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May 03

Episode 159: Anna Cabeca, Keto Green, Hormonal Changes, Menopause, Alkalinity, IF for Women, Reversing Infertility, Sexual Health And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

 Subscribe For Updates HERE!

Welcome to Episode 159 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

Dr. Anna Cabeca, an Emory University trained gynecologist and women's health expert was diagnosed with early menopause at age 38 y.o. Devastated she went around the world looking for answers and healing and found it. She is now a triple board-certified, menopause and hormone expert. She is internationally acclaimed for her work in gynecology and obstetrics, integrative medicine, and anti-aging and regenerative medicine. Dr. Cabeca has changed the lives of thousands of women across the globe, connecting to others through humor, honesty and passion. Her new book “Keto Green 16” and other empowering transformation programs have helped women of all ages become their best selves again. Her successful line of all-natural products features the alkaline superfoods drink Mighty Maca® PLUS and the rejuvenating vulvar cream Julva®. Recently, Dr. Cabeca was named “2018 Innovator of the Year” by Mindshare Collaborative, the premier community for health and wellness influencers and entrepreneurs. In 2017, the Age Management Medicine Group presented her the prestigious Alan P. Mintz Award for Clinical Excellence.

You can discover more about Dr. Cabeca at DrAnnaCabeca.com and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Get Keto-Green 16: The Fat-Burning Power of Ketogenic Eating + The Nourishing Strength of Alkaline Foods = Rapid Weight Loss and Hormone Balance

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

BiOptimizers: A company whose mission is to fix your digestion! They make a range of awesome supplements, including digestive and proteolytic enzymes, gluten-hacks, a "one size fits all" superstar probiotoic, HCL, and more! Get their super potent Masszymes to digest your food properly!!! Use The Link p3om.com/ifpodcastfree To Claim Your Free Bottle!

BLUBlox: Overexposure to blue light in our modern environments can lead to increased anxiety, stress, headaches, and other health conditions. Even a tiny exposure to artificial light can completely offset your circadian rhythm! Unlike many “blue light blocking” glasses on the market, BLUBlox provides glasses that block the exact blue wavelengths you need to regulate sleep, reduce anxiety, and much more! They also provide different types of glasses for the time of day, season, and your personal electronic and light exposure! Plus, for every BLUblox purchase, they donate a pair of glasses to someone in need! Go To blublox.com And Use The Code ifpodcast For 15% Off!

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

SHOW NOTES

01:10 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Use The Link p3om.com/ifpodcastfree To Claim Your Free Bottle!

Episode 97: All About Hormones With Dr. Anna Cabeca: IF And Menstrual Cycles, Menopause, The Keto Green Diet, The Importance Of Alkalinity, The Role Of Stress, Insulin/Cortisol/Oxytocin, And More!

05:20 - Anna's Personal Health Journey; Reversing Infertility And Menopause

07:40 - Sailing Through Menopause With Keto Green and IF

09:00  - Stages Of Hormonal Change; What Is Normal?

12:35 -  It Takes More Than Hormones To Fix Our Hormones; All Of The Hormones At Play  

15:30 - BEAUTY COUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order!

17:30 - Living In A Modern World And It's Effect On Hormones

22:10 - Stress Management In This Uncertain Time

24:00 - Irritability On A Standard Keto Diet; Urine pH And Chronic Disease

27:15 - Dr. Cabeca's Approach To Keto; Green Food And Importance Of Alkalinity

29:55 - Dirty Keto Vs Keto Green

31:35 - Alkalinizing Your Body

36:00 - Listener Q&A: Anjali & Teegan  - Is IF Safe For Women, Fertility, Hormonal Balance

Get The Hormone Fix: The natural way to balance your hormones, burn fat and alleviate the symptoms of the perimenopause, the menopause and beyond

Prolonged Nightly Fasting and Breast Cancer Prognosis

41:05 - Listener Q&A: Melissa  - Which IF Window Is Right For Women?

46:00 - Breaking Through A Plateau With Keto Green

Get Keto-Green 16: The Fat-Burning Power of Ketogenic Eating + The Nourishing Strength of Alkaline Foods = Rapid Weight Loss and Hormone Balance

52:10 - BLUBLOX: Go To blublox.com And Use The Code ifpodcast For 15% Off!

54:00 - Listener Q&A: Stacy  - What Effect Does IF Have On Sex, Sexual Hormones, And Sex Drive?

56:30 - Supplementing With Hormones; Is There A Benefit?

1:00:00 - Toxins And Endocrine Disruptors In Beauty Products

STUFF WE LIKE

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

LINKS

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, and/or Gin's Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast

Intermittent Fasting Stories

More on Melanie: MelanieAvalon.com  

More on Gin: GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Feb 25

Episode 97: All About Hormones With Dr. Anna Cabeca: IF And Menstrual Cycles, Menopause, The Keto Green Diet, The Importance Of Alkalinity, The Role Of Stress, Insulin/Cortisol/Oxytocin, And More!

Diet Mindsets , Hormones , Intermittent Fasting , Metabolism

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

 Subscribe For Updates HERE!

Welcome to Episode 97 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

Dr. Anna Cabeca, a triple board certified, Emory University trained physician and hormone expert was diagnosed with early menopause at age 38. Devastated, she set out on a personal wellness journey to reverse her menopause side effects, which resulted in her delivery of a healthy baby girl at the age of 41.After experiencing her own health successes, Dr. Cabeca began counseling others, ultimately changing the lives of thousands of women across the globe. Her new book The Hormone Fix and other empowering transformation programs have helped women of all ages become their best selves again. Her successful line of all-natural products features the alkaline superfoods drink Mighty Maca® PLUS and the rejuvenating vulvar cream Julva®.Recently, Dr. Cabeca was named “2018 Innovator of the Year” by Mindshare Collaborative, the premier community for health and wellness influencers and entrepreneurs. In 2017, the Age Management Medicine Group presented her the prestigious Alan P. Mintz Award for Clinical Excellence.

You can discover more about Dr. Cabeca at DrAnnaCabeca.com and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Get The Hormone Fix: Burn Fat Naturally, Boost Energy, Sleep Better, and Stop Hot Flashes, the Keto-Green Way!

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

Australis Barramundi: Melanie's FAVORITE fish!! Australis utilizes sustainable practices to raise delicious barramundi fish with fantastic omega-3 levels, tested to be free of mercury and other toxins! They raise their fish responsibly, paying the utmost care to animal health, employee safety, and environmental sustainability, flash freezing their fish at peak freshness! Their barramundi are easy to cook, and even kids love the mild and buttery taste! You can find Australis Barramundi in the freezer section of many fine grocery stores, including Whole Foods! Check out the betterfish.com for more information, and specifically www.thebetterfish.com/why-barramundi for all the awesome benefits! You can also follow Australis: @thebetterfish on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook! Go To Better.Fish/ifpodcast For An In Store Coupon!

Joovv Red Light Therapy: Like intermittent fasting, red light therapy can benefit the body on so many levels. It works on the mitochondrial level to help your cells generate more energy! Red light can help you burn fat (including targeted fat burning and stubborn fat!), contour your body, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, produce collagen for epic skin, support muscle recovery, reduce joint pain and inflammation, combat fatigue, help you sleep better, improve mood, and so much more!! Use The Link Joovv.coom/IFPodcast with the code IFPODCAST for a free gift!

BioOptimizers: A company whose mission is to fix your digestion! They make a range of awesome supplements, including digestive and proteolytic enzymes, gluten-hacks, a "one size fits all" superstar probiotoic, HCL, and more! Check out the interviews we had with their founder, Wade Lightheart, in episodes 74 and 84! Use The Link BiOptimizers.com/ifpodcast With The Code ifpodcast, To Save 20% On All BiOptimizer Products!!

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

SHOW NOTES

01:05 - AUSTRALIS BARRAMUNDI: Go To Better.Fish/ifpodcast For An In Store Coupon!

01:05 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Use The Link BiOptimizers.com/IFPODCAST With The Code IFPODCAST For 20% Off!

5:00 - Dr. Anna Cabeca's Personal Journey: Addressing Hormonal Issues And Reversing Menopause 

10:30 - Is Weight Gain Inevitable With Age?

11:00 - The Importance of Insulin Sensitivity And Ketosis 

11:30 - is IF Detrimental for Women? How Fasting Affects Hormones - Insulin, Cortisol, And Oxytocin 

14:10 - The Ideal IF Windows

14:55 - Extended Fasting 

17:30 - Why Do Women Face So Many Hormonal Issues Today?

19:40 - The Role Of Bioidentical Hormones

20:00 - Stress And Hormonal Disarray (Cortisol, Stress Perception, And Tips To Deal!) 

25:43 - JOOVV RED LIGHT THERAPY DEVICES:  Use The Link Joovv.com/IFPodcast With The Code IFPODCAST For A Free Gift!

26:45 - Listener Q&A: Michelle  - Can Hormones Stop Fat Burning? Is It Ever Too Late To Address Hormones?

30:40 - The Importance Of Testing (Urine PH, Thyroid, Other Factors)

37:55 - Is Ketosis A Natural State To Be In? And The Role Of Alkalinity In Keto!

48:12 - Listener Q&A: Jennifer - Is IF Not As Beneficial For Women As Men? Are There Negative Effects?

48:27 - Listener Q&A: Carina - Is There A Wrong Way To Do IF For Women? 

37:55 - Is Ketosis A Natural State To Be In?

53:45 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - Can Fasting Affect Your Period?

54:10 - Listener Q&A: Madison: Should You Be Worried By Changes In Your Cycle With IF?

1:00:00 - Get The Hormone Fix: Burn Fat Naturally, Boost Energy, Sleep Better, and Stop Hot Flashes, the Keto-Green Way!

1:01:40 - LISTEN TO US ON HIMALAYA! Download the free Himalaya App (www.himalaya.fm) to FINALLY keep all your podcasts in one place, follow your favorites, make playlists, leave comments, and more! And with Himalaya, you can LISTEN TO OUR PODCAST 24 HOURS IN ADVANCE!! 

STUFF WE LIKE

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

REFERENCES

 Mediterranean Way of Drinking and Longevity

LINKS

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, and/or Gin's Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle

More on Melanie: MelanieAvalon.com  

More on Gin: GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Nov 27

Episode 293: Holiday Feasting, Liquid Chlorophyll, Iron Supplementation, Anti-Inflammatory Foods, Sauna, Signs of Ketosis, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 293 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 Cynthia Thurlow, author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging.

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

BUTCHERBOX: Grass-Fed Beef, Organic Chicken, Heritage Pork, Wild-Caught Seafood: Nutrient-Rich, Raised Sustainably The Way Nature Intended, And Shipped Straight To Your Door! For A Limited Time Go To Butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get Free Ground Beef For Life And $20 Off Your First Order!!

FEALS: Feals makes CBD oil which satisfies ALL of Melanie's stringent criteria: it's premium, full spectrum, organic, tested, pure CBD in MCT oil! It's delivered directly to your doorstep. CBD supports the body's natural cannabinoid system, and can address an array of issues, from sleep to stress to chronic pain, and more!
Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

Bon Charge: Overexposure To Blue Light In Our Modern Environments Can Lead To Increased Anxiety, Stress, Headaches, Insomnia, And Other Health Conditions. Unlike Many “Blue Light Blocking” Glasses On The Market, Bon Charge Provides Glasses That Block The Exact Blue Wavelengths You Need To Regulate Sleep, Reduce Anxiety, And Much More! They Also Provide Different Types Of Glasses For The Time Of Day, Season, And Your Personal Electronic And Light Exposure! Go To boncharge.com For A Black Friday Sale with a massive 25% off sitewide until 30th November.

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get Free Ground Beef for Life and $20 off your first order!!

4:10 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At melanieavalon.com/beautycounter or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow And Use The Code CLEANFORALL20 For 20% Off PLUS Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: Melanieavalon.Com/Beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

18:50 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

21:30 - Listener Q&A: Kasi - Liquid Chlorophyll during fast // Window Flexibility // Anti-Inflammatory Foods

The Melanie Avalon biohacking Podcast Episode #43 - Teri Cochrane

Episode 56: The Cochrane Method and Bioindividuality

Ep. 201-The Connection Between Genes, Detoxification, Hormones, and Immune Function

Go to melanieavalon.com/ancestral and use the code AVALON10 for 10% off Ancestral supplements!

Go To melanieavalon.com/aura And Use The Code AVALON For 10% Off Aura Glutathione!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #149 - Chris Masterjohn

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #61 - Dr. Cate Shanahan

44:35 - BON CHARGE: Go To boncharge.com For A Black Friday Sale with a massive 25% off sitewide until 30th November!

46:55 - Listener Q&A: Bruce - Thanks for all you do

Why Combine Sauna and Fasting

SUNLIGHTEN: Get Up To $200 Off AND $99 Shipping (Regularly $598) With The Code MelanieAvalon At MelanieAvalon.Com/Sunlighten. Forward Your Proof Of Purchase To Podcast@MelanieAvalon.com, To Receive A Signed Copy Of What When Wine!

57:30 - Listener Q&A: Justine - signs of ketosis

Lumen, Biosense & CGMs: Carbs, Fat, Ketones & Blood Sugar (Melanie Avalon)

get $20 off of Biosense. If you go to melanieavalon.com/biosense and use the coupon AVALON20

Our content does not constitute an attempt to practice medicine, and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please consult a qualified health care provider for medical advice and answers to personal health questions.

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 293 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, biohacker and 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, Cynthia Thurlow, Nurse Practitioner and author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: A 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and cynthiathurlow.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this show do not constitute medical advice or treatment and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. So, pour yourself a mug of black coffee, a cup of tea, or even a glass of wine if it's that time and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

Hi friends, I'm about to tell you how you can get free grass-fed, grass-finished beef for life plus $20 off, yes free grass-fed, grass-finished ground beef for life plus $20 off. We are so, so honored to be sponsored by ButcherBox. They make it so, so easy to get high quality humanely raised meat that you can trust. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage breed pork, that’s really hard to find by the way, and wild-caught sustainable and responsible seafood shipped directly to your door. When you become a member, you're joining a community focused on doing what's better for everyone. That includes caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect, and enjoying deliciously better meals together. There is a lot of confusion out there when it comes to transparency regarding grazing practices, what is actually in our food, how animals are being treated. I did so much research on ButcherBox, you can actually check out my blog post all about it at melanieavalon.com/butcherbox. But I am so grateful for all of the information that I learned about their company, all of their beef is 100% grass-fed and grass-finished. That's really hard to find. They work personally with all the farmers to truly support the regenerative agriculture system. I also did an interview with Robb Wolf on my show, The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, all about the massive importance of supporting regenerative agriculture for the sustainability of not only ourselves but the planet. This is so important to me. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. 

If you recently saw a documentary on Netflix called Seaspiracy, you might be a little bit nervous about eating seafood. Now, I understand why ButcherBox makes it so, so clear and important about how they work with the seafood industry. Everything is checked for transparency, for quality, and for sustainable raising practices you want their seafood. The value is incredible, the average cost is actually less than $6 per meal and it's so easy. Everything ships directly to your door. I am a huge steak lover. Every time I go to a restaurant, I usually order the steak. Oh, my goodness, the ButcherBox steaks are amazing. I remember the first time I had one and I just thought, “This is honestly one of the best steaks I've ever had in my entire life.” On top of that, did you know that the fatty acid profile of grass-fed, grass-finished steaks is much healthier for you than conventional steaks? And their bacon, for example, is from pastured pork, and sugar and nitrate free. How hard is that to find? And ButcherBox has an incredible deal for our audience. For a limited time, you can get free grass-fed grass-finished ground beef for life in every box of your subscription plus $20 off, yes, new members can get free grass-fed grass-finished ground beef for life plus $20 off when you go to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. That's butcherbox.com/ifpodcast for free grass-fed grass-finished ground beef for life plus $20 off and we'll put all this information in the show notes. 

And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? When it comes to weight loss, we focus a lot on what and when we eat. It makes sense because these foods affect our hormones and how our bodies store and burn fat. But do you know what is possibly one of the most influential factors in weight gain? It's not your food and it's not fasting, it's actually our skincare and makeup. As it turns out, Europe has banned over a thousand compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup in the US due to their toxicity. These include endocrine disrupters which mess with your hormones, carcinogens linked to cancer, and obesogens which literally can cause your body to store and gain weight. Basically, when we're using conventional skincare and makeup, we are giving these obesogenic compounds direct access to our bloodstream. And then in our bodies, studies have shown they do things like reduce our satiety hormones, increase our hunger hormones, make fat cells more likely to store fat, more resistant to burning fat, and so much more. If you have stubborn fat, friends, your skincare and makeup may be playing a role in that. Beyond weight gain and weight loss, these compounds have very detrimental effects on our health and they affect the health of our future generations. That's because ladies when we have babies, a huge percent of those toxic compounds go through the placenta into the newborn. It is so, so shocking and the effects last for years.

Conventional lipstick, for example, often tests high in lead and the half-life of lead is up to 30 years. That means, when you put on some conventional lipstick, 30 years later, maybe half of that lead has left your bones. On top of that, there is essentially no regulation of these products on the shelves. That's why it's up to us to choose brands that are changing this. The brand that is working the hardest to do this is Beautycounter. They were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, so, you can truly feel good about what you put on. And friends, these products really, really work. They are incredible. They have counter time for anti-aging, counter match for normal skin, counter control for acne and oily prone, and counter start for sensitive. I use their Overnight Resurfacing Peel and vitamin C serum every single night of my life. And their makeup is amazing. Check out my Instagram to see what it looks like. Tina Fey, even wore all Beautycounter makeup when she hosted The Golden Globes. So, yes, it is high-definition camera ready. They have so many other products, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, products for babies, and so much more. You can shop with us at beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. Also, make sure to get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. I give away a lot of free things on that list. So, definitely check it out. You can join me in my Facebook group, Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare with Melanie Avalon. People share their experiences, ask questions, give product reviews, and I do a giveaway every single week in that group as well. 

And lastly, if you're thinking of making Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare, a part of your future like we have, we definitely recommend becoming a Band of Beauty member. It's sort of 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. It is totally, completely worth it. So, again, to shop with us, go to beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 293 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Cynthia Thurlow.

Cynthia Thurlow: Hey, Melanie, how are you?

Melanie Avalon: I'm good, I just checked when this is going to air. I wish I could ask you, how was your Thanksgiving but it has not happened as of right now. But I am super curious since this is the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. How do you tackle Thanksgiving with fasting?

Cynthia Thurlow: This year is a good example of--it's just the four of us, which I'm super excited about because it's really only the second holiday we've spent in our new home. I don't alter a whole lot to be honest with you, we eat earlier in the day, we usually eat by 3 or 4 o'clock. My teenagers will go back for seconds a few hours later, but I'm generally not hungry. I may have like a light meal to break my fast and then really lean into protein and veggies and that's one of the few times in the year I will enjoy pie like I make a really good apple pie. And there's something about even gluten-free crust that I love which is why I don't normally eat pie, but I will allow myself to enjoy and savor every single bite.

I think that I don't treat Thanksgiving any differently than really any other day because I don't alter the way I eat too much. And it's not to say that I can't, I just don't feel good when I eat certain types of foods. So, my kids get a lot of the starchy stuff like stuffing and potatoes and I'm the one that leans into like Brussel sprouts and other things that we might have alongside, the last couple of years we've been doing tenderloin and not turkey but ButcherBox very nicely sent me a lovely turkey. So, we will be having some turkey and some tenderloin for Thanksgiving.

But it's also the one holiday that my husband gets really into and wants to make everything himself. All these women listening, they're like, "Oh my gosh, I wish my husband would do that." He gets a little controlling about his kitchen on Thanksgiving, I really play an ancillary role on Thanksgiving and I'm completely fine with that because he's a really good cook. But it's sometimes an odd dynamic because I think we're kind of conditioned as a society that it's the woman in the kitchen all day long. And actually, it's my husband like up early for the bird and he's all about making the stuffing. And every year he perfects his stuffing and he makes this is horrible, Chex Mix. And so, Chex Mix is like a crack in our house, my husband and my kids will eat it till it is gone. But I jokingly tell them, they need a feed bag just to put the strap on over the back of their neck and just let them eat it all day long, and they could not be happier. There's a lot of feasting in our house. It's usually a pretty relaxed day. How about you?

Melanie Avalon: Similar to you, I personally don't really adjust much. Because doing my one-meal-a-day approach that I do. I literally am feasting already every single day. And, for example, it was my birthday this week, and a friend came in town and we went to dinner. And I got two entrees. It was because I wanted to-- I couldn't decide, I wanted both steak and fish, so he was like just get both. But I was like, "Okay, I'll have like a bite of the steak and eat the fish, but I ate all of it." [laughs] which was fabulous. And that's an addition to the appetizers and all of that. But the point being is, I am so accustomed to eating large amounts of meat at night and protein, so on Thanksgiving nothing really changes much because the foods I want to eat what you were saying about, the foods that make you feel good and the foods that don't, I would like to eat a lot of other different foods that would also taste good, but they would also make me feel not so well. Or I can eat the foods that taste just as good to me but make me feel great. On Thanksgiving, I would still do my one-meal-a-day type thing and just eat a ton of Turkey as my meat.

Cynthia Thurlow: And I think it's interesting because for me personally, this is what my life has evolved into. And I'm completely happy in the space. But I do know, when we have like family or friend's events, people always kind of look at me and they're like, "Well, you're not going to have this and you're not going to have that? And I'm like, "No, because I actually don't feel good when I eat X or Y. And I'm totally fine with you eating X or Y. It's just not what I'm leaning into. I think it's also like being respectful. Sometimes it can be very triggering when people see you eat a particular way, then I always say there's no judgment, I just know that I'm at a stage in my life where it's not worth it for me to eat foods that make me feel badly. Like if I were to have a couple of glasses of wine, guess what my sleep is going to be terrible. I'm going to get hot sweats, night sweats, and I'm going to wake up in the morning and my Oura Ring is going to be barking at me.

From my perspective, it's a cost-benefit, like what makes me feel good, what allows me to wake up on the day after Thanksgiving, and whether we're doing a 5k, we try to do things that are active, and you're asking what the prevailing strategy is, move my body, try to lift if not on Thanksgiving, the day before or the day after, stay really well hydrated, and then choose the things that you want to splurge on and typically mine is apple pie. [laughs] I love apple pie, I love apples in general. But I love, I make a really good apple pie. It's very basic, but it's really good, and my kids laugh because I'll stand there at the counter, and I'm just eating the crust. Like I wouldn't normally eat crust I am like, "Oh, this is good."

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, one of the things I really like about fasting though, in general, with the holidays, like before fasting, I would have a lot of fear. I would love the holidays and I would love the food, but I would have a lot of dread or concern about overeating, weight gain, overindulging, and it was this weird blend of the pure excitement and joy of the food and also dreading the aftermath. And now I never really experience that, like holidays I just genuinely look forward to the whole food experience with minimal, I mean really honestly, no negative effects.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I mean, to me, especially because I have teenagers and I recognize that time is fleeting with them. I've always loved our nuclear family and prior to the pandemic, we always spent holidays with our extended family. And now things have changed a little bit and that's okay. But for me, it's really the joy of having conversations with my kids because as teenagers they spend a lot of time connecting with their friends or disconnecting from their parents. And so, for me we get into these discussions of "Are we going to do like a Harry Potter marathon, are we going to do Lord of the Rings, which that usually sends my kids into orbit?" Trying to find ways that we can connect after eating, "Are we going to play football or am I going to watch them play football?" By just finding things that we can do to connect together that don't per se disconnect us more, because I think it's very easy in our culture to be around other humans but be so disconnected like people that are on their phones constantly. And I'm certainly not perfect. I'm not by any means am I suggesting that, but I really try on holidays to be very connected and very present. And that to me is something I'm much more cognizant of now than maybe I was 10 years ago with my kids.

Melanie Avalon: Have you ever used one of those phone jail things?

Cynthia Thurlow: Not per se, although the other day, interestingly enough, my 15-year-old who is my more challenging child I will say, came home from some team practice. I know his blood sugar was low because he was hangry, he was just really grumpy. I had asked him to help take the dogs out and I got a rash of reaction to that. And because he was so disrespectful, I just said, "Well, I have your phone, and so I hid his phone for two days." So yes, we do have phone jail but said child is pretty clever and so he found his phone in the midst of phone jail and took it. And then he got another day added on to not having a phone. So, yes, we do Institute phone jail but not per se at the table. Usually, phone jail is when an infraction has been incurred and I'm trying to think of what will hurt him the most, [laughter] what is going to be the most unpleasant punishment I can give him. I'll just take your phone, and he feels like he's lost an appendage.

Melanie Avalon: I was going to talk about one other thing, but instead I'll save it for next week. And instead, I have to comment on the phone. When I was driving to dinner--Has your phone SIM card ever decided it's not there? Like your phone is like "can't find SIM card?"

Cynthia Thurlow: No.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. It's crazy. Basically, your phone loses all capability, it can't be a phone, it can't make calls, it can't find the internet, and I was driving and I just realized how dependent we are on our phones because I was all dressed up and had all my stuff. And I was halfway to Midtown Atlanta. And my phone was not getting the internet. And I was like, "I don't know how to find this hotel." I don't know how to get there [laughs]. I was like what am I going to do? Pull off to a gas station and be like, how do I get to [laughs] Four Seasons, it was crazy, it made me realize just how reliant we are and then I just felt so useless that I was not going to be able to navigate, somewhere where I had gone before multiple times.

Cynthia Thurlow: I will just interject that. My mom lives in a rural part of Maryland on a beautiful lake and when I was coming back most recently, the way that I come from Western Maryland to get back to Virginia, I have to go through West Virginia for a brief scooch amount of time. Well, I went from having ways to having no ways, and then not knowing where I was because I had only gone this route once before. And at one point, I was driving for an hour with no ways, no Wi-Fi, no nothing.

Melanie Avalon: Did you feel naked? I felt so naked. "Oh, I felt naked."

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I was like contemplating how do I find a police station and talk to them about the fact that I didn't think to print out directions because why would I have needed them? You start to realize how dependent we are on technology for sure.

Melanie Avalon: It's the craziest feeling and I was like, "Oh, this is what it was like back in the day." I bet people were a lot better with keeping appointments. Because if you don't show up, I was like "They're going to think I'm dead."

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I was explaining to my kids, we used to have MapQuest or we used to have these little Garmin's in our cars, and you would update them periodically, and my kids were like, what? And I was like, "Yes, you had to print things out or write them out." I was like, "That's how old school mom and dad are?

Melanie Avalon: When I was growing up had to print out from MapQuest. So good times.

Cynthia Thurlow: I'm glad to know you recall MapQuest.

Melanie Avalon: I was right on the cusp.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. We represent many generations on this podcast.

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Melanie Avalon: Would you like to jump into everything for today?

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: To start things off, we have some questions actually four questions that we can do rapid fire and they are from Casey. The subject is "Liquid chlorophyll during the fast, window flexibility, anti-inflammatory foods." And Casey says, "I have a few questions shared here." Number one, can I consume liquid chlorophyll in my water while in a fasted state or is this a no, no?"

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, well, I mean it's a plant. I think it depends on how it's processed because chlorophyll does not taste good and most chlorophyll that I have used with patients has some sugar, dextrose, etc., in it to make it palatable. In most instances, if you're looking at an ingredient list, it very likely has sweeteners in it and therefore I would not recommend that for a clean fast. Do you have an opinion?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, especially after interviewing. I know you are friends with Teri Cochrane, she's wonderful. She wrote a book called, is it Wildatarian?

Cynthia Thurlow: Wildatarian? Yep.

Melanie Avalon:  I had her on The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. You've probably had her on your show as well, I'm guessing?

Cynthia Thurlow: I have, twice.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. She has fascinating thoughts on chlorophyll supplementation. I searched high and low to find a chlorophyll-- like a liquid chlorophyll supplement that didn't have lot of additives. The closest I could find was, it's mostly pure chlorophyll but has glycerin. It doesn't taste sweet. It tastes very grassy actually. But to be on the safe side, I would always just kind of have it to open my window. The chlorophyll itself is not a problem. But like Cynthia said, it's hard to find-- maybe I should make a chlorophyll. "Oh, my goodness." Okay, friends, stay tuned. I do think it's really wonderful. I would err on the side of keeping it in your eating window unless you can find a pure version, which, good luck.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's hard to find and it doesn't taste good. That's actually why oftentimes it is sweetened. I oftentimes will recommend chlorophyll for constipation.

Melanie Avalon: Hmm, nice. Teri recommends it for actually iron levels.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes, I love Teri. I've had her on the podcast twice. And she always brings such a unique lens to looking at health and wellness, really a unique lens, like the Cochrane Method is her trademarked method and I've learned so much through her.

Melanie Avalon: She's really wonderful. Because she's the one who talks about the amyloid formation in conventional agriculture. I bring this up every time I interview somebody in the-- I don't know what words to use, I just brought it up the other day, interviewing the founders of regenerative pastures, which is kind of like a ButcherBox system, but they're US based only and they have a lot of really amazing options. But actually, that interview was amazing, but anytime I've interviewed somebody where we're talking about like conventional agriculture versus regenerative and holistic, I bring up Teri's theory, which basically is that the stress levels of the raising conditions create these truncated proteins and conventional meat that has a very inflammatory potential, which nobody else is talking about. So, I find that very cool.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, and she's not a big fan of chicken and a few other things, but chicken is, I think the basis of a lot of people's diets, and by no means am I telling everyone to panic and stop eating chicken. But just to give it some pause and think that has a lot to do with her desire to encourage people to eat more wildatarian proteins, she certainly has had a huge influence on us. We got very creative during the pandemic.

Melanie Avalon: She's amazing. Okay, so much for rapid fire. Casey's, second question, she has some questions about supplements taken in the fasted state or during the eating window. We can just go through these, D3, B12, iron, so D3?

Cynthia Thurlow: Fat-soluble vitamins, vitamins A, D, E, and K, I generally recommend that you take with a meal so that they can slow the absorption, B12 provided that it's clean. That to me is benign. Iron, I generally like people to take with food for a variety of reasons. But I understand why people ask these questions because they are trying to simplify their lives, but I would say iron and D3 taken in a fed state, B12 or B vitamins I think are fine provided that they're clean taken in a non-fed state. What do you think?

Melanie Avalon: Agreed, the only caveat I would provide B12 similar to chlorophyll, it is water soluble, so it can be taken completely fasted but it can also be hard to find versions without the additives, they're usually always flavored, and also with B12, it can be really important, especially given your MTHFR status to get a properly methylated form, so Methylcobalamin version. And then my iron caveat would be-- and I struggle with iron regulation, really bad, I just don't seem to make ferritin, I do but there's just some issue there with my conversion, I think. I am very in tune with iron supplementation. I personally will use desiccated spleen as well as kidney which has some iron, I use ancestral supplements, I do have a code for them. If you go to melanieavalon.com/ancestral, the code AVALON10 will get you 10% off. I take their kidney every night, I take their spleen a few times a week and I take that with food. I don't take the spleen every day because I found-- researched this and I've talked with my hematologist about it. If you take iron supplements constantly trying to up your iron level, your iron actually has an iron regulation system where it downregulates its absorption if you're taking in a lot consistently. On the contrary, if you're not taking a lot, it will upregulate its iron absorption. It can be nice to do a punctuated approach.

Another option is chelated Iron because iron can be very constipating. I love Elle Russ-- I'm actually having her on my show for the third time coming up soon and I was just recently on her show The Elle Russ Show. She is very in tune with iron supplementation because it can really relate to thyroid issues. And she's a big fan of Chelated Iron by Bluebonnet and that has to be taken on an empty stomach. The reviews for that are very, very positive for people saying they are able to raise their iron and don't get constipated. So, that's another option, but that would be on an empty stomach.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, the Chelated Iron is really key. I think for many years I was on Chelated Iron and there's nothing worse than being put on iron. And then if you're not constipated, then all of a sudden you can't go to the bathroom. So, Chelated Iron tends to be much easier on the gut. And I would agree with you that anemia in general and low ferritin levels, low iron levels can be very confounding. And it's not at all uncommon for women really at any stage of life to have issues surrounding this, so a commonly recommended supplement.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the iron issues are one of the banes of my existence? I'm really excited actually because I'm going to be interviewing Morley Robbins for his book, Cu-RE Your Fatigue, The Root Cause and How To Fix it On Your Own. And apparently, it's mostly about iron regulation. I'm excited to see what I learn about that.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, it's interesting, your podcast about glutathione came out today. And I was like, "Oh," I'm knee-deep in podcast prep for two podcasts next week. But I was like, I really need to listen to that.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, it's so good. I was on the fence about glutathione IVs and glutathione pushes. Now I'm fairly convinced they're a waste. It's just in and out of your body and it doesn't even get absorbed really. I don't know if he's a doctor, I think he's just a researcher and a pharmacist, not just? But I think he's a researcher and a pharmacist. He wrote a book called The Glutathione Revolution. He does have his own proprietary topical glutathione where they have studies showing how it is absorbed in the half-life in the body. I've been using that every single day and night since reading the book and interviewing him, I'm sold. I think glutathione is so important, supporting it naturally, and then if you supplement using his version, I feel like I'm just giving all the codes. But his version that I've been using is melanieavalon.com/auro A-U-R-O is his brand, and then the code MELANIEAVALON should get you a discount.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, it's interesting because Teri Cochrane is not a fan of IV pushes or IV glutathione drips. As we keep plugging Teri Cochrane that's definitely really aligned with my conversations I've had with her. But I'll definitely have to dive into that podcast.

Melanie Avalon: Let me know what you think. I think I wanted to believe it, because, you want to think, "Oh, I can get some glutathione IVs or pushes and do some good," but it's really like I said, in and out. And then after reading it, I reached out to my friend James Clement, he wrote a book called The Switch, and he's a dear friend. And I really, really respect him. And I really feel like I can always get a very unbiased perspective because he does have a book, but he's not selling anything. He runs a lab that studies longevity. I asked him and he's like, yeah, there's no point in taking glutathione, it was when I was actually feeling really sick. And I was texting him. I was like, "What do I do? Try to get NAD." I was like, "I'm going to go get glutathione" and he's like, "Don't get the glutathione, it's not going to help." So, tangents.

Okay, and then another question from Casey, she said, "She's considering a window of 12 to 8 o'clock, but she feels on a Saturday or weekend that she might need more flexibility due to long runs or social engagements." So you have recommendations on timing to make the weekends work?

Cynthia Thurlow: One of the key aspects of intermittent fasting is flexibility. I'd really encourage you to experiment, maybe you're going to have a wider feeding window on a weekend, maybe you'll have a shorter fasting window on a weekend. I think that the key is really kind of leaning into what makes the most sense for you. I know that pre-pandemic I definitely was much more flexible in the weekends, because we were oftentimes going out or had events, and I couldn't per se time when I was eating or when I wasn't eating, it was oftentimes dependent on other people's schedules. I would say experiment to see what feels good, maybe if you're doing longer runs, you're going to want to break your fast earlier. Maybe if you're going out to dinner, you are going to have a wider feeding window. And that's completely fine and I do encourage people to change up what they're doing. Our bodies get very accustomed to eating the same foods, having the same fasting windows. And so, I do like variety. How about you? Do you have any different ways of doing things on the weekend?

Melanie Avalon: Well, first of all, I love your answer. And that's the answer is basically going to suggest which is just-- I think it's actually-- Especially if you have a regimented window during the week, it's a great time to have some flexibility, and actually, you said change things up, keep your body guessing. Well, I do a completely different window. If I was doing her window, I probably would adjust it a little bit where I might just open it a little bit later and keep it open later. Assuming that you're having social engagements at night dinners, things like that. For me personally, I really honestly do the same window every single night. I don't need to adjust because it literally fits in almost every situation.

The only time it wouldn't fit would be if I had to go to an early dinner. And then honestly, I probably just wouldn't eat. If there's one thing I won't do, I don't eat if I'm not hungry, I don't eat just to be social, I don't enjoy it. So, if that's the case, I usually would just drink and then eat later which interestingly, another tangent, this might be controversial, but they'll often say to have alcohol with food to slow the absorption and have a better effect on your body. I find the only time I'm really drinking with food is when I am having dinner out because normally, I drink before eating. And I find that I do a lot better that way drinking before because I feel like my body processes the alcohol completely and then it's not impeding or competing with the dinner. And I find when I have wine with food, I feel like the alcohol lasts longer in my system. So, just a random thought.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I'm definitely one of those people that I had to drink with food because if I didn't, I would feel the effects pretty strongly. [laughs] I would be the person who would be like, "Uh-oh," I don't feel so great.

Melanie Avalon: Actually, maybe that's why I like it more not because I like feeling crazy, I can drink less and have the drinking experience compared to if I'm having it with food, I would maybe drink more.

Cynthia Thurlow: You know, what's interesting is that I always assumed that because I was the type of person, I could never really drink a lot. What's unique about my body, I don't make enough alcohol dehydrogenase to break this down properly or are my detoxification pathways just not optimized? I mean those are the things I used to spend time thinking about. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I've done my genetic data and one of the systems that I ran it through, I know I've said this on the podcast before, but I don't know if I've said it when I was with you. It basically looked at your, "Oh, I think it was the SelfDecode report. It was the food one," and it showed you like all these different food options, like carbs, I don't know, there was like four food-related things, and there was alcohol, I was bad with everything food related and great with alcohol. Alcohol was like green and then everything else food related was like red, red, red. [laughs]

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, it's interesting because I did do genetic testing over the summer with Kristina Hess and that's an area of nutrigenomics, that's her area of expertise. Things that were consistent, and validating were things like, "Do you like lean meat or fatty meat?" I was like, "Oh, lean meat all the way. I don't feel good when I eat fatty meat." And we were going through the report and she was like, "I can see where that is, I can see where you're very athletic, I can see that you're someone that actually would tolerate a little bit of dairy, you can actually tolerate a little bit of alcohol." And I was like, "That's interesting," because it hasn't been my own experience. But we can't consider the fact that or we need to consider why bio-individuality is such an important aspect of whether we're leading into this next question talking about inflammatory foods. For each one of us that could look very different and I know I don't think I ever perceived the foods I no longer consume now were bothersome even 15 or 20 years ago. And so, just understanding that there's the genetics piece plus exposure piece, and they can all play a role in how we feel when we eat certain foods.

Melanie Avalon: I think that's so key and speaking to that it's so interesting when you do pay more attention and "Clean up what you're eating," how you do notice, "Well, I don't really eat foods that bother me now." But if I were too, I really notice and I just look back at my old self and I think about everything that I was eating and how I didn't even notice because I think it was an overall systemic inflammation. So, you didn't really pick up on any one signal from food. But yeah, so Casey's last question which you hinted at. She says, "What are some of your top anti-inflammatory foods? What are the foods you'd recommend avoiding that are most inflammatory?"

Cynthia Thurlow: When I think about top anti-inflammatory foods, I really think about phytonutrient dense foods. When you hear the term eat the rainbow, I think about green leafy vegetables, I think about berries, especially blueberries, raspberries, blackberries. I think a great deal about medicinal mushrooms, and no I'm not talking about mushrooms that are psychedelic. I think about curcumin which is a component of turmeric. I think a great deal about polyphenols that you get in green tea and bitter teas and black coffee, preferably mold-free. The most inflammatory foods in my estimation are seed oils and highly processed hyperpalatable foods, gluten, dairy, in particular people that are susceptible to that, sometimes grains, processed sugars, alcohol, soy, so it really depends, just like Melanie was saying she feels differently when she has alcohol on an empty stomach versus in a fed state. Bio-individuality but seed oils are the most inflammatory foods worth eliminating if you do nothing else. Read labels, ask when you go to restaurants, I think seed oils down to a cellular level the most damaging food like substances that most of us consume unknowingly in many ways. How about you?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, we have very similar lists. So actually, my big one for anti-inflammatory isn't so much a specific food as it is an approach to the amino acid profiles of foods. In particular, because there are nine essential amino acids and some of those are more growth-promoting and can be inflammatory in high amounts, particularly things like methionine, which is really high in muscle meats, compared to "more anti-inflammatory amino acids," things like glycine. So, fish, for example, tends to be a more and I'm using quotes because inflammation itself is so complicated and nuanced and in a way, it's hard to really deconstruct what is inflammatory and what's anti-inflammatory, but in general, the amino acid profile of fish tends to be a "more anti-inflammatory amino acid profile" than something like muscle meat and then the amino acid profile of more gelatinous cuts of red meat tend to be more anti-inflammatory. That is actually a large reason that I make shellfish and fish basically the foundation of my protein, it's the reason I eat so many scallops because I read this one study that looked at the inflammatory potential, I think it looked at like liver enzymes or the effect on the liver in particular and it looked at chicken, cod which is fish, scallops and then one more, I'll have to find the study and put this in the show notes. But the effect of scallops, like the anti-inflammatory potential was insane. After I read that I'm eating scallops all the time.

Cynthia Thurlow: You want to know, it's one of the few foods my husband hates. So like, "I can only really eat scallops when I'm in restaurants because he dislikes them that much, but I actually really enjoy them."

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love those scallops as you guys know. Yeah, having scallops, for example, would be a pretty anti-inflammatory protein. And then it's not just the amino acids as a benefit of fish, also the omega-3, omega-6 ratio. And this is another thing where it's not so much take omega-3 because it's anti-inflammatory, I think what's more important is the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 because we need both. And we just want the ratio to be more in favor of the omega-3 side. I've seen different amounts when they say hunter-gatherers ate omega-3 to omega-6 ratio of between 1:1 to I think between 4:1, which, sorry omega-3 to omega-6, yes, 4:1, or wait it'd be another way around? Probably the other way around. In any case, today, the ratio tends to be I think it can be like 20 or 30:1, it's crazy.

And again, a lot of people will go the route of like, "Oh, well, high dose the fish oil, eat all the salmon." I think it's more about the ratio, I don't think we necessarily need a huge amount of these omega-3s and omega-6s in our diets, but we want that ratio to be more ant-inflammatory than inflammatory. Although if you want a really nuanced conversation on this, which is going to add a lot of caveats, listen to my interview with Chris Masterjohn, because we dive deep into this and he actually has a much more complicated view, which contradicts a little bit about what I said, but it still stands that the omega-3 to omega-6 ratio I think is important.

And then on top of that some things that Cynthia mentioned, a lot of spices can be really anti-inflammatory. She mentioned curcumin that's found in turmeric, I eat so much turmeric every single night. I eat a lot of ginger.

Cynthia Thurlow: I love ginger.

Melanie Avalon: I love ginger, I love turmeric and ginger. They are the two "spices" because I know ginger is a root. I just gravitate towards them like none other and then they always come up in the list of the go-to anti-inflammatory spices. I like to high dose those, ate a lot of that. Everybody knows I went through my pineapple phase. Pineapple can be really anti-inflammatory because of the bromelain, which is a proteolytic enzyme that breaks down proteins, kind of like serrapeptase except serrapeptase, you're taking in a fasted state and pineapple is a food and can help with digesting your food. The main reason I want to get back to pineapple and the reason I haven't is for some reason intuitively, it just feels too sweet to me now, but when I was eating that the reductions in inflammations I just saw personally in myself were amazing. And then for the inflammatory side of things, trans fats, yes, they've been banned, but they are still there, seed oils, that's what I had written down for sure like Cynthia was saying I do think that is huge, especially the processed ones, the refined seed oils, and they're just rampant. I think Cate Shanahan, her book, The Fatburn Fix talks a lot about this, and there's like the three S's, canola, corn, cottonseed, safflower, soy, sesame?

Cynthia Thurlow: Sunflower.

Melanie Avalon: Sunflower. Yeah, so definitely looking for those. Gluten, I think can be very inflammatory for a lot of people. Those were the three main ones I wrote down and then just in general, I think the most inflammatory thing, well "processed foods," just processed foods, and then just eating too much like the energy toxicity of overindulging can have a very inflammatory effect compared to a calorie-restricted diet or fasting, which ultimately tends to create calorie restriction or allows for that fasting time can be anti-inflammatory. But the eating process is inflammatory just by its nature.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's all good.

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Shall we go on to Bruce's question?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes, this is the subject, "Thanks for all you do. I recently listened to all of the episodes on your podcast, and I would like to thank both of you for your dedicated work. I'm wondering if you've seen anything on sauna sessions and fasting. I have a sauna that I built a few years ago and use it four times a week. I have recently started using the red lights that are part of the lighting system that came with the heater control package because Melanie saying red lights were beneficial. Love Bruce." I cannot think of a more Melaniesque appropriate question."

Melanie Avalon: Bruce, thank you so much for your question. I do love the red lights, so I'm glad you're on that board as well as the sauna. I googled sauna and fasting and I didn't really find any studies per se. But I can speak to my personal experience and I found a very wonderful blog post written by Siim Land who I've had on my show twice.

Cynthia Thurlow: Me too, he's awesome.

Melanie Avalon: He's wonderful. Although I was thinking, I feel like he hasn't been posting. I feel like I haven't seen much from him recently.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, he's been quieter. I don't know, he might be writing a book. He's like a proliferative writer.

Melanie Avalon: He's just so smart.

Cynthia Thurlow: Mm-hmm and he doesn't have-- one of those things for me, I really am oftentimes fascinated/humbled when people that don't have traditional research or medical training are just able to grasp such complicated concepts, much like you Melanie, you can grasp such complicated subjects and really understand it at a level that even for myself, sometimes I'm like, "Wow, I had never thought about that." So, he's one of those young protegees of the science community.

Melanie Avalon: Well, first of all, thank you for saying that. And yeah, he's younger than me.

Cynthia Thurlow: I guess he's like, 25. [laughs] He's a young buck.

Melanie Avalon: I'm thinking maybe because he is so young maybe he had some life development career-wise.

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I think he's just smart and curious snd I think that has served him well.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I know he's amazing. I found a blog post by him called Why Combine Sauna and Fasting. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. But I will give you the takeaways from that blog post. This is all the work of Siim Land, not myself. But he makes the case that both sauna and fasting have a lot of similar benefits as far as anti-aging, longevity, and supporting the immune system. And sauna has some benefits that fasting does not automatically provide. For example, the cardiovascular workout equivalent of a sauna session, you're not going to get that from fasting. And then on the flipside, I guess you could say there are things that fasting would provide that sauna wouldn't necessarily. 

But he says that they work really well symbiotically for something that, I would have never come up with this and I don't think I would have ever come up with this. But he talks about the importance of autophagy in both fasting and sauna, so both sauna sessions and fasting instigate autophagy, which is basically a cellular cleanup process in the body. It's really linked to longevity, anti-aging, disease prevention, so many things. What's interesting is one of the main benefits of sauna comes from heat shock proteins that are activated when you do a sauna session. And there are some studies on heat shock proteins in rodents and they found that the autophagy process is actually required to experience the benefit from the heat shock proteins. And the autophagy in part possibly mitigates some of the actual stress or the detrimental effects of heat shock proteins. It's possible that by really ramping up your autophagy, which would happen with a fasted state that you will get more benefits from the sauna, and you'll get a more-- to use that word anti-inflammatory response, you're going to get the benefits either way, and it's not something to be worried about. But basically, the fasting during the sauna session, he said, it's basically like better quality control when your body is doing that cleanup process and inactivation with the heat shock proteins, keeping the healthy cells and getting rid of the negative cells.

And then something else, I actually did think about this, he mentioned this, but I think I would have thought about this too. He talks about how both fasting and sauna increase human growth hormone. And he thinks doing sauna while fasting can further increase that human growth hormone and mitigate any potential catabolic effects of fasting. The reason I think I would have thought about that was because I interviewed Wendy Myers recently, she pointed out something in her book that blew my mind. I read it. I don't know if I mentioned this on the show already. I read it, I was like, "Oh, that can't be." I was like because somebody would have told me that, I actually didn't believe it. And then I went to find a study and it's true. Did you know, in order to release human growth hormone from exercise, it's from the heat created from the exercise, like it requires heat.

Cynthia Thurlow: Interesting. I guess that's why it's important to sweat and raise that core temperature.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that blew my mind. I was like, "No, surely exercise releases human growth hormone by some other mechanism." But no, it actually requires heat, if you're like working out, and you never raise your core body temperature, you actually might not be getting some of the benefits.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's interesting because I do Pilates every week and this morning it was a different type format of Pilates, and it's not my favorite. And I was laughing with the instructor who I love. I just take her classes because she really challenges me. And I was laughing and saying, "Okay, it takes me about five minutes of doing Pilates, we're lifting or whatever I'm doing to warm up enough that I take off whatever shirt I have on." And I was saying to her what we were doing this morning was so much more intense that within like two minutes I was sweating. And so, I think it makes sense and you have to exert yourself hard enough because we're really looking for some degree of hormesis. We want a beneficial stressor to the body, so that would make sense although I don't think I've per se thought about it that way before.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it really blew my mind. But yeah, that word hormesis. I think basically the case that Siim Land makes with a sauna is that you will get a more beneficial hormetic response from sauna use if you're fasting during it. And then I just know for me personally that you could not pay me to go in a sauna with food in me, that experience feels very unpleasant. Because there's something about like the detox and the sweating and letting it all out like to be digesting food and to have all of that and yet at the same time would just feel like "Oof," it would feel " Oof." It'd just not feel good. I do have a sauna recommendation if people would like a recommendation. I personally use the Sunlighten Solo unit every single night of my life. I cannot even express my obsession with this creation. I would love to have a cabin unit which Sunlighten also makes cabin units. But I live in an apartment that's not going to happen and their solo unit is this really cool contraption that you actually lay down inside of. It's kind of like, I don't want to say a coffin, it's a dome.

Cynthia Thurlow: It does not look like a coffin. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: It does not, it looks like, I don't even know how to describe it. And it lights up, it has chromotherapy lights. And what's really wonderful about it, especially for me is your head is outside of it. I attach-- I've come up with this whole-- You can get one of those bendy arms that holds your phone and I attach that too because I put the solo unit on top of a twin frame, metal frame from Amazon that I got, so I can put a link to that in the show notes. I attach an arm and then it holds my phone over me so I can lay in there, my head is out of it, and I can read my books, and do my research, and do emails and it's just the most wonderful experience. They also have their products tested for EMF which is amazing. I recommend that solo unit. I also recommend obviously they're cabin units if you do have the space for that as well. If you tell them I sent you, they will give you a really good discount. That's at Sunlighten. But, Cynthia, do you have a sauna?

Cynthia Thurlow: We do not yet and that has something to do with the fact that we are putting a pool in next year and we're going to create an exterior structure. And I am envisioning that the exterior structure will have our infrared sauna in it, as opposed to it would have to reside in our garage. Even though the Sunlighten people have assured me it's completely fine. The area of the country I live in is very humid in the summer. And the thought of [laughs] being in a steaming garage with an infrared sauna is not really of interest to me. Right now, I have a sauna blanket. And yes, I'm working with the fact this is a temporary solution by HigherDOSE and so it's a sauna blanket that you get inside of and you sweat like crazy. And then I get on my PEMF mat, and I'm just so happy, I cannot tell you how much I enjoy the PEMF mat, I fall asleep on it, it's so relaxing, there are different settings, I have no affiliation with HigherDOSE, I just recommend that mat to everyone. But if you are space-constrained, Sunlighten makes apartment and small space-appropriate options as well as HigherDOSE, coming from a very large house that we had in Northern Virginia with a very large basement to a slightly smaller house with no basement has meant that we've had to get very creative. So, when that exterior structure is created, I'm excited because it's going to have like a little gym area inside that I can work out in.

Melanie Avalon: It's very exciting. Yeah, I can't wait for you to get the experience that you were sharing about just how good PEMF makes you feel. That's the way I feel after my sauna session each night.

Cynthia Thurlow: And I think it's important to find things that make you feel good. For me, I fell asleep on it every night this week, and I was like, Okay, "I cannot fall asleep on it because and I can't fall asleep in my normal time." So, now I have to do shorter episodes because you can change the settings and certain settings are impacting you more for relaxation and pre-sleep mode versus stimulating. And there's nothing better than lying on this warm mat. It's just glorious. Makes me feel so good.

Melanie Avalon: It's amazing. All right, shall we answer one more question?

Cynthia Thurlow: Sure.

Melanie Avalon: We have one last question; this is from Justine. And Justine says, "Hi guys, love the podcast, I've been listening at work, and I feel like I've learned a lot already. I'm relatively new to intermittent fasting, but I've had a good experience and results so far. You've talked previously about the science you feel when you are in ketosis, metallic taste in the mouth increased or different energy. Could you go over the signs to look for as a new intermittent faster, I am anxiously awaiting a sign that I am in ketosis but I'm not sure what to look for. Thanks, from Ottawa, Canada."

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, Justine, welcome to the intermittent fasting world. Typically, when patients or clients are asking these kinds of questions, we're really looking for signs of metabolic flexibility if we're able to effectively utilize stored fats or glucose or create ketones. And so, I think about being able to go longer in between meals. If you can go four to five hours in between meals and have good amounts of energy, you're not having energy slumps after eating, you are able to regulate your weight, part of metabolic flexibility is having the ability to lose weight more effectively. But I think about the brain cognition piece being a big one, if you're able to effectively create ketones and specific ones can diffuse across the blood-brain barrier. So, mental clarity, energy sustained from meal to meal, not getting hangry, effectively being able to lose weight. Those are probably the big ones that I think about what about you, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so those are really good for the signs, I guess the only thing I would add is as far as if you actually wanted to confirm or measure and we've talked about this at length multiple times on the show, but just to briefly go through it, you can measure ketones, there are caveats and nuances to all of it. If you're brand new to intermittent fasting, urine keto strips can be great because you will likely see that shift when you actually start generating ketones and a large portion of those ketones. Your body doesn't know how to use them in the beginning, so it like gets rid of a lot of them through your urine. The issue with urine sticks ongoing is that as your body becomes more used to using ketones, you don't excrete as many through the urine. It's not a really good long-term way to monitor ketosis or you can also monitor blood and breath. Monitoring your blood, there also can be a little bit of that effect where you might see more in the beginning and then as you become better at using it, you might see lower levels on your blood ketone meter. That said, you should always see them, you're not going to be in ketosis and not see ketones on your blood ketone meter. So, that can be a good thing to monitor. I really like Keto-Mojo's brand of their ketone meter. And then you can also measure the breath. So, the breath is also a byproduct of when we burn ketones. Interestingly, Dominic D'Agostino has talked about this, he's made the case that breath ketones are likely more a product of when you're actually burning fat compared to like dietary fat, which I thought was pretty cool just because of the whole metabolic process and what would create those breath ketones, so you can get a Biosense meter for that if you want to measure breath ketones, and I do have a code. You can actually join my Facebook group has a long name, Lumen, Biosense & CGMs: Carbs, Fat, Ketones & Blood Sugar and then (Melanie Avalon) basically if you type in Melanie Avalon Facebook Group, I have three groups and this one will come up. You can get $20 off of Biosense. If you go to melanieavalon.com/biosense and use the coupon AVALON20. What are your thoughts? Cynthia on measuring all of these different ketone options?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I think they're nice. Certainly, Dr. Anna Cabeca talks a lot about urine ketones and when you're new to being in ketosis that can be valuable. But those kinds of things add up. That's why, I typically start with-- these are signs and then you can get further validation. I do like Keto-Mojo, I really, really enjoy the owners. I think that they're delightful and they're really trying to help change the narrative especially about insulin resistance and diabetes, and just making people more aware of the net impact of food choices and lifestyle on our blood sugar. I think those are certainly really great options. I'm not as familiar with Biosense, but obviously I know that you've done your due diligence, but I think the devices to me are secondary to actually getting to a point where you start recognizing the signs that demonstrate that you're becoming more metabolically flexible. And just remember, it's a very small percentage of the population here in the United States, right now, it's about 7% to 8% are metabolically flexible. So, really important for everyone to lean into that.

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I agree, I think that's so important, it's a fine line. I just wish everybody could have the full knowledge of ketones before engaging with these devices so that they have the healthiest relationship with the device and what they're learning from it.

Cynthia Thurlow: I totally agree.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because you don't want it to be something that is a hurdle to something that you're doing that's good in your body because you feel like you're not creating enough ketones. I think it can just become an issue. I actually never measure my ketones ever. And we actually have a question that we didn't get to today, maybe we'll get to it next week, about our diets and if we're getting into ketosis or not, and I'll say this again when I answer that question, but I might not be, I don't know, I might not be getting into ketosis, you can burn fat without getting into ketosis. Surprise, well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, 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. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike although I have it on my to-do list, I really need to get that page updated. And you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast. I am @melanieavalon, Cynthia is @cynthia_thurlow_ and I think that is all the things. Anything from you before we go?

Cynthia Thurlow: No. I'm just looking forward to our next recording and I promise that our first question won't take quite so long.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, well, it was lots of questions.

Cynthia Thurlow: it was, very nuanced, but all good information that I think is applicable to most people that are listening.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. All right, well, this has been absolutely wonderful and I will talk to you next week.

Cynthia Thurlow: Sounds good.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

Thank you so much for listening to The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember, everything we discussed on this show does not constitute medical advice and no patient-doctor relationship is formed. 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, and original theme composed by Leland Cox and re-composed by Steve Saunders. See you next week.

[Transcript provided by SpeechDocs Podcast Transcription]

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Cynthia: cynthiathurlow.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Aug 21

Episode 279: Organic Wines, Blood Ketones, Urine pH, Fasting Insulin, Continuous Glucose Monitors, Appetite Hormones, Lean Protein, ADF, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 279 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 Cynthia Thurlow, author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging.

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

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

SHOW NOTES

Visit IFpodcast.com/episode279 For FULL Shownotes, And IFPodcast.com/StuffWeLike For All The Stuff We Like!

1:10 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A FREE Sample Pack With Any Purchase! Learn All About Electrolytes In Episode 237 - Our Interview With Robb Wolf!

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Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

DRY FARM WINES: Natural, Organic, Low Alcohol, Low Sugar Wines, Paleo And Keto Friendly! Go To dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast To Get A Bottle For A Penny!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #5 - Todd White

Episode 26: IF & Low Sugar/Alcohol/Toxin Wines For Health – Special Interview With Todd White Of Dry Farm Wines!

21:10 - Listener Q&A: Doreen - My first inquiry

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #70 - Kara Collier (Nutrisense)

Ep. 132 – Continuous Glucose Monitors: Why They’re Not Just for Diabetics Anymore with Kara Collier

NUTRISENSE: Get $30 Off A CGM At Nutrisense.Io/Ifpodcast With The Code IFPODCAST

18:10 - JOOVV: For A Limited Time Go To joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get Free BACON For LIFE Plus $100 Off Over 5 Boxes!

56:00 - AVALONX MAGNESIUM 8Get On The Email List To Stay Up To Date With All The Special Offers And News About Melanie's New Supplements At avalonx.us/emaillist, And Use The Code Melanieavalon For 10% On Any Order At Avalonx.Us And MDlogichealth.Com!

Our content does not constitute an attempt to practice medicine, and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please consult a qualified health care provider for medical advice and answers to personal health questions.

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 279 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, biohacker and 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, Cynthia Thurlow, Nurse Practitioner and author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and cynthiathurlow.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this show do not constitute medical advice or treatment and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. So, pour yourself a mug of black coffee, a cup of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. 

Hi, friends, I'm about to tell you how you can get my favorite electrolytes for free. Yes, completely free. And the feedback we have received about LMNT electrolytes from our audience is overwhelming. You guys love LMNT and I'm so excited because our new offer allows new and returning customers to get free LMNT. And on top of that their super popular Grapefruit flavor is back. If you've been having issues with intermittent fasting, electrolytes may just be the thing that you need and/or have you heard of something called the keto flu? Here's the thing. The keto flu is not actually a condition. Keto flu just refers to a bundle of symptoms, headaches, fatigue, muscle cramps, and insomnia that people experience in the early stages of keto dieting. Here's what's going on. When you eat a low-carb diet, your insulin levels drop. Low insulin in turn lowers the production of the hormone aldosterone. Now, aldosterone is made in the kidneys and it helps you retain sodium. So, low aldosterone on a keto diet makes you lose sodium at a rapid rate and even if you are consciously consuming electrolytes, you might not be getting enough. In particular, you need electrolytes, especially sodium and potassium in order for nerve impulses to properly fire. Electrolytes can easily be depleted while intermittent fasting.

Robb Wolf, who as you guys know is my hero in the holistic health world worked with the guys at Keto Gains to get the exact formulation for electrolyte supplements to formulate LMNT Recharge, so you can maintain ketosis and feel your best. LMNT Recharge has no sugar, no coloring, no artificial ingredients, no junk. They're used by three Navy SEALs teams, they are the official hydration partner to Team USA weightlifting, they're used by multiple NFL teams, and so much more. We have an incredible offer just for our listeners. You can get a free LMNT sample pack that includes all eight flavors. Citrus, Watermelon, Orange, Raspberry, Mango Chili, Lemon Habanero, Chocolate, and Raw Unflavored. And the Raw Unflavored, by the way is clean fast friendly. You can try them all completely free when you make a purchase at our link, drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. You can get this offer as a first time and as a returning LMNT customer. I know there are a lot of returning LMNT customers. The feedback I hear from you guys, "loving LMNT" is amazing. LMNT offers no questions asked about refunds on all orders. You won't even have to send it back. And this offer is exclusively available only through VIP LMNT partners. You won't find this offer publicly anywhere else. So, again, the link is drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. And we'll put all this information in the show notes.

And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? When it comes to weight loss, we focus a lot on what and when we eat. It makes sense because these foods affect our hormones and how our bodies store and burn fat. But do you know what is possibly one of the most influential factors in weight gain? It's not your food and it's not fasting. It's actually our skincare and makeup. As it turns out, Europe has banned over a thousand compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup in the US due to their toxicity. These include endocrine disrupters, which mess with your hormones, carcinogens linked to cancer, and obesogens which literally can cause your body to store and gain weight. Basically, when we're using conventional skincare and makeup, we are giving these obesogenic compounds direct access to our bloodstream. And then in our bodies, studies have shown they do things like reduce our satiety hormones, increase our hunger hormones, make fat cells more likely to store fat, and more resistant to burning fat, and so much more. If you have stubborn fat, friends, your skincare and makeup maybe playing a role in that. Beyond weight gain and weight loss, these compounds have very detrimental effects on our health and they affect the health of our future generations. That's because ladies, when we have babies, a huge percent of those toxic compounds go through the placenta into the newborn. It is so, so shocking and the effects last for years. 

Conventional lipstick, for example, often tests high in lead and the half-life of lead is up to 30 years. That means when you put on some conventional lipstick, 30 years later, maybe half of that lead has left your bones. On top of that there is essentially no regulation of these products on the shelves. That's why it's up to us to choose brands that are changing this. The brand that is working the hardest to do this is Beautycounter. They were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, so you can truly feel good about what you put on. And friends, these products really, really work. They are incredible. They are counter time for antiaging, counter match for normal skin, counter control for acne and oily prone, and counter start for sensitive. I use their Overnight Resurfacing Peel and vitamin C serum every single night of my life. And their makeup is amazing. Check on my Instagram to see what it looks like. Tina Fey, even wore all Beautycounter makeup when she hosted The Golden Globes. So, yes, it is high-definition camera ready. They have so many other products, deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, products for babies, and so much more. You can shop with us at beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. Also, make sure to get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. I give away a lot of free things on that list. So, definitely check it out. And you can join me in my Facebook group, Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare with Melanie Avalon. People share their experiences, ask questions, give product reviews, and I do a giveaway every single week in that group as well.

And lastly, if you're thinking of making Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare, a part of your future like we have, we definitely recommend becoming a Band of Beauty member. It's sort of 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. It is totally completely worth it. So, again, to shop with us, go to beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 279 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Cynthia Thurlow.

Cynthia Thurlow: Hey, there. 

Melanie Avalon: And Cynthia, I have a fun topic that we can talk about briefly if you would like. You already know this, because I asked your advice about it yesterday. For listeners, yesterday, I went to a gender reveal party for one of my friends and it was an evening event. And I knew there was drinks and wine. I actually asked her ahead of time. I was asking Cynthia, I was like, “Is it okay, if I bring my own organic wine to this pregnancy related event, if there's already drinks?” You said that you thought that would be appropriate. So, I did. But I did not bring Dry Farm Wines and I regret that decision. My [laughs] Oura Ring this morning, it's crazy how much it knows when you're drinking wine you shouldn't be drinking and maybe too much of it and not sleeping well. But what's really interesting is, my sleep was great, just my readiness score is awful. I bring it up because I think I need these moments to remember why I only drink Dry Farm Wines and you recently interviewed Todd White.

Cynthia Thurlow: I did. First of all, it was really interesting to prep for that discussion. And then when I got off the phone, I'm sorry, I got off the recording, I was saying to my husband it has been very common for me over the last several years to just send team members, family members subscriptions to Dry Farm Wines and how easy that has been. And I said, “I didn't fully appreciate and realize the differences between conventional winemaking here in the United States versus natural practices.” Certainly, from this point going forward, I really understand and appreciate the chemical and exposure load that you get from conventional wine, which I was really-- 

Let me be very clear. I think I'm a pretty well-educated person about processed food industry and nutrient dense Whole Foods, but I hadn't really considered the net impact of conventional winemaking here in the United States. And so, that was a really enlightening podcast. I can imagine how you felt differently. I think, if I recall from our conversations last few days, you were planning on bringing an organic option or organic options with you. So, even with the organic wines, you still felt poorly. I wonder if it was the alcohol content.

Melanie Avalon: I was telling you this already. But basically, at home, I only drink Dry Farm Wines. And for listeners that are not familiar, they're not a wine producer. They're like an investigator and a distributor. They go all throughout Europe, only Europe, because Todd says that, “None of the US wines meet their standard.” And I think that's in part, because of just how saturated the US environment is in pesticides, even organic like plots of land. The wineries from there, they did a test. I don't know. Did he bring up the test that they did a while ago and they tested all these different wines in California, including organic ones and every single one tested for pesticides, which is just crazy. They find the wines that are low in sugar, so less than I think one gram, and then low alcohol, so 12.5% or less, and then they test them for heavy metals, pesticides, mold. I noticed such a difference drinking them. 

But what I did for this party was, I do have a collection of wines that are not Dry Farm Wines that are organic that I just have from over the years that I'm not going to drink by myself at my apartment, because I really just drink the Dry Farm Wines. So, I bring them to events like this. But now in retrospect, I'm like, “I should have just brought Dry Farm Wines.” Then again, I did have a lot.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, maybe it was dose dependent. Meaning, perhaps, if you had had one glass of the organic wine, maybe you were fine. Maybe it was two glasses might have been just enough to disrupt your sleep quality.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, probably.

Cynthia Thurlow: That's my guess. I always say, “Maybe it's dosage dependent.” I say that to patients like, “Maybe it's the quantity and not so much per se that it was not Dry Farm Wines.” But the one thing that I think I was really surprised by when I spoke with Todd was the differences in alcohol content. Conventional wines can be greater than 15% alcohol versus six to 12.5 is-- Most of the Dry Farm Wines really run and they are, as you mentioned, lower sugar. And so, we know that that impacts us on pretty significant profound ways. So, but did you have fun? 

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I had so much fun. It was fabulous. And even that said, I'm still good. This is not my college days or anything. No, I did. I have not been to a gender reveal party before. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Neither have I. But that also says generationally where I am. My oldest will be 17 next week. And so, I'm just at a different-- When I was pregnant, people chose to either find out at 20 weeks what gender child they were having or not. And so, now, people can find out a whole lot earlier and it seems to be something that's very trendy and fun. And I think there's always opportunities to celebrate babies. It's such a fun exciting time.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I agree. It's funny. They wanted you to wear blue or pink based on what you thought it would be. I only wear black dresses. I wear a black dress, but then I wore sparkly shoes that were blue and pink.

Cynthia Thurlow: I like that. You're in a neutral zone. 

Melanie Avalon: Yep. [chuckles] So, yeah. But for listeners, to learn more about Dry Farm Wines, which I'm just so obsessed with, our link will get you a bottle for a penny. So, go to dryfarmwines/ifpodcast and that's where you can get that offer. And then, Cynthia when do you air that episode with Todd?

Cynthia Thurlow: Actually, next Saturday. So, it will be August 13th that episode will air.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Awesome. So, that'll actually be aired by the time this comes out. We'll put a link to that episode. We'll also put a link to the episode that I did with Todd way back in the day. He was one of my first episodes on The Biohacking Podcast. Well, I'll also put an episode we've had him on the show. So, I'll put a link to that as well.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, he's a great guy. It's interesting, because I'm married to a Todd. And my Todd really likes the red selections from Dry Farm Wines. And it's interesting. We recently placed an order and he always feels there's too much white wine in our house. I think because maybe our guests drink the red wine. This last order that we've received, he has been very happy with.

Melanie Avalon: Well, so, that's something because I know that you personally you don't drink at all, right?

Cynthia Thurlow: I don't. It's the only thing that really erodes my sleep. By this, for everyone who's listening, if you're not yet in the perimenopause range, it is the only thing that gives me hot flashes. So, I just don't drink for that reason because hot flashes, especially when you're trying to fall asleep are not fun. But yeah, that was a large decision why I stopped drinking much of anything. I didn't drink much to begin with. I've always been more of a very, very light drinker.

Melanie Avalon: With me having drank the Dry Farm Wines over the trajectory of there, because I probably started, I don't know, when they were founded.

Cynthia Thurlow: Seven years ago, I think, Todd was saying.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I started drinking them in probably 2014 or 2015. I probably started drinking them right at the beginning, like 2015. They have not improved, but they have improved. You were talking about the red wine. In the beginning, most of the reds all were very, very light. They didn't have many more robust reds, because I think it's harder for them to find those that fit all their criteria. But they have evolved. That's a good word. They've evolved so much in the red wines that they source and some of their wines are just delicious.

Cynthia Thurlow: Awesome. You can drink them with a good conscience.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yes. And now, I think I need these nights every now and then, like, last night to further appreciate why I only drink Dry Farm Wines normally. So, before we jump into questions, Cynthia, would you like to tell listeners one more time about the giveaway that you are doing?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. So, this is the last week of the giveaway. And all we're asking you to do is, if you've purchased my book, Intermittent Fasting Transformation, please leave a review, screenshot the review, send it to questions@ifpodcast.com, and you will be eligible for an entry. You have to live in the continental United States and it's a grouping of some of my favorite products and designs for health, and a few other wonderful retailers that I work very closely with as a thank you. We'll pick one winner. This is the last week of the giveaway. So, please make sure you get your entries in and we will look forward to randomly selecting a winner.

Melanie Avalon: And I will just say, so, I know a lot of you guys have Cynthia's book, because we get feedback. I see it in the groups. But we haven't had that many entries and I'm just saying that to say you have a good chance of winning. So, if you have the book-- [crosstalk]

Cynthia Thurlow: The odds are in your favor. [laughs] 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I always like to emphasize this because I think giveaways where people think, “Oh, there's so many people entering. I have no chance of winning.” But a lot of people will think that and [laughs] you do have a good chance of winning. And it also just really helps support Cynthia's wonderful book and we'd be so appreciative. So, definitely, definitely do that.

Cynthia Thurlow: And I don't think until I wrote a book that I realized how important those reviews are. So, please know that each and every review, I appreciate on a level beyond I can properly articulate. There are so many people that have really benefited from the book. I'm speaking from a place of gratitude and I would love to be able to send these goodies to one select individual. So, definitely get those entries into us.

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Melanie Avalon: Shall we jump into some questions for today? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. 

Melanie Avalon: Okay. To start things off, this is a long question, but she has a fun story and then she has a lot of questions that we could just do rapid fire. This comes from Doreen and she wrote this to us back when Gin was on the show. So, she says, “Hi, Melanie, hi, Gin. Let me start off by saying, I absolutely love the podcast. I feel like you ladies have become my friends. You make me smile and laugh. You're smart. You're funny. Initially, I was listening in no specific order, but then I decided to listen every Monday to the new episodes and backtrack when I'm walking. Like many of your listeners, I have many questions that sometimes get answered before I need to submit them. I have several drafts with questions, but I can't prioritize which questions are the most important. Finally, after listening to Episode 159 with Dr. Anna Cabeca, I've been motivated to get some questions answered.” Really quick question for you, Cynthia. You are personal friends with Anna Cabeca, right?

Cynthia Thurlow: I am. She's wonderful.

Melanie Avalon: I think she's actually been on this show twice and on my Biohacking Podcast, maybe twice. Done a lot of interviews with her. I really like her work. Doreen says, “I am 54 years old, a certified personal trainer and yoga certified. I teach mainly hot yoga. It's very tough with a mask. I was heavy as a teenager at 5’2”, 184 pounds. My family celebrates everything with food. I'm Italian. At 16 with mom's help, I joined Weight Watchers and reached my goal in 1981. I'm still an active lifetime member and still track and weigh every few months. Diet and exercise and healthy eating, I've managed to stay within a six-to-eight-pound window with the exception of having my two children and some health issues. 

In 2015, I was diagnosed with cancer. I caught it early Stage 1. I did have some weight gain that crept up and I don't weigh myself now because of the way my clothing had stopped fitting. My first thought during the pandemic was panic. I'm going to gain weight without hot yoga. So, I took to the pavement, I started walking. During walks when my friends got back to work, I would binge listen to podcasts and I didn't gain the weight. Based on listening alone, I began adding IF into my routine and I feel fantastic. It's also helped with health issues, IBS, and GERD, et cetera. Melanie, I tried to get your book and Barnes & Noble had no copies. I was very excited to crack the book on our road trip from Long Island to Vermont. One of our favorite stops is for a place called the Creamery, which is a cute little country store. It's a constant on our trips to Vermont. I promise there's a reason for this story. 

I'm a shopaholic. So, while my husband and friends were getting the ice cream, I was power shopping around the store. I looked up and could not believe my eyes to my surprise staring me in the face was a copy of What When Wine with Melanie's beautiful face on the cover. I screamed. I was so excited. And of course, I bought it. It was divine intervention and favor. In Ludlow Vermont, they're carrying Melanie's books.” Okay, I just have to stop. This blows my mind. [laughs] I can't believe my book was in this random country store in Vermont. That is so random to me. Do you think these stores just order books and resell them, I guess?

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, I suspect maybe the owner or someone who's connected with the owner probably is a fan. 

Melanie Avalon: Wow. That would be so exciting to me, if I was in some random little country store and saw my book. I would not know what to do.

Cynthia Thurlow: You've made it, you know? You've saturated the rural country market.

Melanie Avalon: I know, I know. So, Doreen, thank you for sharing that story. That really made my day. Okay, so, now, she has rapid fire a lot of questions. Here we go. Number one, “With regard to ketones, pH levels in urine and all measures to determine clean fasting and eating. During the podcast with Dr. Cabeca, she discussed how important it is to test your urine for pH levels regarding ketones. I believed you said one could be burning ketones, even though you don't turn the strip's purple. There's also a question about blood sugar. I remember a discussion of different types of testing for blood sugar and blood fasting sugar. What's the difference? It would be very helpful, if you can clarify the importance of measuring pH levels in urine, ketone burning, and blood sugar, and which tests for IF purposes would be best, and where to get these kits and tests, and will they cost a fortune?” Okay, so, ketones, pH testing, blood sugar testing, would you like to talk a little bit about this, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: if you've been fasting and you're not new to fasting, then I would not anticipate that you would have urinary ketones present. It's much more accurate to actually test blood. But for the purposes of your constellation of questions, I would say that as a woman that it sounds you're in perimenopause/menopause that it'd be most valuable for you to know a fasting insulin and a fasting blood sugar. And a fasting insulin, you can get drawn with regular lab work. A Keto-Mojo is a good meter to use if you want to track your blood ketones. 

And then lastly, a fasting blood sugar with a glucometer or if you want to have a continuous glucose monitor, typically where I stay, I think it's important to know what your blood sugar is when you are in an unfed state. I think it's equally important to know what your blood sugar is in response to stress, nutrition, meals, exercise, etc. There's a lot of different variables to look at. I did a really great podcast. I know that Kara Collier has been on my podcast and also, Melanie's Biohacking Podcast at least once or twice. And that's a really fantastic resource and we will link that in the show notes.

Melanie Avalon: Do you put much weight into measuring the pH levels?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I don't. I really don't. I think that there are a lot of metrics that we can measure. It doesn't necessarily mean that the information is all that valuable. Because if you're eating a nutrient dense Whole Foods diet, and you're not drinking excessively, and you're not eating a lot of processed carbohydrates, then ideally, and I have encountered a few functional medicine practices that will have their patients do urinary pH strips, but I think it gets expensive. And I've come to find that most of us like you and I, if you were to measure our urinary pH, it's probably more alkaline based on the types of foods that we eat. 

With that being said, when people are trying to budget for different types of home testing or monitoring, I think the most valuable one of all is really looking at fasting blood sugar or looking at a continuous glucose monitor. If someone is new to a lower carb ketogenic lifestyle, and they have not been in ketosis, and they're obese and overweight, then testing at least initially with urinary strips for ketones can be valuable. But if you have been in ketosis and you've been fasting for a long period of time, they're not going to show up in your urine. They are going to show up in your blood. I don't know if you have anything that you'd like to add to that. 

I think the big thing for me as a clinician is, there're a lot of metrics that we can measure. It doesn't mean we should measure everyone. We should decide based on our budget and our interests what is the greatest priority? I'm getting ready to bring the Keto-Mojo individuals on the podcast to talk more about testing ketones, because I get a lot of questions about it. But it really needs to be taken in the context of what are your risk factors, are you insulin sensitive, what are you trying to measure, what are the metrics you really want to look at and going from there?

Melanie Avalon: Are you interviewing Dorian? 

Cynthia Thurlow: I am, but not until February. Because right now, I'm booking into March. Yeah, which is I took time off around the book launch and now, we're back into eager beaver stage where we're booked out like six months.

Melanie Avalon: I was having flashbacks, because I connected with him right when they launched, I think as well and had him on this show. I think we had him on the show. He's British, right? Flashback to his-- He has the best accent. 

Cynthia Thurlow: And then his wife, I guess, is Emma?

Melanie Avalon: Is she British, as well?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, she's American, but they're really cute. They're cute little couple.

Melanie Avalon: Aww. Yeah, I'll just echo everything that you said just to really bring it into people's heads. With the ketone urine strips like Cynthia said, if you've been fasting for a while, if you've been even ketogenic for a while, you might not see that on your urine. I think they're most useful for somebody going from a standard American diet, not fasting to either ketogenic diet or fasting, because it shows when you start, just in general creating those ketones and the excess are spilling into the urine. But then the body becomes more efficient and you don't see that as much necessarily. So, there's real a time window when I would use those. 

And then for the blood sugar testing, yes, we are major, major fans of continuous glucose monitors. Those will really give you, because you'd asked me about the difference between the fasted blood sugar and then just the blood sugar. It's always blood sugar, but it's either fasted or postprandial, which means after a meal. And the only difference is just based on if you ate or not. And so, the levels might be different based on that. And so, continuous glucose monitor is so helpful or can be, because it shows you constantly how your blood sugar is reacting to fasting or eating short of that with just like a finger prick type situation. And this is what Cynthia said, as well. So, I think we're very aligned, 

I think if you had to choose-- once you try a continuous glucose monitor, you will realize just how much potentially your blood sugar can change even minute to minute. And I say that because you might do a finger prick and get a number that if you had tested 15 minutes earlier would be pretty different. It's much more clear picture with a continuous glucose monitor. If you don't like pricking yourself or you don't want to be pricking yourself all the time and you had to pick one time to prick yourself, I would probably go the Marty Kendall route, which is right before eating to see if you actually are in a lower blood sugar state ready for that meal. Because his data driven fasting is all about how people will open their eating window when they actually have high blood sugar. They think they need fuel, but they actually don't. It's very interesting. The link for that is nutrisense.io/ifpodcast and the coupon code, IFPODCAST will actually get you $30 off any subscription to a CGM program. So, definitely check that out. That can be a really helpful resource. 

Her next question, she says, “I'm in between ADF and one meal a day depending on what's happening in my life. Sometimes, I will do four straight days of 18:6, but then eat regularly on the weekend. I thought this protocol was good. Is it there a gray area and discussion about this topic? Do you agree that every day shouldn’t be a short eating window? Please clarify. I find myself contradicting my thoughts and I feel worried about opening my window too early.” I'm actually very curious your thoughts on this, Cynthia, because Gin would talk about this a lot, which was, in particular in regards to ADF, which is something that I personally have never done ADF. But she would often talk about the importance of if you're doing ADF not having a shorter eating window and not under eating on your fasting day. So, I'm really curious your thoughts on that and also on just if somebody was doing one meal a day, every day type situation?

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, I think listeners are probably not surprised to hear that I don't like ADF or OMAD as a sustained strategy for women or men for that matter, because there's just no way you're going to be able to get enough protein in one meal or this alternate day fasting. And there's a lot of what I believe to be emerging, both anecdotal and also research to suggest, unless someone's really stubbornly obese and is really trying to break through plateaus, most of us that are close to our ideal body weight, you start looking at the law of diminishing returns. And so, you just can't build enough muscle protein synthesis. I've spoken to Gabrielle Lyon about this extensively. I've spoken to Ted Naiman. And for listeners, those are both physicians in that space about how to stoke appropriate muscle-protein synthesis. 

I do like people varying their fasting and feeding windows. I think variety is very important, not just in our fasting windows, but also in the foods we choose to eat. I like a lot of variety. Same thing with exercise. However, especially when someone is trying to figure out what works best for them, it requires a degree of experimentation. What gives you plenty of energy, what supports sleep habits, what is allowing you to break through a plateau, do you need to be honest with yourself about the fact that you're not eating a particularly nutrient dense diet, and then you're attempting to do these prolonged fast to work through challenges that you're experiencing? And I'm starting to believe and starting to speak about this more that I am starting to see many women in particular that are doing this over-fasting, overtraining, over-restriction in an effort to lose weight. And we will obviously unpack more of this as the podcast goes on and I'll certainly be talking about it on my own podcast.

But in the context of this question, I don't like ADF and OMAD for a sustained strategy for women. It’s just impossible to get your protein in. And I'm very protein centric and I admit that. But when I look at the research and when I-- I'm a 51 year old woman. I just realized that I had a birthday last week. I have to remind myself, I mean, you're older. It requires a bit of effort to get sufficient amounts of protein into my diet. It is work that I'm happy to do. But I think in the context of answering this question that that's my prevailing thought process. How about you Melanie? 

Melanie Avalon:I keep rereading her question because I'm actually a little bit unclear now what she's actually doing. Because she says, she's in between ADF and one meal a day, but then she says, sometimes, she does four straight days of 18:6.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think she's doing a lot of variety. 

Melanie Avalon: 18:6, for example, would you consider that like a one meal a day, a six-hour eating window? I guess, it depends what they're actually eating during it. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Correct. I think a lot of people are just eating one big meal and maybe they're not hungry at the end of their six-hour feeding window. And that's the concern that I have. The more I talk to other metabolic health experts, the more I start thinking that we have to be less rigid and we need to really lean in like-- I've been experimenting this whole summer with having a wider feeding window. And, especially, because I've been lifting more, I've been more hungry, I've been breaking my fast earlier, I'm finding that I'm getting better results. And each one of us has different goals and different aspirations. But I think a certain degree of experimentation is important to not be so rigid with-- If something has been working, try something and try something new. We have a wider feeding window. And by wider, it's not my feeding window was 12 hours. It might be an eight-hour, a nine-hour or a 10-hour, so that I can have more meals with my family.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, yeah, I love that. I feel we always say that it's individual and you have to find what works for you, which feels like a cop out answer. But it's so, so true, because people are just so different. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Bio individuality rules. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Because me, for example, I do a shorter eating window. Yeah, I was thinking about this with you're talking about how you're struggling to get in enough protein and so many people say that to us. We get so many questions about that. And it's just interesting to me, because it's so easy for me. [laughs] I just eat so much protein.

Cynthia Thurlow: But I think my appetite was different at 30 than it is at 51, because I've tried to reflect on that like, “How much more food did I eat when I was younger?” There was definitely a point in my early 40s that I felt my appetite change significantly. A lot of my patients, and clients, and friends, we'll talk about this openly. We're like, “Oh, yeah, we don't eat nearly as much food.” I think that is a biologic drive. If you talk to someone who's 70, they don't have the appetite they had at 20. It's because ideally, we should not be in an anabolic growth phase at that stage of our lives. Whereas, I have teenage boys and they're very much in this anabolic building stage and they're healthy, they're lean, they're muscular. It's a very different phase of life. And so, I think so much of it's dependent on where we are in time and space. It is a concerted effort. 

For me, to hit my protein macros every day and it's not that I don't like to eat. Protein will fill me up and then I'm full and I'm like, “Okay, now, four or five hours later, I ate another protein bolus.” And that's how I navigate. I eat a lot of eggs. Someone asked me the other day, “How do you get that much protein?” I was like, “I eat a lot of eggs.” Because I can eat a good amount of eggs and I don't feel nearly as full as I would if I ate a piece of steak. But I always like to shake things up.

Melanie Avalon: I'm super curious. When you did have a higher appetite, when you were in your 20s and 30s, did you ever do an approach like me where-- Literally, the foundation of my meals is lean protein., I don't really add-- It's hard to describe, but I basically just eat tons and tons of chicken, fish, scallops. That's the volume of my meat. That's the base of it. Did you ever do that approach or was it always in the context of adding some fats, some oils? I'm just wondering how much that affects how much you actually eat.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, you have to remember that when I was 30, I was in a hospital working all day long. And I became a parent when I was 34, a second child at 36. And so, I would never have been able to manage the kind of eating schedule that I have now around those responsibilities, because you're lucky if you can eat at all [laughs] when you're working in a hospital and you're rounding on patients. I think that definitely would play a role in it. Personally, I don't do well with fatty meats. I never have. I don't like duck. I tend to lean into lean cuts of meat. I've always been that way. I have a child that's the same way. I think it's just some genetic-- It's this desire, like, we acknowledge. It's not that my body has trouble breaking down fats, because I eat healthy fats, but I don't eat a lot of healthy fats. I can definitely mitigate a carbohydrate load, if I'm exercising. Today, I lifted. And so, I'll probably have some fruit this afternoon after my dinner. 

But with that being said, I would not have been able to eat the way I do now, if I was still working in a hospital and had little kids. I acknowledge that my N of 1, what works for me now is largely because I'm an entrepreneur and I can break my fast whenever I want to. Generally speaking, I don't have to worry that little people are going to stick their fingers in a light socket when I'm trying to eat. Whereas now they largely-- I always say, they're free roaming mini adults right now. They're very self-sufficient for the most part. So, it's hard for me to answer that question because I just don't know. Even when I was in the beginning stages of perimenopause and I noticed that I had that drop off in my appetite, I really think and I haven't been able to get 100% good answer on this, because I've asked a lot of people. I think it's a combination of the muscle changes that impact insulin sensitivity in late 30s, early 40s. That [unintelligible [00:41:28] even though I was always lifting and eating properly, etc. 

And then I do think that there's some loss of estradiol signaling in the gut that may also impact that as well. Again, I haven't gotten great research to be able to back that up. But in talking to other researchers and clinicians, that's been the working hypothesis of why that starts to happen. But we also know that physiologically, we don't need as much food as we get older, whether some people that bothers them or not. I think Mark Sisson, who I know you just interviewed on the podcast as well, he kept saying, “Heck, I don't eat nearly as much food as I used to and I do just fine with--" As a guy, he's like, “I do just fine having one really big meal a day.” He's like, “I'm happy.” So, so many factors.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it’s so interesting. It's interesting that you and I are both really similar with that lean meat thing. I still do, basically, lean meats most nights, but probably once a week, I just crave salmon and I'll just do a bolus of really fatty salmon. And I've found that that works for me right now. It's really interesting just how the body changes over time and how your cravings change. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. One thing I've noticed and this applies to our audience and listeners, too, is that I can tell where my estrogen levels are by how much cravings I have. I generally don't crave. I crave healthy food, but I don't have cravings that wake me up at night or I don't think about chocolate constantly or something sweet. But estrogen is this cravings modifier, if there's any way to explain it that when our estrogen levels are optimized, it helps with insulin sensitivity, it helps with those cravings, it helps buffer. 

And so, a colleague of mine and I were talking about how we can tell when women are in this perimenopause/menopause state. And a lot of people, they're never full. They might have just eat a meal, but they still don't feel full. And a lot of that can be this diminishing levels of estrogen. And so, really being proactive about getting your levels tested, knowing where they are, and if appropriate, getting some support and that could come in the form of supplements, that could come in the form of hormonal replacement therapy depending on the individual.

Melanie Avalon: Gotcha. So helpful. I so love having you on this show and having your knowledge about all of this. It makes me so excited. I'm like, “Oh, so much good information for people.” Okay, her next question. She says, “I've been doing well with IF. I learned midway through that Splenda and my black coffee and apple cider vinegar with seltzer was a no-no or so called “dirty fast.” I still found success before I learned this, but now, I have saved those things for when I open my window. The days when I did this and I don't open my window for 18 to 20 hours, can this dirty fast still be beneficial? What I mean is, I'll wake up, I'll open my window with coffee and half in half, I'll get sidetracked. I'm a touch ADD. And then several hours later, I've done 18:6, not on purpose. So, do you think my body does not repair like it would without the cream?” This is a good question.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think it's important to keep in the context of dairy as insulinemic. And if you are at your goal weight or whatever metrics you're tracking, you're happy with where your progress has been made, I wouldn't stress and worry if one day out of the week you have a little bit of half and half or cream in your coffee. However, and I'm laughing because I was just at an event this past weekend with Vinnie Tortorich and some other metabolic health people and getting clarification, because some half and half in your coffee for one person might be a teaspoon and for another person, it might be half coffee, half, half and half and that was the joke that Vinnie was telling at this event was that get clarification.

If you're having a teaspoon or a tablespoon, that's probably not going to derail your overall fasting regimen. But if you're derailing your weight loss efforts, because you're consuming a lot of fat, like, what Melanie and I were just talking about, fatty meats. Just fat in general. Fat is calorically very dense. It's great, but too much of any one thing is not beneficial. I think it really depends on what your goals are, but I don't want anyone that's listening to stress that if one day of the week, they decide to have a teaspoon of cream in their coffee that somehow that makes them a bad faster or a dirty faster. It's always in the context of what are your goals, what are you shooting for? If you're weight loss resistant, that's probably not the best choice I would rather that you just use-- 

You can change the flavor profile of black coffee with things like cinnamon, which can boost insulin sensitivity. You can use high-quality salt like Redmond's. And we'll include a link to Redmond’s. I love Redmond’s. They are such great salt. But it can really change the flavor profile, if you're struggling with how bitter coffee can be. But also remember, bitter means that there's a high polyphenol content in the tea or the coffee that you're drinking and you don't want to diminish the net impact of the benefits of those bitter compounds.

Melanie Avalon: That makes me want to go on a really quick tangent. Actually, two thoughts. One about the cinnamon. I'm interviewing on Monday, Ari Whitten. You said you are interviewing him, right? 

Cynthia Thurlow: I think in February. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I haven't read his first book about red light therapy. But his new book is called Eat for Energy and he just goes into all the topics about diet and sleep and it's very supplement focused. So, what type of compounds and supplements can benefit that? It was interesting. His chapter on blood sugar, he goes really hard pushing the cinnamon. I didn’t really considered cinnamon that-- I knew it had those effects on blood sugar, but he really makes the case for having it with every meal, which was pretty interesting. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Like how much in terms of quantity?

Melanie Avalon: He recommends a teaspoon added to meals.

Cynthia Thurlow: Okay, so, it's not a lot. Obviously, when I was doing research for the book, it was something that really stood out as something that could be certainly efficacious. And so, I've recommended people sprinkle some in their coffee, but a teaspoon is a good amount.

Melanie Avalon: And it was interesting, because I do remember you talking about it in the book. And then I was just very, I guess, surprised about the link to which he talked about it. He talked about it and vinegar, which she talks about taking. Oh, since you said it, people are going to really be wondering. [laughs] You don't think or do you think how does cinnamon affect the fast in coffee?

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, it changes the flavor profile, but it's supposed to help improve insulin sensitivity. I don't recall from the research that I looked at so long ago now. It seems it was million years ago. What was the therapeutic amount? I would have to go back and do some digging. But it's certainly not something that is going to break a clean fast. I think that's the distinction our listeners are probably focused on. But it's oftentimes the hook that I get people interested in using black coffee is use Redmond salt or try cinnamon, and almost everyone is able to ease that transition. It just helps curb that bitterness of the plain coffee.

Melanie Avalon: I keep mentioning Mark Schatzker’s book, The End of Craving and I finally just finished both. I was so proud of myself, I read both his other two books in three days. Steak and The Dorito Effect. His books are just amazing. And now, I really want to re interview a carnivore figure like Paul Saladino, or Shawn Baker, or something. Because he doesn't talk about in the context of the carnivore movement or anything. But he makes a really good case for-- Because you're talking about polyphenols and the bitterness and how that might relate. He talks about how basically kids don't often like these bitter vegetables and stuff. And the carnivore movement, people will use that as an example of why we shouldn't be eating plants because they're saying like, “Intuitively, our bodies know not to eat it.” And then we conditioned ourselves to eat it.

When he makes the argument that the body is learning to eat it. It wasn't so much intuition that we shouldn't have eaten it. It was that our body had to learn and adapt in order to get the health benefits from it. I just thought that was a really nicely reframed on that concept with plant toxins.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, and I think the one thing that I fervently believe having gone through a healthcare hiccup is that there was a time posthospitalization that the only thing my body tolerated was meat. But then I got to a point where I started to crave vegetables. I think as your gut heals, you become more tolerant to those plant-based compounds. I truly, truly believe that the average person should be able to eat a variety of macronutrients and not just protein. That's my feeling. I went through nine months of just eating meat. Anytime I tried to reintroduce a vegetable, it was a disaster. No exaggeration. But I think as my gut has healed. And it ebbs and flows. I don't think it's ever going to be perfect. I find myself craving certain things. It'd be interesting to see. I know that Paul is perhaps a bit more outspoken than Shawn. And I've met Shawn in person now. So, I feel I can comfortably say that. But it would be interesting to see what their take would be.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm just curious. When you were doing the meat only, were you still eating leaner cuts or did you eat fattier cuts?

Cynthia Thurlow: It's funny. I've never and it drives my husband crazy, because I'm sure for everyone listening, all of our meat prices have gone up exponentially. And my husband was grumbling about how the two ribeyes he bought were a third of the price is the filet that he bought for my birthday or whatever piece of fish I'm having. There is a cost difference, but I just feel so much better. I just don't do well with very fatty meats. And just you'll never see me using or eating duck fat fries, or using lard or tallow. Not that there's anything wrong with using those products. I just don't do well. It'll feel like I have a rock in my stomach and it's really unpleasant. I just tend and always have-- always done much better. Throughout my lifetime, it's not something that's just new to this stage of my life, but I've always craved leaner meat. 

Now, we're getting into minutiae. But for me, cartilaginous, very textured meat was just never something that appealed to me and I have a child that's the same way. There's team lean meat. There are two of us. And team fatty meat, they are or two on the other side. And generally speaking, when we buy a cow share it works out beautifully, because [laughs] there are 50% of the house likes leaner cuts and 50% is more flexible. So, it all works out. How about you? Did you always know that you were this way or was it just an evolution as you got more mature?

Melanie Avalon: When I first started doing keto back in the day, I ate fattier meats then and I ate a lot of coconut oil. [laughs] But in the context of a low-carb diet, I was much better with it. When I switched to high carb, I couldn't do the fattier meats and the high carb. It’s like I felt the fat in my system and is very like-- it’s like a feeling. But basically, the next day I just felt more sluggish. I felt I wasn't clearing the fat as much. I just feel better on lean meats. I find when it comes to craving, the thing I crave is the protein. I just crave that lean protein. So, I like fattier meats.

If I were to sit down to have a meal of a ribeye, it would be delicious, but I wouldn't feel as good from it. I don't think and that's why I was curious about when you're doing only meat. If I was doing only meat, I would be very curious. I might be better with fattier meats then, but I haven't done that in a while.

Cynthia Thurlow: No. They sent me home from the hospital telling me to eat a standard American diet. Essentially, a devoid of fiber, highly processed. And my gastroenterologist and surgeon were like, “You know exactly what to do.” And so, I recall it had to be stewed meat or braised meat. It had to be really, really cooked meat. I remember even reintroducing shellfish was a problem. It was a long journey. But I could eat a cooked burger like a champ and I probably ate burgers every day. It was one thing that my body really had a strong desire for, but it had to be a plain burger, nothing on it. Salt and pepper. That was about it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I have one more thought. Oh, so, reading his book, Steak, where he basically travels all over the world. I learned so much and tried steak in all these different countries, and tried to figure out what makes a good steak. And after reading that book, I was craving a steak. I have quite a few steaks in my freezer from ButcherBox. I will say, “Oh my goodness.” Have you had the ButcherBox filets?

Cynthia Thurlow: Mm-mm.

Melanie Avalon: They're really, really good. I love carpaccio. I pulled it out and I was like, “I wonder if I can make my own carpaccio from this?” I sliced it rare and it was so tender, it was so delicious. So, plug for ButcherBox. They have really good steaks. And our link for them is butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. I'm not sure what the offer is right now, but they usually have really good offers going. I'm excited to interview him, but I think his takeaway was that the thing that most affects flavor, it's funny how just how different the different ideas are in different countries about what makes a good steak. The USDA prime concept is just about the marbling. It's nothing about the flavor. I don't know, I think it's very misleading as far as what makes a good steak. 

And then, wait, there was one other fact. Oh, this blew my mind. The criteria for Angus steak is so arbitrary that you would think it would be from the Angus breed, but it's not. They do it based on-- The criteria is like, “Is the cow black?” Because most Angus cows are black. And then all these other criteria, but none of it is actually is it an Angus steak. So, there's all of these crazy nuances in the steak world that just blew my mind. I was like, “Oh, wow, can't trust a label.”

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I think that goes for anything here in the United States, [laughs] unfortunately.

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Melanie Avalon: So, her next question. She says, “Due to my health history, I get bloodwork frequently. My glucose is often, high 109. I don't understand. It is frustrating, because I don't eat processed foods much at all. Could alcohol affect this? Before you answer that, if I'm being honest, I'm drinking more now than ever during COVID-19, but I mostly clear liquor, tequila, and vodka, and yes, wine several days a week. If my sugar is up, can I still be successful at IF? This is very confusing to me?”

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, clearly, it sounds like you're in perimenopause. You're going to be prone to less insulin sensitivity. If you're fasting blood sugar's 109, that's high. I would be asking for a fasting insulin. I would want to know an A1c, I want to look at inflammatory markers, like, a high-sensitivity CRP, and you would be an ideal person to have a glucometer or continuous glucose monitor without question.

A lot of things impact blood sugar, sleep quality, stress management, overexercising, inflammatory foods, gut health, toxins. I would say at a bare minimum you need a deeper dive. But a blood sugar of 109, if it's been that level multiple times, it's a wakeup call that you're setting yourself up to develop some degree of insulin resistance. It's time to have an honest conversation. If you're still eating gluten, and grains, and dairy, and alcohol, and processed sugars, all of those things can exacerbate insulin resistance. So, it's really a wakeup call.

Melanie Avalon: I agree. And just speaking to the alcohol piece specifically, typically drinking alcohol in the fasted state will actually lower your blood sugar. But if you're having alcohol with your meal, it also might lower the blood sugar effect, but it's very individual. For some people, it might have the opposite effect because the body's processing the alcohol. And so, the glucose from your meal is staying elevated in your bloodstream. Again, it's a thing where you're going to have to monitor with a continuous glucose monitor to see how it's affecting you specifically, but agreed with Cynthia that it's concerning. So, definitely something to look further into.

Not to put a Band-Aid on it with a supplement, but something like berberine might also be helpful supplement to integrate into your protocol. She also says, “She thought she was in perimenopause, but then she had a full-blown cycle” and she just wanted to point that out. I think she was saying this, because I cut down this question a little bit. But Gin had an experience, I think where perimenopause and the definition of it and then having thinking you're done, and then you're not, and so, she was referring to that. Do you see that a lot with your patients, by the way, Cynthia, people who think they're at a certain point with perimenopause or menopause and then have a surprise?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, not all that often, because so, let me backtrack. Over the past two years without getting controversial, if anyone received a vaccine for a virus that we have been in a pandemic over, I'll just put it that way. I've seen a lot of women in menopause that have started menstruating, again. I've seen women that are peak cycling years that have gone on to have months, and months, and months of irregular shorter, longer cycles. So, certainly, if you fall underneath those parameters, that may be directly related to the vaccine. Let me just put that out there. 

Number two, generally, if you've gone 12 months without a menstrual cycle, you are menopausal. If you suddenly start bleeding after that 12 months that absolutely warrants seeing your GYN or your internist to make sure there's no other reason to explain why that would happen. If someone is not yet in menopause, and they have 18 months without a menstrual cycle, and then they get one that's obviously different. This is a question that is best directed to your healthcare professional. But again, if you're 51 years of age or older, that's the average age in the United States for menopause. And you have not had a period for 12 months or longer and you suddenly get a period, you need to let your GYN know that requires follow up with them. And it could turn out to be completely benign, however, you need to make sure it's not related to another issue.

Melanie Avalon: She has one last question. She said, “She's not been able to drink diet soda or regular soda since chemotherapy, which is a blessing in disguise. And she also can't consume anything with artificial lemon or lime. They all give her a horrible aftertaste. But she can have cherry or orange Tootsie Rolls, which is strange.” She says, “She knows we're not doctors, but do we have thoughts on why.” I will just say, I don't know, but I will say, after reading, I mentioned it already. But in particular, The Dorito Effect and learning the mind blowingness about all of these artificial flavors, and how they're created, and what they are, and what they do, and how they signal to our bodies. It doesn't surprise me that going through something like chemotherapy, I don't know what happened, but it has some effect and how your body is interpreting these flavors. So, that's not surprising to me.

Cynthia Thurlow: Very common for patients that have gone through chemotherapy to develop. Sometimes, it can be transient, short-term, but also long-term taste preferences. And I think it would be highly dependent on the type of chemotherapy that you received. Whatever chemo toxic agent you received, some of them may have more lingering long-term effects than others. That would be my first guess. But certainly, something to discuss with your oncology team. If this is someone else that's listening that's experiencing this, I have someone on my team who very openly talks about being aggressive cancer thriver. That's how she refers to herself. And I fervently agree with that that she definitely had a period of time transiently, where she had some taste preferences, or things that tasted metallic or cottony in her mouth that ever resolved. But I think it's largely dependent on the type of cancer you're being treated for and the type of chemo toxic drug that you received.

Melanie Avalon: Thank you. That was so helpful. I did not know that. [laughs] And also, Doreen, sending you lots of love with that whole situation with your cancer and we're happy that you caught it early. And it sounds like the chemotherapy is going well. So, very happy for you with that. She says, “I want to thank you, ladies. I feel blessed beyond words to have been able to include you in my daily life. Love and light.” Oh, she goes by D. So, thank you D for your question, which apparently was our episode. 

Cynthia Thurlow: It was a long question, but our next episode, we're going to get a couple for sure fit in. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode279. Those show notes will have a full transcript. So, definitely check that out. 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. You can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast, I am @melanieavalon, Cynthia is @cynthia_thurlow_. And again, a reminder to enter the giveaway for some goodies from Cynthia. If you have her book, Intermittent Fasting Transformation or if you don't, if you get it, which you should, just leave a review on whatever platform you bought it on. It's super easy to do and just send a screenshot of that to questions@ifpodcast.com to enter to win and this is US continental residents only. Yes, I think that is all the things. Anything from you, Cynthia, before we go?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, thank you. Keep those great questions coming. Obviously, today was an unusually long question, but we will definitely get to several on the next episode we record. 

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Well, I will talk to you next week. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Sounds good. 

Melanie Avalon: Bye. 

Thank you so much for listening to the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember, everything we discussed on this show does not constitute medical advice and no patient-doctor relationship is formed. 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, and original theme composed by Leland Cox and recomposed by Steve Saunders. See you next week.

[Transcript provided by SpeechDocs Podcast Transcription] 

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Cynthia: cynthiathurlow.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Aug 07

Episode 277: Manifestation, Vision Boards, Cholesterol, Fasting Insulin, Cassava Flour, Headaches, Cephalic Phase Insulin Response, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 277 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 Cynthia Thurlow, author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging.

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

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A FREE Sample Pack With Any Purchase! Learn All About Electrolytes In Episode 237 - Our Interview With Robb Wolf!

4:10 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At melanieavalon.com/beautycounter or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow And Use The Code CLEANFORALL20 For 20% Off PLUS Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: Melanieavalon.Com/Beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #41 - Dr. Shawn Baker

Studio Wendt Handmade Fine Jewelry

19:20 - GREEN CHEF: Go To greenchef.com/ifpodcast135 And Use Code IFPODCAST135 To Get $135 Off Including Free Shipping!

22:00 - Listener Q&A: Holly - Cholesterol Conundrum

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #126 - Azure Grant

Get $30 Off A CGM At Nutrisense.io/ifpodcast With The Code IFPODCAST

39:45 - Listener Q&A: Karen - Cassava Flour

Ep. 198 – Dispelling Myths About Hormone Replacement Therapy

Estrogen matters book

53:30 - AVALONX MAGNESIUM 8: Get On The Email List To Stay Up To Date With All The Special Offers And News About Melanie's New Supplements At avalonx.us/emaillist, And Use The Code Melanieavalon For 10% On Any Order At Avalonx.Us And MDlogichealth.Com!

56:15 - Listener Q&A: Florence - Headaches/Smells

Our content does not constitute an attempt to practice medicine, and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please consult a qualified health care provider for medical advice and answers to personal health questions.

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 277 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, biohacker and 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, Cynthia Thurlow, Nurse Practitioner and author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and cynthiathurlow.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or a treatment and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. So, pour yourself a mug of black coffee, a cup of tea, or even a glass of wine, if it's that time, and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

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And/or have you heard of something called the keto flu? Here's the thing. The keto flu is not actually a condition. Keto flu just refers to a bundle of symptoms, headaches, fatigue, muscle cramps, and insomnia that people experience in the early stages of keto dieting. Here's what's going on. When you eat a low carb diet, your insulin levels drop. Low insulin in turn lowers the production of the hormone, aldosterone. Now, aldosterone is made in the kidneys, and it helps you retain sodium. So, low aldosterone on a keto diet makes you lose sodium at a rapid rate. And even if you are consciously consuming electrolytes, you might not be getting enough. In particular, you need electrolytes, especially sodium and potassium, in order for nerve impulses to properly fire. Electrolytes can easily be depleted while intermittent fasting.

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And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? When it comes to weight loss, we focus a lot on what and when we eat. It makes sense, because these foods affect our hormones and how our bodies store and burn fat. But do you know what is possibly one of the most influential factors in weight gain? It's not your food and it's not fasting, it's actually our skincare and makeup. As it turns out, Europe has banned over a thousand compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup in the US due to their toxicity. These include endocrine disrupters, which mess with your hormones, carcinogens linked to cancer, and obesogens, which literally can cause your body to store and gain weight. Basically, when we're using conventional skincare and makeup, we are giving these obesogenic compounds direct access to our bloodstream.

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All right, now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 277 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Cynthia Thurlow. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Hey, Melanie. How are you?

Melanie Avalon: I'm good. I feel like it's been such a long time since we've talked.

Cynthia Thurlow: [laughs] I know. Business travel is wonderful, but it's also hard to fit in all the things alongside that. And so, thank you for letting me have the bandwidth because I didn't get home, I had four hours asleep when I got home on Sunday, and probably would not have been as mentally sharp and acute as I am right now after having a good amount of sleep for a few days in a row. I love doing business events and certainly KetoCon was fantastic. But three solid days of an introvert trying to pretend to be an extrovert is challenging.

Melanie Avalon: Yes, we were just talking about this, our common introvertedness. I'm really curious about KetoCon. Okay, have you attended KetoCon before?

Cynthia Thurlow: I had not. I had not and I was asked to keynote the first day, which was really cool. And so many of my close friends in the low carb Keto community were there. And so, it was really nice to see people in person again and connect with so many people that have been impacted by this podcast, my other podcast, and the book. And so, to me, I was very heartfelt. I do fervently believe that the Keto community is one of the most supportive communities in which events that I've spoken to. And so, for me, it's a lot of connecting with friends and meeting people. Austin's a great foodie city. It was nice to participate in that. For me, so much of its reconnecting with our roots really having the ability to connect with people that we impact their lives so profoundly and that's really a blessing. 

And so, as hard as it is for me as an introvert to spend three days being, going from full day events into parties or events in the evening. I always remind myself how incredibly fortunate I am to have a platform to stand on to be able to advocate for women. And so, I come home and then I can't talk for two days. I'm just so wiped out, but I really had a great. I think they were having some massive heat surge while I was there. It was like 105. And they would talk about it being humid. But you and I know it humid weather. It’s like it didn't feel humid to me as an East Coast or it just felt like an oven. It genuinely felt like an oven and that was fascinating. I was like, “How do people deal with this heat being so intense?” It's hot all day long. It's not like you get up in the morning and it's 20 degrees cooler. It was like an oven 24/7. And so, that I found that really fascinating. That's one of the things I love about traveling is just experiencing new weather, new people, new things.

Melanie Avalon: Did you meet any podcast listeners from this show?

Cynthia Thurlow: Not specifically, although. It was interesting. I kept having people introduce me as, “This is Cynthia Thurlow, she has her own podcast, and then she also has a podcast with Melanie.” And so, definitely, there's some recognizableness within that community of individuals who were aware of IF Podcast and so.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, cool. Other people would say that when they were--? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: That's fun.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. No, and it's nice. It's nice to have that added side. When I would talk about the fact, like, I have my own podcast and then I cohost a podcast with a good friend of mine, and people would oftentimes say like, “Did you and Melanie just were had you been friends up until that point?” I was like, “Yeah, we've been friends for three years.” So, it was very serendipitous when this opportunity came up. To me, podcasting is one of the best ways for people to get to know you, and to get to know what you stand for, and what you advocate for. And so, as you and I always say, podcasting is some of the best networking you can do. For me, meeting a lot of people that I had been on their podcast or they have been online was really neat. 

As an example, Dr. Gabrielle Lyon and I are good friends. We text multiple times a week and talk on the phone, much like you and I do. And then meeting like Shawn Baker, and Shawn Baker, for anyone who doesn't know, he's 6’5”, 225 pound, just this massive orthopedic surgeon who is this gentle giant. It was so enjoyable to meet him in person, just a really nice, low-key guy who's changing the narrative about meat and certainly, anti-inflammatory diets. And so, to me, it's always a blessing when the person that you think someone is ends up being exactly how they are. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love that. Yeah, for listeners, he's like the carnivore guy. You've had him on your show as well, right?

Cynthia Thurlow: I have, I have. I've been on his podcast and he's just very low key, which I think is really refreshing, because there are people in the health and wellness space that are loud and obnoxious. Thankfully, not a lot of them. But there are people that are out there that there's nothing subtle about their message. I recognize we have to make space for everyone. Everyone may have a different approach. I tend to have a softer approach. But to me, it's really nice when you meet someone in person and they're as they appear to be. That's how I would say it. And certainly, Ben Azadi, and Dr. Anna Cabeca, and Mindy Pelz, and so many people that I know in that space, it was really fortuitous and nice. It's just a nice community of humans. Everyone that was there really a great lineup of professionals. There was actually someone I was thinking about for you for your podcast when bringing your mind, Chris Palmer. He's a Harvard MD, but he talks about metabolic health in relationship to mental health and has a book coming out this fall. When I was talking to him, I was like, “Oh, my gosh, I absolutely need to bring you on, because that's a totally different angle than not a lot of people are talking about.” And so, there were some really cool people there.

Melanie Avalon: I do remember interviewing Shawn Baker, because I remember I had interviewed Paul Saladino a few times. He's very intense in his messaging. I remember interviewing Shawn Baker and thinking, “Okay, this will be the approachable episode for people who might less intense, more welcoming, more casual in general, and just approachable.” I really like him.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. I'll never forget having a conversation with JJ Virgin recently, and she was saying how important it is for people to remain humble. She's like, “No matter someone's success. No one wants to be around an asshat.” I was like, “That is true. That is so true.” That's my PC way of saying conceptualizing that. Some people get really famous and they're not particularly nice individuals. So, it's always a pleasure when you can connect with people and find out that what you see online is really how they are.

Melanie Avalon: I agree. Can I tell you a really funny story that happened to me? So, I saw this past weekend Blue Man Group, have you seen Blue Man Group before? 

Cynthia Thurlow: I have not, but I know what they are. 

Melanie Avalon: I was really excited to see them. I sat in the front row, which is really exciting. I remember thinking, because I launched my Magnesium the night before, actually. So, that was launch day of the magnesium and I was thinking, “Man, I wish I could somehow get my Magnesium to the Blue Man,” because I'm sure could help with their drumming, and their intense activity, and everything. And if listeners would like to learn more about the Magnesium, actually, last week, Episode 276 was with Cynthia and Scott, our partner at MD Logic. So, check out that interview. That was like a little baby goal, but I wasn't going to actively pursue it. I saw the show, I sat in the front row, it was fabulous. I went home, posted about the group on my stories, and then I followed some of the members. One of the Blue Man from that show DMed me and said like, “Hey, I saw you in the front row--” 

I had been posting about the Magnesium. So, he said, “Hey, I saw you in the front row. It's nice to see that your magnesium fam. My mother just sent me this to help with the drumming and everything and it was BiOptimizers Magnesium.” I was like, “What are the odds?” Then I was like, “Oh, that's actually the magnesium.” I was like, “We are sponsor” and that's actually how I formulate in mine based on theirs what I liked from theirs and just making it a little bit better for me personally. So, I sent the whole group some of my Magnesium.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. You manifested that. That's awesome. 

Melanie Avalon: Isn't that hysterical?

Cynthia Thurlow: I love it. It’s serendipitous.

Melanie Avalon: I know. What are the odds that what do I get my damn box, but a picture BiOptimizers Magnesium from the Blue Man? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. That’s the thing. Manifestation, so, my 14-year-old hates that word. He's very black and white. And so, I was trying to explain to him. Last week, I had shared with you. I put someone on a vision board four years ago and their team reached out and wanted me to come on the podcast. It was really one of those moments that manifestation is really powerful. And so, you were thinking about, you wanted to find a way to interact with them and then ended up happening. And so, I think, for all of us listening have a vision board. Have something that you, or a goal, or something that's very concrete and you can make it happen.

Melanie Avalon: And the fact that I specifically was thinking like, “Oh, how do I get some Magnesium in their hands” and then literally came to me. [laughs] So, yeah. But I do really recommend them, by the way, for anybody who has not seen that show. It was really fabulous.

Cynthia Thurlow: I really liked theater. I feel the past two years has really thrown that off, because we used to live in Washington, D.C. and we went to the Kennedy Center and my kids grew up seeing theater. I grew up seeing the theater in New York City. And so, for me, I feel we took this to your pause which was such a bummer. We really get some great performances in the Washington, D.C. area. And so, I was actually saying to the kids, I was like, “Maybe we should do Hamilton, but we'll do that in New York. I think that would be awesome in the fall.”

Melanie Avalon: Hamilton is amazing. You will love it.

Cynthia Thurlow: I know. That's like they're old enough. Now, we can trek up there, and see that, and enjoy it, and come back, because now, we're in a smaller city and the statistical likelihood we're going to have Hamilton come here is probably a little smaller.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I absolutely, absolutely love that show. It’d be excited to hear if you do see it.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I have it on my list of things. I'm like, “Okay, the things that will happen are--" 

Melanie Avalon: [unintelligible [00:18:38] [chuckles] And actually, I just realized, I probably should do a quick plug. The Blue Man guy who messaged me about the Magnesium, his name was Steven and he actually has a very cool company. I'll put a link to in the show notes. It's called studiowendt.com. It's studio W-E-N-D-T dotcom. And he actually melts down jewelry and makes it into new jewelry. That's very cool. So, if people are looking for unique custom jewelry, you can order direct, I think from him or you can get your own stuff melted down and remade. So, I'll put a link to that in the show notes. 

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Melanie Avalon: In any case, shall we jump into questions for today?

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: All right. To start things off, we have a question from Holly and the subject is: “cholesterol conundrum.” And Holly says, “Hi, Melanie and Cynthia, I just heard the big news yesterday and I'm saddened that Gin will no longer be on the podcast, but I'm so excited to hear that Cynthia is joining you. I am such a super fan of you ladies. I just finished Cynthia's latest book and learned so much. I have been intermittent fasting since December 2019, and have lost close to 35 pounds overall, and I'm so happy with this lifestyle. I had the pleasure of being a guest on Gin’s, Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast as well, Episode 153. Anyways, to my question, I recently had Regular Labs completed and although my primary doc said that all my levels are normal, I am concerned about my cholesterol. My total cholesterol was 217, and LDL was 132, HDL was 70 and trigs was 76. The last time I had Labs was September 2020 and my numbers were total cholesterol 205, LDL 124, HDL 66 and trigs 74. Also, my A1C was 5.6% in 2022 and 5.4% in 2020. I'm concerned because heart disease runs in my family. My grandfather passed away in his early 50s from a sudden heart attack and my father passed away at 72 due to heart disease. 

My question is, should I be concerned with the numbers creeping up? If so, what are some of the best ways to improve the numbers, a low fat diet, less saturated fat and more unsaturated? I know not all fats are bad and I'm just confused as to what would be the best fats for me in this situation, or is just trying to avoid saturated fats and inflammatory oils best. I love more direction particularly on how Cynthia might advise clients in similar situations. Not sure if this matters, but for background, I am 49 years young, 5’2”,115 pounds. I work out seven days per week, but nothing too strenuous. Mainly walking and strength training as well. I do eat relatively healthy such as Whole Foods with some dairies such as cheese, no milk, and eggs. I do love red meat, but maybe that might be an area to tweak, such as eating less red meat and increase seafood or lean meats. Thanks so much for the both of you for all you do and I look forward to hopefully hearing back soon. A sincere super fan, Holly.”

Cynthia Thurlow: Oh, well, Holly, thank you for the very detailed question and congratulations on the progress you've made. That's amazing so far. When you listed your Labs, I didn't see anything that looked statistically significant between the Labs from 2020 and currently. Your total cholesterol looks okay. LDL, the only thing that I would say and I don't think an LDL of 132 is bad at all is that if you're really curious to know, you can look for an advanced lipid analysis. Some internist and primary care providers are savvy with these types of Labs, others are not. When we're looking at particle size, it actually breaks down the LDL to look at whether or not you have light, fluffy, buoyant LDL or if you have a predominant of small, dense atherogenic, those that are more prone to producing plaque and inflammation. 

If we really look at what drives cardiovascular disease and heart attacks, and we know women present statistically very differently. Men typically present with a classic crushing chest pain, left arm pain. Women may have symptoms as subtle as fatigue or shortness of breath. I'm sure your primary care provider is monitoring you carefully. I'm not sure if you've actually had a baseline stress test that may be something to discuss with them. But when I start looking at strong family history, certainly, our grandparent’s generation, a lot of them smoked. And so, that can be a major risk factor for developing cardiovascular disease. I also think a great deal about insulin resistance. So, A1C is helpful to a point. But I actually order less of those now and order a great deal more targeted lab work like a fasting insulin. This is a test that's covered by insurance, I see a lot of perimenopausal women. And 49 years young and I'm glad that you use the word young. 

49 years of age, you are close to menopause, if not already there. Average age in the United States is 51 and we do become more insulin resistant as we get older and that has a lot to do with the fluctuating and reduction in estradiol, which is our predominant form of estrogen prior to going through menopause. I think at a minimum, you need a fasting insulin drawn. I would want to be looking at your fasting blood sugars, seeing the net impact of your meals. You didn't really identify if you prioritize protein. And certainly, in perimenopausal, menopausal females, it's absolutely critical that you are prioritizing protein for a number of different reasons. I know everyone hears me talk about this a lot. The role of sarcopenia, which is muscle loss with aging can also contribute to insulin resistance. As you're losing muscle, you are losing this metabolically active tissue. And so, if you're not getting sufficient amounts of protein in your diet and I can't tell from what you've identified here. Animal-based protein is going to be superior to plant-based protein in terms of the amino acid composition. 

I just listened to a lecture with Dr. Gabrielle Lyon at KetoCon last week and I love that she was providing some context of what her recommendations are. And so, no less than hundred grams of protein a day as a female and then also no more than 30 to 40 grams of carbohydrate per meal. That is important, especially in a middle-aged person. So, not really fully understanding what types of protein you're gravitating towards. I think that's also very important. Getting the additional labs fasting insulin, inflammatory markers like high sensitivity, CRP, really looking at homocysteine, really, really looking more deeply at your LDL particle size, which I would imagine would probably be quite good. And then I think about other hormones. Thyroid hormone, sex hormones, really digging deep. IGF-1, which is a clinical marker for growth hormone, how that is going on as well. I think I would want to get more information. 

I don't think it sounds like you're doing anything wrong. But I do think with your baseline family history, a baseline treadmill stress test, I know a lot of clinicians and cardiologists are leaning towards chemical stress tests or stress values, which I think are completely reasonable. Meaning, they can put you on a treadmill and also give you a specific tracer to see what's going on with blood flow to the heart is certainly very reasonable. But I would think from my perspective, I would really want to make sure that your insulin sensitivity is optimized. You're not a very big person, but I do see some degree of insulin resistance even in smaller, more petite women. And so, I think looking at things from a very comprehensive perspective would allow us to be able to give more targeted recommendations. So, what I'm saying is, I think you're doing a lot of really good things. We need more information, more Labs, I'd love to know what your macro breakdown is. I love that you're already omitting inflammatory seed oil. So, lots of protein, right types of healthy fats, optimizing your carbohydrate intake, and that really is something that is a very powerful N of 1. If you're not using a glucometer or continuous glucose monitor, I would also advocate that we have a sense of what your blood sugar response is to your food intake as well. What do you think, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: I thought that was extremely comprehensive and fabulous. Yeah, just some quick comments. For listeners, they might benefit from listening to my interview with Azure Grant. She does a lot of work with ultradian rhythms, which are 24-hour rhythms in the body. A lot of her work was used to develop work with Oura Ring. So, that's why I had her on the show. But she has a really fast seating study, where they-- It was a small study. I thought it was very telling, where they looked at, I don't remember how many people were in it. It wasn't that many, but they basically tested their cholesterol levels like we do with the CGM testing or blood sugar all day, but they did it with their cholesterol all day. Every single participant in the group fluctuated wildly with their cholesterol levels based on just the moment to moment like we do with our blood sugar. And actually, every single person in the study at one point had one of their markers crossed into a risk factor category, which I thought was just really fascinating. 

Basically, the takeaway is not to be concerned about your cholesterol. It's that Holly's test right there was just a snapshot of that one moment. And so, it could have been different, even within that day significantly. And so, it's hard to even know how different it is from the two years prior that she tested, because just to how much it can change. There's that factor. How do you feel Cynthia about the HDL to trig ratio or is it trig-to HDL? Wait, what’s the order of it?

Cynthia Thurlow: Usually, trig to HDL, typically.

Melanie Avalon: How do you feel about that?

Cynthia Thurlow: I kind of eyeball. Meaning, I'll look at the triglycerides, 76 to 70 and then I decide if I need to actually make that calculation, a lot of the insulin resistant, obese overweight patients I used to work with would sometimes have triglycerides in the 300s or 400s, and then they would have very low logic, HDL, so, 20, 30. And then I would be forced to calculate it to really hone in on them that there's really a lot of work to do. But when I see them at a normalized ratio, sometimes, what I'll look at is the fasting insulin to have a sense of how much work we need to do. I'll give an example. I recently had a woman talk a lot about weight loss resistance, which hack-- So many of us deal with that, right? It's very common. Her primary is only doing fasting glucose and A1C, and of course, they “looked fine.” I said, “Ask for a fasting insulin. Just ask for one Lab.” And so, they did fasting insulin and it was 12. I said, “Well, now, we know. Fasting insulin’s up, then you're going to struggle to lose weight.” And so, we worked very targetedly. Did I just make up a word?

Melanie Avalon: Targetedly.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, targetedly. We made some very targeted recommendations, so that she could improve her insulin sensitivity. And three months later, when she retested, it was within normal limits. I think on a lot of levels, when I'm looking at labs, it's big picture to decide like, “What do we need to do next?” But yes, in a lot of instances, you're looking at that comparison of triglycerides to HDL to really get a sense of, is someone really metabolically healthy or are they not and they have work to do?

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. And then I wanted to comment. We were talking a little bit before this, but your comment about the A1C, it's interesting, because I actually, of course, I mentioned Peter Attia on every episode. I was listening to an episode recently where he was going on and on about the problems with HbA1c and how basically, a big factor in it can be how fast your red blood cells turnover. So, basically, if they're turning over faster, you might have a seemingly better A1C, but you actually might still have issues. Whereas if you have longer living red blood cells, that gives them a longer time to become glycated. And so, then you have a higher A1C, but it might not actually be telling about what's actually happening with your blood sugar levels, which is why Cynthia said, wearing a continuous glucose monitor, for example, might be something to check out. 

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The only other thing I was going to comment on was that she was asking a lot about the types of fats and things like that. And Cynthia did comment on that. The cholesterol thing is something that-- It's funny. I haven't had an episode on it yet, dedicated to it yet on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. Because I feel I've just been passively gathering information for years. Dave Feldman, right?

Cynthia Thurlow: And listeners will be hammered to have me say this. I almost got a lipidologist There was a certification that we could take and some of the MPs and MDs did, and I got very close to doing it, and I opted not which was a good decision. But so, I can very much nerd out on lipids. Dave is next level. I had a conversation with Dave at an event in Salt Lake City and about 15 minutes into the conversation, I was like, “Timeout.” Any conceptual concept I had ever known and I do understand things at a very deep level, he's next level. He's an engineer with a very fresh perspective. I think you would completely love nerding out with him about cholesterol, and the lipid hypothesis, and lean mass hyper responders. It's fascinating.

Melanie Avalon: Where does he exist-- if it can even be said succinctly, where does he exist in the--? People on carnivore diets or low carb diets who actually have really high LDL levels and say, “It's not a problem,” does he have thoughts on that very basic idea?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. We actually spoke about an individual that we both know, who has very, very high LDL while on a carnivore diet. He himself and I witnessed a meeting multiple times over the weekend. He's definitely carnivore-ish, low carb ketogenic in his approach and that works really well for him. But he had some interesting insights. He's doing a lot of research, which-- I think most importantly, he's changing the narrative for clinicians and he's doing it in a way that is generating a great deal of high-quality research. And bravo to the engineers in the world. They have just very unique angles.

Melanie Avalon: I love that. I'm definitely happy to connect with him. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I'll be happy to do an intro. He's lovely.

Melanie Avalon: Thank you. I love that. My like which is very, not super informed, but just from the-- I feel I've been passively absorbing information regarding cholesterol through osmosis for years. I'm trying to just build up my bank of thoughts about it, because I'm very much torn about a lot of the debates surrounding it. Just like the saturated fat one, for example. I know people on the low carb and carnivore sphere will often say that, “It doesn't matter and all the saturated fat.” But that does seem one thing, where if you do switch saturated fats for mono unsaturated fats, for example or more unsaturated fats, that it possibly can have a favorable effect on those levels. I'm not going to ponder what that actually means, but I think that is something that is seen. So, it's definitely something that people can try. That's a very vague approach to that.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think it's important to find balance. There are people who tend to be more focused on saturated fat found in animal meats and they don't eat as many of the-- And I'm rarely will you hear me use this term, plan- based fats. But I think they're equally important. And so, for me, personally, I do better as an example with leaner meat, but I can do fats in the plant-based variety and digest them really well. And so, maybe doing a little bit of experimentation to see what makes you feel good, I think is completely reasonable. But not to fear, fat, that is unfortunate that we have propagated that as a medical community for a long, long time.

Melanie Avalon: I think because there was that fat fear, then there was a counter regulatory response that was very intense in the other direction, which was like, “All the saturated fat and all the butter forever and ever and pounds of it.” I don't know that that is necessarily the best thing, either. [laughs] Maybe there's just a more nuanced approach to everything. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, I agree with you, Melanie. I think that one of the mistakes I see, women in particular making is, their husband does keto, their boyfriend, their significant other, their mom, their dad does keto and loses a bunch of weight, and it's not to suggest that a low carb lifestyle is not a good idea. It's how we go about doing it. Fat is calorically more dense than protein and carbs. And so, it's just important to understand that a whole avocado although the healthy, yes, has a lot more calories than people realize. And so, the quantity of fats that you have to be careful about, it might be that you just measure. I always say, “I tolerate a quarter of an avocado.” I'm a 50-year-old woman, I'm okay with that, I measure my nuts, I love macadamia nuts, I measure them out. I measure MCT oil, I measure olive oil for me personally, because it is easy to overeat. And then, all of a sudden, you've derailed your best efforts at managing an anti-inflammatory nutrient dense diet.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. I agree. If people are eating all Whole Foods base or I guess, even not Whole Foods base, but a lot of times, we will be eating up ancestral type diet. But if there's some foods that will, I think easily encourage weight gain, it's nuts and dairy products.

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. Slippery slope. 

Melanie Avalon: Yep. So, okay, Holly, hopefully, that was helpful. Shall we go on to our next question?

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. This is Karen. The subject is: “cassava flour.” “Hi, Melanie and Cynthia. I've been listening to you for three years now and love every episode. I'm a 63-year-old retired OB nurse.” Yay. “Since I've retired, I started watching my weight, sugars and flours due to increase weight gain. I have been intermittent fasting and, in the beginning, lost weight, but now, have regained 15 pounds and can't seem to lose anything. I still do 16 to 18-hour fast, clean and unclean. Wore a CGM for a month to see if I have sugar problems. Had blood work and I'm not insulin resistant. I use the sweeteners that are safe and oils that are not toxic. I exercise three times a week at the gym, do walking and weightlifting, and I don't overdo it. I feel frustrated. I get confused about foods. 

Recently, I've been trying different grain-free pasta and found one by jovial made with cassava flour, but heard that it might be a toxic grain. I would like both your opinions on it and sorghum pasta as well. I have lymphocytic colitis and I'm supposed to be doing lectin free. I bought Dr. Gundry’s books and try to follow lectin free as much as I can. I love pasta and I have tried zoodle noodles, but I just don't like them. I know this is a lot to talk about. Thanks for all the great research and work you both do. I look forward to listening to you at the gym and I've learned so much from your podcast. Thanks, and good luck with your careers. Karen.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Karen. So, thank you so much for your question. I did a deep dive into all of these different flours. It's funny. There's so many alternative flours in the grain free world. The go to ones are usually coconut and almond flour. I find but they are these other different ones. So, cassava? I learned so much about cassava. Do you ever cook with cassava, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I do, because I have a kiddo with a nut allergy. And so, I've had to balance finding gluten free flours that are nut free. And so, I think cassava flour, especially, Otto’s is the flour that for me most mimics what wheat flour does when you bake with it. And so, we've had a lot of success. But it's not low carb. So, let me just make that clear. It's not a low carb option, but it's a nice option to have.

Melanie Avalon: It's funny. Basically, just hit all the points I had about it. [laughs] They were that it's paleo, but it's also AIP and it is nut free. So, check. Closest in texture and properties to all regular, all-purpose flour. You just said that. Check. And then that it's not low carb, that it's actually pretty high carb. It's actually fun fact. The third highest yield of carbohydrates per person in many parts of the world following sugar cane and sugar beets. It's also low oxalate. So, that's a nice benefit. And the toxin I guess, she's referring to is it has a toxin in it called cyanogenic glycosides. Those are actually also found in almonds and spinach, but I believe they are addressed in how it is processed or cooked. But I'm guessing that's what she's referring to. It sounds like it's a good flour. And Cynthia has used it as well, but it is high carb. Keep in mind. I didn't realize that tapioca starch is actually made from cassava as well.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. It's interesting. Obviously, I have teenage boys, and they're both very athletic and lean. So, they can manage the carbohydrate influx. I made banana bread with cassava flour, and then I basically told my family, “They need to eat it or I'm going to chuck it, because I can't eat it. It's just too high carb it for me.” But I think that it's certainly an option for those people that are out there that need a gluten free option for sure.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, and then also interesting, something I didn't know was that arrowroot starch, I always thought arrow-- I learned so much, Karen, with this question. I always thought arrowroot starch was that it was a thing. Arrowroot was a plant, but it's not. It's actually a combination of different things, one of which is tapioca starch. That blew my mind. I was like, “Oh, okay.” Well then, the other one she asked about was sorghum and that actually is a green, but it's gluten free and it's low glycemic, higher and fiber and protein. Have you tried sorghum? I have not.

Cynthia Thurlow: I have not. I'll be honest and this may be controversial. But when I decided to go gluten free, I found I didn't miss pasta. My mother is Italian. She would probably be disappointed to hear that. I really don't miss pasta. I've been able to get away with spaghetti squash and zoodles. I generally sometimes miss bread, but for me, I haven't tried all the varieties of gluten free pastas. They're out there, because I think for me, I just got more interested in feeling better and I just don't do well with the alternatives. I don't feel good, I know it messes up my blood sugar. As I said, when I was talking about being around like-minded people at this event last week, I was like, “It's nice to be around people who don't have to explain myself.” So, I think each one of us have to decide what works for us and what impacts our blood sugar. Obviously, finding healthier alternatives and things that you really love that you're no longer eating, probably, a long explanation, but it's an honest one.

Melanie Avalon: Like my favorite meal, pre-dietary changes was definitely like Alfredo pasta. I just couldn't eat it now probably, because I think I wouldn't digest it well. It would just sit in me. When it comes to the flours, I've used the coconut flour and the almond flour for making baked good type things. But I haven't used these ones that she talked about. Cynthia, did you say that you'd looked up some options?

Cynthia Thurlow: I did. Cappello is one that's made with almond flour. If you're not oxalate sensitive, that might be an option. It's usually refrigerated. They have pizza crusts and all sorts of pasta options. There were things like hearts of palm, which I've tried and I can honestly say, I've tried it multiple ways in an effort to be able to recommend it. It was just a mushy mess, so that probably wouldn't be my first suggestion. There are some things like chickpea pastas and I'm fervently a believer that the processed food industry is desperately trying to corner the market continuing to encourage people to eat pasta despite this. I've just come to find that some of the bonza pastas that are made with chickpea flour, some people enjoy them. I just think it requires a degree of flexibility. 

And certainly, depending on where your live stage monitoring your blood sugar response, because maybe Karen as an example can have some chickpea pasta and to be completely 100% fair. I don't know, where that falls in the lectin category or not, because that's just not an area of focus of mine. But finding an alternative and maybe keeping the portion small, if that's something you really love and really miss. But Cappello is because it's almond flour is going to be a lower carb option than many of these other suggestions we've talked about.

Melanie Avalon: I actually also really like pumpkin seed flour. I've had that before. There's a one I really like. I think I talked about it when we were talking about vegan protein powder alternatives. Did you ever go through--? I went through this phase when I first went low carb and I feel a lot of people did, the shirataki noodles. 

Cynthia Thurlow: They smell bad. That was something I wrote down in my notes, but I actually, just like the hearts of palm, the shirataki noodles smell bad. I'm one of those people like, if something doesn't smell appealing, I can't eat it. 

Melanie Avalon: They smell like formaldehyde. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. They smell very much like a preservative laden product. And so, I bought them once. Once. I know people swear by them, but they stunk. Just like the hearts of palm, that was a mushy mess. And so, it's hard for me to find something that mimics what I recall pasta really acting like. But the Cappello's, in my house, it has been popular. But my kids are going through this phase as teenagers that they want to be able to eat whatever they want. And so, we've had to bring in some organic pasta into the house to appease their desires to still eat gluten containing pasta.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I definitely went through that phase. If listeners haven't had it, if you remember high school lab when you would dissect things and that formaldehyde, that is what they smell like. It's actually not the noodles. It's what they're preserved in. I would like, “Boy, you can boil them and it goes away and you don't taste it.” But actually, the main problem for me was, they literally are just indigestible fiber. So, they have no calories and they would just sit-- If I would eat them now, they would probably sit in me for days. That was back when I was digesting things better. So, yes. But thank you for those resources. And also, do we want to comment on the first part of Karen's question, just her a little bit her issues with not losing weight?

Cynthia Thurlow: Weight loss resistance, that's definitely a common theme. I think when you're a menopausal female, you have to change your relationship with your macros and you have to be focused on protein, limiting carbohydrates, right types of healthy fats in the right quantities. I also think about sleep quality. Seven, eight hours of high-quality sleep, how do you define that? Cold dark room, waking up rested, being able to fall and stay asleep. Stress management? No, it's not a joke and it's not five minutes meditation once a week. As a menopausal female, you have to actively work at this. I speak from personal experience that I know when I'm not doing enough stress management and that has to be an active practice day to day. I think about just inflammation. Karen mentioned that she had worn a CGM. What's your fasting insulin? Well, these are common themes that I will respond to, but digging a little deeper, because of fasting blood sugar, your fasting blood sugars can still be decent. What's your response to your meals? 

If your blood sugar is going up? 25, 30, 40 points, you're not eating the right combination of. micronutrients. And then I also think about gut health and there's no menopausal or perimenopausal woman that I have looked at stool samples on that does not have some degree of dysbiosis. Dysbiosis is non-beneficial bacteria in the gut and it's exacerbated by stress. There's no one listening that hasn't experienced more stress in the last two years of our lives. And certainly, a nurse had a lot of stress in her occupation, but now, in retirement, maybe not as much but really looking at gut health due to latent infection. 

The other thing that I think about are just toxins in general that we're exposed to cumulatively throughout our lifetime. Environment, personal care products, food, all can tip over that bucket. When a woman in perimenopause or menopause is talking about weight loss resistance, you have to get honest with yourself. Sometimes, that's a hard thing to do. It may be, you really have to back off on intensely fasting, really making sure that you're eating enough food. I would imagine if you're doing 16 or 18-hour fast that you are very likely getting at least two meals in a day, but are you eating enough protein? Are you eating too many carbs? We can't eat unfortunately. In middle age, you cannot eat like you did when you were 20. It is a sad fact, but you can't. And so, there are many, many variables that I think could be at play. 

The unfortunate thing is, weight loss resistance is such a common, common problem that when a woman reports this to her internist, GYN, etc., sometimes, that gets brushed under the rug and you're told, “It's just the way things are at x age,” which I fervently disagree with. But also going back to what I was saying earlier, fasting insulin, what's your thyroid doing? Are you on hormone replacement therapy? No woman should be afraid of replacing hormones. No one. There's a great book. I actually interviewed Dr. Avrum Bluming and Carol Tavris on the podcast. The book is Estrogen Matters. There's a whole generation of women that are scared of taking HRT, there are a whole generation of clinicians that are afraid to prescribe HRT, and there are many, many variables. I know that was a lot of information, but it just goes to demonstrate that there are many, many factors of why middle-aged women can deal with weight loss resistance and it really requires diligence, and patience, and a little bit more digging.

Melanie Avalon: I agree with all of that. Yeah, one of the things I look at first and I guess, the first thing you mentioned was the macros, for example. Because it sounds like she's doing Dr. Gundry’s, which we've both interviewed Dr. Gundry. So, we can put links in the show notes to our interviews with him. Actually, maybe that's not the best diet we’ve following. Maybe lectin free isn't where the focus should be and it should be something else more comprehensive with the food like the macros. So, focusing on higher Whole Foods protein intake, I often say, trying either low carb or low fat. It might be, especially if she's doing cassava pasta, for example. It might be that she's at this spot of eating seemingly Whole Foods and lectin free, but eating both high carb and high fat together, she could be. And that might be a combination that's not quite working, where you actually need to be doing one or the other. So, that's something I really love to focus on, but there's a lot there. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. 

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Melanie Avalon: I think we have time for one more question and this comes from Florence. And the subject is: “headaches/smells. And Florence says, “I've been experimenting with time restricted eating for about 18 months. But after reading Delay, Don't Deny and Fast. Feast. Repeat., I started proper IF in April of this year. Post the 28-day fast start, I've been doing one meal a day, Monday through Friday and approximately 14:10 eating window at the weekend since May, about six weeks now. I never weighed with scales. So, I can only go off how my clothes feel and using a tape measure. So far, I've definitely lost a few inches, but post the fast start, I was hoping it would have been a few more. I keep going through as I'm interested in the other health benefits, not just the weight loss or maintenance. Anyway, having binge listen to a lot of your episodes, I think it's probably the wine I drink at the weekend, which is holding me back. But my question today, isn't how to lose more inches? Although, any advice you may have about tweaks, I could make to my eating window would be appreciated. 

My main question is about headaches. I still experienced them and I worry that fasting could be causing them Should I just power through? I'm definitely clean fasting and I drink a lot of water, but I worry that other things like smells can be triggering an insulin response which caused my headaches. For example, the smell of my kids’ bagels in the morning or helping the kids at school chop up their dinner at lunch. There's not a lot I can do to avoid smells, though, is there? But I do wonder whether I should take supplements in case my headaches are due to a lack of magnesium or something like that. Currently, I take a multivitamin and my eating window as an insurance policy. Other than the headaches, I feel good fasting and I especially find it easy when I'm busy at work. 

I'm a primary school teacher. I have just as much if not more energy during the school day, but I will get a slump at lunchtime. When the kids have gone home and I'm reaching for the painkillers more than I'd like. Did I have headaches before IF? Yes, but not as many. Food use to help them go away. Thanks for any advice you're able to give. Best wishes, Florence.” All right, headaches and smells. Cynthia, do you have thoughts?

Cynthia Thurlow: I do. My thoughts are all over the place. I think about water and electrolytes and I would imagine that a teacher probably can't stay as hydrated ideally as she would like to be given the fact she's in front of a classroom of students all day long. I think about where is she in her menstrual cycle, if she's still getting a cycle, because we know that there is an uptick and propensity for developing headaches, especially as women are north of 35 north of 40, there's usually a preponderance of more headaches prior to menopause. It could be cyclical. I also think about magnesium is a slow muscle relaxant and so, could it be a tension headache? She doesn't describe what sounds like typical migraine symptoms. And so, my first thought would be, hydration and electrolytes, potentially the right formulation of magnesium. 

I also think about where she is life stage, because we definitely see more women reporting headaches symptoms in perimenopause. Again, I don't know how young Florence is. Heading up into menopause that a lot of women that have had headaches throughout their lifetime, once they go through menopause, they have much less headaches. And then the piece about alcohol, I don't know if per se there's a interrelationship, but I definitely see a lot of weight loss resistance around just alcohol use. There's a lot of research that's starting to support this as well. Again, life stages important. If you're in perimenopause, the 10 to 15 years preceding menopause, that could be a larger issue. But I think based on what she's suggesting here, it's more that the headaches are of greater concern. How about you?

Melanie Avalon: I was going to say that about electrolytes for sure. And actually, LMNT is a sponsor on today's show. So, check out the ad that we ran for them. We have a really great offer for them. They're actually giving a free sample pack with any purchase. So, we'll put a link to that in the show notes. But that is at drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. And just a note about that, the unflavored raw one, that's the one that is clean, fast, friendly. All the other ones would be for during your eating window. But yes, I was thinking electrolytes, also thinking magnesium. So, my AvalonX Magnesium might be a great thing to try. I'm really fascinated by-- Well, her thoughts that smelling something releases insulin, which causes the headaches. Would that be from a drop in blood sugar that would cause the headaches? What would be the mechanism there?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. Could you get a headache when you're hypoglycemic? Absolutely. She did mention that she gets slumps at lunchtime. I don't know, if that's preceding or after eating meals. There's definitely things that could precipitate that-- The fact that she's sensitive to smells makes me think there could be a migraine component to this, because I used to have migraines prior to going gluten free and I was very sensitive to smells. That was oftentimes, a little bit of a precursor to when I would develop a headache. I think that there's probably multiple things. Dehydration is a common reason for developing a headache. And hypoglycemia is a common reason for why people can develop headaches. So, I think there probably needs to be some experimentation there. Maybe she should not be fasting as long and see if that improves, because she mentions farther down that she wasn't getting as many headaches prior to intermittent fasting.

Melanie Avalon: She's having to reach for the painkillers a lot, even things like that, there's a lot of potential here to get out of a spiral that's not quite working for you. Because even with the painkillers, there's something causing the headaches. Taking the painkillers, it doesn't really address the root cause. If we find the root cause, hopefully, you could be taking less and less of those. And even painkillers themselves can have a pretty not so good effect on the gut causing intestinal permeability and things like that. And gut health is so connected to everything. So, I definitely think there's a solution and I'm hoping that you can find that. It's interesting, the fact that the food makes it go away. To me, it does say that it might involve either blood sugar issues or electrolyte issues. So, hopefully, something works, Florence and you can report back and let us know. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, definitely do.

Melanie Avalon: All righty. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you'd 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. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike. The show notes for today's episode, which will be very helpful, because we talked about a lot of things. So, there will be links and a full transcript. That’ll be at ifpodcast.com/episode277. And then you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ ifpodcast, I am @melanieavalon, Cynthia is @cynthia_thurlow_ and I believe that is all the things.

Cynthia Thurlow: Awesome. Well, another fabulous podcast. Keep all those questions coming.

Melanie Avalon: I know I'm really, really enjoying them. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful and I will talk to you next week. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Sounds great. 

Melanie Avalon: Bye. 

Thank you so much for listening to the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember, everything we discussed on this show does not constitute medical advice and no patient-doctor relationship is formed. 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, and original theme composed by Leland Cox and recomposed by Steve Saunders. See you next week. 

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STUFF WE LIKE

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

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Jun 12

Episode 269: Heavy Meals, H. Pylori, Digestive Enzymes, HCL, Modified Keto, OMAD, Lowering Fat, Measuring The Fast, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 269 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 Cynthia Thurlow, author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging.

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

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get Free BACON For LIFE Plus $10!!

4:10 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At melanieavalon.com/beautycounter or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow And Use The Code CLEANFORALL20 For 20% Off PLUS Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: Melanieavalon.Com/Beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Get On The Email List To Stay Up To Date With All The Special Offers And News About Melanie's New Supplements At avalonx.us/emaillist, And Use The Code Melanieavalon For 10% On Any Order At Avalonx.Us And MDlogichealth.Com!

28:05 - BEAUTY AND THE BROTH: Go To melanieavalon.com/broth To Get 15% Off Any Order With The Code MelanieAvalon!

31:55 - Listener Q&A: alexa - IF foods

48:20 - Listener Q&A: Leah - Coffee Differences

Square Feet Specialty Coffee

52:25 - JOOVV: For A Limited Time Go To Joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

55:20 - Listener Q&A: Trina - Keto AND OMAD question

Summary of Women, Food, And Hormones: A 4-Week Plan to Achieve Hormonal Balance, Lose Weight, and Feel Like Yourself Again (Sara Gottfried, M.D.)

MenuPause: Five Unique Eating Plans to Break Through Your Weight Loss Plateau and Improve Mood, Sleep, and Hot Flashes (Anna Cabeca, DO)

#157 – AMA #22: Losing fat and gaining fat: the lessons of fat flux

Our content does not constitute an attempt to practice medicine, and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please consult a qualified health care provider for medical advice and answers to personal health questions.

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 269 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, biohacker and 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, Cynthia Thurlow, Nurse Practitioner and author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and cynthiathurlow.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this podcast do not constitute medical advice or treatment. And no doctor-patient relationship is formed. So, pour yourself a mug of black coffee, a cup of tea, or even a glass of wine if it's that time and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

Hi, friends. I'm about to tell you how you can get sugar free, nitrate free, heritage breed bacon for life, plus $10 off. Yes, free bacon for life, plus $10 off. We are so honored to be sponsored by ButcherBox. They make it so, so easy to get high-quality humanely raised meat that you can trust. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free range organic chicken, heritage breed pork, that's really hard to find by the way, and wild caught sustainable and responsible seafood shipped directly to your door. When you become a member, you're joining a community focused on doing what's better for everyone. That includes caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect and enjoying deliciously better meals together. There is a lot of confusion out there when it comes to transparency regarding grazing practices, what is actually in our food, how animals are being treated. I did so much research on ButcherBox. You can actually check out my blog post all about it at melanieavalon.com/butcherbox. But I am so grateful for all of the information that I learned about their company. All of their beef is 100% grass fed and grass finished that's really hard to find. They work personally with all the farmers to truly support the regenerative agriculture system. I also did an interview with Robb Wolf on my show, The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, all about the massive importance of supporting regenerative agriculture for the sustainability of not only ourselves, but the planet. This is so important to me. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. 

If you recently saw a documentary on Netflix called Seaspiracy, you might be a little bit nervous about eating seafood. Now, I understand why ButcherBox makes it so, so clear and important about how they work with the seafood industry. Everything is checked for transparency, for quality, and for sustainable raising practices. You want their seafood, the value is incredible, the average cost is actually less than $6 per meal, and it's so easy. Everything ships directly to your door. I am a huge steak lover. Every time I go to a restaurant, I usually order the steak. Oh, my goodness, the ButcherBox steaks are amazing. I remember the first time I had one and I just thought, “This is honestly one of the best steaks I've ever had in my entire life.” On top of that, did you know that the fatty acid profile of grass-fed, grass-finished steaks is much healthier for you than conventional steaks. And their bacon, for example is from pastured pork, and sugar and nitrate free. How hard is that to find? I'm super excited, because ButcherBox’ bacon for life is back and it's even better, because you get $10 off as well. Yep, right now, new members will get one pack of free bacon in every box for the life of your membership, plus $10 off when you sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. That's one pack of free bacon in every box for the rest of your life, plus $10 off. Just go to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. 

And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? When it comes to weight loss, we focus a lot on what and when we eat. It makes sense, because these foods affect our hormones and how our bodies store and burn fat. But do you know what is possibly, one of the most influential factors in weight gain? It's not your food and it's not fasting, it's actually our skincare and makeup. As it turns out, Europe has banned over a thousand compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup in the US due to their toxicity. These include endocrine disrupters, which mess with your hormones, carcinogens linked to cancer, and obesogens, which literally can cause your body to store and gain weight. Basically, when we're using conventional skincare and makeup, we are giving these obesogenic compounds direct access to our bloodstream. And then in our bodies, studies have shown they do things like reduce our satiety hormones, increase our hunger hormones, make fat cells more likely to store fat, and more resistant to burning fat, and so much more. If you have stubborn fat, friends, your skincare and makeup maybe playing a role in that. Beyond weight gain and weight loss, these compounds have very detrimental effects on our health and they affect the health of our future generations. That's because ladies, when we have babies, a huge percent of those toxic compounds go through the placenta into the newborn. It is so, so shocking and the effects last for years 

Conventional lipstick, for example, often tests high in lead and the half-life of lead is up to 30 years. That means when you put on some conventional lipstick, 30 years later, maybe half of that lead has left your bones. On top of that, there is essentially no regulation of these products on the shelves. That's why it's up to us to choose brands that are changing this. The brand that is working the hardest to do this is Beautycounter. They were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, so, you can truly feel good about what you put on. And friends, these products really, really work. They are incredible. They have counter time for anti-aging, counter match for normal skin, counter control for acne and oily prone, and counter start for sensitive. I use their Overnight Resurfacing Peel and vitamin C serum every single night of my life and their makeup is amazing. Check on my Instagram to see what it looks like. Tina Fey, even wore all Beautycounter makeup when she hosted The Golden Globes. So, yes, it is high-definition camera ready. They have so many other products. Deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, products for babies, and so much more. You can shop with us at beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. Also, make sure to get on my clean beauty email list, that's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. I give away a lot of free things on that list. So, definitely check it out. And you can join me in my Facebook group, Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare with Melanie Avalon. People share their experiences, ask questions, give product reviews, and I do a giveaway every single week in that group as well. 

And lastly, if you're thinking of making Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare, a part of your future like we have, we definitely recommend becoming a Band of Beauty member. It's sort of 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. It is totally, completely worth it. So, again, to shop with us, go to beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is Episode number 269 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Cynthia Thurlow. How are you today, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I'm doing well other than two surly teenage boys.

Melanie Avalon: When did they get out for school?

Cynthia Thurlow: Officially on June 2nd. We've already had the award ceremonies, and I'm happy to report they had high academic honors, which was awesome. But they are teen boys and they did not permit any photos to be taken of them. And so, all the friends of mine that have daughters, there were pictures of the family, and their awards, and my kids, no, not so much. I took pictures from far away and I just decided I was like, “There are battles worth fighting and this is not one I choose to fight.” But yeah, they will officially be out on June 2nd and I'm pretty excited. This is really their first full year of school in two years, to be physically in school, the entire school year. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow. That's crazy. 

Cynthia Thurlow: No, the pandemic has definitely-- It's not just my kids, it's every child, every family has been impacted by the pandemic. For me, I'm just so grateful that they were in school for an entire year. Things that you take for granted that we never imagined we would have two years of or a solid year of being at home and being in school, and then partial back to school last year. So, I'm just grateful they got to be in school with their peers, part of the year unmasked, then they've been doing really well, despite all the stress and the drama of the last two years. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm getting flashbacks now. There's something so glorious and wonderful when you are growing up and summer vacation. It is just so exciting. [chuckles] 

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, it's done and to be honest with you as a parent, I always really, really looked forward to mid-May, because all of a sudden, the sports were over, [unintelligible [00:09:40] education was over, it was like the carpool nonsense that all parents go through just stops. And so, they would just go to school, and they would come home, and it was just a lot more togetherness, and they're probably getting more sleep, and my husband and I are obviously spending less time driving back and forth between multiple sports. It gives you a prelude to what the summer is going to be like. For me, I'm very much the kind of mom where I let my kids sleep in. They have chores, but I like them to actually decompress. I'm not super strict as long as they get their work done. I know that may be a departure from some families that are listening, but I've just come to understand like, “My kids do really well in school and they're good kids.” I let them do a lot of decompression activities during the summer. 

When they were younger and they had to be in a structured activity, because they had so much energy, and they needed an outlet. Now, it's more thinking about what college does my oldest one to apply to. He's leading into STEM curriculum. Looking at AP classes and it's so different. You really develop a very different relationship with your kids as they're getting older and so, it's also to me picking my battles, So, it's less about keeping them under my thumb, and forcing them to do so many hours of reading every day, and now, it's a different playing field.

Melanie Avalon: That's very much the way I was raised as well. My parents were like that. Of course, I was very on top of things. I remember for summer reading, I would read the books a minimum of two times, sometimes more, which looking back, I'm like, “Why did I do that? Why did I read The Hobbit twice after already having read it” in the past as well?

Cynthia Thurlow: That doesn't surprise me that you would be a willing overachiever. Not someone who's doing it for any other reason than to thoroughly be invested, and really understand, and comprehend what you're reading. I love that we both share that although, we would not have been in school at the same time together. I do love that we are both very cerebral and enjoy-- Just enjoyed learning. What a blessing that is, right?

Melanie Avalon: Speaking of, Gin and I used to always talk about, “Would we be friends in high school and will we be at the same lunch table?” We decided that we might be, but probably not, probably slightly different lunch tables. Which lunch table were you at in high school?

Cynthia Thurlow: It's ironic that in high school and in college, I was part of a very popular crew. However, in my popular career, there was the subcategories of popular girls and I was part of the smart girls that got good grades, and weren't promiscuous, and had boyfriends, but we were nice to people. To me, at that stage, it was actually cool to be smart, whereas the people who were the creme de la creme popular people didn't care about school. I just stayed focused on like, “I want to go to college, and I want to do this, and I want to do that, and I know I'm not going to stay in this school.” But I was always nice to everyone. I was also vice president of my class and captain of back in the day I played field hockey. To me, it was important to just be kind and nice to people. Yeah, my kids cannot believe that I was popular. They're like, “You're so dorky and nerdy,” and I'm like, “Oh, but it's all in the down low. No one knows that unless they know me well." How about you? I would imagine you were like top in your class and super, super, super smart.

Melanie Avalon: There's the honors English class and it was basically the really intellectual “smart kids.” But it was similar. It had some popular people from the popular crowd in it. It was just like the nice, smart people. That was my main group. Yeah, I really excelled academically. You probably would have been at my school in the honors English group class. But you would have been in the popular like the popular people who are in the honors class.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. It's funny because I had this not so nice high school boyfriend. When I look back and he used to call it the nerd herd. He would make fun of the fact that I was in AP classes and honors classes, and I was like, “Who ended up doing better?” Looking at where he is and where I am, and let me be clear, I'm friends with his wife, and his mom, and his sister. I have a very nice relationship with all them. But I look back that he would like tease me and I was like, “There's nothing to be ashamed of for being smart. Smart people run the world.” That's my feeling. It's good to be smart.

Melanie Avalon: I love it. By the way you interviewed Robb Wolf again, right?

Cynthia Thurlow: I did. He's so wonder-- It’s such an easy interview because he's just so gracious and humble. With my cardiology background, we’ve talked a lot about electrolytes and we did talk about overtraining, because I know and I'm very aligned with his perspectives on the overtraining goes along with the over restriction of food, goes along with over fasting, goes along with plateaus. We did touch on that which was really important to me, because I wanted him to also know, there are clearly people that go overboard with all of the above, but it was a really nice conversation. It was nice for someone else to talk about the value of electrolytes and not just me saying, “Oh, by the way, I worked for 16 years in cardiology and I got really, really good at replacing electrolytes.” I got really good at replacing electrolytes and no one really wants to hear about that because it seemingly seems so insignificant, but yet, it's so important. I was actually saying, “Robb, I had surgery almost a month ago” and I knew that my body was going to take a hit, because of this orthopedic surgery, and I was telling him, I said “My HRV, my heart rate variability has really been in the toilet.” [laughs] Clearly, as well as I'm sleeping, my body still perceives, there's all this ongoing stress and my cortisol levels must still be dysregulated. I said, “I just kept adding more sodium and they kept coming down.” I said, “It's just so amazing, something so simple.” It can be so helpful. So, yes, Robb was amazing. Then the other guests that I had most recently that really just-- I'm still in such awe of my conversation with Sara Gottfried, which I know you interviewed her recently as well and she's just so-- [crosstalk] 

Melanie Avalon: We pushed it. So, it's in a few weeks. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Oh, sorry. Well, mine just dropped. When I was listening to it, I feel so very grateful as I know you do that we have platforms in which we can connect with such profoundly influential individuals in the space and be able to share all of their wisdom with the world.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I am so, so excited to interview her. It's really exciting. 

Cynthia Thurlow: She's so smart. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, this upcoming week for me is actually unique. I'm only going on a podcast. I don't actually have an interview, but I'm scrambling. Every now and then, I have a little panic moment where like, “How am I going to prep everything?” But [chuckles] then I take a moment and I breathe. I'm really excited about the lineup. Oh, that's the next person I'm interviewing, Mark Sisson.

Cynthia Thurlow: No way. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm so excited. [chuckles] 

Cynthia Thurlow: Did you sacrifice your firstborn child? 

Melanie Avalon: Basically. [chuckles] 

Cynthia Thurlow: I say that very lovingly. The facetious future born child, I'm like, “That's awesome.”

Melanie Avalon: That's going to be a really, really surreal moment, because it's surreal anyways with all the people that I get to interview, but really there's a handful of people that are the people I've been following from day one. It's basically Robb, Mark Sisson, Dave Asprey, probably those three. Yeah, and I haven't interviewed Mark. 

Cynthia Thurlow: That's so cool. Did I tell you that a couple years ago, I literally ran into him because I wasn't looking where I was walking.

Melanie Avalon: No way. 

Cynthia Thurlow: And he could not have been more polite. I remember, I was so like, “Oh, my God, I just ran into Mark Sisson” and he was so polite.

Melanie Avalon: I got connected to him through Brad Kearns, who I'm pretty good friends with who's coauthor. And so, I've been talking with Brad about what direction to take the interview, because there're so many ways you could go, but I think I might focus more on him. His personal life, because he's done so many businesses, and I would just love to hear all about that rather than focusing on the primal stuff as much.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think that's so exciting. I'm so excited for you. It's interesting because a lot of these people when you've been following them for a long period of time, that's how I felt about Sara Gottfried in addition to the other people you mentioned. When I was talking to her, I was trying not to fan girl. I was really nervous. I told my husband, I was sweating, I tried to be as cool as I could be, [laughs] but to actually meet some of these people that we've been following for years, and valuing the message and methodology of their brands and their vision and to me its-- I tell everyone all the time like one of my greatest blessings in my business is being able to podcast because as you've said it's the best way to network. You just don't even realize how important it is until you get in a position where you either meet someone in real life and you're like, “Oh, my gosh.” I mean, you really do become friends and acquaintances with so many of these people. We're all trying to positively impact lives in a way that leaves people better off and to me, it's so amazing. So, I love that you-- That was probably a year or two ago, you're like, “Podcasting is the best way to network” and I was like, “Oh, my God, that's exactly what it is.”

Melanie Avalon: Because it's basically conversations that aren't superficial, because they're deep conversations where you're talking about their work, and you're really connecting, and then you're just doing that regularly, and it's all the amazing people. So, I'm just so grateful. I'm really in awe.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, and for anyone who doesn't know this about you, I do know this about you. I probably spend five to 10 hours per each podcast, just organizing, listening to other podcasts, trying to get a sense for what the person's like. Melanie is next level, because she is graciously on a few times shared her notes and they are so detailed. For anyone that's listening, you have no idea. When Melanie says she's preparing, she's preparing to go do a doctoral dissertation. She's so well prepared. If you don't know that about her, you should know that about her. So, as I say, you always encourage me to level up how I prepare and how I get ready for my own podcasts.

Melanie Avalon: Well, thank you so much. I echo that back to you as well, because I feel there are a lot of podcasts out there. and there are a lot of people who don't prepare, and do just show up, and I get the exact same sense from you with the preparation. So, yeah, it's a good place to be. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. I can tell you now that I've been on the other side having had a book launch, the people that were prepared, I really appreciated that because you get to a point where you're just doing so much press that you're exhausted. I remember, there were weeks where I was doing 12 to 15 podcasts a week on top of other media and you were like, “Where do I need to show up and what am I talking about?” You were just showing up, and being yourself, and being enthusiastic, and I would have people, they're like, “Yeah, I haven't really read your book and just tell me what you want to talk about?” I was like, “What?” [laughs] I was like, “Not even a skim, not even read the appendix or read the table of contents anything.” When there's no judgement, sometimes, I was like, “Oh, man, this is going to be harder than I thought.”

Melanie Avalon: When people ask me basically to provide all the questions for the interview. I still do it and I'm so grateful, but I appreciate it much more, like you said, when it's really evident that they've read the book, and they come with the questions, and everything.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, and it's interesting, because I interviewed Dr. Avrum Bluming and Carol Tavris about their book, Estrogen Matters. It was funny. After we recorded, they both said to me, “Cynthia, your assistant reached out to us and asked us to tell you what we wanted to talk about.” They were taken aback and they said, “But now that we've met you, we understand that you really just wanted to make sure that you are aware of what we thought was most important.” But by the same token, you did so much prep work like that podcast, I probably spent more time on than anyone I've done this entire year, because I felt the Women's Health Initiative as an example, had led so many clinicians and patients to be fearful of hormone replacement therapy and I was like, “I know, I've got this platform.” So, I think in most instances, I really endeavor to think about how do I ensure that person knows I value their time, but also let them know like, “I'm in the game, and I'm super prepped, and I've read all your stuff, and I've outlined, and I've listened to podcasts to just to get a sense.”

I just interviewed the head researcher for HVMN and he was so delightful. He was like a Rick Johnson-esque person. So enthusiastic, so excited. He was able to translate the science into layman's terminology and that was such a joy, and I was like, “Wow.” I was so surprised. I instantly liked him and I thought to myself, “This is what's so awesome to be in this space.” We can actually have these opportunities to take real research and make it relatable for the average person, because that's really the platform that I think we're both on, although obviously you're on a biohacking platform and I'm on a 35 and up trying to translate how to navigate our lives without too much stress and distress.

Melanie Avalon: Two thoughts to that. One, so, the way I tackle getting the vibe of what they want to talk about while also having them know that I value their time, I just in the intake form, all of the questions are optional and there's just one question that says, “Are there any topics in particular you'd like to talk about?” Rather than asking like, “What questions you want me to answer?” It's just very open, I feel that accomplishes that goal, at least for me.

Cynthia Thurlow: I may have to borrow that. Of course, with credit given to you.

Melanie Avalon: No, I don’t need. No credit needed. I probably took it from somebody else. The second thought was, I was listening as per usual last night to a Peter Attia episode and they were talking about, it was one of the Q&As and the cohost was saying, how he always will reach out. When he read studies, if he has questions, he'll literally just email the researchers on the studies. The majority of the time they always answer and usually are really excited to talk about the studies. So, I was like, “I should start doing that.”

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. Well, you know what's interesting is, so, Dr. Bluming, who I just bow at his feet, his book is so amazing, and he sends me updates. He just did an editorial for a journal and sent me the update and I was like, “Thank you so much. I can't wait to read it.” I meant it genuinely, because he's helping to change the narrative, and the discussions around, and the fears around prescribing and taking hormones. I was like, “He's doing amazing, amazing things.” Yeah, they love to talk about that stuff.

Melanie Avalon: And for listeners, this is Cynthia's Everyday Wellness Podcast.

Cynthia Thurlow: That podcast dropped in February and as you know, I'm a big nerd. I like to look at my metrics. Number one for the year thus far is Megan Ramos and then, Rick Johnson. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm interviewing her in a few months. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, there's no comparison. Her downloads are way more than anyone else's. And also who else is in there? Dr. Bluming is in there. So, clearly, these are concepts and methodologies that are really relating to people, which I think is great. Yeah, but Rick Johnson's amazing,

Melanie Avalon: I should look at my stats and see which ones were the biggest.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I trend it. I don't know if it makes me, like, it just allows me to see who do I want to bring back, what really resonates, what was a do-do? I think sometimes, you do a great interview, and it just doesn't resonate with your listeners, and you're like, “Gosh, that was surprising.” And then sometimes something that you-- [crosstalk] 

Melanie Avalon: Or, the reverse. Yeah.

Cynthia Thurlow: Correct? [laughs] That happens, the unicorns are like, “Where did that come from?”

Melanie Avalon: For me, I have genuinely, because people will ask me, I think actually, you've asked me before like, “Has there ever been an episode that I didn't want to air or didn't really like?” I can genuinely say, I have really loved every single interview that I've done. But sometimes, I do an interview and I love it, but I just don't know if the topic or the content will really resonate. Yeah, sometimes, I'm really surprised that they freak out and [chuckles] love it.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I've only had three and almost four years of podcasting that I had to toss in the toilet, which is always disappointing. But I was like, “Sometimes, you just don't get a good interview.” You could have someone that's super smart and they're just not easy to interview or they go off on a tangent that is so not aligned with your own methodology that you're like, “I can't release this, because it would be a problem.” But yeah, I think that's how you just navigate knowing what your audience really wants to hear and resonate with.

Melanie Avalon: Definitely. Well, before we jump in, I have one really quick baby teaser and this is going to be such a vague teaser. But for listeners, I am so excited because in creating supplements now, there are a few supplements that I really want to create, but I don't know if I can, or it might be tricky, or things with like FDA regulations and such. So, this is just a baby teaser that I found out yesterday or the day before that one of the main supplements I want to make that I thought we couldn't, we probably are going to be able to, because we might have an FDA approved version. So, I get really excited. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Now, I can’t wait to hear more. 

Melanie Avalon: For listeners, if you'd like to know what that is, definitely get on my supplement email list because that's where I will be announcing the news. Also, I keep getting questions literally every day about when am I going to be releasing my magnesium supplement. The email list for all the information is avalonx.us/emaillist.

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Melanie Avalon: Shall we jump into everything for today?

Cynthia Thurlow: Let's jump in.

Melanie Avalon: To start things off, we have a question from Alexa and the subject is: “IF foods.” Alexa says, “Hello, ladies. I'm on my second week of IF clean and I'm loving it. I tried IF last year, but was not doing it correctly as I was still putting creamer in my coffee. I recently found your podcast and I'm hooked. My question is regarding the type of foods I'm consuming after I break my fast, which I've decided to begin with a 16:8. I find that sometimes, I get hungry early between 9:30 to 10 AM, then it goes away. I noticed once I get past noon, sometimes, I can push through to about 1:00 to 1:30 PM usually, because I'm busy working. But I seem to gravitate towards a heavy lunch. For example, a tuna melt, bag of chips and water, or sometimes, I'll have Mexican tacos that are super delicious. Typically, carne asada or other type of meat. I am just wondering if I should be careful about breaking my fast was such heavy food. Also, sometimes, I don't get too hungry for dinner, so I'll have a light dinner. Do you have suggestions on how to eat correctly when IFing. I forgot to mention that I also work out three to four times a week. Thank you and sorry for all the rambling.”

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, Alexa, I think first and foremost, just the fact that you're asking if you need to break your fast with a lighter meal demonstrates to me that you're already thinking that might be a problem. I typically recommend that you break your fast like maybe start with some bone broth as a light alternative or a light salad, and then perhaps, have a less complicated meal like maybe you're having some chicken, or some steak, or you're going to have a bison burger, or you're having a piece of fish with some vegetables like non-starchy vegetables, because it could very well be that between the mayonnaise, and the cheese, and I don't know if you're making the Mexican tacos or buying them out, you can be exposed to seed oils. It might just be overwhelming your digestive processes. So, that's my first thought is break your fast with something lighter and less fat dense that might be part of it. 

The other thing is, depending on where you are in your cycle, so, I don't know if you're still menstruating. I am an advocate of women. You can get away with intermittent fasting for usually the first three weeks of your cycle. But if you're within a week of getting your menstrual cycle or bleed week, then I typically recommend you back off. The fact that you are feeling like you're having such a heavy meal and then you're not really hungry for your second meal makes me concerned that you may not be hitting your protein macros. For anyone who is new to listening to me on the podcast, I'm all about protein, protein, protein. We really need it for so many reasons. One of them is satiety and other one is to have adequate muscle protein synthesis. Hitting those protein macros is going to be really important. So, I would probably recommend you start with a lighter meal when you break your fast, so that it'll allow you to get in enough protein between your two regular meals during your fasting window.

Melanie Avalon: That reminded me of the interview that I did have in the interim since we talked which was Dr. Gabrielle Lyon, who is as well all about the protein, and really, really knows the science of it, and why it's so important. I really can't wait to air that. I agree with everything that you said. I like what you said about the fact that she's asking means that she might be intuitively on to something. I do think that this is something pretty intuitive because we are really, really unique everybody, individually. Some people can handle having a big bolus of food and be fine, and some people are delicate butterflies, and need to really take a more measured approach like Cynthia said with maybe breaking with bone broth, or something more gentle. I found for me, I break my fast, I post about this all the time on Instagram so people know, with cucumbers and wine, but then I move into a really heavy meal, actually. But I do slowly ease into it. I will say, if you are eating heavier--

I don't know if we need to define what heavy mean, because on the one hand, you could have a meal like I eat, where it's a huge amount of protein, which would seem like a “heavy meal.” But it's not necessarily heavy in the sense that it's a lot of mixed macros, and fat, and processed foods and that type of heavy. I think heavy can mean different things. Mine's just heavy in a mechanical sense and that protein requires a lot of energy to break down. There's a reason it has the highest thermogenic effect of any food. You “burn” about 30% of the calories and protein just by breaking it down because it does require a lot of digestion and energy to do that. All that to say if you do want to eat “heavier meals” and find that you're not digesting it well, you might want to consider HCI supplementation and/or digestive enzymes. That might be something that can really help. I've always been really fascinated in the ordering of it, because the natural digestion process would happen in a certain order. So, basically, we release stomach acid first, HCl and then later as the food moves into the intestines that's where enzymes process that. I've always been a little bit haunted about just there needs to be a certain order to it. I've asked a lot of guests this and I get different answers. But the way I do things is I use HCI first in my meal and then I add digestive enzymes afterwards. So, that might be something to consider. I don't necessarily think there's a correct way, but we are really individual and it's good to be intuitive.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, this is just my little clinician caveat that in the past two years, I have not done one GI-MAP, maybe one or two out of hundreds of women that hasn't had H. pylori. I tend to be a little more conservative with recommending betaine or HCl, because if someone has an active or unknown H. pylori infection, that can actually exacerbate symptoms. I would say that under normal circumstances, I think digestive supports are great. But I think of in the hierarchy, digestive enzymes are pretty benign, but I tend to be a little bit more conservative about HCI just in case someone has H. pylori, which, if you're not familiar what that is, it's opportunistic organism that sometimes in the setting of low hydrochloric acid can flourish. And so, I'm just seeing so much of it now on GI-MAPS, which is a DNA based stool test that I'm tending to be really conservative with HCl until I have testing. So, I agree with everything that you're saying. 

However, that how we define a heavy meal might be different to each one of us, but I define a heavy meal is something that's going to be harder on our body to digest. If you're not making the tuna melt, you don't know what the ingredients are, if you're not making those Mexican tacos, you don't know what seed oils are being used and so, that could be contributing to why it's feeling like you're having a little bit of a digestive backup or just feeling very full. The other thing is if you're sleepy after a meal that could be a sign that not only is it too large of a meal, but you might have eaten enough carbohydrate that you're getting some degree of blood sugar dysregulation. If that persists, you may want to check your blood sugar. I think that's certainly really reasonable. Glucometers are very inexpensive, but your blood sugar should come back to baseline within two hours of eating ideally, just a thought.

Melanie Avalon: Question about the H. pylori. So, it flourishes in low HCI environment or high HCI environment?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, low. Because it's like anything. We start producing less hydrochloric acid as we get older. It's much more common to see HCI flourishing, because it's the first line of defense. Hydrochloric acid is designed to kill things. If you have inadequate levels and certainly it gets depleted, you can get HCI depletion just from not having enough precursors like certain types of zinc. I remind people that until proven otherwise, until I know someone definitely doesn't have H. pylori, and this is just my own clinical environment. My sometimes will hold off on doing HCl, but there's certainly other things you can do to help support digestion. As you mentioned, digestive enzymes are great. I'm just seeing so much H. pylori now, I think it has a lot to do with the impact of stress on the gut microbiome. That's been my working hypothesis that the doctors at the GI-MAP lab agree with, because I've never seen so much H. pylori, never.

Melanie Avalon: Wouldn't taking HCI benefit that then?

Cynthia Thurlow: You have to kill the infection. You remove what doesn't belong and think about it this way. If you are getting H. pylori and you're taking a stool sample, it's gotten from the stomach through the entire digestive system, small intestine, large intestine, into the rectum and expelled. Whatever amount you're seeing quantified on DNA based technology is actually higher. We eradicate first and then we go to supplementation with HCl. But it's usually created in a low hydrochloric acid environment and that's oftentimes related to age-related changes or people don't have the cofactors to be able to create enough hydrochloric acid. That's where I go from, and that's what I was taught, and it's definitely been my clinical experience to see that that you want to make sure that you're not addressing HCI issues if someone has H. pylori.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, I'm still not following. If the problem with H. pylori is low HCl because of the ulcers.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, there's many different types of H. pylori, and so some are prone to precancerous lesions, they can lead to certain types of duodenal ulcers, etc. When you do the testing, especially the type of testing I mentioned, it'll help you differentiate if they have any of the pathologic cofactors that go along with it. But here's the thing. If HCl is at a proper level, you should not have an issue with H. pylori. It's in the setting of a low hypochlorhydria. In that setting that is when you can make this opportunistic opportunity for things not to get killed off, that could be a parasite that you ingest. And yes, it is as horrifying as it is to think. We ingest a lot of things and we are dependent on this first line of defense in our stomach to have enough hydrochloric acid to kill things off. But what I see in most women that I work with is that they do not have optimal levels of hydrochloric acid and therefore, it bypasses this first line of defense. We should not have H. pylori in our stomach. Certainly, not at detectable levels. With DNA based stool testing, you are seeing signs of a mechanism that could be also a reflection of the impact of stress on the gut microbiome, because we know that impacts immune function as well.

Melanie Avalon: So, the reason not to take the HCl is, so that you can test and see if you have H. pylori. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, that's one of the reasons. But that’s also, sometimes, people will start H. pylori and they all of a sudden get reflux, or they're burping a lot, or they're nauseous, or they're bloated and so.

Melanie Avalon: They start HCl or they start--?

Cynthia Thurlow: It can exacerbate their symptoms from H. pylori. Sometimes, it can be very subtle. They might just have bloating and they just assume bloating is normal like, “Oh, I had dairy and I'm bloated” or “Oh, I had some gluten and that's why I'm bloated.” But it could in fact be related to imbalance in the gut microbiome. There's a lot to unpack here, but certainly H. pylori is an opportunistic infection and more often than not it is attributable to a low HCI environment in the stomach.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. [chuckles] I'm just not understanding if it's attributable to low HCl, what is the reason for not taking HCI?

Cynthia Thurlow: Because you have to kill the infection, you remove what does not belong before you start adding digestive support like that. This is a clinical thing like this is a best practice thing. This is something that I learned in school and has been the case I don't start hydrochloric acid, unless I'm sure someone has cleared H. pylori. You think about digestion from a north to south process, what's in the stomach, you have to address what's there before you address Candida, or a parasite, or dysbiosis, or any other worms, which occasionally come up on diagnostic testing. You start north to south and so, you have to eradicate what does not belong in the stomach before you start addressing things that are going on lower in the digestive system.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, okay. So, I just really want to understand what you're saying. To resay what you just said, you need to address these infections before you work on digestive support as a solution.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, you want to. Before you prescribe or recommend HCl, you want to make sure they don't have H. pylori. That's where it stems from. If they don't have H. pylori, you could absolutely start hydrochloric acid. More often than not, people will see improvement in protein and amino acid breakdown. For many people that can be a simple fix to why they struggle with a protein bolus. But I always like to be thinking as a clinician and that's one of those things I always say, more often than not hydrochloric acid is pretty benign. However, here's my caveat in my clinical experience. “You want to be careful about dosing it if you haven't already ruled out H. pylori.” There's just so much of it. I have seen more in the past two years than I've seen the last 10 years. That's how much I've seen.

Melanie Avalon: Is that an easy test? Can people ask their practitioner for that test or would it be a GI doc that normally does that? I know you're not a GI.

Cynthia Thurlow: I would say it's someone that's functionally or integrative medicine trained. For me, before I started working with the DUTCH, I think the GI-MAP is one of the best tests I've worked with, because it's a starting point. It's been my experience that most primary care providers, internists, and most traditionally trained gastroenterologists are not using it. Because it's not part of that allopathic medical model. It doesn't mean that it's not valuable, but for a lot of people they do pay out of pocket. That can be something that's limiting. I've had people come to me who've been to their traditional, they've done the GI workup, they've had breath testing for H. pylori, and I tell everyone, the gold standard is stool. The best way to rule out H. pylori as disgusting as it is because think about it. H. pylori is in the stomach. If you get a positive test with stool that means it made it all the way.

Melanie Avalon: So, it won't find the dead DNA?

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, you're shutting it. It's really going in with testing. I can send you some of the information, so you can learn more about the testing. But it's been one of those things that that amount of shutting, if you get it all the way into your stool is pretty significant. I always say to people like, “Yeah, the numbers not all that high, however.” [laughs] We weren't going into your stomach and taking the sample there. Breath testing is not as reliable. If anyone's listening and they've had that testing, I oftentimes will say, “Gold standard is stool.” It's not impossible to get it done. You just have to advocate. For a lot of people that are experiencing reflux, and heartburn, and burping, and belching, they're put on proton pump inhibitors, which in and of themselves have a lot of long-term health complications. I say this with respect, because we put everyone in the hospital on Protonix, which is a PPI. But the more I learned about how important stomach acid is, we're actually making it worse by putting people on these drugs long term.

Melanie Avalon: I cannot agree more. I've had that stool test and I've had-- Do they test for H. pylori when they do endoscopies? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, they can do little samples and send them off. And obviously, that's up close and personal. Think about it in the hierarchy of costs, it's much more cost effective to do a stool test versus an invasive procedure. But sometimes, you need the invasive procedure. If they're in there, they can do a biopsy or testing.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Awesome. All right, shall we go on to our next question? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Sure. This is from Leah. Subject is: “Coffee differences.” “Hello, I wrote before with a question, but now, I have another one. I'm listening to an episode, where a listener asked about teeth whitening strips and it made me think of the time, Gin said, she had black coffee from McDonald's and it made her shaky. Now, I stopped getting flavored roast and only finished off my current stock of flavored roast during my window once I started fasting. My question is that besides the flavored roast, by flavored, things like hazelnut, toffee, winter mint, etc., how would we who are still relatively new to IF know if black coffee effects are fast in a bad way like McDonald's did for Gin? I buy whole bean coffee from Gobena, a not-for-profit that sends its proceeds to help orphans around the world and partners with adoptive families to help them fundraise and have been getting the Yirgacheffe light roast instead of the flavor roasted beans. I grind them at home and send about half of a five-pound bag overseas to my fiancé, who has also started fasting with me. He already liked his coffee black, so, no trouble there. What could have made that McDonald's coffee different? How could we find out? I want to fast clean, but the sheer relief. I could keep coffee even if I just stopped putting cacao in it during the fast was so nice. You gals will never run out of things to talk about on the podcast. We'll always have questions. Leah.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Leah. Well, thank you so much for your question. I do remember when we were talking about this, and so, I looked up the McDonald's coffee and it is just coffee. There're no additives. I thought this was interesting. They say there's the potential of a dairy allergy. I'm guessing that's cross contamination from they're assuming with the coffee machine that it's possible that dairy could get into it. That's what I'm guessing rather than from the source. I don't know. It could be a few things. One, there's the whole movement of mold free coffee like the Bulletproof coffee with Dave Asprey. Do you drink coffee, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I do not drink coffee. However, in our house, we have Purity and we have a company called Square Feet, and the latter of which is a very small like home-based business, but the man who runs it is very OCD about mycotoxins and tests multiple different ways. So, that's typically what we have in our house and what I generally recommend.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, nice. We will put links in the show notes to these coffees. The show notes by the way will be at ifpodcast.com/episode269. My coffee intake, I literally have a sip every morning. It's very, very small, but I drink Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof coffee because of the mycotoxins and mold issue. I've also used Ben Greenfield’s Kion coffee in the past. But people who react to these mycotoxins and mold, I think it can really be a thing. I think it could create that shaky affected people. So, it could be that. I don't know what else it would be. Do you have thoughts about it, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I think the concern about mycotoxins is a real issue, but I just can't imagine that McDonald's quality would be-- Who knows what else it's cross contaminated with. Could it have been blood sugar dysregulation, could have been a spike in cortisol? Because we know in some people coffee or whether it's the polyphenols, we know that you can get some appreciable cortisol dysregulation, which is going to raise your blood sugar, which is going to raise insulin. The shakiness could have been from a few different things. But certainly, quality is important. And so, it sounds Leah’s makes a very conscientious effort to select a product that sounds it's probably high quality. But I always think mycotoxins until proven otherwise, because coffee beans are readily known to be a mold sensitive or mold prone product, just like peanuts and legumes and things like that. So, that's probably where I would lean first. Yeah, I agree with you.

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Melanie Avalon: Okay. We have a question from Trina and the subject is: “Keto and OMAD,” one-meal-a-day question. Trina says, “I've been using OMAD for just under a week and have been doing okay. No weight loss yet, but I do have hunger pains periodically and some lasts for over an hour. I'm also doing keto while I'm having my one meal a day. Is this too much to do OMAD and keto at once and could this be causing me to feel hungry while I'm fasting? Or, should I stay the course or if I'm not going to lose weight, because I'm being too restrictive by using keto, should I add bread, pasta, etc., here and there? I do think I'd feel fuller at the moment, but I don't want the grains/carbs to spike my insulin. I've been keto since April 1st pretty strict and only up and down a few pounds weight loss, but overall, still the same weight. I did IF for 18:6 for a couple of weeks, no weight loss. Now, trying OMAD has been about a week. I maybe adrenal fatigued. Could this be my body healing instead of losing weight? If so, when oh when, can I hope to see any weight loss? I really do like the OMAD, but I'm getting frustrated. By the way, I eat in the middle of the day currently, but maybe shifting to an evening OMAD might help. I work full time, very busy, and was worried. I'd be dragging if I didn't eat in the middle of the day. But eating with my family would be more enjoyable for all of us.” And then she has a second question, but I thought we could answer this first.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, there's a lot to unpack here. Unfortunately, the toxic diet culture has convinced women in particular that weight loss is the only metric to demonstrate if a new strategy is effective. If you look at the research typically, because women have different body fat to muscle mass composition, as well as hormonal fluctuations. I don't know how old Trina is. I don't know if she's insulin resistant. But depending on where you are life stage wise, it may take six to eight weeks to start seeing significant and when I mean significant, really one to two pounds a week over six, eight weeks, yes, I would expect to see some weight reduction. I think it's important to focus on non-scale victories. Meaning, are you getting changes in body composition, are your clothes fitting a little more loosely, are you having more energy, more mental clarity, etc.? I think there's a couple things to focus on. One meal a day for many people may not allow you to get enough macros in. I know this is something that Melanie and I have talked a lot about outside of the podcast. There's a lot of layers to this question. Obviously, the first one being be patient. I know it's easier said than done, of course. But I think that it's important to understand that you may not see a scale shift immediately and to just trust the course. 

The other thing is, can you get enough protein in one meal a day? That's always my concern with women. If you really just have one meal, are you getting enough food in? You also mentioned being adrenal fatigued and so, there's a lot to look at. When women are fasting, I think it's really, critically important that you focus on what's your sleep quality like. That's foundational. If you can't sleep through the night, your sleep quality is eroded, you need to back off on fasting. Number two, what's your stress management like? That's not three minutes of meditation once a week. Anti-inflammatory nutrition, I think keto can be helpful. However, maybe you need to really be thinking thoughtfully about what's working for your body. Protein, non-starchy vegetables, right types of fats. Then the last thing that I think about is, I don't know if you're exercising. It sounds like you've got a very busy schedule. But we know that insulin resistance starts in our muscles as an example. Some type of physical activity is going to be very important to help with insulin sensitivity. But it's hard for me to completely provide some perspective about the adrenal fatigue. If you're in perimenopause or menopause, more than likely your adrenals need some love and support and that's why the stress management and sleep are so important and the right types of exercise and food. Melanie, what would you add to that?

Melanie Avalon: That was very comprehensive. That was wonderful. The only thing I would add would be, so going back to the keto, I think there's this binary dichotomy that people have viewing keto, where they're either keto or they're eating bread and pasta, where I think it's much more nuanced than that. Adding carbs to keto doesn't have to be bread and pasta. It doesn't have to be this huge whack of high GI, potentially inflammatory carb source. You can add in some carbs while still existing more within a “keto paradigm.” A lot of people on keto do include berries, for example like small amounts of berries. Even upping the vegetable intake could potentially up the carb count. I would not go to bread and pasta to make yourself less stressed or less restrictive. I don't think for most people that that would be the solution. Some other thoughts about existing within the keto paradigm and frame, Cynthia mentioned this, but the role of protein is so important. I don't know if you're doing a super high fat version of keto or not, but adding that more protein and maybe if you are doing super high fat, titrating down the fat, that might be a way to A, feel more full because the protein is going to do that. B, more nourished via the protein and potentially encourage weight loss by titrating down the fat. 

Also, switching out the types of fats might be helpful. Depending on what type of fat you're having in your keto diet, MCT oil, for example, is a very thermogenic fat. If you are adding oils or butter, or things like that switching some of that out for MCT oil might have a beneficial effect on your weight loss. There is the option because you're worried about keto plus fasting being too stressful. There is the option of trying fasting with not keto. That is an option. Trying a higher carb, lower fat approach, for me personally that works really well. Again, we're all individual. When did she start this? Only a couple of weeks. Okay. I wouldn't jump to this right now, because like Cynthia said, it's only been a couple of weeks and I would stick it out a little bit longer. That said, if you make it months, and you're still not happy, and you're not seeing weight loss, some people do find that they do better on a higher carb, lower fat approach with the fasting. So, that is definitely something to try. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, It's interesting. When I talked to Sara Gottfried a few weeks ago, one of the things she was talking about is, women have to use keto differently than men. It's been my experience that men seem to be able to eat copious amounts of both plant-based and animal-based fats. We really have to reflect on the fact that carbs and protein are four calories per gram, even though I don't encourage people to count calories. Let me just put that in there. Whereas fats are nine calories per gram. You don't need as much fat as you think you do. As an example, if you're having a piece of salmon steak or a ribeye, guess what the fats are already in there. You don't need to add more fats. This is where I see a lot of women get into trouble, because dairy, cheese, cheese is delicious and nuts are delicious. And so, people are like, “Yay, I'm doing keto. This is awesome.” Before they know that they've eaten four portions of cheese, and three have nuts, and they've blown, any caloric deficit that might have even been created by intermittent fasting. So, just something to think about that plant-based fats for a lot of people including myself. I tend to do better with those, so less heavy fats, but really leaning into where you life stage wise, are you insulin resistant, and maybe being really mindful about your portion sizes of fats.

Melanie Avalon: Three thoughts to that. I'm glad you mentioned Sara Gottfried because I was going to bring her up in my answer because I was going to say that her, and you, and Dr. Anna Cabeca, all of you guys are really wonderful in talking about the nuances of keto for women specifically and how that might need to be adapted for women. I think that's really valuable. Cynthia's book, Intermittent Fasting Transformation, Dr. Gottfried’s-- What is Dr. Gottfried’s most recent book?

Cynthia Thurlow: Women, Food, and Hormones. 

Melanie Avalon: Wait. Straight to the point. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, Women, Food, and Hormones.

Melanie Avalon: So, if that title doesn't just say it. Dr. Anna-- What's Dr. Anna Cabeca’s most recent book?

Cynthia Thurlow: MenuPause. So, it's like M-E-N-U-pause.

Melanie Avalon: I actually haven't read-- I think that's her only book I haven't read. 

Cynthia Thurlow: It's beautiful. The photos, and the recipes, and she really did a nice very thoughtful, very, very thoughtful job. Yeah, it's a beautiful book. The photography is so pretty. We think about we eat with our eyes. And so, I told her, I was like, “Oh my gosh, the book is so beautiful.” If you do nothing else, it's artwork just to look at.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to have to check it out. That's amazing. Well, we'll put links to all of those books in the show notes. The other thought I had was, again, listening to Peter Attia last night, one of the episodes I was listening to was, he was talking about people not losing weight on keto. He said, the first thing, if that's the case is he suggests titrating down the fat, which is just to echo what we both just said, Oh, yeah. The third thing is, I'm so glad you brought this up, because I think about this a lot. I think because we do live in such-- especially with the keto movement and this idea that has to be super high fat, we just have this feeling that with all of our food, we need to cook it in fat, and add all these oils, and you don't have to. Especially, if you're talking about salmon, salmon has a lot of fat in it. A not lean chicken breast, chicken thighs or chicken breasts with skin, that has fat in it. Steak has fat in it. So, you don't necessarily have to add a ton of fat. I know there are people like, is it Dr. Gundry, who says he pours olive oil by [laughs] a liter?

Cynthia Thurlow: I think about it. He's a dude. I always say like, “That's the one thing we--" Bio-individuality rules, but I don't see a lot of women that can eat copious amounts of fat. The worst thing is when someone says, “Oh, my God, I did keto and it was great until I gained 10 pounds.” It's almost always because they didn't realize how calorically dense fats are. I always say like, “If a little bit is good, too much is not good.” I will fully disclose that my favorite healthy fat, I love macadamia nuts. I have to portion out a quarter cup because they're so easy to overeat. I literally take the bag out, take my measuring cup out-- I don't measure my food otherwise. Take my measuring cup out, put in a bowl, put the bag away, and I'm like, “I'm done.” Because it's like kryptonite, it’s very easy to overeat fats.

Melanie Avalon: Nuts are a gateway food for me. I've said this on the show a lot. I don't know if I've said this to you. But one of the biggest epiphanies I had with all of this was, people will say that on keto, for example, that you can have unlimited fats, because they don't raise insulin. But the reason they don't really raise insulin is because they don't really need insulin to get stored. The ironic thing is, the same concept of fats not releasing insulin and the conclusion you could draw could be one of two things that are complete opposites. The conclusion that most people draw is, “Well, no insulin. So, it's not going to get stored. I can have all the fat I want.” But really no insulin, because it's so easily stored. So, just something to ponder.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's interesting. Ben Azadi always says, “You want to burn endogenous fat before you consume exogenous fat,” which means all of us have plenty of fat just to burn off. We want to burn the fat in our bodies as opposed to ingesting lots of fat. When we're thinking about evolved keto, meaning, as Melanie just said, people say, “Oh, I've no blood sugar spikes on my CGM.” It's understanding because you make it very easy for that extra energy just to get stored as fat. And so, we want to burn the fat inside before eating copious amounts of exogenous or external sources of fats as delicious as they are.

Melanie Avalon: I'll put a link in the show notes to that Peter Attia episode because it was his AMA #22.

Cynthia Thurlow: I love his AMAs. 

Melanie Avalon: Me, too. The title is Losing fat and gaining fat and it was all about the concept of fat flex, and how does fat actually go in and out of cells, and how does keto affect that. So, be very helpful for people. Trina had one last quick question. She said, “Also, do we count our fasting from beginning of eating window to the next beginning of the eating window or do we count it from where we end our eating? I'm getting confused on the whole 22:2 or 23:1, and where the hours are counted from. Thanks for all you do and I appreciate your time.”

Cynthia Thurlow: I always count it from when you stopped eating. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. 

Cynthia Thurlow: It's interesting because I'm running a fasting group right now and there were two or three women that were struggling because they were thinking about it too much. I just said, “Whenever you stop eating is when your fasting window starts and that's the easiest way to think about it. Don't overthink it.”

Melanie Avalon: People get really caught up because when you end your meal, you're fasting but you're not in the fasted state. It can be confusing. If Cynthia said, if you're overthinking it, but don't overthink it. You are fasting and that's what you're counting. So, fasting is when you're not eating. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. I tell people it really takes about 12 hours for your body to get to a point where it's burned off or working through that last meal. It's important to not stress yourself out, because I tell everyone, I'm like, “We're so hard on ourselves, we endeavor to integrate these new strategies to make ourselves healthier.” Then next thing I know people are down a rabbit hole stressing and I'm like, “Listen, no stress. There's no stress.” When you stop eating is the beginning of your fasting window until you eat again.

Melanie Avalon: Here's a question for you that we've often discussed on this show and I'm always curious what people’s thoughts are. If you're doing a time approach where it's a 16:8 or something like that, would you rather count the fasting hours or the eating hours? I can clarify more if you need me to clarify. So, Gin, for example, likes to have a four- or five-hour eating window, whereas I like to have minimum fasting hours. I like to count the fasting hours.

Cynthia Thurlow: I count the fasting hours. I really lean into how I feel in terms of-- Because I have a wider eating window. That's one way I can get in the amount of protein that I need every day. For me, I really reflect on what my minimum fasting hours should be and that's usually what I work from.

Melanie Avalon: Same. It's exactly what I do.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. I'm checking myself like, “When I stop eating last night?” Last night, I went out to dinner with my 16-year-old, so, I ate a little later than I normally do which is okay. Yeah, I usually focus on, “Okay, how do I need to adjust my fasting windows to make sure I'm at least hitting that minimum for me?”

Melanie Avalon: Same. What I don't like is, I don't like the thought of having to close my eating window at a certain time. Once I start eating now, I have this amount of time to eat that I find that very stressful.

Cynthia Thurlow: When do you open up your feeding window, because I know you stay up a little later than I do? 

Melanie Avalon: Like nine. 

Cynthia Thurlow: That's hilarious. For listeners, I know, you know that Melanie stays up a little later and I go to bed a whole lot earlier. But I was thinking one day, I was like, “I wonder what time she starts eating,” because I know what time I start eating and they might be like 12 hours apart. [laughs] 

Melanie Avalon: It's very possible. The only time I eat earlier is if I'm getting dinner out. I've been doing it for so long, too.

Cynthia Thurlow: That's what we're-- This is really leaning into what works for you and your body. If I eat at 9 o'clock at night, my sleep would be a disaster. [laughs] But I also go to bed a lot earlier. So, I think last night I was up late. My Oura was like, “You stayed up till 10:15.”

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I would be so proud of myself if I went to bed at 10:15. I would be so proud of myself if I got up when you get up, too.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, well, it's funny. My Oura was squawking at me last night that it wants me in bed between 8:30 and 9:30 and I'm like, “Oh.” Sometimes, I just don't want to go to bed that early. And then it squawks at me, because my sleep latency is two to three minutes because I take progesterone which is sedating and helps me fall asleep. So, I just say I'm not going to worry about the sleep latency. I know why I fall asleep quickly.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think I've said this before, but I I've hit up ceiling on my Oura Ring. I don't think I can get better than a certain score that I received. I don't think I can get higher than 90, because of how late I go to bed. Even if everything else is great, it considers that a problem, even though it tells me to go to bed late. It's ironic. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. I want to just keep answering questions, but I guess, we'll have to wait till next week. So, a few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, directly emailquestions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and submit questions there. I will say, Cynthia, we've been getting because you weren't here before you were here. There's definitely been an influx in questions and Cynthia has come onboard and it's really exciting. I think people are really excited to get your perspective on things. So, keep the questions coming. The show notes again will be at ifpodcast.com/episode269 and you can follow us on Instagram. I am @melanieavalon. Okay, wait. Let me try. Cynthia is @cynthia_thurlow_.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. Just to make it complicated. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I think that's all the things. Anything from you, Cynthia, before we go?

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I'm loving all the questions. In fact, as Melanie stated, we have an influx of questions and we're just trying to diligently hit a couple every episode. So, keep them coming and I've been encouraging people that have been asking questions in my DMs across social media to email them to us, so we can answer them on air.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, definitely. Because people will DM me as well. But if you want it on the show, the email is where it needs to be. That's how it goes through the system to potentially get into the lineup. So, all right, well, this has been absolutely wonderful. Happy Memorial Day weekend.

Cynthia Thurlow: Thanks. To you, as well. 

Melanie Avalon: I will see you next week. 

Thank you so much for listening to the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Please remember, everything we discussed on this show does not constitute medical advice and no patient-doctor relationship is formed. 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, and original theme composed by Leland Cox and recomposed by Steve Saunders. See you next week.

[Transcript provided by SpeechDocs Podcast Transcription]

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Cynthia: cynthiathurlow.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Jun 05

Episode 268: Episode Giveaway!, Dry Mouth, Oil Pulling, Sleep Apnea, Adaptogens, Autoimmunity, Botox, Urine pH, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 268 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 Cynthia Thurlow, author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging.

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

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SHOW NOTES

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3:45 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At melanieavalon.com/beautycounter or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow And Use The Code CLEANFORALL20 For 20% Off PLUS Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: Melanieavalon.Com/Beautycounterquiz
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Episode 159: Anna Cabeca, Keto Green, Hormonal Changes, Menopause, Alkalinity, IF for Women, Reversing Infertility, Sexual Health And More!

enter to win a giveaway! write a Review of Intermittent Fasting Transformation, screenshot and Share with melanie and cynthia and be Entered to win! details on instagram @ifpodcast

19:35 - Listener feedback: Scott - Dry mouth

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34:55 - GREEN CHEF: Go To greenchef.com/ifpodcast130 And Use Code IFPODCAST130 To Get $130 Off Including Free Shipping!

42:10 - Listener Q&A: Maria - Struggling With IF

50:10 - Listener Q&A: Jessica - Botox

58:15 - LMNT: For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Free LMNT Sample Pack With Any Order! Learn All About Electrolytes In Episode 237 - Our Interview With Robb Wolf!

1:01:25 - Listener Q&A: Leah - Urine pH

Acid Alkaline Food Chart

Our content does not constitute an attempt to practice medicine, and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please consult a qualified health care provider for medical advice and answers to personal health questions.

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 268 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, biohacker and 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, Cynthia Thurlow, Nurse Practitioner and author of Intermittent Fasting Transformation: The 45-Day Program for Women to Lose Stubborn Weight, Improve Hormonal Health, and Slow Aging. For more on us, check out ifpodcast.com, melanieavalon.com, and cynthiathurlow.com. Please remember, the thoughts and opinions on this show do not constitute medical advice or treatment. And no doctor-patient relationship is formed. So, pour yourself a mug of black coffee, a cup of tea, or even a glass of wine if it's that time and get ready for The Intermittent Fasting Podcast.

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And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? When it comes to weight loss, we focus a lot on what and when we eat. It makes sense, because these foods affect our hormones and how our bodies store and burn fat. But do you know what is possibly, one of the most influential factors in weight gain? It's not your food and it's not fasting. It's actually our skincare and makeup. As it turns out, Europe has banned over a thousand compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup in the US due to their toxicity. These include endocrine disrupters, which mess with your hormones, carcinogens linked to cancer, and obesogens, which literally can cause your body to store and gain weight. Basically, when we're using conventional skincare and makeup, we are giving these obesogenic compounds direct access to our bloodstream. And then in our bodies, studies have shown they do things like reduce our satiety hormones, increase our hunger hormones, make fat cells more likely to store fat, and more resistant to burning fat, and so much more. If you have stubborn fat, friends, your skincare and makeup maybe playing a role in that. Beyond weight gain and weight loss, these compounds have very detrimental effects on our health and they affect the health of our future generations. That's because ladies, when we have babies, a huge percent of those toxic compounds go through the placenta into the newborn. It is so, so shocking. And the effects last four years 

Conventional lipstick, for example, often tests high in lead and the half-life of lead is up to 30 years. That means when you put on some conventional lipstick, 30 years later, maybe half of that lead has left your bones. On top of that there is essentially no regulation of these products on the shelves. That's why it's up to us to choose brands that are changing this. The brand that is working the hardest to do this is Beautycounter. They were founded on a mission to change this. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to be safe for your skin, so, you can truly feel good about what you put on. And friends, these products really, really work. They are incredible. They have counter time for anti-aging, counter match for normal skin, counter control for acne and oily prone, and counter start for sensitive. I use their Overnight Resurfacing Peel and vitamin C serum every single night of my life. And their makeup is amazing. Check on my Instagram to see what it looks like. Tina Fey, even wore all Beautycounter makeup when she hosted The Golden Globes. So, yes, it is high-definition camera ready. They have so many other products. Deodorant, shampoo and conditioner that I love, products for babies, and so much more. You can shop with us at beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. Also, make sure to get on my clean beauty email list, that's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. I give away a lot of free things on that list. So, definitely check it out. And you can join me in my Facebook group, Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare with Melanie Avalon. People share their experiences, ask questions, give product reviews, and I do a giveaway every single week in that group as well.

And lastly, if you're thinking of making Clean Beauty and Safe Skincare a part of your future like we have, we definitely recommend becoming a band of Beauty member. It's sort of 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. It is totally completely worth it. So, again, to shop with us, go to beautycounter.com/melanieavalon or beautycounter.com/cynthiathurlow and use the coupon code, CLEANFORALL20 to get 20% off your first order. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now, back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi, everybody and welcome. This is episode number 268 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Cynthia Thurlow. How are you today, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I'm doing well, my friend. How are you?

Melanie Avalon: I'm very good. I'm excited to hear we were just talking before recording about how you're going to be speaking at KetoCon. Would you like to tell listeners a little bit about that?

Cynthia Thurlow: It's exciting. They haven't had KetoCon in two years because of the pandemic and so some of my absolute, favorite humans in the health and wellness space are going to be there. People like Dr. Gabrielle Lyon, and Chris Irwin, and Ben Azadi, and Anna Cabeca, and Mindy Pelz, and all sorts of humans. I am going to be the first speaker on the first day, and I'm doing a book signing, and I'm doing a couple other things, a little Q&A. And so, I'll have an opportunity to actually see people up close and personal as opposed to its smaller events that I've been doing over the last year and a half. And Austin, such a great foodie city. For anyone who's been there, they have great restaurants and they generally tend to avoid inferior seed oils that you and I are both not fans of. It's always a location that I enjoy visiting. We actually have family there as well. But it'll be hotter than Hades, because it's Texas in the summer, but we will navigate lots of air conditioning, and I'm really excited to be going, and so, we'll make sure that we include-- I have a discount code if people would like to go to the three-day event, we'll include that in the show notes for everyone.

Melanie Avalon: What is the discount code?

Cynthia Thurlow: I think it's EWP, but I'll double check.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, awesome. We've had Anna Cabeca on the show twice, I think, on this show. So, listeners loved those interviews.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. Anna's amazing. She is amazing.

Melanie Avalon: Out of our whole audience, I'm sure some people are going. Hopefully, they can see you. That'd be really, really exciting. I'm actually interviewing, well, hopefully, Dr. Gabrielle Lyon on Monday. This Monday, tomorrow.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, I think your listeners are going to love her. She's so smart, she's coming out with a book next year, and she has such a fresh perspective on muscle protein synthesis and the value of muscle as an organ of longevity. I've just learned so much from her. In fact, I jokingly tell her, I quote her almost on the Daily, because she's made such a large impact on my own, not only on my own personal health journey, but also the information I share with women. I think your listeners will get a lot out of it. It'll really keep people thinking about how to be ensuring they're getting enough protein into their diets, because she did her residency and her training, working with gerontologic population. Older patients and so sarcopenia, which is this muscle loss with aging is a huge issue. 

And ladies, it's not a question of if but when. It will happen if you don't do everything you can to work against it. The one thing that I think is really important to dovetail into this conversation is that insulin resistance starts in our muscles. It really reaffirms the need to consume enough protein, and make sure that you are getting enough rest, and your strength training. It's really, really important. It's not just for aesthetics. I think a lot of people assume that those of us that talk about this that we're just concerned about aesthetics. I'm like, "No, no, no. This is really about your health and understanding that metabolic flexibility really starts with your muscle physiology."

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think it is just so important. I think that insulin resistance starts at the muscle. It's such a paradigm shift because I think most people think it would be in the fat cells that we first become insulin resistant, but yeah, the role of muscle is just so, so huge. I think there could be a lot of benefit of people, because we're so fat focused, but there could be so much benefit if we shifted our focus more to supporting muscle. Even when it comes to diet, eating more protein and rather than cutting calories, or cutting fat, or cutting carbs, just focusing on the protein is huge.

Cynthia Thurlow: Because I know even in the work I do with women, we've been conditioned that we want to count calories, we want to count macros constantly, and I just say, "Listen, if you can aim for 100 grams of protein a day, everything else will fall into place" and that blows people's minds. Even, I'll use a good example. I don't know if I've told you this. My husband is the meal prep guy in our house, because he's an engineer. He doesn't mind spending two or three hours prepping protein. That's really the most important thing because we have teen boys. This morning, all of the normal things we would have in the house weren't here and so, I had leftover shrimp, I had leftover mahi mahi. I calculated how much protein was in this meal. I'm always trying at a minimum 40 to 50 grams in a meal because it's so important to me make sure in my two meals. I'm really pushing the envelope with protein a little lower than what I would normally eat, and my husband was laughing at me, and he was saying, "Yeah, I know. I completely flummoxed your meal prep today, because we had to go to the grocery store." Sometimes, I think you just have to make do with what you have. But for me, if I hit a certain threshold of protein intake, I'm very full and then I'm ready to eat four or five hours later.

Melanie Avalon: I think that is so important, especially, because we get a lot of questions from people who struggle with feeling full or just reaching satiety. It's really incredible if you just focus on the protein aspect. That's what I do. As I eat exuberant amounts of protein. I probably eat too much protein. I don't know. I'm going to ask Gabrielle that tomorrow. 

Cynthia Thurlow: That'd be a great question for her. 

Melanie Avalon: I do. I don't know. I think I texted you at the other day. It's over 200 grams definitely each night.

Cynthia Thurlow: That's amazing. And for ladies that are listening, this is because Melanie is at different life stage, like, if I ate 200 grams of protein, I probably would fall over and my stomach would explode. That's why I do a bolus in two meals and I generally can hit it. I met Gabrielle in 2020, sorry. The first thing she said to me is, "You probably don't eat enough protein." I looked her like she was crazy. Of course, she was right. Since then, I was like, "You made such an impression." I went home and started measuring how much protein I was eating and I was like, "She's right." Pushing those protein values like Melanie is a unicorn. Don't listen to what Melanie is saying and feel somehow, you're inferior. It's just she is it a different life stage. She can probably bolus her protein that way. I have to divide it between two meals, but always aiming for 100 grams a day. Somedays I hit 110, somedays, if I'm really good, I can hit on her 120, but that's always the goal, two big meals.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm so excited to talk to her about this and this is actually really helpful for me prepping for tomorrow because I'm thinking about what I'm going to ask her. Because I actually wonder about myself. I've been eating this way for so long. The reason I'm eating this way is because I had an epiphany like a decade ago. I'm a little bit embarrassed to say this, but the reason I did this was I realized, protein is the one macronutrient that is most likely to become muscle and least likely to become fat. I realized, "Oh, if I just eat protein, I can literally eat as much as I want, and probably lose weight," and that's what happened. But then I just started loving protein so much. I'm wondering if my body preferentially uses protein as its fuel source, which I don't think is, I don't know necessarily that's healthy. So, I need to talk to her about that aspect.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, I can't wait to hear your conversation. She's just such a firmly science-based clinician and so smart. I was teasing her the other day because she's on all podcasts. She was just on Lewis Howes, and Drew Pruitt. Gosh, every day I turn around, there you are. [laughs] I love that she's getting information out there that all of us need. It's so, so important.

Melanie Avalon: How did you meet her?

Cynthia Thurlow: I met her at a conference. I was actually out in Portland, and we were on a panel together, and it was instantly, she was just one of these people I wanted to get to know and be friends with. I met her husband and her daughter. She now has another child, but just an instant connection. As I still do one of the first things she said to me, "You're probably not eating enough protein" and I was like, "What?" [laughs] After hearing her speak, I was like, "Oh, my God, I'm totally not eating enough protein." 

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm excited. And then one other little thing for listeners yesterday-- Was it yesterday? No, no, a few days ago, I interviewed Rick Johnson for this show. I can't wait. I'm not sure when we're going to release that episode, but that'll be very exciting for listeners to hear, because he just dived so deep into metabolic health, and insulin resistance, and fructose, and all these really cool things, and why our bodies naturally want to store fat based on our diet and lifestyle.

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. Well, he's probably, I would say, I was just looking at my metrics on my podcast today and he is a top three downloaded podcast for the whole year, which is just incredible. I think it's because he makes the information accessible. You and I both know, there are a lot of researchers that are just brilliant, but they don't bring it down to a level where the average person has something, they can take away. They just go, I don't know what that person just said, [laughs] "I have to have-- Melanie needs to translate it or Cynthia needs to translate it." But his enthusiasm is infectious, and his book is wonderful, and I just-- For anyone that's listening, before we even recorded together, he read my book. I was so touched because I thought to myself, "Here is this very respected researcher, who's reading a book about fasting and women" and he had so many nice things to say. He's just a really nice human, who just happens to be kind, compassionate, smart, and as far as I'm concerned, utterly brilliant.

Melanie Avalon: I sent him my book, I think after I interviewed him, maybe. He sent me a picture and he was like, "Here it is on my shelf. I'm reading it." I was like, "Oh, my goodness, [laughs] I'm so honored." Yes. So, I think listeners will really, really enjoy that. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely.

Melanie Avalon: Exciting announcement for listeners. We are actually going to do a giveaway for this episode. So, what all is included in the giveaway?

Cynthia Thurlow: It's products from one of my favorite pharmaceutical grade companies, Designs for Health and it's some of their special chocolates, and also some of my favorite products that they utilize. We thought it would be fun for people to participate in the giveaway. I think what we had talked about was, if you have purchased my book, we'd like you to leave a review, and screenshot, and share that with us, and we will enter you into the giveaway that will be sent to you, whoever is the lucky participant. But it's some of my favorite designs for health products, including things like inositol, which can be helpful for blood sugar regulation, as well as sleep support. And those chocolates, which are really interesting. Some of them have reishi in them, so medicinal mushrooms, not wacky mushrooms, medicinal mushrooms and some other things. So, really, it's a fun, a fun grouping of products.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. We're going to put that picture for the giveaway on our Instagram today, the day that this episode airs. So, again, to enter to win that, go to Amazon. Amazon, or any other review, or what are the platforms?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, so, Target, Barnes & Noble, your local bookstore, wherever you purchased it from, you just need to screenshot the review, and share that with us, and we will enter you into the giveaway.

Melanie Avalon: So, to recap, friends, listeners, go to Amazon or wherever you review your books, write a review of Cynthia's incredible book, Intermittent Fasting Transformation, send a screenshot to questions@ifpodcast.com, and we will enter you into that giveaway, and instructions, and pictures of the giveaway, and such will also be on our Instagram. So, check that out. Our Instagram is @ifpodcast. And important note for that giveaway. It is open only to listeners in the continental United States. Okay, shall we jump into everything for today? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. 

Melanie Avalon: To start things off, we have some listener feedback and this actually comes from Scott. It is feedback from a question which was pre-Cynthia. So, Cynthia, we got a question from a listener who really struggled with dry mouth and was looking for suggestions on how to deal with that, especially with fasting and things like that. Scott wrote in and he said, "Hello, ladies, on the April 11th episode, a question on dry mouth was asked. Here are two tips that helped me significantly. After coffee in the morning, coconut oil for 10 to 15 minutes." So, he's referring to oil pulling, not eating coconut oil.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's an important distinction.

Melanie Avalon: Do you do oil pulling, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I don't.

Melanie Avalon: I do. 

Cynthia Thurlow: I don't. I scrape my tongue. I use Primal Life Organics and I love their products. I don't, I don't I think for me, it's one extra step I just don't want to do.

Melanie Avalon: I do it. I remember when I started doing it, I was on-off, on-off because, I saw it as something like you just said, where something extra to do. But now, it's just so integrated in my routine that I do it while I'm-- because I eat really late, as listeners know. Every morning, I'm cleaning up the kitchen from the night before, unloading the dishwasher, and such. So, I oil pull while doing that. [chuckles] It's basically where you take coconut oil, or I use MCT oil, and you swish it around in your mouth, like Scott said, for 10 to 15 minutes. I think it's an Ayurvedic tradition. I know it's debated, but the thoughts are that it pulls toxins out of your mouth and potentially even bloodstream. Again, it's debated. I really enjoy it. He's saying that it might help dry mouth. Then he says, "He also oil pulls after each meal." I do not do that. Oh, and "he does one last oil pull right before bed." And then he says, "Lastly, if you have no breathing obstructions such as apnea, try mouth taping before sleep." Have you done in mouth taping?

Cynthia Thurlow: I have, but I'm not an obligate mouth breather, and I've actually had a sleep study, and I do not have sleep apnea. So, I've done it, but I didn't see an improvement. For me, I track my sleep on my Oura anyway. It gives me some degree of objectivity. But when I think about dry mouth, I start thinking about, "Are you taking a medication that's drawing your mouth out, like antihistamines?" I then think there are certain autoimmune issues that people can develop where they will get a dry mouth. And so, that's the direction my brain goes in. I think Scott's suggestions are really easy things to do upfront, while you're considering that maybe it's related as a side effect to a medication, maybe you're not drinking enough water, especially with electrolytes. I know we were just talking about Robb Wolf and I'm a huge fan of electrolytes. In fact, I would say that my HRV stuff has been off since I had surgery, which is not surprising and it was like, after two weeks, I was frustrated. I was like, "Okay, I'm doing all the things. Now, what do I need to--?" For the last three days, I've been really dedicated about electrolyte repletion, and my HRV numbers, and my sleep scores are improving. I have to believe that that's part of it. When I'm thinking about how this could pertain to Scott, I'm thinking about definitely thinking outside the box. But I love that he brought up oil pulling because that certainly doesn't hurt.

Melanie Avalon: Two thoughts to that. I'm glad you said that, because that jogged my memory about the original question. The woman who wrote in, she was on medications, which were non-negotiables for her at that moment and they were causing dry mouth. She was looking for ways to mitigate it while still being on the medication. And then the LMNT. I'm glad you brought that up. Did not play in this. They're actually a sponsor on today's show. So, listeners, listen for the ad in today's show, because our offer actually will give you a free sample pack. You can get some of those for free. I think our link is drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. Oh, and then the mouth taping, just really quickly, I know you and I both interviewed James Nestor. After I interviewed him, I tried mouth taping, but I didn't continue. I'm not a mouth breather as well. So, yeah, I've never done a sleep study though. Is it outpatient or inpatient?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, it was a little device shows up at your house, and you do it, and then it uploads all the data, and then someone meets with you and evaluates. Mine was fine. It didn't suspect that I had sleep apnea, but my integrative medicine doc insisted I do it. Probably, based on my age, this is one of those things I'm like, "Based on your age, we should probably do those" and I'm like, "Okay." [laughs] So, I'm happy to report that I'm middle aged without sleep apnea.

Melanie Avalon: I have three questions for you about that. One, is the device uncomfortable in any way? Would it interfere with your normal sleep wearing it?

Cynthia Thurlow: No. It was a little electrode and then I had a little pulse oximeter. If anyone's familiar, it almost looks like a little clip you put on your finger. It's monitoring your heart rate, and your pulse rate, your oxygenation. No, it wasn't. Although, the instructions identify, if you toss and turn, you might impact the validity of the test, so I made sure, I'm a corpse sleeper, meaning, if you were to ask my husband, I don't really move around a lot at night. By the time I fall asleep, I either lie flat on my back or on my side. I don't really toss and turn much. But I would imagine if someone's a disruptive sleeper who's back and forth that they could potentially knock the apparatus off. But it was pretty benign. It wasn't as cumbersome as a traditional polysomnography test, where you're in an environment where you've got electrodes all over your body, and you're in a lab sleeping in a hospital bed, which of course is not at all akin to the average person really having a restful night's sleep under those circumstances. 

This is probably a screening tool. If they're concerned about it, this might be a good screening tool, but it certainly is sensitive enough that if there isn't an indication that you're having periods of apnea, or hypopnea, or anything like that, that they can successfully rule out that you've got something significant. Plus, the other thing is, your listeners may or may not know this, but when I worked in cardiology as an NP, especially with men, if someone had a really big neck size, let's say, a size 17 shirt or greater, you assume they have sleep apnea until proven otherwise. Yeah, so, if someone has-- Even if it's a woman and they have a big neck, I'm going to be thinking about sleep apnea. Just one of those clinical pearls over the years that I learned. I used to, sometimes, I was like, "Do you snore when you sleep?" And people were like, "What?" I'm like, "Well, you have a big neck." And then as we get older, collagen and elastin don't work quite as well. And so, it's more common for people to get floppy in the back of their posterior pharynx, which can obstruct things or if they've got a deviated septum. I mean, there's a whole slew of things that can make you more prone to developing sleep apnea beyond just being overweight.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that was the reason I asked was because I've always been suspicious of the inpatient studies, because that just seems-- especially, if it's somebody who is already struggling with insomnia, it seems being in a foreign environment like that. It wouldn't naturally capture your normal sleep state. Being able to do it at home in a noninvasive manner, sounds pretty cool. I didn't even know that was an option.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. I'm presuming they leave it for people that they think there's a low threshold for them actually having a positive test. I know in order for insurance to cover CPAP or BiPAP, which is the traditional technologies to address sleep apnea. Beyond the lifestyle stuff, you have to have a formal test. We actually had a sleep specialist in our practice that just that's all they did. [laughs] All day long was sleep studies and so, I would sometimes circulate to that part of the practice and would marvel at all the technology that goes on with it.

Melanie Avalon: So, is it measuring things beyond something that an Oura Ring would capture?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. You have electrodes everywhere. They've got a 12-lead EKG that's going on, they're looking at brainwaves. It depends on how sophisticated the environment is, but more often than not untreated obstructive sleep apnea puts you at risk for diabetes and high blood pressure. We know that if you're not properly oxygenating your body, it's a stressor and not in a good way. We used to always say like, "How many of these patients--?" Once we started treating their sleep apnea, their blood sugar got better, their blood pressure got better, they lost weight. And so, much to what I tell my female patients and clients is, "If I can't get you to sleep through the night, I can't get you to lose weight." And for a lot of people, it's oftentimes that missing link. If anyone's listening to this and they know they snore or they have periods of apnea, where they stopped breathing, you definitely want to connect with your internist and ask them to consider evaluation. Now, some internists will actually just order the test. Others want to refer you to a pulmonologist or a lung doctor, so that they can follow you.

Melanie Avalon: Wow, that is insanely helpful and it also reminded me of one super random, very quick tangent, I promise. But the jostling of the device, I was listening again to another Peter Attia episode, and he mentioned something that I have always wondered and didn't understand until now. This is his theory. I don't know if this is true, because he said, it was his theory. I'm not sure if this is actually what's happening. But why do you think when people put in a CGM that it takes a few days to be correct? how the first few days that they say it can be off? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah, they tell you to throw the data away. I thought it had more to do with the device itself and trying to get acclimated, but is that due to people that are making changes because they then have the CGM.

Melanie Avalon: He said he thinks-- I thought it was as well what you said. He said he thinks it's because putting it in creates an injury to trauma in that area and that affects the use of glucose in that area. And so, it has to regulate. I was like, "Oh."

Cynthia Thurlow: When I think injury, I think-- [crosstalk] 

Melanie Avalon: He said trauma.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. It's like a micro trauma? Yeah. I have to tell you, I generally think Peter's pretty brilliant. I'll have to think about that. 

Melanie Avalon: I haven't googled it or researched it, but I was like, "That's interesting."

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I call it the Peter Attia rabbit hole, because sometimes he makes me think about something and I'm like, "All right, I need to process." And then after I process, I need to go down a couple rabbit holes and then I have to think more about it. But I think what's important is that we understand and consider that there might be different variables that impact how well a glucometer is reading things. Sometimes, I put on my CGM and I have to calibrate it. within 24 hours. My glucometer says one thing, and my CGM says another, and there's such a disparity. This one I have on beautiful, because I waited two and a half weeks after my surgery to even put it back on, because I just didn't want to know [laughs] what my body was doing. But I'm happy to report my blood sugar is looking pretty darn good. 

Melanie Avalon: How often do you wear one? 

Cynthia Thurlow: I wore it for about 18 months and then I needed a break. 

Melanie Avalon: Who, whoa, whoa. I thought I was doing a lot.

Cynthia Thurlow: Yeah. Well, because I was fascinated with it. And then in March, I decided because of the book launch, I didn't want to know, because I'm the type of person I get excited when I do a podcast. I get excited when I do something when I connect with other people. Every time I would do an interview, my cortisol would go up, and my blood sugar would go up, and I could literally just watch these little micro spikes all day long, and I was like, "This is going to make me crazy." I took a two-month break and it was good. Now, I'm putting it back on and I'm like, "Okay, now, I'm ready to--" I've got two more upstairs. I'll do it for a little while and then I'll reassess. But I think it's helpful. I don't think you have to do it for 18 months, but I tend to be a data geek and I tend to really enjoy tracking information. But I acknowledge I don't stress about it. I just go, "Hmm, okay, what do I need to do differently today?"

Melanie Avalon: I probably wore one for maybe four or five months and then I haven't recently. I actually just reached out to NutriSense and asked them to send me some more, because I want to jump back on. But that was something else-- Because the episode I was listening to was, it was either the CGM episode or just a blood sugar episode. But he was talking about HbA1c, and blood sugar regulation, and he did mention similar to what you just said, and I think this is important for listeners to know. He said, the highest spikes he sees and he thinks are often possible for people actually aren't from eating. They're from things like exercise, from the liver shunting out glucose. High stress events can definitely cause things like that. He was actually suggesting, if it makes people uneasy or stressed about it like you were talking about with the launch, just not looking at that data during-- because you know why it's happening. So, you have to know yourself, and know your relationship with the data, and how it makes you feel, and what's the most healthy way to engage with it.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think that's important. It's interesting. So, listeners may or may not know this. I carb cycle. On Friday. I decided Friday was going to be my higher carb day of the week. I had some sweet potato. I was happy to see that I didn't get much of a glucose or blood sugar spike. It was a difference of I think it went up 25 points, but it came down almost immediately and that's really what you want to see. Not this prolonged elevation in blood sugar. For me, on higher carb days, I'm really mindful of what mitigates my blood sugar response, and I almost always start with protein, and then add in the carb, and it's interesting. Have you read Glucose Goddess yet, her new book? 

Melanie Avalon: She's an author.

Cynthia Thurlow: She, I believe is a biochemist and her book is do doing really, really well. But she's a proponent of starting with vegetables first and then protein. I haven't gotten the book. I haven't ordered. It should arrive this week. 

Melanie Avalon: It's a new book?

Cynthia Thurlow: Mm-hmm. It's a new book and there a lot of people in the metabolic health space that are talking about it. I actually reached out to her, because I was like, "I'd love to interview you, I'd love to understand more about your book and your work, etc." But I think she's a biochemist. I think she's got a refreshing take and she's in Europe, I believe.

Melanie Avalon: Does she have a book before this or is this her first book?

Cynthia Thurlow: I thought this was her first, but it could be mistaken.

Melanie Avalon: I'm looking on Amazon right now. Is it how to be a Glucose Goddess?

Cynthia Thurlow: She's called Glucose Goddess, but I think-- What's the name of the book?

Melanie Avalon: Okay, yes. I just found it. So, it's--

Cynthia Thurlow: Glucose Revolution. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Glucose Revolution: The Life-changing Power of Balancing Your Blood Sugar by Jessie. I've no idea how you say your last name. Do you know how you say her last name?

Cynthia Thurlow: In-cha-chauspe. I don't know if she's French, but she speaks English really clearly. But I think she's French.

Melanie Avalon: It came out March 31st of this year and it already has 732 ratings five stars. Her endorsement is by Tim Spector. Have you heard back from her? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. She said yes and I'd be supposed to reach out to her. I was like, one of those things I wanted to make sure I mentioned it to you, because I know you would want to have her on your radar, too.

Melanie Avalon: Her other endorsement is from David Sinclair. Very cool. One of my favorites. I've to check it out and listen to your interview with her. 

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Melanie Avalon: Going back to Scott, he had a quick PS. He said, "Also that ashwagandha and kefir have both been shown to help with dry mouth." Are you a fan of adaptogens, Cynthia? 

Cynthia Thurlow: Oh, gosh, I use tons of them. I'm a huge fan. In fact, when my HRV was off and my readiness score was in the toilet, [laughs] I've been that way since I had surgery. I started tweaking with some adaptogenic herbs. And so, I'm a big proponent. I don't use them all the time, but clearly my body was still perceiving a significant stress response. I've been, again with the electrolytes last couple days, and then adding in. There's an herbal blend that I will sometimes use by Designs for Health that has got a little bit of licorice root, so it can be a little bit stimulative, it's got ashwagandha, it's holy basil. It's designed to be nourishing to the adrenal glands. To me, it's not at all stimulating. I don't take that if I feel I need an adrenal glandular, but I do love adaptogens. They're plant-based compounds, if people are unfamiliar with them. But to me, it's a really nourishing way to help balance cortisol. 

The really cool thing is that a lot of these adaptogenic herbs can help buffer cortisol if it's high and they can-- If your cortisol is low for some people, ashwagandha is a good example of this. It can do both. It can also be a little bit stimulating. That's the amazing thing with these plant-based compounds and that's why it's also important to work with someone that understands how a lot of these plant-based compounds worked. But to me, it's one of the easiest ways to provide adrenal support and stress support in the body, and it could be as simple as drinking holy basil tea. You don't even have to make it complicated, it doesn't have to be in a capsule form. There's a lot of different ways, a lot of different ways. I love teas in particular. There's a friend of mine, who's a master herbalist and an acupuncturist, and she has a company called Striving for Health. She makes the most amazing tea blends. I used to be able to see her in person, but I order her teas as gifts all the time, because people really enjoy them.

Melanie Avalon: I know. People are going to ask, "Are these teas okay for the clean fast?"

Cynthia Thurlow: It depends on which tea you're looking at. A lot of them have got different components, because she's a master herbalist, she pulls different things together. There are a couple, but I always say, when in doubt, just have it when you break your fast or have it before bedtime. Most of her herbal teas are not caffeinated. If they are, she is very clear about identifying which ones are. She's got some for immune support, she has some for stress, she has some that she calls them like love. It's not meant they don't boost your libido, but they're very calming and so, you can definitely check out her products on her website. It's really high-quality teas, and she sources very carefully, and she's a bit OCD. She used to have CBD products that were phenomenal. I think with the pandemic, it really changed her business model a bit. I think those are now on hold, but she really has some beautiful, beautiful tea as if people are tea drinkers or just want to try different things. One thing about tea, people may or may not know, a lot of it's contaminated. So, you always want to make sure you're getting from a good source, whether it's organic or working with a master herbalist, who knows a lot about where they're sourcing their products from.

Melanie Avalon: The adaptogen, I've had the most success with personally, at least, because I think something to understand is that we're all unique. And so, different adaptions might work for different people. The one that always works for me really well was rhodiola. I just respond well to that one.

Cynthia Thurlow: It's interesting. I've only had one patient who didn't do well with rhodiola. Generally, it's very nourishing. You take it before bed, it's very calming, it helps buffer cortisol. There was some genetic SNP. I forget what it was. But she took it in and she was like wide awake all night long?" I was like, "Oh, my God, I've never seen this happen." But yeah, we'll have to do a podcast and we'll dig into the adaptogens, because they're really fascinating. And how some are better before bed, some are better if you need things to be stimulating. There's really good research on ashwagandha and maca. Those are two that I generally say are-- there's enough research on both of them to feel comfortable saying. You can go, pull research, and look at the effects in women, and it's fascinating.

Melanie Avalon: Do you have thoughts on--? I remember when I was in my adaptogen research crazy phase people will say that ashwagandha is a nightshade. Have you heard that?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yes. And so, if you're sensitive to tomatoes, and potatoes, and peppers, you want to be careful with ashwagandha. To be fair, it's in that family. If you don't tolerate eggplant, and white potatoes, and peppers, you might want to be careful with ashwagandha.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Okay. Shall we go on to our next question. Thank you for the feedback, Scott. That was really helpful and inspired a lot of tangents. Shall we go on to our first question?

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. This is from Maria. Subject is: "Struggling with intermittent fasting." "I have been fasting for approximately five months, but I am struggling. I started with 16:8 and I've worked my way to fasting 20 to 22 hours a day. I have done two 24-hour fasts. I have Raynaud's, which makes fasting difficult on some days because I get so cold and it is hard to get the blood flowing in my hands. On a recent visit to my doctor for my annual exam, my blood work showed a positive result for inflammation specifically RA and ANA. I have an appointment with a specialist soon. I feel better than I did when I was eating all the time and I've lost a few pounds, but I'm not really seeing any changes in my body. Although, I'm not going to give up on fasting, I'm feeling discouraged. I know the process is different for everyone because everyone's body is different, and has different needs, and I keep reminding myself to let the process work. But I'm wondering if I need to tweak what I'm doing and what that should look like. I'm basically eating whatever I want during my window including sweets. I used to work out all the time, but I have not since school started in August. I hope to get back to it this spring. I am not sleeping well and I definitely do not feel energetic. Could I be one of those that will need to modify my diet, looking for some guidance on what to do? I don't want to give up on fasting."

Melanie Avalon: All right, Maria. Well, thank you so much for your question. I've always said Raynaud's. Is it Raynaud's, or Raynaud's, or--?

Cynthia Thurlow: We used to call it Raynaud's. And so, it's a vasospasm in the fingers.

Melanie Avalon: I used to struggle with that pretty badly. I think a lot of people don't realize that it's considered to be an autoimmune condition as well, which makes sense. It might tie in to your blood work that you got back about autoimmune indicators. I think this question is really important because they think there's a-- When she says at the end, "Could I be one of the few that will need to modify my diet? I think there's this big misconception in the fasting world that fasting is the be all end all. It will magically solve everything and that your diet choices don't matter. I just feel so strongly that your diet choices do matter and especially, if you're struggling with autoimmune conditions. With autoimmune conditions, your immune system is reacting to things and it has misidentified certain proteins in your body as being problematic, and having an immune attack on those, and that can very intensely be linked to dietary choices, and what you're eating, encouraging that, or sparking that, or keeping that going. Because I've had a lot of episodes on autoimmune issues, and elimination diets, and stuff. 

I would check out my interview with Dr. Will Cole for his book, The Inflammation Spectrum, because we really dived deep into autoimmune conditions and how they start-- By the time you see antibodies on your results, that was a long time coming. They don't just pop up overnight. That episode, the show notes are at melanieavalon.com/inflammation. 0

You don't need to give up on the fasting, because the fasting is not working. It is that's probably something else you're doing is not working. [chuckles] I don't think you are one of the few that needs to modify your diet. It's just my personal opinion. I think a lot of people will thrive when they find the diet that best suits them. This can be very empowering Maria, because there's so much potential here for change, especially since you haven't made any changes in what you're eating. There is so much potential here. I think you can make radical shifts, if you find the diet that works for you and figure out what's exacerbating these conditions. Oh, and I want to bring up to the Raynaud's. My Raynaud's went away when I adopted-- I was low carb, but I wasn't "paleo." I was still eating a lot of processed foods, a lot of gluten, even additives, and a high-fat, low-carb diet, and I had Raynaud's. When I switched to paleo, and cut out the additives, and just ate a diet of Whole Foods, fruit, vegetables, meat, my Raynaud's went away. So, there's a lot of potential. Do you have thoughts, Cynthia?

Cynthia Thurlow: I do. The first thought is, once you have one autoimmune issue, you're more prone to them again. Autoimmune issues almost always speak to hyperpermeability of the small intestine aka leaky gut. So when I think about, we already know she's got some type of inflammation. She's not sleeping well, she's eating a lot of sweets. She mentioned that she's eating sweets. This is not a judgment. I'm just pointing out what she shared with us. I think this really speaks to we need more information. When she sees that specialist, who I'm assuming is going to be a rheumatologist very likely. They may or may not talk to her about nutrition, but the lifestyle piece is critically important. You got to dial in on the sleep. And in fact, in my book, I talk a lot about the fact that if you can't sleep through the night, your body's not in the position to be able to add the hormesis or the hormetic stressor of fasting. This isn't to suggest 12 hours a day isn't great. That's a great starting point. But this is absolutely, positively. I don't know how old Maria is. She's perimenopausal, menopausal. We don't respond to stress the same way. 

My first recommendation would be, obviously, you're going to see that specialist which I think is great. You're already prone to developing another autoimmune issue. That's number two. Number three, you got to dial in on the sleep and the nutrition. I love Melanie's suggestion about looking into Dr. Will Cole's book, The autoimmune-- When we look at autoimmunity and we're looking at diets that re going to reduce inflammation in the body. It's pulling out the most inflammatory foods. Gluten, and grains, and dairy, and sugar, and alcohol, and really looking at your relationship with each one of those, if that's triggering, if that is bothersome to hear, really looking at like, "Well, maybe I'm eating the sweets, because I'm so tired, because my body's not getting the degree of nourishing sleep that it really needs." And so, that's really a great starting point. Start with the lifestyle piece, but the sleep, if you are not sleeping through the night and that's the way it is consistently, you have to address that first. Because we know based on research what is happening in your body when you're not getting restorative sleep, we know that it leads to blood sugar dysregulation, it leads to issues of leptin and ghrelin, which are these hunger and satiety hormones. You don't make good choices when you're sleep deprived. You're not going to crave broccoli, you're going to crave sweets because your body's looking for a quick fuel source. So, definitely keep us posted. But when I read that, those are the things that stood out to me.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so glad you brought up the sleep aspect. It's interesting. I was recording my intro, because the episode is releasing, I think in two weeks on my other show is with Dr. Michael Breus. I released one episode with him about sleep, but this is a Part 2. When I was recording the intro, I made the statement that I think sleep is, out of all the health things, the thing that I think about the most or most prioritize. I said it and then I was like, "Is that a true statement?" Because I think a lot about fasting, I think a lot about diet, but it is. I think sleep is so, so important. So, I'm really glad you brought that up.

Cynthia Thurlow: Absolutely. And I love Dr. Breus. He's another person that I think of like Rick Johnson, whose enthusiasm for what he does is infectious.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, he's so enthusiastic. All right. We have a question from Jessica. I'm really excited about this question. This came in and I was like, "Cynthia, would you be able to speak to this?" She said, "Yes, so." I was excited. The subject is: "Botox." And Jessica says, "Hi, Melanie. Welcome, Cynthia. I believe I've listened to all of the IF podcasts and I don't think I've heard any Botox discussion. Could IF I make my body metabolize Botox quicker? It usually lasts about three months. I have some non-IF friends, who have Botox that lasts longer, closer to four to five months. We go to the same plastic surgeon. So, same Botox supply, same Botox areas and injection procedure. I'm 40 years old, very healthy overall. I've done IF for two years and now I'm in maintenance mode. I'm 5'6" and I weigh 135 pounds. I've only been doing Botox for the last year. I don't know how my body would have reacted to Botox with no IF. I'm also curious on your thoughts on Botox in general. Do the two of you do Botox? I know it's a personal question, but I trust the two of you so much and would love any insight on the risk versus reward. I will say it makes me feel good when I look in the mirror, which is just one piece of the puzzle for my overall wellbeing. Thank you."

Cynthia Thurlow: This is a great question. I will be happy and transparent with everyone, and say that I have used Botox for about 12 years. I initially started using it because I have a very hypermobile forehead and it just bothered me. I also have one eyebrow that sits a little lower than the other. I think that Botox is fine for people to utilize. I think it really requires a very precise application, because no one wants to look like the real housewives who are over Botoxed, and overfilled, and over plumped. I think on a lot of levels-- I'm very transparent about this on social media because people are shocked when they hear me talk about. I said, "There's no shame, if you decide to use Botox." I've never had a bad situation with Botox. I've always gone to the same provider, who's in Northern Virginia and is arguably one of the most talented providers I've ever met in my entire life. I think there's nothing wrong with doing Botox. 

Obviously, I was middle aged when I started using it. The irony is that my Botox doesn't last as long as my friends does. The general school of thought because I've talked to plastic surgery friends of mine, I've talked about this with my own provider, and they think there are just some people who metabolize the Botox toxin faster than others. It isn't always in thinner, fitter people. Sometimes, it can be in heavier people. I think that's really speaking to our own physiology. Actually, what I do now is what we affectionately refer to as baby Botox. I do very small increments, but I do it more frequently and that's worked better for me. That's actually lasted longer than when I was doing, I don't know, 20 to 30 units every six months. Now, I do about half of that and do it more frequently. And that has worked well. I don't want to have a frozen face, I don't have any desire to pretend that I'm not a 50-year-old woman, but I even looked into research to see if there's anything to suggest. There's an association with being a faster metabolizer. There was nothing that I was able to locate, but I think this is probably just what makes you unique. 

Jessica and I share the same issue. I think on a lot of levels that the more often those of us that are on platforms that are connecting with a large variety of men and women, the more transparent we can be. We can destigmatize talking about these kinds of things. I think there's absolutely no shame. If you choose to get filler, or you choose to get Botox, or you just choose to get a laser, or whatever it is you decide to do, there's no judgement. I think we each have to decide what works best for us. I just build this into my discretionary budget that I use. I just say, "Okay, every eight to 10 weeks this is what I do." I do a little bit of Botox at a time, and that works a whole lot better for me, and it ends up being the same amount of money, because I'm not doing as large of a dose. I'm just doing a little bit at a time and that's worked better for me. How about you, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: I have not done Botox. I've been interested in doing it, actually. One of my friends said she did it. Well, she's done it in her face and then she did it for TMJ or I know it's not TMJ. It's TM. The right acronym is different. TMJ is actually just the name of the joint.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, that inflammation or people that have migraines still use it therapeutically.

Melanie Avalon: I clench my jaw and I get inflammation there. She said, "It's been a complete game changer getting it in her jaw actually." I'm glad to hear that you went into the research on the fasting. I probably would have thought that it speeds it up, but it's interesting to hear that there's not really any research. I was of the same opinion that people are so different. Some people metabolize things much faster than others and it's just really unique. I cannot agree more about the stigmas. I echo what you said and then what Jessica said, where she said that it's one piece of the puzzle for her overall wellbeing. I find it really ironic that and maybe I'm going to go on a soapbox, but we don't stigmatize makeup. And that's arguably changing your appearance. The only difference is that it's temporary and you can wash it off. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Or, how's it different than a filter? That's the one thing I struggle with this a little bit, because I'm obviously 50 years old and listeners may hear me say this more than once that there's so much [smoke and mirrors, and it's not unique to any one age group. But there's absolutely nothing wrong if you want to get your hair highlighted, or you want to go to the gym and exercise, or you choose to use an injectable, or you want to get your teeth whitened. I think of it all on a similar continuum, although, I do find and I'm sure you probably see this on social media. Sometimes, if someone looks really good for their age, they just assume they have to had done something to themselves. I think that's unfair. There are some people who are just unicorns and they look great, probably rolling out of bed. But the rest of us may require a little bit of, I don't want to use the word, smoke and mirrors. We might require a little bit of makeup or we might require-- Maybe we've got Spanx on underneath their dress. These things that make us feel good about ourselves. It's not for external validation. It makes us feel better.

Melanie Avalon: If we're going to stigmatize cosmetic surgery fillers, Botox, I honestly think it should be in the exact same bucket as filters on Instagram, makeup, even the clothing you choose to wear, because all of it is be at the motive to make yourself feel more attractive for yourself or for other people. The motive is making you feel better in your own skin and your actual appearance. And so, I don't think there's anything wrong with that. I think people should just do what makes them feel good. Yeah, I have no issues with it at all. I do think it's really important to do your research and make sure you're working with practitioners, so that you'll be happy with it. So, it doesn't become something that you obviously regret.

Cynthia Thurlow: We don't want anyone to look like a muppet. That's my general gestalt. I have teenage boys and sometimes, they'll ask if they see something on TV or in a print ad. They'll say, "What's wrong with that person's face?" I'm probably going to guess they used a little too much filler." There's no judgement, but to each his own about what works for you and what aligns with you philosophically and otherwise. I just think the world is a better place when we don't pass judgment on one another and we just accept that we may have different opinions about a lot of different things.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And with the judgment piece, what does it matter? What does it matter what somebody else looks like? [chuckles] Why do we have to judge them or even have a feeling about that either way? It's people's personal life.

Cynthia Thurlow: I think people get triggered, and then they get nasty, and they're keyboard warriors, and--

Melanie Avalon: Projection. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Exactly, exactly. 

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Melanie Avalon: All right, shall we answer one more question?

Cynthia Thurlow: Yep. This is from Leah. "Hello, I was introduced IF via Gin's book, Fast. Feast. Repeat by one of my best friends three weeks ago while I was visiting her. I quick read through two thirds of it while I was there. I agree with everything I saw so far and started IF that very day. Now, I'm binging the podcasts. Melanie, I just discovered you have a separate one like Gin does and will be starting that one very soon along with searching out your book, What When Wine. I'm on episode 104-ish of this one. I vaguely recall an episode with a guest. I think that mentioned testing urine pH or maybe it was in the Stories Podcast, but can't really remember what the pH is supposed to ideally test as alkaline or acidic, nor what this indicates. 

I have a matchbook pH strips that I ordered immediately after hearing about such an easy and inexpensive way to test things, but ADHD and can't remember what I'm testing my pH for. Could you all shed some light on this, and maybe go into the science behind it or something? You both explain things so well and in layman's terms, so it makes sense to all of us listening. I did have another question originally, but I wanted to catch up on the present before asking. And although, I'm only a third of the way through the episodes, they've all been answered in the podcast so far. Joovv, Dry Farm Wines, and the bone broth people, I'll hear the name next podcast, LOL. All sounds awesome and I intend to give each one of them my business as I'm able and when I have the freezer space. Thanks for such awesome recommendations. Much appreciated. Leah."

Melanie Avalon: All right, Leah, thank you so much for your question. Perfect timing. The guests that you're referring to was Dr. Anna Cabeca, who we were talking about earlier. We'll put a link in the show notes to the episodes that we've had with her. But so, basically, the idea with urine testing for pH is that our bodies need to maintain a certain pH in the blood. I just asked Cynthia on it. She said, "It was what 7.35 to--"

Cynthia Thurlow: 7.45.

Melanie Avalon: 7.45. Here's the thing. People will often make the argument that your food choices and everything don't matter, because we don't really see a change in the blood pH, because our bodies buffer it accordingly, which tends to be true. When you measure your blood pH, you're usually not going to see it outside of the parameter that needs to be in. If you're eating a really acidic diet, for example, your body has to do things to buffer that acidic load and create the more alkaline state that needs to be in. That requires certain minerals and nutrients. Those have to come from somewhere. It's a stressful process for your body to maintain the pH that needs to be, if the diet that you are eating doesn't quite support that. The place that you can see that, because again, measuring your blood, it's probably not going to show up in your blood. You can see it in your urine, because that's where you're going to see the metabolic byproducts of that process. Measuring your urine with a pH strip can show you if your body actually is "more acidic." And again, the confusing thing about it is your body's actually not acidic, because your body is mitigating it but it's a stressful process that can be pulling minerals and such from your bones, for example, so eating a diet that supports a healthy pH state and they often call it an alkaline diet can support that.

And then there's a lot of controversy around that because there's a difference between-- If you go online and you google alkaline versus acidic foods, you're going to get a lot of different lists. Because some people will say, the certain foods are alkaline and acidic based on the actual food itself. Some people go by the PRAL score, which I think is more important and that's the potential renal acid load and that actually speaks to the metabolism of those foods and the resulting acidic or alkaline effect it has based on the ash that is created from those foods. I would go by those lists. You can just actually google PRAL, P-R-A-L. We can actually put a link in the show notes. There're some pretty good lists online. But yes, so, the purpose of the pH is to see if your body is more easily maintaining the pH that it needs to be at. What are your thoughts on that, Cynthia? I might have screwed some of that up. 

Cynthia Thurlow: No, I think you did a beautiful explanation. When I think about pH and obviously, my backgrounds in ER med in cardiology. We did arterial blood gases. We were looking at really minutia of information on people who are very sick. I think that testing urine pH is certainly reasonable to be looking to see if you're leaning more alkaline or acidic. I think what's most important is that you're really leaning into a healthier, less processed diet. Lots of polyphenol rich foods, if you tolerate-- I start thinking about eat the rainbow along with less processed meats, eggs, fish, etc., you're going to more naturally lean towards an alkaline-based methodology. Do I routinely check my urine?" No, but my integrative medicine doc every once in while wants me to check. I have these strips in my house. You can buy on Amazon and it's very easy to do. I use it as a check in. I can pretty much tell you that I exist in an alkaline state more often than not, but if I were to eat too much dark chocolate or if I ate a bunch of processed food, I'm sure I'd probably lean more acidic. But I don't think anyone should worry or stress about this too much, because our body does a great job of buffering. We have bicarbonate, we have things in our bodies that are designed to buffer pH. There's a whole methodology in our respiratory system and our kidneys really do a nice job fine tuning this. So, don't put a lot of stress into it. I'm so glad that you are enjoying Gin's book. And yeah, there's so much goodness in this podcast. I'm glad you're enjoying it.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Yeah, I've actually also heard, I don't know if this is true, but we actually talked about this before on the show when I was going down my rabbit holes of researching pH and alkaline and acidic states. People will say that the reason you sigh after a big meal is because one of the methods of offloading, because you're talking about all the different ways that we buffer that acidic load is actually through our breath. I don't know if that's the case, but it actually makes sense to me.

Cynthia Thurlow: Well, you saying the lungs and the kidneys are what provide the buffering, whether it's alkalosis or acidosis. When you look at results from an ABG, it can show you how the body is trying to compensate and it's really cool. Back in my critical care days, I loved diving into all the science behind that. But the body really is very sophisticated. Unless you have a kidney problem or you have a respiratory problem, your body works very, very hard at fine tuning your blood pH and pH in your body overall because we know for homeostasis it's really important that we keep things in this very narrow parameter.

Melanie Avalon: I know we're running out of time, but even something-- Because when talking about how our body regulates things, it really is impressive. For example, calcium, people could be following a pretty low-calcium diet. I don't want to make absolutes. But if you go to the doctor and test your blood calcium, it's probably still going to be fine. It's really impressive what the body can do. Even when you think about blood sugar, I know we talk about people's blood sugar spiking. Even the massive spikes that we think of, if you compare that to the amount of sugar people are taking in that led to that, it's really impressive that the body even keeps it at numbers that we would think would still be really high. I think we see that with people who have type 1 diabetes because that's when they will get blood sugars that are even in the five hundreds or something. It's like, "Oh, so, this is what would be happening if the body actually couldn't regulate." 

All righty, well, this has been absolutely wonderful. 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. A reminder to listeners to definitely enter the giveaway that we talked about in the beginning of the episode that was to win an awesome collection of goodies from Cynthia's team, supplements and some really fun things. Check out our Instagram, @ifpodcast.com to see what you can win. And again, to enter, write a review of Cynthia's book, Intermittent Fasting Transformation on Amazon, Target, Barnes & Noble, wherever you got the book from. Send a screenshot to questions@ifpodcast.com and we will enter you into that giveaway. This is open to listeners in the continental United States only. 

And then some more resources for you guys before we go. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode268. The show notes will have links to everything that we talked about as well as a full transcript. So, definitely check that out. You can follow us on Instagram. I am @melanieavalon on Instagram and Cynthia, I promise, Sunday, I'll remember your handle. Wait, let me try, let me try @_cynthia_thurlow. 

Cynthia Thurlow: @cynthia_thurlow_. I know and for everyone who's listening, it is innately frustrating, because I was not able to have the same name across social media. So, yeah, my team even scratches their head. It's @cynthia_thurlow_ and I have a blue check, so, you'll be able to find me. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes, you're very easily findable. So, that's good. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful and I will talk to you next week. 

Cynthia Thurlow: Sounds great. 

Melanie Avalon: 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 and no patient-doctor relationship is formed. 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, and original theme composed by Leland Cox and recomposed by Steve Saunders. See you next week.

[Transcript Provided by SpeechDocs Podcast Transcription]

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Cynthia: cynthiathurlow.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Dec 26

Episode 245: Modifying Eating Windows, Plant Based, Processed Food, Chronic Fatigue, Soy & Tofu, Sugar Alternatives, Corn, Potatoes, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 245 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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To submit your own questions, email questions@IFpodcast.com, or submit your questions here!! 

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get the Ultimate New Year’s Bundle, more than 7 pounds of meat added to your first box for FREE!!

3:35 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Stay Up To Date With All The News About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase Or Head Straight Over To avalonx.us To Place Your Order Now!

18:35 - JOOVV: For A Limited Time Go To Joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

22:00 - Listener Q&A: Melanie - episoode #1 and eating earlier

27:00 - Listener Q&A: Angela - Processed vs. Plant Based

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #61 - Dr. Cate Shanahan

The Chef's Garden Book

54:10 - bioptimizers: Go To p3om.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

56:20 - Listener Q&A: Julie - How did i get here?

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 245 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. 

Hi, friends. I'm about to tell you how you can get more than seven pounds of high-quality responsibly farmed meat all for free. Yes, for free. So, the holidays are upon us and I don't know about you, but when I think about holidays, I often think food, and then the second thing I often think is, "Hmm, I wonder what will be the quality of all of the meat and seafood at all of the family gatherings." It can definitely seem intimidating and expensive to get high quality meat that you can trust. Thankfully, there is an easy solution. It's a company I've been a fan of for years and that is ButcherBox. They are an incredible company that takes out the middleman of the grocery store to directly connect customers to farmers. They vet these farmers, they find the farmers that truly support the health of the animals, the environment, and ultimately, your health so that you can finally get meat of the highest standards, 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free range organic chicken, wild caught seafood, and more. And trust me, the seafood industry is sketchy. ButcherBox goes to great lengths for transparency and sustainability so you can truly feel good about what you're eating. I read Dr. Robert Lustig's book, Metabolical and was blown away by the shocking statistics of fraud in the seafood industry. But back to meat. ButcherBox's meat is delicious. Each box contains eight to 14 pounds of meat depending on your box type. It's packed fresh and shipped frozen for your convenience. You can choose a curated box or customize it to get exactly what you want, and it's shipped straight to your door, and it tastes delicious.  

The ButcherBox steaks are honestly some of the best steaks I've ever had in my entire life. My dad is a huge spaghetti fan and he remarked that the ground beef was the best ground beef he had ever had. My brother reported back about the porkchops and the bacon, basically, this stuff is delicious. And for limited time, ButcherBox is offering new members an amazing deal for the new year. Just sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast, and you'll receive the ultimate New Year's bundle in your first box. This deal includes grass-fed, grass-finished ground beef, organic free-range chicken thighs, and heritage breed pork butt. That's more than seven pounds of meat added to your first box all for free. So, get this New Year's bundle before it's gone by going to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. That's butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. 

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know 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 you know 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 sort of 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 245 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 fabulous because I am at the beach cottage with Will and we're having a great time.  

Melanie Avalon: That's lovely.  

Gin Stephens: It was a spur of the moment kind of a trip. I was going to come this weekend with college friends, but then we had the ACC championship. So, we did that last weekend. So, they're like, "We can't get away again." I'm like, "That's fine. I'll go by myself." Will didn't have anything to do. I'm like, "Come with me." So, yeah, he's doing a lot of painting. Now, he's sitting on the beach with his guitar. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: He's so creative.  

Gin Stephens: He really is. He is so creative. He's 22 and completely right brained and is happiest when he's creating something. He likes to create music, he writes music, and now, he likes to paint. So, I love that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Well, I had a fun event on Friday.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, what was that?  

Melanie Avalon: I had dinner with one of my podcast guests.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's fun. I love it.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. It was very exciting. It's weird. I was thinking about it. Most of my really good friends now are all people I've met on my Biohacking Podcast. Isn't that weird? It's so crazy.  

Gin Stephens: You know, it sounds weird except that a lot of my really good friends are people that I met through my Intermittent Fasting Groups and like their real good friends. I mean, obviously, my college friends are people I've known a long time but a lot of my really close friends have been on my podcast. All right, I didn't meet them till after they were on my podcast like face-to-face.  

Melanie Avalon: The people I talk to pretty much every day are people I met in the podcast and then just started talking to after and really got to know really well. So, the person I went with though, I'm not super close or anything, but it was Dr. Eric Zielinski. So, he wrote The Healing Power of Essential Oils. I think that's the title of his first book. I didn't even realize we have the same agent, all of us.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's great. So many people do.  

Melanie Avalon: I know, I know. Same literary agent. Yeah, it was so fun. So, it was me, and him, and his wife, and their new baby, and my sister, and it was just a really fun time. It was really fun because yeah, like I just said it was only the second person I've met in real life from the show. Because he actually lives here in Atlanta.  

Gin Stephens: I've met people in real life that you haven't met in real life that I met through you.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. Are true. So, yeah, it was really fun.  

Gin Stephens: Like, I can think of three. Three people that I've met in real life that I know through you only, but I've met them in real life and you have not. [laughs] And I'm not counting Cynthia Thurlow, because I actually met her first.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, she and I met first. We were on a radio program together. We didn't know anything about the other person and we both talked afterwards about here, we're like, "What is she going to say? Is it going to be the opposite of what I say?" But we found we were very in sync.  

Melanie Avalon: I was actually reading her book last night, her new book. 

Gin Stephens: Her book comes out March.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, in March. Okay. So, her book is about intermittent fasting and I'm not saying this to sound like a 'no' at all, but when I read a book about intermittent fasting, it's just so overwhelmingly familiar, like all of the information.  

Gin Stephens: You're like, "Yep, yep, yep."  

Melanie Avalon: It's hard for me to think what would this be like to read this. 

Gin Stephens: For the first time?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.  

Gin Stephens: I know what you mean. I 100% get it. But yeah, I met her first and then, you met her later. But the other three, can you think of all three of them?  

Melanie Avalon: Shawn Wells.  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: Anna Cabeca.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, I forgot about her. Okay, four. [laughs] Yes, Anna Cabeca, four, because I forgot that I met her through you. But I did. Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: Wade Lightheart.  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: And, okay, so, there's one more.  

Gin Stephens: Yep. Somebody, he is been on our podcast. Oh, and there's another one, too. There's five. Both of the others have been--  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, Todd White.  

Gin Stephens: Yes. And of course, we can't forget the main one. The reason I was at the conference.  

Melanie Avalon: JJ Virgin.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness.  

Gin Stephens: Isn't that fun? Now, I've met all of them face-to-face.  

Melanie Avalon: That's so crazy. That was a fun game. I like guessing games.  

Gin Stephens: I know you do. That's why I was happy to do it because I was like, "Melanie's going to like this." You did a good job and you've got all of them. [laughs] And they're all just lovely. That's the best thing.  

Melanie Avalon: That's what I was reflecting on. Because I was posting about it on my Instagram today, and I was just reflecting on how it's all really, really wonderful people. Literally, it's my closest friends now, not necessarily that group that we just mentioned but-- 

Gin Stephens: The conference that I went to where I met all of them face-to-face, you know, JJ Virgin puts it on, and it is the best community of people. You know, the people that you know from your podcast are all probably very in the same circle. I really think JJ Virgin has a lot to do with that because she has a philosophy of, we should all work together and lift one another up, and like a rising tide lifts all ships and that everyone works together, and that we're not in competition, we're in collaboration.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's definitely the way I feel it.  

Gin Stephens: That's exactly the way this whole community feels. So, everyone is a generous supporter of everyone else. Even if you don't have the same philosophies about things, people talk about them respectfully together, and it really is just an amazing group that she has put together and cultivates. 

Melanie Avalon: I think that's so important. I also, think there's often, I don't think it's necessarily true but there's this cultural idea that like women in particular get competitive when it comes to business rather than collaborative, and yeah, that just doesn't resonate with me.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. And the whole idea that we can disagree about things and still like each other. I'm talking to in a big general, not like just me and you. But in a general world of like the health world.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yes.  

Gin Stephens: Like Wade Lightheart and his partner that eat differently. We've talked about them a lot but that you can have different philosophies and still collaborate. Anyway, I just love it.  

Melanie Avalon: I do, too. I have one more update. I can't say what it is yet exactly.  

Gin Stephens: That's a fun one. No, I'm kidding.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. But I just want listeners to know that I'm really getting closer to currently developing a supplement number two and it's very exciting.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, here's the funny story. Can I tell you a funny story about supplements?  

Melanie Avalon: Yes.  

Gin Stephens: I was telling Chad about your supplement and how great it was going. I'm like, "I'm never going to make a supplement." He's like, "What do you mean?" Because he's a medicinal chemist. [laughs] So, I actually have someone living in my house who probably could formulate a supplement. He's like, "What do you mean? We could make a supplement." I'm like, "I don't want to make a supplement." He's like, "But we could. We could do that." He's at the point. He just found out he can retire after one more semester. He can retire and start drawing retirement. He's not sure if he's going to. He hasn't decided but he can. So, he might be like, "Let's make some supplements." I'd be like, "Oh, okay, you're in charge of that, Chad." But after I've always said, I wouldn't, I'm still not planning to but the way he reacted was just so funny.  

Melanie Avalon: That's really funny.  

Gin Stephens: He's like, "I could do that." I mean, he totally could. Drug design is his thing but [laughs] he's going to have to be 100% in charge. It'll be Chad not me. I don't really want to make supplements. But I'm glad it's going well for you.  

Melanie Avalon: It's going so well. It's just so fun and I said this before, but it's just really exciting to see this concept manifest in real life and for it to work so well. Oh, my goodness, so, the supplement, I haven't mentioned the one out right now, which is serrapeptase. I think, I've mentioned before that I have this mole on my nose that won't go away that I keep getting it like lasered off or shaved off and it keeps coming back. I was wondering if the serrapeptase would do something, but I think it's actually going away now.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, then I've got to get your serrapeptase and take it because I've got an eyebrow mole and I need that eyebrow-- It drives me crazy. The hair grows straight out of it like a witch's mole. I mean, so, I have to pluck it. Like right in the middle of my eyebrow, I have to pluck all that hair out, and then, I have a bald spot in the middle of my eyebrow. It could be worse, right?  

Melanie Avalon: So, it's colored? Like it's brown?  

Gin Stephens: No. It's skin color. It's a skin color mole.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay, yeah. That's what mine is, too.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. But it is right there in the very middle of my eyebrow, and the hair that grows out of it right there just sticks straight out like crazy. One day when I'm really old, I'll just let it go. I won't care.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, maybe you can try my serrapeptase and maybe it will. 

Gin Stephens: I need to. Does that make my mole go away then that would be amazing?  

Melanie Avalon: That would be so exciting.  

Gin Stephens: So, I will never do a supplement because you'll have all the supplements. So, I don't need to. 

Melanie Avalon: I think, I definitely know my next five that I want to do. So, when this episode comes out, we're doing a holiday special. Okay, we're logging down the details probably tomorrow. So, this might change. But what I think it's going to be is, I think, it's going to be 25% off which is crazy. So, 25% off, and then, I think, it's going to be that if you order it while it's 25% off, then you get like a special link. You can send to your friends, and then, if they use that link, they get 20% off of a future order, and you also get 20% off for every friend that purchases. It's like refer a friend thing. So, that's all at avalonx.com, and then my email list for information about the future supplements, and then, like that special and all the things is melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase. S-E-R-R-A-P-E-P-T-A-S-E. So, yeah, and last thing, do you know what I really want to develop Gin, I guess, it would be under my supplement line, but it's not a supplement that you take internally.  

Gin Stephens: I don't know if I could ever guess.  

Melanie Avalon: I want to make a fasting fat unlocking cream.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. What? You're going to have to explain it. I'm so confused. [laughs] I feel like fasting just unlocks the fat already.  

Melanie Avalon: Well. Okay, so, a lot people have stubborn fat. It's often subcutaneous fat. So, it's like that fat that you can pinch. So, love handles, and maybe on your arms, or on your abs. So, yes, fasting puts you into a fat burning state and encourages fat burning but a lot of times those actual fat cells, there's receptors on fat cells that basically determine whether or not they are releasing their fat or storing their fat. Even if you're fasting, fasting does not necessarily mean that you'll automatically, easily open up all your fat cells to be used. Especially, depending on their metabolic state and where they're at like people who you know, yo-yo diet, I think, the more you lose and regain, and lose and regain fat, the more resistant your fat cells come to losing their fat again. So, if you literally put a compound into the fat cell topically that activates receptors that encourages the fat cells to release their content, then, I think, you can more easily burn stubborn fat while fasting. So, it's like upgrading your fasting, like if people were to drink coffee and find that that helps them burn more fat.  

So, there are different compounds that do this like caffeine, and menthol, and green tea, and I found one that I currently use, and I like the ingredients mostly, but it's not completely clean, and I just want to make one that has no problematic ingredients and just these active ingredients, and I think, it can go two ways people who have really stubborn fat and maybe a lot of it, it can help that for sure. But also, people who don't even necessarily need to lose weight, but they have like, just it seems little stubborn areas, I think, it can really, really benefit that while fasting. So, it would be a fat unlocking cream. It wouldn't actually burn any fat, but it would make it easier to burn, to spot treat fat burning while fasting.  

Gin Stephens: All right, well, that's interesting.  

Melanie Avalon: That's my pitch. [laughs] I'm so excited. Yeah, I'm inspired because the one I've ordered is actually, I'm a bit shocked how well it's working, but it has stuff in it that I don't like. So, I've got to make my own version.  

Gin Stephens: Well, it's fun to know connections so that you can make things that have just the ingredients you want in them.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, definitely. Like the one I'm using right now is like bright blue. I'm like, well, it was not good, dyes and stuff like that.  

Hi, friends. Okay, we have thrilling news about Joovv. They have new devices and we have a discount. Yes, a discount, no longer a free gift, a discount. As you guys know, there are a few non-negotiables in my personal daily routine. I focus on what and when I eat every single day and I also focus on my daily dose of healthy light through Joovv’s red light therapy devices. Guys, I use my Joovv all the time. Red light therapy is one of the most effective health modalities you can use in your home. I've personally seen so many health benefits, I find it incredible for regulating my circadian rhythm, helping my mood, boosting my thyroid, smoothing my skin, and I've also used it on multiple occasions for targeted pain relief. Anyone who's familiar with red light therapy, pretty much knows that Joovv is the leading brand. They pioneered this technology and they were the first ones to isolate red and near-infrared light and make it accessible and affordable for in-home use.  

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And this is my personal favorite update. So, for those of us who like to use do devices to wind down at night, they now have an ambient mode that creates a calming lower intensity of light at night. Guys, I am so excited about this. Using this light at night is way healthier than bright blue light from all of our screens, and much more in line with your circadian rhythm. I was using my current Joovv devices at night anyway to light my whole apartment, so this new ambient mode is really going to be a gamechanger for me. Of course, you still get the world-class customer service from your helpful, friendly Joovv team. So, if you're looking for a new Joovv device for your home, we have some very exciting news. You can go to joovv.com/ifpodcast and use the coupon code IFPODCAST. You'll get an exclusive discount on Joovv’s newest devices. Yes, discount, I said it. That's J-O-O-V-V dotcom, forward slash, I-F-P-O-D-C-A-S-T. Exclusions apply. And this is for a limited time only. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show. 

Melanie Avalon: Shall we jump into everything for today?  

Gin Stephens: Yep, let's get started.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, to start things off-- Oh, I don't think I even realized this was from a Melanie.  

Gin Stephens: I've actually met this Melanie face to face.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really?  

Gin Stephens: Yes. She was on my podcast. So, I wonder when she sent this one in, it might have been like a long time ago. It might be an old one because I've met her face to face and she was on my podcast.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, nice.  

Gin Stephens: I know.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, hello, Melanie. The subject is: "Episode number 1 and eating earlier." So, Melanie says, "I just listened to my first IF podcast." So, she had just listened with this had been a while ago, you think?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know. I don't know because I don't know when people listen to Intermittent Fasting Stories, and then, they might run out of those, then, they start Intermittent Fasting Podcast, so, it's hard to know. The question that she asked about me makes me feel like maybe this was before. You'll see when you keep reading it.  

Melanie Avalon: So, she says, "It was fantastic. I really enjoyed it." And this is a question we get a lot. She says, but where is Episode 1, on iTunes, it starts as number two. Yes. There is no Episode 1. We had technical difficulties with it and it's lost forever. I don't even know. Yeah, it's lost. [laughs] I'm sorry. It's funny. Sometimes, I think, occasionally we've had a question where they say, they actually heard Episode 1, and that's how you know they've been there since day one. Her second question. She says, "Gin was talking about how if there is a family gathering i.e., brunch she eats earlier. Does she still follow up with a five-hour rule and stop eating after five hours no matter what time of day it is? Thanks, and again loved my first episode, you both sound great together." She's from Canada. 

Gin Stephens: Yep. And this is why I think she probably knows the answer to this now. But the answer is, of course, probably, people who've been listening a long time know that I do not time my window anymore at all. For example, yesterday, I had brunch with Will. It actually wasn't very early we went at 2. There's this place down here they have this jazz brunch, and it's fantastic, and I love to go there. It's called LOCAL. It's in Pawleys Island. If anyone's ever down in the Pawleys Island area, go to LOCAL, I love it. They made me a mocktail, I had eggs Benedict, we split avocado toast, we listened to jazz, yum. But it was 2 o'clock. And then, if I was still following the 5 o'clock rule, I would be like, "All right, must stop eating by seven." Nope. [laughs] I no longer do that at all. I just go with the flow depending on what day it is and what's happening. There are many days that my window is shorter.  

For example, let's see what day is it. Today's Sunday. We're recording. We came to the beach. Okay, Wednesday and Thursday--, both Wednesday and Thursday, I was busy. So, I didn't eat until later probably, 6:00, 6:30, something like that. I had dinner, closed my window less than an hour, two days in a row. Then, I've had a couple of days right after that with longer windows. So, I feel like it all balances out. I would really be, I mean, of course, I don't track it. It would be interesting to see what my average is. I bet my average is probably five hours or less but I don't even know. So, I no longer track anything. I just wait till I open my window and then I close it when I'm done whatever that may be. 

Melanie Avalon: When you're tracking, would you adjust for that?  

Gin Stephens: Well, when I was trying to lose weight, see that was a different thing. When I was trying to lose weight, I was following Dr. Bert Herring's Fast5, and he had 19:5 as the foundation of his plan. And his one rule is, find a consecutive five-hour window every single day and stick to it. That was the only rule. It needed to be a consecutive five-hour window. And he didn't even talk at all about tracking the fast. It was like, you have that, the boundaries of the five-hour window, you open, you close it within five hours. He's like, "Of course, you're going to have some days where it's longer, some days were shorter, but in general, five-hour window." So, that's the way I was raised up my early days with the Fast-5 program. So, when I was losing weight, that's what I tried to stick to.  

Melanie Avalon: When you were doing that, if you had opened it earlier, you would just do it earlier five-hour window?  

Gin Stephens: Yes. But that didn't always work so well. People have heard me talk about this before, when I open early, even if I have a giant brunch at noon, a giant meal. Let's say, I have a Thanksgiving dinner at noon.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. 

Gin Stephens: I'm probably going to feel great till about 8 PM. It is just about what I've noticed for myself. So, I'm like, "I'm just going to eat this one big meal, and then, I'll be fine. And then, I'm fine, I'm fine, I'm fine, I'm fine." 8 PM rolls around, I'm starving. So, I have two options at that point. I can be like, "I'm just going to push through the hunger and go to bed." But I don't do that. If I'm starving at 8 PM, I eat again. I don't like to go to bed starving. That's not the right answer for everybody. Maybe someone else push through. But it's easier for me to push through, after I wake up in the morning, fast longer than it is for me to push through in a day when I've closed my eating window, and now, I'm starving again.  

Melanie Avalon: We talked about this, but I'm the exact same way-- The exact same way. All right. Shall we go on to our next question?  

Gin Stephens: Yes. And this is from Angela, and the subject is: "Processed versus plant-based." She says, "Hi, hello, Melanie and Gin. I am a 33-year-old female who has been experimenting with intermittent fasting since November of 2019. I lost a total of 20 pounds between November and December of 2019 and have over 50 more to go. Then, I slowly went back to my old ways in February, but never fear I'm going to continue IF immediately. It is the only thing I have found that has helped combat my chronic fatigue in addition to weight loss. So, we know that processed foods aren't the best for our bodies and Whole Foods provide more nutrition. My body doesn't do well with most meats. I can have very lean meat and fish. So, I've been looking into incorporating plant-based foods into my diet. My question is kind of threefold. First, if I am eating pre-processed, pre-packaged plant-based foods, is it counterproductive to try to increase nutrition?" It's never counterproductive to try to increase nutrition. I'm just going to say that.  

Melanie Avalon: I agree.  

Gin Stephens: Although, we can talk about the first part in a minute, but it's never counterproductive to increase nutrients. All right. "Second, what should we be looking for so far as no added this in plant-based products? Last, are there any plant-based foods or food brands that you can recommend? Thank you, ladies for all that you do. You bring so much inspiration and information to us all and all I can say is," she's going to love Clean(ish). Angela needs to read Clean(ish), because it's all explained in there. So much detail. But anyway, you get to go first, so, I'll let you talk about it first.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, this is a great question from Angela. This definitely in my opinion touches into something that I see a lot now, especially, with the plant-based food movement, which is where a lot of people are making the dietary choice for health, or environmental, or ethical reasons to go plant-based, which can be really great for the individual depending on the individual's constitution. But there are a lot of like Angela said, you know, pre-processed, pre-packaged plant-based foods that may come with their own array of issues.  

Gin Stephens: Like Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies. I think, they're vegan. [laughs] So, yeah, they call something vegan and you're like, "Oh, it's so healthy." No, it is a Girl Scout Thin Mint cookie.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I mean, think about how many just like of the breakfast cereals on the market are probably technically vegan. Sugar is vegan. Yeah, so, a lot of things. I did a lot of research on this, by the way for brands and stuff, the different thoughts. There is the option of less processed, less pre-packaged plant-based foods. So, you could still be making meat alternatives yourself and I know that might require more time, but once you figure out the system that works for you and how to cook it and what you like and integrate it into your life, I think, the cost benefit of learning how to make food closer to its natural form that you really like long term in the health world will have massive, massive benefits. So, if that's an option, I would definitely go that route. So, that would be things like, if you are eating soy or tofu, getting that more plain and cooking it the way you like or things like mushrooms or-- Did she say, she's vegan or vegetarian?  

Gin Stephens: She just said plant-based. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, she does have lean meat and fish. So, you might be having eggs, and lean meat, and fish. You could still stay in the Whole Foods world and make it work plant-based wise. If you are having more of the pre-processed, pre-packaged plant-based foods, things you would want to look for, it's really, really shocking. If you turn over most of the things in the market and see the ingredients, there's just so much stuff. So, things I would look for are anything you can't pronounce or don't know what it is, that's probably not the best sign. A lot of like gums and carrageenan are added to these foods, and those can be problematic, they can be inflammatory. If it ever says like natural flavors that can be anything, so that's a little bit sketchy.  

Gin Stephens: It could be MSG. They hide that under all sorts of flavor kind of things. 

Melanie Avalon: Something I personally am very concerned with is refined seed oils, and I've done an episode with Dr. Cate Shanahan all on this. If you'd like to learn more, that's at melanieavalon.com/fatburnfix. But that's all about the potential problematic issue of refined added vegetable and seed oils. So, that's vegetable oil and there's like you can remember it because there's three C's three S's, there's probably more but that's a way to remember the main ones. So, it's canola, corn, cottonseed, soy,- 

Gin Stephens: Sunflower. 

Melanie Avalon: -sunflower? Yeah, sunflower. I would be really wary of those in the foods. The ironic thing about it is that, a lot of the vegan and vegetarian foods will actually use these oils because it's a way for them to have less saturated fat, and it works for them, and what they're trying to make the label say. But the problem with these oils is they are highly, highly unstable. So, when they are refined like that and then in these foods, they can really create a lot of inflammation in the body and oxidative issues. So, I would really, really avoid added C in vegetable oils. If you are having soy which is going to be pretty prevalent in the plant-based world, the majority of soy is GMO. So, I would look for organic soy only. My thoughts on soy have been changing. So, I've always sort of historically been on the fence and a little bit confused, and I didn't do a really, really deep dive until pretty recently because I interviewed Dr. Neal Barnard, who is one of the top vegan proponents of all the vegans.  

A lot of listeners probably know who he is because he's in all the documentaries, he has a lot of books. I interviewed him finally, like two weeks ago. So, that episode I think will come out around March or so. He wanted to come on actually for his study about soy. So, ooh, I went deep. I read everything I could find and my takeaway was that-- we've talked about this on a recent show, so I won't go too deep into it. But my takeaway was that, it's probably very context dependent. It probably depends on your gut microbiome, it probably depends on your genetics as to whether or not you benefit. I think, it might depend on your current estrogen burden. But in any case, I think, going the natural route, so, non-GMO, organic soy and/or like fermented soy, which is called tempeh would be the route to go if you go that route. So, yes. So, my suggestion would be to turn over, go to like Whole Foods, and look at all the brands, and turn them over, and see what's in them. I will list some brands that I like.  

So, Primal Kitchen does make some vegan, and like non-dairy condiments and things like that. So, you could check them out. Check out Amy's. If you're sensitive to gluten, that's something that you would want to be looking for. So, any grains or gluten and the products. I like Eden Foods. That's a brand they make some soy milks, and soups, and they're mostly organic, no additives or they might be all organic. A good dairy alternative is coconut milk but it's pretty hard to find coconut milk without gums and carrageenan, but I know they do have one at Trader Joe's and Native Forest is also a brand. If you're going with the vegan milk still, it's like almond milk, it's really hard to find one without additives, but MALK is a brand that doesn't have any problematic ingredients, For the soy, SoyBoy is a brand that I like. They have soy and they have a Tempeh.  

Again, check their ingredients though because some of the different flavors have problematic additives. There's a meat alternative made from jackfruit and Upton's makes an original form that doesn't have any additives. So, that's something that you could try. You can also get organic canned jackfruit. So, that might be something to cook with. Mushrooms, by the way, are also fun things to add and use as meat alternatives. Especially, the really big like portabella mushrooms. I like some of this Dr. Praeger's that they have at Whole Foods, but it's not organic is the only thing. Maybe that's a place to start but I would definitely either way, there's going to be like, if you really want to invest in this, there's going to be a learning curve, where you are going to just need to familiarize yourself with brands, and then also, like I said maybe learn how to make vegan or vegetarian plant-based alternatives yourself in a more whole foods form. 

Gin Stephens: I have a few things to add, although, you've said a lot as usual, which is good. [laughs] You are thorough, that's the word I'm looking for. So, I really think like I said, Angela, you're going to love Clean(ish), because it can get really hard to decide, you know, how perfect do you want to be? That's where the ish comes in. We know for certain but there's a lot of stuff we don't know for certain in the health world. You'll find a study that says one thing, you'll find something else that says something contradictory, but I will pretty much say, Melanie, see if you agree with me here. We know for certain that no one gets healthier by increasing the amount of ultra-processed foods in their diet. Would you say that's pretty much one thing we know for sure?  

Melanie Avalon: No one gets healthier by increasing ultra-processed foods. I don't like to ever say I'm certain about anything.  

Gin Stephens: I know. I don't either. But this is one where I'm pretty certain. 

Melanie Avalon: That is the closest to approaching certain that I can get.  

Gin Stephens: I've never seen a study that implied otherwise, more and more, ever since the term ultra-processed came out, which really hasn't been very long. I talk about this a lot more detail like I said in Clean(ish). We used to just say processed, but that is a misleading term. Because if you shuck an ear of corn and slice it off the cob and cook it, you've just processed it. But if you grind your wheat into flour, you just processed it. So, processing itself is not a bad thing. It's the ultra-processed, that's the problem. Once we got that terminology, it really helped make things clear. You want to eat things that are not ultra-processed when you can. But again, I'm cleanish. Melanie just listed a whole bunch of options that are probably considered to be ultra-processed but still better than other options that are ultra-processed. Feed foods can be organic, and also ultra-processed at the same time. We think that if it says organic on the label, it's a good choice. Those organic seed oils are just as inflammatory to me. I mean, maybe not just as inflammatory, maybe the ones that are not organic or would be less inflammatory, but they are inflammatory as well.  

There's a term that I learned when I was at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition called crowding out. It's a great concept. It really helped me come up with my own personal definition of Clean(ish). You want to focus on high-quality Whole Foods, whether you're looking at the paradigm of plant-based or whether you're going to be paleo. Melanie, you know for sure that as paleo got popular, paleo ultra-processed foods became available, which is the opposite of what paleo was supposed to be.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I was going to say that exactly.  

Gin Stephens: Right. So, we can ruin anything in America or the world by ultra-processing it and it still quote fits the guidelines, but it doesn't at all. I've talked about this before as well when I did the low-fat diets of the 90s, I read the T-Factor Diet and the only takeaway that I took away from that was eat less fat. So, I started eating SpaghettiOs, and SnackWell's, and McDonald's had a fat free Apple muffin, you could drive through and get and you could have a coke with that and the whole thing was fat free. I mean, that is not what the T-Factor book said to do. I went back through it recently and reread it, and he wants you to eat whole foods that are low in fat. That's really what it is. No matter how you're choosing to eat, the more real foods you can fit in there, the better you're going to be, and over time, you'll figure out, what proportion of ultra-processed foods you can allow in there. Melanie, are you zero with ultra-processed foods, would you say? Do you eat any?  

Melanie Avalon: So, in my everyday day-to-day life, I don't have any. When I go through my low carb phases, that's when I'll do the MCT oil which is ultra-processed. Every now and then if I'm having like a crazy celebratory craving, I will get the low carb like keto cake mixes with the least amount of additives. So, they're typically like almond, or coconut flour and erythritol, or monk fruit or stevia. 

Gin Stephens: Okay. So, you're on the continuum. Really close to whole foods all the time, but you still allow the ultra-processed sometimes. And that's your definition of Clean(ish), right?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm.  

Gin Stephens: But I on the other hand, I wouldn't choose something with monk fruit or erythritol, I would use real sugar or coconut palm sugar instead. That's because we each have a different what we want to do. That's the whole in the book, Clean(ish), which you need to order right now, because it's coming out January 4th, which is so very soon. In Clean(ish). It's all about figuring out your own personal definition of how that looks for you and what will you have and what will you not? I talk about in there that, I avoid these oils, I like to stick to organic things, but there's a mayonnaise I love that I grew up with and I don't eat mayonnaise very often. So, if I do need to eat mayonnaise or want to eat mayonnaise, I use this brand. It's probably GMO. I'm sure it is full of funky stuff, but I like it. But I don't need it all the time and I don't eat those oils day-to-day. So, it's just like I said, a matter of figuring out your perfect balance. My diet has more ultra-processed stuff in it than Melanie's, but it's way different than how it looked one, two, three, four, 10 years ago. So, it's a process.  

Like I said, before, that I ate out twice yesterday, I am feeling so puffy today and I know, it's because when I eat out, they use all these things, these inflammatory ingredients I don't use at home. So, I don't feel my best. When I get home tomorrow, I'm going to make something that has very high vegetable content, and I'm going to feel better. And it's just a matter of finding that balance that works for you. The more ultra-processed foods you can eliminate, but still enjoy your life, I really think the better.  

Melanie Avalon: To that point for me with eating out like I've just learned how to order where I'm equally happy with what I'm ordering but then I don't get any of the negative effects because I'm so specific in how I order. For some people, it's worth it to do that and for some people, it's not. So, it's really just a matter of like you said, Gin, what's worth it to you and what makes you happiest in the long run. Have you tried Primal Kitchen's, mayo?  

Gin Stephens: Yes, [laughs] and it's good. It's fine. If I were someone who ate mayonnaise every day or used it a lot, then, I would really think about the brand that I use. I would not want the brand of mayonnaise that I prefer. I'd like Duke's mayonnaise, and I grew up with it, and it is what mayonnaise is supposed to taste like. If I want something, it needs to be Duke's mayonnaise. But I don't eat mayonnaise every day. If I did, I would probably switch to Primal Kitchen. But it's a sometimes thing. So, having a little bit of this once a month or however often, I really only put it on if I'm making pimento cheese, which I don't do hardly ever. [laughs] Maybe at Christmas, I'll make my cranberry cheese or I'm having an egg sandwich which I have, I don't know, not even once a month. So, I'm going to eat it it's going to be Duke's, but I don't eat it very often. I don't think I explained what crowding out was. Did I explain what it was or did I just say it and then go down another rabbit hole? Crowding out is when you focus on high-quality Whole Foods as the main part, and then you crowd out, let's say, I wanted to have some homemade hummus with a few pita chips on the side, and then a big salad or something. So, I'm crowding out those chips. I'm still allowing them but I'm filling up on the good stuff first.  

Melanie Avalon: I love that. I will say speaking to the sweetener stuff, I reserve the right to change my opinion on this but the sweetener, I'm most interested by as far as I think it probably has-- 

Gin Stephens: All right, I'm predicting in my head what you might say, go ahead. 

Melanie: Oh, ooh, ooh, yay. I like this game. I think it probably has the most health benefits, minimum side effects. Allulose, all right, that's not I was going to say. What did you think is?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I was thinking you might would think blackstrap molasses was interesting because it's got so much mineral content.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, or manuka honey. Pay 100 bucks for a tablespoon.  

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Yeah, exactly. Have you looked at blackstrap molasses at all? 

Melanie Avalon: I've seen vaguely at different times. I know, it has certain things in it nutrient wise. The allulose is really interesting because it's becoming more and more popular. I went and read all the studies that I could find on it, and it actually, it has a very beneficial effect on especially for like diabetics on just carb content in general. I'd have to revisit what I was saying but the mechanisms of action are really interesting. I think, I don't want to put up misinformation, but it's something like it either competes with carbs or it seems to have a pretty beneficial effect, and it tastes very similar to sugar, and it acts very similar to sugar.  

Gin Stephens: To be honest, for me, the reason I avoid all those others is, I just don't like the way they taste. I don't like any of them.  

Melanie Avalon: Have you tried allulose?  

Gin Stephens: I haven't tried that one. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's what it is. I think, it's actually a natural like sugar. That's what it is. It's a natural sugar found in certain fruits but we just literally can't metabolize it into carb energy. So, it's getting sugar without getting any sugar.  

Gin Stephens: Well, they said all about the sugar alcohols, all those things and I just don't like them.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. I agree. It's not a sugar alcohol. No, it's an [unintelligible [00:45:58].  

Gin Stephens: Those are the kind of things they said like, "Oh, it's natural, oh, it's still not like--" [laughs] I would love to try it but I just stick to coconut palm sugar is really good. It's got that brown sugar flavor. Have you ever had it?  

Melanie Avalon: Nope. Do I know a fun fact? Do you know the difference between sweet corn and corn?  

Gin Stephens: I do.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, like the variety?  

Gin Stephens: Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh. I just learned this because I'm prepping to interview FARMER LEE JONES. Do you know who he is?  

Gin Stephens: I did not.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I'm so excited. He's like this epic regenerative agriculture farmer. He always wears overalls. That's what he's known for. I think, his farm pioneered microgreens, and they're all about creating really interesting varieties, and species, and using all the parts of the plant, and they're just really cool. But I learned in his book, which is epic. Okay, now, going on to some other tangents.  

Gin Stephens: I would probably love his book. What's it called?  

Melanie Avalon: So, his book is called The Chef's Garden: A Modern Guide to Common and Unusual Vegetables -With Recipes. And it came out in April. It is the most beautiful book and it reminds me--, Gin, it reminds me of you so much like what I was reading it. It's really like, "If Gin were to make a, well, actually--"  

Gin Stephens: All right, I'm going to order it right now.  

Melanie Avalon: It's like if both of us were to make this book because-- 

Gin Stephens: Tell me the name of it, again. 

Melanie Avalon: The Chef's Garden: A Modern Guide to Common and Unusual Vegetables -With Recipes. I got so happy because so his people asked to come on the show and I asked if they could send me like the book, and they sent it, and he signed it with a message to me. It made me so happy. So, I have a signed copy but it's a beautiful book and the reason it reminds me of you is the recipes are-- 

Gin Stephens: I just ordered it.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yay.  

Gin Stephens: It's coming.  

Melanie Avalon: Let me know what you think when you get it. You'll see why when you get it, but the recipes are all there are whole foods and stuff, but they also use sugar and they're not like--  

Gin Stephens: They're Clean(ish) 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It's really an amazing, incredible book. Oh, but I read the whole thing front to cover, which I probably didn't need to do because you will learn so much about every vegetable ever known to mankind.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I can't wait, I'm so excited about that.  

Melanie Avalon: I feel like it should be required reading in a way because the amount of information I learned about, I think, I shared it, did I share about the potato?  

Gin Stephens: I don't think so.  

Melanie Avalon: The fun fact about the potato that I learned from this book?  

Gin Stephens: You said something about corn. First of all, tell me if I'm right. This is what I think like when I said yes, I need the difference and then, I was like, "Maybe, I don't" as I started second guessing myself. This is what I think the differences between sweet corn and corn. Most of the corn they grow is not sweet corn and that is to feed animals. Then, sweet corn is the corn we eat, am I right or is that wrong?  

Melanie Avalon: No.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. That's what I thought. There's something about most of the corn they grow is for animals.  

Melanie Avalon: Most of the corn that we grow is, I think to feed animals.  

Gin Stephens: It's not the kind of corn we eat. It's a different variety of corn. That's not the kind we eat and then the kind we eat I thought was the sweet corn. Okay, so what's the difference?  

Melanie Avalon: So, corn is a grain, sweet corn is a vegetable.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. What?  

Melanie Avalon: I know. It blew my mind.  

Gin Stephens: I don't know about that.  

Melanie Avalon: Do you want hear the potato fact that blew my mind? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, but I've got to look up this thing about corn and sweet corn.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: I'm telling you what Southern Living thinks, I'm right and he is not. I just looked up, Southern Living said, "The variety of corn we enjoy eating is called sweet corn, which does not grow nearly as tall as field corn. Sweet corn has a higher sugar content than cow corn and is picked while immature before the sugar has a chance to turn into starch." So, that is exactly what I thought. So, I don't really know what he's talking about. I'm going to have to read this book and figure it out. Sweet corn and field corn, it's different, but it's who's going to eat it. 

Melanie Avalon: Corn can be considered either a grain or vegetable based on when it is harvested.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, that does make sense. Okay, but It's the variety of corn, sweet corn is a different variety than cow corn, right? So, they do let the kind that they're going to feed to the animals dry in the field, and I guess, that's the difference is when you harvest it. Whether you would consider it a vegetable or if you let it dry, then maybe it would be considered a grain. No, we were both right.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, maybe, that's what he meant like the corn that's fully mature and dry.  

Gin Stephens: We harvest it while it's still considered a vegetable. But if you let it sit in the field, but we don't do that with sweet corn. Sweet corn, we do not let it sit in the field and dry. We harvest it and then we eat it. But the other kind of corn is the kind that is for the animals and they do let it dry in the field. When I looked that up, it was because I was driving around and I'm like, "Why is all the corn looks so bad? Why is it all so dried up?" And then, I searched it, I was like, "Is something wrong with the corn this year?" Then, that's where I learned, "No, that's field corn. They're letting it dry for the animals."  

Melanie Avalon: Okay. So much learned about corn. You're going to love this book. Here's the potato on. Are you ready?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: So, the potato became this massive thing when they discovered-- I don't remember when it was like 1,700s. When they discovered that it had a high nutrition value in Europe, it was like a good food source, basically. And it was the royalty people that figure this out. So, they wanted to have it as like a food source for the European population. What did they do to make the people start all growing and eating potatoes?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: They did something. They use some reverse psychology to make the non-royalties like the peasants start growing corn. Do you have any guesses?  

Gin Stephens: Do you mean, potato?  

Melanie Avalon: Potato. Sorry. To start growing potato.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know. You just have to tell me.  

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I am just going to tell you because I played this game at Christmas with my family and it took a long time for them to guess. So, I'm just going to tell you. They planted potatoes in guarded fields, so that the peasants would think the potatoes were like really special and expensive or something worth getting. So, then the peasant would steal the potatoes, and then they started planting themselves.  

Gin Stephens: Well, joke's on you royal people, because potatoes are amazing.  

Melanie Avalon: No, that's what they wanted to happen.  

Gin Stephens: But I know, I know. I know. But they're so good. They were like, thinking they're just for peasants, like wanting the peasants to eat them.  

Melanie Avalon: They wanted to spread potatoes as a food source in general. So, it was like, how do we-- 

Gin Stephens: But they liked them, too.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. But it was like, "How do we make the peasants start doing this?" So, they made it seem like they were really exclusive.  

Gin Stephens: All they needed to do is just give them a potato and they would have been in. [laughs] He also talks all about the difference between like yams and sweet potatoes. 

Gin Stephens: I've done some reading about that, too. Does he say that yams and sweet potatoes are not the same thing and that yams are--? I think, yams might be in Africa?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Well, I knew they weren't the same thing but I would go down so many rabbit holes before this being like because I'd be like, "How to identify a yam or sweet potato at the supermarket?" He says, "If you're at a normal supermarket, so not--" 

Gin Stephens: It's the sweet potato.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It's a sweet potato. The yams are only ethnic type. 

Gin Stephens: Super specialty. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I can't wait for you to get this book.  

Gin Stephens: I apparently know a lot about food already.  

Melanie Avalon: You're going to love it. He has sections on every single vegetable, and then all the different varieties, and some of them, there'll be like 30 varieties. They'll talk about 30 varieties of tomatoes. It's mind blowing.  

Gin Stephens: And then, it'll make me want to have all those varieties, then, you go to the store and it's just the plain old boring ones.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. There is a farmer's market here in Atlanta called Buford's Farmers Market, and I've gone a few times, and I think, they have basically everything. It's crazy.  

Hi, friends. Winter aka sick season is upon us and we all know that this is the time of year to take extra care to protect ourselves from germs and bacteria. Of course, you can do everything, right? Wash your hands, keep your hands away from your face, carry around some hand sanitizer, but you still get sick. That's why you need to protect your body from the inside, not just the out. And you can do that by building up your immune system with some high quality and high strength probiotics. That's why I'm really excited about P3-OM. P3-OM is a patented probiotic that might be the most effective probiotic ever developed. P3-OM fights bacteria and strengthens immunity. It's basically a germ fighting superhero, but it also helps digestion, speeds up metabolism, and increases energy throughout the day which is way more than you might have thought probiotics could do. And just when I thought P3-OM couldn't get any more powerful, I watched a video which you can see at p3om.com/ifpodcast of the probiotic literally breaking down a piece of steak. After I saw that, I was all in. You guys are going to be so amazed, too. Definitely check out that video.  

And here's some more awesome news. You can get 10% off P3-OM right now by going to p3om.com/ifpodcast and typing in the coupon code iFPODCAST10. And here's the thing. If you order it, and it's not everything you hoped for, BiOptimizers support team will give you all of your money back, no questions asked. So, if you want to protect yourself from whatever bug is floating around this year, and take your digestion to a new level, visit P3, the letter OM dotcom, forward slash, I-F-P-O-D-C-A-S-T to get a 10% discount with the coupon code IFPODCAST10. We'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show.  

Melanie Avalon: That was a tangent. Shall we move on to our next question.  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, we have a question from Julie. The subject is: "How did I get here?" Julie says, "Hello, I started IF in August 2018, 49 years old, 5'2", 134 pounds. I've always been active, walking, yoga, and elliptical weights, workouts. My body mind and lifestyle adapted quickly to IF, a negative self-talk about weight and food finally subsided. I felt healthy free and in eight months, I was 123 pounds. Fast forward to yesterday having not stepped on the scale in months. Now, 51 years old and I weighed in at 136. I maintain clean fast, little alcohol, healthy eating, and 20:4. Please help. Is it age, cortisol? I have read/heard Gin talk about this in relation to COVID-19. ADF is not for me. So, I just try to keep positive, drink more water, almost a gallon daily, eat healthier, etc., but I don't understand how I got here. IF has worked for me and I'm committed to this way of life.  

My weight gain shows in the mirror, my clothes, and my mind. Negative self-talk has returned and I feel like I did pre-IF. Side note: I am in good health, and my doctor supports IF, and the lower weight range for my size. Blood test for my annual physicals were good, no health or thyroid issues. Do you have ideas on supplements or vitamins? Any support is welcome. Thank you." She wants to know if we reply by email or only respond on the podcast, do we give heads up to listeners. Grateful for your expertise and advice. And we do not usually reply via email. Occasionally, we do. Sometimes, emails come through and we just must address something. But normally, it's surprise on the podcast. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, Kate, you got to listen. Hopefully, you'll hear it. So, Julie. We can't answer the why. We can't tell you because you said, is it age? Could be. A lot of people gain weight as they go through menopause and you're right at that exact age for that. Cortisol? Could be. She's referring to a blog post that I put out in 2020 about the pandemic, and stress, and weight gain because all of a sudden, in 2020, people who were maintaining beautifully with intermittent fasting, and had been for a long time started having sudden weight gain. So, we talked about the stress that comes along with the pandemic and we're certainly not over that. [laughs] The stress continues as things continue to like, "Oh, here's a variant." And yeah, the media pumps us full of fear, and we're living in this constant Loki stress state, day after day. So, I would absolutely not minimize the effect of that and I would just say, so, you've gained-- It looks like, you lost 11 pounds initially, and now you're back up the 11+2 more. So, 13 pounds. So, you went down 11 and then you went up 13. So, I know, it's frustrating, but it really could be. It could be a combination of hormones, menopause, and stress that we're living through right now. So, we can't tell you what it is.  

And also, there are no magical supplements and vitamins that we could say, this is what you need. Boy, I wish there were. I'd make that supplement. [laughs] There was a magical supplement that could make us lose the weight, but there isn't. We've been down that road, all of us have, and you buy them and you saw them on the famous TV doctor who had the different episodes about this magical supplement. I bought everything that was on there. Never once did it make me lose magical weight. Sadly, I wish it had. But it could be so many things. I would really suggest, you might need to be someone who does way more frequently. That might be hard to hear, because I'm someone who doesn't weigh at all, and I haven't weighed for a long time. But if I knew that I had gained weight, and I couldn't figure out why, that scale was really good feedback for me when I was trying to lose weight. It really made a difference. And doing my weekly averaging or using something like happy scale, and really being able to see if you can find what's going on. I'm trying to see what she eats. Did she talk about her diet?  

Melanie Avalon: She just says-- I was actually going to talk about that. Yeah, she says, healthy. 

Gin Stephens: Healthy eating is such a big phrase. You know what, what you think is healthy eating, what I think is healthy eating, what Melanie thinks is healthy eating, what Paul Saladino thinks is healthy eating, there are all going to be different definitions. So, there may be some room to improve in your diet, especially, if you're choosing foods that don't work well for you. I could be eating in a way that fits a lot of definitions of healthy eating, but I'm eating too much of it or my body doesn't like those healthy things. My body would like something else. So, it's really time to tweak if-- You haven't done ZOE, yet? You might really enjoy that, ZOE test. I have a blog post about that ginstephens.com/zoe. You've probably heard me and Melanie talk about it. You also might need to switch it up a little bit.  

I know, you said, you like 20:4 with a four-hour eating window. You don't want to do ADF. You said, it's not for you. Although, I will say, the number of people who have said, I didn't think it was for me, and then I tried it, and guess what? I love it. There are a lot of people who say that. So, you might be surprised. But you could do a mild, not really ADF version, where one day, you have 23:1, and then, the next day you have 18:6 or something. You just keep alternating those. That's a very mild up down, up day pattern and see how that goes. That might be enough to get things going. But there're so many things you could try. Unfortunately, though, like I said before, we can't identify the why of the weight gain. We can just point out some suggestions or some ideas of what it might be.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I thought that was great. The healthy eating was actually what I was going to focus in on because I thought it was really interesting that the thing, she asked advice or to adjust the way it is vitamins or supplements, that would be the last, well, not the last thing, but that would not be high on my priority list for addressing weight loss. The foundational things, I believe for addressing weight loss are the actual food that you're eating and when you're eating it.  

Gin Stephens: And you know, that just shows how programmed we are to look for that in a bottle. Because we've been taught here's what you take, and then you will lose the weight, and that's not how it goes. I wish it did.  

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. So, I think the healthy eating, it's really easy to eat what may be healthy eating and maybe healthy eating for you, but healthy eating that will create weight gain. Because if you're eating certain foods that are "healthy," but are promoting fat storage, easily stored as fat and eaten higher than you are burning off every day, then, you're going to gain weight as a necessity of that.  

Gin Stephens: People often think that because we say, don't count calories that we are saying that calories don't count. Calories are a terrible way of measuring what's coming in, what's coming out. But neither Melanie nor I or really anybody that I really trust and follow thinks that you can really just overeat eat, eat, eat, eat, eat and not gain weight. If you eat too much, you will gain weight. So, I'm not saying that's what Julie's doing. But you can overeat in a four-hour window if you're eating like a lot of cheese for example. That's my own little-- [giggles] my nemesis of overeating is usually cheese and dairy products because I love them, but they're easy to overeat.  

Melanie Avalon: And that's an example we're looking at the type of food rather than the calories or even the amount can take care of itself in a way. Because if cheese is a greenlit food for you, you can most likely very easily overeat it and gain weight from it. Same with like nut butters and things like that compared to with, you know, you're like, "Oh, I can have unlimited protein." It's unlikely you're going to eat so much protein that you gain weight if anything. It has high thermogenic effect, if anything, you'd probably get full faster and probably lose weight and while also boosting your metabolism for example. So, I would focus in on that healthy eating, and look at what you're eating, and I would suggest, and I say this a lot, so, I feel like a broken record. But if you're not looking at your macros at all, there's a lot of magic that can happen. You don't have to count calories, you don't have to count even amounts, but if you play around with a macro approach that can work really, really well for a lot of people, and it doesn't have to be forever, but it can be just while you're losing this weight. So, that would be either low carb or low fat, and seeing how that works for you.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's a good suggestion.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. If you'd 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 for today's show will be at ifpodcast.com/episode245. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike and you can follow us on Instagram. I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens. All right. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I guess, I'll just put in one more plug for go ahead and pre-order Clean(ish) if you haven't already.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. 

Gin Stephens: It's coming out really soon and I'm excited. 

Melanie Avalon: Really soon when this airs.  

Gin Stephens: Yes. And even really soon. 

Melanie Avalon: Five or six days, like a week. Like a week after this. 

Gin Stephens: Even really soon like now. It's really soon just in general.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think, it's about a week after when this airs. Already well, we'll put a link to that in the show notes. And this has been absolutely wonderful and I will talk to you next week.  

Gin Stephens: All right, talk to you then. Bye.  

Melanie Avalon: Bye.  

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Gin:
GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Dec 12

Episode 243: Fasted Exercise, Post Surgery Biohacks, Antibiotics, Probiotics, Fermented Foods, Nut Milk, Soy, Veganism, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 243 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:

BIOPTIMIZERS: A Company Whose Mission Is To Fix Your Digestion! Support Your Gut Health With A Patented, Proteolytic, Anti-Viral, Superstar Probiotic, P3OM! Go To p3om.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

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AUDIBLE: This Is Melanie's Well-Known Secret For Reading #Allthebooks #Allthetime! Audible Provides The Largest Selection Of Audiobooks On The Planet, In Every Genre! With Audible, You Can Listen On Any Device, Anytime, Anywhere! Every Month, Members Get 1 Credit To Pick Any Title, Unlimited Audible Originals, Access To Daily News Digests (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, And The Washington Post), Guided Meditation Programs, Audible Sleep, And More! Audible Provides Rollover Credits, Easy Exchanges, Discounts On Titles Beyond Credits, And Audiobooks You'll Keep Forever! For Those With Children, Check Out The Free stories.audible.comGo To audible.com/ifpodcast Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For 60% off your first three months!

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To p3om.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

3:10 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Clean(ish): Eat (Mostly) Clean, Live (Mainly) Clean, and Unlock Your Body's Natural Ability to Self-Clean

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20:45 - GREEN CHEF: Go To Greenchef.Com/Ifpodcast10 And Use Code IFPODCAST10 To Get 10 Free Meals AND Free Shipping!

3:05 - Listener Q&A: Bianca - What Supplements To Take!

INSIDETRACKER: Go To insidetracker.com/melanie And Use The Coupon Code MELANIE25 For 25% Off All Tests Sitewide!

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

Get 10% Off With Coupon Code MelanieAvalon At Platt Wellness Center!

38:45 - Listener Q&A: Paula - Hello Again! Thank You And More Random Qs.

DRY FARM WINES: Natural, Organic, Low Alcohol, Low Sugar Wines, Paleo And Keto Friendly! Go To dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast To Get A Bottle For A Penny!

46:15 - AUDIBLE: Go To Audible.Com/Ifpodcast Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For 60% Off Your First Three Months!

56:20 - Listener Q&A: Brittany - COFFEEEEEE

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 243 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. 

Hi, friends. Winter aka sick season is upon us and we all know that this is the time of year to take extra care to protect ourselves from germs and bacteria. Of course, you can do everything right, wash your hands, keep your hands away from your face, carry around some hand sanitizer, but you still get sick. That's why you need to protect your body from the inside not just the out. And you can do that by building up your immune system with some high quality and high strength probiotics. That's why I'm really excited about P3-OM. P3-OM is a patented probiotic that might be the most effective probiotic ever developed. P3-OM fights bacteria and strengthens immunity. It's basically a germ fighting superhero. But it also helps digestion, it speeds up metabolism, and increases energy throughout the day, which is way more than you might have thought probiotics could do. And just when I thought P3-OM couldn't get any more powerful, I watched a video which you can see at p3om.com/ifpodcast of the probiotic literally breaking down a piece of steak. After I saw that, I was all in. You guys are going to be so amazed, too. Definitely, check out that video.  

Here's some more awesome news. You can get 10% off P3-OM right now by going to p3om.com/ifpodcast and typing in the coupon code IFPODCAST10. And here's the thing. If you order it and it's not everything you hoped for, BiOptimizer support team will give you all of your money back, no questions asked. So, if you want to protect yourself from whatever bug is floating around this year, and take your digestion to a new level, visit p3om.com/ifpodcast to get a 10% discount with the coupon code IFPODCAST10. And we'll put all this information in the show notes. All right now back to the show.  

Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know 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 you know that conventional lipstick for example often test 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 in 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 sort of 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 243 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'm getting super excited. Well, the time, this comes out December 13th, we are just really close to the release of Clean(ish). 

Melanie Avalon: That's very exciting.  

Gin Stephens: It is and so, I have been flushing out my plans for what we're going to do. And we're going to have a book study in the Delay, Don't Deny Community.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, nice.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. So, anybody who's listening, if you would like to take part in that book study, go ahead and preorder now. Even if you don't want to take part in the book study, I'd love you to preorder now. It comes out January 4th, you're going to want to have it. But if you go to ginstephens.com/community, you can join the community. And we're going to be doing the book study right there. Like we're going to be walking our way because Clean(ish) is not the kind of book you sit down and you read the whole book, and then you're like, "All right, I read that book." No, it's like you work through it. It was written by a teacher and it's very teachery. [laughs] So, it's like a step-by-step process. So, we're going to go through the chapters and take our time, we're also going to be having a book study on the Life Lessons Podcast starting January 5th. So, January 4th, preorder now, January 4th is when you'll get the book. January 5th, an episode of Life Lessons will come out, getting us kind of started on the book study, then we'll have every other episode will be about Clean(ish) topics. And then in the DDD community, ginstephens.com/community, we'll be actually having a community book study where we work our way through it and support each other as we become more cleanish.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that is very exciting.  

Gin Stephens: I have so much work to do. [laughs] But it's teacher work and I love it.  

Melanie Avalon: Did you finish recording the audiobook?  

Gin Stephens: Yes. I'm so glad. I love to talk, but I don't love to read my books out loud. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's a lot.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, recording a podcast, love it. Recording an audio book, would rather stab daggers into my eyes. Not really but you know what I mean.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it is. It's a lot.  

Gin Stephens: It's tedious. The word is tedious.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm very excited to read Clean(ish). I haven't read it yet.  

Gin Stephens: I know. I don't want to send you a copy till we have the good ones in. The ones that are out right now that people have the early reader copies. Like the moderators in my group got them and a few people got them, but there's a lot of formatting flaws in the early reader copy, because it was based on a very early version you know, how that works. And so, they didn't have the chapters formatted properly. So, you're reading and then there's something that looks like a heading, but it's really a new chapter title, and you can't really tell. We fixed all that. It's perfect now, but it's just weird in the early reader copies. I like it to be right when people see it.  

Melanie Avalon: I understand. I'm excited to read it.  

Gin Stephens: You need the good copy. So, anyway, January 4, it's coming out.  

Melanie Avalon: Although, depending on, I might listen to the audiobook actually. 

Gin Stephens: This is really a book it's-- I think its-- I know you love to listen to audiobooks. This is one, I mean, I'm not going to say no one get the audiobook. People will enjoy the audiobook, but I think you also want a paperback copy. This is one of those times when just the audio is not quite going to be enough if that makes sense. You want the paperback and you can supplement with the audiobook to listen to the chapter. I mean, it's totally up to you, but this is one you're going to want to look at.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so, I might do the audiobook and then--  

Gin Stephens: I'll make sure you get a copy of the final. You do not have to buy one. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness. Well, also, preorder to support. Let me write that down.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I appreciate that. That's really nice of you, preorder the audible then if you think you want that.  

Melanie Avalon: I will. Oh, perfect. Yeah, that's what I'll do.  

Gin Stephens: You can use an Audible credit. Oh, my God, Audible is sponsoring this episode.  

Melanie Avalon: Are they really?  

Gin Stephens: I didn't even know but yes. [laughs] There'll be an ad coming later everyone at some point.  

Melanie Avalon: Listen to the Audible ad.  

Gin Stephens: But yes. So, you can use one of your Audible credits for Clean(ish). But you also are going to want the paperback for Clean(ish) just-- Like I said, it's not like Fast. Feast. Repeat., I feel like a lot of people would like to have the paperback for that one, but the Audible is enough if you're a really good listener. But for Clean(ish), I think you're going to want both. Not just because I'm trying to sell you two books, I'm not. 

Melanie Avalon: I understand exactly what you're saying. Some books, just because of the formatting and the content, they just need that print version for the full experience.  

Gin Stephens: Yes, you got it. So, anyway, I'm very excited about the book coming out, and I really hope people love it. I want people to really understand the 'ish' part. Because I know that when people read it, they're going to be wanting to do everything 100%. But it's the 'ish' that makes it doable. Because we can't do everything on day one. I don't do everything. I'm ish, cleanish. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm very excited. So, for listeners, we'll put links in the show notes to all of those things. And the show notes will be at ifpodcast.com/episode243 

Gin Stephens: So, what's up with you? Tell me. 

Melanie Avalon: Can I tell you about my serrapeptase launch?  

Gin Stephens: I was knowing you would and excited about it. People haven't gotten it though, have they?  

Melanie Avalon: Some have.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, ooh, that's so exciting.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. We haven't talked since then. I was going to tell you but I was like, I'll just wait and tell you on the show. So, then, it's not repetitive. So, well, I have learned so much about so much [laughs] very short amount of time. So, as listeners are likely familiar, I released my first supplement, which is serrapeptase that we've been talking about for years on this show. Since, almost day one of the show, we've been talking about it. It's an enzyme created by the Japanese silkworm. You take it in the fasted state, it goes into your bloodstream, and it breaks down potentially problematic proteins, so, it can help things like allergies, and inflammation, and fibroids, and it helps with wound healing, and it may reduce cholesterol, and it can breakdown amyloid plaque, it just does so many things.  

Gin Stephens: And I tell you, I actually saw something about it the other day in the scheme of like COVID.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, there is a study about that, that I am not allowed to talk about.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, I just mentioned it, but I saw something about that because you know, you got to be really careful. You can't say you know anything about COVID but I saw it, and it made me think "Ooh, maybe I should take serrapeptase." 

Melanie Avalon: There's a really good study about serrapeptase and COVID. It's funny though, working with the company that I work with. We just want to be super careful. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Can't make any claims about COVID. But people can read the study themselves.  

Melanie Avalon: I have an epic blog post about it on my website. So, if you go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptasescience, that's my original blog post that I wrote with a deep dive into the science, and it does have that study referenced. I was doing a shorter, modified version for the supplement website, which is avalonx.us. And I was talking with my partner and he was like, "You got to take out everything COVID." So, I still had it in the references. He's like, "Nope, [laughs] take it out of there." He's like, "Nothing on the site." Yes, if you want the full version, go to the melanieavalon.com. But in any case, things I have learned, so, I really wanted to do a midnight release because midnight releases are so exciting. It reminds me of, what things come out at midnight? Like Taylor Swift's music or book releases, Harry Potter. So, I want to do it for the excitement, nothing to do with my sleep cycle being a night person. So, I got so many comments from people saying that, a midnight release was really only for the night people. Like that it was wasn't fair for morning people. So, that was a lesson learned that I don't know, to be wary of that.  

Then, so, the day of the release, we realized there was something wrong in the website that I had created. Again, avalonx.us. So, they decided-- the company I work with, MD Logic, they decided to rebuild my entire website themselves, which was insane and brilliant and I'm so grateful. But so, they rebuilt all of it to fix that error. It went live beyond my control around like 11 instead of midnight. Once it did people started ordering because I guess they were checking, so, I was like, "Oh, well, people have been upset that it's a midnight release, so I'll just go ahead and announce it since it's up." So, I sent an email and I announced that it was up early, but then people got mad because they had set their alarm clocks for midnight, and they were like, "Why did you release it early? You said it was midnight." So, I learned so much. 

Gin Stephens: Well, and also, some things are out of our control because when you're releasing something new, it sometimes just happens. You just don't know how long it's going to take.  

Melanie Avalon: The site was going to go up at midnight, but then it went up early. I was trying to make people happy because I received feedback.  

Gin Stephens: I know. We try so hard.  

Melanie Avalon: I just want to make everybody happy. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: Impossible. I've learned impossible through moving the community, we had the first one, the DDD social network, and the platform ended up being unacceptable. So, instead of using the whole--, we spent tens of thousands of dollars on that platform. So, for it to be unacceptable, we just abandoned it because that was not okay for the community. So, we lost money on that part of it, but anyway, we moved everybody. But no matter how hard we tried to move everybody in a way that made them all happy, there were people mad at me. And I'm like, "I just want you to know, I'm doing the best I can." Because the alternative would have been just to stay there and suffer through it being awful till the year was up but we didn't want to do that. So, no solution was perfect. That's what I'm trying to say with that story. No solution is perfect, you're just do the best you can, and if people get mad, and can't roll with it, there's nothing you can do. 

Melanie Avalon: The reason people were so eager was, I was pitching that it would probably sell out which I-- Oh, it was such a moment because I just really had no idea like would it sell out, but I thought it might, but I just didn't know how it was going to go, and it went so well. [giggles] So, it sold out-- the first run, sold out in less than eight hours. So, there was a big spike at around midnight, and then there was a big spike in the morning, but that's what I'm telling people.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, well, so the people, when I went early, it's not like people missed it.  

Melanie Avalon: But the first 300 bottles were super discounted. So, I think, yeah. 

Gin Stephens: Well, those super fans who were checking early, [laughs] they got lucky. That's what I think. Sorry, if the super fans just-- [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: So, there was about two hours where it said it was out of stock on the website, and that's when they were-- at MD Logic, they were trying to figure out if they could place another order. They were trying to forget the logistics of the second run. So, there was like a two-hour period where people were checking and thought that it was sold out and that they had missed it. So, I had to do like damage control, and then two hours later it was available for the second run to preorder. I realized, like, in my messaging, I said, "You can now preorder the second run, which would ship in December," but people thought that they couldn't order until December. I've just learned a lot about clarity. But in any case, the takeaway is that, it went so well, and you can order it now. You can preorder it. The people who have ordered, although, when this comes out, this will be a little bit older news, but people who ordered that first run, by the time this comes out there's should have shipped. They probably will have received it. And then people who are ordering from the current run assuming, it's not sold out. That is probably shipping around mid-December. So, I think when this, because this episode comes out mid-December, right?  

Gin Stephens: Yep, December 13th.  

Melanie Avalon: So, it should be shipping around that time. People listening right now, their orders should be shipping if they had already ordered at the second run. I'm just so grateful like I've just been walking around in the state of happiness, and gratitude, and excitement for a few reasons, oh, my God, I will start crying. Okay. [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: I get it. Look, when I was reading a section of Clean(ish) out loud where I talked about Cal, and his wife Kate, I started crying while I was reading the audiobook. I'm like, "I've got to read that again because now I'm crying." [laughs] We get emotional about stuff. I get it.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm just so grateful because this is something I've been wanting to do for so long, and the guy I work with, Scott at the company, we just really, really are on the same page, and understand each other, and it's just like the most beautiful power team. I'm so happy about how the product turned out, the serrapeptase. I get no GI distress with it, which is something that a lot of people experience. I've been noticing so many benefits from it. It's just really, really incredible, and amazing, and I'm so excited that everybody ordered, and that it sold out so fast, because I was so nervous about-- I really wanted to like, I guess, "perform” because I was working with this company, and I really wanted them to see that my audience really was interested.  

Gin Stephens: Well, because imagine if you had released it, and put it out, and you sold like five bottles.  

Melanie Avalon: My brother texted the next morning and was like, "How did it go?" I was like, "We sold out in less than eight hours." Then my mom was like, "Oh, good." She was like, "I was super worried that nobody was going to buy it." I was like, "Mom?" [laughs] She said, she said-- she said when my brother texted that she was like, "Oh, no. Don't ask that." But now I'm just really thrilled because so that serrapeptase now should be available ongoing. You shouldn't have to worry about it going out of stock, because hopefully we'll be on top of it. Now, we're developing my second one. I know probably the next five ones that I want to do because now, all the supplements I'm currently taking I want to make my own version because then I can really feel good about all of it, and then, I can have something I can really recommend to people. So, I'm really excited. So, the second one, I'm not going to say what it is, but I will say, it's something that we talked about a lot on this podcast, and people asked me for my recommended brand a lot.  

Gin Stephens: All right, does it start with M?  

Melanie Avalon: No.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, well then, I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: I'll tell you off air.  

Gin Stephens: So, yes.  

Melanie Avalon: So, that was a long story, but I'm just so excited and listeners I would love, love, love, love to hear your experience with my brand specifically. And so, you can get it at avalonx.us. Some people have received their bottles and they're posting pictures of themselves with the bottles in the group and it makes me so happy.  

Gin Stephens: I know. That's how I feel when someone's holding Clean(ish). Like someone that's gotten the early reader copies, one of my moderators, or it just makes me really excited to see.  

Melanie Avalon: It's exciting to see, it's like your dreams manifested in a physical form.  

Gin Stephens: It's right because it comes out of your head, and then you make it happen, and then, yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: The bottle like holding it like it's everything I could want. The way it looks, the actual product, I'm very excited.  

Gin Stephens: I'm so excited. Well, job well done.  

Melanie Avalon: Thank you. You, too.  

Gin Stephens: Thank you.  

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Melanie Avalon: Long intro. Shall we jump into some questions?  

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, the first question actually relates to what we were just talking about and I thought it would might be something good to clarify, especially, after telling you guys my whole story about my supplement launch. So, this comes from Bianca and the subject is: "What supplements to take! And Bianca says, "Hi. I always love hearing the information you ladies have to share. Sometimes I hear about new health trends, but I never jump on it until you guys have done your research and share it on the show. So, thank you for being a reliable source of information that I can trust to objectively evaluate all the new health packs. So, my question is this. What supplements do I need to take if I am generally healthy? I know, Melanie, you are obsessed with so many things, lol. But what are the supplements that I absolutely need to take? Do you ever suggest a multivitamin? I am 45 years old and I have to lose 30 to 40 pounds. I do take meds for an underactive thyroid. I could always use more energy or a mood booster, especially, once a month when I get my period. I don't get reflux or constipated." I just want to say, "I'm very jealous of you, Bianca."  

She says, "I don't get brain fog or anxious. My knees hurt a little from running but it seems like normal aging. I currently take ginkgo biloba, fish oil, and vitamin C. After binge hearing your shows, I suddenly feel the need to drink apple cider vinegar, chlorophyll, magnesium shots, serrapeptase?" And then she says, "(silkworm stuff and CBD oil)." Should I-- "For someone like me that has no specific complaints or ailments, would we need to supplement anything to our diet?" Gin, what do you take on a regular basis? Since you and I are closer in age perhaps you could share with me what you'd like to take. I also want to say, how much I appreciate the two different experiences.  

Gin Stephens: All right, well, I'm glad to answer this. But first I want to say one thing. I have realized that supplements are incredibly personal. What I take might not be right for you. Here's an example of that. One of my friends was taking some supplements that she said that changed her life. It's actually my friend, Sheri that cohosts Life Lessons with me. I'm like, "Oh, well I need to take that supplement that changed your life." So, I started taking it. I can't remember what it was. This is a couple of years ago maybe and I started getting this crazy anxiety and weirdness, and I'm like, "Could this be the supplements, I looked it up?" Yes. [laughs] She takes it. She has like a different genetic profile than me and it works for someone with her, whatever genetic, something or other that I don't have. So, I don't need that supplement. If you don't need it and you take it, it can lead anxiety. So, there are very few supplements that I would consider to be universal. Like serrapeptase for example, I took it for a while for a targeted reason. I had fibroids, I do think that it helped. I do think it has broad benefits for a lot of people, but I'm very keep it simple when it comes to supplements.  

I take magnesium every single day and I have for years. It helps me to sleep. I really notice a difference if I forget it. I did change my brand over the years. Right now, I'm doing BiOptimizers, and I think the brand I used to take changed their formulation because it stopped being effective for me. I think I wasn't absorbing it, whatever. So, it's really important to find a brand or something that works really well for you. So, I take that. As far as multivitamins go, there's a brand called Ritual that sponsors IF Stories and I do take that one, ritual.com/ifstories. It's really minimalist and clean. So, as far as like vitamins go, they really are transparent with their ingredients. As far as other supplements like as needed basis, like I had a little touch of a flu a few weeks ago. So, I supplemented with things that are known to boost the immune system, zinc, quercetin, C and D. But I just did that for that targeted period of time where I needed a little more immune system support, I felt. So, that's really it.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, we are on very similar pages, and I think it's funny, because I think people might assume that I am about all the supplements all the time, and I'm really not. I'm actually pretty minimalist myself with supplements. Everything that you said, Gin about us being unique, and I'm all about the actually the minimal effective dose, because I went through a period where I was taking all the supplements and I got really overwhelmed with that. It's really hard to know what's doing what. So, I'm all about being very specific. There's a word being very, just puts the word.  

Gin Stephens: Intentional?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, intentional with what you're taking. So, the serrapeptase for example, I think, it has just such broad ranging benefits kind of like Gin mentioned that I think, most people can benefit from it in some capacity. So, it's one of the reasons I wanted to make it for my first one is, it is one of the only supplements that I actually have been taking consistently every day for years.  

Gin Stephens: And honestly, one reason I stopped was because I got spooked about things on Amazon, and not sure what brand to buy, and I was like, "Well, never mind." [laughs] I might would take a Melanie Avalon brand version.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. After developing it now, people were asking in the meantime until yours is available, which one should I order and I was like, "Honestly, I can't recommend any of them now." 

Gin Stephens: Once you understand, yeah, yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: So, that's an example of one that I think most people can probably benefit from it in some capacity. Beyond that, so, Gin mentioned vitamin D, that's one where I think people really should be getting their blood levels tested for vitamin D, because I think, it's super important for so many things, and for immunity, and a lot of people are low. 

Gin Stephens: But you can't know unless you get it tested and that really helps you dial in what you need.  

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. So, I love InsideTracker because they always test vitamin D, but your conventional doctor can run it as well. But you probably have to ask because most doctors aren't just randomly testing it. I think when it comes to things like digestive enzymes and HCl, that would be case by case basis of, do you have digestive issues and do those help you? They helped me so much but if you don't have digestive issues, if you're not experiencing that, I wouldn't worry about it and it sounds like Bianca, she doesn't experience digestive-- Well she talks about not getting reflux or constipated.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I don't take any kind of digestive support stuff, zero.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm jealous. It's a gamechanger for me taking the digestive support. Then, so, vitamin C, I actually don't recommend that, especially, if you're taking it while fasted. I don't recommend it as like a daily supplement while fasted.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. That's also important. Supplements, not all supplements are great during the fast but some are. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think there are studies on this taking vitamin C can actually be counterproductive for your body's endogenous production of antioxidants. So, I don't really recommend taking vitamin C is like a thing. But if you get sick for example like Gin said that might be a case where you'd want to high dose vitamin C. Fish oil, I'm perpetually on the fence about. I go back and forth. I'll listen to one person being like never take fish oil and then I'll listen to Rhonda Patrick doing an episode, I'm like, "Oh, everybody should be taking fish oil." But I know one thing. I think, most of them are often rancid. 

Gin Stephens: Right. Quality is so-- The problem with supplements, that's why I'm so skeptical of like, I have a section in Clean(ish) where I talk about, like she said, she takes ginkgo biloba, and I have a whole section on Clean(ish) where I talk about a study they did where it like, wasn't even in there. I mean, it was crazy.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's crazy. Actually, speaking of, because I've been getting questions about what testing we do. So, for my serrapeptase for example, it's tested for four different things, pre and post production. So, when they're creating the supplement they test it for toxins, for purity, for active ingredient, for-- It's on the website. I can put a link to in the show notes. But basically, that it is what it says it is that it is effective, and then they do a separate test just on the serrapeptase because they have to do an enzyme test to make sure the enzyme is active, and then they do a batch test, which is where with a finished product, they randomly pull jars and tests that it's still everything that it says it is. 

Gin Stephens: Like quality control-- random quality control stuff, that makes sense.  

Melanie Avalon: So, I think that is so important and minor tested for heavy metals and mold which is so, so huge to me. 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you don't want to be putting that in. [laughs] We want to be taken out the bad stuff not putting more bad in. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, I just think this is all so, so important. The fish oil for example, I shudder thinking about it now, like we often order that off of Amazon, and Amazon, especially, during the summer are really, really hot warehouses. I just would not order fish oil off of Amazon. It is probably been sitting, especially, in the hot months.  

Gin Stephens: Well, then you have to look at, that's not the only place but the warehouse or a truck. I mean, it's hard to know about anything. Honestly, who knows how it got to the store. So, when you really start thinking about supplements, you start going down the rabbit hole of-- That's why I take so few. 

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. And even serrapeptase is temperature sensitive. So, that's another case where you'd want to be buying direct from somewhere where it's been climate controlled. So, if I ever do a fish oil in the future, I think, it would need to be a little bit down the line because I think it's going to be super expensive. Because I want to do all the criteria to keep it cold shipping and all of that. That's probably going to be like down the line if I do a fish oil. But I'm just looking at the other things she said. Interesting that from the show, she thinks she should drink apple cider vinegar. I guess we talked about taking it like before eating maybe. Chlorophyll, I do take chlorophyll. It's good for iron levels, but I take that with my food. Magnesium, Gin said, she benefits from, CBD is something that has helped me so much, but I realize that people respond differently to CBD.  

Gin Stephens: They really do. Yeah, one of my family members responds great to it like amazing. It helps with mood and for me though, it made me-- I took it for a while because it feels [unintelligible [00:32:55] and I took it and I tried to find my right dose but basically, I never found a dose that made me feel like better, different like it was doing anything. Does that make sense? So, I stopped taking it. But I believe in it because I've seen it make a difference. So, I'm not like anti-CBD. I think it is powerful and amazing. But you need to meet with the people and they will talk you through it. If there's a right dose for you, they'll help you find it. But the answer might be, you don't need that.  

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. For me, it's a game changer. Like a game changer. It makes me sad because they run whitelisted ads through my Facebook account. So, basically like you might be on Facebook, and you'll see a sponsored ad for Feals from my account. I mean, CBD is such a touchy topic. So, a lot of comments are very abrasive and intense and I'm like, "I shouldn't be like I'm not making this up. Like this supplement changes my life."  

Gin Stephens: No, I've really seen it make an amazing difference in other people. I've seen it firsthand with my eyes in my house. But for me, the magnesium helps me sleep, and I don't have anything that I need help with that. I don't know. Whatever it does in your brain, my brain is okay with. I've got other things in my brain that might need you know like the magnesium, but we're also different. I really think it's the thing that, like now, I pretty much sleep through the night all the time. I think it took a while of finding my dose and doing it consistently, but I take it every single night, and I think it has modulated my entire cannabinoid system. 

Gin Stephens: That's good. You know what changed mine is changing my magnesium. Honestly, I am sleeping great, and I am even drinking a little bit more alcohol, and it's making a huge difference. It's not making me wake up. After if I have like a glass of wine, I don't instantly wake up not able to sleep like I had been for so long. It could, maybe, my body is calmed down after going through menopause, that could be it, because some people told me they had trouble with one. While they were going through menopause then it got better, but I really think it's changing my magnesium that made a difference. But it really, once you find what works for your body, huge difference.  

Melanie Avalon: We do have a discount for Feals which is I think one of our best offers and it's feals.com/ifpodcast. It changes around, but it's usually 40% to 50% off somewhere in there. 

Gin Stephens: Yes. 

Melanie Avalon: But like Gin said, like I've said, it's really just a matter of individuality. Like another one I take every single day is berberine. I've seen wearing a CGM that that really does really nice things for my blood sugar levels. It actually really helps my digestive issues as well, which I didn't anticipate. But that's something that I just really like in my proverbial and real cabinet. That'd be something where I think if you've done a CGM, or you've taken blood tests, and you've seen high blood sugar levels, that might be something to play with. But yeah, we could say a lot more about supplements. But something else I will suggest is not trying multiple supplements at one time, because then like new ones--  

Gin Stephens: Don't change everything up. Think of it as a one at a time tweaking kind of thing. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Oh, another one I think a lot of people can benefit from in general is NR and NMN, which are the NAD precursors. But that's another one that I really want to do one, but it's also going to need to be down the line because that is another supplement that needs to be cold, and it's light sensitive, and they just don't really talk about that. So, that's something that I would want to-- cold ship for example. I've so many plans. But yeah, hopefully, that was helpful.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think it was. There's just so much confusion about supplements. And it's because again, we're all different. So, when my friend said, "Take this one, it's--" or she said, "I take this one." She didn't tell me to take it. She said, "I take this, it's changed my life." I'm like, "Well, I'm going to change my life, and it made me worse and bad and awful." Then I was like, "Well, I've never going to just take something because someone said they take it again."  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Another one I do think a lot of people might benefit from is depending on what their issues are as progesterone. I'll be airing an episode, I think, in January with Dr. Michael Platt, and he pretty much thinks that progesterone can fix all ailments for everybody all the time, which I don't know if it's that intense, but I personally have been taking it, and it's radically helped my sister, got rid of her PMDD. I can put a link in the show notes. I have a discount code for them.  

Gin Stephens: That's another one, I would recommend having working with a doctor who's skilled in that and testing your levels. Dr. Anna Cabeca always says, "Test, don't guess" [laughs] which I like. Just because you don't know what you need.  

Melanie Avalon: He makes the argument that with progesterone, there's not really a issue with-- 

Gin Stephens: Taking too much.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that like, basically, if you have any sort of issue that might be related which really, he thinks is almost everything. You can start taking it and you'll see pretty fast if it's helping.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, well, that's interesting. So, he has his own kind of it.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, and it's amazing.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, well, send me that info. I might look at that.  

Melanie Avalon: I bumped up his episode earlier than it should have been released just because I want to tell everybody about it. And we just got the discount code. So, I will put a link in the show notes, too. I think it's like a 10% off code. Yeah, that's the one. I said this multiple times, but my sister has had PMDD for 10 years, and they got rid of it in a week.  

Gin Stephens: All right, shall we move on to our next question from Paula?  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, and she has a few different questions.  

Gin Stephens: She does. Paula says, "Hello, again. Thank you" and more random questions. You want just take them one at a time? 

Melanie Avalon: Sure.  

Gin Stephens: She says, "Gin and Melanie, thank you for answering my questions on the podcast. You're my Monday workout buddies and I am a fan." I love that. People will often tell me they love to walk and listen to the podcast or my other podcast. I'm sure people tell you that, too. I just I love it. It's like we're regular and we're in their head.  

Melanie Avalon: I know. Few DM me on Instagram or few reach out to me on Facebook groups, I really try to engage with everybody who reaches out to me. It's getting hard. But I do try to and people often say, they feel like they know me and I know that feeling because I listened to podcasts and I feel like I know the people, although, now, I often do know them.  

Gin Stephens: Well, that's funny. Well, here's the thing is that we are just really ourselves. I mean, I don't know how to be any other way. Love me or hate me, this is who I am.  

Melanie Avalon: And I've been thinking about that because so, my Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, it's me but it's like interview Melanie. It's like Melanie having an intense conversation with an expert, but this is just like me.  

Gin Stephens: This is us. And you know what? On Intermittent Fasting Stories, I'm able to really be myself, too. Just because it's like me having coffee with a friend is how it feels. I kind of like this one and on Life Lessons. So, anyone who listens to all my podcasts, it's exactly how I am. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I can attest to that.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. All right, so, anyways, she says, "A few more random questions. Number one, I exercise fasted like a lot of people in the IF community, has anyone ever researched if exercising fasted would be equal to an extra hour or two of fasting. For example, I close my window at 9 PM, exercise from 6 AM to 7:30 AM, and only open my window at 3:30 PM. Would that mean that I fasted more than 18 and a half hours?" No. [laughs] Sorry, I had to just answer that. Now, Melanie's going to give a longer answer.  

Melanie Avalon: I knew you were going to say, no.  

Gin Stephens: You knew I was going to say no? Well, maybe because you didn't fast more.  

Melanie Avalon: I was like, "Wait for it." [laughs]  

Gin Stephens: You fasted for 18 and a half. That's how much you fasted. But it's a lot more subtle than just-- Here's what happens when you fast 18 and a half hours every single day, all things being equaled. That's not the case. So, 18 and a half might not be equal to 18 and a half. 

Melanie Avalon: Right. So, no, you did not fast more than 18 and a half hours. But I think the question that she's getting at which is actually a very good question. It's something definitely worth thinking about. The processes that happen, or the actions that transpire, or things that happen when you're fasting can also be instigated, or upregulated, or increased, enhanced by exercise. So, there would be fat burning, there would be autophagy. So, it's a little bit of a different question but basically, I do think, if you do exercise while fasted, the benefits that you were trying to achieve from fasting, you might get those same benefits or you might get more of those benefits even, but having fasted less. 

Gin Stephens: Right. Like, think of the exponential curve. We all have seen a graph. You know, think of a graph with a straight line going just up straight. That's not what I'm talking about. An exponential curve is when it starts off sloping gently and then the slope gets higher, I think, by adding exercise, it would make that slope go up higher, like for the things that are happening in your body. Does that make sense?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Especially, I just mentioned them but depending on the exercise you're doing, that it might deplete your glycogen stores faster or it might burn more fat, and then the autophagy thing I think is huge, because there's a lot of studies on exercise increasing autophagy, and it does. It's one of the best ways to do it. So, yeah. You might get the benefits that you're trying to get potentially more so and potentially with less fasting.  

Gin Stephens: Yep. All right. I'm just going to say the exact same thing, yes. I agree with all of that. All right, number two. "I love wine, but cannot eat any sugar with that or I throw up. Actually, any mix of alcohol and sugar thoughts." Well, I've got a thought there. Don't do that. [laughs] Sorry. I just can't control myself today. I'm feeling super punchy.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm wondering like, "Does she just drink wine and then throws up?"  

Gin Stephens: Well, she said, if she has wine with sugar, it makes her throw up.  

Melanie Avalon: Cannot eat any sugar with it. Okay.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Did I read it weird?  

Melanie Avalon: No, no, I'm just thinking about-- because she says, a mix of alcohol and sugar, I've thinking like, "Oh, is it like cocktails that she throws up?" But then she says like, eat.  

Gin Stephens: Well, anything like, I think cocktails or having alcohol with sugar, either.  

Melanie Avalon: I don't know. It could be something about your liver health and trying to process all the stuff. I don't know. I would just say what Gin said, don't do that.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Honestly, that's just your body saying, "I don't like this." So, you just going to have to stick to like a Dry Farm Wine that it that has low sugar itself, and don't eat sugar with it, and don't have sugary cocktails. Because I wouldn't want to throw up. So, I wouldn't do that. I don't think there's any way to fix it. Here's the thing you can do to stop that. You just can't do it.  

Melanie Avalon: Like I'm wondering if she gets nauseous. Is it like at the end of the night type thing or is it like she has it and then gets nauseous?  

Gin Stephens: That's your body sending you a powerful signal not to do that.  

Melanie Avalon: But that is one reason like Gin mentioned that, we love Dry Farm Wines because they actually-- I love, love, love. They put on the back of the bottle, the sugar content, which is so cool.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I just ordered Chad's Christmas present. We had paused our subscription for a while because I was barely drinking. [laughs] So, I just got him a year's subscription to Dry Farm Wines. He likes the red and I just drink a tiny bit of red like a Melanie dose of red and I'm okay, but that's what I got him.  

Melanie Avalon: The old Melanie dose?  

Gin Stephens: The old Melanie dose.  

Melanie Avalon: Gin is referring to when I was having a sip of wine every night.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, okay, I have more than that. But when he has one but it's still a very small amount of glass. We have tiny little wine glasses and they put a little bit in there and that's enough.  

Melanie Avalon: Nice.  

Gin Stephens: Nothing like I'm not getting a buzz or anything, but he likes to have red wine with dinner here and there. So, that's his Christmas present.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm literally contemplating. I'm going to a wedding on Friday. I'm like, "Can I bring a bottle of Dry Farm Wines?"  

Gin Stephens: For yourself?  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. 

Gin Stephens: I wouldn't. Not to a wedding. I would not.  

Melanie Avalon: I could like slip it to the bartender be like, "Can you just pour mine from this one?"  

Gin Stephens: No, I would not do that. Thumbs down on that idea. Just don't drink at all if you are worried. Look, the reason I say that is because when I was drinking less, especially, the past year, I realized I have just as much fun with zero alcohol like honestly.  

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm definitely going to be drinking. 

Gin Stephens: Do not bring your own wine to a wedding.  

Melanie Avalon: I already like joked about it with the bride. She's like, "Are you going to bring Dry Farm Wines?" I'm like, "Maybe."  

Gin Stephens: Well, I mean, if she's like, that's cool. I guess, it depends on your comfort level with the guests, the other guests. 

Melanie Avalon: I'll probably just drink whatever they have. Our link for Dry Farm Wines is dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast, gets you a bottle for a penny.  

Today's episode is sponsored by Audible. Audible is excited to offer members a new way to explore their interests with the new Plus Catalogue. This holiday season will certainly be more special than last. It's finally time to gather together and exchange thoughtful gifts with the people you care about. In the midst of all the holiday excitement, think about giving yourself the gift of an Audible membership. Now is the absolute best time to do it with a special offer of 60% off your first three months. With Audible, you can listen to more of whatever you're into because Audible has it all. An unbeatable selection of audiobooks, tons of binge worthy podcasts, and exclusive originals, all available to download or stream. Here's what you get. As an Audible member, you can choose one title a month. Like the latest bestseller or hottest new release, yours to keep forever. You can listen to Melanie's book, What When Wine or either of my books, Delay, Don't Deny or Fast. Feast. Repeat., and coming January 4th, you can listen to Clean(ish) 

Here's the best part. You also get full access to Audible's streaming library, the Plus Catalogue, discover your next podcast obsession, check that audiobook off your bucket list, or get lost in a world of original content from celebrity creators, bestselling authors, and leading experts. The kind of stuff you can't hear anywhere else, stream all you want, as much as you want no matter where you're going, or what you're doing this holiday season, you'll always have just the right thing to listen to at your fingertips. Now that I'm doing a lot of driving to the beach and back, Audible is the perfect companion for each trip. There's so much to choose from that I will never be done finding great options. Right now, for a limited time, save 60% on your first three months of Audible. That's only $5.95 a month. Give yourself the gift of listening. For more, go to audible.com/ifpodcast, that's audible.com/ifpodcast or you can text IF Podcast to 500-500 for 60% off your first three months. That's definitely a gift you'll love to give yourself. And now back to the show. 

Melanie Avalon: All right, number three.  

Gin Stephens: Yes. "I'm having surgery elective cosmetic, any supplements that would speed up my recovery." 

Melanie Avalon: So, when I had surgery, I thought I was dying and I was just wrecked. It was when I had my nose surgery. It could have been a coincidence. But I started high, high, high dosing NR and NMN, and I started feeling better the next day.  

Gin Stephens: I don't even know what that is.  

Melanie Avalon: Nicotinamide riboside, probably saying that wrong, NR and nicotinamide mononucleotide, NMN. 

Gin Stephens: Can I tell you something about that real quick?  

Melanie Avalon: Uh-huh.  

Gin Stephens: When I was reading Clean(ish), there are so many words in there that I had no idea how to say like when I'm talking about chemicals, and I had to say them. So, every time the director would look them up, and then I would try to say it, and then, she's like, "That was not right," and I would try again as like, "This is too hard, who wrote this." "Oh, yeah, me."  

Melanie Avalon: I read especially with that subject. You probably had a lot of--  

Gin Stephens: Well, I did because chemicals, and stuff, and so, anyone who's listening to Clean(ish), if I sound really stupid saying something wrong, it's because there's a lot of words, a lot of words. Anyway.  

Melanie Avalon: The one I can never remember is phthalates. 

Gin Stephens: Phthalates, I got that one.  

Melanie Avalon: Because it's like ph-tha-thalates. 

Gin Stephens: I can't say athe-roscle-rosis. Atherosclerosis like my tongue won't do it.  

Melanie Avalon: I cannot say that word.  

Gin Stephens: I can't say it. She'll say it. I can't. My tongue doesn't do that. They need to change that word. 

Melanie Avalon: They do. No, I remember because when I was recording some audiobook, they had that in a lot, that word. 

Gin Stephens: My tongue will-- athero-- I can't do it. I don't know.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I can't either. Yeah, same page. So, NR and NMN are precursors to NAD which is it regulates your body's metabolism of energy. So, it's super important for turning food into energy for your cells producing energy. It's just really, really important. And NAD levels decline as we age, so, supplementing NR and NMN can boost your NAD levels. I take it currently every day like a smaller dose. But if I were doing something like surgery, I would just like high dose it. The two brands I currently take, I take Elysium and Basis, NR and I take Quicksilver Scientific, NMN. In the future, I want to make my own version.  

Yeah, I would take that during the whole process, because you could take that. I mean, ask your doctor, but you should be able to take that before, during, and after, afterwards serrapeptase might be something to take because it enhances wound healing, lots of studies on that. Lots and lots of studies on that. So, I wouldn't take it before because they're probably telling you not to take blood thinners, things like that and serrapeptase can have a thinning effect on the blood. So, you won't want to be taking it before but afterwards could be really good thing. Those are the two things that come to mind for surgery specifically. And then just in general, any supplements that you're taking to support your personal health state kind of like we talked about before. Any thoughts, Gin?  

Gin Stephens: I'm going to talk about fasting. I know that's not what she asked. But sometimes people will have surgery and they'll ask about, "When should I start fasting again?" I would just say, "It's always great to talk to your surgical team about that and get their advice." But really, you want to listen to your body. You might need to eat more than you think you will. As part of the healing process, your body may like say, you know, be craving protein. If you're hungry for protein and craving it, eat it. Really listen to your body as you're recovering. Don't try to be like, "Well, I'm going to just fast for 20 hours." Maybe that's the wrong thing for your body. Maybe, it's the right thing. Animals in the wild know when to eat and when not to eat, and they listen to their bodies. So, really connect with your body, and see how you feel, and listen to those cues. Like if my body said eat potatoes, I would eat potatoes. If it said eat meat, eat meat. I would just do what it said to do.  

Melanie Avalon: Depending on surgery and everything like protein will likely be important, especially, depending on what you're getting.  

Gin Stephens: That's right. You need it. Here's something interesting. When I had that flu like illness a couple of weeks ago, the whole time that I wasn't feeling well and had a fever, I could not eat meat like I didn't want it. My body was like, "Nope." I would try to, "No, couldn't eat meat." Then as soon as I was better, I was craving meat like a crazy person. I just ate so much meat. [laughs] It was just weird. My body was like, "No meat." Now, I just want meat. 

Melanie Avalon: Yes, our bodies are very intuitive that way.  

Gin Stephens: Yep. All right, question four related to surgery. "Will have antibiotics for the first time in my life for that. My mom was very against it. So, never took in my entire life. What to take with it to minimize gut damage? Thank you, thank you, thank you. You're an amazing duo." You know, I haven't had any antibiotics since, I don't know, 2014 or 2015. I used to take them all the time because I was always having an infection when I was a teacher before fasting. But now, I don't have them. I don't need them. Anyway, she's never had an antibiotic. That's amazing. A-mazing.  

Melanie Avalon: Looking back in high school, I was on antibiotics for so long for acne. It's upsetting, but live and learn. So, this is a really good question and interestingly, I'm going to say something that might surprise people. They've actually done studies on antibiotics and recolonizing of the gut post-antibiotics, and they've actually found that supplementing probiotics directly after antibiotics can potentially slow down the body's return to its pre-antibiotic state. Because I think a lot of people will think they should take antibiotics and then immediately dose probiotics. I actually don't suggest that. I actually suggest taking antibiotics, fermented foods are a completely different case. I would focus on fermented foods instead. 

Gin Stephens: Like natural versions of probiotic foods.  

Melanie Avalon: I can put a link in the show notes to the study that talks about this, but I would probably suggest doing the antibiotics, framing it as in the positive because if you have to take it, no sense having a negative perspective of it and actually, can have a huge effect on things. It's something called the no SIBO effect, which is basically, if you anticipate bad things happening from whatever you're taking, it can actually make bad things happening. So, I would reframe it as, maybe this is like knocking out some bad guys. When you're done with it, I wouldn't do the probiotics right away. I would return to normal diet or standard diet throughout this, bring in natural fermented foods, and then a few weeks later, if you want to start on a different probiotic, that could be something to try. Its interesting people have asked me like, "Will I create a probiotic?" I just think there are a lot of probiotics that help people so much like this episode, for example, is sponsored by BiOptimizers. They make their magnesium.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, it is, isn't it? I didn't even notice that and me talking about my magnesium that I take that's theirs. [laughs] That was-- See, we really like the products that we have on the show. We use them. That's why we have them up on the show. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I know. So, they make an amazing probiotic P3-OM. So, that might be something to try a few weeks after going off the antibiotics. But I do think probiotics are another thing where it's just so individual. Like some people benefit, some people don't, and it's really just finding what works for you. So, any thoughts, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Nope. I think that was everything. And then, oh, that was it. We got them all.  

Melanie Avalon: All right, so, to end things, we have a question from Brittany. The subject is: "COFFEE WITH LOTS OF EASE." 

Gin Stephens: Coffee.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Yes. She says, "Hello, I just started listening to your podcast. So, I'm at the very beginning and I just listened to the coffee Episode 5." I forgot. We did that.  

Gin Stephens: I know. We were different then,  we didn't know what we were doing yet.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, we were trying to figure out like, what format and where we going to do topic episodes, and then we realized that the listener Q&As is just the way to go. She says, "I'm wondering about nut milks? Are they okay to add to my coffee while I'm transitioning or if I wait and break my fast with coffee? Thanks in advance."  

Gin Stephens: I have super bad news, Brittany, but I think you already knew what I was going to say. No, do not add them to your coffee. There's no freebie kind of milk of any kind that you can add to coffee that is not food for the body. Keep the nut milks in your eating window. I would recommend if you're new to intermittent fasting, really, I would Fast. Feast. Repeat. Because I really put everything in there that you're going to need to know and the why. Like, "Why can't I have--, why should I not do that?" It's all in Fast. Feast. Repeat again. Like I talked about with Clean(ish), I'm not just trying to sell you a book, but I spent a lot of time on that book as a resource because I wanted people to have something. So, instead of doing a Google search, where you're going to get crazy advice from people everything from yes to no to you know, "I only drink that milk--." There're all sorts of-- everything is conflicting. I put my very best advice in there based on the science and also what people are having success with, people in my communities.  

Oh, well, I'll tell you something funny, Melanie. Someone just yesterday in the DDD community, the private community that I have, somebody asked a question about butter in coffee, and we were talking about that, and then someone said as a comment, they're like, "You know, Gin, when I read Fast. Feast. Repeat, there were all those personal stories that you included from people about the clean fast and why." I was like, "That's a little bit of overkill." But as I kept reading, I was like, "Oh, no, this is actually [laughs] the best part." Because it's not just me telling you, it's people who are like, "Well, I thought you could have butter in your coffee because I heard that you could, so I did it, and fasting was hard, and then I saw what Gin said, and then, I stopped and oh, my gosh, it's better. It makes such a difference." So, that's why, I really would encourage you to take that clean fast challenge even if you think, "Well, I've always had butter in my coffee or I've always had nut milk in my coffee and it works for me,"  

I would have sworn to you that stevia works for me until I read The Obesity Code and realized the connection between insulin, and fat burning, and blood glucose levels because if your insulin goes up, your blood sugar goes down, that makes you hungrier, that sort of thing. Once I understood it, the science behind it, I took it out, made such a difference. I would have sworn to you that it "worked" for me till I removed it, and then realized it wasn't working for me. I didn't realize until I stopped that it wasn't. You don't know how good you can feel until you really feel good. So, that's why I would encourage anybody to do the clean fast. Black coffee, plain tea, don't use all the sweet herbal flavor or whatever in even things that are Swedish like chamomile, avoid those. Plain water, plain sparkling water, don't add anything else. Fast, clean, see what happens. Give yourself at least a month. Maybe six weeks of the clean fast, and then you know try that nut milk, and you will absolutely be a believer. You'll be like, "Oh yeah, that doesn't work for me." You're going to feel different. Then you will never doubt it again. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: I knew you would have the perfect answer to that.  

Gin Stephens: I used to put cinnamon in my coffee back in those days, too. Cinnamon and stevia as part of my fast. So, one day just-- then I realized, "Okay, cinnamon is our body foresees that as being a tasty treat." So, I was like one day, it's been since 2019 because it was in this house where we moved in 2019. I remember, I was about to open my window and not too long, and I'm like, "You know, I'm just going to test cinnamon now. Just I want to see. I just want to see what happens." It made me so starving, and shaky, and I was like, "All right, there you go." And luckily, I was about to have my window, so I just did, but it wasn't like psychological. I was like, "Maybe, this will be fine." It wasn't fine.  

Melanie Avalon: I knew you'd have the perfect answer to that. I have two tangential thoughts.  

Gin Stephens: Okay.  

Melanie Avalon: I never realized how much Swedish sounds like sweetish. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, like sweet-ish.  

Melanie Avalon: Sweetish, like the same word. Two, on the nut milk front, guess who I'm interviewing tomorrow?  

Gin Stephens: Well, I have no idea.  

Melanie Avalon: Dr. Neal Barnard.  

Gin Stephens: Does he love nut milk? He's like vegan, right?  

Melanie Avalon: He's like the vegan. The vegan of vegans. I'm nervous. I'm actually nervous. I don't get nervous much anymore. I'm very nervous.  

Gin Stephens: Here's my advice. If someone is awful or rude, just don't air their episode. So, there's nothing that can go wrong.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't think he'll be awful or rude.  

Gin Stephens: I wasn't saying him. I didn't think he would. But my point is don't be nervous because if someone is awful, not him, but just anybody in general. You got nothing to be nervous about. I get it though, I get it.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm so fascinated by the whole veganismness. I feel like I have a lot of knowledge about it but I wish I had more if that makes sense, but I have a lot of questions for him.  

Gin Stephens: Well, he is very much like, "This is the way everyone should be."  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I think that's one of that part of the reason that I'm-- 

Gin Stephens: That you're nervous? Yeah. 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: I get it. I totally get that because obviously, neither of us believe that is the way everyone should be. And I'm not saying no one should be [laughs] either. Between everyone and no one is where the reality is.  

Melanie Avalon: Maybe, this is another reason that I'm nervous. I haven't listened to any debates with him between-- Mostly when I see him, it's him-- Listeners, he's in all the documentaries. So, like any of them. Like What the Health like all of them. He's there. So, it's normally like, he's normally in an environment where it's just him putting forth his position. So, I don't know how he acts. I'm not going to be debating him, but I have a lot of questions. So, I don't know how that dialogue is going to go. So, we shall see.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I get it.  

Melanie Avalon: I have learned a lot though about soy.  

Gin Stephens: So, he's a big fan of it.  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. That's something that really goes back to, I think, now, the gut microbiome. It depends if you have gut bacteria that produces compound called Equol. I think around 90% of western population doesn't have that gut bacteria. So, it's like, I think that's a huge factor and if you get health benefits from soy or not.  

Gin Stephens: I also think there's a huge genetic component to soy and the populations that traditionally had that as part of their diet are going to be more adapted to it. I am not one of those populations. I'm European, the British Isles over there, and a little bit of also other Europeans sprinkled in for the most part, and we were not ever there eating soy. My ancestors were not. I like edamame, but tofu can't do it. Can't do it, I've tried, just can't.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I'll let you know how it goes.  

Gin Stephens: Yep. Well, I can't wait to hear. 

Melanie Avalon: Me, too. [giggles] All right. So, for listeners, this has been absolutely wonderful. A few things for listeners before we go. If you would like to submit your own questions for the show, you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there or you can directly email questions@podcast.com. The show notes will have a full transcript as well as links to everything we talked about. I think we talked about a lot of stuff that is at ifpodcast.com/episode243. You can get all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike, and then you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast, I am @melanieavalon, Gin's @ginstephens, and I think that is everything. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?  

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.  

Melanie Avalon: I just remembered something. I'm going to talk about next week that is changing my life.  

Gin Stephens: Well, I can't wait to hear that and I'm not-- really can't wait to hear.  

Melanie Avalon: That's why I thought about it. So, yeah, all right. Well, I will talk to you next week. Happy holidays.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. You, too. Bye.  

Melanie Avalon: Bye.  

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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

More on Gin:
GinStephens.com

Theme Music Composed By Leland Cox: LelandCox.com

If you enjoyed this episode, please consider leaving us a review in iTunes - it helps more than you know! 

 

 

Aug 29

Episode 228: Kidney Failure, Hormones, Night Sweats, Low Sex Drive, HRT, Birth Control, Medicine & Weight Gain, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 228 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:

BUTCHERBOX: Grass-Fed Beef, Organic Chicken, Heritage Pork, Wild-Caught Seafood: Nutrient-Rich, Raised Sustainably The Way Nature Intended, And Shipped Straight To Your Door! For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get 6 Burgers, 8 Hot Dogs, And Up To 3 Lbs Of Chicken Breasts For FREE!

MOLEKULE: Clean air is vital for health! Molekule air purifiers actually work on molecule level (thus the name!) to eliminate - not just mask or neutralize - indoor air pollution, including pollutants 1000 times smaller than traditional HEPA filters! Say goodbye to viruses, mold, airborne chemicals, bacteria, and allergens! After all, if you’re breathing clearer with serrapeptase, don’t you want to breath cleaner air to boot?
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To submit your own questions, email questions@IFpodcast.com, or submit your questions here!! 

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To butcherbox.com/ifpodcast And Get 6 Burgers, 8 Hot Dogs, And Up To 3 Lbs Of Chicken Breasts For FREE!

4:00 - BEAUTYCOUNTER: Keep Your Fast Clean Inside And Out With Safe Skincare! Shop With Us At MelanieAvalon.com/beautycounter, And Something Magical Might Happen After Your First Order! Find Your Perfect Beautycounter Products With Melanie's Quiz: melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz
Join Melanie's Facebook Group Clean Beauty And Safe Skincare With Melanie Avalon To Discuss And Learn About All The Things Clean Beauty, Beautycounter And Safe Skincare!

Stay Up To Date With All The News And Pre-Order Info About Melanie's New Serrapeptase Supplement At melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase!

15:00 - Listener Feedback: Megan - No More Medicines!

Grass Fed Kidney by Ancestral Supplements

18:05 - MOLEKULE: For A Limited Time Go To molekule.com And Use The Code Ifpodcast120 At Checkout To Save Up To $120!

20:30 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - IUD

28:25 - Listener Q&A: Julie - Sleep, Sex Drive, and Sweat

EPISODE 25: DEMYSTIFYING MENOPAUSE: FROM PRE- TO POST-, WITH DR. ANNA CABECA

EPISODE 26: SEXUAL HEALTH AND LIBIDO, WITH DR. ANNA CABECA

42:40 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To masszymes.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

44:55 - Listener Q&A: Sarah - So Discouraged

DRY FARM WINES: Natural, Organic, Low Alcohol, Low Sugar Wines, Paleo And Keto Friendly! Go To dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast To Get A Bottle For A Penny!

Kiss My Keto MCT Oil

For A Limited Time Go To drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast To Get A Sample Pack For Only The Price Of Shipping!!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 228 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing your 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. 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.commelanieavalon.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. I'm about to tell you how you can get six free grass-fed burgers, eight heritage-breed pork hot dogs, and up to three pounds of organic free-range chicken breasts all for free. Yes, for free. We are so honored to be sponsored by ButcherBox. They make it so, so easy to get high-quality, humanely raised meat that you can trust. They deliver 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef, free-range organic chicken, heritage-breed pork, that's really hard to find by the way, and wild-caught sustainable and responsible seafood shipped directly to your door. 

When you become a member, you're joining a community focused on doing what's better for everyone, that includes caring about the lives of animals, the livelihoods of farmers, treating our planet with respect and enjoying deliciously better meals together. There is a lot of confusion out there when it comes to transparency, regarding raising practices, what is actually in our food, how animals are being treated. I did so much research on ButcherBox, you can actually check out my blog post all about it at melanieavalon.com/ButcherBox. But I am so grateful for all of the information that I learned about their company. All of their beef is 100% grass fed and grass finished, that's really hard to find, and they work personally with all the farmers to truly support the regenerative agriculture system. I also did an interview with Robb Wolf on my show, the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, all about the massive importance of supporting regenerative agriculture for the sustainability of not only ourselves but the planet, this is so important to me. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. 

If you recently saw a documentary on Netflix called Seaspiracy, you might be a little bit nervous about eating seafood. Now, I understand why ButcherBox makes it so, so clear and important about how they work with the seafood industry. Everything is checked for transparency for quality and for sustainable raising practices. You want their seafood. The value is incredible. The average cost is actually less than $6 per meal. And it's so easy, everything ships directly to your door.  

I am a huge steak lover. Every time I go to a restaurant, I usually order the steak. Oh, my goodness, the ButcherBox steaks are amazing. I remember the first time I had one and I just thought this is honestly one of the best steaks I've ever had in my entire life. On top of that, did you know that the fatty acid profile of grass-fed, grass-finished steaks is much healthier for you than conventional steaks. And their bacon, for example, is from pastured pork and sugar and nitrate free. How hard is that to find. 

ButcherBox has an incredible deal to help you savor the rest of the summer. For a limited time, new members can get six free grass-fed burgers, eight heritage-breed pork hotdogs, and up to three pounds of organic free-range chicken breasts all for free when you sign up at butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. That's butcherbox.com/ifpodcast for free burgers, hot dogs, and chicken breasts in your first box. 

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know 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. So, when you're putting on your conventional skincare and 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 and makeup that you're putting on today actually affects the health of future generations. Did you know 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, antiaging 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 sort of 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.  

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 228 of the Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here Gin Stephens.  

Gin Stephens: Hi everybody.  

Melanie Avalon: How are you today, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Well, I have some interesting news to share. We have a diabetic cat, officially diabetic. Our cat is diabetic. Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Gin, we just found out our cat is diabetic.  

Gin Stephens: Really? Is it your parents’ cat?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. Like our family cat from--  

Gin Stephens: Yep. Well, we have three cats, and one of them, Ringo was acting weird, and I thought he might have a bladder infection or something. I took him to the vet and they're like, “Well, his bladder has no infection, but his blood glucose is 380 something.” I'm like, “Oh, that seems high for a cat.” [laughs] Is it the same for people? Yeah, I’ll try to find that out. Apparently, it's not exactly the same for people, but 380, that was high. Now, he gets insulin twice a day.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, our cat was, I think my dad said over 500.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, that is high. That's really high.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Makes me really sad. I do wonder--  

Gin Stephens: Is he getting insulin? Is your cat getting insulin?  

Melanie Avalon: I'm not sure. This is like a really new development. I'm not sure yet.  

Gin Stephens: Okay, it just happened for us too. We went back to have it rechecked just to make sure and it was still that high. Then, they kept him overnight and tried to figure out the right dose for him. Because with cats, you don't have to test their blood glucose personally. They just told me how much insulin to give them, and so we're giving it to him twice a day, and then I have to go back next week, and they're going to just make sure. We don't want him to have too much insulin, so they're going to check and save it. I just give it to him while he's eating, and he doesn't even notice.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. First thing I said, I was like, “Can we put her on a low carb diet?”  

Gin Stephens: They can, actually. They have a special cat food for that.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think if I was taking care of her, that's what I would do.  

Gin Stephens: Our problem is that we have three cats, and they have a special diabetic cat food, but I looked at the ingredients, they were not impressive to me, and it seemed to have a lot of things in there still, and it was very pricey. I'm not going to feed all three of my cats this special diabetic food. So, we did up the quality of our food. We got a different kind of food, not theirs, that wanted us to take, and we got a different kind, still higher quality than we had been feeding them.  

Melanie Avalon: I would probably like to make the food myself. I was feeding them freeze dried raw food. It was probably-- 

Melanie Avalon: Well, they get some wet food in the morning. They all get-- it's meat. It's a meaty tinned cat food, the meat with gravy or whatever. Then, they have the dry cat food for the rest of the day when they want to have some.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: Anyway, interesting that yours also has diabetes. I'd never really heard a lot about it, and everybody's like, “Oh, yeah, me too.” Apparently, it's very common. I was freaking out. I'm like, “I don't want to get this--,” and he's like, “It's no big deal,” the vet. 

Melanie Avalon: My mom, she said this matter of factly, I was laughing, she basically said, all cats die of kidney disease. I was like, “Is that a true statement, mom?” 

Gin Stephens: They usually do get kidney disease. A lot of them do. We've had two that I know of that died of kidney disease. Maybe we're just feeding them really the wrong foods.  

Melanie Avalon: I'm sure that's what it is. I'm not sure of anything, but-- 

Gin Stephens: Well, if they're all getting kidney disease or maybe they're not supposed to live as long as they're living in the wild. Maybe cats wouldn't normally live this long.  

Melanie Avalon: But it's really interesting that it's kidney disease.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah. That's true, which makes me feel like it's something that we're feeding them. 

Melanie Avalon: I think so. Yeah, because cats are carnivores. We're not feeding them a carnivore diet. We're feeding them carbs.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's what we changed their food a lot.  

Melanie Avalon: I feel like it's one of the best examples of what happens when you put a species on a diet that's not suited to. 

Gin Stephens: That's not right for them.  

Melanie Avalon: Well.  

Gin Stephens: Well, poor Ringo. You can tell he feels better though already. He's back to his old happier self.  

Melanie Avalon: That's good. Well, I have two exciting updates.  

Gin Stephens: Okay. Well, I can't wait to hear them. 

Melanie Avalon: One, you already know, but I interviewed Robb Wolf again, this week. Listeners, out of the hundred plus guests I've had on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, he is my favorite. 

Gin Stephens: That's amazing. Already over a hundred.  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. 

Gin Stephens: It just feels like you just started that.  

Melanie Avalon: I know.  

Gin Stephens: What? You've already-- I swear, it feels like you just started that podcast, and you do one a week, you've been doing it for over 100 weeks.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the episode that came out this past Friday was Episode 105.  

Gin Stephens: Wow. Well, congratulations. That's exciting. I know when you have somebody that you really admire-- 

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I try not to fangirl quite as much, but I was overwhelmingly fangirling as per usual. But the episode will not be out by the time this comes out but it will be at melanieavalon.com/electrolytes. I wanted to do a foundational educational episode on electrolytes. So many of our listeners have benefited from LMNT, because that's Robb's company. Oh, it is really fascinating. He's just so smart. I just think he's very nuanced, and not biased in his opinions on things. So, I really, really respect him. 

Then, the second update, listeners, you can officially go to melanieavalon.com/serrapeptase, and that's where you can get on the email list for my new serrapeptase supplement, and we're going to do a preorder special. We haven't come up with the exact specifics, but we're probably going to do a tiered thing where like-- because we're only doing 1200 bottles for the first order. So, I think we're going to do something where the first one hundred people get the lowest price, and then the next 400 will be a slightly higher price, and then the remaining. But either way, the preorder price, it's probably never going to be that low again. We're doing a special just for the preorder. So, definitely get on that email list, because I don't know. I think it might sell out for the preorder. So, I'm very excited.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah.  

Melanie Avalon: Anything else new in your world?  

Gin Stephens: No. [laughs] Just giving shots to a cat twice a day. So, that's the thing. We're going to have to be around them all the time, and when I go to the beach, I'm going for three weeks. I'm leaving in a week. Chad's going to have to do it. If we go somewhere together, the two of us, I guess we have to board him. He is not going to like that. Oh, my gosh, he hated being at the vet overnight.  

Melanie Avalon: Have you boarded them before?  

Gin Stephens: Well, we have. The couple of times we rented our house for Masters, you have to get your pets out of the house. I think we only rented our house twice. It was a long time ago. When we did it, and now, I was like, “I hate this.” Part of it was taken all the cats to the vet and boarding them. I didn't like the thought of that. Also, your house, when you go on vacation, just going on vacation is stressful enough. Now, imagine your house has to be perfect, and that it has to be not just perfect, but you're having guests there that are paying you thousands of dollars to stay in your home? [laughs] Yeah, this is when the boys were at home, and I'm like, “No one use that bathroom. Do not go in that bathroom.” Then sure enough, someone would go use that bathroom. I'm like, “What is happening?" I said, "Don't use that.” It was not worth it to me.  

Melanie Avalon: That's a lot to deal with.  

Gin Stephens: It is a lot. so.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I just like to have my space with me, and--  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you have to put things away and you're like what if they're going through my underwear drawer, I better put my underwear all away. It’s just-- 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, goodness, I'd be so stressed.  

Gin Stephens: Yeah, imagine. It's just for a week and you're having to clear out for total strangers and you also hear horror stories. We had great renters. They’ve worked for a Canadian sports casting company. The two years that we rented, they were fantastic. So, they were the camera crew and on air, whoever. They came to our house and they worked. They were working most of the day at the Masters. They just came back and apparently, they drank a lot of wine and beer while they were at our house, because they left all that. We could see. But they were not in the house a lot. It's when you have a different kind of groups of people that it can get rowdy and that's when the horror stories come in. I think some of the best people to have are the golfers themselves. Like our neighbor rents to the golfers.  

Melanie Avalon: No renting for me. 

Gin Stephens: No. I hate to put the pets and they don't like it. They don't understand, they're in this little cage. I don't know. 

Melanie Avalon: Well, in any case, shall we move on to everything for today?  

Gin Stephens: Yep, let's get started.  

Melanie Avalon: All right, so to start things off, we have some feedback from Megan. The subject is, "No more medicines." Megan says, "Hi ladies. I, so enjoy listening to your podcast. I have been learning so much. My husband suggested that I write to tell you about the amazing results I've seen since starting to fast last month. I started by reading Gin's book, Delay, Don't Deny. I started June 18th at 236 pounds and I am already down to 215. I have gone down a pant size. I would like to get down to 135 or so, but this is the first time I really believe it will happen," and she has a smiley face emoji. She says, "And I'm postmenopausal. I have also stopped taking meds for heartburn/reflux, apple cider vinegar capsules, Prilosec and Tums, and allergies." She was taking Zyrtec, Flonase and Breathe Right strips, "No more snoring. My heart rate has gone down to 40 BPM to 50 BPM while I'm sleeping, and I'm waking up only once in the middle of the night. I'm thinking more clearly at work. My rosacea has cleared up quite a bit. I have not had any headaches. It really has changed my life. I thank you so much for helping me get started. My boyfriend is so impressed with what he's seeing that he is going to start soon as well. Thanks again, Meg. 

Gin Stephens: That's awesome. Meg, thank you so much for letting us know. That is really quick for all those positive benefits. 

Melanie Avalon: I think it's just wonderful. I feel so many people start IF to lose weight, and then they experience all of these other benefits that they didn't even anticipate. 

Gin Stephens: That's it. The health plan with the side effect of weight loss, I really believe it.  

Melanie Avalon: I've been wanting to share this on the podcast, and this sparked my memory, for histamine intolerance. I have been taking Ancestral Supplements desiccated kidney. I'm shocked by the effects it has on my, what I perceive, is probably histamine intolerance. It's incredible. So, I really recommend people if they at all struggle with histamine, they try-- it contains DAO, which is the enzyme that breaks down histamine that can really help support that if people are struggling with that.  

Gin Stephens: Very cool. There's so many things going on in our bodies. That's just something we have to keep in mind all the time. Which is why, there's no one size fits all answer for pretty much anything, because we all have bazillions of things, that's the official term. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Well, I'm really curious. My mom has been struggling with her kidneys. I really want her to start taking it, because a lot of people report that they've been able to reverse kidney disease with it even though doctors say that kidney disease is not reversible. But my mom, she's coming around. She's like, "My doctor says it's not reversible, but I know it is." I think I shared the story before but she had really high cholesterol and our doctor said that she needed to go on statins. She decided to change her diet, she drastically lowered her cholesterol and her doctor was like, “I guess you can change [laughs] by diet.” Now, she's on that diet train to fix things which is really cool.  

Gin Stephens: That really is. So much power in the food.  

Melanie Avalon: Hi, friends. I'm about to tell you how you can get $120 off, an incredible air purifier that doesn't just purify, but actually destroys bacteria, mold, allergens, chemicals, and viruses including SARS-CoV-2. Did that indoor air can be up to five times worse than outdoor air according to the EPA? That's why I love Molekule. They are reimagining the future of clean air, starting with the air purifier. Global air pollution is actually worsening at an ever-increasing rate. Over 80% of people living in urban areas are exposed to air quality below the World Health Organization standard. And you know what’s crazy? Most air purifiers use outdated HEPA technology and actually can rerelease them back into the air. 

Molekule actually destroys them using a patented PECO technology. This technology and filtration system have been rigorously tested and verified by third party labs. Trust me on this one, I reviewed the studies myself. Especially when my apartment flooded and I had mold exposure, I was so grateful that I had my Molekule air purifier. In fact, PECO can actually destroy pollutants thousand times smaller than what the HEPA standard tests for. Now more than ever helping to reduce the risk of exposure to viruses and the home or workplace is so important. In fact, Molekule’s PECO technology meets performance criteria and FDA guidance for use and helping to reduce the risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 in healthcare settings during the COVID-19 emergency. Basically, these are the air purifiers you want. 

The devices are also beautiful. I absolutely love mine. They're made with premium materials and minimalist sensibilities. They just look really cool. They have units to fit all sizes. They have the Molekule air for large spaces, the Air Mini for small rooms, or the Air Pro for extra-large rooms. 

For a limited time, this is amazing, our audience can actually save up to $120 on Molekule air purifiers, just go to molekule.com and use the promo code, IFPODCAST120. That's M-O-L-E-K-U-L-E dotcom, with the promo code, IFPODCAST120. You'll also get free shipping and a 30-day, at-home trial on your order. Again, that's IFPODCAST120 at molekule.com, and I'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show. 

Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Sarah, and the subject is "IUD." She says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie, huge fan of both of you and all your work. IF changed my life and has become such an important part of my healthy lifestyle. After Melanie's recent interview with Dr. Will Cole, I began listening to his podcast. He interviewed Leanne Vogel, and she had a lot of interesting insights about adjusting your fasting based on menstrual cycles to optimize the benefits. I have an IUD," and she put in parenthesis, Mirena, "implanted and I don't get a period. I've had the Mirena for 10 years now and love the ease and effectiveness of this type of birth control, and have had no complaints or side effects. 

I've been fasting for a year and a half and usually do a 20:4 window. I've been at my ideal weight into a primarily for the health benefits specifically to manage GI distress, heartburn/reflux, and blood sugar crashes/hangriness. I'm 41 years old, and I eat pescatarian with very minimal processed food. Most of the time, I feel great, but I do have days where I just feel bleh and low energy. I, sometimes think maybe it's my allergies. I sometimes think it's low electrolytes. So, I started taking the element supplements. But now I have another factor to consider. Is it my body cycles, even though I do not get a period, what are your thoughts? Thank you in advance and keep up the good work.”  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, this is a great question from Sarah, and I was excited to include it because I recently read Alisa Vitti’s, In the FLO book, and I learned a lot in that book about the female cycle. I learned so much, and I also since then also read Stephanie Estima, The Betty Body, and also learned a lot about the female cycle. So, it's been a lot of education for me personally. I don't personally agree with Alisa Vitti’s, her entire perspective on fasting, but I do think there was a lot of valuable information in her book. She thinks when you're on birth control, hormonal or not-- because IUDs can be hormonal or not. 

Gin Stephens: And the Merina is hormonal, by the way.  

Melanie Avalon: She says the body does still cycle and experience the effects of the cycle. I couldn't find any studies talking about this specifically. Most of the literature on it was saying that because of the hormones involved that you're not cycling, if your period goes away entirely, that you are existing in this different hormonal state. It's really interesting, because on the hormonal IUD, some people do still cycle and some people don't. What it all says to me is that I think it's very possible that this could be happening. It's hard to know, but I think it could be. Do you have thoughts on it, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: Really what you said, I think. Also, sometimes, we just feel bleh and have low energy. I'm on the other side of menopause. So, my hormones are not doing the same thing that they had been doing. Sometimes, I feel bleh compared to other days. It just happens sometimes. There's so many causes out there that could lead to you not feeling your best. It's absolutely impossible for us to ever know. Sometimes, you can't even know what it is when it's you personally going through it, you're trying to figure it out, but you definitely can't know for somebody else. Does that make sense?  

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. Yeah.  

Gin Stephens: If you notice that you felt bleh every 28 days, maybe make a note of it. That would indicate-- You can do some things to try to figure it out, like mark it down and say, “Oh, look. I do feel bleh every 28 days.” That probably is something with a cycle going on in my body. 

Melanie Avalon: You could also do temperature tracking. So, Oura. Well, I've had them on the show twice, but I'm interviewing one of the researchers that they work with this week and her focus is ultradian and infradian rhythms. We're going to probably talk all about this like temperature tracking and the different rhythms in the body. So, I'm very excited. There's a lot of rhythms in the body, a lot of clocks. There's a lot of clocks.  

Gin Stephens: There are so many which is why it always, I don't know, it bothers me. I don't know if that's the right word to use. It's amusing to me to consider that the thought that we would all be "exactly the same." When it comes to that there's so many moving parts and I don't literally mean moving parts. I mean there are moving parts, but there’s so many things going on that we're all just going to be different. Not everyone has the exact same length menstrual cycle. 

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. Oh yeah, not even remotely.  

Gin Stephens: That's just one example of that we know. That some women are clockwork every 26 days or something, and that's their normal cycle, whereas other people are slightly longer. Really, when I was going through perimenopause, it just really showed me how powerful these hormones are because then you have no regularity for a period of time. After being regular, it's like now we have 10 days, now we have 32 days, now we have four days. It was crazy. [laughs] It just lets that our bodies just are doing what they're doing back there, and it really just depends on our hormones, and so many other factors. They're out of your control. 

Melanie Avalon: Or, they're influenced by what you're doing.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, they're totally influenced by so many things. But it's not something you're consciously-- the changes that my body has gone through over menopause, they happened. No matter what I do, I have had changes. You're going to have changes, then you have to respond to those changes. I was reading something this past week. Someone was talking about having trouble losing weight, and of course, I asked her age, and she was someone probably 10 years ahead of me as far as deep into menopause, and I was doing some reading. We really need less fuel as we age. We need less fuel.  

Melanie Avalon: But more protein.  

Gin Stephens: Yes, but more protein. That was in what I was reading. But that's something to keep in mind, for anybody who's getting older, we don't need to eat as much food. So, let's say you're someone that-- of course, neither of us recommends counting calories. But let's say, you're somebody who has been counting your calories for decades exactly how much you're eating, and now all of a sudden, you're eating the exact same number of calories, and you're slowly gaining weight. Is there something wrong with you? No. That's just it's normal for our bodies to need less energy, less fuel as we age. So, if you're postmenopausal and you find your weight is slowly creeping up, even though your eating habits have not changed, my point is that they might need to change. You may need to eat less food. Boy, that's annoying to hear and understand. I don't want to hear that. I don't want to hear that now that I'm 52, maybe I need to eat less food. That's no fun. I want to eat more food. Not less food.  

Melanie Avalon: Thankfully though, with intermittent fasting, one of the things I love about it is with the shorter eating window, you get to eat more satisfying. Even if it's less food, it doesn't feel as much less food, because you could eat more of it once. 

Gin Stephens: It's easier to eat less food in an eating window than throughout the whole day, absolutely. But I just want to encourage people that may be in the same stage as me or are older than me to understand that, “Oh gosh, well, this is just a fact of life that maybe I'm going to have to eat a little bit less food as I get older than I could eat when I was in my 40s” for example. And it's okay. I'm not going to be mad at my body for changing in the way that bodies change.  

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

Gin Stephens: Yes.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, the next question is from Julie. The subject is "Sleep, sex drive, and sweats."  

Gin Stephens: Can I just say one thing before we even read it? Before we even read what Julie has to say? That subject line, sleep, sex drive and sweats is perimenopause in a subject line. That's all I'm going to say. So, let's just hear what Julie has to say, but that really flows nicely with what we were just talking about.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, Julie says, “Greetings, Gin and Melanie. My name is Julie. I'm a 51-year-old high school special education teacher in Michigan. I'm 5’4". I'm pretty active. I walk four miles, five to six days per week and bike 14 miles at a good pace once a week during our non-snow months. I'll do some light lifting but I'm inconsistent. I'm definitely going through perimenopause and was approaching my one year with no cycle, then bam. I had a weak cycle in May 2021.” 

Gin Stephens: Then, you have to start over again. For people who don't know yet because you're not quite at that stage of your life, you've got to start the clock over again. I remember being exactly where you are, Julie, with that and like being mad, because I was so excited that time was progressing and then, bam, cycle. You have to start over and then you have to wait a year before, anyway. I just had to throw that in there. 

Melanie Avalon: That's really frustrating.  

Gin Stephens: It is what it is.  

Melanie Avalon: I keep mentioning Stephanie Estima, but she talks about that a lot in her book. She talks about the vagueness surrounding defining perimenopause and menopause. That is basically just this counting game and that it's very vague. In any case, Julie says, “Cheers to me. The yearlong count starts again. Insert eyeroll, angry face emoji here. My questions are coming. I stumbled across IF and your podcast last summer 2020 when I was trying to drop a few pounds before my son's wedding. I have done the traditional diets in the past such as Weight Watchers, counting calories, low fat, etc. I have learned lessons each time I would “diet” throughout my adult years and I've implemented those lessons changes with my daily lifestyle.  

I used to drink three cans of diet caffeine free pot per day, I used to eat way more carbs, I used to put cream and sweetener in my coffee, I used to eat three to four meals per day, I used to be on three kinds of medication, and now I'm only taking vitamins. This has been a huge win for me.” That sounds familiar, sounds like one of our earlier questions. She says, “Prior to IF, I fluctuated between 148 to 158 for 20 years. I feel mentally best when I'm under 150. When I started IF in summer 2020, I was at 156 pounds and my goal was to get to 148. However, I found myself dropping to 142 and I was thrilled with the quick results. Not to mention, I just felt great. My current weight has been ranging between 143 to 145," and she has a goal of 138 to 142. "Since summer of 2020 until summer 2021, I have never ever not done an IF day less than 16:8. It truly is the easiest lifestyle to obtain. 

However, things have changed since I started. In fact, within weeks of starting I do not sleep as well. I used to sleep solidly for eight hours. I taught centered all night and every night. Is this my IF lifestyle or my perimenopause? I find myself overheating and having night sweats. After I open my window about two hours later, and they continue throughout my sleeping hours. Thoughts? What can I change? Change my eating window, what I'm eating, or, is this all part of my change? Not to mention, my sex drive has gone down. Ugh. I've been married for 30 years, and this has never been an issue for me, and started soon after I started the IF lifestyle. Please help.” All right, do you have help, Gin? 

Gin Stephens: I do, and here's something interesting to know. When I started intermittent fasting, the time that stuck in 2014 and never quit again, I've been doing it now since 2014, I was at that point-- In the year before I started intermittent fasting, I had trouble with uterine fibroids, which I think I've talked about before. I had surgery for that. I wasn't like this perfect healthy, hormonal, everything was perfect, and then it wasn't kind of person. I had issues before intermittent fasting with fibroids. But after I started intermittent fasting, that all got better. The whole fibroid thing after the surgery and I was taking serrapeptase, and I no longer had that struggle with the heavy flow and the bleeding. Sorry, guys, but you're just going to have to hear this. But it was really, really hard before I had the surgery. But then everything was better.  

Then, I had a few years that I would call perimenopause, where my cycles became irregular, but that was it. It was just irregularity. They would be short, they'd be long, it was all over the place, it was wacky. But then, as it continued, all of a sudden, Julie, those things and it was right around when it started to get really, really longer, like how you said you almost made it a year, and then bam. That was when everything got to the point where you just described. I stopped sleeping well, I started overheating, I started feeling sweaty after opening my window even more throughout my sleeping hours, the loss of libido, check, check, check. For me, I had enough years where I wasn't doing that, so I am pretty sure the cause effect was not intermittent fasting and then these symptoms. I actually sailed through perimenopause and felt great. It was right when I got to that point-- I think of it like this. 

When I interviewed Dr. Jones for the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast, he works with women over the transition, and he really opened my eyes and helped me understand what was happening. As our bodies start to decrease estrogen, progesterone, that's when we start having these symptoms. I was like, “Okay," So, it's really textbook. Take the intermittent fasting out of the picture completely, this is the way women feel during this transition. So, I didn't feel like that. Then, I had like you're saying the long period of time where I didn't have a cycle and then I had another one, and then had to start the clock again but it was during that second part of it before when I was going through my last full year when all those symptoms that you just described happened. 

I would really encourage you to listen, if you want to really understand it, Sheri and I enough for The Life Lessons Podcast, we did two episodes with Dr. Anna Cabeca. She's an OB-GYN, and she's known as the girlfriend doctor, because she really is like talking to a girlfriend. She's fabulous. It's episode 25 and episode 26. For episode 25, we talked about demystifying menopause. We talked about what your body's going through pre, during the transition, and then post. Then we had episode 26, which was sexual health and libido. Again, just like you, when you said that you've been married for 30 years, this has never been an issue for you, I could write this entire everything exactly like you. I could have written that. Never was an issue, boom, it was an issue. It is shocking and surprising when it suddenly is. But the best part about talking to Dr. Cabeca is that once we understand this is normal, this is what women go through as our hormones decrease and change, and there are also some things you can do to help with some of these symptoms, and Dr. Cabeca has got some solutions for you. So, definitely look for The Life Lessons Podcast, if you go to any podcast app and search Gin Stephens, you can find it. Sheri is the cohost, and look for episode 25, and then episode 26.  

We got a lot of feedback on those two episodes. People really enjoyed listening to Dr. Cabeca. She's just fantastic. She's actually going to come on the Intermittent Fasting Stories Podcast because she's also an intermittent faster. But I can confidently say that we go through this as women, whether we're intermittent fasters or not, and I really still to this day think that intermittent fasting helped me go through it easier than what I've heard from other people, what they've gone through. Does that mean it was painless? No. [laughs] It's weird. It's so weird when you're like, “wow, what is happening?”  

Melanie Avalon: Yes, well, I knew Gin that you would have the answer for that. That was perfect.  

Gin Stephens: Her subject line is really the menopausal transition in three words. Well, it's well, one, two, three words, five words, but sleep, sex drive, and sweats. There it is. [laughs]  

Melanie Avalon: Something Julie might want to look into that might help, I'm not a doctor. I'm not prescribing. I'm currently reading a book by Michael Platt, and it's called Adrenaline Dominance. He actually has another book as well that I'm going to read called The Miracle of Bio-identical Hormones. His theory is that a lot of the issues that we experienced, not even things we perceive as hormonal, but a lot of health issues in general, are related to adrenaline dominance, and he believes that progesterone is often the hormone that can really mitigate that and balance hormones, and a lot of people seem to benefit from progesterone.  

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Dr. Jones that I talked to explain how when he gets women on the right dose of progesterone, that it just changes their lives. They're sleeping better, and Dr. Cabeca talked about the same thing. That's definitely want to work with a professional that's going to help you find the right dose for your body. That's important. You don't want to just be guessing. 

Melanie Avalon: 100%. He had a list of things to keep in mind when using progesterone cream, specifically. The first thing was what you just said, Gin. He says, “There's no one size fits all dosage. The patient begins with a generally recommended dosage and then adapts to the amount and frequency of application and even application site as needed.” He says-- I love this, he says, “When it comes to dosing progesterone, it's better to treat the patient rather than the lab test.” That is adjust the dosage according to the patient's response rather than the blood test results. 

Gin Stephens: I think that's huge, too. I've heard that about thyroid medication as well. That's how they used to do it before labs. 

Melanie Avalon: Kind of goes into what we were saying that at the beginning of this show, you were talking about how it's hard to test these things anyway. It's hard to even know and I think when it comes to supplementing with hormones, bioidentical hormones, progesterone cream, going off how you feel is really-- That sounds really vague, but working with a practitioner and basing it on your symptoms and how you feel rather than necessarily what the lab tests might show.  

Gin Stephens: The levels. Yeah, 100%.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. He says it's best applied to areas with a good blood supply where the skin is thin. That's the inner forearm, the upper chest, the back of the neck, at a face. He says it appears to be extremely safe with few potential side effects. This is interesting. He says progesterone has a short half-life in the bloodstream about five to six minutes because of its propensity to attach readily to receptor sites. He says saliva tests do not give an accurate picture of progesterone levels, except maybe if you're using just a cream. Then, he thinks you should avoid oral progesterone. But in any case, that might be something to look into, finding a practitioner who works with hormones. 

Gin Stephens: That's what I would recommend 100% and trying to get what's right for you until your symptoms are better. But again, it does get better to the degree that now that I'm on the other side, I am sleeping better now. I was having more trouble sleeping than I am now, but my sleep has gotten better. It's still not the sleep that I had before, I'm going to just say. It's like I don't need as much sleep. My mother was just here. I hadn't seen her in a while. She lives in Virginia. But of course, couldn't travel during the pandemic, but I just spent some time with her, and she was talking about what she does. She wakes up so early, like crazy early, like 4:30. That's when she wakes up. So, I was like, “Okay, we've got the same rhythm.” I bet. I'm not waking up at 4:30 but she goes to bed really early wakes up really early. Really early. 

Melanie Avalon: I was telling you, Gin. I literally went to bed at 5 AM last night. I'm dying. My Oura Ring, I got the worst score I've ever received on my Oura Ring ever. It was a 51. I was like, "It knows, it knows." When it's that bad, it suggests a recovery day. I didn't do it. But I think basically, if you put it in that mode, it won't penalize you for not-- I think what it does is, it doesn't penalize you for doing activity. It'll change your activity goals and stuff, because it knows that you're resting. I think that's what it does. But in any case, did we answer Julie's stuff? I think so. 

Gin Stephens: I think so, yeah. I'm sending positive thoughts your way, Julie, because I get it. Again, you're just like, “What's happening to me?” Because you can hear all about it, but I was like, “Yeah, but that's not going to happen to me." Okay. No, it will. It's going to all the young people including you, Melanie. Just wait. 

Melanie Avalon: I honestly feel, especially, when I had the mercury toxicity, I think it did a number on my hormones. I feel I experienced a lot of the hormonal type effects that I'll probably experience. 

Gin Stephens: Oh, yes. You've already been down that road.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Because I do hear stories, especially, in books I read of people who don't have symptoms in perimenopause and menopause. That's what I'm hoping for but we'll see. 

Gin Stephens: I think I went through it pretty well. In general, it wasn't debilitating. But everyone's heard me talk about struggling with my sleep, and that was when wine started to be more of a problem for me. If I wanted to get a good night's sleep, I had to not do a lot of drinking. 

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Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Sarah, and her subject is "So discouraged." Sarah said, “Hey, gals. Longtime lover of y'all, and the podcast, and all your things. Hope you can talk me off this ledge and troubleshoot. I'll try to be brief. I've been doing it for maybe four years off and on, not while pregnant, etc. But most recently, I've been 19:5 most days since about March. I eat what I like, but thanks to appetite correction, it's whole real foods about 98% of the time. I fast on weekends too. I open my window early if my body tells me to. I do drink a glass or two of wine because it's literally the thing I look forward to at the end of the day when the kids go to bed. I'm home by myself with three kids. Husband is an ICU travel nurse who works out of town. Thanks, COVID. Other stats: 45 years old, 5’5", current weight 187, goal 145. Medications taken for anxiety, depression, allergies, and high blood pressure. I do kettlebells for 30 minutes three to four times a week and cardio, which is dancing two to three times a week. I have seven-year-old twins and a two-year-old. 

Here's the ledge. I weighed myself this morning because I've joined a work weight loss program and that's part of the program, to weigh yourself. You work with a health coach, etc. I still weigh over what I want to weigh. I hate looking at my body in the mirror. I have that post C-section apron, and I'm 45, cellulite comes with the territory, right? I don't take progress pics because I can't bear looking at myself and my clothes aren't fitting any differently. I've had my hormones and other levels checked and everything except my vitamin D was fine, I'm supplementing. I'm crying while I'm typing this. I'm so discouraged. I was hoping to drop some weight and nothing is moving. I'm so disgusted with my body. I'm ready to go by all devices, and try all the quack junk, or just give up and be fat. Thanks for all you do,” Sarah. And Sarah, I hear your discouragement through this whole thing. I want to give you a big hug. First of all, I'm giving you a big hug. Imagine the hug right this minute. A hug, big hug. 

Melanie Avalon: I'm so I'm so, so sorry to hear this. It's a very emotional email, and I feel we don't get quite as many emails that are this intense but I know it's something that I think a lot of people experience. So, I applaud Sarah for writing us about it, because she talks about wanting to go get devices and try all the things. Sarah, I feel like you're looking for the solution, this is going to sound cheesy, but outside of yourself, and what if maybe the solution isn't outside of yourself? I think there's a lot that you could benefit from the mental work here and your perspective of everything that you're experiencing. I had a really good episode with Amy Johnson, who wrote The Little Book of Big Change. That episode was really amazing for reframing everything that you're experiencing, and then I just recorded with her again, and I think it might be out by the time this comes out. So, that episode is going to be coming out October 1st. So, it'll be coming out a little bit after this airs, but we'll go ahead and put a link in the show notes to it, and it's for her new book called Just a Thought. I think listening to those, you might find very, very helpful. I have a lot of thoughts. Gin, do you want to start, though? 

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I have some thoughts as well, and I'm going to pinpoint two things that might be getting in the way of your weight loss, and one of them is your allergy medication. Antihistamines can cause weight gain. If you're taking an antihistamine every single day, that could be just something to look at and think about. I'm going to say the one thing that Sarah does not want me to say, do what I'm going to say, Melanie?  

Melanie Avalon: I think you're going to say the wine.  

Gin Stephens: I'm going to say the wine because I'm going to talk about my own body. For me, that's a huge, huge, huge difference. It sounds like you're drinking a glass or two of wine every day when the kids go to bed, and if you say that is the only thing you're looking forward to, I would find something else to look forward to. Something else some other self-care ritual because I get how hard it is when your kids are a little, boy, do I get it. Seven-year-old twins and a two-year-old, it is intense. But for me, when I was losing weight 2014 to 2015, I stopped drinking and you've already got the right diet with real whole foods 98% of the time. Your eating window is in check. But I stopped the wine and no drinking, I did it for about 10 weeks. Boom, accelerated my weight loss like crazy. Like crazy. Just from all the data that I had for all the time that I was losing weight and still weighing myself, there was a huge correlation with alcohol and what my weight did. So, I would experiment with that.  

You may want to read the book, This Naked Mind, by Annie Grace. It's a powerful book. It really helped me think about my own relationship with alcohol, and I'm not saying you have a problem with alcohol at all, but I was drinking a glass or two of wine every single day as well. Stopping that has made such a positive difference in how I feel. Annie Grace does a better job explaining it than me. She's the expert when it comes to this topic, but give that book a try and read it with an open mind. She doesn't tell you how to stop drinking, but she wants you to examine your own statements and thoughts around it. The way it came through here is that, you wrote literally in capital letters showing me you have really strong emotions. You do not want to give up this wine. So, think about why you don't, and you may find that is the secret sauce that makes a huge difference, the giving it up. Give it a try and see. That would be my advice. 

Melanie Avalon: It's so interesting, and just goes back to how individual we all are, because for me, wine has no effect on weight gain for me. If anything, I feel I probably maintain a lower weight when I'm drinking wine, which is really interesting. If I had to focus on one thing-- Well, first of all, I love everything that Gin drew attention to with the emotional aspects surrounding the wine, because I think wine is such a wonderful thing for a lot of people. 

Gin Stephens: I love wine. 

Melanie Avalon: [laughs] Yeah, I think people can look forward to it, and it can have a very healthy place in people's lives emotionally. But when it becomes the thing that you're looking forward to for relief, I just get a little bit nervous about its role in your emotional health surrounding it. I would want it to be an additive and something that enhances your life without feeling like you have to have it.  

If I were to focus on one thing to jumps-- what I will say. I know this is ironic, because Gin just suggested not drinking wine but I do want to say, if you do drink wine and you are going to continue drinking wine every night, I would definitely, definitely, definitely drink Dry Farm Wines. I feel so strongly about this. It's going to be lower alcohol, lower sugar, organic, free of toxins, and compared to conventional wines, I think you might experience a massive difference if you're experiencing any negative effects from the wine, and you can get a bottle for a penny at dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast.  

That said, if I were to focus on something to jumpstart the weight loss, I would focus on the eating what you like, and maybe try eating what you like within a macro paradigm if you haven't done that already. I know you're eating whole foods, but I don't know what those are, your body might respond really well to either low carb, high fat. It doesn't have to be high fat, but either a low carb or a high carb-low fat approach. I think there's really a magic that can be experienced in following one of those macros strictly. People experience weight loss doing that without fasting. So, when coupled with fasting, it can often really, really help. Focusing on protein as the foundation of your meal, I think, is really great for providing satiety, providing calories that are not going to turn into fat, they're going to be used to build and support your body. They're going to encourage, support your metabolism, and then also let you more likely be in a calorie deficit while being thoroughly nourished. So, having protein as your main thing and then trying either the low carb or the low-fat approach. 

I think if you haven't done that, I think you might see a massive change. If you haven't tried that yet at all, there's actually a lot of potential. Like a lot of potential. So, I'm actually very, very excited for you. And the great thing is, if you haven't tried it, that's two options you can try. I would give-- if one doesn't work, you can try the other. If you do try one though, I would give it a substantial amount of time to see if it's working for you. 

Gin Stephens: Really, as far as the wine goes, you can have something else in a class that feels festive. I love to have coconut water in a wine glass. I have that very frequently during my window. I found I just wanted to drink something that wasn't water, black coffee, plain tea out of a pretty wineglass. 

Melanie Avalon: See, that's so interesting, because it's just goes to show how different we are. If I were to replace wine with coconut water, I would probably gain weight for sure. 

Gin Stephens: Really? Coconut water doesn't-- Yeah, I love coconut water.  

Melanie Avalon: It's pretty sugary, right?  

Gin Stephens: It's not. I don't think so. No, it's not.  

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I thought it was. For me, wine has a really nice effect, especially, wearing a CGM, has a really nice effect on my blood sugar. But in any case, the biggest thing here, Sarah, is I just want to encourage you that you're not destined to be stuck in the state. The state isn't even something-- This is going to sound silly, but it's not even a problem. What I mean by that is, everything that you're experiencing is just your experience at this moment, and things change, they always change. It's literally impossible for things not to change. So, there's nothing to be scared about as far as thinking that you're going to be here forever. Things do change. They will change. You can try things, you can make choices and things can move in a different direction, and everything that you're experiencing, it's okay. It's okay. I really think that you can see some changes if you look at the food. Anything else for her? 

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it. We're rooting for you, Sarah. Get back with us if you try some things and see what your sweet spot is. 

Melanie Avalon: I feel like a broken record, because I suggest all of this stuff so often, but it's just because I really think it can be effective. If you really want to supercharge, if you want to try the low carb route, I would not embrace the idea of all the fat. You don't have to eat a lot of fat to enter ketosis. You just have to go low carb. So, if you have the weight to lose and you want to try low carb, I would go low carb. I would not focus on adding lots of fat. If you do add fat, I would add something like MCT oil, specifically C8 only. I can put a link in the show notes to the one that I like. That is a fat that you could add that is very stimulating of metabolism in your eating window, not in your fast, is very unlikely to actually be stored as fat and it can actually help you lose fat, if you try the low carb approach. I'm really curious what she's saying about the quack junk when she's talking about trying. 

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't think he's talking about anything we talked about but the stuff that you see all over the place like the weight loss fads. Not anything we're promoting. You don't need any of those quack things that are out there. You definitely don't. I really don't think there's anything you can buy. Even the things we like that can have positive benefits on your health are not necessary for weight loss. 

Melanie Avalon: Actually, I know this is controversial. I do think there are certain-- things that are marketed as weight loss pills, I think there are certain compounds out there that if you took them in a fasted state would catalyze fat burning, but I just think they're so misconstrued and how weight loss pills work, most of them have lots of crappy ingredients, and additives, and safety issues. There's not really a practical, realistic way of implementing this. I do think scientifically, certain compounds can help support fat burning. But there's nothing I can actually like straight up suggest. In any case, anything else?  

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's all.  

Melanie Avalon: One other thing. If Sarah doesn't feel comfortable taking pictures of herself, I think that's totally fine. I just wouldn't stress about that. 

Gin Stephens: You definitely want to do what feels right to you. I'm not going to say everyone must take photos.  

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I was wondering if you've got questions about that before.  

Gin Stephens: Well, the reason I would encourage you to take photos even though you don't want to look at them right now is because one day, you're going to be glad you have them. That's the only thing. Right now, maybe you don't like taking them and you don't like looking at them, but one day, you'll be like, “Oh, my gosh, I'm so glad I have these photos.” You can save them in the hidden roll in your camera, you can google how to do that, so you don't have to look at them when you're scrolling along. You can hide in that hidden folder, and then just go to them, “I have some photos of me in that hidden folder,” and it's not photos I share with people or what I share with people, but you can really see how your body is changing. Especially with the kettlebells that she's doing and the cardio-- I think I talked about this last week. She says her clothes aren't fitting any differently, but with the way clothes are right now, you can change a lot, and your clothes, you can't tell it in your clothes by the way they're fitting, but you wouldn't be able to tell it in a photo. I'm not going to say you absolutely must take photos, but I would encourage you to get past that and think of it as, "I'm going to really be able to tell a difference when I look again in a month and wear the same clothes," and you will probably be pleasantly surprised.  

Melanie Avalon: Yes. I like that. Sorry, I just realized one thing I totally missed. Huge. This is huge. The medications for the anxiety and the depression. Those could be playing a major, major, major role. 

Gin Stephens: I only mentioned the allergy medication but you're right. Huge. 

Melanie Avalon: I don't know what you're taking specifically. If it's an SSRI or something, there's a lot of clinical literature on weight gain on those medications. And also, what's really interesting is a lot of the studies find a long-term effect. People will go on these medications, gain weight, go off the medications and the effects seem to last. They don't know why that is, but it seems to for a lot of people change something. Like in the hypothalamus, your metabolism something. That could be playing a factor. I don't say that to discourage you, I say it to know that if you feel your efforts aren't working, to keep in mind-- it's kind of like what we're talking about the beginning. It's not necessarily all you. The hormones, and the things in your body are very intense driving factors. But it's encouraging because you can set up an environment knowing that will work in your favor. 

Gin Stephens: Just feeling like you're not having to take the blame, that's the thing. I can remember all those years when I was struggling with obesity, and feeling like I must be weak, there's something wrong with me, why can't I do this, this must be my fault. Because we're conditioned to feel that way. Well, if you just do x, y, z, why can't you just do x, y, z? So, you feel like there's something wrong with you, like morally wrong with you. When really, it might be something that's going on physically behind the scenes and it's not your conscious fault, and that can give you relief, instead of feeling it's a failing on your part. You just understand, “Okay, this is what my body's doing right now.” Of course, we would not encourage you to just go off medication for anxiety or depression. No, definitely not. That's not what we're saying at all, or even allergy medication, but to understand the link, and when you understand the link, you're like, “Well, now, that makes sense. Now, it makes sense that I can't lose the weight.” 

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, we feel for you, Sarah. Let us know how it goes. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode228, and we will put links in the show notes to everything that we talked about there. There's a link I wanted to mention, because we talked about LMNT a few times throughout this episode, and you can get a free sampler pack completely free at drinklmnt.com/ifpodcast. So, that's a really great offer. You can get all of the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuff. 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. Lastly, you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast. I am @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens, and I think that is everything. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?  

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.  

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful and 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 podcast, Intermittent Fasting Stories, and the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. The music was composed by Leland Cox. See you next week. 

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