“The thing about the government is that they can accuse you of something, ruin your life, you can be completely innocent and you don’t get compensated.” – Patrick Arnold
At the behest of my astute legal counsel, here is a legal disclaimer for this episode:
First, I am not recommending, endorsing, or supporting any of the substances or compounds (especially illegal) discussed or described in the interview. I am interviewing Patrick Arnold as a journalist seeking additional information regarding matters of public interest and concern.
Second, I have removed some of the names of athletes who are alleged to have used performance enhancing drugs. I recognize that this seems excessive, but even if athletes have been publicly banned for drug usage, unless the ban relates to the specific substance and time period referenced in the podcast, I can be sued for defamation for repeating or publicizing these stories.
With all that said, here we go…
If you liked my episode with Dom D’Agostino, Ph.D., you might love this one.
Patrick Arnold, widely considered “the father of prohormones,” is an organic chemist known for introducing androstenedione (remember Mark McGwire?), 1-Androstenediol (marketed as “1-AD”), and methylhexanamine into the dietary supplement market.
He also created the designer steroid tetrahydrogestrinone, best known as THG and “the clear.” THG, along with two other anabolic steroids that Patrick manufactured (best known: norboletone), were not banned at the time of their creation. They were hard-to-detect drugs at the heart of the BALCO professional sports doping scandal, which thrust Barry Bonds and others into the spotlight. BALCO distributed these worldwide to world-class athletes in a wide variety of sports, ranging from track and field to professional baseball and football.
Recently, Patrick has been innovating in the legal world of ketone supplementation, including breakthroughs in performance and taste with products like KetoForce and KetoCaNa, which were highlighted during my podcast with Dominic D’Agostino, Ph.D.
If you’d like to meet the (in)famous Patrick Arnold in person, you can find him at The Arnold Classic in Columbus, Ohio from March 3-6, 2016 at Booth 328.
In this science-dense conversation, we cover a ton, mostly related to better performance through chemistry. We also discuss Patrick’s biggest successes and mistakes, his path to science, ursolic acid and other clever creations, exogenous ketone supplementation for sports, as well as nonsense in the media about anabolics (e.g., current Delta-2 scandal).
Short on time? Listen to this segment on how an internet chat forum led to one of the biggest scandals in sports history.
- Listen to it on iTunes.
- Stream by clicking here.
- Download as an MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “save as.”
Want to hear another podcast related to enhanced human performance from another chemist? — Listen to my conversation with Dom D’Agostino, Ph.D. In this episode, we discuss fasting, ketosis, and the end of cancer (stream below or right-click here to download):
QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What is your philosophy on the use of performance enhancing chemicals? Please let me know in the comments.
Scroll below for links and show notes…
Selected Links from the Episode
- Learn more about gynecomastia (AKA – bitch tits)
- Check out the Arnold Classic
- Check out FitCon
- Learn more about 6-OXO
- Learn more about tetrahydrogestrinone (THG)
- Check out the Merck Index, a compilation of natural compounds
- Watch the documentary Bigger Stronger Faster
- My ketone measurement tool – Precision Xtra Blood Glucose and Ketone Monitoring System
- Breathalyzer ketone measurement tool – The Ketonix Device
- Check out KetoCaNa, Prototype Nutrition’s exogenous ketone product
- Learn more about Ian Danney (Note: Danney-Ball), Optimum EFX and Amino Matrix
- Learn more about Metformin
- Jack Kennedy by Chris Matthews
- Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond
- To purchase Patrick Arnold products visit:
- Learn more from Patrick Arnold:
- How Patrick Arnold developed a passion for bodybuilding, chemistry, and anabolic steroids [5:12]
- How Patrick started making his own chemical concoctions [9:31]
- How Patrick decided to create designer steroids [13:31]
- Patrick’s concept of prohormones [17:57]
- Describing the progression from androstenediol to 4-androstenediol (4-AD) to 1-androstenediol (1-AD) [22:07]
- Elaborating on Patrick’s “learning experience” with methadone derivatives [29:57]
- How Patrick weaned himself off methadone [34:42]
- Other athletic enhancement drugs, which have high abuse potential [39:12]
- The biggest waste of money for athletes and competitors in terms of supplements [44:49]
- The compounds Patrick created that he is most proud of [47:45]
- The story of when DEA came after Patrick Arnold’s company [55:12]
- How Patrick came in contact with Victor Conte [58:32]
- Distinguishing between anabolic and androgenic steroids [1:10:05]
- How tetrahydrogestrinone (THG) came about and why it was so weird [1:16:39]
- Drugs that should not be used with anabolic agents [1:22:56]
- What is ursolic acid and when will it become available again? [1:25:42]
- If IGF-1 production is increased from ursolic acid products, at what point is cancer risk elevated? [1:32:31]
- Thoughts on quickly learning rudimentary organic chemistry [1:33:57]
- Patrick’s yohimbe experiment [1:36:21]
- When will we be able to measure our own BHB levels without blood? [1:40:41]
- How Patrick was introduced to the world of exogenous ketones [1:45:07]
- What are the most interesting applications of exogenous ketones? [1:51:27]
- Who should be wary of consuming exogenous ketones or KetoCaNa [1:55:37]
- Personal attributes that have been important to his success with making new chemicals [1:56:47]
- When do the best ideas come to you? [1:59:05]
- Typical morning routines [2:00:12]
- Patrick Arnold’s workout drink and routine [2:01:12]
- Thoughts on longevity and expanding lifespan [2:03:37]
- When you think of the word successful, who is the first person who comes to mind and why? [2:05:58]
- Most gifted books [2:06:50]
- The most common misconceptions about Patrick Arnold [2:08:12]
- Advice for your thirty-year-old self [2:10:30]
- Patrick Arnold’s comments on Delta-2 [2:12:37]
- Performance enhancing drugs and therapies which we will be hearing about in the next few years [2:16:52]
- Thoughts on selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMS) [2:19:31]
- Particular molecules that are exceptionally beautiful [2:23:44]
Posted on: March 2, 2016.
Please check out Tribe of Mentors, my newest book, which shares short, tactical life advice from 100+ world-class performers. Many of the world's most famous entrepreneurs, athletes, investors, poker players, and artists are part of the book. The tips and strategies in Tribe of Mentors have already changed my life, and I hope the same for you. Click here for a sample chapter and full details. Roughly 90% of the guests have never appeared on my podcast.
Who was interviewed? Here's a very partial list: tech icons (founders of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Craigslist, Pinterest, Spotify, Salesforce, Dropbox, and more), Jimmy Fallon, Arianna Huffington, Brandon Stanton (Humans of New York), Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Ben Stiller, Maurice Ashley (first African-American Grandmaster of chess), Brené Brown (researcher and bestselling author), Rick Rubin (legendary music producer), Temple Grandin (animal behavior expert and autism activist), Franklin Leonard (The Black List), Dara Torres (12-time Olympic medalist in swimming), David Lynch (director), Kelly Slater (surfing legend), Bozoma Saint John (Beats/Apple/Uber), Lewis Cantley (famed cancer researcher), Maria Sharapova, Chris Anderson (curator of TED), Terry Crews, Greg Norman (golf icon), Vitalik Buterin (creator of Ethereum), and nearly 100 more. Check it all out by clicking here.