Episode 176: Ketone Measuring Tools, Proper Refeeding After Longer Fasts, Fasting Apps, Best Toothpaste Options And More!

Intermittent Fasting


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Aug 30

Welcome to Episode 176 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast, hosted by Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine and Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living An Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

Today's episode of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast is brought to you by:

 JOOVV: Like intermittent fasting, red light therapy can benefit the body on so many levels! It literally works on the mitochondrial level to help your cells generate more energy! Red light can help you burn fat (including targeted fat burning and stubborn fat!), contour your body, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, produce collagen for epic skin, support muscle recovery, reduce joint pain and inflammation, combat fatigue, help you sleep better, improve mood, and so much more!! These devices are literally LIFE CHANGING!!  Use The Link joovv.com/ifpodcast With The Code IFPODCAST For A Free Gift!

To submit your own questions, email questions@IFpodcast.com, or submit your questions here!! 


JOOVV RED LIGHT THERAPY DEVICES:  Use The Link Joovv.com/IFPodcast With The Code IFPODCAST For A Free Gift! 

BEAUTY COUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order!

Trey Suntrup (Biosense): Measuring Ketosis, Ketone Types, Fat Burning, The “Nebulous” State, Intermittent Fasting, Breath Vs. Blood, Keto Adaptation, MCTs, Exercise, Glycogen, And More!

IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life

Listener Feedback: Trina - New

Listener Q&A: Judi - What fasting app do you recommend?

Undated Deluxe Law of Attraction 12-Month Weekly Planner

Listener Q&A: Jen - Modified ADF “Up Day” number of meals vs overall nutritional content

Intermittent fasting, a possible priming tool for host defense against SARS-CoV-2 infection: Crosstalk among calorie restriction, autophagy and immune response

Siim Land: Autophagy, Metabolism, Protein Intakes, What Breaks A Fast, Anabolism And Catabolism, MTOR, Ketogenic Diets, Exercise, NMN, And More!

Listener Q&A: Lauren - Another toothpaste question


Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 176 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

I'm Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine: Lose Weight and Feel Great with Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, and Wine. And I'm here with my cohost, Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living an Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and ginstephens.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. So, pour yourself a cup of black coffee, a mug of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

Melanie Avalon: Hi friends. As you guys know, we always say that when you eat is just as important as what you eat to fulfill your best wellness lifestyle. Guess what? The same thing goes for natural light. With our modern indoor lifestyles, it can be hard to get enough natural light from the sun but getting a good amount of healthy light is important for your health. That's why we use and adore Joovv Red Light Therapy products. They shine wavelengths of red and near-infrared light right in the comfort of your own home.

You've heard us talk about Joovv before. They're our preferred brand because with their modular design, you can actually treat your entire body in the light. That helps support healthier cells for more energy, less inflammation, and better healing and recovery. I've personally been using my Joovv Mini at home for years now. I literally turn it on every single day. It's essential for keeping my daily routine on track and feeling my best.

I use the red light in the morning in the evening to really set my circadian rhythm and mood, and I use near-infrared during the day for targeted treatments. Joovv is by far the highest quality light therapy brand out there, and the customer service and the people are exceptional.

A lot of people's favorite reasons for using Joovv is for enhanced muscle recovery and targeted fat burning, enhance skin, but I think honestly my favorite is just the incredible effect it has on my mood. Joovv is literally a part of my daily life and I can't imagine my life without it. And now, qualifying customers can take advantage of special finance offers including 0% APR for up to 12 months. You can get your own device at joovv.com/ifpodcast and using that link with the code IFPODCAST will get you a free gift with your purchase.

And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that what you put on your skin gets direct access to your bloodstream and in your body can do a lot of detrimental things? So, while you may be fasting clean, you may at the same time be infusing your body with endocrine disrupters, which can mess with your hormones, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight and even carcinogens. In Europe, they've banned thousands of these compounds found and conventional skincare and makeup, and the US has banned less than 10. In fact, most conventional lipstick for example is high in lead. And the half-life of lead in the body can be up to 30 years. That means every time you put on some lipstick, you might be putting some lead into your bones, which might not leave for three decades. This is a big deal. Thankfully, there's an easy all-encompassing answer.

There's a company called Beauty Counter, and they were founded on a mission to make skincare and makeup products that are safe for your skin. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to not burden your body and support your skin health. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter and if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you'd like to learn more about safe beauty and also get a ton of have amazing discounts and free things from me, definitely get on my Clean Beauty email list, that's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. Not sure which Beauty Counter products to try? I also just made a whole series of online quizzes to match you to your perfect product. Those are at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz. So, here's the fasting clean inside and out. All right. Now enjoy the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode #176 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon, and I'm here with Gin Stephens.

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody.

Melanie Avalon: How are you today, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, if I sound tired, it's because I've just been on hold for an hour and a half with a company trying to get a product returned. So, I'm tired. Thank goodness for intermittent fasting or I would have needed like a couple meals and snacks in there.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I know. That's when you really know.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: When things like that do happen, and you're doing fasting, it's like the complete opposite. You're focused and-- I don't know, it's very helpful.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's true. Anyway.

Melanie Avalon: Is it resolved?

Gin Stephens: Well, no, but they're going to get to the bottom of it and send me an email. I'm like, “Okay, we'll see.”

Melanie Avalon: Our modern world of online delivery.

Gin Stephens: Here's the only thing I would like to say, I'm not going to mention any companies. But if you're ever shopping on one company, and this is not Amazon, it's a different one. So, not Amazon. If you're ever shopping on one company and it is their platform, but it is coming from another company but through their platform, do not do it. Go straight to the second company, do not order it through the other person. Because if you have a problem, neither company will-- They're like, “Oh, sorry, you need to talk to them. You need talk to them.” They're like, “Oops, that's them.” They're like, “Oops," Anyway, I got switched back and forth a whole bunch of times.

Melanie Avalon: It's actually like on Amazon ordering directly--

Gin Stephens: From a third-party seller?

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.

Gin Stephens: The good thing though is Amazon is really good about handling it.

Melanie Avalon: That's what I was going to say. They'll take care of you if the other company refuses to deal with it.

Gin Stephens: Yes, but this has just been very frustrating. So, the company that it's going to come from is who I would suggest you start with. Learned a very important lesson. I mean it's taken forever, so it's going to be fine. It's still this one bathroom. All this goes back to that one bathroom that we've been remodeling since January.

Melanie Avalon: Is this a guest bathroom?

Gin Stephens: It's a guest bathroom. Thank goodness. Although, funny story, the master bathroom is also unusable. So, we live in a four-bathroom house. And right now, we're showering in the other guest bathroom on the other side of the main floor because the people that lived in our house bought very fancy fixtures all the time. They didn't go to Home Depot and Lowe's and buy, I don't know, Delta faucets. They got super fancy faucets that you get through a designer that cost a bazillion dollars. But also, did you know that faucets and fixtures are not interchangeable. If our faucet was leaking in our master shower, you can't just swap it out. You have to get the same exact brand inside the wall because they have separate fixture attachments. I don't think I'm explaining it right. But yes.

Melanie Avalon: That makes sense. That's upsetting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, all the plumbers that have been coming, they're like, “We don't even know what brand this is," but you're going to have to dig it out and start over with. So, we can't shower in our master bathroom either because it's all disconnected. They're going to have to cut the tile, cut out the connection, and they're going to have to redo that. And then, they put this plate over it. So, hods, the cut they had to make. So, we're 50% in the bathroom department at the Stephens house, but thank goodness, we have extras, so it's really not a big deal. I'm getting exercise walking to the other side of the house for all my showers.

Melanie Avalon: That's true.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Anyway, eventually, actually, you're never finished in a house. I was going to say eventually we'll be done, but we won't. There'll be another project and another and another. That's just houses.

Melanie Avalon: I feel it's also 2020, a lot of people doing home projects and things like that.

Gin Stephens: It's really true. We had an architect come and draw up a screen porch edition and we've got a builder lined up. We have actually got two that are going to submit bids to us. And it's been two weeks, and we haven't even heard back from either of them. I think people are doing a lot of home remodeling right now because they're like, “If I'm going to be home, it's going to have to be amazing.” It'll all be done, so we're in good shape. I'm not complaining.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, all of my projects have been just going through all the stuff for my life. When quarantine-type stuff started, I was like, “Oh, in a month, I'll have gone through everything.” And still, here we are, I'm still doing it. So, it feels good, though.

Gin Stephens: What do you mean?

Melanie Avalon: I have so much memories, like photos and papers that I wanted to go through and throw out and make into scrapbooks, and then stuff from childhood. Just go through everything and try to cleanse my life. My habit now that I do every night that feels so good is, I only take about 15 minutes but I sit down, I turn on my Netflix, I watch something and I scrapbook, and I turn off all social media. And it feels so good. Feels really good. I recommend scrapbooking. You don't like scrapbooking though.

Gin Stephens: No.


Gin Stephens: I don't. I do recommend putting aside social media, it's harder for me with coordinating the large groups. Because even though I have fabulous moderators, they're amazing, sometimes they have questions for me. I do sleep, so they figure it out. They're awesome. But if I'm awake, I'm not too far from social media just because I feel I should be accessible to them.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, well, that's the way I am pretty much 24/7 with the exception of, I was like, “I'm just going to take this time and I'm just not, and I'm going to scrapbook.” Actually, really the reason I like scrapbooking is a lot of people are like, “Oh, you should color,” or “You should do something.” But I always feel I need to be productive or creating something. So, I can't just watch the TV. I have to make something. I feel like I was productive.

Gin Stephens: See, I can. I can just watch TV. But I put my phone to the side. Every night, Chad and I watch TV together. We watch one episode of something and whatever series we're working our way through. I put the phone down, although Messenger still pops up if I need to chat with the moderators, but I don't moderate the groups unless there's like an emergency. A Facebook emergency, but other than that, yeah, I do put it aside. I can just sit and watch television.

Melanie Avalon: I wish I could. It's a goal.

Gin Stephens: Well, I can't listen to things on audio. So, we're all different, and I think that's okay. I have no goal to change.

Melanie Avalon: Well, with audio, I do other things during it. That's my problem, is I need to be-- I'm like addicted to multitasking.

Gin Stephens: See, I prefer to focus on one thing. I think that just explained a lot right there. I don't like multitasking.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love it.

Gin Stephens: Whatever I'm doing, I am engaged in that.

Melanie Avalon: The only time I'm not multitasking is probably when I'm doing these shows, honestly. Yeah, doing these episodes is a relief because I don't multitask during it and I just take a moment.

Gin Stephens: Well, maybe if you realize the multitasking is stressing you out, you could try to focus on one thing at a time.

Melanie Avalon: It's the complete opposite.

Gin Stephens: It sounded like you were saying it was a relief to not be multitasking.

Melanie Avalon: Well, yes and no. I love multitasking, and it makes me feel good. Then, I feel I shouldn't be. So then, I won't, but then I want to. So, the best for me is just except that I like multitasking, but then also take these moments where I'm not multitasking to balance it out, like this show, for example. So, yeah. Can I share a really quick PSA?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: For listeners, as you guys know, Gin and I are not fans of measuring things like ketones to evaluate your state of ketosis, especially urinary ketone strips, because we'd rather you focus on the practical implementation of the fast and not whether or not your ketones are a certain level. That's been the messaging since day one, and I still stand by that. That said, for those people who are interested in doing a really deep dive into measuring their state of ketosis because that actually at the same time is also a really big passion of mine. I think it's actually very incredible and valid, if you are the type, that's your goal. It's not about the fasting. It's not about the lifestyle. It's because you're trying to literally hack something in your life with a ketogenic diet, whether it's like a health condition or something specific like that.

The reason I'm saying all of this is I recently had Trey Suntrup from a company called Biosense. They make the ketone breath analyzer, which their studies show, it's pretty comparable to what you can learn from a blood analyzer, like pricking your finger, with some exceptions. You'd have to listen to episode for the whole nuance. The reason I'm saying all this is, I'm actually really big fan of that, I have a Biosense device. And I realized after releasing that episode that a lot of people thought that I personally think you should never measure ketones, which is not at all what I personally think. So, this is just a really brief PSA that if that is of interest to you, I support it. Melanie does. Come into my community, my separate community from this show for that, so I'll put a link in the show notes to the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast episode where I talked about it, and also my Facebook group which is IF Biohackers. So, if that's of interest to you, definitely join me there. I just wanted to share that really quick PSA.

For normal people, not normal people, but if you're not the crazy biohacking, wanting to measure the ketones, like that whole thing, just keep on keeping on. Don't stress about ketones please. And please, please, don't get urinary ketones ships because we could talk for an hour about why those are very misleading. For people who are new to the show, new to this whole world, basically, when you first start entering into ketosis through intermittent fasting or a ketogenic diet or something like that, at the beginning, your body starts creating a lot of ketones. And there's actually three types of ketones, which is what I learned in that episode, you've got to listen to it. Your body starts creating a lot of them and in the initial beginning, it's not quite adept at using them because it's just not, and a lot of them get excreted through the urine.

So, at the beginning, people will often see something on their urinary test strips if they're using those, but as you continue into ketosis, it all changes. Like I said, there's actually three types of ketones, BHB, acetoacetate, and acetone. And all of that gets nuanced and changes around the more you get ketogenic and your body gets adapted to fasting. So, things are basically really complicated and it's very helpful to have a very comprehensive understanding if it's something that you do want to explore, which is again, why I wanted to have that episode on my other show, The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. So, any comments on that, Gin?

Gin Stephens: No. I think that was great. And thank you for clearing all that up.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. All right. Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. So, to start things off, we have some feedback. This feedback comes from Trina, the subject is “New.” Was that the entire subject, do you think? I don't know. She says, “Hi, Gin. I'm just becoming interested in IF since entering early menopause and having difficulty losing weight. I'll admit hearing Gin reference her previous weight at 210 on episode nine,” that was episode nine of our show? Wow. Long time ago.

Gin Stephens: I've probably said it on lots of episodes.

Melanie Avalon: “Was very revealing, but more so that transparency encouraged me. I'm currently 48 years old and I'm 209,” so very similar to Gin what your weight was, “at a very low point. I'm starting with your earlier podcasts, so I'm aways from your current podcast. Just know that I'll be stalking you guys to get caught up. Just wanted to say hi, and thanks.” I wonder when she'll get caught up to this episode. But, yeah, I thought that was a nice little thing to share.

Gin Stephens: Thank you, Trina. And you're right. Yeah, I was 210. And it's really hard to believe that was me, even to me, because it's been so long ago. That was 2014, so it's been over six years since I was at that weight. You can do it, Trina. Be patient with your body if you're entering early menopause because that's not a season of our lives known for easy weight loss. Just be prepared that while you're going through the hormonal shifts of menopause, it might take some time to see the weight loss that you're looking for.

Melanie Avalon: Yep, I think that's great.

Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Judy. Judy says, “Hello. What fasting app do you recommend? And I had been doing intermittent fasting for several weeks. I felt better, lost a few pounds, and then sort of fell off the wagon. And I'm finding it hard to get back on. How do you suggest getting restarted when you break the cycle of intermittent fasting? Thanks.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, two great questions. So, fasting apps, do you recommend a go-to one or do you not? I remember you talked about it in your book, but you didn't mention one, right?

Gin Stephens: I did have a go-to app, but now I don’t. My go-to app was the one that my son Cal made, he made it for me. It was Window Intermittent Fasting Tracker. He made it for me back in 2016. At that time, 2016, there are like two apps out there. And one of them you could preset for 16:8 or 24, and that was it. And they also had maybe a couple of apps that let you track your fast, but I was wanting to track my eating window. So, I was like, "I need you to make me an app. I want to track my window." And so, it was called “Window,” not surprisingly. And over time, he made it better and better and better. It was fabulous.

And then a year ago, he was graduating from Georgia Tech and getting ready to start a full-time job at Airbnb, which is where he is working now. And he was also about to set out on this amazing cruise with his now-wife, and he was going to be proposing and he was really just kind of done with having to monitor an app all the time. He provided fabulous customer support, by the way, but he sold the app. Long story short, sold it to another company, and they have since changed the app a lot. And also, they have a new pricing structure. So, people who used it for a long, long time, found that it was really different.

I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for the Window app, but we're no longer affiliated with it. And so, I hate to recommend it just because some of the changes they made, it's very clear were made by people who don't understand intermittent fasting. Does that make sense? Some of the wording like, “Choose your intermittent fasting diet,” kind of wording. It no longer fits with my mindset towards fasting, if that makes sense.

Melanie Avalon: I was actually really, really curious if that was the case or if that had happened. So, it's really interesting.

Gin Stephens: They changed it. Interestingly, they didn't offer to stay connected to me, because if they had, I would have been willing to give them lots of great advice and also promoting it in the communities. But they did not, which is fine. They bought the app, they can do what they want with it. But some of the changes were not changes that were well received by the people who had been using it for years. That's all I'm going to say.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, actually, we've had quite a few apps approach us about partnering with the show and there's not really like one app, I think, that we endorse. And oftentimes, it's actually ties back into what I was saying at the beginning about measuring ketones and things like that, especially with ketones people will think, “Oh, this measure means this,” or, “This means this.” Some of the apps will say like, “Oh, at this time, you're entering autophagy,” and it's like, how do they know that?

Gin Stephens: They've added that to the Window app as well.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really?

Gin Stephens: I think so. I hear from people. I still have the original version because I have mine set to not update. So, if I ever wanted to use it again, I could still use the old version. And I'm not anti the Window app. So, nobody think that I am, I will always have a very soft spot for it. But sometimes people think I'm still affiliated with it because I talked about it in Delay, Don't Deny. And I want to make it clear that I'm not, that's all I'm saying.

Melanie Avalon: This is like the episode of making things clear. [laughs] Making it clear where we stand on things. Oh, my goodness, that's really funny. The only app I've actually used, and I haven't used it extensively, and I don't know if they've made updates and I don't know your thoughts, Gin, but I have used Zero before.

Gin Stephens: I say I haven't used any of the others. That's the thing. I've never used them. I had no need to. And even right now, I have no need to because if I wanted to use an app, I would just use my version of Window the original that. It's not the original, he updated it, so it's the version that it was when he handed it over. That's what I still have.

Melanie Avalon: I'm impressed that you've been able to maintain not updating it. I feel like the iPhone is really good at sneaking in.

Gin Stephens: Oh, I have that turned off, the automatic updates.

Melanie Avalon: I do too. I don't know, but I feel they find ways.

Gin Stephens: They're not updating that. If they ever did, well, okay, but it would be lost to me, but I hope they don't because I feel like almost like I'm the mother of that app, too.

Melanie Avalon: I know. That's so interesting.

Gin Stephens: And now it's grown up and doing its own thing, so I can no longer control it. It's doing its own. Living its own life. There's a nice analogy for you.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Well, so we're not that much help there. But now our thoughts on fasting apps.

Gin Stephens: Well, the second part of her question.

Melanie Avalon: Her second part about getting back on the wagon. I guess we should first address, is she falling off the wagon? I think you talked about that in your book, didn't you, Gin?

Gin Stephens: I do. I have a whole chapter. “There is no wagon.

Melanie Avalon: And why is there no wagon?

Gin Stephens: Well, because intermittent fasting is a lifestyle, and I want you to commit to-- Judy and anyone listening, I want you to commit to, “Hey, I live in intermittent fasting lifestyle.” And so, here's what happens when you're in the cycle of wagons and on and off the wagon. You get off the wagon, and you're like, “Well, I quit. I'm not doing that.” And then, you get in this cycle of, I'm not doing it, but then you are doing it, but then I'm not doing it. Instead, think of, you are an intermittent faster and some days you'll have shorter fasts. And some days, you'll have longer fasts. If you have some days where you only fast for 12 hours because you get up and eat breakfast at 8:00 AM and then you stop eating by 8:00 PM, and you had a 12-hour eating period that day, you still had a 12-hour fast. So, if you just think of it like that and it breaks the cycle of off and on, that can really just help you free up the mental space to like, “Okay, I didn’t quit. I'm not off the wagon. I didn't fall off. I just had some longer eating windows, some shorter fasts, and I'm ready to tighten up that eating window.”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think that's so important, so key. Honestly, my suggestion is just jump back in like the way you would at the beginning.

Gin Stephens: People who had been doing intermittent fasting very sporadically, and they weren't really doing it and then maybe the whole quarantine derailed people completely, and they just completely stopped from the stress. And so, a lot of people who had been experienced intermittent fasters and then quit, found that doing the 28-Day FAST Start from Fast. Feast. Repeat., helped them get their mind back in the game. Because the key is, you've got to get your mind back in the game and your body has to get back in the game. If you've been off intermittent fasting for a long time, it sounds easy to say just start back but your body's going to have to be retrained. Start fresh if you need to, but once you make that mental shift, I am doing an intermittent fasting lifestyle, then you never have to tell yourself I've fallen off the wagon ever again. You're just, “Well, today, I had a shorter fast and that's okay.”

Melanie Avalon: I do have an idea that I think some people like to do, I like to do this, but I've also read that you shouldn't do this. So, I'm actually really curious to hear your thoughts on it. But that's for with any new “habit,” although not that intermittent fasting is a habit. Like we just said, it's a lifestyle and you're not on or off. But with something like that, I love having my calendar, and I really love Lisa Frank.

I have these big sticker books of Lisa Frank stickers. And I love putting them each day on the calendar if I'm trying some new habit or if it was a dietary approach, or maybe it's a new window, every day. It's the Streaks idea, like the Streaks app that a lot of people have. I find it really motivating and encouraging and I think it shows me patterns really well in my life. But I've also read that you shouldn't do that because then it can make people nervous that they're going to break their streak. But I personally find it really helpful. Do you have thoughts on stuff like that, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, when you think about that, the 28-Day FAST Start is a similar idea. I'm encouraging people to give yourself 28 days to let your body adjust and every day you're doing it. So, I completely agree with the mindset of getting into a habit, then you just keep doing it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And I think it can be hard to remember-- well, not hard to remember, but when you see it, especially in your bright, spark Lisa Frank stickers, especially if you've been doing it a few days, you can look and automatically see, “Wow, it feels good. Oh, look at me.”

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. I'm a schoolteacher. Those kind of things are right up my alley. I could make you a sticker chart at any moment. I could break one out. [laughs] Do not question sticker charts to an elementary teacher. Ah-ha. I'll make you a sticker chart.

Melanie Avalon: It's also really great if you find the perfect calendar which, friends, I have found the perfect calendar. I now order it every single year. I'll put link to it in the show notes. I forget the brand, but it's pretty much like-- it's some artists but every month is an animal. I'm a sucker for colors and glitter as you might imagine with the Lisa Frank reference, but it's just the most beautiful, motivating, inspiring colors ever. So, if you get that calendar and get some Lisa Frank stickers, it's a very motivational thing for your kitchen.

Gin Stephens: And does anyone know my thoughts about glitter?

Melanie Avalon: I'm guessing Gin does not like glitter.

Gin Stephens: I don't like glitter.

Melanie Avalon: You don't like glitter?

Gin Stephens: Oh my God. Glitter is like from Satan.

Melanie Avalon: Ask me what is my favorite thing?

Gin Stephens: Is it glitter?

Melanie Avalon: I love glitter.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I was a gifted teacher and I let the children do anything in the entire world that did not break the law. If it was not against the law or the school rules, they could literally do anything they wanted in my classroom creatively, except for one thing.

Melanie Avalon: No glitter.

Gin Stephens: No glitter. A new kid, I remember one day, she's like, “Do you have any glitter?” And the other kids were like, “She does not. She does not have glitter.” [laughs] I'm like, “I got anything else you want. I got everything up in my tubs up on the cabinets." I had anything, you name it, I could pull it out. But there was no glitter.

Melanie Avalon: Can I share one of my favorite memories? Which would have been probably one of your worst memories?

Gin Stephens: Did it involve getting glitter everywhere? [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: In college, I went with my two best girlfriends to a Kesha concert, who we know-- Kesha is a big glitter fan. You can tell this was before my Beauty Counter days. I think we took hairspray. I think it was hairspray. It was. Oh, my goodness, Gin, I have changed so much. We took hairspray and we sprayed our entire bodies with hairspray and then we took glitter and we just threw it on our body so that we were just like walking glitter.

Gin Stephens: Oh my God, I would not even allow you into my house. I would have to hose you down in the neighbor's yard. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Oh my gosh. I'm going to send you a picture from my scrapbook.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, make a scrapbook page of that one. That's funny.

Melanie Avalon: I do have a scrapbook page of that one, so I will send to you.

Gin Stephens: Sharpies. Those are my things. I had so many Sharpies, you wouldn’t believe it. Sharpies and markers and paper.

Melanie Avalon: Did you have those scented markers?

Gin Stephens: Mr. Sketch?

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: That's the brand. Yep. Mr. Sketch.

Melanie Avalon: Do they still make those?

Gin Stephens: They do still make Mr. Sketch. I didn't like them though. I liked them when I was a kid. But as a grownup, I didn't, because I realized I didn't like fake smelly things.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. Now, I would not. They would not be allowed in the apartment, but in childhood--

Gin Stephens: And all the children over there huffing the markers. Yeah, no, we didn't do that. I did not have those in my classroom. But I did that as a child.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, friends. I have a story for you. So, about a year ago, I was doing a lot of IV chelation for my mercury toxicity and it was creating bruises in my veins, which was a little bit upsetting. And then, one day, my doctor pulled out this device and told me it would fix the bruising. I was a little skeptical, especially because it looked like a very intense device that could do very intense things, and this was my delicate veins we were talking about. But shockingly, he applied it to my veins and in the next few days, the bruising was gone. Flash forward a few months later, I was seeing a chiropractor. I've always had this really intense knot in my upper right shoulder. And then to my surprise, he pulled out the same device and used it on my shoulder and the effects were incredible. We're talking shoulder pain, gone.

I thought that this was clearly a medical device only available to doctors and chiropractors. Turns out, it's actually available to the general public. Oh, hey, yep, we're talking about a product called Theragun. The founder, Dr. Jason, has a heart of gold. He actually developed it after suffering from a traumatic motorcycle accident. Nothing on the market seemed to help him so he decided to take things into his own hands. He created Theragun to help people feel better naturally. In 2014, he met with the New England Patriots, and they immediately requested units for the entire team. That's how effective this device is.

It's scientifically calibrated with a specific combination of depth, speed, and power to release your deepest muscle tension. What I really love is that it comes with a lot of different attachments, so you can really tailor it to any part of your body. I actually used it right before recording this because that muscle spot was acting up. And right now, it feels so good. And super exciting, Theragun now has the all-new Gen 4, which has a proprietary brushless motor that's so quiet, you might actually wonder if it's even on. Think about the equivalent of an electronic toothbrush in the sound department.

And you can try it risk-free for 30 days. Yep, if you're not satisfied, you'll get all of your money back. I really believe there's no substitute for this Theragun Gen 4. It has an OLED screen, personalized Theragun app and the quiet and power that you need. It starts at only $199. You can go to theragun.com/ifpodcast right now and get your Gen 4 Theragun today. And I really recommend getting it today while they have it in stock. Once again, theragun.com/ifpodcast. All right, now back to the show.

So, our next question comes from, Jen. It's a long one, are you ready? So, the subject is, “Modified ADF Update Number of Meals Versus Overall Nutritional Content.” Okay, this was long, but I think it has a really good question in it.

So, Jen says, “Hi, ladies, I recently discovered your great podcast and I binge-listened to all the episodes to catch up on everyone to see if my question has been answered before writing in, but I don't think it has, at least not quite for my specific question. Regarding alternate day fasting, I'm wondering if it's the number and/or timing of the meals on the up days that matters most or is it the overall nutritional intake? With one large meal that is roughly equivalent in terms of nutritional content to two smaller meals spread over a longer eating window be equally protective of metabolic rate?

Some background on me, I'm a woman in my late 30s with a normal BMI and I had been doing low carb, high fat as well as a prolonged stint of keto with IF 16:8 throughout with some days off on the weekends for the past three years, or so I thought. After listening to this podcast, I now know I wasn't fasting clean or even really fasting at all, to be honest, because I was just putting just a splash of heavy whipping cream or unsweetened plant-based creamer in my coffee because based on what others had told me, I was still fasting as long as I was consuming under 50 calories and not using any sweetener. I was also drinking a bunch of unsweetened flavored dessert teas like vanilla bean, macaron, and butterscotch Blondie, as well as sipping broths and lots of unsweetened fruit-flavored seltzer like Lacroix, bone broth, bulletproof coffee, [unintelligible [00:32:58] brood cacao. I was sipping at all throughout my fast because I thought if I had no sweeteners, or just that, it was okay. I always had to be drinking something to quell my hunger and it was a struggle to barely make it to 16 hours.

And on the weekends, I often couldn't even make it that far. I now know why. And on top of that, despite my supposed fasting and low carb, high fat and keto efforts, I lost zero weight and even gained a couple pounds.” Before we go on, do you want to comment on that at all, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that is so much like the way I was early on before I read The Obesity Code. I was the same exact way because we were all just caught up in the calories in, calories out mindset. And if I wasn't eating a breakfast biscuit, I was fasting. And so, yeah, and just like Jen said, it was so hard. It was so hard. It was a struggle. I was basically white knuckling it every single day, so I get it.

Melanie Avalon: It's so interesting because when I first started intermittent fasting, I was not clean fasting, and it wasn't hard.

Gin Stephens: Well, I wonder if it has to do with-- I mean, you also were not obese. You probably didn't have crazy insulin resistance and your insulin levels were probably lower in general. Just overall.

Melanie Avalon: I honestly have no idea.

Gin Stephens: Well, also you were very young. So, that's really important. I was in my 40s and obese, and I think that's a huge factor.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm not saying that to challenge the clean fast, because fast forward to now, I'm like, completely an advocate of it. I just find that really interesting. I was just thinking about the stuff she was drinking because I was thinking about what I was drinking, which was flavored teas and stevia and all of that stuff. The thing actually that is interesting, my timeline was-- I think I probably cleaned up my food. I went paleo. That's when I cleaned up the fast and it was just all so beneficial.

Gin Stephens: And see mine was the opposite. I cleaned up the fast which made my body just naturally cleaned up the food after cleaning up the fast.

Melanie Avalon: It's so interesting how that happens. So, I was low carb for quite a while and then I added intermittent fasting, and I was doing one meal a day, and I heard about paleo from Robb Wolf, who I just interviewed, friends. I already said that I think on the show, but I interviewed him. It was crazy. I cried, almost. But in any case, I heard about paleo. I literally remember the day I heard about it. Gin, did you ever have like your crazy diet friend who would do all the crazy diets with you?

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, okay.

Gin Stephens: I did not. Nobody was as crazy as me. Nobody.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I did. Shout out to Ben MP. So, I remember we would always do all the things together. He actually did the one meal a day with me when we first did it. I remember he was like, “Have you heard of this thing called paleo? I'm thinking of trying it.” And that's when I looked it up. It's so interesting because, Gin, people think with the fast eating, they're like, “Oh, what difference can it make cleaning up the fast?” That was my literal first thought. I was like, “What difference can it make cleaning up my food? I'm already fasting. I'm already doing one meal a day. Not really going to make much of a difference.”

Gin Stephens: Huge difference.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's interesting how we have similar-- for me the food and you the fasting, similar experiences of that whole experience of not appreciating the difference that might make and then realizing and just wanting to tell all the people.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. That's really it. The fact that we're not trying to take away your delicious sipping broths just because we're mean. Or we're not suggesting you gravitate towards real food just because it's amazing how different you feel.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, if it didn't feel absolutely so much more amazing on the other side, we wouldn't be advocating it. And to the food point, you find when people start fasting, they start craving more natural foods. The same, I feel, if you clean up your food, you start craving those foods and they taste so much more delicious. Anyway, back to her question.

She says, “I started to clean fast this past spring, just plain filtered water with the occasional unsweetened plain green tea or plain black coffee and was blown away by how much easier IF was with the clean fast and how great I felt.” Oh, my goodness, we just said this. So, she said, “Before I just thought IF is a way to lose weight. But now, I'm a convert for life for all the benefits I now know about, thanks to this podcast.

I also finally dropped those last stubborn seven pounds and got to my goal weight that has been eluding me for nearly eight years now." Yay." I can now easily breeze well past 16 hours with a clean fast and I've naturally settled to fasting 20 to 22 hours or longer daily with one meal a day. I basically break my fast when I feel hungry, which almost always is at least 20 hours into the fast. I don't check my eating window. I just eat one meal a day to satiety, which typically naturally results in a three to five-hour eating window. I feel best when I eat in the early to mid-afternoon and finish eating by 5:00 or 6:00 PM because I don't sleep well if I'm full and I feel sluggish the next day if I've eaten too late the day before. Because of my changing work schedule, however, I do one to two longer fast weekly of around 40 to 44 hours each, and they are so easy, and I feel absolutely great when I do them.

These longer fasts are usually spaced two days apart. So, I guess it's like doing ADF part of the week with one meal a day the rest of the week. For example, I'll typically have Monday and Wednesdays as down days where I eat nothing because I'm at work all day, and Tuesday and Thursday will be my up days. Friday through Sunday, I do standard one meal a day after fasting around 20 to 22 hours with occasional shorter 18-hour fast depending on how I'm feeling that day. The issue is that my up days on Tuesdays and Thursdays are still one meal a day. Not because I'm purposely trying to be restrictive, that's just what is comfortable and feels natural for my body. But after listening to this podcast and hearing Gin talk about ADF and the importance of eating at least two, and possibly three meals on up days to maintain metabolic rate, I'm concerned that I'm doing damage to my metabolism.

As an aside, I didn't even know what ADF was until I listened to this podcast. So, I didn't know that what I was doing with my longer weekly fast was even a thing. After hearing Gin talk about the importance of the refeeding on the up days, I've tried to eat at least two meals and extend my window, but I just can't. Mentally, I'm there, it makes total sense to me. But physically, I just can't. Is this part of the appetite correction Gin often talks about? I get so satiated with my first meal and one meal a day in general that I feel completely full and satisfied for the rest of the day. I've tried eating a smaller first meal on my up day, so I can eat more later, but that doesn't help. And I end up eating even less during the day, then if I eat into full satiety to begin with. If I were to eat a second meal, I'd have to extend my window so long that it basically blends right into my bedtime or I'd even have to stay up later just to accommodate a second meal somewhat comfortably, but then I'd be uncomfortable at bedtime.

My most recent up day, I forced myself to eat a second meal. It was really small, and it truly felt like a chore and obligation the entire time. I felt physically unwell, overly full, had terrible sleep. I felt sluggish and bogged down and uncomfortably full, yet paradoxically hungry the entirety of the next day, it was awful.”

"So, again," I think this is coming to her question, “Is it the number and/or timing of the meals on the up days that matters most? Or is it the overall nutritional intake? I don't like to use the term 'calories.' Is it okay for me to just eat one big satisfying meal on my up day if the overall nutritional intake would be equivalent or close to the two smaller meals I would otherwise have to force myself to eat? I'm an omnivore and don't follow a popular diet though in general, I try to avoid heavily processed foods and eat lots of vegetables and relatively lower carb than the standard American diet, but it's not low carb.

Even before listening to this podcast and having ADF/5:2 on my radar, I naturally ate more on my up days than on my typical one-meal-a-day days, but it was still a one-meal-a-day pattern and still finishing by around 6:00 PM. I don't count calories. I don't track macros. I just eat to satiety. And on these up days after a 40 to 44-hour fast, sometimes after 48 hours, I just naturally eat more than I do on a standard one-meal-a-day day where I fasted for around 20 to 22 hours. Is that okay? Does that protect my metabolic rate? Or do I need to eat at least two distinct meals over an extended window?

The thought of grazing tiny snacks all day as another option sounds miserable. When I eat, I want to eat. Skipping my weekly 40-hour fast is also not an option because it's a necessity given my work schedule and work environment on those days. Honestly, I don't want to skip those longer fasts anyways because they make me feel great. Thank you so much, ladies. I've learned exponentially more about IF from you these past three months than I have the past three years trying to do this on my own. Happy fasting, Jen.”

And then she does say, “Unrelated, but I came across a review article on fasting, COVID, and the immune system you two might find interesting.” I remember there were some questions about that in the previous episode, and we'll put a link to it in the show notes. It's called Intermittent Fasting, a Possible Priming Tool for Host Defense Against Sars-Cov-2 Infection: Crosstalk Among Calorie Restriction, Autophagy, and Immune Response. So very exciting.

Gin Stephens: That one's come up a bunch in the fasting groups, by the way, people have shared it.

Melanie Avalon: What's been the general conversation around it?

Gin Stephens: Well, it's a theory. They're like, “We think this could be helpful.” That's basically spoiler alert. That's what the article says. “We think fasting is probably great. That's it.” It just has to do with how fasting strengthens the immune system. And so therefore, they think that it would be a helpful tool.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. We'll put links to that in the show notes. So back to Jen’s question. I know that was really long, but I feel like this might be something a lot of people-- do you find people experience this, Gin? They're doing an ADF-ish type thing and then on their up days, they're just not feeling that urge or that need to-- Well, I guess we should first address her question for the up day, does it have to be meals spread out throughout the day? Or can it still be in a one-meal-a-day pattern?

Gin Stephens: I feel so very strongly about this that I would recommend not having the longer fast at all if you cannot have a refeed. I would not do it. Especially if you're somebody like Gin, who's at her ideal weight because the whole point of doing a longer fast and protecting your metabolism through the longer fast-- of course, the up day is protective of metabolism, but also you need to be well fueled during the longer fast.

So, let's imagine that you're at your ideal weight, our bodies, especially women, we need a certain amount of body fat. I was looking it up the other day because somebody was talking about their level of body fat and it was really low to me, and I looked and it was really low, for a woman. We have a certain percentage that we should be just for fat reserves, which is more than men should have. And so, when you start getting into the athlete level of fat percentage, our body is going to start to freak out, especially if she's in her late 30s. I don't know if she ever plans to have children, I don't know. But we certainly as women in our fertile years do not want to get into the state where our bodies are like, “Oh, gosh, we are over-restricting.” And so, I think that would be the perfect storm of, for your body. I mean, the bad one, the bad perfect storm because you're doing these longer fasts, you're at a really good weight already, and you're not willing to do a sufficient refeed, and you want to stick to one meal a day. That sounds like a really bad scenario for your body. And I would not recommend that at all.

If you want to do a longer fast, then you're going to have to have a longer window the next day to fit in more food because think about it from your body's point of view, not a lot of fat reserves, fasting over 40 hours, sometimes up to 48 hours twice a week, and then the next day only eating one meal. So, that's not going to send the, “Hey, we're well-fueled," message to your body.” It's not, it just isn't.

So, you're going to have to figure out a way to send that message to your body, and saying that it's not possible to-- you said skipping my weekly 40-plus hour fast is not an option because it's a necessity given my work schedule. I don't think any work schedule is going to expect people to not eat. You may feel really great working in the fasting state, and I get that. You're going to have to figure out a way to fuel your body.

I would not recommend one meal a day after the longer fasts, especially for someone at their ideal weight.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really glad we included this question. I think that's a really good message to put out there. I bet a lot of people probably wish they had Jen's problem, but I agree with everything that you said.

Gin Stephens: So, you really want to fill your body well. And it's tricky because we hear that in the groups, people were like, “Well, I'm just not hungry. I don't want to force myself to eat because isn't that against everything you've said?” Yes, it really does sound to be against everything we've said, forcing yourself to eat. But the thing is, is that you need to give yourself a longer period of time to let your appetite wake back up because if you over-restrict and over-restrict and over-restrict, that is not good for your body long term.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so it sounds like, Jen, your two potential options here are continuing to do your ADF but just trying to still work to find a way to have those adequate refeeding days, or just do a one-meal-a-day pattern, every day.

It reminded me of something else tangential, but related that I'd like to touch on, if I may because she was talking about how the difference between two meals versus one meal at once. I'm reading right now, Siim Land is coming out with a new book. I've had him on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. The first episode I had him on was all about autophagy actually. So, if you'd like to learn all about that, definitely check that out. But his new book is called Stronger By Stress. Incredible. It's incredible. Well, knowing Siim Land, it's very, very intense and long and lots of information, but he does a really, really good job of providing a very thorough overview of-- The book is about the different ways that we can experience hormetic stress to make us stronger.

So, things like fasting, cold exposure, sauna, plant toxins, as well as healthy emotional stress. So, reframing our mindset and our perspective and he talks about things like stoicism, and it's really a valuable resource. But the point of this was is, we get a lot of questions on this show about people who are exercising and wanting to build muscle, and are concerned that they can't build adequate muscle with intermittent fasting. And he actually talks about that a lot and I found it really valuable because I learned a lot. So, people think with like protein, for example, that we can only-- we're often told that we need to eat protein constantly throughout the day to support muscle, that's been the general message. But what we know is that as long as you eat an adequate amount of protein within 24 hours of catabolism, so muscle breakdown, you can have adequate muscle build-up. The way this ties into the one versus two is, however, we have a gene called mTOR and it's what stimulates that growth state and that recovery state so actually when we're talking about this refeeding day, that's really important, part of that is evolving into a simulation, which is telling the body to grow and recover and build itself up again.

The way it works though, it's really interesting. When you eat a meal, especially high in protein, it stimulates mTOR, but it caps out. So, if you have a meal with decent amount of protein, you will stimulate up to a certain amount of mTOR expression. If you keep eating protein in that same meal, it's not like you stimulate mTOR more, it's kind of just it's on, which is totally fine, and you can still get all the protein you need but if you want to specifically build muscle and practice intermittent fasting, you can. But you probably need to have a longer window with two or even three separate meals with protein because when you do that, you'll stimulate mTOR multiple times for the muscle growth, if that makes sense. I just thought that was actually really, really valuable. And it just sparked my memory because you're talking about two versus one meal.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, there's definitely a difference.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so this is just for people who are like bodybuilders. If you want to have muscle growth and do intermittent fasting, you probably want to have a longer window with two or three meals that are stimulating mTOR rather than having it all in one meal.

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Gin Stephens: All right, so we have a question from Lauren. And it says, “Hi ladies, I love your podcast. I've been clean fasting since May 8, and I'm down 20 pounds.” Wow, that is a lot in such a short time. That's awesome.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, by the way, her subject is another toothpaste question.

Gin Stephens: Another toothpaste question. All right. Yeah, today on the Ask a Moderator in the Delay, Don't Deny group, there were two toothpaste questions one after the other. I wanted to say, “Look up there.” [laughs] Scroll up. All right, so trust me, I've seen them all. She says, “I started my fitness journey in 2014. I've never seen results like I am seeing with IF. In respect to clean fasting, I would like to stop using Colgate toothpaste. I have two questions. I have heard on the podcast that just thinking about food or having anything including toothpaste in your mouth could spike insulin levels, especially if it's anything sweet tasting. Now, this might be weird, but I'm a huge salty snack person. I used plain baking soda and water to brush my teeth for the first time and my brain said, ‘Oh, this is something salty.’ Do you think I'm spiking my insulin levels because my body now thinks I'm eating something salty?”

If I could just pop right in and answer that one, our brain doesn't respond to salt or mineral tastes the same way it does to something sweet. So, the answer would be no. All right.

“I did feel hungry right after this, but I was also just about to break my fast regardless, so it was hard to tell. Second question, I find that the baking soda a little too bland, not feeling refreshed. Is adding one to two drops of organic peppermint oil into my homemade toothpaste okay? Or do you think this is not respecting a clean fast?

Bottom line. If my salty tooth is maybe spiking insulin and the peppermint oil is maybe questionable, is it even worth using homemade toothpaste or should I just use regular old Colgate? So far, IF has been effortless. Not sure why I'm overthinking this one so much. Hope this email wasn't too long and hope to hear from you both soon. Love the podcast. Thanks for all your support.”

Melanie Avalon: Well, first of all, I think it's funny she said she hopes it wasn't too long. We just read a novel. So, a few different questions in here, but Gin already answered the salt one. And if you think about it, oftentimes people doing fasting or particularly ketogenic diets with fasting, it's often very much encouraged that they might need electrolytes during the fast which is often a salty thing. So, don't have to worry about the salt.

This is just theorizing and talking. If some reason, a person does-- she says she feels it made her hungry. What are your thoughts on that?

Gin Stephens: I also have learned that what people say made me “hungry.” A lot of people have a lot of definitions for what they mean by made me hungry. A stomach growl, for example. So, it's hard to answer. A stomach growl is not technically hunger. That's a mechanical action. My stomach just growled, I think, right after I said that. My stomach growled. Does it mean I'm hungry? No.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. In any case, short answers with salt, it's not a problem. But it's for adding one to two drops of organic peppermint oil, I think that's completely fine. We've talked about peppermint before on this podcast and I always with peppermint have found it-- I use homemade peppermint breath spray every day, I find it kills my appetite. I've read studies where it reduces appetite, for you, but does it make you hungry?

Gin Stephens: No, it's fine for me. My brain does not associate it with a timed release of insulin. I use peppermint Burt's Bees all day long. So, that might be why my brain does not see it as, “Oop, calories are coming. We need insulin.” But I know people, even some of the moderators of our Facebook groups are like, “Yeah, I cannot do the vial drops or the peppermint oil.” It makes them shaky and so that's the sign that they've had an insulin response. That's why I consider peppermint oil to be in the gray area, as far as that goes.

Melanie Avalon: So, it's a case really of do you see how you respond to it? I will say just a little quick toothpaste PSA. Fun fact that might blow your mind if you didn't know it. Our teeth are actually-- I think, they're the only part of our body, that might not be exactly true, but I'm pretty sure they're the only, if not the only part of our body that in order to get their nutrition requires direct contact. So, you know how the rest of our body nutrients are delivered, they're processed by the body and they're delivered through the bloodstream and that's how it all goes down? That includes our bones. Our teeth, nothing gets delivered to the teeth through any bloodstream or pathway or highway. So, it's what you've literally directly put on your teeth. So, you want to make sure that your toothpaste in particular is something that is rich and mineralizing ingredients, so that it will support the health of your teeth. Isn't that so interesting?

Gin Stephens: That is interesting.

Melanie Avalon: That's like a fun fact that stuck with me for life. I was like, “Wow.” So, I guess that means that I wonder if the implications of that maybe that might mean that if you can eat a super high calcium teeth-supportive diet, but if you just shoveled it directly into your gut without going through your mouth your teeth might not actually be nourished from it, so fascinating.

Gin Stephens: I talk about this in Fast. Feast. Repeat. Lauren, if you have that book, it is on page 55, so you can turn there and look. I actually want you to use whatever toothpaste you want. Whatever it is, I don't want you to overthink the toothpaste or your morning dental routine and feel like you have to use baking soda with the salty flavor because here's why. We have a cephalic phase insulin response. Let's say your toothpaste-- if your brain did say, “Ooh, here's this sweetness coming in.” It happens within like two minutes, and then the insulin peaks at four minutes and returns to baseline between 8 to 10 minutes. So, that's going to be a really small spike. It's not going to be something that is going to last for hours. That's just something important to know. You brush your teeth, you go about your day, I would not recommend brushing your teeth every 10 minutes because that's going to be up and up and up and up. That's also why I think of gum and sodas and things like that is different because you don't just chew gum and then move about your day. It's something that continues and goes on and on and on. And back when I was a gum chewer, I was popping piece after piece after piece. So, it was pretty much continual. With your toothpaste, you're not continually doing it.

So, duration is important. I really encourage people to not stress too much about toothpaste. Use the kind that fits in with your philosophies, and if that's Colgate, then use Colgate. If that's the one you'd like to use, use it. If you want to make a homemade toothpaste with baking soda and peppermint oil? I don't know if that's what a dentist would recommend or not, I'm not really sure what they think about brushing with just baking soda. So, I'm not going to say to do that, because they might be like, “Oh, no, please don't do that.” I don't really know. Ask your dentist.

Melanie Avalon: To that point, the homemade one.

Gin Stephens: That might be a really bad idea. I just don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm a fan of homemade, but like I said, with the direct contact, you would probably want it to include things like their calcium powders and things like that, so that you're still getting that mineralization benefits. And I'm glad you brought up the insulin phase response. I know we've talked about that before on this show, but that was personally a big epiphany moment for me, what Gin just mentioned. Because basically, your pancreas has a little bit of insulin armed and ready to go. It's like a little bit, and it's what's released when you first taste something. It's what Gin just said. When you continue to eat and bring it in, then the pancreas once it loses that first little bit that it has primed and ready, it starts creating more, and that's what we don't want to happen, which would happen with eating or like Gin said, if you're continually having that flavor still coming in.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Now, I will say this also, if you notice every day after you brush your teeth, you get shaky like your blood sugar has crashed, maybe try a different brand or a different flavor. Switch from peppermint to a different-- I'm not going to say there's no time that toothpaste might be a problem for somebody. The issue is, if it makes you feel shaky, like your blood sugar is crashing, then you can experiment with different options. That's the only time I want you to worry about it.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode176. Feel like we talked a lot about a lot of stuff on this show. So, definitely check that out for all of the links to everything.

You can submit your own questions to the show. Just directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. You can follow me, I'm @melanieavalon. You can follow Gin, she's @ginstephens. And I think that's it, I guess. Anything else from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: Nope. I think that's it.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, talk to you next week. Bye.

Gin Stephens: Bye.

Melanie Avalon: Thank you so much for listening to The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember that everything discussed on the show is not medical advice. We're not doctors. You can also check out our other podcast, Intermittent Fasting Stories, and the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. The music was composed by Leland Cox.

See you next week.


Check out the Stuff We Like page for links to any of the books/supplements/products etc. mentioned on the podcast that we like!

More on Gin: GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

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