#229 Dr. William Shaw, PhD on Organic Acids Testing and GPL TOX Chemical Profile Testing


Dr. William Shaw, the founder of Great Plains Labs, teaches us what chemicals are most toxic, their effects on your health and what you can do to reduce toxin levels in your body. Anyone with a long term gut infection should get a check for oxalates, yeast and chemicals. I provide oxalate testing, chemical profile testing and interpretation with an Organic Acids Test and GPL TOX from Great Plains Lab.

If you’re having health issues or problems detoxing, ridding your body of oxalates can solve a lot of health problems. You also have to rid your body of oxalates before you have any hopes of getting rid of gut or systemic candida infections.


About Dr. William Shaw

Dr. William Shaw is an American chemist, autism researcher and the founder of the Great Plains Laboratory. Dr. Shaw has a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Georgia and a PhD from the Medical University of South Carolina, in biochemistry.

After obtaining his PhD, Dr. Shaw spent six years working at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where he was a supervisory research chemist and the chief of the radioimmunoassay laboratory. His laboratory, the Great Plains Laboratory, which he founded in 1996, specializes in metabolic and nutritional testing, particularly as it pertains to autism.


Evan Brand: Dr. William Shaw is the laboratory director and is board certified in the fields of Clinical Chemistry and Toxicology by the American Board of Clinical Chemistry. Before he founded the Great Plain Laboratory Dr. Shaw worked for the Centers of Disease Control, Children’s Mercy Hospital, University of Missouri, at Kansas City School of Medicine, and SmithKline Laboratories. He’s the author of Biological Treatments for Autism and PDD, originally published in ’98, and Autism: Beyond the Basics, published in 2009. He’s a frequent speaker at conferences worldwide. Dr. Shaw is a stepfather of a child with autism and has helped thousands of patients and medical practitioners to successfully improve the lives of people with autism, ADHD, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, bipolar, chronic fatigue, depression, fibromyalgia, immune deficiencies, MS, OCD, Parkinson’s, seizure disorders, tic disorders, Tourette syndrome, and other serious conditions. God bless you. Dr. Shaw, welcome to the show. 

Dr. William Shaw: Well, I’m really glad to be here [and] have the opportunity to chat with you today.

Evan Brand: Yes, sir! Well, like I mentioned to you right before I pressed record, I’ve been ordering and using your lab for several years now and I’ve probably ordered close to a thousand labs with the combination of the organic acids and the GPL-TOX as well. The glyphosate panel is another great one as well. Could you give us just a bit of background on organic acids and GPL-TOX and some of these really keystone, foundational tests that your clinic offers?

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah! So, the organic acids test really first developed in, probably, around the 1960’s when mass spectrometry was first coupled with gas chromatography to come up with the term – the acronym – GC MS, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. But, really, the addition of high speed computers was what really made the technique amenable for using in a large number of patients because the technique generates tremendous amount of data. And so, it wasn’t until, probably, the early 80’s that really good computer software systems to analyze all the data made the technique first become practical and then in the 90’s things improved even further. And so, there was a real explosion in the abilities to analyze massive amounts of data very quickly.

Evan Brand: Totally.

Dr. William Shaw: So, the gas chromatography combined with mass spectrometry became a useful tool in the field of genetic diseases. When I started working at the children’s hospital I wanted to expand it further to test all the things like vitamins and other nutritional factors and, also, to expand it into the area for testing dysbiosis. What I suspected is that these other factors were actually much more common causes of diseases than the purely genetic diseases. So, even today, most of the organic acid testing throughout the world is just focused on these inborn errors of metabolism while ignoring some of the other important aspects: the nutritional factors and the dysbiosis factors which, for a large part, I was responsible for developing these and making them useful for the average physician to use in treating the patients. It became something where people were only seeing maybe one case in several thousand where genetic disease showed up whereas, with the dysbiosis markers, maybe 50% of the patients had abnormalities that could be treated based on looking at the abnormal products of the intestinal flora.

Evan Brand: Totally. Now, Dr. Kurt Woeller, when I had him on the podcast, he said: “Evan, you’ve got to start running the GPL-TOX on every new client.” It’s an extra investment so [with] some clients we do it later down the road and [with] some of the clients I don’t do it straight out of the gate. How did this GPL-TOX come onto the radar? How did you put this thing together? This is – what – a 168 toxic chemicals that you’re testing for now?

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah! It’s expanded. I think it’s a 172 currently. The goal was to make toxic chemical testing available for the average person. So, it was a real difficult situation because most people don’t know what toxic chemicals they’ve been exposed to. Now, some people do and that makes it [easier]. Like [if there’s] an agricultural worker and they’re only using one particular organophosphate, well then they’ve got a pretty good idea of what they’re exposed to. But, the average person doesn’t have any idea at all. If they wanted to check for all those 172 compounds that they may have been exposed to, they’d have to do a separate test for each of those 172 and at a price between a hundred to two hundred dollars. They’d easily spend over 20,000 dollars if they did each of these tests separately at a common clinical lab that offered those tests. I saw that that wasn’t just practical. It wasn’t economically viable. People didn’t have that kind of money. So, in essence, people were being deprived of the ability to find out what was making them sick. And, I thought, if we can put – it’s not everything – but if we put together a package that includes some of the most common toxic chemicals to which people are exposed, having that information would greatly increase the chance that they would find out what’s making them sick, and, more importantly, then be able to become treated and get their health back as a result. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for many, many years. I saw that the lab testing was really – having an affordable lab test was really the main impediment for people not being able to get well because they have no idea which toxic chemicals they have been exposed to.

Evan Brand: Totally. Now, so you’ve got your hands in a lot of different categories in terms of sources of toxicity. What are the biggest culprits for you? I know [that] with the GPL-TOX we got insecticides, weed killers, and cleaning agents, and plastics, and packing materials, and styrenes, and ethylbenzenes, and all these crazy stuff. And then, we’ve just got your standard gasoline additives, we’ve got your glyphosate. In your eyes, when you’re looking at someone, what is the biggest culprits of illness? If you could point a finger at a top 1, 2, and 3 issues.

Dr. William Shaw: I guess the biggest things are those things that are put on your food because everybody is eating food. So, the herbicides, the pesticides – those are really things of major concern because some of the population is able to afford organic foods. Organic foods are – by the way, organic means that they haven’t been treated with pesticides and herbicides and those kind of things but they’re more expensive, [but] as time goes on, the demand grows [and] I think the price will come down so a greater number of people could afford it. But, if I’d have the hazard to guess I would guess, in the United States, 90% of people are not eating organic food every day. They’re eating the food that is exposed to herbicides and pesticides and other kinds of chemicals. That’s one of the biggest risks.

Evan Brand: So, let me ask you this: if you go all organic, which is my intention, unless I’m going out somewhere and I’m just trying to source as high quality as I can at a restaurant, are you reducing a massive amount of risk of going fully organic or are you still going to have toxicity? For example, for me, like the gasoline additives, which I want to talk with you about, those showed up super high. So, it’s like even though my diet was good I still had toxicity in a whole other category. 

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah. So, that’s true. It’s worth talking about a particular gasoline additive and they’re called – the initials, the acronyms, for these chemicals are the MTBE and ETBE. They’re very closely chemically related water soluble molecules that are added to gasoline to increase the octane, which means giving a smooth explosion in the cylinders of the gasoline. It’s the typical story. These things were put in gasoline as a replacement for the organic led which, of course, was a big problem because so many people were getting exposed to led and all the harm that led does. And so, it’s a typical thing – you take out one toxic chemical that has a lot of research to prove its toxicity and what you put in its place is something that has no research on it and with the knowledge that it’s going to take 10, 20, 30 years to develop a rap sheet to be able to exclude that chemical from the environment – to get it out. Unfortunately, this is the way [the] industry works and, of course, I think the way it should work is if you’re taking one chemical out you *should have (15:04) to do a whole array of tests to make sure it doesn’t have the same kind of toxicity that the previous ingredient [had]. But, things aren’t like that now and that’s what the big problem is.

Evan Brand: I agree. Okay. So, we’ve got –

Dr. William Shaw: The led was taken out and instead this MTBE and ETBE were put into the gasoline and this gasoline is stored in – when you go to the service station, there’s a huge underground, steel container and what happens is steel is partly iron and iron eventually rusts and then as it rusts through, that gasoline starts leaking out of that tank and if there’s any underwater streams near that gas station, they’re gonna pick-up the gasoline and its additive which – the MTBE is very water-soluble. So, instead of just staying near the drum underground, it starts moving into the underground stream and pretty soon the entire water supply’s contaminated. That’s one of the things that happened in Santa Monica, California. One of the very wealthy beach communities. A large portion of their total water supply was contaminated and they, of course, for something like more than 10 years they had to pump in water from other locations to serve their community. Eventually, they filed a number of successful lawsuits to help to pay for it but you can see this is a really bad situation. And, the biggest problem is all of these chemicals [are] being introduced at a rate that is much faster than the ability to access what the potential dangers are. So, the people looking at the potential health risk are always behind the eight ball. They’re always trying to play catch-up in finding out what’s going on. Typically, they are 10 or even 20 years behind in coming up with regulatory measures that help to control the toxicity of these things. One of the worst things is the glyphosate which is being put on – they almost tend to put it on our entire food supply throughout the world.

Evan Brand: Can we talk about glyphosates specifically? What is it doing?  Is it damaging the mitochondria or – what’s it actually doing?

Dr. William Shaw: That’s one of the things that glyphosates can do at a high concentrations, it damages the mitochondria. As a matter of fact, a whole array of toxic chemicals in the GPL-TOX test can damage the mitochondria which is extremely important because it is the power supply of the cells. So, each of the cells have anywhere from one to a thousand mitochondria. You can think of them as small batteries that are supplying the cells with energy in the form of what is called adenosine triphosphate or ATP. It’s like the universal energy packets for, virtually, all living things [that] use that same energy source and if that’s disrupted, you lack energy to do the things you want to do. The two places where you use the most energy are your muscles and your brain. They utilize a tremendous amount of energy and so, if that’s impaired, you’re gonna have exercise intolerance or, if your brain is impaired, you’re gonna have a neurologic ora variety of psychiatric symptoms as a result of these chemicals impairing your brain function due to impairing your mitochondria.

Evan Brand: Sure. Now, we’ve also seen what people – I don’t know why people are so scared to say that it’s causation but we’ve seen all these correlation studies where we track autism rates going up with the amount of glyphosate that has been applied.

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: Can you speak on that because you’ve got a case study that you just presented which – I’m sure you’ll give me the details but, I believe, it was triplets…

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: ...with autism and glyphosate was involved here. 

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah. And so, the epidemiologic studies are very worrisome because they show almost a 100% relationship between the amount of glyphosate used for two of the major food crops: soy and corn, and the rate of autism. 30 years ago, the rate of autism was extremely low and it was like 1 in 1500 or 1 in 2000. Studies have shown that this increase is not just due topeople [being] more proficient in diagnosing autism, the increased efficacy and the diagnosis of autism perhaps accounts for maybe 10% of the increase in the rate of autism but 90% are new cases and you don’t have autism rates increasing because of increased genetic mutations. The rate of genetic mutations is fairly constant over time. So, it has to be due to environmental causes. So, the suspicion is that glyphosate could be one of the major causes and I think having a case study helps to confirm the concern over whether or not this glyphosate is causative in autism. So, now, we have a scientific paper that was published just about a month ago [that] was able to show that the glyphosate was extremely elevated in these three children. Two of the children – the two boys – had autism and the girl had a suspected seizure disorder but they all showed – first of all, they had signs of mitochondrial dysfunction and the children all had markedly elevated amounts of glyphosate compared to the average person in the United States.

Evan Brand: What was their read-out on your glyphosate panel? What was their number? I know on the lower limit –

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah. So, the average value was around 1.5 and their values were like 30 or higher. So, they were like 20 to 25 times the average value of people in the United States. Of course, there’s no evidence that even these small amounts of glyphosate might not be harmful in the long run. And so, that doesn’t mean because the average person has a relatively small value that that’s of no concern, it’s that it’s more difficult to point to things that might not show up until you’ve been exposed for 10 years, 20 years, or 30 years. That’s the difficulty. It doesn’t mean even those lower amounts are actually safe. So, there were several things that were unusual about the triplets and the first thing is that their values was very high. When I talked to the mother of the children, what she indicated is that corn tortillas were one of the kids’ favorite foods and, of course, these corn tortillas that – the vast majority of corn in the United States is now what is called the “genetically modified” brand of corn, and even though that’s of somewhat of concern, the main concern with this particular genetically modified corn is that the corn has been genetically modified so that it resists huge exposures to glyphosate that’s used as a weed killer. And so, when the glyphosate has been applied to these corn plants, the corn plant picks up all this glyphosate from the soil and so the resulting corn is contaminated with glyphosate. Recently, this reached the news that the Department of Agriculture was going to be checking the high fructose corn syrup which is coming from this genetically modified corn to see if it had glyphosate, but that study was killed. And so, I’m sure this was politics as usual…

Evan Brand: Geez.

Dr. William Shaw: …and getting pressure from the pesticide and herbicide companies to put blindfolds over us so we can’t see what’s going on.

Evan Brand: Good lord.

Dr. William Shaw: So, these triplets had been eating these corn tortillas and had these very high glyphosate values. Once the parent found out, she put the children on an organic food diet and a number of the children had substantial reductions in some of their autistic behaviors by switching to the organic foods only. And so, the mechanisms in each of the children had markers in the organic acid test or the GPL-TOX test that indicated mitochondrial dysfunction. In addition, the children with autism had high amounts of certain clostridia bacteria. The companies that are producing this – they claim [that], well, these chemicals aren’t toxic to mammals because mammals don’t have the biochemical pathway that glyphosate inhibits but the problem is our intestinal flora has bacteria that are susceptible. So, all our beneficial bacteria, the beneficial e-coli, the beneficial lactobacillus, the beneficial *…bacteria (28:04) had exactly the same enzymes that the weeds do and are killed by the glyphosate. And so, what happens is the beneficial bacteria is being wiped out and when that happens – almost anyone has small amounts of harmful bacteria that proliferate bacterial life like clostridia bacteria, like salmonella and it’s been found that animals that are fed these GMO corn that has [been] contaminated with glyphosate were developing high amounts of these harmful bacteria in their intestine. Turkeys that were fed this had high amounts of salmonella and clostridia in their intestinal tract. There were even instances of large farm animals like cows that were developing what they call “downer syndrome” which is due to the presence of certain clostridia. The [botulinum] is one of the clostridia species and some cows were found with botulism. There’s even one report of a farmer himself who got, *they call it(29:34), botulism which conceivably could have been due to the action of the glyphosate knocking out the beneficial intestinal organisms.

Evan Brand: That’s insane! So, not only are these children who are put on antibiotics like candy when they’re children, not only are the antibiotics wiping out the microbiome but you’ve got glyphosate in the diet that’s doing the same thing. So, this is really a double whammy.

Dr. William Shaw: That’s right! So, some of the antibiotics can do the same thing but most of the time the antibiotics are used for short periods of time like one week or maybe ten days whereas as these foods are being fed every single day. And so, this is probably a bigger problem than the use of the antibiotics. Of course, some people know or [are] getting educated to the fact that if you’re taking antibiotics then you need to take probiotics at the end of the treatment to restore the beneficial bacteria. But, virtually, no one is getting the message that your entire food supply is being altered by this glyphosate contaminated food and you need more probiotics. But, the problem is the probiotics are gonna be killed by the glyphosate.

Evan Brand: Yup. I think you’re –

Dr. William Shaw: They’re gonna continue to be killed.

Evan Brand: I bet you’re probably familiar with her but a woman named Dr. Monika Krüger – she had a study that founded only 0.1 part per billion of glyphosate was enough to destroy beneficial gut bacteria.

Dr. William Shaw: Ah, that’s a very interesting fact, yes. It shows that this is probably a much more important threat to our intestinal health than the antibiotics although they’re also important. Having most of your food contaminated with this is considerately a bigger problem. What people don’t realize is that not only is the glyphosate used in the GMO foods like soy and corn, it’s also used as a desiccant in which they apply it to foods like wheat, near the harvest time to cause it to dry up and cause the green parts of the wheat to brown so it’s easier to harvest. So, you have foods like wheat which are not GMO which are also being contaminated with glyphosate as well. There are also claims that you don’t need to worry about it because the half-life is only a few days but recent work has shown that when glyphosate reacts with a number of metals, it may form complexes that may persist for, sometimes, nearly 30 years. So, you’re having a huge increase depending on the nature of the soil on which these chemicals are spread.

Evan Brand: Sure. So, a listener of my show sent me an article by this woman called “Moms Across America” and it’s this blog post that came out a couple of weeks ago where she was going over to Japan to speak about the health risk of GMO and toxins and she found this research and study that was showing that Japan and Korea have almost triple the rates of autism as we have in the United States. Their rates are greater than 1 in every 30 children having autism and then she put that side by side with the increased use of agrochemicals and, once again, it correlated perfectly. So, it seems like over in Japan and these other countries – they’re using even more.

Dr. William Shaw: So, they’re using glyphosate as well...

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. William Shaw: …in Japan and Korea, now.

Evan Brand: Yeah. I’ll send you this. I’ll make sure to get your email before we get off this call today.

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: I want to send you this article because looking at the charts are just frightening. Now, let me ask you this, if you go a 100% organic does that eliminate ninety plus percent of the problem? Granted [that] we got phthalates and other chemicals that I’d like to talk with you about but regarding glyphosate, if you go a 100% organic, is that the best thing you can do?

Dr. William Shaw: I mean, I’d say going organic is the best single thing you can do to eliminate a lot of different chemicals. So, glyphosate is one but another common weed killer has been combined with glyphosate, they call it Duo Enlist which is both 2, 4-D – the chemical that was in the Agent Orange – and what was in some of the children with autism that had extremely high values of the 2, 4-D which also is a very serious inhibitor of mitochondrial function. Also, there’s still significant amounts of organophosphate pesticides and other pesticides like the pyrethroid compounds are also used on some foods. So, the single best thing you can do for yourself if you’ve got the financial means to do it is to go organic. The difficulty is there are very few restaurants that have adopted an organic menu, they’re few and far between. There are some but they’re pretty, pretty limited.

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. William Shaw:  So, that’s probably the biggest problem: that if you’re going out to eat you’re not getting organic foods at probably 98% or maybe the 99% of restaurants.

Evan Brand: So, how do you deal with that? Are you married? Do you and your wife ever go out to restaurants or do you just never go out to eat?

Dr. William Shaw: We do! So, we’d wonder - *…(36:32) I guess I haven’t gotten that. I just figured that at home we eat organic all the time.

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. William Shaw: But we go out to eat. We just kind of ignore that and even do in my own testing even with the organic diet, except with the restaurants. I have values that are pretty low but I still see traces of organophosphates in my own sample.

Evan Brand: So, let me ask you this then, if you go to a Mexican restaurant are you going to for, like, fajitas but you’re going to omit the corn tortillas or you just go all in? I don’t care. I’m going to eat the corn tortilla anyway.

Dr. William Shaw: (laughs) I think I would be wanting to get organic corn tortillas if I were going out. I think I would probably skip the corn tortillas knowing that – 

Evan Brand: So, here’s what I do. If I am going to do corn – I know we’re going to a Mexican restaurant for example – I’ll source the highest quality steak that I can get and I’ll bring my own organic blue corn with me.

Dr. William Shaw: Ah! That’s a good idea, yeah!

Evan Brand: I just put it in my wife’s purse and bring it. So, if we do like organic blue corn chips and then we’re gonna put some guacamole on there, I’ll just do it that way. It makes me feel a lot better.

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah. Oh! By the way, I think Chipotle is one of the restaurants that advertises organic only. That’s a good option for those who want to avoid most of the herbicides and pesticides, providing they’re being honest in their claims. But, that is their claim – that they are doing organic sourcing.

Evan Brand: Right. Now, I want to ask you this, when I got my GPL-TOX test back, on number 11 there which was the acronym of NAHP and then it says “parent propylene oxide”. 

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: You’ve got the lower level there of 4.0. You’ve got seventy-fifth percentile at 101. I was at a 574, which puts me off the charts.

Dr. William Shaw: Wow.

Evan Brand: Now, it says due to the production of plastics and uses of fumigants. Where in the world did I get exposed to this?

Dr. William Shaw: It could very well be – this is another – it could be your food. The food was harvested [and] to keep the insects out of the harvested food they may have sprayed the stack of harvested grains with the stuff to wipe out any potential insects or rodents or things like that.

Evan Brand: Now, would that have been before I went organic? Could this stuff have been in my body [for] 5, 10, 15 years?

Dr. William Shaw: No. I seriously doubt that, unless you had some massive exposures, in which case you’d be leaking out small amounts of this stuff for decades, I guess, if you had. The most likely explanation is this was in some recent food that you took in.

Evan Brand: Wow.

Dr. William Shaw: That is the most likely thing. So, we mentioned food, the other important thing is purified water. So, as I mentioned, this MTBE and ETBE were common water contaminants so one of the things you can do to reduce your toxic chemical exposure is to just take the reverse osmosis purified water. This is available at, virtually, every grocery store. [They] have one of these purification systems where you can bring your own water containers and fill them up. We get ours delivered to us at home in big carboys, with our reverse osmosis water. So, that’s the other option. Of course, you can get complete systems but that’s more expensive. Getting the home delivery is a pretty good option [and] not overly expensive.

Evan Brand: Yeah. So, I use the – 

Dr. William Shaw: They’re about 6 bucks.

Evan Brand: The Berkey System is what I use and they published all this research where, supposedly, they remove every type of organophosphate and pesticide and chemical with their system. That’s what I’ve settled on. I don’t know if you know about that one or not.

Dr. William Shaw: No, no, I wasn’t aware of that particular system.

Evan Brand: Okay, back to GPL-TOX. If we’re looking at the organophosphates like the DEP on number 15, I was at a 25 and your lower limit is 0.6. Would that be the same exposure? Some type of food that was just sprayed with] some type of pesticide?

Dr. William Shaw: I mean, that’s the most, by far, likely explanation. Although, in some areas of the country you could be sprayed just sitting in your backyard next to your swimming pool and a plane comes over and sprays you or – I’ve had accounts of individuals who had organic farms on which they were severely contaminated. So, the couple who had the organic farm – the woman was a naturopath [and] her husband was an organic farmer – they’re completely organic but she said: “He comes in, takes a shower, completely cleans off, but the next morning you can see an outline of his body, yellowed chemicals, coming out of his body” and it’s due to the fact that his neighbors are not organic and so all that stuff is moved by the wind. So, even eating just organic doesn’t completely eliminate contamination because of the wind and the rain. A recent study found that in some areas a 100% of the rain samples were contaminated with glyphosate. And, in other areas, a high percentage of the air samples were also glyphosate contaminated. So, these kind of things are prevalent and they’re completely working their way into our total environment, making it difficult to get rid of. That said, I would still say [that] going organic really makes a difference. So, in that case study I mentioned, one of the children was retested and, after a few weeks of organic diet, his glyphosate reduced about 95%.

Evan Brand: Woah! Now, let me –

Dr. William Shaw: So, big *… (4:19)

Evan Brand: Now, let me ask further on that. All that was changed was going from conventional GMO glyphosate sprayed corn tortillas – just going organic reduced 95%? We’re not talking about implementing …

Dr. William Shaw: Yes.

Evan Brand: … sauna or anything else?

Dr. William Shaw: Right. That was just changing the diet and…

Evan Brand: What?

Dr. William Shaw: …I’m sure if you went to saunas as well you’re gonna get even better. So, we have seen one case with autism where the child was like 20 or 30 times the upper limit of normal and went from that value to undetectable amounts after about 3 months of saunas.

Evan Brand: Oh my god.

Dr. William Shaw:  So, sauna is very effective. I always recommend the dual approach: the organic diet, purified water, and sauna – that’s the best way to go. We’ve seen significant improvements in a variety of health issues with that combination of treatment. And then, in addition, about 50% of the chemicals we test for in the GPL-TOX are removed by glutathione. So, adding some glutathione or N-Acetyl Cysteine as a supplement can be very helpful in helping to accelerate the removal of about half the chemicals that we test for.

Evan Brand: Perfect. Now, are we talking far infrared saunas and what temperature and how long are we talking for most people?

Dr. William Shaw: In actuality, probably any type of sauna will do the job. The advantages of infrared might be that it is tolerated easier or something like that but as far as efficacy, it doesn’t appear [that] there’s any increase [in] efficacy. This is really, I guess, just mainly a question ofcomfort… 

Evan Brand: So, however you sweat –

Dr. William Shaw: ...that certain saunas may be better.

Evan Brand: As long as you sweat –

Dr. William Shaw: Whatever is needed to make you sweat – that is probably the number one issue with it. Whatever it is that make you sweat, that will do the job.

Evan Brand: Okay. And –

Dr. William Shaw: If you live in a hot, humid environment, I guess, just (chuckles) running or jogging will probably also do a pretty good job if you could do that but a lot of people may not be that athletic especially if they have severe toxicity, they may have some fatigue issues due to the chemicals affecting their mitochondrial function.

Evan Brand: Now, what about the other 50% of those chemicals? What do you do for those?

Dr. William Shaw: Those would be mainly diet. So, for example, organophosphates are not accelerated, they are excreted. Detoxification is not increased by glutathione. So, the organic diet is especially important, and the purified water, and the sauna but glutathione will not help. Probably, the other thing that would help those would probably be increasing the B vitamins, which would probably increase the rate of excretion of the organophosphate because of the enzymes that detoxifies those is linked to a number of nutritional co-enzymes.

Evan Brand: Perfect. I watched your talk – your presentation – last year that you did on toxic chemicals and increasing rates of chronic illness and you had a slide that was all about styrofoam and how bad styrofoam cups and plates are. You had all these symptoms of dizziness and heart palpitations and tremor and all sorts of crazy symptoms where people would probably get diagnosed with things like Parkinson’s but, in reality, it could just be something like styrene and benzene toxicity. That was just mind-blowing. 

Dr. William Shaw: Yep, it is, and what I suspect is that many of what people consider the symptoms of the ageing are really not due to ageing at all. All it is is that you’ve been around for a certain number of years and if each year you pick up a certain number of toxic chemicals, many times, these accumulate faster than your body can eliminate that. If you think about it, your body has been molded by thousands of years of evolution, until the last hundred years, our ancestors were [not] exposed to huge amounts of toxic chemicals because they were all inventions, they did not exist on planet Earth. So, our bodies didn’t adapt mechanisms for getting rid of huge amounts of these things because we didn’t need to. We were living in the garden of Eden, so to speak. And so, when these chemicals are added to our environment, we have some ability to detoxify but when you get a steady stream of these things they build up over time. So, many of these diseases like Parkinson’s and tremors and things like – and even probably Alzheimer’s are a result of the total accumulative load of toxic chemicals that people build up over a lifetime. The individual who just published on reversing Alzheimer’s in a group of patients with Alzheimer’s – one of the things that he was using was detoxification. If the Alzheimer’s patient had exposure totoxic chemicals that was one of his standard things that he was doing. So, it makes sense. Just a couple of nights ago I was thinking what would be a good analogy to this. The fishing boats were going out in the Bering Sea and it was really cold and it was stormy and so the spray was coming up and forming ice on all their crab cages. They said: well, once this reaches a certain stage, it will sink the boat; there’ll be such a weight of ice. So, that’s exactly what’s going on with ageing. Instead of ice condensing, we’ve got toxic chemicals that are condensing in our tissues and our fat, our liver, and all our other organs. It just keep accumulating until, eventually, we sink. So, really, you really just need to get rid of that stuff and so many people don’t know that that’s an option. It really needs to become part of standard treatment for the common diseases and ageing like Parkinson’s and other essential tremors and other kinds of neurologic things that become more common with ageing.

Evan Brand: I agree a 100%. I tell people all the time [that] organic is special and it’s wonderful and all of that but, at the end of the day, everything used to be organic. So, it’s not like it’s some brand new thing – “Oh, organic! Wow! This is so cool!”…

Dr. William Shaw: (chuckles) That’s right!

Evan Brand: …It’s like: no, we’re just returning to what it was.

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah, that’s what the great-grandparents – that’s all they ate!

Evan Brand: Everything was grass-fed and organic and hand-crafted or hand-picked. It’s like, okay, that’s just doing what my great-grandma did on the farm in Southern Kentucky.

Dr. William Shaw: You didn’t have to pay extra for that at all. (chuckles)

Evan Brand: I know!

Dr. William Shaw: It’s what everybody got for the same regular price. 

Evan Brand: Well, I guess, every restaurant would have been organic and grass-fed too if you went to the diners in the 50’s. I don’t know when this stuff really started to get toxic but I wonder if during my grandparents’ teenage years…

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: …if they were still getting quality or were they already getting glyphosate at that age in the 50’s. What do you think?

Dr. William Shaw: That was probably – no, no. Glyphosate, I would guess, was around the 80’s or so [when] it first became big, at least started off. Of course, now, it’s more than 90% of corn and soy in the United States are of that type.

Evan Brand: Yeah, you’re spot on! It was discovered to be an herbicide by a Monsanto chemist, John E. Franz in 1970. Monsanto brought glyphosate to market in 1974 under the tradename “Roundup” and their last commercially relevant patent expired in the year 2000.

Dr. William Shaw: Uh-huh.

Evan Brand: You want to know something crazy? It doesn’t add to the conversation except to tell you that it’s crazy and I’m sure you’ve seen it before – the last house my wife and I lived at, the neighbor across the street, she’d go out in short shorts and a tank top and flip flops and had a giant container of weed killer and just walked around the property just spraying her toes, basically, as she’s spraying the cracks in her driveway.

Dr. William Shaw: (chuckles)

Evan Brand: I thought: This lady – oh my god. I almost wanted to go over there and then I thought:  You know what, I don’t even want to get sprayed. She’d probably spray me if I walked over there.

Dr. William Shaw: I know a couple that had a toddler and they had one of the lawn services and they let the child out crawling around the lawn just a short time after the lawn was treated and the child immediately went into some intractable seizures. And, five years later, the child was still extremely impaired…

Evan Brand: Are you kidding?

Dr. William Shaw: …from that exposure.

Evan Brand: Holy smokes.

Dr. William Shaw: No, unfortunately. That is the case.

Evan Brand: Now, I know it gets weird with words you could use and can’t use but can you successfully reverse autism if you get these toxic loads down or is it a trigger where once it’s triggered you can only backtrack to previous function but you’ll never get back to the way you were before the autism was triggered?

Dr. William Shaw: I know of some cases where reversal was once essentially complete. And, what I found is that the younger the child, the greater the possibility of reversal. The brain has plasticity. In other words, it’s able to reshape, reform, and reconfigure. And so, the greatest plasticity is when the child is the youngest. So, if the child is having some problems, the best time to treat it is soon as the parents notice that there is some kind of significant problem – the child is not speaking or the child’s not making eye contact or the child’s doing unusual, repetitive behavior – that’s the time to start in on the testing, I would say, even before the diagnosis is made. Some people waste so much time worrying about what is the specific name – is it ADD? Is it autism? Is it PDD? Is it something else? – and that’s not important. The most important thing to find out is has your child been exposed to something that is impairing them. Don’t put that much focus on the diagnosis, put the focus on helping the child to recover from whatever abnormality they’re demonstrating.

Evan Brand: So, what options are available besides the clean water and the organic food for children? What else is available for treatment?

Dr. William Shaw: Oh, there’s many, many things. I guess, nutritional treatment with a whole host of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, cholesterol. There’s a treatment for abnormal intestinal flora which is prevalent in autism, especially the yeast and abnormal bacteria like clostridia. There are a number of other nutritional supplements like carnitine, carnosine. So, there’s really a whole host of things that can be done. Food allergies really play a very common role and, in some children, the exposure to mold is a significant problem. So, these environmental triggers can be addressed and are helpful in getting rid of all the toxic chemicals to which the child is exposed. Those are all really common things that have been used successfully in a lot of children to improve. So, I would say the vast majority of children with autism that are treated get better and some completely recover. So, it can be extremely beneficial. The other kinds of things are behavioral therapy [which] also helps apply behavioral analysis. But, I would say that fixing the underlying biochemistry is going to give you much better results. The behavioral therapy to help to catch up a child who’s been delayed is useful but you will get the best bang for the buck – the behavioral therapy buck – by giving it to a child whose underlying biochemistry has been normalized.

Evan Brand: Sure. Now, I know we’re running out of time. It’s just good to know that all the work that I’m doing on the gut is important for this. My youngest client is a 3-year old little girl and she’s not autistic but she does have some – whether you call it ADHD, like you said, it doesn’t matter what’s going on but there are some things that are off that [the] mom sensed and she reached out to me. We had her gut tested and she had tons of infections. She had multiple parasites. She had bacterial infections. She had yeast overgrowth. We’re working on the gut now and, obviously, dialing in the diet and things seem to be improving pretty rapidly. So, that’s really cool to understand the mechanism behind that. Now, I forgot to ask you – what was the age of the children who were in that study? They were eating those corn tortillas. How old were they?

Dr. William Shaw: Let’s see, they were first noticing when they were around 2 years old that something wasn’t right and by the time this was reversed I think they were around the age of 4 or so when they first got tested and had the dietary changes to remove the non-organic corn tortillas. In fact, the mother said there’s virtually none of the food was organic [and] just switching that out made a major difference. So, I think, even if families can’t afford organic diet all the time, they may want to consider it especially for the young children.

Evan Brand: Sure.

Dr. William Shaw: And especially, I’d say, for any pregnant women, that would be the thing that’s going to most greatly insure a successful pregnancy and healthy children. So, during pregnancy and, I would say, the first 4 or 5 years of life would be the most critical time. If you can’t afford it forever for all the family, at least if you can afford it for the children at that age range.

Evan Brand: Well said. I know you see this – you’ll see people complain about the price of organic but then they’re in a Mercedes SUV that costs 70,000 dollars and they go home to their 400,000 dollar house.

Dr. William Shaw: (chuckles) Right!

Evan Brand: But they don’t eat organic!

Dr. William Shaw: (laughs)

Evan Brand: Oh, you can’t afford organic? Okay. You’ve got a Mercedes SUV. Your husband drives an Escalade. You’ve got Netflix. You’ve got two jet skis. You’ve got a boat that you go out on the weekends. You’ve got a real estate property in the mountains that you got to in the summer for vacation. You just went to Disneyworld. But, you can’t eat organic. I think there is just a mismatch of priorities in most people.

Dr. William Shaw: Yep. And, I think those people just don’t realize. They just haven’t – they need to get the information out that this is not a fad or something…

Evan Brand: I know! It’s crazy!

Dr. William Shaw: ...like that. It’s a way of helping your children in the most important time of their life. It’s when their brain is under rapid development.

Evan Brand: I agree! My wife just got us some strawberries today and I think the organic version was $3.99 for a pound versus $2.99 for conventional. And, I hate how they call it “conventional”. I don’t know about you but it bugs me that they say “conventional”. I think they should label it “chemical”. They should –

Dr. William Shaw: They should label it “chemically damaged” (laughs) or something like that.

Evan Brand: Yeah! Yeah. It’s like, oh, this is just conventional strawberries?  To me, that sounds a little bit too benign. I think it should have a sign warning: “These strawberries have been sprayed with glyphosate. Dr. Shaw from Great Plains Laboratory can test you and we can show that glyphosate does this and this and this or you can just pay one dollar more and you can get organic. Now what would you like to get, ma’am?” You know what I mean? That’s the way it should be put there.

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah, yeah.

Evan Brand: Man, [it’s been] such a blast. I definitely want to stay in contact with you. I would love to have you back on the show. I mean, I’ve got tons of case studies I could can show you and stuff I’ve been doing behind the scenes in terms of looking at organic acids…

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah!

Evan Brand: …and some of the GPL-TOX I’m been looking at. I had a woman who said she’d been drinking well water for 20 or 25 years and she promised that it got tested 20 years ago. I said, “Ma’am, a lot of things have changed in the last 20 years in terms of fracking and other sorts of damage to the groundwater”. She had some of the worst MTBE and ETBE levels I’ve ever seen and yet she had an organic diet. So, I had to point a finger at that well water.

Dr. William Shaw: Uh-huh – at the water – that’s the most likely source, yeah.

Evan Brand: So, awesome. Dr. Shaw, any last words of wisdom or things you’d like to share with people?

Dr. William Shaw: Well, one of the things is that you can get a good indicator of toxicity on the organic acid test. There’s one marker that’s especially good which is succinic acid. So, [when] succinic acid is elevated the chances are extremely high that you have some kind of toxic exposure. And so, individuals who have that marker elevated should seriously consider getting both the metals testing as well as the GPL-TOX test to identify which toxic chemical are causing their mitochondrial impairment.

Evan Brand: Okay. And, Dr. Shaw, correct me if I’m wrong but, for all my clients listening, that’s going to be number 24 on your organic acids. So, whip it out, look at number 24, [and] see where you’re at. 

Dr. William Shaw: Yeah.

Evan Brand: Okay, awesome.

Dr. William Shaw: Yep. 

Evan Brand:  Well, thank you so much! I look forward to keeping in touch with you and thanks again for your wisdom. I’m hopeful! We’re making some changes – organic – believe it or not! Walmart is getting a lot of organic produce. They’ve got organic strawberries. They’ve got organic blueberries. My grandmother sent me a picture the other day – what did she find? Organic broccoli, organic mixed vegetables at Walmart and it’s their Great Value brand. So, they are stepping up their game and these big food companies are turning the tide. I think we are in a hopeful place but I don’t know if you’ve got a bigger dream than this but my biggest dream is [to] completely remove glyphosate from the planet – just get rid of this stuff. It’s ridiculous. It need to be banned today and never sprayed ever again.

Dr. William Shaw: I agree.

Evan Brand: Do you have any bigger dreams than glyphosate being banned? Just curious.

Dr. William Shaw: Well, I’d just like to get to the point where the vast majority of food on Earth is organic variety and making that available for everyone.

Evan Brand: Me too, me too. Well, Dr. Shaw, thank so much again for your time. [It was] definitely, definitely a pleasure chatting with you and [I] appreciate your hard work over the years and dedication to bringing these lab tests to the public. I will continue spreading the message about these and, anybody listening to this show, just contact me and we can get you tested and figure out what in the world your levels are. I’ll tell you, after I saw my GPL-TOX results Ibought a sauna immediately. That was the first thing I did.

Dr. William Shaw: (chuckles) Yeah. That’s the best thing you can do for yourself with toxic chemicals – one of the best treatments. 

Evan Brand: I forgot to ask this and I’m sorry I’m taking up more of your time than I promised you but the role of breastfeeding mothers – I would assume it’s equally important for them to be eating organic as well because this glyphosate, I assume, would pass through breastmilk. Is that –

Dr. William Shaw: That’s exactly correct. The best thing that a breastfeeding mother can do is to have the cleanest diet possible and that includes an organic diet.

Evan Brand: Okay. And, coffee – is coffee bad? Is that sprayed? People going to Starbucks – is that –

Dr. William Shaw: I think that’s probably also an issue. There is probably, just like any other food crop that is susceptible to chemical exposure. I don’t know whether glyphosate is an issue with coffee or not at this stage but I’m sure that there could be some exposure to other toxic chemicals. If you have the option [of] using organic coffee, of course, that is the best option.

Evan Brand: Perfect, perfect. Thanks again and take good care!