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SMART: We get many calls from people somewhat confused as to the best ways to use your formulas, specifically, how best to combine various supplements to get the most out of them without causing any problems. Can you help them?

DURK: One combination we'd like to very strongly recommend is RISE & SHINE or BLAST along with POWER MAKER II before you exercise. This will definitely improve results by giving you more motivation to go out and push yourself harder. Of course, if you exercise at night shortly before going to bed, this might not be a great idea, because you won't get any sleep.

SANDY: We've also talked a lot about the use of the combination of RISE & SHINE or BLAST and CHOLINE COOLER prior to lectures and even before writing. We've had lots of good results with this combination, and now we're experimenting with the use of POWER MAKER II and RISE & SHINE or BLAST for this purpose, and we're finding that it works even better for us. It's also important to know that you may be able to get better thermogenic results if you use THERMOGEN TEA along with BLAST or RISE & SHINE.

DURK: That's true, but, before you start combining products, we recommend that you check the label warnings and make sure you don't have any of the listed medical conditions. If you're going to be combining, for example, POWER MAKER and CHOLINE COOLER, you need to be aware that each serving of POWER MAKER contains two-thirds of a serving of choline, the major ingredient in CHOLINE COOLER. If you've been taking two servings a day of CHOLINE COOLER, and you then add three servings of POWER MAKER II, you may get a temporary headache, stiff neck, or stiff shoulders due to excessive muscle tone from too much choline.

SMART: So what do you recommend in that case, to cut down on the total choline that you take each day?

DURK: Yes, that's right. There are not too many people who can take more than 3 grams of choline a day without getting a headache or a stiff neck. So try to limit your total choline to a level that doesn't cause any annoying problems. Another thing, if you're gong to be combining BLAST with THERMOGEN TEA you should make sure you've tried each one separately first. The first time you combine the two together, try a teaspoon of each instead of a tablespoon. This is a pretty powerful combination, not only for thermogenesis but as a stimulant. If you've never tried either alone before taking both servings together, you may suddenly find you feel like you're being launched on a Saturn 5 rocket.

SMART: In one of your earlier books you had mentioned that it was not a good idea to combine ephedrine (in THERMOGEN TEA) with phenylalanine (in BLAST and RISE & SHINE). I take it you've changed your thinking on that.

DURK: What we said is that we didn't have any experience with it, not that it was necessarily a bad idea, and at that time, we couldn't recommend it. Since then we've had about 6 years experience combining these two products and we certainly have not seen any problems with it, provided people follow the instructions on the label, and provided that, if you're going to take them together, that you first try each one separately and then begin with a teaspoonful of each in combination instead of a full serving.

SMART: What about taking PERSONAL RADICAL SHIELD along with one of the other antioxidant formulations like DUAL-C or ROOT FOOD? Can you do this?

DURK: Absolutely! We both take additional DUAL-C and I take about 100,000 IU of additional Beta Carotene and about 10 grams of additional vitamin C a day and 1 capsule of ROOT FOOD four times a day.

SANDY: We put a lot into PERSONAL RADICAL SHIELD, but since it's easy to take extra vitamin C and niacin, we decided to put less of these and more of the other nutrients in our antioxidant formulations.

DURK: There's no real danger in taking extra beta carotene. On the other hand, there are some fair-skinned, blue-eyed, blonde or red-haired people, who, if they take large amounts of extra beta-carotene, beyond what's in PERSONAL RADICAL SHIELD, may find that their skin is turning yellow. This is not dangerous; it's just that some people find it unattractive.

SMART: Another question we get relates to any differences in the amount of products that males and females should take.

DURK: Men tend to be larger and tend to eat more, because they are larger, and they have lower body fat percentages so they lose more calories as body heat.

SANDY: Not only that, but men have more muscle; muscle tissue is more metabolically active and naturally uses up more calories, so men generally need to eat more food.

DURK: In the case of something like PERSONAL RADICAL SHIELD, I think that the recommended dose of 12 capsules per day is fine for both men and women. We do recommend a significant variation, though, for POWER MAKER II. We think two servings per day are fine for women and three a day for men. Women are inherently more sensitive to the effects of POWER MAKER II.

SMART: What about calcium supplements in this context?

DURK: Of course, osteoporosis is usually a problem for women rather than men.

SMART: So you wouldn't recommend it for men? Is it something you use?

DURK: I do use it myself. It's not that we don't recommend it, it's just that the urgency of a woman using calcium is much greater. Far more elderly women fall down and break their hips then men. It does happen to men, and presumably if a man had 1 to 2 grams of calcium in their diet, it would be less likely to happen to them. So if a person is not getting much calcium in their diet, I think they should use it.

SMART: If they are not even allowed dairy products?

DURK: If you're drinking 2 quarts of milk a day, you're doing pretty good in the calcium department, but most people don't drink that much.

SANDY: A recent paper reported the discovery of a peptide produced from casein (milk protein) during the digestive process that was important in making the calcium in milk bioavailable. So, apparently milk has a built-in bioavailability package for calcium, making it an excellent source. But if people are not drinking much milk, and an awful lot of people don't, then a calcium supplement is a great idea.

SMART: Do age differences significantly affect how one would structure a nutritional supplement program?

DURK: Basically, as a person becomes older, in our opinion, it becomes more important for them to take supplements for two reasons. First, as a person gets older, they generally eat less than when younger. Secondly, the gastric juices that allow absorption of nutrients from food may become less effective with age.

SANDY: Also, when people get older, they tend to have weaker defenses against oxidative stress. They need more antioxidants.

DURK: They are both more subject to damage from excessive oxidative stress, and they have less protection left because of age and related damage to their protective mechanisms.

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