Muscle, Organ Meat, and Bodybuilding with Ashleigh VanHouten

Boomer Anderson
November 4, 2020
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November 4, 2020

Muscle, Organ Meat, and Bodybuilding with Ashleigh VanHouten

Skeptical on Organ Meat? Ashleigh and I talk about the dark sides of bodybuilding and the benefits of organ meats and the impact of the carnivore diet (including carnivore fasting). The Muscle Maven’s book “It Takes Guts” provides a great path to enjoying and incorporating organ meat into your diet.

Skeptical on Organ Meat? Ashleigh and I talk about the dark sides of bodybuilding and the benefits of organ meats and the impact of the carnivore diet (including carnivore fasting). The Muscle Maven’s book “It Takes Guts” provides a great path to enjoying and incorporating organ meat into your diet.

Who is Ashleigh VanHouten?

Ashleigh is a health and nutrition author and journalist, speaker, podcast host, certified health coach, and self-proclaimed health and fitness nerd.

She has written for Paleo Magazine for more than eight years, as well as a number of other health publications. She hosts the Muscle Maven Radio podcast and has worked with other top-rated health-related podcasts.

Ashleigh is also a Primal Blueprint Certified Expert and has her CrossFit Strongman and Olympic Lifting certifications. In her spare time, Ashleigh is a nationally qualified natural figure competitor and also trains in powerlifting and BJJ.


[5:40] Ashleigh’s journey into the fitness realm

[14:08] What would you do differently if you can do everything again?

[22:20] Tendencies to push things to the extreme

[25:30] Peptides and SARMs

[30:11] Who is the carnivore diet for?

[37:13] The importance of meat-based protein

[41:48] Why should we care so much about organ meats?

[52:52] Risks from overdoing organ meats


It Takes Guts

US Wellness Meats

Sacred Cow

Episode Transcript

Boomer Anderson: [00:00:00]Welcome to decoding superhuman. This show is a deep dive into obsessions withhealth performance, and how to elevate the human experience. I explore thelatest tools, science and technology with experts in various fields of humanoptions. This is your host Boomer Anderson.

Enjoy the journey.

All right. So shout out today to Clarice Gomez. And she lefta five-star review on iTunes, which made me blush and said boomer hosted thedecoding superhuman podcast. Highlights. All aspects of health, performanceoptimization, and more in this can't miss podcast. Again, I'm blushing the hostand expert guests offer insightful advice and information that is helpful toanyone that listens Clarice.

Shout out to you. I really appreciate you and everyone whoreally just leaves reviews, but also listens to the show. It's it's amazing tosee the feedback. So thank you. If you're like me, you may have had this typeof organ meat growing up over cooked beef liver and fried onions who remembersthat it tastes awful and grandma just wanted you to eat all of it.

And as a result, I didn't consume organ meat for a very,very long time. And if you're like me and you're kind of skeptical about organmeat, well, my guest today is here to change that. My guest is AshleighVanHouten, and she's a health and nutrition journalist speaker podcast, hosthealth coach and self-proclaimed health and fitness nerd.

So you know that her and I got along, she has written forpaleo magazine for more than eight years in a number of other health publications.She really suddenly wrote that this book, which I've used both with myself andwith clients, for recipes, for Oregon meat, and it's called it takes guts. It'sabsolutely hilarious.

And as thoughtful anecdotes on just cultural backgroundsbehind adding organ meat to your diet, and you guys know that I lived in Asiafor a number of years and have a lot of exposure, Dorian meat, as a result ofthat, Ashley is the host of the muscle Maven radio podcast has worked withother top health-related podcasts, like the shrug collective muscleintelligence and paleo magazine radio.

Her podcast has been downloaded more than one and a halfmillion times. Diane. And she's interviewed some of the biggest names in healthand wellness, including Dave Asprey, Laird, Hamilton, Marxists, and so manymore. She's combined her formal education and professional experience inmarketing communications with our passion for healthy eating, exercise,learning and bodybuilding, which is something we get into today and has done afantastic job at all of the above.

And so what did we get into aside from just talking aboutorgan meats, which is something that I do think people can eat a little bitmore of. we talk about Ashley's bodybuilding career and specifically what shethinks people do when they take it. To the extreme that causes them all thispain. We talk about, the fitness industry in general and how people can be verydogmatic.

We also get into carnivore diets and who is the carnivorediet for? Who's it not for and how the carnivore diet may actually help withsomething like a prolonged fast or help mimic a prolonged fast and itsbenefits. Yeah. You heard that one and we finally get into. Oregon meat recipesand how you can make Oregon meat tastes good.

Again, the show notes for this slash it takes guts and enjoy my conversation withAshleigh VanHouten. So today we're going to get very, very deep into Oregonmeets with the muscle Maven herself. But before we do that, Yeah, I love a goodworkout. That takes very little time. And what are my go-tos for that?

Wow. You guys probably know them already. I love the X threebar. I love be strong, but I also love this beautiful, sexy bike that issitting in my office right now. And you guys probably see that in the back ofmost of my podcasts videos, and it's called the Carroll and the Carroll givesme a kick ass workout in two 22nd sprints.

And I'm finished in eight minutes and 40 seconds. I don'tsweat. I certainly breathe a lot. I'm able to get right back to work. And ondays when I backed back phone calls or podcasts, well, That's just amazing. Andso I enjoy the Carol a lot. And if you want to get yours, go to Carol fit AI.That's Carol C a R O L.

Fit and use the code decoding 150 and you're going toget a D. Deep deep discount on a very nice machine. Let's get on with myconversation with Ashleigh VanHouten.

Ashley. Welcome to the show.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:05:15]Thanks for having me. I'm excited to be here.

Boomer Anderson: [00:05:17]Oh. We'll see if you're saying that by the end of this conversation, but

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:05:23]we're, we're going to love it. You warned me that I have

Boomer Anderson: [00:05:26]to give full disclosure to people now because I am very curious person and Iask a lot of questions. So,

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:05:32]I can relate to that.

Boomer Anderson: [00:05:34]So let's, I would love to hear just because you've got a vast array ofexperience, both in fitness, but also coaching people. And I would love to hearjust sort of what brought you into the fitness industry in the first place.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:05:49]Okay. I don't really have like a, a good sort of elevator pitch, light bulbmoment.

So I apologize for that. I don't have like a kind of quicklittle, like, I mean,

Boomer Anderson: [00:06:00]like how, how did it flow?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:06:03]Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it really was more like a million little things that led mehere. And when you kind of look back, it was sort of like every piece had to bethere, but there wasn't one kind of defining moment.

I just sort of, as long as I can remember, I've alwaysloved, strength and muscles. Like even when I was a kid, I, I, you know, I hadan older brother, so I was watching things like American gladiator and world'sstrongest

Boomer Anderson: [00:06:25]man, Jerry American gladiator of choice. Was it nitro? Turbo?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:06:30]Oh, I mean, literally all of them, every single one of them, I just, I want itto be one, like that's still the job that like the calling that I missed, Ifeel like maybe I'm a little too short.

I actually ended up becoming friends with one and I waslike, am I too short for this? And they're like, maybe a little bit. Yeah.Yeah, but I, so I always just was kind of fascinated with, human ability andseeing what human beings were capable of. And I kind of liked, sort ofexploring the outer limits of what people could do and what they could looklike.

And I liked the showing off aspect of it. And I loved justsort of like the learning aspect of it. I, I was always fascinated and I grewup kind of just being attracted to that. That aspect of life strength andexploring human ability. And when I was going through school, I never reallyconsidered myself an athlete personally.

cause I didn't, you know, I went into like my mom put me involleyball or soccer or whatever, but I didn't really play team sports so much.And I think that we tend to. Really put an emphasis on team sports asathletics. And so while I was doing gymnastics for my young age and swimmingand things like that, I never really considered myself an athlete.

Those were just things that I did. And it wasn't until I, Iguess, graduated from university. And I found at that point CrossFit, which issort of in its earlier, earlier stages, like 2008

Boomer Anderson: [00:07:47]ish. This is around the time whenever you work out, made you throw up kind ofthing.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:07:50]Yeah, yeah. That time. Yeah. Yeah. When it was new, And, but I found it and I,I found it incredibly interesting and exciting and empowering at the time as awoman who may be, you know, not trying to like date myself too much, or evensay that I was sort of at the forefront of women and strength because I wasn't,I mean, there were women bodybuilders and athletes for decades and decadesbefore I came along.

But when I was working out in the gym, when I was 16, likein the, I don't know, early two thousands, I guess, It wasn't the sameenvironment that it was now there, there, weren't like you go into a regulargym today and it's more than half women and they're barbell squatting, andthey're doing these impressive things.

And maybe back then, it didn't quite look like that. Sogoing into an environment like CrossFit, where it wasn't like this one freak ofnature over here can, can deadlift twice her body weight or do a pull up. Itwas like, this is what we do here. This is what we learn. And it was reallyempowering for me and really cool for me to see.

and the, the sort of. Look, there's pros and cons toCrossFit. We don't need to go down that road, but for me, it was sort of theconcept of having always having something new to learn and never really beingat the end, like knowing that you can just constantly be getting better andlearning new skills was really, really cool for me.

And so

Boomer Anderson: [00:09:00]just that the CrossFit thing, before we go, because I want to hear the rest ofthe story, but one of the things that I applaud CrossFit for is sort of theperception of women's bodies in particular. Do you think it had contribution interms of sort of changing that perception?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:09:15]Yeah. I mean, I think that's a whole other rabbit hole.

Boomer Anderson: [00:09:21]I think I could have just opened up a can of worms.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:09:23]Yes. I mean, I think that there, what women's bodies look like will always bescrutinized more than it needs to be. And I think that while I of courseapplaud the idea of accepting more muscular women's bodies as. As beautiful andfunctional and, and good.

I still think that at the end of the day, it's still thisjust overly, over concern with what we look like, right? Like it's like strongas the new, skinny and strong as new sexy. And it's like, why is it always haveto be tied into our value with what we look like? Just, just work out. And thisthat's, that is one of the reasons why I like CrossFit, because what it did fora lot of people, was it put the focus on skill.

First, and then it was like this, this bonus that you juststarted looking good, you know, it was like, you go to CrossFit and you startsquatting, you start deadlifting, you start doing pull-ups and you're going to,you're going to be excited over your numbers and your PRS and what you canaccomplish. And then all of a sudden, six months later, you love the way youlook in your clothes.

And it's like, that's a bonus, you know? but I still think,you know, again like that, Over like a concern with how we look and why thatmatters, I think is like a whole other topic that probably isn't going away.but I, I, you know, of course I loved, I still love watching the CrossFit gamesjust to see the specimens like men and women.

It's incredible to watch. but yeah, I mean, that was, thatwas, a really important kind of. Period for me with CrossFit. And that broughtme into other sports that I got into and really enjoy it. Things like powerlifting. And then that brought me into bodybuilding and then a bunch of other things.And I was kind of.

Each each sport that I got into, I learned a lot and I tookwhat I liked and what I learned from it into the next phase of my life. And I'mkind of just accruing all of this interest and knowledge and fun and passion.And, and with that, of course came the nutrition side because everybody knowswhen you hit, I don't know, somewhere in your twenties and you have to startcaring about what you eat, all of a sudden that matters.

And so along with that kind of came, My discovering of thepaleo diet, or approach to eating, which. Always just really made a lot ofcommon sense to me. I think that people tend to, really quickly either jump ona bandwagon or dismiss something based on what they consider to be a trend orwhat they consider to be just sort of like fancy marketing.

And so. Maybe you don't like the name paleo, maybe you don'tlike what you think of the concept of, you know, eating like a cave person orwhatever, but boil down to its most basic, it's eating real food, unprocessedfood food that our bodies are, have evolved to, use. And so that always made alot of. Lot of common sense to me.

And so that was kind of a, really a base starting point forme nutritionally. And that brought me into, going from a more kind of corporateoffice career in marketing communications to moving into publishing andpodcasting and content creation around wellness, nutrition, and fitness, andreally just sort of combining the things that I was doing and learning andloving in my personal life.

And like turning it into work so that I'm skipping ahead.Cause that took years to do. and I'm still doing it. but I'm really fortunatethat I'm able to do that because not a lot of people do get to, you know, turnthe things that they love to do into their job. And I've somehow knock on woodfor now.

I've been able to find that balance

Boomer Anderson: [00:12:40]at one point you did compete. Was that right? As sort of you did a fitnesscompetition? I believe.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:12:47]Yeah, I, I did a little bit of competing in, in powerlifting as well. And thenwhen I was in, when I got into bodybuilding, which was, yeah, really likepurely experimental, it was kind of one of those things where people kepttelling me to do it.

Cause I loved flexing anyway. And I, you know, I was alwaysin the gym lifting weights and they're like, why don't you just do one ofthese. I see, like maybe you could, you know, and I decided to do it and kindof learn some things about my body and diet and, and discipline. And I didpretty well. So I kind of competed for a few years, as long as I was sort ofenjoying it and learning from it.

And I think I did learn a lot of interesting things about.The sport and about myself. and yeah, I mean, I still consider myself abodybuilder. I haven't competed in a few years. I may still again in thefuture, but I think when you, you find that love of just being in the gym andlifting weights and, and building muscles, that's just something that's kind ofalways a part of me, whether I'm competing or not

Boomer Anderson: [00:13:38]in terms of competition, because.

You know, I've spoken to many people, who've gone down thebodybuilding route. You know, Kris, Gethin's been on the show and a few other,people, Wade Lightheart who have gone through and, you know, competed for anumber of years. And there always seems to be this connection with, if I did itagain, I would do X or if, you know, or I wouldn't even do it again.

in your case, when you were competing, There are at leastwhat I know of the bodybuilding world. You hear all these stories of peopletaking things to the extreme. is there common practices that you saw that werejust sort of things that were taken to the extreme and didn't need to be, andif you were to do it again, you know, what, what would you change about yourapproach?

Because you have all this knowledge now about nutrition andeverything.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:14:33]I love that question. I think that this sport in particular can, attractobsessive kind of approaches to eating and exercise because it is one of thoseF especially from the outside, sort of like a more is better kind of thebigger, the better, the harder, the better whatever kind of attitude.

And because also it is. At its most basic of beauty contest,it's a muscle beauty contest. And because it's so subjective and because it's,so again, on the surface, it's very surface level. in terms of the competitionspecifically, it can, attract people who have really dysfunctional attitudestowards their body and towards eating and things like that.

So that of course can then lend itself to, People assumingthat it's across the board, a dysfunctional sport, it's unhealthy, it's bad. Itmakes people have body dysmorphia. It makes people have, you know, just reallyunhealthy attitudes towards themselves. And there is an element of truth tothat.

There's also a chicken and the egg thing where it's likepeople who kind of feel that way might be attracted to this sport. So, there's,there's, there's a lot of issues. I hesitate to say that. Bodybuilding isterrible and no one should do it because I do feel like there's, this Reddit,Rick out there that people love it until they don't love it anymore.

People love it until it doesn't work for them anymore. Andthen they kind of want to crap all over it. And I think that you just have tobe like anything else that you enter into it is. Extreme. Yeah. What you'redoing is extreme. And so there are risks associated with it and you need to bemindful and thoughtful and understand why you're doing what you're doing andweigh the pros and cons and weigh the risks.

And I think one of the things I speak to a lot, because Icompeted for a little while I did quite well. I probably could have, I mean,relatively easy could have done this professionally and I decided not tobecause. There was an element of things that I'd have to do to be competitiveat the next stage that I didn't want to do for my health.

Boomer Anderson: [00:16:26]You just have a cliffhanger right there that we have to naturally delve into.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:16:29]if you're willing to, we want to take, I didn't want to take steroids. I didn'twant to take drugs. I didn't want to take anything that was going to mess withmy hormones. I was always a natural athlete. And, and again, we could go downthat rabbit hole too, because that's a.

Whole huge part of the sport, incredibly pervasive,incredibly damaging, I think, especially to women and men, but again, it'sabout knowing the risks. But I think that one of the things I would say forpeople who are competing at an amateur level, which you can still do quiteseriously and get a lot, have a lot of success and work very hard.

Like amateur doesn't necessarily mean you don't know whatyou're doing. It just means you're not, you don't have your pro card orwhatever. but people tend to lose sight again, of what they're doing. A thingfor, and so they think they get into this bubble and think that it's the mostimportant thing in their life.

And they've got to win at all costs and they have to takeall these risks and do all of these things. And so they end up really damagingthemselves health wise and physically and, and, hormonally and all of thesethings. Right. To win a like local amateur competition where you're not gonnawin any money.

This isn't going to do anything for your career. You paidfor this. You, you set out to do this, to learn something about yourself,hopefully, to, to achieve a goal, to, do something that will make you feelproud of yourself. And instead you are now in this anxious, unhealthy,uncomfortable. Unpleasant sort of scenario that you, you put yourself into.

Right? So I tell a lot of people, especially for women whoare competing at the amateur level, one of the bigger issues that we tend to dois we tend to get too lean. so we think we've got to be lean to get onstage.You have to have a certain level of leanness. You have to look a certain way toget on stage and be competitive.

So if I have to get this lean, if I get this much more lean.Even better. Right. It's that more is better kind of scenario. Whereas in mycase, when I competed, I competed in figure, which is sort of like, I like toexplain, figure as sort of like if a CrossFitter dieted for a couple months,right? Like very athletic, not, not overly large or strided, or, you know,whatever, but it's an athletic kind of, look is what they're going for.

And I would get. Literally as lean as I had to, to, to getonstage and absolutely no leaner. So I was usually in the lineup probably kindof the least lean person there, but I didn't look stringy. I didn't look tired.I wasn't, you know, losing my cycle, even. I wasn't, none of these things thatare very common with getting to lean too fast.

I wasn't having these issues because I did it in a verygradual way and I recognized. That in some cases, the minimum effective doseis, is the approach you want to take. Right? Because if you still care aboutyour health and you still care about enjoying the process, That's what you haveto do when people just don't listen because they, if you're coming from a placeof I'm not good enough, or I have to prove myself, or I have to be the best,you're always going to think more is better when not oftentimes just is not thecase.

and I would also recommend again, especially for women too.And this is just my opinion. I know a lot of people actually disagree with meon this. I would recommend that you seek out a coach who. looks maybe the wayyou want to look who, you know, has trained and has the same kind of values andapproach to health that you do.

And I'm not saying that a woman can never have a male coach,but to me, our physiology is so unique. Our hormones are so unique or the waywe, we react to diet and stress is different than men. And so for me to go getlike some muscle bound, 260 pound pro. Heavyweight bodybuilder, who I know istaking a ton of drugs that I'm never going to take and who does not have thesame setup as I do.

It just doesn't make sense. So like I did the research and Ifound a coach who was a natural professional bodybuilder who never once spoketo me or encouraged me to do anything I didn't want to do. And in fact told me.If you're interested in getting into that road, like we're not going to dothis. And we work together to do it to prep and, and, get ready in the most.

In the most reasonable and, and, progressive way possiblewith that said, I mean, it's still extreme. It's still an extreme thing thatyou're doing and it's not for everybody. I think the fact that I got into itlater, like I did my first bodybuilding competition when I was like 29 orsomething. so I was already.

Pretty far along on my health journey, I kind of understoodmy body. I really was pretty secure in how I looked. And so it really wasn'tabout trying to get external validation. I know it sounds crazy. Anyone wholike parades around in a bikini on stage, you're like, you must be doing thisfor the intention.

And I mean, it was great. It was great to win and to lookgood in a bikini and have a six pack. But I wasn't so tied with the outcomebecause I know how subjective it was. And I think the fact that I just kind ofenjoyed it. And really focused on the process instead of the end goal is what.Made me as successful as I was.

Boomer Anderson: [00:21:12]So yeah. I want to just unpack something you said there, because I thinkthere's a lot of people listening to this show that come from an executivebackground, a high performing background. And with that crowd, you have atendency to push things to the extreme, to go beyond as you alluded to earlier,but it seemed like during your career, You were able to recognize thosetendencies in other people and kind of separate yourself from that.

How, I mean, Kind of just guessed, trying to wonder, likehow you, you develop that if you develop that or is that something younaturally had and how would you teach that to other people

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:21:52]that is so tough? I have no idea. I mean, it's funny because I used to thequality that you're kind of talking about.

I used to use it as my excuse for why. Yeah. I never becamelike a higher level athlete or I never became a pro in the bodybuilding world.Like I always used to say, like, I just don't have it. I just don't have whatit takes to be so myopically focused on one thing and so driven in one areathat I can reach that elite level.

Like I would much rather be like pretty good at a bunch ofstuff and like try a bunch of things and be, you know, relatively competentthan be super, super good at one thing. Like, and I kind of position myselfthat way. Like I'm the generalist like. Come to me, I'll probably have ananswer for you to almost anything, but I'm not the authority in any one thing.

Right. Which is kind of hard to market when you're trying todevelop your own kind of brand and, and word. Right. You're just like, ah, Ijust know some stuff you want to come talk to me about, like, you know, itdoesn't work as much.


yeah, it's, it's interesting. It's like a more, it's alonger route to get there, but I think, I think it's honestly, I think it'smore sustainable and I think it's probably more relatable to people too.

but I think. One of the things that I can say is taking,removing your sense of self-worth, with the work or the goal, like making thoseseparate. So it's not so much that whatever project you have or whatever goalyou have is so tied to your sense of self and self-worth that if you don't dothe most, you're a failure and you're average or you're mediocre.

You're not that good, right? Like, I, I can. I can knowwithin myself and if I do a bodybuilding competition and I don't win, I stillam worthy of love. I still did something really good. I, you know, I workedvery hard. I can be proud of that. and so again, maybe some people would saythat that's not necessarily a winner's mindset, but I think it's definitely amindset that.

That creates a lot more peace, which is important and, andthe ability to, to be willing to take risks, because a lot of people who are sotype a and so ambitious, aren't going to do anything at all. Unless they'reassured that they're going to win or they'll kill themselves to get there.Instead of, I try to have the approach of like, I just want to try everythingand I'm okay with sucking at it.

I'm okay with being a beginner because we're all beginners.And if you don't like something or you failed at something, you still learned.and that's kind of the approach that I've always taken. So I guess it's, it'strying to approach a goal with a little bit more pragmatism and looking at itmore like this is an experiment.

This is a journey rather than this is who I am now. And Imust win at all costs. Right. Easier said than done. But, you know,

Boomer Anderson: [00:24:29]before we transitioned over into nutrition, I would love to just hear youropinion, especially because you come from the bodybuilding world of w. Youknow, people that are using things like peptides and SARMs now as sort of,they're coming a little bit into the longevity world too.

And, and just sort of, how do you look at that? as sort ofthe amateurs out there, or, or the people that are trying to live to one 20 andnow using these things that were once relegated to the bodybuilding world andyou know, how do you look at individuals using those.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:25:03]I think it's interesting. I mean, I've done, I've talked to some people on myown podcast about this emerging sort of peptide world and by emerging, I meanmore so for the mainstream rather than, you know, there's always been thesesubgroups who have been playing with stuff like that.

To me, I don't think it's necessarily good or bad across theboard. I think that what another human tendency that we, We often do isgravitate towards these sexy new experimental biohacks, rather than focusing onthe key, big things you could be doing all day every day to improve yourlongevity and your health, and then approaching these as sort of like end stagetweaks when you've got everything else sorted out.

I feel like, again, there are very few of us who are sosorted out in our life that. The only next step to tweak and improve and takeus to that next step is some peptides or some experimental, whatever, right?We, most of us probably should be taking a step back and focusing on our sleepfirst or optimizing our nutrition or our gut health or our stress management orall of these things.

And I speak for myself too, you know, I, I like to playaround with different supplements or try different diets and try differentkinds of things like that. But I also recognize that a lot of that is just.Really for fun. Yeah. and for self experimentation and that there are still somany other more baseline, less sexy things that we need to focus on first.

So I think that these areas are super interesting. I thinkif you have the money and the resources and the, the passion to pursue it.Cool. but you know, most of us would be much better served getting a goodnight's sleep perhaps first, before we deal with peptides.

Boomer Anderson: [00:26:39]Okay. What's meant specifically for women.

What is the most common thing missing when it comes to womenwanting to put on muscle?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:26:48]The most common thing missing is eating enough protein. Okay. there's a couplecommon issues. I think that I've found working with clients and in the variousgroups that I've done, that we, tend to, be in the gym too much and don'trecover enough.

and then we also at the same time sort of paradoxically, andthis is generally speaking, so I don't want any women who are listening to thisto be like, You're not speaking to me because I know this is, you know, this isgeneralizing. but we tend to not want to lift heavy enough weights. So we'reworking our asses off in the gym everyday, but maybe it's maybe too heavilyfocused on cardio or conditioning, metabolic conditioning that is actually justbreaking our muscles down and, and.

Eating our fat and our muscles rather than building it up.cause we still have this sort of like less, like we have to eat less. We haveto work harder. We have to, you know, be smaller and tighter and all thisstuff. And the reality is to build muscle. You have to eat enough to growmuscle onto your body from nothing.

And you have to work hard enough to build that muscle. Andthen you have to recover well enough that those muscles can rebuild and growstronger and, and, and, you know, That process can happen. And I think that wejust tend to kind of beat ourselves down instead, prioritize going to that gymclass rather than, than resting.

And then, because we're scared of getting big and we'rescared of getting bulky. We eat a salad with six grams of protein in it. Andyou can't, you can't build muscle from that. Men can't do that either. Like Iwas talking the other day with somebody that I, you know, was saying if. Thatthe language is still so different.

I think when you're focusing on women, clients versus maleclients, because if any dude, who's in the gym, who's trying to build muscleand get stronger. Had a coach that told them that they should be doing one hourlong Metcons every day, every day, and then eating. you know, gram of proteinper kilogram of lean body weight, like dudes feeding like 60 grams of protein aday.

Like, it would be crazy. Like, no, everyone will be like,what are you doing? And then for women who we even have a harder time growingmuscle because we have less and we have less testosterone. We're being toldthat we somehow have to spontaneously grow muscle while eating 1200 calories aday. Yeah. I mean, that's not going to happen.

It's just not going to happen. So we have to get a littlemore comfortable with fueling our body, prioritizing protein, animal proteinsources, because that's how you're going to grow muscle the most effectivelyand efficiently. and being willing to go in there and really work your ass off,lifting weights, heavyweights.

That's what you gotta do.

Boomer Anderson: [00:29:19]I can see now why like somebody dr. Gabrielle Lyon wrote the forward to yourbook, because, I can see why you guys get along. Okay. So I want to, let's gointo the, the animal protein side of things, because w I want to talk about thebook, but. When we look at the idea of carnivore, and this is one of those verytrendy diets these days, it's sort of right up there with peptides as sort oftrending topics to talk about.

Who would you say carnivores? Right. For. and I'm verycurious from, from a woman's perspective as well. but just sort of who iscarnivore, right? For who is it not right for? How do you look at that? SoAshley has a history with the bodybuilding community and she still considersherself a bodybuilder.

And one of the reasons why I got into today's technology isbecause I was looking for a tool to. Well increase hypertrophy, but also allowme to do it with very little time and while I'm traveling. And so. Our sponsortoday is the be strong. And the be strong device is something that you guysknow that I'm obsessed with in blood flow restriction training specifically issomething that I find so fascinating.

I take this on my carry on bag. It fits in my backpack and Iuse it almost every single day. My workouts are three sets by 30 reps of just ahandful of exercises. And I'm done in under 20 minutes. Today's a particularlybusy day for me, I'm recording a lot of podcasts, speaking to a lot of peopleand I don't have that much time, but I can still get my workout in with the bestrong.

And so where do you get yours? Go to be anduse the code boomer. You're going to get 10% off and I hope you enjoy this.Let's get back to the show.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:31:11]Yeah, it's a good question. And again, I think that my answer is probably goingto be a little bit more nuanced, than a lot of the people that you might findon the internet.

and again, I'm not a doctor. I, you know, I'm a healthcoach. I talked to a lot of smart people on my podcast. I've had a lot ofexperience with this, but like at the end of the day, and this is something Ipreach more than anything, is that. No matter what you hear, no matter whatglowing endorsement you get about anything, you need to do your own research,you need to be mindful and, and, thoughtful about any kind of new plan orapproach that you take.

because just because it works for a hundred people that, youknow, doesn't mean it's gonna work for you. So, you know, take it, take it allwith a grain of salt and do your own work. I think that carnivores. The conceptof carnivore being, eating animal protein, animal products, only exclusively. Ithink that that is a necessary dietary approach for very few people.

Actually, I tend to think that it is, a great tool as a.Reset for people, as a resource for, if you are trying to become more fatadapted metabolically, flexible looking to reduce carbs or caloric intakebecause you're trying to lose fat, but you want to still maintain and growmuscle mass. If you want to still support your body's function while, Trying tolose fat.

I think that it's a great tool to use. and I think it's alsogreat for folks who again, have maybe grown up being very afraid of eatinganimal protein for whatever reason, maybe because they consider it to be heavyor unhealthy, or they think it's going to make them fat or get bulky or, or,you know, whatever.

I think that it's a great kind of approach to learn moreabout and dabble with that. You can understand that that's generally not thecase for most people. There are certain people who have, chronic diseasesrelating to inflammation and gut health and overt sensitivities to plant proteinsand other foods that thrive really well on an animal.

Protein, exclusive diet, but those people are pretty rare. Imean, they're not, that's not the average population. I think the averagepopulation, most of us are omnivores. That's the way our physiology is created.We do well with a combination of plant and animal foods and it's verybio-individual so my perfect plate might be a big hunk of steak with like somevegetables as a garnish.

And your perfect plate might be a big salad with someprotein on top of it. Yeah. It's the same thing. We're just talking aboutmacros and ratios at this point. so I personally use carnivore again as a, likea reset. So if I go on vacation and I'm eating garbage for a week and I feelkind of gross, what I want to do instead of doing like a five day fast, whereI'm miserable and headachy, and I am not eating and who wants to not eat.

I'll do like a, protein only, approach. So I will just eatanimal products for a few days. So I'm going to get sort of the blood sugarsorted out. I'm going to get the like carb craving cycle out of my system, butI'm still going to be nourished. I'm still going to be getting all of the aminoacids and vitamins and minerals that I need to be healthy.

It's still supporting my body's function. It's stillallowing me to go work out and, and have energy. but it, it really helps, this.Reset the satiety signals because there's nothing that, that, hits that signalthat tells you you've eaten enough more than protein. Like people talk a lotabout keto and high fat diets being very satisfying.

And I think for a lot of people, that is the case for me,that was not the case. When I experimented with keto, I was like, it's way tooeasy for me to overeat fat. Way too easy. Like I could eat this all day long. Mybody's not telling me to stop, but when you're eating only animal protein,you're eating steak and ground beef and fish and things like that.

Like you are not going to overeat that by the hundreds ofcalories. You're not going to overeat that until you feel sick, your body willvery clearly say you've had enough to eat. and I think that that's a greatlesson for a lot of people who have not really paid attention to those satietysignals.

I think, And their life. So, you know, long-winded way ofsaying that, I think it's, it is a, a great tool. And if you're going to beexperimenting with intermittent fasting or fasting or different, excluexclusive kind of like, cutting things out of your diet sort of approaches,this is one of the better ones to do because it's still supporting your body'sprocesses and, and nourishing you while kind of showing you what you reallydon't need.

You know, what you need and what you don't

Boomer Anderson: [00:35:31]need. Anecdotally, I've seen it work really, really well for people with, and Ithink you touched on this certain types of auto-immune conditions, inparticular, anything related to the guts. but again, everybody's individual,right? So some of you, these people, even that have Crohn's for instance, dobetter with other types.

And I, I think that's a, a point that you're bringing homevery, very well, which is like a, let's not be dogmatic about this. There is. Aplace for this. So thank you for sharing and I, instead of intermittent fastingor doing, sorry, instead of doing my five day fast, next time, I think I'mgoing to go to the carnivore approach because that sounds like a lot more fun.


Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:36:09]right. Yeah. Eating is better than not eating at the end of the day. So let'sfigure out how we can hack them.

Boomer Anderson: [00:36:15]Absolutely. The importance of meat, meat-based protein versus plant based.Based protein. Is this purely from a muscle protein synthesis synthesisperspective? I don't know why I have trouble saying that word these days, but,but, or is there some other angle that you look at it from?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:36:34]Well, I mean, this one's sort of a loaded issue too, because there's so muchmore at the end of the day. There's a lot of,

Boomer Anderson: [00:36:41]there's a lot of sustainability people that are going to probably be less thanme on this.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:36:45]Sure. And I mean, there's a lot of emotions that go into this one. I'm like Isaid earlier about the bodybuilding thing.

If we looked at. Nutrition more pragmatically and lessemotionally, we could probably get, make a lot more headway, but at the end ofthe day, it's not always about what is actually best for you. It's what youthink might be the nicest thing to do, or what you think might be the mostethical or what you think might be the least harmful.

And, so, you know, I, I take great pains with theinformation that I put out in the book that I put out, but this isn't a. Meateater versus vegan thing. I'm not trying to convince vegans, eat liver. Likethat's not my job and I, you know, whatever, but I think again, from ascientific standpoint, it's quite obvious and quite well-documented at thispoint, that animal protein is a much more efficient and bioavailable way toget.

Yeah. The necessary amino acids, vitamins and minerals, thatour body needs to thrive in a smaller amount. Like I said, in a morebioavailable way. you know, you see all these things on social media where it'slike kale and steak, both have iron, but it's like, you have to eat 10 cups ofkale. It's like, Again, we're talking about realistic, sustainable ways to getyour nutrition.

And that's why even further from animal protein. And I gointo the organ meat side of things, because if you are someone who, who wantsto maybe eat less, but better Meese. Right. Maybe you want to eat less animalprotein because you think that that's a better thing to do for the planet.There's no better way to do that than to eat, or you can meet, which arenutritionally pound for pound, the most nutrient dense foods that a human beingcan.

So then you can eat less of it and get more nutrition out ofwhat you're eating. so I still, again, I think that people much smarter than menutritionist, much smarter than me. I will tell you that it is possible to,Thrive and build muscle on a vegan diet. Lots of people do it. those peoplemight be outliers and they may also have to work a lot harder

Boomer Anderson: [00:38:43]and I'll take a lot more supplements probably too.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:38:46]We take a lot more supplements. and, and, you know, you do tend to see, I hateto say it, but you do tend to see a lot more people that are like recoveringvegans who have come back to the dark side, then the opposite way. Right. Imean, because yeah, Again, you know, I don't, I would never put somebody down,for wanting to cause less harm to the planet.

I just think that a lot of times we are misinformed as tohow to actually do that. and I think that, yeah, I mean, it's, it's just, atthe end of the day, there might be a lot of like loud voices saying that thatthe world is going vegan, but if you really kind of pull human beings in NorthAmerica, I mean, Europe, maybe too, right.

Most of us still eat animal proteins. Most of us still do.So if we are eating some level of animal protein, instead of pretending that weare not part of the life cycle. And second of pretending that we aren't part ofthis world where everything lives and dies and eats and is eaten let's insteadturn towards the, the, the idea and the challenge and figure out how we can do thisin the most sustainable, most humane, you know, most ethical and most healthyway possible.

And I think that. One of the ways to do that is to. Embracea fully nose to tail diet and embrace making the best food choices locally,ethically, sustainably that we can every day. I mean, that's really kind ofmakes sense to me. Okay.

Boomer Anderson: [00:40:04]So now let's go in a little bit to your book because you mentioned a term inthere called nose to tail.

And I always like to define terms a little bit beforehand.So if you don't mind just defining what is nose to tail? You mentioned a littlebit earlier about. Why Oregon meats are important, but a lot of peoplelistening to this are thinking of their grandmother's liver with fried onions.Right. And they're saying, dear God, boomer, why are you talking about organmeats?

And so, you know, let's talk first, what is nose to tail?and how, like, why, why should we care so much about organ meats? Because otherthan just not wasting the animal, what's the, what's the real reason

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:40:44]there. Yeah. I appreciate that. I mean, I have a big, a big section in thisbook, that is really talking about the history and the culture and thebackground and defining terms of what I mean when I talk about nose to tail andorgan meats.

Cause I do think that's really important. And I think with atopic that is still not quite mainstream, that is still unfamiliar to a lot ofpeople. It is really important to have this educational component. I didn't wantto just write a book that says you should all be eating kidney. Here's arecipe, right?

Like we need to have our hands held a little bit more withsomething like this, because it is intimidating. so for me, nose to tail justmeans eating every part of the animal that is edible. So when an animal isbeing harvested and broken down, like a cow, for example, it's, I think it'ssome, somewhere last of 50%.

Is, actual, like off bone cuts. So like the steaks and theground beef and that the meat that you're used to buying at the grocery store,the rest is hide and bones, which are used and then organ meats. So parts ofthe animal that we generally widely considered to not be the edible parts arenot, not for human consumption.

Maybe they're getting, you know, made into like, pet food,or maybe they're being actually oftentimes exported to places like Mexico,where they still do eat organ meats and, you know, they appreciate that kind offood. but that, that meat, or to me, it's all of them really are the more nutrientdense parts of the animal.

So what we're doing when we see, when we break down a cowand eat the steak and throw out the liver, we are eating essentially whatthroughout history has been the leftovers. So when people hunted and whenpeople, before kind of mass factory producing of animals, when, when farmersand people who had their own kind of cows and chickens, and, you know, beforeit was as, as, large scale, as it was today, people would hunt or kill ananimal and they would immediately go for the heart and the liver before theyhad Google, before they had places where they could look up the micronutrientbreakdown of a cut of meat, they just knew.

Instinctively what the most nutritious part of the animalwas, and that's what they ate. And if there were leftovers, they ate thedelicious kind of steaks and the other kind of yummy pieces, or maybe they gavethem to their hunting dogs because they recognize that like pound for pound,this is the most important part of it.

This is the most nutritious part and we've completely, Lostsight of that. And we've lost sight of it for a few reasons that have to dowith again, factory farming and what's easiest to prepare and transport andstore and all of those things. And these things have fallen out of favor, but,It's only very recently that eating organ meats is seen as something that isweird or extreme.

And it still isn't in many parts of the world and manycultures, many parts of the world, you know, I put this book out and they'relike, yeah, that's great. I do this every day. I eat the stuff every day.because throughout history and throughout the world, when we did have a choiceto waste half of an animal, we were of course eating the entire thing.

It's really only. In certain parts of the world right nowthat we are privileged enough. And I use air quotes on that one to only use theselect few parts of an animal that we want, you know, that, that, that wasn'tan option before. So I'm trying to go back to the place where we were moremindful, less wasteful, but then also not approach it.

Like this is a chore, like you have to eat, deliver. If youwant to be an ethical mediator and you have to deliver because it's good foryou to just choke it down. I don't want people to just choke it down. I wantpeople to enjoy it, and I want people to approach it with like a sense ofadventure. Like let's try some new things and see if we can make this deliciousand see if I can get my friend to enjoy it.

And I'm going to feel so much better and I'm going to learnabout myself and I'm getting to be a better cook. And, so that's really kind ofhow I wanna approach it. It's like this is important, but it can also be reallyfun.

Boomer Anderson: [00:44:30]And to your point, like I lived in Singapore for six years and there, andparticularly in local cuisine, there was always like pig, organ soup.

And you would always find Oregon meats slip their way in andsort of as a Midwest American kid, you know, at first that was shocking, buteventually you get used to it, when it comes to the organ meats. There'sprobably I'm guessing, some sort of range of nutrient density in terms of wherepeople should, should focus.

Maybe it's worth just highlighting, you know, is it, is itthe liver? That's the most nutrient dense do you go right to the heart? wheredo you suggest people start? If they're looking for really nutrient densefoods?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:45:15]Yeah. if, if at the end of the day, you're just looking for best bang for yourbuck.

Most nutrients, right? It's liver. It is liver. I know, youknow, you mentioned you're not the first person to mention. People's sort oflike trauma around their childhood liver and onions. Cause I get it. That's alot of people have come to me with that. But again, it's like, I can make theargument that, you know, We all grew up pushing broccoli and Brussels sproutsaround on our plate too.

Right? Like our parents were like, eat this food. It's goodfor you. Not everything you eat has to be the most delicious thing in theworld. Like this is worth it. And you kind of taught yourself like, yeah. Okay.Like I even say in the book, I'm like, wait. We, we turn our noses up at liverbecause it's different and it tastes different, but like everyone accepts thatbroccoli is good for you.

And you kind of got to choke it down. That's an acquiredtaste. Broccoli is gross. In my opinion, in my professional opinion, I have toforce myself to find ways to make that delicious. And that's not nearly asnutrient dense as liver is. So anyway, I would say. Absolutely liver is theKing. It has, every sort of amino acid vitamin mineral.

It's got B12, it's got every antioxidant cocuten andselenium and it's iron and it's protein. And it's just, again, the amounts areso high that you can eat. Maybe two to three ounces of liver. Like we'retalking a couple bites a couple times a week and you're getting what you needfrom it. So you really don't have to eat.

I'm not telling you to replace your 10 ounce steaks everyThursday and Friday with 10 ounce Lipper, you know, stakes. You don't have todo that. You can have a little bit here and there, there, but I mean, really alot of Oregon's, a lot of them are more nutrient dense than the muscle meat.So. If you can't get around liver and I've lots of recipes and lots ofdifferent ways for you to kind of get your head around it.

But if you can't, you can try other things. You don't haveto have to love every part. You don't have to eat every part. It's really morefor me about sort of when your mind to it and trying things that you'd besurprised when you get past your arbitrary. Kind of fear over something that'sdifferent.

They're really actually quite, pleasing and easy to make.And, and, you know, so things like heart, for example, I recommend heart to alot of people because it is easier to get used to then liver, you don't havethe texture issue that a lot of people have with liver because heart. Is anorgan, but it's also a muscle meat.

So it has that beefy muscle kind of texture, again, like asteak that you'd be more used to. and it's super high in cocuten, which is agreat antioxidant, tons of iron, tons of B vitamins, tons of protein.Everything that you need. and it it's delicious and it's super, like you can doa lot with it.

It's very flexible. Like you can roast it and you can stuffit and roast it in the oven. You can chop it up and marinade it and put it onthe barbecue. You can mix it into your ground beef and make burgers with it.Like you can do all kinds of things with it. So heart's another great option.kidneys, another really nutrient dense one.

I personally like. Full transparency, not a huge fan ofCounty. I still made a couple of recipes and some people like it better thanliver. So again, it's all up to your individual taste, but, you know, there's,there's tons and people aren't even thinking about like some of the smallerthings like tongue tongue is.

Absolutely another delicious muscle meat that people have ahard time getting their head around, preparing it because it looks like atongue when you buy it. And there's some work that needs to be done. but it'sdelicious. If you've ever had a tongue taco at a Mexican restaurant it's fattyand rich and it's like a pulled pork or brisket, it's delicious.

and you know, getting your head around, like some of thepreparation I think is. Another part of sort of accepting that if you are amediator to sort of just slowly in the ways that feel comfortable to you startto become more comfortable with being more connected with this stuff, like whyis it that we can buy.

Chicken breasts from the grocery store and play around withthis meat and not feel any way about it. But if we buy chicken gizzards orchicken hearts, which look like little hearts, that's scary and weird andgross, you know, you're, it's very arbitrary that like this part of the animalis acceptable and this other part isn't just because you're not used to it.

So when I was buying brains and tongues and hearts, I hadsome moments where I was like, I'm holding the brain in my hand right now. Likethis is kind of freaking me out and I. I kept going anyway, I prepared thisfood. I honored it. I respected the animal that died for me to be nourished.And it was, you know, it took some time it took some work, but then when I madesomething and it was good and people enjoyed it, I felt really good aboutmyself.

I felt really empowered. I felt really like, it was like, Ijust did something different. It was cool. So, you know, I want people to lookat it like that.

Boomer Anderson: [00:49:46]Exactly what you say, like you're bursting through your social culturalprogramming that you kind of grew up with in terms of these things, which is,which is fascinating, you know, itself, how you, what's the best way to, Iguess source these because you know, similar given some of your background andwhat you've mentioned about paleo, I imagine you can't just go out and get acorn fed, you know, corn fed cow liver, but what, what do you recommendsourcing these things?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:50:12]Yeah. I mean, it depends of course, on where you live. so I'm not sure exactlywhere it, like most of your listeners

Boomer Anderson: [00:50:18]might mostly, mostly North America.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:50:21]Okay. I was going to say, because in Europe, beer, actually, probably it'sprobably a

Boomer Anderson: [00:50:25]heck of a lot easier.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:50:27]Yeah. Yeah. It's like, kind of, not even the conversation.

It's just like, do you want me to hear is it's good quality,like go to town. but in North America there are still plenty of options. someof the recommendations that I give. Is first and foremost, do some researchlocally, find a butcher shop, find a farmer's market. and if you're fortunateenough and most people do have within a reasonable distance, one or both ofthose resources available, and you can make friends with your farmer and makefriends with your butcher and ask them questions and say, I'm interested in.

Trying some, some new cuts like liver and heart and tongue.And can you get them? Where do they come from? How are they, raised? How arethey fed? Do you have any suggestions for how I can prepare these things? moreoften than not, these people will be happy to help you and point you in theright direction, because they're passionate about this stuff too, right?

And more often than not a lot of these places will alreadyhave it available. Like it's, it's pretty amazing. Even in like mainstreamgrocery stores and stuff where people wouldn't assume this stuff doesn't exist.It does. It's kind of just like hiding on the fringes and you look right overit. Cause you're not looking for it.

So any grocery store you, you go to, you can probably find.Chicken hearts, chicken liver, chicken gizzards, maybe beef liver, bones, beefbones that you can make bone marrow and broth out of and things like that.These things are available. so I would recommend doing that research first andmaking friends with your sort of local purveyors who are going to be moreclosely connected to where the animals are coming from.

And then in North America, there are also a number of onlineresources right now that provide pretty high. Quality grass fed, well raisedanimal products that include, nose to tail offering. So. I don't have any kindof direct affiliations with any of these companies, but I know like I used, acompany called us wellness meats that offers a ton of nose to tail stuff.

They've got great liverwurst, any Oregon, probably you canfind on their website, crowd, cow, bell, Campo companies like that. you canfind online and you can get some stuff sent to you directly to your door thatyou don't really have to worry about going out and sourcing it and, and trysome things yourself.

So, you know, sometimes it might take a little bit more workto source these things, but. You know, if it's fun, it's, it's worth the extraeffort. And of course, then there's like ethnic grocery stores, like youalluded to when you lived in,

Boomer Anderson: [00:52:41]Singapore, but I spent a lot of time in Hong Kong.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:52:44]Singapore. Yeah, I have never been, but I would love to go on a food tour ofSingapore, but yeah.

So, I mean, yeah, when I was having trouble finding somekind of really hyper-specific cuts, I went to my local Asian market. I went tomy local middle Eastern market. I went to my local African market and they'relike, here you go. It's all here. So, yeah, I mean, it's fun. It's like, again,it's a fun adventure go to a different grocery store and like find some thingsthat you wouldn't find at yours know,

Boomer Anderson: [00:53:09]ending endangers and overdoing this.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:53:13]so again, this is something that, you know, you might want to speak to a doctor,kind of get your own sort of blood work sorted out before. Cause I can't tellyou a hundred percent, there's zero risk to anything, you know, disclaimer, butthe risks that people tend to associate with organ meats, I think aredrastically overstated and generally speaking, not a risk for most people.

So, there's sort of the, like, there's a. Iron overdoseissue that people are kind of worried about generally, from what I've read, theresearch that I've read. Most people who are having iron overdoses, which canbe, can be problematic and serious. That tends to be from actualsupplementation, not real food sources.

So I would think that in less. You have a, preexistingissue? it would be very hard to overdose on iron from food sources. things likejust toxin overload. The people are worried like, well, liver and kidney andthey're toxins stored storage organs, and they're, you know, I'm going to eatall the bad stuff at the animal ate.

Right. Couple responses to that. First, if you are sourcingthe best possible, meat that you can, there's really no reason to believe thatthat animal's Oregon's are inherently anymore, problematic or filled withtoxins than their muscle meats. So if you are again, doing the best you can toget organically raised, healthy animals that are not being pumped full ofsteroids or antibiotics.

You're safe eating it's liver the same way, or you're safeeating it's muscle meat. So there's that, there's also the idea that of courseliver and kidney, and organs like that are actual, toxin filters, not, notsponges. So a liver doesn't store toxins, it filters up. So it methylates thesetoxins and helps excrete them through the body's processes.

So these organs are not full of toxins, generally animalsand people store their toxins in their fat. So if you're really worried aboutan animal's, toxic load, you need to be eating leaner cuts and not eating likedelicious fatty. I don't know, whatever like that. That's really. Yeah. That'swhere you gotta be worried, which sucks because they're delicious.

But again, if you're sourcing the best food, you can, thebest animals you can. Again, that's not really a major issue. so I wouldrecommend anybody who, who has reason to believe that they're concerned aboutthese things or has heavy metal concerns or, Would be particularly prone tothese things, whatever, or you're just changing your diet drastically to getsome blood work done, get some basic comprehensive blood work done so that youcan have this stuff checked.

And do you have any issues that you need to be overlyconcerned about or deficiencies, but for the most part, I would say that morepeople are. Anemic are iron deficient are deficient in these things that wouldbenefit from eating more of this rather than the concern of, Oh, if I suddenlyeat liver every once in a while, am I going to overdose?

I don't think that's a problem for me.

Boomer Anderson: [00:55:57]Amazing. Ashley, this has been such an education. I want to transition now intoa final sort of rapid fire questions. If you will. what's your top trick forenhancing focus?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:56:09]For enhancing focus, coffee, coffee, and a good night's sleep. I would say,throw your phone out the window.

I don't have any better answers for you than that.

Boomer Anderson: [00:56:19]What is your, what is, what book has most significantly impacted your life andhow you show up to it?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:56:29]Looking at my bookshelf right now. I've got a couple, can you go back to thatone?

Boomer Anderson: [00:56:32]Yeah, I can come back to it.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:56:34]Okay. Okay. Right.

Boomer Anderson: [00:56:36]And then, sir, what, what excites you most about the health world at thismoment?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:56:43]Well, this emerging conversation, really excites me because this is what I'mmost passionate about. And I think that if we I'm hopeful that we can find thebalance between information overload and being jaded about, the informationthat's being put out there, because we tend to sort of disbelieve or be verycynical about people's motives on the internet.

And that can be a problem. But I think that again, with.This, this current environment and climate and our ability to have connectionslike this across the world and put information out that we feel strongly about.I think that, you know, if we can look at it again with sort of, a positiveapproach and an open mind and a critical mind, we are absolutely in a placewhere we have all the information to, feel better at our fingertips.

And I think that's really

Boomer Anderson: [00:57:29]well said. All right, coming back, because before I asked you where to find youfavorite book.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:57:34]Yeah. There's so many, I mean, I suppose, listen, if we're talking about thesubject that we've been talking about, this book I've got on my shelf calledsacred cow by Diana Rogers and Rob Wolf.

If you read that,

Boomer Anderson: [00:57:46]haven't read it, but I I'm familiar with it.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:57:48]Yeah. It's a fantastic book. It's just, again, it's a very, very useful.Thoughtful well-researched book talking about the current state of our foodindustry and, the approach to ethical mediating and how to do that and how wecan, how we can move forward to make the world a healthier, happier, perhapsless judgmental, place around the way we eat.

I think that's very important. So highly recommend peoplewho want to learn more about that stuff.

Boomer Anderson: [00:58:14]amazing. Ashley, where can people find out more about you in the book?

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:58:19]So you can, I'm most active on Instagram. So if you want to reach out to me,I'm there at the muscle Maven. That's my handle. And I will talk to you.

You want to ask me anything about organ meats? I will answeryou cause I'm that into it. I nerd out on it that much. I will answer anyquestions you have. you can check out my website. It's just my name. Ashley And, I've got podcasts called muscle Maven radio. and then the bookis available wherever you want to buy books, it's called it takes guts, and youcan find it on Amazon Barnes and noble, wherever you buy.

Boomer Anderson: [00:58:52]And I highly recommend the book because that, well, I've been looking for organmeat recipes since my grandmother ruined Cal liver for me. So thank you forfixing my perception of it. And I really appreciate you taking the time todayto not only educate us on this, but to really just. Publish a book that is soimportant.

So thank you, Ashley.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:59:11]Thank you. But I appreciate it

Boomer Anderson: [00:59:13]to all the superhumans list and you're out there having. Absolutely.

Ashleigh Van Houten: [00:59:17]Yeah.

Boomer Anderson: [00:59:21]Fascinating conversation. And I just enjoy talking with somebody who is so openand so willing to talk about even the dark sides of the bodybuilding industry,but Ashley was very open and not dogmatic in our approach at all. There wascomplete open and honesty about the benefits of organ meats, the limitations oforgan meats, and why somebody may not want to go carnivore for a very prolongedperiod of time.

There are also the benefits of going carnivore for certainpeople. As we discuss the show notes again for this one are@decodingsuperhuman.comslash it takes guts. And I hope you enjoyed this conversation. If you did,please go on to Apple podcasts or wherever you listen to your shows and leave afive star review because all of these reviews help so much.

And I promise that if you leave a review at some point, I'lllikely read it on the show. Have a absolutely amazing Epic day and rememberchoose health.


Ashleigh VanHouten
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