Did you know that Dentistry was voted the unhealthiest career in the world? Multiple times. That’s right, we’re number one! The grim reality is that we take on all sorts of professional and personal risks on a daily basis.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Dr. Rohan Verma, a clinical dentist and fitness coach to record this wholesome episode. We talked about what steps we can take to improve our health. At the end of our conversation, we also talked about diet as well. I hope this episode will address our unique professional challenges and help you become healthier and more mindful about everything you’re doing for mental and physical well-being.
Highlights of this episode:
- 1:51 Dr. Rohan Verma’s Introduction
- 3:46 Mental Health Awareness
- 6:39 Biggest mistakes dentists are making with their health
- 11:09 Posture Issues
- 14:50 The significance of sleep
- 16:52 Importance of setting a routine for better health improvement
- 24:16 Working out routine
- 29:09 Dr. Rohan’s stand on different kinds of diet
- 31:29 The benefit of calorie counting
Check out Dr. Rohan Verma’s Instagram to get some tips on how to improve your health – as well as a Dentist he’s an online fitness coach.
Monitor your calorie intake with this MyFitnessPal: Calorie Counter available on:
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If you enjoyed this episode, then do check out 5 Lessons from Lincoln Harris
Click below for full episode transcript:Jaz's Introduction: Did you know that Business Insider ranked DENTISTRY as the MOST DANGEROUS PROFESSION in the whole world for your health, and they did this multiple years in a row. So, why is it? Why is our job so dangerous?
I think we know the answers. We’re in this horrible posture, we’ve got this infection control risk, we are sat in this four walls with just one other person, usually. That’s gonna drive you mad, as well as the extreme stress that we undertake in our profession of clinical dentistry. So, whether you are a dentist, a nurse or a DA as they’re so affectionately called in the US, or if you’re a therapist or hygienist. I think you have something to gain from this episode about looking after your health in the space of dentistry. Now, who better than Dr. Rohan Verma, who is a clinical practicing dentist, and also a fitness fanatic and a fitness coach to professionals.
So, I brought him on to talk about different things like what are the big mistakes we’re making in our profession? In terms of how we’re NEGLECTING OUR HEALTH? How can we IMPROVE our WELL-BEING in this profession? And we also pivot and talk about some other things that I’m quite interested in like towards the end, we talked about diet, right? I know many of you know I do a lot of intermittent fasting. So, I will not eat my first meal quite often until, you know, one or 2pm and then I’ll have like a five or six hour window where I consume all my food.
So, what does Rohan think about that? What does he think about paleo diet or carnivorous diet or keto? So, I asked him about this kind of stuff. But before then, we talk about how we can recognize that something’s not working for our health and what are the actionable steps that we can take to better improve our health. Welcome to the podcast. My name is Jaz Gulati. You are the Protruserati because now you’re listening to this and if you’re new to the podcast, welcome.
This segment of the podcast is an IC, so an interference costs. So, slightly pivot away from clinical dentistry. If clinical dentistry is more your thing, then most of my episodes are that but I do like to talk about things that I’m interested in. So, whether it’s well-being, getting more sleep, or this fitness and health, reducing your stress or health. That’s what we’re talking about today. So, hope you enjoy this episode with Dr. Rohan Verma.
Dr. Rohan Verma, welcome to the Protrusive Dental Podcast my friend, how are you?
I’m very well, man, thank you very much for having me. [Jaz]
Like many of the guests that I have on, we do go way back and I’ve known you from undergraduate days. Even then you always say, I had this amazing physique and of knew, okay, these guys are definitely gonna pivot into, as well as, being an awesome dentist you are. You’re into the health space and fitness space. So, it would be fun to talk about that stuff, but for those dentists who haven’t come across you for around the world. Tell us about you Rohan. Tell us about you as a dentist and you outside of the remit of dentistry in terms of all the other things that you do in the space of health and and well-being. [Rohan]
Awesome! Well, firstly, hi guys, nice to meet you. I’m Rohan. I’m a full-time private practice dentist working at Cookham in little village near Marlow, Henley, Reading area. As Jaz very kindly said, yeah, I’ve been into fitness for a long, long time. Just like everyone here, I was very fit and active at school. Did the standard things, did rugby, football, karate, those sort of things. And then it wasn’t until I hit University. And then that’s really when my fitness journey kind of really began a little bit, probably, in the most conventional way.
My mental health, unfortunately, took a turn for the south. And I really started to become quite anxious. I noticed that there were certain traits of my, sort of like perfectionism coming through which naturally led as dentists, as one thing, I think I noticed that very much. So, the more I talk about it, more people and more and more aware about it, and I needed an output. And it took me a while to find my own feet with it. But in essence, I realized that I missed my fitness. And I miss doing active things that used to be like sports, rugby, karate, as a kid. But when I go to dentistry it was, okay, all or nothing with the books. And I think, that aspect of being very much all or nothing made me realize I had no balance, and I needed to find some outlet. And that’s where the gym came for me. I could do it my own time, my own space, and it was just the perfect outlet for me.[Jaz]
If you don’t mind, Rohan just talking about that. I think it’s really good of you to mention that, you know, you had an adverse experience with your mental health, as we all do. We’re all human. As dentists in this high pressure job that we’re in. And we’ll talk about all those sorts of things later on in terms of general well-being and obviously fitness and health. But also mental health sort of being so key. A, how did you recognize this issue? But then B, did you seek professional help? Or did you just do some introspection, self-discovery, and discover yourself that, okay, what you are missing in your life is the things that made you happy in your childhood. Which is the exercise and the fitness and the x and the sort of the fun things that you did extracurricular and then you just pursued that or how does that come to be? [Rohan]
To be honest, I think if you’re aware of mental health, I think you’ll realize it’s not something which suddenly appears, it’s something which you’re always dealing with. I mean, to this day, I would still say I’m dealing with my mental health. It’s there’s peaked and troughed throughout my dental career, definitely for sure. I think the first time I experienced it was first year, undergraduate BDS, an anatomy spot exam. I remember it so vividly. I was always that guy at school. I worked hard. I will do extremely well at school and I wouldn’t actually worry about it because I knew if I put in the work, I would get the results. Then you come to dentistry where everyone is super smart. Everyone is of that top tier kind. The first few days, and it was overwhelming for me at first. And I remember to study for that spot.
And it just no matter how much I tried, I looked at those that the court required and try to memorize those, those anatomies diagrams as much as I could, coloring them and everything. It just didn’t work for my brain. And I remember sitting there in the exam, I wanted to put pen to paper. But I physically couldn’t move. I literally felt almost stuck. And I think that was the point when I realized something was brewing in me. And it wasn’t probably till I started to speak to loved ones. I mean, fortunately, my mother’s psychologists and therapists, and she started talking to me saying, ‘Look, I can’t help you, because obviously, there’s a clash of interests here.
However, I do think there’s something going on.’ I don’t think I was in the right sort of headspace at the time to first deal with it at university. And it wasn’t actually until maybe years later that I actually sought professional help. And actually, that really has been a big turning point for me. Yes, fitness has helped. But I wouldn’t say that’s the only word on it. Yeah, so it’s been, it’s been a journey, man. Don’t get me wrong. Like I said, I think I’m learning each day.[Jaz]
We’re all on this journey, everyone’s in a different place. And it’s like a different seasons in our physical health, which I’m at the moment, that at this time of recording with you. Diwali 2022, I can’t be in this moment, right now. I am, Happy Diwali, Rohan, I am neglecting my physical health. At the moment, I can say that I haven’t made peace with it, though. Because that’s not how I wish to live the rest of my, not only year, but rest of my life. But it’s just a season at the moment where I know that okay, my health is suffering, because of various circumstances in life. But it’s really good to have that self reflection and self-awareness. And it’s really good that you did seek what you did. But pivoting on to the most of the physical health, which ties in so much of the mental health. [Rohan]
Dentists in terms of, when you search the jobs in the world, and there’s a huge quite, it went viral amongst our community of all the jobs in the world, every single job that is like the most dangerous if you like. And a couple of years in a row, dentistry came out as the most dangerous job because of various things like exposure to radiation. The fact that you’re in this posture in this room, diseases that you can catch, for example. So, put all those metrics and suicide rate. So, all these metrics are fed into fact that dentistry was the worst for your health, or dangerous in that category of all different professions in the world, which is crazy. So, having said that, and in light of that, in that context, what are the biggest mistakes you think dentists are making with their health? And just to give those a little background and context, Rohan being a dentist, but also helps dentists and other professionals improve their well-being and health. So, you know, you are the best person to speak about this. [Rohan]
I’ve been in the fitness industry for 10 years and haven’t practiced now since 2013. So, the best part of nearly 10 years, I’ve seen very much certain correlations between the two favorites in dentistry of what we do right, what we do wrong. The big one, and we kind of already touched on it already, Jaz, is an essence that, we spend our entire days at dentists between the hours of eight and six, nine and five, call it what you want, focusing in on other people. But often we neglect ourselves, it comes at a detriment to our own well-being. I mean, tell me the number of times you’ve gone to work. And then you’ve had a busy back to back patient list. And in that time, you haven’t drank any water. You’ve had to run late through lunch, you maybe skip lunch. You’ve not perhaps time to prep your meals. So, therefore you’re going to order delivery, when you get home from work. You then go out, you sit with them and have you cooked dinner. And in essence, you have now to go back onto work, to do some clean checks because you know, you’re gonna plan your Invisalign cases without thinking, ‘Oh, it’s 11:30 I’ve got to go to bed’, and then start that routine all over again.
We neglect ourselves and we forget how stressful the environment is. We forget that we’re not nurturing ourselves. We’re not thinking about our sleep patterns. We’re not thinking about our well-being both physical and mental. Because those things impact us not just in the moment when you feel tired. These things add up. So, when you start thinking, ‘Oh, is my mental health gonna suffer?’ Of course, but we’re neglecting ourselves. So, I think that’s the first thing I’d say is we hinder ourselves with.[Jaz]
Rohan I just want to mention that for those listening right now. And if you’re driving, please drive safely because if like me, you’re listening in your a little minute just there. Describing all the things as though you’ve got a CCTV camera of my life. I know there’s hundreds of dentist driving to the Capitol, okay. But people watching you driving, who’s guys listening to rock music or something like bobbing their head along? So yeah, totally, man, you hit the nail on the head. I know so many dentists of all, you know, no matter if they experienced dentists, or new dentists, that describe this. Exactly, this sort of rat-race kind of mentality that we have that we give everything in our day. We’re sort of expanded. We’re absolutely just smashed. So, we come home, and we want to take away and we neglect ourselves. [Rohan]
I mean, often people say look, it’s about that, you know, we have that all or nothing mentality. That’s why we got here. That’s why we’re successful. But you’ve got to you’ve got to ask yourself, how long can you keep that up for? And I think the big question I get asked by people who either interact with me on Instagram on social media, whether it be for example, just people asking me for advice day to day when I meet them at weddings, and they say, ‘Oh, what do you do?’ I say, look for a balance now, in my opinion, and it’s very cliche, there’s no perfect balance. There’s no such thing. However, you have spinning plates. You have work, you have family life, you have friends, you have dentistry, you have perhaps maybe an Instagram profile you’re trying to juggle. There’s so many things, you’re constantly juggling. At times, you just need to know when to put the pedal to the metal and when to ease off a little bit. So for example, okay, I’ve got an Invisalign Open Day, yeah, I’m gonna have to put in some hours to prep that, cool.
But then perhaps the next week, the next few days after that. Put some time into your well being maybe go for a walk with your loved ones, with a little one after work. Maybe spend half an hour. Go for a small workout, even a small one. Just do something, she knows is going to nurture you. Because finding that structure, which helps you and also you can stick to, and you’ll hear this me say throughout this whole podcast today. That’s the crucial recipe. It’s not about finding the perfect solution. It’s about finding the solution that works for you.[Jaz]
And what are the associated in terms of themes? Is that the main one that you can focus on before we move on? Or is there another big health mistake? So number one, just to summarize is we don’t look after ourselves? [Rohan]
Yeah, I think number two, I mean, I can go all day. This is what I love to talk about it’s like a goal day. The second thing I would say, is we tend to find we’re looking for the quick fix. You mentioned a statistic about how we start off with back pain, neck pain, it’s guaranteed. If you’re gonna be sitting there doing two hours and those three hour composite build up cases, you know, doing big case, we have work like yourself Jaz, you’ve got to realize you are stuck in the most unnatural position all day long, perhaps maybe your necks gonna suffer, your back’s gonna suffer, your posture is gonna suffer. And I see it quite a lot. And don’t get me wrong, I’ve done it myself. The first thing we think we turned to is ibuprofen and the chiropractor or the physio, so we look for the quick fix. Whereas as dentists, I thought we were meant to be out there planning for longevity, planning for the long-term.
So, while we’re not looking at the cause, we’re not looking at, okay, do I need to address perhaps, maybe it’s going to be buying some loops, maybe it’s going to be perhaps maybe working on a saddle chair? Or more importantly, what about building up the muscles of our neck or back or shoulders or spine? So, that’s what I’m trying to unpick this sort of health, the habits we have at the moment. So, going to work is great. Doing a long day at work is great, but what are you doing after work to help nurture those problems that you’re feeling when you’re sitting up late at night time having back pain, etc? Don’t just go for the quick fix. It’s almost like you broken that lower left six visa lingual cusp. Do you stick on a GIC? You do an onlay. Do you do the quick fix? Or do you look for the long term solution? That’s what I feel that we need to start-[Jaz]
I’ll start recommending to our patients is not what we’re repeating ourselves. [Rohan]
That’s the thing. And it’s it comes again, back to what are we doing for ourselves? That I guess is the overall encompassing problem. But what are we doing also to help ourselves? I think the other big thing is, and I see it a lot, in a lot of my clients who tend to be doctors and dentists ends up being like, we need to appreciate that our environment that we work in is extremely stressful. Guaranteed. Very intimate, very precise work and there is a huge demand to provide amazing outcomes, whether it be aesthetically functionally, hopefully everything all together. So come Friday, come 5pm. And I’m culprit to it too. When that drill goes down, I want to pick up a Corona and I want to chill. However, it comes back to that work-life balance. Are we finding perhaps maybe that balance, which may be actually not necessarily nourishing our well-being?
So, don’t get me wrong? I do think you should go out for, perhaps a nice meal with loved ones. I do think you should go out for a couple of beers. But do we know how to find that sort of sensible approach to it? Do we looked at, potentially, looking at, okay, maybe I’ll go for a walk with my family tomorrow morning. Maybe I’ll go for a workout because I can still have that structure, that routine of knowing how to work hard, play hard, but also think about my well-being in that process. It’s not just remembering to push yourself but knowing when to like look after yourself as well.[Jaz]
Very good. And, Rohan, I want to trace back to the point you made, again about how we go for the quick fix. And you mentioned about the posture issues. And I linked that back to the earlier point I made, were the some of the theories as to why there is such a high, you know, depression or suicidal alcoholism right in dentistry, traditionally, I don’t know what the latest stats are. But this is what we’re led to believe, when you speak to our more experienced colleagues, you know, in terms of historically. And so one of the theories is because we are in this sort of slouch posture, that sort of physiology feeds into our psychology and it’s completely the opposite of power posing. So, power posing, you know, you’re looking at, you see how your physiology and posture affects your psychology.
So, there’s a whole dimension of okay, yes, we’re neglecting our physical health, but that ties in better with our mental health. And you mentioned about the quick fix. I think I also mentioned that, okay. We want to aim for that quick fix. But what about the importance of sleep somehow, which is overarching in terms of your health. How do you coach your clients in terms of sleep? Is that the kind of do you have discussions about sleep?[Rohan]
Absolutely. I mean, look, sleep is a huge part. In my opinion, if you think about your bedtime routine, you’re setting yourself up for the next day. I think often we forget to realize that your sleep is linked to everything. Your sleep is linked to your stress. It’s linked to your hunger levels, your digestion, your energy levels, your hormones, everything. In essence, when you’re sleeping, your body is resting and recovering. So, if you’re doing four hours, five hours a night and it’s broken sleep. You’re waking up to go to the bathroom. You’re waking up thinking about stuff. Maybe what you got to do in the morning. Maybe that first difficult patient you got in the morning. That is going to be setting you up for a very challenging day. And then that’s going to roll on for days after days, weeks after weeks, month after month, it’s going to have a huge impact on your health. I mean, the sort of key, sort of number, there’s no perfect number. I mean, if you tell this to a young mother, I said to her, aim for 7, 8 or 9 hours asleep, she’s going to look at me like you’re having a laugh me. But I would say if you can try to give yourself I think working backwards and pitching it backwards helps a lot more.
So, give yourself almost like a non negotiable you’re aiming for. So for example, Jaz, your little ones getting up, you know what time you gotta go to school, we’re trying to get your dream drop off. So, this thing backwards with your routine. What time do I need to go to bed to aim for, ideally six and a half to seven hours of sleep. And then give yourself a half an hour buffer. Listen, I guarantee you when you finish your day. You know you shouldn’t be but you’re probably gonna be sitting there, scrolling on Instagram, or checking your emails, checking that you’ve done everything you need to do for the next day. So, give yourself that half an hour buffer. And then allow yourself that six and a half to seven hours. And if you can get that sleep in the next day, you will wake up feeling potentially more refreshed, less likely to pick on, excuse my language, crappy foods. Because you’re not feeling as hungry and perhaps lethargic and tired and generally low your self-esteem and fear and feelings. Because that’s where we reach out for the junk. That’s where we reach out to doing very little of sitting on our butts, we got home from work because we’re just tired.[Jaz]
And you gave that one piece of actual advice already, actually in terms of how to set a better routine and to get better quality sleep. What are the actionable, to something that we can action as dentists that, if there was like one thing that you hate about what we do to our health, and you really want to change that and shake it up and start doing this one thing. You talk about the problems and the issues and how we look after ourselves. If there was like a magic wand and we change one habit about what we do. As a stereotypical profession, what would that be? [Rohan]
That’s a tough question, man. I can’t say one. I really couldn’t say one. Well, I couldn’t say to do one thing is go to my Instagram and click my link bio. No plug intended. But seriously, as a free sort of like seven step process of how to kind of take your well-being into, perhaps another dimension, perhaps would be looking after yourself in a more manageable, more longevity approach. So, for example, that I talked about, in that, that seven step process, like you said, sleep, we talked about that six and a half, seven hours of sleep a night.
Hydration, trying to aim for the appropriate amount of hydration for yourself. Now I get asked how much should I drink? How much water should I drink a day? How much fluid to drink a day? Just think of it this way, per 25 kilo grams of your body over one liter. And when you started to put that into context. You probably realized God, there have been days where I’ve probably only had maybe one liter, one liter and a half max and I guarantee you you’re under hydrate yourself. There’s no way you can do the the intricate work that you do every day and still feel like you’re going to perform to your best and feel energized. So, definitely think about your hydration levels. The third thing is-[Jaz]
You might know about coffee, then because I’m a huge coffee drinker. I wonder if you know this. They say that if you have black coffee, the content of water, the hydration in that may negate the dehydration effect. Is that is that a myth? Or what’s your rule or advice on coffee? [Rohan]
I personally feel that’s completely fine. And I’ve looked into the research behind caffeine. And they do say that the hydration levels, whatever it is, it helps negate it. So, I call it as a total fluid intake for the day. But what I would say about caffeine and you should bear this in mind is that it has a half life. And I don’t know if you guys remember back in the day learning this at University. But in essence, the half-life of caffeine is six hours. So, if you’re drinking caffeine, and you’re after three or 4pm, and you’re trying to go to sleep at around 10 or 11, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Because it’s still gonna be lingering, your system is still going to be there. And you’re going to be keeping a nighttime, perhaps maybe making being the reason why you’re struggling to sleep and having that broken sleep. So, just give yourself an earlier cut-off point- [Jaz]
It affects everyone differently. Right. So, I could actually have one at 8pm and still go to bed at about 10. I’m a coffee drinker of crazy levels you want to do. [Rohan]
For sure. I mean, to a degree, you’re probably caffeine intolerant, and that you probably actually, you’ll find Jaz, that the impact of caffeine on you perhaps is so different to me. I’m not trying to beat myself up here, but I don’t drink enough coffee because it used to make me quite anxious. But what I’ve noticed now, is the more you drink it, you do have a caffeine tolerance and then that sort of boost and pick me up effect is negated by the fact that you just drink perhaps maybe two or three, four or five throughout the day. So, just maybe just be more mindful of that. Maybe try and consider, perhaps maybe a caffeine detox. [Jaz]
What was interesting research I read on BBC One. So, a couple of times they sort of recycle the same article every 18 months, is that what they found is that the benefits of coffee were truly realized after drinking four or five cups a day. So, they found that actually, coffee is a good thing, but you kind of need to have four or five cups a day to get all their antioxidant benefit. So, when I read that it was a dream to read that it was like an open license to just crack on. But obviously, everything within reason gotta respect your body and how it affects you and your own individual tolerance. [Rohan]
100%. Ultimately comes down to, like I said before, what works for you, for what works for one person may not be the perfect recipe for the other person. If it works for you. It helps you get through a day, then please do but if it’s affecting your sleep, if you’re feeling perhaps maybe a little bit more on edge more anxious, you’re waking up with broken sleep, maybe then you want to think about okay, do I should I scale it back? What time do I finish my coffee intake? Have a look at it that way. [Jaz]
And one thing I really like that you said about just the hydration thing, it’s such a huge thing for me. And some days, I have good days. And some days, I have really bad days. And I feel as though is one thing that I think is the most important thing for me to improve and keep our stay level is having that hydration because I’m so dehydrated. Especially, when you got lots of new patient consultations or checkups. You’re talking, talking, talking, talking, talking, and you’re sometimes running late, because you’re talking so much, and you’re explaining, and you put your heart and soul into it, you’re absolutely parched. Therefore, having that bottle is just a number one hack to have, any other hacks you can give to stay hydrated? [Rohan]
Yeah, I mean, to be honest, I carry. I haven’t got it with me right now. But I have a water bottle, which has the hours of the day written down next to it. And it’s so useful to one liter bottle, and it makes it so idiot proof. It just says, ‘it’s 1pm, have you drank this much?’, ‘it’s 2pm, have you drank this much?’ And that’s just like a gentle reminder to help you kind of keep going. And I sometimes end up realizing I have to like chug because I haven’t done it for a little while. But at least you just have that sort of measurable goal. I think that’s one of the big things is having something measurable to work towards, which will always help us kind of stay on track. The other thing I tend to recommend is, when it comes to lunchtime, dinner time, breakfast time, get one of those half liter bottles like from Kirkland, or even just a glass it just fill it up and drink that glass with your meal. In essence, if you’re doing that you’re getting in some thick. I see one of the biggest, sort of perhaps, maybe sort of mistakes or hurdles we as individuals incorporate when we’re trying to get into a fitter well-being with fitness space is that we tend to try and do too much too quickly. I’m going to take the perfect amount of water and get the perfect amount of steps.
Gonna have the perfect calories going to hit. Six workouts a week. Why run before you can walk. I mean, I usually say to start off by doing something simple. Add a glass of water to your main meal, that will be enough. You start with that then after two or three weeks time of doing that consistently, then build it up. Don’t start looking, as I’ve got this pub podcast, this guy is telling me to drink two liters of water, I’ve only drank half a liter today. Go from 0 to 100 is going to be in essence a recipe for failure. It’s going to set you up for a little bit of disappointment in my eyes.[Jaz]
That kind of like links to one of the the other points I mentioned in my 10 Step Guide is, when it comes to working out. I think, there’ll be a lot of people and a lot of listeners today who will be able to relate to this. The number of times you thought, okay, I don’t feel comfortable how I look, or I don’t feel great right now. I know I need to get into shape. I need to go to the gym. And they’ve gone from doing nothing to try to hit, like I said maybe five or six workouts. No matter what you can do, just do something small. So, the week after, if you know you can do five workouts do two, stick to the two, even if it’s just two simple workouts do two, the week after do another two, the week after that, do two again, once you’ve done it three or four weeks on the charts, and you found it manageable, you will actually realize I can keep this up. The problem is if you go and try and do six workouts in week one, you might keep it up for week one or maybe week two.
But after that, life happens, your kids start crying and saying that I want to play with you. You might want to have to go to, I don’t, go to the cinema, or go for a meal. You will realize you can’t keep that up. And once you feel like you can’t keep that up, it does make you feel a bit frustrated, then you might just sack off the whole mentality of going to the gym. So, rather say stick to something you can manage. And then build it into the point where you realize, okay, this fits now in with what I can do on my day to day life. When you find that sort of solution which fits in and it’s manageable. That’s when you found the right solution for you.[Jaz]
I love that advice. Because what I’ve been affected by, you mentioned it already, Rohan, is this perfectionist attitude we have. And I’ve always been all or nothing. So, if I can’t do a full hour workout, then there’s no point even going. What’s the point of doing a 20 minute. But now I’ve changed my ways. And I know that if I can get that all important 20-30 minutes when I can three, four times a week as my usual aim. I’m so much happier and grateful that I did it. Whereas before I’d be like. There’s no point me going. My dad’s does that, if you can’t get as couple hours in the gym as ours, there’s no point me going. So, I think we’re all susceptible to that. [Rohan]
It’s totally, I think that’s again, it’s one of the reasons why we’re so good at what we do. We don’t do things by half measures. But if you’re looking to do something so drastic like that, it’s just going to be putting yourself In a position which is going to make you feel almost frustrated when you can’t meet it. And the big thing about gym and motivation is that nobody likes doing it even I’ve had moments where I don’t want to go. But what helps me is routine. Routine is crucial. And I think when you find that routine, which works for you Jaz, you’ve got your style. I know what mine is. When I started fitness, it was six times a week.
Now, with the fact that I’ve got two businesses, a lovely wife to come home to, a family I want to spend time with, a social life. And perhaps I need to sit there and plan Invisalign cases and rehab, etc. I know for me four times a week it’s my non-negotiable. And I can do that. And I could stick to that. And it makes me happy when I see that, I’ve ticked that little four workouts in because I can actually stick to it. It is my manageable target. So, I think we need to kind of sometimes take a step back, rather than aiming for what the Men’s Health magazine recommends. We have to recognize our jobs, our lives are very unique. And we need to adapt around that.[Jaz]
Brilliant! So, the advice there guys is to find your non-negotiable, and it doesn’t matter. If you’re not able to do the full whack, try and find something that you can routinely carry out week by week. So, I love that. Let’s go to the final segment, which is I was actually most excited for is DIET. Right? Because this has fascinated me. I know, it’s probably fascinated you and you talk about a lot on your Instagram. So, really excited to actually hear about it. Because I know you’re someone who’s actually sat down and read papers about which diet and in terms of longevity and health and you probably are into that space and then absorb that information.
So, I want to extract that from you. You’ll be like the, here’s my five minute guide more than what all the last research I’ve done last 15 years, etc., right? So, I’d love to know from you. But I’m into intermittent fasting, I’m a big fan. I have a 72-hour fast for charity recently, which is really pushing my limits. And I did it and I was meeting a race of money for Ukrainian refugees and whatnot, which was a noble thing to do. And it went really well. So, thanks to everyone who supported that. But I just wanna know, what kind of diet do you follow yourself? I want to know. Are you vegan? That kind of stuff. And then what do you think from everything you read is the ultimate diet? Because some people like, I know a dentist and she swears by carnivore diet. She actually swears by carnivore. I know some keto fanatics. I know some people who, yeah, so I know some people in all these spaces. Where are you at?[Rohan]
I’m gonna have to be careful what I say. So, I’m a carnivore, I eat meat, but I wouldn’t say I preach any particular diet in per se. Every diet works. And we start by saying that every diet works paleo, keto- [Jaz]
But like, kind of wasn’t like you only eat meat? [Rohan]
No, no. I eat meat, I eat vegetable. I’ll talk about my diet in a second. I have a pretty normal diet. [Jaz]
Because that other dentists I was referring to by the way, she was actually like the following the actual carnivore diet. [Rohan]
Oh, okay. Literally, only meat. Okay. Wow. Okay. [Jaz]
Yeah. Like, you can’t have lagoons and you can’t have this. And it’s very like almost like paleo, but even more extreme than paleo. [Rohan]
So, okay, let me break down what I do. And I’ll tell you about what I think about other diets. In essence, what I kind of preach is an 80/20 rule. If I can eat 80% of the time, whole foods, things which are least moderate processed. So. for example, opting for things like potatoes, rice, grains, couscous, lentils, and then I supplement that with my diet with a good amount of protein. I typically aim for two grams per kilo of my body weight of protein a day. And I try to think 80% of my diet should be Whole Foods, 20% should be crap, i.e., things I enjoy tasty foods, processed foods, cakes, biscuits, sweets. Because for me, having done this now for over a decade. Having worked with hundreds of clients. Having helped people get into shape, I’ve seen what works and what doesn’t work. For some people, it might be like you said, going ketogenic, which means cutting out all the carbs and go really high fats. For some people maybe eating very paleo, so keeping it really natural, very unmodified, unprocessed for some people in- [Jaz]
Hunt together. [Rohan]
Hunt together style. Yeah, if people like yourself who are the- [Jaz]
If, as [Rohan]
If is out here who tend to like to starve themselves for a long period of day. Whatever works for you. And you can enjoy and it works for your fitness goals, your health goals, and you can sustain, that’s the diet you should do. Try them all out. But in my opinion, carbs are bloody tasty, shouldn’t get rid of them. They help you feel energized, they make you feel happy. Why would you want to get rid of them? That’s my personal feeling on them. If works because I think for some people, they like to eat a lot of big portions. And when it comes to calorie control and not putting on weight, keeping that calories down, is the crucial thing. Or if does is gives you a smaller eating window.
So, let’s say you have your dinner at 8pm and you don’t then eat until the next day at 1pm, 2pm, 3pm. You’ve just, in essence reduced an eating window to five maybe six hours of the day. So, what happens then when you’re eating is you have very little time to eat a lot of calories, keeping you fuller for longer, and making sure let you enjoy your meal. So, you could have maybe two, like 1000 calorie meals, which is pretty epic. But I know I’d fall asleep in the chair, if I tried to do that. I don’t think my patients would appreciate me like literally struggling to stay awake while trying to do some on mates. So, what I do is a diet for me, which works for me, which is spread my calories throughout the day. I have three or four main meals, and I just tried to make sure that each of those meals, there is some good veg, there’s some complex carbs in there, like oats or rice or potatoes or pasta, Bagels breads, not bad. Please don’t say breads, bad, by the way, whoever thinks that and they should think they should stick to white bread or brown rice over white rice. You know, there’s so many mess I could debunk right now. But just find the diet which works for you. That’s the crucial thing there.[Jaz]
I think in terms of making time for yourself and, you know, get you care, we care for others, it’s important to care for yourself. And part of that is actually experimenting at various seasons of your life where it’s possible to see which diet is best for you. I’ve had some friends who went keto, their IBS got better, or whatever, you know. And had they not done the due diligence to experiment with their body and it is experimentation. So, you got to kind of make sure it doesn’t affect your patient care. Right. So, I’ve tested that, okay, I can intermittent fast, safely 24 hours without affecting patient care. After 24 hours, I don’t know. Therefore, when I did my 72-hour fast, I make sure I timed it and the weekend I wasn’t working. So, there’s no risk of patients being affected. So, you have to always look at, you know, patient care. Just bring it back to dentistry and how we all can apply it to our lives. [Rohan]
For sure. I mean, I think the biggest thing which everyone should do, if they haven’t done it already, is start tracking their calories. It’s probably a controversial thing. But I feel that we should because when it comes to your general health and fitness, it does come down to a simple calories-in versus calories-out. If you feel that you’re feeling tired and sluggish. And you feel like you’re putting on weight, you’re possibly over consuming too many calories and not moving enough. If you’re feeling like you can’t put on weight, you’re feeling like you’re again tired and sluggish you possibly also under consuming. So, the first thing I would recommend anyone out there who’s listening is go on to the App Store, download my Fitness Pal, it’s free. Have the basic version and just track your calories. You’ll soon realize where you are potentially shooting yourself in the foot and maybe over consuming or under consuming. I mean, one of the big things, and this is one of the things I kind of alluded to earlier Jaz is, dentist, typically, Monday to Friday are very, very good. We’re very mindful. We don’t over eat. We tend to have quite sensible portions become a weekend, I guarantee there’ll be a big portion of us out here who are slamming in the calories or takeaways that alcohol or perhaps maybe undoing a lot of our good healthy habits during the week.
Now, if you start becoming more mindful of where those calories are creeping in. Maybe having four or five pints and having a couple of cheesy chips on the way home and then Nando’s and the Domino’s the day after. When you start adding those up and realizing, okay, maybe I am consuming about five or 6000 calories for the weekend. And you start looking at how you can regulate your portion control, you’ll realize that, okay, I can have a better balance. And it comes back to that point again, where is that balance for you. So, I would definitely recommend start with my Fitness Pal. You will see the foods that you enjoy. Some which are more potentially nourishing. Some which are potentially not as nourishing, more calcolo caloric, and then you will start making better course.[Jaz]
I’m so glad you mentioned the M word mindfulness because as you were saying about calorie counting, it’s not something I practice, but the biggest benefit I see in calorie counting is that you have to then think about your food and look at your food, actually, spend a minute to analyze, okay, what’s inside this? How it’s gonna affect me in my body? And therefore, it’s a means for someone who’s not typically mindful about their food now becomes mindful about what they were eating, which is the great benefit, I think. [Rohan]
Totally! I mean, if I was to be really honest about what I feel the most biggest benefit about My Fitness Pal is, it’s not the actual process of tracking and sticking it in your diaries, it’s like you said, it’s the thought which goes behind it. Once you’ve done it for a couple of weeks. My aim after a while with my clients is for them to have almost a knowledge and understanding about portion-control about nutrition fiber, which one’s going to be processed with fatty trans fats which are potentially risk of heart disease. What are good fats, which are bad fats. So, they now know if they go to a restaurant, how to make the call and a decision which is going to help nourish them.
Now, if for example, you’re a traveling dentist and you’re working up and down the practices across the country, you can’t sit there and track calories, let’s be honest, we know that. But at least you’ll have the understanding, okay, I can make some better decisions whilst I’m traveling up and down this country to choose foods which are going to be potentially less processed, less junkie and they’re going to help me feel good and perhaps maybe hit my nutrition goals and my fitness goals. So, it’s almost that awareness, that understanding which comes through practicing and implementing this over a period of time for you to then become okay, I know what to do now.[Jaz]
Amazing! Well, I’ll put the link to My Fitness Pal. I’m sure everyone can find it quite easily. But we’ll make it helpful for you in the in the show notes I’ll also put Rohan’s Instagram page which you guys should all check out it’s wonderful content. I love the kind of the funny things that you do Rohan. Please tell us your Instagram handle once again. And I think we’ve covered a good few things to help people become healthier and more mindful about everything they’re doing mental health and fitness well-being. [Rohan]
Thank you. So, if you want to follow me check me on Instagram. It’s Dr_RV fitness. I talk about everything fitness, dentistry, alcohol, well-being, mental health, physical health, it’s all a compass. I mean, as I said, I do think if you just do one thing today is to start thinking about yourself, guys. And I promise you, I think that will go a long way in terms of serving you in your professional career, but also your family and career, every aspect of your life will benefit from this. [Jaz]
Amazing! Rohan, thank you so much for your time. I know you’re so busy with clients and whatnot. So again, thanks so much for speaking about something you’re so passionate about as a dentist that’s going to help other dentists. [Rohan]
Thank you very much for being on here. So honored to be a part of this podcast, man, you guys are doing. Jaz, you’re doing an incredible thing to help us, not only improve as dentists but also outside of dentistry. So, I thank you for your time. And I hope everyone’s takes care of themselves and has a lovely day.
Well, there we have it guys, thanks so much for listening all the way to the end. In the show notes, so if you scroll down below, or if you’re watching on the app, you can just scroll down and see all the links that are put on to Rohan’s Instagram page and how to learn more from our hand. And for those of you on the app, you’ll realize that this episode wasn’t eligible for CPD. But don’t worry, I’ve got some really cool things coming just for you Premium Members of the podcast, so you’re gonna get access to my Vertie prep for plonkers entire series, we’re gonna do a 30-day photography challenge.
These are all things I’m working on, as well as access to a walkthrough of a full mouth case from beginning to end with my friend Alan Burgin. So, we’ll talk about a lot of different cases, one to one exclusively for Protrusive Premium. So, if you haven’t already downloaded the app, it’s a free download, go on Android or iOS, and search for Protrusive. And you can download the app straight away. So, if this is your favorite podcast, you need to take action and download it so you can get the maximum out of it. Again, thank you so much for listening all the way to the end. I’ll catch you in the next episode.