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2017 GNC Convention Live Supplement Seminar Transcript

An innocent question about creatine dosing opens a can of worms about how to fix the supplement industry through education.

2017 GNC Convention Live Supplement Seminar Transcript

Note: This tutorial video was recorded as a live Facebook event. The text below is an edited transcript of the tutorial intended to provide members with a convenient means of referring to and further researching the topics and content detailed in the video.


On Creatine Dosing

Question: If I don't take a full dose of creatine, will I still get some of the benefits?

You see, here’s the thing—and this is true for many other supplements, too—with creatine, there’s basically a “minimum effective dose.” And if you're not at that dose, it doesn't mean you're going to get a little bit of the results—you're just going to get nothing. You're taking nothing.

So an underdosed pre-workout in creatine is basically providing zero creatine. It should be taken off the label. Literally, taken off the label. That's why people are getting results—it's not because these are magic. It's not magic, it's just the right doses.

From Academic to Educator – Why I Founded JYM Supplement Science

But it's magic because nobody else would do it. Why wouldn't anyone else do this prior to me? I mean, really do it—and do it effectively. Why? Because you can't make money, right? That's what everyone told me.

For those of you who don't know my background I have a Ph.D. in exercise physiology, mainly studying—I've studied many different areas, from female physiology for the Department of Defense, heat physiology, altitude, cold, muscle damage, biochemistry of exercise, gluconeogenesis—but what I really got into was the gene influence of exercise and nutrition. That's where everything happens. Everything.

Everything that we put in our mouths, everything that we do—I'm turning genes on and off right now. That's what controls everything, and so I wanted to know how exercise and nutrition affect—and supplements; supplements do. Do you know the main way that green tea extract works for fat loss is by turning on genes that are involved in fat metabolism? They literally activate genes.

So I was a research scientist, and then I left Yale School of Medicine—that's where I did my postdoctoral, in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology—to work for Joe Weider. So I told all my colleagues, "Hey, I'm going to work for some fitness magazines."

"You're leaving Yale School of Medicine? You've got a career in academia here." I know this is—I'm coming full circle. This is the reason I got into science. I'd been reading muscle magazines since I was 4 years old because that's what my dad did.

As long as I could remember—my earliest memories involve trying to do more pull-ups or push-ups, or lift heavier weight, or run faster. Been doing that literally all my life. So it was fine for me to leave academia because now I could bridge the gap between real science and how to apply it, so we can really get real results.

But the magazines, I was telling people how to do that—and they loved it because they were getting results. My programs—they got results from my programs and my tips, and my diets, and when I told them how to supplement and take this many branched-chains, and this much creatine at this time—they got results.

But there's a problem: They couldn't buy those products. If I'm telling them to take this much creatine, beta-alanine, betaine, branched-chains, caffeine before every workout..."Where can we get it, Jim? We can't get it." Most of the products wouldn't even tell you what's in there.

So I made my own formula that they followed, and we all made it, drank—those formulas that you see were written in Muscle & Fitness a decade ago in one of my articles, and multiple articles on Bodybuilding.com.

So they started taking it, and it worked. That's why, when I launched Pre JYM, we had instant customers—instant, overnight customers—it literally sold like that. Bodybuilding.com had never seen anything like it in their history. Why? Because people were already making it. Now they don't have to make it—and it tastes good, finally.

You know what it tastes like, adding unflavored branched-chains and unflavored creatine hydrochloride, beta-alanine, in a shaker cup and drinking that? It's horrible. But because it worked—and everything I've told them worked—and I've never done anything but tell them the truth for them to get results; that's the way our brain works. It's the results.

It’s Not about Products—It’s about Education

And we can create an entire world of JYM Army—not JYM Army just buying JYM—I don't even push these products on people. I push the education of these products. This [Post JYM Fast-Digesting Carbs] is a bottle of sugar, basically, right? To anyone, this is sugar—it's dextrose. What's so special about dextrose? "Why? This is sugar, Jim."

What is blood sugar? It's called glucose. Well, dextrose is another form—this is glucose. This is the food form. It's the exact same structure as our blood sugar. So when you eat this, your body doesn't have to do anything to it, it goes right to the muscles, and it refuels your muscles far quicker.

And that's important also because when you have a lot of carbs—fast-digesting carbs—you get an insulin spike, and after workouts you want creatine and carnitine to get into the muscles—and the only way it'll get into the muscles is with insulin.

Fructose—what's the difference between fructose and glucose? It's a completely different structure. Fructose is basically trans fat. It's the same deal—the body doesn't know what to do with it. It's a different structure, it has to convert it into glucose in the liver. And the stuff that doesn't get converted into glucose gets converted into fat—and then the fructose that doesn't get converted into fat gets sent into the bloodstream where it wreaks havoc.

Research now shows that it actually directly influences genes in the brain that are associated with depression and other brain disorders. Fructose. And when it gets inside cells it mucks up the functioning of the cell. It's not good.

That's why I recommend dextrose—but I don't tell them that they have to drink this. You can get it elsewhere: Gummy bears. Would you rather eat gummy bears? I would. I'm point blank with them about that. This is the one product I probably rarely use. I mean, I use it, but I'd rather eat my carbs—and I tell them that. But I tell them why they should have this, and if they don't want to use this, that way they can get it somewhere else.

Education. We have to educate them. It's our responsibility. Anybody who's peddling nutrition products—especially dietary supplements—has a responsibility to educate the consumer on how to use them accordingly with a smart diet. It's not only a responsibility, you should want to so that they can get better results.

The Problem with the Supplement Industry

But does anybody want results? Apparently not. I mean, nobody wants to give results—they just want to make a quick buck. But does that get return customers? Does that grow the industry? What does that do? It ruins the industry. It literally ruins the science of supplements and what they're capable of being and doing. They're medicine.

We wouldn't even have aspirin if it wasn't for supplements. Traditional Chinese medicine, Ayurvedic medicine, plant extracts—aspirin. We were chewing white willow bark, that's how we know about aspirin. In white willow bark, it's a supplement; when you make that same chemical in a lab, it's now a drug.

But a drug is effective, but a supplement isn't. Well, why was it effective once? Because we've allowed the science to be watered down. We've allowed the consumer to be fed products that don't work, and literally push them away from the industry.

Do you know how many people come to me on social media and tell me I'm full of shit? "Why are you peddling this crap?" Are you reading what people are saying about the "crap"? Are you actually reading and seeing—they're getting results. But people are so skeptical. They should be, because they've been fed shit products that don't work.

Of course supplements don't work—they're right. They're absolutely right. And now I have to win them back. And the only way we can do that is to show them how they can work, is to prove to them. That's why I have this line.

Consumers Deserve Clarity, Not Confusion

But I'm not telling you that you should be peddling my supplements—you should be educating your consumer on why maybe he wants fast carbs after a workout. Why don't you want calcium in your multivitamin? Because it interferes with the uptake of so many other micronutrients that it's harmful when you're taking it at the same time as other micronutrients.

And guess what? You know what the research now, on calcium, is finding? That not only may the supplement form—calcium citrate, carbonate—be less effective than the form that comes from milk, the naturally occurring—but it might actually be harmful for us. Where do you get calcium if you're not getting it in my multivitamin? You're getting it in my protein: 325 mg in every scoop—from milk.

This is a system. The rest of the industry's pushing skews. "Pre-workout. Well, it's not selling, let's make another pre-workout. Now we're selling two pre-workouts." Why do you have two? Am I supposed to take both? Do I take one this day and one that day? How confused do we make a consumer? How confused can we make them? We're pushing them away.

We're literally pushing them away, and forcing them to never come back. "Don't ever come back here, you'll never get any help in this industry. Supplements won't do you any good. Take this shit product. Goodbye, I'll never see you again." Why do we want to do that?

Education is the Answer

You've seen the people who know what supplements can do for you, right? You've seen it. We could create an entire world by simply educating and getting the science back. That's why I'm doing things like the 5 Pillars of Supplementation—if you look at your pamphlet, you can see a representation there.

It's a way to bring science back. A conceptualization—it's a paradigm of good manufacturing processes. And then on the flip-side, the consumer can use that. You should be buying supplements based on this—based on the ingredients, based on the dosing.

What does that mean? That means don't buy proprietary blends. It's a red flag. Dosing—it's important. Timing. Are they educating you? Really, the most critical point of that paradigm—that illustration—is the bottom, the nutrition. That's your foundation. Before they can start using supplements to get those results they need to have a solid nutritional foundation.

If you're selling supplements, you not only should want to educate them but you have a responsibility to educate them first before you're telling them, "Take a protein powder." People come to me and say, "You know I'm really having trouble gaining muscle mass, should I have more protein around my workouts?" I don't know, what does your diet look like? A supplement isn't the answer—without first looking at your diet.

So we have to educate them. It's our responsibility. And when you educate you create a smarter supplement consumer who can use supplements, and they're going to keep coming back. And you know what else they're going to do? They're going to regulate the industry for us.

I'm trying to make proprietary blends the bastard child of the industry so that people stop buying it, and when they stop buying it they'll stop making it. That's why trans fats and high fructose corn syrup are being taken out of the food industry. It's not the food scientists saying, "Hey, we should make healthier products," they're going "Nobody's going to buy our product!"

That's how we win: We educate the consumer—against concentrates, proprietary blends, protein spiking. It's the only way it's going to go away, is when people stop buying. Education.

As a matter of fact, I want to say hi to the JYM Army. We're doing a live session right now so that they can see what this is all about. This is full transparency. This is what transparency is like, and accountability—you know, the world is changing.

What the consumer expects from a person and a brand is completely different from ten years ago. If you're not willing to be here answering their questions? You're done, because you know what? They deserve the answers.

And you should want them to get the answers, because they'll get better results with your programs, with your advice, with your products. It's being responsible and accountable. And the nice thing is, with social media today we can do that. That's why it's a changing world—it's great because we can educate so much easier now.

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