Did you know that in the U.S. every single year more than 50,000 people are poisoned by carbon monoxide gas?
It’s a crazy high number and a lot of people are only somewhat familiar as to what carbon monoxide is and what effects it has on the human body.
It’s very much a different beast from carbon dioxide. Let’s get into it.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is often referred to as “The Silent Killer”. It’s a colorless, odorless gas that can cause severe brain damage, and ultimately lead to death; and a lot of times this happens completely invisibly.
You can’t see it, you can’t smell it, you can’t taste it, but carbon monoxide is responsible for hundreds of deaths in the U.S. each year.
And it almost killed me too, and my family, as much as it chills me to say that.
Subscribers on the newsletter know a little bit about this… But when I disappeared from the internet about five months ago, I had no idea that there was a toxic gas leak in the rental house.
I’ll share more in today’s episode. You’re about to hear…
- Simple steps you can take to protect your family against carbon monoxide poisoning
- Improvements you can make to the air quality in your home or office
- Fun and effective methods of detoxing from toxic poisoning
- And tons more…
Alright, let’s get this kicked off.
How to Bounce Back from a Near Death Experience
Long story short, in a series of weird events my wife Alyson, our dog and I were poisoned by carbon monoxide in our sleep and almost didn’t make it.
I’m going to tell you some of the details of what happened and what we can all learn from this crazy debacle.
So, you might be wondering, what is carbon monoxide, exactly?
Carbon monoxide is abbreviated as CO, it’s found in gas fumes produced by furnaces, stoves, gas ranges, portable generators, kerosene heaters, automobile exhaust, propane-powered engines, radiant heaters, lanterns, natural gas appliances, gas fireplaces or by burning charcoal or even wood.
Carbon monoxide from these sources can build up in enclosed or partially enclosed spaces, and anyone inside these spaces, including your pets, can be poisoned and die from breathing this gas that you can’t smell, you can’t taste, you often don’t know what’s happening.
In fact, it makes you very sleepy, and kind of out of it, where you’re not making critical judgments because your brain is literally running out of oxygen.
And having experienced that first hand, it is really, really rough and extremely scary.
It’s also very easy to make the wrong decisions when you’re in that state.
So anyway, carbon monoxide when it’s present in your vicinity is absorbed rapidly through the lungs and it’s actually taken up by the cells in your body much more easily and rapidly than oxygen.
So, it essentially displaces oxygen from your cells and then really bad stuff starts happening. Depending on the size of your dose, the first things you might feel, if you feel anything: headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain and confusion.
And some of those people who are breathing in carbon monoxide gas while they’re sleeping or while they’ve been drinking alcohol, they can die before ever having symptoms.
So, unfortunately, in Colorado this has happened a few times to families.
One family was staying in a vacation rental house that they had actually won in a charity auction. And at this very expensive rental house that they won this vacation to, the whole family was poisoned in their sleep, and it’s extremely ugly and very sad.
But having gone through life, stuff happens. I’ve been poisoned by lead in our water, I’ve been bitten by a black widow spider, even stung by an Arizona bark scorpion.
And I can say that carbon monoxide poisoning was the single worst thing that has ever happened to me, that has ever happened to Alyson, and that has ever happened to our dog.
I cannot believe that we were able to recover to the extent that we have. I would never wish this upon my worst enemies.
And I don’t want to get too much into the details, or I’ll probably lose it, but I’m very, very thankful, more than ever, to be standing here right now.
And I thought that this would be a nice time around Thanksgiving and the holidays to just emphasize all of this gratitude, and how thankful I am just to be alive.
I know a lot of you who are listeners, sometimes the reason you get into health as an interest is out of necessity, because there’s a big cancer scare, a health scare, a heart attack, or something super major, where you were essentially in a near death experience.
James Lugo, who’s become a great friend and who will be joining me on the Fat-Burning Man show in an upcoming episode, was in a position where he was facing death, and then turned it all around.
Kurt Morgan was on his deathbed. And I now can empathize, and not just sympathize, with people who have been on their deathbed at the absolute rock bottom.
And I just want to say, if you want to drop a line and get in touch, this is a very good time to kind of talk through some of these major things.
I’m always happy to help and I don’t have all the answers, but I consider these giant problems of health that most of us are facing too big for any of us on our own.
So, I’m happy to work through some of these problems with everyone.
And when a lot of you write in and ask a question, a lot of times I don’t know the answer, not even close, and so that inspires me to bring the next experts and thought leaders on this show to talk about these very specific things, whether it be PEMFs, carbon monoxide poisoning, air pollution, all these things.
There are so many people who are deeply knowledgeable about this.
And so if you have recommendations about who I should be talking to about anything like this that you are interested in, please get in touch.
Okay, so let’s just quickly talk about some of the things that you can do to make sure that your family is protected from carbon monoxide.
Number one, make sure that your detectors are not just smoke detectors.
And it’s a little tricky.
One of the problems at the rental place where we were, is we had been told and assumed that the detectors also tested for a carbon monoxide not just smoke, and a lot of them by law do now.
And if you go into a rental house, make sure that they have carbon monoxide detectors.
Because if they don’t, in many states, whoever is renting that house to you is breaking the law by not having carbon monoxide detectors throughout the house, especially in sleeping areas.
So, double check your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.
I found one I think for $13 bucks on Amazon that seemed to work just fine. We tested it and everything.
You can spend $30 bucks, but really carbon monoxide detectors are not expensive.
And I can tell you that Alyson and I had to move more than a dozen times this summer because we were displaced from the place we were living and working by this carbon monoxide poisoning.
We weren’t going to sleep there again.
So, we literally moved while wearing gas masks, which we had on hand in case of wildfires.
We moved so many times this summer that we got our own carbon monoxide and other air pollution detectors, and we bring them everywhere we sleep, because that’s how important it is.
Over 50,000 people per year are poisoned by carbon monoxide and I’ll tell you, it can cause brain damage.
It caused the worst kind of spine and neurological pain I’ve had in my entire life.
I could not play music, I couldn’t move my fingers. And this went on for weeks and even months.
I couldn’t speak English, like words would not come out of my mouth and that was just so scary to feel like you’re losing your brain, losing your soul, losing who you are. Like you’re fading away. And that’s what it felt like.
And then over the course of the next few weeks, and months, the reason that we weren’t able to come back for four months or work or anything like that, is because basically our immune systems were completely wrecked after being poisoned.
Your liver has to regenerate, a lot of your organs are trying to keep up and just kind of like get back in action, and it takes a while.
But one extremely inspiring thing is that I’m able to work out again, I’m able to play music again. And obviously I’m able to speak again.
I’ve recovered from major concussions and other things like that.
It’s definitely neurological in nature, as far as recovery goes.
I’ll be talking a lot more about that in upcoming episodes, but there are so many different things that you can do to make sure that you’re not dragging yourself down as you recover.
So number one, no booze.
We weren’t drinking booze pretty much for the past year, but especially after the poisoning.
It was really important that we let our livers rest, so that was something that we didn’t do.
In fact, after the poisoning, I did not eat for over three days because I had no appetite whatsoever.
Fasting for Healing
In the last Ask Me Anything, some of you folks asked about 3 – 7 day fasts, and now I’ve done a few of them out of necessity, because I really just couldn’t eat.
But if anything, I’ve learned a lot about the human body’s ability to recover, even the brain and the neurological system.
You can recover from most things that happen to you, even if they’re absolutely catastrophic.
And I am just flabbergasted by how well we’ve recovered. It was slow and it was really hard, but we’ve recovered.
How We Recovered from CO Poisoning
So what are some of the things that we did that really helped?
Well, IV therapy, mostly with glutathione. But also with magnesium and vitamin C, B vitamins, a few other things in there.
So, every day we were traveling around, moving around with carbon monoxide detectors, but mostly just a big old bag of supplements.
Now, I don’t think things external to your body should be over-emphasized in terms of their importance, you know what I mean?
I was a believer in health supplements before this whole debacle, but now I can say that so many of these helped so much.
Milk thistle is important for detoxing and basically kicking your liver back into action.
And the liver is incredible. It can regenerate if you’re nice to it.
There are other kind of liver detox supplement stacks that we were taking for a while, especially during the first month. And there are many different herbs that can help.
I don’t want to get too much into it, but my mom, who is a holistic herbalist, will probably be on the show again soon, and we can talk about all this. She was so helpful during our recovery.
One that was big for detoxing that I’ve talked about before is chlorella and spirulina.
And actually, if you’re watching the video version of this, you can see right here, these are green powders, chlorella and spirulina. Right here, this is Future Greens.
Green powders are excellent for helping your body get rid of accumulated toxins and junk.
So we were making sure that we hit the Greens once we felt good to eat again.
We treated most of our own supplements from Wild Superfoods as MREs, or survival supplements.
When we were on the road, not really having a predictable place to live and having to move all the time because it was the height of the season, we were taking Mega-Omegas, Future Greens, vitamin D stack, the vitamin C that we’ll be having coming out soon, some other special surprises, as well as our probiotics.
Because like I said, our immune system was completely wrecked. I’m not going to get into too much of the details, but here for months and months after the carbon monoxide poisoning we were sick and just could not get better.
So taking these various supplements, and making sure you’re eating clean, hitting the veggies, not eating too much sugar and making sure you’re doing other things like hitting fiber, making sure you’re getting plenty of fiber, and enough protein to make sure you don’t lose too much muscle.
These are all things that were so important to our recovery.
And I can say that having done some of these things, and then starting to workout again, I’ve been really surprised by how—yes, I did lose performance, I did lose strength, I lost muscle, I lost weight, but I’m surprised by how little I lost.
You know, for some strength things, even though I was unable, really, to do much exercise for two to three months, depending on which type of exercise you’re talking about, I’m really impressed by the body’s ability to come back.
One thing that I tried to do, it’s something that’s always been important to me and I know a lot of you who listen to this show know a lot about it, but I love running.
I call them fun runs. I go out for a good sweat.
It’s kind of like going to the sauna for me, especially when I was living in Austin and running in the summer.
I feel like a kid during recess.
So at the beginning, it was really hard to get back into running.
It was a great hobby to have to kind of get me through this, to clear my mind like a moving meditation.
It doesn’t matter if it’s woo-woo or if it’s totally a science-y way of looking at it, because I go back and forth between both. More than anything, I find that going out mountain biking, running, hiking, and mostly getting a good sweat on always makes me feel better.
If I have not been able to exercise for a long time, I feel sluggish. I feel like my body’s physiology, like my lymph system, like my blood just isn’t moving throughout my body.
And given some of the genetic testing that I’ve discussed in past episodes, I’m not a good detoxer to begin with, so I need all the help that I can get.
A lot of this stuff, aside from the fun runs, applies to Alyson, as well. We were doing a lot of these recovery things together.
And in future episodes, especially in upcoming Ask Me Anythings, if you want me to get in deeper about any of these supplements, any of these recovery techniques, detox techniques, anything like that, please let me know.
I’m happy to get more into it, but this is just kind of like a general overview of me running my mouth for a while.
Okay, so another thing we did was, obviously, drink a lot of water.
When your body is working through something, working through a sickness, you want to make sure you’re getting plenty of water along with those nutrients.
Broth was huge. We’ve had a lot of bone broth.
Especially when you’re feeling a bit beat up and your immune system is down, a good broth can get your soul back in action.
Also, collagen can be very helpful if you’re able to do some light exercise and also preserves some muscle, which is one thing I want to mention.
I didn’t want to completely cut out exercise, so I favored doing a little bit of push-ups, a little bit of air squats, a little bit of of pulls or lifting things up, slowly but surely getting my mojo back.
Qi-gong was very effective, in terms of making me move properly again. Because when your neurological system is messed up, or you have a concussion or something like that, it takes a little while to get all your reflexes back.
Doing those slow intentional movements really helps train parts of your body that are invisible when they’re in shape, but really obvious when they’re not in shape.
So for example, I found that, especially once I started doing qi-gong as a regular practice, I wasn’t quite as clumsy, running into things or dropping things and all of that.
It’s not quick reflexes that you’re working on, but slow intentional ones. And that also applies to music.
So, I’ve had to get back into all these things at the same time, and with a totally different perspective, it’s been really helpful.
Okay, so another thing that is a bit more fun, and this was actually something that our naturopathic physician told us that we should probably do, and that’s go to different hot springs.
Not just because you sweat and get the body’s physiology kicked up and going again, but also because, especially around Colorado and the Southwest, there are a lot of extremely nice hot springs that don’t just have water in them.
They actually have minerals that used to be in water that were either soaked in or consumed. Basically, trace minerals that should be in our water.
That is a whole other subject to get into, but these trace minerals can be absorbed through the skin, and can be absorbed by drinking the water.
So, if you’re drinking from a natural well or from a spring or a lake way back in the day, before everything was toxic and poisoned by the modern world, you were getting so much more than water.
Our bodies miss these nutrients that should be in our water, that should be in our food.
So in any case, we were doing lots of soaks several times a week, which helped especially with the neck pain, the nerve pain, the spine pain.
The soaks would hurt afterwards and then the next day after you wake up, you start to feel a lot better.
So, just a quick recap. No booze, liver stack supplements, vitamin C, vitamin D, immune-boosting supplements, magnesium, glutathione, spirulina, chlorella, greens, fiber, what else we got?
Fasting, hot springs, fun runs, broth, all of these things were so helpful.
Obviously, we tried to sleep as much as we could. That’s a big one.
And then when you have any sort of concussion or neurological damage, it’s really important not to push yourself too much, too fast, as you come back.
The more you push yourself, sometimes the more it can actually hurt you because your body is so fragile at that point, and you really need to take it easy.
And so that was something that we tried our best to do and I think it helped.
When we pushed it, I know when I did, and Alyson did this a few times when she was mostly mentally pushing it—not even physically pushing it—but when we were pushed mentally, it would take us another two or three days of getting sicker before we got better.
We’ve just gone through a bunch of stressful things, so I’m not sure if that means we’ll be dirtier this holiday season or cleaner, but I’m sure I’ll keep you guys updated.
And while I’m blabbering on, I might as well just mention a few other things that I’ve been very much aware of in the past few months.
It does seem, especially as we were shopping, we’ve noticed that the prices of food have started to go up, sometimes by quite a lot. So be aware of that, prepare for that.
We burnt through our emergency cash so fast, mostly just finding a place to stay that wasn’t sleeping in our truck, which we also had to do at one point.
One thing I’m extremely thankful for is that we were able to save up some emergency cash for an event like this. We were actually planning to bug out because of a wildfire risk.
So, we were ready with our little pop-up RV to get out of there. But this was a different kind of emergency, it was extremely expensive, finding a place to live unexpectedly during the height of the summer season.
So all of you out there, I know that these are tough times for a lot of people, especially when it comes to finances and money, but do your very best to save up for an emergency fund.
Because we burnt right through ours and we’re going to be hard at work, making sure that we can rebuild it, because stuff happens, it really does.
And if we didn’t have a little bit of money put aside to burn through for things like this, for the medical expenses, travel, places to stay.
Alyson and I weren’t able to work for three or four months. You take a big hit when stuff like that happens.
So be thankful for your health and make sure that you’re preparing for whatever happens next.
Because these are crazy times, sometimes it feels like we’re all in a pressure cooker.
And I want to make sure that we take care of each other, so get that emergency cash together.
Get some savings going.
Try to get some emergency food, too. Believe it or not, Fat-Burning Man has a back-up of many starches and carbs, because, you know what, they store well.
They may not be optimal to be eating every single day, but if the grid goes down, if the trucks stop coming, if the price of food sky-rockets like it has in a lot of other countries, or if it’s just difficult to get things from the grocery store—floods, hurricanes, fires, all these things make the system fall apart.
So do your best to prepare.
We just got 20 pounds of oats, 40 pounds of brown rice. These things are really cheap, easy to store, and can last for decades if they’re stored correctly.
So we’re doing our best to just be a little bit more prepared.
Not crazy prepper, like lining up a bunch of bazookas and big guns or anything like that. But just being a little bit cleaner with our style of living.
To answer your question, a lot of people have been asking about the hair, by the way. And the honest answer is, we moved like four hours away, so we’re four hours from the airport, four hours from the barber that I was using.
And so eventually, we’ll get around to getting it cut, but you know, I kinda like it long.
It’s not so bad, doing a little rock star rebel thing is working as I get this new book out.
So along those lines, I just want to say one more time, thank you, thank you so much for listening, thank you for the support, thank you for just being there, even when we disappeared.
I know a lot of you were kind of just like, “Is Abel ever coming back? Where’d he go? What happened?”
And I wish I could have communicated more, but trust me when I say we were doing everything we could to get back on the grid and get back to this show, get back to writing books, get back to running our community and the Fat-Burning Tribe and all of this.
This is our service.
This is what we have chosen to do with our lives, and it has so much meaning for us.
So I just want to say thank you. None of this would be possible without you.
Make sure that you get those carbon monoxide detectors for all of the rooms that people are sleeping in, especially children who are even more vulnerable to damage.
Also, make sure that you service your furnaces and water boilers. The thing that actually released the carbon monoxide gas was a faulty water boiler heating unit from under the house.
It was piping into the house, and I tested carbon monoxide levels that were just off the charts, extremely dangerous throughout the house.
And the carbon monoxide detectors, had they been properly installed and running at the time, would have saved us.
So, I want to make sure that they save you.
Smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, make sure that, especially coming into the heating season, that your heating units are working correctly.
If you’re going to be in an enclosed space with the windows down and you’ve got a gas range, if you’re burning LP gas or natural gas, make sure it’s vented correctly.
We’re so paranoid and specific about this stuff now, and I just want to egg you on and make sure that you look into it, too, because it’s really rough and easy to prevent.
It’s simple and easy to prevent with a few detectors. They’re cheap. And make sure the batteries are installed.
Alright, I’m going to stop being the safety guy.
But once again, I’m really happy to be here.
How Jim Lost 50 Pounds
Ok, here’s a review of The Wild Diet that just came in from Jim. He says…
“Life-altering. I lost 50 pounds following the principles in the Wild Diet. Eventually, it just became a part of my life.”
Jim, thank you so much for writing in and leaving that quick review.
When I wrote The Wild Diet, I wanted to share simple tweaks and the fundamentals of health and clean living, clean eating, as well as smart ways of exercising.
This way, you don’t have to go and get some advanced degree to understand all this ridiculous scientific jargon just to know how to get your waistline back or get back in shape, and all of that.
It’s not easy, but it’s simple.
So, I’m glad a lot of you are getting those fundamentals. It’s really a testament to your character and your grit and your drive.
50 pounds there, Jim, that’s about the weight of 5 house cats! So congratulations to you.
And to those of you who have written in, I just want to thank you once more. If you want to get in touch, the best way is to sign up for our newsletter, and then reply to my email.
I read every single one I can and I respond to as many as I can. So I always love being in touch with you.
Designer Babies is a #1 Bestseller in a Half Dozen Countries
Okay, now for a bit of exciting news. You may realize that my new book is out.
And I’ve really good news.
The new book just debuted as a #1 Bestseller in a half dozen countries around the world. Check this out—in the U.S., Designer Babies is a #1 Best Seller in Poetry.
Designer Babies is also a #1 Best Seller in Poetry in Canada!
In Germany, Designer Babies Still Get Scabies is a #1 Bestseller in Humor and a #1 Bestseller in Lyric!
In France, Designer Babies is a #1 Bestseller in Humor and a #1 Bestseller in Poetry!
Designer Babies is also a #1 Best Seller in Poetry in the UK!
And in Australia, Designer Babies is a #1 Best Seller in Poetry!
We just got news about all that, so thanks to all of you who are grabbing this book and reading through it.
A Few Readings from Designer Babies
I’m really excited and thankful for your support, and I’m really glad that some of you are liking it so far.
Okay, so for this first poem, it just so happens to be about air pollution, inspired by a time when our camper van broke down in LA smog, where you just couldn’t see more than one or two car lengths in front of you.
I’m sure those of you in LA are used to it. Anyway, this one is called, “Dog in the Smog.”
I misplaced my dog in the LA smog
Oh look there’s a radioactive frog
Tycoons turned all the trees to logs
Now I wear a gas mask to walk my dog
I know it’s a little dystopian. But can you blame me after all this?
Alright, this next one is called, “Let’s Pretend We’re Robots.”
let’s pretend we’re indestructible robots
who actually care about nature a lot
we’ll forget everything we’ve been taught
and give away all that crap we bought
we can use our megawatts and kilowatts
to push out all the despot,
greedy execs, vampires and juggernauts
then we’ll give destruction the boycott
knock out all our toxic cultural rot
silence all those silly gunshots
cleanse our noses of radioactive snot
shutter every last stinking feedlot
quit killing trees to build parking lots
planting forests of peach tree and apricot
ponderosa pine, juniper and even loquat
making homes for cool creatures like the ocelot
(they should probably be our mascot)
and even if we get caught
for thickening the Man’s plot
(as indestructible robots
who care about nature a lot)
giving our little world a shot
is so much better than not…
just a little food for thought.
Okay, one more. This one’s nice and quick. It’s called, “Mainstream Kibble.”
Why you gotta nibble on that mainstream kibble?
Time to scare yourself and live a little.
Okay, so if you want to get the whole audiobook extravaganza, and automatically get entered into the giveaway, then go to DesignerBabiesBook.com.
And please don’t forget to leave a review on Amazon or wherever you buy or listen to the book.
I’ve already heard from some of you, I know you like it, I know some of you will not like it, and that’s totally cool, but I’ll tell you just a little bit more.
We have plenty of words that came in from past guests of this show who you listeners will be familiar with.
So let’s start with a recent guest, best-selling author Sarah Fragoso. Here’s what she says about Designer Babies Still Get Scabies...
“Mostly silly? Ok, sure – but as I chuckled, I also felt my heart tighten up at Abel’s ability to give us a huge dose of 2019 reality. This little poetry book screams WAKE UP – nothing like humor mixed with a big ol’ dose of truth to get us to pay more attention to where we need to make some significant changes in the world. Highly recommended, I’m giving this to everyone I know!”
– Sarah Fragoso, Bestselling Author
Thank you so much for that, Sarah.
And another recent guest and friend of the show, Akshay Nanavati, says…
“A highly entertaining, brilliantly crafted, and deeply profound look at the current state of the human condition. It will challenge you, confront you and perhaps even shock you… but whether or not you agree with it, it’s near impossible to deny the sheer genius of this poetic masterpiece. The wit and wisdom within these pages will stay with you long after you put this book down.”
– Akshay Nanavati, Bestselling Author
Thanks so much, man.
Alright, so in case you don’t know what this book is all about, in Designer Babies you’ll meet indestructible robots, world-conquering pumpkins, $300 million fighter jets, dog-eating dinosaurs, judgemental Sasquatch and for the first time ever, the Dastardly Zuckerburglar.
Speeding through true stories of eels on cocaine, you’ll ultimately discover why designer babies and brain implants won’t save us as we tumble toward the Singularity.
Okay, so, this part’s really cool because this book would be totally censored by any reasonable publisher. We’re independently publishing this one all ourselves, and that means that I can give you the Audiobook for free when you buy the paperback book.
And when you claim your free Audiobook, we’ll automatically enter you into our giant giveaway for over $800 bucks of cool stuff.
What did you think of this Thanksgiving update episode? Drop a note in the comments below, and thanks so much for listening.