New book from NYT bestselling author Lewis Howes is now available!

New book from NYT bestselling author Lewis Howes is now available!


Darin Olien

The Superfood Mindset: Enhance Your Brain, Body, & Life

If you could only eat 5 foods for the rest of your life, what would you eat?

If you could only eat five foods for the rest of your life, what would you eat? 

It’s a hard choice, right? There are so many foods out there that are absolutely delicious. Strawberries, broccoli, yogurts, bread, pasta, cheese, steak, fish, tacos, donuts … the list goes on and on!

But if we’re going to only eat five foods for the rest of our lives, we can’t only think about how they taste. We need to think about the “health factor” as well. Are those five foods going to sustain us throughout our lives? Are they going to give us the nutrition we need to be healthy, strong, and guarded against disease? Or are they going to only provide temporary enjoyment and lead to conditions such as malnutrition, obesity, and even a weakened immune system?

Thankfully, we’re in a position where we don’t have to just choose five foods to eat for the rest of our lives. But at the same time, I think each time we eat something, we should ask ourselves if that food is helping us or hurting us. Of course, we can treat ourselves to sugary foods in moderation, but overall — are the foods that we are consuming improving our lives or destroying our lives?

The food you eat affects more than your appetite. It affects your gut health, your brain performance, your overall mood, your mental health, your emotional wellbeing, and your physical fitness. It also affects the earth you live on!

So, what foods should we be eating? Today, I’m bringing on an expert nutritionist to help us walk through the “superfood mindset” that will help us optimize our health! Please welcome Darin Olien to The School of Greatness!

In this episode, Darin talks about his own top superfoods and the science behind them. We also discuss why water is critical to our health and how to make sure you’re drinking the healthiest water types. Lastly, we also talked about what kinds of food you should and should not be eating in general and so many other fascinating insights that’ll change the way you view nutrition and your health.

So if you’re ready to hear all about the superfood mindset and how to enhance your brain, body, and life with the incredible Darin Olien, let’s get started!

Who Is Darin Olien?

Darin Olien is the co-host with Zac Efron on the widely popular Netflix docu-series called Down to Earth with Zac Efron and host of the #1 Health & Wellness podcast The Darin Olien Show. Darin is also a highly recognized exotic superfoods hunter, supplement formulator, and author of the New York Times bestseller book, SuperLife: The Five Fixes That Will Keep You Healthy, Fit, and Eternally Awesome.

Darin also worked with fitness company Beachbody to formulate one of the top superfoods shakes in the USA — a whole-food supplement called “Shakeology” as well as the plant-based “Ultimate Reset 21-day” detoxification program. Additionally, Darin is one of the founders of Barukas™, a new super nut from the Savannah “Cerrado” of Brazil. The company is committed to supporting this vital biome through sustainable business practices by planting 20 million Baruzeita trees.

Darin is also the Director of Strategic Alliances and the Global Health Ambassador for APPICS, a revolutionary new social media platform monetizing passion and content through cryptocurrency and blockchain, as well as an advisor to Footprint™, which is eliminating single-use plastics with plant-based compostable products that don’t harm you or the planet. In 2021, Darin became Vice President of Health Innovation with Kindhumans.

Darin’s involvement with the health, fitness, and plant-based industry goes on and on. He has done so many great things for this planet and has helped people everywhere revolutionize their diets, fitness, and ultimately, their lives! 

It was an honor to have him on The School of Greatness to discuss how the right foods can improve the quality of our lives.

Five Core Foods You Need in Your Body

Have you ever considered how certain people manage to achieve greatness? Often, we dismiss greatness by saying, “People are born with it.” While certain things, such as talent or genes, are undoubtedly essential, I believe other aspects distinguish regular people from the “great” ones. Your health and diet are some of these factors. 

I also believe that it’s only through a healthy mind and body that we can achieve greatness. Though the path to greatness may not be easy, it is certainly possible to have a healthy body and mind. For Darin, an exotic superfoods hunter, he started our conversation by giving the five core foods that he thinks everyone should try even once in their lifetime to improve their physical health!

#1: Spirulina

Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae that is grown in freshwater, which contains several vitamins that can optimize one’s health. Darin explained that when we eat spirulina in its raw form, we get to take in different vitamins like B Vitamins, including B12, B6, and B9. It also comes with Vitamin E, a high amount of antioxidants, and complete protein.

#2: Moringa

Moringa is an extremely strong and powerful leaf that Darin absolutely loves! He shared that in Africa, moringa means “never die.” If you’re wondering why it’s called that way, Darin explained that moringa leaves contain so much nutritional value, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, Vitamin E, and 36 different antioxidants. The seeds of the moringa plants can even be a source of oil and work as a filter to create clean water.

Darin also explained that you can get the leaves dried and pulverized to be transported. The downside, though, is its quality has degraded once dried. However, it still brings with it a tremendous amount of vitamin and antioxidant capacity, so don’t miss out on this amazing plant! 

#3: Durian

Known for its brain-like appearance and sewer-like smell, Darin suggests that everyone try a durian, a spiky and gnarly fruit usually found in Southeast Asia. Aside from its appearance and smell, the durian can literally kill people when it falls off a tree due to the spikes covering its skin. 

Despite this exciting, dangerous description, Darin still considers it his favorite fruit. He says that this superfood has very high nutritional value, including a vast array of vitamins. No wonder it’s called the King of all Fruits!

#4: Chaga Mushroom

Also known as the King of all Mushrooms, the chaga mushrooms have probably the highest antioxidant in a mushroom in the world. Darin likes it for the following reasons.

“It keeps my immune system cranking and keeps the cortisol levels low. It can also keep my endocrine system balanced. … Chaga mushrooms are everywhere. You can even get the full chunks of chaga, and you can simmer that for hours and drink it as a tea.” –  Darin Olien

Darin even said that you can add cacao with it, and with a bit of sweetener, it’s decadent and delicious.

#5: Schisandra Berry

Another superfood that Darin encourages everyone to try are schisandra berries. These berries grow in some sovereign areas near Tibet and the Eastern region of China. Darin said that you can simply pick the berries and eat them raw. You can even ferment and make a decadent little wine out of it. Aside from these, this kind of berry also comes with many benefits.

“In traditional Chinese medicine, it’s one of the oldest in the record [of] adaptogenic herbs that they use. They use it as kind of a base because it’s so well-balanced and balances out your body over time, both in stress response, cortisol, endocrine, overall strength.” – Darin Olien

These are just some of the superfoods that Darin believes keep him healthy, strong, happy, and whole. Everyone is different, so make sure that you try to discover yours, too!

“Every plant, every fruit, every vegetable has protein in it. Everything!” @DarinOlien  

Why Water Is Essential for Optimizing One’s Health

In times that we feel a little bit overweight or not feeling the way we want to, I think that we should start to assess our health to get on a better path. 

To get everyone started on their health journey, Darin talked about the importance of having a starter kit for health optimization. He emphasized that everyone can start by placing values on sleeping well and turning off electronics. But most importantly is drinking water. Darin explained why:

“First, everyone should know that not all water is created equal. However, water is influenced by everything. So everything it’s around our field, our energetic field, our frequencies, the electronics, the pipes it’s going through, or in nature, affects water.” – Darin Olien

To say that water is alive sounds mindblowing, right? If you’re curious about how this can happen, Darin provided a few science-based explanations.

“There are many studies that show that water is alive, just like us. Researchers have noticed that water isn’t moving in a straight line. It’s flowing and vortexing as a response to the electromagnetic field naturally of the earth. … It also responds to sunlight by allowing itself to undergo electrolysis, which is lading water with minerals. So all of these things are structuring water. That is alive water with high oxygen [and a] high amount of hydrogen and essential minerals.” – Darin Olien

So when we take in water, we should remember that what we are putting inside our bodies isn’t a simple liquid. Darin believes that what we’re taking in is a conductive live force the same with us. Darin added more explanation to this claim:

Dr. Emoto’s work where he took photographs of the geometry of water after putting different thoughts and emotions, like love or anger on a bottle, has been plurally operated by scientists all over the world. Another research was done when two glasses of water are placed next to each other. Scientists found out that the physical DNA transmitted the water’s frequency information next to it by just being in proximity. The water in the second glass was able to pick up the energetic fingerprint of the DNA that was in the one glass.” – Darin Olien

This research blew my mind — but to top everything else, Darin also explained that the discovery of a fourth state of water best describes how water is alive.

“In a study done by Dr. Gerard Pollack, he discovered that when water is placed against a hydrophilic surface, or a surface that’s not accepting water, say a cell wall, a zone is formed. This zone is wherein water pushes the electrons and protons away from each other. This creates polarity, and polarity creates this clean water.” – Darin Olien

So if you’re wondering how this state of “life” that water has can affect our health, Darin provided this explanation:

“Fatigue is a consequence of dehydration, right? This happens because there’s not enough water interacting with cells that create energy.” – Darin Olien

This means that assuming that all this science-based research is valid, it is our activities and lifestyle that lead us to dehydration. We are depriving ourselves of these live forces inherent in water through our preference for sodas and caffeine. Add it up to our lack of fruit and vegetable consumption, and we have fatigue and tiredness as a result!

Interestingly, the water that comes from our water pipes lacks the vitality that these water molecules have. Darin provided some practical advice using the principles of the studies he found.

“The easiest thing for people to do is to put a pinch of unrefined Himalayan salt per glass. This eliminates plastic filters. These microplastics materials are known to cause cancer. You can also etch words to positively affect water composition. Then you can take those glass bottles under the sun. Remember that they should be in glass bottles, though. Now you have water that’s supercharging.” – Darin Olien

Darin even suggested that you can put water in a bottle, swirl it or shake it up to make it alive. You not only get to oxygenate yourself, but you also get tremendous amounts of health benefits!

However, Darin reminded us that there are no magic bullets for health. It is not all about superfoods or water. Holistic health encompasses everything. He explained that it is the small things and positive practices that added up over time. It is setting your mark and trajectory right towards what you want. 

“You don’t have to get overwhelmed with all these superfoods and water molecules and all that. Just adopt what you can and what resonates with you now. As you become healthier, more activated, and more energetic, you’ll naturally go.” – Darin Olien

Today, I want to encourage you to take a moment and write down some small habits you can start forming related to your health. Whether that’s drinking more water, trying some of those superfoods, or exercising more, these habits will hugely impact your health over time. 

Why a Plant-Based Lifestyle Might Be Best for You

Darin has been a strong advocate of a plant-based diet. But with the increasing trend of the only meat lifestyle claiming benefits, such as people getting super shredded and lean, clearing up skin conditions, better focus, and so many more, I was curious what he thinks about the meat lifestyle in general.  

“You can get all of the nutrients from plants, every single one of them. If anyone’s curious, check out that information on T Colin Campbell’s book, The Future of Nutrition. You can also read Mastering Diabetes, which breaks down that the actual culprit for cancer is animal protein. The science is absolutely clear.” – Darin Olien

Aside from meat overconsumption being the cause of cancer, Darin also explained how eating meat negatively impacts your body on a molecular level. 

“Flesh of another being is extremely difficult to break down. Even when you’re dialed in, meaning your body is perfect. It’s got a certain amount of hydrochloric acids and has a certain amount of protease enzymes to break all that down. This results in a huge strain on the body. Not to mention that meat floods the body with the immune response when you’re taking it in because you’ve just taken in something dead inside your body. The body is forced to respond to pathogens.” – Darin Olien

Now, what if you decide to shift from a heavily meat-based diet to a plant-based one? Darin explained that this change should not happen overnight. It also requires other activities to keep your mind and body strong and healthy.

“I slowly got rid of the beef, then the chicken. Slowly, I also cut off on fish. Then I was like, ‘I’m feeling better.’ So I’ve stopped the fish as the last thing, and then I increased my physical activities. I was doing triathlons and duathlons as well as strength training.” – Darin Olien

Once you’ve succeeded in transforming your diet, Darin provided the last few tips to guarantee that you get the most out of what you eat.

“Always eat fruit alone. Avoid eating it with a meal because it takes other digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid. When you have digestive issues, it can also mess it up at different rates.” – Darin Olien

Darin’s advice could be as simple as not putting peanut butter or almond butter on your fruit. Aside from this, he also talked about one powerful tool that many of us seem to take for granted when eating — proper chewing.

“Think about that. We need to do the most primal thing for us, for our breaking down of food. But if we’re not chewing 20 to 30 times per bite, you’re swallowing whole food and letting this very delicate digestive process pull all of the food you’ve taken and break it down. So let’s say you’ve taken in the animal-based protein. You need to break it down, and that’s a lot of energy to do that. … So we really have to take responsibility for the first line of digestive defense by chewing more appropriately and not allowing that process to be just due to chewing through stress.” – Darin Olien

Again, when we eat, we always put the thing that’s the hardest to digest first and follow it up with the veggies, potatoes, or whatever that’s easily digestible. By knowing superfoods and the science of how our body takes in food, it’ll be easy for us to get in the best shape and live our lives to the fullest!

Why You Should Listen To This Darin Olien Podcast Episode Right Now…

Ann Wigmore said, “The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.” And Robert Earl Rich said, “A healthy outside starts from the inside.”

Choosing healthy eating can be difficult. Just like what Darin said, it doesn’t happen overnight, but it can happen through the build-up of the little things you do. In doing these little healthy practices, you don’t just become great but healthy too!

Before I leave, I want to share Darin’s definition of greatness,

 “For me, greatness is listening to my truth and taking action unrelenting on that.” – Darin Olien

Greatness can be helping people, helping the planet, and never stopping. Whether it’s reaching out to people through a podcast or living a plant-based diet to save the lives of animals, Darin said it’s always about continuing. If you continue your pursuit, serendipity, magnetism, strength, and power show up. The universe knows without a doubt that you’re never stopping.

This was such a powerful and mind-blowing interview — I loved having this conversation with Darin. Not only are his tips practical, the science behind his advice is simply fascinating!

If you love to hear more about these research-based claims on finding the right food to eat or just trying to get fit and happy, you can show Darin some support by getting a copy of his book, SuperLife: The 5 Simple Fixes That Will Make You Healthy, Fit, and Eternally AwesomeYou can also check out his website and follow him on Instagram.

Also, if you enjoyed this interview, please share this episode over on your Instagram stories. Don’t forget to tag Darin, @darinolien, and me, @lewishowes, with your key takeaways. Lastly, don’t forget to subscribe to The School of Greatness over on the Apple Podcasts —leave us a rating so we can reach more people like you! 

But before you click over to any of those other sites, make sure to listen to the full episode. If you believe that eating the right food and following a healthy diet is the secret to improving your mind, body, and life, you won’t want to miss this interview with Darin Olien!

To Greatness,

Lewis Howes - Signature

Some Questions I Ask:

  • If you were stranded on an island and could only eat 5 foods for the rest of your life what would they be?
  • What would be a starter kit to start optimizing our health?
  • Should we stop mixing the different foods we eat?
  • How should we separate our foods before eating?

In this episode, you will learn:

  • Why water is incredibly important to our health.
  • The starter kit for optimizing out health.
  • How to make your water “more alive.”
  • The correct way to separate your foods before eating.
  • And so many other fascinating insights about nutrition and health!
  • Plus much more…
Connect with
Darin Olien

Transcript of this Episode

Music Credits:

Music Credit:

Kaibu by Killercats

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