Episode 260: Dairy, BCAAs, Dry Mouth, Specific Carbohydrate Diet, Kids Appetites, Natural Flavors, SIBO, Probiotics, And More!

Intermittent Fasting


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Apr 10

Welcome to Episode 260 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:

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Listener Q&A: Celia - consistency of fasting schedule

Listener Q&A: Stephanie - Dry Mouth

The SCD Specific Carbohydrate Diet Podcast

Listener Q&A: Renee - Juice plus capsules

Listener Q&A: sally - Children and fasting

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #119 - Robb Wolf

Episode 237: Our Taste For Sodium, Electrolytes, Low Carb Diets, Hydration & pH Balance, Fatigue & Muscle Cramps, Thermoregulation, Exercise, Sauna, Need Vs. Optimization, And More!

FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

Listener Q&A: amy - Gut!

Healthy Gut, Healthy You: The Personalized Plan to Transform Your Health from the Inside Out

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #19 - Dr. Michael Ruscio

Gut-microbiota-targeted diets modulate human immune status

ATRANTIL: Use The Link Lovemytummy.com/ifp With The Code IFP, To Get 10% Off!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #9 - Dr. Ken Brown


Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 260 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 Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Comprehensive Guide to Delay, Don't Deny Intermittent Fasting. 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.

Friends, I'm about to tell you how you can get free grass-fed, grass-finished ground beef for life. Yes, for life. Gin and I are huge fans of a company called ButcherBox. As you guys know, it can be hard to get high-quality humanely raised meat that you can trust. ButcherBox is the solution. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage-breed pork, nitrate-free, sugar-free bacon, heritage breed hotdogs, and wild-caught seafood all directly to your door. When you become a member, you're joining a community that is focused on doing what's better for all parties. That means caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect, and enjoying better nourishing meals together. They go to great lengths to assure the highest quality, so you can find actual 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef. If you've seen the Netflix documentary, Seaspiracy, you might be aware of fish fraud and problems in the seafood industry. ButcherBox maintains very, very high standards for that. 

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And one more thing before wejump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did that one of our largest exposures to toxic compounds, including endocrine disrupters, which mess with our hormones, obesogens, which literally cause our body to store and gain weight, as well as carcinogens linked to cancer is actually through our skincare? Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for being toxic, and the US has only banned around 10. It's honestly shocking. When you're putting on your conventional skincare makeup, you're likely putting toxic compounds directly into your body. These compounds can make you feel bad, can make it really hard to lose weight, can affect your hormones, your mood, your health. And ladies, if you're thinking of having kids, when you have a child, these compounds actually go directly through the placenta into the newborn. That means your skincare makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. 

Did that conventional lipstick, for example often tests high for lead and the half-life of lead can be up to 30 years in your bones? That means when you put on your lipstick, 30 years later, half of that lead might still be in your body. Thankfully, there's an easy, easy solution to this. There's a company called Beautycounter and they were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient and their products is extensively tested to be safe for your skin. You can actually feel good about what you put on. And on top of that, their products actually work. That's because they're not “all natural.” They actually combine the best of both worlds, both synthetic and natural ingredients to create products that actually support the health of your skin and make your skin look amazing. They have skincare lines for all your skin types, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, anti-aging and brightening peels, and vitamin C serums, and incredible makeup. If you see my makeup on Instagram, that's all Beautycounter. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter.

And if you're thinking of making safe skincare a part of your future like we have, we definitely suggest becoming a band of Beauty member. It's like the Amazon Prime for clean beauty. You get 10% back in product credit, free shipping on qualifying orders, and a welcome gift that is worth way more than the price of the yearlong membership, totally, completely worth it. Also, definitely join my clean beauty email list at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty, I give away a lot of free things on that list and join me on my Facebook group, Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare with Melanie Avalon. I do a weekly giveaway every single week for Beautycounter, people share their experience and product reviews, and so much more. And again, the link to shop with us is melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. All right, now, enjoy the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 260 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 doing great. I just had a great trip last week to Little Rock, Arkansas. So, shoutout to everyone, who got to meet all. I was there. It was an intermittent fasting trip and I loved it.

Melanie Avalon: So, what was it for exactly?

Gin Stephens: Lisa Fischer is just somebody who is amazing. She was on the radio for years in Little Rock, Arkansas. She was a radio talk show host. She discovered intermittent fasting. Actually, funny story. Her son started listening to our podcast years ago, I swear likw 2017 and was like, "Hey, mom. You should try this. I listen to this. These two ladies, you should try this intermittent fasting." And she started doing it, and loved it, started talking about it on the radio. Basically, Little Rock has a great intermittent fasting community, thanks to her. She wanted to have me come out in 2020 when Fast. Feast. Repeat. came out. But obviously, [laughs] there was no traveling. Things are opened back up and she's like, "Let's finally do it." We did. We had a Topo Chico and coffee party in the morning with a bunch of people there, and we recorded a podcast love. She's also a podcaster. Then, we had an event at a restaurant in town that was just amazing, and people came, and I got to meet so many amazing people, and then, we had an event at somebody's home, beautiful home. I stayed with somebody, who is just fantastic.  One of those beautiful houses I've ever been in in my life. They are like, "Hey, you want to come stay with someone you've never met? I'm like, "Count me in." But it was great. There was an event for the medical community to come to. There were doctors there, and all sorts of different practitioners, and we taught intermittent fasting. It was a very long day, but I loved it. As I said, I met so many fabulous people, and intermittent fasting is changing lives, I know we hear it from the questions that we get. But it's amazing to see real people, and connect with them, and that's my favorite thing. It's been a while since I've been able to do that. We had the cruises in 2018 and 2019, and I love nothing more than meeting intermittent fasters, and hearing how intermittent fasting has changed their life. 

Melanie Avalon: How many people were there?

Gin Stephens: 25 to 50 at each event. They were small. We talked about how to open it up and what to do. I wanted to keep it small. I would have the ability to connect with everybody versus having it be huge and me giving a talk. That's not what I wanted to do. Instead, I got to meet everyone, and talk to them, and we had a meet and greet kind of a vibe. 

Melanie Avalon: Did you drive? 

Gin Stephens: No, I took a plane. Little Rock's a long way.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really bad with evaluating distances in the South. Even though, I used to live, I lived in Memphis, which is not that far I don't think from Little Rock.

Gin Stephens: Memphis is all the way on the edge of Tennessee. Even though, Atlanta is close to Tennessee, Tennessee is long. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. Because it's two hours from Little Rock. 

Gin Stephens: Right. It would be a very long drive I think to drive to Little Rock. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah, definitely from--

Gin Stephens: From Augusta. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: I was just trying to remember when I was in Memphis.

Gin Stephens: It's right above Louisiana, Arkansas is. It's pretty far over there. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, that's fun. 

Gin Stephens: It was so much fun and Little Rock is an amazing town.

Melanie Avalon: I've heard that. I haven't been, but I've heard it's really--

Gin Stephens: I had never been there. Now, I'm really spoiled, because this was such a great event that [laughs] people are like, "Would you come to my town?" I'm like, "Well, I don't know if anybody can compete with Lisa Fischer and her friend, Becky," because it was just flawless. Everything was just amazing. 

Melanie Avalon: When did you get back? 

Gin Stephens: I got back on Wednesday. I do not love traveling, though. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really? 

Gin Stephens: No. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I thought you're fine with it.

Gin Stephens: I don't love being on a plane, or traveling, or being in the airport. I am fine with it, but I don't love it. 

Melanie Avalon: You know what's really funny. I used to love it. Can you believe that?

Gin Stephens: Well, I think I used to love it, too. Back when I was a kid, I used to fly. My dad was here in Augusta and my mother was in Virginia. It was very frequently. When I was 12 and over, I'd be a 12-year-old, they threw me on the plane, maybe even younger than that and I would fly from Augusta and usually would have a layover in Charlotte or something for several hours, and I would entertain myself. I was fine. They would put the little wings on you if you were a kid. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Would a flight attendant go with you?

Gin Stephens: I don't think that happened very frequently. I think there were only a few times that I was that young that the flight attendant would look out for me. Other than that, I was pretty fun. But yeah, I flew a lot by myself. That was back in the day when you could smoke on a plane. I wasn't smoking. I was a kid. But there were the no smoking sign, the no smoking section.

Melanie Avalon: Wow. Things have changed. 

Gin Stephens: They really have. But it was such a good event and I loved it. I don't know. Arkansians, I don't know how to say it. I think that's wrong. Anyone from Arkansas [laughs] is listening, I loved being there. So, anyone that I met, thank you for such a fabulous event. 

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. 

Gin Stephens: Anything new with you?

Melanie Avalon: I have two really quick fasting things and then, one other thing. I hosted my first IG Live.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I caught a glimpse of that. I didn't watch the whole thing, but somebody was like, "Oh, Melanie's on Instagram Live." I popped in, and saw you and Cynthia talking, and I was like, "Oh, there they are." It was so great to see all together.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it was really fun. I didn't even realize until she commented in the Facebook group yesterday that we went an hour and a half, which is a really long time.

Gin Stephens: Because you're just talking, right? Just time flies when you're talking to a friend.

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. So, that was really fun. I just felt so awkward at the beginning, because she hadn't joined for a few minutes and I was just there. I was like, "I don't know what to do." So, idealize her.

Gin Stephens: But could you see her the whole time you were talking? 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Once she's there.

Gin Stephens: That's good. What I really don't like is doing some Instagram Live or it's just me looking at the camera. I'm was like, I'm talking at nothing. I don't like that at all. I feel awkward definitely. So, that's how it was. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, right in the beginning, that's how it was and I was like, "This is so awkward. What do I do?" I was like, "Somebody, please ask me a question." But then, people started asking questions. So, then, I was good.

Gin Stephens: That's good. And I'm a bad multitasker. I'm not good at reading questions that people are asking and answering them. I'm not good at that. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. No, to that point, because it's similar to an interview. But normally, in my interviews, it's just audio. I have my notes. I'm just focusing on the conversation. But with the IG Live, well, it's on video, which I don't like, because I'm super aware of all of that. And then, I had my preps questions, but then, the live questions are coming in. It adds another layer to interviewing.

Gin Stephens: It does. It's really hard to see it, because people are also typing random stuff. You don't know what to pay attention to. It's really hard to multitask, and ask good questions, and listen. I don't like it. I don't want it. People are like, "Would you like to do some Instagram Lives when Clean(ish) is coming out?" I'm like, "No, I do not."

Melanie Avalon: If you're being interviewed, it's fine. Because you're just on the receiving end. I was like, "This is a skill. This is a whole another layer of interviewing."

Gin Stephens: Oh, it has a total skill. Yep. At the point in my life where I'm okay with saying, "That's not my skill. [laughs] I'm not even going to try it, because I already know." I've done enough of those kinds of things to know. There's a lot of things I'm good at. I'll just stick to those. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so, there was that second intermittent fasting thing. I've started reading Thomas DeLauer's intermittent fasting book, because he's going to come on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. I've only read the first third, which is just about the health benefits. But I just got to the section about how to do intermittent fasting. It's just always really interesting. Again, I just started it. So, I don't know his whole approach, but it's just always interesting to see people's ideas. 

Gin Stephens: That's true. I, of course, hear all of them from people who are like, "I was reading blah, blah, blah and it said this, or I watched this video and it said that." Because we get a lot of beginners. I don't know if y'all have a lot of beginners in your Facebook groups. 

Melanie Avalon: Some.

Gin Stephens: That was the whole thing about Facebook for me is, it was a lot of beginners all the time popping in. Yeah, but I saw this video, and it said to do this, and then, we were like, "Yeah, but that's not what we do." They're like, "Well, I'm going to do whatever I want to do." I'm like, "Well, yes. But just we're not going to do that here, that sort of thing." That made it really difficult, because there are a lot of conflicting opinions. Today, someone in my community was talking to a friend of hers, and she was conveying to us the frustrating conversations she had, where they were talking about coffee and her friend somehow had the idea that creamer broke a fast, but cream did not. I'm like, "Okay, that's interesting." [laughs] Yes, the baby cow. If he's fasting when he's drinking his mama's milk, the answer is no. [laughs] She probably saw a video that someone's like, "Creamer breaks fast, but cream is fine. Go figure."

Melanie Avalon: What do you think is the most fasting breaker thing that people sometimes wonder if they can have?

Gin Stephens: Well, honestly, I do think it's probably dairy. Because dairy is, it is nature's perfect food for growing a baby and it is definitely not fasting. Anything dairy, I feel that's the food that mammals eat during the period of time where they're growing the most. That's how nature designed it, right? We need rapid growth. Have some dairy. I don't know. It just doesn't seem fasting at all to me. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that's a really good one. The one I was thinking was one people post about my group a lot, which is BCAAs, branched-chain amino acids. Amino acids are going to very quickly stop autophagy.

Gin Stephens: Well, it's all a matter of-- I got broke down on Fast. Feast. Repeat., what are your goals, why are you fasting, why did you choose fasting instead of a low-calorie diet? That's what you have to keep in mind. I'm not against if somebody would rather just say, "You know what, I'm not going to fast. I'm going to do a low-calorie diet. I like that better." Then, do your low-calorie diet. There're more ways to lose weight than fasting. But if you want to do fasting, why are you doing fasting? You're doing fasting for autophagy, you're doing it for the metabolic benefits, you're doing it, so you can tap into stored fat. Why do you want to do anything that's going to keep you from doing those things? Just take the clean fast challenge, and try it, and see.

Melanie Avalon: I think when this comes out, it will have either just ended yesterday or I might actually push it to end today, because of when this airs. We should have, again, this is in the future, I think we will have launched a subscription service for my serrapeptase supplement and it's amazing for a few reasons. What was going to end today was the brief enrollment period, where you could get it at an incredible discount, which is 25% off. And basically, the way it works is you get three bottles and subject to change, but I think it's three bottles every four months. And so, that saves on shipping, it's more sustainable, and then, you get that massive 25% discount, if you signed up in the enrollment window. You would have known about the enrollment window or you do know about it if you're on my email list for my supplements, which is melanieavalon.com/avalonx. But for those of you who have been loving the serrapeptase, which I've been getting so many incredible testimonials about and so many people asking-- It's funny, just recently, probably three or four times within a week, people asked me like, whether upcoming sales or was there a way to save money on ordering. If that's you, this is the solution. Then, the great thing about it is, if you need more than that, of course, you can just order bottles a la carte, but it's a nice way to just have your stock ready, saving money, all the things. So, that's really exciting. 

Again, I think it was supposed to end on the 10th, but I think right after this, I'll talk to my partner and see if we can extend it to the 11th, which should be today. The other announcement is that, my magnesium is moving forward. There will be more information about that soon. But it's going to be a full spectrum. Well, not full, because I realized there's a lot of magnesium. It's more than I thought, but it's going to be eight types of magnesium, including three and eight, which can cross the blood brain barrier, and free of toxic fillers, and a glass bottle free of allergens tested for heavy metals and mold, and it will have activated forms of B6 and manganese to help with absorption. If you guys are looking for an amazing magnesium supplement, that is coming soon. It's going to be called Magnesium Spectrum 8.

Gin Stephens: Awesome. You're right about being so many forms that we just don't even realize. When I was writing Clean(ish), Chad and I had, I don’t know, a fight about mercury. I was talking to him about-- Remember that? We were talking about mercury and he's like, "You need to specify the blah, blah, blah." I'm like, "Nobody knows, nobody cares." They just say mercury. Everything you read, it just says mercury, He's like, "I know. I care or whatever." [laughs] I was like, it wouldn't make sense for me to dig in so much more just on that one topic. I've got a 400 and something page book already. I can't go down every rabbit hole. But he strongly disagreed with my decision not to go farther and specify the type of mercury. That just resonated with me. Trust me, trust me, you just say mercury and fish, and that's all you need to say. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think the people who have gone really down the rabbit holes like me with mercury toxicity, there's three, I think main forms. That's so funny. There's a lot. There's a lot of stuff.

Gin Stephens: You just need to know. Be careful with fish. It's a kind of mercury. Pick the kind of fish that doesn't have any of the kinds.

Melanie Avalon: There's one that's environmental. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, don't ask me. I don't eat fish. [laughs] For all of you that eat fish, you're going to have to look into this a little more than I do, because I literally don't eat fish. I've told you that.

Melanie Avalon: Because I think there's like a mercury in the environment and then, when the fish eat it, it becomes a different form. The implications for the human is, I don't know if we metabolize them differently. They have different potential effects.

Gin Stephens: Anyway, there're a lot of types of stuff. That's the moral of the story.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, I will give the link though for to get the serrapeptase, the subscription, and the magnesium when it comes out is avalonx.us. 

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If you've been looking to finally jump on the bone broth train, do it now and do it with Beauty & the Broth. And Melissa has an amazing offer just for our listeners. You can go to thebeautyandthebroth.com or melanieavalon.com/broth and use the coupon code, MELANIEAVALON to get 15% off. That's thebeautyandthebroth.com with the coupon code, MELANIEAVALON for 15% off. All of the listeners, who have tried it ever since I aired my episode with Melissa have talked about how much they love it. It is so delicious. You guys will definitely love it. So, definitely check that out. And by the way, bone broth does break your fast. This is something that you want to have in your eating window. In fact, it's an amazing way to open your eating window, because when you're in that fasted state, when you take in bone broth as the first thing, all of those rich nutrients and collagen go straight to your gut, help heal your gut, help with leaky gut, help digestive issues. And again, you can go to thebeautyandthebroth.com and use the coupon code, MELANIEAVALON for 15% off. I'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: All righty, shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Absolutely. 

Melanie Avalon: All right. To start things off, we have a question from Celia and the subject-- Oh, she goes by Cel and the subject is: "Consistency of fasting schedule." And Cel says, "Hi, Melanie and Gin, I am a longtime listener and IF-er. Although, I just realized I might have cut it off and it's possible that it was Sicilia or Celia, regardless.

Gin Stephens: Or, maybe you did pronounce it Cel, C-E-L. I don't know. I'll just say Celia.

Melanie Avalon: So, Celia, she says, "I am a longtime listener and IF-er. I love and truly believe in the benefits of the IF lifestyle. Recently, my schedule changed and I find that my fasting times are not as consistent as they used to be. I used to do 16:8 every day. Now, I'm able to range from 15 to 20 hours of fasting with every day being different. But most days are at least 16 plus hours and that would be a fasting." She says, "Will this be beneficial to my weight loss or is it better to stick to one schedule? Thanks in advance and thanks for wonderful podcast."

Gin Stephens: Well, that is a great question, Celia. It's really hard for us to say what plan will give you the weight loss that you need. For example, you said you used to do 16:8 every day. That was not a weight loss approach for me. If I were to ask somebody, will 16:8 work for me for weight loss and they were somebody that it did work for, they would say yes. But then, when I did it, the answer was no or vice versa. If you asked me, will 16:8 work for weight loss. If I only based it on my experiences, I would say no, whereas there are people who lose weight on 16:8. So, I just want to toss that out there. I was just not one of them being a volume eater and 16 hours was not enough. Average time for fasting, plus an eight-hour window was just too much eating for me. 

Now, that being said, it sounds you're having to move your window around to different times of the day, meaning that your fast is sometimes shorter and sometimes longer. I would like to encourage you to do what worked for me when I was in weight loss mode. I didn't track my fasting hours. I tracked my eating window. We know every day has 24 hours in it. We know that. As long as I stuck to an eating window of five hours or less, no matter how I shifted it around five hours or less for my eating window, my fast averaged 19 hours or more. Because if one day, my window was shifted this direction and I had only fasted for 15 hours, but I kept it to five hours or less, then the next day, if I shifted it to later in the day, I would have had a longer fast, if that makes sense. Just think about it. It's your window is this little sliding thing that slides earlier, it slides later. But the boundary on the window will mean your average fast will be whatever the difference is. If your average window was six hours, your average fast would be 18. 

Average, of course, you might have a 16 one day and a 20 the next that averages to 18. See if that helps you. I'm a big believer in switching things up being beneficial to our body. I don't think it would hurt you to switch your window around if you need to as long as you have those boundaries somewhere. For some people, the boundary is the fast must always be X amount of time and that's the boundary that works for you. For me, it was the boundary on the eating window that made a huge difference.

Melanie Avalon: That's actually a really good visual. If you visualized the sliding bar thing, if you visualized a lot of bars and there's just a sliding bar on each day.

Gin Stephens: That's my elementary teacher coming out. I'm really good at explaining things, so that kids go, "Oh, yeah." [laughs] One time I taught time. I don't know, elapsed time. My principal was in there. She's like, "That's the best explanation of elapsed time I've ever seen." I'm like, "Well, good."

Melanie Avalon: Nice. I agree. 

Gin Stephens: Awesome. By the way, elapsed time is hard to teach to children. Just FYI. 

Melanie Avalon: Wait. So, what is elapsed time?

Gin Stephens: It's the amount of time that passed from one thing to another and it was really, really tricky. Because of the way we do our time with noon and then, it goes to one again. If you ask a third grader, you get to school at 8:30 in the morning, you leave at 3:30 in the afternoon, how long were you there? 

Melanie Avalon: That's elapsed time? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's tricky. Elapsed time is time between one event and the next. And that's harder than you think.

Melanie Avalon: Why is it hard?

Gin Stephens: You can't just do a simple math. You have to think, well, from 8:30 until noon, and then, from noon to 3:30. You have to think about the amount of time in between.

Melanie Avalon: Like nine, 10, 11, 12, one, two, three counting that number?

Gin Stephens: Right. And that was an easy example. It gets harder if we're talking about something how much time is between 9:45 and 1:15. 

Melanie Avalon: All right, and then, you're adding like-- Yeah. Or, 9:42 to 1:04. So, you're adding the four and the--

Gin Stephens: Correct. You can't just do a simple math equation of subtraction, because we've got an hour there. Because we don't do our time in 24 hour, we don't say it's 13 o' clock. [laughs] 

Melanie Avalon: Two people in their head do that differently, you think?

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. There's lots of ways to do it. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's so interesting, because I just do it the way I do it. It never occurred to me.

Gin Stephens: That other people would do it differently. Yeah. 

Melanie Avalon: If it's 9:42 to 1:12, I add the amount from 9:42 to 10 and they add the amount from 1:00 to 1:12, and then, I add the hours in between.

Gin Stephens: That makes sense. Yep. 

Melanie Avalon: I like math. 

Gin Stephens: I like math, too, and I like teaching kids' ways of thinking about it as they understand what's happening. That was one of my gifts and strengths. So, anyway.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I think you answered that really well. 

Gin Stephens: All right. Well, ready to go on to the next question? 

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: This is from Stephanie and the subject is: "Dry mouth." She says, "Hello, I've just discovered your books and I'm super interested to IF. I have one concern about clean fasting. I have severe dry mouth issues due to medications. I use Biotene mouthwash at night, plus, I frequently squirt Biotene moisturizing spray into my mouth during the day. I also put a XyliMelts on my gums every night before going to sleep, so that the dry mouth symptoms won't wake me up. During the past week, I have experimented with using these products less frequently to see how I do. My thought was to eventually eliminate them altogether, so that I can try clean fasting. I have concluded that the dry mouth symptoms are too miserable to leave untreated, as well as bad for dental health. I don't think these symptoms would lessen over time if I quit using dry mouth products is they are known side effects of my medications. These are essential meds, all the other meds of this type cause dry mouth as well, and my taking them is non-negotiable. Can you suggest any alternative dry mouth products that do not have any artificial sweeteners or anything I could make myself? I've been searching online and cannot come up with anything. Thank you so much. I very much want to try IF and especially, the clean fasting. Sincerely, Stephanie."

Melanie Avalon: All right, Stephanie. Thank you so much for your question. When we first got this question, I was doing a lot of research on it really hoping to find the magical answer and was not finding much. And then, actually, interestingly, I met a woman, her name is Lee Bernstein and she hosts a podcast, The SCD, Specific Carbohydrate Diet Podcast.

Gin Stephens: I know Lee.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, you do? 

Gin Stephens: I actually helped her get started on her podcast. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah. She's an intermittent faster from my community and I'd been on her podcast. But she was like, "How do I start a podcast?" So, we talked on the phone and I helped her.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, nice. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I love her. 

Melanie Avalon: Do you know her Barney story?

Gin Stephens: I don't know a Barney story. Uh-huh.

Melanie Avalon: She wrote the Barney song like the I love you, you love me.

Gin Stephens: I did not know that. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, she said that she wrote it for some teacher-- I don't know if it was a book, a teacher book. I'd have to ask her again. She wrote it for something, some project and then, somehow it ended up in Barney. One day, I think it was one of her kids, they said, "Mom, they're playing your song on the show." She was like, "That's my song." So, it's a little fun claim to fame. I actually, really recommend her podcast for anybody who is interested in the specific carbohydrate diet. I historically was very interested in it, especially, when I was trying to find the diet that best worked for my GI issues. Actually, it was one of the initial inspirations for my Food Sense Guide app that I have now, because I originally wanted to make a guide that compared a lot of the diets. The SCD diet, the FODMAP diet, Dr. Pimentel Cedars-Sinai diet, and then, there was this low-fermentation diet. But then, I realized with legalities, I couldn't really go that route. So, that's how it manifested instead to what it is today, which is food sensitivity compounds. Regardless, if you're interested in the SCD diet, definitely check out that podcast. 

The SCD diet is basically a diet, the mentality surrounding it is that for carbs, you eat specific carbs, so you eat monosaccharides, because the idea is that those are much more easily absorbed. You don't get potentially the GI issues that might come if you struggle to break down more complex or disaccharide carbs. In any case, I was doing a call with her, and she said she really struggles with dry mouth, and I was asking her, because I was like, "We have a listener, who has a question about this. So, what do you recommend?" I felt a little bit better, because I hadn't found an answer and she didn't have that much of an answer. She said that-- This is external, but she actually was talking about Beautycounter, their lip glosses that she uses externally, and she says, it's the first thing she's found ever that helps her symptoms externally, which was pretty amazing that she doesn't react to. She said, internally that putting coconut oil-- This will not be during your fast, but she was saying at night soothing with tea with coconut oil in it is really, really soothing and can have a lasting effect. But she didn't have any suggestions for during the fast and everything I found wouldn't really work. 

For what you're doing at night, so, putting the XyliMelts on your gums each night before going to sleep, I don't want to make an assumption. But since most people are eating a little bit later rather than doing a breakfast only window, I would honestly just keep going with what you're doing at night and then, for during the day, I know you say that you really need it and that it probably won't get better without it. But I mean, so unhelpful, because my suggestion is to try it without it and see if you can do a lot in your eating window that will have a lasting effect. But I'm sure that since you've struggled with this that you've tried a lot of things. If you want to get to more clean fasting, I would do as much as you can in your eating window with addressing the symptoms, and then, still do the thing at night, and then, try to not do it during the day. I feel that was not too helpful. Gin, do you have thoughts?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, and this is just one of those situations, where sometimes we don't have an ideal situation. If you have to take these essential medications, and it gives you dry mouth, and the dry mouth is miserable, and then, the only alternative is something that breaks a fast, then, you have to do what you have to do. I am 100% on team clean fast, except when you have a medical situation like yours, and it's miserable to not use it, and you're just going to have to recognize a few things. Number one, it might make it really harder for you to fast. Just keep that in mind. You may have to figure out "Okay, maybe I can't have a 16-hour clean fast, but maybe you can fast clean for 12 hours, and then, just do the very best you can to stretch out as many clean fasting hours as you can. This is not a reason for someone else who's listening to say, "Ooh, I'm going to put artificial sweetener in my coffee, because Gin said it. No. [laughs] This is just one of those very special circumstances, where you have to choose the lesser of the evils. It's not an ideal situation no matter what. I'm sorry that you're suffering from that, but you've got to be able to live a good quality of life with your dry mouth. I don't have a better suggestion for how to combat dry mouth, because I don't know of any and I don't suffer from it. I can't say, "Oh, I just try to--" No, I know it's miserable and you can't deal with it. It's not good for your mouth. So, sometimes, when we have a choice between this or that, you choose the lesser of the two evils and pick the one that you can live with.

Melanie Avalon: I think that's very insightful. It's interesting. When I got the question, I was like, "Oh, I'm sure I'll find something," but I didn't. I think she probably would have found it as well.

Gin Stephens: I think so, too, because she knows all about it.

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. We feel free, Stephanie. Let us know, though if you do find something that works. We have a question from Renee. The subject is: "Juice Plus capsules and Renee says, "Hi, I've just read your book, Fast. Feast. Repeat. I have started 28 days of clean IF. My question is, can I take Juice Plus capsules in the morning without breaking my fast? I've included the labels below. I appreciate your help. So, looking at the label."

Gin Stephens: I do not even need to look at the label to answer this question. [laughs] We've gotten this question before. So, I'm familiar with this product. 

Melanie Avalon: You've gotten it before in the groups?

Gin Stephens: Oh, millions of times. Oh, yeah, oh, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. What is it? It's like fruits and vegetables? 

Gin Stephens: Well, here's the thing. We want to avoid anything food like during the fast and Juice Plus markets, they are products as being amazingly food like. They themselves tell you how food like they are. So, keep that in your eating window with the rest of your food.

Melanie Avalon: Yes, definitely, definitely, definitely.

Gin Stephens: Any supplement that is very, very food like is not going to be a great thing to have during the fast. Just put that in your eating window and you can get all the benefits from that product that you want just in your eating window. That's where all the nutrients come into our day in our eating window.

Melanie Avalon: Perfect. All right now we have a question from Sally. Subject is: "Children and fasting." And Sally says, "Hello, Mel and Gin. I have always been a breakfast girl, but I have gradually decreased what I eat at breakfast and I have started the 16:8 fast the last two days and I'm loving it. I pretty much forced my kids to have breakfast every day and now, I'm thinking that maybe that's not the best idea. Our kids naturally conditioned to do the fast and then, we push our three-meal-a-day beliefs on them. Should I be making them have breakfast? Sorry, if you've already answered this. I am only on Episode 7 of your podcast, which I am loving. Sally." We have answered this before, but it's been a while. So, I thought we would bring it back. And she has another question. She also says, "Does toothpaste break your fast?" Oh, she's from Australia.

Gin Stephens: All right, well, Sally, brushing your teeth is something that's very brief. Just brush and go about your day. It's very different from if you're having a diet soda that you're having for a long period of time. Because you rarely would have one sip of diet soda and that's it for the whole day. People drink it over a period of time. In fact, I remember back when I was having all those diety drinks, I was sipping on one nonstop, morning till evening. I was always having something that broke a fast. Anyway, toothpaste is brief. Your brush, you go on, brush couple times a day, that's it. So, please, brush your teeth. Now, as far as the kids go, we really just do everything we can. It seems like to get them to not listen to their natural hunger and satiety signals, when you think about the way we raise them in today's society. We say, "Oh, go ahead and eat this." We have the regular meal times. We say, "Clean your plate, go ahead and eat more." If they tell you, you are full, "We are like eat three more bites for mama." I mean, I remember saying that. It didn't seem enough to me, but he was full, but I was trying to get him to eat more. 

It's no wonder that by the time we grow up, we have lost complete touch with our hunger and satiety signals we've been trained to eat, I guess, Pavlov's dogs, right? We eat on cue, we eat when it's time to eat, eat because we're told to eat. I really do think that we offer food to kids at different times and then, see if they're like, "No, thank you," then, we don't force them to eat. I think that even comes to breakfast. Offer them breakfast, if they eat it or not. If you're having to force them to eat something, I think that's never a winning strategy. Now, on the flipside, I would never say, "All right, kids are fasting," because that's a whole different thing. You might think what's the difference, if they're not eating breakfast, they're "fasting." Well, we call it break fast, because everybody breaks their fast. But don't tell children, they're doing an intermittent fasting approach or make a big deal out of it. Because maybe on Tuesday, they're not hungry for breakfast, but they wake up hungry on Wednesday and they want it. That's what you want to teach your kids. "Are you hungry right now?" If the answer is yes, then, let's go ahead and have something to eat. If you're not hungry right now, then let me know when you are hungry kind of a thing. I know you're like, "Well, this is when we're eating." That's sticky. But I know that so many of us have just grown-up eating, because it was time to eat, and that was the only reason, and that hasn't really served us very well.

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. This is not the same thing. This is about the eating portion of it. But I did think that was something a really, really valuable section of your book, Clean(ish) was your whole section about working with your kids. When you're making changes in your dietary choices and I liked what you're saying about how we like to just not blame the kids, but just say, oh, they're picky eaters, when really it's probably a manifestation of-- They don't have to be picky eaters.

Gin Stephens: They don't. Children are not naturally picky eaters in the world. And then, parents will sometimes say, "Yeah, but my child has sensory disorders." I'm like, "Well, that's a different thing." If your child has a diagnosed disorder that causes sensory problems and they can't eat things that are crunchy, for example, that's a whole different can of worms or if your child is autistic, whatever issues. I also think that those issues are not our natural state of being. We have to think, why are so many children having these issues now? That's not normal or natural. Again, it goes to our chemical world, changing our kids and their gut microbiomes for example. So, it's really a giant can of worms [laughs] and in some parts of the world, they eat those worms, but our kids are like, "No." [laughs] 

Melanie Avalon: Speaking of worms, Monday is when I interview Bill Schindler that Eat Like a Human, the one where he talks about like insect protein and all of these crazy things. I'm super excited. Do you remember, because Gin, you mentioned this stat in your book and I've read it a lot of other places, too. How many times you have to introduce a food to a kid before they might--?

Gin Stephens: I can't remember the number off the top of my head. It's an average number. It is a lot of times.

Melanie Avalon: It's like a dozen or something. It's around there. 

Gin Stephens: The first time I gave Cal carrots and he didn't like carrots. I'm like, "Cal didn’t like carrots." I didn't know any better. You just keep offering it. Eventually, they'll like the carrots.

Melanie Avalon: So, I just looked it up briefly. This one research site says, at least 12 times maybe up to 30 times.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, and my kids were above average. So, they probably would have needed 30. [laughs] Joking, but you know.

Melanie Avalon: I do want to comment on the toothpaste really quickly, because I know we've talked about a lot of different toothpastes that we've used over the years. The one I use right now, I actually really, really like and it has no sweetness to it at all. It is Weleda Salt toothpaste. I get it at Whole Foods. I'm looking at the EWG rating for it right now, the Environmental Working Group, and this is the 2016 formulations. I'd have to double check and make sure it's the same formulation. Oh, and to clarify, the Environmental Working Group also something that Gin talks about in her book, Clean(ish), which we will put a link to in the show notes. It's an organization, where they rate the potential toxicity a lot of chemicals, and ingredients, and things pervasive in our food, in our cosmetics, in our environment, and they give ratings, and you can see what products are rated, and you can also see the breakdown of why it's rated, because normally, the number-- or the number is an average of all of the ingredients. 

Gin Stephens: Can I pop in real quick comment about that? If you're using the app, it gives you less information than if you're on their website. Just FYI. If people are ever looking at the app and they're confused by the number, go to their website, because they're more in depth on their website. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay, that's really good to know. They also have their specific, what is it skin deep database specific to cosmetics? Looking at the salt toothpaste, for example, so, it has a three, which is fair, but the reason it has a three, all of the ingredients are actually ones and two, except there are two ingredients that are fours, which is not as good. But those ingredients, one of them is peppermint oil, and the reason it's a four is because people can have allergies to it. I know I'm good with peppermint oil. So, I'm not concerned about that. And then, the other four is unspecified flavor, which as we know that can be really anything, but on the label, it says that it's from natural essential oils. I personally feel completely fine with this formulation. The reason I'm mentioning it is because it has no sweet taste. It's very salty and a little bit of pepperminty. It's actually very strong on the peppermint front. It's a really good one. If you do want to toothpaste that doesn't have any sweetness to it, which are really hard to find. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, they are. I just like, "No big deal. I don't even try."

Melanie Avalon: Honestly, this may be one of the only ones-- The amount of hours probably that I've spent in the Whole Foods toothpaste section like looking at every single one, it's really hard to find ones without sweetness.

Gin Stephens: it really is. That was a really good tip you just gave about. Really digging into the rating and figuring out why it gets the number, it gets instead of just using it as like, "Oh, that's whatever. I can't use that." That's the whole point of being educated and say, "Well, why is this rated the way it's rated?" And knowing what is your personal definition of clean(ish), what you would or would not tolerate in your product is different than what I would or would not tolerate in my product.

Melanie Avalon: Actually, to that point, I recently had a listener reach out about LMNT, the electrolyte supplement that we talked about a lot on the show. They have a raw unflavored version, but then they have a lot of flavors. The way it's listed on the packet is natural flavors. This person was very concerned, because they had watched this YouTube video about natural flavors and how toxic they are or how they are something that you should avoid at all costs, which in general, I definitely agree with.

Gin Stephens: Because they can hide anything under those names. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. She sent me the video and I was like, "Yes, this is quite often a problem. Natural flavors can really be anything." I was like, "That's why it's really important to trust and find out what is in the flavors." I was telling her how-- When we interviewed Robb, I don't know if I asked him about the natural flavors on this show or on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. Because I had an electrolyte episode with him on both shows. But in one of the episodes, I'll just put a link in the show notes to both. I asked him about the natural flavors and he was able to tell me literally what it comes from. I really trust Robb. What was funny was, I told her all this, but she couldn't really see that perspective, because watching this YouTube video that made it sound all bad all the time.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Natural flavor could be just fine or it could be something really terrible. They didn't have to tell you, because they just call it natural flavors. That's the thing. That's where you're like--

Melanie Avalon: We need nuance. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you just don't know what it is. If I don't know what it is, I'm suspicious of what it might be. But if you have talked to the creator and he tells you what it is, then, it's okay.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly. I was like, "How do I explain that--? I was saying what we just said that it really is context dependent. But it goes back to what we were saying in the beginning of the show. I think you were saying about people hear ideas, very black and white intense ideas, and then, it can be hard to have nuance surrounding everything. So, I just encourage doing your research and diving in deep. 

Gin Stephens: Absolutely. 

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Melanie Avalon: Shall we go on to our next question?

Gin Stephens: All right, this is from Amy and the subject is: "gut!!" which I just love that subject. [laughs] All right, she says, "Hi, ladies. Love your podcast. I've been doing IF off and on for about six months. I've been doing it correctly with the clean fast and the whole works for three months and I feel great. I don't have a lot of weight to lose, but the science is fascinating and I learned so much with Gin's book, Fast. Feast. Repeat. So good." Thank you so much, Amy. "I have lost about five to eight pounds and my clothes continue to feel better on me. I like Gin do not weigh myself anymore. I don't care about the number. However, just to give you an idea, I'm 5'1" and I think I'm around 130. That sounds high to some people, but I feel good here. My life has been nothing, but diet after diet and I've been as high as 155." So, 130 feels great. "Anyway, my question is for Melanie. I could listen to you all day long about SIBO and gut bacteria. I have a huge, long history of digestive issues. I have been diagnosed with SIBO, lactose intolerance, and fructose malabsorption through breath testing, I feel much better following a low FODMAP diet and either taking lactase before I eat dairy or just eliminating it altogether. Okay. Now my question is, my doctor has told me not to take probiotics because I have too much bacteria in my small intestine and by the way, we have tried to treat it multiple times with various antibiotics, but it never really goes away. Natural probiotics such as apple cider vinegar, kombucha, sauerkraut, etc., make my gut worse as in terrible gas and diarrhea. I am typically more on the constipated side. I'm wondering if you have the same issues and why, when something is supposed to help feed good bacteria and I'm having the opposite effect. Do you have these issues with your SIBO problems? Side note, IF has helped tremendously with the gas and bloating if I do happen to eat too much of something I'm not supposed to. I assume because I don't have food breaking down in my gut constantly. It does not seem like rocket science, so, I don't know why this has taken me so long to figure out and why all of the digestive doctors and nutritionists I have seen through the years never mentioned that maybe I should give my digestion a break during the day, so, the gases don't build up so much. Anyway, I appreciate any thoughts on why I can't handle certain natural probiotics. Thanks, Amy."

Melanie Avalon: Awesome, Amy. Thank you so much for your question and yes, I definitely relate to all of this. Okay, so, there is a lot here. First of all about the fasting, and giving your gut a break, and the beneficial effects. Yes, that's one of my favorite benefits of intermittent fasting for sure. There's a lot of reasons for that. Like Amy mentioned, giving your gut a break. Your migrating motor complex, which is the natural intestinal movements of your GI tract, so, they actually happen on a clock. When you're fasted, it allows those movements to happen and actually move things through, and Amy said, "Keep things from building up." And also, it's thought that fasting selectively helps support good bacteria while helping bad bacteria die off, which is really, really nice. Thomas DeLauer, reading his book, I just read this section last night and he was saying, I never thought about it this way. He was saying that the bad bacteria tend to replicate a lot faster. They need to be basically fed. The fasting helps prune them out a bit. I know that fasting has been shown to boost-- Who is it who talks about this? I think it's Dr. Gundry talks about this all the time. Akkermansia, which is a beneficial gut bacteria and it goes up and fasting. Yeah, so, fasting can be great for the gut microbiome. 

As far as the SIBO, which is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, basically, it's a condition where there is an excess of bacteria, potentially, good and bad in the small intestine, which is supposed to be relatively sterile compared to the large intestine, which is our colon. And sidenote. It's thought historically that that is "bad bacteria" coming up from your large intestine. But I was listening to a podcast recently with Dr. Ruscio, who we've had on the show and I actually, I really suggest his book, Healthy Gut, Healthy You to help tackle a lot of this. He works with low FODMAP diets and he addresses all of this. We can put a link to both our interview with him as well as his book in the show notes. But recently, they've started doing research and wondering if small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is actually created more from top down. Bacteria from your mouth going down, rather than up from the large intestine, which is very interesting concept. But in any case, so, just a quick clarification about your terminology, because you're talking about probiotics but then you say, I'm wondering when something is supposed to help feed good bacteria, am I having the opposite effect? 

Probiotics don't feed gut bacteria. Probiotics are actually bacteria. Prebiotics are the substrates that would feed bacteria. That's a lot of types of foods. When you're mentioning natural probiotics such as apple cider vinegar-- Okay, so, apple cider vinegar, if it's natural, not pasteurized with, they call it with the mother that would have probiotics in it. Kombucha probiotic, sauerkraut-- Okay, so, these are all probiotic foods. A few different things going on here. One, a lot of people with SIBO need to clear out some of that bacteria before they're bringing in the bacteria and sometimes, it can just exacerbate conditions. Some people do great. Some people probiotics and probiotic foods really, really help. Other people, not so much. It's so individual and I wish there was one answer, but there's not. Just like there's not one diet for everybody. If you are experimenting with these foods, I'd recommend, I don't know how much of them you're eating. If you want to try them, I would try very, very minimal amounts and see if that helps. It's actually thought-- This is interesting. A few things about these foods. If they are completely unpasteurized, it is possible that you're getting live probiotics from it. But the benefits actually might be more from the signaling from them. 

A few for things. Basically, they might even have an antibiotic effect, which is really interesting. And then, also Dr. Gundry talks about this in his new book, Unlocking the Keto Code. But these foods actually can create short chain fatty acids when they're metabolized and that can actually have a beneficial effect on the gut. It might not even be the actual bacteria themselves in this that it's having the effect. Another thing that speaks to this is, there have been studies on probiotic supplements that are dead. So, they're not even alive and they have beneficial effects. The thinking is that, it's more the body's response to the probiotics maybe not so much even the probiotics themselves. All that said, if it's making things worse for you, I would not keep doing it. I would focus more on the foundational diet. It sounds this low FODMAP diet is working for you and the lack tastes before dairy. I would focus on that. If you want to experiment with these foods, like I said, try just a tiny bit, and maybe write it out, and see if it helps. That's something to consider. Also, something else, there was a very fascinating study pretty recently. I might have talked about on the show. Okay, so this is going to sound a little bit contradictory to what I just said. 

But there was a 2021 study published in Cell fascinating. It's called gut microbiota targeted diets modulate human immune status. They actually compared a high-fermented food diet to a high-fiber diet for the effects on the gut microbiome as well as inflammatory markers and they found the-- This is why I'm saying. This is a little bit contradictory. They found that the high-fermented food diet was substantially better than the high-fiber diet, because it seems seemingly the fiber diet just exacerbated symptoms. The point of all that is, I think you touched on this. I think you've figured a little bit of this out, because you're doing the low FODMAP diet. So, that's probably a reason that that is benefiting you so well. But I think the point of all this to bring everything together is that, you really have to find what works for you and things are different for different people. Because what that study, for example, people often say, "Oh, eat tons of fiber to fix your gut." But it might be more individual. I think one of the nuances of that study was it actually depended on people's baseline gut microbiome state as to what effects the dietary approaches had. So, I'm going to stop, but I just wanted to encourage you-- I would not feel you have to be doing these foods. You could also try, because you're talking about probiotics from foods. You could also try probiotic supplements and see how those help. You might find that those work. A lot of people really like BiOptimizers, P3-OM. I've found that one really beneficial. I've also experimented with Bifidobacterium-specific probiotics. So, if you do go that route, those will probably be more beneficial than the lactobacillus ones, especially, if you have trouble with dairy. But yes, that was all over the place. Gin, do you have thoughts?

Gin Stephens: Because it's so complicated and it's not easy. If we're starting from a healthy gut, then, we should be able to tolerate so many foods, especially, these probiotic foods, and these fiber foods, and these healthy foods. A healthy gut does great with those foods. But as I talk about in Clean(ish), for example, Will, my son that's 22 now, I'm pretty sure he was not born with a healthy gut based on the way I ate when I was pregnant, and probably, my own gut microbiome, eating a lot of ultra-processed foods. He was a baby, he had thrush. I think he had a really terrible gut and that led to a lot of his issues. In the modern world, we're not always starting with a healthy gut. So, there's the issue. Things that would have been fine are no longer fine. I actually thought it was very interesting. Something that really stuck in my mind while researching for Clean(ish), the whole idea of fiber, exacerbating gut issues, and it just came in my mind when Melanie was talking. People were like, "Well, fiber destroys your gut. Every time I eat it, it's terrible. Fiber must be bad." But really, you got to go back several steps. 

Let's say, you have a traditional standard American diet, the SAD diet, and you're eating a lot of ultra-processed foods or mostly ultra-processed foods, your gut bacteria might actually eat your gut lining, because they don't have enough fiber to work on. Now, they're eating your gut lining. Now, you've got leaky gut. Now you're like, "I'm going to eat healthier, I'm going to add all these good fiber foods, because I'm upping my eating healthy." Then, you eat those foods and your gut is damaged from all the years of poor eating habits. And now, you can't handle fiber because your gut lining is compromised. Now, you have leaky gut and fiber exacerbates the problem. That book that you mentioned by Dr. Ruscio, I loved when I read it. It was years ago, but he talks about that we can heal. Whatever state you're in right now, don't assume that that is the state of your gut forever. I love that he talks about that you can heal your gut. I would focus on that. In the meantime, though, you do have to work with the gut and the body you have now. If something exacerbates your problems, you got to figure out, is it worth it, is this going to help me get better, or is this just making things worse? Really, ideally, in a perfect world, we would have a gastroenterologist, who understood all the ins and outs literally, and could guide you through rebuilding your gut microbiome, and having things be healthy, and working as intended with a strong gut lining, and a great gut microbiome habitat just in general.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. Yeah. What I really love about Dr. Rucsio, because he has a podcast you could check out. He's always reading all of the latest research, and he has a very nuanced approach, and everything Gin just said, he really understands that it's very individual and you have to find the path that works for you. I think with the fiber, also, what Gin was saying, it might be a process to getting to a place, where you can have more of it and it might be a slow journey. So, I think we shouldn't be hard on ourselves if we can't eat a wallop of fiber.

Gin Stephens: Absolutely. And that doesn't mean the fiber is bad. It just means that your body isn't processing it correctly, why?

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. Oh, I did run into on one resource, because she said, she struggles with constipation. So, I love Atrantil. Did we have Ken Brown on this show? We did, right?

Gin Stephens: I think we did. I know we had Atrantil on here. Yeah. I did remember his name, but I know we did. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: And he was one of my first guests as well on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. Wow, that seems so long ago.

Gin Stephens: It really does. We've been doing this show for five years. 

Melanie Avalon: That's crazy. Wow. Atrantil, it was developed by Dr. Ken Brown, he's a gastroenterologist. It's all natural polyphenols and a few other compounds. It can be really a game changer for bloating and constipation in particular. I love it. I love, love, love it. If you go to lovemytummy.com/ifp and use the coupon code, IFP, that will get you 10% off at checkout. I will say, because I think you can order on Amazon as well, but ordering from their website, they actually do have really fast shipping. It's pretty comparable to Amazon. It's really hard for companies to compete with shipping with Amazon.

Gin Stephens: I know. It really, really is. I think they take a loss on it. Honestly, I think Amazon takes a loss to get your business.

Melanie Avalon: Well. In any case, hopefully that was helpful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. The show notes will have a full transcript as well as links to everything that we talked about. So, definitely check that out. They will be at ifpodcast.com/episode260. And then, you can follow us on Instagram. I am @melanieavalon and Gin is @ginstephens and I think that is everything. So, anything from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: Nope, I'll just see you next week.

Melanie Avalon: Okey-dokey. Bye. 

Gin Stephens: Bye. 

Melanie Avalon: Thank you so much for listening to the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember, everything we discussed on this show does not constitute medical advice. We're not doctors. If you enjoyed the show, please consider writing your review on iTunes. We couldn't do this without our amazing team. Administration by Sharon Merriman, editing by Podcast Doctors, show notes and artwork by Brianna Joyner, transcripts by SpeechDocs, theme music by Leland Cox. See you next week.


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