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Nov 29

Episode 189: Cholesterol, Chronically High Insulin, APOE4, Iodine, Supplements, Hypothyroidism, Hair Loss, Weak Nails, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 189 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:

 PREP DISH: Prep Dish is an awesome meal planning service which sends you weekly grocery and recipe lists, so you can do all your meal preparation at once, and be good to go for the week! It's perfect for the IF lifestyle! And better yet, the meals are all gluten free or Paleo, which is fantastic if you're already doing so, but also a wonderful way to "try out" gluten free or Paleo with delicious meals, and no feelings of restriction!! We can't recommend them enough! Get A Free 2 week trial At prepdish.com/ifpodcast!

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BIOPTIMIZERS: Get Bioptimizer's Ultimate Immunity Stack, With 3 Products Which Contain Over 18 Natural Herbs And Probiotic Blends Formulated To Fight And Eliminate Bad Bacteria And Repair Compromised Gut Lining! For A Limited Time Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save An Extra 10% On The Immunity Protection Stack!

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - PREP DISH: Free Subscription! Get a free 2 week trial At Prepdish.com/ifpodcast! You'll get weekly gluten-free and Paleo grocery and recipe lists!

2:40 - 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!

The Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Episode #68 - Glenn Livingston, Ph.D.

14:30 - Listener Q&A: Tricia - Curious

Why We Get Sick: The Hidden Epidemic at the Root of Most Chronic Disease―and How to Fight It (Benjamin Bikman)

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

28:00 - KOMUSO SHIFT: Go To komusodesign.com And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST for 30% Off!!

Get 10% Off Antrantil With Code IFP

Get 10% Off Magbreakthrough With Code IFPODCAST

Get 10% Off Sleep Remedy With Code MELANIEAVALON

Natural Vitality Calm #1 Selling Magnesium Citrate Supplement

39:40 - Listener Q&A: Elden - Food Choices

44:00 - Listener Q&A: Callie - Cold Therapy

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #60 - Wim Hof

45:20 - Listener Q&A: Kash - Falling Hair and Peeling Nails

49:55 - BIOPTIMIZERS: For A Limited Time Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save An Extra 10% On The Immunity Protection Stack!

52:00 - Listener Q&A: Jackie - Subject

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #65 - Mira And Jayson Calton

56:00 - Listener Q&A: Heather - Supplements

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 189 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting? Then this show is for you.

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

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about one of our sponsors Prep Dish. Prep Dish is changing the way thousands of families do mealtime. Here's how it works. Prep Dish thoughtfully crafts a week's worth of gluten-free and paleo meals that feature seasonal ingredients to make the most of your budget, save you time, and surprise your taste buds. You may be thinking, but we aren't gluten-free or paleo. Well, when I have used Prep Dish, my family didn't even notice that the meals were gluten-free because they are based on real food ingredients and the meals were delicious. There's also a keto plan if that's what you're looking for.

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When you join, not only do you have access to this week's menu, but you can choose from past week menus. The dilemma of what's for dinner is solved forever. Go to prepdish.com/ifpodcast for your free trial. Yep, it's totally free. And once you see how easy it makes your life, you won't know what you did without it. That's prepdish.com/ifpodcast.

Melanie Avalon: And one more thing before we jump in. Are you looking for the perfect gifts this holiday season for yourself and others? Well, the average male uses 6 skincare products per day, the average female uses 12. And as it turns out, conventional skincare and makeup is full of toxins. We're talking things like endocrine disrupters, obesogens. Meaning, they literally cause your body to store and gain weight, and even carcinogens linked to cancer. So, while you may be fasting clean, you may be putting compounds directly into your body during the fast, they can be affecting both your health and weight loss. Thankfully, there's an easy solution.

There's a company called Beautycounter and they make an array of skincare makeup products that are extensively tested to be safe for your skin. You can feel good about all of the ingredients that you put on. Their products are even tested multiple times for heavy metals. And for the holiday season, Beautycounter has so many amazing gift sets. These are bundled products at a discount, and they make incredible gifts. Think about it. You can get the products for yourself or for your friends and family and help clean up their skincare, all in disguise of gift-giving. Works pretty well. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you're trying to figure out exactly which products to get, check out my Beautycounter quiz, that's at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz. And for the latest discounts and giveaways from me, definitely get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. All right, now back to the show.

Hi everybody, and welcome. This is episode number one 189 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: Awful.

Melanie Avalon: Awful, why?

Gin Stephens: Well, the time changed last night, and I told you that--

Melanie Avalon: [gasps] I know. It's fabulous.

Gin Stephens: I woke up, rolled over, looked at my clock, and I was like I feel ready to get up and it was 4:15, which is right about when I wake up, but it was an hour earlier, so I had to force myself to stay in bed till it said 5:00 AM, which would have been 6:00 AM normally, so I've been up since 5:00 AM, also known as 6:00 AM in my brain

Melanie Avalon: I thought it was fabulous.

Gin Stephens: No, I did not like it. And so, yeah, tonight, I'm going to be like, it'll be 7:00 PM and I'll be ready to go to bed.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah, tonight it's going to get dark earlier. The goodness continues. I got really excited because I was talking to somebody in a time zone over for one hour, it was the same time.

Gin Stephens: I didn't think about the fact that everybody's time changes at a different time, but it does, because it changed at 2:00 AM. Okay, that's wacky. I never thought of that.

Melanie Avalon: Like this won't happen again for six months, or will it happen in six months?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, well, it's less than six months. They've changed it. They're not spread out six months apart.

Melanie Avalon: Are they?

Gin Stephens: No, I think it's-- okay, now I'm going to look it up. [laughs] It's not exactly six months apart. Let me look. All right, 2021, the time changes. March 14, and then November 7th.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, so it's like four months apart?

Gin Stephens: Yeah. That's the part, that's crazy.

Melanie Avalon: I'm so confused. I don't understand.

Gin Stephens: I know, we do it for four months. That's the part that makes it hard. We change for four months and then we go back. Why? Why? Why?

Melanie Avalon: I feel this will be something that will be gone in 100 years, and they'll be like, “They used to do this really weird thing back in the day.”

Gin Stephens: I hope it's less than 100 years, I'd like it to be gone in 2021.

Melanie Avalon: I can advocate for that.

Gin Stephens: I would like to. It's not good for us. There have been lots and lots of research that shows that people have more health outcomes right after the time changes, car accidents, heart attacks, things like that.

Melanie Avalon: Doesn't happen, though on the next one, like not this one?

Gin Stephens: But I think both of them are bad.

Melanie Avalon: But we get more sleep with this one.

Gin Stephens: Not if you're me. If you're me, you feel so terrible because now you're totally out of sync with the world because you're waking up at 4:00 in the morning, trying to get back to sleep. And then you're forcing yourself to try to stay awake at night because it's not socially done to go to bed at 7:0 PM. So, it really messes with me because I'm out of my normal, what feels good.

Melanie Avalon: So, I vote if we get rid of it, that we keep it the way it is now. Not

Gin Stephens: me. No.

Melanie Avalon: See, that's going to be the big debate, like which one do we keep?

Gin Stephens: Well, one of them is real and one of them is fake.

Melanie Avalon: I hope this is the real one.

Gin Stephens: I can't remember which one is real. One of them is real and one of them's fake. I think the one we change to is the fake one. Right now, we just started the fake one.

Melanie Avalon: This is the fake one.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's called daylight saving. Well, maybe the-- I don't know. I don't know how to know which is which.

Melanie Avalon: It starts on the second Sunday of March and reverts to standard time in November.

Gin Stephens: We're back on standard time. We only get to have standard time for four months?

Melanie Avalon: This is the real time. I'm so excited.

Gin Stephens: I don't like that. That means the real-time I like to wake up at 4:15, 4:30 in the morning.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness, this is the best day ever.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] Oh, gosh.

Melanie Avalon: Wow. I learned so much.

Gin Stephens: I want to stay on the other one.

Melanie Avalon: I want to stay on this one.

Gin Stephens: Okay, we'll see. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I did have a fun fact that I wanted to share with listeners that I thought would be helpful. I interviewed again doctor-- Well, he's a psychologist Glenn Livingston, who wrote Never Binge Again. And, oh my goodness, bringing him on the first time on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast was so popular. I'd have to double-check, it might have had the most downloads of all my episodes yet. Brought him on again for part two Q&A. We were talking about social pressure from people when you're following a certain diet or fasting or something like that. Especially with families, if your mom's like, “But I baked this for you.” He was saying that what it comes down to is the difference. Do you know what an aggregate is versus a-- there's another word.

Gin Stephens: Are they personalities?

Melanie Avalon: No, like a group of people. Listeners, I will put link to in the show notes, but I think it's an aggregate of people don't have the community ties. It's like a group of people in an elevator.

Gin Stephens: You're not connected.

Melanie Avalon: Connected. Yeah. When it's connected, so if it's a family or a friend group or something, we do these different acts to--

Gin Stephens: Can please them?

Melanie Avalon: To form the bonds with the community and when the community is broken apart for a little bit. So, if you haven't seen your family in a while, and then you get back together, they're these things that we do from an evolutionary basis and it's a means to reform that community bond. If you go to a family get together, you go see your family and your mom offers you her-- the cake that she made and  you're fasting, you saying that you don't want to have it can-- it's not so much about the food, it's her act trying to reform the community bond. He said the response to do, if you're fasting and it's something like that with a friend or a family member where they want you to eat something is offer them an alternative thing that they can do that re-welcomes you into the community or reforms the bond. If they're like, “Oh, I baked this thing for you.” You can be like, “Oh, well, I'm not really hungry right now, but I would love to have some of your tea,” or, “But I would love to have--” or it doesn't have to be food related. Something else that is reforming the community bond. Isn't that so interesting?

Gin Stephens: It is what it worked to say, I would like to save it for later.

Melanie Avalon: Probably. Actually, yeah, that probably work too.

Gin Stephens: The Delay, Don't Deny technique.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so the importance of either receiving that or providing an alternate that serve that same purpose.

Gin Stephens: That makes sense. Yeah, but never feel pressured to eat it just because someone else wants you to, just try to find a way to make it work for y'all. I love that idea. I was the queen of taking things home.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, because his main thing was you don't want to just be like, “Oh, I'm just not hungry,” and then not provide like-- you need to provide something that serves the place of what that act was trying to do.

Gin Stephens: Well, like we were at a birthday party for my niece over the summer, and there was cake. Chad and I were both there, and neither of us had eaten yet. They were like, “Would you like some cake?” And I'm like, “No, because I don't want to just open my window with cake.” I wouldn't feel good if I started eating cake on an empty stomach. I was like, “No, but I'll just take some home and we'll have it later after dinner.” We took a comb with us, and then I threw it in the trash because I don't like that kind of cake. Oop. That’s terrible. It was not a homemade cake. I'm not going to say homemade good cake. You know what I mean. It was not a cake. My sister bakes amazing cakes. It was not one of my sister's cakes. It was a grocery store cake.

I did just what you said, I wanted to form that community, and my niece was happy that I took it. Everyone felt happy, but I didn't have to eat it if I didn't want to, but nobody knew. Unless they're listening to the podcast, and now they know. There's nothing wrong with serving at a child's birthday party, serving the kind of cake that the child prefers. I'm not criticizing the cake, in case they are listening.

Melanie Avalon: Especially because they think this episode airs, probably like holiday season-ish. Maybe.  I wonder when this comes out.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. How many weeks ahead are we? I have no idea.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah, this comes out November 30. Thanksgiving already happened.

Gin Stephens: Oh, so Thanksgiving will have been over. We're ahead. Ooh. We're way ahead.

Melanie Avalon: Look at us.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I like that. I just recorded a podcast right before this one that's coming out January 14. Yeah, I'm ahead on that one, too. It's weird because we were like talking about Halloween. And I'm like, “Yes, but now it's 2021.” In my future podcast world where I've recorded 2021 had already happened. Travel to the future. But, yeah, we're actually having Thanksgiving here at my house. This year, we're all going to make sure we're safe.

Melanie Avalon: That reminds me-- I think I'm going to get like ButcherBox’s turkey and just have it, like show up at my mom's house.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's nice.

Melanie Avalon: And then they'll be like, “Oh, I guess we have to use this.”

Gin Stephens: And you would eat that one, but not a standard.

Melanie Avalon: Most of the turkeys like they're pumped with all of this solution.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's 100% true. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: I don't think there are any turkeys at the grocery store that-- I mean, I haven't seen any that are not. And then on top of that, like raised on pasture or organic, hard to find.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think ButcherBox turkey’s a great idea. Of course, by the time this episode comes out, there'll be a different ButcherBox special offer.

Melanie Avalon: That's true.

Gin Stephens: I've learned about that. Now that I am working with ButcherBox for the Life Lessons Podcast, they're like, “Oh, it's always going to be a different offer.” I'm like, “Okay.”

Melanie Avalon: They switch it up a lot. They just had a really good offer. So, hopefully, listeners got on it. It was a free turkey.

Gin Stephens: I'm sure there'll be another great offer.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. It always is.

Gin Stephens: Good time. So, are we ready to get started?

Melanie Avalon: I think so.

Gin Stephens: All right. We have a question from Trisha. The subject is “Curious,” and she says, “I have been doing IF since June for health reasons.” By the way, Trisha, I love that you're doing it for health reasons, that makes me smile. She says, “I don't need to lose any weight, but I am predisposed to diabetes. I'm curious about a few things. Gin, you said you do better with more carbs. Well, so do I. I'm just wondering what tests you did to find that out. My old doctor had me on paleo and I felt horrible. My LDLs went through the roof, and my A1c also went up. I never lost a pound and even gained some. I discovered that I am ApoE3-4. I carry the four-gene that is associated with Alzheimer's and high LDLs.

As my numbers crept up, I dropped my carbs down even lower, I was deathly afraid of getting diabetes. With that change, I felt even worse and my A1c went up even more. I was considered pre-diabetic. I stumbled upon a nutritionist who understood the APOE gene. She told me that I can't eat a high-fat diet and that I actually need more carbs. My life changed after that meeting. I started eating more Mediterranean and felt so much better. My LDLs dropped 50 points, and I'm now a normal A1c. It just proves how genes play such an important role.

I also heard a doctor talk about eating too low of carbs causing an increase of blood sugar, it blew my mind. I know I won't explain it right, but he said something to the effect that too low carbs below 25 will cause sugar to be pulled from the liver and muscles. I'm just wondering if you guys have heard this before?” Do we want to talk about that for a second before we keep reading?

Melanie Avalon: Yes. A lot of things going on here and I feel this is such a big topic, and there are so many opinions on this, and so many camps. I will just tell you my thoughts on the matter. Our cholesterol, and listeners, might be familiar with this, but there's two basic types of cholesterol. There's more than that, but there's LDL and HDL and usually people think of HDL as the “good cholesterol.” Usually, people think of LDL is the “bad cholesterol.” There's more debate within that world because a lot of people especially in the low carb world, the carnivore world, things like that, argue more in favor that LDL itself actually isn't bad that really the key is having a protective HDL and having low triglycerides. It's very confusing.

All of that said APOE, because it's ApoE4, it's a genetic tendency that does have a significant effect on people's LDL levels. And people with it are predisposed to having unhealthy LDL levels and particularly Alzheimer's. I do think people with that gene need to be very careful about their fat intake. I do think in that situation, of course, I'm not a doctor, but I am not that comfortable with a low carb diet if it's high saturated fat, because you can do low carb and not be crazy high and fat. I think a lot of people who do low carb go really high fat route and that's not something I would advocate if you have ApoE4. I'm really happy that she made the change and went higher carb, lower fat and saw a change in her blood work reflected. I think that's great.

Again, the reason I say it's complicated is because a lot of people in the low carb world, the carnivore world, APOE gene aside, often will have very high LDL, but they'll also have very high HDL and the ratio will be something that is seen as healthy. So, there's an ongoing debate about it. I'm actually right now-- I really want to find a really good authority on cholesterol levels in the blood. I want to find somebody who I don't get a sense as biased in either side, like with carbs and fat. If listeners have any recommendations, but I am probably going to do an episode on cholesterol in the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast. Do you have any thoughts about the cholesterol and the fat and all of that?

Gin Stephens: Well, I was going to talk about that, her statement that if you have too low of carbs, it will cause sugar to be pulled from the liver and muscles. She may be talking about just glycogen being released to keep your blood sugar up, that's actually not a bad thing. I just wanted to say that. Your body has a lot of mechanisms in place to keep you at a certain level of blood sugar, all the time coming out of wherever it is.

Melanie Avalon: The sugar being pulled, it's either going to be “pulled,” in which case it's what Gin just said, it's already stored glycogen already in its sugar form, or it can be created. It can be created from protein and glycerol from fat.

Gin Stephens: But she said the word “pulled” that's where I got it from.

Melanie Avalon: For some reason when I read it, I was thinking she was probably talking about it being created, but either case, she says the muscles too, but it's mostly the liver that's doing that. I'm actually right now reading-- Gin, have you read Dr. Benjamin Bikman’s, Why We Get Sick. It's all about insulin. Oh, my goodness. That's what it's about is insulin.

Gin Stephens: Then I don't think so.

Melanie Avalon: It's called Why We Get Sick, the hidden epidemic at the root of most chronic disease and how to fight it. The foreword is actually by Jason Fung.

Gin Stephens: Is the hidden root of it hyperinsulinemia?

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: See, I knew that just from what I've researched as well. They're some kind of journal article that I read when I was researching for Fast. Feast. Repeat. It talked about all the things that were connected to hyperinsulinemia. It blew my mind because at that point, I had no idea. High insulin all the time is not a good thing.

Melanie Avalon: You would love this book then. It came out in July.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, no, I haven't read it.

Melanie Avalon: It's really funny. Two copies of it showed up at my door, like, I didn't order it, but the publisher sent me a copy. And then I'm testing the two CGMs. Levels, one of the companies, they sent me a copy, just randomly, and it happened within two days. I was like, “Oh, my goodness.”

Gin Stephens: You're meant to read that book.

Melanie Avalon: He's coming on the show. It's really, really good so far. I can't wait to bring him on. I have so many questions for him. My only caveat is he's making a very compelling case that insulin, like you just said, that hyperinsulinemia, chronically high insulin levels are-- I mean in the title, he calls it the root cause of most chronic disease, but he talks about how it pretty much every single condition we experience. I mean, he goes through all of them, how they're so closely correlated to insulin resistance.

Gin Stephens: That journal article I read was, it linked so many things to hyperinsulinemia that I was like, “Wow.”

Melanie Avalon: My only question I'm going to ask him is, I think he's trying to posit that it's causal, but I think if it was causal, it would have to be 100% correlation. It would have to be 100% present all the time. I don't know, that's just something I keep thinking about. But it is a very strong connection, like all these, like you just said in that article.

Gin Stephens: You're saying that they're associated, possibly not causal. Although, here's the thing to keep in mind, if it's causal, you would expect that bringing down insulin levels would then have improvement in those things. What's interesting is all the things that I remember reading about in that article, are things that people find improved through intermittent fasting, which lowers insulin, which makes the case for it to be causal because correcting it through intermittent fasting does make those other things better.

Melanie Avalon: It's a really, really, really fascinating book. Why am I talking about this? The reason I brought it up was for her question, the section I just read last night, I'm about halfway through it, but he was talking about something that I had also been talking about when I interviewed Dr. Cate Shanahan for her book, The Fatburn Fix, and that is the crazy, and now I'm realizing, no wonder It's so confusing, regulating blood sugar levels. They're crazy connection that can happen or relationship that can happen between blood sugar, and the liver, and the brain, and the pancreas.

Gin Stephens: There's a lot going on.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. What happens with a lot of people is if blood sugar is high, insulin tries to lower it, so insulin lowers it, so the liver tries to raise it, nobody wins.

Gin Stephens: It's trying to keep it within a range that's healthy. It's all working together, your regulatory and counter-regulatory, and they all have a different goal.

Melanie Avalon: They're not all talking, so the brain will see high blood sugar. So, it's like, “Oh, let's release insulin and lower it.” And then the liver is like, “Oh, raise the blood sugar. Let's release blood sugar.” It can be really hard to keep it stable. I think a lot people get stuck in that, it's almost like a war.

Gin Stephens: Especially in the modern era, when everything's out of whack. It's even harder.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. With insulin resistance, which is what this book is all about as well. Once the receptors aren't responding to insulin, that's when it's even worse because the pancreas is releasing insulin to bring down the blood sugar, but the cells are resistant, so they're not listening. So, then it has to release more.

Gin Stephens: It's a vicious cycle.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, did we answer her question?

Gin Stephens: No, I'm going to go back to where we stopped.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, her question, though about being too low carb.

Gin Stephens: I think that that was going to vary from person to person. Oh, she did ask how I found that out. Well, first of all, I knew it just from the way I felt. I never once lost weight on low carb, my entire life all the time, every time I tried it. Why did I keep trying it? Well, because people told it so well. Everything you read made it sound like, of course, it's going to work. I would try it, try it, try it, and then it wouldn't work, and I felt terrible, the whole time.

I feel better when I eat more of like a Mediterranean kind of a way of eating as well. Lots of beans, I do great with whole grains, lots and lots of veggies, less meat, but some meat, I don't feel great when I have no meat ever either. I think the DNA analysis is still, science is in its infancy. The point why I even talk about it is not because I want everyone to go out and do this XYZ analysis and then eat what they tell you to eat. The reason I like to talk about it is so that you can trust your body and understand we're all different. And so, stop looking for external validation and external plans and instead pay attention to how you feel. When you feel good, you know that your body is doing well. If your health is improving, you know that's working for you.

Trisha mentioned when she was trying to eat according to the way her old doctor had her eating, she gained weight, all of our markers got worse, her A1c went up, that wasn't good. When she switched back to her new nutritionist who understood her genetics, everything got better, her A1C is normal, she probably also feels better. So, anyway, there still isn't like a, “Here's the place we want you to go. Do this DNA analysis and this will tell you exactly what to eat.” No, we're not there yet. It's an interplay between your genes, your gut microbiome, so many other factors. Your insulin levels, they're also are not static, like Melanie and I just talked about. Somebody who has really high insulin levels right now, because of what they've been doing, you get those down over time and that's going to also change the way your body responds to things. So, there's just so many factors, we're not static, and there's no one test that's going to tell you everything. It's all the factors together, and things do change.

Melanie Avalon: That made me think of one other thing. We talked about this before, like they don't really test insulin that much. One thing, Dr. Bikman was saying in his book was that a lazy man's approach to--  well, because there's not really a way to test insulin resistance, but if you can test your fasting insulin and also test your free fatty acids, like the ratio of those can show if you're insulin resistant. And then also, it's scary, but also motivating just how fast insulin-resistant states can happen. Also, how fast changes can happen for the better when it's addressed, as far as like diet and lifestyle. I think it's really motivating.

I just wanted to give an answer to her question though, about too low carb, causing sugar to be pulled from the liver and muscles. So, yes, but in a way, that's supposed to happen, and for some people, it is completely fine, and it doesn't create issues. For some people, it does. Some people I think, go very low carb, they might release blood sugar with more glycolytic activity. Some high-intensity activity and everything's monitored and works well. Some people might go too low carb, and the body sees it as a stress response, it's not properly generating ketones, it's not running on free fatty acids and so it's just continually reverting to trying to produce sugar instead. I don't think that's a healthy state to exist in for a long time.

This is another thing where you just have to-- like Jim was saying about finding what works for you. It just requires a lot of experimentation and seeing how things are going. We were talking before this, we even talk in every other episode about it, so I won't talk too long, but that's why I'm loving wearing a CGM because I'm just learning so much about how my personal blood sugar is responding to different foods and fasting and stress and activities. So, yeah, there's a lot.

Hi, friends, I'm about to tell you about something that can have a truly profound effect on your life and it makes a great gift for yourself and others this holiday as well. Let's talk breathing. I recently read a book called Breath by James Nestor. I had him on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, so I'll put a link to that in the show notes. Basically, breath is energy, and it controls so much of our experience of the world. A lot of us experience stress and anxiety today, and breathing intensely affects that. Anxiety actually comes from a part of the brain called the amygdala, and it warns you of danger to keep you safe. The problem is, it really doesn't know which dangers are real. When activated, it releases adrenaline and cortisol via our sympathetic nerves that increase our breathing patterns to affect our heart rate, sweat glands, and muscle tension.

These short shallow breaths are designed intentionally to give your body more oxygen so that you can fight or flee. The problem is, our release of carbon dioxide drops, and you can actually feel confused or unstable because your body isn't physically using the oxygen. Then your heart beats fast to try to circulate the adrenaline and oxygen to the rest of your body. Your digestion slows down. Everything just basically gets a little bit intense.

We can actually fight back about the confusion of our amygdala through controlled breathing. By slow breathing, it's like our brain realizes that, “Hey, I have time to be doing this slow breathing. I must not be running from a tiger right now.” Through controlled slow breathing, you can actually instantly put your body into a more calm state and you don't even have to really think about it. The problem is that trying to regulate your breathing when you're experiencing the fight or flight mode, panic, anxiety, stress, things like that, can be a little bit difficult because of all the adrenaline, cortisol, and extra oxygen involved. Having a tool to physically ground you can be game-changing. That's why I'm obsessed with the Shift.

It's a beautiful necklace that was engineered using a tested diameter and length to give you a longer exhale. James Nestor’s book Breath, he goes through a lot of breathing exercises. They're really cool and really effective, but you have to do them, you have to do the counting, you have to think about it. With the Shift necklace, you just pull it up to your lips, and because of its design, breathing out through it, automatically forces you into a long exhale. Basically, it makes it super easy to do breathing practices to manage your stress and anxiety. I wear it around my neck and anytime I feel a little bit stressed, I just pull it up to my lips and do some breaths through it.

I actually just bought two more, one for my mom and one for my sister for the holidays. It's such a cool, effective therapeutic practical gift. I love it. And, guys, you can get it for 30% off. Yes, 30% off. This is huge. Just go to komusodesign.com and use the coupon code IFPODCAST, that's K-O-M-U-S-O D-E-S-I-G-N dotcom and use the coupon code IFPODCAST for 30% off and I'll put all this information in the show notes. All right, now back to the show.

Gin Stephens: All right. So, the rest of what she said is, “So, all that being said, I do have a few IF questions. I'm 5’4 and weigh about 105 pounds. I have struggled with my weight for years. I'm finally stable, thanks to a great hormone doctor. I have a very bad gut with IBS-C. I've been gluten-free for over eight years. Since starting IF, my constipation has gotten much worse, seems like when I would eat a little bit in the morning, it would stimulate peristalsis, but now that I don't do that, I have trouble going to the bathroom. I don't really like breakfast. So, I don't want to switch my eating window. Like you guys, I love my evening meal.

One other quick question is that I still crave sweets. I can't seem to get past that. I'm just wondering if I need to open my window sooner or tighten it. I usually open around 3:00 or a little earlier. I quit eating around 7:30. Oh, I also have Hashimoto’s if that makes any difference. I've read WWW, DDD, and FFR. You guys are amazing. Thank you, Trisha in Texas.” And by the way, that is What When Wine, Delay, Don't Deny and Fast. Feast. Repeat.

Melanie Avalon: I love the letters. Okay, so constipation questions. I talk about this a lot, but it can be hard when you're on the constipation train to keep things flowing. So, a lot of things you can try is obviously adjusting your food choices and seeing what foods work for you. If you have bloating with it-- Oh, she has IBS-C. Yeah, I would definitely try Atrantil, it can be a game-changer. It's natural plant compounds that are specifically made for the type of bacteria that are often overgrowing with that condition, that produce methane and slow gut motility, so that's at lovemytummy.com/ifp with the coupon code IFP. As far as keeping things moving naturally, magnesium can be really great. I like Natural Calm, also BiOptimizer has a magnesium supplement. Those are my main recommendations for constipation.

Gin Stephens: Magnesium is just the key that works for me. I've been trying to shift around the times that I was taking it. I was taking something else at bedtime. I was taking Sleep Remedy at that time. Yeah. I didn't want to take Sleep Remedy and magnesium. I just felt it too much to be taken at one time. So, it's like, “Well, I'll just stop taking the magnesium,” or, “I'll take at different times.” I did notice getting a little more sluggish again. I'm back to taking the magnesium at bedtime and everything's back to how it should be. It just really makes a difference for my body. My body likes magnesium at bedtime.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, my order with those two because I take Sleep Remedy as well which is a natural sleep supplement formulated to help your brain instigate the sleep state. So, it's not a pharmaceutical or anything. Since I eat so late, I take it when I'm opening my window actually. And then I have magnesium after, and I feel that keeps things going really well. For people who are interested in Sleep Remedy, you can get at melanieavalon.com/sleepremedy, the coupon MelanieAvalon, but the magnesium. Vitamin C can also do it as well. Some people do like high dose vitamin C. Then her second question, craving sweets. Do you have thoughts about that craving sweets?

Gin Stephens: Well, I mean, I think that it's natural to crave sweets. We're wired to crave sweets, people act like it's a flaw to crave sweets. There's nothing wrong with you if you crave sweets, and I don't think that that's true. So, if you crave sweets, stop beating yourself up over it. It's not a problem that you crave them, there's not something wrong with you. Instead, if you feel that you're choosing things that are not high quality, that would be the problem. If you're like eating a pack of cookies, that would be a problem. Instead, try to meet that sweet craving with real foods. For me dates. I've talked about this before, Medjool dates. They're a great way to close my window. They're sweet. I don't need a lot of them. I don't know binge on them. I just eat a couple of the dates, that meets my sweet craving. And then my window’s closed and I go about my evening. I'm not like, “Oh, darn it, I'm craving sweets.” I'm like, “Alright, I would like something sweet,” then I have it. We crave salty. I mean, we crave things.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think there's probably a difference too. I don't know if she's craving in her eating window or if she's getting sugar cravings while fasting, which I feel are two different experiences. But if it's during the eating window, I agree that whole food forms of that. She's not doing low carb, if she's doing you know Mediterranean and if she can get that sweet fix with fruit and things like that, I completely support that.

My mind is being blown a little bit. I just read Dr. Alan Christianson’s The Thyroid Reset Diet, it comes out in January because a lot of people supplement iodine for thyroid issues. He actually thinks iodine overload is the cause of most thyroid issues today, and he makes a very compelling case, like very compelling. Basically, the idea that iodine is helpful. It started when-- because if you overdose iodine, it shuts down the thyroid. Back in the day, they found that really high dose iodine supplementation would essentially fix things-- fixed like hyperthyroidism because it would shut down the thyroid. There was something about-- it would help something with cancer, and the guy who found this connection thought it was because the body needed iodine. But really, it was probably because that excess iodine was shutting down stuff because it was too much. Now we're not really iodine deficient ever since we started iodizing salt and all of that. It's just really, really interesting, like the studies on what excess iodine does and how people on low iodine diets often can reverse Hashimoto’s. So, I'm not saying like, “Do this,” but now I'm rethinking Hashimoto’s completely and iodine. Stay tuned for that.

Gin Stephens: That's going to confuse a lot of people. This is the whole problem with-- it's like, “Oop, deficient in iodine.” “Oop, sorry, it actually had too much.” Then you're just like, “Never mind, I'm just going to eat.”

Melanie Avalon: After reading his book, the amount of iodine we need, our thyroid needs is really, really small. Iodine is a really unique nutrient because it's basically just used by the thyroid, the rest of the body doesn't need it. And then, B, it's one of the only nutrients where we only needed a really small amount. And anything beyond that is actually toxic, compared to most nutrients where it had a much broader range.

Gin Stephens: Right. Like with magnesium as an example. If you take more magnesium than your body needs, you excrete it.

Melanie Avalon: Just flushes you out.

Gin Stephens: It flushes you out, which is why the last time I had bloodwork done, my magnesium levels are great. And so that is probably one reason why it keeps me regular.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so it's a really big paradigm shift.

Gin Stephens: And you know what, that just made me think of something. The people who take magnesium and say it doesn't do anything for them with constipation. I wonder if it's because they just start deficient. Their bodies uptaking all of it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they haven't reached the bowel tolerance point. That's quite possible.

Gin Stephens: I just thought of that. I'm like, “Well, they're-- ding, ding, ding. That's probably why.”

Melanie Avalon: Did I tell you about my iodine supplementation story?

Gin Stephens: Mm-hmm.

Melanie Avalon: Gin, I've experimented with a lot of--

Gin Stephens: What?

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: I'm shocked.

Melanie Avalon: Lot of things. All of that said, when I interviewed Joe Cohen, who makes the SelfDecode genetic testing that Gin and I both done before, he said he had the same experience. Iodine is the only supplement where I tried it and it created a reaction that scared me so bad, I'm never touching it ever again.

Gin Stephens: What did it do?

Melanie Avalon: I took it orally, and my eyes turned bloodshot red.

Gin Stephens: I think I've heard you say that before. I think you've told me this story.

Melanie Avalon: To the point that I was like, I don't know if I can go to work, and it lasted for like two days.

Gin Stephens: Oh, gosh.

Melanie Avalon: I was like, there is something going on here with iodine. I've been really skeptical or curious about it for a while. Reading his book was interesting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that does sound like it would be interesting. All right, we're ready for the next one.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Food choices. This comes from Elden. We get such interesting and beautiful names--

Gin Stephens: We do.

Melanie Avalon: -on this show. Elden. She says, “I am very new to IF and I've started listening to your show. I just finished Episode Five about coffee, and almost all of your shows you state while in the window, you can eat what you want. So, if you're in the window, can you drink a cup of coffee with milk? While in the window, are you trying to control your insulin levels? Or does it matter?” Oh, my goodness, I totally forgot to put this in here. Okay. She says, “I'm trying IF for weight loss and ultimately for lifestyle.”

Gin Stephens: All right, great question. Some people do get confused about insulin because they think we talk about-- in Fast. Feast. Repeat. I specifically give you three goals for fasting and the clean fast. And one of them is to keep insulin levels low during the fast because we're trying to tap into our fat source for fuel and keep our insulin levels low, will help us with that. So then people say, “Oh, insulin must be, ‘bad,’ but it's not.” What we don't want is chronic high levels of insulin 24/7, all the time, we don't want hyperinsulinemia, just like we were talking about with Dr. Bikman’s book, talking about high insulin not being a good thing. During your eating window, you're going to have an insulin response to food. If you prefer to have your coffee with milk in your eating window, then you absolutely can do that.

We're not seeing insulin as an enemy that we must never release because your body's going to release insulin anyway when you're eating. Keep your insulin as low as you can during the fast. And then during your eating window, eat what you prefer. Now, one caveat is if you know you have really high levels of fasting insulin, because you maybe talk to your doctor into giving you a test and you know it's high, then maybe you do want to work on getting your insulin down, temporarily changing up your diet for that, good work. But in the meantime, don't think of insulin as an enemy.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, insulin is definitely not the enemy, there still could be an issue of excess insulin. If you're insulin resistant, and you're eating, even if you're eating like in a fasting window, if you're insulin resistant and what you're eating is causing the pancreas to have to release so much insulin, and then it's making the cells more insulin resistant. That could be an issue.

Gin Stephens: That would not be a good thing.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Doing intermittent fasting is going to help with insulin issues. As far as what you're eating, I have not read the part of the book yet where he talks about practically what to eat. I'm excited to see what he says, but I do think that as far as macronutrients go and when it comes to insulin that a lot of people do find that either a lower carb, high fat diet, or a high fat, low carb diet often can make fuel partitioning more effective and help with insulin levels. Then obviously, processed foods and things like that are going to be pretty taxing on insulin release and the pancreas, so you can still make choices within your eating window to support, not crazy high insulin levels, and high blood sugar levels. But as far as like what you're focusing on, we're focusing on keeping insulin low during the fast.

Gin Stephens: Right. I want you to focus on, when you're new to IF, in my 28 Day FAST Start, Fast. Feast. Repeat., I want you to start intermittent fasting and those 28 days and your goal is to nail the clean fast. That's it. Nail the clean fast, you're not trying to also change everything you're eating at the same time. And then as you get to the end of the adjustment period as you go on to live your life as an intermittent faster, you can start tweaking your food choices to see what makes you feel better. Melanie does that to this day, so do I. I recently learned how much better I feel without alcohol, and I'm still mad about that. [laughs]

Last night was Halloween, and my husband's like, “You want some wine?” I'm like, “Yes and no,” at the same time, so I didn't have any wine and it was okay. And it was fine, I felt great. So, there's that.

Melanie Avalon: I'll drink the wine for you.

Gin Stephens: Drink my wine.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Shall we go on to the next question?

Gin Stephens: Yes, this is from Cali, and the subject is Cold Therapy. I'm a little afraid to read it. She says, “Hello. Love the podcast. I've heard Melanie talk about cold therapy. Is there a specific episode that goes into detail or an article I can read? I'd love more info. Thank you, Cali.”

Melanie Avalon: Short question from Cali, short answer to Cali. Yes. I just aired the episode with the incredible Wim Hof who is known as The Iceman and this is what he does. I'll put a link to that in the show notes. It's at melanieavalon.com/cold. We talk all about it, cold showers, ice baths, all the stuff. Gin, it's getting cooler now, outside.

Gin Stephens: Boo. I know, I'm wearing my Uggs right now, and I'm wearing long pants and I'm also wearing a turtleneck kind of a shirt.

Melanie Avalon: I'm wearing my halter dress, and I wear it outside and it's so exciting. I parked far away, I don't know it's not that cold. This is the South. So, it's like 60s or--

Gin Stephens: I know, that's so cold. I'm freezing.

Melanie Avalon: I wear my halter dress and I park far away so that I have to walk in the cold.

Gin Stephens: Ugh, no. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: All right. We have a question from Kash. The subject is “Falling Hair and Peeling Nails” and Kash says, “Hi, Melanie and Gin. Thank you for the podcast. It is an informative, entertaining and the best part not preachy, you both make a great team. I've been intermittent fasting for the last two years with a break for about six weeks last year when I had meningitis. Once I recovered, I got back in the saddle to say, it has worked well for me. However, I am losing copious amounts of hair and my nails, fingers, and toes are cracking and peeling. The hair loss has been my hairline and I am super self-conscious of it.

I'm an avid listener of your podcast, but the IF podcast is my favorite. I have incorporated many other lifestyle changes which have helped me tapping meditation and red-light therapy to name a few of my favorites. I hope you can help me with any suggestions with my current dilemma. I wait patiently to hear your next podcast.” Oh, “from Durban, South Africa.”

Gin Stephens: I love it.

Melanie Avalon: Kindest regards, Kash, or it might be Kosh, I don't know how to say it.

Gin Stephens: I love to hear from international listeners and those from just down the street, all listeners. But it really makes me happy to think of people all over the globe listening to our podcast. I just really love that. Anyway, I'm not going to say whether that's related to intermittent fasting or not, because it might not be. Now there is something that can happen with intermittent fasting that could cause hair loss. Specifically, if you're new to intermittent fasting and your body perceives it as a stress, you can have a hair loss that lags behind the stress by a few months. And that kind of hair loss, your hair will generally grow back, but you're not new to intermittent fasting. You've been doing it for two years with a break for six weeks last year when you had meningitis. So, I would not think that the intermittent fasting was the cause. I would look back a few months and see what happened.

I mean, of course, we've had this pandemic, but look back a few months and see if that's the cause of your hair loss, then that stress is what caused it. Also, however, the fingernails, that's the part that makes me think that maybe there's something even more underlying this, I would not just say, “Hey, this is intermittent fasting,” because there are many reasons that your nails might start to peel or become brittle. Some of them can do with certain deficiencies. For example, iron deficiency, if you have anemia, then that could cause this. I would get your blood tested, see if you could be deficient in something, it could be related to thyroid issues, other diseases. So, I would definitely work with your health practitioner and see and I would not say, “Oops, this is just something from the fasting,” because actually, fasting itself should not cause you to lose hair, or to have the peeling, cracking nails. There could indirectly be relationship with the hair. Like I said, if it was your body perceiving, beginning fasting as a stress, but you're not new to fasting. So, I would not think that was the case. I would look for a cause with your doctor. Melanie, what do you have to say?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I agree, what you said about. If it's perceived as a stress, I think it could relate to hair loss. I think that's an individual case basis. I agree, I think fingernails are one of the best places where we can pretty much see nutritional deficiencies occur. Oftentimes, it's hard to see that happening on the inside, but I think it shows up pretty often with our nails. So, I would say focusing on the food choices and working with that practitioner to figure out where you might be missing with the nutrients.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Again, people might say, “Oh well, fasting’s made me nutritionally deficient.” And really, it's not that. We can get the nutrients we need and an eating window. But it's just a matter of figuring out, what deficiencies you have and why? Different things can cause you to be deficient in your body not using the nutrients appropriately. Like if something's going on in your gut, you might not be absorbing things properly. So, yeah, get that checked out.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really glad you brought that last point up because the leaky gut thing. Sometimes it's not so much that you're not physically putting the nutrients into your mouth as much as you're not absorbing them because of gut issues.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Someone might say, “Oop, it's fasting.” No. If you're eating nutritious foods in your eating window, and your body is functioning properly, you should be able to get the nutrients that you need to not be deficient.

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We have a question from Jackie. The subject is Supplements. She says, “Hello. Finding this podcast has been wonderful. And I have been getting such great information about IF from you ladies. I've been doing IF for the past five months and it has really helped with my weight loss. I typically am fasting for 18 to 20 hours and eating for four to six hours. My question is regarding supplements that you have to take multiple times a day. I currently take a probiotic once a day, and fish oil and curcumin.” How do you say that?

Melanie Avalon: I think people say both ways, curcumin and curcumin.

Gin Stephens: All right, well, just whatever that is, twice a day.

Melanie Avalon: I usually say curcumin.

Gin Stephens: Okay. “I have read that each of those is better taken with food, but when your eating window is short, how can you split up the supplements to gain the most benefit? How long does it take your body to absorb? Thanks so much.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Jackie, great question. So, I keep referring people off to other episodes, but I just interviewed the Caltons and they wrote a book called Rebuild Your Bones. They're all about micronutrient deficiency and vitamin deficiency and timing of supplements, and competing nutrients, and how certain nutrients compete with other nutrients. We specifically talked about how to get proper nutrient absorption and the timing of it if you're doing intermittent fasting or one meal a day situation. So, I'll put a link to that in the show notes. It's at melanieavalon.com/bones.

All of that said, to answer your question, with the ones that you're taking specifically., so like a probiotic, I would just take with food, the fish oil also, I would say with food with although what's really interesting is this kind of goes against the clean fast idea, but I interviewed Joel Greene like I said recently, and he talks about how taking omega-3s while fasting actually up-regulates, I don’t know certain processes that are really beneficial, and it was really fascinating. That said, I'm personally a little bit on the fence about omega-3 supplementations anyway because I think the main thing to be addressing is reducing omega-6, it's like we say that you can't out exercise a bad diet. It's hard to out omega-3, a high omega-6 load, which is what we're trying to do today. We're taking omega-3 supplements. So rather than focusing on fish oil, I think it can be really beneficial to just focus on reducing your omega-6es. So that's found in things like seed oils, vegetable oil, canola oil, corn, sunflower, as well as a lot of nuts and seeds.

I actually do take a krill oil though supplement, and I take it when I'm opening my window. Curcumin, I actually just will add turmeric to food. Again, you could probably just take it with food, but you're talking about like, when your eating window is short, how do you split up the supplements to gain the most benefit? I think for things where it is a supplement and listen to the episode, like I said with the Caltons because we talk about this, but there is something about absorption and when things will absorb best. I personally when I'm taking supplements, I take them usually at the beginning when I'm opening with my food, but yeah.

Gin Stephens: I also want to say that probably the people who take this twice a day, or the supplement people, they want you to take it twice a day. They're telling you to take it twice a day. Do you really need to be taking it twice a day? I doubt it. Take it with your food and fit it in like that.

Melanie Avalon: Caltons, it's really interesting because they think a lot of like supplements on the market, especially multivitamins just have ratios that they'll have competing nutrients, so they cancel each other out. They have too high doses or too low doses. And so they're really specific about like when you take supplements and what you take and when you take it.

Gin Stephens: Yep. All right.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, super quick question. This comes from Heather. Heather says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. With a clean fast, is it possible to use white balsamic vinegar in sparkling water? I know it is okay for diabetics, as the acidic acid mitigates the effect of the small amount of carbs in the balsamic vinegar, by slowing down the gut response to those sugars. I wonder if the slight sweet or sour taste might trigger an insulin response, which is not what we want and to clean fast. Thank you for your advice and all your fasting guidance.”

Gin Stephens: Yes, I do not recommend any kind of vinegar whatsoever during the fast. There's no need to have it during the fast. It's a flavor, to food flavor. Nope, keep that in your eating window. We know that vinegar is effective when used with food, but, nope, save that for your eating window. All vinegar.

Melanie Avalon: To that point, we probably could have talked about this earlier, so I'm glad that we're ending with this because we're talking about insulin and blood sugar in your eating window. A lot of people do find that adding things like vinegar to their eating window can help with the blood sugar response help with all of that. When taken with food, it can be really helpful, but when taking fasted, two things, Gin just talks about the taste of it and all of that. And then also there's the possibility that it could might drop you too low and make you have a reactive hypoglycemia or a low blood sugar response. Yes, I would say err on the side of no vinegar during the fast, but I'm glad we brought it up because that was something we could have mentioned for something to experiment with, with your food is adding vinegar, especially having like a higher carb meal.

Gin Stephens: When I put vinegar on my fries. We did that the other night. My dishwasher was broken, did I talk about that?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Well, I’ve got the new one. It's here and I'm so excited. Did I tell you that they brought it, then they couldn't install it that day and I almost lost it? I didn't lose it. Luckily they left before I knew what was happening. So I was having a call with somebody while when they came, when they were there to my husband dealt with it. They showed up with the dishwasher. It had been a month that I've been without a dishwasher. Okay, almost a month. I've been hand washing my dishes and I was so excited. I had all my meal plan meals that I was going to cook and I'm like, right, which ones don't need a lot of dishes, so I used all those first. And I was so excited. I was going to cook something for dinner that required me to use lots of dishes to cook it, but that was okay, I was going to have a dishwasher.

They show up, they drop the dishwasher off in the kitchen and then they leave, while I'm on this phone call. I get off the phone call, and I'm like, “What's happening?” A dishwasher, in the box, in the middle of my kitchen. For real, just sitting there. I'm like, “What's happening?” Chad said, “Oh, they had to go. They didn't bring the hose to install.” I'm like, “What? Is this a joke?” He's like, “Nope, not a joke.” And he said the guy was going to come back on Friday. I don't know what he said to the guy, but the guy came at 6:30 in the morning the next day and installed it. But I was like, “I am unable to cook another dinner.” We had to go out to eat. So, we went out to eat and we went to one of my favorite places in town Farmhouse Burgers. They have really high-quality grass-fed beef and they bake their bread, I think, anyway. And so I had their fries with malt vinegar, and it's so delicious.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm excited. I got flooded two months ago now.

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Finally, tomorrow and the next day they're fixing it.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's good.

Melanie Avalon: But it's going to be craziness, I have to move. I have to move apartments. Well, they have like a guest.

Gin Stephens: Okay, just temporarily.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. But I've been living in mold for two months.

Gin Stephens: Oh, gosh. We're looking at houses, trying to do some investing and we wouldn't-- was it yesterday morning? Yeah, we went yesterday morning and looked at a house, as soon as we walked through the door, I was like, “Nope.” You could tell it was full of mold.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's a no. Just no. I just want to say, listeners, if you're at all suspicious, I really cannot encourage enough doing an air test for mold. Not a moisture test, an air test.

Gin Stephens: Is that what you did? You did one?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I did it myself. I was like, “I'm just going to do this.” And that escalated it, I guess.

Gin Stephens: And then they can't argue with that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it was mold toxins will do a number on your immune system. All righty. Well, on that note, if you would like to submit your own questions to the podcast, you can directly email questions at ifpodcast.com, or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can follow us on Instagram where we are trying to be more active. Baby steps. I'm @MelanieAvalon. Gin is @GinStephens. Oh, November 3rd.

Gin Stephens: Yep.

Melanie Avalon: Hopefully, there will be a picture on my Instagram on November 3rd of me with Gin’s book at Target. Are you going to do it, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Oh, gosh, I'm definitely going to do it.

Melanie Avalon: Okay.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Although that will already have passed by the time this episode comes out. But, yes, I'm totally going to go look for it. Actually, I'm going to the beach that day. So, I'm going to go to our Target, then I'm going to drive to the beach, then I'm going to go to that Target. Well, depending on what time, we'll see. I'm definitely going to go to more than one Target.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to order a selfie stick to make this easier.

Gin Stephens: All right. That's a good idea. Yeah, I'm bad at selfies. So, maybe I need a selfie stick.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like that might make it easier. Follow us on Instagram, see if we are interesting. See if we're more interesting. See if on November 3rd we posted. You can join our Facebook groups. IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life. Gin has a lot, which any of them, Gin, would you like to plug?

Gin Stephens: Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri, that's a good one to come to. It's new. I love it.

Melanie Avalon: So, join us there. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. Enjoy the early darkness tonight.

Gin Stephens: I will not enjoy it. Thank you. [laughs] I'm already ready for bed. What is it like? It's 4:00 PM and I'm exhausted. All right. Talk to you in a week. Bye.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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! 

 

 

Nov 22

Episode 188: Gin’s New Podcast, Gut Health, Berberine, Constipation, GI Distress, Issues with Keto, Reversing Gray Hair And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 188 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast, hosted by Melanie Avalon, author of What When Wine Diet: Lose Weight And Feel Great With Paleo-Style Meals, Intermittent Fasting, And Wine and Gin Stephens, author of Delay, Don't Deny: Living An Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

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

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

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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, New Members Get 2 New York Strips And 4 Top Sirloin Steaks When They Place Their First Order At Butcherbox.com/ifpodcast

3:20 - 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!

16:30 - Listener Q&A: Lillian - TMI Alert!

21:30 - JOOVV RED LIGHT THERAPY DEVICES:  For A Limited Time Go To Joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

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

30:20 - Listener Q&A: Tracy - Ketosis

Who needs to avoid Fat Bombs and BPC?

Kiss my Keto C8 MCT Oil

42:10 - BIOPTIMIZERS: Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save An Extra 10% On The Immunity Protection Stack

44:20 - Listener Q&A: Jessica - Less Gray Hair??

Dirty Genes: A Breakthrough Program to Treat the Root Cause of Illness and Optimize Your Health (Ben Lynch)

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 188 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

Friends, Black Friday is coming up and I'm about to tell you how you can get early access to ButcherBox’s free steak sampler. We're talking two free grass-fed New York strips and four grass-fed top sirloins. Do not miss this. We are huge fans around here of ButcherBox. They make it easy to get high quality humanely raised meat that you can trust shipped straight to your door. I hardcore research their practices, you guys know I do my research, and what they're doing is incredible. Their beef is 100% grass fed and grass finished. Their chicken is free-range and organic. Their pork is heritage breed and super importantly. They are all about caring for the lives of both their animals and the livelihoods of their farmers, treating our planet with respect and allowing us to enjoy better meals together.

By cutting out the middleman at the grocery store and working directly with farmers to ship directly to the consumer, they're making it actually affordable to get this amazing high-quality meat which is help supporting the future of our planet. They have boxes that can fit every single need. So, if you want more steak or more seafood or more chicken, it's all there. And those meals come frozen for freshness, packed in an eco-friendly 100% recyclable box. Their cattle are all 100% grass fed, roaming on pasture with room to graze. Their chickens are raised humanely. No cages, crates, or crowding and using controlled atmosphere stunning practices to minimize stress in the animals. They uphold the strictest of standards in the seafood industry, which as I found out really crazy things go down in the seafood industry. It's shocking. If you want to learn more about that check out my blog post about it at melanieavalon.com/butcherbox.

To get early access to Butcherbox’s insane Black Friday special, just go to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast or enter the promo code, IFPODCAST, at checkout, that will get you two free grass-fed New York strips and four free grass-fed top sirloins all in your first box. This is an insane offer. Again, that's butcherbox.com/podcast for early access to ButcherBox’s Black Friday steak sampler.

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you looking for the perfect gifts this holiday season for yourself and others? Well, the average male uses 6 skincare products per day, the average female uses 12. And as it turns out, conventional skincare and makeup is full of toxins. We're talking things like endocrine disrupters, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight, and even carcinogens linked to cancer. So, while you may be fasting clean, you may be putting compounds directly into your body during the fast that can be affecting both your health and weight loss. Thankfully, there's an easy solution.

There's a company called Beautycounter and they make an array of skincare makeup products that are extensively tested to be safe for your skin. You can feel good about all of the ingredients that you put on. Their products are even tested multiple times for heavy metals. And for the holiday season, Beautycounter has so many amazing gift sets. These are bundled products at a discount, and they make incredible gifts. Think about it. You can get the products for yourself or for your friends and family and help clean up their skincare, all in disguise of gift-giving. Works pretty well. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you're trying to figure out exactly which products to get, check out my Beautycounter quiz, that's at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz. And for the latest discounts and giveaways from me, definitely get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. All right, now back to the show.

Hi everybody, and welcome. This is episode number one 188 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 great. I'm getting so excited about my new podcast.

Melanie Avalon: I'm getting excited about your new podcast.

Gin Stephens: Episode 0. We've listened to it. We have the show opener, we have the music. We've listened to Episode 0 and it's going to go live next week, which will be live already by the time that this podcast comes out, so people will be able to find Episode 0 of the Life Lessons podcast. It's just called Life Lessons. And you'll know it's me because it will say hosted by Gin Stephens and Sheri Bullock. Listen to Episode 0 and subscribe. The Sleep episode comes out December 2.

Melanie Avalon: That's very exciting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's very exciting.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, so Episode 0 is a topic. It's not like a--

Gin Stephens: Episode 0 is like meet the hosts kind of a thing. And the reason we're doing an Episode 0 is because you know how first you have to get accepted on all the platforms and you don't know how long that's going to take.

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: It just usually takes a couple days, but we decided we wanted episode one to come out December 2.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, so Episode One is to Sleep episode, and Episode 0 is?

Gin Stephens: It's just meet Gin and Sheri. We call it the teaser episode. I did that for Intermittent Fasting Stories. I had Episode 0 that had some little blurbs from upcoming episodes. It's like a placeholder, our podcast is coming. That way you can have Episode One drop the day you want it to draw because you're already accepted everywhere.

Melanie Avalon: Don't we know about this?

Gin Stephens: Yes, we do, although it's been a long time. Didn't our podcast-- The reason it's on Sundays is because that just happened to be when it initially went live?

Melanie Avalon: I don't think so.

Gin Stephens: I thought so. I thought that that was the date went live or maybe we decided-- I don't know, it's been so long.

Melanie Avalon: I feel we wanted it to be Mondays for the first one we did it maybe on a Sunday to be sure. We released it earlier.

Gin Stephens: That's right, but ours is Monday, not Sunday. I was thinking the day early.

Melanie Avalon: Because we used early access on--

Gin Stephens: Okay, I was thinking about early access, and that doesn't even happen anymore. That shows how on top of things I am. What day is it? Where am I? What year is it? I don't even know. And we're recording this right before the time change. Can I just say I don't like the time change?

[laughter]

Melanie Avalon: Wait a minute. Wait. This is one of my favorite days of the year.

Gin Stephens: I don't like the fall time change. I like the springtime change.

Melanie Avalon: I hate the spring-- What is one of my least favorite days of the year?

Gin Stephens: Well, see, I'm not surprised. I don't like the fall time change.

Melanie Avalon: It's fabulous.

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: It starts getting darker earlier.

Gin Stephens: I hate that. I want to go to bed as soon as it starts.

Melanie Avalon: No, I love it. Bring on the dark. I love the dark.

Gin Stephens: And I don't like-- because I wake up so early naturally, I don't like that. Now the time has shifted-- Well, not now, but once it shifts, I'll be waking up at like 4:30 in the morning ready to get up. But it's too early to get up.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't have that problem.

Gin Stephens: So, I don't like it. Messed me up.

Melanie Avalon: I'm actually crying from laughing right now.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I bet you're. Anyway, I don't like it. I don't like when it's dark early.

Melanie Avalon: I've been so excited this whole week about it.

Gin Stephens: I'll be excited in the spring.

Melanie Avalon: And I'm awake when the time change happens. So, there's this magical moment where you get a whole another hour. It's so exciting. You live your life for an hour and then you get it all over again.

Gin Stephens: I always wonder about people who work the overnight shift. They're at work and then the time changes. Do they have to stay an extra hour? I bet they do.

Melanie Avalon: I guess so. Actually, I used to be awake at 2:00, but now I'm pretty good about not-- or being asleep a little bit before that. I pat myself on the back if it's before 2:00.

Gin Stephens: I think I've been awake at 2:00, still awake. Let me just say, I've been still awake at 2:00 one time for the whole 2020.

Melanie Avalon: Oh my gosh.

Gin Stephens: I was at the beach.

Melanie Avalon: That's so funny.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Other than that, nope.

Melanie Avalon: What are you going to be for Halloween?

Gin Stephens: Gin Stephens. I don't dress up for Halloween. Do you dress up for Halloween?

Melanie Avalon: No. [laughs]

Gin Stephens: Yeah, tomorrow's Halloween, listeners, when we're recording this but we are having like a block party, and I'll go to that.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's fun.

Gin Stephens: Like a neighborhood get-together. It'll probably be a lot of kids. So, we'll see. By the way, everybody, we are going to be safe, we will socially distance, we will wear our masks, and that's good. Maybe I should get a wacky mask-- and we'll be outside. Yeah, it's going to be outside. But everyone's going to be safe, but I know some areas of the country are more locked down than Georgia. I will say Cal's coming home in December for Christmas. I'm so excited Cal and Kate are coming. But he lives in San Francisco, and so we're talking about what we're doing at Christmas. He's like, “I'm not doing that. I'm not doing that. I'm not doing that.” I'm like, “Come on.”

Melanie Avalon: He's not coming home?

Gin Stephens: Well, he is coming home. But he doesn't want to go to the family Christmas. He just wants to be here with us because they have more restrictions in San Francisco. It's just interesting to hear because here in Georgia, things are fairly open. We wear our masks everywhere we go, we socially distance, we wait in line six feet apart. But you don't realize that it's different in other places.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, that's so interesting.

Gin Stephens: It is very interesting. He's flying Delta because they're still keeping their planes more socially distanced, that sort of thing. But I'm just so excited that he's coming home, I ordered new Christmas stockings.

Melanie Avalon: Aww.

Gin Stephens: I needed to get one for Kate.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's exciting.

Gin Stephens: It is exciting, because we have our old ones that we've had forever, just for the four of us, our family. But I started looking to find a matching one for Kate, and of course, I couldn't find a matching one. And it would just stand out so differently, it would look so different. So, I just got--

Melanie Avalon: All new ones.

Gin Stephens: All new stockings. So, now, Will needs to either find somebody while I can still buy this set. Get one just like it or--

Melanie Avalon: That's really funny.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. No rush, Will, sorry. He's only 21. Although, I was married at 21 and Chad was already married by that point. And Cal was married at 21. So, Will is 21. He needs to get with it. I'm kidding.

Melanie Avalon: Got to fulfill the Stephens tradition.

Gin Stephens: We're early marriers around here.

Melanie Avalon: You are early marriers. I remember when one of my best friends in high school got married and it was before she was 21 and I kept thinking, I would want to wait till I was at least 21, so everybody at the wedding could drink.

Gin Stephens: I was 21 when we got married, but Chad was actually still 20.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. So, when I say we were both 21, I mean, we both were married by 21 is what I meant.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Wow.

Gin Stephens: He was not able to drink legally at our wedding.

Melanie Avalon: Oh my.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I know, that's funny. But then, we went to Jamaica and everybody could drink there. So, good times.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. That always helps.

Gin Stephens: It does.

Melanie Avalon: I have two updates.

Gin Stephens: Okay, what are they?

Melanie Avalon: I'm trialing now my second CGM because I was trialing the Levels company and now I'm trialing Nutrisense. They both use the FreeStyle Libre. And I had the interview with Levels, it was awesome.

Gin Stephens: Oh, good. What did you learn? What's a quick thing that you know I would love to hear?

Melanie Avalon: What's really interesting, so you know how I was saying that I wasn't super happy with my fasting blood sugars and stuff like that?

Gin Stephens: Right.

Melanie Avalon: So, in the in between, I did the Levels for two weeks and then I think I took off like around five days. I wanted my arm to recover. It doesn't hurt, but just having that thing in your arm for two weeks, I was like, I just want that area to air out.

Gin Stephens: Right. I know what you mean.

Melanie Avalon: So, I took five days off, and I started supplementing motivated by one of the listener questions that we received, berberine. Wow. I mean, I think it's the berberine, that's making a huge difference. But wow.

Gin Stephens: Really?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, well, it's also making me a little bit suspicious about the accuracy of these CGMs, not the accuracy as far as like the changes go. And this is the big takeaway for me from it, is you really can see your trends and how you're responding and how your blood sugar is changing. I do wonder about the accuracy is supposed to be within 10 points or whatever, blood Sugar points, however is it measured. But in any case, this time around, assuming it's accurate, my blood sugar's incredible. During the day, it's 70s or 80s. After eating, it doesn't even go above 90s.

Gin Stephens: Well, that's interesting. That seems low. What are you eating?

Melanie Avalon: Low carb.

Gin Stephens: That might be what you would expect for low carb, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think so. What's really interesting is the difference with Nutrisense-- For listeners, I will be airing both of the episodes and I will have coupons, I don't have it yet, but I'll have coupons for listeners to get discounts or something. So, I'll put links in the show notes to those episodes when they come out. But hold off for that is the point. But in any case, Nutrisense, you do your stuff, and then they email you and talk to you about what's going on.

Gin Stephens: Like feedback.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And so, the girls were talking to me, and she was talking about my late-night eating and how it might be better to eat earlier. And I was like, “Well, actually--” all this information about my thoughts about how complicated it is and nuanced and how we talk about this all the time and how I personally think that, yes, all things considered, I do think eating earlier is better. But I think that the majority of the information does not take into account like eating late and an intermittent fasting type time-restricted eating pattern, which has been really receptive and it's been a really good dialogue. But her responses have so far been like, “Well, you're responding really well to meals,” or, “You're responding really well to your late-night meal.” So, it's really interesting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Well, you can't argue with good results.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, the berberine, for listeners, we talked about before. It's a natural herb, and since we answered that listeners question, I've done a lot more research on it pretty consistently, and all the trials rivals metformin, which is a prescribed medication for diabetes-- rivals Metformin effects on like blood sugar on HbA1c, which is your long-term marker of how higher blood sugar levels are affecting your red blood cells. And it doesn't tend to have the side effects that metformin can have with GI distress and stuff like that. Although I posted it on my Instagram, and one person was like, “Why are you taking pharmaceutical medications for diabetes? Shouldn't you be addressing your diet first?” I was like, “This is not a pharmaceutical. I do address my diet. This is a plant compound.”

Gin Stephens: Is that someone who had never heard of you or met you before?

Melanie Avalon: I guess so. I answered her nicely, though, and explained the situation. So, it's not a pharmaceutical. I've been talking about it on my Facebook group, which is IF Biohackers. So, friends, join me there, but a lot of people have been asking me about the berberine experience, and have been talking about their own experience.

Gin Stephens: Well, very interesting.

Gin Stephens: All right. Shall we move on? We have from Lillian the subject is TMI Alert. “Hi ladies. I will literally scream if I hear my question on your podcast.” Well, everyone, get ready. Lillian is screaming!

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: Lilian says, “I have been listening since March when I accidentally bumped into your podcast after listening to a Disney podcast. IF has changed my life. I went from 165 pounds to my goal weight of 124. I'm 50 years old, and a mother of two. Lost my way doing 20:4, and now I'm in maintenance doing 18:6. I asked this question on Gin's group, and she tagged Melanie that would probably have a better answer, but I guess Melanie didn't see it. Sorry about the rambling. My question is, what do you really recommend?

I struggle with constipation, have for a really long time. Right now, I don't have insurance and cannot afford to look into this medically out of pocket. My father passed away in December from colon cancer and my sister beat the same seven years ago. I know I really have to look into it, and I will as soon as I can. It's my priority. What do you ladies recommend to start helping my gut? Is it Atrantil? Is it BiOptimizers or anything else? I eat pretty healthy. I eat whole foods, meat, chicken, fish, all vegetables, etc. I'm a [unintelligible [00:30:58] eater, but also the type of person who won't use the microwave because I don't want any craziness in my food.” Sidenote, Melanie, do you use a microwave?

Melanie Avalon: No.

Gin Stephens: I had to say that. I suddenly had a thought that I bet Melanie didn't want any craziness in her food, either. I use a microwave. No one is surprised, right?

Melanie Avalon: I'm not actually so much concerned about-- when the food is microwaved, the done food I'm not so concerned about, but I am just suspicious, in general, I don't know. I don't use it because I don't need it.

Gin Stephens: I use mine. Daily Harvest bowls that I to have lately to open my window. I microwave those. And like, if I'm heating something up, like a warm drink in my eating window, I'll microwave it.

Melanie Avalon: I don’t think I need it for anything. Yeah, I have a convection oven that does all the different things.

Gin Stephens: And Chad uses it all the time to heat up his lunch because he eats lunch. But, yeah, we use a microwave. Our microwave right now, Melanie, I don't know if it's on its last legs. We just had to replace our dishwasher. I'm not sure when they built this kitchen, early 2000s, I guess. But it's a built-in KitchenAid microwave-oven combo. So, I know it would be really pricey to fix or replace. So, we're trying to keep it going, but sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. You put your food in and it'll go for two minutes and then it's still ice cold. So, it's like playing the roulette wheel of microwaving. Will we have hot food? We don't know. [unintelligible [00:32:34] try to fix it, they're going to try again. Fingers crossed.

Melanie Avalon: 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.

Since then, they've remained the most innovative, forward-thinking light therapy brand out there. And we're so excited because Joovv just launched their next generation of devices, and they've made huge upgrades to what was already a really incredible system. Their new devices are sleeker, they're up to 25% lighter, and they all have the same power that we've come to expect from them. They've also intensified their coverage area, so you can stand as much as three times further away from the device and still get the recommended dosage. They've also upgraded the setup for the new devices with quick easy mounting options, so your new Joovv can fit just about any space. And the new devices include some pretty cool new features, things like their Recovery Plus mode, which utilizes pulsing technology to give yourselves an extra boost to recovery from a tough workout with rejuvenating near-infrared light.

And this is my personal favorite update. So, for those of us who like to use Joovv 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 game-changer 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.

Gin Stephens: All right. Anyway, back to Lillian's question. She says, “Doritos is also my junk of choice, but I rarely have it. I love you ladies so much. I can relate to both of you at different times. I was so upset that I caught up to all the episodes last week. Now, I can't binge anymore. But don't worry, I've already found your other podcasts. But this one where I get you both is definitely my favorite. Keep on keeping on, ladies.” Well, she's going to have lots and lots of hours of listening with the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast and Intermittent Fasting Stories, and then Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri.

Melanie Avalon: So many things.

Gin Stephens: You can listen to Melanie and Gin, like every day of the week, before we'll be done. We're going to be on five days a week. Wait, no, four days a week.

Melanie Avalon: When does Intermittent Fasting Stories air?

Gin Stephens: Intermittent Fasting Stories comes on Thursdays. Life Lessons will be Wednesday.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, so this is Monday, Life Lessons Wednesday, Intermittent Fasting Stories Thursday, Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast Friday.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. So, Tuesday, you're going to have to just keep yourself occupied. But for a while I had Tuesday Intermittent Fasting Stories. I had it coming on twice a week. So, I was trying to catch up. I had so many guests. So, I had a Tuesday and a Thursday, but I can't keep up with that pace. So, that would be funny. We would have like all five days covered. I just can't do it anymore. That was too much.

Melanie Avalon: I did just realize I was going through my guests I have booked for Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, and I'm actually covered through April, which is-- that's a lot of guests, which is overwhelming for me to think about because they're all a lot to prep for, but so much content.

Gin Stephens: I mean, it's a lot. It really is. I'm recognizing that with the new podcast with Life Lessons because I actually have to do more prep. With Intermittent Fasting Stories, I just talk to somebody, that's easy. I love it. I love to talk to people, but with Life Lessons, I have to do some research, but I'm enjoying it. It's different. All right, so Lillian's question.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So gut health, basically. And she said she struggles with constipation, correct?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: I'm glad this question came up because that was one other thing I've noticed with the berberine. It's really been helping my bloating and everything, which I did not anticipate, but then I googled it and that seems to have an effect for that, but I'm not saying to take berberine for that. So, when it comes to GI issues, there's so many factors going on. And it can be really hard to know what the root cause is and what's going on. And a lot of people find the diets that work for them and they're able to resolve it with diet or manage it with diet. For me, personally, and this is just me, but I follow a low FODMAP diet and I find that works really, really well for me. I'll put a link in the show notes to my iTunes app called Food Sense Guide, developed by Gin’s son, Cal. I'm actually really surprised, Gin, because I'll randomly look at it if I have to share the link with somebody. And usually, whenever I look at it, it's usually ranked really high in iTunes-- The other day I checked, and it was number 10. And I was like, “Okay.”

Gin Stephens: In your category?

Melanie Avalon: For food and drink apps. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Awesome. I love that. That's really cool.

Melanie Avalon: I was like, “Oh, it's keeping on keeping on.” And I did just release an update for it. I added spices and herbs, which was exciting because I didn't have that in there. But in any case, so finding the foods that work for you can be really key. She says she eats whole foods and sounds like she's pretty in tune with that. As far as the actual GI distress, we do talk about a lot of different supplements for gut health and I feel it's been a while since we've revisited that, so I can let you know what's going on with that. So Atrantil is a blend of polyphenols and peppermint, but it specifically has a compound that targets-- it's not actually normal gut bacteria, it's actually a more ancient organism that exists in our gut called-- I think it's called, I don't know how to say it, archaea bacteria, but those produce methane, and methane actually serves as a neurotransmitter in the gut and slows motility, so it can create constipation.

So, a lot of people with constipation, Atrantil is a game-changer for them. And they do have clinical data and trials behind this. I take it every single day. And it's one of those things that I'll like stop taking and then if my gut gets wonky, I'll start taking it again. And then, I'm like, “Why did I ever stop?” but it's pretty amazing. So, that's what Atrantil is for. I think our link for that is lovemytummy.com/ifp. The coupon code, IFP, gets you 10% off.

BiOptimizers, so they make digestive enzymes. If you're struggling, if you have gas and bloating, a lot of times people aren't digesting their food, so you might benefit from digestive enzymes. There are a lot of brands out there, but we've worked with BiOptimizers, and they make Masszymes, which is amazing. Probiotics can help a lot of people, depends on how you react to them, BiOptimizers does have one called P3-OM. I like it because it's a single strain rather than hitting your gut with all these random strains that you're not really sure what's happening, but it's a single strain and it's proteolytic, meaning it helps digest proteins. So, the more digestion you're doing, the better. As far as constipation in general, supplementing magnesium can be really, really helpful. So, again, BiOptimizers has a magnesium supplement. I also like Natural Calm, which is a drink form that you can make and I get the unflavored one and I drink that and I find that really, really helpful. Just keeping things flowing can be so key. So, finding the foods that work for you, finding things that support motility. If you're hypothyroid, that often can lead to constipation. So, if you are able to check your thyroid levels, that can be really helpful. Yeah, there's so much at play and there's so many opinions and perspectives and viewpoints. I think we're all just really unique and so you just have to experiment and find what works for you.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, everybody doesn't need every one of those things. But the one that works for you is the one that is a game changer.

Melanie Avalon: I think the food choices can be really, really key. Oh, by the way, the Food Sense app, it doesn't just show you FODMAPs, I don't know if I even said what it shows-- It has over 300 foods and it shows the different levels of potentially problematic compounds that you might be reacting to. So, if you find yourself reacting to foods, it shows things like gluten, lectins, histamine, salicylates, oxalates, like I said, FODMAPs, nightshades, sulfides, there's even more. So, I'll put a link to it in the show notes, but that's at melanieavalon.com/foodsenseguide.

Gin Stephens: I just love that you and Cal just quietly working together on your app just--

Melanie Avalon: Just, yeah, motoring along.

Gin Stephens: He's such a good boy.

Melanie Avalon: No, he was amazing. Now for updates, I'm actually working with somebody he knew from school.

Gin Stephens: Oh, okay. Say his first name, is it Jacob?

Melanie Avalon: Nate.

Gin Stephens: Nate. I love Nate! Nate is someone that Cal went to high school with. He was a year behind Cal, and Nate's been at our house many a time.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, he did. He did all the recent updates.

Gin Stephens: Well, good. I'm glad Nate is holding up the tradition and doing a good job. We love Nate.

Melanie Avalon: I think I'm actually going to do another update soon and I'm going to do AIP, so it'll show if the food is AIP, autoimmune paleo. So, that'll probably be the next update in the works and I'll probably be working with Nate again for that. But, yeah, Cal did amazing job. It's just really surreal that it's-- that it’ll be number 10 in the food-- because there are a lot of apps in the world.

Gin Stephens: There are.

Melanie Avalon: So, it's exciting. Anyways, shall we move on to the next question?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: So, the next question comes from Tracy. The subject is Ketosis. And Tracy says, “Hi, ladies, I need your help, PLEEEAASSE.” She says, “I'm so confused about keto. I'm a huge fan and I value your opinion.” I like how she writes. She's very expressive. She says, “I've been doing IF for a year this month, and I love it. I just started with keto about two and a half months ago. I'm wanting to lose about eight pounds, but I also am looking for the health benefits. I've been keeping my fat up and fasting about 18 or 19 hours every day. I decided to get a blood monitor to see if I'm in ketosis, and I was shocked that I read between a 0.1 to 0.3, not even in nutritional ketosis. I started taking MCT oil and eating more fat and nothing. What am I doing wrong?

I've actually put back on four pounds that I lost with IF. I'm so discouraged and now so obsessed with tracking and macros. I want to cry. Do you have any advice? Also, should I track macros if I'm fasting 19 hours a day? I don't know what to do anymore. I honestly love you both and do listen to all your podcasts. But I still have so many questions. Thanks a bunch. Tracy.”

Gin Stephens: Well, I am not going to be your keto coach expert on how to do keto because that is not my expertise. But I will say this, there's a blog post that Dr. Jason Fung wrote years ago about “Who needs to add more fat?” And he said, “Well, not you if you're trying to lose fat,” and it's a great blog post. So, if you want to try to search for it, search for Jason Fung, Bulletproof Coffee, Who Needs More Fat, or something like that. There's words in the title, I can't think of it off the top of my head. But basically, he says that if you're trying to lose fat, you do not want to just keep adding fat bombs and MCT oil and eating more fat, that's not really going to help you. And you've actually noticed that to be true, Tracy, because you've put back on four pounds.

I also really am not a fan of chasing ketone reading numbers. I talk about this in Fast. Feast. Repeat., some of the reasons why numbers go down over time and why they may not be accurate. And we don't know this blood monitor that you have. You mentioned the brand name, it's not one I'm familiar with. You don't know that that's actually giving you inaccurate reading. I'm not really sure about that. But the key is, do you feel good and are you having fat loss? Because if you feel good and you're having fat loss, that's a good sign that what you're doing is working. If you're gaining weight, that's a sign that what you're doing is not working. I am one of those people that keto does not work for my body. I tried keto in 2014, I tried it for the entire summer, I didn't lose any weight at all. I constantly changed up my macros. I had a Ketonix breathalyzer, that was state of the art back then in 2014. I was able to blow ketones showing that I was in ketosis, but I didn't lose any fat. I'm pretty sure it's because of the amount I was taking in. And so, I stopped keto completely, reintroduced carbs, switched to intermittent fasting, and the weight started to come off at about a pound a week.

Now, my body does well with carbs. Yours may not, I don't really know, but your body might not be a body that does well with keto. So, I want you to really think about that. Why are you doing keto? Are you doing it because you know you feel best eating that way? If so, I would consider you don't want to just up, up, up your fat. You want to let your body make ketones from your stored body fat, and I wouldn't worry about the ketone readings. Just eat until you're satisfied, don't add extra fat just to add it. Focus on the high-quality vegetables that you can eat, the protein sources that you're eating. Would you say that's good advice, Melanie? Or am I getting it all wrong?

Melanie Avalon: No. 100%. I don't think chasing ketones is usually often the answer depending on your goals. If people's goals are just weight loss, chasing ketones is not always the route to that. If your goal is weight loss, I can't think of many situations where my answer would be add more fat. I mean, it's the highest density caloric source, and it's easy to have a lot and add in a lot to quickly make your meal way more calories. It's not the adding fat that's making you ketogenic as much as the lowering the carbs and lowering the insulin.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the whole add more fat, just add more fat, add more fat, even in 2014, that was the standard advice people were giving. I was in a million keto groups on Facebook at the time and if you were struggling at all, the answer was, add more fat. I'm like, “Hmm,” that doesn't seem to be the right answer for me. Now, I understand why. But that was what everybody said, add more fat.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, you might be more likely to generate ketones because you have this readily accessible source of fat to turn into ketones. And maybe your body is resistant to tap into your fat stores. But it's not like adding that fat makes you more likely to burn the body fat, it's doing the opposite.

Gin Stephens: If you want higher ketones, adding some MCT oil might be the great strategy. But that's not the goal.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. If you are doing really low carb, and you do want to add fat, and you want to make it most likely to lose weight, while still adding a lot of fat. She says she's taking MCT oil. So, I'm not encouraging this, but I'm saying some people are eating lower carb and they actually can't get enough calories because they're so full and they do want to add fat, but maybe they don't, but they still want to lose weight. So, if you get the C8-only version of MCT oil, that is the least likely chain of fat to get stored as fat. It gets processed by the liver, and is pretty much like uses fuel, sort of like a carb, but it's a fat and it can raise metabolism. So, if you're the type that is wanting to add fat, and wants at least likely to have fat storage potential, I will just say the C8 version. So, I know you can get that on Amazon, we can put links to it in the show notes. There's the Kiss My Keto brand, they make a C8 only, there's another one. I only use two specific brands because they come in glass bottles. And I don't want to be using MCT from a plastic bottle because that's just going to leach chemicals, I think, from the plastic. There's Kiss My Keto and then there's one called-- I look it up, I'll put it in the show notes, but yeah.

As far as I agree with everything that Gin said. Tracy, maybe have a reframe. Don't stress about ketones and adding more fat and all of that. And if you want to do lower carb, just do lower carb, and stop adding all the extra fat. If you want to switch up the macros because she says should she even track macros. It's up to you if you want to track macros. That's a whole another like world to discuss. Do you think that she should stay low carb, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, I mean, she started with keto two and a half months ago. She only wants to lose about eight pounds, but she's regained four-- I'm not sure that low carb is what's right for her. I mean, I don't have any indication that it is--

Melanie Avalon: She's adding more fat though. I would say maybe if you're happy with the low-carb world, like the foods you're eating, maybe step one, stop adding all that extra fat. Just be low carb and see what happens. If that's not working and the keto boat doesn't seem to be resonating with you, then yeah, maybe try switching up the macros.

Gin Stephens: I think a lot of people see the popularity of keto right now and then they just assume it's right for everybody and that they need to jump on that bandwagon, and that's the only way they can lose weight. And so, that's just not true. Just because a lot of people are doing keto, doesn't mean that you need to do keto. I mean, maybe keto is great for your body.

Melanie Avalon: We actually talked about the problems of long-term keto in the Joel Greene episode. He is not a fan of long-term keto. He was talking about how in the long term, the ketogenic diet actually creates a lot of oxidative stress in the mitochondria of ourselves and it specifically encourages something called 4-HNE, which is linked to-- I forget the details, but it's oxidative stress and cancer and a lot of potential problems. He talks about it in his book about-- he thinks keto is healthy and therapeutic-- I don't ever want to put words in his mouth, but the interpretation I got was that it can be therapeutic for a shorter period of time or a season even. But long term, it's probably not the best.

Gin Stephens: I just know how my body is, and we tend to-- I've said this many, many times and the whole premise of Feast Without Fear, my second book, in fact, we tend to feel whatever foods make us feel best should just feel that for everybody. And so, I don't like to say no one should do keto long term because even though I feel it wouldn't be right for me and I also share some concerns, who am I to say it isn't the best for somebody's body long term, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: So, if you're doing keto long term and you feel great, and you're staying healthy, I don't want you to feel like we're telling you not to. But I don't know, it's a tough one. I have personal feelings about it, too.

Melanie Avalon: I really think it's all unique.

Gin Stephens: I think back to Wade Lightheart and his partner. I think the two of them and his partner, eats keto and has done it long term and it feels great and does well. So, who am I to say that you shouldn't do it long term when it truly works for him? It works for Matt, so.

Melanie Avalon: I think it's more likely that men can do it easier long term. I think women more often experience issues.

Gin Stephens: I think that could be true, that sounds plausible, but I'm a big fan of eating all the foods. I'm a little bit skeptical of any plan where you restrict something forever, and never again, you're going to have those things. I think that could lead to prob-- our goal is to be able to tolerate all things. But I understand that sometimes our bodies get really out of whack. And so, we can't tolerate all things and so then, keto could be very therapeutic, or a plant-based way of eating could be very therapeutic. It just depends on what your issues are. Ideally, we would all be healthy enough to eat all the foods because people weren't running around thousands of years ago, like, “I'm sorry, I can't eat that. I'm keto.” They just ate whatever they could find and eat.

Melanie Avalon: They also weren't eating grains.

Gin Stephens: Well, we could debate about grains, but I think people have been eating grains a long, long time. I think people have been healthily eating grains for thousands of years. I think as soon as people figured out how to eat grains, they were eating grains. So, I hope that that helped, Tracy. Just keep tweaking what you're eating until you feel great and you see results, that's your goal. I would stop trying to get everybody's-- like this coach, and this person, and even us, just eat what feels right to you. Don't try to add more things just because you read that you should add them. Eat foods that make you feel great, period.

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We have a question from Jessica Taylor, and I love this one. The subject is Less Gray Hair. She says, “Hi ladies, I've been clean IF for four months now after finding your podcast and also reading Fast. Feast. Repeat. I love your shows very informative with fun, easy to listen to personalities to boot. Thank you. I have not yet heard my question, so I hope it is not a repeat. Here goes.

In addition to all the amazing benefits I have already experienced with IF, I have noticed that I don't need to get my grays colored as often as I used to. I'm 49 and have always been healthy and fit. I have gone to my lovely color lady exactly every three weeks for several years now to get my grays colored. By the three-week mark, it is always time to go as the grays are showing up quite a bit. But since IF, I find myself repetitively calling to reschedule my hair color appointments for a few weeks later because there isn't as much of a need. I still have some grays growing in but not nearly as many. There is no question that there is a difference. It seems unlikely that IF could affect the color of one's hair, but maybe with autophagy, there's a slowing of the aging process that is resulting in fewer gray hairs. I have not changed anything else in my health or life routine that I can think of. Seems odd to me that it would be IF, but I cannot deny the definite difference in the longer spacing between my previous every three-week hair appointments. What do you think? Thanks, Jessica." Can I just say it real quick, Melanie, what I want to say?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: We have seen this before in the groups. So, yes, we have had people whose hair turns back to its prior color, no more gray. It sounds ridiculous. If I wrote a book and said your hair will go back to its normal color and you will lose the gray, it would sound fake and made up, but we've seen it enough times that I know that this happens for some people. Did not happen for me. I still have all my grays, but we hear it a lot. Actually today, Melanie, somebody in the One Meal A Day group posted photos of himself with his hair, and he actually used to have a receding hairline that is now better.

Melanie Avalon: Oh wow!

Gin Stephens: No lie. It looks like-- you can't even believe it, but he had such a receding hairline, bald area and now his hairline is back to how it used to be. It sounds crazy, but that's not the first time I've seen that either. If you're having increased human growth hormone, and you're having all these positive benefits that bring you back to a more youthful state in your body, yeah, I think it's plausible. What do you think?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so I'm currently prepping because I'm bringing on Dr. Ben Lynch onto my podcast, which is so exciting. He's basically one of the go-to authorities in my sphere for epigenetics and gene problems like MTHFR and stuff like that. And rereading his book, Dirty Genes, he talks about why we get gray hair, and there are two main genes involved with it. So, basically, the reason our hair becomes gray is when we are under stress, hydrogen peroxide is released as a side effect of that. Our MAOA gene, in particular, will eliminate excess stress compounds like epinephrine or norepinephrine, even dopamine, and it creates a lot of hydrogen peroxide in the process. So, the more stressed we are, the more hydrogen peroxide is floating around. And so, hydrogen peroxide can turn your hair gray.

On top of that, we have a gene called the GPX gene, and that's a big detox gene. And it's responsible for getting rid of the hydrogen peroxide that's released when we're stressed. And it does that by using glutathione, which is our body's master antioxidant. It basically turns the hydrogen peroxide into water, so then we just literally urinate out the hydrogen peroxide. But if our detox genes, so GPX-- well, two things if our MAOA gene, the gene that's in charge of regulating our stress neurotransmitters, is overburdened or overwhelmed, we might be getting a lot of hydrogen peroxide. If our detox gene, like GPX, is not able to keep up with all of the hydrogen peroxide and if our glutathione is getting taxed, that hydrogen peroxide builds up and turns your hair more and more gray.

So, any sort of like diet or lifestyle situation that is managing or reducing our stress levels is likely going to reduce the amount of hydrogen peroxide and reduce that graying effect. I was just thinking about it now because I hadn't thought about to this extent, because-- preventatively, it can be great for preventing gray hairs. But then, since hair does come in cycles-- and I don't know if it's true, I don't know a ton about hair growth, but I was just thinking, okay, if hair comes in cycles, and your hair is gray, but it's been turned gray from the hydrogen peroxide but then you're doing diet and lifestyle situations where you are keeping your stress down, supporting your body's detox systems, which fasting can do all of this, when the new hair comes in, it's not predestined to be gray. I don't think. I don't see how it would be. I can 100% see how you would be getting less gray hairs. And as we age, our glutathione levels are going down, our stress is maybe going up, so I think it makes complete sense. Very cool.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, but we do see it and it sounds too good to be true, but if it's happening, believe it.

Melanie Avalon: I would say I'll put a link to that episode, but I don't think that episode will even remotely be out when this comes out.

Gin Stephens: People can anticipate it in the future.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. His book is called Dirty Genes, though. So, I'll put a link to his book in the show notes. What I love about him is he doesn't think you should like-- I mean, you can do genetic testing if you want, but he doesn't think you have to. He's saying that you can be pretty intuitive with what genes are off and making diet and lifestyle changes, and he is not all for-- because lot of people will be like, “Oh, I have MTHFR, take this supplement.” Or, you have this, take this supplement. And he's more about like diet and lifestyle approach, with very, very careful supplementation if you do that. So, yeah.

Well, 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. There will be a full transcript in our show notes, as well as all the links that we talked about in today's show. So, that's at ifpodcast.com/episode188. You can join our Facebook groups. Mine is IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life.

Gin Stephens: Join us for a Life Lessons group, Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri. If you're a reader of Fast. Feast. Repeat., we'd love to have you in the Delay, Don't Deny Advanced group, you have to read Fast. Feast. Repeat., and you have to answer the questions to show that you have.

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Then, you can follow us on Instagram. I'm actually posting pictures on Instagram now.

Gin Stephens: Oh my gosh, can I tell you something funny?

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: I told you earlier that I had a meeting with my publisher team, and they told me I had to be better on Instagram. I'm like, “Okay,” and they're like, “We could help you find someone who can help you.” I'm like, “Okay,” that sounds like, all right. “They're like, “I noticed you haven't posted in two months.” I'm like, “Oh, lordy.”

Melanie Avalon: Instagram scares me.

Gin Stephens: That makes me happy because I feel it's just because I'm 51, but you're young.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know. I don't like it, but I'm trying to do it.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. I'm trying too, but I've been told by my publisher that I have to do better with Instagram.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'll motivate you. You can motivate me.

Gin Stephens: I don't know how to use it. I'm just like, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: It makes me feel really stupid.

Gin Stephens: Me too. I feel so stupid just saying that.

Melanie Avalon: I can do the basic pictures, but the stories, I don't understand.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. They're like, “You can look at the story.” I'm like, “I don't know what that is. I don't know how to do that.”

Melanie Avalon: I don't understand. And people will tag me in stories, and it’ll be like, “Add to your story.” I'm like, “What does that mean? I don't understand what's happening.”

Gin Stephens: Okay, I feel better hearing that.

Melanie Avalon: But then, it is fun because you'll post it-- like I posted my most recent CGM yesterday, I think, and 42 comments and everybody's wanting to know-- they have thoughts. I was like, “Okay, this is kind of fun,” but I just like my Facebook group.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I know. And they were also like, “Now, we'd like to give you some tips for your Facebook group.” I'm like, “No, I don't need any tips.”

Melanie Avalon: You're like, “Oh, no, I'm good.”

Gin Stephens: They're like, “You could do this and that.” I'm like, “I'm not doing any of those things.” Just because that's not how the Facebook group works. We have a lot of people. We have 300,000 people in that one group. So, ah.

Melanie Avalon: I'm right there with you.

Gin Stephens: All right, I'm going to do it. I'm going to do it. I'm going to do Instagram.

Melanie Avalon: I think it's because it makes me feel really selfish because you're putting pictures of yourself.

Gin Stephens: I think that might be it too because I feel like it's-- I think you just nailed it.

Melanie Avalon: Because on my Facebook group, I'm posting links and I'm asking questions, and it's not about me.

Gin Stephens: Here's your-- “Yeah, I have a daily inspiration thread,” and stuff like that. I think you're right.

Melanie Avalon: But Instagram’s like, “Here's a picture of me with this supplement.”

Gin Stephens: Here's my dinner. Here's me doing this. Here's my shoe. [laughs] Okay, sorry for everyone who loves Instagram.

Melanie Avalon: So, follow us on Instagram.

Gin Stephens: We're going to be a lot more interesting soon.

Melanie Avalon: You'll know all of our insecurities when you--

Gin Stephens: Is there a book that would teach me a tutorial? I'm not kidding.

Melanie Avalon: I think you probably just need to hire somebody. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I don't know how to do that either. But they're going to send me some people. That sounds so weird. Apparently, when you're a New York Times bestselling author, you have to bring it.

Melanie Avalon: You got to have the Insta.

Gin Stephens: All right. I'm going to try to bring it.

Melanie Avalon: I do post every Friday for the episode-- Well, Friday or Saturday for my episode, but it's a picture of the episode. And I know they say that's like not-- it needs to be pictures of you. I'm like, “Okay.”

Gin Stephens: I'm also really terrible at selfies.

Melanie Avalon: I hate selfies.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm not good at it. I always look goofy. So, for goofy pictures of me and pictures of cats, follow me on Instagram. [laughs] No, it's going to get better. You'll see. Okay, 2021, that's my year. That's the year I'm going to really do Instagram. Okay, we can do it. We did just talk about habits on the Life Lessons podcast. And we both reread, refreshed ourselves with James Clear’s Atomic Habits, and you just have to just do it.

Melanie Avalon: I was talking about next day I have makeup on, I basically when I make up on, I stock-- I'm like, “Okay, we're done up. Let's take pictures with everything ever.” Maybe change the outfit, so it looks like a different day. And then, I'm like stocked up. So, I have about five more that I have stocked.

Gin Stephens: See, I put on makeup every day.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't. I don't have to, then.

Gin Stephens: All right. Well, good talk.

Melanie Avalon: Good times. So, follow us on Instagram, guys. Oh, yeah. I'm @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens on Instagram. All right. Well, I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right. Bye-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! 

 

 

Nov 15

Episode 187: Blood Sugar Variation, Flexibility, Yen Yoga, Collagen, Elastin, Losing Weight A Second Time, Berberine, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 187 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, New Members Get 2 New York Strips And 4 Top Sirloin Steaks When They Place Their First Order At Butcherbox.com/ifpodcast

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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, New Members Get 2 New York Strips And 4 Top Sirloin Steaks When They Place Their First Order At Butcherbox.com/ifpodcast

3:25 - 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!

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #60 - Wim Hof

INSIDE TRACKER: Go To Melanieavalon.com/Getinsidetracker And Use The Coupon Code MELANIE30 For 30% Off All Tests Sitewide!

16:00 - Listener Feedback: Miranda - Answer to Paige’s Flexibility Question Ep. 173

25:00 - Listener Q&A: Katie - Second Try Has Been BRUTAL

27:45 - BIOPTIMIZERS: Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save An Extra 10% On The Immunity Protection Stack

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #65 - Mira And Jayson Calton

46:10 - Listener Q&A: Amanda - Berberine

Keto Before 6®

51:10 - BLUBLOX: Go To BluBlox.com And Use The Code ifpodcast For 15% Off!

Join Our New Facebook Group: Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 187 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting? Then this show is for you.

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

Friends, Black Friday is coming up and I'm about to tell you how you can get early access to ButcherBox’s free steak sampler. We're talking two free grass-fed New York strips and four grass-fed top sirloins. Do not miss this. We are huge fans around here of ButcherBox. They make it easy to get high-quality humanely raised meat that you can trust shipped straight to your door. I hardcore research their practices, you guys know I do my research, and what they're doing is incredible. Their beef is 100% grass fed and grass finished. Their chicken is free range and organic. Their pork is heritage breed. And super importantly, they are all about caring for the lives of both their animals and the livelihoods of their farmers, treating our planet with respect and allowing us to enjoy better meals together.

By cutting out the middleman at the grocery store and working directly with farmers to ship directly to the consumer, they're making it actually affordable to get this amazing high-quality meat which has helped supporting the future of our planet. They have boxes that can fit every single need. So, if you want more steak or more seafood or more chicken, it's all there. And those meals come frozen for freshness, packed in an eco-friendly, 100% recyclable box. Their cattle are all 100% grass fed, roaming on pasture with room to graze. Their chickens are raised humanely, no cages, crates, or crowding, and using controlled atmosphere stunning practices to minimize stress in the animals. They uphold the strictest of standards in the seafood industry, which as I found out really crazy things go down in the seafood industry. It's shocking. If you want to learn more about that, check out my blog post about it at melanieavalon.com/butcherbox.

To get early access to Butcherbox’s insane Black Friday special, just go to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast or enter the promo code, IFPODCAST, at checkout, that will get you two free grass-fed New York strips and four free grass-fed top sirloins all in your first box. This is an insane offer. Again, that's butcherbox.com/podcast for early access to ButcherBox’s Black Friday steak sampler.

And one more thing before we jump in. Are you looking for the perfect gifts this holiday season for yourself and others? Well, the average male uses 6 skincare products per day, the average female uses 12. And as it turns out, conventional skincare and makeup is full of toxins. We're talking things like endocrine disrupters, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight, and even carcinogens linked to cancer. So, while you may be fasting clean, you may be putting compounds directly into your body during the fast that can be affecting both your health and weight loss. Thankfully, there's an easy solution.

There's a company called Beautycounter and they make an array of skincare makeup products that are extensively tested to be safe for your skin. You can feel good about all of the ingredients that you put on. Their products are even tested multiple times for heavy metals. And for the holiday season, Beautycounter has so many amazing gift sets. These are bundled products at a discount, and they make incredible gifts. Think about it. You can get the products for yourself or for your friends and family and help clean up their skincare, all in disguise of gift-giving. Works pretty well!

You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you're trying to figure out exactly which products to get, check out my beauty counter quiz, that's at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz. And for the latest discounts and giveaways from me, definitely get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. All right, now back to the show.

Hi everybody, and welcome. This is episode number 187 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 good. Can I tell you that my bathroom is almost done?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, like finally?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, we've had the plumbing, the lighting was done yesterday. And so, all we need now is the towel bars-- oh, and the medicine cabinet and the mirror have to be hung, then we will be finished. But you could actually go in there and do everything a bathroom is supposed to do. Just you can't look in the mirror or hang anything up.

Melanie Avalon: That is a plus.

Gin Stephens: I know, it is very exciting.

Melanie Avalon: And then, is it just the yard that you're working on?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, we're going to be working on a backyard remodel. That's going to be huge. Huh!

Melanie Avalon: To your tropical oasis with Paris?

Gin Stephens: Will see. Yeah, I'm excited. I can't wait. I miss my screened porch. I looked at my Facebook memories today, and one year ago today I was sitting on the floor in my old house with workmen. We were getting ready. It was under contract and we were getting ready to close at the end of the month. So, gosh, so many memories from that. But I haven't had a screened porch since we left that house.

Melanie Avalon: I didn't realize you had a screened porch.

Gin Stephens: At my other house? Oh yeah, I loved it. I sat out there all the time.

Melanie Avalon: I would not sit up there all the time. Actually, I would during the winter.

Gin Stephens: Mainly, I'm out there in the summer, in the spring, in the fall. When it's cold, no. But I like it the rest of the time.

Melanie Avalon: Speaking of the cold, guess what showed up at my door yesterday and made my life?

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know, unless it was a chest freezer.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that would really make my life. You know I had Wim Hof on the show recently? It was a celebratory Wim Hof giftbox with the official-- Oh, it's so exciting. I had a galley of the book. So, I had a pre-release, not finalized version. So, it was like the hardcover actual version, like a Wim Hof towel that says, “Breathe mother F,” because he always says that, that's his phrase. And then, an ice cube tray and a motivational magnet. Oh, my goodness.

Gin Stephens: That's so fun!

Melanie Avalon: My day was made. So, I have a CGM update.

Gin Stephens: Oh, okay, how's that going?

Melanie Avalon: It's going well. I don't know-- today might be the last day. I'm actually interviewing Levels tomorrow. And then, I'm interviewing Nutrisense in a month, but I had a huge epiphany. So, we were talking just a second ago, you and I. I recently did the-- so InsideTracker, which is a David Sinclair affiliated company. They do a lot of genetic testing and blood testing and things like that. And they have a new InnerAge thing. They test, I don't know, it's like 12 key biomarkers to determine your “biological” or your real age. The good thing was that said I was younger than I am. So, I was like, “Okay, that's a plus.” But what was really interesting was I measured my blood sugar on it, and I guess just because of the timing of it-- and it matched my CGM for the time that I got it, but the timing of it, my blood sugar was 79, or something, which is my good number. Historically, I always feel really good in the high 70s.

But looking at my CGM over the past few weeks-- we talked about this last show, it fluctuates so much, even during the fast. If I hadn't been doing the CGM and I just done that one blood test, I would have been like, “Oh, I'm sure my blood sugar is always in the 70s then.” It made me realize getting a blood test and checking your blood sugar, you have no idea. You've no idea what that even means.

Gin Stephens: You don't know where you are on the curve exactly. It could be on the way up, on the way down. That could be your peak, that could be your valley. It's so interesting.

Melanie Avalon: It is. I'm just looking back at all the blood tests I've done historically and how I would so judge myself almost based on what the blood sugar was. Now, I've realized literally, depending on which minute I went in, it could have been--

Gin Stephens: I mean, 10 points higher. Yeah, it's crazy. That was the most eye-opening thing for me.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And then, the other thing was, how high would your blood sugar go after meals? After your curvy meals?

Gin Stephens: Gosh, I'm trying to remember. It's been over a month. I don't know, like 130 normally? That’s how it would go.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because I've been in 120s.

Gin Stephens: 120s, 130. One time, it went up a little higher than that, but I don't think it ever went out of the 130s. I don't know. I don't know where that data. I had it somewhere downloaded, but--

Melanie Avalon: Was it just through the FreeStyle Libre app or was it--?

Gin Stephens: It was, but then I found a website that you could sync it with. Let me see, I might have some notes.

Melanie Avalon: While you're looking, the interesting thing that I realized was eating lower carb meals or even fruit meals, my blood sugar, it would spike, but it would go like 110, highest like 120 and then pretty quickly go down, and then it would go down too far. But last night, I ate way more carbs than normal and, oh my goodness, it went up to like 200 something.

Gin Stephens: Oh my gosh. Okay, see, I found some of my data. This is just some very early data that I-- I went up to 135 one time. But normally, like after dinner, I would go up like 112. After pasta, I went up to 121.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because the highest I would really ever go when eating my normal foods was 120. But it would normally go to 110-ish, between 110 and 120.

Gin Stephens: Here's some data that I had. I had two pieces of toast and two eggs on top, and my blood glucose went up to 109 after two pieces of toast with eggs.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so last night, I ate some-- it's like Rice Krispies but there's no additives or anything like that. And it shot up to 200.

Gin Stephens: Wow, yeah, I never saw anything above-- Really, maybe 140 at one time. I never saw anything above, and I was like, “Oh my God, what's happened?”

Melanie Avalon: 217!

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I wish I had all that data. Even after the muffins, it didn't go up all that much.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it never really dropped hypoglycemic, did you, after meals?

Gin Stephens: No, not after meals. In the middle of the night, it got down in the tiny little red. I can't remember what the boundary was. Was it, like 69 was the boundary? It turns red. I can't remember. But I got down there just a couple times. But mostly it was not there.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, mine would always draw pretty well, although I was talking with Levels about it and they said a few things. And I'm excited because I'm interviewing them tomorrow, so I have so many questions for them. But they said that, A, if you sleep on the sensor, that can cut off circulation, like if it's on your arm, so that can lead to false like--

Gin Stephens: The middle of the night readings can be weird.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it could be that. And then, he also said that they never really test like historically people's blood sugar levels all night. So, we don't have a lot of data in general about what's normal for--

Gin Stephens: That's a good point.

Melanie Avalon: --nighttime, so yeah. Oh, and for listeners. A CGM is a continuous glucose monitor. I've just assumed that everybody knows what you're talking about. But it's basically a little thing that you put on your skin and it measures your-- What is it, interstitial fluid? To give you a sense of your blood sugar levels throughout the day constantly.

Gin Stephens: And it really is fascinating data and I really hope that it becomes more mainstream for people to use as a preventative health measure. It's not a trinket, it's not a fun toy. It's not something like, “Oh, look at this!” It's something that is powerful data. Yes, it's fun to see, it's interesting to see, but it's powerful data about how your body responds to these foods. And so, it can really make a difference when you choose. You're probably not going to choose that Rice Krispy thing again, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, no.

Gin Stephens: For me, though, when my blood glucose went up to 135, that was after coconut water, which really surprised me. I mean, I love coconut water.

Melanie Avalon: It's really interesting. It did make me feel better though about the fruit because I was stressing about the fruit. But now it's like, “Oh, well, compared to that.” So, maybe it was a good thing to experience.

Gin Stephens: I made sure to eat the way I normally eat when I was using it. I didn't test things in isolation. When I had the toast with eggs, that's how I would normally have it because I wanted to get a picture of how it looked with my normal day. My normal day really made me happy. My normal day, my blood glucose is within a tight little range and it goes up, but then it goes down. And it's a nice little gentle-- It looked good. It made me feel really good about it.

Melanie Avalon: I'm still a little bit sad because it seems that if I do my keto-ish like approach, it's pretty good, and the Levels app gives me a good metabolic score and it stays within the target range, but I would still in general like it like a little bit lower and then I would also like to be eating more fruit, but goals. The good thing is because it comes in two weeks cycles, the sensors, and I have Levels send me too. So, I have another one I can use. I have to try out Nutrisense and then Levels said they're going to start trialing other brand. So, I think I'll probably trial that as well. So, I think I have like-- what is that? 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, that's like 6 more weeks' worth of sensors that I can potentially play with. And then, I'm going to be like never again, not really.

Gin Stephens: It's just so interesting. I really think that people who are concerned about long-term health, before you start having prediabetes, that's when you would know, you could really dial in what works for you and then prevent. If health insurance companies were smart, they would let everybody have a trial of these to see what foods-- anyone who's interested. Maybe not everybody, not everybody cares. But for anyone who did, it shouldn't be so hard to get them. They should pay you to do them. It should be like, “We'll give you $250 if you wear this for two weeks and learn from your data.” I mean that would be a wellness strategy for these insurance companies and it would prevent them from paying out thousands of dollars later for sickness. Anyway, I'm not in charge of that. Nobody has to be!

Melanie Avalon: So, listeners, stay tuned, though, because I will be having two interviews with both companies, and I'll probably have discounts or some sort of offer. So, exciting! Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have some listener feedback, which is answer to "Paige’s Flexibility Question From 173," and it's from Miranda. She says, “Hello, Gin and Melanie. I've been listening to your podcast for two years now and I love all the great information you have to offer and your willingness to entertain so many questions from your listeners. I'm happy to be part of such a valued community. I'm just getting caught up on some older podcasts and have some answers for a question you had from Paige from Australia in episode 173 - does IF increase your flexibility? You weren't able to fully answer this, and I am happy to fill in some blanks for you.

I have been practicing yin yoga for over 10 years and teaching it for over six years. Yin yoga is a style of yoga that focuses on purposefully stressing our connective tissue to increase elasticity and ease of movement. It is thought to have been discovered by monks thousands of years ago to help them sit more comfortably during hours of meditation. Connective tissues are the plastic-like tissues in the body, the fascia, ligaments, tendons, etc., that wrap around and connect muscles and bones. And now, they're discovering it runs like a web through muscle and bone. With stress, injury, dehydration, and life, the connective tissue gets tangled, sticky, and begins to shrink wrap our bodies restricting movement. In order to "untangle" and rehydrate that connective tissue, it needs to be purposely stressed. This is what we do in yin yoga. Stressing muscle is done through resistance movement, with or without weight. We're all very familiar with this.

Stressing connective tissue requires consistent tension and/or compression. Usually, both are happening concurrently with minimal muscular effort for a period of time, usually four to six minutes. It takes an average of two to three minutes for the muscles in the area to let go so that the stress can be focused on the connective tissue. During this time, the area being stressed sends a message out, “here's where the work needs to be done.” And the fibroblasts know where to go to start untangling those bunched and knotted-up collagen and elastin fibers and start laying them out in nice, neat, stretchy layers.” And then she adds a little note, this is a very simplified explanation. “This works similarly to acupuncture, but on a wider scale and not literally a pinpoint. Think of a big knotted-up ball of yarn. You have both loose ends in hand, but when you pull, they don't go far. If you take the time, you can untangle the ball of yarn and then layer it back and forth into a nice, neat skein. Now, when you pull on the loose ends, you can pull for miles.

The answer to Paige’s question is twofold. First, Melanie, you are on the right track looking for studies about the effects on cartilage. And Gin, you were partway there when talking about being as flexible at 50 as you were when you were a teen dancer. I believe a lot of that can be attributed to IF and increased autophagy. When our bodies have the time, as they do with IF, they get to go around and clean up the broken-down proteins, i.e., collagen and elastin, which tends to get deprioritized as we age. So, you have less tangled messes that can get taken care of without a practice like yin yoga or acupuncture, although either or both would still be very beneficial.

The second part of the answer, and what I think Paige is experiencing as she was pretty recent in her IF journey, is looking at our flexibility and asking, ‘What's stopping us?’ That answer is either tension or compression or a combination. It's different for all of us in different positions or poses. An easy way to experience this is to stand up, bend over, and try to touch your toes. Can you do it? If not, what's stopping you? Is it the tight sensation you feel in your lower back or in your hamstrings or calves? That's tension. That can be worked through over time with consistent practice. Are you able to touch your toes? Yes. Can you fold completely in half with your head between your knees, your knees on your ears? Why not, what's stopping you? Now, you're likely experiencing compression.

Compression comes in three major forms. Soft, medium, and hard. Soft compression is how it sounds, soft tissue meeting soft tissues, big fat. Using the same example as above, envision an obese person doing the same exercise. Let's pretend they don't have too much tension stopping them from doing that forward fold. They will likely be stopped by the compression of their belly pressing against their thighs. They may still be able to touch their toes or the floor because that can somewhat displace and make space for that to happen. With IF, as we lose this thigh and belly fat, we can increase flexibility. This position in particular will feel a little more comfortable, at least from the compression side of things. And we may start to meet our tension threshold in our lower back and our hamstrings now that we have more flexibility/range of motion. This sensation will likely change as our bodies change.”

Melanie Avalon: Can I interject really quick? So, is she saying that literally losing the weight, it's like a physical barrier that's creating?

Gin Stephens: Yes. When I was obese, I couldn't reach down and paint my toenails. My belly got in the way. 100%.

Melanie Avalon: That is so interesting. I mean, it makes complete sense. I just never really thought about it that way.

Gin Stephens: Yep, I've been there. It's true. I had to sit differently. I couldn't sit cross-legged. And there are a lot of ways I couldn't move. I mean shaving your legs, things like that just were so different to do. It's hard to even remember.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Putting on shoes, all those things. But, yeah, and now I appreciate being able to just do whatever, use my body however I want to. All right, back to her comments. “Medium compression is interesting and what we often experience in our joints. This is a bone-flesh-bone sandwich. Try sitting on the floor cross-legged style. Do you feel a pinching in your leg creases? This is medium compression. It often feels pinchy. If that position feels completely comfortable to you, great.” It does, by the way, I can sit like that. Can you sit cross-legged comfortably, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Pretty sure.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I do all the time. “But I'm sure you've experienced the same sensation in other positions at some point in time. Medium compression often doesn't change in people unless they have “fat show” or “deposits” around the tissues of the joints, most likely in someone more obese. Again, as those fat stores are being used for energy and decreasing in size, there is more space for movement, which equals more flexibility. IF for the win again.

And finally, hard compression. This is bone-to-bone compression. Think of trying to do side splits. Many people can do front to back splits.” Yep, that's the only kind I could do. “But several of those still cannot do side splits.” Yep, I could not do those ever. “Why? Hard compression. They can spread their feet from side to side, have zero tension in their inner thighs, slide down and down, close to the ground and then stuck. What's stopping them? Their hip sockets. The head and neck of their femur fitting into the cup of their pelvis does not have the optimal sizes and angles to make this happen. In yin, we say this person doesn't have skeletal permission to go any further. There is no amount of yoga or stretching that will make this happen for them. Even IF will not change this. This is where we learn to accept our limitations. So, yes, IF can increase your flexibility and I hope this will help people have a little better understanding of their functional anatomy.

If you notice changes in flexibility and increases in the range of motion in your body, please be aware that it's critical to also strengthen the muscles in these areas to prevent injury. We need to have the strength to support the range of motion. Of course, I recommend yoga for this, more flow styles as they strengthen and lengthen muscles at the same time. If you do resistance training, it's very important that you have a great stretching routine on your rest days or at the end of your workouts. Try to hold your stretches with minimal muscular effort for three to four minutes instead of the likely 20 to 30 seconds you're used to. Thank you for listening to this long answer. But I know how much you both dig into research and I didn't want to sell you short.” That was great. Thank you, Miranda.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I learned so much. Who knew?

Gin Stephens: I did not know.

Melanie Avalon: I liked her part about this-- What did she say about the skeletal--?

Gin Stephens: Limitations. It's true. Yeah. I was never going to be able to do a side split no matter how hard I tries.

Melanie Avalon: It's good to know that that was not in the cards. Yeah, good to know that with IF and the weight loss and everything, that it can definitely affect our flexibility. All right, shall we move on to our questions?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, to start things off. We have a question from Katie. The subject is, “Second try has been brutal.” And Katie says, “I sometimes wonder if my metabolism is irreparably damaged. I'm so discouraged and ready to give up and regain, no pun intended, that unfortunate fat girl mindset that Gin has often described as accepting that you're just going to get fatter and fatter.”

Gin Stephens: I want to interject there. I felt that way for a time. So, for people who haven't heard me say that, there was a time in my life I gave up, and it was sometime around 2012 to 2014 when I just got bigger and bigger, no matter what I did, I couldn't stick to anything. And I just said, “You know what? This is just me. I'm going to be in this big body.” I gave up. But not forever. I didn't give up forever. Thank goodness. All right. Back to you, Melanie.

Melanie Avalon: That's so surreal to me. Till 2014, you were still--?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, 2014 is when I was 210 pounds.

Melanie Avalon: I know we talked about this a lot but the reason that's so mind blowing to me is that-- because I so associate us meeting the first time that I moved to Atlanta, and I moved to Atlanta first time in 2014.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, we didn't meet till 2017.

Melanie Avalon: Was it '17?

Gin Stephens: It was '17. It was early in 17 because the podcasts-- and my book had come out already by the time we met. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, I guess it was like the tail end of when I was in Atlanta the first time but it's just really surreal to me that time in Atlanta the first time around seems so short. So, the fact that all of that transformation happened all during when I was in Atlanta, and we still met when I was in Atlanta--like, that's a really quick turnaround all things considered.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it really was because I really just was like, “This is it. This is going to happen.” And it did. Yeah, it was. I'm really, really, really proud of that. Looking back, it's hard to remember, I was just talking about how hard it was to paint my toenails and bend around and move. But you just feel hopeless because you've tried so hard. I tried so hard. I talk about this a lot for people who listen to intermittent fasting stories. This theme comes up again and again. And that's my other podcast, Intermittent Fasting Stories, for people who have not listened to that one. But people over and over share how they were successful in so many areas of their life, good at things, smart, well educated, but could not get a handle on the weight. It's really frustrating.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, inspiring, though. Very inspiring.

Gin Stephens: It is, but it's not you, it's biology, it's your body. I wrote this in Fast. Feast. Repeat. It's not that you have failed diets, diets failed you.

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Melanie Avalon: So, back to our question. She says, “I don't want to be back in that place, but I'm starting to feel like I don't have a choice. Not to say bad things about body positivity, but I don't feel positive or healthy in the current permutation of my body, no matter how much I try to regurgitate the mantras of health at all sizes, and it's the size of your heart that matters, not the size of your waist. Tell that to an obese person with an enlarged heart. Originally, I started IF 16:8 in 2017. It worked marvelously. I lost 30 pounds in less than two months without even really thinking about it. I took it very naturally. I figured I'd found the magic formula that would finally work for me after literal decades of failed diets. Naturally, I plateaued but stuck with the process. My doctor even told me how proud she was of me.

Then, my personal life kind of imploded. Last year, my father passed away less than two years after my mother did. Plus, the stress of an estate sale, the holidays, putting the house on the market, and trying to find a place to live. Needless to say, my discipline with food went straight down the toilet. I regained most of the weight I had lost.

Fast forward a year, I'm finally mostly settled. I'm in a new house, I have a decent nest egg. I'm generally in a good place emotionally. For once in my life, I feel fairly secure. I decided it was time to start fasting again. I thought I could slip right back in no problem since the first time it came naturally and worked marvelously. Boy, was I wrong. I've been at it about a month and the only way I can describe it is agonizing. Just as agonizing as all the other diets I did in the past and eventually failed it. It's 100% stagnation and frustration. Before, I ate whatever, and the weight dropped off. Now, no matter what I eat, it stays put. Before, it was easy for me to wait until 2 or 3 PM to eat and stop at 10 or 11. Now, I feel hungry all the time, regardless of how nutritious my meals are. I know, I know. I can already hear you both saying it's only been a month, but what a terrible month it has been, especially contrasted with how easily I fell into it before. What is happening?

I'm 39, so it's a little early for menopause, though it's not totally out of question. I don't have any other symptoms of early menopause though. Does my body need longer to recalibrate the second time or something? I thought once your body learned to be fat-adapted, it remembered. That seems to not be the case with me. Is this a common problem? Help. I love you guys so much. I'm a fan of this podcast and your individual podcast too. Thank you for all your help and advice.” And then, I sent her an email and I asked her what she was eating. She said, “It depends on the day. Sometimes, it's an Impossible Whopper with onion rings. Sometimes it's nutritious Poke Bowl filled with vegetables, beans, and tofu. Sometimes, it's Taco Bell. Sometimes, it's [unintelligible [00:32:42] stir fry with garlic, onions, peppers, snap peas, spinach, mushrooms, and baby corn. Sometimes, it's protein shakes and bars, which I don't necessarily think are the best. But I found that if I have them around, I will have fewer Burger King and Taco Bell days. I also started adding maca root to my protein shakes as suggested by Anna Cabeca on your show, since I also have hormone balance and energy issues. Katie.”

Gin Stephens: That’s a lot. And I see that the shift happened when you had the very stressful time of your life. You were having a lot of trouble in your personal life. Your father passed away, you recently had lost your mother, lot of stress, the holidays. And then, we've had a pandemic. So, I don't want to make light of that. But even people who did not have all the other stresses that you're going through, people have had trouble this year just because of the stress that the pandemic and all of that-- I mean, even if you had been safe at home and you haven't had any thing that is really gone wrong for you, still, the word 'pandemic,' the way that everything is set uncertain, watching the news, it has been a terribly, terribly stressful year. So, I want you to not discount all of that. The fact that it seems like you're wanting to eat, it's very likely to have something to do with the stress response, like you are just in-- you're craving food early in the day. You can't wait till 2 or 3 to eat. You’re also only a month in, which I know you said that we would say, but it is true. So, think about this. A lot of stress. You've been through a lot. You're hungry, hungry, hungry. You're fighting with it, and it's only a month in.

So, I want you to think back to when you first started in 2017. I bet you approached it with a different kind of mindset. I bet you were just trying it, you were excited, you were eased in, you let it unfold. You felt great. But right now, it feels like you're starting in a different mental place. I would encourage you if you don't have Fast. Feast. Repeat., get it. If you do have it or once you get it flip to the Mindset chapter. That is a really, really important chapter that I think could make a difference for you. Start working on changing yourself talk.

You may also want to kind of ease back a little bit. It sounds like you're really trying. Sometimes, when you try, try, try that makes it actually even harder. Maybe you're forgetting that it was a little challenging at the beginning when you first started, and you've forgotten what it was like in 2017. And you're expecting to just all of a sudden be able to wait till 2 or 3, when really, maybe it took you a while. I also want you to really examine your fast and make sure you're fasting completely clean. You didn't mention that at all. You also said you started intermittent fasting in 2017. That was a long time ago. That was before-- my guidelines for the clean fast have certainly evolved, the more I've learned and the more people I have worked with over the years since 2017. So, I really want you to examine what you're drinking. Are you putting lemon in your water? Are you putting a little splash of something in your coffee or sweeteners? That sort of thing. Is it having a little apple cider vinegar? Really, really think to anything that you're having. Stick to plain water, no flavors, nothing added. Sparkling water, no flavors, nothing added. Black coffee, plain tea, avoid all those fancy herbal teas with the fancy names. Just stick to tea, actual tea, and see if that helps.

Instead of forcing yourself to wait till 2 or 3, maybe say, “Alright, I'm going to open at noon. And I'm going to have a high-quality lunch. And then later, I'm going to have a high-quality dinner.” And you could probably fit in a six-hour window with a lunch and a dinner that are not giant lunch, giant dinner, but a satisfying lunch, satisfying dinner, within six hours. If you're white knuckling it, I want you to switch things up and try them, do different things, and see until it feels good again.

Also, work to de-stress. Anything that makes you feel good and helps you relax, add those things in, whether it's a hot bath, a sauna, working out, reading a book, anything. Listening to music, anything that helps you de-stress and feel better. What would you say, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think you said a lot of great things. I recently interviewed the Caltons, they wrote a book called Rebuild Your Bones. It's about osteoporosis and bone health. But it's really about the role of micronutrients in our health and how our modern diets, it's hard to supply enough nutrients and how things like stress, really, really deplete a lot of our nutrients and our bodies aren't getting all the nutrients they need. It's very likely that we won't ever feel satisfied or full. And you went through such, such an intense stressful period that I feel probably when you first started IF, it was working for you, there wasn't this whole stress aspect. And then, this is what Gin was talking about, going through that really, really stressful time, it can really, really deplete a lot of nutrients in our body can be really taxing on our body and have a lasting effect. And I think when a lot of us go through that, it can make everything harder, including fasting, including adhering to a diet and everything.

And I say that to encourage you because I think focusing on nutrition could be really, really huge. Originally, she didn't say what she was eating, and if we just had that question without knowing what she was eating-- because you were saying that when you first did IF, you ate whatever you wanted, and the weight just dropped off. And now, it doesn't seem to matter how nutritious your meals are. What I'm wondering is because just hearing your meals, it sounds like you do alternate between meals that are potentially more on the nutritious side, like whole foods based meals, and then a lot of fast food. While a lot of people can do IF and eat fast food and see weight loss and experience the benefits, I still think food choices are really, really huge. So, I think it can be hard to know if you're doing well regardless of what you're eating, if you're not eating a certain way for a long enough period of time. So, what I mean by that is, say one day you eat more on the nutritious side. But then, the next day, it's more fast food and then it's back and forth.

Unless you're eating really nutritious meals for a longer period of time, it might be hard to know if you really are feeling this way regardless of what you eat. If you're open to not eating the fast food and focusing more on like whole foods-- and when I say whole foods, I don't mean store, I mean whole foods, especially that the foods that really appeal to you and that are really high in nutrition. I would give that a try. I would almost say in the situation that it might even be better if you're open to it. If you're really struggling with hunger, I would almost say try a spiel of-- because what windows she's doing?

Gin Stephens: She didn't say. She said she's having a hard time getting to 2 or 3, which is why I suggest, don't force it, if you're not feeling good yet. Even though before you eat-- but right now is different.

Melanie Avalon: It was easy for me to wait until 2 or 3 and stop at 10 or 11. So, she was eating like an eight-hour window from 2 to 10. So, I would almost suggest-- I don't know why I say almost. I would actually suggest that you maybe consider trying a not a fasting approach right now and actually just a food approach and eat when you're hungry, but eat whole foods and see if you can get more in touch with your satiety signals and how you're reacting to food without the fast food and things like that that might be hacking your cravings and making you want more. And then, after cleaning that up for a little bit, then move into the eating window and you might find that it's a lot easier to have a fasting window. I just really think the food choices are really huge. I think a lot of people think that when they do IF that it means they can eat whatever they want during the window. And that doesn't always work, especially if it's meals that are not that nutritionally supportive.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I have a section in Fast. Feast. Repeat. about the phrase, “Eat whatever you want” and that people misunderstand it. When we say eat whatever you want, we mean eat whatever you want. We're not going to say this is the style you must eat to do intermittent fasting. But it doesn't mean eat whatever you want! Like, often use the analogy, you're a college freshman with your first meal plan and mom's not there. That happens for a lot of people. They've been careful eaters and then they start intermittent fasting, that is portrayed as eat whatever you want and then they throw all the other out the window. I was already eating like a college freshman before I started intermittent fasting. I did not have good nutritional habits. Over time, my tastes did change. I've talked about that a lot. But most of us are going to find, we feel better when we eat nutritious foods. That's just a fact and that's what our bodies need. So, really keep in mind that, yes, you can eat whatever you want, but that's not permission to eat whatever you want.

Melanie Avalon: Few other things, she says that she has protein shakes and bars, which she doesn't think are the best. But if she has them, she's less likely to eat Burger King or Taco Bell. What other foods could you keep on hand, whole foods that would also if you eat them, make you less likely to eat Burger King or Taco Bell? You're the one in control, you're the one in charge here, you're the one choosing what you want to buy what you keep in your house what you have access to. So, I'm sure there are foods you can find that you do think are the best and that you can keep on hand and that you could eat and have fewer of the fast-food days. Also, if you're drinking protein shakes, that's something actually, for example, that I would suggest switching that to whole foods protein. Instead of a protein shake, have chicken breast or steak or something because it's going to be much more satiating. I don't see really any reason to, especially if you're struggling to lose weight, to make all of these calories so easily assimilated.

Gin Stephens: Can I tell you what I found recently that has been just amazing for opening my window? I don't have an official affiliate relationship with them, although I'd love to. Hello, Daily Harvest, send me an email. Daily Harvest, I've been using them after I saw several people recommend them. And, yes, gin@intermittentfastingstories.com, Daily Harvest, I would love to hear from you. But I can't figure out how to contact them because I would love to have them sponsor my podcast.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, what did they do?

Gin Stephens: They have food, it is-- I mean, I know it's not all-- it's a lot of grain in there, some grain, not all grains, but it's some things you probably wouldn't eat, but it's whole foods and it comes frozen. And they have bowls, and they have flat-breads, and they have smoothies, but the ingredients list is so clean and good.

Melanie Avalon: Are they plant based?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: I think they might have emailed us before.

Gin Stephens: Well, see if you could find that email because I just found them as a person. Gin Stephens, the person. And I have been opening my window every single day with one of their soups or one of their bowls. My husband and I will split one of their smoothies after dinner as a dessert. They don't work well for me on an empty stomach, but they work great as a dessert. We'll just share one. They are so good. If you go to ginstephens.com on the Favorite Things tab, I do have a link there that you can use to save money. It's not official, like sponsorship or anything. It's just like any person could share their link. That's what I'm doing. But it's on the Favorite Things tab at ginstephens.com. But it's also really, really tasty, and I'm not plant based. So, I might have one of their bowls and it might have lentils in there plus a ton of veggies, maybe kale. But it's so quick, you can just pop it in the microwave.

I'm going to cook a big dinner later and I cook it and prepare it, but I don't want to also fuss around with something to open my window. So, their lentil bowl with all the veggies that I can pop in the microwave, maybe I'll throw a little sour cream on there. Yes, that flavor profile that would do well with some sour cream. And I am just so satisfied. Instead of grabbing the cheese and crackers again, I'm having this really nutritious food. So, I'm just a fan. I'm really excited and recommend it. The food is so good. And my husband loves it, I love it. And it's quick. See, that's the thing. I'm busy, I'm working during the day and then I'm going to cook a full meal later for dinner, I don't also really have the time to-- and I was finding myself always grabbing broccoli and hummus or cheese and crackers. And I was in a rut just because I could grab that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think that's a great suggestion. I would really focus on the food choices if it was me.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think that's good advice. All right. We have a question from Amanda. Amanda says, “I started listening to the podcast last week on episode 41 now. I remember you mentioned berberine and I want to know if I can still take it without a meal because I've tried to do one or two 40-hour fast a week. Bottle says once daily with meal or as directed by a healthcare professional. I typically have a window later in the day for regular days, just not sure about taking it on 40-hour fast days. I just bought it today. So, I want to know the best way to take it before I start. I've been intermittent fasting since February of 2020.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, berberine. So, this would actually be a really good situation to have a CGM to see how you react to berberine during the fast. So, for listeners berberine is-- Well, okay. So, there's a drug called metformin that a lot of listeners are probably familiar with. It's often prescribed for diabetes, but it can have really remarkable effects on lowering blood glucose levels, lowering HbA1c, discouraging the liver from producing glucose, things like that. Oh, and activating ANPK, which is one of the main genes that we activate during fasting that has a lot of the beneficial effects of fasting.

So, the reason I say all that is berberine is a natural plant compound that has been found in studies to have very comparable effects to metformin without a lot of the potential side effects of the pharmaceutical. Studies have found that by taking berberine, that it can decrease insulin resistance, just in general can make the insulin in your body be more effective. It can help your cells break down sugars, so use sugar more effectively.

Like I said, it does decrease sugar production in the liver, and I mentioned this before, but one of the most mind-blowing things to me is that in diabetes, the majority of the elevated blood sugar is actually not coming from the diet, it's coming from the liver producing sugar. Do, berberine can interfere with that process, and it might actually even support beneficial gut bacteria, which is really interesting. So, point being, I actually ordered some berberine after doing all this research. It's usually suggested that you take it right before meals, like three times a day. I assume you could take it during that long fast but my only concern would be, depending on how you're reacting to it-- Did she say she started taking it already?

Gin Stephens: No, she wanted to wait.

Melanie Avalon: And she's going to do a 40-hour fast. You might find-- if your blood sugar is already low, on that long fast, the only thing I would be worried about would be if it dropped you too low and then you got symptoms of hypoglycemia. So, that would be something that you'd have to experiment with.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I probably would just follow the directions of the bottle and not try to take it in a long fast. I just wouldn't. I would just take it once a day with the meal, like it says, or if you're not having a meal, don't take it.

Melanie Avalon: If you are measuring your blood sugar-- although we just talked to the beginning about how that might be all over the place. But that might be a situation where if you're long into your fast and you measure your blood sugar, and it's good, I probably wouldn't take berberine at that moment because probably just going to drop it lower. On the flip side, if you're long into your fast and your blood sugar's high, then you might want to take it and see what happens. I'm really excited now because I just ordered some and I want to see how it affects my CGM.

Gin Stephens: Well, definitely share that after you've tried it for a while and let us know what happens.

Melanie Avalon: I will. I do take oftentimes Keto Before 6, which is my Quicksilver Scientific, and it has a lot of ANPK activators. So, I just mentioned that ANPK is genetic pathways that are activated while we're fasting and is responsible for a lot of the benefits of fasting. And so Keto Before 6 contains-- it's different compounds that all activate ANPK. So, it contains berberine. It also has quercetin and I think resveratrol and milk thistle and a few other things. I've been taking a little bit of berberine via that, but I haven't taken like just berberine. So, I have to report back. But I'm a fan of the concept of berberine. I'm not a fan of most pharmaceuticals, but I don't really know how I feel about metformin. I'm very intrigued by metformin. I think if I ever were to experiment with a pharmaceutical, I would experiment with metformin out of curiosity.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, because a lot of people just take it for health benefits.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I know David Sinclair talks about it a lot. Peter Attia, I think, talks about it. It's one pharmaceutical that often comes up in discussion on a lot of the podcasts that I listened to about the potential benefits. Some people will pretty much take it for life, kind of like aspirin. It doesn't do the same thing as aspirin but as far as “pharmaceuticals” that potentially might have more health benefits than not.

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We have a question from Heather. Subject is "Transition Period." And Heather says, “Hi, guys. I just started IF five days ago. I'm currently doing a six-hour eating window. My husband and I decided to start a healthier lifestyle and we each chose our own method. He is counting calories and I am attempting IF. I've absolutely loved IF so far. I'm the type of person that has in the past claimed to need food every 10 minutes. I truly didn't know that I would be able to maintain this lifestyle for more than one hour. I know, I'm crazy. Anyway, this week has been wonderful. I feel more energy throughout the day. I've not felt deprived at all, and I am enjoying my food so much more than I did when I was eating all day. I'm currently going through your podcast from the beginning and I'm on episode 11.” I hear you meant 11, that’s so long time ago.

Gin Stephens: I'm sorry if we gave bad advice on episode 11.

Melanie Avalon: Sometime, I'm going to have to go back and listen to just like a random episode from that time period. I might do that. She says, “I hear you mentioned the transition phase or period, and I'm curious how long that usually lasts. I've had moments in my fasting period where I'm tempted to reach for food out of sheer habit or quick moments where I feel hungry because my body is used to eating very often. Does this go away? I thought I would add that I've only lost about one pound so far. I would have been discouraged by this if it were not for your podcast. I'm trusting the method and I'm waiting for more results. Thanks so much.” All right.

Gin Stephens: All right, Heather is on day five. So, Heather, I hope that you fast forward to this new episode and hear it now. I really don't want you to expect any weight loss in the first 28 days. That's what I've got in my 28-Day FAST Start of Fast. Feast. Repeat. So, a pound and five days is actually really good. Remember, also, I don't want you to weigh every day and think of the fluctuations. I mean I do want you to weigh every day, but I don't want you to get caught up on the daily fluctuations. I want you to weigh daily and then once a week, calculate your weekly average. So, if you're on day five, you don't even have a week yet to have a weekly average. And, of course, I don't want you to do that till after your first 28 days.

So, on day 29, I'd like you to weigh again, and then weigh daily and once a week, calculate your weekly average because really, it's only the overall trend that matters. So, as far as the adjustment period, that really varies for everybody. Bert Herring talks in his book about three weeks. Three weeks to adjust. And I think that is actually overly optimistic. And maybe now with how everyone seems to have metabolic syndrome, prediabetes, people are just not in great shape starting out. I sure wasn't. When I started out, I wasn't in great shape, physically, I was obese. And so, three weeks is a little bit optimistic. So really, some people find it takes as long as 8 weeks, 12 weeks even, depending on you and your body, to really feel like you're starting to adjust to intermittent fasting.

And if someone's been obese or overweight for a long time, it can take even longer. A lot of that has to do with what your fasting insulin level is, and you're not going to know what that is unless you've had a test, and most people haven't. Melanie, someone was talking recently in the Facebook groups about trying to get a fasting insulin test, and her doctor's like, “That's not what you mean. You want to get a blood glucose test.” And she's like, “No, I want fasting insulin,” he's like, “No,” [gasps] And the doctor could not understand why someone would want a fasting insulin test, or couldn't figure out how to write it on the forum, didn't know what she was talking about. I'm not saying that to say bad things about doctors, because there's a lot of doctors who are using them and understand them and all of that. So, you probably don't have your fasting insulin levels. But if your fasting insulin levels are high, it's going to take time for that to come down and that's part of your body's adjustment before you'll see the benefits of fasting.

Long story short, we really could say three to eight weeks for the adjustment period, but it really can vary wildly. If you were someone who was eating keto prior to starting intermittent fasting, your body may already be fat adapted, and so your adjustment period might be very brief. I mentioned before on the podcast, in 2014, when I finally was able to start intermittent fasting and finally stick to it for the first time ever, I had been trying keto that whole summer, failing at keto. I mean I was doing it, I didn't lose any weight. I did it 100%, didn't lose a single pound. Now, I know that's not how my body feels best. But I probably became fat adapted, and I was definitely in ketosis. Wasn't losing body fat, probably because I was eating a lot. Eating a lot of fat, not having any need to tap into my body fat. But as soon as I switched to intermittent fasting and added that carbs, I felt immediately better, and I started losing weight right away. I didn't have to have an adjustment period. So, all that to be said, it really, really varies.

Melanie Avalon: I think that's great. I think you covered it.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. It's going to be months before Heather gets to this episode if she's listening from episode 11.

Melanie Avalon: Good times. Okie-dokie. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. If you'd like to submit your own questions for the podcast, 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 episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode187. Those show notes we'll have a full transcript, so definitely check that out. You can join our Facebook groups. I have IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life. Are we plugging your new Facebook group, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, I do have a new Facebook group if anyone is interested in things outside of intermittent fasting because I talked about that I've started a third podcast. We've actually recorded episode 0, which is our trailer episode and also episode 1. The Facebook group is Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri. The podcast will come out-- we're hoping for Episode 1, December 2nd is our target release date. And our first episode is all about sleep.

Melanie Avalon: I just recorded two back-to-back part one and part two episodes again with Dr. Kirk Parsley, listener Q&A on sleep and both of them are almost three hours.

Gin Stephens: We talk about Dr. Kirk Parsley and his Sleep Remedy on the podcast, but we also talk about the sleep chronotypes. You and I've talked about that before, right? I'm a lion, you're a--

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. What was it, a wolf or something?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think you're a wolf. Sheri is also a wolf, my friend Sheri. Late at night, yeah, Sheri’s a wolf. My cohost on the other podcast is a wolf, just like you. That'll be coming out December 2nd. The reason we decided to start with sleep is because we asked people what they were interested and hearing and that came up over and over. People are struggling with sleep.

Melanie Avalon: I know. I emailed the first heart one episode to my assistant and it was three hours. She was like, “I didn't realize there was so much to know about sleep.” And I was like, “This is just part one. There's a part two coming.” There's so many questions. There's so much. That was one of the good takeaways. Because so many people will say that we all are naturally early birds, and I asked him about that, and he was like, it's not really debated in the scientific literature about there being different circadian rhythms for people.

Gin Stephens: It's known that it's true, right? Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. He was like, it's not really controversial. And I was like, "Oh, okay. Then, why is everybody saying that we're all early birds."

Gin Stephens: I know. The early birds started that. People who are one way, really, really assume that everyone else should be like that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Kind of like with food and diet and everything.

Gin Stephens: I mean, I really think they're like, “Well, I wake up really early, and I feel great and I get a lot done. So, you should do that, too. And if you can't, you must be super lazy.” And that's how these things get started. And, no, it's not that you're super lazy or even lazy at all. You just have a different rhythm. You're more productive later in the day, and you could feel like a loser and a failure because you're fighting against your body.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. 100%. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. And I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right. I look forward to it.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

Gin Stephens: Bye.

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

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Nov 08

Episode 186: Wearing A Continuous Glucose Monitor, Calories In Calories Out, Wearable Weights, The Last 5 Pounds, Body Types And More!

Intermittent Fasting

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Welcome to Episode 186 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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SHOW NOTES

1:10 - 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!

Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri

13:00 - BUTCHERBOX: For A Limited Time Go To Butcherbox.com/ifpodcast To Get A Free Holiday Turkey In Your First Box!

28:55 - Listener Q&A: Samantha - Welcome to the Intermittent Fasting Podcast

wearable weights

36:45 - Listener Q&A: Josephine - Frustrating Plateau (Help!) + Feals

Visit myshapa.com and use the promo code IFStories to save $20

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #44- Cyrus Khambatta, PHD and Robby Barbaro, MPH

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

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44:40 - AUDIBLE: Go To Audible.com/IFPODCAST Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For A 30 Day Free Trial, Including A Free Audiobook! 

56:20 - FEALS: Go To feals.com/ifpodcast To Become A Member And Get 50% Off Your First Order, With Free Shipping!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 186 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting? Then, this show is for you.

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

Hi friends. Are you struggling to lose weight despite fasting clean? Maybe you're even making healthy food choices, fasting more, shortening your eating window, ramping up your exercise, and yet the weight won't budge? Well, we actually just found a major reason for why that may be.

As it turns out, there are compounds in our environment called endocrine disruptors. Meaning, they mess with your hormones. And studies show that a lot of these endocrine disruptors are actually obesogens, meaning they literally make you gain weight. They also make it hard to lose weight. These toxic obesogens are naturally stored in fat. So, when they enter your body, your body creates fat to store them and to protect you. Once they're in that fat, they then changed the genes in your fat stores so that you are more likely to store more fat and less likely to burn it. They can also affect your insulin signaling and boost your appetite so you want to eat more and store more fat. And most of us are actually exposed to these obesogenic endocrine disruptors daily in our skincare and makeup. That is actually one of the largest sources of these compounds.

Yep. As it turns out, when you're washing your face, putting on makeup, using lotion, or even putting on sunscreen, you are likely putting one up to 1300 compounds banned in Europe for their toxicity and obesity causing potential, but they're completely fine for use in US skincare. When you put them on your skin, you're making it that much harder to burn fat, and that much easier to store fat. So, if you're struggling to lose weight, you definitely, definitely want to clean up your skincare, ASAP.

You can do that easily with a company called Beautycounter. They make safe skincare and makeup products that are extensively tested to be free of endocrine disrupters, obesogens, and other toxic compounds. They are truly safe and supportive of your health. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you'd also like exclusive discounts, giveaways, and the latest on the science of skincare, definitely get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. So, are you fasting clean inside and out? Well, now you can. All right, now back to the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 186 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!

Melanie Avalon: Why are you fabulous?

Gin Stephens: I'm just really enjoying the new group that I have set up that I talked about last week for the new podcast that's coming. We're going to be recording our first episode this week. The name of the group for anyone who-- I hinted at it last week, but I didn't say the name. The name of the group is Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri. Sheri has one R. Life lessons with Gin and Sheri, join our community. It is not an intermittent fasting group, we will not answer your intermittent fasting questions. Even if you try to ask them, we will direct you to one of the other groups but it is really like-- such a small part of my life really is intermittent fasting. I have my daily eating window, and then there's the whole rest of my life. So, everything else that doesn't fit in the intermittent fasting box fits into this group. People are loving it. We're right at 5,000 members. People are sharing so many inspirational things, life hacks, laundry hacks, inspirational stories, funny photos. I mean, it's like, we just didn't realize what we were missing.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to join.

Gin Stephens: Join it. It is so much fun. And I dare you to try to ask an intermittent fasting question.

Melanie Avalon: I think I will.

Gin Stephens: Well, we're not going to approve it. [laughs] We have post approval on and we have three rules. But rule number three is, we do not answer intermittent fasting questions, please ask that in one of Gin's other groups, because we would be delighted to answer them there. Obviously, we don't mind answering intermittent fasting questions all day long, but not in the new group.

Melanie Avalon: That's really exciting. I am totally joining.

Gin Stephens: Well, please join. It's just such a breath of fresh air. I love it. I'm loving it. And my work is intermittent fasting, but I'm not only intermittent fasting. So, it lets me be myself in other ways, like I shared a laundry hack the other day and just all sorts of things. Anyway, join us.

Melanie Avalon: For listeners, we'll put a link to it in the show notes. The show notes will be at ifpodcast.com/episode186, which they also have transcripts now. Very exciting. I'm going to say that every time. I have something fun.

Gin Stephens: Oh, good, yay!

Melanie Avalon: Well, you actually already know this, but--

Gin Stephens: Okay. I'll pretend like I don’t. I'm going to pretend to be surprised. All right, go ahead.

Melanie Avalon: I am on the CGM train!

Gin Stephens: Oh, yay, I already knew that. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: You know what's really funny about the CGM train?

Gin Stephens: That's continuous glucose monitor for anyone who is not understanding the code, but most people probably did. But just in case.

Melanie Avalon: That's funny, yeah, I did put up an Instagram post about it and I just said CGM, and somebody was like, “What's a CGM?” And I was like, “Oh, I guess I should clarify.”

Gin Stephens: Computer Generated Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Yep, basically. What's funny, interesting is I'm poking and tricking myself with things all the time as a biohacker, of course, nothing illicit, but injecting glutathione, and checking my blood and I have no problem doing that. But I was really scared to do it.

Gin Stephens: It's just the unknown.

Melanie Avalon: It looks intimidating. For listeners, what it is, a continuous glucose monitor. Full disclosure, I am going to be testing two different brands, and see which I like better.

Gin Stephens: And then you're going to tell me, and I'm going to get one?

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, I'm going to bring them on-- I'll have some episodes-- I'm actually deciding I might bring both companies on the show. I think I'm probably going to interview both of them. And if there's valuable information in both, I might air both of them. But I probably will in the end have one that I prefer, obviously, I'm still thinking about navigating those waters. But in any case--

Gin Stephens: I feel like that would be valuable to them, though even if you decide not to go with theirs as the one you're endorsing. There will still be people that do go with theirs. They could reach some people or nobody.

Melanie Avalon: I feel really weird about it.

Gin Stephens: Just be real upfront with them and just say, “Here's what I'm doing.”

Melanie Avalon: I told both of them because the situation was one of them reached out to me. I don't remember how the first one-- I think the first company contacted me. So, I set them up, I was going to do an interview, I am doing the interview. But then, Paul Saladino, who I had on the show, he introduced me to another company, and he was like, “Just give them a try.” And I was like, “Well, I'm already working with another company.” And they're like, “Well, just try it out. You can compare them, see how it goes.” For listeners, I think it's probably the best of both worlds because I will have experience with both. But, yeah, I was intimidated because the way you put it on, the applicator-- Oh, that's what I was going to say.

Gin Stephens: Is it like the little plunger kind of a thing?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: The one I used for the PREDICT study was like that.

Melanie Avalon: What brand was the one for the PREDICT study?

Gin Stephens: The one for the PREDICT study was FreeStyle Libre.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, that's what I use, because I'm right on testing Levels, and they use FreeStyle Libre. And the other company I'm going to be testing is Nutrisense and I think they also use FreeStyle Libre. But, yeah, the way you put it on for listeners if you're curious, it's like Gin just said, it's like a plunger with a really intimidating looking needle in it.

Gin Stephens: And then it just feels like someone tapped you on the arm. It doesn't hurt at all. And the little needle thing is so tiny.

Melanie Avalon: You don't feel it.

Gin Stephens: When I took it off, I was like me, “Man, that's so little.” Well, it was longer than I was expecting it to be, but it's not thick. It's really-- [crosstalk]

Melanie Avalon: How do you take it off? I haven't gotten to that point yet. Do you just rip it off?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you do. Did you put an adhesive patch over it too?

Melanie Avalon: Yes, I put a Levels cover over it right now, branded. Did you?

Gin Stephens: They sent like a little like a big band-aid kind of a patch, but I don't like having things stuck to me. So, that's part of the problem. I didn't like all the adhesive that it left on my arm.

Melanie Avalon: I might have talked about this before-- yeah, we have talked about this. I like to remove decision fatigue by what I wear every day. I basically have three bathing suit cover ups made of terry cloth but they look like dresses. They are dresses sort of-- I basically wear them every single day. I just rotate them out. They're black with a white insignia and this patch is black with a white icon, so it matches.

Gin Stephens: But that's what you wear around the house. You don't wear that if you're going out, right?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, no, I wear it out.

Gin Stephens: You do, your bathing suit coverup?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it looks like a dress, though.

Gin Stephens: Is it strapless?

Melanie Avalon: No, it's a halter. You can look on my Instagram.

Gin Stephens: Okay. But you don't wear it in the winter?

Melanie Avalon: I do.

Gin Stephens: Would you like wear a sweater over it?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, like a jacket. I like cold.

Gin Stephens: That's true, you do. Trying to wrap my head around, you're like Steve Jobs with his one outfit.

Melanie Avalon: I really am.

Gin Stephens: Not me. I got lots of things.

Melanie Avalon: I know. When it gets really cold, I transition to five of the same shirts, but they're still short sleeves.

Gin Stephens: Oh my gosh, no.

Melanie Avalon: I can't wear long sleeves. I can't, like I can't. I'm getting anxiety thinking about it.

Gin Stephens: What's on your feet?

Melanie Avalon: During the winter?

Gin Stephens: Well, during the summer and then during the winter. I'm very curious about your shoes.

Melanie Avalon: For as long as I can, I wear flip-flops.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, me too.

Melanie Avalon: And then during the winter, I forgot what they're called. That's how much I don't like wearing them, tennis shoes.

Gin Stephens: See, I can't wear tennis shoes, cannot. My feet are crazy. My heels are very, very narrow. It's almost like my feet are triangular. They're wide at the balls of my feet, very narrow heels. So, nothing really fits well around my heel, like tennis shoes do not fit me right. They always run up and down. And I hate to wear socks. So, if Uggs ever go out of style-- because I wear Uggs when it's cold. I have some little moccasins that I wear but I don't like to wear socks. But if Uggs ever go out of style, I'll be the crazy old lady still wearing them. And I don't care because you don't have to wear socks. They're so cozy and comfy. I love them.

Melanie Avalon: I might get some Uggs. I'm getting inspired.

Gin Stephens: I just really like how cozy and comfy they are.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really upset though so far with what I've learned from my CGM.

Gin Stephens: What is that?

Melanie Avalon: So, a CGM, basically, rather than having to prick your finger to evaluate your blood sugar levels, it constantly monitors them. I'm really excited to do the interview because I don't think it's actually measuring your blood.

Gin Stephens: It's like inner-sidal fluid? Yeah, I don't know how to say it. I'm going out of my brain.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, when I interview them, I'm going to be like, “Tell me all the details on the science." But it's really cool because you get a picture of your blood and the blood sugar levels constantly.

Gin Stephens: And isn't it interesting how it varies, though? So much variation, even during the fast to the point that people who are like, “I'm so upset. I went and got my fasting blood glucose and it was XYZ.” I'm like, “Well, if you had been there 10 minutes ago, it would have been something different.”

Melanie Avalon: If you've been there one minute ago.

Gin Stephens: It's true! It varies like crazy. It shocked me.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, actually, that is a really good point about the blood sugar test at the doctor's office.

Gin Stephens: It got you somewhere on the curve. And so you might have been at the low of your curve or the high of your curve, but you don't know, and so to freak out, it's just-- Even if it got you on the low of the curve, you might be like, “Oh look, I'm fine,” when really you're not. I mean it could give you the complete wrong picture, which is what I'm like, “Why? Why are we--” Anyway.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, 100%.

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And what I've learned so far, which is a little bit upsetting to me, you know how I've been talking about how I was doing low carb for a long time and every time I tried to bring back fruit in carbs, I didn't feel like metabolically flexible with it? I was really hungry. Honestly, like white knuckling and powering through like I've been eating lots of like a higher carb, lower fat diet for a while that I just felt like it wasn't really working. I was getting blood sugar swings. And when I first put on the CGM, yeah, it didn't look good. And I was like, “This is upsetting.” I was like, “I'm going to go back to low carb and see what happens.” And I did and that is like fixing it, which is upsetting because I want to get back to higher carb again.

Gin Stephens: Well, I really would like to encourage you to try-- I mean, what I learned from mine, my blood sugar control is great when I combine carbs and fat. I know that you like to do one or the other, but have you tried it with the CGM one?

Melanie Avalon: Not with a CGM, but every time I've tried that with my diet, I feel awful.

Gin Stephens: Really? See, that's how I feel great.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like not functional.

Gin Stephens: All right. I need the fat and the carbs together. Gives me that nice little gentle curve, the up and down. It doesn't [swoosh sound] you know.

Melanie Avalon: I did get excited by one thing, though, which I mean, it's not really a good thing, but I'd always suspected it, and this confirmed it. So, it's good to know it's not all in my head. I always felt like I would get severely reactive hypoglycemia after meals, like my blood sugar plummets.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, mine did not, as long as I stuck with the carbs in the fat.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I will give it a thought. I think what I'm going to do is since I have so much testing I have to do because I've got to test them and I got to test the other company, I'm going to ride out this low carb for a little bit and then try to bring back the fruit again and see what happens. So, it's very interesting, though. So, listeners, the point is stay tuned because I will have more information and I will have probably-- or I will have like a discount or an offer or something. So, stay tuned for that.

Gin Stephens: Now, see, here's something interesting. I know that fruit and isolation doesn't work well for me. I already know that. Fruit itself, I think, does give me an issue, but I don't eat fruit by itself. I never do. I just never have. But when I do, if I just open my window with some pineapple, like you said you used to do--

Melanie Avalon: Well, I close it. In the past it would mitigate--

Gin Stephens: Well, the order does matter.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Because in the Ray Peat world, they always suggest combining fruit with protein because it mitigates, actually what I just talked about, but potential reactive hypoglycemia from processing protein without carbs. Sorry, I interrupted.

Gin Stephens: Oh, no, that's fine. But the same thing, fruit by itself doesn't work well for me either. Even like apples with peanut butter, you would think the peanut butter might give you enough to balance it. It just doesn't. Fruit is not my best food.

Melanie Avalon: It used to be my best food, and we're going to get back there, goals.

Gin Stephens: My best food is cheese and beans and dairy and grains. Oh, it really is, for real.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Good times. It's fascinating. Do people need to have this? Nope. But it's fascinating to have. It's fun to see. But empowering more than anything to realize that you really are a special snowflake, every one of us is different. And this can help us, if we can see the trends, it could keep us from going down the road of prediabetes, diabetes, and the worsening health benefits. I would think that every insurance company would want to get these machines into everybody's hands that would be willing to have one. Every insurance company should say, “These are for free for anybody who's willing to really dial in your health.” Not as a toy, but as a very powerful tool. But as I was saying, “Do you need one?” Well, it really just confirmed what you kind of already suspected, right?

Melanie Avalon: Something that you said at the beginning, it really is powerful to see how much it fluctuates. I do wonder though if some people-- if there's more like flatline, but I'm just looking at mine right now, I just scanned it. And since noon-- in the past two hours-- right now it says that it's 90, which is higher than I would like, but since noon, I think the lowest was 70 and it's fluctuating between that. So, it's really, really interesting to see how unique you are and how you shouldn't focus on any one number. I wonder if this is accurate too because mine says at night, I drop into the 40s.

Gin Stephens: Mine did not drop that low. No. That's interesting. You hibernated at night.

Melanie Avalon: It's like red on the graph.

Gin Stephens: Mine very rarely dipped into the red. It did a couple times, but not very often.

Melanie Avalon: For clarification, because we said that Gin and I both had the FreeStyle Libre because it's a medical device that requires a prescription. But there are companies-- so when I was saying Levels and Nutrisense, there are companies that are making it available to the general public.

Gin Stephens: They give you the prescription. They do the medical. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: So, I'm testing their apps too, because then they have an app that interprets it. With Levels right now it says that my metabolic score is 90%, which is exciting. When I first started, I was on the fruit, it was 53%. And then I switched to keto, and now I'm at 90%.

Gin Stephens: So, see, it really does help you figure out what foods work best for your body.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. I think I'm going to use it to-- because I just want to be eating a higher carb diet. So, I think I'm going to be really careful and see what I can do and keep it on point. I don't know, Paul Saladino, though talked about on his episode with Nutrisense about his CGM and apparently it was like ridiculously flatline. I do wonder if carnivore people-- some of them have that. Or anybody really.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that would be interesting. I don't know that a flatline is necessarily what we want, either.

Melanie Avalon: During the fast though, maybe.

Gin Stephens: I don't like completely flatline.

Melanie Avalon: Because if you're really ketogenic.

Gin Stephens: Well, it just shows your body's dumping out some of that glycogen that it had hanging around, that's when you go up.

Melanie Avalon: To a person on a ketogenic diet who's--

Gin Stephens: Wouldn't be having that, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I wonder.

Gin Stephens: But I mean, I know that but the thing that worries me, Melanie, about this is assuming that is what someone should be trying to get. That's the good question. Someone may tweak their diet to flatline when really, that's not the ideal state, which--

Melanie Avalon: This is helpful. These are good questions for me to talk about on the interview. Thank you.

Gin Stephens: And even so, someone might say, “Yes, you want to be flatline. But that doesn't mean it's true.” People say a lot of stuff.

Melanie Avalon: Because that's one of the things I really want to talk to them about because people often say that you want to mitigate-- I think I've talked about this before on this show. People say you want to mitigate high blood sugar after a carb meal, you should have a food combination so that it's a slow rise in blood sugar, but I actually feel maybe it's better to have a spike and then it goes down. It's processing those carbs, rather than--

Gin Stephens: Well, I know I feel better when it's slow. When I was eating their muffins that they had me eat for the study, it was more like-- the ones that were didn't have the fat. There were one kind of muffins were higher fat than the other kind, and I did better on the higher fat muffins, I think. I'm really excited to get my results back.

Melanie Avalon: When do you get the results?

Gin Stephens: Whenever they send them. Yeah, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: I'm still waiting on results from-- I did a gut microbiome test recently and I still have not received those.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the PREDICT study also had that. So, they did my gut.

Melanie Avalon: What company?

Gin Stephens: I mean, it's them, PREDICT. PREDICT does it. You send it to them. There's like a guy, his name's on the label that you send it to. And it's really funny, the moderator group, there were three of us going through it at the same time and we were joking about that poor guy that got all of our samples. Yeah, his name was on the address labels, we're like, I can't remember Phil, pretend like his name's Phil. That's not it. But it's like, “Hello Phil, sending you our samples.” But we all send them to the same guy. They all had the same guy on the label.

Melanie Avalon: I always feel we're dropping off those samples in the mail because I've sent so many of them.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, and I was standing in the post office, mailing them and I had my CGM on. And this guy behind me was-- I might have told the story already. He's like, “What's on your arm?” I'm like, “Hello. Ask me anything.” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: My friend told me I looked like an android.

Gin Stephens: I told you, Computer Generated Melanie.

Melanie Avalon: I know.

Gin Stephens: Anyway, good times. It's fascinating to have all of this science as we're trying to understand it and optimize it and figure this out. But, again, everything I've found out, really has validated what I already knew. Which is why I'm saying if you feel really strongly about something, and the way you feel and the way you think something works for you, you're probably right. I had zero surprises.

Melanie Avalon: Because even with mine it pretty much showed things I was--

Gin Stephens: You were thinking it wasn't working for you and you're like, “Yep, there it is. Wow, it's worse than I thought.”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, hypoglycemia after meals, which I still get even with the keto. So, I don't know what to do with that. My body just doesn't like food.

Gin Stephens: I did not. I don't have that. I really think a lot of it is our gut microbiome.

Melanie Avalon: I think so.

Gin Stephens: Heal your gut. Fix it all. So, I'm so terrified, I'm going to do something that'll mess up the good thing I got going on. I never want to do that.

Melanie Avalon: Well, one of the most fascinating things that I've read recently, I think I told you, I'm going to interview Joel Greene. He's the one who kept talking about that has the crazy things that are just blowing my mind, like things I've never heard before about all this?

Gin Stephens: Well, that must be crazy if it's blowing your mind, and you've never heard them.

Melanie Avalon: It is. It's things I've never heard.

Gin Stephens: Like what?

Melanie Avalon: He's the one about seeing how fat loss creates injury to the fat cells and changes the extracellular matrix. So, it's literally injuring your fat cell and the way that the injury is usually repaired is by regaining the weight. That's the reason our bodies try to regain weight. And then, things like how long-term ketogenic diets probably might promote cancer, because of the 4-HNE something, something. There's all this stuff that's just blowing my mind. And one of the things he talks about, though, is bacteria guilds. And he was saying how there are a lot of species of bacteria, but there are guilds that they're in. And so, there's a certain type of bacteria that--

Gin Stephens: Like a bacteria club?

Melanie Avalon: Basically, yeah. It's like a bacteria club, but there are different types of bacteria within the clubs, but there are three main clubs. There's like the carb club, the fat club, and the protein club. And it all relates to-- this is going way in the weeds, nitrogen generation, internal or external. And so, basically a high-protein diet versus a high-fat diet versus a high-carb diet, and how that determines the bacteria guild you have and how that determines so many things, and it's mind blowing. So, listeners, I'm going to I interview him, get excited.

Gin Stephens: So fascinating. We're learning so much. That's the thing, remain curious, because we're learning a lot. And sometimes the new things make us realize the old things were really kind of dumb to even believe. The people who are still like, “It's just calories, in calories out.” I'm like, “Okay, bless your heart.”

Melanie Avalon: He has so much on that about how the gut microbiome affects calories. It's crazy.

Gin Stephens: But people will still claim that's true. It's all just calories in, calories out, and I'm like, “All right, you must not have ever read anything.”

Melanie Avalon: It is literally technically calories in, calories out, but there's so many factors affecting that, it's not the calories you put in your mouth.

Gin Stephens: Right. And the calories out is the part you can't control. That's the big variable. People will say, “My RMR or whatever, resting metabolic rate, is this.” I'm like, “Okay, I don't think so.”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, and even calories in, you can't control because what he talks about the gut bacteria, a certain food might lead to more energy creation from your gut bacteria.

Gin Stephens: So, in the grand scheme of, is it calories in, calories out, I guess, technically. But it's not what you think it is. It's not what it says on the back of the package or on this Google search that tells you what your metabolism should be. And I also am pretty sure your metabolic rate looks a lot like that CGM blood glucose curve, depending on what you're doing right at that minute. It's not static.

Melanie Avalon: I think it was his book. He talks about that. He was saying the metabolism-- I don't know if it was him. Something I was reading recently, it was talking about metabolism and saying that it's not--

Gin Stephens: One number.

Melanie Avalon: There's not a rate. It's not a thing. It's just not. Like you're burning certain calories or you're not.

Gin Stephens: Every time someone says, “All you have to do is calculate your metabolic rate and then eat 500 calories fewer per day.” I'm like, “Okay, yeah, that sounds so good. But that's not really how our bodies work.” Anyway.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Stay tuned for all these conversations.

Gin Stephens: Are we ready to get to our questions?

Melanie Avalon: I think so.

Gin Stephens: All right, we've got one from Samantha. And she says, “Hey, there, Melanie and Gin. I'm three weeks into IF down about five-ish pounds, but mostly just feeling great. I'm loving your podcast. I've downloaded yours and Gin's second books and trying to catch up ASAP. I'm listening to your Weird IF Problems episode, so great.” That was a long time ago, Melanie. Was that number 100? No, that was Ask Me Anything.

Melanie Avalon: That was a while ago, we should do something fun like that again.

Gin Stephens: That would be fun. All right. “People around me think I'm crazy while I giggle to myself. Hey, there's another weird problem. I want to order wearable weights, but I don't see them on the 'stuff we like' page, can you steer me in the right direction, please? I'm curious what an appropriate weight is. I want to get bonus exercise from walking my dog, but don't want to end up with leg cramps. I was thinking four pounds. Where did you start and what do you were? I am 37 on my way from 160 to 140 or lower. Thanks, Sam.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Sam, thank you for your question. Yes. So, that's one of the strange things I do what I wear, like wrist weights all the time. All the time at the grocery store, while cleaning. Four pounds, if you mean four pounds total, that might be a good place to start. But normally, I just wear--there's like wearable risk weights you can get that are usually like a pound or two pounds, and that's what I would get. And they have them on Amazon, we can add it to the Stuff We Like. Or they usually have them at Marshall's, Ross, TJ Maxx, that's where I always get them. So, go there. And I think I mentioned this before, but another way that literally started toning my arms a lot was if you make all of your bowls like cast iron.

Gin Stephens: [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I'm not even kidding. Especially because then you have to wash it-- like me scraping it out, especially if I cook eggs in it, the next morning takes me 10 minutes, and I think it's a really good toning workout for my arms.

Gin Stephens: I'm doing lots of toning then because my dishwasher is broken.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, see?

Gin Stephens: And I was so glad, Melanie, that my dishwasher broke and it's all very bittersweet because I hate this dishwasher that this house came with.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, so you're going to get a new one?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it was like a KitchenAid from, I don't know, over 10 years ago. So, it was a nice one when they bought it. Really, really nice, but dishwashers really have come a long way. It might even be 20 years old. I don't know when they remodeled that kitchen, but it was old. But you couldn't adjust the top higher or lower, the top rack. It was fixed. So, nothing fit, like wine glasses don't fit anywhere. Crazy.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know you could normally adjust the rack. I don't know if you can. I'm in an apartment, though. I don't know if that matters.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, but here's something so interesting. I went to go order a new one. And I had to wait like a month before they could deliver it and install it.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really?

Gin Stephens: Yes. I'm like I feel like this should be an emergency. And people with a dishwasher should go to the top of the list, but they just looked at me. I didn't really say that, but.

Melanie Avalon: You ordered it from the company?

Gin Stephens: We got it from Best Buy.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, okay. Do they install it? How does that work? I've never ordered a dishwasher.

Gin Stephens: We're paying $150 to have it delivered and installed. They would deliver it for free if we could install it. But I'm like, “No, we cannot install it.” That's a no. I can install a blender. We're good at many things, but not installing dishwashers. Now, somebody will probably write in and say how easy it is. It probably is, we could probably learn how.

Melanie Avalon: We're definitely going to get feedback about this.

Gin Stephens: I would like to not have to know how. I feel like that would lead to a lot of stress on our marriage, trying to together install a dishwasher. They said they're going to bring it, but they can't bring it till the end of October. So, I am washing all the dishes. I'm also getting very creative and doing more cooking in the oven. Last night, I did all of it on a sheet pan with tin foil or aluminum foil.

Melanie Avalon: Nice.

Gin Stephens: That was easy to clean. I still had to wash the plates.

Melanie Avalon: I always use a convection oven. So easy.

Gin Stephens: Our wall oven is a convection oven.

Melanie Avalon: And Instant Pot.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I hadn't gotten on the Instant Pot bandwagon yet.

Melanie Avalon: It's fun. I think I'm going to make cottage cheese in it. I'm so excited.

Gin Stephens: I do love cottage cheese. You're going to make cottage cheese?

Melanie Avalon: I am.

Gin Stephens: And you're going to eat dairy?

Melanie Avalon: I've been eating some cottage cheese.

Gin Stephens: I didn't know that.

Melanie Avalon: But I rinse it. Did we talk about this?

Gin Stephens: No. You should strain it and send me the-- I would probably drink cottage cheese juice or whatever that is, the liquid.

Melanie Avalon: You take the rest. Well, that's why I realized I could start making my own and then I won't have to rinse it.

Gin Stephens: Why do you rinse it?

Melanie Avalon: Because they add back in the cream and I wanted to make it fat free.

Gin Stephens: Oh.

Melanie Avalon: So, if I just make it from skimmed milk-- when they make cottage cheese, I realized all the ones you buy at the store, they make the cottage cheese but then they add back in cream.

Gin Stephens: Oh, I didn't know that.

Melanie Avalon: And I don't want that cream, so you can rinse off that cream. Or you can make some on the Instant Pot.

Gin Stephens: Well, now I'm craving cottage cheese.

Melanie Avalon: Fun fact. Did you know that your house contains a Faraday cage?

Gin Stephens: No. Is it in your microwave?

Melanie Avalon: Yes.

Gin Stephens: Okay. Yeah, I did know that.

Melanie Avalon: So, friends, listeners, if you ever want to completely stop all communication with your phone, like airplane mode to the extreme, put it in the microwave.

Gin Stephens: And don't turn it on.

Melanie Avalon: And don’t turn it on. Gosh.

Gin Stephens: No, really. I have personal experience about that.

Melanie Avalon: You turned on the microwave?

Gin Stephens: Oh, no, I didn't, no. One of my children did.

Melanie Avalon: Put their phone in the microwave?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, they thought it would be a hilarious video.

Melanie Avalon: What happened?

Gin Stephens: It made the phone completely stop working. They did not confess it to me till years later. Okay, so first of all, I need to disclaimer this story, because I actually feel like I should contact the Apple Store and pay them back. But this was when one of my children was in middle school, so it was so long ago, okay, because they're not grownups and I didn't know the truth for years and now I feel like the statute of limitations. But he was like, “My phone stopped working. It won't work at all.” And I'm like, “Well, that's not good.” He's like, “It won't turn on, nothing will happen.” So, we went to the Apple Store. You know they test to make sure it didn't drop in water? Well, it didn't drop in water.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, how old was your son?

Gin Stephens: I mean maybe sixth grade> It was a long time ago, a long time ago. And they're like, “We don't know what happened. Here's the new phone.” And like, “Okay, thank you. Y'all are awesome.” And then, years later, he's like, "Yeah, I put it in the microwave." And I'm like, “What? We stole aside from the Apple Store,” because I would never mislead them on purpose. I'd be like, “He put it in the microwave.” I always tell the truth.

Melanie Avalon: It didn't explode?

Gin Stephens: Nope. Just stopped working. It bricked it. Apple Store, I'm so sorry. I apologize. I feel like I should go there and pay them back for this old iPhone from a long time ago. Anyway. Never do that.

Melanie Avalon: Fun Facts with Melanie and Gin. Basically, a Faraday cage blocks like all everything, electricity wise.

Gin Stephens: Now, I feel like I shouldn't tell that story because I'm like, embarrassed because I'm such an honest person.

Melanie Avalon: You didn't know.

Gin Stephens: I didn't know. And it was years later that he told me.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like I probably done something like that. Nothing's coming to mind right now.

Gin Stephens: I should march him in there right now and say, “This young man right here owes you for an iPhone.” I won't say which child it was that did it. So, I'll protect his anonymity.

Melanie Avalon: I bet I know which one.

Gin Stephens: You probably do. I don't know. You could be wrong.

Melanie Avalon: Really? Actually, wait, now I'm thinking. Now, I might not know.

Gin Stephens: One of them would have known better. Let me just put it that way.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, yeah. Then, I know which one. All right. So, our next question comes from Josephine. The subject is "Frustrating Plateau. Help, Plus Feels." And Josephine says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. I am now on month four of IF with a protocol of 18:6 or 19:5 depending on the day. I lost weight in month two, and then have completely stalled. The weird thing is, I haven't changed a thing. If anything, my stomach has shrunk to where I can't eat the quantities I ate before in my eating window. Additionally, I added a few weeks of extra cardio towards the end of my fasting window. But still, my body looks exactly the same. The same fat pockets on my upper thighs and belly remain. I'm sleeping really well, so I know it's not cortisol. I am no more stressed than I have ever been. I am not eating fattier or more carb-heavy foods, nor more caloric foods. I am so perplexed. I really, really, really do not want to do ADF. It just sounds miserable to go an entire day without food. Is that really the only way to break through this plateau? Do you and Melanie have any other suggestions for me to tweak my protocol? I just want to lose those last five to seven stubborn fat pockets. It feels like my body wants to hold on to them for dear life.” Then, she has another question, but we can go ahead and answer that.

Gin Stephens: This is one of those things, it's hard to know exactly. But five to seven pounds is what Josephine wants to lose. The last five to seven pounds. Also, we have got genetically different bodies. I've got a certain kind of thighs, so does my mother, we are built a certain way. I would not lose certain parts of my body no matter how hard I try, because it's how my body is built. I've just got those kind of hips, those kind of thighs. It's, I guess, the stubborn fat, but it's genetic. So, I wonder if Josephine is fighting against just genetic fat, that's just how she's built, that's her size. She might be at her perfect weight, that her body thinks is her perfect weight. See, that's the trick right there. You may think your perfect weight is different than your body thinks your perfect weight is and it's really, really hard to change your genetic perfect weight.

When we're dealing with five to seven pounds, that's just something to keep in mind. We are all built differently. I am never going to be-- like, I remember one time back in the 90s or something, I was like, “I just want to be lanky.” And my husband said, “You're not going to be lanky. That's not how you're built.” And I got super offended, then I'm like, “Oh yeah, you're right.” I'm never going to be lanky, that's not my body tight. So, if it feels like your body wants to hold on to that for dear life, that might be really what's happening.

Now, are there ways to lose more weight? Assuming that this is not where your body wants to be, and you can lose five to seven more pounds of fat. It doesn't have to be ADF, you don't have to go an entire day without food, even if you do ADF. You could do the down day version with the 500-calorie meal if that works for you. Or you could say, “Nope, I'm not going to do ADF at all.” I have a hybrid approach. I have several different approaches listed in Fast. Feast. Repeat. Check out the IF Toolbox chapter for that.

But you could also tweak your food choices. You said you're not eating fattier or more carb-heavy foods or more caloric foods. You're eating foods that are helping you maintain right where you are. So, in order to lose more, you're going to need to change something. Change what you're eating, tweak it in some way or another, the Feast section of Fast. Feast. Repeat. can help you figure that out, some things that you might want to tweak. Melanie is finding that for her, really a lower carb, higher fat approach is working really well for her body right now. She's also experimented with the lower fat approach. So, try some different things. Those last five to seven pounds can be the most stubborn for all of us.

And really, this may be also the time to throw the scale away and focus on body changes. Photos, huge. I mentioned to Melanie that I've been using my Shapa scale, the numberless scale, and I've been on teal, after giving up wine and not drinking, except on a few special occasions. I've been on teal, which indicates very slow and steady weight loss. But I have a pair of honesty pants. I took my photos in them in May and then I just took photos wearing the same pants the other day. And I've completely lost some love handles that had popped up at some point. The photos showed such a difference. I didn't even realize I had those love hands, honestly. But I've been going through menopause, I'd been drinking a lot more wine. My body had changed and now it's changing back. I haven't gotten on the scale, but other than my numberless the scale, I haven't seen a number. So, I really am curious what the weight fluctuation was for me, but the only thing I've changed is taking out wine. And boy, my body has changed from those photos.

Melanie Avalon: I forgot. Does the Shapa scale ever show you a weight ever?

Gin Stephens: Oh, I could touch a certain place and it would show it to me. I could touch it. Every now and then I look at that and I'm like tempted.

Melanie Avalon: Can you make it so that it doesn't ever show you as well? Can you make it colors from the start? Or does it give you a weight at the beginning?

Gin Stephens: Oh, I've never seen a weight. I haven't seen a weight the whole time. Yes. Now, if you set it to sync to Apple Health or something, if you set it to sync, you're going to see your weight. So, don't set it to sync with other apps if you don't want to see your weight. I just wanted to see the color. Yesterday, I had a longer window and back in the days that I was weighing and seeing a number-- I mean, I haven't seen a number since 2017. Literally, I have not seen a weight number since 2017.

Melanie Avalon: What do you do at the doctor?

Gin Stephens: I don't look at a number. I don't want to see a number. I don't want you to tell me a number. I refuse to know a number.

Melanie Avalon: I don't look either. But sometimes they tell me it.

Gin Stephens: Well, they're not going to tell me if I tell them not to, and I mean it. Anyway, I don't want to see a number. Yesterday, I had a longer eating window, and so this morning, if I were looking at numbers, even though I know that fluctuation is okay, this morning, I was like, “Hmm, I wonder if my weight's higher today.” But I didn't care because I got on the scale and there was my color. It just shows you your overall trend. So, anyone who's interested--

Melanie Avalon: What's the maintenance color?

Gin Stephens: Green is the maintenance color.

Melanie Avalon: What's the gaining color?

Gin Stephens: A lighter gray, and then a darker gray. And I want to know if I'm ever gaining weight because apparently, I did gain a little weight over-- maybe it was the pandemic, I don't know, I was drinking more. We were all stressed out. A lot of people gained weight early in the pandemic, even intermittent fasters who'd been maintaining for years. So, how much of it was menopause? How much was pandemic? How much was the extra wine? Are they really all related? Probably. But I think if I'd had it, I probably would have seen gray and it would have helped me realize, okay, I am gaining weight because even in your clothes-- I mean, I was still wearing the same clothes. I didn't have to go up a clothing size. I was still at a button everything, at no time did I not fit in my clothes. But the way I looked at them according to the photo was different. If I hadn't had the photos, I wouldn't even realize. Take those photos.

If you're interested in the Shapa scale, the website is myshapa.com, I think is the website. And the promo code is IFSTORIES. You'll get a special deal, but, man, I love it. I think it's really life changing and even people-- if you get on it and you see gray, people like, “Yeah, well, that upsets me.” But it's information. If your pants are too tight, that's upsetting as well. But having the information while you can take action is the point of it.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly.

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about one of the sponsors for today's show, and that's Audible. Audible is the leading provider of spoken-word entertainment and audiobooks ranging from bestsellers to celebrity memoirs, news, business, and self-development. Every month, members get one credit to pick any title two audible originals from a monthly selection, access to daily news digests and guided meditation programs. Beyond Audible’s normal entertainment and audiobook options, I want to tell you about something special they're offering right now. And that's stories.audible.com.

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And now here's a special offer just for our listeners. Visit audible.com/ifpodcast or text 'IF Podcast' to 500-500. Try Audible for free and get one free audiobook in your first month. Of course, Melanie and I recommend that you choose What When Wine or Fast. Feast. Repeat., or even Delay, Don't Deny. Or you can choose from the thousands of titles available on Audible. That's audible.com/ifpodcast. And now back to the show.

All right, so what would you like to say to Josephine about what I said?

Melanie Avalon: I really like everything you said, just basically going to emphasize and resay some of the things you said that, a lot of our bodies will be at a point like Gin said, where they are happy with where they're at and if it is a matter of those last 5 or 10 pounds, I know she said 5 or 7-- and I'm learning a lot about this reading that Joel Greene book, there can be fat that is exactly like you said, stubborn. And if you want it gone because of your goals and aesthetically and for whatever reason, because that's everybody's own prerogative, I don't really have any comments. I don't think we should find worth in our body weight and I don't think we should judge ourselves by that. But if you want-- if that's like an important goal to you, I don't have any problem with that either.

Gin Stephens: Unless it makes you miserable. I have a problem with that because she talks about fat pockets on her thighs and belly. I've got a fat pocket on my belly. And so, I choose a bathing suit that goes up a little higher. And there are certain styles of bathing suits I'm not going to wear. I wear a more high-waisted bathing suit and tuck that stuff in it and feel great on the beach. I'm not trying to have a body that my body is not going to want to maintain. I could do it. I could lose, but I don't want to live that way. And it would be really hard to maintain. So, you want to pick a weight where you can feel beautiful, or handsome, but also still enjoy your life. That's what I think.

Melanie Avalon: 100%, I agree. I think out of all of it, and Gin said this, and she said this, but she said she's not eating more carbs or more fat or more calories, but-- I talk about this all the time. But really paying attention to the macros is a thing, so potentially trying low carb, high fat or high fat, low carb and making sure it actually really does fit those macros. So, for high carb, low fat, I would suggest, and this sounds a little bit crazy, but 10% or less calories from fat is usually what is “prescribed” for that. I did an interview with Cyrus and Robbie of Mastering Diabetes, I'll put a link in the show notes to that. Or if you're doing low carb, high fat, making sure it actually is low carb, high fat.

That's usually-- I mean, if you want to definitely be spot on, they say like 20 grams are lots of carbs. Sometimes, it's a little bit more. But really zoning in and trying one of those approaches can do wonders. The biggest thing for me that I'm probably going to say every single time, maybe for the rest of my life is looking at seed oils, polyunsaturated fats, PUFAs, omega-6s in particular. I did recently have Cate Shanahan on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, that was last week, I think. The reception to that episode was insane. Definitely listen to it, there's something to consider there about getting PUFAs out of your diet, because if you want to turn your fat cells into-- this is something that Joel Greene talks about a lot. Your fat cells are not just fat cells, this was really mind blowing for me. They're not just fat cells. They are a lot of things. They can store fat, but they also contain immune cells, they also contain stem cells that can either become immune cells or fat cells. They're not just there to store fat, they're there to store toxins to protect us. That's why cleaning up your endocrine exposure through your skincare and makeup, things like that, Beautycounter is an example. It can be really, really important. When the fat cell no longer is functioning as a fat cell, if it's been damaged by polyunsaturated fats, or by weight loss, or whatever it is, it can be really hard to lose it. It can literally become stubborn fat. And if you want to get it gone, it can be really, really hard when the signals in that fat cell are working against you, because all of the signals in that fat cell are to keep it at its present state. And so, this is also something we're like, topically addressing-- Especially if you combined with fasting or one of the diets like a high carb, low fat or low carb, high fat, combined with topical treatment, I think can be really helpful.

So, I don't know, because I haven't done it, but I talked about this before. But Joel Greene in his book talks about topical treatments that involve like menthol on the stubborn fat pockets. Caffeine is also a topical treatment you can use. I know there are lot of creams out there, but I get really nervous about the creams because they usually have a lot of nasty compounds in them that you don't want in your body. I haven't seen a lot of research on this. But even putting coffee on the areas, especially while you're fasting. Red light therapy, we talk about Joovv a lot. There are different theories behind how that works, but the thought is that the wavelengths actually break down that fat cell membrane and help the fatty acids leak out into the bloodstream. And this feels a whole tangent rabbit hole but basically, if it is stubborn fat where that fat cell has decided it's not releasing its fat for whatever reason, sometimes you've got to help give it a signal to do so, that's why I think things like topical treatment, red light therapy, combined with dietary changes might work. The fitness models, and people who do this for living, they're doing it for a living. It's their job to fight this. Compared to the everyday person where it's not always so easy.

Gin Stephens: That's the whole dilemma because you said earlier, if that's your goal and you really want to work for that, of course, it's your right to do it. And we're not judging anybody who wants to, if it's your job or if you're a model, but it just makes me feel sad. And even a lot of the people that we see, the models, that's not really how they look because the photos have been airbrushed, they've been doctored. They don't really look like that. So, we're trying to look like somebody that's not even how they look. And the people that are like the competition figure people, they don't look like that every day.

Melanie Avalon: And then after it's like, usually-- because we've had Wade Lightheart on, he talks about that a lot and Joel Greene talks about the awful-- like weight cycling, like what that does to your body.

Gin Stephens: It just makes me sad to think that we're trying to get to these ideals that are not real. Again, some of the people like the Victoria's Secret models, they have a different genetic look than I do. There is not one single thing I could do to look like the Victoria's Secret Angels, like nothing, it wouldn't happen. I couldn't.

Melanie Avalon: Like, you can't increase your height.

Gin Stephens: I can't or my leg length or get rid of my fat pockets. That's just the way I am. Anyway, so many things we could talk about forever and ever. All right, you want to get the rest of that question?

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Josephine has one more question. She says, “Also, one last unrelated question. I bought Feals CBD oil, but I'm scared to take it during my fasting window since it has calories. Did I hear you wrong, Gin, when you said you don't mind taking it during your fasting window? Could you please explain why? Don't any calorie spike insulin? Thanks.” And then, she says, “I hope you both remain healthy and well during this crazy time.”

Gin Stephens: First of all, let's get that one sentence, “calories spiking insulin.” Really, it's more complicated than the idea of calories. Some calories spike insulin more than other calories. Some would barely spike it like an oil, for example. But that has another issue, it's not all about insulin. We do want to avoid calories. We do want to avoid spiking insulin. Flavors and sweeteners are more likely to spike insulin higher than like just a little MCT oil, for example. Neither would I recommend during the fast if you're hoping to fast clean, but now let's talk about the complexity that is medication or supplements that you need. So, if you have an issue that Feals CBD oil is going to help you with, anxiety, really terrible anxiety problems, pain. I'm trying to think of all the things that CBD oil can help with. Depression. If you had to choose between keeping your fast completely clean and dealing with a medical issue that is debilitating, then please take the CBD oil. It's not going to affect you so badly that you're not going to recover from it.

Now, if you're just taking it just to see, keep it in your eating window if you can, or if you're taking it for sleep purposes, that sort of thing. But if I needed Feals and the only time that I could take it was during the fast because it was going to help me and I needed it therapeutically during the fast, I would not hesitate to take it. That being said, it absolutely does break my fast because I've experimented with it during the fast and it made me hungry in a different kind of way. I had to open my window and I had to eat. So, I can't take it during the fast. I have to take it during my eating window or close to bedtime. You'll just have to experiment and see. But if it's something you need and you need to take it in the fast and it doesn't make you want to gnaw your arm off, like it made me so hungry, then it's fine.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think that's great. For listeners, I'm a huge fan of CBD, because basically it works on your brain's endocannabinoid receptors and it modulates them. It's not addictive, like a drug, it's not making you need the CBD oil. It's just changing that whole system to potentially work for the better and like Gin mentioned all the things that can help with. I'm always shocked by its potency because especially I've had periods of like more anxiety, and I would take a daily and then not take it as much. But I just know when I got broken into that one time. That's when it really sold me because I was like crying and bawling and I was so stressed, and I couldn't even handle it and I took like a big dose of it. And I was literally like laughing 15 minutes later. So, it can be really incredible. But I do want to give a caveat that I wouldn't just take any CBD because now that it's popular, it's everywhere and there's no quality control. So, I really wanted to vet out a brand that would meet all my criteria, which is it's full spectrum, it's organic-- it's made with organic carrier, and it's tested. Feals does all of that. And they also shipped straight to your door, which is pretty incredible.

When I take it, it doesn't make me hungry, and it doesn't have that effect at all. Basically, what Gin just said, you've got to just experiment for you and see how it affects anything. If there was one type of oil that I think would be least likely to “break a fast,” it would be MCT oil. I'm not saying bulletproof coffee, like tablespoons of MCT oil. I'm saying like, when you take Feals, it's like just a few drops. So, I think the potential there is a lot less compared to a lot of other things. But, yes, I basically echo everything that Gin said. But honestly, Feals really does have me feeling my best every day when I take it. And I think that it can help you guys too. And you can become a member today, you just go to feals.com/ifpodcast. And if you do that, you will actually get 50% off your first order with free shipping, which I say this every time, but I think that's one of our best offers out of all the brands we work with. So, I'm so grateful for that. That's F-E-A-L-S dotcom slash IF podcast, o become a member and get 50% automatically taken off your first order with free shipping, feals.com/ifpodcast.

Okay. Well, don't think we have time for anything else, but this has been absolutely wonderful. Few final resources for listeners before we go. Again, the show notes will be at ifpodcast.com/episode186. You can join our Facebook groups. Okay, wait, Gin. So, what's your Facebook group called again?

Gin Stephens: It's called Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri. G-I-N is Gin. Sheri, S-H-E-R-I. Life Lessons with Gin and Sheri, answer the three questions. We're having so much fun reading the answers to the questions. People are explaining why they're there. Everyone's answers are so fitting in with our vision for this community.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm excited to see what they are and to answer.

Gin Stephens: Almost everybody in the group came out of our other Facebook groups at this point because we don't have the podcast yet, no one's listening to it because doesn't exist yet. But eventually people will find it and get to the Facebook group, not having-- they won't be intermittent fasters. Right now, almost everybody is an intermittent faster. But just seeing how our community is amazing already. It's just amazing. Everyone is just very positive, and people are just incredible. The things that we deal with in our daily lives, we're so much more than just our fasting protocol. It's nice to talk about something else is what I'm saying. It's so nice. We're talking about everything. You know how Seinfeld was the show about nothing?

Melanie Avalon: I didn't know that.

Gin Stephens: That's what they always said, the show about nothing. Well, we are the Facebook group about everything.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I love it.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really happy and excited for you because that sounds like the vibe I've been feeling in my Facebook group. We talk about everything.

Gin Stephens: We're not about health only. I mean we will talk about that. Our first podcast, we're going to talk about sleep, our first episode, but we're going to talk about things like that. But also, some more funny things. One of the topic ideas for a podcast is famous sayings, the origin of sayings, like we say them all the time, but where do they come from? What's the origin of that? Doesn’t that sound interesting? We can really talk about whatever we want.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to send you two mind-blowing articles I've read recently that are like this, that blew my mind.

Gin Stephens: Awesome. But then, we're also going to share the funniest wrong ones. Like what you've heard, perhaps your-- my husband, Chad has a say. I'll share this on the podcast, not today, but something he was saying that he thought was the same, but I'm like, “What did you just say?” But we all have had things like that, where we thought it was one thing, but it was not. So, we'll share some of those really funny misunderstood or missaid sayings.

Melanie Avalon: I've got to send you.

Gin Stephens: Please do.

Melanie Avalon: I think it was mind-blowing facts about some words and phrases that would blow your mind. Oh, my goodness, it blew my mind!

Gin Stephens: We're going to be able to talk about anything we want. And it's going to be interesting and sometimes it'll be serious, like, how are we going to navigate the holidays with COVID? That's a serious topic, or a fun topic. It's just really going to be anything that people want to hear. We're going to have different segments where listeners are going to share things. I'm so excited.

Melanie Avalon: It's so exciting.

Gin Stephens: I will never stop intermittent fasting and the two podcasts that I already have. I'll never stop those because that's important to me. But it's nice to have something else to talk about.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. So, listeners, definitely join that group and you can also join my group as well, which is IF Biohackers Intermittent Fasting, plus real foods, plus life. It is more biohacking related, but you can also talk about anything you like there. So, you can follow us on Instagram. We are @ifpodcast. You can follow me, I'm @melanieavalon where you can see a picture of my CGM where I look like an android. And you can follow Gin, she's @ginstephens. I think that's everything.

Gin Stephens: Yep. I enjoyed it.

Melanie Avalon: Anything from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: I think I said it all.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. All right. I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right. Bye-bye.

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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! 

 

 

Nov 01

Episode 185: TREAT Clinical Discussion, Muscle Loss, Headline Vs Study, Circadian Rhythm, Early Window Vs Late Window, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

Welcome to Episode 185 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:

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!

GREEN CHEF: Get easy, affordable meals made with organic ingredients for a variety of lifestyles - including Vegetarian, Paleo, Keto, Vegan, and Vegetarian - shipped straight to your home! Go to GreenChef.com/ifpodcast90 and use code ifpodcast90 to get $90 off including free shipping!

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

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BLUBLOX: Go To BluBlox.com And Use The Code ifpodcast For 15% Off!

3:45 - 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!

14:30 - Listener Q&A: Megan - TREAT Clinical Trial

Effects of Time-Restricted Eating on Weight Loss and Other Metabolic Parameters in Women and Men With Overweight and Obesity

The Melanie Avalon Podcast Episode #37 - James Clement

Gin's Favorite Things

29:10 - GREEN CHEF: Organic Meal Delivery Service With Paleo, Vegan, And Keto Options: Go to GreenChef.com/ifpodcast90 And Use Code ifpodcast90 To Get $90 Off And Free Shipping!

42:30 - JOOVV:  Go To Joovv.com/ifpodcast And Use The Code IFPODCAST For An Exclusive Discount!

45:30 - Listener Q&A: Jeff - Early Is Better?

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!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 185 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting? Then this show is for you.

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

Friends, I have a story for you. I recently got septoplasty to fix my deviated septum so that I could breathe better. And in the recovery period, you're not supposed to wear glasses. Oh, my goodness. I cannot tell you how much I realized how much I adore and need and love BLUblox blue light blocking glasses. I've been wearing them every single night of my life until I got that surgery. Guys, you need this in your life.

In today's world, we're way overexposed to blue light. While blue light is energizing, we're not supposed to be seeing it 24/7. It can raise cortisol, stress levels, create tension and headaches, disrupt your sleep, and so much more. Of course, there are a lot of “blue light blocking glasses” on the market these days. Andy Mant, the founder of BLUblox, he personally realized how incredible blue light blocking glasses were for him personally. So, then he did something crazy and actually tested all the brands on the market to see if they actually were blocking blue light like they said they were. They weren't really. That's why he took things into his own hands to create glasses that would block the blue light you need to be blocking to truly have the healthiest relationship possible with light.

That's also why he made BLUblox light blocking glasses in a lot of different versions. They have clear computer glasses you can wear all day while looking at the computer. They have their SummerGlo lens that blocked the draining form of blue light while still allowing in some of the energizing wavelengths. They're also tinted with a special yellow color, scientifically shown to boost mood. And, of course, they have their Sleep+ lens, you can put those on a bed and it's just like, bam, tired. At least that's the way it works for me because actually blue light can block melatonin production, which helps us naturally fall asleep.

Also, get their Sleep Remedy Mask. Oh, my goodness, I use it every single night. It gives you complete blackout while still putting no pressure on your eyes. Like you wear it, and you can open your eyes completely, and it's completely black. It's mind-blowing. In case you're wondering, I'm still not supposed to be wearing glasses, but I ordered this weird contraption head thing to hold the glasses over my eyes because I just really need the blue light blocking glasses in my life. These glasses also come in a huge array of styles, so you don't have to feel like a weirdo biohacker like me. You can really get any style or frame to fit your personal style.

You can shop with us at blublox.com, that's B-L-U-B-L-O-X dotcom and use the code, IFPODCAST, to get 15% off. Something else amazing, for every pair of glasses you buy, BLUblox donates a pair of glasses to someone in need. The glasses can also come in prescription made to order. Again, that's blublox.com with the coupon code, IFPODCAST, for 15% off.

And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that what you put on your skin gets direct access to your bloodstream and in your body can do a lot of detrimental things? So, while you may be fasting clean, you may at the same time be infusing your body with endocrine disrupters, which can mess with your hormones, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight and even carcinogens.

In Europe, they've banned thousands of these compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup, and the US has banned less than 10. In fact, most conventional lipstick, for example, is high in lead and the half-life of lead in the body can be up to 30 years. That means every time you put on some lipstick, you might be putting some lead into your bones, which might not leave for three decades. This is a big deal. Thankfully, there's an easy all-encompassing answer.

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

Hi everybody, and welcome. This is episode number 185 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, and I have a very exciting announcement.

Melanie Avalon: What is that?

Gin Stephens: For people who can't get enough listening to me talk to you, I'm starting a third podcast. Coming soon. I'll share more details later.

Melanie Avalon: What?

Gin Stephens: Yep. I know you already knew I was working on that, but a third podcast with a friend of mine. For people who listen to Intermittent Fasting Stories, Sheri Bullock, she was episode number nine. And she and I just really hit it off and become friends. We're friends. She and I just went to the beach last week. A few weeks ago, she called me and she's like, “Alright, I'm going to do it. I'm going to start a podcast.” She was asking me for tips about starting a podcast. She said what her vision was, and we were talking about it. It's not going to be an intermittent fasting podcast. It's not going to be about intermittent fasting at all.

Melanie Avalon: How dare you!

Gin Stephens: I know. I feel like now intermittent fasting is just a small part of me. I've got so many other parts of me. But in talking about giving her tips, she was like, “And I'd like to bring people on. What about a cohost? I've been thinking about-- I don't know who it would be.” Then all of a sudden, my brain went, “Ding, ding, ding.” And I said, “Huh. What about me?” She got really excited because she was not asking me to cohost and I wasn't trying to horn in on her podcast idea. But she got really excited, I got really excited. And we just went to the beach for a few days. We hammered it all out. We started a Facebook group to get everybody excited about it. A lot of it's going to be crowdsourced as far as the topics we cover. Anyway, I'm really, really excited.

Melanie Avalon: Well, this is very exciting. You're going to be a three-show woman.

Gin Stephens: Well, I know. It's crazy. I guess my teachers from elementary school, middle, and high school who said Gin talks too much, who's laughing now? But 1st of December, I'll share more information as it goes. But we're giving ourselves a couple months to really hammer out all the details. But it's really, really exciting. We're going to have a community structured around it. And we opened it up, we posted in the Facebook groups about it. And within 24 hours, we had 3,000 members in our community already. And they're all so excited because, again, we're all intermittent fasters. And a lot of people in the intermittent fasting community when you've been doing it, it just becomes part of you. So, you're like, “Alright, now I'm ready to talk about something else.”

Melanie Avalon: Wait, so this community that you created, does it give away what the show is about? Or does it just say--?

Gin Stephens: Maybe. I'll share more later. I'm not quite ready yet. We're still very early. But I know some of the listeners are probably already in our podcast community, but I think it's going to be fabulous. And as we were approving members and looking at how to answer the questions that we asked, like why do you want to be in this community, kind of a thing, what do you want to learn about, they are so aligned with our vision. It's going to be great.

Melanie Avalon: Exciting. 2021.

Gin Stephens: I know, well, it's starting in 2020. But, yes, 2021 is when it's really going to get going. So, I'm just really excited.

Melanie Avalon: It's very exciting.

Gin Stephens: And I'm never going to stop the intermittent fasting communities for anybody who may be worried. I'm not going anywhere, but it's just nice to branch out a little bit. That's probably how you feel on the biohacking podcast, you get to talk about other interesting topics.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I feel that show really satisfies all of my desires to reach out, like you just said, different topics so I'm not just in the intermittent fasting world.

Gin Stephens: And probably this won't surprise anyone, but ours is not going to be biohacking. It's going to be more life hacks, things you want to know about. For example, when you want to go buy a car, I mean, just general types of things. What do you do when you're an empty nester? We're going to have inspirational stories, lots of little segments in there where we collect stories about life. It's going to be really different. It's not just going to be one topic that we talk about for an hour. It's going to have lots of little different things in there.

Melanie Avalon: It's exciting.

Gin Stephens: I know. I can't wait. Anyway, so what's up with you?

Melanie Avalon: Well, speaking of my other show, which is the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, I probably said this before. I do this thing where I have guests booked for a certain amount of time, like out in the calendar. And then, I'll start stressing and like, “Oh, what if I run out of guests?” So, then I'll massively email 10 or 15 people, and then half of them answer and say they want to come on and then I get really stressed because I'm like, “Oh, my goodness, so many more shows to prep now.” So, I did that. I have a lot of really exciting guests coming on, including one of them who Gin already knows, but Dr. Fung. I am so excited!

Gin Stephens: Very exciting!

Melanie Avalon: It's very weird that we haven't talked to him before, either of us, because you haven't, right? Have you ever talked to him?

Gin Stephens: No, I haven't. I've never talked to him. I feel I've been running along. But I'm sure, yeah, I remember several years ago, even right after Delay, Don't Deny came out maybe, at some point in 2017, I was talking to my sister as my communities were getting bigger and as my book was selling pretty well. And I said, “I wonder if Dr. Fung knows who I am.” She's like, “Oh, he knows.” Just like how we know of everybody. I mean I can't imagine that no one's ever walked into his office and said, “I read Delay, Don't Deny.” I mean, surely. As I look at the weight loss diets category on Amazon, Fast. Feast. Repeat. is usually right next to The Obesity Code, like they've been wanting to every day. Yeah. So, I mean, unless he never looks at Amazon. Oh, can I tell you something? It's hilarious, but a little sad.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: There's a new book on Amazon. And it's called Fast. Feast. Repeat. And it has Delay, Don't Deny also in the subtitle, and it was written by Dr. Gin Herring.

Melanie Avalon: Oh my gosh. It's ridiculous.

Gin Stephens: I know, I would really like to meet Dr. Gin Herring because she sounds amazing. And her title is so very similar to mine. And has 81 five-star reviews. And one of them said that they've read all of my books, and they love them.

Melanie Avalon: All of your books?

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Uh-huh. Mine, me. So, people do not buy Fast. Feast. Repeat. by Dr. Gin Herring, because that is a fake person and that is not my book. So, I've emailed my publisher, hopefully they can get that one taken down. But, clearly, I mean, it's ranked in the top 100,000 of all books on Amazon, which means somebody is buying it.

Melanie Avalon: Right. It's insane.

Gin Stephens: It is insane. Amazon should really do a better job because they know that that is nothing but a copycat. They should know. You would think that with the way you publish self-published on Amazon with Kindle Direct Publishing, it has to go through like a process and then it gets approved. They need to put human eyeballs on those books and say, “Is this a copycat of a book that's already out there with the name that's almost exactly the same as the real author?” Because there are a lot of people that is their entire business model is making books that are almost like a real book. And the name of the author is clearly not real, because it's-- there was one book called Fast. Feast. Repeat. The Cookbook, written by Steven Gin.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness.

Gin Stephens: I know. I feel like Amazon should be able to notice that's not really a real book and that it's just there to trick people. Amazon, I'm counting on you. You can clean this up. I love you but you're going to have to do a little better. That's all I have to say.

Melanie Avalon: I have an exciting announcement that I realized we never announced.

Gin Stephens: Ooh, what is that?

Melanie Avalon: I'm really upset. We'd like implemented this, but then we never actually told the listeners.

Gin Stephens: Oh my God. What is it?

Melanie Avalon: You might not even know.

Gin Stephens: I might not know.

Melanie Avalon: Our episode show notes have transcripts.

Gin Stephens: Oh, I knew that we were doing it. I saw it through emails when they're sending them, but I didn't know that it was like--

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, I'm going to start saying that. When you go to the show notes for today's episode, ifpodcast.com/episode185, there are transcripts.

Gin Stephens: Awesome.

Melanie Avalon: So, if you miss something, I guess people who can't hear will not be listening to this right now. But we did get requests from people who are deaf. So now, they can read it. And yeah.

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm so glad.

Melanie Avalon: Yep.

Gin Stephens: All right. Well, are we ready to get started? The first question is a very important one, a doozy, and oh my God, I've been so angry about this whole thing. So, literally angry. Go ahead, read it.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Our first question comes from Megan. The subject is "TREAT Clinical Trial." And Megan says, “Hello, ladies. I appreciate your podcast and thorough research and explanations. Can you guys please review and comment on the TREAT clinical trial of intermittent fasting? They found no weight loss in 12 weeks with overweight and obese patients. I'd love your thoughts.”

Gin Stephens: All right. Yeah, I'd be glad to talk about that. First of all, I'm so proud of my community, because I posted an announcement about this the day after it came out and the comment section was just beautiful. So, bravo to all of you in the community, they get it, they understand it, they understand what was wrong with this study. It's not that there's necessarily something wrong with the study, although I definitely have some thoughts about that. But it's the conclusion that made me angry. Okay.

Let me read it. I'm sure everybody's probably seen the headlines, but the name of the study, “Effects of time-restricted eating on weight loss, and other metabolic parameters in women and men with overweight and obesity, the TREAT randomized clinical trial.” Now, I'm not going to tell you anything about the study other than let me read the conclusion to you. If all you read was the title and the conclusion is what I'm trying to get across. Okay, so the title you got what that is. The conclusion is, “Time-restricted eating, in the absence of other interventions, is not more effective in weight loss than eating throughout the day.” I see red every time I read that, that is one sentence. Okay, now, why is this so frustrating? That's when we need to talk about what did they actually do.

Basically, they put people into two groups, okay, and one group for 12 weeks. These were people, men and women, 18 to 64 years old who had a BMI from 27 to 43. So, it's really important to know also that these people were overweight or obese. Every person was overweight or obese. And they put them in two groups. One group was told to eat three structured meals a day, and the other group was told to do 16:8 eating whatever they wanted, ad libitum is scientific words for that. Eat however you want, from noon till 8:00 PM. So, the one group was told eat three meals a day, and the other group was told eat whatever you want in an eight-hour eating window,

Melanie Avalon: And the three meal a day group could have snacking.

Gin Stephens: They could also have snacks if they want, yes. But also, of course, they were not clean fasting, the group that was fasting was not fast and clean. But that's a whole other wrinkle. And so, I'm not even going to get into that right now. But they did 16:8, the participants were overweight and obese, and they did 16:8. And so, I think the conclusion should be time-restricted eating with a 16:8 approach, in the absence of other interventions, is not more effective in weight loss than eating throughout the day. But you know what? I said that in Fast. Feast. Repeat. I have a whole section where I talk about different eating windows, and in that section, I say 16:8 is not enough fasting for weight loss for most of us. I mean it's the approach my husband, who is thin and didn't need to lose weight, it's what he does.

So, I am so irate that they used a study of 16:8, and then generalized it to, “Oh, time-restricted eating doesn't work,” because that is ridiculous. We've got Krista Varady’s research that she did earlier this year and I guess the media can't remember that they just reported about this one in June. Krista Varady, who is a well-respected intermittent fasting researcher-- actually it was July. She found that there was weight loss in a four-hour or six-hour eating window. So, the part that's so frustrating is we've been saying a lot from the beginning all along based on what we see with people who are intermittent fasters that eight hours may not be a short enough feeding window. 16 hours may not be enough fasting. You're not going to flip that metabolic switch, a lot of people. And so, it's just been very frustrating to see the media were like, “Well, it just showed intermittent fasting doesn't work.” That's not what it showed at all. All right. That's my ranting.

Melanie Avalon: You know what else is interesting?

Gin Stephens: What?

Melanie Avalon: It's also interesting that both groups lost weight.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, exactly. And actually, they did lose more. The eight-hour eating window group did lose more, but it wasn't statistically significant. So, there is that little feature as well. But we often see that with people that are overweight and obese, it can take their bodies longer to adjust to intermittent fasting. We know that if you're overweight and obese, you probably have higher fasting insulin levels. So, it's going to take more time for that to correct. I mean there's so many variables here, but the way that the media just gleefully said, “Oh, look, intermittent fasting doesn't work.” Forget about the fact that just two months ago, we had a study that showed it did. Anyway, but then people were freaking out. And I did just say how my community was overall fabulous. But a few people tried to post like, “Oh my God, it doesn't work.” She's like, “I've lost for 40 pounds. But I just saw study that said it doesn't work.” Well, clearly, it worked if you lost 40 pounds, so we've got to really think about this. No one told my body intermittent fasting didn't work when I lost 80 pounds.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, and the thing is, I do find the response that's been so passionate and fearful in a way. I can't make objective statements, but I don't really ever see myself becoming fearful or freaking out from a study. It's just information.

Gin Stephens: One of the thing that freaked people out was that they had a little muscle mass loss.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, actually, yeah, we should talk about that.

Gin Stephens: But here's my thought there. First of all, they were not fasting clean, because they were allowed to drink zero-calorie beverages, I'm assuming they had diet sodas, I don't even really know. They even said, for example, only 83% of the fasting group even was compliant. So, I don't even know what that means. Maybe only 83% even did it and it was self-reported. So maybe the compliance was even worse than that. We don't know. But they were not fasting clean. They were not fasting clean, and they were very likely not fat adapted. So, the whole magic, what Dr. Mark Mattson always talks about in his work for the New England Journal of Medicine in his research, flipping that metabolic switch and becoming fat adapted is key, if you want to tap into fat stores, that's part of the metabolic magic, is that being fat adapted.

Melanie Avalon: I was really shocked actually by the muscle mass loss because, yeah, what they found was that the weight loss did seem to be mostly for muscle.

Gin Stephens: And can I tell you, a friend of mine actually emailed Mark Mattson? I did not. I'm scared to reach out to him because I was such a fan.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, wait, wait, wait. This is hysterical. I don't know, because I just feel I'm reaching out to everybody all the time.

Gin Stephens: I just love Mark Mattson so much. Anyway, but my friend, she's a moderator in my group, sent him an email, and he replied, do you want to know what he said?

Melanie Avalon: Maybe I should email him. What did he say?

Gin Stephens: The two major flaws in the JAMA study were that they did not determine calorie intake or diet composition. And they did not track exercise levels. His point, I guess, being that the two groups were so different.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Maybe the eight-hour people were actually eating more. And therefore, it was kind of amazing that they-- you know what I'm saying? We don't know, they might have eaten more food in eight hours.

Melanie Avalon: We don't know. But they could have been eating twice the amount and have comparable-- So, let's say that was the case. This is just hypothetical. But just to play a story game. If they were eating way more, but lost the same or even more, you would have a completely different conclusion sentence. I mean, you could.

Gin Stephens: You surely would, but we don't know because we don't know what they ate. So, really, if they had matched the groups controlled for calories, or given the exact same amount of food, just eating in a different pattern, then you would know. Basically, this study shows that if you tell people eat whatever you want for eight hours, you're not likely to lose weight. But I learned that when I read the eight-hour diet that promised you could and I didn't, it didn't work for me-- So, just to say that again, in case people, I really think this study showed that telling people to eat whatever you want for eight hours is not good for weight loss. That's all it showed.

Melanie Avalon: My version of the study would be like, add in another factor, like eat only whole foods or something and see what happens. I've had James Clement on my show, he wrote a book called The Switch. I'll put a link to that episode in the show notes. But he's really big in this world. And I asked him his thoughts. And he said, basically, something similar to what you just said, you can't just necessarily eat whatever you want for this amount of time and expect weight loss.

Gin Stephens: Although they did lose a little weight. They did lose a little. But they could have been eating twice as much as the other people and we just don't know, that would have been a great study if we knew what they were eating. Of course, self-reporting is always hard. But if they gave them like, “Here's the food you're all going to eat,” like match them in a different way. The variables were not very controlled.

Melanie Avalon: What I want to know is how they did determine estimated energy intake because they did. It's weird, they estimated the energy intake. So, they said, at the end they have a section called Strengths and Limitations, and they say that, “A limitation is we do not have self-reported measures of energy or macronutrient intake. Although we did not measure calorie intake, mathematical modeling of changes in energy intake suggests that calorie intake did not significantly differ between groups. This model has been validated to be more accurate than self-reported energy intake.” I need to like look into this. I don't even know what that is.

Gin Stephens: We didn't count calories, but we used this other method to estimate-- I don't know, that's weird.

Melanie Avalon: The studies that are linked to for that are ones called objective versus self-reported energy intake changes during low carb and low-fat diets. And the second one is validation of an inexpensive and accurate mathematical method to measure long-term changes in free-living energy intake. Listeners, I apologize that I haven't read those yet. I'm going to report back on this. That's interesting. I want to know what this magical mathematical model is that's more valuable than self-reporting.

Gin Stephens: I know that mathematically knows what how much you're eating.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't know. I'm very intrigued. That’s like Santa Claus.

Gin Stephens: Is it riding a unicorn?

Melanie Avalon: I don't know.

Gin Stephens: All right. Now can I also tell you one of the conflicts of interest?

Melanie Avalon: Uh-huh.

Gin Stephens: One of the scientists that was on this is a cofounder and equity stakeholder of a company that is keto. It's a keto company. They sell a breath analyzer for keto and also lots of keto snacks. Yeah, they would have a lot of interest if they're selling you snacks, that they would have an interest in wanting you to not fast because they want to sell you keto snacks. I just thought that was interesting. I didn't even notice that, it was somebody in my group that noticed it, that they had that conflict. Oh, and another one of them, also two of them have connections to that keto group, the keto company. I just think that's interesting.

Melanie Avalon: I want to know if-- because I read a lot of the coverages of this, like the articles about it and there have been some interviews with the main guy. They make it sound like he says he's stopping intermittent fasting from what he found, but I want to know if they twisted his words. The way they posited it, I could see how maybe they did but I'm not sure, I don't know, this is just me.

Gin Stephens: How they twisted it?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I mean I can tell you right now, I am 51 years old. I am menopausal, by the way, I'm on the other side. I'm officially there. I'm officially in menopause. I don't even know what words to use. I'm not sure how to say it. I don't have muscle measurement prior to starting intermittent fasting when I was obese versus now. But I'm not sitting here with lack of muscle. I mean I've been doing intermittent fasting since 2014 and I'm not sitting here, this emaciated muscleless old lady. In fact, my Shapa scale that you stand on every morning that I talked about in another episode, estimates my age based on my body composition alone, as 31.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'm 51. My Shapa scale this morning said, my Shapa age based on my body composition is 31. So does that sound like--

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to get the Shapa scale.

Gin Stephens: Oh my God, I love it so much. Go to ginstephens.com/favoritethings tab everybody. There's a promo code there. It's IFSTORIES. I love getting on the scale. I just went to the beach, like I said, and you come back from vacation and you probably ate out several times. I got on the scale anyway, I didn't care because I can't see the number. I just got on and got off because I don't have to be tied to a number.

Melanie Avalon: It's very exciting.

Gin Stephens: I just see my color, but my age was 30 before I went to the beach, and now it's 31. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: That is funny.

Gin Stephens: So, I probably have a little water retention, but it doesn't matter. I'm not upset about it. But I am not sitting here like this crazy muscleless 51-year-old person. Anyway, I know I'm just one person, but I don't also have an eight-hour eating window day after day after day and drinking my zero-calorie sodas. I don't. I drink black coffee. I drink plain water. I fast clean. I have a four-ish, five-ish hour eating window. It works great.

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Melanie Avalon: Megan also says, “In general, how do you guys respond in your personal lives when someone uses studies like this to tell you ‘IF is wrong,’ just trying to prepare myself.”

Gin Stephens: I think the key is in really understanding what the study was because when I first saw the headlines, the first person sent me the article saying intermittent fasting doesn't work-- Okay, first of all, we have hundreds of thousands of people that would say otherwise. But I couldn't wait to get my eyes on the actual study. And then, when I read it, I was like, “Well, okay, I'm not surprised at all that they found that out.” In fact, if you had said to me, “Hey, Gin, let me tell you this study design, what do you think they'll find?” I would have not been surprised at that. I would actually really love to work with some scientists. I mean I have a doctorate in gifted education, I know about research design. And I also have a lot of practical experience with intermittent fasters, hundreds of thousands of them. I would love to help someone design a study at a research institute, work with them as a consultant for free. I would just love to do it, help design this study. A study with clean fasting, a study that we can really give them a long period of time. Let's control those variables. I mean, I know how to control variables, my elementary science lab background. I have a master's degree in science education for kids, I did the science fair with kids for years and years and years. Elementary kids know how to control variables better than some of the research studies I've read.

Melanie Avalon: I still think I have the most brilliant idea for an intermittent fasting study. [unintelligible [00:32:45] I think I've said it before, I think it would be a way to completely get rid of the placebo effect. You have to take a pill, like you think the study is about the pill and the qualifications of the pill is it can't be taken with food. And the way it's set up is it'll force you into a window without realizing it. So, you'll be taking pills at certain times, and it'll force you into a window. You think they're testing the pill, but really, they're testing fasting.

Gin Stephens: That's a great idea.

Melanie Avalon: Isn't it?

Gin Stephens: And I also think you should have one more group that doesn't take the pill that-- see if those two groups have any differences. One group that fasts with the pill, one group that fasts without the pill, and then the other group.

Melanie Avalon: A group that knows they're fasting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: But without the pill.

Gin Stephens: Because the pill is also a variable. See, that's the thing. That's the tricky part with people. The pill is also a variable, even though you're doing it-- because maybe the pill’s affecting them some way.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because the way I was thinking it would be two groups and a control group. But the two groups taking the pill, one group because of the timing of when they have to take it, it forces them into an eating window than the other group. Yeah, the other group, it doesn't.

Gin Stephens: But what if the pill itself affects their fast somehow?

Melanie Avalon: That's always the thing.

Gin Stephens: Right. That's why I would have a group that didn't take the pill, just to see.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think would be a really cool study though.

Gin Stephens: Well, anyway, it's just so frustrating to me. I have a listserv that I'm on, is that what it's called? I don't even know, where I get email. It's like an email a summary of obesity. It's like obesity and something, something, whatever. And it's all the studies that relate to obesity and weight loss in any way, shape, or form. And they have a section, study versus headline.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I like that.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Let me find one and I'll share it with you because it's hilarious, but study versus headline are so funny because really the reports-- here it is, Obesity and Energetics Offerings is the name of it. Okay, so headline versus study. All right, here's a study. Vitamin D deficiency serves as a precursor to stunted growth and central adiposity, I hate to say it, in zebrafish. That was important. The headline was, “Vitamin D deficiency can lead to obesity.”

Melanie Avalon: Oh my gosh.

Gin Stephens: Okay. There's one example. All right, let me read another one.

Melanie Avalon: That's ridiculous.

Gin Stephens: I know. Headline versus study. Study, perceived change in physical activity levels and mental health during COVID-19. Findings among adult twin pairs. Headline, researchers perplexed, COVID-19 stress may be hard to beat, even with exercise.

Melanie Avalon: I'd have to read that study.

Gin Stephens: Here's another one. Study, REM sleep stabilizes hypothalamic-- I'm sure I said that wrong-- representation of feeding behavior in mice. Headline, REM sleep affects our eating habits. They just over-generalize, and the way they've portrayed this study is just maddening. And I also saw, I don't know if I'm allowed to say that Jason Fung also responded to you about it. And he's not a fan of the study, either. Right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it was perfect timing, because I had literally just booked him-- or talking to him about booking him for the show. And so, I was like, “I hope you're surviving the TREAT study.” And he said clearly, something about like, that's what happens when you have people who have never--

Gin Stephens: With no clinical experience with intermittent fasting?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, try to design a fasting study.

Gin Stephens: That's why I think that I'd be really good at helping scientists design a fasting study because we really have a lot of anecdotal of what's worked and what hasn't, and what people have tweaked and what has led to success versus when they weren't finding success. So, I know that what we have is not hard science, but it's absolutely valuable. It should not be discounted, just because we're real people in a group. We're people who are trying, and we know what things are working. And it's often not 16:8. That's why I said that in Fast. Feast. Repeat. You may really love 16:8-- because people sell it as like, easy. If only it was just that easy. Just do a 16:8, you're going to lose weight, it's going to be fabulous, eat whatever you want. Except that's not what happens.

Melanie Avalon: I think it can actually make you a million times worse potentially if you are doing 16:8 seeing it as like this binge fast, eat all you want. And then, if you're eating things that are close to my heart, like high seed oils, fats that are wrecking you metabolically, if you're just going to town on those during this time, I mean, I just think it will make things worse.

Gin Stephens: I think eating terribly for eight hours and fasting for 16 could be more detrimental than eating a healthy diet within a more standard like a 12-hour-period.

Melanie Avalon: If I had to choose between those, 200%.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, so a lot of frustration in the intermittent fasting world. Hopefully, the attention span will be short. There'll be something shiny for them to talk about next. And maybe another good study will come out. But, again, replying to Megan, I'm not sure I really answered her question. How do you respond when someone uses studies like this to tell you IF is wrong? You need to be really aware of what the study actually did. Go to the study. Don't just read what the media tells you about the study, read the study. And then, if you're educated, you can start picking out the flaws.

I've mentioned this before. I read a study one time, I read sections of it to fourth graders who were able to find the flaw in the control. Yeah, there was one group that was eating low carb, and one group is eating low fat, but that group was allowed to eat-- I mean, it was ridiculous. It didn't show anything. And the kids are like, “They didn't control that variable.” I'm like, “Yeah, but they used this to prove something.” Anyway. So, do your research, and also, if you know it's working for you and you feel better, trust that. I trust my body, and my body loves this.

Melanie Avalon: You can find a study to pretty much say anything about anything you're doing. And probably, it'll say it's right or it's wrong.

Gin Stephens: It's true.

Melanie Avalon: When it comes to food, at least.

Gin Stephens: It's true.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. This is what I said earlier. I don't have any fear about studies, I literally have zero fear, zero, because if you think about it logically, if the reason it's so terrifying is because it was poorly constructed, or it's not making the right conclusions, or it wasn't-- if there's a reason, then it doesn't matter. Then, there's no reason to fear. If it does show something, okay, there's something to learn from that. There's no reason to be scared. I don't think we should ever be scared of knowledge or questioning or looking at new information. And this is not a good example, because we just talked about how this study is more an example of the first situation where it's not even something to be scared of.

Gin Stephens: You go back to that conclusion. Let me read this again, listeners. The conclusion was, “Time-restricted eating in the absence of other interventions is not more effective in weight loss than eating throughout the day.” And I would just like to say, how many times have we tried weight loss eating throughout the day? And we were able to lose weight, but were we able to keep it off? For me, I lost weight 100 different ways and never one time in my life, did I keep it off until time-restricted eating. So many flaws in that conclusion. I mean, actually maybe 12 weeks of a low-calorie diet where I was eating throughout the day, maybe I would have lost more weight than with time-restricted eating, I don't know. But there's more to it than just head to head, which one makes you lose more weight? Talk to me after you've been doing it for four years, and your fasting insulin levels are normalized and your A1c is normalized and that's really important.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Exactly. Don't have fear. That's the other thing, if you have fear, you're not going to want to-- I don't think we should be scared of looking at anything, even if it's wrong. Don't have fear. There's no reason not to. And to her question about how do you respond? Gin just said it really well, you can talk about what the study actually showed, what we do know, personal experience, and all of the myriad of other studies that show the complete opposite. So, there's so much research.

Gin Stephens: Yep. All right. Moving on to a question from Jeff.

Melanie Avalon: I knew that was going to be like most of our episode today.

Gin Stephens: I knew it was too. It was important, and I'm sure it made a lot of people out there go, “Ha-ha, I told you so. Intermittent fasting doesn't work.” I mean, “No.”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the next question kind of ties into this as well.

Gin Stephens: I also find, Melanie, that what's so interesting whenever I'm talking to people, and they're like, “Well, I tried intermittent fasting, and it didn't work for me.” Whenever I'm having that conversation with someone, they were not fasting clean, I mean, 100% of the time, I'm like, “Well, what did you drink?” They're like, “Well, I would start my day with coffee with butter and coconut oil. And then, I would have diet sodas, and then I would have a Gatorade Zero.” I'm like, “All right, well, I bet you're starving all the time, weren't you?”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: And they're like, “Yeah.” I'm like, “Well, let me tell you why.”

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Gin Stephens: We have a question from Jeff the subject is “Early is better?” He said, “I listened to Dr. Greger on nutrition facts. He says that eating your calories earlier is better given circadian rhythm and all that. So, I try. And my window is 11:00 to 7:00. I snack from 11 kind of on healthy snacks and then supper time, I pretty much eat what I want, but not too heavy. And then, if I stop eating after seven, I know I'll go to bed with a light belly and all is good. Question I have is do you see value in Dr. Greger’s advice and would you consider sharing that with your listeners. Because of circadian rhythm our bodies metabolize calories differently during the day than overnight.” And that is Dr. Greger’s theory, that's just me saying that, that last part, Jeff wrote it, but he was summarizing Dr. Greger’s theory.

Melanie Avalon: Actually, I'm glad we had this question too because it was one other thing to clarify from the TREAT study that we didn't mention was-- I think it's interesting people's perceptions of early versus late because in the study that we just talked about their window was 12:00 to 8:00. And they were considering that a late window because one of the things they talked about in the end was saying that maybe if it had been an earlier window, so like a breakfast, lunch situation, that the results might have been different, which is interesting. I feel like they probably-- I don't know if it would have been different.

Gin Stephens: For me, it would have been harder to stay compliant. I wonder if they'd have seen their compliance numbers go down from 80. I mean, 83% is not a huge compliance amount.

Melanie Avalon: The reason they said that they wanted to do 12:00 to 8:00 was they thought people would be more compliant because it was easier to skip breakfast, and, yeah, skip dinner. But I just thought was also interesting because Jeff is doing a very similar window. He's doing 11:00 to 7:00 instead of 12:00 to 8:00, but he's considering that an early window.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that is true. Good point.

Melanie Avalon: And for me, that would be an early window.

Gin Stephens: Me too. I'm not hungry at 11:00.

Melanie Avalon: I can't even say when I eat because people would freak out.

Gin Stephens: It's 2:00, and I'm not even hungry. 11:00 is like so early to me, though.

Melanie Avalon: I know. It really is. Yes, we've talked about this a little bit before. The main takeaways or the basic idea here at least, and this is just my opinion, but there is a lot of research looking at early versus late night eating. A lot of that research has people still eating though throughout the whole day. So, what happens is by the time evening comes, they have eaten earlier. So, it's not like they were fasting and then ate in the evening. Usually, it's just more weighted towards one side.

Gin Stephens: Can I clarify what you're saying? I know exactly what you mean. What you're saying is some of these studies show that later in the day, insulin sensitivity is worse, but they've been eating all day. So, it might have to do with the length of the time period that they were eating. If you eat for 12 hours, 14 hours in a row, later in that eating day, your insulin sensitivity is wrong. And it's not time of day that's the problem. The problem is that you've been eating all day.

Melanie Avalon: Because when you've been fasting, you're pretty insulin sensitive. If you're fasting all day and then you have a late eating time, you're probably going to be insulin sensitive. The times you're not insulin sensitive is if you've also been eating earlier.

Gin Stephens: We really need a study with the early window and a late window with all other variables being equal, which is what we don't have. A really good study. There's some study-- there is one that I've read, and they did do that, but it was very short, and they found no difference.

Melanie Avalon: I did find one. I think it's when we talked about on the show before and it actually did-- I'd have to revisit it, but it was controlled. And it did look at this and it did seem to find that early was better.

Gin Stephens: Is that the one though where they ate longer and the light one?

Melanie Avalon: It was the one with shift workers and they were trying to figure out if insulin and all of that, was it adapting to like the pattern of the eating or was it literally from like the circadian rhythm of the world, and it seemed to be from the circadian rhythm. At the beginning, it would adapt differently to the person.

Gin Stephens: Were they eating like in the middle of the night?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: See, that's a whole different variable also.

Melanie Avalon: It's been a while since I read it.

Gin Stephens: That is a completely different variable that to me, doesn't show anything because we know that shift work itself is an issue. You're waking and your sleeping at different times so there's more than just the eating is at a different time. Yeah, I don't think I would draw any conclusions from that.

Melanie Avalon: These are my personal thoughts, and this is not based on any one study. This is just--

Gin Stephens: Because we don't have one. We don't have a good one.

Melanie Avalon: This is just based on the collective literature that I've read to date, including a lot of Dr. Greger’s work, which I have talked about this before. I love reading his books because I get exposed to so many studies because he footnotes like every other sentence. That said, it's not-- Gin was getting upset in the beginning, now it's my turn to get upset.

Gin Stephens: Get upset, get upset.

Melanie Avalon: That said the overwhelming amount of cherry-picking that I perceive that he does, and misrepresentation of studies is very upsetting. And I think because he cites so many studies so constantly, he comes off as very authoritative and very like, “Oh, he knows what he's talking about because he just quoted the entirety of scientific literature and has references to it.” And I think a lot of people just take that at face value rather than going and looking and seeing what he's citing. A lot of it is spot on. Some of it is not spot on. Some of it's completely misinterpreted. But the main thing is he really, really just pulls the studies to support his primarily plant-based paradigm, doesn't represent the rest of the literature in my opinion. And I'm saying that as in kind of a way as I can, but that's just-- I don’t know how to say that. That's the sense I get.

The final thought is he also tries to make it very clear that he doesn't cherry-pick. He says that all the time. So, it's a little bit frustrating. That said, from everything that I've read and seen, I actually do think, I don't know, because the study hasn't been done. But I actually do think if everything was controlled, I actually think it'd be better for people eating earlier rather than later. I do.

Gin Stephens: And by better, you mean better with your physiology?

Melanie Avalon: Metabolically, yeah. I think it would probably be better for insulin, hormones, and sleep.

Gin Stephens: See, I can't sleep when I have an early window. I absolutely can't sleep when I have an early window. Have you ever tried it? Have you tried having an early window?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's always an epic fail. Which brings me to my second point.

Gin Stephens: But were you able to sleep?

Melanie Avalon: The reason I do think so is the best sleep I ever have is on those days when for some reason-- I mean, true. It's usually because I'm sleep deprived, so I need a nap. But it's like, when I take a nap and I'm in the fasted state, there's just something-- I don't know, I feel if I could fall asleep in the fasted state, and I don't mean severely fasted, but I don't know. I think if the body could be not digesting during these precious sleep regulating-- or during the part of our sleep, where we're supposed to be doing repair and all this stuff and not completely in the fed state, I think it would probably be more beneficial. I just personally is, what you just said, I can't really sleep on an empty stomach.

The second part of all this was, while I think in theory if you can magically force yourself into an early window versus a later window, while I think the early window would probably be better, I think practically a large percent of people, the way they can implement it, and stick to it, and keep to the eating window and get the benefits and sleep and do all these things is with a later eating window. And I think that practicality of it far, far, far outweighs any hypothetical concept of having it in the morning versus the evening.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, and it's all theoretical again. I've yet to see a long-term, well-designed study with all variables that were controlled, and they weren't eating in the middle of the night as shift workers work because that's a whole extra variable. I've yet to see one that was well designed and long term. The one really short one that we have, they found no difference.

Melanie Avalon: I'll have to double-check that one because I don't really remember the details.

Gin Stephens: Okay, but all this to say, I know people, personally, one of my moderator friends, she has a breakfast eating window. She wakes up, she eats breakfast, she closes her window by 11:00 or 12:00, and she feels best that way. She sleeps better when she does that. That 100% works better for her body. And so, that's the thing. Just because Melanie and I do better with a later window-- and my window is shifted earlier than Melanie's. I've been opening my window lately more around 2:00 or 3:00 a lot of days. And since I'm not drinking right now, closing my window at dinnertime, so no more after 7:00 because I'm not finishing up a glass of wine or anything. So, instead of having a window that's more like 4:00 to 9:00, it's more like 2:00 to 7:00. And that's feeling really good for me right now. But I wouldn't call that an early window, or a late window. It's just like a dinner hour.

Melanie Avalon: To me, it would be so early!

Gin Stephens: Yeah. See?

Melanie Avalon: That's so funny. Which is a good example of how-- I'm like an extreme case scenario.

Gin Stephens: Also, how my window has shifted over time. And honestly, it was later because of wine. It was my wine window. By the way, I'm sleeping so great. Sleeping so great. I had wine the other day. I had a couple glasses of wine, and I didn't feel as well. I'm not going to never drink again but--

Melanie Avalon: I'm not going to never not drink again.

Gin Stephens: Well, good.

Melanie Avalon: No, that's not true. I mean, I don't anticipate going completely sober for a year and a half. By sober I mean, like not drinking.

Gin Stephens: I went to the beach last week and didn't drink the whole time I was there. And I had just as much fun. I worried about that because I thought back and from even when I was a child, my mother and watching the adults with their cocktails, and that's how they relax, that's how they had fun. Then, I went to college, and it just became internalized like, “Oh, if we're having fun, if we're at the beach, if we're at a party, we've got to have alcohol, that's what you do.” So, I was like, “Alright,” well, this is the first time I ever in my entire life, went to the beach with a friend and did not drink alcohol the whole time. Which sounds crazy, but it's true. I mean ever since I've been an adult. I mean I was like 12 years old at the beach with a friend not drinking. But I mean as a grownup who legally can drink. I drove everywhere. I didn't have to take Uber. That was really nice. I just drove and at a restaurant, I got club soda with a splash of cranberry and some lime. And I felt like I was having a cocktail. I had just as much fun. I didn't feel like I missed a thing. It was very eye opening. I just drank because I felt like it's what you did. And I also slept so much better at the beach, anyway.

We're all so different. We really, really are. That's the point. You do great with the wine. I don't do as great. I still love it. I'm still going to have it here and there. But never, never again, like as a day-to-day part of my life, I think. I think I can safely say that. I'm never going to have a daily glass of wine.

Melanie Avalon: And I think I probably will or like a quarter of a glass at least. I've said this before, but to clarify when I was-- the year and a half, I actually was still having like a tablespoon of liquid wine.

Gin Stephens: I just can't imagine having a tablespoon of wine.

Melanie Avalon: Like a sip. Just a sip, as a medicine or something.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I get it. I really love wine. I love it.

Melanie Avalon: If listeners do drink wine, drink the only wine I drink, which is Dry Farm Wines.

Gin Stephens: Dry Farm Wines, I'm a fan. It's the only wine I will drink from now on for the rest of my life. I can say that 100% because if I'm somewhere and they have just standard one, I'd rather drink zero. Nothing.

Melanie Avalon: I was thinking about this. I haven't been like-- I don't know if bars are even open right now. But I haven't been out to like a bar.

Gin Stephens: They are.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. I haven't been out in that type of setting in quite a while. And now I'm like, “What will I do if I--"

Gin Stephens: Caveat, they are where I am.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they are here too, I think. Actually, there's one bar I really want to go to where I think they have some sort of like-- they were the first one in Atlanta to have an air COVID-purifying system thing.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that sounds good.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know how that actually works. But I was like, “Oh, that sounds exciting.” Oh, yeah, I think we talked about this and it's a speakeasy, which they don't have in Augusta.

Gin Stephens: I don't know if we talked about that on the air or off the air. I think it was off the air.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I had just as much fun having my club soda with a splash of cranberry. I felt like I was drinking a cocktail. And I had just as much fun. So, it's a new chapter. The first time I go anywhere with my college friends and I'm like, “I'm going to have club soda with cranberry.” They're going to be like, “What!?”

Melanie Avalon: That is a nice thing. You can order that, and if you don't say that it's not a drink--

Gin Stephens: I don't care if people think I'm drinking or not drinking or anything. I want to feel good, that's what I've come to terms with. And so, I feel better when I don't drink. And that's crazy to me because drinking has been part of my life. 30 years, I've been drinking legally.

Melanie Avalon: For listeners who do want to drink, you can go to dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast and get a bottle for a penny.

Gin Stephens: You sure can and I highly recommend it. I highly recommend it!

Melanie Avalon: Me too.

Gin Stephens: Even though, so. I'm definitely not anti-drinking, or anti-people who want to drink around me, but I didn't feel like I was missing out, that was the part that was crazy. Other people were drinking around me, my friend was drinking. We had another moderator friend that came down to spend a night with us. There were three of us. They both opened a bottle of Cava.

Melanie Avalon: Like Kava-kava? Did they brew it?

Gin Stephens: Well, Spanish wine. Am I saying it wrong? C-A-V-A? Is it Cava? I don't know. It's a Spanish sparkling wine?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I thought you're talking about kava-kava, like the tea.

Gin Stephens: Oh, no. This was Spanish sparkling wine. Yeah, they were drinking Spanish sparkling white wine. They call it Cava, isn't that how they say it? Anyway, whatever. However, they say it I've only seen it written and never heard anyone say it as far as I know. But they were drinking it in champagne glasses right there in my condo. And I was like, “I don't even want to have it. I'm going to drive us to dinner. I'll be fine.” And I was like, I've never driven to dinner at the beach because we always are drinking. It was very different. So, anyway, I liked it.

Melanie Avalon: So, good times.

Gin Stephens: It is good times. We had a really good time.

Melanie Avalon: Well, for listeners, the show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode185. Those show notes will have transcripts. So, definitely check that out. If you'd like to submit your own questions to the podcast, you can directly email questions at 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'm @melanieavalon, Gin's @ginstephens. And I think that is it. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: No, I think that's it.

Melanie Avalon: All right. I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right. Talk to you then.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

Gin Stephens: Bye-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. Theme 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! 

 

 

Oct 25

Episode 184: Dual Sleep, Cold Coffee Causing Nausea, Vagus Nerve Toning, Biohacking, Protein Intake, Human Growth Hormone And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

 Subscribe For Updates HERE!

Welcome to Episode 184 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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SHOW NOTES

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7:30 - Listener Q&A Follow Up: Emily - Shift Work And Weightloss

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16:45 - Listener Q&A Follow Up: Megan - Iced Coffee Vs Hot Coffee

Ami Brannon (Xen By Neuvana): Vagus Nerve Toning, Meditation Alternatives, The Mind/Body Connection, Rebalance Your Body, Lasting Stress Relief, Neuroplasticity, Polyvagal Theory, And More!

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22:40 - Listener Q&A Follow Up: Paula - IF

The Immunity Code: The New Paradigm for Immune Centric Health and Radical Anti-Aging (Joel Greene)

Cyrus Khambatta, PHD and Robby Barbaro MPH – The Benefits Of High Carb Low Fat, Mastering Diabetes, Blood Sugar And Insulin Regulation, Saturated Fat Problems, Mixed Meals, Glycogen Storage Potential, Low Carb Issues, And More!

Dr. Dave Rabin (Apollo Neuro): Stop Stress With Sound Wave Therapy, The Power Of Safety, Healing Hugs, Combatting Fear, Parasympathetic Vs Sympathetic States, Making Change, Flow States, And More!

Get 15% Off Apollo Neuro At apolloneuro.com/melanieavalon

43:30 - Listener Q&A Follow Up: Carol - Determining Adequate Intake and IF/HGH

48:45 - BIOPTIMIZERS: Go To Bioptimizers.com/IFPodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 184 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about one of our sponsors, Prep Dish. Prep Dish is changing the way thousands of families do mealtime. Here's how it works. Prep Dish thoughtfully crafts a week's worth of gluten-free and paleo meals that feature seasonal ingredients to make the most of your budget, save you time, and surprise your taste buds. You may be thinking, but we aren't gluten free or paleo. Well, when I have used Prep Dish, my family didn't even notice that the meals were gluten free because they are based on real food ingredients and the meals were delicious. There's also a keto plan if that's what you're looking for.

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Melanie Avalon: And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that what you put on your skin gets direct access to your bloodstream and in your body can do a lot of detrimental things? So, while you may be fasting clean, you may at the same time be infusing your body with endocrine disrupters, which can mess with your hormones, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight and even carcinogens.

In Europe, they've banned thousands of these compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup, and the US has banned less than 10. In fact, most conventional lipstick for example is high in lead. And the half-life of lead in the body can be up to 30 years. That means every time you put on some lipstick, you might be putting some lead into your bones, which might not leave for three decades. This is a big deal.

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

All right, now enjoy the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 184 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Gin Stephens.

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody.

Melanie Avalon: How are you today, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm sitting here drinking hot water in a mug, so you know how I am.

Melanie Avalon: It's warm again, though.

Gin Stephens: It's not warm here.

Melanie Avalon: Really?

Gin Stephens: Well, okay, it's warmer, but it's very cloudy, and it is warmer than it had been. But my feet were cold. I'm wearing short sleeves and cropped jeans. And so, I guess I was walking around the house. Our house has a very cold floor. I think I said that last time. So, my feet got cold, so I was getting something to drink to take into the podcast studio, and I said I think I want hot water.

Melanie Avalon: I'm sorry that you're struggling.

Gin Stephens: That's all right. Yeah. Going to the beach next week and I think I'm going to take my Uggs.

Melanie Avalon: Oh my goodness.

Gin Stephens: I don't even know if Uggs are still in style, but I don't care because they're so cozy.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, see, I don't like shoes that are enclosed like that.

Gin Stephens: I don't like shoes that you have to wear socks with.

Melanie Avalon: Ugh, me neither.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, so I'm great with barefoot season. I'm great with flip-flops and sandals. I can wear Uggs because you don't have to wear socks, and I can also wear Mini-tonka, what are they moccasins? Because you don't have to wear socks. But I don't do well with socks.

Melanie Avalon: I don't like socks. We have something in common.

Gin Stephens: Yay! My feet like to be free. So, anyway.

Melanie Avalon: I haven't actually been outside yet today, so I don't know if it's--

Gin Stephens: We went and ran some errands. It just is the gross-feeling cloudy, fall day. It's not one of those beautiful, crisp fall days. It's just a yucky, kind of wet-- It's not cold, it's probably 78 degrees. So, people are going to be laughing at me. But it's dreary. 78 and sunny is very different than 78 and a wet, cloudy.

Melanie Avalon: This is true.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. It's very humid. It's very, very humid and cloudy. It's like a sticky kind of cloudy,

Melanie Avalon: I actually got happy that it was humid and sticky for a very random reason because normally I don't like that. Remember how I had the flood in my apartment?

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: The apartment people are just not pulling it together. They're not fixing it. They're not doing mold testing or whatever. So, I was like, "I'm just going to do my own mold testing." So, I had a service come and I scheduled it. And then for like, the two days before it was raining. So, I turned off, because I want it to come back positive.

Gin Stephens: So, they have to fix it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, I was like, “What can I do to like maximize mold?" So, been turning off all my air purifiers and was like, “Let the moisture come.” So, they came, we'll see. They did air tests, which are apparently the most valid form of testing.

Gin Stephens: I would like you to have no mold and then not have to do any mold remediation.

Melanie Avalon: Right. That would be ideal. But I mean, either way, I'll get it dealt with. So, yeah. I will just say, friends, if you at all are suspicious about mold, please check for it. I lived in a moldy apartment for two years. And I think it like-- if you're susceptible to it-- if it has an effect on your body, it can really have an effect on your body.

Gin Stephens: I think so.

Melanie Avalon: Well, on that deary note, shall we-- just want to jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yep, let's get started.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, to start things off, we have a slight follow-up, something that we said we would get back to last time, which I feel like every time we do that we don't always get back to it, but we're getting back to it. So, yay. Emily had asked us about her shiftwork weight loss, intermittent fasting, like crazy sleep schedule, where she would sleep from 10:00 PM to 2:00 AM, do a paper route from 2:00 to 4:00 AM, and then sleep from 4:00 to 7:00 AM, which was a very crazy sleep schedule. We had talked about the fascinating-- Was it mid-Victorian people?

Gin Stephens: I think in general just it being like the-- I've just read articles that indicated that's how they lived. Medieval times, or I don't know, that was the natural way to be.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so they would go to sleep and then wake up and then go to sleep. So, I asked the resident sleep expert, Dr. Kirk Parsley, who I've had on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, I'll put a link to that in the show notes. I asked him about it, and he obviously knew everything about it. He said it was called dual sleep, and it occurred roughly 22 longitudinal above or below the equator. And it was because nights were 10 to 12 hours at night. The people would sleep in two halves of the night, and they would wake up in the middle to do activities and hang out while the kids were still asleep. So, that's different than today where we're only sleeping-- we're lucky if we're sleeping eight hours. And the reason I'm bringing this up is because I think we were contemplating that. We were like, “Oh, so maybe this is a good thing.” It's not an ideal situation. That situation would be if you were sleeping like-- if it was like a 12-hour night and you're waking up in the middle. I think our original answer still stands about that schedule.

Gin Stephens: Because they slept from dark to dark. That was the difference. Those people were sleeping from dark to dark and that was too much sleep.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, probably.

Gin Stephens: So, they would wake up in the middle and then have their second half of the--

Melanie Avalon: That makes sense.

Gin Stephens: But you know what, my body is still tuned to that. I swear, I could live that way because as soon as it starts to get dark, I want to go to bed. I don't care if that's 9:30 at night or 5:30 at night. If it's dark, I want to get into bed. I probably should start just doing that. Go to bed, wake up in the middle of the night, get up--

Melanie Avalon: [laughs]

Gin Stephens: --do some stuff, go back to bed. I think that might be my natural-- [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Let us know how that goes.

Gin Stephens: Might be my natural way of being.

Melanie Avalon: I might still be awake in that time when you wake up because you would go to bed-- so like when does it get dark? You would go to bed at like?

Gin Stephens: 5:00, if it's the wintertime.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, so you would sleep from 5:00 to like?

Gin Stephens: 11:00.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, and then you could wake up and then we could hang out.

Gin Stephens: And then, have my second night sleep.

Melanie Avalon: And then, we could both go back to bed at the same time.

Gin Stephens: I swear, I would probably feel great doing that.

Melanie Avalon: We could do the podcast then, in the middle of the night!

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I'd have to have an earlier window, I'd have to shift it.

Melanie Avalon: So, yeah.

Gin Stephens: Coming to you from Gin's biphasic sleep!

Melanie Avalon: And my normal sleep and my normal awake. That's so funny. But sleep is huge. And I will do a quick plug for Dr. Parsley’s Sleep Remedy. They have an unflavored version of it that is fast friendly, and it basically has all of the substrates that your brain naturally needs to fall asleep. So, it's not a pharmaceutical, doesn't knock you out or affect your sleep quality. It just makes your brain naturally fall asleep. I think you can get it for 10% off at sleepremedy.com/melanieavalon.

Gin Stephens: And the version of it that I have is a capsule.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's a capsule. They have drinks as well. So, you can get it for 10% off at melanieavalon.com/sleepremedy with the coupon, MelanieAvalon. And then, yeah, they do have the drinks as well. And they're coming out with a kid's formulation soon. So, that's pretty exciting. But, yeah, sleep is super important. I feel I keep reading everywhere that, out of everything honestly, diet, lifestyle, exercise, sleep, sleep is probably the most important. It's hard to say one's more important than the other.

Gin Stephens: But sleep is so key. Like fasting is so good for us because it's healing, sleep is where, I don’t know it's where our brains are healing. Not sleeping is like eating all the time as far as the effects it has. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: It's where so many key processes happen that keep you functional okay and alive, and everything important really seems to happen while you're sleeping.

Gin Stephens: I'm realizing the importance of keeping it so dark. Now, we're getting ready to take another step in the bedroom. I mentioned recently how stupid it was that I didn't realize that our shades needed to be and our curtains need to be drawn. And that made a huge difference. But now, the light from the little satellite TV--

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, if there's just one little light, it's huge.

Gin Stephens: Well, I recently took away the alarm clock light because we had the dimmest one you could get. I would like someone to invent-- I've just invented it. But someone else can invent it and then just send me one. A clock that goes dark. I want to have be able to look over and see what time it is only if it is after 5:30 in the morning. I don't want to roll over and see that it's 2:00 AM. I want it to automatically be dark.

Melanie Avalon: I wonder if that exists, do you think it does?

Gin Stephens: I couldn't find one. I looked. I want it to automatically be dark. I've seen something like that for kids where they show a time when it's okay to get up, like you get a green light if it's okay to get up. But I want zero light, I don't want to roll over and see that it's 1:30 and then it's 3:00, and then it's 3:30.

Melanie Avalon: What if you do on that you've like-- it's always dark, but touching it makes it light up?

Gin Stephens: I don't want to touch anything. My phone does that. I can pick my phone up and look at the time. But I want it to just come on at 5:30 in the morning, then I can see its time and be completely dark after that. But now, since I turned the clock off, now, I'm noticing the satellite light is so bright. I think we're going to change our TV providers, so it's darker, and just go with a Hulu kind of streaming.

Melanie Avalon: Or you could just not have your TV in the bedroom.

Gin Stephens: Well, with that, my husband likes to watch TV before going to sleep at night. And I actually fall asleep with him watching TV, then he turns the TV off. So, that works really well. But he likes to wind down with that TV, and I fall right to sleep with the TV on while he's watching TV. And then, he turns it off.

Melanie Avalon: I mean I obviously have been saying from day one, like how important it is to be like all blackout. But I really, really, really realized the importance of that recently because when I had the surgery on my face, and I still can't wear-- so we're not sponsored by BLUblox today, but we talk about BLUblox blue light blocking glasses a lot. And they have a Sleep Remedy Mask, I think is what it's called. And it's the only mask I've had that completely blocks out like all light. It's incredible. And it doesn't touch your eyes. It's the most brilliant engineering.

Gin Stephens: It's like cups over your eyes. I cannot sleep with something around my head. I wake up in the middle of night and rip it off my head. I don't like hats. I don't like headbands. I don't like hair clothes. I can't wear my hair in a ponytail. I've got a head thing. I don't wear sunglasses. I can't wear anything on my face. I wear my blue blockers when watching TV, but I can only handle it for a short period of time.

Melanie Avalon: Well, for those who can handle it.

Gin Stephens: I'm a special snowflake.

Melanie Avalon: For those who can handle it. Yeah, it's what Gin said. There's no pressure on your eyes at all. It's soft and goes around your eyes and you can completely open your eyes when it's on, and it's completely blackout.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the ones I had were like that, but I just couldn't have it on my head.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so I couldn't wear them for quite a while after the surgery. And literally the first day, I could wear it again, I slept through the night for the first time in a long time, at least since the surgery and I was like, "Wow, this is huge." I have the really intense hotel blackout curtains, but there is a tiny bit of light that comes in that I can't quite get rid of.

Gin Stephens: Or under the door of our bedroom. We accidentally left the lights on in the living room. I guess I thought Chad was turning them off, he thought I was. We just had the door closed. And I woke up in the middle of the night. I think I thought it was sunrise coming under the door. But it was the lights in the living room. It is huge, my brain really, yep, I need to have it dark. So, I'm working on it, changing my TV provider to make it darker. But getting rid of the alarm clock made a huge difference, completely, but then I could see the other lights, but sleep is really that important.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it is. So resources for listeners, Sleep Remedy. That's at melanieavalon.com/sleepremedy with the coupon, MelanieAvalon. And for BLUblox, if you like the blue light blocking glasses or the Sleep REMedy Mask, they're two completely different companies but they both use the word sleep and remedy in the title, that is at blublox.com and the coupon, IFPODCAST, gets you, I think 10-- it might be 15%, it's 10% or 15% off. For everything that you buy there, they donate need a pair of glasses to somebody in need, which is pretty nifty. So, shall we jump into our questions?

Gin Stephens: Yes. We have a question from Megan. And the subject is "Iced Coffee Versus Hot Coffee." “Hi, M&G.”

Melanie Avalon: Oh, it's a new one.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. M for Melanie, G for Gin, in case people thought, they're like, “What's M&G?” Emoji.

Melanie Avalon: Like in the alphabet, elemenopee.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. There you go. “Love your work. I'm curious about whether you could offer some insight into black coffee served hot versus iced. I noticed that iced coffee, both cold brew and otherwise, makes me nauseous. I have tried making it myself and I've ordered it from multiple places. Don't worry, always black. But I really noticed I'm nauseous for it.” I can't say that word nauseous is really how you say it, but I always read it wrong. Naa-shus, nau-shus. “I have never had a problem with hot coffee. Thanks for your thoughts.”

Melanie Avalon: Well, Megan, thank you for your question. So, my initial thoughts are that warm things, they stimulate digestion. Basically, cold can be a shock to your system. And that's really the only thing I can think of. I know it's not much help.

Gin Stephens: Well, I had a theory and it's not true.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, really? What was your theory?

Gin Stephens: I feel nauseated if I have tea on an empty stomach. I've heard people say it's the tannins in the tea. And coffee has tannins as well. So, my theory was that perhaps iced coffee had more tannins than the hot, but that is not true. Cold brew has fewer tannins than hot brew. So, my theory was nothing. Yes, fewer tannins. And really, that makes sense because the tannins probably add to the bitterness and we know that cold brew takes out some of the bitterness. So now, my theory, I understand why I was wrong.

Melanie Avalon: So, you learned something.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I would just stick to the hot coffee. I don't know why.

Melanie Avalon: I guess the question would be, do other cold drinks make you nauseous? If any cold drink makes you nauseous, then it's the temperature, it's the cold. If they don't--

Gin Stephens: Then we got nothing.

Melanie Avalon: --then there's something-- and then some combination of the cold and the coffee.

Gin Stephens: I can think of one thing that is possible. I've talked before about how Nitro cold brew doesn't work for me because my brain perceives it as sweet. Maybe the cold brew is being perceived by your brain as sweet and you're having a blood sugar crash making you nauseous. I don't know. That's a bit of a stretch.

Melanie Avalon: I think it might involve the vagus nerve, probably. Megan, check out my interview that I did on the vagus nerve at melanieavalon.com/vagusnerve with Ami Brannon who's the creator of a company called Xen by Neuvana. They make a vagus nerve toning device, but the vagus nerve, it's also called the wandering nerve and it's this cranial nerve that extends to every single system in our body with the exception of our thyroid and adrenals, I believe. But it's super, super involved in digestion and it's interpreting things like temperature, food digestion, and it's attached directly to the brain. So, it's the reason that how anxiety or mood or all of this stuff so intensely affects our digestion. A lot of it goes back to that. And it's also involved in things like fainting, which is not different-- not the same thing as s being nauseated, but I would bet at the vagus nerve thing being activated by temperature, that would just be my guess.

Something you could try would be doing activities to "tone" your vagus nerve or tried the Zen by Neuvana device and see if that affects how you respond to the coffee if you're that-- if you're really invested. Fun times.

Gin Stephens: All right.

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All right, now back to the show.

The next question comes from Paula. The subject is "IF." Paula says, “I'm curious why intermittent fasting has very little impact on my weight. I do 16 hours' fast every day with calorie and carbohydrate restriction. It's not easy. I'm ravenous all the time.” She says, “I don't have energy and I feel depressed.” Thank you, Paula.

Gin Stephens: Well, there's two pieces of information I wish I knew. One, how long has she been doing this? That's so key because let's just forget about the part that I'm going to talk about in a minute, the calorie and carbohydrate restriction, pretend she didn't say that. And all she said was 16 hours is not working for her because she's not losing weight. It's not easy, she's hungry. If she's early in, then clearly, she's not fat adapted because that's how you feel before you're fat adapted. And 16 hours may not be enough fasting for people to become fat-adapted if they are eating a lot during their eight-hour eating window. So, you could do 16-hour fast every single day, never become fat-adapted and then, your fast is going to be harder. Because the reason my fast is easy, is because my body has flipped that metabolic switch. So, in Fast. Feast. Repeat., I really go into details about this. Look for that chapter in Fast. Feast. Repeat.

Now, Paula gives us a little bit of information there that she is also doing calorie and carbohydrate restriction. So, I think Paula is going through what would happen with someone on a low-calorie diet. She's not fasting long enough really with 16 hours to really get that metabolic boost from really tapping into fat stores efficiently. But then, she's not fueling up very well because she's doing calorie restriction during the feeding time. So, what I would recommend, Paula, first of all, I would maybe have a few refeed days, just no fasting, just eat. Because you should not be feeling ravenous, you should not be depressed, you should not have low energy. Those are all things-- being ravenous all the time, having no energy, feeling depressed, that's how the guys felt when they were going through the Minnesota Starvation Experiment when they were not well fueled. So, those are all key signs of overdieting. So, stop. Give yourself a week, two weeks, just don't count anything, don't fast, just eat, I don't know. You should want to get your body feeling it's feeling good again. Don't weigh yourself in that time.

Then, you might want to try-- maybe read the 28-Day FAST Start on Fast. Feast. Repeat and then ease yourself in. I would do the ease-in approach, take it gentle. You do not want to do calorie and carbohydrate restriction at the same time. I wouldn't recommend anybody do fasting and then also trying to do really low-calorie dieting at the same time, it's fast, feast, repeat. Not fast, low-calorie diet, repeat. We want our bodies to feel well fed, we want to be well nourished. Once you get past the adjustment phase, and you know your body is fat adapted, if you ever start feeling ravenous all the time, your energy is low and you're depressed, that's a sign that what you're doing is really, really wrong for your body. Also, carbohydrate restriction can lead to depression for some people. Carbohydrates, our brain serotonin, I read a book. Did you ever read Potatoes Not Prozac, Melanie? Have you ever heard of that book?

Melanie Avalon: I've heard of it. I haven't read it.

Gin Stephens: I might have mentioned it. I'm not sure. I can't remember the credentials of the person who wrote it. Maybe she was a psychiatrist. I can't remember, it's been a long time. She talked about having a hit of carbs, like a potato, at night before you go to bed and that really helped with mood. So, that could be a factor right there as well. What do you think, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: You basically hit on all of it. I was zoning in on the fasting, the calorie, and the carb restriction. All of that at the same time is not the game plan to take, especially when you're first starting intermittent fasting.

Gin Stephens: But we don't know she might have been doing this a long time, in which case her body is really fighting back.

Melanie Avalon: True. Very true. Yeah, because it's so key. One of the things that makes intermittent fasting so magical is that when you have the feasting period, that's sending all of the signals to your body that make the fast in a way work even better because you need that feast period to send those signals to start the repair processes, start the growth and recovery, and make the body not feel it's in a state of perpetual starvation. So, then it's more willing in a way to enter the fasted state when you do fast, because it's not-- what's the word when anthropomorphizing? I'm giving--

Gin Stephens: Anthropomorphism.

Melanie Avalon: I'm doing that right now, even though it is your body, but maybe somebody is following who's listening to me right now. So, then your body enters the fast. If you don't have that feasting period, it's going to think that it's in a perpetual state of starvation. And so, the fast metabolism is going to be massively downregulated, you're going to feel starving, you're going to feel ravenous, it's really, really important to have that feasting period. I mentioned it last time, I'm reading Joel Greene's The Immunity Code, which is just blowing my mind, blowing my mind! But he talks a lot about this as well. I like Gin's idea about having some refeed days, and then reevaluating your whole plan about all this. Ironically, maybe fasting longer, but when the eating window--

Gin Stephens: Alternate daily fasting.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Like a 36:12.

Melanie Avalon: I was going to suggest rather than start jumping into that, because I even get freaked out by that, and I've been fasting for a long time. And that's just me, I know some people do really well with it. I was saying, I feel like the first step would just be maybe fasting longer and not restricting calories in your window.

Gin Stephens: What do you mean by fasting longer? That's what I'm confused by.

Melanie Avalon: Instead of a 16-hour fast--

Gin Stephens: Oh, okay. I get it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so maybe doing a one meal a day, or feeling free to fast longer than 16 hours, so maybe fasting 18, 20 hours. But then, when you eat, no restriction, carb restriction maybe if those are the macros that your body does well on, but definitely not the calorie restriction.

Gin Stephens: And it really may not be. There's a common thought in many intermittent fasting communities that if you're not also doing low carb with fasting, you're doing it wrong, but that's not true. Both Melanie and I have shown with our own personal experience that we do great with plenty of carbs and the intermittent fasting. So, if you definitely don't do well with carbs, that's one thing, but if you just are avoiding carbs, because you think you should, that's a whole different thing.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. 100%.

Gin Stephens: I've got one of my moderator friends who was low carb for years and years and years and years and struggled, struggled, struggled. Before she was a moderator, she was just a person in the group and I gave her the advice, I'm like, “Well, then try carbs, experiment with carbs.” And she thought I was crazy. She's like, “Everybody knows low carb is 'better' for weight loss.” But she added carbs back, and then went on to get to her ideal weight very easily.

Melanie Avalon: 100%. Definitely check out the interview, and I'm not completely saying to do the diet they follow. But if you want more about the science of all of that, check out my interview that I did with Cyrus and Robbie who wrote Mastering Diabetes. It's a mind-blowing episode. It's at melanieavalon.com/masteringdiabetes. I know I told you, Gin, but I don't know if I said on the podcast that I'm bringing on Dr. Doug Graham, who wrote The 80/10/10 Diet. I told you that, right?

Gin Stephens: I can't remember.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really excited!

Gin Stephens: What are his 80/10/10?

Melanie Avalon: 80/10/10 is the macros that are 80% carbs, 10% protein, 10% fat.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I could not do that diet. I could not eat that way. No, no, no.

Melanie Avalon: And he's fruitarian, mostly.

Gin Stephens: I need fat. I need fat.

Melanie Avalon: I need protein. Actually, our next question is about this a little bit.

Gin Stephens: I need protein too, but less protein. I need adequate protein. Someone was asking about this today. I'm sure we'll get to that with the protein question, but my body lets me know when I need more protein.

Melanie Avalon: Me too.

Gin Stephens: And I really need starchy carbs. Yesterday, I opened my window with this veggie bowl, this harvest bowl, it was called from this company, I was trying their food, it was delicious. But I was so unsatisfied. It was a giant bowl of food. It was like Brussel sprouts and I don't even know and all of these great veggies, and then I was still starving. And then, I had a bowl of oatmeal and then I felt better. I've got to have starchy carbs.

Melanie Avalon: I do find starchy carbs really satiating, I just don't like the way they feel in my body. I don't feel well.

Gin Stephens: I feel fabulous after I eat starchy carbs. If I don't eat starchy carbs, I don't feel well, that is 100% true. That veggie bowl, it was a whole giant bowl of food, I ate the whole thing. And then, I was like, “I am still hungry.” So, I've got to have beans or something with grains, I have to. A potato.

Melanie Avalon: If I don't eat lots of protein, I don't feel full. But what I'm wondering-- so Dr. Doug Graham is pretty controversial, but reason I'm so excited about bringing him on is because I feel my show has been very--

Gin Stephens: Like keto, meat focused?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I mean, it's featured a lot of people in that world and I haven't had much on the flip side. I've had a few. But he's pretty much as far as you can go.

Gin Stephens: That's pretty extreme. 80/10/10 is very, very-- yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I'm so excited to bring him on!

Gin Stephens: I would never stop eating if I was trying to do that because I don't get the stop eating signal.

Melanie Avalon: There was a period of time where I was eating basically, really, really high fruit, which I'm still trying to get back to, but really, really high fruit, really high protein. I could have days on occasion where I did just fruit. I would do that occasionally for my one-meal day. When I would do that, the next day, my body would feel so like-- I don't know how to describe it, light and airy, and my eyes would be-- all inflammation will be gone. My eyes would be shining white. I just felt radiating. But I would be craving protein like none other that night. But I'm really on the fence. All the other research I've run the other side really, really seems to be in support of moderate or higher protein diets.

Gin Stephens: Well, the research on my body is, I need carbs, I need fat, and adequate protein. But my body tells me. Sometimes I'm like, “I don't want any meat. I don't want any meat. I'm just not going to have any today.” And then, other days, I'm like, “I really need to eat some meat today.”

Melanie Avalon: I crave meat so much. I'm actually pretty excited-- I haven't told you this yet, Gin, because I still have a lot of lingering things I'm trying to tackle health-wise and I got introduced to a doctor who is apparently the doctor to a lot of people in my sphere. All I've had so far is a brief consult intake with him, but I'm pretty excited because he's making me reevaluate a lot of stuff. He already said iron for example is never an iron issue, it's a copper issue. I was like, “What?” And he doesn't have any one dogma about any one thing. So, I'm pretty excited. We'll see how it goes. If it goes well, I'm going to bring him on the show as well. We had an intake. He doesn't like the whole biohacking concept or all of these different authors and books and ideas. So, I'm going to bring them on for an anti-biohacking episode to dismantle biohacking. I'm really excited.

Gin Stephens: To me, maybe I don't understand biohacking, okay, so tell me if I'm wrong. To me, biohacking is tweaking anything about what you do with your life or your body to maximize how you feel and your health, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And this is what it comes down to because I actually had this conversation with two different people and it was the exact same conversation and I had my idea and they had their idea of what it was, and they were very much anti-biohacking because of the definitions, and it's so interesting how semantics are involved in.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. Semantics are huge.

Melanie Avalon: I think that was the conclusion. I literally got in an argument-- I don't really get in arguments, but I got into sort of argument about it and at the end, we were just like, “Semantics.” We can't really go beyond this because my definition of biohacking is-- in our modern world using tools, devices, supplements, things that we-- because some people say fasting is biohacking or--

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Putting on your blue blockers.

Melanie Avalon: I don't think fasting is biohacking because that's just something we do.

Gin Stephens: No, I think it is. I consider it a biohack.

Melanie Avalon: I consider the biohacks things that are using-- like I just said, devices, supplements, things we would not naturally be-- living our normal life, we would not be able to do unless we consciously secured them and implemented them into our routine. And then by using them, they hack our environment, they hack our bodies to either potentially function better or perform better. So, I consider biohacks, things like blue light blocking glasses, because the non-biohacking form of that would be you just turn off the lights and go to bed. Or like Joovv red light, the non-biohack version would be go outside and see the red light, but even then, you can't get in the concentrated form.

Gin Stephens: Okay, intermittent fasting is a biohack, by your definition, let me explain because in the past, they weren't able to eat around the clock because food was not available around the clock. But now, food is available around the clock. So, we have to biohack by having time-restricted eating windows.

Melanie Avalon: But anybody can fast, and our bodies can fast, but you don't have to go buy something to fast.

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't think the biohack means you have to buy something.

Melanie Avalon: It's a thing that you go get and implement into your life that would make your body potentially better because I wouldn't consider following a low-carb diet biohacking. But I think if you consider fasting biohacking, you could consider that biohacking. But the bristling comes in, I guess, with the two conversations I've had with people who get very upset by it, they think it is pretentious because it's assuming that-- it was a few things, it's assuming that we know better than our bodies and we think that we can bring these devices or bring these things in and make our bodies do better than they would just naturally be able to do from life, which I was saying, “Well, you could extend that same argument to medicine and say medicine is us trying to do that.” That was the main idea, was that it was pretentious or thinking that we know better than our bodies.

Gin Stephens: Here's a definition I just found. I think this is a pretty good one. The attempt to manipulate your brain and body in order to optimize performance outside the realm of traditional medicine. See, that's why I think that intermittent fasting--

Melanie Avalon: Which, fasting is in traditional medicine, like--

Gin Stephens: Okay, I don't think that they're talking about ancient Chinese medicine or something. I think they're talking about go to the doc-in-the-box kind of medicine traditional. Go to your practitioner who's just practicing medicine like they have for the past 20 years. That definition of traditional medicine is not asking Aristotle or something. Anyway, I definitely think fasting is biohacking. I think that carnivore is a biohack and I think that 80/10/10 sounds like a biohack. All that does.

Melanie Avalon: It's interesting, though. I mean, a lot of people agree with you, because I'll do that poll a lot. I should do it now in my group, which everybody should join, IF Biohackers, speaking of, that's what it's called, IF Biohackers. I will often ask, “What's your favorite biohack?” And a lot of people say fasting. I wouldn't consider cold-- Okay, like cold exposure, I wouldn't consider going out--

Gin Stephens: That's a biohack. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Here's how I think about it. I wouldn't really consider like knowing, "Oh, if I go outside in the winter, it's going to be good for my body, it's going to activate sirtuins. It's going to have longevity-boosting benefits," can do all these things. I think just going out in the cold and experiencing that, I wouldn't consider that biohacking, but I would consider it biohacking if I buy a chest freezer, fill it with ice, and do an ice bath. Then, I would consider biohacking because I'm doing this, I'm creating this thing that is upgrading my--

Gin Stephens: But you could do that, absolutely, just like outside in the-- you don't need to buy something to do it.

Melanie Avalon: It's like a kid walking outside and--

Gin Stephens: I think the key for biohacking is that it's purposeful for a goal of your body. Like a kid who's outside playing in the snow doesn't know that there are benefits associated with that, but if you're like, “I'm going to go outside and get a lot of cold therapy because I'm hacking my body,” that is what by definition makes it biohacking. The purposeful pursuit of it, for the purpose of changing your body.

Melanie Avalon: But people do that following a diet, and I don't consider diets biohacking. Like paleo, I don't consider--

Gin Stephens: If you were doing a diet that you-- joined Weight Watchers or something, I wouldn't call that a biohack. But if you read about the science of calorie restriction, and the scientists who-- they eat like two almonds and one cashew, that calorie restriction is the biohack.

Melanie Avalon: Why? Why is one and not the other?

Gin Stephens: I really think the intent is the goal of it. I'm talking about Calorie Restriction, capital C, capital R, you know what I'm talking about, Melanie, we've talked about this before, that the science of calorie restriction for longevity because it's purposeful. You're like, “I am going to hack my body to live to be 120 by having this calorie restriction.” Versus somebody who's like, “I'm joining Weight Watchers because I want to lose weight.” That's totally different than the idea of doing calorie restriction for the longevity purpose and it's very intense. It's like more intense.

Melanie Avalon: So, here's a question. I have my Apollo Neuro device which I would hands down consider biohacking. It's one of my favorite devices on the planet. Listeners, if you want it, feel like I mentioned so many things this episode, but it's at melanieavalon.com/apollo, that's the interview. Melanieavalon.com/apolloneuro is to buy it and you get $50 off of that link. But it uses soundwave therapy. So, you put it on, and it activates a state in your body that is activated by human touch to have like a relaxing effect on the body. I definitely consider that biohacking. What if you go get a massage and you get it with the intent of stimulating human touch, so now is getting that massage biohacking?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, in that case, it would be.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. See, I would not consider that biohacking,

Gin Stephens: If you are attempting to manipulate your brain and body in order to optimize your performance-- If you're like, “Oh, I'm going to get a massage. I like that.” But if you're like, "I am going to get this special massage. I'm going to do this because of this, this, this,” I think it can be a biohack. I'm drinking a mug of hot water because I like it. But if I read something that said, “Having a mug of hot water does this, this, this for your body,” suddenly I'm using it as a biohack versus I'm just drinking hot water. I think it's the intent. I don't know, maybe people think I'm crazy. But drinking hot water just because I'm cold, it makes me happy is different than if Wim Hof said, “If you have a mug of hot water, it does this for your body,” and now, I'm purposefully adding that to my day for this biohack purpose.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm open to that.

Gin Stephens: Okay. [laughs] That's what I've always thought of. So, that's why intermittent fasting works for me. Grandma who just naturally ate that way, I don't think she was biohacking. She just naturally ate that way. Whereas those of us who are like, “I am doing intermittent fasting for health and longevity,” I think it becomes a biohack.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think one of the problems is just-- it goes back to semantics. There's not really one accepted definition.

Gin Stephens: Well, some people don't think that time-restricted eating is fasting. A lot of it is semantics. We can get too caught up in that. But anyway, so your doctor doesn't like the word biohacking.

Melanie Avalon: Oh yeah, no. But it was crazy because I did the intake call, which was like 30 minutes, and we literally talked an hour and a half. And at the end, I was like, “We should have recorded this. This could have been an episode.” I'm really excited though. Actually, I can say his name because he's been on shows, Dr. Anthony Beck. I was listening to him on Ben Greenfield recently.

Gin Stephens: Well, keep us posted.

Melanie Avalon: I shall.

Gin Stephens: All right. Flowing into Carolanne's question, "Determining adequate intake and IF/HGH," which would be human growth hormone. “After listening to Melanie's podcast with Dr. Gabrielle Lyon and your podcast.”

Melanie Avalon: I have not had a podcast with Dr. Gabrielle Lyon. So, I don't know who she's referring to. I just want to interject that but go ahead.

Gin Stephens: “And your podcast of September 7th, an issue I've been pondering for quite a long time has come to a head. It's not simple to present. But I'll start with the question. How much protein does one need if one is intermittent fasting?”

Melanie Avalon: I bet it was Cynthia Thurlow.

Gin Stephens: Okay. Did she talk about protein?

Melanie Avalon: She did. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Okay, that's got to be it. “Assuming a fasting window of at least 16 hours, how much daily/weekly protein should we be eating? Another question goes along with this before I even get to the issue of the impact of intermittent fasting on adequate protein intake, and that is, how do we determine how much protein to get? If it is grams per pound of bodyweight, is it the whole body or lean body weight? Then, what does lean body weight mean? Is it muscle tissue alone? Or does it mean muscle and bone tissue? Muscle, bone, organ tissue or everything but fat tissue?” Wait, Carolanne, your question is making me crazy. I love you, but-- [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: This is a question that Melanie would ask.

Gin Stephens: Melanie loves this question. And I'm like, “Eat your food.”

Melanie Avalon: This is literally like me.

Gin Stephens: Eat your food, stop eating your food. Boom. Okay, sorry. All right, Carolanne. I love you anyway. All right. Then, to make it even harder, “How do we know what those weights are? And of course, outside of professional health methods of measuring our body weight, that seems to leave only a scale that is able to measure all of that. Which brings up another question, how accurate are those scales?

Now, to the issue of the impact of intermittent fasting on how much protein to consume, I often hear the great advice to eat to satiety each day, assuming a refeeding that does not limit calories in order to lose weight. And that statement seems to be an implicit belief that doing that will provide quite adequately for the body's needs. And that mainly seems to be as far as I understand it, due to the stimulation of growth hormone due mainly to autophagy.” And I also think I'm just going to interject here real quick, Carolanne, I wouldn't say it's the stimulation of human growth hormone due to autophagy but the recycling of protein due to autophagy. Is that what you think she's asking you, Melanie? The protein for your body's needs, that's because it's recycling it due to autophagy. She's saying stimulation of human growth hormone, that's the rebuilding phase. Autophagy is the breaking down phase.

Melanie Avalon: When you're fasting, human growth hormone is going up.

Gin Stephens: Right. But my point is that's not because of autophagy making human growth hormone go up. I think she's talking about the recycling of protein due to autophagy. Anyway, I'm going to keep going. That's where we have our protein needs met during the fast because our bodies are literally recycling it. The human growth hormone comes into play when you're rebuilding.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, so the human growth hormone is stimulated, it's going up while you're fasting. So then, when you start eating, it's really high and then you're at a prime state for growth.

Gin Stephens: And your body has recycled all those proteins during the fast and now your body can use those too. So, it's not just the protein you're eating, is what I'm trying to get across here. Yeah. You don't get all your protein just from protein that you take in through eating. She continues, “It is an uncomfortable place to be in. For me, it's really important that I make sure I get adequate nourishment so that my adrenals and thyroid can heal. When I began intermittent fasting in July of 2018, I already knew my adrenals weren't producing enough energy for me and doing fasting more than 14 to 15 hours was not the thing to do. I didn't know then that it was too stressful for my body. After listening to Dr. Lyon--”

Melanie Avalon: It was definitely Cynthia Thurlow.

Gin Stephens: She's actually not a doctor. She's a nurse practitioner. “I really got to wondering and having a lot of anxiety over how much protein should I be getting.” I'm going to stop right there again, and I have to interject this because 100 years ago, nobody had anxiety about this. They just ate their food. It's so interesting how we're like-- the more we know, the more we're learning, the more anxious we become. If you went back in time and said to somebody, they would look at you like you're crazy, that we're worried about-- Anyway, I'm just going on. We have knowledge overload. All right.

"So, I live a quiet lifestyle, low demand, because that's what I need to do right now, to lessen the stress in my life. I know these aren't simple questions, but I greatly respect the thoroughness of your research and your approach to difficult issues. And just to add here, because it's already way too long, and what will one more sentence be? Thank you immensely for keeping your podcast free of politics. It's like an oasis of peace and calm and encouragement. And I treasure it and you guys. With highest and warmest regards, Carol." Yep. Carol, you will never hear us talk about politics. Never.

Melanie Avalon: Nope.

Gin Stephens: Nope. We've never even talked about politics. Melanie and I have never talked about politics. We could be the complete opposite. We'll never know, and we're not going to tell you.

Melanie Avalon: We wouldn't even know. That’s so funny.

Gin Stephens: Not going to tell you because that's personal. All right, and it's irrelevant.

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And now back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: Well, thank you, Carolanne, for your question. Love it. Really appreciate it. And it flows perfectly with everything that we were talking about before so-- Oh, and yeah, it was definitely Cynthia Thurlow. And the reason-- I totally forgot. It's always interesting to see what resonates when I release an episode, like what part of the episode people really resonate with because for every episode, if you do join my Facebook group, IF Biohackers, there's an episode giveaway each time and to enter, all you do is comment on the post about the episode, something that you learned or what resonated with you. And when I released that episode with Cynthia, which was a few weeks ago, or maybe last week, everybody was like protein. I totally forgot that we talked about that because it was just a tiny bit of the whole conversation. But that's what really stuck out to people was because she was saying for women-- One of the reasons she advocates longer eating windows as she thinks for most women, it's almost near impossible to get enough protein.

My answer was, I'm definitely the exception, because it's shocking how much protein I eat in a one-meal-a-day situation. But, yeah, she was saying that for women, specifically, how important it was to get enough protein. As far as how much protein is enough, this is ironic-- I don't know. I was talking before about, one side of the camp of things people like Dr. Graham, fruitarians, the load protein camps, saying that all we need is like 10% of protein.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, there's actually a book called Proteinaholic that talks about that we're eating too much protein.

Melanie Avalon: I've also had James Clement on the show, and we talked about protein as well. I'm really, really fascinated by it because it is such a polarizing thing. On the one hand, we have people saying, “Oh, we're fine with 10%, that's actually ideal.” Then, on the other hand, we have people saying the complete opposite. Probably the episode I went deepest into protein would be the one I did with William Shewfelt and Ted Naiman. I think that's literally at melanieavalon.com/protein. So, people like Han[?], people like Robb Wolf, my recent episode with him, we talked about protein. They point out how direly important protein is, like a moderate, if not high protein intake for health, for our bodies, for satiety, for longevity.

Gin Stephens: Can I pop in a theory that I have?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: You know how we talk all the time about how we're all different when it comes to what foods work for us? I wonder if some of us are better at recycling protein, so we need to take in less. And so, we naturally gravitate towards eating less, and then we assume everyone should eat less, because that's how we feel great. Whereas the people like maybe, the people who feel best when they eat 90% protein, maybe their bodies aren't good at recycling protein, and they need to take in more.

Melanie Avalon: That's what I was going to ponder. So that and then I also wonder, though, how much of it is you and your genetics, your epigenetics. What are you thinking about is, reading this 80/10/10 book, and dancing around the communities and seeing what people say it's like, lot of people say that your body adapts. So, it starts working just fine on the lower protein intake. So, I don't know how much of it is genetic versus epigenetic from the diet that you're following for a certain period of time. All that said, I think there could be a case to be made for lower protein for longevity, especially while you're young. I'm not so much sure after you hit a certain age-- I think it's around 60 or so, I don't know the exact number, there's a point where low protein-- the relationship changes.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I've read that to you. I think Dr. Fung talks about that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, and it's pretty well established. Once you reach a certain age, you need more protein.

Gin Stephens: I really believe our bodies are going to tell us. I know how I feel like if I'm one day, I'm craving more protein and I look back and I think, “Yeah, I didn't really have much protein in the past few days.” And then, I'm like, “Now, I'm going to have this big piece of chicken.”

Melanie Avalon: The thing I wonder is, I've been so high protein for so long, I'm like, “What if my body is just-- that's what it's accustomed to?” But to answer her specific questions. The grams?

Gin Stephens: Oh, don't ask me. I don't know any of those recommendations because I would never be able to follow them.

Melanie Avalon: So, the official dietary recommendations are 0.36 grams per pound.

Gin Stephens: And who's that recommendation coming from?

Melanie Avalon: The dietary reference intake. Yeah, 0.8 grams per kilogram. What I see most in the communities that I-- is communitize in, a word? No-- that I live in.

Gin Stephens: You commune in them. You commune in those communities. I just made that up. I don't know if that's right. But you commune with them.

Melanie Avalon: I like going by what Siim Land talks about just if I have to pick one person, and William Shewfelt and Ted Naiman’s book. I don't have that book with me right now. I'm just looking at Siim Land’s book and he advocates 0.6 to 0.8 grams per pound of lean body mass on rest days, and 0.8 to 1.2 grams on workout days. That is often what I see because that averages to around one gram per pound of lean body mass. So, I'm just going to throw that out there as something to consider. And so, what that would look like would be-- because she asked how do you know what your lean body mass is? You can get it measured. A lot of gyms have machines that will measure your-- they'll show you your composition of everything. And you don't have to worry about tissue, muscle, bone, organ tissue, it's going to show you fat, muscle, and that's what you need to know. There are the scales, I don't know how accurate they are. I read things all over the board about them. Do you have thoughts about the accuracy of those scales?

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I've heard a lot of negatives about them because they work with bioimpedance. And a lot of it has to do with your body water and they all claim they're great, but they're really, I think, not all that great. I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: What I would advocate just to be safe is you could just go for around, and I know this seems like a lot-- But if even though I talked about the low protein before, I think if you're not purposely trying a low-protein diet for that reason, I would err on the side of more protein. I don't really measure or count or anything, I just do what Gin was saying. I eat to satiety, but you could aim for like a gram per-- I would say even like per normal body weight, in that ballpark. Especially if you're trying to like lose weight, maintain weight, have satiety, things like that, which I don't know that she necessarily was asking about that. But if that is the case, protein has the highest thermogenic effect of any food, although I don't know if alcohol might have more but of food. Meaning, you burn calories, just processing it. It's very satiating like I said, and it does support your muscle.

There's even been studies, and I think we've talked about them before, they have found studies where they didn't change exercise protocols-- I'm not saying that you can just eat like tons of protein and gain muscle, but they have found that, that overeating protein can lead to more muscle growth, even without necessarily doing a workout to create that, which is pretty shocking. She says she has a lot of anxiety over wondering about the protein. I think it all goes back to what Gin said in the beginning, try not to have the anxiety part of it. The fact that you're trying to get enough protein, I think, is a good thing. I think the problem-- a lot of people get overly focused on fat or carbs, they're not even thinking about the protein, so I feel you're one step ahead with all of that.

And it sounds you are pretty intuitive with your eating window. You said that you found originally that fasting for more than 14 to 15 hours wasn't working for you and you did realize it was too stressful for your body. So, it sounds like you're really in tune with your body. I would encourage you to eat protein to satiety. Out of curiosity, maybe you could eat to satiety for a while and then retroactively look at how much you ate and see if it does sort of line up to that one gram per pound. I'm saying normal weight because the recommendation is technically less, but yeah. Gin, do you have other thoughts?

Gin Stephens: Well, I kind of have already said mine during the-- while I was reading it. I just never want to stress about macros, or what I'm eating and even-- I talked about this on the podcast when I was doing the PREDICT 3, and I had to enter exactly what I was eating into the app. I wasn't even trying to eat to targets, I just had to put it in. That was too much for me. I was like, “I don't know, what am I eating? I don't know how to put this in.” I don't want to count, track, manage, measure, worry, do a math problem, I don't want to do that. In fact, I refuse to do that, ever again. I'm just going to eat food that is delicious.

Even when I was experimenting-- Melanie and I've talked about this, I was experimenting with eating less fat, just to see how it felt after reading Mastering Diabetes, and seeing their recommendations matched what that one DNA analysis told me, I was like, “Well, I'm just going to try it and see.” Even then, I couldn't count, I just had to eyeball it. So, I just never want to count anything again. I just want to eat food until I'm satisfied. I genuinely believe that our bodies are not going to let us be deficient in protein without sending us craving for more protein. I think that's one of those things we have that, that signal. Because just listening to my body and knowing how it varies from day to day, I get that signal very, very easily. I'll be like, "Ooh, I'm going to add an egg on top of this. I just feel like I'm craving it." Actually, that sounds really good, I'm thinking about having an egg when I open my window. I love to have some days eggs on toast to open my window. You would not have eggs or toast, would you?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, no. I would have the egg whites, and I might have egg yolk. I don't like having like them together. I might use the egg yolk as part of my supplement for a multivitamin-type thing with my food. Or I might have a lot of egg whites.

Gin Stephens: All right, I like a runny egg on top of toast. First, I put butter on the toast. Then, I put it in the toaster oven and toast it. And then, I fry up the little eggs till they're runny on the top. I'm really good at making fried eggs running on the top. Low and slow, that's the key. And then I get it all in there and let the egg run all over the toast, so it's drippy. Now I'm starving. I think I'm going to have that. What time is it? [laughs] But like I said, my body lets me know. So, I beg of you not to get all stressed out about that because that's not how we're meant to live.

Melanie Avalon: On the flipside, I do want to say though because I love everything you just said. And on top of that, that's a reframe I'm starting to do in my life, Gin.

Gin Stephens: What's that?

Melanie Avalon: Say somebody says something and you acknowledge to their point, and you're like that’s valid.

Gin Stephens: Right.

Melanie Avalon: Not making the conjunction that follows, but. Because if you say but, then it's like saying, “Oh, that's valid, but.” So, you have to say and. Everything that you said, and.

Gin Stephens: But. [laughs] Now, I'm going to know that's what you mean though.

Melanie Avalon: No, no! [laughs]

Gin Stephens: It's okay to disagree. That's okay.

Melanie Avalon: No. That's the thing, though. That’s the reason I said this, just now is I agree. I do agree with what you said.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: And on top of that, I think there's some people, they do like tracking and measuring and I just want to say that if they do like it, I think that's okay, too.

Gin Stephens: Oh, definitely. If you'd love it and want to, yes. Oh, yeah. I'm not saying that you can't if you'd love it. But Carolanne sounds a little stressed out about it, almost it's making it worse. I'm going to weigh myself, but what weight do I use? And what scale should I be on? And how do I calculate my muscle mass? And I really think that it doesn't sound like something that's enjoyable. It sounds like something that's stressing you out.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, exactly.

Gin Stephens: So, yeah, you're right though. If someone loves to do that, and they're biohacking through math of-- you would say that's not biohacking, but if that's what you want to do, and it feels good and you love doing it, then do that. But I don't. I'm never going to do it again. Never again. I whispered that into the microphone.

Melanie Avalon: Both are okay.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, they are.

Melanie Avalon: In our nonpolitic world of ands.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: All-inclusive.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Any definitions of biohacking, welcome.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Do it or not. What's a biohack for me might not be one for you. I'm not getting in a chest freezer. But I might go outside without my coat to check the mail and think, “Look, I'm biohacking! I'm biohacking!” I got cold on purpose, right?

Melanie Avalon: I feel like a cold shower might be on the fence for biohacking.

Gin Stephens: Oh no, that's a biohack, I'm sorry. But I don't agree with that.

Melanie Avalon: Actually, I would consider it a biohack because it's like using technology to--

Gin Stephens: Exactly. See, that's a biohack. Speaking of which my upstairs bathroom, we can end on this note-- we have plumbing in the upstairs bathroom.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, congratulations.

Gin Stephens: The only thing we don't have now is like you could actually go up there and take a shower, brush your teeth, and use the bathroom. But what you can't do is have lighting, unfortunately. We're waiting on the electrician. In the meantime, we thought it would be a great idea to also have them redo all the faucets and fixtures in our master bath. So, they came on Thursday and I'm like, “This is great. They're going to be done.” Because they tore our bathroom over-- this is our master bath, they tore it apart a couple months ago because it was dripping. And then they had to cut out the part of the wall. I mean, it's dramatic. So, I haven't been able to use my master bathroom shower since, I don't know, July. Here it is September. I've been walking across the house to the other bathroom. So, they came on Thursday, and I was so excited. But, oh my Lord, the amount of plumbing they've needed to do to just to switch out the faucets on our tub and our shower and our two sinks. It's very elaborate. Plumbing is not easy. They're still not done. Two guys were here all day on Thursday. One guy was here half the day on Friday, and everything's still torn apart.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like plumbers are people that like-- there are few professions in this world that you're just so grateful for them. I'm just really grateful for plumbers.

Gin Stephens: I'm grateful for all the professions that do things I don't know how to do. Plumbers are one of them. But watching them do it is-- it's a lot of work. It's hard. But also, I don't know what's up with the plumbing industry, but if anyone's in the industry, y'all are ridiculous because here's what I'm talking about. Did you know the fixtures are not interchangeable? You just want to change things out, you can't. No, I can't just get a different brand shower handle. They have to cut the whole fitting out of the wall to replace it. Moral of the story is, don't buy fancy plumbing fixtures. Do not get fancy high-end crazy faucets because then when you need to get a new one because something's wrong with it, they're going to have to cut holes in your wall and replace the inside parts. Everything should just be universal. It's 2020. Hello.

Melanie Avalon: Well, on that note.

Gin Stephens: Don't you think it should be universal?

Melanie Avalon: I think they should be switch-outable universally, yes.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. At this point, it should not be that hard, that they should not have to cut the hole out of the wall in order to put in a new shower thing. Anyway, one day, we will have all the working bathrooms and I'm going to use them all and there will be a nice warm shower in all of them. No cold showers.

Melanie Avalon: If I'm ever a guest at your household, I'll take a cold shower.

Gin Stephens: You can take as cold of a shower you want to.

Melanie Avalon: I love my cold showers.

Gin Stephens: That is okay. I don't have a freezer for you, but we could fill my bathtub up with cold water. I got new faucets and they're beautiful. They just aren't attached yet. You can't actually put water in my tub because it's not attached. The faucets are lovely. They just don't work yet.

Melanie Avalon: Do you like baths?

Gin Stephens: I love baths. I'm a bath taker. I heard Oprah one time say-- this was in the 90s when her show was on every day, when she had the afternoon show on NBC or whatever it was. I watched it every day. And one time, someone asked her what her hobby was, and she said bathing and I'm like, “I get it. I get it.” Getting in the tub with a book, staying there for three hours, that's me.

Melanie Avalon: Maybe if it's an ice bath, yeah.

Gin Stephens: No, no. Hot. It's got to be hot.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, this has been wonderful. For listeners, I feel like we talked about so many things. The show notes for today's episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode184. If you'd like to submit your own questions for the podcast, directly email questions@ifpodcast.com. Or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can get all the things that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. You can follow me, I'm @MelanieAvalon. Gin is @GinStephens, and I think that is it. Anything else from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: Nope. I think I said a lot of things but I'm waiting for the plumbing industry. Give me a call. We can have a chat.

Melanie Avalon: Let me know if that transpires.

Gin Stephens: Really though, my advice for people really is, keep it simple and pick a brand. The plumbers in Augusta, for whatever reason, they love Delta. Pick a brand and stick to it.

Melanie Avalon: You're like really my advice is for listeners to-- I was like, “Is it going to be a fasting thing? Or is it going to be about the plumbers?”

Gin Stephens: It's plumbing because, right now, I'm living it. Don't buy fancy plumbing fixtures!

Melanie Avalon: And don’t let mold be in your apartment.

Gin Stephens: Either one, they're both bad.

Melanie Avalon: This is true.

Gin Stephens: If you buy fancy plumbing fixtures and they leak, you're going to have mold, and then you can't switch them out because it's too hard.

Melanie Avalon: That's a problem. Now, I'm invested. Now, Melanie is invested. Okay.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. See, that was what was happening. Ours were dripping and you couldn't buy replacement parts because first of all, you couldn't tell what brand they were because they're so fancy. People that had our house before us, they were fancy people, and they bought fancy things. And so, we're like, “We're buying Delta, and they're going to work and if they don't, we'll just get a new one.” And the plumbers are like, thumbs up on that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm invested now.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

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.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

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

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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! 

 

 

Oct 18

Episode 183: Seasonal Candles, Scented Lotions, Food Smells, Anticipation of Eating, Shift Workers, Biphasic Sleep And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

 Subscribe For Updates HERE!

Welcome to Episode 183 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! Take Charge Of Your Digestion With Masszymes - The Most Powerful Enzyme Support Available! Go To Bioptimizers.com/IFPodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - BIOPTIMIZERS: Go To Bioptimizers.com/IFPodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

3:50 - 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!

The Immunity Code: The New Paradigm for Immune Centric Health and Radical Anti-Aging (Joel Greene)

15:05 - Listener Feedback: Deb - Terminology

24:20 - BUTCHERBOX: Go To Butcherbox.com/IFPodcast And Get 2 Free Lobster Tails And 2 Free Filet Mignon In Your First Box!

28:30 - Listener Q&A: Margaret - Going Overboard? Worried About Scented Candles And Lotions

26:40 - Listener Q&A: Ashley - Fall Candles

Sense of Smell as the Central Driver of Pavlovian Appetite Behavior in Mammals

The role of insulin sensitivity and intranasally applied insulin on olfactory perception

Food odors trigger an endocrine response that affects food ingestion and metabolism

42:30 - BLUBLOX: Go To BluBlox.com And Use The Code ifpodcast For 15% Off!

45:05 - Listener Q&A: Barbora - The Perfect Pair

56:20 - Listener Q&A: Emily - Shift Work And Weightloss

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 183 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat, with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

Gin Stephens: Hi everybody. I want to take a minute to talk about enzymes. Enzymes are the workhorses of digestion. They break your food down into usable macro and micronutrients. Many of us may lack digestive enzymes and that leads to digestive issues like bloating, indigestion, and gas. You're not what you eat, you're what you digest. We lose enzymes as we age. So, if you don't have enough enzymes, you might only be absorbing 40% of the foods you're eating. There are two big problems here. Most digestive enzymes are cheap and ineffective, and most do not have enough protease for digesting healthy high protein diets.

That's why I'm so excited to tell you about a new enzyme product called MassZymes. MassZymes is the most complete, most potent digestive enzyme around with over 102% more protease than the nearest competitor, and 300% to 500% more per serving than most popular brands. That's crucial because protein is the most complex macronutrient to break down. Left undigested, protein creates a variety of problems in the gut, from bloating to inflammation and beyond.

The Intermittent Fasting Podcast is excited to announce a special offer just for our listeners. We guarantee it's the best deal available on this product. With volume discounts combined with our custom 10% coupon code, IFPODCAST10, you can save up to 48% off select packages of MassZymes. That's an amazing value. This special deal is only available if you go to www.bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast. You won't find that deal on Amazon or even the company's own website. This deal is exclusively for podcast listeners, and it's legitimately for a limited time while supplies last.

The best part is if you don't feel how MassZymes transforms your digestion, you can get a no-questions-asked, moneyback return on your order. For the fastest shipping, go to bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast, and use coupon code, IFPODCAST10, to save up to 48% on MassZymes. That's B-I-O-P-T-I-M-Z-E-R-S dotcom slash IF podcast.

Melanie Avalon: And one more thing before we jump in, are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that what you put on your skin gets direct access to your bloodstream? And in your body can do a lot of detrimental things. So, while you may be fasting clean, you may at the same time be infusing your body with endocrine disrupters, which can mess with your hormones, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight and even carcinogens.

In Europe, they've banned thousands of these compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup, and the US has banned less than 10. In fact, most conventional lipstick for example is high in lead, and the half-life of lead in the body can be up to 30 years. That means every time you put on some lipstick, you might be putting some lead into your bones, which might not leave for three decades. This is a big deal. Thankfully, there's an easy all-encompassing answer.

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

All right. Now enjoy the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode #183 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'm cold.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, isn't it wonderful?

Gin Stephens: No, I have on shoes, jeans, and long sleeves.

Melanie Avalon: I have on-- I don't even know what it's called. What's it called when the shirt is like-- it doesn't have shoulders, like when it's--?

Gin Stephens: I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Doesn't have straps?

Gin Stephens: Strapless?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. [laughs] I'm in a strapless shirt, and shorts. And nothing else.

Gin Stephens: Okay. Do you keep your heat really up high in your apartment?

Melanie Avalon: No, I keep it at 67.

Gin Stephens: Okay, well, I'm cold.

Melanie Avalon: During the day and 60 at night.

Gin Stephens: Oh my gosh. Yeah, my house has really cold floors. It's built on a slab, is built in '79. Our last house was built on crawlspace and so it was not like this. But this one, it's built on a slab and it just gets cold really fast when the weather changes.

Melanie Avalon: Fabulous!

Gin Stephens: No, not fabulous. All weekend is really when the weather changes, I don't know, Melanie, every year when fall comes, I'm surprised because it's like summer, summer, summer, I'm hot, hot, hot.

Melanie Avalon: It does happen really fast here.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. And then like one minute, it's like 90, and then you wake up and you're like, “What's happening?” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: It happens after a storm, I feel.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. We did have some rain and then you have all of a sudden-- I went to my niece's birthday party on Saturday, and I was wearing a sleeveless shirt and I was freezing the whole time. And then the next day, I was outside and I was hot the whole time. I can't get it right. It's the time of the year when you just don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, like the weather will change, goes back and forth, and back and forth. It changes its mind and then it just decides to stay. I'm hoping that’s this moment. I feel it is.

Gin Stephens: It definitely feels like fall. My feet are crying.

Melanie Avalon: Feels wonderful.

Gin Stephens: I don't like to have cold feet.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I texted my sister. I was like, “I can live here if it was like this all the time.” I guess I do live here but--

Gin Stephens: You could live here forever. Anything new going on with you?

Melanie Avalon: I think I've talked about this before. I'm reading The Immunity Code by Joel Greene. Did I talk about that? He's the one who says that when we lose fat, it actually damages the fat cells.

Gin Stephens: I think you did mention that. Yeah, that sounds familiar.

Melanie Avalon: This book is blowing my mind. I do not remember the last time I read a book about everything that we talk about, fasting, weight loss, all the stuff that blew my mind to the extent that this book is blowing my mind.

Gin Stephens: Now, does he talk about fasting?

Melanie Avalon: Yes. A lot.

Gin Stephens: Big fan, I would imagine.

Melanie Avalon: Yes and no.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: I need to finish the book. I actually have him booked to come on the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, and this is actually the first time I think I'm going to email and say, “Can we plan to record for three hours and make it a two-part episode?” Because that's how mind-blowing and how much information there is.

Gin Stephens: Well, that sounds like a must read then. Why is he yes and no with fasting? Can you give us a little brief?

Melanie Avalon: I need to read more because I'm just now getting to that part. But what he said thus far, I'm like halfway through, it's a really long book, but it's a page-turner. Normally, it's long and I'm enjoying the books, but I have to use willpower and power through. This one, I'm just like, “Ah, it's just so good.” Basically, his premise is that fat loss in general, especially fat loss and regaining fat loss and regain, in the long term, it sets up the body for weight regain, because every time you lose weight and regain it, the fat cells actually become damaged and the extracellular matrix, like the membrane that surrounds the fat cells becomes more rigid and tight. A lot more to that, but something about how fasting too much for too long.

So, he's been doing everything before anybody knew about anything. He was talking about the gut microbiome like 20 years ago. He's had a website for a long time. He was doing one meal a day, I think, for quite a while for a long time. And he thinks that that had massive problems actually in the long term, but I need to finish to figure out why I don't know the nuance exactly of why because he does think the key to sustained weight loss is losing the weight and getting lean and staying lean. That's the key.

So, my question is for people who get lean and stay lean with one meal a day or fasting, is there a problem there? I don't know, because I haven't finished reading it. He thinks the health issues that we mostly have today are because when we gain fat, especially for losing and regaining, but in any case, when we gain fat, all of the immune cells-- so fat isn't just fat, it's also fat, stem cells, and immune cells. And as we age, and as we gain fat, our fat becomes more immune cells, less actual fat, and then our actual immune cells can be either anti-inflammatory, he calls them like the Blue Team, or inflammatory which he calls the Red Team. And he thinks aging is basically our immune cell population shifting to more of the inflammatory Red Team. And that's exacerbated a lot by weight gain and inflammatory fat, like cytokines being released from fat and infiltrating our organs in our body.

Gin Stephens: So, the yo-yo is really bad, he's saying.

Melanie Avalon: Yo-yo is really bad. That's my takeaway.

Gin Stephens: Well, that makes me happy because I used to live in the yo-yo, and I haven't been on the yo-yo since 2014. Yay!

Melanie Avalon: He even talks about how you could be obese and healthy if the nature of the fat is it's not inflammatory fat. If it's healthy young fat in a way, that's healthier than being lean and having your fat cells actually broken and damaged and marked by inflammatory immune cells.

Gin Stephens: And for listeners, we're not saying don't try to lose weight. It's not the takeaway message here. Oh, my gosh, I should just state it, no, no.

Melanie Avalon: Well, because the majority of people are-- I mean, I don't know this as a stat. But in our modern world, it's often likely that if you are overweight, it's probably not the super healthy form of being overweight. It's probably more inflammatory. What his book is about is how to lose weight because that is the healthy thing, but how to lose it and stay there and not have all this cascade effect of weight regain.

Gin Stephens: Right. It does make sense that that would not be good for you.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It's blowing my mind. I didn't realize there are all these studies on fat cell matrices and what happens to them. It's just really fascinating. So, to be continued.

Gin Stephens: All right, well, that sounds good.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really excited to see what he says about fasting more. And he has all these hacks-- I just thought about because we're talking about the cold. One of his hacks is how to burn stubborn fat. And it's like you put menthol on the area, I don't know the exact steps, but it's like you put menthol on the area, and then you ice it for 15 to 20 minutes, and then you take some niacin or I don’t know if it was niacin. It was some supplement, and then you go to bed. And it will preferentially burn off that area.

Gin Stephens: Well, that's interesting.

Melanie Avalon: It's literally very specific things like that. It's mind blowing.

Gin Stephens: Hmm, okay, I'm skeptical of that one.

[laughter]

Melanie Avalon: I know, that was out of context. But if you read the whole thing--

Gin Stephens: All right, everybody is going to be going out and putting some menthol on their saddlebags trot out, let's say.

Melanie Avalon: It makes sense, though, what we know about cold and everything. The other update is, I interviewed Siim Land yesterday again.

Gin Stephens: How was that?

Melanie Avalon: It was really good. He's into all the things. Talking to him, I just felt like I'm talking to myself.

Gin Stephens: That's funny. I love it though because you know I don't do all the things. I do intermittent fasting. I do a thing here and there. That's it.

Melanie Avalon: And it works. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I eat the food.

Melanie Avalon: I love it. Actually, yeah-- this is so specific. The first thing he and Joel Greene's book-- because he has all these hacks and things you're supposed to do and-- Oh, apparently, it's all about you have to do them in order. That's like really, really important. Otherwise, everything will go wrong. The very first thing is, it's specific, you eat apple skins in the morning.

Gin Stephens: Yes, see, that's already too hard for me.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, it gets better. Then, you do that for a certain amount of time, then you eat apple skins plus, I think, HMOs. You have to get like baby formula or something-- I don't know, it's very specific. It's to get more Akkermansia bacteria in your gut lining.

Gin Stephens: That's one of those things that I would not be doing. [laughs] No, thank you. I don't even want to write down what I'm eating and put it in an app, much less eat what you're telling me to eat.

Melanie Avalon: Much less go get some apples and peel it and eat the skins at a certain time.

Gin Stephens: I mean I might like some apple skin, but I learned from my muffin-- the PREDICT 3, that I wanted to put butter and jelly on my muffin, but I couldn't. Peanut butter, that would have been delicious, though. Anyway. Good times.

Melanie Avalon: Good times.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's funny.

Melanie Avalon: Well, anything else?

Gin Stephens: No, that’s it.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, to start things off, we have some feedback from Debbie. The subject is "Terminology." And Deb says, “Good morning, ladies, I enjoy listening and have been IFing since May 20th. I am down almost 20 pounds and about to drop another jeans size for a total of two. And I thank you for the wealth of helpful information that has helped me on this journey. I'm currently listening to Episode 179, and I specifically want to address when you talked about how to discuss IF with kids who won't really understand it, or actually anyone who questions you about it. And I think I have a possible solution for kids, the doubters, naysayers, etc.

For whatever reason, the simple word 'fasting' has such a negative connotation to it for a lot of people. I wonder if just changing the words around might help. For instance, the next time I get a question about what I am doing or how I have lost weight, I plan to simply say, ‘I started eating intermittently instead of gorging on so much food in one day, and I really feel much better,’ instead of telling them how I do intermittent fasting. Maybe if we put the emphasis on how it has improved our health and the way we feel, which is why I personally began doing it, we can change the way people react to it.

While I don't really feel the need to explain myself to people because it's my life, my body, it's no one's place to criticize, and you can't argue with positive results, but in order to avoid hearing the negative feedback, and getting all worked up over it, I think this is my new way to answer the questions. We'll see how it goes.” Before I read her next thing, Gin, do you have thoughts on that?

Gin Stephens: Well, in Fast. Feast. Repeat., I talked about-- the actual scientific terminology, if you have a daily eating window is time-restricted eating. And that's one way you can explain it without using the word 'fasting.' We use time-restricted eating, or I do actually like the words intermittent eating. That's what we're doing. We intermittently eat, we intermittently fast. But these days, I'm not so worried. Here's a funny story, Melanie, I never told you this. When I was talking to our shared literary agent, we were going to start pitching Fast. Feast. Repeat. So, we're talking, this was in, okay, what year is it? When did this-- When was this conversation? It was over a year before it came out. So, this was in early 2019. We were talking. And she actually said, “Instead of the words 'intermittent fasting,' should we use other words?” And I said, “No, because that's the wording that's already out there.” And she's like, “Okay, got it.” But the wording is out there. So, I've actually heard scientists say we shouldn't call it intermittent fasting. Some scientists really don't like when time-restricted eating, the daily eating window approach, is referred to as intermittent fasting. They think you should only use intermittent fasting to describe an alternate daily fasting protocol or extended fasting even. They don't think that the daily eating window approach qualifies as intermittent fasting.

Melanie Avalon: And a lot of the figures in the industry, like Peter Attia, definitely thinks that, and a lot of other people as well.

Gin Stephens: But I didn't name it, Melanie didn't name it. This is out there. It's the jargon. We're not going to be able to change what the world calls it, unfortunately. But when you're explaining it to somebody like a kid, I would not tell a kid, “I'm fasting.” I wouldn't say that to a kid. I would just say, “I'm not eating right now.” That's enough. That's all they need to know. I'm gonna eat later. If adults start quizzing me on it, and really, they don't, you just say, “No, thank you.” And they usually move along. Unless they're like, super-- maybe a family member might want to know more, but another adult, you really don't even need to tell them. Just, “No, thank you,” is enough, they don't need to know when I'm eating, what I'm eating, if I eat before, if I'm going to eat later. So, you really don't even need to mention it. Just say, “I'm not eating right now.” But time-restricted eating is great terminology. If you would like to use that instead of saying fasting, actually you've got scientists on your side who think that's probably a better wording than intermittent fasting. But as I said, that cat's out of the bag. Any plan where you're having periods of fasting and periods of eating is now under the general umbrella 'intermittent fasting.'

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, 100%, because I think I had a list in What When Wine of how to talk to people about it and it was a lot of those points. It was basically-- you can also keep it short and simple. You don't have to feel the need to go into a lot of detail.

Gin Stephens: You really don't. And you could just say, “Hey, I read this book, What When Wine.” Or, “I read this book, Fast. Feast. Repeat.” Or, “I read Delay, Don't Deny.” And if you're interested in learning more, read that. Those authors explain it better than I could. Just tell somebody that and let them go read it if they really want to know more.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I like the way she said, eating intermittently.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I like that too.

Melanie Avalon: Have you heard of Alan Goldhamer? TrueNorth Health Center?

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah. That's extended fasting.

Melanie Avalon: I'll put it on the Himalaya podcast app, Intermittent Fasting podcast stuff we like. I have a playlist there. But I've been listening to an interview with him with Ritual. It's pretty new, it was like a month ago, August 24th. That's really all I was going to say, was that-- But it's all about fasting and he was talking about the difference between when they first started the center because I don't know when that center started, but it was quite a while ago. I guess, just the difference between when they first started it and compared to now and the acceptance around fasting.

Gin Stephens: I do think it's silly, because-- let's say you're going to have bloodwork done and your doctor says, “It's fasted bloodwork.” They don't make you fast for two days. You don't eat after midnight, you wake up in the morning like eight hours later, they call that fasted. I think people get all crazy about it. That is fasting. So, we are extending that fast. Those of us that do the daily eating window approach, we are having a longer fasting period.

Melanie Avalon: We're just breaking the fast, breakfast. It's just a little bit later.

Gin Stephens: Exactly.

Melanie Avalon: So, the rest of Deb's email, she says, “One last note on this episode, you both used the term 'Debbie Downer' a lot, and always apologize to anyone named Debbie,” which is her. “And I always chuckle a little when I hear that. From now on, we can just say, don't be a downer? Of course, I am kidding a little when I say this, but just a suggestion.” She says, “Thank you and keep the awesome info and studies coming. I always learn something new from each episode.”

Gin Stephens: Oh, and she said "Sincerely, Debbie (not a downer)." [laughs] I get it, Debbie, I'm sorry. I have a friend whose name is Karen, and that's a name that gets a lot of jokes. Like, “Don't be a Karen.” Sorry, all the Karens out there. I'm not saying it, I didn't make it up. I'm just saying Karens also fall into this situation. So, I'm sorry that your name is got that connotation. We'll try to do better to not say that. Although my very favorite skit, and I'm sure Debbie doesn't like it, and I probably wouldn't if my name was Debbie, or I would just to find the humor in it, The Debbie Downer from Saturday Night Live.

Melanie Avalon: I thought you're going to say that.

Gin Stephens: Have you seen those?

Melanie Avalon: Actually, no, but I was like, it's going to be a Saturday Night Live skit.

Gin Stephens: And if you want to call don't be a downer, that'd be fine, but they are just really hilarious. Those skits, they're some of my favorite. It's like the family around the Thanksgiving table and they're like, “Everyone say what you're thankful for.” She's like, “I'm thankful I didn't get salmonella this year like my neighbor did.” Womp-Womp! Anyway, that's my favorite Saturday Night Live skit.

Melanie Avalon: I feel like I missed out on Saturday Night Live. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I haven't watched it for a while. But there were some eras that were better than others. But all through high school in the 80s, we were watching it. It was the Eddie Murphy years. Those were so good. He was fabulous.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know why I feel like I never tapped into that. Maybe because I didn't really watch that much TV after a certain point, like when I would have been watching it.

Gin Stephens: We all watched it. Times were different back then there, too, because we only had-- and we didn't even have cable. I lived in the mountains. We didn't have cable television. There was no cable. There was no satellite. I don't know if it existed. But we had three channels, and if you could tune them in--

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: Well, four, if you count PBS. We had ABC, NBC, CBS, and if you could get PBS, that was lucky. And we had a rotor and we had to turn it and it had like an antenna on the top of the roof that had to turn based on-- if you were watching NBC and you wanted to switch to ABC, you had to turn the rotor and point it in a different direction. I'm telling you, you had to really want to change the channel. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Wow.

Gin Stephens: So, that's how old I am. It was rural Virginia, we were way out in the country. Everyone watched those things. It wasn't like you had 47 million options that you could watch. No, we all watched Saturday Night Live. We all watched Wonder Woman on whatever night that came on. We all watched the same things because that's all there was, such a different time. Anyway, thank you, Debbie, for that feedback.

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All right, now back to the show.

Gin Stephens: We're ready to move on to our first question.

Melanie Avalon: I think so. We actually have two questions tapping into a similar subject. Ashley, subject is "Fall Candles." She says, “Hi Gin and Melanie. First, I want to thank you for the podcast. I read the books and love them. But hearing from you weekly keeps me motivated. This might have been a question on an earlier episode, so I apologize if it's repetitive, but I wanted to ask about scented candles, specifically fall candles. I mostly do 20:4, started this past June with a down day on Thursdays and an up day on Fridays, just to switch things up. I've had a lot of success with this format. Thursdays are always a little bit challenging, but I don't usually get hungry until around 3:00 in the afternoon, so I am able to pull through. Okay, getting to the question. I am a sucker for fall-scented candles. Fall is the only season when I like candles that smell like food. I just ordered a pumpkin spice candle and another one that smells like pecan waffles.” Do you say pecan or pee-can?

Gin Stephens: Well, I say pee-can because that’s the South Carolina way to say it. Although I'm sure there's people in South Carolina who don't say it that way. But, yeah, pee-can is how we said it.

Melanie Avalon: So, those waffles. “I was having my down day last Thursday and I woke up early in the morning and lit the candle to boost my mood while working from home. Immediately, I was starving. I blew out the candle and a couple of hours later, I felt better. I pushed through it and I didn't get anything to eat. So, what I'm wondering is did the candle actually break my fast as in spiking insulin, or maybe just triggered my appetite? I can push through cravings, but I will definitely stop lighting the candles if it's defeating the purpose of my fast. Thank you so much. And I hope you know how much good you're doing for this community. I was not a very big girl to begin with, but I've always struggled to lose that last 10 to 15 pounds until reading your books. I'm confident for the first time ever. So, thank you for changing my life.”

We also have a question from Maggie. And the subject is "Going Overboard, Worried About Scented Candles and Lotions." And Maggie says, “Hi, I'm working my way through the first episodes of your podcast, love it. During my first week of IF, I tend to be the crazy dieter that follows every rule with no cheating. I'm not viewing this as a diet, but that mentality may be creeping in because I'm concerned that burning a food-scented candle might cause insulin release and break my fast. I'm a huge candle person and collector who always has one burning. I tend to love bakery and foodie scents. I'm nervous to burn them during my fasted period. I also own a lot of sweet-smelling body lotions, which I'm afraid to use. How crazy am I being? Can artificial scents such as these trigger insulin? Should I follow the rule of if you're not sure, just say no. Thanks, Maggie.”

Gin Stephens: Okay, so here's the thing. My rule of thumb is I don't want you to worry about something you can't control, like if you're walking through the mall and you’d smell Cinnabon and you're freaking out like you have to wear clothes put on your nose like, oh my gosh, I'm “breaking the fast.” I don't want you to live in fear. That being said, we can control whether we're burning food-scented candles or putting on body lotions that make our bodies think that food isn't coming. And I really hate to even say this but, yes, we do have scientific studies that show insulin response to the sight and smell of food. I'm looking at one right here, it's a study, “Peripheral insulin in response to the sight and smell of food.” This is an old study, this is from 1980. But they looked at 25 obese women and 23, they call them “reference women,” to find out what happened, and they did have an insulin response to the presentation, the smell of food. It's because when we smell that food smell-- this is the explanation, I'm going to read this quote, “is the parasympathetic nervous system triggers salivation and increases insulin production in response to the expectation that glucose will be entering the bloodstream.” And that was actually from a different article. But that's a direct quote from somebody.

And in the study that I mentioned before about they compared the obese women with the “reference women,” the insulin response was higher in the obese women. Is that fair? No. But it shows to me that if you are someone who is obese or has been overweight for a while, and you're really trying to lose weight, you may have a larger insulin response to that delicious pumpkin spice candle than someone who is not. And so, it sounds nuts to say, maybe don't burn that pumpkin spice candle while you're trying to lose weight, but the science actually is there. And I'm sorry to report that because that does sound-- for someone like me, who likes to keep things simple, I don't want to worry about a lot of things, I don't want to say be careful with your candle because it sounds nuts. But I think that Ashley already knew that that candle bothered her because she was starving and so, the insulin response that could happen. So, anyway, what do you say to that, Melanie?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, pretty much the same page, and I also looked up a lot of studies, and I learned some really fascinating things I didn't know. Do you know where the highest density of central insulin receptors are located and the highest insulin concentration?

Gin Stephens: I do not.

Melanie Avalon: On the olfactory bulb.

Gin Stephens: Okay, that's where the smells are.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. So, apparently, the connection between our appetite, insulin, and smells is really, really important. When we think about it, it's almost shocking, something I recently experienced myself how much our sense of smell relates to our taste because as you know, I recently had my deviated septum fixed. I couldn't smell through my nose for a week. I couldn't taste food. One of the Q&As is like, “When will I be able to taste food again?" And one of the other things I learned researching this was that apparently, the way that our nose-- how we smell it. Initially, the first phase is smelling it in the air, so like the candle or smelling a food. But then, the second phase is when we actually eat it and then it releases smells that go up through into our nose, and that's the second phase. But what's really interesting is that when we're fasted, we tend to have a higher sensitivity to smells. And then, when you eat, when you're satiated, our perception of smells goes down. It's not quite as acute. So, if you're smelling a candle in the fasted state, it's probably going to have much more of a stimulating effect and--

Gin Stephens: Can I interrupt you for a second? Am I right to then-- from what you just said, when it's actually in your mouth and you're “smelling it from your mouth through your nose,” that way, it's actually magnified? Is that what you're saying?

Melanie Avalon: Well, I'm saying when you actually eat it and break it down, the most potent smell effect is from eating it.

Gin Stephens: From inside your mouth, okay. I'm just trying to distinguish, so an exterior smell is different than the taste/smell. So, it's more pronounced when it goes in the mouth.

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. But what's interesting is I was reading one article, and it was analyzing the work of like Pavlov's dogs. And it was talking about how he didn't really analyze smell specifically, because in his work, he would basically tempt dogs with things they wanted and measure their salivation and how their bodies were responding to it. But this was really interesting. If the food was just briefly put in the dog's mouth, it didn't have that big of an effect. But if they were tempted, so they could smell the food for like five minutes, that had a way bigger effect on their gastric acids being released.

Gin Stephens: They were anticipating it. So, that's interesting. I wonder then, this is just me wondering, I don't know if there're studies about this or not. When I'm preparing food for my family, but I know I'm not going to eat it, I have no anticipation that I'm going to eat this food. I have no like-- I don't get all hungry and worked up over it. But maybe if I were planning to eat it, that anticipation would play a role.

Melanie Avalon: I think so.

Gin Stephens: Because I can handle food and not feel starving and not feel like I need to eat it. But then, when you are fixing it, you're getting ready to eat it. It's that different kind of like, “Ooh, I'm going to eat this.” So, the anticipatory period is important.

Melanie Avalon: It's super important. It's important because it preps your body to digest it. Actually, sorry, this is a really quick tangent. Did I talk about that really fascinating study from Paul Saladino’s book about vegetarian people seeing meat?

Gin Stephens: No.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, my goodness, this blew my mind, and this kind of speaks to what you were just talking about. So, they've done studies on so-- they can look at like, I forget what it's called electric something potential, like seeing what part of your brain is lighting up to seeing certain stimuli. And when they show meat to omnivores, I don't know if in the study if they were like fasted, I bet they probably were. So, omnivores that see meat, they experience desire consciously and subconsciously, so another part of their brain. I don't who it is, vegans or vegetarians, but if they show them meat, they don't experience conscious desire for it but the subconscious part of their brain, still lights up, which I thought was really fascinating. Paul Saladino was using it as an argument that we're naturally wired to desire meat.

Gin Stephens: Naturally omnivores.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. But I just found that really fascinating. The reason I was thinking about it was, I don't know what the implications are if you're constantly telling yourself I'm not eating this now, does that override? I don't know. I'm just theorizing. I'm just pontificating. There's a slight nuance and I almost don't want to throw in this nuance because it will confuse people. Before I say that, this is really similar to what Gin just said, from her study. I actually thought for a second that we were looking at the same study, but this is different.

One of the ones I read said that sensory inputs are well known to influence digestive processes in the anticipatory or cephalic phase, sensory perception of food drives the secretion of gastric juices in preparation for food intake via parasympathetic control through the vagus nerve. So, similar to what you just said. The slight caveat is another study was looking at it and it said that the smell of food induces salivation and release of gastric acid and insulin, conversely sustained odor exposure may induce satiation.

Gin Stephens: So, it stops after a while. If you're like working at a bakery, don't stress out over it.

Melanie Avalon: I thought this is going to freak people out hearing that, but actually to this point--

Gin Stephens: No, I think it's good. Actually, I'm glad you said that because it doesn't just keep going and going and going. Also, I think our bodies just turn off sensory things that just go for a long, long time.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I would believe it.

Gin Stephens: They stopped responding. Well, we know that with sound, you stop hearing it after a while. I mean you really hear it, but you stop noticing it. The same with the smells, that sort of thing. I think it's different, like you said, if it actually is coming in your mouth, like I wouldn't lick it. I wouldn't lick a cookie repeatedly.

Melanie Avalon: It says that acute exposure, so temporary exposure to attractive vinegar odor. I don't know what they were testing. I don't know when vinegar odor is attractive.

Gin Stephens: I love vinegar odor.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. Oh, wait, like the salt lick vinegar?

Gin Stephens: I love all vinegar odor. Did you ever color easter eggs with those kits that you had to put it? Love it. I love that smell.

Melanie Avalon: Of course, you do.

Gin Stephens: I bet you don't like salt and vinegar potato chips.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know what those tastes like.

Gin Stephens: Like putting vinegar on your fries?

Melanie Avalon: Well, I never liked vinegar, so I never put them on.

Gin Stephens: Okay, malt vinegar on fries, amazing. Yeah, I like vinegar.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, yeah. This is so funny because one of the only things I probably didn't like about like Easter was that awful smell of--

Gin Stephens: I would just sit there and sniff it, like on purpose. [laughs] But are we surprised?

Melanie Avalon: No. That's so funny. So, maybe they were. Acute exposure to attractive vinegar odor, which Gin knows all about, triggers a rapid and transient increase in circulating glucose, a rapid upregulation of genes encoding the glucagon, like hormone adipokinetic hormone, for insulin like peptides and some target genes. And then, it says sustained exposure to food odors, however, decreases food intake. So, yes, if you're working at a bakery or you're working at the scented candle Bath & Body Works, it's okay. You'll be okay.

Gin Stephens: It'll happen. And then if you keep it going, you'll get used to it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it says food odor can induce a transient anticipatory endocrine response. So, unless you're anticipating it for your five-hour shift or eight-hour shift-- I don't know how long shifts are. But, yeah.

Gin Stephens: I don't burn scented candles during my fast, but then again, I don't burn scented candles ever because I don't like really strong smelly things.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't like any smells, please.

Gin Stephens: I did get some, that Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day. I love their-- Okay, there's some smells that I like.

Melanie Avalon: Wait, here's the teller because there's like one natural smell, pretty much I don't really like the smell of the world that much but there is one smell I love.

Gin Stephens: Is it lavender?

Melanie Avalon: I don't like lavender.

Gin Stephens: I like lavender.

Melanie Avalon: It gives me a headache.

Gin Stephens: Is it vanilla?

Melanie Avalon: I like vanilla.

Gin Stephens: I love vanilla.

Melanie Avalon: Oh. Yay! Trees.

Gin Stephens: Oh, you like tree?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, like pine.

Gin Stephens: But you don't like pine-scented stuff?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I don't really like scented anything, but I like pine.

Gin Stephens: Like a real pine tree?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, me too. I like that too.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, we can meet up in a pine forest with vanilla.

Gin Stephens: Oh, yeah, I'll go to a pine forest.

Melanie Avalon: A vanilla-scented pine forest would smell wonderful.

Gin Stephens: I think you're right. Sounds like Christmas.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Oh, it does.

Gin Stephens: Which will be here before we know it.

Melanie Avalon: I know.

Gin Stephens: That really is true. I can't wait to decorate for Christmas.

Melanie Avalon: I love Christmas. So, body products. I'm assuming we would not encourage having food-smelling body products. And, on top of that, if you haven't considered it, I would encourage not putting on these scented body lotions anyway, because I've talked about this a lot before, but we're putting these onto our skin, those compounds are often endocrine disruptors and there are ones called obesogens often found in these skincare products and they can actually affect your fat cells to encourage your body to store and gain weight.

Gin Stephens: Although I love the smell of the Beautycounter lotion.

Melanie Avalon: Which does not smell like food.

Gin Stephens: Well, is it a citrusy kind of thing?

Melanie Avalon: There's a lot of citrus. It's all natural smells, but it's like, yeah, like citrus and stuff like that. A lot of citrus represented.

Gin Stephens: I guess here's what I would say to both Maggie and to Ashley. I would say this. If you're using anything like a lotion or a candle, and you find that it makes you shaky or nauseated, then that is not working for you. But one little stomach growl and then going about your day, you're probably fine, right? If it makes you shaky or nauseous, don't use it. But other than that, go by how you feel, if it makes you starving, starving, starving, don't use it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, pretty much.

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All right, now back to the show.

Gin Stephens: All right, let's move on. We have a question from Barbora. And the subject is "The Perfect Pair." Barbora says, “Hi, lovely ladies, I know you hear this a lot, but I really enjoy listening to your podcast. I drive a lot for work, and your conversations are part of my weekly journeys. IF has changed my life in more ways than one. I have Crohn's disease and stumbled across intermittent fasting through my consultant. I didn't do it right the first time until I discovered your podcast and learned all about clean fasting through all of Gin's books. I am now on an amazing route to a good health lifestyle. IF has helped me with my symptoms, and I am deep diving into nutrition and holistic approaches. I fast clean, I'm starting to eat better. I'm listening to my body. Anyway, thank you, Gin for being the voice of reason. And thank you, Melanie, for being you. You talk as fast as you think, and that is me all over. So, I feel like I know you really well. I love both of your other podcasts and always look forward to new releases. I would love to know how you two actually met and came up with the IF podcast idea and how you've kept it going so great.

Last but not least, I have now got my mum, couple of friends, my hairdresser, and colleagues at work all doing IF, and I've become their “unofficial coach,” passing down the knowledge I learned from you both. Yes, they have DDD or FFR books too, Gin. Much love to you both. And thank you, Barbara, from the UK.” And notice how I said mum instead of mom because that's how she spelled it. And it was the UK spelling.

Melanie Avalon: She also spells her name, Barb, is that how they spell Barbara in the UK?

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know. There's lots of different ways. I was a schoolteacher as you know, for 28 years, there's a million ways to spell every single name that you could possibly have. But, usually, people pronounce it the standard way. But you never know.

Melanie Avalon: She spells it with an O, for listeners who are curious, Barbora. Actually, this is appropriate timing. I just got an email from a company we're going to start working with and they were like, “Can you send a picture of you and Gin together?” And I was like, “Well--"

Gin Stephens: Nope. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: I cannot, actually. [laughs] Gin and I have never met in person.

Gin Stephens: We need to get a picture together.

Melanie Avalon: I know.

Gin Stephens: I know people are probably like-- their minds are exploding right now.

Melanie Avalon: That we've never met in person? Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Because we said it before on the podcast. But I know people assume we have met by now. But we still haven't.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I remember when I asked questions for you in the group somebody asked that, was like, “Have you still met in person?” And everybody was like, “What?” Long story short, which we've told a few times on the show, but why not retell it? I was wanting to start a podcast. I had self-published a book, like Gin, about intermittent fasting, the original What When Wine diet, and I was wanting to start a podcast about intermittent fasting, but I wanted a cohost. So, I just was Facebook googling like intermittent fasting groups. And so, I wandered into the one meal a day group. And I was like, "looking to start a fasting podcast." And at this point, I did have my book deal. So, I had a book coming out. I had What When Wine coming out. I didn't mention the title because I didn't want people to think I was trying to pitch my book. But I did say I have a book coming out in bookstores about fasting, I would like to start a podcast, is anybody interested? And everybody in the group completely freaked out.

Gin Stephens: They did. It was small at that time, I have to say. This was in early 2017. And my book had only been out for like three months at this point. My book was still new. Yeah, everybody freaked out, reported it, reported it. You know how people do.

Melanie Avalon: And I got kicked out of the group. I was like, “Okay.”

Gin Stephens: Just briefly while we could regroup, and that was me, I was the only admin, there was nobody but me. So, I'm the one, because it was reported. And people were like, “You're very rude, coming in here and trying to--” I mean those were like the comments-- that people said, it wasn't rude at all. But the comments were, that's what someone said. I don't even know if you saw those comments, because-- but people reported the post and the comments were like, “I can't believe you're coming in here talking about your book.” So, then I reached out to you by Messenger and said, “Hey, I saw your post, and let's talk about that.” And I can remember-- and then I added you back to the group immediately. I probably was teaching school at the time, like it was in the middle of a school day. And so, I'd be trying to teach, and then I'd get a notification. Anyway, things would happen, and I would be like, “What's happening? I have to go do another job now, kids. Just give me a minute.” But initially, you were like, “Let's do one,” because you liked Paleo Women. And you're like, “Let's do intermittent fasting for women.” And I'm so glad we decided to--

Melanie Avalon: I know we were like talking about a lot of different ways to take in.

Gin Stephens: Women. Your initial idea was you wanted to do a podcast targeted to women.

Melanie Avalon: I don't even remember that.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I remember that. And I was like, “Well we have a lot of men in the group. So how about-- I think men would like it too.” I think men would also listen, and I'm so glad that we did not target it just to women because I know we have some fabulous men who listen all the time. And in fact, I was just talking yesterday to-- her name is Lisa Fischer. She's a radio personality from Arkansas, and she's starting a podcast. And she actually first heard about intermittent fasting from her son, her college-aged son who discovered it through our podcast.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wow.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, so her college-age son listening to our podcast. So, shoutout to Lisa’s son. Gosh, I wish I could think of his name. Something like Gibson. I can't remember that might not be it, but it's something-- it's a really cool name that I really loved, whatever it was. Sorry, I can't think of it, but he introduced Lisa to intermittent fasting. And then, she introduced thousands of people from Arkansas. I had to think for a minute. I don't know how you say it, Arkansanians? People from Arkansas. Arkan-- I don't know. Arkansanians. I'm sure that's not it.

Melanie Avalon: Georgians, Tennesseans, Floridians, Arkans-- Floridians.

Gin Stephens: Arkansas people. Anyway. Lots of people in the Little Rock, Arkansas area doing intermittent fasting, thanks to Lisa. She's pretty awesome.

Melanie Avalon: That's amazing.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, but I'm so glad that we didn't just do it to women, target the show to women because intermittent fasting has broad appeal. And I'm thrilled that men enjoy our podcast as well.

Melanie Avalon: Same. And I'm also thrilled because we went back and forth on the name.

Gin Stephens: We did.

Melanie Avalon: And we were like, should we make it like catchy and clever and like subtitles, and finally, we just called it The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. Best decision ever.

Gin Stephens: It was the best decision ever. Keep it simple.

Melanie Avalon: I remember we did a call to talk it out.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, to meet. And I was like, “I like her.”

Melanie Avalon: Me, I was like, “I like her.”

Gin Stephens: Yay.

Melanie Avalon: I remember also, because, originally, I was thinking like, somebody my age and make it the paleo women podcast, I guess which at the time was-- Yeah, now it's called Well-Fed Women, which is so surreal how far we've come because now I'm really, really good friends with Noelle, like really good friends with her. She's the host of that show. But I think it's worked so well that because between me and you, we can cover all perspectives.

Gin Stephens: Right, because I'm a whole lot older than you. I don't know if people realize that, but I'm over 20 years older than you.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. I like how we have different-- like, we're on the same page about the fundamentals. But then, I get to cover the people who are like slightly more paleo or obsessed with biohacking or that. And then, you're more of the people who fasting is their main thing, not as much, but we're still on the same page about the overall fundamental importance of so many things, like genetics and the gut microbiome and mindset and all this stuff.

Gin Stephens: It was 2017. So, it's been--

Melanie Avalon: Almost three years.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, over. It's been over three years. Yeah, over three years, April. I think May 1st of 2017 is when we were setting the first podcast to come out. That was our goal date, right around May.

Melanie Avalon: Wow. Here we are, Episode 183.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, over three years later. I love it.

Melanie Avalon: It's crazy.

Gin Stephens: It really is.

Melanie Avalon: It's interesting that we still have so much to talk about every time.

Gin Stephens: We do still have a lot to talk about.

Melanie Avalon: As long as we can talk a little bit about other things thrown in there as well. Personal life. I don't know, it's like a catalog of life events. It's funny, I was thinking about this the other day. I was thinking how, like, throughout everything in the past three years, I can probably-- regardless of what was happening, the one thing that was consistent was doing this show. So, I can remember like, well, recording the podcast at that time because nothing else have I done like that consistently.

Gin Stephens: Every week, we've put one out. Every single week.

Melanie Avalon: Few times where things got a little intense, trying to get it out.

Gin Stephens: But it happened.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. Super grateful.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, me too. I'm glad you wandered into our group. That was a good wandering.

Melanie Avalon: I'm glad you kicked me out and then accepted me.

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: I really didn't know what was happening because I was like, “What's going on?” Why is everybody so upset?" But people were being very protective.

Melanie Avalon: I think it's so funny, it's why I say it. It's really funny.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it is a funny story. I'm grateful to have this podcast. I've told this story too before, but I had just the week before been on a podcast that I was a guest. It was the first time I'd ever been a guest on a podcast, the week before. And it wasn't a health-related podcast. I think it was a political podcast, but the guy was in the group, and he's like, “Let's talk about fasting.” I'm like, “Fine.” We didn't talk about politics. But he was in the group. I'm not even sure what his politics were. But it wasn't a health podcast. But he interviewed me-- he and his cohost interviewed me, I can't even remember the name of it, but for like an hour. And I was able to talk about fasting for an hour, and I thought, “I wonder if I could do a podcast.” And then, one week later, you show up and say, “Anybody want to do a podcast?” I'm like, if that's not the universe, then I don't know what it is because I would still be thinking about it. I wouldn't be doing it.

Melanie Avalon: And now, here we both are with two shows each or another-- Well, two shows between us. We each have another show.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. A total of three.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Mine, yours, and ours. Isn't that what they say with kids when people get remarried? Ours, yours and--

Melanie Avalon: Oh, is that what they say?

Gin Stephens: Mine, yours, and ours. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: So, we have one more question from Emily, the subject is "Shift Work and Weight Loss." And Emily says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. I have a question regarding shift work and weight loss. I'm a 34-year-old, stay-at-home mom of four kids and I have a paper route as my side hustle. I typically sleep from 10 PM to 2 AM, work from 2:00 to 4:00 AM, six days a week and then sleep from 4 to 7 AM.” Wow, I'm just in awe of this. Okay.

She says, “I'm new to IF as I'm consuming books and podcasts during my fasting time, instead of food. I keep hearing you guys talk about shift work being one of those times where weight loss is difficult. I aim for a 20:4 hour fasting window and eat usually from 2 to 6 PM. I threw out my scale. So, I don't know if I've lost any weight, but I do feel better. Is the slimming down portion of this life plan likely going to be slow going for me, since my sleep is broken up into shifts? I don't eat during my work hours, obviously. But I now know there's a lot more to consider than just calories consumed when it comes to health and weight loss. I feel in control of my food consumption for the first time in my life, even if I don't lose a single pound, although I need to lose about 50 pounds, I will continue this simply because I'm no longer a slave to the cravings. Thank you, Emily.” Wow. So, she sleeps from 10 to 2, gets up, does her paper route from 2 to 4, and then comes back and sleeps until 7:00.

Gin Stephens: So, it sounds like she's getting seven hours of sleep a night, but it's interrupted with a two-hour period of work. I don't know, this is an unusual situation because that's more than just shift work because shift work is when someone is typically-- typical shift work is when people are sleeping during the day and awake when most people are sleeping. This is like she's still sleeping at a typical time, it's just broken up in the middle. If you're getting up to tend to a baby, that's waking up in the middle of the night. Boy, I remember those days, I never felt rested.

Melanie Avalon: And she's doing a paper route. So, she's like delivering.

Gin Stephens: Getting up, delivering the paper and then going back to sleep. This is just something, I don't know of any research into what happens when you have that little awake period in the middle of the night. Although, Melanie, have you ever read articles that talk about how people used to have-- Do they call it a biphasic sleep pattern? Have we talked about that before?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they would get up in the middle of the night and do something.

Gin Stephens: And then go back to bed.

Melanie Avalon: And I want to report back on this question because I want to do more research on this question.

Gin Stephens: I think this is very different than typical shift work where you're awake during the night, the whole night, and sleeping only during the day. That's opposite of our body's natural rhythm. But a lot of us naturally do tend to wake in the middle of the night right around that time. And as we've mentioned, it used to be common knowledge or common practice to wake up in the middle of the night and then go back to bed, like they would get up and do some things and then go back to bed. They also would probably go to bed earlier with the sun, when it got dark, they'd go to bed earlier, then they'd wake up in the middle of the night, be awake for a while, then go back to bed for a few more hours. So, I'm not sure that's a bad thing really. If it were me, I would probably try to go to sleep earlier than 10 PM, just to get a little bit more on the front end. If you feel like you need a little more sleep, maybe try to go to bed at 9 PM instead and see if you can.

Melanie Avalon: You might also benefit from a nap during the day if you can, do it.

Gin Stephens: But just that one more hour of asleep on the front end might really help, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to ask Dr. Kirk Parsley about this because he's a sleep expert and I really wish I had--

Gin Stephens: That's a great question. Maybe we could revisit it.

Melanie Avalon: Let's do a part two.

Gin Stephens: Get that info and then we can come back to it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because that is really interesting because when I read this through, but I think reading it now is when I realized exactly what she's doing which is--

Gin Stephens: Right. It's not exact shift work. Same thing with me, when the first time I read it, I was just like, “Oh, shift work.” But this is different.

Melanie Avalon: It does make me think because when I was interviewing Siim yesterday, he did a trial of polyphasic sleep for like 100 days. And he said, when he did it, he slept like four hours at night and then would take like two 20-minute naps during the day, which is obviously very different from this. And I don't even know if that's typical of the way you're supposed to do polyphasic sleep, but I just thought about it because he mitigated, I guess-- or he had that intense block and then he did the naps-- but there's a lot of studies on naps, and just how effective-- Oh, that is something I learned. Did you know that in theory-- because I'm always like terrified that taking a nap during the day will make me not being able to sleep at night? But in theory, if you have a full sleep cycle during the day, it shouldn't really affect your night. It's just like adding another sleep cycle.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I've never seen any science on napping. I don't typically nap. Unless it's like I'm out of whack because I've been on vacation and I'm sluggish, trying to get back to my fasting regimen. Other than that, I don't feel like I need a nap.

Melanie Avalon: I don't either. But apparently, they're really beneficial, and they're really beneficial for memory learning. So, there's different categories of it. And these numbers are not correct, but this was the general gist of it. If you're sleep-deprived and you learn something, that evening you might have like a-- on a scale of one to five, I'm completely making up these numbers, but this is the idea. On a scale of one to five of retention, you might have a two or three, and then the next day when you wake up, you'll be like a four. But if you were to take a nap, then you would already be like a four that night and the next day you'd be like a five. So, napping is really important, especially if you're sleep deprived, for memory formation. And for Emily, I think it could be helpful if she can fit it in.

Gin Stephens: It all depends on how old her kids are, and what they're doing, whether you can nap. Because I can remember when my boys were little, it was when Will was a newborn and Cal-- So, Cal was 18 months when Will was born. And so, I was in that period where I wasn't sleeping at night because I was getting up to feed Will-- Oh, Will turns 21 this week, by the way. So, this was 21 years ago. And so, I can remember, newborn Will was taking a nap and Cal was 18 months old, and I remember I was trying so hard to take a nap. I was lying on the couch and Cal was watching some-- probably Blue's Clues and I was trying so hard to take a nap. And he kept coming over and with his little chubby baby fingers was like prying my eyes open with his fingers. Like, “Mama, Mama.” I'm like, “Please, Cal, just let mama sleep, please.” So, there was no napping going down. And also, my children were not good nappers.

Melanie Avalon: I was never a napper.

Gin Stephens: Uh-huh, no, we're not good nappers. When Will was in kindergarten, first of all, he was old, because he's got a September birthday. So, he was already six and in kindergarten, because he was five when kindergarten started but turned six right away, and they had to have naptime. And his teachers, like, “Will will not lay on his mat at nap time.” I'm like, “He is not going to. So, you can either fight him on it, or you can give him something to do.” She's like, “Well, the rule is they have to just lay there.” I'm like, “Well, I'm sorry, he is not going to do that no matter what I do to him.” I mean, I could punish him every day. He ain’t going to lay on his nap mat and just lay there. I'm just telling you.

Melanie Avalon: I remember nap time. I forgot about that.

Gin Stephens: But every day, he got in trouble. At recess, he lost his recess every day because he wouldn't lay on his nap mat and like-- I wanted to just-- I'm like, I'm not the kindergarten teacher, but this is really not-- you're punishing him for his inability to lay still, and he was not able to do it. Anyway, it was a frustrating time as a mother.

Melanie Avalon: I remember one of the nap times, the teacher came and got me, and I thought I was in trouble. But then really, she was like-- I guess because I was a good student, she went and took me with some other student on some magical adventure during nap time, I don't remember what it was. It was something with feeding the plants or I don't know, something-- we did something fun.

Gin Stephens: I can remember being an elementary school and also we would have to put our heads down on our desks even in fourth grade because we didn't have recess. Our teacher was just like all the time. It was just our teacher. She had to teach us art. She had to teach us music. She never got a break. So, that was probably like their planning time, put your head down on your desk. But I also had a really hard time doing that. And so, she would give me jobs to do.

Melanie Avalon: Like what?

Gin Stephens: Like grade papers or do different things, but I could not sit still. So, I had lots of sympathy for Will and it was very frustrating as a mom because I could not fix it. I could not make him lie on his nap mat for his teacher. There was nothing I could do. He wasn't going to do it. And so, I was like-- I tried to talk to her. I'm like, “If you could just find-- Let him read a book.” She's like, “Nope, the rule is you have to lie there.” I'm like, “All right. Okie-doke.” [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: This is random, do they separate you in naptime by girls and boys? Or is it all just like--?

Gin Stephens: Everybody had their spot, and they didn't separate them by boys and girls. No.

Melanie Avalon: I didn’t think so. Good times.

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Well, on that note.

Gin Stephens: On that note, my little 21-year-old still wouldn't take a nap today, fella. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, not a napper. I don't understand how you can fall-- it's like take a 20-minute nap. It would take me 20 minutes to like maybe fall asleep. So, I don't know how a person takes like a 20-minute nap.

Gin Stephens: Or maybe the whole experience of a 20-minute nap takes 40 minutes.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it would take like five hours for me. I don't know.

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 podcast, 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 episode will be at ifpodcast.com/episode183. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. You can follow me, I'm @melaniemvalon. Gin is @ginstephens. And, yes, I think that's all the things. Anything from you, Gin, before we go.

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

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

Gin Stephens: All right. Talk to you then.

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. Theme 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!

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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

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Oct 11

Episode 182: Scale Anxiety, Antibiotics Damage, Microbiome and Weight, Hypothyroidism, Weekend Sabotage, Alcohol Metabolism, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

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Welcome to Episode 182 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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SHOW NOTES

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Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast: Epsiode 19 - Dr. Michael Ruscio

​The Intermittent Fasting Podcast: Episode 68 - Dr Micheal Ruscio

Healthy Gut, Healthy You (Dr. Michael Ruscio)

37:05 - Listener Q&A: Cherie - Bioptimizers confusion

IF Biohackers: Intermittent Fasting + Real Foods + Life (Facebook Group)

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TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 182 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

Friends, I have a story for you. I recently got septoplasty to fix my deviated septum so that I could breathe better. And in the recovery period, you're not supposed to wear glasses. Oh, my goodness. I cannot tell you how much I realized how much I adore and need and love BLUblox blue light blocking glasses. I've been wearing them every single night of my life until I got that surgery. Guys, you need this in your life.

In today's world, we're way overexposed to blue light. While blue light is energizing, we're not supposed to be seeing it 24/7, it can raise cortisol, stress levels, create tension and headaches, disrupt your sleep, and so much more. Of course, there are a lot of “blue light blocking glasses” on the market these days, Andy Mant, the founder of BLUblox, he personally realized how incredible blue light blocking glasses were for him personally. So, then he did something crazy and actually tested all the brands on the market to see if they actually were blocking blue light like they said they were. They weren't really. That's why he took things into his own hands to create glasses that would block the blue light you need to be blocking to truly have the healthiest relationship possible with light.

That's also why he made blue light blocking glasses in a lot of different versions. They have clear computer glasses you can wear all day while looking at the computer. They have their SummerGLO lens that block the draining form of blue light while still allowing in some of the energizing wavelengths. They're also tinted with a special yellow color, scientifically shown to boost mood. And, of course, they have their Sleep+ lens, you can put those on a bed and it's just like bam! tired. At least that's the way it works for me because actually blue light can block melatonin production, which helps us naturally fall asleep.

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And one more thing before we jump in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Did you know that what you put on your skin gets direct access to your bloodstream, and in your body can do a lot of detrimental things? So, while you may be fasting clean, you may at the same time be infusing your body with endocrine disrupters, which can mess with your hormones, obesogens, meaning they literally cause your body to store and gain weight and even carcinogens.

In Europe, they've banned thousands of these compounds found in conventional skincare and makeup, and the US has banned less than 10. In fact, most conventional lipstick, for example, is high in lead and the half-life of lead in the body can be up to 30 years. That means every time you put on some lipstick, you might be putting some lead into your bones which might not leave for three decades. This is a big deal.

Thankfully, there's an easy all-encompassing answer. There's a company called Beautycounter, and they were founded on a mission to make skincare and makeup products that are safe for your skin. Every single ingredient is extensively tested to not burden your body and support your skin health. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter and if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order.

If you'd like to learn more about safe beauty and also get a ton of amazing discounts and free things from me, definitely get on my clean beauty email list, that's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. Not sure which Beautycounter products to try? I also just made a whole series of online quizzes to match you to your perfect product. Those are at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz. So, here's to fasting clean inside and out.

All right. Now enjoy the show.

Hi everybody, and welcome this is episode 182 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. I'm Melanie Avalon and I'm here with Gin Stephens.

Gin Stephens: Hi everybody?

Melanie Avalon: How are you today, Gin?

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm a little bummed because it's so much the change of seasons. You know how much I love summer?

Melanie Avalon: I love it.

Gin Stephens: I'm wearing jeans. I'm still not wearing shoes, though. I was playing in my closet today looking at-- it's not time to switch it out yet that it's still warm enough, but it was like 76 here. But I have these shorts. Have I ever talked about my GAP shorts from the 90s that I still have?

Melanie Avalon: Maybe, refresh my memory.

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know why I saved these shorts. It was before I had kids. It was these GAP shorts, they're size 8 from like 1995 I'm guessing. It shows how sizes have changed so much over time. Because in college, I was probably about the same weight I am now, I might be a little smaller now but I don't know, but in college, I was a size eight.

Melanie Avalon: So, sizes have--?

Gin Stephens: Oh, changed big time. Yeah, vanity sizing.

Melanie Avalon: So, what would an 8 be now?

Gin Stephens: Well, just for a perspective, these are size 8 from the GAP from, like I said, about '95 and they're too big for me everywhere except the waist. The waist fits me. So, I have the same size waist that I had when I was 25 years old, which is awesome. But the butt and the thighs are just giant. But again, also, they're pleated and they're khaki shorts. I mean the clothes we wore back in that era were just not attractive.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Pleated khaki shorts. I mean they're like a bell. They're not cute. The waist fits me perfectly, but they're size 8 and I'm sitting here right now in zero jeans that the waist fits. So yeah.

Melanie Avalon: So, they're similar sized, but those are an 8 compared to zero now.

Gin Stephens: Yes. Well, I mean, they are too big for me except in the waist. But I think a lot of things now have relaxed waists.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Wow. So, back then zero must have been like?

Gin Stephens: I don't remember anyone being a zero, really. I don't remember it. I don't remember people even being a zero. Did they even have zero? I'm not sure it was. I know when I was 12 years old, I was tiny. Okay, tiny. My mother got remarried. And I was like a flower girl, it was this tiny little wedding, but I had a Gunne Sax brand dress. This is from the 80s, okay. Early 80s, maybe even late 70s, this brand Gunne Sax. It was this [unintelligible [00:07:54] style with ribbon and all that. And I think I was a size 3. I was like 12 and tiny.

Melanie Avalon: Because kid sizes are in one, three, five?

Gin Stephens: This is junior size.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, okay.

Gin Stephens: This junior size 3, someone who wears a 5 or a 7 now versus-- but I was itty-bitty and wearing a 3. I mean, I haven't been able to wear junior sizes though ever since I really went through puberty. I've always been in the even sizes, because I'm curvier.

Melanie Avalon: I remember going to Paris, and the sizes there are like--

Gin Stephens: Really different?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, they're probably more like what it used to be here.

Gin Stephens: Probably what it used to be here in like the 50s or something. [laughs] But sizes have changed so much. And every time I pull out those shorts, it's hilarious. I have a pair of jeans from the GAP that I wore in the early 2000s. It was after I finished having kids and I lost the weight back. It was in the unfortunate diet pills era, but I felt really good in these jeans. They're size 4. No, wait, they're size 6, that was a lie. They're size 6 from the GAP. And they're like mom jeans, and they are big in the waist. I'm smaller now than I was during the diet pill days, but they're hilarious fitting too. And the GAP was just not having good clothes, and I was buying them up apparently. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: For shirts, because I'm a pretty small person but I like all my-- like t-shirts and stuff, I always like extra larges or extra-extra larges. Especially because brands want to send us stuff and they want to send shirts a lot and they're like, “What size?” I'm like, “Extra-large.” They're like--

Gin Stephens: I'm like small.

Melanie Avalon: Every time, Gin. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I don't like them being big.

Melanie Avalon: I don't like being confined. I don't like clothes actually.

Gin Stephens: I don't like feeling confined. But I like things to fit me.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Oh, wait, can I mention one thing since we're talking about clothes? I just got a-- new company from LA, they're making grounding shoes. I am so excited. I can probably get them to send you a pair if it's something you're interested in.

Gin Stephens: I would love to try their shoes.

Melanie Avalon: I will get on that. For listeners, they only make the sandals. But I just got my pair and I'm so excited because what I had been using was these grounding strips, I don't know if they actually work. For those who don't know what we're talking about, it's basically so that when you walk on natural earth, the ions in the earth-- it's something to do with the energy of the earth. And it's not like some woo-woo thing, it's very much real.

Gin Stephens: Well, my husband who's an organic chemist, things have charges. Every time you have static electricity, or thunder, lightning, that's static, that's energy being transferred. So, we know scientifically that energy transfers, that's not woo-woo. It's real, we see it.

Melanie Avalon: And by being on natural earth, it has a very natural healing effect on the body compared to when we're constantly not actually touching the ground. So, it's beneficial to get yourself grounded, which you do by walking outside barefoot. But if you have shoes on, obviously, you're not touching the ground. That's why they made these grounding shoes that they conduct the charge from the earth to your body. So, they're really cool. I got really excited. I'll put a link because I think I have a discount for them too. So, I'll put a link in the show notes to it.

Gin Stephens: Well, the reason I brought up the clothes, in case, everybody's like why are we talking about the GAP clothes from the 90s, the point is that people get so caught up in sizes and it's just meaningless, the way things are sized. I have things in my closet that fit me, zero to four. If I go to my old clothes, six and eight. If you go to a vintage store, sizes are going to be really different. So, you've got to just not worry about the sizes. Easier said than done.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, actually, Gin, we have a question, since we're talking about all of these sizes and what it all means, this wasn't on the lineup for today, but how would you feel if I do a surprise question?

Gin Stephens: That would be awesome. I would love a surprise question.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, because I've been wanting to do this question for a while. So, I feel like it's appropriate right now with everything that we're talking about. Our first question comes from Nicole, the subject is "Product You May Love and Questions." And Nicole says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie, thank you so much for your awesome podcast. Gin, I love your down-to-earth personality. And Melanie, I adore your curious mind. First off, I wanted to share with you a product for your listeners, especially the ones that have a fear of the scale. I own a zero scale. It's a digital scale that sets your weight at zero and tells you up or down pounds. It doesn't reveal your weight. I'm not sure this exact scale is around, but I've seen similar items, and I've attached a link.”

And she attached a link to a scale called Shapa. When we got this email, Gin was like, “I want to talk about this!” So, Gin, would you like to talk about this? I have no idea what this is.

Gin Stephens: Yes, I'm so glad you pulled that one out today because I have a Shapa scale. You know how I said I haven't weighed myself since 2017? Well, it's both true, and now false. It's true that I have no idea what the number is because the Shapa numberless scale does not show you your number. Well, you can set it to show you your number, but I have set mine not to show my number. If you get this scale everybody, do not sync it with Apple Health, or it will show you your number on Apple Health. People are like, “Oh, no, it showed me the number!”

We were just having this conversation, in fact, my moderators today about weight maintenance and the scale going up and down. If you're in maintenance, you're going to be within a weight range, which means that your weight might fluctuate within even a 10-pound range and you're not gaining weight or losing weight. But you get on the scale and it's up five pounds from yesterday, and then you have this panic of, “Am I gaining weight?” “What's happening?” Because we know the only thing that matters is your overall trend.

In all of my books, I wrote about weighing daily, and then once a week, you calculate a weekly average and you only compare the weekly averages, and that will really save your sanity. But you still have to see the fluctuations of like today, you're up five pounds, and it freaks you out a little bit. At least it did me. So, that's why I threw my scale away and I haven't gotten on a scale from 2017 until today. I mean not today, but I mean like the past six weeks. So, over three years, not standing on any kind of scale.

Well, someone told me about the Shapa scale. I've been raving about it in my Facebook groups, but if you go to myshapa.com, it tells you all about it. Now, the creator of this scale, I don't know how to say his last name. His name is Dan Ariely. A-R-I-E-L-Y. That’s how I'm saying it, that could be so wrong if it is, Dan, I'm sorry. He's the creator of Shapa. He actually is a professor of psychology and behavioral economics from Duke University. His TED talks have been viewed over 15 million times. I'm reading this off their website. Now, I just went to it real quick. And he's written three New York Times bestsellers. In 2018, he was named one of the 50 most influential living psychologists in the world.

Okay, so this guy, I wanted to say that to let you know, that he knows what he's doing with psychology. For me, the thought of having a scale with numbers really gives me anxiety because if I got on the scale and I didn't like the number, it would make me want to diet or make me want to do certain things. Any of us who have been obese or overweight, we had this panic that we're going to regain all the weight. Even though I've been maintaining since 2015, seeing a number on a scale could really upset me. It is what it is. So, the scale does not show you a number unless you set it to, it only gives you color feedback.

So, for the first 10 days, you stand on it, and you have to do it twice a day, while it's calibrating, you get on in the morning, you have to have the app open on your smartphone. You get on it, you get off of it, then you do it again in the evening, you get on, you get off. And then after about 10 days-- it could take a few more than 10. It took me 10. You start seeing colors. And the color lets you know what your trend is doing. So, if you get green on your app, that means your weight is maintaining over time. If you get teal, that means you're losing a little weight, you're on a slight downward trend. Blue means you're on a really good solid downward trend. And there's a couple of shades of grey you could get, which shows that your trend is going up.

Now some people are like, “Well, how does that help because what if you got on one day and it was green, and the next day it was gray, and the next day it was blue?” And that's not how it works. So, that wouldn't happen. Remember that Dan is a professor of psychology, so he understands the fluctuations are the problem. He doesn't just give you fluctuating color. It does complicated statistics, and it only shows you what your actual trend with all this complicated math is doing. So, if you get on, it's not going to just give you random fluctuation colors. So, that's why-- I've just loved getting on it. It coincided with the month that I had first given up drinking for a month, no alcohol for a month. So, I actually the first color I got was green the first day based on my calibration. But then after that, I've been slowly teal. I've been slowly losing some weight, some of the bloat that I guess I put on over the increased baking and drinking of the pandemic. The only change I've made is not drinking and I've been on a solid teal. So, I'm losing a little bit of that pandemic fluff that may have come on. But that's the thing that's so fabulous for me. I don't have any nervousness about stepping on it. I'm not worried, even if it showed me gray, just showed my trend was going up, I would be like, “Alright, time to reverse this trend,” but it's different than that number.

So, anyway, if anyone's interested, go to myshapa.com. And I actually have partnered with them because I love them so much. As soon as I read about it, I got it. And then, I started badgering them with emails till they finally returned my email. And I'm like, “I really, really, really want to have a relationship with y'all for my podcast because I think that this could be life-changing.” There are a lot of people like me that are absolutely terrified of the scale and don't want to see that number. It might be crazy. Maybe if I was 100% healthy, I wouldn't care but there's still that emotion tied up in it. Dan, the behavioral psychologist degrees, a lot of people really don't do well with that. So, if you go to myshapa.com and you use the promo code 'IFSTORIES,' which is associated with my Intermittent Fasting Stories podcast with the program, you sign up for their program, and it's like a yearly subscription to their app, but then they send you the scale for free, you save $30 on the program.

And after the year is over, the year that you've signed up for, you do not have to renew, and you can continue to use the app. It doesn't stop working. You don't have to renew. Anyway, it's super awesome. And I am weighing on it every day. I don't know how much I weigh, but I don't need to.

Melanie Avalon: That is really cool. I had never heard of this before. So, what does it look like? Does it look like a normal scale?

Gin Stephens: It doesn't have a window. It just it's like a round disc and it has like these little silver crescents that you step on. And so, you step on them and it reads what's happening. It also claims that it is reporting the changes in your body composition, not just your raw weight. So, if you're building muscle but losing fat, it should adjust for that, I think, based on what I've read, because it's checking your whole body composition and looking for positive changes. It does not reveal what the colors mean, as far as how much you're losing. It just shows you the overall trend, but I'm really enjoying it. From someone who said, “I'll never have a scale again,” I've got it.

The whole time I've gone through menopause-- by the way, I am two weeks away from officially being able to say, “I'm done with menopause,” or through it on the other side, because you have to go a year. But you worry-- when you have lost over 80 pounds, you worry that one day maybe it's going to be menopause, maybe it's going to be too much wine, but all of a sudden, you're going to balloon back up again and gain all the weight back. So, now, for the rest of my life, I'll be able to get on the scale and not have that fear of, “Oh no. Am I secretly gaining weight?” or “My pants a little tight.” I'll know.

Melanie Avalon: Well, actually, to your point, Nicole, the follow-up sentence where she says, “I have anxiety about numbers, and this has been life-saving.”

Gin Stephens: Yeah, she's got the zero scale. And I don't know that tells you whether you're up or down pounds. I don't know that I'd like that. Because remember, if I got on it, and it said, “You're up five pounds,” I think I would start to cry. I wouldn't like my scale telling me I was up five pounds or down two pounds. I don't want to hear any numbers, which is why I like Shapa so much. I don't hear numbers. I don't hear anything. I just only see that nice little blue or the teal or the green. And I don't even know.

Melanie Avalon: I wonder if it tells you the actual pound or if it just is like up.

Gin Stephens: I wouldn't want to hear up. It feels like to me you would get on and it would just tell you whether you were up or down. I just know me. I weighed for the first year of maintenance, I weighed, but every time I got on and it was up, I panicked in my brain, even though I was like, “All right. It's okay.” Every time I saw up, it made me feel, “Ugh.” And when it went down, I was like, “Ooh.” But not even having to know the fluctuations, just knowing what the overall trend is doing, it's just a breath of fresh air. Anyway, to get me to have a scale again is pretty incredible. And the company's been great. So, I'm a huge fan. And my shapa.com, promo code 'IFSTORIES.'

Melanie Avalon: Awesome.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, you should get one too.

Melanie Avalon: You actually convinced me. I'm pretty sure I'm going to go get one right now.

Gin Stephens: And then you could see what's happening. But you don't have to worry about the number.

Melanie Avalon: I like colors too.

Gin Stephens: I like colors too. They have one that's like white, that's the one I got. It's like a wood-tone white. And then, they have like a grayish-blackish white, and then they have an oaky-- no, the black is just not white, I don’t know why I said white. It's a blackish wood-tone grayish-blackish. Anyway, white, black, wood tone, but they all have wood graining. It looks really pretty in the bathroom.

Melanie Avalon: Can I say one thing about colors just because it made me think of it?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: Yesterday, I saw a rainbow and I think I literally contemplate the nature of rainbows for an hour. I was googling and reading all about rainbows. And then, I was reading about linguistic relativity, which is my new favorite thing.

Gin Stephens: I don't even know what that is.

Melanie Avalon: I think we've actually talked about it before. It's the idea that we can only understand things we have words for. So, different cultures can see different colors based on what words they have colors for.

Gin Stephens: Wow, that's cool.

Melanie Avalon: It's really cool. And then my mind was being blown, I was like, “Wait, so what colors can I see that other people can't see?” [laughs] Because we don't have a word for it.

Gin Stephens: And then, there's the wrinkle of-- I've talked about before, I guess, Chad having that weird colorblindness. Remember me talking about that? Or did I? How he can't see? He's got blue-yellow colors, I'm crazy, I don't know I'd never heard of. We've all heard of red-green colorblindness, but I had never heard it. Well, I assume we all have. I had never heard of the blue yellow. It's driving me crazy though, Melanie. He sees things so differently. We got some art, and he can't see it. I'm like, “What is your problem? It's beautiful. It looks perfect." And he's like, “No," I want him to see and love the environment that he lives in too, so that's what's hard. I'm not dealing with someone who sees it properly. I am having to make my house look good to someone who sees it differently than me because I care about how he feels in the home. That's tricky.

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All right, now back to the show.

Well, back to Nicole's question.

Gin Stephens: Anyway, I was so excited when I read that question when it said Shapa, the link that she gave to Shapa numberless scale, I was like, “What?”

Melanie Avalon: Just for listeners. I go through and categorize all the questions and occasionally, Gin will pop in her thoughts. And if it's really important to her, she makes it very known. So, with this one, she was like, “I was just so excited.” She's like, “I must talk about this.” So, yeah. From the rest of Nicole's email, she says, “Now to my fasting question. I've mostly stayed at an average weight since puberty, but always struggled to lose 20 pounds, which would put my five-foot-six frame at around 130, 135. I've gone up and down with those 20 pounds throughout my life, but around four years ago, I was able to get to 133 effortlessly, I am 42. The only thing I changed at the time that I can remember was eating more lentils and broccoli. Lol.

A year and a half ago, I got two tooth infections, had to have wisdom teeth removed and a root canal. The wisdom tooth surgery was a coronectomy, awful pain, and I basically lived with clove essential oil in my mouth for two months. The root canal was regular, but I had to go on antibiotics for prevention. I'm pretty sure I'll be doing holistic dentistry from now on. After these instances, weight crept on and I was back up to 155 even though no eating habits had changed. I had tried all my tricks of the past, but nothing worked.

After a trial with keto, which did not end successfully, I came across IF and started studying the science behind it. That's where I found all three of your podcasts. Happy to report I started IF in February of this year, I'm fasting completely clean and I can easily do a window of 16 to 20 hours, give or take that awful mid-March to May time, I've noted many non-scale victories. Rosacea is gone, aches are gone, energy, etc. But I've not lost weight. I had an awful time in the beginning, which is what I think was my body detoxing, awful menstruation, skin issues, etc. But it all worked itself out. I'm eating less than I ever have now and healthier. My diet is well rounded, 90% clean, organic, wheat, dairy, and egg-free by choice. I'm incredibly in tune with my body and I know something is still missing even with all the health benefits.

I also have hypothyroid and I am working on finding a new endocrinologist who do extensive testing since my current doctor will not run these tests. I can't find anyone local to run proper and extensive hormone testing, but I'm trying to find a telehealth doctor. I will continue to investigate these issues. But can there be anything I'm missing from my teeth incidents that can clue you to what path I should take, considering as when I saw a huge change in weight to happen so quickly? I've cut alcohol during the week, lowered carbs, changed windows meditated, tapped, and tried changing what I ate, bought a glucose monitor to track as well. I feel like I'm obsessing but getting this under control especially since losing this weight before menopause is very important to me.

Any help, advice is appreciated. If patience is key, I'll get there. I haven't done ADF. Can't seem to get there. But if that is what it takes… You both to me are masterminds at figuring these things out. I'm hoping you give me some suggestions as to what to do. I am celebrating the non-scale victories and the health benefits but losing weight to me, especially since I know I was at that 135 range for a long time, is very important. Thank you so much for all you guys do. You are my favorite podcast to listen to and are a super team. XOXO. Nicole, from New Jersey.”

Gin Stephens: Well, Nicole, it is great to hear from you. And that struggle, I can totally understand when you've been maintaining for your whole life. Even though you had to go up and down a little bit, you could always get there, and then all of a sudden, nothing is working. And I think it's great that you can pinpoint that turning point when you had that dental work, and you had to go on to antibiotics for prevention. We hear that kind of thing a lot. People have a turning point with their health. Often, it involves some medication. Sometimes, it might be steroids. For you, it was antibiotics. And that causes something in your body to change and then all of a sudden, your weight is really different on the other side of that event.

I've talked before about a friend of mine who had food poisoning. And then after that, she could not keep the weight on, she could not maintain her weight. Her weight just went down and down and down and down for like forever. She was getting skinnier and skinnier and trying to eat more, trying to put the weight on, and she could not. I tell this story again to illustrate that that affected her gut microbiome, and something in there shifted. And so, whatever that population was, she could not use her food properly and she could not gain the weight at all. She had to really work. It took her, I don't know, over a year to rebuild her gut microbiome and get her health back to where she could maintain what was a healthy weight for her.

I would really think about focusing on rebuilding your gut microbiome. I understand the importance of it, but I am not a gut microbiome rebuilding expert. Dr. Ruscio. How do you say it? Michael Ruscio, is that his name?

Melanie Avalon: Dr. Michael Ruscio. Healthy Gut, Healthy You.

Gin Stephens: Healthy Gut, Healthy You, that was the name of the book. He came on our podcast, gosh, was it 2017 or 2018?

Melanie Avalon: It was a while ago. I had him on mine too since then. But, yeah, he's great.

Gin Stephens: He's great. His book lays out some different things to try because his goal is to get your gut back to where it needs to be building things back up. I believe it can be done after watching my friend go through that, and how she was able to heal. But it's really, really important. A lot of it is trial and error. Do you have anything to add about that?

Melanie Avalon: That was exactly what I was going to say. The gut microbiome plays such a huge role. And it really can for so many people, I think, be the defining factor in making this shift between struggling with your weight or not, struggling with your weight. I'm actually reading a book right now. Have you heard of Joel Greene?

Gin Stephens: I don't think so.

Melanie Avalon: I heard him on Ben Greenfield’s podcast, and it was like a two-part podcast. The stuff he was saying was like the most mind-blowing stuff ever. I think I talked about him briefly on this podcast. He was saying how all the problems with yo-yo dieting and how losing weight-- was it losing or gaining weight? How one of those actually damages the fat cells or damages your body to lose and gain weight. In any case, I'm reading his book right now, and I just started it, and it's a doozy.

Gin Stephens: What's it called?

Melanie Avalon: It's called The Immunity Guide. Like I said, just started it, but his theory is that all of this goes back to our immune cells, and how they're reacting to things and whether it's inflammatory or noninflammatory, and that the gut microbiome plays a role in that. Apparently, this book has a whole plan to fix it. The reason I brought it up is that when there are foundational shifts in the body, it's hard to know what's what. But the shift itself can create change, like with the microbiome, how your body reacts to all of that can change. So, you might start having chronic inflammation and reactions to everything whereas you did before. It's really hard to lose weight in an inflamed state, it's a lot harder.

In any case, I like what Gin said. I would say something to focus on-- especially since you don't want to go like the ADF route, I do think focusing on the gut microbiome would be the way to go. The cool thing is there's not one answer to that. People will say there's one answer, don't we know that? But people seemingly “fix their microbiome” or get it back to a healthy state on a variety of diets. Some people feel they do that through a keto approach, some people through a higher-carb approach. That's why I do really love Dr. Ruscio’s Healthy Gut, Healthy You because it's like a choose your own adventure. He goes through the science of everything and then a plan, but it's not one plan. Pretty much every other book out there is one plan.

Gin Stephens: Right. Like, “Here is the one thing that's wrong with everyone, just do this.”

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And do this plan. So, occasionally, it'll be like, “Oh, maybe skip this step or this step.” But his is very much like, “If you're this, start here. If you're this, start here. Then when this happens, go here.” So, it's very individualized.

Gin Stephens: Yes. And which was what I loved about it.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. It's also almost macronutrient agnostic. He does talk about how a lot of people do need to start at low carb just because they can't tolerate the carbs because of all the dysbiosis or their metabolic health or whatever. But he's very much like about finding the carb level that works for the individual. And so, it's all different carb approaches as well. So, yeah, we'll put a link to it in the show notes. I would say definitely, definitely probably try that out. And it's so great that you are experiencing all these other great non-scale victories. Which actually, to that point, I think I've said something a little bit misleading because I was saying it's really hard to gain weight if you're in a constantly inflamed state, but other non-scale victories indicate to me inflammation is going down because your rosacea has gone, aches are gone, energy, etc. So, that's really exciting. Sounds like your body's really benefiting from this. I do think with tweaks and patience even like she says, you could definitely find your way.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. And there's also the other factors that-- she's hypothyroid is also an issue. That could be something too. It all kind of just goes together.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm really glad, actually, that you pointed out the hypothyroid thing. I totally meant to talk about that, because that could definitely be huge. She does say that she's working on finding a new endocrinologist since her doctor won't run the tests. Well, she sounds like she's aware about the tests that are needed. Nicole, you can check out our interview with Elle Russ, All About The Thyroid. But, yeah, if you're not on the right dose for thyroid medication or don't have that address, then it can definitely be really hard to lose weight. But, in any case, it really sounds like you are on the right track. You're seeing lots of benefits, non-scale victories like we talked about. And I really think that patience like you said and trying some things, and I'm sure you can get there.

Gin Stephens: And also thinking about ADF, if you wanted to try an up-down day approach that's more of a mild up-down day-- you could do a one-hour window, and then more of a long window the next day, and then a one-hour window. So, it's not like full-on ADF but you're giving it that up and down-ish pattern. So, try that and see.

Melanie Avalon: I love it. All right. Shall we go on to our next question?

Gin Stephens: Yes. All right. So, the next question is from Sheree. And the subject is "BiOptimizer Confusion. “I am doing IF and it is going slowly, but steadily. Listening to your podcasts is a good inspiration and motivation for me. My question is on the BiOptimizer products. I would like to add in a product one at a time, but don't know where to start or what is best for me. I am 60, fairly healthy. Sugar’s a bit high but coming down. I sleep okay. I'm fairly calm. From the podcasts and all the reading I have done on their products, it sounds like I may benefit from several products, but my primary focus should start with helping to lose weight. What would be your thoughts? Thanks, Sheree.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Sheree. So, fantastic question. Definitely, if you're not in my Facebook group, IF Biohackers, definitely join there, because people talk about BiOptimizers like every single day. But I know it can be confusing because they have a lot of supplements. And for listeners, we've had Wade and Matt, the founders on the podcast, what like three times now? Two or three times?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I think it's three.

Melanie Avalon: Three? I think so.

Gin Stephens: We had Wade by himself. Then we had them both together. Did we have Wade by himself twice? I know we've had him together twice. I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: I think we had them both together twice and Wade-- we might have had them four times. I don't know. We've had them a lot.

Gin Stephens: I just love them, though because they coexist with such different dietary regimens and acknowledge that we're all different. Those are my favorite people.

Melanie Avalon: Yes, because Wade is like plant-based vegetarian-- I think he's still vegetarian. And Matt is like keto, like carnivore at times. They're like complete opposites. But they realize that our bodies are so unique. Their main thing is that the root of a lot of issues are in the gut, which is what we were talking about earlier. And that addressing that and getting our digestion order can be so huge for just everything and performance, health, everything. I remember Wade made a comment on-- I think when we interviewed him, and it's something that has like, stuck with me to this day. And he said, “People confuse the results with the change.” And this has haunted me, but it was basically the idea that oftentimes people will make a drastic dietary change, and they'll lose weight or things will get better. But then, they'll plateau or things will even get worse. But they think because all of the results happened when they made that drastic dietary change, they think that dietary change was the answer. When really, it was most likely-- it was probably pulling something out of their diet or adding something in. That actual paradigm shift wasn't like the be-all end-all. But the quote has just haunted me to this day.

In any case, so for the confusion, because they do make a lot of stuff. So, none of their stuff is like a weight loss thing because they're not like a weight loss pill. Like I said, it's more holistic. If the reason you're struggling with your weight or struggling with your health is because you're not digesting things, for example, they make digestive enzymes. They can help you digest your food. They make P3OM, it's a probiotic. It's a proteolytic strain, meaning, actually breaks down protein, has antiviral properties. It's one of the few probiotics-- Actually, it's probably like the only probiotic I consistently will take or turn to. I could also probably recommend it for Nicole as well. So, I'll put links to that in show notes. They make a keto supplement called kApex for people doing ketogenic diets. Somebody actually just posted in my Facebook group the other day about it. They were like, “This is a game-changer.”

Gin Stephens: In what way?

Melanie Avalon: I guess they were doing keto for a long time, and not digesting their food well or not feeling energy from the keto diet. And they started taking it and they said that they were digesting food better, that they had amazing energy, and that it was the answer to making the keto diet work for them, which is the reason they make that supplement. And then, they make magnesium because magnesium is super important for stress. It's one of the one-- I don't want to say one of the one because the book I'm reading right now is talking about how we're depleted in all micronutrients. But it's probably one of the primary nutrients that we really need more of, and we just don't get enough of because of our modern soils and modern food. So, they make a really comprehensive magnesium supplement that, again, in my group, people talk about all the time about just being a game-changer. But, Sheree, so none of them are to help you lose weight. They're to help you get your body back into balance so that you can lose weight naturally.

Anyway, definitely join my Facebook group and ask your question there, because people will give you lots of opinions and you can probably get more specific answers.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. And it really just depends on issues that you're having and what you need. We don't all need the same supplements. We don't all need everything that BiOptimizer sells. You might need one of their things or two of their things, or zero of their things. But don't feel like, “Well, I've got to get their entire catalog of things.” So, you have to figure out what do you need. I've told this story before, maybe not everyone has heard it. But a friend of mine takes some supplement and she was like, “This supplement is the one that's changed my life.” And then I was like, “Oh, maybe I should try that. I would like to change my life.” And I started taking it, and it made me feel worse and worse and worse. And then, I started researching it and it is based on like a genetic thing that she's got and I don't, and it was the wrong supplement for me. So, never take a supplement just because someone else is having great results with, it might be totally wrong for you.

Melanie Avalon: And we talked about this last week, Gin. I'm more and more of the opinion of minimal supplements, less supplements rather than more. I would prefer 100% that we could just get all of our nutrients from food and never need a supplement ever again. That's why actually if you look at what BiOptimizers makes, it's not actually-- with the exception of magnesium, which is a nutrient, their main thing is digestive enzymes and HCl. So, it's something that is helping you digest your food.

Gin Stephens: It supports digestion.

Melanie Avalon: But in a dream world, nobody would need digestive support because they could just radically digest everything. But a lot of us do because of our gut situation, the foods we're eating, our environment. Our vagus nerve is just all out of whack. So, that can be really helpful. And then, the other one they make probiotic which is different than like a nutrient per se. Like I said, the only really nutrient they do is magnesium. I think they have a mineral supplement. In a dream world, we would not need any. Although I will say, I plucked this last week, but, Gin, I'm taking NR and NMN again, and I swear it's changing my life. Like, why did I stop?

Gin Stephens: And I'm pretty simple. I just take my magnesium at bedtime. There's one multivitamin that I take it with my dinner and that's it. And really, it's because I do try to eat a wide variety of foods and hope to get everything I need for my foods. But it's a really good high-quality multivitamin. They actually sponsor my podcast. So, other than that, though, that's pretty much it.

Melanie Avalon: I'm excited because I'm about to interview, and I mentioned this last time, but Caltons who Rebuild Your Bones. Although now, they have me worried because they're talking about studies where apparently, there was one study where they challenged dietitians to make a diet in different categories, I don't know what it was. I think one was Atkins and one was DASH-- I don't know there's different ones and they were challenged to make a diet that would fulfill like all micronutrients and be “palatable,” which may be the key, maybe that's the key, but be “palatable” and be a certain amount of calories and none of the dietitians could do it. I was like, “Oh, that's disconcerting.” So, yeah,

Hi friends. You guys know I'm always working on naturally managing stress levels. Life can be a little bit stressful these days, don't I know it, and I'm always trying to find the best tools to address that. While I love things like meditation, mindfulness, vagus nerve treatment, and all of that, it turns out there's a supplement that can be incredible for stress and anxiety, also pain and sleeplessness, and a lot of other things.

That would be CBD oil. CBD oil is so incredible because it works on your natural endocannabinoid system to regulate it. It's not making you need more of the substance to feel better. Rather, it's helping you feel better naturally. There's no high, no hangover, no addiction. I think it is so wonderful that CBD is becoming available to the public now, but the problem with that is that it's sort of everywhere and that means there's a lot of CBD products on the market that you don't want to be taking. It's really important, in my opinion, that your CBD meets all of my stringent criteria that it's high quality, full spectrum, tested for potency, organic and made with an organic MCT oil carrier.

Would you believe I've only found one company that fits all of that? That would be Feals. I adore Feals. It's almost shocking if I feel a little bit of tension rising or some stress getting to me, I can take Feals and within minutes, I will feel a sense of calm, and often be laughing. It's really, really crazy. Feals is premium CBD delivered directly to your doorstep. I will never not have Feals in my “medicine cabinet,” because it's that effective.

And they have an incredible offer for our listeners. This offer is just insane. So, you can actually become a member and get 50% off your first order. Yes, 50% off, not making that up. Just go to feals.com/ifpodcast to become a member and get 50% automatically taken off your first order with free shipping. Feals really has me feeling my best every day and it can help you too. Again, feals.com/ifpodcast to become a member and get 50% automatically taken off your first order with free shipping. And, by the way, you can pause or cancel that membership at any time. So, don't worry, this doesn't have to be a commitment, although you'll probably find yourself reordering because it's that amazing. Again, feals.com/ifpodcast.

All right, now back to the show.

Melanie Avalon: In any case, shall we go on to our next question?

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, we have a question from Laura. The subject is "Weekend Sabotage." Laura says, “Hi ladies. so thankful I found you. What When Wine started all this for me. Feeling great but would love to lean out but crave tough workouts and that muscular look. Would you be able to explain what effect alcohol on the weekends is doing to my body? I will be honest, I am not just having a glass of wine on the weekends on my up days, definitely more than that. But wondering what the science is behind alcohol on the weekends.

Here's a typical week for me. I've been IFing since March of 2019. Monday through Thursday, one meal a day, 24, always a whole30 meal. It is a struggle on Monday though, but I power through. Friday, I fast, till we go out around six but eat and drink whatever I want breakfast, lunch, and dinner but smaller portions because I know I'll be eating three meals, not whole30 until Sunday afternoon around 2:00 PM, then have a healthy dinner whole30. I work out four to five days a week including rowing, running, Peloton, and weights, a variation of these options all week. Plus, walk the dogs four to five times a week, one to two miles a day.

I'm totally stuck. I'm not losing weight. I am at a healthy weight, but definitely squishy in the middle. I read Fast. Feast. Repeat. and I think I will try Some Things Out of the Toolbox with messing around with the length of my window and up and down days. But I'm still curious what my Friday nights to Sunday afternoon is doing scientifically, glycogen stores, insulin, etc. I've also been listening to Melanie talk about Siim Land and muscle building tips. I check my activity with my Apple Watch and it says I burn 2200 to 2500 calories a day, which I don't think I'm eating one meal a day. So, I recently added last week a protein shake to open my window to help get more protein in during my eating window. I'm five feet five inches, 45 years old, newly retired middle schoolteacher, Gin. My hubby and I typically don't drink during the week Monday through Thursday. I weigh on Friday mornings and it takes me till Thursday the next week to get back to where I started. Ugh! Thank you for all your research. I admire both of your passions for health and educating people. Hugs from So Cal.” I have so many thoughts about this question.

Gin Stephens: Me too. And to be honest with you, I'm just going to say, Laura, you've probably heard me talk about-- I don't know when this came in, in relation to what I've been talking about my month of no alcohol and it's extending because I just feel so much better. Did I talk last time, Melanie, about how I drank for my PREDICT study and then couldn't sleep and felt terrible?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I don't think I connected it to the PREDICT study, but yeah.

Gin Stephens: Okay. Oh, that's why I wanted to see what it did on my blood glucose meter. So, I did it for science and then I felt awful again and--

Melanie Avalon: Oh yeah. Yeah, you did.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I thought so. Basically, Laura, what just rocked my world recently was realizing that I am a slow alcohol metabolizer. I talk about in Fast. Feast. Repeat. how when I was trying to get to my initial goal weighed in 2015, I delayed alcohol. It was about a 10-week period. I was almost at my goal, and I wanted to lose, I think it was 20 more pounds to get there so I could buy all my spring clothes and just be that size and not have to buy different clothes, and spring was coming. So, I delayed alcohol, meaning I didn't have any alcohol at all. And I also delayed ultra-processed foods and I ate just whole foods, real foods, plenty of carbs, but real potatoes, real beans, lots of butter or sour cream cheese, just real food. And I lost about two pounds a week. Thinking back on that, now that I understand that I'm a slow alcohol metabolizer, it really like it takes my body days after drinking to get back to a good fat-burning state. And you might say, “Well, how do you know that?”

Well, I went the whole month without any alcohol at all and then I tested a couple glasses of wine at the beach with Chad. I'm using this breath ketone monitor that Melanie had them send me to play around with, and I can 100% see that it takes my body a while to get back into ketosis when I've had alcohol. So, one big thing that jumps out at me is what you said how it's a struggle every Monday, but you power through. So, that indicates, if you're sluggish and struggling-- yeah, I always just assumed it was I'd refilled my glycogen storage. I just assumed that. But now I realized that-- even when I was at the beach with Chad, I didn't eat all that much. I waited till late in the day, I didn't have longer, relaxed vacation windows. Chad doesn't like to pay for a lot of money to go out to eat. So, we ate at the condo, which made him really happy. And I like to cook, so that was fine. I didn't mind. So, it wasn't like I had eaten a lot and refilled my glycogen stores. But then, the same thing happened from just two glasses of wine. It took me a few days to really get back to normal.

So, I would like to challenge you to delay alcohol, give it a month. I just want you to see. You'll know at the end of that month if it's making a difference or not, see how you feel on Monday. Don't change the weekend eating, just the drinking. And I want you to try that experiment and then write back and let us know. I'm just so curious if it might be as huge for you as it is for me. I knew that it made a difference for me when I was losing weight. Now, I have a hunch as to why. I haven't been able to find a lot of science out there, a lot of people writing about this idea of this-- the whole idea of being a fast alcohol metabolizer, slow metabolizer, whatever. But I think it could be an issue for a lot of people that maybe don't realize it.

Melanie Avalon: This is funny because I'm probably gonna say almost the exact opposite thing. But I think it's great because it's a lot of different approaches and we're all so different. So, I'll give you another perspective, Laura, maybe we can try it all out and see what works for you personally because like Gin said, we're all different. When I read this, I see that you're doing one meal a day, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. Then, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, so not even one day, but the weekend, like she says, “Weekend Sabotage.”

Gin Stephens: Well, she fasts till 6:00 PM on Friday.

Melanie Avalon: Okay. So, Friday normal and then Saturday all day. And then, I'm assuming alcohol on Saturday. And then, Sunday--

Gin Stephens: She eats from 2:00 till dinner. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: So, still eating. Saturday and Sunday. Alcohol added on Friday, assuming alcohol on Saturday evening, and then eating basically all day Saturday and Sunday.

Gin Stephens: Well, Sunday, she fasts until Sunday afternoon around 2:00 and then have a healthy dinner. I'm not really sure what she does on Sunday. Sunday's confusing.

Melanie Avalon: She drinks whatever I want breakfast, lunch, dinner, because [unintelligible [00:53:57] eating three meals until Sunday afternoon around 2:00 and then have a healthy dinner. Oh, it sounds like she does that non-whole30 from all day, Saturday, Sunday, but then she jumps back into whole30 Sunday evening. That's how I'm reading it.

Gin Stephens: Well, yeah, she does say Friday night to Sunday afternoon later. So, you're right, that she does say that later. Friday night through Sunday afternoon.

Melanie Avalon: When I see this, I see Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, whole30, one meal a day. Then Friday, one meal a day, but alcohol, and then eating-- completely changing what you're eating and eating all day, Saturday, anything all day Sunday with alcohol throughout on the weekend. So, just seeing that objectively, the thing that really jumps out to me isn't the alcohol. It's the massive change in the food. It could be just the alcohol. Just like stepping back and this is like a crazy thought experiment and this is not meant to be taken literally. But if for example, you ate what you'd normally eat whole30 but all you did was add alcohol-- and don't do this, it's not I'm saying-- I'm going to extremes, just think about this. Even if you added like thousands and thousands and thousands of calories of alcohol to your preexisting whole30, you wouldn't store any of that alcohol. It wouldn't be healthy and would not be a good thing to do. But that's not actually going to create weight loss. Compared to eating thousands and thousands of calories, which we don't know if you're doing but switching from whole30 to eating whatever you want, especially with our modern processed food, it's really easy to take in a lot of calories, especially if you're in this mindset of weekends, like no whole30, like go big or go home. And you're not just going big or going home one day, which can often be really helpful, especially for people fasting every single day, one meal a day and then having an off day, but this is sort of starting on a Friday night, going in all day, Saturday, continuing Sunday, and not going back to normal until Sunday. So, that's a long time to switch your food choices from noninflammatory whole foods that even if say they're the same amount of calories of more processed foods, you probably extract less calories from them. This is a huge food shift is what I'm seeing. And on top of that, if whole30 is anti-inflammatory for you, that inflammation from food can also lead to a lot of weight gain, just from water retention and things like that.

So, what I would encourage you, alcohol could be playing-- It's ironic, I was even thinking it's possible that alcohol might even be slightly protective of weight gain because some people with alcohol actually are less likely to gain weight, some more likely but results are all over the board. And, yes, it was a rodent study, but my mind is still just being blown by that rodent study I read recently that came out this year pretty recently about rodents fed diets meant to make them gain weight and when they had alcohol with it, they didn't experience the metabolic issues that they did when they weren't having alcohol.

So, my advice would be to change just one variable to determine what the cause is. Well, there are a lot of ways you could go about this. Basically, what this is saying to me is you can't have your cake and eat it too. I don't think you can continue in this pattern if you want to not gain weight or not have to take-- it says it takes her until Thursday to get back to normal. If you want to break out of this pattern, something's going to have to change. So, you can try a lot of things. You can try cutting out the alcohol and still eating the same and see what happens. You might start losing weight, you might not change, you might even gain more weight. You could try still eating three meals and eating all time but keeping it whole30 foods that would be like a happy medium even with alcohol. Maybe that's like a baby step to try. Like still doing it but not just eating whatever you want but eating whole30 but eating whenever you want whole30 with alcohol. You could try maybe still doing one meal a day eating whatever foods you want but adding alcohol. There are a lot of things you could try, but I wouldn't jump to the conclusion automatically that it's the alcohol. I think it's all of it together.

Gin Stephens: And for me, I would like to reiterate, I would try the alcohol first. It just from what I've learned about my own body. Also, alcohol makes me choose different foods. That's a point that-- you may find that just cutting out the alcohol for a month suddenly, you're not craving eating and drinking all those things. That would be what I would start with. But let us know what you do and what works.

Melanie Avalon: One last thought is taking in a lot of alcohol, obviously not good for the liver, you don't want to be overdrinking and binge-drinking and heavy drinking, that's not going to be healthy. That said, the long-term effects on body weight or fat storage or things like that are not necessarily-- because we don't know what she's eating, but she's eating whatever she wants and it is things like processed food, especially foods high and seed oils, high in inflammatory fats, and in a calorie excess and in a gaining weight situation, those fats are changing the composition of your fat cells if you're gaining weight. Actually, even not if you're gaining weight, if it's high in these inflammatory fats, it's a long-term change. A long-term thing you're going to have to deal with, compared to the short-term change of alcohol. There's just a lot more potential for “long-term damage,” I think. Unless you're binge-drinking crazy and you get psoriasis or something like that.

Gin Stephens: Well, for me, just realizing two glasses of wine one night kept me from getting into deep ketosis for days, versus I can eat more carbs and plenty of foods-- and my diet’s not as clean as yours by any means. I eat crackers out of a box. I'm sure I'm getting-- you would probably die at the number of seed oils I have. And the alcohol has made a huge difference for me to the point that I'm a little shocked by it. I'm surprised at what a big difference it's made. I'm disappointed that my body doesn't do well with alcohol because I really enjoy it, but I'm feeling so good without it.

Melanie Avalon: No, I 100% get it. I guess I just like to provide the other picture. Like I said, we know everybody's unique. So definitely, Laura, try it and report back and let us know what works. I just think if you can have alcohol in your life, especially looking at epidemiological studies, so many long live populations who are lean, healthy, have moderate alcohol intake, if it can be a part of your life and it's something you enjoy, I want it to be part of your life. And I guess I'm coming from the opposite perspective where I was drinking a lot of wine for a long time and it was not an issue at all for my weight, and then I cut it out-- I actually did gain weight when I cut it out, probably wasn't related. But now, I'm finally starting to drink wine again, and I'm so happy.

Gin Stephens: And you're a fast alcohol metabolizer, right?

Melanie Avalon: I think so. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. So, see, I really think that that is a key that people-- I don't think we know yet. I haven't been able to find anything. Maybe somebody knows. I just don't know. But to me, I really think that could be a huge factor. If someone is a slow alcohol metabolizer that maybe like the thing that's holding them back. I just know what a difference it's made for me all along, and the period of time when I lost weight the quickest was the period of time I wasn't drinking at all. But recently, the only thing I made, the only change I've made is alcohol. I haven't changed what I'm eating. And my Shapa is showing me slow weight loss.

Melanie Avalon: That's a huge key. The only thing you changed was alcohol. She's changing so much. She's changing the types of foods, the amount, the timing, and alcohol, that's four.

Gin Stephens: No, but I mean, but she's maintaining in this range she's with this protocol. What she's doing right now, is she can't lose any weight, she's doing this protocol. And her protocol is she eats really, really clean and then she stops for the weekend. But my point of what I was saying was, I haven't changed what I'm eating. I only took out alcohol before when I was losing two pounds a week when I was trying to get to goal, I changed what I was eating and the alcohol. So, but now, my point was to-- I'm trying to contrast those two times. Right now, I only took out the alcohol. I didn't change what I'm eating.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I get what you're saying. Yeah, so I was talking about something else. You were saying that that was the only factor, so it was the factor.

Gin Stephens: For me, back in 2015. I took out alcohol and changed what I was eating. So, I was eating really high-quality foods and not drinking, and I lost weight really quickly. Right now, I haven't changed what I've been eating from what I've been eating for the past year, I've been eating-- I did experiment with the lower fat a long time back this year just to see, but I feel better with more fat, but the only thing I've changed in the past two months is the alcohol.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because I guess because she changed four factors. She added alcohol, she's changing what she eats, how much she eats, and when she eats.

Gin Stephens: But what I'm saying is she needs to pick something to experiment with and pick one variable right now.

Melanie Avalon: So, change one variable, it's like what speaks to you. And you can try different things, so I was going to say if you want to try to start just change a few variables, You have to like look at your week-- So, what is important to you on the weekends that you want to keep in to make the weekend feel like a weekend. Is it the alcohol? Is it eating whatever type of food you want? Is it when you eat? Or is it how much you eat? Or is it a combination of those? And I would really think about it and try to find a happy medium where you can keep in what's most important to you and what makes you happiest on the weekends. But not doing all four of those because all four of those is not working.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Well, definitely, I want Laura to experiment and then write back and tell us what she tried and what worked.

Melanie Avalon: Yes. Let us know.

Gin Stephens: Because you'll figure it out. There's a tweak that works.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, and we have to mention though, if you do drink alcohol, Dry Farm Wines. Please, please.

Gin Stephens: I'm a big believer too. I'm going to continue to drink alcohol here and there just not as part of my daily life. I'm not going to be a drink around the house kind of person, I don't think. But it's going to be Dry Farm because now Chad is also hooked on it.

Melanie Avalon: I just got my sister hooked on it. I'm so excited.

Gin Stephens: Chad's a believer.

Melanie Avalon: I want to get my dad hooked on it because that's where I get my love of wine from and he's not like alcoholic or anything but he drinks wine every night. And I'm just like, “Oh, I need to get him drinking Dry Farm Wines.” Basically, their wines are low sugar, low alcohol. They're tested to be free of toxins, free of mold. They grow all throughout Europe. There's no California wines or US wines because none of the US wines meet their standards. That's how pervasive pesticides are in the US, which is really upsetting, even on organic farms. So, they go throughout Europe and they test individually all the wineries to find wines meeting their standards, even if the wineries don't necessarily have an organic stamp. So, you can get a bottle for a penny at dryfarmwines.com/ifpodcast.

Gin Stephens: You have to get used to it because it's so different than wine you're used to but once you get used to it, you'll drink a standard wine and you're like, “Oh.” At first, when you try Dry Farm Wines, you're going to say, “This is different,” but it has a cleaner mouthfeel, it's so different. And one thing I want to point out, it's lower alcohol than standard ones, but it's still enough alcohol to bother me if I drink too much of it, or to drink it a lot.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, all of their wine is 12.5% or less. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. You can ask your own questions to us just directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. The show notes for today's episode, which we talked about a lot of things, so definitely check those out, the scale, the grounding shoes, Dry Farm Wines, studies, all the things. That will be at ifpodcast.com/182. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @IFPodcast. You can follow me, I'm at @MelanieAvalon. And you can follow Gin, she's @GinStephens. I think that's all she wrote.

Gin Stephens: Yep, that's all.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. Anything from you, Gin, before we go?

Gin Stephens: No. I think that's it.

Melanie Avalon: All right. I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right. Bye-bye.

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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! 

 

 

Oct 04

Episode 181: Continuous Glucose Monitors, Being Part of A Study, Tweaking Food Choices, Vitamin D, Obsessive Food Thoughts, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

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Welcome to Episode 181 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! Go To Butcherbox.com/IFPodcast And Get 2 Free Lobster Tails And 2 Free Filet Mignon In Your First Box!

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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.com! Go To Audible.com/IFPodcast Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For A 30 Day Free Trial, Including A Free Audiobook!

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

SHOW NOTES

1:05 - BUTCHERBOX: Go To Butcherbox.com/IFPodcast And Get 2 Free Lobster Tails And 2 Free Filet Mignon In Your First Box!

3:20 - 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!

NAD+ Gold

13:55 - Listener Feedback: Bronwyn - Thank You!

Cate Shanahan, M.D.: PUFAs, Dietary Fat Problems, Hunger And Cravings, Fixing Fat Burn Potential, Cellular Emergencies, Snacking, Stubborn Fat, Fish Oil, And More!

29:20 - AUDIBLE: Go To Audible.com/IFPODCAST Or Text IFPODCAST To 500500 For A 30 Day Free Trial, Including A Free Audiobook! 

31:45 - Listener Feedback: Eric - ADF and Vitamin D

Thorne Research - Vitamin D/K2 Liquid - Dietary Supplement with Vitamins D3 and K2 to Support Healthy Bones and Muscles

D Minder Vitamin D App

40:00 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To Bioptimizers.com/IFPodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% Off Any Order!

42:45 - Listener Feedback: Mandy - Food Choices

Never Binge Again™: How Thousands of People Have Stopped Overeating and Binge Eating - and Stuck to the Diet of Their Choice! (By Reprogramming Themselves to Think Differently About Food.) (Glenn Livingston, PhD)

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 181 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

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And ButcherBox has an amazing offer just for our audience. For a limited time, new members can get two lobster tails and two filet mignons completely for free in their first box. Just go to butcherbox.com/ifpodcast. Again, that’s butcherbox.com/ifpodcast to get two free lobster tails and filet mignons in your first box. And by the way, definitely get on it now. They recently reopened up the waitlist, so you definitely want to take advantage of this offer, just in case they go back to a waitlist again.

And one more announcement before we jump back in, are you fasting clean inside and out? Okay, here's the thing. You might be fasting clean, drinking water, drinking your black coffee, but did you know you might still be putting compounds directly into your body, which are messing with your hormones and making you less likely to burn fat. The average man uses around six skincare products per day, the average female uses around 12. And conventional skincare and makeup in the US is full of things called endocrine disruptors. These are compounds which mess with our hormones. And these include obesogens which can actually make our body store fat. It's honestly shocking. Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for their toxic nature, including carcinogens as well, and the US has banned less than 10. Thankfully, there's an easy solution.

There's a company called Beautycounter and they were founded on a mission to create safe skincare that protects and nourishes your skin and is free of endocrine disruptors. Gin and I adore them. They are game changers. They have skincare lines to meet all of your different needs. They've got amazing shampoo and conditioner, sunscreen, an overnight peel, vitamin C serums. and so much more. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order. If you'd like to learn more about Beautycounter and get free discounts and special things from me, definitely get on my Clean Beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. Lastly, if you'd like to take a quiz to find your perfect products, I created those at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz.

All right. Now enjoy the show.

Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 181 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. I am just immersed in all sorts of amazing data and learning about myself.

Melanie Avalon: Would you like to elaborate?

Gin Stephens: I would. Melanie knows, because she knows what I'm doing. But for readers of Fast. Feast. Repeat., and even readers of Feast Without Fear, I've been talking about personalized nutrition ever since I first saw that famous TED Talk that I talked about, with Dr. Eran Segal. I saw it first in 2017 and it literally changed my life, to understand that we all have personalized responses to foods. Some of it's based on our genetic background, but a lot of it is our gut microbiome, and really just our hormonal health in general.

In Fast. Feast. Repeat., I talked about the work that Tim Spector is doing. He's my favorite gut microbiome researcher from the UK. And he had a study called the PREDICT Study, and then the PREDICT 2 Study, which some of my friends did a year ago. And I am now participating in the third round of this, PREDICT 3. It's with an app called Zoe, and he's one of the collaborators with it. But as part of the study, for the past seven days, I've been wearing a continuous blood glucose monitor that they sent me, and I have to send it back which is so sad because, man, is it eye-opening to see how my body responds to different foods, with my blood glucose so I can see what it's doing all during the day, all during the night, how it goes up, how it goes down, how it responds to foods. I'm so happy to report that, I'm not surprised, the foods that I thought that worked well for me, guess what?

Melanie Avalon: They work well?

Gin Stephens: They do.

Melanie Avalon: So, are you eating some of their stuff and your stuff?

Gin Stephens: Well, I had to do that for two days. There were two days where I had to start the day eating these muffins that they sent me. Oh, my Lord. Okay, yuck. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: For listeners, we wanted to record the podcast earlier, but Gin was like, “I can't record a podcast after eating the muffin.”

Gin Stephens: I was right. I was predicting that. It was before I had even eaten the muffins, but I had a feeling because I had to eat them in the morning because, see, you couldn't have anything before the muffins except water. I'd wake up in the morning and drink black coffee. So, I had to eat the muffins and then wait four hours and then eat the-- they were actually different muffins and then wait two hours and then I could have real food. The first day of that, I opened at 8:00 AM, and I never eat at 8:00 AM, even on vacation. If I'm going to have breakfast, we usually end up doing more of a brunch. So, I can't think of the last time I've had food at 8:00 AM. But I had to eat, I think, it was three muffins that had been frozen and then I microwaved them. And the first round of muffins, I think they're testing fat clearance, like how quickly your body clears out fat after you eat a high-fat meal. These were high-fat muffins. They are high fat because you could tell by reading the ingredients list. You would not have probably eaten these muffins.

Melanie Avalon: I was going to say, “This is not a Melanie study.”

Gin Stephens: No, you probably wouldn't have eaten the muffins, but the first ingredient was like safflower oil or something.

Melanie Avalon: Oh gosh!

Gin Stephens: I know. I know. I know. But I ate the muffins and then I was so crabby for those three hours because they weren't satisfying at all. If I could have put some butter on there or some strawberry jam, but no. They tasted like a mix between a cornbread muffin and pound cake, but with less flavor. So, then the second set of muffins, they were like gluten-free-ish, I don't know, low-fat muffins. But my blood glucose responded great to both sets of muffins. I had to do this blood test, where I had to squeeze out all this blood onto this card and send it off to be-- Anyway, they're going to test the, I think, my fat clearance because you had to do it a certain number of hours after that and it gives you a lot of information. Oh, I also had to send in a poop sample.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's right up my alley.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, so that was interesting. It was a little more hardcore than the one I did for the American Gut Project. I won't go into details, but it was interesting, let's just say. And then I took them all to the post office and mail them in. That was also fun. This guy behind me is like, “What's on your arm?” It was my continuous blood glucose monitor. And I thought that was a very bold question to ask a stranger at the post office, but I explained it. But I should have said, “This is poop in this box,” but I didn't. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: Is putting it on hard?

Gin Stephens: It was actually so very easy. I was scared, but I did it. You stick it to the back of your arm and this little thing, and you just go click and then it just pops in. It was easier than the fingerstick.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, I have two brands of CGM I'm vetting right now, and I haven't done either one yet.

Gin Stephens: Well, this information is just so important, I think, because it showed me-- like I had one meal that I've eaten so far that did not work very well for me. It was the only one and it was a flatbread topped with a lemon ricotta, and then sauteed brussels sprouts, and then like Parmesan cheese and then hot honey. That one shot my blood glucose up higher than anything has so far, probably the honey. But when I've eaten potatoes, when I've eaten rice, even toast with egg on top, I have a very slow, steady rise and then a slow steady back down. Yeah, I think that flatbread didn't have a lot of fat with it. I mean it had some fat, but I probably normally have more fat with my carbs. So, it just kind of spiked me right up.

Melanie Avalon: Fascinating.

Gin Stephens: So fascinating. But, yeah, I feel like this is what's so sad to me. These monitors are by prescription only, and the only way to get a prescription from your doctor for most people for insurance to pay for it, it's for you to already be really sick. But for somebody who's healthy, this can help you know what is leading you to a healthier profile for yourself. So, it seems to me like they would want to put these in the hands of people who are healthy as a preventative measure. I guess that's not the place we are right now yet. But I think this is one of the most exciting preventative tools ever, understanding how your body responds to things.

For example, one day, I had my normal snack and then I had some coconut water. My blood glucose went up pretty high after the coconut water based on what I had prior to that. Whereas another day when I had a snack, waited a couple hours, then had the coconut water, I had a very mild increase.

Melanie Avalon: Well, you know the problem with using this as preventative?

Gin Stephens: Well, I don't know the problem of that. No, what is that?

Melanie Avalon: Because we would eradicate a lot of the need for the medical system if we switch to being preventative.

Gin Stephens: I don't think that they're all just back there with their nefarious plan to keep us hooked on the medical system. I don't know. I don't. I don't think they are. I think that they want to want us to be healthy. They want to help us. I mean, maybe big pharma, okay. But the doctors want us to be better. They want us to be healthy.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I meant more big pharma. Yeah, like implementation of policy into everything.

Gin Stephens: Well, okay, policy is a whole different ball of wax. But it's really sad that I'm going to have to send it back. It's not a toy. It's not a plaything. It's not, “Oh, this is fun.” It's like, wow, this is powerful data that is teaching me so many important things.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I love it. I'm excited to try mine. I was going to do it earlier, but then, as Gin knows, I got surgery, fixed my deviated septum to breathe better. Listeners, Gin was right.

Gin Stephens: Gin was right. Let's just say that, “Gin was right.”

Melanie Avalon: I was like, “I'll be fine.” And Gin was like, “It's going to be really awful.”

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: I was right.

Melanie Avalon: And it was really awful.

Gin Stephens: I knew it would be.

Melanie Avalon: It was so terrible. I basically just stayed on the couch and watched Disney movies, all of the live-action versions of all the Disney movies, like Aladdin and Mulan. Spoiler alert, the new live-action Mulan does not have singing.

Gin Stephens: Oh, that's interesting.

Melanie Avalon: It's very upsetting.

Gin Stephens: I would probably like it better.

Melanie Avalon: Probably, you would.

Gin Stephens: That sounds cool. I'm going to watch it.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, it was really, really tragic. But, no, I would go to get the mail and I was done for the day. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. Any anything like that.

Melanie Avalon: I just felt like I was dying. I had to reevaluate. I was like, “Okay, what tools do I have to support my health, getting back on recovering," because I can't do my sauna, can't do exercise. I think that's the worst, is knowing you can't lift heavy things. That's what I thrive on, is lifting, and I can't get my heart rate up. So, I couldn't do my cold showers, can't do my sauna, couldn't breathe, so can't do my breathing. I was like, “I have nothing.” It stopped taking NMN and NR, the precursors to NAD. I started taking that again because we talked about Elysium, I think,before on the show.

Gin Stephens: Right.

Melanie Avalon: Okay, it could have been a coincidence. But when I started taking that I started feeling a lot better.

Gin Stephens: Well, that's good.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know if it just happened to be a timeline, coincidence that that's how it lined up. I'm taking it for life, not stopping this time. For listeners. I'll put links to all of that in the show notes. But that's that.

Gin Stephens: Well, I'm glad that you're on the mend. So, you're feeling like yourself again?

Melanie Avalon: Getting there. Excited to breathe because breathing is everything.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it is. I had my adenoids taken out in, gosh, 1991. I was 21, I guess, when I had the surgery done, and I remember it being terrible.

Melanie Avalon: Because that's on your nose too? Was that on your nose?

Gin Stephens: It's between your nose and your tonsils.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, okay. I was just doing a lot of contemplations about anesthesia. It's so weird.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I hate anesthesia. Hate it.

Melanie Avalon: And then, I started having memories that I'm not sure if they're real memories. I thought I blacked out. Or I thought stopped remembering things at a certain point. But then, I started remembering things from the OR room before the surgery that I hadn't remembered for, and I was like, “Wait, so if I think about this enough, I like remember everything.”

Gin Stephens: Oh, I don't want to. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: It's very, very scary. In any case.

Gin Stephens: Well, hooray for breathing. That's good.

Melanie Avalon: I know. Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yes, let's get started.

Melanie Avalon: All right, so to start things off, we have a follow-up email from Bronwyn who wrote into the show before. And the subject is “Thank You.” And Bronwyn says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie, thank you so much for answering my question in Episode 174. Every time I listen and hear you say hello to me, Gin. I grin from ear to ear and say hello, back out loud.”

Gin Stephens: Hello.

Melanie Avalon: “I'm glad you both like my name. It's Scottish.” She says her mother spent two years in the UK in the late 60s before she got married. She says, “I loved your air conditioner thermostat analogy, Gin.” And for listeners, that was I think about--

Gin Stephens: Her weight setpoint.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, right.

Gin Stephens: It was about how your body tries to keep you at a certain weight setpoint. That's what I think.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. So, she says, “However, I already know my air conditioner/body is broken and I need to find the answer to healing before it can adjust to match the thermostat. What I really wanted to know is the mechanism of how it manages to not lose weight. Melanie, you covered it. And I guess for me, the likely answer is I'm making glucose from protein after I run out of fuel from each previous meal.” Just really quickly to that, I'm not necessarily saying that, I guess, I don't know. I don't know if like the reason you're losing weight is because you're making glucose from protein. But basically, what we talked about is, you can be fasted or seemingly you think you'd be burning fat but actually the liver is upregulating gluconeogenesis and producing blood sugar from protein. A lot of things can go on in your body.

She says, “Thank you so much for taking so much time to discuss the possible ways forward. It took a weight off me that you thought more or longer fasting was not the answer. I don't enjoy ADF at the moment. May interest you, Melanie, to know that I came to IF from seven years of a diet called Trim Healthy Mama.” Have you heard of that, Gin?

Gin Stephens: I have heard of it just because I've been in these groups for so many years. But here's what's so cool. I didn't have to do that one because I was already doing intermittent fasting when it got really popular. So, if it had come out earlier, I'm sure I would have done it.

Melanie Avalon: Probably would have done it.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, but because it came out-- I'd never heard of it until after I did intermittent fasting, so I never had to try it.

Melanie Avalon: It's nice. Although the concept she talks about is something I personally apply because she says, “Which is based on separating fuels, fat, and carbs into different meals. I listened several times to your interview with Cyrus and Robby, and it's so very interesting. I recognize that the ideal would be to pick a fuel and stick with it. I have not eaten PUFAs since I started it.”

Gin Stephens: Can I hop in? Oh, go ahead. I just wanted to say, I think this is where it's so important to know your body. I haven't tested a meal that's completely carbs with no fat yet because even the one yesterday that cause my blood glucose to go up so much higher, had less fat, but it still had some fat. But I do plan to try a meal that's it's even more carbs than that just to see what that does too. But for me, when I have-- the meals that I've been testing that I've done so well with have plenty of carbs and plenty of fat. So, I think for me having the fat and carbs together, I've always said that that works really well for me, but it's showing up also in the way my blood glucose is responding.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think it's definitely really individual. Gin, you just have epic, epic metabolism, blood sugar control processing of fuels.

Gin Stephens: If I went in there right now after we finished recording, I have these pretzels with, I don't know, this cinnamon, sugar, yogurt coating on there that someone sent me. If I went in and just ate those on an empty stomach, I'm pretty sure that's mostly carbs. It's very sugary. I'm pretty sure my blood glucose would spike up really fast and crash back down. I'm probably not going to do that, but I don't like the way it feels. But I just naturally gravitate towards-- I wouldn't go and just eat a bunch of crackers by themselves. I would put cheese with them because I know that I feel better when I do that. I don't feel well if I just had a cookie, for example. I just know that the fat really helps my body process the carbs. People know. If you know that when you eat something you feel terrible after you eat it, there's something going on in your body that is telling you that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. 100%.

Gin Stephens: Anyway, I just had to pop that in there. You were going to say something about that too?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, we're all individual. For me, I really benefit from separating the fats versus the carbs. And I'm just going to say she said she hasn't eaten PUFAs, which are polyunsaturated fats since she started it. I interviewed Cate Shanahan, Gin. She wrote Deep Nutrition, which was a book that both Gin and I read and really, really appreciated. But she wrote a new book called Fatburn Fix that I talked about, I think, at length on the show, but it's really all about polyunsaturated fats. So, I think when this comes out, that episode might be out. So, I will put a link to it in the show notes. But she was really great.

Her focus in college was fatty acid metabolism. I was like, “Oh my goodness. That's what I'm obsessed with.” So, yep. Anyways, back to Bronwyn. She says, “After a lifetime of dieting, I'm not sure whether I'm ready to go back to that. Gin, thank you for the freedom of IF. But Melanie, I recognize that you're the type of person who enjoys control over what you eat. And that's great.”

Gin Stephens: I have to log everything that I'm eating in the Zoe app for this study, and it is making me die, like having to lock it. And then, I put some Triscuits on my plate, and I was going to eat them and I was like, “I have to count them,” and then it was like there were nine and then I had to put it the serving size but the box the serving size was six and so I had to put in either one serving or two, and I couldn't-- So I was like, I just ate three more. But I was like, “This is crazy.” I hate, hate, hate to log. Even though I'm eating what I want, having to write it down is just making me get crazy. Anyway, but it's data, I'm learning.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I want to address that because I don't like logging or all of that. My aspect of control-- because I found that interesting that she said that because I do wonder how I come across, so hearing that is interesting. I just like having control over my particular-- I think I'm just more selective in what I eat because of how my body--

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I was going to use the word choosy. Choosy with ingredients. You would not have eaten those muffins. You would have been like, “I'm sorry, I can't participate in this study.” Where I like ate them and was crabby about it all day but did it.

Melanie Avalon: That was one thing I loved. I did interview Wim Hof as well. And he has a whole thing about control, and he's talking about how, at least when it comes to our mind, having control over our mind is actually the ultimate freedom because when you control your mind, that is freedom. And I thought that was a nice paradigm shift. Back to our email.

She says, “At the same time that episode aired, I also got the results of blood tests with the doctor I finally found who do proper thyroid testing. My thyroid function is healthy. Go figure.” But she said it did show that she was low on progesterone, she started taking that. She's planning on giving herself a month or so on progesterone before making any changes. But after that, she says, “If I am still stalled, I would like to try to concentrate more on separating fuels for a while. As I said, I simply can't face picking one and sticking with it forever. But, Melanie, a brief question for you. Would it be enough to separate them by full days, i.e., one day fat-based, the next carb based or do I have to man up and pick one to stick with until I get to the goal or break the stall, but not forever.”

The concept of not combining fuels because of having efficient metabolism of that meal because what we're referring to is basically there's something called the Randle cycle, which is carbs and fat, and they compete-- basically, if you have both at the same time, it's not super-efficient, especially for people who struggle to have metabolic flexibility and handle different types of macronutrients. And then, there's also the potential issues of carbs and fat competing or messing up insulin receptors. I'm just hypothesizing or theorizing, but I think as long as the last meal has cleared, like Gin was talking about that meal with a muffin, or that muffin, maybe potentially be testing how long it takes like fat clearance from the blood, I think that would probably be an indicator of how long in between you need to go. I think probably switching back and forth between days is totally fine. It's more-- and some people do this but if this is really what you're trying to look at, and you want to switch between like low-carb, high-fat and high-fat, low-carb, I would separate them by days. I wouldn't do the morning one and then the evening another. I would probably separate by days.

She wants to know like, “Should you go longer until she breaks the plateau?” Honestly, you just have to try different things. So, maybe you could try a week where you do switch back and forth on different days or maybe you feel intuitive about it like, “Oh, today I feel like I want it to be a high-carb, low-fat day compared to a low-carb, high-fat day." Did I say that right? You guys know what I'm saying. Or you could try sticking one out. It's really going to have just be self-experimentation.

Last thing she says is, “Something interesting happened since her previous email, I had thousands of dollars' worth of horse gear stolen from my tack shed and it was very stressful. I immediately went from ADF to barely managing 16:8. I've gradually worked back to 20:4 now, but I was 16:8 or 17:7 for a few weeks. And I was sure that I would gain weight, but I only gained up to the top of the 3-kilogram range that I've been in since December. Then, I dropped back to the middle of that range where I'm sitting now. So, my statement that I gained without ADF appears to be wrong, or maybe some healing has happened.” And then, she says, “Thanks, again, for your comprehensive answer to my question.”

Yeah. So, two little things we could talk about in there, is when people have stressful events, and then feeling the need to lengthen their eating window. Nothing wrong with that. Do you thoughts about that?

Gin Stephens: It's true, we do hear that. Right now, a lot of the group members who live in the western United States are having a very stressful time with the fires and having to evacuate. And so, we've had a number of posts of people who are just overwhelmed from the stress of it. And some of them are like, “I've leaned into my fasting practice, and that has helped me deal with the stress.” Whereas some others are saying, “I've had to just relax my fasting time because that's helping me.” Neither is wrong. It's all about just what your body and how you can deal with that, that stress of the moment.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, 100%. I think a lot of people probably experience that as well, where the more you've been doing intermittent fasting, you may find that when it changes or you lengthen the window, and then you come back to it, the more you've work the muscle, it can be easier to jump back in and see results potentially faster.

Gin Stephens: Your body doesn't have to start from day one all over again. Maybe if you stopped for years, but not if it's just a matter of days, weeks, even months.

Melanie Avalon: One thing I think we talked about with Dr. Cate on that episode was she was talking about fasting because we've talked so much about how the body can hormonally adapt, and it can do all at once to shut down fat burning, or try to maintain a certain body weight. But fasting is the one approach where, even if it does try to make counter-regulatory mechanisms to stop weight loss, it's like the one thing where it really does force your body to tap into things. As long as I feel like eating throughout the day, your body can just wait for the next thing.

Gin Stephens: That's true. Slow it down a little. That's how I felt that day that I was eating those muffins. I felt like somebody who was on a typical calorie-controlled, low-calorie day where you have your little crazy low-calorie breakfast, and then you have to wait and eat your crazy low-calorie lunch muffins, oh, my Lord, I was like, “I'm really hungry.” Thanks to intermittent fasting, there's never a time where I'm starving and not allowed to eat, ever, ever. I just go through the fast every day. If I felt super starving on one day, I would just go ahead and eat, but I don't. But if I did, I would, but I couldn't. It was so crazy. It really hearkened back to those diet days where I was following a rule. And I could not eat because I was following the directions of the study.

Melanie Avalon: That sounds really miserable.

Gin Stephens: It was eye opening. I followed my husband around and talked to him a lot that day. I think he ran out the door back to work. But I was like, “I'm so hangry. This is just like being on a diet.” It reminds me but it helped me remember, thank goodness, I never have to be hungry and not eat again, unless I do another study or something. But it's the freedom of that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it's amazing.

Gin Stephens: The day that I ate the most was the day I was the hungriest all day long. So, think about that people

Melanie Avalon: I know. That’s the way it is. Yeah.

Gin Stephens: All right. Well, great to hear from you Bronwyn. I'm glad you're tweaking and figuring things out. And sorry about that horrible theft of the horse gear.

Melanie Avalon: I know, that's really terrible, speaking from experience when getting things stolen. Really, really terrible.

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And now back to the show.

This one is from Eric and the subject is “ADF and Vitamin D.” Eric says, “I have seen evidence that suggests vitamin D is critical in the fight against COVID-19. With vitamin D being fat soluble, it is recommended to be taken with meals. I am doing ADF and would like to know what is the best way to supplement vitamin D on my down day. I am currently taking vitamin D with breakfast and dinner on my up days, but don't know if this is the best way. What would you recommend? Thanks for all you do. IF is changing my life. Love you, ladies. Thanks, Eric.”

Melanie Avalon: All right, Eric. So, thanks for your questions. Yes, the vitamin D connection, especially to COVID susceptibility and just our immune system is huge, like huge. Having vitamin D levels up seems to be so important, and one of the sad or unfortunate things is that with the quarantine situation, a lot of us are staying even more indoors and getting less outside sun exposure as well. So, vitamin D supplementation could definitely help. It is fat soluble. I take a brand by Thorne, I think it's an MCT oil carrier. So, I would recommend to having it with your breakfast and dinner on your up days. And I would recommend still taking it on your down days, that small amount, I don't see a problem with, breaking fast or whatever. You also definitely want to take the D3 form, which is in the Thorne version that I use. So, I'll put a link to that. Gin, do you have thoughts?

Gin Stephens: I just read that yesterday. Tim Spector that I was talking about earlier doing the gut work, the PREDICT studies. He has a new book, Spoon-Fed is the name of his new book, and I read his other book, The Diet Myth years ago. Oh my gosh, funny story, Melanie, by the way, he and I must have read the exact same studies because-- and thank goodness, my book came out first because his calories chapter in Spoon-Fed was like the same exact examples I gave. He talked about the nuts. He talked about the meat. He talked about the cheese sandwich. He didn't go into as much detail about the cheese sandwich as I did. But he talked about the NOVA food classification scale. It was fabulous. But his book came out in August. So, there's no way I could have copied him. I was like, “This looks like I plagiarized him,” but I did not. If you're reading the same studies, I guess it would get you the same information.

Anyway, he has a chapter on supplements and he's a doctor in addition to being a researcher, and he has a great chapter on supplements in that book. And he said he used to always recommend that people take vitamin D supplements as a physician, but now, after everything he's researched, he believes the best way to get it is just get out in the sun, and I know that some parts of the year, you can't. He lives in the UK, so he just gets 15 minutes of sun on his skin and gets his vitamin D like that. So, anyway, I just read that yesterday, which is why I'm popping that in there. Just something to consider instead of taking it as a supplement-- I'm not going to tell you not to take it as a supplement, but maybe on your down day, just go outside.

Melanie Avalon: There's also an app when I had Robb Wolf on that he's obsessed with, and it's called dminder, I think. I’ll put a link to it. But apparently, so you put in your skin type and your location.

Gin Stephens: And where you live. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And it tells you exactly when to go outside for how long to get the optimal amount of vitamin D absorption.

Gin Stephens: Okay, that I could live with. That is a fabulous-- Okay, I got to find that out, dminder.

Melanie Avalon: dminder. So, we'll put a link in the show notes.

Gin Stephens: I just thought it was interesting to see Tim Spector’s analysis because he said that the more he's learned about supplements, the fewer supplements he would ever take or recommend.

Melanie Avalon: That's the way I feel, honestly. I've done a lot of research on vitamin D supplementation, and it's complicated because it's hard to know. A lot of the studies find that people supplementing have potentially worse outcomes, but I think it's because the people supplementing, they were low, they're not the robust people with the high vitamin D to start with. So, it's really complicated. It's hard to know what is the causative factor there.

Gin Stephens: What did he say? Let me see if I can say what the way he said it. “The disease causes the deficiency, rather than the deficiency causing the disease.” I think that was something he said like that.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, I'm thinking about this a lot. I love that.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. So, but then you measure it and you're like, “Oh, look, you're deficient. And you have this disease, the deficiency caused the disease,” when really the disease caused the deficiency.

Melanie Avalon: It's really interesting. I'm prepping right now for, I think it's the Caltons, they wrote Rebuild Your Bones. And their theory is that pretty much all disease is from micronutrient deficiency. It's just funny because they have the exact opposite theory. So, they would say that it's backwards. They would say-- may probably do say almost that exact sentence that the deficiency causes the disease, not the disease caused the deficiency-- Oh.

Gin Stephens: I know. And look, all these people are respected in their field, respected researchers. And he talks a lot in Spoon-Fed about the problem with studies and misinterpreting studies and how short they are and how little we really know. I think that's just important. And that's what he does. He's a researcher, so finding good studies and really making something that will apply.

Melanie Avalon: I don't know, after hearing some stories about studies, I'm just-- it's hard to know, it's hard to know.

Gin Stephens: It really is, it really is. And just one thing that I love from him so much is the whole-- we're all different. That is just so key. And the more people that can start to understand this, the better. There is no one best way to eat. And the science is showing that over and over and over and more and more, that you have to take things with a grain of salt, in even studies.

Melanie Avalon: Where did that phrase come from? Every time I hear that, I wonder where that came from.

Gin Stephens: I don't know, maybe like the ancient Romans or something? Because they used salt for currency. I don't know I just made that up. Maybe someone will write in and tell us.

Melanie Avalon: Or maybe it's because salt makes things more palatable.

Gin Stephens: Oh, maybe, it does make food delicious.

Melanie Avalon: Who knows?

Gin Stephens: That's probably it.

[laughter]

Gin Stephens: You're probably right. All right. Well, Eric, I don't know if we helped you or not, but I'm going to get that dminder. That's a great idea.

Melanie Avalon: Definitely.

Gin Stephens: Because I really would rather get it from the sun, just from what I've read.

Melanie Avalon: I would too. I was going to even say I should probably be controversial and say--

Gin Stephens: Tanning bed.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I knew you were going to say that. [laughs] I was waiting for it.

Melanie Avalon: I know. I'm just going to say it. I do think getting a membership at a tanning place-- And I'm being very specific with this doing just the UVB beds, which are going to be the cheaper beds anyway, and literally going in for, I'm saying like a minute.

Gin Stephens: Your goal is not to be tanned. Your goal is to get the rays, the UVB.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because I really think vitamin D is huge.

Gin Stephens: Now, when we talked about this early on, maybe in 2017 and you said that, we got some pretty irate emails from people that were upset, but I guess our listeners now know that if you are suggesting something, you have researched it fully and are not worried about the dangers.

Melanie Avalon: Definitely, whenever you do a tanning bed, of course, there is the concern or the risk of skin cancer but I think in the grand scheme of things, in the overall picture, especially during the winter months when we're not getting sun exposure outside, weighing the cost-benefit for a lot of people, I think it's probably more beneficial to do very low-dose UVB bed, only going for like a minute, doing that. I don't know how often, but I found it was cheaper-- because some of the places have unlimited monthly, but I found was actually cheaper at least where I went, which I think was Palm Beach Tan, you could buy like credits, so like packages, and that was what turned out to be cheapest.

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And now back to the show.

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

Gin Stephens: Yes, let's go on to the next one.

Melanie Avalon: All right. So, the next question comes from Mandy. The subject is "Food Choices." And Mandy says, “I love your show, and I find it so helpful. I can't stop listening. And I just learned something new and intriguing each time I listen. So, thank you both for all the time and research you do in helping all of us who are on this journey to a better healthier me.” She says, “I've been IFing since January 1st, 2020.” Just thinking about January 1st, 2020, who knew that 2020 was going to be what it is.

Gin Stephens: Nobody.

Melanie Avalon: I know. She says, “I have no doubt this is the health plan, I won't say diet, that I feel is the way of life for me and what I know will be best for me long term. I started out doing 16:8 and eventually to 18:6. For about a two-week period, I was doing 20:4 and I did one 24-hour fast. I had a couple setbacks around Easter and again after my husband and I returned from vacation in July. So now, I typically do 18 to 19 hours fasting with a five- to seven-hour eating window. I do 16:8 on the weekends. I have not lost much weight in nine months. I'm fluctuating between five pounds. I admit, I haven't been doing pictures routinely or measuring but when I did last, I had lost inches. I lose the five pounds and then I gain it back usually because of a date night splurge with my husband each week."

She says, “My question is this. I feel like I'm obsessing about what to eat all the time. I'm constantly thinking about what should I open my window with? What should I make for dinner? I would love to open my window with the same type of thing daily to keep it simple for me when I am at work. I'm a nurse practitioner and I don't really have time to think about food when I'm at work, but I find myself doing it anyway. I also work all kinds of shifts, which makes it a little difficult to be consistent. When it's time to open my window, I'm ready to eat anything and everything. I also have the influences of people wanting to eat out when I am at work. Then when I need to eat dinner with my family, it's like I'm too full to eat the big meal we desire during this time, resulting in most likely me overeating in my window. I would love to eat cleaner. So, I am trying to do that. I also recently submitted a food sensitivity test and I'm waiting for results on that which I know will help determine what causes me inflammation.

How do I stop obsessing about what I should be eating each day? What are the best things to open my window with, so I feel satisfied but I'm not ruining my meal later? Examples of what I've been doing in the past, avocado toast on a low-carb tortilla with bagel seasoning and cheese, and Diet Energy V8, which has 2 grams of carbs, spicy bean, veggie burger and butternut squash spirals or rice cauliflower, crackers/cheese and veggies. I snack on nuts, cheese, or have an apple, but often cave to the junk snacks everywhere in my office that is not supplied by me, which are constantly in my face. Can you give any advice as to where to start? I know everyone is different and you can't tell what my body wants.”

We just talked about that. She says, “But I just want to stop thinking about foods so much and stressing about what to eat. Thanks in advance. And sorry for the long email question.” I love this question. So, Gin, what are your thoughts?

Gin Stephens: Well, it sounds like to me that the approach that you're doing right now is a great maintenance protocol for your body because that's what's happening. You're not losing weight, you're fluctuating between those five pounds up and down, and you're having pretty flexible weekends with 16:8. I can tell you that if I did 16:8 every weekend when I was trying to lose weight, I would not have lost weight because I needed shorter eating windows. And I know the not-fun part is that when your goal is weight loss, you do need to be more mindful even on the weekends. I talked about that in Delay, Don't Deny, Saturday is not a special occasion because it happens every week because that was always my biggest stumbling block until I finally was like, “Okay, I've got to crack down on this to lose the weight.” So, I needed a tighter window to lose weight. And it sounds like to me, Mandy, that might be true for you as well.

You mention that your shifts are different all the time and that your struggle seems to be at work. So, I don't really know if this is feasible or not, because I don't know how long your work shifts are. But when I was a teacher, I was at school for eight hours, most days eight hours, some days longer. If we had a faculty meeting, I could be there for 10 hours, or if we had a special event after school. I did not eat until I got home from work. I just didn't because you're exactly right, Mandy. I am pretty sure probably the food that you have around you is the same kind of food that I had around me as a teacher in the teachers’ workroom, not good stuff, just junk food all around. People would bring in treats, we would have sweet treat day, where people would bring in doughnuts. It was just all over the place. And it was also very unusual for us to get to go out to lunch, that was only on like a teacher workday. So that was not really something I had as a challenge. But it was so much easier. I didn't take food with me, I didn't eat what was there unless it was a very special occasion and the food had to be worth it. But I just didn't eat at work.

And I would go to work, I worked my eight hours, my 10 hours if it was a faculty meeting day, and then I came home and then I opened my window and I ate. And it was just so easy. Then on the weekend, I would probably have a five-hour window or so, open in the earlier afternoon, and then have a good dinner later. If I were trying to lose weight, two full meals on a Saturday and the Sunday would not have done it for me. I would have been weight stable doing that. When you get to maintenance, you can be more flexible, but you've got to tap into those fat stores and have some reason to burn them.

So, if you haven't read Fast. Feast. Repeat., I would read that. And I would focus on the Feast section. Also, there's an Intermittent Fasting Toolbox chapter that could really help you and then Tweak It Till It's Easy. And you just really want to find what you need to do to get that weight to start coming off. And so, what you're doing now isn't really it. I think that would be where I would start. You're very focused on what to eat, what to eat, what to eat. I used to be like that to thinking that if I could just find the magical foods that would be the key. And I've realized, “Yes, food is important,” but I never lost weight on the magical foods. It was always on more of the when. Real food, yes.

Now, I will say choosing real food over the junky food, that's huge. But overstressing on whether it's rice cauliflower or nuts, I would do less stressing about that. Eliminating the junk snacks, yes, eating real food, real food that is delicious.

Melanie Avalon: I don't even know how much she stressed about trying to lose weight as much as her just obsession about thinking about food all the time and what to eat.

Gin Stephens: Well she did say she hasn't lost much weight in nine months and she's fluctuating between five pounds and I think that is part of her struggle.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, well she said she lost inches but that she gains back and forth this five pounds because of date nights. She feels like she's obsessing about what to eat all the time and it's like, “What should I open my window with? What should they make for dinner?” So, I'm glad you said that, Gin, about how when you were a teacher, you just didn't eat, while you were working. Because that's what I was going to suggest, Mandy, is it actually feels to me like-- this kind of goes back to what Bronwyn was saying about the control aspects. But often when we're in a nebulous gray zone, and it depends on your personality type. But for a lot of people, if they are in a nebulous gray zone about what they are or aren't eating, it just leads to a lot of stressing about what to eat, like decision fatigue, because you don't have like a clear boundary about anything that you can just stick to.

So, I would suggest trying to actually come up with some more rules that you can stick to surrounding everything and know that you can change the rules. So, you can try different things, but maybe coming up with more black and white rules about everything, and then not breaking them. I'm not saying you're bingeing, and I wish this book wasn't called this, but in the book Never Binge Again, by Glenn Livingston, he talks a lot about this, and about the importance of just coming up with like a plan and sticking to it, and then not listening to that voice in the head that's trying to do different things or convince you to-- she talks about caving to junk snacks in the office everywhere. For that, you just make a rule that you're not going to eat the junk snacks. So, it's not like-- and I know that sounds like really simple, but if you want to really try to make this work and not have this issue of feeling like you are constantly being controlled by these questions of what to eat, and should I eat this, or should I not eat this? So, coming up with some rules like you're not getting snacks at work, you're just not, you're not, it's not an option.

And then, I do like the idea of tightening up the window. So, you're talking about opening with these different snacks-- you're trying to find snacks you can open with, but then also still eat your hearty meal later. I will say for me, we're all different, and she even says we're all different, but eating things like nuts, or avocado or stuff like that, if I were to eat that as a snack, I would be way less hungry later. So, if you do want to still have some sort of snack, but still be hungry later, I would suggest thinking more about that. And maybe doing things like not cheese, not nuts, not stuff like that, doing more just maybe vegetables or fruits or something like that.

Gin Stephens: And can I pop in? Some people actually find that, to the point that you just made, they can't open with a snack and then have a meal later. They do better to just open with their meal. You open with a meal and then have a snack later. Even though you want to eat dinner with your family and you're too full to eat the big meal then, maybe consider the meal with your family as the snack time and that you're only going to just have a little bit-- you're still eating together, you're just having a smaller portion. Just because it's a big meal, you don't have to eat the big meal. You can have some of the big meal.

Melanie Avalon: So, if she does that, are you saying she still has another meal?

Gin Stephens: I'm saying, open with your meal. Open with a meal. Whatever time you open, instead of trying to open with a snack and then have a big meal later, open with a big meal and then have something more snack-ish later, but you can sit down with your family and whatever they're eating as that dinner can be your snack. Does that make sense? Let's say you've made, I don't know, chili. You're having chili and baked potatoes with the family. I just made that up. That doesn't sound like what she would eat but I would. Chili and backed potatoes, back in the day, when I was cooking for my family. Just have a little bit of potato and a small serving of chili because you've already eaten your large meal earlier. Some people need to open with their large meal and then have a snack later if they're still hungry. Does that make sense?

Melanie Avalon: It does. Alternatively, could she try to cut the snack and just make the meal with the family, the big meal?

Gin Stephens: Totally. She totally could. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: I was a little bit unclear about the avocado and all that stuff. But it sounds like she's talking about that being snacks and--

Gin Stephens: And like what she's taken to work. It sounds like she's taken that to work to have it at work. I don't know. It's hard to tell.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I think she's opening her window at work.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, she does say, “I snack on nuts, cheese, or have an apple, often cave to junk snacks.”

Gin Stephens: If I tried to have a little tiny snack at work, I would probably then be starving and caving and eating the junk snacks too. That's why it was so much easier just to not eat at work. Like with the muffins the other day. I had eaten those muffins and now I need to eat some food, but I couldn't. It's hard to stop with a little bit.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it really is. I know it sounds like really nebulous to stop obsessing, just making rules and stop obsessing, but it can be pretty freeing for a lot of people. And like I said, you can change it around. So, you can try and come up with like one plan you want to follow and then try it and then don't think about it, and just do the plan. And then, if it doesn't work, come up with a new plan.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, exactly. Tweak it till it's easy.

Melanie Avalon: And then when you find yourself thinking about it-- because the good thing about having the rules is, if your brain’s like, “Huh, should I do something else?” No, because you already made the plan and you're seeing if it works. So, then you learn to not engage with this constant back and forth in your head of what you should or should not be doing. You just do it, evaluate if it worked or didn't work, and then keep doing it or adjust the plan.

Gin Stephens: That's how my mind works completely. I guess we're all different with that. But the month that I had completely alcohol free recently, I didn't wrestle every night with “Should I have a glass of wine with dinner or not?” I was like, “Nope, I'm not having any wine.” It was super easy. I didn't have to think about it. Whereas in all the months of 2020, every night, I was like, “Should I have wine, or should I not have wine? I don't know. I want to drink less. Oh.” And it was always a struggle. But then once I flipped that switch, I'm not having wine, I'm not having alcohol, it was like, “Bloop, okay, easy decision made.” And I didn't even have to worry about it. Or think about it or want it, I wasn't craving it.

Melanie Avalon: It's so much easier. And I think people are hesitant to do it because it sounds like, “Oh, you're being controlling or not being intuitive.” But having that approach to life, it can be really freeing. And like I said, you can always change it, to clarify about that. You're not going to change it that day, because that would be going back to questioning it. It's like so you would make the plan and you stick to it for however long the days it is and then reevaluate. Melanie, on the other hand, is back to alcohol and loving it.

Gin Stephens: I did have alcohol last night because I wanted to test it with my blood glucose meter.

Melanie Avalon: How did it affect things?

Gin Stephens: It didn't seem to affect it a lot at the time but all morning today, I had higher blood glucose than I've been having. I had really high blood glucose in the fasted state versus I don't usually. And I also slept so terribly last night. I woke up at like 2:00 AM and I was awake all night after that because I was really doing some science, so I wanted to make sure I had enough. In the middle of the night, I was like, “Yeah, this is not working for me.”

Melanie Avalon: It's so funny because we're complete opposites. I really intuitively, when I'm drinking wine, I feel my blood sugar control, my glycemic control is so much better. So interesting.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it really is. And you're probably right.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. For me.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. For you. Yeah, exactly. But for me, no.

Melanie Avalon: Yep. All right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, a few things for listeners before we go. If you'd like to submit your own questions to the podcast, you can directly email questions@ifpodcast.com or you can go to ifpodcast.com and you can submit questions there. You can find all the stuff that we like at ifpodcast.com/stuffwelike. You can get the show notes for today's episode. Those are at ifpodcast.com/episode181. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. I'm @melanieavalon, Gin is @ginstephens. Speaking of Gin, I just realized on Facebook, I can be like doing my Instagram from Facebook. Did you know this? And it's so much easier than on Instagram.

Gin Stephens: What?

Melanie Avalon: Because you know how Facebook changed?

Gin Stephens: Like it just recently changed?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Everything's everywhere. I don't know where anything is. I'm so confused. I feel like I'm lost. I feel like I'm like a lost child in the mall. I'm like, “Wait.”

Gin Stephens: I rarely use Facebook on the desktop, unless something's broken on the phone. I'm usually on the phone. So, the only time I do it on the computer is if something's broken on the phone.

Melanie Avalon: Well, it's really confusing. I get so lost. I think I'm in one group and then--

Gin Stephens: That's what I'm hearing from people. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. I think I'm in my group and then I'm not, and then I think I'm somewhere else, and then I'm not. I'm like, “How do I get back to--?” And I feel like I'm missing things. It's just very confusing.

Gin Stephens: Yes, tools are missing. I'm in a power admin group that's by invitation only. You have to have a certain amount of engagement in your groups, whatever, if you're an admin, and everybody there is talking about it.

Melanie Avalon: It's very upsetting.

Gin Stephens: Help! Apparently, comments are just going wherever. Someone will make a comment, and it won't be at the end anymore. It pops in the middle. The sequence is all wrong. Also, somebody who's in one of my groups said she posted it in the group, and it went to her personal page instead. And then, I was like, “Well, maybe you did it by accident.” And then, she had a screen recording of her doing it and it was like actually--

Melanie Avalon: Happening.

Gin Stephens: Yes.

Melanie Avalon: And the other thing is, I feel before this, I was getting way more notifications about stuff and now I'm not. I know stuff is happening, but I'm clearly not hearing about it anymore.

Gin Stephens: Right.

Melanie Avalon: Or it'll be this person commented and then I go on, I'm like, “What?” I don't know, it's very strange. But in any case, right before this, I'm also randomly finding random things because I'm ending up in random parts of it, I don't understand. But there was this one thing and it was like Instagram and it was like, you have this many notifications. I was like, “Wait, what?” So, I clicked on it and then my Instagram pulled up as a feed, but in Facebook, and it showed me all of the things I've missed in Instagram for the past three years.

Gin Stephens: Oh, wow. Like messages?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, it literally went back-- and comments. I could answer though for my Instagram on Facebook and I was like, “What is happening?” So that's the one good thing they need to keep, and they need to pull it out and make it its own little button somewhere that because I have no idea I'm going to find it again. I have no idea how to get back to where.

Gin Stephens: You don't know where you were. You just stumbled across it.

Melanie Avalon: I really did.

Gin Stephens: Wandering in the wilderness. Oh, my God.

Melanie Avalon: I was in some message version of one of my things, because I think it was connected to one of my business pages. I've literally no idea where it is.

Gin Stephens: [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: If I find it again.

Gin Stephens: I did everything the opposite of the way you're supposed to. I don't have any business pages. I had two. I had one for Gin Stephens, author, and one for Delay, Don't Deny, the page, instead of the group. I just deleted them.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I don't use it.

Gin Stephens: You're supposed to. You're supposed to market through them and do all this. I'm like, “No.”

Melanie Avalon: I don't use it. But I get messages to it. That's how I ended up there by accident because I don't know how to find it, like normally the messages. But then randomly I'll get notifications. It's like, "You have messages.”

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that's why I stopped because I was getting some messages there. And also, that's where people would send me really mean messages.

Melanie Avalon: Oh.

Gin Stephens: I know, it's really sad. In Facebook groups, people send you mean messages. But now, I don't read messages from people I don't know. You know how in the Messenger app, it has an Other box, Message Requests. I don't read those for my own sanity. So, if you've tried to connect with me people, and you're sending me to my Facebook Messenger, I don't read them. Because it's always questions, and it'll start with a simple question like, “Can I have lemon?” And I answer to it. And then, a month later, it's like, “I've only lost one pound, what do I do now?” And then, a month later, it's like, “What should I eat?” And so then, it becomes it's just too much. Yeah. And so, I apologize, everybody, if you've ever tried to reach me with Messenger, I don't even look at that, because I don't have time. I would be doing that 27 hours a day if I did, because I don't have time to personally coach everybody through Messenger. And that's what the groups are for. If you have a question, ask it in the group.

Melanie Avalon: Same. I always redirect.

Gin Stephens: Don't ask me personally, come to the group. I wish there was-- I could do an autoreply. That would be the best. If I could send-- not on Messenger though, but on the pages you can. I actually finally set that up before I deleted it completely. But I wish in Messenger, you could have an autoreply for people, and you could set it to say what you want. And mine would say, “Thank you for reaching out. Unfortunately, due to the volume of messages that I get, I'm unable to see them or reply to them. Please ask your question in the group where we will all be glad to help you,” because I really want to help people, but I just can't do a one-on-one Messenger thing. And it's hard because I would love to do it, and I used to. I used to answer, I would go to that box, I would answer everybody, and it just got to be too much.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I have a preset answer that I copy and paste that redirects them to the group.

Gin Stephens: I don't even see them because they're in that hidden box. I don't even go there. The message requests, I don't look at them.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, Facebook,

Gin Stephens: I know.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Well, on that note, I will talk to you next week.

Gin Stephens: All right, I look forward to it.

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. Theme 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!

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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! 

 

 

Sep 27

Episode 180: Thermogenesis of Food, Weight Gain After Smoking Cessation, Nicotine, Increased Energy, Continuous Glucose Monitors, And More!

Intermittent Fasting

GET THE EPISODE ON ITUNES!

 Subscribe For Updates HERE!

Welcome to Episode 180 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:

 PREP DISH: Prep Dish is an awesome meal planning service which sends you weekly grocery and recipe lists, so you can do all your meal preparation at once, and be good to go for the week! It's perfect for the IF lifestyle! And better yet, the meals are all gluten free or Paleo, which is fantastic if you're already doing so, but also a wonderful way to "try out" gluten free or Paleo with delicious meals, and no feelings of restriction!! We can't recommend them enough!​ Get A Free 2 week trial At prepdish.com/ifpodcast!

BiOptimizers: A Company Whose Mission Is To Fix Your Digestion! Get Their Full Spectrum Magnesium Supplement To Fix Your Magnesium Status, Containing All 7 Versions Of Magnesium! Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10%

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

SHOW NOTES

1:10 - PREP DISH: Free Subscription! Get a free 2 week trial At Prepdish.com/ifpodcast! You'll get weekly gluten-free and Paleo grocery and recipe lists!!

2:40 - 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!

14:30 - Listener Q&A: Melanie - Body Needing IF?!

25:00 - BUTCHERBOX: Sign Up And Get Free Ground Beef For Life At ButcherBox.com/IFPODCAST

27:05 - Listener Q&A: Meghan - Smoking and Intermittent Fasting

33:50 - Listener Q&A: Kate - Increased Energy After Eating.

40:20 - BIOPTIMIZERS:  Go To bioptimizers.com/ifpodcast And Use The Coupon Code IFPODCAST10 To Save 10% 

Dr. Kirk Parsley: Sleep Hygiene, How To Fall Asleep, Melatonin, Insomnia, Optimal Sleep Time, Morning Vs. Night People, Light And Sleep, Caffeine And Alcohol, Sleep Drugs, CBD, And More!

Tara Youngblood: Body Temperature For Sleep, Morning Vs. Night People, The Dark Side Of Sleep Tracking, Circadian Rhythms, The Chilipad, And More!

42:50 - Listener Q&A: Shay - Fasting Question.

The Fatburn Fix: Boost Energy, End Hunger, and Lose Weight by Using Body Fat for Fuel (Cate Shanahan MD)

TRANSCRIPT

Melanie Avalon: Welcome to Episode 180 of The Intermittent Fasting Podcast. If you want to burn fat, gain energy, and enhance your health by changing when you eat, not what you eat with no calorie counting, then this show is for you.

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

Gin Stephens: Hi, everybody. I want to take a minute to tell you about one of our sponsors, Prep Dish. Prep Dish is changing the way thousands of families do mealtime. Here's how it works. Prep Dish thoughtfully crafts a week's worth of gluten-free and paleo meals that feature seasonal ingredients to make the most of your budget, save you time, and surprise your taste buds. You may be thinking, but we aren't gluten-free or paleo! Well, when I have used Prep Dish, my family didn't even notice that the meals were gluten-free because they are based on real food ingredients and the meals were delicious. There's also a keto plan if that's what you're looking for.

When you join Prep Dish, along with the weekly menu, you'll get a printable grocery list and instructions for prep day. Just two hours of preparation yields scrumptious, good-for-you dishes all week long. You shop once, prep once. When you join, not only do you have access to this week's menu, but you can choose from past week menus. The dilemma of what's for dinner is solved forever. Go to prepdish.com/ifpodcast for your free trial. Yep, it's totally free. And once you see how easy it makes your life, you won't know what you did without it. That's prepdish.com/ifpodcast.

Melanie Avalon: And one more announcement before we jump back in. Are you fasting clean inside and out? Okay, here’s the thing. You might be fasting clean, drinking water, drinking your black coffee, but did you know you might still be putting compounds directly into your body, which are messing with your hormones and making you less likely to burn fat? The average man uses around six skincare products per day. The average female uses around 12. And conventional skincare makeup in the US is full of things called endocrine disruptors. These are compounds which mess with our hormones, and these include obesogens, which can actually make our bodies store fat. It's honestly shocking.

Europe has banned thousands of these compounds for their toxic nature, including carcinogens as well and the US has banned less than 10. Thankfully, there's an easy solution. There's a company called Beautycounter and they were founded on a mission to create safe skincare that protects and nourishes your skin and is free of endocrine disruptors. Gin and I adore them. They are game-changers. They have skincare lines to meet all of your different needs. They've got amazing shampoo and conditioner, sunscreen, an overnight peel, vitamin C serums, and so much more. You can shop with us at melanieavalon.com/beautycounter. And if you use that link, something really special and magical might happen after you place your first order.

If you'd like to learn more about Beautycounter and get free discounts and special thanks from me, definitely get on my clean beauty email list. That's at melanieavalon.com/cleanbeauty. And lastly, if you'd like to take a quiz to find your perfect products, I created those at melanieavalon.com/beautycounterquiz.

All right, now enjoy the show.

Melanie Avalon: Hi everybody and welcome. This is episode number 180 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 so excited.

Melanie Avalon: Why? I actually don't know why. Wait, why? Normally, I feel like I know.

Gin Stephens: Well, it's going to be old news by the time this podcast episode comes out, but as of the date that we're recording it, tomorrow on supermarket checkout shelves everywhere, Woman's World magazine is hitting the stands and I've got my first glimpse at the finished article. Yesterday, they sent me a PDF of it and also the cover. Now, of course, you know one caveat they have to throw their crazy claims on there, which you know, I didn't say it, claims on the cover. Lose 19 pounds in 14 days. Now, would I ever say that in a million years?

Melanie Avalon: No.

Gin Stephens: And I did not say that. I told no one that nor would I ever but I guess make people pick up the magazine, but the article doesn't. I do not say that in the article, but the article is actually very well written, and I'm proud of it. It features Fast. Feast. Repeat. The cover photo is of one of my moderators, Paige Davidson, who lost 108 pounds at the age of 57. It's fabulous. It opens with a quote from Krista Varady and her latest research on time-restricted eating. It talks about Fast. Feast. Repeat. right after that. There's a great quote where they talk about me saying that a pound a week is a good goal. Not to expect a lot of quick weight loss. So, at least they have that in there. I'm really happy to see. They have a section from Jason Fung. They have a section from Dr. Mark Mattson from Johns Hopkins, he's the one who wrote the New England Journal of Medicine article that came out in December of 2019. And he actually says, time-restricted eating, quote from him, is one of the best things you can do for yourself, which is huge. And so, it ends with picture of the cover of Fast. Feast. Repeat., which is thrilling.

Melanie Avalon: That is really exciting.

Gin Stephens: It's really exciting.

Melanie Avalon: What's it called, again, the actual magazine?

Gin Stephens: Woman’s World. You see it at every supermarket checkout, it's right there. Always got some kind of crazy weight loss claim on the cover.

Melanie Avalon: And what was the claim, 19 pounds and how long?

Gin Stephens: 19 pounds in 14 days. I wish I could have convinced them to say you're going to lose weight really slowly, but it's okay. That's how I would have written it, but I don't know, maybe people would have been so shocked, by lose weight slowly and keep it off, they would have picked it up.

Melanie Avalon: I'm just curious because that's such a specific number. Where did they come up with that?

Gin Stephens: Well, Paige talked about how she lost a lot of weight right at first. And so, I think they got that from her story.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, did she lose 19 pounds in 14 days?

Gin Stephens: Well, she said they got that part actually a little wrong. It was something close to that, but not exactly. I'm looking over that part. I wish that they had said, “You're going to lose about a pound a week after the adjustment phase, and that's great: But that doesn't sound as exciting, I guess. But it's what I would have written.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, right, because in your book, the weight loss is after the 30 days, but they took out that context in the article.

Gin Stephens: Yeah. I mean, that's not in there at all the 28-Day FAST Start, they say several things from me. And the quotes are pretty solid. There's not one thing that I said that I read and go, “Ooh, that's not really what--” No, there's nothing like that. So, that's good. And the article, like I said, is very solid and the writer did an excellent job. Other than the spin on the cover, which was going to make people have unrealistic expectations, like all of those covers always do. I would like to have it not say that, but I'm focusing on the positives which is, I am quoted in an article with Varady, Fung, and Mattson, and Gin Stephens. Anyway, it is really exciting, and it features Fast. Feast. Repeat.

Melanie Avalon: I'm going to pick up a copy tomorrow.

Gin Stephens: Well, do. It's going to be on the stands September 3rd through 9th. September 14th is that's the date it says on the cover, but they come out before the date. By the time September 14th rolls around, it shouldn't be available anymore new, and it'll be out. But, anyway, hopefully, everyone got a chance to see it. I hope everyone knows, if you know me, anyone that knows me would know I would never say that you will lose 14 pounds in 19 days-- No, 19 pounds in 14 days. I definitely wouldn't say that. I wouldn't even say expect to lose 19 pounds in 19 weeks. You might not. If you have a ton of water weight, you’ve got some kind of issue with a massive amount of water retention. That's the only way. I mean no one on earth is losing 19 pounds of fat in 14 days. You're just not. I think it's probably impossible physically to do that.

Melanie Avalon: Now, I'm wanting to like run numbers in my head. But, yeah.

Gin Stephens: You would have to weigh a whole lot. But for it to be fat, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because just a pound of fat is how many calories?

Gin Stephens: 3500 is the standard number, although I've read an analysis that no one can justify where that number came from.

Melanie Avalon: Story of life.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's just common knowledge. But Zoe Harcombe, I think is the name of the person that wrote the analysis that I read years ago. Have you heard of her?

Melanie Avalon: No.

Gin Stephens: She's in the low carb community, I believe. It was years ago, I read her analysis. She's from the UK and she's maybe a dietitian, I can't remember, that's what I think. And it was an analysis of why do we think that it's 3500 calories per pound and she said she went everywhere trying to find the origin of that and couldn't figure out where that came from.

Melanie Avalon: That's really funny.

Gin Stephens: Maybe, there is a fabulous origin, but she just wasn't able to find it. That's possible. Anyway, no, do not expect to lose that much weight, but it's just very exciting to see intermittent fasting presented in such a great way. Other than that one little claim, the rest of the article is very solid.

Melanie Avalon: That is so exciting. I'm excited to go pick it up tomorrow.

Gin Stephens: Me too. I'm going to definitely be at the grocery store.

Melanie Avalon: Please sign a copy. I was going to say it for me. Are you going to go sign copies at the grocery store?

Gin Stephens: No. I am not going to do that.

Melanie Avalon: I wonder if they would like kick you out.

Gin Stephens: I think if someone buying Fast. Feast. Repeat. is my target audience, but at the grocery store, someone buying Woman's World, no. But hopefully it'll bring people to Fast. Feast. Repeat. and then when they read it, they will say, “Okay, I'm not expected to lose weight the first 28 days.” I think being realistic is important. Next step, solve the way they promote these things at the checkout counter. I was unable to solve that problem, but maybe we can get them to portray things differently, I don't know.

Melanie Avalon: I doubt it.

Gin Stephens: That'd be a great goal.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, that's like a goal for life.

Gin Stephens: I know. I was excited. What's up with you, anything new?

Melanie Avalon: I mentioned this. I've started to do dry needling, which you have not done, correct?

Gin Stephens: Never.

Melanie Avalon: Listeners, I would love to hear people's experiences. It's to target muscle tension and pain and things like that. So, I've been doing it in my jaw.

Gin Stephens: Are you doing it yourself, or someone doing it?

Melanie Avalon: Oh, no! Gosh.

Gin Stephens: I didn't think so. But when you said that, I got suddenly, maybe Melanie-- I mean, I can just imagine you lying in your freezer of water, sticking needles in--

Melanie Avalon: To that point, so I've had some intramuscular glutathione sitting in my fridge for like a month but I've been too scared to do it because I'm too scared to stick something into my muscle, but I got the dry needling done, I was like, “I can do this now.”

Gin Stephens: I actually can do that. I can, I had to do allergy shots. I gave myself allergy shots years ago.

Melanie Avalon: Was it subcutaneous though, or muscle?

Gin Stephens: I can do either.

Melanie Avalon: Subcutaneous is totally fine.

Gin Stephens: Well, yeah, and that's super easy.

Melanie Avalon: But muscle. I'm like, “Hmm.”

Gin Stephens: I had to do that with the HCG diet.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I did it with that back in the day, but glutathione, nobody tells you it burns. So that was an epic fail. When I was getting the dry needling though-- Okay, are you ready for my Monday? This is my Monday. Getting dry needling, getting it in your jaws is one of the most painful things I think I've ever experienced. Yes, it is. Two, he started doing my neck, and right before he did it, I was like, “What if he like pierces a vein?” And then, he did. I literally thought I was going to faint. And then, I got out of it. And I realized my Apple ID was compromised from the Philippines, and everything just crashed and burned. That's my life.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, it's always awful when something like that happens. Like if you go to Twitter, there's a Gin Stephens. Someone stole my Twitter account, Gin Stephens, years ago when I wasn't really using it when I was just a schoolteacher, someone stole--

Melanie Avalon: Your actual account?

Gin Stephens: Gin Stephens, yeah. Someone stole it. And so, now I have to be Gin underscore Stephens because I no longer have the email address that was associated with the one I set it up back in 2012. And like I promise, this is me. It's not even a picture of me. If you go to the old Gin Stephens, there's like a picture of me and then someone else. That's not me, and they stole it.

Melanie Avalon: This was people, I guess, got my Apple ID, and so they were like buying all this stuff. And they said all of my devices were infected with like trojans, and I was like, “What?” But they fixed it. They were on top of it.

Gin Stephens: Apple did?

Melanie Avalon: Mm-hmm. It's really impressive. Like you call and they fix it like while you're on the phone. It was so fast. I was like, “Wow,” I did have to pay for security now going forward.

Gin Stephens: Well, that's really exciting because Twitter could not help me, but it was because I didn't have that email address anymore. And that's frustrating since they don't go with you when you change providers from one internet provider to the other. Others can, but that one did not because I changed internet providers.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, modern world. So, that's that. Shall we jump into everything for today?

Gin Stephens: Yes, let's get started.

Melanie Avalon: All right, so to start things off, this is from a Melanie, I didn't realize that. The subject is "Body Needing IF?!" And Melanie says, “Hi, Gin and Melanie. I am a 32-year-old twin mama, who has been doing IF for the past 20 months. I started very gradually after having heard of your podcast by complete coincidence on another show."

Gin Stephens: I wonder what other show?

Melanie Avalon: Melanie, can you let us know? Please email us. I'm really curious. Okay. She said, “I never thought I would be able in a million years to fast as I have been a serial snacker all my life. I've been successfully able to get to a 20:4 and also regular 24-hour fasting. I usually stick to this fasting schedule during the week and stick to a very healthy diet with a 12:12 hour window on weekends. My two-year-old toddlers refuse to eat if I'm not eating with them on the weekend. I do not have this issue during the week as they go to daycare very early and eat breakfast with their educator.

I have not been losing weight with IF since I began, but I was a little underweight to begin with. My goal was mostly to gain energy, hello two-year-old twins here! And also manage my Crohn's symptoms, both of which have greatly improved with IF. With all this being said, my question is, can the body get to the point of needing IF to feel good? As time passes, I realized I always feel so sluggish and bloated on weekends even though I eat healthy. Is it possible that eventually the body gets so used to the fasting state that it needs it to be feel good and function well?

The only thing I find positive during weekends is having the fuel for very long and intensive workouts and I would love to know if there's any research on how the body adapts long term to daily fasting. Any thoughts on needing fasting to feel well? Thank you so much for all you do. You make my daily commute so much more fun."

Gin Stephens: Awesome. Yeah, I don't think there's any research on really-- I don't know, correct me if I'm wrong, Melanie. Have you ever done or read any research on fasting that focuses on the way people feel as a primary thing? I've seen studies where they talked about that people were able to stick to it or if they were hungry, but never focusing all the energy that we feel and how great we feel. I've never seen an actual research study that even talked about that. Have you?

Melanie Avalon: I've seen a lot on mood, if you would qualify that as mood. I don't know if there's one on vitality, though.

Gin Stephens: Right. That's what I mean. That's what I'm talking about. I have seen what you're talking about with mood, not specifically of what she's saying. But really, I think, Melanie, it's just you realize, “Hey, this pattern feels really good to my body.” And then, you notice when you're not doing it. It's like if you don't get a good night's sleep, and then you feel sluggish the next day, you then realize, “Gosh, I feel better when I sleep well” if this is the same kind of a thing. Or if there's foods that don't work well for you, and you eat them, and then you feel worse. You're like, “Hey, that food doesn't work well, for me.” Basically, you're realizing that a 12-hour eating window is not how your body feels its best. You're spinning it to say that your body needs fasting to feel good, but really, you feel good when you're fasting, not that you need fasting to feel good. It's just that this is the state where you do feel good. I don't know. Am I explaining that all crazy?

Melanie Avalon: My main primary thought was that just what Gin said, that you feel so good with fasting that it's a mirror for how you feel when you're not in that state. So, eating. It is always an inflammatory process to some extent, it just is. For some people, it's way more inflammatory. For others, it's barely at all. Some people feel fine after eating or great after eating and they don't feel much different after eating compared to fasting even because they just aren't reacting to foods, everything just works well. But a lot of people, if they do have an inflammatory response to food-- and it could be a lot of things, it could be digestion issues. She says that she feels sluggish and bloated, it could be food reactions, it could be how your microbiome reacts. Basically, when you eat it can be very telling as to how the food is actually affecting your body. So, fasting is not making your body unhealthy or making your body require fasting to be more healthy or be more effective. But it by itself, it might help support your digestion and help you solve health issues. I'm not saying it's necessarily a health issue, but fasting by itself is not going to change necessarily the response you have to a meal based on your current, like, what the meal is, how you eat it, what your microbiome is, because then you're in the eating state. So, it's kind of like the fasting criteria goes out the window. Does that make sense?

I relate though. I do in a way feel I need to do fasting to feel good, but it's mostly because I feel like the way Melanie feels. I'll get sluggish and bloated after eating meals now. I think an exception would be if I ate just fruit or something, like something that was really easily digested, really quick fuel and in a way-- and this is going to confuse people, so I almost don't want to say it, but in a way almost mimicking the fasted state and that is just pure energy. My body is definitely used to functioning in the fasted state now.

Gin Stephens: If I overeat, and my window is too long, I feel sluggish and bloated. On a normal day, when I open my window and I eat, I don't feel bloated. It's evening, so I feel that's a normal time to feel tired, the evening. But I don't really know that I would say I feel sluggish. If I go on vacation and open my window really, really early, yeah, sluggish. And after several days of it, yes, bloated. It's just that overly full feeling that I don't like to feel.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And actually, to that point, just because you're talking about feeling. She doesn't say she has IBS or anything like that, so I don't want to prescribe that onto her.

Gin Stephens: Well, she said she has Crohn’s.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, wait. Oh, she does. Oh, yeah, my bad. Now, I feel like I should have been more strong what I was saying before because actually, everything I said really applies. Yes, if the foods you're eating are exacerbating your GI symptoms for whatever reason, 100% it's normal that you're feeling sluggish or bloated after them and it totally makes sense why you feel great fasting. No, you don't need the fasting to feel great. But if your GI state and tract and everything is in a state where it is reacting intensely to food, it's just natural that you probably won't feel so well after it. So, that would be really mitigated by really, really looking at your food choices.

Gin Stephens: I have something else I'd like to throw in there as a teacher and as a mother. Melanie says that her two-year-old toddlers refuse to eat if she's not eating with them. I think it's time to teach them that mama doesn't have to eat for you to eat. You can sit with them and not eat. And they'll eat. I wonder if their teacher eats with them. She might just be there with them because teachers don't always eat with the kids either. So, there's two of them. If they're both eating and you're sitting there with your clean fast beverage, they're probably not going to notice that you're not eating. They probably want you with them. It's not so much the act of you putting food into your mouth. They're two, they're going to be getting older. If you don't want to eat with them for 12 hours, say, “Mama is not going to eat right now. Mama will sit here with you. I'm going to have this coffee.” Just tell them.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really glad you brought that up.

Gin Stephens: They’ll eat. I promise you, a toddler will eat when they're hungry. And they're not going to refuse to eat if they're hungry.

Melanie Avalon: I'm really glad you brought that up.

Gin Stephens: I read a book, French Kids Eat Anything or Eat Everything or something. I didn’t read the whole book. So that was a lie, sorry. I didn’t read the book. I read the summary of the book or I read the free-- You know how Amazon will send you the free--

Melanie Avalon: The first, yeah-- such a tease that kills me.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I didn’t buy the whole book but I read the free sample, that’s the word I am looking for. I read the reviews about it. Basically, the premise of that book is that kids all around the world do not play games with food the way American children do. They just eat their food. Whether they're in Asia eating scorpions, whatever. They eat whatever there is. They're not picky eaters but then we're raising all these picky eaters who are like telling us-- I remember when Cal was a baby, I was like, "He only eats things that are beige." And I let him do that. I let Cal only eat foods that were beige. And so, I catered to that. I would like to go back in time and not cater to that. But I was panicked. I was like, “Well, he only wants to eat these chicken nuggets and vanilla pudding and French fries.” Okay, look, that sounds terrible. Crackers, he ate those things if I gave them. Carrots, he spit them out. I should have just kept presenting the carrots.

Melanie Avalon: You know what is actually really interesting to that point? I just finished reading Cate Shanahan's Fatburn Fix. And she has a section on teaching herself to like certain foods that you don't like. And they've done studies on kids and taste buds, I guess it takes 10 exposures of our taste buds to something new before there's a definitive answer as to whether our taste buds like it or not.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, that makes perfect sense.

Melanie Avalon: The way you do it is you have like a really small amount of the food you're trying to get to like at a time when you're a little bit hungry and you do it 10 times over a few weeks. And then, if by 10 times you don't like it, then you can just give up. I like most foods so I was thinking about this like-- I think it's so interesting when you eat mostly real foods and stop eating processed foods and especially with fasting--

Gin Stephens: The hyper-palatable foods. Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, most “food” I like. The only ones I don't like are things that I think actually have allergies to like olives or--

Gin Stephens: Yum, I love olives. But like me and fish. I don't like fish.

Melanie Avalon: I can't understand this.

Gin Stephens: I wish I did. But the thing is, is that like I said, would like to go back in time and be a different mom and not cater to that. Because now it sounds just so silly, when I think back, I'm like, “My child will only eat chicken nuggets.” Well, okay, he'll eat something else if I give him something else and he's hungry. He will eat it. They will eat it. Anyway, do what I say, not what I did, right?

Melanie Avalon: Yep, what you learned.

Gin Stephens: It's true.

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Gin Stephens: All right, we have a question from Megan. And the subject is "Smoking and Intermittent Fasting." Megan says, “Hey, girls. Super fan here. Love your show. You opened a whole new world for me when I found your podcast. My question has to do with smoking cigarettes and intermittent fasting. I recently quit smoking. Yay!” And that was Megan saying, Yay, but I think Melanie and I would also say, yay!

Melanie Avalon: Yes, yay!

Gin Stephens: And she says, “And wonder what information you can provide to me about whether or not intermittent fasting may help prevent weight gain after quitting smoking. I am beyond thrilled about finally taking my health more seriously and quitting, but am worried about the potential weight gain. Thanks so much. You guys are the best.”

Melanie Avalon: Awesome. Well, thank you so much, Megan, for your question. And again, applause for you for quitting smoking. So, I did a lot of searching. Unsurprisingly, there are not any studies specifically on intermittent fasting and mitigating weight gain after smoking. However, there are a lot of studies on weight gain after smoking. So, yes, many people do gain weight after smoking. There's a lot of potential reasons for that.

One is the change in your metabolism. Nicotine can actually boost your metabolism or cause you to burn more. There's actually a lot of really fascinating studies on nicotine and why it makes us not hungry and things that does. One thing is they think it maybe activates like beige fat, which is brown fat, which is a type of body fat that is more metabolically active. Another study found that it stimulates compounds similar to-- I'm trying to remember exactly what it said. I think it was basically the sympathetic nervous system. So, adrenaline and things like that. It taps into similar pathways and encourages the body to burn fat. Nicotine itself actually supports weight loss. When you cut that out, you're making hormonal changes in your body, you're making chemical changes. So, that's not something that's super easy to mitigate with the exception of if you were using a nicotine patch, or something like that.

Also, with smoking, it can alter your food preferences. They find people who quit smoking often start craving more sweet foods, especially if you're eating that in processed forms, that makes a lot of sense. And then, a lot of people turn to food as a substitute for the psychological effects of tobacco. So, instead of smoking that's like a habit, they turned to eating.

Gin Stephens: It's like that oral fixation. You've been filling that need with the cigarette going into your mouth, and now you're putting something else into your mouth.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, the oral fixation and then also, a lot of people obviously are turning to smoking for anxiety relief, and so they might switch that out for food instead, which has a tendency that in the moment, it can make people feel better, regardless of the long-term implications. So, they've actually done a lot of studies to see how putting people who stopped smoking on diets that are intended to either make them lose weight or not gain weight and see how they respond. What they found is that in the quitting process, because normally it's like lining up with while you're quitting, if the diets are too restrictive, it usually backfires because quitting smoking by itself is very taxing on willpower. So, when you couple that with a restrictive diet, it doesn't usually go so well.

That said, when people are trying to quit smoking, and they're put on personalized dietary protocols that are not too restrictive and are meant to help them lose weight, and then especially if it's coupled with addressing their fear of gaining weight, that psychological aspect seems to be huge. Basically, the key, it seems, to not gaining weight after smoking, is to not have a fear that you're going to gain weight and to be following a dietary protocol that would encourage weight loss. So, basically, that says to me that intermittent fasting is perfect for this situation because we know all the benefits of intermittent fasting, we know how it supports the body, how it does support naturally a fat-burning state. We know that it's not based on this over-restriction, it's not a chronic crash diet. It's something that is very sustainable and supportive of the body.

So, I think, hands down, intermittent fasting could be one of the best ways to potentially mitigate fat gain after quitting smoking. And if you haven't been doing intermittent fasting before and you start doing it while quitting smoking, you could completely reframe instead of having fear of gaining weight, there's the potential of trying this new dietary lifestyle which could completely revolutionize your fat-burning potential. So, yeah, you could reframe into possibly losing weight even though you're quitting smoking.

Gin Stephens: Well, I have very short thoughts and they're a little smart-alecky. The question was, whether or not intermittent fasting may help prevent weight gain after quitting smoking. The answer is yes. May help, it may help. Sorry, is that too short?

Melanie Avalon: No.

Gin Stephens: I think what she said is great. And yeah, I think that it's probably-- just like you said, Melanie, at the end there, it's probably one of your best bets to help prevent the weight gain after quitting smoking. I've never smoked, so I don't know how hard it is to quit. But I've watched people quit smoking, so I do know it's hard.

Melanie Avalon: She just said, she quit. I wonder how she quit. I see no problem with using nicotine patches or something like that, too.

Gin Stephens: I agree.

Melanie Avalon: To quit, especially since low-dose nicotine potentially even has health benefits. Not to be controversial.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I know, I've seen that too.

Melanie Avalon: Not that I haven't experimented with nicotine patches.

Gin Stephens: Have you?

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Okay.

Melanie Avalon: I think the most fascinating research on them is their potential therapeutic use for people with Parkinson's, because of how it regulates the dopamine system. It's very interesting, but I don't chew nicotine gum because that would break the fast.

Gin Stephens: Exactly. Yeah, we get that question a lot though, about nicotine gum and nicotine lozenges. We recommend the patch definitely for people who are not wanting to break the fast. But yay, Megan, I'm so glad. Don't worry about the-- even if you do gain a little weight after quitting smoking, know that you're really helping your body. And so, it'll work itself out after that transition.

Melanie Avalon: Exactly. I love it. All right, so the next question comes from Kate. The subject is "Increased Energy After Eating." This is kind of like the flip side of--

Gin Stephens: I know. I love this one. When I read it, I was like, “I could answer that one.”

Melanie Avalon: Kate says, “Hi ladies. I just found your podcast in the last week and I've been doing IF for three months. I started at the beginning of your podcast episodes, so I have many left to listen to and I apologize if you've already answered this. But I've heard you answer listener questions about feeling sluggish after eating.” Like we just did. She said, “I am the exact opposite. I feel super energized after eating and sometimes have trouble sleeping after dinner. Just to let you know where I am, I was doing a six-hour eating window for the first two months and lost 10 pounds in that time, but wasn't fasting clean using Nutpods creamer in my coffee. I learned from you ladies to cut that out. Thank you.

The third month I saw no further progress on the scale despite a clean fast and shifted to fasted workouts and one meal a day, but I'm still in a weight loss plateau. I do have more weight to lose, but I plan to stick with it. Does it mean I'm not in ketosis if I feel energetic after eating? Am I doing something wrong? I've ordered both Gin's books and can't wait to read them. Thank you so much. Kate.”

Gin Stephens: This is a great question. I would actually say, Kate, if you have extra energy that you feel after eating, I think that means you actually are in ketosis because sometimes ketosis keeps me from being able to sleep well. If I don't eat enough, I'm too energetic to relax. Just like I've talked about how sugar gives me restless legs, not eating enough in my eating window makes me toss and turn and feel restless when I'm trying to sleep and it gives me the energy of the ketosis. Yeah, that's what I think.

My prediction would be, especially if you're doing fasted workouts and one meal a day-- and I'm also curious, if you're defining one meal a day as a very short eating window, it's very likely that you're deeply in ketosis, and that's the energy that you're feeling. So, not doing something wrong. You are probably really doing some right things if ketosis is what you want. But you may want to see if you need your eating window to be a little longer. Noticed that you're doing fasted workout. So, I would focus on how your body composition might be changing. Take some photos wearing tight clothes, like your goal clothes and see if the fit of your clothes is changing over time, even if the scale is not changing. You may be at a weight loss plateau, but not at a fat loss plateau. Those are two different things. You could be losing fat, building muscle. It looks like a plateau on the scale, but it's not a plateau in your body. So, that's what I would suspect is happening. I would suspect lots of fat burning, it sounds like ketosis, the extra energy, and body composition.

Melanie Avalon: I love what you said. I was wondering when she says like, “Does it mean I'm not in ketosis if I feel energetic after eating?”, do you think she's asking about like she's not in ketosis, specifically after eating or she's not in ketosis?”

Gin Stephens: I think she's asking since she feels good after eating, does that mean she's never getting into ketosis? I would say no. I actually have great energy, and really, I often don't have a real sluggish feeling. I like to go to bed bit early. Have you ever done that chronotype quiz? I can't remember the sleep doctor that has that.

Melanie Avalon: Is it where you're an owl or a wolf?

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think I'm a wolf, or there's a bear and a wolf.

Gin Stephens: I'm the lion. The lion is the one who wakes up really early and then goes to bed early. I just did it yesterday because one of the moderators was talking about it, and I had done it before, but I was like, “Let me do it again.” I'm a lion. It's basically your whole--

Melanie Avalon: Circadian rhythm?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, your personal circadian rhythm of when you feel most energetic. For me, I like to go to bed early. But I look back my whole life to college and I was always the friend who would sneak away and go to bed early. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: People say everybody's that type, and I'm just like, “I don't think so.” Because I have never like that ever, and you have.

Gin Stephens: You're not. The people who say everyone is like that are the people who are like that and think everyone should be like them. I really believe that a lot of people do that. They say, “This is how I am. This is how everyone really is.” But you're just lying to yourself. No, that's not true.

Melanie Avalon: I think the fact that even on days I was severely sleep deprived and was like, “Tonight is the night I am going to bed at 6:00 PM--”

Gin Stephens: You just physically can't.

Melanie Avalon: Well, I would be tired during the day, but then come evening, be like, “Hey! It's time to party.”

Gin Stephens: Well, it's just like me trying to sleep in. I cannot sleep in.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: I went to the beach with friends. We were up really, really late and I'm going to sleep in the next day. No, I wake up 6:00 AM, my eyes pop open whether I went to bed at 3:00 AM or 9:00 PM. I wake up first thing in the morning. So, that's just the way it is. The whole point of that was that eating doesn't necessarily make me sluggish. Now, if I ate too much, I feel sluggish, that's the difference. If I eat so much, if I eat too much, it makes me feel sluggish. But if I don't, I continue to feel super energetic, in fact, too energetic because of the ketosis.

Melanie Avalon: I find it interesting that there's this idea or she had this idea, and I'm sure others do as well, that with intermittent fasting, that it's a sign of success if you are feeling sluggish after eating. So, that's not the message that we want to put out there.

Gin Stephens: It's not unusual to feel sluggish after eating, but it's not wrong to either feel sluggish or not feel sluggish.

Melanie Avalon: On the flip side, it's okay to feel tired after eating. It's what you just said. A lot of people think that you either need to feel really energetic after eating and that's correct, or, well, I guess, the opposite.

Gin Stephens: I've learned this with these large Facebook groups more than anything else. People will look to what happens to one person and then if that doesn't happen for them, they immediately think something's wrong. Like, “Well, I don't get the metallic taste in my mouth. I must be broken.” Well, no, not everyone gets that. Even in ketosis, not everyone gets that. So, there's not any one right way it has to be and then if you don't have that, then you're wrong. Some people lose pounds, but not inches. Some people lose inches, but not pounds, and neither is wrong. It's just what your body's doing.

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All right, now back to the show.

Gin Stephens: Okay, we have a question from Shae, and the subject is "Fasting Question." Shae says, “Good afternoon. I have been doing IF for about 10 months now, 100% clean fasting. I do one meal a day and average a 20- to 24-hour fast each day depending on my schedule. I like to stick to a two or three-hour eating window, but currently working from home while also homeschooling my son has led to the accidental 24-hour fasts from time to time. I used to get so cold when I first started IF, now I am noticing that I feel so hot after I've had my one meal a day and I've closed my window. My one meal has been based on whatever sounds good. Lately, that has been a homemade spinach salad mix, homemade barbecue chicken breast, and some yogurt with granola for dessert. My question is, why am I hot after eating?

I searched the Facebook group but didn't see any real answer. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Thank you for everything you do for us. I'm so grateful for your knowledge and I can't wait for the book release tomorrow. I keep waiting for it to appear in my Kindle Library.” So, I can see that Shae wrote this in June when Fast. Feast. Repeat. was about to pop into her library. So exciting.

Melanie Avalon: All right. Shae, thank you for your question. Yes. So, it is very common to feel hot after eating and that's typically due to the thermic effect of food. When we eat foods, a portion of calories burned during digesting that food generates heat. It's also the reason that certain types of protein is “more metabolic boosting” or counts as “less calories” than carbs or fat, and that's because the thermic effect of protein is around 30%, I think. So, 30% of the calories burned when you're burning protein are actually just the metabolism digesting that protein and that materializes in the form of heat. Eating is-- I mean, depending on what you're eating, but tends to be a hot process just by the metabolic process of generating energy. That's a really simple answer.

Gin Stephens: But it's true. If I eat more carbs, I'm more likely to be hotter. The more carbs, the hotter.

Melanie Avalon: I'm glad you said that. Carbs in particular tend to boost the metabolic rate.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I can feel it cranking up and I have even taken my body temperature just for fun, because I love to see what's happening. I’ll feel super hot, I'll take my temperature, it'll be 99 or something like that. I can feel it. I could just feel the heat radiating off of me. It's so interesting.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Especially if you eat protein and carbs, that's probably going to be the most heat-stimulating meal compared to something like a low carb, higher fat, if it's lower protein. We talked about this a lot before but, for example, they did studies where they massively, massively overfeed people, when you way overfeed them just with carbs, the body's response, yes, it turns a little bit of those carbs to fat but it actually preferentially tends to just crank up the metabolism and you just get really, really hot.

Gin Stephens: That is 100% true for me. Yeah. [laughs]

Melanie Avalon: So funny because people think there's this idea with calories. “Oh, if you eat more calories than you burned--” Well, it is true for you more calories than you burned, then you would store it. But that doesn't mean that if you eat a certain amount of calories, you're only going to burn a certain amount because the body can make the choice to instead of storing it, burn them instead.

Gin Stephens: Jason Fung explained it to me in a way, the first time I ever really went, “Oh, we all hear of it as calories in, calories out.” And that's a great math formula. That is based on two assumptions. One is that all calories in are treated the same, which we know there aren't. But the other is that calories out is static, and that's not true. The whole idea of I have had my metabolism tested and my resting metabolic rate is X. We assume that that's like a static number that's never going to change but that's so not true. Our bodies can crank up calories out or crank down calories out, and you can't control that.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, actually I just mentioned Cate Shanahan’s Fatburn Fix, which we'll put a link to that in the show notes by the way. But she talks about the metabolism and she says the metabolism isn't fixed, it's not a certain number. Your metabolism changes based on what energy you need. Basically, it just changes based on what your cells are getting, what you're eating.

Gin Stephens: Which is why when I see someone-- it makes me cringe now, when someone's like, my TDEE is blah, blah, blah. No, it isn't. It's not. Total daily energy expenditure, that's what TDEE. In some diet circles, people live and die by their TDEE. Your body is not working like that.

Melanie Avalon: We talked about NEAT before, which is non-exercise activity thermogenesis. That's basically a number in a way of calories that your body can just burn. It happens from fidgeting and just movement that you do throughout the day, but it can vary wildly. And the thing is some people's NEAT is really, really low. They'll overeat and NEAT doesn't really adjust and they gain weight from it. Some people, the NEAT just goes through the roof and they just naturally burn off all that extra calories without trying to.

Gin Stephens: Now, see, that's interesting. That made me think my restless legs after eating sugar, I wonder if that's related, it's like I can't be still. It's like my NEAT is gone crazy.

Melanie Avalon: I've thought about that because I used to get restless legs. Honestly, I want to have an episode just on restless legs.

Gin Stephens: Well, I know it's not magnesium. Sometimes, people say it's magnesium. I've had my magnesium levels tested and they're fine, and that's the one thing I have always been able to take in every day. It could be iron.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I think there's like five things. One magnesium, not magnesium - iron. Looking back when I was really anemic and didn't know it, that's when my restless legs were through the roof.

Gin Stephens: But what's interesting is that it doesn't happen-- there's that definite correlation of too much sugar, restless legs.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, to the sugar point, I think it could be two things. It could be that, just too much energy. I keep referencing her book but Cate Shanahan, she posits that it's peripheral nerve changes from sugar consumption, which I've also read another book as well. The fifth thing, I think, likely involves dopamine. That's one of the reasons I was experimenting with nicotine patches, because of the restless legs.

Gin Stephens: Well, I feel it from too much sugar, like I said, but also how I mentioned earlier if I don't eat enough, and I have way too much ketosis energy, that also manifests itself after I've eaten, but only after I've eaten. I never have restless legs during the fast ever, but if I eat and haven't eaten enough, then I'll feel that little restless leg thing happening from-- I guess my body is trying to get rid of the ketones. I don't know. It feels like too much energy.

Melanie Avalon: This is why I don't know why this is but restless legs are the worst.

Gin Stephens: They really are. And my husband's like, “Be still.” I'm like, “I wish. Thank you.”

Melanie Avalon: For people who've never had them, they don't sound that bad, but they're just the worst. They're just so unpleasant and there's nothing you can't stop it. How do you? I don't know.

Gin Stephens: You can only stop it by really getting up and walking around. It always happens though when you're sitting in an airplane seat and when you're trying to go to bed at night or sitting on the couch or sitting in an auditorium. Those are the times that it's really, really unpleasant.

Melanie Avalon: Now, I'm wondering because you're speaking about how it happens at night, which same for me and the research I've done on it. It's typically usually at night for people. I wonder if that's because if it is something related to metabolic issues, maybe most people tend to be less insulin sensitive and have more metabolic issues at night. I'm just theorizing. I wonder if that has any connection at all.

Gin Stephens: I don't know. But ooh, ooh, did I tell you this? This is exciting. You know that PREDICT 2 study?

Melanie Avalon: You're going to be in it, right?

Gin Stephens: Yes. I got the box of stuff.

Melanie Avalon: Oh, you did?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, the box came. It's PREDICT 3 is where we are now.

Melanie Avalon: So, it's food?

Gin Stephens: Well, yeah.

Melanie Avalon: What is it?

Gin Stephens: They're testing your response to things. I'm going to be wearing a continuous glucose monitor for seven days. And they sent me one, I have to send it back. What if I didn't send it back? What would they do?

Melanie Avalon: Hmm.

Gin Stephens: [laughs] I really want to keep it. Anyway, I'm supposed to send it back. I will send it back. I'm a rules follower. But you have to take a poop sample and send that to them. So, they're looking at your gut microbiome. They're looking at your response. They have these muffins that they send, and I'm going to have to eat muffins in the morning for a couple days. I know I'm going to have to do it.

Melanie Avalon: You're committed.

Gin Stephens: Well, this is why I said no to PREDICT 2, even though I was approved for the study about a year ago. I was like, “I don't have time to fool with all this.” But this is just all doing it here at home. I also think people had to go get blood drawn at a lab. But now it's all just self-collected, you do it all at home, and it's only seven days, I think it's easier than PREDICT 2 was, but they have an app called ZOE. The reason everyone has to eat these same exact muffins that they actually sent, you have to eat them at certain times and then wait a certain amount of time, and they're going to see what your blood glucose does. So, they're seeing what with this exact meal, what happens.

Melanie Avalon: That's exciting.

Gin Stephens: I know. So, then they'll also analyze my gut microbiome and see. Then, they make personalized suggestions based on the results. I'm so excited. I'll be talking about it more, I'm sure.

Melanie Avalon: When are you starting it?

Gin Stephens: I probably won't have started next time we record, I'm not sure, but I'm going to the beach with Chad. I want to wait till I've been home a few days. I'm also planning it around my schedule because I want to have the breakfast muffins on days when I don't have podcast episodes scheduled. I have it all kind of planned out around that. I'll be starting it in about a week from today.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I've had my CGM in the box for a month now. I was going to do it a few weeks ago because I'm bringing on a CGM company on to the Melanie Avalon Biohacking Podcast, but I'm getting surgery in two days, and I was like, “I don't want to deal with monitoring all of this stuff.” I'm already stressed about surgery, so maybe we'll be doing it at a similar time. I was going to maybe start it after surgery.

Gin Stephens: Well, I want you to figure out a way that CGM company-- figure out a way for them to get one for me. I need one too. Do it.

Melanie Avalon: After they come on my show.

Gin Stephens: Get one for me because I will talk about it. I'm so interested. I want to know what my body is doing. I've been fascinated ever since I saw that Eran Segal video, “What is the best diet for humans?” It was in 2017, I've been fascinated since then. When he talked about that we all have an individual glucose response. I'm dying to know what mine is.

Melanie Avalon: I have so many questions for when I interview them because I think my biggest question is because people will say, “Oh, you should have slow-digesting carbs, and it's better to have like an extended blood sugar release rather than a spike." But then there's the idea that maybe the healthiest thing is to have a high spike but a short spike and then back to baseline.

Gin Stephens: Everything I read, and I talk about this in Fast. Feast. Repeat., that what we don't want is for our curve to look a scary roller coaster. You don't want it to look like high up, low dip, high up, low dip, like you're on the monster scary adult roller coaster. Instead, you want it to look like the little kid's roller coaster with a gentle up and a gentle down.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. Say it was a roller coaster, it's like a fast roller coaster. So, it's like straight, and then the comparison between either a really high one up but then straight down, like a Tower of Terror type thing, compared to up, really high, and then slowly going down.

Gin Stephens: I think the goal is to never have it go up really high.

Melanie Avalon: That's what I actually think there might be a nuance there because I'm not sure that an acute high spike if it goes down quickly is a problem.

Gin Stephens: I feel like that would make me feel bad. I would feel that crash.

Melanie Avalon: I guess it would depend.

Gin Stephens: I don't know, I haven't tested my blood, so I don't really know. But what was interesting is I had a friend-- I haven't heard from him in a while actually. He was in my Facebook group, and he's a doctor in Canada, and every now and then he would send me like-- he was using a CGM. And he'd be like, “Look what happened with fasting.” And it was just interesting and I've been wanting to have one ever since.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, I'm really, really excited. Paul Saladino, the carnivore guy?

Gin Stephens: Yeah.

Melanie Avalon: He is being all controversial now because he was carnivore for the longest time, now he's eating a lot of honey.

Gin Stephens: Okay. That's so interesting.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah, because he realized that he felt like his body needed carbs. But he did an experiment with a CGM while bringing back the honey to see what happened. I did an episode on it. But it basically was high spikes right after the honey but then, pretty quick back to baseline. So, not an extended higher blood sugar. I think the main problem is the extended higher blood sugar, which is why I get nervous about a lot of people on keto diets who do experience extended higher blood sugars. I'm fascinated by that.

Gin Stephens: Because that's the whole thing with type 2 diabetes that they don't want to see, constant high blood sugar. That's where the damage occurs if your blood sugar is high.

Melanie Avalon: A lot of people on keto seem to have resting blood sugars that are high, and they call it like-- I don't remember. There's a word for it. But basically, the idea that the insulin receptors are becoming sensitive in a way, they're choosing to reject sugar to keep enough sugar around because it's low carb, but I don't know, I'm very fascinated by all of it. So, we shall see.

Gin Stephens: I think really a lot of these questions are not fully answered even.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah.

Gin Stephens: Science is still figuring it out. Anyway, I'm really fascinated. I can't wait to see what I find out. I'm not sure I'll respond well to their muffins because they're very processed and that's the kind of thing I would not eat on its own in isolation. I never eat highly processed carbs by themselves ever. I might have tortilla chips, but I'm going to have them with hummus or with guacamole or with something that's going to slow down the absorption of just carbs. I would never open my window with a cookie or a muffin. Well, I wonder don't mind if I like slathered in peanut butter?

Melanie Avalon: Probably.

Gin Stephens: Yeah, I've got to have it like they tell me to, just the muffin. So, I might be like lying on the floor. I might be sluggish that day. The things we do for science.

Melanie Avalon: I know.

Gin Stephens: I'm so excited. I've been having the fear of missing out. I've been watching my friends, the moderators that went through it that did PREDICT 2 and getting their results back. And anyway, I was like, “Why didn't I just do it?” Even though it was a bad time, I should have just done it. But anyway.

Melanie Avalon: I haven't tested my blood sugar. I used to test it religiously every single night. The best blood sugars I had, hands down, was when I was doing one meal a day, tons of fruit and low fat. And my blood sugar was always so great the next day.

Gin Stephens: That's telling.

Melanie Avalon: Yeah. And then I feel like it got wonky. So, all right. Well, this has been absolutely wonderful. So, if you would like to submit your own question to the podcast, 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 episode. We'll put links to everything that we talked about. What will be at ifpodcast.com/episode180. You can follow us on Instagram, we are @ifpodcast. You can follow me, I'm @melanieavalon. You can follow Gin, she's @gin_stephens. You can also join, I made a new Facebook group recently for people who want to do breath-testing for carbs, fats, or ketones. That's called Lumen Lovers and Bioscience Biohackers. And, yeah, anything else, Gin, you'd like to throw out there?

Gin Stephens: Nope. I think that's it. Good luck with your surgery.

Melanie Avalon: Isn't so-- Okay, next time we talk, it'll be done.

Gin Stephens: Yay!

Melanie Avalon: I'm so excited. I'm so scared. I'm so scared. But I guess it's over before you even realize, right?

Gin Stephens: Yeah, exactly. You'll be under anesthesia.

Melanie Avalon: I know. Okay, well, I will talk to you next week or some time.

Gin Stephens: All right. Bye-bye.

Melanie Avalon: Bye.

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

STUFF WE LIKE

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, Feast Without Fear: Food and the Delay, Don't Deny Lifestyle and/or Gin's Fast. Feast. Repeat.: The Clean Fast Protocol for Health, Longevity, and Weight Loss--Including the 21-Day FAST Start Guide

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

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