Welcome to Episode 207 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.
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27:45 - Listener Q&A: Jamie - Whoosh
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55:00 - Listener Q&A: Elizabeth - Starting IF After HCG
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Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 207 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.
Hi friends, Gin and I talk about the importance of gut health all the time on this show. You guys know we are obsessed with the gut microbiome. There's also a lot of confusion out there surrounding probiotics. There are so many different probiotics. It can be so hard to know what to take. I personally have actually experimented with a lot of probiotics over the years. A lot. You guys know me. Did you know there's only one probiotic that I have consistently taken almost every single day, since I found it? It's a nonnegotiable. I see, such radical improvements in my gut health, when I take this probiotic, and it's not just me, you guys, and my audience tell me all the time about how you feel this way as well. That is P3-OM. What is P3-OM? It's a patented probiotic that actually eats up excess sugar, eliminates bad bacteria fast, and protects your gut from inflammation and viruses. What initially made me so intrigued by this probiotic is that it is proteolytic meaning it can actually digest protein. I even saw a video on the BiOptimizers website of the probiotic digesting a steak. Yes, a steak.
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Are you concerned about aging? Well, thankfully, fasting is super incredible for its anti-aging benefits. It activates genes in your body called sirtuins, which repair your body and help extend lifespan. Also, during the fast, your body can clean up a lot of harmful chemicals which may be taxing your detoxification systems. In fact, the reason people go gray is because their detox systems start producing a lot of hydrogen peroxide when dealing with toxins. Do you know where a lot of those chemicals come from? Your skincare and makeup. As it turns out, there are thousands of compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup that Europe has banned due to their toxic nature and the US has banned less than 10. When you put these on your skin every single day through your skincare and makeup, you're adding to your body's burden and likely aging your skin faster.
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Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 207 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: I am worn out. I am riding high on a bunch of emotions, good emotions, scary emotions, all sorts of emotions.
Melanie Avalon: That's good.
Gin Stephens: [laughs] Do you want me to elaborate a little bit?
Melanie Avalon: Yes, would you like to elaborate?
Gin Stephens: Well, we're recording this in mid-March. Yesterday, I finally announced to the public in the advanced group on Facebook, the project that I’m working on since the beginning of the year, and that was, I have launched Delay, Don’t Deny social network off of Facebook. It's a membership-based platform. Yes, members do need to pay to join. It's $4.99 a month. If you, what's the word, amortize your membership, it's $59.95 a year, and you join and that works out to $4.99 a month, if you join for the year as a founding member. Yes, it's a membership site. Now, we're all together, I have all the spinoff groups going on. It's hard to explain. I was letting people start spinoff groups. We had one spinoff group over there, and another spin off group over there, and I felt like I was losing touch with the community. Does that make sense?
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.
Gin Stephens: I didn't have time to manage-- Facebook takes a lot to manage groups. You have membership requests, you have posts to approve, you have people coming in, they don't know who you are, why they're there. It takes a lot of work to manage it. We've got over 100 groups on the new platform. The address is dddsocialnetwork.com. DDD for Delay, Don’t-Deny. dddsocialnetwork.com. Like I said, we have over 100 groups, and they're not all intermittent fasting. We've got groups for different fasting styles, one meal a day, alternate daily fasting, the hybrid approach, but we also have a paleo group, Melanie. We have a vegetarian group. No matter how anybody eats, we've got a group for it. We've got hobbies, we've got different exercise styles. We've got a group for people who are interested in starting podcasts and writers, because a lot of people in my community have started podcasts and written books, which is one of the things, I’m a teacher, nothing makes me prouder than seeing other people create content. Does that make sense? Like inspired, they're like, “Well, Gin did a podcast, I can do a podcast,” or, “Gin wrote a book and self-published it. Melanie wrote a book and self-published it, and I can do that too.”
I feel like in a way the Delay, Don’t Deny community has been an incubator for some of these amazing people that I've connected with in the groups. Graeme Currie, he's got a great podcast called The Fasting Highway, and he started off just in my group. He's written a book. He's from Australia. We'll have a group for people who want to do stuff like that, so they can connect and talk about platforms and the process. We even have a group about dogs and cats if you're a pet lover. [laughs] The tag line is we want to be your favorite social network, because we really do. We were on Facebook, we've been on it for so long, but it's gotten a little harder to navigate, and the artificial intelligence has gotten a little weird lately. Like over Christmas in the Life Lessons group, we had some weird, we got something that Facebook was like, “This post does not-- it goes against community standards. Please review it.” I’m like, “Oh, my God, that sounds so scary.” I went to review it, it was covered up with a mask and how Facebook will cover something. Have you ever seen that?
Melanie Avalon: No.
Gin Stephens: Well, if they think it might be questionable, they're like, “Click on it on your own risk.” I’m like, “What was someone trying to post?” I clicked on it to see what it was that was so questionable and objectionable. It was a Christmas bow tutorial.
Melanie Avalon: That’s strange.
Gin Stephens: The artificial intelligence called it drug paraphernalia, but it was bows made of raffia. The artificial intelligence is also picking up on certain words as hate speech and bullying, like one of the moderators got put in Facebook Jail for clicking on something incorrectly, and then she said, “Oops, I apologize. I must have fat thumbs.” They put on Facebook Jail and said it was hate speech. Clearly, it wasn't, fat thumbs is a saying.
Melanie Avalon: I didn't know there was a Facebook Jail.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I've been In Facebook Jail before. I liked too many things too quickly?
Melanie Avalon: Okay, yes.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, the artificial intelligence--
Melanie Avalon: I've commented too much before.
Gin Stephens: Yes, the artificial intelligence looks for people who are doing things too rapidly. You have to take things slowly on Facebook. So, ever since then if I'd make a post and 100 people comment, I just want to go like, like, like, like, like, no, you cannot do that. I lost the ability to post for 24 hours, when I was in Facebook Jail that time. [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: It's weird when it happens in your own group, like it's your group, because it's done that to me, I’m like, “Wait, but this is my group. I should be able to post whenever I want.”
Gin Stephens: You can't though. It's just a million little things like that. You hear stories. My friend Sheri that does the Life Lessons podcast with me. She has a friend, who was running a cooking group. It had like 10,000 members, was a cooking group. She woke up one morning, and her cooking group had been removed from Facebook, and she had been blocked from Facebook, like her account was deactivated, based on something that had happened in the cooking group overnight. I realized that we're at the whim of a platform. Now, I’m not knocking Facebook, because we have enjoyed being there for years and it has helped us grow this wonderful community. I will always have love for that platform, and what it allowed us to build. But at the same time, that terrified me that, I have that one group, the 300,000 plus member group that if something went really terribly wrong-
Melanie Avalon: Right, it could just disappear.
Gin Stephens: -it could disappear and I wouldn't be able to contact those 300,000 people at all. I don't have their email addresses, I don't know, would they ever find me again? I don't know. I’m one of those worst-case scenario people, like what could go wrong, always think about that. I’m like. “I don't want to lose this community that I've built.” We started the new platform, launched it yesterday-- Yeah, there's been some positives and some growing pains with it, not everyone was thrilled that I was starting a membership site, because people say-- well, rightly so, intermittent fasting is free and intermittent fasting continues to be free. However, starting a paid platform is very, very expensive, and Facebook is free, but why is it free?
Melanie Avalon: Ads.
Gin Stephens: It's got ads, they're selling you data, you're the product honestly. If you're on Facebook, you're the product and I’ve been okay with that for myself personally for all these years knowing that Facebook was looking at my data, and whatever, showing me ads, I lived with that for the free platform. But for me to have a platform, it is most certainly not free, because I’m not going to be selling your data and showing you ads, and there's a lot of costs involved in it, so it has to be paid. Anyway, I’m sad about any pushback, because I just made this fabulous community and I want everyone to be like, “Oh my God, I love it.” [laughs] So far, positive people are in there. We've got almost 1000 members on day two. It's just so exciting watching people find their community. Also, some of people that I know that had left Facebook for whatever reason, one of my trusted moderators who I love so much, he's a comedian, people may remember him, John McDonald from the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast. He left Facebook completely for personal reasons with his family, but he's joined the new platform. It's so good to reconnect with people that I had lost touch with, it feels amazing.
Melanie Avalon: I made a profile. I’m going to come in.
Gin Stephens: Well, people are waiting for you, because we made a Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast group.
Melanie Avalon: Group.
Gin Stephens: Yes. There's a group that you're in.
Melanie Avalon: Are there people in it?
Gin Stephens: Yeah, you want to know how many members are in, I can tell you right now.
Melanie Avalon: How many?
Gin Stephens: How many people have joined it? Hold on, I got to pull up the-- We're also going to have an app. The app is not out yet. Right now, I'm on my iPhone looking at it. Let's see Melanie. but right now, it's pretty easy to use in mobile on the iPhone. Melanie Avalon, you've got 63 members.
Melanie Avalon: Oh. Okay, now I am very much alert. I mean I was already alert, but let me go see.
Gin Stephens: Let’s see how many are on the Intermittent-- we have an Intermittent Fasting podcast group. Let me search for that one. Anyway, what I’m saying is, I’m certain that we probably have listeners, who are not on Facebook for whatever reason. Not everybody's on Facebook. My sister for example never joined Facebook ever, like ever, in her whole entire life never joined Facebook. From day one, she's like, “For some reason, I don't like that,” so she didn't join. People, that just never joined or didn't want to, we have a place for you now. We have 77 members right now in the Intermittent Fasting Podcast group. We can all get together there, and we also have something called the Podcast Enthusiasts Lounge, where you can go and talk about any podcast you want. If you say, “Oops, fat thumbs, I didn't mean to click that,” we don't even care. If you like things really quickly, go for it, like them as fast as you want.
Melanie Avalon: It's very exciting. Congratulations.
Gin Stephens: It is very exciting. Thank you. I didn't sleep last night, I tossed and turned, I thought, “Have I ruined-- Did I mess up? Is this wrong?” Like I said, I’m very much a people pleaser. I want to do things that make people happy. I’m like, “Look what I created for you. Aren't y'all excited?” “No, no, we're not excited. We hate it. Don't create this thing.” Anyway, ah, now I can take a breath, and the people that are there are very happy to be there, and the people who don't want to join, don't have to join. That's the thing,
Melanie Avalon: Listeners, friends, you can all join, we can put links to it in the show notes. That's very exciting.
Gin Stephens: That'd be awesome. dddsocialnetwork.com. It is very exciting.
Melanie Avalon: I can't even imagine, the logistics and everything that you have to go through to do that, so it's very exciting.
Gin Stephens: Well, setting up those groups was a lot. We thought about what would someone want? What could people want? We actually had a little survey and like, “If you were wanting to join a group, what would you want it to be?” I didn't tell anybody what it was. We got the ideas from members, and then we thought of more just on our own. We've got about 55 moderators/facilitators in there, plus a whole lot of members growing by the minute. I’m just very excited, because I love community. That's really it. The whole reason I started this with my first Facebook group back in 2015, before I'd even written a book, I didn't have a master plan, I’m going to write books, I’m going to have podcasts. No. I started a community, and that was the whole point of it. That's what I’m doing here. Everybody, you're welcome to join my community, I'd love to have you or don't join the community. Intermittent Fasting is still free. If you want to be with us on the platform, join us. I’m not closing down the Facebook groups, though I am going to be very busy with the new platform. The Facebook groups are still going. If you're a member, I’m not going to lock you out. [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I was going to ask you that if you're keeping--
Gin Stephens: I might not answer all as much, because I’m going to be on this new place, because these people have joined and I can just take a deep breath, I don't have to approve posts, I don't have to approve members. You just join, there you are, you can do what you want, you can come and go. You can join 100 groups if you want to.
Melanie Avalon: That's exciting.
Gin Stephens: It is very exciting. You don't have to see what you don't want to see. In the advanced group, we've been talking a lot about Zoe, the Zoe app with the personalized nutrition and the gut microbiome testing and the CGM. Some people don't want to see that. They're like, “I’m really frustrated seeing all this talk about Zoe, because I just want to keep it simple.” Well, now you don't have to see it. You don't go to the Zoe group, but we have a Zoe group for people who do.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that makes sense.
Gin Stephens: It does. I think it's nice. I’m so excited. Scared, yes, and excited. All the feels. I have all the feels. I have cried, I have laughed, I have cheered. I didn't sleep at all last night.
Melanie Avalon: Another reason, you know what happened last night?
Gin Stephens: The time change?
Melanie Avalon: Yes. That's when you realize you really are a night person. When you don't know the time change is going to happen, and then you get really confused, because all of a sudden, I was like, “Wow, that hour went by so fast.”
Gin Stephens: Oh, because you were awake?
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I looked at the clock and it was 3:00, I was like, “What happened?” [laughs] Yeah, not a fan.
Gin Stephens: I really tossed and turn, because I started having doubts. Do you ever do that? Do you have doubts? I’m like lying on the bed, we had 400 and something members join yesterday, and I was having these doubts. I was like, “What have I done? What if everyone hates it? What if no one is there?” Anyway, but I woke up today, got refreshed, and I started reading what people had been posting, and seeing how they were joining the groups, and everyone was excited, and then people were coming in that I hadn't seen in a long time. It felt like a big party, that I’m like, “Okay, now I can relax,” except I had this book deadline. Why did I do this at the same time that I have a book deadline? I don't know, I might be crazy.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I have no comment. That was some [laughs] interesting choice of timing.
Gin Stephens: Well, all of a sudden, I had that thought in my head that something could happen to my group. I was panicked. I was like, “I got to protect these groups,” so that move to the front burner. Honestly, I really was like, “I've got to do this now,” because it's too late. If I don't, and then something happened, something's probably not going to happen. I know that it probably won't, but it could. Did you know they shut down a bunch of essential oil groups?
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.
Gin Stephens: Like all in one fell swoop. One of my members was telling me about it. When somebody like, “Nobody's shutting down groups, unless they're bad, dangerous groups.” This girl was like, “Well, I was on a bunch of essential oil groups, and they all got shut down because Facebook decided essential oils were dangerous,” and maybe they are, if you use them incorrectly, but isn't fasting, kind of like that, too? Couldn't fasting be dangerous if you use it incorrectly?
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.
Gin Stephens: The answer is yes. Google restricts what it shows you now when you search, it has chosen which health people they're going to show you in, which health people they're not going to show you based on certain criteria. I felt like we might have a tenuous existence on a platform, that we couldn't 100% count on tomorrow, I’m going to wake up and my groups are going to be there. I’m 99.99% sure tomorrow I’m going to wake up and my groups will be there. But once I had in my mind that maybe they wouldn't be, I’m sure the essential oil people didn't know they were all going to be gone. It's almost like I wish they had told them, “Hey, we're going to remove your groups and one month, you have one month to figure something else out,” that would have been a good thing. I would have-- if only.
Melanie Avalon: Actually, that reminds me of a fun little fact I learned by listening to a podcast.
Gin Stephens: What is that?
Melanie Avalon: Do you know what the difference is between fear and anxiety?
Gin Stephens: Well, no.
Melanie Avalon: As it relates to this conversation?
Gin Stephens: I can't wait to hear though, because I think I have felt fear and anxiety.
Melanie Avalon: Fear is when you are aware of something bad happening, and you have the fear response. Anxiety is not knowing what is going to happen, and having the response, but then it's like, chronic, because--
Gin Stephens: I did have both.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah.
Gin Stephens: I had fear because I saw people who were not happy with me. They were not happy that I would do this, and that really hurt my feelings, because I’m like, “Look, number one, it came from the place of, I don't want to lose our community, how am I going to keep that from happening, just in case,” but nobody's making anybody join it. I didn't click archive group on Facebook nearby, come over here. Didn't close the group. My wording may be when I announced it, gave people some things to worry about, because I said, “We're not sure the future of how these groups are going to work on Facebook,” because clearly, I’m one person. I can't be here and there and everywhere all over the place. [laughs] Sometimes, I have to eat, and sleep, and take a shower. We're not closing the groups down, but, yeah, I had fear from backlash, like I made a huge mistake. But then, I saw the love. There was so much love. This morning, I woke up to so much love and there's so much positivity surrounding the new community that I can just let the rest go. The fear is gone. I still have some anxiety, but no more fear.
Melanie Avalon: That is fabulous.
Gin Stephens: Yes. Anything new with you? I’m sorry. I just rambled for 18 minutes, but-- [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: The only thing is I never travel ever, and I travelled somewhere, and I lost my Oura ring.
Gin Stephens: Oh, no.
Melanie Avalon: I’m so sad. I'm so sad. I did something that I never do, because I don't-- We talked about this. You like jewelry, right?
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I wear earrings every day, and I have on my wedding ring every day.
Melanie Avalon: Yes, I don't ever really wear jewelry. They have an Oura ring that has diamonds in it. I was like, “If I’m going to get one piece of nice jewelry that I wear every day of my life,” so I upgraded, and I got that.
Gin Stephens: Oh, no, and you lost it.
Melanie Avalon: No, I didn't lose that one. I lost the one I had. I decided to buy a new one, because--
Gin Stephens: I thought you upgraded to the really expensive one and then lost it.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, no, no, no, no, no. Oh, I would be crushed.
Gin Stephens: That's what I thought you did.
Melanie Avalon: They're already pretty expensive normally, but yes. I think listeners think we get all the things for free all the time, but we don't. I have to purchase things. But that's how much I love it. I was like, it's not a question I’m buying a new one right now, and then I realized, I really want the one with the diamonds. I learned don't wear it on your ring finger, because then you look married or it looks like a wedding ring.
Gin Stephens: I probably would agree with that. I mean, unless who cares? Why do you care if people think you're married, right? That could be a plus.
Melanie Avalon: True.
Gin Stephens: Keep in mind. I've been wearing a ring on my wedding ring finger since I was 21. It's been a long time. 30 years I've had this ring on my finger.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. It's ironic. I lost it, and I actually interviewed the CEO, again for Part Two episode a few days later. I’m airing it very soon, because I wanted it to be timely. If listeners are interested in Oura ring and learning more, I'll put a link in the show notes to that second interview that I just did with him.
Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. Today, I want to tell you about Prep Dish’s New Super Fast Menus. These are in addition to their three existing meal plans, keto, paleo, and gluten free. Instead of scrambling and spending every single night prepping meals, do all of your prep at once, and under one hour. You'll get delicious healthy meals on the table, even when you have limited time. If you've been a longtime listener, you know we're huge fans of Prep Dish. No more scrambling at each meal. Instead go into mealtime with a plan, like Melanie would say, “You've got this.”
Prep Dish subscribers now get four menus every week. Gluten free, paleo, low carb keto, and the new Superfast menus. Now, you can prep a whole week's meals in just an hour. You don't have to choose between meal prep and spending precious time with your family. With Prep Dish’s new Super Fast Menus, you get fast food, but it's homemade and healthy. If you've thought about trying Prep Dish but worried you wouldn't have time to do the prep, now is a great time to check out the free trial. The founder, Allison, is offering listeners a free two-week trial, and you can get that by going to prepdish.com/ifpodcast for this amazing deal. Again, that's prepdish.com/ifpodcast, and your first two weeks are absolutely free. Try it out, see what you think about the new Super Fast Menus, and then send us an email. Let us know, how you like it.
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Melanie Avalon: Shall we jump into everything fasting related?
Gin Stephens: Yes.
Melanie Avalon: To start things off, we have a question from Jamie. The subject is “Whoosh.” Jamie says, “When on average does someone, women get the whoosh effect, losing a bunch of weight at once, two weeks in and I've only lost one pound, where my husband has lost 17 pounds.”
Gin Stephens: All right. That's a great question. First of all, let's talk about what is the whoosh? We've talked about it before, but I want to talk about it again. The whoosh effect is when-- let's think about in our bodies biologically, we lose fat at a pretty slow rate, even if you're doing a complete fast, or you're eating nothing, your body probably is only going to lose about half a pound of fat a day max really for fat burning. Keep that in mind. That's like we're not usually losing about half a pound of fat a day with doing an intermittent fasting lifestyle. Let's say, you get on the scale and you don't see your weight change, you don't see your weight change, you don't see your weight change, you don't see your weight change, and then you get on one day and it's down five pounds. Did you just lose five pounds of fat overnight? No, you did not. You had a whoosh.
You had lost fat slowly, but something was hiding that fat loss. We were pretty sure that your body does something with water during the fat loss process, but not everybody has the same experience. Some people never whoosh. They just have a slow and steady down, down, down over time. They have this nice little graph, they're pretty linearly down. Most people don't, but some people do. Whereas someone who whooshes might look more like a stair step, where you have it's just the same, the same, the same, the same and then down. Then the same, the same, and same and then down, like that. I mean, you might zigzag up and down. I tended to have the pattern where I would go way down, and then I would go back up a little and stay there for a while, then I would go way down, then I would go up a little. Mine’s like the stock market's going down a little bit. Why does this happen?
As I said, we have the theory that it's something to do with water balance, because people will notice, maybe they have to get up in the middle the night to go to the bathroom a lot, and then the next morning they're lower. The water is coming from somewhere. There's one theory that I don't think is true, and that theory is that the body is actually putting water in your fat cells. I haven't been able to find any scientific basis for that, and I've heard scientists who are smarter about the body than me saying, “No, that's not what's happening.” Could they be wrong? Could that be what's happening? I don't know.
Melanie Avalon: One of the ones that sounded plausible to me was I think the glycerol. One thing I was reading online, his theory was that fat when we break it down, it breaks it down into glycerol. Is it fatty acids and glycerol? I think so. He says it takes a while for the body to process glycerol and glycerol attracts water.
Gin Stephens: Oh, that makes sense.
Melanie Avalon: It's like you burning the fat, you burn the fatty acid part of the fat-- and I might be wrong with a fatty acid is the other component, I think it is. Then the glycerol takes backlogs and as we process, in the meantime, it's stored with water or attracts water.
Gin Stephens: It's not happening in the fat cell, right?
Melanie Avalon: I’m not sure where the glycerol is?
Gin Stephens: Something's happening with water, we know that. [chuckles] It's somewhere. I also have talked about it before here, I have a hunch. It could be in your lymphatic system, which is the body's sewage system, because as you're clearing out a fat cell, fats not the only stuff that's in there, you've also got a lot of toxins and weird stuff that your body shoved in there. You shove junk under your bed, your body shoves junk into your fat cells when it doesn't know what else to do with it. Toxins do come out, and your body has all that going around in your lymphatic system, and then it can flush it out all at once. You may have puffy fingers, we've all experienced this, puffy ankles, your face might be puffy. That's water retention happening in your tissues, and then whoosh, you wake up and that's gone.
Jamie, not everyone gets a whoosh. Don't expect you're going to get one. But let's address the fact that you're two weeks in and you've only lost one pound. If you think back to the 28-Day FAST Start-- if you read Fast. Feast. Repeat, in the 28-Day FAST Start, I’m very, very emphatic about do not expect any weight loss for the first 28 days, because the first 28 days are the time for your body to adjust to the clean fast, and that's it, your body's not great at tapping into fat stores yet. It may lose a great deal of inflammation, like with your husband with 17 pounds in two weeks. He did not lose 17 pounds of fat in two weeks. I know that we would like to, we don't lose fat that quickly. But even if that's a lot of that's inflammation of water weight, 17 pounds is a lot of mass. Imagine how good it would feel to lose 17 pounds, whatever it is, water weight, inflammation, I know he feels better, but we don't lose fat that quickly.
Just understand that your body is doing what it's doing behind the scenes, and the scale doesn't always reflect that. The scale can go up because of water, it can go down because of water. It can go up if you're gaining fat, but it can go down if you're losing fat, but it can also stay the same while you're losing fat because you're also regaining water. The scale can really just confuse you.
Melanie Avalon: Yes, 100%. Did you read Gary Taubes, The Case for Keto?
Gin Stephens: No, I read Marty Kendall’s critique of it. I really like Marty Kendall. By the way, Marty, we talked about him on the podcast. I think that came out maybe last week, we're recording. It's several weeks ago in podcast world land, but in the real world, it was like last week. Marty listened and he was like, “Oh, thank y’all for talking about me.” Anyway.
Melanie Avalon: On our show?
Gin Stephens: Yeah, when we talked about Marty Kendall and his Optimising Nutrition site, but I read Marty Kendall’s blog post about The Case for Keto.
Melanie Avalon: I finished his book about it. So good. So good. I'm like three fourths of the way through, Gary Taubes.
Gin Stephens: He's coming on your podcast, right?
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. I’m so excited. I want to air them back-to-back, like air Marty's and Gary's. I don't know what order I put them-- I guess it depends how that conversation goes.
Gin Stephens: I’m going to tell you Marty Kendall is brilliant, and you would think by reading-- he has a book called Keto Myths or something. You would think by reading the title of whatever, I can't remember the name of--
Melanie Avalon: Big Fat Keto Lies.
Gin Stephens: Yes, Big Fat Keto Lies, you would think by reading it, he was anti-keto, and he's not. He is busting some keto myths, like if you're having trouble losing fat, eat a lot more fat. He's saying some things that need to be heard in the keto community. I actually think some people are listening. One of the big guys, I can't remember which one of my moderators showed me one of the big keto people, might have been the Diet Doctor guy, the guy who runs Diet Doctor. He was somebody really big, well known. I just can't remember, my brain is full. Made some post, I don’t know if it was a tweet, I don't know where it was, but she showed me a screenshot of it, where he said that, he had lowered his fat intake or something and increased his protein. He was getting leaner than ever, he’d stopped eating so much fat. I’m like, “That's huge.”
Melanie Avalon: I think it's one of the biggest misconceptions. This is something I’m going to ask Gary, this is the question I want to ask him, because it's probably the biggest takeaway I took from Marty. It’s the biggest paradigm shift I had about insulin after reading Marty's book, and now reading Gary's book. He talks about this completely, but he doesn't draw the same conclusion and it's really haunting me, and it's the fact that this has made me completely rethink insulin, its main purpose is not to store fat. Marty talks about this, which I'd never realized before.
Gin Stephens: Well, it's antilipolytic, which means if you have high insulin, you're going to have a hard time burning fat.
Melanie Avalon: Its main purpose is not to store fat. Its main purpose is to stop fat from being released. It's putting on the brakes--
Gin Stephens: To fat release. It's putting the brakes rather than shoving it in. That's a very good point. We read so many times that people are saying insulin is shoving the fat in or shoving sugar in something.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it could because its main purpose-- and this is something that Marty pointed out that I hadn't really thought of. Fat doesn't elicit at all or barely any of an insulin release, and so they reached the conclusion that because it doesn't release insulin that it's not easily stored as fat. What Marty argues is the reason it doesn't release insulin is, because it doesn't need insulin to be stored as fat. It was just the complete opposite idea of what people are drawing the conclusion from. They're saying, “Oh, unlimited fat because it doesn't require insulin.” Right, it doesn't require insulin because it just gets stored without it, which is huge. Basically, insulin’s purpose is to deal with the toxicity of sugar in the bloodstream. If insulin wasn't there, we would just be burning fat and then we'd have an overload of fuel in our bloodstream, and so when we eat carbs, the body needs to burn it immediately, because too much sugar glycates and is toxic. It needs to shut down all other potential sources of fuel going into the bloodstream, which is from our fat cells and from the storage of carbs. Insulin is just closing the doors.
Gin Stephens: The traffic cop saying no.
Melanie Avalon: I've been thinking about it. It's like if you live in an apartment, I've been thinking about this, and the hallway is your bloodstream and then the doors to all the apartments are your fat cells and normally the doors are open and stuff is going in and out of the rooms, but once carbohydrates enter the bloodstream, insulin is like, “Nope, shut all the doors so that nothing else can come out and we can just deal with this these carbs right now.” What I want to ask Gary, and it helps me articulate this, because I've been thinking about this, but I haven't said it out loud and I want to like--
Gin Stephens: Well, it's also very interesting.
Melanie Avalon: The thing that I want to ask him about is, I mean, he gives that length-- It's basically, if anybody's read any of his books--
Gin Stephens: They're long.
Melanie Avalon: [laughs] Like, I said, I went on a trip this week, it was a four-hour drive both ways, I listened to the audiobook as much as I could both ways, and I was like, “I filled my Gary Taubes quota for quite a while.”
Gin Stephens: Does he read it himself?
Melanie Avalon: No, he doesn't. He's an investigative journalist. He's not a scientist. He's rather telling the history of all of these things. He makes a very good point that actual scientists-- and now I’m going on tangents, but scientists and nutritionists and doctors don't normally ever study the history of everything in detail, because they don't have time, they don't think it's relevant, but he's saying that, “You can't really understand a subject until you know the history of how it got there,” so, that's what he's doing. In any case, with the insulin, he [unintelligible [00:38:32] idea that it stops fat cells from releasing their fuel, but he'll also say a lot throughout the book that the misconceptions we have and how we've oversimplified calories in, calories out, and we say it's just about calories and really it's about insulin, it's really complicated, it's really nuanced, but I feel the simplistic statement he still continues to make is that insulin leads to fat storage. I'm not articulating this well. The insulin is required for fat storage, like that idea still comes through.
Gin Stephens: Okay, yeah, insulin is antilipolytic. It's anti-fat burning. If you want to tap into your fat stores, you don't want to have high insulin, but that doesn't mean you're storing, you're just not burning.
Melanie Avalon: I need to relisten or reread one part, because there's one part where he specifically says this, but I don't know if he's saying it or he was quoting somebody else, but it was the theory that you can't store fat in the absence of insulin, which just seems to not be true. The takeaway that I’m having right now is-- I don't even know if this is worth pondering, but, because he's trying to deconstruct the calories in, calories out model, I don't know if you are at a genuine calorie deficit even with high insulin. Do you think you can gain weight? Maybe you can't ever burn weight.
Gin Stephens: If nothing is coming in, what are you storing the fat--? What's it being made of? We don't create fat out of thin air. Our bodies don't just create fat out of thin air, It's something comes in, our bodies do something with it and store that as fat. Maybe it was fat already, and we just shoved it away.
Melanie Avalon: What I’m thinking is it seems like insulin could make it impossible to burn fat, so you could not possibly lose weight at a calorie deficit, because of high insulin. But I don't know if you could gain weight at a calorie deficit and high insulin, because if you are literally taking in less energy than you're burning, I don't know how you can have a net gain, even if-- I don't know.
Gin Stephens: You were talking about based on what the metabolism is doing. You couldn't.
Melanie Avalon: I mean, your metabolism could slow down.
Gin Stephens: Right, but if you're still burning more than that slowed metabolic rate, I don't think it's possible. No, I don't think so, that wouldn't make sense. The one thing to keep in mind though, let’s think thing about type 1 diabetics. Their bodies are not making insulin, they were unable to gain weight at all. Low insulin, because they're not making it, unable to gain weight. See, that's one of the big examples Fung uses, I think I used it, you hear it so much. That's why we know that high insulin is related to storing. It's a storage hormone.
Melanie Avalon: To clarify, it definitely encourages the storage of carbs as glycogen.
Gin Stephens: People who had type 1 diabetes before anybody knew what type 1 diabetes was, they would just waste away and die because they didn't have enough insulin. Because they could not, no matter how much they ate, their bodies couldn't store anything away. So many questions, so many complicated things going on. Here's what we need to know. The takeaway is we want to keep our insulin low. That's good, but also fat is not free.
Melanie Avalon: So far what I've read, that’s his thesis.
Gin Stephens: His takeaway is fat is free?
Melanie Avalon: Well, I haven't gotten to that yet, if he does say that. His takeaway is that-- I really like this idea, that everybody has a personal insulin threshold, and that if you're at that insulin threshold or below it, you'll be able to burn fat, but if you're above it, you won't be able to.
Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, I 100% can buy into that theory, because I don't even know if that's like a-- I think that's true. I don't think it's under question. I think that is a fact. It explains-- I’m sure that I had really high insulin for so many years when I was overweight and having trouble gaining weight, and then, Chad, my husband always been slim, I’m sure he's always had low insulin. We had our insulin tested last year. Mine is low now, thanks to fasting, but Chad's was slow. His was lower than mine. I’m like, “Well, no wonder he never gained weight.” His body just makes less insulin. He's not like diabetic, but his body makes less insulin than me. We all have a different threshold with what our body's going to do based on the amount of insulin we have in our fasted insulin level.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, he talks about while fasted, if you release insulin, and how one person, they can think about something really delicious and yummy, and they don't get ravenously hungry, it doesn't make them-- they can handle it, they don't feel they have to have it and they're not craving and shaky and another person does have that response. He was saying that it's from this cephalic insulin, basically in our brain, and depending on your basal insulin, that may or may not be enough insulin release to put you over your personal insulin threshold. If you're wavering around your personal insulin threshold or if you're already past it, and then you think of something really delicious, then your brain releases cephalic insulin, which is basically some insulin that's primed and ready just to be released, and that might be an--
Gin Stephens: It's anticipating food’s coming in.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. Then it releases that, and then that puts your personal insulin threshold high enough that, it just shuts off the fat cells’ ability to release fat, so then you're not giving any fatty acid fuel. It's really interesting. I’m really excited to interview him.
Gin Stephens: One thing that Marty really helped me understand-- also with Zoe, if I put together Marty and Zoe, it really helps me understand a lot about my body. Marty talks about energy toxicity and having too much energy in your blood, whether it's fat or ketones or glucose. You're having a lot of energy in your bloodstream from any source is not good. I never did feel well when I did keto, that summer of 2014. I felt awful the whole time. I also felt very inflamed and puffy, and I just didn't feel good. Zoe taught me, when I did the study with them, that my body doesn't clear fat quickly. They tell you that if your body doesn't clear fat quickly, then too much fat is inflammatory for your body. I’m like, “Well, that makes perfect sense.” It explains why I didn't feel well when I was doing keto, because I was taking in a whole lot of energy, my body didn't clear it very quickly, and so I’m sure I had a ton of fat circulating in my bloodstream that I was taking in, and I wasn't clearing it. Of course, I also didn't release any fat. I didn't lose any weight. All those butter coffees I was chugging, they were keeping my energy levels topped up in my bloodstream, my body had no need to release any fat.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, wait, speaking of, since we recorded last, I did release that episode with Dave Asprey speaking of butter coffee. Listeners, I’ll put a link to it in the show notes. You can check that out. I think my favorite chart-- because Marty has a lot of really great charts in his book, my favorite one is the one that shows “preferred order of burning different fuels.”
Gin Stephens: By the way, I like Marty so very much that even in the new platform, the DDD Social Network, I have a data-driven fasting group over there. For anybody who's following Marty, because a lot of my people have followed Marty, especially since I interviewed somebody on the podcast that talked about him, and then I interviewed Marty. It hasn't come out yet. A lot of people were like, “Hey, I want to learn about that.” Anyway, so data driven-fasting in the DDD Social Network.
Melanie Avalon: This is not the full chart. The full chart is on a different page. The full chart that I saw included alcohol and ketones, I think the order was-- when alcohol and ketones were included, I think it was alcohol and ketones, and then, which is the order of that the body preferentially burns the fuel substrates in our body. I think it was alcohol and ketones, and then glucose in your blood, and then liver and muscle glycogen. I have to ask him about that, because I don't think muscle glycogen would be right there. I think that's incorrect. Then, free fatty acids in your blood and then body fat. So, body fat is basically at the very, very, very last resort.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, our body doesn't want to dig in. I love Jason Fung’s analogy that it's in the freezer in the basement. I’m not going to go down to that basement freezer unless I have to. That's the body to not wanting to-- but it's there, we can get to it if we have to. We just have to give the right environment for the body to tap into your fat.
Melanie Avalon: 100%.
Gin Stephens: Not as easy as it sounds though. [laughs] Ready for the next one?
Melanie Avalon: Sorry for the tangents. Mm-hmm.
Gin Stephens: No, it was good. I think it's all been very interesting. We have a question from Daniella. The subject is “Collagen/Vitamins.” She says, “When breaking a 19- to 20-hour fast, can I start with my collagen supplement which is powder in water, and gummy vitamins? Please don't judge a grown woman taking gummy vitamins, laugh emoji.” [laughs] I will not. No judging.
Melanie Avalon: Great question, Daniella. The very short and simple answer is yes. The longer answer is, it's a good thing to clarify. I think collagen is something, especially people that are new to fasting, think that it might be something that they can take, while fasting especially, because it's often, “prescribed” to take it the way she's taking it like in water. Collagen is definitely something that’s not fast and friendly. It's a protein, and amino acid, it's going to definitely, definitely break your fast.
Gin Stephens: People like to start in coffee. I don't know why.
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. I think Dave started that.
Gin Stephens: Oh, did he?
Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. I think way back in the day, because I remember reading him writing about it and he was saying for women in particular it was a good thing.
Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know. It's like, “Why’s everybody wanted to put this in their coffee?”
Melanie Avalon: The good thing about collagen though is, it's very nourishing to your gut. It's actually a really wonderful time to take it right when you're breaking your fast, like Daniella is, and then same, it's fine to take the gummy vitamin. I’m not a huge fan of multivitamins in general. I think, it's better to target specific nutrients. There's so much complexities to vitamins that-- it's hard to find a vitamin that you know is actually doing what you want it to be doing, but that aside, it's fine. Yes, Gin, thoughts?
Gin Stephens: Oh, no. I was just thinking, I’m really hungry and I was like, “Why am I so hungry?” Then, I realized it's 3 PM but my body-- Wait, we sprung forward. See, I get so confused with the time change.
Melanie Avalon: Me too.
Gin Stephens: It's only 2 PM to my body. Then why am I so hungry? Okay, sorry. I just got really hungry.
Melanie Avalon: All the emotions, or all of our talk?
Gin Stephens: Maybe, the stress. I also didn't eat a lot yesterday that must be why. My body might need two meals today. I’m just all of a sudden really starving. All that delicious collagen discussion.
Melanie Avalon: Might have been that cephalic insulin response.
Gin Stephens: I don't know, but all of a sudden, I was like, “I need to eat some food right now.” Anyway, I’m going to go eat some eggs on toast, that sounds delicious.
Melanie Avalon: All right. Next question or do you have thoughts about--
Gin Stephens: No, I really think that's it. I don't take collagen. I sometimes wondered if I’m missing out, because so many people take it, but I don't know.
Melanie Avalon: It can do really wonderful things, especially if you are trying to grow your nails and hair, and then heal your gut lining. It can be really great.
Gin Stephens: Well, I’m of the age where collagen production in our skin goes down, and we start to look saggy. I mean, that's just part of the hormonal changes of being in the postmenopausal years. We've all seen those amazing grandmas on the beach rocking their bikinis, but they're all saggy. I’m like, “Okay, I’m going to have to start to get some collagen maybe,” or I'll just embrace the sag, I don't care.
Melanie Avalon: Well, I think the probably the most important thing about collagen is, it's really important the amino acid balance of the meat that we eat. Today, we tend to eat basically muscle meat, so chicken breasts and lean steak, or even fattier steaks, if it's not shank or something like that. Historically, we probably would have been eating more of the whole animal and getting collagen, which is really important for an anti-inflammatory/amino acid ratio, and building your gut like I said.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, it may be time, but I will keep it in my window. I don't know why I just can't think of the idea of powder and water. Can you take it in like a pill? That's what I’m going to look for. I don't know. I don't want to dissolve anything in water.
Melanie Avalon: When I took it, of course, I just would eat it with my food, I thought it tasted really good. It’s really important in my opinion to get grass-fed collagen. We can put the link in the show notes to some brands that I like.
Gin Stephens: I don't know why, I have a mental thing against it, like I feel it's going to be gross. I don't know why.
Melanie Avalon: It's funny. I love the way it tastes, but I’m weird.
Gin Stephens: I did eat bone marrow, when I was in Charleston.
Melanie Avalon: Was it delicious?
Gin Stephens: Oh, my Lord. It was good. It was at this little restaurant on King Street in Charleston. Man, it was good.
Melanie Avalon: It's one of those things where if you haven't tried it, it might sound gross, or it might sound like, why would you want to eat that?
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I was scared of it, but everybody raved about it on all the reviews.
Melanie Avalon: It tastes like heaven.
Gin Stephens: It was so good.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, well, we agree on a food. [laughs] It's hard to describe the taste. It just tastes like-
Gin Stephens: This is some kind of bone marrow pudding. It was like a bread pudding made of bone marrow.
Melanie Avalon: If you go to Whole Foods or something you can get--
Gin Stephens: Can't.
Melanie Avalon: I was going to say, you can get bones or you can get cuts that have the bone in it, like a shank cut and it'll have that marrow and if you cook it like normal, then you could just eat them marrow plain. It just tastes, oh, my goodness, amazing.
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All right, now back to the show. Shall we go on to our next question?
Gin Stephens: Yes.
Melanie Avalon: This comes from Elizabeth, and the subject is “Starting IF After HCG.” Elizabeth says, “I've read both Delay, Don't Deny and Fast. Feast. Repeat. I discovered you while in the midst of a round of HCG. I am sure IF is for me. My HCG ends this week. My question is, do I need to do the follow-up protein diet and reintroduce carbs, before starting IF, or can I go right to IF after my three days after HCG?”
Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's a great question, and I do want to say, I’m really glad, Elizabeth, that you found us even in the middle of HCG, but I do not recommend HCG. I mean, honestly, you didn't know that because you were already doing it before you found us. I’m not saying, you shouldn't have done it, because you can't go back in time. Does that make sense? [laughs] For anyone who has not done HCG, I highly, highly would not recommend that you do it. I certainly tried it back in my diet days. I didn't do the drops, I did the “Go to the doctor, get the prescription, take the injections,” because the theory made so much sense. It was you're going to tap into your fat stores, because you're using this pregnancy hormone, your body thinks you're pregnant, so that it's going to help you tap into your fat stores better and it does something to your hypothalamus. That's the theory. Keep in mind, this was a long time ago that I was doing this. I was desperate to lose the weight. I was obese, so I get it.
Everyone who has tried these things like HCG, I tried them. I've done them. I lost a lot of weight doing it. Then, that was when I really started the diet yo-yo after that. The diet pills really got me, and I got those from my doctor too. The doctor prescribed diet pills, regained the weight, then I did HCG, got that from a doctor, lost a lot of weight, regained the weight, but then I was really like obese and struggling. It's not supposed to damage your metabolism, but I don't agree with that. I don't think that's true. I think that theory, just on my own personal response, I don't think that it's true. I think it tanked my metabolism, because suddenly, I gained way past any setpoint I'd ever had before, and I was over 200 pounds for the first time ever. Before all the crazy diets, I was hanging out around 160s as my upper limit. Then, I did all these crazy diets with the diet pills and the HCG, and then all of a sudden, my setpoint is now 200 or 180, in that range.
It definitely harmed my body long term. Thank goodness, I think intermittent fasting helped me reverse it. If it were me, Elizabeth, if I were finishing HCG right now today, and discovered intermittent fasting in the middle of it, I think I would go straight into the eating window approach, because you've already been eating practically nothing. Gosh, actually see, I don't know, because I’m thinking maybe the alternate-day fasting approach would be a good one for her, because her metabolism is probably slow. So you want to boost it again. I would probably, I don't know, you've already been eating a very tiny amount. Those are down days. I might would do alternate daily fasting. Down day, up day, down day, up day. As far as are you're going to reintroduce carbs, I don't know. The original doctor that created this protocol, Dr. Simeons, did have you restrict carbs, but I don't know that was like the magic. I think that just kept you from “regaining” that water weight because you lose a lot of water when you're doing a really restrictive diet like HCG. Then carbs, you eat carbs, and it causes your body to retain water. It's like rapid weight gain, but really, it's like a lot of water. Restricting the carbs as you ease back into eating would keep that from happening, which is what he wanted you to do.
Then, he wanted you to crash diet if your weight went up, like eat a tomato or something or have a tomato and steak day or some crazy nonsense like that. If your weight went up, you're supposed to have a steak day. Eat tomatoes all day and need a big steak or fast all day and then eat a steak, I can't even remember.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think it's a one meal a day steak.
Gin Stephens: With just a steak.
Melanie Avalon: It's like carnivore one meal a day.
Gin Stephens: Maybe, that could be it. I think that actually is, but that's the super-duper crash diet. I am not judging anybody who does it, because I did it. I’m just going back and giving my back in the past self, giving her a hug.
Melanie Avalon: The interesting thing about HCGs, the macros of it are very similar to protein-sparing modified fast, which Gary actually talks about in his book about basically being the only “crash diet” that actually pretty much consistently always works because I think HCG is, isn't it like 500 calories of basically protein?
Gin Stephens: A day, yep.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah. If it were me, I would probably just jump into IF, but maybe start with a longer eating window and making sure that you're eating a lot.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, maybe so, because I was thinking about that too. I almost went that direction. It's hard to know either way, coming from the perspective of your metabolism slowed after all that crash dieting.
Melanie Avalon: I just feel I need to be saying this more when we're getting questions especially from people who are hungry or trying to boost their metabolism, focusing on protein I think is so, so important. That's another one of the Big Fat Keto Lies that Marty talks about, is people think fat is satiating, protein is the macronutrient that is most satiating. I think focusing on protein can be really, really important for boosting metabolism and for weight loss, because it's the best of both worlds in that regard, and that it fills you up the most of any food, but it's not very likely to be stored as fat like we don't preferentially store protein as fat. Oh, actually, I don't know if it was in Marty's book. I think it was Marty's book. He mentioned a study about whey, and even in a study where they added in excess calories through processed whey protein, excess calories, the participants did not gain weight from it which I actually would have thought maybe they would when it's fat processed.
Gin Stephens: Because it was whey.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, and it's whey, which is very--
Gin Stephens: Dairy droved.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's growth promoting. Protein is a really good macronutrient to focus on if you're trying to lose weight, trying to be full. It's probably why I’ve been eating such a high-- I eat such a high protein diet for so long. But yeah, I will probably just jump into IF with a longer eating window. Especially if you're worried about gaining back a lot of weight after that, that's another reason I would really focus on protein. So, I would encourage you, Elizabeth, not to go crazy, and if you're eating tons of carbs and tons of fat, it's very likely that you might gain back a large part of-- not just water, you might gain back in fat a large part of what you lost. If you want to maintain whatever you did lose, I would really focus on protein and then looking at your macros.
Gin Stephens: I wouldn't just reintroduce all the things. That's a tricky one.
Melanie Avalon: I know.
Gin Stephens: I’m glad that you found us, Elizabeth, that makes me really-- or Beth. She goes by Beth. I’m glad you found us, Beth, and don't be scared if your weight goes back up a little bit, don't blame the intermittent fasting. Blame the HCG and know that it's going to go back up a little bit, and then it might take a little while longer for you to actually start burning fat well and start really losing more weight, just because your body's got to learn to trust you again. You definitely don't want to do intermittent fasting in a way that's also overly restrictive. That won't be helpful. Can I get something off my chest real quick?
Melanie Avalon: Sure.
Gin Stephens: I’m so frustrated by the whole women shouldn't do intermittent fasting at certain times of the month or we’re too fragile a flower to do intermittent fasting. That is really becoming more and more out there as just common knowledge, but I don't think it's true. I think women should not be overly restrictive with their diet. The fact that all of a sudden, we're like, “Well that means intermittent fasting is out,” intermittent fasting that is overly restrictive is the problem, but that doesn't mean no woman should ever do intermittent fasting during our cycles. I don't know. Maybe they haven't eaten with me. I eat a lot of food. [laughs] Nobody's telling those women not to do a 1200 calorie a day diet. That's overly restrictive, a traditional diet.
Melanie Avalon: I agree as well. I was also just thinking one of the other things people say. People say it's too hard for women especially to eat enough protein. I was just thinking about. It's probably really hard if you're not focusing on protein and so you're eating a lot of fat with it, or a lot of-- carbs might make it easier to a lot protein, but I think people focus so much on fat a lot of the times that that would make it harder to eat a lot of protein.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, just over-restriction is really hard on a woman's body. Over-restriction is hard on our body. But to then say, “Well, then women shouldn't fast certain times of the month,” I don't buy that argument. Even though some really well-known voices that I respect are starting to say that more it's common knowledge, I disagree. Anyway.
Melanie Avalon: I don't feel good when I’m not doing my fasting. This is me personally. I don't feel it helps my hormones. I feel much better hormonally during my fasting window, like hands down. But everybody's individual, that said, I do think there might be some women who do better with--
Gin Stephens: Yep. Particularly if they struggle with eating sufficiently, because they've trained themselves to be a dieter for example, and they're a restrained eater. If someone eats like a bird, tiny little amounts of it, maybe they just naturally can't eat a lot at one time. Okay, then they might need a longer window. It's not the fasting that's the problem, it's the fact that you can't eat enough food within your eating window, like that person shouldn't then try to do one meal a day in a one-hour window. I wouldn't recommend that. If you're eating this tiny little amount of food, that's not good for you, it's over-restriction. We don't want to over-restrict our bodies, women.
Melanie Avalon: Exactly.
Gin Stephens: But that doesn't mean that fasting is over-restriction. That's the part that I keep getting frustrated about. Assuming that fasting means over-restricting, and it does not to me.
Melanie Avalon: They're not synonyms.
Gin Stephens: Right.
Melanie Avalon: They are often posited as such.
Gin Stephens: Well, they are. There's this whole complicated graphic that people are now sharing that came from somewhere, and I know where it came from, not going to say, but it's like, “Here's how you fast every week of your cycle.” I’m like, “No, you might have a hungrier day. Listen to your body, do it.”
Melanie Avalon: That sounds really complicated.
Gin Stephens: It does. I don't know that there's solid science of why you would do that. Other than, yeah, your body might need more nutrients at a certain time of your cycle. My body was always good at telling me that, I can remember-- back earlier and before I got on this side of menopause, I remember, when I was doing intermittent fasting and losing weight, there'd be a day and I'd be like, “Oh my God, I’m so hungry today. What's wrong? I just ate and ate and ate and ate and ate and why am I so hungry and then?” Then, boom, the next day, I would have the reason why I would know. Every time it was a mystery. [laughs] Every month, I was surprised that I was so hungry. My body really communicated that well to me and I listened. I didn't try to diet through it. I didn't punish myself.
Melanie Avalon: You still ate what you wanted.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, I ate more. My body pretty much commanded me to. I've always had a hard time-- Even though I did those crazy restrictive diets, they weren't easy for me. When I’m hungry, I want to eat. My body's like, “Eat.” I’m like, “Okay.”
Melanie Avalon: Me too. [laughs] That's why we're both here.
Gin Stephens: I think so.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah.
Gin Stephens: Gin can eat, y'all.
Melanie Avalon: So can Melanie, so much. I've already said this. It's a dead horse, but the amount of protein I eat every day is, I mean, it's pounds.
Gin Stephens: That's so funny, not me. Nope, not pounds of protein.
Melanie Avalon: It's so good. [laughs] Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions to the show, you can directly email email@example.com, or you can go to ifpodcast.com, and you can submit questions there. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode207. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike. You can follow us on Instagram. My Instagram is-- Gin, it's going really well-
Gin Stephens: Oh, good.
Melanie Avalon: -recently. Follow us. How's your Instagram?
Gin Stephens: I've decided I’m just going to live my life on Instagram. I’m just going to be Gin Stephens’ person on Instagram. If you want to come to Instagram and see what Gin Stephens’ person is doing, I don't need to be Gin Stephens. Argh. [laughs] I've just feeling very much like I just want to get back to basics. Maybe that's why I’m doing this new web platform. Just because I’m like-- I don't want to be, “Here's my dinner. Woo.” Maybe, “Here I am, everybody, come sit by me.”
Melanie Avalon: I think I really like Instagram-- well, besides the fact that selfies really stress me out, I like it, because I really like creating-- my background is film and theater, so I love creating visual content. It's combines my love for visual content with words because you-- I never thought about this until right now. You write as well, so I think that's me probably why I really like it. It's like creating little artwork.
Gin Stephens: Not me. I’m like, “Here's my backyard remodel.” Did you see that picture?
Melanie Avalon: I did. No, okay, I saw it really briefly, and I just saw wreckage and I was like, “Oh my gosh, was there is--" no, I was like, “Was there a storm in Augusta, is her house gone?”
Gin Stephens: Can I just tell you how crazy I am right now? I’m going through so many things, the book, and the website launch, and also our backyard remodel that we tried to start in the fall, but we're demoing everything. Well, it's halfway done, but the wood was rotten on the decks that were on the back, plus there was an arbor, all rotten, all needed to go. We knew it needed to be replaced when we bought the house. We got a great deal on this house, it needed some work. The pool though, huge pool from the 80s, it's full of cracks, a tree fell in it in 2014. They had an ice storm. Well, we had ice storm, and it cracked the pool, and so we were going to have to put all this money into fixing it. They're going to dig it all up. All that concrete is cracked, it has to go. The whole surround. So, I have a bobcat, one of those digger things, is in my front yard right now and they have to get it into the backyard. They're going to take down a fence. I think they start doing that tomorrow. They're going to start digging up all that-- it’s a 10-foot-deep pool.
Melanie Avalon: That's intense.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, fixing it was going to cost more than just digging it up. That sounds crazy, but we're starting over, we're going to put in a screened porch, because I really missed having the screen porch. We're putting in a small pool, like a dunk pool.
Melanie Avalon: You have a real bobcat in the picture. Does Ellie not have a tail?
Gin Stephens: That's Ellie. You remember she got hit by the car, and then her tail had to be amputated. She's just my little cutie, but, yeah, in that picture, she's got a face on it, doesn’t she? She's got some attitude. I love that cat.
Melanie Avalon: It's really funny. I’m looking at it right now.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, anyway, that's what I’m going to put on Instagram. I’m not going to try to influence you at all. I am not an influencer. I’m an anti-influencer.
Melanie Avalon: I’m an anti-influencer, who became an influencer. I give away a lot of free stuff.
Gin Stephens: Oh, I’m not anti-influencers. Let me just say that. I am an anti-influencer, but I’m not anti-influencers.
Melanie Avalon: Yes, exactly.
Gin Stephens: I’m just the anti-influencer. I’m not giving you anything. I’m not giving anything away.
Melanie Avalon: I give away a lot of stuff, listeners, so follow me. I usually give away every week something.
Gin Stephens: Well, follow me to see a very interesting backyard remodel.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, my gosh.
Gin Stephens: I can't wait though, because I really want to be able to enjoy the yard, and I like to go outside and sit on a screened porch. The mosquitoes here are tragic.
Melanie Avalon: I feel remodeling for you is therapeutic or something. You're always remodeling something.
Gin Stephens: Well, we bought this house that was built in the 80s, and needed to be-- it’s built in 1979, I said that wrong. It was built in 1979. The people who bought it from moved in 1984. The pool was built in the 80s. It just needed some work. When you have a house, there's always something that has to be done.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah.
Gin Stephens: This one needed some stuff. Bathroom, that's all finally done, thank you. The backyard. But it's very stressful.
Melanie Avalon: I can't wait to finally have a house, sometime.
Gin Stephens: I can't wait for it to be done. I told Chad, because I’m so busy. He likes to spend 100 years looking at stuff. “Look, you just pick two things and say which one, this one or that and I'll tell you.”
Melanie Avalon: Oh, so he picks. Okay. Yeah, that's good plan.
Gin Stephens: Well, in this case, I like to pick stuff. I don't have time right now to go to Lowe's, and then Home Depot, and then the other place, and then all the places, then back to Lowe's, because that's the way Chad shops. Sorry. [laughs] I’m like, “Hmm, that one.”
Melanie Avalon: He can do that, and pick two and then you pick one?
Gin Stephens: Yeah.
Melanie Avalon: That works well.
Gin Stephens: I’m very decisive.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah.
Gin Stephens: The one I'd say that one too is always the one we end up going with. Even if we've been to 100 places, we always get back to the one that I liked immediately. [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: Wait, can I share really quick one last thing that relates?
Gin Stephens: Yes.
Melanie Avalon: It goes with being decisive. Listeners, fun fact, if you're trying to throw away things, like clean out your apartment, throw away clothes, but you want to hold on to it for whatever reason, just do it when you're completely sleep deprived. It's like when I got back from the trip, and I was completely sleep deprived, I was like must throw away everything. I throw away so much stuff. That's the key.
Gin Stephens: It feels so good, doesn't it?
Melanie Avalon: That's the key. Next time, you're sleep deprived, which is not a good thing, turn it into a good thing. Use the decision fatigue and the exhaustion to throw away all these things that you were having trouble letting go of, like old clothes and stuff, shoes.
Gin Stephens: Very nice. I need to do that. I've got clothes that are no longer in style. Isn't that amazing? I've been the same weight for so long, that my clothes have gone out of style, that I bought.
Melanie Avalon: I think, I must not buy many clothes. I hold on to my outfits for a long time.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, because you always wear the same thing.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, pretty much during the day.
Gin Stephens: That's funny. Oh, by the way, I didn't tell you this. Today is the day, the day that we're recording this, today is the day that six years ago today I hit my initial goal weight.
Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.
Gin Stephens: Today is the day. March 14th, 2015. I was 75 pounds down.
Melanie Avalon: Happy six-year anniversary.
Gin Stephens: Thank you. I've maintained for six years. Oh, also one more funny story. My Shapa was acting super wacky. I was like my age was going up, I was gray, gray, gray, gray, gray. I’m like, “That's not right.” It did that for three weeks. I changed the batteries. [laughs] It needed the batteries to be changed. People, if your Shapa is acting wacky, change the batteries. Got on it. I was 24 again instead of-- [laughs]
Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow. That's really interesting.
Gin Stephens: It was interesting. No scales, when they lose-- It was also taking it a long time to take a reading. I would stand on it, and it took forever.
Melanie Avalon: I still want to reach out to the founder. Gin, I am so overwhelmed with guests. I have interviews scheduled for episodes airing through November. They're all people I have to read like-- [laughs] people keep coming to me and being like, “Oh, you should have this person on your show.” I’m like, “Nope, [laughs] the door is closed.” Unless you’re a New York Times bestseller, that'll get you in the door.
Gin Stephens: That's nice to be able to have options that people want to come on your show. I know that you're proud of that.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, oh, sorry, yeah, that came off as ungrateful. I’m really grateful for it.
Gin Stephens: It did not come off as ungrateful.
Melanie Avalon: I’m just really overwhelmed when people come to, especially because sometimes, like some well-known people in the biohacking sphere will try to recommend their friends and stuff and, I'm like, “I could circle back in a few months.”
Gin Stephens: That does make it hard. Same with me, I've got so many people that want to come on Intermittent Fasting Stories that I keep pushing them back, and I feel bad because I know they have a good story. I would like to tell it, but there's one a week.
Melanie Avalon: It's hard to know too-- I don't want the content to be too old. It's something I’m trying to figure out right now. At what point is that way too far in advance? Typically, it's books, so the content is pretty relevant.
Gin Stephens: But people want to come on right when it's launched. Yeah.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's hard to know.
Gin Stephens: All right, we’ll come to dddsocialnetwork.com and visit the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast group.
Melanie Avalon: Another social group.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, you're going to love it though.
Melanie Avalon: I know. I will.
Gin Stephens: Everybody there came there specifically because they like the community. That is what is so exciting. It's not like Facebook where people are just there already, and they're like, “Well, I'll come over here if I want to, but I might not like you, and I’m going to tell you.” [laughs] Everybody who's on the DDD Social Network came there on purpose. It is just so exciting to be there with them. I love them all so much. I love the people on Facebook too. Facebook people, do not feel unloved, but sometimes, somebody will wander in that might not be as good of a fit. Anyway, that's all I’m going to say.
Melanie Avalon: I’m really shocked-- this is the last thing, I know we've said that like a million times. I recently started my Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare Facebook group. I’m really shocked. My IF Biohackers Facebook group, which is my main hub, I don't ever get spammers in that group ever, like ever. I don't get people trying to join who are spammers. I don't get spam posts.
Gin Stephens: We get them in the Life Lessons. We do. They try to join.
Melanie Avalon: My Clean Beauty one, like half of the requests are spam requests. I don't know if it has something to do with the keywords like people are searching-- This group has around almost 900 members. Yeah, everyday, half of the requests are spam.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, and it's really hard. I feel like people coming to the DDD Social Network and paying a membership fee are not going to be spammers.
Melanie Avalon: Right, that's going to filter that out.
Gin Stephens: Yeah, so I’m not going to have to worry about that. People would join the regular group before we changed the way it posts now. People would join it, and then they would get a post approved, through post approval. Then they would edit their post to some crazy spam posts, even post approval didn't fix it. It'll be some crazy spam post. They had this order, they would do it and it'd be called it getting pancaked, but we couldn't talk about it because we didn't want to teach people you could edit your posts. Someone would come in and they'd post something. They started copying and pasting old posts. There was one of our Hashimoto’s that they would use. Then we started to recognize them, we’d just block them straight from there, but they would copy this Hashimoto’s post, and then they would change it to, “Today, I’m five years sober.” Which, do you know why they would do that?
Melanie Avalon: No.
Gin Stephens: Because that drives a lot of engagement quickly, because everybody's like, “Oh, my God, congratulations. Thank you for sharing that. I support you.” Then they would have a million. Then they would change it to, “The admins of this group are about to start dropping inactive members, please comment me if you want to stay.” Then people would go, “Me, me, me.” I mean, you could just see. Then they would change it to, “These are the best pancakes I've ever had.”
Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's why you called it pancake.
Gin Stephens: Pancaking. Yes. It was always this pancake, and I’m like, “I don't know what happens if you click that pancake link,” but something bad is going to happen if you click it, but we called it getting pancaked, and somebody would post on there, like, “I think we're about to get pancaked,” and we'd be like, “Yeah, that looks like one,” and then we would keep our eye on it, and then sure enough, then we would block them. Now, Facebook has changed it. If you have post approval turned on, it sends edits back through the approval process. So, hallelujah. But now, they're just putting the spam in the comments.
Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I’m really grateful. Hopefully it won't change. My main hub is much smaller than yours. I think it's almost 8000 or 9000, but I don't know, we don't really get spam.
Gin Stephens: We don't get a lot of spam in the advanced group.
Melanie Avalon: Maybe, spammers are not searching out Biohacking groups compared to-- I don't know, it's weird. Well, okay. This has been absolutely wonderful.
Gin Stephens: It's been a lot of fun. I needed it. Lord, I have so much to do. I have so much to do, Melanie. Anyway, send me positive productive thoughts.
Melanie Avalon: Sending you sane, productive, wonderful vibes. Take some Feals CBD.
Gin Stephens: Oh, that's a good idea.
Melanie Avalon: Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. I will talk to you next week.
Gin Stephens: All right, talk to you then. Bye.
Melanie Avalon: Bye.
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 podcasts, Intermittent Fasting Stories, and the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. Theme music was composed by Leland Cox. See you next week.
STUFF WE LIKE
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BUY Melanie's What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine, Gin's Delay, Don't Deny: Living an Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide
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