“What am I supposed to eat? How can it be that every beast, every fish, every insect—every other critter on the face of the planet—can figure this out so easily, and yet here we are, still wondering?”
What’s it like to traipse the far outreaches of the globe in search of the the world’s greatest edible food sources for optimal health?
Meet the Indiana Jones of Superfoods.
This week my friend Darin Olien joins me to share insights and wisdom from his extraordinary adventure-based experiences as a widely recognized exotic superfoods hunter, wellness advocate & environmental activist.
Darin’s passion was seeded early. Attending his father’s lectures on agricultural business at the University of Minnesota birthed an early appreciation of whole food nutrition. But it wasn’t until a football injury sidelined a frustrated young Darin that his curiosity in the relationship between food and health begin to truly take root. A curiosity that began with a simple question:
There must be a better way to heal myself.
The intrigue that evolved from that initial query has been an ongoing, twenty-year plus quest for better, more natural pathways to ultimate wellness. A journey that led Darin to study exotic, indigenous herbs and superfoods from every imaginable port of call across the developing world. Communing with thousands of rural farmers, growers and manufacturers in remote communities across Peru, Bhutan, the Amazon, the Himalayas, the South Pacific, Latin America and Asia, Darin now shepherds high-quality, fair-trade superfoods and herbal commodities to market through his company, Darin’s Naturals.
Perhaps best known for his work with fitness company Beachbody, Darin was instrumental in the development and ongoing formulation of the wildly successful whole-food supplement, Shakeology. He chronicles his experience in his new book Superlife: The 5 Forces That Will Make You healthy, Fit & Eternally Awesome – as well as on his website Superlife.com – where he demystifies health, fitness, nutrition, and longevity into simple daily actions designed to promote life-long wellness.
What is most intriguing to me isn’t just that Darin is a respected authority on the healing potential of food. And it isn’t just that he has been instrumental in introducing these so called superfoods to western consumers. What is most interesting is his commitment to do it right. A deep rooted responsibility to fairly, sustainably and transparently support the grower communities and their long-term interests.
Ripped and Malibu sun kissed, Darin more than resembles a plant-based version of his friend and workout buddy Laird Hamilton. So it would be natural to presume he has always been a model of health and fitness. But that presumption would be misplaced. Because for Darin it wasn’t always this way. Like all of us, Darin has faced many challenging and relatable life obstacles on his path to living what I think is fair to characterize as his best, most authentic superlife.
At the same time, the term superfoods is prone to cavalier overuse. Are these foods truly “super” or is it all just exaggerated marketing hype?
This is a conversation that explores that issue and so much more.
I sincerely hope you enjoy this exchange with a man who exudes positive energy, passion and enthusiasm for health. I look forward to your thoughts in the comments section below.
Peace + Plants,
Thank you to this week’s show sponsors:
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Production, music & sound design by Tyler Piatt. Additional production by Chris Swan. Graphic art by Shawn Patterson.
Background, Context & Reference:
- SuperLife: The 5 Forces That Will Make You Healthy, Fit, and Eternally Awesome* by Darin Olien
- Gutbliss: A 10-Day Plan to Ban Bloat, Flush Toxins and Dump Your Digestive Baggage* by Robynne Chutkan, M.D.
- The Microbiome Solution: A Radical New Way to Heal Your Body From The Inside Out* by Robynne Chutkan, M.D.
- University of Santa Monica: Programs in Spiritual Psychology
- StanfordMed: Telomere extension turns back aging clock in cultured human cells, study finds by Krista Conger
- ClarkeChiro: Slow Down Aging: Preserve Your Telomeres
- Utah: Are Telomeres The Key To Aging And Cancer?
- AltMed: The Benefits of Sacha Inchi
- Esquire: The World’s Healthiest 75-Year-Old Man
- HighExistence: The Wim Hof Method *Revealed* – How to Consciously Control Your Immune System
- MindBodyGreen: Live Dirty, Eat Clean! Why The Microbiome Is The Future Of Medicine
- PsychToday: A Hijacked Brain and a Tongue Held Hostage
Notable People Discussed:
- Compton Rom Bada
- Don Wildman
- Laird Hamilton
- Dale Greenwald
- Elizabeth H. Blackburn
- Carol W. Greider
- Jack W. Szostak
- Tony Horton
- Michael Arnstein
- Dr. Robynne Chutkan
Past Episodes Relevant to Today’s Conversation:
- RRP 19: Brian MacKenzie
- RRP 140: Robert Ostfeld, MD
- RRP 90: Sujit Sharma, MD & Ladell Hill
- RRP 77: Dr. Michael Klaper
- RRP 72: Frank Lipman, MD
- RRP 150: Garth Davis, MD
*Disclosure: Books and films denoted with an asterisk are hyperlinked to our Amazon affiliate code. Any purchase will not cost you a cent extra but will support the show by shaking loose a little Amazon affiliate change in our direction.
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