2 years later, I upgraded the same list to 50 supplements when I published Living A Fully Optimized Life.
But there are three particular agents that serve as the bedrock upon which my health is built.
And I was reminded of them when an email subscriber recently asked me this question:
If you were to design a protocol for me to optimize my health and get as strong and as lean as possible in 4 weeks, and had a million dollars on the line, what would the protocol look like?
The very first thing I recommended alongside Guaranteed Shredded was the “trifecta”, if you will, for being fully optimized 365 days a year.
“Trifecta” Medication #1 For Optimized Health: Therapeutic Testosterone
Therapeutic testosterone should be the foundational building block of any optimization stack as it enhances all of your bodily functions.
As I have written extensively in The TOT Bible (and as Daniel Kelly did in Optimized Under 35), there isn’t a single part of your health where testosterone does not play a major role.
The decision to undergo testosterone optimization therapy is one you will never regret as your quality of life is dramatically enhanced.
Many patients often divide their lives into “pre” and “post” optimized because the physical and mental changes are truly profound.
If you are deadly serious about fully optimizing your hormonal health far above and beyond what’s considered to be “normal”, this is an absolute must-have.
But it’s something you need to put forth a lifelong commitment towards, as you are replacing your body’s declining natural production with an external source.
And as I’ve mentioned numerous times before, SYMPTOMS take priority over lab numbers when it comes to diagnosing your need for testosterone optimization therapy.
<REMEMBER, to legally use therapeutic testosterone in the USA, you must have a Doctor’s prescription and an observed clinical need.
This is why it is critically important to work with a Doctor who understands the finer nuances of managing the male endocrine system.
For a high-level overview of the current state of science with respect to testosterone optimization therapy, I highly recommend the following two links:
* This in-depth article I wrote for Ben Greenfield’s website
* This podcast I did with Ben Pakulski, which I STILL consider to be one of the very best I’ve done on the subject
As for what I’m personally doing? Great question…
I used to be a strong advocate for intramuscular injections for the past 18.5 years, injecting testosterone cypionate and/or propionate every other day.
Today, I am currently using a trans-scrotal compounded versabase cream (200 mg of testosterone per gram of cream) applied once per day to a clean, shaven and dry scrotum.
From personal experience, the cream is equal to the injections when it comes to the benefits provided (energy, muscle mass, cognition, endurance, etc.)
On top of being easier to apply and far less invasive, the slightly better boost in dihydrotestosterone(DHT) leads to improved sexual performance and stronger erections.
“Trifecta” Medication #2 For Optimized Health: Desiccated Thyroid
Desiccated thyroid is a combination of the following active thyroid hormones:
T1, T2 (3,5-diio-L-thyronine), T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine).
Dessicated thyroid helps speed up fat loss while undergoing a calorie-restricted diet by increasing your basal metabolic rate (BMR).
In a muscle-building diet where you’re consuming a surplus of calories, a microdose of dessicated thyroid will allow you to better metabolize your food allowing for hypertrophy (i.e. less fat gain, more lean muscle gain).
From a hormonal perspective, desiccated thyroid can enhance the optimization of essential hormones such as estrogen and testosterone.
The HPTA is an intricate system and optimizing testosterone often requires the optimization of thyroid additionally.
While there are other thyroid medications one could use, such as Cytomel/liothyronine (T3) our Synthroid/levothyroxine (T4), they are far harsher in nature.
Specifically, both Synthroid and Cytomel can permanently alter your natural thyroid output if abused, on top of having numerous well-documented side effects.
To get your hands on this medication, it will require a physician’s prescription.
Specifically, you must demonstrate an observed clinical need via your symptoms and other important blood markers (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone, Free T3, Free T4, etc.).
This is imperative as patients with subclinical hypothyroidism will have the goal of moving their thyroid levels from the low range to a higher, more optimal range.
As for dosing, I highly recommend you follow the dosing instructions recommended by your Doctor and as listed on your prescription.
I personally have seen best results when I take it in the morning on an empty stomach and also in the mid-afternoon between lunch and dinner.
My dosage is anywhere from 30-60 mgs.
For individuals who take a dose twice per day, the mid-afternoon is the best tie for a second dose to avoid disrupting your sleep cycle.
Three excellent brands for getting your hands on desiccated thyroid are Armour, Nature Throid And WP Thyroid.
“Trifecta” Medication #3 For Optimized Health: Metformin
Last but certainly not least, we have what I consider to be the world’s most effective anti-aging drug on the planet.
Its life-extension properties are now under full investigation in the TAME trial (“Targeting Aging With Metformin”), in which aging will be targeted as an endpoint.
It finally closed the remaining $40M of its $75M budget, and the groundbreaking trial will start this month:
“In a retrospective 2014 analysis  conducted by the University of Cardiff of 78,000 adult type 2 diabetics in their 60s, those who took metformin lived longer, on average, than healthy controls of the same age.
This has led a growing body of doctors beginning to prescribe the drug off-label, so that their patients may benefit from its purported anti-aging effects.
Such widespread speculation demands deeper scientific investigation. It is TAME’s composite primary endpoint, created with the cooperation of the FDA, that excites Barzilai and his colleagues.
They hope that Big Pharma will use it to develop drugs with even more powerful anti-aging effects”
Metformin is not just a drug used by diabetics to lower blood sugar and suppress insulin.
As I wrote in Living A Fully Optimized Life, its numerous benefits can be summarized within a few sentences:
“You want to use Metformin because it is cardioprotective, prevents cancer, and it is believed to stop the progress of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. It’s also affordable and easily provided by your local pharmacist.”
It’s one of the world’s safest and most well-studied drugs in existence, with nearly a century of clinical data to supports its efficacy.
Sadly, it does not receive more positive attention due to the “powers that be” (a.k.a. the pharmaceutical industry) in charge of our broken medical system.
Through the claims that side effects such as “kidney failure” and “lactic acidosis” can happen in healthy humans, they prevent Metformin from being used anywhere outside of diabetes.
The New York Times even published an article attempting to de-merit Metformin’s life-extending properties, which I fully debunked in this YouTube video.
I also did a podcast with Ben Greenfield where I addressed every single myth and so-called concern about the “dangers” of Metformin.
Just like desiccated thyroid, Metformin will require a doctor’s prescription.
We highly recommend a dosage of 500-1000 mg twice per day for men and 250-500 mg twice per day for women (once in the morning and once at night).
The morning dose should be taken on an empty stomach for best results (i.e. reducing insulin levels), while the second dose should be taken right before your evening meal.
For those suffering from intestinal disturbances (i.e. bloating, diarrhea), you have two options:
(1) Take the extended release (XR) version of Metformin
(2) CLEAN UP YOUR DIET – As Metformin cleanses your gut’s microbiome of nasty pathogens, you may experience some side effects (i.e. it’s the food you put in your mouth, not Metformin).
As for over-the-counter alternatives, Berberine is an acceptable option but IMO, it is simply not the same as the real deal.
My Final Thoughts On My Optimization Stack
While I am confident in the three medications I’ve discussed to do wonders for your overall well-being, there’s no such thing as a “one-size-fits-all” supplement stack.
Fully optimizing your health often involves including additional supplements and agents in your daily health routine.
Some people may need to add 1-2 supplements to improve their performance in the gym, while others need several to fight against numerous age-related diseases.
But ultimately, self-experimentation is crucial.
Through consistency following a regime of supplementation and keeping track of your records, you’ll find a stack that best fits your biochemical individuality.
With all of this said, mastering the basics of good health should ALWAYS take precedence:
Intelligent training, proper eating habits, sleeping well at night, managing stress appropriately, doing the inner work…without these lifestyle habits in check, any supplement for optimized health WILL NOT serve you.
So if you’re ready to do what it takes to live an optimized lifestyle and work alongside an elite progressive physician, sign up at MensHealthcare.com to get connected with a doctor today.
And don’t forget to check out Living A Fully Optimized Life, my BEST publication to date on optimized living!
When I wrote The TOT Bible back in 2018, I discussed 21 agents of change that can take you from being average to becoming fully optimized.