, you taste them and you just gotta Chuck it down. Now for me, I’m the type of person that knows how beneficial it is. So I’m just going to Chuck it. But other people out there, they cannot stomach the flavor of these. And so that’s why I love about Organifi. Every single person that’s told me, you know, I just don’t drink powdered greens. Cause it tastes disgusting, likes or get the taste of Organifi. They do a great job at making it taste good. They don’t add in sugar, but it is. They use coconut and ashwagandha and they infuse it with that. And that’s what makes it, I think tastes so good. But um, they do a great job of making it taste good because I don’t care how something hell how I don’t care how healthy something is.

If it’s, if it doesn’t taste good people, aren’t going to drink it. So Organifi does a great job with that. You guys, and they come and single serving packets that you can bring with you on the go. And this helps me upgrade my nutrition and my immune system when I’m on the go. And so that’s what I love about Organifi. And for my followers, you guys, you get 20% off. They’re giving 20% off to everybody that uses the code fit to fat to fit. Uh, if you go to organifi.com, that’s O R G a N I F i.com use the code fit to fat, to fit for 20% off, the link will be in the show notes. You guys, you go there, you use the code, you get 20% off and I promise you, you will enjoy finally the taste of these powdered greens and you get all the benefits and the micronutrients from juicing, but, uh, you know, less than half the costs and without the mess.

And it’s so much more convenient to take with you. So organifi.com use the code fit to fat, to fit for 20% off. All right, our next show sponsor is four Sigmatic. Now let’s talk about magic mushrooms. Okay? I’m not talking about, uh, the shrooms that are a hallucinogen that are gonna make you trip out on talking about the benefits of real mushrooms. Um, with science backed facts that have been used by indigenous populations for centuries, right decades. And these people have been using this, uh, not technology, but these, the benefits of these mushrooms for thousands and thousands of years. And it’s been backed up by, by recent science. That’s what I love about four Sigmatic. You guys, they’re such a unique product, right? You got people like Tim Ferriss talking about them. You got people like Sean Stevenson talking about them. And they’re so awesome because they have figured out a way to extract the benefits and the nutrients from these mushrooms into a powder drink mix.

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Sean Wells. Welcome to the podcast, man. How you doing? Thanks brother. I’m doing really well. That’s awesome, man. And it’s, it’s been a long time coming. I’ve been meaning to have you on for a while now we met, I’m trying to think how long ago was back at fit con right? Um, yeah. Fit con uh, 2016, um, Craig present or, uh, event. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So that’s when we first met. So it’s been almost a year, uh, which by the way, are you going to be at Pittcon this year? I will. And I will be presenting again. And last time I, I actually presented on supplement scams. Yes. Which is what we’ll be diving into today. So, well, I’m glad we finally finally connected. Let’s um, let’s start from the beginning for you and kind of introduce you to my followers are heard in a different interview.

You talk about how you have this passion for supplements and you had a lot of people trying to talk you out of going down that road. What, first of all, what led you? What led you to that passion for nutritional supplements, man? You know, it actually started, uh, I was, um, I’m old now. I was born in the seventies, but, uh, my mom like started out like very early on in the seventies selling Shaklee products. I don’t know if you know that brand, but I’ve heard of it. Yeah. They, they started in Europe. They had, um, uh, Vita Lee was like, they’re like they had a whole food, a multivitamin, they were like way ahead of their time. And they had a, I remember she had, you know, the tackle box that everyone got kind of later on in the late eighties and nineties, she had that way early on and, you know, had the vitamin E and the vitamin C and the whole thing, like, you know, right at like 1980 or so I think it was, that was like the ortho molecular dosing of vitamin C was huge at that time. Uh, just started getting big with Linus Pauling. And so I remember when I was sick, she’s like, you know, take this, take extra vitamin C. And I was just fascinated by all that stuff. Like, you know, we kind of leaned on that more heavily than, uh, you know, taking drugs and, um, and it just started from there really that’s where my passion started. Uh, it cool, man. I felt like I felt, I felt a difference,

You know, like even early on. So, um, that’s where my fascination came from. So

Teenage high school years, college years,

Were you kind of interested in studying at that point? Did it stay nutritional supplements or did you kind of go down a different road for awhile? Well, my dad told me, you know, to,

I was, I was very smart. I scored

Very well on all the tests. I was always like 99 percentile on all this stuff. And, you know, I was told that you should go to like MIT, you should do engineering. And then I was told, you know, businesses, you know, smartest thing to do. And, you know, you can maybe go on with some Anderson Cooper, you know, Pricewaterhouse type thing. And, and, uh, and I was just kinda going along with it, cause it just seemed like the way to make money. And at the time, like that’s what I thought you’re supposed to do is just go out there and try and make big dollars. And so I went to, uh, the number one business specialty school in the country it’s called Babson college. And, um, and I did, uh, uh, marketing and information systems. Uh, it, and I did a minor in chemistry, but it was, uh, I think, um, like my sophomore or junior year that I, uh, I started working out really heavy.

I’d worked out in the past, but I started working out really heavy and seeing like some great results. And I was using creates in, uh, the FASFA gain, fast Virgin, um, you know, from EAs bill Phillips, muscle media, 2000, all that stuff was blowing my mind at the time. And man, I was just like getting incredible gains. And then I started working at a GNC and, you know, just really digging into all the products, just reading the labels, like for hours and then reading every magazine that, you know, I just sit there at the desk, like, you know, probably two thirds of the time, like, you know, you’re not really doing much. You can just read. And of course at that time there wasn’t really internet to get on.

Yeah. So

Man, it was just, I just absorbed it all. And I remember I went to a doctor, you know, just for a physical and I was telling him about all my passions, you know, like what I’ve been doing and, you know, nutrition and it’s so cool, like supplements and all this stuff. And, and, uh, he’s, you know, and I also told him that, you know, I’m getting close to finishing up my, my business degree and he’s like, well, you know, what are you going to do? And I was like, well, you know, I think I’ll just, you know, go on and start with one of these big companies and make some money. And he’s like, well, what about your passion? I was like, well, you know, I’d have to go back to school and you know, that would be frowned upon and you know, that’s more money and all that kind of stuff.

And he said, you know, he drew out this lifeline for me. I think I was 20 at the time. And he drew out a lifeline to whatever, 80, 90, a hundred. And he said, okay, you know, what about from here to here? And I said, why, why wouldn’t you want to be happy? And it was just like an epiphany, a paradigm shift. And it was from a complete stranger. And I can’t even remember his name, but if I could go back and you know, it’s like, it’s like something out of like out of a novel or a movie, like where like someone that’s a stranger completely changed my life path. I mean, really like, it’s like, you, you never know. I got, I want to say this. And I’ve said this in so many talks and different things. You never know how powerful of an impact your words are going to have on someone because you just don’t know where they’re at in their life.

Like at that exact moment. And it’s, it was pivotal to me. Like it was literally like a light turned on. I’m like, I can do that. You know? And especially cause it was like a medical doctor of all people like saying this. And like, if he’s like kind of giving me the green light, it’s not a crazy guy. And, and you know, I was like, Oh man, like not only do I want to study nutrition, but I want to be like, like, you know, this is so cool. Like all these formulas, like I’d like to be like a supplement formulator. And it’s like, it’s crazier than me saying, I want to be like a Hollywood actor because there’s probably a lot more Hollywood actors like even popular alias Hollywood actors. Then there are several good formulators, but it’s the insane thing is that like, um, you know, a top the, the heat and that’s exactly what I’m doing right now. It’s, it’s like, I literally just achieved my dream. I’m like, it’s incredible. It’s like, it’s, it’s my story. And to me, it’s actually incredible to me. Like, like when I look back, it’s like, this thing really happened.

I know. And it was so cool as you made it happen. Like you believed it, you had a passion for it. You’re like I’m going to make this happen. And you know, there was probably some rough roads along the way or the decision to go back to school and more money and all that. But you made it happen, man. And that’s, I think that’s cool for anybody, you know, that has a goal that wants to achieve their dreams. You can really do. And so here you are. So what does one go to school for? Do become a supplement. Formulator. What was your, where did you go from there?

Yeah, I actually, uh, went and got additional courses, uh, at UNC Greensboro where I was actually, my parents had moved down there. So I got in state tuition, which I’m going to a state school, saves you a lot of money when you’re going to do a lot of school, um, versus my private business school, which was insanely expensive. Um, and you know, I needed all these like science classes, like literally, like it was like 26, 28 hours credit hours a semester. And I had to go like winter, spring, summer fall, like even like the off sessions, like two years straight to like make it all happen just to like get a crack at going to get my masters. That sounds science I needed. And I went to the guidance there and he told me you’re a business student. There’s no way you can do this.

Think again. And so, you know, the flip side of what I was just saying, like, again, it’s this isn’t made up like, this is, this is true that like someone could have just as easily, like, has someone gave me my dream, someone could have just as easily taken away my drink. If I listened to that guy, then I would have never done this. I would have never been where I am. I would have never traveled all the places I’ve been and made all the products I’ve made and, you know, done cool shows like this one, you know, never met people like you and all that. Would’ve never happened, but I did it, I smoked it. I got straight A’s I crushed it. Um, and then I got into chapel Hill and I did my masters in nutritional biochemistry because I was told it makes sense.

You know, if you want to do like sports nutrition, like probably, you know, focus on the nutrition side, cause you can get a job as an RD anywhere, you know, exercise is it’s, you know, it’s a lot tougher. And so that’s what I did. I, uh, I focused on the nutritional biochemistry. I got my RD, uh, clinical registered dietician, and then, uh, I also minored in, uh, exercise sports science. Gotcha. And so what was your first gig out of college? Uh, working as, you know, an RD, uh, clinically, I worked in hospitals, um, nursing homes and it was a great foundation, really. Like I was, uh, I did that for about 10 years and it was a wonderful foundation to give me a lot of, I think, credibility clinically to have the ethics that I think that are important, that a lot of supplement companies or people in the industry could be lacking.

You know, I was working with patients and it was, you know, sometimes life or death things. Or sometimes I was talking to families right after someone did pass. You know, I was dealing with people that had, uh, you know, burns, severe burns or cancer or, you know, they needed to feeding cause they had a stroke, like, you know, all this kind of stuff that, I mean, it was really real and am, I’m super passionate about health care and anti-aging now as a result of all the things that I’ve seen and the people that I’ve talked to. And I’m an advocate for everyone around me. Like people reach out to me all the time in my family and my circle of friends about health issues. And I try and educate myself as much on that kind of stuff. Like, you know, just where healthcare is at and what are the best, uh, you know, ways to attack certain conditions because people look to me for that.

So, um, you know, I definitely, I, I try and stay sharp on that stuff, but you know, during that period of time, uh, I started doing like forums and, you know, doing marketing pieces for companies for free. And then, you know, being like an internet, a rep on, you know, different boards, like bodybuilding.com, you know, for, for various companies. And I just kinda kept working my way up in there. And um, and then I started, you know, doing a few formulas and I didn’t get paid any money. Uh, people, people knew me and assumed that I was, you know, some big time guy in the company, you know, like I had this title of chief science officer, you know, this man’s sports and you know, companies. And they were like, Oh man, he must be a big deal. I wasn’t getting a dime. Everything I did was free.

And I’ll tell you, you want to know how you get successful. I mean, you have to work your ass off. I gave up everything, everything for 10 years, I worked probably 50 plus hours a week as well, chief clinical dietician. I work my weekend and I worked snow days. I worked holidays. I got called in at three in the morning. Then my off time I was doing marketing write ups. I was doing forums. I was working on formulations of sourcing, you know, coming up with new ingredients, you know, I’d go to like the Arnold, I’d go to the Olympia as my vacation time. I never had a day off. I never had an hour off. And luckily my wife went along with this and uh, you know, she’d come with me to these trips, to like Columbus, Ohio, where it’s snowing crappy. And I mean, you know, how the weather always is terrible, that thing.

And you know, it’s, it’s not exactly a fun place to go, but you know, that’s what I was passionate about. And she just supported that and, you know, I just was trying to make it happen. And then eventually, um, you know, this job came open for a director of R and D it’s a diamond ties and, uh, that was down in Dallas. And at the time I was in Charlotte and I interviewed for that and I just, I crushed it. And, uh, and I came on board to do all their formulations and, you know, diamond ties was also, uh, doing, um, uh, ma manufacturing for, uh, for private label. And so they were doing GNC vitamin Shoppe, uh, AdvoCare smoothie King, uh, w then we ended up like buying a Supreme protein bars, ended up, uh, you know, getting involved with premiere. Um, so like a bunch of companies, um, and, you know, for three years I reformulated everything, um, made stuff, tastes better and, you know, have more functionality, you know, test out perfectly.

Um, and so I just became completely adept at that. And here again, like you want to get good at something, you know, what, what would I do? Like, you know, it’s five o’clock and everyone else was going home. I mean, Rob, my boss, who was the CSO there, uh, dr. Rob Wildman, he’ll tell you, like, I was there until like 10 or 11 o’clock at night. I was there at six, seven in the morning. Yeah. And, you know, I would just stay late and I just walk around and talk to the C level guys and like try and pick their brains, you know, and then I’d, I’d try and work on projects that weren’t even my own projects. So, so they, you know, think of me as someone who’s really useful, really knowledgeable. And then I learned how to do, like all the costs of goods, spreadsheets.

I learned how to do all the sourcing, how to do the quality control testing, how to do marketing competitive analysis and how to do, you know, a concept brief. And I was doing all this stuff for everyone. And then everyone kind of, you know, started relying on me and then, you know, they’re there, I was in these like boardroom meetings with, you know, the C team. And then me why? Because they kept saying like, um, you know, who knows the answer to this thing? Like, they’d always say, uh, Sean does. And it’s like, well, why don’t we invite Sean to these meetings? And so like, it got to the point where I’d be getting in all these meetings and, you know, then I became like this super well known formulator. And, uh, because I had, you know, it wasn’t just like some really smart guy who knows biochemistry, but doesn’t understand how much something costs or the reality of a product or that it needs a marketing hook or that these ingredients don’t work together.

Cause you know, they have interference and testing or that that’s going to turn into a brick, you know, six months down the road towards moisture, you know, it’s like, I understood all this stuff. Like I, that’s why I wanted to like learn everything about the business top to bottom. So it could be very useful in that my products didn’t flop for one reason or another. Do you remember what your first formulation was? Uh, yeah, it was a product called, um, Altima. Um, that was a really cool pre-workout speaking it. So this is there’s a lot. That was perfect that you mentioned that. Cause it was a, I think it was like 22, $23 for a, the raw materials just for that product reworked out. And I think we sold it for like 40, uh, you know, like on a site, which means we made like probably $2 on it, um, which is not the best way to do business.

So, uh, that didn’t work out so well. So that was like a good lesson learned. Like I made like, you know, a lot of people on these forums or, you know, people like, Oh, I can make a product and they make some dream product that’s super expensive and you know, that doesn’t work, you know, you need get obviously profits back to keep the company rolling, to invest into good quality control, to invest into people, to invest into those things. Like, you know, those things matter. Um, and, uh, and certainly if you want quality products that have, um, transparent labeling and that, and that really good testing like we were talking about and it’s, that’s, it’s got to come from somewhere. Yeah,

Yeah, no, I’m sure you’ve learned a lot of lessons along the way, you know, from your first formulation to how you, you know, formulate, you know, your latest formula, um, w which by the way, can ask that what what’s, what was your newest formulation that you wrote?

Uh, newest formula it’s? Well, the one I just rolled out was one called Metabo greens. It’s unbelievably great tasting greens product, um, that actually has, uh, real doses of everything in it. It doesn’t have any like fructose or, you know, added fruit, juice, extracts, and all that kind of stuff. And it tastes really good. I mean, for, for a true greens product that has effective amounts of everything. And what’s really cool is, uh, we put like this, uh, ingredient spectra as well as some other ingredients in it. And, um, it has really good research and improves blood flow and oxygenation. And like, so people, I feel like really alert on it and like, everyone keeps asking me, like, does it have caffeine in it? And I’m like, it’s so great to say, no, I know that cause we actually tested it. And, uh, and it, and it doesn’t have caffeine, but everyone loves it.

So that’s a super cool one that I’m proud. Um, certainly I’ve had to like learn a lot about flavoring. That’s a huge part of this. Uh, if it doesn’t taste good, it doesn’t matter. Like you’ll always get like some hardcore guy, like that’ll like snort it or like, you know, like, you know, like do a, like, you know, a line of this stuff and whatever, like they don’t care like, um, but, but Jordy of the population is it’s got to taste good, uh, or else they’re not buying it. And so I’ve learned a lot on that front, you know, just even like flavor stability, like things like sweeteners, you gotta understand, like there’s a front end sweetener, a middle end sweetener, and then, you know, backend sweetener and how they work together. And, you know, they can bring out the flavor of front end and backend flavor and, um, you know, there’s volatility of flavors and there’s just so much, you know, maskers sweetener, enhancers and all this kind of stuff that like you need to learn. That’s, um, it’s, it’s a whole science unto itself. And let me tell you guys that are really deep in that stuff are just brilliant scientists, but, um, no, it’s really cool. Like, you know, you think about like alcohols and, you know, vape, you know, the, the vaping stuff. And like that stuff is like, when I go to these flavor houses and work with them on just, you know, various proteins and other products, like those are actually the biggest things right now that they’re working on like putting tons of money into alcohols and vaping. Sadly,

That’s so crazy. There’s so much that goes into these products that you’re in consumer doesn’t really care to know, or doesn’t really even like, there’s like, Oh, does it taste good? Cool. Yeah, I like it. And then you guys would put sweat and tears and blood into all this stuff to make it perfect. You know, and you know, we don’t know how many times you guys failed to make the product, you know, palatable and things like that. So I appreciate you kind of exposing this side of it. Cause I know that you put in so much work and effort into these things and some people are just, you know, they just are too busy to even care, but, um, has there ever been a company kind of getting into ethics that you have, you don’t have to talk about the name of the company, but that you’ve had to turn down or say, no, I’m like, that’s not, for me, I’m not going to do that job because they wanted you to do something, not unethical, but just kind of, you know, you don’t feel comfortable with, or they kind of wanted you to tweak some things to, you know, make the profits better.

Things like that.

Absolutely, absolutely. That that is definitely have, I’ve got a lot of offers from a lot of companies. Um, and which I’m blessed to say that I’m not saying that as someone that’s, that’s arrogant. Um, but, uh, again, you know, it’s just, it’s, it’s often surreal for me to think about where I am and, and I truly appreciate it and I truly appreciate all the people that have influenced me to get me here. It wasn’t just that one doctor, it’s been a great network of people that I have around me that have made me special. Like people that I, I work with that are true experts or people that inspire me or, um, you know, just give me energy and hope and positive feelings to just attack all this. But, uh, so I I’m super blessed to have all the people I have around me, but yeah, certainly, um, you know, I won’t mention, you know, the company’s name like said, but, um, yeah, I mean, first off and foremost is, you know, one of the first companies I ever worked with was that company man sports that I talked about and one of their big things, and this was very cool, that influenced me was that they had transparent labeling and this was, you know, 10, 15 years ago now.

And you know, that was, that was actually big to the CEO, uh, Joey Rodriguez at the time, because, you know, it was, it was a way to, you know, cite studies say, we have study back dosing. Uh, you had to test against it. You know, if you do proprietary blend, not only can you, um, you know, front-load something with what’s cheapest and then ferry does something, you know, that’s the really cool ingredient. And so you’re basically putting it like one milligram of something because you got this proprietary blend, not only that, but you don’t really need to do all the testing. That’s very expensive and time consuming because you don’t need to prove that it’s, you know, in there at 250 milligrams, you know what I mean?

So I thought it was just so cool.

I’m the CEO of this company, like made it so important that these ingredients, you know, be at the right doses. And there wasn’t 600 ingredients. There was, you know, usually less 10 ingredients and they were just efficacious study, backed ingredients. And you know, like so many of these companies that are just so hype-y and marketing based, which I love their marketing, but this one company in particular that I was talking to, it was just, that was one of their biggest things. Everything was prop blended and, you know, there’s like 50 ingredients in a pre-workout and he’s just like, you know, this is, this is crap. It’s just caffeine. It’s just caffeine and flavor. You know, speaking of things, tasting good, you know, they made sure it tasted good. They added some, they added stimulants. So you felt it and they might add something like beta alanine or niacin. So you feel like some tangling or, you know, whatever, you know, a few experiential ingredients that are cheap, but the rest, you know, nothing. Yeah.

Which you’re in consumer doesn’t really know or care about. Like they, you know, some people just look at the labeling like, Oh, that looks cool. Or that looks unique or they see it in a magazine or on the shelf. And, um, so they know that they can get away with that with some people that will buy it just because one, it looks cool. One, it makes them feel good and three, it tastes good. Right. So, um, let’s, let’s kind of dive into a little bit more of the meatier stuff. As far as like scams, like we talked a little bit just recently briefly about it, you know, like the proprietary blend, what are some other scam supplement scams that your average person might not know about that goes on behind the scenes? Well,

A huge one that we exposed, uh, when we were at diamond ties, because we were largely a protein company, um, was nitrogen spiking or, you know, sometimes it’s also called protein spiking and, uh, very common in the industry, uh, you know, up until probably three years ago. Uh, and then there was class action lawsuits around this, but, uh, basically when, when whey protein, uh, skyrocketed, um, you know, it’s a byproduct of cheese manufacturing, uh, it used to actually just be dumped in the river. No joke. I can tell they figured out like, Hey, we can make something of this, but, uh, you know, when whey protein skyrocketed, they found out like these other things that contain nitrogen, which you, you know, you actually do a protein testing by Kaldor. So it’s, it’s nitrogen, and then there’s a conversion factor. And then it tells you how many, supposedly how many grams of protein are in it, easy to scam. And so they’d add these high nitrogen cheap ingredients. Like kreatin like taurine, like glycine in their proteins and they’d call it like the, you know, the, you know, nootropic bland or the myo blast land, or, you know, whatever, and they’d call these things something. And you just think that they’re in there like, Oh, cool, like extra amino acids. What you didn’t know is that you weren’t getting the same. Like it says 25 grams of protein and you’re actually getting like 15 grams of protein and you’re getting all these other amino acids.

That’s, that’s crazy, man, Noah and I actually have heard of that. And that has been pretty exposed. I think nowadays, most people understand that part of it. What about some other schemes? Um,

Let me think, uh, like the, the proprietary blend one is

That still goes on today though, doesn’t it? I mean, I can still get away with proprietary blend and yeah,

Absolutely. And so I would tell anyone that, you know, that cares about supplements to pay extra and, and get the supplement that lists every ingredient on there that lists the herbs and where it came from. Like, you know, whether it’s the STEM, the root, the leaf, the flower, um, you know, they give as much information as possible. What it standardized to, like, if it’s gin sing, it says, you know, 10 aside a, or, you know, whatever it is, you know, uh, st John’s ward, it’s high Pearson or, you know, whatever. And, and, you know, it lists the amount and then it lists the order, uh, that they come in. And so another important thing about that, that not only do you need to test out at time a manufacturer for each of those things, but you actually need to test out for full shelf life.

So if you have a two year shelf life, you need to still test out two years from time, a manufacturer at what’s listed on the label. Now a lot of these ingredients can oxidize or interfere with each other and, you know, they lose potency. So you have to do what’s called stability work. And what you do with that is, you know, you do accelerated stability work. So it’s kind of under some heat and moisture, and, you know, you can prove out like what would essentially be real time stability. And, you know, you have to put in overages now, what do you do with overages overages cost money? So like, you might have to put in 5%, 10%, 25% overage. Now, if that’s an ingredient that costs a hundred dollars thousand dollars, $5,000 kilo, and this stuff adds up, you know, there’s, there’s ingredients that really have poor stability.

Um, like let’s say our alpha lipoic acid, our ALA that actually needs to be shipped like, um, almost at freezing temperatures and it needs to be kept and stored that way. And then you need to take like a lot of measures, uh, with overages and, you know, desiccant packs, uh, in the bottle, um, you know, to, to reduce the amount of, uh, oxygen it’s exposed to all this kind of stuff. And like, you know, excipients that go into the product that dry the ingredients. So it’s not exposed to too much moisture. Um, you have to do a ton, a ton of work, and a lot of money spent like to actually have something test out and be effective. So if you’re buying these products that are just proprietary blends, and you’re happy with your product, that’s half as much as everything else out there. I mean, there’s a reason that obviously, you know, there’s a reason that things are cheaper.

You know, you go with companies that are, that have a solid reputation that lists everything out that are playing by the rules, uh, that aren’t making ridiculous claims like 672000% improvement. You know, like, you know, put all that stuff aside, like look at the ethics of the company. And if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Um, so that’s, that’s a huge scam. Uh, the proprietary blend thing just, just will go on forever. Probably. Um, another one I would say is maltodextrin, like, especially in like a weight gainers and a, like a lot of different products, it gets because multiple maltodextrin is essentially essentially sugar to your body, but like the way it gets listed, it’s actually, um, technically 90% carb and only 10% sugar. And so, uh, you know, people listed as like, you know, healthy carbs and, you know, low glycemic carbs and all this stuff, and, you know, very low sugar in their gainers because they can add maltodextrin, which is unbelievably cheap, like less than 50 Hilo.

And, you know, it adds bulk to your gainers and adds. So you get these huge servings, you get more calories, but it’s all just sugar. It’s not healthy carbs. It’s not, you know, and of course, I know you’re keto, I’m Quito, but even for people that aren’t, you know, this, this isn’t an ideal thing. Now, maybe if you like some targeted ketogenic diet and you want to hit something, pre-workout maybe it’s cool for you, but as it is high-glycemic, and it is just sugar. So that’s a big scam. I’m trying to think of what else. Um, let’s see. Yeah.

I feel, I feel like the proprietary blend is still a big one, but I feel like the, you know, more, you know, companies that are trying to make a change, they’re trying to do what’s right there. They’ll list out the ingredients, how much of that ingredients in there, and they’ll get rid of the proprietary blends, um, if they have nothing to hide. Right. And I feel like maybe only a small percentage of people will appreciate that right now, but I think that number is growing and increasing with people becoming more educated through, through you and through podcasts like this to, you know, you put the knowledge and the power of the consumer, they’re going to start to demand change. You’re right. They’re gonna stop buying certain products, uh, with based off of the new knowledge that they, that they have now. So, um, I feel like, yeah, I feel like hopefully people will start to pay attention more to the supplements that they buy. I guess

I got another big one. Okay. I got another big one and this is actually a huge one that you’ll never know unless you literally test out the product and you have a good knowledge of testing, it’s called dry labbing. And this happens throughout the industry that you essentially have, like your contract manufacturer, whoever makes your product, um, you know, they get tests, quote, unquote from the materials, you know, whatever that raw material is that ingredient, um, you know, sent this paperwork that comes along with, uh, the ingredient. And, you know, it says, Oh, it tests out at this level. And most of these suppliers, these Chinese ingredient suppliers, not all Chinese ingredient, suppliers are bad. I use a lot of them. You have to like, do a lot of testing to figure out which ones are good, but you know, it is kind of like the wild West or wild East, if you will.

Um, but you know, these, this paperwork will come with these ingredients and it’ll say a test out at this level and they never did any testing. And then, you know, they just printed it up. And that’s the term dry labbing, because you’re literally just typing something up on a computer. You never test it. You don’t even have the equipment to test it. And then the contract manufacturer, a lot of them do this to the, you know, the smaller guys, the guys who, you know, it’s kinda the same thing. Like, you know, you, you price your product out at like 10 different contract manufacturers. And then some guy comes in low balling, well, this is how he’s doing it. Like, he’s, you know, he’s getting some crappy ingredient and then he’s saying, Oh yeah, it tests out at this level. And a lot of these smaller companies, and again, I’d be a little careful with some very small companies, especially is they don’t have the money to do their own testing.

Third party testing, where they’re sending, you know, they get, yes, they get results from a contract manufacturer. But then before they release the product, they send it to a Chrome IDEXX, to a Covance, to an Alchemist, to Euro fins, like a really top end, uh, lab. And they have it tested and then they can see, okay, you know, this product isn’t testing out, right. What’s going on here, I’m paying this guy, you know, to have a product that tests out at this level and meets label claim, and that we’re not getting that. And even worse is there’s actually some manipulative things you can do with even the testing method, like where. So for example, um, I can get focus and thin, which is like a, a weight loss ingredient from, um, from, uh, seaweed. And it’s a type of like sea carotinoids. Um, it has some weight loss benefits to it.

And, you know, you can get a 5% focus and thin for a $40, a kilo that tests out at 5% by UV testing, ultraviolet testing, which is, uh, you know, one way of testing something. But it’s a far inferior method, like things like UV and titration compared to HPLC, HPTLC all these kinds of testing methods that are really best in class. And if I wanted one that tests out a 5% focus and then by HPLC, it’s $5,000 Akila. Wow. So like, if you see like this product, Oh, it’s 5%, for example, it says so on the label, and it’s not even proprietary blended, but they’re using this other method, which they don’t have to tell you about it tests out and they’re within compliance. Yeah. But you know, how effective is it going to be? It’s not going to be effective now. People are like, eh, I’ve used that ingredient before.

And it sucks. And if you’re here that you’re the guy that’s using the expensive material and you’re like, Hey, I get the real stuff, but you really can’t say that the other guys are doing anything illegal here. Your stuff is like a thousand times better and is actually effective. But everyone’s saying that doesn’t work or I’ve tried that in four. So, you know, you gotta give credit to like the people that are doing things best in class that have been around a while that are, you know, just, just quality companies and you, you should know who those people are. You know, they’re the ones that aren’t making the big, bold claims. They’re the ones that have like the good looking labels. Um, you know, that, that people are saying that this product works. I’ve trusted them for years. Those are the good brands brands. Like, I can give some examples, obviously the ones I’ve worked with like diamond ties and BioTrust, but you know, there’s companies like, um, thorn, uh, is really high end stuff like now has incredible quality control. I like them, uh, Jeroen and another brand. That’s really good, you know, for fish oil, things like Nordic naturals or Barlean’s, um, you know, those are really optimum. Nutrition is a solid company. Um, you know, all the Glanbia companies test out really well it’s um, like BSN, um, you know, so those are, those are some of the ones that I would say, uh, to stick to. Those are some really good brands, some favorites of mine.

Yeah. So pretty much the ones that have been around for quite a while they’ve been in the industry, uh, with good reputations, you know? Yeah, yeah.

Not, not, you know, like you gotta be careful in some things like the latest thing. And quite often, like those ingredients that are like so hot in sports nutrition that are the hottest ingredient, um, they don’t test out, um, it’s just label fluff. You know, it doesn’t have any research behind it and it’s not, um, it’s not even to Shea compliant, meaning that it’s, it’s not even allowed to be a dietary supplement half the time. And, you know, you’re like really rolling the dice on what you’re putting in your body. And if you’re even getting what’s on the label and, you know, it’s, it could be complete garbage, but you’re excited to take this new latest magic pill. But quite often, it’s the thing that’s been around for three, four or five years that actually has some studies on it that has some quality companies that are making it, that you can actually trust.

Yeah. So I’m kind of shifting gears here. I kind of want to ask you this, um, you know, cause it seems like from your background, you’ve, you’ve come from like the body building industry, right. Proteins and mass scanners and, and getting big. How did you go down the road of Quito? What led you down that path?

Oh man. Uh, so I started getting into that about 20 years ago. Uh, yeah. Um, I first read, uh, Dan Duchenne’s, uh, body Opus and a, that was like out of my love for, uh, EAs and muscle media, 2000 and all that kind of stuff. And who is the steroid guru of that magazine. And, uh, he had this crazy diet for bodybuilders that they could get really shredded on and it was called body Opus. And, um, it was an interesting book. It came out, um, you know, back in the, I think the early nineties. Um, and then after that was, um, Lyle McDonald’s, um, ketogenic diet for the practitioner. And I read that book and really that kind of cemented, um, my interest in it. And also my mom had done the Atkins diet and had really good success, um, even in the late seventies.

So like when we were talking about Shaklee and some of that, so, um, the whole thing about like, you know, going low carb wasn’t, wasn’t crazy to me. And, um, and I tried it and had phenomenal success. The hard thing was for me to stay on it for years, you know, because when I would do it, I was one, uh, you know, pretty much a lazy guy and two, there wasn’t like one, 100th of the options that there are now, as far as restaurants, he made foods or snacks or there wasn’t the internet, or there wasn’t like a lot of like places for me to, you know, find all this stuff. So it’d be like, you know, I’d be doing eggs and bacon and sausage and steak and Manet’s and you know, all this stuff and I’d be doing that every day and you know, like about, and it was great for like three weeks a month, like six weeks.

Like, and I, you know, I dropped weight, I, you know, get pretty cut. Like you could drop 15 pounds like that, you know? And it’s like, yeah, this is great. But you know, at some point you kind of get burned out on it now. I mean, the recipe, like the sites. Yeah. You can get stuff, you can get premade meals and snacks and you know, all these things. I was just at that one Quito conference down in Tampa, and there’s all these companies, you know, quest, Quito, and there’s a pasta company. There’s keto, cookie there’s, you know, all of this kind of stuff. It’s just everywhere now. You know, people are coming out with snacks left and right. And ketos kind of the hottest thing now. And you know, all these recipes and my wife makes just unbelief livable recipes. Like she can literally, she literally made like a cows zone, literally a cow zone and it was tasted like a real cows zone.

She makes waffles real waffles. And we use like Walden farms, Sierra, you know, add the butter and everything. And it’s, it’s, it tastes like real waffles and just makes biscuits that tastes like, you know, kind of a red lobster, you know, style like cheesy buttery biscuits. And they’re amazing. And like, you don’t miss it and like, Oh, she can make like fried chicken or, you know, whatever by like taking, um, the pork skins, you know, crushing those up, like, you know, doing like the egg dip and, and it tastes like, you know, fried chicken or chicken fingers or whatever. And it’s like, you can do all this stuff and it’s, it’s nuts. Like, um, so, and the desserts, like you can do now with all the sweeteners that we have and, you know, there’s just so many options and, um, it’s, it’s so easy now. Like I barely like even care about my cheat day anymore. Yeah.

I see what you’re saying. A kind of interesting question. Cause I feel like, you know, with you all the knowledge you have, which is a huge, you know, um, talent and the huge, um, in a way luxury that you have, do you sometimes find yourself getting lazy with your nutrition? Cause you’re like, Oh, I can take, like, I know what, what supplements to take to get the most bang for my buck without having to, you know, diet down too hard or work out too hard to get the most, the maximum results with the least amount of effort. Do you ever feel like you’ve been through that? Cause you’re like, uh, you know, you have all the knowledge about certain supplements, which ones to take to get the most bang for your buck. Is that even an issue for you at all? Or am I just,

No, it absolutely was. No, no, no, no. It absolutely was when, when I was, uh, really absorbed myself into diamond ties and I was working just tons of hours and I was kind of new to, to the true side of the industry. I’d worked on one side of it, but I hadn’t been really like knee deep in it like that. And, um, you know, I was working so much and uh, sleeping so little, uh, that, you know, I probably let a lot of things slip as far as my health. And then I ended up getting, uh, what’s called a pituitary. I had Noma, um, it’s, it’s a benign, uh, tumor that’s in my pituitary and it messed up like a lot of my hormones and, um, you know, it was, it was kind of, uh, you know, chronic fatigue and probably on the edge of, you know, some depression as a result, you know, it’s just, it couldn’t sleep like melatonin, all, everything is, everything is affected by your pituitary.

It’s huge. Yeah. And, uh, you know, I had headaches and all these kinds of things from it. And um, when I got that taken care of, and then, uh, once I started working, uh, at my next job BioTrust as a, as a CSO and I kind of settled in, um, I started like really getting dialed in on my workouts, on my nutrition. Um, you know, just making my health more of a focus, um, probably turning 40, you know, like, cause I’m, I’m 42 now I’ll be 43 in June. And, uh, I think, you know, around that time, like, it was like, all right, let’s, let’s, you know, get things dialed in that of like swinging back and forth and, you know, fit to fat to fit. Right, exactly. So I can kind of do that back and forth, like, like, uh, like you did. I mean, I could really have pretty dramatic swings, like, you know, 60, like, you know, whatever and you know, six months, but, um, you know, like that, that does get old and now I, you know, I appreciate feeling good and you know, I work out, um, I make time to work out, um, six times a week, sometimes twice a day.

Um, just because I feel good. I like, uh, the stress relief of it. I like being in great shape. I like, you know, when I walk around, I feel light on my feet. You know, I still want to be athletic. I play basketball, I play volleyball. Um, and all that stuff matters to me. It’s like, I’m thinking about where I’m going to be in not only with my investments and my career. And you know, when you buy things like life insurance and all this, like, you know, you start thinking about things differently. I do have a wife, I do have pets and a house and all this kind of stuff. And, and it all matters to me like where I’m going. So you start making differently instead of like living for today, you start living for tomorrow and you appreciate today. Um, so I’m just taking care of my body.

You know, I’m much more focused on my diet. It stays pretty regimented day in, day out. I take my supplements, you know, I, I work out every day. I hit, I hit my career every day and do a good job and I have energy for my career. Um, you know, it’s just what you make time for. And, and, you know, I need to stay passionate. I need to stay focused. Um, I’m a high achiever, I believe, you know, like I listen to Tim Ferriss and, you know, people like that and biohackers like Ben Greenfield and Dave Asprey and all that. And I, you know, I take everything I can from those guys, but, you know, it’s, it’s a lot of it’s about mindset and, you know, taking care of your body. So that’s what I’ve been doing.

Yeah. Okay. One last one last question before I let you go, cause we’re run out of time here, where do you see the future of the supplement industry going? Right. I mean, you know, how many more whey proteins can you make and BCAs and pre-workouts, you know, uh, where do you see, like in the next five to 10 years, is there a shift of where ingredients are headed towards, or different new products where the supplement industry, you know, we’ll be, you know, going down a different path or is it just going to be pretty much the same stuff, just repackaged or relabeled differently, totally different path, totally different.

I think you’re seeing more, um, novel forms, um, that things aren’t just coming in capsules, you know, they’re coming in, be lits and oil and capsules they’re coming in. Certainly there’s been powders, but, you know, ready to drink and gummies and chocolates and foods, you know, foods or some like bars are now containing supplements and, you know, different things that it’s a whole new world when it comes to that stuff. But you’re also seeing things like transdermal patches and gels and, you know, things that are just like completely outside of the box that, um, you know, there’s, there’s a lot of, of that coming. I think people are tired of just taking pills or tablets. Um, so that’s one, I think, um, you know, designer nutrition, where things are actually made for your epigenetics, uh, and like where you’re at at that specific moment in terms of your, uh, chromosomal DNA testing, you know, like with a 20, 23 in me, uh, but also, you know, like where your blood levels are at.

So, you know, now you can say, okay, my full aid is at this level, but I also know that I have this mutation, uh, you know, where I can’t properly convert, you know, full eight to five methyltetrahydrofolic, which does happen to a lot of people. So I need to take this active form at this dose. And, you know, you’re getting like literally engineered nutrition. I think it’s hard to do on a mass scale, but I think we’re going to see things move that way that, um, the, the manufacturing machinery is going to be so highly computerized. And it’s going to be tied to your information. That’s coming from a wearable, you know, a smart device. That’s literally transferring this information, you know, through the airways, over to this manufacturing facility. And then, you know, you know, two days later you get your, your pills that are made just for you based on where you’re at that day.

Hm. Interesting. Yeah. That sounds super high tech super futuristic. Yeah. Well, you know, if you know where the technology’s at, and as far as like, I mean, look at like Elon Musk’s facilities, right? Like for Tesla, like there’s literally like a massive warehouse, like think of like the size of like bigger than a Walmart or a super Walmart. And there’s one guy there’s one guy in there and he’s just watching all these robotic arms do all this stuff, you know? And so it’s, it’s a, it’s a new world and we’re moving to like, literally speaking of Tesla, like, you know, driverless cars, right? Like, so you’ll just be sitting in your cars and just, you know, like working on your laptop or, you know, whatever it is you’re doing. And, you know, most people won’t be driving within 10 years, you know, you’ll just be going down the road and getting stuff done or, you know, interacting with your friends or whatever it is.

And, um, you know, it’ll be a weird thing to think about, like driving is going to be like some hobby that, you know, people do, or like go to some, you know, special like racetrack to like, you know, the rich people go drive their cars and it’s a weird thing, but I think that’s where everything’s going is, is that designer nutrition, you know, because, you know, KIDO may be perfect for me, but maybe it’s not for this person. And you know, all these allergies and intolerances and, um, you know, different exposures that you might have to, to toxins that are, that are just related to where you live geographically. I mean, all of that will be taken into account and you’ll get, you know, the sun exposure that you have, maybe it’s too much, maybe it’s too little, you know, all of that will be taken into and you’ll get, you know, tailored, tailored products, you know, cosmeceuticals, that’s another huge area that’s coming.

Um, really big is cosmeceuticals. Um, you know, people are starting to care a lot about taking care of their skin. And, um, that’s a big one, like where they’re putting ingredients. Like I was reading about a Marine algae that’s, um, really effective at, uh, you know, protecting your skin from sun damage and, you know, more effective than some of the chemicals that have been put in these products that are potentially harmful, um, that have been used for years. So, um, a lot of that stuff is, is getting a very significant traction, you know, shampoos and, you know, people are buying like toothpaste, that’s fluoride free and, you know, uses cinnamon and, you know, earth for tall and all this stuff. And, you know, stuff like that. I think that’s where the future is. You’re going to see just healthier and healthier products that are, you know, and these companies that are held accountable, because people are getting smarter by listening to podcasts like yours, you know, seriously, like this stuff.

Like, I mean, there wasn’t places to get information like this 10 years ago, and now people are becoming advocates for themselves and they’re demanding stuff. I mean, how much are you seeing like, like places like have organic foods now, or, you know, a non-GMO this or that, you know, like Chipotle or, you know, all these places, like it’s, it’s a big deal and customers are demanding it. And you know, these companies have to cave, you know? Right. They have to like say, well, you know, like they’re not going to buy our products anymore. You know, all these cereal companies can’t do artificial colors anymore. Right. You know what I mean? It’s because people demanded it and that’s really the direction things are going.

Yeah. Wow. That’s a great way to end the podcast right there. That was perfect. Cause you know, I, you know, I’ve asked a few different people that question and that’s probably the best answer I’ve heard so far because it’s not just the supplement industry, it’s all industries moving forward and there’s so much newer technology and the people are getting smarter because there’s more access to, to facts, you know, through the internet now it’s, it’s just so easy to access this information through other other means, you know, that weren’t available. Like you said, 10 years ago, like podcasts. I mean, how easy is it just, uh, you know, when you’re driving or you’re, you’re, you know, grocery shopping is put in a podcast really quick and all that information is uploaded almost, you know, not as quickly as the matrix, but it’s like, boom, you have an instant access to almost any topic you can think of is that the it’s at your fingertips. Right. If you’re interested in game of Thrones, you put that in the pocket, there’s podcasts about it. Right, right.

Yeah. That is super cool.

It’s so interesting. But, um, yeah,

You got to trust the sources though. Like that the fit is one you can trust.

Yeah. And I think people will start to, you know, just like other companies, like what companies can you trust? You know, they’ll start to, you know, the more educated they become. They can weed out the ones that, you know, aren’t reputable. But, um, anyways, Sean, thank you so much, man. A wealth of knowledge and I’m really glad and happy that you came on, walked to come. Why would that be back around again in the near future? There’s so much other stuff we could talk about, but I appreciate you talking about supplements and your, and your journey as well. And thank you for what you do to a man. I think people are going to want to reach out to you, um, and just kind of, uh, find out what supplements you take. Exactly. So, uh, where can people find you online, your website, your social media, all of that. Yeah. Uh, zone halo.com. Uh, you can find my LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, uh, all that kind of stuff there. Um, at zone halo, um, you know, you can look that up on Instagram and Twitter and um, yeah. The zone halo.com is probably the best place to find everything about me. All right. Well, thanks again, Sean. Really appreciate it. See you, man.


Thank you guys so much for listening to today’s episode with Sean Wells. I really hope you learned something from this, just like I did. Um, if you did, please, if you feel, if you feel like it, please leave us a review on iTunes. Please subscribe to this podcast as well so that you don’t miss any episodes and share it with your friends and family. If you feel like they could benefit from the knowledge that is passed on through this podcast. Also, if you don’t mind, please show our sponsor some love. We wouldn’t be able to do it without our show sponsors. So check out organifi.com. Use my code fit to fat, to fit for 20% off of their powdered greens, which is by far one of the best tasting greens out there. Also check out four Sigmatic, FIU, R S I G M a T I c.com for slash fit for 10% off of their magic mushrooms. Add their stuff to your coffee. Your brain will. Thank you. I promise you. And then last but not least DNX bars, these magic meat bars, which are delicious grass, fed beef, highest quality ingredients, all organic fruits and vegetables in them as well. Um, you can find those on Amazon prime or you can check out their website to find out if there’s at any stores near you, DNX bar.com. Thank you guys. Once again. We’ll see you guys back here next week on the fit feds fit experience podcast.

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