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Feb. 2, 2022

#55 Dr. Nicole Prause- Trauma, Healing, and Sexual Reframing

Candice welcomes Dr. Nicole Prause, a neuroscientist researching human sexual behavior, addiction, and the physiology of sexual response. We talk all things sex: porn, “addiction”, women who watch porn, and how sex and porn can benefit people in more ways than we can imagine.

Sex & Porn Addiction

There’s no doubt that some people are more addicted to sex and porn than others, but the question as a clinician is to ask: “How do I treat this?”. One model could be addiction and some of the things that are required to call some things as an addiction would be developing tolerance around the stimulus or behavior, Curie activity, having negative consequences as a result of the behavior. Each of these will be undergone and have disproven some aspects of them in science, called falsification. An addiction has to fulfill all criteria otherwise it’s not an addiction. Having shame because of conservative upbringings, having a high sex drive and not being able to complete everyday tasks and relationships, leading up to impulsive and compulsive disorders are not the same as addiction. In the field of science, no scientist has labelled porn as addictive and most of this stigma is around public perception.

Women Who Watch Porn 

Women are the biggest spenders in OnlyFans and women who watch porn are seen to have positive effects such as improved sexual satisfaction, increased orgasm consistency, and higher relationship satisfaction. The big gender difference is that in sex clinics, the most common problem women report is low desire which has been going on for 40 years and watching pornography could be one of the ways to spark drive. 

Sex Research on Trauma Healing and Sexual Reframing

PTSD is affective dampening, which is when a person shuts their emotions off because of the fear that their traumatic experience will happen again. Through orgasm meditation, the idea is if there’s a way to get victims to have intense emotional experiences that are safe where they can start to experience feelings of intensity again in a way that isn’t frightening so they can do exposures. This allows them to feel high intensity but a positive, pleasurable thing which can make their affective range broaden out again. CPT is one of the most common form of therapies for PTSD victims

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0 (0s): Someone had the foresight to work on an intervention that it's a thing called acceptance and commitment therapy or act it's used for a lot of different things. It's used to help with depression in one format, you adjust it, do it slightly differently. They use it for generalized anxiety disorder and someone a while back said, you know what? I bet this might work for pornography problems because the kind of act approach doesn't say, Hey, you need to stop doing what you're doing. It's like, let's talk about what your goals are. You know, where would you like to be? What do you think people would be saying at your funeral? If they were saying what you would hope, you know, the experience they've had with you was like, what about your parents? If they're around, what about your brothers, sisters, if they're around. 0 (40s): And so through the series of exercises, you kind of talk about what are your personal values and how does Porn fit into those or fail to fit into those. So how might you use the integrated in your life in a way that feels syntonic with your value? 1 (57s): Hello, everybody, you're listening to Chatting with Candice, I'm your host, Candice Horbacz. Before we jump into this week's episode, I wanted to do a couple of shout outs. I wanted to say thank you to chase to Matt and to Mike, thank you so much for the cups of coffee. I couldn't do this without you guys and all of your support. So it really means the world to me. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. And let's hop into the episode. So this week we have Dr. Nicole, Prowsey joining the podcast. Dr. Nicole is a sexual psycho physiologist, but I'm going to let her explain her credentials because she's going to do it a lot better than I am. So buckle up, get ready for this spicy, but research based conversation. 1 (1m 42s): I hope that you like it. And if you do, I would really, really appreciate a five star review and maybe sharing a buddy. So let's hop in. Hello, everybody. I am so excited for today's guest. I haven't really touched on the porn topic on this podcast cast or Sex Research in a while. So I'm really excited to have a professional, Dr. Nicole, is it prophecy or Prouse browsey Prowsey okay. Thank you. I didn't want to like miss pronounced throughout the episode, if you could really quick give the listeners just like a brief background on the work that you're doing in your professional credentials, if you will. 0 (2m 22s): Sure. So I have a PhD in clinical science, which is basically testing, developing treatments, and I concentrate in neuroscience and statistics as a part of that and content area wise, focus on sexual physiology and things around that, which is I think how I ended up here. So I'm currently a statistician at UCLA, although I'm not speaking on their behalf today. So I do a lot of stats and development kinds of things around areas of sexuality and physiology. 1 (2m 54s): Yeah. So one of the reasons that I was really excited to have you here is I feel like when we talk about anything, that's in regard to sexuality porn, anything physical like that, all those conversations are so emotionally charged, and it's really hard for people to kind of separate themselves out from that, whether it's religious based morality based, it's just this feeling that they have, that it's wrong. We can't have an open and honest conversation about what's actually happening. And I feel like when that's the case, it's impossible to have any progress whatsoever. So as Mr. Bench para would say, facts don't care about your feelings. I think that has to apply across the board, right? So you have to be able to detach yourself from whatever bias you might be holding and be able to look at some of the evidence. 1 (3m 40s): And I think a lot of the work that you tweet about and that you're working on is really exciting. And I think it can change a lot of the ways that we look at our relationship with sexuality in general, when I've had a previous Sex researcher on, she was explaining that even when you go in as a doctor, it's very stigmatized. Like people are like, oh, are you sure you want to go into that field? And I'm curious if you've had that experience and then how that affects funding. 0 (4m 8s): Sure. I often have students ask about coming into this space and I always tell them, do not hold that doesn't mean don't do sexuality, but you need to take a different background because the field is highly stigmatized. I can't tell you the number of times people have tried to have me fired, you know, chased out threatened. It's a terrible space to be in, especially if you're in the U S so I would answer a little differently if you're based out of the Netherlands, there are a lot more friendly there. A lot of my colleagues with moved to Canada because Justin Trudeau is a lot friendlier there just for some context, the biggest grants in the U S come from the national institutes of health. 0 (4m 48s): And so a lot of us are trying to get those all the time. That's how we want to fund our work. If we can. They're often generous grants. And in the history of NIH, five grants have been brought before Congress for defunding all five are sexuality grants and one actually lost its funding. So that's just unheard of. It's very rare and it's always been attacking sex researchers. So if that gives you some idea, you know, this is the representative funding body, and we barely have access to it. And if we do there's a high likelihood will be the end of protest from Congress. So I've sparred with some Congress, people to, it's just a spot that it doesn't matter kind of how basic the research is that you're doing. 0 (5m 31s): The, one of the focuses of the national Institute of health is they want to relieve a disease burden. And because of that, the Sex Research that is funded is almost exclusively around sex negativity. So how do you avoid getting HIV? How do you, you negotiate consent with a partner, so you don't get syphilis, you know, like, which are all important things to study that there is zero on pleasure, positivity, health benefits. I have not heard one project ever be funded that has that kind of a focus. And it makes some sense, right? You want your tax dollars going to something that's going to alleviate suffering, but it would expense. 1 (6m 12s): Yeah. And it's also a problems, problems, focused funding. It seems versus like solution because yeah, you can focus on people and avoiding, avoiding getting sick and contracting these diseases. We can also focus on a lot of the mental health benefits that do come from sexuality, which we'll definitely get into when it comes to funding though. Are there like, is there a private sector for that or is it just so small that it, it's not really making a dent? 0 (6m 38s): There are. So I've mainly been funded through private foundations. So the alcoholic beverage medical research foundation, or the MRF funded my early work, that was like my first faculty year. And I've worked with the Institute of orgasmic meditation, which has interested in exploring the potential health benefits of orgasm meditation, which I knew nothing about five years ago. Now we have a grant from the national organization of rare diseases and disorders, excuse me, to study something called post orgasmic illness syndrome. So these tend to be much smaller in scale, but they they're a way to have funding to do your work. There are scarce, and we just have to be even more competitive to find and get those 1 (7m 20s): . Do you think that with the progress that we see with psychedelics and the research that's happening with Johns Hopkins, that that might be like maybe a hint at progress with sex or is, are psychedelics still more acceptable in today's climate than, than Sex Research? 0 (7m 39s): That's an interesting question. I've seen some people in sex, like try and combine these and start talking about the, that kind of experience around altered sexual states and always say, oh, no, please do like, we've got enough problems. We might not be great, but we don't want their stigma too. Like we got better now. So I do think there's on the one hand, like some opportunity for convergence, there were some, some of these altered states might have comparable effects, but their field is huge, right? Like why I worked in alcohol addiction to some extent substance use and they have much bigger funding. So they have a nice broad base of just, what does cocaine do? 0 (8m 21s): What does LSD do? What is most, they've done tons of animal studies on these things. They generalize them to humans. These are pretty well known and characterized. It would be hard for us to do that in sex. I think because we just don't have that maturity of science because we're a tiny field then we're, we're not well-funded so it's, if we get there, I think it's going to be a long road. Not like being able to ride right on the coattails. 1 (8m 46s): Well, so I guess getting in to some of the research and I guess some of the facts, I think we see a lot of the conversation right now that is negative when it comes to pornography and specifically porn addiction on we'll use air quotes for that and sex OCDish addiction. And I know that I don't know how divided it is, but I know that there are people that say that it is an actual addiction. And then other people that say, no, it's more of a bad habit that someone's formed. I've heard people say that it's like procrastination or a compulsion. So I guess when it comes to defining an addiction, what's, what's the metrics for that. And then does porn and sex addiction fit that definition? 0 (9m 29s): That's exactly the way I wish people would ask about it, because I think the assumption frequently is it's either addiction or it's nothing, you know? So if you will deny that it's an addiction, you're denying people's experience and saying no one has problems with it. And of course that's never the claim that we've made. So there's no doubt that some people use it more than is useful in their life, you know, or that it causes conflict with their partner because they don't agree on their values around it. That happens a hundred percent. So the question is, as a clinician, you know, this is my job as a clinical scientist is like, How do I treat this? Yeah. If someone says, I'm upset about my porn viewing. And so One model could be addiction. And some of the things that are required to call some things as an addiction would be developing tolerance around the stimulus or behavior, something called Curie activity, having negative consequences as a result of the behavior. 0 (10m 23s): There are other things as well, but those are kind of three key ones. And so each of those we've kind of gone through and disproven various aspects of them. And science is something we called falsification. So that is like, it's not some people think science is a Seesaw where it's like, the more evidence you get, this one gets more and more weight until one is clearly heavier than the other. That's not it at all, actually. So it's like, if you say like this thing's in addiction, it has to meet all of the criteria. If it feels in one, then it's not an addiction. It might be some that it's not an addiction. And so I think a lot of people don't know that like science kind of basic science process. And so we say like, there are so many falsifications at this point, like we only really needed one. 0 (11m 6s): And addiction is a really high bar, you know, there of all the things that could be going on, it could be like Having shame due to a conservative upbringing and values could be, you just have a high sex drive. And so you're doing a lot of things sexually that are just in, out of balance with the things you need to accomplish in your life, work relationship, family related, whatever those may be. That's more kind of the bad habit thing. I think you were alluding to all the way up to impulsivity disorders, compulsivity disorders. And those are different. They're not the same as addiction, but I get like the public doesn't have that kind of broad thing. Like these are different models, you know, our ways of understanding why people are having this trouble. 0 (11m 48s): So, absolutely. I think that I don't know of any scientists currently that talk about porn is addictive to me. That's all coming from public, just activists, honestly, these days. So we don't have any representation of porn in either the American diagnostic manual, which is the diagnostic and statistical manual or in the international that's international classification of disorders. Both excluded porn entirely. There's no appearance of it, neither. So I think it's been pretty soundly rejected, scientifically speaking. But I get like, we, this is a constant question because there are groups who have decided this is how they make their money, or this is what they're going to advocate for. 0 (12m 29s): And so as scientists, we're kind of in that COVID-19 scientists thing of like having to fight against a lot of activism, they were like, you know, we want to be helpful, but you know, at some point it's like the evidence is there for some of this to, to exclude some things and make some decisions. I think. 1 (12m 48s): Yeah. I think it's really interesting because everyone that I've talked to, that's a professional agrees with exactly what you said and it, you know, it does have negative consequences for some people in some areas, but that doesn't necessarily make an, An addiction. And I think that the language around that to me seems really intentional from the people that are really stuck on it. So when you see these, you know, politicians or these activist groups that are using it, it's because they don't want you to focus over here. They want you to focus on porn and like their, their goal is to shut porn down entirely. And they don't want to say that outright. So then they say, well, it's, it's causing harm to all of these men and these young boys. 1 (13m 28s): And then I think for men and you know, maybe I'm speaking out of turn, but I think for men that are really stuck on that, it's an accountability issue. So rather than saying, it is something that I can fix, which I think is more empowering, right? Like you have these resources, you can find a professional and seek help and fix this behavior. That's affecting your, your life in some negative way. You choose to say that it's a disease because to me that says, you don't want to fix it. So it's this thing that's out of my hands. And, you know, it's, it's, it's a, it's a disease. I can't fix it and you're gonna have to deal with it. And it's the thing that I'm suffering from. So I think we're doing a huge disservice to people that actually need help in some area and specifically when it comes to the shame. 1 (14m 9s): So what I love about the work that you're doing is you kind of incorporate the psychology as well as the physiology with your work. So when it comes to people that suffer from a lot of shame, cause I've heard you on other podcasts, say that when someone thinks that they have a, like a Porn problem that you find that they're often not really watching more than an average consumer, but it's, it's usually because of their upbringing. So they have this shame and this skill with the content that they're watching is there. I know this is going to be like, so like 10,000 foot level, but is there a way that you kind of tackle the shame? Like how, how do you get rid of something that is so deeply built into our foundation? 1 (14m 49s): You 0 (14m 49s): Know, there's a, it's actually not as bad as it may sound because someone had the foresight to work on an intervention that it's a thing called acceptance and commitment therapy or act it's used for a lot of different things. It's used to help with depression in one format, you adjust it, do it slightly differently. They use it for generalized anxiety disorder and someone a while back said, you know what? I bet this might work for pornography problems because the kind of act approach doesn't say, Hey, you need to stop doing what you're doing. It's like, let's talk about what your goals are. You know, where would you like to be when, when you die? You know, one of the exercises is like, what do you think people would be saying at your funeral? If they were saying what you would hope, you know, the experience they've had with you was like, what about your parents? 0 (15m 33s): If they're around, what about your brothers, sisters, if they're around. And so through the series of exercises, you kind of talk about what are your personal values and how does Porn fit into those or fail to fit into those. So how might you be integrated in your life in a way that feels syntonic with your values? You know, that's consistent with what you're saying is important to you. And for a lot of people that's not quitting. That's just, you know, I know that I'm avoiding my wife because I come home and I masturbate every day after work. When I do it for two hours, I also don't have to participate in childcare, like, okay. So not had a point issue, clearly an issue though. 0 (16m 13s): And that's something the act approach helps navigate. And so we actually have this great research, supported therapy to help people who are having poor and problems. And it's not an abstinence approach, you know, it's this act approach. And it's so widely tested. We need to get more data on it in this particular group. But I loved the study. They did. I was like, that makes so much sense to me, you know, to really just talk to people about kind of their shame around that. And like, okay. So when you use it, you have shame. Is it always shameful? Are there times when you feel justified, when it feels okay, what's different about those times and helping people just think through that process of like, what is it about my use that is causing me to get so upset? 1 (16m 56s): Yeah. It's, it's really interesting because finding the root of that can also be really difficult for a lot of people and maybe something that they don't want to unpack. And when someone asked me this question recently, I was like, well, you just have to kind of ask yourself, what do you want your relationship to be with sexuality? Like, do you feel good that you feel dirty when you engage with it right. With a consenting adult like that? To me, that's not healthy. That doesn't sound pleasant and sex can be such a great experience. So it's about like, what do you want? And then trying to navigate like the, the approaches to get there. 0 (17m 29s): Yeah. And I, I would love if more people became aware that there already is this supported treatment. A lot of therapists are trained in act, especially a younger folks coming out. It's a very common mode of treatment. So I think it's pretty accessible if you're, you know, we're supposed to have mental health parody and healthcare now. So if you can get access, so that's a concern you have. I think there's every reason to think you can feel a lot better, not going through these weird, you know, abstinence reboot, shame, my sexuality and to oblivion and make things worse approaches. 1 (18m 2s): Well, that's another thing we see too, right. Which is like the no-fat movement and this, this narrative that masturbating and I guess specifically to porn, which I'm, I would like to know if there's a difference. If you masturbate just with, you know, your, your thoughts and your imagination versus watching content. I can't imagine it's much different physiologically speaking, but specifically if you masturbate to watching porn, that it has a negative consequence on your testosterone. So is that true or is that false? Can you help debunk this, this mystery for us? 0 (18m 36s): Yeah. It's funny. It's the opposite. And it's very well replicated that it's the opposite. So the more you masturbate, the more testosterone you have, and this is such a common myth, we cannot bust it. Don't know what's happening. It feels very COVID-19 conspiracy to me. So yeah, it's, it's clearly not the case that that's what's happening. And you know, when people get linked into those, you were doing some research right now, actually on those interventions, because what's really unique about the way they're approaching it is compared to any other intervention you might get like the act or maybe cognitive behavioral therapy. I don't know if people try that they have this relapse, right? 0 (19m 16s): So the event it's really unique and their, their treatments. And they describe them as treatments are that you can relapse by doing something bad. And so one of the things we're looking at is what is the response that people have for instance, when they have pre-existing depression problems to have a relapse. And I can't share the data yet because they're not published, but it looks really, really bad. And it's not at all surprising in a way that, you know, I think we, we have to get that information out that these things may be causing harm to the public and they need to, not just, it's often presented, I think is like, oh, you could try this. You could try that. But that's our job. 0 (19m 56s): You know, that's clinical scientist job is to test treatments and not only find the things that work or develop new things that work, but also say, this one's bad. You need to avoid this one. It's going to make you worse. And I think that's where our data seem to be starting to point us, you know, is that they're really a, we call attra genic. That is they make the condition worse rather than better. So I, I look forward to sharing those in more detail when we have our final sample, but there are many myths associated with it, including that changes in testosterone issue. That rectal dysfunction thing has been disproven. I think it's 52 studies now, or something like that that have shown like it's either no effect or a positive impact in general. 0 (20m 37s): And with female functioning, it's definitely a positive impact. Like that's so well, we'll replicate it in women, but you know, we pretend women don't watch porn cause that's dirty. 1 (20m 47s): No, I think that's crazy too. I'm like the numbers are there when it comes to only fans, women spend the most amount of money. I think there's more male, but they're the big spenders. Yeah. And I think a lot of it too is women tend to be a little bit more ethical with their porn consumption. So they like paying. So they know that it's benefiting the performer, the sex worker versus men who just kind of like are there to watch and enjoy. So maybe that's part of it, but yeah, they're the biggest spenders on only fans. 0 (21m 15s): Yeah. It is funny. I think that whole group just kind of ignores like what, you know, whatever negative effects are always claimed in men. I hardly ever see them even claimed in women. And that's like, if you look at the female data, it's almost all positive effects. It's like improved sexual satisfaction, increased orgasm, consistency, higher relationship satisfaction. It's like, okay. Wow. Yeah. So I just think like, this is so funny in that if you want to talk about negative effects, you have to ignore women as the data are very strongly in the opposite direction for, for women. And obviously not every single study science is rarely like that, that clean cut, unfortunately for us. But, but generally speaking it's like the effects are pretty consistently positive for women. 1 (21m 59s): That's so interesting too, because a lot of the narrative around women is that like porn is ruining relationships and Porn will destroy your marriage. And porn is cheating, which I don't agree with any of that. I think that there's a lot of what's happening right in the porn is just one of those little flags that you're focusing on. And you're not actually focusing on the root problem, like when we were talking earlier and you said, you know, the skies mashed reading for two hours cause he wants to avoid childcare and he doesn't want to see his wife. Like those are really the issues to tackle, not the pornography, but a lot of questions that I get are like, how do you get a woman? That's how do you get her comfortable with the idea of exploring that part of her sexuality when it comes to watching content? So when these women signed up for this study, is that maybe just the type of woman, like maybe she's just a little bit sexually and more sexually adventurous than the norm, or is there a bell curve to that? 0 (22m 51s): We definitely have to worry more about volunteer bias with lab studies. So women that come in when we actually measure their physiology, absolutely. This is someone who's comfortable trusting me to use. You know, you can use this intra-vaginal device, it's going to be safe. I'm not going to look, you know, you have to trust that all of those things are true, which obviously like we're federally regulated. Like I must be true. I would not have a job, but it's the bias in those surveys, I think as much less because they're sampling women who also don't view at all, you know, so they're, they're getting those more conservative women and comparing them to women. Who've more controlling for the potential differences there. 0 (23m 32s): So I think the volunteer bias is more of a concern in some of the lab work. Well, you know, we have to be where those wouldn't tend to be more kind of excitement seeking pleasure seeking have a higher sex drive. But my guess is like the, I think The big gender difference there is on, in general, if you look at sex clinics, it's still by far the most common problem. Women report is low desire. Like that's been the case for like 40 years, you know, that's the issue. And so if you're someone who's open to looking at pornography and that's value consistent for you, that's a way to spark drive, you know, 1 (24m 11s): Wild. 0 (24m 12s): Yeah. I just think like that, you know, I haven't seen a study that does that very cleanly to show that that's what's happening, but that's my guess is it's a lot of these, the women, if, if the most common problem is low drive and you're open to doing this thing that improves drive pretty consistently, you know, when we test for it, then that makes sense. You know, that, that might improve the most common issue. A lot of women struggle with. 1 (24m 35s): Yeah. And see, to me that seems like that research would be so valuable, but then it makes you think about, you know, people's bottom line, which is I heard people were trying, they were trying to develop a Viagra for women and then that, you know, tanked. So if you can say, well, Hey, if you watch this thing and it only costs you $9 a month and it's going to a private company and it fixed all of it, fixes all your problems and we can't make a pill for you. So I see the conflict there, but it's just seems like if we can look at the benefits and like actual mental health and physical benefits that sexuality can provide doesn't that seem like such a better alternative than taking a pill to me. Like it's a no brainer. Yeah. 0 (25m 14s): Yeah. This is a tough one. So even in my field, I find other sex researchers tend to argue for the importance of pleasure. So they're saying like, it's terrible that we don't pay attention to women's pleasure. And they're totally right. We should. But I always like to hold poor Mike Pence. I don't know Mr. Pence, the holding night, as an example, I said that argument is never going to convince Mike Pence. He doesn't care. He doesn't care about women's pleasure. You can't make him. What you might make him care about is when you have an orgasm, you get this bolus of vasopressin, which is a stimulant. So surprise, surprise. A lot of people fall asleep very easily after they have it. We think that's why that seems to be why and animal models. 0 (25m 57s): And so what if we could get a bunch of people off sleep aids? So we pill taking around that. If we knew more about like, what is the trajectory you need to be in bed, do you have to like, do you have to be aroused for some period before you climb? Can you just do it real quick? Like what affects the vasopressin dose? And I would so much rather know about that. You know, how do we use this in a way to improve sex? And so I wish I, excuse me, improve general health. So I wish my field would kind of make that pivot. That's rather than continuing to try and like beat our head against the brick wall and say, you should care. These people are not going to be convinced by that argument. And I think we need to use these exact arguments that is, if you let us study this, you know, there's gold in there. 0 (26m 39s): So, you know, some of what we've looked at is doing of this orgasm meditation work. So orgasm meditation, for those who don't know, like I didn't, it was basically a 15 minute annual genital stroking practice. So one person has the role of stroker and that's all they do. Another person just receives and that's all they do. And the person is stroking beside the clitoris. So just beside the clitoral shaft really, really, really slow basically for 15 minutes. And the only goal is just to feel so they don't actually typically have a climax. So we were looking at health benefits around that practice. And so one of the things we're seeing is like improved connection between the two people. 0 (27m 22s): And so that happened to be our first paper. And I said, this is so funny. Cause I get that. Most people are like, no kidding. I think he's stroke each other's genitals for 15 minutes. You feel, feel closer to the person. But what was unique in that is about half our sample. They weren't romantic partners, they just did this thing together. And so for all those folks that are saying like, well, you can't use sex is something to prescribe or something. People practice. Cause some people don't have partners and we don't want them having sex with randos because that's bad. That's promiscuous. And we still see that word promiscuous in our science literature sometimes. Well now we have data that there's a health benefit and that it's the same or enhanced for people doing it with non stable partners. 0 (28m 9s): So let's get rid of that myth, you know, what's next, you know, what else do we need to show to show that you can use sexual stimulation to improve health? 1 (28m 18s): Yeah. And, and to me, so it would seem that if you were to figure, if someone had maybe like anxiety or depression and obviously like, you know, there's a lot of work that needs to be done, but anxiety, depression, even possibly like pain man management, I've seen, you know, with orgasm, you know, that helps it's what oxytocin and it supposed to be greater than a pill that you can take or am I on the right on the right 0 (28m 47s): Path opioids? I would say. 1 (28m 50s): Okay. Yeah. So you have all these benefits that are natural, right? It's your, your body's naturally producing these, these chemicals. It's it's odd when you see the counter-argument that says, well, you shouldn't be using these things as a coping mechanism that makes you weak. That makes you there's something deranged about you. Like you're perverted, whatever it is like that from the other side. And it's like, well, I don't understand the it's. It's all natural. So why do you think that there's that, that narrative, that it's a negative coping mechanism. 0 (29m 21s): That's so funny. I literally just wrote an introduction talking about the kind of health benefits of sex and what the resistance is. So near and dear to my heart, this topic, I, the resistance I think is this is a place where we still have this idea, even though in general, we've gotten away from sex must be reproductive. You know, I think we've gotten enough work that we say, okay, all right. Sex can also be for pleasure. Fine. You know, like even the religious groups are like, yeah, you should have a, you know, happy wife, happy life, maybe kind of approach. Some are getting a little more friendly to like partners should have a good pleasurable sex life, not just for procreation. 0 (30m 3s): That's awesome. But I think we're not there yet. In respect to the health benefits, we'll still kind of have this idea of like, you can't use sex in that way. And they'll describe it like that. You know, it's like this idea that if you use sex to improve mood, that that's bad. Right. And I think that's hysterical. Like we did a study of, we induced negative mood, either sad mood or anxious mood using film inductions. This is a really common way of doing this in the lab. You show people like Sophie's choice where she's like having to decide which of her children she's going to send to the Nazis. I mean, just really horrible. 0 (30m 43s): This is, you know, how it's, how we do these things in the lab. So you induce a sad mood and then you expose people or show them like a pornographic film and look at how their mood shifts. And of course it improves, you know, like it just does. And you ask people directly, how often do you use sexuality or sexual response and arousal to alter your responsiveness overwhelmingly the majority of people report doing that. So, I mean, you're, you're pathologizing most people, if you take that stance. And so part of my argument has been, we need to, I see it, you know, it's still all in the literature is like, oh, you shouldn't use sex in this way. 0 (31m 25s): And I don't see the why either, you know, I'm not getting the why, tell me why you can't use it to improve mood. And so I can imagine usually people respond to that with specific cases. So they'll say I knew a guy. I dated somebody once you will always find exceptions to the rule, okay, this is, this is why science is not anecdotes. So if it happens here or there, I don't doubt that that happens, but we're looking for trends. You know, science looks for what happens on average or to most people, what can we expect? And so I think overwhelmingly those effects seem to be positive. You know, that is people can use sexuality to enhance their health in a way that is stable. 0 (32m 8s): That doesn't cause a backlash where they then have really low mood after the fact. But we need to characterize that better. So I would love to know more about like how long does that elevated mood last? Does it make you more resilient over time? Can you use it in like a regularized way to actually address depression? You know, if we're causing these systems to alter and activating that reward system in a really intense way, you know, if you were doing that every day, could you not take an antidepressant pill? Is that changing? Whether it's serotonergic or dopaminergic kind of responsiveness, you know, is there something there that we could use to substitute? 0 (32m 51s): This is a long way off to be fair. I don't want people to stop taking meds because, but those are the kinds of places I want to go with these data. You know, I was like, let's, let's look, let's stop saying you can't look cause it's bad. Cause I don't hear the reason it's bad. 1 (33m 6s): Right. And there's so many negative side effects to a lot of those pills that people have to endure because not taking them is worse. So if you had something that didn't have these negative side effects, that was all natural. It seems like a no brainer. I was reading this article a while back. And it was saying that like, if your partner finishes in you like as, you know, as a woman that there's something in the semen that actually works kind of like an antidepressant. And I was like, whoa, that is so crazy. That that was one of the most wild things I'd ever read. 0 (33m 36s): So this, I have to do a little myth busting, sorry. You're totally right. That is what the study said and healed me about. It was so just thinking like, you don't need a degree to figure this out. People stop using condoms with someone, 1 (33m 53s): When do they usually committed relationship? Yeah. 0 (33m 56s): Okay. So they didn't ask people to stop or start using condoms. They looked at the mental health of people who are already not using condoms. So what they were actually doing is not comparing condom use and non condom use. They're comparing people who are in a stable, romantic relationship. They trust their partner enough to not use a condom versus people. Okay. 1 (34m 16s): Okay. So it's not really 0 (34m 18s): So much, not that there couldn't be something in there and you know, maybe I'm always open to new data, but that study, I just want to ring their neck. I was like, oh 1 (34m 28s): No, I was gonna say that sounds so magical and just insane that you're, that, that your body's going to be designed that way. So, oh man. 0 (34m 37s): I know. I maybe, maybe, but I think there's a much more parsimonious explanation. It's like, 1 (34m 44s): Is there yeah. Okay. All right. Well scratch that then everybody like that's really cool. I wanted to ask, have you heard this new term that's going around? It's called sexual autism? 0 (34m 58s): No, 1 (34m 59s): No. So I heard out a couple of podcasts and I had sent it to one of my girlfriends who is also a Sex Research researcher. And she was like, what are they talking about? So the theory is that if you are watching too much content online, that you can develop what they're coining is sexual autism. So it's like not being able to recognize your partner's cues, like kind of having like that low, like emotional intelligence and like social reading, nonverbal communication, all of that thing, all of that. And then I stumbled upon this other study and it was saying that people that just consume too much technology in general show those signs. 1 (35m 41s): So it was like, well, it seems like we're kind of cherry picking information there. And then you're trying to create this almost diagnosable term out of thin air to scare men specifically to not watch pornography and to somehow still continue like this doomsday approach. So I was interested if you heard it. Cause I saw it circulating a few times. 0 (36m 3s): Yeah. Well obviously I haven't heard of it before. So in fairness, I haven't checked my Google scholar to see if there's new breaking science I've missed. That seems very unlikely. And I would say it's for the same reasons that I don't think erectile functioning is related to porn viewing. That is the, you know, people often say, oh, you wired to the porn in a way that sounds similar to what you're describing, that the stimulus is different. So there are many, many differences between viewing pornography and masturbating to it versus having sex with a partner, make it not generalizable. So in, when we talk about generalizability, if you had an old intro psych class, you know, this is where, you know, you condition and say, you know, every time your partner comes home, you get to have dinner and you have, you're trying to wait until they get home. 0 (36m 57s): So you can have dinner together or something. And so when they walk in the door, you start immediately getting hungry. Cause you know, your time to eat. So that's a kind of a conditioned response. And then it becomes, you hear the garage door and then you're like, oh, they're home. I'm going to get to eat soon. And so you start getting hungry just from garage door opening and now maybe a generalize you're at work and you hear a garage door open and you suddenly notice yourself getting hungry. Like what the, okay, so that's generalizing beyond the original stimulus. And so people are saying that happens with porn and sex. That is something about you're masturbating to that is conditioning your responses, but they're very, very different. So for one interacting with a partner is much more intense than interacting with porn. 0 (37m 40s): I know people claim that it's not, there's no data to support those claims. I, as far as I know, I have the only data in there and I will tell you, partnered interactions are stronger stimulate always consistently than viewing pornography. So the intensity argument definitely doesn't hold there also like qualitative differences. So like there are these things in our hairy skin that are called CF fibers. They're only active when they're stroked at a particular frequency by another human. So those are not activated during porn viewing. And that's just one example of something where, you know, as soon as I go to a partner in context, I'm getting a stimulus that can't possibly be associated with my porn viewing. 0 (38m 21s): So, you know, the argument that somehow that's going to get overrun and none of your CF friends are going to work anymore because why I've never heard an explanation for that. And so there's just a lot of things like that. That it's the two things. There's no reason to think they would generalize. They're just two different stimulus. And that reminds me of your question before you say like, is the orgasm different from here? So an orgasm is a reflex. So that is something that once the cascade has started, you know, you can't really stop. It's kind of like a sneeze in that way. One, so orgasms may vary in terms of their intensity, but they're highly stereotyped. So they really don't vary in terms of if you had it in response to porn or response to fantasy or with a partner. 0 (39m 9s): But then people always say well, but they feel so different. And I felt like this was more in my vagina. This is more my clear, we are very well aware. You know, if we ask this sensations, feel like they're coming from different places, but the physiology is the same across. So for example, when I look at contractions, I can't tell the difference. If I'm measuring a male or a female, they're just highly stereotyped and very similar across, 1 (39m 32s): Oh, that's so interesting. Yeah. I wouldn't know. I would have expected it to be different. And then if the intensity is that much more with a partner, then you would assume that that would be more addictive than a screen. 0 (39m 44s): Yeah. So, but that's not what they want to promote. So I think that's a inconvenient data. 1 (39m 52s): So I wanted to get into, I guess, some of the healing and pleasure aspects of the research. So the way I found you, I was actually at a Jamie wheel event and he mentioned like, I think he mentioned you in his book as well. So the recapture, the rapture book, and he was specifically mentioning some of the benefits of masturbation of partner work and kind of saying that there is some research that is suggesting that you can kind of re you can kind of achieve certain transcendental moments through orgasm as you would with psychedelics. And to me, it was like, well, whoa, if we're doing all this research on psychedelics to obtain like those altered states, then why not, you know, focus something that was a little less intense and a little less scary than having to take a substance. 1 (40m 42s): So there's probably a bunch of people that are a little bit like nervous or skeptical, and they don't want to take anything. Maybe they never have, or maybe they have an addiction issue, whatever, the reason there's a great alternative for those people, if we just had some of the data. So it was curious, I guess, about that work. 0 (41m 1s): Yeah. We are definitely looking at like what the brain states are in the course of sexual response. And one of the biggest challenges is sexual psycho-physiology is already a tiny field. There are not a lot of us and those of us who study it almost all use stimulii that are three minutes, maybe five minutes at the long side. So we're usually showing pornographic films to produce a sexual response that we can study the labs that actually follow people all the way through to climax. There are currently three, mine is one. So this is why science is so slow. 0 (41m 41s): We're tiny. And one of them has been stopped cause that faculty members now has a teaching role. And the other one, I believe those folks have left the institution they were at. So I don't even know if the other two are collecting data right now. And so when we try and think about like, what might be unique about brain states in sexual arousal that we can capture or use in some way it's sparse to be fair. So what we have found that we think is unique and might speak to that is the, so we're not totally sure what triggers climax, you know, like how does that actually happen? What is that? One of the popular theories is that there's a lot of synchronous firing that happens in the brain at climax, which if you've ever heard of synchronous iron in the brain before, it's probably in the context of a seizure. 0 (42m 32s): So we call the signal activity that is unsafe. So you lose control of your body. You can fall, you can hit your head. There are lots of reasons not to like seizures. And so we say, okay, well, if, if orgasm is doing something like that, and there's a lot of synchronous firing, then we backtrack and look at what was the brain state kind of leading up to that, you know, how do we get to the point where the brain can do that or engage in that process? And so far with this really short window, we had been seeing a lot of evidence of what we call alpha suppression. So that is a brainwave that goes down a lot, showing that someone is really engaged, focused, and effortfully trying to do something. 0 (43m 14s): So that makes sense, right? Like you're trying to get into the moment. You're like, yeah, let me think, okay, what fantasy? You know, or, oh, this person's really cute. Oh, I really love this person, whatever that is, you know, to kind of focus on those sensations, those good feelings, things that promote sexual Wiles up for us. But what we found in the series of studies was we would get people aroused. And then we'd say at some point, okay, try to have a climax if you can. You know, and then their only job is just to press the big red button beside their chair, you know, cause it's complicated enough. We try and keep it simple. We're also measuring a bunch of physiology measures while they're doing this. Of course. And what was really unique is when we gave them that instruction, we said, okay, arousal time is over, you know, like go, try and go for it. 0 (44m 0s): If you can. There were two big shifts that happened. So the brain alpha activity came up quite a lot. And then something else we were monitoring called galvanic skin response, which is a measure of sympathetic nervous system activity dropped precipitously to the point we thought the sensor had fallen off. You know, the first couple of folks had happened with. And so what this suggests, you know, is this wasn't happening right before a climax. This is like at the instruction point minutes before they would get to climax. So some brain state appears to be necessary to have that experience that we didn't know existed, that we should probably document. 0 (44m 41s): And right now the only thing I really know about it as it seems like it's a big shift from, you know, high effort focused concentration to some kind of a letting go allowing the body, maybe to enter this state where it can have a lot of synchronous neural firing associated with climax. So I don't know how these data will hold up over time. You know, they're pretty new. We're still trying to replicate this. We did the work mainly in women. First, the challenge is guys just have such a shorter latency that, you know, as soon as we tell them to go for it, like, so we're having a much shorter window and kind of needing to figure out how to adjust for that. And then our big study on that got stopped with COVID because we had to shut the lab with the exposure risk. 0 (45m 26s): So we're going to get back to it. But that's the latest is it really seems to be a unique brain state that happens somewhere after getting aroused enough and actually having a climax and all the people who do tantra and all these other practices, we just never studied them. So I don't know if those altered states might like, is their altered state, just this, you know, maybe it's just that section. They just are expanding it out. Maybe it's nothing unique. I don't know. 1 (45m 56s): No, it's definitely interesting because if you see the health benefits from the altered state with psychedelics, you wouldn't be totally wild and out there to assume that there's a possibility that you could also achieve those with an altered state with, with sex, right. It's like, well, why not? If it seems possible. And again, I think I hope that there's more than just three or more than just you that's doing it because it does seem like really important work for a lot of people, the idea that sex and orgasm, especially if it's more, I guess like if it's more of like a fetish or a kink, it seems to be something that a lot of people don't want to acknowledge or talk about. 1 (46m 36s): And I've seen this on so many different documentaries and I've read this in books that there's a lot of people. And I guess, I guess you would say it's anecdotal. I'm not sure that if they have a trauma specifically, if maybe someone was raped and I read this and I think it was also in Jamie's book that a lot of the first responders to nine 11 were using like S and M clubs, if you will, to deal with their PTSD. And it's really common to use S and M specifically for reframing and like re rewriting that story and to kind of heal that, that trauma. So I'm curious if you've done any work in regards to like trauma healing and specifically anything with kink or like sexual reframing, 0 (47m 24s): Not with the kink, but with the orgasm meditation. We had some theories around exactly from some of the BDSM literature of my colleagues, how that might work. So I could imagine a lot of PTSD is effective dampening. So that is, it's very scary that this thing could happen again. And so I just need to shut my emotions off. And while I might like to feel good, it's too risky to feel good. I just need to shut everything off. So I don't fall off the deep end and become depressed or anxious. Again, it's much safer if I just shut everything down and that obviously with some other pieces, but it's generally PTSD in terms of its emotional impact. 0 (48m 5s): And so the idea was, is there a way you could get people into having intense emotional experiences that are safe, where they can start to have those, that feeling of intensity again, in a way that isn't frightening and they can do exposures essentially. So I can feel this high intensity, but positive pleasurable thing, and then I can come back from it and see that I'm still okay. And then I can do it again. I have this intense experience and I'm still okay. Kind of allowing your affective range to broaden out again. And so we do this with PTSD treatments already and doing exposures PTSD treatments are really challenging. 0 (48m 45s): So cognitive processing therapy or CBT is a really common one. And you're essentially walking through the components of the trauma that happened to you. Seeking safety is kind of a, another group way of dealing with PTSD and its effects. So why not go the other direction, you know, rather than doing the exposure to the negative stuff, can we do exposure to the high intensity, positive emotions and would that still be restorative? And we looked at that in orgasmic meditation kind of. And what I mean is we looked at people who already did orgasm meditation and what their trauma history was rather than getting people with a trauma history and assigning them, you know, and seeing what happened. 0 (49m 29s): And that's just a common kind of first step that is it's lower risk. If you've got people who are already having that experience, who were doing the thing you want to test. And what we saw was those people who had a trauma history in our study actually reported more sexual arousal in the context of orgasm meditation. So what we take from that is these people are not sexually broken, which is a common way of describing PTSD. They're not promiscuous, which is often applied because people with a PTSD history, especially a sexual trauma, tend to have a higher partner count, you know, as they get into adulthood. 0 (50m 10s): And it's very, very common to see, especially in marriage and family therapists, not all of them, some of them are, some are awesome. You know, say they're being promiscuous, they're acting out. There's a really common way of describing those sexual behaviors in people who have a trauma history. And I don't think that's right. You know, I think they're doing something that's working. And what I would like to know is what about that is working? You know, can we, can we capitalize on that? It's making them feel better. Somehow I have this people aren't stupid. And I'd like to know what's the ingredient in those sexual interactions, those increased interactions. And we thought from our study that maybe it is just, they're able to have these intense, emotional experiences in a way that's positive. 0 (50m 53s): You know, they can have them in a way that feels safe. And so obviously we still want people having sex. It's safe saying, you know, no one assaulting anyone consensual, all those good things. So that might be a great place to focus, you know, rather than trying to decrease the sex behaviors themselves, because it looks like they may be helpful in PT. So I don't want to squash those. I want to understand why they're doing it and see if we can enhance the positive effects. 1 (51m 20s): Yeah. Yeah. I think it's, it's really interesting. And again, it just seems like such an amazing alternative to someone who can't take psychedelics because right now you can only do it in, I think what two states here, maybe unless it's for research, so it's not accessible to anyone. Whereas, you know, sex obviously is accessible, especially if you're in clear just to everyone. Right. And it's, it's something that can be crippling for a lot of people, right? So it's like, why don't you want to provide some kind of information that is, you know, easily accessible, applicable, free for people to feel better. 0 (51m 58s): Absolutely. I think you're preaching to the choir here. That's I would love to, just to your point, you, I don't think there's any mask and spear see with the pills or anything. I think it's just simple economics it's who would fund work in general because no, one's going to profit from that. So the, I think the most likely way to make headway is to try and get that shift with NIH, with our funding agencies to say, okay, you will stop trying to care about orgasms. We know you're never going to give us money for that. So what we're really interested in is doing a sleep intervention study. 0 (52m 38s): And by the way, one of the arms of interventions is going to be climax before sleep. And we're going to look at the vasopressin titers and how they shift over time with that. That's something I think we could sell, you know, that the federal government largely has that role that is developing treatments, that aren't profitable, that aren't going to be developed through our capital approach to life in the U S that that aren't necessarily profitable, but that are needed for public health. And I hope that that's something we could see in the future where we're actually getting some federal dollars behind doing these as interventions. That's the kind of level of funding you need to do clinical trials. 1 (53m 16s): Yeah, I think so too. And you would assume that it would take some kind of financial burden off of the healthcare system if you did do this. So even though they're not profiting, you're still helping the in some way. And I think the beautiful thing, if this, actually, you know, starts to scale out and become more widely accepted and more widely researched is that you're going to take the air out of the wings, that of the people that are arguing from an emotional standpoint against all of these things, because you'll just have this hard data on these very real benefits, even like, you know, physiologically, like being able to sleep and people don't have to go and take Ambien every night so that you can't really argue from a moral standpoint at that point, because there's a real, real life application for something that's pragmatic. 0 (53m 58s): Yeah. I'd love to see deep arguing more from that perspective. I think we've got in a lot of cases, great animal data already. There's strong reason to think these things should be effective. And we just, you know, in some sense, need the, you know, NIH has to go every year to Congress and say, we need this much money. Will you give us these dollars? And it's a risk for them. And we realize like NIH is taking a risk when they find anything related to our kind of work. And so we need that public support to say, like, we want this done. You know, we don't want to be dependent on pills or having this expense, you know, like give us some options. And you know, I've also licensed as a psychologist. 0 (54m 39s): I see patients myself and worked in health clinics and you know, it always surprised me all the sleep assessments, all the interventions, nothing mentions sexuality, you know, it's not even in there. And then find someone finally did a questionnaire study, like just as a questionnaire study, like two years ago. They're like, do you use masturbation for sleep? And like almost the entire men and women, I was like, what are we doing? What, why are we not as why is this a, none of our assessments tell blind and dumb, or we, of course I asked, but that's a bias for sure. So it's absolutely not getting in. 0 (55m 20s): And the public absolutely knows that helps. And so we need, you know, enough support to be able to push back when NIH gets flack from Congress saying like, you spend our money on this and you shouldn't have, you know, we need the public to say, no, we want this. This is helping us. And I think, yeah, they're getting the data on the front end. Like I said, there's just so few of us, in some cases, you know, we need good collaborators. So in my science, I, I work with people who are experts in depression and people who are experts in cocaine issues. People just being sure that, you know, sex researchers are great, but it's a very narrow field and we've got to branch out and be sure we're talking to people, you understand how it affects and improves their field also, you know, like how can I help you? 0 (56m 7s): Let me show you a thing that we can do that. So like one example there, I listened to a talk when somebody is trying to study mixed effect. So it, it mixed effect is kind of like, shut-in fro-ing that is if you ever see someone fall and you're like, oh, you kind of laugh. You want them to be hurt, but it's kind of funny. That's like a mixed ethics state. And the question is like, is that, is it good or bad? And you know, so is this healthy or problematic? And then how does that work? Like, are the emotions simultaneously held or do they vacillate between good and bad? And the speaker was saying, yeah, we, you know, we have some trouble inducing, mixed effect in the lab. I was like, Ooh, well, them porn. 0 (56m 49s): I was like, you will know, I'm an emotion neuroscientists. I've shown them all the films, nothing induces, mixed effect better than pornography. And so that was a collaboration that's grown over time. And I think we just have to show you other sciences that we are not niche anymore. We are growing up and you need to integrate us into the things you're doing, but it's still my colleagues tell us the other interviewing grants, people who are studying reward processes. And that's the whole thing is about reward. And they never mentioned sex. They talk about sugar water. They talk about cake. And like, but the biggest reward, you just didn't mention it in your whole grant application. 0 (57m 30s): So there's still a weird issue within science too. Like we've got to kind of get the word out as it were that we're, we're looking, we're collaborating and we have things to offer. So there's, I think a lot of things, both the, we can use from the public to kind of help motivate the funding agencies that can get us to the clinical trial point who are going to have to push back against Congress. Because those, those jerks look at all of the abstracts for the words they don't like. And, and they don't like us. No doubt. And then having other scientists who are willing to collaborate with us who realize this is not a niche science or something weird, just because we happened to measure from the genitals, we have incredibly specific developed measures. 0 (58m 15s): And I think a lot of folks have no idea that that's going on in our fields because we're just tiny. 1 (58m 21s): So what can people do? Cause you mentioned push pushing back on Congress and to, to help the NIH when it comes to getting this funding for you guys, like what is a regular person? Can you do, do you write your congressperson? Like what are actionable steps? 0 (58m 39s): So there, it kind of depends yeah. Where we are in the process. So like when those grants came up for defunding, we need people who are willing to say, Hey, sex has been good for me. Like I, you know, I am not going to be embarrassed in silence to not speak up. So of course we'd prefer to have that kind of support before it gets to the crisis level of saying like, oh, now we need you to save us because our grants are being attacked, but there are groups that lobby for their particular disorder. There are lots of these. And if you have a systemic pain issue where you're saying, we want more money from NIH, you know, we want you to allocate more state. 0 (59m 22s): We want you to go try and get more money for our disease. And have you looked at Sex Research lately? Like, is there something we're working on that could be helpful to you? This is not even on their radar because that's where that comes from. You know, as a special interest group that says, you know, Hey, we would love to support you a Congress person, but this is what it would take. You know, we need someone who's investing in, you know, helping with our sleep issues or addressing systemic pain problems. We need natural alternatives to depression. And you know, it took a while, but now there's lots of research on meditation and various meditation forms. 0 (1h 0m 4s): A lot of that is regulated to a part of the NIH called in cam, which is like a national complimentary alternative medicine group. It may have changed his name recently actually don't quote me on that, but it kind of all went in this little group, but at least it got an area that would support it and say, let's see, let's see what meditation is doing. And they also test all the crazy claims about, you know, to shark fin cure this. They did the work around St. John's ward and depression to know that it interacted with birth control pills so that women became aware that yes, there may be some efficacy, but be aware that you may reduce the birth control efficacy if you do that. So like those institutes may be a good place for the special interests to help ask and just say like, is there something we haven't considered, you know, are you really doing all you can to help us? 0 (1h 0m 55s): And you know, are we blocking something out for no reason? And we still get advice when we talk to, so the way scientists interact with NIH is program officers are our POS. And so we'll contact our program. Officers say, Hey, we want to write about this. We want to do that. And they'll say, oh, you can't say that you can't use that word again. Yeah. But then you're going to have to cover it in this way. You're gonna have to characterize it in this other way. You know, as to say, POS have to stop needing to do that stuff. I can't, you know, I've had a few grants in where the feedback was like, but you're clearly studying the vagina. I was like, yeah, that's true. 1 (1h 1m 36s): And Oregon like learn about it a little bit. Yeah. 0 (1h 1m 41s): Well that's 1 (1h 1m 43s): Strange. Yeah, no, I think the work that you're doing is amazing. Can you tell the listeners where they can follow you, how they can support you if you're taking like private donations where they can do that. All of that good stuff. 0 (1h 1m 56s): The main source for me is Leebro center.com. So L I B E R O S center, all one word.com. That website has links to Twitter and whatnot. And a lot of the work we do, if you have an interest in doing a particular type of study, you know, we can work with you to set up grants that can be appropriately scaled for whatever you're able to support. We work with lots of foundations. And so that is something we're very much interested in continuing to work on these health benefits, but we need those partners. Other people who want to show the thing that they're doing is helpful. We can help demonstrate that if you want to reach out, we're always happy to have those conversations. 1 (1h 2m 35s): Awesome. Well, thank you so much for giving me your time. I had a great time in this conversation and I hope that people check out your website. 0 (1h 2m 42s): Thanks. I appreciate the combo. That's 1 (1h 2m 45s): It for this week's episode. If you enjoyed this podcast and you have a couple of minutes, please take the time to leave a five-star review and a comment that is the best way to help with my algorithm. And if you know anyone else that would enjoy this podcast, please share it with a buddy or two or three. And the last way that you can support the podcast is by going to Chatting with Candice dot com. 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