How Gut Health Can Supercharge Your Well-Being With Dr. William Ferro

How Gut Health Can Supercharge Your Well-Being With Dr. William Ferro


Curious about how your gut health impacts your overall well-being? In this enlightening episode, we chat with Dr. William Ferro, founder and CEO of Betr Health, about the fascinating world of gut health and personalized nutrition. From his transformative journey inspired by a basketball injury to his comprehensive approach to holistic health, Dr. Ferro shares invaluable insights and practical tips. Discover how inflammation, the microbiome, and dietary choices intertwine to shape your health. Tune in for a compelling discussion that just might revolutionize your understanding of nutrition and wellness.


Key takeaways from this episode:

  • How the trillions of bacteria in your gut influence everything from digestion to mood.
  • Why fiber is essential for feeding your gut bacteria and reducing inflammation.
  • How Dr. Ferro uses food and testing to create customized nutrition plans.
  • How to take control of your health with a simple three-day protocol focused on hydration, natural foods, and reducing chemicals.


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How Gut Health Can Supercharge Your Well-Being With Dr. William Ferro

Have you ever asked yourself the simple question, is a calorie a calorie, or does it really matter where that energy source comes from? To dive into this topic specifically as it relates to health of your gut and achieving and maintaining your ideal weight, I'm joined today by Dr. William Ferro. Dr. Bill is the Founder and CEO of Betr Health, focusing on gut health and personalized nutrition. Originally a chiropractor, he developed a unique wellness approach aiming to overcome the constraints of conventional healthcare.

His work celebrated in over 1700 reviews and integrated into major insurance plans exemplifies his impact. With a background in Biology, Endocrinology and Chiropractic, Dr. Ferro combines extensive healthcare and IT experience managing wellness centers and developing management systems for health facilities to ultimately impact your health for the better. Remember that this podcast is intended for education and perhaps a little bit of entertainment purposes only. Our discussions should not be construed as medical advice. A doctor or provider-patient relationship is not implied or real. If you have specific health conditions or concerns that you need help with, you should work with your individual healthcare provider. With that out of the way, let's welcome Dr. Bill. How are you doing?

I see that you mentioned Dr. Li. I didn't realize this, but you had him on your podcast.

Eat To Beat Disease. I've interviewed Dr. Li a couple of times for this show and I also appeared on his YouTube channel when we did a deep dive into Omega-3. I think that particular video is at over 40,000 views now. His audience has been better educated on all things Omega-3 through my expertise. It's been a lot of fun.

It's great. This is one of my favorite books. When I saw it in your intro there, I said, “I have that book.”

Eat to Beat Your Diet. He does talk a fair amount about gut health and getting a variety of nutrition sources so that we can achieve our best health. I venture to guess that some of what we talk about today will reflect back on that.

Thanks for having me. I appreciate it. Any audience that's willing to listen. I'm willing to talk.

From Chiropractor To Gut Health

I'd like to start the story with learning a bit about you and your origin story. What led you to become a chiropractor and now a healthcare provider in a new way that specializes in both gut health and endocrinology?

I was inspired to be a chiropractor because I was a basketball player and hurt my back. I went to a chiropractor when I was sixteen years old. They told me I wasn't going to play basketball anymore. I got the worst of the worst diagnosis as a sixteen-year-old. I reluctantly went to a chiropractor. I was like, “This is going to be pretty quacky.” New York kids. I was cynical and skeptical. I was feeling better pretty quickly, but within ten days I was able to start moving again. Within 30 days, I was playing basketball again. They worked with me and I said, “This is something interesting I'd want to do with my life.” I went to UMass Amherst. I got my undergrad in Biology and then went on to four years of chiropractic school in Atlanta, Georgia. That's where I get burst into the world of health, fitness, and wellness.

I've discussed this before with other chiropractors on this show. One of the things that the general public doesn't understand about chiropractic thought and the school of medicine there is focused on holistic health and that you were in a sense the guardians of health information as it related to diet and nutrition and how that helped your body heal more so than medical doctors. There's a reason that we've seen a rise, people from this chiropractic wellness perspective into comprehensive health and nutrition, more integrative approaches to health and wellness.

You mentioned a specific injury. I've had injuries that were only helped through chiropractic. I got a side impact crash where my car literally went over a cliff and landed in some brush. My neck would freeze up on one side. The only way for me to get through those days without a lot of pain would be to go see Dr. Jack Knox. He had a specific method of unfreezing my muscles by using an actuator, but he used his thumb and would actuate the muscle and give me relief to the point where I could turn my head side to side, which you take for granted until you have an injury like that. I wonder if you have a particular story or something that stands out from someone that you have helped through your chiropractic and through your comprehensive wellness programs to get back to their more centered health.

Both of us in this case experienced injury and with physical therapy, chiropractic, massage, and acupuncture, that's what we shine. You take an acute injury and you're able to make the person feel good. I wanted to take people from pain to performance. I opened up a chiropractic office in the gyms. As it turned out, it was a great way to practice and a fun way to practice. As an entrepreneur, I grew that one location to 30 locations. We were good with acute issues, but then came chronic pain. That's where I found out that we were really not any better in many cases than your traditional medication approach because the pain kept coming back. It wasn't always due to some acute trauma like we have experienced like I had a back injury or you had a car accident.

What I started to realize is that there was something else happening here. I was diving into diet and nutrition and realized inflammation was the key fundamental factor behind most of these chronic conditions. If I wasn't going to address that, I wasn't going to do what chiropractic was supposed to do, is to make the person healthy from the inside out. That's when I shifted a lot of my focus towards diet and nutrition, probably one of the most confusing subjects of all time for most, then that led me down the road to say, “Is it really about nutrition or is it more about how you absorb?” We always use the expression, “You are what you eat, but you are what you eat, you mobilize, can absorb and utilize and eliminate.” That's what got me down the road to gut health.

Nutrition Without Compromise | Dr. William Ferro | Gut Health


Why Guy Health

As we kick off this discussion specifically around gut health, people may have heard, “You are what you eat versus you are what you absorb.” If you don't absorb it, you're essentially paying for expensive excrement in some ways. People end up spending a lot on nutrition, on dietary supplements, some of which are never really integrated into our systems, but which bear some pretty outrageous, in some cases dietary claims of the things that they can help you tackle, whether it be through testimonials offered on websites, use cases, or essentially offering something in a pill that is harder to absorb than if you get it from let's say, food. I wondered if you could talk a bit about how our microbiome supports this whole process and why it's important to look at a specific nutrient source. When we say a calorie is not a calorie, what that means with regard to our gut health ultimately helps answer this question about why we should care about the bugs in our gut or the bugs in our body.

As it relates to the human experience now 60% of us have a chronic condition and 40% of us have two or more. Our kids are anxious and depressed. Our skin is a mess. We are on all these types of different medications. Unfortunately, the end-user or the patient is usually the scapegoat, “You're lazy, unmotivated or uneducated,” or there's something wrong with your genetics. You don't have to look any further than the farther modern medicine, which is Hippocrates who said, “You need to look well to the gut for the root of all disease.” Here's why. If I have a plant and the plant suddenly stops growing properly, I don't start blaming the plant and say, “There's something wrong with this plant.” I’ll say, “Maybe I'm not giving it enough water. Maybe I'm not giving it sun. Maybe I'm giving too much sun. Ultimately, if I'm a really good gardener, I will look at the soil.”

The microbiome is the soil of which we as plants live in. If you look at most of our soil samples, you would see a lot of chemicals and unpleasant things that shouldn't be there that are degrading these 300 trillion natural bacteria that live on your skin, then like from cheek to cheek, they're living within your digestive system. The simple concept is that all the nutrients in the diversity of your soil is your microbiome. If you compare how much human DNA versus bacterial DNA you have. Ninety-nine percent of the DNA that's on or in your body is bacterial DNA. This symbiotic relationship is incredibly important. Some people call it brain-gut access, but without the diversity of that microbiome, it's almost impossible for someone to completely express health. There are different nutrient sources that feed different types of bacteria and all those bacteria feed off of fiber. One of the biggest key components to getting good back to good health is making sure you have a fiber-rich diet.

You'll see in my background there's an arugula salad with some shaved radish and some tomatoes. All of these have micronutrients contained within that help to support your health, but which also have a fair amount of fiber. Fiber is essentially that building block that the microbiome eats thrives and survives on. If we aren't getting a fiber-rich diet, then we aren't feeding the microbiome the same way. So much like when an infant is born and they are going through the vaginal path, they are getting their early microbiome not only from their mother there but also through breastfeeding.

If they don't have those two things going for them, we see demonstrably that it takes them a while to catch up and be able to digest food without issue. Essentially, what we're getting at here is that it's not our systems that digest the food we eat. It's the microbiome that's present in our guts that digests the food and enables the nutrients to get into our systems. I'm curious, given that whole construct, how you serve the people that you engage with to help them get these things right, to help them look to nutrition first and then perhaps a few core supplements that you know are evidence-backed and that can support their journey.

The first thing I want everyone to know is if you've been struggling with your weight, your sleep, your mood, your energy, you're at your wit's end. You've tried every diet program out that you've tried everything, it's not your fault. The first thing you do is to let yourself off the hook because that is a beautiful rugal salad until it is sprayed with glycerophosphate. Unfortunately it's less organic, you're really rolling the dice that glyphosate is coming in and doing more damage to your microbiome than good. It is important to have a really good supplement source where you know that it is controlled. Obviously, we want it to be sustainable, but you don't want to get any bad stuff in when you're trying to do good. The number one mistake people do is they write off their health as something external.

The number one mistake people do is they write off their health as something external.

Genetics, bad luck, age, but it's none of those things. We have people getting jaw-dropping transformations inside and out by focusing on their microbiome. We'll take somebody in and say, “If you could give us three good days of no alcohol, no artificial sweeteners, look at the lotions you're putting in your skin.” If I'm on a call, if I say, “Where's the hand lotion by you?” They'll say, “It's right here.” I say, “If the first ingredient is aqua or water, well then you know it's going to have an antimicrobial with it, which means as soon as you put it on, you're killing off your microbiome.” The way we do it is we start with three good days, and fuel the body. Guess what happens with three good days of putting the body on its knees, not counting calories, and then getting those extra nutrient sources that you need?

Your body starts to convert fat to energy while you're asleep, your energy goes up, your mood goes up, and every day you're on this, it gets easier and easier because then your brain and your gut start talking to each other and say, “I'm full. My neuro isn't working. My serotonin's being created so I'm not as anxious anymore,” versus dieting and eliminating certain things, that's going to make it worse over time. The source of your ingredients is one of the most important pieces because how terrible would it be if you ate “healthy” for three or four weeks and still didn't see a change, only to find out that the food that was healthy was either man made tons of chemicals and not the right source. The same goes for supplementation. Some of these things are quality and safety is in doubt, and if you don't have a trusted source, you might be doing more harm than good.

Elimination Diet

We should pause for a moment here and talk about a couple of things that you brought up through that. It’s a great answer. You talked about glyphosate and the problems of indoctrination of glyphosate into foods and how you might want to avoid that by going to organic produce if you can afford to do so. Most people can, as long as you are mindful about your product selection overall. In fact, sometimes you'll see them on sale for a lower price than the conventionally farmed versus. It's not always a matter of cost, but glyphosate is commonly used in all of our wheat products and people tend to consume quite a bit of grain. Things like oat products and wheat products that are essentially sprayed with glyphosate. If our audience wants to go on a deep dive into that, have the Glyphosate Girl herself, Kelly Ryerson on this show.

I’ll enable people to revisit that topic deeply. She's deeply involved with the people who are behind the film Common Ground that talks about our soil health and how we can get to a healthier soil base. She was even featured in that film alongside some other notable people. It's important to continue that conversation to go a little deeper if you're interested and to better understand why you might want to choose products that are organic as opposed to conventional.

When it comes to something like a supplement, a lot of what's offered out there as food supplements, as nutritional supplements are in a synthetic form that might be somewhat cheap, that might also not be in its more bioavailable form. This is particularly important when we talk about things like B vitamins, methylcobalamin and vitamin B12, for example. Some people have what they colloquially referred to as the MTHFR gene. We have to be careful in many cases about making sure we're getting sources that our bodies can integrate. What do you tend to counsel people to do? Do they need to go out there and get a test to see if they have this issue, or do you generally come to them and say, “Look here's the smart choices to make? These are the sorts of supplements, especially as a vegan or vegetarian that you could consider?” Generally speaking.

Generally speaking, I say let's start with food. Let's see how your body reacts to removing as many chemicals and poisons as possible. As Jack Olin once said to me, “If men made it, don't eat it.” If it's something in a package whenever you first start with the food, then see after that what your body is now not absorbing and not utilizing. I think testing can be an important part here because if you can clean up what you're eating and start feeling better then taking a test, then you're really going to know what level I'm really at. I'm really a big fan of testing. I'm not a big fan of testing prior to changing the lifestyle because then I know that if you're not embracing the microbiome and the organic movement, well then you're throwing seeds in a desert. The amount of money that you're putting into the next latest greatest pill really should be used for healthy food that's glyphosate-free.

I'm such a fan of the Glyphosate Girl. I'm happy you had her on. That's it. You start with what is the lowest common denominator to get you the best results then once you get to that point, then I think testing is a phenomenal way to go. When I counsel people, I don't try to give them any guidance in terms of, “You have to have this.” You'll know, because if you're doing elimination reintroduction and you're feeling good and you add something in, you should feel it. Not always, but you should. If it's a high-quality supplement and it's providing value and your body's at a place where the brain and the gut are talking to each other, “You will see the difference there.” It’s important to clean that stuff out first, get a good baseline and then when you add it in, you'll know if it's doing what it was designed to do.

You mentioned going through an elimination diet. Do you recommend those for generally healthy people or is it something that you focus on an individual who's confronting a specific health issue?

To me, it's the gold standard. None of us know. Broccoli for one person is great and for somebody else, it's not. I'm not a huge fan of testing for that purpose because in my experience I would use those tests. By the way, everything I'm telling you here is because I tried it with thousands of patients. I'm even ashamed to say that way back when I first knew this, I was doing the calorie counting with people, and I'm ashamed that I was that way. I didn't know any better. That's what we were taught even in chiropractic school.

All of this time when I started doing saliva, poop or urine testing, I was doing the food allergy testing, it was making things more confusing for people. The funny part is when DNA testing came out, and they're still doing this today, and they tell you, “This is precision nutrition based on your DNA.” I've had people retake the test in a couple of months and it gives them a completely different answer.

I would say that for most people, doing a basic elimination reintroduction and well, the way we do it is we make them take pictures of their lunch and dinner. We're putting in their sleep, poop and mood, every piece of data point, our AI can take the picture and turn it into the ingredients. We want them to experience what works best for them. I can tell you stories of a woman who was referred to us by one of the gym chains. We work with EOS Fitness, and she was struggling three times a week with a trainer for a full year eating “healthy.”

If you saw what she was eating, you would say, “That's a very healthy diet.” She wasn't losing a pound. We did elimination reintroduction with her and she ended up losing 42 pounds in 60 days. Guess what triggered food or food that wasn't working well for her? It was quinoa, Greek yogurt and raspberries. That's on every cover of every nutrition magazine that those things are good for you, but it wasn't serving her body well. I think everybody can do well with an elimination reintroduction.

You're preaching to the choir here. I'm sensitive to broccoli and quinoa. As somebody who also is trending towards veganism, I'm fully vegetarian at this point, but I still use some whey protein and I won't turn a salad away if I'm served it and it has cheese on it. I'm not militant. I'll have a cookie with my kids and I'm not going to ask the person who made it at the baked sale if it had eggs in it. I'm not being crazy about it. I'm not criticizing people who are more militant about it. I'm saying for me, this is what works for now. I will tell you that what I've noticed is that when I eliminated animal products, basically meats and most dairy from my diet, my skin cleared up.

My hormones as it relates to my period are flattened out. I don't feel the deep swings and my emotions the same way. My skin cleared up. I'm not getting the same acne or breakouts. I find that I don't have intense cravings around that time of the month either. I went from having a somewhat variable period system. I was on a 25-day cycle, 1 month and then a 28 the next, and it's completely normalized. I'm doing great and at almost 48 years old to still be on that same program where I'm not experiencing any perimenopause symptoms. I'm feeling good about it. Right?

I took an Everlywell test to see how far I was in terms of food sensitivities. It was very interesting to see them come back with food sensitivities that I don't ever feel weird when I eat eggs, for example. I was saying I have a mild allergy to albumin, which is the egg protein. I don't ever feel weird when I eat chicken or beef. It was showing those up as potentially allergenic to me too. I don't know how much truth there was to that for the food sensitivity side of things.

It also didn't show anything with broccoli or quinoa, but that's because I haven't consumed them in a very long time. Even if you do go through the rigors of having a food sensitivity test done by Everlywell, or by anybody else, that food sensitivity test will only compare to what you've consumed. If you haven't consumed something for six months, it's not going to show up. I wonder if that's what you're speaking to when you say genetically somebody takes a test and they find the results are different two months later.

To me, there are too many variables in those tests. I bet there's a scientist way smarter than me on this who could probably prove me different. I'm trying to do what's going to get the member, my folks that trust me to the quickest results that are sustainable at the lowest cost whether if it's a couple of hundred dollars towards testing and whatever else that they're going to throw at it, I'd rather them eat healthy for for 21 days that I find always works. My goal is to do no harm and to stop blaming themselves and give them a different pathway so they can figure out, “This works best for me.” We've had people that will eat chicken from one store, or grocery store and get chicken from another and have a completely different reaction.

Nutrition Without Compromise | Dr. William Ferro | Gut Health


The same thing with shrimp and other things. I don't want to go through the guessing game, “Maybe this test is wrong. Maybe the day I took it I was already a little bit inflamed and maybe that had something to do with it.” If you go through elimination reintroduction, you'll be able to figure these things out on your own very quickly. It doesn't mean it won't change. We've had people come to us who weren't eating a lot of meat and decided to add some in and felt better and vice versa. People took some away, the same thing with people who thought they were gluten-sensitive. After 30 days of the elimination reintroduction part, they realized they could have gluten, but what the gluten they did have was freshly baked. It was sourdough. They found some things that maybe it was the way it was manufactured that was the issue or the glycophosphate that was caked on it. Elimination reintroduces our gold standard over here.

Bad For Gut

If people learn to listen to their bodies, they'll feel generally better in my experience, when you eat cleaner, which means real whole foods that you're not as likely to feel a disconnection from the gut. You mentioned earlier when we were getting started, things like aspartame or other sweeteners that are introduced into beverages and foods, which can disrupt our microbiome. Can we talk for a moment about the things that are bad for our gut so that people know what to watch out for. In addition to glyphosate, meaning non-organic grains and non-organic fruits and vegetables?

The number one thing I think is one of the biggest bios disruptors out there is the stuff you're putting on your skin. Hands down, it literally is getting right into your skin. When they say the first ingredient is aqua, that's a fancy name for saying it's water, water doesn't moisturize you. Water doesn't go into the skin. That's why every time we got into the shower, we'd come out big bloated ticks if our body was really absorbing all that water. It gives you the temporary feeling that it's moisturized, but they're putting all these other chemicals in. That's the one that I think you need to pay attention to. Second is the aspartame and diet sodas. You're fooling your body. Digestion begins from here, from sight and smell.

If you're taking, let's say a Jolly Rancher and it's supposed to be a strawberry, your body's getting ready, the enzymes, the digestion is getting ready to take in that strawberry, but it's not strawberry. It's a liquid chemical. Your body feels like, “I can relax. This is something I can digest.” I think it's fooling the body over and over again. Any chemical, Xanthan Gum, all of these things, these additives that we're putting in, any of those things are now being studied as microbiome disruptors where I was once the quack many years ago talking about these microorganisms, luckily science has caught up and now we can see this stuff in the research and point to poor microbiome health or gut health, however, you want to put it to about every chronic condition that Americans are suffering today.

When we spoke earlier about Dr. William Li, I wanted to touch back on some things that he has shared in the process of interviewing him. One of which is really to reduce our reliance on anything that is generally sweetened so that we get to a point where eating a piece of fruit tastes like dessert, that the natural sugars within that piece of fruit are a treat. What we've become accustomed to is that sweeteners are inborn into many of the foods that we consume and the beverages. We get desensitized to them.

There is some evidence that even these sweeteners which are more naturally based like the glycosides from Stevia or from other things like monk fruit, because it taste sweet on the palate, sending a signal to our gut and to our brain to get ready for something that contains sugars and that that can spike our glycemic index so that there's something to something being sweet. One of the things that I think is important for us to do is to focus on limiting the excess sugars that are in our diets and even the fake sugars because even if it comes from a tree like xylitol or from Stevia, a plant that we're desensitizing ourselves to what sweet is supposed to mean to our bodies and our minds.

Almost every single member that goes through this protocol with us will say in the 1st week or 2 by 10 days, suddenly they're like, “This strawberry tastes so sweet. I started craving strawberries. I can walk past the sugar bowl at work and not want to dive into it.” The brain and the gut, once they communicate, this is ancient wisdom that your body has been designed to do. When I have people on a Zoom call, I look at them and I always test these waters. I say, “Of all you out there, you're struggling with your weight.” Yes, I'm struggling with my mood. I’m struggling with high blood pressure. I'm struggling with IBS, Crohn's, acid reflux, you name it.” I said, “How many of you have actually created your own human?”

“We have kids.” I'm like, “You were able to build a whole human in nine months, but regulating your weight, your sleep and your mood is an absolute mystery to your body. If you cut the inside of your mouth, you don't have to Google how to fix it, it goes to work. We have to get out of the way of the wisdom of the body and not overthink it. I think what you're speaking to here is once the brain and the gut start working together, it will start telling you that I prefer the strawberry over the Jolly Rancher. Same thing with the coffee sweeteners that people are putting in.”

I had one woman say, “I missed my,” whatever creamy choice. I don't know what she was drinking in the morning, but she said that on her birthday, her daughter took her out. She'd been four weeks without it. Said, “It's my birthday.” She almost gagged at the taste like you and I, my gag at Stevia where other people think it's good and the artificial stuff. Once your body's back in balance, it will start to do what it was designed to do, which is tell you what it likes and tell you what it doesn't like.

Reduce Inflammation

You mentioned earlier this inborn issue of inflammation. This has also been referred to as the silent killer or as leading to what is called Type 3 diabetes, which is also known as onset of dementia or Alzheimer's and some of these other disorders that tend to come later in life, but which people even see earlier onset of. If we get our inflammatory markers down, that tends to also be coupled with some lifestyle changes that promote health and promote the body's natural ability to heal and to return to what is called homeostasis.

I have a deep background in Omega-3s in Örlö Nutrition who sponsors and brings you this show that produces Omega 3s that are in the polar lipid form that are better absorbed so that they can get into your tissues quite easily. What we've already seen in vegans, vegetarians, meat eaters, and omnivores across the board is that people who take this supplement, the active Omega-3s over the course of four months can see their markers rise from 3.5% Omega-3 index.

That means 3.5% of their cells contain Omega-3, or of the cell, 3.5% of it is comprised of EPA and DHA. We see them double, get up to 7%, closer to 8%, which is where we want to be. 8% to 12% is what Omega quant, who leads the Omega-3 index in a lot of research says is ultimately the the level where we've optimized our ability to return to homeostasis or balance. They have marked that level as a point at which there's a 75% drop in all-cause mortality as exhibited in the Framingham study, which is multi-generational and going on in the Northeast region of the United States. We have a lot of science already that shows us the building blocks and the things that we need to do to get inflammation under control so that our bodies can heal. It seems that as much as we talk about this, people still aren't getting it.

They always have to feel it. With Örlö, you're talking about, it's a great mediator. We're all coming into this world inflamed chemically, and then we know we're inflamed from our societal pressures, from the constant pickering from both sides of our stupid political battles to you name the fight, we're going to argue about it.

We're going to be stressed out, overworked and not sleeping enough. All of these impact inflammation. In addition, we're getting a barrage of chemicals and pollutants in our environment, the water we drink and the air we breathe. It's a lot. I think that's probably why people aren't getting it because it feels overwhelming. What I'd love to do with you is to simplify it. What are the core steps that people can take to grab control of their own health so that they can bring their inflammatory markers down, get more connected to their body, and ultimately feel like they can make positive changes and work with their medical provider, but be a little bit more in control of their health?

Their mentality has to be with, “This isn't my fault. The tobacco industry bought the food industry to make all this stuff genetically engineered to, we're going to crave it.” I have all these other outsources that are working against me. First, I don't want you to do anything more. I don't need you to Braveheart your thing into this. You don't need Tony Robbins to be in your closet every day. You don't need Oprah. They're all great people, but what I mean is it's within your grasp within three days because what's great about bacteria is it grows fast and it grows fiercely, and your body wants to get back to homeostasis is fast as possible. I hate the word health journey, not, I shouldn't say hate this strong word, but I don't care for it because that immediately puts into, “This is going to be a long road.”

It's not. It's a very quick road. 24 to 48 hours of you reducing inflammation in your body. That's why I love a mediator like the Örlö because a mediator can help them reduce that inflammation. You reduce inflammation, you're reducing insulin resistance, which means you're going to start to convert fat to energy. Who doesn't want to see the scale start going down and their mood start changing very quickly? Add that to all the fibrous food you're eating and drinking the water. You can get back control, or I should say you can give back control to your brain and your gut access within 24 to 72 hours.

I tell people, “It's three good days. If you start doing the other thing, which is counting calories, flipping tar in parking lots, drink chalk shakes, thinking that your health comes from outside, there's something wrong with this, there's something wrong with that and over overdo it, you're going to stress yourself out versus three good days, grab some supplementation, eat the fibrous food, drink the water, get rid of the chemicals on your skin, and watch how fast that brain and gut start to recover, as well as the gut lining starts to recover within 12 to 14 days.”

Some people say it's completely turned over by 21 days, which is why we then do the reintroduction. Let yourself off the hook, give yourself a break, focus on three good days and see, put that plan in place and track it. Track your weight, sleep, mood and energy. Take pictures of your food. Do that over a 3 or 4-day period and watch how much better you feel very quickly, then you'll rediscover your ancient wisdom. That is the most important. It's the most empowering part of this whole thing. People lose a lot of weight on our program. They lose weight faster than Ozempic. Wegovy by four times. They lose 7% of their body weight in 30 weeks. It's not about the weight loss. What it's showing you is that you've reduced the inflammation, the insulin resistance so that your body can convert fat to energy while you're sleeping.

While they're sleeping, their bodies can heal. That's essentially what we're getting back to. I think that there are two things you brought up there that I want to touch back on. Water and hydration. I know that we drink a lot of liquid like I'm sitting here with my coffee, which I tend to drink about all day long. I love coffee, get my chlorogenic acid. I know that if we consume more water, we're giving our bodies the ability to flush out toxins, which often when we're on a weight loss journey is very needed. we need to make sure that we're getting enough. I want to touch on some work by Dr. David Perlmutter. He's a neurologist and neurosurgeon and he's spent a lot of time studying brain health. He's written a book called Grain Brain, which is about the brain.

It’s sitting on my shelf.

Too much consumption of grains and probably larger because of glyphosate infiltration, it does create an inflamed brain. With an inflamed brain we have less of an ability to heal, to return to homeostasis also we're more likely to develop diseases later in life that relate to that consumption. He has written a book called Drop Acid, in which he talks about the consumption of water. Essentially when we don't consume enough, our bodies start to act like camels and how do camels store water? They store it in their fat cells.

If we're not getting enough water our body starts to store water within our cells themselves and then therefore be less likely to get rid of the excess fat that you're carrying all around with you. This can negatively impact your kidney health, but cells at every level in your body. If we get our inflammation markers down while ensuring that we have adequate hydration every day, we're going to be setting ourselves up for greater success. How much water do you recommend people focus on drinking every day? Is it based on their body weight or do you have a standard marker?

This varies widely depending on the person. If someone could be in their 70s and they're going to be drinking a little bit less, they might have some kidney issues. This is not medical advice as you mentioned earlier. As a rule of thumb, 40 to 70 ounces of water is important and your body will respond and tell you when too much is too much. If you're getting up at night 3 or 4 times to go to the restroom, chances are you are drinking too much.

What ends up happening is that when I put some of the programs they're drinking, they're eating more fiber than they've eaten before, they have to drink more water, otherwise they're going to get constipation because fiber absorbs the water. That's why a lot of people when they go on this initially water a minimum of 40, probably up to 70 is good, but even more important than the water is, some people will take a little Himalayan sea salt or Celtic sea salt and put in the tongue because you want to stay electrolyte balanced.

It's not how much water you get, it's how much electrolytes that you're getting from your food because too much water can be incredibly dangerous. Water is one of the most important parts. We talk about converting fat to energy while you're sleeping. We've been fooled to think that we're only losing weight, we're on a treadmill at a 45-degree angle, and somebody's yelling at you. When you're at a state of ease and you have low inflammation in your body, you're burning it at night. That's what fasting is. you're converting it to CO2 and breathing it out and urinating it out.

It's not just how much water you get, it's how much electrolyte that you're getting from your food, because too much water can be incredibly dangerous.

People say to me all the time, “What do you think about intermittent fasting?” I'm like, “You're already doing it. You do it every single day. That's why they call it breakfast. You're breaking the fast.” You can do more intermittent fasting if that's what you like to do. I'm sure there's some benefit to doing that intermittently, but it doesn't mean you have to live your life, in my opinion. You don't have to live your life by that because I want to make sure you're getting enough water and fiber to feed the microbiome.

I'll nod to Dr. Michael Greger's work where we're going to be bringing him on this show as well. He has written some incredible books. I love what he's doing in the world of health and nutrition. One of the things that he brings out in his research is that when we consume food in line with our circadian rhythm, that same meal is eaten earlier in the day. We burn more of those calories than if we were to eat that same meal later in the day, regardless of how much energy we expanded throughout the day. If you're going to consume food with the thought of losing weight and attaining all of your standard markers of nutrition, then having a solid meal in the first half of the day versus the last half can be supportive of a weight loss journey as well.

I encourage people to check out his website. It is He supplies a plethora of information for people. I've done the intermittent fasting thing where I don't eat before noon or 2:00. I haven't found that it helps me to lose more weight. I find that I am able to achieve my macros more consistently if I consume like let's say a protein shake in the morning then I have a broader meal with a salad, maybe fruit nuts and everything else a little bit later in the day then more lean protein at night. I tend to be able to hit all of my major needs for fiber as well as protein.

Even as I've transitioned to a vegan and vegetarian diet, I'm maintaining my muscle mass. I'm in fact building muscle. I've proven since the beginning of the year that even eating this way I'm putting on a pound of muscle in the first 3 or 4 months of the year, which is hard to do at 47 years old and a vegetarian diet.

You brought up the point that I try to make because things are confusing and there's much information thrown to people, “Do this. Do that.” I'm saying, “Let's get out of your way, let your brain and gut tell you what to do and start being intuitive,” like you found out for yourself. You started listening to yourself. There are 500,000 or 1 million books written on diet and nutrition. They're not all wrong and they're not all right. What is better is not better, not perfect. Let's have you go through a short experiment and let your body tell you. We never tell people to count calories if they're not hungry. We're like, “Then don't eat.” If your body's eating this clean food and it clears it out and it tells you it's not hungry, it's got you. Trust it. Listen to your body more than anything, that intuition is tremendous. It's a thing that keeps you alive to listen to that intuition.

Nutrition Without Compromise | Dr. William Ferro | Gut Health


You've mentioned a few times, “Give me three days.” I wondered if you have a protocol or something that you'd be willing to share with our audience of what those three days look like.

Betr Health

One thing you'll know about better is we have people that go through the program. They're covered by Blue Shield of California, Florida Blue and all these different health plans. Employer groups pay for it, but we also have a lot of self-pay folks. Most of the time, when someone goes through the program, they're like, “You're going through this with me.” They give her the protocol and Jill's following along with her and doesn't sign up for the program. I don't care. I want to help as many people as possible. My information is always free. What I find you get from working with Betr is that we give you that personal coach. We have the AI and the community, but I'm willing to share this journey with anybody. This would be a very simple three good days.

As you mentioned, let's say water. We'd first say we want to get at least 40 to 70 ounces of water that day. Check. No chemicals and no artificial sweeteners. Check. None of your coffee sweeteners. You can use cream if you'd like, but as long as it's natural you can use it. A typical morning might be hard-boiled eggs with avocado. Keep it simple for the person. It could be fresh salsa. Then mid-morning they would have an apple and orange or grapefruit, strawberry or blueberries. We keep the fruitless very short to begin with. Highly washed. If you have to use baking soda because we want to get all the glycophosphate off of it. It’s a very simple fruit list, then for lunch, it could be a rotisserie chicken or a mason jar salad. If they're vegan or vegetarian, it would be a vegan or vegetarian and followed by another fruit mid-afternoon and another dinner.

That dinner could be filet mignon and asparagus if you like. The difference is we only use a natural salt like a Himalayan or Celtic Sea salt. When we cook, we only use olive oil after the cooking process, not during the cooking process, not the denature. It’s very simple. There's nothing here. The thing happens is you're weighing in first thing in the morning thinking of pictures of your lunch and dinner, the coaches checking in with you and then the very next morning you get one day you'll see the scale go down. If the weight was one of your things, if it was something else like IBS or Crohn's, you might experience something different. You say, “I can do this again.” They do something similar. The second day they get a payoff. On Wednesday they get a payoff.

By the fourth day I say, now here's your choice, “You can finish the three weeks of elimination part of the high and keep going, or you can quit, we'll give you a high five and we'll give you money back.” “No, I'm going to keep going.” It's their choice and they start doing well. Once they get through that first weekend, they're there. If they have trouble preparing their food and meal prepping, we have a nationwide meal delivery service. We send them fresh food. I'm not in the business of selling or getting people fresh food. I don't want to have a food program. It made it easier for people we're a pay-for-performance program, which means we only get payment if we're getting the outcomes for the employer groups of the health plan.

Take A Break

As we prepare to wrap, I always like to offer the audience a time, a moment with that guest. Dr. Bill, if you have closing thoughts or any advice that you want to give people generally speaking about how they can achieve their best health or their best selves, I'd love to know it from you.

Give yourself a break immediately, please. Take a break and you do not need anything more. You're whole incomplete. This world has been incredibly toxic. Our rainwater's no longer safe to drink. Kids are being exposed to 256 chemicals. If you have a family for yourself, this is a movement towards ancient wisdom. First, take yourself off the hook. I know initially you're going to be cynical and skeptical. You've tried everything. I get it. Understand your cravings and all the things that have pulled you off of. Getting your health back on track has always ended in failure and that's because you've been going uphill. You've been working against the body then with the body.

Just take a break. You do not need anything more. You're whole and complete.

Give yourself a break. Say, “I'm going to start this Monday.” Give a prep weekend where you can prep everything, some real self-love, chop some vegetables, make some mason jar salads, and take it easy for three days, no stress, no counting the calories or weighing stuff. Watch how quickly your body responds. Your body is amazing and you deserve it. It's your birth light to feel good. It should not be a struggle. It should be effortless. It should not be a challenge. You don't need to go get attention for suffering and talk about how a piece of chocolate cake is chasing you around the kitchen. That's because your body's out of balance and your body can get back in balance very quickly without a lot of fan and roughing it.

I think that if they do follow a few simple days, it's easy on the tail end of that to say, “I feel better.” You'll notice that your cravings for things that are perhaps less healthy will start to fade into the background and won't be the chocolate cake chasing you around the kitchen. When they're ready, they can always add some great supplements that they're bound to absorb, like Omega-3s that are in that polar lipid form. Looking for something like in my case, because I'm a vegetarian, I have to make sure I get vitamin B12 every day.

I'm clear that I'm taking vitamin B12 in the methylated form so it's better absorbed. Thankfully, Örlö Nutrition is helping out in this way too because the spirulina they grow produces vitamin B12 and its methylcobalamin in form too. I get my immunity boost spray and my omegas every day. They support my general health and well-being. I'm sure that I'm getting enough of those core nutrients and not too much too, because there's such a thing as overdoing it. You don't always need to take a lot of something. We as a culture think bigger, better, faster and more.

That's not the reality when it comes to your diet. It's not the reality when it comes to other things that you put in your body or on your skin either. I love that you touched on this, that you help people think about what they're putting on their body because the skin and/or muscles are two largest organs. Supporting them is critical. If you have healthy skin, it creates its own moisture. That's part of how we work. You get the right food in and your skin doesn't need a lot of extra support from the outside. Thank you so much for joining me. This has been my pleasure. I'd love to have you back to talk more about the things that you're doing with Betr Health.

Thank you so much. I appreciate it.


I encourage you to browse Örlö Nutrition’s Assortments of Algae-Based High-Impact Food Supplements. The audience of this show even receives a bonus discount of an additional 10% off at checkout with the coupon code NWC for Nutrition Without Compromise. This means that you could get 25% off or more with your first order that combined with subscription prices. If you enjoyed this episode, I encourage you to subscribe to this podcast. While you're at it, leave us a review, a five-star rating, a thumbs up, or a comment. Each of these actions will help us to reach more people, discover the show, get more great guests, and continue to put forward incredible health knowledge. As we close this show, I hope that you'll raise a cup with me as I say my closing words. Here's to your health.


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